Educational Articles

Medical Conditions

  • Cats do cough, but not as often as other animals. Retching or gagging is often confused with a cough in cats. A cough is an expiratory effort producing a sudden, noisy expulsion of air from the lungs.

  • One of the most common injuries to the knee of dogs is tearing of the cranial cruciate ligament (CCL). This ligament is similar to the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in humans. There are actually two cruciate ligaments inside the knee: the cranial cruciate ligament and caudal cruciate ligament. They are called “cruciate” because they “cross” over each other inside the middle of the knee.

  • Crop infections are common in pet birds, especially baby birds that are being hand fed. While not usually fatal if treated early, crop infections can be serious and result in a complete loss of appetite.

  • Cushing's disease is a condition in which the adrenal glands overproduce certain hormones. The medical term for this disease is hyperadrenocorticism. There are three types of Cushing’s disease, each of which has a different cause. Identifying the cause is important because the various types of the disease are treated differently and each has a different prognosis.

  • Treatment with this drug involves an initiating phase and a maintenance phase. The initiating phase arrests the disease and restores the dog to a more normal state. Some of the clinical signs, especially increased food and water intake, should stop within the first 1-3 weeks.

  • Skin cancers are fairly common in cats, but cutaneous lymphoma is quite uncommon. Only about 3% of lymphoma cases in cats occur in the skin.

  • Cyanosis is defined as a bluish discoloration of the skin and mucous membranes of the body, caused by inadequate oxygen levels. Treatment will depend upon the underlying reason for the low oxygen levels.

  • Dogs, like people, can develop a variety of bladder and kidney stones. Bladder stones (uroliths or cystic calculi), are rock-like formations of minerals that form in the urinary bladder, and are more common than kidney stones in dogs. A somewhat rare form of urolith in the dog is composed of cystine crystals.

  • Cystitis is a general term referring to inflammation in the urinary bladder. The term cystitis does not imply a specific underlying cause. In cats, diseases of the lower urinary tract (bladder and urethra) are often grouped under the term feline lower urinary tract disease (FLUTD). The initial diagnosis of FLUTD is based on the identification of signs of lower urinary tract inflammation.

  • By definition cystitis means inflammation of the bladder, and the term is used as a general description for any disease that causes inflammation.