Chastain Veterinary Medical Group
Welcome to Chastain Veterinary Medical Group! For 20 years now we've been providing advanced veterinary care mixed with old-fashioned compassion for pets in the North Dallas area of Texas.

What's the best Diet for a Companion Bird

Companion birds should be fed a high quality formulated pelleted diet.  We                  recommend Harrison’s Bird Diet (HBD), but there are other good brands as well. While no diet is perfect for all birds under all circumstances, we believe that HBD comes the closest to being perfect for most birds.  

The goal is to have the bird consume ~80% pellets and ~20% fruits, veggies, and table food.  

Birds generally love seeds, but seeds and seed based diets are totally inappropriate for companion birds. Seeds are missing some 21 essential nutrients.  In our experience, getting a pet bird off of seeds and onto a pelleted diet will often double the bird’s lifespan.


What is Catnip and why do cats like it?

Catnip is known scientifically as Nepeta cataria. It is a plant in the mint family (Lamiaceae). Among other things, it acts as an attractant for many cats. 

Interestingly, both domestic cats and larger, wild cats can be affected by catnip. 

Among domestic cats, catnip is used as a recreational substance for the amusement of cat and human alike. As mentioned above not all cats are interested in catnip, but for those that are, the effects can be dramatic. The most commonly observed behaviors after a cat is exposed catnip include flopping and rolling around on the ground, rubbing on the plant, head butting,  pawing at it, sniffing it, licking it, chewing on it, and finally eating some of it. Once ingested, catnip causes various degrees of drooling, lethargy, sleepiness, anxiety, purring and bouts of leaping or jumping about.

Some cats will meow, grumble, or growl. Some will hiss and swat at any people nearby. The more of the substance that is ingested the more the behaviors tend toward hissing, swatting and aggression.

 The main active component of catnip is nepetalactone. It acts as an attractant and is effective on about 50-60% of cats. Some scientists have speculated that the nepetalactone may mimic a naturally occurring feline pheromone of some kind.  

Does your cat show interest in catnip? What does he or she do?


Cat eating grass

3 Signs That Your Pet Needs Emergency Care

Sick dog

Just as with children, it can sometimes be difficult to tell if a pet’s illness or injury warrants a midnight call to the veterinarian or if it’s something that can be put off until the next morning.  However, here are three important indications that tell you your pet needs treatment right now:

1.      Your Pet is Hit by a Car or Suffers a Major Body Trauma

If you saw your dog get hit by a car or a neighbor reports that your cat fell out of a tree earlier that day, then your pet needs to go to the veterinarian immediately.  Even if the animal seems fine, there could be internal bleeding, brain trauma or other internal injuries. 

2.      Vomiting and Diarrhea

As pet owners, we deal with a lot of noxious substances.  In fact, as dogs discuss it amongst themselves, the operative rule seems to be this: Eat first (whatever it is); Vomit it up later if it’s no good.   However, a dog or cat that vomits 3 or more times in an hour, or 8 or more times in 24 hours has got a serious problem. Pets that seriously affected need prompt emergency care because they obviously feel horrible and will soon succumb to dehydration as well – which then makes everything much worse. Same thing if your pet develops vomiting and diarrhea at the same time. That indicates that something is seriously wrong. A pet’s body can’t keep up with fluid losses of that magnitude for long.

3.      Wounds

If your dog or cat comes home covered in scratches or other wounds, then they definitely need to go the vet.  Even if the wounds are surface abrasions, your pet could be in serious trouble.  Rabies, after all, is spread through saliva.  An infected animal doesn’t even have to bite your pet—it just has to sneeze near an open wound. 

If you’re looking for top notch care for your pet, than give us a call.  The Chastain Veterinary Medical Group is a small group of veterinary practices in north Texas that promote pet wellness and provide pet grooming and boarding.  For more information, call Preston Road Animal Hospital in north Dallas at 877-296-5995 or call Meadow Brook Animal Hospital in McKinney at 972-439-1344.

Monthly Grooming Tip From Preston Road's Sherry Siaz!

Dogs should have their nails trimmed on a regular basis, every 3-4 weeks at least.  The regular trimming keeps the feet healthy and will cause the quicks to shrink back.  

Sherry -PRAH Groomer

What Can I do to prepare my pet for breeding?

Here is a brief list of some things you might want to think about: 

  • First, decide if this is really something you want to get involved with. Here are some questions you might ask yourself:
    • Do you have enough time and animal knowledge to get through a pregnancy, whelping, and weaning?
    • Can you afford a C-section for the female dog, if need be?
    • What if your pet has a really large litter of say 8-12?
    • Are you prepared to keep any un-sold or unallocated puppies or kittens?
    • Are you prepared to work if necessary to find homes for all the youngsters?
  • If your goal is purebred puppies or kittens, check with the appropriate breed registry to make sure you have all of the parent’s paperwork in order so that the pups or kittens can be registered
  • Have the male and female microchip, in case one or the other gets separated in transit.
  • Have both prospective parents dewormed.
  • Make sure immunizations for both prospective parents are up to date.
  • Complete all relevant health checks and certifications, such as PennHIP or OFA hip X-rays, elbow scoring, eye/retina scoring etc.
  • Please don’t pre-sell unborn puppies or kittens


Best Friend

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Hours of Operation:

  • 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM Sunday
  • 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM Monday
  • 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM Tuesday
  • 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM Wednesday
  • 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM Thursday
  • 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM Friday
  • 8:00 AM to 1:00 PM Saturday