Thursday, September 22, 2022
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Visiting Vet

Visiting Vet: Euthanasia is not the hardest part of the job

“This must be the hardest part of your job.” That’s what people always say when we are about to euthanize an animal. My reply is almost always the same: “No. It’s not.” And in...

Visiting Vet: It showed up in the eyes first

Harmonia, a 60-pound middle-aged dog, has had her share of mishaps and ailments over the years, but over all has been a happy, healthy dog. Then this spring, she developed a bad case of...

Visiting Vet: Feline asthma

Prince Hal is a handsome middle-aged long-haired cat. Other than recurrent bouts of urinary tract issues in his youth, Hal has not had much occasion to visit me. We recommend annual physical exams, but...

Visiting Vet: Behavior questions

“Oh, by the way,” the owner said as she was leaving with her cat at the end of their 20-minute annual appointment for physical exam and vaccinations. “Cheshire has been urinating outside her box...

Visiting Vet: An outside cat brings home the bunny

Sylvester is a handsome adult cat who lives in a rural, wooded area of West Tisbury. Like many country cats, Sly goes outside and roams around, and, like many country cats, enjoys exhibiting his...

Visiting Vet: Taking the hunt to your indoor cat

When I was a child, my family had cats. There were Puss, Eloise, Gorilla, and Stinky. There were Pywacket, Farfel, and Nobody, and others whose names elude me at the moment. We lived on...

Visiting Vet: The cat and the carrier

It’s one of life’s little mysteries — the fact that cats love to explore, investigating every tiny hidey-hole they can find, crawling inside paper bags, sleeping in cardboard boxes, but try to put a...

Visiting Vet: Fear-biting and ways to address it

Merlot is a scrappy little dog, born feral on a tropical island. The papers that came with him from the Caribbean animal shelter say “Location Found — Under Shed.” A difficult beginning. But his...

Visiting Vet: Feline chin acne

Minato and Umaki are two sweet but sometimes shy siblings. Born feral, this brother and sister pair were taken in as kittens by a rescue organization, and eventually placed together in a wonderful home...

Visiting Vet: Urinary stones

Early one morning, Balboa, a 5-year-old male shih tzu, was let outside to powder his nose. OK, dogs don’t powder their noses. Even people don’t really powder their noses anymore, but it seemed indelicate...

Visiting Vet: Was it GME?

The first episode happened when Tidbit was 2 years old. In the middle of the night, the young Labrador retriever was jumping off an armchair where she had been sleeping, when she abruptly fell...

Visiting Vet: It wasn’t an easy birth

All I remember is she was a very big dog. A Great Pyrenees or Saint Bernard. It was back in the day when we almost never referred patients to specialists, and when I still...

Visiting Vet: When chocolate isn’t sweet

It all started with a small tropical tree indigenous to South and Central America, Theobroma cacao. This tree grows big red fruit pods. Inside the pods are seeds, also called beans. For more than...

Visiting Vet: Cats and dogs

Sprinkles is a sweet, petite, 8-month-old cat who shares her home with her sister Sprocket, and her “cousin” Pippa, a 6-month-old Labrador retriever. Despite the stereotype of “fighting like cats and dogs,” there are...

Visiting Vet: Senior animals

It’s one o’clock in the morning. I can’t get comfortable. I have bursitis in my hip, and it hurts. I toss and turn. If I fall asleep, I will almost certainly wake up again...

Visiting Vet: Connections

“Do you carry electric blankets?” the voice asked when I answered the office phone. For a moment I was confused. Veterinarians use a variety of warming devices for our patients. In the old days,...

Visiting Vet: Happy holidays

Deck the Halls (Please sing out loud to your pets for full effect . . . with apologies to Scottish musician Thomas Oliphant, 1862, who wrote the original English lyrics.)  Deck the halls with boughs of...

Visiting Vet: Help is here

Two o’clock in the morning. The telephone rings. A dog vomiting repeatedly. Sunday afternoon. The telephone rings. A limping cat. Halfway through dinner. The telephone rings. A horse colicking. In the shower after work....

Visiting Vet: Bones are not humerus

Three families. Four dogs. A whole lot of short rib bones. The first people were not regular clients, but referred to me as “the vet on call.” I think on a Saturday afternoon. The...

Visiting Vet: Greylock’s case

When Greylock arrived for his appointment, his owner and I spent some time chatting on the porch. The handsome grey middle-aged cat had originally been a stray. “He was almost feral but crying for...