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It’s that time of year for Easter Eggs

With the Easter Weekend soon approaching, we want you and your pet to have a HOPPY EASTER and therefore during this month we will be making you aware of potential dangers to your pet.

Some of us will have started to prepare for Easter by buying Easter Eggs for the occasion. Whether it be to give to family and friends or arrange an easter egg hunt for the little ones.

Easter eggs are made of cocoa solids containing Theobromine which is the substance that is poisonous to our pets. All types of chocolate whether it is white, milk or dark chocolate can contain Theobromine but at different quantities.

Signs of chocolate toxicity can include restlessness, vomiting, diarrhoea, increased thirst, elevated heart rate, increased blood pressure, abnormal heart rhythm, tremours or increased body temperature.

In the situation where your pet has indulge in your chocolate supplies, please contact your veterinary practice immediately along with the chocolate packaging if possible to show or discuss with your vet.
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Canine Hepatitis

This disease is caused by the virus (Canine Adenovirus 1) and the viral particles are spread from dog to another dog via faecal matter or saliva. When these particles are ingested by an unvaccinated dog, the virus will enter the bloodstream and infect the animal’s internal organs.

A milder cause of canine hepatitis will include such signs as lethargy, loss of appetite, fever, pain, jaundice, vomiting and diarrhoea. Further signs may develop including abnormal bleeding and swollen lymph glands. In severe cases of this disease the patient may experience seizures and shock.

With this disease, it can cause long lasting complications after they are infected. One complication of this disease is chronic hepatitis where there is ongoing liver damage. Another complication is ‘Blue Eye’ where the disease causes damage to the front chamber of the eye.

Unfortunately there is no cure to stop the virus. The patient would be provided supportive care and isolated from other patients as it is highly contagious to other dogs.

Vaccination can provide prevention of this disease. At Milton Keynes Veterinary Group, our practice protocol is to re-vaccinate against Canine Hepatitis on a 3 yearly basis following primary vaccinations, in accordance to vaccine manufacture guidance.
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Canine Distemper Virus

Canine Distemper virus is a viral disease where puppies and unvaccinated dogs are most at risk. It is spread through droplets in the air which contain body fluids such as faeces, vomit, urine or respiratory excretions. The droplets are inhaled or ingested by an individual, where then the virus invades the lymphatic system and spreads through the body.

The incubation period for this virus is approximately one week and once infected most dogs will develop the disease to some extent.

Symptoms can vary with some dogs showing minimal signs including pyrexia, nasal discharge or upper respiratory signs e.g. sneezing. More severe cases may also include vomiting, depression, diarrhoea, wobbliness, seizures, paralysis or thickening of the foot pads or nose.

Unfortunately there is no specific cure or treatment for Distemper and infected cases will be provide supportive therapy to control the effects of the disease.

Vaccination is available in order to prevent this disease, this being one of the diseases routinely vaccinated against within the UK.
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Have you thought how Brexit may affect your travel plans?

If you are planning to travel abroad with your pet this year, you will need to prepare in advance before you go.

Pets travelling into the EU before 29th March 2019 can do so under the current Pet Passport scheme and will be able to return to the UK as before.

HOWEVER, if there is a “no-deal” Brexit, pets will still be able to travel to the EU but with further restrictions:
  • Pets will require an injection against rabies
  • Pets will then need to have a blood test to confirm that they have produced antibodies against rabies. THIS BLOOD TEST MUST BE CARRIED OUT AT LEAST 30 DAYS AFTER THE VACCINATION INJECTION
  • Pets will NOT be able to travel for at least 3 MONTHS after the BLOOD TEST WAS TAKEN
This means if you wish to be certain to travel later this year, please contact us for further advice or to book an appointment .

Further details can be found at gov.uk/guidance/pet-travel-to-europe-after-brexit
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Canine Parvovirus

This can be a potentially fatal illness in dogs and more cases are arising on a day by day basis. Over the years, we have seen many parvovirus cases at the practice as well as other areas of the UK. The disease is extremely contagious and can affect dogs of all breeds and ages.

The virus can be spread from dog to dog through direct contact, faecal excretion or via the environment. Affected animals that are recovering may still spread for up to eight weeks and once in the environment, it is highly resistant and may remain there for many months.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for Canine Parvovirus and on diagnosis, most cases will be provided supportive treatment such as fluid therapy and nutritional support. However this disease is preventable through vaccination.

We feel it is important for more owners to be aware of this disease and it’s severity, as well as the potential symptoms in order to detect the disease sooner rather than later.

Symptoms of Parvovirus can include the following:
  • Fever
  • Lethargy
  • Lack of appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea often with blood
  • If left untreated, their condition may deteriorate rapidly
If you have any further questions regarding this disease, please don’t hesitate to contact the practice on 01908 397777.
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