Frontier Village Veterinary Clinic’s Blog

2016 Marks the 10th World Rabies Day, a Milestone in Rabies Prevention.

cp-dxrawuaa9x8tWorld Rabies Day is this month (WED, SEPTEMBER 28), and if your pet isn’t vaccinated for it yet, there is no better time than now! What is rabies you ask? It is a viral disease that can be transmitted through saliva; commonly a bite or scratch from one infected mammal to another. That’s right, I said “mammal,” not just a dog or cat. Rabies is a zoonotic disease which means that you can get it too.

The virus attacks the Central Nervous System causing severe neurological symptoms, ultimately causing the victim to die. According to the Global Alliance for Rabies Control, Rabies is one of the deadliest diseases on earth, with a 99.9% fatality rate once clinical symptoms appear. Although the fatality rate is high, there is a treatment for humans that works if you get it before symptoms start. It’s called post exposure prophylaxis, otherwise known as PEP. Aggression, drooling, staggering, and seizures are some symptoms that are observed in animals. Rabid wild animals may only exhibit unusual behavior.

Why should you vaccinate your pet for rabies? Every year hundreds of people are forced to do the PEP treatment due to potentially being exposed to rabies, which is costly and stressful. The best way for us to protect our friends and family is to vaccinate our pets since they are most likely to come in contact with wild animals. In every state, the law states every pet owner is to have their pet vaccinated for rabies.

“2016 marks the 10th World Rabies Day, a milestone in rabies prevention. Since it began in 2007, the rabies community have aligned to make World Rabies Day a global phenomenon. In that time, its life-saving rabies prevention messages have reached millions of people in over 100 different countries. This year’s theme is Rabies: Educate. Vaccinate. Eliminate.”  – World Health Organization

As a practice, Frontier Village Veterinary Clinic is teaming up with Washington State University (WSU) to raise funds toward helping to eliminate rabies from every country in the world. A portion of the revenue from every rabies vaccination given at our clinic will be donated towards resources and education. The WSU Rabies Vaccination Program team vaccinates an average of 300 dogs each day in east Africa. They visit 180 villages every year in seven districts adjacent to the Serengeti National Park. Because of the program, the vaccination zone – a cordon sanitaire – is rabies free. The goal is to use the rabies-free vaccination zone as a model in other parts of Africa and Asia.

Educate. Vaccinate. Eliminate. Celebrate.

  • Post written by Sabrina – Veterinary Assistant at Frontier Village Veterinary Clinic

WorldVets – FVVC Team Members Travel to Honduras

This month brought a unique travel opportunity for our lead technician Christina, and one of our associate veterinarians, Dr. Weeks. They both participated as volunteers for WorldVets, a non-profit organization that operates field service projects (spay/neuter campaigns) throughout the world.

11070823_10152618986466571_1246095033338377754_nThe two describe their unique experience: “We traveled to Roatan, Honduras with a group of 15 people made up of veterinarians, technicians, and assistants. We performed a total of about 215 surgeries in only 3 days! It was such a rewarding experience to be able to provide those services to the dogs and cats in that developing country. The owners of the dogs and cats were so grateful to be able to bring their pet in for both a consultation with a veterinarian and surgery.”

The animals of the island of Roatan do not get much veterinary care, as they do not have access to the same type of facilities as we have here in the United States. Teamwork was essential to being able to operate with the high volume of patients! Many people would line up out the door at once, and even wait hours to get their pet spayed, neutered, or just get a consult with the veterinarian.

1450898_10152618986096571_8435643468189273910_nChristina notes, “We met many different people – they brought their cats in laundry baskets, pillow cases, blankets, and wrapped in leashes; dogs were led in by a multitude of different chains, strings, even fabric knotted together. A couple of smaller dogs hitched a ride home on a motorcycle once they woke up from surgery.”

It was eye-opening for our team members to see the different modes of transportation (many just walked to the clinic) and methods of leading their pets around. Some dogs were brought to the building and just left tied to a chair after being checked in.
Most of the dogs seen around the island seemed to wander the streets or in a close radius to their home, on the lookout for food, water, and wary of other people. Christina and Dr. Weeks could tell the local people cared deeply for their pets, but the limited veterinarian access showed in the pet’s status. Fleas and ticks were rampant, and skin disease was a common occurrence.

Christina reflects, “The experience made me grateful for the access we have up here to pet food, veterinary care, and the mild weather!”

Continuing Education on The Caribbean Sea #VetTechLife

Continuing Education is an important part of many industries, and the veterinary field is no exception. One of our own licensed technicians actually attended a CE (continuing education) lecture series featured on a cruise ship in the Caribbean!

Veterinary Technicians are a vital part of the veterinary industry. They become licensed by passing a National Board Exam and then a Washington State exam. After successfully passing these they must keep up their knowledge by acquiring continuing education credits – currently Washington State requires 30 hours every 3 years.

One of our own technicians, Christina, attended a lecture series entitled “CE on the Sea” and was featured on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship, March 17-21. This four-day cruise left Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, sailed to Cozumel, Mexico and returned to the states.

The lectures were presented during the day and encompassed many topics. Pain management, dentistry, updates on CPR, anesthesia, the acute abdomen patient, dystocia, and EKG analysis were among the topics offered. About 300 technicians attended this event, from all over the United States and England!

The program did allow for a little leisure time, as the day the ship docked in Cozumel there were no lectures held and Christina was able to sail on a Catamaran for a short snorkeling tour on Cozumel! If you haven’t been to the Caribbean before, the clear green-blue waters are breathtaking and the colorful tropical fish that abide around Cozumel are a sight to be seen!

The cruise ship itself, the Independence of the Seas, was impressive; it carries around 4,000 passengers, and features 3 pools, as well as a Flowrider, rock climbing Wall, and ice skating rink. The unlimited food (all included) is also something to mention, especially when the soft serve ice cream machine is right on the swimming deck.

Moral of the story – CE is a necessary requirement, but can be a fun experience!

Companion Animal Parasite Council CareCredit Trupanion American Veterinary Medical Association