Monday, 25 February 2013
My Dearest Maggie 01/07/2013

Maggie was my everything.  She was best friend, my comfort, and a big part of my life.  A wonderful birthday gift from my husband, she arrived in our arms in January of 2009.  When we went to meet her, she was so excited to see us, she had an accident.  My husband and I took that as a sign that she was the one for us and that we were going to adopt her.  We were unsure how old she was at the time and knew before us she had a rough life.  Found on the streets, a litter of pups left behind, skinny, and starving with scars to mark her strong heart, we knew we wanted to give her a good life.

She's not any ordinary dog you see.  She was unique with such a great personality, never a dull moment with her.  Her heart of gold was so wonderful, that she could melt anyone's heart.  This girl loved to go.  Car rides, to a good walk in the woods, chewing on her toys, to playing with her little brother, Luke the Rottie.  Watching her bounce up and down through the tall grass, running with the biggest smile on her face was the most amazing thing to see.  She was one happy dog and a big part of our family.

Maggie may only been with us for 4 years but I felt like we had her since the day she was born.  She traveled everywhere with us.  Moved all over the world with us and was always by my side.  She was always excited to go but also couldn't wait for you to sit down and relax. She loved her naps. Curled up in her blanket was the highlight of her day.  The minute you would hear her snore, you knew it was a great day!

It's hard for me to know that she is gone.  What's even harder is to put it into words how truly amazing she really was.  She was special, she wasn't just my friend,  she was our Rottweiler's best friend. She was our little blanket of warmth that loved her family.  It brings me tears and sadness that I know she won't be the heartbeat at my feet.  I know now that she is no longer in pain and once again happy.  I will truly miss her wet nose kisses and her snuggles in bed. I miss her kooky personality that showed when she try to scratch her back and would do her little rub down dance on the carpet.

She put so many wonderful memories with our family that she will defiantly never be forgotten.

A poem to my beloved Maggie:

Rainbow Bridge
Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.
When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.

All the animals that had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor. Those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.
They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent. His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together....

Author unknown...

Rest in Peace my love and will see you at Rainbow Bridge.

Yours Truly,
The Anderson Family

Posted on 02/25/2013 10:01 AM by Lisa Tokach
Monday, 25 February 2013
Have a Heart!

Rosie came in all dressed up for her wellness exam last week.  She was looking great for Valentine's Day!  Everything was looking great and she is healthy.  Some pets have underlying health conditions that can be picked up on physical exam.  For example, have you ever wondered what it means if someone has a heart murmur?  Did you know that pets can get heart mumurs, also?  Everytime the heart beats it "pushes" blood through the body.  A heart murmur is the sound that can be heard each time the heart beats that tells us that blood is not flowing in the proper direction.  In younger animals it can be the sign of a congenital birth defect.  In older animals it can tell us that the valves or heart muscle are starting to show signs of weakness as the pet ages. 

The longer a pet has a heart murmur, the more likely it is that the heart will enlarge to continue to "push" the proper amount of blood.  Overtime this weakens the heart and can make it function less effectively.  When this happens the pet may tire easily, develop a cough, start to get an enlarged abdomen or have episodes of weakness or "fainting". 

Heart murmurs can easily be identified with a thorough physical exam.  Although heart disease is not something that we can "cure" if a murmur is identified on exam, Xrays are often recommended to look for changes in heart size and shape that would tell the doctor if medication to help the heart pump more effectively are necessary.  Fortunately, we can often detect these changes long before the pet shows clincial signs.  This allows us to slow the progression of the heart disease to help the pet live longer. 

Don't let a "slight" heart murmur slow your pet down!  Schedule your wellness exam, today!

Posted on 02/25/2013 10:16 AM by Roberta Grange, DVM
Monday, 18 February 2013
Schedule your doggie dental!

Imagine for a moment that you stopped brushing your teeth.  Not just for today, but for the next 5 years.  Do you think it would change the look of your pearly whites when you smile?  Affect how close people stand to you when you talk?  Maybe alter the taste of your food?  Well, the same thing happens with your pets. 

Pets need regular dental care, just like we do.  Without it they can develop tartar build up, bad breath, gum disease and dental infections.  Left untreated these can progress to painful teeth, tooth loss, lack of appetite and even spread of bacteria to other parts of the body.  Once tartar has accumulated on the teeth a professional cleaning under anesthesia is the only way to get the teeth clean and evaluate the pet for any other underlying dental issues.

Though not all pets are appreciative of daily brushing, there are many products on the market that can help to minimize the buildup of bacteria and tartar and help keep the mouth cleaner and healthier.  Though these products will not likely eliminate the need for professional cleanings entirely, they can reduce the number of cleanings that are necessary over the course of your pet's lifetime and prevent the progression of tartar to a more serious infection. 

A dental exam is part of every comprehensive physical exam we perform.  If dental disease is detected we will make recommendations for what can be done to address the problem.  Discounts on dental cleanings are offered for the entire month of February.  Schedule your pet's dental exam today! 

Up next: "Have a heart: The hidden danger of heart disease"

Posted on 02/18/2013 9:37 AM by Roberta Grange, DVM
Monday, 4 February 2013
February is Pet Wellness Month at AAH!

Did you know that keeping your pet well involves more than vaccinations?  Though vaccinations remain the most important way to protect your pet against serious infectious disease such as parvo and feline distemper, in adult and senior pets there are many other health issues that can cause serious illness if left undetected or treated. 

Dental disease, heart disease, ear infections and arthritis are all conditions that often develop in adult animals.  In most pets they don't happen "overnight" but gradually over several months to years.  A comprehensive physical exam will help identify these issues in the early stages so that appropriate treatment can be recommended to prevent a minor issue from becoming a serious emergency. 

February is Wellness Month at Abilene Animal Hospital.  During this month we offer all of our wellness services such as exams, vaccinations, senior blood screening, heartworm tests, and fecal exams at a discount.   Let us help you keep your pet happy and healthy for years to come.  Schedule your wellness appointment today!                                                                            

Coming next week:  "Dental health: Something to Sink Your Teeth Into"

Posted on 02/04/2013 10:13 AM by Dr. Roberta Grange
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