A.R.M.Y. (Animal Rescue & Maintenance Youth), Rourkela recently organised ‘Colour Your Pet & Zoo Animals’ contest under the Wildlife Awareness & Rescue (WAR-II) programme for Eco Club during the Animal Welfare Fortnight 2014. Also, a pet awareness programme held at Deepika EM School and Gyana Jyoti Public School awarded students who adopted mongrels along with their purebreds. For more information, contact at: 7504038089 firstname.lastname@example.org
Q: I have a St Bernard pup who is five months old and refuses to go for a walk. Please advice the exercise, food and supplement needs for a St Bernard.
– Balraj, Jabalpur
Dr KG Umesh: A nutritionally balanced diet is crucial for the healthy growth and development of a dog in order to prepare him for an active, long and healthy life. Giant breeds like St Bernard take longer time to mature and generally become adult by age of 20-24 months. It is necessary to keep a puppy from gaining weight too quickly and becoming fat to avoid bone and joint problems. Puppies are fed 2-4 small meals per day to accommodate in their tiny stomachs. There is no need to add home food while he is feeding on a balanced pet food and clean fresh water. Overfeeding and excess calcium may result in skeletal or joint problems in the later part of the growing puppy’s life. I would suggest feeding ‘large breed puppy’ diets specifically designed for giant breeds, that are available in veterinary clinics and pet shops. In their first few months, puppies will get all the exercise they need from their naturally energetic play in the house, so you don’t need to give them any extra exercise. Limiting formal walks and training in the first 10 to 12 months of life will also help. They may need a 20 to 30 minutes jog every morning or a shorter walk combined with controlled training games. Repeat the workout later in the day.
Q: Rustam, my five-year-old Labrador, keeps wagging and knocking off objects. The tail area is swollen–the area also seems to hurt him, please help.
– Rohini Kapur, Meerut
Dr KG Umesh: Swelling in tail may result from injury, inflammation or infections of skin or bones. Get him examined by your vet before it worsens with movement of tail. You can try bandaging the swollen area to keep the tail immobile and until you take him to the vet.
Q: My 10 years old GSD is overweight, how do I reduce the weight?
– Rajat Singh, Patiala
Dr KG Umesh: Obesity is the most common canine nutritional disease in dogs. If you feed your dog a prepared pet food, the label on the package will provide a guideline as to how much to feed daily. These recommendations are a guideline only and you should make adjustments according to your dog’s individual needs. Senior dogs need approximately 20 percent less energy than adult dogs. Don’t forget to take into account the calories in treats and other tidbits he eats—they shouldn’t make up more than 10 percent of his daily calorie intake. Try to exercise your dog as much as he is able. The more muscle he maintains, the more calories he’ll burn and less fat he’ll carry. Not only that, when you fill his time with fun activities, he’ll spend less time hanging around the food bowl. This increased activity won’t just benefit your dog; it will benefit you as well. Instruct family members and visitors not to give your dog any treats or table scraps. Don’t give your dog one heaping bowl of food that he can eat whenever he wants. Instead, give him 2-4 small measured meals a day so you can regulate his portions. Start keeping a record of your dog’s weight. If possible, weigh him once a week. Keep lots of clean, fresh water available. Finally, be sure to take your dog to your veterinarian for a checkup and expert advice. Your vet may give you guidelines on exercise appropriate for your dog’s age and health as well as specific advice on how much he should be eating. He can also check for, and treat, any weight-related problems.
Q: Chulbul is a two years old Lhasa who has dark tear stains. We clean his eyes with cotton – but the stains don’t go. Do advice if we can apply eye drops and how do we clean the tear stains?
– K Malik, Nasik
Dr KG Umesh: Chronic tearing (causing streak and staining of hairs) in dogs is often the result of breed related conformational abnormalities. Shallow orbits and prominent globes with tight-fitting lids and small lacrimal lakes, inflammation of lacrimal apparatus, obstruction of nasolacrimal duct (drain tears to nostrils), any irritation or pain due to eye or eyelid diseases can cause an overflow of tears from the conjunctival sac. Conditions that lead to excessive lacrimation should be ruled out before congenital or acquired dysfunction of the lacrimal drainage system is diagnosed. Your vet runs tests to evaluate nasolacrimal drainage system patency. Determination of the cause is essential before treatment can be instituted and requires a mechanistic approach at first. Treatment is aimed at correcting the primary problem such as lubricant therapy for dry eye, or canthoplasty surgery for lagophthalmos and exposure, allowing more effective distribution of tears.
Q: I have two children (aged seven and ten years) and Pumkin is our seven months old Labrador who keeps jumping over them. How do I teach Pumkin not to jump on my children?
– Mrinalini, Chattarpur
Dr KG Umesh: Pumpkin has a very friendly behaviour of wanting to greet people when he sees them. The tricky part is teaching him that it is good to greet people, but not by jumping up. He may have been rewarded for jumping up as a puppy, whether this was intentional or not, he has learnt that this is an acceptable way to greet. Shouting at him after he has already jumped will just confuse him as he has already performed the action. The best method to try and stop the dog from jumping is to try and retrain him, and it is always easier to start at home. If he jumps up to greet kids when they enter the house, just ignore him and give him no attention. Wait until he has all four paws on the ground. Wait for him to sit. If he doesn’t sit, tempt him with a small treat to sit and then praise him. Crouching to greet the dog should automatically stop him from jumping as kids are at his level, but wait until he is sitting and before kids do this. Teach the children to fold their arms, stand still and shout ‘off’ whilst showing the dog no eye contact. The dog will soon get bored as the child is not interested enough. Once you have established a good routine at home, you can start introducing him to other people. Some advise squeezing the paws (until it is uncomfortable for the dog) every time he jumps. Lastly, obedience classes will also be beneficial to him, as there will be general advice for all types of training and modification.
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Paws and their stars
+ Wagging all around with Randeep!
+ The Dog Who Healed a Family
All About My Buddy:
My Name is: Pramit Kumar Dash
My Buddy’s Name is: Prince
My Buddy’s Breed is: German Shepherd
My Buddy is: Male
My Buddy’s Colour is:Black and tar
My Buddy’s Age is:Four years
My Buddy’s Favourite Treats: Ice cream and anything made of chicken.
My Buddy’s First Love: My parents – papa & mama.
My Buddy’s Funniest Habits: He takes a ball and runs away from us and turns back to see whether anyone is after him. If somebody is approaching him, he runs like an express train and plays hide & seek with us. Further, when he hears any new sound, his head and ears are alerted like a robot for encounter.
My Buddy’s Character Certificate Will Say: Very playful, naughty and intelligent.
BUDDY AND ME:
(Few of our favourite things)
List of Activities We Like Doing The Most: Spending time together to play, watch TV and working.
What We Indulge on Sundays: We go for long walks, eating and sleeping.
What is the Best Trick I have Taught Him: To find out anything, catching ball, crawling and salute.
I’m: Sylvia Fernandes
My pets’ name: Britney and Romeo
My vet’s name: Dr Natasha Couto
Veterinary clinic/hospital: Dr Natasha’s Pet Clinic, Mumbai
How I came across my vet: We live in the same locality.
Do I visit the vet for regular check-up or only in case of medical condition: For regular check-ups.
How long have I been visiting my vet: Nearly four years now.
Toughest medical challenge faced by me and my pets: Nothing so far now and I pray it never happens.
Role played by my vet: Dr Natasha is always helpful.
A special quality about my vet: I can trust her blindly. She is always
there when I need her and also she loves all types of animals, be it Pedigreed or strays.
A ‘Thank You’ note for my vet: Thanks dear doctor for always being there when my pets need you the most and curing them when they fall sick. A big ‘Thank You’ again!
I’m: Lakshmi Nair
My pets’ name: Whiskey & Spikey
My vet’s name: Dr Ramani Jairam
Veterinary clinic/hospital: Pluto Pet Clinic, Mumbai
How I came across my vet: I met him when I had my first baby Takila, a Doberman, that was about 15 years back.
Do I visit the vet for regular check-up or only in case of medical condition: Mostly in case of medical conditions.
How long have I been visiting my vet: About 15 years.
Toughest medical challenge faced by me and my pets: With Whiskey and Spikey nothing serious, but Takila towards the end of his life had gotten seriously ill. He wasn’t eating for more than a week and he was passing blood in his urine.
Role played by my vet: Dr Jairam and the other doctors at his clinic helped Takila live another 6-8 months, so that when he finally breathed his last it was from old age and not suffering from any illness. Dr Jairam had also conducted surgeries on Takila for bladder stones & hernia and treated him multiple times for maggots, which Takila was extremely prone to contracting despite the best care.
A special quality about my vet: In my experience there is no doctor who has the kind of compassion and connection to animals like Dr Jairam has. One visit to him and my babies get healthy again. My respect and gratitude to Dr Jairam cannot merely be conveyed in words.
A ‘Thank You’ note for my vet: Thank you doctor for always being available, for patient even when I called at 7 am out of worry and for taking such good care of Takila every time he was ill. Thank you for being such a great friend to my babies.
I’m: Sudipto Dutta
My pet’s name: Pluto
My vet’s name: Dr Asis Shadhukhan
Veterinary clinic/hospital: Dr Asis Shadhukhan Pet Clinic, Kolkata
How I came across my vet: Through local sources.
Do I visit the vet for regular check-up or only in case of medical condition: Regular check-ups.
How long have I been visiting my vet: After getting my new puppy Pluto; it has been around 16 months now.
Toughest medical challenge faced by me and my pet: My previous dog had eaten bleaching powder and saved by Dr Asis.
Role played by my vet: Dr Asis helped me a lot, more than my expectations.
A special quality about my vet: His first priority is his patient (Pluto).
A ‘Thank You’ note for my vet: I am very thankful and grateful to my vet Dr Asis.
I’m: Samrat Dey
My pets’ name: Skye and Joey
My vet’s name: Dr Bhupen Sahariah
Veterinary clinic/hospital: Animal Health Care, Darrang, Assam
How I came across my vet: A friend of mine informed me about Dr Sahariah when I was looking for a furry friend and thus Skye came to me.
Do I visit the vet for regular check-up or only in case of medical condition: I do visit him regularly.
How long have I been visiting my vet: I visit Dr Sahariah often, almost every 2-3 months, if I have to know anything regarding the health of Skye and Joey.
Toughest medical challenge faced by me and my pets: So far, both Skye and Joey are in good health.
Role played by my vet: Dr Sahariah is always there whenever I needed help.
A special quality about my vet: He knows the nerves of animals, whether it is a dog or cat or any other animal. He would make the animal so comfortable that I as a pet parent feel tension free.
A ‘Thank You’ note for my vet: I would like to thank you
Dr Sahariah for always ready to help my Skye and Joey whenever they needed your help. I would also thank you more and more for bringing Skye to me, who is my family member now. Thank you for patiently listening to me whenever I visited you and gave a solution to my worry regarding my two furry babies.
All you kiddies out there, we would love to know more about you and your dog. Do write in your poems, short stories or anecdotes of your loving doggy and see them splash here. Here is the checklist of information we would love to have, e-mail it to us at: email@example.com
All About My Buddy:
My Name is:Tanvi Moudhgil
My Buddy’s Name: Sheffy
My Buddy’s Breed is: Lhasa Apso
My Buddy is:.Male
My Buddy’s Colour is: Golden brown
My Buddy’s Age is: Two years
My Buddy’s Favourite Treat: Cheese
My Buddy’s Food: Chicken and cheese
My Buddy’s First Love: My female dog named Loosie. They both love each other.
My Buddy’s Character Certificate Will Say: Awesome blossom!
BUDDY AND ME:
(Few of our favourite things)
List of Activities We Like Doing The Most: Playing with ball and going for a walk.
What We Indulge on Sundays: We both love doing that.
What is the Best Trick I have Taught Him: He could jump into the car.
Dr K G Umesh (MVSc, MSc (UK)) is a Postgraduate in Clinical Medicine. He has been a lecturer in clinical medicine at Vet College in Bangalore for 15 years, and has won the ‘best teacher’ award in the year 2000. He is a member of European Society for Vet Dermatology and is currently working for WALTHAM as Regional Associate for South Asia.
Chang, our Pekinese, has a rash on the paw – he has been licking and biting it – pus had collected with bleeding. We took him to his vet who removed the pus and cleaned it, the infection has gone deep in his paw. Please do explain.
– Anisha & Ayesha, New Delhi
Dr KG Umesh: Pododermatitis refers to skin disease involving the feet (paws). Bacterial infections are frequently involved, although a variety of conditions may be underlying causes. For example, allergies and parsites can predispose pets to a variety of skin diseases, including pododermatitis. Embedded hairs or other foreign bodies (plant awns, splinters, thorns) can cause pododermatitis with nodules or draining tracts in the feet. Since several different disorders can cause the same symptoms in pododermatitis, your veterinarian may recommend tests (skin scrape, culture, biopsy) to find out the underlying cause. Treatment is aimed at correcting or avoiding any underlying conditions and at treating any infection present. Antibiotics given for several weeks are necessary to control bacterial infection. Disinfecting the feet can help healing, and soaking the feet daily in an antiseptic solution is also recommended. Some allergy or immune mediated cases may require corticosteroids or immunosuppressive drugs.
Is it safe for pets to travel? At times I don’t understand what my pet wants and what he wants us to do and say. How do I cope with this?
– Varun Vickraman, Bengaluru
Dr KG Umesh: I assume your query is related to travelling by road. Travelling for any good reason are best when you have your family with you and when your pet is as much a part of your family. Proper planning can make the travel experience better and less stressful for you and your pet. If your pet is not accustomed to car travel, take him for a few short rides before your trip. Help your new dog learn to rest calmly in a crate. This is an essential skill for dogs during travel, boarding and other situations. Take advice from your vet if your pet suffers any travel sickness. Stick to your regular feeding routine and give the main meal at the end of the day or when you reach your destination. Feeding dry food will be more convenient. Give small portions of food and water and plan to stop every two hours for exercise. Pets should not be allowed to ride with his head outside car window. Best never to leave your pet unattended in the car. When travelling by car, pack a simple pet first-aid kit that includes assorted bandages, antiseptic cream and an anti-diarrhoeal medication that is safe for pets.
Lulu has got surgery in one eye for cataract but she’s still cannot see from that eye. Need information on cataract.
– Esther Adiappa, Guwahati
Dr KG Umesh: Cataracts are common in dogs and some dog breeds are prone to hereditary cataracts. The most common cause of cataracts is heredity, where the likelihood of developing cataracts at some point in life is transmitted genetically. Other causes include diseases such as diabetes or can be a result of inflammation of the inside of the eye, called uveitis. With cataracts, black pupil normally looks cloudy or white in bright light. A similar but less serious condition that resembles cataracts is called ‘nuclear sclerosis’. This is a normal, older-age-related haziness of the lens. Nuclear sclerosis rarely compromises vision, is very common as dogs age, and progresses (worsens) much more slowly than true cataracts. The process that leads to cataract formation is irreversible. Therefore, no medication exists that can clear cataracts and the treatment of choice is removal of the cataract from within the eye with surgery. Treatment and outlook for other types of cataracts depend upon the cause. Surgery can involve removal of the cataract intact or the use of phacoemulsification, a process whereby ultrasonic waves are delivered within the eye to dissolve the cataract-containing lens, and the dissolved fragments are removed during surgery. Intraocular lenses, which are synthetic lenses that replace the lens removed with the cataract, can be implanted at the time of cataract removal for better near-field vision. Phaco surgery facilities are available in cities like Bengaluru, Chennai or Mumbai. Speak to your vet.
We are moving overseas. Our dog is an eight years old German Pointer and has been with us since she was a puppy. To get to where we are going she will have to be in her cage for at least 35 hours. Also, the climate will be very different and it will be very expensive to fly her. My questions are: Will our dog feel deserted if we leave her in a good home? How important is it for a dog to stay with their original pet parents? Appreciate your advice.
– Yair Kohn
Dr KG Umesh: Since your dog has become a true family member, it would be great moving with the family! Dogs are highly adaptable. It’s quite possible to meet a dog’s needs and live happily together in a home very different from the home you shared before. Use the crate to help the dog through any adjustment period, such as the separation anxiety that can occur temporarily in a new place. Moving with your dog can greatly enrich your life and make transitions less stressful for you. Give special treats in the crate, provide comfy bedding if the dog is old enough to refrain from chewing it, and keep the crate in a place the dog likes to be. Discuss with your vet on giving him a tranquiliser before boarding the flight, which has pros and cons. It’s safest for the dog to travel with you rather than being separately shipped. Contact your veterinarian and the authorities involved so that you can get the required health checks and certificates, make the necessary reservations, and arrange for every step of the dog’s safe journey. For your pet’s comfort, air travel on an almost empty stomach is usually recommended. The carrying container (transport crate) should be well-ventilated, roomy enough for the animal to move around, safe and have adequate food and water for the trip, with easily refillable containers for a long journey. After you move in to new house, your pet will need to sniff around the new house and yard in much the same way the humans will explore it with their eyes and hands.
My dog has been coughing. He also takes out white foamy like substance. Please advice if these are symptoms of kennel cough.
– Kusum Biswas, Kolkata
Dr KG Umesh: Dogs can develop cough for several reasons and cough is merely a sign of an underlying problem anywhere in wind pipe, food pipe, lungs or left heart failure. The kennel cough is generally caused by various combinations of bacteria and viruses and in pets under stress living in unhygienic conditions. Kennel cough is typically seasonal and respond very well to medications. The dry cough is also associated with another common condition is collapsing trachea which is frequent in toy and small breeds. This condition has non-productive (dry) cough. The cough is often described as a ‘goose honk’ because of it characteristic sound and the cough typically can be triggered by excitement, anxiety, exercise, eating and/or drinking, becoming overheated, and mild pulling on the collar. Most cases of cough respond favourably to rest and medications. These medications include sedatives; drugs that widen the air passages; expectorants, which break up the mucus in the lungs; and anti-tussives to relieve the coughing. Antibiotics may help if a bacterial infection is complicating problem. Kennel cough can be prevented by annual vaccination. Cough due to other causes like heart failure or tracheal collapse may require lab tests, imaging and bronchoscopy to confirm and initiate suitable medical management. Surgical intervention may be indicated with tracheal collapse and for tumours involving the respiratory system.
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