Receive 10% off of your pet's dental cleaning in February!
Every FEBRUARY is Dental Health Month at Arrow Springs Animal Hospital.
Your pet's teeth are very important to their overall health. If we noted during your visit the need for your pet to have a dental cleaning and polishing then keep reading!
Dental disease is the most common disease in dogs and cats. Over 68% of all pets over the age of three have some form of periodontal or dental disease, making it by far the most common canine disease.
*Pets need to have their teeth cleaned? Can't I just brush his teeth?
-Brushing your pet's teeth is a great way to prevent dental disease. However, when a pet has signs of dental disease such as red or inflammed gums, bad breath, tartar, or even loose teeth, your pet needs a dental.
*Yuck! My pet's teeth look like the dog in the picture below, maybe even worse! What should I do?
-No worries. Your pet's tartar can be removed with a professional scaling and polishing under anesthesia. Your pet's teeth will then be polished and fluoride will be applied. Some pets may also need to have tooth extractions and/or antibiotics.
*I have an older pet. Is it ok to have her under anesthesia?
-Your pet will have an exam by one of our doctors prior to their dental. Your pet will also have blood work performed to check cell counts and internal organs. If any concerns are noted, one of the doctors will call you. Your pet will be monitored throughout the procedure and until he or she goes home.
*My pet has a healthy smile again! Now what?
-You will pick-up your pet in the afternoon and be greeted by your pet's fresh breath! We will give you instructions on how to brush your pet's teeth. Do not use human dentifrice or toothpaste. You can begin giving special canine toys as well as feeding the newer dental diets and dental treats to help reduce tartar build up.
Please call us at 918-455-7107 to make an appointment. We perform dentals Monday-Friday mornings. Drop-offs start at 7:30a.m. We look forward to seeing you soon.
Randal Burris, DVM, Don Schmidt, DVM
P.S. Want more info? Visit our website at www.gtvets.com to see a short dental care video.
WHAT IS TARTAR AND GINGIVITIS:
Tartar, or dental calculus, is the buildup of food, bacteria, and other residues on your pet's teeth that lead to gum infections or gingivitis.
CAN DIRTY TEETH BE HARMFUL TO MY PET?
Dirty teeth will cause bad breath, eventual loss of teeth due to infections; and may even lead to generalized infections due to bacteria entering the blood stream. Heart diseaseand kidney disease is very common as a result of "dirty teeth."
WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN YOU CLEAN A PET'S TEETH?
A pet is given a physical exam and any needed laboratory work to insure their well-being before the procedure. Then, the pet is sedated with the same medications utilized in human medicine. Teeth are then hand-scaled, cleaned with ultra-sound equipment, and polished, very similar to a human dentist. A fluoride treatment is then applied. Necessary extractions are performed when the teeth's roots have been destroyed by infection.
WHAT IS EXPECTED OF ME?
The pet should have no food after midnight the night before your scheduled appointment. Water is allowed free choice at all times.We request that you bring your pet to the hospital by 8 a.m. so that we can start the procedure early in the morning.
WHAT ABOUT EXTRACTIONS?
Only the veterinarian can determine which teeth should be extracted, and which loose teeth can be saved. This is often impossible to determine until the pet is properly sedated, due to the possible pain in the gum area.
WHAT ABOUT ANTIBIOTICS?
Antibiotics may be given before, and then after the dental cleaning (and possible extractions) to fight any bacteria present. In many severe infections, antibiotics will be prescribed for several days and then an appointment is scheduled for a recheck. Be SURE to continue antibiotics until instructed not to do so! Use the entire contents of any prescribed medications before stopping.
WHAT CAN I DO AT HOME AFTER CLEANING?
Daily use of a pet toothpaste can help to prevent future problems. Many pets (especially over 5 years of age) will require dental cleaning procedures every 6-12 months to maintain optimum oral hygiene.
Call us with any questions or to make an appointment!
-From the veterinarians of Arrow Springs Animal Hospital Dr. Schmidt and Dr. Burris
Moving With Your Pet
Whether it is a four-hour car ride or an overseas move, traveling with your pet can go smoother if you plan ahead and follow a few easy suggestions:
Both dogs and cats require a current rabies vaccination.
The stress of traveling can make your pet more susceptible to disease.
Therefore vaccinations are especially important. Dogs should have DHLP, Parvo, and Bordetella. They should also be on heartworm prevention. Cats should have FVRCP.
State Health Certificates are valid for 10 days but check with your carrier if flying.
International Health Certificates are usually good for 30 days. Your rabies certificate should be carried with you along with the health certificate.
Many areas have quarantine periods for pets, even if they are properly vaccinated. Check with your veterinarian about requirements in your specific destination.
If you are flying, make sure your pet carrier is "Airline Approved." Most airlines require specific reservations for "under-the-seat" carriers. Check with the airline. The appropriate size carrier will allow your pet to stand up, lie down, and turn around comfortably. Acclimate your pet to its carrier well ahead of your travel date. This will make the trip more pleasant for everyone.
Food & Water:
Feeding your pet on the day of travel is not recommended. It merely adds to motion sickness problems. Water should always be available. Take a supply of water with you on car trips to avoid problems from changes in the water content. Take the usual food to avoid sudden diet changes, which often lead to vomiting and/or diarrhea. Stick to a routine feeding schedule.
Make frequent stops (every 2 hours) to walk and water your pet. Never leave a pet unattended in a car, even if the windows are rolled down. Always leash your pet when out of the car to avoid loss or injury,
As well as being considerate of other people. Be sure the pet is wearing a collar with attached rabies tag and ID tag. Be responsible for cleaning up your pet's eliminations-plastic bags.
Some pets need tranquilization for travel to prevent motion sickness or hyper excitability. Discuss this with your veterinarian if you think it might be needed.
Please call us with any questions!
-From the veterinarians of Arrow Springs Animal Hospital Dr. Schmidt and Dr. Burris
Reasons to Adopt an Adult Dog
-With adult dogs, you'll know important things like their full-grown size, personality and grooming requirements. All this information makes it easier to pick the right dog.
-Adult dogs are great at focusing on you because they're calmer than youngsters. Plus, all those years of experience reading humans can help them quickly figure out how to do what you're asking.
-Grownup dogs don't require the constant monitoring puppies do, leaving you with more freedom to watch after young children, work from home, etc.
-Older dogs have already learned what it takes to get along with others and become part of a pack. They'll be part of the family in no time!
-Your floors, shoes and furniture will thank you for adopting a senior pooch! Older dogs are likely to already be housetrained—and even if they're not, they have the physical and mental abilities to pick it up really fast. Seniors also are much less likely to be destructive chewers.
-There are those who hold back adopting a dog because they worry what might happen in their lives in the years to come. Providing a loving home for a dog in her golden years is not a less serious commitment, but it can be a shorter one.
-Older dogs do require exercise but they're not going to need, or want, to run a marathon every day.
-Older dogs are often the last to be adopted. Saving an animal's life offers an unparalleled emotional return on your investment, and you'll feel the rewards every day you spend together.
If you are currently looking to adopt a pet, please visit animalaid.org
-The Veterinarians from Arrow Springs- Dr. Don Schmidt and Dr. Randal Burris
Happy New Year!
Hairballs in Cats
Hairballs, which are spit up, are a common problem seen in cats. Accumulation of hair in the stomach of the cat is a direct result of the significant portion of the cat's life that is spent grooming it. It has been estimated that cats groom themselves for up to 1/3 of their waking hours.
The problem begins as the cat swallows the hair it has licked off during the cleaning process. The barb-like projections on the cat's tongue pull the hair loose from the skin and hair coat. These barbs point inward on the tongue, which causes the hair to remain lodged on the cat's tongue until it is swallowed.
Hair is mostly undigestible and therefore begins to knot up in the stomach. As the hairball enlarges, it is unable to pass out of the stomach down into the small intestine. It then becomes an irritant to the stomach lining eventually being vomited up in most cases. Should the hairball get so large that it cannot pass back up through the opening into the esophagus, it becomes a surgical procedure to get it out.
Signs of "hairballs" include vomiting, constipation, listlessness, and coughing. It frequently causes a loss of appetite and even depression. The regurgitated "hairball" is often not actually round in shape, but rather "tubular."
Finding regurgitated hairballs is a definite sign that your cat has a problem and needs help. Although rarely fatal, hairballs are an inconvenience to cleanup, very uncomfortable for the cat, and can lead to serious complications.
RECOMMENDATIONS FOR PREVENTING HAIRBALLS:
Daily brushing of the cat to remove loose hair is the best prevention. Longhaired breeds especially need special attention. During the spring when all cats shed, daily brushing is most important. After brushing, wipe the cat's haircoat with a damp towel to remove loose hair.
Medications are available to eliminate hairballs and help prevent reoccurrence. Laxatives in the form of Pastes, or even petroleum jelly, have been recommended for many years. There are many different brands available that will be readily accepted by the cat. It is usually recommended the gel be rubbed on the cat's mouth, nose, or even on its feet. It will then be swallowed during the cat's normal grooming process.
Give us a call- 918-455-7107
Healthy Holiday Pet Tips
Christmas Trees- If you will have a real Christmas tree this year, make sure your pet is not able to drink the tree water. Keep the water covered. Sap from pine trees is dangerous if swallowed. Make sure your tree is stable. A secure tree will help to prevent injuries.
After you have decorated your tree, clean up any ornament hooks, ribbon, tinsel, etc. Pets love shiny things but they can get sick from ingesting decorations. Often, surgery is needed to remove these types of items. If you have a particularly curious pet, consider placing only wood or plastic ornaments on the bottom part of your tree.
Remember to turn off or unplug your tree lights when you are not around just in case your pet gets tangled in the lights.
Food- Your pet will be very interested in the delicious smells this time of year but table scraps should be avoided. Chocolate, alcohol, raisins can be toxic. Xylitol, an artificial sweetener, can also be toxic. Bones can cause choking, digestion problems and possibly a blockage which requires surgery.
Decor- Poinsettia, holly and mistletoe can be dangerous to pets. Keep pets away or buy artificial plants. Burning candles that can be tipped over need to be moved out of reach of your pet.
Your pet's holiday- The holiday season can be very busy. Keeping your pet in a routine will help limit your pet's anxiety. Routine walks, feeding, and playtime is comforting. If your pet is shy around company, consider a quiet place for your pet to stay such as a bedroom or even a veterinary clinic to board for the day.
-From the Veterinarians of Arrow Springs Animal Hospital 918-455-7107
WHAT IS IT?
Canine Parvovirus is a viral disease of dogs that was first reported in early 1978. Parvovirus is capable of causing two different sets of clinical problems. The first to be recognized, and most common, is the "intestinal" form, which is manifested by diarrhea; often bloody vomiting, loss of appetite, depression, fever, and sometimes death. The second syndrome, the "cardiac" form, occurs in very young pups and is manifested by an acute inflammation of the heart muscle.
Any age, breed or sex of dog could be affected by Parvovirus. However, infection with Parvovirus does not automatically mean illness. Several factors such as age, environment, stress, parasites and general health status of each individual dog infected could affect the severity of illness. The degree of illness could range from very mild to unapparent to very severe, often resulting in death. The disease is usually more severe in young dogs (less than 6 months of age) or old dogs.
Experts agree that canine Parvovirus is closely related to Parvoviruses that affect other animals. Where the virus originally came from remains unknown, but it is possible that it is a mutant from another Parvovirus that affects other species of animals. Man is not known to be affected by canine Parvovirus. Since its first appearance in 1978, canine Parvovirus has spread to every continent in the world, probably the result of the hardy nature of the virus. It is resistant to extremes of temperature (i.e., it survives freezing and extreme heat) and is unharmed by detergents, alcohols and common disinfectants. Direct transmission occurs when an infected dog comes in contact with a healthy dog. The virus is found in heavy concentration in the infected dog's stool. The virus particles can be easily spread on shoes, clothing and other inanimate objects. Fleas, as well as people, can therefore act as indirect sources of infection. Once it gets a foothold in a kennel, it is difficult to eliminate.
The disease process begins with the oral ingestion of Parvovirus from the feces of an infected dog. The virus initially invades the lymph glands of the throat (lymph nodes and tonsils) where it multiplies. Following multiplication in the lymph glands for l to 2 days, the virus then enters the blood stream, which causes the VIREMIA phase (virus in the blood).
This phase is characterized by massive amounts of virus in the dog's bloodstream, which in turn is spread to all parts of the body, such as, the intestine, bone marrow, spleen, other lymph nodes and the heart (in young pups less than 8 weeks of age). As infection spreads, the symptoms of illness become apparent. (See "symptoms" in next section). The Viremia phase can last for approximately l to 9 days.
The final phase in the cycle is the contagious or "shedding" phase. As many as 30 billion Parvovirus particles can be shed from the intestines of an infected dog in every ounce of stool. The highest concentration of virus in the stool is seen when the infected dog is showing signs of illness. A dog can, however, be a source of infection to other dogs without having observable signs of illness. Transmission can occur for at least 3 weeks after a dog becomes infected with the virus. Chronic "carriers" are not know to exist as in other virus disease. Parvovirus in the environment can infect susceptible dogs for many months once shed in the stool.
What are the symptoms?
The symptoms below indicate a problem warranting medical attention. Early, vigorous treatment of illness caused by canine Parvovirus infection is imperative since vomiting and diarrhea can lead to dehydration and chemical imbalance in the body. If your dog shows these signs, see your veterinarian. Early treatment can save lives.
Cardiac Form (less than 8 weeks of age)
Crying, difficulty breathing, gasping for breath
Unwillingness to nurse
Intestinal Form (any age dog affected, but more severe in puppies).
Loss of appetite
Fever (above 103 degrees F)
Diarrhea with or without blood (more serious if blood present)
Low white blood count
How is it controlled?
Control of Parvovirus by sanitation measures alone is extremely difficult because the virus is such a resistant, hardy organism and because it is so easily spread. Contact with other dogs and especially their stool, should be minimized. Clorox diluted one part to 30 parts with water has been effective in disinfecting inanimate objects such as clothing, floors, kennels, etc. However, it is impractical, if not impossible, to disinfect public streets, parks, etc. Isolation of infected dogs is another method of control, although moderately effective. Both of these measures will help reduce the amount of contagious virus in the environment, but only vaccination will control the actual source of infection, the contagious shedding dog.
The most effective control measure for canine Parvovirus disease. A properly immunized dog will have circulating antibodies in the blood that will destroy Parvovirus following exposure.
Maternal antibodies are antibodies against Parvovirus, which are passed from the mother to the puppies through the "first milk" or colostrum. They provide the puppy with an immediate temporary or "passive" immunity. The mother obtains these antibodies from prior vaccination or by natural exposure to Parvovirus. However, maternal antibody is a two-edged sword; it protects the puppy against disease early in life, but it also blocks active immunization. In the case of Parvovirus, maternal antibody can interfere with vaccination for as long as 14 to 16 weeks of age in some pups. A refractory period can exist in some pups where very low, almost undetectable levels of maternal antibody will inhibit the vaccination process but will not prevent Parvovirus infection. Since the level of maternal antibody varies from puppy to puppy, it is important to begin vaccination at an early age and repeat every 2-3 weeks until the puppy is at least 16 - 18 weeks old.
-The Veterinarians of Arrow Springs Animal Hospital 918-455-7107
Recent advances in veterinary medical science have resulted in an increase in the number and type of vaccines that are available for use in cats, and improvements are continuously being made in safety and efficacy. Some vaccines are more or less routinely advocated for all cats ('core' vaccines) whereas others are used more selectively according to circumstances. However, in all cases the selection of the correct vaccination program for each individual cat, including the frequency of repeat, booster, vaccinations, requires professional advice.
Currently cats can be vaccinated against several different diseases:
Feline panleukopenia, FPL (feline infectious enteritis) caused by FPL virus or feline parvovirus.
Feline viral rhinotracheitis, FVR caused by FVR virus or herpes virus type 1, FHV-1.
Feline caliciviral disease caused by various strains of Feline caliciviruses, FCV.
For cats in households where one or more cats go outside, we recommend the feline leukemia vaccine. Other vaccines, such as FIP, Giardia, and Feline bordetella, are not considered essential, and are not generally recommend.
Also vaccines come in various combinations, so that protection against more than one disease is achieved in a single injection or administration (some vaccines are given by drops into the nose rather than by needle). We will advise you on the most appropriate vaccines for your cat. Other vaccines, such as FIP, Giardia, and feline bordetella, are not considered essential, not generally recommended.
How do vaccines work? Vaccines work by stimulating the body's defense mechanisms (the immune system) to a particular microorganism or microorganisms (virus, bacteria, or other). The animal's immune system is then prepared to react to a future infection with that microorganism(s) and either prevent infection or respond and eliminate the microorganism and give rapid recovery. Thus, vaccination mimics or simulates the protection or immunity that a pet has once it has recovered from natural infection with a particular infectious agent. The immune system is a complex interaction of various cells and tissues and organs in an animal but the cells mainly involved are the white blood cells and main tissues are the lymphoid tissues such as the lymph nodes or lymph glands. One of the most important components of the immune system is the production of specific protein molecules called antibodies. A specific microorganism, such as Feline Panleukopenia Virus, has components called antigens that induce the immune system to produce antibody that specifically binds and neutralizes that organism and no other. Antibodies work together with other white blood cells (lymphocytes) that are able to identify and kill, within the body, those cells that have become infected by the microorganism. The involvement of lymphocytes and other immune system cells in immunity is called cell-mediated immunity. After vaccination, just as after recovery from natural infection, the body 'remembers' the particular antigens so that when they are encountered again it can mount a rapid and strong immune response preventing the cat from developing the disease. The duration of this response varies with the disease, the type of vaccine and other variables. The likely duration will determine the recommended revaccination date.
It is important to realize that most vaccines work by preventing your cat from becoming ill during a subsequent exposure to specific disease-causing organisms, but vaccination may not prevent the cat from becoming infected. In such cases the cat, while itself protected against disease, may shed the organism for a period of time after exposure and be capable of infecting susceptible animals with which it is in contact. This is not a major consideration in the pet cat but may be important in the breeding colony.
What is the difference between the various types of vaccine?Three major types of vaccine are produced for use in cats.
1. Modified live vaccines- these vaccines contain live organisms that are weakened (attenuated) or genetically modified so that they do not produce disease but will multiply in the cat's body. Live vaccines are generally considered to cause a stronger, longer lasting immunity than inactivated vaccines, but there is continuous improvement in all vaccines. It is not advisable to use modified live vaccines in pregnant queens or cats whose immune system is not working properly (cats infected by feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), etc.).
2. Killed (inactivated) vaccines - these vaccines are prepared using fully virulent organisms or genetically modified organisms that have been killed by various treatments. Because, on their own, they do not give such a high level of protection as the live, replicating type of vaccine, killed vaccines may have an 'adjuvant' added to enhance immune stimulation.
3. Subunit vaccines - These are vaccines in which the infectious organism has been broken apart and only certain parts are included in the vaccine. In some cases this is achieved by using genetic engineering techniques prior to the fragmentation.
When should my kitten be vaccinated? Generally kittens are vaccinated for the first time at between 8 and 10 weeks and a second dose is given at 12 weeks. A kitten will not be fully protected until 7-10 days after the second vaccination. Under specific circumstances we may advise an alternative regime.
How often should booster vaccinations be given? At Arrow Springs, the first Rabies is boostered at 1 year, then every 3 years. Feline Herpes, Panleukopenia, and calicivirus is given every 3 years. Feline Leukemia vaccine is given yearly.
Will vaccination always protect my cat?Vaccination will protect the vast majority of cats but under some circumstance vaccine breakdowns will occur. Reasons for such breakdowns or apparent 'vaccine failure' include:
Variations between different strains of viruses: This is particularly a problem for example with FCV infections, where, like the "common cold" in people, there are a large number of different strains. Some of these strains are not covered or only partially cross-protected by available vaccines.
-Maternally derived antibodies: When a kitten is born and after it suckles its mother, it is acquires a proportion of antibodies from the mother. A well vaccinated queen cat will pass on some antibodies to the diseases she has been vaccinated against, and any others she has acquired naturally. Such antibodies protect the kitten against those diseases for the first two or three months of life, arguably the most critical period. However, during this same period, the maternally-derived antibodies can block the effects of vaccination of the kitten. This blocking effect decreases as the maternal antibodies gradually disappear over those two to three months. A point in time is reached when vaccination can be successfully given. Unfortunately, this point varies between kittens, mainly because the amount of maternal antibodies that each kitten receives is variable. This is part of the reason that two vaccinations are usually given two to four weeks apart in the kitten vaccination program.
-The cat was stressed or not completely healthy at the time of vaccination: 'Stress' can prevent a good response to vaccination. For this reason it is better to let a kitten settle in its new home for 5-7 days before a vaccination is given, and the physical examination before vaccinating helps ensure the cat is healthy at that time.
-The cat has been exposed to an excessive challenge dose of virus or bacteria in its environment and this has been sufficient to overwhelm the immunity.
-The immune system of the cat is under-performing because of some other disease, or complications associated with advanced age.
These are not the only reasons for vaccination failure but they are the most likely explanations.
If you feel your cat has contracted an infection for which it has been vaccinated then let us know so tests can be undertaken to try and establish why vaccination has failed to be protective.
What are the risks of vaccination? There are very few risks to vaccination. We will be able to advise you on specific details concerning your pet. You may notice your cat has a temporary loss of appetite or is less lively a day or two after a vaccination, but this should resolve within 24 to 48 hours. In a very few cats, they may be allergic to one or more components of the vaccine and have more serious side effects such as difficulty in breathing, vomiting or diarrhea. If these signs occur, let us know immediately. A rare form of soft tissue sarcoma has been associated with a reaction to vaccine or vaccine components in a very small number of cats. Studies are in progress on this, but the benefits of vaccination greatly outweigh these small risks for most situations.
Feline leukemia virus (FeLV) infection This virus is widespread and infection of outdoor cats or cats in infected catteries is common. The vast majority of persistently infected cats will die either from tumors or as a consequence of the immunosuppression caused by the viral infection. Current vaccines provide a good level of protection and do not interfere with routine testing for the virus in breeding colonies. Because the virus tends to take many months before it causes disease, infected cats can appear completely normal and healthy. For this reason your veterinarian may suggest your cat have a blood test to make sure it is not infected before vaccination. Despite vaccination, a few cats will still become infected with the virus.
Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP) This is an uncommon disease although cases occur from time to time almost everywhere but infection with the causative and related viruses (coronaviruses) are common. We do not understand why a few infections lead to fatal disease whereas the majority cause minor illness. Vaccines are advised in some cases.
Rabies This is such an important disease because of the almost 100% fatality rate of cases once symptoms occur, and because of its potential transmission to people by bites from infected animals. Rabies vaccination is an essential part of the vaccination program for all cats. We will discuss the frequency of booster vaccinations needed for your cat.
REGULAR VACCINATION IS AN IMPORTANT PART OF ROUTINE HEALTH CARE FOR YOUR CAT AND HELPS TO ENSURE YOUR CAT REMAINS FIT AND WELL.
Is it time for your cat's vaccines? Give us a call and find out about three-year vaccines.
-The Veterinarians of Arrow Springs Animal Hospital 918-455-7107
Don't offer raw or undercooked turkey, which may contain salmonella bacteria.
Sage and many other herbs contain essential oils and resins that can cause gastrointestinal upset and central nervous system depression to pets if eaten in large quantities. Cats are especially sensitive to the effects of certain essential oils.
Don't feed your pet raw bread dough. When raw bread dough is ingested, an animal's body heat causes the dough to rise in his stomach. As it expands, the pet may have vomiting, abdominal pain and bloating, which could become a life-threatening emergency, requiring surgery.
Be sure your pets keep their noses out of any batter, especially if it includes raw eggs. The eggs could contain salmonella bacteria that may lead to food poisoning.
While you and your family are feasting, give your cat and dog their own little feast. Offer them made-for-pet chew bones or pet treats. NO TURKEY BONES! You can also stuff their usual dinner—perhaps with sweet potato or green beans—inside a Kong toy. They'll be happily occupied for awhile, working hard to extract their dinner from the toy. Just remember, it is best to keep pets on their regular diets even during the holidays.
-From the Veterinarians of Arrow Springs Animal Hospital 918-455-7107
What Is Ringworm?
A microscopic fungal organism that results in skin disease in animals and humans causes ringworm.
What Is The Most Important Cause In Cats?
Microsporum canis is the main fungus responsible for 98% of cat fungal skin infections.
How Is Ringworm Spread?
Ringworm is spread by direct contact with an infected animal (or person), or with infected bedding and grooming tools.
Can Ringworm Be Spread To Other Species Of Animals?
Yes. The fungal organisms that cause ringworm are very contagious and can be spread from pet to pet, pet to human, or human to pet.
What Are The Signs Of Ringworm?
Early signs include dry, flaky skin, broken hair, and bald patches on ears, front legs and around the eyes. More advanced signs include crusty lesions and infected areas that become red and sore.
Why Is This Disease Called "Ringworm?"
Healing of the infected areas occurs from the center out, creating a ring effect, thus the name "ringworm."
If My Pet Does Not Show Signs Of Ringworm, Does That Mean It's Not Infected?
NO!!! Many cats do not show clinical signs of ringworm but are CARRIERS!
Which Cats Are Most Susceptible To Ringworm?
Ringworm is most common in young cats, and in cats with debilitating diseases.
How Does The Fungus Survive?
By invading the growing hair shaft and feeding on the protein contained in the hair and skin.
Please call us with any questions or concerns.
-The Veterinarians of Arrow Springs Animal Hospital 918-455-7107
Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease of dogs and other mammals that particularly affects the liver or kidneys. There are many species of Leptospira and the traditional types affecting dogs are Leptospira canicola and L. icterohemorrhagiae. In recent years other species have become important in some areas. These "serovars" includeL. pomona,L. grippotyphosa, L. australis, and L. bratislava. There are other serovars that may infect dogs without apparently causing any signs or disease.
How common is leptospirosis?
Infections of dogs with L. icterohemorrhagiae and L. canicola are uncommon in areas where widespread vaccination of dogs has been practiced for many years. Outbreaks of the disease are still seen from time to time. As mentioned above, these may now involve serovars of Leptospira that have not traditionally been recognized in dogs, and which are not protected against by the traditional vaccines.
How are dogs infected?
Leptospira bacteria are carried mainly by rats and other rodents, but can also affect almost any mammalian species, including people. Infected or recovered "carrier" dogs can also act as a source of the infection. Ingestion of infected urine or rodent-contaminated garbage is the most important means of transmission, but some forms of the bacteria can penetrate damaged or thin skin. For instance, when dogs swim in contaminated water, they may become infected through their skin. The incubation period (from infection to onset of clinical signs) is usually 4-12 days.
What are the signs of leptospirosis?
Many infections go undetected, but other cases can be life-threatening. Certain strains (serovars) of Leptospira are more likely to be associated with disease than other strains, and the icterohemorrhagiae serovar is perhaps the most dangerous.
There are three main forms of the disease: hemorrhagic (bleeding), icteric or jaundice (liver), and renal (kidney).
In hemorrhagic disease there is high fever with lethargy and loss of appetite. Multiple small hemorrhages occur in the mouth and on the whites of the eyes. Bloody diarrhea and vomiting may occur. This form is often fatal.
The jaundice form begins much like the hemorrhagic form and many of the signs are the same. It differs in the presence of a yellow color (jaundice or icterus) in the mouth and whites of the eyes. In severe cases the skin will turn yellow.
The renal form causes kidney failure. These dogs are very lethargic, anorectic, and may vomit. Their breath may have a very offensive odor, and ulcers often develop on the tongue. Other signs include diarrhea, excessive drinking (polydipsia) and excessively frequent urination (polyuria). There may be red staining of the urine (blood). The dog may be reluctant to move and show abdominal discomfort. Fever is variable and temperature may actually be subnormal in the more advanced stage. Dogs that survive the acute renal form may be left with chronic kidney disease.
How is leptospirosis diagnosed?
Because the clinical signs are variable and easily confused with other diseases, definite diagnosis can be difficult. There are no readily available rapid and definitive laboratory tests. Taking blood samples during infection and again in the recovery period and showing an increase in antibodies to Leptospira in the blood serum (at least a four-fold increase in antibody titer) is supportive of the diagnosis. A single test finding of Leptospira antibody, even if the level (titer) is high, may not mean that the dog has Leptospirosis because infection with less harmful serovars can still result in high antibody.
What is the treatment?
Antibiotics are reasonably effective if begun early. Most affected dogs require intensive care in the veterinary hospital. An extended course of antibiotics may be prescribed even in the recovery period to ensure that all the Leptospira organisms are cleared and the dog does not become a chronic carrier.
How can leptospirosis be prevented?
The vaccine for leptospirosis is not always part of the routine vaccination program for all dogs. Your veterinarian will consider the risks and options for your pet. Annual boosters may be needed to maintain best immunity.
Can the vaccine cause side-effects?
Of the components of a dog's vaccination program, the portion for leptospirosis has been the more likely to cause a reaction. This usually takes the form of lethargy for a few days and possibly loss of appetite. But in some dogs (Miniature Dachshunds and West Highland White Terriers seem to have slightly increased risk) a more general shock-like reaction may occur shortly after vaccination. Other dogs may develop a skin rash (urticaria), apparent on hairless areas. These reactions can be controlled medically, so if you are concerned call your veterinarian immediately. Modern vaccine production methods, such as the use of "sub-unit' or genetically manufactured vaccines may reduce the incidence of side effects.
NOTE: Leptospirosis can be transmitted to people, so owners of dogs that may have the disease should avoid contact between the owner's bare skin and their dog's urine, and wear rubber gloves when cleaning up any areas the dog may have soiled. Any areas where the dog has urinated should be disinfected. The organism is readily killed by household disinfectants or dilute bleach solution.
-From the Veterinarians at Arrow Springs Animal Hospital
Why should I have my pet neutered?
Neutering should be considered if you are keeping any male dog as a pet. Tulsa County, City of Tulsa and the City of Broken Arrow, to name a few areas, all require neutering of pets.
What are the advantages of neutering my male dog?
Reduces the risk of prostate cancer and prostatitis
Reduces the risk of hormone-related diseases such as perianal adenoma
Eliminates the risk of testicular cancer
Removal of sexual urge which results in less roaming behaviors
Reduction of certain types of aggression
Is neutering performed for any other reason?
The operation may be performed to treat testicular tumors and some prostate gland conditions. It is also used to control hormonal (testosterone) dependent diseases. Neutering may also be used in an attempt to treat certain forms of aggression.
What are the disadvantages?
Most of the perceived disadvantages are false. The most quoted of these are that the dog will become fat, characterless, and useless as a guard. Obesity is probably the most commonly quoted disadvantage of neutering. Obesity is the result of overfeeding. By regulating your dog's diet and caloric intake, you can prevent obesity in neutered or intact males. Neutering does not cause a change in personality, guarding instincts, intelligence, playfulness, and affection.
When should the operation be performed?
Research reveals that neutering a pet at an early age does not cause any increased risk. We recommend neutering at six months of age.
Are there any dangers associated with the operation?
Neutering is considered a major operation and requires general anesthesia. With today's modern anesthetics and monitoring equipment, the risk of a complication is very low.
What happens when I leave my dog for this procedure?
Your pet will be examined and pre-anesthetic blood tests are usually performed. If everything is acceptable, your pet will then be anesthetized. Most pets will have an intravenous catheter placed to administer the anesthetic and to provide fluid therapy during the surgery. After your pet is anesthetized, a breathing tube will be placed in his trachea. This will allow us to deliver oxygen and the gas anesthetic. We usually use absorbable sutures so that no sutures will have to be removed.
Are there any post-operative precautions I should take?
Rest and restriction of activity are the primary post-operative care. Most dogs can resume normal activity five to ten days after surgery. Remember to leash walk your pet to avoid running while outdoors. If your pet must be alone, consider keeping him in a kennel to limit his activity while you are gone.
We perform neuters Monday-Friday. Please give us a call for questions or if you would like to make an appointment.
-Veterinarians from Arrow Springs Animal Hospital 918-455-7107
THE FACTS ABOUT RABIES
Oklahoma is currently experiencing a higher than normal number of confirmed positive rabid animal cases, including seven rabid dog cases this year, as well as a number of horses, cattle, goats, a fox and 30+ cases of rabies in skunks.
Rabies is a viral disease of mammals that causes encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) and is nearly 100% fatal once the virus enters the brain. It is spread primarily through the bite of an infected animal. The virus advances slowly via the nervous system from the site of the bite to the brain of the bite victim. Less common routes of exposure include the exposure of cuts in the skin or mucus membranes of the eyes, nose, or mouth to saliva, brain, or spinal fluid of an infected animal. Rabies cannot be spread through scratching or contact with blood, urine, vomit, feces, etc. of an infected animal.
Because of the slow advance of the virus in a bite victim, there is usually time to stop infection by a series of vaccinations. The Oklahoma State Department of Health has excellent website-based information at the site www.ok.gov. Search this site under the topic "Rabies" to learn more. The following information is from that website:
After any animal bite:
1) Wash all bite wounds immediately with soap and water, and continue washing for at least ten minutes.
2) Contact your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Animal bite wounds contain bacteria, so a tetanus booster and/or antibiotics may be needed.
3) If possible, safely catch or restrain the animal. Your local animal control or sheriff may be of assistance. Or, if the animal has an owner, get information about the animal's history of rabies vaccination and contact information about the owner.
4) Call the local county health department sanitarian to report animal bites. The sanitarian will help confirm the animal's condition and rabies vaccine status.
5) If a rodent or rabbit caused the bite, these are very low risk and rabies post-exposure vaccination (of the bite victim) is usually not recommended.
-If the biting animal was a dog, cat or ferret (not owned by the victim and not currently vaccinated by a licensed veterinarian), the animal should be quarantined with a licensed veterinarian for ten days.
-Dogs, cats and ferrets (not owned by the bite victim and currently vaccinated by a licensed veterinarian) may be allowed to be quarantined by the animal owner.
-If the biting dog, cat or ferret dies or is euthanized during the ten-day quarantine, it should be tested for rabies.
6) If the dog, cat or ferret remains healthy after ten days, it was not infectious with rabies at the time the bite occurred.
7) If another species of animal caused the bite, the local county health department sanitarian should be contacted.
More information is available at the Oklahoma State Department of Health website. Of particular interest may be subjects such as: What to do if you pet is bitten by another animal?; What if the bite is on the face, neck or head?
What about bats? Bites from a bat may be unnoticed, as the bat's teeth are extremely small. Your local health department sanitarian can guide you in determining your rabies risk from an encounter with a bat.
The best protection is vaccination of our pets and livestock. Oklahoma state law requires that all dogs, cats and ferrets be immunized against rabies by or under the supervision of a veterinarian by the age of four months. It is also recommended that horses and other valuable livestock be vaccinated against rabies.
Only rabies vaccines given by a licensed veterinarian are recognized by the health department.
Please call your veterinarian to schedule your pet's immunizations.
Ticks promise to be in large numbers this year, according to parasitologists. The mild winter we just had, combined with our record population of deer, the natural host of many tick species, provides the nearly ideal environment for ticks to multiply.
Ticks can transmit a number of diseases which can affect pets, as well as people. Among these are Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, Lyme Disease, Ehrlichia and Anaplasmosis. Symptoms for Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever usually show up within days of a tick bite, but most other tick-borne illnesses may not manifest for days or weeks. Also, many tick stages are so small they may go unnoticed, particularly in a thick-coated outdoor dog. Thus, diagnosing a tick-borne illness can be difficult, especially when ticks may go unnoticed.
The best way to avoid tick-borne illness in pets and people is prevention. For people, apply repellents such as DEET before venturing into woods, tall grass, or brushy areas. Also, inspect yourself and family members carefully after such an outing. Remember, DEET cannot be used on pets.
To protect pets, clear away brush, weeds and tall grass. Contrary to popular belief, ticks do not drop from trees. Rather, they climb to the top of a blade of grass or other plant, and wait for a potential host to brush against them.
Finally, regularly use commercial topical tick control products such as Advantix or Preventic collars. Pay close attention to the label-size matters! And some products can not be used on cats.
One interesting side note on the topical tick control products: Many work by hyperstimulating the ticks nervous system. They detach and begin to crawl rapidly. I have received a number of calls from clients who claimed that they saw a few ticks, applied a topical product, and now see "ticks crawling everywhere." That means the product is working! Within a few hours those ticks will be dead.
Don't wait until you see ticks to begin prevention. Apply products now and continue year-round. Our mild winters do not adequately kill off ticks and allow us to stop prevention, especially on outdoor pets.
Signs of a tick-borne illness may include, fever, lethargy,muscle and joint pain, bruising, nose-bleed, or other unexplained hemorrhage. If you suspect a tick-borne illness, or see any of those symptoms, please call for an appointment.
When attempting to remove a tick, grasp close to the skin with tweezers. Wear gloves and wash the area with soap and water afterwards. If a large number of ticks are attached to your pet, call for an appointment.
Do not apply vaseline, nail polish or use a lit or unlit match. These do not work, and may cause the tick to deposit more disease-carrying saliva.
Please call our office if you have any questions about ticks or any other pet-related questions.
Randal Burris, DVM
March 6, 2012
What is a cherry eye?
Cherry eye is a common term used to describe the prolapse of the gland of the membrana nictitans. Huh?! Dogs, unlike people, have three eyelids per eye-the upper, the lower as well as a third eyelid, also known as the membrana nictitans. This third eyelid attaches at the corner of the eye and appears like a pink membrane. It provides additional protections especially from dust, airborne particles, and other foreign material.
Within the membrana, nictitans is a gland which will occasionally enlarge and protrude from under the third eyelid, like a small pink or red cherry, hence the term "cherry eye". This is usually seen in young dogs; and certain breeds such as cocker spaniels and bulldogs seem to be more prone to this gland prolapse.
Performing "Cherry eye" surgery
Various surgeries exist to address this problem. Most veterinary ophthalmologists, eye doctors, agree that the gland should NOT be surgically removed except as a last resort. Removing the gland may result in the under production of tears and eventual damage to the eye. Instead, the surgeon should attempt to reposition the gland back inside the third eyelid. Post surgical complications such as swelling, can be addressed with eye drops, oral medication, and the use of E-collars to prevent trauma to the eye as it heals.
Patient recovering from "Cherry eye" surgery
Occasionally the gland may re-prolapse requiring additional surgery and only if all else fails removal of the gland. If you are concerned your pet may have a cherry eye or for any other questions, give us a call. Randal Burris, DVM
My pet has fleas. What can I do to help my pet?
Successful flea control involves eliminating fleas from your pet and controlling fleas in the environment. Dogs and cats share the same fleas. All pets in your home should be on flea prevention. There are many choices for flea control these days so discuss with your veterinarian which product would be the most appropriate for you pet. Remember, cats can only use cat products. Using a dog product for fleas on a cat can have dangerous side effects.
For cats, we recommend Revolution which is a topical product for not only fleas but for intestinal parasites, ear mites and heartworms. It is applied once a month. This is a prescription product; your pet must have seen the veterinarian within one year when the product is purchased.
For dogs we recommend Advantix. Advantix is a topical solution applied monthly for the prevention of fleas, ticks, and mosquito bites. We also sell Comfortis which is a monthly pill for flea control. Comfortis must be given with a meal. Advantix and Comfortis are not heartworm preventions, so your dog will still have to take a monthly pill to protect against heartworm disease and intestinal parasites. Trifexis is the Comfortis product combined with a heartworm prevention to give protection against fleas, heartworms, and intestinal worms in one pill. Comfortis and Trifexis are both prescriptions.
To treat the pet's environment, we recommend vacuuming the carpet to stimulate the pre-adult fleas to emerge. Be sure to empty your vacuum container or throw away your vacuum bag. Ask your veterinarian which home product they recommend for you. Bayer, who makes Advantix, also makes products for treating the home and yard.
Outdoor areas need to be treated as well. Concentrate on dark, shaded areas. Spray a product containing an IGR or Insect Growth Regulators every 14-21 days for three to five applications.
Deworming- Nearly all puppies are born with intestinal parasites such as roundworm and hookworm, whether the mother was dewormed or not. The reason for this is the life-cycle of the parasites. Both roundworms and hookworms spend the majority of their life in the migratory phase. Immature larval worms migrate through the tissues of the body until they eventually make their way into the lungs, from which they are coughed up, swallowed, and develop into adult worms in the intestines which lay eggs that can be found via a microscopic examination of the pup's feces. This migration of parasites has a number of implications. Dewormers are not very effective against the migratory phase. Therefore, mothers can pass the worms to their pups in utero, or to nursing pups in milk. That's why nearly all puppies have worms.
More importantly, these parasites may, on occasion, infect people, especially children, through exposure to eggs or hatched larvae in the soil. A child who plays in dirt in which an infected dog had defecated weeks before may be infected by hookworm larvae penetrating the soles of wet feet, or by hookworm or roundworm eggs from teh soil on their hands entering the mouth when the child eats or drinks. The larvae can migrate to major organs such as the liver or eye.
The way to protect ourselves is to deworm our puppies at least 3 times with four weeks between dewormings. This allows migratory phases of the worms to develop into adult in the intestines susceptible to our dewormers. Following this, if we keep our pets on monthly parasite prevention for heartworm, this will also help protect against hookworm and roundworms.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends at least 3 rounds of dewormer for puppies and kittens, in order to protect our childre. Other precautions include: wearing gloves when gardening, restricting where our pets are allowed to defecate, cleaning pet droppings from the yard, and washing our heands after handling pet feces or soil.
Please see your veterinarian to set up a series of "well-puppy" visits for that new family member. A happy healthy puppy is a joy to all who meet him. Feel free to post any questions.
Congratulations! That bouncy, energetic, lovable ball of fluff is now a member of your family. This is the start of a wonderful relationship that will provide both of you hours of companionship and devotion. I once read a quote that dogs make great friends because they wag their tails instead of their tongues. That new puppy will need a number of things during its first year. I'd like to cover vaccines and deworming.
Vaccines- Vaccines stimulate the immune system by providing either a killed or attenuated (weakened) version of disease-causing, microorganisms to the pet. The activated immune system is then able to protect the pet from the possibly life-threatening version of these diseases. The reasons puppies receive so many vaccines their first year are two-fold. One reason is to boost the immune system. By giving vaccines between 2 and 4 weeks apart, the immune response is enhanced. The second and most important reason puppies receive several rounds of vaccines is to time the moment when the individual puppy's immune system is competent to respond to the vaccine. This time to respond to the vaccine. This time is different for every individual, but lies somewhere between 6 and 16 weeks of age. Prior to 6 weeks of age, antibodies from the mother circulate in the bloodstream of the puppy, protecting it from any disease for which the mother was protected, but also blocking any vaccine give to the puppy. That's why any vaccine given before 6 weeks of age is useless. Since this maternal antibody wears off at different times for different puppies, we begin vaccinating at 6 to 8 weeks and continue every 3-4 weeks until 4 months of age. This will help ensure that vaccines are given at the critical moment when the puppy's immune system can respond. Please watch for the next posting about deworming. Randal Burris, DVM
Pets with ear mites often have black or brown debris in the ear and the pet is very itchy. Ear mites are not as common as say a yeast infection in the ears. Ear mites are more commonly found in puppies and kittens rather than adults. We offer a one-time only treatment for ear mites so there is usually no need for owners to treat at home. If you can stomach it, check out this microscopic view of an ear mite.
It depends on the breed and size of your pet. Obesity leads to several diseases both in pets and people. Type II diabetes, heart disease and arthritis are the most common weight-related disorders. Diet and weight reduction are the key to ensuring your pet lives a healthy, long life. Obesity is defined as weighing more than 30% of the ideal weight. With humans, this is fairly straightforward and can be determined by consulting weight and height charts. Dogs and cats are often diagnosed as obese by a combinations of weight charts and body scoring.
GO TO THIS SITE TO SEE AN EXAMPLE OF HEALTHY AND UNHEALTHY BODY CONDITIONS.
There are multiple reasons for foul breath. Reasons can include serious medical problems, such as kidney failure or diabetes, or can be as simple as eating something smelly. Remember, our furry friends don't brush and floss!By far, the most common reason for bad breath is due to plaque, tartar and decay of teeth and gums. If your pet consistently has bad breath, a visit to your veterinarian is due. Dental plaque and tarter removal is accomplished by placing your pet under anesthesia, the plaque is then scaled off, both on the tooth surface and under the gums. Next, the teeth are polished, and many clinics apply fluoride.
Once your pet's oral health has been restored, you can help maintain their clean teeth. Brushing is still the best method. Use soft-bristled brushes or finger-brushes and toothpaste made for pets. Children's toothpaste can be used, but don't use adult paste, as pets don't spit! If your pet won't stand for brushing, there are many other products that help reduce the build-up of plaque; rinses, chew-bones and even special foods that can help.
For more information, please visit our web-site: GTVets.com