Shoreline Animal Hospital

860-669-9374 Clinton, Connecticut 06413

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Stress Free Visits at Shoreline Animal Hospital

March 31st, 2016 · Uncategorized

photo (1)There is no question that bringing a pet to the vet for a visit can potentially be stressful for both animals and owners!   Animals can experience stress during the car ride, during handling and holding by unfamiliar people, seeing other patients in the office, and even while being placed on an exam table.  Pet parents get stressed when their animals are stressed, and vice versa.  The doctors and staff at Shoreline Animal Hospital strive to make your pet’s visit as positive as possible. Here are some ways you can help us to reach that goal of making your pet’s visit as stress free as possible.

How do I know if my pet is stressed? There are many behavioral signs of stress you can look for.  Many cats will try to hide, or tremble; some will growl, scratch or swat.  In extreme cases, cats may even begin to pant.  Dogs may pant, salivate, try to hide, refuse treats, whine, tremble, lick their lips and yawn.  Being aware of these signs of stress in your pet will help you respond to their behaviors appropriately.

So what can you do?  Stress free visits start at home, and there are things you can do to prepare for your visit.  For cats, leave the carrier out for a few days prior to your appointment so he  can explore and become familiar with it.  When your cat goes into the carrier on his own, reward him with treats.  You can even feed him in the carrier to make it more appealing. When it’s time for your cat to go the veterinarian put his favorite toy or blanket in the carrier. If he is still stressed, a pheromone collar or spray may also help.  In the car, the carrier should be covered with a towel and placed in the back seat facing forward.  Play calming music while driving.  Once you arrive at the office, hold the carrier level and steady with both hands while carrying it.  The staff will bring you into an exam room as soon as possible so your cat can be let out of the carrier to explore the room. We use pheromone diffusers in our exam rooms that slowly release a substance that helps the cat feel as if it is in a familiar environment.

Your dog could have a blanket or bed at home that is their “calm down” spot where they go to relax and lay down. Your dog will associate this item with being calm and it can be brought to the appointment to help make your dog more comfortable. You can also bring her favorite treats! We recommend bringing your dog to her visit hungry so feeding those treats will be effective.  For dogs that have anxiety about the car, practice taking short car trips to a place she enjoys. It might help to make at trip to Shoreline Animal Hospital just to visit, be weighed or get some treats from our staff members.  When your dog is here for her exam, we use a pheromone diffuser in the room, treats as positive reinforcement and minimal restraint to make the experience a positive one. We will also examine your dog on the floor if she seems nervous on the exam table.

If at any point during the visit we feel your pet is becoming too stressed; we may offer to reschedule the appointment for a different day to minimize the number of procedures done at a time,  or  prescribe an anti anxiety medication so the next visit can go as smoothly as possible.  We also have pheromone sprays, collars and diffusers available for sale.  At Shoreline Animal Hospital our goal is to make every visit stress free for both you and your pet!

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February is Dental Health Month at Shoreline Animal Hospital in Clinton, Connecticut

February 2nd, 2016 · Uncategorized

post_image_bad_breath3It’s that time of year again at Shoreline Animal Hospital in Clinton, Connecticut to schedule your pet’s exam with Dr. Julie Berman and Dr. Michelle West to see if your pet’s teeth need some extra attention. Dental disease is the most common disease among dogs and cats, affecting 78% of dogs and 68% of cats over the age of three. Although most dogs and cats will develop some level of dental disease, small breed dogs are more prone to developing periodontal disease than larger breeds.  Small breed dogs also tend to develop signs of dental disease at a younger age.

Many owners notice that their pet has bad breath, called halitosis, which almost always indicates a problem with their teeth and/or gums.  Delayed treatment results in gradual worsening of the condition and sometimes chronic pain for the pet.  Dental and gum disease can also contribute to more severe medical conditions like heart disease or kidney disease. The challenge most pet owners face is that many dental issues are hard to spot such as fractured teeth, oral tumors or gingivitis. Most owners do not examine their pet’s teeth regularly for a variety of reasons.  Therefore, a thorough oral examination by your veterinarian at least once a year is critical to maintaining a healthy mouth.

Early preventative measures, such as at home care and in hospital dental cleanings will help reduce the frequency and severity of dental disease later in life. At Shoreline Animal Hospital, Dr. Julie Berman and Dr. Michelle West will perform a comprehensive examination of your pet’s teeth and gums. Just like when you visit your dentist, we use special tools to remove tartar from below the gum line and smooth the surface of each tooth to prevent tartar buildup.

Keeping your pet healthy from toe to tooth shows the world how much you love them. The best way to keep your pet in tiptop shape is to schedule your pet’s yearly checkup at Shoreline Animal Hospital.  We are committed to your pet’s well being every step of the way.

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Stress Free Holidays at Shoreline Animal Hospital, Clinton, CT

November 25th, 2015 · Uncategorized

The holidays can be stressful for everyone, even our furry friends. At Shoreline Animal Hospital in Clinton, CT; Dr. Julie Berman and Dr. Michelle West have solutions for a more relaxing holiday for the whole family. If you are hosting holiday events at your house some pets may get stressed out with the increased foot traffic. A few of the more common stress signs to look for in dogs are panting, trembling, whining, yawning, pacing, hyper salivation, restlessness and hiding.0722141423a Some stress signs for cats are urinating outside the litter box, diarrhea, constipation, excessive scratching, aggressive behavior, hiding and crying. Some of these symptoms could also be related to health issues so if you are unsure you can always call the knowledgeable staff at Shoreline Animal Hospital. If your cat or dog gets stressed out by unfamiliar house guests there are a few natural over the counter calming products that we sell at Shoreline Animal Hospital that you can try. We have pheromone collars, sprays, and diffusers for both cats and dogs. The feline products use two different pheromones; one uses the pheromone from the mammary glands and the other uses facial pheromones. The mammary gland pheromones mimic their mother’s pheromones as they nurse and the scent is associated with satisfaction and comfort. When cats rub their face against an item they are marking the spot with their facial pheromones indicating to them that the item is safe. The dog products use the mammary gland pheromones as well. Pheromones can help reduce stress and the smell lets your pet know that the area is safe and puts them in a relaxed state. There are also homeopathic remedies available in a liquid form that can be added to your pet’s food and contains chamomile, ginger and valerian extracts. If your pet has a tendency to hide from strangers you may also want to consider a calming spot or safe room where your pet can go to get away from the commotion. Make sure they have their bed, favorite toys, litter box and plenty of food and water. If these items do not work you can always speak to your veterinarian about anti-anxiety medications. Have a safe and happy holiday!!

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Diabetes Awareness at Shoreline Animal Hospital in Clinton,CT

September 30th, 2015 · Uncategorized

At Shoreline Animal Hospital in Clinton, CT, Dr. West and Dr. Berman diagnose diabetes on a regular basis in both cats and dogs.  Although there is no single cause of diabetes, prevention and early diagnosis are critical.  Annual exams, yearly blood work including a urinalysis and healthy weight management all play important roles.  The doctors and staff at Shoreline Animal Hospital are committed to educating clients about diabetes prevention, diagnosis and management so that patients can live long healthy lives.

Pet Portal

What is diabetes mellitus?

Diabetes is an endocrine disorder caused by a deficiency of insulin. Insulin is a hormone needed by the body to transport glucose (sugar) out of the bloodstream and into energy producing cells. Insulin deficiency impairs the ability of tissues to use carbohydrates, fats and proteins.  Diabetic animals are left with too much glucose in the bloodstream. Without treatment, liver and kidney damage can occur.

What can cause diabetes?

Possible causes of the development of diabetes include: genetic predisposition, chronic pancreatitis, obesity, hormonal abnormalities, endocrine disease (including Cushing’s disease), infections, and certain medications (including corticosteroids)

What are some of the clinical signs?

Excessive thirst, Excessive urination, Weight Loss, Increased hunger, Weakness, Some cats may walk flat footed in the rear limbs (plantigrade stance)

Can my pet be tested for diabetes?

Diabetes can be confirmed by the presence of high blood glucose levels and/or glucose in urine. If you believe your pet is showing signs of diabetes, a simple blood test can be performed in our office. Routine blood work can also screen for other diseases, such as kidney and liver disease, making it a beneficial part of your pet’s annual exam.

Complications with diabetes:

Hypoglycemia: This can occur if too much insulin is administered. Signs include: lethargy, uncoordinated gait and seizures. If your pet becomes hypoglycemic contact the hospital immediately. As an emergency treatment, you can administer

r karo syrup or honey by rubbing it on your pet’s gums.

Ketoacidosis: Unregulated diabetes over long periods of time can lead to a production of ketone bodies which causes pH and electrolyte imbalances in the blood. Ketoacidosis is a life threatening emergency. Signs of ketoacidosis include: vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, dehydration, weakness and shock.

Bladder infections: Your diabetic pet will be more prone to bladder infections. A urine sample should be checked routinely. This can be done in our hospital. You should monitor your pet for inappropriate urination (ie: urinating in the house, outside of the litter box), frequent urination, and/or straining.

How will I treat my pet’s diabetes?

Unfortunately, there is no cure for diabetes, but it can be managed!  Most pets will receive insulin injections twice a day. These are easy to give and most pets don’t react at all to the very small needle that is used. Periodically, blood glucose levels will need to be monitored throughout the day. This can be done at home, or in our hospital with a very small blood sample taken from a prick to the ear, foot pad or elbow callus. The staff at Shoreline Animal Hospital will give you a detailed step-by-step demonstration on how to administer the insulin and obtain blood glucose readings. We encourage owners to purchase a glucometer because readings done at home are less stressful for the pet, more accurate and more cost effective.  Diet is also a key factor in managing diabetes, especially in cats because they require a high protein diet.  Finally, your diabetic pet’s weight must be managed.  Obesity is a risk factor for developing diabetes and can also make it more difficult to manage.

Together with a healthy diet, regular preventative care and careful observation, we can work to prevent diabetes or manage it if your pet is diagnosed.

If you have any questions regarding your pet’s health,  please contact us at 860-669-9374.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Latest Flea and Tick Products available at Shoreline Animal Hospital in Clinton,CT

March 16th, 2015 · Uncategorized

With flea and tick season upon us, Shoreline Animal Hospital  has a few questions for you. Does your dog have sensitive skin?  Is it difficult to apply topical flea and tick products?  Does your cat  run and hide when he sees you coming with that tube of topical?   Well Dr. Michelle West and Dr. Julie Berman have several convenient alternatives for you to prevent and treat these annoying parasites.

We are excited to introduce the first ever ORAL  flea and tick product for dogs-  NexGard; made by Merial (the makers of Frontline Plus and Heartgard).  It is a tasty, soft, beef flavored chew for dogs that kills fleas and ticks.  NexGard is given once a month  and can be given at the same time as monthly heartworm prevention.   Fleas and ticks are a growing problem on the CT shoreline and can lead to serious diseases and medical conditions like flea allergy dermatitis, tapeworms, Lyme disease, Ehrlichiosis, and Anaplasma to name a few.  They are found in the most common places like backyards, fence lines, tall grass, wooded areas and are also infesting  local wildlife.  So far our clients using NexGard for their dogs have not been having any problems with ticks or fleas and the dogs seem to love the chewable tablet!  To top it off, Merial is offering rebates of up to $50 on the purchase of a combination of flea, tick and heartworm products and if you buy a 6 pack of NexGard, you will get one more dose free. Call our office or stop in to speak to one of our staff about the money-saving details.

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NexGard- a new chewable flea and tick preventative for dogs now available at Shoreline Animal Hospital, Clinton, CT

Our clients are also giving us excellent feedback on the Seresto collar, which is available for both cats and dogs. With the Seresto collar there is no need to remember monthly applications because it provides 8 months of continuous protection against fleas and ticks.  It’s also water proof so there is no need to remove it before swimming or bathing.  This collar is  a whole new technology with continuous diffusion of the active ingredient, unlike the flea collars of years ago that never worked well.  This one is great and very cost effective too!  And there is a valuable $15 manufacturer’s rebate available for a limited time on this product.

We also still carry and recommend monthly topicals such as K9 Advantix II for dogs, Advantage Multi for cats and Frontline Plus for both dogs and cats.   K9 Advantix II  is applied monthly and repels and kills fleas, ticks and mosquitos.  Advantage Multi for cats is also applied monthly and kills fleas and can also prevent roundworms, hookworms and heartworms.

Shoreline Animal Hospital offers some great veterinary exclusive discounts and rebates,  so if you have any questions, please stop by or call our office and we would be more then happy to answer any of your questions.  Our staff can make the best recommendation for your pets based on their individual medical history, environment and lifestyle.  Remember the best way to prevent infestation and disease  is to make sure all the pets in your house are treated with a flea and tick preventative every month– even pets that spend most or all of their time indoors.

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