Lyme Disease Vaccination for Dogs | Get Answers Now

Lyme Disease Vaccination for Dogs | Get Answers Now

Vaccinate Your Dog for Lyme Disease or Not? What is the answer?

Tick on a Dog at Oak Tree Animal Hospital in Tampa FLThe argument continues whether to immunize or not immunize for Lyme disease. If vets can not concur, exactly how does a client decide. Anytime a veterinarian chooses to utilize a vaccine, Lyme disease or other, the veterinarian needs to weigh the risks and advantages for the client. So what are some of the aspects to consider.

Where does your pet live?

Living in an endemic location for Lyme disease should be considered. In human beings, 95 % of Lyme disease cases are found in 12 endemic states in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and Upper Midwest. In some of these areas, 70 % to 90 % of the healthy pets have been exposed to Lyme disease. An important component for avoidance in the locations is good tick control, which can reduce the danger for illness. Vaccination must be thought about more often in an endemic location.

Exactly how fantastic is the threat of severe condition, once a pet dog is contaminated?

Usually, the danger of serious condition, as soon as the dog is contaminated, is low. It has actually been stated that less than 2 % of exposed canines establish the more severe ailment, Lyme nephritis (kidney swelling). Co-infection (infection with more than one representative) appears to result in even more severe illness. There likewise could be a hereditary predisposition to the degree of inflammation produced from the condition. Retrievers and soft-coated wheaten terriers appear to a hereditary susceptibility. In researches, less than 5 % of favorable pets had arthritis, the most typical disease. These cases typically react quickly to common and affordable prescription antibiotics.

How efficient is the vaccine?

Certainly not as reliable as other vaccines. The vaccine appears to prevent infection in 60 % -86 % of the canines immunized. Protection is not long enduring and enhancer vaccinations are provided every 6 months or at least every year.

Is the vaccine safe?

The vaccine does not appear to be as safe as the more common vaccines used today for other conditions. In a 1.2 million study of immunized canines, the Lyme vaccine produced more after vaccination adverse responses within 3 days, than any other vaccine. These responses were judged as moderate. The responses were related to swelling. In a research study, 30 % of the pet dogs with Lyme nephritis had actually been provided the Lyme vaccine 2 weeks to 15 months prior to health problem. This also brings up the question whether or not to immunize retrievers and soft-coated wheaten terriers. They most likely SHOULD NOT be immunized.


1. Tick control is important is assisting to prevent the disease.
2. Most pets tested favorable for Lyme disease are nonclinical.
3. Vast bulk of validated cases can be treated with common and low-cost prescription antibiotics.
4. A lot of pets do not display signs of Lyme disease after vaccination, but the same is true for normally exposed pet dogs.
5. Lyme disease vaccine have a brief period and trigger even more post vaccination negative events.
6. The pet dogs most prone to Lyme disease (genetic predisposition), which require the most security, should not be immunized.
Hopefully this offers some helpful info in making a decision to vaccinate for Lyme disease or not.

Oak Tree Animal Hospital
7201 Armenia Avenue North
Tampa FL 33604

A veterinary animal hospital located in Hillsborough County providing veterinary medical
and surgical care in Northwest Tampa and surrounding areas.

Need veterinary care for your dog or cat? We are an affordable animal hospital in Tampa FL.

Call us for an appointment and let us help you with your best friend and companion.

Seasonal Pet Toxins to Avoid

Seasonal Pet Toxins to Avoid

The holiday season is a time of year when people decorate their homes of Christmas trees and have busy holiday plans. It is a time for cooking and baking desserts many of which include chocolate.

Ingestion of seasonal plants

We know that there are a lot of concerns around the holidays, especially certain potential intoxications such as chocolate and the ingestion of those seasonal plants. The three common plants that one finds around the holidays are poinsettias, holly and mistletoe.

Fortunately, none of these plants are particularly dangerous except that they can cause significant gastro-intestinal upset which would include vomiting and diarrhea. If a pet consumes one of these plants you should call your veterinarian right away and talk to them about it.

Ingestion of chocolate

A lot of people know that chocolate is potentially toxic to dogs but what we need to recognize is that there are different kinds of chocolate. The two toxic components in chocolate are caffeine and theobromine. It is the theobromine in chocolate which causes most of the symptoms in a pet. Theobromine affects the pet’s intestinal system, nervous system (brain), cardiovascular system and the kidneys. The main one that could be lethal produces cardiac arrhythmias, which causes the heart not to beat the way that it normally should.

Milk chocolate is one that could potentially be toxic but is usually a threat to small dogs. However, baker’s chocolate actually has ten times the amount of the toxin, theobromine, than milk chocolate. The risk of a true toxicity is much higher with baker’s chocolate then with milk chocolate.

How much is this too much? Veterinarians get a lot of questions of people calling about a pet getting into a Hershey’s bar or kisses. Now, it really depends on two things. First, one must consider the size of the pet. For example, a big dog is going to be much less likely to be intoxicated than a very small dog.

The second factor is how much and what kind of chocolate was consumed. If your pet gets into chocolate products, it is really important to find out how much theobromine that product contains.

“Let’s look at how much theobromine is in certain types of chocolate, and then we can best know if you need to be concerned about chocolate poisoning in your pet. A 5oz milk chocolate bar contains 250mg of theobromine, a dark chocolate bar contains 600 mg. Unsweetened baking chocolate contains 400mg theobromine per square, Semisweet chocolate chips (30 chips), 250mg. Dry cocoa powder contains 700 mg of theobromine per ounce.

The toxic and potentially fatal dose of chocolate is 60mg/kg- so a 10lb dog only needs to consume 300mg of chocolate. Clinical Signs can be seen as low as 20mg/kg- meaning a small 10lb dog only needs to consume 100mg to have problems. Severe signs are seen at 40mg/kg- or consuming 200mg of chocolate.

A poodle weighing 10lbs can be fatally poisoned by as little as one milk chocolate bar containing 250mg of theobromine. A 75lb larger breed dog, such as a Golden Retriever, would need to eat to eat 8 milk chocolate bars to become seriously ill. On the other hand, the dark chocolate and baker’s chocolate are far more toxic; the 75lb Golden only needs to consume 3 of the dark chocolate bars to be fatally poisoned.”

One can either look on the of the label of the rapper of the product. Many companies, such as the Hershey’s company, have a website you can go to and provides useful information about how much of theobromine is in that particular product.

Also, another option would be calling the National Animal Poison Control Center. If you just go to their website there are some very useful articles on different types of products and potential hazards within the home that you might want to be aware of.

Got a Pet Poison Emergency? Call (888) 426-4435

One thing, you can always call your regular veterinarian and ask for his or her advice on what to do.

Ingestion of macadamia nuts

A lot of people aren’t aware of the fact that macadamia nuts are potentially toxic.

We don’t know what the poisonous agent is but animals consuming macadamia nuts can actually have depression, hallucinations and hind limb weakness.

Macadamia Nuts

Although macadamia nut toxicosis is unlikely to be fatal in dogs, it can cause very uncomfortable symptoms that may persist for up to 48 hours. Affected dogs develop weakness in their rear legs, appear to be in pain, may have tremors and may develop a low grade fever. Fortunately, these signs will gradually subside over 48 hours, but dogs experiencing more than mild symptoms can benefit from veterinary care, which may include intravenous fluid therapy and pain control.”

What to do if you think your pet ingested something poisonous

It’s really important, if you think your dog or your cat has gotten into something that’s potentially toxic, to call your vet and follow their directions. It is best to get your dog or cat to them, so they can evaluate your pet and start treatment, if necessary.

The first thing that your veterinary hospital is going to ask you is… what is the particular compound, product or food that your pet ingested? Next, they’re going to ask how much do you think your pet consumed and third, they’re going to ask, how long has it been since your pet consumed the particular product, substance or food.

What are some other potential recommendations that your veterinarian is likely to make, if your pet has gotten into omething that’s potentially poisonous?

One, they may recommend that you induce vomiting with hydrogen peroxide. Please never do this unless you’ve consulted with your veterinarian first.

Second, they may ask that you bring your pet immediately into the animal hospital for examination, possible laboratory tests and supportive care, such as fluids and administer products to help reduce the absorption of the toxin. Also, they may try to reduce the amount of the ingested substance by nducing vomiting, if that has not been done.

There are numerous potential toxic sources during this time of the year, but the ingestion of chocolate products is still the most common problem encountered by veterinarians during the holidays.


Oak Tree Animal Hospital
7201 Armenia Avenue North
Tampa FL 33604

A veterinary animal hospital located in Hillsborough County providing veterinary medical
and surgical care in Northwest Tampa and surrounding areas.

Need veterinary care for your dog or cat? We are an affordable animal hospital in Tampa FL.

Call us for an appointment and let us help you with your best friend and companion.

Stop! Poisonous Pet Foods | Foods You Should Not Feed Your Pets

Stop! Poisonous Pet Foods | Foods You Should Not Feed Your Pets

Food that we eat does not necessarily translate into food that can be eaten by our pets. Some foods are health hazards to our pets despite them being very safe and healthy for humans. Pet owners must refrain from feeding their pets every thing that humans eat with the assumption that since they themselves can eat it then it follows that their pet can eat it. This may be a difficult undertaking because 1) Pets are excellent beggars – all they have to do is look at you with those begging drooling eyes and 2) it may be difficult to know which foods are poisonous!

Not all that is healthy food to humans is healthy to pets. Take for example Onions, Garlic and Chives! These are healthy vegetables that every human being on earth should eat. But did you know that they can cause gastrointestinal irritation and could lead to red blood cell damage in our pets, especially in dogs and pets. These foods are potentially dangerous when taken in large amounts! Another example is avocado.

“Avocado – The leaves, fruit, seeds and bark of avocados contain Persin, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea in dogs. Birds and rodents are especially sensitive to avocado poisoning, and can develop congestion, difficulty breathing and fluid accumulation around the heart. Some ingestions may even be fatal.”

Grapes and raisins are delicious and healthy to humans but are toxic foods to pets.

“Grapes & Raisins – Although the toxic substance within grapes and raisins is unknown, these fruits can cause kidney failure. In pets who already have certain health problems, signs may be more dramatic.”

It is very easy to give your pet fruit like peach, pear or plum, however the pit of these fruits contains cyanogenic glycosides which can cause cyanide poisoning.

The following is a list og some of poisonous foods to your pet that you feed your feed without knowing. The list is from a Humane Society:

Alcoholic beverages
Apple seeds
Apricot pits
Cherry pits
Candy (particularly chocolate—which is toxic to dogs, cats, and ferrets—and any candy containing the toxic sweetener Xylitol)
Coffee (grounds, beans, and chocolate-covered espresso beans)
Gum (can cause blockages and sugar free gums may contain the toxic sweetener Xylitol)
Hops (used in home beer brewing)
Macadamia nuts
Moldy foods
Mushroom plants
Mustard seeds
Onions and onion powder
Peach pits
Potato leaves and stems (green parts)
Rhubarb leaves
Tea (because it contains caffeine)
Tomato leaves and stems (green parts)
Xylitol (artificial sweetener that is toxic to pets)
Yeast dough

Your pet’s life and health are important and if you think your pet has ingested any food or anything that is dangerous to it contact your veterinarian and call the Animal Poison Control Center (ASPCA) at (888) 426-4435.

We also advice that you download and print “Toxic Food Guide for Pets – What Not to Feed Dogs and Cats” document. This can be used as a reference and guide to the type of food you should avoid giving your pets.

Don’t Smoke Cigarettes Around Your Pets | Dangers and Harm

Don’t Smoke Cigarettes Around Your Pets | Dangers and Harm

Just as in people, second hand cigarette smoking can be extremely dangerous to your pets. If you are a cigarette smoker, you may be unknowingly increasing the risk of some serious health concerns influencing your animals. Because it would take you a longer time to see any issues, the unsafe impacts in animals can be even worse. By the time you observe any symptoms it might be too late.

Research has found that allergies, skin disease and respiratory issues, in cats and pets, can result from previously smoking. Besides second-hand smoke, the ingestion of nicotine, which can be dangerous in itself, can also take place from cigarette butts, replacement gum, nicotine patches and contaminated drinking water. This is actually termed third hand smoke.

“A recent study from Harvard Medical School, published in the January 2009 Journal of Pediatrics, found additional health risks associated with what they termed “third-hand smoke,” describing the invisible yet toxic brew of gases and particles clinging to smokers’ hair and clothing, cars, and carpeting that lingers long after the second-hand smoke has cleared the room.” (Dr. Karen Becker, Healthy Pets, September 17, 2009).

If you can “smell” the smoke then that is third hand smoke.

Some of the more typically effected and vulnerable pets include dogs, cats, rabbits and birds.

Damage in pet dogs:

Canines that live in a home with a cigarette smoker are more vulnerable to obtaining respiratory illness, such as allergy to tobacco smoke, as compared to those that are residing in a smoke free environment. Surprisingly, nasal illness, such as nasal cancer, is more widespread in long nosed pets than shorter or medium nosed pets. This is due to the fact that the longer nosed dogs offer more area where the carcinogens, when inhaled, can build up. Unfortunately, pet dogs that establish nasal cancer hardly ever survive for more than a year. Now on the other hand, short nosed pets, such as pugs and cats, have a greater risk of developing pneumonia from second hand smoke and lung cancer. An additional significant side effect of secondhand cigarette smoking in pet dogs is long bone cancer. Likewise you have to consider that the environment, which includes the pet’s fur, contaminated rugs, carpets, furniture, etc., can be a secondhand source, due to consumption, by licking and grooming, of the carcinogens left.

Harm in cats:

Cats, much like pet dogs, are vulnerable to secondhand smoke. Allergy and asthma are very typical in cats in these smoking households. What even makes it more of a potential problem in cats is their grooming habits. Cats continuously groom themselves by licking their fur and as a result can ingest more of the cancer causing carcinogens that accumulate on their fur. Due to this, mouth cancer such as Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC) can result. Secondhand smoke likewise correlates to malignant lymphoma occurrence. Both of these cancers types have a poor prognosis when they occur in a cat and can be really expensive if treatment is attempted.

Harm in rabbits:

Secondhand smoke likewise causes respiratory issues in rabbits plus diarrhea, throwing up, salivation and even cardiac problems. Sadly, it might be tough to see these clinical problems, which occur, in time to be treatable, thus the health of your pet might slowly deteriorate.

Harm in birds:

Pet birds are also susceptible to illness troubles from secondhand smoke. A bird’s respiratory system is really sensitive to any type of air toxin in the surroundings. Therefore, the effects in birds can even be worse than those in other animals. Due to the lack of a diaphragm, it easier for them to inhale polluted air. Some of the other threats associated with second hand smoking in birds consist of respiratory paralysis and pneumonia. Second hand smoke can also trigger feather damage and plucking in birds. If you clean a bird that lives with a smoker, the rinsing water will be brownish yellow in color and the feather will have an odor that stays until all the feathers molt.


As a result, if you are a cigarette smoker, it is best that you refrain from cigarette smoking around your pets; otherwise, you might trigger some significant illness problems. Clearly, it would be best to give up cigarette smoking not just for the smoker’s benefit; however, likewise for their pet’s health. Nonetheless, with that stated, if someone smokes and has animals, the cigarette smoker needs to decrease the exposure to their pets. This can be achieved by smoking outside or utilize a designated smoke only room and keep the pets out of the space. Also, avoid smoking cigarettes in the vehicle, particularly when pets are also traveling in the automobile.

Signs of illness from second hand smoke might be as basic as the pet just being sluggish (no energy), difficulty in breathing, coughing or noticeable masses/sores involving the mouth. If any of these happen the pet must be taken to a veterinarian for an assessment.