The Ultimate Guide To Choosing A Vet

Because finding a vet is more than just vet recommendations!

  When it comes to our animals they’re just like, if not 100%, our family. We want the best for them and just as we would search high and low for the best health care practitioner for our children, we would do the same in finding a vet for our pets!   At The Vet Set in Carroll Gardens, we are the leading vet clinic in your Brooklyn neighborhood. If you’re in search of a vet for your beloved animal, catch today’s post!

Finding A Vet That You Trust

  You can search high and low and even schedule a couple of vet appoints, only to find that you and your animal don’t vibe with them. It’s nothing personal — it’s the same as if you were to go into the doctor and just not like their bedside manner. When it comes to our pets, we need to be picky! It’s often more than just taking a vet recommendation — a vet clinic is a place you want your pet to embrace and not fear, so it really does make a difference in who you choose!   So, let’s get into the nitty-gritty of finding a vet you trust!  

Get To Know The Vets In Your Area

  Okay, we’re going to go ahead and say it now — it’s perfectly okay to ask around for vet recommendations! It’s always nice to get an idea of the vets in your area — you can gather the recommendations you get and make your own informed decision!     But, where do you start?    If you have a dog, people and other dog owners likely flock to you to chit-chat about your pooch. If you notice other dog people around, ask them. Or, talking to people at the dog park, local pet store, or pet shelters is never a bad idea. It’s a diverse set of people who may have a myriad of recommendations for you.    You can also ask neighbors who have pets and even your co-workers are a great resource. Many times you’ll hear one name over and over, albeit positive or negative, and these are leads you can either follow up on or do a further investigation.    

Start The Vetting Process!

  Once you have done a little research in your area on local vets and asked for recommendations you now have a solid list to work from. Now it’s time to look into each vet clinic to better narrow down where you want to go. Below are a few things to take into consideration.    Know what kind of vet services you’re looking for - There are a variety of vets that specialize in a myriad of services —  some vets specialize in large animals such as horses and other farm animals, while others specialize in birds. It’s important to know if they specialize in any specific animal or if they’re a comprehensive vet.    Understand how the vet clinic works - Vet clinics not only offer a variety of services but they all operate a little differently. If you’re looking for specific care such as overnight care or emergency services, it’s important to call and connect with someone who can give you a rundown of how their vet clinic operates. When you do give the vet clinic a call, this is always a good time to see if you work well with their staff and if they’re friendly — it provides you the initial information in their approach to treating pets and what the environment might be like.    Schedule an appointment with the vet - There is no harm in scheduling a meet and greet with the vet in question. A wellness checkup will give you an idea of the demeanor of the vet and it gives you a chance to ask questions about training or what other services they might recommend such as nutrition consultations or holistic or alternative pet therapies.    Here are a couple of things to make a mental note of when you check out your local vet clinic:  
  • Is the vet clinic clean and sanitary? Notice everything from the waiting area to the exam rooms
  • Is there a separate waiting area for dogs and cats?  
  • Is the staff accommodating, empathetic, and make the pets feel comfortable?
  It’s also important to ask the right questions. Consider the following:  
  • What services do they have available on-site including services such as bloodwork, x-rays, ultrasounds, etc?
  • How are the overnight pets monitored?
  • Does the vet clinic accept animal insurance? Or, what kind of payments do options do they offer?
  There are many things you can do to find a vet and a vet clinic you love! Everything from gathering recommendations from your community to visiting the clinic can give you a good idea of what the vet clinic may be like.    At the end of the day, it’s all about the connection you make with the vet and whether or not they can accommodate the services you’re looking for.  

For more information about our Carroll Gardens vet clinic, reach out to us today!   

               

Aftercare Tips For Pets Post-Surgery

It’s difficult to remember all the details the vet gives when following their surgery!

  When your beloved furry friend undergoes surgery, it’s a scary, anxious, and nerve-racking time, and finally, when they’re out, you’re just relieved that everything went well, that all the post-care instructions your vet gives you slips your mind. This is common and we completely understand!   The Vet Set is here to support your pet’s wellness through prevention and, when needed, surgery. It’s important to know how to care for your pet post-surgery, so take a moment today and learn more about what you can do after a pet’s surgical procedure.

Aftercare For Pets Post-Surgery

  Once you’re reunited with your pet you don’t always hear all the details or ask the questions you need because you’re overcome with relief and excitement that your pet is well. While it’s common to provide handouts to take home to address care for your pet after surgery, it can get lost in the transition of everything. Below we’ll address common things you can do to help your pet recover after surgery.   Help keep your pet calm.   Anesthesia can affect your pet differently every time they go under, so even though they were out and about playing after last time, it could be a different story this time.   The best way you can accommodate your pet is by keeping them calm and relaxed, and sometimes this means quarantining them. Keep them in a quiet, comfortable space where they can rest and find refuge in if they seem a little out of it.   They may need to just rest so a confined space provides the opportunity to heal in peace — especially if you have a home with other animals.   Help your pet in temperature regulation.   When pets are coming off of anesthesia, their body can be overwhelmed and have a difficult time maintaining their body heat. It’s important to help them stay warm in this time of healing so give them ample blankets they can curl up in to stay toasty and comfortable.   Monitor your pets food and water.   It is encouraged to have your pet eat and drink after surgery, but always check with your vet beforehand. If you need to, give your vet a call and check in about what needs to happen — it’s never pleasant for your pet to have to deal with vomiting or an upset stomach as a result eating too soon after surgery. Create a safe environment.   Anesthesia can leave your pet a bit disoriented and things like their coordination and perception may be impaired, so do a once over before they come home and ensure it’s a safe place for them to roam.   Remove any tripping hazards such as cords or rugs and block the stairs and sharp corners if they’re prone to falling.   Be gentle with your pet.   If your pet has bandages or splints, they may have a hard time getting around — things like jumping onto the couch, or even get out to the backyard to use the bathroom, may be a chore for your pet.   If you have to help them get around, be gentle and mindful of their post-surgery site.      Be mindful of the other pet interactions.   If you have other pets at home, it’s important to keep an eye on what they’re all doing. Although dogs can be elated that their friend is home, cats can be more aggressive and view the animal as foreign because of the new smells and different behavior the pet may have.      Greeting the others may be too much at first which is why a quarantined spot is important — for everyone’s health and safety.   Post-surgery can be a confusing time but when you have an idea or checklist of what to do, it can make the transition better for everyone — animals included!  

To learn more about the vet services we offer in our Carroll Gardens office, reach out today!

 

11 Tangible Ways to Help Your Aging Dog (Part Two)

Keep your dog comfortable and improve their quality of life as they reach their golden years!

  In part one, we began our exploration into practical ways you can assist your dog as they age, such as modifying their eating area and implementing ramps and steps. In today’s blog, we have additional things you can do to help keep your senior comfortable around the house.   The Vet Set in Carroll Gardens is the place to bring your pooch for the ultimate in veterinary medicine. We provide senior dogs with the best options and treatments that you won’t find in a traditional vet clinic. Try dog acupuncture or CBD to support inflammation and pain and improve their immune system. Find unique vet services here!   Now, more ways to elevate and improve your dog’s comfort and quality of life below!

Make These Adjustments to Aid Your Aging Pup!

  Help reduce anxieties.   If your dog is near the end, they may be prone to anxiety because of their loss of senses. Many times their eyesight and hearing are impacted so when new people come over and want to dote and love on them, this can raise their anxiety because the attention is abrupt and alarming.   Help quell their anxiety by keeping them close when people come over or avoid a lot of new people in your home — especially small children!   Keep a healthy home.   Older dogs have an impaired and vulnerable immune system, so it’s critical to keep a healthy home. This not only means spatially with a clutter-free environment, but germ-wise as well. Clean and disinfect your home on a regular basis to keep everyone within it happy and healthy.   Accept puppy pads.   There will come a time when your senior dog will not always be able to make it outside to use the bathroom, so puppy pads are a must! It’s not fun for anyone, so if you are proactive and accept that eventually, you will need them, it may help you come to terms with this reality.   Incorporate soft or wet dog food.   A lifetime of chewing and chomping can leave your dog susceptible to teeth deterioration, which can make eating in old age more difficult or even painful. If you notice your dog isn’t eating, it could be a result of sore teeth.   Try incorporating softer foods or making a gravy to mix with their dry dog food. Dogs love wet canned food, so this also might be a great option to try.   If your dog still isn’t eating after trying new, softer foods, connect with your vet to ensure everything is a-ok.   Be proactive about their health.   Aging dogs require additional TLC and observing their health is crucial. This means paying a little bit more attention to what’s going on and addressing it if need be.   Be proactive in their health and regularly check their teeth, ears, and coat. Assess for any lumps or bumps or tender areas. A little extra attention can prevent or help with a diagnosis in the future.   Remember car safety.   If your dog loves to go for a ride, remember that as they age they have a much more difficult time getting in and out of the car.   You can find things to assist them in the car, in addition to modifiers that make it safer for them to ride in the car. When you incorporate these things, it makes getting in the car safer for you and your pooch and prevents any injuries they may sustain while riding along.   Minimize loud noise.   Unless your dog has hearing issues, eliminating loud noises can help them stay calm and eliminate any anxieties they may have. Overstimulating environments often find senior dogs completely terrified and shut down (think hiding in the bathroom), so keeping a peaceful home is extremely pertinent for your dog.   Sound therapy has helped senior dogs adjust by implementing calming music — classical and instrumental music — to help them adjust to the different sound frequencies of everyday life.     Your senior dog can absolutely have an amazing life towards the end stages when you make practical and easy adjustments to your home. Incorporate puppy pads and soft foods in combination with keeping a clean home, a safe car, and being diligent in preventative care.  

For a doggy wellness check-up, schedule a visit to our vet clinic in Carroll Gardens today!

 

11 Tangible Ways to Help Your Aging Dog (Part One)

Watching your dog go from a puppy to a senior can be challenging, which is why it’s vital to help them as they age.

  Your puppy will always be your puppy, even as a senior. Everyday activity becomes more challenging with an aging dog and navigating and modifying things for your dog can be very helpful to their quality of life.   At Vet Set, we are a comprehensive vet clinic in the Carroll Gardens area that specializes in dog care — from puppies to seniors. Join us in today’s post as we provide you with practical and tangible things you can do today to make your senior dog more comfortable.

Create an Aging-Friendly Home For Your Dog

  If you’re watching your dog transition into old age right before your eyes you may feel helpless, but you can both ease their discomfort and help them maneuver this time more easily with a couple of changes around your home. Find out how below.   Raise their food and water dishes.   Whether you have an aging Pug that is one with the ground or a Great Dane that towers, both could benefit from food and water dishes that are elevated.   Make a couple of measurements to find the ideal height for the dishes — you can then find feeders premade online (most are adjustable) or you can make one yourself.   When you raise their food and water dishes it creates less strain and helps them get the nourishment they need without any obstacles.   Ramp it up!   As dogs get older, they may get achy and stiff — just like us! You can help ease this discomfort through the use of pet ramps and steps. These modifiers help your pet get up and down steps, on furniture, and the bed with ease. It eliminates big jumps that could potentially lead to an accident or your pup injuring themselves.   Turn up the heat.   Hair loss is common in senior dogs and they will often lose clumps of it at a time, which leaves them vulnerable to colder temperatures.   Help them out by creating an inviting and warm temperature in your home during the colder months. You can either turn up the heat or, if they have their own little area, use a space heater and extra blankets to create a comfortable oasis.   If you have a dog prone to getting cold such as a Whippet, you may want to invest in some doggy sweaters or coats.   Impart consistency.   Elder dogs need habits, routines, and consistency. Create a schedule that they can follow on a pretty consistent basis. For example, have all their mealtimes at the same time every day, in addition to their outdoor time.   A consistent environment is also key for dogs dealing with vision impairments and dementia — ensure all their toys are in the same spot and your home doesn’t undergo any major shifts in where the furniture is located.   Senior proof your home.   Puppies and senior dogs have some things in common in that they’re prone to accidents and injuries. Just as you puppy proof your home, do the same for your aging dog.   Eliminate sharp objects such as furniture edges and sharp corners to help prevent any injuries. As time goes on, whether your dog begins to lose vision or spatial awareness, they’re more prone to run into things so give them a hand by making a few modifications to any hazardous spaces.   Watching your dog age and become a senior requires some adjustments to provide them with the optimal quality of life in their end stage. These last days can be comfortable for your dog when you help make their day-to-day activities more doable and are sensitive to their needs.   There are many ways to help ease your senior dog into a new stage of life such as modifying their food and water station, implementing ramps and steps, creating consistency, and proofing your home to avoid accidents and injuries.   This is just the beginning — get more useful tips in part two of our blog! Stay tuned!  

To schedule an appointment or to learn more about the senior dog services we offer such as acupuncture or pain management, reach out and connect with us today!

         

Caring For Your Cat and Her Litter After Birth

It’s important to assist your cat in and after her kitten delivery! Cuddle them all closely and get the best post cat pregnancy tips.

  The time has come — the cat that you adore has given birth to a litter of kittens. You’ve been anticipating this moment over the last two months, and now they're here, all of them! What happens now, and how do you care for the new mother and her new litter?   The Vet Set loves tiny, new kittens! We’re here to support you and your cat in prenatal and postnatal care. Take a moment in your day and learn more about how to keep everyone happy and healthy in this new transition!

The Fragile Post-Pregnancy Stage For Cats

  After a cat gives birth, like humans, it is a new and fragile stage for them, so it’s vital for you to do what’s best and not interfere too much to the natural rhythm of nature. With too much obstruction, it can actually be more harmful to your cat and her litter, even when you mean well.   It’s a warm-up period, she’s a new mom, and needs some help but also some space!  

The Ideal Post-Pregnancy Cat Habitat

  After the kittens come, it’s important to quarantine them in a separate space that is calm, quiet and warm. One of the biggest health concerns when it comes to newborn kittens is chilling, so ensure there is enough warmth to keep them safe. You may even consider investing in a portable heater to better heat a room, or heated pad that they can lay on.   Help keep the family together by keeping them in a box or contained area that the momma cat can enter and exit with ease. Line it with towels or disposable liners and change them frequently to keep the area clean and stink-free!   It’s important that the new mom has all of her necessities nearby and this includes the litterbox, food, and water.      The first two to three weeks after birth are critical for both the kittens and the mother. Postpartum concerns to look for are eclampsia (blood calcium deficiency). The mothers often present symptoms that include:  
  • Poor maternal instincts
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Rapid breathing
  • Panting
Also in this time, the kittens will grow quite quickly and the mother will display any adverse postpartum symptoms.   Week one: The kitten is quite small and typically fits in the palm of hands. Week two: The kittens begin to open their eyes. Week three: The teeth begin to develop and their eyes may change color.    

Health Concerns Kittens Face

  Kittens are subject to a variety of health concerns that include infectious diseases (respiratory infections), parasites, and congenital diseases. One of the most heart-wrenching but common health concerns in kittens is known as Fading Kitten Syndrome (FKS). While there may be many causes, the end result is the inability of the kitten to thrive. Signs of FKS including sleeping more than the litter and lethargy.  

Take Cues From Your Cat

  New kittens are so cute and cuddly and we know that you just want to hold them and be near them all the time — especially if you have kids — but let the new mother set the tone. If you’ve had her for a while, she may know and trust you and allow you near her litter right away, but if she was fostered or rescued, it may be a minute before she lets you in.     Just keep an eye on their progress and ensure that they’re moving about, nursing, and thriving. If they are, just look to mom for your next move and watch her body language.  

What To Feed Your Cat Post-Pregnancy

  After birth, it’s important to continue to feed your cat high-quality cat food, both wet and dry food are fine. Because nursing takes a toll on their bodies, they require more protein. Your cat will not only need more protein, but they will also need to eat more, often doubling their food consumption while nursing. The more food she eats, the more milk she’ll be able to produce for her new kittens.   These eating patterns will need to continue throughout the duration of nursing, in which kittens are typically weaned anywhere from eight to 10 weeks old.   Water is also a non-negotiable after birth — they require much more of it to better produce milk. Ensure that your cat always has clean, fresh water available. As far as feeding, you may want to adopt a “free choice” style of feeding where you leave a bowl full of food and they can come and go as they need and when they need.     A new litter is exciting to be around but it’s important you take the right steps and respect the new mom, so everyone can thrive and adapt to the new life.   If you have additional questions about the post-natal cat and kitten care or need a vet well-check, schedule an appointment at our Carrol Gardens vet clinic today.  

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