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Matt Young's blog

FACT CHECK- is peanut butter safe for dogs?

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fact check overwritten on a picture of a typed sign that has been doing the rounds on social saying that peanut butter contains xylitol and is toxic to dogs

There has recently been an image of a typed sign doing the rounds which claims that some peanut butters contain xylitol and can be toxic to dogs.

What is xylitol?

Xylitol is a sugar alcohol which is manufactured and used as an artificial sweetener to replace sugar. It has a lower glycaemic index than sugar and is safe in all species except for dogs.

Is Xylitol toxic to dogs? 

Yes, Xylitol is toxic to dogs. There are 2 clinical causes of xylitol toxicity in dogs:

Will desexing calm my dog?

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down laying on it's back on fake grass with it's hands over it's ears and eyes shut

There are lots of good reasons to desex your dog but this is not one of them. 

Can desexing change my dog's behaviour?

Yes, but it doesn't really have a very significant effect. When dogs are castrated, neutered or speyed the reproductive organs are removed and this causes a reduction in testosterone for the males and oestrogen in the females. Removal of these hormones can effect behaviour and in particular removal of testosterone can reduce the degree of aggression towards other dogs.

How to tell if your dog has been bitten by a red-bellied black snake

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A red belly black snake in green grass with the caption: How to tell if your dog's been bitten

The most common type of snake found in our area is the red-bellied black snake. They are not a particularly aggressive snake but we do see alot of bites in dogs as the dogs will corner the snake and bite them (so of course the snake bites back in defense). If you've found a red-bellied black snake and aren't sure if your dog was bitten here are some ways to tell:

1. Look for a bite

The fangs of the snake cause a puncture wound and the venom then causes the muscles around the wound to break down. The area becomes very inflamed. The bite wounds are usually:

Rabbit dandruff

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A black and white lop ear rabbit with dandruff

The most common cause of dandruff in rabbits is fur mites also known as walking dandruff or Cheylettiella. 

The cause

This is caused by mites which live in the fur of the animal. The mites cause itchiness and irritate the skin which then starts to produce dandruff. Sometimes clumps of hair will fall out or be pulled out due to irritation.

dandruff and red skin on a rabbit's skin

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New product review: Oravet Dental Hygiene Chews

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oravet dental chews packaging

Oravet Dental Hygeine Chews are a daily chew that your dog can enjoy chewing on. 

There are broadly 2 ways of preventing periodontal disease:

  1. mechanical cleaning (eg. using a toothbrush)
  2. chemically cleaning (eg. toothpaste to reduce plaque formation)

Oravet chews offer both of these methods. By doing these they are better than other treats such as greenies which rely on mechanical cleaning only. 

They come in a box which contains individually sealed chews. The idea is to give 1 chew each day. 

Greyhounds need your help

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Sage the greyhound lounging around

Following the NSW government's announcement of their decision to close down the greyhound industry in NSW, we have been inundated with retired greyhounds looking for a second chance.

Without your help these greyhounds have a bleak future

It is our aim along, with our friends at Wollongong Animal Rescue Network (WARN), to save as many of these dogs as we can and find them a loving home. 

Killer Virus Hits Dapto Dogs

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Dog being treated for parvovirus in isolation cage

There has been a spike in the number of cases of parvovirus in Dapto in recent times and this mainly because there is an increasing population of unprotected dogs. All of the cases we have seen have been adolescent dogs that did not receive their full course of vaccinations when they were young. Canine Parvovirus is a killer virus. Even with intensive treatment many dogs don’t survive.

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