Frequently Asked Questions
What vaccinations should my dog get?
The vaccinations we routinely use for dogs are: distemper, hepatitis, leptospirosis, parvovirus, parainfluenza, bordatella, rabies, lyme, corona and canine influenza. Not all dogs will require each of these vaccines, and we will suggest specific protocols for your dog depending on their breed, environment, etc. For some vaccinations, you can elect to have a blood test done that will measure your pet’s antibody response (titers) to previous vaccines and thus may increase the interval of time between vaccines given.
What vaccinations should my cat get?
The vaccinations we routinely use for cats are: distemper, calicivirus, rhinotracheitis, rabies and leukemia. Not all cats may require every vaccine, as this can depend on the number of cats in your household and whether your cat goes outside.
When does a puppy or kitten start its vaccinations?
We recommend starting vaccinations at 6 – 8 weeks of age. We give them in a series 3 – 4 weeks apart so that your pet will have good immunity. We give Rabies vaccinations at the time of your pet’s final booster. Depending on the vaccine it may be boostered yearly or every 3 years.
When do I need to begin heartworm preventative in my puppy?
Heartworm has a 6-month cycle and you begin preventative treatment for your pet before 6 months of age. No preventative treatment should ever begin before a blood test is done because it is best to know if your pet already has heartworms so they can be treated.
Do I need to wait until after my pet’s first heat to have her spayed?
No, you do not need to wait for your pet to have her first heat to be spayed. In fact, spaying before the first heat dramatically reduces the risk of mammary cancer later in life.
Why should I neuter my male pet?
Aside from eliminating the risk of future testicular cancer, neutering your male pet may provide several advantages such as: decreased roaming behavior, decreased “spraying” (cats), decreased aggression and decreased incidence of prostate enlargement, infection and inflammation.
When and how often should I expect my female pet to go into heat?
Small breed dogs usually have their first heat around 6 months and larger breed dogs around 8 – 9 months. Cats usually have their first heat between 5 and 8 months. A female goes into heat about twice a year on average. Some may occasionally skip a cycle, but will seldom have an extra one. The heat cycle lasts about three weeks in dogs. A cat may remain in heat until bred.
For how long is a dog or cat pregnant?
The average gestation period in dogs and cats is 63 days, just over two months.
How can I tell if my pet is ready to give birth?
Symptoms of an impending birth may include decreased appetite, restlessness and an increase in nesting behavior. In addition, body temperature may drop to about 99° F.
What is a normal time to wait between each delivery?
Normal birthing interval for puppies/kittens is up to two hours. If the break between delivery approaches four hours, or the mother appears to be actively straining for more than ½ hour, you should call your veterinarian.
Who should I call if my pet has a medical emergency?
Our doctors are on call 24 hours a day. If you call our number after hours, it will be forwarded to our answering service. The answering service will then forward your message and phone number to the doctor on call and your call will be returned as soon as possible.
My pet has diarrhea. What can I do?
Diarrhea can occur with mild GI upset or illness or may be a sign of a more serious disease. If your pet is bright and alert and is acting otherwise normally, you can try withholding all food and water for 12 hours. After that period, you can try introducing small amounts of food at a time. If your pet seems lethargic or the diarrhea continues for a prolonged period, you should contact your veterinarian.
My pet is vomiting. What can I do?
As with diarrhea, vomiting can occur with mild GI upset or illness or may be a sign of a more serious disease. If your pet is bright and alert and is acting otherwise normally, you can try withholding all food and water for 12 hours. After that period, you can try introducing small amounts of food at a time. If your pet seems lethargic or the vomiting continues for a prolonged period, you should contact your veterinarian.