A new pet in the family
Introducing a new pet into the family is a lot of fun for everyone but it also comes with a huge amount of responsibility. Here’s our very important check-list to ensure your new arrival starts out life in the best possible way…
Vaccinations: one of the key reasons pets are living longer is that we are able to vaccinate them against a range of infectious diseases that, without regular vaccination, pose a deadly threat to our pets. Regular booster vaccinations, combined with a health check are the best way of protecting your pet, plus at the same time keeping a watchful eye out for any other emerging health issues.
Fleas: most puppies and kittens will arrive with a fair number of fleas, so it’s always a good idea to have them checked over by your vet who will then advise you on the best form of on-going flea control for your pet.
Worming: if their parents weren’t regularly de-wormed, there is a very high prevalence of roundworm infections in puppies and kittens. As they grow up they are susceptible to infection with both roundworms and tapeworms and will require regular worming treatment. Additionally, lungworm is posing an increasing threat for many dogs, although luckily not so much in Dorset.
Life-stage diets: we can now offer pets a tailored series of diets from tiny kittens and puppies through to adult-hood and into senior years. These diets are designed to offer the ideal balance of nutrients for each life stage. The good news is that these diets can make a real difference to the health and wellbeing of pets.
Lost and found: it’s important to have your pet identified as soon as possible. As well as a collar and tag, we always recommend having your pet micro-chipped as a more secure and permanent form of identification. This will incidentally be law by April 2016 and be enforceable.
Pet insurance we always recommend pet insurance taking away the worries of any unexpected vet bills or on-going conditions meaning that treatment is not prohibited by cost.
Puppy socialisation once your puppy has been vaccinated we recommend early socialisation classes ensuring your pup is confident and happy with other dogs and people/children. They will also be introduced to a number of noises and situations. Ask your vet regarding classes.
Lots of things to be aware of with new pets joining the family, but we’re sure you will have many years of fun and happiness with them.
Chris Devlin BVSc MRCVS is a Vet and Partner at Hillside Veterinary Centre in Corfe Mullen. w: www.hillsidevets.co.uk.