Best Friends Pet Care : The Dog Dish
Best Friends Pet Care : The Dog Dish



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Best Friends Pet Care : The Dog Dish

Tag Archives: cats

“We’re going where?!” How to help your cat deal with the stress of a visit to the vet

Anyone who is owned by a cat knows that cats are very opinionated about going to the vet’s office. Unfortunately, cats can be really good about hiding signs of illness so routine veterinary visits are an important part of making sure your kitty stays healthy.

The good news is that the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) has developed some guidelines which pet owners can use to reduce the stress associated with going to the vet. Some of these tips include:

Make the carrier a “safe place”

  • You may have already noticed that your cat begins to feel anxious the minute the carrier comes out of the closet. This is why behaviorists actually recommend leaving it out in a common room where the cat sees it all the time and is used to it. Placing cat nip, toys, and some bedding with your scent on it in the carrier will also make it a more welcoming place.
  • Remember that getting accustomed to the carrier in this way takes days to weeks.

Choose the right carrier

  • A hard-sided carrier that opens from the front and the top is best. Removing the cat from the top of the carrier once at the vets office is much easier (and less stressful) than pulling him or her out of the front or unceremoniously dumping them on the exam table.
  • These carriers are also easier to secure with a seatbelt in the car for the ride to and from the office.

Consider using feline facial hormone sprays

  • Commercially available feline hormone sprays can be helpful in decreasing anxiety in cats. These products can be sprayed on the carrier at least 30 minutes prior to placing the cat in the carrier for transport.

Cover the carrier

  • At the vet’s office, consider keeping the carrier covered with a light towel or sheet so that it is a little darker and quieter for your cat. Less stimuli may help decrease nervousness.
  • If you can, keep the carrier off the ground where it is more likely to be jostled or sniffed by a curious dog.

Reintegrate slowly

  • Coming home from the office can sometimes be stressful as well if there are other cats in the house. The other cats may they may think that the returning cat “smells funny” which can create tension among the cats. Depending on how the cats are reacting, it may be a good idea to let the returning cat be alone in a separate room for a few hours.

A trip to the veterinarian’s office can be stressful but, with a little planning and patience, you can make the experience a much more pleasant one for both you and your feline friend. For a list of Best Friends veterinarians click here.

Tags: Ask the Vet, Cats, Pet advice, Pet behavior, Pet info, Tips

Pets & Pet Owners Invited to Grand Opening of New Vet Hospital in Castleton

Tails will be wagging on Saturday, Sept. 13 when Best Friends Total Pet Care celebrates the opening of its new full-service veterinary hospital at 8224 Bash St, Indianapolis.

Well-mannered four-legged friends on leash and their human companions are invited to meet veterinarian Dr. Renae Swiatkowski, and take a tour of the facility between noon and 4 p.m. 

Guests can enjoy free nail trims, free pet photos, a raffle for prices and giveaways. There will be activities throughout the afternoon, including a doggy ice cream social and musical matts. Guests can also take part in a doggy “shedding” competition, a hot dog limbo contest and other games.

There will also be pet adoptions with Central Indiana Lab Rescue and Mended Hearts Rescue.

Best Friends Total Pet Care’s new veterinary hospital will offer complete health and medical care for dogs, cats as well as some small animals. Services include routine pet health care exams, vaccinations, emergency care, general surgery and dentistry. The practice offers on-site diagnostic testing, radiology and laboratory services. To encourage pet owners to provide health care for their companion animals, the hospital is offering free initial exams for new pet patients.

Hospital hours are Mondays through Fridays from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Walk-ins are welcome after 9 a.m. For more information or directions to the grand opening party, call 317- 841-8182 or visit the website at


Tags: Ask the Vet, Best friends news, Best Friends Spotlight, Cats, Dogs, Grand Opening, Pet Events, Pet info, Pets, Vet

Best Friends Opens Veterinary Hospital with Free Initial Exams

Complete care for dogs and cats under one roof now available in Prairie View

Prairie View, IL, August 27, 2014 — Best Friends Total Pet Care has added a full-service veterinary hospital to it pet care center at 22096 North Pet Lane. The facility now provides comprehensive pet care services — boarding, day camp, grooming, training and veterinary care — all in one convenient location.

The new veterinary hospital opened August 11. Led by Cassandra Lewis, DVM, the practice offers complete health care and medical services for dogs, cats as well as some small animals, including routine health care exams and vaccinations, general surgery and dentistry. The hospital has on-site diagnostic testing, radiology and laboratory services to ensure prompt diagnosis and treatment. Working with Dr. Lewis, will be Catherine O’Keefe, DVM.

Every new pet patient of the hospital will receive a free initial exam. In addition, to encourage pet owners to provide routine health care for their companion animals, Best Friends is launching a pet wellness plan. The Total Care Plan covers a free annual exam, unlimited office visits and discounts on routine health services, plus a 10 percent discount on other pet care services – including boarding, grooming and doggy day camp.

“Our goal is to provide outstanding health care service to pets — and their owners — in a caring and compassionate environment,” says Dr. Lewis. “Our services are designed to help every pet live the healthiest, happiest life possible.”

Dr. Lewis is a graduate of the Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine. She completed her internship at the Kendall Road Equine Hospital in Elgin, before moving to Wisconsin to work with companion animals at a mixed animal care hospital. Her specialties are surgery, preventative care, and internal medicine. Dr. Lewis and her husband recently returned to Illinois and share their home with two dogs and two cats and an assortment of fish and other sea creatures.

Dr. O’Keefe graduated from University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine and completed her internship at VCA Berwyn and Aurora. She worked in internal and emergency medicine for several years, then in the Oncology and Hematology Department at the Ohio State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital. Since returning to general practice, she has studied veterinary acupuncture and herbal medicine, which she employs in her practice. She moved to Chicagoland two years ago with her husband, two children and two cats.

A grand opening celebration is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 6 from 12 to 4 p.m. Pet lovers are invited to join the staff for contests and games, tours, free nail trims, raffles and giveaways.

The hospital is open Mondays through Fridays from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Walk-ins are welcome after 9 a.m. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 847-634-9444 or visit the website at

Tags: Best friends news, Best Friends Spotlight, Cats, Dogs, Grand Opening, Pet Events, Pet health, Pet info, Vet
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