Your pets are a treasured member of your family and sometimes finding the right veterinarian can be a difficult task. At Vetwise Animal Hospital in Downtown Dartmouth, we’re a family owned and operated practice that is committed to offering your furry friends the best possible care. From exams and preventative care to dental procedures and surgery, we are a full-service clinic offering our services to companion pets (cats and dogs). With an in-house laboratory, two trained veterinarians and a staff full of animal lovers, you and your pet will fit right in at Vetwise Animal Hospital.
Weight management programs
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To help ensure your pet’s safety during surgery we use the safest anesthetic agents available. A certified veterinary technician continually monitors your pet’s vital functions, including heart rate, respiratory rate, blood pressure, and blood oxygen level, throughout the procedure and during recovery. Because safety is our primary concern, our modern surgical suite and laboratory are equipped with the diagnostic instruments necessary to carefully monitor your pet at every step of the anesthesia, from admittance to full recovery and departure from the practice.
Surgeries performed at our hospital include elective spays and neuters, abdominal surgeries, orthopaedic surgeries, and surgical repair of life-threatening injuries. Some surgeries are complex and may require a specialist. If this is the case, our doctors will refer your pet to a board certified surgeon.
Pain management is not only humane, but helps your pet feel better, heal more quickly, and may prevent adverse medical consequences associated with uncontrolled pain. At Vetwise Animal Hospital, we feel that managing your pet’s pain is an important part of our commitment to your pet’s health.
We maintain an inventory of relevant veterinary drugs and products to meet many of your pet’s needs. We work closely with two compounding pharmacies to provide medications in a form or strength that better suits your pet. For example, we can have many medications compounded into chewable, flavoured tablets for dogs, or in some cases trans-dermal formulations which can be applied and absorbed through the skin. Our objective is to make medicating your pet as simple as possible while maintaining drug effectiveness.
In-House Blood and Urine Testing
Our hospital is equiped with blood and urine machines that allow us to run samples here in the clinic, and receive results same day. Blood and urine tests help our veterinarians determine the health of your pet, and monitor changes during treatments and medication regiments. We recommend these blood tests as routine screening, especially in older pets, for medication monitoring, as part of a preanesthetic protocol, and of course in situations where you pet is sick. These tests may include a complete blood count (CBC), and chemistry screen as well as thyroid levels. A CBC gives us information about hydration, anemia, infection, clotting ability and the immune system, a chemistry screen tells us about your pet's organ functions, and a thryoid screen detects changes in the thryoid gland.
Since we cannot ask our patients “What is the matter?”, digital diagnostic imaging has become the center of modern veterinary medicine. Digital x-rays can aid in the diagnosis and proper treatment of many serious diseases. Our new digital system benefits your pet by providing improved diagnostic capacity with better imaging, enlargement capabilities, and computer enhancement, such as measurement and notation. This new system is also more environmentally friendly, no longer requiring the harsh chemicals necessary to develop standard x-rays. It is also safer for your pet and our hospital personnel taking x-rays. Digital radiograph technology also allows us to easily consult with veterinary specialists.
WE HAVE PERMANENTLY CLOSED OUR CAT BOARDING FACILITY.
Pets, like people, need regular dental care. Some degree of dental disease is present in 85% of all adult pets. If left untreated, dental disease can result in painful bleeding gums and loose teeth. The bacteria that cause periodontal disease can enter your pet’s blood stream and damage their major organs, including the heart, liver, and kidney.
Your pet will require a general anesthetic and will be closely monitored during the procedure and recovery. We provide complete dental treatments starting with a thorough dental examination and dental radiographs to detect tooth root problems. The plaque and tartar on your pet’s teeth, even below the gumline, is removed with an ultrasonic dental scaler. The teeth are then polished, which removes any rough surface created by the ultrasonic scaler. If extractions are necessary, our veterinarians are experienced, have access to our high speed dental drill, and have taken advanced dentistry courses. We use dental nerve blocks and appropriate pain control to minimize discomfort.
Optimal health requires excellent nutrition. The diets we carry contain only the best, highly digestible ingredients. Each diet is balanced and precisely developed to suit the needs of your pet. We can help you select and maintain a healthy approach to your pet’s nutritional needs. From a disease management perspective, we can prescribe prescription diets to help treat and manage diseases such as allergic skin disease, kidney disease, diabetes, chronic bowel disease, cancers, liver disease, lower urinary tract diseases, arthritis and many others. We believe in and feed our own pets the very same diets that we recommend for your pets.
Preventative Health Care
Senior Pet Wellness
Pets typically enter their senior years at the age of seven. Smaller dogs generally live longer than larger dogs and cats generally live longer than dogs. Dogs and cats age more rapidly than people and every year in a dog’s or cat’s life is equivalent to approximately seven human years. Thanks to advances in veterinary medicine, pets are living longer, healthier lives than ever before. The aging pet is susceptible to a variety of health conditions and diseases, including weight gain or loss, dental disease, osteoarthritis, cancer, diabetes, thyroid conditions, and heart, kidney, or liver disease.
Regular veterinary examinations help keep your pet healthy and are extremely important for senior dogs and cats. Laboratory tests, such as blood and urine tests, can help us detect health problems before they are clinically apparent. With this valuable information, we can often delay the onset or the progression of some diseases. We recommend that senior dogs and cats visit the veterinarian every six months for a complete physical examination and laboratory testing.
The discovery and development of vaccines has been an important step in health care, both for people and for pets. Vaccinations offer protection against major viral and bacterial diseases that cats and dogs may be exposed to. Vaccines contain small quantities of altered viruses, bacteria, or other disease causing organisms. When administered they stimulate your pet’s immune system to produce disease fighting cells and proteins or antibodies to protect your pet against disease. Pets are susceptible to disease at any age and it is very important to have your young puppy or kitten vaccinated for maximum protection.
When your puppy or kitten is first born, it receives some initial immunity from its mother’s milk in the form of colostrum. At about eight weeks of age, this immunity starts to wear off. Your puppy or kitten then needs vaccines in order to build its immunity against harmful diseases. Puppies usually receive three sets of vaccines at eight, twelve, and sixteen weeks of age. Kittens usually receive two sets of vaccines at twelve and sixteen weeks of age.
Vaccinations are designed to provide disease protection for a limited period of time. It’s important that your pet has a yearly wellness examination as well as necessary vaccines. Many pet owners are concerned about over-vaccinating. Each pet brought to us has its lifestyle assessed to determine the appropriate vaccinations. We have dog and cat vaccines that are labelled for use every three years for certain diseases, again minimizing the number of vaccines given to your pet.