chocolate Labrador

How can I protect my dogs from horsefly bites?

Q: I usually take my two Labradors with me when I tend to my horses and have noticed that there seem to be a lot of horseflies around this year, which can give 
a nasty bite. I generally spray myself with insect repellent to keep them away from me, but…

constipated dog

What treatment can I give my constipated dog?

Q: My Labrador seems to get constipated; she gets into position to relieve herself but 
with no success. What can be 
done to relieve constipation? A: Constipation is a relatively common digestive disorder 
and most dogs can suffer from a bout 
at some point during their lives. Feeding a diet…

heatstroke in dogs

How to treat heatstroke in dogs

Dogs do not sweat like humans; they don’t have sweat glands, except for a few on the foot pads and on their noses. When they become warm dogs pant, exhaling overheated air, breathing in fresh, cool air and lowering their core body temperature. When a dog is confined to a…

Jack Russell hop

Why does my Jack Russell hop, skip and jump?

There are two likely possibilities and I am afraid each might require a surgical intervention, which is not what you will want to hear. Luxating patella The patella, or kneecap, sits in the knuckle-like trochlear groove at the front of the thigh bone or femur. It has an important job.…

springer spaniel puppy

Should I have my springer spaniel puppy castrated?

Q: I have a nine-month-old male springer spaniel puppy that has recently started trying to mount bitches even though they are not in season. I have been 
told it might be best to have him castrated. What would you advise? A: Before deciding on puppy castration, it is important to…

silver Labrador

Would a silver Labrador be right for you?

What exactly is the right colour? The Kennel Club’s breed standard states that “any shade of gold or cream” is acceptable for golden retrievers, while the American KC requires “rich, lustrous gold of various shades”. Colour is a contentious issue in many breeds. However, when it comes to controversial coat…

Roan springer spaniel

Spaying an older dog. Should you?

Q: I took my eight-and-a-half-year-old bitch to the vet because she was being a bit slow with her food. It transpired that she was having a phantom pregnancy. The vet advised that 
I have her neutered, but I am wary of this because of her age. What do you think?…

Dog training with a whistle

Most dog attacks are by Labradors. Seriously?

I have just been alerted to a story in The Times that the breed of dog blamed for the most dog attack claims in the UK is the Labrador. This doesn’t surprise me at all, despite the fact that almost all the Labradors I have met have been big softies,…

cocker spaniel

Neutering young dogs can be damaging

Veterinary surgeons are not renowned for always agreeing with each other, so I was pleased to hear from gundog enthusiast and vet Roger Bannock in response to my recent article on neutering dogs. He wrote: “I agree with most of the points. Nowadays all graduates are brainwashed into thinking early…

Gundogs with beater

Do dogs have to wear collars?

Q: I pick-up with a very experienced dog person who has a team of dogs under immaculate control. None of them wear a collar. I thought dogs were obliged to by law. I asked him about it and he said that a collar could injure his dogs and he wasn’t…