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Why is it important?  Maintaining the dental health of your pet is as important as maintaining your own.  It can prevent gum disease and organ infection from bacteria that may enter the bloodstream through the mouth, as well as the pain that comes with these problems.  As with humans, plaque and tartar buildup on the teeth can in animals also be a source of the bacteria that contributes to organ infection.  An animal that has one of these afflictions may have bad breath or bleeding, swollen, or irritated gums.  They may shy away from being touched around the mouth, drop food, and lose their appetite and some weight if they can’t eat for discomfort.

How does one take care of a pet’s dental health in general?  Taking care of your pet’s dental health is a lifetime commitment, and so should take place several times a week if not daily, and early on in the pet’s life.  A pet should have a dental exam and professional cleaning at least once a year, and there are pet-specific, non-toxic toothpastes for many kinds of pets.  Although only complementary to professional cleanings and daily brushings, choice of diet, toys, and treats for your pet can also make a difference for their dental health.


How can diet, toys, and treats help?  The act of chewing can eliminate as much as 70% of plaque and tartar and stimulate gums.  Some diets are manufactured specifically to target plaque, tartar, and bacteria buildup in the mouth.  Larger, crumble-resistant, and specially coated kibble can help scrub a pet’s teeth and disintegrate the problem substances.  Dental chews and chew toys not only provide exercise for a pet’s jaw and satisfy the urge to chew, but the products may also combine knobby and pointy textures with disintegrative enzymes to attack the three culprits of dental disease and provide gum stimulation.  There are also some fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs that dogs and cats can eat as healthy treats.  For dogs, they include carrots, cucumber, celery, apples, watermelon, cilantro, and parsley.  Cats can eat the following in small portions: broccoli, green beans, and cooked carrots.  All of these, as well as bones and biscuits, can help both dogs and cats in these ways.


What else is there to consider when choosing treats for a pet? Bones can present a few problems.  For cats, it is important that bones are hard and large enough that they don’t splinter and cause problems upon ingestion.  Raw bones tend to be sturdier than cooked ones.  Similarly, for dogs, it is important to fit the dog with the kind of bone or treat.  If the dog is an aggressive chewer or has a sensitive mouth perhaps due to disease, harder bones may break teeth, which would increase the chances of infection and could cause other problems if ingested.  Some of the softer treats for dogs like pigs’ ears are also shown to risk more bacterial contamination and plaque and tartar buildup, so while your pet may favor them, it is important to not let them eat them for a long time if at all.  It is also important to compare the size of the treat or toy to the size of one’s pet and question whether it is a product that would cause choking, would go down too fast to be of any service to your pet’s teeth, and whether your pet would want to play with or eat it in the first place.  With a new pet, of course, one needs to experiment.

During the month of February, Longview Animal Hospital offers 15% off dental cleaning services for your pet.  Additional information on our process can be found at our Dentistry Page at Call today at 903-807-0887 to arrange for an appointment!

Nutrition is the foundation of health and happiness, both for humans and our companions.  This is because food is not only where we get energy for daily activities, but it is also a major source for the composition of our bodies, which directly dictates how well we can perform those activities.  If we feed ourselves poorly, we can expect eventual physical and mental consequences.  Eating the wrong foods may not provide the energy we seek from them and can negatively influence our moods, and it can also cause bodily complications later on from excessive or insufficient nutrients.  If we feed our pets similarly, we a can expect the same complications in them.  For example, in the case of protein, too much can hurt a pet’s kidneys and too little can stunt its growth, but just enough fortifies a pet’s lean muscle and encourages growth.  Hill’s Pet Nutrition products recognize this, and their foods are developed with the correct balance of nutrients that are the best at keeping pets healthy at different life stages, sizes, and specific conditions.  

At times, weight can be an indicator of a pet’s poor or fair nutrition, and Hill’s Canine/Feline Metabolic Weight Management diet meals are aimed at restoring health through weight reduction and maintenance.  The daily feeding guide is based on the ideal weight for the pet, but the perfect nutritional balance works at the rate of each pet’s metabolism.  After about 2 months on the diet, 88% of pets lose weight.  After these first two months, it is recommended to keep one’s pet on the diet, as it works to maintain or return to an ideal weight.  The diet achieves this because it helps the pet feel full between meals and because it also includes strong antioxidants that prevent the deterioration of stored nutrients.  

If you just can’t resist doting on your dog with some treats, Hill’s also produces Canine Metabolic and Mobility treats.  They are designed not only for weight management but also for the purpose of preserving and promoting a dog’s ability to run, walk, and jump by preventing osteoarthritis, a disease in which joints deteriorate.  Like the Canine/Feline Metabolic meals, the treats use fibers from fruits and vegetables, work with each dog’s individual metabolism, and impose a sense of fullness between meals.  The allowed number of treats per day is also determined by the particular dog’s ideal weight.  Unlike the meals, the treats exclude the antioxidants but include high levels of omega-3 fatty acids.  Effects in mobility are expected in 3 weeks, and effects in weight are expected in 2 months.  

The nutritional demands of humans and their pets are not the same, but the process of intake and outcome is. By caring for our pets a healthy diet, we are giving them the opportunities for long, healthy, and happy lives, which is something they provide for us simply by being our companions.

We carry several of the Hills Diet products for both canines and felines.  Please stop in for our recommendations for your pet!

Thinking about something fun for your pet for the holidays?  Consider a home-made gift for them this year, perhaps re-purposing some of your household items!  Here are a few of our favorite ideas:

For Cats:

  • Use some cloth scraps or pieces of felt to make a shaped toy and stuff it with catnip.  cloth or felt toy with catnip.
  • Be creative with some cardboard boxes to create an area for your cat to play and rest.
  • Find a fleece blanket, and sew it up with some filling. Add mesh loops to the corners and use caribiner clips or velcro to fasten under a small table or to a wire pet crate for a perfect hammock for your cat.
  • Build a scratching station for your pet by taping together two straight toilet bowl brushes (new) and affix them in a horseshoe shape over a cloth covered piece of wood.


For Dogs:

  • Cut up some of your old t-shirts into strips and use macrame knots to create a braided tug toy for your dog.
  • Use an old soft colorful t-shirt to wrap up a tennis ball or other squeaky ball.   Lay the shirt flat and cut just below the sleeves to make one large tube of cloth.  Cut off a small 2 inch strip from one end (to use to tie off the ball once it is placed), and cut the remainder into two equal sections.  Criss cross the sections into an x shape and place the ball in the center.  Wrap the ball and tie off and knot.  Cut the remaining hanging cloth into strips.  Braid in sections (for multiple ‘legs’), knot and tie off!
  • Use peanut butter and yogurt in a silicon mold and freeze for a great treat for your pet.

Let us know if you try any!  We’d love to post your pictures.

You Can Take them With You!  

Although traveling with your pet for a long distance trip isn’t always easy, it can save a great deal of stress for pets and owners who experience separation anxiety.  With a bit of extra planning and an eye towards safety, you can find ways to have a great travel experience without leaving your pets at home!  

Before deciding to travel with your pet, make sure they will be welcome at your destination.  Many destination areas usually offer an array of pet-friendly hotels, but it is always a good idea to research their pet rules before you go.  If you are traveling to someone else’s home, make sure they are able to accommodate you and your pet by possibly providing a special pet-safe room or quiet space for everyone’s well-being.  If they have pets of their own, make sure that all dispositions allow for having another animal in the house for a few days.  

In any travel situation, there are a few additional things that you should always do.  Always visit  your veterinarian before your trip to make sure that your pet is up to date on all their vaccinations and that they are healthy for travel.  Obtain a copy of your medical records for documentation to bring with you.  Bring emergency contact information along in case you need it and make sure your pet is always wearing his/her collar with full identification and tags.  

If you plan to travel by car, start early by spending some positive time with your pet in your vehicle so that they associate the vehicle with good things.  Practice car travel by visiting fun places with your pet – dog parks, pet stores, hiking trails – and gradually increase the amount of time you spend on the road.  Bring toys or items of clothing with your scent to help make your pet feel more comfortable.  Try not to travel right after a full meal as some pets will experience nausea, and whenever possible, secure pets in the car with crates, carriers, and travel harnesses.  

dog-restraintIf you haven’t yet tried vehicle restraint options with your dog, there are some good reasons why you should.  Just as seat belts protect drivers and passengers, a seat belt harness or booster seat (made specifically for pets) can help protect your pet from being thrown in the case of an accident or a short stop.  A safety harness can also prevent your pet from rushing out of the vehicle when you open your doors and keep them from being hit by a car.  A restraint system prevents your pet from nudging or distracting the driver of the vehicle, and keeps them from finding things to eat.  For a great comparison of vehicle restraint options, check out this link:

Traveling by plane? Typically, all pets will need to travel as cargo in a carrier that is properly sized for your pet.  Check with your selected airline for full details on the rules for pet travel before you purchase your tickets so that there are no surprises along the way.  

Traveling with your pet adds a bit of extra work and planning, but can make your vacation a fun one for you and your family without leaving your pet behind.  If you find that you prefer to travel without your pet, you can always schedule to board them with our team at Longview Animal Hospital!  

For additional Tips, See this article:

Veterinary offices – with the smells and scents of other animals and people they don’t know – can be scary places for your pet. While some pets are excited to go to the vet’s office, other animals can experience a great deal of anxiety. We would like to help you and your furry friend have as stress-free a visit as possible, so we have put together the following list of things that you can do to help reduce some of the anxiety that might come with a visit to the veterinarian. These suggestions are part of the Fear Free movement, promoted by noted veterinarian, Dr. Marty Becker. Some of these things will take time and practice to see improvements, but overall, they can help your pet have a more positive experience when it comes time for their checkups or scheduled procedures.
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  • If you use a carrier or restraint device, begin conditioning your pet to these items before your vet visit. You can use a carrier as a place to rest around your home so that it is more familiar and doesn’t become associated with fear. You can travel with your pet with these devices when they go other places so that they are not associated only with going to the vet’s office. An occasional meal in your car can also alleviate some of the stress of travel. You can also make a fun stop into your vet’s office for a treat or some loving attention from the staff when you don’t have an appointment to help your pet become accustomed to the clinic and the people.
  • Before your vet visit, you might want to take a walk with your dog to get him/her a little tired so that they are more relaxed when it is time for their appointment. If you notice expressions of anxiety, look away so that it sends a message that you don’t agree with their need for feeling upset. Try soothing music prior to your visit or in the car on the way to your appointment – something classical or special-made calming CD’s for pets.
  • Try to schedule your appointment for earlier in the day so that there is less time in the waiting room, or wait with your pet in the car until the exam room is ready for them. You can also make sure there are no other pets in the lobby prior to bringing yours in so that the “threat level” to your pet is reduced.
  • Don’t feed your pet a full meal prior to their appointment – and bring along some of your pet’s favorite treats. If they are still a bit hungry, they will be more receptive to accepting a positive reward for good behavior – and a less full stomach can prevent vomiting if the animal is anxious.
  • Make sure that you are relaxed and not stressed yourself. Animals will often pick up on cues about emotion from their owners. If you are not comfortable or if you are experiencing anxiety about a procedure, consider allowing your pet to be taken to an exam room unaccompanied.

If these methods don’t help, there are also anti-anxiety medications that can be given to your pet prior to their visit that can help to calm them and provide for a better experience. Our office can make recommendations for these if it is determined that they might be helpful.
We are always looking for ways to make your pet’s vet visit a stress-free experience for all. If there are other ways that we can help you, please let us know!


Scroll down for new content and photo gallery from the event!


img_4889Troop 7286 of Hallsville, led by Teresa Coats, donated a DataMars microchip scanner to Animal Control Officer Tom Campitiello of the Hallsville Police Department.  He is pictured above with the Girl Scout Troop and Dr. Brian Foye of Longview Animal Hospital.

The girls were undergoing training in preparation of their Microchip Event being hosted at Hallsville City Park on Saturday, November 5 from 2-4pm.  Longview Animal Hospital is sponsoring this event.  The Girl Scouts will be offering belly rubs, paw nail painting, dog walks and microchipping. The cost for microchipping pets will be $25.  This will be a great event for the community and we hope to see you there!

Updated November 29

It was a beautiful day and several members from the community came by to enjoy the event.  Thank you Girl Scout Troop 7286 for planning this fun event!


senior-petHaving an older pet in your life is a wonderful thing.  All the work that has gone into training your younger pet pays off greatly when your pet ages into a more calm, seasoned adult. All dog breeds are considered to be approaching senior years when they reach about 7 years of age.

Testing is important as your pet begins to age so that there is baseline information on file and changes throughout each year can be tracked and evaluated as your pet continues to grow older.  It is recommended that screening labs and bloodwork are updated once or twice each year.  This helps to identify any illnesses or age-related diseases while still in the early stages, making diagnosis and treatment more effective for your pet.  Treatment in the earlier stages also tend to be less costly.

It is not uncommon for older dogs and cats to outwardly appear perfectly healthy, as they are very good at hiding symptoms for long periods of time.  Often they seem to go from healthy to very sick almost overnight, when they can no longer hide that something is wrong.  Regular screenings are a reliable way to be sure that your pet remains healthy and are recommended every 6 months along with a physical exam.

Screenings typically include a Complete Blood Count, serum chemistry panel, a thyroid test and a urinalysis.  These tests give an overall indication of your pet’s health and can detect conditions, infections and illnesses in the early stages.  As your dog or cat ages, they may require changes to their diet or perhaps they need medications to help keep them more mobile.  They may become more susceptible to parasites.  Older pets may also begin to exhibit some behavior changes (disorientation or hearing loss, vision loss, mood changes, repetitive behaviors, etc.).  Regular exams and screenings help to address these issues as they begin to occur.

If you have any questions about the health of your senior pet, please contact our team at Longview Animal Hospital at (903) 807-0887.  We are happy to help guide you through this special time.

For additional resources on caring for a senior pet, please visit the American Veterinary Medical Association. 



Dr. Foye and the crew at Longview Animal Hospital, along with our families, enjoyed a team outing to watch the final Rangers game of the regular season. What a beautiful stadium, an enjoyable game (although they could not quite pull off a win after going into an extra inning in overtime) and an amazing staff!! It was nice to get out, relax and have fun together.

Click on any of the images below to view larger images in carousel.


It’s that time of year again!  (Entry deadline updated.)dog-1547114_1280

Stop by at Longview Animal Hospital to have a photo taken of your costumed pet (and receive a free halloween treat bag for your pet), or send your information and photo to us by email.


Entries are accepted by email starting today (10/1) through FRIDAY, October 28, 5:00 pm.
Note: Contest winners will be limited to those who reside with their pets within our business operating region.

Entries will be placed in our dedicated 2016 Pet Halloween Costume Contest Album that evening on our Facebook Page.

Voting will take place on our Facebook Page ALBUM from 10/28 (evening) through noon on 10/31 (1 like = 1 vote).

Winners (top 3 of those with the most likes) will be announced on our Facebook Page at 5pm CST

1st Prize: $50 gift card for use at Longview Animal Hospital and a Pawsitively Awesome Pet Gift Basket!

2nd Prize: $30 gift card for use at Longview Animal Hospital and a large bag of Hills Science Diet  pet food.

3rd Prize: $20 gift card for use at Longview Animal Hospital.


Please submit your entry by email to
Please include:

Pet’s Name
Owner’s Name
Costume Description
Pet’s Age
Pet’s Breed
Any Additional Information
Town where you live
Don’t forget to attach your photo!

Thank you!  We look forward to seeing your pictures – good luck to all!

Click Here to Submit Your Entry

View Official Contest Rules Page

hip displasia wikimedia cc0

Hip dysplasia is a genetic condition that is found commonly in larger dog breeds but can occur in smaller breeds and even cats as well.   The condition occurs when the ball of the femur bone does not fit perfectly into the pelvic socket. Instead of a smoothly operating ball-and-socket joint, there is laxity in the joint that over time will cause inflammation and loss of function of the joint.  Dogs with hip dysplasia experience pain and limping and are prone to more severe arthritic symptoms due to inflammation and the continued degeneration of cartilage in the hip joint.

Some breeds have a genetic susceptibility for hip dysplasia, others can develop it as a result of poor nutrition or obesity.  A combination of a physical exam, and x-rays are usually necessary to determine if the condition exists. Swimming exercises and weight control are two possible non-invasive treatments that can help alleviate some of the damage of the condition.  Most dogs, however, need anti-inflammatory and/or pain medications and we carry a variety of options.  For more severe cases, there is also the option of injectable medications or corrective surgery in younger dogs.  Older dogs with severe disease can sometimes be candidates for hip replacement, just like in humans.

If you should have any questions about this topic or if you are concerned that your pet may be suffering the effects of this condition, please give us a call at 903-807-0887 and set up an appointment for an exam with x-rays.  We will work with you to develop a plan for the most effective treatment based on you and your pet’s needs.

To view some frequently asked questions about Hip Dysplasia on our ePetHealth Portal  (login required), and then you can access information at the link below:

Click Here to learn more about our ePetHealth Portal – a great resource for all pet owners!