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Congratulations on the new addition to your family! There's nothing like the love of a warm, fuzzy puppy. We want to help you keep your puppy healthy and happy. Regularly scheduled vaccinations are important for building your puppy's immunity to several serious dog diseases. The examination we perform will also help us detect any common puppyhood problems or illnesses. We may spread apart the vaccines of some smaller breed dogs to help reduce the risk of mild vaccine reactions such as lethargy and soreness. We absolutely recommend the “core” vaccines for your puppy. These include Rabies and Distemper combo vaccine. The “non-core” vaccines include Lyme vaccine and Bordatella, although Lyme disease is very prevalent in our area and we DO highly recommend this vaccine. We use only the safest brands of vaccines for your pet. When the puppy series is complete, yearly exams and vaccines will be necessary. Remember that we are always pleased to answer any questions about raising your puppy; please feel free to bring a list with you or call at any time. Here's a schedule of visits and vaccinations that we ask you to follow:

Age of Puppy: Vaccination/Procedure

Around 8 weeks
First examination, first (of 3) DA2PP vaccination. This is the distemper multiple 4 in 1 vaccine. It protects against Canine Distemper, Hepatitis, Parainfluenza, and Parvovirus. Bring a stool sample so we may check for intestinal parasites. Our staff will go over everything puppy related at this visit.

Around 12 weeks
Second DA2PP booster. This is done 3-4 weeks after the first vaccine. Bring along any questions you may have.

Around 16 weeks
The last DA2PP vaccine in the series and depending on the size of your puppy, we may give a Rabies vaccine. This first rabies vaccine is good for 1 year; subsequent vaccinations last for 3 years.

Around 14-20 weeks
Again, depending on the size of your puppy, we may begin the Lyme vaccine series during or after the core vaccine series. This series includes 2 Lyme vaccines that are given 2 weeks apart.

If you are planning to have your dog around other dogs: grooming, boarding, puppy classes, then you should consider giving a Bordatella vaccine to help prevent kennel cough. One vaccine given by drops in the nose is needed.

Heartworms are a worm-like parasite that are transmitted through the bite of a mosquito. They can grow in the heart and cause serious heart disease. There are many prescription products that are given monthly to prevent heartworm disease. We recommend Heartgard or Interceptor or chewable tablets. On occasion we may recommend a different product to suit your individual needs. We will begin your puppy on this preventative medication once it has reached about 8 weeks of age. You should continue to give it every month year-round. An yearly or every other year screening will be performed to test for heartworms and to make sure the medication is working. We will try to coordinate the heartworm test with one of your pet's annual vaccination visits.

There are many new products on the market which can be applied topically or taken orally to control fleas and/or ticks. In general, supermarket products are not very effective or safe. However, we have may products available only through veterinarians that work very well and are extremely safe when used correctly. Our clients have been very pleased with their effectiveness and safety. We recommend Frontline Plus for cats and kittens and Vectra 3D or K9 Advantix for puppies and dogs.


Congratulations on the new addition to your family! There's nothing like the love of a warm, fuzzy kitten. We want to help you keep your kitten healthy and happy. Regularly scheduled vaccinations are important for building your kitten's immunity to several serious cat diseases. The examination we perform at each visit will also help us detect any common kittenhood problems or illnesses. We use only Purevax vaccines for our once a year vaccines. These are the safest feline vaccines available. We absolutely recommend the “core” vaccines for your pet. These vaccines are Rabies and Distemper. We recommend “non core” vaccines only in certain situations. Leukemia vaccine is an example and we only recommend it to outdoor cats or cats that have contact with other outdoor cats. Remember that we are always pleased to answer any questions about raising your kitten. Please feel free to bring a list with you or call at any time. Here's a schedule of visits and vaccinations that we recommend you follow:

Age of Kitten: Vaccination/Procedure

Around 6-8 weeks
First examination and FVRCP vaccination. This is the distemper multiple vaccine. It protects against Feline Distemper (panleukopenia) Rhinotracheitis and Calicivirus.We will take a small blood sample to test for Feline “AIDS” and Leukemia, both of which are deadly but manageable diseases.Bring a stool sample so we may check for intestinal parasites. Our staff will go over everything kitten related at this visit.

Around 12 weeks
Second FVRCP booster and exam. This is done 3-4 weeks after the first vaccine.

Around 16 weeks
Final FVRCP and Rabies vaccination. This first rabies vaccine lasts for 1 year. Although we do have a 3yr Rabies vaccine that can be given the next year, we only prefer to use it in certain situations where a yearly vaccine is not practical. The 3 yr vaccine has been associated with a rare tumor called a sarcoma and it is deadly. Instead, we prefer to vaccinate your cat yearly with a Purevax Rabies vaccine to ensure your pets safety.


We recommend that you have your puppy or kitten altered at about 4-6 months. Spaying or neutering your dog at this age will prevent many health and behavioral problems later in life. These include some types of aggression/dominance behaviors or mammary, uterine, testicular, peri-anal and testicular cancers. It is done as a same day procedure and we use the safest anesthetic protocols.


While there is always some health risk associated with even the smallest amount of sedation, rest assured that at West End Veterinary Office we donít take your pets anesthetic needs lightly. Did you know that we take the same types of precautions your surgeon would in a human hospital? We understand that your pet is your family member and we donít cut corners. Our doctors stay current through literature and continuing education with the latest & safest surgical approaches to meet your loved oneís needs. A pre-surgical blood screen & full exam will be performed before the procedure to help ensure your pet is healthy inside and out. While under anesthesia, your pet will be intubated and then placed on inhalant anesthesia, warmed IV fluids, a body warmer (during & after surgery) and will be hooked up to one of our state of the art machines to monitor vital signs. We have the ability to check your petís heart (ECG), heart rate, pulse rate, respiration rate, blood oxygen levels, core temperature and blood pressure. Blood pressure is one of the most important parameters of the monitoring process and we are equipped with 2 different methods to monitor it depending on the species and the specific need of your pet. We have our Licensed Veterinary Technicians monitoring these vital signs throughout the entire anesthetic process.


When winter arrives, it comes in fast and furious. Along with it we often shift gears in our thinking about our furry friends and their health issues. Cold temperatures, snow, ice and short days create some well-known challenges for the human-animal bond. Following are some of the more obvious issues and some you may not have thought of.

Exercise Your Pets

Hopefully, all of our feline family members (and pocket pets) are kept indoors ALL year long. Therefore they are likely to remain the "couch potatoes" they always are. We should always be encouraging these lazy loungers to move their tails a little with safe toys, laser lights, etc. We also need to resist the temptation to "feed their boredom" with treats. Obesity is an epidemic problem in today's culture and our pets are no exception. If you can get your kitty to use a treadmill, more power to you. Otherwise you need to keep their caloric intake under control by measuring the daily ration (keep it premium dry food if possible, few treats) and keep it reasonable. Learn to weigh your cat and check it once a month.

Dogs (who are not litter box trained) still need to go out in the elements at least three times a day or more. Provide a clear path to their "toilet area" and supervise the event. Too often, dogs are let out in the inclement weather alone because it's too much trouble to put on our boots or snow gear. Don't let your dog become a statistic. As much as possible, take those long walks instead. Remember that snow and ice can chafe the feet, especially when mixed with melting chemicals like rock salt or calcium chloride. Wash their feet off when back home or consider doggie boots available through a good pet supply store.

Cold Temperatures Effect on Pets

Animals kept outdoors for any length of time, especially in the winter, need adequate shelter. Even arctic breeds need protection from wind and snow. Water and food may freeze and thus become unavailable. If your dog sleeps outside in a doghouse or other shelter during the winter, consider spending the night with him on a really cold night to see if the doghouse needs supplemental heat or insulation! You might just find that some corrective measures are in order. Older and thinner pets, as well as most short hair breeds, benefit from doggie sweaters or coats when going out for walks. Cold, dry winter air can aggravate our pets with chronic respiratory disease. Consider humidifiers and shorten their walks when it's bitter cold. Cats often get frostbite on their ear tips if left outside (bad, bad, bad) and they are often mangled or killed by fan belt injuries when they nestle on a warm automobile engine and the owner turns the key. Consider banging on your hood before you start your car to alert any stow-aways you may be harboring.

Things to Know about your Pet's Ears

If your dog has ever been diagnosed with a yeast ear infection, be aware that playing in the snow can result in moisture buildup inside your dog's ears similar to swimming in the summer. If you have an ear-drying solution to prevent these infections you need to use it after your dog has been romping in the snow.



Petshealth Care Plan, a pet health insurance provider, offers a free guidebook, "101 Things You Didn’t Know Could Harm Your Pet," available to caring pet owners. The guidebook lists a variety of chemicals, objects, plants and other household items that can be hazardous to your pet’s health. It also points out danger areas in and around your house. Use the links below to see the dangers that are spelled out in the booklet. Remember: These are just some of the dangers in your home! If would like your own free printed copy, call Petshealth Care Plan at 1-800-807-6724.

Household Items Harmful to your Pets

The following household items have the potential to cause serious illness, or even death, depending on the amount ingested by your dog or cat. Store these items in a safe location, out of your pet's reach.

1. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (ibuprofen, aspirin, etc.)

2. Acetaminophen

3. Cold and flu medications

4. Anti-depressants

5. Vitamins

6. Home insect products

7. Rat and mouse bait

8. Bleach

9. Diet pills

10. Disinfectants

11. Fabric Softener

12. Lead

13. Lighter Fluid

14. Mothballs

15. Anti-cancer drugs

16. Solvents (paint thinners, etc.)

17. Flea and tick products

18. Drain cleaners

19. Liquid potpourri

20. Slug and snail bait

21. Oven cleaner sprays

22. Lime/scale remover

23. Fly bait

24. Detergents

25. Tobacco products

Plants Harmful to your Pets

Compare this list with the decorative plants that you have in or around your home. If your home contains any of the following, consider placing them in areas that your pet does not have access to or get rid of them altogether.

26. Common Plants (as follows)

Andromeda Japonica
Asian Lily
Asparagus fern
Australian Nut
Autumn Crocus
Bird of Paradise
Bittersweet (American and European)
Black Locust
Branching ivy
Buddhist Pine
Calla Lily
Castor Bean
Corn Plant
Devil's Ivy
Easter lily
Elephant ears
Emerald fern
English Ivy
Fiddle-leaf philodendron
Florida Beauty
Glacier Ivy
Gold dust dracaena

Golden Pothos
Heavenly bamboo
Hurricane Plant
Jerusalem Cherry
Jimson Weed
Lilies (all Lilium species)
Lily of the Valley
Marble Queen
Morning Glory
Mountain Laurel
Needlepoint Ivy
Peace Lily
Poison Hemlock
Precatory Bean (rosary pea)
Red Emerald
Ribbon plant
Sago Palm
Satin Pothos
Striped Dracaena
Sweetheart Ivy
Water Hemlock

Foods Harmful to your Pets

Be sure to store these foods in places that your dog or cat cannot get to them. Under NO circumstances should you allow your pet to eat any of the following foods.

27. Avocados

28. Chocolate

29. Coffee (all forms)

30. Onions and onion powder

31. Garlic

32. Grapes

33. Raisins

34. Macadamia Nuts

35. Alcoholic beverages

36. Moldy/spoiled foods

37. Salt

38. Fatty foods

39. Xylitol (gum, candies or other foods sweetened with)

40. Tea leaves

41. Raw yeast dough

Objects Harmful to your Pets

Below is a list of common household objects that can cause puncture wounds, choking or internal organ damage to your pet. Never leave these objects laying around.

42. Balls (specifically balls that are small or have a smooth outer coating)

43. Batteries

44. Bread twist ties

45. Buttons

46. Coins

47. Cotton swabs

48. Glass

49. Hair pins and hair ties

50. Jewelry

51. Nylons (pantyhose)

52. Paper clips

53. Plastic wrap

54. Socks

55. Rubber bands

56. Sharp objects (knives, razors, scissors, nails, needles, etc.)

57. String/yarn/dental floss

58. Towels

59. Wax

Pet Trouble Areas in the Home

Here are some areas in your home that can cause or lead to serious problems for your cat or dog.

60. Balconies - Tall balconies without safety railings may lead to a dangerous fall.

61. Bath tubs or sinks - When filled with water, a bath tub or a sink can cause a small pet to drown.

62. Doors and windows - Open doors and windows commonly lead to dogs and cats running across busy roads.

63. Electrical cords - Can cause electrocution if plugged into an outlet

64. Fireplace - Flames can result in serious burns to your pet and ashes can cause illness if ingested.

65. Toilets - Toilet water is not healthy for pets to drink; always remember to close the lid.

66. Washer and dryer - Your dog or can can easily crawl into a washer or dryer without you knowing, so be sure to close the doors to these appliances when you are not using them.

Outdoor Trouble Areas for your Pet

67. Algae - Can be found in ponds or other bodies of water, certain forms can be toxic.

68. Antifreeze/Coolant - Some types of antifreeze or coolant products contain ethylene glycol, which is highly toxic to dogs and cats, even in small amounts.

69. Fire pit/Grill - Flames can result in serious burns and ashes can cause illness if ingested.

70. Fences/Gates - Openings in damaged fences or gates can be used by your cat or dog to run away or could lead to strangulation if they become stuck.

71. Deck lattice - Your dog or cat could become stuck in the openings under your deck and possibly strangle.

72. De-icing Salts - Some formulations may contain chemicals that are hazardous to pets if ingested in large amounts. Look for "pet-friendly" de-icing salts.

73. Compost (particularly if moldy)

74. Gasoline

75. Oil

76. Pesticides

77. Cocoa bean shell mulch fertilizer

78. Swimming pools and hot tubs - Never leave your pet unattended near uncovered pools, even if they can swim.

Holiday Hazards for your Pet

The holidays are special times during the year when families and friends come together in celebration. Unfortunately, many pet owners fail to recognize the potential dangers that these special occasions pose. Below are some basic holiday items that could potentially cause serious harm to your pet.

Valentine's Day

79. Flowers - Many types of flowers and plants that are found in the bouquets are harmful to dogs and cats.


80. Fake grass - This colorful "grass" may look appetizing to your pet, but actually poses a choking and intestinal obstruction hazard if ingested.

81. Small toys and other plastic items - If swallowed, small toys and plastic easter eggs can cause your pet to choke or even damage their intestinal tract.

Fourth of July

82. Fireworks - Fireworks not only scare pets and cause them to run off, but they can also cause serious injuries if detonated near your dog or cat. Many formulations can be potentially toxic to pets if ingested as well.


83. Pranks - Some pets, specifically black cats, have become victims of torture and abuse during Halloween, so be sure to keep your pet indoors.

84. Candles - Pets are naturally curious, and may be attracted to the bright lights of the flame in dark areas. Dogs and cats could either burn themselves by the flame or knock the candle over, starting a fire.

85. Xylitol - Candy or gum sweetened with xylitol is toxic and should be kept away from your pet.

86. Chocolate - All forms of chocolate can be harmful to your pet, potentially resulting in poisoning or even pancreatic inflammation from the high fat content.


87. Bones - Turkey, chicken and other small animal bones are very different from the large bones you find at the pet store. These small bones splinter easily and can cause serious internal damage if swallowed, so NEVER give them to your pet.

88. Hot containers - Your dog or cat will most likely become curious when they smell something cooking. Keep an eye on hot containers so that your pet does not tip them over, causing severe burns.


89. Holiday plants - The following holiday plants are toxic to cats and dogs: Christmas rose, Holly, Lilies and Mistletoe.

90. Ribbons - Sure it may look adorable, but placing a ribbon around your pet's neck may cause them to choke.

91. Bubbling lights - Older forms of this attractive decoration may contain methylene chloride, which is a highly toxic chemical.

92. Fire salts - Contain chemicals that could be harmful to pets.

93. Angel Hair (spun glass) - Can be irritating to eyes and skin, and could cause intestinal obstruction if eaten in large amounts.

94. Christmas tree water - Stagnant tree water or water containing preservatives could result in stomach upset if ingested.

95. Decoration hooks - Can cause blockage and/or trauma to gastrointestinal tract if swallowed.

96. Styrofoam - Can cause your dog or cat to choke if swallowed.

97. Ornaments - These can look like toys to your cat or dog, so keep them out of your pet's reach so they don't pose a risk of injury.

98. Tinsel - Can cause choking or internal trauma if swallowed.

New Year's

99. Balloons and Confetti - These are among the common items used to decorate a New Year's party venue, but can pose an obstruction or choking hazard to your pet if ingested. Be sure to keep an eye on them when they around these items or place them in an area that does not have decorations.

100. Loud noises - New Year's is typically a noisy holiday. Unfortunately, loud noises frighten pets and can cause them to run off. Keep your pet in a separate room, away from noisemakers, music and other loud sounds that may startle them.

101. Alcohol - Alcoholic beverages are toxic to pets and should never be given to your dog or cat.


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