Veterinary Hospitals

24-hour emergency services

24-hour regular appointments available for clients 

(Askey location only)

Askey: 905-634-9088

Toll Free: 877-573-8838

Treating your pets like family for over 30 years

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Veterinary Hospitals: Full Range of Vet Services in 6 Locations

Find veterinary services for all of your pet’s needs at one of the 6 Veterinary Hospitals serving Burlington, Oakville, Hamilton and surrounding areas. For your convenience and your pet’s good health, our hospitals and clinics offer complete veterinary services. New patients are welcome at all of our locations:

Askey Animal Hospital

3525 Fairview Street
Burlington, ON, L7N 2R4
Phone: 905-634-9088

Brant Animal Clinic

2201 Brant Street
Burlington, ON, L7P 3N8
Phone: 905-336-4002

Speers Road Animal Hospital

1026 Speers Road
Oakville, ON, L6L 2X4
Phone: 905-844-6786

Aldershot/Plains Rd. Animal Hospital

475 Enfield Drive
Burlington, ON, L7T 2X5
Phone: 905-632-2211

Orchard Animal Hospital

2020 Appleby Line, Unit B4
Burlington, ON, L7P 3N8
Phone: 905-634-4526

Waterdown/Carlisle Animal Hospital

245 Dundas Street East
Waterdown, ON, L0R 2H6
Phone: 905-689-5397

Over 30 Years of Veterinary Care


With more than 30 years of veterinary experience, Dr. Gesa Kohn-Gould and staff are dedicated to your pet’s health and comfort. From your cat’s first shots to end-of-life care, every member of the staff acts with compassion, caring and empathy for our animal clients and their human family.

24-Hour, 365-Day Emergency Care For All


Your older cat has an acute asthma attack. Your dog is struck by a car. The staff of Veterinary Hospitals responds to your pet’s medical emergencies with 24-hour care at our Askey Animal Hospital – staffed 365 days a year. You don’t have to be a regular client to use our emergency care services. Reduce your ill pet’s stress; please call to request house call services too.

Bring Us Your Small Animals & Exotic Pets


Each Veterinary Hospitals location works with all types of small animals from the largest dog to the smallest gerbil. We also offer medical and preventive care for exotics from parrots to tarantulas. We are prepared for your animal companion’s health needs. Our veterinary services include:

  • Physical exams & vaccinations

  • Soft tissue, dental & orthopedic surgery

  • On-site laboratory services & radiography

  • Internal medicine & referral services

iguana and parrot

Nutritional Consultations & Pet Foods


Worried that your cat isn’t as agile and sleek as he used to be? Is your dog begging for cookies? Veterinary Hospitals offers nutritional consulting. Our clinics offer targeted life-stage diets for both dogs and cats. Whether your pet needs nutritional support for specific medical conditions or health maintenance, our doctors and staff will provide a diet plan to meet your needs. Our diets are Hill’s Prescription and Medi Cal Royal Canin Prescription diets. We believe these diets to be high quality nutrition for your pet.


Thanks to Dr. Gesa Kohn-Gould (Owner) and Dr. Cherrie Rafuse (at our Aldershot location), we can advise owners of pocket mammals and birds about the best nutrition for their pets.

Prescription Diet®  |  Hill's®  |  Royal Canin®

pet food

Our Pledge for Compassionate Care


As you may be aware, a veterinarian has recently had his license temporarily suspended due to cruelty to the animals in his care. The College of Veterinarians of Ontario (CVO) suspended him for 10 months and have since reduced it to 6 as he has agreed to take a course.

In light of this unfortunate event, we at myanimalhospital.ca assure you that this is an isolated case. People become veterinarians because of their love and compassion for animals, small and large alike. Veterinarians across Ontario are passionate about providing stellar care for your animals and, more often than not, become close to the animals in their care. We as a profession do not condone the abhorrent actions of the veterinarian in question, who is, thankfully, an anomaly.

Furthermore, Veterinary Hospitals, along with staff members, are not satisfied with the punishment levied by the CVO. We contacted the CVO and made our feelings clear that a 10 month suspension is not sufficient to ensure animals in this veterinarian’s care will be free from harm. Be reassured that, as veterinarians, we take our job of caring for animals very seriously, as we know you do as well. Your pet’s health and well-being are not only our main goal. We strive to ensure your pet’s social, emotional and environmental needs are met both in our hospitals and at home.

We would also like to take this opportunity to thank you, our valued clients, for trusting us with your pets’ care and will continue to work hard to provide your pets with superior care. Your pets are your family and we love to see them live a happy and healthy life with their loving families!

Askey Animal Hospital

Askey Animal Hospital

Brant Animal clinic

Brant Animal Clinic

Speers Rd Animal Hospital

Speers Road Animal Hospital

Aldershot Animal Hospital

Aldershot/ Plains Rd. Animal Hospital

orchard animal hospital

Orchard Animal Hospital

waterdown animal hospital

Waterdown/ Carlisle Animal Hospital

New Blog Update!

  • 25/02/2013
    Urinary Blockage in Cats

    Anyone who shares their home with a male cat should be aware of the potentially life threatening problem of urinary blockage. Urinary blockage occurs when mucus, crystals, stones, or spasms block a cat’s urethra preventing him from urinating. Male cats are prone to urinary blockage because their urethra is quite narrow and easily blocked. Urinary blockage is an emergency because the toxins that would normally be expelled in urine build up in the blood stream and make the cat very sick. It is also a very painful condition.


    Early signs of urinary blockage include urinating out of the litter box; frequent trips to the litter box; straining or crying in the litter box; blood in the urine; and licking the genitals. At the later stages of obstruction there will be weakness, abnormal heart rhythm, nausea, and loss of appetite from the toxin build-up. If left untreated urinary blockage will result in a painful death.

    If you think your cat may be blocked, he should be brought to a veterinarian immediately. If a blockage is confirmed, it must be relieved by placing a urinary catheter to re-establish urine flow. Supportive treatment with intravenous fluids is also important. Blood testing and x-rays are necessary to assess for damage to the kidneys and to check for bladder stones.

    Urinary blockage is a very treatable disease if caught early before complications from toxin build-up occur. However, cats that have obstructed are at risk for re-obstruction, and it is important to follow your veterinarian’s instructions for prevention and follow-up urine testing. A canned prescription diet formulated for bladder health is critical to minimizing the risk of recurrence. Efforts should also be made to encourage increased water intake, and minimize stress.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Fleas and Ticks

    After a long and harsh winter, it finally looks as though spring has arrived. Good for us – not so good for our furry companions.


    Warmer weather brings pesky fleas and dangerous ticks, more prevalent in the warmer months because they are able to complete their life cycles faster.

    Fleas and ticks are disease carriers. Fleas can transmit tapeworms and cause itchy allergic reactions, which can lead to scratching, hair loss and infection. Ticks can carry the bacteria that cause Lyme disease, a serious condition characterized by lameness, swollen joints and fever.

    It’s a good idea to groom your pet often and to keep long-haired coats trimmed down during the summer to help with early detection. And while some shampoos and collars are effective at eliminating the infestation, you may end up having to try more than one option to ensure complete elimination. Just be careful when trying out a new method – some pets can have reactions to the ingredients.

    However, preventing an infestation will save your pet, your family and your home from a protracted discomfort, and expense. New medications prevent infestations before they start by killing the adult insects or by keeping their eggs from hatching.

    If you have questions about what method might be right for you and your pet, call a clinic near you today!

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  • 25/02/2013
    GDV: What You Should Know

    Gastric dilation and volvulus (GDV), or commonly known as the “bloat," is a life-threatening medical emergency that can occur in dogs. The stomach may rotate out of its normal position, becoming twisted or “torsed.” This condition is a true emergency. Radiographs confirm the diagnosis and emergency surgery is the only treatment option. 


    Certain breeds, notably Great Danes and Standard Poodles are at higher risk of GDV. However, this condition can occur in any breed. Other risk factors include feeding once daily meals, feeding from an elevated bowl, very thin dogs, rapid food consumption and exercise right after meals.

    What to look for: a distended stomach, restlessness, excessive drooling and unproductive retching or gagging. With any of these clinical signs contact your veterinarian or an emergency hospital immediately.

    How can this be prevented? Feed at least 2 meals per day, preferably presoaked food. Use a food bowl that slows down eating and restrict exercise to at least 1-2 hours after meals.

    High risk dogs such as large and giant breed dogs are considered good candidates for a procedure called a gastropexy. This is a low-risk surgery that can be performed at the same time as your pet's spay or neuter and involves anchoring the stomach to the body wall to prevent the life-threatening torsion. The Great Dane Club of America recommends this to all its members.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Household Dangers for Pets

    There are many dangers lurking in your house that may put your pet at risk. It is important to be aware of these dangers so that you can help minimize risk and keep your pet healthy and safe.


    Physical dangers include anything your pet can chew or eat that is not intended for them such as paper products, elastic bands, yarn or thread, home renovation products, etc. Even some items intended for pets may cause choking hazards and should be used with caution. Make sure pet toys are the appropriate size for your pet, larger dogs can choke on toys intended for smaller animals.

    Medicinal products intended for people must be kept locked away from your pets as it only takes a small quantity of human medication to cause problems for your pet.

    Some foods that are toxic to pets are chocolate, raisins, onions, macadamia nuts and artificial sweeteners. Cleaning products can cause internal and external injuries and should be stored out of your pet’s reach. Pesticides and insecticides are also dangerous to pets. Be aware of outdoor weed and pest control in your immediate area. Also keep your pets away from slug bait, rat/mouse poison and mothballs. There are also certain plants that are toxic to pets.

    For a complete list please visit the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association website. Pet Poison Helpline® has more information on what to do if you think your pet may have been poisoned. Or call the Pet Poison Helpline at 1-800-213-6680. There is a $35 incidence fee.

    If you are concerned that your pet has come in contact with something potentially harmful, please do not hesitate to call your veterinarian.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Dog Parks

    Dog parks are an excellent way for your dog to get some freedom, exercise, and playtime with doggie friends. Here are some tips to make sure your dog park visits are a safe and fun experience for everyone.


    The first rule is simple: if your dog does not like other dogs, then it does not belong in a dog park! The dog park is not an appropriate place to socialize fearful or aggressive dogs. Rather, the overwhelming experience will just reinforce to your dog that other dogs are scary and no fun to be around.

    Dogs that frequent the dog park should be up-to-date on vaccines. Flea prevention and regular deworming is also a must. Make sure to pick up after your dog immediately to prevent the transmission of intestinal parasites from fecal material.

    Before entering the dog park, take a moment to observe what is going on. If you are uncomfortable with the dynamic of the dogs inside, return at another time. Your dog’s first dog park visit should be at a quiet time. This will prevent your dog from being overwhelmed. It is dog park etiquette to call your dog away from the entrance when new dogs enter so that the new dog is not greeted by a mob causing it to feel threatened.

    Puppies should not go to dog parks. Puppies will be at risk of picking up parasites and diseases like parvovirus, since they are not fully vaccinated and have immature immune systems. As well, puppies will not be fluent in ‘dog speak’ and may inadvertently cause fights when they are rude to older dogs. A puppy’s smaller stature and immature musculoskeletal system make them prone to injury when rough-housing with larger dogs. If a puppy has a bad experience with other dogs during their sensitive period they may grow up not liking dogs at all. The best way to socialize your puppy with other dogs is at a positive-reinforcement based puppy class where play and control exercises are balanced. Another good way to socialize your puppy is with friendly, well-behaved dogs belonging to friends and family members.

    Your dog should come reliably whenever you call him before you even consider taking your dog to the dog park. It is embarrassing and frustrating to have to chase your dog all over the park when it’s time to leave!

    Never take your eyes off of your dog. If your dog is being bullied or being a bully he or she should leave the park. Not all dogs like each other. If a particular mix of dogs is not working out, it is best to leave before there is a problem. We regularly treat minor bite wounds from dog park disagreements, but if there is a large size difference between dogs, more serious injuries can be incurred.

    Have fun with your dog at the dog park, but remember to keep safety in mind.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Heartworm Disease

    Heartworm disease is a potentially fatal, but easily preventable, parasitic disease of dogs and occasionally cats.


    Heartworm is transmitted by infected mosquitos when they bite a dog, thereby depositing the heartworm larvae directly onto the dog’s skin. Adult heartworms can live for 5 to 7 years in a dog. The presence of the worms cause inflammation and damage to the blood vessels of the lungs, as well as increase the risk of blood clots.

    The heartworm test used at our hospitals involves a blood test, the results of which are received in approximately 24 hours. If the test is negative, you will not be contacted and may go ahead and administer heartworm preventive to your dog as directed.

    There are many safe and effective heartworm preventives available. To be effective they must be administered once a month during heartworm season – June 1st through to November 1st. This is the period of time when mosquitoes capable of transmitting heartworm are active. The preventives work by killing heartworm larvae before they mature into adult heartworms.

    We have a number of heartworm preventive options available at our clinics. Call today to book a heartworm screening for your dog.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Diabetes in Your Pet

    Diabetes is a common disease in both people and pets. Diabetes is caused by a deficiency of insulin, a hormone excreted by the pancreas that regulates sugar absorption and utilization. If there is a deficiency of insulin relative to the amount of glucose (sugar), it accumulates abnormally and diabetes occurs.


    The increased levels of unused glucose are excreted in the urine, causing more frequent urination and thereby increased consumption of water by your pet. Thus, the main signs are excessive thirst and urination. Other signs include weight loss, reduced appetite, and eye cataracts.

    If you notice your pet drinking and urinating more, or feeling unwell, diabetes may be the cause. A veterinarian should examine your pet as soon as possible. A full physical exam will be initiated; blood and urine samples will be taken. If glucose builds to dangerous levels, the resulting alterations in metabolism can result in a life threatening state, with weakness, nausea and possible coma. This warrants immediate attention.

    Treatment consists of twice-daily insulin injections which your pet will tolerate readily. A special diet will also be prescribed. Follow up appointments for blood glucose checks are needed while your veterinarian regulates how much insulin is required. It is important to follow the diet, exercise and treatment protocol prescribed by your veterinarian in order to increase your pet’s chances of success. Many pets can live an active, quality life with diabetes.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Behavioural Problems in Pets

    Dogs and cats can be affected by many different behavioural problems that cause aggression, anxiety, inappropriate soiling and property damage. Problems of this nature are the main reasons why so many pet owners become frustrated and many animals are surrendered to shelters. Most behavioural problems can be avoided by early socialization training.


    Some behavioural problems are due to an underlying medical condition. Pain and disease can affect the interaction between the pet and their owner. Your veterinarian will need to provide a complete medical examination to address any medical issues that may manifest themselves as a behavioural abnormality. For example, a cat that urinates on the carpet may be suffering from a urinary tract disease and may not be able to get to the litter box in time. Likewise, a dog that nips when he or she is picked up could be suffering from abdominal pain or arthritis.

    If your veterinarian’s examination determines that there is no underlying medical cause, the problem may be exclusively behavioural. Depending on the nature of the problem there are several treatments combined with training techniques that could help, and oral treatments that range from nutritional supplements to drugs which affect brain chemistry.

    A detailed discussion of your pet’s behaviour with your veterinarian will help determine the most effective treatment for your pet.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Puppy Wellness

    Now that you have decided to get a new four legged family member, determined the breed and where to get it, you need to know what the next step is.


    The first thing you should do is take your new puppy along with a stool sample to your veterinarian and have it checked out. A physical exam will be performed and the doctor will discuss all aspects of puppy wellness with you including proper nutrition. Puppies require core vaccines at 8, 12 and 16 weeks of age. Some breeders or pet stores will vaccinate their puppies at an earlier age (and advertise that their puppies had their “first shots”) but those vaccines are generally not effective since the puppy’s immune system is not mature enough to mount an immune response. Clients are often concerned about over vaccinating their pets but it is imperative to have the three part series starting at 8 weeks of age. If not done properly the puppy will run the risk of not having enough immunity to fight off the parvo or distemper virus if encountered. We see many cases of parvovirus infection in young dogs in our hospitals. This disease is devastating, being very costly and having a 30% – 40% mortality rate despite the best treatment.

    Proper vaccination eliminates this risk. All puppies will receive one Rabies vaccine around 4 months of age that is very effective. The veterinarian will determine together with you which vaccines are needed for your new puppy based on lifestyle and exposure. If, for example, you would like to go to dog parks, your dog requires regular grooming or needs to go boarding because you are travelling, you may want to consider the bordetella 4 to reduce the incidence of kennel cough . It comes in two forms - an injectable that needs to be boosted in four weeks or an intranasal form that is effective for a year if given once. There are a few other vaccines that may be necessary for your puppy.

    Deworming is absolutely essential for all puppies. It needs to be done from 8 weeks of age every 2 weeks until 5 months old. The biggest public health risk poses roundworms that can be transmitted from the mother to the puppy while still in the uterus. This disease can be transmitted to people and can cause blindness, especially in children. The days of dogs only being outside are over and given the close contact we have with them, deworming should not be optional. People will often say that their dog does not have worms but you can’t always see them in the stool. That is why you need to take the sample to the veterinarian and have it checked under the microscope.

    The first 6 months of a puppy’s life are expensive with vaccines, deworming, spays and neuters, but just like with babies, after the first year, that will change.
    We strongly encourage clients to take out pet insurance since we see many problems, notably swallowing of foreign bodies, and accidents in young puppies that can get very costly.

    We give out a comprehensive puppy information package at the first visit with many tips on training, feeding, wellness, etc.

    I hope this will give an overview of puppy care. The doctor and staff at our animal hospitals are trained to help you with all aspects of puppy care. Don’t hesitate to call and ask questions. We love talking about puppies!

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  • 25/02/2013
    Christmas Hazards

    With the Christmas season rapidly approaching, it is easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the holidays and not pay any attention to what our pets at home are getting into. Alcoholic beverages, salt, chocolate, and mouldy or rotten foods are some of the top dangers our pets can digest.


    There are other pitfalls for our pets this holiday season. Feeding fatty foods can cause potentially deadly inflammation of the pancreas; human foods can also cause diarrhea and vomiting. Cooked bones are also a hazard because of the risk of them breaking or splinter which can cause internal puncture. Do not leave chocolate hanging from the Christmas tree because it is highly toxic to animals. We all know little critters are very curious when it comes to new smells and it is tempting for them to get into it.

    It’s not just food that is the culprit. Christmas ornamental plants such as mistletoe, poinsettias, holly, lilies, and Christmas trees can be dangerous too. Pets, especially cats, will try and climb up these holiday plants, so make sure they are properly anchored and fenced off. All the fallen tree needles can get stuck in the paws of animals and their throats if digested. Electrical cords and flashing tree lights need to be covered up so your animals can’t chew on them and get electrocuted.

    For your own piece of mind, keep your vet’s poison control and animal emergency clinic phone numbers on your fridge for quick reference. For any questions or emergencies, Askey Animal Hospital in Burlington is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year for your convenience.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Your Pet’s Pearly Whites

    Dogs need dental care too! Unfortunately, dental hygiene for dogs is sometimes overlooked but is just as important to their overall health as nutrition, proper exercise and routine grooming. As well as causing bad breath, plaque and tartar can cause bacteria to spread throughout the body. Organs affected are the liver, kidney and heart. Diseased teeth may also be a source of pain that your pet is unable to demonstrate to you.


    Studies show that almost all pets over the age of 3 have some form of dental disease so catching teeth problems early will help avoid severe dental disease. Your veterinarian will examine your dog’s teeth during routine examinations. If dental cleaning is warranted, this will be done under a general anesthetic. Loose and diseased teeth will be extracted. While anesthetized, your pet will be monitored and given intravenous fluids. In many cases, antibiotics are given during the procedure so you may be sent home with them. If teeth are extracted, pain management medications will also be sent home.

    However, the best medicine is prevention! Your new puppy should be trained to tolerate daily brushing with a soft brush and pet-friendly toothpaste. Toothpaste suitable for people cannot be used. Another important method of prevention is a prescribed dog food developed to clean the teeth while they eat. It is also important to note that bones, tennis balls, rope toys and sticks can break teeth and damage the natural defenses of the gums.

    Maintain your pet’s healthy smile! Have their teeth checked at every annual veterinary visit, and get into a routine of brushing and diet.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Lyme Disease

    Lyme disease in dogs can be a nasty, debilitating condition. Caused by the bacterium borrelia burgdorferi transmitted by the blacklegged tick, symptoms include fever, swelling of joints, lameness, depression and loss of appetite.


    Animals that normally inhabit brush and forested areas may be infected with borrelia. These animals can transmit the bacterium to a feeding tick. An unsuspecting dog can then be infected while walking through the tick-infested area. Migrating birds have also been found to be responsible for passing the disease agent to previously unaffected regions.

    Factors to consider in determining if your dog is at risk include walking in parks and forested areas and travelling to Cottage Country or down south.

    Two important strategies in the prevention of Lyme disease are vaccination and tick control. A yearly vaccination protocol will help stimulate protective antibodies and booster immunity against the disease. At the forefront of prevention is tick control. It is easy to administer and highly effective. In addition to transmitting Lyme disease a single tick can also transmit other disease causing agents, such as those responsible for canine ehrlichiosis and anaplasmosis.

    A discussion with your veterinarian about risk factors and prevention will determine the best strategies to prevent Lyme disease from affecting your family pet.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Our Cat Came Back

    It’s true! Even animal hospitals lose their cats. But thanks to a tiny microchip, Mary Kate, the clinic cat at Askey Animal Hospital, was returned home to us last year. She slipped out during our renovations in May of 2010. We searched everywhere for her but she was nowhere to be found. While we panicked, she happily received food all summer long from a very kind gentleman who thought she was a feral cat.


    As the temperature dropped, the man began to feel concerned that she wouldn’t make it through the winter so he brought her to the Burlington Humane Society on 740 Griffith Court. As is the policy at most shelters, she was scanned for a microchip. And Bingo! Our cat came back!

    Microchips are no bigger than a grain of rice and are growing in popularity. In addition to shelters and veterinarians most kennels, breeders, trainers, rescue groups, farms, animal clubs, and pet stores use microchips. The other forms of identification including name tags and tattoos can easily get lost or missed when your pet is brought to a shelter. If your pet turns up at the animal shelter and its nametag has fallen off or the shelter employee overlooks the number tattoo you may never see them again. However a microchip contains no battery. It is activated only when scanned.

    If you have any questions about microchipping, please call your vet.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Senior Pets

    The longer our pets live with us, the more we love them. The bonds with our senior pets run especially deep. We want to provide the best care we can, without feeling that we are putting them through unnecessary stress or procedures.


    Luckily your veterinarian has the ability to provide many diagnostic procedures which are minimally or completely non-invasive. Regularly scheduled examinations can provide your veterinarian with the opportunity to detect diseases early, before clinical signs become evident. The early diagnosis of some common aging problems can greatly improve our older pet’s life span, and more importantly the quality of their lives as they age. Drawing a small amount of blood is a simple procedure for most dogs and cats and can provide important information about our older pet’s health. Lumps and bumps may appear on our pets that can be tested to be sure that they are not cancer. Urine tests, radiographs and ultrasounds are other non-invasive tests that are readily available.

    Dental care is important throughout our pet's life, but even more so when our pets are older. Neglected dental disease can cause oral pain and can cause damage to other body organs. In recent years diets made specifically for senior pets have been developed to address the changing nutritional requirements associated with aging. Newer medications to treat arthritis have greatly improved the lives of many senior dogs as well as cats.

    Senior pets are special and with improved care and nutrition, we can keep them healthy and happy for as long as possible.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Spay and Neuter Your Pets

    The most commonly recognized benefit to spaying and neutering your pet is in reducing the burden of unwanted dogs and cats that overwhelm the resources of animal shelters all over the world. Spaying is a surgical procedure that removes the female internal reproductive organs and their associated hormones.


    Neutering surgically removes male external reproductive organs and hormones as well. In addition to the obvious role in controlling the pet population, there are other medical benefits to having these procedures performed.

    Female dogs are particularly prone to developing infections of the uterus. Uterine infections are commonly named the “silent killer” since the dog may suddenly become extremely ill with no warning symptoms. Mammary tumors are also commonly found in unspayed dogs. Female cats are susceptible to these same diseases.

    Male dogs that are not neutered are susceptible to disease of the prostate as well as tumors in the anal area in their senior years. Male cats that are not neutered are commonly seen in emergency visits after traumatic fight wounds.

    Spaying and neutering also controls behavioural aspects associated with mating. Many animals are harmed after escaping the safety of home in their attempts to roam and search for a mate. This unfortunately leads to many accidents and missing pets.

    Your veterinarian would be happy to discuss all aspects of spaying and neutering and the benefits to both you and your pet.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Tapeworms

    Tapeworms are a common worm found in pets. While there are several types of tapeworms and the method of transmission can vary, the common tapeworm starts life as an egg passed in the dog or cat’s feces.


    The egg is eaten by a flea or louse and develops into an intermediate stage, called a cysticercoid. This is the infective stage. The dog or cat then eats the flea and becomes infected. The cysticercoid develops into the adult tapeworm and the cycle starts again.

    Tapeworms affect your pet’s health and are harmful to humans too. When a human accidentally ingests the eggs (handling a pet without hand washing, digging in infected soils, eating uncooked meat) the eggs circulate in the human’s body. The ingested cysts can do harm to many organs, and in some cases this can be fatal.

    Common ways for your pet to get tapeworms are by having fleas (and ingesting the flea host during self-grooming) and hunting small prey. While flea prevention serves many purposes cats and dogs that hunt and ingest prey are at high risk.

    Standard stool testing will not show tapeworm segments. Sometimes you may notice rice like segments on bedding, pet’s stool or near the rectum. If you think your pet may have tapeworms, or if your pet hunts regularly, have your veterinarian check for segments and dispense an appropriate treatment.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Seeing Is Believing

    Seeing is believing in your pet’s food. Your veterinary team is a good source for pet health information, including nutrition. Nutrition is an important part of a veterinary practice as it impacts the health and well-being of your pets.


    Cats and dogs have different nutritional needs as they develop and age. Your kittens and puppies require special nutrition for growth during their first ten months. At 10 months, kittens and puppies transition to an adult food. At age 7, your pet becomes a senior, and again food requirements change.

    Dr. Gesa Kohn-Gould has been practicing in Burlington for over 30 years and has seen wonderful progress within the pet food industry. An extensive number of diets are available to prevent and treat diseases, benefiting the quality and longevity of your pet’s life. Food suppliers have invested a great deal of time and effort to develop pet foods that address kidney disease, arthritis, weight management, and everyday dental issues. These are only a few of the products available within the extensive line of foods dealing with your pet’s health.

    Understanding your pet’s food is a start to good nutrition. Talk to your vet today.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Raw Food

    What is the best food to feed your pet? While the opinions for pet owners range from raw to cooked meat, commercial dry to canned food, the answer is a personal choice.


    While dogs are classified as carnivores, nutritionally they are omnivores. So when feeding your four-footed friend it is important to consider a complete and balanced diet. Diets made at home are not likely to be nutritionally complete or balanced for your dog unless they are properly formulated in consultation with a pet nutritionist.

    While it is true that dogs and cats are less susceptible to illness from bacteria in raw meats than humans, they are not entirely immune. And raw-fed dogs shed pathogenic bacteria at significantly higher rates in saliva and feces, thus posing a risk to humans. Dogs often lick their owner’s hands and faces and can potentially cause infection for salmonella and E. Coli to name a few. Dogs live significantly longer lives today in no small part due to excellent nutrition provided through commercial diets.

    If you wish to feed your pet an unprocessed diet, work with your vet to ensure that it is balanced. Long-term feeding of a raw food diet may cause a strain on the kidneys due to excess protein. The easiest way to provide a balanced diet is to feed your dog commercial canned or dry food. The key is to choose responsibly. But there are still many very good dry brands from which to choose.

    There is so much information out there it can be hard to know what to choose. Your veterinarian has your pet’s best interest at heart.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Pet Insurance

    While over 70% of households in North America have one or more pets, the majority of these pets are not covered by an insurance policy. Insurance can be a valuable tool to assist owners with the costs associated with pet care, especially in the event of an accident or illness.


    There are a number of different types of insurance coverage. Some policies cover routine healthcare such as annual examinations, routine wellness blood work and vaccinations. Illness coverage reimburses for costs associated with diagnosis and treatment of a medical disorder, and accident or injury coverage is designed to cover the costs associated with injuries such as fractured bones or wounds.

    As veterinary medicine evolves and treatments become more sophisticated, the cost of pursuing the ideal treatment for a major illness can escalate significantly. Appropriate insurance coverage allows both your veterinarian and your family to focus on the best course of action for your pet while reducing the financial impact associated with advanced medical care.

    When choosing an insurance company and the proper coverage, ask your veterinarian for recommendations. Depending on age, breed and gender, pets may be more predisposed to certain medical disorders and this may influence what type of coverage is ideal for your family. Pet insurance is all about peace of mind, and with the rapid advancements in veterinary medicine it is a valuable tool to protect the head of the household – your pet, of course!

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  • 25/02/2013
    Pet Allergies

    Does your pet scratch, lick or chew itself? Does your pet shake its head and have dirty ears? If so, your pet may be suffering from allergies. Pet allergies can be seasonal, environmental or food related.


    Seasonal allergies are currently at their peak. Pollen from grass, trees and plants stick to hair coats, causing allergic reaction on the skin, which can erupt into secondary bacterial skin infections. Occasionally only one area of the skin is involved that your pet will chew and lick resulting in a “hotspot.”

    More frequent bathing will help eliminate pollen from your pet’s hair coat. If full bathing is not possible, take a damp cloth and wipe your pet’s hair coat down, paying specific attention to the feet and muzzle. Another temporary solution for some dogs is to wear a lightweight coat to keep pollen off the body.
    Flea allergies are very common at this time of year. Make sure your pet is protected from fleas by using the appropriate medication recommended by your vet.

    Environmental allergies come from pollutants in the air. These can be inhaled or contacted directly, resulting in itchy skin, as well as eye, ear and breathing problems. These types of allergies are more difficult to protect our pet from.

    Food allergies in dogs and cats are much more common now than a decade ago. Signs that your pet may have food allergies can range from itchy skin, recurring ear infections or digestive problems. Seek help from your veterinarian who will establish a diet plan to determine what foods are best for your pet.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Pets and Arthritis

    Have you noticed that your pet seems reluctant to go up or down the stairs? Seems to sleep more and play less? Seems stiff or limps occasionally? In older pets, these signs are typically said to be due to old age, but they could be signs of arthritis. 


    Arthritis is a degenerative disease that can affect any joint. In dogs, many of us have heard of “hip dysplasia” which can lead to arthritis in the hip joints, even in young dogs. Other common areas of arthritis in dogs are the elbows, knees and hocks. Cats can show more subtle signs of arthritis but older cats often have arthritic changes in their spines and hocks.

    The good news is that there are many treatments available that can help alleviate the chronic pain of arthritis, increase mobility and improve the quality of life in our pets. Usually a number of treatments are used in combination including weight loss, nutraceuticals (such as glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, omega three fatty acids), and even physiotherapy. Special prescription diets have been created that have been shown to help in many cases. Newer non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs have been developed that are safer for long-term administration in dogs and cats than those that were available to us in the past.

    The kindest thing we can do for our pets is keep them comfortable. Your veterinarian can help to distinguish between arthritis and other diseases that could cause similar signs, and advise you of the best choices for you and your pet.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Adopting a Puppy

    Bringing home a new puppy is a very exciting experience, but since this will be a long-term commitment it is important to start off right.


    It has become quite popular to purchase puppies through Internet advertising forums. When purchasing your new furry family member in this manner, ask some critical questions before you even go to visit the puppies. It can be difficult to avoid making an emotional decision while surrounded by adorable bundles of joy. A good breeder will want you to visit the puppies and their mom. The father may not be on the premises, but the breeder should have pictures and health information available. Breed-specific health testing should have been performed prior to the breeding, and the clearances should be available for you to view. The puppies should ideally be home raised and handled daily as early socialization is critical to proper development. Red flags are not being allowed to see the mother or area in which the pups are housed; multiple litters of different breeds on the premises; unsanitary conditions; fearful or anti-social pups or parents. Furthermore, a responsible breeder will also want to ask you questions to ensure their pup is going to a good home. Most good breeders will also agree to take a puppy back should things not work out.

    Responsible breeders do not sell their puppies to pet stores or dog brokers. In fact, many of the best breeders do not even advertise as there is a waiting list for their sought-after puppies. Many puppies sold on the Internet and in pet stores come from mass puppy producers, but claim that they are home-raised. Although it is tempting to rescue the innocent puppy with pleading eyes, making that purchase further perpetuates the cruel puppy mill industry.

    Remember to consider your local humane society, animal shelter, or rescue group as there are many wonderful puppies and older dogs waiting for their forever homes. Breed rescues in particular will be quite familiar with their wards and can help fix you up with your perfect match.

    We love talking about and working with puppies, so if you have any questions about selecting your new family member please give us a call.

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  • 25/02/2013
    Traveling With Your Pet

    Summer time is here at last! Many of us will be taking time off work for family vacations. Naturally, most of us will want to include our furry family members in vacation plans.


    Start the trip off right by making sure your pet has all the necessary vaccines and certificates, heartworm and flea prevention, and any prescribed medications. An identification collar with your pet’s name, address and phone number is a necessity.

    If you are taking your pet on a road trip, a pet carrier or safety harness will keep them safe in the event of sudden stops or changes in directions. Never leave your pets in a parked vehicle, even with the windows open as they can overheat in minutes, causing heatstroke or death. Bring along your pet’s regular food to prevent tummy upset. Medications are available at your veterinarian’s office if your pet experiences car-sickness.

    Pets traveling by air are normally placed in the baggage compartment, although some airlines allow pets in the cabin as long as they are small enough to fit under the seat. Booking direct flights at non-peak hours will help to minimize your pet’s time on the plane. Properly sized, clearly marked carriers are important to keep your pet comfortable. Sedatives are available however, they should be used with caution, since they can interfere with your pet’s ability to regulate internal temperature and can affect blood pressure in some circumstances.

    Enjoy the summer and have a safe and happy vacation!

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