Happy autumn all! I hope you’ve been enjoying the autumnal colours and long dog walks, followed by cosy fires and something warm to drink…!

Autumn can be a rough time of year for pet owners because of fireworks – the ‘season’ is really from the end of October through to the New Year. Our nurse Kerry has been putting lots of helpful info up onto our Facebook page about this so do have a look.

There are various medications and diffusers that we can try, plus more general advice. The overall issue is that firework phobias (as they’re known) only get worse year by year so in general it can’t be avoided. By all means, give us a call for advice if you’d like or you can pop in for a vet appointment to discuss it too.

In terms of cases this autumn we’ve had some crackers.

Milly is a 10-year-old border terrier. She came to us as she wasn’t feeling well, she had an upset tummy but nothing else specific. After doing some scans we realised that the was something irregular in her liver.

By the next day, it was clear that Milly was extremely unwell and we made the big decision to surgically open up her abdomen to investigate what was going on. We found that Milly’s gall bladder had gotten blocked and had burst! This is a very serious situation but luckily we were able to remove the gallbladder entirely (dogs are fine without a gallbladder) and clean up the mess. It was a 4-hour operation but I am very pleased to say that Milly made a full recovery and was on great form within just a few days.

Treacle is a 6-year-old Devon Rex cat. She went out for an explore one day but something serious happened – she came back very lame on one of her back legs. Unfortunately, she had broken her shin bone, the tibia.

This is often the story with these cases, we don’t know how or why these injuries happen – off they go exploring and as their owners, we can’t tell what they’ve been up to. Unfortunately, Treacle’s break was a very bad one, with multiple breaks and cracks extending right down to her ankle joint. It was very difficult to repair but so far she has made an encouraging recovery and is using the leg well already. It will take at least 3 months for an injury like this to heal fully so Treacle has a long time to go yet but so far so good!

Tiger is a little Jack Russell who came in to see us making funny lip-smacking movements as though he had hurt his mouth.

To our great surprise, I found that he had a piece of stick wedged hard between the teeth in his upper jaw! With help from our nurse Lotte and a pair of forceps, I was able to retrieve the offending stick and all was well!

It is very satisfying to be able to sort problems out as quickly as this. As a point of learning though, we do unfortunately see our fair share of injuries caused to dogs by playing with sticks.

The general advice is to encourage them to play with toy rubber sticks instead as they will never cause injury…but dogs will be dogs so we can only do our best!

Finally, we are delighted to welcome a new vet to our team, Fiona. She lives locally and is a very experienced addition to our team. Fiona is with us Tuesdays and Thursdays and I know you will all enjoy meeting her.

I hope you and your pets all have a great autumn.


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