WestVet’s new Animal Trauma Center serving families beginning Sunday, Dec. 5

The WestVet new trauma center is currently underway. We began the move of our specialty services on Thursday. Our (tireless) ER team has provided continuous services to our patients and their people throughout the transition.WestVet is at 5024 W. Chinden Blvd. in Garden City, Idaho

All services will be out of the new hospital early Sunday morning (December 4). The new trauma center is located adjacent to the long-standing facility. WestVet new hospital is open in Garden City - 24/7 Animal Emergency trauma centerYou will find us the corner of 50th/Chinden in Garden City, directly across the street from the Moxie Java bistro. The street address is 5024 W. Chinden Blvd., Garden City, ID  83714.

<iframe src="https://player.vimeo.com/video/194100427" width="640" height="360" frameborder="0" webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen allowfullscreen></iframe> <p><a href="https://vimeo.com/194100427">reception setup!</a> from <a href="https://vimeo.com/user16763492">WestVet Animal Emergency</a> on <a href="https://vimeo.com">Vimeo</a>.</p>

We will be holding a public open house and ribbon cutting after the holidays, in January. We will invite everyone to come enjoy a behind-the-scenes tour and refreshments with us. 

Thank you for your support during these busy, exciting times! 

WestVet is Idaho's only 24/7 ANimal Emergency and Trauma Center

Comment →

Dog Blood Donors save lives during Animal Emergencies

When Boise Canine Officer Jardo arrived at WestVet last week following a gunshot wound, many people from officers and veterinary staff quickly jumped in to save his life. Beyond the doctors, surgeons, technicians and assistants, two other heroes quietly stepped up – with donated blood.

Two WestVet staff member pets, WestVet provided Emergency Critical Care to save the life of Jardo, Boise k9 Officer who was shot“Myles” a six-year-old Golden Retriever, and “Cricket” a five-year-old Pitbull both donated blood that was used during the emergency surgery that saved Jardo’s life.

Dog blood donors provide lifesaving blood for dogs requiring surgery or other procedures. As a surgical center, we have a continuous need for canine blood supplies and as several WestVet employee pets meet the donor qualifications, they donate blood about every six weeks.

The entire procedure takes around thirty minutes. Before donating, potential donor dogs undergo rigorous medical testing to ensure diseases will not be transmitted to recipient dogs.

The donation process is similar to that used when humans giving blood. After a small area is shaved and disinfected, a topical pain medication is applied. As the blood is collected, technicians carefully monitor the volume to ensure the proper amount is obtained. 

Once the draw is complete, a bandage is adhered to the area.

Other than a small hairless patch, and a slight bruise, donor dogs exhibit no adverse responses to donating. WestVet provided critical care to a Boise Police K9 officer shot in the line of dutyIn fact, Cricket’s owner says she has not had any negative reaction to donating.

One reason that dog blood donors are so important is that canine blood only has a shelf life of 30 to 35 days; meaning the supply needs to be regularly replenished so it is readily available when needed.

Blood donor dogs must be:

  • ·         Healthy and Happy
  • ·         Greater than 50 lbs
  • ·         Between 1-7 yrs old
  • ·         Able to lay still for 10 minutes
  • ·         Committed to donate for at least 2 years

WestVet is proud to work with Canine Blood Heroes of Boise to serve animals throughout the Treasure Valley. Contact them to determine if your pet can be a donor.

Comment →

Cleft Palates in Pets

Dr. Kristin Walker, WestVet’s board certified veterinary dentist, has successfully treated  numerous cleft palate deformities; she has details about how it can affect a pet’s health and general treatment options in today’s veterinary blog.

A cleft palate is a birth defect, often diagnosed in very young puppies, that creates an opening between the mouth (oral cavity) and nose (nasal cavity). Treating a cleft palate in pets with a board certified veterinary dentistThe cleft palate may affect the lips, hard palate, soft palate or a combination of those locations. The opening can prevent puppies from properly nursing and allow for food and fluids to enter the nasal cavity and airway, potentially leading to serious complications.

Brachycephalic breeds (dogs with short noses such as Pugs, Pekinese or French Bulldogs) are most commonly affected by cleft palates. While purebred dogs and cats have a higher incidence, the malformation can be possible in any puppy or kitten.

Symptoms of a cleft palate can vary depending on the age of the puppy, but can include:

  • Difficulty nursingDr. Kristin Walker is a board certified veterinary dentist who treats pets born with a cleft palate
  • Stunted growth/failure to thrive
  • Runny nose
  • Coughing/gagging
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Pneumonia due to food aspiration

Your family veterinarian can diagnosis a cleft palate through a visual examination. Young puppies often require dedicated care and tube/hand feedings until old enough for surgery (usually 4-5 months of age) to repair it. Treatment varies depending on the severity of the defect but typically involves creating tissue flaps within the mouth that are sutured over the defect. Surgery is best performed by a veterinarian with advanced training in oral surgery, such as a board certified dentist or surgeon.


If you have any concerns about your pet’s dental health, whether or not you suspect a cleft palate, it is always appropriate to consult with your family veterinarian right away. If your veterinarian is unavailable, WestVet is open and able to address your concerns 24 hours a day. 

Comment →

Dr. Katy Campbell joins WestVet surgical team

In 2012 Dr. Katy Campbell completed a one-year internship at WestVet; our team of doctors and specialists were delighted when she agreed to join our animal surgical center permanently.

WestVet is pleased to announce that Dr. Campbell joined our team in September, following her three-year surgical residency.Dr. Katy Campbell, Diplomate candidate american college of veterinary surgical services Her educational achievements include undergraduate work at George Fox University in Newberg, OR (2004 -2008) and her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from Oregon State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 2012. 

Just prior to graduation from vet school, she was selected from a highly competitive applicant pool for a one-year Rotating Small animal Internship (2012-13) at our specialty hospital. While working at WestVet she exhibited a professional demeanor, affinity for surgical services, and warm and communicative interaction with clients and our entire team.

2013-2016 brought Dr. Campbell to Pennsylvania where she completed a three-year surgical residency at the Pittsburgh Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Center. Her research paper, accepted for publication in the Journal of Veterinary Surgery, is entitled “Outcome of Tibial Closing Wedge Osteotomy in 55 Cranial Cruciate Ligament-Deficient Stifles of Small Dogs.” Up next, as a Diplomate candidate, Dr. Campbell must successfully pass board examinations in the area of veterinary specialty, something slated for spring of 2017.

Veterinary Specialty Care. 

When specialized veterinary expertise is required, your family veterinarian may refer you to a specialist. Our specialists serve as a valuable resource in providing advanced medicine and care as he/she collaborate with your family veterinarian on specific treatments.

The letters following a specialists’ name indicate their area of focus beyond veterinary school and the specialty college. For example, "DACVS" stands for Diplomate American College of Veterinary Surgeons. It is listed after the name of a board certified veterinary surgeon who has met all of the requirements. 

WestVet is pleased to offer the services of 18 veterinary specialists who provide 11 specialty disciplines that are recognized by the American Veterinary of Medical Association. Dr. Campbell joins three other board certified veterinary surgeons and our highly-skilled technicians and support staff at WestVet.

Dr. Campbell has received numerous honors throughout her educational pursuits, both in the classroom and on the basketball court, you may read her full bio HERE. Dr. Katy Campbell joins WestVet Surgical Center

She and her fiancé Justin, and their active Labrador Retriever “Bear” are all outdoor enthusiasts. When she’s not working, you may find the three of them enjoying the many recreational activities that the Treasure Valley has to offer.


We were delighted when she agreed to return to join our WestVet surgical team. Dr. Campbell is seeing patients four days a week.

Comment →

Disaster Preparedness for your family and pets; tips from ER Vet Kara Lindberg

September is designated National Disaster Preparedness Month as a reminder of the unexpected events that disrupt our lives and home; in today’s veterinary blog we are sharing a few ideas on ensuring your pets are also prepared for an emergency.  

September, National Preparedness Month, focuses on family preparations for emergencies or disasters for the region or community where we live and work. Whether natural disasters such as tornadoes, wildfires, earthquakes, or man-made calamities, entire regions can be affected for weeks. It’s always wise to have emergency plans in place for your family – and to include your pets in those plans.

Dr. Kara Lindberg, WestVet Emergency Veterinarian, shared some thoughts on emergency pet preparations below:

  1. Microchip/Current ID. Ensure your pet has a registered (and updated) microchip. Preparing your pet for an emergency - Tips from WestVet Animal ER HospitalWhen pets get separated from their people, whether during an emergency or an unexpected escape through an open fence, this critical tool can help your friend return home.  
  2. Information file or folder for each pet. This easy-to-grab folder can include a pet’s health information and medical history, vaccination records, an updated photo and your family veterinarian’s contact information.
  3. Emergency pet kit. If a natural disaster requires that your family must evacuate your home, grab pet supplies and store them in a crate/kennel to take along. Consider things that your pets needs, such as a food and water bowl, food and current medication supplies for several days, a leash, waste disposal bags, and comfort items (a favorite toy or blanket).
  4. A designated caregiver in your absence. If you are traveling and unreachable whether during an unexpected calamity or for an extended vacation, a designated caregiver can play an important role in your pet receiving lifesaving veterinary care. Before leaving, designate your chosen representative through a simple notarized statement authorizing him/her to make important decisions for your pet in the case of a large disaster or a smaller veterinary emergency that requires medical care.
  5. Explore resources and ideas.The website Ready.Gov and the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)  offer a wealth of information on preparations for all the people and pets in your care in the event of an emergency.  


If your family veterinarian is unavailable, the WestVet Emergency Veterinary Hospital is always open and able to help your pet 24 hours a day. In emergency situations, no appointment is necessary, just come directly to our hospital. 208.375.1600

Comment →