Volunteer Veterinary Hospital Blog

Packing on the Pounds: Pet Obesity

A fluffy pet is super cute, but what about a fat one? Despite the adorable images of roly poly cats and dogs, there really is nothing cute about an overweight pet.

Pet obesity is a huge factor in the health and quality of life of our animal friends. At Volunteer Veterinary Hospital, helping your pet maintain a healthy weight is a top goal.

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Diabetes in Pets 101

It is Pet Diabetes Awareness Month, and what better time to take a minute to learn about this common affliction in both our dog and cat family members? Join Volunteer Veterinary Hospital as we explain everything you need to know about diabetes in pets.

Diabetes in a Nutshell

Diabetes is one of the most common diseases in the human population in this country, so most of our pet parents have some concept of what this disease is and how it can affect the body. Many people are shocked to find out, though, that our pets can develop this disease, too.

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posted in:  Pet Safety  |  Senior Pet Care

Understanding Urinary Tract Infections in Pets

urinary tract infectionIf your pet is urinating frequently, straining to urinate, or having accidents, there are many possible culprits. At Volunteer Veterinary Hospital, the most frequent reason we find for these symptoms is a urinary tract infection. Urinary tract infections in pets are a common (and painful) problem that is very important to treat right away.

UTIs Explained

Normally the bladder is a sterile place where bacteria are not found. Urinary tract infections in pets start when rouge bacteria from the environment breach the normal defenses of the body and take up residence within the urinary tract.

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The Scoop on Why Dogs Eat Poop

dogs that eat poopEvery dog owner knows their beloved pet sometimes engages in rather distasteful acts – licking themselves at inappropriate times, rummaging through the trash for tasty morsels, investigating dead things, and, arguably the grossest canine behavior: poop eating.

Whether they eat their own poop, raid the litter box, or chomp on wildlife droppings at the park, poop eating (also known as coprophagia) is a disgusting and potentially dangerous habit. Although not every dog owner has to deal with this particular issue, it’s common enough that we want to discuss why dogs eat poop and help you figure out what to do about it.
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posted in:  For The Dogs

Canine Flu: Outbreaks and Updates

Canine Flu Has Reached Knoxville! Dog Flu Outbreak Has Owners On Edge! These are headlines you may have read, seen on social media, or heard about on your nightly news program. And it’s true: canine influenza virus has been spreading throughout the United States since its arrival in 2015. Indeed, it is in Knoxville, along with other parts of the South.

However, while the headlines may seem frightening, we want to assure all pet owners there are ways you can help protect your best fur friend from canine flu. This includes becoming informed of the risks, vaccinating your pet, and staying up-to-date on what’s happening with canine flu in your area.

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posted in:  For The Dogs

Knowledge Is Power: Understanding Canine Parvovirus

canine parvovirusCanine parvovirus is considered a core vaccination for dogs, and you have probably heard it mentioned briefly during a pet’s wellness appointment. Some of us know a bit about the disease, or may even know someone who has lost a puppy or adult dog to canine parvovirus.

Because parvo is so prevalent, and so deadly, it’s important for pet owners to be aware of the specifics surrounding its symptoms, how it’s contracted and treated and, most importantly, how you can prevent it from becoming a reality for your pet.

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posted in:  For The Dogs

Working with Your Veterinarian: The Basics of Pet Pharmacy Refills

pet prescription refilYour dog’s ears are at it again. She has had more ear infections than you can count, and you know all the signs. Her ears are red, she is scratching like crazy, and you can smell them from across the room. You call your established veterinarian and ask for a refill on the ear medication that was prescribed last time… and are told that you need to make an appointment.

This all too common occurrence is very frustrating to most pet owners. After all, you know what the problem is and you know what helped before. Pet pharmacy refills aren’t always so straightforward, though. Read on to learn how veterinarians & staff at Volunteer Veterinary Hospital is working to be sure we do right by you and your pet.

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Pet Gastroenterology: A Tough Problem to Stomach

pet gastroenterologyThere are few worse sounds to wake up to than your pet getting ready to toss his or her cookies on your bed. However, pets experience all sorts of tummy trouble, and for many different reasons. If your furry family friend is plagued by gastrointestinal issues, it can be a tough problem to get a handle on.

Lucky for you, your expert veterinarians at Volunteer Veterinary Hospital know just how to help with pet gastroenterology.

Signs of Tummy Trouble

That rumble in your pet’s belly might just be digestion, but it could also be a sign of trouble on the horizon. Pets can experience acute (sudden) gastrointestinal issues or more chronic problems. There are several indications that your four-legged family member may need to be examined.
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Pet Skin Problems and You

pet dermatologyIt is probably the most common reason for pets to come visit us, and it isn’t what you might think. Pet skin problems top the list of reasons that people make appointments for their furry family members here at Volunteer Veterinary Hospital. Read on to learn all you ever wanted to know about this problem in pets.

Pet Skin Problems

Pet skin problems can present in many ways. They can happen any time of year, but we do tend to see seasonal fluctuations in issues. It is often hard to miss if your pet is having trouble, but common symptoms of skin trouble can include:

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Understanding the Signs of Heart Disease in Pets

pet diagnosticFor humans, heart disease is the leading cause of death. We’re told to eat more kale, practice yoga, and reduce stress in order to minimize the risk of cardiac arrest or stroke. Cats and dogs, on the other hand, can share a similar diagnosis—but their symptoms are not easily managed or prevented in the same ways. From congenital heart defects to cardiomyopathy, it’s important to learn about heart disease in pets so we can help early on.

The Scope

During your pet’s routine wellness exam, we listen to his or her heart with a stethoscope. To be sure, this is one of the best tools we have to identify heart problems. If we hear a heart murmur or suspect the valves aren’t functioning properly, we use digital diagnostics such as x-rays, EKG, or an echocardiogram to verify heart disease in pets.
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Testimonials

"Volunteer Veterinary Hospital has been caring for our pets for many years and will continue to do so for many more due to the skill and dedication of the professionals who lead the organization."
— Joe & Helen Bruner

"All my pets have been patients at Volunteer Veterinary for at least the last 20 years. The entire staff has always gone above and beyond to make sure my dogs have been properly taken care of. I wouldn’t think of going anywhere else."
— Phylis Flenniken

"I want to thank you and your entire staff for all that you do for my dogs. I’ll never forget when we lost our precious Sapphire years ago; and the way you allowed me to come daily and spend time with her. Your compassion and kindness was so comforting to us during our time of loss."
— Sherry Meacham & Roscoe

"Let me say that I feel honored to reference in behalf of my experience with Volunteer Vet Hospital. I admire Dr Bihl and his staff, they are very kind and considerate. I enjoyed my visits and knew they were compassionate and caring people."
— Susan Oglietti