dog blanketVeterinary Medical Care

Whether your dog has a simple issue or a complex problem, our medical evaluations, diagnostics and treatments can help. Our highly qualified doctors and state-of-the-art facility allows us to diagnose and treat many conditions quickly and efficiently. Acquiring important diagnostic information quickly can be vital when your dog is ill or injured.

Out-Patient Appointments

Regular appointments are designed for preventative care and for taking care of life’s little illnesses encountered along the way. You also have the option of admitting your dog for the day, so that we can address your dog’s needs while you are at work.

In-Depth Consultations

Consultations are available to discuss and evaluate dogs with complex problems or for obtaining a second opinion.

In-Patient Hospitalization

Hospitalization for the treatment and monitoring of critical care patients that require surgical or medical treatment or ICU monitoring. Plus many services not listed here.

Don’t see what you are looking for? Contact us – we probably offer it!

We use State-of-the-art Equipment

  • Radiology (x-rays)
  • Full Dental Equipment
  • Tonometry (for Glaucoma)
  • EKG (for heart evaluation)
  • Blood Pressure Evaluations
  • In-House Laboratory

dog with brush toothDental Care

Dental care for your pet is just as important as your dental hygiene. A pet with clean teeth and fresh breath is happier and more pleasant to be around. There are also medical reasons for prophylactic dental care.

Most dental problems in animals occur UNDER the gum line and go unnoticed until severe dental decay, gum infections, and jaw bone loss occur.

Oral disease can lead to infections and damage to organs far from the mouth (i.e. heart, liver and kidneys).

Home Dental Care

Home care of your pet’s teeth is not only very important, but is also easy and rewarding. A little time and patience is well worth it for removing dental plaque and tartar build-up.

Special pet toothbrushes and toothpastes are available that make home dental care easy. Oral rinses and dental chews are also available. It is important to remember that human toothpastes are not safe for pets because they can be toxic when swallowed.

Professional Dental Cleaning (Prophylaxis)

Veterinary dental care is a vital part for maintaining your pet’s dental health. At Countrycare Animal Complex, we use ultrasonic scalers for cleaning, record complete dental mapping and use high speed special hand pieces for polishing and dental procedures.

Advanced Dental Care

Besides plaque formation and periodontitis, what else can go wrong inside your pet’s mouth? A short list would include cavities, root abscesses, broken or chipped teeth, jaw fractures, and oral tumors to name a few. Like a dentist, we can do a variety of restorative procedures. These procedures, although available, are not a substitute for a common sense approach to good oral hygiene, home care, and routine dental cleanings.

shepherdCancer Treatments

How Often do Pets Get Cancer?

Unfortunately, cancer is common in pets and the incidence increases with age. Cancer accounts for almost 50% of deaths of pets over the age of 10! Dogs get cancer at approximately the same rate as humans.

The Categories of  Tumors

Tumors or masses can be ‘benign’ or ‘malignant’. Malignant tumors equals the term “cancer”. The definition of a tumor is the uncontrolled, abnormal growth of cells or tissues in the body. Benign tumors do not grow aggressively, do not invade surrounding tissues and do not spread to other parts of the body. Malignant tumors tend to grow rapidly, invade local tissues and spread (or metastasize) to other parts of the body.

Types of Cancer

Under the general category of cancer, there are about a hundred specific types, each one involving different body parts and having its own name. Cancer can attack the skin or bones or liver etc. The name of the cancer is connected to the type of organ or cells that are involved.

How is Cancer Treated?

There is no single right answer to this question. Every dog and cat is unique and every kind of cancer is different. The types of treatment chosen will depend on the animal’s age, general health, type of cancer and other factors.

The three most common cancer treatments are:

  1. Surgery: Surgical removal of a tumor (when possible). Surgery can be a very effective method to remove or reduce tumors.
  2. Chemotherapy: Chemical medications are used to kill tumor cells.
  3. Radiation Therapy: High doses of radiation are aimed directly at the tumor site to shrink or stop its growth.

Holistic and Alternative Therapies for Cancer

There have been major advances in holistic therapies for cancer treatment. We offer several comprehensive alternative therapies for cancer. Relevant therapies for specific types of cancer are discussed on an individual patient basis. Click here for more information about holistic cancer options.

Screening for Cancer

Is there a test to find out if my pet has cancer? Unfortunately, there is not a straightforward test that will screen for all types of cancer. Routine blood work and radiographs can help screen for certain cancers. Skin lumps & bumps should be evaluated & possibly removed.

Protecting Your Pet from Cancer

Below is a list of ways to keep your pet in good health.

  • Don’t smoke around your pet
  • Spay or neuter your pet at an early age
  • Feed high quality nutritious food
  • Keep your pet at a healthy weight
  • Go green-use non-toxic cleaners when possible
  • Monitor lumps for changes in size or appearance
  • Watch for changes in eating and bowel habits
  • Schedule veterinary exams at least semi-annually

10 Common Signs of Cancer in Pets

  • Abnormal swellings that continue to grow
  • Sores that do not heal
  • Weight loss
  • Loss of appetite
  • Bleeding or discharge from any body opening
  • Offensive odor
  • Difficulty eating / swallowing
  • Hesitation to exercise or loss of stamina
  • Persistent lameness / stiffness
  • Difficulty breathing, urinating or defecating.

hip dysplasia treatmentPennHIP

What is PennHIP?

A scientific method to evaluate a dog for his susceptibility to develop Hip Dysplasia. The technique involves taking several different radiographic evaluations of the hip joints in order to predict the probability of a dog developing hip dysplasia during his life.

“Passive hip laxity” can be measured with one of the specific positioning techniques. The degree of “passive hip laxity” is an important factor in determining the susceptibility in developing Hip Dysplasia. The protocol was developed at The University of Pennsylvania, hence the name, PennHIP.

What is Hip Dysplasia?

Hip Dysplasia is a genetic/heritable condition causing arthritis or degenerative joint disease of the hip joints. It affects every breed of dog but is most commonly seen in large and giant breeds. Hip Dysplasia can be seen in very young dogs or it can develop in a more chronic form as a dog ages. It is one of the most common and debilitating diseases seen in large breed dogs today.

How Does PennHIP Differ from OFA?

  1. PennHIP evaluations allow viewing the geometry of the hip joint.
  2. Distraction x-ray views of the hip joint allow evaluation of the laxity of structures that hold the joint together.
  3. Compression views indicate the amount of joint fluid present to lubricate the joint.

Using all of this information together has been shown to be a more reliable indicator of future hip dysplasia. Also, PennHIP evaluations can be done as young as 16 weeks of age, much sooner than the OFA standard of 2 years of age.

The evaluation process of the x-rays is under strict scientific protocol and interpretation will not vary with the radiologist reading the films. Also, individual dogs are measured against dogs of the same breed.

Even though we cannot change the genetic makeup of a dog, by using preventative medicine such as joint supplements and appropriate environmental management, you could lessen or slow down the process of hip degeneration in you dog if he/she has the genetic predisposition to hip dysplasia.

The Value of PennHIP

The value of PennHIP goes far beyond breeding evaluations, it is useful for evaluating any dog with the potential of developing hip dysplasia.

Dr. Barr is certified as a PennHIP veterinarian. For more details visit the PennHIP website

dog on own - squareMicrochipping

Did you know that one in three pets will become lost in their lifetime?

What is a Microchip?

A microchip is a permanent pet ID designed to help your pet find his way home if he becomes lost. Even if your pet wears a collar and tag identificiation – they can come off and leave you pet unprotected.

Microchips are permanent ID’s place under the skin. A lost pet can be ‘scanned’ for their microchip and can be reunited with their owner.

A microchip is the only form of pet identification that is permanent, with a unique number that cannot be altered or removed.

The microchip itself has no internal energy source, so it will last the life of your pet. It is read by passing a microchip scanner over the pets shoulder blades. The scanner emits a low radio frequency that provides the power necessary to transmit the microchips unique cat or dog ID code and positively identify the pet.

We Recommend that All Pets be Microchipped

  • Microchips help to give your pet the best chance of being identified should they ever become lost
  • Although tags are important, they can tear or slip off
  • A microchip is placed under your pet’s skin
  • The microchip is scanned with a reader by animal clinics and humane societies
  • Microchips are convenient, safe and reliable
  • The procedure is simple and inexpensive

For more information about microchipping , please visit Home Again Microchips.

What to do if Your Pet is Lost

Click here to learn more on how to prevent losing a pet and what to do if your pet does become lost.

Body Condition & Obesity

Is My Pet Really Fat?

Do you know what your pet’s current weight is? Do you know what the ideal weight is for your pet? As important as your pet’s specific “weight number”, is his body condition. Body condition is determined from a visual and touch perspective. A pet with a healthy body condition should have:

  • A “waist” when viewed from above
  • A “tucked stomach” when viewed from the side
  • Ribs can be easily felt through a thin layer of body flesh

If any of these 3 items are absent your pet may be overweight. If all are missing and you notice fleshy deposits over the chest, spine, and tail base your pet is obese.

Refer to the Body Condition Score Chart (link below) for a more detailed listing of your pet’s body condition. A Body Condition Score (BCS) of 4-5 is ideal.

Obesity is a growing problem – up to 40% of pets in the U.S. are considered overweight or obese. Obesity is linked to dozens of serious and even life-threatening illnesses and medical conditions.

Breed Issues

Certain breeds of dogs are prone to obesity including the following:

  • Small Breeds: Cairn Terriers, Dachshunds, Scottish Terriers & Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.
  • Medium Breeds: Beagles, Cocker Spaniels, Basset hounds, Shetland Sheepdogs
  • Large Breeds: Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers, Rottweilers
  • Giant Breeds: Bernese Mountain Dogs, Newfoundlunds, Saint Bernards

Medical Problems Associated with Obesity

  • Diabetes
  • Arthritis
  • Compromised Immune System
  • High Cholesterol
  • Heart Disease
  • Heart Failure
  • Hypertension (High blood pressure)
  • Breathing problems
  • Greater risk of Heat Stroke
  • Kidney Disease
  • Cancer
  • Pain / Orthopedic problems
  • Pancreatitis
  • Skin Conditions
  • Diminished Quality of Life
  • Premature Death

Lean Pets Live an Average of Two Years Longer than Overweight Pets!

 

What People
Have Said

"Dr. Heintz was so gentle and compassionate with our dog. The vet tech was so kind and understanding with all of the questions that I asked her. They made me feel comfortable with the decisions that we made for Maddie."
- Faye D., Algoma