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8 Things you can do to protect your dog in summer. 

  1. Never, ever leave your dog in the car;
  2. Make sure your dog has unlimited access to fresh water;
  3. Make sure your dog has access to shade when outside;
  4. Take walks during the cooler hours of the day;
  5. When walking, try to stay off of hot surfaces (like asphalt) because it can burn your dog's paws;
  6. If you think it's hot outside, it's even hotter for your pet – make sure your pet has a means of cooling off;
  7. Keep your dog free of external parasites (fleas, ticks) and heartworms – consult your veterinarian about the best product for your pet;
  8. Consider clipping or shaving dogs with long coats (talk to your veterinarian first to see if it's appropriate for your pet), and apply sunscreen to your dog's skin if she or he has a thin coat.


It's very important for puppies and kittens to receive a thorough exam each time they come in for routine vaccines. They should receive their first exam and initial vaccines between 6 and 8 weeks of age.  We check for birth defects, developmental concerns, retained baby teeth, retained testicles, and hernias, among other concerns. We can help advise you on house training, leash training, feeding schedules and all of the questions that come up when you're raising a puppy or kitten.

Your pets physical examination includes:

  • checking all vital signs
  • examining the teeth/eyes/ears
  • listening to the heart & lungs & abdomen
  • palpating the abdomen for any abnormalities
  • searching for lumps, bumps, enlarged lymph nodes
  • checking the skin and fur
  • evaluating the pet for orthopedic soundness
  • observing their behavior

Another equally important part of your pet's examination is the interview with you, his owner. You know your pet better than anyone else, so you are the best source of information for his usual daily habits:

  •  how much is he eating, drinking, urinating, defecating?
  •  Does he play with his toys?
  •  Have you noticed an odor lately?
  •  How is his housetraining?
  • Can he go up the stairs/jump on the bed/jump in the car?

Armed with this information, plus the information from the physical exam, the doctors of Nassau Animal Hospital can diagnose developmental concerns and health problems in your pet early, which means a longer, more comfortable life for your pet, more peace of mind for you, and lower veterinary bills!

Infectious tracheobronchitis, more commonly known as “kennel cough,” is a respiratory infection most commonly caused by the bacteria named “Bordetella” . Dogs with this disease typically have a hacking cough and sound like they are trying to clear their throats. It’s similar to bronchitis in humans. Dogs often remain active and maintain a normal appetite despite frequent coughing fits. However, in some animals it has the potential to become much more serious.

 Why is Bordetella vaccination required for boarding?

  • Bordetella is very contagious between dogs.
  • An animal’s respiratory system may be more susceptible to this infection because of: shipping stress, crowding stress, heavy dust exposure, cigarette smoke exposure, infectious agents (including the distemper/flu viruses), cold temperature or poor ventilation.
  • Dogs usually become infected when visiting kennels, dog parks, shelters, groomers, training classes or where dogs congregate.

 Is Bordetella serious?

  • Bordetella can be very serious for young dogs, elderly dogs, and those with compromised immune systems from chronic diseases. Infections can progress to pneumonia which may be fatal.
  • Bordetella may be accompanied by at least one other infectious virus such as canine distemper, canine herpes or canine influenza (Dog Flu).
  • Most cases require antibiotic therapy and cough suppressants to resolve.

  What are my vaccination options?

  • The standard injectable vaccine is given in 2 parts. It’s a good option for puppies as long as two doses are given approximately 3-4 weeks apart. Boosters are given annually.
  • An oral vaccine may be given as early as 3 weeks of age. The advantage over injectable may be that the local immunity is stimulated right at the mouth and nose where the natural infection would try to take hold.
  • Oral vaccine generally provides faster immunity than injectable, taking four days to generate a solid immune response. It is a modified live virus and may occasionally give the dog a mild case of kennel cough.
  • If boarding is planned and more than six months have passed since the last vaccination, a booster should be given five days or more before the start of boarding. Good kennels requires this for all guests!
  • Vaccine is not useful in an animal already infected with kennel cough. Wait till the infection is cleared up before vaccinating!

I have been around dogs all of my life.  I have been blessed to have had some amazing companions walk beside me through some really tough times and also share with me some of my happiest moments.  Each of my dogs has taught me lessons on how to be a better person.  I’d like to share a few of them with you;

  • EGO-there’s just no need for it…Life is better without it.
  • Be still and observe.
  • When the wind blows, put your face towards it and feel it.
  • Light up when you see people you care about. Greet them as if you were “wagging your tail”.
  • Do not judge. It’s not your job.
  • No self loathing. Learn the lesson, feel it, grow from it and do better next time.
  • Without self doubt you can overcome anything.
  • Forgiveness.
  • Find joy in everything that you do. Even if it’s just sitting on the couch with a friend.
  • Express your gratitude for this life every chance you get
  • Be present.. always

If we could master these few characteristics our dog’s possess just think how unstoppable we would be

In your lifetime, there are 23 different doctors who can or will take you from birth to death: the obstetrician, pediatrician, orthodontist, endodontist, dermatologist, internist, surgeon, radiologist, anesthesiologist, gynecologist, endocrinologist, psychiatrist, urologist, neurologist, psychoanalyst, pulmonologist, oncologist, ophthalmologist, nutritionist, cardiologist, gastroenterologist, geriatrist, and pathologist. Veterinarians need to know about all of these areas of animal medicine in order to take care of animals.

Because of the bond that forms between people and their pets, the demand for greater diagnostic capabilities to diagnose and treat ailments has developed. The result is a much more thorough diagnosis of our pets that can lead to more successful treatments or management of their illnesses. This means that pets have a greater chance of living longer, quality lives with us, their human companions

You are the first line of defense for the health and well-being of your pet. Our pets can’t talk, so they rely on us to notice the changes in behavior – sometimes very small changes – that can signal that they don’t feel well. If you think there may be something wrong with your pet, there is no substitute for a careful examination by your veterinarian. Veterinarians are trained to recognize and interpret the symptoms that signal an illness or injury. Please call us right away if you have an urgent animal care question.

Here are a few safety tips:

Bring all of your pets inside before the noise starts!  Some pets may prefer to remain outside, however for this night, it is recommend keeping them indoors. Fireworks, noisemakers and other loud sounds often scare pets into trying to escape and they may run and hurt themselves in the process.

 Secure your pets in a safe room or keep them close by you. Even if your pets love to be part of the action, this is the time of the year when pets sneak out the front door when guests come in. Keeping your pets in a room with the TV or radio on may help fuse out some of the commotion occurring outside. Consider setting up a pet safety place where your pets can escape from holiday hubbub, complete with a cozy bed, fresh water and food.

 Also, consider microchipping your pet. They can get lost in the rush of the holidays and chipping them will improve your chances of finding them. Put on their collars and make sure their tags are up to date before the celebration begins. Have their microchip checked by their vet and update their contact information if you've moved or changed numbers. Call us to learn more about the benefits of microchips.

Some pets who have severe noise phobias may benefit from medications to calm them. Please call with any questions.

Catnip is crafty, just like its namesake. It has both euphoric and calming properties. It wakes up the nervous system, and also turns it right down. It’s a cool herb, with a veritable feast of uses for our feline friends! A member of the mint family, catnip has been used medicinally for over 1,000 years. It has a variety of names: Nepeta cataria, catmint, catnep, catswort, field balm and menta de gato. Catnip tea was a popular drink in England until black tea was imported from China. Catnip may stimulate the appetite, aid digestion, help calm nervous animals, encourage restful sleep and/or cause temporary agitation and aggression.  Catnip is rich in iron, selenium, potassium, manganese, vitamins A and C, and also contains magnesium, phosphorus, calcium, chromium, sodium and B vitamins.

Do not give to cats with seizure disorders!

You probably knew that the high season for ticks runs from April to November. But did you know experts recommend year-round preventives because infections can occur at any time of the year? Like ticks, we’re also active year round and ready to help protects pets anytime!

Myth: No woods or trees, means no ticks on your four-legged friends. Fact: Ticks live on the ground no matter the locale. They typically crawl up grass blades onto a host. Sorry, but no city slicker cat or dog is safe.

Who’s still removing ticks with a lit match? Yeah, that’s a surefire way to help the tick deposit more disease. The best way to kick the tick? Grasp it as close to the skin as possible with tweezers and pull the tick’s body out with a steady motion.

Has your dog been tested for tick-borne diseases this year? Let our in-hospital  test do some detective work so you can tick that off your worry list.

Lethargy. Excessive thirst. Frequent urination., Weight Loss

If your pet is displaying any of these common signs, he or she may have diabetes.
If you didn’t know your dog or cat could develop diabetes, you’re not alone. Many owners don’t realize diabetes can affect pets too, so learning that your dog or cat has the condition can leave you with many questions. While there’s no cure for diabetes, proper care can help your pet live a happy, healthy, active life. The more you know about diabetes, the better you’ll be able to work with your veterinarian to successfully manage your pet’s health. Your veterinarian is an essential partner in your pet’s diabetes care. Only your veterinarian can diagnose diabetes and provide appropriate preventive and management programs.

If your pet has been diagnosed with diabetes, use this checklist to make sure you get your questions about diabetes answered and learn what you need to know to successfully manage the disease. Fortunately, with appropriate treatment, pets with diabetes can enjoy long, healthy lives.

  1. Will I need to give my pet injections? How often?
  2. Can I continue to feed my pet the same food? Will treats still be allowed?
  3. Can I still take my pet for walks? Is activity important?
  4. With appropriate treatment, will my pet be able to live a normal life?
  5. Is my pet at risk for other medical conditions?
  6. What should I do if my pet is not behaving normally? What signs should I be concerned about?
  7. Are there any side effects of treatment?
  8. Do I need to measure my pet’s blood sugar?
  9. How often will I have to bring my pet to the Vet's for a check- up?

REMEMBER: If your pet is diagnosed with diabetes, there’s no reason to worry. With appropriate treatment and regular visits to your veterinarian, your pet can lead a healthy life for years to come.

The approach to a health problem is based on training, experience and probability.  Some health problems are common, others are rare. Some problems occur more
commonly in young animals, other problems are more common in aged pets or certain breeds. Some problems are common in one part of the country but rarely occur in
other locations. After getting a history of your pet's problem and examining your pet, your veterinarian will go through a mental or written process of listing all the problems
from the history and physical examination. The veterinarian then decides which organ(s) and disease(s) may be causing the problems and narrows down the lists based on the age, breed, sex and travel history of your pet. The veterinarian may  recommend tests to determine which organ(s) and disease(s) may be responsible for your pet's problem(s). Tests are often recommended in stages, beginning with screening tests that are relatively inexpensive and have little potential for causing harm to the animal.  Based on the results of the
screening tests more sophisticated tests, which often cost more and may have some risks, may be recommended. Although your veterinarian cannot predict what will be found on a specific test, usually the veterinarian will provide some possible outcomes for each of the tests so that you can decide whether the costs and risks are worth the information that may be gained. This is referred to as cost-benefit ratio.