October 2013 Newsletter: Titre Testing, New Vaccine Protocols, Leptospirosis, Halloween and More.
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A basset hound with big ears, listening.

Titre Testing is here!

For some vaccines, titre tests can be an alternative to booster shots.

Do I need to vaccinate my pet? Is it safe? How often should it be done? Is there an alternative? There is no doubt that vaccines have done a great deal to curb the spread of infectious disease. But how often should they be administered? How long does protection last? At Blue Cross Animal Hospital we monitor the recommendations of The American Animal Hospital Association, The World Small Animal Veterinary Association and various university researchers. Over the years their advice has changed as vaccines and diseases have evolved. Recently, as well as introducing titre testing to determine immunity, we have updated our vaccine protocols to reflect current thinking and available vaccines. Currently titre tests are only available for some dog vaccines, but cat tests should be available soon. Learn more about what we're doing in the blog posts below:

Our Changing Vaccine Protocols

Core Vaccines: What are they?

Vaccine Titres: To vaccinate or not to vaccinate.  

A racoon on the grass


What is it?

A very serious disease that can cause severe liver and kidney disease in dogs.

How is it spread?

It is present in the urine of infected raccoons and skunks. With the large numbers of racoons and skunks in Toronto, we are seeing increasing numbers of cases of Leptospirosis.

What Can I do?

There are both prevention and vaccination options. Read more on the blog.

Adoption Updates

These two wonderful cats are both currently residents of Blue Cross Animal Hospital. If you or anyone you know has room in your home and heart for one of these beautiful companions, please contact us for details at 416-469-1121, or email
Mito, a black cat looking for a home.
Mito needs a home! Read more about Mito.
Tangle, a brown tabby Cat.
After raising her family of kittens, Tangle is ready for her own forever home. Read more about Tangle.

Did You Know?

Interesting cat fact: all calico cats are female.

A dachshund dressed as a hot dog.

Halloween Tips

Halloween is only a couple of weeks away. Here's a round up of the most important things to remember around the holiday if you have pets.

1. Make sure that costumes are safe and comfortable for your pet, and always supervise them closely while they are in costume.
  • Costumes should allow your pet full use of their senses, including sight, hearing and touch.
  • Costumes should not interfere with your pets breathing.
  • Ensure your pet will be fully mobile and not trip.
  • Costumes should be free of small objects which would pose a choking hazard if they became detached.
2. Don’t let your pet get into the Halloween Candy. Chocolate can be fatal to dogs. Sugarless gum and anything containing xylitol can cause low blood sugar and liver failure. Raisins have been linked to kidney failure. If you think your pet has eaten any of these things, call us right away at 416-469-1121. A veterinarian will need to induce vomiting and hospitalize your pet for supportive emergency care. If we are closed, call your closest emergency veterinary hospital.

3. Keep your pets indoors. All pets are at risk from increased traffic on your street. Cats, particulary black cats which have long been associated with Halloween, are at risk from Halloween pranks that get out of hand. As always, make sure your pet is wearing tags and a reflective collar in case he or she escapes.

4. Warn your children not to approach or pat any unknown animals throughout the evening.

Blue Cross Animal Hospital at the Smiling Blue Skies Walk to End Canine Cancer

On September 28th, we participated once again in the Smiling Blue Skies Walk to End Canine Cancer. The walk raised over $44k to support cancer research at the University of Guelph. This year technician team members Nejra and Yvonne ran a water station, providing water to both two and four-legged participants. Thanks to everyone else who dropped off, picked up, and showed up to walk. We're looking forward to next year already!

See more pictures and links to info about the walk.

Nejra and Yvonne at the Smilng Blue Skies Walk to End Canine Cancer.

Check out the Webstore!

As the days get shorter, don't forget our webstore offers free home delivery on pet products (non-prescription) over $75. Sign up for the webstore.
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