Westbury Animal Hospital
713.723.3666 · 4917 S. Willow Dr. Houston, Texas 77035 

Annie's Shenanigans

Thanksgiving Safety

Friday, November 21, 2014

Reviving a wonderful article by Dr. Chalkley for Thanksgiving advice this next week!

Thanksgiving Holiday: Food Safety for Your Cat and Dog

by: Jeff Chalkley

Around the Thanksgiving Holiday most of the emergencies that are seen at Westbury Animal Hospital are associated with food and pets.  Eating too much food, eating food in the trash can, or eating the wrong type of food – any one of these incidents could cause vomiting, diarrhea, or even more serious diseases (e.g. Pancreatitis).

I remember four (4) years ago I was on call for Thanksgiving when a black Labrador named “Bella” came in Thanksgiving night. Bella’s family was just sitting down to Thanksgiving dinner when they realized the basket of dinner rolls was left in the kitchen.  Much to their surprise when they entered the kitchen, the rolls were missing.  This otherwise sweet eight year old lab had counter surfed and found an amazing treasure, 24 dinner rolls. Within minutes the dinner rolls started expanding in poor Bella’s stomach.  She became so uncomfortable and painful that the Thanksgiving meal had to be canceled for the family. Bella was rushed to Westbury Animal Hospital for treatment, where within 24 hours she had made a full recovery. The family was so happy that she had recovered that they planned a celebratory dinner for Saturday night with a few of the people who had been at their house for Thursday night’s dinner.  Thankfully it was a smaller number of people because Bella struck again. This time only 12 dinner rolls, not the 24 she had eaten only two (2) days earlier.

Even the most unsuspecting food item can cause serious trouble for your cat or dog. We have included a list of food items to be careful with this coming Thanksgiving.

Turkey – A little nibble of turkey is fine for your cat or dog, but you should make sure it’s free of bones, that it is fully cooked, and it is white (breast) meat. White meat is less greasy and usually tolerated better by cats or dogs.  If you do give them turkey, make sure they don’t overindulge and run the risk of getting an upset stomach. Most of the other table scraps from the big feast are not a good idea for your cat or dog.

Alcohol – If you have a cat that likes to sneak a sip of people’s drinks, make sure you keep drinks with alcohol out of their reach. Many things can go wrong if a pet consumes alcohol.

Batter with raw eggs – Raw eggs can put your cat or dog at risk for salmonella, which could cause food poisoning. So make sure they do not lick the spoon or bowl to help you clean up after cooking.

Bread dough – When cats or dogs eat raw bread dough, body heat can cause the dough to rise in their stomach. The rising can cause vomiting, abdominal pain, bloating and may require surgery.

Candy – Chocolate is toxic to all pets. Any candy containing xylitol (e.g. Sugar free gum) is also dangerous for cats and dogs to ingest.

Onions and garlic – Both onions and garlic are popular ingredients in some holiday dishes and both can be toxic to cats.

Raisins, grapes and macadamia nuts – All three of these items are nice additions to holiday recipes but should be kept out of reach for cats and dogs as they can be toxic.

Rich and spicy foods – Rich and spicy foods may be a great treat for you, but they are not a good option for your pets and can cause more than an upset stomach. Stick with your pet’s regular meal options.

Sage –Sage and other herbs that contain essential oils and resins that can cause gastrointestinal upset if eaten in large quantities.

Make this holiday season special, and try to avoid a trip to the emergency room at Westbury Animal Hospital. Have a safe Thanksgiving Holiday.


Congratulations to Sergio

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Congratulations to Sergio!

Sergio is September's winner of the Annie's Top Dawg Award for going above and beyond for patient care, customer service, and teamwork!

Sergio has been working at Westbury Animal Hospital for 2 1/2 years as an Animal Care Taker. Sergio was nominated by his peers for his work ethic, professionalism and courtesy, his team attitude, and his attention to detail. 

Sergio has been complimented to management by many clients who enjoy his kindness and caring abilities with pets. 

Over the 2 1/2 years that Sergio has worked with Westbury, he has literally saved the lives of at least 3 boarders who were suffering from severe illnesses that Sergio picked up on and brought the pet to the attention of a doctor. Sometimes the most subtle changes in a pet is an indicator of a serious problem. His actions are that of a true animal lover.

We thank you Sergio for your positive attitude, your drive to do your best every day and for being a true team player!
 


Westbury Animal Hospital Care and Commitment 24 hours a day

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Westbury Animal Hospital is unique in that we offer emergency service 24 hours a day, 365 days a year with a doctor being on call every night and on the premises until midnight. I want to take a moment to highlight our urgent care hours that have become very popular. 

This past year, Westbury has been offering additional hours for sick patients that need to be seen but are not critical. These urgent care hours come at a regular office fee as long as your pet is not critical and the times are as follows:

            Monday- Friday   4pm-8pm                                                                                                    Saturday      12pm- 4pm

We have two emergency veterinarians who work during these hours in addition to serving as our in-hospital doctors all evenings until midnight. You should get to know Dr. Noe Galvan and Dr. Alissa Koschany who are here for your pets needs after regular business hours. 

We strive to get your pet’s visit processed quickly during these urgent care hours and pets are seen on a first come-first serve basis. Just like human urgent care facilities, pets that are more critical are always pushed ahead and seen as an emergency. We appreciate your patience as we work to get to your pet assessed a timely manner. You can assist us in helping you by considering some of the following:

1. Call ahead so we can pull your medical chart and prepare any equipment necessary to stabilize your pet.
 
2. Bring any pill bottles or medications your pet is taking and medical records if seen by another facility. If your pet suffers from any chronic illness (diabetes, glaucoma, hyperthyroidism, chronic kidney disease etc) please make us aware at the time of admission.
 
3. If you suspect your pet has ingested a toxin please bring the original container or a photograph of the plant. Knowing the toxic ingredient allows us to determine the proper treatment and give you a better idea of prognosis.
 
4. Keep all pets on a leash and all cats in a carrier.
 
5. Sometimes our technicians need to bring your pet to our treatment area for immediate attention before the doctor speaks with you. This allows our medical team to assess your pet and determine if any initial life saving procedures are necessary. The doctor will discuss the findings and work on a plan with you as soon as he/she feels your pet is stable enough.
 
6. If you are being seen for one pet, please remember there are usually many other sick patients awaiting the doctor’s attention. Keep the visit focused on your pet’s current illness and save wellness questions for an appointment with your regular veterinarian if possible.

7. It is best to choose one family member to act as your pets advocate and only one easily accessible phone number so that decisions can be made quickly if your pet needs life saving treatment.
 

We are always open during regular business hours for appointments if you know your pet is not acting normally, but we understand pets don't just get sick during the day and are happy to provide you with round the clock service when needed!

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