Kidney Disease in Pets 

As in humans, the kidneys play an important role in the overall health of our pets. Apart from making urine, kidneys are responsible for regulating the balance of electrolytes in the body, keeping blood pressure in check, and the production of hormones that aid in calcium metabolism and red blood cell production. 

While a diagnosis of kidney disease in our pet is understandably alarming, with proper care, this disease is usually manageable over the long term.

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When a Kiss Won’t Cut it: A Spotlight on Pet Pain Management

Pet pain management is key to your pet living a long lifeWhen it comes to pet pain management, veterinary medicine has made tremendous strides in the past century. It’s now common knowledge that pets feel pain in much the same way as humans and that chronic pain can impair the healing process by interfering with immune function, decreasing appetite, and increasing anxiety.

At Lone Tree Veterinary Medical Center, improving the quality and longevity of our patients’ lives is one of our top priorities. Let’s take a moment to focus on a pet’s pain and the various ways we can help manage it.

Assessing Pet Pain

Identifying a pet’s pain is the first step towards treatment. Most animals will hide signs of pain and discomfort because this would convey weakness and vulnerability. Consequently, knowing when a pet is hurting is not always easy.

Interestingly, there are different types of pain and different types of causes. Since pain is a sensory response to a painful stimulus, there are often situations where the source of a pet’s pain is not obvious, as it would be if the pet had a visible wound or injury.    Continue…

Deciphering Pet Food Labels:  What You Need To Know

pet food labelsAt first glance, feeding your dog or cat appears to be the easiest aspect of pet ownership. You simply grab a bag of pet food off the shelf at your local grocery store, pour some in a bowl, and place it on the floor. Right?

Well, not exactly. Today’s discerning pet owner is quite aware of the overwhelming array of pet food choices available, and sifting through the options can be downright overwhelming.  Grain-free, gluten-free, corn-free, organic, raw – the list of potential “best” diets for a given pet seems to be never-ending.

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Canned vs. Dry: The Pet Food Debate

Feeding your pet seems like it should be a relatively simple task; simply buy some food and pour it in your pet’s bowl, right? Of course, most pet owners realize that selecting and feeding our pets is more complicated than that, and many of us struggle with the conflicting information surrounding pet food.

One of the biggest questions when it comes to feeding our pets is whether to choose canned or dry food.  At Lone Tree Veterinary Medical Center, we understand that your pet’s health and wellness begins with a high quality diet, and we want to help you make informed choices in selecting the right pet food for your furry friend.

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Dog Breath! Dental Health for Pets

The health of our pets’ teeth and gums is a component of their care that is too commonly ignored. While most people would never entertain the thought of not brushing their own teeth, they usually don’t think of their pets’ teeth in the same way. Yet, according to the American Veterinary Dental Association, up to 80% of dogs and 70% of cats have some form of dental disease by the age of three. This serves as a reminder that it doesn’t take long for problems to develop when we fail to care for our pet’s teeth, even when they are young.

Without daily cleaning, bacteria in the mouth combine with saliva and food on the teeth and gums, causing a sticky plaque to form. This plaque eventually turns into tartar, a hard, mineralized build up.

Over time, plaque and tartar continue to accumulate, causing inflammation of the tissues around the teeth. This painful process is called periodontal disease and, when left unchecked, it results in both oral and systemic infection, tooth decay and loss of the teeth.

Preventive dental care in pets is very important, and Lone Tree Veterinary Medical Center wants you to understand how routine oral examinations, home dental care, and professional dental cleanings play into your pet’s overall well-being. Continue…

The Ins and Outs of Pet Home Dental Care

Dental care isn’t just for humans. By now, most pet owners are aware of the importance of good dental hygiene for their pets, and this is evidenced by the hundreds of pet home dental care products available to pet owners everywhere. But, do these treats, chews, rinses, sprays, and water additives really have what it takes to keep your pet’s mouth in tiptop shape?

Brushing is Best!

First, and foremost, there is no substitute for daily brushing when it comes to the care of your pet’s teeth.  Although, for many, the task may seem daunting, it needn’t be. Brushing your dog or cat’s teeth can take just a minute a day and the pet specific toothbrush and toothpaste products we recommend are safe and easy to use.

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Don’t Forget The Little Guys: Pocket Pet Wellness Care

rabbit in basket outdoorIt’s been said that good things come in small packages, and pocket pet owners couldn’t agree more.

Rabbits, Guinea pigs, gerbils, ferrets, lizards, and other small animals have been steadily increasing in popularity as pets for children and families. Because they are smaller and seem easier to care for than traditional family pets such as dogs and cats, many pet owners don’t realize that their pocket pet needs routine veterinary care, too.

Why Pocket Pet Wellness Care Is Important

The truth is, small and exotic pets derive all of the same benefits from regular checkups as their canine and feline counterparts. Along with making sure they’re in good health, check-ups for pocket pet wellness is an opportunity to take care of cosmetic maintenance issues that are not possible to do at home. Continue…

The More You Know: Preventing Accidental Pet Poisoning

Wheaton_iStock_000001700707_LargeWe do everything we can to protect our pets from the dangers of the world; we walk them on leashes, have them microchipped, shelter them from the elements, feed them nutritious diets, and bring them in for regular wellness exams. In our efforts to keep our pets safe, many of us overlook the potential for accidental pet poisoning in and around our homes.

March 20th marks the beginning of National Poison Prevention Week. While this event is intended to educate the public about the dangers of accidental poisonings in children, we’d like to take the opportunity to extend this awareness to include our pets. Continue…