The health needs of a pet are diverse, so we are equipped with a variety of tools and expertise at our disposal. We provide essential preventive and treatment tools (e.g., examinations, parasite prevention, nutrition) to advanced diagnostics (e.g., radiology, ultrasonography, in-house blood chemistry testing), and treatments (e.g., chemotherapy, acupuncture).
Your pet has a mission in life: to be your companion and to have fun while s/he is at it. The fulfillment of that mission depends on being healthy. Pets have different needs according to their particular life stage.
Puppies and Kittens
Whether your new pet came from a breeder, a pet store, an animal shelter or the street, you may bring your new pet for a free consultation. Here we will assess his health and tell you what you could do to bring him up as a healthy pet. For instance, if you purchase a pet, it is imperative that you know if it has any congenital problems. If you adopted a cat from the street, you should know whether it has feline leukemia or feline AIDS. At this consultation, you will receive diet recommendations and schedule the puppy shots and deworming.
During the various visits that are required for vaccination of a puppy or kitten, we establish a rapport with the animal, getting to know their individual physiology and most importantly, we build an emotional link with them.
Vaccination Protocols for Puppies and Kittens
As a standard procedure, puppies and kittens receive a series of two or three vaccinations at four-week intervals. We vaccinate puppies for Parvovirosis (Parvo), Distemper and Hepatitis. Kittens are vaccinated for Feline
Leukemia, Calicivirus, Rhinotracheitis, and Panleukopenia. Rabies vaccination is given to puppies and kittens after three months of age. Puppies may need a vaccination for Kennel Cough (Bordetella) if they are going to puppy school, kennels or dog shows.
Deworming Protocols for Puppies and Kittens
Puppies and kittens need to be dewormed after two weeks of age and every two weeks until twelve weeks of age. Afterward, puppies may be given a combination deworming and flea product once per month.
Holistic Immunization Protocols for puppies and kittens
You may wish to follow a holistic approach in raising your puppy or kitten. This is a less intensive protocol where we seek to encourage natural immunity.
With the alternative vaccination protocols, we use one-way vaccines (i.e. vaccines that contain one single antigen rather than multiple antigens), certain homeopathic medicines called nosodes, and titre testing. Vaccines are spread out over a longer time period and any reaction is closely monitored so as not to interfere with the maturing of the puppy’s immune system.
For instance, if the puppy has a rash (which would be an immune reaction to grasses, pollens, insects, etc), vaccination is postponed until the rash is resolved.
Laboratory tests may be recommended in geriatric pets (six years of age and older), pets receiving chronic medication, or when the examination reveals potential problems with internal organs.
Vaccinations are the standard essential tool for infectious disease prevention. We use a three-year rotational vaccination protocol for dogs, which splits the core vaccines: rabies, parvovirus, and distemper. This way we achieve prolonged protection while minimizing the impact on the immune system.
Cats receive annual vaccinations for Feline Leukemia, Calicivirus, Rhinotracheitis and Panleukopenia.
Feline Vaccine Schedule:
8 Weeks: Upper Respiratory Vaccine (FVRCP)
12 Weeks: Upper Respiratory Vaccine and Leukemia Vaccine (FVRCP + Leukemia)
16 Weeks: Upper Respiratory Vaccine, Leukemia Vaccine, and Rabies (FVRCP, Leukemia, Rabies)
Annual vaccines are done 1 year after their 16-week vaccines and include Upper Respiratory, +- Leukemia, and Rabies.
Canine Vaccine Schedule:
8 Weeks: Distemper, Parvovirus, Canine Hepatitis (Adenovirus Type 1)
12 Weeks: Distemper, Parvovirus, Canine Hepatitis (Adenovirus Type 1), Leptospirosis
16 Weeks: Distemper, Parvovirus, Canine Hepatitis (Adenovirus Type 1), Leptospirosis, Rabies, +/- Bordetella (
First annual exam 1 year after puppy vaccine series (approx 1.5 years) – your puppy will receive a booster of all puppy vaccines.
At our clinic, we give a rotation of core vaccines (Distemper+Adenovirus, Parvovirus, Rabies) which each last for three years. At the time of their second annual exam (approx. 2.5 years), they will go into the rotation of:
1st Year: Distemper+ Adenovirus
2nd Year: Parvovirus
3rd Year: Rabies
Along with the scheduled
Other optional yearly vaccines include:
Lyme disease and Bordatella (
Consultations and Exams
In the consultation, firstly you tell us all about your concerns; when and how you noticed that your pet did not seem reasonable. We will ask you questions to clarify details. Secondly, we perform a thorough physical exam, from head to tail, where we make a note of anything that does not look normal. Thirdly, we draw some conclusions based on what we find and make recommendations.
The consultation may be sufficient for us to know what is wrong and how to treat it. But often we need to perform additional tests such as radiographs, blood work, urine tests, etc. You will be provided with an estimate of any further tests we recommend. Those tests may be run right after the consultation, with results being available within the hour. Specialized tests are sent to external labs and take a few days for the return of results.
We perform surgery as part of such routine health maintenance procedures as castration and spaying. We also perform surgery as a means of treatment of disease, such as the removal of tumors, foreign bodies (enterotomy, gastrotomy), bladder stones (cystotomy), and anal glands, among others. We also perform selected orthopedic procedures such as cruciate ligament repair, correction for luxating patella, and the internal reduction of fractures. The main interest of one of our doctors (Dr. Collard) is orthopedic surgery.
We recognize that surgery may be a stressful event both for you and your pet. We design and adjust anesthetic protocols based on the latest research.
If your pet has been our patient for some time before surgery, we will have developed a bond with him, understanding his personality, and will be able to act in such way as to make him feel as comfortable as possible. In addition, we understand his unique physiology and temperament, which helps us tailor his anesthetic protocol accordingly.
We also recommend blood tests and ECG before anesthesia, as an option for additional evaluation of your pet’s physiology, and for a finer tuning of your pet’s anesthetic protocol.
On the day of surgery, your pet is examined and given a sedative to calm him down; he is also given an analgesic as preemptive pain control. After your pet is calm, an IV line is placed, which allows us to administer a fast-acting anesthetic, which will cause him to fall asleep within a few seconds. IV fluids help maintain your pet’s blood pressure at normal levels, which protects his kidneys and nervous system. Your pet is kept sleeping with a gas anesthetic and with oxygen while the procedure is being performed. We continuously monitor his heart function (ECG), blood pressure, and the amount of oxygen in the blood.
After the surgery, your pet is monitored continuously while being allowed to waken. He is kept warm and his temperature is checked several times in order to prevent hypothermia. Your pet is also continuously evaluated for pain after the surgery, and receives an additional analgesic which may be repeated to keep him pain-free. While he recovers, up to the moment that you pick him up, your pet has company, is spoken to, petted, and taken out for a pee once the anesthetic wears off. You are welcomed to stay with your pet through any stage of the procedure.
Dental care begins at home and we recommend regular brushings, dental health products and dental diets designed to remove or reduce tartar from the teeth as the pet eats. However, during your pet’s life, it is highly likely that a dental cleaning will be required. We use an ultrasonic scaler to remove plaque and tartar buildup and will also polish the teeth. A final fluoride‑like rinse will help protect the teeth between cleanings.
Dental disease is a very serious problem among pets as it can contribute to diseases of major organs such as the kidneys, liver, and heart. Bacteria accumulating in the mouth can travel throughout the body. Remember too, that an animal with a chronic dental disease is also in chronic pain.
Dental X-ray technology, available during a dental cleaning, plays a major rôle in helping to determine if an animal is able to maintain the use of a tooth which might otherwise appear necessary to extract.
However, diseases of the eye are perhaps more common among animals than in human medicine. Most commonly, pets with allergies suffer from eye symptoms; certain breeds with prominent eyes are prone to suffer eye traumas, corneal ulcers, and dry eyes; and cats suffer infectious diseases that affect the eyes (e.g., calicivirus, rhinotracheitis). Some breeds are predisposed to suffer autoimmune diseases of the eye (pannus); glaucoma affects both cats and dogs.
If your pet has trouble with his eyes, we have specialized testing and equipment available for tear production, intraocular pressure (inside the eye), staining of the cornea to detect ulcers, and evaluation of the retina. Complicated cases are referred to the Atlantic Veterinary College.
Most diseases of the eyes can be treated with medication. Some require surgery, mainly to stimulate the healing of corneal ulcers, resolve red-eye, or to remove tumors from the eyelids.
To have proper control of all the factors involved in a prescription, we have an on-site pharmacy where we stock most of the medications used in our daily practice, including natural remedies. We stock medications from specific manufacturers that we have become familiar with and whom we trust. We carry medications from suppliers who can give guarantees of quality and support if there are unexpected results. We carry medications in the forms that we know will be the most appropriate for your pet, in most cases, so when you come for a consultation, you can leave with the medication your pet needs to start the treatment right away.
Fleas abound in Nova Scotia. Traditionally, fleas make their appearance in the summer and disappear in the winter. However, with increasing frequency, we are seeing flea infestation lasting through the winter. Therefore, flea control is becoming a year-round procedure. There are various products that are effective for flea control, and which one to use depends on your preference. The most effective flea products are combined with a dewormer. Thus, you achieve flea control and control of internal parasites, including heartworm.
Overall there are two methods: topical (a liquid applied onto the pet’s back) or an oral product. The efficacy and pricing of a topical and oral product are equivalent. The oral product (a pill) contains a product that controls fleas by interrupting their life cycle. Topical products are adulticides, .ie. they kill the adult fleas. All of them may be considered effective for one month after one dose.
We may find it hard to believe that our pets have internal parasites because we do not see the worms in their stool. However, studies done at the IWK hospital in Halifax revealed that 12% – 25% of children are exposed to internal parasites from dogs. Gastrointestinal worms stick to the inside of the intestine and lay thousands of eggs in the animal’s stool. From the stool, they are able to infect other animals, including humans. Combination products for flea control and internal parasite control are effective to eliminate gastrointestinal parasites (excluding tapeworms, which require specialized products). When the product is given once a month, you may protect your pet (and yourself) permanently from internal and external parasites.
Ticks are a bit more complicated because they are resistant to the flea products. Their treatment requires specific products. Fortunately, ticks like it warm but not hot, so they appear only in the spring and late summer. There are also products available that combine flea and tick control.
Tapeworms are rare in dogs but very common in cats. Cats become infected with tapeworms from eating mice and birds. There are topical and oral products to control tapeworms in cats. Topical products are advantageous as it eliminates the fight to get your cat to swallow the pill.
Canine Rehabilitation Services
Manual Therapies- Massage, Stretching, Joint Mobilization
Modalities- Laser, PEMF Bed & E-Stim/TENS
Home Exercise Programs
Who Can Benefit:
Dr. Angie Runnalls is a veterinarian and owner of Cobequid Animal Hospital. She completed her Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapy from the Canine Rehabilitation Institute in 2016. She has a special interest in senior patients with chronic mobility issues and arthritis. Your pet’s therapy is tailored to their specific presentation and requirement. Our goal is to develop a therapy plan that helps enable patients to achieve a comfortable and active life based on the goals of each individual family. In many cases, Acupuncture therapy which is provided by Dr. Fernando Moncayo can add additional benefits to your pet’s rehabilitation treatment plan. Call us to make an appointment or for more details.
Cobequid Care Packages
Did you know that your pet seeing the vet once a year is the same as if you were to see a physician only ONCE every SIX to EIGHT YEARS!!
How crazy it that?
This is exactly why we created Cobequid Care Packages (CCP’s).
During your pet’s annual
During the CCP we also discuss your pet’s lifestyle, life stage
We worked closely with Idexx, an outside laboratory, to form this send away
Available to both cats and dogs, we offer an adult package as well as a senior.
Working with an outside
If you are interested in Titer testing for your pet before vaccinating, it is available as requested at an additional charge.
We are offering Cobequid Care Packages as an option for your pet’s yearly wellness exam. So what are you waiting for? Contact us now to learn more or book your pet’s Cobequid Care Package.
Sat: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm