New Years Eve FIREWORKS and your Fur-kids

New Years Eve fireworks and the beat of loud music seems to be a common situation around this time of year. For many pets it is not all fun and games, although we as humans enjoy it, for our Fur-kids they can be quite distressed by it.
Spontaneous loud bangs and explosions, and even unexpected noises can send some pets into a manic state and others will become trembling balls of fur.

Here are a few tips to help your companion cope with fireworks and loud noises:

imageKeep your pet securely contained for the entire night – a fence may not be enough to keep a determined, scared pet from escaping during fireworks or loud music. Scaling fences can also lead to serious injury for dogs. Ideally you should keep your pet inside, in a secure room, like the laundry where they can neither escape nor hurt themselves. It is important that you don’t tie up your dog at the collar, as in a moment of panic he or she could try to get away causing serious injury to his or her neck.

• Most Importantly, ensure your pet is completely identifiable with a microchip, collar ID tag and most importantly, ensure your contact details are up-to-date. If you have any questions around your pet’s identification the National Pet Register can be contacted 24/7 on 1300 734 738. This gives you and your pet the best chance of being reunited in the event they become lost.

• Keep your pet in a secure indoor area during fireworks and thunderstorms. A laundry or garage is good if you have an outdoor pet.

image• Create a hideout for your pet in a quiet room with as few windows as possible. If this is not possible, using a crate as their safe spot/den is a fantastic idea.

• Cover any windows in this room to further block out noise and to block out flashes of lightening or fireworks, or covering the crate with a cover or blanket to create a dark safe spot.

• Create a bed from blankets for burrowing and put an unwashed tracksuit or a similar item of clothing in the room so they have your scent; or prepare your pet’s crate in a similar way.

If you cannot be home with your furr-kids on New Years, a few ppointers for preparing your furr-kids.

• A few days before the fireworks, take your pet into the room/crate and give it treats on the blankets so that it gets comfortable being in the room.

• If you are expecting fireworks, take your dog for a walk in the early afternoon to wear it out. this may help with the settling of your pet later that evening.

• Have food available such as kongs, bones, treatballs and long-lasting treats. Extended chewing will help calm dogs and the stimulation will distract them.

Put on moderately loud music or a TV to muffle loud outside noises and to distract your pet. A small battery operated radio maybe a safe way to incorporate noise. Sometimes familiar ambient noise may help to calm your pet.

Take your dog to the toilet before locking it up, or if you have a cat, remember to put kitty litter in the room.

Beware: if you are leaving the pet unattended and it becomes anxious, it may behave erratically so ensure there are no dangerous items that the pet could chew on or knock. Cables and any breakables should be removed. Make sure your pet cannot escape.

If medicating your pet, follow the dosage instructions exactly and medicate before anxiety sets in. Discuss your plans with your vet.

Return home as quickly as possible to check on your pet and take it to the toilet after the noises have subsided, keeping it on a leash when you do in case it is still upset or becomes spooked.

• Do not punish your pet for any damage/bad behaviour on your return; being fearful is an emotional/instinctual response which an animal cannot control.image

Ask us for more information about progressive desensitisation, a process whereby dogs learn how to tolerate loud noise.

Reference Material:
http://adelaidevet.com.au/pet-library/fireworks-and-coping-with-loud-noises

http://www.rspcavic.org/documents/Health%20and%20behaviour/Fireworks%20and%20thunderstorms/RSPCA%20Fireworks%20Info%20Sheet%20-%203%20Fold.pdf.pdf

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Heartworm Prevention

Will you join Pound Road Veterinary clinic in putting a stop to deadly heartworm by treating your dogs?
Heartworm is a deadly worm that is unlike any other worms you may have heard of; it does not affect our pet’s tummies by living in them and is not passed on through their faeces.
Did you know?
Heartworm is in fact spread by mosquito’s, the mosquito will bite the dog and pass it onto the next unsuspecting dog by biting them too. This will inject the disease into your dog’s blood stream. Unless we work out a way to stop mosquito’s biting all together, which would be a dream come true for all of us especially in summer, we cannot stop potential exposure of this disease.
Heartworm migrates from wherever on the body the host has bitten into the abdomen approximately 3 weeks later. It will move into the dog’s lungs and heart after approximately 3 months, where at this stage they are about 1-2 inches in size… disturbing we know!!
Heartworm is potentially deadly, and in most cases almost impossible to treat.
The female worm can increase in length by almost tenfold (up to 25cm). Understandably, should this be in your dogs heart, it can prevent your dogs heart from functioning properly causing heart failure. While surgical removal and supportive therapy may be possible at specialist institutions, this is rarely done and more likely the cause of heart failure may never be discovered… or at least not until it’s too late.
The scariest part is…
Heartworm IS present in Victoria; there have been recent studies that have shown heartworm is present in all states of Australia! In Victoria, a 2013 study discovered heartworm to be in 4% of foxes tested. Given that foxes are not the natural host of heartworm, the prevalence in non-protected dogs is likely to be even higher.
Although it is more prevalent in tropical regions heartworm has been found in Victoria. While heartworm is very much dependant on temperature for its development, microclimates in urban environments such as car parks with warm cars or 24hour lights can provide favorable environments even in cooler periods of the year.

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Were you were wondering what about my cat?
YES cats can contract heartworm, although the heartworm can not complete its lifecycle in cats therefore making the risk much lower in cats, but animals do surprise us everyday and that risk is still there. The decision is yours.
The good news is we CAN prevent heart worm easily!
Use of regular injections of Proheart can be given twice in the first year of your pet’s life and then only ONCE yearly, often clients will have this done for their pets together with their other yearly vaccinations. It’s quick and easy, and you have peace of mind that your pet will always be covered.
Other types of preventative medicines come in tablet/chewable form or a spot on treatment this must be done monthly. IF treatment is missed your dog may contract heartworm in the time they were not being protected. The preventatives if given after your pet has contracted heartworm will only kill juvenile heartworm therefore leaving adult heart worm untouched and free to grow more.
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The most important thing with ANY of these treatments is CONSISTENCY!
There is MORE good news-
We can test your pet for heartworm if he/she has never been on any preventative medication or has missed their yearly injection/ monthly treatment.
For a limited time only to help prevent heartworm all together, Pound Road Veterinary clinic is offering a 20% discount off Heartworm blood testing, it is done here in our clinic it is quick and easy.
Contact us today to discuss with our friendly staff about getting your pet on heartworm prevention or be sure to mention it in your next consultation with us.
Together we can prevent this deadly disease and help our pets live a long, healthy happy life.

Ways to minimise a cats stress level when coming to the vet!

By Dr Philip McConachy BVSc   image

  • Put Familiar toys and bedding material / towels into the pet carrier & cover carrier with a towel.
  • Spray Feliway into the cage.
  • Put the carry cage down with the door open 30mins before departing to the vet to allow the cat to enter voluntarily.
  • When making your appointment, advise us if your cat gets very anxious and / or aggressive so that we can organise a quiet time to see your cat. This will keep waiting time and other pets to a minimum.
  • If your cat has been aggressive despite these precautions, we can supply sedative medications.

Bowel Obstruction

Bowel Obstructions
By Dr Philip McConachy BVSc

Intestinal obstruction is quite common in dogs; particularly young, larger breed dogs.
Over the years I have surgically removed various things from dogs bowels: corn cobs, peach pips, plastic bags, toys, rocks, audio tape and rope are some of the most common.

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Dogs are very oral creatures just like children. They love to mouth and chew things.
People often worry about bones getting stuck. Infact whilst I have removed bones from dogs mouths and throats, I don’t recall removing one from a dogs bowel. The key is to give your pets the right sort of bones. For cats ad very small dogs I recommend chicken necks. For larger breed dogs I recommend RAW lamb brisket bones and necks.
If you have more than one dog or cat, please separate them while they are eating their bones so they don’t gulp the bones down too quickly or fight over them.
I think every dog should have a treat ball and a KONG toy. These are very safe and also great for relieving boredom.
Instead of placing a bowel of dry food down for your pet, place it in a treat ball and give it to your pooch before you go to work.
This not only reduces boredom, but also stimulates exercise and can help prevent separation anxiety.

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