February is National Responsible Pet Owners Month. Pets are a joy to own, but they are also a commitment. Dogs and cats can live 10-20 years, and some pets such as birds can live even longer. They depend upon us fully to care for them, but in return they give us unconditional love. So what are some ways to be a responsible pet owner? Spay or neuter your pet. Unfortunately in the U.S., there is an overpopulation of companion animals, with many dogs, cats, rabbits, ferrets, and other pets living in shelters and rescues. Spaying and neutering helps prevent further overpopulation, and has some health benefits as well. Get pets from reputable sources. On a similar note, when looking to add to your family, consider rescues and shelters. There are many pure bred rescues if you want a pure bred, and mixed breed animals often have the benefit of fewer health issues. Go to the vet annually. While your pet may not require yearly vaccinations, the physical examination is the most important part of your visit. Pets are very good at hiding pain and problems, and going to the vet regularly may help catch issues earlier, when they are easier to prevent or treat. Microchip or otherwise identify your pet. Tags with phone […]Read Post
Since pets aren’t able to speak, it can be difficult to determine if they are in pain. Pets tend to be extremely stoic, and may eat despite rotting teeth, may walk despite broken bones, and may wag their tail despite having just had surgery. So how do you tell if something is amiss? Some pets will vocalize when in pain, whether a whine, whimper, howl, or growl. However, not all pets will, so this is not always a good indicator. Sometimes there are physical signs of pain that are visible-limping, trembling, dilated pupils (unless the eye is what is painful, then may see squinting, and dilated or constricted pupils), increased heart rate and increased respiratory rate, changes in gait, posture, tail and/or ear position, mobility, or even changes in the way they sit or lay (leg cocked out, prayer position, curled up or stretched out differently). Overgrooming an area or barbering the hair can indicate pain, as can a complete lack of grooming. Changes in eating, drinking, urination, defecation, and sleep habits may all indicate pain also. More often, pets will have subtle changes in their personality. They may act more anxious-whining, pacing, licking, panting, seeming unable to get comfortable/or unable to relax. They may also be agitated, and may even become aggressive. […]Read Post
Chances are, you have heard of antibiotics. And in this day and age, you may have heard of a phenomenon called antibiotic resistance. Then there are things called prebiotics and probiotics. What are all of these, and what are they used for? Antibiotics are medications that work against bacteria/bacterial infections. They work by killing bacteria or stopping the bacteria’s ability to reproduce. They do not work against parasites, fungal infections, viral infections, or autoimmune diseases in most cases. The type of antibiotic, the frequency and dose, and the length of treatment are all determined by the type and location of infection, the pet’s overall health, and any other medical conditions that may be present. An important aspect of using antibiotics is to try to prevent antibiotic resistance. Resistance is when a particular bacteria develops a way to not be killed off by a particular antibiotic. It is important to finish the entire course of antibiotics as prescribed, because if you stop early, you may have only killed 90% of the bacteria present, and the remaining 10% may have been better able to resist the antibiotic. This can lead to the same infection no longer responding to the same antibiotic in the future, which can mean we no longer have a way to treat […]Read Post
Heritage Animal Hospital is a full-service veterinarian clinic that provides examinations, diagnostic services, dental care, surgical services, medicine, grooming and boarding services in Maple Grove, Minnesota. We are dedicated to providing the highest level of pet care possible and facilitating an environment where client communication and education are at the forefront of our practice.
12624 Base Lake Road
Maple Grove, MN 55369
Mon-Fri: 7:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Sat: 7:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.