Walkies in the countryside

It is such a joy to take your dog out for a walk in the spring sunshine. Here are a few reminders of do’s and don’ts to keep them safe.


  • Keep your dog under control at all times around livestock. Especially sheep who are pregnant or have lambs with them in the spring. Farmers have every right to shoot your dog if it found worrying sheep.
  • Look out for adders if in suitable moorland habitats. They often come out to get the first warm rays of sun on them. Adder bites can be fatal to both dogs and humans – if your pet get’s bitten by an adder, seek veterinary advice immediately.
  • Remember to treat your dog with a regular flea and tick product. Monthly flea treatment is included in your Healthy Pet Club membership, so don’t forget to pick it up. Ticks can carry Lyme disease, a serious bacterial condition that can affect people as well. Ticks get onto your dog by crawling up the long grass and attaching to the coat and then burrowing into the skin.


  • Forget about Alabama rot. This disease is deadly and we still don’t know what causes it. It does seem to be most prevalent in the months December – end of March, and in certain areas in the UK. So keep vigilant. If you go for a muddy walk, always wash your dog’s legs and nose when you get home. The tell-tale signs are wounds especially on limbs which may just look like a sore or cut. Fatal kidney failure can develop in a few days, so if in doubt contact your vet.
  • Throw sticks for your dog. Every year dogs throughout the country undergo surgery to their necks and throats because they got impaled on the stick their owner had thrown for them. Some of the injuries they sustain are horrific and can be life-threatening. In other cases splinters which cannot be found, cause chronic and debilitating infections within the body, over years.
  • Use balls to throw that are too small. Small smooth balls can get stuck at the back of the mouth in the entrance to the airway and cause suffocation.

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