Mud, dogs and other stuff!

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The joys of spring are upon us.

Warmer weather, longer days, melting snow, wet mucky backyards and parks and of course, rain! But, it’s been a long cold winter and this is a welcoming sign of better days to come. This is the time when wet muddy feet track through our homes and worse yet we see what has melted away in the backyard.


Lots of poop and scooping to be done!!! What we have to keep in mind is the importance of cleaning this up and cleaning it up well! A truly disgusting fact to add to this, is some dogs have a condition called ‘coprophagia’ which means that they eat ‘poop’!!!

Gross, right??

Absolutely! But it is a fact. Now, some dogs do this because they truly have a need to. It may be caused by a lack of nutrients in their food to medical conditions that cause them to have difficulty absorbing certain nutrients.  Also, some diseases, i.e. diabetes, Cushing’s, thyroid conditions, can actually cause an increase in appetite which leads to coprophagia. If you have an adult dog that is new to this behaviour, please contact our office, Snelgrove Vet Services in Brampton to schedule an appointment. If this is a young puppy it may be just a new adventure. Some puppies sniff poop, then play with poop and eventually taste poop and unfortunately, inadvertently, because they get lots of attention for doing this, we end up actually reinforcing this behaviour.

So, now the big question. How do we STOP this???

Well, the obvious first step is to stop access to it!!!

Then, if it’s an older dog that has never shown this behaviour before , take them to a vet. If it’s a new dog or you recently acquired a new dog and the previous dog is eating the vice versas, clean well after ever bowel movement and hopefully it will stop. If you have recently changed food brands considering going back to their previous food. If you have recently placed your dog on a diet or started exercising them more, consider increasing their food intake.

In puppies, don’t punish the behaviour itself, try to distract the puppy away from it before it gets a chance to eat it. Try calling him/her to you as soon as they have eliminated and upon coming to you, give them a treat. This rewards the dog for the behaviour of, after every bowel movement, YOU will give it a treat. Then clean it up promptly.

Amazingly many types of internal parasites (worms) can survive throughout the winter months. So the better we clean the less our chances of our pets acquiring these wiggly friends.

Don’t forget this also applies to trip to the park. Melting snow can reveal all sorts of hidden dangers. Everything from broken glass, to moldy, rotten food waste and worse, different dog poop! A new sort of treat. LOL

20 cool dog facts from your local vet in Brampton!

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  1. Dalmation puppies are born pure white.
  2. Dogs sweat through the pads of their feet.
  3. ChowChow puppies are born with pink tongues.
  4. A puppy is born blind, deaf and toothless.
  5. Puppies have 28 teeth while adults dogs have 42.
  6. Three dogs (from 1st class cabins) survived the sinking of the Titanic. 2 Pomeranians and 1 Pekingnese.
  7. The most popular male dog names are Max and Jake.
  8. The most popular female dog names are Maggie and Molly.
  9. French Poodles did not originate in France but in Germany (‘poodle’ comes from the German pudel or pudelhund , meaning ‘splashing dog’).  Some scholars speculate the poodle’s puffs were for more efficient swimming, while leaving the hair around the major joints to keep them warm.
  10. Most dog can run an average of 30 kph. Greyhounds are the fastest dogs on Earth and can run at speeds of 72 kph. Wow!!
  11. U.S. President Lyndon Johnson had 2 beagles named Him and Her.
  12. Dogs drink water by forming the back of their tongue to form a mini-cup.
  13. The most popular registered breed is the Labrador Retriever.
  14. Grapes and raisins, even in small amounts can cause kidney problems.
  15. The current record for longest tail, according to Guinness World Records, is an Irish Wolfhound from Calgary with a tail measuring  28.46 inches.
  16. Dogs are pregnant for an average of 63 days.
  17. The largest litter of puppies, according to Guinness World Records, was 24 Neopolitan Mastiffs born in the UK in 2004.
  18. The Canadian Kennel Club currently recognizes 175 different breeds of dogs.
  19. The richest dog to date, was a maltese, named Trouble, that inherited 12 million dollars when his owner passed away, to maintain the lifestyle he was accustomed to.
  20. Irish Wolfhounds are typically the tallest breed of dog while the Chihuahua is typically the shortest.

20 cool cat facts from your local vet in Brampton!

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  1. There are currently 55 recognized breeds of domesticated cats.
  2. Cat ears have 30 different muscles in them. Humans only 6.
  3. Kneading is a instinctual behaviour stemming from kittenhood. Kittens knead to stimulate milk from their mothers.
  4. Cats spend anywhere from 15-50% of their day grooming themselves.
  5. Cat urine glows in the dark when you shine a black light on it.
  6. An unspayed cat could have more than 100 kittens in her lifetime.
  7. Cat noses have unique patterns just like fingerprints.
  8. A cat will squint to smile at you. Squint back to show them they make you happy too.
  9. Cats sweat through the pads of their feet
  10. The smallest recognized breed of domesticated cat is the Singapura and the largest is a toss-up between Maine Coons, Ragdolls and Ragamuffins.
  11. Cats tongues have small hooks on them which is great for grooming and removing meat remnants from bones in the wild.
  12. In Asia and England, black cats are considered lucky!
  13. Calico and Tortoise shell cats are almost always female.
  14. Cats don’t taste sweet in the same way we do.
  15. A cats resting heart rate is twice as fast as the average human.
  16. White cats with blue eyes are usually deaf. A white cat with one green and one blue eye, will typically be deaf on the blue side only.
  17. A male cat is called a tom and a female a molly or a queen.
  18. Cats can’t see in total blackness. They need some light, even very faint, to be able to see.
  19. Cats have 5 toes on their front paws but only 4 on their back paws.
  20. Many cats are lactose intolerant.

If you have any other cool facts that you would like to add, feel free to leave a comment. Thanks

Ricky Ricardo, Our Clinic Cat!

I’m sure anyone who has come into Snelgrove Vet Services has met our clinic cat, Ricky. He spends most of his day up in the waiting room, greeting clients at the reception desk. He is a big ball of orange, purry love and tends to bring out the soft side in everyone. When clients come in and he’s not up front, they often ask where he is. He does tend to take his afternoon naps in our pharmacy, and of course he goes to visit the staff in the back (in fact, he is on the desk right now rubbing his face all over me and stepping on my keyboard as I write this). But do you know how Ricky came to be our clinic cat? Well, I’ll tell you!

Ricky came to Snelgrove in the spring of 2006. He was brought in by a very good client of ours, along with his littermate, after being found in a barn. By all accounts, the two kittens were quite the mess when they came through our doors. They were sick, dirty, flea-bitten and very, very young. Nava, one of our veterinary assistants, volunteered to take them home to hand-raise them. Young kittens need feeding at least every 4 hours and also require stimulation in order to eliminate. They also need to keep warm with the help of hot water bottles that need to be changed often. Taking care of abandoned kittens at home is no easy feat, but Nava was up for the challenge!

While the other kitten thrived, Ricky did not fare as well. In fact, he had to be fed through a tube because he was unable to eat on his own. As the weeks passed, he continued to require special care from our staff. Eventually, the other kitten was adopted out, but when Ricky reached the age and weight required to allow him to be put up for adoption, the staff was reluctant to do so. Since everyone had such a hand in raising this little guy, we all got very attached to him. Because of this, and the fact that he had been such a sickly kitten, we decided to keep him as our clinic cat!

Since then, Ricky has been a constant presence at Snelgrove Vet Services. He is loved by staff and clients alike. He also gets along really well with all of the other animals coming through our doors. From the kittens we get from the shelter to be adopted out, to our in-hospital patients. He especially loves when Summer, the full-service groomer on site, brings her Shih Tzu Scout. Ricky is a fantastic clinic cat and he gets more than spoiled living here. He has the great ability to put a smile on everyone’s face, and we wouldn’t have it any other way!

– Kait.

The Everley Chronicles: What’s in a Name?

I don’t know about you, but I love names. I keep lists of all of the interesting names that I come across, along with their meanings. I’ve been doing this since highschool. I just think names are so cool and I love hearing new and interesting ones. I also really like watching name trends, I find it very interesting. Similar to fashion, names seem to be cyclical. Looking at the most popular names of the past few years, the classics (like Alexander or Olivia, for example) are creeping the top of the list.

Since I have such an interest in names, I always get excited to pick names for a new pet, or help friends with choosing a name for theirs. When it came time to take my cute little kitten home, it was no different. I played around with a few names for her. Since I thought she was so tiny and precious, I wanted to give her something that, in my mind, sounded very pretty. It’s also very hard to work at a vet clinic and not have pre-existing associations with certain names, and it was especially important to me not to name her something that we commonly hear here. Luckily for me, I can type the first few letters of any name into our client database and it will pull up all patients that match. I typed “Ev” into the computer and all that came up were pets named Eve, Eva or Evy. I was in the clear in that respect. The only thing left was to decide how to spell her name. I actually had a quite a few options: Everley, Everly, Everlee, Everlea or Everleigh. For the first week or so, I settled on Everleigh because I liked the way it looked. But after seeing it in our appointment book, and having to type it out when texting friends, I felt like it was a bit pretentious and changed it to Everley, which seemed a bit more laid back.

Naming a pet can be a lot of fun! You have to try to capture their personality in their name, or maybe your thoughts about the name are molded by their personality… What do you think? Is there any sort of criteria you think about when naming your pets? I personally prefer people names for pets, as opposed to pet names, although that wasn’t always the case. Are there certain names you love, or ones you would never think of naming your pet? I’d love to hear people’s thoughts on the subject.


Thanks Brampton for an awesome Dental Awareness Month!

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As we wrap up Dental Awareness month for another year, we would like to just remind everyone to the importance of good oral health. As with us, brushing is a necessity that just can’t be forgotten. Without proper oral health, ourselves and our pets would be left with a mouth full of bacteria, plaque, tartar, infection and tooth loss.

Just try!! That’s all we ask of everyone.

Try and brush at least once a day and if that’s not possible 2-3 times per week is better than nothing. And don’t forget, there are also special foods to help control tartar, treats to control plaque build up and water additives to help control bacteria in the mouth. In conjunction, these can help control your pets oral health and perhaps help prevent or lengthen the time in between professional dental cleanings.

Fresh Breath makes the world a better place!!! 🙂