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Mid-Peninsula Animal Hospital Blog

Let there be light?

You'd expect us, in the heart of the Silicon Valley, to have the latest technologies. You'd also expect we don't jump on every new idea until it's been reasonably vetted (pardon the pun) by the medical scientific community. Sometimes animal research precedes human research; sometimes it's the other way around, as is the case with laser therapy.

It's only been recently that so many anecdotal veterinary reports started circulating on top of the many laser therapy studies on people -- on everything about inflammation and from treating carpel tunnel to low back pain to arthritic knees -- that we considered it. The research that most interests us, as vets, involves arthritis pain and hip dysplasia. We're also interested in healing wounds and injuries, and treating infections. We don't get a lot of carpel tunnel here. ;^)
As we received good reports from Dr. Lowery's experiences with the laser at Scout's House, and watched anecdotal reports mounting in the veterinary world, at a certain point we wanted to see for ourselves first hand. So, we brought in a K-laser Class IV laser unit in for a 30-day trial. We observed that it appeared to reduce inflammation and to accelerate the healing of chronic wounds.
The process, called photobiomodulation (read "therapeutic laser application"), modifies the oxidation/reduction status of mitochondria in the cells of the body. Remember your high school biology? Mitochondria are the powerhouses of cells. Stimulating the mitochondria appears to result in multiple types of activities which loosely translate to more energy for the cells to use intra- and inter-cellularly in repair and recovery from injury.
When used properly, laser therapy is free of side-effects and non-addictive (important for pain). It is not absolutely risk free however. Our licensed staff underwent the training needed to be confident using the K-laser safely.
So, it's official: We've recently acquired a Class IV laser therapy capability. We have the equipment; we've been properly trained on it. It's another option to offer as an adjunct to standard therapies, say after surgery, after injury, or for a wound, an infection or for inflammation. If this sounds like something you'd like to consider further, just let us know.

And The Award Goes To...


Thank you to Daily News Readers for your support of Dr. Blount, in voting for her in the 2012 Daily News People's Choice Awards. 
It's available today, if you want to see it. The paper is running a special section in today's paper, available in newsstands at just about every corner around town.
Congratulations to Dr. Blount for the well-earned honor, winning 2nd place in the category for best veterinarian in the area by a vote of Daily News readers. It's one thing to know we're proud of her, and always have been, but it's quite something when so many independent minds think alike! Congratulations!

Of Turkey, Jerky and Treats for Pets

If you tend to reward your dog with chicken jerky treats, a little common sense may be in order. Moderation, as in all things, right?

The FDA actually came out with an official warning and reminds us that "Chicken jerky products should not be substituted for a balanced diet and are intended to be fed occasionally in small quantities."  Apparently this isn't just another, "well, duh" from the FDA, since they're looking into and testing chicken jerky treats from China. And, of course, if your animal has any decreased appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, or is drinking unusually high quantities of water, we're sure you'd bring them in anyway, with or without chicken jerky treats or official FDA warnings.
However, this is a really good reminder as we head into the holidays to be mindful of any special treats that you -- or your guests -- share with your furry family members. The same chicken-bone ban applies to turkeys. Chocolate, in particular, isn't a good idea. You can also keep those rich buttery holiday cookies, desserts, etc. all for yourself. Keep their fat intake low, so resist the temptation to share your gravy, etc.  We wrote about it last year, when we warned about cats and tinsel, so you know the drill already.
We just thought it would be good to remind you -- before your guests arrive!
Most of all, have a -> Happy Thanksgiving!

Our Trip to the AKC World Championships

Dog agility has rapidly become the most popular of dog sports, with thousands of trials put on each year around the U.S. In 2010, AKC recorded a record 947,137 entries at agility trials around the country. Each year AKC picks about a dozen of the top dogs in the country to compete at the world championships.  This year the championships were held in Lievin, France. 


I was fortunate enough to accompany Scout's House and local house call veterinarian, Dr. Janet Dunn, and her very talented young Papillon, “Tantrum,” to the championships.  Dr. Dunn (J.D. to her friends) and Tantrum had tried out for their first time for the AKC world team in May and won a spot on the team. That's J.D. and Tantrum at work in the photo. The chance to represent the USA at an international event is quite an honor and we were excited about the pending adventure. 
The competition was everything we imagined and then some. The stadium seats up to 6,000 people and those seats were sold out weeks before the event. A record 36 countries competed this year and it was also the first year that China sent a team. Between the cheers, horns, music and dogs barking, we knew that we were in for a wild ride!
Three days of competition by some of the top dog and handler teams in the world followed and the US team had some amazing runs. A local dog and handler (a Redwood City resident) won the All Around Medium dog Gold Medal! And Tantrum and J.D. were amazing at their first World Championships, placing fourth in the small dog team jumping round.  
I’m sure this is just the beginning of a very long and successful agility career for these two. Next year the championships are in the Czech Republic. Sounds like the possibility for another great adventure!

Come meet Nelly and Pansy

Mid-Peninsula Animal Hospital would like to introduce two rescued Papillons we are fostering through Paphaven rescue.

Meet Nelly, a young (2-3 year old) spayed female. Nelly came with hardly a hair on her body due to severe internal and external parasites. We treated the condition successfully. Her new coat is coming in and you can really see what a beauty she is going to be. Nelly is a happy-go-lucky girl and quite often lets loose with a melodic chortle! 
Pansy is, most likely, Nelly’s daughter. We are guessing her age at somewhere around a year, and she too has been spayed. Pansy is a beautiful tri-color and she is quite the character. Her nickname could be Happy Feet because she sure loves to dance!
A little bit about the Papillon breed, although small in stature they are quite the athletes. Very quick on their feet they are becoming popular in dog sports such as agility. Papillons are often included in the top 5 most intelligent dog breeds. So if you are looking for a small companion who is game enough for a nice hike or game of ball then the Papillon is for you.  
They love visitors. Even if you're not interested in adopting, if you would like to meet and play with them, they would love to meet you! So, come by and say Hi!