Wellness exams are intended to evaluate your pet through regular check-ups. We recommend yearly wellness exams for younger animals and twice yearly for older animals. Wellness exams allow your veterinarian to get a complete picture of your pet’s overall health and screen for routine but potentially problematic diseases. During the check-up exam, Dr. Shanda Myers will evaluate your pet thoroughly, including the eyes, nose, mouth, teeth, gums, heart, lungs and all other structures down to the tail. She will look for any lumps or recent growths on the skin and give you a comprehensive list of their findings. An exam is also an excellent time to discuss any changes in your pet’s behavior, nutritional advice and other health issues. Any concerns you have or your pet’s overall well being should and will be discussed at this visit.
Vaccinations are designed to help protect your pets from diseases. Brandon Valley Veterinary Clinic believes in creating a customized vaccination schedule for your pet to help reduce the administration of excess vaccinations. We will develop a vaccination schedule and ongoing booster routine that accounts for your pet’s lifestyle, overall health, risk for exposure to infectious disease, and other factors. Brandon Valley Veterinary Clinic wants to help protect your pet and make the vaccination process as safe, stress free and comfortable as possible. Dr. Myers will discuss your pet's daily life with you, and advise you on the right vaccinations to keep your pet healthy.
Imagine what your mouth would feel and smell like if you never brushed your teeth or went to the dentist. For many dogs and cats, this is a painful reality. The American Veterinary Dental Society says more than 80% of dogs and 70% of cats have dental disease by the age of 3. Dental (or periodontal) disease is the most frequently diagnosed health problem in pets. Common signs of dental disease include:
- Yellow or brown buildup (tartar) on the teeth
- Changes in eating or chewing habits
- Red, swollen, or bleeding gums
- Pawing at the face
- Bad breath
- Loose teeth
- Excessive drooling
Even if your dog or cat doesn’t have these symptoms, we recommend that you have a veterinarian evaluate your pet’s dental health at least once a year. Bacteria and food debris accumulate around the teeth and, if left unchecked, will lead to deterioration of the soft tissue and bone surrounding the teeth. This decay can result in irreversible periodontal disease, tooth loss, and possibly expensive oral surgery.
Dental disease can also affect other organs in the body: Bacteria in the mouth can get into the bloodstream and cause serious infections in the kidneys, liver, lungs, and heart. If these problems aren’t caught and treated quickly enough, they can result in death. A physical exam combined with appropriate laboratory work can determine if infection in the mouth has spread.
Schedule your pet’s dental exam today! We can also help show you how to brush your pet’s teeth and recommend foods and treats that will help combat plaque and tartar buildup.
Flea & Tick
Fleas, ticks, and internal parasites are a nuisance to you and your cat or dog. Many parasites can be transmitted from your pet to your human family members. Getting your pet’s stool checked is a great way to catch intestinal parasites affecting your pet. Early detection brings early treatment and prevention of secondary disease processes due to external and internal parasites. Brandon Valley Veterinary Clinic offers both flea and tick prevention, as well as medication for internal/external parasites.
We have Frontline Top Spot or a chewable for dogs starting at 12 weeks of age, depending on the time of year, and continue from April to the end of summer for flea prevention. There’s a Lyme vaccine for dogs (especially hunting dogs) given in the springtime due to tick times. There is a flu vaccination to help reduce the risk of your dog contracting canine influenza. The Lepto vaccine is recommended for all dogs who are outside a lot, in dog parks, drink out of puddles. Leptospirosis is contagious across species from contaminated urine, and if not caught early, it can be deadly.
When they bite, mosquitos can transmit heartworm infection, which can cause big problems in your pet. These parasites can severely, and sometimes, fatally damage the heart, lungs and blood vessels of your dog or cat. Some pets may not show any signs of infection, and in those that do, the symptoms can vary widely.
In dogs, signs of heartworm disease and range from coughing, fatigue and weight loss to difficulty breathing and a swollen abdomen (caused by fluid accumulation from heart failure). Canine heartworm infection can also lead to a life-threatening complication called “caval syndrome”, which is a form of liver failure. Without prompt surgical intervention, this condition usually causes death.
Cats can also get heartworm infection. Cats can suffer from a syndrome referred to as heartworm-associated respiratory disease (HARD). The symptoms can be subtle and may appear to be asthma or allergic bronchitis. Signs of respiratory distress, such as rapid or difficulty breathing, wheezing, and panting, are common. Other symptoms include coughing, vomiting, and loss of appetite and/or weight.
There is an easy way to keep your dog or cat safe by administering monthly heartworm prevention medications, which also protect your pet against other parasites such as roundworm, hookworms, whipworms, ear mites, fleas, and ticks. Upon request, we can recommend the best prevention for your pet. There’s also a yearly shot at 12 weeks of age to prevent heartworm and intestinal parasites including roundworm and hookworm.
Accidents happen and our entire office is ready to help care for sick or injured pets. Our caring and qualified staff can give medical care for poisoning, car accidents, illness, problem pregnancies, or bites, among other causes. Our state of the art facility is fully equipped and ready to perform needed surgery. When necessary and providing there’s time, we’ll do x-rays and blood lab work before administering anesthesia, to make sure your pet is healthy enough. Your pet's health and comfort are our first concern, and we do everything we can to make sure your pet is quickly on the road to recovery.
Brandon Valley Vet Clinic provides surgical services ranging from routine to advanced procedures including spays, mass removals, abdominal, reconstructive, and minor trauma surgery.
Our surgical suite is equipped with state-of-the-art equipment and a fully trained staff to help ensure the safety and comfort of your pet during surgery. We take every precaution so your pet receives the highest-quality care possible.
Before surgery, we conduct a physical exam and we closely monitor your pet during surgery and throughout recovery.
Anesthesia and Patient Monitoring
Our top concern is the health and safety of your pet. If your pet is scheduled for surgery, a dental procedure, or any other service that requires anesthesia, we want you to feel confident your pet is in the best of hands.
We are trained to be sure your pet is as safe as possible, whether a procedure requires general anesthesia or a local anesthetic.
Our staff uses the safest type of anesthesia, and we monitor your pet closely throughout the procedure (no matter how routine) to ensure the safety of your pet. We offer pre-surgery blood work, especially required for our older or higher risk patients, before any procedure, and we monitor vital signs throughout the procedure. A technician will continually assess your pet through the procedure and throughout recovery.
The procedure to spay your pet has many benefits, including preventing female animals from becoming pregnant and reproducing. It can also help your dog or cat live a longer, healthier life. Spaying will not change your pet’s personality.
By spaying your female pet, you are protecting her against potentially deadly bacterial infections, reproductive tract diseases, and several types of cancer. And you won’t have to worry about her going into heat, avoiding the mess that often accompanies the heat cycle in female dogs and the pacing and crying that happens with female cats. Spaying your pet will also help control the dog and cat overpopulation problem, keeping more animals out of shelters. We recommend spaying mature small dogs at 5-6 months, medium dogs at 6-7 months and large dogs at 7-12 months, depending on the breed.
Spaying, which involves removing the ovaries and uterus, is a surgical procedure and does need to be performed with the pet under anesthesia. We follow strict protocols and continually monitor your pet’s vital signs to help ensure her safety. Please see the descriptions under Anesthesia and Patient Monitoring for more information on what we do to keep your pet safe.
Castrating your pet has many benefits. The procedure prevents male animals from reproducing, which can help your dog or cat live a longer, healthier life. Castrating will not change your pet’s personality.
By castrating your pet, you’re reducing or eliminating his risk for prostate and testicular cancer, as well as sexually transmitted diseases. Neutering will also reduce or eliminate undesirable and embarrassing behavior, including roaming, fighting, humping, and spraying. In addition, neutering your pet will help control the dog and cat overpopulation problem, keeping more animals out of shelters.
Castrating, which involves removing the testicles, is a surgical procedure and does need to be performed with the pet under anesthesia. We follow strict protocols and continually monitor your pet’s vital signs to help ensure his safety. Please see the descriptions under Anesthesia and Patient Monitoring for more information on what we do to keep your pet safe.
To set an appointment to have your pet spayed or castrated, or to learn more about this procedure, call 605-582-8575 or visit our clinic. If you are struggling with the decision of whether to spay or castrate your pet, please call us so we can discuss your concerns with you.
The use of a high-powered laser is a means of cutting tissue. It minimizes bleeding during the procedure and reduces pain and swelling after your pet’s procedure. It also promotes quicker healing time. Pets that undergo laser surgery tend to recover more quickly and require less postoperative pain medications.
Should you choose this surgery for your cat, we recommend doing this at the same time as castration or spay. It’s best to do this procedure when your cat is a kitten, but if necessary, it can be done when your cat is an adult.
Before starting any procedure, Dr. Myers and her staff will walk you through the process, potential complications, post-surgery care and will be happy to answer any questions you may have.
We can use a laser to remove the claws or utilize a blade, using delicate care and years of experience, to remove the front paw claws. Rarely do we remove all four. The procedure entails an incision on each toe to remove each claw carefully while another staff person is monitoring your pet’s pulse, blood pressure, and vital signs. This allows us to maximize the pet’s safety and comfort throughout the procedure.
After removal of claws, a recovery process follows. At Brandon Valley Vet Clinic, we strive to make the procedure as quick and as painless as possible.
Paws are bandaged for 24 hours immediately following the surgery. It’s important to carefully monitor your pet’s recovery during this time. We provide pain medication to administer at home after surgery. This helps keep your cat comfortable and helps reduce the likelihood cats will want to chew on their feet. An E-collar may be necessary if the cat won’t leave the incisions alone.
A dewclaw is a digit on the foot of many mammals. It is situated higher up on the paw than the rest of the claws and does not make contact with the ground. Therefore, the nail doesn’t get worn off by exercise and the dog running.
Removal of dewclaws is an elective procedure can be done at the time of castration or spay. We recommend removal of the dewclaw on the back legs if they are very loose, contain very little attachment and are likely to get torn by normal activity. If the dog is going to be doing a lot of hunting or running through large amounts of brush and thick vegetation, we recommend removal of the front dewclaws as well.
Our on-site, modern, digital X-ray equipment provides high quality radiographs to assist in the quick diagnosis of many disorders, allowing greater viewing and a clearer image of all body parts. Images created in a digital format also make it much easier to make copies of your pet’s x-rays for referral or travel (if needed). Images are created directly onto a computer screen for quick access and easier visualization. Digital X-ray equipment allows us to take a picture of bony structures, heart, lungs, bladder stones, and internal organs. Foreign bodies can be found using barium studies if necessary.
Diagnostic ultrasound is a state-of-the-art technology that uses sound waves rather than radiation (as used in x-rays) to thoroughly examine specific internal organs. It is a pain-free, non-invasive way to diagnose many problems with your pet.
Through ultrasound, Dr. Myers can get a thorough view of your pet’s internal organs, allowing her to visually assess the organs without invasive surgery. Diagnostic ultrasound can be used to help determine heart function, find abnormalities or tell us normal liver, spleen, bladder, lymph nodes, kidneys, etc.
We provide this state-of-the-art medical and diagnostic testing for our patients in-house at our clinic to provide the best in veterinary care for your pet.
Blood work and laboratory tests are essential in the diagnostic treatment of your pet. Whether through our in-house lab work or in partnership with an outside lab, we can perform a variety of tests including blood profiles, disease screenings, pre-surgical blood work, and therapeutic drug level monitoring.
Through these tests we can effectively assess and monitor your pet’s condition, diagnose illnesses, and make referrals to specialists if necessary.
We recommend yearly baseline screenings for those geriatric animals as they can have a disease starting without any clinical symptoms.
Brandon Valley Veterinary Clinic offers digital thermal imaging to our patients. This noninvasive technique allows us to capture and view images or your pet’s thermal gradients. Because your pet cannot tell us where it hurts and does not always show areas of discomfort, these thermal imaging views will allow us to see areas of inflammation and poor circulation. Used in conjunction with a physical exam, thermal imaging is a helpful diagnostic tool that helps us provide better care for your pet.
This can help us find areas of inflammation and problems in an animal that won’t show pain during palpation or manipulations. It also can help us to follow response to laser treatments, anti-inflammatory treatments, and monitor the healing process.
For more information on the benefits of thermal imaging, call us at605-582-8575
Laser therapy is an advanced treatment option for many veterinary patients. It uses a beam of laser light to penetrate tissue.
Laser therapy can be used for a variety of disease processes, including; Osteoarthritis, Hip dysplasia, chronic/acute pain or trauma, skin conditions, ear infections, post-surgical healing, wound/laceration healing, and much more.
Laser therapy offers a drug-free approach to aid in treatment plans for pets who may be suffering from pain. Laser therapy can reduce healing time through reduction of inflammation and cell regeneration. Therapy sessions are non-invasive and well tolerated by our patients.
Treatment protocols are specific to each patient and will vary in duration and complexity. In general, most pets experience an improvement in their condition within the first few treatments. Laser therapy can also be used to enhance other treatment plans recommended by Dr. Myers.
To learn more about our laser therapy service, please call our office at 605-582-8575
If a pet is healthy, their owner typically choses a pet food based on whether or not their pet will eat it. Cost may also play a factor in your decision. However, not all pet foods are created equal. And feeding the right amount is not as simple as following the directions on the package as those are just guidelines.
Choosing an appropriate diet can set your pet on a path of lifelong good nutrition and help prevent many problems, including allergies, nutritional deficiencies, skin and coat disorders, and obesity. Nutritional requirements for dogs and cats vary depending on a variety of factors, including age, breed, and health. For instance, senior pets have far different requirements than puppies or kittens, and animals with diabetes, kidney disease, and other health conditions can benefit from special diets.
We can help you make informed decisions about your pet’s diet and, if requested, can counsel you on which foods are the best choices based on your pet’s needs and your financial considerations, how much to feed, and even how to read and decode pet food labels. We can create a nutrition plan specifically for your pet, and we’re also happy to work with owners to help their overweight pets get down to a healthy weight.
Call us at605-582-8575to set up a personalized nutrition consultation for you and your pet.
Our fully-stocked pharmacy offers a wide range of medications from over-the-counter to prescription drugs to flea and tick prevention, heartworm prevention, and dewormers. We also have a variety of prescription diet food and treats, supplements and oral care products for both dogs and cats.
When you purchase medications from our pharmacy, you can be certain your pet’s medications were obtained from safe, reliable sources and stored under optimal conditions. You can also count on us to provide accurate info about your pet’s medications, including proper dosing instructions.
Dr. Myers and her staff are a trusted resource for choosing the right heartworm and flea and tick products for your pet. Feel free to ask us any questions about this. We are here if you experience any problems with your medications after you return home.
Did you know one in three pets will get lost during their lifetime? Many lost animals are found without their collars and tags. Brandon Valley Vet Clinic offers microchip identification to keep track of your pet. Lost pets that are brought into a shelter are scanned for a microchip and be reunited with their owners with the information provided.
How does it work?
A small microchip, about the size of a grain of rice, is implanted underneath your pet’s skin. Usually, the microchip is placed between the shoulder blades. The procedure is similar to that of administering a vaccine and is simple and fairly benign. The pet’s owner must then enter Information regarding their pet (name, address, birth date, etc.) into a national database. Should your pet become lost, a veterinary hospital or animal shelter can use a specially designed scanner to read the information on the microchip and help your pet get home.
There is a one-time fee to set up the microchip identification, and no annual registration fee is charged.
For more information about microchipping, please call us at605-582-8575.
When it’s time to help your pet make the final transition, we will do all we can to make the final moments as peaceful and full of love as we can. We perform euthanasia in our office. We understand that this can be a difficult decision to make. You may have a lot of questions, and we'll take the time to answer them. We will also give you time to say goodbye to your companion.
When you are ready, we administer the euthanasia solution which makes your pet’s passing quick and painless. If you wish, you may remain with your pet throughout the procedure. We will also give you private time with your pet afterward. If you cannot stay for this final procedure, know that your pet will not be alone. One of us will stay with your pet until he or she has passed.
At Home Euthanasia
When requested, we can come to your home so that you and your pet can be in a comfortable and familiar setting when you say goodbye. Dr. Myers will do everything possible so it’s a low-stress, comforting environment. When you are ready to proceed, you can be wherever you are most comfortable during your pet’s final moments. After, we can help to arrange your pet’s burial place.
Options for final arrangements
You have several options once your pet has passed. Whenever possible, it’s best to discuss final arrangements for your pet in advance. This will let you make the best decision for your situation without pressure. No matter what you decide for your pet’s burial, we can assist you with the arrangements.
There are several options for your pet’s final arrangements:
Burial:You may choose to bury your pet at home. We suggest that you check with your local municipality for details and restrictions.
Private cremation:With this service, your pet will be cremated individually, and you will receive the cremains. We use and recommend crematories that have been in business for a number of years and have always treated our clients and their deceased pets with respect.
Group cremation:With this service, your pet will be cremated, and his/her cremains will be buried with those of other pets .. Most crematories also offer burial options.
Burial at a pet cemetery.
The team at Brandon Valley Veterinary Clinic is experienced in the diagnosis and treatment of skin, coat, ear and nail problems including allergic skin disease, autoimmune/immune-mediated skin disorders, infectious and parasitic skin diseases, genetic skin and coat diseases, and acute and chronic ear diseases.
Environmental factors such as pollen, dust and mold are harder to eliminate, but limiting known allergy triggers is the best way to prevent allergic problems.
Allergy testing is available at our office.
If you have questions about your pet’s allergies, or would like to schedule an allergy test, call our office at 605-582-8575.
Grooming is an essential part of your dog or cat’s health and happiness. Grooming helps your pet stay in great health, keeping them feeling good, looking sharp and smelling fresh!
Here are some ways grooming can benefit your furry friend:
Get shedding under control. Shedding is messy and frustrating but can easily be handled with regular grooming visits.
By having your pet groomed you can keep your pet’s skin and hair/coat healthier and in some cases, help prevent medical conditions.
Keeps your pet looking great! Animals feel better and look better when they are properly groomed. Avoid tangled, matted hair with regular grooming.
At Brandon Valley Veterinary Clinic, we offer a variety of pet grooming services, including:
Baths:Our pet bathing service comes with anal gland expression, nail trimming, and ear cleaning. We blow dry your pet’s hair so they feel dry and comfortable before heading home, and also brush their hair.
Nail Trimming:When your pet’s nails get too long, they can curl and cause joint pain in their paws. Nail clipping is part of every grooming visit. Keeping your dog’s toenails trimmed can help prevent broken and infected toenails and arthritis in the toes. It also makes it easier for them to walk.
Cuts:When your dog or cat is in need of a trim, we can take care of it. This service will help your pet feel lighter and cooler, keep fur out of their eyes and improve their appearance.
Anal gland expression:Anal sacs, or anal glands, carry some smelly fluid and occasionally need to be expressed, or emptied. Many dogs express them by themselves every time they poop but sometimes the sacs fill with fluid and your dog needs help to release the fluid.
You may not have the time to thoroughly groom your pet. Schedule an appointment with Brandon Valley Vet Clinic at605-582-8575.