Category Archives: Pet Emergencies & First Aid

Say No to Gravy: Rich, Fatty, Indulgent Foods Can Trigger Painful Pancreatitis in Pets

Pancreatitis in pets should be considered a pet emergency

Americans love Thanksgiving because of family traditions. Some play or watch football, others volunteer. Collectively, we all love the together time of the holidays, but let’s be honest. It’s the food that seals the deal. In other words, our nationally consistent table traditions keep us coming back for more (and more) until the leftovers are packed up for Black Friday snacks.

Everyone wants a Thanksgiving to remember, but certainly not at the expense of the family pet. With abundant ways for them to find trouble, we want to remind everyone of the dangers of pancreatitis in pets and how you can prevent it this holiday season.

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Your Right to Know: Why the Cost of Veterinary Care is so Expensive

The cost of veterinary care can be stressful for some pet owners

“Why is veterinary care so expensive?” is a question we’ve heard many times at West Park Animal Hospital. While it’s understandable to think we’re simply trying to make a profit off our clients, we want you to know this simply is not the case.

We value each and every one of our patients and their families, which is why we want to discuss the cost of veterinary care and what goes into providing the high-quality service you’ve come to expect and deserve.

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Xylitol and Pets: Reminders of a Not-so-Sweet Reality

Xylitol and pets don't mix!

With its claims of weight loss and improved health, the low-carb craze has everyone from teenagers to grandparents giving it a go. Because “low-carb” usually equates to “low-sugar,” sugar substitutes such as aspartame, erythritol, stevia, and xylitol seem to be in practically everything these days.

Meeting your health goals while still keeping your pet safe requires education, especially when it comes to xylitol toxicity. Xylitol and pets do not mix, and we want to make sure our readers are aware of the dangers associated with this particular substance.

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Life’s the Pits When It Comes to Pets and Pitted Fruit Toxicity

Pets and pitted fruit can be toxic to pets and be a pet safety concernBy now, we all know that fruits and vegetables are part of a healthy diet. The same goes for our pets, who can benefit from the added vitamins and minerals found in small amounts of fresh produce. Allowing pets to have a bite of banana, a scoop of cooked sweet potato, or a few steamed green beans here and there is something pet owners can feel good about, and a treat that many pets enjoy immensely.

One can always have too much of a good thing, of course, and when it comes to pitted fruits, such as peaches, cherries, and nectarines, this is certainly the case. Pets and pitted fruit toxicity is a serious issue that all owners of fruit loving pets should be aware of. Here’s how to give your pet all the benefits of these nutritious fruits while they’re in season, without exposing them to a potential toxin. Continue reading

The Golden Years: End of Life Care for Exotic Pets

Aging happens no matter if you are a human, dog, or hamster. At West Park Animal Hospital, we know that your pocket pet deserves the best during their golden years, just as much as any dog or cat. End of life care for exotic pets is important, too, and we are here to help your senior pet live with dignity and comfort.

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Corneal Ulcers in Pets: A Common Condition

WestPark_iStock_000019089342_LargePerhaps the most frequent eye problem that we see in our pet patients is the corneal ulcer. Pets with this problem often squint the eye, have tearing, or maybe even redness and swelling. These eye ulcers can be extremely painful and vary in severity from no big deal to an emergency situation.

Because corneal ulcers in pets can be so serious, it is very important that pet owners be able to recognize signs of a problem and know what to expect when they occur. Read on to learn all you need to know about eye ulcers in pets. Continue reading

Prevent a Pet Poisoning: What To Know

WestPark_iStock_000015606255_LargeEach year, pet care professionals and pet owners around the nation recognize the importance of poison prevention. The presence of toxic plants or dangerous food ingredients are seemingly everywhere, so how do pet owners safely set up a pet’s environment?

In honor of all the pets we strive to protect, let’s sift through the numerous ways we can prevent a pet poisoning. Continue reading

Chocolate Dangers for Dogs: Tasty Trouble

chocolate truffleWe all know our dogs will eat just about anything. From our brand new shoes to our three-day old socks, even the most well behaved pooch can occasionally find something that is just too hard to resist. As such, it’s no surprise that something as delicious as chocolate can be too much to for our four-legged friends to ignore! And, as Valentine’s day approaches, Americans are poised to bring a steady supply of the stuff home, making increased awareness of the chocolate dangers for dogs a must.

The dangers of chocolate are fairly well known to dog owners. Chocolate contains caffeine and a compound called theobromine, both of which are a danger to dogs and cats. While cats don’t seem particularly fond of chocolate, we do know that some dogs will rip the house apart to find any amount.   Continue reading

Planning for a Pet Emergency

calling the vetFor many pet owners, nothing is scarier than a pet emergency. Whether a car has hit your cat or dog on a Saturday afternoon, or if he or she starts having seizures at 10 p.m., the unexpected can always throw us for a loop and give us cause to panic.

But even though we never know when an emergency will strike, there are ways to plan ahead for emergency pet care.

At West Park Animal Hospital, we are prepared for your pet’s emergency day and night. We are staffed until 1 a.m., 7 days a week to provide the critical care your pet needs when a crisis strikes, and have the experience and know-how needed to handle your pet’s situation. Continue reading