Frequently Asked Questions
- What should I feed my dog and cat?
Most dogs and cats will do fine on just about any name brand, commercial pet food. Consistency is the key. 90% of gastrointestinal problems in pets are due to dietary indiscretions. So once you find the diet that works best for your pet, stick with it. Treats are fine if they are also consistently the same, well tolerated and not overfed. For those special situations, we carry a full line of prescription diets from Hills, Royal Canin, and Nature's Variety.
- My pet itches a lot. What should I do?
There are many causes for persistent itching in dogs and cats. The three main causes are: 1.) Parasites like, fleas, mites and ticks, 2.) Bacterial and/or yeast infections, and 3.) Allergies to food or common environmental contaminants like dust, mold, grasses and pollens. The key to controlling skin disease is to properly diagnose the underlying cause. The Goodfriends Veterinary Clinic carries a full line of flea and tick control products. For those patients with allergies we employ state of the art technology for detecting food and environmental sensitivities. www.greerlabs.com
- Where can I get good, reliable pet health information online?
- Lyme Disease. What should I know?
We live in the heart of Lyme Disease country. We recommend that all dogs be tested and vaccinated annually for Lyme Disease. Because Lyme Disease is caused by a bacterium, Borrelia Burgdorferi, vaccination alone cannot be expected to protect 100% of the time. We strongly recommend dog owners use year-round, prescription oral or topical tick products available through your veterinarian, in addition to annual vaccinations and testing.
- Hyperthyroidism in cats. What is it?
Hyperthyroidism, or overactive thyroid glands, is a common disease of older cats. It can easily be overlooked as many affected cats show few signs early in the course of the disease. Starting at age 8, we recommend annual testing for thyroid disease. Affected cats can have signs which include rapid heart rate, weight loss, excessive appetite and thirst, vomiting and increased litter box habits. It can be confused for other, older cat diseases like diabetes and kidney or heart disease, so a veterinarian's attention is crucial for proper diagnosis and treatment.
- How important is good dental health to my pet?
Very. Because of their gentle natures and limited ability to communicate it's hard for them to demonstrate dental/oral pain. Signs of dental pain can be: dropping food, turning of the head side to side while chewing, flinching when you manually approach their mouth. Clearly, foul odor or discharge from the mouth should be attended to immediately. What may appear as mild plaque buildup on the teeth can actually be significant gingival and dental disease. An annual checkup with our staff can help identify dental problems early in your dog or cat. We perform numerous dental procedures from routine cleaning to dental X-rays and extractions when necessary.
- What pet adoption and rescue programs do you participate in?
We accept spay and neuter vouchers for pets adopted from The Connecticut Humane Society, as well as vouchers from The State of Connecticut Department of Agriculture for discounted vaccines,spays and neuters. We also participate in the American Kennel Club's Veterinary Network Certificate Program that gives owners a certificate for a free complete physical exam when they register their puppy with the AKC. For more information on this program, please visit www.AKC.org.