"Paws For Thought"

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The soaring heat has left many of our pets struggling to cope this summer. It is not only our cats and dogs that are effected but our bunnies too. Pet rabbits find the direct sun unbearable on a hot day and temperatures over 27 degrees can lead to severe heat stroke. This is due to the fact that our rabbits our unable to cool themselves down through panting or sweating.

Preventatives of causing our bunnies to over heat include making sure there are shaded areas available at all times, along with helping to cool our furry friends down by freezing bottles of water and placing them in your rabbits enclosure for them to lie against. The stress of the heat can also increase the chance of our rabbits getting Ileus. Ileus is a condition which happens, normally when a rabbit is not eating enough, when the normal movement of the gut stops. If this happens the intestines produce a build up of excessive gas which prevents the rabbit from eating further and causing a lot of pain. If your rabbit stops eating or pooing for an abnormal amount of time then they should see a vet as soon as possible to prevent gut stasis.

Another concern that bunny owners have this time of year is 'the dreaded' fly-strike. Flies are attracted to any moist, dirty or scented area as this is the perfect place for them to deposit their maggot laying eggs. This normally tends to be around the rabbit's back end as they are attracted to the feces and urine soaked areas. The hatched maggots will start to eat away at the flesh causing a lot of pain for our bunny rabbits and in some cases shock.

It is important that we keep their enclosures as clean as possible and check our bunnies on a daily basis as fly-strike can progress very quickly. Elderly and Obese rabbits are more prone to getting Fly-strike due the fact that they can not reach round to clean themselves. A good diet is vital for preventing runny poo's, which can get stuck to our bunnies bottoms. A rabbits diet should consist of 85 – 90% hay, grass and dried grass and 20 – 25g per kg of nuggets per day, although this may not seem very much, it is the average amount needed to keep them at a healthy weight. Leafy greens are also a nutritious extra which should be provided along with a constant supply of clean fresh water. Preventative treatments are available for fly-strike such as Rear-guard which will help to keep those horrid flies away!

It has been found in a recent study that half of cat and dog owners are not aware that their little furry friends can get allergies too. Just like us, some cats and dogs are prone to allergy reactions due to seasonal changes, from pollen and grasses. Commonly the first signs we notice is our pets excessively scratching or chewing at their skin due to irritation and inflammation. Other signs can include hair loss and scabbing. If you are worried that your little one may have an allergy, and you want to ease their discomfort, then feel free to book an appointment to see one of our Vets.

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I bring good news! Our Amnesty month is back for July. This means that if your cat or dogs booster had slipped your mind then you can restart the course again (two vaccinations) for the price of one booster. For our special Best Friend Club members, as you already get one free each year, this means that restarting the vaccination course will be completely free!

I also bring sad news as at the end of August we are sadly saying goodbye to our lovely Vet Sophie. Sophie has been given an incredible opportunity to work at a veterinary practice within a rescue charity. We wish Sophie lots of luck and know she will be amazing!

Due to the amount of time processing the paperwork for non Pet Plan insurance forms, we have added a small administration fee. The Administration fee for claims under £500 is £5 and over £500 is £10.

As customer service is our priority at Ashman Jones the phones at both our London road and Widcombe are connected meaning that your call can be answered as soon as possible. This means that your call may be diverted if the other line is busy. Please do not be alarmed if a different branch answers as our computer systems are also linked, meaning we can still book appointments, make notes and access your records from either branch wherever we answer from.

Until next time here is another animal fact for you: The colour red doesn’t really make bulls angry as they are colour-blind!



Warmest Wishes

Holly Smith @ Team Ashman Jones