Circovirus in Dogs FAQ

This page answers pet owners’ common questions about the recently discovered canine circovirus and its possible role in disease in dogs.

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Platelet Enhancement Therapy (PET)

Like their owners, a large number of pets will develop arthritis as they age. In fact, veterinarians estimate that more than 15 million dogs already suffer from this disease. Thankfully, a new protocol that uses platelet rich plasma from your pet’s own blood may provide some hope to veterinarians and pet owners.

Modern Veterinary Anesthesia

Many pet owners have heard tales of anesthetic mishaps. What are veterinarians doing to make sure your pet stays safe when a surgical treatment is needed?

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Spayed and Neutered Dogs Live Longer

We talked recently about a study that revealed an increase in the incidence of some significant diseases in neutered male and female dogs in comparison to intact individuals. Disease incidence is important, but the statistic that is of greatest interest to most pet owners is survivability, in other words, “what effect will a particular decision (e.g., neutering) have on my dog’s lifespan.”

Research published on April 17, 2013 in the online journal PLoS ONE looked at the decision to neuter dogs …

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Canine Vaccination Series: Part 1

I’m afraid that sometimes I get distracted by the more esoteric aspects of veterinary medicine — the latest and greatest treatment for some rare disease that most of you (hopefully) will never encounter. I want to take some time to focus on something that all pet owners have to deal with … vaccines. Specifically, trying to help you understand how veterinarians determine which preventative vaccinations a particular dog should and should not receive.

To answer this question, it is helpful …

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Registry helps pet owners find clinical trials for cancer treatment

Cancer is the foremost killer of older dogs and cats, but pets stricken with the disease are gaining new options from clinica -More-

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Feeding the Large and Giant Breed Puppy

Veterinarians and pet owners have long been concerned about the various joint disorders that are so common in the giant breeds like Great Danes, Irish Wolfhounds, Bernese Mountain dogs, Saint Bernards and the Newfies. The larger breeds like Rotties, Labs, Goldens, and German Sheperds are also over-represented with conditions like hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, osteochondrosis dissecans (OCD) of the shoulders, knee, carpi (wrists) and tarsi (ankles), hypertrophic osteodystrophy (HOD), and panosteitis.

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Parvovirus in Puppies

I work at a large hospital located in central Phoenix. For the last two weeks, we have seen a surge in parvovirus infections in puppies. While some of them were not vaccinated to prevent the disease, I am also seeing some dogs who were vaccinated. Here is the problem, in an effort to save money the pet owners bought vaccines from a feed store, pet store or on-line. Some paid their the pup’s breeders to give the shots. In each of these cases, I am concerned that these vaccines were either stored, …

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Safe Halloween Tips for Pet Families

Halloween can be a fun family event, but can be a dangerous holiday for your pet. Here are a few safety tips to help you through the holiday.

Keep your pet inside

Some dogs can be overwhelmed by all the little visitors coming to your door and ringing the door bell. Also the costumes can be scary for your pet. It is their natural instinct to protect their “pack” from strangers and you do not want any of your little trick-or-treaters to get hurt.

Contain your dog

Some dogs will need to be confined to a separate room to limit excitement or injury. If taking your dog outside, be sure he is on a leash at all times.

Act normally

If your dog does seem anxious, continue to act as normal as possible. By giving your dog extra attention to try and reassure them, it will actually re-enforce the behavior and communicate to the pet that there is something to worry about and will result with increasing the anxiety rather than calming them.

Wear ID Tags or Microchip your pet

Just in case your dog does get loose, you will want to make sure he is wearing a current ID tag or is micro-chipped so he will more likely to be returned to you. We now have an ID tag engraver and a large selection of ID tags in stock at the clinic. We can custom engrave a tag for your pet in minutes.

Help your dog get used to costumes

Expose your dog to the costumes your kids will wear before the big day. Allow them to sniff them and let your kids model them so they will get used to them with out  all the excitement. Avoid wearing masks around your dog because that can scare them even more.

Costumes on your dog

While some dogs are used to being dressed in sweaters or dresses, a lot of dogs do not like it. Do not wait until the big night to try your pet’s costume on. Start several days to weeks early and put the costume on when there is not a lot of excitement and watch them closely.  If your dog is still not used to wearing his costume, a colorful bandana or his birthday suit will have to do. We have a great selection of dog costumes in stock at the clinic and a larger selection at our website

Keep the treats away from your pet

Candy – especially chocolate or the artificial sweetener, xylitol – can make your dog very sick resulting in a trip to the Doggie ER. Some dogs have been known to devour the candy haul, sticks, wrappers and all. Keep all candy well out of reach of your pet in a pet proof container.

Fire Safety

Keep candles and lighted pumpkins away from your pet and never leave a burning candle and your pet home alone. A swishing tail is all it takes to knock over a candle and set your house ablaze or injure your pet.

With a just a little preparations and keeping the the actions of your pet in mind, your Halloween will be a fun night rather than a nightmare.

Beware of Chicken Jerky Treats from China

The FDA is continuing to caution pet owners about potential problems from chicken jerky treats originating from China.  The first warnings were issues in 2007 and 2008 with a drop in the number of cases in 2010, however, more than 350 cases have been reported to the FDA in 2011.  See report on MSNBC

The dogs affected from the treats are showing symptoms of vomiting, diarrhea and lethargy. Some dogs have also exhibited signs related to a decrease in their kidney function by drinking more water and an increase in their urination.

There was not a specific brand of treats cited, but all complaints have been on chicken jerky treats obtained from China.

Most of the dogs that have had problems are the smaller dogs that have eaten the treats within a few weeks before becoming sick. A lot of these dogs consumed the treats as a large part of their diet. Some pets had upset stomachs and some suffered renal failure. Most dogs have recovered with treatment, but there are some unconfirmed cases of a few dogs dying from their illness.

Treats, especially jerky treats should only be fed occasionally and not as a major portion of your pet’s diet. If your pet does experience vomiting or diarrhea, please contact your veterinarian for diagnostics and treatment. Especially with the smaller dogs, they can become quite dehydrated within a short period of time and may need intravenous fluids until their tiny stomachs can tolerate food again. Be sure to mention any treats your dog may have consumed or any change of diet to your veterinarian.
If you suspect a problem stemming from a treat or pet food, you and your veterinarian can report it to