Causes Of Collapse In Dogs

dog fallen over

Emergency facts (details below):

When a dog suddenly falls over or cannot use their back legs, it is usually an emergency. You should travel to a vet.

On the way, take a video if you can. Here are some things to look for:

  1. Is there muscle movement? This is common in seizures or poisonings.
  2. Is the dog unconscious? Look for a lack of response and passing urine or faeces.
  3. Are the eyes moving? Vestibular disease causes nystagmus or eye flicking.
  4. Is the heart rhythm normal? Place your hand on the chest and try to feel it.
  5. How long does it last? Fainting and airway issues usually only last for seconds.
  6. Is recovery quick? After seizures, dogs commonly appear incoordinated for some time.
  7. What was the dog doing beforehand? Cardiac, respiratory and thermal problems are more common after exercise.

Cardiac arrest is an extremely uncommon cause, and therefore it is not recommended to try CPR. You will see that most causes either recover by themselves or require treatment that only a vet can give.

Now let’s dive deeper into each of these causes…

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Can You Treat A Dog’s Ear Infection Naturally?

natural remedy treatment

If you research home remedies for ear infections you’ll find all these choices…

  • Aloe vera
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Calendula
  • Chamomile
  • Coconut oil
  • Garlic
  • Grapefruit seed extract
  • Homeopathy
  • Oil of oregano
  • Mullein
  • Witch hazel
  • Yoghurt

The reason there is so much interest in home remedies is simple: dog ear infections can be extremely frustrating. They are common, they keep coming back and they can get very expensive. That’s without even mentioning the discomfort they bring to dogs.

I’m here to tell you that you can stop ear infections. But it’s never easy.

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Help! My Cat Has A Bloated Stomach

cat swollen stomach

Essential facts (details below):

Causes Of A Swollen Belly In Cats

There are five likely causes for an enlarged abdomen in a young cat:

  • Intestinal worms, especially in untreated kittens up to three months of age
  • Pregnancy, in undesexed, free-roaming female cats
  • Abdominal fat deposition, which is usually easy to identify
  • Excessively large meals (swelling should come and go)
  • Feline infectious peritonitis or FIP
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Why Dogs Get Ear Infections

If your dog suffers from ear infections, then you need to know why they happen. And especially why they keep coming back.

I won’t dumb this down. I will do my best to keep it simple, but the reality of how ear infections happen is complex.

Please stick at it! What comes next may be hard going, but those who reach the end will know more than many professionals. They will also have a clear idea of why some treatments don’t work.

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Immune‐Mediated Haemolytic Anaemia in Dogs

Every time I attend a conference, the lectures on immune‐mediated haemolytic anaemia (IMHA) are among the best attended. This is because almost no other common disease of dogs makes vets feel so powerless.

This page is a summary of two recent consensus statements from the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine. It puts together the best of what we know into one guideline on diagnosis and treatment. Most importantly, it’s written in a way that dog owners can understand.

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Your Dog or Cat & Coronavirus COVID-19

kitten with interferon

Find the facts below about dogs and cats and coronavirus COVID-19. Keep checking this page for updates on the situation.

Vets across Australia are open as normal. Walkerville Vet requests that clients:

  • Maintain 1.5m from staff and other clients (nurses will hold your pet for examinations)
  • Do not pay with cash
  • Not attend the clinic if in isolation or even mildly unwell
  • Wait on the front lawn if there are 6 or more people in the waiting room
  • Come to the clinic alone whenever possible, and without children

Now dive deeper…

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Chronic Diarrhoea In Dogs

So your dog has had diarrhoea for more than two weeks, and you have ruled out all the more common causes of diarrhoea found here.
A basal cortisol level has even been done to rule out the 4% of these dogs that have Addisons disease.

What do you do now?

The answer is to consider the possibility that your dog has chronic enteropathy, or CE. This is a poorly understood group of related disorders that often respond to dietary, antibiotic or immunosuppressive treatment. Sometimes the solution is more than one of these approaches.

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Does Laser Therapy For Dogs Really Work?

cold laser treatment

Laser therapy for dogs is now something that I get asked about regularly. It offers treatment for problems that are very frustrating to both dogs and owners. These are conditions like:

But does it work? Is this relief for suffering dogs or just another false hope?

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Do We Really Want To Live In A Society That Traps Cats?

“Unfortunately, there are people out there who don’t like cats — hate cats — and too often we see what happens to cats when they are trapped by these sorts of people.” RSPCA South Australia chief executive Paul Stevenson

“A law like this would give the worst elements of society Carte Blanche to abuse their neighbours’ pets” Brian May (guitarist in Queen)

Why are these two so worried?

New cat curfew laws proposed by Marion Council will allow the trapping of any cat found off the property from 9pm to 7am. Not just by council staff either. By anyone at all.

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Do Dogs Need Senior or Mature Foods?

commercial dog diet

A few years ago, a sales rep for one of the major dog food companies came to me. The serious expression told me that there was something wrong.

“Andrew, you’re not making enough senior dog food sales.”

This wasn’t a surprise to me. Instead I said what I always say: “bring me the evidence that senior diets improve the health of dogs and I’ll use them.”

See also: Do Cats Need Senior Foods?

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Should My Itchy Dog Get Prednisolone?

dog prednisolone tablets

If you have an itchy dog, then you know how hard it can be. What would you say then if you were told that one of the most effective treatments is sometimes not offered to you? Or that other times it should never have been used.

Prednisolone is a problematic drug, and I understand why vets avoid it, but sometimes it’s just what’s needed. Amber, who’s pictured above is a perfect example.

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It’s True, Cats Get Parvo Too

Kitten face closeup

News Flash: Since writing this, there have been increasing reports of feline parvovirus outbreaks in the northern suburbs of Adelaide.

A few years ago I started getting questions about a new cat viral outbreak called cat plagueCat plague? I may have been seeing cats for 25 years, but this was news to me too.

A quick google and it all became clear: this is a new name for an old disease. It goes by all these names:

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Broken Legs In Italian Greyhounds

Italian Greyhound broken leg

Dante is an all-too-familiar story. I saw him recently for vaccination and immediately noticed the scar on his leg. What happened? He was running and broke his leg.

If this happens to your dog, here’s a quick first aid tip: carefully put the lower leg into a roughly normal position, wrap it in a t-shirt until it’s a thick roll and then sticky tape it. If you can’t do this, just keep your dog as quiet as possible. This will stop possible damage to soft tissues caused by excessive motion across the fracture site. Then go straight to a vet.

Leg fractures in Italian Greyhounds are common. If you’re looking to buy a puppy, or take out insurance you might well ask, “yes, but how common?” The answer may affect what you do next.

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What Is The Best Cat Litter?

cat litter choices

I have no idea how most cat owners end up choosing a cat litter. If my experiences are anything to go by, it’s trial and error. I doubt they try more than a few before settling on a favourite.

This is a vet review of the common and popular types of cat litter in stores. I’ll help you understand:

  • the choices of cat litter
  • the problems with each type
  • and the evidence for which ones cats prefer
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What Is The Best Paralysis Tick Prevention?

newcastle dog park

Dog owners now have at least eight choices for treating and preventing paralysis ticks on dogs. The following represents my personal opinion on which ones are better.

Click here to find out more about paralysis ticks and whether you need tick prevention. However, the best way to know if you live in a tick area is to ask your local vet!

I travelled to just such a tick area. In 2020 I asked each person at Acacia Avenue Dog Park in Newcastle which tick treatment they were using. Here are their answers:

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How To Treat Chicken Scaly Leg Mite

chicken foot mite

A normal chicken’s leg is a thing of wonder: shiny, evenly spaced scales completely cover the leg and top of the foot, giving you the unmistakable reminder that chooks are really little pet dinosaurs.

You know a normal leg when you see one, but it’s harder to notice when it’s not. Scaly leg in chickens often goes unrecognised in flocks until it either gets bad, or you end up at the vet for another reason.

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Help! My Dog Has A Lump On The Face

dog face lump

Dogs can get all kinds of lumps and bumps, some serious, some not. That’s why I’ve previously written a guide to dog skin lumps with pictures. Just click on the picture to visit.

lumps on dogs
A gallery of dog lumps

However, there’s one very particular swelling that I haven’t talked about even though it’s important, common and easy to recognise.

It’s the tooth root abscess.

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The Best Age To Neuter A Dachshund

wire haired dachshund

If you own a Dachshund, you probably already know about IVDD.

Intervertebral Disc Disease affects around 20% of Dachies over their lives. All of them will experience severe pain. Many are permanently disabled and some even die as a result of irreversible and severe spinal damage.

Visit our page on IVDD if you want to read more. Here I want to talk about some new knowledge of a way to reduce the risk of it happening.

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Is Pet Insurance Worth It?

pet insurance satisfaction

Let me say this at the outset. I won’t treat your pet any differently whether you get pet insurance or not. What matters is that you get the information you need to make an informed decision.

So when Choice gave its ‘Shonky’ award to all pet insurance my first thought was, “that doesn’t ring true.” I get to talk to clients about their pet insurance every day. The experiences they describe go all the way from great to terrible and everything in between. Not just terrible.

It struck me that Choice’s view of pet insurance is from the outside. They’re not wrong (I’ll go through their statements below) but I think there are things that only users understand.

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Fact Check: Do LH Levels After Desexing Affect Health?

dog desexing problem

Have you ever wondered why vets recommend one drug over another?

We’ve usually researched it ourselves.

Or we have a wealth of first-hand experience.

However, sometimes the health claims are just too complex to easily assess. That’s when we might trust the company data. But how many vets have the time to double check what they say?

I’ve made a reputation as a ‘difficult’ customer, and I know I’m not alone. That’s because there’s often more than one way to look at the same data. Here’s just one example from the past week: a good product sold by nice people.

Just possibly pushed too far.

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