PureVax Rabies Vaccine Now Available for Feline Patients
We are now offering PureVax Rabies vaccines for all of our feline patients! We will still carry our thimerosal free (TF) rabies vaccines, but you’ll have the option to choose the PureVax rabies vaccines for your kittens and adult cats as well. Our veterinary technicians and veterinarians can help you choose which vaccine will be best for you and your kitty, but read below for additional information below regarding the vaccine.
What is the difference between your normal rabies vaccine and the new PureVax?
Our original 1 and 3 year rabies vaccines are Merial’s IMRAB3 TF, which is a killed virus requiring adjuvant to stimulate the immune system (although it does not contain thimerosal).
Merial’s PureVax vaccines are recombinant Canarypox vectored and have no adjuvant in them. 1 year Rabies and 3 year Rabies are now available in our hospital.
What does recombinant mean?
The PureVax vaccines uses a virus that has been recombined with parts of the rabies (or FeLV/FVRCP) virus. The vaccine strain in PureVax is a “carrier” canarypox virus that has been given a gene that makes it able to produce part of a Rabies virus called “glycoprotein G”. When the vaccine is given, the immune system recognizes the Rabies glycoprotein G as “foreign” and makes antibodies against it. That way the immune system can respond and protect against the infection if exposed to the virus in real life.
What is an adjuvant, and what does non-adjuvanted mean?
An adjuvant is added to a vaccine to stimulate the immune system and increase the effectiveness of the vaccine. This is necessary when using killed virus vaccines, such as the IMRAB 1 and 3 TF vaccines. Because the PureVax vaccines use recombinant technology, no adjuvant is needed for effective immunity.
Why are these features important for my cat?
Adjuvants have been shown to potentially to pose increased risk in cats for reactions. Particularly, cats are more susceptible to injection site reactions, chronic inflammation, and more seriously injection site sarcoma formation. While the newer thimerosal free vaccines pose minimal risk, the PureVax non-adjuvanted vaccines are the safest and lowest risk.
What are the downsides of using these vaccines?
Because of the difficult nature of their production, these vaccines are more expensive than the adjuvanted vaccines, particularly the 1 year and 3 year Rabies vaccines. While we can still offer our adjuvanted (but thimerosal free) rabies vaccines for free with your cat’s annual examination, there is an additional fee to give the PureVax rabies vaccine.
A Christmas Story- By Dr. Lesley Gonzales
‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house
All the creatures are stirring (including the mouse!)
With holiday festivities thick in the air,
Many hidden (and not-so-hidden) dangers lurk for your pets everywhere!
While the humans rest their heads on pillows so fat,
Dogs wander the house and think “Hmm, I could eat that…”
And the cats in their mischief, eyes wide, filled with joy,
See the big beautiful tree and think “Just for me! So shiny, I must destroy…”
When out of the kitchen there arose such a clatter,
As Sunny the dog grabbed that leftover food platter
Under the table he flew like a flash,
Munching on bones & adding to his food-off-the-counter stash.
Those bones- cause obstructions and perforations, sometimes just runny poo,
But the onion he ate can cause blood problems too.
And yum! That Christmas ham, so fatty and tender,
Will trigger a pancreatitis that will make Sunny’s stomach feel like a blender.
Add to the stash, chocolates in the stockings and yummy chocolate cake,
The toxic effects (especially for little dogs) can be too much to take.
Rapid heartbeat and panting can be just the start,
Muscle tremors, even seizures, are often the worst part.
But wait! What about those special brownies Aunt Pat brought along,
She mentioned some extra herbs…whatever it is it smelled pretty strong!
Now Sunny’s bradycardic and dizzy, with reflexes postponed,
And if he could talk, he’d tell you he’s stoned.
As Sunny sits under the table in his junk food-filled lair,
Jack the cat prowls the night for more particular fare.
Those new lovely plants, with shiny leaves and colorful parts,
Are Jack’s great love, on which he chooses to dine a la carte.
The lilies are the most dangerous, to be sure.
They can cause kidney failure, which we can’t always cure.
While poinsettias are mostly a trouble to digest,
Mistletoe can be bad for Jack’s little heart in his chest.
Don’t forget the water keeping that Christmas tree alive…
For some reason dogs and cats love it, and they’ll take a drink or five.
But along with the water fertilizer can still lurk,
Causing GI upset, but sometimes weakness or stiffness can also be at work.
And Oh! That wonderful Christmas tree!
Filled with electric lights, tinsel, glass bulbs…all cats will agree:
You’ve set up quite the amazing playground,
And up to the top your cats will bound.
“Let’s play with that electric cord!” thinks Rico the cat.
Nevermind the burns in the mouth and fluid in the lungs caused by that…
“And how about the tinsel…it’s such shiny string!”
His doctor will be doing surgery on his intestines next thing.
But let’s not forget our tiny, humble mouse;
They’re attracted to that welcoming warmth of your house.
Did you know they still carry the Plague in this part of the state?
Flu-like symptoms with fever for your dogs and cats (and you too!) await.
Don’t let this list take you out of the Christmas mood!
Just don’t forget to keep a close eye on your furry brood.
They’re part of the family and love to take part,
Keep their food and gifts pet friendly and they’ll still love you with all their heart.
But should trouble arise, keep our names in mind.
We’re happy to help if they get in a bind.
We treat them like our own, care with all our might,
But we hope to see you only to say Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!
Dr. Lesley Gonzales
Holiday Hours 2017
Saturday December 23, 2017- 8:00 am -12:00 pm
Monday December 25, 2017- CLOSED
Monday January 1, 2018- CLOSED
EARLY CLOSING DECEMBER 16, 2017
Gruda Veterinary Hospital will be closing at 1:00 pm on December 16, 2017 for a Christmas Celebration.
Updated June 2017
A newer outbreak of Canine Influenza virus in California has been in the news recently, and we’ve been getting a lot of questions about risk to our pets in New Mexico. The LA County Public Health website has a lot of very helpful info regarding this outbreak, which can be found here:
In 2015, there was also an outbreak in the Chicago area. Canine influenza virus (CIV), or “dog flu”, is a viral respiratory tract disease that is included in the “kennel cough” syndrome. In previous years, the causative agent of canine influenza was identified as the H3N8 influenza virus. However, this outbreak in LA County and the 2015 outbreak in Chicago is due to a different subtype, H3N2. In both cases, the illness has been traced back to bringing rescue dogs from Asia. At this time there are no reports of canine influenza causing illness in humans. Currently, almost all dogs are susceptible to infection, especially dogs that are housed in high-density dog populations such as kennels, shelters, rescue groups, dog shows, and racing facilities.
Fortunately, as was the case in 2015, the outbreak has been fairly isolated and quickly controlled with proper quarantine procedures, as well as vaccinating at-risk dogs in the near area. There are currently no reports of CIV in New Mexico; thus, the risk of canine influenza to dogs in this area is very low and most clinics, if any, do not stock the vaccine. We still recommend vaccinating dogs against the more common causes of kennel cough, including Bordetella bronchiseptica, canine parainfluenza (a different virus), and canine adenovirus-2 at least two weeks prior to boarding. This vaccine is an intranasal vaccine and lasts for approximately six months.
The influenza virus is efficiently spread between dogs by respiratory secretions, objects carrying the virus (i.e. chew toys, bedding) and direct transmission. The virus is easily killed with bleach but can persist in the environment for approximately one week. Because CIV is a relatively new virus, most dogs have not been exposed, rendering dogs of any age, breed, and vaccine status susceptible to infection.
Clinical signs range from mild to severe and generally occur one week after exposure. Dogs shed the virus nasally for approximately 2-10 days becoming infected. Mild clinical signs include a soft, moist cough. Approximately 10% of dogs can develop a severe form of illness that includes high fever (104-106°F), lethargy, and bronchopneumonia. If CIV is quickly diagnosed and treated, and if dogs are affected with the mild form of the disease, the fatality rate is low. However, if severe disease ensues, the fatality rate can be as high as 5-8%.
Diagnosis of CIV includes physical examination, blood tests, virus isolation, chest radiographs, and appropriate clinical signs. Unfortunately, there is no specific antiviral medication available (human Tamiflu is not recommended). Treatment of mild cases may require only isolating the dog and providing supportive care (good nutrition, rest, prevention of dehydration and secondary infections). Severe cases require hospitalization with intravenous antibiotics and fluids as well as good nutrition.
If you have any further questions, please contact one of the doctors at Gruda Veterinary Hospital.
HERBAL REMEDIES FOR COMMON AILMENTS
JOIN DR. FREEMAN ON SATURDAY JUNE 3, 2017 FROM 11:00 AM-12:00 PM AT MARTY MEALS TO DISCUSS HERBAL REMEDIES FOR COMMON AILMENTS IN DOGS AND CATS.
In this talk Dr. Kim will address several common problems that pets can have, such as, allergies, ear problems, GI upset and more.
She will identify some of the possible underlying causes and patterns that will help you to recognize these issues when they are occurring in your pets.
You will also learn about food therapy options, how to choose helpful herbs and how to find local options for treatment.
Merry Christmas Hours 2016
Saturday – December 24th – CLOSED
Sunday – December 25th – CLOSED
Saturday – December 31st – CLOSED AT NOON
Sunday – January 1st – CLOSED
We will be closing at 1:00pm on Deccember 10 for our employee Christmas Party. See you on the 12th!
New Mexico Thunderstorms
You’ve probably been loving all this rain we’ve been getting (power outages notwithstanding), but your pooches might not feel the same. Nothing turns my 85 pound German Shepherd into a cowering lap dog faster than a few thunderclaps. Storm phobias can often get worse over time, and this can also be a learned behavior. A new dog to the household with thunderstorm anxiety can cause your other dogs to start acting the same way. Here are some tips to ease your dog’s noise and thunderstorm anxiety. There usually isn’t a single fix all solution to this type of phobia; one thing may work for one dog and not for another, and most dogs frequently require a combination of the below. – Dr.Gonzales
1.) Medication, either daily or as needed. Schedule an appointment or give us a call to discuss options for prescription anxiety medications or sedatives. Frequently when you’re first starting to work on your dog’s storm phobia they will really benefit from some type of a prescription anxiolytic. We will prescribe one of many medication options based on your pet’s health, the degree of their anxiety, and a review of any other medications or supplements they’re taking. Most of these work better if given at least 30-60 minutes prior to the start of the storm, so attention to the weather forecast is important!
2.) Over the counter calming supplements. Be sure to discuss these if your pet is taking any other medications, or if we’re planning to prescribe an anxiolytic. Some supplements, like VetriScience, Composure and Solliquin, contain compounds that help take the edge off of minor anxiety symptoms. DAP (dog appeasement pheromone) collars and sprays can also have a calming effect. These can be a little hit or miss, and will likely require more than just one of these for effective management.
3.) Thundershirt. Like the DAP and anxiety supplements, these can also be hit or miss. But it’s worth giving one a try; this one really seems to make a huge difference for some dogs. You can find these at pet stores like Petsmart or online.
4.) Train your pet to have a “safe zone.” With counterconditioning (covered below), this can also make a big difference but takes more time. This may be a covered kennel (open or closed) for some dogs, or a mat or rug for others depending of if they become more anxious in a kennel. Teach your dog to relax on a mat or in a kennel using positive reinforcement techniques such as luring, capturing, and shaping.
● Luring: Handsfree prompting involving a reward to guide your dog into the desired location
● Capturing: Rewarding your dog for a spontaneous behavior (over on the mat or in the kennel) when you see the behavior
● Shaping: Building a new behavior by selectively reinforcing small approximations of the desired behavior; incremental steps are rewarded, previous approximations are extinguished, and the desired behavior is achieved. Reward your dog with praise and a treat when he lies on the mat and gradually learns relaxing postures (eg, lowering his head, breathing slowly, lying with his hind end to the side, lying on his side). When a storm is imminent, your dog should be given medication, directed to his mat/kennel in the safe zone, and rewarded with a long lasting food puzzle or chew bone.
5.) Counterconditioning. Some people initially see this as rewarding a negative behavior, but in reality you’re helping to shift a negative experience (fear from the thunderstorms) into a positive experience (treat time!). Similar to teaching your dog to relax in a safe zone, use long lasting food puzzles or chew bones, play with a favorite toy etc to distract your dog during a storm. They’ll slowly learn that thunderstorms equals something positive for them.
6.) Desensitization. There are many commercial CDs (or downloadables on iTunes) available that can play thunderstorm noises. The idea is to start at a lower noise level and gradually increase the volume while your dog learns to remain calm. You may have to try a couple different versions; one may not incite a fear response at a normal level while another one will. The gradual increase of volume should be done over several sessions, and if at any point your dog becomes fearful of the noise, take a step back and start at a lower noise level. Remember to reward your dog for being calm.
Be sure to be calm and patient with your pet. Avoid punishing fearful behavior, as this tends to only increase their fear and worsen the problem. Over time noise anxieties can improve significantly or disappear altogether with the appropriate time and management techniques, so don’t give up!
Gruda Veterinary Hospital will be closing at 1:00pm on Saturday June 11, 2016 to celebrate the wedding of a staff member