What's New at KVC ?
Dr Eleanor has taken immediate and extended leave from the clinic due to family circumstances.
We wish her our best in this difficult time.
Our locums Dr James, Dr Vic and Dr Peter will be with us for the next few weeks while we find some one to fill in for Eleanor.
We have a lovely tortoiseshell mother and kitten looking for a home. We also have a young long haired tabby and white male cat who is very affectionate.
Please contact the clinic if you are interested in giving a home to any of these lovely cats.
Receive a $10 eftpos card when you purchase Comfortis or Panoramis before 30th May.
Case of the Month
What to do when you lose your cat
We received an email recently from Anna who had lost her cat during a holiday.
"Our cat S is a frequent patient of Kathy's (she's a high maintenance diabetic, but very much loved).
Over Christmas, she went missing while we had her with us on holiday in Sorrento. We were lucky enough to locate her after three gruelling days of searching, partly as a result of following advice from various websites after hours of trawling the Internet. Thanks also to Kathy for her encouragement. We found S at 5am under an abandoned bungalow 8 street houses away (but only two houses as the crow flies). We heard her meow, but it took patience and a strong flashlight to finally track her down."
Anna has kindly written and summary of all the things she learned during this time and has written some notes of advice to share with anyone who may find themselves in similar circumstances:-
Unless your cat is an outdoor cat that knows the area it's missing in, it is unlikely to find its own way home. If you lose your cat away from home, or your indoor cat escapes, there is a lot you can do to raise the odds of finding it.
Unfortunately, there are a number of myths about cat behaviour that can get in the way of a happy reunion. It's important to know that:
1. Cats don't have innate navigating senses to know which way is home. Except in very lucky cases, you're going to have to go and find your cat to bring it home.
2. Cats in unfamiliar surrounds don't go into hiding because they are unwell. They scurry and go into hiding because they are frightened. They might be outside their usual territory or spooked by something. Again, taking action to find your cat will boost the odds of getting it home.
3. Waiting for a cat to find its way will only make things worse. Cats can be spooked from their initial hiding spot and can continue to seek shelter in any random direction. The sooner you search for your cat, the better.
Tips for the search party:
- You will need to conduct a thorough search, checking in every cat-sized hiding place you can find, starting with where the cat went missing. Allow sufficient time.
- Pet cats gravitate to hiding in and under man made structures like houses and sheds, and very occasionally up in trees, rather than in shrubs.
- Consider viewing Google maps satellite view, and identify the 4-5 buildings in all directions from where the cat went missing. Plan to search these properties, rather than following streets (which have a sequence that's meaningless to cats).
- Searching is most effective between 11pm and 6am when there are fewer loud noises and cats are naturally more confident. Naturally you'll need prior permission to check out neighbour's land, and you shouldn't be searching on your own for safety reasons.
- Take a good torch to illuminate hidden nooks such as building foundations.
- Take smelly (delicious) food with you, and call out to your cat, pausing and listening for a reply. A hungry cat may call back faintly.
- Avoid fast movements - your cat will be in such a state of fear that it will be easily spooked.
- It is worth putting up posters to seek the help of people in the area. Do notify all surrounding vets and animal shelters of the circumstances so that they are ready to help in the event that your cat is brought in (equally, let the same people know if you find your cat). Even if your cat is microchipped (check that the associated phone number is current), a shelter may not have located the chip or run the scan, so it's best to phone shelters or visit in person.
Odds are that your cat needs you to find it. Don't give up after just a few days of searching.
For more information on what to do if your cat is lost, see:
We hope that you do not every find yourself in these circumstance, but if you do, I hope this advice is of benefit to you.
Pet Care Facts
Heat Stress in Companion Animals
With the run of hot weather we are having lately it is important to remember to look after our furry companions.
As well has having a fur coat some of our pets may be predisposed to suffer from heat stress due to obesity, difficulty breathing (as in some short faced breeds such as pugs and bull dogs), medical conditions such as heart disease or thyroid disease, and excessive exercise.
Dogs and cats cannot lose heat by sweating as effectively as we can, and lose a lot of heat by panting. High humidity will decrease the amount of heat animals are able to lose by panting so it is important to take the humidity into account as well as the temperature. Even temperatures in the low 30's can become a problem on very humid days.
Heat stroke affects all organs in the body and can rapidly lead to death.
Animals suffering from heat stress will open mouth breath, may be weak or wobbly and can seizure.
Here are some basic rules to follow: -
Do not exercise your dog on hot or humid days
Always have plenty of shade available for your dog and plenty of fresh water to drink. Consider adding an ice block to the drinking bowl before you go out to help keep the water cool
A small wading pool is ideal for those animal that love to swim
Consider given your pet a summer hair cut if their coat is thick or long.
If you pet has any medical problems then consider leaving them in air conditioning on very hot days.
Do not leave your pet in the car unattended. Temperatures in a closed car and be double those outside.
If you think your pet is heat stressed then try to cool them as soon as possible by wetting them down in a hose or a bath and seek immediate veterinary attention.