Is your dog in pain?

Our dogs are our children, so how do we recognise their pain?

Our pets mean the absolute world to us, but sometimes it’s really difficult to know what is going on with them. They can’t tell us, so we need to be aware of some of the different tells so that we can quickly recognise if they are in pain. Whilst sometimes it may be very obvious, like in the case of a sore limb etc, other times, there may only be very subtle changes in their body language. Being aware of these can help us to keep on top of their health and avoid their discomfort.. and our vet bills. 

Give your dog a regular health assessment.

You can easily give your pet a quick assessment as part of their daily cuddles and grooming. While patting them, you can gently feel all over their body for any unusual lumps or bumps. You can feel the quality of their fur and skin. A healthy coat should be shiny and smooth, rather than brittle or coarse, and healthy skin should be supple and clear, not greasy, flaky, or bumpy. Another benefit of doing this is that should there be a sore spot, this could be easily found with this gentle inspection. 

Whilst patting, you can also gently lift the animals lips to check their teeth and gums. Healthy teeth should be clear of tartar, and healthy gums should be nice and pink, with no signs of swelling or infection. 

Next, check their ears. Give your pets a good scratch and use this chance to check the ears for wax, dryness or red/itchy looking skin. If any of these tests provide something you weren’t expecting, or think might be a problem, call your vet. Generally they will be happy to have a chat and put your mind at ease, or let you know if a visit is required. 

General signs of pain or sickness in dogs.

We all know our pooches pretty well, so some general things to look out for as a pain indicator are:

  1. Aggression or strange behaviour outside of the ordinary. 
  2. Shaking or trembling
  3. Extreme vocalisation or vocalising more than usual. This could be in the form of growling, yelping or howling. 
  4. Excessive grooming. If your pet is licking their paws constantly they could be trying to sooth themselves. 
  5. Heavy panting or any change in breathing pattern for no noticeable reason. ie: They might seem puffed out or struggling to breathe but have not exerted any energy. 
  6. Hunched over or change in posture. Dogs will often hunch their back if they are in pain of any sort. 

What about if they aren't feeling well?

Changes in eating habits

We all know most dogs LOVE food. So a huge indicator of whether they are feeling ok is a change in their regular food habits. If your dog normally has a good appetite and suddenly goes off their food, this should be monitored and the vet called if they are off their food for more than 1 day. 

Changes in pooping habits

I’m sure as a dog owner you know the poop scale by now. A normal poop should be brown and of play dough consistency. It should hold together when picked up. Anything different to this, you can check against the poop scale and determine whether a vet visit is in order. If runny poop is present, once does not require an immediate visit, however should this occur for more than 24 hours you should definitely get your dog to the vet. Always ensure your dog has access to and is drinking plenty of water if diarrhoea is present, as they can quickly become dehydrated. 

When should I call the vet?

It can sometimes be really hard to know whether to call the vet. Some of the most common and important reasons to do so include:

  • Eating something dangerous or toxic.
  • Off their food or water for more than two meals or 24 hours. 
  • Difficulty breathing or obvious vocalisation of pain.
  • Open wounds
  • Runny or unusual poop for more than 3 x bowel movements. 

Of course, it’s always better to be safe than sorry, so if you’re EVER unsure. Call your vet, they will be happy to help you. At Furmail, we do have our resident vet at hand to help you with any queries, so you can also contact us for guidance. 

What to do if your pet gets fleas!

You've spotted some fleas... what now?

The first thing to do is to establish whether you actually have a flea infestation. 

Most flea treatments work by killing the flea once they land on and bite your pet. In most cases, there’s not an invisible shield bouncing them away. If you’re finding dead fleas on your pet, this means the treatment is working but your pet is likely visiting a high flea area and as such they are visible on the fur. If they’re alive, and there’s more than one, this can very quickly turn into an infestation in your home and you need to get on top of it. 

itchy-dog

Check your pet and speak to your vet (or a professional) about retreating them.

Do a thorough inspection of your pet. If you find multiple fleas there are a few important things to do. Firstly, give your pet a flea bath. There is a range of products available at your local vet or pet store that can be used safely in conjunction with their usual flea treatment. then, comb out any live or dead fleas from their fur, ensuring to also get as much remaining flea dirt as possible. 

If needed, you can re-treat your pet with a chewable or spot on treatment, but ensure to speak to your vet or a veterinary professional first, as treating your pet too regularly can cause some nasty side effects like vomiting and diarrhoea. 

Treat the environment.

The problem with fleas is that once you have an infestation, they’re mighty hard to get rid of. It super important to treat the environment (your home) to ensure to remove all fleas, eggs and larvae from the area. 

Firstly, you’ll need some flea bombs from your vet or the local supermarket. Make sure to read the instructions carefully and use the right amount of bombs, as each one only treats a certain size room and underrating will result in reinfestation.

Next, strip the beds – make sure to strip all the bed sheets, couch covers, any loose blankets etc and put them in the wash. You’ll need to put your pets sleeping blankets or beds in the wash, too. Make sure you use a hot wash cycle, as this will also kill the fleas.

Lastly, vacuum. Now this isn’t any ordinary vacuum, you need to be rough with it. Flea larvae hatch due to vibrations in the carpet, so when the carpet has been treated, you want them to hatch so that they die OR get vacuumed up. It’s generally a good idea to vacuum the entire house 2-3 times to ensure to get them all, as well as ensuring to empty the vacuum bags into a sealed bag and into an outdoor trash can. 

Prevention is better than cure.

It’s always easier to keep the fleas away, rather than treating an infestation once it occurs. There’s a common misconception that we don’t need to treat our pets for fleas over the colder winter months, but this simply isn’t true. Fleas can survive in many areas outside, or on rodents, in sand or dirt or even under your house where it’s a little bit warmer. Your pets can pick these critters up anywhere and before you know it, one becomes many. 

At Furmail, we offer a range of plans for your pets, and protect from as young as six weeks of age. Contact us today to discuss the best option for your pets. 

xox

Furmail

How to treat your cat for worms

5 Safe and healthy tips

As a cat owner, seeing your sweet precious ball of fur not feeling their best due to worms can be devastating. Parasitic worms are a common cause of cat discomfort, and they can lead to several other health problems. Knowing how to protect your cat from worms is important part of being a pet owner.

Roundworms, hookworms, tapeworms, and whipworms are the most common types of parasites in cats. They can cause serious problems, especially at the earliest stages of your pet’s life. Some can also pose dangerous health risks during adulthood.

Mild and Severe Symptoms of Worms to Watch Out for in Cats

Depending on the severity, internal parasites like worms can cause vomiting, stomach problems that lead to diarrhoea, loss of appetite that causes weight loss, uncomfortable bloating, skin lesions and dull coat, skin irritations, and overall poor physical health. If left untreated, worm infestations can even be fatal. Severe levels of infection could cause pneumonia, dehydration, convulsions or shock, skin infections, blindness, anaemia, or eventually death.

1. Identify the parasites that are messing with your cat’s health.

The first step to deal with any health issue is to identify the problem. What type of parasite is affecting your cat? How is the infestation affecting your cat’s everyday routine, and what symptoms is your cat suffering from? Different parasites have specific effects on your cat’s physical health. The best way to know which action to take is to contact your local veterinarian or ask an expert.

cat-having-pill

2. Choose the Right Wormer for Your Cat

There are several types of wormers that cat care experts might recommend. Worm treatment costs will depend on the kind of solution that you want for your pet. While pastes and spot-ons are the common choices for pet owners, worming tablets are preferred because of their palatability and ease of administration. 

Since cat worming tablets are small and coated in flavours that your cats will love, you shouldn’t have a hard time giving them to your pet. Choosing the right cat worming treatment shouldn’t only be about finding an effective method to get rid of these parasites; it can also be easy and comfortable.

3. Determine the Cause and How to Prevent Reinfection

To fight against these parasites and prevent the same thing from happening again in the future, make sure you determine where it started, how it happened, and what caused the infection in the first place.

Tapeworm infestation, for example, can start when your cat swallows fleas from their fur during grooming. In this case, the best way to deal with prevention is through flea control: maintain their litter box regularly and keep your home clean. Most importantly, make sure that your cat is not exposed to other infected animals.

4. Make Your Cat Feel Loved During Treatment

As mentioned earlier, while some cases of parasite infestation in cats can be asymptomatic, some cats, unfortunately, experience mild to severe symptoms. While administering the treatment, make sure your cat feels that they are loved. They’ll need all the attention and care that they can get as it can be an uncomfortable process for them.

5. Get Help from the Best Cat Worming Experts in NZ

The most important advice we have is to talk to the right people about what’s best for your fur baby. And remember, cat worming treatments don’t have to break the bank. Find experts that can balance your cat’s comfort, and the treatment’s efficacy and affordability.

If you need advice on how to worm your cat, including a demonstration or just general assistance, you can contact Furmail and our staff will be happy to help.

We’ll help you make sure that your furry friend is protected and parasite-free!

At Furmail, we’ve got the best worming for cats around. We offer worming treatments that will give you and your cat the peace of mind that you both deserve. We provide complete cat worming treatment plans, regular and on-time treatment package delivery, and online vet consultations. Our services are designed to help you fight against common cat worms, as well as other cat and dog parasites, including fleas, mites, and mange. Contact us meow!

XOX Furmail

What flea treatments do our vets recommend?

What flea treatments do our vets recommend?

Choosing the best cat and dog flea treatments for your pets can be confusing. And with so many brands available, it is hard to know which will work best for your dog. We can make sure that your pup gets the best when it comes to treating and preventing fleas. All our brands are vet recommended flea treatments. 

Our brands

Our vet-approved treatments include known brands and protect your dog against all the nasties including fleas, ticks, mites, mange, and all intestinal worms. That means no more scratching for your doggo! Our solutions are tailored around your pet’s age, weight, breed, and medical conditions. You choose your preference, and our vets make sure it’s 100% right for your pet.

Simparica chewables

Simparica liver chews treat fleas, ticks, and mites. They are a great option for those clever pups who can detect any tablet, as they are a treat in themselves. Simparica kills fleas fast. Studies show 100% of fleas are dead in 8 hours, but they start work within only 3 hours.

Revolution spot on

Revolution is an easy-to-administer, flea and worm treatment for dogs that simply works inside and out for a full month. Revolution is extremely effective in keeping dogs safe from mites too. Revolution doesn’t just eradicate the parasites on a dog’s body. It is a total flea treatment, as it reaches the flea eggs and larvae in a dog’s living spaces as well. 

Advocate spot on

An easy-to-use spot-on, Advocate is applied monthly to both help rid your dog of existing parasites and provide ongoing protection. The powerful ingredients in Advocate provide fast relief from fleas, prevents deadly heartworm, and help protect your dog and your family from most intestinal worms. Advocate covers hookworm, roundworm, and whipworm. 

Bravecto & bravecto plus

Bravecto provides long lasting flea and tick protection in single treatment. This is because Bravecto breaks the flea life cycle by killing fleas before they can lay viable eggs, providing excellent control of flea infestations. Just one Bravecto treatment starts killing fleas and ticks quickly and provides 3 months continuous protection.

Nexguard Spectra

Nexgard is a delicious, gentle, monthly chew that provides excellent parasite prevention and control for your dog from fleas, ticks and all intestinal worms except tapeworm. Nexgard contains afoxalaner, which kills fleas quickly, consistently, and persistently when given monthly for the entire duration of the treatment.

Broadline spot on

Broadline all in one protects your cat in one easy spot on. It is the only treatment for cats that covers all parasites including fleas, mites, and all intestinal worms including tapeworm. So it is a fantastic option for fussy cats that will not have worming tablets. 

Let us take care of it!

Here at Furmail, our team bulk-buy and ship direct to you, making them cheaper than vet clinics, but using the same great leading New Zealand products, making pet flea treatment price much more manageable and stress free.

We treat puppies from 8 weeks of age and as they grow you can update their weight, and we adjust the treatments to match. We keep track of when they need everything and deliver it direct to your door right on time. This includes the more regular worming treatments that puppies under 6 months require too! We promise to give your pets the best flea and worm treatments available.

Even better, it’s cheaper than going to the vet and we have a vet on hand to answer any questions you might have. If your animal has a reaction or you just want to discuss their plan, Dr Cori is available for online consults to help put your mind at ease. To learn more about how we can help you care for your pet, get in contact with us here

Pet nutrition – the basics


Pet nutrition - the basics

Pet health care is a big part of owning a pet, and diet can play an important part in that. Just like people, our furry friends need a balanced diet to keep them happy and healthy. Walking down the pet food aisle can be a bit intimidating with so many choices available. We’ll let you know all the basics you should consider when food shopping for your pets.

dog-and-cat-eating-from-bowl

Nutrition - the basics

Carbs

Carbs like starch, sugar, and fibre provide your pet with energy and help the digestive system function properly. Carbs are normally found in animal food containing wheat, rice, or vegetables.

Fats

Fats are a massively important part of your pet’s diet. Fats are their main source of energy, keep fur and skin healthy, help absorb vitamins, and protect organs. For cats and dogs, their main source of fats will be animal fats.

Proteins

While also providing energy, proteins help with cell growth, muscle repair, and regular body maintenance. They’re also the source of essential amino acids that must be provided through your pet’s diet. Protein comes from meat, and some veggies can be high in protein too.

Vitamins and minerals

If your pet has a balanced diet, they should be getting all the vitamins and minerals they need, so you won’t need to supplement them unless it is recommended by your vet.

Every pet is different.

So, now you know what pets generally need, but what about your pet specifically? The thing is, all pets are different, and what may be the perfect diet for one pet may not work well for another. Size, age, weight, breed, and overall health can all be deciding factors in what your pet should be eating. 

How old is your pet?

Your pet’s diet will change as they grow. Kittens and puppies need a lot of protein to make sure they are growing healthily, while too much protein in older animals can cause health problems.

cat-licking-lips

Know your pet food labels.

It can be hard to get quality pet food from the supermarket. Always check the label for the contents. Cats in particular need the amino acid taurine as their body can’t produce it naturally. Taurine is found in meat and fish products and so cats as carnivores require a high protein diet to get adequate levels of this amino acid. They need this for normal vision, digestion, and heart muscle function. Most supermarket labels will have taurine added in as a separate product, which means the meat content is not actually high enough without it. 

As a general rule, adult cats require a crude protein level of 26% in their diet. Adult dogs require 18-22%, so check your labels to make sure this is a feature.

Beware buzz words and fad diets.

Just like in the human world, the pet world can also be swept up by fancy fad diets and buzzwords to make pet food seem better or healthier for your pet. Things like “grain free” and “raw” diets for pets have been popping up everywhere. The reality is they are not necessarily beneficial for your cat or dog. Dogs have adapted to be able to process cooked food more efficiently, so if feeding a raw diet, it needs to be fresh as raw meat can cause health issues due to salmonella poisoning and more. Stick to what you know works for your pet or use a provider that is nutritionally balanced.  

If in doubt, talk to your vet.

If you are struggling to find the right balance for your pet, or if you just want some advice on what they need, talk to our team. They should be able to help you find exactly what works best for your pet and keep them happy and healthy.

Diet is only part of a healthy pet lifestyle.

While diet sets a great base for a healthy fur baby, it’s important to have a pet health care plan in place to keep everyone living a happy and healthy life. That’s where Furmail can help. Learn more about what we can do for your pet.

XOX
The Team at Furmail.