Spring at Baxter Animal Hospital by Michelle, RVT

The days are getting longer, the temperatures are on the rise! It is at this time of the year that things starts to pop up in and on the ground and the surroundings around. If you have a new or young puppy or maybe even a very curious older dog, then here are some things to think about this spring.

Vaccines. They are very important. Did you know that parvo virus can survive the winter? This virus is stable and infective in the environment for well over 5 months to years. It is heat and cold resistant.  There is no antidote for this disease. We treat symptoms and support hydration, and pain and hope that the immune system is strong enough to fight off this life threatening virus.

Our young puppies are out and about in the outdoors, digging and eating dirt and shrubbery. Out in public, we do not know if an infective dog has been in the area. Is your puppy/dog up to date on vaccines?

Plant ingestion. Not all plants, fruits and vegetables are safe. As the snow melts, plant bulbs become accessible and mushrooms start to sprout. Mushrooms can cause a slight Gastrointestinal upset to severe organ failure due to toxicities. Certain plant bulbs can also be toxic to our canine counterparts.   Puppies can get into all kinds of trouble, they like to put there mouths on everything in site. Always be aware of what your puppy or dog is doing while out in the fresh spring air. A great resource of plant/mushroom toxicities is the ASPCA poison website, ( www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control) or Pet Poison Helpline, (www.petpoisonhelpline.com/).

Parasites. They are all around everyday. Certain times of the year make for higher risk of your puppy/dog getting a disease from a parasite or picking up the parasite itself. There are different types of parasites. External and internal. External parasites include Ticks, which are a big concern in the spring and fall in cool, damp surroundings, Fleas, which are a year round concern, and Sarcoptic mange to name a few. Mosquitoes are also a huge concern as they carry the Heartworm parasite that can infect our puppies and dogs of all ages. Internal parasites include roundworm, hookworm and whipworm to name a few.

Is your puppy or dog protected? There are a number of prevention products available that are safe for you and your puppy/dog. Prevention is the key! 

Please call us for more information about all or any of the above spring time concerns and get your pet protected!