Health Care Services at North Paws

Health Maintenance Services of North Paws Veterinary ClinicInternal Medicine

Despite the very best preventive care, your favorite pet can become sick. When this happens, it is stressful for you and your companion, especially because you can't simply ask what's wrong. You need a skilled veterinarian whom you can trust to accurately diagnose and effectively treat your pet.

While the focus of our medical practice at North Paws Veterinary Clinic is your pet's wellness, an important part of our services is the diagnosis and non-surgical treatment of diseases that can affect your pet's internal organs and body systems. Dr. Riggs, supported by advanced diagnostic technology, can identify and effectively treat a range of complex diseases.

After performing a thorough examination, Dr. Riggs may utilize diagnostic tests to identify the underlying cause of your pet's illness. It is our policy to review any recommended tests with you before they are performed, as well as discuss all the available treatment options and fees; our foremost concern is maintaining your pet's wellness and your peace of mind.

Health Maintenance Services of North Paws Veterinary ClinicGlaucoma Prevention

Glaucoma is a common condition in which the fluid pressure inside the eye increases, resulting in damage to the optic nerve, followed by loss of vision and blindness. There are two types of glaucoma. Primary, or chronic, glaucoma is hereditary or develops as your pet ages. Secondary, or acute, glaucoma develops as the result of an injury or illness. Because secondary glaucoma can progress rapidly, it is considered an emergency situation.

Symptoms of glaucoma to look for include:

  • Redness in the eye
  • Tearing or discharge
  • Eye sensitivity to light
  • Pain
  • Cloudy-looking eye
  • Bulging eyeball

The eye exam is not only an effective screening measure for chronic and acute glaucoma, but can also help set a baseline measurement of your pet's normal intraocular pressure (IOP). Establishing an IOP baseline is important because the normal measurement can vary between species, breeds and even individual pets.

This is a noninvasive, simple procedure that should not cause your pet any pain or discomfort. We apply a mild anesthetic eye-drop to ensure your pet is comfortable during the exam.

Allergies and Skin Problems in Dogs and Cats

Allergies are extremely common in dogs of all breeds and backgrounds, typically as a result of fleas; however, they can also be the result of food or an inhaled irritant like dust or pollen. Most allergies appear after the pet is six months of age, with the majority of affected dogs over age two. The most common symptom associated with allergies is localized or generalized skin itching. Other symptoms include respiratory distress (coughing, sneezing and wheezing) or digestive problems causing vomiting, flatulence or diarrhea.

Flea allergy is the most common allergy in cats. A normal cat experiences only minor skin irritation at the site of the bite. The flea-allergic cat, on the other hand, has a severe, itch-producing reaction when the flea's saliva is deposited in the skin. Just one bite causes such intense itching that the cat may severely scratch or chew itself, leading to hair loss and open sores or scabs on the skin. The area most commonly involved is over the rump or base of the tail.

It is important to be able to identify the first signs and symptoms of allergies and dermatological conditions. These include:

  • Scratching, licking, chewing or biting the skin, feet and ears.
  • Red, raised, scaly areas on the skin
  • Bumps, crusts or pus-filled vesicles on the skin
  • Increased skin pigmentation
  • Thickened skin
  • Loss of hair
  • Salivary staining (brown color)
  • Head shaking

Health Maintenance Services of North Paws Veterinary ClinicIf your pet exhibits any of these symptoms, please make an appointment to have him or her seen by Dr. Riggs at North Paws Veterinary Clinic. We will evaluate your pet, determine the most effective method of treatment, and explain how you can prevent future problems. If left untreated, allergic reactions and skin conditions can become serious medical concerns.

Prescription Diets

Your pet may have serious nutritional challenges or chronic conditions that benefit from a special diet. Making this change can have a significant positive impact on your pet's overall health and well-being.

Prescription diets benefit medical conditions such as liver disease, bladder and kidney disease, digestive problems, renal failure, food allergies, diabetes and more. North Paws Veterinary Clinic carries a diverse inventory of prescription foods and high-quality nutritional products.

Our Online Pet Products Store and Pharmacy

As an added convenience, you may place orders through our online pet products store, which carries a huge array of prescriptions, pet foods and products. This makes for an easy, budget-friendly way for you to ensure your pet receives the veterinarian-recommended foods he or she needs to be healthy.

For more information about the pet health care services North Paws Veterinary Clinic offers for your pet or to schedule an appointment at our animal hospital in Maple Grove, please contact us.