Our Vet's Blog
This is a copy of our Veterinary Advisor Graham Hines Blog which hopefully has some useful information
Vaccicheck and Canine Parvovirus (CPV)08-05-2021, 01:36
There has been an increase in the number of cases of this nasty disease in the UK recently it is reported (see below)
Should we believe these scare stories are they just a way to get dog owners in for more boosters co-ordinated by the largest corporate practice owner in the UK?
Should you rush in and get your pets revaccinated or this there a better approach?
I will tell you my approach
This story appeared in the veterinary profession’s weekly free-sheet the Vet Times:
Vets across the UK have been warned to brace themselves for a parvovirus surge after reported cases doubled in the first three months of 2021.
The warning comes after data from pet emergency service Vets Now showed a 129% increase in suspected cases of the potentially fatal disease in the first three months of 2021, compared with the same period last year.
IVC Evidensia – owner of Vets Now – has also released research showing that up to 45% of registered pet owners hadn’t got vital vaccinations and boosters.
It’s thought a potential surge in cases could be coming as a result of the massive boom in lockdown puppies and concerns over still attending surgeries for routine jabs.
Edward Davies, chairman of the UK clinical board at IVC Evidensia said: “There are several reasons why we are really concerned about seeing an increase in cases of CPV and our practices have been taking steps to brace themselves for a potential resurgence in this disease, as well as ensuring they are encouraging their clients to keep up to date with dog vaccinations.
“Due to the lockdown puppy boom and the whole COVID-19 situation, ensuring preventive health care has been correctly followed for all pets has been a real challenge. The potential resurgence of CPV has been quite a worry during this time.”
The warning comes after a week-long battle saved a puppy from death when it contracted parvovirus. Labrador retriever Paisley was only weeks old when she was struck down by the highly contagious virus.
Owner Cathy Ball, a vet nurse at Cheshirepet Vets in Sandbach, had spotted the very earliest signs and Paisley was put on antiviral drugs and a drip, but after three days of nursing and care at Cheshirepet, Paisley became so ill he needed to be referred to Pride Vets.
The team at Pride Vets was led by Tiago Henriques, a resident in internal medicine. He said: “Paisley was very ill when she came in and I was concerned that we might not be able to save her.
“We had to continue with the supportive treatment she had already had, put her on a feeding tube and give her anti-nausea medication to stop her being sick. We monitored her 24 hours a day in our intensive care unit and it was about five days before, happily, we saw real signs that she was going to be okay.”
of puppies vaccinated at 12 or even 16 weeks of age are not demonstrating antibodies to parvo. Some studies shows as much as 10-15% watch the video recording of this if you want to learn more.
So the take home message is that
- There is more parvo around because of the increased puppy population due to lockdown.
- Some of these pups may not have been vaccinated and are vulnerable to CPV
- Not all vaccinated puppies are fully protected against CPV
What should you do to check if your companions are protected?
I suggest ask your vet for a anti-body titre test such as Vaccicheck to see if they are immune. Its should cost around £50-70 and results should be rapidly available. You can now get “lateral flow” type tests which take only 10 minutes and are shown to be very accurate https://biotechkit.uk over 95% or vaccicheck which give a quantitative result and takes 30 minutes.
If your pet has no antibodies then ask for a vaccine - if he has it will put your mind at rest. Just one jab is enough and you could then repeat the antibody test 3 weeks later to check it has worked if you wish.
Your vet will probably just recommend you give a booster jab this is not my approach there is no point in jabbing him full of vaccine if he does not need it
My recommendation fr your new puppy is
Have a puppy vaccination DHP at 12 weeks of age and then anti-body test at 15 weeks (approx) and if need be revaccinate but only if needed and ideally only for just those disease needed e.g. CPV
See my website for more details
[Leptospirosis is more complicated see my website for more information but you do not have to give this but I do recommend a vaccine for parvo.]
Once you have demonstrated antibodies in your dog to one of these diseases you can be confident she is immune and the body has formed cell medicated memory of that disease
My next Vaccicheck Clinics
I have arranged with the Dogs Diner in Moreton on the Wirral to do more clinics from now on as there has been a pent up demand with lock down
We are still doing a full 3 disease antibody test for Distemper, Parvovirus and Adenovirus for only £30 currently
The next date is 20th May 2021 from 10am ring the Diner for details...
Then we have a small clinic Saturday 29th May at the same venue.
If you have 3 or more dogs and are reasonable close to me in Deeside/Chester or in the Caernarfon areas we could arrange a home visit this will cost more but only £45.00 per dog.
I am hoping to arrange a venue in North Wales as well in the next few weeks. Watch this space
We can also test cats for Panleucopenia; FIV and Leukaemia and dogs and cats for Giardia email for details again have a look on my website naturalpetcare.vet
The best time to anti-body test is 3-4 weeks after puppy vaccinations to determine if he is immune or is one of the possibly 10% who have high levels of maternal antibodies or for some other reason does not respond. But the test is valid and useful at any age.
There are more cases of parvo around at the moment but you can check if your pet is safe by getting an anti-body test ask your vet or come to us.
Vaccicheck Clinic Starting again 5th May10-04-2021, 07:36
Well as lockdown eases we feel we can start Vaccicheck Clinics at the Dogs Diner again in May
Subject to the guidelines as much as we can - Please wear a facemask, wait outside until we call you in, extra hygiene between clients etc and bear with us a little slower than normal
First session 10am Wednesday 5th May 10am
Ring the Diner on
The Dog's Diner Ltd
Tarran Way North, Moreton
Wirral CH46 4UB
0151 678 2588
As from that date I can also see client for longer consultations for advice or treatment there but book those with me on
Vaccination, Parasite treatment advice and titre testing
Just general Holistic Natural Veterinary Care
No surgery, X-rays I run a referral practice but you can self refer
Evidence for the value and benefits of raw feeding increases...24-01-2021, 03:39
I would like to share with you some recent research which I was privileged to hear about on webinars and reading over the past month or so.
Should dogs and cats be fed a high carbohydrate diet?
1. Comparing Wolves and Dogs natural starch consumption
Dogs genomes are different to wolves in a number of aspects including the fact they have genes which allow them to produce amylase (the enzymes which the gut uses to digest starch. Does this mean they can therefore be fed high levels of carbs?
Research has shown that wolves diet consists of approximately 50:50 fat and protein and only 1% starch
Domestic dogs of a wide variety of sizes and breeds if allowed to self select foods choose to eat 4-7% starch.
(Feral) Cats naturally eat about 2% starch and natural would choose to avoid more starch if given a free choice.
Wild animals will by the laws of natural selection will eat the foods that give them the best chance of survival.
So why do Commercial cat foods contain as much as 40% starch can we find research to back this up and disagree with the above assumptions. Yes there is a study Hall et al 2018 which found cats would choose t eat more starch than that...
Why do the commercial food guys add carbohydrate?
1. Its a much cheaper source of calories
2. You need to use starch to bind the kibble and form the dry foods
We have shown dogs and cats would not chose to eat very much starch but is it harmful?
There is increasing evidence to support observations myself and other holistic vets have been seeing for years that pets do much better on a raw based, minimal starch diet or even a cooked home prepared diet if they are balanced of course.
1. a small study compared the number of Toxocara canis egg in dogs fed on raw and processed diet found drastically less worm eggs shed in raw fed dogs:
It would seem the immune system of dogs that are naturally fed are much better able to defend themselves against this intestinal worm.
A small study on the gene expression of white blood cells - the immune system cells macrophages and found differences in transcriptome expression. Basically within 3 weeks of changing between raw and processed diet there was an increase in inflammatory cell expression. Kibble causes chronic inflammation.
Studies in Finland I think I have written about before show that raw foods are dramatically protective in preventing Canine Atopy Dermatitis CAD in dogs fed a raw diet in the pre-natal period. The lowest levels of CAD in young adults was in the cohort in which the dam was raw fed and pups weaned on to raw food with intermediate level were pups were raw fed soon post weaning.
In other words an ultra processed carbohydrate based diets are a major risk factor in CAD
(Atopy is inflammation of the skin caused by allergy and extremely common in practice.~)
Newer studies I think are getting us a step closer - it's the microbiome. There are dramatic differences in the bacterial populations in the gut and stool of raw fed low starch diets. There are increases in the variety of bacteria found in raw fed animals.
There are dramatic changes in the numbers and types of bacteria in not only the faeces but also the skin microbiome. We do not know what each type of bacteria does as yet and there is a lot more to learn.
I will tell you more as I learn it.
Anti raw campaigners will use figures such as an increase in E. Coli spp. & Clostridium spp to berate raw and cite it as evidence raw is dangerous. But there are many sub-species or strains of these bacteria and increasing evidence in fact increased levels of clostridiceae is associated with faecal health and low faecal volume and a healthy microbiome.
The other measure is of the metabolome - chemicals in the body - Kibble fed dogs have higher levels of methionine and cystathionine chemicals associated with inflammation and bile acids are higher which has in man been associated with colon cancer.
Another small study measured transcriptome in the skin of a small number of Staffies comparing the raw fed to the kibble fed and there are some evidence of an improved immunity and reduced oxidative stress
Most of these studies are very small numbers of animals and of course will be criticised by Big Kibble - Mars, Pedigree , Nestle and other pet food manufactures.
The micro biome research is very new and I am sure we will learn more over the next few years to support our observations in practice.
If you want to read more then may I suggest reading my Irish Colleague
We are trying to sponsor our own research into the benefits/risks of Natural Feeding to be able to challenge Big Kibble if you can donate anything please do
References - see images and more available on request.
D. Knueven DVM (personal communication )
Coconut Oil - Is it good for your Dog?29-11-2020, 09:37
Coconut oil is a fashionable addition to the diets of both people and there pets.
Is it good for your dog? NO stick to an species appropriate diet
Not according to these researcher. Unless your pets microbiome is used to these forms of oil it can cause more problems than it helps.
Have a listen to this youtube interview:
You can really upset the delicate balance of your pets gut flora and cause inflammatory chemical to leak out of the gut with coconut oil and many other novel foods which pets are not used to or evolved to consume. Read more about the microbiome on my website.
The microbiome is the population of micro-organisms which live along side us in or gut and elsewhere and I think is the reason a raw diet helps so many of my patients.
Last Vaccicheck Clinic of the year 12/12/2029-11-2020, 06:31
Our next vaccicheck clinic has been arranged for Saturday 12th December at the usual place.
The Dog's Diner Ltd
Tarran Way North, Moreton
Wirral CH46 4UB
0151 678 2588
Give them a ring to make an appointment
What is this?
We will take a small blood sample from you dog and measure the antibody levels (titre) to
Distemper, Hepatitis and Parvovirus
If there are as in most dogs adequate levels there is no need to have them vaccinated - result!!
Covid distancing and masks are required and used.
As it so close to Christmas then santa masks would be good and you can get your companions their last minute gifts while there - Turkey and cranberry minced dinners
Read more about vaccicheck at naturalpetcare.vet/medicine/vaccination/
Fore appointments about other things on other days or after the clinic contact me not the Diner
Raw Feeding Research an Update19-11-2020, 10:27
This weekend I attended a seminar on raw feeding from RAW FEEDING VETERINARY SOCIETY
I would like to share some of the results with you
Raw Feeding and Allergies
Vets who advocate Raw Feeding will confirm that they see a reduction in the severity of skin allergy (atopic dermatitis) and IBS (Inflammatory Bowel Diseases) when they change a dog onto a raw diet.
This has been confirmed in research presented to the conference by a Finish Group led by Anna Hielm-Björkman DVM, PhD in Finland
When a breeding bitch is fed a raw diet and her puppies are fed raw for the first few months of life the incidence of Canine Atopic dermatitis is 3 times 300% less likely to occur. There are other factors such as genetics but diet has a huge affect.
Similar results abut the development of IBD in later life is found
You can have a look at the studies at dogrisk.com/publications
Anna and her team run DOG RISK in Finland and need funds to improve the data and run more studies. If you feel you can donate so we can gain more evidence to fight back against Mars Nestle and the like please make a small donation
Pet flea treatments poisoning rivers across England, scientists find17-11-2020, 10:56
Discovery is ‘extremely concerning’ for water insects, and fish and birds that depend on them
This is a headline in todays Guardian Newspaper
For more about this increasing problem read my website as well
Veterinary Herbal Medicine Week 12 October 202002-10-2020, 10:07
Exciting news! Veterinary herbal medicine week (12th-18th October) is fast approaching! Please join us here every weekday at 7pm!
The Veterinary Herbal Medicine Week 2020 is nearly upon us
Every week day at 7pm you can join us for a facebook talk to learn more about how herbs can help you or your companions.
October Halloween Vaccicheck Clinic30-09-2020, 06:10
We have arranged our next clinic to be Halloween MORNING from 10am at the Dogs Diner in Moreton Wirral
Give them a ring on 0151 678 2588
Cost £30 per dog
What is Vaccicheck?
We take a small blood sample from you pet and than use this to measure antibodies to Adenovirus, Distemper and Parvovirus in the blood. For this we can tell if he has been vaccinated successfully or had a natural infection to give him antibodies
If the antibody titers are positive then you will not need a vaccine for any of these diseases.
When should it be done.
Ideally a couple of weeks post vaccination as a puppy if it's worked then he's protected but at any time is fine
How long does protection last. Probably for life but we recommend a retest every 3 years if a good level of antibodies are found
Next Vaccicheck Clinic13-09-2020, 05:24
Saturday 19th September 2020
Ring the Diner for an appointment 0151 678 2588
Read more about what Vaccicheck Antibody testing is here