Unlike domestic dogs and cats, a rabbit’s teeth never stop growing and can grow nearly 2mm a week. Wild rabbits adapt for this growth by chewing daily on coarse grass and other vegetation that helps to wear down the crowns of their teeth. Pet rabbits are not typically offered access to the same type of vegetation and often consume dry pellets as the bulk of their diet.
Following the recent ‘stay at home’ and lockdown orders issued on 4th January 2021, we are continuing to offer a full a range of services for our patients, whilst adhering to COVID-19 safety guidelines.
As a practice, we have adopted a contactless approach to appointments.
Grooming is an important part of pet welfare and wellbeing and should be carried out regularly.
Spending time grooming your dog or cat can benefit your own mental health and improve your relationship with them. It is a good idea to start getting your pets used to grooming from an early age. It’s also a good opportunity to look for any abnormalities or changes in their physical condition, like lumps, bumps or skin lesions that may need to be checked out by a professional. Early detection of changes can be vital for your pet’s health, and your vet will be able to advise if you do find anything that concerns you.
Most pets love being brushed, and it is a good opportunity for bonding and training. Brushing is especially important for long haired dogs, though short haired dogs also benefit and will enjoy it too. Brushing helps to remove loose hairs and dead skin, remove any tangles and promote circulation. It also helps bring out natural oils which are then distributed, giving their coat a healthy sheen. Cats generally groom themselves, but again long-haired cats may need additional help. Older cats will also benefit from a helping human hand.
Always use a vet recommended brush suitable for your pet’s fur.
Bath your dog as often as is necessary, using good quality shampoo. Some dogs may love being bathed, whilst for others it will always be challenging. There is no need to regularly bathe your cat, only if it’s necessary to remove dirt or residue. Many cats find being bathed extremely stressful, so try to keep them calm with lots of stroking and soft words. Ensure there’s sufficient space for your pet to move around, but not to run away, with a non-slip surface (e.g use a bathmat in the bath). Smaller dogs and cats can be bathed in a sink. Water should be warm but not too hot, and you should use a specially formulated dog or cat shampoo.
Dry your pet with a fluffy towel or leave them to air dry. We do not recommend using a hairdryer on wet cats or dogs, unless they are particularly accustomed to it, in which case use a low heat setting and avoid eyes and ears.
Teeth and gum health is important for pets and needs to be considered as part of a regular grooming routine. If this is something you haven’t done before, it may take time for your pet to feel comfortable with the process. Our recent tooth brushing guide for small animals can help.
Cats and dogs can be prone to ear infections, which can cause pain and discomfort. Because they can’t vocalise issues it’s worth checking regularly for any sign of problems. Look out for any changes that have occurred between regular ear checks, redness, swelling, offensive odour or excessive wax. If you have any concerns, we’ll be happy to help.
As always, here at Oak Barn we’re on hand to offer advice and support, as well as to examine your pet if something seems wrong. Please contact us if you need our assistance.
When we think about weight management in pets it can be easy to focus on their exercise routine and how active they might, or might not, be. However, getting them out for their daily walk is only part of it, and in fact what they eat from one day to the next plays an equally important role.
Brushing is by far the best method of keeping your pet’s teeth clean and is more successful if taken in stages. Ideally, it would help if you brushed your dog’s teeth at least once daily or three times per week at a minimum to help remove plaque and prevent tartar build-up.
If you’re a dog owner, you’ll know that every month is walk your dog month; our canine friends need regular exercise all year round! But during January – with the enjoyment of Christmas a distant memory, the cold weather continuing, and those dreaded January blues to deal with – it can be tempting to put off walking your dog.
Walking your dog can bring benefits for both of you, which can be especially important in January, so our advice is to embrace this time of year.
You can no longer use a pet passport issued in Great Britain (England, Wales and Scotland) for travel to an EU country or Northern Ireland. You can still use a pet passport issued in an EU country or Northern Ireland.
Instead, pets travelling from Great Britain to an EU country or Northern Ireland will need an Animal Health Certificate (up to five pets on one certificate).
Your pet must:
The Animal Health certificate is:
We suggest that you discuss your travel plans with your vet at least one month before your intended travel plans to ensure your pet is prepared for travel.
Please contact us to advise on the steps required to ensure your pet is prepared for travel and ensure you have the required appointments booked for your pet.
The best place to check for the most up to date information is on the government website here
Oak Barn Vets can and will support you every step of the way.
As pet owners we all want the best for our four-legged friends, but we also know that pet ownership can be expensive. By becoming a member of our Pet Health for Life plan you can spread the cost of essential healthcare and save money.
Here are five great reasons for you and your pet to sign up today!
Supported by the World Health Organisation (WHO), Antimicrobial Awareness Week aims to increase awareness of global antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and to encourage best practices among clinicians, policy makers and also the public to avoid the further emergence and spread of drug-resistant infections.
As the weather gets colder, you and your pet may be spending more time indoors on the sofa. The lack of exercise can have a negative impact on the physical and mental wellbeing of both you and your pet. With ongoing limitations to outdoor activities because of COVID-19, knowing how to keep your pet fit at home could help keep them healthy and happy.
The change of season from summer to autumn sees lots of changes in nature and our surroundings – greens turn to rust and gold, leaves fall and summer flowers give way to berries. As always there are things we need to be aware of that may affect our pets and their wellbeing. Here are some things to look out for this autumn.
We celebrate World Heart Day today on 29 September 2020. This is the world’s biggest awareness-raising platform for cardiovascular disease (CVD) which is accountable for nearly half of all non-communicable disease deaths in humans.
Did you know that heart conditions affect our pets too? Within our group of practices, we have cardiology specialists available who investigate all aspects of heart disease.
Dogs, like humans, can be prone to gaining weight. This in turn can cause health problems like diabetes, osteoarthritis, heart and respiratory problems, and could reduce your dog’s life expectancy. Here we look at some tips to help get your pet pooch in good physical shape.
Getting a new pet is an exciting experience, and naturally, you are keen to get them back home to begin life as part of the family. However, for your new pet this can be a very stressful occasion, therefore it is important to ensure that you have fully prepared for their arrival and take things nice and slow to make their integration into your home a successful one. We have put together some top tips below that we believe will help you through the process:
Fireworks are used throughout the year to mark significant seasonal celebrations including Bonfire Night, Halloween, New Year’s Eve and Diwali.
Whilst they are enjoyable for humans to watch, pets can often get scared of the loud bangs and bright flashes. Preparing your pet early can make a significant difference and will help your pet cope throughout the seasonal events – start preparing now!
Let’s look at why annual visits are important for your pet.
You’re probably aware that when you get a puppy or kitten, you’re going to need to visit the vet for vaccinations, flea and tick prevention and other treatments. However, to maintain your pet’s health and wellbeing, regular trips to the vets are recommended. Annual vaccinations or boosters are important to protect your pet against preventable diseases and discomfort. Here we explore some of the common questions, and myths, around the annual visit for vaccination…
Even though the height of summer is over, we have been known to have some very warm days in September! We all enjoy getting out in the sunshine (when it arrives!), however the same is not always true for our pets! It is possible for any animal to overheat in hot weather, however we often forget how tough it can be on our pets that live in hutches, such as rabbits and guinea pigs.
If you’re planning on taking your pet to an EU Country after 1 January 2021, there’s some important information you need to know.
Before your dog, cat or ferret can travel for the first time after this date, you’ll need to start taking the following steps four months before you’re planning to travel …
Picture the scene…you’re in your garden, the sun is shining, maybe you have friends and family round to visit, and the charcoals are just about ready for you to start cooking al fresco. The last thing you want is an emergency vet visit with your beloved pet.
If you’re planning a barbecue this weekend, here are some things to consider to keep your pet safe.
It can be a challenge keeping the kids occupied during the summer holidays, especially if you are opting for a staycation this year, so here are five ideas that may help you out!
With restrictions on holidays abroad, and ongoing updates to the quarantine list, many people are opting for a ‘staycation’ in the UK this year. If your summer plans involve a trip to one of our beautiful beaches and your dog is lucky enough to be joining you, here are some things to be mindful of.
The daily walk forms an important part of our dog’s routine; a chance for them to stretch their legs (and ours!). As it’s something we do every day, we may not always be aware of some of the rules and restrictions in place when we wander through the park or woodland.
Wow, time is really flying by. Pete and Rimante have had “Spikey” a few weeks now. Here is how the first 10 days went and why this time is so important!
Grass seeds are a common problem during the spring and summer months. While your pet explores the outdoors, grass seed can easily brush off the tops of long grass stems onto their bodies. The seeds have pointed ends and are exceptionally sharp, so they become trapped in your pet’s fur and due to their shape they can only travel in one direction. This means they can often penetrate skin or move into ears.
Summer brings longer days, warmer climates, new adventures and outdoor socialising, which with pets in tow, can be made even more enjoyable! However, when the temperatures rise, the dangers to our pets increase too. To keep pets safe, you should be aware of potential hazards, as well as some top tips to help prevent your pet from endangering themselves throughout the summer months.
If recent months meant you put your new pet plans on hold, you may now be starting to put the wheels in motion to extend your family and welcome a new member. Many people Google reputable breeders or consider designer dogs based on celebrity social media profiles, however, considering adopting a rescue animal can be hugely rewarding.
As we transition from lockdown, more of us are exploring the outdoors with our pets in the summer weather. With increased time outside, the chances of coming across injured or sick wildlife also multiply. If you encounter a wild animal in need, it can be hard to know what to do. Wild animals can be very unpredictable if approached by humans, especially when they are frightened or injured.
Many of us are spending more time at home than we normally would, and you may be wondering if and how this may affect your feline friends. Below we have put together some useful hints and tips to help you create the perfect home environment, with some child-friendly activities included to keep both your children and cats occupied, all year round, but particularly during the summer months.
It’s hard not to smile when you see a dog with its head out of the window in a travelling car. They look so happy and carefree! But travelling with an unrestrained dog could be a real risk – to them, to you, and to other drivers.
If you’re going to be out and about on the road with your dog this summer, here are some things to consider to keep everyone safe.
As we prepare to say goodbye to Louise and Andrew Ketteridge, it’s our pleasure to introduce the newest member of the Oak Barn Vet team – our new clinical director Pete van Dongen.
Know the facts, reduce the risk
Spotting the signs of diabetes in your pets is crucial as just like us, our pets can suffer from the complex disease, but it isn’t always easily identifiable. During Diabetes Week, we wanted to raise awareness and share some advice about how you can help your pet by understanding what diabetes is, the causes and how to recognise the symptoms.
Having been in lockdown, and with schools closed for almost ten weeks, there has been a surge in parents getting rabbits for their children.
How do you feel about the relaxation of the lockdown restrictions? Relieved? Anxious? If we could ask our pets the same question, we’re fairly certain their answers would put them in one of two camps; those who are looking forward to the peace and quiet and those dreading not being with us 24/7.
It’s Mental Health Awareness Week here in the UK, so we wanted to explore the connection between pet ownership and mental health.
We have some big news here at Oak Barn. Vets Louise and Andrew Ketteridge will be retiring in June.
It has been their privilege and honour to look after the pets of Shalford and the surrounding areas, but the time has come to take a step back. As many of you know, 2019 threw a few health challenges at the Ketteridges and 2020 hasn’t been very forgiving either.