"Paws For Thought"

As the glorious sunshine is finally back, I am sure many of you have started to book your summer holidays this year. For many of us making sure our pets are well cared for during this time is a vital part of the holiday organisation process.

We advise to make sure your pet's microchip details are up to date so that wherever your pets stay, you have peace of mind that they will be reunited with you if anything were to happen whilst you were away. Occasionally pets may become 'confused' when you go away and so it is not an uncommon time for our pets to wander off. If you had your pets micro-chipped at Ashman Jones then their microchip will be registered to a company called Identibase (previously called Anibase) All you have to do to update the microchip details is go to https://www.identibase.co.uk/# . Updating an address can be done either online following the link above or you can print and complete the form to send to them. Simply calling to change your email address or number is free of charge, however if you need to change your address, the one off payment of £15.95 entitles you to the lifetime Identibase membership, which means any further changes will be at no extra cost. Alternatively you can become an Identibase Premium member which means that Identibase will aid in finding your missing pet, such as by sending alerts up to a 20 mile radius and creating posters.  However not only is making sure the details are relevant so that you can be reunited with your loved one, the law also states that 'it is a legal requirement that all dogs are micro-chipped and registered on a microchip database with current and correct contact details'.

As we are now in the season of Spring, our gardens are looking beautiful with blooming flowers and blossoming trees, however there are a variety of plants that owners should be aware of, that can cause harm to our furry friends.

Daffodils are found everywhere in the Spring time, however the whole plant is poisonous, particularly the bulb itself, so be careful if your dog likes to dig! Ingestion of this plant can result in vomiting, diarrhoea, depression, tremors and heart problems. Another flower to look out for are Lilies, which are highly toxic to cats. It has been known that even one leaf can be fatal to your feline friend, however the whole of the plant can be dangerous is licked or ingested. If you have planted Tomato plants this year, then be aware! The stem and leaves of this plant contain Glycoalkaloids, which if eaten by your cat or dog, can be toxic. Symptoms from this can include lethargy, drooling, diarrhoea, vomiting and can occasionally lead to tremors and seizures. You should also be aware that mushrooms can be poisonous for our furry friends. Depending on the type of mushroom, the effects can vary, from diarrhoea and vomiting to liver and kidneys issues. If you have any growing in your garden or if you see some whilst walking your canine companion then stay clear of those 'fungi foes'.

'Would you like the good news or the bad news?' The sad news is that we have to say goodbye to our Head Nurse Debbie. I speak on behalf of the team when I say we will miss Debbie very much and it will be very strange here without her. We all wish her the best of luck for the future. The happy news is that we have a lovely Trainee Veterinary Nurse starting at the end of June called Mary-Jane. Mary-Jane has had a lot of experience working the night shift as a Animal Nursing Assistant, at a busy hospital practice. I am sure Mary-Jane's friendly personality will fit very well into the Ashman Jones team.

As we enter into kitten season I thought it may be a good time to talk to you about the importance of neutering. Sadly many kittens are left without a home as there are simply not enough suitable homes available for the large number of kittens born each year. Getting your 'Tom' cat castrated means that they will be less likely to wander off in search for a female in heat, less likely to fight with other males, therefore reducing the risk of them contracting Feline Aids and Leukemia viruses. It can also reduce the need they feel for spraying indoors to mark their territory. When the female 'Queen' cat reaches sexual maturity at around four months old, there is a constant risk of her becoming pregnant. Getting your 'queen' spayed will also greatly reduce diseases like mammary cancer or obtaining a Pyometra, which is an infection in the uterus.

We ask that all of our lovely Ashman Jones clients double check that the mobile numbers and email addresses that you have given to us are up to date, as we will soon be ' saving the trees'. Your furry friends booster reminders will soon be sent only via these two methods, instead of through the post.

From the second week of June. Widcombe Practice will be closed between 1pm-2pm every Tuesday and Thursday.

Until the next time here is your fact of the month...Usually a chicken with red ear lobes will produce brown eggs, and a chicken with white ear lobes will produce white eggs.

Warmest Wishes

Holly Smith @ Team Ashman Jones