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Our blog

Welcome to Petplan’s blog, a space where you can read up on the latest pet-news, find out interesting facts and tips about keeping your pets happy and healthy, and share your views on hot topics.

Why is my dog going bald?

Why is my dog going bald?
Posted on by Petplan
This article contains: dog hair loss hormone

Q: Our old Schnauzer, Ernie, has a bald patch near his tail that seems to be getting bigger. The vet has treated him for mange and fleas, but the bald patch still seems to be getting larger. 

We are getting really worried now, and the vet doesn’t seem to know how to treat it. Any ideas?

A: This could be a case of the condition known as hypothyroidism, a hormonal disorder in which the thyroid glands don’t produce the correct amount of thyroid hormone. This can result in many changes, most notably a thinning of the coat.

More common in older canine patients, hypothyroidism can be tested for by taking a sample of blood from Ernie to test for thyroid hormone and thyroid-stimulating hormone. Discuss this possibility with your vet, as this condition can be easily treated with supplement hormone to eventually cover up Ernie’s patchiness.

What to do about strange lumps on your dog

What to do about strange lumps on your dog
Posted on by Petplan
This article contains: dog lumps lipoma

Q: Our 10-year-old Labrador has developed lots of soft lumps over the years. Our vet told us that they are likely to be fatty lumps and that there were too many to test. Should I continue to point them out to the vet each time a new one develops?

A: It is very important to keep track of strange lumps and bumps on your pets and to report them to your vet whenever they are present. Fatty lumps called lipomas are very common in ageing Labradors, and tend to grow slowly while remaining smooth in texture.

Owners should be concerned if a lump or bump is growing quickly, or has changed in colour or consistency (for example, from soft to hard or from smooth to nodular), and this is always something that should be flagged up with your vet.

Coprophagia: why dogs eat poo

Coprophagia: why dogs eat poo
Posted on by Petplan
This article contains: dog eating behaviour faeces

Q: My dog is disgusting – it eats the cat poo from the litter tray. How can I stop this?

A: This is known as coprophagia – the eating of faeces. A dog may eat its own, other dogs’ or other animals’ poo.

Cats eat a high-protein meat diet, so theirs is particularly attractive to dogs. Coprophagia can occur as a result of digestive problems.

You should clean your cat litter tray as soon as it is soiled, or place it where the dog cannot reach. Remember that dogs are scavengers and will eat all sorts of items that we find disgusting, so be careful about hygiene – particularly if you let your dog lick your face!

 

Rescue dogs: what every owner needs to know

Rescue dogs: what every owner needs to know
Posted on by Petplan
This article contains: dog rescue pets behaviour
Q: Our 18-month-old Staffie-Jack Russell cross is a rescue dog, who was abandoned. He's friendly but quivers when we're even slightly stern with him. Sometimes he growls at nothing in particular, so we gently tell him off but he continues quivering, as he knows he'll be told off again! He also lunges at cars.

Is blood-pressure medication safe for your dog?

Is blood-pressure medication safe for your dog?
Posted on by Petplan
This article contains: dog vaccinations blood pressure
Q: My nine-year-old German Shepherd bitch was prescribed Atenolol for the blood pressure problem SVT two years ago. She recovered well but after her last booster, she became lethargic, unsteady and off her food. I'm worried this year's booster may affect her badly.
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