Lynwood Veterinary Clinic
568 Metcalfe Rd
Ferndale, WA, 6148
Phone: 08 9451 3575
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Welcome to 2017! We can't believe how quickly the New Year has come around again. So what resolutions have you made for yourself and your furry family? Dr Louise is going to try to find more time to relax this year and spend time with her kids, both 2 and 4 legged! Hopefully we will have a new vet on board soon to help out with some consulting and we can all achieve a better work-life balance this year.

Our first newsletter for the year has articles on heat stroke and grass seeds - the curse of summer in Australia. Grass seeds are nasty and so far this year we have removed them from ears, paws and one dog even required surgery to remove one from his side. Read the articles below for tips on what to watch out for this summer. And check out the funny video at the end - it's one of our absolute favourite videos and makes us laugh every time we watch it!

New Years
Contents of this newsletter

01  Attention all dog owners

02  Avoiding heatstroke

03  How you can help our Australian wildlife this summer

04  Watch out for grass seeds!

05  Dog's reaction to a new kitten

01 Attention all dog owners

We are often asked: why is it necessary to vaccinate against kennel cough even though my dog isn't boarding?

Here are the facts. Kennel cough's correct name is canine cough. It is commonly spread via water droplets through the air and can be transmitted between ANY dogs. It is often incorrectly referred to as 'kennel cough' and this is simply because the boarding kennels are a common place for it to be transmitted (given the high numbers of dogs in one area).

But ANY dog can contract canine cough; at the park, at the groomer, doggy day care and even walking down the street! As it can be spread through water droplets, a communal water doggy bowl at your local cafe may even be a potential source.

Vaccination is the key as it protects your dog against the worst strains of the disease (the ones that can typically cause nasty pneumonia). It's important to realise that dogs can still contract a cough even if they are vaccinated but it's never as bad as if they aren't vaccinated.

We are now using a new oral vaccine against Bordetella, one of the causes of canine cough. This is proven to give better immunity than injectable Bordetella vaccines.

If you have any questions about vaccination and your pet, we are the best people to ask for advice!

02 Avoiding heatstroke

The heat is on and as we battle our way through summer, spare a though for your pet.

Our pets are super susceptible to heatstroke. They can't sweat all over like humans do and they only produce a tiny amount of sweat through their footpads. The only way they can attempt to cool themselves down is through panting.

Heatstroke (also known as heat exhaustion) can be very dangerous and even fatal. It doesn't necessarily need to be really hot or humid for heat exhaustion to occur so it’s important to be able to recognise the signs and know what to do.

Keep an eye out for:

  • Excessive panting
  • Exaggerated and noisy panting
  • Drooling
  • Weakness or collapse

If you are worried about your pet, bring your pet to us immediately (or seek emergency veterinary care). It's best to place your pet in front of the air conditioner or a fan while you are in the car. You can also place wet towels on hairless parts of the body (footpads and groins). 

Tips to help prevent heatstroke:

  • Don't leave your pet in the car - the internal temperature of a car can become like an oven in minutes (even on a mild day)
  • Avoid exercising your pet in the heat of the day
  • Consider clipping your pet's coat to help them stay cool 

If you are ever concerned about your pet in the heat you can always call us for advice

03 How you can help our Australian wildlife this summer

After a few hot days, it is not uncommon for our wildlife to become dehydrated and suffer from heat stress.

You might notice wildlife coming down to ground level searching for water (especially possums and koalas).  Birds will open their beaks or hold their wings away from their body and some animals will even have burnt feet from walking on hot tarmac or a hot roof. 

How you can help our native friends:

  • Place shallow containers of water around your garden at varying heights (remember to put a stick or rock in them so if animals fall in they can get back out again)
  • Keep cats and dogs inside and supervised at all times to prevent them preying on vulnerable wildlife

If you find an animal suffering from heat stress call us as soon as possible and we can give you the best advice. 

04 Watch out for grass seeds!

As the grass starts to dry off you need to keep your eyes peeled for the dreaded grass seed... who knew that something so small and innocent could cause so many problems!?

Certain types of grass seeds are shaped like a pointy arrow with a needle-like tip and once they are caught in your pet’s fur they can start to burrow aggressively into your pet’s skin with no way of escaping.

If the seed does not exit, a painful abscess can form and this may lead to the need for surgery to remove the seed or remnants.

Keep an eye out for a lump or swelling (particularly between the toes), excessive licking, pain or pus and bloody discharge from a small wound.

Occasionally a grass seed will end up in your dog’s ear canal leading to intense irritation. If you notice your dog is shaking his head or appears itchy around the ears, a check up with us is essential.

We recommend that you check your pet for grass seeds daily and after every walk - concentrate under the paws, between the toes, around the ears and in the armpit region. You'll be amazed how many seeds can become hidden in your pet's coat - and they are just waiting to cause trouble!

A keen eye will prevent grass seeds becoming a problem so be vigilant and don’t let these little nuisances take hold.

05 Dog's reaction to a new kitten

Did your pet get something awesome for Christmas? We couldn't help but share this hilarious video with you to help kick start your New Year with a laugh.

Check out this pooch's reaction when he finds out there's a new kitten in the house!