Managing Osteoarthritis

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Interview with Dr. Danielle DugatDugat - Professional Photo 

Interview with Dr. Lara SypniewskiSypniewski Lara

Painful osteoarthritis can develop in our pets, much like it does in people. When the cartilage inside the joint becomes damaged due to some kind of trauma, the ongoing destructive process of arthritis begins.

You and your veterinarian can do many things to help slow the progression of arthritis. Weight management is critical to reduce stress on the affected joint.

Exercise modification to minimize impact, like swimming, is helpful. Dietary supplements such as omega-3 fatty acids, glucosamine and chondroitin, given over time can help promote cartilage health. Adequan© injections and anti-inflammatory medications can help quiet the ravages of inflammation.

As arthritis progresses, surgery may be necessary to end the pain. The Center for Veterinary Health Sciences diagnoses and treats a myriad of diseases associated with arthritis, including hip dysplasia, trauma to the joint, elbow dysplasia, anterior cruciate ligament tears in the knee, and medial patellar or kneecap luxation, among others.

No matter the cause of the arthritis, a tailored management plan can be developed to help minimize pain and maximize the quality of life for your pet.

Annual wellness exam

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Canine wellness

Feline wellness

Interviews with Dr. Lara SypniewskiSypniewski Lara

Just like us, our animals need routine medical care that changes over the course of their lives.

Before bringing home a new pet, your veterinarian can give you great advice on subjects like behavior, diet, and spaying or neutering. Routine examination, including the mouth, can detect problems and address disease early.

Puppies and kittens need a series of vaccinations to build their immunity to diseases like parvo and distemper for dogs, and panleukopenia and respiratory viruses in cats. Vaccinating our pets against rabies not only protects the pet from the deadly disease but also protects us and our community by helping to limit the spread of rabies.

The strategic prevention of fleas, ticks, heart worms, and intestinal parasites keeps our pets, and us, clean of the multitude of diseases they cause.

As our pets age, they can develop geriatric problems, such as trouble with their kidneys, liver and hormone systems. Early indicators of problems can be seen in routine blood work, long before the disease becomes visible externally.

During an annual wellness visit, your veterinarian can help you tailor your pet’s care to fit its life stage.

Intensive care unit

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Interview with Dr. Danielle DugatDugat - Professional Photo

The Center for Veterinary Health Sciences offers a 24-hour intensive care unit, or ICU, that provides high quality patient care for those who need close, intensive monitoring and care around the clock.

The ICU is maximally equipped with all of the tools needed to manage a critical patient, from uncontrolled diabetes to post-surgical management of patients who have been hit by a car. No matter the critical need, the ICU staff and doctors are available to provide the care and pain management to best help the patient recover.

Advanced equipment in the ICU includes heart monitoring, oxygen cages, chest tube drainage systems, and ventilator therapy. The ICU is divided to allow cats their own quiet room away from the presence of dogs, and big dogs with comfortable suites that have all the necessary equipment built in.

Referring veterinarians and pet owners can rest well knowing that optimal care is being given around the clock to our most critical patients.

Canine orthotics

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Interview with Dr. Danielle DugatDugat - Professional Photo

With increased awareness of the importance of rehabilitation and the physical therapy in dogs with orthopedic problems, there has been an increase in the use of orthotics in dogs.

Canine orthotics are custom-made splints and braces that are utilized for a variety of orthopedic and neurologic conditions in dogs. The Center for Veterinary Health Sciences’ small animal surgery service, can create custom orthotics for your pet that may be used alone, or in combination with a surgical procedure.

Patients suffering from neurologic problems that impair their ability to walk can be helped tremendously by custom fitted braces. Orthotics can also help protect joints and/or tendons by minimizing movement during the healing phase following surgery.

When other medical conditions require needed orthopedic surgery to be postponed, custom orthotics can allow for a safe increase in activity, provide pain relieving stabilization, and help prevent further injury.

Raising healthy foals

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Interview with Dr. Tamara GullGull photo

Few things are cuter than baby horses, or foals but raising a healthy foal can be a challenge.

The mare, or mother horse, should be in good health with ample nutrition. Giving birth in a clean, open pasture is ideal for horses, and reduces their exposure to the diseases and parasites found in barns and stalls. Treating the navel cord with an antiseptic solution, such as chlorhexidine, helps prevent the entry of bacteria into the newborn foal’s body. Vaccinations for the mare should be boosted about six weeks before she gives birth to ensure she has high levels of antibodies to give to her baby.

In horses, it is crucial that the foal nurses in the first six hours of life to receive the antibody rich colostrum that protects it from disease. Failure to receive sufficient colostrum can be life-threatening in horses. Your veterinarian can conduct a simple test to see if your foal has received the protection it needs.

Taking care of a few basics can help ensure that today’s frolicking foal will reach its full potential, and grow to be the thriving horse of tomorrow.