The One Thing Every Vet Wants You To Know

dog vet check

Looks don’t matter. I don’t mean that in a ‘politically correct’, ‘we shouldn’t be so superficial’ kind of way. I mean it quite literally: looks don’t matter to you.

How can I say that? It’s obvious that some animals are cuter and more adorable than other ones. A cute kitty gets through my defences every time and I’m always baby talking to puppies.

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Why I Hate Tennis Balls (And Dogs Love Them)

Tennis ball dog

For many dogs, the highlight of their day is a game of fetch with the ball. Who can resist? You’d have to have a heart like a stone to say no. Or, like me, to know too much.

Stay with me while I show you five ways that tennis balls were made in the devil’s workshop. Afterwards, I’ll tell you how your dog can still have that fun without the risk.

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How Much Do Dog Breeds Cost To Keep?

Ever wondered how much it costs to keep different dog breeds?

Recently I saw a very unfortunate case. The dog was barely 12 months old and had already had LOTS of vet visits. The owners were at their wits end both emotionally and financially. It didn’t help when I said; ” That’s not uncommon for the breed”.

“How were we supposed to know?” they said. I had to agree there wasn’t an easy way. There should be.

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How To Tell If Your Chicken Is Healthy

chicken health infographic

Most people can tell if a dog or cat is sick. It’s not too hard with ferrets either. All of these are predator species and have no reason to hide their illnesses.

Then there are the prey species, like rabbits, guinea pigs and birds. They deliberately hide signs of illness. They even pretend to eat! Most of the time what looks like ‘sudden death’ or a ‘heart attack’ is really the end of a long, slow illness we couldn’t see.

The good news is that you can tell. Here’s what to look for:

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20 Good Family Dog Breeds For Kids

Dogs for children

When I wrote an article about reducing the risk of dogs biting children I avoided discussing the elephant in the room. It’s time to face facts.

The truth is that all dog breeds are not the same around kids. You know it, I know it, but it’s hard to talk about without offending dog owners. However, if I don’t create a list of good dogs with kids, where will responsible parents in Adelaide find that information?

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The New Laws For Dogs & Cats

UPDATE 2018

In July, 2018 the new laws for dogs and cats came into force. You can read the details by following the link.

Although it will not be universally popular, the move towards universal desexing and microchipping of dogs and cats should produce a clear net benefit to pets and the community.

Regarding the concerns I raised below back in 2016, most have been addressed satisfactorily:

  • Vets can only give temporary exemptions
  • Guard dogs and remote communities are not specifically exempted
  • Breeding standards are already law and now breeders must also be registered, making the removal of rogue operators easier

However:

  • I’m yet to be convinced of the benefit of cat owners being asked to register their cats. Most owned cats have no harmful effect on communities or councils. There are existing laws on the removal of unidentified stray cats that function perfectly well.
  • Compulsory microchipping and desexing are an excellent idea for all cats, but the existing databases you already pay for are still necessary, and in my opinion, all that is needed.
  • You can still buy puppies at Adelaide pet shops from interstate puppy farms.
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Update On The Rabbit Calicivirus Outbreak

rabbit calicivirus vaccination

Update 2018:

To those who love rabbits it’s been a tough few years.

On the 24th of February, 2016 we were notified that the new strain of Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease Virus called RHDV2 had reached South Australia and was causing deaths around Adelaide.

We posted an alert on our Facebook page, and only then did the true horror of what was happening become clear.

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Vets, Stress and Suicide

vet stress suicide

There’s suddenly a lot of talk about the suicide rate in vets, thanks to a new study from the USA. It’s re-opened an important conversation, but I believe also created a lot of misinformation.

For example, I saw one vet say it was because of bad debts and emotional blackmail by pet owners. That’s clearly just his experience. So here’s the evidence we have for what’s going wrong, and my suggestions for fixing it.

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Dog Rescue Scam Foiled By Dr Sky

puppy rescue scam

It’s unlikely there will be enough information to catch these people. We need you to help. We also need you to be aware of what they are doing.

Our rescue puppy
Our rescue puppy Arkie

That’s Arkie above. He was found wandering the streets near Walkerville Vet and brought to us, as are so many other stray pets. Usually all we do is scan their microchip and make a phone call to reunite them with their owners.

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Myth 7: If it is sold for pets, it must be safe

pet treat recall

Update 2018: visit this page for details on the ongoing Senate inquiry into pet food safety.

Perhaps the biggest scandal of pet ownership in Australia is that there is no independent monitoring, testing or licensing of pet food products, and nowhere to turn when they cause harm. And equally shocking to vets is that it is easier to buy flea control products that are neither safe or effective than it is to buy good ones.

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