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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Summary

A questionnaire was mailed to 30 owners of paraplegic dogs who had been caring for their dogs at home for 3 to 72 months. It was designed to collect information on demographic variables, duration of ownership and paralysis, age of the pet, pet/owner relationship, owner expectations and perceptions of the pet's quality of life, problems the pet experienced, effect that maintaining a paralyzed pet had on the owners' quality of life, and whether use of a cart was beneficial.

Significant correlation was found between prior expectations that the pet would lead a high-quality life and perception that the pet, in fact, had a high quality of life during paralysis (r 2 = 0.61, P = 0.01). Owners who had anticipated that extra work would be necessary to care for their paraplegic dog had a more positive attitude toward home care (r 2 = 0.55, P = 0.03).

Overall, owners involved in the study were satisfied with all aspects of maintaining paraplegic dogs at home. Our findings support the feasibility of dedicated owners successfully maintaining small (average body weight, 9 kg) paraplegic dogs at home for extended periods.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To estimate prevalence of intestinal nematode parasitism among pet dogs in the United States and characterize risk factors for infection.

Design—Retrospective period prevalence survey.

Animals—1,213,061 dogs examined at 547 private veterinary hospitals in 44 states from January 1, 2003, through December 31, 2006.

Procedures—Data were obtained from electronic medical records of all dogs that had at least 1 fecal flotation test. Risk factors for intestinal nematode parasitism were identified by means of multivariable logistic regression analysis.

Results—2,785,248 fecal flotation tests were performed during the study period. When results for only the first test in each dog were considered, prevalences of Toxocara, Ancylostoma, and Trichuris parasitism were 5.04%, 4.50%, and 0.81%, respectively. Dogs < 0.5 years old had higher odds of Toxocara and Ancylostoma parasitism, compared with dogs > 5.0 years old; sexually intact male and female dogs had higher odds of parasitism, compared with spayed female dogs; toy dogs had lower odds of parasitism, compared with dogs in other breed groups; and dogs living in the mountain region had lower odds of parasitism, compared with dogs living in other regions.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that age, body weight, sex, breed, and geographic region were risk factors for intestinal nematode parasitism among pet dogs in the United States.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To describe epidemiologic features of pet evacuation failure after a hazardous chemical spill in which residents had no warning and only a few hours notice to evacuate.

Design—Cross-sectional study.

Sample Population—Pet-owning households that evacuated from a hazardous chemical spill with (n = 119) or without (122) their pets.

Procedures—Evacuees were surveyed by mail.

Results—261 of 433 (60.3%) dogs and cats in 241 households were not evacuated. Of the 241 households, 119 (49.4%) evacuated with their pets, 98 (40.7%) evacuated without them but later attempted to rescue them, and 24 (10.0%) neither evacuated their pets nor attempted to rescue them. Pet evacuation failure was most common in households that thought the evacuated area was safe for pets. Risk of pet evacuation failure increased in households with many animals, low pet attachment and commitment scores, and low levels of preparedness. Cat evacuation failure was associated with not having cat carriers. Nearly 80% of households that evacuated with their pets found accommodation with friends and family.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Pet evacuation failure was common and jeopardized pets' health and well-being. Logistical challenges to transporting pets were substantial contributors to pet evacuation failure, whereas not knowing where to house a pet was only a minor concern. Most pet owners seemed self-reliant and acted appropriately towards their pets. Such self-reliant behavior by pet owners should be encouraged prior to disasters as part of an evacuation plan for households. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2001; 218:1898–1904)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate the clinicopathologic features, response to treatment, and risk factors associated with idiopathic neutropenia in dogs.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—11 dogs.

Procedures—Medical records of dogs with idiopathic neutropenia were reviewed. Signalment, history, clinical signs, and response to treatment were recorded and compared with that in dogs with neutropenia attributable to known causes and to dogs without neutropenia (controls).

Results—Compared with dogs with neutropenia attributable to known causes, dogs with idiopathic neutropenia had lower neutrophil counts and were younger. When compared with control dogs, age < 4 years was identified as a risk factor for developing idiopathic neutropenia. In all dogs with idiopathic neutropenia, remission of neutropenia occurred within 18 days after administration of prednisone (2 to 4 mg/kg [0.9 to 1.8 mg/lb], PO, daily) and no serious complications or infections developed.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—An immunemediated pathogenesis should be considered for dogs with idiopathic neutropenia in which the cause is not known. Severe neutropenia and young age were significantly associated with idiopathic neutropenia in dogs. Prognosis appeared to be excellent with prednisone treatment.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objectives—To determine whether aqueous humor flare, measured by use of laser flaremetry, was proportional to aqueous humor protein concentration and to use laser flaremetry to evaluate disruption of the blood-aqueous barrier (BAB) in cats.

Animals—30 healthy adult cats.

Procedure—Laser flaremetry values for all eyes were compared with aqueous humor protein concentrations determined by use of a Coomassie blue microprotein assay. Laser flaremetry was then performed on both eyes before (0 hours) and 4, 8, and 26 hours after initiation of topical application of 2% pilocarpine (q 8 h) to 1 eye of 9 cats or paracentesis of the anterior chamber of 1 eye of 8 cats. Intraocular pressure and pupil size were also determined. Aqueous humor protein concentration was extrapolated from flare values by use of linear regression.

Results—There was a linear relationship between flare values and aqueous humor protein concentrations. Topical application of 2% pilocarpine and paracentesis of the anterior chamber caused a breakdown of the BAB that was detected by use of laser flaremetry. The highest mean flare readings after application of pilocarpine or paracentesis were 24.4 and 132.8 pc/ms, respectively, which corresponded to aqueous humor protein concentrations of 85.5 and 434.9 mg/dl, respectively.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Paracentesis of the anterior chamber resulted in a more severe breakdown of the BAB in cats than topical application of 2% pilocarpine. Laser flaremetry may be a useful clinical method to detect increases in aqueous flare and, hence, disruptions of the BAB in cats. (Am J Vet Res 2002;63:750–756)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To determine the effect of vaccination on serum concentrations of total and antigen-specific IgE in dogs.

Animals—20 female Beagles.

Procedure—Groups of 5 dogs each were vaccinated repeatedly between 8 weeks and 4 years of age with a multivalent and rabies vaccine, a multivalent vaccine only, or a rabies vaccine only. A fourth group of 5 dogs served as unvaccinated controls. Serum concentrations of total immunoglobulins and antigen-specific IgE were determined following vaccination.

Results—The multivalent vaccine had little effect on serum total IgE concentrations. The concentration of IgE increased slightly following vaccination for rabies at 16 weeks and 1 year of age and increased greatly after vaccination at 2 and 3 years of age in most dogs, with a distinct variation between individual dogs. Vaccination had no effect on serum concentrations of IgA, IgG, and IgM as measured at 2 and 3 years of age. The rabies vaccine contained aluminum adjuvant in contrast to the multivalent vaccine. An increase of IgE that was reactive with vaccine antigens, including bovine serum albumin and bovine fibronectin, was detected in some of the dogs vaccinated for rabies. There was no significant correlation between serum concentrations of total IgE and antigen-specific IgE following vaccination. Serum total IgE concentration rapidly returned to preimmunization concentrations in most dogs, but high concentrations of antigenspecific IgE persisted.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Vaccination of dogs for rabies increases serum concentrations of total IgE and induces IgE specific for vaccine antigens, including tissue culture residues. Vaccination history should be considered in the interpretation of serum total IgE concentrations. (Am J Vet Res 2002;63:611–616)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To determine whether the increasing prevalence of feline hyperthyroidism is the result of aging of the cat population and whether consumption of canned foods at various times throughout life is associated with increased risk of hyperthyroidism.

Design—Retrospective and case-control studies.

Study Population—Medical records of 169,576 cats, including 3,570 cats with hyperthyroidism, evaluated at 9 veterinary school hospitals during a 20-year period, and 109 cats with hyperthyroidism (cases) and 173 cats without hyperthyroidism (controls).

Procedure—Age-adjusted hospital prevalence of hyperthyroidism was calculated by use of Veterinary Medical Database records. On the basis of owners' questionnaire responses, logistic regression was used to evaluate associations between consumption of canned food and development of hyperthyroidism.

Results—Age-specific hospital prevalence of feline hyperthyroidism increased significantly from 1978 to 1997. Overall, consumption of pop-top canned (vs dry) food at various times throughout life and each additional year of age were associated with greater risk of developing hyperthyroidism. In female cats, increased risk was associated with consumption of food packaged in pop-top cans or in combinations of pop-top and non-pop-top cans. In male cats, increased risk was associated with consumption of food packaged in pop-top cans and age.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—These findings suggest that the increasing prevalence of feline hyperthyroidism is not solely the result of aging of the cat population and that canned foods may play a role. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2004;224:879–886)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To characterize patterns of dog and cat ownership and veterinary service use among Latino dog and cat owners with various degrees of English-language proficiency.

DESIGN

Cross-sectional telephone survey.

SAMPLE

Data from 393 Latino pet owners.

PROCEDURES

Telephone surveys were conducted with Latino dog and cat owners from a random sample of US households to determine the number of dogs and cats owned, factors associated with veterinary service use, and satisfaction with veterinary care.

RESULTS

393 of 1,026 (38.3%) respondents were pet owners. Two hundred fifty-nine of 330 (78.5%) dog owners and 70 of 115 (60.9%) cat owners reported taking their pet to the veterinarian in the past 12 months, most commonly for vaccination or examination or because of illness. Respondents were most satisfied with veterinary care provided, least satisfied with cost, and moderately satisfied with quality of communication. English-language proficiency was not significantly associated with whether owners sought veterinary care. A large proportion of respondents who wanted to receive pet health information in Spanish described themselves as speaking English well or very well.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Although having limited proficiency in English was not associated with Latino pet owners seeking veterinary care, opportunities exist for veterinary personnel to improve communications with these clients. Personnel can assess their clients' language needs by asking each about the language in which they would prefer to receive their pet's health information.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To investigate the preparedness of small animal veterinary personnel to communicate with Spanish-speaking pet owners with limited English-language proficiency (LEP).

DESIGN

Cross-sectional telephone survey.

SAMPLE

Data from 383 small animal veterinary practices.

PROCEDURES

Telephone surveys were conducted with veterinarians and office or practice managers from a random sample of US small animal veterinary practices in 10 states to estimate the number of Spanish-speaking pet owners with LEP visiting these practices, proportion of practices that used services to facilitate communication with Spanish-speaking clients with LEP, and degree of veterinarian satisfaction with their communication with those clients.

RESULTS

Responses were obtained from 383 of 1,245 (31%) eligible practices, of which 340 (89%) had Spanish-speaking clients with LEP and 200 (52%) had such clients on a weekly basis. Eight percent of practices had veterinary personnel who were conversant or fluent in spoken Spanish. Veterinarians who depended on clients' friends or family to translate were significantly less satisfied with client communication than were those who could converse in Spanish with clients directly. Availability of Spanish-speaking staff and offering of Spanish-language resources were associated with an increase in the number of Spanish-speaking clients with LEP seen on a weekly basis. Industry- and practice-generated Spanish-language materials were offered at 32% (124/383) and 21% (81/383) of practices, respectively; 329 (86%) practices had no Spanish-language marketing.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Opportunities were identified for improving communication with pet owners with LEP in the veterinary clinical setting, which could ultimately positively impact patient well-being and client compliance.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association