Feline Calicivirus- Just How Important Is that FVRCP Vaccine Series For My Kitten?

Calicivirus is a commonly spread upper respiratory infection (URI) in cats seen in shelters, crowded rescue/breeder environments and even in feral cat colonies. Fortunately, it is preventable with the FVRCP vaccination. Calicivirus is highly contagious to the unvaccinated cat no matter what age which is why it is considered a CORE vaccine by the AAFP and the AVMA. Let’s breakdown the FVRCP vaccine and show what it protects against. FV (Feline Viral), R (Rhinotracheitis), C (Calicivirus), P (Panelukopenia.) In the neonate and pediatric patient all 3 can be deadly.  All 3 can infect cats by direct exposure (including sneezing), contaminated bedding, food/water bowls and by the human caretaker who fails to practice proper hygiene while working with multiple cats.  Stress plays a great role in URI in cats in the crowded shelter setting. Calicivirus in particular is a URI that can be mild and subclinical or present “Virulent Systemic” that can cause painful mouth and throat ulcerations that can prevent the kitten from eating causing further detrimental effects on the body from malnourishment.  Not only the mouth, but the nasal passages and eyes can ulcerate as well.  In kittens, they commonly develop pneumonia from secondary bacterial infections or even aspiration of food due to the inability to properly eat.  Some kittens even have joint pain associated with the disease. It is recommended that kittens start their FVRCP series at 6-8 weeks of age with boosters every 3 weeks until 16 week of age.  Adult cats dependent on age and risk of exposure should get booster vaccines yearly or every 3 years by the recommendation of their veterinarian. With the pediatric patient it is important to remember that they need to be examined by a veterinarian [...]

By | April 18th, 2018|Pet Safety|0 Comments

Does My Cat Need Heartworm Protection? – Update

Spring is around the corner and so are mosquitoes.  These pest can infect your cat with heartworms.  Click here to see more information about heartworm disease Take heart that there are easy methods to prevent and protect you furry friends from this disease.  Revolution is an all in one product that will protect your cat from other parasites (fleas, ticks, and internal parasites). Zoetis has a rebate program that will help you provide great health care for your cat. The video will show you how to get enrolled.  

By | April 3rd, 2018|Pet Safety|0 Comments

Can I Walk My Cat On A Leash?

As the days get longer and warmer, we all want to be outside.  We do get asked if cats can go out on a leash. The answer is yes, but it is best to practice indoors.  Harnesses are better than collars since they are harder to escape.  Most cats will get use to having a harness on their bodies. People do act like they have never seen a cat when they see one on a leash. As with most things cat, the cat walks you not the other way around. We have video of us putting on a leash on my cat.  The second video is from Buzz Feed and is pretty humorous. All right folks. Let's see. Here we are. We're going to show you how to put a harness on a cat. This is Patrick-- Hi. --and Bart. So Bart is a really good guy. Quickly put this on around his torso All right, Buddy Boy. Bart is Mr. Tolerant. He is very tolerant. So you might have a little bit more difficulty at home with your feline. And you might let them get used to it. Just takes a little while. Usually most cats will acclimate to it, then you can take them outside and walk them on a leash, and everyone will look at you like you got three eyes. And that's putting a harness on a cat. See you later. Take care.    

By | March 29th, 2018|Pet Safety|0 Comments

Cats And Lilies Do Not Mix

Spring is around the corner.  All of us here at NOVA Cat Clinic want to make sure that your cat is safe during the spring holiday season. We try to bring awareness that Lilies are EXTREMELY toxic to cats. If you have a cat, do NOT have any lilies in you house.  Even the pollen is toxic.  We will have links to previous years post for further information. All parts of the lily plant are dangerous, including the flowers, stamens, stems, leaves and roots – even the pollen. If a cat gets pollen on its coat and then grooms, it could still cause fatal illness. Cats that get pollen on themselves should be thoroughly bathed as soon as possible. Most of the time we figure out that our cat has eaten lilies when we find a piece on the floor. Sometimes it is in a pile of vomit. When it comes to lilies, it is imperative that you seek emergency medical treatment for your cat as soon as possible to ensure proper and effective treatment. In approximately 2-4 days after ingestion of the plant, your cat may begin to show signs of kidney failure. If enough toxin is absorbed to cause acute kidney failure, then the likelihood that your cat will respond to treatment is poor. A cat affected by lily intoxication will initially show signs of an upset stomach, vomiting, a lack of interest in food, and lethargy. These initial signs may appear within 2-12 hours of ingestion and may disappear after 12 hours. The cat may improve briefly or appear to act normal before the condition progresses to serious acute renal failure within 48 to 72 hours. Once a cat’s kidneys have been damaged to the point [...]

How Do I Understand Cat Food Labels? Or Getting That Summer Body In The Winter

Today I’m going to discuss general nutrition - what to look for on the bag, what all that mumbo jumbo even means, and food puzzles! If you have an overweight cat or two at home we have plenty of room in Team FatCat bootcamp! Just contact the clinic and we’ll get you in touch with one of our assistants who specialize in feline nutrition (Sophie speaking, hello!) Reading the Bag – What to Look For When selecting a pet food, there is nothing more critical than an AAFCO statement. The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) has conducted a lot of research and they are the organization that maintains the standards for complete and balanced nutrition for our pets. All commercially sold pet foods should have an AAFCO statement that confirms they maintain the nutritional requirements our pets need – if they do not provide an AAFCO statement, drop that bag like it’s hot!   Ok, so it’s AAFCO approved, what does that even mean? Unlike humans, who have to delicately construct our diets from different foods in all the categories of the food pyramid, our pets depend on their food to provide all the nutrients they need in the proportions that they need them in. Pet food companies can meet the standards set by AAFCO in one of two ways: feeding trials or formulations. If a company has conducted a feeding trial, they have physically feed their product to animals and studied how they respond. A feeding trial AAFCO statement will state “Animal feeding tests using AAFCO procedures substantiate that ___ provides complete and balanced nutrition for __ of __ cats.” Alternatively, pet food companies can simply formulate their foods to meet AAFCO [...]

How Are The NOVA Foster Doing? Here Are Updates.

We wanted to let you know how some of the NOVA Fosters are faring and some new fosters that have joined the group.  Your generous donations have made it possible for these poor cats to receive veterinary care. First, Magnus is doing very well in his new home.  He has gained 2 lb since he first came here.  His main health issue is rhinitis.  He has a chronic nasal discharge. His foster parents are doing a great job with his nursing care and he continues to thrive.  Thank you all for contributions. Piccadilly came to the Chris Griffey Memorial Feline Foundation (CGMFF) because of atresia ani.  This is a condition where the end of the gastrointestinal tract is not complete.  There are various degrees and some can be corrected with ballooning.  Our former foster, Jonathan had this condition. If you would like to learn more, click here  Jonathan had a severe case, but was fixed after 3 ballooning’s.  He is doing extremely well now, and has not looked back. Unfortunately for Piccadilly, her ballooning has not been as successful.  She has developed a secondary problem call Megacolon.  Since she has had issues defecating, her colon has stretched and is too big.  There is no longer any movement in the part of body.  She is having a surgery called a Subtotal Colectomy. Her colon will be removed so that she can defecate . She will need a second surgery to repair the end of the gastrointestinal tract and that will happen once she is healed from the Subtotal Colectomy. She is a real trooper and appears to be bouncing back quickly from her surgery.  Her foster mom id doing an amazing job with her nursing care.  Unfortunately, [...]

By | March 4th, 2018|Community|0 Comments

Does My Cat Need Teeth Cleaning? Hi, everybody. Welcome back. We're here at Nova Cat Clinic in Arlington, Virginia. My name's Dr. Erica Barron. And this is Ellen Carozza, our head technician. She's better, but she had pneumonia. So her voice isn't very strong. So we're going to do the best we can. Right? Sure can. Sure can. So today, since it's dental health month, we're not drinking coffee or tea because we're in our dental suite. And we don't drink coffee and tea in here, though I really would like a cup of tea right now. So we're just going to talk you through, kind of show you what we do, during a dental-- without a cat. Because we're done with those already today. We did a good job and we finished them. So the first thing we do when a cat comes in for a dental is we do a pre-op exam. So we listen to them really well. We make sure they look like they're bright, alert, and responsive. They're happy and healthy. And then, Ellen sedates them. And she's very good at that. And if she's not here then I sedate them. I'm good at that, too. But she's better. Because she does this special hold and she hugs them very tightly [laughter]. Do you want to talk about how you pre-medicate the cats? Well, basically the sedation that we use is a type of anesthesia. We're not putting them under a deep plane of anesthesia just yet. They're under a lighter plane of anesthesia so we can simply get an IV catheter in place and take any kind of necessary dental x-rays, which every single patient that we do dentistry on gets pre-- x-rays before we [...]

By | February 18th, 2018|Community, Wellness|0 Comments

Does Your Cat Have Allergies? Hi everybody, welcome back. I'm Dr. Erica Barron, and I'm here in NOVA Cat Clinic in Arlington, Virginia. I know I usually have Ellen with me, but Ellen has pneumonia, and she has no voice. So it would not do you any good. But we had a couple of requests just for us to talk about feline allergies. So I was going to talk to you just for a couple of minutes about that. So feel free to ask any questions. If you're online or if you want us to talk about something else about your cat, we're happy to answer questions. But remember we're very good at saying, "Ah, we're not sure you might want to go to the vet to check that out." So real fast, feline allergies don't necessarily look like human allergies or dog allergies because they're not dogs and they're not humans. One of the things that I often see with feline allergies is sometimes they'll start to sniffle just like people, but a lot of times they start having some debris in their ears, or you'll notice some excoriations around their ears, or scratching around their ears. And sometimes they have pinpoint dermatitis. It almost looks like blackheads. It can happen in their chins. Sometimes, it happens in their ventral abdomen or their lower abdomen. And sometimes, it happens in their feet. Once in a while, when it happens in their feet, I always worry if they're having a contact dermatitis or something to their litter. That's not common, but it's something to think about. So those are the things that you usually see.  It can get so severe that they get secondary asthma, and they can get [...]

By | February 12th, 2018|Pet Safety, Wellness|0 Comments

Meet Our New Doctors

Meet Our New Veterinarians With the move from 923 N Kenmore to 3838 Cathedral Lane, there have been lots of changes.  Some of these changes include new veterinarians and the return of some old friends. Dr Erica Barron will be on maternity leave so some of the veterinarians will be here  part-time. Sam Gilbert, VMD  Dr Gilbert will be working with us during the week. He will be primarily doing surgeries and urgent care. This will help us be able to expand these services to you. Dr. Sam Gilbert earned his Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics from the University of Pennsylvania. He stayed on at Penn, where he earned his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine in 2015. After veterinary school, Dr. Gilbert completed a one-year small animal rotating internship at Hope Advanced Veterinary Center in Vienna, VA. He also had an additional year of surgical training.  Originally from Vienna, he now lives in Arlington, VA, with his wife, Annie, and their cat Calvin.   Tyler Anderson, DVM Dr Anderson has been working with us on Saturdays.  He has helped us expanded our Saturday hours.  He does not work with us during the week. Dr. Anderson was born in San Diego, CA but he has lived in Arlington, VA since attending Yorktown High School. He wanted to be a veterinarian at an early age and worked at McLean Animal Hospital as a kennel assistant to gain experience in the field. His interests include ultrasound, cardiology, and rehabilitation. Dr. Anderson attended Marist College and the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine in Blacksburg, VA. He came back to practice at McLean Animal Hospital upon graduation. He developed a special interest in imaging and now [...]

By | February 6th, 2018|Community|0 Comments

Do Your Cats Fight After Veterinary Visits? Hi, everybody. Happy Tuesday. We're back with Coffee Talk. My name is Dr. Erica Barron, and this is Ellen Carozza, our head LVT here at NOVA Cat Clinic. And today we're going to talk to you all about sibling issues or roommate issues because they're not always actually . Especially coming back from the vet's office, and one of them leaves the house, which is a major stressor, comes here, and then returns home. And then suddenly, your two cats aren't getting along anymore. Well, what do we do? Yeah, they smell different because remember, cats really care about the way things smell way more than we do. So we have to be careful when they start to smell different because they're like, "I don't know if I recognize you. You smell different." It's hard. It's hard. So one of my tricks - it doesn't work for everybody, but works for some people - is when you get home, you put a dab of vanilla extract on their heads and on the base of their tails. And then I feel like it resets a lot of them, and then they don't have this issue. I usually recommend that if you do have any type of sibling issues or roommate issues, or whatever you want to call your two cats, or three cats, or four cats, that when you bring one home and it hasn't been around everybody for a bit, then keep him in a separate room for a little bit just to kind of let him cool off. Maybe they didn't like it when they gave us blood today. Maybe they need to take five minutes and think about it and just calm [...]