As vets we are facing very busy consulting periods trying to catch up on the many vaccinations that our patients missed during the height of lockdown, not to mention the neuterings that we are performing alongside the routine day to day emergencies. So we thought we would put out a little blog post to help us. There are some really useful things that you as owners can either bring along to the appointments or teach your pet to help us during our consults.

We know it is still very difficult times as we are not able to have owners into our buildings at the moment with their beloved pets as we are trying to maintain social distancing regulations keeping both our clients and our staff safe and healthy.

If your pet has any of these clinical signs there are a few things that may help us diagnose what is going….

If you pet has an increased thirst or is urinating more than they should, or they have unusual urinating signs such as blood in the urine or an odd colour we often request a urine sample. This helps us to run a test called a dipstick which can easily rule out conditions such as diabetes. If you are able to catch a urine sample from your pet often dogs, please catch it in a clean container, try to avoid jars or bottles which have had food stuffs with a high sugar content as this has definitely happened in the past when we detect glucose in the urine but it was from the container not the urine! Don’t worry we always ask what the container had in it before!

Has your pet been having diarrhoea? If so please either take a photo of the faeces – I know it isn’t a nice thing to have in your photo gallery! This can be emailed to your local swaynes branch prior to your appointment or alternatively collect a faecal sample. Often we will ask you to collect faecal samples from 3 consecutive days as this can increase the chances of detecting certain parasites if we submit the faecal sample to the lab for testing, more specifically detecting Giardia.

Have you noticed a lump on your pet? Often it is not easy standing in the wind / rain with your pet either meowing in the basket or trying to drag the vet back to their owner then trying to get a description of where a lump is on their body. By the time we have the pet in the consulting room often the description has been lost in translation or we can’t find the location. Again photos can be priceless – if you can take a photo of the mass with a ruler next to it for a size comparison and try to identify it as best as you can on your pet, then email it to your local swaynes branch for the attention of the vet you are due to see, this can be so valuable.

If you have a new puppy over the past few months here are some training tips for any trips to the vets:

  • Getting them to sit on a specific square of material / rubber mat when you say scales can help us get an accurate weight.
  • Looking at your pups teeth and saying “teeth” or “ears” for ears can be really helpeful.
  • Ensure your pup doesn’t mind you touching their feet and nails as often we are asked to trim their nails.
  • The other very useful trick is to try and get your pup to lie flat and very still often the command “flat” can help, as we often need our patients to lie on their sides for X-rays and ultrasound examinations and if they can master this trick it can be so helpful for us vets.

If you have any useful tips and tricks please do share with our clients on our social media pages!