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April, 2021

Focus of the Month

A heartworm infection is very dangerous to your dog’s health. The life cycle of a heartworm must go from mosquito to dog to mature, and then get passed to the mosquito again. Unless you can prevent your dog from being bitten by mosquitoes, they are at risk of contracting heartworm. 
Preventative medication is given once per month from June to November and stops the maturation of worms. If your dog tests positive for heartworm, the treatment is quite expensive. Depending on the severity, they may require surgery to extract the worms from the heart. 

Many dogs show no symptoms depending on their lifestyle and extent of the infection. Dogs that are active and have a more severe infection will cough and become intolerant of exercise. Symptoms range from weight loss and fainting to coughing up blood and congestive heart failure. They can also become carriers and infect other dogs through an infected mosquito. 

We test for heartworm by using a snap test, which uses an antigen to detect the presence of heartworm in the animal’s system. We draw and test a blood sample which takes about 10-15 minutes, and if positive, we inspect a blood smear to find the microfilaria (immature worms) in the blood stream. We may also take radiographs to see if there are changes to the heart to determine how severe the infection is. 

The most effective heartworm treatment is quite expensive. The animal must remain inactive and be monitored regularly by veterinary staff throughout the treatment. We start by administering a preventative to keep the microfilaria in the bloodstream from reaching mosquitoes, and then will go in with a more invasive treatment.

Veterinarians will do two or three rounds of treatment depending on how severe the infection is. The reason a dog must be kept sedentary is because dead worms must work their way out of the system. If a dog is too active the worms can move to the lungs and cause breathing issues leading to death. 
After treatment is complete and all the worms are expelled, they should be able to test negative on the snap test and carry on with the preventative. 

Heartworm infection can be prevented by keeping your dog on prevention during the mosquito season. Many products work backwards and can catch any infection possibly missed. 
At our clinic we carry Heartgard but if your pet needs, or has been on a different preventative, we can order it in. We require a heartworm test done every other year in order to prescribe you the preventative. 

Fun Fact: A cat’s immune system usually kills off the worms that cause heartworm, therefor it is rare in cats (1-5% in areas where dogs are highly infected). That said, it can still occur and if it does, may be more life threatening due to their smaller size. 

We do not regularly test cats because often if they do have heartworm, they may only have a small number of males whose antigen won’t show up on the snap test. Only the antigen females give off is detectable by the snap test and it is only given off 7-8 months after infection. 

There are some preventatives for cats - we use Advantage Multi and Revolution which are also used for routine deworming.

HEARTGARD® Plus (ivermectin/pyrantel) prevents the threat of heartworm disease and treats and controls five species of intestinal worms.

Clinic News

8:00 AM - 6:00 PM SUNDAY
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM MONDAY
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM TUESDAY
8:00 AM - 8:00 PM WEDNESDAY 
8:00 AM - 8:00 PM THURSDAY

8:00 AM - 6:00 PM FRIDAY
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM SATURDAY
Job Opportunity: DVM

Are you ready for a change for the better? Are you looking for a full-service clinic with loyal clientele? Are you looking for coaching and mentoring to help take your skills to the next level?  If this sounds like you then we might have a great opportunity for you.
Gimli Veterinary Services is a small animal practice just 45-minutes North of Winnipeg. Dr. Taylor opened the practice in June of 1996. Our goal is to create the best practice we can by providing gold standard service, educating, and guiding our clients to decide the best outcome for their animals. Our team members are locally involved to support our communities. We provide training and education to our staff so we can have a safe, fun work environment. We live by this and our business is growing!
As our ideal candidate, you have:
  • A valid DVM License
  • Strong sense of judgement including low stress handling techniques
  • Superb time management with schedule flexibility
  • Optimistic attitude and future focused, willingness to grow
We offer:
  • Health benefits
  • Paid dues and CE
  • Fear Free Certification
  • Excellent support team
  • Uniforms, footwear allowance
  • Paid vacation days
Our Veterinarians and staff are passionate about veterinary medicine, continuous learning, and client service – and we are on the look out for those attributes in all our candidates. We have full-time and part-time Associate DVM positions available.

Please send your resume with cover letter and why you became a Veterinarian to We look forward to hearing from you! 
GVS Staff and What We Do

Ever wonder what each team member at our clinic actually does? This month we are answering that questions for you.

When you enter our practice you will see the smiling face of one of our receptionists. The receptionists record patient weight and direct the patient and client to the exam room. If you call, you will hear their friendly voices over the phone as they assist your needs. These ladies open and close our office, answer phones, take excellent care of our appointment scheduling and process payments. Receptionists also remind clients of upcoming appointments via phone call the day prior to your appointment. They perform office duties such as filing, faxing, and photocopying. 

When you call in a prescription or have one faxed from another clinic, our receptionists will fill prescriptions as per the veterinarian. They order, receive and stock inventory and supplies needed for the clinic. These ladies do a wonderful job of keeping things running smoothly! 

Hospital Assistants
Our hospital assistants are our most important people! They often help with reception duties as needed and ensure the exam rooms are stocked with the supplies veterinarians need during appointments. 
Hospital assistant Alysha taking air bubbles out of IV lines in preparation for surgery.
Hospital assistants step in when the RVTs or veterinarians need a holder while performing blood draws, catheter insertions, nail trims, administering vaccines and many other procedures. They are also responsible for performing all daily, weekly and monthly hospital sanitation duties. We require these ladies to be “Jills of all trades” and at GVS, they learn everything they need to know on the job. Hospital assistants are very hard-working and relied on for many things – they truly are the glue that holds the practice together.

Registered Veterinary Technicians (RVTs)
RVTs have completed a two-year post-secondary program and know their stuff! They are trained to do everything the veterinarians do except do not prescribe, diagnose or perform surgery. RVTs perform dental cleanings, prep animals for surgery and monitor anesthetic while your pet is in surgery. They also pull blood, insert catheters, trim nails, and express anal glands. RVTs give treatments, calculate and administer medications / drugs, and know how to position your pet for x-rays and procedures. They are extensively trained and love what they do; in turn, we love what they do. Their job is emotionally and physically challenging, but they continue to work hard to help keep their patients healthy. 

Reckless having his heart listened to by RVT Calida (right) after a heartworm test. Hospital assistant Brooklyn (left).
Our veterinarians are there in the exam room to examine your pet to ensure they are healthy, and when they are not, do bloodwork or imaging to let the pet’s body tell them why they’re sick. They perform surgeries, prescribe medication and diagnose illness or disease in your pet. Veterinarians see your pets when they are puppies/kittens up until their final days and strive to see that your pet lives their healthiest and best quality life.
Copyright © 2021 Gimli Veterinary Services, All rights reserved.

Our address is:
70 Centre Street, Gimli Manitoba CANADA R0C1B0

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Gimli Veterinary Services · 70 Centre Street · PO BOX 1725 · Gimli, MB R0C 1B0 · Canada

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