surgery-101

The Greenwood Veterinary Clinic is able to perform most surgical procedures that can be undertaken by vets in General Practice. Surgery is either performed in our treatment room, or more advanced procedures are undertaken in the Sterile Theatre.

General Surgery includes procedures like Lump Removals, Abscess Drainage, Tooth Removals and Suturing of Wounds. All surgeries are performed using sterile equipment, sterile gloves, sterile drapes and a proper surgical preparation, in order to reduce the risk of infection and complications.

The sterile surgical theatre is used for any abdominal surgery, including sterilisations.

dental-care

Dogs and Cats do best when eating a meat based diet and have teeth that have evolved to help them hunt and eat meat. In order to eat well, they need to be able to eat in comfort. Also, the mouth is one of the few barriers where the body is open to infection or insult. For this reason, it is important to keep this part of the body as healthy as possible, keeping foreign matter like plaque and tartar and infection under control.

There are many ways that you can help to keep your pet’s mouth healthy at home. Your pet’s teeth and gums can be kept cleaner for longer by brushing them with special enzyme enhanced, flavored toothpaste or cleansing gels. Feeding RAW chicken necks or wings in smaller dogs, or lamb necks and larger meaty bones in larger dogs can sometimes help. There are also Chew toys designed to help keep the teeth clean. For those difficult to medicate pets, there are mouthwashes like “Healthy Mouth” which you can add to the drinking bowl, or a powder like “Plaque Off”, which you can add to the food.

Some foods have been designed to help keep teeth cleaner and healthier. One such diet is Hill’s T/d diet, or Tooth diet. This is a dry food which has been specially designed to clean your pet’s teeth as they eat. It is available for dogs and cats. Another such diet is the Eukanuba dry food biscuits (for dogs and cats) which now include the dental defence system which helps reduce plaque and tartar buildup on teeth both during and after meals.

If you have any queries about dental care, then speak to the nurses who could give you a quick evaluation of your pets oral hygiene. Sometimes, in more severe cases, the only way to get your pet’s teeth clean is to undergo a full scale and polish under a general anaesthetic.

snake-bite

Perth’s beautiful bushland corridors and lakes provide a haven for all wildlife including snakes. Perth snakes tend to be shy Dugites, Gwardars and Tiger snakes and prefer to avoid confrontation, however when attacked, bitten, chased or disturbed by an inquisitive dog and cat they can inflict a lethal bite.

Signs of snake bite can be subtle at first and can progress with devastating rapidity to complete paralysis and an inability to breathe which is the most common cause of death in animals. Additionally, snake venom may stop the blood clotting causing internal bleeding and with tiger snakes bites severe muscle damage also occurs.

If you see your pet in close contact with a snake it is important that you immediately phone your regular veterinarian or an emergency service to inform them that you are coming down with a potential snake bite patient and if necessary obtain first aid advice. If your dog is small enough carry it to the car as activity accelerates the spread of the toxin.

Always take your pet to the vet immediately, while trying to keep it calm. Do not take a wait and see approach and don’t waste time looking for the bite as it is rare to be able to find bites in dogs and cats.

If the snake is dead, carefully pick it up with a shovel to take it to the vet(in a bucket helps). However, do not attempt to kill or catch live snakes (which are protected species). If necessary, Veterinarians can run tests to determine the best type of antivenom to use and we don’t want to have to deal with envenomated humans as well!

Keeping dogs on a lead when walking in bushland, preventing cats from wandering, having well-mowed lawns and ensuring there are no piles of rubble near the house, can all help prevent pets and snakes coming into close contact.

featured-grooming

For many pet owners, watching your cat or dog grow older is a comforting and natural experience. It is often hard to believe the same bundle of energy that tore up the backyard or the curtains, is now the calm and kind old friend curled up on your couch. When your pet begins to slow down or stiffen up, they need your help and understanding. Unlike a fellow human, pets can’t take responsibility for their own care, they depend on you!

How old is your pet? Age varies according to species, breed, body size and individual variation. Large breed dogs age quicker than smaller dogs. Typically a cat reaches their senior years at about 8 years, small dogs at age 7, and large breed dogs at 5 or 6.

How does ageing affect older pets? As a cat or dog ages, two common changes can occur. The first is age-related changes such as hearing loss, changes in vision or reduced activity. These are normal and cannot be prevented. The second kind is related to what we would class as disease. Commonly this would include heart disease, liver disease, kidney disease, arthritis or dental disease. Often, these types of diseases can start to develop slowly, so we often make excuses or allowances for our pets getting old and miss the warning signs. The signs to look out for can include things like weight gain or loss, changes in water intake or urine output, smelly breath or difficulty chewing, increase or decrease in appetite and changes in activity levels or sleeping more than normal.

Many of these diseases require proper evaluation and diagnosis. Here at the Greenwood Vet Clinic we routinely perform x-rays, blood tests, ultrasounds and ECGs which can be used to help to evaluate your pet’s health. Pets who are experiencing signs of older age, or who have to take some medications on an on-going basis, should have a regular check-up and blood test to assess their progress through their older years.

What if my dog or cat isn’t a senior? The healthcare that cats and dogs receive during their lifetime can often help prevent or defer the onset of disease as they age. This can include preventative health care, appropriate exercise, dental care, regular visits to the vet and eating a balanced diet in the correct portions.