MCAH Blog

Red Eye

Wednesday, October 17, 2018 | Comments (0)

A common problem noticed by pet owners is a “red eye.”Red or bloodshot eyes in dogs and cats can be due to a variety of reasons, including foreign material caught in the eye, an infection, an increase in eye pressure (glaucoma), or most commonly, an eye ulcer or scratch.Damage to the cornea of a pet is a common occurrence, as it can be caused by accidental self-trauma, contact with thorns or bushes outside, or play with another animal.

The most common test performed when a corneal scratch is suspected is an eye stain with fluorescein stain.This is a dye that is put in the eye, and when there is a defect on the cornea, the stain “sticks” in it and washes away in the rest of the eye.The stain will then show up under a fluorescent light, indicating where and how deep the damage is.

The mainstay of treatment for corneal damage is an antibiotic drop.Damaged corneas are at an increased risk for developing an infection (or may already have an infection at the time of diagnosis), so a topical antibiotic is needed to help treat or prevent this.

To help aid in the healing process, Remend Corneal Repair Gel also may be used in the treatment of corneal damage.This is a product that uses cross-linked, modified hyaluronic acid to help support the natural healing process of the cornea.As the antibiotic drop may sting slightly at administration, the added benefit of the repair gel is that it is soothing to the eye, making it less likely that the patient will attempt to rub at the eye, making the damage worse.

If you notice your pet has a red eye issue, please give us a call here at Mt. Carmel so it can be quickly and efficiently treated to ensure your pet gets back to normal!


 

Ear Infections

Tuesday, October 09, 2018 | Comments (0)

Ear infections are an issue that have to be some of the most irritating for both dogs and their owners!Ear infections tend to be painful and irritating to a dog’s ear, but their constant itching and scratching from the infection is the hallmark sign for owners who are kept up all night.Ear infections in dogs are relatively common, with a yeast infection being the most common type of infection.Yeast infections typically are caused by a type of fungus called Malassezia, which can be found normally in the ears and on the skin of a dog.When an ear becomes inflamed, it becomes a perfect environment for the yeast to begin to overpopulate, producing a dark, moist, greasy (and smelly!) discharge.The ear canal becomes inflamed, thickened, and red as a result.

Ear infections are a problem that does need to be rectified by a trip to the vet.While yeast is the most common type of ear infection, bacterial infections are also a possibility.An ear swab taken at the hospital and read under the microscope can determine if the infection is of yeast or bacterial origin, and an appropriate medication dispensed to treat the infection.

Ear infection medications come in a variety of types (drops, ointment, leave-in ointment, for example).The type of medication chosen is based off of what type of infection it is, if any medications have been used recently (that could lead to resistance), and what is the best choice is for each individual pet.Ear cleanings to remove the debris and source of infection also are an important part of treatment.

If you are concerned your pet may have an ear infection, please do not hesitate to give us a call.We want everyone in the house (human and animal alike) to be happy, healthy, and sleeping through the night with no shaking and scratching!

 


Rodenticide Toxicity

Monday, October 01, 2018 | Comments (0)

As the colder weather is (slowly!) approaching, more and more outside animals will attempt to join us inside to benefit from the warmth of our homes!It is not uncommon this time of year for exterminators to be seen regularly around the neighborhood, helping to prevent rodents from setting up shop in our basements.It is important to know what measures they are using to protect a basement, as many rodenticides also are toxic to our pets.

The two most common classes of rodenticides are warfarin or bromethalin based.Warfarin based rodenticides (such as TomCat) prevent the animal who ingested it from being able to clot their blood properly.After ingestion, a small bruise or bump can lead to internal bleeding which cannot be stopped without medical intervention.These animals require supplemental vitamin K for at least a month, and in severe cases, may require a plasma transfusion to stabilize the animal from  death.

Bromethalin is a newer and much more dangerous toxin.It affects the metabolism of the brain, effectively depriving it of oxygen.This can progress quickly to neurologic side effects or even death.Time is of the essence in these toxicities, as ideally patients are made to vomit to decrease as much absorption of the toxin as possible, and repeated doses of a substance called activated charcoal to prevent further absorption from the GI tract.

The majority of these products are colored (either green or aqua) to help identify them as poisons.If you are ever concerned that your pet may have ingested one (or an animal that may have eaten one!), please give us a call right away to discuss what necessary steps (if any) are needed!