Common Proceedures

CBC – Complete Blood Count - A CBC measures a patient’s white blood cell count, red blood cell count, platelet count, and gauges for dehydration, anemia, or infections that may not be visually obvious.  This information is significant prior to any surgical procedure. For example, red blood cells carry O2 to the body’s tissues and an abnormal result could indicate a potential risk while your pet is anesthetized

Biochemical Profile – A profile provides values related to organ function (e.g., liver and kidney), as well as electrolyte levels and other important enzymes measured in the bloodstream to provide general information about organ health and function, especially of the liver, kidneys, and pancreas. The chemistry profile also shows the patient’s blood sugar level and the quantities of important electrolytes in the blood.

CBCs and profiles are often performed very early during a diagnostic process. Even if results are all “normal,” this information can rule out a variety of medical conditions. This bloodwork can also provide a ‘baseline’ to compare with should any future tests be necessary by detecting any changes.

CBCs and profiles are strongly encouraged to be performed before a pet undergoes general anesthesia for a surgical procedure and required for patients over 7 years old. The information gained from these measurements can inform the veterinarian of any potential hazards that may be exacerbated by surgical procedures.  If test results are abnormal, we may recommend additional precautions to help ensure your pet’s safety during the procedure or may postpone the procedure entirely.  This bloodwork poses no risk to your pet and the information gained is invaluable and potentially life-saving.

FIV/FeLV test  Cats infected with FeLV and/or FIV that spend time outside are at increased risk for exposure to other infections and viruses that their bodies may be unable to handle. They are also at risk to receive wounds (cat fights or other trauma) that may fail to heal properly due to the compromised immune function associated with FeLV or FIV. Furthermore, these cats also pose a risk to cats they encounter, thus further spreading the disease.  Cats infected with FIV and/or Felv can live a mostly normal life, but testing  for the presence of FelV and FIV will allow the owner and veterinarian to take appropriate measures. Most veterinarians will recommend keeping FeLV- or FIV-positive cats indoors, which not only helps protect cats from injuries and other infections but also reduces the likelihood that these cats will transmit FeLV or FIV to other cats.

Fecal – A analysis of an animal’s fecal material can determine if some parasites, such as roundwormshookwormswhipwormscoccidia and giardia are present. Since intestinal parasites live in your pet’s gastrointestinal tract, they are usually hidden from view. Unlike external parasites, such as fleas and ticks, most intestinal parasites are never seen. The only way to detect the presence of intestinal parasites and identify them is by doing a fecal analysis.

Heartworm/ 4DX - Heartworm disease is a serious and potentially fatal condition that affects dogs and sometimes cats caused by parasitic worms transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito. (See our Parasite page). Annual testing is necessary, even when dogs are on heartworm prevention year-round, to ensure that the prevention program is working. Heartworm medications are highly effective, but dogs could still become infected. If you miss just one dose of a monthly medication—or even just give it late—it can leave your dog unprotected. Even if you give the medication as recommended, your dog may spit out or vomit a heartworm pill—or rub off a topical medication. Heartworm preventives are highly effective, but not 100 percent. If you don’t get your dog tested, you won’t know if your dog needs treatment.

Diet/General Health

People who eat rhubarb leaves will become very sick, as it contains compounds that are toxic to humans, yet it is perfectly safe for deer to eat.  The same principle follows when we allow our pets to eat human food; we are different animals, and we have different nutritional needs and sensitivities. In 2017, the ASPCA's Animal Poison Control Center received more than 199,000 calls; most cases of animal poisoning were caused by common human foods and household items. Some of these foods are: onions, milk, grapes, bones, nuts, avocados, garlic, caffeine, alcohol, anything with Xylitol (a very common sweetener in thousands of products), yeast dough, apple cores…. The list goes on and on and on. Proper diet can make the difference between a long and healthy life and one filled with doctor visits, medications, and frustrations. (For a more complete list of toxic foods click here ____linked site____) 

 

Spay/Neuter

We provide spaying and neutering services for cats, dogs, potbelly pigs, rabbits, and other pocket pets.

  • Spay: Spaying refers to the sterilization of females. This is done by removing the ovaries, a ovariectomy, or by removing the ovaries and uterus, an ovariohysterectomy. The most obvious advantage to spaying is that there is no possibility of having unexpected or unwanted puppies or kittens. The number of animals euthanized each year in the United States at rescues, shelters, and animal control facilities is staggering. Spaying can also help reduce unwanted behaviors and eliminate the risk of pyrometra, a potentially life-threatening infection of the uterus.

Our recommendations for spaying:

Cats: We recommend spaying cats anytime after 6 months of ag. Generally this is prior to her first heat cycle, but not always.

Dogs: The age recommendation for spaying dogs can vary by breed. We recommend discussing this with our doctors on a patient by patient basis.

Pot Belly Pigs: We recommend spaying female pot bell pigs at an early age to reduce undesirable trats, usually between 4 and 6 months of age.

Rabbits: Rabbits can be sexually mature at 4 months of age but we recommend waiting until 6 months of age due to the surgical risks in younger patients

Neuter: Neutering generally refers to the sterilization of males. Unaltered male pets often develop behavioral issues that can be difficult to tolerate and impossible to manage. They are more likely to roam and to fight with other animals, resulting in injuries that can be serious in nature. Intact males also tend to mark their territory; their territory is often the inside of the house they live in.  Neutered males are also less likely to develop prostate problems, including prostate cancer.

Our recommendations for neutering:

Cats: We recommend neutering male cats at 6 months or older. However, they can be sexually mature as early as 4 ½ months.

Dogs: As with spaying, the age recommendation for neutering dogs varies, depending on the breed. We recommend discussing this with our doctors on a patient by patient basis.

Pot belly pigs:  Male pot belly pigs are usually neutered at a young age to prevent undesirable traits, such as odor, aggressiveness, _________of other pets and people, and urine marking. We recommend that this is done at 4 to 6 months.

Rabbits: Rabbits can become sexually mature when their testicles descend at approximately 3 ½ months. While they can be neutered at this age our doctors recommend waiting until 6 months of age, when the anesthetic risks are less.