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Tis the Season for Pet Allergies!

If you suffer from seasonal allergies, you are probably preparing for the onslaught of itchiness, congestion and discomfort that the first days of spring seem to trigger. As much as we may love the smell of freshly cut grass and the sight of daffodils, it takes a toll on our bodies. But did you know that seasonal allergies can be an issue for our pets too?

If your dog or cat seems to be uncomfortable at this time of year, consider whether environmental or seasonal allergies could be to blame.

Here’s what to look for:

Food allergies in pets can cause similar symptoms to seasonal allergies, which can include hair loss, skin and ear infections, and even lesions. Itchiness can lead to self-trauma from chewing or scratching, and subsequently, your pet could develop sores. Hot spots and can also be linked to food allergies.

Starting with diagnostics can help to rule out other causes like mites, fungal infections or other medical conditions. It’s important to remember that seasonal allergies usually occur at certain times of the year, and can be caused by the same things as our human seasonal allergies, like pollen, grass, and even flea bites!

Not to worry, there are many ways to diagnose and treat allergies.

These include:

  • Allergy testing– a skin test done by introducing different allergens in a specific area of skin to see how your dog or cat’s body reacts.

Fatty acid supplements like Omega 3 fatty acids or fish oil can help build up the skin’s natural barrier and can help to reduce inflammation. These types of supplements can be helpful for all kinds of allergies and have many other positive effects on the body.

Antihistamines that people use can be given to dogs to help reduce symptoms of allergies such as itching. It is important to consult your vet before giving your dog over the counter drugs.

Steroids are also available in cases where itching and irritation are severe. Your vet may prescribe a steroid to quickly reduce itching. In the case where steroids are necessary, your vet will help you to become aware of other side effects. Be sure to follow a veterinarian’s advice when using these medications.

Controlling the exposure to the allergen itself is very important. Preventing your dog from having contact with known irritants can go a long way. Don’t walk in areas where you’ve experienced an allergic reaction, and try to avoid triggers for your pet. Your awareness can provide great relief for your pet!

Many people don’t know that it’s very common for dogs and cats to have an allergy to fleas. One flea bite can cause severe itching and discomfort in pets. It can result in a terrible allergic reaction, so keeping your pet protected from fleas is critical. Talk to your vet about the many options for flea control.

Getting to the bottom of your pet’s allergies can be a long and tricky process. Seek help from your vet and don’t give up! Happy Spring!

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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Last updated: March 30, 2021

Dear Clients,

With recent changes to restrictions on businesses, we are pleased to advise that effective May 25, 2020 the restrictions on veterinary practices have been lifted. Based on these changes, below are some important updates to our operating policies.

1. WE CAN NOW SEE ALL CASES BY APPOINTMENT ONLY

This includes vaccines, wellness exams, blood work, spays and neuters, dental services, and more!

As you can imagine, we have a significant backlog of surgeries and wellness/vaccine exams to catch up on and we will be working hard over the next several weeks to do just that. We want to thank everyone in advance for your patience while we work through this. Although restrictions have been lifted, our health and safety protocols have not. It is important we continue to follow the guidelines set out by Worksafe BC and social distance our large team as much as possible. This means although we can offer these elective services, we are doing much fewer during the day then we were pre-COVID.

2. SAFETY MEASURES TO KEEP EVERYONE SAFE

We are very excited to welcome you back into our lobby! We have put some important safety measures in place to help keep our clients and our team safe.

3. ONLINE ORDERS

The use of our online store for easy ordering, payment and delivery of our pet's food, flea and tick medications. Orders over $100 can be delivered to your home for free! CLICK HERE

4. OPERATING HOURS

During the first 8 weeks of COVID, we were operating as a 24-hour facility to better serve our community and to maintain social distancing within our team. However, as the COVID-19 situation changes, so do we!

Our team of doctors felt it was important to get back to performing your pet's much needed regular services. In order to do so safely, we had to once again change the way we do business. 

As such, effective October 6, 2020, we will no longer be available for after-hours, on call services between midnight and 7:00 am. After-hours emergency care will be referred to Central Island Veterinary Emergency Hospital between the hours of midnight - 7:00 am. They can be reached at 250-933-0913.

We will continue to be available until midnight for your call-in, after hours needs.

Our regular hours of operation remain the same:

Monday - Friday: 8:00 am - 8:00 pm

Saturday & Sunday: 8:00 am - 4:30 pm

Thank you for your patience and understanding, and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

- Your dedicated team at Van Isle Veterinary Hospital