Is bad dog breath normal or does your dog need to see a vet dentist?

East Renfrewshire dog owners are no strangers to the unique scents that come with pet ownership, but one smell that often raises concern is bad dog breath. While it’s not uncommon for dogs to have occasional odorous breath, persistent bad breath, or halitosis, can indicate underlying health issues that require attention.

Our Vet Richard Black has put together the following article about the causes of bad dog breath, when it’s normal, and when it’s a sign of something more serious. Don’t forget that the nurses at Rouken Glen Vets can demonstrate tooth brushing – call us on 0141 620 2580 to get booked in for a doggy dental demonstration!

Book a nurse appointment

Normal causes of bad dog breath

Occasional bad breath in dogs is not unusual and can be attributed to factors like eating smelly foods, chewing on certain toys, or simply waking up from a nap. If your dog’s breath is only temporarily bad and improves after a short time, it’s likely nothing to worry about:

  • Diet: According to Richard, the food your dog eats can have a significant impact on their breath. Some dog foods may contribute to stronger odours, whilst high-quality diets teamed with practising good dental hygiene can help minimise it.
  • Oral hygiene: Just like humans, dogs need proper dental care. Without it, plaque and tartar can build up, leading to bad breath. Regular brushing and dental check-ups at Rouken Glen Vets are essential.
  • Chewing habits: Dogs often chew on various objects that can affect their breath. However, the action of chewing on dental toys and (safe) bones can help naturally clean their teeth and reduce bad breath.

Abnormal causes of bad dog breath

Persistent and extreme bad dog breath is not normal and is one of the signs of dental disease and some illnesses:

  • Dental disease: Persistent bad breath is often a sign of dental issues such as gum disease, tooth decay, or infected gums. Richard advises that these conditions can lead to severe health problems if left untreated.
  • Digestive problems: Sometimes, digestive issues can cause foul-smelling breath. Gastrointestinal problems or an upset stomach can result in odorous breath.
  • Oral infections: Infections in the mouth, throat, or respiratory system can lead to bad breath. These infections need prompt medical attention.
  • Underlying medical conditions: In some cases, bad breath can be a symptom of underlying medical conditions like diabetes, kidney disease, or liver problems.

Taking action

As with all dog health concerns, prevention is better than cure, and early intervention is always the best route as this will give your pet the best chance of a fast recovery. Richard recommends that dog owners in East Renfrewshire should take note of the advice below:

  1. Regular dental care: Establish a routine of brushing your dog’s teeth regularly and providing dental chews or toys designed to promote good oral health.
  2. Diet: Feed your dog a balanced diet with dental-friendly options. Talk to our team for dietary recommendations.
  3. Veterinary check-ups: Schedule regular check-ups with our team, including dental exams, to catch and address any potential issues early.
  4. Stay alert: Pay attention to changes in your dog’s breath. If it becomes consistently foul, contact us to book a dental check-up.
  5. Professional cleaning: When necessary, our vets may recommend a professional dental scale & polish to address any existing dental problems.

While some degree of bad dog breath is normal, persistent and foul-smelling breath should not be ignored. It’s often a sign of an underlying issue that requires attention. Regular dental care, a balanced diet, and vigilant observation of your dog’s health can help keep their breath fresh and their overall wellbeing in check.

Contact our vets at Rouken Glen Vets on 0141 620 2580 to discuss your dog’s dental care and how you can help at home.

Book a nurse dental appointment

Why winter heat stroke in dogs isn’t to be sniffed at

Not many dog owners would consider heat stroke in dogs to be an issue once the weather starts to get colder. Vet Richard Black advises that although this condition is typically associated with summer, there are certain circumstances that could increase the risk of your canine companion becoming affected by heat stroke in winter too. Keep Rouken Glen Vets’ phone number stored in your mobile and contact us if you need our help – 0141 620 2580.

Contact us if your dog has heat stroke symptoms

Why some dogs get heat stroke in winter

Overheated indoor spaces

If your home is overheated due to malfunctioning heating systems, excessive use of space heaters, or a closed-off room with poor ventilation, Vet Richard Black advises that your pet may be at risk of heat stroke. Ensure that indoor temperatures are comfortable for your dog and not excessively warm.

Leaving pets in cars

Pets left unattended in parked vehicles during winter can still be at risk of heat stroke if the vehicle’s interior becomes too warm. The sun’s rays can heat the car’s interior even on a cold day. On the flip side, being left in a cold vehicle can lead to hypothermia.

Overdressing

While it’s essential to keep pets warm during winter walks in and around Giffnock, over-dressing them in heavy coats or sweaters can cause them to overheat. Ensure that your pet’s attire is appropriate for the weather and temperature conditions. If left alone indoors, extra layers should be removed and blankets used to warm up your pet, allowing them to move out from under them if they get too warm.

Exertion during cold weather

When dogs engage in strenuous physical activity, like running or playing fetch, they can generate enough body heat to become overheated even in cold weather. Vet Richard Black recommends watching out for signs of overheating during winter activities – see below.

How to prevent heatstroke this winter

  • Provide a comfortable indoor environment with regulated temperatures.
  • Avoid leaving pets unattended in parked vehicles, even in cold weather.
  • Monitor pets for signs of overheating during outdoor activities, and take breaks as needed.
  • Dress pets appropriately for the weather, considering their breed and size.
  • When indoors, warm your dog with blankets instead of dog clothing.
  • Check heating devices or appliances in the home that could lead to excessive indoor heat.

Remember, the signs of heat stroke in dogs can include heavy panting, drooling, weakness, vomiting, and even collapse.

If you suspect your pet is experiencing heat stroke, seek immediate veterinary help by calling Rouken Glen Vets on 0141 620 2580 and take steps to cool your pet down gradually while waiting for professional help.

Contact us if your dog has heat stroke symptoms

Booking a UK staycation or holiday abroad soon?

Are you planning on starting 2024 with a holiday? If so, good on you! If you plan to take your dog with you, then read on for Vet Richard’s top tips on how to plan for your holiday.

Not taking your dog on holiday with you? No problem – download our list of questions to ask kennels whilst you research your dog’s temporary accommodation.

Download our kennel research guide

Deciding on your destination

You need to make sure your chosen destination and accommodation have plenty of dog-friendly spaces and activities to keep them happy. Popular staycation holiday choices in the UK are log cabins or pet-friendly cottages. Some areas will only allow dogs on the beach during certain months so researching ahead will help you plan your holiday. This research can also help you work out whether your dog could need extra training or socialisation ahead of your trip.

Transport options

If you are planning on travelling abroad, Richard advises that it is essential you start planning your pet’s travel arrangements as early as possible. There will be animal health certificates and often vaccines and other health checks that need to be completed ahead of your holiday. These will be affected by time limits – learn more about pet travel.

Contact Rouken Glen Vets on 0141 620 2580 to organise a travel appointment for your dog.

If you are planning a staycation in the UK, make sure your chosen transport is suitable for your dog and the holiday you’ve chosen. More remote destinations will need car transport, which could be an issue if your dog becomes car sick. Trains and ferries may be a necessary part of the journey to your holiday destination – how would your dog cope with these?

Protect your pet

Before you leave for your holiday, ensure you have researched local vets near your destination just in case your dog requires veterinary treatment whilst away. You also need to make sure your pet’s microchip and collar ID tag have the most up-to-date contact details recorded. Richard wants to stress this to anyone planning a trip with their dog; if you become separated whilst away, it is essential that a veterinary professional/animal shelter can get hold of you.

If you are holidaying abroad, keep your dog’s vaccine certificates, clinical history, and their animal health certificates to hand. To request a copy of your dog’s clinical history, contact our reception team on 0141 620 2580.

It’s also worth checking that your pet insurance policy covers your dog for unexpected veterinary expenses, in case emergency veterinary treatment is needed, also if going abroad. Plus, whether in the UK or abroad, our Vet Richard recommends taking along a pet first aid kit for minor injuries – contact us if you need advice on what to put in it.

Essentials to pack for your dog

Remember to pack your dog’s food, treats, feed/water bowls, collar, lead and harness, toys, bedding, grooming equipment and poo bags. Their bed and blankets will help them feel comfortable and secure in their new surroundings.

By carefully planning and preparing for your early bird holiday with your dog, you’ll be able to create wonderful memories together while ensuring their safety, health, and happiness throughout the trip. Contact us on 0141 620 2580 if you have any questions about taking your dog on holiday and need some veterinary advice.

Alternatively, if you’re not taking your pet on holiday with you,

Download our helpful kennel research guide

Canine Christmas dangers advice from Vet Richard Black

As Christmas creeps closer, we start to see an increase in the number of dogs admitted to Rouken Glen Vets for seasonally related illnesses and injuries. Vet Richard Black wants to make owners aware of the risks that come with seemingly harmless Christmas décor and food and encourage them to use our Pet Proofing PDF guide at home in the run-up to Christmas.

How To Pet Proof Your Home For Christmas

The sooner your dog receives veterinary treatment for any of the conditions below, the better chance they have for a smooth recovery. Contact Rouken Glen Vets on 0141 620 2580 if you think your dog could need emergency veterinary treatment.

Toxic substances for dogs

  • Chocolate
  • Grapes and raisins
  • Alcohol
  • Nuts – especially macadamia nuts
  • Chives
  • Garlic
  • Leeks
  • Onions and shallots
  • Caffeine
  • Xylitol – an artificial sweetener

Many of the food and substances above can be found on a buffet table, or around the house at Christmas time so keep watch of your dog and make sure they do not eat anything toxic. Richard advises that foods with a lot of salt, sugar, or spice can lead to digestive issues and more serious health problems too.

What happens if my dog eats something toxic?

If you know your dog has eaten something poisonous, then call us immediately. Even if you are suspicious, still treat it as a veterinary emergency.

It is essential you let the team at Rouken Glen Vets know what your dog has eaten and roughly how much and when, as this will impact their treatment.

Christmas Decorations

  • Tinsel
  • Baubles and tree ornaments
  • Wrapped presents and gift wrapping
  • Electric lights and cables
  • Candles
  • Real Christmas trees
    • Pine needles can puncture or irritate the lining of your dog’s stomach and the oils can irritate the mucous membranes
    • The water in the Christmas tree stand can contain harmful chemicals, bacteria, or preservatives that may be toxic if ingested by dogs

The decorations and items listed above can be toxic but also cause intestinal blockages, digestive issues or burns that will require immediate veterinary attention. Vet Richard Black advises that it’s best to keep these items out of your dog’s reach and to consider using cable covers or a tree skirt to block their access to the tree and lights!

Remember to download our Pet Proofing Your Home Guide to help you get your place set up for a safe and smooth Christmas for all – download now.

Stress, anxiety, and overindulgence

Around Christmas time, it is normal for dog owners in East Renfrewshire to see more visitors. This could be a cause of stress for your dog, and they may start to display digestive problems, behavioural issues, or even attempt escape. Ensure your dog has a safe space to retreat to away from the busy Christmas celebrations so they can relax when needed.

Also, as with humans, dogs tend to overindulge on special treats and edible Christmas presents. Remember to feed these, often rich foods, in moderation as part of their balanced diet to avoid tummy upsets and weight gain.

To keep your dog safe this festive season, Vet Richard Black urges you use the advice above and download our Pet Proofing guide for your home. Contact Rouken Glen Vets on 0141 620 2580 if you are at all concerned about your dog – we wish you a Merry Christmas!

Pet Proof Your Home This Christmas

Vets in Giffnock explain heart disease risks in dogs

Sadly, heart disease is almost as common in dogs as it is in humans, especially as they age. Vet Richard Black and the rest of the veterinary team at our Giffnock practice, have pulled together their answers to commonly asked questions about heart disease in dogs. We want to help local pet owners understand why it’s so important their dogs attend regular health checks.

In its early stages, canine heart disease tends to be difficult to detect, so annual screening is important – Book a heart health check-up for your dog today.

Spotting Heart Disease at home

Common questions on Canine Disease

What types of heart diseases affect dogs?

  1. Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM): A condition where the heart muscle becomes weak and enlarged, leading to poor pumping function.
  2. Mitral Valve Disease (MVD): A condition where the mitral valve of the heart degenerates, leading to leakage of blood and reduced heart efficiency.
  3. Aortic Stenosis (AS): A common congenital heart defect in large breed dogs, typically caused by a ridge or ring of fibrotic tissue condition in the subaortic region.
  4. Pericardial effusion: An acquired cardiovascular disease in dogs, where excessive fluid accumulates within the pericardial sac, affecting the heart’s ability to pump effectively.

Are certain breeds more likely to develop canine heart disease?

According to Vet Richard Black, yes, some dog breeds are predisposed to certain types of heart disease. Just like in humans, genetics can play a significant role in the development of heart conditions in dogs. Some breeds are more prone to specific heart issues due to inherited traits and genetic factors, such as:

Dog breeds commonly predisposed to Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM) include:

  • Boxers, Cocker Spaniels, Doberman Pinschers, Great Danes, Irish Wolfhounds, Saint Bernards

Dog breeds commonly predisposed to Mitral Valve Disease (MVD) include:

  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Chihuahuas, Dachshunds, Miniature Poodles, Pomeranians, Shih-Tzus, Small Terrier Breeds

Dog breeds commonly predisposed to Aortic Stenosis (AS) include:

  • Boxers, Bullmastiffs, German Shepherds, Golden Retrievers, Newfoundlands, Rottweilers

Dog breeds commonly predisposed to Pericardial Effusion include:

  • Afghan Hounds, Boxers, Boston Terriers, Bulldogs, French Bulldogs, German Shepherds, Golden Retrievers, Salukis, Weimaraners

Richard wants East Renfrewshire dog owners to understand that although these breeds have a higher genetic predisposition to these heart conditions, it does not mean that every dog will develop heart disease.

Download our Heart Disease Symptoms Fact Sheet

Can other factors increase the risk of heart disease in dogs?

Yes, environmental factors (including second-hand cigarette smoke) and the below factors can affect a dog’s heart health.

  1. Age: Dogs entering their senior years are more at risk – typically 5-8 years of age for very large/giant dogs, 7-10 for medium-sized dogs, and 9-12 for small dogs.
  2. Excess Weight & Obesity: Increases risk of developing heart disease due to the strain on their hearts.
  3. Poor Diet: Lacking essential nutrients can impact heart health and contribute to the development of heart disease.
  4. Lack of Exercise: Insufficient physical activity can lead to obesity and cardiovascular health issues.
  5. Heartworm Disease: Parasitic heartworms are not found in the UK but dogs travelling abroad, and adopted from overseas may be at risk.
  6. Hypertension (High Blood Pressure): Can put added stress on the heart and lead to heart disease.
  7. Thyroid Disease: Thyroid imbalances, such as hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism, can affect heart function.
  8. Infections: Certain infections, like bacterial endocarditis, can lead to heart disease in dogs.
  9. Congenital Heart Defects: Some dogs are born with structural abnormalities in their hearts that can lead to heart disease.
  10. Toxins and Medications: Exposure to certain toxins or medications can damage the heart and lead to heart disease.
  11. Cushing’s Disease (Hyperadrenocorticism): This condition, which results in excess cortisol production, can impact heart health.

Can you spot heart disease in dogs at home?

Richard says it’s important to note that some cases of heart disease may progress slowly and show mild signs, while others can become more severe and acute, leading to more pronounced symptoms. This is why monitoring and screening for heart disease is so important.

There are some symptoms of heart disease that you may spot at home. Take a look at Rouken Glen Vets’ fact sheet: Heart Disease in Dogs Symptoms

Share our guide with other dog owners and help us to help other pets in East Renfrewshire.

How will a vet test for heart disease?

During a health check with one of our team, they will perform a thorough examination, listen for any abnormal heart sounds (heart murmur) or rhythms. They may recommend further tests, such as radiographs (X-rays) and echocardiography, to evaluate your dog’s heart health accurately. This, along with any symptoms your dog is displaying during the exam, or you have told us about, will help our veterinary surgeons to determine a diagnosis.

Early detection and appropriate management can improve the prognosis and quality of life for dogs with heart disease.

Book a heart health check-up for your dog today

Rouken Glen Vets’ 4 steps to successfully toilet training your puppy

Rouken Glen Vets’ veterinary nurses know only too well that puppy toilet training is a challenging process. That’s why our nursing team have pulled together their tried and tested advice for you to follow, to ensure that your puppy grows into a well-mannered, toilet trained adult! It will take patience and consistency so don’t be afraid to ask the team at Rouken Glen Vets for help.

Contact our practice to ask our veterinary nurses for more puppy advice and read through our 4 steps below, before downloading our quick-guide that the whole family can use.

Download our puppy tips for the whole family

4 Steps to a toilet-trained pup

1. Establishing a routine & choosing a toilet area

Establishing a routine early on in your puppy’s life will help them to thrive from an early age. This routine should include a feeding, bathroom and bedtime schedule, all of which will help them to understand what you are asking them to do. Plan to take your puppy outside to a designated toilet area first thing in the morning, after meals and before bed.

Our vet nurses recommend that you should decide on a specific spot outside where you want your puppy to go to the toilet. Using this spot consistently at the times mentioned above will help to reinforce the association.

You can also use puppy training pads to avoid indoor accidents. Place them in your puppy’s crate and by the back door, but still encourage your pup to toilet outdoors.

2. Verbal cues & rewards

Choosing a verbal cue such as “toilet” or “wee-wees” to consistently use every time you take your puppy to your chosen outside toilet area, will help them understand what is expected of them. Once they have been to the toilet, you should reward them. Using praise, affection or treats will positively reinforce what it is that you are asking them to do.

3. You need patience & consistency

Toilet training can often take several months to get right. Accidents do happen but there is no need to scold your puppy as they are still learning, plus, creating a negative association with toilet time will hinder your puppy’s progress. It is wise to invest in a good quality, pet safe, carpet cleaning solution though!

4. Constant supervision

Our veterinary nurses want new or potential new owners to understand how much work is needed to keep your puppy safe and successfully toilet trained. It can be difficult but similarly to a baby, they need constant supervision in the beginning and restricted access to areas where they could hurt themselves. Why not try using a playpen to restrict access to areas of your house where they may go to the toilet; it also allows you to keep them safe at the same time.

What else should you teach your puppy?

Alongside toilet training, there are a number of other basic commands that you should teach your puppy:

  • “Sit” – useful to keep your puppy calm in new situations.
  • “Come” – this is important to teach them for their safety when walking off-lead.
  • “Stay” – another command to help keep them safe. Such as if they need to remain in one place or if the door is open to let a visitor in.
  • “Leave it” – this can help your puppy avoid ingesting harmful objects or ruining your possessions!
  • Walking on a loose lead is another useful technique to establish early. It allows for calm, more enjoyable walks without the fear they could run into traffic.

Toilet training, once it is established, makes a huge difference to your lifestyle moving forward. It allows your puppy to visit new houses, friends, go on dog-friendly holidays – the opportunities are endless. Investing the time early on with your puppy will ensure success in the future.

Get the above tips in an easy-to-use downloadable PDF that you can print & stick on your fridge to remind your whole family what’s needed for success.

Download our puppy toilet training tips

Don’t hesitate to contact Rouken Glen Vets to chat to our experienced team of veterinary nurses who can advise further on all aspects of puppy healthcare, nutrition, and training – get in touch.

Fireworks – how you can help your dog keep calm

The team at Rouken Glen Vets on Rouken Glen Road believe that it is never too early for dog owners to start preparing for the upcoming firework season. The bright lights and loud noises of fireworks can cause dogs an unprecedented amount of stress. To minimise your pet’s stress levels and to reduce the risk of them injuring themselves, and if you are concerned as to how your dog will react to fireworks, then we recommend you book an appointment at Rouken Glen Vets to discuss what options are available to help your dog.

Contact us about calming products in advance

There are products you can invest in that work well at keeping dogs calm, however, as each dog is unique, it is important to discover what works for them. Examples of these are:

  • Calming supplements – these promote relaxation and come in various forms, such as dog chews, tablets and liquids. They tend to use ingredients thought to contain calming properties such as chamomile, valerian root and L-theanine.
  • Thundershirts – a vest that provides constant but gentle pressure to your dog’s body. This will have a calming effect, similar to a baby being swaddled.
  • Pheromone diffusers – these release synthetic, man-made pheromones mimicking the natural calming pheromones released by dogs. These diffusers will help to reduce their anxiety levels during firework season.
  • Prescription medication – there are a number of different medications that could be prescribed by our team at Rouken Glen Vets. Sedatives and anti-anxiety medication amongst others, can medically help to reduce your dog’s anxiety by reducing the serotonin levels in their brain. There are either long-acting or short-acting options available and both will need to be dispensed and their dosage prescribed by a vet who has examined your dog. Book an appointment with us at our Rouken Glen Road surgery to discuss these.

As well as the products above, there are a number of different management techniques you can try at home to make firework season easier for your dog:

  1. Walk your dog during daylight hours and make sure they are snuggled up indoors when it goes dark.
  2. Create a safe space for your dog to hide when they’re feeling anxious. This could be a quiet corner of a room, away from a window and its essential they feel like they’re in control in this area. Once they take themselves to that area, do not interfere with your dog.
  3. Use their favourite toys/bedding/treats in this area so they start to associate positively with it and ensure they have access to it at all times.
  4. Muffle the sound of fireworks by shutting windows and black out the light flashes by drawing the curtains/blinds.
  5. Putting on the television or playing music in the background will help distract your dog – Classic FM’s pet classics is a hit for pets across the country, learn more about this here.

There are a number of different ways that owners can help their dogs during firework season, but our team of experienced vets can also advise and help when needed. Book an appointment with our team well in advance of any firework events in Giffnock to give your pet the best chance at a calm firework season.

Contact us about pet calming products

Puppy Neutering – what you need to know

Part of being a responsible pet owner is making the decision to have your puppy neutered. Not only does this prevent any unwanted litters, but it also provides your puppy with many different benefits.

Take a look at Rouken Glen Vets’ guide to puppy neutering below and contact our team if you have any further questions.

Contact us for more advice

Population Control

Neutering your puppy helps to control the population of dogs in East Renfrewshire and further afield. Many shelters and rescue organisations are overcrowded with unwanted dogs and neutering your puppy can help prevent unwanted litters that could contribute to this problem.

Health Benefits

Our Vet Richard advises that neutering can have health benefits for both male and female dogs. For male dogs, neutering can reduce the risk of certain types of cancers, and it can help prevent testicular and prostate problems. For female dogs, spaying (the female equivalent of neutering) can reduce the risk of breast cancer, ovarian cysts, and uterine infections. Contact our team today for more information on these conditions.

Behavioural Benefits

Neutering can also have behavioural benefits for dogs. Male dogs that are castrated are less likely to roam or exhibit sexually aggressive behaviour. Female dogs that are spayed are less likely to exhibit behaviour associated with their heat cycles, such as crying or restlessness. They will also not be hassled by male dogs for being in season when out walking.

Timing it Right

The timing of neutering can vary depending on the breed of dog and Rouken Glen Vets’ recommendations. In general, most puppies are neutered between six and nine months of age. However, some breeds may benefit from being neutered earlier or later. It is important to discuss the timing of neutering with one of our vets to determine the best approach for your individual dog. Contact our team today.

The Neutering Process

The process of neutering is slightly different for male and female dogs.

In males, the testicles are removed through a small incision in the scrotum. In females, the ovaries and uterus are removed through an incision in the abdomen. The surgery is performed under general anaesthesia and your dog will require some recovery time to heal. Our team of nurses will be able to advise on what healthy healing should look like in your own dog once they are discharged from Rouken Glen Vets.

So, there you have it – we hope you found our vet’s advice on everything you need to know about neutering a puppy helpful. To summarise, puppy neutering can have many benefits, including population control, health benefits, and behavioural benefits. It is important to discuss the pros and cons of neutering with your vet to determine the best approach for your individual puppy.

Contact us for more advice

How to have a smooth and travel sick-free UK dog holiday

Rouken Glen Vets understands how exciting it can be taking your furry friend on a UK holiday. However, it’s important to keep in mind that dogs have specific needs and require proper care and attention to stay healthy. Our Head Vet Richard has put together some essential tips to help you keep your dog happy whilst on holiday in the UK.

We’ve also got an invaluable guide on how to improve your dog’s travel sickness woes here:

Download our holiday travel sickness guide

Dog Friendly Holiday Checklist

Pack essentials

When packing for your UK holiday, make sure to pack your dog’s essentials. This includes food, water, treats, and any medication your dog requires. You should also bring a lead, poo bags, and their favourite toys to keep them entertained.

Research dog-friendly accommodations

Before booking your accommodation, research what dog-friendly options are available. Many hotels, cottages and campsites in the UK are dog-friendly, but it’s important to check the rules and regulations beforehand. Some accommodations may have restrictions on the size or breed of the dog, while others may charge an additional fee. Ask friends and family what dog-friendly accommodation they know of and our team of animal lovers may also have some recommendations!

Exercise regularly

Dogs require regular exercise to stay healthy and happy. When on a UK holiday, make sure to take your dog for daily walks or runs to keep them active. You can also explore dog-friendly beaches or parks to give your dog more space to run and play. Head Vet Richard also recommends, depending on the length of your commute, stopping to let your dog stretch their legs and go to the toilet. Going on a UK holiday is usually a much longer journey than what your pet is used to so breaking it up can help keep them comfortable whilst travelling.

Provide adequate rest

While it’s essential to keep your dog active, it’s equally important to provide adequate rest. Dogs require proper sleep to stay healthy and happy, so make sure to provide them with a comfortable place to sleep. Richard recommends taking familiar blankets and if you can squeeze it in, take their usual bed to make sure your dog is comfortable for the duration of your stay.

Keep them hydrated

Make sure your dog has access to clean and fresh water at all times. This is especially important during hot weather, as dogs can become dehydrated quickly. Carry a water bottle and portable bowl with you when out and about to ensure your dog stays hydrated. Richard also wants owners to remember to not walk their dogs during the hottest part of the day on Summer holidays.

Follow local rules and regulations

When on a UK holiday with your dog, it’s important to follow local rules and regulations. Many public places such as beaches and parks have specific rules for dogs, such as requiring them to be on a lead, only allowing them access during certain months or limiting the number of dogs per person.

In conclusion, keeping your dog healthy and happy on a UK holiday requires proper planning and preparation. With these tips, you can ensure that your furry friend has a happy and healthy holiday alongside you. If you know somebody who is planning a UK holiday with their dog, share this article with them.

Don’t forget to download our travel sickness guide for dogs to ensure your staycation commute goes smoothly for both you and your pet!

Avoid travel sickness on holiday with these tips

Rouken Glen Vets have tips for dealing with anxiety in dogs

Just like us, dogs can suffer from anxiety. There are many different causes, and each dog will be different. Sometimes there may have been an event that has caused the dog to learn to be anxious, and some dogs just seem to have anxiety in their nature. Separation anxiety is fairly common in dogs and can happen whenever they are away from their owner or another person/pet they are close to, even for a short period of time.

Looking out for signs of anxiety in dogs is important so that the cause can be investigated and a treatment plan, that will often include behavioural modifications, can be put in place.

Pet Anxiety Week is in May and so the veterinary team at Rouken Glen Vets in East Renfrewshire have put together a list of signs for dog owners to look out for at home below.

Contact us if you notice the signs

Eight common signs of anxiety in dogs

  1. Destruction
  2. Behavioural changes
  3. Excessive urination/defecation 4
  4. Overgrooming
  5. Excessive panting
  6. Pacing
  7. Withdrawal
  8. Excessive vocalisation

This list is not exhaustive, and not all may be present, but it gives East Renfrewshire pet owners an idea of what to look for.

How to reduce stress for your dog

There are many things you can try to help reduce stressful situations that might lead to anxiety in your dog, such as:

  • Desensitisation to what is causing the concern – ask our advice about this
  • Use of pheromone diffusers
  • Interactive mind games to distract
  • Creating a den or a safe space for your dog
  • Reducing stimulus by closing curtains and having a quiet space

If you recognise any of the symptoms and are concerned, our vets can advise on how to best help your dog. In some cases, anxiety can be caused due to a health problem. Pain in particular can cause anxiety and so it is important to rule out any other causes. Our vet may also suggest enlisting the help of a professional behaviourist to help your dog overcome or reduce their anxiety, and they can help you manage your dog’s anxious behaviours.

It’s important to note that if your dog is experiencing separation anxiety in particular, it can take a long time and a lot of patience, commitment, and training to turn things around for the better.

Get in touch with our team in Giffnock and they can book you an appointment with one of our vets.

Book an appointment for your dog

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