Sunday, July 29, 2012

The Queen's Corgi's

Queen Elizabeth with her Corgi's
The 2012 Olympic Games in London, England have begun, and while watching the opening ceremonies, one thing really stood out for me: Queen Elizabeth's dogs seem to be overweight.

That's right - of all things to notice from the Olympic Games Opening Ceremony - my mind focused on some overweight Corgi's.  I think this is a great time to discuss obesity and pets and what you can do about it for your own pet. Obesity is not a breed standard and her dogs could certainly stand to lose a little weight.
As with humans, obesity in dogs is the most common nutrition-related health condition in our society. Is your dog obese? Risk factors include increased age, spaying/neutering and inactivity. These breeds are most at risk:

Friday, July 27, 2012

Happy Anniversary

Royal City Animal Hospital is happy to announce that this blog has been in production for 1 year.

Our goal is to provide our Guelph area clients (and our readers from all over the world) with information that helps them become the owners their pets need them to be. We enjoy sharing  stories that will educate, inform, and entertain our readers to help them be the best pet owners they can be.

We strongly believe an informed pet owner is a good pet owner, and that knowledge is power.
To quote Oprah Winfrey:
  "When you know better, you do better"
Let us know what you think. Share your comments, opinions, and feedback. Tell us what you want to know more about and help us serve you better. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Flickr.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Molly's Road to Recovery

Meet Molly.  She is a 6 year old Bouvier cross who recently tore the cruciate ligament in her knee.  This is a relatively common injury in big dogs and in fact it is the second time Molly has done it (fortunately she only has two knees to rupture!).  It is now believed that there is a genetic factor involved as 40-60% of dogs that rupture one ligament will rupture the second one within 2 years.

The first time around Molly had a traditional surgical repair in which an artificial ligament was placed in the knee.  Since then, surgeons have developed and perfected a new technique called a tibial plateau leveling osteotomy (TPLO).  This surgery involves cutting and repositioning the top portion of the tibia bone thereby changing the angle of the knee joint and eliminating the need for the cruciate ligament.  A metal plate is used to reconnect the bone.  This newer surgery has proven to have excellent recovery times and fewer post-op complications than the traditional repair.

Molly's pre-op xray is used to calculate the current angle of her knee joint

An xray after surgery shows the metal plate and the new configuration of her knee.

Now that the surgery is finished, the real work begins! Molly will require a diligent physical therapy program to ensure she regains full use of the knee and prevent muscle loss during recovery.  Keep watching the blog as we follow Molly through her rehab program here at Royal City.

To learn more about the TPLO procedure click here

Monday, July 16, 2012

Parasite Profile: Roundworm

Roundworms are parasites that live freely in the intestine, feeding off of partially digested intestinal contents. Their name is derived from their tubular or "round" shape. 

How did my pet get Roundworm?
Infected dogs shed the microscopic roundworm eggs in their feces. Other dogs may become infected by sniffing or licking infected feces. Roundworm eggs can also be spread by other animals such as raccoons, rodents, earthworms, roaches, and birds.

Roundworm Lifecylce
What are the symptoms of Roundworm?
Roundworms live in the intestines of infected animals, depriving them of nutrients. A heavy infestation of roundworms can block the intestinal tract. Signs of roundworm infection in dogs include: weight loss, diarrhea, vomiting, malnutrition, and weakness. Infected puppies may have swollen abdomens, the "pot-bellied pup" look that only sounds cute, but is anything but.

How is Roundworm diagnosed?
In puppies, clinical signs such as stunted growth, potbelly, and recurrent diarrhea are a good indication of roundworm infection. Definitive diagnosis is made by microscopic examination of the dog's feces. Roundworms may also be visible in the pet's feces and resemble cooked spaghetti.
How is ROUNDWORM treated?
Your veterinarian has several treatment options for Roundworm that are very effective and safe for treating roundworm.  A frequent de-worming protocol will be recommended by your veterinarian for treating puppies and kittens to ensure treatment is effective. 

Can my dog or cat give ROUNDWORM to me or my family?
If your dog or cat is diagnosed with Roundworm, good personal handhygiene, and environmental disinfection are very important to prevent the spread to humans. Immediately pick up and dispose of all fecal matter that your pet produces to help limit potential reinfection, or the spread to other pets. Any surfaces that can be safely treated with bleach, should be disinfected with a diluted bleach solution (approximately 1/4 cup bleach to 1 litre water), Lysol and other common household disinfectants may also be effective. 

If you have any questions about Roundworm or other intestinal parasites, please contact us at Royal City Animal Hospital at 519-763-4992 for more information. 

Friday, July 13, 2012


Guelph Humane Society
Recently, our friends at  the Guelph Humane Society have been over run with an influx of cats being surrendered. In a 36-hour period this week the humane society had 67 cats come in for adoption, pushing the total number of cats at the Wellington Street facility to 120.

They are having trouble making room for this many cats, and need help to locate homes for them. 
They have recently lowered their adoption fees for cats from $229 to $115. This is an exceptional savings, and quite a deal as all cat adoptions include: spaying/neutering of the cat, micro chip, first shots, flea treatment, deworming and six weeks of pet insurance.

Here at Royal City Animal Hospital, we will be sending some supplies to the Guelph Humane Society to help them deal with the situation as best they can. We will be sending them a large supply of kitty litter, and some kitten food as there are a number of mothers nursing young kittens. 

If you can help in any way, please contact the Guelph Humane Society at 519-824-3091, or visit their website as  they have a 'wishlist' of items they always need, please check it out.
Thank you for helping this wonderful organization continue to do some amazing work. 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Arthritis in Cats

Did you know that it is estimated that 92 % of cats over the age of 12 have osteoarthritis, and that 100% of cats over the age of 15  have osteoarthritis?
Cats are very good at hiding their pain, so how can you tell if your cat has arthritis? 
The following list are some signs that your cat may have arthritis:
  • Inappropriate urination - litter box concerns
  • Limping/lameness    
  • Lack of interest in jumping up 
  • Avoiding Stairs     
  • Retracting from touch     
  • Grouchiness   
  • Change in normal Behaviour
  • Weight loss  
  • Constipation    
  • Vocalization  
  • Excessive Grooming
  • Lack of Grooming   

If you think your cat may be suffering from arthritis, please contact your Veterinarian for more information and a better assessment. There are many treatment options available for your cat to help them deal with the arthritis, and relieve their pain. There are diets specifically formulated to help reduce the clinical signs of arthritis, and decrease inflammation. There are Non-Steroidal Anti-inflammatories drugs(NSAIDS) that your veterinarian might prescribe to help relieve pain and inflammation. There are supplements that can be given (containing Green Lipped Mussel Powder) which also helps reduce the signs of arthritis. As well as other modalities which alone or in conjunction with other treatment options can help your cat feel great and act younger. Before starting any of these treatment options, be sure to consult your veterinarian to work out a treatment plan is the best for your cat's needs.

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Foods You Should Never Give Your Pet

We all love to give our pets a treat once in a while, it is all part of the Human-animal bond that we love to share. What we should be careful of is the foods we often share with our pets.

There are many food items we humans eat that our pets should never get a hold of. Some foods are toxic to pets, some foods cause choking hazards, some foods can cause diseases such as pancreatitis.
Before you give your pet a little snack from the foods you eat, check out this list of the most common household foods that can cause problems for them.
Image courtesy of Royal Canin Canada
As always - consult with your veterinarian if you have any questions about potential dangers of any food items, before you give them or if your pet has eaten anything you are not sure of. In addition, the ASPCA is always a great source of information for pet hazards and dangers.

Monday, July 02, 2012

Hot Cars Kill Dogs

The following video from Dr Ernie Ward demonstrates how hot it gets in a parked car.
Do not leave your pets inside the car on warm days.
Leave them at home where it is cool, comfortable, and safe.