Nov 062011

Deb Tabor heads up our grooming department.  She brings over 15 years of grooming and animal care experience to our staff.  You can restgrooming_vet_dog assured that not only will your dog look fabulous when she is done, but she will be carefully checked over by an experienced professional.

We offer a variety of grooming options.  Our full service groom is our most popular package.  Deb will start with shampooing two times followed by a crème rinse.  After the bath, your dog will be blown dry and brushed out.  This is particularly helpful to get the undercoat out which will really help with any shedding at home.  After the bath and blow dry, Deb will carefully finish the groom to your specifications with special attention to the face and pads of the feet.  Also included in our full service groom:  nail trim, ears cleaned, and anal glands expressed.  This is truly head-to-tail service!

If you are in between grooms, we also offer a bath and brush package.  This includes all of the above except the grooming of the coat. This is a nice way to freshen up your dog and make the full groom look nicer a bit longer.

You may drop off and pick up your dog at your convenience during our regular business hours.  If you have any updates or need to see one of our doctors, we are happy to coordinate that to save you time and trips to our office.

Grooming is available by appointment only.  Please call 232-5292 and we will connect you with Deb.

Check out some of Deb’s work in the before and after pictures below.

dog_grooming_vet         dog_vet_grooming














Oct 282011

In House Diagnostic Equipment

Whether we are doing routine testing or are looking for answers as to why your pet is sick, you will have accurate results delivered quickly.   From blood and urine testing to digital x-rays and ultrasound, we have an impressive array of equipment to satisfy all your pet’s health care needs.  Getting answers accurately and efficiently means your pet can always be his healthiest.

  • Laboratory:  You will not wait long for results on your pet’s blood work, urine and fecal tests, dermatology testing, and heartworm results just to name a few.  Having our own equipment is an important benefit for you and your pet.  We have a few handouts to help you understand your pet’s blood and urine results:  Understanding Your Pet’s Blood Work and Understanding Urine Testing.  As always, if you have questions, please ask.
  • Digital X-Ray:  State of the art technology allows us to find out what is going on inside your pet within a matter of seconds.  Three seconds to be exact.  We will show you the x-ray images afterwards and explain what we are seeing.  Answers are often minutes away at Den Herder Veterinary Hospital.
  • Electrocardiogram (EKG):  As part of your pet’s yearly physical, we perform an EKG to see how his heart is functioning. Finding irregularities early on is crucial to intervention. We have a wide array of prescription medications that can be effective in treating heart disease in cats and dogs.  These help manage symptoms and prevent further issues down the road.
  • Ultrasound:  Ultrasound aids us in examining and making a diagnosis of your pet’s liver, spleen, kidneys, urinary bladder, gall bladder, intestines, adrenal glands, pancreas, and abdominal lymph nodes.
  • Video Endoscope:  Our video endoscope provides us the ability to magnify images of your pet’s ears, nose, or throat.  We can display these images on a monitor so you can see exactly what we are seeing. If you’ve never seen inside your dog’s ears before…it might surprise you!  It also provides us the ability to retrieve foreign bodies or obtain biopsies from the ears and nose.

Oct 282011

Caring for your pet’s teeth

Would you go for years without brushing your teeth or having them professionally cleaned? We didn’t think so!  Your dog or cat is no different.  While they may not be able to tell you their mouth is in trouble, your pet can experience significant health problems from poor oral health.  We encourage you to learn how you can care for your pet’s teeth at home to prevent issues down the road. Tooth Brushing 101 handout will offer you some tips and our video can show you how easy it is.  When the time comes for a professional cleaning, we are happy to help.

We recommend a professional cleaning for most pets depending on their age and overall health status.  Because we put your pet under general anesthesia for the cleaning, we take the same safety precautions as we do with a surgery.  We make sure every risk has been minimized when working with your family pet.  After your pet is sedated, a thorough dental examination is performed.  Teeth are cleaned and polished and a sealant is applied to help prevent plaque build-up.  Your pet will wake up in our surgical ward and is monitored carefully.  When your pet is fully awake, you can take him or her home that same day, usually later in the afternoon.  Because the mouth contains quite a bit of bacteria, we do send you home with a dental antibiotic as a precaution against infection.  Pain medication can also be prescribed if the cleaning was extensive or if any teeth were pulled.   We do recommend you soften your pet’s food for a few feedings just to give him a little pampering.

Oct 282011

We are fortunate to have an expert on exotic animal care right here on our staff.  Dr. Lori Cherney interned at the Raptor Ready for a wing trimCenter at the University of Minnesota and in New York with Dr. Altman, one of the nation’s leading avian experts. She also studied at the Henry Doorley Zoo in Omaha, and has taken plenty of courses and continuing education credits to build her expertise in exotic medicine.  She currently is the volunteer veterinarian for the Black Hawk Wildlife Rehabilitation Group and is also a licensed rehabber herself.

When we say Dr. Cherney knows her stuff, here are some of the patients she routinely sees: all types of birds, ferrets, rabbits, chinchillas, rats, mice, gerbils, guinea pigs, hamsters, raccoons, snakes, a host of lizards (e.g., chameleons, bearded dragons, iguanas), turtles, frogs, even hedgehogs! Now you can see why we are thrilled to have her at Den Herder’s (and she is a pretty nice person, too)! She delivers expert knowledge, handy how-to tips and is a solid resource for all your exotic pet needs.

If you do have questions on your exotic pet, we ask that you make an appointment to meet with Dr. Cherney.  She, as well as our staff, are not able to give advice out over the phone without having an established doctor-patient relationship with you.  Most appointments are 30 minutes in length and we can give you an estimate for a treatment plan should you wish.

Oct 212011

Did you know your pet can tolerate up to 100 times more pain than a human can before acting sick? This means we want to find out what could be wrong prior to your pet showing symptoms. At Den Herder Veterinary Hospital, we have effective ways to detect signs of illness early on so we can treat your pet before it becomes something more serious. Preventing problems is easier, more cost effective and simply a better choice for you and your pet.

We recommend twice yearly wellness exams, appropriate vaccinations tailored to your pet’s lifestyle, monthly heartworm and parasite prevention, wellness blood and urine testing for age appropriate patients, as well as specific care for senior patients.  Check out our breed specific informational handouts for several of our more popular canine breeds.  If your dog’s breed is not listed, we have a comprehensive outline of what we recommend for our canine companions across the lifespan (Caring for your dog over the lifespan).  For our feline friends, click here to learn more about what we recommend for your care (Caring for your cat over the lifespan).

We offer a wide-range of preventive services:

The Wellness Exam:  Are those ears clean? Are his tonsils swollen?  Is the abdomen tender? And everyone’s favorite, let’s empty those anal glands! A head-to-tail physical provides the doctor with a wealth of information about your pet.

Behavioral consultation: The bond you have with your pet is priceless.  From time to time our furry friends can be furry enemies.  If you are having difficulties getting along, let us help clear the air and get you back on the same page.

New puppy or kitten:  What could be cuter than a little wriggling ball of fur you can hold in your hand? The only thing better is knowing what to do and how to care for your newest member of the family.  Our staff is happy to answer any questions you have on this energetic stage of the lifespan.  Click here for our popular Positive Reinforcement Program for Dogs (Hand Feeding)  and Housebreaking Handbook .

Vaccinations:  Why risk your pet contracting a preventable disease?  We use some of the safest and best tested vaccinations on the market.  We have very few reactions to these vaccines and will always take your pet’s health into consideration before giving any vaccination.

Heartworm, Flea, Tick and other parasite prevention: For our canine companions, we recommend monthly heartworm medication year round.  Yes, we realize we live in Iowa and there are no mosquitos in the dead of winter, but the heartworm pill you give each month also contains a deworming agent.  This protects against a variety of parasites that your pet can get year round (even if those little “treats” in the yard are frozen, the eggs from parasites can still be alive!)  Click here for a good website on parasites and prevention.  We also have a short brochure to help give you a better idea of what we are talking about:  Internal Parasites and your Pet Brochure.

Diet and Nutrition:  What you feed your pet matters.  You wouldn’t eat a steady diet of high fat, high sugar, poor quality foods and neither should your pet.  We work with you to recommend a diet best tailored to your pet’s needs throughout the lifestage.  There is a lot of controversy out there on what food is best, let us help you sort through the confusion.

Oct 212011

Before Surgery

We have food and water restrictions for your pet before surgery.   Do not give your pet any food after 6 p.m. the night before surgery and no water after 10 p.m.  Give nothing
the morning of and please bring your pet to us by 7:30 a.m. the day of surgery.  At that time you will meet with one of our certified veterinary technicians who will go over the events of the day and answer any questions you may have. From there we will run a pre-surgical blood panel, perform a head-to-tail physical and an EKG.  These steps let us know she is healthy enough inside and out to undergo surgery.   When she has the medical “all clear”, we will then sedate her.  Once sedated, the next phase of surgery starts in our sterile surgical suite.

During Surgery

The doctors prepare for surgery much like you would see in the human field in terms of scrubbing their hands/arms, using sterile gowns, gloves, masks, caps and equipment each time.  The area for incision is shaved and thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.  We use sterile drape and sterile instruments from an autoclave for each surgery.

Your pet is connected to electronic monitoring for heart rate, breathing, oxygen levels and temperature the entire time she is under anesthesia.  Our doctors are assisted by a certified veterinary technician who is able to be a second set of eyes, ears and hands for the doctor.  One of their jobs is to monitor your pet during the entire procedure.

One of the safest things we use on your pet is the anesthetic, Sevoflurane.  Sevo is also used in the human field for surgeries.  In fact, when one of our staff member’s son had open heart surgery at 2 years of age, his doctors used Sevofluorane.   The reason we use this for your pet is the quick recovery time when the gas is turned off.   In the unusual event there is a problem, we can stop the procedure keeping your pet safe.

After Surgery

After we are done, your pet is kept warm with blankets or placed in our incubator for post-op recovery.  We have a separate area of the hospital for recovering surgical patients. It is quiet other than a radio softly playing music.  Your pet will be checked on frequently by the doctor and the technician.  Depending on the procedure, we may have your pet stay overnight.  When you pick up your pet, our staff will cover any at home care instructions including any medications sent home.  We often send home an antibiotic as a precaution against infection and pain medication depending on the procedure.  Approximately 10-14 days after the surgery, you can return to have the stitches removed.

Oct 212011

At Den Herder Veterinary Hospital we pride ourselves in the safest surgical protocol in the Cedar Valley.  We go to great lengths to ensure every precaution is taken before, during and after your pet is in surgery.   We know it can be an uneasy feeling leaving your pet for surgery, but you can be confident she is in excellent hands with us.  Click here to learn what to expect when your pet has surgery.

We do planned surgical procedures every morning except Thursday and Saturday (emergencies are handled immediately regardless of day or time).  Here is a sample of the types of surgeries we are performing.

1. Routine:  spay, neuter, declaw, dewclaw removal

2. Ortho: Fracture Surgery (Bone Plating, Pinning and Wiring), Joint Surgery for Ruptured ACL, Corrective Surgery for Hip Dysplasia, Treatment and Surgery for Lameness

3. General: Surgery of the Liver, Spleen, Pancreas, GI Tract and Bladder

4. Specialty: Cancer and Tumor Surgery, Reconstructive Surgery, Trauma Surgery (physical injuries of all kinds)

Oct 172011

Sometimes our modern life interferes with nature’s wild inhabitants.  If you find an injured animal, instructions for what to do are below.  While we want to help, we ask that you contact the Wildlife group, not our office, for the fastest response.  We are not able to pick up injured animals on your behalf.  We thank you for your concern for all of God’s creatures big and small.

What to do if you find an injured/orphaned animal:

  1. Keep the animal in a dark, quiet place and DO NOT feed or water the animal.
  2. Call the Black Hawk Wildlife Rehabilitation Project Hotline at 319-277-6511. Leave a message on this line and a licensed rehabber will contact you.
  3. Do not attempt to care for the animal. It is Illegal to house a wild animal without a license.
  4. If it is a baby bird put it back in the nest, if possible. The mother WILL come back for it, even if you have touched it.

Black Hawk Wildlife Rehabilitation Project