You may remember Cuba who came to Labrador Rescue in 2015 as a 12 week old puppy. His family love him dearly but unfortunately one of the young children accidentally sat on him and damaged his spine. After putting in a lot of work rehabilitating him and spending thousands in vet work, his family had to make the decision to pass him to Lab Rescue to finish his rehab. Cuba wasn't able to move his back legs at all but the vets believe his nerves are growing back. He is receiving regular physio to ensure he can maintain his current level of movement. His foster carer takes him to work each day and he is quite the celebrity. He will soon be looking for a permanent home where he will require some special care.
MEET THE EXPERT
Name: Dr Juliet Mills, Senior Veterinary Surgeon and Owner
Practice: Black Rock Animal Hospital, Vic
How did you know you wanted to be a vet?
The cliché response to this question would be ‘because I love animals’ but in my case this is not the only reason I became a vet. I always wanted to be a marine biologist as I wanted to work with whales, I have such a love and respect for these animals. My dad talked me out of this as a profession as work can be difficult to find in this field. I decided then that I wanted to do something medical but didn’t want to have to deal with people so Veterinary Science seemed the most logical solution. After being told I wouldn’t get into Veterinary Science via my career advisor I actually applied for physiotherapy, occupational therapy and medicine but my dad convinced me to place Veterinary Science as my main preference at Perth University and Queensland University and amazingly I got into Perth.
What's your most common pet owner mistake you see?
Keep chocolate out of reach and even more so food that contains cocoa. I have unfortunately seen a labrador pass away after eating a tray of brownies. Other foods are grapes, saltanas and artificial sweetener Xylitol.
Don’t throw sticks, these can land prematurely and the dog lands on top with mouth open causing life threatening injuries to the oesophagus.
Don’t play tug of war with socks – I commonly remove them from Labrador tummies.
What's your best piece of advice for Labrador health?
Labradors are dogs that are prone to having elbow, hips and cruciate (knee) problems. I am sure that all Labrador owners feel like they have been lectured about weight but sadly this is one of the hardest things owner of labs have to deal with. Those puppy dogs eyes you can never so NO to are their worst enemy. It has been proven that keeping their weight down does reduce the severity of arthritis and their ability to cope with arthritis.
9 year old Shelley was surrendered to the pound suffering long-term flea allergy dermatitis. She was virtually hairless; her tail was covered with bloodied scabs; she was extremely itchy and her front teeth were completely worn away from the constant chewing on itchy skin.
Steroids, flea treatment and medicated shampoo started her on her recovery journey. A soothing cream (aloe vera, calendula, coconut oil) was rubbed into her skin and her food was supplemented with omega oils, coconut oil and probiotics.
Two months later, the beautiful Shelley is a happy and healthy girl living an active life in Melbourne.
Bone broth is a long forgotten superfood that’s inexpensive, nutrient packed and easy to make.
Not only does bone broth contain great amounts of glucosamine, it’s also packed with other joint protecting compounds like chondroitin and hyaluronic acid. It all helps with production of collagen in joints, tendons and ligaments. Bone broth would be excellent supplement for undernourished dogs, those with GI troubles, senior dogs, or when your pet is a finicky eater.
It can be used as a base for a meal, or as a supplement for regular diet.
To make a bone broth you would need:
Variety of bones (joint bones with cartilage are best)
Apple Cider Vinegar to help draw the minerals out of the bones more thoroughly
Cover bones with water, add 2-4 tablespoons of vinegar, cover and simmer for a long time - 24hrs is ideal. Slow cookers are best to use.
Once chilled, strain the bones, skim the fat from the top and you are ready to portion the broth - it can be frozen in small containers.
FANCY A PHOTO SHOOT FOR YOUR POOCH? (campaign ended)
The volunteers currently putting together the already stunning 2017 Labrador Rescue Calendar have found a blank page. Oh no!
We are offering our supporters the opportunity to help us raise funds and a chance to showcase their adopted Labrador as a star in our 2017 calendar.
There is only one blank page so the final spot will be decided by silent auction. The winning bidder will receive a photo shoot with a professional photographer and a page in the calendar.
Open to all states. To participate, send your bid to email@example.com. Bidding will close at 5pm on Tuesday 31 May 2016. The successful bidder will be announced on Thursday June 2 2016.
You and your Labrador must be available during June for the photo shoot to ensure we have plenty of time to crank up the printing presses and distribute the calendars to everyone.
Don't delay, hit reply and bid today for the chance to showcase your own special adopted Labby and become a Labrador Rescue superstar.
We would also be extra specially delighted to hear from you if you have a business that would like to contribute to sponsorship for a month of the calendar.
All funds raised are for Labrador Rescue to ensure we continue to give as many Labradors as we can the love and care they deserve.