The prevalence of Lyme disease is on the rise both in dogs and people in West Michigan. Our annual screening test for heartworm also checks for the presence of tick-borne diseases, and we are seeing an increase in dogs testing positive for Lyme. The disease is spread by deer ticks, and we hear every day from clients about seeing more and more ticks in their environment. Protection from ticks for our dogs is critical in avoiding exposure to this disease (preventatives like Simparica, Bravecto, Parastar Plus). In addition to preventatives, the Lyme vaccine works with your dog's immune system to protect them if they are exposed. We believe this one - two punch of preventing exposure and providing a safety net with the vaccine is the best protection from Lyme disease.
To help more dogs be fully protected from Lyme disease we will be holding our first Lyme Vaccine Clinic at our hospital for our clients of record. The Clinic will be held after hours Wednesday, September 25th, 2019 from 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm. The Lyme vaccine ONLY will be administered at that time by our doctors on a first come, first serve basis at a cost of $43. You can pre-register for this clinic by calling our office at (616)791-2011. If your dog has not previously been vaccinated for Lyme disease, they will need to have the vaccine boostered in 3-4 weeks, then annually thereafter. We will not be addressing other health concerns or providing other services during this time. If your pet needs additional vaccines or has other health concerns, please schedule an appointment during regular office hours. We will hold a second Lyme Vaccine Clinic three weeks later to booster this vaccine at the same low cost of $43.
Is the Lyme vaccine necessary for all dogs? Previously when ticks were less prevalent, we recommended vaccinating sporting or active dogs more likely to be exposed to ticks. Due to our location and the current data on tick numbers, we are now recommending the Lyme vaccine as a core vaccine. We have had great success at keeping ticks off our dogs with preventative products. However, they lose efficacy if they are used inconsistently, we forget to give/apply them, the tablet isn't fully consumed, or with gaps in coverage. Ticks can cause year-round problems. We want the vaccine to be your dog's protector against kidney disease and/or painful arthritis that can be difficult to completely control.
As tick populations grow, they can show up where we least expect. Our technician Sara Jo found a deer tick on her daughter in her own home.
More information can be found here by searching "Lyme disease".
We love when our patients are able to showcase the superstars that they are! Rockie did such a good job showing us how he gets his teeth brushed at his Wellness Appointment, and we wanted to share his success with all of our friends. Here is what his humans, Jan and Al, had to say about Rockie's tooth brushing:
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4268 Three Mile NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49534
Monday, Wednesday, Friday: 8:30 am to 6:00 pm
Tuesday, Thursday: 8:30 am to 6:00 pm
After hour emergency consultations are available to clients of record until 10:00 pm. Our main line will direct to the doctor on call.