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Health Maintenance Services in Antelope Valley

Health Care for Lancaster PetsInternal Medicine

To best protect your pet's health and overall well-being, Smith Veterinary Hospital offers a broad range of veterinary services. While our focus is on disease prevention and wellness care, you can also rely on our skilled, compassionate medical team when your pet is sick. To that end, an important part of our practice is the diagnosis and non-surgical treatment of diseases that can affect your pet's internal organs and body systems.

Our experienced veterinarians, supported by Smith Veterinary Hospital's advanced diagnostic technology, have expertise in diagnosing and treating complex internal medicine cases such as kidney, heart, respiratory, immune-mediated and endocrine diseases.

Allergies and Dermatology

If left untreated, allergy-related conditions can fester and become serious health concerns for your pet. Therefore, it is important to be able to identify the first signs and symptoms of allergies and dermatological conditions. These include:

  • Inflamed ears
  • Hotspots, especially those that recur
  • Scratching
  • Rubbing the eyes or mouth area
  • Flaking
  • Lesions on the skin
  • Hair loss
  • Red itchy bumps on the skin
  • Asthma-like wheezing or respiratory issues

These problems can indicate a serious dermatological or allergic reaction to allergens such as fleas, pollen, dust and various foods. If you notice any of these symptoms, it is important that you bring your pet in to Smith Veterinary Hospital for an evaluation. If left untreated, these problems can become severe medical concerns.

Our veterinarians take the time to explain your pet's condition, how to prevent future occurrences and the proper method of treatment.

Glaucoma Prevention

Glaucoma doesn't only affect humans; your pet can develop glaucoma, too. Drs. Garha and Flynn are skilled at identifying the early signs of this dangerous eye condition.

Glaucoma is a condition in which the fluid pressure inside the eye increases to a point where the optic nerve is damaged, causing loss of vision and blindness. There are two types of glaucoma: chronic glaucoma, which is relatively common in animals and can develop as your pet ages, and acute glaucoma, which is the result of an injury or illness.

In many cases, glaucoma can progress quite rapidly — especially when it is the result of injury or underlying illness — and is considered an emergency situation.

Symptoms to look for include:

  • Redness in the eye
  • Tearing or discharge
  • Eye sensitivity to light
  • Pain
  • Cloudy-looking eye
  • Bulging eyeball

Due to the severity and incidence of glaucoma, we recommend your pet be checked regularly for this disease. A routine glaucoma exam is not only an effective screening measure for chronic and acute glaucoma, but can also help set a baseline measurement. Setting a baseline measurement is important because normal intraocular pressure (IOP) can vary between species, breeds and even individual pets.

The doctors at Smith Veterinary Hospital use an instrument called a tonometer to measure the fluid pressure inside your pet's eyes. This is a noninvasive, simple procedure that should not cause your pet any pain or discomfort. Your veterinarian will apply a mild anesthetic eye-drop to ensure your pet is comfortable during the exam.

NutritionYour Pet's Nutrition

Pets are living longer, healthier lives than ever before and a big part of that is due to our expanded knowledge connecting proper nutrition with overall good health. In fact, your pet's nutrition is the biggest health variable you control.

To help you keep your pet in optimum health, our doctors can assist you with information on proper serving size and other feeding strategies so your pet can maintain his or her ideal body weight and nutritional health. We can also help you navigate through pet food producers' claims so you can make the most informed nutritional food choice for your pet. For example, dogs and cats are healthiest when they eat the whole, natural foods we would eat ourselves: USDA-inspected chicken, turkey, and lamb, whole grain rice and barley, fresh fruits and vegetables, and Grade A dairy products.

Most cheap commercial pet foods contain filler ingredients and low-grade proteins. It is best to feed your pet a food that is denser, richer in nutrients, and without the added bulk. A high quality food provides more nutrition, with calories and fats formulated to fit the needs of your specific dog or cat.

Prescription Diets

Your pet may encounter serious nutritional challenges or chronic conditions that can benefit from a special diet. If your pet is diagnosed with a specific condition, we may recommend feeding a special prescription diet. Prescription diets benefit medical conditions such as liver disease, bladder and kidney stones, renal failure, food allergies, diabetes and more.

The team at Smith Veterinary Hospital can furnish you with Hill's Science Diet prescription foods and high-quality nutritional products. If your pet requires a prescription diet we do not carry, we can easily order it for you.

Behavior Counseling

If your pet is exhibiting unwanted and troubling behaviors, we can help. The veterinary team at Smith Veterinary Hospital offers behavior counseling for many of your pet's problems, including inappropriate urination or defecation, aggression, separation anxiety, inappropriate chewing and barking and introduction of new pets into the household. Often a behavior problem, such as inappropriate voiding, can be linked to a medical issue like cystitis, bladder stones and kidney disease.

Our veterinarians help you recognize, validate and categorize behavior problems. We work closely with you in developing a specific plan to help eliminate your pet's unwanted behavior. The treatment plan often includes behavior modification and medication-assisted training.

Reproductive MedicineReproductive Medicine

Our experienced, skilled veterinarians and medical team provide the following reproductive medical services for your pet:

  • Pregnancy monitoring and evaluation
  • Assisted birthing
  • Planned Caesarian sections (when appropriate)
  • Follow-up nursing care
  • Spays and neuters

As a part of the reproductive services offered by the doctors at Smith Veterinary Hospital, treatment can be arranged for other problems that affect your pet's reproductive organs, such as vaginitis, prostate disorders and mammary disorders.

Treating Your Pet's Cancer

The word cancer strikes fear in all of us; however, there is hope if your pet is diagnosed with the disease. New advances in veterinary medicine have made possible much longer lives and greatly improved quality of life. Successful cancer treatment often lies in early detection. Early detection can be difficult because cancer may not present itself as a lump on the skin, but may develop inside the body. If possible, our veterinarians will removal your pet's tumor surgically.

Your pet's cancer, depending on the specific type, may be responsive to chemotherapy, including various oral and injectable drugs. Dogs and cats tend to tolerate chemotherapy well and rarely develop side effects similar to humans. If chemotherapy is recommended, we will be happy to refer to you an experienced oncologist for your pet's treatment.

Telemedicine

With telemedicine, our veterinarians can consult with other knowledgeable and skilled healthcare providers by phone or computer. Our veterinarians transmit EKG results and X-rays to trusted veterinarians and specialists outside our practice when a second opinion would best serve the needs of your pet.

Referrals

Should your pet require medical care or treatment outside our area of expertise, the Los Angeles County veterinarians at Smith Veterinary Hospital refer patients to the Animal Specialty Group and the Animal Specialty and Emergency Center when necessary.

If you would like more information about the Los Angeles County pet health maintenance services that Smith Veterinary Hospital offers for your pet or to schedule an appointment at our animal hospital in Lancaster, please call (661) 948-5065.