Tag Archives: care



Every year for more than 30 years , the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association has organized Animal Life Week. This year, it will be held from October 1st to 7th .

This year’s theme highlights the five fundamental freedoms that animals need to survive and thrive.

This year’s theme is an opportunity to remind animal owners (not just pets) of the fundamentals they must provide to the animals entrusted to their care to ensure they lead a happy and healthy life.SEMAINE VIE ANIMALE

Even though many think they know the factors that can make a pet happy, it is good to be reminded of them from time to time and Animal Life Week is a good opportunity to do so.

What is the origin of the five freedoms?

According to the OIE (World Organization for Animal Health), animal welfare “refers to the way in which an animal evolves in the conditions that surrounds it”.

The OIE guidelines on animal welfare also refer to the universally recognized “five fundamental freedoms” laid down in 1965 to describe the rights of animals under human responsibility.

In 2002, at the request of its Member States (including Canada), and recognizing that animal health is a fundamental component of their well-being, the OIE expanded its mandate to include standards on the well- being.

The first OIE intergovernmental standards on animal welfare were published in 2005.

The standards adopted focus on the welfare of terrestrial animals and farmed fish in specific configurations.

They are regularly updated as scientific knowledge evolves.

OIE standards are adopted by consensus at the World Assembly of National Delegates of the OIE, which means that all Member States undertake to apply them at national level, disregarding each state’s cultural and economic situation.

The Five Animal Freedoms

Pet owners can protect the Five Animal Freedoms by:

  1. Providing appropriate nutrition

Prevent hunger and thirst by providing fresh water and food to ensure vigorous health.

  1. Providing appropriate socialization

Give the opportunity to spend time with or without members of their species according to their needs.

  1. Providing appropriate accommodation

Provide a suitable environment that includes a shelter and a comfortable rest area to avoid discomfort.

  1. Providing appropriate veterinary care

Promote the absence of pain, injury or illness through prevention or prompt diagnosis and treatment.

  1. Allowing animals to behave normally

Promote the ability to express normal behavior by providing adequate space, adequate facilities, tools and accessories, and by not punishing animals when they exhibit undesirable behavior.


You want your animals to be happy? You must then protect their five fundamental freedoms.

All provinces have organizations that promote and protect animal welfare. Most of these organizations are underfunded and require volunteers and donations. Do not hesitate to support them.

 Useful links

OIE Animal welfare


Canadian Veterinary Medical Association: Animal Health Week 2017


If you ever have any questions, do not hesitate to contact a member of the medical team of the Clinic (514-634-4190) who will be happy to assist you.

About the clinic: The Lachine Veterinary Clinic offers an unmatched and personalized service to pet owners from Lachine, LaSalle, Dorval and Pointe Claire, but also across the West Island of Montreal (West Island) and Laval, and has done so ,since 1982.




Rabbit dental care


Does your rabbit need orthodontic care? As curious as it may seem, dental malocclusion in rabbits is an important problem and is often under diagnosed.

The poor apposition of the teeth is one of the main causes of the loss of appetite in rabbits.

The origins of the malocclusion are multiple. We speak mainly of genetic causes, traumas and dental abscesses.animal-1846462_960_720

The diet of rabbits is very abrasive, which has the effect of wearing the teeth during chewing. To compensate for this wear, the teeth of rabbits grow continuously. The molars are aligned so that the wear surfaces are flat with sharp edges, allowing effective chewing of fibre. The teeth must be properly aligned to allow for proper wear of maxillary and mandibular teeth.

Rabbits with malocclusion usually exhibit excessive drooling, appetite and weight loss. Anorexia is frequently progressive. First, the animal stops eating its pellets, then its hay, then, finally its vegetables. Often the animal seems interested in its food. He even goes to put food in his mouth, to drop it shortly after. Owners often mention that these rabbits grind their teeth.

Loss of appetite should be addressed promptly in rabbits, because if it persists too long, it can become lethal.

To make a precise diagnosis, your veterinarian will often have to put your rabbit under anesthesia, especially if his mouth is full of saliva and a problem in the back teeth is suspected.

Depending on the type of problem, its origin and its location, treatments will be suggested. Some advanced cases can sometimes be relieved, but cannot be cured permanently. Some rabbits will require regular visits to their veterinarian.

So the best solution is prevention. Offer a rich fibre diet containing a large amount of hay, ideally Timothy as well as good leafy green vegetables.

Where possible, acquire the rabbit from a breeder who is known to produce animals free from malocclusion. And finally, after buying the rabbit, have it checked immediately by your veterinarian to make sure it is free from birth defects and infections.

If you ever have any questions, do not hesitate to contact a member of the medical team of the Clinic (514-634-4190) who will be happy to assist you.

About the clinic: The Lachine Veterinary Clinic offers an unmatched and personalized service to pet owners from Lachine, LaSalle, Dorval and Pointe Claire, but also across the West Island of Montreal (West Island) and Laval, and has done so ,since 1982.

Inappropriate Elimination in cats

Inappropriate Elimination in cats according to the veterinarians of the Lachine Veterinary Clinic.

When a cat urinates or eliminates stools in the house and out of its litter box, it is never pleasant. This behavior is called inappropriate elimination. And the latter is the most common undesirable behavior encountered with cats.


The causes of an  inappropriate elimination can be divided in two: medical and non-medical .

Medical causes

In terms of medical causes, veterinarians at the Lachine veterinary clinic immediately think of urinary problems such as cystitis (bladder infection) or the presence of stones in the bladder. These conditions generate a lot of pain and  cats that have them tend to want to urinate very often, but in small amounts wherever they are, every time the pain becomes too intense.

Other diseases such as renal insufficiency, hyperthyroidism and diabetes, to name a few, cause excessive thirst and are associated naturally with frequent urination. Cats with these conditions find it difficult to hold back and sometimes, they urinate outside their tank when they cannot reach them in time.

Some geriatric diseases such as osteoarthritis can also cause inopportune elimination. If the tray is placed on a countertop or in a location that is not easily accessible, the arthritic cat will have greater  difficulty accessing it. Same thing if the walls of the litter box are very high, the cat can then have a lot of difficulty climbing up the litter box and will have no choice but to eliminate elsewhere.

Eventually, diseases of the digestive system such as colitis, intestinal parasites, constipation, blockage or infection of the anal bags, can result in the elimination of stools in the home.

Non-medical causes

Apart from medical causes, the major non-medical causes can be divided into three categories: aversion, preference and marking. In terms of aversion, a cat may not like its tray, the type of litter used, or where it is located. For example, if the tray is placed in the children’s playroom, it is quite possible that the cat hesitates to go to in his box.cat-336270_960_720

The strong odors that sometimes come out of the tank when it is not cleaned often enough, can sometimes discourage the cat from going there also.  Scented litters sometimes can cause the same problem. Finally, some ammonia-based detergents have the unfortunate property of leaving an unpleasant residual odor for cats, who ,let’s not forget, have a much more developed sense of smell than ours and will then avoid going into the box .

The type of litter used may also cause aversion in some cats, whether due to the texture or the inadequate amount of litter in the tray .

The height and style of the litter box can also cause undesirable aversion and elimination. Think of an inferior sized tray, too small for a big cat or conversely far too high for a kitten. Some bins are nowadays fitted with lids and this is not always adequate for some felines.

In terms of preference, it can be said that a cat may prefer one kind over another. It may prefer clumping litter to that made of traditional clay gravel. He may also prefer one place rather than another, especially if the box is in a busy place. In some cases, the texture and cleanliness of some places such as the carpet in the living room, the floor in the dining room, some fabrics such as clothes or plastic may seem more attractive to a cat.


Finally, marking is a normal behavior in cats, it is their way of leaving their business card, marking their territory or attracting a potential mate. It is however very unpleasant! Unsterilized cats  have a special way of marking: they mainly make it standing up, allowing small amounts of urine to escape on vertical surfaces. Some cats and sterilized cats will mark their territory by urinating on certain objects belonging to the owner. With these animals, this type of tagging is often associated with the presence of outside cats. It can also be a manifestation of anxiety in some cats . Note that the incidence of this type of marking increases with the number of cats living under one roof. One study reported a 100% chance in families with 10 or more cats.


Let’s see how to fix the problem.

No punishment!

In the first place, you must make sure that your cat does not suffer from a medical problem. You should therefore consult the veterinarians of the Lachine Veterinary Clinic.

It is essential to clean the soiled areas. We strongly recommend using products that will completely neutralize odors ,not masking products like certain fragrances. For more information, please contact us. You can also cover the areas soiled with a thick plastic. This can have the effect of discouraging the cat from eliminating on the covered location.

If it is an inopportune elimination related to the aversion phenomenon, you must carry out an impeccable maintenance of the tank: remove urine and feces as they appear. If you choose clumping litter, in addition to removing stools, you should remove the agglomerated urine pellets daily and change the litter once a week. When cleaning the tray, do not forget to use ammonia or bleach cleaners.

It is important to provide the cat with an inopportune elimination problem,  a good variety of bins and litters. Offer different models of different sizes.

Another good idea is to place bins in the places chosen by the cat. You can then move these containers to a more convenient location very gradually.

In a family where several cats live, it is also important to identify the culprit: if necessary, you should isolate the cats ,one by one for a short period of time, in a room. Also, remember that you should have at least one litter box per cat living under one roof, plus another , and up to five. So, in a family where four cats live, we should find five clean litter boxes!

Sterilization is effective in 90% of males and 95% of females to regulate  inappropriate eliminations .

In regards to sterilized cats that are marking; attempts should be made to limit the ability of house cats to view outside cats and ,when possible, to get rid of these cats . You must block visual access through windows and doors. You can also lock the cat in a room where he cannot see the outside cats. In some cases, motion sensors or fences can keep some outdoor cats out of the yard and away from the windows.

A behavioral consultation with a veterinarian is always indicated. Sometimes some medication may be prescribed to correct the problem when environmental changes or sterilization have not been effective. Talk to veterinarians at the Lachine Veterinary Clinic.

If you ever have any questions, do not hesitate to contact a member of the medical team of the Clinic (514-634-4190) who will be happy to assist you.

About the clinic: The Lachine Veterinary Clinic offers an unmatched and personalized service to pet owners from Lachine, LaSalle, Dorval and Pointe Claire, but also across the West Island of Montreal (West Island) and Laval, and has done so ,since 1982.

Emotional urination

The emotional urination problem or dogs that pee on our shoes.

Today, the Lachine Veterinary Clinic vets explain a very annoying behavioral problem that is often encountered with dogs.

Coming home from work, many dog ​​owners  are faced with an “agitated” animal that urinates when it sees or hears them come in the door . It also happens when guests come home. It’s always unpleasant when someone’s guest is urinated on  upon arrival. Especially if the guest in question is not a dog lover. Many times, veterinarians  at Lachine veterinary clinic get the same shoe treatment several times in consultation.

Generally, dogs suffering from this bad habit are very anxious and may even show signs of appeasement: lowering the body, yawn, moving ears back, diverting the gaze, tail carried low and  “involuntary” urination. Some dogs will even lay on their backs.

So if you are struggling with this problem and want to fix it, some behavior modification exercises can be performed.blissdodo

First, it is very important not to punish the animal suffering from anxiety or submissive urination! Verbally nor physically!

Second, you should ignore the animal upon arrival. It’s difficult! We must also avoid talking to him with a “baby” tone which, you know, excites them even more.  Give attention only once the dog as calmed down. Ideally, you should ask your guests to do the same. It is not always easy, especially when your guest loves animals.

To make your plan work, you must necessarily be able to discern the physical signs of a relaxed dog. It is when the body is not stiff,  jaw hanging relaxed and not tense in any way,  ears straight, but not rigid and eyes calm and relaxed. Generally, a relaxed dog does not constantly moan.

Third, avoid bending over the animal: this has the effect of worsening the situation.

Fourth, when you get home, redirect his attention with a treat or a toy when you enter your home ,drop the toy or treat on the floor without even speaking to him and without even looking into his eyes. Ideally, you should have the treat or toy in question at the time of your entry into the home. Some toys available on the market allow to hide food or a treat in them, which is very useful to divert your dog’s attention.

Finally, in specific cases where anxiety is difficult to control even with the behavior modification exercises, medication can be used to facilitate the therapy. But beware, the miracle pill does not exist, without the exercises  carried out every day, treatment is sure to fail. For more information on the available treatments, consult the veterinarians of the Lachine veterinary clinic.

The same modus operandi can be applied to dogs barking excessively, when the owners come home.

 Good luck and wait until that therapy has started to bear fruits before you go out and change your shoes!

If you ever have any questions, do not hesitate to contact a member of the medical team of the Clinic (514-634-4190) who will be happy to assist you.

About the clinic: The Lachine Veterinary Clinic offers an unmatched and personalized service to pet owners from Lachine, LaSalle, Dorval and Pointe Claire, but also across the West Island of Montreal (West Island) and Laval, and has done so ,since 1982.

Feeding your guinea pig

Guinea pigs love to eat, when they are healthy , they have a big appetite. This is why, it is important to offer guinea pigs ,quality food.  Like us, they are unable to naturally produce their own vitamin C, so we must give them foods rich in vitamin c and even give them a supplement on a daily basis.

A guinea pig who does not receive a vitamin C supplement or a diet rich in vitamin C, rapidly depletes  its reserves and can develop scurvy, a disease directly related to this deficiency.

The Lachine veterinary clinic veterinarians recommend you to feed your guinea pig as follows:chickpea2

  1. Fiber is a very important part of their daily diet. Timothy hay of good quality should be offered at will.
  2. Pellets (extruded food) is not essential if you provide enough green and hay, but it can be given in moderate amounts, about 1/4 cup (~ 60 ml) per day. Avoid diets containing grains like; (corn, sunflower, etc.).
  3. Offer him a variety of quality green vegetables, such as carrots ,heads of romaine lettuce, leaf lettuce, fresh parsley, fresh herbs, dandelion, pepper, fennel, etc. You can also offer him small quantities of fruits. He will like bananas, apples, strawberries and raspberries.
  4. Avoid vitamin supplement (except vitamin C of course) and minerals. As well as treats made from dairy products.
  5. Give vitamin C every day. You can dissolve 1/4 tablet of 1000 mg soluble vitamin C (Redoxon®) in a cup of water.
  6. If Your guinea pig refuses to drink by itself, offer 2.5 ml of this solution: dissolve 1/4 tablet of 1000 mg soluble vitamin C (Redoxon®) in 1/4 cup water . Do not forget to change the solution every day.
  7. You Can also offer him  tablets of vitamin C like the  Oxbow® brand. 1 tablet daily.

If you ever have any questions, do not hesitate to contact a member of the medical team of the Clinic (514-634-4190) who will be happy to assist you.

About the clinic: The Lachine Veterinary Clinic offers an unmatched and personalized service to pet owners from Lachine, LaSalle, Dorval and Pointe Claire, but also across the West Island of Montreal (West Island) and Laval, and has done so ,since 1982.

Prevention goes a long way in cost reductions

Do you know what are the top five diseases afflicting dogs and cats everywhere? Here are the top 5, according to a U.S. study. Note that the results can easily be applied here in Canada. What are they and what can be done to prevent them? That is the subject of our blog this week.

Financially speaking, it is much cheaper to prevent than to cure.

Financially speaking, it is much cheaper to prevent than to cure.

Dental diseases are by far the most frequently encountered diseases, more so  with cats than dogs. Periodontal diseases, as they are called, are the cause of many other health problems. Including among others, heart, liver and kidney diseases. How can I prevent periodontal disease? It’s easy! By brushing your pet’s teeth every day. What to do if your pet does not accept tooth brushing, despite all the positive conditioning techniques? Resign yourself and get them done by your veterinarian once a year.

The second disease most frequently seen in dogs and cats is externa otitis. That is to say, the inflammation of the canal and the outer pinna. Several reasons are responsible for externa otitis. How to prevent it? There are some tricks. Among others, keeping them clean and dry. If your dog swims in the pool,in  a lake or in a river, upon his return, dry his ears. If ever your pet has a tendency to produce a lot of wax, your veterinarian will recommend a product that will help keep them clean and dry. Warning! Many owners tend to exaggerate when it comes to cleaning  ears and that can cause ear infections in  itself. It then becomes an iatrogenic condition. Follow your veterinarian‘s recommendations. Many ear infections are allergic or atopic and of food origins. Consequently, by controlling them well, you will prevent their occurrence.

In third place comes diabetes. A clear upward trend has been noted since the last study in 2006. The main reason for this increase is the fact that, like their masters, more and more pets are obese. This makes them more likely to develop type II diabetes. A good low calorie diet and an exercise program tailored to your animal, especially dogs ,can help prevent this disease.

Since the study was conducted in the United States, it is not surprising that heart worm is in the top 5 of most frequently diagnosed diseases in dogs. Especially in the southern states of the U.S, where the disease is present 12 months a year. Anyways, even in Canada, this disease is easily prevented with  simple monthly medication.

Infestations by fleas complete the ranking. In areas where frost rages on for much of the winter, the incidence of flea infestations decreases considerably and people tend to forget about it. But when the good weather returns, these critters start to haunt our animals. Fortunately, as the four preceding conditions, fleas can be easily prevented. As we also mentioned in our blog about the awakening of nature and parasites, it is sometimes possible to administer a single monthly medication to prevent, fleas, heart worm and intestinal parasites all together. Financially speaking, it is much cheaper to prevent than to cure.

Health insurance for dogs and cats

Did you know that you can buy health insurance for your dogs and cats?

Like their very own Medicare cards, pets can have health insurance. Unfortunately in Canada, only dogs and cats can benefit from this . There is a company that provides insurances for exotic animals and birds, but only for U.S.A residents.Too bad, because exotic animals (rabbits, ferrets, guinea pigs, reptiles …) and birds from every other country, are in dire need of this type of coverage.

These companies offer plans that also cover preventive care.

These companies offer plans that also cover preventive care.

Obviously, if you are able to put a certain amount of money every month (which varies depending on the company and the type of plan chosen) in a savings account, you do not need such insurance. But if your pet becomes seriously ill before you have managed to accumulate enough money to pay the bill in full, you may end up putting your finances at risk.

Several companies offer insurance for dogs and cats. For example, Petsecure® is very popular and enjoys a good reputation, but there are others.

These companies offer plans that also cover preventive care, such as annual exams, vaccinations, urine tests, stool tests, testing for heart worm, parasite treatments (heart worm, fleas, intestinal parasites) and even blood tests. Quickly, these benefits can become very interesting to any potential insurance buyer.

If you have at heart ,the health of your pet, but also want peace of mind, you should subscribe to such insurance. Here are two important points to consider if you are not convinced. Veterinary fees in Quebec have experienced adjustments in recent years ,and although they are still the lowest in Canada, they are now closer to those of other Canadian provinces. In addition, the range of services offered by your veterinarians has evolved greatly in recent years. Magnetic resonance, computed tomography (Scan), ultrasound, radiation, etc.. These tools and techniques can save lives, but can be expensive.

Each company offers plans that are similar in some respects and different in others. We suggest that you ask for estimates from several companies,in short,shop around . Another great idea is to talk to your veterinarian.

Adherence to such insurance offers the comfort of knowing that,if stricken with an illness, your pet will receive the care it needs without compromise.