R & M B

Every year we see many cases of cats and dogs
poisoned with rat/mouse baits. Dogs will
readily eat the baits, as well as some cats, but
dogs and cats can also become poisoned by
eating poisoned mice or rats. The active ingredients in these poisons (usually warfarin, brodifacoum and bromadiolone) cause a deficiency
of vitamin K in the body and interfere with the
blood’s ability to form clots. This can result in
a bleeding disorder leading to internal bleeding
and anaemia. It can easily cause death. The
effects of rat or mouse baits are not immediate
– often the symptoms of poisoning are noticed
days after eating the bait. The symptoms can
include lethargy or lack of energy, pale gums,
painful or swollen joints, panting, coughing,
swelling under the jaw, cold extremities,
blood in the urine and bleeding from the nose
or other orifices. Treatment of poisoning with
rat baits may be as simple as supplementing the
dog’s diet with vitamin K, but many cases require more intensive treatment and a blood
transfusion. If you see your pet consume any
rat or mouse bait it is advised to visit a veterinarian immediately so that vomiting can be
induced so the animal does not absorb any of
the toxin. Remember, you won’t see any immediate effects of the poison, but don’t let this
fool you in to thinking that your pet may not
be affected.
If your pet displays any of the symptoms mentioned earlier, contact your veterinarian. Please
also be vigilant if you are using rat or mouse baits
and place them in bait stations or secure locations
where dogs and cats will not have access to them,
and remember to check them regularly. Also be
very wary of any baits that may claim to be “pet
friendly” – most of these are still very toxic to
domestic pets, but are formulated to be less palatable. If you are concerned at all about your pet and
think they may have had access to rat or mouse
bait please do not hesitate to contact the clinic.
Puppy Preschool commences on Wednesday
April 10th from
7-8pm over 4 weeks. The classes are
suitable for puppies from 8 to 16
weeks of age. Cost is $85 and includes
a free bag of Eukanuba food and all
puppies will be presented with a
certificate and gift upon graduation.
Contact the clinic for more details.
New faces at the clinic
Over the coming months you may
notice some different faces at the clinic.
In April, Annabel Cadzow will have a placement
for 2 weeks and Kyra Wilhelm will have a 2 week
placement with us in June. Both students are in
their final year of Veterinary Science at the
University of Adelaide.
We hope that the students will enjoy their time at
the clinic and gain lots of valuable experience. In
April we welcome veterinary nurse Ashleigh
Smart to the clinic, while Brenda Poland is on
maternity leave.
It is crucial when planning your Bushfire Action
Plan to think about your animals. If your decision is
to ‘Stay’ or ‘Go’, you will need to
PLAN if animals are to be relocated and to
Provide shelter, water and the ability to
safely move about as hazards approach.
Do your best to ensure animals cannot wander at large, being both at risk and causing a
Allow plenty of time to move animals if
your decision is to ‘leave early’.
Provide for animals in a wildfire shelter if
they are to accompany you.
Remember animals may be fearful and their
behaviour may be abnormal.
For more emergency information visit:
Reference: SA Veterinary Emergency Management Brochure.
The clinic will be closed over the
Easter break from 29th March to 1st
April, re-opening on the of 2nd April.
We will also be closed on the 25th of
April for the Anzac Day holiday. For
emergency veterinary service please
call (08)87521478.
Pregnancy toxaemia in cattle and sheep is a syndrome
where the late pregnant ewe or cow has inadequate
energy (glucose) to be able to supply both the needs of
the foetus and herself. In the last quarter of the gestation period there is an exponential increase in energy
requirements due to rapid foetal growth, mammary
development and colostrum production. If these energy requirements are not met by the ewe or cow’s
diet and body reserves hypoglycaemia, or low blood
glucose, occurs. Hypoglycaemia is responsible for the
early symptoms of pregnancy toxaemia, which include
dullness, lethargy, loss of appetite and falling behind
the mob or stumbling if driven. The body then attempts to break down fat reserves to provide energy,
but with the lack in glucose the pathway to break
down fats in the body cannot function properly leading to a build up in the production of ketone bodies
resulting in excessive ketones in the blood
(hyperketonaemia or acetonaemia). This leads to acidosis and further symptoms of increased depression,
further decreased appetite, neurological signs
(apparent blindness, staggering, stumbling), recumbency progressing to coma and death. Treatment of
pregnancy toxaemia is often frustrating and disappointing. If the cow or ewe has progressed too far in
the syndrome many of the symptoms can become
irreversible. Treatment includes injection with 4-in-1
solution (contains calcium, glucose and magnesium),
drenching with propylene glycol (“Ketol”) and/or
electrolyte solutions containing glucose and sometimes inducing labour or aborting
the pregnancy. Prevention is always better than having to treat these cases; if you
are getting cases of pregnancy toxaemia
it can be an indicator that the mob is
sufficiently undernourished to cause
bigger production losses due to poor
lamb or calf survival and growth, break
in wool growth, reduction in milk production and exposure losses. Risk factors
for pregnancy toxaemia include anything
that decreases feed intake (dental problems, lameness or other illness, low feed
availability or lack of feed, yarding overnight, very cold weather), anything that
increases energy requirements (twins,
cold weather, shearing, stressful handling, disease), obese animals and mature
age (older animals are more prone to
pregnancy toxaemia). Ensure to match
energy requirements with feed availability – you may need to supplementary
feed and ensure it is adequate, also consider pregnancy scanning for twins and
preferential feeding, keep handling of
stock during late pregnancy to a minimum and avoid allowing pregnant cows
and ewes to get too fat. If you have any
questions please do not hesitate to contact the clinic.