WE’RE two weeks into January and I hope you are sticking to your New Year’s resolutions.
When it comes to resolutions, goals and plans for the coming year, there is much discussion amongst our staff about what can be attempted (a lot), and what can be achieved (often much less).
We all make the usual ones – to be a better person, eat healthily, do more exercise and not over-indulge. Some make work-related resolutions like developing a speciality, not being so grumpy and keeping the car tidy.
I started to think should we be helping our pets make resolutions? There would be a whole list that I would love my dog to adhere to – come back immediately when called, always wee immediately when it’s raining so I don’t get so wet and stop running upstairs when you think I am not looking to lie on the luxury Wensleydale rug. Is it the time of year when we should think seriously about the health of our pets?
Weight loss programmes, improving dental care and muscular conditioning is the equivalent of eat healthy and exercise more.
Obesity is a problem in human health, but also predisposes dogs to the same conditions – heart disease, arthritis, diabetes etc. If I had my way, I think half the dogs I see every day would be put on a diet.
Our ‘chubby chums’ clinics run by nurses achieve great results and sometimes all the owner and dog need is support. Part of any weight loss programme is tailoring an exercise programme to your needs. We can formulate a plan that suits your dog, your lifestyle and your dog’s needs.
Some overweight and out-of-condition dogs really benefit from one-on-one time with Nicky, our hydrotherapist, who not only encourages and rewards a great work out, but will track muscle development and weight loss so you can see the results. It is like being measured every fortnight at Weight Watchers.
We offer advice on feeding your pet, from commercial clients and treats to special diets for dogs with, for example, joint disease or dental hygiene issues. We are almost impartial when it comes to brand – I say almost as we all have our favourites.
So have a look at your pet and ask them what they want to improve in the New Year. It might just be more trips to the beach, but call us if there is anything you want to discuss. We are always happy to talk about prevention of disease, it is a welcome change from the normal consultation.
Oh and it looks like Easter is on its way as lambing has started with our pedigree sheep breeders keeping our farm vets busy over the festive period.
By KATE MATHESON,
Director and Senior Vet.