It’s spring! That means it is time for those creepy-crawly pests to be out and about, seeking a nice warm blood meal from your pet (or you!). Our most common tick, the Rocky Mountain Wood Tick (Dermacentor andersoni) is out among the grasses and shrubs, just waiting for a warm body to brush by.
Besides being creepy, these ticks can transmit some diseases to our furry friends, although it is rare in our area. Females can also cause “Tick Paralysis” which can be very dangerous for your pet. So, we recommend applying a tick preventative during the warm months of the year. We have found Frontline Plus to be safe and work well for these ticks, so it is the product we currently carry for our patients.
You can also minimize the number of ticks your pet accumulates by checking them thoroughly after they have been in tick-infested areas. Concentrate on areas around the neck and ears, but they can be anywhere.
If you want to remove a tick yourself, do not attempt to kill the tick with anything hot–it is unnecessary and dangerous! Just firmly grasp (don’t squeeze or crush) the tick as close to the attachment point as possible, then gently pull the tick out backwards. Don’t hesitate to drop in if you have an embedded tick that needs to removed–we can pull it out for you. You should also check yourself if you were also out!
It’s spring, which means the black flies are out and about in the Spokane area! These pesky flies take a blood meal by using their mouth parts to cut a hole in the skin, then add a little anticoagulant saliva to keep the wound from clotting until they are done feeding. Fresh black fly bites will often continue bleeding for a little while after the fly is finished and you will find either fresh blood or crusted blood over a bite. The bite will then show a central blood-spot, resembling a small blood blister. Many people and pets have reactions to the saliva from the flies. The bites will often swell and become very itchy.
In pets, the flies tend to like the areas around the abdomen (belly), where the hair is thinner. They seem to really like the areas right where the hair starts to thin out. In people, they tend to concentrate at the nape of the neck, along your hairline. Otherwise, they also bite along the edges of clothing (like where your socks end at the ankle–they will crawl up your pants to get there!).
Black flies are small flies (have a humped-back appearance and are about 1/4-1/2 the size of the house fly) that tend to be the most active in the mornings, around dusk, or when it’s humid (often before/after rain). They are not known to transmit diseases in the Spokane area, but the bites can get infected, so be sure to clean them after being bitten. Monitor the area closely until it heals.
As with any insect bite or sting, if there is any indication of an allergic reaction or infection, bring your pet in to be examined by one of our veterinarians as soon as possible. Any breathing difficulties or generalized swelling should be considered an emergency and should be seen immediately!
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This young Cape Parrot was brought in by a young man that coaxed him out of a tree. The poor bird was lethargic, hypothermic and underweight. Our weather is definitely not what he needed!
Dr. Wada and the staff were able to get him warmed up, comfortable, and eating. He was quite the character when he felt better!
Then we went on the search for his home. Unfortunately, he did not have a band or a microchip. We searched all the shelter lost-pet listings, Craigslist, and the newspaper lost & found. Dr. Wada even searched the neighborhood where he was found, looking for posters.
On the third day, due to some diligent footwork, Dr. Wada finally tracked down the owner, who was just starting to post posters at a pet store. Whew! Great job, Dr. Wada! Johnnie appreciated all your efforts to find his home!
Well, Tigger must have heard all the campaigns for FAST (recognizing stroke symptoms)!
Tigger, a large orange tabby, is not normally a really affectionate cat. But in the middle of the night last September, he woke up his “mom” by rubbing her and pushing her, which is completely out of character for him. This also woke up “dad” who saw that his wife had all the signs of a stroke (one side of the face drooping, her arm, and inability to speak). He immediately called 911 and the paramedics were able to get her to the hospital right away, which is the key to successful stroke treatment.
Today, Tigger’s mom is doing wonderfully. Thanks, Tigger, you did a great job!
We have been transitioning to a new store and pet health page this month! We believe you will find these both much more user-friendly than our old store and Pet Portal page.
Petly is your pet’s new personalized health page. You can request appointments & prescription refills, view your pet’s vaccine status, find pet health information, confirm appointments, update your contact information & more! If you didn’t receive a Petly invitation at the beginning of February, be sure to request one!
Our new home delivery pharmacy is very easy to use, convenient, and priced very competitively! You will still be purchasing these items through SouthCare, so all manufacture support will still apply and you will have a known, reliable source for those medications. Our pharmacy also offers optional service such as “Remind Me” and automatic shipments. Most pharmaceuticals and prescription pet diets can be purchased through our store!
The holidays are a festive time of year. There are several surprising pet hazards this time of year it is a good time to review them. Here is Dr. Benoit’s guide to navigating the holidays safely with your pet..
Beware the Turkey….and gravy…etc.
The holiday season is upon us with all its festivity and rich food. Beware of the hidden hazards to your furry friends. Isn’t it tempting to share that turkey leg with your brown eyed hound? (Be prepared for frequent “bathroom” trips the next day!) If your pets system is not adapted to the rich diet of turkey, gravy, yams, etc… please don’t shock their system. This could cost you a trip to SouthCare AMC!
Please resist the temptation to feed your pet holiday leftovers. These foods tend to be higher in fat, and high fat meals have been implicated as a cause of acute pancreatitis in dogs and cats. Pancreatitis is a potentially fatal inflammatory disease of the pancreas, the organ responsible for producing digestive enzymes and insulin, which is a critical hormone needed to control glucose levels in your pet’s blood.
Chocolate contains a substance called theobromine that is toxic to dogs and cats. This substance is found in all chocolate, unsweetened baking chocolate contains this highest concentration of this substance, and only a small amount of this can cause clinical signs in your pet. Signs range from vomiting and diarrhea to excitability and agitation, and in extreme overdoses, even death.
Ornaments and tinsel
These items are particularly attractive to our feline friends. Ornaments look like a new play toy to our cats, and these can be ingested leading to gastrointestinal upset and potentially obstruction. Every year many cats require surgery because the tinsel they have ingested has become entangled under their tongue, or caused their intestine to become obstructed.
These holiday items are attractive to cats, but can be even more attractive to younger puppies. Electrical burn to the mouth and tongue with the potential of rapid fluid buildup in the lungs may result if your pet chews through the insulation of electrical cords.
The toxicity of poinsettias is often exaggerated, but ingestion of this plant may be irritating to the mouth, stomach and intestine.
There are several varieties of mistletoe and the American variety tends to be less toxic than the European variety. Ingesting small amounts may lead to mild vomiting and diarrhea whereas ingestion of larger quantities may lead to decreased blood pressure, collapse, and seizures.
Lilies and Holly
Most lilies, including day lilies, stargazer lilies, tiger lilies, Easter lilies are toxic to cats, resulting in kidney failure, and ultimately death. Holly, particularly the berries can also be very toxic, resulting commonly in vomiting and diarrhea, with death possible.
Raisins and grapes
Though the actual toxic component is still unknown, it is clear that raisins and grapes contain a component that can be toxic to the kidneys in dogs. Just two ounces of raisins can cause kidney failure!
Keep safe and enjoy the season!
we will be collecting non-perishable food donations for 2nd Harvest to help the hungry families in Spokane.
Help us collect food donations by bringing in a donation of 2 (or more!) items for food bank donation. To thank you for your generous donation, we will give your dog or cat a FREE NAIL TRIM!
Please call us for a nail trim appointment: 448-4480