Pet Health Columns

Experts on animal health from the college's clinics in Urbana and Chicago share their knowledge in informative columns written for animal owners. Scan the categories and tags at left for topics that interest you. Subscribe to our weekly Pet Health Columns email.

farrier applies shoe to horse's hoof

Horses Need Farriers

Feb 24, 2021 / General Care / Preventive Health / Horses

Horses need new shoes every 4 to 6 weeks What animal regularly wears shoes and needs help putting them on? It’s a horse, of course! Horses need their hooves trimmed and horseshoes placed regularly, a procedure referred to as “shoeing” a horse. The person trained to shoe horses is called a farrier. Farriers provide an...

[a dog gets its teeth brushed]

Toothbrushing for Dogs and Cats

Jan 30, 2021 / Dentistry / Cats / Dogs

February is National Pet Dental Health Month “Periodontal disease is the most common disease in dogs and cats over 3 years old,” says Dr. Mallory Kanwal, a veterinarian who is pursuing specialization in dentistry at the University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital in Urbana. Periodontal disease begins in pets just as it does in people:...

[racehorses]

TVEC: Treatment Option for Atrial Fibrillation in Horses

Nov 23, 2020 / Advances in Medicine / Cardiology / Horses / Wildlife

Few Veterinary Hospitals Offer Equine TVEC Atrial fibrillation is the most common heart arrhythmia in horses, and it is one that sometimes impacts performance for the equine athlete. At the University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital in Urbana, Dr. Ryan Fries, a board-certified veterinary cardiologist, and Dr. Scott Austin, who is board-certified in large animal...

[dog in front of holiday decor]

Keep Pets Safe from Holiday Hazards

Nov 14, 2020 / Emergency/Critical Care / Toxicology / Cats / Dogs

Most Problems Can Be Prevented No one knows better than a veterinarian who staffs the emergency room that the holidays can be fraught with hazards for pets. Luckily, most of the dangers can easily be prevented with some foresight and good advice. Dr. Yanshan Er, a veterinarian at the University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital...

[dog looking anxiously out window]

Separation Anxiety in Pets: Your Questions Answered

Nov 7, 2020 / Behavior

Change is hard; be patient Among the innumerable consequences of the nation sheltering in place during the pandemic, perhaps one of the nicest was the surge in pet adoptions. But, as first-time pet owners returned to their daily routine of work or school after an extended time at home with their animal, some discovered that...

[Heather Soder]

Veterinary Technicians Play Vital Roles

Oct 21, 2020 / General Care

Vet Techs Help Animals and People Veterinary technicians make up a crucial part of the veterinary care team. Not only do they assist veterinarians in hands-on care of animal patients, but many also provide client education, serve various administrative roles, and even specialize in a specific service area. While veterinary technicians often obtain and hone...

[dog looking guilty]

GI Upset in Cats and Dogs

Oct 12, 2020 / General Care / Preventive Health / Cats / Dogs

Consistent Diet May Help Prevent the Problem The two most common symptoms seen in a small animal general practice are vomiting and diarrhea, referred to as “GI [gastrointestinal] upset.” These symptoms can range from mild to more severe and affect dogs and cats. Dr. Drew Sullivan, the medical director at the University of Illinois Medical...

[closeup of dog's nose/face]

Coronavirus and Pets: FAQs for Owners

Oct 7, 2020 / Infectious Disease / Public Health / Cats / Dogs

Do pets or other animals get sick from SARS-CoV-2 like people do? This answer depends on the species. Several species including cats (domestic and exotic), mink, dogs and non-human primates have all tested positive for the virus after exposure to a human with known or suspected SARS-CoV-2. Cats and mink are most likely to become...