Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Protecting your dog with this important simple test - 4DX

Each year we tout the importance of checking your dog for Heartworm and preventing this deadly disease through Heartworm preventatives monthly.   This year at Warren Woods Veterinary Hospital we have already diagnosed two dogs with Heartworm disease so we know that the disease is present in our area.  In order to do the best for our patients, we have added a new test called 4DX to our Heartworm prevention arsenal.

Our diagnostic laboratory, Idexx offers the 4DX test that not only checks for Heartworm disease, but also for three other tick borne diseases, and it can be done with the same tiny blood sample that your dog gives us for the routine Heartworm test.  The four diseases that it tests for are:
  1. Heartworm
  2. Ehrlichiosis
  3. Lyme 
  4. Anaplasmosis
Heartworm disease is caused by the parasitic worm Dirofilaria immitis. These parasites are transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito and grow in the heart of infected dogs.  These worms can cause permanent damage to dogs' heart and lungs. 
Lyme disease, Ehrlichiosis, and Anaplasmosis are known as tick-borne diseases because they are transmitted when ticks bite and feed on pets. Because ticks can carry more than one of these diseases, infection with these diseases can occur at the same time in the same dog.  Signs can include fever, lethargy, and lameness. Research has shown that if a dog is infected with more than one of these tick-borne diseases at the same time, the likelihood of developing clinical signs is increased.
A vaccine is available to aid in preventing Lyme disease, but there are currently no vaccines to protect dogs from ehrlichiosis or anaplasmosis. Appropriate tick control methods combined with periodic testing may be the best ways to help protect dogs from these tick-borne infections.

If you have any questions about the 4DX test, or anything else concerning your pets, please call the Warren Woods Veterinary Hospital team at 586-751-3350. Have a great summer and don't forget to give your dog it's heartworm and flea/tick preventatives. 

Friday, May 13, 2016

The Happiest Place on Earth!

I have spent the last three days in the most amazing, uplifting place in the world.  You might say, the happiest place on earth; Orlando, the home of Disney and all the wonders that the Disney parks magic brings.  But,  I did not visit one of the Disney parks and I still feel a jolt of child like optimism about life and work.   I am not in Orlando to experience Disney,  I am here to experience a unique conference called "Work Human".

 When I signed on,  I really didn't know what Work Human was all about.  I learned of this conference from a friend of mine at the Michigan Veterinary Medical Association and I thought it sounded interesting and different from my usual veterinary conference.  This conference is put on by a company called Globoforce and the goals of the conference are centered around making all of our workplaces more "human".  Whether you work in an office, home or school, the space that we occupy for our work needs to be more meaningful and soul nourishing.

I heard from speakers like Shawn Achor, the author of, "The Happiness Advantage" in which he proves statistically that increased happiness directly correlates to productivity and profit in the workplace.  Amy Cuddy, author of the book, "Presence", who shows that we are happier and more productive in life if we live in the moment and embrace our power.  She does research on Power posing and how it leads to higher achievement in the boardroom and the classroom.

Finally this morning we heard from actor, Michael J. Fox, who at the young age of 29 was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease and has continued his career as a successful actor and founded on of the most successful foundations in the world working on diagnosing and treating Parkinson's disease.  He spoke about how you cannot always control your circumstances, but you can control your attitude towards them and use the space you are given to create something good and continue to live life to your fullest potential.  To see someone that has little control of their body, retain so much control of their mind and optimism is remarkable.

The lesson that I have learned from hearing all these amazing speakers, is that our capacity for resilience and optimism lies far beyond our imagination.   It is only limited by our own pessimism.

Check out the books written by these amazing people and have a blessed an optimistic day.