Four Lakes Veterinary Clinic is a full-service hospital for cats and dogs.
We believe every pet should have a thorough exam each year when they are feeling well. We examine every body part, from the teeth, eyes and ears to the tip of the tail. We feel it is important to look for dental problems, check for ear infections, monitor for cataracts, feel for lumps and bumps, check mobility of the joints, listen to the heart and lungs, and feel for internal pain. We check poop samples for intestinal parasites and recommend bloodwork to establish a baseline and look for changes in internal organ function. The wellness exam is also the time to discuss health concerns, diet, behavior issues, and parasite control.
We recommend distemper, parvo, leptospirosis (DHLPP) and rabies for every dog. We also provide Bordetella (kennel cough), and a combination influenza vaccine for those dogs that are in contact with many different dogs (boarding, day care, frequent dog park visits). We have a "new and improved" Lyme vaccine recommended for all dogs at risk of tick bites.
Our cat patients receive rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, panleukopenia (FVRCP) and a yearly Purevax rabies vaccine. The Purevax rabiesvaccine contains no adjuvant - the "extra" stuff in killed rabies vaccines that stimulates the immune system and can cause injection-site cancers in some cats. For cats that go outside unsupervised, we provide a feline leukemia vaccination.
No one wants their pet to be sick, but Four Lakes is here for you if it happens. We perform diagnostic tests such as skin scrapes (to look for mites), fine-needle aspirates of lumps (to look for cancer cells), ear cytologies (to determine what is causing your pet's ear infection), urinalyses (to look for infection and crystals), eye staining (to look for ulcers), eye pressures (for glaucoma or uveitis), and x-rays. We can sedate a pet that needs sutures or a broken toenail removed, as well as reverse the sedative effects so he can walk out the front door within 20 minutes. If we don't have an appointment open, we offer drop-off services so your pet doesn't have to be in pain or discomfort for several days before she can be seen.
Every year we do heartworm testing for our dog patients. Because you never know when your dog will spit out medication, we do test all dogs, even if they are on year-round preventative. We also test for tick-borne diseases at the same time, to determine if your dog has been exposed to Lyme, Anaplasmosis, and/or Ehrlichia. We recommend baseline blood tests for all adult cats and dogs and more comprehensive testing (including a urinalysis) for those pets over 10 years of age.
Most blood is sent to an outside laboratory, with results returned generally within 24 hours. We also have a in-house lab, which we use for sick animals or those coming in for surgery. We have an incubator so we can culture urine samples in-house, before sending them to a lab for antibiotic sensitivity testing.
Fecal samples are sent to an outside laboratory to provide quality control and to make sure we aren't missing any parasites during our analysis. Our nurses will read samples from an animal with diarrhea before sending the sample to the lab.
Four Lakes Vet has a dedicated surgical suite. Surgeries performed include spays (ovariohysterectomies), neuters (including cryptorchids), cystotomies (bladder surgery), lump or tumor removals, nose resections (for those flat-faced breeds with squished nostrils), and foreign body removals/exploratory laparotomies. We have a board-certified surgeon, Dr. Elizabeth Laing, who comes to our hospital for more advanced surgeries, like cruciate ligament repairs or anal gland removals.
All our patients undergoing surgery receive an intravenous (IV) catheter to allow us to administer anesthetic medication and fluids to keep the pet hydrated. We monitor heart rate and rhythm, as well as oxygenation of the blood, body temperature, and blood pressure. All pets undergoing surgery receive pain medication before and after surgery, which improves healing and decreases anxiety in our pets.
For very small skin growths ("moles") we have a cryoprobe, that allows us to freeze the mass without having to sedate or anesthetize your pet.
Ultrasounds and additional support services
When a pet needs an ultrasound to determine the significance of a heart murmur or to get a better look at internal organs, we bring board-certified veterinarians in to the clinic. Dr. Hattie Bortnowski is an Internal Medicine specialist at the UW vet school who does cardiac ultrasounds. Dr. Deb Darien is a board-certified radiologist who performs our abdominal ultrasounds.
For those cases that require additional diagnostics or treatment, we consult and refer to the Veterinary Specialty Center (part of Veterinary Emergency Service), Madison Veterinary Specialists, Edinger Surgical Options, or the UW School of Veterinary Medicine.
Most prescriptions are able to be filled in our veterinary clinic, including antibiotics, pain medications, allergy treatments, heartworm preventative, and prescription diets. We carry the flea and tick preventatives that we consider to be the most efficatious. We also have an on-line store, which is a great place to order prescription diets and have them shipped to your home. We don't recommend other on-line pharmacies. Oftentimes these pharmacies get their products from a third party, not the drug manufacturer, and the medications could be repackaged from a foreign country . The medications may not be stored at proper temperatures and could be ineffective. In addition, if there is a problem with the efficacy of the medication, the manufacturer generally won't work with the pet owner, since the medication did not come from their veterinarian. If you do want to order medication from an on-line store, a prescription will be written for you to pick up.
In all that we do at Four Lakes Veterinary Clinic, we have you and your pet in mind. We want your visit with us to be a great experience and as fear-free and comfortable for your pet as possible.