We are sad to report that Buttons finally succumbed to the heart and kidney failure that has been affecting him since last September. He will be greatly missed
Here is our “Buttons Snowman” that will be displayed in Myersville this holiday season. Be sure to check it out as you drive through town!
Here is our office schedule for the upcoming holidays:
Wednesday, Nov 26th: 8AM-5PM (Regular Hours)
Thursday, Nov 27th: THANKSGIVING DAY — CLOSED
Friday, Nov 28th: 8AM05PM (Regular Hours)
Wednesday, Dec 24th: 8AM-12Noon — Christmas Eve
Thursday, Dec 25th: CHRISTMAS DAY— CLOSED
Friday, Dec 26th: 8AM-5PM (Regular Hours)
Wednesday, Dec 31st: 8AM-5PM —New Years Eve (Regular Hours)
Thursday, Jan 1st: NEW YEARS DAY— CLOSED
Friday, Jan 2nd: 8AM-5PM (Regular Hours)
As a reminder to all of our clients, we usually see a “Flea Surge” each Fall as these pests seem to make an effort to find a cozy spot for the winter. Usually this happens in October, and seems to coincide with heat kicking on in our clients homes. This year, the surge appears to a bit later as this week we are definitely seeing an increase in the number of fleas on our patients. Be sure to check you pet for fleas, and if you find them, now is a good time to treat your pet and home for these pests. Remember we recommend year-round flea and tick treatment for our patients!
Just a quick reminder to all of our clients that we will be closed on Friday, July 4th in observance of the Independence Day holiday, and will reopen on Saturday, July 5th at 8AM for regular business hours. If you have an emergency on July 4th that cannot wait, please contact either: 1) Crossroads Animal Referral and Emergency in Frederick–301-662-6622; or 2) Mountain View Animal Emergency in Hagerstown– 301-733-7339. All of this information is also available in our telephone system in case you call us after hours.
We are very happy to report that we now have Purevax Rabies back in stock, so now we can get your cat up-to-date on it’s Rabies Vaccination with our preferred vaccine. We will be sending out postcards to all of the Kitties that were due for thier Rabies Vaccination in May and decided to wait until we had the vaccine available again.
If there are any questions, please call our office.
With all of the recent media attention in regards to the legal, moral, and ethical ramifications of Medical Marijuana, there is one group at risk that many would not think of—-our pets. Medical Marijuana is now legal in 21 states, and marijuana is available in multiple forms, including tablets, oils, cookies, brownies, and other forms. The problem is (especially) dogs get into things, and when they have access to that plate of special cookies or brownies, they don’t eat a weight appropriate amount—they eat as much as they can. Marijuana is considered toxic to pets and causes reactions ranging from depression, staggering, dilated pupils, vomiting, seizures, and in rare cases coma and death.
Animal emergency clinics in states with legalized medical marijuana are seeing cases of toxicity in dogs on nearly a daily basis. We saw our first case at Palmer Animal Hospital this week! Symptoms appears within 30-60 minutes of ingestions and can last upto 3 days. Emergency clinic doctors report that pets commonly present with lethargy, eyes rolled back in their heads, and many are unconscious. Treatment includes induction of vomiting, the use of orally administered activated charcoal to absorb toxins, and supportive care with IV fluids and hospitalization. One of the difficulties in diagnosing marijuana toxicity is that owners are often reluctant to admit what their pet got into! Remember, we are here for your pet—not to tattle on you!
So how do you prevent this problem? It comes down to common sense as with other medications and potentially toxic foods—keep all medications (and medical foods) out of reach of your pet (and children).
‘PUREVAX RABIES VACCINE SHORTAGE’
Currently there is a nationwide backorder and shortage of the PureVax Rabies Vaccine that we use in our cat patients. This backorder is expected to last at least through the end of May. Our current stock of PureVax Rabies is already depleted, and we are not expected to receive anymore product until at least early June.
There are other rabies vaccines still available on the market, and we always stock a vaccine called Imrab-3 for our dog patients. So why is this Pure Vax Rabies shortage an issue? There is great concern in cats about the risk of tumor formation at sites of inflammation, including some vaccinations. The tumors that form are usually malignant fibrosarcomas that are very difficult, if not impossible, to completely and permanently remove. PureVax Rabies is currently the only rabies vaccine on the market that is not linked to an increased occurrence of these tumors because it is the only non-adjuvanted rabies vaccine available. Note that the risk of a tumor from an adjuvanted vaccine is low, and is currently estimated at 1-2 tumors per 10,000 cats vaccinated. However, if it occurs in your pet it can be devastating. For this reason, we have used PureVax Rabies almost exclusively in cats since July 2007 and feel that this is the safest rabies vaccine available.
So what are the options for your cat in regards to rabies vaccination? There are basically two options, and which one to choose depends on your cat’s lifestyle.
- Your cat can be vaccinated with Imrab-3. This is a highly effective vaccine, but unfortunately is an adjuvanted product, and therefore does carry the (low) risk of vaccine-related tumors. Note that Imrab-3 is the vaccine we currently use in dogs quite safely, and we used it in our cat patients until July 2007. Also note that Imrab-3 boosters are valid for 3 years versus 1 year for PureVax.
- You could consider delaying your cat’s rabies vaccination until PureVax is available again, which we expect to be early June. We would recommend looking at your cats’ lifestyle in making this decision. If your car is outside significantly and potentially exposed to other animals/cats, we would not recommend delaying. If your cat is entirely indoors and not exposed to other animals, then it is not as great a risk to delay the vaccine. If you do decide to delay your cast’s rabies vaccination, then the other decision to make is whether to also delay their Annual Well Pet Exam. Please also keep in mind that rabies vaccinations are required for all cats by Maryland State Law.
If you have any question regarding your cat’s rabies status, and whether/how to vaccinate, please feel free to call our office and discuss the situation with our staff or one of our doctors.
Chocolate and plants are not the only subtances that are toxic to your pets. Xylitol, which is found in “sugar free” products such as gum, toothpastes, mouthwash, certain cough medicines, baked goods, and candies, is toxic to dogs. Xylitol is a sugar alcohol used as an artificial sweetener which is naturally made from birch, raspberries, corn and plums. Although the products that we consume with xylitol are safe for us, they are extremely dangerous for your dog. The effects of xylitol can be severe and signs may appear in fewer than 30 minutes. The consumption of any amount of the product causes rapid release of insulin in dogs which causes a sudden profound hypoglycemia (dangerous drop in blood sugar). Signs of hypoglycemia include vomiting, weakness, lethargy, collapse and sometimes seizures.
Cases of xylitol poisoning have substantially increased due to the rise of xylitol in human foods. Keep in mind that our food is not meant for our pets. If you often purchase food or gum labeled “sugar free,” be sure to keep it out of reach where your pet can’t access it. If you suspect that your dog has ingested a product that might contain xylitol, call your veterinarian immediately.
‘NEXGARD- Product Update’
We have been using NexGard for about 2 months now with very few problems. We are very happy to report an update on the product: NEXGARD IS NOW LABELLED TO KILL DEER TICKS AND THE LONE STAR TICK!! This is very exciting news as the Deer Tick carries Lyme Disease and the Lone Star Tick is one of the most difficult to control! We think NexGard should offer excellent protection against fleas and ticks with an oral once-a-month tablet.
See below for our previous post on NexGard:
NexGard is a new oral once-a-month flea and tick treatment, for dogs from Merial, the maker of Heartgard and Frontline. As most know, fleas and ticks remain a common problem for our pets in our area. Fleas can cause serious discomfort, flea allergy dermatitis, tapeworms, and other diseases. Ticks can carry many diseases, including Lyme Disease and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. NexGard is a very safe product, and also appears to be very effective as well.
NexGard is for dogs only and is available as a soft, beef-flavored chew that they love! NexGard is available by prescription only from your veterinarian, and has many advantages:
- Kills existing fleas
- Approved by the FDA
- Beef-flavored chew that dogs enjoy, therefore easy to give
- Kills adult fleas before they can lay eggs
- It kills American dog ticks that can spead diseases
- It stays strong the entire month
NexGard will kill fleas on dogs before they can lay eggs all month long. To prevent infestation all you have to do is give NexGard to your dog monthly, and make sure all the pets in your house, even indoor cats, are treated with a flea and tick control product. Be sure to ask our staff about this great new product, and about getting a sample dose for your dog.