Extra love comes in all varieties!
The most important choice you can make for your pet's health on a day to day basis is how much and what you choose to feed them. Pet obesity is a common problem we face in the veterinary field. A 2017 survey stated an estimated 56% of dogs and 60% of cats are overweight or obese in the United States. ("Pet Obesity Prevention." petobesityprevention.org Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, 2018.) In the veterinary field we are finding more patients being diagnosed as obese rather than overweight. Clinical obesity can result in a number of health conditions such as arthritis, high blood pressure, certain forms of cancer, diabetes, kidney disease and much more. It also can result in a shorter life expectancy and a reduced quality of life. We don't want that for our furry little friends!
How do we fix this?
A common question we get is, "How much should I feed?" Get to know the diet your pet is on a little bit better. It makes a difference the amount that should be fed whether its dry kibble vs. wet canned food. Nine times out of ten the suggested amount of food to feed listed on your pet's food bag or can is usually too much, this is just a generic listed amount. Even if you're feeding just 1/4 cup more, eventually over time this can add up to a couple extra pounds your pet doesn't need. You can get a measuring cup so you can be consistent with every feeding. Don't make it a heaping one cup either, level it out so it truly is just one cup.
What also makes a difference on how much you should feed your pet is their exercise routine. Are they active throughout the day, go on walks once you get home, like to interact with you and play with their toys or are they usually lazy and like to curl up and cuddle most of the time? If they use up more energy they will need more calories to restore this but, if they tend to be lazy and sleepy they aren't burning off as much as you are putting in them.
Just remember, this takes time! Just as with humans, we won't see results overnight... that's okay! It isn't healthy for our animals to be shedding their weight off so quickly and if this is occurring it can cause some serious medical conditions. Weight loss plan for dogs usually last from 3 to 6 months whereas cats are 9 to 12 months. Keep track of their weight loss so we can see either a successful trend occurring or if they are starting to become stagnant at a certain weight.
A lot of people think extra food is extra love. But we can show extra love in many different ways like playing games, exercising them with their favorite toys, going on nice walks, having a play date and having quality one on one time. We want your pet to live the healthiest and fullest life possible, so if you're concerned about their weight condition or want to make sure you're feeding a full nutrient packed diet, we're just one call away to schedule an appointment. Our doctors here at All Creatures will be more than happy to find what's best suited for your furry friend.
It's almost Halloween, which means we pick out the cutest, funniest and most outrageous costumes for our pets! We want to show your pets off! Send in pictures of your beloved pet to our email to enter in our Halloween costume contest. Once we receive pictures, our Halloween costume committee is going to pick a winner for a dog category and a cat category and post it on our Social Media pages (Facebook/Instagram) for everyone to see just how cute your pet is all dressed up. Please remember to include your name as well as your pets name in the email body. The 2 winners will receive a prize basket specifically containing treats, toys and other fun stuff, one for a cat and the other for a dog as seen in the picture to the left. We can't wait to see what costume your pet is wearing for this Halloween!!!
Keep in mind, while we are enjoying our yummy candy and chocolate it can be very toxic to our pets. Please be aware and keep the candy bowls up high and out of reach for your pets to get to. For further information click here and read on.
National Veterinary Technician Week
National Vet Tech week runs from October 14-20 to recognize the contributions made in the veterinary field by veterinary technicians. The veterinary technicians at All Creatures play a critical role in the day to day care for your pet. We take this week to honor their compassion and commitment to the high-quality veterinary care we provide here.
Veterinary Technicians have many roles and duties that include but are not limited to:
~ Obtaining vital information and history of your pet and record vitals
~ Administering vaccines, medications and fluid therapy
~ Positioning and taking radiographs
~ Obtaining blood and urine samples for screening blood work
~ Reading cytology's underneath the microscope
~ Obtain and record blood pressure readings
~ Assist in medical procedures
~ Placing IV catheters and calculating fluid rate
~ Administering laser therapy treatment
~ Inducing and maintaining anesthesia under supervision of the doctor
Our veterinary technician team will make sure your visit runs smoothly and provide the quality and comfort care your animal deserves. This field is forever rewarding in many ways. If you have always had a strong bond with animals, look into the veterinary medical field and see all that it has to offer!
Make your pets famous!
You already know your pet is a star, why not share them with others! Email us a photo or multiple photos of your beloved animal to share them on our website, social media pages and our newsletter! You can pose with them or show them off performing their favorite activity or even snap a photo when they are here at All Creatures for their vet visit! Everyone can use a smile, so why not make your pet the reason why!
When you email us the photo(s) simply just type your pet's name and your last name so we can give a big shout out to you guys! Check on our website and social media pages daily to see if they made it big! You can check out our newsletter which is emailed directly to you once a month and see if they have their candid on there! Hope to see you guys show off your pets!
Why should we vaccinate our pets?
By vaccinating your pet, protection is provided and will decrease the spread of infectious contagious diseases and illnesses throughout the pet population. How does it work? A vaccine contains a weak or man-made version of the disease and when administered will help their body build antibodies to fight the disease if ever present.
All Creatures will make a specific vaccine protocol individualized for each patient because everyone doesn't have the same exposure.
Core vaccines are what dogs and cats should be vaccinated against because the disease has potential to occur in any dog or cat.
Canine Core Vaccines:
DA2PP: Distemper Virus, Parvovirus, Parainfluenza Virus, Adenovirus Type 2
Rabies: Rabies Virus
Feline Core Vaccines:
FVRCP: Rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, panleukopenia virus
Noncore vaccines are lifestyle vaccines that are used if certain exposures are expected.
Canine Noncore Vaccines:
Lepto: Leptospirosis Virus. (This vaccine is under consideration to become a core vaccine at All Creatures). This very aggressive bacterial infection can cause liver failure, it is transmitted through the urine of animals that carry it, including wildlife. It has been identified in the NYC area.
Bord/Kennel Cough: Bordetella Bronchispetica. This vaccine would be recommended if your dog has high exposure to other dogs such as, grooming, doggy daycare, dog walkers, puppy classes or dog parks.
CIV: Canine Influenza Virus. This vaccine would be recommended if your dog has the same exposure as it would for the Bordetella vaccine, or if there is an outbreak of the canine flu around your area. This virus is not widespread or epidemic and is used only if exposure is there.
Lyme: Borrelia Burgdorferi. This vaccine is recommended if your pet is visiting more tick prone areas such as, wooded areas, forests, hiking, hunting, traveling to more southern areas. We recommend still using flea and tick prevention along with this vaccine for continued protection.
Feline Noncore Vaccines
FeLV: Leukemia Virus. Recommended for outdoor cats or having direct contact with other outdoor cats or strays.
FIV: Feline Immunodeficiency Virus. This is uncommonly used as this vaccination's efficacy is uncertain. We do not carry this vaccine.
We start vaccinating puppies and kittens at 8 weeks of age because their immune system is still developing and needs a little kick start. We will continue with subsequent boosters until they surpass 16 weeks old. Afterwards, they will need boosters either annually or every 3 years depending on the vaccines. When a pet starts a new vaccine, it needs to be boostered within a certain timeframe so they can have full immunity to that specific disease. Just receiving an initial vaccine may provide some protection but not fully. Just like with humans, these vaccines are never 100% but if your pet contracts a certain virus, having the vaccine on board can lessen the clinical signs and duration of infection.
What to watch for after a vaccine is administered! Read more about vaccine reactions that can occur. They can occur in any patient, just like us! Typically a reaction will occur in the first 24 hours after a vaccine is administered. If you believe your pet is exhibiting any of these symptoms or unsure please contact us right away. If we are closed be visit BluePearl or VERG right away.
Lameness in the limb where the vaccine was given, lethargy or lack of appetite can be normal for the first 24 hours after a vaccine is administered. If these symptoms persist beyond 24 hours or are very severe please call us or visit then ER centers listed above.
Getting Old Stinks!
The International Veterinary Academy of Pain Management named September as Animal Pain Awareness Month. Old age isn't a disease but pain is! A lot of people can mistake pain for their animal getting old or simply just slowing down. Animals can hide their pain as a natural instinct because it was seen as a sign of weakness from their predators. Pain can come in all different varieties such as, arthritis, surgical pain or cancer pain. Acute pain is distressing and obvious to owners; whereas chronic pain can be subtle and masked as getting old.
Most common signs of pain include:
~Decreased appetite: Can be due to unknown dental disease
~Difficulty standing after laying down for long periods of time: Sign of osteoarthritis
~Reluctant to jump or run around: Especially for our cat friends
~Decreased activity: Not playing or wanting to go on walks as often or as long as they usually would
~Hiding: Animals, especially cats, will often hide when they're experiencing pain
~Change in posture or gait: Hunched over appearance, their movement when they walk is different
~Pets who suddenly become aggressive or wince: Doesn't like to be pet or scratched in certain areas anymore
Pain management and treatment can come from a variety of things:
~Pain medications: NSAID's (Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), Glucosamine supplements
~Laser therapy: Targets and penetrates muscles, nerves and bones to help with arthritis or other medical conditions
~Physical Rehabilitation: Manages pain or illness related to neurologic or musculoskeletal conditions
~Acupuncture: Controls pain and stimulates the diseased part of the body to help heal itself
~Therapeutic massage: Helps improve muscle and joint function
Prevention is key! Lifelong dental care such as, at home brushing or dental procedures and cleaning will decrease oral mouth pain. Discussing the best nutritional diet for your pet with your vet can help decrease obesity and in the long run osteoarthritis. Regular visits to the vet can make sure everything on the outside as well as the inside is going well with your pet because sometimes they can be subclinical, meaning signs aren't yet obvious!
All Creatures Vet can help your beloved animal get back on track, because their pain is our pain too! We offer individualized patient pain management through laser therapy, pain medications/supplements and acupuncture! Call our office today if you notice any of these common signs and schedule an appointment with one of our doctors to discuss one on one what pain management course is best suited for your pet!