Tag Archives: pets

The Dangers of Homeopathic Vaccinations For Pets

My two dogs - Rory & Caleb

As an ex-vet nurse and “mum” to my two dogs, there is one thing that can get me to boiling point faster than anything else and that is people who don’t take care of their pets and provide them with adequate medical treatment when required.

Therefore, when @drunkenmadman posted a link to a place selling homeopathic vaccinations for pets my blood began to boil.

Pet Homeopath has for sale homeopathic vaccinations for distemper & parvovirus as well as preventives for heartworm and ticks.  All of the above are deadly, especially for dogs.  With the exception of distemper, I have seen dogs die of parvovirus, heartworm and ticks in my old vet practice located in Sydney.  All because owners did not either vaccinate against parvo or give their dogs heartworm medication (I can’t say anything horrible about owners whose dogs suffer ticks bites because they are damn near impossible to prevent).

So, why am I against these homeopathic vaccinations?  Because homeopathy is complete bullocks.  They don’t contain any active ingredient whatsoever.  It isn’t herbal medication, it is just water and sugar – that’s it.  Water & sugar is not going to prevent your dog during an outbreak of parvovirus which occurs every summer without fail in Sydney.

Parvovirus has a kill rate of about 50%.  It really is pure luck if your dog survives a bout of parvovirus.  The best vets can do is to put your dog on a drip and just watch as it shits and vomits out all the water content in its body.  It is one of the most gruesome ways a dog can die (and I used to watch about 20 dogs die from it each summer) and yet it is totally preventable by one yearly vaccination.

Heartworm is spread by mozzies and I don’t need to tell anyone who lives in Australia that we have a hell of a lot of mozzies.  You can’t prevent stop your dog  from being bit by a mozzie, so why risk it?  Heartworm can be prevented by one yearly vaccination or a once month spot on application.  It’s that simple and easy.  The treatment if your dog does get heartworm is extremely hard on dogs and can kill them.

Yes, there are side effects to vaccinations, but they are extremely rare in dogs.  The vast majority of dogs handle their vaccinations just fine and the once yearly trip to the vet to get them also includes a general check up so you can catch any other potential problems early.

Don’t think that by using homeopathic vaccinations that you are doing the best thing for your dog by giving them something natural. Yes, water is natural & has no side-effects but it is not going to prevent them from contracting deadly diseases.  Do the right thing and get them properly vaccinated once a year, every year.

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Blast From The Past: Just One Of Those Days

As I sit waiting for management to tell me if I am going to the US or not, which I am 99% sure they won’t bother doing, I thought I would re-visit an old post from my LiveJournal days.

It is a post about a really bad day I was having at work, where I was so pissed off, grumpy and busy that I failed to notice the dead dog on the floor.   In my defense it was a dog that we had euthanised earlier on in the day that the vet had placed on the treatment floor so that I could put it in the freezer, so it wasn’t like a dog just dropped dead and I didn’t notice. Then again, it sounds like I was having a shocker, so that very well could have happened.  Still, not one of my greatest shining moments.

So, to make myself feel slightly better about being a total doofus and missing the dead dog on the floor, let me know about when you had “one of those days” in which you did something totally stupid.

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Thank you so much for all your thoughts and opinions on the name for my new pet care blog.  As you can probably tell I have decided on Petulance – the information blog for Australian Pet Owners.  The majority of people seemed to prefer the name, plus it means that my blog will not be restricted to answering and discussing pet problems, but I can also talk about current issues involving pets, holidaying with pets and everything pet related that I could possibly think about.

At the moment, I am busy working on the design layout over at Petulance, so please excuse all the mess.  I plan to launch the site on Monday 28th January *crossed fingers*, so please come over for the grand opening.

In the meantime, if you have any pet questions, please submit them using the nifty Submit A Question page  or if you have any post ideas, great sites to link to or anything else, then put them in the Contact Me page.

Don’t worry, I won’t be abandoning you guys over here for the furry pet world, but I may be a little quiet over the next few days as I tinker around.  Then again, I might be very loud as I vent about all the things I have stuffed up.

Work and Basketball

This morning at work was a nightmare, just as I predicted. To start off the day, the cat with pancreatitis bit me on the arm. It wasn’t a nasty bite, just two parallel scratches that hurt like hell and are now all red and inflamed. Thank you horrible cat!

The rescue lady arrived an hour and a half late and left half an hour after closing – and that was only cause I was so rude to her and continually commenting on the time. I swear she would have been there for most of the day if I didn’t keep at her that I had better places to be. The clinic is still a total mess cause we couldn’t get anything done with her, her people and her millions of dogs taking up every available space and cage. I am definitely going to try to put an end to her coming to the clinic on Saturdays, we have precious little time to do the things that need to be doing let alone trying to accommodate her. Hopefully, she will be too swamped with dogs to pile the work on us this week.

To make the day worse, my WNBL team the Sydney Uni Flames lost the Grand Final. They didn’t a play a good defensive or offensive game, and were playing catch up basketball for most of the game. Still they only lost by 5 points. Maybe next year, we will get someone who can get those rebounds. Rebounding has been the team’s major downfall for the past two years.

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Just One Of Those Days

People can really piss me off at time.

Today at work, I had a lady sitting in the waiting room waiting for us to euthanise her aggressive dog. She was upset that the best thing she could do for her dog was kill it – and I don’t blame her, it is a tough decision to make. I had to go out the back to confer with Catriona about something. When I returned to the waiting room, a woman had come in with her three kids, opened the kitten cage and had them all out. WTF! What the hell was going on in her head that it is was okay to open a cage, get them out, and then give them to her bratty children? I really wanted to read her the riot act, but I had a client in the waiting room preparing for the death of her dog, so it really wasn’t appropriate. By the time, we had put the dog down (after it tried to rip my arm off during the procedure), the lady and her kids had gone. It was a pity, I was in the mood for a good yelling. I had to make do with bitching about it to Catriona.

I must have been in a state though, cause Catriona had taken the dog we just euthanised and placed it on the floor of the treatment room. I walked straight past it without noticing and continued working. It wasn’t until Catriona commented on the dog lying in the middle of the floor that I noticed it. Great nurse I am, completely missed the dead dog on the floor. It was just one of those days.

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Weird Slavic Rehab Guy

A very long day today full of surgery, but it was lacking in grooms and stupid clients, so all in all it was a good day.
We had a dog from the pound come in to be desexed before going to rescue. When we palpated her bladder during the routine exam, it felt like there was a rock in there. Sure enough, there was a huge bladder stone – about 4cm in diameter. I got a little bit over-excited when I saw it. I need to get a life outside of work, I think. The dog, which we named Eliza, also has a fractured radius which will need to be repaired. Apparently, she was so matted in the pound, that her front legs were matted to her body – how gross is that?
Weird Slavic rehab guy was also in today. I am not sure why anyone would pick a vet clinic to do rehab work in. It is an extremely physical job and you need to have enough strength to pick up heavy dogs and equip and be on your feet all day. Not sure why this is helpful for someone who has problems even walking. Anyway, rehab guy is even worse than useless and he has this incredible knack of always being in my way, especially in surgery. I lost count of the number of times I had to ask him to move so that I could access the patient in order to give injection or rehydrate body parts. He never asks what needs to be done and he seems to lose interest in a job halfway through and just stops doing it. When you are busy, the last thing you need to do is babysit someone, therefore, Kerri and I just left him in the operating room watching surgery. We have another 3 months of him… *sigh*

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Abuse and SPOs

Nothing bad happened to me today – so much for that Egyptian Day of Torment. Although now I have insulted it, I will probably get bad karma biting my ass tomorrow.
I did have an influx of stupid clients today though. Firstly a lady that rings up the clinic and asks me if I am the nurse or the vet. I tell the truth, that I am the nurse. She then says, “I don’t want to talk to you. I want to talk to the vet about whether I should bring my dog in or not.” Well, sorry for fucking existing. Actually, I am more than qualified to tell her if her dog needs veterinary attention – that’s a large part of my job.
Then we get a guy in with his Australian terrier to examine a tumor that has began to split. This mammary tumor is almost larger than the dog. It goes from the dogs’ belly and stops about an inch away from the ground. Why, it has taken him this long to do anything is completely beyond me. He had a whole sob story about being on dialysis and this dog being the only thing worth living for. Now, this dog is not a young dog and I hold grave hopes about this dog surviving the surgery. So that should add to the excitement quota for tomorrow.
An update on the dying from heart failure dog I wrote about last week, well, it is still alive and now going for short walks in the park. He is looking great, but his owners are arseholes, and as the vet said, they don’t deserve to have this dog survive. You do not turn up at 6:50pm without an appointment and expect your dog to be groomed and given a battery of tests and you certainly don’t abuse the vet nurse either. Then when you do bother to book your dog in for a day in hospital, you don’t wait until 6:45pm to pick it up! They honestly have no idea how severe the condition that their dog has and were horrified to learn that it won’t live until it is 14. If it sees its next birthday, it will be a miracle. Gods, people piss me off. Hmmm… maybe I did have that Egyptian Day of Torment after all, and I haven’t even started to go on about the weird rehab Slavic man we have working at our clinic three days a week now.

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Never say that it is quiet

Work today started off being extremely quiet. Did a few x-rays of a labrador with OCD in both shoulders. Spent a lot of time playing with the kittens. Then I mentioned to Todd that it was quiet. Shouldn’t have done that. Hell broke loose soon afterwards. I had client come in who wanted to debate the drugs that Catriona had left for her to pick up. Whilst, I was trying to work out exactly what she wanted a lady walked in with a dog in her arms and sat down. I must admit that I didn’t take much notice of her. It wasn’t until about 5 minutes later when she approached the counter, that I noticed that the dog she had in her arms was covered in blood. The dog, a little Maltese, had been attacked by a “larger dog”. I am not certain what kind of dog as the lady’s English wasn’t too great. Got the dog rushed out the back and stablised. I returned out the front to be accosted by a lady with a notepad demanding the name of the lady who just went out the back with the injured dog. She wanted to complain about the dog that had just been attacked. I didn’t have time to tell her I couldn’t give out patient details when the dog lady came back out. I decided not to get involved and let them two sort things out. All whilst this is going on, the owners of the labrador with OCD had been waiting patiently. I was waiting for them to start complaining and demanding to see a vet, but they didn’t, instead they went out for coffee whilst we worked on the Maltese. We ended up seeing them about an hour after their appointment time, and not once did they complain. Gods, I wish all of our clients were this understanding. The maltese, Tobi, is currently on a drip. He sustained two puncture wounds in his chest, a fractured canine tooth and another puncture wound on his muzzle. His x-rays didn’t show any critical damage like a punctured lung or ruptured diaphragm, but he did have a huge mass of air underneath his skin. Only time will tell what the extent of his injuries would be. However, he managed to jump off the x-ray table and take himself on a tour of the OR, so hopefully, he has no major injuries. I am never going to complain that it is quiet ever again.

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