This May is Veterinary Nursing Awareness Month which aims to spread the word about the importance of the role of the veterinary nurse in practice and the provision of responsible pet care to the general public.
Our Veterinary Nurses are extremely important on a day to day basis and we are extremely thankful for their hard-work and dedication.
Did you know that a Veterinary Nurse can….
- Position patients for X-rays and ultrasounds
- Take blood samples
- Place intravenous catheters
- Place urinary catheters
- Monitor critical patients
- Carry out minor surgical procedures such as removing a lipoma (fatty lump)
- Using the microscope to evaluate all manner of samples
- Calculate the exact number of calories a patient needs per day, along with fluid requirements and urinary output
- Assist the Vet in surgical procedures
- Revive neonates (puppies and kittens!) during a caesarian section
- Assist with CPR of patients who have undergone cardiac arrest
- Administer all manner of medication (be it oral, topical, under the skin, into a muscle or vein)
- Administer oxygen therapy to patients who may be experiencing difficulty breathing
- Carry out nursing consultations
- Administer second vaccinations
- Take blood pressure readings
- Update owners of patients who are staying with us for longer periods of time and arrange visits
- Triage emergency cases
- Support owners through the times where euthanising their pet may be necessary, and ensuring that your pet is always treated with dignity
- Giving advice on behavioural problems
- Keep the practice clean and tidy and ensure everybody has had enough tea / coffee
- Ensuring that we have enough stock of all the drugs and consumables used on a day to day basis
- Help on the reception desk, advising clients over the phone
Cheeky visited us at our Stoke Road cat clinic last month as he needed dental treatment. He was lucky enough to be the only cat having a procedure that day so it was nice and quiet and got lots of fuss from our team. Cheeky was provided with a cat castle to provide a place to feel safe and secure and we also use Feliway diffusers which release pheromones to help our patients feel relaxed.
Prior to Cheeky’s anaesthetic, he was given a premedication to provide pain relief prior to his dental and make him relax. Once the premedication had taken effect, he was given an injectable anaesthetic to induce anaesthesia and maintained on anaesthetic gas throughout the dental. Throughout the anaesthetic, Cheeky was monitored by our nurse and connected to monitoring equipment including ECG, capnography and blood pressure monitoring.
Before any extractions, the vet will assess the teeth and take x-rays to assess the roots which are under the gum line. After assessment, Cheeky had to have 8 teeth extracted which were found to be diseased. The x-rays also showed that Cheeky had a condition called pulpitis which was affecting one of his canines. Pulpitis is inflammation of the dental pulp tissue. The pulp contains bloods vessels, nerves and connective tissue, supplying the tooth’s blood and nutrients. Pulpitis is usually a secondary complication of a fractured or chipped tooth.
After Cheeky’s dental, he was placed into a recovery area and monitored by our nurse until he was awake. Cheeky has now recovered well and regained his appetite!
This beautiful little girl is Bo, Bo started coming to see Charlotte in our weight clinics over 2 years ago. Her owners have been so dedicated to helping her lose the weight and it has made the biggest difference to her! Before she used to be a very lazy cat, just sleeping all the time (she didn’t even fit through her cat flap!), now she runs around and plays and hops in and out of her cat flap with no issue!
So please join us in sending an absolutely HUGE congratulations to Bo and her owners for this incredible life changing weight loss! Charlotte is so proud of what they have achieved!
If you have any worries that your pet may be a little on the porky side, please don’t hesitate to contact us, we run free weight clinics throughout the week at several of our branches.
What is Alabama Rot?
Alabama rot is a disease which damages blood vessels within the kidney and skin. The disease causes blood clots to form in the vessels, damaging their lining and delicate tissues within the kidneys, and sadly can lead to kidney failure which can be fatal. It can also cause ulceration on the dog’s tongue. Alabama rot is also known as Cutaneous and Renal Glomerular Vasculopathy (CRGV), and was first detected by in the 1980s in the USA.
This disease is still very rare within the UK, and we advise dog owners to seek advice from their local vet if their dog develops unexplained skin lesions. Within a twenty mile radius of Milton Keynes, there has only been one confirmed case since 2014. However, if you are traveling with your dogs, areas of higher case records include Berkshire, Cornwall, County Durham, New Forest, Nottinghamshire, Norfolk, Surrey, Wiltshire, Worcestershire and Northern Ireland.
What causes Alabama Rot?
Unfortunately the disease can affect any dog of any breed, age or size, and the majority of cases have recently been walked in muddy or woodland areas.
There seems to be more cases reported during the months November to May than there is between the months of June to October, therefore winter and spring time is more dangerous to your dog.
What are the symptoms?
Most commonly, the skin lesions are seen below the knee or elbow, and are a symptom of the disease rather than being a wound from injury. There may be a patch of red skin or an ulcerated area, and there may be swelling around the lesion. In the following two to seven days, the affected dogs have developed signs of kidney failure, including vomiting, lethargy and reduced appetite. This disease will not be the only cause of skin lesions or kidney failure, often there will be another cause.
However, prompt diagnosis and treatment is imperative for any dog with Alabama Rot, but without knowing what causes the disease, it is also difficult for us to be able to give you specific advice on prevention or where to walk your dog.
How to prevent Alabama Rot?
We advise checking your dog over for skin lesions regularly and monitor for any signs as mentioned above. We also suggest bathing your dogs after their walks to remove any mud. Alabama rot is unfortunately not a disease we can vaccinate against at present, and it is not thought to affect cats or rabbits.
We will update this blog if any new information becomes available for this disease.
This month is a celebration of our animal friends. National Pet Month is a registered charity with the aim for promoting responsible pet ownership. They also aim to bring together pet lovers from all walks of life.
THE AIMS OF NATIONAL PET MONTH
- Promote responsible pet ownership
- Increase the awareness of the roles of pet care specialists
- Raise the awareness of the benefits of owning a pet
- Highlight the value of assistance and working companion animals