We always recommend and utilize the use of anesthesia for all dental procedures.
There are always risks when using an anesthetic, however, these risks are outweighed by the fact that this makes all procedures safer for your pet, safer for the vet, and ensures efficacy. Attempting procedures without anesthesia can present other dangers to the animal or vet. Especially when work needs to be done under the gum line, any movement could mean harm to your pet from our dental equipment.
After all, your pet cannot have a reasoned discussion with our staff the way you can with your dentist. Procedures are likely to make them afraid, and they will probably try to get away. Animals who are in pain will act defensively and are likely to bite. Even when they're healthy, most animals cannot hold still enough or hold still long enough for procedures like X-rays to be completed correctly.
Advances in the latest anesthetics mean that for most normal procedures, your pet can go home on the very same day. Your pet may remain groggy, but behavior should return to normal the next day.
The procedures we use to treat your pet's mouth are very close to the procedures a dentist uses for you. An examination is performed before any procedure.
Your pet's health is as important to us as it is to you. That's why we provide a full offering of dental procedures. These include:
Scaling (removal of plaque and tartar above the gum line)
Cleaning plaque and tartar below the gum line
Examining below the gum line for signs of disease (X-ray)
Endodontic therapy (Root canals)
Periodontal disease treatments
Extraction of teeth or dental pulp
Oral cancer or cysts treatment
Cleft palate treatment
Tooth abscess treatment
Our goal is to help every pet owner achieve the best relationship with their pet. We can offer advice and training tips on housetraining, anxiety, phobias, and inter-pet interactions. In certain cases, we may recommend a board-certified behavior specialist for more detailed or in-depth training information. We strive to make our clinic as fear-free as possible for all pets.
Don't ignore your pet's bad breath! Dental hygiene is often the cause of stinky breath, and it may indicate other important problems with your pet's health. We understand how easy it is to miss. Many of the problems that stem from poor hygiene occur where you can't see them - below your pet's gum line.
The first line of defense is always home care. But while some animals (especially dogs) tolerate their owners handling their mouths and brushing their teeth, most (especially cats) will struggle or act out. That can always make oral care difficult at best, and ineffective at worst.
The best way to ensure your pet's oral health is to have regular cleanings at our office. Discuss how often you ought to come in as well as a home hygiene regimen with your vet. This will also prevent dental issues from progressing to larger (and potentially deadly) internal issues, such as dysfunction or disease in the heart, kidneys, liver, or lungs.
In the wild, hiding pain, illness, or other weaknesses are survival instincts. Many times, your pet will have the same instincts, even in the safety and comfort of your loving home, so always keep an eye on your pet's eating habits and behaviors. Recognizing the difference between normal changes in mood and red flags can be difficult sometimes.
What you interpret as a persistent grumpiness may actually be a sign that your pet is in pain.
New irritability, shying away from being touched (especially on the face and around the mouth or throat), sluggishness, loss of appetite or difficulty eating, and lethargy are all behavioral signs which may indicate illness.
However, if you note any of the following physical changes, contact your vet immediately:
Red and swollen gums
Bleeding gums, especially when eating or when having teeth brushed
Swelling around the mouth
Loose or missing teeth
Crusted build up at the edge of the gums
Persistent bad or fetid breath
Remember, preventing oral infections and disease will help your pet live a longer, healthier life. Furthermore, caring for your pet with regular cleanings now will save you money later. In 2013, VPI Pet Insurance priced the cost of treatment for dental diseases at more than $530 on average. Our prices for regular cleanings are much less than that!
Accidents and illnesses are often unavoidable. We offer many emergencies and critical care services during our normal business hours. After hours, we may need to refer to an emergency care center so that the pet can receive the best of care. One of our veterinarians is on call after hours, or other options include the Purdue University Animal Emergency Clinic (765-496-7911) or the University of Illinois (217-333-5300).
Our clinic maintains a supply of veterinary approved medications for preventive care as well as sick patient care. We also partner with Vets First Choice online pharmacy for any needs our clinic pharmacy cannot meet.
Our doctors and staff can help with concerns about your animal’s quality of life. There are many different questions when your pet is terminally ill. We are available to help you answer those questions and guide you and your pet through this difficult time.
Our in-clinic laboratory allows us to run many tests, which can provide immediate answers for clients and pets. We also partner with outside laboratories for more extensive testing and for specialized test that cannot be performed in clinic.
Did you know that despite doing all we can to keep our animals safe, approximately one in three pets in the United States will become lost at some point during their lifetime? This is a scenario that no caring and committed owner wants to think about, but by understanding that it is something that could happen, we can take prepare for the eventuality. One of the best ways of doing this is by microchipping your pet.
Many owners are quite content with using collars and tags as identification for their beloved animal. While microchipping isn’t intended to replace this traditional and highly successful practice, it can complement it. Microchips are placed under your pet’s skin and, at the same size as a grain of rice, they are impossible to locate precisely once they have been inserted. This makes them tamper-proof and accident proof. While conventional tags and collars can be removed by thieves or can fall off, microchipping is permanent.
Studies have shown that microchipping is also a much more effective and efficient way of reuniting pets with their owners and animals who are microchipped are significantly more likely to make it back home. Since many animals look alike, ownership disputes are a fairly common occurrence in neighborhoods where there are a number of pets of the same type and breed. However, microchipping can also prove invaluable when it comes to proving who the rightful owner of your pet is. Although having your details on the chip is not proof of ownership, disputes nearly always go the way of the person who registered with the microchip provider.
Pet microchipping is a fast, painless process that is no different to your furbaby receiving a vaccine. The microchip itself is contained within a glass capsule no larger than a grain of rice. This is implanted under the skin, usually between your pet’s shoulder blades. Once in place, it can be left for the duration of your pet’s lifetime.
Each microchip contains just two pieces of information. These are a unique reference number and the name of the microchip provider. When a lost pet is found, a veterinarian, shelter or other professional with access to an RFID scanner will be able to scan the area between the shoulder blades to check for the presence of a microchip. The scanner will activate the chip, which is otherwise dormant, and the unique number and the name of the microchip provider will be displayed on the scanner’s screen. The service scanning the animal can then contact the chip provider to obtain the personal information relating to that unique reference number which is contained on a secure database. Finally, the owner can be contacted and told that their pet has been found.
Naturally, many people are concerned about the safety of their personal information. Rest assured that microchip providers invest a great deal of money and expertise into their security systems and there are protocols in place to ensure that no one can access your personal details without bypassing stringent security measures. You can also choose how much information to give your microchip provider, with many owners choosing only to divulge their name, city and contact number to minimize the risk of identity theft.
Although there is slight risk associated with any surgically implanted device, the microchip used contains no moving parts and lies dormant until it comes into contact with an RFID scanner. Contrary to what many people believe, there is no evidence at all to support the theory that pet microchipping causes the development of any health problems at all and experts agree that the benefits of microchipping animals far outweigh the miniscule risks attached to the process.
If you would like to arrange an appointment to get your pet microchipped, or if you have any further questions about the process, please don’t hesitate to contact our offices.
There are so many diets available with a wide variety of ingredients, and not all diets are created equally. Sometimes it can be very difficult to decide what is best for your pet. We have research-based information that can help provide the best nutrition for any stage of life or medical condition. We can help you navigate through the tremendous amount of marketing information that is available.
In our efforts to provide quality, compassionate care, we help you recognize signs of pain in your pet. Recognizing and controlling pain has a great impact on your pet’s ability to recover from surgeries or illnesses, or to live with chronic pain (such as arthritis). We want the best quality of life for your pet.
Parasites are all around us and can cause obvious clinical signs such as diarrhea, coughing, and itchy skin. They can also carry and spread diseases such as heartworm disease, Lyme disease, Bartonella, Ehrlichiosis, and tapeworms. Many parasites can be easily prevented with monthly medication – thereby preventing the spread of disease to your pet as well as to you and your family members. Annual heartworm/tick blood tests and fecal exams help ensure the health of your pet and everyone around them.
Puppy and kitten care should start around eight weeks of age. All puppies and kittens need a comprehensive exam. We can advise you on the best vaccine and parasite prevention protocol for your pet. Often there are questions about behaviors in puppies and kittens. It is best to discuss those early in life to improve your relationship with your pet.
Radiography is a way of taking a picture of the inside of an animal’s body. Many times a radiograph is referred to as an X-ray. Taking a radiograph is a painless procedure, and can provide important information to help in the diagnosis and care of your pet.
Pets age at a much faster rate than we do. With the aging process come many changes including nutritional needs, mobility, and medical needs. Medical conditions can change rapidly which means your pet may need more frequent exams or diagnostic tests. Our goal is to help your pet live as comfortably as possible.
Our practice offers a variety of soft tissue surgeries including spaying, neutering, mass removal, and more complex surgeries. We monitor all patients before, during, and after any surgical procedure. All patients receive pain management and post-operative care instructions.
Orthopedic surgeries are a specialty best performed by board certified surgeons. If your pet requires orthopedic surgery, we will refer you to a specialist.
Many diseases are much less common today because we have been able to vaccinate our animals. This protects both animals and humans. Even though those disease occurrences are less, vaccines are still very important. After a thorough exam and a discussion about your pet’s risk for disease, we can formulate an appropriate vaccination schedule to keep your pet healthy.
During a wellness exam, not only do we give your pet a complete exam, but we also ask about their nutrition, exercise, behavior, and activities. This is also a great time to screen for parasites such as heartworms, tick diseases, and intestinal parasites. It is possible with a wellness exam that we may find signs of illness in an earlier stage which potentially increases the success of treatment.