FAQs Medical Information

How often should my pet see the veterinarian?

Routine annual veterinarian visits for apparently healthy pets are ideal resources for preventive medicine. The best chance a pet has against an illness is early detection and prevention of the disease altogether.

How often should my pet be vaccinated?

Puppies and kittens should receive a series of 3 sets of vaccinations 3-4 weeks apart by the time they are 4 months old. Routine booster vaccinations should be given in 1 year and then every 3 years thereafter. Some vaccines may need boosters every 6 months to a year, such as Bordetella and Leptosporosis.

The exact vaccinations necessary for each client is dependent on activity, location, age, and general exposure.

Do you perform titers prior to vaccinating?

We do not routinely perform titers on our patients prior to vaccinations, but titers can be evaluated by request.

What does the physical examination include?

A physical examination by a licensed veterinarian includes a general evaluation of the temperature, pulse, respirations/lungs, teeth, skin, ears, eyes, abdomen, joints, weight, mental status, muscle tone, and assessment of the patient’s history.

What happens when my pet is spayed or neutered?

Female pets are spayed to prevent ever getting pregnant. We perform a complete ovariohysterectomy, which removes both ovaries, uterine horns, and the uterus.

Male pets are neutered to prevent being able to impregnate a female. We perform a castration to remove both testicles. If a pet is cryptorchid, or retains the testicle within the body, the patient is at a higher risk of testicular disease and may pass the trait to the litter.

Why should I spay/neuter my pet?

Several positive reasons for spaying/neutering your pet include:

  1. Decrease risk for breast cancer and uterine infections in females.
  2. Decrease risk for prostate and testicular diseases in males.
  3. Decrease risk of aggression and roaming in males. Also prevents traumatic incidents related to these behaviors.
  4. Decrease chance of unwanted litters or complications related to pregnancy and breeding.
  5. Females no longer have heat cycles.
  6. Decrease likelihood of spraying or marking territory, especially in your home.
  7. Altering your pet is now affordable and cost effective compared to providing the veterinary care for a new litter.
  8. Be part of the cause to reduce pet overpopulation and needless euthanasia throughout our shelters nationwide.

At what age should I consider altering my pet?

We prefer to alter pets at 4-5 months of age before their first heat cycle and before reaching puberty. The minimum weight is 2 pounds, and the minimum age is 3 months.

Can my pet still be altered if in heat, pregnant, or nursing?

Your pet can still be spayed if she is in heat or pregnant. She may require more pain medication and fluid therapy due to her condition. Furthermore, she is at a slightly greater risk for surgical complications. Additional services, such as blood work, may be required and additional fees incurred. If in heat, you may consider rescheduling her surgery two weeks later. Nursing patients should wean their litter and schedule her spay surgery two weeks later.

How long is recovery from a spay/neuter surgery?

Tissue healing at the incision site can take 7-14 days. Patient activity varies for each pet based on age and medical condition. Most patients return to normal activity in 1-3 days, though some require pain medication for 1 week.

Do I need to return for suture removal?

No. Absorbable sutures are placed for all layers of incision closure and internally. These take several weeks to absorb. The incision site should be monitored for a reaction to the suture material, such as swelling, pain, or discharge.

What is periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease is inflammation of some or all of a tooth’s support. When compared to gingivitis, periodontitis indicates bone loss. If left untreated, periodontitis may cause loose painful teeth as well as internal disease.

What causes periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease is caused by plaque (bacteria). Bacteria are attracted to the surface within hours of teeth being cleaned. Within days, the plaque becomes mineralized and produces calculus. As plaque ages and gingivitis develops then periodontitis (bone loss) occurs.

What are the signs?

Bad breath is the primary sign of periodontal disease. Dogs’ and cats’ breath should not have a disagreeable odor. When periodontal disease advances, inability to chew hard food as well as excessive drooling with or without blood may occur.

How is periodontal disease diagnosed?

Bone loss from periodontal disease occurs BELOW the gum line. In order to get a true evaluation of what stage your pet is in, your pet must be examined under general anesthesia for a full visual exam, x-rays, and instruments are used to measure bone loss. The disease is then graded on a scale of 1 to 4:

Grade 1: Gingivitis

Grade 2: Early periodontitis-less than 25% support loss

Grade 3: Established periodontitis – between 25-50% support loss

Grade 4: Advanced periodontitis – greater than 50% support loss

How is periodontal disease treated?

Treatment depends on the severity of the disease. Stage 1 gingivitis can be treated by teeth cleaning, polishing, and fluoride treatment. Stage 2 disease will require deep scaling and application of a local antimicrobial if pocket exists. Stage 3 disease is treated similarly in cases where the owner is able to provide and the owner is able to accept daily plaque control. Once stage 4 disease occurs, surgery is necessary to treat the affected teeth through specific procedures or extraction.

What is the prognosis for periodontal disease?

Gingivitis is treatable and curable with daily tooth brushing. PERIODONTAL DISEASE IS NOT CURABLE ONCE BONE LOSS OCCURS, but may be controllable once treated and followed up with strict home care.

FAQs Clinic Information

What makes The KAAWS Clinic different from other veterinary clinics?

We are a low-cost spay/neuter and wellness clinic focusing on preventive medicine and client education. To accommodate our pricing, we schedule more appointments than your average full-service veterinary clinic but limit the services we provide. For instance, we refer all patients in need of orthopedic procedures, imaging (radiographs, ultrasound), neurologic testing, hospital boarding and intensive care, cancer therapy, and more intensive medical treatments. We recommend full-service clinics that can provide these services and the required time needed to assess and treat the patient. For more information on this please refer to our Wellness Policy.

In addition, we operate an efficient protocol for servicing a high volume of surgery patients, allowing us to conserve resources while passing the savings to clients. We strive to provide quality, caring veterinary services at an affordable cost.

Do I need an appointment?

Yes. Appointments are required for all services and a strict late policy is enforced to ensure wait time is as minimal as possible. Patients needing a dental cleaning will require a wellness examination prior to making the appointment for surgery. This allows the doctor to determine the level of dental care needed and answer any questions you may have regarding the care of your pet pre- and post-surgery.

What if I need to reschedule or cancel my appointment?

If you need to reschedule or cancel your appointment you can contact the clinic by phone or email. All cancellation and rescheduling requests are required to be made 24 hours before your scheduled appointment time. If you do not give 24 hours advance notice, a No Show/Sufficient Notice Not Given Fee may apply. Please review our Cancellation Policy for more details.

What if I am late to my appointment?

If you are late to your appointment you will have to reschedule and a late fee may apply. Please review out Late Policy for more details.

Will you see any patient?

We focus on dogs and cats only. Any sick patient that we cannot provide services for immediately will be referred to a full-service or emergency clinic because our appointments are typically booked out for 1-2 weeks in advance. It is important that any illness should be addressed as soon as possible. We do not see emergency cases and all emergency situations will be referred to a full-service or emergency clinic.

We have a vast experience with several breeds of dogs and cats, particularly brachycephalic (short-nosed) breeds, large breeds (Rottweilers, pit bulls, German Shepherds, etc.), feral cats, and rescue/shelter patients. KAAWS will not see aggressive pets or pets with behavioral problems that require extended specialized care to be seen – these pets will be referred to a full service clinic that is better equipped to handle these pets.

Do you offer emergency services?

We do not see emergency cases and all emergency situations will be referred to a full-service or emergency clinic.

Do you work with feral cats?

We do offer services for feral cats. Due to the nature of trapping feral cats, we do receive them on a walk-in basis. Though we strive to attend to them the same day, cats may have to be housed overnight for treatment the next day.

For the safety of our staff and the patient, we only service feral cats housed in humane, wire, trap door cat traps. We will not be able to provide services if the feral cat is in a hard or soft carrier.

Humane feral traps can be purchased at any Home Depot and Lowes. They can also be reserved to borrow from the City of Houston and H.O.P.E.

All feral cats that come in for spay or neuter will have their left ear tipped.

Can I tour the entire clinic?

All clients and potential clients can tour our entire facility. We believe clients have a right to know where their pets are housed and treated. The tour would include the lobby, examination rooms, pharmacy/lab, treatment area, surgery suite, and dog and cat wards.

Do you use current medical techniques and treatments?

Our staff maintains continuing education hours to maintain knowledge of current therapies and surgical techniques to best serve your pets.

What preanesthetic testing do you recommend and how is it performed?

Preanesthetic testing is recommended for all patients and is dependent on their age, history, and health status. Specific tests include in-house CBC, blood chemistries, electrolytes, urinalysis, heartworm test, feline leukemia/FIV testing, and fecal examination. A physical examination is performed prior to anesthetizing each patient (except for feral cats).

What anesthetic protocol do you use?

Our protocols are intended for apparently healthy patients. These protocols may change once each patient is evaluated.

The basic anesthetic protocol for dogs includes a presedation for pain and preparation for surgery given 15 minutes prior to surgery under the skin. Patients are then induced or made unconscious with an intravenous injection, intubated (tube placed in the trachea), and maintained on gas anesthesia. Patients are monitored with a pulse oximeter that monitors heart rate and oxygenation from this point until recovered. Blood pressure may also be evaluated. Once prepared for surgery, patients are kept on a heat source to help regulate body temperature until recovered. Once the patient is starting to swallow, the intratracheal tube is removed and the patient remains with a heat source until completely recovered.

The basic anesthetic protocol for cats is similar with a few differences. Cats do not receive the presedation. They are induced with an intramuscular injection to limit the stress sometimes associated with an intravenous injection. The protocol continues as with dogs. Healthy male cats often use mask gas anesthesia due to the relative short duration of the surgery.

Is pain medication included for surgical and dental patients?

Pain medication for 3 days is included with each procedure, though longer amounts may be given. For a small additional cost, we recommend an injection during surgery that lasts 24 hours until medication can be given the next day.

How are the surgery patients housed?

We have separate wards for dogs and cats. Dogs and cats for surgery are housed in stainless steel kennels, and large runs are available for oversized breeds.

What time do I need to arrive? Pickup?

Surgery admissions are between 7:15 a.m and 8:30 a.m. and expect a 30-45 minute check-in process. Patients can typically begin going home at 2:00 p.m., a member of the providing team will call you once the pet is in recovery and give you a better estimated time for pick up.

Do you give prescriptions for medications?

We do offer prescriptions for medications not stocked or available on our online pharmacy at no charge.

Can I access the veterinarians easily?

We believe communication is vital to understanding your pet’s health and status. Our veterinarians can be reached at the clinic or by email. If a message is left, we will return the message within 24 hours.

Are my pets’ records available to me at any time? Is there a fee?

Your pets’ records can easily be transferred, reproduced, or emailed with your permission at no cost.

Contact Us Today!

Contact us today by calling us at (281) 200-2325, or fill out the form to send us an email: