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Dr. Alison Birken

Alison Birken, D.V.M. received her degree from The University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine. She currently practices veterinary medicine in South Florida

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Your Pet's HEALTH - with Dr. Birken

Pets Pets Pets...

By Dr. Alison Birken

A Puppy for The Holidays – Are You Ready?

The holidays are around the corner and one of the most popular gifts to give and receive is a new puppy or kitten.  Breeders and shelters sell and adopt more animals during the holiday season than any other time of the year.  This can be a wonderful experience for both the animals and their new owners.  Nothing is greater then giving a new home and family to an animal in need.  However, many times, especially during the holiday season, puppies and kittens are adopted without owners entirely understanding and considering the love and care they need to provide, not just f…

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What Not to Feed Your Pet

There are many foods that people routinely eat without a problem. These same foods, however, can have a very different effect on our pets. The spectrum is broad, ranging from mild gastrointestinal symptoms to major toxic reactions.

With the approaching holidays, veterinarians will soon be treating some of the most serious cases of food indiscretion and food toxicity.  At this time of the year, it is very important for you, as pet owners to have a good working knowledge of which foods are potentially harmful to your pets.

In general, any kind of “people food” can ca…

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What are Vaccines and Which Ones Should I Give to My Pet?

Just like us, your pet has an immune system which is made up of many organs and cells in the body that defends against infection, disease and foreign substances. A vaccine is a preparation that is administered to your pet to improve his or her immune system in order to fight off certain diseases.   A vaccine typically contains a small amount of an agent that stimulates your pet’s immune system to recognize the agent as foreign, destroy it, and “remember” it, so that your pet will not contract that disease in the future.

There are many diseases that can be ea…

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Top 10 Preventive Health Tips for Your Pets

  1. Have your pet vacinated.
  2. Spay or Neuter your pet.
  3. Get Yearly Booster Shots.
  4. Get Yearly Checkups.
  5. After age seven your pet needs a senior wellness exam with blood and urine samples.
  6. Help your pet to maintain the correct weight.
  7. Exercise everyday with your pet.
  8. Protect your pet with monthly heartworm, flea and tick medications.
  9. Keep your pets teeth healthy.
  10. Watch your pet for changes in actions or behaviors, this may indicate that your pet is not feeling well. Contact your vet with any questions.

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