A good vet is a vet who deeply cares for animals and Dr Ivan Dodovski is such a person. He dreamed of becoming a vet since a child and he turned his childhood dream into a reality after graduating in Bulgaria and training in Italy. Then, Dr Dodovski returned to Bulgaria with an even bolder dream: to open his own clinic.
Royal Vet is 8 years old now, a place where non-human patients are treated with the same professionalism, care and respect as human ones. The clinic started as a small practice but is now equipped with modern technology for laboratory and image diagnostics and staffed by a team of dedicated professionals.
Royal Vet started small but later expanded. Tell us more about your team?
The first to join was Dr Toma Shtilianov. He started as an trainee and after he graduated I invited him at Royal Vet as I recognised his potential. A recent arrival is Dr Martin Peshev, who has been dedicated to veterinary medicine since his first years at university. He is very skilful and genuinely warm person who loves animals. Our groomer Svetla Zaharieva is overwhelmed with work as she is a real talent and gives every dog the best appearance of its particular breed. We also have two horse specialists, Gabriela Veneva and Gergana Naydenova-Angelova, who is a sought-after vet by organisers of horse races. Together, we achieved a lot.
Dr Toma Shtilianov
Why did you name the clinic Royal Vet?
In monarchies, such a title usually denotes that the service is the best possible. I wanted to provide my patients with the best healthcare, so I chose a name that reflects that.
How pets show us, humans, that they are sick?
When you live with an animal you more or less develop a strong connection and start to recognise their mood and condition. It is just like with humans where a significant part of communication is non-verbal, so you can always sense if a friend is feeling under the weather and you can try to help them. So, an animal can communicate with you that something is wrong with its behaviour. You just need to look out for symptoms like bad mood, lack of desire to play, refusal to eat. More serious symptoms like vomiting, diarrhoea, fatigue, trudging of a paw, turning of the head, tears in the eyes, cough require to consult with a vet immediately.
It is best to visit the vet even when spotting mild signs such as lack of energy and appetite, as sometimes more serious diseases don't have clear symptoms.
Can prophylaxis help?
Yes. Often a patient arrives at the clinic for a vaccination and during the check-up we discover that the dog suffers from a serious heart condition. Organ deficiencies and some infectious diseases can also be diagnosed only with a blood test. Recently, with global warming, a number of diseases transmitted by ticks, fleas, mosquitoes have started to appear. Often, they have no visible symptoms. That is why a regular visit to the vet once a year is recommended. During the visit the dog's heart is checked and blood is analysed. The owner is consulted on the best care, the pet's activity and eating habits. The earlier a disease is diagnosed, the better.
Should cats who stay at home be vaccinated, too?
Yes. An apartment is not a sterile environment. Viruses can arrive in many ways: with the shoes or the clothes of inhabitants and visitors, with food or other contaminated objects that the cat, which is a curious animal, feels obliged to check. Viruses even float the air streams. That is why a cat should be vaccinated regularly. Prophylaxis agains internal parasites is also recommended every two months. Families expecting a baby should also check their cat for toxoplasmosis.
What are the most common diseases in dogs?
Recently a significant number of cases are vector diseases, which are transmitted by living organisms such as insects. Owners underestimate the danger of diseases spread by ticks. That is why the dog should be provided with the best prevention against external parasites. The earlier the prevention begins, the lesser the risks for the dog developing a serious and expensive to treat disease.
What should we know about pet care?
You should remember that a pet is not a toy. A dog requires at least two hours a day to run, play, walk – even if it lives in a yard. The more active the breed is, the more time it needs.
Owners tend to underestimate the importance of proper nutrition, and buy cheap brands of pet food. These, however, do not provide the dog with the nutrients it needs or are made with low-quality ingredients that can damage the animal's organs in the long-term. When looking for pet food, choose one with the least amount of crude ash and also less fats and attractants that are added to make it more appetising to the pet. Young and active animals need more proteins, but older animals don't as they can damage the kidneys. In their aim to stimulate bone development, many owners give young animals additional amounts of calcium and phosphorus, but overdosing can cause serious joint problems, so these additives should be taken after proper medical examination.
Giving bones to the dog is wrong as pieces can get stuck in the intestines. Surgical intervention, which is always a risk, is the only solution in this case.
Dogs which grow fast need to be X-rayed for dysplasia. All dogs need regular yearly vaccination and prophylaxis against external and internal parasites, including dirofylaria.
The pet should be washed as rarely as possible as washing damages the hair and the skin. When it is needed, paraben-free cosmetics should be used.
The dog should be trained to know its place in the family. Some pets are too spoiled and successfully manipulate their owners for extra food. Consequently, such dogs suffer from liver and kidney problems, chronic gastroenteritis.
Small dogs, when walking unleashed in the streets or shopping centres, often have their tiny paws stuck in elevators and other crevices.
Is dressing dogs really needed?
When the temperatures are low, breeds with short hair do need clothes. The breed selection has taken them too far from the primordial dog and now they are not equipped with enough fur to sustain their temperature in winter. For the same reason, most of the breeds should be groomed in summer, as otherwise they will overheat.
Sofia, Sveta Troitsa, Block 347 A, next to Nedelya Pastry Shop
call 24/7: 087 611 2150
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