At West Ballantyne Animal Hospital, we’re committed to providing you with the very best pet care available. Part of that responsibility means making sure our clients fully understand the nature of the work we do, and the treatments that we use to help your cherished pet. At our animal clinic, we encourage you to ask as many questions as you need to make informed decisions about the pet care we provide. To that end, our veterinarian Tom Linfante, DVM has taken the time to address some of his most frequently asked questions right here on our website. The questions range from general inquiries about the programs and policies associated with our Charlotte area animal clinic to specific questions related to the health of your pet. If you don’t see an answer for your question below, contact us and submit it to our veterinarian today. The pet care experts at West Ballantyne Animal Hospital are waiting to hear from you!

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Share the Care Program
    Tell your friends about your good experiences at West Ballantyne Animal Hospital. Give them a Share the Care card. When they become clients, you and your friend will receive a $20.00 professional service credit!
  • Admission Policy
    All pets admitted to the hospital for surgery, dentistry, boarding, or bathing must be up to date with their annual preventative care exams and vaccinations. If this service was provided by another hospital, proof of vaccination will be requested at the time of booking. If you do not have the vaccination certificate, we will be happy to call the clinic where the service was provided on your behalf. This policy is important for the safety and well-being of both your own pet and others in the hospital.
  • Cancellation Policy
    Please notify us if you are unable to keep your appointment. We do accept same day cancellations.
    However, we would really appreciate notification of cancellations as soon as possible. We cannot guarantee an appointment with the doctor if you are late. However, we will do our best to find you another appointment time that is mutually convenient.
  • Payment Policy
    We accept cash, and all major credit cards including Visa, MasterCard and debit cards as forms of payment for services. We also accept Care Credit. Payment for services rendered is due after each appointment or when the pet is discharged from the hospital.
    If you have any additional questions or need further assistance, please call our office to talk with one of our staff members – we are happy to help!
  • How do I know if my pet is in pain?
    It can sometimes be difficult to tell. If you suspect your dog or cat may be hurting, or is just not acting right, call us to have us examine your pet.  Some signs of pain are more obvious, such as limping, but some signs are more subtle and can include:  not eating, a change in behavior or normal habits, being more tired and having less energy.  Of course, these symptoms can also be caused by many problems, so early observation and action is important.
  • When is the best time to spay or neuter my pet? 
    The best time to spay or neuter your dog or cat is approximately five to six months of age.  However, the procedure can be done at most ages. It is important that female dogs and cats get spayed before their first heat cycle.
  • How many months should my pet be on heartworm prevention medication?
    Heartworm disease is a serious disease transmitted by infected mosquitoes and lead to congestive heart failure and death if left untreated. We recommend all dogs be given year round heartworm prevention, regardless of lifestyle.
    A simple blood test is needed to check your dog for heartworm disease on an annual basis. Heartworm prevention is given on a monthly basis by a chewable tablet or topical application. Depending on the specific product you and your veterinarian choose, heartworm prevention medication can prevent other parasite infestations including internal parasites (intestinal parasites) and external parasites (fleas and ticks).
  • Why does my pet need a dental cleaning and how often should this be done?
    The teeth and mouth are one of the first things our veterinarian checks during your pet’s physical exam. We may notice that your pet has some tartar buildup or lesions on the teeth or mouth. A dental cleaning includes a complete mouth examination, tooth root planning, tooth scaling and polishing to treat and maintain your dog and cat’s healthy teeth and gums. As your pet ages, advanced dental care may be required. It is important that the teeth are checked on a regular basis and cleanings are performed regularly so keep up with dental disease and keep the mouth healthy.
  • Do I need to brush my pet’s teeth at home?
    Yes. Proper dental care at home is highly recommended to help maintain the oral health of your dog and cat. Home dental care for your pet should start early, even before their adult teeth come in. It is best if owners brush their dog’s and cat’s teeth frequently. In order to be effective the teeth need to be brushed multiple times a week. Although tooth brushing is the best method of preventing plaque, calculus, and bacterial build-up, there are many options for dental home care. Other oral home care options such as dental formulated foods, rinses, water additives, and dental treats should be considered.