What We Offer

Preventative Medicine

“Prevention is the best cure” applies especially well in veterinary medicine. We look at prevention in a much broader sense than just vaccinations, and actually focus most on diet, socialization, training, environment and exercise.




While we do use vaccines in our practice, we also encourage pet guardians to consider homeopathic nosodes, and we follow the more current guidelines of vaccinating our younger patients, then minimizing vaccinations as our patient’s age. We strongly encourage running a blood titer to evaluate a dog or cat’s existing antibodies to the diseases we might be considering for vaccination, and strive to eliminate unnecessary vaccinations entirely.




We believe that an appropriate diet is the cornerstone to good health. We offer a number of diet options for our patients, realizing that there is no one perfect diet for everyone (click here to visit our products page). Our preference is for raw food diets, and we provide a number of written articles, links, and brochures discussing the concepts.


1) Switching Foods


2) Great Cat Sites to explore:


Cat Info – excellent articles on diet, raw foods etc.



Feline Diabetes – site for diabetic cat “support” and information.



Little Big Cat – articles on how to convert to a raw food diet, inflammatory bowel disease, etc.



Dogtor J – Food Intolerance in Pets and Their People



We also have a great library of books on diet to explore, as well as a number of books that can be checked out from our lending library.


On our Links page, you will find a number of links to other diet/nutrition sites which may be of interest to you.


Doctor’s note:


We see many health problems related to allergies and find that food allergies are a common occurrence. Taking a hard look at our patients’ diets and exploring hypo-allergenic options can make an incredible difference in some patients. 


There is also a growing body of evidence supporting the role of carbohydrates and processed foods in the formation of inflammatory responses in the body.  We find that many conditions in our patients (arthritis, kidney disease, bladder irritations, heart disease, etc.) improve with a more restricted carbohydrate, fresher diet.  As we see the studies and the results in our patients, it stimulates us to eat healthier too!


Annual Exams


Wellness exams are the backbone of our practice. We believe that every patient should be examined at least once a year. Time is set aside to discuss diet, behavior & habits, environment, and physical concerns. We look at this as an opportunity to get to know our patients better as well as a chance to stimulate their human companions into evaluating what is and isn’t working in their relationship. It might include everything from acknowledging and taking responsibility for an obesity problem to defining new ways of interacting with a pet to overcome a behavior problem, to designing a supplement regime for the alleviation of a skin problem. We discuss travel plans and what might be necessary to assure a safe and enjoyable trip for all, and make recommendations as necessary for outside services such as grooming, house-sitting and training. Our fees are based on the time spent with a patient and client, ranging from a routine (approximately 20 min) to an extended (approximately 40 min) to an extended II visit (approximately 60 min.) If there has not been enough time allotted to cover all concerns, a return visit may be scheduled. While we often examine multiple members of an animal household during one visit, it takes great concentration on both the doctor’s and the client’s parts to ensure that each animal is thoroughly examined and discussed as necessary.


Radiology Services


Morningstar provides complete radiographic services. We use x-rays as an aid in diagnosing everything from bowel blockages to bladder stones, broken bones to dislocations and arthritis, pneumonia to heart enlargement, pregnancy to tumors.


Radiographs take the full use of our treatment room and at least two technicians, so we strive to schedule them appropriately. The ideal time for radiographs is Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday mornings by appointment.


There are some positions that must be taken under sedation, so if we are planning on taking x-rays, we ask that our patients be fasted. There are also some procedures that require preparation before the x-rays such as enemas or catheterization. Please ask at the time the appointment is made to learn what might be indicated for your companion.


Case in Point: Casey C. was a young, exuberant Labrador who suddenly became unable to hold down food or water, despite an interest in both. Her human companions were convinced that she had not been able to scavenge anything, nor were they aware that she had been fed anything out of the ordinary. Medical management did nothing to calm her stomach. Lab work indicated that her kidneys were stressed, and yet fluid therapy did not relieve her symptoms. Radiographs of her abdomen showed that she had swallowed a large rock, which was too big to pass out of her stomach. With a radiographic confirmation of the foreign body, we were able to open her stomach and remove the rock. She made a speedy and uneventful recovery.


Surgical Procedures


Morningstar is equipped to provide all routine surgical procedures. Neutering and trauma repair are common procedures, as are tumor removals, abdominal exploratories, bladder stone removal etc.


We also employ the services of a local specialty surgeon, Dr. Steven Gentry, to perform some of the more involved surgeries such as pinning and plating broken bones, cruciate ligament repairs, joint surgeries and open chest procedures.


Surgeries and procedures requiring anesthesia are scheduled every Tuesday morning, and either Wednesday and Friday morning, by appointment. Surgeries with Dr. Gentry may, on occasion, be scheduled on alternate days or times.


Emergency Services


Morningstar employs an answering service and phone paging system to provide our clients with 24 hour coverage, seven days a week. There are occasions, however, when the doctor on call may be involved in a prior emergency or a personal commitment which will result in a short delay in responding to a call. Every effort is made to speak with callers and respond to emergencies in a timely fashion.


We take this commitment seriously, and appreciate our clients’ sensitivity in not placing unnecessary calls after hours. We are available for questions about post-op care, medications, strange new symptoms etc. We would much rather clear up a question after hours than have a situation blow up or make our patients suffer needlessly by waiting till normal office hours. Please let us know if you feel that this has not been the case. Quality control is important to us, whether it applies to our answering service, our paging system, our doctors, or our staff.


Exotic Pets


Morningstar sees a wide range of “exotic” patients. We see many birds on a regular basis, as well as reptiles, a very occasional amphibian, rabbits, ferrets, and “pocket pets” such as hamsters, gerbils and guinea pigs. As in our dog and cat patients, our focus is on good nutrition and preventative care. We encourage people to research extensively before committing to exotics, being aware of nutrition as well as the physical and emotional care needed for the species and individual under consideration.


We’ve prepared three documents to give you some useful information about choosing and living with exotic pets:

1) overview-of-exotic-pets

2) living-with-exotic-pets

3) feathered-friends



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