Pet Anxiety Month.

March is Pet Anxiety Month. This is an initiative that has been launched to raise awareness of anxiety related behavioural issues affecting dogs, cats and rabbits. This nationwide campaign is partly in response to the PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report 2018 that revealed half of the veterinary professionals surveyed reported they have seen an increase in dog behaviour related issues over the last two years. Of the pet owners questioned, three quarters of dog owners reported they would like to change at least one anxiety related behaviour displayed by their dog and 90% of cat owners reported their cat was afraid of at least one thing. https://www.pdsa.org.uk/media/4371/paw-2018-full-web-ready.pdf

Many pets display anxiety related behaviour when exposed to common triggers such as loud fireworks, meeting strangers and new animals joining the household. Sometimes, however, their anxiety can be related to not having their basic needs met. The Animal Welfare Act was passed in 2006 and advises that all animals should have five basic welfare needs met including the freedom to display normal behaviour patterns. Sometimes it can be difficult for animals to adjust to modern lifestyles and this can cause them to express a variety of behavioural issues which can consequently affect an animal’s health.

Across the Avonvale Surgeries we have a wide range of expertise in dealing with common anxiety-related issues and we can advise owners how to recognise and tackle these problems. Cats often display stress by inappropriate toileting, over-grooming or becoming withdrawn. Often simple changes can be made to restore happiness to our feline friends. Dogs can show anxiety by increased vocalisation, increased aggression or destructive behaviour. Subtle changes in a dog’s body language can indicate they are suffering from high levels of anxiety. Sometimes small tweeks in their environment and routine can make a huge difference.

Rabbits and ‘small furries’ can also exhibit anxiety if their basic needs aren’t met. Our vets and nurse are happy to offer advice regarding environmental enrichment and best husbandry techniques for providing the happiest possible homes for these pets.

Posted in General News, Pet health care advice |

Parvovirus

You may be aware that there has been a recent increase in the number of parvovirus cases reported locally. Parvovirus is an illness that can cause severe gastroenteritis and can even be fatal in extreme cases.

If your dog has had their annual vaccination they will have been vaccinated against parvovirus and will have protection against the illness under normal circumstances. However, when faced with an increase in the number of cases locally the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA) recommend giving an additional dose of parvovirus vaccine to dogs between 4 and 12 months of age. Whilst the vast majority of puppies will have protective immunity following their puppy vaccinations, there will always be a very small minority for whom immunity is reduced. This is because Maternally Derived Antibodies from the puppy’s own mother can prevent a full immune response to a vaccine in a very small number of puppies. The additional parvovirus vaccination from 16 weeks of age will give greater assurance of protection for all dogs.

If you would like your puppy to have this additional vaccine please contact your local Avonvale surgery for details.

Posted in General News |

Dental Promotion

Dental disease among cats, dogs and rabbits is one of the most common problems we deal with at Avonvale and there are some simple steps all pet owners can take to improve their furry friend’s oral health.

To help you get started on the road to better dental care for your pet, we’re offering a scale and polish for £150, from now until 31st March 2019.

Please call your local surgery to find out more, or see our offers page at www.avonvets.co.uk/services/offers/ for more information.

Posted in General News, Pet health care advice |

Act now if taking pets abroad after Brexit

We’re advising pet owners they have until the end of the month to act if they intend to travel to the European Union (EU) with their furry friend from the end of March.

Currently, dogs, cats and ferrets can travel anywhere in the EU as long as they have a pet passport, which sees owners take their animals to an Official Veterinarian (OV) three weeks before a trip to be microchipped and vaccinated against rabies.

However, last month, the Government issued a paper preparing for a possible No Deal Brexit, in which it advised pet owners wanting to go abroad after 29th March 2019 that they have to take their pets to an OV at least four months before travelling – meaning the end of November deadline is fast approaching.

Our advice

The turnaround for organising microchipping, vaccinations and a pet passport has always been relatively short but the Government has now warned that, with no EU deal, pet owners may have to visit their OV as early as the end of next month for an April trip abroad.

The pet could have to have a rabies vaccination, followed by a blood test at least 30 days after the date of vaccination to show the pet has become immune. Once that is completed, the pet would then have to wait at least three months from the date of the blood test before they can travel.

This process takes at least four months in total. Owners would then have to visit a vet to obtain a health certificate, which can’t be done more than 10 days before travel.

It’s certainly worth being organised ahead of any planned trips abroad with your pets early next year and with time ticking until the November deadline, I’d recommend getting your animals booked in to see an OV as soon as possible to avoid any undue or unforeseen delays.

More information

Please call to speak to one of our OV vets if you need any help or advice on pet passports.

Further information on the issue is available via the GOV.UK website.

Posted in General News, Pet health care advice |

Top tips to help protect pets around fireworks season

It may be hard to believe but it’s that time of year again, when we start thinking about how best to care for our pets as fireworks season gets under way.

We know this can be a very tough time of year for pets, who can become stressed and unsettled as fireworks are used ever more frequently – not only for the traditional November 5th bonfire night but also in celebration of Christmas and New Year’s Eve.

With this in mind, we’ve put together a list of top tips to ensure your pet stays safe during fireworks season:

  • Always keep cats and dogs inside when fireworks are let off
  • Some pets like to hide in the bathroom. Make sure toilet lids are down if you have a small dog or cat. Beware if you have the older style of toilet with the exposed U-bend as some dogs can wedge between the pipework and become stuck
  • Close all windows and doors, draw curtains and seal up cat flaps
  • Let your pet pace around, whine, mew and hide if they want to. Don’t try to coax them out – they are trying to find safety and should not be disturbed
  • Hutches and cages should, if possible, be taken into a quiet room indoors or into a garage or shed. If this isn’t possible, turn them around to face a wall, creating a black-out from the flashes of fireworks
  • Give your small pet extra bedding to burrow into so it feels safe
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Keeping your pet safe in the heat

With temperatures due to rise again, here is some advice about keeping your dog safe in the heat.

The dangers of leaving pets in the car in this heat are well known but we should also beware of the temperatures that can occur in closed caravans and conservatories. Pets shut inside need shade, ventilation and access to plenty of water.

Keeping your pet safe in the heat - Milo is hotActive dogs and those with dark thick coats can also be prone to heat exhaustion if walked in the heat of the day. Although a dog may continue to play and run around they may in fact be experiencing the first signs of heat exhaustion. Signs are excessive panting with chest heaving, restlessness and even vomiting and diarrhoea, leading to collapse. Heat stress and dehydration can be fatal if not treated immediately.

If you suspect your dog to be seriously dehydrated, contact your vet immediately and try to keep your dog cool by showering them with water, covering in wet towels and fanning to aid evaporation.

In this heat avoid excessive exercise in the middle of the day and restrict walks to the cooler early mornings or evenings. Keep water available at all times and encourage your dog to drink.

You may also have read the misleading posts doing the rounds on social media recently about giving ice to dogs. There is no danger in giving your dog ice cubes to crunch on or a cold paddling pool to play in. There are both great and fun ways to help your pet stay cool during the summer.

Posted in General News, Pet health care advice |

Avonvale Gold Club

We are pleased and proud to announce the launch of our new Gold Club. At Avonvale, we understand the special relationship people have with their pets and we aim to provide the best possible health care in a friendly and welcoming environment.

Avonvale Gold Club

The Gold Club is a convenient and affordable way to spread the cost of your pet’s visits to the practice along with covering their vaccinations, flea, worm and parasite treatments. There are also great discounts and savings on many products and services that all help to ensure your pet receives the very best healthcare. It includes all of your pets consultation fees (excluding acupuncture, hydrotherapy and physiotherapy) as well as their annual boosters and flea and worm treatments.

We believe a proactive preventative approach to your pet’s health is far better than waiting until he or she is ill or suffering to put things right. Regular health checks and early diagnosis of potential health issues may help your pet enjoy a long and comfortable life. We have teamed up with Animal Healthcare Company who administer our Pet Club plans and collect your direct debits on our behalf. This leaves us free to concentrate on looking after your pets.

How to Register

Joining one of our Pet Clubs is easy. Call into our surgeries with your bank details and complete a direct debit form. You can also sign up at the time of any appointment or vaccination.

Pay your first month’s fee and complete a simple direct debit application form to authorise a further 11 monthly payments of the same amount each month. Your first direct debit payment will be requested 14 days after joining and monthly thereafter.

If you cancel your policy at any time other than at your plan anniversary you will be required to pay Avonvale the outstanding amount for the products and services you have received. In the unfortunate event that your pet passes away or goes missing please inform us immediately.

Avonvale Gold Club is not a pet insurance policy. It spreads the cost of routine preventive pet care at the recommended annual doses, which is not covered in standard pet insurance policies, although all consultations are included, it does not cover the costs of all veterinary care so we recommend taking out separate pet insurance for this.

Gold club pricing

*Not covered in Pet Club Plus

**Excludes: Medications, Laboratory Tests, Routine and Non-Routine Surgical Procedures, Out-of-hours supplements

***Vaccination includes: Dogs – Distemper, Parvovirus, Hepatitis, Leptospirosis & Parainfluenza (excludes Rabies and Kennel Cough)

Cats – Feline Enteritis, Feline Flu, Leukaemia & Chlamydia (excludes Rabies)

Learn more by visiting our website.

Posted in General News |

Easter opening hours

Easter opening hours

We would like to wish all of our clients and your pets a very happy Easter weekend.

We are open as usual on Saturday as follows-

  • Warwick surgery- 8.30am – 5pm
  • Stratford surgery- 8.30am – 2pm
  • Leamington, Kenilworth, Wellesbourne and Southam surgeries- 8.30am- 12.30pm

Outside of these hours, from 6.30pm tonight and 8.30am on Tuesday morning our Out of Hours Service is  available. This is staffed by Avonvale vets and nurses at our own Small Animal Hospital in Warwick and is available to all of our registered clients.

If your pet does require any emergency care over the bank holiday weekend, please phone 01926 400255 or your usual Avonvale surgery number and we will be happy to help.

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Chloe’s sore throat

Chloe's sore throat

 

This is Gorgeous Chloe who was seen at our Kenilworth surgery last month. Her owners had noticed that Chloe had suddenly started retching and swallowing and seemed in discomfort.

Kenilworth vet Sophie examined Chloe and was suspicious that some thing had got caught in her throat which she wasn’t able to clear herself. Chloe was given an anaesthetic the same day and a blade of grass about 10cm long was found at the back of her throat. This was easily removed using long forceps, and thankfully no other damage had been caused.Blade of grass that Chloe had swallowed

Once Chloe woke up from her anaesthetic she was immediately more comfortable and was no longer retching. She is now happy and well at home and feeling a lot better after her ordeal.

 

Posted in General News, Kenilworth News |

Alabama Rot

 

Alabama rot

You may have heard a lot of talk about Alabama Rot recently following several cases in the last few months, mainly around the North East, South Wales and the South West. This blog will give you some further information on the condition and what to be aware of.

What is it? 

Alabama rot is a skin and kidney disease of dogs. Dogs of any age or breed can be affected. It is an extremely rare condition that has affected only a small number of dogs in the UK. The cause of Alabama rot is unknown although there appears to be a link with dogs walked in some woodland areas. Although we don’t know the exact cause, we know that Alabama rot cannot spread to other dogs or to people from an affected dog.

What signs would I see?

You might see a lump or patch of red skin often on the legs of your dog. Sometimes the skin can have an ulcer or open sore. The signs of kidney disease can be a reduced appetite or your dog being unusually quiet or tired. These signs can be seen with a number of other illnesses and are not necessarily an indication of Alabama rot.

Can I prevent it? 

Because the cause is unknown there are no recommendations for how we can prevent the disease occurring. It has been suggested to bathe any area of your dog which becomes wet or muddy on a walk; however, at this stage it is not known if this is necessary or of any benefit. Cases have been reported in many different areas in the UK and there is no current advice for dog owners to avoid any particular locations. No environmental cause for this disease has been proven.

What should I do if I am concerned?

If you notice any other the signs mentioned- unexplained skin lesions, particularly if your dog is also unwell- then please contact us as soon as possible. Your vet can carry out some tests that will help to identify the cause.

It is important to remember that only a very small number of dogs have been affected. Most skin lesions will not be caused by this disease and most cases of kidney failure will have another cause.

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Posted in General News, Pet health care advice |