It’s the Season For…


Author: Dr. Clarissa G. Noureddine, DVM, MS, MS

It’s warming up outside, and we can definitely tell the season is changing by what we see coming into the clinic!

Wildlife Babies: Baby birds, bunnies, and squirrels – you name it and you might find it. We get a lot of calls about what to do with orphaned wildlife. Keep in mind – the baby may actually not be an orphan. Often the best thing to do is leave it alone, and keep it safe from any pets in your yard. For baby birds, simply placing them back in their nest can be the most helpful thing to do. The most important thing to remember when assessing a wildlife situation is that your safety is of utmost importance. Wild animals are wild, and they can bite or scratch. They can also carry zoonotic diseases (disease that can be transmitted between animals and humans). Do not attempt to handle wildlife of any sort that can transmit rabies (raccoons, foxes, bats, skunks, coyotes, etc.). If you happen to encounter one of these animals, you should contact Animal Control. Please do not attempt to catch the animal. You should also know that we could not even allow these types of animals into our clinic. You can read up on assessing injured or orphaned wildlife by visiting the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s webpage ‘Helping Injured or Orphaned Wildlife’.

Turtles: Did you know that World Turtle Day is May 23rd? You may have noticed some turtles attempting to cross the road lately. If you happen to move one out of the middle of the road, put it on the other side of the road in the direction it was traveling. If you put it on the side it came from, it will likely just try and cross the road again. Be sure to wash your hands – turtles can carry Salmonella. Thinking about a pet turtle? You should always check laws carefully before claiming a turtle as your pet – there are many listed as endangered, threatened, or protected. As you probably know, our very own Dr. Crawford is our resident reptile vet who also helps out the occasional injured turtle that comes through. Here are some of the turtles we currently have in the clinic:

Snake Bites: North Carolina is home to six species of venomous snakes: Copperheads, Water Moccasins, Canebrake Rattlesnakes, Pigmy Rattlesnakes, Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnakes, and Coral Snakes. In our area, we mostly see Copperheads (Canebrake Rattlesnakes are also possible). Snakebites from copperheads are already popping up in the area, so be mindful when you and your pet are outdoors. Copperheads mate in the spring and the fall. Copperheads tend to be active during the day in the spring and fall, but they become active more at night during the warmer summer months. You can learn more about venomous snakebites by reading our previous blog.

Skin Allergy and Ear Infection Flare-Ups:
Allergy season is in full swing (for humans and pets it seems!). While allergy management can seem frustrating – especially when your pet has severe allergies – we want to help you manage the condition. Addressing allergy issues as soon as they pop up can help get your pet feeling better faster. And, once we know if your pet has seasonal allergies, we can even develop preemptive strategies to prevent or minimize an allergy flare. Already feeling frustrated with your pet’s allergies? Take a look at some of these previous blogs for help – and give us a call so we can work together to get those allergies under control!

Finally Getting Your Pet to Lose That Weight: OK pet owners, Let’s Get Serious About Obesity! Obesity can reduce your pet’s life expectancy. With the cold of winter now past, pet owners seem to be even more motivated to help their pets get active and exercising. Your pet will feel so much better with that extra weight gone. Want proof? Read about how much better Dr. McGlothlin’s dog Rose feels now that she has lost a lot of weight! And, you will be minimizing the risk of numerous health problems like joint disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, inflammation, and the list goes on.

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