Pet insurance, Should you or Shouldn’t you?

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The majority of our clients who have pet insurance are happy that they have it.  Depending on the type of policy as well as which company/pet insurance you choose, pet insurance can be worthwhile.  Like any type of insurance it is in place to make sure that when an emergency or something unforeseen occurs it will help cover the costs.  When an unexpected illness, accidents or emergency occurs you may be faced with hard choices due to financial considerations.  Insurance helps eliminate some of those choices.

“While you can’t predict when accidents or illnesses will happen, a pet health insurance plan will help you deal with unexpected veterinary costs, and you’ll know you’re providing the best possible protection for your pet.”  Not only will you be protecting your pet but potentially protecting yourself from making heart wrenching decisions based on finances

But like health insurance for humans, pet insurance can be complicated.  Depending on the policy that you choose, some policies will not cover older pets or genetic conditions that certain breeds are known to have, such as hip dysplasia in retrievers.  It is very important to check as well as compare various products that different companies offer to find one that will meet your needs.

Some people may be more comfortable putting aside money every month for their pet in a “Pet savings account” to cover the unexpected.  By putting money aside to pay for future work you may be covered for the unexpected veterinary care.  However you must be diligent about putting the money aside.  But what happens if the “future” turns out to be in a couple of months from when you initially started your savings plan?  That would not be so good.  For example, your puppy is playing with a red rubber ball, accidentally chews it up and swallows it.   Not good.  Or… your cat somehow swallows a needle, Yikes.  Sounds unlikely, true, but it happens more than you would think.  All are unexpected accidents.

The Steinway Court Vet recommends a few different companies based on how pleased our clients are regarding ease of reimbursement and of course the amount of that reimbursement.

Nationwide Pet insurance

Embrace Pet Insurance

http://trupanion.com/pet-insurance

http://www.petsbest.com/

http://www.akcpethealthcare.com/

http://www.gopetplan.com/

There are many others.  Please get free price quotes from these and any other company.  Compare apples to apples when you receive your free quotes.

New Puppies and what to feed them the first year

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large breed puppies

large breed puppies

Spring time is here and it seems everyone is getting a new puppy!  There are always a lot of questions regarding a new puppy but one of the most important is what to feed your puppy during the first year of its life.  If you have a large breed dog i.e. Great Dane or German Shepherd , or a small breed  Dachshund they each have  different nutritional needs, not just more food.  Too many calories for a large breed dog can put on excess weight and cause skeletal problems in overfed puppies.  If puppies are under four months of age they can eat whatever they want.  But as they age they require fewer calories per pound.  At that junction it is appropriate to limit the food intake.

Puppies that grow slower will still reach the same size as there over fed counterparts, just a bit later, and healthier.

 Too much calcium in the food is just as bad as too much.  Too much calcium can cause the bones to reshape as excess calcium is deposited on bone tissue, causing abnormalities.

Protein is important for your dog as well.  However  the needs for a large breed dog vary from the needs of a small dog.  For example, for a large breed dog  the food should contain about 26% protein. Because of these variations  It is best that you purchase food that is either breed or  size specific.

Following these guidelines are  very important, by doing this you do NOT have to provide any supplements to your puppy, but rather the food itself will provide all that is needed – Again, this will  vary depending  on the size of your pup.

Good nutrition is important  for proper development of the bones and joints.  After your dog reaches one year of age, unfortunately it is not a puppy anymore.  At this time the food will again need to be changed and transitioned to age/breed and size specific food.

Have we seen your cat lately?

Tabby kittenCats are masters at hiding illness.  If you see any subtle signs of sickness in your cat, it is time for a visit. i.e., inappropriate elimination, changes in food/water consumption, weight gain/loss, changes in grooming habits or vocalization as well as bad breath.  Please do not wait, come on in!

Cats need regular veterinary care, including wellness exams at least once a year. Cats age faster than you do, so an annual exam for them is similar to you visiting your doctor or dentist every four to five years. Prevention is always safer and less expensive than treatment, and why your cat needs to be seen at least once a year by your veterinarian.

The American Association of Feline Practitioners and America Animal Hospital Association recommends a minimum of one annual wellness exam for cats, with more frequent exams for senior and geriatric patients, or those cats with medical or behavioral conditions.

During the health risk assessment, Dr. Glasser will conduct a thorough exam of your cat. Here’s what to expect during the health risk assessment exam:

  • A review of your cat’s previous health records
  • Discuss medications your cat is currently taking, including flea prevention products
  • Note weight and age changes since the last exam
  • Ask about any lifestyle changes in your cat
  • Perform a physical exam including: teeth, mouth, eyes, ears, skin, coat, and paws
  • Ask about any unusual behavior in your cat, such as drinking more water, eating less or more, sleeping less or more,
    or a change in activity level
  • Treat any current condition, such as ear infection or ear mites
  • Recommend dental cleaning, if needed
  • Look for early disease signs and if suspected, recommend further tests
  • Recommend appropriate vaccinations your cat needs to prevent disease

Let us help you keep your cat healthy and live a long, happy life!