Thursday, November 26, 2015

Loosen those belts....

 December is fast approaching....

WOW! Christmas is less than 1 month away. How time flies. We are gearing up at our hospital for our upcoming annual BAKE-A-THON and Raffle Table. Don't feel like baking for the holidays? It's easy... just come on over Dec 7 or 8th (that's a Monday and Tuesday) and pick from a HUGE assortment of goodies. The last few years there were even pet treats available. If you are looking to help out our cause, we always welcome anyone to bake and drop it off to our hospital the morning of the 7th. 
All proceeds go towards the charity the GAAP. Now this year we have a Canadian Chapter of the GAAP which gives us a liscnce to be able to practice veterinary medicine in remote areas  IN Canada!  Yeah! 
At our yearly bake sale we always have a raffle table or silent auction with really cool ideas for Christmas. This is we will also have ladies wool wraps to wear brought all the way from Guatemala, woven in Todos Santos! They will be available for sale, but we could only bring so many home, so there is a limited quantity in a variety of colors. They look fantastic with leggings or jeans. What a wonderful gift to give. One last thing, Dr. Lechten is known to be a number one baker! Last year she made banana, apple and cinnamon Amish bread that sold out in 3 hours. Yes we said 3 hours! This year we are placing orders prior to the sale. The loaves are 8$ each.  Don't miss out, we'll see you there! 

Thursday, September 24, 2015

 World Rabies day was started  in 2007 to bring awareness to the public about rabies around the world. Did you know that 60% of people who die from rabies are children under the age of 15. September 28th is the official World Rabies Day, where every year communities around the globe are trying to raise awareness and promote prevention especially to communities that are high risk.

Rabies is preventable! It is as simple as a vaccine! Canadian cases have been on the decline since the 80's due to control measures. The rabies virus us responsible for killing nearly 70,000 people worldwide! Once symptoms appear in a human, the disease is almost always fatal. Rabies is passed in saliva through a bite, scratch or contact with  mucous membranes or open wounds. Rabies is found in both domestic and wild animals. Those are some scary facts, but what makes it even more profound is that those are true facts.

In Todos Santos where our team travels to each each, it is known as a high risk area for Rabies. Due to the fact that Vets without Borders and the GAAP have had a presence in the area for the past several years, the locals have noticed a decline in roaming dogs (vaccine and pet population control hospital set up each year)

We have launched our newest campaign, "Buy a vaccine for a pet in Guatemala". For a donation of 5$ you can have a pet vaccinated in Guatemala. When our team is there in 2016 they will take a photo of the pet you paid to have vaccinated against Rabies and will email it back to you. What a wonderful gift! Come on in today, together we CAN END rabies!

We started it in 2007 to create a global opportunity for people to focus on rabies prevention. - See more at:
We started it in 2007 to create a global opportunity for people to focus on rabies prevention. - See more at:

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

The dog days of summer, almost over...

Well fall is near, summer was a busy season for us at the hospital, we welcome the fall colors. We have quite a few event that will be going on in the next few months at our hospital, please stay tuned to our newsletter and facebook page for the most up-to-date information. Speaking of information we are honored to have Dr. Elena Garde the co founder of  the GAAP (Global Alliance Animal and People) here to visit with us next week, where she will be giving an informative session all about the GAAP and what it does.
We also are hosting a Canvas and Cabernet night where you paint with an instructor on  a canvas while enjoying a beverage of your choice. (Yes that includes wine!). Spaces are limited so don't delay join today! (See our facebook event page for more info).

We are proud to announce we will be launching our new website shortly (stay tuned), and we will be launching our "Buy a vaccine" campaign, where for a minimal amount you can purchase a vaccine for a pet in Guatemala. We will email you a photo when our team goes to Guatemala of the pet and family you have helped.

That's all our secrets we can spill for now, but there is so much more to come! We are super excited, stay tuned!

Friday, June 26, 2015

Incredible....millionith urinary stone!

Ever wonder when we remove urinary bladder stones how they get analyzed or where they travel to? 

TOPEKA, Kan. (June 22, 2015) – The Minnesota Urolith Center (MUC) is celebrating the analysis of the millionth urinary stone (urolith since it set out to reduce the worldwide incidence of urinary disease in companion animals and to enhance the veterinary and nutritional care of pets with urinary tract disorders. With support from Hill's Pet Nutrition, Inc., a long-term partner, the MUC is able to deliver an analysis service to veterinarians globally, enabling them to access results and other information easily.

The MUC, part of the University of Minnesota, College of Veterinary Medicine, leads the world in the analysis and treatment of urinary stones, research to identify risk factors for urolithiasis and science-supported recommendations for urolith prevention.

“Analysing one million stones tells us that veterinarians really care about improving the health of their patients and support our efforts in helping them do so,” said MUC Co-Director Professor Jody Lulich. “In the past, stones were thrown away or even taken to school for 'show and tell,' but it is increasingly accepted that analysis provides valuable data to improve the health of companion animals and is vital to prevent recurrence.”

The epidemiologic data retrieved through stone analysis has helped veterinarians develop compassionate, minimally-invasive therapies to manage stones without surgery. Lulich cited as an example the nutritional dissolution of feline and canine struvite uroliths.
In 2014, the MUC analysed uroliths from 86,875 animals from 55 countries. Most of the stones, 68%, came from the US, but Lulich said global participation is increasing and veterinarians in Japan, the UK, Taiwan and Australia frequently submit stones for analysis. Veterinarians around the world are able to transport stones to the MUC and receive an analysis at no cost, thanks to support from Hill’s Pet Nutrition.
"We're seeing some interesting trends,” Lulich said. “For instance, while New Zealand and Australia are on the same continent, separated by only two thousand km of the Tasman Sea, the types of stones that are submitted differ. In 2014, the most common stones from dogs in Australia were struvite, while the most common stone in New Zealand dogs was calcium oxalate. Mining data from different geographic locations may help us better understand the risk factors and causes for different stone types."
Jody Lulich added: "Hill's has been with us every step of the way, and their support underpins the progress we have made. With their continued help and with the kind donations we receive from veterinary professionals and pet owners worldwide, we will continue to strive to improve the efficiency of our service and provide the veterinary profession with results and science-supported recommendations they can use to best manage their individual patients."
Dr Jolle Kirpensteijn, ‎Chief Professional Relations Officer at Hill's Pet Nutrition, said, “We congratulate MUC on reaching this milestone. Our close partnership with the MUC shows the value of collaboration between industry and academia to veterinarians, pets and owners worldwide.”

Monday, June 22, 2015

Here we GROW again!

Welcome Dr. Stephanie Pierre! Allandale Veterinary Hospital has added a sixth doctor, yes we said sixth! It's hard to believe but we have only been in our new hospital for a few short years and already are growing.
"Lizzy" with Dr. Pierre

Dr. Pierre knew since she was a young girl that she wanted to be a veterinarian. Her dream came true this spring when she graduated with distinction from the Ontario Veterinary College in Guelph, ON. She completed a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Science at the University of Guelph before applying to vet school. Her special interests include surgery, emergency medicine, behavior and building relationships with pets and clients.

Dr. Pierre has recently moved to Barrie with her boyfriend and their corgi, Lizzy. They enjoy spending their time working on projects around their new home and exploring what the city has to offer. Her hobbies outside of work include softball, volleyball and travel. She has volunteered at a variety of shelters and rescues around the world, and looks forward to continuing that passion with the Allandale team. 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Watch that thorn...

How to keep a PET SAFE garden....

It’s the perfect time of year to start digging around in your garden—and your clients are likely doing the same. But if there are pets running around the yard, be cautious of what you plant because the flowers that make your garden pretty could be toxic to pets.
Bee Balm
Butterfly flower
Coral Bells
Goat’s Beard
New Guinea Impatiens
Queen of the Meadow
Spider flower
Violet Yellow
Corydalis Zinnia

The non-plant concerns in the garden include fertilizers, pesticides, slug bait, mulch, and garden tools. Talk to your local nursery about the safest options, read labels carefully, and store everything safely in sealed containers or out of reach. Try natural products like vinegar for weeds, coffee grounds, beer, and salt for slugs, and soap and water as a natural pesticide. Avoid cocoa mulch as it comes from chocolate manufacturing and can contain substances that will cause minor chocolate poisoning (vomiting, diarrhea, hyperactivity) as well as general irritation to the mouth, stomach and intestines.
Spider Flower
Many mature dogs (and almost all cats)  might sniff, but they're not inclined to eat plants. Grass is often the exception and in small amounts, common grasses are safe. Ornamental grasses can be irritating to the mouth, throat, and nose so if you have a big grass eater, it is safest to avoid these plants.
Remember that puppies and kittens are an exception. They will eat anything. It still makes most sense however to always pick the safest plants possible for spring flower gardens and deck pots.

Should you have any concerns that your pet did come in contact with a plant, give us a call and we will gladly help you to find out whether the plant is toxic or not. 

Thursday, April 30, 2015

last but not least....

After a very long road trip from Guatemala City into Todos Santos we arrived at our hotel where we were greeted with smiles and hugs by the founders of the GAAP (Global Alliance for Animals and People) Great people! Working with Elana & Guillermo was amazing! They are so dedicated to their projects in making this world a little better one project at a time. The world needs more people like them in it.

The people in Todos Santos were friendly and seemed grateful and happy that we were there, smiles everywhere! I felt welcome. I was surprised at the fact that no matter where we went the people of Todos Santos would smile and greet us. They have so little if anything at all but still manage to smile and say hello (Hola).
This experience has shown me that no matter how big or small are problems are we are very fortunate and should never take anything for granted. The people in Todos Santos work very hard and have so little but seem happy. I've also learned that these people truly love their pets and walk great distances to get to the the clinic.
This was my first time traveling with my coworkers to take part in this amazing adventure and I wasn't sure what to expect however for the most part it was pretty much how I pictured it. Dogs, cats roaming the street freely unlike the dogs/cats back home made me sad but I took comfort in knowing that we were there to help and better the situation for the people and their pets.
Saturday morning we had a day dedicated to the children in the community. Our goal was to teach the children and their families about proper care for their pets but having a little fun along the way. The kids loved the Face painting, balloons, games etc. My job was to help the kids make animal themed crowns which seemed to be a huge hit with the kids! So much so that some of them would come back to make a third and fourth crown. I watched as one little boy tried to trick me and he actually removed the crown he made then folded it up and tried to stuff it in his pocket so that he could make another. I smiled at him and helped him make a second crown but this one was going to be the best crown ever! I used half a pack of sticker jewels because his eyes grew wider and his smile bigger with each one so it made it harder for me to stop. He kept thanking me but his smile was more than enough.
Sunday we set up in the "Salon" (community gymnasium) for our upcoming week of vaccines and surgeries. Everyone worked so hard and it came together perfectly, Great team work!
Then our busy work week begun! I worked in recovery with the animals that were waking up from surgery as well as working with the veterinarians assisting in the exams and with administering vaccines. All hard work but the feeling you get at the end of each day made it all worth it!
I'm proud everyday to be a part of the Allandale team but this journey made me even more proud to work with these amazing ladies. This experience has given me so much and for that I'm grateful.

- Shawnah

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

round three...

I have been very fortunate to have made this incredible journey now for the third year.   When asked by new people what to expect I tell them - long days, hard work, you're filthy for a week and the 2 day travel time is almost painful.  However the reward of being one out of 21 strangers that all come together to form an extraordinary veterinary team that helps the people and pets of Todos Santos, Guatemala outweighs it all.
Our first day in Todos Santos is the Community Day.  The team comes together to help educate the villagers on being a good pet owner and the responsibilities that come along with that. The day is set up with educational games for the children to play and arts and crafts.  What I struggled with last year, was the young boys that were stained with ink up to their elbows and were shining grown men’s shoes.  These boys were not able to play as they were stuck making an income, which they could not afford to lose for a half hour of play.  It broke my heart.  This year I saw the same young boy shining shoes and with great surprise he quickly joined in on the fun.  I think about the difference one year to the next makes with our invasion on this small quiet village and it makes me smile.
Our goal this year was three times higher than last year and I was pumped with excitement to achieve those goals.  Whether you were restraining dogs, drawing up vaccines, on your knees in recovery, being run off your feet as an assistant or technician or  being a veterinarian standing in the same spot doing surgeries from 8am to 6pm, five days a week,  it was hard work.   I am very pleased to say we accomplished our goal without turning anyone away.  I truly admire the dedication of all.
As the week passed and the salon filled it was nice to see familiar faces.  The children and pets are returning and growing each year.  They are recognizing us and excited to see us.  The hugs they give makes it all worth it.  As I look back on the last three years I see how far we’ve come and I realize it’s working.  We see less dogs roaming, more coming for rabies vaccines, dog population seems less and we are building relationships to last a lifetime.
For a community of poverty, that has a hard time feeding themselves, it amazes me that they have dogs.  Dogs do not give them food, they cannot supply them milk.  They do not help with farming or any other manual labor like horses do.  So I have come to realize that the need for them is the same as ours; companionship and love.