Although it has been a strange start to Spring with the heaviest recorded snow Goulburn has seen in many years, the flowers are out and the grass will start growing if it continues to rain.
This newsletter will aim to be released every quarter by the team at the Clinton Street Veterinary Clinic and will give clients information about what new treatments are available, any common seasonal problems to look for in their pets, and to give the latest news within the clinic.
If we can’t get the newsletter out on time, it's probably because we have been a little preoccupied looking after the range of animals we treat. These start from the small companion pets like your cat and dog or even your rabbit and bird, through to the larger farm animals like cattle, horses, sheep, goats and alpacas. Our new updated logo tries to incorporate the range of species that we see, but being the only true small and large animal veterinarians of Goulburn, we could not fit the menagerie of animals into one logo. The new logo was created with the help of a local artist and graphic designer. You may have noticed it on our updated website, front sign or staff uniforms.
Watch out, snakes about!
As we move into warmer times of the year it also means that snakes are coming out of their hibernation-like state, called torpor. We have already seen a few bites in cats and dogs present to the clinic.
Snake bites can be fatal and quick action from owners increases the likelihood of survival. Dogs and cats react very differently from a snake bite but if you see your pet with a snake or think your pet has been bitten then do not hesitate to contact us morning or night.
Dogs may experience pre-paralytic signs straight after being bitten, including collapse, vomiting and salivation, but then may seemingly spontaneously recover. If you see these signs then it is highly likely that your dog has received a lethal dose of venom and will deteriorate suddenly in minutes to hours. This is the time to bring your dog straight to the vet as a progressive entire body paralysis will soon follow, ultimately leading to death if not treated.
In cats that have been bitten you may see generalised weakness and inco-ordination, causing an unusual gait, dilated pupils, excessive vocalisation and breathing difficulties. The most important tool in treating snake envenomation is administering anti-venom and the sooner it is administered the higher the chance of reversing these life threatening clinical signs. At the Clinton Street Veterinary Clinic we use multi-snake anti-venom which is effective against Tiger, Brown and Black snakes, so there is no need to attempt to find or identify the snake. Also remember that snake bites are one of the most costly emergencies, and it may “pay” to be prepared, either through a pet emergency savings fund or pet insurance.
Welcome Dr Ellen
This September we welcomed new vet Ellen James to the clinic. Having finished her vet degree at CSU in Wagga in July she is ready to jump in to clinical practice, and is finding her feet in surgery, looking after hospital cases, emergencies including caesareans, and calvings and sick cows.
Growing up in Newcastle the cooler Goulburn mornings are going to take some getting used to, but she is grateful for the warm welcome from our clients. Ellen’s particular interests are beef cattle production, public health and managing small animal problems with owners. In her spare time you’ll probably catch Ellen knitting something, or out exploring the region-hiking, shopping or eating!
Goulburn is a hot spot for parvovirus infection, a deadly disease to dogs. Prevention is always better than cure, and vaccination is the best way to ensure your pet is protected. Every vaccination appointment includes a full health check and we can discuss any questions you have about your pet.
Recently Dr Lloyd donated his time and was involved with a vaccination drive for pension and health care card holders in the Goulburn Area. The day was made possible through the donation of vaccines from the RSPCA NSW, The Goulburn Mulwaree Shire Council and other local vets. Through the multiple organisations working together, it enabled over 75 dogs and 21 cats to be vaccinated and microchipped at no cost to the owners. Sometimes life gets busy and expensive and there may not be enough change left over to pay for the annual vaccination. However, dogs that are correctly vaccinated are protected by Parvovirus and the more individual animals that are vaccinated, the greater the “herd immunity” in Goulburn is and the harder it is for Parvovirus to get established.
With the recent warm weather and light precipitation there has been an abundance of yellow flowers popping up in paddocks. Many of these yellow flowers are from Dandelion or Flatweed family and when ingested in large amounts can cause Australian Stringhalt. Ingestion of these weeds contains a toxin that damages the long myelinated nerves in the body, most commonly the nerves in the hind legs. As a result you see the horse walking with a strange gait with an over-exaggerated hind leg action. Prevention is better than cure and ensuring that horses graze minimally on these weeds is important. Additionally weeds can be removed or sprayed.
Capeweed in a local paddock