• What Dog Owners Need to Know About Heartworm

    Heartworm disease is a serious diagnosis, but it is both preventable, and often, treatable. The best way to protect your dog from heartworms is to learn about the condition and know when to see the vet in San Jose for diagnosis and treatment. Here is what you need to know. Heartworms in Dogs: Facts and Myths

    What is heartworm disease?

    Heartworm disease occurs when a particular type of parasitic roundworm called Dirofilaria immitis infects the heart of a dog. Heartworms are most common in areas along the Gulf and Atlantic coasts, as well as the Ohio and Mississippi basins, but they can do and do appear in all 50 states. Heartworms are transferred to dogs through the bite of an infected mosquito. They cannot be transmitted by infected dogs to other dogs.

    What are the symptoms?

    Heartworms have a long incubation period, as symptoms do not appear until the larvae transmitted by the mosquito have reached the heart and lungs and grow. This can take six months or more from the time of the bite. Very mild cases of heartworm disease—called Class I—may not cause any symptoms at all. Class II heartworm disease is associated with coughing and new exercise intolerance. Class III is the most severe form of heartworm disease. Dogs with Class III heartworm disease can experience anemia, fainting, rapid heartbeat, high blood pressure, and chronic heart failure. It is important to make an appointment with the vet right away if you see these symptoms. He or she will use a series of tests to determine if your dog has heartworms.

    What treatments are available?

    Heartworm disease requires aggressive treatment in most cases. Your vet may hospitalize your pet to administer a medication called an adulticide to kill the mature heartworms. After the initial round of medication, your dog will need monthly medications at home. For severe cases, surgery is necessary to remove large numbers of heartworms.

    Can heartworm disease by prevented?

    Your vet can prescribe a monthly medication that is extremely effective in preventing heartworm infestations. Heartworm prevention should be part of your regular care plan for your dog.

  • Why Birds Make Good Pets

    If you are ready for a pet but aren’t sure you want to deal with things like spaying or neutering, rounds of vaccinations, and flea medications in Cupertino, then a bird might be right for you. Cats and dogs may be more common, but birds can be great pets for families and single people alike. Could a bird be the right pet for you? Here are some of the benefits of choosing a bird for a pet . pet - bird

    Birds are low-maintenance animals.

    Birds are easy to care for and require very little maintenance. They don’t require walks, they don’t need to be housebroken, and they don’t require trips to the groomer. Keeping your bird’s food and water bowls full, scooping out his or her cage once per day, and trimming his or her nails occasionally are all that is required. Most bird owners also rinse their birds with plain water once or twice per week. Since they require much less maintenance than other pets, birds are ideal for busy families, small children who are learning responsibility, and single people who work long hours.

    Birds don’t need large spaces.

    Unlike dogs and cats, who need space to spread out and roam, birds only need small living areas. Small birds can thrive in tiny cages, which are also ideal for small apartments. Although large birds need bigger cages and like a little more space to explore, they still require much less space than a cat or a dog. This means that they are great pets for any kind of home, from studio apartments to spacious house.

    Birds are inexpensive to own.

    Cats and dogs in particular can be extremely costly to own. In addition to the regular vet care they need, they require special food, vaccinations, grooming, and more. When you live in a rental property, your landlord is likely to charge you a non-refundable deposit and even additional rent in some cases if you have a cat or dog. Birds require much less care, and many landlords don’t charge pet fees for them, so they are easier on your budget than other animals.

  • Does Your Dog Have Allergies?

    Pet owners aren’t the only ones who can have reactions to pollen, dust mites, and other triggers. Your dog can also suffer from allergies to everything from an irritating cleaner on the floor to a flea bite. Giving your dog regular flea medication in San Jose to prevent infestations is helpful. Watch this video to find out what else you need to know about dog allergies.

    If your dog chews at his or her paws, rolls around to try and scratch his or her coat, and persistently licks the same area, allergies could be to blame. Pollen and dust mites are common triggers for dogs. Some dogs are also allergic to fleas and flea bites. If you suspect your dog has allergies, see the vet. Treatments are available to ease the inflammation and keep your dog more comfortable.

  • How to Discourage Puppies from Chewing Your Stuff

    When you bring a new puppy home, you’re probably ready for things like vet visits, spay or neuter operations, and potty training, but you may not be prepared for just how much your pup wants to chew your stuff! Although some puppies are more interested in chewing than others, they all are prone to grabbing a favorite pair of shoes and gnawing them to pieces. When you visit your vet to discuss pet spaying and neutering in San Jose , ask him or her for tips for dealing with destructive chewing. This advice will also help.

    Because puppies explore the world with their mouths, it is not surprising that they do so much chewing. Supervision is critical when your dog is young. Don’t leave your puppy unattended with valuable things—the urge to chew is just too much to resist. If you see your puppy chewing something inappropriately, take it, say a command like “leave it,” and then replace it with something that is OK to chew, like a toy. Bitter apple spray tastes horrible to pups, so a few spritzes can also disrupt chewing. Consistency and patience are key as your new puppy adjust to the rules and grows of out his or her chewing behavior.

    puppies - chewing

  • Warm Weather Pet Pests

    Throughout the year, it’s important to keep up your fight against fleas and ticks. Fleas and ticks can both survive winter temperatures, especially if they are already inside where it’s warm. As spring arrives, you’ll be spending more time outside with your pet, increasing his exposure to these pests. Vacuum your house often to reduce the risk of fleas, paying special attention to areas where your pet spends much of his time. Mow your lawn and prune back shrubs and trees to limit the potential hiding spots for ticks. Talk to your veterinarian in San Jose about putting your pet on a year-round preventative medication, as fleas and ticks can be health hazards as well as general nuisances. Check out this infographic to learn more about protecting your pet from these pests. Please share with your friends and family!

  • Getting Ready for a New Kitten

    It’s always exciting to bring home a new pet. Before you welcome a new kitten into your family, make sure you have the essentials on hand. Your new kitten will need a litter box and litter, a blanket or pet bed, pet carrier, food and water bowls, food, and toys. Place the blanket or pet bed in a quiet room, preferably in a sunny location. Make an appointment with the veterinarian before or shortly after you bring your new furry friend home. A veterinarian in San Jose will let you know when your kitten will need to be spayed or neutered . Spaying or neutering your cat can actually help prevent certain health problems.

    In addition to spaying or neutering your new kitten, your vet will perform a comprehensive wellness exam to make sure your kitten is healthy. Ask the vet about the type and amount of food you should be feeding your kitten. At your appointment, you can also learn about vaccines and feline dental health.

    new - kitten

  • Tips for Taking Care of a Pet Rabbit

    Domesticated rabbits are a joy to care for. Since they do have strict care requirements, you may wish to consult a veterinarian if you’ve never kept a pet rabbit before. A veterinarian in San Jose can advise you about the basics of spaying or neutering, feeding, and housing your new bunny.
    Tips & treatment for rabbits in San Jose, CA

    Spaying and Neutering

    It’s best to spay or neuter your new rabbit not long after bringing him or her home. Spaying or neutering helps protect rabbits from certain health issues and reduces hormone-influenced behaviors. You can transport your rabbit to the vet in the same type of carrier that you’d use for a cat. Make sure it’s large enough, and place some soft bedding and hay in the carrier.


    All pet rabbits must be kept indoors. Although rabbits may enjoy fresh air from time to time, they should never be kept outdoors because of the risk of parasites, diseases, heatstroke, and predators. The mere sight of an approaching predator may inflict enough stress to cause a rabbit to die. Help your rabbit settle into a jumbo-sized cage with a solid floor. Many rabbit owners block off a safe area of the home and let their rabbits roam free during the day. If this isn’t possible, let your rabbit out of the cage for a few hours of supervised playtime each day.


    All rabbits should have access to freshwater and plenty of Timothy hay at all times. Provide Timothy hay-based pellets in the amount recommended by the veterinarian. Your vet can also give you a list of vegetables and fruits that are safe for rabbits to eat. Dark green leafy vegetables are ideal. Fruit should be given in small quantities as occasional treats. Ask your vet for a list of foods that you should never give your rabbit, which includes beans, potatoes, and iceberg lettuce. All rabbits have the desire to chew; it’s a natural behavior. Give your rabbit untreated wood blocks or willow wood rings to keep him or her busy.


    Rabbits are quite fragile and they require very careful handling. Do not let young or irresponsible children handle the rabbit without close supervision. Pick up your rabbit by placing one hand underneath the rump and the other hand underneath the front. Hold the rabbit close to your body. Rabbits often do not enjoy being held; give your rabbit time to adjust to being handled.

  • The Importance of Routine Checkups

    It’s a common misconception that pets only need to visit a veterinarian in Cupertino when they become ill. But actually, regular wellness exams are a cornerstone for good health. Responsible pet owners take their furry friends to the veterinarian at least once per year for a wellness exam . During certain times of a pet’s life, the veterinarian may recommend more frequent wellness exams. vet - visit


    Dogs and cats must receive certain routine vaccinations. Your pet’s vaccinations will consist of core and non-core vaccines. Core vaccines, which include shots for distemper and rabies, are essential vaccines that veterinarians recommend for all pets. Some pets may also require certain non-core vaccines, depending on the breed of pet and your family’s lifestyle. These can include feline leukemia vaccines for cats and leptospirosis shots for dogs. Unfortunately, it’s easy for pet owners to lose track of when their pets need their booster shots. Each time you bring your pet in for a routine exam your vet will review the vaccination record and determine if any shots are needed.

    Disease Detection

    During every wellness exam, your veterinarian will perform a comprehensive “nose to tail” check of your furry friend. The veterinarian will evaluate your pet’s respiration, heart rate, mouth and teeth, weight, and temperature. He or she will check your pet’s eyes, ears, skin, and fur, and palpate your pet’s entire body. Your veterinarian will also carefully observe your pet as he or she sits, stands, and walks. This thorough exam allows vets to detect health problems as early as possible. These can include injuries, infections, swelling, masses, dental disease, and nutritional deficiencies. It’s always best to detect health problems as quickly as possible to improve the chances of restoring pets to wellness. Scheduling routine wellness exams for your pet facilitates the early detection of problems.

    Parasite Control

    Another reason to schedule wellness exams is to improve parasite management. Your vet can look for signs of flea bites and recommend effective, safe flea treatments. Your vet can also provide products for tick control. Parasite management is important throughout the year to help your pet live a long, happy life.

  • Tips for Caring for an Aging Cat

    Cats have different needs and health concerns at various stages of their lives. If you have a senior cat, consider speaking with a veterinarian in San Jose about his or her unique needs and how you can best meet them. Your veterinarian can provide guidance on your cat’s nutritional needs, environmental accommodations, and any medical conditions that may apply. By working with your veterinarian , you can support your cat’s quality of life throughout his or her life. aging - cat

    Wellness Exams

    All pets should visit a vet regularly for wellness exams , but this is particularly important for senior cats. The veterinarian can examine your cat’s oral health and body weight. He or she can check for conditions that often affect older cats, such as arthritis, periodontitis, and kidney, liver, thyroid, and heart diseases. Be sure to share any observances you may have made regarding changes to your cat’s activity level, eating habits, grooming habits, and overall health.

    Dental Health

    Tooth loss is of particular concern for older cats. Some cats may tolerate having their teeth brushed at home. If yours won’t easily allow this, your veterinarian can perform a dental cleaning and you can offer special treats that scrub the teeth.

    Senior Nutrition

    Talk to your veterinarian about your cat’s changing nutritional needs. Your vet can recommend a type and amount of food that can either help your cat gain or lose weight, depending on his or her needs. If your cat has arthritis, he or she may benefit from supplementation with fatty acids like EPA and DHA. Some vets recommend a diet low in sodium for cats with heart disease.

    Environmental Stimulation

    Although your cat may become less active in older age, he or she will still enjoy playing and interacting with others. Look for interactive cat toys such as food puzzles that encourage your cat to gently work the muscles and joints.

    Special Accommodations

    You may notice that your older cat is hesitant to jump on furniture or climb the stairs. This is often due to arthritis. Adjust the living space as necessary to make the environment for comfortable for your senior cat. You may need to place the litter box on the first floor, for example, or place a warm, soft cat bed on the floor if your cat can no longer jump into your bed.

  • Advice for Keeping Your Hamster Clean

    It’s easy to help hamsters stay clean. Your veterinarian serving San Jose can offer advice on how often you should clean your hamster’s cage and what type of bedding to use. You can also help your hamster bathe. It’s critically important to never bathe your hamster in water; this is unnatural for hamsters and can lead to health problems.

    Instead, watch this video or consult your veterinarian for some tips on bathing hamsters. This video demonstrates how to use small animal bathing sand or children’s play sand to make a hamster bath. You can place the sand bath directly in your hamster’s cage and he or she will use it a few times per day. This video also demonstrates how to help hamsters gently massage sand into their backs if they do not readily roll around in the sand. If you have trouble doing this, you can consult your veterinarian.