Veterinary Angels Medical Center offers a wide range of veterinary services for our patients. Just a few of our wellness and preventive care services are listed below. For more information on these or other services, please call 818-865-1800.
Getting your new puppy or kitten off to a healthy start sets the stage for their lives as healthy adults. Regular physical examinations, core and elective vaccinations, fecal testing for parasites, and deworming are all important elements of ensuring good health for your puppy or kitten. Our knowledgeable staff can help your family learn about potty training your pup, performing nail trims on your puppy or kitten, dietary recommendations, and potential health hazards for your new pet.
Spaying and neutering are additional topics to consider; the appropriate age for the timing of sterilization surgery may vary upon the species and breed of your pet. You may also want to consider Pet Health Insurance – a great way to get your new little family member off to a good start. Last but not least, you’ll also want to consider whether your new puppy or kitten may need preventives such as monthly heartworm prevention, and flea/tick preventives. We realize that adding a new family pet can come with lots of questions… but don’t forget, we’re here to help, so please don’t hesitate to call.
Do you want to know the secret to helping your pet enjoy a long, happy and healthy life?
As loving pet parents, we want our animal companions by our side for as many years as possible. At Veterinary Angels Medical Center, we believe the best way to ensure this happens is by making a commitment to their ongoing wellness. By bringing your pet in for regular checkups, you’ll help protect him or her from many common ailments. You’ll also give us the opportunity to identify and address potential health problems early, before they have chance to develop and worsen. These simple things can add years to your furry, feathered or scaly friend’s life.
An Ounce of Prevention
Our wellness services are comprehensive and extremely thorough, because we want to do everything in our power to keep your animal friend healthy. At each visit, the doctor will examine your pet from nose to tail, looking for anything out of the ordinary. We will also develop and implement a customized preventative care plan tailored to your companion’s unique needs, lifestyle and risk factors. This will include vaccines, parasite control, nutrition and weight management and anything else we deem relevant to your pet.
Ongoing Health Management
Wellness visits also provide us with regular snapshots of your pet’s health status at each appointment. We can then compare this information against previous exams to identify any changes. This allows us to detect the signs of illness early and develop an effective treatment plan in a timely manner. With many ailments, an early diagnosis can vastly improve the outcome for your pet. The more we stay on top of these things, the better chance we’ll have of extending and improving the quality of your best friend’s life.
Getting to Know You
Finally, annual visits give all of us at Veterinary Angels Medical Center the chance to truly get to know you and your pet. Developing a relationship with you and forging a bond with your animal friend is an integral part of the care we provide. This allows us to partner with you in managing your loved one’s health, and also makes visiting the vet a more positive experience. The more we understand your companion’s needs, the more precisely and effectively we can develop a health care plan.
You want to see that special guy or gal enjoy many wonderful years. We’d love to help you achieve that goal. Call us today and let’s get started!
A Balanced Diet
What your pet consumes can mean the difference between simply surviving and truly thriving. Yet with literally hundreds of different foods to choose from, figuring out which one is the right fit can be challenging. Furthermore, many species have their own special dietary requirements to consider. Our team is knowledgeable and experienced in identifying the unique nutritional needs of each patient. We can assess your pet and determine just what food would be perfect for him or her. We’ll even advise you on how much and how often you should be feeding your pet for optimum results.
The Right Weight
A few extra pounds for a human may be no big deal but, for a companion animal, it can lead to serious health problems. Obesity can even shorten your loved one’s life. That’s why making sure that your pet maintains a healthy weight is so important. We can help by determining which range would be ideal, then developing a strategy for achieving that goal. Through things like proper diet, exercise and calorie control, we’ll get that little guy or gal fit in no time!
As your pet ages, his or her nutritional and weight control needs will inevitably change. In order for us to continue achieving the desired results, we must make sure that our approach also evolves. At certain life stages, such as the transition from youth into adulthood, we’ll evaluate our plan and make any necessary adjustments. This will improve the chances of your companion staying in tip-top shape throughout his or her entire life.
Give the professionals at Veterinary Angels Medical Center a call today to get started. We can design a customized diet and exercise plan that will bring out the very best in your animal friend.
Pets are a part of our families, and preventing parasite infestations is an important part of keeping them healthy. Both ectoparasites (external parasites) and endoparasites (internal parasites) can affect your pet at some point in their life. Ectoparasites, such as fleas and ticks, are not only a nuisance to your pet, but can transmit vector-borne diseases to humans and pets such as Bartonella (cat scratch disease, transmitted by fleas); Lyme, Anaplasmosis, Ehrlichia, and Rocky Mountain Spotted fever. Fleas can also cause a severe dermatologic condition for your pet resulting in very itchy, inflamed skin, due to flea allergy dermatitis.
Roundworms are the most prevalent endoparasite in pets. Others include hookworms, whipworms, and tapeworms. Pets are typically infected with these parasites through accidental ingestion of parasite eggs (which are microscopic) from areas that have fecal contamination from other infected animals. Alternatively, some parasites are acquired through ingestion of intermediate hosts such as rodents (Taenia tapeworm species; Toxocara roundworm species) or fleas (Dipyllidium tapeworm species). These parasites are also a health risk to humans and are considered zoonotic – meaning they can be transmitted from animals to people. For example, if a person accidentally ingests roundworm eggs, the larvae can migrate in the body and cause organ damage and potentially blindness. Hookworm larvae in the soil and grass can infect bare skin and cause a condition in people known as cutaneous larval migrans.
Heartworm is another important endoparasite, but one which is not zoonotic. Heartworm infections result from pets being bitten by infected mosquitos. The larval form of the heartworm travels through the bloodstream to the heart where it develops into an adult. The adult heartworms live in the right side of the heart and left untreated, result in progressive heart failure and death. In initial stages of heartworm disease, pets may be asymptomatic. As the condition progresses, symptoms may evolve including a cough and exercise intolerance in dogs, and vomiting/coughing in cats. Treatment of heartworm disease can be very risky for the pet, and very costly.
Because of the health risk to your family and pets, it is important to keep your pet on a year-round parasite prevention program. There are several preventives that when used properly, are very effective at greatly reducing the risk of your pet acquiring heartworm disease, intestinal parasites, and tick transmitted diseases. Additionally, you can help prevent the risk of zoonotic disease to your family by practicing good hygiene (frequent hand washing), avoiding eating unwashed raw vegetables or undercooked meats and cleaning up pet feces in your yard. For more information about pets and parasites, visit petsandparasites.org, and consult with one of our friendly staff!
One of the most common but also frequently overlooked health problems for companion animals is dental disease. By age 3, most pets have some degree of periodontal disease. This occurs as a result of bacterial infection along the gum line, due to the formation of plaque. Plaque is a sticky substance containing millions of bacteria that forms along the tooth surface and gum line. Without frequent removal, plaque eventually hardens into tartar. Left untreated, this leads to gradual destruction of the gum tissue and supportive structures around the teeth, which can result in tooth loss. Not only is periodontal disease harmful and painful because it results in loss of teeth, but it can also cause damage to important vital organs such as the:
When it comes to dental disease, most pet owners don’t realize the extent of the problem until it is quite advanced; hence the importance of yearly to twice yearly physical examinations including a thorough oral health care assessment. In the early stages of dental disease, your veterinarian can recommend home dental health care measures such as tooth brushing, dental treats and rinses, and dental diets. When professional dental care is needed for your pet, general anesthesia is necessary. Your veterinarian will discuss the procedures involved in a COHAT (comprehensive oral health assessment and treatment) plan with you when dental care is needed. Most often, this will involve a day at the veterinary hospital to plan and perform the procedures, which may include doing:
- Pre-Operative Lab Work
- IV Catheterization
- General Anesthesia
- Dental X-Rays
- Teeth Cleaning and Polishing
- Dental Charting
- Extractions when indicated
Upon discharge, the veterinary team will review any instructions pertaining to post-dental medications, special feeding instructions, and when to resume home dental care. Your pet will thank you for remembering to take care of his or her mouth, and live a longer and happier life as a result.
When your pet is sick or injured, they can’t tell us what’s wrong. A thorough physical exam and history (symptoms you’ve noted at home) are the first important step. If the diagnosis is not immediately evident upon initial assessment, your veterinarian will recommend specific diagnostic tests. These may include:
- In-House Laboratory testing for baseline blood counts and organ function tests, or infectious disease. Blood and/or urine samples may be collected from your pet, for point-of-care testing, or reference lab tests. Point-of-care tests are those tests that are done on-site in our hospital so as to be able to determine results and make treatment recommendations in the most timely fashion possible. In other cases, lab samples may need to be sent off to off-site laboratories (reference laboratories) – when the test cannot be performed with in-hospital lab equipment, or when the test results are not needed urgently.
- Imaging such as x-rays or ultrasound, and Digital Radiology which allows diagnosis of conditions of the heart and lungs, gastrointestinal obstruction, tumors of the internal organs or bones, fluid in the chest or abdominal cavity, urinary stones or gallstones, reproductive diseases, and bone/joint disorders. For most patients, gentle restraint can be used for these procedures, however, in some cases, sedation may be necessary.
Diagnostic testing is an important step in the development of a treatment plan for your pet, allowing your veterinarian to most effectively target the underlying problem(s) and assess the probability of successful treatment. Your veterinarian can explain the purpose of each diagnostic test for your pet, and help prioritize which tests may be most helpful in determining the cause of your pet’s illness.
We love Senior Pets! Senior pets have special needs, and benefit from more regular veterinary visits compared to their younger counterparts. Age-associated conditions include:
- Dental Disease
- Heart Disease
- Liver Disease
- Kidney Disease
- Endocrine Disorders
These conditions will start to become more prevalent as your pet gets older. For this reason, we recommend twice-yearly veterinary visits for pets over 7 years of age. Your aging pet may be showing early signs of osteoarthritis such as stiffness after rest or play, difficulty going up or down stairs and reduced activity. Early intervention with joint supplements and prescription arthritis medications when indicated, along with modified nutrition and exercise plans, can greatly improve your pet’s comfort and mobility. Likewise, performing annual screening lab work on your older pet can help identify early stages of medical problems that might go unrecognized, and progress significantly without treatment.
Some pets experience age-related behavioral changes that can be a sign of cognitive dysfunction, which is similar in some ways to dementia. Your veterinarian can recommend diet modification and supplements to help improve your older pet’s mental sharpness. Getting older doesn’t have to be fraught with troubles for your pet… see your vet regularly to help keep your senior pet healthy and comfortable.
When your pet becomes suddenly ill or in event of an emergency, timely diagnostic test results are extremely important to help your veterinarian determine the best treatment plan. We have state-of-the-art in-hospital laboratory equipment capable of yielding lab results within minutes. Baseline laboratory testing for your sick pet may include:
- Determination of blood cell counts: changes in white blood cell counts, red blood cell counts, and platelet counts can indicate problems such as anemia, dehydration, infection, auto-immune disease, and certain types of cancerous conditions
- Blood chemistry tests: these tests assess liver function, kidney function, blood sugar, blood proteins, calcium and phosphorus levels, and pancreatic function.
- Electrolyte tests: Sodium, potassium and chloride levels may be abnormal when your pet is dehydrated or having fluid losses through vomiting or diarrhea. Intravenous fluids and/or supplementation may be indicated when electrolytes are severely deranged.
- SNAP tests: point-of-care “snap” tests are available for certain infectious diseases such as Feline Leukemia and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, Canine Parvovirus, Giardia, and Leptospirosis.
- Coagulation tests: these tests detect deficiency in clotting disorders, which can be present in cases of certain kinds of rodenticide poisoning and in severe liver disease/failure
- Microscopy: microscopic evaluation of bodily fluids including blood, urine; samples of skin and ear secretions, and needle biopsies of swellings or tumors can be performed in-clinic to assist in the diagnosis of systemic diseases, urinary disorders, skin and ear diseases, and differentiation of benign vs. cancerous tumors.
Our veterinary team will help explain which tests are most important for your pet. It is very important to us to include you in the decision-making process for your pet, so please don’t hesitate to ask a question if you need clarification.
Does your dog, cat, or farm animal need surgery? Contact us for a second opinion or consultation. We go out of our way to ensure that every surgical procedure performed in our clinic is as stress-free as possible. You can trust that your loved one will be in excellent hands with us. Our surgeons perform countless surgical procedures, and they have the expertise needed to bring great results.
Some of Our Most Common Surgical Services:
- Spay & Neuter
- Fracture Repair
- Mass Removal
- Urinary Blockage
- Oral Surgery
- and More!
Click here to read more about our surgical process and what your pet will experience, from pre-surgical care all the way to discharge.
In emergency, seconds count. When you arrive with your pet on emergency or urgent care basis, our highly trained staff will perform an immediate triage assessment to assess the stability of your pet and need for emergency medical intervention. In life-threatening situations, you may be asked for consent to perform CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation).
The first component of basic triage is assessing your pet’s level of consciousness, airway/breathing (labored breathing or choking, lack of oxygen), circulatory status (pale gums or weak pulses, racing heart), and pain score. Patients needing urgent medical attention, upon consent will be moved to our treatment area for immediate doctor assessment and commencement of emergency care.
Placing an IV catheter and administering IV fluids, giving oxygen supplementation, and pain relief medications may be elements of the initial stabilization of your pet. As your pet is stabilized, your veterinarian will review a diagnostic plan which may include imaging (radiographs, ultrasound) and laboratory evaluation (blood and/or urine tests) to ascertain the severity of the situation and tailor treatment for your pet.
At times, your pet may need advanced care at a referral or specialty center. When this is the case, our staff will discuss options for transfer and referral. Your primary veterinarian will stay abreast of your pet’s status at the emergency facility.
At Veterinary Angels Medical Center, we recognize that not everyone chooses a dog or cat as their pet. We also understand that birds, reptiles and exotics have special needs and requirements to keep them happy and healthy. Our doctors and staff are fully trained in exotic pet care. We can answer any questions you may have about a new or existing pet.Learn More!
Why not trust the skilled, compassionate team at Veterinary Angels Medical Center? We’ve got all of the services, amenities and perks needed to become your loved one’s home away from home. Our full service boarding includes comfortable accommodations, delicious meals, daily exercise and plenty of TLC from our loving staff members. When you can’t be there to provide your pet with the love and attention he or she deserves, we will!Learn More!