Smile for ... Dental Specials!

February is National Pet Dental Health Month. To recognize this and promote the importance of dental health for our animal friends, we are pleased to offer dental specials for both our small-animal and equine patients. Details are below – let us know if you have any questions!

Dental Special for Dogs and Cats
February and March

PVH is offering FREE* full-mouth X-rays for our canine and feline patients during February and March.

Approximately 80 percent of dogs and cats over 2 years of age have significant oral health issues, which can result in pain, suffering and other problems. Many times, a tooth may appear healthy on the surface but can be fractured or infected below the gumline. X-rays allow us to see the tooth root and supportive structures to determine if there are any problems.

*PLEASE NOTE: A $120 to $200 value. Promotion is available only with a full dental cleaning and oral exam.

For details and appointments, please call 360.568.3113 to talk with a PVH small-animal receptionist.


Equine Dental Special
February Only

PVH is offering FREE* oral exams for equine patients during the month of February. 

With regular dental exams, we can identify and address dental issues as early as possible in our horses, including abscesses, ulcers, loose teeth, infected teeth or gums, periodontal disease, and misalignment of teeth. These days, many horses are maintaining functional dentition into their third – and even fourth! – decades of life. And that’s something horse owners and their horses can both smile about.

*PLEASE NOTE: Promotion is only available with vaccine appointments and/or dentals – charges apply if sedation is required.

For details and appointments, please call 360.568.3111 to talk with a PVH large-animal receptionist.

Five New Year’s Resolutions for Your Horse

(From a Veterinarian’s Point of View)

Each year, you make a New Year’s resolution for yourself, but what about what you could be doing for your horse? Your trainer wants you to work on half passes, sliding stops, higher jumps or whatever your discipline may be ... but what does your veterinarian want you to focus on?

  1. Weight: Maintaining your horse’s weight, whether you have an easy-keeper or thin horse, should be high on this year’s priority list. Overweight horses are predisposed to conditions such as equine metabolic syndrome and laminitis. Laminitis can be very difficult to manage and can be career-ending and potentially even life-threatening. For thin horses, the root cause of the problem can be even trickier to diagnose. Is it nutritional, dental or due to another serious disease such as pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction (equine Cushing’s) or cancer?
  2. Dental care: On average, it is recommended that you have your horse’s mouth examined and floated once yearly. Skipping years of oral balancing, performed during the dental float, can potentially lead to serious misalignments such as creating jaw-locking steps, painful hooks and significant periodontal disease.
  3. Preventive care: The importance of vaccines cannot be stressed enough. Did you know that the best time of year to vaccinate for Eastern/Western encephalitis and West Nile is in the spring and early summer? These neurologic diseases are carried by mosquitoes, so it is best to boost your horse’s immunity to these prior to bug season. Another component of preventive care is parasite control. A vast majority of equine parasites are actually carried by a small percentage of horses. Fecal floats quantify how much an individual horse is affected by parasites and have completely changed deworming protocols. Now, deworming is tailored to the individual horse to prevent parasite resistance through unnecessary deworming.
  4. Senior care: Horses are frequently living longer, and our retirees start to require more medical care as they age. Common issues that need to be addressed include deteriorating ligaments and arthritis pain, loose teeth, weight/dietary management, and diseases such as Cushing’s and equine metabolic syndrome.
  5. Regular exercise: Busy schedules create horses that are “weekend warriors” – horses that are ridden hard on the weekends and do minimal work during the week. This makes it hard for horses to build up cardiovascular and muscle strength, and can also predispose them to injury in joints, ligaments and muscles. Could you get out to the barn for a longeing session in the middle of the week?

This year, make it your New Year’s resolution to improve your horse’s health. Buckle down on getting your fat horse trimmed down or your thin horse beefed up. Make it your mission to address dental and preventive care. Start a conversation with your veterinarian on how you can help your older horse’s arthritis or if you need to begin testing for diseases such as Cushing’s. Go the extra mile and put another workout in on your horse. Your equine friend will be sure to thank you later!


Article written by Liana Wiegel, DVM

Located in Snohomish, Pilchuck Veterinary Hospital offers equine ambulatory care, referral hospital services and 24/7 emergency. Call 360.568.3111 to schedule a consultation with one of our equine practitioners.