Services 2018-07-27T07:31:20+00:00

Love Matters

We’ll protect your pet.

Pet Wellness Care

Little puppy with a little tabby kitten
At Best Friends Animal Hospital, our wellness care is designed to provide comprehensive long-term, life-stage veterinary care for your pet. We are strong advocates of preventive health care and recommend that we see your pet at least annually for a comprehensive wellness exam.  During your pet’s wellness exam, we can detect and prevent the onset of illness and disease, assuring a longer and healthier life for your pet. Your pet’s wellness exams are a great opportunity for you to go over any questions or concerns you have about your pet’s health, nutritional or dental needs or behavior issues. We schedule enough time for you to discuss all of your concerns, questions and observed behaviors at home; we know how important it is to have peace of mind over your pet’s health.

Our wellness care includes:

  • Comprehensive physical and dental exam.
  • Individualized vaccination schedules for each pet based on age, health and risk of exposure to keep your pet protected against preventable illnesses.
  • Recommendations for flea control, heartworm preventative and deworming (if necessary).
  • Microchipping so your pet can return home if he or she is ever lost – if your pet is not already microchipped.
  • Nutritional guidance and weight management counseling
  • Exercise and behavior guidance
  • Pet insurance recommendations
Your pet’s wellness exams set the foundation for your pet’s long term health.  Please call us today to schedule your pet’s wellness exam.

Puppy Health Care

small cute beagle puppy dog looking up

Congratulations on your new puppy! 

We Just Love Those Little Balls of Puppy Fur!

Your puppy will be so happy to meet all of us at Best Friends Animal Hospital because we love puppies! We are eager to assist you with getting your puppy started on their journey to a healthy, long life.  Our veterinarian has many years of experience guiding new puppy owners through the puppy stage. We enjoy all the fun and excitement a new puppy brings!

It is important to have your new puppy examined by us as soon as possible to make sure your puppy is healthy and to vaccinate your puppy against serious, preventable diseases. We will make sure your puppy gets a good start to a healthy life through comprehensive puppy exams, vaccinations, parasite protection, and nutrition and exercise advice.

Your Puppy’s First Wellness Exam

This first puppy visit includes a thorough physical exam and allows us to establish an individualized wellness plan for your puppy going forward and includes the following beneficial components:
  • Comprehensive physical exam.
  • Intestinal parasite screening
  • Intestinal parasite worming (if needed)
  • Development of a vaccination program based on your puppy’s lifestyle and exposure risk
  • Necessary vaccines or vaccine boosters
  • Heartworm preventative recommendations
  • Recommendations for flea and tick prevention
  • Behavior and housetraining recommendations
  • Nutritional counseling
  • Exercise and behavior guidance
  • Pet insurance recommendations
For your first puppy visit, we request that you bring your puppy, a fresh stool sample (less than 12 hours old) and all paperwork pertaining to the previous care of your puppy including all previous immunizations, deworming, medications and any veterinary records you may have. You may email these records to us as well.  Also, be sure to ask us any questions you may have regarding your puppy’s health or behavior.

Your puppy’s first wellness exam will set the foundation for your puppy’s long term health and establish a long-term beneficial health record. It also allows us to monitor any medical or behavioral conditions for your puppy.

Please call us today to schedule your puppy’s wellness exam.

Kitten Health Care

Two adorable kittens playing together.Kittens outdoor.

Congratulations on your new kitten!

We Can’t Wait to Meet That Little Ball of Fur!

We look forward to welcoming your new kitten to our Best Friends Animal Hospital family and are eager to assist you with getting your kitten started on their journey to a healthy life.  We have many years of experience guiding new kitten owners through the kitten stage.  We enjoy all the fun a new kitten brings!

Please bring your new kitten in for a check-up as early as possible.  We schedule enough time for you to bring any questions or concerns you have; we know how important it is to have peace of mind over your kitten’s health.

Premature and young kittens may suffer more from medical issues as their immune system is not yet mature, and may be more susceptible to certain medical problems. Kittens that have not had adequate medical care prior to adoption or acquisition may have pre-existing conditions that need to be addressed.  We will make sure they receive a good healthy start in life through comprehensive kitten exams, vaccinations, parasite protection, nutrition and exercise advice.

Your Kitten’s First Wellness Exam

This visit includes a thorough physical exam and allows us to establish an individualized wellness plan for your kitten going forward.  Your kitten’s first wellness exam includes the following beneficial components:
  • Thorough physical exam
  • Dental exam
  • Intestinal parasite screening and intestinal parasite worming if needed
  • Testing for Feline Leukemia Virus (FELV) and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV)
  • A discussion of an appropriate vaccination schedule for your kitten, based on factors including breed, anticipated lifestyle, exposure risks and previous necessary vaccines.
  • Necessary vaccines or vaccine boosters
  • A discussion on the prevention of heartworm, fleas and ticks
  • Behavior and litter box training recommendations
  • Nutritional counseling
  • Pet insurance recommendations
For your first kitten visit, we request that you bring the following: your kitten on a leash or in a cat carrier, a fresh stool sample (less than 12 hours old) all paperwork pertaining to the previous care of your kitten including all previous immunizations, deworming, medications and any veterinary records you may have.  You may email these records to us as well.  Be sure to ask us any questions you may have regarding your kitten’s health or behavior

Your kitten’s first wellness exam sets the foundation for your kitten’s long term health and establishes a long-term beneficial health record.  Please call us today to schedule your kitten’s wellness exam.

Senior Pet Care

Portrait of a happy old dog at the dog park.
Good Healthcare Throughout Your Pet’s Life Will Benefit Your Pet As They Age

With our focus on wellness care, all of us at Best Friends Animal Hospital are here to help you and your beloved family pet throughout their life and into their senior years.  Just like humans, normal physical changes take place as your pet ages and diseases may follow that can often affect their overall health, well-being and comfort.  When detected early, many conditions can be prevented from progressing into more serious, and sometimes life threatening illnesses, by treating the condition in the early stages.  Our goal is for you and your family pet to enjoy the longest, healthiest life together.

We recommend twice yearly senior wellness exams so that, together, we may monitor your senior pet’s health, detect, diagnose, treat and control any medical conditions before they progress into serious problems.  Age-related health issues are a part of living with an aging pet, and we encourage our clients to take an active role with us in combatting ailments associated with the aging process.

Our bi-annual comprehensive senior pet wellness exam includes:

  • An in-depth, physical examination
  • Dental exam and professional dental cleaning
  • Comprehensive diagnostic testing that may include a senior pet blood profile analysis (blood count and blood chemistry panel), urine and fecal analysis, x-rays, blood and eye pressure testing.
  • Vaccinations as needed
  • Parasite testing and prevention
  • Heartworm testing and prevention
  • Nutrition and diet counseling
  • Behavioral evaluation and counseling

If you notice any of the following symptoms, we recommend you schedule an appointment to discuss them with us:

  • Weight loss
  • Decrease in appetite
  • Excess urination
  • Excess drinking
  • Reduced exercise, reluctance to move, run, jump, etc.
  • Perception of pain  when your pet moves or is handled
  • Any vomiting, diarrhea or lack of bowel movements
  • New lumps or bumps
  • Change in pet’s energy level, awareness and/or family interaction
  • Change in sleep patterns
  • Occasional cough or periods of rapid or difficult breathing
If your senior pet is a new client, please bring your pet's previous medical records to your first appointment. This includes vaccination dates and any previous lab work. You can either bring a paper copy or ask your previous veterinarian's office, rescue organization or breeder to fax or email them to us.

Diagnostic Testing

3D illustration, conceptual image. Molecule of DNA forming inside the test tube in the blood test equipment.
After your veterinarian completes a thorough physical examination, your veterinarian may recommend further diagnostic testing.  Best Friends Animal Hospital has sophisticated in-hospital diagnostic tools that provide detailed information about your dog or cat’s condition including an in-house laboratory and digital x-rays.  Our on-site laboratory allows us to obtain rapid results when dealing with time sensitive critical illnesses or in emergency situations.

Digital Radiology, or “x-ray”

Digital radiology is an imaging tool that provides a non-invasive method of examining your dog or cat’s internal organs and internal systems such as muscular-skeletal, cardiopulmonary (heart and lungs), gastrointestinal, reproductive and urinary systems.   The image quality of a digital x-ray is much higher than a film x-ray and there is no time lost in processing the image.  The digital images can be visualized within a few seconds following exposure, allowing us to diagnose and treat your pet rapidly.  Digital radiology is environmentally friendly because there are no chemicals to contaminate water systems and it decreases radiation exposure to your pet as images can be visualized in seconds and manipulated via a computer.

Laboratory.

Our in-house laboratory can provide our doctors rapid results of blood testing, fecal screenings, urinalysis, heartworm tests (dogs), leukemia/FIV tests (cats), and pre-surgical blood chemistry profiles, among other tests.

Blood Pressure Monitoring
Accurate blood pressure monitoring allows us to assess your pet’s condition while under anesthesia, if he or she is experiencing shock, or in other critical situations. It is also used during routine check-ups to provide a baseline blood pressure reading.

Anesthesia Monitoring
We use a state-of-the art ECG machine for monitoring blood pressure, respiration, heart activity, oxygen saturation and temperature during all surgical procedures.

Ear Care

Close up of the ear of a cat
Best Friends Animal Hospital reminds pet owners that ear care for both dogs and cats is important to your pet’s overall health.  Ear infections in dogs are often caused by bacteria, yeast, or ear mites and can cause your pet significant discomfort and irritation. Breeds that are prone to allergies and dogs with floppy ears such as cocker spaniels, Labrador retrievers and golden retrievers are particularly vulnerable to developing ear infections. Breeds that tend to grow hair in their inner ear canal (like schnauzers) are also prone to ear infections.

You can help prevent ear infections from developing by regularly checking your pet’s ears for any discharge, swelling, or unusual odor. If your pet’s ears are dirty, gently clean the ear canal with a cotton ball and a solution recommend by us.

If your pet is exhibiting any signs of an ear infection, it is best that you bring them to us for an exam as soon as possible.  Early treatment can prevent the infection from worsening, and spare your pet from inflammation and distress.

Signs your pet may have an ear infection include:
  • Ear scratching
  • Brown, yellow or bloody discharge
  • Odor in the ear
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Crusted or scabby skin on the near ear flap
  • Hair loss around the ear
  • Wiping the ear area on the floor or furniture
  • Head shaking or head tilt
  • Loss of balance
  • Unusual eye movements
  • Walking in circles
  • Hearing loss
Please do not hesitate to call us should you have any questions or need any information about your pet.

In-House Pharmacy

Flow of microorganisms in blue abstract background
We Have a Fully-Stocked, In-Hospital Pharmacy

Best Friends Animal Hospital has an in-hospital pharmacy capable of providing your pet with all required prescription and herbal medications.  We carry the safest flea, tick, and heartworm preventives, nutritional supplements, prescription diet food, and dental care products for your dog or cat.  In addition to convenience, purchasing your pet’s medications from our pharmacy means:
  • Our staff will be able to discuss dosing instructions and/or possible product interactions and any potential side effects with you.
  • You will have the opportunity to ask follow-up questions about all medications and products.
  • You can call us if you are worried about your pet’s reaction to the medication.
  • Allows us to monitor the efficacy of the medication.
  • Ensures that all medications and products are safe and obtained directly from their manufacturers.
  • Guarantees optimal product and medication storage conditions.
  • Promotes easy and accurate refills.

Microchipping

Corgy in the Field
Best Friends Animal Hospital recommends that all pets be microchipped.  For a pet owner, realizing a pet is lost or missing is one of the worst things that could happen. Thankfully, many pets who were lost are returned to their owners because their pets had been microchipped.

We can microchip your pet during any wellness exam.  Microchip implantation is a simple procedure and does not require your pet to be anesthetized.  We implant a tiny microchip the size of a grain of rice between your pet’s shoulder blades and under the skin using a pre-loaded sterile syringe. The microchip is a tiny transponder, coded to display a unique identification number capable of being read by a hand-held scanner.   The chip is registered with the manufacturer, linking your pet’s name with your contact information and your veterinarian.

Veterinary hospitals, animal control, animal rescues and shelters across the country are now equipped with scanners capable of detecting and reading microchips and gives you the best possible chance of finding a lost pet.

Found Pets

If you find a pet, you can use the Pet Microchip Lookup web site to find a pet's owners information based on the microchip number.  You can also give us a call and bring the found pet to our clinic and we will be happy to scan the pet to see if we can locate the owner.

Microchipping your dog / cat in Lincoln IL

Please ask us to microchip your pet, especially puppies and kittens, during a wellness exam.

Pet Laser Therapy

Red, bright laser beam
Best Friends Animal Hospital are excited to announce that we now offer Laser Therapy for your pets. Laser therapy, also known as low-level laser therapy, cold laser therapy or Class IV laser therapy, is a noninvasive procedure that uses light to stimulate cell regeneration and increase blood circulation.

Laser therapy is a sterile, surgery-free, drug-free, and pain-free treatment that can help make your pet feel and move more comfortably. Laser Therapy can be used to treat and speed the healing of a variety of issues such as injuries, wounds, fractures, neurological conditions, numerous dermatological problems, and pain. The laser also provides relief for pets suffering from arthritis.

The treatment process has shown to be quite relaxing for many pets. Once the laser technician and your pet are wearing their protective eyewear, a non-invasive handpiece will be used in a back and forth motion slowly over the intended area. For your pet, this will create a gentle and soothing warmth. Many pets find this procedure very relaxing; it is similar to a good massage. Many pets who were initially weary will find that their anxiety dissipates as their pain diminishes.

The number of laser treatments along with the duration of treatment varies according to each pet's ailment, size, coat, and needs. If you are interested in laser therapy please contact our office to discuss the benefits for your pet.

Diet and Nutrition

The cat is lying on the ground.
Your pet’s diet is a foundation to his or her continued optimal health; as pets age, their nutritional needs change. Each life-stage requires a certain balance of protein, fats, minerals, vitamins and carbohydrates.

It can be difficult to know if the product you have chosen is providing your pet with the nutrition he or she needs to stay healthy and strong. At your pet’s next wellness exam, talk to us about the type of food that will best benefit your dog or cat. We are glad to help you choose a food based on your pet’s breed, health, age, and body condition.

Your Pet’s Weight Matters!

Best Friends Animal Hospital can help you manage your pet’s weight and prevent weight-related health conditions.  Pets that are overweight or underweight are more susceptible to disease and injury and can shorten their life expectancy, and obesity is a complicating factor in heart conditions, arthritis, liver conditions and other ailments.  Talking to one of our veterinarians is the best way to start your pet off on a weight management program and long-term weight management success.

Prescription Pet Foods

Best Friends Animal Hospital carries top of the line therapeutic prescription dog and cat foods should your pet need specialized nutrition.  These prescription diets are formulated to address specific health conditions your pet may develop during his or her lifetime.

Please give us a call today if you would like to talk nutrition, diet or weight management with us or to make an appointment for your pet.

Skin Conditions/Allergies

Siberian Husky scratching himself with hind paw
Dogs and cats are susceptible to many skin disorders.  To keep your pet healthy, it is important that we examine, diagnose and treat your pet’s skin condition to be sure your pet will remain in optimal health.  Skin conditions can arise from many sources, and we see a variety of dermatological conditions on a regular basis such as:
  • Skin parasites (fleas and mites)
  • Infectious diseases (bacterial and fungal)
  • Hormonal diseases
  • Autoimmune related skin diseases
  • Recurring ear infections
  • Skin cancer
  • Foot and nail bed conditions
  • Food and contact allergies
  • Allergic reactions to inhalants and fleas

Allergies in Dogs and Cats

Allergens are a very common dermatological problem for cats and dogs. The itchy reactions occur when your pet’s immune system over-reacts to some outside allergic trigger.  Your pet’s allergies can worsen over the years.  Fortunately, most allergies can be managed so that your pet can be comfortable.

There are various types of allergens that could affect your pet, making them feel miserable. Thankfully there are various treatments to help relieve allergy symptoms. Most pets do not sneeze from their allergies like people do, instead, their skin, ears and paws become inflamed and itchy.   Common symptoms of pet allergies include:
  • Excessive scratching and face rubbing
  • Excessive licking of feet, legs, and abdomen
  • Hair loss
  • Biting and chewing at the skin
  • Recurring skin infections
  • Frequent ear infections
  • Chronic anal sac problems
Please call us to schedule an exam if your pet is experiencing any skin condition or is exhibiting any of the symptoms of allergies.

Surgery

JACK RUSSELL PARSON TERRIER RUNNING TOWARD THE CAMERA
Your pet may require at least one surgical procedure as part of his or her general health care strategy. Your veterinarian and the skilled team of veterinary technicians at Best Friends Animal Hospital possess the knowledge, skill, and compassion to care for your pet from the minute they enter our facility until the time they are ready to go home.  Our surgical suite is equipped with modern patient monitoring equipment and fluid pumps.

Surgeries performed at Best Friends Animal Hospital include, but are not limited to:

  • Spay
  • Neuter
  • Growth removal or tumor biopsy
  • Laceration repair
  • Urinary bladder surgery & stone removal
  • Abdominal exploratory surgery
  • Oral surgery (tooth extractions)
  • Cesarean section
  • Emergency surgery (e.g. foreign object retrieval, wound repair, others as needed)

What to Expect

We know that putting your pet under anesthesia for surgery can be an emotional experience which is why we want you to understand the steps we take to ensure the utmost safety and care of your pet when they are in our surgical care.

Pre-Surgical Care

Before surgery, your pet will be examined by your veterinarian, and anesthetics will be individually selected for your pet.  Blood tests will also be done before any anesthesia is administered to confirm that your pet’s liver, heart, and kidneys are functioning properly and that your pet is a good candidate for anesthesia.

Prior to induction of anesthesia, an IV catheter is placed in every patient. This allows us to administer warm IV fluids throughout anesthesia, which helps maintain patient hydration and ideal blood volume. The catheter also ensures safety by providing immediate IV access in the unlikely event of an emergency situation.

A comprehensive pain management plan is developed for every patient to keep them as comfortable as possible before, during and after surgery.

During Surgery

During surgery, we have a medically-trained staff member solely keeping an eye on your pet’s vitals. Their main priority is monitoring your pet’s blood pressure, heart activity including heart rate and rhythm (EKG), respiratory functions, body temperature, and making sure your pet is maintaining proper oxygen levels.

After Surgery

Your pet will be constantly monitored by a medically-trained staff member, and will be comforted when they awaken from surgery. Warm blankets will keep your pet comfortable throughout the recovery process.  Pain medication will be given if needed.  Our main goal is to make sure your pet is safe, healthy, and feeling as little pain as possible.

Upon discharge, we will discuss the surgery with you and one of our staff members will explain everything you need to know about caring for your pet at home. Within a few days, we will call to see how your pet is recovering, but please do not hesitate to call us if you have any questions or concerns.