Rye Veterinary Clinic
2261 Point Nepean Rd
Rye, VIC, 3941

Phone: 03 5985 6644

Pepper and the Grass Seed

As many of you are aware it is grass seed season.  Grass seeds can enter the body anywhere but are particularly common around the feet, face, arm pit and groin.  They can cause serious damage as they can travel into body cavities, organs and even the blood stream like tiny little needles.  Treatment usually involves an anaesthetic and surgery but grass seeds that have entered the body surface can be hard to find and pets can even require referral for advanced imaging to find them and even then they can be hard to remove!

Pepper the German Shepherd presented with a couple of days of not drinking, seemed to have a sore mouth and yelped when she pulled on the lead.  She was anaesthetised and examination of her mouth revealed swelling under her tongue, around her tonsil and under her chin.  Luckily a grass seed was found in the chin when an incision was made.  It is likely the grass seed entered through the mouth and we are really hoping that this was the only seed.

Good luck with your recovery Pepper!

Contents of this newsletter

01  Dog Friendly Holiday

02  Australia Day Public Holiday

03  New Year’s resolution – how much to feed

04  Natural foods - what’s all the fuss about?

05  Do women love their pet more than they love their partner?

06  Surviving a snake bite

07  The dreaded grass seed

01 Dog Friendly Holiday

It is always an adventure to take your dog on holidays and recently Heather stayed at the Best Friend Holiday Retreat.  The retreat is located in the Tarra Valley Rainforest in South East Gippsland, Victoria and has won many awards.  Ten acres of parkland and gardens surround the retreat and there is a nearby rockpool and waterfall as well as resident koalas and birds.

Dogs are able to sleep inside the cabins and the cabins are securely fenced.  There are day use luxury kennels so that you can visit the National Park without your dog.  There are several off lead fenced exercise areas, a hydrobath and a dog playground! 

We are sure your dog would love to holiday with you here and I am looking forward to taking Ella our Greyhound especially as she is only ever off lead in our own backyard!


02 Australia Day Public Holiday

The Rye Vet Clinic will be open on Sunday January 26th from 10-12 and on Monday January 27th from 10-12.


03 New Year’s resolution – how much to feed

Looking for a New Year's resolution? One of the best things you can do for your pet this year is to feed the right amount of food. Feeding the correct amount is the key to an ideal body weight, and this can add years to your pet's happy life!

Knowing how much to feed is often confusing but we can help you get it right - here’s how:

Know your pet's ideal body weight

Any one of our knowledgable staff members can help with this. Pop in with your pet regularly for a free weight check and assessment. As a guide, you should always be able to feel your pet’s ribs and when you look at your pet from above you should be able to see a defined waist - aim for an hourglass figure! You can make sure your dog's waist isn't expanding by tracking waist measurements at home with a tape measure - measure the most narrow part of the waist about halfway in between the end of the ribs and the hips. See the photo to the left. 

Follow directions

Look at the recommendations of your pet’s food packet for how much to feed. If these show a range for your pet's weight, choose the lower end if your pet is not active and the upper end if more active. We can help you weigh out the required amount and mark it on a cup - easy!

Be prepared to adjust if necessary

If feeding other foods such as treats and dental chews, remember to reduce the amount of premium food you feed to avoid feeding too many calories. If your pet is on the porky side ask us about the range of effective weight loss foods we have available - you will be surprised how these can help your pet shed the kilos.


04 Natural foods - what’s all the fuss about?

When it comes to pet food, we realise that there are plenty of brands on the market and things can get pretty confusing with the myriad of choices out there. Many companies are promoting that their food contains all natural ingredients and is a more holistic approach to nutrition.

So what is the best food for your pet? The answer to that question is simple - a diet recommended by us. When it comes to nutrition, we are able to give you educated information and are able to recommend the most suitable diet for your pet - at every stage of their life.

All of the foods we recommend contain natural ingredients but most importantly, these are precisely balanced for optimum nutrition. This means your pet won’t receive too little or too much of certain nutrients - a claim only particular brands can make.

If you are feeling confused you should always ask us for the most accurate information - we will help you make the best decision when it comes to your pet’s nutrition.


05 Do women love their pet more than they love their partner?

A recent study in the UK revealed that one in ten women claim they love their pet more than they love their partner.

Nearly a third of 2,000 women polled said they have equal affection for their pet and husband or boyfriend.

Over half turn to their pet for comfort after a row with their significant other. Not surprisingly 39 per cent admitted that they seek affection from their pet when they get no attention from their man!

The study found a third of females let their pet sleep on their bed and 16 per cent let them sleep IN the bed.

Four in ten confess to regularly rewarding their pet with treats and 17 per cent will lavish them with presents on Christmas Day.

We’d like to hear your thoughts on our My Pet Stories Facebook page!

You can read more about the study here.

06 Surviving a snake bite

image source: www.keepcalm-o-matic.co.uk

With Australia Day on its way and nothing more Aussie than a snake, here's a timely reminder for you and your pet.

Being curious creatures, cats and dogs often end up harassing a snake and getting themselves in trouble.

Different species of snakes possess different types of venom and these can cause varying signs that appear anywhere from 15 minutes to 24 hours after a bite.

The main early signs include:

  • Salivation (drooling)
  • Enlarged pupils
  • Vomiting
  • Hind limb weakness
  • Rapid breathing
  • Depression

What you can do to help your pet survive a snake bite?

Even if you only suspect your pet has been bitten by a snake you should seek veterinary attention immediately. It is better that your pet is checked over rather than wait and be sorry.

  • If your pet has been bitten on the neck remove his collar
  • Keep your pet as STILL AS POSSIBLE - this is critical to help reduce movement of the venom around the body
  • Try to keep the bite site below the level of the heart
  • DO NOT attempt treatment options such as cold packs, ice, tourniquets, alcohol, bleeding the wound and trying to suck out venom in place of getting your pet to the vet - they are a waste of precious time

And finally... You should never attempt to kill, handle or capture the snake.

07 The dreaded grass seed

Grass seeds have pointy tips that can burrow in to your pet's skin
image source: marcthevet.com

Who knew that something so small and innocent could cause so many problems!?

Certain types of grass seeds are shaped like a pointy arrow and once caught in your pet’s fur they can start to burrow aggressively into your pet’s skin with no way of escaping.

If the seed does not exit, a painful abscess can lead to the need for surgery to remove the seed or remnants. Keep an eye out for a lump and excessive licking - often some of the first signs.

Occasionally a grass seed will end up in your dog’s ear canal leading to intense irritation. If you notice your dog is shaking his head or appears itchy around the ears, a check up with us is required.

Avoiding long grass and keeping your dog’s fur clipped short can help prevent grass seed problems. Regular checks are essential; concentrate under the paws, between the toes, around the ears and in the armpit region. Do this after every walk.

A keen eye will prevent grass seeds becoming a problem. Don’t let these little nuisances take hold!