Run Oskee, Run!

Run Oskee, Run!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Behind the Scenes Tour of our Newest Veterinary Hospital, Prairiehaven Anima Hospital

The doctors and staff at Greenhaven and Best Friends are so excited about our newest clinic, Prairiehaven Animal Hospital. Prairiehaven is located in Sherman, Illinois just off the interstate and right next to Fire and Ale! (MMMMmmm yummy!). It is a fully functioning veterinary office equipped to do just about anything veterinary related, including surgery, dental procedures, ultrasound, laser therapy, fear free appointments, etc… We would love to have you stop in at any time to say “Hi”, take a tour and meet our wonderful staff! 

If you can’t make it out to visit us just yet, the following pictures are a mini tour our clinic and a behind the scenes look at our day to day life!

Let the Tour Begin!!

As you walk into the clinic you will first see our receptionists, Kristi and Charlotte! They love to greet the dogs and cats and are always quick to offer treats! Most of the time they know your name before you even walk in the door and can answer or direct you to the correct person to answer any questions you may have!

Next are our exam rooms! We have 5 exam rooms, one of which is dedicated to only cats. This room is kept apart from the other exam rooms to keep it as quiet as possible for those nervous kitties. Below is a picture of our consultation room where we can go over x-rays, bloodwork or extensive treatment plans with owners. Although you can't seen it, there is a comfy couch in this room too (I know, I was sitting on it to take the picture, HeHe)! Most of the exam rooms look the same

Now for the behind the scenes...

Our treatment area is where we perform most of our blood draws, assessments of hospitalized patients, bandage changes, etc...
On the one side you can see a wet table. We this side for large wounds and some of those not so pleasant and messy procedures (Like expressing anal glands). Across from the wet table you can see a regular counter.

Also in our treatment area are the hospital cages. These cages are for the critically ill patients that need extra care and attention. 

Next is the pharmacy. This is a busy spot throughout the day. the technician s make their call backs from and and are ready to prepare any medication refills for the day. 

One of my favorite things at Prairiehaven, and all of our clinics for that matter, is our in house blood machine. The machine will allow us to receive blood work and urinalysis results in a matter of minutes. The is a great diagnostic tool for us to provide the best care to your pet!
 Here is an example of the blood work
Some of the other awesome features of the clinic are the digital radiology room, surgical suite and separate room for surgical dental procedures. 

Digital radiology allows us to have a board certified radiologist at our fingertips. We can take the image at our facility and evaluate the image. If there is something the doctors are questing or want a boarded radiologist to look at we have the ability to easily send the image to them and receive the results in as little as an hour. 
As you can seen in our picture we have a gas anesthesia machine and monitoring equipment. Ever patient is monitored closely during surgery. It is not on the surgery table now but we do have a warming blanket to make sure patient do not get too cold during surgery.  you can also see a funny shaped machine to the right. That is our surgical laser. It allows us to cut using a laser rather than a blade. This cauterizes as it cuts meaning there is less hemorrhage during surgery. All of our cat declaws are done with a surgical laser to limit hemorrhage and promote faster healing.

Having a separate room for dental procedures is great because it keeps all of that bacteria from the mouth in one room. A dogs mouth contains A LOT of bacteria, especially when there is a large amount of tarter build up. Having a private dental room keeps everything contained!

On to boarding and bathing. We have several cage sizes to accommodate all breeds and sizes of dogs and cats too! Cats have access to cubbies so they can hide if they are scared. 

 Cat boarding cages

 The special little cubbie for cats!

Scrub-a-dub-dub this tub even has a ramp for dogs to step up into the tub. 

We even have a play ares for the dogs to get exercise!

Well I think you have about seen it all! We hope all of you like it as much as we do and we can't wait for you to stop by and see us!

Happy Tails!!

Doc E

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

The Light Behind "Laser Therapy!"

The Light Behind "Laser Therapy!"

As modern medicine advances, humans and pets a like are benefiting from these advances. We do not just turn to medicines to heal ailments anymore. There are different types of physical therapy, hydrotherapy, acupuncture and laser therapy to heal these ailments faster and fortunately for my patients, these different modes of therapy are also being used in veterinary medicine to help our pets feel more comfortable and live longer, healthier lives. 

In the veterinary world there has been a lot of talk lately about "laser therapy," and there have been MAJOR advances in "laser therapy" in recent years. Laser Therapy can be used for a multitude of reasons from chronic ear infections, to severe dental disease, to helping a surgery patient heal. 

Now, when I talk about "laser therapy" I am not talking about the kind Dr. Evil wanted to destroy the world with. This laser is considered a cold laser because it does not make the tissue being treated hot, a.k.a. it does not cut or explode things. What it does do, is use wave lengths of light to increase
the metabolism of cells, in turn accelerating healing and decreasing inflammation and pain. Research has shown amazing results when using the laser for healing. 

Our doctors and staff are so excited to now offer "laser therapy" to our patients! Each session is done in our office and only takes a few minutes! Sometimes patients just need one session for acute injuries like superficial wounds or after surgery, while other patients need repeat treatments for chronic conditions. 

Oliver is being treated for Chronic inflammation in the mouth. He will have 6 sessions lasting only a few minutes over the course of 3 weeks

Monday, February 1, 2016

The Truth Behind the Tooth

The Truth Behind the Tooth!

Did you know? Practicing proper oral health as a part of your pet's routine health plan can, on average, add up to 2-4 years onto their life! That is 14-28 years in dogs years!!!!!

Dental disease, or periodontal disease,  is one of, if not the most common disease we see in our furry friends. It is estimated that by the time your pet reaches the age of 3 years old they have some form of periodontal disease. For most owners it can be difficult to know if your pet is suffering from periodontal disease. The first sign owners usually notice is halitosis, or bad breath. It is often a common misconception that pets normally have bad breath. This is not the case. If you do notice your pets breath becoming unbearable, there is a good chance that they are suffering from periodontal disease. The foul smell comes from bacteria that becomes trapped under to gum line.

Periodontal disease is classified into 4 stages. 

Stage 1 - Gingivitis
As the bacteria starts to multiply, the gums start to become inflamed and swollen (a.k.a. gingivitis) and we get the beginning of plaque build up. We are now at stage 1 periodontal disease. Treatment is key at this stage because you can actually reverse the disease at this point. Treatment involves brushing teeth at home, providing your dog with dental chews and of course, prophylactic cleanings with dental x-rays at your veterinarian's office. If no treatment is provided, the periodontal disease with advance to stage 2.

Stage 2 - Early Periodontitis
At stage 2 the bacteria continues to increase causing the entire gum to become inflamed. The mouth is becoming painful and the toxins released from the bacteria give off a foul odor. Plaque and tarter continue to build up and the ligament attaching the tooth to the underlying bone starts to loosen. If your pet is at a stage 2 there is a good chance they will need a few surgical extractions. Surgical extractions increase the price of a prophylactic cleaning immensely. This is because oral surgery is involve which is much more technically challenging. 

Stage 3 - Moderate Periodontitis
By stage 3 owners are definitely able to smell an odor from their dogs mouth. The gums are now cherry red and extremely irritated to the point they may bleed. Subtle changes can be seen in behavior and eating habits as well. Most people perceive this as their pet "just aging" when in reality it is the periodontal disease that is painful, making it more difficult to eat. The bacteria start to form pockets under the gum line leading to tooth root abscesses. Some teeth are becoming mobile. At this point, several teeth have significant bone changes on dental x-rays which means they need to be surgically extracted. Periodontal disease at this point is often irreversible. 

Stage 4 - Advanced Periodontitis 
As if Stage 1,2 and 3 weren't bad enough, stage 4 gets even worse. There is a large amount of calculus over the teeth and you can start to see a white discharge coming from the gum line indicating a tooth abscess. The bacteria and toxins they release have started to eat away at the bone and the ligament attaching the tooth to the bone is virtually gone. Many of the the teeth have become wiggly and loose. This is most evident on the molars and premolars in the back of the mouth. Pain increases and you may even notice your dog acting tender when eating hard kibble. At stage 4 the periodontal disease does not just affect the mouth but the bacteria now has an easy route to the kidneys, liver and heart causing systemic disease. Unfortunately, a full mouth extraction is the treatment of choice at this point. It is the best way to clear the mouth of infection. 

Here are some helpful tips to help prevent severe periodontal disease...

*It is never too late to start brushing! Make sure tooth paste is made especially for pets. 

*Use dental chews to help prevent build up. But make sure you follow the BBD rule...all chews must be bendable, breakable and/or dentable. Hard bones such as raw hides, antlers and animal bones can actually be more damaging to the teeth instead of protecting them!

*If they don't already do so, ask your veterinarian to exam your pet's teeth at every visit and let you know what stage of dental disease they have. 

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Here is an example of brushing your pet's teeth with a finger brush!

Below is a link to Best Friends Animal Hospital and Greehaven Animal Clinic to watch a short video to give you an overview of what occurs during a dental procedure!
Link to Best Friends Animal Hospital

Link to Greehaven Animal Clinic

Keep Smiling and thanks for reading!

Doc E

Friday, January 29, 2016

The Pet Diet Debacle

The diet Debacle!

There is a large amount of information out there on what is the best diet for our pet's and what we should stay away from. Hopefully through this post I can give you few tips

1.) Now, I know this first statement is not what pet owners want to hear (including myself) but feeding your pet people food is the number one diet mistake owners can make in my opinion. Just like the american population, about 50% of our pet population is overweight or obese. Most of our pets are much small than humans and proportionally need a different diet. Feeding them people food can not only cause them to pack on the pounds but can lead to diarrhea, vomiting, pancreatitis and dental disease. Keeping pets in a healthy weight range will keep their joints feeling better longer, it will be easier for them to breath and decrease other health risks. Quality dog and cat foods are formulated to be well rounded. When feeding quality pets foods there is no need to supplement your pet with human foods and it is important to follow feeding recommendations on the bag. If you have questions on how much your pet should be eating please consult with your veterinarian. 

2.) Prescription Vs. Over the Counter pet foods. As a veterinarian I see prescription diets helping pets in a variety of ways, from preventing urinary stones to keeping liver and kidney values in the normal range. The prescription diets we carry are from reputable food companies that have a long history in the pet food sector, spend millions of dollars on research and follow strict guidelines when sourcing their ingredients and formulating their diets. There is not one company I choose over the other but rather I pick the food that I think will best help a pet with the problem they are having. While I do like prescription diets, pets with no issues can do well on an over the counter product. However, and this is REALLY important to remember, talk with your veterinarian on what over the counter food they would recommend for your pet!!! Many of the over the counter pet foods companies do not follow the same guidelines. Their ingredient sources are not always regulated and their diets are not always as balanced as what label portrays. Some of the companies make good marketing claims about their foods but when those foods are actually analyzed in a lab the label is often wrong or misleading. I encourage pet owners to talk with their veterinarian about the food you are feeding and if they have any recommendations for your pet.  

3.) There are commercials on TV, food ads and internet posts on how grains are bad to feed to our pets. In reality this is NOT true! Grains can be an important part of a pets diet and can provide good sources of protein, beneficial fatty acids, vitamins and minerals. Dogs who are truly allergic to grains such as barley, oats, corn and wheat make up a very small percentage of the dogs that actually suffer from allergies. I do not like to eliminate grains from a pet's diet unless I know for sure it is detrimental to their health. 

4.) By product  and chicken meal does not equal low quality pet foods. By products, such as chicken by products, refer to the internal organs such as liver and kidney. These organs provide key amino acids and vital nutrients in a pet's diet. While byproducts may not sound appetizing to humans, they play a huge role in formulating a balanced diet for a pet. Chicken meal just means the water is removed. This provides a more concentrated source of protein which is healthy for your pet. 

5.)   When a pet food package says "all natural," "organic," "holistic," or even "human grade," it does not mean it is a quality pet food. These terms are, for the most part, marketing gimmicks. They are using pleasing words and fancy labels to try and trick you into thinking that the food is of good quality. 

The following links are to our clinic's website where you can listen to a video which has a good explanation about pet food.

To Greenhaven's Website

To Best Friends' website

I hope this clears some of the misconceptions up. Again if you ahve any questions please contact your veterinarian

Thanks again,
Doc E