About DrHayes

I have wanted to be a veterinarian my whole life. In fact I cannot imagine doing anything else. Having started practice in 1987, I have found my love for dogs and cats has only deepened. This human-animal bond helps me stay centered both professionally and personally. Whitney Veterinary Hospital, established by Dr Robert Whitney in 1971, has been my home for my whole career. Our foundation is simple: provide the highest, most current care to our patients as if they were our own pets and treat each client as family. On a personal note, I enjoy many pet related hobbies such as dog training and showing in venues such as conformation, obedience and agility. I have dabbled in hunt in the past, but time generally limits me to these other things. I also enjoy quilting, ALOT! So when not playing with my dogs, I am generally either quilting or reading.

Join Us for the Whitney’s Howliday Open House

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I hope November is treating you well. It’s hard to believe it is here already and we are heading quickly towards the Holidays!

It is also hard to believe we have been in our new home for just over 4 months. Time has really flown by! Since we haven’t officially had an open house and folks are asking for a tour, we thought it would be fun to invite you to a Howliday Open House! A few of the details follow!

  • Saturday November 21st, 2015
  • Noon to 2pm
  • Pictures of your pets with Santa!
  • Special pet friendly treats
  • Special people friendly treats
  • Raffle drawing for prizes
  • Tour our brand new facility and visit with our staff

Puppy and kittenWe hope you will join us at 2627 N Knoxville (our new location)!  If you have any questions, be sure to call us at 309-685-4707!  We will be happy to help!

See you soon,

Dr Nancy

The Halloween Survival Guide for Pets

Hi all,
I cannot believe it is already the end of October. This year has flown by and soon it will be cold, snowy, and blowy. I don’t know about you, but I love the nice Fall weather and I am not ready for it to be over. That said, now is a good time to start to strategize about ways to keep our fur babies out of trouble and happy and healthy.

Cat in a bee costume

Here is one of our Halloween costume contestants from last year. Oh so cute!

Halloween is always a fun holiday for kids and pets alike, but there are a few things to watch out for. First, remember that even the cutest of costumes can scare your pets. If they cannot see your face or recognize you in some way they may react inappropriately. I remember one year I wore a costume with a cape. The cape frightened my dog and she ran at me barking! Once she quieted enough to hear me she calmed down, but neither one of was having fun at that point!

Dressing up your pet for Halloween can be a fun activity, but be sure your pet is ok with the idea. Many places sell costumes specifically for dogs and cats. Conversely you can create a costume, but be sure not to use tight ties or bad to hold it on. Sadly, we do see an occasional pet who was injured by a hair band left on too long. Be sure your pet can move freely in the costume and can see easily. After that have fun and remember the puppy or kitty treats!

When trick or treaters are coming to the door, be sure your pets are confined so they don’t become stressed or escape out the door when you answer. If they dash out, they could be injured or give a small person a real Halloween thrill! Better that they are away from all this action. Consider giving your dog a special treat in a quiet place until Trick or Treat is over and the lights are out on the porch. A Kong toy stuffed with their food moistened with some peanut butter or cream cheese and then frozen can give your dog something to do for a while that will be more interesting than barking at the door.

Schnauzer in costume.

We love you too Walt!

Speaking of treats, a plan for handling the sweets and keeping them away from your pets is important. Most people are well informed about the toxicity of chocolate, but other dangers exist. Small boxes of raisins for example can be toxic to dogs and cause kidney failure if ingested. Another hidden danger is the sugar free candy. Many of these contain xylitol, the sweetener that is sugar free. Xylitol is extremely dangerous in even small amounts. Ingestion causes low blood sugar and liver failure. Sugar free gum can poison a dog even if only one piece is eaten. Since candy can be a mine field of danger, be sure the candy is out of reach and in a container that can’t be chewed up or opened by your pets.

Halloween is lots of fun for most. Hopefully these tips will help your pets enjoy it as well. Stay tuned for more Holiday survival information coming for the Thanksgiving holiday. Until then, Happy Halloween!

Dr. Nancy

Ever heard of Dock Diving?

Hi All!

Sorry I haven’t posted in a while.  It has been a whirl wind of a month for our Whitney family.  We are settling into our new home and are enjoying all the new space and amenities!  Since things are going so well,  I decided to take a brief vacation from the practice and try some new things.

That said, a friend had mentioned that she was doing some dock diving completions with her whippets.  All I knew of this sport was what I had seen on TV.  Mostly large dogs with big jumps.  What I didn’t know is that all breeds and even mixed breeds of all sizes are welcome.  I found a local-ish (Rock Falls) place that was holding a trial and set out for an adventure. And what an adventure it was!  We saw dogs of all types: a corgi, a sheltie, many retrievers, whippets, pit bulls, and more.  The goal?  Run! Jump! Swim! One dog (a malinois) jumped 27 feet!

Now I was immediately hooked.  After asking around and talking to folks, I found out I could come up for a lesson.  So of course I signed all 4 of my kids up.  We had a blast.  Poppy is a natural.  Check her out here:

Poppy the golden jumping in the water.

Poppy starts on the ramp.

The dogs are started on the ramp so they can learn how to get out of the water.   After a few tosses of the Frisbee, she was in it to win it!

Poppy jumping in the water.

Poppy exploded off the ramp in style!

After she was comfortable with that, she got to try the dock.  At first it was a little scary for her, as they can see the bottom and it looks far down. Frisbees are worth the risk though, so in she went.

Poppy goes off the dock!

Poppy goes off the dock!

We actually played with all 4 of the kids.  Ami just swam, Weeds was also a natural, and Morgan who hadn’t been swimming in water over his head, quickly gain confidence after I went in the water with him.

All in all it was a great experience.  I can’t wait to try again.  There will be another event in August at the Southtown K9 center.  If you have the time, drive on up and check it out.  I’m sure you will have fun!

Dr Nancy

 

Happy July 4th! Keep your pets safe with these tips!

4th of JulyHappy Independence Day!  Today is a great day to enjoy the festivities of fireworks, picnics and family time!  Sometimes we may forget that our pets may not enjoy some of this as much as we do.

Sure they love the cookout.  Who doesn’t? Remember though that our dogs and cats may not feel so hot if we share our food.  Foods that are high in fat and protein can make some pets sick with pancreatitis and stomach issues. Vomiting and diarrhea will only spoil the fun, so instead, here are few safer foods to offer our pals. If your pet is on a special diet for medical needs, these may not be appropriate either, so use caution if you feed prescription foods!

  • Ice cubes made from chicken broth can provide a tasty treat for pets while they are outside at the picnic.
  • Veggies are generally good, but keep away form the starchy stuff. (Potato salad is not a vegetable! :) )
  • Some fruits can really bring a nice sweet treat. Bananas, apples and strawberries are good choices.  NO GRAPES!

We humans LOVE fireworks.  Unfortunately that is usually not the case for your pets. Even hunting dogs are not fans of this.  The sounds of the explosions can hurt their sensitive ears and the spectacle we love can be overwhelming to them.  Additionally, not all dogs enjoy the social gathering of crowds as much as we think they do.  Best bet:  Leave your dogs at home!  Here are some tips for dogs (and cats) that may be afraid of the racket:

  • Put them in a quiet, darker area of the house.  Sometimes covering them up after putting them in their kennel can help.
  • Some dogs and cats may do better if you put cotton balls in their ears.  Just be sure to take them out afterwards.
  • Play the TV or radio while you are gone.  This can help mask a little of the noise.
  • Consider using an herbal calming agent such as Composure.  These types of herbals will take the edge off without sedating your pet.

Last, but not least, remember all of the troops including the service dogs who have given us the privilege of enjoying this holiday!  Happy fourth everyone!

Justin dressed up

Justin was a true party animal. Just not when the fireworks were exploding.

Dr Nancy

 

We are open and fully ready to serve you and your pets!

Hi All!

Well it has been a wild couple of weeks, but we have officially moved and are up and running at full speed in our wonderful new home.  In case you missed the address it is now 2627 N Knoxville Ave, Peoria, IL 61604.

I wanted to take a minute to thank all of our wonderful staff and their families and friends who came together to accomplish a seemingly impossible task:  THE BIG MOVE! I must admit, there were a few times when I had my doubts that we would be ready on Monday June 22nd, but we were!

I also want to thank all of our many Whitney clients and pets for their patience while we get settled.  Things have been pretty smooth, but as expected we have a had a few glitches.  That said, after a week in our new home, the kinks are getting worked out and we are beginning to feel at home!

Last week I showed you our new waiting areas and exam rooms, so today I want to share our behind the scenes look at our new hospital.  Check out this gallery to see us in action!

 

We have heard form many people who love our new place.  What do you think? I think we will be happy for many years here!

Dr Nancy

It’s Moving Day! Welcome to Our New Home!

“It’s moving day! It’s moving day!”  This is a quote from one of my favorite cartoon movies:  Mrs. Brisby and The Rats of NIHM.  I loved this movie so much and have actually named 2 of my dogs after two of the characters:  Brisby and Justin (The leader of the Rats).  If you haven’t seen it and love a good cartoon for all ages, check it out!

This is how I felt over the last week.  It’s moving day or (week as the case actually was.) I love our Whitney family and they all pitched in to make this happen. I must say it went better than we could have hoped. Things went fairly smoothly when you take into account that we were not only moving a hospital, but also moving for the first time in 29 years! If you have ever moved, then you know what I mean!  The longer you lived somewhere, the harder it is to pack and move.  That said, the Whitney team handled it like pros, and with laughter and skill, we are settled in at the new location:  2627 N Knoxville Ave.

I thought I’d share a few highlights of the move.  This will also give you a very small sneak peak at our new home. I sure hope you will love it as much as we do!

This last week started with a bang!  Dr Roe held down the fort while I and several staff members and their awesome husbands began installing essentials not done by the contractor.  Tables, runs, cages and computer stations all needed to be in in time and set up, to be ready by Monday.  Le Hayes (my Mom) and Adam B. (Jill B.’s husband), Dr Mike and a few friends installed the run system.  This was a difficult task as the floors are concrete and the runs are stainless steal. Cages in the ICU were placed by Le and myself, and then the cages in the general population were set as well as in Isolation.

Next up and happening at the same time,  the BIG packing job.  I must say, the whole team deserves a nod of gratitude.  This was a HUGE project and they handled it like pros!

By Wednesday, we began moving things over. The techs packed and unpacked all of the essentials needed to help make patients well:  Fluids, Surgery equipment, Medications, Pharmacy… all a daunting task, but handled smoothly by the best technical staff in Illinois! At least I think so!  Check out these pictures of them in action!

Suddenly Thursday was upon us and Moving day had arrived!  Fortunately we had help with the big stuff!  The old facility was emptied and the new one filled.  It took all day from 8 am to 8 pm, but it got done!  Now we had to put that stuff away too!  Plus we were still finishing projects such as adding shelving and sprucing up the place! We wanted everything to be top notch and ready to go on Monday!

The whole team was in on the action!  Barb K and Aly had to plan the reception and office areas!  Here they are deciding if items were really needed and if so where!

Barb and Aly

What do you think? Front, Office or garbage?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Everyone was ready and we had some fun and some frustration, but it has all come together in the end.  Several staff members have a real talent for decoration.  Jill C made some lovely works of art from pictures of staff pets and Sheryl, Jill B and company used them to decorate beautifully.  Tami, has a real knack for this too and made the reception area beautiful with small touches of love.  I can’t wait for you to see it!  Here is a sneak peak!

Art2 Art1 CatWait2 CatWait1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last but not least is the painting I commissioned especially for our new home:

Specia lArt

I hope you will all stop in to see us soon!  We hope you love our new home as much as we do!  In the meanwhile,  welcome our Monday furry friends!:

We Can't wait to Serve you!

We Can’t wait to Serve you!

See you soon and stay tuned for a special hospital tour coming soon!

Dr Nancy

 

 

 

 

Happy Memorial Day!

 

Hi All and Happy Memorial Day!

First I want to thank all of the Veterans and their families for their service to our country!  Without you we all could not have this wonderful weekend of Peace and Thankfulness!  A special shout out to Erika T and Dr Mike Manthey.  Both of these people are on staff here at Whitney’s!  Thank you both!

We celebrate the weekend at the Hayes household with opening day at the pool! My Dad used to love to watch the dogs play in the water, so we continue the tradition.  Fact!  We can fit 4 large dogs in a small wading pool.  Check it out!

Weeds shakes it off.

The goldens are not enjoying being splashed.

Flat Coated Retriever in the wading pool.

Weeds is always first in and loves to snorkel around in the fresh water.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Life is Good!  :)
Morgan
That is one happy Flat Coat!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meanwhile,  the garden centers and home centers were bursting with beautiful flowers and trees.  I have been picking out landscaping for our new hospital home, so this was a real treat for me! Check out the gallery of some of the new plants.  Now I just need to find time to plant them!

In addition to these,  I have a couple of maple trees and magnolias to plant.  Some other plants have yet to be determined, including a lilac bush for Dr Roe. It is a favorite of hers, so I will be finding one soon!

I have an entrance garden planned too.  Here’s a sneak peak of some of that garden plan. Click the pictures for a better view.

Well, that brings you up to speed I think.  The moving time is fast approaching!  Stay tuned for updates regarding the moving days and pictures of our great crew at work!

Dr Nancy

We’ll be Moving in Mid June!

Reception view from the Front door.

Reception view from the Front door.

Construction is in full swing.  It won’t be long before we’ll be landscaping and ready to go. Here are the latest pictures of our progress.

 

 

 

The surgery and treatment room are coming together at last.  We have designed this area of the hospital to be open so we can see everyone and all patients from pretty much anywhere in the room.

When designing this area, I wanted to be certain that all of the staff could see what was happening. I also want there to be lots of light. This surgery suite will be home to all of our surgical instruments and monitoring equipment. We will also have our arthroscopic equipment nearby for our use in orthopedic surgeries of the joints.

Feline treatment is also coming together.  The counter tops still need to be installed, but it is looking really good! Our kitty condos will be moved in soon.  They allow the cats to move from one cage to the next for more space.

Feline treatment

 

 

 

 

 

As far as the decorating goes,  I have been having some fun creating a quilt for the feline waiting area. Cat quilt for feline waitingI wanted some fun bold colors and found this cute print fabric at Prairie Point Quilt Shop here in Peoria.  I can’t wait to show you the finished project!  One of my very artistic staff and her son are creating some really neat art pictures of some of the staff’s pets.

 

 

 

 

I’ll have more to show you very soon! Hope you are all as excited as we are!

Dr Nancy

 

Top 5 reasons we are moving: Check it out!

Hi all,

I thought I’d bring you the weekly new hospital update with a quick list of the reasons we decided to move:

Number 5:  We wanted more natural light.  We all know how much better we feel when we get a little sunshine.  Now everyone will be able to see out!

Number 4: We needed more space for Dr Mike Manthey to join us.  We joked around that his office would have to be in the kennel.  Somehow that just didn’t seem right.  :)!

Number 3:  We needed more exam rooms to be able to allow for more openings in the schedule and to reduce waiting time.  Your time is valuable and we recognize that!

Number 2: We needed to be able to provide more convenient hours for our feline friends. Once we move, our purring partners will be able to schedule appointments through out the day and still be in their own cat only areas!

Number 1: To continue to fulfill our mission:

Our Mission … To provide unmatched veterinary healthcare experiences … every day.
Our Vision … We are commited to being your most trusted & compassionate pet care partner.
Our Core Values … *Compassion *Integrity *Dedication *Human-Animal Bond *Education

Would you like to see the newest photos?  Below is a gallery of the cabinets as they are going in.  Featured are the reception area, an exam room, the laboratory and pharmacy, and the feline treatment area.  All are still under construction, but here is a sneak peek!

Well I think that brings you up to date! I hope everyone is getting excited!  I know I am!

Dr Nancy

We’ll Be Moving Soon! Check out the latest below!

Hi Everyone,

Sorry I missed posting last week.  It has been a veritable bee hive of activity at Whitneys in the last 2 weeks!  We’ve been packing up the stuff that is not essential and getting ready for our big move.  Meanwhile, construction is in full swing and progressing so fast that it is difficult to keep up with all the changes!

This last Friday, our Whitney family visited our new home during a staff meeting.  Since many hadn’t seen the progress in a while, it was fun for me to see their excited reactions to the changes that have been made. Of course I made everyone pose for a group picture.  We are missing a few faces here, but most of us made it.

Staff picture in front of the entrance.

The gang’s nearly all here!

So much has changed I thought I would show you some pictures of what has been happening:

First of all, the asphalt is being removed to make room for a large grassy area for the dogs’ needs.  After they remove all of this, they will bring in good soil and then I will plant some nice trees to provide shade and color.  I have already picked out a lovely maple and flowering cherry that are being held at Hoerr Nursery for planting when ready. Asphalt in a pile.

 

 

Asphalt removal. Big diggers at the ready!

 

The is the South side of our new home.  This area will be a large grassy area for the dogs.  Part of it will be fenced for patients that are hospitalized. Part will be available from the front parking area near the entrance.

 

Another big change is that the skylights and windows have been changed out now.  The amount of natural light inside is amazing. Check out the view from the North side of the building.  This is the side you will see as you turn to enter the parking area.

Photo of the building from the North.

This is the view from the parking lot entrance on W Hanssler Pl.

 

Inside of these windows in the treatment, surgery, and ICU areas of the hospital.  The cats have a separate treatment area that is closer to the cat exam rooms.

Windows and skylights in treatment.

This is the view from side of the treatment area.

 

 

This area will be where patients are treated and are recovering after surgery.  Just like people, pets enjoy natural light.  It boosts their spirits and speeds up recovery.

 

 

 

 

 

This isn’t the only changes to be seen.  The colors have been added while painting has been in full swing. I hope you all love these colors as much as I do!  Take a look and let me know what you think!

This only a few of the colors, but they are all cheerful and bright.  The cabinets are also going in, but I don’t have photos of them yet.  Stay tuned for more updates and please tell me what you think! I’d love to hear from you!

Dr Nancy