Queensland grasses are quite woody in comparison to southern grass types, as a result, when the whether gets dry after we have had some rain. Grass’s go to “seed” – these seeds are often covered in small spines that allow them to stick to people and pets as they walk in our parks. Without good preventative care grass seeds can sneak their way into your pet’s paws, ears, nostrils, or eyes, and can cause some complicated health problems.
The best cure of course in prevention – after each walk hose brush your pet down with a comb to remove loose seeds and burrs. Then rinse them off with plain old water.
If grass seeds are not removed and are left untreated, they can cause some irritating issues. These can include:-
- ear infections
- abscess formation
- ruptured eardrums
- loss of an eye
- or even an Aural Hematoma.
The most common presentation is an interdigital abscess
Treatment for grass seeds can be extremely complicated and often require an anesthetic.
Prevention is the key! To minimise the risk to your pet, we recommend the following;
- Keep an eye on the length of your grass. Shorter grass is the best way to minimise the risk of grass seeds.
- Check your pet daily for grass seeds. They could be hiding in their coat, toes, eyes, and ears!
- Regularly groom your dog.
- Avoid dry grass areas when taking your dog out.
Worried about your pet and Coronavirus?
We know some of our pet owners are concerned about Coronavirus (COVID-19) and can it be passed to pets? Here is some information to help.
What you need to know about COVID-19 and your pets.
A report about a Hong Kong Pomeranian has caused concern among some pet owners. On the 4th March the Hong Kong SAR Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) reported that the dog tested “weakly positive” to COVID-19. Following confirmation that the dog’s owner was positive for the virus causing COVID-19. The Hong Kong authorities believe this finding may indicate the dog has a low-level of infection. The dog has not shown any clinical signs of disease and is currently being held in quarantine. At this stage there is no evidence that pets can play a role in the spread of this human disease, or that they become sick. COVID-19 is an ever-evolving situation, its best to ensure precautionary steps are taken when handling pets.
Precautionary steps to follow as a pet owner:
- Follow good hygiene when interacting with your pets.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after touching any animal.
- Avoid sharing food with your pets or letting your pets kiss or lick your face or mouth.
- Keep your pet’s vaccinations and parasite treatments up to date and maintain regular veterinary health checks.
What should you do if your pet has been exposed to someone with COVID-19?
There is currently no evidence that suggests pet dogs or cats can be a source of infection to other animals or to humans. This virus is being spread from human to human. Should your pet develop an unexplained illness, contact your public health official and your local Vet. It’s important to explain that your pet has been in contact with someone who has COVID-19 should this be the case.
Should I quarantine myself from my pets?
Pet owners who are or may become infected with COVID-19 should restrict close contact with their pets. Appropriate hand hygiene practices before and after handling pets is critical.
How should I get veterinary attention if I am quarantined and my pet is sick?
Kalinga Park can over veterinary consultations via Skype and other online platforms ring us on 0733571588 to discuss – we can also arrange medication delivery to your mail box for local customers.
For more information visit these websites ;
Of all the reasons a cat or dog requires a visit to the Veterinary Surgery, an ear problem is among the most common. Caring for a pet's ears does not need to be complicated, but they are not the same as a human ear and do require a little bit of TLC.
Their deep, curved ear canals make it difficult for air to get in and moisture to get out and moisture retained in the ear after swimming or bathing can often lead to infections. Spring and summer when it is hot and particularly when it is humid is the worst time of the year for ear infections. Not only are ear infections likely to occur but quite often they are difficult to cure. In brisbane one of the most common underlying causes of ear problems is allergies, untreated it will lead to secondary complications. Bacterial infestation, fungal infestation, ear mites and foreign bodies such as grass seeds are the also common causes of ear irritations.
Ten Important signs of Ear problems
- Odour - bad odour coming from the ears
- Scratching at the ears
- Excessive discharge (usually yellow, brown or black)
- Inflammation - redness of the ear flap or canal
- Shaking the head or ears
- Obvious pain when touched around the head or ears
- Head tilted to one side or held down
- Stumbling or circling to one side
- Lethargy or depression
- Marked swelling of the ear flaps
If your dog or cat is showing any of these signs then a visit to the veterinarian is necessary, as there is a high likelihood an ear problem is present.
What can you do?
The best way to prevent ear problems is to establish a regular ear care program aimed at preventing such problems from developing.
Keep ears dry. Ears should be dried thoroughly after bathing or swimming.
- Cleaning. A regular ear clean following your dog's bath using an alcohol-based ear cleaning solution such as Epi-Otic or Bayer Ear Cleaning solution will remove any dirt or wax buildup that may encourage infections. All of these cleaners are readily available over the counter at the surgery without consultation.
- Clipping/Plucking. It is important to clip or pluck the hair from around the ear canal. Dogs that do not shed hair such as Poodles, Schnauzers, Bichons, Labradoodles, Spoodles etc. often need to have hair plucked from the canals. This allows better air flow into the canal and prevents wax from being trapped thus reducing the chance an infection will develop.
- Controlling skin disease. Many ear infections are simply a continuation of a generalized skin condition such as bacterial or fungal infection. When this happens it is impossible to treat the ear infection without controlling the skin disease.
What should you do if your Pet has eaten or been bitten by a Bat or [wiki id=en]Flying fox[/wiki]?
Immediately call us on 07 33571588, there is a specific protocol in place to handle dogs or cats that have had potential contact with a bat or Flying fox infected with Lyssavirus. You can fill out an application for post exposure treatment here.
Should I try and move the bat from the pet?
- AT NO TIME SHOULD YOU ATTEMPT TO HANDLE A LIVING BAT.
- IF YOU’RE NOT SURE DON’T TOUCH IT.
- Even if the bat is dead I would advise against any direct contact.
What Should I do if I think I might have been bitten or scratched?
GO IMMEDIATELY TO YOUR NEAREST HOSPITAL EMERGENCY ROOM
What can happen if I don’t get treatment or post-exposure vaccination for my Pet?
- Maybe nothing – if the bat wasn’t carrying [wiki title =”lyssavirus” id=en]Australian Bat Lyssavirus[/wiki]. The risk of infection is low. but the result of infection could be death, that’s a big risk!
- If the pet becomes infected, it will die usually within 90 days but it has been recorded for deaths to take as long as 27mths
You can call us and ask to speak to Dr Ben Charlton, to further clarify all of the points discussed above, the Queensland government has a protocol in place we follow to provide the correct treatment for these patients.