Everything you Need to Know About Toilet Training your Puppy

Toilet training your puppy is one of the first things you’ll need to do as a new dog owner. There’s a lot of training advice out there so it can be hard to know where to start. However, the most important thing is to establish a routine as quickly as possible and the rest will soon follow. That being said, every puppy is unique. Not only will they need to go to the toilet at different times and different amounts throughout the day, but they will also learn at different paces too. However, in most cases it will take at least 4 – 6 months until your puppy is fully toilet trained. Thankfully, we’ve put together our top puppy toilet training tips and advice to help you throughout this process, as well as a free puppy toilet training schedule that will help you see what an average day of training might look like. Our Top Puppy Toilet Training Tips Like we said, every puppy will learn at a different pace and have slightly different needs. However, there are some basic principles that everyone should follow when toilet training their pup. Here’s what you should do: Establish a routine as quickly as possible. Like all puppy training, consistency is key and taking your puppy to the toilet at the same time every day will help them to learn when to goTake your puppy to the toilet first thing in the morning and after eating/ drinkingTake them to the toilet at least every 2 – 3 hoursAssign a toilet area so that they learn where to goPick up on your puppy’s cues for when they need to go to the toiletIf they go to the toilet correctly,

Caring for your Older Pets

As pet owners, our furry friends hold a special place in our hearts. As they age, it becomes our responsibility to ensure their comfort, health, and happiness. Caring for older pets comes with its unique set of challenges and considerations. At Kensington Vet Care, we have a wealth of experience dealing with pets of all ages, so we understand the distinct needs of old pets, and how you can provide them with the best care possible. Understanding the Aging Process Just like humans, your four-legged friends go through various changes as they age. Some of the common signs of ageing in pets include greying fur, reduced energy levels, decreased mobility, and changes in behaviour. While these signs are a natural part of the ageing process, it's essential to pay close attention to them to address any potential health issues promptly. Arthritis Management Arthritis is a prevalent issue in older pets, affecting their joints and causing discomfort. To help your ageing pet manage arthritis, you can consider the following: Consult Your Vet: Regular health checks with your vet can help identify arthritis early on. They can recommend appropriate treatments, including pain management medications or supplements.Provide a Comfortable Bed: Invest in a soft and supportive bed for your pet. Memory foam or orthopaedic beds for example can relieve joint pain and provide a more comfortable rest.Regular, Gentle Exercise: Another way to manage arthritis is to encourage light, low-impact exercises e.g., short walks or swimming. These activities can help maintain muscle strength and joint mobility.Weight Management: Keeping your older pet at a healthy weight is crucial. Excess weight can exacerbate arthritis symptoms. For a suitable plan you can ask us for advice or book a consultation. Nutrition for Older

Are Pet Care Plans Worth It?

As pet owners, we all know that caring for your furry friends can be expensive as costs mount up for consultations, vaccinations and flea and worming treatments. As a solution to these costs, many vets offer pet care plans, which is a scheme that offers to save you money with vet care. But are pet plans worth it, and will they actually help you with saving money?  Keep on reading to find out if subscribing to a pet plan is the best route to take for your pet’s veterinary care, and why at Kensington Vet Care we don’t offer these types of plans to our patients. What is a Pet Care Plan?  Pet plans are a subscription service that covers routine healthcare for your pet. By paying in monthly instalments your pet gets their annual vaccines, flea, tick, and worm treatment, routine check-ups and discounts on medication and surgical procedures. It is important to note that pet plans and what they cover, differ between vet practices, so if you’re currently subscribed to one, it may not cover all the things mentioned.  The main selling point of these plans is the ease of having all the necessary treatments and check-ups all rolled into one payment that comes at a discount price compared to paying for everything your pet needs separately. But it is really worth it? Do Kensington Vet Care Offer Pet Plans? No, at our practice we do not offer monthly pet care plans. They are a few reasons as to why we don’t and why we feel like they aren’t worth it for you and your pet. They Can Be Restrictive When you sign up to a pet care plan, you’re agreeing to a

The Benefits of an Independent Vet

These days, when you take your furry friend to the vet, you usually have the option to visit one of two types of practices that exist: either an independent vet or a corporate vet practice, which usually has many surgeries in a specific area. While both types of practices aim to provide and high standard of treatment and service to you and your pet, there are certain advantages that come with choosing an independent vet over a corporate one. Keep on reading to find out why you should consider choosing an independent vet for your next appointment. The Difference Between Independent Vet Care Practices and Corporate Ones Overall, the main difference between independent and a corporate vet is how they are owned. Independent Vets are owned usually by either an individual vet or a group of vets, usually with a singular practice.  On the other hand, a corporate vet is usually a practice that is owned by a large national company, who own multiple practices across the country. The multiple clinics are seen as a ‘franchise’, and the corporate companies are managed by a large team of businesspeople. This difference in business structure between the two types of vet practices results in a different visiting experience for you and your pet. As an independent vet practice ourselves, there are certain advantages that come with visiting us opposed to a chain. The Benefits of an Independent Vet  As we often know, bigger is not always better and the same can be said when it comes to veterinary practices. While each type of vet care employs qualified vets who always try to strive to provide the best care possible, there are some differences that you may not even

  • A Kitten Running

Your Kitten Vaccination Schedule

Kitten and cat vaccinations are one of the most important things you need to know about as a new cat owner. Without vaccinations, you are putting your cat or kitten at risk of contracting serious infections and diseases, many of which can be fatal. Keeping on top of your kitten’s vaccination schedule is important so that each vaccine can be administered at the strategically correct time. That’s why you need to be aware of what cat vaccinations your pet needs and when from an early stage. Thankfully, we’re here to answer any cat vaccination questions you may have and we’ve even created a handy kitten vaccination calendar so that you can keep track of your kitten vaccination schedule. What Injections do Kittens Need? There are a variety of essential and non-essential kitten vaccinations that you need to know about. First and Second Kitten Vaccinations There are two essential vaccinations that every kitten needs. These vaccinations are to protect against: Feline Herpesvirus (cat flu)Feline Calicivirus (cat flu)Feline Infectious Enteritis Your kitten’s first vaccination can be given once they are aged 8 weeks and onwards, they can then receive their second vaccination from 11 weeks onwards, and at least 3 weeks after their first vaccination. Your cat will also require their first booster vaccination at 14 months, which includes all the components of their first and second kitten vaccinations. Your cat should then return for their second, third, fourth etc booster vaccination on an annual basis. Feline Leukaemia If your cat is an outdoor cat, they will also need a vaccination against Feline Leukaemia (FeLV). It’s an extremely infectious virus that attacks your cat’s immune system, leaving them susceptible to other illnesses and cancer. The FeLV vaccine

  • A Dog Running in a Sunny Field

How to Keep Dogs Cool in Hot Weather

We all love the summer months, including your dog. With any luck, it means longer days spent outdoors with friends and family, enjoying the good weather. However, it’s important to keep an eye on your dog in hot weather to keep them safe from heat exhaustion, or even heat stroke. Dogs can’t regulate their body temperature as well as humans. Dogs can only sweat through their paws and release most of their heat through panting. This makes it really easy for your pup’s temperature to spike if the weather gets too hot. Thankfully there are a few steps you can take to help keep your dog cool in warmer weather and prevent heat stroke. How to Care for your Dog in the Summer Whilst dog heat stroke and exhaustion are genuine risks for most dogs if temperatures rise above 23 degrees, there are some easy things you can do to reduce the risk and help your dog stay nice and cool. Never leave your dog in a car by itself, even if the windows are cracked. The same can be said for caravans, conservatories and out houses. The temperature in these environments can rise rapidly and are extremely dangerous for your pet so don’t risk it. You wouldn’t want to sit in a car on a hot day, so why would your pet? Avoid walking at the hottest point of the day. If it’s a particularly hot day, try to walk your dog outwit the hours of 8am – 8pm if possible. Try to stick to shaded areas as much as possible, take breaks and bring water with you. If your dog starts to look more exerted than usual, take a break and then head

  • A Woman Hugging Her Puppy

Puppy Vaccination Schedule

Puppy vaccinations are one of the most important things you need to know about as a new dog owner. Without puppy vaccinations administered in a correct and timely manner, your pet is at risk of contracting infections, many of which can even be life threatening. It can be a lot to get your head around at first. Thankfully, we’re here to answer all your canine vaccination questions and we’ve even created a handy calendar that you can use to keep on top of your puppy’s vaccination schedule. How many vaccinations does a puppy need There are 2 essential puppy vaccinations that your dog will need to get: First puppy vaccination from the age of 6 weeksSecond puppy vaccination from the age of 10 weeks AND at least 2 weeks after the first dose We would also recommend vaccination against Kennel Cough (a common respiratory infection caused by the Bordetella bronchiseptica bacterium and Parainfluenza virus), this can be done from 10 weeks of age and so is often combined with the second part of the primary vaccination course. If you want to travel abroad with your puppy then he or she will need a rabies vaccination from the age of 12 weeks. Your puppy is also recommended to have a health check with a qualified vet within 48 hours of picking them up from the breeders to check for any congenital problems including heart murmur, hare lip or umbilical hernia. Your puppy should then receive monthly health checks to check on their growth, teething, general health and apply flea and worm treatment. After that, we recommend yearly checks to make sure your pup stays in good health. It is also a legal requirement for your puppy

  • A Girl Holding a Black & Brown Puppy

Everything You Need to Know Before Getting a Dog

Getting a dog can be one of the best decisions you ever make - they’re called man’s best friend for a reason. Dogs can be a huge source of joy, company and comfort in your life. That’s why, with the uncertainty of the past year, it’s no wonder that The Kennel Club reported a 53% increase on their ‘Find a Puppy’ tool in March. However, there’s a lot to consider before you decide to get a dog. They may be (very!) cute, but your decision needs to be based on more than how a dog looks. So, here is everything you need to know before getting a dog. Dogs Are for Life First things first, dogs aren’t just for lockdown or Christmas. The average life span of a dog is 13 years. Before adopting or buying your own dog, you need to make sure you are ready for that commitment. For those next 13 years or so, your lifestyle will be completely altered, and you need to make sure you’re ready for that change.  Different Breeds Have Different Needs Next, you need to do some breed research. Like we said previously, it’s not all about how your dog looks. You need to find a breed that is compatible with your surroundings and lifestyle. For example, cockapoos are very energetic and sociable animals – they need lots of exercise, love and attention and they shouldn’t be left alone for more than a few hours at a time. Comparatively, Greyhounds are much more adaptable and have lower energy levels (especially if they’re retired). On top of different dogs’ needs and temperaments, consider your living arrangement, your surrounding area, your family structure and your work and social life.

  • A Dog at a Travel Check-in Point

How to Get your Animal Health Certificate for Pet Travel After Brexit

Following Brexit, people from the UK are no longer able to use their pet passport to travel with their pet to Europe. If you are planning a trip with your dog, cat or ferret to any EU country or Northern Ireland and you are a UK resident, you will now need to apply for an Animal Health Certificate. If your pet has previously been issued a PETS passport by a non-UK EU country or Switzerland, you will not need an Animal Health Certificate to travel. Your pet’s existing passport will be suitable for entry to the EU and return to the UK. It should also be noted that special rules may apply for entry to Northern Ireland, and you should always check official Government Advice. What is an Animal Health Certificate? An Animal Health Certificate is a single use document that allows entry into the EU, as well as onwards travel within the EU for up to 4 months and return to the UK. It is only for dogs, cats and ferrets. You will need a new certificate each time you travel. The Animal Health Certificate is the replacement for the previously used PETS passports and is the result of negotiations and speculations about pet travel after Brexit. How do I Get an Animal Health Certificate? To get an Animal Health Certificate, your pet must be microchipped, be at least 12 weeks old and have had their rabies vaccine. The earliest date you can travel to Europe or Northern Ireland is 21 days after your pet’s rabies vaccination. Within those 21 days (or afterwards) your pet will need to be examined by an Official Veterinarian who can issue your pet’s health certificate. You need to

  • A pet dog travelling on a train

How to Travel to Europe With Your Pet After Brexit

There is currently a lot of debate and uncertainty surrounding what will happen to pet travel after Brexit. Like many other matters what will happen after the current transition period ends on 31 December 2020 is unknown. Despite this, here at Kensington Veterinary Care, we are committed to keeping you and your pet as up to date as possible with the latest news surrounding pet travel and Brexit. The good news is that for the remainder of 2020, nothing has changed. As long as Covid-19 restrictions allow, you are free to travel to and from Europe with your pet – providing your pet has a valid pet passport. However, what will happen to your pet passport after Brexit? Well, just like our own, they may be changing. There are currently 3 possible outcomes and the results will depend on if the UK becomes: A Part 1 Listed CountryA Part 2 Listed CountyAn Unlisted Country Part 1 Listed Country Becoming a Part 1 Listed Country is arguably the best outcome in regard to travelling with your pet to Europe. Whilst you may still need to reapply for a pet passport, your pet’s new passport will still come under the PETS travel scheme. In other words, travelling with your pet will remain the same as it currently does. To qualify for a pet passport, your pet has to be microchipped and vaccinated against rabies. Rabies vaccination can be administered to your dog, cat or ferret from 12 weeks of age. The passport will be valid 3 weeks from the date of vaccination. Once you’ve qualified, you are free to travel to and from Europe with your pet as much as you like. Part 2 Listed Country If