We’ve Moved!!

Well, it’s been a long time coming, but we’ve finally moved into our brand new, state of the art facility. Located at 7708 State Road 52, Hudson, we’re just one mile west of our old location on State Road 52.

Our new facility is almost 10,000 square feet, giving us much more room to serve our clients and their pets than we ever had in our old, 2800 s.f. facility. We now have nine exam rooms, whereas our old office only had three, which kept us from keeping pace with our busy practice. We can now service our patients much more quickly and efficiently, decreasing wait times, and greatly improving the overall experience for our clients.

In addition to just additional space, we’ve also added:

  • A state of the art, pressure controlled surgery suite
  • Complete digital radiology (X-ray) and ultrasound room
  • Upgraded and expanded grooming facilities
  • Four treatment tables, as opposed to just one in our previous office
  • A private access, discrete and comfortable euthanasia, visitation, and hospice room
  • Expanded lobby area for client and patient comfort
  • Large training area for puppy obedience classes (coming soon)
  • Advanced conferencing facilities for employee training and education
  • Discrete, dedicated parking for both clientele and employees
  • Easier access and egress at the signaled intersection with Majestic Dr.

And there’s so much more, that it’s impossible to list everything here.  Stop by to check us out, and we’re sure you’ll be happy with the service and experience you encounter at our new office. We look forward to helping you and your pet very soon!    😊

A Man and His Friend.

Man with dogA man and his dog were walking along a road.
The man was enjoying the scenery,
When it suddenly occurred to him that he was dead.

He remembered dying and that the dog walking
Beside him had been dead for years.
He wondered where the road was leading them.

After a while, they came to a high, white stone
Wall along one side of the road.
It looked like fine marble.

At the top of a long hill, it was broken by a tall arch
That glowed in the sunlight. When he was standing before it, he saw a magnificent
Gate in the arch that looked like mother-of-pearl and
The street that led to the gate looked like pure gold.

Pearly Gate

He and the dog walked toward the gate, and as he got
Closer, he saw a man at a desk to one side.

When he was close enough, he called out,
“Excuse me, where are we?”

“This is Heaven, sir,” the man answered.

”Wow! Would you happen to have some water?”
The man asked.

”Of course, sir. Come right in, and I’ll have
Some ice water brought right up.”
The man gestured, and the gate began to open.
“Can ,” gesturing toward his dog,
“come in, too?” the traveller asked.

”I’m sorry, sir, but we don’t accept pets.”

The man thought a moment and then turned
Back toward the road and continued the way
He had been going with his dog.

After another long walk, and at the top of another
Long hill, he came to a dirt road leading through a
Farm gate that looked as if it had never been closed.

There was no fence.

Farm Gate

As he approached the gate, he saw a man inside,
Leaning against a tree and reading a book.
”Excuse me!” he called to the man.
“Do you have any water?”

”Yeah, sure, there’s a pump over there,
Come on in.”

”How about my friend here?” the traveller
Gestured to the dog.

”There should be a bowl by the pump,” said the man.

They went through the gate, and sure enough, there
Was an old-fashioned hand pump with a bowl beside it.

The traveller filled the water bowl and took a long
Drink himself, then he gave some to the dog.

When they were full, he and the dog walked back
Toward the man who was standing by the tree.

”What do you call this place?” the traveller asked.

“This is Heaven,” he answered.

”Well, that’s confusing,” the traveller said.

”The man down the road said that was Heaven, too.’”
”Oh, you mean the place with the gold street and pearly
Gates? Nope. That’s Hell.”

”Doesn’t it make you mad for them to use your name like that?”

”No, we’re just happy that they screen out the folks who would
Leave their best friends behind.”


Pet Names and Cultural Icons

I’ve often commented to owners about some of the names of pets I see in our practice. There are the usual Molly’s and Buddy’s and Lady’s, but then there is a second group of pets that are named after the in vogue cultural icons of the day.

These cultural icons can be singers, or athletes, or – most commonly – movie characters, but the common denominator is that they have recently risen to prominence, and the vast majority of the public have heard of them.

Common names we see today include Elsa, Anna, and Olaf from Frozen, and from a few years ago,  Sid, Manny and Diego from Ice Age. For a while I saw a lot of Tigers for Tiger Woods. And recently I saw a Tukka. For those of you who are NOT from Boston, Tukka Rask is the very, very good goalie for the Boston Bruins. You have to be a hockey fan for that one; luckily I am, and the owner was shocked I knew where the name came from.

Dr. Tony with Gilligan
Dr. Tony with Gilligan

I was reminded of this recently when a long-time client brought in her new Boston Terrier puppy, Gilligan. Now you may wonder how Gilligan refers to a cultural icon, but there’s a story behind it. I was a young child when our family got our first “family pet.” It was a male Boston Terrier, and the year was 1966, and the TV show Gilligan’s Island was at its peak. My parents allowed my siblings and me to name him, and much to their chagrin, we named him Gilligan. Gilligan was the only animal we had until I was well into high school, and so he was my first and only pet for a long time.

Ever since then, any Boston Terrier I see in the office is immediately called a “Gilligan dog.” It’s just a fun little game we play, as Boston’s are all very friendly, and they all remind me of my first Gilligan. And so, for a long time I had a client who brought her old Boston, Brodie, in for me to take care of. Per usual, Brodie was called a “Gilligan dog” by me and my staff every time he came in. Brodie lived a long and healthy life until we eventually had to put him down last year.

This client swore (like so many clients do) that she would never have another dog, as losing them is just too painful. However, after just two short months she had already gone out and picked out a new Boston Terrier puppy. Having brought Brodie to our practice for so many years, she new full well that every Boston in the practice was (un)officially called a Gilligan dog. And in honor of my first pet she officially named him Gilligan.

Gilligan at 14 weeks old
Gilligan at 14 wks old

We’re all thrilled, as he is friendly and playful beyond words. He gives all “Gilligans” a good name, and is a great ambassador for the breed. And now everyone in her community knows what a “Gilligan dog” is.

I’m sure that pet owners will continue to name their pets after the cultural stars of the day long after I’m gone. But it’s funny how life turns, and an innocent choice made by four clueless kids in 1960’s Ohio has come full circle, and now there’s a new Gilligan to carry on an old tradition.

Learn About Toxic Plants for Pets

Lily Tox
All parts of the Easter Lily are toxic to cats,
and can cause renal failure and death.

The Hudson Library is hosting a free University of Florida Pasco Cooperative Extension seminar titled “Plants NOT for Your Pets”.  The seminar is being held July 7th from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Hudson Library, 8012 Library Rd.  The seminar will cover both indoor and outdoor plants that are toxic to pets, and will focus on dogs and cats. To pre-register, visit www.eventbrite.com and search on Pasco County Cooperative Extension. Space is limited, so register early.

Visit Us This Saturday at the Paws-ta Party for Pit Bull Happenings Rescue

Come see us at the Paws-ta Party, and help support the Florida Pit Bull Happenings Rescue. Besides us, there will be other animal vendors, live music, raffles, pet treats, food and fun. All proceeds go to help support the Florida Pit Bull Rescue.  Pawsta Party

Date:  Saturday, March 14, 2015
Time:  Noon til 4:00p
Place:  Mezza Luna Pizzeria and Restaurant
5749 Main Street
New Port Richey, FL

Free Nail Trims!

Come see us at our Acupet booth and we’ll trim your dog’s nails for free.  We’re looking forward to seeing everyone at this event, and helping a great cause at the same time.   🙂

Visit Us This Sunday at the Paws-ta Party for Pit Bull Happenings Rescue

Come see us at the Paws-ta Party, and help support the Florida Pit Bull Happenings Rescue. Besides us, there will be other animal vendors, live music, raffles, pet treats, food and fun. All proceeds go to help support the Florida Pit Bull Rescue.  Pawsta Party

Date:  Sunday, February 15, 2015
Time:  Noon til 4:00p
Place:  Mezza Luna Pizzeria and Restaurant
5749 Main Street
New Port Richey, FL

Free Nail Trims!

Come see us at our Acupet booth and we’ll trim your dog’s nails for free.  We’re looking forward to seeing everyone at this event, and helping a great cause at the same time.   🙂

Hip Dysplasia and Joint Issues in Dogs

There are a number of ways to prevent and/or treat a dog or cat with hip, bone, and joint issues ranging from hip dysplasia to arthritis.   For the sake of time and effort, this article will focus on hip dysplasia, as it is the most common of all the hip, bone and joint issues.

Dog breeds that normally develop hip dysplasia are large to giant sized breeds. However, hip dysplasia can also appear in mixed breeds or crossbreeds that weigh over 30 pounds.

Hip dysplasia x-ray
Early, mild hip dysplasia in a Labrador Retriever.

It is one of the most common genetic conditions known in dogs. More than one gene is responsible for the deformity of the hip joints. Treatment can be expensive, often requiring corrective surgery. There is a fair degree of argument in the scientific journals regarding the causes of hip dysplasia, and whether it’s more of an environmental problem or a genetic issue. It has been our experience that genetics are the key driver of hip dysplasia in dogs. To the degree that environmental factors play a role they all can be lumped into the category of diet in the first year of life. We’ll broach that subject in depth in later articles.

Being a primarily genetic issue, it is important to remember that in most cases, the symptoms of hip dysplasia appear before the puppy is 13 months old, although in theory they can present when the dog is older. We very frequently encounter owners who bring in their large breed dogs who are 7 or more years old, and think the dog’s rear leg weakness is due to bad hips. Almost without exception, those dogs have other joint issues than hips. The most common joint issues in these older dogs are knee problems – such as torn anterior cruciate ligaments – or spinal issues, such as spondylosis.

Common Breeds

The most common breeds known to be prone to hip dysplasia include:

  • Labrador Retriever
  • Chesapeake Bay Retriever
  • Golden Retriever
  • Australian Shepherd
  • German Shepherd
  • American Staffordshire Terrier (or AmStaff)
  • Bullmastiff
  • Mastiff (taller than the bullmastiff)
  • Great Dane
  • Rottweiler
  • Standard Poodle
  • Giant Schnauzer
  • Akita
  • Chinese Shar-Pei
  • Chow Chow
  • Dogue de Bourdeax or French Mastiff
  • Newfoundland (Newfies)
  • Greater Swiss Mountain Dog
  • Bernese Mountain Dog
  • Kuvasz
  • American bulldog
  • Argentine Dogo (or Dogo Argentino)
  • Neapolitan Mastiff
  • Alaskan malamute
  • Samoyed
  • Briard
  • Puli (or Hungarian Puli)
  • Saint Bernard
  • Old English Sheepdog

Uncommon Breeds

These are basically dogs that are squarely built and have large appetites. If a dog is known to have one or more of these breeds in their ancestry, then it is important they are not allowed to get overweight.

A High Impact Naturopathic Remedy

Located below is a simple naturopathic remedy to treat hip dysplasia and other hip, bone, and joint related issues.  These ingredients and more are all included in our custom-formulated No Painful Dogs joint health supplement.


  1. Glucosamine
  2. Green Lipped Mussel (Perna canaliculus)
  3. Chondroitin sulfate
  4. Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM)
  5. Omega 3 & 6 Fatty Acids

Other Naturopathic Remedies

Some of the other alternative, herbal, and naturopathic remedies that can help alleviate the signs and symptoms of hip dysplasia include the following. We’ll be discussing some of these in future posts:

  • Churchuhuasi
  • Turmeric
  • Devils Claw
  • Horsetail
  • Celery Seed
  • Dandelion,Yucca
  • Magnolia
  • Chamomile
  • Yellow Dock
  • Ginger
  • Coconut Oil
  • Lactoferrin
  • Acai Berry
  • Beta Glucan Supreme
  • Barley Sprouts
  • Spirulina
  • Colostru
  • Agaricus Blazei
  • Turkey Tail
  • Reishi

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving! to all our friends at Acupet Veterinary Care. As we all struggle to dig our way out of the massive economic hole our masters in Washington, DC have dug for us, it’s always good to remember that although our condition here in the U.S. is deteriorating almost daily, we’re still better off as a citizenry than the vast majority of peoples around the world. I’m reminded of this almost daily, as I talk to my daughter serving in the Peace Corps in Burkina Faso, Africa, one of the poorest countries in the world.

And so, Thanksgiving is always my favorite holiday, as no matter what religion or creed one celebrates, and even if you honor no given deity, it is still a time we can all join and give thanks for all the many blessings we have, starting with our families and our wonderful pets. So enjoy the day and remember to give thanks, and if you can, do your share to help the less fortunate.

Turkey at ThanksgivingIn the meantime, in the spirit of the day, here are some fun facts about turkeys from VeganPeace.com:

  • Turkeys are large birds related to pheasants, and date back nearly 10 million years. Wild turkeys are native to wooded areas of North America, and are the only breed of poultry native to the Western Hemisphere. They were first domesticated in Mexico and brought to Europe in the 16th century.
  • Turkeys are able to adapt to a wide variety of habitats. However, most wild turkeys are found in hardwood forests with grassy areas.
  • Wild turkeys can fly for short distances at speeds up to 55 miles per hour. On the ground they can reach speeds of 25 miles per hour. Domesticated turkeys usually weigh too much to be able to fly. Their weight is about twice the weight of a wild turkey.
  • The carancle is a brightly colored growth on the head and upper neck. The snood is the flap of skin that hangs over the turkey’s beak. The wattle is the flap of skin under the turkey’s chin.
  • The bare skin on the throat and head can change color from flat gray to shades of red, white and blue when the turkey becomes distressed or excited.
  • The gizzard is a part of the stomach that contains tiny stones, which helps them grind up food for digestion.
  • Wild turkeys have dark feathers which help them blend in with their habitats. Domesticated turkeys have been bred to have white feathers.
  • Male turkeys have black, hairlike feathers on their breast called beards. Some female turkeys have them too.
  • Turkeys have great hearing , but no external ears. They have a field of vision of about 270 degrees and are able to see in color, but they don’t see well at night. They can see movement almost a hundred yards away. They have a poor sense of smell, but a good sense of taste.
  • Wild turkeys often spend their nights in trees on low branches, preferably over water to help protect them from tree-climbing predators. They will fly to the ground at first light.
  • Male turkeys will start making their gobbling sound before sunrise and continue through most of the morning. Hens make a clicking sound.
  • Wild turkeys spend most of the day searching for food like seeds, wild berries, small insects and acorns.
  • The worst predator of the wild turkey is the raccoon. Raccoons will catch and kill young turkeys and also attack a hen’s nest and destroy the eggs.
  • Turkeys are social animals. They enjoy the company of other creatures, including humans. They love having their feathers stroked.
  • In the spring, male turkeys puff up their bodies, spread their tail feathers, and grunt and make their gobbling sound to attract as many females as possible.
  • After mating, the female turkey prepares a nest under a bush in the woods and lays her eggs. She will lay one egg each day until she has a complete clutch of about 8 to 16 eggs. The eggs are tan and speckled brown, take about 28 days for the chicks to hatch. After hatching, the babies will flock with their mother all year. The first two weeks they won’t be able to fly and the mother will roost with them on the ground.

And here are some fun Thanksgiving facts, courtesy of History.com:

  • Three towns in the U.S. take their name from the traditional Thanksgiving bird, including Turkey, Texas (pop. 465); Turkey Creek, Louisiana (pop. 363); and Turkey, North Carolina (pop. 270).
  • Benjamin Franklin wanted to make the wild turkey, not the bald eagle, the national bird of the United States.
  • Originally known as Macy’s Christmas Parade – to signify the launch of the Christmas shopping season – the first Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade took place in New York City in 1924. It was launched by Macy’s employees and featured animals from the Central Park Zoo. Today, some 3 million people attend the annual parade and another 44 million watch it on television.
  • Tony Sarg, a children’s book illustrator and puppeteer, designed the first giant hot air balloons for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in 1927. He later created the elaborate mechanically animated window displays that grace the facade of the New York store from Thanksgiving to Christmas.
  • Snoopy has appeared as a giant balloon in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade more times than any other character in history. As the Flying Ace, Snoopy made his sixth appearance in the 2006 parade.
  • The first time the Detroit Lions played football on Thanksgiving Day was in 1934, when they hosted the Chicago Bears at the University of Detroit stadium, in front of 26,000 fans. The NBC radio network broadcast the game on 94 stations across the country – the first national Thanksgiving football broadcast. Since that time, the Lions have played a game every Thanksgiving (except between 1939 and 1944); in 1956, fans watched the game on television for the first time.
  • According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Minnesota is the top turkey-producing state in America, with a planned production total of 46.5 million in 2011. Six states – Minnesota, North Carolina, Arkansas, Missouri, Virginia, and Indinia – account for nearly two-thirds of the 248 million turkeys that will be raised in the U.S. this year.
  • The National Turkey Federation estimated that 46 million turkeys – one fifth of the annual total of 235 million consumed in the United States – were eaten at Thanksgiving.
  • In a survey conducted by the National Turkey Federation, nearly 88 percent of Americans said they eat turkey at Thanksgiving. The average weight of turkeys purchased for Thanksgiving is 15 pounds, which means some 690 million pounds of turkey were consumed in the U.S. during Thanksgiving in 2007.
  • Cranberry production in the U.S. is expected to reach 750 million pounds in 2011. Wisconsin, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Oregon and Washington are the top cranberry growing states.
  • Illinois, California, Pennsylvania and New York are the major pumpkin growing states; together they produced 1.1 billion pounds of pumpkin in 2010. Total U.S. production was over 1.5 billion pounds.
  • The sweet potato is most plentifully produced in North Carolina, which grew 972 million pounds of the popular Thanksgiving side dish vegetable in 2010. Other sweet potato powerhouses included California and Mississippi, and the top producing states together generated over 2.4 billion pounds of the tubers.
  • According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the largest pumpkin pie ever baked weighed 2,020 pounds and measured just over 12 feet long. It was baked on October 8, 2005 by the New Bremen Giant Pumpkin Growers in Ohio, and included 900 pounds of pumpkin, 62 gallons of evaporated milk, 155 dozen eggs, 300 pounds of sugar, 3.5 pounds of salt, 7 pounds of cinnamon, 2 pounds of pumpkin spice and 250 pounds of crust.


Join Us This Sunday at Barktoberfest!

BarktoberfestCome join all of us from Acupet Veterinary Care for a great time at the 7th annual Barktoberfest, this Sunday at Sim’s Park in New Port Richey.

What:  Barktoberfest 2014
Where:  Sims Park, Downtown New Port Richey
When:  Sunday, October 26, 2014
Time:  11:00a.m. til 3:00p.m.

There will be lots of pet friendly businesses and booths, as well as activities for the kids. Live music and food and fun are all on tap. And bring your pet to our booth and get her nails trimmed for free.

The event supports local pet rescue groups, and it’s all for a great cause. So hopefully we’ll see you there Sunday.   🙂