Good health is the key to living full happy lives. At Leashes End, each and every cat and dog receives full-spectrum veterinary care to ensure that they are in the best health possible.

Medical and dental treatment is by far the largest expense we incur, and we depend upon the generous donations of our benefactors to make this treatment possible. Aside from routine veterinary care, which includes vaccinations and periodic checkups, senior pets usually require care for more specialized conditions. Although most of these conditions can be medically managed or treated, often the veterinary bills are more than many owners or shelters are willing or able to invest in senior pets. The neglect of these conditions exacerbates the underlying medical problem, causing unnecessary pain and discomfort for the animal, often leading to abandonment or euthanization.

The most common treatment we provide our seniors is thorough dental care. Many of our seniors arrive in a state of horrific dental neglect. Rotten and infected teeth make eating painful and compromise a pet’s nutrition and overall health. Infection also frequently spreads from the animal’s mouth, causing swollen glands and other painful conditions, which require antibiotics and other treatment. In some cases, the infection can be so bad that it compromises the integrity of the animal’s jaw.  Many of our seniors have had all their teeth extracted because the neglect was so bad. Not to worry, though! Our toothless seniors do just fine! With the infected teeth out of the way, they start to feel much better, regain their appetites, and begin to thrive on a healthy diet of soft home-cooked food.

Aside from dental care, we’ve seen a wide array of injuries and illnesses in our senior animals.  Other conditions that we have treated or managed (and continue to do so) include:

•Neurological conditions (such as seizures) and spinal injuries

•Heart, lung, or other organ damage or disease

•Arthritis, joint pain, and mobility issues

•Eye injuries, disease, infections, and partial or total blindness

•Ear infections and partial or total deafness

•Endocrinal conditions, including diabetes and hypo- and hyperthyroidism

•Skin conditions

Most of these conditions are manageable with continuing treatment and medication. But the medications are far from inexpensive, as anyone who has recently purchased RX medications can attest. While we do our best to source medications from discount pharmacies (such as Costco Rx), some medications require compounding by a specialist pharmacy like Wedgewood. Every now and again an emergency situation arises that necessitates a visit to the Veterinary Emergency Room. Often these visits can cost $1,000 or more. None of these life-saving treatments would be possible without the generous donations of our benefactors.

Dr. Marci Streck, DVM and her colleagues at Caring Hands Animal Hospital in Rockville provide the very best general veterinary and dental care as Leashes End’s primary care veterinarians.  When circumstances warrant specialized care (cardiologist, neurologist, internist, etc.), our seniors see specialists at BluePearl Veterinary Hospital in RockvilleVCA Veterinary Referral AssociatesCVCA Cardiac Care for Pets, and Dr. Mark Smith at the Center for Veterinary Dentistry & Oral Surgery.

With proper veterinary treatment, love, and plenty of attention, our dogs and cats live comfortable healthy lives well into their late teens and some into their twenties!