Tag Archives: pet clinic Roanoke VA

Playing With Your Kitten

Has a kitten just joined your household? Congratulations! You’ve basically adopted an adorable, tiny, fluffy predator. Little Fluffy will spend the majority of the next year trying to perfect her pouncing, biting, and scratching techniques. A local pet clinic Roanoke, VA offers tips on playing with kittens below.

Encourage Good Petiquette

Kittens may be small, but these miniature furballs have very sharp claws and teeth. Little Fluffy is going to be very focused on learning how to operate those nails and choppers. She may try to practice on you. This may be cute, but it’s best to discourage this behavior. Otherwise, you may find that your feline buddy still treats you as a cat toy when she’s an adult. That definitely won’t be cute! Tell your furry friend ‘Don’t bite’ or ‘Put your claws away’ in a firm, disapproving tone. You can also blow in her face. Then, just ignore her for a while. Most cats get the hint fairly quickly. 

Make It Routine

Cats tend to thrive when they’re on a set routine. If you pay attention, you’ll see that your tiny feline soon settles into her own kitty schedule for naps, meals, more naps, more meals, and playtime. Try to play with your feisty furball at the same time every night. (Tip: if little Fluffy gets the zoomies at night, schedule kitty playtime for just before bed. If you tire her out, she’ll just go to sleep.) 

Make It Challenging

Playing allows cats to both hones and satisfies their innate hunting instincts. Playtime will be much more fun for little Fluffy if you control the toy. Your frisky pet will have to focus to track where her ‘prey’ will go next. This offers your kitty beneficial mental stimulation. It’s also a great confidence booster! 

Be Safe

Kittens don’t know what is and aren’t safe to play with. In fact, they tend to gravitate towards the things that aren’t. Keep a close eye on your adorable bundle of mischief. Don’t let her play with anything that could be dangerous, such as small or sharp objects, plastic wraps, and anything with dangling threads. 

Have Fun

Little Fluffy’s adorable toddler stage will pass very quickly! Enjoy this time with your furry pal. Take plenty of pictures and videos. 

Please contact us if ever we can be of assistance. As your veterinary clinic Roanoke, VA, we’re here for you!

5 Ways to Keep Your Dog’s Skin Healthy

Your skin is your body’s largest organ. The same is true for your dog! So, it makes sense that keeping your canine companion’s skin in good shape is the right thing to do. Read on for five tips from a Roanoke, VA veterinarian on keeping Fido’s skin healthy.

Feed the Proper Diet

One of the easiest and most effective ways to keep your dog’s skin healthy is to feed them a great diet. What your dog eats has a lot to do with how his skin and fur looks and feels! When Fido is receiving the proper nutrients through food, the skin and hair follicles stay healthy. Poor nutrition, on the other hand, makes for dry skin and a coarse, dull coat of fur. Ask your veterinarian for a recommendation on a great food choice for your pooch.

Groom Your Pup

Regular grooming is another simple way to make sure your dog’s skin stays healthy. Brushing your dog ensures that grime and dirt is removed from the coat and doesn’t start to irritate the skin. And the occasional bath is a great way to keep the skin clean and moisturized. Just make sure not to bathe Fido too frequently, because this can backfire and wind up drying out the skin and coat.

Protect Against the Sun

Just like you, too much exposure to the sun isn’t a good thing for your dog’s skin. Dogs can get sunburnt just as easily as you can! It’s not likely to happen on areas of the body that are covered by thick fur, but it can easily occur on areas with thin fur or no fur at all, like the bridge of the nose or edges of the ears. If your dog will be spending time outdoors, try applying a canine-specific sunscreen.

Keep Up With Preventatives

Of course, a flea or tick infestation isn’t good for your dog’s skin, or their health in general. Prevent the problem entirely by keeping your dog up to date on a heartworm preventative and a flea and tick medication. Call your veterinarian if your dog is in need of these medications.

Schedule Veterinary Checkups

Last but not least, having your vet evaluate your dog’s skin and fur health on a regular basis is a fantastic way to give yourself peace of mind. Schedule your pooch’s next office visit with your Roanoke, VA animal hospital. We’re here to help!

5 Purrfect Reasons to Cuddle Your Cat

Did you know that March 23rd is Cuddly Kitten Day? If there is one thing kitties excel at—aside from napping, it may very well be snuggling their humans. As it turns out, cuddling your pet is good for both of you! Read on as a Roanoke, VA vet offers tips on cuddling cats.

Make Fluffy Feel Loved

Cats have tried very hard to make us think of them as cold, aloof killers, but we aren’t entirely convinced. Many of these little furballs are very emotional, and can get quite anxious if they feel isolated or ignored. By cuddling your cat, you’re also helping reassure Fluffy that she is loved and safe, which will only strengthen the bond between you.

Respect

Our feline overlords all have their own opinions on how and when they want to be petted, and for how long. Let Fluffy decide when cuddle time stops and starts. This will help your kitty feel safer, and can also help her learn to trust you more. This is particularly important if you have just recently adopted your cat, or is she is naturally timid and/or wary.

Health Benefits

There are actually some very tangible benefits to cuddling cats. Studies show that hugging a kitty can lower blood pressure, and help people cope with loneliness, depression, anxiety, and stress. There are also some specific benefits for children. As it turns out, kids that grow up with pets are less likely to have allergies than those without animal companions.

Relaxation

Life can get quite stressful and hectic these days. Sometimes just taking a few minutes to relax and unwind with your furry friend can help you shake off a bad day and just reset. Sometimes it really is the little things in life that matter most! Of course, purring cats also make great sleep aids.

Purrs

There may just be a bit of magic in Fluffy’s purr. Research indicates that kitties vibrate at frequencies between 25 and 150 Hertz. These same frequencies have been shown to be beneficial in healing tissue. Keep your feline buddy’s little motor going by offering her lots of attention. Even giving your furball a quick forehead scratch as you pass by will help keep her happy.

Please reach out to us, your Roanoke, VA vet clinic, for all of your cat’s veterinary care needs. We’re here to help!

6 Ways To Keep Your Cat’s Coat Healthy

One of the many things we love about cats is the fact that they are so clean. Fluffy is very dedicated to her beauty routine, and will groom herself every day. However, there are also things you can do to keep her fur healthy. A Roanoke, VA vet lists some key ones below.

Brushing

Fluffy is pretty good about taking care of her coat, but she will still benefit from being brushed regularly. Brushing will remove dead hair and dander from her coat. This will reduce the amount that she swallows, which in turn means less hairballs. It’s also a great way to spend time with your pet!

Good Food

Proper nutrition will go a long way towards keeping your kitty’s coat soft and shiny. If Fluffy isn’t getting enough nourishment, her fur will soon show the effects, and will start to look dry and dull. Supplements may also help. Omega 3 and 6 oils, for instance, contain essential fatty acids that help keep your pet’s fur healthy. Ask your vet for specific advice.

Parasite Control

Fleas can wreak havoc on your cat’s fur. Kitties often over-groom themselves trying to find relief, which will leave their coats looking a bit unkempt. Plus, fleas will make your beloved pet miserably itchy. They can also spread dangerous diseases and/or transmit other parasites. Keep up with Fluffy’s parasite control!

Avoid Overbathing

You don’t have to bathe your furball, though you can if you want to, assuming your vet gives the green light. Use warm—not hot—water and shampoos made specifically for cats. Also, don’t overbathe Fluffy. This can strip the oils from her fur, which will dry out her coat and make her look, well, a bit frizzy.

Keep Kitty Happy

Cats are very emotional. If Fluffy feels stressed, lonely, or scared, she may stop cleaning herself. Or, she may go the other way and over-groom herself, which can result in hair loss and bald patches. Keep your kitty purring by making sure she always has a clean litterbox, fresh water, good food, toys, and, of course, comfy beds.

Veterinary Care

If you notice any skin or coat problems, such as flaking, redness, or thinning fur, contact your vet immediately. The sooner an issue is treated, the better!

Please feel free to contact us, your Roanoke, VA vet clinic, anytime. We’re happy to help!

7 Ways To Keep Your Cat Happy and Healthy

Cats are very cute and lovable pets, and they have many charming qualities that have helped them earn places in our homes and hearts, as well as on our laps. One great thing about these cuddly little furballs is the fact that they are quite easy to care for. However, they aren’t completely independent. Fluffy needs good TLC in order to thrive. Here, a Roanoke, VA vet discusses keeping kitties happy, healthy, and purring.

Good Food

Proper nutrition will go a long way towards keeping your cute pet in good health. Offer Fluffy the best pet food you can afford. Treats are fine, but don’t go overboard. If your feline pal becomes obese, she could develop some very serious health issues!

Clean Litterbox

While cleaning litterboxes isn’t the best part of having a kitty, it is necessary. We recommend scooping daily, and changing the litter every week or so.

Beds

You may have noticed that cats are rather tired. Apparently, looking cute and doing nothing is really exhausting! Offer your sleepy furball plenty of comfy napping spots. Store-bought beds are great, but Fluffy probably won’t turn her nose up at a soft pillow or blanket in a box.

Playtime!

Cats are hunters by nature, so they are more or less wired to pounce and jump on things. Take time to play with Fluffy every day! Also, make sure she has plenty of things she can play with by herself when you’re out.

Stimulation

You may not think boredom is much of a problem for kitties. However, cats can get irritable, lonely, and unhappy with nothing to do, especially when they are home alone. Fluffy will appreciate having lots of nooks and crannies to explore. Pet furniture is great, but boxes, paper bags, and newspaper tunnels will also work. Kitties also like looking out windows, so offer your furry little voyeur a comfy spot with a good view.

Veterinary Care

It’s probably safe to say that Fluffy would rather take a nap than come visit us, but don’t be swayed. Proper veterinary care is crucial for your cat’s health! Follow your vet’s recommended appointment schedule.

Love

Love is the magic ingredient in any pet care routine. Pay lots of attention to Fluffy, and make sure she feels loved!

Please contact us, your Roanoke, VA vet clinic, anytime. We offer great veterinary care!

Caring For A Dog With Allergies

If you’ve ever had allergies, or know someone who has, you know they aren’t much fun. Our canine companions can also develop allergies. In fact, Fido can become allergic to a wide variety of things. These allergies can develop at any point in a dog’s life, and often come on unexpectedly. Read on as a local Roanoke, VA vet offers tips on caring for a pooch with allergies.

Veterinary Care

First things first: if you know or suspect that your canine buddy has allergies, take him to the vet for some testing. Once your vet has pinpointed what Fido is reacting to, he or she will be able to offer specific treatment options. This may consist of medication, a special diet, and/or home care instructions.

Pollen Counts

You may want to download an app for tracking pollen counts, or monitor levels online. When pollen counts are high, limit your furry pal’s outdoor time.

Products

Whenever you bathe Fido, or wash his clothes, toys, or bedding, use hypoallergenic, unscented soaps and shampoos. If you take your furry buddy to the groomer’s, make sure they know not to use scented products on him. We also recommend washing your pet’s things every week or so. Use the hot cycle and then tumble dry. This will help sanitize Fido’s things.

Paws For Thought

When you bring your canine pal in from outside, wipe his paws and belly down with a damp cloth. This will remove dust and pollen from his feet and coat. This can actually be quite helpful. For instance, if Fido runs through a lawn filled with weeds he is allergic to, he may become further irritated if he licks his paws afterwards.

Cleaning

Vacuuming frequently will help reduce the amount of allergens in your home. It will also help keep your place smelling better! You don’t have to do your whole house every day. Just quickly go over high-traffic areas and your furry friend’s favorite lounging spots daily. Follow up with more thorough cleanings every week.

Air Quality

It may be a good idea to invest in a quality air purifier. This will help remove dust and dander from the air. Remember to change the filters regularly!

Do you know or suspect that your canine friend has allergies? Contact us, your local Roanoke, VA vet clinic, today! We are dedicated to offering great veterinary care!

6 Things Your Dog Probably Isn’t Thankful For, But Should Be

Thanksgiving is coming up fast. At this time of year, it’s important to think about the things we are grateful for. Pets are definitely on that list! But what about Fido? While there’s no doubt that your canine pal is thankful for bacon, belly rubs, and car rides, there may be some things he may not appreciate as much as he should. A local Roanoke, VA vet lists some of them below.

Baths

Fido isn’t generally a big fan of being bathed. In fact, he may actually run and hide at the mere mention of the dreaded B-word. However, we suspect that our furry pals do enjoy that salon-fresh feeling of being soft and clean!

Us

We know, visiting the veterinary clinic can be unsettling to dogs. There are a lot of strange faces and smells, plus the presence and scents of other nervous pets, some of whom aren’t feeling very well. We do all we can to make appointments easy on our canine patients. That said, we’re pretty sure that most of them would rather be napping or playing Fetch.

Leashes

Leashes are very important to your four-legged friend’s safety. You don’t want your pup dashing off every time he sees a squirrel. That could be very dangerous! Fido, however, probably sees them as more of a nuisance.

Fences

Fences also make the list of things Man’s Best Friend would happily go without. Your furry friend doesn’t necessarily understand how many dangers are waiting beyond his yard. He just wants to explore and chase squirrels!

Parasite Control

There are quite a few options for parasite control available now, from topical drops to pills to shampoos and collars. No matter what product you choose, your furry buddy probably won’t be very enthusiastic about his regimen. However, he will definitely be both healthier and more comfortable if he’s safe from dangerous parasites like fleas and heartworms.

Vaccinations

When Fido gets vaccinated, he doesn’t know that he’s being protected from deadly diseases, such as rabies. He just feels that little pinch. (That accusing look pooches sometimes give us after they get a vaccine will never stop being adorable.) Sorry, Fido: it’s for your own good!

Happy Thanksgiving! Please contact us, your Roanoke, VA vet clinic, for all of your dog’s veterinary care needs … even the ones he isn’t grateful for.

3 Simple Ways to Keep Fleas Away

Has your pet been scratching a lot lately? If so, fleas may very well be the culprit. These disgusting parasites aren’t just an itchy nuisance: they can carry disease and other parasites. Severe infestations can also make our furry pals very sick, and can even be fatal! Here, a Roanoke, VA vet offers advice on making fleas flee.

Parasite Control

The best thing you can do to keep your furry friend flea-free is to keep up with his or her parasite control products. There are quite a few different products to choose from, from topical drops to collars to sprays to oral medications. Ask your vet for specific recommendations. No matter what you choose, it’s important to follow the package instructions carefully. Also, never double up on products. This can expose your beloved pet to dangerous levels of pesticides!

Vacuuming

Your vacuum cleaner is also a great tool when it comes to fighting fleas. We recommend doing high-traffic areas and your furry buddy’s favorite lounging spots every day. It only takes a few minutes! Follow up with more thorough cleanings every week. When you are finished vacuuming, empty the canister into a plastic bag, then seal the bag and take it outside for disposal. That way, if you vacuumed up any eggs, they won’t hatch in the house. If you like to take your dog on car rides, you’ll need to vacuum your vehicle out as well.

Landscaping

Keeping up with your property is also very important in the fight against fleas. Fleas love to lurk in tall grasses, so just keeping your grass neatly mowed can help quite a lot. Picking up debris, such as fallen leaves and branches, is also important. These things make very tempting habitats for unwanted guests like fleas and ticks. Birds often carry fleas, so if you have a bird feeder, set it back from your house a bit. Fallen fruit and produce can also be problematic, as it can attract wild animals, who may very well have fleas. Last but not least, if you have shrubs or hedges around your house, keep them trimmed back so the branches don’t touch your walls. This can provide fleas an easy access to your home.

Please reach out to us, your local Roanoke, VA pet hospital, for all of your pet’s veterinary care needs. We are here to help!

Respect Your Cat Day

Did you know that March 28th is Respect Your Cat Day? We know, our feline pals demand respect every day. However, while indulging your cat with catnip mice is great, the best way to show your kitty proper respect is to simply make sure that her needs are being met. A local Roanoke, VA vet offers tips on how to do that in this article.

Toys

Although your furry friend will spend a rather excessive amount of time snoozing, she can’t sleep all the time. Make sure your feline buddy has plenty of entertainment options for when she is awake. It’s also important to offer your kitty something to watch. A window seat with a good view is purrfect.

Facilities

Make sure to keep your four-legged friend’s powder room nice and clean. Cats hate dirty bathrooms! We recommend scooping the litterbox out daily, and changing the litter thoroughly every week.

Veterinary Care

We recommend that all kitties be microchipped, spayed or neutered, and kept current on vaccinations and parasite control. Most cats should see the vet for wellness care at least once a year, once they are fully grown. It’s also important to watch for signs of sickness. Fluffy often tries to hide signs of illness, so you may not notice anything until she is quite sick. Call your vet immediately if you notice anything amiss.

Purrniture

Kitties love to explore little nooks and crannies. Get Fluffy some pet furniture with small spaces she can hide in. Cat towers are great as well, as they offer our feline friends scratching posts, jungle gyms, napping spots, and lookout points, all in one.

Comfort

As you may have noticed, cats are rather fond of napping. In fact, sleeping is probably Fluffy’s favorite pastime. Make sure your kitty has plenty of comfy bed and napping spots to snuggle up in. (Of course, your cute pet may ignore her bed and sleep in a shoebox, but that’s beside the point.)

Keeping Kitty Content

Cats may have a reputation for being cold and aloof, but at the end of the day, they can be very affectionate. Pay lots of attention to your furball. Talk to her, play with her, and let her snuggle up with you when she wants.

Please contact us, your local Roanoke, VA pet clinic, for all of your cat’s veterinary care needs. We are here to help!