Quarterly Prints (Fall 2019)
What’s New at CPVH?
We have added a new doctor, Support Staff, and a few High School Interns; read more about Dr. Annelise Nicoletti (Veterinarian), Isabelle (Client Relations), Kaylene and Calvin (Hospital Attendants) and Ashley, Noemy and Henry (students) on our staff page.
Welcome Dr. Annelise Nicoletti
It’s no secret that Dr. Alex Brenk left recently and we have been searching diligently for a new veterinarian. We are happy to announce the arrival of Dr. Annelise Nicoletti. Dr. Nicoletti is a graduate of Kansas State University and joined us as of October 1st. We are excited that she has joined the Claws & Paws family and she can’t wait to meet each of you and your babies.
Many clients have asked us to search for a veterinarian that can see exotic pets, such as Ball Pythons. We listened and we are excited that Dr. Nicoletti has a special interest in exotic pets and is excited to see your babies. Call and schedule your pet’s appointment with her today at 281.997.1426.
Nepeta cataria or catnip is an herb and member of the mint family. Known for its fanatical effects on cats, it is a delightful, fun and safe way to enrich your pet’s lives.
The chemical component of catnip that creates its effects is called nepetalactone and is found in the leaves and stems of the plant. When inhaled, it is thought to imitate feline pheromones that inspire the wide array of reactions we see in our pets. Some common reactions may include hyperactivity, increased affection, aggressive playfulness and an overall general euphoria. When ingested, the opposite occurs and a sedative-like effect can be seen. If your cat enjoys eating its catnip, monitor him or her closely. If too much is eaten, vomiting and diarrhea can occur.
Approximately, half of the feline population is affected by catnip’s scent. A cat’s response to it is hereditary and kittens are not affected until reaching sexual maturity around six months of age. The response is seen immediately and generally lasts around ten minutes after which a short immunity entails for roughly thirty minutes. After this short immunity period, a cat will once again respond to its scent.
Catnip can be purchased as a leafy plant or a sprayable liquid, but is most commonly found dried and prepackaged for toys. Not only used for play, catnip can also be used to encourage appropriate clawing behavior when placed near a desired or designated scratching area. The scent drawing them in and the pleasant feelings it creates keeping their attention.
Contrary to cats, catnip induces a sedative state in dogs after they’ve come into contact with it. Often it is used as an herbal remedy to combat nervousness and general anxiety in our pets. While catnip itself is not harmful to dogs, it is recommended to use caution when allowing them to play with catnip toys. They are often small and all or part of the them could be ingested if your dog is not closely monitored.
Remember, catnip is non-addictive and cannot overdose your pet. Enjoy and have fun!
Skipping Heartworm Prevention; Worth the Gamble? Or A Dangerous Game?
by Christina Strickland
If you’ve been coming in to see us here at Claws & Paws Veterinary Hospital, for any length of time, odds are you’ve had a discussion with one of our doctors or staff regarding the importance of heartworm prevention. A recent client question, had us stumped; “Exactly what are the odds of my dog getting heartworms? How many times do you have a positive heartworm test here at Claws & Paws?” Certainly a valid question, and one worth answering. After running some numbers, the results were surprising to us. So far in 2019, we’ve diagnosed more than one case per week. At least once a week, we’ve had to give an owner the awful news that their baby has heartworms.
To some, that may not seem like a large number. But at Claws & Paws Veterinary Hospital, it’s a surprising failure and here’s why. We know you, our clients. We know that your pets are your babies. They are not just pets, they are members of your family. We know from talking with you year after year, that you want the best for your pets and that you strive to provide the best for them. You are educated about heartworms, and you know that prevention is important. Most of you have your babies on heartworm prevention and test for heartworms annually. So what gives?? Why are we diagnosing so many heartworm positive pets?
According to the American Heartworm Society’s most recent triannual study, the average number of dogs diagnosed with heartworms was up 21.7% higher than the study done three years before. Included in the states with the five highest number of heartworm positive cases? Texas. Dogs and cats get heartworms from mosquitos, and we have a serious mosquito problem in our area. It’s not uncommon to see a mosquito in January! They come into our homes, making indoor pets sitting ducks for mosquito bites and possible heartworm infection. Indoor cats are certainly at risk of contracting heartworms. The likelihood of your indoor cat living in the Houston/Gulf Coast area and never encountering a mosquito is zero. They need year-round protection.
After reviewing the data of some recent studies on heartworm prevention and discussing this problem as a staff, we’ve discovered some likely culprits that may be putting your pets at risk for developing deadly heartworms:
You’re missing doses – We can see that some of you are not filling 12 doses of heartworm prevention per year. Unfortunately, just one missed dose can be enough of a window for heartworms to take hold. Set a reminder or five! Make sure that dose is given! If you need help, check out our RemindMe dosing Program – CPVH.com/RemindMe
You think your pet is on heartworm prevention, and they’re not – There are tons of heartworm, flea, and tick preventatives on the market and it’s not always easy to tell what parasites they are preventing. Bravecto, Nexgard, Frontline, Comfortis, and Advantage II are NOT heartworm preventatives. Heartworm preventatives should always require a prescription. If you are able to pick up your pet’s preventative over-the-counter, that is a red flag that it is not a heartworm prevention. However, just because it requires a prescription, doesn’t mean it protects against heartworm either. Ask us, we are always happy to help!
Your prevention isn’t legitimate – Buyer beware when it comes to internet and overseas pharmacies. The old saying “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is” rings true here. The lack of transparency when it comes to some pet medication internet sites, certainly is cause for concern. The risk of getting medication that isn’t what it’s advertised to be is present. The packaging can look identical to the real thing and be hard for even industry professionals to differentiate. You may be able to save a few bucks on the front end, but in the long run, it’s just not worth the risk.
Your pet hates their prevention – You and your veterinarian chose a heartworm and flea prevention product for your dog and he won’t take it. He spits it out, drools everywhere, or even worse vomits after taking the prevention. When you have to force your pet to take the prevention every month, it becomes less likely that it’s going to get done. Talk to us, we have lots of options! It shouldn’t be a monthly fight to keep your pet protected. We’ve got your back! We can help find the right fit for your baby!
Cost is a factor – You know you should have your pet on monthly prevention, but you just can’t afford it this month. Heartworm prevention products come in all sorts of varieties. Some are all-in-one products that contain flea, intestinal parasite, and heartworm prevention all in one monthly dose. While others are simply heartworm prevention. The cost difference between them can be significant. Before you skip prevention all together, talk to us about finding options that work for your budget. We want to keep your pet on prevention!
A Day in the Life!
by Nick Landrum
Here at Claws and Paws, your babies are obviously our number one priority. This is especially the case for boarding. You, as a pet owner are entrusting us with your beloved pets, and it is our job to treat them like they are our own. A day of work for us kennel technicians isn’t really work at all, since it is filled with fun and love toward your pets. We have certain procedures we take part in every day to make sure your baby gets enough attention, and here I’m going to tell you exactly what we do.
We arrive at the clinic around 7:00 am and our first priority is getting all of the dogs and puppies outside so they can use the restroom. Since we can’t stay with the animals overnight, they really need to use the restroom because they haven’t gone since evening. We take each animal out in our back yard one by one, unless they have come with a brother or sister then we obviously take them out as a family. Our back yard consists of very tiny rocks so that they don’t hurt the dog’s paw and it makes for the most sanitary clean up. If your pet doesn’t feel comfortable walking on the rocks, we take them for a long walk around the back of our facility. As soon as the pups are finished with their walk, we get them fresh food and water.
Before 1:00 pm, our goal is to try to have let your babies out three times, if we are very full sometimes, we can only fit in two walks. We wil always let your dogs out twice in the morning. At 1:00 pm we feed your pups again if they are scheduled for lunch, then they eat lunch there. If not, then we just keep rolling with the outside time so that your babies are having as much fun as they possibly can.
The hospital closes at 6:00 pm, so by that time we have taken the dogs out at least two more times. Usually it is between one and four that we have the first walk because 4:00 pm is when we feed again. After 4:00 pm we take them out again so that they get to go outside at the latest time possible, before their overnight stay. At the end of the day, before we clean the entire kennel area, we make sure your dog’s water bowls are completely filled and that the kennels are completely set up with as much comfort as possible, whether it’s pillows, blankets, towels, etc. We make sure they are as comfortable as possible.
When we have cats boarding, they get plenty of attention as well. Since they don’t need to go outside to use the restroom, we go straight to them after we take the pups out for their first walk. We let the cats out in the morning one by one in our cat room while we clean their kennel and prepare their food. The kitties have plenty of toys, and a scratch castle to play with in our cat room. We have little houses we put in the cages if the cats want somewhere to sleep/hide. At the same time the dogs get fed, we get the cats some food as well.
All throughout the day our job as the kennel staff is to watch after your babies, but we also have other tasks throughout the hospital as well. Sometimes if the hospital is getting full quick and it’s very busy up front, we will come help anybody that needs it.
Also we do laundry for the entire hospital, whether it is blankets, towels, or even yoga mats (for the senior pets to help with traction).
Overall, our job is absolutely great because when you bring your pets from home, we get to make our work a second home for them. As you can see the babies get a whole lot love and attention and are far from mistreated. Although we get very busy sometimes, we always make sure your pets are our #1 priority. Thank you very much for reading this, I hope you enjoyed seeing a day in my shoes.
The Season of Giving – Ways You Can Help
by Haley Greenway
Trick or Treat Trail (October)
Join our staff at Independence Park on Oct 31st from 5:30 pm – 8:00 pm!
Toys for Tots (Oct 24th – Dec 13th) *
We are once again a drop off location for Toys for Tots. Drop off any new, unwrapped toys. CPVH.com/Toys.
Community Give Back Event (Nov 11th – Dec 13th) *
We are giving back to our community by providing free spays/neuters, complete annual packages (exams, vaccinations, parasite screening, wellness bloodwork, & heartworm test) Heartworm/Flea prevention all at no cost! You may submit your nomination(s) online at CPVH.com/GiveBack.
Tree of Giving (last week of November) *
Christmas ornaments list items from a child’s wish list in Pearland. Wish list gifts range from nail polish to a family board game to bicycles. Choose a tag and return each with, your unwrapped gift More info: CPVH.com/Tree-of-Giving.
Party with Buddy the Elf (Sat, Dec 7th from 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm)
Come party with us and Buddy the Elf at Claws & Paws on Sat, Dec. 7th. Come snap some fun and free photos of your pets with Buddy the Elf (bring your own camera) and enjoy some of Buddy’s favorite magical snacks and beverages! Kids and pets welcome and encouraged. Facebook.com/ClawsAndPawsVet/Events.
*Deadline for Tree of Giving, Toys for Tots and Give Back Nominations is Friday, December 13th.