Spring is coming, and the vegetation around us is coming to life. Certainly, us and our beloved pets are accompanied by greater energy. A veterinary surgeon – Katarzyna Paluszkiewicz, told us about the changes we can observe in dogs during the spring and how to protect them from parasites.
Do dogs require special preparation for spring? What about appropriate care and nutrition? What changes can we notice in our dogs?
Spring is the time when we take our dogs to new places, to take a walk and enjoy the sun. Perhaps the most noticeable for the owner is to change the coat of his dog. This is a completely natural phenomenon. What can we do in this situation to speed up this process a little? We can comb the dog daily with soft brushes (those that will not irritate the skin) that will gently remove the undercoat. It is also worth to supplement the diet with preparations containing zinc, B vitamins (mainly biotin), vitamin A, E and omega 3 and 6; they will properly support the skin and fur. With the change in the length of the daylight, the reproductive system wakes up from winter sleep. The females get a heat, and the dogs therefore include the “journey mode” in search of love. Here it is worth considering sterilization and castration. I am a huge supporter of these treatments.
What are the advantages of sterilizing females?
The risk of unwanted pregnancies and a condition called pyometra disappears 100%. Pyometra is a life-threatening condition for a bitch and usually ends in a surgical procedure. By sterilizing the bitch at a young age, we also reduce the risk of developing a milk strip. Besides, let’s remember one thing that sterilizing our bitch we care for her comfortable old age. It is also worth castrating dogs to avoid bites, escapes and uncontrolled reproduction of animals. From the medical side, we protect the dog against prostatic hypertrophy and prostate inflammation. You should talk to your veterinarian about other advantages of castration and sterilization.
Anything else we should remember?
A slim dog in good shape is a healthy dog. Remember to take a bottle of water and a dog bowl for a walk. It is also important to check our dog’s health book if he has the necessary vaccinations. Vaccination against rabies is obligatory and you should vaccinate your dog every year. Supplementary vaccinations are vaccinations against infectious diseases. These are not compulsory vaccinations, but every responsible veterinarian will urge the owners of the poop to these vaccinations because direct contact with other dogs and their secretions and excretions can lead to infection.
We know that fleas belong to the most arduous parasites. How to protect our dogs from fleas in spring?
Fleas are parasites that occur throughout the year. Their bites lead to a disease called as allergic flea dermatitis. Our dog does not have to have a flea taboo to scratch. All you need is one flea that will jump on it during the walk, it will bite and the dog will scratch itself, because the flea saliva is a very strong allergen, especially in very sensitive individuals. During a veterinary visit, the aim of which is to eliminate pruritus in a dog, the first thing performed by a doctor is to look for fleas. Let’s protect our pupils against fleas throughout the year. There are many preparations available on the market that will protect our dog from unwanted parasites. There are collars, spot drops (droplets on the neck), now also taste tablets are popular, which are very effective and not only for fleas, ticks but also for other parasites, for example on the Demodex or Scabies. Fleas transmit tapeworm larvae, so swallowing a flea is a source of worming for a dog, and infested pooch is also a source of infection for us. Especially when there are children at home, because they do not always remember to wash their hands before meals.
Should we protect our dogs from other parasites? If so, before what and why?
In addition to fleas, ticks are very persistent. They not only attack in the forest, but also in the park or in the city lawn. They are very dangerous because they carry many vector diseases, such as Lyme disease, babesiosis, ehrlichiosis or anaplasmosis.
How to comprehensively protect our Pupil?
Above all, keep an eye on the action of flea and tick control preparations (these preparations act on two parasites at the same time), and if our dog catches ticks even while the product is working, change its formula, for example, instead of a droplet, buy droplets or tablets. And when we go with a dog in a place where there are a lot of ticks, two preparations can be used at the same time, e.g. a neck and droplets on the neck.