Have you ever wondered what can be done to help those squishy face dogs like British Bulldogs, Boxers, Pugs and French Bulldogs (also known as brachycephalic breeds), to breathe that little bit easier? Due to their airway conformation, these breeds are often prone to breathing and gastrointestinal issues. One of our veterinarians, Dr Melissa Kozaruk, recently attended a 2-day intensive workshop, to learn the latest surgical techniques for these patients and pass on these surgical skills to the rest of our vet team. “Yoda” is a French Bulldog who recently had surgery at Erina Heights Veterinary Hospital to correct his nose conformation, giving him a lot more space to get air in through his nostrils. Have a look at the before and after pictures- can you see the difference?
Do you think your pet sleeps a lot? Well here are some fun facts. Dogs sleep an average 12-14 hours per day, while cats sleep an average of 12.5 hours a day. Horses and elephants only sleep 3-4 hours a day, whereas the little brown bat sleeps up to 20 hours a day! Some species have special adaptations for sleep. Dolphins and whales avoid drowning by sleeping with only half of their brain at a time, and some migrating birds can sleep while flying!
In January we welcome back our first nurse from maternity leave, Jade Bridge. Jade has been very busy over the past 6 months, raising her son Cohen. We eagerly welcome her back to the team at Erina Heights Veterinary Hospital as she steps up to the role of practice manager.
You may see a new face in our vet team over the next few months! Dr Justine Norwood (BVSc- University of Sydney) will be joining us for a 3 month rotation as part of a veterinary internship program. Justine is a fully qualified veterinarian, with experience in the animal industry, as well as a background in tourism and business. She will also rotate through other prominent veterinary hospitals including North Shore Veterinary Specialist Hospital. Welcome Justine!
Care with outdoor cats as tick cases are still rampant.
We are lucky to have a choice of tablet and chew products for prevention of tick paralysis in dogs (Nexgard, Bravecto, and Simparica), but these cannot be used in cats. There is no reliable registered product for this purpose in cats. We feel that the closest we can get to protection in cats is with the collar product “Seresto” which has a label claim only for flea prevention. Other alternatives include confining indoors, daily searches, close clipping of the coat, and less well regarded topical sprays.
Cats develop respiratory signs earlier than dogs, and in some cases their difficulty breathing precedes their leg weakness. As we only have dog derived tick antiserum to treat them, with its greater risk of shock or anaphylaxis, cats give us many challenges in their treatment. Remember, the earlier you get the patient to us, the better the outcome.
Melissa has just returned from the University of Qld, Gatton small animal surgery facility and getting the latest surgical techniques to improve and treat the obstructive airway problems so common in brachycephalic dogs (short nosed breeds such as pugs, French and English bulldogs, Lhasa’s etc).
Jesse is attending two days at the Charles Sturt Vet Faculty in Wagga Wagga updating his skills on the new orthopaedic locking screw and plate technique for the repair of bone fractures. As the screw is now locked into the bone plate as well as the bone, it is inherently more secure and resistant to loosening.
18 month old “Ned” presented with a squinty and weepy right eye. Examination revealed a 4mm long wood splinter embedded within the cornea (the glassy front of the eye). As the splinter was deep with the potential for rupture of the globe on removal, the client was offered referral locally for specialist surgery under an operating microscope to limit the chances of complications.
Ned’s owner was not in a financial position to take up this option after his visit to them, so returned for us to give it our best shot. Under general anaesthesia and head loupe magnification the splinter was carefully manoeuvred out and luckily no fluid leakage followed. With drug treatment to cover infection and inflammation, Ned recovered well, and the image attached shows Ned at a two week follow up with a feint scar that should clear completely over the next few weeks.
Nurse Jackie adds another to our baby list!
Young Jayden, now seven weeks old takes our tally to five bubs in 2017 & all healthy bouncing boys!
We look forward to Jacqui returning early in the New Year, along with Jade & Kat.
In the meantime, a warm welcome to our most recent new nurses
Mia & Tanya, our team of nurses are amazing. They are happy to answer any questions you may have about your family pets.
Exciting News…..Congratulations to Leah, Kat, Jade, Jesse and partners with all their newborn baby boys – Jack, Kurt, Elliot & Cohen have recently arrived. Nurse Jacqui is imminent and the last one to go; so we wish her well.
And with maternity leave changes now in full swing, EHVH welcomes Stacey to our nursing team. Stacey recently moved to the Central Coast from Sydney with a young family, having worked at the specialist centre SASH at North Ryde as a surgical nurse. She brings a wealth of experience to our practice.
We strongly urge ALL dog owning clients to preference one of the three oral brands available from the same drug class for best tick prevention; ie, Simparica, Nexgard or Bravecto.
“Prevention is Better than the Cure” – Talk to our reception staff to discuss which may be most suitable for your dog. We can also discuss the limited options available for cats.
Tick season on the central coast is July to January. A tick as small as a match head, that is only 4mm, may cause the following symptoms Continue reading “Tick Season Is Here”