We remain open to provide care for your pets. We are following the direction of government and regulatory authorities and have implemented hospital and visit protocols to keep both you and our team safe. For regular updates on our hours and visit protocols, please follow our social media platforms.

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Periodontal (Dental) Disease in our Pets

Periodontal disease, or disease affecting the teeth and surrounding structures, is the most common condition in adult dogs and cats. Unfortunately, in many cases, our pets show few clinical signs other than bad breath, which is often perceived as being normal. This is concerning for several reasons. Dental pain is equally as painful in our pets as it is for us. For anyone who has experienced dental pain, it is a persistent, and sometimes agonizing. Our pets often do not exhibit outward signs of pain, as they have evolved to hide discomfort as it would make them “weak” in the wild. Further, dental disease can lead to permanent damage of internal organs such as the heart, liver, and kidneys.

Dental disease starts with the accumulation of plaque on the teeth, which is a combination of cells from the oral cavity, food, and bacteria. When plaque is left on a tooth, minerals in the saliva harden the plaque into tartar, or dental calculus, which firmly attaches to the tooth. While the tartar is visually displeasing, it is not the cause of disease, though it can help facilitate it.

Disease starts as the plaque and calculus move underneath the gum line, where the bacteria wreak havoc on the tissues. The bacteria secrete toxins and create inflammation, which when left untreated, leads to permanent damage to the structures surrounding the teeth. Eventually, this leads to the loss of the tooth. Throughout this process, which occurs over months, your pet is in a state of constant irritating discomfort.

While a detailed conscious examination of your pet’s mouth can often identify periodontal disease, a full examination can only be performed while your pet is under general anesthesia. Each tooth can be individually probed, 360 degrees around the tooth, to detect any changes in the gingiva, or gums. Dental radiographs allow us to examine the structures underneath the gum line, which is in most cases over 60% of the tooth.

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Cases of Leptospirosis in the GTA

Westbridge Veterinary Hospital has received reports of leptospirosis cases from other veterinary hospitals in the GTA.

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COVID-19: Additional measures we are taking

Dear Clients,

We are all aware of the concerns and rapidly changing situation with COVID-19. Due to the close public contact that our work requires, we have taken necessary measures to protect our clients, our staff and work hard to ensure we can continue to provide excellent care for our patients.

The following changes are effective as of Wednesday, March 18, 2020:

1. If you have travelled outside Canada or come in contact with anyone who has travelled outside Canada in the past 3 weeks, or if you are feeling unwell, (coughing, fever, fatigue, etc.), please contact our clinic. We will be more than happy to reschedule your appointment or help arrange to see your pet safely.

2. We are currently operating a "closed-door" policy to protect our clients and staff. When you arrive, please remain in your vehicle and use your cell phone to call us at 905-285-0002. We will take a history by phone, and bring your pet into the clinic for an examination with the veterinarian. We will then return to your vehicle with your pet and you will get another call from the Doctor to discuss our recommended treatment plan.

3. We are continuing to accept appointments for urgent or sick pets, as well as time-sensitive puppy/kitten vaccinations. All other services will be scheduled for a later time.

4. We are still OPEN with the following hours: Monday to Friday 10:00 am - 6:00 pm & Saturday from 8:00 am - 1:00 pm.

5. If you are ordering food or medications, please allow 4-6 business days as our suppliers are dealing with increased demand and are trying to fill orders as quickly as possible. We will advise you as soon as your order arrives. Please call us when you arrive to pick up your order, but do not enter the clinic. Our staff will bring your order to your car and take payment from your vehicle.

6. For the time being, we are not accepting cash as payment. Credit cards and debit card payments are still available.

7. Following the recommendations of our government and medical experts, we are doing our best to practice social distancing within the constraints of our jobs. We have taken these measures to avoid both contracting and facilitating the spread of this virus.

Thank you for helping us be diligent for everyone's safety. As we have heard from all levels of government, the situation is fluid, and any updates will be provided as changes occur.

Your dedicated team at Westbridge Veterinary Hospital