Common Questions From Our Customers

Why is my animal so itchy all of the time?

Lots of things make animals itch. The number one culprit is the flea! If your pet isn’t current on flea preventive or is particularly sensitive to fleas, this can cause severe itching and discomfort and sometimes you won’t even see the little things!! Often the issue goes beyond fleas and involves food or environmental allergies. To determine the real cause of the problem it is recommended you speak to your vet. They can perform small skin tests to figure out the cause and start a plan of action

My cat sees the carrier and runs and hides! What can I do to reduce the anxiety surrounding his carrier?

This is a common trend with cats, they see the carrier and they bolt. Then you spend the better part of an hour looking for puss while watching the clock knowing the vet appointment is just about passed. A way to avoid this is rather simple, incorporate your cat’s carrier into his/her home environment. Instead of bringing out their carrier at the time it is needed, leave the door off the carrier and place it in area where the cat is comfortable. ie Cat climber, next to food bowls or their bed. This helps teach the cat the carrier is a OK. That it is a safe place to be. The next time you need a trip to the vet it’s guaranteed the carrier issue is no longer.

I need to update my animals microchip details. How do I do this?

If you move house or change your telephone contact it is very important to update your pet’s microchip details as soon as possible. Your local vet hospital can provide you with the appropriate paperwork to be filled out and posted to your local council. Alternatively if you just want to check the details are all correct, call the hospital with your pet’s microchip number and the friendly staff can look up the details on the companion animal registry. This is a search engine only, details can not be updated.

Do I need an appointment get prescription medication ?

If it is a new occurrence then yes, we will need to examine your pet. The most important concern is your pet’s welfare therefore an examination is necessary in determining the best path and treatment for your pet.  Most drugs have legal restrictions on their supply and a consultation is be required by law before they can be dispensed. If your pet has a reoccurring problem and is seen regularly, no longer than a 6 month period between consultations, then under most circumstances we are able to rescript the appropriate medications. To save yourself time and to prevent misunderstandings please phone with your request before coming to the clinic.

Why does my pet need a blood test before surgery?

At Vetmed we work at the highest standard of care and we strongly believe performing a preanaesthetic blood test for animals who are undergoing a general Anaesthetic is meeting that standard. All animals receive a full physical exam during their surgical stay, but a preanaesthetic blood test gives us a much more detailed look into your animal’s health by showing us any underlying disease processes that may be present but not obvious. We are predominantly looking at kidney and liver function as these are the two main organs that process the anaesthetic drugs. Any hidden problems can therefore be detected before surgery. Blood testing also gives us a baseline reading so if there are any future problems with your pet, we have information with which to compare current results.

I found a stray animal, what should I do?

If you have come across a stray animal and have tried to find it’s owner unsuccessfully, the best thing to do is take this animal to the closest veterinary hospital . That way his microchip can be scanned for his family’s contact details and they can be reunited. In the unfortunate event the animal is not microchipped or the contact details are not up to date the animal will be transported to the pound where pet owners more commonly know to search for their missing animals.

My dog has bad doggy breath. What can I do?

A lot of times plaque is the culprit in causing your pets smelly breath. Brushing your dogs teeth regularly, add dental diet food and making sure they have plenty of bones will help to get rid of that yucky doggie breath. Plus, an annual visit to the vet for a proper dental teeth clean will help to ensure your dog has not only great smelling breath, but also healthy teeth and gums! Yep, pets should have a regular visit to the pet dentist too and the vet!  

How can I get my dog to take its tablet?

Dogs are not silly, they can smell tablets and won’t just eat them out of your hand like it is a treat. Try breaking the tablets up and mixing in with their dog food. You can also try placing the broken pieces inside a piece of soft cheese, sausage even pate works. Some dogs will try and hide the pill in their mouth then spit them out, so watch them for a minute or so to make sure the pill has been swallowed. If your dog will not eat the broken tablets in any type of food, place the tablet on the very back of the dogs mouth and hold the dogs mouth shut until they swallow the tablet.

How do I give my dog medicine that is liquid?

If you are on your own, it is best to try using a syringe (without the needle – your local vet can provide you with one). Hold the dogs mouth closed and insert the syringe in through the side of the mouth. If you have someone to help you, keep the mouth closed with one hand, with the nose facing upward, and with the other hand open the lower jaw. Then someone can inject into the mouth. Tickle the adams apple or block nose and your dog will swollow

How do I put eardrops in my dog's ear effectively?

If your dog is sitting, the liquid will penetrate the ear much better. So get your dog to sit down then pull his/her ear up and place the ear drops in the ear. Your dog will usually try to shake it’s head, so try giving a massage on the base of the ear to distract them, they love it!

What breed of dog should I buy?

Take the size of your house or apartment into account when you are choosing what breed of dog you want. There are also many other things to consider, energy levels, malting, barking, anxiety etc. Come in for a free Nurse Consultation if you are having trouble deciding the right breed for you.

What do I need to consider before I buy a dog?

Before you commit to owning a dog, make sure that you have enough time to dedicate to its training and upbringing. Puppies are cute and cuddly, but they grow into dogs who need to be exercised, they also require lots of love and attention. Plus, during puppy stage they need to be fed multiple times during a day and let out of the house several times for potty breaks. Also consider the costs, both initial and ongoing. You’ll need to take your young pup for vaccinations and annual exams. All dogs are a big commitment, but they have excellent health benefits for the family such as improving fitness and providing company.

Should my cat have an annual check up?

Definitely! Cats age approximately 5 years to 1 human year, so annual check ups for cats are like us going to doctor once every 5 years. Vaccinations are also important to your cat’s health. All cats, even indoor cats, need to be vaccinated every 1 to 3 years depending on their risk of catching disease. Viruses can travel through the air or, they can even be brought into your house on people’s hands or clothing. Then there’s the risk of an indoor cat getting out, or, that a disease-carrying cat may wander into your yard or house.

Should my dog have an annual check up?

Yes. Dogs age a lot faster than humans, so annual check ups for dogs are like us going to doctor once every few years. Dogs need regular vaccinations. There are different options available when vaccinating your dog. Some vaccinations like Kennel Cough for example need to be done annually, where as others like parvo virus and distemper virus vaccinations are available in yearly or 3 yearly applications. You may also need a blood test or some other type of treatment for you dog. Your vet will help you decide on the right and preventative treatments for your pet.

How do I know what Flea treatment is good for my dog or cat?

There are plenty of good flea treatments available for your pets. If your cat or dog doesn’t respond well to tablets, you can use the flea products where you place it on the back of your pets neck. The best idea is to speak to your vet to get the right advice. Also remember to treat all pets and the environment as this is where fleas breed. For cats, avoid flea products containing permethrins as they are very toxic to cats.

Should I give my new puppy toys to chew?

Give your new puppy some toys to chew. All puppies like to chew things. This is normal behaviour and also helps teething. A few different toys for your new puppy are a good idea, as different chew toys do different things, and your dog won’t get bored. You can get teething toys, toys where you can place treats inside so they have to problem solve to get to the treats, rope toys etc. Ask your local vet or pet store for some chew toys and they will be able to help you pick the right size for your new pup.

How do I remove a tick from a dog or cat?

Put a good size dollop of Vaseline onto and around the tick. Let this sit for about ten minutes. The tick will loosen his hold to get air, then you can simply wipe it away with a tissue. Another good way to remove them is to use open scissors or a fork to push sideways at base of tick. This will push tick out with the head attached Remember: Don’t use a hot needle or any other instrument that will cause the tick to panic. The tick tends to regurgitate what it has injected back into the host. This can be as bad as leaving the tick in. Any disease the tick carries can be transmitted to your pet. Pull tick up with tweezers as this leaves the head imbedded and cause a local reaction.

What is Hip Dysplasia and what breeds does it affect?

Hip Dysplasia causes debilitating arthritis due to loose hips from an early age. It affects all giant and large breeds including Labradors, Golden Retrievers, German Shepherds, Standard Poodles, Rottweilers and Great Danes, and all cross breeds of the above.

Can Hip Dysplasia be detected at a young age and why is this better for my dog?

Hip Dysplasia can be diagnosed with a simple PennHIP x-ray from as young as 16 weeks of age. By detecting at this early age, Hip Dysplasia can be prevented. Early diagnosis (16 to 20 weeks of age) means a simple operation called Juvenile Pubic Symphysodesis (JPS) can be performed to “tighten” the hip joints and reduce the chance of arthritis later in life. VetMed will also help you to ensure your dog has strict weight control and will put your dog onto the right diet and supplements that may include Omega 3 Oils for example.

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