Kitty Kryptonite:Feline Kidney Disease

Feline kidney disease can cause your cat to be sickWe all have our strengths and weaknesses. When it comes to our bodies, things are no different. Each of us have organs and body systems that work better than others, be it a diseased immune system, a congenital heart issue, or a sensitive gastrointestinal tract.

Cats as a group tend to have a temperamental urinary system. This organ system results in more than its fair share of vet visits for our feline friends, be it for a urinary tract infection, a cystitis flare, or for feline kidney disease. No matter what the issue, Carriage Hills Animal Hospital is equipped to help your cat make the best of a flawed urinary tract. Continue…

A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Words:  Advanced Imaging in Veterinary Medicine

Advanced imaging in veterinary medicine helps pet healthMost pet owners in the area have come to appreciate Carriage Hills Animal Hospital for the high quality care that we provide. Many patients come to us with serious illnesses or injuries, and we are sure to have the expertise and resources at our disposal to help them have the best prognosis possible.

For more complicated internal medicine cases, proper and expedient diagnostics are required in order to gain the information needed to provide the best care for our patients. Modalities such as abdominal ultrasound and echocardiography are included in important options for advanced imaging in veterinary medicine. Continue…

Leave It! What’s Your Policy for Pet Safety Around Snakes?

Pet safety around snakes is no joke.This time of year it’s increasingly common to have an encounter with a snake. Whether they’re swimming through the lake directly towards you and your pet, or you encounter one while out for a walk together, the fact is you have to be on your guard. Many pets are downright intrigued when it comes to a slithering serpent, while others may get struck in a surprise attack. Water moccasins, or cottonmouths, have a reputation for being rather aggressive, so it’s best to have a proactive approach to pet safety around snakes.

A Lay of the Land

There are many – venomous and non-venomous – water snakes. While you may teach and train your pet to leave all snakes alone, we recommend at least a fundamental, working knowledge of what a water moccasin looks like:

  • Heavy-looking or thick body shape
  • Tan to brown coloring with darker cross bands
  • Rough-looking scales
  • Thick or blocky head shape
  • A visibly narrow-looking neck
  • Dark eye stripe or facial band
  • Vertical pupil
  • Heat-detecting facial pits between the eye and nostril

These snakes will not retreat before attacking a perceived threat, increasing the need for pet safety around snakes.

Avoidance Is Key

Most pet owners are highly tuned into possible dangers facing their pets while out and about. Taking it an extra step further, we offer the following helpful measures for pet safety around snakes:

  • Keep your pet’s off-leash time to a minimum
  • Discourage exploration near tall grasses, overgrown areas, or thick underbrush
  • Do not play catch the stick with your dog in bodies of water known for cottonmouths (they may inadvertently get ahold of one in the mouth, but rattlesnakes and copperheads can swim, too!)
  • Do not pick up or turn over large stones
  • Do not reach into crevices or holes

You’ll Know When It Happens

Pet safety around snakes must also include knowing the signs of a snake bite, and what to do to help your pet. Water moccasins are venomous and can cause:

  • Extreme pain at the bite site
  • Redness and swelling
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Breathing difficulty
  • Blurry vision or vision loss
  • Numbness in the face and limbs
  • Increased salivation
  • Weakness

Inspect the bites marks closely if if your pet allows you to. Attempt to wash the wound with clean, soapy water and then wrap the area in sterile dressing. Seek emergency care immediately and on the way be sure to:

  • Remove the collar from the neck if there’s swelling
  • Keep the bite mark below your pet’s heart level
  • Calm your pet as much as possible, taking care to keep them as stationary as possible

Pet Safety Around Snakes

Pet safety around snakes is so critical because of the terrible consequences of a venomous bite. Low blood pressure, kidney damage, and blood clotting disorders are among them.

Once your pet is examined, we’ll test their blood. Pain medication, antihistamines, IV fluids, and more may be necessary. Sometimes, effects of snake bites aren’t exactly clear until later, increasing the importance of monitoring and repeated lab work.

Move Quickly

If you need our assistance with pet safety around snakes, please let us know at Carriage Hills Animal Hospital. Stay safe out there!

Understanding Feline Leukemia

understand and learn how to help protect your pet against feline leukemia virusCats, like any other creature, are susceptible to a variety of infectious diseases that can have serious consequences on health and well-being. One such infectious disease that cat lovers need to have an understanding of is feline leukemia. This viral infection is truly one to avoid when possible, and at Carriage Hills Animal Hospital we are here to arm you with the knowledge you need to do so.

The Pathophysiology Behind Feline Leukemia

While the leukemia that affects our human loved-ones is the result of a cancerous process, feline leukemia is actually caused by an infectious virus. Feline leukemia virus (FeLV) is a retrovirus, similar to HIV in people. It results in a serious infection that may appear even several years after exposure to the virus. Continue…

Eye of the Tiger: Feline Vision

Feline vision is different than human vision. Perspective can be an amazing thing. Looking at a situation from a different angle can shed light on many situations.

As cat lovers, we at Carriage Hills Animal Hospital find that  sometimes looking at the world from a feline perspective can be very helpful. Keep reading to see the world through a cat’s eyes by understanding more about feline vision.

Vision Basics

Humans, cats, and dogs alike are very dependent on vision for day to day function. Feline vision plays a central role in hunting and social behaviors, too.

No matter what your species, the eye works similarly in most animals. Light enters the front of the eye through the clear windshield-like cornea. It then passes through the lens, which focuses light on the retina. The retina is a layer of cells at the back of the eye made up of: Continue…

Service Spotlight: The Online Pet Pharmacy at Carriage Hills Animal Hospital

Use a trusted veterinarian online pet pharmacyOnline shopping has become the new normal in our modern world. You can order anything from groceries, household goods, clothing, and more to be delivered right to your doorstep. Pet owners aren’t excluded from the online shopping phenomenon, as they, too, can order nearly everything their pets need without ever getting off the couch.

While the internet and online shopping certainly has its place in our modern world, it can bring with it some serious, and even deadly, concerns, especially when it comes to ordering pet medications online. Carriage Hills Animal Hospital wants all of our beloved patients to stay safe and healthy, which is why we are now offering you the convenience and safety of a trusted online pet pharmacy.

Buyer Beware

It can be tempting to search out a good deal online for the medications or parasite preventives your pet needs. The lower prices and convenience of some online pet pharmacies can certainly sway you to order the medications rather than going through your veterinarian. Continue…

The Buzz About Pet Safe Mosquito Control

Pet Safe Mosquito Control is an important part of controlling heartworm disease in pets They are the most deadly creatures on Earth. Not to be outdone by the bear, the lion, or the shark, mosquitoes are responsible for carrying all sorts of deadly diseases, as well as being the epitome of annoyance.

Most of us just want to enjoy the outdoors in peace, without the hum of a winged nuisance in the background. With pest control, however, comes chemicals. What’s a pet owner to do when it comes to defending ourselves against these tiny pests? Carriage Hills Animal Hospital is here to help with pet safe mosquito control tips just for you.

The Deadly Mosquito

It is no secret that mosquitoes are the bearers of sickness and death to people and animals all over the world. They are able to transmit many blood-borne diseases through their bite, including: Continue…

Pet Nutrition: What’s Your Pet Food IQ?

Good pet nutrition is an important part of pet health and good veterinary care.Protein, essential fatty acids, fat content, and carbohydrates… These terms are well-known, but when it comes to pet nutrition, a lot of different factors come into play. For instance, an animal’s breed, age, lifestyle, and existing health conditions can set into motion a whole flurry of questions about what they need nutritionally, and what they can do without. All pets benefit from an individualized, balanced diet, and some animals require additional nutritional supplements and vitamins.

Carriage Hills Animal Hospital is here to help decode what’s right for your sweet pet.

The Label

Pet food labels can be very frustrating to read, let alone understand. Getting a grip on the nutritional standards of pet food starts with recognizing the endorsement of the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO). If the pet nutrition is balanced and complete, the label will say it’s been formulated to meet nutrient profiles, or that it provides nutrition for intended animals. Continue…

Pets and Slime: A Possibly Perilous Match

pets and slimeOne of the biggest trends among children is slime, although people of all ages find it intriguing. This gooey, stretchy, globby stuff has infiltrated craft and art supply stores, toy stores, schools, and Facebook feeds detailing quality recipes. While it’s definitely fun, pets and slime don’t mix. The worst part? Most animals are fascinated with whatever children are into, making an already dangerous situation even worse.

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Warm Weather on the Horizon: Rattlesnake Safety and Your Pet

rattlesnake safetyLike most wildlife, rattlesnakes become active when temperatures warm up, and spring is in full swing. Like many wild species, rattlesnakes are part of our urban environment now, as much as coyotes and raccoons. Living among these wild species, it’s important to know a bit about rattlesnake safety and your pet. The team at Carriage Hills Animal Hospital is here to help!

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