Entries by Bronwyn Hayes

Megacolon in Cats – Part II

Part 2 of the debilitating colon problem in cats called megacolon. This disease causes marked dilation of the colon with subsequent impaction with a large volume of feces. In this post, I review how we treat this painful condition to make our affected feline friends feel better. Happy reading! Megacolon – Medical Management A single bout of constipation typically resolves without therapy. Mild-to-moderate or recurrent episodes of usually require some form of medical intervention. Such therapies may include: – Dietary modification – Laxatives – Enemas – Colon pro-motility drugs Hospitalization for intravenous fluid therapy to correct dehydration and electrolyte derangements, as well […]

Megacolon in Cats – Part I

Nobody likes to feel constipated, not even cats. Unfortunately, some of our feline friends develop dysfunction in their colon called megacolon. In this first part of a two-part series, I’ll explain what megacolon is and how it’s diagnosed. Next week, I’ll review how to treat this potentially debilitating condition. Happy reading! Megacolon – What is it? The colon, also called the large intestine, is a tubular organ that connects the small intestine to the anus. The large intestine is divided into multiple segments, including the ascending colon, transverse colon, and descending colon. Cumulatively, the colon is responsible for absorbing water from […]

The CATNIP Study

CATNIP is a clinical research trial which will test whether an experimental drug called AMG 157 given with cat allergy shots will help the cat allergy shots work. The researchers want to see if after just one year of treatment, which is less than the 2-3 year standard therapy for allergy shots, relief will continue for at least one more year after stopping both medications.  AMG 157 is an antibody, like the ones your body makes when you have an infection. This antibody has been made in a laboratory and is like other medications that have been developed to treat […]

7 Tips for Introducing a New Kitten to Kids

Bringing a new kitten into your family is bound to be an exciting time, but should you be worried about introducing him to your kids? The answer is No; as long as you follow these essential tips for introducing a new kitten to kids, you’ll have a well-adjusted kitten and children who know how to respect animals. 7 Tips for Introducing a New Kitten to Kids   1. Take it Slowly Your new kitten is likely to be overwhelmed by his new surroundings; add excitable children to this and it can be a bit too much. Your children are bound […]

Feline Leukaemia Virus (FeLV) Information

WHAT IS FeLV? FeLV occurs worldwide and is a virus that suppresses a cat’s immune system. HOW IS IT TRANSMITTED? Via bodily fluid like nasal secretions, saliva, faeces, urine and blood. Therefore it can be transmitted via direct contract, sharing litter boxes/food and water bowls, mutual grooming, fighting and from mother to foetus. WHAT SYMPTOMS WILL MY CAT SHOW? The symptoms can range from NO symptoms at all to…. – Weight loss – Loss of appetite – Thrifty coat – Fever – Pale gums – Listlessness – Occurrence of other infections e.g. skin, respiratory system – Swollen lymph nodes – […]

Parasite makes mice fearless by hijacking immune cells

The Toxoplasma parasite is an unusually devious operator. When it infects mice, it alters their behaviour so they become fearless enough to seek out cats and get eaten. But exactly how it did this was a mystery. Now it appears that the parasite hijacks its victim’s immune system, causing it to produce a chemical normally found in the brain. The discovery suggests that the brain and immune system might have evolved using similar processes to control their behaviour, including electrical and chemical signals now known mainly in nerves. Toxoplasma gondii spends part of its life in a cat’s gut, then […]

Intestinal Parasite (Coccidia) in Cats

Coccidiosis in Cats Coccidiosis is a parasitic type of infection, caused by the Coccidia parasite. It most commonly causes watery, mucus based diarrhea in animals. If it is not treated, over time it can cause damage to the lining of a cat’s intestinal tract. With appropriate and prompt treatment, the prognosis is good. Symptoms and Types The primary symptom of a coccidial infection is watery, mucous-like diarrhea. Bloody diarrhea and an inability to control defecation will become apparent as the infection progresses, and your cat may become weak and feverish, with related vomiting and weight loss. Dehydration is a serious […]

Before You Get Your Puppy

Congratulations on beginning your search for a puppy. Please take your time making your decision. Your puppy’s quality of life as an adult dog pretty much depends on his socialization and training during his first few weeks in your home. Puppies grow up fast. One day you have a bumbling ball of fur and the next you have a raging adolescent. It is essential that you know how to raise and train a puppy before you get one. The first three months of their lives are a critical period for socialization and training, during which time they will develop the […]

Fireworks – How to keep your pets safe

Many domestic animals are frightened by loud noises, particularly the loud bangs and piercing sounds produced by fireworks. To avoid distress you should take appropriate measures to ensure the well being of your pets. If you are unsure as to how your pets will be affected, note that animals that are sensitive to thunderstorms are likely to react similarly to the noise of fireworks. If you are at all unsure of your pet’s reaction it is best to take precautionary measures.     Fireworks are a cause of panic for many pets and we hope that these tips will help […]

10 Tips For Current and Future Puppy Owners

General Dog Training Tips 1. Choose Wisely When Selecting Your Future Pup Whether selecting your prospective pup from a professional breeder or from a family breeding a litter for the very first time, the criteria are the same. Look for puppies raised indoors around human companionship and influence—specifically around people who have devoted lots of time to the puppies’ education.   2. Future Problems Result from Early, Non-Corrected Problems Digging, barking, and escaping are usually secondary problems of unhousetrained adolescent dogs which have been relegated to a life of solitary confinement and boredom in the yard. Housetrain your dog, and […]