Client Education


Gastric dilation–volvulus (GDV), or “bloat,” is a life-threatening condition in which a dog’s stomach fills with air and becomes twisted. Gas builds up in the twisted stomach and stretches it. This stretching, also called distention, is extremely painful and limits the amount of blood that can reach other parts of the body. When blood can’t reach body tissues to supply oxygen, those tissues can die. GDV is an emergency situation, and if not treated immediately, it can be fatal. Please see the attachment for more information about the signs of bloat.

We also encourage you to print out the Bloat form for pet sitters.

Pancreatitis in dogs

Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas, an organ in the abdomen that helps the body digest food. Acute pancreatitis can occur after a dog eats fatty food such as pork, beef, and some other human foods; dogs that get into garbage can develop pancreatitis. Learn more about the causes and signs of Pancreatitis

Explaining pet loss to children

Our companion animals are often treasured members of the fam-ily, and we mourn for them when they die or are euthanized. It is important to recognize your feelings of loss and grief and to ex-press them in your own way. In addition, when your child is at-tached to a pet that dies or is euthanized, it is important to recog-nize his or her feelings of loss and help your child express those feelings. Learn more about Explaining Pet Loss to Children.

Diabetes in cats

Diabetes is one of the most common feline endocrine disorders, but caring for a diabetic cat isn’t as hard as it sounds. Diabetes happens when the pancreas fails to produce adequate amounts of insulin, a hormone necessary for controlling blood glucose (sugar) levels. Diabetes is usually easy to diagnose. Most cats show classic signs, including excessive urination, excessive thirst, strong appetite, and weight loss. High blood sugar levels and the presence of sugar in the urine usually allow for a straightforward diagnosis, but occasionally some additional tests may be necessary before arriving at a definitive diagnosis. Learn more about diabetes in cats.

First aid for your pets

It’s important to remain calm when your pet has been in an accident. Approach your pet with caution, animals can bite or scratch as a reaction to the pain. If stabilization is possible (for example, direct pressure to slow down bleeding), try it—ideally while on the way to the veterinarian. If this is not possible, just get to the veterinarian as quickly as possible. Even if your pet seems all right after an injury, take him or her to the veterinarian. Injuries involving an eye, the head, a large wound, breathing difficulty, sudden or severe swelling, pain, significant blood loss, or trauma (such as a car accident) should be seen immediately. Learn more about First Aid and Your Pet. You can also reference the Emergency Instructions page on our website.

We also encourage every pet owner to have a first aid kit ready. Learn more about the Ten essential items for your pet’s first aid kit.

Foreign body surgery

Foreign Body Surgery is a procedure to remove an object from a pet’s digestive tract that will not pass through on its own. Diagnosis of a foreign body is usually made by physical examination and radiographs (x-rays). This is typically an emergency procedure that must be performed before injury occurs to the esophagus, stomach, or intestines. Learn more about Foreign Body Surgery.

Common Questions about kennel cough

If your dog develops a cough, it is important to see a veterinarian to determine the cause. Kennel cough is very contagious and we see it year round. Learn more about Commonly asked questions about Kennel Cough.