Posts

Ask the Expert.. Mar Apr 2012

Dr KG Umesh (MVSc, MSc (UK)) is a Postgraduate in Clinical Medicine. He is working for WALTHAM as Regional Associate for South Asia.

Q: My cat is sneezing, has a runny nose and is coughing. Please help.
– Prashant Das, Kolkata

Dr KG Umesh: These signs are often caused by a combination of infectious diseases, with chronic recurrent viral infections complicated by secondary bacterial infections. Primary bacterial or fungal infections and non-infectious causes (foreign body, immune-mediated, dental disease, polyps, and growths) should be considered as well. Initial diagnostic testing is not indicated if clinical presentation fits with simple viral infection, but testing should be performed in complicated cases or if other causes are suspected. Isolation, good hygiene, and supportive care help control viral infections, and antimicrobial agents are often needed. Regular vaccination and other preventive health measures help. Please consult your vet for further treatment.

by‘WAGS’ For the wonderful vet | Mar Apr 2012

I’m: Komal Joseph Wags for the wornderful vet
My pet’s name: Jackey
My vet’s name: Dr Amber Mishra
Veterinary Clinic: Animal Care Centre (Veterinary Clinic), Rae Bareli
How I came across my vet: Through my friend circle
Do I visit the vet for regular check-up or only in case of medical condition: When required
How long have I been visiting my vet: Last five years
Toughest medical challenge faced by me and my pet: Nothing so far
Role played by my vet in helping to overcome it: Dr Mishra is helpful at all times.
A special quality about my vet which strengthens my faith in him: His constant watch on my pets is very assuring.
A ‘Thank You’ note for my vet: Thanks a lot for your dedicated work.


I’m: Vinita Patil
My pets’ names: Nawab and Trazan
My vet’s name: Dr Chirag Dave
Veterinary Clinic: Pet’s Clinic, Vadodara, Gujarat
How I came across my vet: Through a friend
Do I visit the vet for regular check-up or only in case of medical condition: Yes, I take my pets for regular checkups.
How long have I been visiting my vet: Since last five years
Toughest medical challenge faced by me and my pets: My lab retriever Nawab met with an accident as a speeding school van once hit him. He survived with major internal injuries and left him and me psychologically shaken for quite sometime.
Role played by my vet in helping to overcome it: Dr Chirag treated Nawab with the utmost care. Got him moving in a couple of hours! His assurance gave me mental stability & strength and he gave my pet a second life. He is one of the finest vets I have come across.
A special quality about my vet which strengthens my faith in him: He doesn’t treat animals as a means of his profession. I have learnt how to handle my pets through him. He has been a great guide to me and a god sent saviour for my pets.
A ‘Thank You’ note for my vet: The only thing I’d like to say to him is – “My dogs are healthy and happy all because of you. Thank you for all the guidance and care that you have showered on my pet.”


I’m: Shabnam Valson
My pet’s name: Spike
My vet’s name: Dr Uni
Veterinary clinic: Dr Uni’s Clinic, Kaushambi, Ghaziabad
How I came across my vet: Through a friend
Do I visit the vet for regular check-up or only in case of medical condition: Regular check-up
How long have I been visiting my vet: One year
Toughest medical challenge faced by me and my pet: Nothing serious yet
Role played by my vet in helping to overcome it: His role is always great
A special quality about my vet which strengthens my faith in him: He is very kind to animals and it makes them feel comfortable at his clinic.
A ‘Thank You’ note for my vet: Thanks Dr Uni… Spike loves you a lot!


I’m: Sandeep Dash
My pet’s name: Lucy
My vet’s name: Dr S K Ray
Veterinary Clinic: Dog Care Centre, Unit 4, Bhubaneswar, Khurda, Orissa
How I came across my vet: My vet is a very old practitioner in my area.
Do I visit the vet for regular check-up or only in case of medical condition: Only in case of medical condition.
How long have I been visiting my vet: Over the last 15 years
Toughest medical challenge faced by me and my pet: My pug once undergone a cesarean delivery
Role played by my vet in helping to overcome it: Dr Ray is very friendly with pets through which we overcome any medical challenges.
A special quality about my vet which strengthens my faith in him: Unconditional support and he is a solution to all types of vet-related problems.
A ‘Thank You’ note for my vet: Thank you for supporting us and I feel that my pet is in safe hands.

Ask the expert..| Mar Apr 2012

Dr K G Umesh (MVSc, MSc (UK)) is a Postgraduate in Clinical Medicine. He has been aask the expert 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.

Q: Please give me a feeding plan and quantity to feed a vegetarian diet to my five-month-old Boxer.
– Anirudh Paliwal, Hasetri

Dr KG Umesh: We all know that dogs are omnivorous, meaning they are capable of digesting and absorbing nutrients from plants as well as animals source. But it is important that the diet you feed your dog should be complete and balanced. No single ingredient/source of diet will provide all the nutrients and energy requirement of a dog. For example, cereals are rich in some vitamins but lack many nutrients required for a dog or puppy. Our research indicated that most home-made diets/foods fed to dogs in our country are inadequate and it is difficult even for an experienced breeder/pet parent to prepare balanced diet for puppies or dogs at home. Therefore, consult your vet who will help you to design a balanced diet using safe ingredients (considering your pet’s body weight and condition). Other option is to feed the vegetarian complete pet food from a reputed manufacturer.

Q: My six-month-old Labrador loves to chew and keeps picking up small things and chasing. How do I ensure that he does not swallow any object?
– Padmini Ramesh, Nagpur

Dr KG Umesh: It is normal for puppies to be ‘mouthie’. Most chewing behaviour is seen in young puppies due to their strong desire to explore. As dogs mature, this desire decreases and they are less likely to be destructive. This type of behaviour may start after a change in the dog’s routine or as a result of boredom. The dog will find it hard to distinguish between what it can and cannot chew; therefore having their own toys will help define suitable chewing items. Make sure the chew is large enough so that your dog can’t fit it completely into his mouth. When your puppy does any inappropriate behaviour, stop it immediately by telling the pup ‘No’ and distract his attention with a toy/chew. Puppies want to make their pet parents happy and you need to help them by your voice tone when they are being good. Exercise and play with your dog regularly to alleviate excess energy and provide positive interaction and most importantly reward your dog with praise for chewing on appropriate items.

Q: We want to bring home a pup. Please advice how do I ensure that we get a healthy pup.
– Dr Pawan, Chandigarh

Dr KG Umesh: Dogs come in a variety of different shapes and sizes, all with different characters and temperaments. Consider your own environment and the characteristics of your chosen breed and try to match up the two. The best place to obtain a pedigree puppy is from a recognised and reputable breeder. You may find breeders through other pet parents, your veterinarian, advertisements in newspapers and dog magazines or by visiting dog shows. You may also find a dog through one of the breed rescue societies or you may know someone whose female-dog recently had a litter. The risk of disease and stress-induced illness is greater for a puppy if you buy from a dealer who has bought in puppies from several sources (puppy farms). It is always best to see the mother if you are buying a puppy so you can check that she is healthy and has a good temperament. Don’t buy a puppy which is less than six weeks of age. Show the puppy to your vet before you bring him home.

Q: Pia, my seven-year-old female Pomeranian, is suffering from jaundice. She is under vet care. Do advice what precautions to take so she does not get a relapse and determine that her liver is strong.
– Rita Arora, Ahmedabad

Dr KG Umesh: If you have medications recommended or prescribed, continue them until otherwise directed. Do not stop just because symptoms are subsiding or your dog seems better, since it is often the medication that is helping. If you notice persistent signs or symptoms, worsening of such symptoms if they were already present or new symptoms, your veterinarian should be aware of them. They may not all go away after starting treatment, but they should improve. Weakness, poor appetite, abnormal behaviour or mental dullness, bleeding of any kind, swelling of any kind, distended belly, difficulty in breathing, increased drinking/urination, vomiting, or excessive drooling are some of the signs or symptoms that can occur due to liver diseases. Routine follow-up will be determined by your veterinarian and frequent rechecks/blood tests and adjustments of medication may be necessary, depending on your pet’s specific symptoms and severity of disease. Your veterinarian can suggest a prescription diet (dry or canned) or can give you a list of suitable ingredients to create a balanced diet if you wish to make it yourself at home.

Q: Posto, my Bernard, has developed a lump on his elbow, which is making it difficult for him to sit. What should I do?
– Himanshu Bagga, Haldwani

Dr KG Umesh: Large breeds commonly develop a non-painful, fluid-filled swelling (Hygroma) under the skin that commonly develop on elbow joint. Generally they do not pose a problem for the dog unless infected. Periodical aspiration, inserting a drainage and surgical removal of hygroma are some of the treatment options. The hygroma in dog is believed to be caused by repeated trauma on the skin over bony prominences, particularly in large/heavy breeds lying on hard surfaces. Therefore, prevent further trauma on elbow by providing soft padding over the elbow and avoid hard surfaces. There are also commercial products (elbow caps) available for protecting the elbows and for dogs with hygromas. Ask your vet.

Ask the expert – Mar Apr 07

Q : I feed Cerelac to my 8-week-old Pug puppy 4 times a day. We do not put milk in it as his stomach becomes loose. Please let me know about his feeding and nutrition needs till he is a year old. – Raashi Dewan, Delhi

Dr. K.G. Umesh : A nutritionally balanced diet is crucial for the healthy growth and development of a puppy in order to prepare him for an active, long, and healthy life. Our research has indicated that most home made diets/baby foods fed to dogs in our country are inadequate and growth, development and body/skin condition may not be optimum. Puppies grow very fast, almost 12 times faster than a human baby. Puppies nutritional requirements are different from adults and is almost twice that of adults. Therefore, manufactured pet foods like Pedigree is developed and formulated specifically to meet all the requirements of dogs in different lifestages. Continue feeding puppy food until age of 6-8 months and switch over to adult pet food after that. Any dietary change should be made slowly to avoid any upsets to your pet’s digestion. Gradually introduce the manufactured pet food over a 5-10 day period by mixing very small amounts of the food with old diet. Make sure that fresh water is available at all times.

Q : My 5-year-old Spaniel Holly has ticks on her body. Last year, because of ticks she had suffered from a blood parasite diseases and her platelet count had come very low. How can I prevent her from the dreadful ticks. – Arnav Kapoor

Dr. K.G. Umesh : A generalised tick life cycle consists of egg, larva, nymph, and adult. The tick feeds once in each stage before maturing to the next stage. Ticks lay their eggs (as many as 18,000 in some species) in sheltered areas on or near the ground. Seed ticks hatch from the eggs and climb onto grass to wait for a suitable host. Successful control of ticks depends on eliminating these pests from the dog and the environment. To control ticks or fleas on a dog, all animals in the household must be part of the flea/ticks control programme. There are two basic categories of flea/ticks control products: Adulticides—these products kill adult fleas and Insect Growth Regulators (IGRs)/Insect Development Inhibitors (IDIs)—these products prevent fleas from hatching or maturing. Thorough cleaning of the house and yard should precede any application of insecticides. The veterinarian will choose a product or products that combine safety, efficacy, and ease of use for the client. Often a combination of adulticide and an IGR or IDI is used.

Q : Foxy – my GSD – is a senior (10 years) – starts gasping for breath when I take him for a walk. Please advise. – Monica, Kolkata

Dr. K.G. Umesh : Considering his age and signs, all I can suggest is to take him to your vet to rule out common diseases like heart failure, COPD or tracheal collapse. Inflamed airways and kennel cough may also cause such symptoms. If he finds it difficult to breathe after walk, exercise/running etc, and the vet would consider heart problems like left side heart failure. Some dogs commonly have respiratory disease (i.e., collapsing trachea, COPD) coexistent with heart disease also. The best way to rule out all these diseases and to have specific treatment is get radiography, ECG and if possible echocardiography. Your vet might prescribe medications symptomatically till all the investigations are complete.

Q : My dog has started shaking his right ear. Is this a sign of ear infection? How often and how do I clean the earwax build up? – Desai, Bangalore

Dr. K.G. Umesh : Otitis externa or inflammation of outer ear canal is common in dogs. Many factors can cause or contribute to the development of this ear problem in dogs. Parasites, foreign bodies, endocrine problems, allergies, etc can be a cause. Like wise ear structure (for e.g., floppy ears), errors in cleaning ears/medications predispose dog to develop this ear problem. Dogs with recurrent ear infections should be evaluated for flea allergy, atopy (pollens allergy), food allergy and yeast infections etc. Recognition of underlying causes and treatment of all the factors contributing to the ear infection are the key to successful clinical management. Do not use cotton tipped applicators to clean ears! Depending on severity and duration of ear infection, your vet may perform variety of tests from examination of discharge to radiography. Therefore, I suggest taking him to your vet as early as possible to find underlying cause and appropriate cleaning and medication protocol.

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 presently working for WALTHAM as Regional Associate for south Asia.