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Pain Management and Control

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We know the issue of pain management is of great concern to pet owners today. As in human medicine, we have a variety of medications as well as low level laser therapy available to manage your pet’s pain both before and after surgery and in the event of trauma. We would be pleased to discuss the options available to you and your pet under any of the above circumstances.

veterinarian handing out cliented online article

Pet Health Resources

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Has your pet been diagnosed with a condition that you are unfamiliar with? Are you interested in learning more about how a particular drug works? Would you like more information or advice on behavior, nutrition, or administering medications? We are always here to discuss these topics and more, but sometimes you may want to investigate or explore on your own, which is why we provide an extensive collection of pet health information.

Considering the wide availability of information on the Internet, it can be difficult to differentiate between what’s trustworthy and what’s not. The Pet Health section of our website contains accurate, current, and reliable information on a wide variety of topics. Feel free to search through our articles, educational programs, tips, and videos, and contact us with any questions you might have.

flea

Flea Prevention and Control

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Fleas can cause problems for pets ranging from minor to life-threatening. Not only can these parasites cause severe itching, irritation, and allergies, but they can also transmit tapeworms and diseases. Fleas can infest dogs, cats, ferrets, mice, and rats. And fleas don’t just stay on pets; they can bite people, too. For more information, contact us or see the flea article in the Pet Health Library on our site.

You don’t want these blood-sucking parasites on your pet or in your home. We can help keep them away, or help you get rid of them if they’ve already found their way inside. Call us to find out how to eliminate and control fleas or to start your pet on a preventive today.

heartworm diagram

Heartworm Prevention

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When they bite, mosquitoes can transmit heartworm infection, and those heartworms can wreak havoc on your dog or cat. These parasites can severely, and sometimes fatally, damage the heart, lungs, and blood vessels. Some pets may not show any signs of infection at all or for several years; in those that do, symptoms can vary widely.

In dogs, signs of heartworm disease can range from coughing, fatigue, and weight loss to difficulty breathing and a swollen abdomen (caused by fluid accumulation from heart failure). Canine heartworm infection can also lead to a life-threatening complication called “caval syndrome” (a form of liver failure); without prompt surgical intervention, this condition usually causes death.

Although often thought to not be susceptible to heartworm infection, cats can indeed get heartworms. Cats can suffer from a syndrome referred to as heartworm-associated respiratory disease (HARD); the symptoms can be subtle and may mimic those of asthma or allergic bronchitis. Signs of respiratory distress, such as rapid or difficult breathing, wheezing, and panting, are common. Other symptoms include coughing, vomiting (typically unrelated to eating), and loss of appetite or weight. Heartworm infection is more difficult to diagnose in cats than it is in dogs.

Treatment for heartworm infection is far more expensive than prevention—and it can actually kill your dog. There is no approved treatment for cats. Some cats spontaneously rid themselves of the infection; others might not survive it, and even one or two adult heartworms in a cat can cause serious problems.

Fortunately, there’s an easy way to keep your dog or cat safe: by administering monthly heartworm preventives. Most heartworm medications also protect your pet against other parasites, such as roundworms, hookworms, whipworms, ear mites, fleas, and ticks. We can recommend the best regimen of prevention for your pet.

Microchip Pet Identification

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Canada is fortunate to have a standardized microchipping system for pets. CFHS is a founding member of the National Companion Animal Coalition, which created a national standard for microchipping in the early 1990s. This standard was revised over the last few years to better reflect new technologies. The creation of a national chip standard has helped ensure there is a more unified and effective recovery system in Canada.

The microchip is a small device about the size of a grain of rice. It is inserted into the pet in the area of the shoulder. It does not transmit unless it is read by a scanner, in which case, it passes to the reader a unique and identifying number.

If your pet is lost, the animal shelter can scan the pet and see the number. If the pet has been registered, you will then be contacted to claim your pet. However, it is essential that you keep your contact information up to date in the manufacturer’s database.

If you are traveling to an EU Country, and many other countries in the world, a microchip is mandatory as the immigration officers use it to compare the pet they are scanning to the veterinary documents you have presented.

INSIDE the United States the Home Again microchip by Destron or the Avid Micro Chip in either the nine digit encrypted verions or the Avid EURO 10 digit should be read by any shelter or veterinarian who has a universal scanner.

If you are traveling to an EU country and your pet has the nine digit microchip, either your pet will need more than one microchip or you will need to carry your own scanner.

In Europe, the standard pet microchip meets ISO standard 11784/17785 and is a 15 digit microchip operating at 134.2 kHz.

There are three commonly used types of microchips available from several different manufacturers and not all immigration offices in the various countries can read all three.

PETS WHO REMAIN IN THE USA:

If your pet will remain in the United States, then the Avid 9 digit encrypted chip or the Avid Euro Chip with 10 digits or the Home Again chips are acceptable, as nearly all animal shelters in the US have been equipped with scanners that will read these chips. The popularity of the 15 digit microchip is growning nationwide, as it is the world standard.

PETS TRAVELING TO AN EU COUNTRY:

If you are traveling to an EU Country then you want the 15 digit chip which meets ISO standards 11784/11785 134.2 kHz FECAVA.  Beechwood Animal Hospital uses ISO standard 15 digit chips.

PETS TRAVELING IN EUROPE AND LIVING IN EUROPE:

If you are living in Europe or traveling throughout Europe then you should use a microchip a 15 digit chip at 134.2 khz such as the Datamars (Crystal Tag) microchip.

PETS TRAVELING TO OTHER COUNTRIES: For travel to all countries you should use ISO 15 digit microchip that meets ISO standards 11784/11785.

REGISTERING YOUR CHIP: The Microchip only contains a number. If your pet is lost it will be impossible for the agency who finds your pet to contact you unless you have registered the pet and the microchip number. You can register the microchip number with the company who made it or an independent company such has www.help4pets.com.

In addition to the microchip, your pet should have a pet tag on its collar with the pet’s name, your phone number, the microchip number and THE NAME OF THE MANUFACTURER OF THE CHIP.

The identification number contained in the microchip must appear on all veterinary and vaccination certificates.

SCANNERS

If you are traveling to Europe the immigration people may be able to read the Home Again Chip or the Avid EuroChip (except France). However, if you are concerned then you can always carry your own scanner with you. Scanners are available for purchase or rental from Pet Travel Store. If your pet has the ISO 15 digit microchip then it is not necessary to carry your own scanner.

Click Here for information on the National Companion Animal Coalition Recognized Products

Patient Monitoring

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We monitor our patients closely to keep them as safe as possible during procedures that require general anesthesia. A veterinary technician will continually assess your pet’s heart and respiratory rate, blood pressure, and other vital signs to help prevent any anesthetic risk.

Please feel free to ask us about our patient monitoring protocol or any concerns you might have about your pet’s procedure. We’d be happy to discuss these matters in more detail.

General Anesthesia

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For some procedures, your pet will need to be administered general anesthesia so that he or she will be unconscious and not feel pain. Many pet owners worry about their pets being administered general anesthesia. We can assure you that modern anesthesia is generally quite safe; to further lower any risk, we perform a physical examination and run blood work ahead of time to catch any underlying health issues. In addition, we follow a specific anesthetic protocol, including monitoring vital signs during the procedure, to ensure the safety of our patients.

We begin all general anesthetic procedures by administering a sedative to help the pet relax and decrease any anxiety and pain. We then administer an intravenous drug to provide complete anesthesia and place a breathing tube into the patient’s trachea (windpipe). To maintain the state of unconsciousness, we deliver a gas anesthetic in combination with oxygen through the breathing tube.

Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns about your pet receiving general anesthesia or about the procedure for which your pet is scheduled.

Local Anesthesia

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If your pet is having a minor surgical or diagnostic procedure performed, we will use a local anesthetic to help control pain. For example, when we perform a biopsy (in which a small portion of tissue is surgically removed so it can be examined), we will use a local anesthetic. Local anesthetics cause a loss of sensation in the area where the procedure is being performed. We also often will use a sedative and/or anxiolytic (anti-anxiety medication) in combination with the local anesthetic to keep pets calm during a procedure.

Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns about your pet receiving local anesthesia or about the procedure for which your pet is scheduled.

radiology

Radiology (X-rays)

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When we need to figure out what’s wrong with your pet, we routinely use x-rays to help identify the cause of the problem, rule out possible problems, or provide a list of possible causes. We may also use x-rays during a wellness exam to diagnose potential problems before they become serious.

X-rays provide valuable information about a pet’s bones, gastrointestinal tract (stomach, intestines, colon), respiratory tract (lungs), heart, and genitourinary system (bladder, prostate). We use radiology alone or in conjunction with other diagnostic tools. Interpretation of radiographs requires great skill on the part of the veterinarian.

To avoid a blurry image, pets need to remain completely still while an x-ray is taken. In some cases, we may need to sedate your pet or use short-acting general anesthesia.

If you have any questions about our radiology service or what to expect during your pet’s procedure, please don’t hesitate to ask.