It’s Time to Get Your Pet’s Teeth Cleaned!


It's Time to Get Your Pet's Teeth Cleaned!

Did you know that — just like humans — dogs and cats need dental care? Each February, Olive Branch Pet Hospital celebrates National Pet Dental Health Month by educating pet parents and spreading awareness about the importance of caring for your pet’s teeth.

Why Is Dental Care So Important for Pets?

It’s estimated that by age 3, at least 70% of cats and 80% of dogs have some form of periodontal disease, and this bacterial infection of the gums can cause a whole host of health problems for pets.

What Is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal Disease Prevention for Pets

The best way to prevent periodontal disease to protect your pet’s health is with a combination of at-home and professional dental care.
At home, we recommend brushing your pet’s teeth with a toothbrush that’s designed for your pet’s breed and size. Be sure to use toothpaste that’s flavored and formulated to be safe for cats and dogs. If your pet doesn’t tolerate brushing, try using pet dental wipes, instead. You can also provide your pet with dental-friendly chew toys and treats.
You can also talk with our veterinarians about scheduling a professional dental appointment for your cat or dog. During these appointments, we’ll scale and polish your pet’s teeth to remove tartar buildup and perform a thorough examination. Otherwise similar to human dental exams, professional pet dentistry appointments do occur with pets under general anesthesia.

Pet Dentistry in Pensacola

At Olive Branch Pet Hospital, we offer comprehensive pet dentistry services. Whether you have a dog or cat, we strongly encourage you to celebrate National Pet Dental Health Month and safeguard your pet’s wellness by scheduling a dental cleaning and exam. We’ll scale and polish your pet’s teeth and perform a complete examination to ensure there aren’t any more serious issues occurring.
To learn more or to schedule a dental appointment for your pet in Pensacola, contact us today!

New Year’s Resolutions Your Pet Will Thank You For


New Year's Resolutions Your Pet Will Thank You For

For many, a new mindset accompanies the new calendar each year. These changes come in the form of New Year’s resolutions. If you have pets, then you might as well choose a resolution that benefits them, too! Consider these suggestions or come up with a four-legged-friendly New Year’s resolution of your own!

5 Pet-Friendly New Year's Resolutions

1. Get Active Together

Getting plenty of exercise is essential to both human health and pet health. Exercise helps us maintain a healthy weight. It reduces the chances of developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and joint problems like osteoarthritis. It also releases endorphins that’ll make you and your pet feel happier and less stressed. So, get a harness, a leash, and hit the pavement!

2. Update Your Pet's Identification Information

About 10 million pets go missing every year. While every pet owner takes precautions to prevent their pets from getting lost or stolen, accidents can still happen. If your pet gets lost, you can greatly increase their chances of reuniting with you by getting them a microchip and keeping your contact information up to date.
So, resolve to update your pet’s ID tags and get a pet microchip sooner rather than later this year.

3. Challenge Your Brains

Just like pets need a healthy diet, vaccines, and regular exercise to stay healthy and happy, they also need enrichment with activities that keep their minds busy and entertained. You can enrich your pet’s life and bond at the same time with positive reinforcement training. Consider enrolling in a class or simply work with your pet at home.

4. Get Crafty

Enrich your life and your pet’s with fun craft projects. You can find endless recipes for homemade dog and cat treats and ideas for hand-crafted pet toys. Set a goal to try a new idea or recipe each month. You’ll have fun, and your pet will appreciate your efforts.

5. Open Your Hearts

Donate time volunteering at a local animal shelter or, if you have room in your home and budget, consider adopting another furry friend.

Start the New Year with Your Pet's Annual Wellness Exam

However you resolve to change your life this new year, one of the best ways to start is by scheduling an annual wellness and preventative care appointment for your pet. We’ll examine your pet and make sure all vaccines are up-to-date while answering any questions you might have regarding your pet’s changing health needs. From all of us at Olive Branch Pet Hospital, we wish you and yours a happy and healthy New Year!

Standard of Care

Standard of Care

Most people visit their physicians at least once yearly for routine checkups. These visits usually include an exam by the doctor and bloodwork that screens for hidden problems. Yearly bloodwork aids the physician in identifying potential problems the patient may have, but unable to see on physical exam. It has always been more beneficial to treat problems early in the disease course as opposed to the advanced disease state. The outcome for the patient as well as their quality life is more favorable with early intervention.
Veterinarians have always practiced preventative medicine with vaccines, heartworm and flea/tick medications etc. Overall as a profession however, we have been reluctant, largely due to cost, to recommend routine bloodwork as part of preventative care until the patient presents with a problem. Throughout the country, experts are recommending screening bloodwork as part of a pets annual or semi-annual checkups. Pets who visit their veterinarian once yearly equate to a human visiting their physician once every 7 years. As you can imagine, alot can happen health wise to a person in 7 years, especially as we age. Anticipating an increase volume of bloodwork due to this changing philosophy, veterinary labs are making these tests more affordable for the veterinarian to recommend to pet owners.
For instance, 1 in 6 patients under 6 years of age and 1 in 5 over the age of 6 have a significant health issue diagnosable on screening bloodwork. In my experience, outcome is always more favorable and less expensive when the disease is diagnosed and treated early in its course. Several times monthly, I diagnose early kidney failure in a patient on routine screening tests. The importance of this particular test is that the patient can live 600 days with early intervention as opposed to 180 days if diagnosed later in the disease course. Therefore, in order to improve our standard of care for our patients, we will be recommending screening bloodwork at annual and semi-annual visits.
As always, if anyone has any questions related to the monthly health columns, please feel free to call the office.