Ah, Thanksgiving. Time for coziness and merriment, neighborly greetings and pie, winter sweaters and—what? The dog peed on the rug? Holiday time is full of love and laughs, but do you have your best pet friend’s needs in mind? Packing up the family can mean something entirely different when your dog, cat, or iguana is along for the ride! Here are some super tips to take with you this Thanksgiving and holiday season!
Several weeks before your trip visit your veterinarian to make sure your pet is healthy for travel and up-to-date on all vaccinations. Inquire if there are any additional vaccinations recommended based on where you’re headed.
Before you leave home, locate the nearest veterinarian or 24-hour emergency hospital in the town or area where you’ll be staying. Save the number to your phone. Hopefully you won’t need to visit, but being prepared in case of an emergency is definitely the way to go.
Make sure your pet is wearing a collar and current ID tags and has a microchip. Make and attach a temporary ID tag with the information of the place you’re staying as well. Make sure the info on it is current.
Pack up your pet’s favorite toy, blanket, and bed to keep him surrounded by familiar items while away from home. Don’t forget food, litter, litter box, bowls, water, treats, and any other things that are part of your pet’s regular routine.
If your pet is on any medication bring enough for a few extra days as well as a prescription in case you need a refill.
Make frequent rest stops to prevent accidents from occurring in the car. Remember to always keep your pet on leash when exiting your vehicle.
Do not leave your animal in a parked car, even with the windows cracked. Temperatures inside a car can soar to well over 100 degrees in less than 10 minutes—even on cooler-feeling days. This places your pet at risk for heatstroke and possibly death.
If you are travelling across state lines bring a copy of your pet’s medical records, specifically a rabies vaccination record. Some states require proof of vaccination at certain crossings.
During your pit stops be sure to provide your pet with some fresh water to wet their whistle. Occasionally traveling can upset your pet's stomach. Take along ice cubes, which are easier on your pet than large amounts of water.
Watch the food intake. It is recommended that you keep feeding to a minimum during travel. Be sure to feed them their regular pet food and resist the temptation to give them some of your fast food burger or fries (that never has a good ending!). Skip the car food. No pizza crusts or ice cream. Your pet may be tempted with table food while you’re visiting, so make sure he stays on his regular diet.
No heads out the window! Although many pets find that sticking their head out the window is the best part of the road trip, it's not safe. Your pet can easily be injured by flying debris. This should go without saying, but NEVER travel with a pet in the back of a pickup truck. Some states have laws restricting such transport and it is always dangerous—this holiday season some states are fining up to $1,000 for drivers with pets on their laps. Keep pets safely restrained inside, in a carrier, or in an area away from you, and with a seat belt if possible. This is for your safety as well as theirs.
If you're flying, research your airline. Some major airlines will now recognize your four-legged traveler. If you are flying to for the holiday, find out your airline's policy!
Enjoying your stay!
When you and your pet arrive, introduce him slowly to any other pets—after he has had a chance to adjust. For cats, keep yours in a separate room—perhaps where you are sleeping—for a few hours, and then slowly let him see the other pets in the house. When introducing dogs, make sure yours is on a leash and give them outdoor meeting space so all parties have room to check each other out.
Spend extra time with your pet before getting on with the party! Make sure he's had a chance to go to the bathroom outside before things get too exciting. Set up his bed, blanket, or toys in a place that he can call his own and then spend a few minutes in that space with him. Once he's had time to be with you and the familiar things you've brought along he'll be ready to go around the rest of the house and see what's going on. Take him exploring in a calm manner, and introduce him all the new people!
Check in with your hosts! Knowing how the people in house are doing can make a huge difference in keeping everything calm and happy. Ask about any pertinent restrictions like new furniture or rooms that are off limits. Make sure the hosts know that you want to help with anything that will make it easier to have your pet around. Ask if there's anything you can bring in advance (like extra bed sheets, blankets, or cleaning supplies) that will help be respectful and appreciative of being in their home.
Let family members, friends, and guests know if your pet has any behavioral issues, diet restrictions, medical conditions, etc., so everyone will know how to get along with him best. You want to create an environment where everyone can be informed and comfortable!
Do not feed your pets human food. There are many holiday foods, including fatty meats, gravies, poultry skin, bones, chocolate, coffee, and alcohol that can cause illnesses from vomiting, diarrhea and other toxic reactions. In large doses onions, grapes, and raisins are also toxic to your pet.
Take your dog on regular walks. This gives him a break from his new surroundings and is a way to work in some exercise. It will help reduce stress and allow you to both have some down time.
Do not leave your pet alone in the house with other guests unless you feel it is truly safe and comfortable for all. When your pet is away from you in a strange, new place, his behavior can change. You both want to be invited back next year!
Keep your pets indoors during extremely cold weather. Dogs and cats can develop a very low body temperature (hypothermia) and frost bite just like we can! Pets should not be kept outside for prolonged periods and should be brought in when the weather dips below 40F. When the weather falls below 20F it’s best for pets to stay inside.
Know when to leave your pets at home. Our pets are family, and the thought of leaving them behind is often heartbreaking. But as much as we all love to have the whole family together, there are times when it's better—and safer—to leave them in good care elsewhere. If your travel means they'll be spending the whole time cooped up in a hotel room or off-limits somewhere in the house, or if your pet is antisocial, aggressive, anxious, or has a condition that makes them fragile, then everyone—especially your pet—will be happier staying at home.
VESCONE wishes you all happy, healthy, and safe Thanksgiving travel. And we'll be open 24/7 for you and your guests if you have any questions or problems! Give us a call at 781-684-8387 if there's anything we can do. Warm wishes for a fantastic holiday!
Hurricane Sandy is currently making its way up the east coast and meteorologists predict that Boston will be seeing the impact today and throughout the early part of this week. The news and other safety advisory sources tell us to stock up on water and canned goods, flashlights and batteries, blankets and sweaters. But how do we prepare to leave our homes—or stay in them safely—with equal regard to our pets’ safety?
Here are the recommended steps to ensure safety for your whole family—pets included.
Rule number one: If it isn't safe for you, it isn't safe for your pet. Do not expect to be able to leave your home—even for a short time—and return for your pet. Natural disaster happens fast! While it may look “fine” outside, It may not be, and you may be confined to whatever location you have departed to. Always take your pet with you where ever you need to go!
Rule number two: Evacuate early. Do not “wait it out.” Evacuations are for everyone’s safety. If the situation requires you to leave you home, be proactive. Leaving before conditions become stressful and/or dangerous for you and your pet helps get everyone through the situation with less trauma and panic.
Rule number three: Plan and plan early. Think through what you need, where you need to go, and with whom you need to communicate about what’s happening. The faster and more thoroughly you develop a plan, the easier it will be to get you and your pet through the emergency.
ID for your pets: make sure that your cat or dog is wearing a collar and identification that is up to date and visible at all times. Put your cell phone and a friend’s number on your pet's tag. You can make an additional temporary tag with information that may not be on your pet’s primary tag by cutting a tag-sized piece of cardboard, writing the information on it, and wrapping it with clear tape. Additionally, microchipping your pet can be indispensible in emergency situations when pets and owners are separated. If your pet is not microchipped, consider scheduling an appointment to do so for the future. Your Veterinarian—or any local Veterinarian—or a local shelter can do this for you. This is a critical tool for reuniting separated pets and owners.
Pet evacuation supplies: Stock up and pack away. Collect non-perishables ahead of time and have everything ready to go in a “GO” bag that you can access at a moment's notice. Dry pet food should be stored in air-tight containers and refreshed every six months. Keep a list of necessary items in the bag to refer to along with any medications needed. If you live in a high risk area, have this bag ready and stored in the car in advance. If you are able to stay home, keep these items in a place that is water- and wind-proof. This bag should include:
Food and water for five days for each pet. Bring extra water for rinsing the bowls and cleaning—cleaning water can be reused.
Cat litter box, litter, litter scoop, and garbage bags to collect all pets' waste.
Sturdy leashes, harnesses, and carriers to transport pets safely and to ensure that they can not escape. Carriers should be large enough to allow your pet to stand comfortably, turn around, and lie down. It is helpful—but not critical—to have some form of bedding, spray cleaner, paper towels, trash bags, feed bowls, and toys.
Current photo and description of your pet and you with your pet to help others identify them in the event of a separation.
A list of your pet’s medications, vaccine history, medical conditions, feeding information, any behavior issues, and name/number of your Veterinarian.
If a shelter or hotel is not feasible, consider staying with a friend or relative or have your pet boarded with a Veterinarian or at a nearby kennel.
If you choose to stay home with your pets or are unable to evacuate, stay in a safe location. A space that is free of small hiding places or dangerous substances or equipment will alleviate any additional conflicts. A comfortable and safe space is the best place to be for both of you. Make sure to bring the “GO” bag items you’ve prepared.
Listen to the radio for condition updates—do NOT go outside to see for yourself. Stay inside and don’t allow your pet outside the safe room/area of your home. You do not know the extent of impact the disaster conditions have caused.
Keep dogs on leashes and cats in carriers inside the house. Disaster of any kind can be disorienting and stressful. It is very important to have control of your pet and to restrict any opportunity for more chaos or damage.
Be patient with your pets after the disaster has passed. Keep them close to you while you are cleaning up and getting your home back to normal. You both will be shaken from the experience, so it is important to take things one at a time to reduce shock and feel in control.
By: Dr. Andrew Ayre
Izzi's True Emergency Room Story:
Izzi is a very distinguished 11 year old neutered male Portuguese Water Dog who had been with family friends for the past week. When Izzi came home the owners noticed he was slower than usual and had a decreased appetite so they brought him to their family veterinarian at Chestnut Street Animal Hospital.
His bloodwork showed a low red blood cell count (anemia) and his abdominal radiographs (x-rays) showed abnormal fluid is the space around his kidneys. After the veterinarian asked about possible toxins, the owners asked the friends who found an open and eaten box of rat poison! Due to the anti-coagulating effects of the rat toxin, Izzi was unable to clot his blood normally and started to bleed around his kidneys. He was sent to VESCONE through our emergency room by his veterinarian.
He needed a total of two blood plasma transfusions to replace his non-working coagulation factors. Fortunately he responded well to his treatments and supportive care. On the third day of hospitalization he was discharge back into the care of his loving owners. Due to their astute observations and quick action, what could have been a tragic story ended very happily!
What’s the story with rat poison?
These products are also called “rodenticides” and there are two main methods with which they work. The mechanism seriously affects the nervous system and brain resulting in a progression from seizures to coma and/or death. However the more common type of rodenticide sold to homeowners works by destroying the body’s ability to clot blood normally (anticoagulant rodenticide). This can result in bleeding from anywhere in the body. If you suspect your pet has eaten rat or mouse bait and you have the box, bring it with you! This can be life saving as emergency clinics treat the two rodenticide mechanisms in very different ways.
What will I see with anticoagulant rodenticides?
This depends on the individual. The obvious signs of rat bait toxin are with patients that ate something, are vomiting bright green stomach contents (as the most common rat baits are bright blue-green) and have evidence of external or internal bleeding. However there is a large spectrum of clinical signs. For some patients we do not see any major external abnormalities until it is too late and they are beyond our abilities to help. Most animals start with very mild signs, like Izzi, such as slight lethargy/tiredness or less interest in food than normal. As the effects of the toxin progress we begin to see signs consistent with bleeding into areas around the body. These include nose bleeds, coughing up blood or having difficulty breathing, bloody urine or diarrhea, limping (blood in the joints), blood in the eyes, or bruising of the skin (commonly groin and belly) or gums.
If my pet ate rat poison, what’s the best and worse case scenario?
Worst case scenario is that your pet has bleed large amounts already and is very sick. A patient in this situation will require multiple transfusions (both red blood due to bleeding and blood plasma for coagulation factors) as well as multiple days of hospitalization. Unfortunately there are situations where despite giving everything we can, the patient still succumbs to the toxin and passes away. Therefore quick identification and aggressive treatment is the center of treatment for this toxin. Best case scenario is that the patient isn’t clinical for the toxin yet and we start therapies to help their coagulation factors work more efficiently and they are never sick and do not need hospitalization. They generally need initial bloodwork, 3-4 weeks of daily medication and recheck bloodwork. And, of course there is a whole spectrum of possibilities between these two scenerios.
When do I need to seek veterinary help?
If you even suspect your animal may have been exposed to a rodenticide you should have them evaluated by a veterinarian and some basic bloodwork performed. There is a medication that can be given to help slow or stop clinical signs. The longer the pet is left without treatment, to more likely they are to bleed and become life-threateningly sick.
If you or someone you know believes that their animal is in need of immediate medical attention, please call VESCONE at 781.684.8387.
We are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Recently at our hospital we have been seen many cases that require blood transfusions. The most common reason to give a blood transfusion is a low number of red blood cells (RBCs) which are responsible for transporting oxygen from the lungs to body tissues. RBCs are measured as a percentage of the entire blood volume (normally 35-50%). If this value is very low we can give them blood from another animal of the same species to help get oxygen to their tissues while their body heals. The blood can’t just come from any animal; a rigorous screening is necessary to make sure the blood transfusion does not cause problems in the patient’s body.
Dumpling is a 2 year old female spayed English Bulldog that was hit by a car after she accidently slipped out of a loose collar. She ran across the street and was struck by an SUV travelling fast down the street. She was in pain, breathing rapidly and actively bleeding from a deep wound to her left thigh. The owners reported that she had soaked 2 whole bath towels with blood on the way over. She was in and out of consciousness and very critical. Her RBC value was 22%, a very critical level. She needed blood! She had lost a very large amount of blood and was continuing to hemorrhage; she was breathing rapidly trying to get more oxygen to her tissues; she was in shock – all great reasons for a blood transfusion. But what do we do now? Where do we get this blood from? How do you chose who gives the blood? How is this blood given? How much blood do they need?
Where do hospitals get blood?
Most emergency hospitals, including VESCONE, have a blood stock on hand for times of need. This blood is obtained through commercial supply companies or from a list of blood donors that are patients of the hospital. Blood donors are young, healthy animals above a certain weight that have undergone a thorough veterinary assessment, full blood work and infectious disease screening.
What are the different blood types?
Prior to Dumpling’s blood transfusion we had to make sure that she was going to accept her transfusion. Just like with humans, animals have blood types. “Blood type” just refers to proteins on the surface of the red blood cell to which the immune system reacts. If you give a patient a transfusion of the wrong blood type they may react to that blood as “abnormal” or an “invader” and try to destroy it causing a host of problems including the possibility of anaphylactic shock and death. Therefore the first important step is to know the blood type of the donor (the healthy animal) and recipient (Dumpling, who was hit by a car). Dumpling was blood type DEA 1.1. Dogs have two main blood types, DEA 1.1 and DEA 1.2 and as more research is performed we are finding additional blood types (DEA 1.3 through DEA 1.7) however these additional types do not seem to be important when giving blood transfusions. (Cats have 3 blood types, A, B and AB) Luckily for Dumpling the two stored blood bags from a previous donors were also DEA 1.1. Which one do we use?
How do you make sure the blood is a match?
Even if the two animals are the same blood type, sometimes their immune system will still react to the new RBCs as “abnormal.” Prior to any transfusion, in addition to making sure the blood types are the same, we have to make sure that the blood we are going to give isn’t going to cause a problem in the specific patient. This process is called “cross-matching” when we place the donor and recipients blood together in a test tube to make sure that it doesn’t react abnormally. Dumpling’s blood was compatible with the first donor that was tested, so now we could go forward with a transfusion.
How is the blood given?
Blood is given just like any fluid, injected through a tube into the vein. Blood products are typically given slowly over 4 hours. During this process the patients are still monitored every 30 minutes to ensure that they are not reacting to the new blood.
How did our sample case react?
Luckily for Dumpling, the bleeding had slowed down enough and she responded well to her transfusion. She overcame many hurdles during her hospital stay including surgery to fix her leg and multiple important tests to make sure she did not have any other complications after being struck by a moving vehicle. Surprisingly, she was otherwise unscathed and after multiple days of hospitalization and supportive care, pain control and blood monitoring she was discharged from the hospital.
There are many reasons for giving a blood transfusion and unfortunately they don’t all have the same happy outcome. Some patients continue to lose blood and need multiple transfusions. Some, despite the best efforts that medicine has to offer, succumb to their underlying disease. For all of these patients, the use of blood transfusion has proved invaluable to their care and is an integral part of their therapy, keeping them alive and their tissues oxygenated so that healing and recovery can occur.
Meet Dr. Andrew Ayre, VESCONE's newest Emergency and Critical Care Staff Doctor. Dr. Ayre hails from the New York tri-state area and is a new transplant to Boston! Learn more about our newest doctor below and he welcomes any suggestions of dog friendly places in Boston to visit!
What interested you in becoming a veterinarian?
I have always been fascinated with animals, how they interact with each other as well as with people. I became interested in their biology during high school and proactively sought to be a doctor of veterinary medicine since then as I felt this was the best way I could help. I love what I do and can’t imagine a better way to spend my time then helping people through the treatments of their beloved pets… and getting to play with a few along the way too! J
Why were you drawn to Emergency and Critical Care?
During my internship I found that the variety of cases and intensity of medicine was a right fit for me with emergency medicine. I found that I enjoyed identifying with pet owners in crisis and guiding them through the necessary steps to give their animals the treatments they needed.
You mentioned you worked in an exotic species show for kids, what are you favorite varieties of exotic species?
This is a hard question because the reason that I enjoy exotics is for the variety of species that this area of veterinary medicine has to offer. However if I were to choose a type of species I would say furry pocket pets – rabbits, rodents etc. I did have the wonderful experience of owning a rat with recurring oral abscesses since the pet store could not sell her. That experience gave me a fondness for rats and showed me the unique personality that rats can have and the type of relationship that an owner can have with them.
Are you excited about living near Boston? What things are you interested in seeing?
I am very excited, everybody I spoke to before coming only had good things to say and that “You are going to love it.” So it has to live up to some pretty high expectations! I am interesting in exploring “tourist Boston” to see all of the sights but I also really enjoy outdoor activities with my adolescent Shepard mix, Nala. I would love to find some good hiking and dog-friendly beaches/boardwalks, etc. Any suggestions?
Share with us your philosophy about being a vet? What motivates you to help animals?
I believe in the noble profession of veterinary medicine and the important role that is plays in our society – from companion animals to protecting the food supply to aiding endangered species. My role in companion animals is to protect the human-animal bond and help to promote health so that this bond can be as long and create as much happiness as possible. Dealing with disease and death, as we must being veterinarians, is the biggest challenge to overcome and I think guiding pet owners through these times of grief and suffering are just as important as the health of their pets. I want to go beyond the expectations of my clients as a healer of animals to be a leader in the community who listens to owners to provide a higher level of understanding and care.
Today the Boston area is supposed to hit around 100 degrees F. Do you know how to prevent heat stroke in your pets? Are your regular activities putting your pet at risk?
We asked VESCONE's Veterinarians to give us some tips on how to prevent heat stroke and a trip to see us in the emergency room.
- Never leave your pet in a closed car even with the windows open. Car temps can go over 120 degrees and literally cook your pet from the inside out.
- Do not exercise your pet in hot humid weather when outdoor temps are above 75.
- Make sure your pet has cool water at all times.
- Ensure there is good ventilation indoors where your pet is inside. A hot, closed in room or carrier can also cause a pet to overheat.
- Keep certain breeds indoors: Dogs that have heart disease, respiratory disease such as feline asthma or are brachycephalic or short nosed breeds like a bulldog, pug, Pekinese, or Shi-Tzu.
- You can cool your pet down with a tepid water hose on his body, alcohol on his feet and ears, or towels soaked in water draped over him while on route to a veterinary hospital.
If you or someone you know believes that their animal is in need of immediate medical attention, please call VESCONE at 781.684.8387.
We are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
With the 4th of July around the corner, families are firing up the grill to celebrate. But common cookout food and materials can be deadly for your pets. Dr. Amy Shroff, owner of the Veterinary Emergency and Specialty Center of New England in Waltham shares with you tips on how to keep your pets safe and out of the emergency room this holiday.
Photo Credit: http://www.dog-woodsresort.com/images/pic2.gif
- Heat Stroke – We’ve seen many deadly cases in the hospital recently. On a hot day, do not leave your dog out in the sun or even in the shade if temperatures hit above 80 degrees. Your dog does not perspire like you can and instead pant to cool themselves off. Breeds such as Bulldogs, Shi Tzus, Pugs, Boston Terriers, and Pekinese have a compromised airway and if they pant for too long, can develop swelling of their upper airway. They can get overheated very quickly. If their internal body temperature climbs above 104-105, it can be fatal.
- Corn cobs – These are made of fibrous plant material or cellulose and do not digest in the GI tracts of dogs. When swallowed whole, it is almost guaranteed that they may need to be removed surgically as they get lodged in the intestines. Don’t let your dog get in your post barbeque garbage!
- Skewers - When these are swallowed, they can also be lodged in the intestine or poke right through the esophagus or stomach and lodge in the chest cavity or a lung. This can lead to terrible infections and trauma if swallowed, so keep an eye on that garbage! And don’t give any to your dog to chew!
- Garbage ingestion –Any garbage that has been sitting out for a while in the heat can harbor lots of toxins. In addition, eating lots of fatty human foods can set dogs up for gastroenteritis and pancreatitis or inflammation of the GI tract and can be very dangerous. So no trash can surfing for that leftover hot dog or potato salad.
- Charcoal briquettes – Clients often ask us if these are harmful. If they contain lighter fluid or other petroleum products, they can upset their GI tracts. If it is plan charcoal, unless they eat a whole one which can be lodged in their intestine, it will not harm them to eat it. But let’s keep them out of sight just in case!
- Fireworks – Dogs in general do not like loud noises because their ears are much more sensitive than ours. It can cause them to get very anxious and stressed from the noise. Hot remnants of sparklers or firecrackers can also be painful and dangerous if stepped on. If you are going to set off some fireworks legally, keep your dog indoors.
- Insect stings – Since we share the outdoors with bees, wasps and other stinging insects, it is best to stay clear of any nests or areas where anyone can be stung. Dogs can have allergic reactions similar to humans that don’t present right away. If your dog does get stung, call your veterinarian or your local veterinary emergency room immediately.
- Sunburn – Dogs can get sunburned especially if they have pink or less pigmented skin. I recommend keeping them in the shade, but if they are out and the weather is cool but sunny, a dog specific sunblock is recommended.
By: Dr. Kerrianne Kalbko, Emergency Department Veterinarian
Anubis is a 4 month male Labrador Retriever that presented to VESCONE’s Emergency Department on Sunday May 6, 2012, after jumping from his owner’s balcony. His initial evaluation showed a slightly low blood pressure and that he was reluctant to walk on his right frontleg. Due to his low blood pressure, he was stabilized with fluids. He was also given pain medication for his lameness.
Anubis was admitted to VESCONE’s ICU for monitoring overnight of his heart rate, breathing, and blood pressure. After he was stabilized, he had x-rays taken of his right frontleg. His x-rays showed that part of his humerus, the bone in his shoulder was broken. On Monday, May 7, 2012, Anubis had surgery with Dr. Mary Ann Nieves, one of VESCONE’s surgeons. He recovered well from his surgery and he was discharged from VESCONE on Tuesday, May 8, 2012.
What is High Rise Syndrome:
Trauma, such as being hit by a car, is a common reason for animals presenting to VESCONE for evaluation. Anubis presented with a type of trauma called High-Rise Syndrome. This refers to when a dog or cat jumps or falls from a window, deck, or other structure that is elevated several feet above the ground. A common cause of this syndrome is when pets jump or fall through windows that do not have screens.
What are the injuries?
Pets can suffer varying degrees of injury from their falls. Some pets may only suffer fractures or broken bones in their legs. However others may be very critical from damage to their chest and abdomen or head trauma. Possible chest or abdominal injuries are: broken ribs, bruising to the lungs, a torn diaphragm, bladder rupture, or injury to the liver or spleen.
What should I do?
High-Rise Syndrome is an emergency and all pets suffering from it should be immediately evaluated by a veterinarian. Possible diagnostics that may be recommended are: x-rays of the chest and abdomen to evaluate for any internal injuries and bloodwork to check organ function, electrolytes, red blood cell count, and protein levels. If there is concern about broken bones, additional x-rays will also be recommended.
How can I prevent it?
High-Rise Syndrome can be prevented. If your windows do not have screens, then you can simply purchase screens. If you have a deck or porch, it should be properly gated or enclosed so that pets cannot not fall from them.
Maloney is a 4 year old Pitbull Terrier who is currently being fostered with Pittie Love Rescue and receiving veterinary care at VESCONE. On Saturday, April 28, 2012, he attended a Pet First Aid class at VESCONE that was led by Dr. Amy Shroff, VESCONE’s owner. Maloney was recovering from a partial tail amputation. During the class, Dr. Shroff became concerned with some redness and discharge from his surgery site and she recommended evaluation with VESCONE’s Emergency Department.
Dr. Kerrianne Kalbko, an emergency veterinarian at VESCONE, examined Maloney. She noted that his surgery site had some areas of unhealthy tissue that would need to be removed. A culture was performed of this area to determine if there were any bacteria present. He was admitted to VESCONE’s ICU for further treatment with antibiotics and wound care.
On Monday, April 30, 2012, Dr. Mary Ann Nieves, one of VESCONE’s surgeons, evaluated Maloney. She agreed that Maloney would require an additional procedure to debride some tissue from his tail. His surgery was successfully performed and he has been recovering well.
According to PittieLove Rescue, Maloney was rescued from Brockton Animal Control 6 weeks ago, was malnourished and had a bad case of “happy tail” (an injury caused by whacking the end of the tail while wagging) and diarrhea. After his surgery at VESCONE, he is recovering well.
He is currently looking for a new home. His foster parents say that he is a joy and very happy to be around. He gets along well with adults and children. He is house trained, crate trained and enjoys going on car rides.
How to Help:
If you cannot adopt Maloney, please consider donating to his cause.
Even with VESCONE’s shelter discount, the cost of Maloney’s medical expenses all together will be about $3000. People can donate directly on PittieLove Rescue’s website www.pittieloverescue.org through Chip-In, Pal Pal or credit/debit card. Checks can also be made out to PittieLove Rescue, Inc. and sent to P.O.Box 3532, Framingham, MA 01705. PittieLove Rescue, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, all volunteer organization so all your donations will be tax deductible.
By: Dr. Lindsay Vaughn, DVM, Diplomate, ACVECC
A real case: *names have been changed
“Maizy*” came to the VESCONE emergency department today after accidentally drinking a glass of wine. After briefly leaving the room, Maizy’s owners returned and found an empty wine glass and their beloved Cockapoo displaying abnormal behavior. She was very sedated and appeared unable to walk.
Her owners immediately brought her into VESCONE for evaluation. On presentation, Maizy was neurologically inappropriate and depressed. She required hospitalization and supportive care treat her alcohol toxicity. After spending 24 hours in the hospital, Maizy is back to her normal energetic self and is ready to go home.
What is alcohol toxicity?
Alcohol toxicity can be associated with accidental ingestion of alcoholic beverages, alcohol-containing household products such as windshield wiper fluid, or uncooked bread dough.
What are the symptoms?
The symptoms associated with alcohol ingestion can range from mild depression and disorientation to severe central nervous system depression. At higher doses, animals can develop respiratory depression, low blood sugar, low blood pressure, and abnormal heart rhythms.
How is it treated?
Depending on the amount of alcohol ingested and the severity of the symptoms, the pet may require intestinal decontamination and supportive care. If the alcohol was recently ingested, vomiting can be induced. They may also require a medication (activated charcoal) to bind the toxins within the intestinal tract to prevent absorption. They also typically will receive intravenous fluid therapy supplemented with vitamins which aids in metabolism of the alcohol. With severe alcohol toxicosis, more aggressive therapy may be warranted. Most animals are expected to recover within 12-24 hours with treatment.
How do I prevent this?
To avoid alcohol toxicity in your pets, keep all alcohol containing substances out of their reach. If you think your pet is suffering from alcohol toxicity or may have potentially ingested alcohol, contact your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control hotline.
If you or someone you know believes that their animal is in need of immediate medical attention, please call VESCONE at 781.684.8387. We are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.