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My cat is missing

We have put together a guide to help owners with lost cats. Whilst it is not a guaranteed way to find your missing cat, we have found that a lot of these tips have had some success.

A lost cat is one of the most heartbreaking things a pet owner can experience. Unfortunately having an outdoor cat will always carry the risk of kitty not returning home and going missing regardless of what precautions you take (a safety-release collar with your phone number is aways a good idea to have on an outdoor cat).

Having a completely indoor cat does not also guarantee that your cat may never go missing – indoor cats are still prone to running out of an open window or door! For most cases, particularly for indoor cats, the missing cat is hiding somewhere very close to home so it is a good idea to regularly do a scan of your immediate area (look under nooks and crannies and other small places where your cat may have become trapped)

Tips to help find your cat:

An example of a ‘Missing Flyer’ used by one of our staff members who was luckily enough to have been reunited with her missing cat after more than a month!

These tips are based on real success stories (the sooner you are able to carry out the suggestions the higher your chance of finding your cat).

  • Set up a litter tray with some used litter from your cat around the entry points of your home.
  • Set up a food bowl with your cat’s favourite treats (preferably ones with a strong scent such as roast chicken or sardines) around your home.
  • Rent a humane cat trapper from your local vet or purchase one from Bunnings. Set up the trapper near your home and cover it with your cat’s towel/blanket and bait it your cat’s favourite food (again try to use foods with strong scents). It is important you check the trapper at least twice a day to ensure you don’t accidentally catch someone else’s cat! And also to change the food regularly.
  • Print as many Missing flyers as you can and drop them in your neighbours’ mailboxes (try to cover as many houses as possible, a block is a good minimum)
  • Put up as many Missing Flyers as you can on telephone poles (again around your block is a good minimum). You may find some people tearing them down, it is important to keep putting them up again to gain as much visible coverage as possible.
  • Post about your missing cat on as many Facebook Lost Pet Groups as possible.
  • Go out late in the night when it is most quiet with roast chicken and call out for your cat.
  • Call your usual vet and notify them of your lost cat, ask them to change your cat’s microchip status from ‘home’ to ‘missing’.
  • Call all your local vets to notify them of your lost cat and provide them with a detailed description as well as your contact details.
  • Contact your local pounds to notify them of your lost cat in case it has been impounded (which is usually the case if not chipped)

There are cases of people being reunited with pets that have been missing for more than a year!

Whilst it is easy to lose hope of ever seeing your cat again it is important to remember to not give up. Our own staff member Beatrice had found her lost cat after more than a month of searching, she followed all of the points we have provided and her eventual success was the result of a letter box drop.

We also post ‘Missing Cat’ posters on our clinic window and on our Facebook page so please feel free to email us your flyers if your cat is missing.

Once you do find your cat make sure you book a visit to your usual vet ASAP for a general heath check.

Tick Season

We had our first paralysis tick patient last week. A little poodle had just returned from a trip to the bush when his owner noticed a paralysis tick on his ear!

 

Ticks aren’t always immediately visibly, they can be in hidden places such as in between your pet’s toes.

His owner was vigilant and kept up to date with his flea and worming treatment however not all flea products protect against ticks.  Luckily his mum did the right thing and brought him to us straight away with the tick she managed to pull off for identification.

 

We have also had a couple of clients report to us that they have seen ticks around their yards! Warmer weather is definitely tick season and if you plan on going to any bush area with your four-legged friend it is important to confirm that the parasite protection you are using includes ticks.

Cats are also susceptible to ticks so be cautious if your feline goes outdoors or in particular has access to overgrown, leafy areas.

 

We stock a couple of products that protect cats and dogs against ticks so if you have any doubts feel free to drop by our clinic or call us for a chat.

If you would like more information on ticks, what symptoms to look out for in particular and what to do you can read on here

New Anaesthetic Machine!

We can now keep our small patients warmer (& safer) than ever during their anaesthetics.

Meet our new anaesthetic machine: not just a pointless bit of technology!

A) This is a special low resistance carbon dioxide scrubber, this allows us to run a re-breathing circuit for animals down to 2 kg (previously 10 kg was the lowest we could go). B) This is the attached heating circuit.

When our patients are under anaesthetic it’s very important to stop them getting cold which can slow their recovery and healing but the smaller they are the harder it is to avoid them getting cold.  Now not only are they lying on a hot water bed, our new anaesthetic machine helps keep them warm.

On a non re-breathing system a patient is getting a constant flow of fresh, COLD oxygen to breath. But on a re-breathing system only a small amount of fresh cold oxygen is included in each breath.

When you add a heating device to warm the air then you make a real difference to their body temperature during an anaesthetic.  They recover faster and their anaesthetics are more stable, perfect for the little oldies.

Add to that a hot air blanket that we can cover them with if needed and you’re talking toasty warm cats & dogs.

Help! I found a stray kitten

Almost everyday we get phone calls from people who have found themselves in possession of a little stray kitten – or sometimes even a litter of stray kittens!

Unfortunately due to the number of stray cat colonies around Sydney there is always an abundance of homeless kittens. Despite the good intentions of the community to Trap-N-Release (TNR), this problem will not disappear anytime soon.

As such, we have made a guide to ensure the best outcome for the kittens.

Stray kitten(s) with a mother

McShooty and Stevie were our ex-adoption kittens. They were strays who had a feral mother who is part of a community TnR & feeding program.

If you have encountered stray kittens that are still being attended to by their mother please make sure NOT to separate them! You should contact any reputable rescue group to organise a TNR. This allows the mother cat and her kittens to be taken off the streets for appropriate treatment. For the mother cat that usually means being desexed to prevent future stray litters. Depending on the nature of the cat and her kittens it is most likely the rescue group will attempt to re-home them however if the mother is extremely aggressive and hence unable to rehome then she will most likely be released back to where she is found once she is desexed and treated for any existing medical conditions.

Stray kitten(s) without any signs of a mother

Kittens that are alone are not necessarily without their mother- sometimes they can appear to be abandoned but in reality their mother is out gathering food or in the process of relocating her litter. To avoid making the mistake of separating a kitten from their mum, try to stick around (out of sight to avoid frightening them) and observe for a while to see if the mother does return.

If this is a case of no mother cat being present then you should aim to safely trap the stray kittens and bring them to their nearest vet*, the vet protocol from here on is to scan the kittens in case they have any microchips (if they are chipped then they would most likely have a home and are probably lost).

If the kittens are not microchipped and are clearly not a missing pet then it is up to the vet on what needs to be done next.

A litter of 3 ex-adoption kittens (Chandler, Ross and Joey) we had taken on from another clinic to rehome.

Vet clinics are not rescue groups, hence are not always able to hold-onto and rehome stray animals- this is because most smaller clinics only have the capacity and resources for hospital patients. Sometimes however, and this is the case for our clinic- the vet will have the availability to rehome the stray kittens in which case they will take them off your hands and handle all treatment and later adoption.

If the vet advises you that they are unable to keep the kittens you’re next best options are to either:

a) contact reputable rescue groups (there is a list of them and their contact details at the end of this post).

b) foster the kittens yourself and handle the rehoming (if you do decide to foster/keep the kittens you can read our Kitten Care handout for information on owning and caring for kittens) – if you do end up fostering the kittens you can talk to our staff about receiving discount rescue rates for all their treatment (that is only if you are not intending to keep them as your own pet and are definitely adopting them out)

c) contact other nearby vets- just because one vet does not have the space, that does not mean other clinics do not. We have previously taken on stray litters from other clinics who were unable to.

List of Cat Rescue Groups in Sydney:

The Importance of Spaying and Neutering Your Pet

Petting a dog or cat is not only about caring for them or feeding them. You can fall in love with them and treat them exactly like one of your family members. However, you also need to invest some time in thinking about their health concerns and benefits they are likely to get from your care. That’s where the importance of spaying and neutering your pet comes into play.

Spaying and neutering pets not only helps with population control, but it can further restrict general disorders and behavioural problems. You can get this procedure done at Summer Hill Village Vet at an affordable rate with minimum maintenance.

Spaying is a surgical procedure of removing the ovaries of your female pet that requires minimal hospitalization and unlimited health benefits. On the other hand, neutering is the process of removing the testicles of a male dog or cat which will benefit their health and potentially improve their behaviour. Read on to know more about the importance of spaying and neutering your cat or dog at Summer Hill Village Vet.

Medical benefits of Spaying and Neutering

  • Longer and Healthier life of your female pet: Spaying prevents uterine diseases and breast cancer, which is lethal in approximately 90 percent of cats and 50 percent of dogs. You can get the best protection from these diseases by spaying your pet before her first heat. You can get this done from Summer Hill Village Vet to minimise the hospitalisation.
  • It helps your male dog stay close to you: Neutering your male dog will prevent him from going outside and finding his mate. This poses a threat to his life from traffic and other dangers. Therefore, it is recommended to neuter your male dog as soon as possible to make him stay close to you and remain safe and not running away or causing trouble.
  • Your male dog will behave in a better way: Your unneutered pet is more likely to roam around the house and cause issues. Neutering your male dog will help him calm down and stay in one place. He will not feel like loitering. After your male dog has been neutered, you will observe that he is less likely to mount on unidentified objects which will lower the risk of infection.

 So if you are someone who treats their pets as a family, you need to take care of all these health issues as well.

Do Dogs Smile? Understanding Pet Facial Expressions

Facial expressions are as much important integral aspect of the social behaviour of other animals as they are to humans. Each facial expression of your furry friend carries meaning, and it takes some understanding to figure it out with pin-point accuracy. Dogs, being the most common pets in human society, grab more attention than other animals with their facial expressions.

Dogs are often referred to as humanised animals that are capable of picking up human emotions. Is the other way around equally true? It depends on how accurately a person reads their pets body language and facial expressions of. Unfortunately, only a handful of people understand how to do this with finesse.

The fact that dogs are able to emote themselves, beggars a pertinent question – do dogs smile? The vet care specialists from Summer Hill Village Vet believe they do.

How To Find Out When Your Dog Smiles?

Unlike humans, who utilise their facial expressions to communicate their thoughts and feelings, animals depend on their body language to communicate via non-verbal communication. An important element of a dog’s communication to its master includes facial expression, tail carriage, the position of its ear, and, of course, its posture.

  • A slightly opened mouth with perked ears and a relaxed tail is indicative of a relaxed mood and a friendly demeanour.
  • On the other hand, pinned back ears, low body, and a tucked tail add up to the fact that the man’s best friend is in a fearful mood.

How can one find out whether a dog is smiling or not? According to the caretakers of dogs at Summer Hill Village Vet it solely depends on how a canine is feeling at a given point in time. Dogs are likely to smile when they are happy or in a relaxed frame of mind. You weren’t wrong if you felt that your pet friend was smiling at you when you found it in this sort of mental state.

Now that you know how to find your pet canine in a happy mood, ensure that you complement it duly in a natural way to reciprocate its emotion.

What to Expect Before, During, and After a Pet Dental Cleaning

A pet’s dental cleaning is very important so as to maintain hygiene and avoid any future dental issues. Many pets suffer from toothaches or mouth related issues after the age of 3. This can make them irritable and may impact other organs too. Regular cleanings at home are essential but professional examinations are just as important.

It is advised to take your pet to the nearest dental clinic for a checkup and other cleaning purposes. Summerhill Village Vet Clinic Australia offers the best dental care services for animals. This article will explain what to expect before, during and after a pet’s dental cleaning.

Preparing for Dental Cleaning (Before):

Visit your veterinarian and ask them if your pet is fit enough for a dental cleaning process. They may check your pet’s heart rate among other things. Before giving the anaesthesia, any abnormalities should be checked. Your pet should not be given any food or water 12 hours before this process so as to avoid vomiting during the process.

Also, ask your veterinarian in if your pet needs any antibiotics prior to the cleaning. Some dogs who suffer from serious illness need antibiotic treatment a week before dental cleaning.

At the Time of the Cleaning Process (During):

If you are wondering what the veterinarian does during this process, they start by testing your pet’s health condition. After this, it’s time for the anaesthesia. A large chunk of tartar that gets accumulated on the teeth is removed and any infections in the mouth will be examined and treated.

Additionally, your pet’s teeth should get polished after all of the removals.

Post Clean (After):

The most important concern after dental treatment is when to resume your pets’ regular diet. You should start your furry friends diet 12 to 48 hours after the process has been completed. You can ask Summerhill Village Vet Clinic about what specific diet would be ideal for him and if there are any specific medicines your pet might benefit from.

It is advised that you give soft food to your pet. Even liquid diets would be preferable. It is also advised not to brush your pets teeth for a few weeks after the clean as it can be tender and there’s really no need.

Conclusion:

So these were some of the things you should do for your beloved pet after he gets a painful treatment done. Above all this, your love and care are expected the most. Summerhill Village Vet offers the utmost care for your pet and also offers consultants if you have any doubts. You can consult them for the best treatment.

Pet Emergency Care in Veterinary Hospitals

As a pet owner, you must be familiar with vets and their veterinarian clinics. However, vet hospitals are very different from veterinary clinics. Vet hospitals are generally much more prepped and equipped to deal with emergent situations pertaining to your pets.

So, in a regular situation under a controlled setting, you may opt to visit a veterinarian clinic. However, a vet hospital becomes a preferred choice under unforeseen and sensitive situations where immediate attention is needed.

At a typical vet hospital, pet emergencies are taken much more seriously with a sense of urgency. They are prepped beforehand to deal with the demanding situation. They strive to be well-equipped with materials, instruments, and staff to better fulfill the needs of the situation.

This post is aimed at creating more awareness about veterinary hospitals and their services.

Facilities at Veterinarian Hospitals

The knowledge of what services you can avail for your pet is always good to obtain beforehand. Pet parents can benefit greatly from such insights. The following are some services offered at vet hospitals that you need to know about beforehand:

1. Tests for Diagnosis:

Veterinary hospitals are well geared with their testing equipment such as X-rays and diagnostic centres. A versatile vet hospital has an array of machinery to suit different types and breeds of pets. Ranging from in-depth brain scanning to detailed x-rays, pet hospitals are set in place to meet the need of the hour

2. Surgery:

Having this facility saves lives to a great extent. A vet hospital houses a professional fleet of veterinary surgeons that work round the clock and are experts at it. Summer Hill Village Vet will be well-suited to meet such emergencies.

3. Round The Clock Care:

Veterinary clinics get a limited time to function. However, hospitals are bound by no such timelines. They function 24×7, providing stellar medical facilities to all pets and breeds alike. Vet clinics have their set hours where they consult and create a diagnosis.

As a pet parent, it is your responsibility to be aware of all the veterinary services around you. Emergencies come unannounced and all you can do is be best prepared for them. You should check with your local vet hospitals and clinic to know exactly which service is offered where. It is always advisable to keep your preparation strong, so at times of emergencies, you don’t fret.

ADVOCATE 25% Off Parasite Protection!

From September the 3rd 2018, we are offering 25% off ALL Advocate 6-pack products purchased from our clinic. So now is a better time than any to brush up on your pet’s flea, tick and worm protection.

Prevention is always better (and cheaper!) than treatment especially when it comes to parasites. Take for example a simple flea infestation- fleas can easily transmit worms to your pet which can then snowball into a range of serious health issues. As an inner-west veterinary clinic we find that a lot of pet owners have the common misconception that they don’t need to worry about parasite control because of the urban environment. Your dog or cat can easily get fleas whilst they are out on walks, visiting the park or from coming into contact with other animals.

How do I know which product is best for my pet?

With the massive range of parasite prevention products available, it can be hard to decide which product is
appropriate for your furry friend. The type of parasite protection your pet needs depends on a lot of factors- living conditions, holiday trips, contact with other animals, method of dispensing (oral vs topical) and etc. Our vets are more than happy to have a chat with you and help you find out what kind of coverage best suits your pet’s lifestyle.

If you’d like to do a little research first here are some helpful handouts

How will my pet and I benefit from the 25% off Advocate promo?

The promotion we are running is only for the Advocate Topical parasite treatment when purchased in a 6-pack. The tables below show the range of parasites covered by Advocate Spot-On in cats and dogs. After discussing your pet’s situation with your vet you can decide based on the below charts whether Advocate is the best choice for your cat or dog.

Advocate Topical Dog coverage chart

Advocate Topical Cat coverage chart