Wellness Visits and Vaccinations
During your pets annual wellness visit, a thorough examination is done in conjunction with giving the appropriate vaccinations. The exam involves the Dr. checking your pets eyes, ears, mouth/teeth and rear ends for abnormalities such as discoloration and discharge. During the exam the Doctor will also palpate your pets stomach to see if anything is irregular.
Vaccinating your pet is a very important part of keeping your pet healthy. Many different types of vaccinations are available and we encourage you to speak to one of our Doctors about which ones are right for your pet.
While many boarding facilities and day-cares require your pet to have a myriad of vaccinations, the only vaccination required by the State of Maryland is the Rabies vaccine. It is also mandatory that a Veterinarian be the one to administer this vaccine where as the others can be administered by Veterinary Technicians, dependent on the protocols of Waugh Chapel Animal Hospital.
At WCAH, our Nationally Accredited Veterinarians have not only 30+ years of experience, but they also have the medical knowledge to work up, diagnose and support complex medical cases.
Surgical Procedures, Soft Tissue and Orthopedics
WCAH is well-equipped to perform both minor and major surgical procedures, from spays and neuters to more complicated emergency, orthopedic and soft tissue surgeries. Prior to surgery, your pet receives a thorough physical examination to assess their current health status. Because not all problems can be detected on examinations, we strongly recommend pre-anesthetic blood testing. On senior pets, this is a requirement for their safety. These tests not only give us a more complete picture of your pets health, but also allow us to tailor an anesthetic regimen that is specifically designed for your pet.
We offer a wide variety of anesthetic protocols tailored to your pet’s individual needs. We use state of the art anesthesia machines and utilize a variety of anesthetic monitoring devices. Pain management is a very important part of our pre and post-operative protocols. All surgical patients, including those undergoing routine procedures will receive pain control medication. It is against Dr. Andersen’s judgment to omit pain controlling medications and anti-biotics as a way to cut expenses of a surgical procedure.
Dr. Andersen performs all types of surgical procedures on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.
Quick link to Surgery Forms
Quick link to Surgery Policies
Having Radiology equipment onsite allows us to make treatment decisions for your pet in a more informed and efficient manner. With our skilled Technicians, we are able to make the process as quick and as stress free as possible for your pet.
In House Laboratory
Performing preventative medicine as well as diagnosing emerging internal health issues requires the ability to perform a wide range of laboratory tests on blood, urine and feces. Without timely access to precise laboratory results it is difficult to make an accurate diagnosis or assessment of your pet’s health. At WCAH we have some of the most cutting edge technology at our disposal to help us pin-point what is going on “behind the scenes” with your beloved pet. Blood testing can show evidence of disease such as diabetes, Lyme as well as feline aids and leukemia. It can show us changes in liver or kidney function as well as white and red blood cell count. Early blood testing while your pet is well can provide us with a baseline for future reference.
A Veterinary Ultrasound is a pain-free, totally non-invasive technique that uses high-frequency sound waves to produce a real-time image of your pet’s internal organs. It is particularly useful in viewing your pet’s abdominal organs including the spleen, kidneys, liver, and gallbladder. It can also be used to evaluate heart functions, bladder scans and other areas such as the thyroid glands, testicles and mammary glands.
Echo-cardiology is basically an ultrasound done of the heart. This method allows the Doctors to evaluate the anatomy and function of the heart and the associated large blood vessels.
Each of these tests are non- invasive and your pet will not need to be sedated. They work best when used in conjunction with other diagnostic tools such as blood work and/or x-rays. They are non-invasive and are typically not stressful to your pet
Believe it or not, dental hygiene is a very important part of your pet’s overall health and can often be the cause of serious illness. If left untreated, dental problems can lead to larger systemic issues in your pet due to oral bacteria entering the blood stream and damaging the kidneys, heart and liver.
At WCAH we use a modern and safe ultrasonic unit to clean each tooth thoroughly above and below the gum line. Your pet’s dental technician will polish the teeth to create a smooth, lustrous surface that is more resistant to future plaque buildup.
A Few Signs of Dental Disease include:
- Bad breath is one of the first signs of dental disease
- Decreased appetite or difficulty eating
- Red and/or swollen gums
- Pain and/or bleeding when your pet eats or when the mouth or gums are touched
- A yellowish-brown crust of plaque on the teeth near the gum line
- Loose or missing teeth
Veterinary dentistry is quite different from the equivalent process in people. For most of us, caring for our teeth and gums has been part of our daily routine for as long as we can remember. Consequently, a person’s visit to the dentist is relatively brief and does not require sedation. In contrast, Veterinary dentistry is considerably more involved, time-consuming and complex. Cleaning a pet’s teeth requires general anesthesia and consequently with that, a day’s hospitalization. The skills and involvement of many people are required for each dental procedure including the Veterinarian, the Veterinary Technicians and the Kennel Technicians.
Acupuncture is a practice from Ancient China that was originally used for people, but has been researched to be just as effective in veterinary medicine. Acupuncture uses incredibly small needles that go through the skin into the soft tissue and muscle tissue underneath. Most animals feel nothing during their sessions outside of the faintest of pokes. The needles are placed in specific locations across the body called acupressure points which are small collections of nerves, blood vessels and lymphatic vessels. The insertion of the needle stimulates these 3 tissues to promote healing, pain management and to control inflammation. Acupuncture has varying degrees of efficacy for each patient. This is usually evaluated after the first 3 sessions (each a week apart). If interested in learning more about acupuncture, please call our office to schedule an appointment with your pet and Dr. Josh McHarg, who performs all of our acupuncture sessions.
Laser Therapy is the practice of using red light and infrared light to affect the cells of the patient. Red light is visible light (electromagnetic radiation) with long wavelengths and low frequencies which penetrate through the skin down to the muscles and bones to affect the cells at every level. Infrared light is the electromagnetic radiation that comes right after the red light. The wavelength is so long the human eye can not actually see it. This light will penetrate deeper than the red light and has a stronger impact on the cells. Laser therapy can be used for surgical recovery, trauma, sprains, arthritis and other painful conditions. Unfortunately, patients with cancer typically are not candidates for laser therapy but each case is taken on an individual basis.