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Some pets keep giving even after they’re gone


Discussing the “aftercare” of a beloved pet is a delicate topic. Fortunately there are many ways to honor them once they’re gone. When a pet dies, some owners take them home for burial while others elect to have them cremated so they can keep or spread the ashes. Sometimes we’re asked to do a post mortem first to find an explanation for the pet’s illness and provide better closure for the owners.

We are also occasionally asked if donating the deceased pet for educational purposes is an option. Here in Massachusetts, the veterinary school at Tufts has a well established client donation program to which we have referred several families. In fact, the vet school at Tufts has been using client donated pets since 1988 (see http://vet.tufts.edu/dvm/animal_use.html).

It’s never easy to say goodbye, and they always seem to leave us too soon. Our pets offer us quite a lot both while they’re here and after they’ve passed. Very generous indeed 🙂

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Posted by:
raycahill

Posted on:
October 12th, 2012

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Canine flu: answers to frequently asked questions


Who: dogs can catch their own strain of the flu (H3N8) which is highly contagious and rapidly spread through aerosolized respiratory secretions; young puppies and sick or elderly dogs with other diseases tend to be hardest hit when exposed.

What: symptoms include a combination of coughing, sneezing, nasal discharge, fever and tiredness but can progress to fatal hemorrhagic pneumonia; 80-90% of exposed dogs show symptoms and 8% of dogs that develop pneumonia do not survive (smooshed nosed breeds like Pugs are particularly at risk).

When & Where: contact with other dogs or to contaminated surfaces (primarily indoors) increases the chance of exposure; travel to areas of the country where H3N8 is endemic also poses greater risk (it has already been documented in 38 states, including Massachusetts).

Why: the horse H7N7 influenza virus jumped species to create H3N8 in dogs (which was first discovered in 2004 following an outbreak of severe respiratory illness at a Greyhound racing facility in Florida in which 1/3 of the dogs died).

Moving forward: although canine influenza hasn’t yet reared it’s head here on the North Shore, a few regional boarding facilities have started requiring the H3N8 vaccine; learn more at www.doginfluenza.com.

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Posted by:
raycahill

Posted on:
March 21st, 2012

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Welcome to the new blog!


I’ll be updating here frequently with stories and other glimpses into life behind the scenes at SeaPort Vet. I encourage you to check back, leave comments and pose questions about what we’re blogging about. Please know that this isn’t a forum for diagnosing or making treatment recommendations. I’m hoping it will be a fun, educational platform to share our experiences caring for pets!

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Posted by:
raycahill

Posted on:
February 6th, 2012

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