Category Archives: Medical

Guess the Breed: Guinness! (Dog DNA Test)

Guinness monitors workplace productivity.

Guinness monitors workplace productivity.

Today is Guinness’s 6th birthday! Guinness lives (and often works) with our Business Manager, Jesse, and he wears many hats. Guinness’s duties at Bigger Road include: office productivity manager, official toy and treat tester, staff therapist, fashion model, and monkey impersonator. Not bad for a 6-year-old!

For our office buddy’s birthday, we ordered a

Guinness works tirelessly as our official product tester

Guinness works tirelessly as our official product tester

DNA test to find out what mix of breeds makes him so awesome. Guinness would love your birthday wishes, but he’d also love your guesses about his breed before we reveal the official family tree in a couple of weeks!

Share your guesses (and birthday wishes!) on our Facebook page!

We’ll have some cool prizes for people who participate on Facebook by September 16th, 2015:

  • If you guess 1 breed component correctly: $20 off a dog DNA test for your own pet!
  • If you guess 2 (or more) breed components correctly: $40 off a dog DNA test for your own pet!
  • Guinness takes a well-deserved break.

    Guinness takes a well-deserved break.

    2 random winners (whether the guess is correct or incorrect) will get a $20 gift certificate to spend on treats, toys, and other fun stuff at our Pet Boutique in Springboro!

What are you waiting for? Join Guinness on Facebook!

 

GuinnessContest fine print:

  • Anyone who posts on the Bigger Road Facebook page by September 16, 2015, and provides a guess about Guinness’s breed mix is entered in the contest.
  • However, winners must be able to travel to one of our two clinics in order to collect prizes. The discounted DNA test requires a no-charge appointment to collect a blood sample, which can be scheduled at either clinic. The $20 gift certificate is for products at the Pet Boutique, which is located at our Springboro office.

 

Happy Birthday, Guinness!

 

 

Guess the Breed: Family Tree Revealed! (Dog DNA Test)

11986361_1131965496831102_5902303216084472193_nAs we told you a few weeks ago, our Dr. Nichole Olp has a beautiful pup named Isis. Dr. Olp recently ordered a DNA test for Isis to find out what mix of breeds make her friend who she is.

The results are in, and Isis’s family tree is surprising, to say the least!

Isis's Family Tree

Isis’s Family Tree

As you can see (and may have guessed from her pictures), Isis has Shar-Pei on both sides of her family tree. From there it gets a little more interesting, as the DNA test also revealed Staffordshire Bull TerrierWhippet, and Bernese Mountain Dog!

Curious about your own pet’s history? Read more about DNA testing for dogs and Call or contact us online!

RECALL: Bravo Chicken dog and cat food

RECALL: Bravo Chicken dog and cat food

RECALL: Bravo Chicken dog and cat food

Bravo Pet Foods of Manchester Ct. is voluntarily recalling specific lots of several dog and cat food formulas, due to potential Salmonella contamination.

What products are affected?

  • Bravo Blend Chicken diet for dogs & cats – Chub
    • Item #21-102
    • 2 lb. (32 oz)
    • Best By 12-05-16
    • UPC 8 29546 21102 8
  • Bravo Balance Chicken Dinner for dogs – Patties
    • Item #21-401
    • 3 lb (48 oz.) bag
    • Best By 12-05-16
    • 8 29546 21401 2
  • Bravo Balance Chicken Dinner for dogs – Chub
    • Item #21-402
    • 2 lb (32 oz.) chub
    • Best By 12-05-16
    • 8 29546 21402 9
  • Bravo Blend Chicken diet for dogs & cats -Patties
    • Item #21-508
    • 5 lb (80 oz.) bag
    • Best By 12-05-16
    • 8 29546 21508 8

Routine testing by the New York State Department of Agriculture found Salmonella contamination in the first formula above, and the company is recalling all formulas that were manufactured in the same facility on the same day as the affected product.

No pet or human illnesses associated with the products have been reported.

What should I do if I have recalled product?

Please stop using the affected product immediately, and safely dispose of it or return it to the place of purchase for a refund.

How does Salmonella affect people and animals?

Salmonella can cause serious illness or fatal infection in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Although healthy individuals may suffer only short term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal cramping and diarrhea. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers. Always use proper caution when handling raw foods.

Symptoms in pets are similar and may include vomiting, diarrhea, and lethargy.

Concerns about your pet’s health?

Call or contact us online right away.

Sign up for recall alerts!

Sign up here to be notified by e-mail whenever product recall or safety information is posted to our web site!

Further reading

Visit the Bravo Pet Foods web site for more information about the recall.

RECALL: “I and Love and You” brand Dog Treats

I and Love and You of Boulder, CO has announced a voluntary recall of two lots of Cow-Boom! Strips Beef Gullet dog treats. The recalled lots have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella bacteria. There have not been any reports of pet or human illnesses associated with the product.

What products are affected?

RECALL: "I and Love and You" dog treats

RECALL: “I and Love and You” dog treats

The recall affects Cow-Boom! Strips Beef Gullet dog treats in 2 oz packages with the following package information:

  • UPC: 8 18336 01134 4
  • Lot codes: 4T1 or 5T1
  • Best-by years: 2016 or 2017

What if I have the recalled product?

If you have purchased product affected by the recall, please stop using it immediately and return it to the place of purchase for a refund or replacement.

About Salmonella

Products contaminated with Salmonella bacteria pose health risks to pets, as well as people who handle the products.

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans. If your pet has consumed the product and has exhibited these symptoms, you should contact your veterinarian immediately.

Healthy people handling the product contaminated by Salmonella should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping, and fever. Although rare, Salmonella may result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract symptoms. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with the product should contact their healthcare providers immediately.

Questions about your pet’s health?

Call or contact us online!

Sign up for Recall Alerts!

Sign up here to be notified by e-mail any time we post recall or product safety information!

RECALL: Vital Essentials Frozen Beef Tripe dog food

RECALL: Vital Essentials Beef Tripe frozen dog food

RECALL: Vital Essentials Beef Tripe frozen dog food

Vital Essentials has announced a voluntary recall of its Beef Tripe formula frozen raw dog food because of potential Listeria contamination. The product was distributed in multiple states including Ohio.

The recall is announced two days after a similar recall of Stella & Chewy’s raw frozen and freeze-dried products, also because of potential Listeria contamination.

What is being recalled?

Testing by the Food and Drug Administration showed Listeria contamination in two batches of Vital Essentials Beef Tripe frozen raw dog food. The two recalled products are:

  • Vital Essentials Frozen Beef Tripe Patties, UPC 33211 00809, Lot # 10930, Best by date 20160210
  • Vital Essentials Frozen Beef Tripe Nibblets, UPC 33211 00904, Lot # 10719, Best by date 12022015

About Listeria

While the company’s announcement is downplaying the risk of Listeria bacteria to pets, handling Listeria-contaminated food also poses health risks to people, which the company did not mention in its announcement. 

Young or elderly people and those with compromised immune systems are at greater risk of fatal infection.

Healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms like fever, headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea. Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.

Symptoms in sick pets are similar.

What to do with recalled product

If you have purchased product affected by the recall, please stop using it immediately and carefully dispose of it. (The Maryland Department of Agriculture recommends disposing of affected product by wearing disposable gloves, placing product in double plastic bags, sealing it and throwing it away.)

Questions?

 

If you are concerned about the health of your pet, please Call us right away. Outside business hours, please call CARE Center of Dayton at (937) 428-0911 or MedVet Dayton at (937) 293-2714.

Sign up for recall alerts!

Sign up here to be notified by Bigger Road any time recall or product safety information is posted to our web site.

RECALL: Stella & Chewy’s Freeze-Dried and Frozen Cat and Dog Food

Stop sale: Stella & Chewy's Chicken Patties freeze-dried dog food

Stop sale: Stella & Chewy’s Chicken Patties freeze-dried dog food

Following the announcement two days ago of a Stop Sale on one variety of Stella & Chewy’s freeze-dried dog food, the company has announced a voluntary recall of many varieties of freeze-dried and frozen dog and cat food.

They are being recalled because they may be contaminated with Listeria bacteria, or may have been exposed to other foods that are potentially contaminated.

From the Stella & Chewy’s web site, the complete list of recalled products is at the bottom of this post. If you have any of the affected products, please stop using them immediately and safely dispose of them.

During the previous stop sale announcement, the Maryland Department of Agriculture recommended disposing of affected product by wearing disposable gloves, placing product in double plastic bags, sealing it and throwing it away.

About Listeria

Listeria monocytogenes bacteria in pet food poses a health threat and is potentially fatal both to pets, and to humans who handle or come in contact with contaminated food. Young or elderly people and those with compromised immune systems are at greater risk of fatal infection.

Healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms like fever, headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea. Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.

Symptoms in sick pets are similar. If you are concerned about the health of your pet, please Call us right away. Outside business hours, please call CARE Center of Dayton at (937) 428-0911 or MedVet Dayton at (937) 293-2714.

No pet or human illnesses have been reported with Stella & Chewy’s products, but a sample of Stella & Chewy’s freeze dried dog food tested positive for Listeria bacteria in FDA testing. The company is recalling all products from that production lot, as well as other products that may have come into contact with the affected production lot.

Complete Recall List

Product Description/Size/UPC/Lot #/Use By Date

Freeze-Dried Chewy’s Chicken Dinner for Dogs /15oz/UPC: 186011000045/Lot: 111-15 and Use By Date: 4/23/2016

Freeze-Dried Chewy’s Chicken Dinner for Dogs /15oz/UPC: 186011000045/Lot: 111-15 and Use By Date: 4/26/2016

Freeze-Dried Chick, Chick, Chicken Dinner for Cats/12oz/UPC: 186011000434/Lot: 111-15 and Use By Date: 4/29/2016

Freeze-Dried Chick, Chick, Chicken Dinner for Cats/12oz/UPC: 186011000434/Lot: 111-15 and Use By Date: 5/3/2016

Carnivore Crunch – Turkey Recipe/3.25oz/UPC: 186011001103/Lot: 111-15 and Use By Date: 5/3/2016 and 5/4/2016

Frozen Duck Duck Goose Dinner Morsels for Dogs/4lb/UPC: 186011001394/Lot: 111-15 and Use By Date: 4/21/2016

Frozen Chewy’s Chicken Dinner Morsels for Dogs/4lb/UPC: 186011001387/Lot: 111-15 and Use By Date: 4/21/2016

Frozen Surf ‘N Turf Dinner Patties for Dogs/6lb/UPC: 186011000533/Lot: 111-15  and Use By Date: 4/21/2016

Frozen Chewy’s Chicken Dinner Patties for Dogs/6lb/UPC: 186011000120/Lot: 111-15 and Use By Date: 4/21/2016

Frozen Chewy’s Chicken Dinner Patties for Dogs/3lb/UPC: 186011000038/Lot: 111-15 and Use By Date: 4/21/2016

Freeze-Dried Chick, Chick, Chicken Dinner for Cats/12oz/UPC: 186011000434/Lot: 104-15 and Use By Date: 4/23/2016

Freeze-Dried Chick, Chick, Chicken Dinner for Cats/12oz/UPC: 186011000434/Lot: 109-15 and Use By Date: 4/29/2016

Freeze-Dried Tantalizing Turkey Meal Mixers/18oz/UPC: 186011000229/Lot: 105-15 and Use By Date: 5/3/2016

Freeze-Dried Tantalizing Turkey Meal Mixers/18oz/UPC: 186011000229/Lot: 113-15 and Use By Date: 5/3/2016

Freeze-Dried Tantalizing Turkey Meal Mixers/9oz/UPC: 186011000205/Lot: 105-15 and Use By Date: 5/3/2016

Carnivore Crunch – Chicken Recipe/3.25oz/UPC: 186011001080/Lot: 110-15 and Use By Date: 5/3/2016

Freeze-Dried Chewy’s Chicken Dinners for Dogs/15oz/UPC: 186011000045/Lot: 114-15 and Use By Date: 4/26/2016

Freeze-Dried Tummy Ticklin’ Turkey Dinner for Cats/12oz/UPC: 186011000663/Lot: 114-15 and Use By Date: 5/4/2016

Freeze-Dried Tummy Ticklin’ Turkey Dinner for Cats/12oz/UPC: 186011000663/Lot: 115-15 and Use By Date: 5/4/2016

Freeze-Dried Salmon & Chicken Dinner for Cats/12 oz/UPC: 186011000403/Lot: 107-15 and Use By Date: 4/23/2016

Questions?

Please Call or contact us online with concerns about your pet’s health.

For product questions, please contact the manufacturer of Stella & Chewy’s at  888-477-8977.

Stop sale on Stella & Chewy’s freeze dried chicken patties

Stop sale: Stella & Chewy's Chicken Patties freeze-dried dog food

Stop sale: Stella & Chewy’s Chicken Patties freeze-dried dog food

UPDATE: RECALL – Multiple varieties of Stella & Chewy’s frozen and freeze-dried food for dogs AND cats have now been voluntarily recalled. See this post for more information.

The Maryland Department of Agriculture has issued a stop sale on Stella & Chewy’s brand freeze-dried chicken patties for dogs, due to the presence of Listeria bacteria in FDA testing.

The affected lot number is: 111-15. The bags will have a use by date of April 23, 2016.

UPDATE: This product, as well as many others, have now been voluntarily recalled. Click here for more information. 

From the Maryland Department of Agriculture web site:

Listeria is not only dangerous to dogs, it can also be deadly to small children, the elderly and those with auto immune disorders.  Consumers who have unopened bags of this dog food are urged to keep it sealed, away from people and to throw it away. Those who have opened bags of this dog food are urged to use disposable gloves, place them in double plastic bags, seal it and throw it away.

MDA has notified all distributors and a number of stores known to sell the product. The listeria was identified by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration which is undertaking a surveillance of raw pet food. The FDA notified the state today.

Questions about your pet’s health? Please Call or contact us online!

RECALL: Rachel Ray Nutrish wet cat food

The Food and Drug Administration is announcing a voluntary cat food recall.

Ainsworth Pet Nutrition has recalled 5 varieties of Rachel Ray Nutrish brand wet cat food, and multi-packs that contain these flavors, because of potentially elevated levels of Vitamin D. There are have been 11 reports of illness associated with the product.

Which products are affected?

A total of 7 products are affected.

RECALL: Rachel Ray Nutrish wet cat food

RECALL: Rachel Ray Nutrish wet cat food

Single Packs

  • PAW LICKIN CHICKEN AND LIVER (2.8 oz) – UPC 0 71190 00703 2 – All Best By Dates through AUG 17 2015
  • OCEAN FISH AND CHICKEN CATCH-IATORIE (2.8 oz) – UPC 0 71190 00704 9 – All Best By Dates through DEC 1 2016
  • OCEAN FISH A LICIOUS (2.8 oz)  – UPC 0 71190 00705 6 – All Best By Dates through DEC 1 2016
  • TUNA PURRFECTION (2.8 oz) – UPC 0 71190 00706 3 – All Best By Dates through DEC 1 2016
  • LIP SMACKIN SARDINE AND MACKEREL (2.8 oz) – UPC 0 71190 00707 0 – All Best By Dates through DEC 1 2016
RECALL: Rachel Ray Nutrish wet cat food

RECALL: Rachel Ray Nutrish wet cat food

Multi Packs

  • CHICKEN LOVERS VARIETY PACK (12 count pack of 2.8 oz cups) – UPC 0 71190 00777 3 – All Best By Dates through DEC 1 2016
  • OCEAN LOVERS VARIETY PACK (12 count pack of 2.8 oz cups) – UPC 0 71190 00778 0 – All Best By Dates through DEC 1 2016

What are the symptoms?

Excessive Vitamin D intake can result in the following symptoms, usually 12-36 hours after ingestion: vomiting or diarrhea, increased thirst and urination, and muscle tremors or seizures.

Pets experiencing these symptoms should see a veterinarian immediately.

What if I have the recalled product?

Stop using the product immediately and return it to the place of purchase for a refund.

Questions about your pet’s health?

Call or contact us online anytime!

Watch: Spooky the Cat’s Fear-Free Veterinary Visit

Our friends at DVM360 visited the Springboro Veterinary Center this week, and documented the visit of Spooky, one of our feline patients!

See what we’re doing to make your pet’s visit as stress-free as possible in this video!

Learn More

DVM360 spent two days with us, and have shared their experiences on their web site.  Check out these articles!

RECALL: Himalayan Ruff Roots Chews

RECALL: Himalayan Ruff Roots dog chews

RECALL: Himalayan Ruff Roots dog chews

Himalayan Corp., by way of PetSmart, has announced a recall of their Himalayan Ruff Roots natural chew toys because of possible metal contamination.

The recall affects all lot numbers of these products that were sold at PetSmart stores. The affected products are:

  • Himalayan Ruff Roots All Natural 4″ Sprout Dog Chew Toy – UPC 85301200439 – all lot codes
  • Himalayan Ruff Roots All Natural 5″ Stump Dog Chew Toy – UPC 85301200440 – all lot codes
  • Himalayan Ruff Roots All Natural 7″ Stalk Dog Chew Toy – UPC 85301200441 – all lot codes

If you have one of the recalled products, please stop using it immediately and return it to a PetSmart store for a refund.

For more information about the products: contact the Himalayan Corporation at 425-322-4295 or email info@himalayandogchew.com.

Questions about your pet’s health? Please Call or contact us online!

RECALL outside Ohio: OC Raw Frozen Dog Food

As reported on the Food & Drug Administration web site, OC Raw Dog has announced a voluntary recall of its Turkey & Produce Frozen Raw diet, due to potential salmonella contamination.

OC Raw Dog Food Recall

OC Raw has recalled 2,055 lbs. of its Turkey & Produce raw frozen diet

The recall affects 2,055 lbs. of the product that the manufacturer states were not distributed in Ohio, but to independent pet retailers in 4 other states. If you purchased this product in Ohio, we still suggest checking the lot number and expiration date.

How to tell if you have recalled product

Recalled product can be identified by the expiration date and lot numbers:

  • Use by date: 10/28/15
  • Lot number: 1511

About Salmonella

Salmonella poses health risks to both pets and people who come in contact with contaminated food. Humans can potentially be at risk even if pets show no sign of illness.

Symptoms of salmonella infection in dogs include lethargy, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, vomiting, and fever.

Symptoms in people include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramping, and fever.

What to do with recalled product

Stop using recalled product immediately and return it to the place of purchase for a refund. The manufacturer requests that you e-mail a picture of the product and its lot code to Olivia@ocrawdog.com to help them track distribution of recalled product.

Further reading

Questions about your pet’s health?

Call or contact us online anytime!

Underwater Treadmill featured in Dayton Daily News!

Clifford

Clifford enjoys an Underwater Treadmill session with Carmen

Check out this article in the Dayton Daily News, featuring Bigger Road’s Carmen Kolz and Canine Underwater Treadmill!

The article tells the story of Clifford, a stray golden retriever who was found by Mary Savage of Englewood after being hit by a car. Thanks to Mary and Clifford’s treadmill hydrotherapy with Carmen, Clifford got a new lease on life. 10 years later, he’s happy and healthy!

Our newly expanded Bigger Road Veterinary Center in Springboro offers the only underwater treadmill service for pets in the Miami Valley, and Carmen has more experience in treadmill hydrotherapy than anyone in the country!

Read more about the benefits of underwater treadmill, and Call or contact us online to find out if hydrotherapy can help your pet!

Underwater Treadmill

Clifford enjoys his Underwater Treadmill therapy

Canine Influenza: What you need to know

H3N2: Canine Influenza

H3N2: The current Canine Influenza outbreak is caused by a new strain of the virus

With ongoing media coverage of canine influenza, many clients here in Dayton are concerned about the health of their pets.

We understand your concern, and all available information tells us that pets in the Dayton area are safe. Here, summarized, is what you need to know about the current canine influenza outbreak:

  • The outbreak originated in the Chicago area, where over 1,000 illnesses and 6 pet deaths have been reported.
  • There are media reports of the virus spreading to other parts of the midwest, including Ohio. However, we have found no specific suspected or confirmed cases in Ohio, and have not seen any cases in the Dayton area.
  • This canine influenza is a different strain of the virus than previously thought. Because of this, vaccinating your pets using currently available vaccines will not provide your pet any additional protection. For this reason, we do not recommend preventative vaccination for our patients.
  • Symptoms of canine influenza may include high fever, loss of appetite, coughing, nasal discharge, and lethargy. However, some infected pets show no symptoms.

As always, if you have concerns about your pet’s health, including any unusual symptoms or behavior, please Call us!

If you’d like to read more about canine influenza, we recommend this article from Cornell University.

RECALL: Barkworthies Chicken Vittles Dog Chews

RECALL: Barkworthies Chicken Vittles Dog Chews

RECALL: Barkworthies Chicken Vittles Dog Chews

Barkworthies of Richmond, VA is recalling select lots of Barkworthies Chicken Vittles dog chews because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella. Salmonella can affect animals eating the products and there is risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these products.

The recalled product was distributed nationwide beginning on May 6th, 2014. The product can be identified by the Lot Code printed on the side of the plastic pouch. This product is being recalled as it has the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.

The recalled product can be identified as follows:

BARKWORTHIES CHICKEN VITTLES

Lot Code: 1254T1
Size: 16 oz. Plastic Pouch
Best Used by Date: May 2016
UPC: 816807011510

To obtain a refund, return unused product to the place of purchase, accompanied by this Refund Claim Form.

Questions about Salmonella or safe treats for dogs? Call or contact us online us!

#askbiggervet – October 15, 2014

This edition of #askbiggervet is all about senior pets! Get answers to your questions about noisy breathing, spaying older female dogs, and dental care for seniors!

Is noisy breathing in older dogs normal?
Courtney asked:

“Is noisy breathing in older dogs (12 years old) ever a normal occurrence? My dog snores and just has noisy breathing most of the time.”

Dr. Blakelock answers: Noisy breathing in older dogs is not uncommon, but it is not necessarily normal. It can be caused by various things such as laryngeal paralysis or an elongated soft palette. Any breathing changes should be evaluated by your veterinarian to make sure it is not anything serious and whether there is any treatment indicated.
If this still doesn’t work or your pet has dietary restrictions ask your veterinarian for other options.

Is it ever too late to spay a female dog?

Alysia asked:

“Do older female dogs experience doggie menopause? At what point is the risk greater than the benefit to spay an aged female? My 9 1/2 year old Komondor is having some weird symptoms I can’t figure out. I swear she was just in heat.”

Dr. Blakelock answers: Older intact female dogs are at risk for pyometra (infected uterus), which is life threatening and requires immediate surgery. Any changes warrant an examination by your veterinarian. As far as risk versus benefit if a dog is otherwise healthy than there should be minimal risk with spaying, while being intact is being at continuous risk for a pyometra.

What are the risks and benefits of extensive dental treatment on an older dog?

Shannen asked:

“What are the risks and benefits of extensive dental treatment on an older (8+ years) dog? What are some things to try to improve dental health in general?”

Dr. Crocker answers:

Great question, Shannen!

This is an important topic because dental disease affects approximately 80% of dogs and cats, and many times it goes unnoticed by the pets’ owners.

If a pet is suffering from dental disease, usually the benefits of providing relief outweigh the risks. People are often concerned about the general anesthesia required to treat dental disease in pets. However, age by itself is not generally considered to be a risk factor. If your pet’s overall health is good, heart is normal, and testing reveals normal organ and bone marrow function, anesthetic risk is very low when performed with appropriate safety measures. Benefits of treating diseased teeth include improved energy level, improved quality of life, better breath, and removal of pain.

Pain is a tricky thing to measure in pets. Pets with dental disease will often suffer in silence and show minimal or no outward signs of distress. Dogs feel pain just like we do, they just don’t show their pain in obvious ways. So if a tooth root infection would hurt you, you can bet it will hurt your pet.

One reason I am so passionate about providing good dental health to pets is that I have seen first-hand the sometimes dramatic improvements in pets’ lives I can give them by treating their dental problems.

The best things owners can do to promote their pets’ dental health are to begin brushing their pets’ teeth early in life, while developing a strong routine to continue throughout the pet’s life, and to have their pets examined at least annually by their veterinarians to look for hidden signs of dental disease.

More #askbiggervet
  • #askbiggervet – October 15, 2014 (10/15/2014) - This edition of #askbiggervet is all about senior pets! Get answers to your questions about abnormal breathing, spaying older female dogs, and dental care for seniors!
  • #askbiggervet – September 24, 2014 (9/21/2014) - In this edition of #askbiggervet, we tackle itching, picky eaters and the importance of year-round heartworm prevention!
  • #askbiggervet – September 11, 2014 (9/11/2014) - In the first edition of #askbiggervet, we're taking on how to dose flea, tick & heartworm prevention, how much to feed your cat, how far is too far to run with your pup, and more!

#askbiggervet – September 11, 2014

In the first edition of #askbiggervet, we’re taking on how to dose flea, tick & heartworm preventionhow much to feed your cathow far is too far to run with your pup, and more!

What is the best way to give your pet a flea/heartworm pill?
Mike asked:

“What is the best way to give your pet a flea/heartworm pill?”

Good question Mike. We know how hard this can be! Most of these pills need to be given with food, so use that in your favor. Offer them their pill in a delicious treat, right before their meal, so they are hungry and eager to eat.

If the traditional pill pocket style treat doesn’t work we suggest hiding the pill in a bit of bread, cheese, peanut butter, or even a marshmallow! You can try cutting the pill in half or quarters and giving it in smaller bites if need be. You might try offering a treat without the pill first as a “decoy”.

If this still doesn’t work or your pet has dietary restrictions ask your veterinarian for other options.

How do you know how much to feed your cat a day?

Jenice asked:

“How do you know how much to feed your cat a day?”

Another great question. While you can certainly start with the recommendations on the bag or cans, many cats have other needs to consider.

We customize feeding plans that take into account your pet’s current weight, ideal weight, age, lifestyle, and what you prefer to feed. That way we can meet both the needs of you and your cat!

We can send you a custom feeding plan today – it’s free – or we can put one together at your next visit.

Does filtered water help with bladder crystals?

Deborah asked:

“My cat get crystals in his bladder, he is on CD Hill’s Prescription Diet Urinary Tract Health food. I have been told from a friend that the crystals form due to calcium in faucet water. Is this true and if so what water is best for him? Would a pur water filter hooked up to my faucet be something that would take out the calcium?”

Deborah, while a water filter certainly won’t hurt, we don’t have any studies telling us it makes a difference in these cases. What we do have is lots of science behind how the prescription diets prevent cats from forming crystals.

However, because we want cats that form crystals to drink more water, our best suggestion is to offer the water he thinks tastes best! We find that many cats prefer a recirculating water fountain and recommend that owners try this to get their cats to drink more.

How far can my puppy run with me?

Jodi asked:

“Is 2 miles too long of a distance to jog with my 8 mos pit/lab mix puppy? She tolerates it well then still has energy to play at home, but I don’t want to harm her bones/growth?”

This is a really good question Jodi and we’re so happy that you’re including your sweet pup in your exercise routine!

When exercising outdoors with your dog you want to consider the same factors you would if you were exercising alone: temperature, hydration, paying attention to your body, and working up longer distances slowly.

The one additional thing you need to think about is the ground. Dogs can burn their paw pads on hot pavement, and if they aren’t used to running outside their pads may be tender and will need to toughen over time. Keep walks short or stick to the grass if the pavement is hot or they’re new at outdoor exercise.

You want to make sure they have the fitness and strength to handle the exercise. Most importantly, have fun and don’t forget to bring a baggie for potty break cleanups!

More #askbiggervet
  • #askbiggervet – October 15, 2014 (10/15/2014) - This edition of #askbiggervet is all about senior pets! Get answers to your questions about abnormal breathing, spaying older female dogs, and dental care for seniors!
  • #askbiggervet – September 24, 2014 (9/21/2014) - In this edition of #askbiggervet, we tackle itching, picky eaters and the importance of year-round heartworm prevention!
  • #askbiggervet – September 11, 2014 (9/11/2014) - In the first edition of #askbiggervet, we're taking on how to dose flea, tick & heartworm prevention, how much to feed your cat, how far is too far to run with your pup, and more!

Trifexis is still safe for your pet

Trifexis-Logo.193131124_std (1)You may have seen a recent news broadcast warning dog owners about the heartworm and flea product, Trifexis. We wouldn’t normally comment on a story like this, but we wanted to make sure that all our clients know that our doctors are aware of the segment and we have investigated all the claims made.

The loss of a pet is always devastating, but at this point in time, no one has been able to link any pet deaths to Trifexis. Because Trifexis stays in dogs’ systems for a full month, it does end up being listed on FDA reports when side effects or death are reported, even when it is not the cause of death.

The loss of a pet is always devastating, but at this point in time, no one has been able to link any pet deaths to Trifexis.

The manufacturer has thoroughly investigated the death of any dog reported to have Trifexis in their system at the time of death, and have hired independent pathologists to review the cases. To date, no one has been able to link cause of death to administration of Trifexis.

We’ve been prescribing Trifexis to our patients since 2012 and have sent home many thousands of doses. All of our doctors and our entire staff use Trifexis with their pets. We trust it to safely prevent heartworm disease and kill fleas.

All of our doctors and our entire staff use Trifexis with their pets. We trust it to safely prevent heartworm disease and kill fleas.

If one of our doctors has prescribed a medication to your pet, it’s only after weighing the benefits and risks and determining it to be the best treatment for your pet. There is no medication that’s perfect for every pet. Pets can be sensitive to many things, and if there is an issue with any medication we make changes.

Above all, while we’re comfortable using Trifexis, you may not be, and that’s okay. If you have questions or concerns please call and speak to your veterinarian today. We are happy to talk to you about your concerns or help you select a product that you feel more comfortable using.

See more information about Trifexis from the manufacturer.

Dr. Conan Crocker has also compiled some of the most important facts from the data we’ve reviewed:
In a broadcast that aired in Atlanta late last year, WSB-TV featured three cases in which the reporter attempted to connect the dogs’ deaths to the use of Trifexis. There was no established link between Trifexis use and deaths, despite the reporter’s repeated attempts to make that connection.

Trifexis has been rigorously tested and approved as safe by the U.S. FDA, the European Medicines Agency and many other countries around the world to kill fleas and prevent infestations, to treat and control intestinal parasites and to prevent heartworm disease.
Elanco has complete confidence in the safety and efficacy of Trifexis. Since the product came to market in January 2011, all reported potential adverse events have been reported to the FDA and appropriately investigated.

There is no link established between product use and death.

Still have questions about Trifexis or heartworm and flea prevention? Call or contact us online anytime.

Bigger Road patients benefit from underwater treadmill

Underwater treadmill is gaining popularity for rehabilitation purposes, as well as for general fitness. We wanted to share videos of two of our patients, Maggie and Kylie, who have benefited from this therapy!

We refer clients to Carmen Kolz’s Canine Underwater Treadmill for treatment. When our Springboro location expands in early 2015, we will be able to offer this therapy to patients directly!

Maggie Burke


Maggie, a patient of Dr. Conan Crocker, had anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) surgery in 2009 and 2010.  The underwater treadmill has allowed Maggie to maintain strength and mobility, and control her weight through low-impact exercise.

Kylie Richards


Kylie sees Dr. Crocker for a bilateral cruciate ligament rupture. Kylie began underwater treadmill therapy in June, 2014, with the goals of improved strength and mobility. While she may need surgery in the future, Kylie’s owners have noted a marked improvement since beginning treadmill therapy.
Please Call or contact us online to find out if underwater treadmill therapy can benefit your pet!

Keeping pets cool on hot days

With the cold days finally behind us (they are behind us, right?), it’s time for fun in the sun! But keeping your furry friends safe from dehydration and overheating requires a little bit of planning, and knowing what to look for.

Trupanion has some great tips for keeping your pet cool and happy, and things to watch out for in hot weather. Learn more here!

Trupanion - Keeping Pets Cool in Hot Weather

Trupanion – Keeping Pets Cool on Hot Days

Questions about your pet and summer activities? Call or contact us online anytime!

Update on Merial PureVax feline rabies vaccine

Merial recently announced that the PureVax Feline rabies vaccine, which is Bigger Road’s choice for vaccinating cats against rabies, may be unavailable until June 2014.

Bigger Road chooses the PureVax feline rabies vaccine because our doctors feel that it is the safest product available for vaccinating your pet against rabies.

Bigger Road chooses the PureVax feline rabies vaccine because our doctors feel that it is the safest product available for vaccinating your pet against rabies. Other vaccines on the market contain additional ingredients that are suspected to have an increased risk of reactions.

If your cat is due for an examination and rabies vaccine, we encourage you to keep your appointment. It is still very important that your pet receives their scheduled examination, and you will have the opportunity to discuss the options for rabies vaccination with your veterinarian.

If we are unable to vaccinate your pet at the time of your appointment, we will be happy to schedule a future visit with no additional exam charges to perform the vaccination, once the PureVax rabies vaccine becomes available.

Merial Purevax feline rabies

Merial’s PureVax feline rabies vaccine is currently on back order

If your pet finds office visits stressful, or if an additional visit is inconvenient for you, we also offer feline house calls for clients within 8 miles of either clinic, for an additional charge.

Questions about your pet’s vaccinations or feline house calls? Call or contact us online anytime!

It’s allergy season! We can help with pet allergies.

Those of us who suffer from seasonal allergies are certainly feeling them right now! Our pets can also suffer from environmental, food, and contact allergies. Excessive scratching, licking, or hot spots are all signs to watch out for, but isolating and treating allergies in your pet is very difficult to do on your own.

PetsMatterDuring your visit, make sure you tell us about any  unusual behavior or symptoms, so we can identify the problem and help your pet feel better. Call or contact us online anytime with questions or concerns.

Also check out this article from PetsMatter for more information on pet allergies.