Dr. Internet

The Internet is over loaded with opinions disguised as facts in many subjects and I tend to find many bad opinions guided by emotions rather than scientific facts.  The reason I mention that is that when one goes to the Internet to gather information I want you to use the following rules:

  1. Use a credible source. After "Googling" for veterinary information go to sites ending with *.edu, *.gov and cautiously *.org.  (There are some extreme viewpoints on some, but not all *.org websites).  Please, please, please stay away from any *.com website unless I reference them, or they are referenced in one of the websites below.
  2. Be open-minded.  What I mean by that is don't go to the Internet looking for data that supports a preconceived viewpoint to validate something you "feel" is the right answer.  That's wrong! Rather, do the opposite and gather all the information first and make an educated decision.
  3. Always or Never.  Any information from resources that have extreme viewpoints, use always or never, do not cite (valid) scientific data like research papers, state that a veterinarian, or veterinarians as a whole are not a valid source for trustworthy source for information, and\or are trying to sell you something you need to move on to the next site.  Fear is one of the easiest ways to persuade someone into agreeing with your view point.  Notice that I did not say it was the best, just the easiest.  It is in our human nature as part of our defense mechanism to always believe the worst and someone more about something.

Below is a list of some of my favorite educational websites.  I'll be expanding the list in the near future. These are links to websites that have content either written by or approved by a veterinarian.  I will caution you in that some of these sources are intended for veterinary professionals, so don't let your mind wander into only reading "the bad stuff."  These sources are provided in an attempt to allow one to educate themselves on the basics of a disease process that their animal may have been diagnosed with, then to ask the veterinarian questions relating specifically to their animals case. 

Do NOT EVER attempt to give your animal any medication(s), change the administration of medications or treatments, perform any procedures or treatments, or follow any advice given from any resource including the web, including your friends, including your family, including a friend of a friend of a family member, including someone you talked to or chatted with in a blog, or anything else without talking to your veterinarian first.  Trust me when I tell you that you don't want to be "that guy."  


http://www.veterinarypartner.com/

This website is basically owned by all of the veterinarians in the United States.  All of the articles published on this website have either been written by a veterinarian and\or approved by veterinarian and veterinary panel.  I don't necessarily agree with 100% of the information that is posted on this website mainly because some of the information can vary by geographical region or variables specific to your patient.


https://www.texvetpets.org/

There is a lot written about pet health topics on the internet. As a Texas pet owner, it’s important to be aware that it’s not all accurate. Navigating through false or misleading information isn’t only confusing, it’s potentially harmful to you and your pet. You can be sure that the information you find here on TexVetPets.org is scientifically accurate—each article is peer-reviewed by two veterinarians. The vast majority of articles are written by veterinarians who are members of the Texas Veterinary Medical Association, one of the largest state veterinary associations in the US. While TexVetPets.org aims to provide you with comprehensive pet health information, regular veterinary care is a crucial element of responsible pet ownership. We’ve made it easy to find a veterinarian in your area with our Find A Veterinarian feature. Your veterinarian is the best partner you have when it comes to making sure your pet’s life is happy and healthy. TexVetPets.org brings the client-veterinarian partnership online, providing you with a pet health resource when you’re not in the exam room at the clinic.



https://www.aaha.org/pet_owner/default.aspx

The American Animal Hospital Association.  Unlike human hospitals, not all animal hospitals are required to be accredited by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA). What does accreditation mean? It means your hospital holds itself to a higher standard, and that your pet is receiving care at a hospital that has passed the highest standards in veterinary care.  We are currently working on achieving this accreditation. 


http://www.drugs.com/vet/
http://www.drugs.com/vet/

(this is a great website if you want to look up more information about a medication that your patient has been dispensed.  Keep in mind when you start looking at side effects of the medication that it is not uncommon for there to be many side effects listed and that those side effects may have nothing to do with what you are seeing in your pet.  Please do not ever discontinue giving a medication unless you talk with your doctor first.)


http://www.capcvet.org/

(CAPC, an independent council established to create guidelines for the optimal control of internal and external parasites that threaten the health of pets and people, brings together broad expertise in parasitology, internal medicine, public health, veterinary law, private practice and association leadership. Initially convened in 2002, CAPC was formed with the express purpose of changing the way veterinary professionals and pet owners approach parasite management, via best practices that better protect pets from parasitic infections while reducing the risk of zoonotic parasite transmission.)


http://www.cdc.gov/healthypets/

(This is a wonderful government-based resource that combines the information from both human medicine and veterinary medicine when disease patterns cross over from our pets to us and vice versa.)


http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/default.htm

(Kind of the same thing as above, but more scientific. None the less a good resource.)


http://www.pethealthnetwork.com/all-pet-health

Pet Health Network® is for pets and their people.  We’re a community created for people like you, by people just like you – people who have dogs, cats, and other pets as part of their families.  We’re dedicated to providing you with comprehensive and trustworthy information to ensure your four-legged family members enjoy the longest, healthiest, and happiest lives possible.

  • Information that will help you keep your pets as healthy as possible.
  • A resource to help you really understand the full range of care available to your pet.
  • A community where people who love their pets as much as you do go to share ideas, stories, pictures, and a lot more.
  • A source you can trust, in one place, developed by people who have helped shape veterinary care.

http://www.merckvetmanual.com/mvm/index.html

(The above resource I urge you to read with extreme caution as this publication is intended for veterinary professionals and much of the information that is produced in this manual requires a thorough comprehensive knowledge of veterinary medicine as a whole.)


http://www.aaep.org/info/owners

(This is a great resource for horse owners.  This website is owned by equine practitioners that pay an annual subscription to be a member.)


http://www.foalcare.com/

(The Merck Animal Health Foal Care ProgramSM is a comprehensive guide to healthcare from prebreeding through the foal's first birthday. The information you'll find here will help you with the little things like, "How much milk does a mare produce," to the big things like, "When should I deworm my foal?" )



http://idid.vet.cam.ac.uk/search.php
Inherited Diseases In Dogs

I get questions all the time about illnesses or disorders the dog is experiencing pertaining to whether or not the disease process is inherited with the breed. This website is a great resource for several inherited disorders of dogs. I would recommend that any new pet owner looking at a breed become familiar with potential health concerns associated with the breed so that they can budget accordingly.

The site is not designed as a diagnostic system, and cannot offer individual veterinary advice. If you suspect that your dog is suffering from one of these conditions, contact your veterinarian. The information in the site is correct to the best of their knowledge and belief, but it is necessarily incomplete, and there is no warranty of accuracy, express or implied.  The Inherited Diseases in Dogs Database is compiled by David Sargan.