Friday, July 11, 2014

We have recently been asked by a number of people what they should do in preparation for leaving their dogs at the kennel while they go on vacation. I thought I'd put together a few pointers to help everyone with this prep.

- Make sure the kennel or person taking care of your pets has your contact information. This is in case something were to happen and they need to get in touch with you.

- Let your veterinarian know who you are leaving your pets with so that if this person calls, there are no surprises. As well, it is important to let your vet know what you would like done should an emergency arise. Having someone who can make medical decisions while you are away is also important.

- If going to a kennel, take some things such as a towel and toys that smell like home. It will go a long way to helping your pet feel settled more quickly.

- Take your pet's food to the kennel. We don't want upset tummy's while you are away.

- A responsible kennel will also want proof of current vaccinations.

Another reason why I wanted to chat about these points is because we had a case where because we knew the owners
were away, we were able to move rather quickly on a medical case. The dogs were being cared for in their home by one of my staff members. She noticed that the oldest dog wasn't acting like herself when she got home one night and gave me a quick call to give me a heads up. Since she wasn't doing much better the next morning, she brought her in. I discovered that the dog had a heart condition that had not been heard a few months prior during her regular physical exam. I know the owners quite well and knew they would want a full work up done on their beloved girl. I was able to get her in to see the specialist and kept the owners in the loop. Luckily they were returning in a couple days so they were able to come home in a timely manner to do the follow up with the specialist. In this case, if we hadn't been able to get in touch with the owners or have instructions on what we could do in case of emergency, the outcome would not have been positive.

By having your "ducks in a row", everyone can have a wonderful and relaxing vacation!

Friday, May 2, 2014

Yet more dental radiographs!

I recently had a large breed dog come in for his annual wellness exam and vaccinations. Lovely senior boy to work on. One of the first things I noticed when I looked in his mouth was that he was missing his 108 tooth. That is the big fat molar that is also known as the carnaissal tooth. All I could see were two exposed roots. We did bloodwork and scheduled dental surgery.

Here are the two roots we saw at the beginning of the dental surgery.

Here's our first radiograph showing the two roots with significant root loss from abscesses.

This is why we always want to check the area we have removed roots from. I had to go digging under the gum line to access this root. It was just hanging out like there wasn't a problem.

Here's the mouth once we were done. For those of you who read my blogs over breakfast, there is a minimal amount of blood for you to deal with!

Added this picture cause I think it is a pretty cool way to compare the two radiographs. Thank you Kelly, for making this happen.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Yes Mom, I am procrastinating

So, there gets to be a point in the day when I just can't seem to concentrate when studying anymore. I was sitting on the couch and thinking about how cool it would be to make a fort out of all my books on behaviour.

For any vets or vet students, this book should be considered the bible of all the behaviour books. I reach for it almost every day. When in doubt, this book by Dr. Karen Overall has the answers.

These are some excellent books that I think everyone would benefit from reading. The newest one in the bunch is Decoding Your Dog (fourth from the bottom). All of these are available on Amazon.

Ok, so the lack of maturity won out!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Big Rock Elementary School Celebrity Reader

I got to be a celebrity at the Big Rock Elementary School here in Okotoks this past week. I'm not going to lie, I did truly feel like a star complete with my own paparazzi!!! In two days, I went to seven classes (Grades 2 through 6). We have some great kids here in this town. The questions I got really made me think and it was so much fun. Plus, I got to read sections from "The Hobbit" that is one of my favorite books to the older kids and "Walter the Farting Dog" to the younger kids.

Some of the pictures look fairly normal. This one just looks like I'm talking to a keen class of students.

I am a visual person so regardless of what this may look like, I am trying to show what a foreign body looked like on a radiograph. Honest!

I was told by someone, who shall remain nameless, that I have helicopter arms. I just tend to get animated talking about veterinary medicine.

Madly signing my name so I could go to the next class. This is where having the notorious doctor's writing paid off.

I really want to thank everyone at the Big Rock Elementary School for giving me this opportunity to have so much! The teachers for for letting me into their classrooms (to talk to students who were trapped listening to me chatter on). The volunteers who got me to the different classrooms on time and of course, the students. Never stop asking questions!!!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

I am not stalking Dr. Karen Overall!!!

I am just making this statement as my staff think I am. Hey, when the goddess of veterinary animal behaviour sends you an email asking you to help out with a Masterclass at the NAVC Conference,you tend to go. (Bonus was going to Orlando during our Canadian winter!!) It was a low-stress handling lab and boy, was it fun!!! The two board certified veterinary behaviourists running the course were Dr. Karen Overall and Dr. Martin Godbout (a Canadian!) and a great trainer, Pat Miller. There were six of us who were asked to help out during the full day seminar. Three of us were behaviour residents and the other vets had a lot of experience in behaviour from Dr. Overall's course at the NAVC Institute. There were 50 students accepted into the class and we were hopping all day. We were either presenting, helping the students with their training or doing demonstrations (My kong filler can basically blew up while I was demonstrating how to properly fit a Gentle Leader. Luckily the dog thought it was great!).

We are watching a group give a demonstration on how they taught the cat to lay on its back for an ultrasound (the things you can do with baby food as a treat!)

From left to right: Dr. Karen Overall, Dr. Martin Godbout and Pat Miller. Watching the demonstrations of the dogs at the end of the seminar. Only one was left standing.

Pierrette, Colleen and I. Its a small world cause it turns out that Colleen's sister is a client of mine. I wish I could have seen my face when Colleen said she knew exactly where Okotoks was even though she is doing her behaviour residency in Ottawa.

Martin is like the big brother I never had.

Fiia and Steve are also part of what we are starting to call "the tribe". A group of veterinarians who are just crazy about behaviour and figuring out how to make our pets' lives easier whether at the veterinary clinic, home or out in public.

Other than my mother, this woman has had such an incredible impact on my life and how I practice veterinary medicine. Dr. Overall is a complete inspiration.