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December 2013- Twelve days of Nogmas


I expect all the people in your house are starting to get frantically busy preparing for Christmas festivities which will soon be here, so I have put together my Twelve Days of Nogmas so you can help your owners to keep you all happy and healthy through the holidays.

Twelve gifts a giving

Hopefully your kind people will not forget you when it comes to presents this Christmas. Now is the time to give them a gentle reminder to get toys that are especially made for cats and dogs. As it is Slug's first Christmas I will be getting him a new chewy toy, but one the nice nurses here have chosen as suitable for puppies, I might get him a squeaky turkey. The noise will remind his vet mum Kate that we all need to be supervised with our toys so they don't get swallowed whole in all the excitement.

Eleven candles burning

People love candles at Christmas time. They are festive and make our houses look pretty but they need to be carefully placed up high in positions where my wagging tail and Tim the cat's acrobatic climbing activities mean they cannot be knocked over- that could cause injury to me or Tim and damage to Paddy's house!

Ten chocolates eaten

Beetle has a really good nose and lets me know when the nurses open a new tin of chocolate biscuits at coffee time, but we all know that chocolate is not good for dogs. It contains something called theobromine which can be toxic to us. Lovely as it smells, remind your owners not to put chocolate decorations on the tree where you can get them or under the tree as gifts- it might just be too tempting to try to open the parcel!

Nine crackers cracking

Crackers going bang at the Christmas lunch table and fireworks going off on New Years Eve can be very frightening for us. The other cat in our pet family, the rather timid Tonto, has to find a nice quiet place to sit when there are crackers and fireworks. Talk to the nurses here if your owners need advice. 

Eight dogs vomiting

Not a happy thought! Over the Christmas holidays understandably your people will treat themselves with special meals which will probably be more fatty and rich than normal. Sometimes that will make them feel as though they may have over- indulged. It is just the same with me, Beetle , Tim, and Tonto. I do my best to make Paddy feel really guilty when I can smell all the lovely food he is eating and he doesn't give me the same, but I know it is really not good for me. I generally give my best smiley Nog face to any visitors that come round,  they will often feel sorry for me, and give me a titbit. The odd treat won't hurt, but none of us really want to end up being sick, have diarrhoea or even worse, pancreatitis.

Seven ears a scorching 

Our house is always full of extra people over the holidays and I am hoping another of my puppy friends Bosun the french bulldog will come too, That makes kitchens very busy places. It is probably a good idea if we animals stay out of the kitchen so we don't get hot things or even worse frozen turkeys dropped on us. I hear that many  of our owners have to go to hospital with burns and broken toes at Christmas time, I don't want my pet friends to get injured in the kitchen and have to visit the surgery!

Six things a choking

Tim is a grown up cat but even he likes to climb. Kittens will get really excited by all the twinkly decorations and tinsel, let alone a new tree inside the house to climb. Make sure they don't swallow any tinsel and keep an eye out for any signs of choking.

Five shocked cats

Our owners love to decorate the house with lights, not just on the Christmas tree. This means lots of extra cords and wires plugged into sockets. These might seem annoying or particularly interesting to cats and dogs, especially kittens and puppies, who may be tempted to try and bite into them or give them a gentle chew. Remind your owners to be careful about the wires and keep an eye out for signs of damage.

Four water hazards

The trees our people bring onto the house often need watering to keep them looking green and pretty. However the trees often have been treated with substances so they don't lose their needles and although it might be tempting to have a drink from the bottom of the Christmas tree rather than find my dog bowl, I know the water won't taste nice and might be bad for me.

Three house guests

Those of you who have been in the surgery will know I am a sociable sort of chap and I love to meet and greet pets of all shapes and sizes. Not everyone is like me though,and if your people family have invited other pets to bring their people for the holidays, make sure that you still have your usual space and routine as much as possible so you don't get stressed. It is supposed to be fun time after all!

Two swallowed bones

Turkey and goose smell wonderful and surely our owners don't really need all of it for sandwiches and curry? But however tempting it smells be careful not to eat any bits of the Christmas leftovers which may have bones in them. They splinter and cause real problems probably meaning expense for your owner to get the bone out and make you feel better.

Finally, one cat up the tree!

Swinging decorations on  the new indoor tree will be very exciting to cats, kittens and puppies. Although Tim loves to climb he knows from past experience not to try and introduce himself to the fairy at he top of the tree . Make sure when your owners bring the tree in, it is securely fixed in its stand and keep an eye on your cat friends in case their secret New Years resolution is to try out mountaineering.

I hope you have all enjoyed my festive Nogmas Blog, I will be back in the New Year with the full story of Nog's Mog and Dog Weight Club.



Happy Movember to all my blog followers

I hope you like my Movember face! November is not just about men. Male dogs get prostate disease too so November is also National Canine Prostate Awareness month.

My Border Terrier trainee Slug has recently been castrated, a simple operation and he is now fighting fit and back at puppy training classes. However over 80% of entire male dogs over the age of five suffer from prostate disorders. So my lovely vet colleagues thought we should all join in with the campaign highlighting awareness about National Canine Prostate Awareness Month. If you have a non-castrated older male dog, you should get his prostate checked out. He may show no symptoms but your faithful old friend could be in pain. I am going to get my vet Paddy to check my prostate out, but on second thoughts I might ask our lovely lady vet Kate to do it instead.

We are asking our facebook followers to post pictures of their pets with Movember faces onto our facebook page to show support for Canine Prostate Awareness. Post your Movember face today!

November is also pet diabetes month.

Tim the cat and Beetle my spaniel housemates are both a bit longer in the tooth than me and that means they are more at risk of developing diabetes. My vet Paddy keeps an eye on how much they are drinking, and going outside to answer the call of nature. Being excessively thirsty is one of the first signs, along with losing weight, that our older pet friends may be suffering from diabetes. Help is at hand though. Throughout pet diabetes month our lovely nurses will give cats and dogs a free diabetes health check. It’s all very treatable with a good diet and the right care from your vets. Ask for an appointment with one of our nurses at Maids Moreton or Old Stratford for the older cats and dogs in your family.

Some of your pet owners may have received our first practice newsletter by email. If your owners didn’t and they would like to get the next one, ask them to sign up on the website to be included in all the news and offers from The Vet Centre team.

I will be back in touch with my Christmas blog in mid-December, with news on do’s and don’ts to keep you all healthy through the festive season, and an invitation to join my New Year pet diet club for those of us who may over- indulge! Have fun pet friends and hope to see you soon,