Dr. Bob's Animal Health and Information Site
Dr. Bobs Pet Health and Information Site
Dr. Bob's All Creatures Site 509 Benicia Road, Vallejo, California, USA 707-642-4405
Fall 1997 Newsletter
DON'T FORGET YOUR OLDER PETS NEED PREVENTIVE CARE TOO!
Our practice sends out reminders when it has been one year since your pets last vaccination of physical examination. Owners often fail to realize the physical examination is as important, of more important than the vaccinations. Since species other than dogs and cats are not given yearly vaccinations, some owners disregard these notices without fully realizing the role the yearly examination plays in avoiding both serious illness in their pet and unnecessary expense. For the smaller pets such as rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, mice, rats, and similar species; their lifespan is very short and aging is quite rapid. They usually are not exposed to members of their own species that are outside and consequently don't have the problem with contagious disease. However, they may experience any of the other aging maladies of our dog and cat pets. These include kidney disease, intestinal disease, cardio-respiratory disease and others. A thorough examination can detect these problems early and allow us to work with you to maximize both their quality and quantity of life. birds and reptiles live much longer, however they usually do not outwardly exhibit symptoms of disease until condition is quite advanced and they are extremely ill. We routinely recommend blood work to evaluate their internal organs and blood cells in order to identify problems before the pet becomes seriously ill. Whether your pet is a dog or cat or one of the other less traditional pets, when you get your reminder please help us prevent serious illness by bringing your pet in for their yearly examination.
|Your aging pet should undergo an
annual geriatric screening and now is the ideal time to have this
performed before winter begins. This screening is a valuable tool
that allows for the early diagnosis of ailments and is key to your pet
living a long life
AGE TO BEGIN SCREENINGS
A general rule for cats is to begin screenings at approximately 10 years of age. Dogs are a little more difficult since the factors that influence the aging process (listed below) are also different. To assist you, we've provided the following chart that is based on weight. Please remember that pets (like people) don't always fall into neat categories. Your pet may have specific needs based on its medical history that must be taken into account.
Weight Age to begin screening
Up to 15 lbs. 9 to 11 years
15 to 50 lbs. 7 to 9 years
50 to 80 lbs. 6 to 8 years
"Giants" 4 to 6 years
FACTORS THAT INFLUENCE THE AGING PROCESS:
A geriatric screening is an important diagnostic tool. Not only does it give the doctor an opportunity to discover immediate problems but it gives us a "baseline" upon which we can evaluate future tests. This is especially critical in times of an emergency. As part of the screening, we will do the following:
Together, we can ensure that your pet grows old gracefully by remaining an active and vital member of your household. This can only be accomplished if your pet is healthy! Call the office today to set up an appointment for your beloved "senior citizen" before winter begins.
" Heaven goes by favor. If it went by merit, you would stay out and your dog would go in!"
"Generally, or at least very often, people with a deep interest in animals are the best people around!"
Roger Caras, A Dog is Listening
" I could've sworn I heard the can opener."
"Top Ten Dog Thoughts," Number 10, Late Night with David Letterman
"Dogs remember faces; cats, places."
Contact our office immediately if your pet exhibits any of these symptoms. Some of these may signal a serious of life-threatening condition:
|ALL ABOUT CATS
IF YOUR CAT COMES INTO CONTACT WITH OTHER CATS, THEN READ THIS!
|If your cat comes into contact
with other cats, your pet may be at risk from several life threatening
viruses. Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP) is one of them. Here
are some facts you should know about FIP.
|OVERWEIGHT PETS PRESENT A SERIOUS HEALTH RISK|
escape the summertime heat, many of our pets lounge for hours in the shade
or the air-conditioning. During this time, most pet owners continue
to feed their pet the same amount, never adjusting for the pet's
inactivity. As a result, in the fall we often see pets whose ribs
are a little hard to feel and walk a little slower because of weight
gain. Indeed, up to 45% of all pets seen by veterinarians are
In our article "Caring for your canine of feline senior citizen", we mentioned that being overweight has a significant influence on the health of an older pet. Some of the problems associated with overweight pets are:
|If your pet is older and requires a geriatric screening, we'll discuss your pet's weight with you and offer some constructive recommendations if needed. If your pet is not a senior and you feel as if he or she is overweight, give us a call. Together we can make your pet healthier, happier, and slimmer!|
YOUR PET HAVE PROPER I.D.?
Even the most homebound pet occasionally wonders off and cannot be easily found. Trying to locate a pet who lacks adequate identification can be rather scary. There are a couple of things that every pet owner should do:
Many groups are suggesting that pets be equipped with both forms of identification to ensure their return. If you have any questions about pet I.D. tags or would like to schedule an appointment to have a microchip identification placed in your pet, please call our office. When it happens, the prompt return of your pet will be worth it!
|TAKE A LOOK AT
YOUR PET'S COAT
A PET'S SKIN AND HAIR OFTEN ARE INDICATORS OF GENERAL GOOD HEALTH
Take a look at your pet - is he or she scratching, rubbing, or licking excessively? Does its coat lack luster? Do you smell any skin or body odor? If "yes" to any of these questions, you should give us a call. These symptoms may indicate the presence of allergies, bacterial or fungal infections, parasites, or a hormonal problem.
Allergies - Humans with allergies sneeze - pets scratch. The allergy must be identified and treated.
Bacterial Infection - Bacterial infections are very common skin problems. However, they are usually secondary to other problems like allergies, parasites, etc. The bacterial infection should be treated while you search for the underlying cause.
Fungal Infection - Fungal Infection or ringworm is often mistaken for other skin problems. Topical anti-fungal agents are usually recommended.
External Parasites - Fleas, ticks, mange and lice can all be problems to your pet and their effects can be compounded if your pet is allergic to their bites. The treatment will depend on the type of parasite your pet has.
Hormonal - Hormonal imbalances are often caused by malfunctions of the thyroid, adrenal, pituitary or other glands. A blood test is usually required for correct identification.
Since many of these symptoms are so similar we strongly urge you not to attempt a self-diagnosis. We have the training, experience, and equipment needed to make a prompt and accurate diagnosis. Please give us a call if you have any questions.