Services

APPOINTMENT

The Bristol County Veterinary Hospital offers a full range of veterinary services to care for your pet. 

Comprehensive Wellness & Diagnostic Exams

The physical exam of your pet and beloved family member is at the heart of our practice. In today’s world, it is easy to start viewing the body as separate pieces (i.e. an eye problem, an ear problem, etc.). After all, that is what human medicine has taught us. However, your pet’s body has many systems that WORK TOGETHER. That is why when we examine your pet, we are looking at everything from head to toe to make sure that nothing is missed and to look at your beloved family member as a whole and not a sum of individual pieces.

You will see our veterinarians look at your pet’s eyes, their ears, their teeth, their gums, listen to their heart, their lungs, feel their abdomen for abnormal lumps or bumps, look at their skin for lesions, parasites, tumors, feel their lymph nodes for swelling and check their joints for inflammation, range of motion or pain. We do this all while talking to your pet and trying to make them as comfortable as possible. The ideal exam is giving the animal exam and having the animal think they are simply being loved on and petted.

When the exams are done, we will discuss things that are obvious, things that may need to be treated and discuss further work-up such as cytology, laboratory testing, radiographs, and/or ultrasound if something needs to be looked at closer.

Laboratory Services (Blood & Urine)

Laboratory testing is essential in helping us determine your pet’s overall systemic health without the need for invasive and expensive procedures. In fact, for a large percentage of pets, abnormalities will show up on labs prior to a patient being symptomatic. This is why we recommend that we regularly test your pet during wellness exams or when we suspect your pet may have a health issue. Think of lab work in animals in human terms. When most cats are 7 years of age or older and dogs are 5 years of age or older, they are equivalent to us in our 40’s and 50’s. It is at this stage in our life, and in the lives of our pets that laboratory values can give us valuable information to stave off, pre-treat, or catch chronic illnesses, diseases, etc. prior to it affecting the quality of life of our furry loved ones.

BCVH has the ability to do this. We have a full-service in-house diagnostic lab that allows us to perform chemistry profiles, complete blood cell counts, electrolyte level measurements, urinalysis tests, and cytology evaluations. With our laboratory, we have the ability to analyze how well your pet’s internal organs and processes are functioning immediately. Because sometimes your pet may need a very specialized test, or, a combination test, we also have the ability to send your patient’s bloodwork to our outside laboratories for additional testing. We tailor our laboratory work-up to the individual needs of our patients.

Ultrasound

Ultrasound is an invaluable, complementary diagnostic tool to radiographs that can assist the veterinarians in localizing diseases such as cancer (by finding tumors), differentiate between chronic and acute diseases of the kidneys or liver, can diagnose urinary diseases such as crystalluria, bladder stones, and can help in the assessment of foreign bodies and other gastrointestinal diseases. Routine ultrasounds can be provided by some of our veterinarians on staff but we also have the option of offering board-certified ultrasounds by our traveling cardiologist, Dr. Mark Stamoulis.

Cardiology/Echocardiograms

Dr. Mark Stamoulis, DVM, DACVIM (Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine in Cardiology), received his DVM from Tufts Veterinary School in 1988. He completed a small animal internship followed by a cardiology residency at the Animal Medical Center of New York in 1992. He has published articles on pacemakers in cats and heart disease in ferrets.

Dr. Stamoulis visits our clinic every other week to do echocardiograms, board certified abdominal ultrasounds, review holtor monitor reports and to consult with our Veterinarian staff on our cardiac patients. This gives our clients and their pets the ease of having consistent follow-up with a cardiologist that doesn’t involve travel.

Board Certified Complex Orthopedic & Soft Tissue Surgery

Dr. Dave Clark, DVM, DAVCS (Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Surgery), has a traveling surgery practice for Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Prior to this, he was the Head of Surgery at Oklahoma State University (hence the cowboy boots).

Dr. Clark is able to perform board certified surgeries such as cruciate repairs, patella luxations, mass removals, anal gland surgeries, and many more. Because of this, clients have the ability to have surgery here at our hospital receiving the top level of surgery from a boarded surgeon without having to travel to a specialty clinic.

Complex Dermatology Cases

Dr. Clair McCaffrey, DVM, while not board certified, also spent an extra year of training as an intern in different specialty rotations. It is here where she fell in love with skin cases. Because of her love of dermatology and the satisfaction she gets in alleviating the itch for her furry patient and irritation for her human client, she has continued her education by spending one day a week shadowing board-certified dermatologists at Tufts Veterinary School and at Angell in Boston. Therefore, she can do a special skin consult and plan for those that may have complicated skin issues and are unable or unwilling to see veterinarian dermatologist.

Dentistry (Those Teeth and That Breath)

As time goes on, the importance of dental health is being realized more and more in human medicine and as well, in the world of veterinary medicine. Going back to looking at the body as a whole, it only makes sense that if beloved furry family members have infected teeth, gum disease, or other oral problems or infections, the potential for those infections to create issues in other parts of the body (such as the heart, the kidneys, etc.) is there. Other things besides infection can go on in the mouth as well such as oral tumors, foreign bodies, misalignment of the teeth or extra teeth.

For this reason, we at Bristol County Veterinary Hospital believe in providing top of the line dental care to our clients. The mouth and the teeth will always be looked at in our wellness and diagnostic exams but if something is seen, a dental, or further dental imaging may be suggested.

It is important to note that if we suggest these procedures, we follow-through with the highest of standards. The reality of assessing teeth is that only 1/3 of the tooth can be seen below the gum line. Therefore, if there are mobile teeth, pockets, etc. abscesses can be missed in 2/3 of the tooth above that gumline. To make sure that these situations are not missed, as part of our dentals, we offer dental radiographs to radiograph all the roots of the teeth. In addition to that, we pride ourselves on being thorough with dental cleanings (cleaning below and above the gum line), extractions when needed, mass removals, and can even start your pet on a maintenance sealant program with products such as Oravet. If, at any time we think your pet’s dental procedure is too complicated for us to handle, or, if we feel your pet will be better suited with a root canal over an extraction, we will refer you to a boarded dentist who can perform these advanced procedures.

As one might imagine, dogs, cats or small exotic pets will not sit still for x-rays of their teeth or cleanings, etc. no matter what kind of bribe we may offer them. For this reason, all our dental procedures are performed under full anesthesia. It is important for full anesthesia to be done because intubation (protection of the airway under anesthesia), prevents secondary complications from dentals such as aspiration pneumonia, and, gives our certified staff the ability to monitor all the vitals of your pet during their procedure. We take anesthesia very serious at our clinic. We use a variety of drugs and dosages of both injectable and gas drugs to suit your pet’s individual needs and health status. This is called tailored anesthesia. In addition to this, there will always be a dedicated anesthesia tech, sometimes the doctor, doing nothing but monitoring your pet’s reactions under anesthesia (EKG, blood pressure, heart rate, CO2 output, respiratory effort, and temperature).

Radiology and Ultrasound

While laboratory work is essential for monitoring the well-being of a pet, it does fall short in diagnosing other chronic or dangerous issues such as heart disease, orthopedic issues, respiratory disease, or, that dreaded disease we all fear, cancer.
These diseases, like other medical diseases, are best treated and handled if caught earlier.

For that reason, we offer our clients full-digital radiographic services (commonly referred to as x-rays). We use the latest in advanced computerized radiology equipment as part of your pet’s diagnostic care. By using digital radiographs, we can easily capture x-rays as a computer file, send them off for a board-certified radiologist to review for a second opinion and we can also store them in your pet’s individual record. Finally, if for those clients that need to take radiographs with them, we have the ability to download your pet’s radiographs (x-rays) onto a CD to take with you.

Canine Vaccines

Vaccines are an essential part of preventative medicine. We as a staff here at Bristol County Veterinary Hospital take into account the risk of vaccination against the risk of getting diseases and will work with each owner, each pet, and their exposure risk to come up with the best vaccination schedule for each individual furry family member. Vaccines we offer at Bristol County Veterinary Hospital and what they are protecting your animal for, are listed below.

Rabies Vaccine – Rabies is a viral disease that affects the central nervous system of mammals. Rabies is transmitted through saliva and blood (bites most commonly) and can be transmitted humans. Massachusetts and Rhode Island law requires protection against the rabies virus through the rabies vaccine. The state laws determine the guidelines and frequency. The initial vaccine is given at 16 weeks of age and is good for 1 year. The vaccine is then boostered within 9-12 months in order to qualify for a 3-year vaccine. Massachusetts and Rhode Island rabies vaccine protocols are slightly different after the dog has qualified for their first 3-year vaccine and are listed below:
Massachusetts: “Once a 3-year, always a 3-year” – As long as your dog’s booster is given within 9-12 months from the initial 1-year vaccine, your dog’s subsequent rabies vaccines will always qualify for a 3-year Massachusetts vaccine and certificate.

Rhode Island: In order to qualify for a 3-year Rhode Island vaccine and certificate, your dog’s rabies vaccine must always be boostered prior to the previous rabies vaccine’s expiration date.

DHPP Vaccine – the components of this vaccination are recommended for all puppies. The DA2PP vaccine is a combination vaccine that protects against the following:
D – Distemper; a contagious, viral disease that affects the respiratory, gastrointestinal and central nervous systems. Puppies ages 3-6 months are extremely susceptible to infection and once infected, this virus contributes toward a high mortality rate. Most puppies infected with distemper will die.
H – Infectious Canine Hepatitis, also known as adenovirus type 1 (Hence the A in DA2PP), is a virus that is transmitted via the urine, feces, or saliva of infected animals. It can affect the liver, kidneys, spleen and lungs. It causes fever, depression, low white blood cell counts and prolonged bleeding times.
P – Parvovirus; a highly contagious virus that has a high mortality rate when left untreated. Signs include lethargy, fever, vomiting, and diarrhea, which causes dehydration. The survival rate of puppies infected with parvo is about 50/50.
P – Parainfluenza; a contagious respiratory infection that is seen in areas with high dog populations, such as boarding kennels, dog parks, and pet stores. It is highly contagious to any dog of any age. Signs of Parainfluenza include coughing, fever, eye, and nasal discharge.

Leptospirosis VaccineLeptosporosis is a rickettsial bacterial disease that is carried by wild animals and is shed through urine. It is not endemic in all parts of the United States but is endemic in this area. Because of the way it is spread, any animal that touches grass outside in any area where wildlife might have been is at risk of contracting it. Leptospirosis can be fatal by causing acute liver and kidney disease. If not treated immediately, it is 100% fatal. Perhaps what is most worrisome about Leptospirosis is the danger to human health. This is a disease people can get from their pets. It can be transmitted to the human owner by contact with the animal’s urine through cuts in their skin or through mucous membranes. Humans too will come down with liver and kidney failure and it can be fatal to them as well. Because Leptospirosis is common in this area, we highly recommend this vaccine on a yearly basis.

Lyme – This vaccine prevents Lyme disease caused by a bacterium called Borrelia burgdorferi. The major vector of Lyme disease in the Northeastern U.S. is the deer tick, Ixodes scapularis. Lyme disease affects a variety of species, including dogs, cats, and people. Contrary to popular belief, in the Northeast, one can get ticks in their yard and not just wooded areas. Up to 95 percent of dogs infected with B. burgdorferi do not develop symptoms (people are much more likely to become ill with Lyme disease). Common symptoms when they do arise, cause fever, inappetence, swollen/painful joints, lameness (limping which may be mild at first, then worsen, and may also shift from one leg to another) and or lethargy. Lyme disease in serious instances can cause kidney disease, ultimately kidney failure and death. Because Lyme disease can cause death, and because ticks are seen during the entire year in this area, aside from monthly flea and tick prevention, we highly recommend the Lyme vaccine for any dog that goes outside.

Bordetella “Kennel Cough” – Bordetella is a bacterial respiratory pathogen that can be spread through the air. It is extremely contagious and causes a goose-like honk in dogs. Although this infection rarely leads to death, it can lead to pneumonia. Dogs that board frequently, visit groomers, go to doggy daycare, or are around many other dogs in a kennel type of situation are at highest risk. The vaccine can prevent breakouts of the infection. We recommend this vaccine for any dog that will be in the above situations. This is considered a lifestyle vaccine. It is important to note that this vaccine is required for any dog that boards with us.

Canine Influenza “Dog Flu” – A respiratory infection caused by the H3N8 canine influenza virus. This virus presents with signs and symptoms similar to those seen in kennel cough, such as coughing, fever, lethargy, nasal and eye discharge and in severe cases, pneumonia and even death. Risks of contracting this disease are based on lifestyle much like Bordetella. Therefore, we recommend this vaccine for any dog whose lifestyle is involves grooming, being around a large group of dogs in a kennel situation, dogs that board, and dogs that attend doggy daycare.

Feline Vaccines

Vaccines are an essential part of preventative medicine. We as a staff here at Bristol County Veterinary Hospital take into account the risk of vaccination against the risk of getting diseases and will work with each owner, each pet, and their exposure risk to come up with the best vaccination schedule for each individual furry family member. Vaccines we offer at Bristol County Veterinary Hospital and what they are protecting your animal for, are listed below.

Rabies – Rabies is a viral disease that affects the central nervous system of mammals. Rabies is transmitted through saliva and blood (bites most commonly) and can be transmitted to humans. While most people think of dogs of being at higher risk of getting Rabies, it is important to note that there are four times more cats being diagnosed with Rabies on an annual basis than dogs. To see how many cases have been reported yearly, go here: https://www.rabiesaware.org/.

Both Massachusetts and Rhode Island law requires protection against the rabies virus through the rabies vaccine. The state laws determine the guidelines and frequency. The initial vaccine is given 16 weeks of age and is good for 1 year.

For cats, we have both the 3-year rabies vaccine should you want your cat to qualify for 3-year coverage AND the 1-year Purevax Vaccine for rabies.

The Purevax Vaccine for Rabies for cats is a vaccine without any adjuvants. This means that your cat is less likely to get any vaccine-associated sarcomas (a vaccine cancer cats are pre-disposed to) from this vaccine. While the incidents of vaccine-associated sarcomas are very rare with the 3-year vaccine, some people may prefer this added protection for their pets.

The 3-year vaccine is the same used for dogs. State requirements can be seen above.

FVRCP – This is a combination vaccine that is recommended for all cats and protects against the following viruses listed below:

FVR – protects against feline viral rhinotracheitis; a respiratory infection that is caused by herpes 1 virus, known as Feline Herpes Virus. This infection is very contagious from cat to cat via the air or contaminated objects. It is not usually fatal, but will either smolder as a chronic disease or lay dormant in the nerves of the upper respiratory passages with intermittent flare-ups.
C – calicivirus; causes a highly contagious upper respiratory infection similar to FVR. This infection commonly causes oral ulcers and cats infected may remain as carries who shed the virus, infecting other cats.
P – panleukopenia virus (feline distemper); a severe, extremely contagious infection (similar to Parvovirus in dogs) that can be fatal. It causes fever, anorexia, vomiting, diarrhea, and dehydration.

Feline Leukemia (FeLV) – The leukemia virus is a contagious disease that causes immunosuppression and is one of the leading infectious causes of death in cats. Transmitted from cat to cat through saliva, transmission can occur by grooming, sharing food and/or water bowls. For this reason, we recommend all cats be tested for FeLV when 12 weeks of age or older. If your cat will be indoor only, will not be exposed to other cats, this vaccine may not be necessary. However, if your cat will be venturing outside, coming into contact with other cats of unknown FELV status, this vaccine is highly recommended.

FeLV/FIV Testing – Testing should be performed prior to vaccinating for FeLV, at approximately 12 weeks of age. It is important to acknowledge that any test done prior to 1 year of age can result in a false negative, therefore testing is recommended again once cats are over 1 year.

Abdominal Ultrasound and Complex Internal Medicine Cases

Dr. Aurora Richards-Stipnieks, DVM, while not board certified, spent an extra year of training as an intern in internal medicine. In addition to this, she has completed Beginner to Advanced Abdominal imaging courses for abdominal ultrasounds. For this reason, for mild complex internal medicine cases, and for ultrasounds, should travel to a specialist not be feasible, Dr. Richards is willing and ready to work on your complex internal medicine cases, including some oncology cases.

Providing compassion, care, and kindness to pets and their people.

ADDRESS

288 Fall River Ave
Seekonk, MA 02771
Click here for directions.

HOURS

Mon: 8:00 am – 6:00 pm
Tues: 8:00 am – 8:00 pm
Wed: 8:00 am – 6:00 pm
Thurs: 8:00 am – 8:00 pm
Fri: 8:00 am – 6:00 pm
Sat: 8:00 am – 4:00 pm
Sun: Closed

CONTACT

Phone: 508-336-3381
Fax: 508-336-4528
Email: email@bristolcountyvet.com

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