Articles, Case Studies, and News from Advanced Veterinary Specialists
Keep up-to-date with all-things pet-related in Santa Barbara, with articles and information written by AVS Doctors and Veterinary Technicians. From pet-friendly advice to specialty case studies, we’ve got everything you need to know right here.
When the weather gets hot, our pets may have trouble adjusting to the rising temperature and need special treatment. Heat stroke occurs when an animal’s body temperature rises above normal, which causes damage to blood proteins and internal organs and death can occur. Even when the weather doesn’t seem too warm for the average person, […]
There is an abundance of advice on the internet describing a variety of first aid techniques to employ if your pet is bitten by a snake. Some include cutting over the bite site and sucking out the venom, using a snakebite kit, applying a tourniquet, applying ice packs, and administering antihistamines and antibiotics. NONE of […]
Limping in dogs, or lameness, is a very common occurrence in our canine companions. There are many different causes of limping; some are very simple, such as a sticker in the paw or a mildly pulled muscle, and some causes can be much more serious, such as a torn ligament, fractured bone or arthritis. What to do if your dog is limping? If your pet has never limped before and you are noticing that he/she is acutely (all of the sudden) lame on his leg, first check for the obvious cause such as a wound or a thorn in the paw. If nothing is found you may want to watch him for a few hours to see if the lameness resolves. A minor muscle strain will usually get better quickly. However, if the lameness persists then you should have your pet evaluated by a veterinarian.
Tetanus infection is rarely a problem in dogs. A bacterium called Clostridium tetani is responsible for this disease. Or rather, the toxin produced by the bacteria. Presence of bacteria alone will not cause clinical signs of disease. C. tetani bacteria produce spores that persist in the environment where they are found in dirt and debris. The spores are resistant to boiling and to many disinfectants. Clinical tetanus develops when C. tetani spores enter wounds where anaerobic conditions favor germination of the spores and promote toxin production. Deep wounds including puncture wounds and nail bed wounds typically seal over quickly creating a low oxygen (anaerobic) environment where the spores can germinate. Patients only develop clinical disease if the toxin is developed and binds to the neurons. Patients may develop localized or generalized tetanus. Of the domesticated animal species, horses are the most sensitive to the neurotoxin. Humans are also very susceptible, while dogs and cats are more resistant to effects of the toxin. This is why dogs do not require tetanus vaccinations like we do.