news, information and advice from dave cumber vets
We had a great evening on Friday 23rd June at the Wessex FM local Heroes awards ceremony at the Weymouth & Portland Sailing Academy. Dave Cumber Vets were sponsoring the Animal Award. The award celebrate animal rescuers, animal carers and indeed animals who are heroes themselves!
It was tough work for to choose a winner however it went to the fantastically caring Kia, the German Shepherd. Once you find out more about Kia, we think you’ll agree that she was very worthy of her trophy.
Watch the video of Kia’s story to find out more…
Open Day at Dave Cumber Vets to raise funds for a defibrillator at Link Park
Dave Cumber Vets moved into their new state of the art surgery at Link Park in Weymouth in November 2016, since then the team have been rushed off their feet looking after poorly animals, new clients and getting to grips with the new facilities at the surgery.
It has always been part of the plan to open the doors to the surgery to existing and new clients a “Behind the Scenes” Open Day at Dave Cumber Vets in Weymouth. The date has been set for the Open Day and it will be held on Sunday 13th August from 10am until 4pm.
Dave Cumber of Dave Cumber Vets said “This should be a very exciting day for the team, our clients and our animal patients. It will give everyone a chance to have a good look behind the scenes at the new surgery to see and experience some of the new equipment and facilities as well as meeting our vets, nurses and other members of the team. As we are in the business of health and well-being, the team decided that Link Park really should have a lifesaving heart defibrillator installed on site, just in case anyone should need it, as most of the team at Dave Cumber Vets are trained to use a defibrillator. The defibrillator would be located at Dave Cumber Vets and we need to raise around £1500 for the equipment. It is hoped that we can raise some vital funds towards this at the Open Day.”
Activities for the Open Day at Dave Cumber Vets
There will be lots of things to do at the Open Day, outside activities will include the Wessex FM Roadshow with live broadcast by Dave Goulden (9am – 1pm), pet merchandise, pet food and supplies, pet health checks and a new pet Lame detector mat. There will be demonstrations of how to use the defibrillator plus how to administer CPR on humans and dogs. A Cake and Ice Cream stand plus a raffle to help raise funds for the Defibrillator. There will be lots of free parking plus tours of the surgery every 15 minutes, a free doggy park and crèche for animals whilst their owners take a look around the surgery.
Within the new £1million surgery visitors will be able to meet the team, attend “Pop up Clinics” which will include top tips on how to give your pet a pill, how to tell if your pet is ill and advice on dental care, health and well-being plus free pet weight checks.
There will also be an opportunity to have Pet Portraits taken and to enter the raffle and a free prize draw.
New and Existing Customers Welcome
Dave Cumber went on to say “The overall objective of the Open Day is to welcome existing and new customers from Weymouth and Dorchester to view the new surgery at Link Park. We also want to raise funds for the Link Park defibrillator. Please come along and take a look at the Behind the Scenes open day at Dave Cumber Vets.”
Grass seeds (or grass awns) are a summer menace so protecting your pet from grass seeds is essential. Every year from June until late Autumn we treat a lot of dogs with problems related to grass seeds. These grass seeds are shaped like a barb with a sharp pointed end and can work their way through skin or into body openings. Between the toes is the most common site but they can enter the ear canal, be sniffed up the nose, get trapped in the eyes or be swallowed or inhaled. Unfortunately they often move and break up within the body making them very hard to find.
Wherever they end up they cause pain and inflammation. You might see your pet licking at its feet, suddenly starting to cough or sneeze, have a sore, mucky eye or have a painful swelling between the toes or under the skin. Generally the problems do not go away unless the grass seed is removed. This usually involves sedating or anaesthetising your pet and investigating surgically. Very often the grass seed is not found on the first attempt and further investigations may be required. Occasionally grass seeds work their way internally and cause serious life-threatening illnesses. Thankfully this is rare.
What you can do to protect your pet from grass seeds
You can help protect your pet from grass seeds by:
- avoiding running your dog through long grass
- discouraging your dog from chewing grass
- checking your dog’s feet after each walk – especially between the toes
- checking the fur around the opening of the ears
- consider clipping around feet, ears and belly on long-haired breeds
Download our grass seed leaflet for more information on protecting your pet from grass seeds
International Cat Care runs the “Cat Friendly” scheme where practices can attain bronze, silver or gold awards based on how well they meet the very special needs of their cat patients and owners.
Most cat owners know all too well how stressed their pets can become on a visit to the vet especially if they have to stay for an operation. We started working to improve the experience for our cat patients while we were still at the old Chickerell Road surgery with our vet Sarah and receptionist Mel. We did what we could, such as separate cat ward and operating theatres, but were very limited by the actual building.
Our new surgery was built to provide the best veterinary care for cats
When we were designing the new Weymouth veterinary surgery at Link Park, cat welfare was very high on the list of priorities and the surgery was designed to give cats the best, least stressful experience we could possibly achieve. The new design included:
- separate waiting areas with screening from dogs
- separate reception with a shelf to rest cat cages on (cats HATE being placed on the floor)
- separate cat ward and theatres accessible without going through any areas with dogs
- specially designed cages for day patients and larger ones for longer term inpatients
- longer 15 minute consultations to allow cats and kittens time to relax
- separate cat consultation room
- isolation ward
Throughout this time, Sarah and Mel were working in the background keeping us focused and on target to get it absolutely right for our cat patients.
We are delighted to have the gold award but even more rewarding is to see how “chilled” our in-patient cats now are. Nurse Libby noted that she used to get scratched quite often by stressed cats but since moving to our new surgery she hasn’t been scratched once! We strive to provide the best possible veterinary care for cats.
Thanks to Sarah and Mel for all their hard work.
Well that was an interesting week! It all started when we thought our clients ought to be warned that we had already seen a significant rise in adder bites on dogs this year. We put a news item on our website with an easy guide of what to look for and what to do should your dog be bitten by an adder. This information also went on our Facebook page and as a press release because we wanted to warn as many dog owners as possible.
To our surprise our “adder alert” was picked up within a few hours not only by Wessex FM but also by ITV Meridian, BBC Radio Solent and the Dorset Echo. Suddenly everyone wanted interviews including live phone interviews – all very exciting!
It is also slightly worrying because you never know which “snippet” from a very long interview they may choose to broadcast; “local vet Dave Cumber says….”. Another concern is to keep things in proportion – the last thing we want to do is scare visitors away with stories of plagues of venomous snakes, especially with a bank holiday weekend looming.
ITV Meridian were keen to come down and film at the surgery and if possible meet one of the affected dogs with its owners. Sam our head nurse was set to contacting clients with dogs that had been bitten and “Millie” Matthews was invited in with her owner. Everything was set until there was a high profile incident in London. Understandably adders in Dorset went onto a back burner and our best laid plans went with them! We had to reschedule everything for the next day when luckily Millie could still make it. She was an absolute star and a natural in front of the camera. Richard Slee was not only the reporter but cameraman, sound engineer and editor all rolled into one and at one point I actually got a go behind the camera when he wanted a shot of himself with Millie.
It was all very interesting, if slightly stressful but the most important thing is that the original warning about the danger of adder bites reached as many people as possible.
If you would like to see our moment in the spotlight you can watch the ITV piece here.
We have had 5 dogs bitten by adders brought to the surgery in the last couple of weeks. Adder bites on dogs are a medical emergency and can be fatal so you should act quickly if you think your dog may have been bitten. You may actually see the adder and your dog will almost certainly cry out as bites are painful. There is usually severe swelling around the bite area and you may see 2 puncture wounds. Bites around the face and throat are particularly dangerous because of the swelling. If the bite is severe your dog may actually collapse.
If you think your dog has been bitten:
- Try and keep it as calm and still as possible.
- It is better to bring transport to the dog rather than making them walk back.
- Go straight to your vet.
- Do not interfere with the wound or tie any sort of tourniquet because there is a danger of tissue damage around the bite.
The treatment may include:
- anti-inflammatory drugs
- painkillers and
Early treatment is usually successful but the longer the delay the worse the prognosis. Dogs that have been bitten but not treated can go on to develop heart, kidney and liver failure over the next few days.
Adders are the only poisonous snake in Britain and can be active between February and October especially during the warm summer months. They are quite common in Dorset, favouring open rough ground, heathland and the edge of woodland.
They are easily told apart from grass snakes and slow worms by their distinctive, zig-zag markings and they can reach 70cms in length. Here at the surgery we generally see 2 or 3 cases a year, so seeing 5 cases in April is unusual. Four of those cases were along the Fleet and the fifth was at Hardy’s Monument so take particular care if you are walking in those areas.
As in so many cases early action is the most important thing, so if you are worried give us a ring straight away.
Do you have a favourite cafe, pub or restaurant where you and your dog are both welcome? I know Gru and Margot often accompany us to breakfast in the woods or a pub lunch after a walk in the fabulous Dorset countryside. Now is your chance to recommend your favourite dog-friendly destination in Dorset by voting in the 2017 Dorset Magazine Food, Drink and Farming awards.
We are delighted to be sponsoring the brand new “Dog Friendly” award this year so follow the link below and get voting! Gru and Margot can’t wait to hear where to go next. Voting ends on 30th June 2017.
No, we haven’t taken up treating horses again! This is an appeal to pick up your dog’s poo
AND put it in a bin!!! We all very aware of the many very good reasons for clearing up after your dog – health, hygiene, looks. Nobody likes dog poo even if it has been bagged up. There seems to be an increase in dog owners bagging the poo then just leaving it on paths -who do they think is going to pick it up and bin it? We’ve seen this in towns and out in the middle of nowhere. Even biodegradable bags take months or even years to rot down so what happens in the meantime. It is our responsibility as dog owners to dispose of dog poo and that doesn’t mean leaving it lying around in a bag. What right have we to spoil the environment for other people?
We walk and run with our flatcoats , Gru & Margot, and we always carry a “Dickie Bag” which we have found to be very useful. They are made of neoprene and come in different sizes and colours. The company is called Duck Soup if you want to have a look but this is just one way to ensure we can pick up and transport dog poo, you can probably come up with many more!
Enough nagging for now but please do consider other people when you walk your dog – the dog owning community is under enough pressure without adding this to the list. Thank you.
The “coming soon” sign has been removed because we moved on the weekend 12/13th November to our new hospital standard surgery at Link Park. You can see our latest moving leaflet by clicking here. The doors opened to our clients on Monday 14th November at 8am!
The address of the new surgery is:
Unit D1, Link Park, Chickerell Link Road, Weymouth Dt3 4FL
It is all very exciting but Dave has been working on the idea of a new purpose built surgery for many years. This building has been designed with you and your pets as the top priority. All our existing clients will be well aware of the difficulties at the Chickerell Road surgery – limited parking, small waiting area with no ability to keep cats separate from dogs, clinical space over 3 floors with narrow domestic staircases – it’s a wonder we coped for so long. We were desperately short of space and this was beginning to stop us from offering all the things we would like to for your pet.
Not any longer!
- the New Link Park surgery has loads of easy parking
- 4 times as much space
- hospital standard facilities
- separate waiting areas, kennelling and operating theatres for cats and dogs
- dedicated diagnostic suite with separate operating theatres
- Groomer Gill has brand new facilities
- meeting room for client information evenings, puppy parties etc
- upstairs accessed by easy wide stairs and a proper lift
- full air conditioning
- Link Park itself is very easily accessed via the Chickerell Link Road and will have lots of other useful stores including a well equipped pet shop – the Pet Experience
- and all only 0.8 mile from our existing surgery
Dave has made a short video where he talks about our reasons for moving which you might find interesting – click here to hear what he has to say.
You can also take a look at our information leaflet and architect’s 3-D plans by clicking the links below:
We believe that protecting your pet against all the most common (and sometimes potentially fatal) diseases is one of the most important things you can do as a responsible owner. When you get a new puppy of course you want them to be able to go out and about as soon as possible BUT they rely on you to ensure that they are as safe as possible when they do go out into the wide world. Puppies will need a course of 2 injections a few weeks apart so give our Weymouth or Dorchester surgeries a ring and our staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have and to book your puppy an appointment.
If you would like to combine your puppy’s vaccinations with flea and worm protection as well as many other benefits while still saving money, take a look at our pet health plan and puppy package.
By now you are probably aware that from 6th April 2016 it is compulsory to have your dog micro-chipped and registered with an approved database. Failure to do so could result in a fine of £500. Any dog over 8 weeks MUST be micro-chipped and if you are caught with a dog not chipped AND with correct contact details registered, you will have 21 days to do so before you are fined. The regulation is going to be enforced by local authorities, police constables, community support officers and anyone else given authority by the secretary of state.
As vets, we will NOT be “policing” this new legislation. However, as vets, our prime responsibility is for the well-being of your pets and we would be negligent if we did not point out the benefits of micro-chipping – so we will be asking the question when you come to see us.
There are several approved database companies and here at dave cumber vets we recommend Petlog but our chip readers will pick up chips from any other company. Petlog is the largest company and we have found them to be one of the most reliable to deal with which is why we have chosen them. To have your pet chipped with us will cost just £10.00 up until the end of April this year.
From April 2016, when you come to the surgery, we will ask you if your dog is chipped and if the contact details are up to date so this can be marked on your record. If the answer is “no” we will recommend that you take immediate steps to get your pet chipped. We can do this for you in an ordinary consultation. We are also very happy to scan your pet to check that the chip is still working and that details are correct – just book a nurse appointment at either our Dorchester or Weymouth surgeries.
We will certainly not be reporting you to the authorities but it will be noted that we have asked the question. We have always recommended having your pet micro-chipped and regardless of the legal question it is a very good thing. On many occasions owners have been reunited with their lost pets quickly and efficiently by using microchip information. So please do act now to protect your pet!
There is some very helpful information on the FAQ section on the Petlog website which you can get by clicking on the link below or any of our staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have.
We very much hope that your pets stay well this Easter but if you do need us our opening hours over the holiday are listed below. We also have our own vets and nurses on call 24 hours a day right over the holiday weekend so we are only a phone call away if your pet needs us urgently.
Calling all qualified or training nurses – we have a vacancy coming up soon and would love to hear from you if you would like to join our team. Click here to go to our staff vacancies section where head nurse Emma can tell you all about it.
We are delighted to be hosting a Scout post box at our Dorchester surgery again this Christmas. For a donation of 25p per card you can have your Christmas cards delivered to many local areas. Simply put your cards and donations in the yellow box in our Dorchester Surgery on Mellstock Avenue up until noon on 19th December and they are guaranteed delivery before Christmas.
Areas covered are:
Allington, Ash Hill, Athelhampton, Bothenhampton, Bradford Peverell, Bradpole, Bridport, Broadmayne, Bucland Newton, Burleston, Burton (nr Dorchester), Burton Bradstock, Cattistock, Cerne Abbas, Charlton Down, Charminster, Cokers Frome, Crossways, Dewlish, Dorchester, Drimpton, Forston, Frome Whitfield, Galton, Hurst, Lewell, Littlemayne, Litton Cheney, Loders, Martinstown, Milbourne St Andrew, Milton Abbas, Moigne Combe, Monkton, Moreton, Owermoigne, Pallington, Poundbury, Puddletown, Pyemore, Rew, Stratton, Sydling St Nicholas, Tincleton, Tolpuddle & Troytown, Uploaders, Waddock, Walditch, Warmwell, West Bay, West Knighton, West Stafford, Whitcombe, Winterbourne Abbas, Winterbourne Steepleton, Wolfeton, Woodsford & Wrackleford.
The buns have arrived! Practice manager Malcolm looks very happy to accept delivery of the Wessex FM Bun Run. As mentioned in this month’s editorial we have just started advertising on Wessex FM and last week were very excited to be the latest recipients of their Bun Run. All cakes were very gratefully received and many thanks to the Dorset Cake Company who provided the cakes. Dave was very sad to miss them as he was at our Dorchester surgery and by the time he got back they were all gone – no surprises there!
Fireworks are not now restricted to November 5th, they are often used to celebrate Christmas and New Year. We have kept all our firework advice up so click here for our article on helping your pet cope with fireworks and click here for our leaflet on firework phobia products.
As well as all the help and advice offered in our leaflet and article there is also a drug called Alprazolam which is proving to be useful for many dogs who find fireworks very stressful. In days gone by traditional sedatives have been used to try and help pets frightened by fireworks. It is now thought that, while the pet appears sedated with these drugs, they are actually still aware and stressed but less able to react to that stress. Alprazolam is in the same family of drugs as Valium and works differently to these traditional sedatives but it does require a certain amount of preparation beforehand. To find out more please follow the link or phone our staff at our Dorchester or Weymouth surgeries who will be happy to help.
Saturday 29th October is “Spooky Saturday” and new for this year is the “Freaky Pets Parade” which we are delighted to be sponsoring. Why not enter into the spooky spirit by entering the fancy dress competition with your pet – there are 3 categories with the winner of each getting a £20 voucher for use at the surgery. The whole day is full of spine-chilling activities and we will be in New Bond Street near Debenhams from 11am with lots of giveaways, leaflets about our move and just to have a chat before Dave judges the Freaky Pets Parade at 2.30. Dave, Gru and Margot will all be in costume so do come along and see us.
Gru modelling her costume!
Did you see us in the Echo? We felt it was time to let everyone know all the exciting changes that are coming over the next year. First the name change from Fielding and Cumber to Dave Cumber Vets and then the news that we are on the move. By this time next year we hope to be in our brand new purpose-built surgery in Link Park. Loads more space, lots of free parking, great new facilities…….