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June 25, 2015
How You and Your Pets Can Beat The Heat
As the start of summer approaches, many are taking precautions when it comes to staying safe in the southern heat. Follow the link below to watch Dr. Gregg's interview for WLTX's story about safety for you and your pets in the summer heat! 

April 17, 2015
Many pet owners around Columbia are concerned about the recent canine flu outbreak in the Midwest.  Loren Thomas from WLTX recently interviewed our very own Dr. Gregg for advice.  Please follow the link below to watch the interview.

      Congratulations to Dr. Gregg for passing his board re-certification exams as a canine and feline Diplomate!

   What does this mean? “The American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (ABVP) certifies veterinary practitioners with exceptional k...nowledge, skill, and competency in the care of the total patient. The ABVP board certified veterinarian has demonstrated they are capable of providing a level of clinical practice that is clearly superior to the norm of the profession. The certification process is demanding and requires a thorough mastery of species-oriented practice.” (ABVP website)
   It means he is one of about 900 veterinarians in the United States and abroad that have earned the Diplomate title from the ABVP, and one of only three canine and feline Diplomates in South Carolina! He made a choice to undergo a long and difficult process of additional studies and examination to become a board certified specialist recognized by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). This process takes a minimum of three years to complete and the motivation behind it is, very simply, excellence.
   How does this affect you? You can rest easy knowing your animals are receiving expert treatment because Dr. Gregg and his staff have a strong commitment to providing the best possible care.
   More information about the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners can be found at (information and quotes were obtained from the ABVP website)
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5 Common Flea Myths Debunked

1.        “My pet never goes outside so they don’t need a flea preventative.”

Fleas can act as temporary “hitchhikers” on clothing and shoes, gaining access to our homes.  Once fleas are inside and have access to a host, the flea life cycle starts.  Even indoor only cats are at risk for flea infestation.  While fleas prefer animals as a host, they will bite and feed off of humans if hungry.

2.        “My pet has never had fleas so he does not need a preventative.”

Flea preventatives are designed to do just that: prevent initiation or continuation of the flea life cycle.  Effective monthly flea prevention ensures that your pet is not at risk for the diseases fleas cause and the frustration of eradicating a flea problem in the home.  It is much better and easier to prevent the problem than to deal with it once it happens.

3.        “My pet only needs a flea preventative in the warm months.”

In the warm, humid months we see a rise in flea populations but fleas can survive quite well indoors in the cooler months.  Unseasonal temperatures in the cooler months can result in a boom in flea population, posing a year-round threat from fleas.

4.        “Why get my pet’s flea preventative from you?  The product I buy over the counter is cheaper and just as effective.”

Many over the counter products are ineffective at best, and can actually be harmful to your pet.  If your pet develops a health concern due to the over the counter product, you are left holding the bag for treatment.  Prescription flea preventatives obtained from your veterinarian come with the peace of mind that, if a problem arises, the manufacturer will stand behind their product if medical care is needed.  Any financial benefits to purchasing flea preventatives over the counter are negated with the cost of treating the effects of a flea problem when the product is ineffective.  Furthermore, manufacturers often provide rebates for consumers who buy product directly from a veterinarian making the cost of the product less than many over the counter products!

5.        “I spray my yard, so my pet can’t get fleas.”

While environmental control is an important part of any flea prevention and eradication strategy, the pet has to be removed as host in the flea life cycle.  If a flea can’t feed on your pet, it can’t reproduce and keep the cycle going.  The only way to effectively do this is to adopt an effective monthly flea prevention plan. 


“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”  Ask us about starting an effective monthly flea preventative today.





Walter B Gregg Jr., DVM, DABVP

Preventative medicine has been greatly improved over the years with the utilization of vaccines. I remember listening to my dad describe infectious canine hepatitis that led to the death of his bird dog many years ago. Back in the early 1980’s, when I began practicing veterinary medicine, it was during the devastating parvovirus enteritis epidemic.  I also saw just about every possible disease associated with feline leukemia virus. These are horrible disease processes that have fortunately been essentially eradicated in vaccinates. We have come a long way and I am grateful for some of the vaccines we now have.  However, some vaccines currently available are ineffective and totally unnecessary. Furthermore, excellent studies are available that demonstrate multiple vaccines given at a single visit can induce reactions, especially in small dogs. The dogma of mindless annual vaccination is the subject of the remainder of this article.

We have been able to give 3 year rabies vaccines in South Carolina since November of 1992. Considerable published evidence that our core vaccines (defined later- read on) provided a duration of immunity lasting longer than one year began emerging in the early 2000’s.  Now immunity in excess of 3 years is documented for all core vaccines (1). Our practice began administering 3 year rabies in January 1993 and we moved to a 3 year core vaccine protocol in 2004. I have seen no cases in which a vaccinate acquired a disease as a result of this 3 year interval. This information is available in the vaccine guidelines published by the American Animal Hospital Association (dogs)(2) and The American Association of Feline Practitioners (cats)(3). Additionally, see the journal abstract pasted below. (1)

Next, let’s talk about core and non core vaccinations. Core vaccines are recommended for every animal regardless of their risk profile. Non core vaccinations are recommended on an individual basis and are recommended only if risk profiles and exposure indicate a need. For dogs, distemper, adenovirus type 2 (hepatitis) and parvovirus combined in one vaccine and rabies are the only core vaccines. For cats, panleukopenia (distemper or parvovirus), rhinotracheitis (feline herpes virus), and calici virus combined in one vaccine and rabies are the only core vaccines. Because aluminum adjuvants have been incriminated in feline sarcomas we administer a non adjuvated rabies vaccine to cats.  This non adjuvated vaccine is only available as a 1 year vaccine because of federal laws.  Additionally, most experts recommend a core series of two FELV (feline leukemia virus) vaccines given to kittens with a booster given at 1 year of age. After this initial series, FELV vaccination then becomes a non core vaccine, given only if exposure warrants vaccination.

It remains an enigma to me as to why any progressive veterinary practice or mobile vaccine clinic would still be giving annual vaccinations and non core vaccinations without regard to risk profiles. Questions on this subject are welcome.

Gregg Animal Hospital
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