So the nice folks at PetMD gave me a buzz and asked if I’d write a second blog for their new Puppy Center. As luck would have it, I recently read an article by Scott Shriner — the bassist for Weezer, one of my favorite bands — about saying “yes.” 

Thus, despite some reservations, I said “sure.”

I know I’m a vet, and I’m supposed to be an expert at all things animal, and I’ve been at this for 13 years now (and in the business for over 20 years). However, a puppy is only a puppy for a year or so. I only see it roughly three times during its first four months and once again to neuter the boys (I stopped doing abdominal surgeries about 11 years ago, so my more surgery-loving colleagues handle the spays on the girls).

So, for every patient I see — assuming I started seeing it as a pup — I only spend maybe an hour and a half with it during the puppy stage. The rest of the dog’s life I spend dealing with adult, middle age, and senior dog issues.

A quick Google search reveals that there are only two textbooks on the subject of veterinary pediatrics. One of which is a second edition (published in 1995). I think the original came out in the ‘70s because my 1969 graduate boss has it and I used it once, but the info was so archaic that I decided to just “wing it” instead. The other one just came out in 2010 and I’ll probably be buying it, because it actually looks like a good reference.

From a personal standpoint, I just finished raising my own puppy: Mia, my now 18-month-old black Lab. She is the first puppy that I’ve raised from “scratch.” The insight I gained from that experience is priceless.

So, I decided to take this blog gig to:

  1. Brush up on my pediatrics knowledge.
  2. Share that knowledge with you.
  3. Maybe entertain you a little in the process.

You, of course, will help set the pace of this blog. Also, let me know if you have any puppy related issues, concerns, questions, anecdotes, etc. and I can try to cover them in future issues.

Dr. Vivian Cardoso-Carroll

Pic of the day: Full-grown Mia by Me