- Current Vaccine Guidelines
Vaccinations are a critical part of your pet’s preventative care and they help protect against some severe and fatal diseases. However, many advances in vaccine technology and scientific research has resulted in vaccines lasting longer. Veterinarians can now customize your pet’s vaccines based more on lifestyle, age, breed, and travel habits. No longer is the current standard of care to vaccinate all dogs and cats every year for all diseases. We are now advocating pet owners have a discussion with their veterinarian about which vaccines and how often they should be given for each pet in the family. For more information on the current canine and feline vaccine guidelines, go to www.aahanet.org.
- Nutrition Myths
Is “organic, holistic, grain free, and natural” pet food really best for pets? Does it just make us feel good? Nutrition is a key area of health for humans and pets. But are the marketing terms used to get us to buy food really benefiting the pet? Overall, pet nutrition has come a long way in the past 20 years. We understand pet nutrition better and can improve their length of time with limiting calories and feeding high quality ingredients. Basically, pets need a consistent and balanced diet. Feed your pet a diet that fits your budget and your philosophy but use your vet, not marketing, to help guide you on proper pet nutrition.
- Heartworm Disease…Quiet Killer.
Tennessee consistently ranks in the top 10 states for cases of heartworm disease diagnosed each year. Dogs with heartworms may not show symptoms until later in the disease. At that time, they may show lethargy or inability to exercise/take walks, coughing, swelling belly, or sudden death. Mosquitos are the carrier of heartworm larvae that are injected into pets when they bite. When you walk through the yard or hang out on the patio, do you know which mosquito might be carrying the potentially fatal disease? All dogs need to be on monthly heartworm prevention year around. We also know that cats get exposed just as often as dogs, they just don’t have clinical disease like dogs. The most common clinical signs of cats with heartworms are vomiting, lethargy, trouble breathing/asthma like symptoms, and sudden death. Testing cats for heartworms is difficult due to the low worm burden they carry. Veterinarians want cats to be on heartworm prevention just like the dogs in the family.
- Seniors…Age is not a disease but diseases come with age.
Veterinarians know that as your pet ages, some common diseases start to get more prevalent. Common diseases in dogs and cats are kidney and heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, obesity, and dental disease to name just a few. Remember, for every year that passes, 5-7 years pass in your pet. Veterinarians can help find and manage these diseases earlier with more frequent exams and blood and urine testing, ideally every 6 months. If you want optimal senior pet health, see your veterinarian more frequently.
It’s a lot cheaper with a preventative care plan.
Veterinarians are the experts in keeping pets healthy. We have the expertise to prevent disease and detect illness early. Often veterinarians make recommendations to pet owners that include semi annual exams, vaccines, heartworm testing, fecal exams, annual bloodwork, and flea/tick/heartworm prevention. All these recommendations cost more and more each year. However, we recommend these because we know these services and products keep our patients healthy. As a result preventative care plans have been developed to help our pet owners afford the best care for their pets. Some veterinarians have developed plans that take all the annual services we recommend then discount those services and split them into easy monthly payments. As a pet owner you can feel confident you can provide the best care and afford it as well.
Blue Oasis Pet Hospital has customized our own preventative care plans called BluePaw Plans. Please call us to discuss how we can make optimized pet care more affordable or answer any questions about your let’s health. We are here for Loving Care. Support. Knowledge.