VETS Q&A

Rossendale Free Press - - Rossendale People - VICKI LARKHAM

DEAR Vicky, IS there any way I can pre­vent my cat get­ting con­junc­tivi­tis? She has had three bouts this year, is that nor­mal? ONE com­mon cause of chronic eye in­fec­tion in cats stems from them hav­ing had cat flu when younger. Of­ten there are no clin­i­cal signs, but many cats may have suf­fered the in­fec­tion which can ‘re­ac­ti­vate’ in­ter­mit­tently and cause eye in­fec­tions. Nurs­ing care, such as bathing your cat’s eyes, will help to al­le­vi­ate symp­toms and your vet or vet nurse can show you how to do this. They may also pre­scribe an­tibi­otics dur­ing flare ups. Stress can also be a trig­ger, so min­imis­ing this for your cat may pre­vent re­cur­rences. A suit­able, healthy diet is also im­por­tant and your vet prac­tice can give you ad­vice on any changes that may be needed. Vac­ci­na­tions against cat flu are avail­able, so it’s best to make sure cats keep up-to-date with these to try and pre­vent in­fec­tion in the first place. DEAR Vicky, WHEN I am on the phone, my six-mon­thold spaniel pulls on my clothes and tries to get my at­ten­tion. Why is he do­ing this? AT­TEN­TION-SEEK­ING like this can be­come a prob­lem, as dogs can de­velop anx­i­ety if they are used to con­stant re­as­sur­ance and then don’t get it. Ig­nore him every time he does this. Even push­ing him away or re­spond­ing ver­bally can be viewed by your dog as at­ten­tion, so don’t re­spond at all or make eye con­tact. Only give praise and re­ward when he stops and re­mains calm, so he knows that this is the de­sired be­hav­iour. If the be­hav­iour per­sists then you can ask your vet for ad­vice as they may rec­om­mend re­fer­ral to an ac­cred­ited be­haviourist.

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