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AVA Annual Conference

Every May brings the Australian Veterinary Association Annual Conference and this year Gladesville is to supply two of our vets to speak on the conference program in May. Mark Hocking will be speaking on Trigger Point Therapy and some similarities and contrasts of this with acupuncture. He will also provide a hands on workshop for vets interested in learning how to recognise and treat trigger points that are causing pain and lameness in animals. Max Zuber will be presenting one talk giving advice to practitioners on the types of support they can obtain from veterinary faculties and the government Research and Development Tax Incentive scheme to encourage clinical research in animal diseases. Max has had considerable experience in this area particularly in respect to his work in nuclear medicine and he will also be doing a presentation on how nuclear [...]

“Is your dog on heartworm prevention?”

At one point or another, all dog owners have been asked by a vet or receptionist here at Gladesville Veterinary Hospital, “Is your dog on heartworm prevention?”   So why is heartworm prevention SO important? Heartworm disease is a serious and potentially fatal disease in dogs, caused by a worm called Dirofilaria immitis.   The disease is not spread directly from dog to dog.  An intermediate host, the mosquito, is required for transmission. If a mosquito bites an animal that is infected with heartworm and then bites your dog, heartworm infection can be transmitted.   In the immature stages larvae(microfilariae) are transmitted into the bloodstream by the bite of the mosquito and live mainly in small blood vessels. When fully developed, the worms move to the heart and pulmonary arteries where they mature and begin to  reproduce.   Left [...]

Glaucoma in Dogs & Cats

Glaucoma is an increase in pressure inside the eye. It is caused by many eye diseases and is due to obstruction of normal fluid drainage from inside the eye.   This leads to damage to the retina and optic nerve and very quickly leads to vision loss and then to irreversible blindness in dogs.   It is common in people and also in dogs … and less common in cats.   Glaucoma can be a primary problem or secondary to some other condition   affecting the eye.   Primary glaucoma is divided into closed angle and open angle glaucoma. Humans are mainly affected by open angle glaucoma but in dogs closed   angle glaucoma is 8 times more frequent than open angle.  Female dogs are also twice as likely to be affected.   Glaucoma is a breed-related inherited condition in dogs [...]

Keeping Children and Dogs Safe

Studies have found that children left  unsupervised with dogs are at a high risk of being involved in an incident. This was often found to be with family or known dogs, and many times followed harassment, inappropriate handling or accidental/deliberate stepping on the dog by the child.   Sometimes young children want to chastise dogs and copy owners who may discipline young active dogs. It is very, very important that all dogs see children as something fun and positive in their lives.   Children are great….   We can prevent dog bites and keep     children and dogs safe by acknowledging that firstly all dogs can bite when given some   specific circumstances.  There is a point where individuals can no longer   tolerate interaction.  Animals must be given space and opportunities to leave the interaction safely without having to warn the child, [...]

Ear Cleaning in Dogs

Ever wonder what is lurking beneath the floppy ears of your pooch? Dogs have L-shaped ear canals, making it very hard for moisture to get out and for air to get in.   The moist, warm environment in the  canal is one that bacteria and yeasts love to replicate in, causing dogs to be prone to ear infections (otitis).  Regular cleaning of a dog’s ear canals may reduce the frequency of otitis, especially in dogs that  frequently get ear infections or those that have narrow canals. It is important to be gentle and careful when cleaning dogs’ ears, and to use an appropriate cleaning solution.   Dogs that are prone to ear infections should have their ears cleaned weekly to fortnightly, as well as after swimming or baths.   In floppy eared dogs such as retrievers and spaniels, it [...]

Poisonous Plants

 Tulip (Tulip spp) - Ingestion can result in intense vomiting, depression, diarrhoea hypersalivation, drooling  and lack of appetite.Hyacinth (Hyacinthus oreintalis) - Ingestion can result in intense vomiting, diarrhoea, depression and   tremors.Daffodil (Narcissus spp) - Ingestion can result in severe  gastrointestinal illness, convulsions, seizures, low blood pressure and tremors.Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum spp) - Ingestion can result in ulcers in the mouth, vomiting and diarrhoea.Easter Cactus (Schlumbergera bridgesi) - Ingestion can result in vomiting, diarrhoea and depression. Cats can also develop staggering.Crown of Thorns (Euphorbia splendens prostrata) - Ingestion results in vomiting and diarrhoea.Azalea (Rhododendron spp) - Vomiting, diarrhoea, hypersalivation, weakness, coma, hypotension, central nervous system depression, cardiovascular collapse and death.Crocus (Colchicum autumnale) - Excessive salivation, abdominal pain, diarrhoea, vomiting, gastro-intestinal disorders, lack of appetite, tremors, convulsions, seizures.Rhododendron (Rhododendron spp) - Vomiting, diarrhoea, hypersalivation weakness, coma, hypotension, central nervous system depression, cardiovascular [...]

Ringworm

Ringworm is the common name for a skin infection caused by one of several Dermatophyte fungi. The name is misleading as the infection has got nothing to do with worms. Ringworm fungi can cause infection in many types of animals, including people, cats and dogs. The disease tends to show as reddish, scaly rings on the skin of people. Some infected animals (especially young cats) may show no skin lesions at all and others will have patches of dry scaly skin or other types of skin change. Most lesions that look like the classic human ringworm rings in animals are actually caused by Staphylococcus bacteria (“Hot Spots”). Ringworm is considered a zoonosis, as infection can be transmitted directly from animals to people. However, infection can also be spread from people to animals and both can catch the infection directly from [...]

Being Alex…

Our front of house kitty tells it like it is.......   You know, for the most part, things around here are pretty good.  I mean, I know I'm hard on these girls but I have to admit they do pretty well at tending to my needs.  But there are a few things that still need work around here.  For example, every evening, they insist on scooping me up from my comfy little corner and depositing me in my cage.  A cage, I tell you! Cages are for dogs, not for the likes of Me! I mean, really....what do they think I'm going to do out here overnight? Invite friends over or some wild party? Make a whole bunch of international calls?  Seriously, how much trouble do these people think I can cause, you know, with the lack of opposable thumbs [...]

Seasons Greetings

MERRY XMAS, HAPPY HANUKAH, HAPPY DIWALI !! Everyone in the GVH team would like to wish our clients and their pets the very best for the holiday season. Whether the year has been a good one for you and your family, or one with more challenges than you really needed, we feel privileged to have been able to share some special and meaningful times with you all.   At this time of year we pause to remember what is really important, and in our case a large part of that is of course the place of animals in our lives. We sincerely hope that this year we have been able to live up to the GVH commitment of caring for our patients with "compassionate hearts, gentle hands and kindly words".   Thank you to all of you who have helped [...]

Hot Summer = Hot Spots

"HOT SUMMER" = "HOT SPOTS" "Hotspots" are a familiar summer-time problem for many owners of long-haired dogs. A hotspot is basically a focal area of bacterial dermatitis. It occurs because the bacteria which normally live on the skin- the "normal flora"- are given better than usual conditions in which to grow. Given ideal conditions- at least from the "bacterial point of view", the normal flora ceases to be controlled by the defence mechanisms of the body, and start to grow out of control.   The result is an area of very inflamed, painful skin covered in pus and scabs. The two things that bacteria like best are warmth and moisture. Both these things are in good supply in an average Sydney summer, especially in the more humid months towards the end of summer or during periods of rain. The problem [...]

Help Your Pets Cope With Storms and Fireworks

As we come closer to Christmas and the New Year, it’s important to remember that our celebrations can have quite a negative impact upon our pets.  Christmas involves many changes in routine, parties, visitors and excessive noise in the neighbourhood.  Summertime also means a higher occurrence of thunderstorms.   New Years Eve can cause severe distress in our pets if they have a fear of fireworks.   Pets do not overcome their fear of noises or thunderstorms and most often the problem worsens with every exposure.  Products containing pheromones are available to help our cats and dogs cope with fear of fireworks. Pheromones are chemicals that animals use to communicate to one another.  There are many pheromones in the animal kingdom providing several different signals.   ADAPTIL™ (contains Dog Appeasing Pheromone) and Feliway® are synthetic copies of animals own natural pheromones [...]

Panoramis

PANORAMIS (spinosad + milbemycin oxime)Year-round parasite prevention is key to keeping your pet healthy and happy.  It's important to remember to protect your pet from parasites - which can be a difficult task given the number of parasites you need to worry about and all of the different medications needed to treat them. With that in mind, we'd like to tell you about Panoramis® (spinosad + milbemycin oxime) chewable tablets for dogs. Panoramis provides proven protection against fleas, heartworm, hookworm, roundworm and whipworm infections in one monthly beef-flavoured chewable tablet, which can't rub or wash off! Panoramis makes monthly treatment easy and convenient for you and your dog. Panoramis offers these benefits to you and your family:It's convenient - one tablet, once a month can protect your dog from fleas, heartworm disease and intestinal parasites (hookworm, roundworm & whipworm);It's effective - works [...]

Paralysis Ticks

At Gladesville we always see a number of tick paralysis cases each Summer, but this Spring we seem to have had more than we normally do, and they've presented to us earlier in the year than usual. Since it looks as though we might be in for a "bad" tick season, a reminder of what it's all about might be timely.   On a worldwide basis, the paralysis tick (Ixodes holocyclus) only occurs on the east coast of Australia. There are also two other species of tick that can potentially become attached to your dog or cat without causing paralysis. The paralysis tick injects two types of toxin into the animal, resulting in what is termed an ascending paralysis of the spinal cord. Early signs include a weakness or incoordination of the back legs, leading eventually to a complete inability [...]

Administering Medication to Your Cat

Often when we hand over a bottle of pills for a cat who is a little under the weather, we are confronted with an expression of dread on the part of an owner contemplating the prospect of having to actually administer those pills. We know what you're thinking: it's easy for us, after years of experience, to say "just do it". In fact, though, the vast majority of cats are quite easy to medicate, as long as you are privy to a few tricks of the trade.   PILLS [The following instructions apply to a right-handed person. Reverse the directions if you are left-handed]. Start by giving yourself an advantage: place the cat on a waist-high table, on a non-slip material. Position the cat facing towards your right. Hold the tablet between the thumb and index finger of your right [...]

Being Alex

Our front-of-house feline shares his thoughts on the challenges and responsibilities he is faced with on a day-to-day basis.   Oh dear, it's that time of the year again. When the usually sane humans (if there is such a thing) that I have to work with suddenly start to go a bit kooky. I swear it's all the sugar from the chocolates that we get around here at this time of the year. It's alright for them to gorge on them all day but when I ask for one measly little sweet, do you think they ever give it to me?? No! It's just rude I think.Anyway, in addition to that, they insist on putting silly things on me. This year, they tried to put a ridiculous feathery thing that looked like a dead bird on my head for that [...]

GVH Bitsa This, Bitsa That

COMINGS AND GOINGS   A quick update for you on a GVH staff change. Our very popular groomer Mel has unfortunately had to leave us, but for a very happy reason- she'll soon be adding to the "staff numbers" in her own family. Mel has been replaced by a new face, Diana, who has already settled in and is making good use of the clippers and shampoo. With Spring soon to be upon us, we're sure many of you will be making her acquaintance. Welcome, Diana. Max in his dog suit MOOCOOBOOLA GVH has once again participated in the annual Hunters Hill Moocooboola Festival, held on the first Sunday in August. This year there seemed to be even more exhibitors than usual, and since we were blessed with lovely weather the crowds also turned out in [...]

Want a Strepsil?

In this edition we will discuss coughing in our canine and feline companions.  Coughing can be quite a distressing symptom in our pets, and is probably uncomfortable and sometimes exhausting for them.  Dogs and cats can have anything from a dry hacking or soft cough to a more productive and moist cough.  Coughing occurs usually due to a problem in either the cardiovascular (heart and vessels) or respiratory (airways and lungs) systems.  We will consider the causes for coughing under these two systems.   Cardiovascular system Congestive Heart Failure In congestive heart failure (CHF), there is underlying cardiovascular dysfunction that means that the heart is not pumping blood or receiving blood from the lungs as efficiently as it should.  Often as a response to this, blood pressure in the lungs increases, leading to pulmonary hypertension.   Fluid accumulates in [...]

Mange in Dogs and Cats

“Mange” is a skin disease of dogs and cats which can is caused by several different species of mites. Diagnosis of a mite infection is generally obtained during a consultation with your veterinarian when a sample is taken to look at under the microscope. The following is an overview of the common species and their associated symptoms:   Demodectic Mange The Demodex mite lives and breeds deep in the hair follicles of dogs and cats and is actually a normal inhabitant when present in small numbers. Animals only develop symptoms of a mite infestation when they have immature or weakened immune systems and they cannot keep the mite population under control. Therefore, we typically see symptoms in young puppies and older animals with other systemic illnesses.Most animals affected by this mite are NOT itchy. They generally develop patchy areas of [...]

Creating a Cat Friendly Home…some helpful tips

Cats love to play and owners should dedicate at least 5 minutes twice a day to play with their feline friend. Chasing and pouncing are part of the way they can express their predatory behaviours, and an ideal toy for this type of activity are the fishing-pole-type toys with feathers on the end.   Cats also love to explore and it is a great idea to provide them with some opportunities for exploration, this can be achieved simply with cardboard boxes or paper bags. Cats also need to scratch…it’s a way to stretch their muscles, maintain their nails and communicate ownership.   Scratching posts provide a satisfying surface for cats to exercise this urge…a much better alternative than the curtains or furniture.   Cats love to have a place to escape and feel safe; a resting perch is ideal for this. [...]

Being Alex

Our front-of-house feline shares his thoughts on the challenges and responsibilities he is faced with on a day-to-day basis.     Today started like any other day.  I awoke in my chambers, was brought out to reception as per usual, went outside to the little boys’ room and then came back in to settle in one of my favourite spots behind the desk.  The girls have become quite obedient now. They leave the accounts book out for me to nap on so that the cold of the desk doesn’t seep into my poor old bones.  And most of them are quite gentle when they pull that beepy machine out from under me to press those buttons.    It’s taken years of persistence, really…..a nip on the elbow when they bump me out of my slumber……a little scratch when they drop a [...]