Spring Allergies

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he sun appears, the flowers come out, and people start sneezing! But dogs can also suffer from seasonal allergies which often begin to affect them in the spring. Allergy to pollen in dogs (unlike people) usually causes itching. Dogs can be allergic to grass pollens, plant pollens (especially from weeds and wildflowers), and tree pollens. It is thought that the …

Easter Advice

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Vets aren’t fond of Christmas and Easter…  there are too many dangerous temptations for curious and greedy pets! Most people are now aware that chocolate is toxic, and potentially fatal, for dogs. High quality dark chocolate is the most dangerous, but bars of milk chocolate can cause illness in small dogs. Keep sweets away from dogs and keep a note …

Obesity in Pets Case Study by Vicky Payne

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INTRODUCTION Pet obesity is a growing problem. In a cross-sectional study of pets attending five UK veterinary practices (Courcier et al., 2010) it was found that 39% of cats and 59% of dogs were found to be overweight or obese when body condition score was assessed. Owner perception of pets’ bodyweight differs from these findings with the PDSA Animal Welfare …

Being Active With Your Dog

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ears ago, I met an elderly Dutch lady walking in the Scottish Highlands and, being British, I commented on the appalling weather. She surprised me by replying that, in Holland, they have a saying that there’s no such thing as bad weather, we just have the wrong clothing most of the time. Not only do I wish I could speak …

The Problem with Overweight Pets

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t’s that time of year when everyone is thinking about a healthy lifestyle! It’s not just people who can end the winter carrying more weight than is ideal due to poor weather-limiting opportunities to exercise outside, or due to extra eating over the festive period. Vets estimate that over 50% of the dogs they see are overweight or obese, yet …

Wintery Skin

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Dogs owners usually associate itchy dogs with the spring and summer, but skin problems can occur all year round, and some are actually more common in winter. Fleas! In the past many dog owners would only use preventative flea products in the summer, and found they didn’t need to use them in the winter. Unfortunately, mild winters, soft furnishings, and …

Christmas Food Toxicity

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The Festive Season is just around the corner and many of our celebrations revolve around food. Most vets would say that they treat an increasing number of dogs that have eaten food which is toxic at this time of year. Top of the toxic list has to be chocolate! Toxicity varies with the cocoa content, but high-quality dark chocolate is …

Winter Fitness

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As winter progresses, I notice that an increasing number of dogs coming in for their Annual Health Check are carrying more weight than is ideal. When I politely point out that ‘Fido’ could do with losing a few pounds the response is usually, “He always puts on weight at this time of year because we can’t walk him as far.” …

Autumn Health

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Autumn is a lovely time for dog walks, as the weather cools down and the leaves start to turn, but take care not to come back with more than you bargained for. Ticks continue to be a problem in some areas at this time of year (especially if you cross farmland) so check your dog after every walk and consider …

Feeding the Canine Athlete

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The objective of feeding any dog is to provide the best possible nutrition to ensure appropriate body condition is maintained whilst supporting the dog’s lifestyle and age. Working dogs, however, have higher energy needs than the average pet dog. Energy requirements (and the fuel which supplies the energy) will differ, depending upon the type of work the dog is undertaking. …