Making Pet Owner Education Something to Celebrate: Top Five Blogs of 2016

Whether it is the end of the year or any time of year, our aim is to encourage the best health possible for pets. One of the ways we do this is through pet owner education via our blog. And, we have really enjoyed writing about some of the most pressing and relevant issues our responsible pet parents seek.

As an emergency hospital, our focus on emergency preparedness and prevention is paramount to keeping companion animals safe. Why not make 2017 the best year yet for you and your pet! Make a commitment to optimal health and wellness – and have some fun while you’re at it, too (like dusting off your running shoes and your dog’s leash!).

Celebrating the New Year with Our Most Popular Pet Blogs of 2016


Pet Emergency: Creating the Essential Pet First Aid Kit

pet emergency kitAt Berks Animal Emergency and Referral Center, we believe every owner should have a pet first aid kit and know what to do during a pet emergency. While this doesn’t replace veterinary care, it can make a lifesaving difference.

As a pet guardian, you may already have some experience in this area. Although not all emergencies are life threatening, knowing the essentials of pet first is critical. To better equip yourself and be more prepared, we’ve compiled the following guide to assembling a proper pet first aid kit.

Determining What You Need

While there are a number of ready-made kits for purchase, these are typically standard kits for cats and dogs. It’s good to have the basics, but keep in mind that your pet may need other items. This is particularly true if you own an exotic pet or one with special needs.   Continue…

Pet Critical Care: Pet Paw Care in Extreme Weather

essential pet critical carePet owners hear a lot of warnings about the risk of heatstroke, but not much is said about the dangers that are literally underfoot. Asphalt, gravel, concrete, sand, wood, and metal absorb heat and remain hot for hours after sunset. Our own feet are protected from surface temperatures, so why wouldn’t we give delicate pet paws the same treatment? Pet paw care is important year round, and it remains a high priority this summer.

A Quick Glance

Your pet’s paws just help him or her get from point A to point B, right? While paws certainly help with logistics and mobility, dogs also employ their paw pads to help regulate body temperature. Younger animals especially are at a higher risk of injury since they have not yet built up any calluses from their day to day movements. Continue…

How to Prevent a Pet Poisoning Emergency

Sad catThere are few situations more frightening than a pet poisoning emergency. Unfortunately, hundreds of pets succumb to household and environmental toxins each year. In observance of National Poison Prevention Week, the team at Berks Animal Emergency & Referral Center wants to raise awareness about common home and garden products that can harm your pet.

Lawn and Garden Pet Toxins

With spring just around the corner, you may be looking to spruce up your yard, prep the garden beds, or clean out the shed. However, the products used to support your efforts can be hazardous to a curious fur friend. Continue…

Hyperthyroidism in Cats: A Common Kitty Foe

Cat with yellow eyes on the wallIt’s not an uncommon sight in the veterinary hospital: a middle aged to older kitty with a ravenous appetite and a diminishing waistline. While many of us may wish to have this problem, weight loss despite a good appetite in cats can definitely be a sign of trouble.

While there are a few problems that can present similarly, these symptoms are typical of hyperthyroidism in cats. This disease is a frequently diagnosed one that all cat owners should be familiar with. Continue…

A Slippery Slope: What You Can do About Cold Weather Pet Safety

dog ill or sleepingWe might be experiencing record high winter temperatures this year, but it’s only a matter of time until we get battered by a seasonally appropriate Nor’easter. Until then, all we can do is prepare – including your pet. Even if he or she is equipped with a thick winter coat, it’s important to review these cold weather pet safety measures.

Warm and Cozy

Your pet may be susceptible to frostbite and hypothermia in certain weather conditions, so keeping him or her warm is paramount. Noses, paw pads, and ears can actually freeze, resulting in permanent damage. Continue…

Recognizing the Early Warns Signs of Pet Diabetes

iStock_000014192263_Large (2)Type 2 diabetes or diabetes mellitus has become an epidemic in the United States, affecting millions of Americans. But, did you know that the incidents of pet diabetes is increasing at an alarming rate, with an estimated 1 in 200 dogs and 1 in 150 cats diagnosed with the disease?

Recent statistics show that pet obesity has become a major problem in this country, with more than 57% of cats considered overweight, and 55% of dogs. And, obesity coupled with a lack of exercise are two of the most significant indicators of risk of insulin resistant diabetes. Continue…

Veterinary Ophthalmology: The Wave of the Future

Berks_iStock_000036607386_Large (2)When you have a problem with your eyes or vision, it’s likely you just open the yellow pages for a list of doctors or specialists in your area. However, your pet’s vision and eye care isn’t always as easy or convenient.
The field of veterinary ophthalmology is highly specialized. Because the required residency and internships are so rigorous, there are only a few hundred board-certified specialists through the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmology. But what exactly can a veterinary ophthalmologist do for your pet? We’re so glad you asked! Continue…

Veterinary Referrals: What You Need to Know

Cat at veterinarianOver the years, you’ve come to know and trust your veterinarian, so it’s natural to be a little apprehensive when the word “referral” enters the conversation.

Referrals are becoming more and more common as we in the industry learn and make new discoveries. Veterinary medicine is evolving so quickly, it’s impossible for one veterinarian to be an expert in every field, so general veterinarians rely on referring patients to specialists to ensure your pet receives specific care. So, what do you need to know in case your pet is ever referred?

Why Veterinary Referrals are Important

A referral is the act of one veterinarian transferring the care of a patient to a different veterinarian. Many times, the new veterinarian is someone who has extra training or experience in a specific field of medicine. Continue…

Don’t Panic! Navigating Pancreatitis in Pets

Puppy on ottomanIn an emergency practice, one of the most common problems we are asked to address is the complaint of vomiting and diarrhea. Since the causes of vomiting and diarrhea are varied, questions about lifestyle, breed, and diet often come into play when we are working to diagnose the issue. Since our furry companions can’t speak for themselves, we rely heavily on owner’s information to provide clues to an underlying reason for the condition.

Pancreatitis is one of the culprits for the distressing signs of vomiting and diarrhea. In layman’s terms, Pancreatitis means inflammation of the pancreas. The job of the pancreas is to secrete enzymes to aid in digesting food. It is a small, pink organ located in the upper abdomen. Continue…