Better to be safe than sorry with your pets

Is your dog or cat keeping secrets from you?

Our animal companions tend to hide health problems from us.

So, even if it seems like a nuisance, seeing your veterinarian on a regular basis can help pick up on problems before they become serious.

Dental disease, lumps and bumps on the skin, increasing or decreasing bodyweight, joint stiffness and changes in the ability to walk caused by arthritis occur so slowly that we often don’t notice them.

Your vet can help spot these problems.

How can you tell if there might be a serious problem? If your dog or cat’s appetite has diminished or they have lost weight, they are less active than usual, or if they are vomiting or have diarrhoea or loose stools, go straight to the vet.

Even if there are no obvious symptoms, if your dog or cat is less than ten, you should visit the vet annually; older than that, the visit should be at least every six months.

New strains of diseases appear all the time, for example a new strain of parvovirus was found in Australia this year which is extremely contagious and fatal in 50 per cent of cases.

Companion animals depend on us for their welfare. In return for our care, they offer unconditional love. It’s worth any inconvenience to make sure they are well.

Ashley Fruno,  associate director PETA  Australia

Power of communication

There are three basic kinds of discussion.

One is when people are young and have open minds.

By talking things over, they are forming opinions, that may stay with them for the rest  of their lives.

The second one is when people have grown up and still want to broaden their knowledge.

They are engaging in debates with people, who have similar interests.

Such discussions are less common, but can be very fruitful.

The third one is when people have grown up and their minds has become fully formed (crystalised).

They tend to believe that they know best.

Rather then changing their personal views, they are trying to force them on other people.

Some of them delight in making thunderous, damning speeches, accentuated with theatrical gestures.

Discussions of this kind are taking place in private homes, as well as on the public platforms.

They can degrade into nasty arguments with insinuations, personal insults, verbal abuse, or threats of physical violence.

Jiri Kolenaty, Rushworth

Have you got an opinion? Send a letter to the editor to addynews@fairfaxmedia.com.au

Letters to the editor guidelines: A letter to the editor is one way to have your say. All letters must be signed and carry the name, full address and daytime telephone number(s) of the author. We will publish the writer’s name and suburb/town. In rare cases, we may consent to withholding a writer’s name and suburb/town. Letters should be no more than 250 words and may be edited for space, clarity and legal reasons. Shorter letters will be given preference. Letters which are deemed inappropriate will not be published.