Tail Docking and other legislation updates:
As of October 2018, the non-therapeutic docking of dogs tails will be prohibited in New Zealand.
An independent report was carried out to determine whether docking caused significant pain and distress, serious or lasting harm, and if there is a therapeutic purpose to this procedure. This document may be found at https://www.mpi.govt.nz/law-and-policy/legal-overviews/animal-welfare/animal-welfare-regulations/ .
It was once assumed that neonatal puppies did not generate a response to pain as older animals would. Further research has proven that they do develop a signal in response to a painful stimulus. Whether or not they experience this as pain, this signal is harmful as it will increase the animal’s sensitivity to pain and anxiety, increasing the distress experienced throughout the animal’s life.
Other arguments against tail docking include complications such as scarring, dehiscence, fistula recurrence and anal sphincter or rectal trauma. Chronic complications from nerve damage causing self-mutilation or incontinence may also be observed. The tail also has a purpose in balance and communication.
Several arguments in favour of tail docking have been negated, with studies showing that tail injury is not a serious risk to the average dog or dogs employed as companion animals, and when tail injury does occur it is often readily treatable, therefore not warranting preventative docking.
In conclusion it was found that tail docking is a significant surgical procedure with the potential to cause considerable pain and distress to the animal and that it is not justified by any animal welfare benefit to the dog. As a clinic we are in full support of this change!
Several other changes in legislation will be released as they are developed, including new criteria regarding ear cropping, debarking, declawing and branding as well as many proposals in other species. These can be be found by clicking the above link for the MPI website.
Read more >Tuesday 3rd of October 2017: During the spring and summer months we see a high number of dogs with itchy skin.
In the past, the only way to manage atopy (itchy skin) was through medications such as antihistamines and steroids but Hillâ€™s nutritionists and veterinarians have developed a new Prescription Diet specially formulated to help manage environmental sensitivities in dogs.
Read more >Tuesday 3rd of October 2017: Vaccinations are designed to prevent your pet from contracting diseases. We have a few different vaccines available in NZ based on what diseases pose a risk to your dog.
Read more >Wednesday 27th of September 2017: It seems like companies are bringing out new flea products every few months these days, and even we find it hard to keep up! Here is an overview of the products we have in store.
Read more >Thursday 27th of July 2017: Some horse owners are still drenching their animals on a six to eight weekly basis regardless of age or worm burden. This was a traditional approach which is outdated and possibly detrimental in terms of developing resistance to drenches.
Read more >Thursday 27th of July 2017: The first five years of a horse's life are critical in regards to dental development. Like us, horses have two sets of teeth, the deciduous being shed from about two and a half years until the permanent teeth have erupted at around five years.
Read more >Tuesday 11th of July 2017: Kennel Cough (also known as canine infectious tracheobronchitis) is a highly contagious respiratory disease. Dogs commonly contract kennel cough at places where large amounts of dogs accumulate, such as boarding and daycare facilities and dog parks.
Read more >Tuesday 11th of July 2017: As our pets age dental disease can start to set in. We often start noticing signs from around the age of 5 (which equates to around 35 in human years). Dental disease can affect the internal organs and the overall health of your pet. There are some measures you can take to help slow or prolong the effects of dental disease at home.
Read more >Friday 23rd of June 2017: It is important to Vet Services that you understand what happens to your pet when they come to us for surgery. We appreciate that you may feel anxious leaving your pet and we hope the following will help ease any concern you may have.
Read more >Friday 23rd of June 2017: A common emergency condition that we see at a vet clinic is the cat with a 'blocked bladder' (urethral obstruction). They often present to us as a cat that is in pain due to an unknown cause. The owner may find them hiding in the garden or under a bed and suspect that the cat has had some sort of trauma.
Read more >Friday 23rd of June 2017: In recent weeks we have been presented with several cases of rabbit haemorrhagic diseases. This is a viral condition which is unfortunately deadly to pet bunnies.
Read more >Friday 23rd of June 2017: Many people know the importance of insuring their items, their house or car, even their own health. Fortunately we are also able to insure pets, for not only medical and surgical care but in some cases routine visits can be covered (including vaccinations and wellness checks/blood tests).
Read more >Tuesday 28th of March 2017: General stiffness, slowing down, difficulty rising... Is it just old age? Our senior pets may show subtle signs or be quite obvious in their attempts to tell us about their problems. One of these problems that we commonly see is arthritis.
Read more >Tuesday 28th of March 2017: A few months ago I was presented with a 7 year old male cat Beau who had been weak, lethargic and drinking more than usual for about 3 weeks at home. Closer examination revealed very weak and floppy muscles with an almost distended abdomen. Blood and urine tests then showed elevated blood glucose confirming my suspicion that this boy had developed diabetes mellitus.
Read more >Tuesday 28th of March 2017: Being from South Africa it was relatively easy diagnosing the cause of severe anaemia in dogs as almost always it was due to a blood parasite called Babesia (which we don't have in New Zealand), and if it wasn't that then the chances were good that it was due to an auto immune disease called Auto Immune Haemolytic Anaemia or IMHA for short.
Read more >Tuesday 28th of March 2017: What is wellness testing?
Wellness testing is the term given to a group of tests that is performed specifically to detect signs of early disease in a pet that is apparently healthy.
Read more >Friday 20th of January 2017: The 'New Zealand Cattle Tick' or 'Bush Tick', as an adult, is a red-brown, 8-legged tick visible with the naked eye from 3x2mm to around 9x7mm (whne itâ€™s full of feed). Larval and nymph (juvenile) stages are much smaller (but still visible) with 6 legs and a dark to black colour. It is known as the three-host-tick as it transitions through three stages from larvae to nymph to adult by attaching to a host, engorging by sucking blood, then dropping back onto the ground and repeating through the stages.
Read more >Tuesday 13th of December 2016: The case of an overweight pet visiting the vet clinic is an all too common theme. Furthermore, the majority are visiting for health reasons that could be prevented if these animals were at their ideal weight.
Read more >Thursday 8th of December 2016: With summer just around the corner we thought it appropriate to give our clients some information on heat stroke, what to look out for and what to do should it happen.
Heat stroke occurs when your pet's internal temperature rises abnormally high above 39 C. because he/she is unable to lose excess heat through normal processes: mainly panting and radiation of heat into the surrounding environment.
Read more >Thursday 8th of December 2016: Summer is here and so are those nasty seeds that stick into anything, anywhere, any time.
Apart from it being painful to our four footed companions when these seeds burrow into them, it can pose important health risks too. In clinic we have experienced their migration into different areas of the animal, each with their own complications.