What's New at KVC ?
Dr Wendy is leaving us to go back to Hong Kong for family reasons. We will miss Wendy and wish her all the best for the future.
Dr Lucy Young will be joining our practice in September. Lucy graduated from Melbourne University in 2011 and has spent the last 4 years in small animal practice in country New South Wales and Eastern Melbourne. Lucy has a keen interest small animal practice especially in medicine and diagnostic imaging.
Buy a 6 pack of Panoramis between 17 August and 14 November, and enter online for the chance to win $1000.
Case of the Month
"P" is a lovely 8 year old dog who had a history of intermittent weakness, sleeping more and just being generally more dull and tired over several months. Her blood tests showed very non specific findings of a mild increase in liver parameters and a mild decrease in blood protein.
Ultrasound of her abdomen showed a large extra vessel going from her intestine to the large blood vessel that goes back to the heart, bypassing the liver.
This is called a liver shunt, and can either be a congenital problem, or can be acquired secondary to severe liver disease.
This blood vessel is present in all dogs and cats prior to birth, as the main functions of the liver are performed by the mother at this stage, so only a minimal blood supply to the liver is required. After the puppy or kitten is born this vessel then closes, so the liver can take over the functions of excreting toxins and producing blood proteins.
If this vessel does not close, a significant amount of blood continues to bypass the liver, leading to a build up of toxins in the body and a decrease in production of some blood proteins.
Most dogs are diagnosed at a very young age, with intermittent vomiting, lethargy, and urinary and neurologic signs. However some dogs with a congenital shunt manage with minimal clinical signs until later in life , such as "P".
Congenital shunts are more common in some breeds including some Terriers, Pugs, Maltese and Miniature Schnauzers.
Treatment involves surgery to close this vessel and divert blood back to the liver, or if this is not possible, then medications to help control clinical signs.
"P" has had a successful surgery and her owner thinks she is better than she has been in years!
Pet Care Facts
The Importance of Vaccination
We are very lucky to have vaccines for our beloved pets to help prevent serious and fatal infectious diseases. However, because vaccination has been so widespread and successful, it is easy to forget how serious these diseases can be, and the importance of keeping vaccinations up to date.
Often we allow vaccinations to lapse for pets that do not go outside or mix with other animals very much, as they are at low risk on a day to day basis.
However emergency vet visits or an emergency stay in a boarding facility can put these animals at risk as their immunity has been allowed to wane, and (even with the best of intentions) facilities where many animals are brought together with illness or stress can be a source of infectious disease.
There has recently been an outbreak of feline panleukopaenia virus in Melbourne and some unvaccinated cats have died as a result.
Also, cat flu in unvaccinated cats is a serious disease, resulting in nasal and ocular infections and ulceration, as well as inappetance for up to 2 weeks.
Infectious respiratory diseases, such as kennel cough in dogs and cat flu in cats, can also severely complicate management of the common heart and respiratory problems we see in our older pets.
If you need advice on the right vaccinations for your pet or you need to bring your pets vaccinations up to date, please call the clinic on 9372 2733.