An invitation to join the PreVet School and Tech Programs

To our dear interns,

Instead of calling the office, please contact me directly by texting my cell phone at 469-450-2833. Let me know if your parents also want to contact me directly. Forwarding this message to them might help move things along.

I will be one of your mentors which includes other doctors and the Veterinary Support staff . We have helped get seven of our interns and staff admitted to the vet schools at Texas A&M and Oklahoma State in recent years. You’re in the right place if you’re committed and will work hard.

We also hire interns instead of strangers, especially for summer jobs. Although there is no guarantee for anyone, we do prefer to hire from within. Four students out of nine were hired from the class of 2020 (PESH and Wylie) and from our UTD program. Others were recommended for hire to local vets.

It is the four year relationship that you can develop with staff that is most valuable. The mistake that many veterinary school applicants make is approaching us on their junior or senior year of college and expecting us to vouch for them. Starting out early and proving yourself consistently year after year is the key to success. Even if focus changes from veterinary school, we can still help guide you through admissions for advance studies or choosing a career towards financial independence.

The program will be a combination of online and in person training. Initially, actual time in the hospital will be limited. When virus cases subside and a vaccine comes out, we should have more hands on time. When the weather cools down, activities in the back yard will also increase where it’s safer out in the open. Historically, interns aimed for 300 hours of hands on training per year. Although that is impossible at the moment, we aim to retain the quality curriculum we have used for the last 20 years though these challenging times.

Call or text me now at 469-450-2833 to sign up and get a head start towards your future Veterinary Career.

You will have a complete training revolving around all the veterinary departments including:

  • Exam rooms
  • Vaccinations and preventive care
  • Treatment area
  • Emergency and critical care
  • Dentistry
  • Receptionist
  • Business systems
  • Supervision & management
  • Kennels and boarding
  • Grooming
  • Surgery
  • Radiology or X-rays
  • Ultrasound
  • Laser therapy

And among many other skills; maybe most importantly; you will learn professionalism with not only pets, but with people – the staff and the clients – which, because of people’s love and focus for animals, is sometimes the last thing on their minds. But there is no way around it. We need to work closely together for the sake of our patients.

Also, for students with prior vet tech training or if applicable, please review your CVT, TVMA, PISD, DISD syllabus because we follow their guidelines to match our system.

Welcome to the program. Please let me know if you want to sign up and we will get your paperwork started then give you a tour of our teaching hospital.


H. Carbonell DVM

Our Boarding Kennels are available as a better alternative to asking your neighbor for a favor!

Where should you keep your pets when the rest of the family is away? Sometimes boarding is the best option, but questions about vaccines and what to bring can seem overwhelming. Hopefully, this list of 5 pointers will help you know what to expect when boarding your furry friend with us.

  1. How early should I make a reservation?
    When making a reservation for boarding, we always encourage you to inform us of your travel dates as soon as you know. It is better to call ahead and not need a spot then to call in and be unable to board. We do not charge a penalty when canceling a reservation.

That being said, not every trip can be planned ahead, and some are wonderfully spontaneous day-of trips! We are still very happy to board your pet with us, even if you call the day you need to bring them in. Monday through Friday we are open from 7:30 am to 7:00 pm and on Saturdays, we are open from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm. We take boarding drop-offs throughout our business hours.

  1. What vaccines does my pet need in order to be boarded?
    Here at EPMPH, we do require that pets are current on the following vaccinations:

· For Canines:

o Rabies

o Bordetella


· For Felines:

o Rabies


While there are other vaccines that we recommend, such as the Leptospirosis and Feline Leukemia vaccines, we do not require them to board. These vaccines are all to ensure the health and well-being of all pets staying with us-including yours! If you notice that your pet is not up to date on vaccines at this time it is not a problem! Being a fully equipped medical facility we can update your pet’s vaccines and address any other concerns you may have while they are here for the boarding stay.

It isn’t vaccines, but we do require one more thing for boarding! We want to make sure that all pets staying with us are current on flea prevention. Especially in the summer heat, fleas can flourish in many environments. Again, never fear if you are not current on flea prevention as we offer it through our clinic while they are boarding.

  1. Does my pet get playtime while boarding?
    We take our borders out at least three times a day for potty breaks; we also offer a playtime option! We let the pets play in a way that works best for them. It can be with other pets or with technicians. For older pets, sometimes it’s just a little extra hands-on love throughout the day.
  2. Can you accommodate my pet with special medical needs?
    Definitely! Being a medical hospital we are able to cater to pets that are elderly, diabetic or any other special needs. Especially for new boarders and patients, we like to take the time to discuss with you the different needs of your pet so that we are able to care for them just as you would.
  3. What about weekends and holidays, who looks after my pets then?
    The only days where we are not here the entire day are Sundays and holidays. On Saturday evenings, considering that we close at 4:00 pm, we have a member of our staff come in around 5:00 pm to walk, feed, and medicate all pets. On days when we are not open staff comes in twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening to care for all the boarders here.

Here at East Plano Murphy Pet Hospital we offer boarding for kitties and doggies. Please do not hesitate to call or email our clinic with any questions.

We can’t wait to see you!

Requesting an appointment online can be done in a matter of minutes.

We can help you with vaccines, boarding, bathing, and more!

Complete the form from this website to get started.

A proud nation celebrates Independence Day once again!

July 2018 schedule – holiday hours:

We will be closed on July 4th only. We will open for business as usual on Monday the 3rd, and the rest of the week. Please call us at 972-516-0717 for any concerns or questions. Thank you all for your continued trust for the past 25 years! — Dr. Carbonell and Staff

Urinary Problems In Dogs and Cats

Cats will be discussed first because bladder problems are notoriously more common or alarming in this species, in my experience. There are at least two divided camps when it comes to dealing with urinary problems in cats. It is amazing how medical information today can totally contradict what we knew 10 years ago. How can there be a total turn around when not much has really changed? Bladder problem is called by many names when cats are involved:

FLUTD – feline lower urinary tract disease
FIC – feline interstitial cystitis
cystitis – inflammation of the bladder
UTI – urinary tract infection

Traditionally, urine testing is done and sometimes blood and crystals are seen. Radiographs might be taken to rule out bladder stones (uroliths). If found, stones are either dissolved using a prescription diet or taken out by surgery called a cystotomy. Not all types of stones are dissolvable by a diet. Calcium can’t dissolve while struvites (magnesium ammonium phosphate – MAP) might. Antibiotics might be indicated. Some vets will use steroids to relieve inflammation, therefore relieving pain. Diet modification is a mainstay. Recently, another school of thought has been gathering more and more followers. It is claimed that most bladder problems result from stress and other factors and not from primary infection. Environmental enrichment was becoming more important. Antibiotics were said to be not needed in many cases. The rationale behind the use of certain diet foods is being questioned, or to put it mildly: being re-evaluated. Behavior modification and the use of psychotropic drugs were being strongly advocated. The shift could be destabilizing but exciting at the same time. I have been devoting a great deal of time and energy to this new frontier because cats fascinate me. I have always wanted to help these silent and regal creatures feel better when distressed and have always tried to do so with a sense of urgency. When faced with a cat peeing outside the box, ask yourself immediately how you can make its life better starting right now. There are a lot of things you can do even before you re able to get to the vet.

Have to enough litter boxes. Remember this simple formula: number of cats + one = number of boxes needed in the house.
Place the box in light traffic of hidden areas.
What is exciting to dogs and us might be stressful to cats.
Window sills, perches, scratching post and other things enrich a cat’s life and helps prevent or reduce behavior problems.
Maintain your cat’s healthy eight. Obese pets are prone to UTI or cystitis. Excess weight can also aggravate arthritis in older cats making them unable to get into their box.

In dogs, symptoms are much readily recognizable if you routinely make them potty while on a leash. You might see straining, dribbling of urine, or urinating small amounts from place to place. Evidence of blood, mucus, or foul smell might also be apparent. All of these can be missed if you have backyard pets or a doggy door. The following are new developments for dogs as of this writing. HDSD – high dose short duration antibiotic therapy. Some clients might not be surprised at this because their MD might have given them one dose of antibiotic and that cleared up their UTI. Well, for most vets and majority of their clients, we are used to that fact that it took 7 to 14 days, at least, to manage an infection. Recent studies suggest that a three day, high dose regimen of enrofloxacin ( a quinolone just like ciprofloxacin), may be effective in resolving acute uncomplicated UTI. This will definitely not work against prostatitis. The advantages include less cost and increased efficacy due to better owner compliance. There is just a higher chance to miss a dose when doing the traditional two-week regimen.

Why not use generic cipro to save money? Because the “bioavailability” of this drug in dogs is a disappointingly low 40%. This means that it does not work well. Increasing the dose towards a theoretically effective level will result in higher cost and increase the risk for toxicity. Unfortunately, some cheaper, older and clinically proven drugs are not being routinely used anymore because of their side effects. Sulfa drugs have been around for a long time and costs less than most drugs but the tendency to cause dry eye and contributing to bladder crystals has made a lot of vets wary. Penicillins are ineffective in managing prostatitis.

Veterinarians now also have the option to do a urine culture inside the hospital instead of sending it out to the lab. This might result in lower cost in a more rapid turnaround time. X-rays might be needed to rule out bladder or kidney stones. Ultrasound is usually not indicated and it’s really not ideal for depicting problems of the urethra. Contrast radiography might be a better choice for detecting bladder and urethral problems. Please look up the details concerning these modalities if the technical side interests you. References abound on the Internet.

UTI can be caused by several factors including anatomic problems, metabolic disease, and functional deficiency. An example of an anatomic defect is that hidden vulva syndrome. Obese pets are very prone to this problem. Excess fat in a female dog’s private part will cause skin to in fold. This persistently moist area contributes to bacterial growth. The bugs growing there have a tendency to go up the urethra and infect the bladder. Episioplasty is a form of surgery that can correct this defect. Success rate is around 85%. Of course the more obvious long-term solution is for the pet to lose weight. But we are all aware of how hard that is. Metabolic diseases are things like diabetes and Cushing’s disease that makes life miserable. Functional problems result in a situation where to bladder cannot empty itself.

Pets’ Vital Signs & Normal Values

Vital Signs and Normal Values:

It is important to know what is normal so we can learn to recognize later on what is abnormal. Some general observations are mostly true. The smaller the pet, the faster the heart rate is. In the hospital, techs will usually perform TPR and take your pet’s weight even before you see the doctor. This routine is a good sign that your vet’s offices do not cut corners and the staff are highly trained and empowered. They are not replacing your vet but simply augmenting his capabilities.

TPR and their respective normal values are:

• Temperature for dogs: 100 to 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit; for cats: 100 to 102.

• Pulse or heart rate: large dogs: beats per minute; small dogs: ; cats: 100 to 140.

• Respiratory rate: 16 to 40 breaths per minute for dogs and cats.

Other things you can check at home are the gums. Pink and moist is what you want to see. Dry and tacky might mean dehydration or illness. Eyes should not be bloodshot or yellow. A dry nose, contrary to popular belief, might not mean a pet is ill. On the same note, a wet nose does not guarantee wellness.

Age Comparison

Seven years! We all grew up knowing that. Pretty close!

Choosing a Pet

Ask yourself these questions:

• What role does a pet play in your life?

• How much time do you have for your pet?

• What about cost overall?

• Pet personalities and matching that with yourself?

• How about your human family members? Their ages? Their attitudes?

Dog breeds and Cat breeds

What makes a breed special? Everyone has something to say about this. Let us not forget the specialness of the mixed breed pet. Call her a mutt; call him a Heinz; nobody enjoys “hybrid vigor” as much as these pets. This vitality comes from getting back what was removed by mankind from centuries of seeking perfection. However, mixed breed dogs can get sick too. And most of the time, these diseases can be those that afflict the breed most predominant in that pet. The Dingo of Australia or the Carolina Dogs of the USA might be the closest examples of the dog returning to its natural state. Give up the expectation of uniformity of looks and predictability of certain traits so that you can be happy with a mutt. “Mongrel” could be a derogatory term for someone of mixed origin or character but I feel nothing but pride for these wonderful pets.

Exotics and Pocket Pets

Special pets require special personalities. Walk into your local library or pet supply store and you will see books devoted to care of every little creature that crawl, slither, fly, or swim. The store might even have some free brochures that outline care from A to Z. When my daughter picked up some hermit crabs from Corpus Christie, the nice shop keeper spent much more time going through the instruction sheet than the sale. Some people like to keep pets that make your skin crawl. There is also the extreme enthusiast. They keep potentially dangerous predators. There has been plenty of speculation on why certain personalities seek the rush or find comfort in sitting at the fringe or beyond.

Choosing a Veterinarian (Part 2)

What Is Important To You?

Consider these factors:

Location. Clients drive far and wide to stay with the vet they like. But all things being equal, this might be the number one deciding factor for many owners when looking for a new vet. If new to the area, make a few trips from home to the vet’s parking lot and see if the traffic flow is acceptable to you. Do this even before you need their service and before you set up your first appointment. Compare this to the next nearest one and ask for a clinic tour from both. Again, you need to do this before making an official “office visit.”

Convenient hours. It will be nice to be able to come in before or after work, but staffing costs hospitals money too and so there is a price attached to those extended hours. Check out the hours on Saturdays to because that might be the only time of the week sometimes that you are free. Keep the emergency clinic’s phone number posted to your fridge “before” you end up needing it.

Cost. Try not to be cheap because it can actually be dangerous to your pet’s health. On the other hand, quality care does not need to be expensive. Opt for reasonable. Avoid comparing apples to oranges. Once procedure performed by one doctor might not be exactly the same when done by another. Consider the doctor’s skill level and number of years of experience. Look at the place’s amenities. Do you want to go to a more expensive free-standing facility or can you can good service from a vet at a shopping mall? Is your vet at a lease-hold facility charging a relatively higher fee than her neighbors anyway? If so, do you feel that it is still worth staying. List some good attributes and start making phone calls if you can’t find any compelling reasons to stay.

Range of services. The more they offer the better. Just as long as you see value. Many people enjoy the convenience of the one-stop service feature. As long as a place does not lose its “soul” or dos not seem to have grown too big for you that it has lost its personal touch, then everyone should be happy especially your pets. You might not need to run back and forth between your groomer and vet when a vaccine is not up to date. Do not compromise too much between quality and convenience.

Number of veterinarians. Some clients like to very personal relationship that results from having a solo practitioner. However, hospitals with a doctor-partner or multiple doctors can offer in-house and immediate second-opinions. A hospital with more than one doctor, and with good working relationships, will tend to minimize errors and elevate the level of medicine. “Two heads are better than one” only holds true when doctors have good rapport with each other. Solo practices tend to offer a more home-like atmosphere. If you are the kind of client that likes to bond with an individual provider who might be able to cater to your quirks and specific whims, then a small solo practice might suit you well. You will have to go to another hospital with an unfamiliar staff if your preferred provider is off on vacation and your pet needs emergency care. You can always visit another hospital in advance; before you need them. This will ensure that they will pass your test when an emergency situation arises and your solo doctor is not available. This strategy reduces stress in an already volatile situation.

Hospital versus clinic. What’s in a name? “Clinic” connotes being smaller and not full-service. But some older facilities called clinics have actually grown into huge state of the art hospitals but kept the old designation. My feeling is that you have to consider the other factors above and not just look at how the place was named. “Hospital” might also lead you into believing that they are open all hours. Most are not and will refer cases to the ER outside of regular business hours. They might a more extended range of hours and offer a wider range of services than a clinic but the name alone will not tell you this. Check out the website, call the receptionist and walk in without your pet first to investigate.

Choosing a Veterinarian (Part 1)

The Hospital Tour

This is one of the most mutually beneficial tools. The client gets the chance to survey a prospective hospital taking neither financial risk nor emotional investment. You come into the new place, observe, ask questions, gather information, thank them, and leave. You do not have to spend money on an office visit. You will not be forced to like nor dislike the doctor or her decision that day because you did not have to bring a pet with you yet. You can go home and decide whether you want to come back or not.

For the hospital management, the free tour is a wonderful marketing ploy to get you interested in a valuable service. They invest a little time literally “showing off.” At first contact with the staff member guiding her, the savvy client will need to be able to distinguish between a sales pitch and a sincere desire to serve. Most of the time, the facility and initial staff attitude are enough for someone to make a snap decision. This is a time where gut instinct and judging a book by its cover might be useful. If the receptionist is cranky, the place stinks and the dog in the waiting area just snapped at you while chasing a cat that just got loose, then even a third grader will know what to do (or more importantly, what not to do). How much does it really matter that the doctor there is nice if you have to run a gauntlet before getting to her. Unfortunately for her, the staff behavior (which is a direct product of attitude) reflects her management style.

There are few exceptions. Some small one-doctor clinics might be old and low tech but the perks, such as the very personal approach you might receive, far outweigh the lack of cosmetic appeal. Some busy places with long wait times and those who do not even schedule appointments anymore because you will have to wait anyway, deliver such high value that the whole town flock to them. Of course, this only goes so far. If your pet’s health and your sanity suffers due to excruciatingly painful wait times, then it might be wiser to choose a place with a comparable level of service without the wait

even if it means paying a little bit more. Just a little bit more and not more than that!

These are the parts of a typical veterinary clinic or hospital. Usually, this list is accurate enough to describe the general areas as you walk from front office to the back. Not all facilities have all the areas mentioned and some parts might be dual- or multi-purpose.

  • Reception area and lobby
  • Examination rooms
  • Laboratory
  • Treatment area
  • Kennels and recovery areas
  • Boarding area – definitely ask to see this if you are thinking of leaving your pet there for care while you are on vacation or during emergency situations when you have to take off on a short notice. The time to take a tour is when you don’t need boarding service yet.

It is if some areas are off limits during a tour. You might not be allowed to enter this area due to reason of safety, security, or privacy.

  • Break room
  • Business office
  • Doctor’s office
  • Isolation suite for contagious cases
  • Pharmacy
  • Radiography area (x-rays)
  • Surgery suite

These are special purpose areas that only a select number of facilities have:

  • Day care
  • Exclusive cat boarding area
  • Grooming
  • Rehabilitation area – equipped for such things as an underwater treadmill and other physical therapy devices.
  • Special procedures room for dentistry, ultrasonography, or endoscopy
  • Training area