FAQ | Pet Care Questions In Gilbert, AZ
1. Is there really a difference?
a. Yes, we believe there is. Our mission statement “Providing Excellence in Medicine and Caring” summarizes what we do. Our staff is kind and caring and work hard to share love with each pet in our care. Our doctors have a deep commitment to the human-animal bond. They provide each pet with the best wellness, prevention and treatment plans that are available. Our patients are treated as individuals in each aspect of their care, from their examination to surgeries; they are monitored and cared for one-on-one (not assembly line). We strive for excellence in giving a comfortable experience and using the best medical equipment from heart monitors, digital X-ray to full in-clinic blood testing. This increases our patients comfort, but equally important it increases their safety. We believe there is a difference because of our excellent standards, training and experience as well as our commitment to assist you in giving your pet-family members a healthy and happy life.
2. My pet needs a vaccination, does he need an exam?
a. Vaccinations are an important part of preventative care to prevent illness. They can protect against serious disease such as Rabies and Parvoenteritis. Vaccinations are biologicals and as such have some potential for side effects or reactions and should never be given without a complete physical exam in a controlled environment. The immunizations are only a portion of complete preventive care and should be given with careful consideration and discussion. This discussion should be with, you the care-giver to review the pet’s risks, health status and illnesses. Also, not all vaccinations are the same. The vaccinations we use are the latest in research and technology and are cared for properly. We feel the upmost responsibility to ensure the vaccines given to your pets are the safest and most current vaccines made and distributed in the Unites States.
3. Does my pet need to have blood testing prior to a surgery being performed?
a. For the safety of your pet, blood testing is run prior to all surgeries even when young. Some pets have genetic or other underlying illness that can only be detected by blood testing and if not detected could put your pet at risk. Blood testing also provides the doctors with baseline levels to determine intravenous fluid therapy and medications required for a comfortable and safe anesthesia.
4. How old does my pet need to be before being spayed or neutered?
a. Most pets can be spayed (ovariohysterectomy) or neutered (castration) from 4-6 months of age. Specifically for dogs, it is important have their ovariohysterectomy before experiencing a heat cycle, which normally occurs between 7-12 months of age, depending on the breed. It is important because they have the same risk of breast cancer as women (1 in 8) if not spayed before their first heat cycle. It is important to discuss the right time to spay with the doctor as not all breeds and pets are the same. There are more health benefits and risks and should to be discussed with the doctor as to make the best decision for your pet.
5. What is heartworm disease and does my dog need to be on year-round prevention?
a. Heartworm disease is caused by a mosquito born parasite that resides in the heart of dogs or cats. It causes severe heart and lung disease and can cause death. It is not transmitted to humans, but dogs and even cats are susceptible to the parasite. It is found all across the United States including Arizona. Since Arizona’s weather is mild and mosquitos can be around all year, preventative care is necessary to prevent this disease year-round.
6. When does my new puppy or kitten need to come in for vaccines?
a. Puppies and kittens need their first examination at 6-8 weeks of age. A wellness plan will be put in place by the doctor after discussion with you and will include a specific vaccine schedule, testing, deworming and any other preventative care. Their wellness plan will be determined based upon their physical exam, history, risks, breed and discussion between you and the doctor.
7. I have heard about Valley Fever, what is it? And is my dog at risk?
a. Valley fever (coccidiomycosis) is a fungal disease caused by a fungal spore in the dirt of the desert. People and dogs (cats can also contract it) are particularly affected. Symptoms of Valley Fever include one or many of the following symptoms: fever, cough, inappetance, lethargy, lameness, seizures, diarrhea, heart disease and others. Valley Fever is treatable, but needs to be diagnosed as soon as any symptoms are seen. It is not transferable from dog to human except possibly from open wounds.
8. Do you offer payment plans?
a. Payment is received by cash, credit card and debit cards. For those in need of extended payment plans we offer CareCredit. This card can be applied for either on line through CareCredit.com or at the hospital.