School Visit 29th February 2016

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I had a great time visiting the nursery class at St Mary & All Saints Primary School in Reading this morning, as part of their ‘Jobs people do’ topic.

I talked to the children about what vets and veterinary nurses do to help animals and how we can look after them and make them better when they are poorly, as well as preventing illnesses. We talked about the types of pet that everyone had at home, what they need and how to look after them

We then had a look at some X-rays to see if they could tell what was on the screen.

The children had the opportunity to listen to their own hearts using stethoscopes and to look at and handle models of bones and dog, cat and rabbit teeth.

We talked about being safe around dogs and how to be a ‘lamp post’ or a ‘tree trunk’ if they were scared by a strange dog.

The children also got to dress up as vets and veterinary nurses in some of our uniforms and have a go at bandaging our big GSD teddy – a big hit with everyone.

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Lungworm Awareness Month – March 2016

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Lungworms are a group of parasites that can affect both dogs and cats. Lungworms are much less common than parasites such as fleas, ticks and tapeworms, but the associated problems with a Lungworm infection can be far more severe than with other more common parasites. Canine and Feline Lungworms cannot be transmitted to people.

In the past, Lungworms were only found in a few places in the UK, but over the last few years they have become much more widespread across the whole of Britain including the Thames Valley region. It is unclear exactly what has caused the spread of Lungworms (and other parasites) but increased movement of pets around the country, as well as an increase in wildlife in urban environments is thought to play a big part; it is also thought that the recent mild temperatures and rainy weather has helped the spread.

Lungworms infect dogs when they ingest the intermediate host which is a slug, snail, frog or other mollusc and infect cats when they ingest a rodent or bird that has previously ingested a slug, snail, frog or other mollusc carrying the Lungworm larvae.

Fortunately there are treatments available from your veterinary practice that are easily applied and will prevent this parasite from becoming a hazard to your pet. Continue reading

Tooth Care For Dogs and Cats

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At Castle Vets in Reading, we see a huge number of pets every month with some form of dental disease. Periodontal disease is the most common dental condition and affects both dogs and cats and happens when plaque and tartar build up on the teeth causing tooth decay, infection and inflammation of the gums.

Did you know that by the age of 3 years, 80% of dogs and 70% cats have some sign of dental disease? If left untreated, dental disease can lead to premature loss of teeth and gum tissue. The bacteria in plaque can also spread to vital organs such as the heart, liver and kidneys leading to infection and further problems.

Common Signs Of Dental Disease 

  • Weight loss
  • Not eating well
  • Chewing food slowly or only on one side of the mouth
  • Rubbing the face
  • Bad breath
  • Chattering teeth
  • Increased salivation
  • Loss of coat condition
  • Bleeding gums
  • Inflamed (very red) gums
  • Receding gums
  • Plaque or staining visible on the teeth
  • Loose teeth
  • Missing teeth
  • Swelling on the side of the face (abscess)

If you notice any of these symptoms please take you pet to see your vet as dental problems can be very painful and lead to further complications very quickly.

Some examples of dental disease

Some examples of dental disease

Most Dental Disease Is Preventable

The good news is that most dental disease is preventable. It is a good idea to start preventative health care as soon as possible in order to help avoid putting your pet through lengthy dental surgery when he or she is older. As with humans, daily brushing will keep your pet’s teeth and gums healthy and help prevent bad breath.

  • Brushing can be started at any age but should always be introduced slowly.
  • Remember to reward your pet after brushing his or her teeth.
  • Always use a pet toothbrush because they are designed with the shape of your pet’s teeth in mind, so will do a much better job than a human toothbrush.
  • Always use pet toothpaste. Human toothpaste can be harmful to pets.

How to brush your pet’s teeth

Gradually build up the following stages over a period of 1-2 weeks until your pet is happy with the procedure. It is really important that you remember to reward your pet after each session to encourage acceptance.

Stage 1 – Without using a brush, gently stroke the outside of your pets cheeks with your finger and try lifting each lip slowly for about 10 -20 seconds.

Stage 2 – Repeat stage 1 and also offer your pet a small amount of pet toothpaste on the end of your finger or a toothbrush and let them lick it off. (At Castle Vets we recommend C.E.T. Toothpaste and Logic Oral Hygiene Gel for tooth brushing)

Stage 3 – Repeat stage 2 but this time start to gently run your finger or toothbrush, with a small amount of toothpaste, over your pet’s teeth for about 10-20 seconds. Don’t press hard onto the teeth or gums, just use light forward, backward, up and down motions.

Stage 4 – Repeat stage 3 with the toothbrush, adding another 10-20 seconds to the time spent brushing. You can now start to add in circular motions over the teeth and gums with the toothbrush.

Stage 5 – When your pet is comfortable with tooth brushing, you can build up to 1-2 minutes a day on each side of the mouth. If your pet won’t stay still for that long you could try doing one side in the morning and the other in the evening.

brushing teeth

Hints And Tips For Successful Brushing 

  • The daily brushing procedure should be an enjoyable experience for your pet. If you follow up each brushing session with a really good reward your pet is more likely to accept the procedure. For cats this could be a bit of tasty fish or a cat treat, for dogs you can use food treats or follow brushing with a walk or a play session.
  • Take things slowly with your pet when you initially start brushing. If your pet becomes uncomfortable with a stage, go back to the previous stage and try again. If your pet becomes distressed at the procedure, stop. If you continue or force your pet the whole procedure will just become more difficult.
  • Try to choose a time of the day when you can spend a few minutes of relaxed contact with your pet, rather than trying to fit it in when you are rushing about.
  • Find a position that is comfortable for your pets. With dogs you could try lying them on their side with their head on your lap so you have easy access. With cats sometimes less restraint is better; a cat that enjoys the taste of the toothpaste may just let you raise the lips and brush.
  • The small teeth at the front of your pet’s mouth (incisors) tend to be more sensitive than the rest of the teeth, so don’t start brushing these until your pet is comfortable with having the rest of their teeth brushed.
  • The outer surfaces of the upper teeth are the ones that tend to attract the most plaque, so these should be given the most attention – fortunately they are also the easiest to get to.
  • You don’t necessarily need to brush the insides of your pet’s teeth as your pet’s tongue and the toothpaste will do a fairly good job there.
  • Make sure you include the gums when brushing teeth as the gum line is as important to keep clean as the teeth.
  • Some cats hate the idea of finger brushes. With these cats try a small piece of gauze over your little finger, it should be abrasive enough to clean the teeth but will be far less invasive.
  • We recommend you use a finger brush or a piece of gauze for tooth brushing because you will be able to feel exactly where the brush is going and the pressure you are applying. Long handled toothbrushes can bump and bruise gums which will upset your pet. We don’t recommend the use of electric toothbrushes on your pet as they can be too harsh on the teeth and gums.
  • If your pet won’t tolerate brushing at all don’t worry, please come in and have a chat with one of our veterinary nurses about alternative methods. Nothing is as good as brushing but some of the alternatives are far better than doing nothing at all.
Toothbrush types

There are many different types of pet toothbrush available for pets. Ask one of our veterinary nurses for advice on the most suitable one for your pet.

What You Feed Your Pet Can Make A Difference

Your pet’s diet plays a major role in the development of plaque and calculus. Soft or sticky foods should be avoided, especially if you cannot brush your pet’s teeth. Commercial dry pet foods are not enough, simply because the biscuit just crumbles when your dog or cat chews their food,  so they do nothing to clean the teeth. A specially formulated ‘dental’ prescription diet called Hills t/d is available at Castle Vets. Hills t/d has a special fibre-matrix structure that grips the tooth all the way to the gum-line when the pet bites into it. These fibres scrub tooth surfaces to remove bacteria-laden plaque as the pet chews. The biscuit size is also larger than most pet foods to encourage chewing instead of just swallowing the biscuits. The Hills Vet Essentials range also have larger biscuits with a similar formula.

Hills td diet

Alternatives To Brushing

Although nothing beats brushing, we understand that some pets will just not tolerate it. Fortunately there are a few of other ways that you can help your pet including dental gels and mouth washes and special diets.

Logic oral hygiene gel is a medicated dental gel that helps prevent the formation of dental plaque and fights bad breath. The multi-enzyme system in Logic Oral Hygiene Gel supplements the animal’s own defence mechanism to help fight harmful bacteria in the mouth. The gel also contains a surfactant which ensures that the active ingredients remain in contact with the teeth and gums and mild abrasives that help break down existing plaque. Logic is ideally used as a toothpaste with brushing but, in the case of a pet that won’t accept brushing, it will still be beneficial due to the abrasive and enzymatic properties.

C.E.T. Oral Hygiene Rinse is a dental mouthwash and breath freshener for cats and dogs. It provides antibacterial action and plaque prevention and is effective in helping maintain oral health when used daily with or without brushing.

ProDen Plaque Off is a supplement that can be added to the pet’s food once daily. When the unique agents of Plaque Off reach the saliva they effectively prevent oral bacteria from producing plaque and tartar. Existing tartar becomes porous and loosens by itself or is easily removed through normal brushing of the teeth. Improvements are normally seen within 5-8 weeks. Plaque Off is also made from 100% natural ingredients. (Plaque Off may not be suitable for use in animals with hyperthyroidism or other chronic diseases due to the iodine content, so check with your vet first).

All of these products are available at Castle Vets

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Just a few of the brushing alternatives available for cats and dogs.
If your pet will not tolerate tooth brushing, ask your veterinary nurse which alternative product may help you keep your pet’s teeth clean.

A word about dental chews and treats

Chewing produces saliva, which can help protect your pet’s teeth and some types of dental treats can help to reduce tarter build-up and plaque. Rawhide chews, dental chews, dental biscuits and chew toys are all helpful as long as they encourage sustained chewing. Watch out for the calorie content of these products; they can range from 30 kcal to 300 kcal per product! So it is really important to remember to reduce your pet’s normal food accordingly to avoid weight gain – if in doubt ask a veterinary nurse to work out the calorie content and advise on how much you should reduce your pet’s food by. You should also consider the size of the chew as well; if your pet can swallow it in one bite, it is not really going to do anything to help keep his or her teeth clean.

There is a huge range of dental chews available for cats and dogs. But not all of them will work for your pet

There is a huge range of dental chews and toys available for cats and dogs

We hope you enjoyed this article on dental care.

At Castle Vets we offer free dental appointments with our veterinary nurses so you can discuss your pet’s dental health. The veterinary nurse nurse will give your pet a dental check and advise you on how to keep your pet’s teeth and gums in tip top condition. Please contact us to make an appointment.

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Caring For Your Guinea Pig

Caring For Your Guinea Pig

Guinea pigs, or Cavies, are small, sociable, friendly, chatty, adorable and inquisitive. There are over 40 different breeds of guinea pig recognised by the British Cavy Council and these include many different colours, coat types and coat lengths so there is definitely a guinea pig to suit everyone.

With their gentle natures they make great pets and, if given a lot of love and attention, can make wonderful companions for both adults and children (an adult should always supervise the care and any interactions between children and their pets). Guinea pigs live on average for 4-8 years and owning them is very rewarding, but it is also a big responsibility and commitment in terms of care and finances, so please think about this before you buy your guinea pigs.

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Guinea pig varieties – courtesy of Intervet

Guinea pig history 

Guinea pigs have certainly been around people for a very long time and have played an important role in the culture of many indigenous groups in South America, not only as a food source but also in medicine and in religious ceremonies; statues depicting guinea pigs that date from around 500 BC to 500 AD have been unearthed in Peru and Ecuador and it is said that the Moche people of ancient Peru often depicted the guinea pig in their art.

The guinea pigs that we now keep as pets are descendants of wild guinea pigs found in the Andes that were introduced to Europe in the 16th century.  No one knows exactly where the name Guinea Pig came from, but in the 16th century traders brought guinea pigs over from South America to Europe and it is possible that they stopped at Guiana on their journey, which may have led to people thinking this is where they came from. It may also be a reference to coin known as a Guinea, which could have been the price of the “friendly rodent that squeaks like a pig”.

Guinea pigs were kept as pets by the aristocracy and became even more popular when it was discovered that Queen Elizabeth I kept one as a pet too.

Guinea pigs need company (but not from rabbits!)

In South America, wild cavies live in burrows in rocky areas, savanna, forest edges, and swamps, they are very social and live in groups of up to 10. Pet guinea pigs do best when housed in groups of 2-3 or more of the same sex or neutered. They also love plenty of human company and gentle handling, chatting and stroking.

Guinea pigs and rabbits should not be housed together
  1. They have different dietary needs and guinea pigs cannot synthesise vitamin C which must be provided adequately within their diet.
  2. Rabbits may injure guinea pigs by kicking them with their powerful back legs, by jumping on them, or by trying to mate with them.
  3. Rabbits may bully guinea pigs, which can make them distressed if they cannot get away.
  4. Rabbits carry a bacteria called Bordetella Bronchiseptica and while this does not harm the rabbit it is the most common No bunniescause of respiratory disease in guinea pigs and can make them very poorly (cats and dogs can also carry this bacteria).
  5. Rabbits behave and communicate in very different ways to guinea pigs, so they don’t understand each other’s behaviour and therefore do not make ideal companions.

Feeding

Guinea pigs have evolved to be able to extract all their nourishment from the poor quality vegetation that is often the only source of food available to them in the wild. This means that they require a diet that is low in calories but high in fibre.  Guinea pigs also require a diet that is rich in vitamin C because unlike most other mammals, they cannot synthesise this themselves (we humans can’t either!).

Dietary problems are one of the main causes of most illnesses and problems that we see in guinea pigs at Castle Vets and a poor diet can lead to obesity (and its related complications), soft stools, diarrhoea, fly strike, scurvy and bone and teeth problems.

The following feeds are listed in order of importance
  1. Water – fresh water should be provided daily and bowls and bottles cleaned regularly.
  2. Hay – fed Ad Lib. the fibre contained in hay is extremely important to the guinea pigs diet. Dried grass can also be fed in unlimited quantities.
  3. Fresh vegetables – a minimum of 3 different types daily, veg is an important source of vitamins. Variety will be appreciated by your guinea pigs, but remember to introduce any new veggies one at a time and in small amounts.
  4. Fresh fruit – Don’t over do the fruit as although your guinea pigs will love it, it contains lots of sugars and can lead to obesity and dental problems.
  5. Dried food – guinea pig pellets are better than the muesli versions of dried food as they prevent selective eating. Dry food should only make up a small percentage of your guinea pigs daily diet.

Your guinea pigs will also love to graze on fresh grass when they are out and about. They will also enjoy dandelions, dandelion leaves (care should be taken to ensure they don’t eat too many though) and clover.

gpig fruit and veg

Handling

Guinea pigs are ‘prey’ animals and are genetically programmed to always be on the lookout for and run away from danger, which can mean that it may take a little while for your guinea pig to learn to trust you. Approach them by letting them know you are there and by moving your hands towards them from the side, rather than from above. Try to offer them a really tasty piece of food while you are handling them so that they learn to associate being picked up and cuddled with a positive experience.

When you pick up your guinea pig always do it by placing one hand under the chest and use the other to support their hind quarters – always make sure you have a firm hold of your guinea pig while you are cuddling them, as falling from a height can injure them.

If children are  handling or cuddling a guinea pig it is best for them to do so while sitting on the floor or on a low chair.

Often if you sit on the floor quietly, your guinea pigs will come to you when they want some attention (or treats!).

Housing

Traditionally Guinea pigs have always been kept in hutches in the garden, however guinea pigs are just as happy (if not happier) when kept indoors. Wherever you decide to house your pets, there are a few things that need to be considered

1. Hay and straw are generally good materials for bedding, and the bottom of the hutch or enclosure can be lined with newspaper. Wood shavings as sawdust are not recommended as they have been linked to causing respiratory problems in small mammals. Other popular bedding materials include

  • Fitch – recycled perforated paper, it is very absorbent and is actually marketed for horses.
  • Finacard – dust free cardboard bedding.
  • Megazorb – made from wood pulp, highly absorbent and safe for use with small animals.
  • Fleece/Vetbed/Towels – commonly used for indoor guinea pigs This keeps guinea pigs dry and is soft on their feet also. You do need to supply an area for foraging in (i.e., hay)  if using these materials.

2. Enclosures/hutches should have a minimum floor area of 2ft x 4ft with a height of at least 40cm (the bigger the better) There are a wide range of hutches and indoor accommodation available for Guinea pigs but please remember that most of the cages available from pet shops are far too small for  them.

There are many different types of cage for your guinea pig3. The cage and exercise areas, including the wire mesh, feeding bowls, bottles and toys should be thoroughly cleaned once a week using a pet safe disinfectant. Rinse the cage and allow it to dry properly before putting your guinea pigs back inside.

Exercise

Guinea pigs are surprisingly active and can happily mooch around for up to 20 hours per day, so they will need plenty of space for exercise and toys for stimulation.

  • The exercise area should be at least 2 metres long, 1.25m wide and 0.6m high to give your Guinea pig plenty of space.
  • They should have an outside space for when the weather is nice and an inside space so that they can get exercise in cold or wet weather.
  • The exercise space will need to be secure to protect your piggies from getting into trouble, escaping or being attacked by predators. People may tell you that guinea pigs don’t jump, but they definitely can.
  • You will need to provide toys and hiding places such as tunnels or pipes to crawl through and cardboard boxes to hide in or chew. A link to a supplier of guinea pig toys can be found at the bottom of the page.
  • The exercise area should include some shade from the sun and shelter if the weather is windy or wet.

Amys Piggies

Training

Guinea pigs can be trained to do tricks with a little patience and some tasty food rewards. Training is great mental stimulation for your pets and will really improve your bond.

Daily Health Care

  • Bottom – Guinea pigs normally pass faecal pellets as well as the softer caecotrophs which they eat.Guinea pigs with consistently dirty bottoms may be suffering from an illness that causes loose faeces or diarrhoea, or they may be overweight and cannot groom themselves properly. Your pet’s bottom should be clean and dry with no mats or faecal matter stuck around it which could attract flies to lay their eggs leading to fly-strike. Dirty bottoms can be cleaned using cotton wool soaked in warm water and then thoroughly towel drying the area afterwards (do not use a hair dryer on your guinea pig).
  • Breathing – Guinea pigs breathe a lot faster than we humans do (50-150 breaths per minute!). Check for any signs that your pet may be having difficulty, such as wheezing noises or panting which may indicate a respiratory problem or infection.
  • Coat – Guinea pigs should be groomed daily (go on they enjoy it!) and their coat should look and feel clean and healthy. Most guinea pigs groom themselves really well so if you notice that your pet is not looking after him or herself this may indicate a health problem. Any mats that you find in the coat should be carefully groomed out because they will only become worse and very uncomfortable if they are left. Any signs of excessive moulting/shedding or any bald patches may indicate a parasite or health problem.
  • Ears – The ears should be clean and dry with no waxy or mucky discharge or crusting.
  • Eating and Drinking – Make sure your guinea pig is eating and drinking well every day.
  • Eyes – The eyes should be clean, clear and bright. Any discharge could indicate an infection such as conjunctivitis or a blocked tear duct.
  • Feet – The feet should be clean and dry. Sore patches or faecal matter on them may indicate a health problem (or that you need to clean out your pet’s toilet area more often!). Make sure that your pet’s nails are not too long – nail clipping can be done at home if you have someone to help hold your guinea pig for you. Your veterinary nurse can show you what to use and how to do it properly.
  • Mouth – Check that the upper and lower front teeth (incisors) meet properly in the middle and that they are not overgrown as this may prevent your guinea pig from eating properly and could cause infections if the teeth are rubbing other areas of the mouth. Make sure there is no excess salivation or dribbling which may indicate that there is a problem with your guinea pig’s teeth or gums.
  • Movement – Look for any signs that your pet might be lame (limping) when moving about his or her hutch or exercise area, or that your pet is reluctant to exercise.
  • Nose –The nose should be clean and dry with no discharge. Any snuffling, discharge or crustiness may indicate a problem.
  • Skin – The skin should look clean and healthy. Stroking your guinea pig will help you feel for any lumps, bumps or wounds on the skin; if you find anything out of the ordinary make a note of exactly where it is before contacting your vet as small lumps can be difficult to find again! Flaky or dry skin could also indicate poor diet or a parasite problem.

GP groom

Common illnesses and problems

 On the whole guinea pigs are usually relatively healthy pets and the problems or illnesses that they suffer from are often as a result or poor husbandry or nutrition.

  • Abscesses (an infected swelling within a body tissue, containing pus)  – these can affect the skin, teeth, muscles and lymph nodes. They are usually caused by infected wounds and bites or as a result of a dental problem.
  • Dental problems – overgrown or sharp teeth can be very painful and may need to be filed down by a vet. This is often a result of not eating enough hay and dried grass.
  • Gut/intestinal problems – these are usually caused by poor diet or too many watery vegetables or sweet treats, but they can be caused by bacterial infections and imbalances. Symptoms can include inappetance, diarrhoea, soft stools, constipation, hunched posture (pain).
  • Mouth sores – this is usually as a result of a dental problem or from eating too many watery or sugary foods.
  • Obesity – this is a common problem in all pet animals and can lead to heart and respiratory problems, flystrike (because they can’t clean themselves properly), sore joints and skin sores and bumble foot.
  • Parasites – Guinea pigs can be infested by mites and fleas and get fungal infections such as ringworm. Symptoms include hair loss, scratching, crusty/scabby skin and open sores or wounds caused by scratching.
  • Respiratory problems – these can be caused by a number of bacteria, including Bordetella, which is carried by rabbits. If your guinea pig is wheezing or has noisy breathing he needs to be seen by a vet.
  • Scurvy (Vitamin C deficiency)  – Guinea pigs cannot make vitamin C themselves, so it needs to be provided in the form of a healthy diet. Symptoms include poor coat, inappetance, diarrhoea, reluctance to walk, painful, swollen feet or joints and hemorrhages and ulcers on the gums or skin.
  • Urinary Problems – guinea pigs can develop cystitis which may be caused by a urinary infection and/or urinary calculi (stones), which normally form in the bladder but can form in the kidneys too. Symptoms include inappetance, blood in the urine, straining to pass urine, a hunched posture or a complete lack of urine production.

If you suspect that your guinea pig is unwell or may have any of the problems listed above, please don’t delay and get him or her to the vet as soon as possible for a check over.

Colin

Colin showing us his teeth

Neutering guinea pigs

Neutering prevents unwanted pregnancies and also means that males and females can live together. Neutering also helps control the number of unwanted pets in this country, reducing the numbers being abandoned, neglected and put to sleep. It is very uncommon to neuter a Sow (female) and is usually only necessary for medical reasons. More commonly the Boars (male guinea pigs) are neutered so that they can live with females – this group dynamic works really well.

If you are going to have your guinea pig neutered then be aware that every anaesthetic carries a risk of complications and death (this is the same with any species). It is worth checking that your vet has equipment and facilities for the anaesthesia and recovery of small animals and that they are experienced in the anaesthesia and neutering of guinea pigs.

Castle Vets and guinea pigs

At Castle Vets we  have a specialised ward for our Exotic patients (Guinea pigs, rabbits, rodents and birds) enabling us to keep them completely separate from natural ‘predator’ animals such as dogs and cats. This means that our exotic patients can receive the care they require in an appropriate, warm and secure environment and undergo far less stress when hospitalised for any length of time. We are also very pleased to have veterinary nurses with special interests in exotic pet care, medicine and anaesthesia.

Useful links

Rodents with attitude – a very informative guinea pig site and forum

British Cavy Council – information on the various breeds and showing guinea pigs

The importance of microchipping your pet

dog cat rabbit missing

Pets go missing from home for a whole variety of reasons and stray animals are usually picked up by members of the public, then passed on to the local dog wardens, animal charities or taken to the veterinary surgery if they are injured. If they cannot be identified by means of a microchip or id tag, sadly they may never be reunited with their owners and often end up in rescue centers to be re-homed, or even put to sleep if there is no room for them or they are ill.

Every year in the UK, animal welfare organisations estimate that over 180,000 pets go missing and that only half of these pets are ever reunited with their owners because there is no way of knowing who they belong to. According to the Dogs Trust Stray Dog Survey 2015, dog wardens reported that only 20% of the dogs taken by local authorities last year were microchipped (Sadly there is no such data kept on cats). Animal Search UK reports that they have between 20 and 100 missing and found pets registered with them every day and in the last 3 months alone, we at Castle Vets have had reports of 34 missing pets!

Pets go missing from home for a whole variety of reasons but some of the most common ones are

  • Hormone related – Male animals wander off after scenting a female in season, or females in season wander off to find a mate.
  • Fear – Animals may run off after hearing a particularly loud and scary noise, such as fireworks or thunder. Or a stranger in the home may scare them away.
  • Moving house – Animals may become lost after a house move when they are in unfamiliar territory.
  • Natural inquisitiveness – You pet may start following a scent or another animal for a while and get lost.
  • Illness – Poorly animals may become disorientated and get lost easily, others may have had an accident and be unable to get back home before someone picks them up and takes them to the local vet.
  • Theft – unfortunately people stealing pets is still on the increase especially cute younger animals and in pedigree or working breeds that can be sold on.

Continue reading