Wide variety of Services offered
Preventive Health Care
The focus of our practice is on prevention, so with every house call your pet will receive a comprehensive physical exam, immunizations (if appropriate), suitable diagnostic tests, and any medicine or pet care product that your pet may need from our fully stocked pharmacy.
The information provided through a thorough exam and history may help detect early signs of illness and address health issues before they progress. We encourage you to use these examinations to take an active role in your pet’s health care.
Micro-chipping your pet is a safe and very effective way to help ensure your pet’s return if the unthinkable happens.
Each microchip is unique and carries vital information about your pet including the owner’s name, address and contact information. Microchip implantation takes only a few minutes and significantly increases the chance that your pet will be returned safely.
In our fabulous Florida climate we inherently and unfortunately share it with several skin parasites such as mites, fleas and ticks just to name a few. As well, skin allergies in Florida for our furry companions is not an uncommon problem.
Dr. Zafir’s expertise in this area is rather expansive. With a wide array of diagnostic tests available and state of the art oral medications such as Apoquel. Along with shampoos and conditioners we can surely tame these uncomfortable and irritating problems for both your pet and yourself. We also carry a wide array of flea and tick preventatives.
As a practice, one of our goals is to offer state-of-the-art medicine and diagnostic testing; so we are pleased to offer ultrasound services as a means of providing a higher level of quality care to our patients.
At our affiliate hospital when necessary we can incorporate the use of this powerful tool in a completely non-invasive and painless way to diagnose and evaluate many common diseases. The imaging studies are conducted without using any form of radiation, it utilizes high-frequency sound (ultrasound) waves to create a picture of what is inside your pet’s body. Ultrasound waves can generate excellent images of abdominal organs, including the liver, spleen, gallbladder, and kidneys. It is also useful for assessing fetal health and monitoring pregnancy in breeding animals. It also allows for real time evaluation of cardiovascular (heart) function, called an echocardiogram, and it can help us diagnose and stage (determine the severity of) some forms of cancer. We strive to provide our patients with the highest quality medicine and diagnostic testing, we are pleased to offer ultrasound as one of our diagnostic capabilities.
Hospice and Euthanasia Services
Hospice care is a type of care and philosophy of care that focuses on the palliation of a terminally ill or seriously ill patient’s pain and symptoms.
Deciding when your pet may need hospice care or euthanasia is a very personal and private decision, but that doesn’t mean you have to make this difficult choice on your own. Some people describe the process of making this decision as heartbreaking, surreal, or “the hardest thing they’ve ever had to do.” Others may feel immense guilt, or avoid making the decision altogether. Dr. Zafir who is very compassionate in all that he does, has himself gone down this path with his own beloved pets. He can help you through this painful process and his recommendations will always be in your best interests and that of your pets. Dr. Zafir will first and foremost provide comfort and attempt to maintain some semblance of a quality of life. If that cannot be attained then pet home euthanasia makes this difficult time less stressful for everyone involved and the most unselfish thing we can do for our pet. Although it’s difficult, planning euthanasia for your ailing pet is the kindest and most humane thing that you can do. It’s helpful to learn more about the process, talk openly, ask questions and plan things in advance as much as possible. While it may sound strange to some, it can also be a great comfort to have a conversation with your pet about their quality of life and what lies ahead. Choosing a place to say goodbye to your pet is very important, but you can go a few steps further if you’d like: indoors, you can create a calm, soothing atmosphere by dimming the lights, playing low, familiar music, and lighting candles; outdoors, a setting sun in the background is always appropriate. To ensure that the experience will be as tranquil as possible, please remember to turn off telephones, televisions and any other distracting devices ahead of time. Doing these things can give you a greater sense of control in a difficult time, and allow a more peaceful experience for everyone involved. Please note Dr. Zafir does not perform convenience euthanasia (e.g. a relatively healthy pet).
Recognizing and alleviating pain in our patients is at the very heart of quality, compassionate patient care.
It is one of the vital signs that are monitored in our patients along with temperature, pulse, respiration and blood pressure. Veterinary patients feel pain and discomfort under the same circumstances as people do. From routine procedures (such as a spay or dental cleanings), to more advanced medical treatments (such as bone surgeries or cancer treatments), to chronically painful conditions (such as arthritis or back pain), we are dedicated to providing safe and effective pain management to every patient. We know that recognizing and alleviating pain in pets is the essence of good patient care and therefore we will help you recognize those signs as well. This will help us together in modifying his or her pain management plan when necessary to provide comfort, well being and a full recovery.
When problems do arise we may need special tests to help us make a diagnosis or monitor a condition.
For these occurrences we have both in-housing testing as well as outside laboratory consultations. Having access to accurate diagnostic test results can help our veterinary care team serve your pets’ needs by expanding the testing options available to all our patients. These include but are not limited to:
-Serum Chemistries, Hematology, Serology (blood work)
-Parasite Testing (fecal analysis)
-Bacterial and Fungal Culture
-Digital Radiology (x-rays)
-Ultrasound: on call as needed
Three of the four core vaccines have in-house tests to measure titer levels (measures the level of antibodies in a blood sample) which in turn tells the Doctor if your pet has immunity (protection) against a particular disease(s).
We strongly recommend these tests either after the initial puppy/kitten series to determine with relative certainty that your pet is protected. Or, during their annual preventative care visit. Why? Because if they have sufficient immunity then there may not be a need to vaccinate. At Vets to Pets we have moved away from automatically vaccinating on an annual basis. We certainly don’t want to over or under vaccinate. Discuss this issue with Dr. Zafir during his next visit.
One of the biggest shortcomings in our care of our furry family members is not keeping in mind that they age much faster than we do.
As in humans, some health issues that affect older pets can begin with very subtle changes that may go unnoticed until the problem has become serious. Regular wellness visits are important for every stage of your pet’s life, so don’t forget to keep your senior pet’s scheduled wellness appointments. Remember old age for us humans or your pet is not a disease just problems tend to develop when we become older. The best way to help protect your pet as he or she ages is to understand the aging process in pets. Dr. Zafir understands that process and can help you help your pet. Routine wellness blood work and other routine diagnostic testing are important for senior pets because these tests allow us to evaluate how your pet’s health is either responding to current management strategies or changing with age.
Regular professional cleaning is important to maintaining your pet’s teeth.
Our affiliate hospital has the latest and most modern equipment to safely diagnose and treat oral cavity disease. One of the most important diagnostic tools in veterinary dentistry is the use of digital dental x-rays. Visual inspection of a pet’s mouth reveals the crowns of the teeth, the gum tissue, the tongue, and the lining of the oral cavity. There is much that cannot be seen by the eye. Through the use of x-rays, we will be able to determine if a tooth is abscessed in the root which may require extraction or other treatment. Periodontal disease is defined as an inflammation or infection of the tissue surrounding the tooth. Bad breath, red or swollen gums, yellow-brown tartar covering teeth, pain and bleeding are all warning signs that your pet may have dental disease. Accumulation of tartar (calculus) on the teeth causes gums to recede; infection soon follows; and then the untreated infections spread into the tooth sockets causing abscessed roots or loose teeth. If left untreated, the ingested bacteria from the mouth accumulates in your pet’s body, resulting in significant internal changes in the kidneys, heart muscle abnormalities, and liver tissue damage. We employ safe ultrasound equipment to clean each tooth thoroughly – above and below the gum line. Dental technicians polish teeth to create a smooth, lustrous tooth surface more resistant to plaque buildup. We also offer through Pet Dental Services, where appropriate, a Professional Outpatient Preventative Dentistry that does not require general anesthesia and is less expensive as compared to the more traditional anesthetic dental. Don’t hesitate to ask Dr. Zafir as to whether your pet is a candidate and the procedure is suitable for your pet’s oral health and longevity. We carry an assortment of Preventive Care Products to help minimize the occurrence or the development of subsequent dental disease.
Where appropriate we will recommend this modality of high quality veterinary care. Laser Therapy is the use of specific wavelengths of light (red and near-infrared) to create therapeutic effects.
These effects include improved healing time, pain reduction, increased circulation, and decreased swelling. The United States gained FDA clearance in 2002, and therapeutic lasers have been extensively and successfully used in many veterinary hospitals since. The benefits of laser therapy have been undeniable and have dramatically improved the quality of life for pets, those afflicted with chronic pain as well as those with sudden injuries. Vets to Pets through our affiliate hospital is ready and eager to show you a path to a Drug Free, Surgery Free and Pain Free option to manage numerous conditions, such as post traumatic wounds, arthritis, ear/skin conditions, and post orthopedic surgical recovery, just to name a few.
Parasite Prevention and Control
Parasites can cause serious illness and even death in pets. For example, ticks can transmit infections like Lyme disease, and fleas can transmit tapeworms and Bartonella – the bacteria that causes “cat-scratch fever” in humans.
Mosquitoes transmit another type of parasite, called a heartworm. Heartworms live in your pet’s lungs and heart, causing damage to these organs, and sometimes even death. Intestinal parasites, like roundworms and hookworms, also threaten pets and are even transmissible to humans. Fortunately, we can recommend tests to tell if your pet has parasites. We can also examine your pet for evidence of fleas, ticks, or other parasites. Doctor Zafir can recommend medications to help control fleas, ticks, heartworms, and intestinal parasites. Preventing parasites in your pets also helps protect children and other family members, so let’s work together to protect your pets and family.
Radiology (or X-rays) is a crucial tool in veterinary medicine. Radiography is painless, safe, and completely non-invasive, and it uses only very low doses of radiation.
Our affiliate hospital has the technology through digital means, to allow Radiologists to quickly and accurately evaluate muscular-skeletal, cardiovascular/cardiopulmonary (heart and lungs), gastrointestinal, reproductive and urinary systems. Radiographs are vital in detecting bone fractures, chronic arthritis, bladder stones, certain spinal cord diseases and for finding and assessing tumors. They can be helpful in locating foreign material such as swallowed fishhooks, safety pins and a variety of other conditions. It is a valuable diagnostic instrument to allow skilled professionals to make a correct diagnosis for your pet.
If and when it is necessary from routine procedures such as a spay or neuter to more complex procedures our highly trained affiliate hospital’s staff and surgeons can address the appropriate and very best care for your pet.
We offer advanced surgical techniques and technology. All patients are carefully screened for safety, and anesthetics are specifically tailored for your pet. Surgical services and facilities include: surgeon available for consultation; fully trained veterinary and technical staff to ensure the safest, most efficient, state-of-the-art procedures for your pet; advanced sterilization techniques; ECG, respiration, blood pressure and oxygen saturation monitors, full blood testing and pain management post operatively. We utilize lasers in our surgeries to minimize bleeding, pain and a quicker return to normal function of your pet. We also employ board certified surgeons when necessary for the more complex procedures. When your pet is ready to go home, we will review your postoperative care and medication instructions. If any questions arise after your pet returns home or at any other time during the postoperative period, call us. We welcome your questions and will do all we can to help your pet recover fully. Help is only a phone call away.
At Vets to Pets we know illness doesn’t always have a physical presentation. Dr. Zafir is trained to help manage your pet’s behavioral issues including: anxiety, depression, fear, obsessive compulsion and many others.
When a pet has a behavior problem, the consequences are far-reaching. Behavior problems threaten the bond you have with your pet by damaging the loving relationship that should exist between you. In addition, several medical conditions can manifest in ways that mimic behavior problems. Scheduling an evaluation with a professional skilled in diagnosing and managing behavioral issues in pets is the first step on the road to resolving the problem. Before you and your pet suffer through one more day of inappropriate behavior, call us. Let’s talk about how we can help.
Unfortunately, many infectious diseases still pose a significant threat to dogs and cats that are unvaccinated.
This doesn’t mean a “Cookie Cutter” approach should be taken to protect our pets and give them all commercially available vaccines. Dr. Zafir will select the vaccines with your input, concerns and your pet’s lifestyle. Several core vaccines may in fact be given for longer intervals such as every three years depending on several factors. Don’t hesitate to ask Dr. Zafir as to whether this can apply to your pet. Vaccine recommendations can also change throughout a pet’s life, as travel habits and other variables change. We will consider all these factors as we determine which vaccines your pet should have.
Nutrition plays a critical role in your pet’s overall health and well being.
Nutritional needs change with age and activity level. Some pets require special food, and all pets benefit from a balanced diet. Are you comfortable reading and interpreting pet food labels? Let Dr. Zafir help guide you with his counseling services and accomplish your goals to meet any dietary needs for an illness or simply to shed (or gain) a few pounds. We have a wide selection of prescription diets to keep your pet happy and healthy.
Puppy and Kitten Care
New Puppy or Kitten? What a great thrill. Do you have questions about nutrition, training, vaccinations, grooming, parasite protection, or overall health?
Then one of the first things you should do is introduce him or her to Dr. Zafir, your pet’s family Doctor who comes to your home or office. He offers your new family member a unique opportunity through a comprehensive physical exam and history to determine if any underlying problems exist. More importantly to discuss schedules for preventative vaccine and parasite control programs to pave the way for a long, happy and healthy life.