Dickinson Animal Hospital & Pet Wellness Center’s Top 5 Pet Care Blogs of 2018

At Dickinson Animal Hospital & Pet Wellness Center, we proudly deliver what we call The 5 Pillars to our animal patients and their owners. Fundamental to our practice, The 5 Pillars value lifelong wellness care, a high level of comfort, supportive companionship, compassion, and  providing everything a pet might need under one roof (diagnostics, grooming, medication, etc.).

The 5 Pillars also provide direction for our pet care blogs. Whether you have a new pet or are a seasoned pet owner, we strive to educate and inform our growing community of readers. And we can all agree that things are easier with a little guidance from time to time!

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You Are What You Eat: Why Proper Pet Nutrition Matters

pet nutritionProviding our pets with the food they need to grow and sustain a healthy life is one of the more important aspects of responsible pet ownership. But with so many brands of pet food out there, along with new ideas about what pets should and shouldn’t be eating cropping up nearly every day, figuring out what to feed your pet can be confusing at best.

At Dickinson Animal Hospital and Pet Wellness Center, our goal is to find the right diet for each pet that walks through our doors. Deciphering pet nutrition can be tricky, but with the right tools in place (and a little help from us!), it’s possible to find the perfect diet for your four-legged, exotic, and avian friends.

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On the Lookout: Common Pet Toxins in the Home

pet toxinsAs responsible pet owners, we do everything we can to protect our furry companions; we protect them from the elements, have them microchipped, and make sure they are up-to-date on their vaccinations and parasite preventives (among many other safety precautions). Even with all of the daily care and concern we show our pets, it’s easy to overlook the pet poisoning dangers lurking in our own homes.

Pet toxins can be found almost anywhere, and our kitchen cabinets, purses, backpacks, and garage shelves are no exception. Understanding what constitutes a pet toxin is essential to protecting our pets.

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Better Than the Alternative: Is Pet Dental Care Really Worth it?

pet dental careIn our day and age, the concept of prevention has a lot going for it. Sure, it’s not anything new, but the idea of caring for present health in order to positively impact the future is made easier by an endless variety of treatments, supplements, and lifestyles. By preserving what’s good for as long as possible, we hope to have many comfortable, healthy years ahead of us – and the same is true for our pets.

Pet dental care is definitely one of the ways you can ensure a safe, healthy, and happy future for your pet.

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Remembering 2017: Our Top Five Favorite Pet Care Blogs of the Year

cat wellnessAs 2017 draws to a close, your friends at Dickinson Animal Hospital & Emergency Center encourage you to take a moment and reflect on the past year. While the world around us has brought ups and downs, our pet care blog has definitely been one of the highlights of 2017 for us.  We hope it has been for you as well!

Our mission is to keep your pets happy and healthy through our Five Pillars of Great Pet Care. Our blog is just one more way that we strive to reach this goal. Through helping to educate and enlighten you in regards to all aspects of pet care, we hope you can provide the best for your furry family member.

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Check into the Pet Clinic: The In’s and Out’s of Cat Wellness Care

cat wellnessThere are many compelling reasons to adopt a cat, but one factor that draws in prospective owners is the idea that cats require less day-to-day care and attention. Sure, many cats might keep more to themselves than some dogs, but that doesn’t mean their health can be ignored. When you commit to a feline friend, you’re saying that cat wellness matters to you. And it matters to us, too!

Routine Visits

We strongly advise cat owners to bring their cats in to see us twice a year for cat wellness examinations. This preventive approach allows us to remain on the forefront of your cat’s health. By taking care of any developing problems before they get out of hand, we can sustain wellness for longer periods of time.

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GACK! Are Hairballs Normal?

hariballsNo sound is quite as unsettling as the midnight “hack,” “gag,” or “bletch” from Fluffy the cat. Not only is the sight and sound of hairballs being coughed up disturbing, it often also seems equally distressing for our cats. So, what are these mystery lumps of fur, and are they a normal and healthy function of being a cat?

Defining Hairballs

Despite their name, “hairballs” or trichobezoars are not orb shaped as the name implies. Instead, they’re typically thin and cylindrical, a shape formed by emerging through the esophagus. Hairballs are essentially wads of undigested hair along with digestive fluids, bile, and sometimes undigested food.

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Bug Battle: Choosing the Right Parasite Prevention for Your Pet

Mosquitos, fleas, and ticks, oh my! Besides being annoying and just plain gross, these little critters can pose some serious risks to our pets. Many parasites carry diseases that can sicken or even kill pets, and, in some instances, human members of the family can also be affected.

Thanks to our temperate winters here in the Houston area, these troublesome pests are never far from our minds, or our pets’ bodies, making year-round parasite prevention of the utmost importance. Your team at Dickinson Animal Hospital is committed to helping you find the right parasite prevention products to meet your pet’s needs all year long.

Year-Round Protection

Prevention is the single most important step you can take in protecting your pet from parasites. During your pet’s wellness exam, your veterinarian will work with you to determine the correct parasite prevention protocol based on your pet’s health, lifestyle, and other factors.

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Chin Up: Home Pet Dental Care You Can Smile About

The field of veterinary dentistry has made enormous strides in recent years, and the addition of exams and professional cleanings can add vitality to your pet’s overall wellness. A critical piece of the puzzle, however, is routine maintenance between cleanings. Most owners know a bit about at-home pet dental care, but Fluffy needs more than just a dental chew here and there.

Without Help

Ignoring plaque and tartar buildup on your pet’s teeth can lead to significant health problems, including inflammation, infection, and eventual tooth decay and loss.

An initial indicator of dental disease is the smell of your pet’s breath. Since the majority of cats and dogs over the age of two have dental disease in one form or another, it’s important not to let this slide. Poor oral health can have surprising effects on the health of your pet’s heart, liver, and kidneys.

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Preparing for a Pet Wellness Exam Increases Satisfaction

This isn't a chew toy!Have you ever had doubts or questions pop into your head about your pet’s health or behavior, only to have them vanish when you need them the most? We’re talking about the moment during a preventive pet wellness exam that could be educational and beneficial to your role as a pet owner. With our tips, you won’t have to struggle to recall an episode from months ago – and you’ll leave with the fullest understanding of your pet’s health.

Write it Down

We recommend keeping a notebook or journal to keep track of your pet’s diet, behavior patterns, exercise routines, and any other changes to normal life. Jotting down your observations over time will help communicate any questions or concerns you might have during your pet’s exam.

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