Arun Veterinary Group

Autumn Watch


With the days feeling really autumnal now comes a few potential hazards we should all be aware of. Autumn is certainly a beautiful time of the year when we are all enjoying walks in the leaves and with that the children are eagerly looking for conkers.

We all love collecting these shiny seeds, however these can potentially cause quite a problem to your dog if he or she happens to ingest them.
Firstly, and most obviously they are a choke hazard. Secondly these are the perfect size to cause the perfect blockage within a dogs intestine. If your dog happens to munch one up, then poisoning would be the next concern on the list. Conkers contain a chemical called Aesculin which is toxic.

Symptoms to look out for are: muscle tremors, abdominal discomfort, vomiting and diarrhoea, and in some more severe cases your dog may experience difficulty in breathing which can lead to sudden death.

Whilst the symptoms of toxicity can come on quite suddenly, if the conker has caused a blockage you may notice symptoms a few days down the line.
We would not recommend conkers are kicked or thrown for dogs in any situation. Watch your dog carefully for foraging and if your dog loves to retrieve then consider taking a safe toy to play with instead.

With the cooler months approaching and us all thinking about preparing for the winter ahead, many of you will be thinking of topping up your anti freeze.

Sadly our pets may be attracted to the smell and taste, especially cats. This substance is incredibly toxic and just a few laps of this chemical can be deadly to a pet.

Every year vets up and down the county see many cases of anti-freeze poisoning, most of which prove fatal. Almost all of these cases occur from a cat lapping a puddle containing spilt anti-freeze.

Please ensure you store this chemical responsibly and any spillages must be cleaned up. Under no circumstances use anti freeze in garden water features or near wildlife.

Symptoms to look out for include: lethargy, vomiting, ataxia (wobbly legs), seizures, kidney failure and death.

If you are concerned your cat has ingested anti freeze, please call us immediately.

Lastly, Halloween can be a fun time for us all, (not sure how fun it will be this year with the dreaded C word!) however this event can pose quite a risk and an anxiety to our dogs and cats.

1. Keep glow sticks well away from your pets. Both cats and dogs can easily chew through them ingesting the bright liquid inside which can cause them to salivate and foam.

2. If you want to use candles, consider using electric candles. Not only could they prevent a house fire, they can also prevent burnt paws and whiskers.

3. Decorations including fake cobwebs should be kept out of reach. Puppies and kittens are always tempted to investigate interesting looking items. String and stretchy type fabrics are very common types of foreign body we have to remove from intestines.

4. Although hugely popular with us, chocolate contains theobromine which is toxic to most animals. Symptoms of theobromine poisoning can be vomiting, diarrhoea, lethargy or hyperactivity. In some acute cases these symptoms can lead to death.

5. Unless your dog is used to it and appears to be unfazed, don’t be tempted to dress your pet up. A dressed up pet can cause a pet to received unwanted attention which not all pets will enjoy. Instead create them a safe space to retreat to, drowning out spooky sounds with music or the tv.

We hope these tips prove to be useful at what is a really, beautiful time of the year across the Sussex Downs.

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