According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), periodontal disease is the most commonly diagnosed problem in dogs and cats. About 80% of dogs and 70% of cats show signs of dental disease by their 3rd birthday.
Plaque, tartar, and bacteria in the mouth may lead to periodontal disease. Periodontal disease not only leads to bad breath, it can also result in painful infections, tooth loss and other serious, even life-threatening health conditions. It can spread through the bloodstream to the heart, liver, and kidneys, and shorten your pet's life. Since gum disease increases the risk for other, more serious health conditions that we've listed, daily home care in conjunction with annual veterinary dental exams and cleanings are essential.
The AVMA recommends daily brushing of your pet's teeth and regular dental checkups. In fact, studies indicate that daily home brushing and regular dental care may add as much as five years to your pet's life!
During your pet's annual examination, we checks your pet's dental health and will recommend a dental cleaning if necessary, as well as give you advice on how to maintain your dog or cat's good oral health. But if you notice plaque and tartar build-up, that your pet has difficulty chewing, has bad breath, or if you have any other oral concerns, schedule an appointment to see your veterinarian right away. Good oral health is a key factor in your pet's overall wellness!
There are numerous benefits to walking your dog! Make sure to keep his or her vaccinations up-to-date, and make walking part of your daily routine this year. Here are just a few good reasons why you should start today.
Dogs need to release energy.
If a dog doesn’t expend extra energy, behavioral issues, such as chewing or separation anxiety, can develop. A tired dog is easier to train than a dog full of energy. Plus during the walks, you can reinforce training such as heeling, sitting, etc. If your pet is a puller, gentle leaders and harnesses can help.
Help prevent your dog from roaming.
During the course of a walk, your dog will be exposed to a variety of smells, sights, and sounds. Getting out of the house is a way to fulfill a dog’s need to roam and improve his/her sense of direction.
Dogs are social animals.
Socializing builds confidence and gives you a chance to show your dog how to interact with other animals in a positive way. While on your walk, you can monitor their behavior from the safety of a leash, while your dog enjoys all the excitement and stimulation, that comes with making new friends!
Walking is good for your dog's health, and your own!
Walking for 30 minutes or more each day can reduce you and your dog's risk of heart disease and other illnesses. It also improves digestive health and helps relieve constipation that may arise as a result of a sedentary lifestyle.
Over half of all dogs suffer with complications due to obesity. Exercise helps prevent and manage chronic diseases by keeping your pet at a healthy weight. Dogs with arthritis and diabetes can benefit greatly from walking.
Bonding with your dog.
Setting aside time for you and your furry friend builds trust and respect. Just like us, dogs need love and attention. Going on routine walks with your dog, can help strengthen your bond, and lead to a long, loving friendship!
Walk your dog regularly.
Regular walks can improve and lengthen your pet’s life. Just like humans, dogs need regular exercise to help improve their heart function, and muscle tone.
SAFETY TIPS TO KEEP IN MIND WHEN WALKING YOUR DOG
Our animal hospital works with pet parents to make sure that their pet is happy and healthy. If you need to get your pet's vaccines up-to-date, or if you have any concerns about your pet's weight or overall health, make an appointment with one of our caring and highly trained vets!
To Our Dear Clients,
Over the last few days, our clinic took in about 2 feet of water. We're thankful that we were able to evacuate our patients and get them home to their owners, and we're thankful that our staff and their families are safe. But due to the damage sustained, our practice will be closed throughout the rest of this week and possibly the next. We will keep everyone posted and will be working our best to be able to open our doors again in order to help our beloved patients.
If your pet needs medical attention, consider these two practices for their care:
Blue Pearl Veterinary Partners
Routine Exam & Vaccination
Grant Road Animal Clinic
We are heartbroken to know that many people and friends in our community have lost so much, but are encouraged by the love and support we see all around us! We feel blessed to be part of this community and will continue to do our best and work hard to help rebuild. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Dr. Rusty Tracy
Did you know that cancer is not just a human condition? It affects our pets as well. In fact, cancer is the number one disease-related killer of dogs and cats. Just like with humans, the sooner the cancer is found the better. During a comprehensive exam, one of the main things we look for are lumps and bumps.
There are few things that will startle you more than discovering a lump or bump on your dog or cat. You may be snuggling or petting your pet to find that there is something there that wasn't there before. Now, not all lumps and bumps on or under your dog or cat’s skin will be cancerous, but there is no way to know for sure without getting your veterinarian involved – this is especially important if the lump is not resolving itself or is growing in size.
Many times the lumps can be “lipomas”, or fat deposits under the skin. They are soft, rounded, non-painful masses, and usually present just under the skin. They are common and usually present no problems. However, A needle aspirate is commonly done and a veterinarian can let you know if the cells are cancerous or not.
In most cases, lipomas do not have to be removed. However, there are occasions tumors grow to a very large size, or are in a location that is causing a pet an issue. In those cases, surgical removal may be recommended.
Types of Lumps and Bumps
Cysts, warts, infected hair follicles, hematomas (blood blisters) and others do cause concern and can create discomfort for the dog, though non-cancerous lumps have less health impact than cancerous growths.
Cancerous growths on dogs can be either malignant or benign. Malignant lumps tend to spread rapidly and can metastasize to other areas of the body. Benign growths tend to stay in the place of origin and do not metastasize; however they can grow quite large, and become difficult to remove (see such an example of inoperable tumor pictured on the right).
How is this diagnosed?
For superficial or subcutaneous lumps, a needle aspirate can be done. In some cases, further diagnostics are needed to determine if a mass has metastisized. Your pet may require ultrasound, CT scan, or radiographs.
Treatment can range from surgical removal to referral to a specialist for chemotherapy and radiation. Sadly, there are times where removal of a limb is necessary if the tumor is aggressive. Your veterinarian will be able to speak with you about the best option of care for your pet.
Take a good surface inventory of your dog or cat today, and take your pet to the veterinarian every year for their physical check- up. Your veterinarian is looking for many things, lumps or bumps just being one of many. If you are in Cypress, Texas, come visit our practice. New clients will get a free comprehensive exam for their pet! Give us a call at 281-970-0601.
What You Need To Know About Canine Influenza
There are many causes of Kennel Cough, both bacterial and viral. As of right now, there are 2 cases of Canine Influenza Virus (CIV) in Spring, TX. Know the facts and bring your pet to get treatment right away if you see symptoms of CIV.
Here is the story from Blue Pearl Specialty and Emergency Hospital in Spring:
"There has been a report of an influenza outbreak in the Southeastern U.S. in the last couple of weeks at large dog shows in Florida and Georgia. It is believed to be the H3N2 variety previously thought to originate in Asia. Some of these dogs traveled from all over the country, so it is feasible that you could see cases.
We currently are treating 2 confirmed cases of influenza in our Spring hospital, and both of these cases were exposed to the Perry, Ga outbreak...."
What is CIV?
CIV is one of the viral causes of kennel cough. It is a highly contagious respiratory disease that has affected thousands of dogs in the US. Because it is a relatively new virus, the majority of dogs have not been exposed to it before.
How is CIV spread?
Dogs of any age, breed and vaccine status are susceptible to this infection. CIV is easily transmitted between dogs through a combination of aerosols, droplets and direct contact with respiratory secretions. The virus does not survive for a long time in the environment, so dogs usually get CIV when they are in close proximity to other infectious dogs.
What are the symptoms of CIV?
Most dogs will have minor symptoms, but some could develop a more severe illness. For this reason it is very important to take them to your veterinarian right away. Be on the look out for the following symptoms:
How do you treat CIV?
If diagnosed and quickly treated, the fatality rate is very low. It is incredibly important that dogs with CIV receive proper veterinary care right away. Treatment includes supportive care and appropriate treatment of secondary infections. While your dog works through the virus, we recommend a few of the following tips:
It can take 10-30 days for most dogs to fight the infection. During that time, secondary infections may develop that require antibiotics and sometimes hospitalization. While the CIV vaccines helps reduce clinical signs of infection, it cannot prevent your dog from getting CIV. If you are concerned that your dog has CIV, contact our clinic at 281-970-0601 or make an appointment conveniently online.
Follow us to read great articles about pet care, office news and more. Have a question or comment? We'd love to hear from you!