DEAR Vicki, My six-month-old cocker spaniel’s eyes have never seemed right. They were weeping and developed a discharge, which the vet prescribed antibiotic cream for. They cleared up quickly, but now there is a discharge again. Is there anything that could be triggering this problem?
It may be that the original eye infection did not clear properly. However, other conditions may be triggering the problems. Sometimes a dog’s eyelids can turn inwards, causing lashes to irritate the surface of the eye. There is also a condition called distichiasis, where eyelashes grow in abnormal places. Alternatively, the discharge might be due to a blocked tear duct or tumours of the eyelid – don’t be alarmed, most are not cancerous. I would recommend taking your dog back to the vets for re-examination. DEAR Vicki, I have two guinea pigs in a hutch in a sheltered corner of my garden. As the weather is getting colder, do I need to bring them in?
I would recommend bringing your guinea pigs indoors. Relocating them in a shed or car-free garage away from harmful exhaust fumes would be ideal. Provide them with extra bedding and check water bottles regularly to make sure they haven’t frozen. Cover the hutch and run with a thick blanket or duvet but make sure the guinea pigs still have good access to sunlight.
If you don’t have a shed or garage, bring hutches indoors when temperatures plummet and ensure they are kept away from loud noises and other pets. Make sure your guinea pigs still have access to space for exercise and to play with toys.