Our Services:Avian Care:
Because of our special interest in avian and exotic pet medicine, all of our veterinarians have advanced training in avian medicine and surgery. In fact, since 1987, a veterinarian from Littleton Animal Hospital has attended the annual Association of Avian Veterinarians (AAV) continuing education conference every year. We regularly participate in avian and exotic rounds and give presentations on our cases at meetings.
The following are some examples of the services and equipment we use to provide for the needs of our bird patients:
- Prevention and wellness exams*
- Nutrition counseling, diets, and supportive care
- Temperature and humidity controlled incubators for our hospitalized patients
- Nebulizers for medicating our bird patients with respiratory problems
- An anesthesia machine especially for small patients complete with a ventilator
- Radiology services: We have high-detail digital x-ray equipment for small patients and, if needed, can perform barium contrast series to outline specific parts of the gastrointestinal tract.
- Small-gauge needles, intravenous (IV) catheters, and air sac intubation tubes
- Surgical services: We perform soft tissue and orthopedic surgeries and have certain equipment to make this as safe as possible. We use an Ellman radiosurgery unit for minimal bleeding, magnification lenses for optimal precision, micro-surgery instruments for accuracy, and clear surgical drapes for proper monitoring of patient's respiratory status.
- Endoscopy services for surgical sexing and minimally invasive surgical procedures or biopsies
- Specific laboratory examinations for sexing as well as diagnosis of avian diseases using blood, droppings, cloacal and choanal swabs, and feathers
- Behavioral counseling for such problems as aggression and feather-picking
- Lupron injections for chronic egg-laying patients
- Necropsy services for deceased birds
- In-house compounded medications as well as an available compounding pharmacy for precise dosing and tasty flavors to make medicating easier for both the owner and the pet
- **Wing, nail, and beak trims for birds that have had an exam within the past year
- Leg band removal
We recommend that birds be fasted prior to their appointments. This will make the examination easier for the vet. It will also be safer for the bird since stressed birds can regurgitate food and then inhale it, leading to pneumonia. Please pull your bird's food 3-4 hours before putting them in the car.
**We will not perform wing, nail, or beak trims on any birds unless they have had an examination by a veterinarian at Littleton Animal Hospital within the past year. We require an examination for the safety of your pet. Some birds may have underlying health problems that may go unnoticed (heart disease, respiratory disease, underlying bacterial infections, etc.). Grooming procedures may be stressful for some avian patients. If your bird has a health problem you are not aware of, these grooming procedures may place your pet at an increased risk for complications.
About Us:Unusual Veterinary Cases:Baby Cockatiel with Scissors Beak
This baby cockatiel (shown in Figure 1) has an upper and lower beak that are not properly aligned. This condition is commonly known as "scissors beak." The cause is speculated, but not known. Looking at the left side of the photo in Figure 1, you can see how the upper beak is displaced towards the bird's right side.
In order to correct this deformity, we placed a wire implant through the bird's frontal bone while it was under anesthesia (see Figure 2). There is a hook at one end of the wire to which a rubber band is attached. The other end of the rubber band is placed around the upper beak in order to place tension on it and pull it into the correct position. While the implant was in place, the cockatiel was given pain medication and oral antibiotics to prevent infection.
The implant was left in place for 2 weeks, then removed. Figure 3 shows the baby cockatiel after implant removal. There is still some minor swelling at the surgery site, but the beak is now properly aligned.
Now the baby cockatiel is nearly full-grown, happy, and healthy! (Figure 4)
About Us:Unusual Veterinary Cases:Budgie with Crop Stones
Shown in Figure 1 is a 9 year old budgie who came in for its annual examination. The budgie had no health issues according to the owner and was acting normally at home. Everything also appeared normal on his physical exam except for two hard masses that were felt within the bird’s crop.
We decided to take radiographs (x-rays) of the budgie (see Figure 2) to try to determine what these masses were. The bird was anesthetized briefly with gas anesthesia to keep him still and properly positioned while we took the x-rays. While using anesthesia does have some risks, the risks are usually very low in an otherwise healthy bird. The procedure is also much less stressful to the bird when performed while it is under anesthesia compared to being awake. In the x-ray shown in Figure 2, you can see two round mineral densities in the crop.
After reviewing the budgie’s x-rays, it was decided that the best course of action would be to surgically remove the masses before they could cause problems by blocking the outflow of the crop into the rest of the gastrointestinal tract. We proceeded with surgery to remove these two crop stones, or ingluvioliths, from the budgie. Surgery was relatively quick as was the budgie's recovery. We were unable to find a cause for the stones in this bird, but possible theories include an underlying crop infection or any disease causing decreased intestinal motility. Some ingluvioliths have been shown to have seed husks in their centers! (Figure 3 shows the removed crop stones.)
This case stresses the importance of avian annual exams, which allow us to discover abnormalities early and hopefully fix them before serious health problems can occur.
Our Services:Emergency Care
We see emergencies during our normal hospital hours. If we determine that your pet requires overnight nursing care or a level of specialty we cannot provide here, we will co-ordinate your pet’s referral to the appropriate critical care or specialty hospital.
In the event of an emergency during our normal hospital hours, please call ahead if possible and proceed directly to our practice. Our main telephone number is (978) 486-3101.
For after-hours emergencies, we advise that you contact one of the emergency centers shown below.
Westford Veterinary Emergency and Referral Center
11 Cornerstone Drive, Westford, MA 01886
Angell Animal Medical Center – Boston
350 South Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02130
Animal Medical Center Emergency & Referral of New England
168 Main Dunstable Road, Nashua, NH 03060
Bulger Veterinary Emergency Hospital
247 Chickering Road, North Andover, MA 01845
Massachusetts Veterinary Referral Hospital
20 Cabot Road, Woburn, MA 01801
Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University
200 Westboro Road, North Grafton, MA 01536
BluePearl Veterinary Partners
180 Bear Hill Road, Waltham, MA 02454
About Us:Unusual Veterinary Cases:Rooster with Frostbite
This rooster (shown at right) was brought in to Littleton Animal Hospital for evaluation due to severe depression, anorexia, and discoloration of the comb and wattle. These symptoms occurred after a period of extremely cold winter weather and high winds. The diagnosis was acute frostbite. The rooster was treated with IV fluids, pain medications, topical therapy of the comb and wattle, and syringe feeding. After a few days, the animal was released to its owners for further care. We have since heard that the rooster is very healthy and crowing loudly. It did have some permanent damage and loss of tissue as a result of the frostbite injury, however.
Our Services:Holistic Veterinary Care
At Littleton Animal Hospital, our veterinarians have experience in providing alternative and complementary approaches to traditional veterinary care. In addition to the highest quality traditional medicine, we offer the following holistic veterinary services:
- Veterinary Acupuncture — Many fine gauge needles are inserted at selected acupuncture points, stimulating these points and thereby activating the body's natural healing abilities.
- Herbal Therapies — Individual herbs or Chinese herbal formulas are used for therapeutic value.
- Nutritional Treatments for Pets — The easiest factor to influence in the health of your pet is its diet. We will evaluate your pet's needs and make specific recommendations regarding proper nutrition.
Using Holistic & Alternative Therapies, we can treat a variety of common conditions in pets including:
- Difficult Dermatology Cases
- Gastrointestinal Disease
- Neurological Disorders
Please call us at (978) 486-3101 for more information or to schedule a consultation.
What Is Integrative Veterinary Medicine?
We integrate traditional, alternative, and holistic medicine for the best possible treatment for your pet. The goal is to use any and all treatment options available — either traditional, holistic, or a combination of both — to find the most effective treatment for your pet's current condition.
Find out more about Integrative Veterinary Medicine.
PBS did a spotlight feature on Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (TCVM). To better understand Integrative Veterinary Medicine, watch the PBS video below:
Veterinary Acupuncture for Pets
Dr. Papscoe is certified in veterinary acupuncture through the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society. Acupuncture has many clinical applications and can be used alone or in conjunction with conventional medicine to treat many conditions. Some of the more commonly treated problems are: arthritis, hip dysplasia, cancer, seizures, intervertebral disc disease, and muscle injuries. Acupuncture is also a good way to strengthen the immune system and stimulate appetite. Please call if you would like any information on acupuncture or if you wish to schedule an initial assessment appointment.
Our Services:Pharmacy and Products
Littleton Animal Hospital maintains a complete inventory of both prescription and over the counter products to keep your pet happy and healthy. Our in-house pharmacy is stocked with prescription medications to provide preventive care, treat illnesses and ensure that your pet’s medication is always available. Other products available include vitamins, shampoos, and heartworm preventatives. We also sell products for birds, pocket pets and exotic animals.
Our Services:Laser Therapy for Pets
Littleton Animal Hospital offers the latest technology in health care for your pet — therapeutic laser therapy. Our therapy laser provides a deep-penetrating light that allows relief of pain by releasing endorphins and stimulation cells to heal faster. Your pet will relax and enjoy the pain-free treatments.
What is Veterinary Laser Therapy?
Laser therapy is a surgery-free, drug-free, non-invasive treatment to relieve pain. It accelerates the body's natural healing process. Laser therapy is effective in treating chronic conditions, acute conditions, and post-surgical pain and inflammation in pets. Whether your pet is rehabilitating from trauma or injury, healing from wounds or simply aging, laser therapy has been shown to provide relief and speed healing.
What Conditions Can Veterinary Laser Therapy Treat?
|Chronic and acute conditions that respond to laser therapy treatments include:|
If you think that your pet would benefit from laser therapy call us at (978) 486-3101 to schedule a consultation to find out how laser therapy can help your dog or cat.
Littleton Animal Hospital offers boarding for cats, reptiles and exotic pets so that you can leave your pet in total comfort at our full service kennel.
At Littleton Animal Hospital, we try to make your pet's vacation a special occasion. We know the decision to board your pet can be an anxious time for you and your special friend. Our boarding facility provides a comfortable and relaxing home away from home for your pet when you need to be away on business, vacation or an emergency.
We pay special attention to assure your pet is safe and comfortable.
Boarding guests enjoy the following amenities:
We also offer peace of mind:
- Cats must be current on the following vaccines – Distemper (FVRCP) and Rabies Vaccine.
- All pets must be free from internal and external parasites.
- All pets must have had a full wellness exam with one of our veterinarians within the last 12 months to board.
Please fill out one of the below forms prior to your pet's next stay with us.
Feel free to fax your pet's vaccine history, along with your boarding form, to us at (978) 486-3101 prior to arrival. We look forward to your pet's vacation!
Annual veterinary care is crucial to keeping your pet happy and healthy. Click the icons below to learn more about what your veterinarian can do for your pet.
Exams check overall health and detect problems before they become severe or costly.
Vaccines protect against common and fatal diseases based on your pet's age and lifestyle.
|Nutrition ensures your pet gets the balanced diet it needs and maintains a healthy weight.||Spaying and neutering protects pets from serious health and behavioral problems.|
Care Guides for Pet Owners
Your pet's health also depends on you. Click on the icons below to learn more about what pet owners can do at home to keep their pets living a long, healthy life.
Pet Wellness:Pet Exams
Bringing your pets to the veterinarian for a physical exam every year is the smartest and easiest way to keep them healthy. Exams allow your veterinarian to detect any problems before they become severe or costly.
Your Veterinarian Will Check...
- muscular and skeletal health by feeling for healthy muscle mass and joint pain.
- neurologic system – it could indicate birth defects in younger pets, and cognitive issues in older pets.
- appropriate weight and lifestyle for your pet's age.
- lymph nodes – swollen nodes can indicate a wound, virus, infection or some other illness.
- vital signs (temperature, pulse and respiration) – an abnormal reading could indicate illness.
- skin and coat condition for growths, infection wounds and overall skin health.
Bring Your Pet to the Veterinarian Every Year for a Clean Bill of Health and Peace of MindYour pet can't tell us what's wrong. But routine physical exams can help your veterinarian detect any problems or diseases you might not have otherwise picked up on, including heart murmurs, tumors, enlarged organs, cataracts, ear infections, ear mites, dental and gum disease, skin issues and allergies.
Vaccines protect against common diseases that your pets may become exposed to.
Did You Know?
Vaccines have about a 95% success rate for preventing infections and fatal diseases.
Thank you for choosing Littleton Animal Hospital to care for your pet. Downloading and filling out a New Client Form prior to your first appointment will greatly assist us in adding you and your pet to our system. Please feel free to fax it to us at (978) 486-0987 or to bring it with you to your pet's first appointment. We will be happy to contact your previous veterinarian to obtain any necessary information or documentation regarding your pet's medical history.
We offer safe and comfy Pet Boarding for birds, cats and exotic pets. Please fill out one of the below forms prior to your pet's next stay with us.
Pet Wellness:Dental & Oral Care
Oral disease is the most frequently diagnosed health problem for pets. Without proper preventive or home care, plaque and tartar can build up, which may cause oral infections, bad breath, infected gum tissues (gingivitis) or even bone loss (periodontitis).
Did You Know?
It's not normal for your pet to have bad breath – it can be a sign of serious dental or gum issues.
Sixty percent of dental disease is hidden below the gum line, and can only be found with x-rays. Brush your pet's teeth regularly and check with your veterinarian about screenings, cleanings and products available to help keep those pearly whites clean.