Friday, Oct. 31st 2014

Wellness Care and Massage Benefits for pets

Seminar  Thursday, November 20, 2014 from 7-8:30 p.m.:  Weight Loss Strategies for Pets—When Fluffy is Too Fluffy.  In our multi-purpose room at the clinic.   This is free to all interested pet owners, so invite your friends and family who have concerns about their pet’s lack of a waist or bulging belly.

Benefits of massage: Did you know we regularly schedule certified pet massage therapists to come offer their services at our clinic?  The benefits of massage are legion, and all pets deserve a little pampering now and then!  Massage can relax tight muscles, relieve trigger points that contribute to pain from arthritis and other lamenesses, and help improve circulation.  Working the muscle fibers helps remove toxins and mobilize them for excretion.  Older or overweight pets often have muscle pain in addition to arthritis, and helping loosen up those muscles can aid in pain control.   Call us to see when we have our next scheduled massage day.    

Julie doing massage


What IS Basic Pet Wellness Care?

I have addressed Wellness Plans several times in these newsletters, which is an indirect way to specify my idea of basic wellness care for pets.  But I thought it might be good to address this issue more directly.  What does a HOLISTIC veterinarian consider year-round well pet care? 

Vaccinations: While we at WHPC do not recommend annual boosters on all vaccinations, we still feel it is important to keep your pet protected from contagious disease.  For adult animals, we recommend three-year rabies vaccination.  We offer titers to check antibody levels for the core vaccines in dogs (distemper, hepatitis, and parvo) and only recommend boosters if the antibody levels are too low.  Other vaccines are on a case-by-case basis determined by your pet’s lifestyle and likelihood of exposure.

Puppies and kittens should receive at least two booster vaccinations for the core diseases by 4 months of age, plus a rabies shot between 4 and 6 months. 

Parasite Prevention: It is important in our area to keep at least your dogs on heartworm prevention year-round, and it is also available and recommended for cats.  We offer Frontline for flea and tick control, but can also discuss using oral garlic in your dogs to keep these parasites at bay.  Dogs on year-round preventative for parasites should still have tests every other year or so just in case, to make sure nothing has slipped through.  We all know some pets spit their pills out behind the couch on occasion. 

Chiropractic:  All pets have a spine which protects the spinal cord, the control center for all bodily functions including the immune system, digestive system, and more.  To keep this control center at peak performance, we recommend dogs and cats receive chiropractic examinations a minimum of twice a year.  Pets with arthritis, high performance levels, or other considerations may benefit from 4 or more per year. 

Twice-annual examinations:  Since our pets instinctively hide illness and some ailments have very subtle early signs, we strongly recommend your pet be examined by a veterinarian at least twice a year.  Many problems can be cured or better controlled if caught early.  No one wants their pet to suffer needlessly, so don’t wait if you perceive your pet is acting a little “off”. 

Nutrition:  Part of every examination at WHPC includes discussion of the pet’s current diet.  We encourage new clients to bring in the label or name of their current food so we can discuss whether it is appropriate for that pet given the age, breed, and health history.  Health comes from the inside out, and nutrition plays a huge role in that health. 

Bloodwork:  Ideally, we would do at least a basic mini-panel yearly on all animals, and a full panel once or twice a year on older pets.  These lab tests evaluate organ function, looking for early signs of kidney or liver disease, pancreatic problems, low-grade infections, and more.  As stated above, pets try to hide their illnesses from us.  Many organ problems can be managed much more effectively if caught before the animal is visibly ill.  Bloodwork is our secret weapon in catching these problems before they make your pet even sicker.  When we recommend bloodwork, it’s not being suggested just to raise your bill.  We sincerely believe that if we can start treating these problems sooner, we can help your pet live a longer and higher-quality life.  And normal bloodwork isn’t wasted money, it is reassurance that your pet is healthy and gives us a baseline for comparison to future lab tests.

 Chronic Disease Maintenance care: If your pet already has chronic health issues, we want to do everything possible to control these problems and alleviate their symptoms.  Many of the above tools will contribute to their care, and we may add other therapies such as cold laser, acupuncture, nutritional supplements, or more.  More frequent blood tests may be needed, or x-rays.  

Be assured that every recommendation Dr Leonard makes is with your pet’s best interests in mind.  She sees herself as the advocate and spokesman for your pet.  It is up to the pet owner to make the final decisions as to what care they are willing and able to provide, after evaluating what Dr Leonard has to say about recommended care.

 Facebook reminder:  Once again we want to remind you that just because you have “liked” Whole Health Pet Center on Facebook, this does not mean you will see every post.  Facebook picks and chooses which posts to show you according to your interests, which are measured by what you interact with.  First, visit our page and make sure you are “following” our page, in addition to “liking” it.  While you are there you might like, comment, or share a post or two as an indication to Facebook that our page is of interest.  Then, whenever you see our posts on your timeline, please like, comment, or share our posts as often as possible to keep them visible on your wall.  You can also click on the three dots in the lower right of the page cover photo to see other options, like “write a review” or “share” the page.  I am not being a click hoarder, I just want to make sure you see our posts since Facebook is my way of staying in touch on a daily basis.  Encouraging you to interact with my page is my alternative to paying Facebook to boost my posts.

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Whole Health Pet Center
18011 E St. Rte 58
Raymore, MO 64083

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