RainTree Veterinary Hospital Pet Health Updates for Courtenay and Comox pet owners

Pet health education and awareness of issues that have a direct impact on your pet's well being are important to us. We want you to make the right choices in helping your companion live an active, long and healthy life. We hope these pet health updates can have a positive effect! 

Pet Allergies

April 08, 2024

Allergies are a common problem affecting our cat and dog companions. The two main types of allergies we encounter, and that will be discussed here are food allergies and environmental allergies. It can often be difficult to differentiate between the two. What are allergies? Allergies are an exaggerated immune response to food or environmental triggers, meaning the body produces antibodies against substances (allergens) that other animals can tolerate just fine. These antibodies recognize the…

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Hands-Free Radiology

June 27, 2022

What Is Hands-Free Radiology? Raintree Veterinary Hospital has adopted a policy to be ahead of the curve on limiting human exposure to radiation during x-rays. Traditionally in veterinary medicine, pets have been held down by nursing staff for x-rays. We are using the modern approach of hands-free radiology to protect our team from unnecessary radiation exposure. This may involve the use of sedation to help keep patients relaxed for their x-rays. Instead of your pet being constantly held by…

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West Coast Vet - Funding Denied

October 26, 2021

Summary of the article “Additional Funding Denied for BC Veterinary Students Amid Province’s Veterinary Shortage”, by Madison Audeau, BSc. This article was published for the CVMA-SBCV West Coast Veterinary Magazine and was the student liaison chapter for Fall 2021.  https://www.canadianveterinarians.net/documents/west-coast-veterinarian-fall-2021 … Many pet owners in the Comox Valley have noted a recent increase in wait times for appointments at their veterinary clinic. While these issues are…

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COVID-19 and Animals

May 08, 2020

COVID-19 and Animals  … FAQ's For Veterinarians … This document was developed by a working group consisting of Canadian public health and animal health experts, with representation from federal and provincial/territorial governments, the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association, and academia. It takes into consideration past and current research on coronaviruses and COVID-19, as well as expert opinion. The findings and conclusions represent the consensual, but not necessarily unanimous, opinions…

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COVID-19 Information

March 27, 2020

Updated March 11, 2022 … As many know, effective today, the provincial government has lifted the requirement to wear masks in many circumstances, but left it up to the discretion of each business. At RainTree we are so excited to see all of your smiling faces again. We also realize that this pandemic is not quite over yet and the health and well being of our clients remains a top priority. As such, we are lifting the requirement to wear masks in most areas. However; we ask that clients continue…

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Xylitol Toxicity

March 09, 2020

It has come to my attention twice in the last month that xylitol toxicity is much more likely with new products coming onto the market and newer keto recipes for baked goods, so I though it would be a good idea to review the severity of this toxin to your pets. Xylitol is popular as an alternative sweetener to sucrose (table sugar) because it has fewer calories with the same sweet taste. It is found in a variety of food and non food products including sugar free gum, mints, candy, baked goods…

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Introducing An Exciting New Treatment Option

January 11, 2020

A new modality...Platelet Rich Plasma or PRP … We are excited to introduce a new treatment option for our patients to add to our rehabilitation/physical therapy services. PRP is an autologous (from your own body) super concentrate of platelets used to accelerate healing in injured tissues. Platelets play two important functions in addition to helping with blood clotting after injury and they are to: bring white blood cells to the injured area to clean up and to release growth factors that are…

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Marijuana - A Common Toxicity

October 29, 2019

We are presented with a large number of emergencies every year. One of the most common emergencies is the ingestion of toxic substances. Sometimes, the pet owner is aware that the ingestion has occurred and we can spring into action and start the appropriate diagnostic tests and treatment. It becomes more difficult when your pet is exhibiting clinical signs like vomiting, diarrhea, or strange behavior and it is unknown what the pet may have been exposed to. Anything you can tell is of vital…

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Rabies & Bats

September 11, 2019

Rabies is a dangerous zoonotic (spread from animals to humans) disease and human rabies is exceptionally rare in Canada. While rabies is relatively widespread in wildlife in North America, it is quite rare in domestic animals in Canada, and spillover into people is fortunately even rarer still because people have less direct contact with wildlife reservoirs, and because post-exposure prophylaxis is so effective if it is given in a timely manner. Rabies infections are the tragic result of a…

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Physical Therapy in Geriatric Dogs

June 02, 2019

Age is not a disease, but with age come disease.  Many changes happen in the body as we age. These changes affect our pet’s ability to move and enjoy life. Some changes that need to be considered when designing a rehabilitation or physical therapy program are as follows:  … • Decreased maximum heart rate, decreased functional lung reserve and decreased ability to produce a stress response. • Impaired memory, learning and awareness and hearing and vision loss … • Increased hormonal imbalance and…

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Pesky Parasites......

March 28, 2019

Fleas, Ticks and Worms…..oh my! As we welcome the warmer weather of spring, it is also a time when veterinarians all over the country see an increase in parasites, which can cause health issues for our furry friends. So I thought now would be a good opportunity to share some health tidbits on what to be on the lookout for as well as what preventative measures can be taken to protect your pet, as well as what you can do should they become infected.  … Fleas … Just one flea on your pet can cause…

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Oral Health Care

February 23, 2019

February is Dental Health month, so I thought I’d do a little blog on oral health care and reasons to see your veterinarian for oral exams and dental cleanings.  … Plaque is continuously deposited on the surface of the teeth and so, the key to a healthy mouth is to keep the surfaces of the teeth clean.  The gold standard is brushing with a soft tooth brush and approved toothpaste! If plaque is left on the surfaces of the teeth, calcium salts from the saliva deposit and make tartar. Tartar is…

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Senior Cat Care

November 23, 2018

It was brought to our attention that we hadn’t blogged about cats yet. We were so excited to have a Burmese kitten and a Scottish Fold kitten come in the same week. We made up our kitten folders with oodles of information and have been going through those faster than our puppy folders! I thought I’d blog about the most common diseases we see in middle aged to older cats and what to watch for and the importance of early testing and annual exams.  … By far, the three most common diseases we see…

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Common Toxin Emergencies

November 12, 2018

Common Toxin Emergencies … Long weekends always remind me of the most common emergencies seen by veterinarians.     … Dogs, particularly puppies tend to chew things up and ask questions later. Cats are more investigative, so prefer to eat plants rather than food substances.  I thought I’d review a few just to remind you what you should be keeping away from your companions to avoid medical emergencies … Chocolate toxicities are very common, especially around Easter and Christmas. Chocolate is a…

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Our Story

August 22, 2018

Hi! My name is Robin Rainford and I couldn’t be more excited to begin this new adventure as a veterinary practice owner! One of my childhood friends still reminds me of stories of saving an ailing bird and caring for a stray cat while housing her in my shed.  I got my first dog, Cocoa  (a rough collie) when I was 9.  I still remember running around my back yard with her in a wheelbarrow when she was 8 weeks old.  … I have worked in the field of animal health since graduating from St. Clair…

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Canine Rehabilitation

August 22, 2018

For several years, many patients presented with hip and elbow dysplasias, injuries, neurologic conditions and generalized weaknesses due to advanced age or illness and I often found myself frustrated with a lack of knowledge to help these animals. In 2016, I graduated from the Canine Rehabilitation Institute in Colorado and earned the certification of canine rehabilitation therapist. The Introduction to Canine Rehabilitation course teaches in depth anatomy and physiology of all the muscles and…

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