• Tips for Keeping Your Pet Calm During a Vet Visit

    No matter how much you love your pet’s veterinarian, there’s a good chance that your animal isn’t fond of his or her visits to the pet hospital. Fortunately, if your pet experiences anxiety when it’s time for a vet check-up, there are several things you can do to make appointments more comfortable for him or her, not to mention for yourself and your vet. Try this advice for making your pet’s next animal clinic visit less stressful.

    Consider the Carrier

    Not all pets have to ride to the vet in a carrier, but if yours will be confined to one for his or her vet appointment, re-introduce it well before the big day. Get the carrier out about a week before your appointment, and leave the door open. Put some treats and toys inside, and let your pet get used to going in and out of it. Make it comfortable with a towel or some bedding, and consider using a calming pheromone spray inside it. Once it’s time to put your pet inside for your vet visit, the carrier won’t seem so scary anymore.

    Drop by to Say Hello

    Did you know that you can swing by your vet’s office between appointments? Periodically drop in at the animal clinic with your pet in tow to say hello. A lot of people do this. Give your pet a chance to hop up on the scale, and of course, to get a treat or a good ear scratching from the clinic staff. Your pet will get used to the smells and sounds of the office on these low-key visits, so that his or her own check-ups won’t feel so foreign and scary.

    Ask Your Vet

    For some pets, getting over anxiety about vet visits isn’t a simple process. If your pet won’t adjust to pet clinic appointments, ask your vet about sedative medications that could help. With these meds, your pet will feel relaxed during appointments, so the whole process is faster and more comfortable.

     

    The friendly team at Chastain Veterinary Medical Group always works to make pets and their parents feel welcome and at ease at our animal clinic in Dallas. Make an appointment at one of our AAHA-accredited animal hospitals by calling (972) 239-1309 for Preston Road Animal Hospital in Dallas, or by calling (972) 529-5033 for Meadow Brook Animal Hospital in McKinney.

     

  • Promote the Long-Term Health of Your Dog by Scheduling Annual Checkups

    One of the most important things you can do for the health of your dog is to bring him or her to the veterinarian for regular checkups. During these preventive care appointments, your veterinarian can spot early signs of potential medical problems that could help your dog get treatment he or she needs to stay safe and healthy.

    During an annual checkup, your vet will examine your dog’s coat and skin, check his or her weight, and evaluate his or her teeth for signs of tooth decay and gum disease. Your vet may also perform blood tests to look for indicators of medical problems and provide vaccinations that are right for your dog’s stage of life. These visits to the animal clinic are invaluable in helping pet families understand the best ways to care for their dogs so that they stay happy and healthy for life.

    Whether you need a wellness exam for your dog, dog teeth cleaning, or dog boarding, Chastain Veterinary Medical Group can be your partner in protecting your pup’s good health. To make an appointment at our McKinney/Frisco animal hospital, please call (972) 529-5033, or to make an appointment at our north Dallas animal hospital, please call (972) 239-1309.

  • Easy Ways to Get the Most Out of Your Vet Visit

    Vet visit dallas

    Going to the veterinarian is an important part of being a responsible pet owner. When you attend a regular checkup for your pet, a little preparation can help you and your pet get the most out of the visit. Use these strategies for ensuring that your appointments are as helpful as possible.

    Bring the Relevant Info

    Expect your veterinarian to ask you questions about your pet’s medical history, eating habits and so on. It can be helpful to bring a list of medications you regularly give your pet, such as flea and tick control, as well as list of the foods and treats he or she eats. If it is your first time at a new animal clinic, make sure your pet’s records have been transferred as well. When you’re sharing information with your vet, be honest. It’s important for your veterinarian to have an accurate idea of how many treats you give your pet or if you may have missed a dose or two of medication.

    Use a Leash or Carrier

    At animal clinics, pets find themselves in close quarters with fellow patients who are unfamiliar to them, and that can be scary. Keeping your pet restrained will ensure her safety as well as that of the other patients in the clinic. If your pet is particularly fearful or is known to be aggressive, alert the vet in advance, so that you make the appropriate arrangements.

    Take Notes

    Before your appointment, it can very helpful to write down questions you want to ask. During the visit, jot down information that your veterinarian shares so that you don’t forget it. This will help you ensure that you’re dosing medicine correctly and following all of the advice that your vet has shared.

    At Chastain Veterinary Medical Group, we’re committed to helping your pet have the happiest, healthiest life possible. To make an appointment at either of our AAHA-accredited Pet Hospitals, please call (972) 529-5033 for Meadow Brook Animal Hospital in McKinney, or to make an appointment at Preston Road Animal Hospital in north Dallas, please call (972) 239-1309.

  • Questions That Every Pet Owner Should Ask Their Veterinarian

    vet dallas

    Regular visits to the veterinary clinic are part of keeping your pet happy and healthy for life. You can be proactive about caring for your pet by asking your veterinarian certain questions about your animal’s health during your visit. Keep your pet as healthy as possible by asking these questions at your next appointment.

    Is my pet overweight?
    Just like their human family members, pets are living with an obesity crisis in the U.S. In fact, the Association for Pet Obesity and Prevention reports that more than 50% of U.S. pets are overweight. Being overweight can lead to significant health problems for your pet, from arthritis and joint pain to cancer. Your veterinarian can help you make a plan to increase your pet’s amount of exercise and to select weight-friendly foods, so that your pet can drop the extra pounds and reclaim his or her health.

    Are my pet’s teeth healthy?
    Dog and cat teeth cleaning is an important part of their overall well-being. However, many pet families don’t realize that their pets need dental care, which may explain why 80% of dogs and 70% of cats over three years of age have periodontal disease. Oral health problems can cause your pet pain and lead to systemic health issues, so getting on a teeth cleaning schedule is essential. Your vet can recommend ways to brush your pet’s teeth at home and may recommend periodic deep cleanings performed at the animal hospital.

    What is this strange lump?
    Pets develop benign lumps and skin changes as they age, but don’t assume that any such change in your pet is normal. Your veterinarian should check out all masses and skin changes to make sure they are not cancerous. If your vet is suspicious, he or she will perform a biopsy and help you decide what steps to take next.

    We welcome all of your questions about your beloved pet when you visit Chastain Veterinary Medical Group in Dallas. Whether you need preventative care or emergency vet services, you can contact us today by calling Preston Road Animal Hospital in north Dallas at (972) 239-1309 or by calling Meadow Brook Animal Hospital in McKinney at (972) 529-5033.

  • Should You Consider a Pet Snake?

    Pet snakes are a definite departure from the usual choice of a dog or a cat, but is a snake the right pet for you? Although pet snakes may not require tasks like walking, spaying, or neutering, they do require special care, including a veterinarian who is able to provide exotic animal care. If you are intrigued by the idea of adopting a snake but aren’t sure if you are ready to make the leap, here is what you need to know.

    Not all snakes make good pets.

    If you decide to get a snake, it’s important to ensure that you get the right one. People who are new to handling snakes usually do best with corn snakes, ball pythons, and kingsnakes. These snakes tend to be the most amenable to handling and easiest to care for. If you choose to get another kind of snake, be sure to do your research first. Even if a breed is relatively tame, their size as an adult could be an issue. Venous snakes and large constrictors are never good picks—especially for people who are who new to caring for snakes—and, please, never capture a snake and try to make it your pet.

    You will need to handle your snake frequently.

    Snakes aren’t naturally cuddly, but they do still need to be handled frequently when they are kept in captivity. Doing so makes them more comfortable with being touched, so you can feed them, remove them from their cage for cleaning, and do other things necessary to care for them safely. Snakes can carry salmonella, so wash your hands thoroughly after handling your pet. Although bites are rare, they are possible, so move slowly to pick up your snake, handle him or her gently, and clean any bite that does occur with soap and water. Deep bites need medical attention.

    Your snake will need veterinary care.

    Not all veterinarians are willing to treat snakes, and fewer still are trained in caring for snakes. Contact several veterinarians near you before you buy your snake to ensure that you can get vet care for your pet when you need it.

    Chastain Animal Medical Group welcomes exotic pets like snakes in our pet hospitals in Dallas and McKinney. To learn more about our exotic animal care services, dial (972) 239-1309 for Preston Road Animal Hospital in north Dallas or dial (972) 529-5033 for Meadow Brook Animal Hospital in the McKinney/Frisco area of Texas.

  • Taking a Look at Our Life Guardianship Trust

    At Chastain Veterinary Medical Group, we are committed to helping our community help animals get the love and care they need. Our Life Guardianship Trust for pets is designed to meet this goal. Through the generous donations of our clients and other animal lovers in Dallas and McKinney, our veterinary hospital is able to provide much-needed care to animals in crisis.

    The money in the Life Guardianship Trust is used to provide veterinarian services to homeless pets and wildlife and to help families whose pets need critical care that they cannot afford. The fund is also used to improve the quality of care we provide to our clients. We invite pet lovers to contribute to the fund at any time.

    Finding out more about the Chastain Veterinary Medical Group and the services at our veterinary clinics in Dallas and McKinney is super easy. Simply call (972) 239-1309 for Preston Road Animal Hospital in Dallas or call (972) 529-5033 for Meadow Brook Animal Hospital in McKinney, for more information.

  • Veterinary Spotlight on Cytopoint

    Itchy pups are commonplace in the animal hospital, and sometimes, finding the right treatment can be frustrating. Because itching has so many different possible causes, your veterinarian is often left using trial and error to find the right itch treatments for your pet. Further, some pet owners aren’t happy with the prospect of giving their dogs medication to deal with itching. Fortunately, a new alternative is available: CYTOPOINT. CYTOPOINT is safe, effective, and fast-working, so your dog feels more comfortable immediately and you get a break from listening to the constant itching and biting.

    What is CYTOPOINT?

    CYTOPOINT is an injectable immunotherapy treatment that mimics the natural immune response in dogs to disrupt the cycle of inflammation and itching that is associated with atopic dermatitis in dogs. Unlike drug treatment, CYTOPOINT is highly targeted so that its impact on broader immune functions is limited, and it is eliminated from the body through normal product degradation pathways. That means that liver and kidneys are not involved in metabolizing CYTOPOINT, as they are with drug treatments for itchiness.

    How quickly does CYTOPOINT work?

    CYTOPOINT begins working within 24 hours of receiving a single injection at the animal hospital in 80% of dogs. The relief lasts for four to eight weeks. During this period of itch relief, damaged skin has time to heal, which can help to make itching less intense in the future. After the CYTOPOINT injection wears off, dogs can get a repeated dose. CYTOPOINT testing has shown it to be safe and effective for long-term use.

    Are there any side effects?

    The side effects associated with CYTOPOINT are minimal. Some animals experienced slight increases in attacks of diarrhea, vomiting, and alopecia, but these incidences resolved without vet treatment. Less than 2% of dogs in trials of CYTOPOINT had any adverse effects.

    To find out if CYTOPOINT could be right for your dog, make an appointment at Chastain Veterinary Medical Group in McKinney today. A veterinarian can make a diagnosis and determine the best plan for treating your pet’s excessive itching. To schedule an appointment at our pet hospital today, call (972) 239-1309 for Preston Road Animal Hospital in Dallas or call (972) 529-5033 for Meadow Brook Animal Hospital in McKinney.

  • What to Expect When Your Pet Needs Surgery

    Pet parents never want to think about their beloved animal undergoing surgery, but sometimes it is necessary to treat an illness or injury. At every turn, your veterinarian and the staff at the pet hospital will be available to explain the process for you and address your concerns. If your pet is scheduled for surgery, here is a look at what you can expect.

    Pre-Operative Prep

    Before your pet undergoes his or her procedure, your veterinarian will take every possible precaution before surgery to ensure that your pet is healthy enough for anesthesia and recovery. This will typically include a physical exam, blood work, and ECG screenings. These tests help your veterinarian make the right decisions about the type of anesthesia to use and which medications may be necessary before and after surgery. If the surgery is a planned procedure and not one that is the result of an emergency, be sure to follow all pre-op instructions and to bring your pet in for appointments and screenings as necessary to avoid delays in the surgery. For emergencies, these pre-op tests will be performed immediately before surgery.

    Surgical Procedure

    During surgery, your pet will receive the type of anesthetics that the veterinarian has determined are appropriate for him or her. The procedure itself will, of course, vary depending on the problem that is being treated. Your veterinarian will explain what the procedure will entail and how long you can expect your pet to be in surgery.

    Post-Operative Recovery

    After surgery, your pet will recover in a specialized area of the pet hospital while being closely monitored by veterinary nurses as he or she recovers from the anesthesia. He or she will also receive pain medication as needed. When it’s time for your pet to go home, you’ll receive medication and home care instructions. You may also make a time for a return visit for a checkup.

    Chastain Veterinary Medical Group understands how overwhelming pet surgery can be, and we strive to give every pet family the best possible experience. When your pet needs surgery, schedule a consultation with one of our veterinarians in Dallas or McKinney. Call Preston Road Animal Hospital in north Dallas at (972) 239-1309 or call Meadow Brook Animal Hospital in the McKinney/Frisco area at (972) 529-5033.

  • The Importance of Fur De-Matting

    When your pet’s fur becomes long, it also becomes prone to tangles and matting. Matts can appear on the outer coat, where they are easy to see, or in the undercoat, where you may not notice them. Regular pet grooming is an important part of preventing matting in your pet.

    De-matting your animal as part of a regular pet grooming schedule will keep your pet comfortable and help to prevent health problems. Matted fur can be extremely painful, and the skin underneath matts can form sores and other irritations. Sometimes, debris becomes tangled in matts and further irritates your pet skin. During grooming, de-matting can be done gently to reduce discomfort for your pet. Brushing your pet regularly between pet grooming appointments will reduce the risk of matts.

    At Chastain Veterinary Medical Group, we are pleased to offer pet grooming in McKinney and Dallas by professional groomers who can remove matts while protecting your pet’s delicate skin. To make an appointment for grooming or to learn about other services we provide at our pet hospitals, call (972) 239-1309 for Preston Road Animal Hospital in Dallas or call (972) 529-5033 for Meadow Brook Animal Hospital in McKinney.

  • Questions to Ask Your Vet About Your Dog’s Behavioral Issues

    Every puppy is born with his or her own unique quirks, and a combination of instinct, environment, and training adds to that to produce patterns of behavior as he or she grows into an adult dog. Although nearly every dog has a few behaviors that the rest of their family could do without, how can you tell when your dog is just being mischievous and when you should be concerned about his or her behavior? If you’re worried about problem behaviors in your pup, ask your veterinarian these questions during your next appointment.

    When should I be concerned about my dog’s behavior?

    In most cases, behavioral problems are a concern in dogs when they put your pet or your family in danger. Behaviors such as obsessive biting and chewing of paws can cause injury and infections in your dog, while aggressive behavior means that your dog could injure you or even a stranger. These behaviors should all be reviewed with your veterinarian as soon as possible. Fearful and anxious behaviors should also be discussed with your veterinarian, as they can either indicate an underlying medical issue or simply be causing your dog to suffer.

    What kinds of treatments are available?

    Pet behavioral problems are best handled on a case-by-case basis. For some dogs, attending a training class may be all that is needed. Other dogs can benefit from working with a veterinary behaviorist. In some cases, dogs may need to take medications to ease anxiety and obsessive behaviors. Your veterinarian may recommend combining multiple treatment approaches to get the best results.

    Can I prevent behavioral problems in my dog?

    Early and consistent training can help to prevent behavioral issues in some cases. However, it is not always possible to prevent behavioral problems. Some dogs are predisposed to certain behaviors and conditions. Having a dog that needs behavioral help does not mean that you’ve been negligent as a pet parent.

    Don’t hesitate to discuss any concerns you have about your pets’ behavior with your veterinarian at the Chastain Veterinary Medical Group. We’re here to help your pet maintain the best possible health with preventative care, including pet dental services and treatment for acute and chronic conditions. Make an appointment today by calling (972) 239-1309 for Preston Road Animal Hospital in Dallas or by calling (972) 529-5033 for Meadow Brook Animal Hospital in McKinney.

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