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Patient Resources

Keep Your Pets Healthy

The health of your pet can change rapidly as he or she ages, and changes often go unnoticed. Early detection and the intervention can lead to longer and healthier lives. Your pet is considered a “senior” at the age of 7. The program described below establishes baseline blood work, urine values, and identifies existing health problems that your pet may have. In addition to these tests, other tests may be recommended such as Felv/Fiv, Heartworm, tick-borne disease titers, full thyroid panel, ecg, x-rays, ultrasound, etc.

veterinary medicine at the clinic

As summer approaches, don’t forget to get your pet heartworm tested. Heartworm is a disease that is transmitted by mosquitoes. The disease can invade the heart and lungs, causing your pet to become very ill and possibly die without the proper treatment. The American Heartworm Association recommends a heartworm check yearly as well as 9 to 12 months of heartworm preventative. Parvo is on the rise this year at an alarming rate and can be prevented with the recommended series of vaccines. Puppies 8 and 10 weeks and older require 3 sets of the DHPP vaccine to be fully protected against this often fatal disease. Keep your puppy indoors and limit any exposure t other dogs until he/she is fully vaccinated to avoid any exposure to the Parvo disease. Kittens as well require a series of vaccines to keep them fully protected.

RCP (Distemper) vaccine should be given at 10 weeks, and older pets require 3 sets and 2 sets of (FELV) feline Leukemia to be fully protected against illness. Both dogs /cats can receive Rabies Vaccination at the age of 4 months. It is our goal to keep your pet safe, and prevent the spread of influenza, and other respiratory infections.

Protect your pet from diseases by vaccinations of all animal diseases; rabies is probably the most feared. The rabies virus attacks the brain and is always fatal. Most pets are exposed to rabies from wild animals particularly skunks, raccoons, bats, foxes. The disease can be transmitted to humans through the bite or scratch of an infected pet. Vaccination of all dogs and cats is the most effective means of control.

Canine Borreloisis

Also known as lyme disease, this is an infection caused by a bacteria which is spread primarily by the painless bite of an infected tick. Symptoms of Borreloisis include fever, lethargy, muscle stiffness, depression and lack of appetite. In more severe cases, lameness occurs as a result of severe musculoskeletal or arthritic type joint pain.

Canine Distemper

This highly contagious viral disease is found wherever dogs are found. It affects respiratory and the nervous system and is often fatal. Primary vaccination should begin at 6-12 weeks of age since dogs often contract the disease at an early age.

Canine Parvo Virus (CPV)

This contagious viral disease usually causes severe diarrhea and vomiting in dogs of all ages but is especially deadly in puppies.
Feline Calicivirus: Calicivirus infection causes a variety of symptoms including, fever, excess salivation and mouth or tongue ulcers. It is usually less fatal than rhinotracheiitis and panaleuopenia.

Feline Leukemia

Feline Leukemia is a form of cancer in cats which is usually fatal. The disease, caused by a virus can lead to tumor growth nearly anywhere in the body as well as a variety of other symptoms. Infected cats are unable to resist other diseases and may die from associated infections.

Feline Pneumonitis

This is a respiratory infection with symptoms resembling rhinotracheiitis. The disease is caused by a chlamydia psittaci and can be completed by associated bacterial infections.

Canine Corona Virus (CCV)

Corona virus is highly contagious and can weaken dogs by causing severe diarrhea and vomiting. The disease is sometimes confused with parvovirus. The two diseases may occur simultaneously in which case symptoms are more severe.

Canine Para Influenza

The viral respiratory disease is often partly responsible for ”kennel cough” in dogs. Infection can be severe in young puppies. Para influenza protection is often included in distemper-parvo vaccines.

Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP)

FIP is a disease caused by coronavirus. The virus is spread by direct cat to cat contact or with contaminated surfaces. There are 2 manifestations of the disease, wet and dry and both nonspecific symptoms such as: intermittent appetite, depression, rough hair coat, or weight fever. There is no cure and the disease in considered fatal.

Feline Panleukopenia

Feline Panleukopenia, sometimes called “feline Distemper,” causes severe vomiting, diarrhea, and dehydration. It is the most widespread disease of cats and causes high death loss especially among kittens. The disease is caused by a virus and is highly contagious.

Feline Rhinotracheitis

Feline Rhinotracheitis infection is a widespread respiratory disease caused by a virus. It is mostly found in small kittens and can cause profuse discharge from the eyes and nose.


This is shed in urine, affects the liver and kidneys, and may cause death. This can be passed to humans. All dogs should get this vaccine starting at 12 weeks; one booster in weeks, then annually 2-4 weeks, then annually thereafter.

Other Resources:

What Every Pet Owner Should Know About Food Allergies

How to Make Your Backyard a Sanctuary for Wildlife
(This isn’t about pets necessarily, but animal lovers will enjoy it.)

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Address: 1950-B Deyerle Ave Harrisonburg, VA 22801

Phone: 540-434-0900

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American Veterinary Medical Foundation