Friday, October 28, 2016

AVMA Vet Clinic Live!

Our very own Jim Mosley demonstrating one of our Smartphone Endoscope Adapters at AVMA's Vet Clinic Live!

To learn more about our Smartphone Adapters, visit us online at or give us a call at (845) 277-1700!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

What a Four Year Old Taught Me About Vet Med

By Ryan Llera, DVM
Guest Author on

"'Hello? It's me. I was wondering if after all these years you'd like to meet." Okay, so maybe it sounds better coming from Adele. But you know who else wants to meet? Your younger carefree self. For many of us in the veterinary field, that version of ourselves is lost. We find ourselves in a worsening spiral of stress, depression, and apathy. Maybe it sounds like a trip down the rabbit hole but maybe it's better described as a "swirling vortex of terror."

It wasn't always like this. I'm an assistant instructor for my taekwondo club and our students range anywhere from four years old to 50-plus. For the little kids, we're not majorly teaching them to be the next Bruce Lee but rather encouraging listening, respect, and being active as part of a healthy lifestyle. But those kids grow up and some of them choose to help the younger kids.

One student-assistant in particular I've noted is very attentive to those newer students who need a little extra help and it warms my heart to see him pass on the knowledge. Something else I noted is a mutual respect between the students and the younger assistants. And none of these kids I'm speaking of is even a teenager yet! I remember it being like this when I was a kid. Couldn't our politicians learn something from this?

Now we're grown up and many people have joined the veterinary field. Veterinary medicine is tough. It's a hard job but somebody has got to do it. That special someone is you! It can be very easy to get lost in the day to day shuffle of sick patients, angry clients, and clinic dynamics. You may want to give up; maybe you change jobs, maybe you change professions, or maybe you decide there's only one way out of this mess. 

The Kindergarten Complex
It doesn't have to be that way. Don't lose hope - those kids I was talking about earlier are wiser than we give them credit for. As kids, we are innocent. We don't know hatred, bullying, or anger. I like to call this the Kindergarten Complex. Think back to that time... we wanted to be friends with everyone. We shared and we were kind. We were apologetic to each other. This is what we need to get back to.

Let's find our younger selves. Your five year old self is out there and along the way, your friends will help you out. Yes, everyone should have a Mad Hatter, Cheshire Cat, and wise caterpillar - just like Alice. Where will you find your own collection of varied sages? Right in your own clinic or family! Who knows you better and is concerned about your well-being?

If you work in the veterinary field: veterinarian, technician, client services, management, kennel staff ... be respectful and friendly to your co-workers. Treat them courteously. Try to be helpful at work and don't put anyone down because of their position. Be loyal and don't gossip behind their backs. If you think they are having trouble or seem distressed, reach out to them. let them know you are there to talk. if you are the one be affected, know that there are people that care about you and places you can get help. Chances are one of your co-workers may be experiencing the same feelings.

For those of you who are not in the veterinary field (friends, family, clients), know that we are trying our best for you. Don't participate in online gossip or internet shaming of anyone in the veterinary field. Once in awhile, let us know that we are appreciated. Anybody can ask how another person is doing; listen to them, empathize with them. Nobody has to be alone in this. Just being nice can make a huge impact on someone's day and life. And that might make all the difference."

Click here for the original article

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Robotic Horse Scans Could Hold Promise for Human Health

By Kathy Matheson

Chief of Surgery Dr. Dean Richardson, right, and Medical Director Dr. Barbara Dallap Schaer guide a horse into a room to undergo a computerized tomography scan at the University of Pennsylvania's New Bolton Center Hospital for Large Animals in Kennett Squares, PA. Veterinarians hope an innovative type of CT scan can advance health care for horses and possibly be adapted for people.

"Veterinarians hope an innovative type of CT scan can advance medical care for horses and be adapted for humans, eliminating the need for people to lie still inside a tube.

Robotic CT at the University of Pennsylvania's veterinary school allows a horse to remain awake and standing as scanners on two mechanical arms move around it. The resulting high-quality images, including some in 3D, for the first time offer detailed anatomical views of the animal in its normal, upright state.

That's a huge difference from the standard CT for a horse, which requires administering anesthesia, placing the animal on its side and maneuvering a scanning unit around the affected area. Not all body parts fit in the machines.

Robotic CT "is much less stressful," said Dr. Barbara Dallap Schaer, medical director of Penn Vet's New Bolton Center. "It's a pretty athletic even for horses to recover from general anesthesia."

The New York-based company 4DDI created the Equimagine system with components from robot manufacturer ABB. First unveiled at Penn last spring, 4DDI now has orders for more than a dozen units at equine facilities around the world, according to CEO Yiorgos Papaioannou.

"The word is spreading," Papaioannou said.

At Penn, the large white robotic arms are installed at a barn at New Bolton Center, the vet school's hospital for large animals in the Philadelphia suburb of Kennett Square. Horses are given a mild sedative and walked into the facility for a scan that lasts less than a minute. CT, or computed tomography, gives pictures of soft tissues that X-rays can't. While traditional CT requires the subject to be still, this new system compensates for slight movement. Eventually, vets hope they'll be able to capture CT images of a horse running on a treadmill.

The ease of imaging means more horses can get preventive scans, said Dr. Dean Richardson, chief of surgery at New Bolton. As it stands, he said, many owners are reluctant to have their horses anesthetized for a diagnostic procedure because recovery can be treacherous. As the animals emerge from unconsciousness and woozily struggle to find their footing, they risk catastrophic injury if they stumble.

"So the whole beauty of this technology, we hope, is that we're going to be able to scan much greater numbers of patients much, much earlier in the process of things like stress-related injuries in a racehorse," Richardson said.

For humans, the technology could be helpful when dealing with squirming children or claustrophobic adults. Doctors could also get clearer views of, say, spinal problems in a standing patient instead of relying on CT performed while the person is lying down. Penn's translational research team has partnered with other hospitals to look at the possibilities.

"This is an interesting concept - the ability to image in your natural state," said Dr. Paul Uppot, an assistant professor of radiology at Harvard Medical School who is not involved in the research. "It does offer something that doesn't currently exist in the market (for humans)."

Equimagine's base cost is $545,000, according to Papaioannou, though he said some new customers are getting the equipment in exchange for a per-scan fee. The company plans to make another version of the system for smaller animals, he said.

Penn's system was made possible through a donor, said Dallap Schaer, noting the cost was comparable to standard CT scanners. Overall cost for the images will be less than CT scans that require anesthesia, she said.

Dennis Charles, of Allentown, brought his horse Bert to Penn Vet for an MRI earlier this year, before robotic CT was available. The procedure required anesthesia, and Charles said he was incredibly nervous watching a wobbly Bert regain consciousness afterward.

Last month, the horse again needed imaging but was able to have robotic CT. Charles, who described the robotic system as looking like something out of "Star Wars," said the scans assured him Bert's leg injury had healed.

"They get really precise images," he said. "I think it's a tremendous piece of equipment."'

Click here for the original article.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Stray Kitten Walks Into TV Studio And Introduces Himself On Air.

By Stephen Messenger
The Dodo

"Here's a c at who knows how to make the news - by interrupting it.

This week, during a live broadcast of the Turkish television program "Good Morning Denizli," an uninvited visitor decided to drop by the studio to make a surprise appearance.

Smack dab in the middle of presenter Kudret Celebioglu's reading of the news, a random stray kitten leapt onto the desk - and headed straight to his computer.

Much to Celebioglu's credit, he did more than just take the sudden feline interruption in stride. In the moments that followed, he used the opportunity to encourage viewers to show compassion for homeless cats in the community:

"As you know, winter is coming and cold weather is passing through," he said. "It's an unexpected guest, [but] we should cuddle him. We should open the doors to stray cats and give them water and food [...] We all should take care of them somehow."

And that's just what he and his colleagues did.

After the broadcast ended, the kitten was given a meal and a warm place to cuddle - and then so much more. As the Daily Sabah reports, an employee at the studio decided to adopt the cat, giving him the name Husnu.

Now that's a good news story."

Click here for the original article.

Animal magnetism: Your dog can make you feel better, and here's why

By Marlene Cimons
Special to The Washington Post

"Wayne Pacelle has a demanding job as president and chief executive of the Humane Society of the United States. This is one of the reasons he brings Lily, his beagle mix, to work with him. He is convinced that animals "are a necessary ingredient in our emotional well-being," he says. "I deal with many stressful issues, and I see terrible cruelty," he adds. "But when Lily puts her head on my lap, it calms me."

Pacelle can't scientifically document the positive effects he gains from his connection with Lily (and Zoe, his cat.) But his experience supports what researchers who study human/animal interaction have concluded: Pets, especially dogs, seem to be good for our health.

"Dogs make people feel good," says Brian Hare, an associate professor of cognitive neuroscience at Duke University, who points out dogs now are found in some courtrooms, exam study halls, hospitals, nursing homes, hospice-care settings, classrooms, airports and elsewhere, "and their only job is to help people in stressful situations feel better. Many people seem to respond to dogs in a positive way."

Scientists believe the major source of people's positive reactions to pets comes from oxytocin, a hormone whose many functions include social bonding, relaxation and trust and easing stress.

Research has shown when humans interact with dogs, oxytocin levels increase in both species. "When parents look at their baby and their baby stares into their eyes, even though the baby can't talk, parents get an oxytocin boost just by eye contact," Hare says. "Dogs have somehow hijacked this oxytocin bonding pathway, so that just by making eye contact, or [by] playing and hugging our dog, the oxytocin in both us and our dog goes up. This is why dogs are wonderful in any kind of stressful situation."

Miho Nagasawa, a postdoctoral fellow at Jichi Medical University in Shimotsuke, Japan, has found that mutual gazing between humans and dogs increases the owners' oxytocin levels. This helps decrease anxiety and arousal levels, and slow the heart rate. "The positive interaction between humans and dogs via mutual gazing may reduce stress activity for each other," she says.

About 43 million American households have dogs and about 36 million households have cats, according to the 2012 U.S. Pet Ownership & Demographics Sourcebook, a publication of the American Veterinary Medical Association.

History provides numerous stories - some of the probably apocryphal - of the therapeutic benefits of dogs, both physical and psychological. In ancient Egypt, for example, people believed that a dog's lick could heal sores or lesions (there may be a basis in fact for this, because dogs' saliva contains antibacterial and antiviral substances, as well as growth factors); in 19th-century mental institutions in England, pets were sued to calm residents; in 1880, former Civil War nurse Florence Nightingale wrote that a small pet "is often an excellent companion for the sick, for long chronic cases especially."

In modern times, science has stepped in to provide a clearer link. A 1980 study found that more heart-attack victims with pets survived beyond the one-year mark than those without, a finding that was reproduced 15 years later.

Other studies have shown that pet ownership seems to decrease coronary-disease risk factors involving blood pressure, cholesterol and triglycerides, among other things.

A 2009 study, for example, looked at 4,435 people, more than half of them with cats, and found a significantly lower risk of heart-attack deaths for the cat owners.

Another study, which looked at 240 married couples, found lower heart rates and blood pressure among those with pets than among those without. The pet owners also experienced milder stress responses and a faster recovery from stress when they were with their pets rather than with a spouse or friend.

As for staying healthy in general, it's no surprise that having a dog can help you stay more active. One study involving more than 2,000 adults found that dog owners who regularly walked their dogs were more physically active and less likely to be obese than those who didn't own or walk a dog.

Another, which looked at more than 2,500 people ages 71 to 82, found that regular dog walkers tended to walk faster and for longer periods each week than those who did not have dogs to walk. They also showed greater mobility inside their homes.

Some research suggests that childhood exposures to dogs and cats can protect against developing allergies and asthma later in life, possibly because the contact with pet microbes occurs while the immune system is still developing.


Denise Harris of Columbia, Md., has had rheumatoid arthritis for 30 years; when she's feeling ill, she often naps with her Irish wolfhounds, Carrick and Fearghus. She says Fearghus mothers her when she's getting sick, sensing what's coming before she does and herding her to the bed or sofa. "Sure enough, a couple of hours later, I'm running a fever," she says. "He literally watches over me till the fever breaks."

She calls Carrick her crutch. "When I fell in the blizzard last winter, he ran to my side, stood over me until I could sit up, let me use him to pull myself up, then supported me, letting me lean against him all the way into the house and to the sofa."

Of course the hounds are good for her health, she says. For one thing, she takes long walks with them. "And I can always count on Fearghus for a hug when I'm feeling down," she says.

Both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health are interested in the potential health value of having pets: NIH first raised the human/pet connection nearly 30 years ago, recommending that scientists take pets into account when conducting health research, and the agency has funded a number of studies into the impact of pet ownership.

Lori Kogan, an associate professor of clinical sciences at the Colorado State University College of Veterinary Medicine and the editor of the Human-Animal Interaction Bulletin, says that pets can be especially helpful for people facing emotional difficulties. "Dogs have a positive impact on depression and anxiety," Kogan says. "When someone loses a spouse or partner, for example, having a dog provides a reason to get up and be social," she says. For many older people, "it's the only relationship they have."

In one study, researchers concluded that women living alone were "significantly more lonely" than those who were living with pets, and noted that having a pet might "compensate for the absence of human companionship."

This may explain the value many people find in therapy dogs, which are trained to help people deal with worry, unhappiness and anxiety, and have been found to even reduce the perception of pain.

While dogs are most frequently used for therapy purposes, says Mary Margaret Callahan of Pet Partners, the group's registry of available therapy animals also includes cats, horse, rabbits, guinea pigs, llamas, potbellied pigs, birds and domesticated rats.

Therapy dogs are widely used to help veterans cope with post-traumatic stress disorder and have been used to help calm autistic children. In June, therapy dogs were brought in to relax swimmers competing in the U.S. Olympic trials in Omaha suffering from pre-race jitters.

Therapy golden retrievers from Lutheran Church Charities were sent to Orlando in June to comfort survivors as well as those who lost loved ones in the Pulse nightclub shooting that left dozens dead. A New York funeral home provides mourners with a dog that even "prays" with them.

A recently released study found that therapy pets can help first-year university students suffering from homesickness and possibly help in lowering college dropout rates.

Of course, there are times when the emotional interaction with pets can be difficult. When they misbehave or are sick (or worse), we feel it.

"Dogs are just like kids: They can be the source of enormous joy and enormous worry," says Hare, who has two children and two dogs. "But overall, despite the worry and pain, most dog owners I know, including me, would say that there is overwhelming benefit."'

Click here for the original article.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Bald eagle rescued from car grille after Matthew passes.

By Andreas Preuss

The bald eagle was named Matthew after the recent hurricane that tore through the Caribbean and southeastern United States.

"In the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew's path through Florida, it may have been the oddest call to 911 operators: a bald eagle had gotten stuck in the grille of a car.

A posting on the Clay County Sheriff's Office Facebook page Saturday reported the odd emergency request from a driver in the area near Jacksonville.

Pictures showed the national bird of the United States stuck in the precarious position.

After his rescue, the eagle was handed over to an animal rehab group.

Clay County officials said the bird was pulled out and turned over to an organization in nearby Talbot Island, Florida, called B.E.A.K.S - Bird Emergency Aid and Kare Sanctuary.

BEAKS' owner, Cynthia Mosling, told CNN that the eagle appears to be a mature male, at least 7-years-old.

Mosling said that a driver at an intersection noticed an odd shape in an oncoming car's grille. Mosling said the driver thought it was a prop -- but then noticed a head moving.

The driver then chased down the car, notified the driver that he had a bird stuck in his grill and then called 911, according to Mosling.

The bird's rescuers named him Matthew, in honor of the storm.

Matthew is "standing up and alert" and doesn't seem to have any serious injuries, Mosling said.

Mosling, who evacuated inland this week, says she plans to bring Matthew back to her sanctuary, give him a checkup and will let him go if all is good."

"A citizen had a bald eagle fly in front of his vehicle and the bird became lodged in the grille of the vehicle. Clay County Sheriff's Office and Clay Fire Rescue personnel responded and rescued the eagle from the grille. The bird is alive and was turned over to the B.E.A.K.S. Wildlife Sanctuary. Great Job by all involved."

Click here for the original article.

Thursday, October 13, 2016


By Rachael Berkey
The Nerdist

"In case you were ever in doubt, the online world is actually powered by cats. And at one school in the United Kingdom, there's a cat running the school's world and teaching students and teachers alike about their environmental footprint through augmented reality. Meet Cinder, the cat who runs things at Trumpington Community College in Cambridge.

As originally reported by The Creator's Project, Cinder is the avatar of Trumpington Community College's building management system. She was created by a collective of architects, creative technologists, and designers at Umbrellium to engage students and teachers alike with their environment over the course of their education. Now that she is live, the community within this state of the art school interacts with her via an augmented reality 'mirror' in the main hall as well as their Chromebooks, where she pops up and pesters students to be fed (just like a real cat!). She feeds on solar energy that the building collects in real-time helping students learn about sustainability and the ways their school is impacting the environment around them.

Part mascot, part avatar for the sophisticated building management system, Cinder is a constantly growing and changing part of the environment around her. She responds to students gestures in the augmented reality screen, even rubbing against them as you can see in the photo up above, and sometimes just running off to find the solar energy that keeps her fed. Over time, she will be able to change her appearance and even has "Easter egg" accessories for the students to discover. For example, there's a very charming birthday hat in the video below to give you an idea.

"We wanted to find a creative way to help bring the building environment to life and give students a unique and engaging experience of the world around them. We are delighted that the students and staff have taken Cinder as their own digital pet," Umbrellium's founding partner, Usman Haque, said in a press release. While Cinder was created with a very real purpose of building monitoring and innovation in mind, she's also struck a cord with the staff and students at the school. Teachers talk about how engaged their students become while involved in the design process and how that interest has continued now that Cinder is live with students seeking out opportunities to use their Chromebooks in hopes that she will appear even when they aren't in class.

It will be very interesting to see how she grows and changes in the coming years and how much she can teach the students as she goes. Who knows? Maybe we're only a few innovative steps away from this kind of cat technology.

What do you think of Cinder?"

Click here for the original article and video.

Zoo Orangutan Is So Baffled By Magician's Card Trick.

By Stephen Messenger
The Dodo

"Raj the orangutan may not have the life that nature intended him, but at least he still hasn't lost his sense of wonder.

Magician Matt G recently dropped by the Great Ape's enclosure at the UK's Colchester Zoo to break the monotony of Raj's day-to-day life in captivity. In a video captured of the visit, Mike G is shown performing a rather mind-boggling trick for his audience of one: passing a playing card to Raj, inexplicably, through the solid glass wall keeping them apart.

Clearly baffled by the trick, Raj then tries to replicate it - giving the card a few taps with is makeshift magic wand.

We, like Raj, have no idea how this trick was performed - but we're glad to know he got to keep his souvenir.

Matt G Mentalist Facebook: "Think he liked his little gift"

For some folks, it might be difficult to find common ground with orangutans, and other animals fated to a life in captivity. In this moment of magic, however, it's more obvious than ever that we're not so different after all.

Indeed, if you think to wonder is a human quality, then count Raj as one of your kin."

Click here for the original article and video.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Columbus Day

We will be closed
Monday 10/10/16
in observance of Columbus Day.

We will re-open Tuesday 10/11/16 at 9 am.

"For decades and decades, American history books and school teaching, told us Christopher Columbus discovered America. What those books and teaching did not give credit to was the fact that Native Americans were already here. Native Americans truly discovered America. It also gave little mention to the fact that Nordic explorers had traveled down the eastern cost of Canada thousands of years earlier.

Today, we celebrate Columbus Day for what it accurately is. Columbus did discover the existence of the New World for Europeans who until then, believed the world was flat and ended somewhere in the Atlantic. And, the focus is more upon the discovery of the "New World", and less upon Columbus himself.

Did You Know? 
-Columbus Day is sometimes referred to as "Discoverer's Day".
-Columbus discovered America in 1492. He originally set sail on August 3, 1492, but had trouble with the ships, stopping at the Canary Islands for a month. The ships left the Canary Islands on September 3, 1492.
-He traveled with three ships: The Nina, The Pinta, and The Santa Maria.
-While Columbus was Italian, he could not find funding in Italy, so he turned to the King of Spain. King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella provided the funding.
-Christoper Columbus did not land on the U.S. mainland. He landed on an island in the Caribbean. While many believe he landed on San Salvador, there is still debate on which island he originally landed on."

Can a dog heal your life? Pets make you healthier, fitter and less stressed, says research.

By Jill Eckersley

"Want to be healthier, fitter and feel less stressed? Then get a furry friend, says Jill Eckersley.

When you come home after a difficult day at work, there's nothing better than a tail-wagging canine looking pleased to see you to cheer you up.

Animal lovers feel instinctively that pets are good for us but could there be some scientific truth to this? After all, early man often depended on signals from animals for survival, suggesting that either he and his family were safe or that there was some sort of threat out there.

Since ancient times dog saliva was considered to be medicinal as it was observed that dog's wounds healed after they had licked them. Roman ladies carried lap dogs which were supposed to soothe stomach aches.

Centuries later Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing, observed that having a pet to care for was effective in reducing anxiety in both children and psychiatric patients.

She wrote in her famous handbook Notes on Nursing, published in 1859, that being with animals could help patients recover from illness.

Since the early 1970's pets have been prescribed to improve people's social skills, ease anxiety, improve mood, make independent living easier and reduce loneliness, supplying all the advantages that pet owners instinctively believe in.

Further research studies have also found that contact with animals can benefit humans' physical and mental health in numerous ways.

Pets and Physical Health

Over the past 30 years animal-assisted therapy has been taken more seriously by the medical profession. Many research studies have looked at how owning or being in contact with animals can affect:

  • The number of times people go to their GP with minor ailments such as coughs, colds and hay fever.
  • The human stress response.
  • Blood pressure levels.
  • Cholesterol and triglyceride levels which impact heart health.
  • The speed at which people recover from serious illnesses including heart attacks
  • The strength of the human immune system and its ability to fight infection.

On a very basic level this could be because people with animals tend to be more active - and we all know that exercise is good for us. Regular exercise for at least 30 minutes a day, five times a week is the minimum recommended by doctors in order to reduce the risk of common killers such as heart disease, strokes and some forms of cancer.

Active people are also less likely to suffer from Type 2 diabetes and asthma. What better excuse to get out there and get walking than becoming a dog owner? Rain or shine, our canine friends are always ready for a walk. Playing games with them can elevate "feel good" hormones such as serotonin and dopamine. Since the 1980's doctors have been finding that contact with animals can reduce stress in humans.

Stress symptoms such as high blood pressure are reduced, for example, when patients in a dentists' waiting room are able to watch a tank of tropical fish. Stroking a dog or having a dog in the same room can increase levels of oxytocin, also known as the "cuddle hormone", which plays an important role in the formation of emotional bonds.

As well as helping to reduce the stress symptoms which may lead to heart attacks, the presence of animals may also help patients recover from them. A 1980 study showed that dog owners are more than eight times as likely to be alive a year after their heart attack than those who did not have a pet. And it isn't just dogs.

In 2008 another study found that cat owners had a 30 per cent lower risk of death from heart attack than those who did not own a cat. There is also the possibility that contact with animals can benefit the human immune system.

It is known that the incidence of allergic diseases and conditions such as eczema have risen over the past 30 years but the reason for the increase is unknown. One possibility is the "hygiene hypothesis" which states that because we're so much cleaner and germaware than previous generations, our bodies don't get a chance to build up immunity to certain things.

It is known that people who grow up on farms, obviously having more than average contact with animals, who are exposed to animal dander (hair, fur and saliva) are less likely to develop allergies.

Research in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology showed that babies brought up with dogs showed fewer signs of pet allergies or eczema and they also had fewer colds and ear infections in their first year of life than babies in pet-free homes.

Pets and Mental Health

In 2011 a joint research project between Cats Protection and the Mental Health Foundation looked at more than 600 people with mental health problems, some with cats and some without.

The project found that 87 per cent thought that their cat had a positive impact on their well being while 76 per cent said their cat helped them cope better with everyday life.

Dogs are also more than just loving companions to those with depression, anxiety and other mental health issues.

Animal campaigners say the benefits of dog ownership on mental health include:

  • Dogs are a calming presence and owners are drawn to patting and stroking them.
  • The touch of a dog's fur is soothing.
  • Dogs offer troubled people unconditional love. They don't have an agenda and don't care if their owner is old or young, plain or beautiful.
  • Being loved by a dog can raise self-esteem.
  • Being a dog owner is excellent for reducing feelings of isolation and loneliness. Dog owners and walkers always meet others.
  • Dogs respond instinctively to body language or tone of voice rather than actual words which can be useful for those who have trouble expressing themselves.
  • Dogs can make you laugh!"
Click here for the original article.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Dwarfism Doesn’t Keep Hank the Lab From His Therapy Dog Duties

By Heather Marcoux

"Thanks to double hip surgery, the Labrador Retriever overcomes the rare condition and brings joy to others.

He's only 1 1/2 years old, but Hank the Labrador Retriever has a few things in common with the senior citizens he visits as a therapy dog - namely, hip surgery and limited mobility. Diagnosed with dwarfism when he was just 4 months old, Hank is shorter and slower than other yellow Labs, but he has just as much personality as the big dogs.

"He smiles all day long," explains Hank's human, Allison Best. "He's really taught me and my family and friends to just take what you're given and work with it."

Best and her boyfriend Jeff picked Hank up from a local breeder near St. John's Newfoundland, Canada when he was just 8 weeks old. The new pet parents quickly fell in love with their adorable pup.

"He looked normal, just like all his siblings," Best recalls. "For about a month, he was just your typical tiny puppy, and when he got to be about 3 months old we started to notice that he wasn't really growing as fast as he could."

At first, the couple wondered if maybe Hank was just the runt of his litter, but when his little legs took on a bowed appearance, Best knew something more serious was happening.

"He'd take a few steps and have to sit down, and then he'd get up and take a few more and have to sit down," she says.

Best took Hank to the vet repeatedly, but the cause of his condition wasn't obvious. She was told the dog's short limbs could be the result of bad breeding or an unusual cartilage formation, but nothing was definitive. Eventually Hank was referred to the only orthopedic specialist in the province, Dr. Bailey at the Veterinary Specialty Centre of Newfoundland and Labrador.

"She took full-body X-rays that showed every bone in Hank's legs that was supposed to be straight was actually an 'S' shape," explains Best. "I broke down and cried because I couldn't believe that's how he was living. Even his little toes were in 'S' shapes."

Blood work and genetic testing confirmed a diagnosis of dwarfism (a condition Hank's pet insurance policy did not cover). According to Best, the orthopedic specialist hadn't seen a case quite like Hank's in 20 years of practicing veterinary medicine. At almost 7 months old, he could only walk a few steps before looking to his people to pick him up. His best bet for future mobility was a bilateral femoral head ostectomy.

"[It's a] double hip surgery where they removed the head of the femur that connects into the ball joint of the hip so that his bones weren't rubbing together anymore," says Best.

The typical recover time for the procedure is about six to eight weeks, but because Hank's leg bones are so malformed, he took about seven months to recover. He had to learn how to walk all over again - and he did it in front of an Instagram audience of more than 20,000 followers.

"I originally started Hank's Instagram account just because dwarfism is so rare," says Best. "I thought maybe I would find someone who has gone through the same thing with their dog.

Instead, Best found a generous international community of dog lovers who provided emotional support, encouragement, and even financial relief. After sharing a Go Fund Me campaign on Instagram, Best received nearly $4,000 to put toward Hank's vet bills (which have exceeded $10,000 in his short life).

Wanting to give back through the Instagram community, Best got involved in fundraising for animal rescues and says her next dog will likely come from a local shelter. While Best focuses on helping animals, Hank has been focused on helping people, joining the St. John Ambulance Therapy Dog program.

"He's completely certified now and visiting at long-term care facilities," says Best, who hopes to get Hank cleared to volunteer with children after he completes a year of visiting adults.

Hank can't climb stairs or run like a typical Lab, but he can walk on his own (especially toward the scent of bacon). He may not the the dog Best had in mind when she picked up her puppy, but the proud dog mom can't imagine life without him now.

"You just deal with it, they're your baby," she says."

Click here for the original story.

It's a wrap!

By Portia Stewart
Editor, Team Channel Director

"A veterinarian turns bandages into art to embrace the art of healing.

If art is good for the soul, perhaps it's good for healing too. In the daily drag of practice, it's easy to be overwhelmed by sick and injured animals and the strain of difficult clients and pet owners who can't afford to pay for their pets' care. But Jenny Buley, DVM, found a way to make bandages more than, well, bandages. These mini pieces of art bring a lightness to the workday and put smiles on pet owners' faces too.

"I started doing striped bandages, then graduated to small designs like paw prints and stars,' Dr. Buley says. "Then one day a Yorkie came in with severe bite wounds over his thorax from an encounter with a German Shepherd. The Yorkie had jumped over his smaller brother to protect him. He needed a pretty large bandage, and I decided to give him a superhero look. The response I got was so positive. This owner, who came in distraught and panicked, left with a grin on her face."

Sine then, Dr. Buley has continued to express herself through the designs. "Clients laugh, share the designs with other clients in the lobby, thank me, and I believe that they get a sense that I care a lot about their animal," she says.

Her favorite design so far? "It has to be David Bowie's face a la Ziggy Stardust. I did not think it was going to turn out but as I got further along with it, it really came together," Dr. Buley says.

Ready to give it a try? Dr. Buley says some of the simpler designs take just a few minutes. The more complicated ones, like the dragon and ninja turtle, can take a few hours. "I work on them during down time between appointments so I don't just finish a design in one stretch," she says."

Click here for the original article.

National Golf Day!

It's National Golf Day!

Our resident golfers, 
Anthony and Rich,
 will be celebrating today!

Monday, October 3, 2016

Need something repaired?

Need to send something in to be repaired?

With E.S.S. repairs, there is no need to make any arrangements or get a "special code" to send your instrument to us.
 Just follow our simple and easy method!

1. Send us your broken instrument!

-Fill out our Speed-Up Repair form.
 (Which can be found on our

-Carefully box up your scope or equipment.
*For flexible scopes: place the instrument in the padded case it originally came with, then tape the two halves closed with packing tape to prevent the case from opening during transit.
*For rigid scopes or other instruments that don't have a padded case, carefully wrap the instrument in bubble-wrap so that it's cushioned from any shock.
*Place the protected instrument in a well-padded shipping box (NOTE: It should have a minimum of two inches of space between your instrument and all sides of the box, then the space should be filled with packaging material for cushioning)

-Ship your instrument via FedEx or UPS to:
ESS, Inc.
ATTN: Service Dept.
3 Fallsview Lane
Brewster, NY 10509.

2. Inspection!

When we receive your instrument we will:
-Fax you an itemized list of repairs 
-Provide you with the repair turnaround time
-Advise you on the best course of action to take with your instrument.

3. Ship it back!

After inspecting and repairing your instrument, we will send your instrument back to you via FedEx.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

How U.S. Military Veterinarians Are Helping Haiti’s Pets.

By Alan De Herrera

"U.S. Army's Veterinary Corps and the NGO World Vets vaccinated hundreds of dogs and spay-neutered dozens of dogs during a recent trip to Haiti.

As dusk approached, the smell of dust and burning trash filled the air while we drove through the crowded streets of Haiti's capital, Port-au-Prince. We were traveling to a remote village an hour outside the city. Six years after the devastating earthquake in 2010, Haiti still remains the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere.

I tagged along with members of the U.S. Army's Veterinary Corps and the NGO World Vets. This was their last stop on an 11-country tour through Latin America as part of the U.S. Navy's 2015 Continuing Promise humanitarian mission. We were here to help Haiti's pets.

A member of the U.S. Army's Veterinary Corps and the NGO World Vets treats a puppy.

On arrival, the team immediately set up its makeshift M.A.S.H unit as curious villagers with pets eagerly waited. Syringes were filled, and foldout operating tables were assembled. A translator shouted, "Bring your pets forward for vaccinations." A large line formed as more villagers began pouring in with cats in small bags, puppies in wheelbarrows, and larger dogs wearing wire leashes.

"Haiti is a unique situation," explained Major Marc Knobbe, U.S. Army lead veterinarian in charge of the mission. "There is no veterinary infrastructure here, even though there is an estimated 1.2 million dogs in Haiti."

The mission's goal was to vaccinate, spay/neuter, and deworm as many cats and dogs as possible over the course of two days. This was the last day of the program before our hospital ship, the USNS Comfort, would disembark and sail back to the U.S., completeing its five-month mission. There were only a few hours of sunlight left in the day to treat as many pets as possible.

A Haitian boy with puppies.

A crowd of curious people surrounded the operating tables while the team worked. The Army is the only branch in the service that has an active duty veterinary corp. The CP-15 team consisted of three Army veterinarians, two Army veterinary technicians, and members of World Vets. Each dog was vaccinated for rabies in addition to being given an oral dewormer. Many of the dogs were in fragile condition, suffering from malnutrition, mange, fleas, and wounds. Those healthy enough were spayed or neutered.

"On-site surgeries differ from those conducted in a sterile facility," Major Knobbe said. "In order to be more mobile, we use inhalation anesthesia. Working out in the open surrounded by dirt was very challenging, trying to keep things as clean as possible. We have to assess each animal prior to making the decision to operate or not. It must be in the best interest of the animal.

When CP-15 was complete, the U.S. Army veterinarian civil action programs had vaccinated 257 dogs and cats and performed 24 spay/neuter procedures."

Click here for the original article.