Monthly Archives: May 2012

Dr. Michelle Nguyen

Dr. Michelle Nguyen was born and raised in Seattle, Washington.  She started her undergraduate studies at Washington State University in Animal Sciences.  After her junior year, she was accepted to WSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine.  After graduation, she sought a drier and sunnier climate, and now calls the Reno-Tahoe area her home.  In her free time, she enjoys skiing, backpacking, hiking, rock climbing, and spending time with Tim, her three dogs, and two cats.  Her professional interests include dermatology, soft tissue surgery, internal medicine, and emergency and critical care.

Tips for Starting Weight Loss in Dogs

Tips for Starting Weight Loss in Dogs

By: Dr. Jackie Pulver

Obesity is one of the fastest growing diseases in pets. Over 50% of pets in the United States are now considered overweight. While we might think its hard to lose weight for ourselves, it is even tougher on our 4 legged friends. Below are some tips to help prevent weight gain.  If you ever think that your pet is having trouble with their weight and have tried these steps please contact the office and we will see about setting your pet up with an exam to further diagnosis the issue.

• Use a measuring cup to measure the amount of food being given at each meal-the amount of food recommended for the pet’s size and lifestyle may be discussed with your veterinarian.

• Make certain that a designated person is responsible for feeding the pet-this will prevent “accidental” overfeeding.

• Decrease or eliminate treats-consider giving ½ of normal treat or use baby carrots for treats.• Eliminate feeding table scraps.

• Make certain that the pet is not sneaking or stealing food from other pets in the household.

• Discuss starting a decreased calorie food with your veterinarian.

• Add exercise to the pet’s daily routine-even multiple small walks will make a difference.

• Weigh the pet on the same scale every 2-3 weeks to see gradual progress.

Rattlesnake Avoidance Training

This year we have already seen 2 dogs that have had run ins with rattlesnakes. Below is some information from the Nevada Wildlife Federation regarding classes and training.

Dogs who hike, hunt, camp, or live in rural areas may be at risk of rattlesnake bites, especially in the summertime. Rattlesnakes are prolific throughout the Great Basin, and without emergency treatment, dogs can die from a rattlesnake bite. The benefits of training are obvious for dogs, but they are significant for dog owners too. The dog’s reaction to detecting a rattlesnake can signal owners to avoid the snake, and training may also save pet owners a hefty vet bill; bitten dogs must be treated right away with several days in the hospital, and a vet bill that can be unexpected.

Classes for 2012 are offered June 16 and 17, and July 7 and 8 at Davis Creek Park. Training appointments can be scheduled throughout the day beginning at 8am. For more information on prices and registration please go to 

How to Help Keep Your Pet’s Stay Cool

How to Help Your Pet Stay Cool on the Hot Summer Days

By: Dr. Ben Davidson

As we finally start to get into some warmer weather, we need to start remembering to be careful about the heat and our pets.  Heat exhaustion and heat stroke are potentially fatal problems that can be avoided with a few simple steps and cares.  Keep in mind that our furry friends are exactly that…. furry.  Their hair coats make them several degrees hotter than we are, so even if it seems pleasant or acceptable to us, it can feel much hotter to them.
First and foremost, do not leave them in a parked car.  Even with the windows open, even in the shade, the internal temperature of a car can reach 130 degrees and is a major risk for heat stroke and death.  When out playing, walking, hunting, or anything else, make sure that the distance, pace, or time is not excessive.  Dogs cool themselves by panting, they don’t sweat like we do.  If they are dehydrated, they can’t do that effectively, so make sure you bring plenty of water for them, too.
Breeds with smooshed in faces, like bulldogs, can overheat on just a simple walk, so make sure to exercise only in the cooler morning or late evening hours.  When at home, make sure your dogs can either get inside to cooler temperatures or at least that they have a well-ventilated shady spot, and again make sure they have plenty of water at all times.  Your four-legged friends are just as happy as you are about the weather getting warmer and about spending some good quality time outdoors, but from all of them and all of us here at BBVH, please be careful and cautious about our summer heat.  Have a great summer!