Kingsbrook Animal Hospital's Blog

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Why you love KAH Contest

Your pets have told us why they love KAH. (Remember our I love KAH contest?)
This month, you will see why the KAH team love’s KAH.
Now it’s time for YOU to tell us- Why do YOU love KAH?

On March 31st, we will randomly give away a grand prize gift card for a tasting party at Oil & Vinegar in Frederick, Md! (This is a $100 value!) In order to be entered into the drawing, all you need to do is tell us in one sentence- Why YOU love KAH.

Tiffanie and the Oil and Vinegar Gift Card!
(check out Kingsbrook Animal Hospital’s holiday party to see how much fun a tasting party can be! It includes cocktails, sampling of various oils, vinegars, and appetizers, and also includes a cooking demonstration- for you and 10 of your friends!)
Other random prizes include, KAH travel mugs, KAH t-shirts, and dog and cat goodies!  
The KAH Holiday Party at Oil and Vinegar
Email or facebook message us your entry today! (make sure to include your name and best way to contact you!)

We will be announcing winners throughout the month with the grand prize being announced March 31st so message us now to enter!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Dental Care of Small Exotic Pets at KAH

We all know that our dogs and cats need proper dental care, including regular professional cleanings, but did you know that your exotic pets need dental care, too? Rabbits are known as lagomorphs, because they have four incisors on the upper jaw and a set of peg teeth, instead of two incisors, as seen in rodents. Small rodents (guinea pigs, hamsters, rats, and mice) as well as rabbits need routine dental care. The teeth in small rodents and lagomorphs are open rooted, meaning they grow continuously throughout their lives. Our small furry friends need regular chewing action in order to wear down their continuously growing teeth. The most effective way to help your exotic pet wear down their teeth is to provide a good quality timothy hay at all times.  A regular physical exam with your veterinarian at Kingsbrook Animal Hospital in Frederick, MD will include a dental examination to determine the status of your pet’s teeth.

Sometimes, however, our pets just have bad teeth. In which case, a visit to your veterinarian is recommended. Some animals do not wear their teeth down properly, leading to malocclusion, a misalignment of the teeth. Malocclusion can lead to other dental problems, including abscesses, wounds and difficulty eating. Symptoms of dental problems in your exotic friends include, but are not limited to, drooling, difficulty eating, and weight loss. Improper nutrition can also lead to poor dental health.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Introducing Dr Dannis/Acupuncture to Frederick, MD

Sugar listening to Dr Dannis' lecture

Sugar says "That didn't hurt a bit."
Did you hear that KAH is introducing Dr. Dannis who is an acupuncturist?!

     My name is Sugar, I am a healthy 3 year old American Bulldog.  My mom works at KAH as a CSR.  I overheard her talking about acupuncture & had to see what this was for myself.  So, when I heard KAH was looking for a demo dog for an acupuncture lecture, I was first to volunteer.

      I attended the acupuncture lecture that Dr. Dannis, a veterinarian, hosted last Friday with all of my friends from KAH. We learned all about acupuncture & how it works.  Basically, acupuncture is a form of triggering the nerve fibers to fire from minimal stimulus so that they don’t fire due to other causes ( can you tell I took notes ;))  It also promotes healing by encouraging the growth of the new blood vessels into areas of the chronic inflammation. This stimulation can also release opiods within your body for pain. 

Dr Dannis inserting the needles into Sugar's back
     This all sounded great but I wanted to experience this for myself. Well, after seeing another animal first of course.  So when I noticed Baby Kitty raising her paw to go first I was relieved.  I watched her get her acupuncture without a flinch. I knew needed to be brave in this moment.  Dr. Dannis called my name, I started eating cheese & the next thing I knew I had all these needles all over my body & I was feeling really relaxed.  Great job Dr. Dannis!

     What a great experience! I’m sure this will benefit other pets that need additional therapy for their treatments of arthritis, pain, and other health issues.  Great job KAH for adding a service to go above & beyond for pets as usual!

For More information my mom says that you can contact Kingsbrook Animal Hospital at 301-631-6900. They will be starting to schedule appointments in Frederick, MD for Dr. Dannis soon!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Preventative Dental Care Recommendations at KAH

Tiffanie showcasing out dental care products
   When we think of dental care, we think of brushing and flossing our teeth twice daily and visiting the dentist for a professional cleaning every 6 months.  So why do we think that our pets don't need the same care to keep their teeth pearly white?
When it comes to dental care in our pets, brushing is always best.  Plaque hardens into tartar after 48-72 hours.  Once it has hardened, the only way to remove it is with a professional cleaning. So it is best to brush your pet's teeth at least once every other day.  Also you want to make sure you are using a pet safe toothpaste.  We recommend CET Enzymatic toothpaste.  The enzymes help to break down the bacteria in the plaque and it comes in three pet friendly flavors; vanilla mint, poultry and malt.
Dental care in pets can be intimidating.  You will have to slowly desensitize your pet to the toothbrush, the toothpaste and the act of brushing. To see a demonstration CLICK HERE.
What if your pet will not tolerate having their teeth brushed?  There are many other options for your pet's dental health.
Dentacetic Wipes-An abrasive pad impregnated with a chemical that disrupts the biofilm on the teeth
                              caused by plaque and bacteria.
Oravet Sealant-A waxy substance that is applied to the tooth surface weekly to decrease plaque from
CET Oral Rinse-An antiseptic rinse that is applied to the tooth surface to inhibit plaque formation.
Maxiguard Oral Gel-An antiseptic gel that is applied to the tooth surface to inhibit plaque formation.

Greenies Treat*-A dental bone/treat that mechanically cleans the teeth.

Tartar Shield Rawhide*-A dental bone that mechanically and chemically cleans the teeth.

CET Chews-A dental bone/treat that mechanically and chemically cleans the teeth.

CET Veggiedent Chew*-A dental bone that mechanically cleans the teeth.

Science Diet Oral Care*-A diet that is formulated to mechanically clean the teeth.

Hill's Prescription Diet T/D*-A diet that is formulated to mechanically clean the teeth.

*These products are certified by the VOHC (Veterinary Oral Health Council)

If you have any questions about the products mentioned above, call your friendly veterinarians at Kingsbrook Animal Hospital in Frederick, MD for more information.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Dental Nutrition Recommendations at KAH

Dental disease is an ongoing concern in our companion dogs and cats.  All cats and dogs will at some point experience a level of dental disease that will benefit from being addressed by a thorough dental cleaning under anesthesia. 

Just like you or I benefit from having our teeth professionally cleaned every 6 months so do our pets.  Just like our dentist we are able to scale plaque and tartar that accumulates under the gum line that is difficult to eliminate with routine home care. 

When we brush our teeth everyday it contributes to our oral health and hopefully makes our routine visits to the dentist just that, “routine”.  Our goal with our own dental home care is to minimize gingivitis and gum disease that leads to progressive periodontal disease.  The same goes for our pets. 
Now we all know that not all four legged friends are created equal in their tolerance of dental home care in its forms of brushing, oral rinses and wipes.  This leaves us with diets and treats.  There are so many products on the market that are labeled to benefit our pet’s oral health. 

As veterinary professionals we hold stock in products that have the VOHC seal of approval.  VOHC stands for Veterinary Oral Health Council and includes 9 veterinary dentists and dental scientists that have established pre-set standards for products that reduce plaque and tartar with continued use.  

Some of the products that are included on this list that we strongly recommend to our patients are Science Diet t/d prescription food for both cats and dogs, Tartar Shield soft rawhide chews for dogs, and greenies for cats and dogs and Virbac CET veggie dents for dogs.  You can access information about other products with the VOHC seal of approval at
If you are interested in more information, call Kingsbrook Animal Hospital's veterinary team in Frederick, MD

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

But My Pet's Teeth Look Fine in Frederick, MD

Ranee reviewing dental radiographs.
Although your pet’s teeth may look healthy on the surface, problems and disease may be lurking below. Two-thirds of your pet’s teeth are under the gingiva (or gumline). This makes dental radiographs (xrays) an invaluable tool. Studies have shown that without dental radiographs, significant dental disease is missed in up to 75% of pets! Here at KAH, we utilize our dental radiograph machine to avoid missing problematic areas and teeth.  

Hidden abscess.  Tooth visually looks fine.

   Dental radiographs allow assessment of tooth fractures, internal tooth disease, disease associated with structures around the tooth, cysts, abscesses, bone loss, tumors, or foreign objects. X-rays show if teeth are positioned wrong, are abnormal, or are non-vital (dead). 

   Some teeth appear to be missing. Dental radiographs help to determine if they have broken off below the gum line, have been “eaten away” due to dental disease, or have never erupted. Un-erupted teeth can cause cyst formation and although oral cysts are benign, as they expand from continuous fluid secretion, they can cause severe local destruction. Bone, periodontal tissues, and teeth can be destroyed. 

Bone loss from bacteria in the mouth.
Bone loss also occurs when the bacteria that is present along the gumline attacks the bone and the ligament that holds each tooth in place. Abscesses can form when bacteria invades the bone around the root tip. Some infections are buried deep into solid bone and seldom drain to the outside. These abscesses are hidden infections and can only be seen on dental radiographs. Abscesses of the maxillary (upper) fourth premolar can erode through the bone, resulting in a swelling below the eye. 

   Many of these diseases can cause pets discomfort and pain. They aren’t able to tell us where it hurts. Without the aid of dental radiographs, these problems may not be uncovered until the problem worsens! 

   If you have questions about your pet’s teeth, or are interested in more information please contact Kingsbrook Animal Hospital located in Frederick, MD at 301-631-6900.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Train Your Pet to Love Grooming and Nail Trims in Frederick, MD

You finally mustered the nerve to carry out the task you’ve been dreading all week—a must because you’re having guests and you want Fido to look his best! Brush in one hand, nail clippers in the other, you hunt for Fido throughout the house. . “I got him. He’s over here!” shouts your spouse. The two of you conspire to hold the struggling Cocker Spaniel down to give a toenail trim and groom his mats out but after just seconds you both give up.

Many pet parents are afraid or unable to trim their dog or cat’s nails and some are even unable to brush their pets. You might think it’s not a big deal; however, these are essential pet care tasks that may need to be performed on a regular basis. Untrimmed or worn nails can snag on objects and tear as well as cause abnormal walking gait. They can even grow so long that they curve around back into the foot causing lameness and pain. Long nails can also cause damage to furniture and can scratch humans who are playing with their long-nailed pets.  Brushing is also essential in pets with long-hair or thick coats in order to prevent matting, help decrease shedding, and prevent associated skin problems.

You might thing you can avoid the issue by sending your pet to the veterinary hospital or groomer to have these tasks done, but many pets are just as bad there and consequently the events are extremely stressful and can get worse with each visit. Luckily it turns out that both dogs and cats can be trained to allow and even enjoy grooming and toenail trims. The trick is to pair the event with something positive and to train in systematic steps. 

Training pets to love having their nails trimmed
For instance, to train a pet to tolerate toenail trim we want to associate the procedure with good things, such as food. Start with whatever the pet can handle easily. For instance for pets who bolt at the sight of toenail trimmers you don’t want to start by pairing a toenail trimming with food. Rather, pair the sight of the trimmers with good things—place them near their food bowl so the pet has to be near it every day when they eat or put a treat such as canned food, peanut butter, or spray cheese on the nail trimmer handles so the pet can lick the treat off every time they walk by. Alternatively for pets who eat inanimate objects with food on them, you can hold the trimmers with treats on it and remove the trimmers once the food is all licked off.

Once the pet consistently acts as if she’s about to get treats when she see the trimmers you can go on to the next step of pairing foot handling with treats. The easiest variation uses two people—one to give treats and one to handle the feet. First have the pet sit in a comfortable position. Start by giving treats once the pet’s in a happy state start rubbing the feet lightly. The goal is the pet just focuses on the food, so if he acts like he notices his feet are being touched you’ll need to make the handling even easier—by handling higher up the leg instead. After several seconds of handling and feeding, stop and remove you handling hand and then the food-dispensing hand. Wait about five seconds then repeat the procedure. 

The timing can be crucial because we want to make it clear that handling the foot equals treats, no handling equals no treats, and we always want the pet in a positive emotional state. When the pet’s good at this step go to pairing more vigorous handling with treats. With each step handle the feet more vigorously, but only go to the next step when you’re sure he associates the previous step with good things. In later steps, practice putting the clippers over the nail so your pet gets used to the feel paired with treats. And the final step is pairing the actual toenail clipping with treats. Beyond this, you can also progress to clipping the nail and giving the treats afterwards too. Just be sure that when you clip, you avoid clipping into the pink part of the nail that contains the blood vessel and nerves or you’ll set the process back.

Training pets to love being groomed
Even if your pet hates both procedures, if you retrain him in a systematic manner, the training can go quickly. In fact for some pets you don’t even need to be very systematic about the process if they act like they only care about the food. Sometimes the process takes just minutes. Sometimes it takes a week with twice daily, short sessions. You may also need coaching from veterinary staff who are trained in these techniques or you may want to just find a hospital or groomer trained in these low stress behavior modification techniques..

Visit for more information. Just be sure to always stay below the level of handling that causes your pet to react and be sure to consistently pair the handling with something the pet loves. Before you know it toenail trims and grooming will be fun for you and your pet!

Dr. Sophia Yin is the author of the book and DVD Low Stress Handling, Restraint and Behavior Modification of Dogs & Cats.

If you have any questions or concerns, you should always visit or call your veterinarian – they are your best resource to ensure the health and well-being of your pets.