Luna’s Lesson Of The Week

Did you know that rats are extremely prone to respiratory infections? House your pet rat in a large, well-ventilated cage with irritant free bedding. Yearly health checks will ensure your rat lives a happy and healthy life.

Birds And Egg Laying

It is now Spring and we are getting an increasing number of phone calls from clients concerned about their egg laying birds. Pet birds will lay several times throughout the year, but more commonly during Spring.
If in the presence of a mate, female birds (hens) will be more likely to ovulate and produce eggs. It is a common misconception that female birds need a mate to lay eggs. Hen birds will lay eggs in the absence of a mate, however these eggs will not be fertile.
There are many problems that can be associated with egg laying birds and unless an experienced and confident breeder, it is best to avoid egg laying at all costs. Egg laying problems include egg binding, where the egg is ‘stuck’ in the cloaca or abdomen, egg-related peritonitis, where the yolk leaks into the abdomen, resulting in severe infection, and calcium deficiency, causing paralysis and neurological issues.
There are many ways that you can reduce the incidence of egg laying problems, but the least invasive way is through behavioural modification to stop the production of eggs. Behavioural modification aims to change the hen bird’s laying cycle so that they cease laying and can be extremely effective if done correctly.
Medical and surgical treatment options are also available, but you should always consult your avian specialist veterinarian first.
Please feel free to post any questions or comments you may have regarding behavioural management of egg laying.

Guinea Pig Nutrition & Dental Disease

Good teeth are essential to your guinea pig’s health and well-being. Guinea pig’s teeth grow continuously throughout their life and a nutritious diet consisting of a high quality grassy hay, a variety of vegetables and adequate vitamin c will help to ensure your pig does not develop dental disease.
Dental disease is disturbingly common in guinea pigs and can be easily prevented by providing your pig with an unlimited supply of a long-stranded, high-fibre grassy hay and a vitamin c supplement.
Grassy hays including Timothy, Oaten, Barley and Fescue hay are high in fibre, low in protein and low in calcium. Grassy hays are therefore responsible for maintaining a healthy and functioning digestive system and reduces the risk of developing soft stools, urinary tract and bladder issues, gas and bloating. Grassy hays can be purchased from any good produce store, pet store or veterinary clinic.
Vitamin C is essential for guinea pigs’ growth and is responsible for bone development and tooth root formation. Guinea pigs are unable to produce their own vitamin c and it is for this reason, that it must be supplied in their diet. Vitamin C is unstable in water and should therefore be given to guinea pigs in the form of an oral tablet or liquid.
Please feel free to post any questions or comments you may have about this topic. If you have any vet related questions, I am more than happy to refer you onto a veterinary clinic that can help.