Why should I spay my Female dog/cat?
A female dog’s heat period results in about 2-3 weeks of bleeding. For dogs kept indoors, this can be very messy and she will attract male dogs. This heat period occurs about once every 6 months. Spaying your female dog early can limit health risks associated with intact females like Pyometra (infection of the Uterus) and Breast Cancer (more common among intact females).
A female Cat’s heat period results in 2-3 weeks of vocalizing, restlessness, and wandering behaviour. For indoor cats and their owners, this can become very tiresome. The “heat period” occurs about every 2-3 weeks until spaying or breeding. Population control is still an important factor for urban and suburban cats. Unwanted kittens and adult cats become a community problem. This is preventable by spaying your cat.
Why Should I neuter my Male dog/cat?
Intact males are very attracted to females in heat. Uncontrolled breeding leads to overpopulation which becomes an animal and community problem. Male dogs are generally more aggressive and more likely to fight with other males, increasing the likelihood of injuries. Wandering behavior is more common in male cats and dogs. This leads to being hit by a car, poisonings, and becoming a nuisance to neighbors. Neutering has health benefits like prevention of prostate problems,urogenital tumours, and venereal diseases.
When should I spay/neuter my pet?
We recommend that females be spayed before their first heat at 6 months of age. Males should also be neutered by 6 months old, but can be done after that also.
What should I feed my Kitten/Puppy?
Optimal health requires that certain nutrients be present in precise balances and amounts tailored to the activity level and needs of each life stage. The quality of ingredients is so important and cannot be easily understood by reading lables.
We recommend feeding your new pet a premium pet food such as Royal Canin/Medi-Cal or Hills Prescription Diets which choose the highest quality ingredients in formulas that taste good to your pet. The food should be specially formulated for kitten/puppies. Food formulated for kittens should be fed until your kitten is about 12 months of age. Puppies should eat puppy formulated food until 12-18 months of age.
Can I feed table-scraps?
Table foods are not recommended. Because they are generally very tasty, dogs will often begin to hold out for these and may not eat their dog food. Often table scraps can upset stomachs. Do not feel guilty if your dog is happy to eat one food day after day, week after week.
Do you recommend Wet or Dry Foods?
Feeding dry or canned is acceptable. Each has its advantages and disadvantages. Dry food can be left out for longer periods of time. Canned foods tend to be more appealing to most pets, can be more expensive, messier and can induce a finicky appetite. Dental diets that help prevent tartar accumulation are generally dry formulation.
Do you recommend declawing?
The short answer is "no". If you are considering decalwing your cat, you should book a consultation with your veterinarian. Declawing is a painful surgical procedure performed to prevent injury to other cats, people and furniture damage. It is usaually the last resort. The surgery involves a general anaesthetic and the removal of the end of each toe at the first joint. There are several potential complications that may occur afterwards. Ask your veterinarian to discuss them in detail prior to surgery. Ask your Veterinarian about alternative options.
Do you recommend getting Pet Insurance for my pet?
No one plans on their pet getting sick or having an accident. With insurance you don’t have to worry about being faced with unexpected veterinary bills. With pet health insurance you can ensure that your pet will receive the required medical attention needed. A pet health insurance policy will assist you during unexpected situations by sharing in the cost of veterinary treatment for your pet. Premiums and coverage varies depending on the breed of dog/cat, its age, and the insurance company. Check out their websites. The best time to insure your pet is before they develop any health problems. Ask your veterinarian about Pet Health Insurance.
What is Heartworm Disease? How can I be sure my dog doesn’t contract Heartworm Disease?
Heartworm disease is caused by a parasite or worm that lives in the right side of the heart and the adjacent blood vessels. It is transmitted from dog to dog by mosquitoes from Spring until Fall. The cycle begins when a mosquito bites a heartworm-infected dog and ingests microfilariae (immature heartworms) which circulate in the blood stream. The microfilariae develop to an infective stage in the mosquito and then are transmitted to another dog through the mosquitoes bite. Once inside the dog’s heart, the worms can grow up to 35cm long and can cause significant damage to the heart and lungs. If left untreated, heartworm disease can lead to death from heart failure. Heartworm is not prevalent on Vancouver Island or the lower mainland. We recommend having your dog tested for heartworm if you have been with it to heartworm areas. It is important to put yur dog on a prevention medication if you plan on travellng to heartworm areas in warm months. Ask us about heartworm if you are travelling with your dog outside of Vancouver Island or the lower mainland.
What is Euthanasia? And how do I know it’s time?
Euthanasia is the procedure to end a pet's life by lethal injection under veterinary supervision. The decision is made with your veterinarian. It can be one of the most difficult decisions a pet owner ever has to make but we are here to help you. We offer various aftercare options including cremation. You may chose to stay for the injection.
Why have oral examinations annually?
Gingivitis and periodontal disease are 2 of the most common conditions seen by veterinarians today. The problem begins when plaque and tartar are allowed to build up on your pet’s teeth. Plaque harbours bacteria which can infect gum tissue and roots of teeth resulting in painful inflammed gums and tooth loss. Recent studies have documented that certain heart, liver and kidney diseases may be associated with these bacteria. It may be necessary for your pet to have a professional dental cleaning done by a veterinarian . Like people, animals need this professional attention on a routine basis. This cleaning will require your pet to be put under anaesthesia.
Tooth brushing is considered the most effective method of removing plaque. It is important to use a toothbrush and toothpaste designed for pets. Pet toothpastes have flavours that appeal to pets and need not be rinsed. There are now excellent dental diets clinically proven to help.