Rossendale Free Press - - Rossendale People - VICKI LARKHAM

Dear Vicki My four-year-old Col­lie, Pen­nie, keeps chew­ing her paws. They don’t look sore or red and I’m not sure why she keeps do­ing it? A par­a­site like the har­vest mite can af­fect the skin, es­pe­cially in the late sum­mer or early au­tumn. The larva can look like red dots on the skin and it can be very itchy. They are of­ten found be­tween the paws or on any skin that comes into con­tact with the ground. A dif­fer­ent type of mite can cause ‘mange’ and af­fect a dog’s feet. Con­tact al­ler­gies, where a pet has come into con­tact with some­thing they are al­ler­gic to, such as con­crete dust or car­pet clean­ers, can also cause skin prob­lems. Bore­dom or a lack of ex­er­cise can fo­cus a dog’s at­ten­tion to one area and cause them to chew or lick. There could also be other pos­si­bil­i­ties, such as bac­te­rial, fun­gal and par­a­sitic in­fec­tions. Dear Vicki I’ve had my res­cue cat for three years but re­cently, when I go to bed, she me­ows and howls up the stairs con­stantly and if I don’t wake up she bangs on the wardrobe doors. Sep­a­ra­tion anx­i­ety is a con­di­tion where an an­i­mal be­comes at­tached to their owner and can’t cope when they leave them on their own. It is much more com­monly seen in dogs, but can af­fect cats. An­other pos­si­bil­ity is that a med­i­cal con­di­tion is af­fect­ing your cat’s be­hav­iour. For ex­am­ple, fe­line de­men­tia can cause cats to ap­pear con­fused or dis­ori­en­tated, to vo­calise more, to go to the toi­let in the house and to seem anx­ious at night. Sim­i­larly, an over­ac­tive thy­roid gland can cause a cat to seem hy­per­ac­tive and po­ten­tially more ir­ri­ta­ble or ag­gres­sive than usual.

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