206.323.4433 2115 - 23rd Ave. S, Seattle, WA 98144

How to Protect Your Pet from Heartworm Disease

How to Protect Your Pet from Heartworm Disease | AtlanticVetSeattle.com

Two of our dog patients recently tested positive for heartworm disease. That’s the first time we’ve seen this in over 10 years, so we wanted to provide you with some important information about what to watch for in your dog or cat.

What is heartworm disease?

Heartworm disease is caused by a parasitic roundworm that lives inside the heart and blood vessels of a dog or cat’s lungs. While the disease is preventable, hundreds of thousands of cats and dogs are infected every year.

How is heartworm disease transmitted?

Heartworm disease is transmitted by mosquitoes and is found in every state, every climate, and every season. During the winter months, mosquitoes hang out in warm environments such as garages and greenhouses, which means that pet parents must take prevention seriously year-round.

High-risk cities for heartworm disease

According to the Companion Animal Parasite Council (CAPC) the 10 metro areas across the United States that experienced the biggest increase in canine heartworm disease during February 2019 are:

  1. Salt Lake City, UT
  2. Alexandria, VA
  3. Riverside, CA
  4. Topeka, KS
  5. El Paso, TX
  6. Paterson, NJ
  7. Chesapeake, VA
  8. Reno, NV
  9. Modesto, CA
  10. Boise, ID

Notice the prevalence of western states mentioned: Two in California, plus Idaho and Nevada. Heartworm risk has now arrived in Seattle, too.

Bad news, good news

The bad news is that early signs of heartworm disease are generally unnoticeable or invisible. Your pet could appear 100% healthy while the parasites are quietly making themselves right at home. Left untreated, heartworm disease can be debilitating and even fatal.

The good news is that protection is simple: Get your pet tested every year, and administer a heartworm preventive year-round.

How to Protect Your Cat from Heartworm Disease | AtlanticVetSeattle.com

Heartworm in cats

Cats are less susceptible to heartworm disease than dogs, but even indoor cats can get infected. The feline version of heartworm disease is different than the canine version. One or two worms feeding on a cat’s lungs can send a cat’s immune system into overdrive, causing inflammation of the lungs and respiratory distress.

Not all cats with heartworm disease show symptoms, but common symptoms include rapid or labored breathing, coughing, decreased appetite, weight loss, and lethargy.

Unfortunately, heartworm disease in cats is lethal and cannot be treated, so prevention is the only means of protecting cats. It’s important to have your cat screened for heartworm disease, and to start your feline on a preventive no later than 8 weeks of age.

Heartworm in dogs

A single bite from an infected mosquito can infect your dog. In dogs, the disease usually attacks the heart and lungs. Adult heartworms can grow to over a foot in length, wreaking devastation on a dog’s circulatory system.

It’s extremely important to have your dog screened for heartworm disease, and to start your puppy on a preventive no later than 8 weeks of age (Heartworm Society)

If your pet is due for a heartworm screening, needs a preventive, or you’re concerned about the possibility of heartworm disease, call us at 206-323-4433.

Sources:

Heartwormsociety.org

10 Things You Need to Know About Heartworm and Your Dog (Pet Health Network)

Five Things You Need to Know About Heartworm Disease and Your Cat (Pet Health Network)

Companion Animal Parasite Council (CAPC)

15 Tips for Socializing Your Puppy

Pandemic Puppies: 15 Tips for Socializing Your Puppy in a Socially Distant World | atlanticvetseattle.com

Think about all the ways a child learns to socialize with others from birth through the middle school years.

Now think about a puppy. One month of a puppy’s life is equivalent to approximately one year of a human child’s life. That’s why it’s critical to prepare your puppy to interact with people, other animals, and new situations when they are 8-to-14 weeks old.

Pandemic Puppies: 15 Tips for Socializing Your Puppy in a Socially Distant World | atlanticvetseattle.com

We can successfully help our pups learn socialization skills. We just have to be intentional about it. Similar to homeschooling our human children, we need to homeschool our puppies.

Think of it as “puppy pre-school.”

Here are 15 fun and easy ways you can socialize your puppy during that critical age of 8-to-14 weeks, to help them develop into a happy, confident, well-mannered dog.

Sight experiences

With face masks still being worn by many, it’s important to get your pup accustomed to seeing humans wearing masks. Inside your home, put on your mask, praise and treat your puppy, and then take off your mask. Repeat until your puppy is unfazed by face coverings.

In addition to practicing with face masks, train your puppy to interact with a “stranger” by wearing different hats, gloves, sunglasses, and clothing in the house and yard (do these things one at a time, not all in one day!).

Sound experiences

Pandemic Puppies: 15 Tips for Socializing Your Puppy in a Socially Distant World | atlanticvetseattle.com

You want your puppy to remain calm when out in busy, loud public places where sudden sounds are likely to occur. Gradually expose your puppy to a variety of everyday sounds:

  • phone ringtones
  • electronic devices
  • hair dryer
  • vacuum cleaner
  • pots and pans clanking
  • shower or bathtub (running water)
  • microwave
  • radio and TV
  • various forms of music
  • doors opening and shutting
  • doorbell
  • garbage trucks
  • traffic sounds

Watch for signs of stress, and make each new noise exposure experience as positive as possible by rewarding your pup with a treat and acting calm and happy around the sound.

Tactile experiences

Pandemic Puppies: 15 Tips for Socializing Your Puppy in a Socially Distant World | atlanticvetseattle.com

Expose your puppy to a new tactile experience each day by introducing them to a variety of surfaces. Never force your puppy to step on these surfaces – allow them to take their time approaching and stepping on new surfaces, and reassure and reward them often.

  • Concrete
  • Linoleum
  • Hardwood
  • Dirt
  • Sand
  • Carpet
  • Rubberized doormats
  • Grass
  • Leaves
  • Mud

Of course, go for a walk in the rain so your pup gets accustomed to walking on wet surfaces.

Set up a simple “obstacle course” and encourage your puppy to walk over, under, and around objects with different textures, such as a pillow, cookie sheet, cardboard box, or skateboard.

Video

This video includes practical tips for creating fun socializing events.

Experiences with humans

To help your puppy get used to meeting new people, try these strategies:

  • If you live with others, encourage every member of your household to spend one-on-one time cuddling, feeding, grooming, and playing with your puppy.
  • Prepare your puppy for the different ways people will pet them. Pat them on the head. Scratch under their chin. Pet them against the grain of their fur, praising as you pet. If your puppy gets anxious, stop and try again later.
  • Go for regular, short car rides to get your puppy used to traveling in a car.
  • Drive to a local strip mall and sit in the parking lot. Give your puppy treats as you watch the action.
  • Walk them around in the parking lot or on a sidewalk. When someone approaches, praise and give your puppy a treat until that person passes.
  • Briefly stop and talk with others, while maintaining a safe distance from each other.

Experiences with animals

After two years of social distancing, we all know what that means for humans. Practicing social distancing when encountering other dogs is also ideal for your puppy, because you don’t want your pup to have a close encounter with an aggressive dog.

When you take your puppy for a walk and they spot another dog and want to stop and watch that dog walk by, let them. This helps your puppy understand that seeing other dogs is normal.

Practice walking past dogs in fenced yards who bark or run along with you. Watch your puppy’s reaction. Reassure your puppy and give them bits of food to reinforce appropriate behavior.

If there are dogs in your neighborhood that you trust to be well-mannered with your puppy, arrange short, positive doggy play dates while maintaining a safe distance from the other owner.

Alone Time

Pandemic Puppies: 15 Tips for Socializing Your Puppy in a Socially Distant World | atlanticvetseattle.com

Learning to be without people around is as important as learning to be with them. While you may be working from home now, if you anticipate returning to a job outside the home, it’s important to create structured alone-time by crate training your puppy.

To help your puppy feel safe and less anxiety when you’re away, get an appropriately sized crate or set up a gated area (here’s a helpful article on how to crate train your dog in 9 easy steps).

Put your puppy in their crate or other safe area for a total of at least 2-4 hours a day. During that time, you and other household members should be in another part of the house.

Snuggle time

Most puppies love to be held, petted, and snuggled. Get your dog used to different types of handling by gently touching and examining their paws, nails, eyes, ears, mouth and tail several times each week (this will prepare them to visit the vet, too!).

Groom your puppy with a dog brush for 3-to-5 minutes per day.

Petting your puppy not only helps them feel more bonded to you, but it’s good therapy for you, too!

Routine

Puppies, like humans, thrive on routine. Make sure that your puppy eats, plays, and naps around the same time each day. These routines will prepare your puppy to face the world with confidence.

Dental Checkups and X-Rays: An Important Routine to Keep Your Pet’s Teeth Healthy

Dental check-ups and routine dental X-rays are necessary for a healthy mouth and to ensure your pet’s teeth are picture-perfect for a lifetime.

During physical exams, we take a look in your pet’s mouth. However, a visual examination of your pet’s mouth doesn’t tell us everything we need to know.

Tartar on a dog's tooth | Atlantic Veterinary Hospital, Seattle

More than half of each tooth resides under the gumline, where the human eye can’t see.

What we do see is the exterior of the tooth crowns, but we can’t see the tooth roots, dental ligaments, or jaw bone. This is why full-mouth dental X-rays are such an important part of your pet’s dental care and a service we perform with every anesthetic dental procedure.

While it may be tempting due to cost to skip dental X-rays, in order to provide thorough care, we consider them a necessary step in evaluating your pet’s dental health and developing a dental treatment plan.

Advantages of Dental X-rays

Dental X-Ray of a dog's mouth | AtlanticVetSeattle.comDental X-rays, also known as radiographs, can detect oral health problems at their earliest stages, such as gum disease, bone loss, oral infections, and some types of tumors. After examining your pet’s mouth under anesthesia and reviewing the X-rays, we can accurately diagnose and treat dental problems.

Because dental X-ray machines are designed to minimize radiation, these processes are safe and your pet’s exposure is negligible. In fact, we use the very latest digital X-rays, which further reduce radiation exposure and significantly improve the quality of the picture for the veterinarian to review.

Wellness Plans Make Routine Dental Healthcare Affordable

Atlantic Veterinary Hospital’s Wellness Plans are a program we designed to save you money on important preventive healthcare services for your furry family members.

Each Wellness Plan provides all essential preventive healthcare services we recommend for one year, plus discounts on any additional care your pet may need. Some of our plans include additional services like a professional dental cleaning and full-mouth digital dental radiographs.

Wellness Plan costs have some built-in discounts and spread the cost of care over 12 months with zero interest, allowing you to budget for your pet’s care. If you’d like to learn more about our affordable wellness plans, give us a call at 206.323.4433.

Why is My Cat Suddenly Sneezing So Much?

When your cat sneezes, she is releasing high-pressure air from her nose and mouth.

Why is My Cat Suddenly Sneezing So Much? | atlanticvetseattle.com

A few sneezes a day is fairly normal, but when kitty sneezes consistently over a period of days, you may want to bring her to visit us, as she could have an upper respiratory infection.

Causes of Sneezing

While most sneezing in cats is caused by a viral infection, other causes for sneezing could be:

  • bacterial
  • fungal
  • allergies
  • foreign body (see our article on Foxtails — those evil things are everywhere again this year!)
  • benign polyp
  • cancerous growth
  • tooth root abscess

When to Call Us

Give us a call at 206.323.4433 if you notice these other symptoms along with sneezing:

  • Runny eyes
  • Squinting
  • Nasal discharge (clear or yellow)
  • Swelling around the nose or a misshapen nose
  • Lethargy
  • Difficulty chewing food
  • Drooling
  • Bloody discharge from the nose
  • Inappetance/anorexia
  • Pink eye signs
  • Ulcers in the mouth
  • Noisy  breathing or increased difficulty breathing
  • Dehydration
  • Fever
  • Weight loss

We’ll give your cat a thorough exam and may run some tests to confirm the type of infection.  If treatment is needed, we’ll recommend a course of action.

‘Senior Cat’ Q and A with Dr. Laura Monahan

How to keep your cat’s golden years golden

senior cat wearing bow tie

Q: At what age is a cat classified as a senior?

A: Keeping in mind that every cat is an individual, the “senior” status in cats has been described as cats 11-14 years of age (American Association of Feline Practitioners and American Animal Hospital Association in their Feline Life Stage Guidelines).

Cats aged 7-10 are called “mature” and those 14 and older, “geriatric.”

Since aging changes are frequently a progressive continuum, many veterinarians group all three together and call them “senior.”

Senior at Seven is an easily remembered phrase.

Q: What vaccinations, examinations, or procedures are necessary for older cats?

A: As health conditions can change rapidly in older cats, a thorough physical examination is best performed on all “healthy” senior cats twice yearly. That exam also should also include oral health and mobility assessments.

We will make preventive health recommendations according to a cat’s lifestyle and health status. Our recommendations may include:

  • Twice yearly thorough physical exam, including oral health and mobility assessments.
  • Intestinal parasite screening, at least once a year.
  • Vaccines tailored to your pet’s lifestyle, health & environment. Decisions regarding which vaccinations are appropriate are dependent on a cat’s risk factors, including disease prevalence and indoor/outdoor status.
  • Comprehensive parasite preventive (internal and external).
  • Blood pressure screening and Senior laboratory assessment.
  • Senior cat nutrition.

The senior wellness profile in our practice is consistent with the published AAFP-AAHA guidelines and includes a the following tests as a baseline:

  • Complete blood cell count
  • Chemistry profile
  • Thyroid test
  • Urinalysis
  • Blood pressure

Establishing a baseline for a healthy senior kitty allows us to follow trends throughout their golden years. Other procedures may be indicated depending on the findings of the examination.

Q: How can owners be on the lookout for signs of common conditions in senior cats?

A: Knowing what a cat’s normal behavior has been and then reporting to us any changes in that behavior is crucial. Behavior patterns like appetite, elimination, activity and sleep patterns are the keys to early identification of underlying problem.

Besides the common conditions associated with aging cats, such as chronic kidney disease, hyperthyroidism, periodontal and other oral disease, we are now recognizing much more arthritis in cats than ever before.

Q: How can veterinarians communicate to clients the importance of preventive care?

A: The adage, “an ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure” is far better for your cat, your peace of mind, and even your wallet. We’d like to assist you in preventing parasites like roundworms, fleas, and heartworms in your cat; common infectious diseases like upper respiratory infection and feline leukemia virus; as well as other conditions like painful dental disease, arthritis, and diabetes.

Learn more about wellness care for your senior cat.

5 Reasons to Test Your Cat for Diabetes

One of our least favorite diagnoses to make in cats is Type II diabetes. Feline diabetes is largely preventable and unnecessary. And, diabetes can be a real challenge to treat for many cat owners.

Fortunately, Type II diabetes in cats is also one of those diseases that benefits from early detection and treatment.

5 Reasons to Test Your Cat for Diabetes | AtlanticVetSeattle.com

Why test your cat for diabetes?

1. Diagnosed Early, It May Be Reversible.

One of the most interesting aspects of feline diabetes is its potential reversibility or remission, especially when diagnosed in the earliest stages.

Research has shown up to 60% of cats will experience diabetic remission within the first few months of treatment.

Combining strict blood sugar regulation with precise insulin therapy, diet changes, and weight loss are a recipe for reversing diabetes in many cats. Some cats will remain diabetes-free for many months to years.

We recommend scheduling blood tests and a urinalysis for your adult cat at least once a year, twice a year for chubby kitties.

2. It’s More Than High Blood Sugar.

Many cat owners focus solely on blood sugar levels. Too often, we forget about the continuous and severe damage that high sugar levels (called hyperglycemia) cause throughout a cat’s body.

The longer diabetes goes untreated, the more potentially irreversible the damage may be. Prolonged high blood sugar levels cause painful diabetic neuropathy and weakness in diabetic cats’ hind legs. They can also contribute to chronic infections and loss of lean muscle mass.

Untreated diabetes can cause life-threatening emergency conditions such as hepatic lipidosis (fatty liver) and diabetic ketoacidosis, which require hospitalized care and may cause death.

3. Diabetes May Cause Inappropriate Urination.

Cats that urinate outside the litter box can do so for a variety of reasons, some medical and some behavioral.

Often, the first change owners notice in a diabetic cat is inappropriate urination. As blood sugars rise, the sugars start “spilling” into the urine as a cat’s body attempts to rid itself of the toxic sugar. This creates thirst and increased water consumption, which in turn creates excess urine.

Urinalysis is an important screening tool we use to help diagnose diabetes and differentiate it from other conditions that may cause a cat to miss the litter box.

4. The Risk of Excess Body Fat.

Fat cats are at a much higher risk of developing diabetes than lean cats. Diabetes is a disease commonly created in a cat’s food bowl.

If your cat is chubby or obese, have him screened for diabetes twice a year with blood and urine tests.

The great news is that when diagnosed early and weight loss programs are implemented, many cats will undergo diabetic remission.

5. Longer, Better Life.

The real reason to test your cat early and often for diabetes is to prolong a high quality of life.

The American Association of Feline Practitioners warns that the number of cats diagnosed with diabetes is increasing.

Don’t delay calling us if your cat is losing weight, having accidents in the house, has a change in eating habits (up or down), or unexpectedly loses weight.

You can reach Atlantic Veterinary Hospital by calling 206.323.4433.

The Benefits of Pet Health Insurance (And Who We Recommend)

Our hearts break when pets are euthanized because their owners can’t afford critical care. Unfortunately it happens… more often than you might imagine.

Many people vastly underestimate the costs of caring for a pet over a 15-year lifespan. Dog owners typically spend from $20,000 to $55,000, and cat owners spend $15,000 to $45,000, according to a new study by Synchrony.

That averages out to $111-$306 per month for dog owners, and $84-$254 per month for cat owners.

Even a basic level of pet care can run into thousands of dollars over the course of a year. During the first year alone, dog owners can expect to spend from $1,300 to $2,800. Cat owners can expect to spend approximately $960 to $2,500.

In addition to basic expenses such as food, vaccinations, grooming, and toys, one out of three pet owners will face an unexpected pet expense that causes financial worry.

61% of Americans don’t have enough savings to cover a $1,000 pet emergency.

Cats and dogs love to explore things we don’t want them to explore and eat random objects, which can easily cause an unplanned injury or illness. An unexpected visit to the veterinarian can often run anywhere from $800 to $1,500, with major medical treatment costing $10,000 or more.

Since 1 in 3 pets in the U.S. need emergency veterinary treatment in any given year, it’s likely your pet will face at least one significant accident or illness during their lifetime.

That’s why we advocate for pet health insurance. To put it bluntly, pet insurance from a reputable company can help save pets’ lives.

When to Insure Your Pet

We recommend enrolling your fur baby in pet insurance when they’re just that – a healthy baby.

Pet insurance plans rarely cover “pre-existing conditions” (conditions that showed symptoms or were treated before enrolling or during the waiting period). By enrolling your pet when they’re young, you’ll be better financially prepared to cover unexpected accidents and illnesses.

Some pets inherit health conditions, and many breeds are prone to developing specific conditions that require lifelong monitoring and treatment.

Enrolling in an insurance plan when your pet is a baby will ensure your pet is likely covered for the course of treatment your vet recommends.

Wellness Plans vs Pet Insurance

Understanding the difference between wellness plans and pet insurance is important.

Wellness plans are for preventive care.

Many are tied to the veterinary hospital from which you purchase the plan. Wellness plans spread the cost of routine preventive care over 12 months. They often include modest perks such as discounts, free nail trims, etc., making routine care a line item in a family budget.

Atlantic Veterinary Hospital offers wellness plans for kittens and puppies and adult cats and dogs.

Pet insurance picks up where wellness plans leave off. While wellness plans are for preventive care, insurance is for unplanned illness or accidents. We suggest that pet parents invest in both.

How to Choose a Pet Insurance Company

There are many pet insurance companies, many contradictory reviews floating around cyberspace, and many “sponsored links” from insurance companies who all claim to be #1.

Rather than getting sucked into the black hole of comparing umpteen companies, we suggest that you choose a plan based on the recommendation of someone you know and trust.

pumpkin pet insurance

We’ve had a good experience with Pumpkin’s pet insurance plans, which can be found at pumpkin.pet. This inclusive plan covers the gold-standard therapy for covered conditions that we offer in our practice.

Plus, Pumpkin pet insurance plans can be used at any licensed veterinary practice in the US and Canada.

To see how Pumpkin stands out among several other pet insurance providers, run your own comparison here.

How Payment and Reimbursement Works

Pet insurance is similar to personal health insurance, where you pay a premium towards your pet’s covered vet expenses each year, regardless of whether your pet needs medical treatment.

For example, if you pay a $100 per year deductible, after that $100 is applied to an insurance-covered veterinary bill for an unplanned illness or accident, a certain percentage of additional covered costs are reimbursed by your pet insurance company.

Simplified:

  1. You pay your full bill at the vet.
  2. You submit your invoice to your pet insurance company.
  3. The insurance company reimburses you a percentage of additional covered costs.

Two of the Best Ways to Love Your Pet:

  1. Budget for their routine medical care.
  2. Be prepared for the unexpected.

When you thoughtfully plan for both, you’ll have peace of mind, knowing that your furry family member will receive the care it needs.

Sources

Lifetime of Care Study

Prrs&Wags blog, Dr. Stacy Choczynski Johnson, “8 Reasons Why The Right Time to Get Pet Insurance is Right Now

DVM360.com, “Synchrony study unveils staggering findings surrounding lifetime cost of pet ownership

Business Insider, Eric Rosenberg, “The Best Pet Insurance Companies for Your Beloved Cats, Dogs, and More

The Washington Post, Jeff Blyskal, “Is Pet Insurance Worth It?

Why Pet Surgery Costs What It Does

When it comes to surgical procedures, your pet’s comfort and safety is our utmost concern, and we don’t cut corners.

High Standards of Care

We strive to provide the level of care, service, and medically-trained, licensed staff we would want for our own pets or children. There are standards of care we will not breach to make a procedure less expensive. If needed, we may provide payment plans for established clients to spread out the cost of a procedure.

Why Pet Surgery Costs What It Does | AtlanticVetSeattle.com

Individualized Care for Your Pet

To provide your pet with individualized care, our surgeries and dental procedures are scheduled, planned, and performed individually, not as an assembly line.

Customized Anesthetic Plan

Before we begin a procedure, we provide a courtesy pre-anesthetic doctor exam (a $63 value) where the doctor assesses your pet’s current health status and writes an individualized anesthetic and pain management plan.

For maximum safety and comfort, we customize the plan for each pet, taking into account the pet’s age and health status, as well as the type, duration and severity of pain that may accompany a procedure.

Pain Management Plan

We provide a multi-modal pain management to deliver consistent, reliable comfort using different classes of drugs that work together to provide pain management at lower, safer doses.

A typical multi-modal pain management plan may include:

  • pain injections before, during, and after the procedure for extra comfort
  • gas anesthesia and oxygen (via endotracheal tube for airway protection)
  • acupuncture to improve anesthesia
  • local anesthesia at the site of the incision or dental extractions
  • a dermal patch providing round-the-clock pain medication for three days after the procedure
  • oral pain medications to be given at home during the healing period

Pre-Anesthetic Laboratory Screening

For the safety of your pet and to assist in planning the procedure, we require pre-anesthetic laboratory screening within 30 days of a procedure to assess your pet’s internal organ functions.

We have negotiated with our reference lab to offer a mini panel (sufficient for most, but not all pets) at the lowest possible price. Lab screening also serves as wellness screening for your pet, setting an individualized baseline to which we can compare any future lab results.

General Anesthetic Best Practices

During all general anesthetic procedures, we place an IV catheter and provide intravenous fluids at a rate individually calculated for each pet, providing support to your pet’s cardiovascular system and kidneys. The catheter also provides immediate intravenous access in case of emergency.

Dedicated Surgical Veterinary Nurse

A separate trained and experienced veterinary nurse is dedicated to your pet to monitor anesthesia and vital signs throughout the entire procedure and recovery period. The technician carefully and continuously assesses blood pressure, oxygen saturation, pulse rate, respiration, tissue perfusion, comfort level, and body temperature.

Monitoring is accomplished through subjective methods (e.g., clinical appearance) and objective methods (e.g., electronic systems).

In anesthesia, seconds count. Immediately recognizing and responding to a change in patient parameters provides better patient outcomes, reduces stress during the procedure, and may help minimize overall procedure time.

Some clinics expect the person performing the procedure to also monitor anesthesia, but having a separate person solely responsible for anesthesia increases safety.

Sterile Surgical Suite

Our doctors perform surgery in a separate, sterile surgical suite and are capped, masked, gloved, and gowned. The anesthetic nurse is also capped and masked. Some clinics do not insist upon this level of sterility.

Courtesy Grooming Services

We provide courtesy grooming services while your pet is under anesthesia, including a nail trim and anal gland express (a $50 value) – two procedures many pets aren’t too enthused about while awake.

Padded E-Collar

We budget for and encourage the use of an Elizabethan collar (e-collar) for many surgeries to help keep your pet from licking his/her incision, causing self-trauma, infection, and pain. We have new padded collars that are more comfortable and better accepted by pets.

Discharge Appointment

We write individualized home care instructions, taking the time at your discharge appointment to review them with you and answer any questions you may have before your pet goes home.

Courtesy Re-Evaluation Exam and Suture Removal

We provide a courtesy re-evaluation exam (a $45 value) with the doctor within 7 days to check your pet’s healing progress. We also provide a courtesy suture removal appointment, if necessary, 10-14 days after a procedure.

All-Encompassing Cost Estimates

No one likes unwelcome surprises or tense conversations, so we try to provide an all-encompassing, “soup to nuts” treatment plan and cost estimate. We attempt to anticipate all costs associated with a procedure, while maintaining our standard of care (and providing courtesy services we think you’ll appreciate).

Cost Estimates for Non-Elective Procedures

With non-elective procedures, we may provide a cost range to attempt to encompass unknowns, and we’ll call you during the procedure if additional unknowns arise.

When asked for a cost quote, we don’t just quote for the procedure, as some clinics do, then surprise you with the cost of take-home medications, supplies, and recheck appointments that add to the total. We provide that information right up front. And we don’t cut corners.

Want Pet Food, Flea Preventives, & Medications Delivered to Your Home?

Life is busy! And Seattle traffic is no joke.

Would you prefer the convenience of home delivery of your pet’s heartworm medications and other medications, flea preventive, or prescription food, instead of picking them up at our office?

Pet Food, Flea Preventives, & Medications Delivered to Your Home | AtlanticVetSeattle.com

Online Pharmacy and Pet Grocery

Our online pharmacy and pet grocery makes it easy to have what you need delivered right to your front door. And unlike other online pet suppliers, choosing this option helps keep your dollars in our local economy.

Additionally, pet food and medication guarantees are only honored by their manufacturers when products are purchased through a veterinary clinic.

Want Pet Food, Flea Preventives & Medications Delivered to Your Home?

Free Shipping on Orders Over $49

Our prices are competitive and shipping is free on most orders over $49. Save even more if you choose the autoship option.

Rebates!

We often have rebate coupons to share that are only available through a veterinary clinic.  Click here to learn more.

3 Tips for a Successful Curbside or Virtual Veterinary Visit

How to Have a Successful Curbside or Virtual Veterinary Visit | atlanticvetseattle.com

Imagine driving 100 mph on a curvy racetrack with no guard rails – all day, every day, for over a year – while trying to keep a smile on your face and avoid a fiery crash.

That’s how health care workers – including veterinary staff – feel. Veterinary clinics nationwide have experienced a surge in demand as stay-at-home families adopt pets. While that’s a wonderful thing for animal shelters (many shelter pets have found forever homes), from a health care perspective, we’re seeing:

Increased emergency visits.

Emergency veterinary clinics nationwide are typically backed up 6-to-12 hours and are often forced to turn patients away.

Clinics such as Atlantic Veterinary Hospital are taking in more emergencies daily, because we no longer have the option of referring critical patients to emergency clinics.

Pet emergencies are time-consuming, and because emergencies require immediate attention, well-pet appointments sometimes have to be rescheduled.

Increased wait times to schedule appointments and increased time for the appointment.

Veterinary clinics nationwide are booked out anywhere from four days to three weeks. The increase in pet emergencies, combined with a shortage of skilled veterinary nurses and the inefficiency of curbside service, all contribute to the problem.

What you can do:

1. Understand that our pre-COVID world no longer exists.

Life looks so much different today than it did in February of 2020! Our staff is committed to providing top-quality care, and we are also committed to abiding by Washington State’s COVID-19 health guidance to keep you and our staff safe.

2. Think ahead. Be patient and kind.

We keep a number of same-day urgent care appointments available every day. These appointments are filled quickly, so call early if you think your pet needs to be seen right away.

Urgent care appointments have a higher charge than a regularly scheduled appointment. Learn more about typical conditions we see in urgent care.

We continue to provide concierge curbside service.

When we are able to allow pet parents back in the hospital, only one adult client at a time (not couples or families) will accompany their pet.

How Concierge Curbside Service Works

  1. Complete all necessary online intake forms before your appointment time.
  2. We will send you pre-appointment information, including a Zoom meeting link.
  3. You and your pet arrive in our parking lot and remain in your vehicle.
  4. Text us from the parking lot: 206-323-4433.
  5. Our staff will escort your pet into the hospital while you remain in our parking lot.
  6. Our staff and doctors will communicate with you via either Zoom, AirVet virtual visit, or phone, provide care for your pet, and then return your pet to your vehicle. Please be prepared to answer the doctor’s call while you are waiting in your car.
  7. Payment can be collected via a hands-free device in the parking lot.

You’ll want to plan your pet’s visit well in advance, and be patient with us if you experience a delay.

3. Take advantage of virtual veterinary consultations.

Virtual visits are an alternative to curbside visits. We’ve partnered with Airvet, a service where you and your pet can have a consultation with a veterinarian from the comfort of your own home.

During the appointment, you and your pet are on a video call (similar to Zoom, FaceTime, or Skype), where you are virtually in the exam room with the doctor, nurse, and your pet.

When you use Airvet for a scheduled pet behavior consult, you will talk with the veterinarian with whom you scheduled the consultation.

Telemedicine is also helpful for pet parents who have after-hours questions and concerns. The Airvet system will attempt to schedule you with one of our doctors. If we’re unavailable, you will consult with one of our partnered Airvet doctors.

Airvet is a quick and efficient way to ask questions, do follow-ups, and sometimes, to get the reassurance you need during those moments of “I don’t know if I should be freaking out or not!”

Click here to learn more about Airvet works and to download the Airvet app.

We so much appreciate our pet patients and their human counterparts! Thank you for your continued patience and grace as we mutually adjust to “the new normal.”

The staff at Atlantic Veterinary Hospital

Atlantic Veterinary Hospital in Seattle serves the following neighborhoods: Mt. Baker, Columbia City, Beacon Hill, Rainier Valley, Seward Park, Capitol Hill, Leschi, Central District, Madison Valley, International District, and Georgetown.