Illustrated Articles

Dogs + Care & Wellness

  • Body condition scoring is an effective objective method of determining if a pet is at a healthy weight. There are 2 scoring systems: one out of 5 and the other out of 9. This handout outlines how to body condition score pets and recommends tracking body condition score to keep pets at a healthy weight, an important factor in pets living longer with less health complications.

  • Having a litter of puppies is an exciting event, but not without its responsibilities. At appropriate ages, puppies should be dewormed and start their vaccine series. They can start making their way to new homes by eight to ten weeks of age.

  • For the next two months, even if everything went smoothly with the birth, you have a lot of work to do! After the birthing process, clean up the mother as much as possible without upsetting her using a warm water and washcloth. Do not use any soaps or disinfectants unless instructed to by your veterinarian. Remove any soiled newspaper or bedding from her whelping box. Normally the new mother will spend most of her time with the puppies. It is important to have the mother and puppies examined by your veterinarian within forty-eight hours of birth. The veterinarian will check the mother to make sure there is no infection and that she is producing sufficient milk. The puppies will also be examined to make sure that there are no birth defects such as cleft palates. Any necessary medications or injections will be administered during this visit.

  • This handout summarizes the care of the pregnant dog and the puppies following birth. Topics include eye care, diet, and instructions for weaning the pups at the appropriate time.

  • Although most dogs will give birth without the need for human or veterinary assistance, certain problems can arise which require veterinary attention. It is essential to closely monitor your pet during birthing and seek veterinary care if you have any concerns.

  • This handout is a basic care guide for pregnant dogs, outlining changes in nutritional requirements and physical activity, and pregnancy testing.

  • Breeding dogs is a great responsibility that should not be done just because an owner wants puppies from their beloved dog. There are many potential consequences to the bitch and the puppies that need to be taken into account and prevented if possible, including producing puppies from parents with known heritable problems and medical care of the bitch and puppies. Breeding does not reduce unwanted behavior in male dogs and there is no guarantee that puppies will be anything like the parent, so this is not valid reasons to breed a dog. Many puppies are abandoned at dog shelters or worse because of inappropriate breeding practices. There are usually many abandoned dogs looking for homes that an owner can find what they are looking for through shelters or rescue organizations.

  • This handout summarizes whelping (giving birth) in dogs. Instructions for preparing your pregnant dog for delivery and how to assist her if necessary are outlined. Situations requiring veterinary assistance are also described.

  • It is estimated that over two-thirds of dogs over the age of three have periodontal disease (infection of the tissues surrounding the teeth). Brushing three times a week is the minimum recommendation to help remove plaque and prevent tartar accumulation. In order to be successful at brushing your dog's teeth, you must make it a positive experience for both of you. Do not use human toothpaste or baking soda. A list of dental products and diets that have been accepted by the Veterinary Oral Health Counsel can be found on www.vohc.org.

  • A caesarean section is a major surgery usually performed in an emergency to help deliver puppies. As with any anesthesia, the dog may be sleepy but should be able to eat a high quality diet and nurse puppies within a few hours. The dog should be monitored for fever, abnormal vulvar discharge, and abnormalities at her incision. It is important to ensure that puppies are able to nurse well. If not, or if the dog can not produce enough milk, then commercial milk replacer is recommended. Colostrum ingestion is important for immune protection. If puppies are not nursing within the first 24 hours, then they will need additional veterinary care. Ambient temperature is important in the first 2-4 weeks after birth as puppies cannot regulate their temperature well.

Location Hours
Monday8:00am – 8:00pm
Tuesday8:00am – 4:00pm
Wednesday8:00pm – 8:00pm
Thursday8:00am – 4:00pm
Friday8:00am – 6:00pm
SaturdayClosed
SundayClosed