We remain open to provide care for your pets. We are following the direction of government and regulatory authorities and have implemented hospital and visit protocols to keep both you and our team safe. For regular updates on our hours and visit protocols, please follow our social media platforms.

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Foot Care for a Healthy Dog

At this time of year, we hear from a lot of our clients about pets with sore feet. It’s a little-known reality that with the good weather, comes outdoor activity, dryer terrain, harder ground, beach romping, and the injuries that can go with those things. Broken toe-nails and cut pads and paws can become a real nightmare for both the pet and owner, so this month we thought we’d focus a little bit on how to care for your pet’s paws.

Nail Care
One of the first things your veterinarian will tell you when you get a new pup is “Handle Those Feet!” The more you make feet just another part of your dog’s body, the more he/she will become comfortable with having those feet cared for. It can be one of the most important things you can do for your pet! Did you know that a high number of dogs (I’d say, probably 50% or more) have real anxiety when it comes to having their feet touched? Dogs who are otherwise calm and friendly can become fearful and aggressive if they are touched on or around the paws. To help your dog avoid this kind of stress, spend some time brushing, and massaging the paws of your dog. If you start early, you may become comfortable trimming your dog’s nails also. You can purchase a pair of safe nail trimmers at your veterinarian or at a pet store. When your dog is a pup, trimming the tips of the toenails is all that is necessary, and it is great to familiarize your dog with the process.

Your dog needs a nail trim when the nails start to show curvature, and should only be trimmed to the quick, never farther back, as this can be painful and will bleed. Be careful, and if you would be more comfortable having a professional trim your dog’s nails, you can book them in for this at your veterinarian, a groomer, and at some pet stores.

Failing to trim your dog’s nails can lead to the nails growing into the pads themselves in some extreme cases and can be very painful for your dog.

Paws and Pads
Do you remember cutting your foot on a barnacle at the beach as a child? It hurts! Many of us have had a similar situation with our pets. Especially in the summer months, frequent trips to our local shores are such a welcome thing, and if you have a dog like mine, they probably live to chase sticks at the beach. Most dogs, however, don’t know when to slow down and will run long after sustaining an injury to one of their paws. If you find that your dog has cut his or her pad, here are some things to do:

  1. Identify on which foot the injury has occurred and make sure you don’t allow the dog to lick! Licking and chewing introduce bacteria and does more damage to the area. Put a cone on your pet, or a sock on that foot, or both!
  2. DON’T apply a restrictive bandage without the advice of a veterinary professional. Some bandages can cut off blood supply to the affected area, and can again, cause more damage.
  3. Soak it! Soaking an injured paw in a solution of Epsom salts and warm, clean water will help heal the area. A good practice is to soak the foot up to three times a day, for up to 10 minutes a time, and dry with a clean towel after soaking.
  4. See your vet! Every case is different; some paws need stitches, some need a bandage. If your dog has a sore paw, let the vet do the diagnostics!
  5. Be prepared! Carry some first aid material with you so that if you find yourself in a situation, you can help stop bleeding, and keep the injury clean until you can get some help.
  6. Consider boots! You can order a wide arrangement of helpful footwear for your pup if you find that sore paws are becoming an issue. Check out amazon or your local pet stores for some options!

When heading out for some fun this summer, consider your dog’s feet. Take the trail less travelled and opt for the grass or soft sand instead of gravel or rocky shores. Your pup will thank you for it!

If you have any questions, give us a call at 250.334.8400.

Written by: Van Isle Veterinary Hospital

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Get a Cupcake and Support BC Animals in Need During Treat Week (Feb 24 - Mar 1, 2020)

Van Isle Veterinary Hospital is super excited to be hosting our 4th annual cupcake day fundraiser! BCSPCA celebrates “Treat Week” across the Province from Feb 24th – March 1st 2020 where business, pet owners and animal lovers can bake up a storm and sell treats with the proceeds going to BC animals in need.

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COVID-19: Additional measures we are taking

Dear Clients,

Due to the close contact that our work requires, we have taken additional measures to protect you and our team while providing care for your furry family members.

The following changes are effective as of Friday, March 19, 2020:

1. We are currently operating a “closed waiting room” policy to protect our clients and staff. When you arrive, please remain in your vehicle and use your cell phone to call us at 250.334.8400. We will take a history of your pet from outside your car, and bring your pet into the clinic for an examination with the veterinarian. Once the examination is finished, the Doctor will either call you or come out to talk to you to discuss the treatment etc for your pet. For those who do not have a mobile phone, an easy knock at the door will work the same way!

2. We are continuing to accept appointments for urgent or sick pets, as well as time-sensitive puppy/kitten vaccinations. All other services will be scheduled for a later time.

3. We are OPEN and temporarily operating as a 24-hour hospital.

4. If you are ordering food or medications, please allow 2-4 business days as our suppliers are dealing with increased demand and are trying to fill orders as quickly as possible. We will advise you as soon as your order arrives. Please call us when you arrive to pick up your order, but do not enter the hospital. Our staff will bring your order to your car and take payment over the phone. You can also use our online store and have your food delivered directly to your home. To sign up for the Online Store, visit our website.

5. For the time being, we are not accepting cash as payment. Credit cards and debit card payments are still available.

6. Online consultations are now available! If you wish to connect with a veterinarian via message, phone or video, visit our website and follow the "Online Consultation" link.

Following the recommendations of our government and medical experts, we are doing our best to practice social distancing within the constraints of our roles. As such, we have taken measures to avoid both contracting and facilitating the spread of this virus.

Thank you for helping us be diligent for everyone's safety. As we have heard from all levels of government, the situation is fluid and any updates will be provided as changes occur.

- Your dedicated team at Van Isle Veterinary Hospital