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Baby It’s Cold Outside! (Antifreeze And Your Pet)

This winter has been warmer than previous years, but the deep freeze is now upon us!! Antifreeze is a necessity at this time of year, but it is important to remember to protect our pets and wildlife from exposure to this deadly toxin.

Ethylene glycol affects the nervous system and causes severe injury to the kidneys. It only takes a small amount to be fatal and the initial signs can be as subtle as looking a bit wobbly, and can be easily missed. Because people may not know their pets have licked antifreeze, they miss these early signs. Pets die every year because by the time they look really sick it is too late to save them. If you suspect your pet may have ingested antifreeze, this is one of the few situations when it is a good idea to go directly to an emergency vet hospital, as they will … Continue reading

Case Report: Injection Site Sarcoma – “Stella Beans”

“Stella Beans”, a sweet and wiggly middle aged kitty, presented to the CWVS Oncology service in February 2019 for evaluation of a mass on the left side of her chest wall. Her family veterinarian suspected a feline injection site sarcoma, a rare type of cancer that can develop in cats at the site of a previous injection such as a vaccine or a microchip. A CT scan was performed to determine the extent of the mass. The external portion of the mass was just the “tip of the iceberg” as the internal portion of the mass extended into both the abdomen and chest and was resting against her lungs and liver. A needle core biopsy was performed and confirmed the suspected diagnosis of an injection site sarcoma.

Stella then had surgery to remove the mass where Dr. King removed a portion of the left chest wall including ribs 9 – … Continue reading

Kidney Cat – the story of Ruckus

Ruckus is a 9-year-old tabby cat who was referred to the Emergency and Critical Care Department for severely increased kidney enzymes due to a left ureteral obstruction. Ruckus had a blocked ureter, which is a tube that carries urine from the kidney to the bladder, because of a stone which caused his kidneys to not function properly, potentially causing irreversible damage. The most common cause of ureteral obstruction in cats is due to calculi which cannot be medically dissolved. The clinical signs can be non-specific and a general unwell feeling which can include lethargy, vomiting and/or decreased appetite.

Ruckus had to undergo two sessions of hemodialysis to decrease and normalize his kidney parameters before he was stable enough to go to surgery (along with having a blood transfusion and further supportive care). Hemodialysis acts as treatment to take over the excretory part of the kidney function. It can be helpful … Continue reading

RVT Month – October 2019

October is Registered Veterinary Technicians month, a time of year when the veterinary community recognizes Veterinary Technicians and their contributions and commitment to compassionate, high-quality veterinary care. This is a valuable time to acknowledge our hard working support staff and to help you learn more about the important role Vet Techs play in veterinary medicine.

Vet Techs are important members of the veterinary health team providing technical support for all aspects of patient care. There are only two accredited programs in BC (19 in Canada), which provide intensive study of the skills and knowledge to work competently as a Vet Tech. These include anatomy and physiology, microbiology, clinical techniques, pharmacology, anesthesiology, surgical and medical nursing, radiology and clinical pathology education.

After graduation, it is important for Vet Techs to maintain certification and registration by successfully completing a national exam and participating in continuing education in the latest medical advances and … Continue reading

Molly And The Bear Attack

Molly and The Bear Attack

In late July on a Whistler trail, Molly and her owner were surprised when they encountered a bear making aggressive noises who then charged towards them. The bear pinned Molly down by her throat.

The owner tried to distract the bear to no avail – it disappeared in the bush carrying and shaking Molly by her neck. The owner thought Molly dead, and walked back to his truck only to find Molly there, albeit bleeding and going into shock.

Molly underwent two emergency procedures that night in Whistler and the owner had been nursing her at home for a week when we heard of their incredible tale and resolve. Molly had made some progress, but there were complications – she was reluctant to walk and carried her head to the right.

 

The big questions that loomed were whether she could make enough of a … Continue reading

Oh Barf: Vomit versus Regurgitation: What’s the difference and what’s the big deal?

There are many, many reasons why our pets may “bring up” something, and it’s easy to assume that what they are doing is vomiting. But what if we told you that in addition to the reasons to vomit, there are many other reasons why they might regurgitate!  Being able to differentiate between vomiting and regurgitation helps us diagnose pets and get them feeling better faster.

Vomit:
To vomit means to force out matter from the stomach through the mouth. It is an active movement in which the abdomen contracts and forces the stomach contents up and out. The material can be an array of colors depending on what was eaten or what the underlying condition is, and can contain some digested food, as the stomach has begun to process it.  The list of diseases causing vomiting includes stomach upset, foreign bodies stuck in the stomach or intestines, pancreatitis, or countless … Continue reading