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‘You never get a second chance to make a first impression’ and this has never been more accurate than when it comes to introducing your new cat or kitten to the rest of the four-legged family explains Rosalie Horton from Animal Behaviour Experts.

Changing territories, or as humans might say ‘I’ve just adopted a cat’, is extremely stressful for most cats. Kittens can be a little more relaxed as hopefully they have less negative experiences or maybe a little more trusting and sometimes adjust to a new home a little easier. 

Adjusting to a new home will always come down to the individual cat’s temperament and the suitability of the new environment. In order to make the smoothest transition it is imperative that the owner is prepared. A behaviourist’s mantra for working with animals is to always ‘set them up for success’. Bringing home a cat or kitten to a new home that already has a dog in the family can be stress-free for everyone if we take into consideration four factors:

  • The Cat,
  • The Dog, 
  • The Household, 
  • The Plan. 

#1. The Cat

Every cat is different. A cat or kitten’s ability to cope with change will depend on a combination of ‘nature vs nurture’ i.e. genetics, learning and the environment. 
 

Try to find out as much about your new cat or kitten prior to adoption. The cat might have a history of living with dogs, but be mindful that this does not necessarily mean that it was a peaceful one. 

Ask a behaviour professional to make an assessment on the temperament of the cat or kitten. Nervous cats get stressed easily and a dog will be perceived as a threat. 

Kittens might be a little more malleable when it comes to meeting new stimuli and might be more resilient when it comes to meeting a dog for the first time. 

There are pheromone sprays and diffusers available that will help when it comes to relocating territories and these can be a big help when it comes to meeting new people, new carriers and new households. 

#2. The Household 


In general, cats like to choose where they live and who they live with. We take this away from them when we bring them into our lives so it is important that we consider feline behaviour to make the relocation as ‘cat friendly’ as possible. 


Start by making a cat-friendly environment, aka their new territory. Make sure that the new cat or kitten will have its own territory that it feels safe in.  
A spare bedroom would be ideal. Try to make the laundry or bathroom the absolute last resort. These rooms tend to be the least comfortable rooms in the home. 

Their territory should have all the essentials: food, bed, toilet, sunshine and safety. A good tip is to use the same food and litter that it has been enjoying in its previous home, even if that was a shelter or pound. 

Set up a few hiding spots such as a cardboard box, cupboard or shelf. Cats love to hide as a means of coping with stress, so give them that option. 

Later, where they choose to rest will be a good indicator of their emotional wellbeing and you can gauge their level of happiness based on how much they are hiding or engaging with their new space. Make sure that they don’t have any unwelcome guests such as the dog in this area, no matter how much the dog is keen to investigate.  

The territory is strictly a dog-free zone and the owner will need to manage this. Make sure that the territory you choose is not a favourite place the dog likes to frequent. 

Lastly, cats like to get high. Cats and kittens feel safer when they are up high and able to look down on perceived threats, so always give them that option. 

When your cat is exploring its territory and then later as it feels comfortable to live amongst the rest of the family, always make sure that the cat has an aerial view and escape route if there’s a threat

Many cats are instinctively arboreal, so try to accommodate this in the home. This will be advantageous when dealing with a terrestrial pooch. 

#3. The Dog 

Every dog is different. Make an assessment or get advice from a behaviour professional to determine the degree of cat reactivity in your dog, prior to adopting the cat. 
 

Does your dog have a low prey drive and chase instinct? Don’t make life hard on yourself or your pets ... If you have a dog that wants to chase cats, please don’t force them to live together!

Re-evaluate what your motivation to own a cat if you have incompatible animals. 
It is possible to desensitise cats to dogs and vice versa, but do you want to put everyone through it? 

In the animal world, size matters. A big dog will be more threatening than a small dog. 

A calm or nonchalant dog will be easier to accommodate than a boisterous and noisy one. Try to take all of this into consideration when seeing the interaction through your animals’ eyes. 

#4. The Plan 

Before they meet:

Scent is nature’s way for safe conversation. Start by taking your cat's bed out for the dog to sniff and put something such as the dog’s blanket, collar or leash regularly in the cat's territory. 

The first meeting
When your new cat or kitten is ready to venture out of its territory and explore the rest of the house, make sure your dog is on a lead

Remember that this will require you to support your dog as well as your cat. Have your dog relaxed and calm (try taking them for a big run prior) and have a handful of delicious treats on hand. Ideally, having pets meet on either side of a screen door would be the best option for visually meeting each other and use their first glance as a guide if you should proceed. It might be normal for your cat to hiss when they first see the dog. 
If you see your dog start to vocalise and become aroused it might be an indicator that your dog might increase in reactivity. Make sure your cat is able to run back to its territory. If so, let this be their first meeting and try for a second date another time. 

The next step:
At the next meeting, or if you determine that your pets are coping, the cat may approach for a sniff. This would be a sign of a very confident cat but sniffing each other does not need to be the end goal. Some cats and dogs can live together harmoniously and not all have contact. 

Keep meetings short and try to end them on a positive note. You will have to be the judge of how you feel the animals are progressing. 

Never think in dangerous ways such as ‘throw them together and let them sort it out’. This is not something that any animal lover (or animal behaviour professional) would say. 

You’re trying to play cupid or perhaps just a peace-keeper when it comes to the perfect match and success comes with practice and patience

A harmonious multi-pet household is a fine art to create and manage and this relies heavily on your input. You will get out what you put in. When in doubt, seek advice from a behaviour professional who can help you navigate the road ahead. Your pets will thank you, in their own way, if you get it right. 

Now, finding room on the bed for yourself now that you have another pet is a whole new issue! 


written by Rosalie Horton, February 2019 for Australian Dog Lover (all rights reserved)



About the Writer

Rosalie (Rose) Horton is the Founder and Senior behaviour consultant at Animal Behaviour Experts, a behavioural consultancy that is comprised of a team of behavioural consultants that specialise in pet behavioural support for owners in a range of companion animal species.

Rose is a qualified animal scientist, behaviourist, trainer, zookeeper, veterinary nurse and teacher. Rose also lectures at TAFE NSW in animal behaviour and has regular media appearance and can be seen at the Cat Lovers Show in Melbourne.

For more information, please visit
animalbehaviourexperts.com.au
In cinemas on February 28, A Dog's Way Home is a heart-warming adventure - based on the best-selling book by W. Bruce Cameron - the whole family will enjoy!

As a puppy, Bella finds her way into the arms of Lucas, a young man who gives her a good home. When Bella becomes separated from Lucas, she soon finds herself on an epic 400-mile journey to reunite with her beloved owner. 

Along the way, the lost but spirited dog touches the lives of an orphaned mountain lion, a down-on-his-luck veteran and some friendly strangers who happen to cross her path.

Cast: Bryce Dallas Howard, Ashley Judd, Jonah Hauer-King, Alexandra Shipp with Wes Studi and Edward James Olmos


©2018 Columbia TriStar Marketing Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Thanks to Sony Pictures, Australian Dog Lover readers have the chance to:

*** WIN 1 of 10 in-season Family Passes *** 
(Total Prize Pool $800)

To Enter, Like & Share and Tell us "what is your all-time favourite dog movie?" via our Facebook page or @australiandoglover on Instagram (post 13/02/19)



TERMS & CONDITIONS

1. This Competition opens on Wednesday 13th February (12pm) and closes on Friday 22nd February, 2019 (9pm).
Winners will be announced on our Competitions page on Sunday 24th February 2019. This competition is open to Australian residents only.
2. To enter, like & share this post and tell us "what is your all-time favourite dog movie?"
3. This Promotion is a game of skill and chance plays no part in determining the winner.
The entries will be judged by the Australian Dog Lover team. The winning entries will be selected based on the most creative, informative or useful statement.
4. Please note you MUST LIKE our Facebook page or FOLLOW @australiandoglover on Instagram to be eligible.
5. Entrants in the competition can only enter once.
6. Prizes not claimed within 48 hours will be redrawn.
* Entry into the competition is deemed acceptance of all terms and conditions.
The story of how a dog called Ned helped to save thousands of lives is brought to life in an emotional video, released today by Forever Friends Animal Rescue (FFAR) to celebrate the charity’s eighth birthday on Thursday, 14 February 2019.

“Ned is special for so many reasons,” explains Saskia Adams, co-founder and President of FFAR. “He was my first foster animal and dispelled the myth that rescue pets are somehow damaged goods.

“Through no fault of his own, Ned found himself on death-row in a country pound. I took him in and it quickly became clear to me that Ned was a gentle soul who just wanted to be loved.

“This is when I realised that there must be hundreds, if not thousands of animals just like Ned, facing death in our pound and shelter system every day, who the public doesn’t know about. I knew from that moment that I had to help more animals like him.”

Saskia and a small group of dedicated animal lovers joined forces, and in 2011, FFAR was born in her living room. Over the past eight years, FFAR has grown from this small group to over 900 active volunteers. The charity has since saved the lives of over 6,500 animals, from dogs, to cats, to horses and guinea pigs.
“Rescue animals often find themselves in pounds or shelters because their owners are sick or have passed away, have moved and been left behind, or a relationship has ended. The fact is, there is a home for every rescue pet – they don’t need to die in their tens of thousands,” Saskia said.

“We don’t operate a shelter. We place our rescue animals in the loving homes of our volunteers, where they receive medical and behavioural rehabilitation if required, and importantly, the time to heal. We often see cases of horrendous abuse and neglect.”

While FFAR has saved thousands of lives, there is still more to be done. The organisation is currently raising much-needed funds to turn a 100-acre farm in the Yarra Valley, Victoria into an animal rehabilitation sanctuary that can house up to 10 dogs and 20 cats/kittens at any one time, as well as farm animals in need.
“Not a day goes by that FFAR doesn’t receive urgent requests to help animals on death-row. Often, we only have a few short hours to save an animal’s life. If we can build this sanctuary,

We’d have emergency accommodation for the most vulnerable, at-need animals, meaning we could save many more lives,” Saskia said.

“We have so far raised $91,000 and need another $89,000 to make this dream come true.”

Ned’s heart-warming story can be seen in this video ...



You can help FFAR build its animal sanctuary by donating to its Chuffed Campaign www.chuffed.org/project/help-build-to-save

MEDIA RELEASE, 12th February 2019
The bone broth trend for dogs and their pawrents is everywhere but could it be more than just the latest healthy pet food fad?

Late last year Sydney business FurFresh approached us to trial their Grass-fed Beef Bone Broth concentrate with our dogs and report on the outcome.


The FurFresh option is a 100% natural grass-fed liquid beef bone broth for dogs and cats, made from 100% human-grade Australian and New Zealand grass-fed beef leg bones which have been slow-cooked at low temperatures for up to 50 hours. 

Yes, of course you could make your own and we have (tried) last winter ... However making broth from leftover carcasses and bones is a time-consuming and very smelly process and we certainly did not give this 50 hours of slow cooking in the pan! Using a slow gentle process is the only way to extract the most nutrient-dense marrow whilst
 maintaining the highest ingredient integrity

The prime candidate for any diet supplementation in our household is always our senior Belgian Shepherd. 
At the ‘ripe old age’ of twelve, Conner certainly appreciates nutritional boosts to his immune system plus it clearly smelled delicious to him!

More importantly we're trying to slow down the onset of canine arthritis and bone broth is deemed one of the best sources of collagen and gelatine. Gelatine acts like a soft cushion between bones helping them glide without friction. Gelatin also helps maintain strong bones and support healthy bone mineral density. 

What is in the FurFresh Grass-Fed Beef Bone Broth?


FurFresh only uses human-grade grass-fed beef leg bones and evaporated sea salt and that’s it! 
No hormones or antibiotics and this product is also gluten and dairy-free.

Meat carcasses are packed to the brim with glucosamine and nutrient dense collagen so when you gently cook beef (or chicken, lamb or pork) bones for a long time these nutrients bleed into the broth. 
When you feed this bone broth to your dog or cat, they absorb those nutrients to support their own joints and cartilage which we felt would be great for our dog with mild arthritis.

The gelatin collagen protein protects and soothes the lining of the digestive tract which may help dogs with food allergies and sensitivities.

Containing chondroitin sulfate and hyaluronic acid and packed full of amino acids, bone broth acts like a cushion to reduce inflammation in the gut as well as intestinal permeability. Leaky gut syndrome and other gut sensitivities are common in dogs and beef bone broth can help them to restore the strength of the lining in their gut.

Combined with the 19 amino acids in this concentrated broth, FurFresh tells us it may assist your dog (or cat) with the following:

  • Better joint, bone, gut health and digestion 
  • Reduction in joint pain and inflammation 
  • Healthier looking coat and soothed skin 
  • Improved muscle and immune system 

How to Use the FurFresh Beef Bone Broth
  
All the hard work has been done so you only need to add water to this liquid concentrate and mix well. Using warm water makes it easier to avoid lumps!

For dogs under 15kg and cats, mix a teaspoon with 250ml of water and for dogs over 15kg, you would mix 2 teaspoons with 500ml of warm water.

You can use it to rehydrate dried food or moisten your dog’s kibble or simply serve it on its own as a nutritious bone broth drink
If you have a fussy eater, using it as a topping should prove irresistible! A dog who is ill or a senior dog who has gone off its food will still lap at broth. 

You can serve it warm during winter or cool during our hot summer months. 

FurFresh Grass-Fed Bone Broth comes in a 350g screwtop jar that will make 60 serves so that’s two whole months of goodness for a small dog! Just ensure that you keep your jar in the fridge after opening but it can last 12 months from opening.

Our Verdict

With the hottest summer we recall experiencing in Sydney, 
warm broth was honestly not at the top of our list but then we had the ‘light bulb’ moment! 

We were finding it hard to get all our dogs to drink the recommended 70ml per kg of bodyweight (over 2L per day for each of them) so we made a few batches of icy treats using the FurFresh Beef Bone Broth.
You could just keep your broth cold in the fridge or freeze it in ice cube trays or a muffin pan. Once frozen, we transferred ours to ziplock bags for easy storage to be served as an icy treat on super hot days! Luckily, we have tiles because these treats never stay long in the bowls ....

Whether you choose to serve it warm or cold, you can save yourself a lot of time and hassles by purchasing the FurFresh ready-made bone broth and with all the ingredients sourced from Australia and New Zealand, you’re supporting our 'local' economy too.

The main reason we would keep adding this broth to our senior dog’s diet would be to boost his immune system and also assist with joint pain in his hind legs

Please Note: depending on your dog’s medical condition, a dog supplement may not be enough and we recommend to always speak with your vet first to check suitability, especially if your dog is already on a course of injections or other medication.

Price & Where to Buy

RRP: $29.95 (350g, 60 serves) at www.furfresh.com.au 




Disclaimer: a 350g jar of Beef Bone Broth Concentrate was provided to us by FurFresh in order to test the product and complete this review.
Heart disease is a common problem in dogs and cats of all ages, however the prevalence is greatest in the geriatric population

Congenital heart disease refers to problems with the heart that are present from birth. On the contrary, acquired heart disease develops anytime during adulthood.

Degenerative mitral valve disease is the most common cardiac disease in dogs (detected in approximately 30% of dogs aged 13 years and older) whereas hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is the most common cardiac disease in cats (prevalence ranging from 15% to 30% of healthy cats).

Are certain breeds more likely to develop heart problems?

Yes, absolutely. Certain heart problems occur with greater frequency in particular breeds, suggesting genetic factors play an important role. Below are some important examples of breed predispositions:


#1. Small breed dogs, including Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and Miniature Poodles.

o Degenerative mitral valve disease (MVD) 
o Read Molly's case study below for 
more information...


#2. Large to giant breed dogs, including Dobermans, Great Danes and Irish Wolfhounds.

o Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM)

#3. Ragdoll and Maine Coon cats

o Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM)

What are the Signs to watch out for? 

The clinical signs associated with heart disease are diverse and varied. On one end of the spectrum, your pet may be completely asymptomatic (often in this scenario the only clue that a problem exists is following detection of a heart murmur by your veterinarian). 

It is worth mentioning that even if an animal has no obvious clinical signs, a significant underlying heart problem may still exist

With more advanced heart disease, clinical signs become apparent, some of which are listed below:
  • Exercise intolerance 
  • Lethargy, weakness 
  • Reduced appetite 
  • Coughing 
  • Increased breathing rate and/or effort 
  • Incoordination, stumbling
  • Collapse, fainting 

Although the above signs may suggest the presence of an underlying heart problem, many other non-cardiac conditions can cause similar clinical signs. If you are concerned, please contact your veterinarian for further advice. 

How do you diagnose heart problems in dogs? 


In many circumstances more than one test is necessary to achieve a complete diagnosis
The most commonly performed tests include: 

1) Cardiac auscultation 

This involves listening to the heart with the aid of a stethoscope. Heart murmurs are the most commonly detected abnormality. A murmur is an abnormal heart sound caused by turbulence of blood within the heart (the most common reason for blood turbulence is a ‘leaky’ heart valve). A diagnosis is not possible with auscultation alone however it often provides the first clue that an underlying heart problem exists. 


2) Thoracic radiographs

This refers to an X-ray of the chest. Chest X-rays allow us to look at both the heart and lungs. A common reason for performing X-rays is when your veterinarian is concerned about fluid build-up in the lungs (X-rays allows us to visualise that fluid in many cases).

3) Electrocardiogram

Also known as an ECG, this test involves placement of clips and leads onto the skin, allowing us to assess the rate and rhythm of your pet’s heart. This is a simple procedure used to diagnose arrhythmias, i.e. heart rhythm disturbances.

4) Holter Monitor 

This is essentially an extended ECG used to diagnose intermittent arrhythmias that may not be present during a short in-house ECG recording. Your pet is sent home wearing a harness which contains a device (holter monitor) that continuously records the heart rate and rhythm. The duration of recording is most commonly 24 hours however some holter monitors can record for a longer period if required. 

5) Echocardiography 

This refers to an ultrasound of the heart and is the most important test when evaluating dogs and cats with heart disease. In comparison to other tests available, echocardiography is the only one that can achieve a specific diagnosis in most cases. It enables us to look inside the heart and visualise all chambers and valves. 

Echocardiography is a difficult skill to learn and requires advanced training. For this reason, only veterinarians with proper training should routinely be performing echocardiography. 

What Treatments are available? 

"Doc, please tell me straight: is it serious?"
#1. No treatment required 

Not all dogs and cats with heart disease require treatment. In some cases the heart problem is mild enough that it is not expected to cause clinical signs or alter life expectancy.

#2. Medical therapy

This involves administering one or more medications to control clinical signs and improve quality of life. There are many different medications prescribed to the veterinary cardiac patient, however one of the most commonly used is frusemide


This is a diuretic agent that causes the kidneys to produce more urine, which in turn helps to remove any excess fluid from the lungs. Most often, cardiac disease in dogs and cats is treated medically.

#3. Surgery

Surgery is sometimes an option depending on the specific condition present. There are a few congenital conditions that can be repaired with the aid of minimally invasive keyhole techniques.

Are there any other recommendations for dogs with heart disease?

A tailored management plan for your pet will be formulated by your veterinarian, however generally speaking it is best to avoid
  • High intensity, strenuous exercise 
  • Activity during hot weather 
  • Foods and treats with high salt content 

Molly's story: Degenerative Mitral Valve Disease (MVD) 


Molly, a 6-year old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, was referred for investigation of a recently detected heart murmur. 

Other than an occasional dry cough, the owner had not noticed any issues that may have suggested an underlying heart problem. On physical exam, a moderate intensity heart murmur was noted. The remainder of the exam was normal.

Echocardiography was recommended to determine the cause of the murmur. Molly was diagnosed with a condition called degenerative mitral valve disease (MVD). MVD is the most common heart disease to affect dogs. It is an adult onset disease most often developing in middle-aged to older dogs. 

The cause is unknown however genetic factors are likely important. Unfortunately, the prevalence of MVD is particularly high in Cavalier King Charles SpanielsThis breed can also sometimes develop MVD at a younger age compared to other breeds.

In order to understand MVD, some basic background knowledge about the heart is necessary: 


The heart is the organ responsible for pumping blood to and from all tissues of the body. The heart is divided into right and left sides

The job of the right side is to pump oxygen-deficient blood returning from the body into the lungs (via the pulmonary artery) where fresh oxygen is collected and carbon dioxide is removed. The oxygen-rich blood returning from the lungs enters the left side of the heart where it is pumped to the tissues and organs of the body (via the aorta).

Each side of the heart has two chambers, an upper atrium and a lower ventricle. Between the atrium and ventricle on each side lies a valve – the tricuspid on the right and the mitral on the left – that regulates blood flow between the chambers. 


As the heart pumps, these valves act as one-way gates, allowing blood to flow from the atrium to the ventricle but also preventing blood from flowing back into the atrium. From the ventricles, blood is pumped into the pulmonary artery (on the right) or the aorta (on the left) through a second series of one-way valves (the pulmonic valve and aortic valve, respectively).

MVD results in degeneration of the mitral valve, preventing full closure of the valve and disrupting the one-way gate mechanism. As a result, blood moves across the mitral valve in the wrong direction. The consequence of this ‘leaky’ valve depends on the volume of blood moving across the valve.

In mild cases, there may be no measura
ble adverse effect on the heart or the patient (i.e. in this situation the dog would be asymptomatic). In more severe cases, the heart responds by physically growing and enlarging. In select patients, heart enlargement is so severe that fluid begins to ‘back up’ in the lungs – this is referred to as congestive heart failure and causes an increase in your pet’s breathing rate and effort. 

Once heart enlargement develops, it is important your dog is commenced on a lifelong medication called pimobendan (even if your pet is not showing any clinical signs of heart disease). A relatively recent study showed pimobendan delays the onset of congestive heart failure by approximately 15 months. 

The good news is that Molly’s heart was not enlarged, indicating her disease was quite mild. No treatment was recommended, however her owner was strongly advised to return for a repeat echocardiogram in 6-12 months time to assess for any possible progression.

What is the main ‘take home’ message for a dog with MVD?

If your veterinarian detects a heart murmur in your dog, there is a reasonable chance it will be due to MVD (particularly if he or she is an adult small to medium breed dog). The best way to obtain an accurate diagnosis is with the aid of echocardiography, ideally performed by a veterinary specialist (e.g. veterinary cardiologist). 


Even if your pet is asymptomatic you should still strongly consider having an echocardiogram performed given the benefits of early pimobendan administration (as described above).

What is the prognosis for dogs with MVD? 


The prognosis for dogs with MVD is highly variable and depends on the severity of the underlying changes to the heart. The most common clinical consequence of MVD is the development of congestive heart failure.

#1. Mild MVD (no enlargement of the heart) 


It can take 2-5 years to develop congestive heart failure from this stage of disease. However, some dogs will never develop congestive heart failure within their lifetime (and hence have a normal life expectancy from a cardiac perspective).

#2. More advanced MVD (enlargement is evident)

Congestive heart failure may develop in a shorter period of time. If a dog develops congestive heart failure (again I stress not all dogs will), the average survival time is 9-12 months. It is worth mentioning that despite the presence of congestive heart failure, most dogs have a good quality of life provided they are receiving optimal treatment.

written by Specialist Veterinary Cardiologist Dr Geoff Nicolson, February 2019 for Australian Dog Lover (all rights reserved)

About the writer
Geoff grew up in New Zealand before making the move across the ditch to complete his veterinary training. It was during vet school that he developed a strong interest in cardiology. After graduating with honours from the University of Queensland, he completed a 12 month rotating internship at the University of Queensland Veterinary Teaching Hospital

In 2013, Geoff commenced his cardiology training at the University of Sydney Veterinary Teaching Hospital. In 2017 he successfully passed the examination to obtain Diplomate status in the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine, in the subspecialty of Cardiology. After gaining his specialist qualification, Geoff moved to Melbourne where he worked as a mobile cardiologist for 12 months. 

Last year he returned to South East Queensland to establish Veterinary Cardiac Services, a mobile service operating across Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast. Geoff also regularly takes his mobile service to Hobart, Canberra, Townsville and even Singapore.

In his spare time Geoff enjoys running and keeping fit, mainly to balance his love of restaurants, food and wine. Geoff and his partner are parents to Charlie, an Australian Silky Terrier with a lot of attitude!

For more information, please visit www.vcsaustralia.com.au or email geoff@vcsaustralia.com.au
Greencross Vets Introduces New Operating Model ...

Greencross Vets are excited to announce a number of updates to the service offering for 2019, allowing for increased flexibility and convenience for both animals and their owners to include Telemedicine, Mobile Vet Services, Team Based Consulting and Extended Hours. These new introductions form part of the commitment that Greencross holds, to ensure clients can access care for their pets where, when and how they want to. 

Using innovative technology, Telemedicine offers the customer ease and ensures that the pets health is the number one priority. Chief Veterinary Officer, Rachel Chay comments “This will provide an expanded level of care to our patients particularly those with chronic or ongoing medical conditions. It also gives peace of mind to our clients who wish to ensure their pet has the best level of care but find it challenging to visit us regularly in clinic.”

This first to market service is available to existing Greencross customers and allows for a less stressful experience for the animal rather than travelling to the vet; perfect for those in remote locations the consultations are conducted by a qualified Greencross Vet. 

Complementing the Telemedicine offering the Mobile vet service allows animals to be treated in a familiar environment with no travel involved. “Along with the other services being added this provides a gold standard veterinary care service in the convenience of your own home. For many pets, particularly cats, a simple trip to the vet is a very stressful event. 

A cat patient at Greencross Vets Morwell

In some cases, with this level of stress clients may delay or not seek veterinary assistance for fear of causing this stress to their beloved pets! Likewise, for some of our valuable clients it is difficult to come into our clinics. So again, it is all about providing convenient veterinary services to our clients and improving the care their pets receive” Chay said.

On the contrary to the at home services Greencross is leveraging individual’s specialities with Team based consulting; this offering is being rolled out to provide a collaborative approach to medicine and health care, whilst leveraging individual’s specialities to care for your pet whilst increasing the standard of care. With increased standards of care, communication and teamwork nurse’s involvement is also bought into practice. Rachel Chay says “Increasing the touchpoints of our entire team of veterinary professionals with the clients, strengthens the communication. It is a very efficient way of working without decreasing the time our clients have to talk through their pet’s health concerns”.

Finally, allowing for added flexibility and convenience extended Vet Hours co-located stores (Petbarn and Greencross vets) will align their hours to trade for the same amount of time, which will allow pet owners accessibility to the full range of services.

About Greencross Vets:

Greencross Vets are a local network of well-equipped veterinary practices across Australia. Although Greencross Vets is part of a national organisation all practices are run and managed by a local team of dedicated pet care professionals who are passionate about pets. For more information visit greencrossvets.com.au

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