Dental Prophylaxis and Treatment at North Ogden Animal Hospital
We perform dental cleaning and polishing to prevent dental disease. This is recommended yearly in pets that have consistent in-home care and proper diet. Cats require about 15-20 minutes under anesthesia and dogs require 30-40 minutes. Price varies depending on age and size of pet. We will provide you with an estimate tailored to your pet's individual situation. This price includes hospitalization, pre-medication, human grade anesthesia induction, monitoring during anesthesia, dental scaling above and below the gum line,. comprehensive evaluation of each tooth, polishing and fluoride application. If further dental treatment is anticipated we will give you an approximate estimate. Our goal is to get and maintain a healthy and comfortable mouth for your pet.
Dental disease starts with the accumulation of plaque. If plaque remains for 48 hours it turns into a rock hard substance called tartar. Plaque can be removed by brushing. Tartar can only be removed by scaling. At first the gums (gingiva) will become red and then swollen. Most pets will have no symptoms, but sometimes they will drool, hesitate while eating, or stop eating dry food. Bacteria infect the area causing bad breath. Periodontitis (the progressive loss of bone surrounding the teeth) soon develops. Bone loss is irreversible. If it is allowed to continue, the tooth/gum will be painful and eventually the tooth will loosen and fall out. Bone infections can be severe enough to cause fractures or abscesses that drain onto the face or into the nose. As the pet eats, bacteria can enter the bloodstream through the inflamed tissue and damage other organs such as liver, heart or kidneys. In addition, airborne bacteria are continually inhaled, leading to lung problems.
There are many reasons that dental disease can develop. Small breeds are more prone to accumulate tartar and develop severe bone infections sooner than large breeds. Genetics can play a large role. Just as with some people who tend to get cavities more readily than others, some pets are prone to dental problems. Our recommendations include daily brushing, dry food (preferably T/D), tartar control chews, and/pr daily antibacterial rinses. We do not recommend offering bones since they commonly cause fractured teeth. We would be happy to tailor a plan to you and your pet's temperament.
The following is a summary of what services we can provide your pet. Each pet's needs will be different and we will provide you with an estimate of our recommendations based on a thorough physical exam of your pet.
Pre-anesthetic physical exam. We will listen for heart murmurs, abnormal rhythms, or abnormal lung sounds. We will alert you if irregularities exist. Chest x-rays or an ECG may be recommended. We will educate you about specific risk factors your pet may have and the tools we will use to minimize those risks.
Pre-anesthetic blood screen. Not all conditions are readily detectable on a physical exam. By completing a prescreen in a pet less than 7 years and a complete blood screen in a pet greater than 7 help us detect and treat problems even before your pet shows signs of illness. If any significant abnormalities are found we will contact you. It is preferable, but not required, to have this completed before the day of the dental.
Intravenous fluids. Just as is standard with human medicine, we use IV fluids to help maintain blood pressure during anesthesia, prevent dehydration, shorten the recovery period and provide access for injections without stress. IV fluids are especially valuable for elderly patients (older than 7 years) or those with kidney problems.
Blood Pressure and ECG (Heart) Monitoring. These advanced monitoring tools allow us to fine-tune our anesthetic levels making anesthesia safer for your pet. These are the same tools human anesthesiologists us on us!
General Anesthesia. We induce general anesthesia with an injection then then place a tube in your pet's windpipe. This protects their lungs from the fluid generated by teeth cleaning and allows us to assist their breathing if needed. Our anesthetic protocols are designed to be as safe as possible and are individually planned base on your pet's size, health, breed and age. We provide warmth during the procedure via several methods. We continue to monitor and warm them during recovery.
Scaling and evaluation. We will remove the tartar above and below the gum line using a state of the art ultrasonic scaler. Each tooth and surrounding gum will be evaluated.
Dental x-rays. Since pets can't tell us if they are in pain, we rely heavily on dental x-rays to help us decide if the root and the surrounding bone is healthy (try telling your dog that you have a dull ache in the left side of your mouth). X-rays are indicated if there is any evidence of neck lesions (painful cavity-like lesions on the neck of the tooth), bone loss, gum inflammation, fractured or discolored teeth or after dental extractions.
Extractions. Our goal is to resolve painful conditions experienced by your pet. This may require the removal of teeth which cannot be salvaged. Pets do amazingly well afterwards. We use the most current equipment and extraction techniques to minimize trauma and promote rapid healing. Within a few weeks the once painful site is replaced by hard gum tissue. With very painful conditions, often pet owners remark to us that within a few days their pets are feeling better than they have in years. Even those pets with no teeth left often continue to eat dry food without difficulty. If your pet has had major extractions, we often recommend that they be hospitalized overnight on IV fluids. They are given any pain medications or antibiotics that are needed and kept warm and are kept comfortable. They typically go home the next morning, well rested and hydrated.
Fractured teeth. If we identify fractured teeth with pulp exposed on the inside of the tooth, our recommendation is extraction or root canal therapy. If the pulp has been exposed, the body can never wall it off completely and bacteria will continue to travel down through the tooth root, causing nerve pain and infection. A large percentage of fractured teeth will progress to an abscess. This may go undiagnosed for years if dental x-rays are not taken. We are happy to refer you to a veterinarian who performs root canals if you desire to save the tooth.
Pain control. We use several methods to control any discomfort associated with the dental procedure. If there were extractions, you can expect your pet to show some tenderness for a few days and we will prescribe meds to help. Local anesthetic blocks (just as are used in human dentistry) allow us to use lower doses of general anesthetic and provide hours of pain control during your pets recovery. We will prescribe pain medications for a few days afterward if teeth were extracted. Your pet’s comfort is very important to us!
Polishing and fluoride treatment. After cleaning, the mouth is flushed with an antibacterial solution and examined for completeness of cleaning. The teeth are then polished smooth to slow tartar accumulation. A fluoride application decreases sensitivity of teeth and also slows tartar buildup.
Follow-up. We will discuss any special care after anesthesia when you pick up your pet. Tartar begins accumulating within days after a dental cleaning and we will help you make a home care plan that works for you and your pet. Brushing can be started one week after a simple dental. Home care can make a profound difference in the health of your pet’s mouth, and greatly decrease the cost of further dental treatments.
It’s important to have a plan for your pets should a disaster occur. Have your pets wear a collar and with updated identification tags and contact information. Having your pet’s microchipped with current contact information is also a good way of making sure your pets are reunited with you if you are separated. Purchase a pet carrier for each pet and have your pet’s name, your name and contact information on each carrier. In order for your pets to be cooperative in the event of an emergency, help familiarize them with their individual carrier and practice catching and transporting them. Keep a leash and their carrier near an exit for a quick and easy get away.
In case of a disaster, include items for your pets in your preparedness kit. Items recommended by the Weber-Morgan Health Department in the Family Emergency Preparedness guide are pet food and water, any medications with clearly labeled directions your pet may be on, your pet’s medical records, litter box, food and water dish, first aid kit, and information sheet with your pets name, feeding schedule, and any medical care or behavior problems.
***The information gathered for this post is from the Weber-Morgan Health Department in the Family Emergency Preparedness guide; Disaster Preparedness for Your Pet from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The 4th of July is coming, people are buying fireworks for parties, and pet owners are dreading the stress of dealing with a panicked pet. Summer thunderstorms are on their way, and pets sense their arrival.
Knowing the signs
Common signs include panting, pacing, drooling, barking, licking their lips, hiding, etc. If your dog hears the booming noise of a firework or a thunderstorm you know you are in for a long night. Be sure to monitor your pet for changes in their behavior, especially if you don’t know if they have ever been around loud noises or bright flashes.
Providing comforting distractions
If you know there will be fireworks or know a thunderstorm is coming, try to create a safe place for your pet. A safe place may be in a quiet secluded room; maybe a bathroom downstairs towards the middle of the house with the fan on would be helpful as well. If you don’t have a fan, maybe try a white noise machine or playing some gentle music to help drown out the booming sounds. If your dog is motivated by food maybe try a Kong toy, or something similar, filled with their favorite treats. To fill the gaps of the toy you could use peanut butter, yogurt, or applesauce and then freeze it so it’s hard by the time the fireworks start so they have an enjoyable treat to work on.
You could also comfort your dog in a loving voice. Holding them and speaking in a soothing tone may help them relax. Try playing fetch or tug-of-war with their favorite toy. When your dog hears the booming noise they feel a very genuine panic and you may be their only comfort.
If you have tried everything you can think of but nothing is working you should consult your family veterinarian about what would be best for your dog. We have many different options that may or may not work for your dog. Alprazolam and Trazodone are good medications to try; but please consult your family veterinarian first.
Rattlesnakes can be found in the wetlands, deserts and forests, from sea level to mountain elevations. Locally snakes are active when the weather is warm (spring to autumn), thought further south in warm climates they can be active almost year-round.
Rattlesnake bites are considered a serious veterinary emergency and require immediate action. Snake bites result in injury or death to thousands of dogs each year. Treatment for rattlesnake bites can be quite costly, from the anti-venom itself to hospitalization, IV fluids and supportive care. The anti-venom may also cause an adverse reaction to venom and prolonging the time available to seek emergency medical care. This vaccine can reduce the impact of the venom, making treatment shorter and decreasing the likelihood of anti-venom and hospitalization needed.
Another way to protect your dog when you are out running, hiking, camping, or hunting, is to avoid rattlesnakes all together. Training in rattlesnake avoidance can help your dog eliminate a situation where a bite can occur, preventing the need for emergency care at all. We host annual rattlesnake avoidance classes using the company Get Rattled base out of Reno, Nevada. Our upcoming 2018 classes will be held this June 2nd and 3rd. Get Rattled uses decades of combined knowledge in different aversion training methods, and offer fact vs. fiction education to pet owners.
**Information gathered for this post sourced from literature provided by the Red Rock Rattlesnake Company and Get Rattled.
Dr. Marie Yamane
Dr. Yamane is originally from Syracuse, UT; she received her bachelors in Animal, Dairy and Veterinary Science from Utah State University in 2014. She attended veterinary school through the WIMU regional program where she attended 2 years of vet school at USU and finished up her last two years of school at Washington State University in Pullman, WA. She is a recent graduate, but is excited to see your pets and be back in Utah. Some of her interests include behavior, soft tissue and internal medicine. In her spare time she enjoys anything that involves her three northern breed dogs and her family.
20 Foods your dog should NEVER eat..
Food kept in your house may be tasty but many are toxic for your dog. Here are 20 foods your dog shouldn’t have:
Alcohol Mushrooms Yeast/Dough
Caffeine Onions Tobacco
Dairy Sugar-free Gum & Candy Macadamia Nuts
Chocolate Ham Spicy foods
Nutmeg Seeds/Pits Salt (in large quantities)
Chives Avocado Garlic
Grapes/Raisins Broccoli (in large quantities)
10 Cat household Poisons...
Your household items may cause your cat to become very ill or be toxic to them. Here are 10 items you should keep out of reach:
Aspirin Lilies Ibuprofen (i.e. Advil)
English Ivy Marijuana Acetaminophen (i.e. Tylenol)
Rat poison Chocolate Sago Palm
History of Chickens
A secure enclosure is vital to prevent predation, especially at night. Burying a wire fence one foot beneath the ground level can insure that predators can’t dig into a coop. Neighborhood dogs can also attack chickens, so keeping them in an attended yard is desirable.
The main activities for free-range hens are grazing, ground pecking, ground scratching and dust bathing. Free-range hens will still forage even though you have provided ad libitum (providing food at all times). This behavior may result in intoxication because of ground contaminants; such as, leaves, pine needles, and any debris in the coop.
It is important that you monitor flock behaviors, as individual chickens may become dangerously bullied to the point of being denied access to food or water or being seriously injured. The roosters tend to fight each other or get really aggressive with the hens during breeding season.
Chickens require at least 38 nutrients in their diets in appropriate and balanced concentrations. The criteria to determine the requirements include growth, feed efficiency, egg production, prevention of signs of deficiency and quality of poultry product. Diet adjustments should be made based on production and bioavailability. The requirements assume the nutrients are in a highly bioavailable form but they do not include a margin of safety. You should add a margin of safety based on changes in rates of feed intake due to environmental temperature or dietary energy content, genetic strain, husbandry conditions (especially the level of sanitation), and the presence of stressors, including infectious diseases and other illnesses.
Chickens need a clean water source available at all times; therefore, their water should be cleaned frequently to keep it fresh and not contaminated. Changing the water will help prevent gastrointestinal impaction. Some chicken owners will put bleach tablets in their water to help reduce microorganisms but it could cause harmful health effects. The birds also may refuse to drink the tainted water.
*The information gathered for this post is directly from Vetcom Volume 58 Backyard Chickens*
Lethargy. Excessive thirst. Frequent urination.If your pet is displaying any of these common signs, he or she may have diabetes.
If you didn’t know your dog or cat could develop diabetes, you’re not alone. Many owners don’t realize diabetes can affect pets too, so learning that your dog or cat has the condition can leave you with many questions.
While there’s no cure for diabetes, proper care can help your pet live a happy, healthy, active life. The more you know about diabetes, the better you’ll be able to work with your veterinarian to successfully manage your pet’s health.
Your veterinarian is an essential partner in your pet’s diabetes care. Only your veterinarian can diagnose diabetes and provide appropriate preventive and management programs.
July is the time when the fireworks begin, thunderstorms can roll in at night and dogs can become anxious and scared. When our furry friends become scared by noises, there is potential for dogs to cause harm to themselves and others. Sileo (meaning "to be silent" in Latin) is a product developed by Orion Corporation and distributed by Zoetis, specifically for dogs with noise aversion. When dogs suffer from noise aversion they can show symptoms during events of fireworks and thunderstoms such as pacing/restlessness, lip licking, trembling, panting, cowering, hiding, freezing/immobility, clinginess, refusal to eat, yawning and vocalizing.
According to Zoetis's* website, "At least one-third of dogs in the United States have noise aversion. Dogs experiencing noise aversion are distressed and suffering. They can damage property, injure themselves or escape. The suffering associated with self-inflicted trauma is readily recognized, but the physiological and emotional toll experienced by dogs with less obvious signs of noise aversion is often overlooked."
With July 4th and our own Utah holiday, Pioneer Day, approaching, there is great potential for dogs to become stressed and nervous due to the noise from fireworks. To help them and their owners, this product alleviates noise anxiety by calming the dog without sedating, which means they will have normal interactions with their owners.
However, Sileo isn't just for events such as fireworks and thunderstorms. Does your dog suffer from noise aversion due to traffic? Construction work? Loud noise from parties or celebrations? Talk to your vet about using Sileo for cases like these!
Sileo is the first and only FDA-approved treatment you can use at home for noise aversion in dogs and is clinically proven to be safe and effective without other treatments. It is fast-acting and can be used as needed for each noise event.
If you have a dog that gets very nervous and scared during storms and fireworks, or displays some of the common behaviors shown in the picture below, give us a call to set up an appointment to discuss this product with one of our doctors.
Sileo is a prescription, therefore we will need to see your pet to prescribe this. If you have any questions please call our clinic at 801-782-4401.
What is a heartworm?
Heartworms are one of the most preventable parasitic diseases in animals. A parasitic roundworm, it spreads from one dog host to another. It is a serious and potentially fatal disease caused by the heartworm, which are a foot-long, that live within the heart, lungs, and blood vessels. This can cause heart failure, lung disease and damage to other organs.
What animals can get heartworms?
Heartworm disease can affect dogs, cats and ferrets mainly. However they can also live within wolves, foxes, sea lions and coyotes (foxes and coyotes are fairly important carriers due to their general proximity to urban areas). Dogs are the primary host for heartworms which means the worms can mature and produce offspring. This also means that, if the dog goes untreated, they could potentially harbor hundreds of worms.
Cats are an atypical host of the parasite. Most heartworms do not survive into adulthood when infecting a cat though this does not mean they cannot have adverse affects due to them. Because they only can only have younger heartworms in their system, cats generally go undiagnosed for this disease (the test used to find heartworms, tests for a specific part of the adult female parasite). The immature heartworms can cause a condition called Heartworm Associated Respiratory Disease (HARD). Another problem cats can face with this disease is the fact that the treatment for dogs cannot be utilized for cats.
How do pets get heartworms?
Heartworm larvae (microfilaria) are transferred from animal to animal via the mosquito. The mosquito plays the most essential role in the transmission of heartworms.
Why should we use prevention?
Heartworms can lead to severe problems with the heart, lungs, liver and kidneys, and can be fatal. In the past we have not had many cases here in Utah. However, since natural disasters such as Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Sandy, dogs have been shipped around the country from places with higher occurrences of heartworm causing the spread of heartworms from those dogs to ours here. Below you can see the American Heartworm Society's maps from 2001 up to 2013 and below that the most current map from 2016. This data is gathered every 3 years to understand what regions are heavily impacted and which are growing in the amount of cases. These maps are only including those cases REPORTED by veterinary clinics. Meaning, there could be several variants or anomalies that impact the data we see. If you look at the 2010 map you can see that it looks like there were less incidences that year but also remember our economy was not doing very well at that time and many people could not afford to take their pets to the vet.
Another note to consider is cost of prevention versus possible treatment (see comparison below in the next section).
Isn’t there a treatment if my dog contracts heartworms?
There are treatments. However, they are costly and painful. The only medication used for treatment is called Immiticide. Immiticide uses arsenic in its production, which makes it difficult to reliably carry it since not many people are willing to work with it. Currently supplies of Immiticide come from France. We try to have some in stock but we can’t always guarantee that we will have it if we have multiple cases occur in the same time frame. This last year we had two dogs diagnosed with heartworms within about a week of each other. If we had had a third dog come in within that next month or two we would not have been able to treat them. Another problem we run into when it comes to treating with Immiticide, due to the arsenic in it, it can be very painful to the dog being treated. It has many potential side effects including but not limited to: anorexia, agitation with or without tremors and excessive salivation, fever, depression, possible respiratory reactions to the dead microfilaria and thromboembolism can be observed 7-20 days after treatment.
The cost of prevention is much less over a life time than it is to handle the treatment if a pet contracts heartworms. For example, a 26-50lb dog that is on prevention its entire life consistently, lives to be about 10 years old. The cost of 10 years worth of prevention can vary from about $840-1100. The cost to treat that pet, if they did contract heartworms, is upwards of at least $2000 and possible complications due to the heartworms and the treatment could end up costing you much more in the long run.
In what ways can heartworms be prevented?
There are several options that we offer on prevention of this debilitating disease. These include the chewable tablets Heartgard and Tri-heart (a generic of Heartgard) as well as Proheart. Proheart is an injection that will cover 6 months of heartworm prevention. It also treats the common hookworm infections that may be present. Proheart can be more convenient than the Heartgard and Tri-heart because you only have to come in to the clinic every 6 months versus having to remember to give a pill every month but it can be more expensive depending on the size of your pet. If you have a larger dog it could actually be more cost effective to do the injection.
How does the prevention work?
We give our pets prevention monthly. The reason is because the prevention works “backwards”. Meaning that, when we give our pet their dose of heartworm prevention it takes care of any heartworm they may have received in the past month. It only works on the stage of heartworm that is passed on from mosquito to pet. So what if your pet was wasn’t on heartworm prevention and was bit by a mosquito 2 months ago? Or 5 months ago? The best option at this point would be to get your pet on prevention and then in 6 months get a heartworm test.
Wouldn’t I want to get a heartworm test done on my pet right away?
Due to the way that a heartworm test works and picks up heartworms, it takes 6-7 months from the time that your pet is bitten to the time we can test positive for heartworms. The test reacts to hormones in the female worms that can only be picked up on the test when they are adults. When a mosquito transfers heartworms to your pet, worms are in a larvae stage that takes the full 6 months to grow.
Even if you miss a dose of prevention on your pet you should get your pet heartworm tested 6 months from the time of the missed dose to make sure your pet is good to go. You should continue to give your pet their heartworm medication or call your veterinarian if you have any questions or concerns.
If there is anything we didn’t cover about Heartworms and their prevention in this article please let us know! We can get your questions and concerns answered!