“Our Commitment To Your Pet Lies In The Quality Of Our Care”

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234 Power Road, Endeavour Hills, Vic 3802

 

Telephone: 1300-838-738 or 1300-VET-PET

 

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SELECTING A PET - WHICH DOG DO I GET?

“Our Commitment To Your Pet Lies In The Quality Of Our Care”

Selecting PetThere are a number of factors in modern day life which can act as triggers to pet ownership, because the kind of unconditional love which pets offer seems to act as an antidote to life's pressures. People are looking towards pets for some of the characteristics they would look for in any relationship; loyalty, devotion, affection, company, comfort, responsiveness and even control. Pet lovers have long believed that the relationship they enjoy with their pet is a proper relationship and as such, it involves a balance of rights and responsibilities, pleasure and duties.

There are obvious positives and negatives in pet ownership. But for pet owners the equation comes down strongly on the side of the intangible and many would say immeasurable, positives which a dog or cat provide. The emotional rewards of ownership are so great that the rational objections to ownership simply don't have much influence on the final decision. The possible negatives are not realistically weighed up against the positives.

The "old school" of pet care which was typified by minimal vet care, no vaccinations, no canned food, unwanted pups or kittens drowned, desexing carried out by the gumboot-and-knife method and no registration, does not hold any more in today’s society. Today a lot of effort is made when selecting your pet’s family doctor. We do hope that we fulfill your expectations. One of our goals is to meet and surpass international best practice.

We do know that the purchase price of the pet and food costs do not seem to be the major issues, rather, it is the ongoing and unexpected maintenance costs. If you have not used our services before, we do suggest that you give us a try and see if we come up to your expectations. If we do not come upto your expectations we would like to know how we can improve ourselves, because we believe in “Good, Better, Best; Do Not Rest; Till The Good Is Better; And The Better Best”. We do believe in continually improving our services through community engagement.

Owning a dog is not just a privilege it's a enormous responsibility. These beautiful animals depend on us for at the very minimum, food, water and shelter, but they deserve so much more. If you are considering taking a dog into your life, think long hard and seriously about the commitment that dog ownership entails. Here are some points to keep in mind when choosing a dog.

  • If your time is limited, choose a dog that needs little grooming, minimal training, and only moderate exercise.

  • If your budget is tight, choose a small-to-medium dog that needs little grooming and minimal training and less food.

  • If you are an inexperienced dog owner, do not choose a large dominant dog or a dog with high energy level unless you are committed to six months of steady, patient, consistent training and a dozen years of daily walks of a mile or more.

  • If you have children or elderly people in your home, do not choose a large, dominant dog that needs lots of training and exercise, or a high-strung dog that is fearful of high-pitched voices and childish behaviour.

  • Be prepared to walk the dog at least twice a day and to clean up his/her waste. For a dog to be able to sleep well it needs to exercise well.

There are a few principles and rules you should adhere to:

  • Rule 1. Do your homework decide on size and basic type of breed before you even start looking. Look at your working and time commitments. Can you really afford the time and expense of dog ownership?

  • Rule 2. If you have children under five I would strongly recommend against taking on a rescue dog, the temperament may be unknown or masked by the environment of the kennels. In most cases responsible rescue centre's will not allow their dogs to be re-homed to couples with young children.

  • Rule 3. Never buy on impulse or because you feel sorry for a frightened and timid dog, especially if you are not an experienced and confident dog owner.

  • Rule 4. Discuss what you want in a dog (e.g. an active dog that will play willingly, happily go on long walks, or a homely laid back breed of dog that will happily sit for hours by the fire, and only requires gentle exercise.

  • Rule 5. If you have decided on a pedigree check the breed requirements and possible problems, discuss the positive and negatives of that breed with breeders and the rescue staff.

  • Rule 6. Don’t expect to walk into a rescue centre and walk out with a dog. They will need to check your suitability to own a dog including your home, garden, and work commitments, in many cases they will pay a home visit and will require you to complete a long questionnaire.

  • Rule 7. Once you have decided that you are going to re-home a dog then prepare the home and garden well before the arrival

Some of the important issues that you will need to consider before acquiring a pet are:-

  • Role the pet is expected to play; reason for the pet

  • Specific expectations
    • Size
    • Activity level
    • Specific needs (e.g. tracking, silent)
    • Appearance, grooming needs
    • Anticipated changes (puppy or aged dog)

  • Costs
    • Adoption fee
    • Neutering
    • Council registration
    • Vaccines
    • Fecal
    • Food
    • Cost of one major illness

  • Client’s schedule and lifestyle
    • Allergies
    • Physical ability
    • Work versus recreation time
    • Age of client – provision in will

  • Breed specific concerns
    • Grooming
    • Exercise
    • Behavioural propensities (e.g. Abyssinians, hounds)
    • Metabolic or genetic diseases

  • Common complaints with regard to breed, age and sex

  • Average life expectancy

  • Myths about behaviour

 

Some of the traits that are expressed by certain breeds of pets are listed below.

CLUSTER

TRAITS

BREEDS

1

Reactivity - high;
Trainability - low;
Aggressiveness - medium

Lhasa Apso; Pomeranian; Maltese; Cocker Spaniel; Boston Terrier; Pekinese; Beagle; Yorkshire Terrier; Weimaraner; Pug; Irish Setter

2

Reactivity – very low;
Trainability - low;
Aggressiveness – very low

English Bulldog; Old English Sheepdog; Norwegian Elkhound; Bloodhound; Basset Hound

3

Reactivity - low;
Trainability - low;
Aggressiveness – high

Samoyed; Alaskan Malamute; Siberian Husky; St Bernard; Afghan Hound; Boxer; Dalmatian; Great Dane; Chow Chow

4

Reactivity - high;
Trainability – very high;
Aggressiveness – medium

Shetland Sheepdog; Shih Tzu Miniature Poodle; Toy Poodle; Standard Poodle; Bichon Frise; English Springer Spaniel; Welsh Corgi

5

Reactivity - low;
Trainability - high;
Aggressiveness – low

Labrador Retriever; Vizsla; Brittany Spaniel; German Short-Haired Pointer; Newfoundland; Chesapeake Bay Retriever; Keeshond; Collie; Golden Retriever; Australian Shepherd

6

Reactivity – very low;
Trainability – very high;
Aggressiveness – very high

German Shepherd; Akita; Doberman Pinscher; Rottweiler

7

Reactivity - high;
Trainability - medium;
Aggressiveness – very high

Cairn Terrier; West Highland White Terrier; Chihuahua; Fox Terrier; Scottish Terrier; Dachshund; Miniature Schnauzer; Silk Terrier; Airedale Terrier

 

Regardless of the age or source of the pet, dogs in particular should be encouraged to have superb public manners. If you are considering a pet you should be willing to adhere to the established principles of responsible pet ownership:-

  1. Provide the pet with the basics of food, water, shelter, warmth, comfort and security and opportunities for defecation and urination away from the sleeping area
  2. Provide the pet with a safe living environment - protection from fear and distress
  3. Provide the pet with appropriate health care - protection from disease and injury
  4. Meet the social and emotional needs of the pet, companionship, mental stimulation and opportunities for expression of normal behaviour
  5. Provide the pet with regular exercise and playtime
  6. Provide the pet with training
  7. Maintain the pet in a well groomed manner
  8. Desex the pet
  9. Practice good neighbour and community citizenship
  • Provide the pet with a lifetime committment

How an animal is raised can and does affect its later behaviour. Training helps in recognising early signs of possible behaviour problems. Training is invaluable in getting you and your pet to interact in a socially acceptable manner.

Most rescue dogs have had at least one home and sometimes many. It will normally come with behavioural baggage and problems, purely from the fact that it has been rejected at least once.

Some will have been in Kennels or the Rescue Centre for some considerable time, that has an effect on the dogs, especially those that are normally used to family life and constant attention. The dog may have been put there because of behavioural problems, which may include aggression, toileting, excessive barking destructive tendencies etc.

Rescued dogs are usually more than six months old, are housetrained, and mainly past the chewing-everything stage, they are normally happy to be placed in a loving home. Many have been precipitously uprooted from a loved family by some misfortune, and some will have been abused or neglected and need lots of patience and tender loving care, to overcome the trauma they have suffered in their short lives.

The initial adjustment can sometimes be difficult as the dog may need to learn to trust again, or even for the first time. Separation anxiety, fear of noises, and attempts to run away are common. But once past the first few months, when the dog learns to depend on the kindness of his new owners, then the bond is forged.As well meaning as you are, you will also need to understand some of the problems that “Recycled” Pets present:-

  • Fear
  • Housebreaking / litterbox problems
  • Aggression may not show until 3 to 4 months in new home
  • Inappropriate play
  • No play
  • Problems with other pets
  • Anxiety-related disorders

Prevention and reshaping needs to start immediately, should you consider a “recycled” pet. It is important to understand that behaviour problems and conditions are the biggest killer of pets. We all want to prevent behaviour problems. Prevention of behaviour problems is not as simple as education. Education and follow up are only two of the factors that contribute to prevention of problems. Other factors include obtaining the type of pet and specific pet that best fits into your household and understanding the genetic basis of the problems.

As you can appreciate the problems are many and will need to be identified. It is therefore recommended that your pet is seen by us at the earliest, to prevent the problem progressing and causing other complications. Early recognition and treatment means that your pet will recover sooner, and will therefore be far more comfortable. It is not only significantly more difficult to treat a pet in an advanced stage of the disease, as well as far more expensive, but one also has to take into account the significant pain and stress your pet is under by not being treated at the earliest.

We sincerely recommend that you please call us on 1300-838-738 (1300-VET-PET) to schedule an appointment at the earliest. We do not believe in berating our clients for presenting the pets late, as we believe that this is counter productive. It is not our intention to cause you any embarrassment, offence or anxiety. Our approach is now that you have presented your pet to us, how do we go forward from here, not only keeping your pet’s welfare at heart, but also working with your wishes and limiting factors. We do approach all cases presented to us with a level of sensitivity. As pet health care professionals we will present our assessment and treatment in a professional manner and factually as possible.

You may not be aware that in older pets multiple problems often arise as aging affects all body systems. As pets age they become increasingly vulnerable to diseases. The three leading causes of non accidental death in pets are cancer, kidney disease and heart disease. Older animals seldom suffer from a single disease. One problem may markedly influence the course of another. Ageing is characterised by progressive and irreversible change. Pets are likely to start having diseases associated with ageing between 7 and 13 years. Smaller dogs tend to live longer than large dogs. The quality and length of life of older pets can be improved through regular health checks (every 6 months). A thorough clinical examination will help define some of these problems.

Because we do care for the welfare and interest of your pet, we do go out of way to ensure that your pet can access medical or surgical attention in time of its need. It would also interest you to know that:-

  1. We do pride ourselves in the quality of our services.
  2. We do provide a 24 hour on call service.
  3. We also offer payment plans through a third party, provided you meet the criteria as set out by the financing institute.
  4. If you cannot bring your pet to us, we will come to you as we do have a fully equipped pet ambulance.
  5. We also do house calls.
  6. Your pet will receive a very high level of care given the level of diagnostic and monitoring equipment that we have on hand.
  7. We do welcome you to take a personal tour of our facility.
  8. We also provide pet grooming services
  9. We also provide puppy classes. Puppies are trained not only indoors, but also outdoors, being exposed to outdoor noises and traffic in a controlled environment. The puppy training classes are run by Ms Julie Pocknee.
  10. We do care for our wildlife, and work very closely with wildlife carers providing veterinary care where needed.
  11. We take an active part in community services and proudly support Service Dog Training, by way of providing veterinary services to working dogs of individuals with disabilities. Please see www.servicedogtraining.com.au

If you have not used our services before, we do suggest that you try our services and see the differences for yourself. From our analysis we find that over 30% of all new patients are referred to us by existing clients, and a further 25% of all new patients are brought in by existing clients. Our clients travel from as far as Camberwell, Clayton, Fitzroy, Ringwood, Chelsea, St Kilda, Port Melbourne, Pakenham, to name but a few. From the level of service we provide, you would come to understand that we are not your average Veterinary Services provider. We do recommend that you bookmark our web address www.petcarevet.com.au

Our staff are very friendly and courteous. We are very easily accessible. We are located at 234 Power Road, Endeavour Hills, at the intersection of Power Road and Heatherton Road, Endeavour Hills, just off the Monash Freeway. Please note that parking is at the rear.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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