The Hovawart Club of Great Britain

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Breed Notes - 15 Dec 2010
Anybody who has ever bred a litter of puppies will understand exactly what I mean when I say that one of my worst nightmares happened this week. A really nice lady, and a super puppy home, telephoned to tell me that the puppy we had bred, and sold to her, had suddenly died. We all want our puppies to grow up and live full happy lives, ideally for fourteen or fifteen years, so when quite out of the blue the voice at the end of the ‘phone delivers such a statement you can’t really take it in. We will know more details during the forthcoming days, when the PM is completed, but suffice to say that this 20 month old puppy had very few symptoms. He was slightly lethargic, and his breathing was a bit laboured, but he had a normal temperature, normal appetite and normal bowel and bladder functions. He was taken to the owner’s Veterinary surgery and examined, but with so few indications sent home with instructions to observe him carefully and return if anything further developed, or if the owner was worried, to ring. With no further signs of his health deteriorating and the puppy still eating normally, the owner felt maybe he was over whatever it was. Obviously not the case, and the youngster died the following day. I have heard people talking about it, and even read things on a screen in our own Vet’s waiting room, warning of the dangers of slugs and snails, but is this, could this be a death due to Lung worm? I believe it does affect young dogs, and I have also read that it is very toxic and needs early diagnosis to give the animal the best chance possible. Be warned, drinking from puddles, and eating slugs, snails, frogs etc. is not good. Lung worm seems to occur in particular areas of the country, and although there is no cure as such, a good preventative is a regular dose of “Advocate”(or other recommended product). This is such a sad business and I don’t mean to distress folk at this normally happy time of the year, but be aware, and if in doubt give your own Vet a ring.

I didn’t think LKA was quite as much fun as usual this year, the halls seemed to be quiet, the stands expensive, and the refreshments even more so. Although Orchid got a first prize card and the Judge, Simon Parsons was gentle and efficient, I never like being the only one in the class, which was the case on Saturday. Maggie Spencer on the other hand was in a strong class and should feel well pleased with her second with Isa, beating several other breeds. I think my day may well have been influenced by the heavy colds both John and I have at the moment. Today at Ringcraft though, there was no stopping Acorn and me, together (one at each end) we won a lovely prize for the best “seasonally” decorated lead. A Very Happy Christmas to you all, and success in all your dog pursuits for 2011. Remember to enjoy every minute you have with your pets, life is too short and precarious to take any other view.

Elaine Betts
01544 318705
elaine@pineshovawarts.co.uk.
This article was posted on: 08-Dec-10