Wellbeing

Microchipping is now an everyday occurrence and even legal requirement. Our microchipping service includes registration with the Australian Animal registry and we have the new state of the art smaller microchips. Please ensure your pet has the best possible chance of being bought back to you if it goes missing!

MICROCHIPPING >

A microchip is about the size of a grain of rice and is injected under your pet’s skin. It can be done during a normal consultation. The microchip is embedded with a code unique to your pet and is the most effective form of permanent identification. This code is placed onto a national computer database, so it is particularly useful in the return of lost pets. They can also assist where the ownership of an animal is in dispute. In some states of Australia microchipping of pets is now compulsory.

If a pet is ever lost and is handed in at a veterinary clinic or animal shelter a microchip scanner is passed over the animal to reveal the unique code. The vet or animal shelter can then refer to the database to identify the name, address and phone number of the owner, so they can be reunited.

If your pet is not microchipped please give us a call to make an appointment to have one inserted. If you find a lost pet please call us to arrange a scan, we can reunite microchipped pets with their worried owners.

WASHING AND GROOMING >

Grooming is an important part of pet care. Depending on the breed, age,and health of your pet, grooming may even need to be a part of you and your pet’s daily routine. Many breeds require less grooming than this, but regular grooming always helps to keep your pet healthy and comfortable. Some breeds don’t shed their hair effectively (eg. Poodles) and require grooming by a professional every 6-8 weeks. Long haired cats can particularly benefit from regular grooming as it helps prevent the formation of knots on the skin and hairballs in the stomach.

Our Professional Grooming Services

We offer a full range of grooming, clipping and washing services for cats and dogs of all sizes and breeds.

Our professional grooming service has many specialised grooming tools like curry brushes, clippers, stripping combs, slicker brushes, rakes and dryers. These tools enable us to tailor the grooming service to the particular needs of your pet, for an overall optimum result.

We also wash your pet (if appropriate) with a suitable shampoo and conditioner. This makes all the difference in the grooming stage and really brings out the shine in your pet’s coat.

Grooming at Home

We encourage you to also engage in regular grooming with your pet at home. There are numerous benefits of regular grooming, for example:

* Decreased chance of skin problems

* Optimal skin cleanliness and comfort for you and your pet

* Improved monitoring of health issues like cuts, heat, swelling, lameness, or changes in temperament.

* Enhanced behavioural routines with obedient submission during grooming periods

* Closer bonding with your pet through regular contact

So come and visit or make an appointment today.

NAIL CLIPPING >

Regular nail clipping, or trimming, should be part of the routine care of your pet.  It is essential for elderly and indoor pets, whereas outdoor pets may wear their nails down naturally. The requirement for nail trimming can vary depending on breed, age, level of exercise and the environment in which your pet is kept. Working and herding breeds of dogs are active and generally have compact feet with well arched toes that angle the toenails downwards towards the ground. If these dogs are active on hard surfaces such as gravel, rock and concrete, their nails may not need trimming until they slow down with age and exercise less, however you will still need to attend to their dew claws (the little claws on the inside of their front legs that don’t touch the ground) regularly. Other breeds may have nails that grow more forward than downward, and therefore no matter how much exercise they get on rough ground, it is unlikely they will wear down naturally. Some dogs may benefit from having the tips of their nails taken off once every week or two, however for most it will be longer than this, and you will have to decide what is right for your dog by inspecting its nails on a regular basis. Certainly if you notice a change in the sound of your dog’s nails on hard floors this is a pretty good indication that it is time for a trim.

Cats also require nail clipping, with the frequency depending on their lifestyle. Indoor-only cats will need more regular nail trims whereas outdoor cats may naturally wear their nails and require less frequent trimming.

What happens if my pet’s nails get too long?

If a pet’s nails are allowed to grow, they can split, break or bleed, causing soreness or infection in your pet’s feet and toes. Long nails can get caught and tear, or grow so long that they can curl backwards into a spiral shape that can make walking very painful for dogs (it’s like walking in shoes that are too small).Cats are able to retract their claws so this is less common for them, however,cats do still need to have their nails regularly clipped (especially if they don’t get much natural wear and tear). Uncut nails may curl so far that they pierce the paw pad, leading to infection and debilitating pain. Nails should be inspected and/or trimmed on at least a monthly basis. If not, the quick tends to grow out with the nail, making it nearly impossible to cut properly. It is very important not to cut the quick of a nail as this is rich in nerve endings and very painful for the pet. If you do accidentally cut into the quick, pressing the nail into a bar of soap will effectively stop the bleeding.

WE HAVE A VARIETY OF NAIL CLIPPERS THAT SUIT DIFFERENT PETS – FROM THE VERY SMALL TO THE VERY TALL. MAKE AN APPOINTMENT TODAY TO HAVE YOUR PET’S NAILS CHECKED. WE CAN ALSO TEACH YOU HOW TO DO IT IF YOU WOULD PREFER TO CUT THEM YOURSELF.

BOARDING ADVICE >

Going on holidays soon?

Before considering whether to board your pet please check their vaccination records to make sure they have been vaccinated within the past 12 months. If your pet is due for a booster vaccination make sure this is done well ahead of the boarding period. It is a good idea to contact the boarding facility to check their individual policy as to how soon before boarding a vaccination can be administered.

When choosing a boarding facility, there are a number of factors to consider, such as

* How big are individual kennels?

* Is there any natural light?

* Will your pet have access to a run during the day?

* How many kennels are there in the complex? Fewer kennels may mean a quieter, calmer stay.

* Do the kennels smell bad? If so, this can indicate poor hygiene or ventilation problems.

* Are the staff/owners welcoming, friendly and polite?

* Did they require proof of vaccination? Vaccination is a legal requirement to help prevent the spread of disease.

* Are there signs of overbooking or overcrowding?

* Do they provide food or can you provide your own pet’s specific diet?

* Can they medicate dogs if required?

* Which veterinarian do they use in an emergency?

You will need to inform the boarding facility of any health problems your pet may have had or is prone to. If medication is to be administered you should let them know at time of booking. Write down the dose, frequency and name of medication. If on long term medication, please ensure you bring along extra just in case.  Please provide the boarding facility with our details in the event that your pet needs veterinary attention in your absence.

An ideal boarding facility for your pet has a relaxed, calm atmosphere, created by having fewer kennels/animals, a design that minimises stress and allows maintenance of a high standard of hygiene.

PLEASE GIVE US A CALL TO DISCUSS BOARDING AND DETERMINE IF YOUR PET IS UP TO DATE WITH THE REQUIRED VACCINATIONS.

BEHAVIOURAL ADVICE >

Behavioural problems can be due to behavioural causes, medical causes, or both. Our veterinarians will investigate behavioural problems by obtaining a full history and conducting a full examination (sometimes your pet may require blood orurine tests to rule out underlying medical conditions) to accurately diagnose a problem. Behavioural problems are often the combined effect of many factors, including your pet’s environment and learning.

Genetics can also predispose your pet to some behaviours, however the expression of those behaviours will depend on your pet’s early socialisation and training.

Changes in the environment may contribute to the emergence of behavioural problems. For example, changes in routine, a new member of the household (pet, baby or spouse), moving house, or the loss of a family member or pet can have a dramatic impact on behaviour. Any medical or degenerative changes associated with ageing may cause the pet to be even more sensitive to these environmental changes.

Learning also plays a part in many behavioural problems. Early training and socialisation is essential to have a happy, well-adjusted pet. Punishment of behavioural problems often worsens the situation and it is very important that professional advice is obtained as soon as the problem appears to effectively resolve it. Positive reinforcement is the preferred method for changing behaviour, however this also needs to be used carefully as it can encourage undesirable behaviour if used incorrectly.

How are behavioural problems treated?

There is no simple cure for any behavioural problem, so be careful when taking ”helpful” advice. For example, many people with a destructive dog are given the advice to get another dog to fix the problem, however, they may end up with two destructive dogs! It is very important that the cause of the problem is addressed, not just the symptoms of the problem. For example don’t chain a dog up because it is digging; find out the reason for the digging and treat the dog accordingly.

When it comes to your pet’s behaviour, it is extremely important to seek the advice of a qualified veterinarian or animal behaviour specialist. Changing problem behaviour requires commitment on behalf of the whole family, as everyone your pet interacts with will be responsible for encouraging desirable behaviour. For some problems such as barking, escaping, aggression, or separation anxiety it is beneficial to see the pet in its natural environment, thus a home visit may be appropriate. Some cases may also require medications alongside the new training techniques to get the best outcome.

FOR THIS AND OTHER BEHAVIOURAL PROBLEMS WE ADVISE YOU CONTACT US TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT WITH ONE OF OUR VETERINARIANS.

NUTRITIONAL ADVICE >

Along with regular exercise and veterinary care, careful nutrition is the best way you can contribute to your pet’s prolonged good health.

These are the basic nutrients every pet needs:

* Water is the most essential nutrient in any diet. Your pet’s body is made up of approximately 70% water and will quickly perish without it. Ensure your pet can access fresh, clean water at all times.

* Carbohydrates supply energy and come from sugars, starch, and fibre from plant sources. Carbohydrates help energize the brain and muscles, making your pet bright and active.

* Fats also supply energy and in the right amounts help build strong cells and promote nutrient absorption. Too much fat however, can lead to such obesity-related health problems such as diabetes, heart disease and osteoarthritis.

* Proteins are required for a healthy coat, skin, and nails. Your pet’s body uses the amino acids in proteins to make enzymes and hormones in the blood stream and to maintain a healthy immune system. Proteins can come from plant and meat sources, but cats and dogs need a high-quality animal protein.

* Vitamins and minerals help regulate many body systems. For example, your pet needs the minerals calcium and phosphorous for strong bones. Antioxidant vitamins like vitamin E and C help boost your pet’s immune system during times of stress.


How do you make sure your pet’s diet is healthy?

We strongly recommend that you:

* Feed premium pet foods. Premium foods offer high-quality ingredients, are made by companies specialising in nutritional research, and show a solid track record of quality and palatability. Feeding generic pet foods may lead to obesity, irregular bowel movements, or excess intestinal gas.

* Make sure the food is fresh. When you purchase pet food, check for freshness and purchase only the amount necessary for your pet. Store pet food in a cool, dry place and keep it tightly closed. Discard uneaten food and always place fresh food in a clean bowl. In general, hard food (or “kibble”) is preferred for maintaining dental health and minimizing tartar build-up. Soft, canned food tends to be more palatable and can be stored for longer.

* Feed the right amount. Ask us or check the label for how much to feed according to your pet’s ideal weight (not necessarily the same as their current weight). Avoid feeding pets as much as they want or feeding a large amount at one time. Doing so can lead to obesity, gastrointestinal upset, or even bloat, a life threatening condition.

* Maintain a daily routine. A regular schedule will help your pet keep normal bowel movements and avoid indoor accidents. Younger pets need to be fed more frequently, as they are usually more energetic and burn more calories.

* Avoid “people” food. Your pet’s digestive system is simpler than yours and can be easily upset by changes. Feeding table scraps will result in an unbalanced diet, can cause stomach upsets or even life-threatening inflammation of the pancreas.

Life Cycle Feeding

Your pet’s nutritional requirements will change as they age. Puppies need puppy food because it is higher in energy, calcium and protein, but feeding it to an adult dog can lead to obesity. Likewise, older pets need diets restricted in fat and supplemented with fibre for their optimum health. Many premium senior diets also contain additives to assist in the management of arthritis and can make your pet more comfortable.

Please give us a call to discuss your pet’s nutritional needs. We will tailor a diet specifically for your pet that will give them the optimum quality and length of life.

REMEMBER, YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT, AND SO IS YOUR PET!

Call us on 6352 2996 today! For 24/7 after hours emergency assistance please call 6352 4378.