Rabies is a highly fatal viral infection of the nervous system that affects all warm-blooded animal species, including people.
The rabies virus is shed in saliva and transmitted most often from one animal to another through bite wounds. It then travels up through nerves, the spinal cord and eventually the brain. Once in the brain, the signs of rabies occur and death usually occurs within 10 days; it can take weeks to months for the virus to reach the brain, however. Throughout the world, 35,000 people die each year from rabies. In the United States, about 3 people succumb each year to rabies.
Signs of rabies infection include:
- Extreme lethargy
- Abnormal mental status
- Drooling (the muscles of the throat are paralyzed and the animal cannot swallow)
Diagnosing rabies can be difficult. In the early stages, the virus has not yet attacked the brain and the animal acts normally. There are no body changes and no test that can determine if an animal or person was exposed to the virus. Unfortunately, the only way to diagnose rabies is to examine brain tissue, and this can only be done after the animal is dead. This means that testing your pet for rabies is not a test he can survive. Euthanasia is required.Once signs of rabies develop, there is no cure and the disease is fatal.
There is no treatment for those animals in the final stages of the disease. If your pet is showing the signs of rabies, euthanasia and testing is recommended. If your pet is euthanized or dies for reasons not related to rabies and has bitten someone within 10 days before its death, testing is required by law. People exposed to rabies can receive injections to reduce the risk of rabies infection but these injections have not been extensively tested in animals. For information about human testing of advanced rabies, consult your family physician. Due to the serious risk of transmission to humans, animals that have been bitten by another animal with confirmed rabies should be euthanized. For these reasons, reducing the potential risk of rabies in our companion pets is very important.It is so important that vaccinating your pet for rabies is required by law.
The best way to prevent rabies exposure is to have your pet appropriately vaccinated. All states agree that the first rabies vaccine should be given when a pet is around 4-6 months of age. A booster injection 1 year later is necessary. After that, laws vary and some areas require annual rabies vaccination, whereas other areas allow vaccination every 3 years. The vaccine must be administered by a veterinarian. The purpose of the rabies vaccination is to help your pet fight off a rabies infection if it should be exposed to the virus. The vaccine is not a cure for rabies and pets vaccinated against rabies can still become infected with the virus. After initial vaccination, it takes about one month before peak levels of rabies antibodies are reached and the pet is considered immunized for rabies. If you adopt an adult dog or cat without an accurate vaccination history, initial rabies vaccine should be administered with a follow up vaccine one year later. After that, local laws regarding frequency of vaccination apply.It is also important to reduce your pet’s risk of exposure to wildlife.
This is done by keeping your cats indoor and your dogs confined or leash walked only. Allowing your pets to roam will only increase the risk of exposure to rabies. In the United States, rabies is most commonly found in skunks, raccoons, foxes, coyotes and bats. Despite their bad rap, rabies in ferrets is quite uncommon. Recently in the United States, cats have become the number one domestic animal diagnosed with rabies. It is suspected this is due to more cats being kept as pets and allowed to roam their neighborhoods. Both indoor and outdoor cats are required by law to be vaccinated against rabies. Every state and county requires every pet to be vaccinated for rabies. Even indoor cats could be at risk of getting out and being bitten by a rabid animal. An additional benefit is that IF your cat ever does bite someone, you and your cat will be in compliance with the law since your cat will have had all of the required rabies vaccines.Rabies perpetuates because of the wild animal reservoirs.
Foxes, raccoons, skunks, coyotes and bats have high rates of rabies infections and exposure to these animals is the primary method rabies is spread to our pets and us. In people, the current US cases of rabies have been associated with bat exposure. Bats have tiny sharp teeth. You may have been bitten but do not know it and may not find any marks. Children and incapacitated people may be unable to tell if a bite occurred. Consult your physician immediately if: A. you were sleeping and woke to find a bat in your room, B. a bat is found in a room with an unattended child, mentally challenged individual or intoxicated person, or C. if the bat is not available for testing, many physicians will recommend rabies exposure treatment.If a person is bitten by an unvaccinated dog or cat, euthanasia and testing is recommended.
Another alternative is to isolate the animal for 6 months. If after 6 months no signs of rabies appear, the animal can be vaccinated and released from quarantine.If a person is bitten by a vaccinated dog or cat, the animal is observed for 10 days.
If signs of rabies develop, the animal should be euthanized and tested for rabies. The reason for the 10 day quarantine is that if the animal was shedding the virus when he/she bit the person, he/she would be dead from rabies within 10 days. If the animal appears normal after 10 days, then he/she was not shedding the virus at the time of the bite. It does not, however, mean the animal is free from rabies. The virus may not have reached the brain yet. (If this is the case, the animal was still not contagious when he/she bit the person). Contact your physician for human treatment guidelines and recommendations. Every animal bite should be reported to your local rabies or animal control center.World Rabies Day Mission: The mission of World Rabies Day is to raise awareness about the impact of rabies in people and animals, how easy it is to prevent it, and how to eliminate the main global sources. Even though the major impact of rabies occurs in regions of the world where many needs are present, rabies should no longer be neglected. The tools and technology for human rabies prevention and dog rabies elimination are available.
World Rabies Day is Saturday, September 28, 2013
World Rabies Day events have educated 150 million people and vaccinated 4.6 million animals worldwide!
Rabies in humans is 100% preventable through prompt appropriate medical care. Yet, more than 55,000 people, mostly in Africa and Asia, die from rabies every year - a rate of one person every ten minutes. The most important global source of rabies in humans is from uncontrolled rabies in dogs. Children are often at greatest risk from rabies. They are more likely to be bitten by dogs, and are also more likely to be severely exposed through multiple bites in high-risk sites on the body. Severe exposures make it more difficult to prevent rabies unless access to good medical care is immediately available. This major source of rabies in humans can be eliminated through ensuring adequate animal vaccination and control, educating those at risk, and enhancing access of those bitten to appropriate medical care.
We here at Hope Animal Medical Center want to keep you and your pet protected. Please call us if you are in need of updating your pet’s rabies vaccination status. We offer 1 year rabies vaccinations as well as 3 year rabies vaccinations (if previous vaccination has been sufficient).
Hope Animal Medical Center is proud to continue our partnership with Southeastern Guide Dogs. We provide these wonderful service dogs with our quality service. If you have any questions please feel free to call us at 706-546-7879. Find out more information on Southeastern Guide Dogs at www.guidedogs.org.
The Importance of Nutrition
Balanced nutrition is an essential part of an active, healthy lifestyle. Your pet needs plenty of fresh water and should be fed good quality food in amounts sufficient to meet energy and caloric requirements. Inadequate or excess intake of nutrients can be equally harmful. The food your pet eats plays an important role in his or her overall health and well-being. The Difference Between Dogs and Cats
Dogs are omnivores, which means they can eat a variety of foods to meet their energy requirements. Completely balanced vegetarian diets can be fed to dogs without fear of causing any nutritional deficiency. However, cats have always been carnivores. Cats have some unique nutritional needs that a strictly vegetarian diet cannot satisfy. These include: Arachidonic Acid (an essential fatty acid, which is not found in plant sources), Taurine (an amino acid that cats cannot synthesize in adequate amounts), Vitamin A, and Niacin. In addition to these dietary peculiarities, your cat requires a high amount of protein in his diet, about 12 percent in comparison to 4 percent for adult dogs. Unlike you, your cat does very well on a high-fat diet. Fat gives him needed energy, assists the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins (Vitamins A and E), and adds taste.Memorize Our List of Foods to Avoid
Our experts at the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center urge you to avoid feeding the following foods to your pet: alcoholic beverages, avocado, chocolate, coffee, fatty foods, grapes and raisins, macadamia nuts, moldy or spoiled foods, onion and onion powder, salt, yeast dough, garlic, and products sweetened with xylitol. AAFCO Statements
The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) is an organization that publishes regulations for nutritional adequacy of “complete and balanced” dog and cat foods. Your pet’s food should conform to minimal AAFCO standards.
These nutritional adequacy standards are defined by two nutrient profiles based upon a pet’s stage of life: 1. Adult maintenance
, and 2. Growth and reproduction
. Pet foods rated for “growth and reproduction” are designed for puppies/kittens and pregnant or lactating females. Every pet food label must contain a statement and validation of nutritional adequacy.
AAFCO regulations allow two basic methods for pet food manufacturers to substantiate claims:
1. Formulation Method
— Requires the manufacturer to formulate the food to meet the AAFCO nutrient profiles for dogs and cats. This method is less time consuming and less expensive because feeding trials with pets are not required, only a calculation of the nutrient levels.
An example of an AAFCO statement using the formulation method would be: "Brand ABC Cat Food is formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by AAFCO Cat Food Profiles for maintenance of adult cats."
2. Feeding Trial Method
— Requires the manufacturer perform an AAFCO-protocol feeding trial using the food as the sole source of nutrition. This is the Gold Standard or preferred method, and it documents the pets' performance when fed the food.
An example of an AAFCO statement using the feeding trial method would be: "Animal feeding tests using AAFCO procedures substantiate that Brand X Dog Food provides complete and balanced nutrition for maintenance of adult dogs." (From hillspet.com)
An animal’s energy needs are based on its body weight. The daily caloric requirements for an individual animal depend on its physiological state, such as adult maintenance, growth, pregnancy, or lactation. Other determining factors include the animal’s activity and temperament, environmental temperature, and the diet’s digestibility. Less active dogs and cats require considerably fewer calories per day. On any feeding program animals should be weighed at frequent intervals to evaluate appropriateness of measurements and for adjusting caloric intake. Determining energy requirements for cats is easier than dogs because body size of cats varies little.
Pet food labels recommend feeding amounts in a range of cups given at certain ages for a puppy/kitten, maturing to a given weight range for adult pets. This range of cups can vary greatly, and can be quite confusing. It is most important to judge how much to feed by an additional evaluation of the pet’s appearance. The desired condition varies with certain breeds – some tend to be more solid, others more trim. Just remember: Lean pets live longer, healthier lives than those who are overweight. Body Condition Scoring
Veterinarians typically use a measurement called a body condition score to assess whether a pet is underweight, overweight, or just right (healthy). Your veterinarian can use this scale to show you the proper way to assess your pet’s weight. If you’re unsure what your pet’s optimum weight should be, perform this simple test: Place your hands on your pet’s rib cage with your thumbs on the back. Your pet is a healthy weight if:
1. You can easily feel its ribs, 2. It has a tucked abdomen and no sagging fat deposits, and 3. You can see its waist from above. Your pet is overweight if:
1. You can feel fat between the skin and ribs or you have difficulty feeling its ribs, 2. It has a large abdomen that hangs down, and you can grab a handful of fat, and 3. It has a broad, flat back and no visible waist. Battle the Bulge
“As more Americans confront their own weight issues, furry housemates increasingly struggle alongside them. Data from 2011 indicates that the problem is reaching epidemic proportions, with more than half of U.S. dogs and cats now overweight or obese. “ [From WSJ.com (Wall Street Journal)] Many owners view an overweight pet as simply a cosmetic issue. They do not understand the health risks involved with excess weight. Diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes mellitus, osteoarthritis, liver disease and skin issues are more common in obese animals. Overweight pets also face increased risk during anesthesia and surgery. Studies have revealed that obese dogs have a shorter lifespan than their normal weight counterparts.
What’s the best way to tip the scales in your pet’s favor? Gradually decrease her food intake while increasing her activity level. You can switch to a reduced calorie food or make a cutback in the portion size of her regular food. We recommend a gradual reduction of 10 to 25 percent for cats, and 25 to 33 percent for dogs – but it’s always a good idea to check with your pet’s veterinarian first. Avoid treats that are high in fat and calories, such as cheese, hot dogs, and peanut butter. Raw vegetables and some fruits make excellent low-calorie treats, as do air-popped popcorn, and ice cubes. With careful dietary management and oversight by your veterinarian, changes in diet and lifestyle can lead to a much more productive life. There are prescription diet formulations available from your veterinarian that can make dieting easy for you and your pet. Not enough exercise and too much food will cause any animal to gain weight – especially pets, who rely on you to regulate nutrition and activity levels. Get Moving
Not only will daily exercise keep your pet physically fit and mentally healthy, it helps channel aggressive and destructive behaviors. Regular activity also burns up calories and increases muscle mass and cardiovascular strength. When it comes to canines, individual exercise needs vary based on breed, sex, age and level of health, but a couple of walks around the block every day is probably not enough – especially if your pooch is an adolescent or a member of the sporting, herding, hound or terrier breeds. And if your cat has fallen into bad exercise habits (i.e. sure, she can run – to her food dish!), you will have to engage her in supervised fun and games. Lots of cats love chasing after laser pointers or crinkle-noise-making toys. Always start slow, though, and limit beginning sessions to five minutes or so. We proudly carry Hill’s Veterinary Prescription Diets and Royal Canin Veterinary Diets here at Hope Animal Medical Center.
Hill’s Prescription Diet pet foods are specially formulated to help manage pets with health problems. Backed by extensive clinical studies, Hill’s offers the most reliable and trusted range of therapeutic pet foods. Hill’s manufacturing facilities follow strict sourcing and production processes to ensure premium wellness and therapeutic pet nutrition. Advanced technology allows for efficient handling, blending and processing, resulting in safe, highly nutritious and palatable pet foods. Royal Canin was created in 1967 by a veterinarian, Dr. Jean Cathary, with a focus on developing preventive and therapeutic nutrition for companion animals. Royal Canin also has strict criteria for quality of raw materials during each stage of food production and food safety. Royal Canin was one of the first pet food manufacturers to become ISO-certified, a designation that means they meet international standards for their manufacturing process. All Hill’s and Royal Canin pet foods come with a 100% Guarantee for quality, consistency, and taste.
We offer a wide variety of dog and cat foods that can help specific issues from preventive health (e.g. oral/dental, digestive, and skin health), to chronic disease management (e.g. arthritis, kidney and urinary tract disease, diabetes, and heart disease). We even have a new diet for dogs with anxiety (Royal Canin CALM). Come visit us at Hope Animal Medical Center, call us at 706-546-7879, or visit our website at www.hopeamc.com for more information.
Dr. Jenifer Hope Gustafson
Dr. Sherri Turick
Dr. Angela Dodd
Dr. Lisa Stacy
Help Your Pet(s) Have a Fabulous Fourth
As the holiday approaches, take some time out to consider the safety and comfort of your pet(s). While the Fourth of July is a time for fireworks and celebration, for many pets and their owners it can be a nightmare. As many pet lovers know, fireworks and thunderstorms can cause a great deal of stress and anxiety for some animals. Fear of loud noises such as fireworks, thunder, and gunshots is called noise phobia. Nervous behaviors include: shaking, trembling, whimpering, panting, excessive drooling, howling, barking, refusing to eat, trying to hide or get into/out of the house/fence/or other enclosure, losing control of bladder or bowels or experiencing stress diarrhea. Your anxious pet cannot control its reactions in these situations. Fortunately, many therapies are available to help with this condition. Behavior modification techniques alone work well for some pets, while others may need medications or other supplemental therapies in addition to behavior modification to stay safe and not injure themselves trying to “escape” the noise. As always, the staff at Hope Animal Medical Center is happy to answer any questions or concerns you may have regarding noise phobias in your pet.Here are a few safety tips regarding fireworks and other noises:
- Leave your pets at home and indoors. While it may be tempting to bring your pets along so everyone can enjoy the fun, loud noises are not usually fun for pets. Most pets are afraid of fireworks and may try to run away.
- Close all doors and windows while keeping your pet indoors. Keep your pets safe from the noise in a quiet, sheltered and escape-proof area at home. Close curtains and blinds to block the flashing lights. Try putting on classical music or other soothing background music as a distraction.
- Provide a safe “escape” place. It is important that your pet has a place they consider safe if they become stressed. Many times pets seek out den-like places (like a crate) when they become fearful. If you do have a crate, try to create a comfortable place and familiarize your pet with it before it’s needed.
- Try to distract your pet with chew toys and busy games, or try a thundershirt (www.thundershirt.com) , or play with another pet that does not have fear and anxiety.
- Use a leash or carrier. If you must be outside with your pet, keep your pet on a leash or in a carrier at all times.
- Take your pet for a walk ahead of time. If time, make sure your pet has time to use the restroom before the fireworks start. Some pets become afraid once fireworks start and this may lead to an accident later.
- Make sure your pet is wearing the proper identification tags or it has a microchip. It is important that this information is current and visible in case your pet gets frightened and runs away. This will help local authorities find and identify your pet.
- If you can plan ahead, desensitize your pet to the noise. Try using appropriate sound CDs such as thunder, fireworks, trains, and/or sirens to help pets get used to the noise at a lower volume. Then, as they become more comfortable, gradually increase the volume.
- Never use fireworks around pets! Practice fire safety. Keep your pet away from matches, lighter fuel, open fires, and fireworks. Your curious pet may try to sniff at the fireworks, and pet hair can easily catch on fire. While exposure to lit fireworks can potentially result in severe burns and/or trauma to the face and paws of curious pets, even unused fireworks can pose a danger. Many types contain potentially toxic substances, including potassium nitrate, arsenic and other heavy metals.
- Speak with the staff at Hope Animal Medical Center. If you believe your pet has noise phobias, call or come in to discuss the variety of remedies we have available. We have natural homeopathic remedies, as well as anti-anxiety medications that can help keep your pet calm during the fireworks and thunderstorm seasons.
In addition to the “fun” of fireworks humans enjoy on the Fourth of July, we also like to celebrate the holiday by lounging with family and friends, grilling foods and enjoying some tasty beverages. While it may seem like a great idea to reward your pet with scraps from the grill, in reality some festive foods and products can be potentially hazardous to your pets. The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center offers the following tips:
- Never leave alcoholic drinks unattended where pets can reach them. Alcoholic beverages have the potential to poison pets. If ingested, the animal could become very intoxicated and weak, severely depressed or could go into a coma. Death from respiratory failure is also a possibility in severe cases.
- Always keep matches and lighter fluid out of your pets’ reach. Certain types of matches contain chlorates, which could potentially damage blood cells and result in difficulty breathing – or even kidney disease in severe cases. Lighter fluid can be irritating to skin, and if ingested can produce gastrointestinal irritation and central nervous system depression. If lighter fluid is inhaled, aspiration pneumonia and breathing problems could develop.
- Do not apply any sunscreen or insect repellant product to your pet that is not labeled specifically for use on animals (or use baby-safe products). Ingestion of sunscreen products can result in drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, excessive thirst and lethargy. The misuse of insect repellant that contains DEET can lead to neurological problems.
- Keep citronella candles, insect coils and oil products out of reach. Ingestion can produce stomach irritation and possibly even central nervous system depression. If inhaled, the oils could cause aspiration pneumonia in pets.
- Do not put glow jewelry on your pets, and do not allow them to play with it. While the luminescent substance contained in these products is not highly toxic, excessive drooling and gastrointestinal irritation could still result from ingestion, and intestinal blockage could occur from swallowing large pieces of the plastic containers.
- Keep your pets on their normal diet. Any change, even for one meal, can give your pets severe indigestion and diarrhea. This is particularly true for older animals that have more delicate digestive systems and nutritional requirements. And, keep in mind that foods such as onions, chocolate, coffee, avocado, macadamia nuts, grapes and raisins, salt and yeast dough can all be potentially toxic to companion animals.
We hope all of you have a wonderful and safe holiday this Wednesday, July 4th, 2012!
Approximately 17 million dogs and cats are turned over to animal shelters per year. Only 1 in 10 animals successfully find a home. The suffering and sorrow associated with pet overpopulation is overwhelming. The tragedy is that much of it could be eliminated by simple operations. Spaying and neutering surgeries are performed under general anesthesia and are helpful in many ways. By spaying and neutering pets, people can help lower the numbers of unwanted and homeless dogs and cats. By helping to keep the pet population in check, you increase the chances of adoption for already homeless animals.Spaying your Female Pet
A spay, or ovariohysterectomy, refers to the sterilization of a female pet, and involves the surgical removal of the uterus and both ovaries. This surgery requires your pet to be placed under general anesthesia. The most common reason to perform a spay is to prevent estrus (heat cycles) and unwanted offspring. Other reasons include prevention of mammary tumors or hereditary/congenital defects, prevention and treatment of pyometra (infection of the uterus), neoplasia (cancer of the ovaries, uterus, or vagina), or other disease processes (such as uterine torsion, uterine prolapse, vaginal prolapse, and control of some endocrine abnormalities like diabetes and epilepsy and dermatoses like generalized demodex).Special Information Regarding Mammary Tumors In Dogs & Cats
Approximately 50% of mammary tumors are malignant (cancerous), and approximately 50% are benign (non-cancerous).
Any breed is susceptible, however there is an increased predisposition in Poodles,Cocker Spaniels, Dachshunds, Terriers, and German Shepherd dogs.
The development of mammary tumors in the dog is clearly hormone dependent.
The risk for malignant tumors in dogs spayed prior to the 1st estrus (before their 1st heat cycle) is 0.05%.
The risk for malignant tumors in dogs spayed after the 1st estrus (between their 1st and 2nd heat cycles) is 8%.
HOWEVER, the risk for malignant tumors in dogs spayed after the 2nd estrus (after their 2nd heat cycle) rises to 26%.
Later spaying does NOT reduce the risk for malignant tumors, while the risk for benign tumors seems reduced by ovariectomy even at a later age. Spaying your dog eliminates the risk of uterine and ovarian cancers, as well as eliminates the risk of pyometra (infection of the uterus). THEREFORE, IT IS STRONGLY RECOMMENDED TO SPAY YOUR DOG BEFORE ITS FIRST ESTRUS CYCLE FOR THE MOST HEALTH BENEFITS. SPAYING YOUR PET EARLY IN LIFE HAS PROVEN TO HAVE THE MOST HEALTH BENEFIT IN REDUCING THE RISK FOR MALIGNANT TUMORS.
Approximately 90% of mammary tumors in cats are malignant.
Any breed is susceptible, however there is an increased incidence in Siamese and domestic short-haired cats.
Hormonal influences seem to be involved in the development of mammary tumors in the cat. A study found that cats spayed (ovariectomized) at 6 months of age had an approximately 7-fold REDUCED risk of mammary cancer compared to intact cats. More recent studies have also been able to show that spayed cats have a 40% to 60% lower risk of developing mammary cancer than intact cats.
THEREFORE, IT IS STRONGLY RECOMMENDED TO SPAY YOUR CAT. Neutering Your Male Pet
Neutering should be considered if you are keeping any male dog or cat as a pet. A neuter, or castration, refers to the sterilization of a male pet, and involves the surgical removal of both testicles. This surgery requires your pet to be placed under general anesthesia. Neutering, or castration, reduces overpopulation by inhibiting male fertility and decreases male aggressiveness, roaming, and undesirable urination behavior. It helps prevent prostatic diseases, perianal adenomas, and perineal hernias. Other indications for castration include congenital abnormalities, testicular or epididymal abnormalities, scrotal neoplasia (cancer), trauma or abscesses, hernias, epilepsy control, and control of endocrine abnormalities. Neutering helps to eliminate the risk of testicular cancers and torsion, and helps to decrease the risk of prostatic disease.Preoperative and Postoperative Care
Here at Hope Animal Medical Center, we recommend spaying and neutering your pet at 4 to 6 months of age for the most health and behavior benefits. We will advise you to withhold food and water from your pet the night before surgery is scheduled in order to decrease the risk of nausea and/or vomiting during or after surgery. Preoperatively, we perform pre-anesthetic bloodwork to screen for any pre-existing abnormalities that may cause complications during surgery. If all bloodwork results are normal, then we proceed with surgery. We offer a complimentary overnight stay for all of our spay and neuter patients; however, most of our patients are able to go home the same night after surgery. Postoperatively, the veterinarian and veterinary technician will review instructions and advice that should be followed to ensure a safe and healthy recovery of your pet. Once a pet has fully recovered, you can feel confident that you have helped your companion to live a longer, happier, healthier life while not contributing to the overpopulation of animals.
Please call us at 706-546-7879
if you are interested in having your pet spayed or neutered. During the month of June 2012, we are offering a 20% discount off all our spay and neuter surgeries.
April is Heartworm Awareness Month Heartworms are transmitted to dogs and cats by mosquitoes.
Heartworm disease develops when a dog or cat is bitten by a mosquito carrying microscopic heartworm larvae (juvenile worms) of a parasite called Dirofilaria immitis
. As a mosquito feeds, these larvae are deposited on the pet’s skin and quickly penetrate the skin to begin their migration into the pet’s bloodstream. The larvae migrate through the bloodstream and tissues, eventually reaching the heart and lungs. Adult heartworms can grow 10 to 12 inches in length and make their home in the right side of the heart and pulmonary (lung) arteries, often causing lung disease and heart failure. Heartworm disease is a major health problem for dogs living in the United States
and throughout the temperate and tropical regions of the world. Once thought to be only a disease of dogs and other wild canids (foxes, wolves, and coyotes), recent studies indicate that heartworm infection in cats is more common then ever believed.
Without the protection of a heartworm preventive, your pet couldget heartworm disease – a potentially deadly illness of the heart and lungs. While there is treatment available for dogs that get infected with heartworms, treatment can be expensive, difficult and can lead to serious side effects. However, there is no approved treatment for feline heartworm infection. Therefore, heartworm prevention given to your pet once monthly year-round is strongly advised to protect your pet from contracting this potentially fatal disease. The good news is that heartworm disease is essentially 100% preventable!
Various heartworm preventives are available, including monthly oral and topical formulations. Heartworm preventives are effective when given properly and on a timely schedule. All heartworm preventive medications work by killing heartworm larvae acquired during the previous month and do not continue to protect pets from future infection. This is why it is important to administer heartworm preventives to your pet once every month year-round. All approved heartworm preventives are highly effective, safe, easy to use, relatively inexpensive, and often provide treatment for additional parasites. Please remember, it is your responsibility to faithfully maintain the preventive program you have selected in consultation with your veterinarian. The best way to eliminate the risk of heartworm infection in your pet is to institute a year-round prevention program. Prevention is always more safe and affordable than treating dogs with adult heartworm infections. Clinical signs of heartworm disease in dogs and cats can vary.
Recently infected dogs may show no signs of the disease. Some common signs of heartworm infection in dogs include coughing, difficulty breathing, exercise intolerance, decreased appetite, weight loss and lethargy. Left untreated, heartworm disease may be fatal to your dog as it can cause “caval syndrome”, a sudden obstruction of blood flow through the heart and lungs, or development of heart failure. Signs of heartworm disease in cats range tremendously, from mild and subtle in appearance to severe and life threatening. Symptoms of feline Heartworm Associated Respiratory Disease (HARD) can mimic many common diseases of cats such as hairballs, asthma, or pneumonia
. Signs of disease may include loss of appetite, sluggishness, intermittent vomiting (not associated with eating), coughing, wheezing, and respiratory distress. The presence of just one heartworm may result in permanent damage – or even death – to a cat or kitten. In fact, sudden death may be the first and only sign of heartworm infection in some cats. Detecting heartworm disease in both dogs and cats involve simple blood tests; however, heartworm disease in dogs and cats do have some differences.
Numerous blood tests are available for detecting heartworm infections in dogs, and your veterinarian will perform the test most appropriate for your dog. Tests cannot consistently detect infection until heartworms are at least six to seven months old. Moreover, tests are unable to detect infections if only male worms are present or if there are only one or two female worms. All dogs more than six months of age should be tested for heartworm infection before starting a preventive program. Annual heartworm testing is recommended for monitoring the success of any heartworm prevention program in dogs.
If your dog tests positive for heartworm disease, then your veterinarian will need to perform a thorough physical examination, blood tests (e.g. a CBC and chemistry profile), and radiographs to assess your dog’s level of risk and stage of disease. To reduce complications, your veterinarian will educate you in great detail before beginning treatment. While the heartworm medication melarsomine dihydrochloride (Immiticide) is extremely effective in eliminating adult worms, some dogs will not be completely cleared with a single course of treatment. Testing is recommended six months after treatment to ensure all heartworms were killed. If tests are positive, additional adulticidal treatment may be indicated. For the feline population, two blood tests are currently available to assist in diagnosing heartworms in cats
. Unfortunately, test results do not always produce clear answers, even with professional interpretation. Positive tests indicate heartworms were present, but do not necessarily mean the pet is still infected. Moreover, since tests cannot diagnose very early infection or those infections cause by only one or two worms, negative test results are not always accurate. Even when heartworm disease is highly suspected, confirming a diagnosis through testing in the cat can be difficult. Multiple blood tests along with chest x-rays and ultrasound imaging of the heart and lungs are often needed to make a diagnosis. Since no safe treatment exists for the elimination of heartworms in cats, the best option is the routine use of heartworm preventives to inhibit development of infection. All dogs are at risk for heartworm disease no matter where they live. Cats are at risk wherever dogs are at risk.
The prevalence of heartworm disease has increased steadily since it was first identified. It now affects dogs in all 50 states. Even indoor cats can get heartworm disease. Some people think that indoor cats are safe from heartworm disease, but mosquitoes can get indoors, and cats can get out. Please visit the website of the American Heartworm Society (www.heartwormsociety.org
) for more in-depth information regarding prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of heartworm disease.We strongly recommend heartworm preventives for your pet once monthly year-round. Here at Hope Animal Medical Center, we carry a variety of products that can help you and your pet. Below is a brief explanation of the different products we have available. FOR DOGS:
Heartgard = Ivermectin/Pyrantel pamoate, oral heartworm prevention plus intestinal parasite control (hookworms and roundworms), lasts 1 month
Trifexis = Spinosad/Milbemycin Oxime, oral flea control plus heartworm prevention, intestinal parasite control (hookworms, roundworms, and whipworms), lasts 1 month (DOGS ONLY)
Iverhart Plus = Ivermectin/Pyrantel pamoate, oral heartworm prevention plus intestinal parasite control (hookworms and roundworms), lasts 1 month (DOGS ONLY)
Revolution = Selamectin, topical flea/tick control plus heartworm prevention, lasts 1 month FOR CATS:
Advantage Multi = Imidacloprid/Moxidectin, topical flea control plus heartworm prevention, intestinal parasite control (hookworms and roundworms), and earmite treatment/prevention, lasts 1 month
Revolution = Selamectin, topical flea control plus heartworm prevention, intestinal parasite control (hookworms and roundworms), and earmite treatment/prevention, lasts 1 month.
Heartgard = Ivermectin, oral heartworm prevention plus hookworm intestinal parasite control, lasts 1 month
Spring has sprung!
We all want to wish you a Happy March! With the warmer weather, we officially mark the beginning of flea and tick season. Fleas and ticks are external parasites that affect dogs, cats and humans too. The harmful effects of fleas and ticks can include more than just itchiness and discomfort. In fact, both fleas and ticks can carry serious diseases that are dangerous to both owner and pet. Thankfully, today there are a variety of products available through veterinarians that can help ensure protection from these pesky parasites.Fleas
In addition to itchiness, or pruritus, fleas can cause numerous health problems in our pets. Fleas are small, brown, wingless insects that bite the skin and feed on blood. Because they feed on blood, flea infestations can lead to anemia. When a flea bites a pet, it injects small amounts of saliva into the skin that works to prevent blood clotting and allows it to better siphon blood. Some pets are allergic to the flea saliva, which can cause severe skin reactions, known as flea allergy dermatitis (FAD) or flea bite hypersensitivity. Fleas can also carry tapeworm larvae, which a pet can ingest and become infected with tapeworms and then pass through its feces (often looks like “pieces of rice”). Plus, fleas can carry the organism Bartonella henselae , one of the causes of “cat-scratch disease (CSD)” in humans.Ticks
Ticks are another blood-sucking parasite of the arachnid family related to mites and spiders. Ticks are most commonly found on the ears or in between the toes, but they can be found anywhere on the body. Ticks can be harmful in small or large numbers, as they can transmit serious diseases to both animals and humans. Tick-borne diseases include: Ehrlichia, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, and Lyme disease. Erhlichia can cause anemia, low platelet counts, bleeding, fever, lethargy, neurologic disease and multiple leg arthritis. Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever can cause fever, neurologic disease, breathing difficulty, bleeding disorders and anemia. Lyme disease, caused by the organism Borrelia burgdorferi , is transmitted by the deer tick and can cause multiple leg arthritis, weight loss, lack of appetite, lethargy and fever. Ticks can also cause localized inflammatory lesions of the skin, and occasionally, a syndrome called tick-bite paralysis: weakness or paralysis associated with a toxin the tick secretes as it feeds.Signs of Infestation
Often times pet owners will find fleas or ticks on their pets; however, some pets with flea allergy dermatitis/flea bite hypersensitivity may just be itchy, but no fleas are visible. Finding an adult flea is just the “tip of the iceberg” as the flea has other life-cycle stages that are more numerous and often times too small to see easily. Fleas lay eggs that fall off the pet into the surrounding environment. These eggs hatch into larval-stage fleas then form a pupa before maturing into an adult flea. Other signs of flea infestation are finding pepper-like debris (flea feces) in the pet’s fur, pruritus (itching/scratching/over-grooming), and irritated skin. Flea infestations can lead to secondary skin infections as well. Another indicator of a flea or tick problem is if pet owners find a tick or small bites on themselves.Flea and Tick Preventives
Fortunately, there are a variety of flea and tick preventives available through your veterinarian. These products are safe and effective, and come in either topical or oral formulations. It is crucial that products designed for dogs should never be used for cats and vice-versa. The use of over-the-counter products is not recommended as they can have harsher ingredients and harmful side effects, especially if used incorrectly. Harmful side effects can include: allergic reactions, muscle tremors, seizures, and in severe cases, death for a pet. We have a variety of products here at Hope Animal Medical Center that can help you and your pet. We recommend using flea/tick control products once monthly year-round as insects are a year-round problem here in the south. Below is a brief explanation of the different products available.FOR DOGS:
Capstar = Nitenpyram, oral flea control, kills fleas quickly,lasts 1 day only
Comfortis = Spinosad, oral flea control, lasts 1 month (DOGS ONLY)
Advantage = Imidacloprid, topical flea control, lasts 1 month
K9Advantix = Imidacloprid/Permethrin, topical flea/tick control, lasts 1 month (DOGS ONLY)
Frontline = Fipronil/S-Methoprene, topical flea/tick control, lasts 1 month
Preventic Collar = Amitraz, tick collar, lasts 3 months (DOGSONLY)
Trifexis = Spinosad/Milbemycin Oxime, oral flea control plus heartworm prevention, intestinal parasite control, lasts 1 month (DOGS ONLY)
Sentinel = Lufenuron/Milbemycin Oxime, oral flea sterilizer plus heartworm prevention, intestinal parasite control, lasts 1 month (DOGS ONLY)
Revolution = Selamectin, topical flea/tick control plus heartworm prevention, lasts 1 monthFOR CATS:
Capstar = Nitenpyram, oral flea control, kills fleas quickly,lasts 1 day only
Advantage = Imidacloprid, topical flea control, lasts 1 month
Advantage Multi = Imidacloprid/Moxidectin, topical flea control plus heartworm prevention, intestinal parasite control, and ear mite treatment/prevention, lasts 1 month
Frontline = Fipronil, topical flea/tick control, lasts 1 month
Revolution = Selamectin, topical flea control plus heartworm prevention, intestinal parasite control, and earmite treatment/prevention, lasts 1 month.
Please call for more information or visit our clinic’s website at www.HopeAMC.com
Hope Animal Medical Center Named to the
Bulldog 100: Fastest Growing Bulldog Businesses
Class of 2012
January 24, 2012
Athens, Ga. – Hope Animal Medical Center, based in Athens, was honored on January 21, when the UGA Alumni Association announced the rankings of the 2012 Bulldog 100: Fastest Growing Bulldog Businesses at a celebration in Atlanta.
Hope Animal Medical Center helmed by UGA graduates Dr. Jenifer Hope Gustafson and Dr. Angela Dodd, ranks as this year’s 76th fastest growing Bulldog business. The firm specializes in Veterinary Medicine.
“At Hope Animal Medical Center, we work extremely hard to provide Exceptional Care for Exceptional Pets.” said Gustafson.
The Atlanta CPA firm, Gifford Hillegass and Ingwersen, LLP has annually partnered with the UGA Alumni Association since the inception of the program three years ago to verify the information that was submitted by each nominated company. GH&I then ranked the companies based on compounded annual growth rate.
Nominations were collected between January and June 2011. To be considered for the program, an organization must have been in business for at least five years, had revenues of $100,000 or more for the calendar year 2008, and be owned or operated by a former UGA student who owns at least 50% of company or be the CEO, President or Managing Partner. The program recognizes the fastest-growing businesses regardless of size by focusing on a three-year growth rate average.
Nearly 800 nominations were submitted for this year’s program. The class of 2012 includes companies ranging in all sizes and services, from athletics equipment producers to web design and internet marketing firms. Several different areas of the country are represented, including companies from Connecticut, Nebraska, and New Mexico.
UGA alumni and friends celebrated the 2012 Bulldog 100 honorees at a special event held at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis on January 21, 2012. The evening began with a reception, followed by dinner and the awards ceremony. Keynote speaker, Deborah Norville, anchor of “Inside Edition” and 1979 UGA graduate, led attendees to the highlight of the evening—the release of the final rankings and countdown of the 2012 Bulldog 100.
“The UGA Alumni Association is thrilled to honor our graduates who demonstrate an entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to excellence that bring honor to their alma mater,” said Deborah Dietzler, executive director of the UGA Alumni Association. “We are proud of the accomplishments of these alumni, whose achievements during the Great Recession are noteworthy indeed.”
Nominations for the 2013 Bulldog program will open January 30. The full listing and rankings of the 2012 honorees and photos of the celebration can be found at www.alumni.uga.edu/b100.
With the holidays rapidly approaching, family and friends are making plans to gather together for the festivities. For some pet parents, a trip is no fun if the four-legged members of the family can’t come along. But traveling can be highly stressful, both for you and your animal companions. With thoughtful preparation, you can ensure a safe and comfortable trip for everyone.
Top 10 Tips For Safe Car Travel With Your Pet Planning a road trip? Traveling with a pet involves more than just loading the animal in the back seat and motoring off, especially if you will be driving long distances or plan to be away for a long time. The ASPCA offers the following tips to help you prepare for a safe and smooth car trip:
1. Keep your pets safe and secure in a well-ventilated crate or carrier. There are a variety of wire mesh, hard plastic and soft-sided carriers available. Please make sure to always secure the crate so it won’t slide or shift in the event of a quick stop. Whatever you choose, make sure it’s large enough for your pet to sit, lie down, stand up and turn around in. It is a great idea to get your pet used to the carrier in the comfort of your own home well before your planned trip. There are also specialized seat belt/harness apparatuses available for dogs traveling by car.
2. Get your pet geared up for a long trip by taking him on a series of short drives first, gradually lengthening the time spent in the car. This way you can find out if your pet has any anxiety issues associated with car rides, or any motion sickness. If either of these issues are a problem, please discuss them with your veterinarian.
3. Your pet’s travel-feeding schedule should start with a light meal three to four hours prior to departure. Don’t feed your furry friend in a moving vehicle, even if it is a long drive. If you need to stop for refueling breaks, then you should offer your dog a break as well, by walking him/her on a leash in a safe area, and offering a small amount of water.
4. Never leave your animal alone in a parked vehicle. On a hot day, even with the windows open, a parked automobile can become a furnace in no time, and heatstroke can develop. In cold weather, a car can act as a refrigerator, holding in the cold and causing the animal to freeze to death. Designate someone in your travel party to stay with the animal while others rotate bathroom breaks if needed.
5. What is in your pet’s traveling kit? In addition to travel papers, food, bowls, a leash, a waste scoop, plastic bags, grooming supplies, medication and a pet first-aid kit, pack a favorite toy or pillow to give your pet a sense of familiarity and comfort.
6. Make sure your pet has a microchip for identification and wears a collar with a tag imprinted with your home address/phone number, as well as a temporary travel tag with your cell phone, destination phone number and any other relevant contact information. Canines should wear flat collars (never choke collars), please.
7. Don’t allow your pet to ride with his/her head outside of the window. This can subject your pet to inner ear damage and lung infections, and he/she could be injured by flying objects. Please keep him/her in the back seat in his/her crate, or with a harness attached to a seat buckle as previously described.
8. Traveling across state lines? Bring along your pet’s rabies vaccination record, as some states require this proof at certain interstate crossings. While this generally isn’t a problem, it is better to be prepared ahead of time should you have to show proof, or if your pet has an unfriendly encounter.
9. When it come to water, we say BYOB. Opt for bottled water or tap water stored in plastic jugs or water bottles. Drinking water from an area that your pet is not used to could result in GI upset for your pet (e.g. vomiting or diarrhea).
10. If you travel frequently with your pet, you may want to invest in rubberized floor liners and waterproof seat covers, available at auto product retailers.
Top 10 Tips For Safe Air Travel With Your Pet Planning a flight? The ASPCA urges pet owners to think twice about flying their pets on commercial airlines, especially if they plan on checking them in as cargo. Unless your pet is small enough to fit under your seat in a carrier and you can bring him/her in the cabin, the ASPCA recommends pet owners to not fly their animal. If pet owners have already committed to transporting their pets on commercial airlines, the ASPCA is offering the following top ten tips for safe air travel with your pet:
1. Make an appointment with your pet’s veterinarian for an examination, and make sure all vaccinations are current. Obtain a health certificate from your veterinarian dated within 10 days of departure. For travel outside of the continental United States, additional planning and health care requirements are often necessary. Contact the foreign office of the country you are traveling to and the USDA for more information.
2. Make sure your pet has a microchip for identification and is wearing a collar and ID tag with your phone numbers. The collar should also include destination information in case your pet escapes. Flat collars are best for dogs (no choke collars, please). Breakaway collars are best for cats.
3. Book a direct flight whenever possible. This will decrease the chances that your pet is left on the tarmac during extreme weather conditions or mishandled by baggage personnel.
4. Purchase a USDA-approved shipping crate that is large enough for your pet to sit, stand up, and turn around in comfortably. Shipping crates can be purchased from many pet supply stores and airlines.
5. Write the words “Live Animal” in letters at least one inch tall on top of and on at least one side of the crate. Use arrows to prominently indicate the upright position of the crate. On the top of the crate, write the name, address and telephone number of your pet’s destination point. Also, indicate whether you will be accompanying your pet or if someone else is picking him/her up. Make sure that the door is securely closed, but not locked, so that airline personnel can open it in case of an emergency. Line the bottom of the crate with some type of bedding – shredded paper, newspaper, or towels – to absorb any accidents.
6. Affix a current photograph of your pet to the top of the crate for identification purposes. Should your pet escape from the carrier, this could be a lifesaver. You should also carry a photograph of your pet.
7. The night before your flight/trip, make sure you’ve frozen a small dish or tray of water for your pet. This way, it cannot spill during loading, and will melt by the time your pet is thirsty. Tape a small pouch, preferably cloth, of dried food outside the crate. Airline personnel will be able to feed your pet in case he gets hungry on long-distance flights or a layover.
8. Tranquilizing your pet is not usually recommended, as it could hamper his breathing and delay his reflexes in case of an emergency. Always check with your veterinarian if you have any questions or concerns.
9. Tell every airline employee you encounter, on the ground and in the air, that you are traveling with a pet in the cargo hold. This way, they’ll be ready if any additional considerations or attention is needed.
10. If the plane is delayed, or if you have any concerns about the welfare of your pet, insist that airline personnel check the animal whenever feasible. In certain situations, removing the animal from the cargo hold and deplaning may be warranted.
If you are planning on traveling with your pet, and need to schedule an appointment for an examination, or to discuss any concerns you may have about traveling, please call us at 706-546-7879. Our friendly staff would be happy to assist you, as we all wish you a safe and happy holiday season.
If you are planning to travel, but need to find accommodations for your pet, we offer boarding here in a temperature-controlled, secure and well-staffed facility. Please let us know how we can help you. We greatly appreciate you and love all of your pets as if they were our own.
What is Diabetes?
Diabetes Mellitus (DM) is a chronic condition in which a deficiency of the hormone Insulin impairs the body’s ability to metabolize sugar. It is one of the most common endocrine (hormonal) diseases of cats and dogs. There are two types of diabetes mellitus: Type I DM occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin; therefore insulin injections are required to control the disease. Dogs nearly always (99%) have the type I variety while approximately 50 to 70% of cats are diagnosed. Type II DM occurs when the pancreas produces enough insulin but something interferes with its ability to be utilized by the body. Type II DM is less common and is identified in approximately 30% of cats. It is treated with dietary management, weight control, and oral drugs.
Diabetes mellitus usually affects middle-aged to older cats and dogs. It is most common in female dogs and neutered male cats. Juvenile-onset diabetes may occur in cats and dogs less than 1 year of age. Any breed of cat or dog can be affected. Dog breeds at increased risk include: Australian terriers, Samoyeds, Schnauzers (miniature and standard), Bichon frises, Cairn terriers, Keeshonds, Spitzes, Fox terriers, and Poodles (miniature and standard). Risk factors for diabetes mellitus include: obesity, recurring or previous pancreatitis, Cushing’s disease, and drugs such as glucocorticoids and progestagens that antagonize insulin.
In order to understand the problems involved in diabetes mellitus it is necessary to understand something of the normal body’s metabolism. The cells of the body require sugar (glucose) as food and they depend on the bloodstream to bring glucose to them. They cannot, however, absorb and utilize glucose unless a hormone, Insulin, is present. Insulin is produced by the pancreas.
Glucose comes from the diet. When an animal goes without food, the body must break down fat, stored starches, and protein to supply calories for the hungry cells. Proteins and starches may be converted into glucose. Fat, however, requires different processing which can lead to the production of ketones rather than glucose. Ketones may be detected in the urine of starving animals as massive fat mobilization is required for ketone formation.
In the diabetic animal, there isn’t enough insulin. The cells cannot receive glucose from the blood because there is no insulin to permit it to be absorbed and utilized. The body is unable to detect the glucose present in the blood and is fooled into thinking starvation is occurring. Protein, starch, and fat breakdown occur as in starvation. Yet, all along there has been plenty of glucose in the blood; in fact, by now, there is a large excess of glucose in the blood as all resources have been mobilized. The normal kidney is able to prevent glucose loss in urine. In the diabetic animal, there is so much glucose in the blood that the kidney is overwhelmed and glucose spills into the urine and is lost. In severe cases, ketones are also found in the urine, a more complicated diabetic emergency, known as Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA). Glucose is able to draw water with it into the urine. This leads to excess urine production and excess thirst to keep up with the fluid loss in excess urine production. Clinical Signs/What to Watch For:
- Increased thirst/Excessive drinking
- Increased frequency and/or amount of urination
- Weight loss despite a good appetite
- Poor body condition/poor haircoat
- Weakness in cats – especially in rear legs
- Sudden blindness due to cataract formation in dogs
*Note: In dogs, sugars can enter the lens of the eye causing rapid cataract formation. Because cats’ lenses are different, this phenomenon only occurs in dogs.
*Another common issue with diabetes mellitus is urinary tract infection. All the sugar in the urine makes the bladder an excellent incubator for bacteria. Antibiotics are often necessary to clear up any infections and some future monitoring is advised to help detect them.
Veterinary care should include diagnostic tests to determine the underlying cause of any clinical signs you are seeing in your pet. Your veterinarian will ask questions about your pet’s medical history and perform a thorough physical exam. Routine bloodwork can help screen for any metabolic disease, and also help diagnose diabetes. A CBC (complete blood count) and Chemistry panel (serum biochemical analysis) can determine the blood glucose concentration and exclude other potential causes of the same symptoms. A urinalysis is also done to check for glucose and any evidence of a urinary tract infection. Other diagnostic tests, such as abdominal radiographs (x-rays) or abdominal ultrasound (US) may be done if complications or concurrent diseases, like pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas), are suspected. Treatment
Most dogs and cats will require twice daily injections of insulin to control their blood glucose. These injections are given under the skin using a small needle. Most dogs and cats become readily accustomed to the treatments. Your veterinarian’s office will train you thoroughly in the proper use of insulin and subcutaneous injection techniques. Proper weight management, and regular exercise, in combination with therapeutic diets can aid in the control of diabetes. Ovariohysterectomy (spaying) is indicated in female diabetic animals to reduce the effects of estrogen on diabetes and insulin.
Complications such as urinary tract infections may require additional medications, but certain drugs (e.g. steroids like prednisone) should be avoided in diabetic patients. Prepare for frequent adjustments to therapy early in the course of treatment. Veterinarians prefer to start with a low dose of insulin initially and adjust upwards slowly to avoid overdosing. Your veterinarian may recommend hospitalization to measure the blood glucose every few hours (this is known as a glucose curve). Insulin overdose may cause low blood glucose (hypoglycemia), potentially resulting in disorientation, weakness, or seizures (convulsions, tremors). If you notice any of these symptoms in an otherwise responsive cat or dog, offer food immediately. If the cat or dog is unconscious, Karo syrup can be applied to the gums. In either case, call your veterinarian as soon as possible.
While there is no way known to prevent type I diabetes mellitus, proper weight management can reduce the likelihood of your dog or cat developing type II diabetes (which is the most common).
Please call us at 706-546-7879
if you are interested in having your pet screened for diabetes. You can also visit our website at www.hopeamc.com
for more information. We here at Hope Animal Medical Center hope you have a very Happy Thanksgiving!