Many families are taking advantage of the lock down to start a long term relationship – with a new pet.
If you have a new puppy, kitten or rabbit joining your family – congratulations! This is a lovely time.
You may be asking yourself what to do about their medical needs.
The answer is simple.
For rabbits, even house-rabbits, you should arrange their vaccinations as soon as they are ten weeks old. This is because the three fatal conditions that we can vaccinate against (myxomatosis, and the two forms of rabbit haemorrhagic disease) can be spread by flying insects, which can easily fly into your home.
For puppies, you should book their vaccines, as usual, so that they can get outside and be exercised.
But for kittens, you can ask yourself whether the little individual will accept being an indoor kitten for a little longer than usual. If it’s clear they are desperate to get out, and they are starting to destroy your home to achieve it, then arrange their vaccines. If they are happy being home-bods, then vaccination can wait a little.
If you have adopted a new adult pet, please call to discuss their vaccine status.
At my clinic, The Mewes Vets, we have contact-free appointments available for checking new arrivals in the family, and ensuring that their vaccine status is up to date. Better still, we are still able to give all the advice you need to get them off to a great start, via a phone call.
One detail you should consider is their feelings as lockdown is relaxed. If a pet has known nothing but your constant presence, it will be a terrible shock to them should you revert to being absent all week long.
I advise that all new arrivals in your home should be gently encouraged to take a quiet time out for short periods every day. You can gradually build these up to about two hours of alone time every day, even though you are actually home. This will really help them cope emotionally when you are free to go to the pub, shops or work again, and reduce the risk of separation anxiety in the future.