Advice and Offers

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Neutering….. should I or shouldn’t I do it to my dog?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rio 11 months


Continuing the story of Rio…. He had his neutering or castration operation last week so I know exactly how our owners feel when they drop their little one off on the morning of their operation.

It’s an emotional time worrying if they are going to be ok and if you have made the right decision in putting them through it.

Here at Ashley Vets we believe that for most pets it is the right thing to do however all our pets are individuals so we are more than happy to discuss the pros and cons and the timing of the operation and we will respect any decision you make for your pet.

For Rio, I opted to wait until he was a little more mature but we can castrate male dogs from 6 months old. This often catches them before they become too ‘randy’ so for many families it is a good decision to go ahead at this time.

There are good medical reasons for neutering.

For the boys it prevents

  • Testicular tumours
  • Prostate issues
  • Anal ademonas (tumours around the anus)

As well as of course reducing sexually motivated behaviours, male to male aggression and roaming.

For the girls it prevents

  • Unwanted pregnancy
  • Pyometra (an infection in the uterus)
  • Greatly reduces the risk of mammary tumours

As well as not having the practical inconvenience of regular seasons and hormonal changes.

The operation is carried out here at the practice as a day procedure.

Your little one will need to be starved on the morning of the operation because they will be having a general anaesthetic.

They will be admitted to the hospital and given a thorough check over before a pre-med sedative is given. A blood sample may be taken at this time if you have requested it to check that their internal organs are working correctly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rio feeling sleepy after his sedative

Once the sedative has taken effect, they will be placed under general anaesthetic in our theatre and a tube will be placed down their throat. They will be monitored at all times by the veterinary nurse while the vet is performing the surgery.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rio under general anaesthetic

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rio was constantly monitored while under the anaesthetic

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The surgery to remove his testicles

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stitching up the wound

Once the surgery is complete they will recover in a cosy kennel and will be monitored by our team of nurses and animal care assistants until they are fully awake.

They will of course be given pain killers to keep them as comfortable as possible.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cuddles with Robyn once the surgery is over

They will be ready to go home on the same day by late afternoon and they will have a wound with some stitches in it which stay in place for approximately 10 days. During that time, they will need a little more TLC at home than normal and will need to be rested and stopped from licking their wound.

We will see them back for a check-up which is usually 5 and 10 days after surgery.

Rio was feeling much better by the day after his surgery and his wound is now fully healed and the whole experience hasn’t put him off coming to work with me!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rio snoozing happily under my desk while I work.

If you want to have a chat about neutering your pet please give us a ring on 0141 959 6100 or arrange to come in for a free appointment with Robyn our veterinary nurse so that you can discuss the details and she can answer any questions for you.

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The Importance of worming in puppies…..

Roundworms can spread to pups from their mother before they are born so even when they are very young and have never been outdoors, they can be harbouring a belly full of worms! That’s why it is so important to treat them for worms from such a young age.

Many breeders will have wormed your new puppy before you have brought him home so we recommend you ask your breeder for the details of when this was done and what worming product was used. You should bring this information along to your first appointment with us.

We will advise you of exactly the best protocol for your pup when you come in but basically all puppies should be wormed at least every month until they are 6 months old. This can be done using tablets or spot-on products and we will discuss with you whether or not you would also like to protect against fleas or other parasites such as ticks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rio aged 10 weeks

 

How would I know if my pup has worms?

If your pup has a lot of worms then they may have a pot-belly and be quite thin. It is possible that you could see worms passed in their poo or vomit.

However, for the majority of puppies, there may be no outward signs of the worms so it is important to treat them regardless.

 

Why does it matter if my puppy has worms?

Roundworms can spread to humans and cause a disease called toxocariasis.

This is most important for children who will often play outside where dogs may have been and then put their hands into their mouths without washing them.

For most people, an infection with these roundworm larvae causes no symptoms and the parasites die within a few months.

However, some people experience mild symptoms and in very rare cases, the roundworm larvae infect organs such as the liver, lungs, eyes or brain and cause severe symptoms.

(for more information see http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Toxocariasis/Pages/Introduction.aspx)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Toxocara sp. roundworms

We all want our puppies to be able to play with the whole family without worrying about the spread of parasites so please talk to us and we will come up with the most suitable worming regime for your puppy  and to suit your family!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rio and his big brother!

 

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Puppy Vaccination – why is it so important?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Rio 12 weeks old

If you have a puppy, you have probably heard that they need some injections while they are young before they go outdoors but what are they, why do they need them and when should they get them?


The injections are vaccines against the most common and serious diseases which your pup is likely to come into contact with such as parvo virus, distemper, hepatitis, leptospirosis and we also recommend the vaccine against kennel cough.

 

If their mother was vaccinated then the puppy will get some protection from her which last for the first few weeks of life but by the time your pup is coming home to you this maternal protection will be running out. That is why they need to have the injections themselves.

Your pup will need 2 separate injections and these are usually given at 8 and 10 weeks old but this can be adjusted if necessary for any reason. We can advise you about this when you call.

Until they have had the full course of the vaccines, we recommend that you do not take your puppy out for walks on the ground or let him be in contact with any dogs that you don’t know or are not vaccinated. However, don’t forget how important socialising your puppy is so whenever you get the opportunity you can carry him around to let him get the sights and smells of outside. Have a look at our previous blog for more information on socialisation.

Please get in touch with us as soon as you get your puppy to check what vaccines they need and if you have any questions, feel free to give us a call on 0141 959 6100 for a chat!

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Puppy Socialisation

‘If you’ve been following us on Facebook, you may know that I got a new little cockerpoo puppy, Rio, a few months ago so all things puppy have been on my personal agenda this year. Even if you’ve had a previous dog it’s easy to forget just how much work a puppy can be. Here’s a little reminder of some things to think about…..’
Doranne (veterinary surgeon)

 

 

Rio at 8 weeks old

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So you’ve got a new puppy……….

 

It’s an exciting and sometimes terrifying time when you bring home your new puppy so we are running a short series of blogs covering some if the topics which you will want to know about.

 

 

 

 

First up is puppy socialisation

So what is puppy socialisation?

Socialisation is the process by which puppies learn to relate appropriately to people and other animals. It involves meeting and having pleasant encounters with as many adults, children, dogs and other animals as possible. It also involves becoming used to a wide range of events, environments and situations.

Why is it important?

Experiences during the first year of a dog’s life can make all the difference to their future temperament and character. Taking the time to socialise your puppy can result in a friendly, well-adjusted adult dog who enjoys the company of people, can be taken anywhere and lives life to the full!

A puppy who lacks experience with the world will find many things that we take for granted scary and is very likely to grow up to be a worried dog. A frightened and anxious dog is more likely to develop behaviour problems than a dog who has had a rich, varied and positive puppyhood.

When should this be done?

The younger your puppy, the easier it will be to socialise them. This is because, as puppies get older, they become more cautious when faced with new experiences. The early weeks are particularly important because most puppies will approach anything or anybody willingly and without fear.

By the time your puppy reaches about 12 weeks of age, anything not yet encountered is likely to be approached with caution.

Therefore it is vital that, between three and 12 weeks of age, a puppy meets a wide variety of people, situations and other animals.

How much socialisation is done at this early age will often determine how confident your puppy is around people, other dogs and new environments later in life.

So what can you do?

Much of the socialisation process is easy – it is just about getting your puppy out and about and meeting as many people and animals as possible. If your pup has not had his vaccinations yet, remember he cannot go down on the ground out in the park or on the street but you can carry him in your arms for a walk around the park or to the shops. Puppies love meeting people and a lot of people love talking to pups so just let them and that way your pup will meet lots of new people. Take him in the car regularly or on the bus or the train. Deliberately walk past busy playgrounds so that he will see and hear children playing. You should invite people over to your house to meet your new pup but of course make sure he has plenty of rest time as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You should expose him to noises like bin lids slamming, doorbells, telephones ringing, vacuum cleaners – anything at all which he may encounter in later life.

You should expose him to both busy roads, safely of course, and also countryside environments and livestock if possible.

You should introduce him carefully to other puppies and adult dogs. Before he is fully vaccinated this may be limited but if you have friends and family with fully vaccinated, healthy, friendly dogs then you could introduce them gradually at home so that your pup can begin to learn some doggy etiquette.

Puppy classes can be useful but check out the class before you take your pup along. You are looking for a relaxed environment where all the pups are comfortable and are learning how to interact with humans and to play with other puppies.

 

Don’t forget to have fun with your pup – it’s a special and short time before they grow up so enjoy it and take pleasure from introducing him slowly and gradually to the world around him!

Please talk to us if you have any concerns or need any advice about your puppy!

 

 

 

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Does Your Pet Scratch in the Summer?

Flowers are blooming, the sun is shining, and pets are getting itchy! With summer just around the corner, you may have noticed that your pet (and perhaps you too!) are starting to suffer from seasonal allergies.

While people often show allergies in the form of itchy eyes and stuffy noses like hayfever, pets usually have itchy skin instead. Often times the paws, ears and tummy are the first places to show a flare up.  One of the hallmarks of a dog having allergies are if they stop a normal activity (like eating, walking or sleeping) specifically to scratch. You may also see your pets skin looking red or inflamed.

Often times allergies are a multifocal problem- pets can be allergic to flowers, grasses, different foods, fleas, and even dust.  To help us figure out how to alleviate your pet’s symptoms, we may test them for parasites, take a blood sample for allergy testing, or trial them on a special diet.

There are also simple treatments which can give them relief from the itch!

If you are concerned your pet might have seasonal allergies, please call 0141 959 6100 and make an appointment with one of our vets.

 

 

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Rabbit Blog

Rabbits – how should we look after them?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s rabbit month here at Ashley Veterinary Centre! This month we are celebrating our furry friends and taking a bit of extra time just to review a rabbit’s needs.

 

Housing

While rabbits are often seen in hutches as pets, in the wild they have a very active lifestyle and complex social structures. When choosing a hutch for your pet, we recommend one long enough for your rabbit to hop 3-4 times along, ideally wide enough to completely stretch out, and tall enough for your rabbit to stand upright and not touch the top of the cage. These measurements are per rabbit, so be sure to double this if you have a pair of rabbits (which we encourage!)  It is also very important that rabbits not be confined to their hutches, but rather have 1-2 large, bunny proofed rooms or safe outdoor spaces to run around in.

 

  • Long enough to hop 3-4 times
  • Wide enough to stretch out fully
  • Tall enough to stand upright

 

Feeding

 

A rabbit in the wild will typically spend most of their day chomping on grass or vegetation- that means that your pet bunny’s diet should mostly be made up of grass or hay. We recommend that they eat a pile of hay about the same size as them each day, as well as a healthy handful of leafy green veggies 1-2 times daily. Treats and nuggets should only make up a very small portion of their diet.

  • Lots of hay
  • Leafy green veggies
  • Very small amount of nuggets

If you have any questions or concerns about your bunny or their habitat, please call and make an appointment with one of our vets or vet nurse.

 

0141 959 6100

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Is your pet drinking a lot or are you worried about their ‘waterworks’?

  •  Is your pet drinking excessive amounts of water or urinating more than usual?
  • Is your pet urinating in inappropriate places around the home?

 

You may have noticed it happening gradually or all of a sudden realized that things have changed.

 

There are many possible causes of these symptoms such as kidney disease, bladder infection, diabetes, liver disease, thyroid imbalance, calcium abnormality, adrenal gland dysfunction, uterine infection and electrolyte imbalances; so it is important to come and see us if there are any concerns.

 

Be on the lookout for the following signs your pet may be exhibiting:

 

  • Increased intake of water
  • Urinating more often          
  • Having accidents in the house
  • Straining
  • Going in and out of the litter box
  • Blood in the urine
  • Lack of appetite
  • Changes in behaviour
  • Pain
  • Pot-bellied appearance in your dog
  • Weight changes
  • Activity changes
  • Foul breath
  • Vomiting

 

Water intake in our pets can vary greatly from day to day. So it is important to monitor and assess your pet’s water consumption at home for several days. In this way, you can get an accurate picture of what your pet is drinking. A useful inexpensive tool that can be employed in the comfort of your own home is to keep a log or journal to help record the amount of water in ml per day. Or collecting a sample of your pet’s urine is an inexpensive test and can easily be examined for any abnormalities by your vet, nurse or any one of our staff members.

 

Having to frequently fill your pet’s water bowl can also be a clue as to your pets’ drinking. You can also observe the number of times your dog is needing to go out and urinate or whether your cat’s litter box needs emptying more often.

Keep an eye out for these sometimes very subtle clues.

 

Overall don’t hesitate to come and see us if you have noticed any changes in your pet’s drinking or toileting patterns. If they are urinating in the house and they don’t normally do that or asking out to the toilet overnight or more frequently during the day then there could be an underlying problem.

 

Give us a call to make an appointment.

 

0141 959 6100

 

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Pet Parasites

April this year is our month to highlight the importance of parasites again!

With the start of spring there is an increase in numbers of these little beasties around especially fleas and ticks so although we recommend prevention all year round – now is the time to ensure you have got it all covered!

 

There are lots of different products on the market and we can advise you of the best regime for your dog or cat based on which parasites we are most concerned about and the best method of administration for your pet.

The newest product which we are recommending is given as a monthly chewable treat and it covers fleas, ticks and intestinal worms. It’s great if your dog goes swimming or is not keen on the spot-on products!

dog

 

Please come in and chat to us so that we can help keep your pet parasite free or join our Healthy Paws Plan which is the easy way to spread the cost of all your pet’s preventative healthcare needs.

 

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Dog Tooth Decay

Dental Treatment – Why the General Anaesthetic?

So, your pet has been diagnosed with dental disease, and now you face the conundrum- should I take them for a full anaesthetic and dental treatment? Or should I just try to manage the disease without an anaesthetic?

 

For many people, the prospect of anesthetising their pet can be very scary as there is a degree of risk involved – believe us, we understand – we are pet parents too!

However, if a dental has been recommended, then the risks of the procedure are far outweighed by the benefits to your pet’s quality of life.

In the short-term, dental disease can cause your pet a great deal of pain and distress. If you have ever had a toothache before, I’m sure you can understand how sore it would feel if it were never fixed!

In the long term, dental disease can seed into the body and damage your pet’s organs.

 

But why do they need to be anesthetised for dental treatment?
If you have found it difficult to brush your pet’s teeth before then you may already know the answer to this question.

During a dental we assess your pet’s dental disease (by closely examining and probing any suspicious areas) and decide whether or not extractions need to be made.

We also use tools to scale the tartar and bacteria off such as an ultrasonic scaler and we polish the teeth – just like a human dentist.

Scaling and polishing are both essential to prevent more bacteria from sticking to the teeth.

All of these procedures can be painful to your pet, particularly if they have dental disease. Having a pet anesthetised means this process is not stressful to them and allows us to perform the procedure more thoroughly.

 

While there is always a risk when undergoing a general anaesthetic, we work hard to manage this risk.

Before the procedure, we offer a screening blood test which looks at your pet’s organ health, specifically the organs that help to process the anaesthetic. This allows us to alter our anaesthetic plan or decide against the procedure if there is too much risk.

During the procedure, a vet nurse is on hand to monitor your pet closely, and they are constantly alerting the veterinary surgeon to the pet’s status under the anaesthetic.

Meanwhile, the vet is working efficiently and carefully to correct your pet’s dental disease.

For a more in depth understanding of why dental disease is detrimental to your pet’s health, check out my earlier blog post on the effects of dental disease.

 

If you have any questions about dental disease or dental procedures, don’t hesitate to call us or pop in and remember we are offering a half price offer for a scale and polish of your pet’s teeth this March.

 

Dog Teeth

This patient has just had a dental scale and polish. The tube in his mouth is attached to the oxygen and anaesthetic gas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Dental Disease

March 2017 is Ashley Vets Dental Health Month!
This month is pet dental health month, which may have you wondering- is it really that important for my pet to have clean teeth?

Often dental health is thought of as a purely cosmetic concern, but in reality, the mouth is the gateway to your pet’s whole body.


Any disease in the mouth can lead to disease in the rest of their body.


So, what causes dental disease?

Minerals, saliva and bacteria among other things form a film over the teeth, which hardens and turns into tartar. This tartar is then a perfect breeding ground for bacteria. The bacteria damage your pet’s gums and eat away at their teeth, often leading to a bad smell from the mouth. That smell is actually bacteria which have infected your pet’s mouth.

Why should we treat dental disease? 

If you have ever had a toothache yourself, then you will understand that this mouth infection can be very painful for your pet. Sometimes pets with dental disease will drool, not want to eat properly, and be generally depressed however some pets do not make their distress obvious to us and will carry on regardless. Remember they can’t tell us what is wrong!

Not only can it be painful, but dental disease can affect your pet’s overall health.  The bacteria in your pet’s mouth can easily travel to the rest of the body, where it can damage their heart and kidneys amongst other tissues.  It can even contribute to heart and kidney failure.

By the time our pets are just a few years old, most of them will have some kind of dental disease. This is preventable with routine care, or can be helped with a general anaesthetic and veterinary treatment.

If you are concerned that your pet may be suffering from dental disease, please make an appointment with our vets to decide on a treatment plan or if you are not sure then come along this month and have a free dental check up with our nurse.


It is a painful disease and it is damaging to your pet’s overall health.

Have a look at our guide on ‘How to tell if your pet has dental disease’ and have a check of your pet’s mouth today!

 

 

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