Frequently Asked Questions
Below are some of the most common questions we have had during our 10 years on Guam.
For questions not answered below, please contact the office at (671) 646-CARE (2273).
What are your business hours?
Wise Owl Animal Hospital is open Monday - Saturday with hours as follows:
8AM - 8:00PM on Mondays, Tuesday and Wednesday.
8AM - 6:00PM on Thursday, Fridays and Saturdays.
We are closed on Sundays.
How old does my pet need to be to receive his/her first vaccine?
Core vaccinations are those that every puppy and kitten should receive.
Puppies receive their first core vaccine as close to 37 days old (5.5 weeks), or older, as possible. At this time, they are vaccinated against Distemper, Hepatitis, Parainfluenza and Parvo virus. They can also be vaccinated against bordatella. Puppies continue to be vaccinated every 3-4 weeks until they are 16 weeks of age or older. Their last vaccine will also include Leptospirosis in the vaccination at no extra cost.
Kittens receive their first vaccinations at 37 days (5.5 weeks) of age. In Guam the feline core vaccines are for feline Panleukopenia virus (Cat Distemper/Enteritis) and feline Viral Respiratory Disease Complex - which consists of Calicivirus ("Calici"), feline Herpesvirus 1 ("Rhino") and Chlamydia (Feline Pneumonitis). These vaccines are generally combined in a single shot, given when a kitten is about 6 weeks old. Kittens also continue to be vaccinated every 3-4 weeks until around the age of 14 weeks of age. It is also recommeneded to vaccinate your kitten against feline leukemia if it is exposed to outdoor cats.
Learn more about important vaccines for your new pet here.
How much does it cost to get my pet vaccinated?
Wise Owl Animal Hospital strives to make all pet care affordable. Young puppies and kittens whose mother has been a part of our Pregnancy and Birthing program receive their examinations at no cost until they have completed all their vaccines at around 16 weeks of age. The cost of the vaccines themselves range based on the vaccine given. Contact our office for most recent pricing.
When do I start my pup on puppy food?
Newborn puppies receive complete nutrition from their mother’s milk for the first four weeks of life. Mom's milk is 100 percent perfect for their needs, so there is no need to feed them anything else. In the event that the mother dog is ill or doesn’t produce enough milk—or if the pups are found as orphans—it may be necessary to feed a commercial milk replacer. If you find yourself in this situation, please contact our office for product and feeding recommendations.
We suggest either puppy or kitten formula that you can buy in powder or liquid form. Another acceptable choice is goat's milk.
Puppies generally begin eating puppy food around three or four weeks of age. Start with very soupy type food. Puppies often play with their food when it is first introduced, but they will quickly learn what to do with it! By the time the pups are completely weaned at seven to eight weeks old, they should be eating their dry food consistently.
Our office has a variety of foods available. Ask one of our vets or technicians about which one would be recommended for your new pup.
When can I get my dog/cat spayed/neutered?
It is recommended that dogs be spayed/neutered no earlier than 6 months of age and cats no earlier than 4-5 months of age. Modern veterinary research has proven that spaying/neutering pets before six months of age absolutely interferes with healthy development. Dogs and cats need their hormones to complete their development properly. If dogs are spayed/neutered at less than 6-9 months of age (cats at less than 4-5 months - especially female cats), the list of side effects is very extensive.
Learn more about spaying or neutering and the common myths assosiated with these procedures here.
Can my pet get heartworm if it's an inside pet?
Yes, inside pets can get heartworm. It is a common misconception that "inside pets" are immune or will have no contact with the environmental factors that can lead to heartworm. Although your pet may have limited exposure to the outside environment, disease carrying insects such as mosquittos can make their way into your home and infect your pet. We suggest protecting all pets against heartworm, fleas and ticks to ensure their overall health. Learn more about worms, fleas and ticks here.
How can I tell if my dog or cat has worms?
Symptoms of an internal worm infestation can varry significantly. It is important to know that sometimes animals demonstrate few to no outward signs of infection despite having a potentially serious health problem. In these cases the only way to diagnose a worm infection is through a fecal exam done at our office.
Other common signs your pet may have worms include:
Visible worms or eggs in feces - This is the most common way to confirm that your pet has worms. However, not all kinds of worms are visible to the naked eye.
Visible worms in fur, or area around rear - Tapeworms, in particular, may appear as small moving segments, which later dry out to resemble grains of rice.
Scratching or rubbing of rear on the ground or against furniture - if your pet shows signs of itchiness around the rear, it may be irritated by worms in the area. However, this could also be due to problems with anal glands (completely unrelated to worms) or other conditions. Please schedule an appointment with our office if your pet shows this behaviour.
Vomiting with visible worms - if your pet has worms, you may also see them in your pet's vomit.
Bloated stomach or belly - This is another common symptom of worms, often seen in puppies and kittens who contract worms from their mother.
Weakness, increased appetite, constant hunger and weight loss - If your pet has worms, the worms are stealing their nutrition. Your pet may be weak or constantly hungry, and in severe cases, may be losing weight. If your pet is showing these symptoms please schedule an appointment to see one of our vets who can help you manage treatment.
Diarrhea, particularly with blood in it - Diarrhea can be indicative of worms or other serious conditions. Bloody diarrhea can also indicate other very serious disease and you should contact us immediately if you see this.
Some parasitic worms are hazards for humans as well. Learn more about worms and other parasites here.
How do I get rid of fleas and ticks on my pet?
Both fleas and ticks thrive in the warm environment here on Guam and they love the soft, warm fur of dogs and cats. These insects feed on your pet’s blood and can cause health problems ranging from allergic reactions to serious tick-borne illnesses. So it is important to take care of fleas and ticks immediately, for the health of your pet and your family.
Pets can easily pick up fleas when outdoors. Indoor cats can get them even if they just go out on the patio or share their home with a dog. Female fleas can lay 40 to 50 eggs a day. That can lead to an infestation in just days. For every flea you see on your pet, it is estimated there are 100 more in your house. This is because when fleas lay eggs on your pet, some eggs may fall off and hatch on your carpet, bed, or other furniture. The new fleas then target you and your pet, feed on your blood, and lay more eggs. Carpets and humid areas are favorites for fleas. Learn how to create a tick free zone at home here.
You can feel ticks when you pet your cat or dog, and you can see them. They most often attach near the head, neck, ears, or paws. On cats, they're usually found around the ears and eyes. Ticks can carry diseases. If you find a tick on your pet, try to remove it as soon as possible. Skip gasoline, nail polish, petroleum jelly, alcohol, or a hot match. These methods can force infected fluids back into the bite. Instead:
Use gloves or tissue to cover your hands.
Grasp the tick with tweezers from the side, by its head, close to the skin.
Pull straight up. Don't twist.
Don't squeeze (or pop!) the bloated belly.
Wash the bite area and your hands! You can’t catch tick-borne diseases directly from your pet, but the same ticks that bite your animals can nibble on you, too. When you remove a tick from your animal, don't touch the tick's blood.
If you are uncomfortable removing a tick from your pet, we are happy to do this for you.
Flea and tick shampoos are used for killing the fleas and ticks that are already on your pet. They don’t work as well to prevent future fleas or ticks. Make sure you get the right kind. Some products for dogs can kill cats. Our office staff is happy to help you find an appropriate flea and tick shampoo for your immediate needs.
To prevent future flea and ticks on your pet and in your home, we recommend all pets be on a preventative program. Wise Owl preventative programs range to include products that require biweekly, monthly, 3-month, 8-month or yearly application. Find the program that is right for you and your pet.
Learn more about fleas and ticks here.
Learn more about our preventative programs here.
How often do I need to come back to get my pet groomed?
A clean pet is a happy pet. How often your furry friend needs to be groomed will depend on your pet. Do they like to find their way into sticky or dirty situations? Do they have long hair and/or shed a lot? Baths and grooming can help keep your pet feeling (and smelling) clean. With their built-in grooming tools (tongue and teeth) cats are equiped to take care of their own hair care needs. Though a grooming appointment can help rid them of dead or matted hair. It is also recommended that dogs bath at least once every three months. Learn about our sanitary cuts and basic grooming packages for dogs and cats here.
When can I get my puppy/kitten dewormed?
Hookworms and roundworms are the most common intestinal worms found in puppies and kittens. Roundworms compete with your pet for food, while hookworms live on blood, causing anemia. Don't wait until you are sure your pet has parasites before deworming because they may have already caused damage by that time.
Worms in puppies and kittens are common. This growth phase of their life is when they are most susceptible! Knowing when to worm puppies and kittens is important. Wise Owl Animal Hospital recommends deworming puppies and kittens at 8-10 days old, again at 21 days old, then with every vaccine starting at 37 days old. When your pet gets vaccinated the Veterinarian will determine if other additional dewormings will be needed and when. Continue their deworming treatment again at monthly intervals since parasites are always present on Guam.
Wise Owl Animal Hospital has many deworming and parasite prevention products available in our office. See our Parasite Prevention plans here.
Parasite prevention is very important for indoor cats as well! Learn why here.
I would like to board my dog/cat. Do I need to bring anything with my pet?
Wise Owl Animal Hospital is happy to have your pet stay with us for a period of time. We offer regular and luxury boarding facilities for your furry friend(s). Food is included in all boarding so there is no need for you to bring anything with you other than your pet. However some of our clients like to bring their dog or cat's bed, a blanket from home or a family member's t-shirt with them. Putting items with your scent on them can be calming for pets when they are being put in a new environment.
Learn more about boarding options at Wise Owl Animal Hospital here.
We found a stray animal. What should we do?
If you found a stray animal and want to keep it or give it to someone, you should have it checked out as soon as possible for deworming and other problems.
If you do not want to keep the stray animal, there are Pet Stores that may take the pet or the local shelter - GAIN (Guam Animals in Need). However, please understand that most of the animals that go to GAIN are euthanized.