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Hookworm Infections in Dogs

What are hookworms?

Hookworms (Ancylostoma caninum, Ancylostoma braziliense) are parasites that get their name from the hook-like mouthparts they use to attach to the intestinal wall. They are only about 1/8" (3 mm) long and so small that it is very difficult to see them with the naked eye. Despite their small size, they ingest large amounts of blood from the tiny vessels in the intestinal wall. A large number of hookworms can cause anemia. This problem is most common in puppies, but can occur in adult dogs.

How di... Read More

Addressing Potential Ebola Concerns Regarding Your Dog

At Bishop Ranch Veterinary Center & Urgent Care, our top priority is the safety and well-being of your pet.  Many news outlets are reporting stories about Ebola but there is currently little known information about Ebola in dogs and cats. [1]

While BRVC serves as a reference for Bay Area residents with questions about their pets, we refer to the following organizations and sites for the most up to date information regarding Ebola:

CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

<... Read More

Cortisone Usages by Frank Utchen, DVM

Dr. Utchen, the vet said she wanted to give my dog a shot of steroids. Is this the same thing athlete’s abuse? 


No, due to an unfortunate similarity in terms, the performance-enhancing drugs that athletes abuse, and the type of steroids doctors and veterinarians commonly prescribe, sound the same, but are actually very different drugs with entirely different effects.  

Performance-enhancing steroids are correctly referred to as “Anabolic Steroids”, meaning they cause the body to build more tissue through metabolism. These unfortunately have numerou... Read More

Snail Bait Toxicity by Frank Utchen, DVM

Dr. Utchen, why is snail bait bad for dogs? 


First, realize that there are two main types of snail baits, and one is considered relatively safe for dogs. Look for the active ingredient and use the kind that contains 1% Iron Phosphate. This is relatively safe for dogs, because there is actually very little iron in the compound, and what there is, is poorly digested and absorbed by dogs, so most of it passes through them without incident. That being said, Iron Phosphate can still be toxic dogs if they ingest enough of it: a 40 lb dog would have to consume about 3 lbs of this bait to receive a lethal dose... Read More

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