Did your vet recommend removing your dog’s or cat’s eyeball?

Enucleation. (Pronounced ee-NEW-clee-AY-shen). It’s a much nicer sounding word than “eyeball removal.” But that’s what it is. If you’ve been battling a major eye disease for a while, and the eye is not responding, your veterinarian might have recommended it. We typically recommend removing the eye when it is no longer able to see (so […]

Green gunk in your dog’s eye – let’s talk about “Dry Eye,” or KCS

The condition known as “dry eye” can be incredibly frustrating for pet owners and veterinarians. It is the rebel disease that responds to treatment sometimes, not others, for no apparent reason. The symptoms don’t really make sense. The whole package is odd. So, time to explain it! The medical term for dry eye is KCS […]

Sunscreen for dogs after surgery – or for any exposed skin

Dogs don’t need sunscreen, do they? Most of the time they do not. Their fur shields their skin very well. However, there are situations where dogs can become severely burned if we are not vigilant, and we actually need to put sunscreen on our dogs. The first possibility that came to your mind is probably […]

Rescuing dogs from puppy mills – how NOT to do it!

I first became involved in rescuing dogs from puppy mills about 20 years ago. I made friends who had made friends with these breeders. When they had an older dog who wasn’t producing enough puppies to be profitable, it also wasn’t worth the price of food, or the price of a bullet. These puppy mills/breeders […]

3 diseases that owners can diagnose better than the vet

That’s right. Your vet might be good, but there are some diseases that she cannot diagnose as well as you, the pet owner, can. So know these, watch for signs, and tell your vet if you see them. While she doesn’t have specific diagnostic tests for these conditions, she can certainly offer treatment or adaptations […]

What do dogs and cats actually see?

We all have heard that dogs are color-blind. Is it true? Not exactly. Kinda like the myth that one human year is equivalent to 7 “dog years”. Again, not exactly. So how well can dogs and cats see? In some ways, their vision is better than ours, and in others, it’s worse. Let’s start with […]

Extreme Heartworm-ing: Frida’s survival story

Yes, we all know we don’t want our dogs to get heartworm. If you have a good vet, she probably tells you to keep your dog on heartworm preventative every month. You get your dog tested for heartworm every year, it’s always negative, and it’s easy to get lackadaisical. Heartworms. Big whoop. This week I […]

The 10 biggest lies even seasoned pet owners believe

As a practicing veterinarian, I interact with a wide variety of people, from first-time pet owners to the seasoned pros who have owned pets their whole lives. I have noticed some common misconceptions that even the experienced pet owners believe. So, time to end the confusion and lay out the facts! 1 – Cats and […]

Why this vet hates new puppy visits (AKA, how to stop puppy mills)

Many people think veterinarians have the dream job. Snuggling adorable puppies and kittens  – what’s not to love? Fortunately, the public is beginning to understand that our job is actually quite grueling, with life-and-death decisions being made on a daily basis. So with a stressful job, the new puppy appointment on the schedule should be a […]

Diarrhea in dogs and cats- when to worry

Everyone with a dog or cat has dealt with it at one point. It’s never pretty. It’s diarrhea. Of course, I could write pages and pages on this topic. Our focus here: when do you start to worry? There are many variables at play. The diarrhea could be a nuisance that clears up easily with medication (or on […]

Dogs with bloody diarrhea that looks like raspberry jelly – HGE

Here’s one disease that really freaks dog owners out. It can be mild, but some severe cases can be life-threatening, so it’s good to know what’s going on. We’re talking about a syndrome called HGE: Hemorrhagic GastroEnteritis. Hemorrhagic means a big bloody mess. Gastro-Enteritis literally translates to inflammation of the stomach and intestines.  The primary […]

Want to avoid hip dysplasia? Avoid vitamin supplements!

As busy humans eating less-than-ideal diets much of the time, it has been widely recommended we take a multi-vitamin daily to fill in the gaps in nutrition left by our questionable diets. Many people extrapolate that to their dogs needing a vitamin or mineral supplement as well. In puppies, particularly, this can actually cause harm! […]

Why is my dog losing hair on his sides?

Here’s another benign skin problem that can really freak an owner out. Recurrent flank alopecia, also called seasonal or cyclic flank alopecia, is exactly what it sounds. Let’s break it down: Recurrent/cyclic – it comes and goes…..and comes back Flank – the sides of the dog’s belly, behind the ribs Alopecia – fancy word for […]

Bringing your pet home after hospitalization – what to expect

If your dog or cat was seriously ill, or underwent a major medical procedure, he may have spent several days in the veterinary hospital or ICU. When you bring him home, you are excited to have your buddy back! There is some adjusting that needs to happen though. Knowing what to expect will let you […]

Be prepared if disaster strikes – Three simple things to do now!

We’ve all seen the heart-breaking images from Hurricane Harvey. I can’t even wrap my head around what these people must be feeling…and how long it will be before life returns to anything close to normal. Thankfully, people are coming together to help people and pets. Animal shelters across the country are taking in animals who […]

My dog/cat has a heart murmur – now what?

When you bring your pet to the veterinarian, you want everything to go well, your pet to be happy, and your vet to find nothing abnormal on physical exam. So when the veterinarian tells you that your dog or cat has a heart murmur, it can be a bit of a shock. Often these animals […]

Hypothyroid dogs – cold, bald, and fat

Hypothyroidism, or having a low or under-performing thyroid gland, seems to be the one disease pet owners wish for. I can’t tell you haw many overweight/obese dogs I see that the owners want me to test them for low thyroid. It can’t be that he’s fed too much, or never exercises. No, we want to […]

Pheromones? Really?

There’s always something new coming out that is the next great thing to make your pet’s life better. Myths get perpetuated on social media like gospel truth. What’s real and what’s just hype? Pheromones sure sound sketchy. What are they? A pheromone is a chemical secreted by the body that is emitted and detected by […]

Are you TRULY prepared to leave your pet while you travel? The thing every pet owner forgets.

Vacation time is upon us! We all think we have our act together when it comes to our pets, but the majority of pet owners forget one very important detail. This article might be a little of a downer, but the goal is to help you help your pet! We all know the rules. Whether […]

Soft tissue sarcomas, AKA spindle cell tumors – why they just kinda suck

Let’s talk tumors, growths, lumps, cancer, whatever you want to call it. And why certain ones suck, but do not suck as bad as others. There are two broad categories of tumor, based on the cell type from which they originate. Round cell tumors are your lymphomas, mast cells, other tumors whose cells look, well, […]