Everything you need to know about gundog health in one place, including advice from gundog experts about ailments and illnesses, teeth, nutrition, x-rays and much more, plus your questions answered by vets.

old black Labrador

Why you should never give dogs ibuprofen

Stiff legs in the morning Q: I notice that our Labrador, as he gets older, is starting to have difficulty getting up on his legs first thing in the morning. This was especially noticeable after he had been for a long walk the previous day and we are now limiting…

spaniel flushing a bird in cover

What can I do about the scratches on my spaniel’s face?

Spaniel scratches – what’s the answer? Q: Now I am retired I have been able to work my spaniels more frequently this season. One has so many cuts around her eyes and over her muzzle from having to retrieve birds from deep cover that it doesn’t take much to make…

spaniel with hen pheasant

Do spaniels smell more than Labradors?

Q: I would like a springer or working cocker spaniel to train as a gundog, but my father is not keen. My grandparents had a show-strain cocker who was a lovely dog but she really smelled, no matter what my grandparents did to try to stop it. Should I get…

gundog puppies

How to give your gundog puppy the best start in life

Over the coming months, many gundog bitches will cast off the lissom figures they acquired during the shooting season. They will take on a more matronly demeanour of pregnancy as they are given the important job of producing a litter of spring or summer puppies. But how prepared are first-time…

Roan springer spaniel

Can you prevent arthritis in dogs?

Q: Is there anything that can be done to delay or prevent the onset of arthritis in older dogs? Controlling your dog’s weight 
by feeding a healthy diet and keeping your dog fit by providing regular exercise are probably the most significant things you can do to prevent or delay…

vaccinating gundogs

Should you vaccinate your dog every year? Is it necessary?

Vaccinating gundogs If you read any 
of the old dog books, you will be reminded that distemper was once the most feared of canine illnesses. A highly contagious virus, it was commonly called hard pad because one of the most obvious symptoms was hardening of the pads. With 
no known…

dogs in snow

Keeping your dog safe in the snow

Dogs in snow Arguably the biggest problem with working a dog in snow is ice balling in the dog’s pads and, if it is a spaniel, its feathers. Ice balling depends on the type of snow and the air temperature, but it can be a real distraction to working dogs,…

not the best water for dogs

Be careful of the water your dog drinks

Dogs need lots of water. There are records of dogs living for weeks without food, but if they are deprived of water their survival is limited to days. Quite how much an individual dog needs to drink every day depends on a number of factors, ranging from diet to the…

chocolate

Why you should never feed your dogs chocolate

I have always been told that chocolate is poisonous to dogs. Is this really true because I have 
a friend who often uses choc drops to reward his dog and has never found them to be a problem? Toxic chocolate Chocolate 
is definitely poisonous to dogs and, in sufficient quantity,…

Gundog anxiety

What can I do to protect my dog against Alabama rot?

Q: Is it true that Alabama 
rot is most prevalent in the autumn and winter? If that is the case, is there anything I can do 
to protect my dog? A: We refer to this disease as CRGV (idiopathic cutaneous and renal glomerular vasculopathy). It was first recognised in the…

black Labrador

Why does my dog drag its bottom?

Q: My dog drags 
its rear end along the ground frequently. I am told this is a sign that he needs his anal glands emptied by a vet. Why is this 
a recurring problem for him when other dogs don’t seem 
to suffer to the same extent?   View this…

dog ear mites checking by vet

Could my dog catch ear mites from another dog?

Q: My next-door neighbour’s 
dog has mites, which has led 
to an ear infection. We walk the dogs together each day and I was wondering if mine would be at risk? What are dog ear mites and are they catching? What dog owners need to know about ear mites Ear…