Welcome to Ask The Vet
Where you will find the answers to the Most Frequently Asked Questions.
Most Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What Is Lyme Disease?
A: Lime disease is caused by a bacteria, Borrelia burgdorferi. It is a disease that can attack many systems in your pet’s body.
Q: How Did My Dog Catch Lyme?
A: Your dog was almost certainly bitten some time ago by a tick that carried Lyme organisms. We call these particular ticks deer ticks – but they feeds on many other types of animals. It is a small tick and it can be easily overlooked. At a previous stage in its life, that tick sucked blood from a deer mouse. These have nothing to do with deer. They are the cute little mice you see that can zip up trees. That mouse was itself carrying Borrelia and passed it on to the tick. When that tick later fed on your pet, it passed the Borrelia on to your dog. We think it takes a day or two on your dog for the tick to inject its Borrelia cargo as it sucks blood.
Q: What Are The Symptoms Of Lyme Disease In My Dog?
A: The majority of dogs that are infected with Lyme disease show no symptoms at all. Most of these dogs are identified through routine yearly testing at veterinary hospitals. We do not know why some dogs are affected with symptoms and others are not. However, a small portion of infected dogs do develop sore, painful joints weeks or months after infection. Some of these dogs run low-grade fevers. The signs you read about in humans with Lyme almost never occur in pets.
Q: How Is Lyme Disease Treated?
A: Treatment of early Lyme disease is straightforward. The American College Of Veterinary Internal Medicine recommends a 30-day treatment with doxycycline. If kidney function tests were abnormal they suggest the pet stay on the medication longer and that it receive a diet formulated to minimize kidney problems.
Source:Ron Hines DVM PhD
H1N1 Flu Virus
H1N1 FLU VIRUS and YOUR PETS
Please see these sources for informative information.
American Veterinary Medical Association
Q: Is it SAFE for my dog to eat CHOCOLATE?
A: No. In some dogs it my cause them to become very Hyperactive or even Agitated. It can also cause Vomiting and Diarrhea, which can lead to Dehydration. In more serious cases it can cause Seizures and even Death.
Toxic Lawn & Garden
Q: Is Cocoa Shell safe to use as a mulch around my pets?
A: Cocoa Shell contains Theobromine, which is the toxin in chocolate and can be fatal for some dogs. It is marketed to help keep cats out of your garden.
Q: How often do I need to get a rabies shot?
A: The first vaccination should be given at 14 - 16 weeks of age. The next vaccination should be 1yr. from the first vaccination. Here you can go with the 1yr. or 3yr. depending on the laws in your state.
Q: What is rabies?
A: Rabies is a deadly disease caused by a virus that attacks the nervous system. The virus is secreted in saliva and is usually transmitted to people and animals by a bite from an infected animal. Less commonly, rabies can be transmitted when saliva from a rabid animal comes in contact with an open cut on the skin or the eyes, nose, or mouth of a person or animal. Once the outward signs of the disease appear, rabies is nearly always fatal.
Q: What animals can get rabies?
A: Only mammals can get rabies; birds, fish, reptiles and amphibians do not. Most cases of rabies occur in wild animals—mainly skunks, raccoons, bats, coyotes, and foxes. In recent years, cats have become the most common domestic animal infected with rabies. This is because many cat owners do not vaccinate their cats before the cats are exposed to rabid wildlife outdoors. Rabies also occurs in dogs and cattle in significant numbers and, while not as common, has been diagnosed in horses, goats, sheep, swine and ferrets.
Q: What are the signs of rabies in animals?
A: Once the rabies virus enters the body, it travels along the nerves to the brain. Dogs, cats, and ferrets with rabies may show a variety of signs, including fearfulness, aggression, excessive drooling, difficulty swallowing, staggering, and seizures. Rabid wild animals may only display unusual behavior; for example, an animal that is usually only seen at night may be seen wandering in the daytime. In addition to those signs seen in dogs and cats, horses, cattle, sheep, and goats with rabies may exhibit depression, self mutilation, or increased sensitivity to light.
Q: How great is the risk of rabies to humans?
A: Rabies vaccination and animal control programs, along with better treatment for people who have been bitten, have dramatically reduced the number of human cases of rabies in the United States. Most of the relatively few, recent human cases in this country have resulted from exposures to bats. A few rabies cases have resulted from corneal or organ/tissue transplants from an infected donor, but these have been extremely rare. Dogs are still a significant source of rabies in other countries, so travelers should be aware of this risk when traveling outside of the United States.
Source: American Veterinary Medical Association
Q: Why should I Microchip my pets?
Q: What are the advantages to spaying my pet?
A: There will be no more heat periods, or unwanted pregnancies. The uterine infections common to older dogs rarely occur. There is less chance of mammary gland cancer.
Q: If I spay my pet will it make them fat and lazy?
A: Not at all. Obesity is due to excessive calorie intake. Weight can be controlled by proper feeding and exercise.
Q: If I spay my pet will it change her personality, disposition, or intelligence?
A: Dog's personalities do not fully develop until 1-2 years of age. If there is a personality change after spaying at an early age, it would have occurred without surgery.
Q: Shouldn't I allow my dog to have a litter first?
A: Not really. There is no advantage in allowing your female to have a litter before spaying.
Q: Are there any problems associated with saying?
A: A very small percentage of dogs have trouble holding their urine as they become older. This is normally controllable with medication.
Q: How do dogs get heart worms?
A: From infected mosquitoes. Mosquitoes get them from biting another animal that has heart worms.
Over the Counter Medication
Q: Can I give my pets Tylenol?
A: No it can cause ulcers in dogs. And be fatal to cats. Always talk to your Veterinarian before using any medicine on your pets.
Q: Is it o.k to give a dog Baby Aspirin (Aspirin) when it has a minor injury and pain is associated with it. Or your dog seems to have a slight temperature.
A: The recommended aspirin dosage for dogs is 5 mg to 10 mg per pound of your dog's weight, administered once during a 12-hour period. An adult aspirin is 320 mg; a baby aspirin is 80 mg. The lowest dosage will likely provide adequate relief. If not, your vet may instruct you to gradually increase the dosage. Aspirin can be toxic if given in high doses of about 30 mg per pound. For example, a baby aspirin could poison a dog weighing 2 pounds or less, and an adult aspirin could poison a dog weighing about 10 pounds. Do not administer coated aspirin, for your dog cannot digest it and excretes it in the stools. Puppies cannot tolerate aspirin in any quantity, because their bodies lack enzymes that break it down. Never give aspirin to puppies.