Vet Hansel answers your questions about pet care in this weekly advice column, created in partnership with the Bahrain Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (BSPCA). It will also highlight each week some of the animals in the BSPCA sanctuary, in the hope of finding each of them in a loving home.
Question: My fluffy dog Baloo seems to be shedding an unusual amount of fur. Should I be concerned about this and take him to a vet or will it subside on its own?
Answer: It’s that time of the year in Bahrain when dogs begin to shed their coats and this is known to last from two weeks to a month.
All the dogs undergo a natural process of shedding fur seasonally, twice a year, in spring and fall.
However, not all shedding is seasonal.
Medical skin conditions such as bacterial infections (pyoderma), fungal infections (ringworm), parasitic infections (mange) and allergies (atopy) or hormonal imbalances can cause hair loss in dogs.
Symptoms such as scratching, irritation and bald patches are likely to occur in such cases.
A diet deficient in essential fatty acids also leads to poor coat conditions in the dog and thereby aggravates the natural shedding process.
The veterinarian can easily diagnose these skin infections and dietary deficiencies.
If the dog has some abnormal and excessive hair loss, he should be checked at the earliest.
One way to reduce shedding in dogs is to brush them at least once daily. There are different types of brushes available for various breeds at pet stores such as sticky rollers which can be used to remove pet fur from the clothes, car seats and furniture.
Regular grooming is a necessity to ensure your dog is healthy.
- Dr Hansel is a veterinary consultant and surgeon for the BSPCA and Charis vets. Please send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
BSPCA’S DOG OF THE WEEK IS JUNIPER
Age: Two and a half years
Juniper is a sweet and playful girl with a bright and beautiful smile. Her playfulness and genuine curiosity is what makes her personality stand out. Her loving nature and willingness to learn makes her a perfect friend and family member. Come and meet her this weekend and know what he is all about. Juniper is neutered, tick-treated and fully vaccinated.
BSPCA’S CAT OF THE WEEK IS MEOWSY
Age: One and a half years
Meowsy is a fluffy and full-of-life cat who loves to chow down on good food and snacks. His friendly and appreciative nature is the best way to describe him. He adores and loves to be around people and can enhance any home environment with his presence. Meowsy is neutered and fully vaccinated.
- If you are interested in adopting Juniper, Meowsy or any of our other cats, kittens, dogs and puppies, please visit the Animal Welfare Centre in Askar. From the Alba roundabout, take the road sign posted Askar and Durrat Al Bahrain and at the third signal, take a right on to the truck road and after approximately 800m you will see the shelter on the right side, just before the flyover. Or, log onto the website www.bspca.org for directions. The shelter is open from 9am to 5pm on Sundays to Thursdays and 9am to 1pm on Fridays, Saturdays and public holidays. The shelter accepts animals 24 hours a day, seven days a week.