Sunday, November 13, 2005

Hatton Veterinary Hospital

We hope our clients use this forum to ask questions and interact with the staff. We will also use it to post new information that our clients might be interested in (pet health topics, our holiday business hours, special offers, etc.). If you haven't already, please visit the hospital's website to learn more about our hospital and staff.

To start asking us questions or just providing feedback or sharing stories, just click on "comments".

Have fun! We anxiously await your comments!

- HVH Staff

15 comments:

tricia said...

my pug is expecting puppies i breed her about 3 weeks ago. I now notice a bit of a smell comming from her, but there is no discharge! is this normal? thank you for your comments...

Dr. Ku said...

Hi Tricia,
Without examining your pet it is difficult to give medical advice. The normal gestation period for dogs is 63 days. You pug may have a vaginal infection or urinary tract infection creating the odor, but it could also be something else. I recommend you seek the care of a veterinarian if you are concerned. There may be some delay in responding to blog entries, so you may not want to use this forum for any medical emergencies. Thank you for your comment.
Dr. Ku

Chris said...

Our dog contracted round worm even though he has regularly received Sentinel heartworm medication. Does this mean we should switch to a different heartworm medication or could the round worm have been some kind of unusual incident unrelated to Sentinel's effectiveness?

Dr. Ku said...

Hi Chris,
Sentinel is effective at deworming your dog against roundworms when he receives it, but if he is exposed to the parasite in between doses, he may have the parasite until the next treatment. I think it is as effective as any of the other heartworm medications, and use it on my own dogs regularly. Regular removal of waste will help prevent recontamination, and depending on your pet's lifestyle, exposure at the park, beach, etc., may also be a factor.
Dr. Ku

Anonymous said...

We have a 8-month old Shih Tzu. At first I thought he was schizophrenic or bi-polar or something because on occasion he'd INSTANTLY go from calm to super-hyper, running around the house at full speed - back and forth - jumping, barking, etc. In other words, he turns into a wild monster for a period of time! However, we've now caught on that this behavior normally occurs right before (or right after) he takes a poop. Now, when he starts running like crazy, we just casually refer to it as his "poop run." However, I'm curious why he does this? Is there any chance he has a health problem that is causing him pain when he poops? If it represents a possible risk to him, then of course we want to have him looked at by a vet. However, if not then I'd hate to take him to a professional just to say "he runs when he poops." Any thoughts?

Dr. Ku said...

Hi Anonymous,
Some dogs do get "excited" after they poop as if they have accomplished something special, and indeed, it is a special event especially if performed in the correct location. He may be proud of this and anticipating the praise/reward with excitement. On the other hand, dogs with excess or unexpelled energy may exhibit "craziness" when in reality it is just a way to release energy. Regular walks often do wonders to calm and channel that energy so that your puppy will feel and behave more "normally." Lastly, it is entirely possible that something hurts when he poops and that causes the excitement. You may want to observe him in the process of passing his bowel movement for any other signs of pain or discomfort, and have a stool specimen checked for parasites. If you are at all wondering if it may be uncomfortable for him, you should have him checked by a professional. Hope that helps!
Dr. Ku

Anonymous said...

I have been giving my dog Cheweez (Purina Brand) for a while now. Cheweez are beefhide chews that have different flavors such as beef and chicken. You see, I attended a training session and the trainer said that rawhides are not digestible. Is this true? I am not exactly sure what the differnece is between rawhide and beefhide, but i just was concerned that i may be giving my dog something that is not safe for him. Cheweez are in the shape of a strip, and as he chews on it, he also eats it. I have seen nothing wrong with him, and they help keep his teeth clean, but are they(Cheweez) safe to eat?

I have attatched a link for further information.

http://cheweez.com/GetPage.aspx?ContentID=1069&menuitemid=932

Thank you very much, and this will be very appreciated!

Dr. Ku said...

Hi Anonymous,
I admit I don't know the technical difference between rawhide and beefhide, but I'm assuming that rawhide is like raw "leather" or skin and that beefhide is basically the same except from a cattle or cows specifically. Generally depending on their degree of thickness or how they are treated, they may or may not be digestible. Cheweez in particular, if actually chewed into small pieces, will likely be fairly digestible. Nutritionally there may not be alot of value to these chews, but for many dogs, they are good for working the gums and removing tartar and plaque from the rear teeth through the mechnics of chewing. In general, I think they are safe for most dogs, but you must observe your dog and be sure they are not swallowed whole. Not only will this defeat the purpose of this type of treat, but it will also make digestibility alot harder. I personally use a similar treat for my dogs with CET toothpaste embedded called CET Chews. The size of your pet and their chewing habits will determine whether certain beefhide or rawhide chews are acceptable. CE Chews come in several sizes and degrees of digestibility.
Thanks for your questions.
Dr. Ku

Anonymous said...

Hi, I was curious to learn about what you think about your job as a Veterinarian. I am interested in going to school to become one and I just wanted any advice regarding the job. I am aware that it contains a lot of hard work and dedication, but I was interested in finding out more. Any comments you have will help!

thank you, and it is very appreciated.

Anonymous said...

I was wondering what the difference is between organic pet food and other pet food such as Iams. What would be your concerns for a dog on organic pet foods? What vitamins, if any, could they be missing out on? What are the main things one should look for when deciding on what to feed their dog? I feed my dogs Iams but was considering feeding them Eagle pack holistic select pet foods. Here is a link to their web site.
Thank you for your time.

http://www.eaglepack.com/Pages/HS_Home.html

Dr. Ku said...

Hi Anonymous,
I do enjoy being a veterinarian very much. It was a lot of extra work getting to this point, and the compensation economically is not as rewarding as many other professionals with similar educational background and investment; however, I have never regretted the career choice. As a veterinarian, you are able to work with caring and generally very unselfish people, as well as very loyal and trusting patients. Your day is never the same and variety is something you must enjoy to enjoy being a vet. You have to be a detective at times and it is fun when you are able to figure things out and develop a plan and actually fix a problem. You get to learn and become proficient at many different things within the medical profession that human medicine strictly differentiates such as dentistry, surgery, radiology, pediatrics, geriatrics, oncology, lab sciences, etc. The job is more physical than some so if you are restless at a desk all day, it will keep you on your feet. Veterinary medicine is probably not for you if you like to be alone, don't like to educate your clientele, and have a strong aversion to bodily functions and fluids. Good luck and hopefully if it is for you, we will have a new colleague soon!
Dr. Ku

Dr. Ku said...

Hello Anonymous regarding diet,
Pet food and diets is an area that many people have many opinions about. A few things to keep in mind when thinking about dog food diets are: who is providing you with information and what training in nutrition or veterinary medicine do they have; what do canines in the wild generally eat vs what humans eat and generally believe to be "better" or "healthier" and why; how healthy is your dog and what differences do you want to see or expect to see from their diet. There are many different pet food selections available to us, partly because no one diet is best for every pet, but also because so many different opinions exist and personal preferences that the pet food market can monopolize on - and there is money to be made on a necessary commodity. To answer your question specifically, the main difference between a product like IAMS and an "organic" or "holistic" diet is that the grains and vegetable materials that are grown and tracked presumably can claim an "organically grown" label. "Human quality" ingredients does not imply that ingredients used by non-organic diets are not "human grade or quality". That is a claim that is not protected by any type of standard. Many foods that end up in pet foods, holistic or not, are not what you would purchase at your local market despite what they may imply. Having said that, they may not need to be. First of all, we are driven in our own diet by aesthetics. Bruises, blemishes, a few bugs, etc. are not acceptable to many at the dinner table, but nutritionally don't necessarily change the value of the food. Dogs are much more forgiving about aesthetics and dog food in general hides many of these details. Marketing labels, ads, and descriptions may change your perception dramatically though, and your dog isn't buying the food. Secondly, canine diets are not the same as human diets nor should they be. In the wild, canines eat mainly recently killed animals and get their grains and vegetables from the ingesta of the animal they are ingesting. It is most likely not carrots, peas and tomatoes. When you break down nutritional needs, you have to look at the balance of carbohydrates, protein, fiber, vitamins, fats and fatty acids, essential amino acids, and minerals. This balance is well researched by veterinary nutritionists and tested on dogs with longer term scientific studies with some of the bigger brands (like IAMs/Eukanuba and Science Diet and Purina), as well as many veterinary schoools. Other companies rely largely on this research to develop their own diets, but most smaller companies do not do feeding trials. Lastly, holistic and organic diets often have little or no preservatives. This has pros and cons. The pros are less additives and synthetically derived chemicals. The con is that they can spoil more easily, and in quantity or in wearhouses, it is difficult to ensure that pet food will not spoil before it reaches your pet. Pets are susceptible to molds, salmonella and other bacteria and can develop gastroenteritis if they receive them too.
As you can tell, your question does not have a simple or "best" answer. You should discuss your pets needs and your own expectations with your veterinarian, and not necessarily rely on the advice of your pet store or grocery sales person as they may be trained and motivated by marketing interests. Hope that helps a little!
Dr. Ku

Shawn said...

We have an eight year old Golden Retriever in good health. What are some of the serious health issues that he might face as he ages? Like people, is cancer a big risk for Goldens as they get older? If so, what kind of cancers? I've heard that bone cancer is one kind. Would regular blood work, once or twice a year, be sufficiently proactive? We want to keep him around as long as possible.

Dr. Ku said...

Hi Shawn,

Goldens are wonderful dogs and like other larger breeds, they do have a statistically shorter life expectancy than some breeds; however, many do live to be healthy older pets. They can get cancer. Lymphoma and osteosarcoma (bone cancer) are two types of cancers they can get, but like us, they are able to get any type of cancer. If detected early, the options are always greater. It is a good idea to have routine bloodwork and urinalyses, as well as regular physical check-ups. After age 8 and certainly after age 10, we suggest a bi-annual check up. Weight changes, heart murmurs, dental problems, etc., can change in a matter of months, not just years, especially as our pets age. Metabolic problems like hypothyroidism, kidney disease, liver problems, etc. are often treatable, and much easier to do so when detected early. If problems are detected, more frequent monitoring may be suggested. Good luck with your Golden. Having any pet for that length of time is special, and the bond you have created is forever.

Dr. Ku

Danielle said...

I've been noticing my dog has bad breath. I can see plaque on my dog's back teeth...what can I do to keep my dog's teeth healthy? How often should I brush my dog's teeth, and will it help with the problem now?