February 2012

Remember to give your dog it’s monthly preventive medication.


QUINTUPLETS ARE A NEWS MAKING EVENT when it comes to human babies. When it comes to being voted BEST VET in Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan quints is equally big news.YES, IT IS TRUE, SYLVANIAVET HAS BEEN VOTED BY THE PET OWNING PUBLIC AS BEST VET FOR FIVE (5) CONSECUTIVE YEARS. We are honored and humbled to continue the string of best vet victories. We know that our loyal clients are most responsible for our string of victories, THANK YOU!! We will not wallow in glory but take the PENTAGON of awards as incentive to be even better and earn next year’s award as well. We are inspired to live up to the expectations that being considered Best Vet creates. Avis relishes in the position of being second. Our doggie daycare was again voted the Avis of best daycare. Though we know we are the best the voters chose another. Now if you think we will work hard to maintain best vet just pay attention as we show that we are also the best day care in the area. Friday, February 10th, The Toledo City Paper will hold their annual Best of Toledo party. Everyone is invited to the Pinnacle to celebrate all thewinners of contest. Many SylvaniaVET staffers will be there, please join us to celebrate our completing the winners star of best vet.

SYLVANIAVET-WESTMINSTER DOG SHOW & BUCKEYE CABLEhas teamed up to bring you the premier dog show in the world. That may be a slight exaggeration but, SylvaniaVET will be a local advertiser on this year’s Buckeye Cable’s presentation of the two-day Westminster Dog Show. The dog show will be aired on the USA network (Cable channel 4) Monday, February 13th and Tuesday, February 14th. The week before promo ads with SylvaniaVET mentioned will be aired. During the evening sessions our newly produced 30 second commercial will air. We would like to hear from any of you that see the ad to make comments. You can send comments to

MOST OF YOU KNOW THAT DR. BOB GREW UP IN SYLVANIA. He and Carol chose to come home in 1974 to open SylvaniaVET. Almost from the beginning, Dr. Bob began developing his vision of how a veterinary practice should be run. A high level of service to patients, clients and the community were the cornerstones of his philosophy. Over the years, in his home town, Dr. Bob has committed time and effort to each area. It is safe to say he has become a prominent member and great supporter of not only Sylvania, but the entire NW Ohio region. Late last month Dr. Bob, received notice that he had been nominated for and was chosen to receive the award of being a Sylvania Schools distinguished alumnus. “No one gets involved with an organization or community with the goal of being honored”, Dr. Bob stated. “When a life time of just trying to be a great member of a community results in such an honor I am truly honored and humbled”, he continued. The Sylvania Academic Excellence award ceremony will be held April 20th at Sylvania Country Club.

PUPPY DEVELOPMENT AND BASIC OBEDIENCE CLASSES TAUGHT BY DOUG RITTER OF DUNDEE K9 have been well received. His non-aggressive common sense approach to training is truly unique. There is no dog, regardless of age that cannot benefit from training. Our next set of class’s start Saturday February 18th and Tuesday, February 21st. Now is the time to enroll your dog in one of our Pawsative Dog Training classes. Click here for more information on our canine classes.

DR. BOB WILL BEGIN WRITING A TWICE A MONTH pet care column for both the Sylvania Advantage and the new electronic local newspaper from the Toledo Blade. He is anxious to have audience participation about topics and questions of interest to the readers. Unlike the printed edition of The Toledo Blade’s “Ask the Vet”, Dr. Bob will answer all questions submitted to the Sylvania Advantage, Sylvania Blade or to drbob@sylvaniavet .com.

OUR ON-GOING EFFORT TO KEEP ALL APPOINTMENTS ON TIME CONTINUES. We would like to remind you that in order for an appointment to start on time you must be on time. Don’t you love it when we state the obvious? We schedule appointments every 10 minutes so you may be given a strange time, like 2:10 or 6:40. We schedule 20 minutes for many appointments, so if you’re are a measly 10 minutes late after check-in and reaching the exam room, there will be less than 10 minutes left for the scheduled appointment. If everyone is always on time we can give each case all the attention it needs and still stay on time for all clients. If you are late we will make every effort to move you into another doctor’s schedule, ask you to reschedule, or put you in an emergency slot. If we have to move you to an emergency slot there may be a $25 daytime emergency fee applied to your bill.
The following is what we first published about our effort to stay on time and why it is so important to us and to you. A client showing up late for an appointment puts us behind. We have allocated the amount of time we traditionally need for the scheduled appointment. If a client arrives 10-15 minutes late we do not have enough time to accomplish the appointment. This will put us behind and forces someone who has been on time to wait for their appointment. We have determined that it is not fair to an on-time client to be inconvenienced by our seeing an appointment that is late, ahead of the on time client. To this end any client that is late will be informed that we will see them ASAP, but they will have to wait or reschedule. If the tardy client chooses to wait they will be placed in-line for the next available doctor. The possibility of having to pay an emergency visit fee may be discussed with the client and applied. It is not our goal to apply this fee or make it seem punitive. Rather, it is there because late appointments disrupt an already busy schedule just like an emergency. We simply will not punish an on-time client because another client shows up late. In the past we have done this. We have heard from the inconvenienced clients and we have listened. We encourage you to be a few minutes early for your appointment. Grab a coffee, pop and cookie and celebrate your early arrival. We will do all that is possible to get you in on-time.

“IS YOUR BIRD STRESSED?” IS THE TITLE OF OUR AVAIN BEHAVIORAL CONSULTANTS CONTRIBUTION THIS MONTH. We are very pleased to have nationally renowned author and speaker contribute to our monthly newsletter. We hope you feel the same.

Is your bird stressed with objects in its environment, such as toys, mirrors, people, and cage or play-stand location? Your bird should be able to let you know. Begin to learn how to read your bird’s behavior and body language. Each bird is an individual and each have different behaviors but some behaviors can be common among species.
Many times owners place or hang certain objects in or near the bird’s cage or play stand and do not realize the bird is afraid of that object. When inside a cage, often times a bird has no opportunity to escape from a feared object. This is a term called “flooding”. Flooding has several undesirable behavior side effects on all animals, including our birds. Forcing a bird to be faced with a feared object with no opportunity to escape can cause many behavior side effects such as screaming, pacing, and feather picking to name a few. Remember, in the wild if something scares a bird, its first reaction is to fly away. Many times when a bird is in a cage, this option is not available. This is sure to have a consequence on behavior.

So how do we know if our birds are stressed? Watch them. Pay attention to their behaviors before placing an object near or in their cage and watch their behavior when it is not near them. Is there a difference? Observe your bird’s behavior, shape of the eye, feather placement, and stance when you know your bird is comfortable. Does any of that change when something new is introduced to their immediate environment? Watching body language can be a great source of communication between you and your bird. For more information on behavior, training, & enrichment visit my website

THERE IS EXCITING NEWS BESIDES BEING VOTED BEST VET AT SYLVANIAVET. Two of the young women that we recommended for acceptance into OSU’s 2012 veterinary class have been accepted. Shannon Longenecker, who works in boarding and has mentored with us for over three years, will be in the class starting this fall. A classmate of hers will be Kelsey Ozuk. Kelsey is from Sylvania and mentored with us for an entire summer. She graduated with a degree in animal science in December. Congratulations to the fulfillment of your life long dreams Shannon and Kelsey.

This spring two members of our client relations staff will deliver their babies. Stefanie and Tiffany will return after maternity leave. Not to be out done by the client relations staff, our professional staff is also expecting. Dr. Natalie is expected to give birth to her and her husband JJ’s first child in mid to late July and Melanie will deliver hers and Nick’s second child in late August or early September. All the other doctors are preparing to pick up the slack while Dr. Natalie and Dr. Melanie are off on maternity leave. Two of our technicians and two of our assistants are also expecting! Congratulations to Jenny, Ericka, Cheryl and Katie.

THE RESULTS OF OUR BRIEF POLL CONCERNING HOURS are in and it has been decided that there will be no change for now. There was limited response indicating that appointment hours should be expanded. In addition, with two doctor’s pregnant, expanding hours is not a good idea. Even the busiest person should be able to find a convenient time was a common statement of many responders. Thank you all for taking the time to respond to our questions. Just a reminder we are open more hours than any area practice. A few that elect to stay open later a couple nights a week then send you away to the emergency clinic. Of course you will always have SylvaniaVET doctors and staff available to you for emergencies. We are the only area practice that makes a full-time commitment to you and your pets. That is a great reason for you to refer all your pet owning friends, family and co-workers to us. Don’t forget you receive a $40 credit for each referral.

TREATS ARE NOT CHEW TOYS AND THEIR CALORIES MUST BE COUNTED IN CONTROLLING YOUR DOGS WEIGHT. We all like to indulge in a treat once and a while. We know what a big bowl of ice cream before bed can do to the waist line so if we are careful we do not splurge every night. Even the most calories conscious weight watchers among us do not consider the effect daily treats have on a dog’s weight. “He expects a treat every time he comes in from potty” and “it is only a couple of Snausages before bed and when I leave in the morning”, are common comments when discussing overweight Fido. Let’s just say it, dogs do not need treats and the empty calories add to the dog’s daily caloric intake.

An adult house dog that walks a few miles a week and roams the yard chasing a squirrel needs about 20-25 calories per pound of its ideal weight. Therefore, a dog whose weight is 70 pounds should consume 1400-1750 calories per day. A more sedentary dog will need less, in most cases. A hard working dog may need more, up to 30 calories per pound. A dog that needs to lose weight needs no more than 15 calories per pound or 10% less that its ideal weight. So a dog that should weigh 70 lbs should be feed like a 63 pounds dog which is 945 calories. You must count all the calories in the dog food, treats and table food and not go over the maximum amount. A cup of dry adult dog food will have between 350 and 450 calories per cup depending on the brand. You must know the calorie count of the food you feed. Measure precisely and feed in two or three small meals.

If you feed snacks learn the content of each snack you feed. Those four Snausages that were given total 132 calories per day. A jumbo Greenie to help with dental care is 115 calories. A large Beggin’Chew is 672 K. The prize winner in the Big Mac category is Busy Bone Chew, large, 732 K. All fruit, except grapes and raisins, green bean, small raw carrots are ok treats. All dogs, but especially those on a diet, need a 20 min walk every day.

There is a new iPhone app to help you monitor your pet’s activity and caloric intake. We know nothing about the app at this time. It was developed by Sheri Cone, DVM. Doggie Dietician available at,/apps/DoggieDietician. Let us know what you think if you purchase and use the app.

We have a hand out, Calorie Count for Common Treats for the asking.

SPECIALISTS ARE SPECIAL AND NO ONE WITHOUT THE ADVANCED TRAINING NECESSARY TO BE A MEMBER OF A SPECIALITY SOCIETY CAN CLAIM TO BE ONE. In the Toledo area there is only one veterinarian that is a board certified specialist, Dr. Orosz who is an exotics and bird specialist. Many area veterinarians have a strong interest in a specific area of the profession, but are not specialists. On our staff Dr. Kate has taken advanced training in orthopedic surgery and does advanced fracture repairs with external fixation and bone plating. She has done some remarkable surgery. Her surgical skills are not limited to bones as she is proficient in soft tissue surgery and grafting. Dr. Bob has done over a thousand knee surgeries with remarkable results. Dr. Jen is strongly interested in internal medicine, oncology and transfusion medicine. Dr. Taye is extremely interested in ultrasound, cardiology and cat medicine. She and Dr. Bob are members of the American Association of Feline Practioners. Dr. Taye has enough expertise to screen a heart problem and determine if a specialist appointment is needed immediately. Dr Melanie has advanced knowledge in exotics, avian, allergy testing, reproduction and ultrasound. Dr Andrea is very interested in exotics and as our new grad just developing her areas of interest. Dr. Natalie is very interested in dentistry, therapeutic laser and is expanding her knowledge in rehabilitation. As the old guy on the staff Dr. Bob has developed several areas of interest that include, dermatology, dental, orthopedic and soft tissue surgery, behavior counseling and reproduction. Of course we all see clients and do the everyday appointments. Isn’t it great to have someone on staff with advanced knowledge in almost every area of specialty in the profession? With our large professional staff we also have in hospital second opinions on every case if needed.

IF YOUR PET IS HOSPITALIZED WE WILL MAKE EVERY EFFORT TO not only discuss progress, prognosis, and additional work we may feel necessary, but the status of the bill. Improved financial communication is one of the improved customer service goals we have set for 2012. We will try to give a realistic estimate for every case admitted and we will try to keep you fully informed every day about every aspect of your pets hospital stay. Of course you may call or visit anytime, 24/7, to inquire about your pet and if you desire the current status of your bill. It is always important to remember that we give estimates not quotes for our fees. We try to estimate every case for a specific period of time, i.e. the first 24 hours, the cost of a spay through suture removal etc. Every morning the treatment doctor or assigned tech will call you with an update. It is critical that we have an active daytime number so these calls can be completed.

WE OFFER SO MANY SERVICES IT CAN BE DIFFICULT FOR YOU TO KEEP TRACK. One of our least known services, but one that is crucially important to many, is our grief counseling service. Group meetings are held the first Wednesday of each month at Christ Presbyterian Church. Several long term attendees moderate the meetings where tears and laughs are equally common.

BECAUSE OF OUR LARGE STAFF and growth it is not unusual for us to have job openings. If you are interested in working at SylvaniaVET you can check regularly on the website,, under the career icon. Right now we are looking for a licensed Veterinary Technician as Amanda will be moving to Chicago in a few months.

LAST MONTH WE TOLD YOU ABOUT SAM RECEIVING STEM-CELL THERAPY FOR HIS ARTHRITIS. We are about four weeks post treatment and he is in his snow bird mode. He is running the beach, climbing stairs and jumping up and down from furniture. He could not do this before the therapy. Actually he is more active than we would like. Would stem-cell therapy be right for your dog? Ask Dr. Mel or Dr. Bob.

JUVENILE ARETHRITIS HAS BEEN FOUND TO OCCUR MORE FREQUENTLY IN DOGS ACQUIRED FROM A PET STORE. 43% of the dogs with early onset arthritis came from a pet store while 13% came from a breeder litter and 20% from an animal shelter. Cage rising at the puppy mill where the pet store dogs originated is suspected as a contributing cause of the juvenile arthritis. Here is another reason to avoid purchasing a dog from a pet store.

SOMETIMES YOU HAVE TO RERUN THE TEST TO GET THE ANSWER. We know this is frustrating when the additional expense of repeating a test is necessary. However, medicine is far from precise so even if everything is done perfectly a test may not give the answer to the problem being worked on. Two examples occurred recently. The first case was an older cat was losing weight and still eating well. This is a classic sign of diabetes and hyperthyroidism. Both diseases were tested for and all tests came back normal. The client elected to “wait a bit” before going further. More than six months later the cat’s condition had not improved so back to testing. This time by redoing the thyroid test and adding an additional test, t-3 suppression, we were able to diagnose hyperthyroid. The second case is a beautiful white German Shepherd who just wouldn’t gain weight. We checked for everything and did not find the answer. He was healthy but skinny; he had soft to loose stools but could control them. After multiple diet trial, worming and other tests a year had passed. We reran a digestion test, PLI, TLI, Folate, Cobolamine, and finally learned he lacks sufficient digestive enzymes to properly digest his food. Enzyme supplements should enable him to gain weight and firm his stool. Persistence and the resolve to get a diagnosis is the hall mark of our practice philosophy. Our goal, not always attainable, is to get a precise diagnosis on every case.

HELP SAVE LOLA is still a very active page on Facebook. If you have not been to her page we encourage you to do so. Her rescue, recover and willingness to sacrifice herself to care for her puppies are one great story. Lola will be in our new cable TV ad.