Archive for category Veterinary Medicine

Dogs And Autism: Human Sanity Concerns Over ‘Canine Health Concern’

As friends, stalkers, regular readers or simply plain-old psychics might know, I’ve been out of the country for a week, throwing myself off the side of mountains in the name of adrenaline, enjoyment and over-priced middle-class adventure-holiday fun. Hence my shocking goggle-tan, slight working-class-guilt-pangs and radio silence here on the blog. Fortunately, I had a great time away… but I’ve got to say I’m a bit disappointed by how things were when I got back. People are still pretending to talk to the dead, homeopathy’s still on the NHS, and the Daily Mail is still pumping out batshit lunacy. Really, did you all do nothing while I was gone? Shocking.

Speaking of the Daily Mail and my own relative silence of late, here’s something uber-old-hat by now (news these days moves so fast) but I felt I had to write it up partly because a) it’s batshit insane, b) it’s a good example of how fallacious arguments are entirely interchangeably applicable to a whole range of topics and c) it gives me a chance to make some cheap gags:

Vaccines ‘are making our dogs sick as vets cash in’ Source: Daily Mail (obviously).

See what I mean? Replace ‘dogs’ for ‘babies’ and ‘vets’ for ‘doctors’, and you’ve got a textbook anti-vaccination statement, a la Miss McCarthy. And it doesn’t stop there:

“Vaccines given to dogs are making them ill, a pet charity claimed yesterday. Profit-hungry drug companies and vets are ‘frightening’ dog owners into inoculating their pets more often than necessary, according to Canine Health Concern.”

If this isn’t PR for the Canine Health Concern charity, I don’t know what is. And it doesn’t stop there, either Read the rest of this entry »

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In Defence Of Conventional Medicine – View From The Vet

White GSD at the Vet, courtesy of Ildar Sagdejev (

Conventional Medicine: Natural, holistic, and safe

As alternative medicines seem to get so much media exposure, I thought it was time I tried to explain how the conventional approach to medicine works, as I think people take it for granted without really being aware of what is involved. Alternative therapists often promote their treatments as being natural, safe and holistic, when often they are anything but that!

As a vet I believe I take a holistic approach to how I practise veterinary medicine, and approach my cases. If someone brings an ill animal into the surgery, before I examine it, I take a detailed history, which includes asking questions about the animal’s diet and lifestyle…. What food does it eat? Any recent change in diet? How many animals in the household, indoor or outdoor, and how many are showing symptoms. Any recent stress factors (e.g. moving house, people moving into or out of the home, recent kennelling, trauma, accidents or fights; major renovations). I’ll look at its previous medical history and check if it’s on concurrent medication, and check if the owners have medicated it with ‘over the counter’ or their own medication. What flea and worming treatments are being used, and when last applied. Vaccination status. Body condition. The animal’s signalment, ie breed, age, sex, entire/ neutered, all of which affect the conditions it could be susceptible to. I’ll keep in mind that very young, or old animals, as well as those that are obviously ill, may not be able to tolerate certain medications, or procedures. Read the rest of this entry »

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