Well, its Spring and there are a few things I thought I would mention that you should note to help minimise the risk of mayhem as things get more hectic in your pets life.
First up, September is “Dental Health Month” at the Lennox Head Vet Clinic. Yay! Dental disease is one of the main reasons we administer anaesthetics to pets in this area. A high proportion of cats and dogs from about 3 years of age have significant dental disease that if left unchecked can cause a variety of issues, some even life-threatening!
First up is halitosis (bad breath) and gum disease that can be unpleasant for any bystanders getting a whiff, as well as painful for the pets with ongoing gingivitis (gum inflammation). If left unchecked, gingivitis can lead to more severe changes to the tooth and its surrounding structures (periodontal disease) leading to pain, loss of teeth, inability to eat properly, and temperament changes. Periodontal disease also will cause general ill-health due to constant absorption of bacterial toxins, and has the potential to cause serious kidney, lung and heart disease as bacteria shower into the bloodstream and settle in capillary beds around the body.
As a special bit of encouragement, the clinic is offering free Dental checks by our nursing staff to assess whether your pet needs attention in the tooth department. The nurses can also recommend various regimes that can minimise the risk of ongoing disease and hopefully avoid any elaborate (or expensive) intervention. Just make an appointment to see one of our nurses and we are happy to set your pet on the path to a Hollywood smile and better well being.
Secondly, its Tick-season, right now! Again! If you don’t have your pets on tick prevention and they get where ticks are prevalent (i.e. just about anywhere there’s bush or undergrowth) then theres a good chance they’re going to get bitten by a tick and run the risk of life-threatening tick-paralysis. Tick-paralysis is one of the most devastating illnesses that can affect Australian pets and its well worth avoiding.
In dogs there are several topical or spot-on preparations that are approved and effective for tick control. These need to be applied at least every 2 weeks! Most of these will also help control fleas. There is also a new tick-collar for dogs that gives effective tick protection for 3 months and is water resistant to boot…perfect for the coast! And its inexpensive…brilliant! For cats there are no officially approved tick control products, however Frontline or its equivalent can be used off-label every 2 weeks at least to provide protection. Other products safe for dogs will kill cats. And remember no product is guaranteed…you must search vulnerable pets every day just in case.
If you have any questions about any of the above, please call the Vet clinic and our friendly staff will be happy to help.
Cheers for now, Dr Evan Kosack.