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Protect Your Pet Against Leptospirosis

“Being a pet owner can seem overwhelming at times.”

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Being a pet owner can seem overwhelming at times. There are so many factors to keeping your furry friend happy and healthy that it can be difficult to know where to direct your attention. At Family Pet Veterinary Centers, we want to take the stress out of caring for your pet and help you stay informed about threats to their health.

One of the increasingly prevalent risks comes from a disease called Leptospirosis. Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease that is transmitted through animal fluids like urine. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, bacteria most often enter the animal’s body through its skin or mucous membranes like its eyes, nose, or mouth. Drinking contaminated water is also a common cause of infection. When it goes untreated, Leptospirosis can cause kidney damage, meningitis, liver failure, and even death. In some cases, the disease has also been spread to humans.

Leptospirosis is treatable with antibiotics, and if you know the signs to look for, early detection can help prevent more severe organ damage. Unfortunately the symptoms of Leptospirosis vary widely and are often nonspecific. Symptoms include—but are not limited to—fever, vomiting, diarrhea, refusal to eat, and stiffness. In many instances pets are not obviously ill until the disease is more advanced resulting in severe problems and a much worse prognosis. Patients that survive may also have continued long term kidney and liver problems. If you believe your pet may be infected with Leptospirosis, contact your vet immediately.

While some vets don’t require the vaccine for Leptospirosis, we believe in fully protecting your pets. We have diagnosed and treated multiple cases in the past year. As advocates for disease prevention, Family Pet Veterinary Center’s standard vaccinations include protection against Leptospirosis.

Remembering the Human Animal Bond

“Sitting at home, trying to recover from injury… Ah—I am reminded how much pets matter!”

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Sitting at home, trying to recover from injury… Ah – I am reminded how much pets matter! Thursday I tore my meniscus (cartilage in my knee) to the point of it being flipped into the joint preventing extension of the leg…or there is a huge amount of swelling. (We’ll know more in a few days.) As I cannot walk, I am lying here — something I don’t do much of— and the dog is staring at me. She likely loves the company. I know I appreciate having her. I find myself talking to her, “Daisy, I cannot take you for a walk. Daisy, do think that’s a funny video? Daisy, don’t bark at the deer in the back yard.” She just looks back at me as if patiently waiting for me to fulfill her whims, yet nothing happens except staring in each other’s eyes. I start the 15-minute process to the bathroom. I drop my crutch. She runs to it as if she wants to pick it up, but all 8 pounds of her cannot do much except sniff it. Later she snuggles into the blanket next to me, her warmth comforting. I now truly see what I thought I understood before – the human animal bond. Words cannot fully express how much pets matter. It’s like one of my other favorite sayings, ‘Pets Make People Human.’ I have new admiration for the role pets play in people’s lives. I am glad that I as a veterinarian can impact the health of patients and thus helping not only the patient but the relationship with the owner, improving people’s and community’s lives. Some may call that a stretch, but when one considers the potential for zoonotic disease, prevention really matters.

And back to this snuggling dog… she really should be called ‘Sedative’ as she functions well in that manner. I think of the elderly, sick, and some disabled – the amount of time they spend with their pet is regularly much more. I care and want to help all pets, but the impact of disease is greater on the human animal bond for people in those situations. Although I am unhappy to be sitting here, no longer independent – I am glad to spend more time with my ‘sedative’ dog and am a bit envious of those that are able to spend so much time with their pet. Granted – I get to spend a lot of time with many pets, something I greatly appreciate in my career.
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From Animal Dentistry Referral Services, 1326 Sunset Drive, Norwalk, IA, 50211

Surveys to Record Patient Outcomes

As a dentistry and oral surgery resident, there is a publication requirement. Through our studies and process of knowing and becoming familiar with the latest literature spanning exotics, horses, as well as dogs and cats – one learns all about the different facets of veterinary dentistry: periodontics, orthodontics, crowns, endodontics, restorations, as well as surgeries such as oral tumors and fracture repair. As veterinarians, we treat patients that are usually not telling us about the severity of their issues, though research shows they have the same pain as people. Other research shows around 70% of dog and cat patients have changes seen with intraoral radiographs. This means veterinarians doing complete anesthetic dental procedures are treating hidden painful problems. Over and over, clients are volunteering a progress report to the veterinary team, “I am surprised how much more puppy-like he/she is!” This is just an anecdotal response veterinarians doing thorough dentistry are used to hearing – but there are no statistics showing how often this is really heard. This has become our project, to record/quantify owners’ perceptions on patient outcomes. In this day and age, using technology within the office is greatly accepted by clients. Now I began the hunt for a good survey tool. I looked at over 5 different online survey tools. The only one I found that fit our needs was sogosurvey. They have a unique start and pause function that does not require a unique email address per patient allowing us to collect our survey during the initial consultation then hold it for 10-85 days to record the owner response on follow up after the procedure.
Like some others, SoGoSurvey also allows data analysis, rating scales, polling and assessments, the ability to export to paper, and much much more. As a resident, finding economical ways to complete the research project and do it well is essential. Thank you So Go Survey!
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From Animal Dentistry Referral Services, 1326 Sunset Drive, Norwalk, IA, 50211

Family Pet Veterinary Center Handmade Cards

Every week we send out many cards to clients. Some are welcoming them to the office. Others are congratulations. We always send sympathy cards for the loss of a pet. Most of these cards are hand stamped.

Clients have likely seen information on our dental referral service. I am in a residency program in veterinary dentistry. Why do I like it so much? Dentistry is the best way to improve the lives of pets. It is also the arts and crafts of veterinary medicine. I need to use my art side as well as my science side.

There are times I am overwhelmed with work/family/life. My stress relief/outlet is a half hour of paper crafting – I feel renewed and love that I can admire in a short time something gorgeous I’ve accomplished. Then I am able to get back to the long marathon tasks instead of the almost instant gratification of many paper crafts.

While I am an experienced paper crafter, it’s always fun to learn new techniques. I signed up with Altenew’s classes to view other ideas. These classes are easy for me to view on my phone when I have a few minutes between meetings.

This blog series will showcase projects from the classes I’m using to make the sympathy or welcome cards for the office.

In the class, Let it Shine, many shiny techniques were shown: glitter, glitter tape, embossing, rhinestones, sequins, mirror card stock, shimmer pen, foil, etc… The designs shown were primarily clean layouts always with some sparkle. I wanted to add some new shine techniques in my demo card. The additional techniques I used that were not in this class are: acetate, inka gold as paint, glass glitter, pearlized card stock, clear lacquer, and gilding flakes. I also used dry embossing and the shown effects of glitter tape and mirror card stock.

I chose butterflies – one of my favorite images for cards. I did not have a sympathy die and would have preferred it as butterflies are good for sympathy cards especially paired with a saying from Ralph Waldo Emerson: “What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls the butterfly.”

I chose a monochromatic effect with gold/metallics and white:

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No stamping was done in this card, only dies with my Big Shot machine.

The base is made from pearlized card stock, folded and a quarter page of acetate attached with double stick tape and altenew’s glitter washi. A strip of mirror card stock was used to sandwich the acetate and complete the look. Sizzix’s large butterfly (Tim Holtz?) was cut with a steel rule die then dry embossed with the coordinating embossing folder. The body of the butterfly is clear lacquer that can be used as dew drops in flower cards. Gilding flakes in metallic colors were pressed onto the dry embossed areas and adhered with tombo monoadhesive. Inka gold Bees Wax pain was used with a water brush to apply to some of the embossed areas. The margins of the butterfly were finished with tombo and silver glass glitter. The die cut hello was attached with tombo and the bottom edge of mirror card stock was attached with redline double sided tape.

If you are the recipient of this card from my office, I hope it brightens your day!

Dr. Jen

Family Pet Veterinary Center Handmade Cards

Every week we send out many cards to clients. Some are welcoming them to the office. Others are congratulations. We always send sympathy cards for the loss of a pet. Most of these cards are hand stamped.

Clients have likely seen information on our dental referral service. I am in a residency program in veterinary dentistry. Why do I like it so much? Dentistry is the best way to improve the lives of pets. It is also the arts and crafts of veterinary medicine. I need to use my art side as well as my science side.

There are times I am overwhelmed with work/family/life. My stress relief/outlet is a half hour of paper crafting – I feel renewed and love that I can admire in a short time something gorgeous I’ve accomplished. Then I am able to get back to the long marathon tasks instead of the almost instant gratification of many paper crafts.

While I am an experienced paper crafter, it’s always fun to learn new techniques. I signed up with Altenew’s classes to view other ideas. These classes are easy for me to view on my phone when I have a few minutes between meetings.

This blog series will showcase projects from the classes I’m using to make the sympathy or welcome cards for the office.

The first class, All About Layering 1, illustrated layering of different stamp sets. The designs shown were primarily clean layouts often with some embellishment. Some were outlines and color fills, while others layered without the outlines. Some used coordinating dies to cut out the images while others did not. The inspiration for my card was the muted tones in the background with the subtle “wink” of Stella accent.

I chose warm greys and yellows for this project:

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The stamp set selected is Altenew’s build a flower Gardenia set. This set comes with the coordinating dyes. I used Tim Holtz’s stamp positioner to align the layers. The flower was outlined with moon rock ink and filled base to top with buttercream, sunkissed, and sand dunes ink. The leaves (base to top layer) were inked with lava rock, morning frost, and evening gray. The text (from Remember This) was also in moon rock and the thin border paper coordinates with moon rock ink. The gardenia was cut with the coordinating die, covered with Wink of Stella to add a hint of shine, and raised by attaching two layers of foam dimensionals.

If you are the recipient of this card from my office, I hope it brightens your day!

Dr. Jen

Patient Highlight – Meet Bruce!

Patient Highlight – Meet Bruce!

Last month, this adorable kitten was relinquished to a local rescue group following a traumatic injury to his left front leg. When Bruce was brought into our Norwalk office his leg had been mangled by a mower blade and infection had already set in. Unfortunately, Bruce’s leg was not salvageable as the leg had been crushed and Bruce no longer had any feeling in it. Following his examination, Dr. Maggie Wilson recommended forelimb amputation to the rescue group.

Fortunately for Bruce, the rescue group allowed Dr. Maggie to surgically remove his leg and treat his infection so he could return to his normal, active life. While amputation is never something we jump to recommending, it can be a great option for some patients (like Bruce) who have injuries that are not repairable by other means. Most pets do great following a limb amputation as they use their other three legs to balance out the difference. The majority of pets who have undergone limb amputation are back up to their full capacity within 2 weeks following surgery.

During his recovery period, Bruce has spent quite a bit of time at our Norwalk office with his foster mom Erin (who happens to also be one of our fabulous veterinary assistants). As you can see in the video below, Bruce is now healed and infection free, and he has returned to his active, playful self. If you are interested in adopting Bruce, or would like to contribute to the rescue that is paying for his medical costs, please visit the Panora Pets Facebook page.

Bruce Post-Amputation Video

If you are interested in reading more about the type of services we offer pets, please visit our website at www.fampetvet.com.

Is your family looking to add a new member?

There are a number of ways to find your new furry friend! From breeders to Craigslist adds to local shelters, it’s hard to know the best choice. Although a “free” pet from the local paper may be tempting, they are anything but. New pets need wellness exams, vaccines, deworming, and a variety of other care that adds up fast. We at the Family Pet Veterinary Center strongly recommend checking your local shelters before other sources. The shelters are full of adorable, adoptable cats and dogs in need of permanent homes! Continue reading “Is your family looking to add a new member?”