Dog & Cat Wellness Care
Ongoing wellness care for pets is the most critical way to ensure that your pet remains healthy throughout their life. We recommend regular cat and dog exams, routine vaccinations, dental examinations and teeth cleaning, spay and neuter, dietary maintenance, and more to help us keep tabs on your pet’s ongoing wellness. As your pet ages, we strongly recommend a geriatric blood profile for all pets over 8 years of age. This gives us a good baseline of blood values to compare as your pet ages. Our veterinary team is always available to answer your questions about pet care and offer you our expertise when you are in need of information. We are committed to being your veterinary resource.
Preventive care is the most important part of your pet’s lifelong health. Keeping your pet protected from pests and diseases is essential if your pet is to lead a long and healthy life. We recommend flea and tick preventative, supplemented with a Lyme disease vaccine if your pet spends a lot of time in tick-heavy areas such as the woods. Ticks have to feed during all four cycles of their life, and will perch on the ends of leaves and blades of grass so they can easily climb on board their next host. Fleas, like ticks, also have four life cycles: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. Their entire life cycle can take anywhere between 2 to 4 weeks, and during their pupae stage, they can’t be killed. If you suspect that fleas are present in your home, we recommend using an area treatment spray for your carpets and furniture.
We also recommend regular ongoing heartworm preventatives and annual heartworm tests. Heartworms are spread through infected mosquitoes, and once in the bloodstream, will travel to the heart and make themselves at home in the pulmonary arteries. Heartworm disease can be fatal if left untreated, so be sure to keep them on heartworm preventative all year round.
For more information about how heartworms can affect your pet or the benefits of a preventative treatment, read Dr. Forrester’s article “What Dog Owners need to Know about Heartworms.”
We have a variety of preventative heartworm options available for pets with different needs and lifestyles. These include:
- ProHeart injection (Heartworm preventative only, no internal parasite or flea prevention)
- Trifexis (Heartworm, fleas, intestinal parasite preventative in an oral tablet)
- Sentinel Spectrum (Heartworm, fleas, and intestinal parasite preventative, sterilizes female fleas, in a beef chewable)
- Advantage Multi (Heartworm, fleas, and intestinal parasite preventative in a topical medication)
- Iverheart Max (Heartworm and intestinal parasite preventative in an oral tablet)
Microchipping your pet is so important! A microchip offers the only permanent form of identification available for pets, and will allow them to remain connected with you even if their collars and ID tags have been removed. Statistics show that one out of every three pets will be separated from their families at some point in their lives, and this applies to indoor pets as well. For this reason, we recommend that every pet be ID’d with a microchip. We provide information about registering your microchip to ensure that your pet is always connected with you, and we keep records of your pet’s microchip number at our hospital, just in case.
Vaccines are important for keeping dogs and cats protected from disease. Our cat and dog vaccinations are administered on an individual basis, determined by the needs and lifestyle of each pet. At Green’s Creek Veterinary Hospital, we offer a range of vaccines to keep pets in Dublin and surrounding areas healthy and protected. Visit with us to discuss your pet’s individual vaccine plan today!
Core Cat Vaccines
Some diseases are considered such a threat to pets and the population at large, that they are classified as core and are administered to all of our patients:
- FVRCP: Covers Rhinotracheitis, Calici, Panleukopenia, and is given at 6 and 9 weeks.
- Rabies: The feline rabies vaccine is first given between 8 to 12 weeks old and readministered every year.
- FeLuk (feline leukemia) for kittens: Due to the risk leukemia poses to kittens, this is a core vaccine.
Noncore Cat Vaccines
Though no less important than core if your cat meets the criteria, noncore vaccines are only recommended based on lifestyle and additional risk factors:
- FeLuk for adult cats: Highly recommended for any indoor/outdoor cat.
Core Dog Vaccines
It has only been through the responsible use of vaccines that some serious diseases have been controlled. Due to how contagious and common they are, rabies and canine distemper vaccines are core. Therefore, we administer them to all of our dog patients:
- Rabies: Protects your pet from the very serious threat of rabies. Erath County is always one of the most endemic counties in Texas for rabies-positive cases. The vaccine should be given at 15-16 weeks of age. We give a 1-year vaccine.
- DAPP (canine distemper): Covers Distemper, Adenovirus Type 2, Parainfluenza, and Parvovirus (aka the “puppy shot”). We give 2 rounds of DAPP and 2 rounds of DHLP at 6, 9, 12, and 15 weeks. After that series, pets should remain protected for about 1 year after.
Noncore Dog Vaccines
When we consider risk factors that your dog’s individual lifestyle can lend, we may recommend certain noncore vaccines:
- Leptospirosis: The bacteria that causes leptospirosis are spread through the urine of infected animals, which can get into water or soil and can survive there for weeks to months. Many different kinds of wild and domestic animals carry the bacterium. We typically give the leptospirosis vaccine with canine distemper, known as the DHLP combination shot.
- Bordetella (Kennel Cough): Required for grooming/boarding. Offers immunity to Adenovirus type 2, parainfluenza, and Bordetella bronchiseptica. Given at 12 weeks or older. Pets need one vaccination and a follow-up booster 21 days later. This vaccine should last for about 1 year.
- Lyme (Borrelia Burgdorferi Bacterin): Given at 16 weeks and older; needs one shot and then needs to be boosted in 21 days. Good for 1 year.
- Rattlesnake (Crotalus atrox): Given at 16 weeks and older and then boosted in 21 days. This vaccine is good for 1 year.