Achat d'un animal : est-ce que ce chien est pour vous - Hôpital Vétérinaire Ste-Rose de Laval

Buy an animal: is that dog right for you?

Buy an animal

Buy an animal: is that dog right for you?

In this article, I will discuss other factors to consider when choosing a pet. The budget alone will be the subject of my third article.

Way of life

What is your working schedule?

Do you travel a lot?

A person often absent, or with unstable schedule, will have a extremely hard time to educate and inculcate cleanliness in a puppy. If you regularly work eight hours a day or more, you can’t require your dog to retain for as long.

Also keep in mind that if you travel frequently, you’ll have to pay for a boarding or find someone who will be able to care for it.


Are you bossy? Patient?

Is this your first dog?

Some breeds are more difficult to educate than others. Learn if the one you want have a stubborn or docile character.


Are you a very sporty or rather sedentary person?

From Setter to Chihuahua, ALL dogs need to run, play and go for walks, with a varying amount depending on the breed. The exercise promotes good health and prevents many behavior problems.

Keep in mind that a physically exhausted dog will be alert to listen and understand your commands. If you think you will not be able to exercise with your dog at least once a day, choose an old dog or a cat.


How many hours a day are you willing to spend on your pet?

In addition to exercise requested, some breeds, such as the Border Collie or Jack Russell, need to be further stimulated a brain activiies than others. They are generally classified as “smarter” dogs. So they get bored quickly if offers with too simple games. These breeds are recommended for experienced people who have a lot of free time and will involve their dog to their daily routine.

On the other hand, although each animal should be brushed at least once a week and has its nail trim regularly, know that some breeds such as Persians, Colley or Shih Tzu require daily grooming. I therefore recommend those to anyone take pleasure in pampering their loved one.


What is your physical strength?

Some people want a large dog like a Rottweiler for protection but fail to walk him on a leash, because its strength far exceeds that of the owners. Rather than buying a spiked collar, which too often leads to injury, invest in an obedience class or adopt a breed adapted to your own strenght.


Living in group

You live as a couple? In family ? Collocation?

Determine all the rules that the animal must respect and work in unison for education. An animal will learn much more quickly and easily if all the commands are using the same vocabulary. Also allow or forbid the same elements.

Learn about the personality of breeds because some are less recommended for infants ages.


Stephanie, Veterinary Technician


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Let’s talk Rabies

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Find a good breeder

Find a good breeder Your decision is made, you want to adopt an animal. You've thought about it and you have the budget and the time to take care of it. You also have an idea of what species and breed you seek and what kind of companion you desire. But where to find it? [...]

Brachicephalic Syndrome

Brachicephalic Syndrome Congenital and hereditary condition adquire by dogs that have a wider head and a flattened muzzle, brachicephalic breeds. The breeds most at risk are the Bulldog, Pug, Pekinese, Boxer, Boston Terrier, Shar Pei, and certain Shih Tzu and Lhasa Apso. One anomaly seen in this syndrome is stenosis of the nostrils where the [...]

Bien choisir son animal et sa race

Choose the right pet and breed for you


Choose the right pet and breed for you

Too often, people adopt an animal on impulse, without considering the adult size and life expectancy of a race, the costs to pay and the time to devote to it.

This article in three parts, will, I hope, help you to choose wisely your future life partner (cat or dog) and thereby, reduce abandonments and abusive and unnecessary euthanasia.

Let’s start with the basic questions:

Does someone in your home suffers from allergies to fur or saliva?

If this is the case, you should direct your choice to animals that are said hypoallergenic, like Poodles, Rex, Siberian  or Sphinx.

Do you already have you other animals?

Think that the more animals you have, the more you have to increase the time, maintenance and budget devoted to them. Also be aware of your city rules, because it may refuse certain breed or impose a maximum number of companions. It also has full power to enforce these rules if they are not followed.

Are you sure that your dog / cat will appreciate the arrival of another animal?

Not all individuals like to live in groups. If so, those are often animals that  may develop diseases or behavioral problems related to the stress of having a “friend / intruders” in the house.

What are you excatly looking for ?

A presence that will give you affection from time to time? (cat)

A friend for your children? (cat/dog)

A love ball that will follow you everywhere? (cat/dog)

A protector, an athlete or a hunter? (dog)


Do you live in the heart of the city or in the middle of the countryside?

Do you live in a small apartment or have a medium sized house?

Do you have a closed courtyard a relative size depending on the size of the desired dog?

The space provided to the animal is important as much for his physical needs as for his mental health

For example, a Dane or St. Bernard will suffocate in a small apartment in downtown Montreal, not to mention that it could develop joint problems.

We must also consider the neighbors. They have the right to complain, for example, for excessive barking.

In conclusion

Do research on the personality of the breed to choose as your ideal companion.

These questions already eliminate many breeds. Now put the emphasis on you, the owner. You are as a parent, that is to say that you’re both the authority and the friend of your fur ball. And it’s like your child, in the sense that he needs security, stability and a certain routine. It is dependent on you for its well-being. It’s also up to you to show him with patience what he can not do, what to do and when. It will be a mirror of your actions and your personality, So find from the start a breed that suits you.

In my next article, other factors will be discussed to help you make the right decision.

Stephanie Brunelle, Vet Tech

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Camp félinTensif à Zoo Académie - Hôpital Vétérinaire Ste-Rose de Laval

CatCamp :One dream weekend with EduCATor at Zoo Academy


CatCamp :One dream weekend with EduCATor at Zoo Academy

In September, I had the chance to follow a fantastic training with none other than Daniel Fillion and his team of educhateurs (educator for cats). If you do not already know, Educhateur is a reference in feline behavior in Quebec.

If intervenants are numerous in canine behavior, in the cat area, they are rare. So, people are used to hear about dogs with behavior problems, anxiety or aggression. Several owners consult experts to find a solution to their very particular situation.

By cons, it is relatively new to ask help for this kind of problems if it concerns a cat. Many years ago, a behavior problem would just have ended in euthanasia, no question asked. Today, most veterinarians will investigate these issues more thoroughly before agreeing to euthanize an animal that is besides that, healthy.

In veterinary clinic, we face discouraged owners every day of the behavior of their cat. May it be  because Felix urinated once more out of his litter, because it attacks your guests or it bites whenever you try to caressed it, veterinarians and technicians have more and more knowledge in the field of feline behavior to help you.

When cases are beyond us, it is where we contact our educhateurs. So, in september, I had the opportunity to improve my knowledge and expertise in this area, with a three-day unique in the world formation. I brought back with me a variety of tips and experiences to make our work more effective in clinical. The field of feline behavior is changing and evolving rapidly. What we thought true ten years ago, is no longer the same as it was five years ago or even a few months, as more and more experts in the field to address and study the issue.

In addition to this behavior formation, I was lucky enough that it was given in a beautiful location, Zoo Academie located in Nicolet, near Trois-Rivière. Its mission is to preserve, raise awareness and educate. Founded by Jacinthe Bouchard, the zoo has just celebrated its first year of existence. Expert in animal behavior and recognized around the world for over 20 years, Jacinthe Bouchard has worked with many zoos around the world, with customs and police services, and education. She is a leader in the field of enrichment, impregnation and training of animals in captivity.

At the zoo, all the animals are impregnated, which bring them to not fear humans. This technique makes the visits, exams or manipulations less stressful, and even pleasant for the animal.

In the next article, I will talk a little more about that remarquable experience I had. While you wait, I leave you with few pictures of Sayenne, a young lynx four months of age.

Marie-Christine, Veterinary Technician

Éduchateurs/ EduCATors:

Zoo Academy:

Photos are property of Vanessa Tétreault:

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La santé et les problèmes médicaux du furet - Hôpital Vétérinaire Ste-Rose de Laval

Health care and problems for ferrets

Health care

Health care and problems for ferrets

For ferrets, every year of life is approximately eight human years, which is why vets recommend an annual exam until the age of 4-5 years, then two exam per year. Here are some precautions to take to avoid more visits than this.


  • Wash your hands before handling your ferret because you could transmit it your flu.
  • They are also subject to catch the same fleas, ear mites and intestinal worms than your cat or your dog. These worms cause him diarrhea, sometimes bloody, or even an externalization of the rectum. Therefore, a stool analysis is recommended annually.
  • As the dog, if your ferret has access to the outside, it could also contract viruses such as rabies and distemper. Fortunately, you can vaccinate against these diseases. Heart worm is also a possible risk. Check with your veterinarian to know the number of doses and reminders of his vaccines and the necessary deworming.You will find below the most commonly encountered medical problems in ferrets.
Problems Observed signs Prevention / Treatment

Intestinal foreign bodies

The animal swallows an object (rubber, plastic, leather or son) which gets stuck in his digestive system and causes damage.


  • Lethargy
  • Repeated vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Face rubbing
  • Excessive salivation
  • Teeth Grinding
  • Anorexia


Follow the recommendations on the cage to prevent escapes.

Do not let your ferret roam alone in the house.

Remove objects that your ferret could destroy.


Tumor of the pancreas
  • Weakness (especially on hind legs)
  • Excessive salivation
  • Tremors
  • Lethargy
  • Weightloss
  • Rubing its mouth


This can evolve into an acute stage that will lead to hypoglycemia, unconsciousness and convulsions: quickly consult your vet.


Adrenal disease

The body of the ferret produced excessively in sex hormones and therfore its adrenal glands are working excessively.

  • Difficulty urinating (male)
  • Vulva enlarged and vaginal secretion (female)
  • Skin rash
  • Hair loss at the tail and the back


The ferret hair can grow back and fall again. This cycle can last 2 to 3 years before the hair permanently stops growing back.


*** Even in the presence of all these clinical signs, the animal may have energy and eat well. ***

Medical or surgical treatment.
Ibuprofen poisoning
(or other medications and drugs)
  • Neurological disorder
  • Digestive disorder
  • Renal failure
  • May cause death
Never give human medication without consulting your veterinarian.
Infection caused by the Corona Virus
  • Greenish diarrhea
  • Anorexia
  • Vomiting
  • Weakening
Medical treatment and support


Also, ferrets are sensitive to heat and moisture, tend to develop tumors and can catch our flu or we can catch theirs.

If you observe one or more of these signs, please contact the Veterinary St. Rose Hospital or emergency center.

Stephanie Brunelle, Veterinary technician

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Programme CSR pour chats errants - Hôpital Vétérinaire Ste-Rose de Laval

TNR Program for stray cats

TNR Program

TNR Program for stray cats

Better known under the term TNR (to trap, neuter and release), this program is a population management program for stray cats. Used in several countries around the world it is considered a humane manner and humane control of stray and feral cats.


Indeed, it has been shown that simply relocate stray cats from one place to another is not always the ideal solution. In fact, if you saw a stray cat around your house, either a female or a male, it is a sign that there are more, as females will have at least two litters per year in general.


If you decide to adopt a stray cat, it will be quickly replaced by another stray cat, the territory of the previous having been left vacant. Thus, no matter what measures you take to adopt a stray cat, the problem inevitably return, replaced by a new cat.


With TNR program, the goal is to capture and release the cat once it’s neutered. Being neutered, the cat in question continue to live in your neighborhood, but it will not happen again. So over time the general population of the area will decrease. In addition, cats will be a little less likely to fight. They still defend their territory living and hunting, but there will be no more connected to the battle during female heats and mating. This will decrease, even minimally, feline viral diseases and injuries. They will also be less likely to mark their territory with urine in your windows for example.


In order to identify neutered stray cats, an internationally recognized mark is made. This is the cut of the left ear (it is sometimes possible to be the right, but the left is more commonly used and recognized). A clean cut of the tip of the ear is done under anesthesia. The procedure is not more painful than sterilization itself. Sometimes a V-cut is also used.


That way, the pounds that would capture the cats subsequently will know immediately that this cat is neutered and left in the environment in order to control overpopulation.


Obviously, even if the cats become more affectionate after neutering, this program encourages not to adopt them in your home, in order to control the population of stray cats outside, in the neighborhood.


If you have questions, do not hesitate to contact us.

Hospital Team Veterinarian Ste-Rose


P.S. Please note that regulation of the City of Laval contains articles about stray cats.


Marie-Christine, TSA

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Le furet - Hôpital Vétérinaire Ste-Rose de Laval

The ferret

The ferret

The ferret

The temperament of a ferret is easily comparable to that of a cat. This is a very intelligent and playful animal: you can easily teach him some tricks. But, as a cat, you can leave home a few days without problem, by providing enough food and water during your absence. It is comfortable to live alone as much as in community, but the cage should be adapted accordingly. It can also learn to live with other animals.


A ferret sleeps on average 20 hours a day and has a life expectancy of 5 to 8 years. Ferrets are a very curious animals, loves to bite and to sneak in little nooks. So it is better to let children handle them under your supervision, and properly secure your home so it’s «ferret’s proof».


Since ferrets are carnivores, commercial food specially formulated for ferrets are recommended. It is also possible to offer a high quality cat food. Please ask us. It is also important that your ferret has access to a bowl of water and his food at all times. Treats should not be given more than twice a week and, in very small quantities.


The Cage

Ferrets are very agile and strong animals for their size. The cage should be sturdy, specially designed for ferrets: ideally, it will have several floors and is well ventilated. Feel free to install their hammock and give them blankets as enhancements because they love to hide. You can get your ferret to do his business in a non-clumping litter, placed in a corner of his cage. When he wanders the house, put a second litter that may access quickly.

Toys and general care

Get it strong toys that can not be destroyed. Ferrets also like playing with paper bags or cardboard boxes but this activity requires your presence. Do not let your ferret out of its cage unattended and make sure that no object that can be swallowed within its range.


Cut its claws frequently and brush regularly. Also purchase laxative paste against hairballs, sold in veterinary clinic. You should give it especially during the shed (fall and spring) to prevent impaction that may block the intestines.


Ferrets are mustelidaes, a close species to skunks. As so, ferrets secretes a smell coming form their sebaceous glands all over their body. This odor is permanent, even when removal of the the anal sacs is done. The baths help to reduce this odor. These must be made with a shampoo designed for cats or ferrets about once a week or as recommended by your veterinarian.


If you have questions, please contact the Veterinary St. Rose Hospital. A second article will be published in the coming weeks.


Stéphanie Brunelle, Veterinary Technician

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Voyager avec ou sans son animal - Hôpital Vétérinaire Ste-Rose de Laval

Travel with or without your pet


Travel with or without your pet

Planning a trip is complicated, especially when you have a pet.

The options:

1 - Go without your pet:

Many animals are very attached to their routine and their things. The stress of being in an unfamiliar environment with new people can cause various problems (destruction, anorexia, etc.) or they may develop a medical condition that was before latent. It is often preferable, particularly for cats, to find someone that your pet knows well and which will go to your home and care for him. In addition, this person will take the time to observe its general attitude, to detect any anomaly that betrays a health problem. If this is not possible, do some research to find the ideal boarding. Note that some veterinarians offer this service.

2- Bring your pet with you:

First, check to see if your destination requires specific vaccination or other obligations. Sometimes you have to fill out a long form with your veterinarian, especially when moving to another country, and this procedure can sometimes take weeks. You can also contact the Ste-Rose Veterinary Hospital to inform you about deworming recommended.

Search about the transportation you’ll take, places you’ll go and activities to do, and identify which ones allow pets and about their specific policies.

Then, try to find the most direct route to the destination. If you get the chance, stop every two hours to allow your pet to exercise, relieve himself and have a snack. The ride will be longer but more pleasant for you and for him. Obviously, never leave your pet alone in the vehicle, as the temperature inside the car rises very quickly. It will inevitably suffer from a heat stroke more quickly than you think and this can cause death.

You should also make a travel kit for your pet that will contain his favorite toy, leash, food and fresh water. Get a belt made for your pets for more safety on the road. If you use a cage, it must be solid, safe, and have a flat floored, be large enough to allow your pet to turn around, lie down and stand up easily. Also make sure he wears his collar, featuring much information as possible at all times.

If your pet is not used to long drives, bring it for a few short trips in the previous days so he gets used to it. See our article on the cage to use it in a comforting way, several days or weeks in advance.

Finally, if your pet as motion sickness or is anxious by nature, it is possible to obtain natural products like probiotics or medication. This could improve its general condition during your vacation. Do not hesitate to contact us.

Have a good trip!
Stephanie Brunelle, T.S.A.

Here are some links that will help you in your research: (Canada) (USA) (Quebec)

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Parlons porcs épics et moufettes - Hôpital Vétérinaire Ste-Rose de Laval

Let’s talk porcupines and skunk

Let's talk

Let's talk porcupines and skunk

When your dog has a dispute with a porcupine, it is important to immediately contact your veterinarian for a quick appointment. We often hear that we must cut the quills as soon as possible. This is a myth! One must be very careful to remove those famous quill and especially not cut them.


It is usually essential to do so under anesthesia for the procedure is not painful for the animal. Also because the quills are often found in the mouth or palate of the dog. You have to be very delicate so that the quills do not break and they must be removed by the base of it. If the quill is cut, they will migrate elsewhere within the body of your pet, they encapsulate and will not be accessible. This can cause long-term complications, such as a body rejection or infection.


Regarding skunks, they produce a very smelly liquid from their anal glands. Contrary to belief, this is not urine! If the dog gets it into the mouth, it is normal to see him drool profusely as this can taste very bad. Also, if he has some in the eyes, it may be it irritating even to cause conjunctivitis and other more serious problems. In this case, you can try to apply lubricating eye drops to rinse. By cons, it is recommended to consult your veterinarian to eliminate any more serious problems.


As for the smell, there are products like shampoo or soap that you can put in the wash to clean your companion’s bedding or your clothes. There are also homemade shampoo recipes against those odors. Tomato juice works only rarely with animals and it can stain his coat.


For more information please contact a member of the Ste-Rose Veterinary Hospital, it will be our pleasure to assist you.


Catherine Lapierre, TSAc

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La Stérilisation - Hôpital Vétérinaire Ste-Rose de Laval




 Too many animals are euthanized and abandoned every year, after being born and finding themself without a home. A big part of the solution to this problem of pet overpopulation is in neutering these. And as pet owner, this responsibility comes back to us. Only in Quebec, we talk about tens of thousands of cats and dogs euthanized for lack of home. It’s huge!

               The neutering of males, commonly called castration, is to remove both testicles surgically. In females, it’s called ovary-hysterectomy when the ovaries and uterus are removed surgically. We also talking of ovariectomy when only the ovaries are withdrew. But spaying is the common term use for female, whatever the method used.

               Let’s begin by talking about heat. In fertile dog bitches we may observe blood flow who usually last between 2 and 3 weeks. They have 2 heats per year. This may vary from one female to the other, as their is many variation in dogs’ size and breeds. The first heat of a large dog occurs generally later than a small dog. In cats, there is no blood flows. They rather have a very  unpleasant meow they emit very often overnight preventing their owners from sleeping! They are also over gluers, and more affectionate.

               The non-neutered animals can also have unpleasant sexual behaviors, such as protection of territory. This can manifest itself in different forms, like aggression, fights or urine marking. These behaviors are most frequently observed in fertile males. Regardless of gender, an animal, that is not sterilized, will be more likely to want to run away.

               The ideal is to do the surgery of females before their first heat. At the Ste-Rose Veterinary Hospital we want the animal to have at least 6 months, that the reproductive system is well developed and to ensure that anesthesia is safe. Moreover, the fact that the animal reach 6 months of age, let us see if the babies teeth have all fallen. Often, especially in small breed of dogs, they do not fall, and that can them teeth problems. In this case, since the animal is already under anesthesia for the neutering, we take the opportunity to remove those remaining teeth.

               By cons, when the animal reaches the age of 6 months, we recommend the neutering as soon as possible, to prevent that the dog falls into heat. For males we also agree to do it starting from 6 months. But, the ideal is to do it as soon as possible once they have reached their six months of age. There are many schools of different thoughts on the subject and no reliable studies and long-term to confirm if there really a risk or not, linked to early neutering. That is why we do not take the chance of doing it younger.

               The fact of neutering the animal as soon as possible has a positive impact on the health of the animal. This greatly reduces the risk that the animal develops tumors. Indeed, a fertile female will have an increased risk of developing mammary gland tumors. Moreover, neutering cancels the risk that a female develops a uterine infection (see previous article on pyometra). For its part, a fertile male will be more likely to develop tumors of the testicles and prostates problems.

               With the call of nature, an incident can happen so easily and to quickly, despite our best care ans surveillance. Remember that by neutering your pet, you’re not only helping to maintain its health and therefore you extend life expectancy, but also you can help reduce the number of orphans destined for certain death.

Catherine Lapierre, certified veterinary technician

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Les Puces - Hôpital Vétérinaire Ste-Rose de Laval




With the arrival of good weather and heat, also comes the arrival of the fleas. These parasites, although they are very small can cause many headaches to the infested animal as to its owner!

A single female flea lays up to 50 eggs a day, and up to 2000 eggs during her life. When we begin to see fleas on the animal or in the environment, it means that they are present for at least a month. Only the fleas are visible to the naked eye and they represent only 5% of the infestation.

Let us summarize the life cycle of fleas. Adult fleas, which can live up to 100 days, bite the animal and feed on the blood, and this, in a few seconds or minutes after arriving on their host. After a good meal, they mate and in the space of 24 hours the females produce eggs. They fall everywhere in the environment both outside and inside, representing 50% of the infestation. Then comes the stage of larvae. Representing 35% of the infestation, they are like small worms, able to move and hide. They prefer dark places. That’s why they are often found at the bottom of carpets, bedding or in any other place away from light. After that, the larvae become pupae. At this point, small cocoons can remain in the house for several months, even up to one year. The pupae represent 10% of the infestation. When conditions are favorable, the flea comes out of its cocoon and is already looking for a host. Then the cycle starts again from the beginning.

There are preventive treatments, to avoid ending up with an infestation. Flea prevention in domestic animals can begin from the month of May. But, from one year to another there can be changes depending if there is early heat or adequate moisture for their survival. Prevention must be made until November, or until there are 3 nights of freezing ground. Often people stop prevention prematurely because cold starts, but it is often the most risky period for infestations. The fleas look for the heat, which they find with your pet’s body heat.

In the case of a flea infestation, there are also treatments available. You have to treat all the animals of the house for a minimum of six months, as the dormant pupae can last very long in the environment. By treating the animals in the house and letting them wander wherever they usually walk, the environment will be treated simultaneously. It is also advised to vacuum often, especially on carpets, and wash and dry heat tissue.

Contrary to popular belief, not all animals that have fleas will scratch. Only those who are allergic will do it, causing allergic dermatitis by flea bites. A flea-infested animal may experience itching and agitation. In case of severe infestations, anemia can be noted, since fleas feed on the animal blood. Finally, they can also lead to tapeworms’ infection, which are intestinal parasites. Fleas can also bite humans, even if they prefer to stay on animals. If you get bitten by fleas, you will see small red dot appear on your skin, which can cause itching.

Don’t hesitate to contact a member of staff of the Ste-Rose Veterinary Hospital, to obtain more information on the subject. Prevention can be already started and could save you a lot of trouble!

Catherine Lapierre, certified animal health technician

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