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Lynwood Veterinary Clinic
568 Metcalfe Rd
Ferndale, WA, 6148
Phone: 08 9451 3575

With the holiday period rapidly approaching it's a good time to ensure your pets vaccinations and parasite prevention are up to date, especially if you are planning on boarding your pet over Christmas. Even if you are taking your dog away on holiday, making sure they are covered against parvovirus is essential as outbreaks are more frequent in country areas where owners may be more lax about vaccination. Tick and flea prevention should also be maintained so there aren't any little crawly hitchhikers coming home with you.

dog holiday
Contents of this newsletter

01  Correct use of antibiotics

02  Fleas are out and about

03  Vaccinations - ask us for the right advice

04  Don't let your pet get stressed in the heat

05  Crazy cat markings

01 Correct use of antibiotics

One of the greatest threats to human and animal health is antibiotic resistance and the emergence of 'superbugs'.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) warns that 'unless urgent action is taken on the use of antibiotics in humans and animals, the world is heading for a post-antibiotic era, in which common infections and minor injuries can once again kill'.

In the veterinary world, we are taking notice of these concerns and doing our bit to help prevent a global catastrophe. In fact, Australian veterinarians have guidelines in place to ensure they are not overprescribing or misusing antibiotics.

Here are some essential things to understand:

  1. Antibiotics can only be helpful in the presence of a bacterial infection. They cannot treat viral infections and are not needed in clean wounds
  2. We sometimes need to identify the type of bacteria present to help choose the most appropriate antibiotic and this involves taking samples for culture and sensitivity testing. This may need to be done at an external laboratory
  3. If your pet is prescribed antibiotics you must always use them as directed and finish the course, even if you think your pet is 'better' - stopping too early can lead to the development of resistant bacteria
  4. A revisit may be necessary to check your pet's and extend the course of antibiotics if necessary
  5. Never start any 'left over' antibiotics you have before you get your pet checked with us

And finally, please don't ask us to prescribe antibiotics without a consultation as it is unethical and it's against the law!

02 Fleas are out and about
dog scratching3

The warmer weather is slowly arriving, which also means fleas are beginning to become more active, as they thrive in warm and humid conditions. Contrary to popular opinion, dry sandy places are not their preferred place to live. Immature life stages of fleas live in the environment and when conditions are right they mature, and then jump onto a nearby host who crosses their path. Flea free animals rarely contract fleas from meeting an animal with fleas, rather it is generally from a infested environment. 

Some signs that may indicate a flea problem -

  • adult fleas visible on your pet's skin
  • presence of flea dirt - brown black granules on the skin/coat that if put on a damp tissue will stain red as its digested blood
  • some animals will be hypersensitive and have an allergic reaction to flea saliva making them very itchy - these may develop hairloss or even wounds from scratching, chewing or overgrooming
  • in some cases animals with heavy flea burdens can become anaemic and show signs of lethargy and pale gums - this is more common in small young puppies and kittens

Fleas are easily prevented in most animals. There are many different products on the market from collars to monthly tablets or chews and topical spot ons. There is also a new tasty chew for dogs that controls fleas and ticks for 3 months.

If you are confused by all the options for flea control just ask us to help find the best option for your pet. 

03 Vaccinations - ask us for the right advice

Vaccination is a hot topic in the media at the moment. There's plenty of information and scare tactics floating around on social media and so when it comes to vaccinating your pet, we want you to get the right advice.

The take home message is that vaccination is one of the most important tools we have available to help keep your pet healthy. Vaccinations are safe, have minimal (if any) side effects and the reason we recommend vaccinations is because they work.

These are the top reasons vaccinations are so vital:

  1. They protect against deadly diseases: many dangerous diseases are completely preventable with the correct vaccinations.
  2. Vaccinations save money: vaccinations are substantially less expensive than the cost of treatment for the diseases they prevent. 
  3. You can board your pet with other animals: if you ever plan to board your dog or cat he must be up to date with his vaccinations - what would happen if you had a family emergency and boarding was the only option?
  4. Visits to the vet hospital: if your pet has to stay in hospital he needs to be vaccinated. If your pet is sick, his immune system may be already be compromised so you want to know he is protected.

There are many diseases we are able to vaccinate against but your pet's health, lifestyle and where you live may affect which vaccinations are deemed necessary - we can help you make an informed decision and are always happy to discuss vaccinations with you.

When it comes to vaccinating your pet, we will give you the right advice. 

04 Don't let your pet get stressed in the heat

The warmer weather is here and it's time for days at the beach and ice cream in the sun. With the warmer weather comes an increased risk of heat stress for your pets.

Heat stress or heat exhaustion is a common condition seen in Australia. It is more common in dogs as they have very few sweat glands for heat loss and are generally more active than cats.

Signs of heat stress:

  • excessive panting
  • drooling
  • extreme lethargy
  • staggering
  • weakness and collapse
  • seizures

Heat stress can kill your pet. All pets are at risk but brachycephalic dogs with a short nose (such as pugs and bulldogs), overweight pets, pets with heart or respiratory problems or those with thick, furry coats are at greater risk.

So what's the best way to avoid heat stress?

  • Never leave your pet in the car as the temperature can reach dangerous levels in just a few minutes, even on a mild day. Parking in the shade or leaving the windows partially open is not acceptable
  • Make sure shade and cool water is available ALL DAY. On extremely hot days, your pet may need to be kept inside. 
  • Never exercise your pet on a warm day - stick to the cool of the morning or evening (or skip exercise all together.)
  • Some pets will need to have their heavy coat shaved to provide some relief from the heat.

If you think your pet is suffering from heat stress you should seek veterinary attention immediately as heat stroke is an emergency. 

If you are ever worried about your pet you should call us for advice, we are always here to help.

05 Crazy cat markings

Here are some pretty cool cats!

Check out their crazy fur markings - from cinnamon rolls to the cat burglar, which one is your favourite?

Click here to view them at Bored Panda.