In this issue:
New Website Feature
Preparation for Hurricane Season
Article by Dr. Scarzella - Let's Talk About Teeth!
Spud - Available for Adoption
New to our Website
We know it can sometimes feel a bit hectic when you come to check in for boarding between answering all of our questions about your pet's needs and saying goodbye to your furry friend. We have added a brand new feature to our website in an attempt to expedite your drop-off process. Our online Boarding Release form will allow you to answer all of our questions about your pet's care and needs while you are away prior to arrival for boarding. This form can be submitted electronically or can be printed and brought along with you at check-in. Check it out at collegeroadanimalhospital.com under Clinic Info > Clinic Forms.
Preparing for Pet Care During Hurricane Season
Hurricane Season is upon the Carolinas and it is important to prepare for caring for your family and your home in the event of an emergency. Use these suggestions as a guideline to prepare for your pet's care in the event of a power outage or evacuation.
-Plan for a place for your pet to stay. It is illegal for boarding facilities, including veterinary hospitals, to board animals during an impending catastrophe if there is any chance that staff may be unable to reach the facility to care for the pets. Be sure to arrange to take your pet with you or make plans with a facility or caregiver that is sure they will be able to provide the care your loved one requires.
-Have enough of your pet's food and medication to last a couple of weeks. Keep in mind that delivery trucks' regular schedules may be affected by emergencies. If your pet's medication requires refrigeration, find out ahead of time how long it can be stored at room temperature and, if needed, make plans to keep it at the appropriate temperature long-term.
-Be sure your pet is up-to-date on core vaccinations. Have a copy of your pet's vaccine records and, if necessary, medical records on hand if your pet is evacuating with you to a shelter or if your pet may be going to a boarding facility.
-Research veterinary facilities local to the area to which you are evacuating with your pet. In the event of a medical emergency while you are away from your regular vet, it can help decrease stress to have a backup plan in mind.
-Talk to your veterinarian about sedatives or anti-nausea medications for travel ahead of time. In the days leading up to an impending emergency, the vet's office is inundated with calls requesting medication for emergency travel and having these medications already on hand can save time as well as guarantee availability in the event that the clinic sells out of these in-demand medications.
The most important thing to remember is not to leave your fur-babies behind. Even if you expect to return in a day or two, this may become impossible and your pets cannot fend for themselves. If you find that you have any questions or concerns while planning for your pet's care during a catastrophe, don't hesitate to reach out to us for help in determining your best plan of action.
Employee Spotlight: Amber Steeley
Amber Steeley moved to Wilmington in September 2015 from York, P.A. She attended school for Biology and has been a Veterinary Technician since 2007. Amber shares her home with her husband Mike, dog Carl, and Katy Cat. In her free time she enjoys sewing & crafting, going to the beach and spending time with family and friends. You can usually find Amber at our College Road office, so stop by to say hello to her!
Let's Talk About Teeth!
By Gina Scarzella, DVM
We've got them and so do our pets. We love teeth at College Road and Carolina Beach Animal Hospitals. They are an integral part of whole body health for your pets and we'll talk more about how you can keep those pearly whites healthy!
First off, there are a ton of options for keeping teeth healthy, so we just need to find one that works for you and your furry friend. The most common complaint we hear from clients is that their pet's "breath smells", and we all know how much we love getting wet kisses. When there is an odor, that indicates that there is plaque accumulating at the gumline along with bacteria. The bacteria hanging around then leads to inflammation of the gums, or gingivitis, and then hardening of the plaque, which is called calculus. This is like cement and really cannot be removed without a proper dental cleaning under anesthesia. If their dental disease is advanced, then a pet can have periodontal disease, or disease of the structures that make teeth viable and healthy. This leads to teeth falling out and to pain, which is hard for us to assess just by looking at the teeth.
Did you know that plaque can build up in as little as 24 hours? This is why everyday oral healthcare is extremely important!
So what can you do at home? There are a few options:
1. Brushing your pet's teeth daily with pet-approved toothpaste helps to remove plaque and prevents calculus from forming.
2. If your dog does not have a sensitive stomach and is not a gulper, dental chews such as Veggie Dents, Oravet chews, or Greenies are a great daily treat. These help clean the surface of the teeth like a toothbrush.
3. Another option is using a water additive called Healthy Mouth. It splashes the teeth every time they drink and prevents plaque buildup. This is a great product if your pet is not a great chewer or will not allow you to brush.
4. There are complete balanced diets that are targeted at oral health. These include Royal Canin Dental food and t/d from Science Diet. These are an easy way to practice daily oral health just by feeding your pet.
How about cleaning their teeth? It is recommended by the Veterinary Oral Health Council to have a complete oral health exam and treatment, which we commonly refer to as a "dental cleaning", under anesthesia once a year. This allows for a thorough exam of your pet's mouth, radiographs of all their teeth and the structures surrounding their teeth, a comprehensive cleaning (just like your dentist performs), and, the best part, fresh breath! This is something that can be discussed at more length at your next visit if you are interested in pursuing a dental procedure. We ensure that your pet's best interests are taken into consideration as well as that anesthesia is safe for your pet, and most pets are tremendously more comfortable once their dental disease is addressed.
Please call our office to set up an appointment to speak to your veterinarian about an oral healthcare plan for your pet!