April showers bring May flowers – and with those flowers comes one thing, pollen. Humans are not the only ones affected by pollen and the seasonal allergies it can cause. Animals, including our beloved dogs and cats, suffer from hay fever and allergies just like we do. And, unfortunately, their suffering is just as miserable as ours. (more…)
Naperville Animal Hospital Blog
Archive for the ‘Pet Health’ Category
Some intestinal parasites are easier to get rid of than others, and perhaps none is quite as formidable as the dreaded whipworm. A relatively common parasite of the dog (as well as coyotes and foxes), the whipworm, or Trichuris vulpis, can be hard to get rid of. (more…)
Have you ever had a diagnostic screening test? You know, when your doctor insists on checking your cholesterol levels, taking your blood pressure, or testing for glaucoma–even though you feel perfectly healthy?
Screening tests are a common strategy used to identify those who have a certain condition or disease even though they are not necessarily exhibiting symptoms.
These diagnostic screening tests are a powerful tool in both human and veterinary medicine, as many diseases respond better to treatment when they are caught early in their course. Many of the tests also provide valuable wellness information that allows your vet to make recommendations for diet or lifestyle to maintain wellness. (more…)
Spring has sprung, and with it a whole new slew of pet hazards need to be on your radar. One common danger for pups is the dreaded canine parvovirus. While “parvo” can strike any time of the year, it is most common in the spring and summer months.
So what is this disease all about? (more…)
Heartworms are a parasite that every pet owner should be familiar with. How much do you really know about this serious and formidable foe? See if you can answer the following questions.
Q: True or false? Heartworms only affect dogs.
A: False. While heartworm disease is mostly a dog problem, cats, ferrets, wolves, coyotes, foxes, and sea lions can all be infected. (more…)
You probably know that your vet recommends vaccinating your pet for rabies. While there are not a huge amount of rabies cases in pets in the United States, skipping out on the rabies shot is not a matter to be taken lightly. Here are a few compelling reasons to keep your dog, cat, or ferret current on its vaccines: (more…)
… is worth a pound of cure! At Naperville Animal Hospital, we truly believe this old adage. Preventive veterinary care is defined as care that prevents or slows illness or disease. Who wouldn’t want that? That is why we offer convenient, affordable preventive care packages for your pets!
Every preventive plan includes unlimited free office visits and physical exams by a licensed veterinarian. A good physical exam is our most powerful tool for detecting and treating problems. Each plan also includes early screening options and high quality vaccines to further prevent and find disease. (more…)
Ah, the urban legend. A story that you heard from a friend of a friend of a friend that is just plausible enough to be believed. We have all heard them, and we have all fallen for one or two at some point. No one knows exactly where the myth of the “hypoallergenic” dog got started, but it is a highly perpetuated tale. (more…)
The pet obesity epidemic is a big concern in this country, and the problem is growing worse. Weight loss is not easy for anyone, human or otherwise. When it comes down to it, the solution seems simple: Eat less, exercise more. This is easier said than done, however, particularly in the cat. But there are important reasons for us to strive to reach a healthy weight for our feline companions.
Overweight cats are prone to illness and shortened lives
Overweight cats are prone to some serious medical conditions including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, respiratory disease, osteoarthritis, high blood pressure, and certain forms of cancer. Overweight cats live shorter lives than normal weight cats. Also, these cats tend to be “lazier”, not moving around as much, which makes it harder to detect early signs of serious illnesses. Fat cats are no laughing matter.
What can you do to help your cat slim down?
So how do we accomplish safe, successful weight loss for our furry felines?
- Cut the calories. This sounds simple enough, but there is more to it than just not eating as much. Fat cats are prone to developing a serious liver disease called hepatic lipidosis if they do not eat enough. Kitty diets should only be started under the guidance of your veterinarian. He or she can help you to calculate your cat’s daily calorie requirements. Don’t be tempted to use a self-feeder. Instead, measure out portions daily. Pet or play with your kitty when it begs–some cats are literally starving for attention! Feed small meals frequently and freshen the water bowl often. These little changes can make a big one!
- Change the food. For some cats, simply changing the diet can make a drastic difference. For instance, most canned foods have a lower caloric content than their dry counterparts. Light or diet foods are also available. Be sure that you are not cutting calories too drastically by calculating caloric needs with your veterinarian. Cats can be finicky about new foods, so be sure to gradually introduce the new diet over a 1-2 week period. You can try to make new foods more palatable by warming them slightly or adding a little oregano or a splash of salmon juice or omega-3 fatty acid supplement.
- Get that kitty moving! No bones about it–it is harder to increase your cat’s activity level than your dog’s. It takes some creativity to get your cat burning calories. Make your cat “hunt” for its food by moving the bowl frequently. Try putting it at the furthest place from kitty’s sleeping spot to encourage movement. Use interactive toys such as flashlights, laser pointers, paper bags–anything your cat likes to chase to have a short activity session daily. You may need to change it up frequently.
- Keep track of progress. Rechecks and weigh-ins can help tell you if you are on the right track. Monthly weigh-ins are ideal. If you are not making progress in a month’s time, it is time to try another food or technique.
You may be asking yourself, “Why shouldn’t I order my pet’s prescription online? Good prices, direct shipping, what’s to lose?” Be aware that it may not be as good as it sounds. Take the following into account before choosing where to purchase your next veterinary prescription:
- When your veterinarian prescribes a medication, he or she can dispense it in a safe manner, ensuring your pet has had any recommended screening performed, looking out for drug interactions, and keeping the product in an appropriate manner. This does not always happen with online pharmacies.
- The FDA says, “buyer beware” about online pharmacies. There has been much concern about the quality and authenticity of drugs that can be obtained online.
- If you have a problem or question, your veterinarian is able to address it directly. Not all veterinary pharmacies can claim the same.
- Websites that sell prescription veterinary products without the need for a prescription are breaking the law, plain and simple. If they are ignoring the law in this respect, where else are they cutting corners?
- Many drug company warranties such as those for heartworm prevention are invalidated when the product is purchased through such venues.
Talk to us or to your veterinarian. He or she truly has your pet’s best interest at heart. And you may be able to walk out the door with your pet’s medication for little more than ordering online.
Our on-site pharmacy is well stocked and able to fill prescriptions before you leave. We are also a compounding pharmacy which means that we can tailor your pet’s medication to their unique needs. This gives us the ability to adjust the dose and method of delivery or to offer solutions for pets that are difficult to medicate, such as adding flavors or ordering transdermal medications.
Talk to us or to your veterinarian about the options they offer. Sometimes convenience is not worth the risk, and your pet’s medications fall into that category.