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puppy POINTERS

– Dr Joanna Reilly Bendigo Animal Hospital

Resident animal expert Dr Joanna Reilly answers some of the most commonly asked questions when it comes to your furry children. What is the best way to keep fleas off my dog? Did you know that dogs don’t actually ‘catch’ adult fleas from other dogs? Adult fleas live their entire life on one dog or cat. Female fleas lay enormous amounts of eggs which fall off the animal into the garden, bedding, carpets, doonas, furniture or floorboards. The larvae develop, and are so sneaky that they can just lie in wait until some unsuspecting pet wanders by. They then immediately spring onto the new warm body and start breeding again. So not only is it important to treat EVERY animal with one of the effective flea controls, Advocate, Frontline, Revolution, but it is often necessary to treat the environment as well with flea bombs or pest control. Remember, any stray cats coming into your garden are leaving little presents of flea eggs behind, but if your dog or cat is covered with one of the above mentioned products, these pesky freeloaders will be killed before they can breed. If you have a particularly heavy flea infestation,

you may still see fleas on your pets for some time, but don’t give up. You will beat them in the end.

How do I know if my puppy has worms?

What vaccinations does my puppy need?

Puppies can actually be born with worms that have crossed the placenta from the mother. Look for a ravenous appetite and pot belly that doesn’t seem to disappear. A dull coat and failure to grow means the worms are eating all the puppy’s nutrition. Unfortunately some worms also suck the puppy’s blood so if you lift the lips and have a look at the gums they will appear white instead of a healthy pink colour like our own. Often the puppies with a heavy worm burden will actually vomit whole worms and often pass them out the back end as well.

It is so important to vaccinate your pups against the extremely debilitating and often fatal diseases parvo virus, distemper and hepatitis. The temporary antibodies that protect the pup have come from their mother’s blood, but these are used up by six weeks of age, so this is when a visit to the vet is vital. You pup will be given a C3 (against distemper, hepatitis and parvo) and this injects them with a very tiny amount of the actual diseases so the puppy’s own defence system will create antibodies to fight the disease if they are ever infected with it. Three weeks later another vaccination is needed and we then give a C5, which also has a canine (or kennel) cough component. One more C5 three weeks later and the puppy is fully immunised and safe to go out in public. ■

It is a very sensible practice to commence worming the pups from two weeks of age, or take them for a visit to your vet when you buy them to start on a worming and vaccination protocol.

pawfect pets

Logan age 3 Silverwings Photography

Did you know that Australia has one of the highest levels of pet ownership in the world with almost two thirds of Australian households currently owning at least one pet? Here are some of the cutest furry companions from the Bendigo area.

s 13 week Milly age hotography gs P

Silverwin

Bond age 3

Katherine Davis

Photography

issue 25 - bendigo magazine | 143

BgoMag Issue 25  
BgoMag Issue 25  

Bendigo Magazine Issue 25 - Summer 2011

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