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Raw meat and bones diets for dogs: are they fab or are they a fad?

The mainstream media seems to feature a continual flow of new dietary breakthroughs for humans: from high protein to low protein, high glycaemic index, gluten-free, Paleolithic, alkaline, the list goes on and on. The pet world isn’t immune from a similar trend, and a visit to the local pet shop will present you with a bewildering proliferation of options. The standard conventional choice is tinned, sachets or dry food, but within those brackets, there’s anything from the cheapest generic type to the most costly human-style meals. And as if that wasn’t enough, there’s the type of feeding that most vets don’t seem to like talking about: raw diets. You can buy raw diets fresh or frozen, and there seems to be a convincing argument for their use.
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Acne: human teenagers aren’t the only ones to suffer from spots

Adolescents of many different species are afflicted by the common and upsetting skin condition known as acne. So-called ‘spots’ are more visible in humans, because of our hairless faces. In pets, the red, swollen blotches of acne are hidden under a coat of fur, so they are disguised, but they still happen.
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Why do dogs shake?

dog shake imageSometimes our dogs shake; from great big body rocks when they have been for a swim (the closer to you the better!), to tiny trembles, either all over or just in one limb. But why do they do it and should we be concerned?
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The Itchy and Scratchy Show – pet style!

It always makes me laugh when I catch myself internally chastising itchy animals which are hurting themselves by constantly scratching .“Why doesn’t it just stop scratching?!” I ask myself. Then I think of my recent situation, where, as a keen but incompetent vet student, I was excited to get to scrub into surgery – which means having sterile hands. Hands scrubbed and gloved, I developed a rather inconvenient nose-itch. When facial contortions offered no relief, I sheepishly asked an ungloved vet nurse to scratch my nose for me. A bonding experience, some would say…

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Why do dogs wag their tails?

There are few things more cheering than the sight of a wagging tail but what is your dog actually trying to tell you?  Certainly, it can indicate happiness but also a lot of other things as well!

  • A tail held high and vigorously wagged from side to side indicates its owner is happy and ready to play.
  • A tail held level with the body and wagged more slowly shows that the dog is in a situation where they are not quite sure what is going on but are interested and paying attention.
  • A tail held low and wagging only a little or twitching, is often showing that the dog is feeling threatened and you should approach and handle them with caution.
  • A tail tucked up and under the body means that the dog is frightened and showing submission.  With reassurance they may start to feel more confident but again, you should take care with them to ensure they don’t progress to growling, or even biting, to make the perceived threat retreat.
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