Since your pets cannot tell you when their teeth are hurting, it is important to have a good oral exam done regularly by your veterinarian. Bad breath, rubbing the face, chewing more on one side, these are all indications that your pet may have some dental problems. Regular brushing, as well as dental treats, can help, but are no substitute for an anesthetic dental by a vet. We also do not recommend non-anesthetic dentals for pets as 70% or the tooth is in the root, below the gumline. Full dental x-rays are necessary to avoid missing crucial issues. a non-anesthetic cleaning may make the teeth look better for a short time, but does not take care of the total oral health. Visit our links page for a list of additional reading about pet dental health, as well as our dentistry page.
In some situations we may be able to come to you for vet care. While this is mostly reserved for large animal farm visits, we have extended these services to small animals in need. There are some situations now where we are able to diagnose over the phone. Video calls are lovely, but might present challenges with privacy concerns. Phone calls and pictures are what we rely on mostly. We are also able to provide at home euthanasia in some situations. We try to be flexible to meet the needs of our patients who are not able to come in. Please contact us if you have a situation that requires a home or virtual visit and we will do our best to accommodate you.
We perform routine surgeries such as Spays and Neuters. Our Vet, Technicians and Assistants work as a brilliant team and patients are monitored during the entire surgical procedure as well as during their recovery. We also offer more advanced surgeries including Lumpectomies, Exploratories, Hernia Repairs, Cesareans and more. We have a blood analyzer in clinic so you have the option of having blood work and ECG's done on your Pet prior to surgery to check their general health and the health of their kidneys, liver and heart, to name a few. Our veterinarian and our support staff attend continuing education and we do in clinic training to ensure we are current and up to date in our procedures. All of these factors minimize the risks that may be involved with anesthesia and surgery.
It is always a struggle to know what to do when your pet's quality of life starts to decline. They are here for such a relatively short time. What is most important is that we make those years as comfortable and happy as possible. We work with each client and patient individually to come up with the best plan for them. There are many things that we can do for them to minimize pain, including tailored nutrition, and a medication plan. Regular check ups are important at this stage to see how things are changing. Medication can effect the body's internal systems as well, so blood work becomes an important tool to track that. Our links page has a link to a quality of life assessment tool to help you with the decision when it is time. Remember that our pets always live on in our hearts. There are a few keepsake things we can offer, such as cremation with a wooden box for ashes, and clay paw impressions. If you have questions, contact us to learn more.
Our pet hospital puts emphasis on disease prevention. We like to establish a good rapport with our clients and patients. Each time your pet comes into our practice, we will do a basic assessment of overall health including teeth, eyes, ears, skin, nutrition, mobility (joint health) etc. Should anything come up, our veterinarians can make recommendations on what diagnostic tests we can do to check things more closely. We will work with you to come up with a plan to keep your Pet in good health. A good vaccine protocol, parasite prevention protocol, and regular bloodwork is an important part of this. As a bonus for our new patients we try to provide take-home packs. These contain lots of good information about a variety of topics including weight management, mobility, allergies, and puppy/kitten care.
While a thorough physical exam and getting a good history from our clients can sometimes be enough for a vet to figure out what is bothering your pet; identifying the beginnings of a disease process in your dog or cat can often be challenging. We have some valuable tools that can help our veterinarians to diagnose what is wrong with your pet, which will then allow them to come up with a plan to treat your pet and give the quality of life they deserve. We have an assortment of state of the art technology including an ultrasound machine, digital x-ray, and blood and urine analyzers. Our Ultrasound machine we use on different species of animals and areas of the body. X-rays are what we use to diagnose any issues with bone structure but they can also be useful in checking internal organs as well. However, sometimes we need to use an ultrasound to further investigate soft tissues; we commonly use it to examine liver, heart, kidneys, bladder and gastrointestinal tract. Our in house blood analyzer allows us to do a variety of common blood testing procedures including checking red blood cell counts, white blood cell counts, clotting times, electrolyte levels, and various other blood chemistries which give us a good picture of how your pet's internal organs are functioning. We can also use our microscope to check a variety of samples from hair to feces. Even with all this, there are still times we need to ship things to another lab for more complex testing. Turn around time for this is usually within about a week
Dragon Lake Vet Hospital is certified to provide fear free care for your animals at their hospital visits. This means the staff have been trained in the best practiced to avoid stressful situations, and de-escalate should anything arise. We also have a large, open waiting room so that pets can feel like they have their own space. Our separate dog and cat exam rooms feature calming pheromone diffusers specially formulated for dogs and cats. Some pets may be a little nervous coming to the vet, but you can sit back and relax knowing that they are in good hands!