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December 2010

1. Sanford Veterinary Clinic is moving to an appointment system starting January 2010
2. Free! To a good home!
3. Celebrating Christmas
4. Tips for the silly season
5. Holiday checklist
6. Itching, scratching, licking, chewing
7. Summer beauty parlour

1. Sanford Veterinary Clinic is moving to an appointment system starting January 2010

The need for change has arisen due to two main factors. Firstly, the increased demand on our service, and secondly, our desire to provide our clients with a better service experience and shorter waiting times.

During times of heavy demand, it was not uncommon for between 10 to 15 patients to be waiting often from as early as 8.30am.  Appointments were booked on a ‘first come, first served' basis. While every effort is made to see patients with routine procedures such as vaccinations in a reasonable timeframe, this system sometimes resulted in delays we feel are excessive. At Sanford we understand that your time is important and we feel that we can better serve you, with an appointment system.

Of course urgent medical emergencies will always be seen immediately. As a result, the booking of all routine appointments will now proceed as follows:

Clients are encouraged to telephone Sanford Veterinary Clinic Reception on 9921 1797 a couple of days in advance to be booked into our computerised appointment system.

Sanford Veterinary Clinic is confident that these changes will result in a greatly improved provision of services to our clients.

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2. Free! To a good home!

Many kittens have been re-homed recently through the vet clinic. Just check out this happy kitty named ‘Grover' who has found a purrfect new home. We have two playful bundles remaining, a male tabby kitten and a female black kitten. They have been wormed and flea treated. If you can give or know someone who would like a little bundle of joy in their lives, call the clinic on 9921 1797

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3. Celebrating Christmas

We would like to wish you and your pets a very Merry Christmas and all the best for a happy and healthy new year.

To celebrate all pets big and small, we are asking you to send us your Christmas pet photos. Email us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it and as a Christmas special, we'll publish them on our My Pet Stories website.

We are also pleased to announce that you can now find My Pet Stories on Facebook. Click here to be taken to our facebook page and make sure you 'like' us!

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4. Tips for the silly season

With the silly season in full swing, it is easy to over indulge and following Christmas, it is not uncommon for us to see pets who have over indulged too.

For a safe Christmas, here are some things to watch out for:

 • Fatty Foods: may lead to vomiting and pancreatitis, a very painful and potentially serious condition. Be especially careful of relatives who love to feed your pets under the table

Cooked bones and BBQ skewers: may cause bowel blockages or perforations if ingested

Onions, macadamias, grapes and sultanas are all toxic: these are often found in foods you make at Christmas so beware of feeding leftovers, especially the Christmas pudding

Ribbon: wrappings can cause gut blockages if swallowed by any one of our furry friends

Christmas ornaments and lights: cats, kittens and inquisitive dogs, in their quest to explore anything new, may chew or swallow these

Chocolate: it's highly poisonous for dogs, so you'll have to eat it all yourself!

If you and your pet do gain a few extra kilos this Christmas, click on the YouTube video below to get you motivated again!


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5. Holiday checklist

Travelling with your pet this summer? Here is a checklist of essential items to make sure your pet is set for the trip:

1. Your pet’s health history including a current vaccination certificate
2. Your pet’s regular food and a little bit extra
3. Any medication your pet regularly requires- make sure you organise this well in advance
4. Tick prevention if travelling to a tick area - ask us for a recommendation
5. Collar with current identification and microchip details
6. Water bowl and water for the journey
7. The details of veterinarians along your planned route and at your destination
8. Motion sickness medication for dogs: Ask us for more information as this can greatly assist your dog
9. Pheromone spray to help reduce anxiety on the car trip and at your holiday destination
10. Pet carrier, seat belt, collars and leash as necessary

Remember: Never leave your pet unattended in the car. Even if it is not an extremely hot day, the temperature inside a car can reach dangerous levels in just a few minutes.

If you have any other questions about travelling with your pet, we are always here to give you advice. Happy holidays!

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6. Itching, scratching, licking, chewing

Does this sound like your pet? With the return of summer come the pesky things that cause allergies. Pets can be allergic to grasses, trees, plant pollen, dust mites and moulds. Fleas, ticks and other biting insects can also set off an attack of the itchies.

Itching quickly leads to self-trauma of the skin and this causes secondary skin infections. Unfortunately, treatment becomes more complicated and more costly once infection occurs. If you have an itchy pet, the earlier we intervene the better.

For those who own pets where the itch tends to hang around all summer long, you can breathe a sigh of relief. There are many medicines available to get your pet safely through the allergy season. One medication in particular may help reduce your pet’s response to the allergens that cause a problem, holding any irritation at bay.

Some dogs may find relief with an antihistamine, but dosages are different in pets than they are in people and the correct antihistamine must be tailored specifically for your pet.

In some cases, it is necessary to use a steroid, such as prednisolone to control your pet’s itching. When used correctly, these can settle the itch and help your pet feel more comfortable but we try to use the lowest possible dose to decrease any unwanted side effects.

Another approach is to have your pets skin tested to find out which allergens are a problem. Allergy vaccines are then formulated and your pet is put on a desensitisation program as a way to manage the allergies in the future.

Remember, never use your own medication on your pet, as not all 'people' medications are safe to use in animals. Ask us for information on a treatment approach that is best for your pet.

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7. Summer beauty parlour

Here are a few things to think about now that summer is here:

Care for the hair
- Keep your pet’s coat short; this not only helps keep them cool but it reduces the likelihood of grass seeds becoming stuck in the coat or in between the paws. It also means nasties such as paralysis ticks can be detected more easily - a tick check should be completed daily

- Limit baths to every 2-3 weeks and always use a pet approved shampoo. There are some excellent soothing shampoo and conditioners on the market that can help your pet's skin- ask us for information

Don't forget the ears
- Check your pet's ears regularly; summer allergies can cause havoc with ears, as can moisture from swimming and rogue grass seeds that find their way down the canal

- If your pet is shaking their head or scratching at the ears, arrange an appointment with us as soon as possible as the sooner we start treatment, the better

- Ask us for a suitable ear cleaner for your pet's ears to keep bacteria and yeast away

Flea check
- Fleas are not always easy to find, look for flea dirt (flea faeces) in your pet's coat. These appear as 'black specs' in the fur and appear especially above the tail region. If you dampen a tissue and touch the black specs they will turn red as they are simply digested blood

Parasite prevention
- Keep up with your regular parasite prevention; fleas, ticks, intestinal worms and heartworm all need to be considered and we can help you get your pet on the most suitable parasite prevention program

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  Sanford Vet clinic

42 Sanford St
Geraldton, WA 6530

PH: 9921 1797



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