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‘Zero by Thirty’ – the fight to eradicate rabies

The global community is uniting to stop human rabies related deaths, with the theme of this year’s World Rabies Day being ‘Zero by Thirty.’
Australia’s Chief Veterinary Officer Dr Mark Schipp said that while Australia can celebrate rabies-free status, the disease continues to claim lives in other parts of the world.
“Rabies kills almost 60,000 people each year, with most of those deaths in Africa and Asia,” Dr Schipp said.
“The global target is to eliminate all human deaths caused by dog mediated rabies by 2030 – ‘zero by thirty.’
“The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources continually reviews biosecurity control measures to mitigate the risk of an infectious disease outbreak in Australia.
“Rabies is contracted through the bite of an infected animal, and most commonly spread by dogs.  Mass vaccination of dogs is the most effective, reliable and sustainable way to control and eliminate rabies.
“Other species including cats, monkeys and bats can also pass on rabies, and Australians are urged to play it safe, and seek treatment if bitten while travelling overseas.
“The department works closely with overseas counterparts like the Indonesian Ministry of Agriculture, to improve infectious disease management.
“Work carried out in partnership with countries like Indonesia plays a crucial role in safeguarding Australia from rabies as well as other exotic diseases.
“On home soil, early detection techniques are improving, and work is ongoing to enhance our response plan for rabies and other infectious diseases.
“There are strict rules in place about bringing animals into Australia, and our systems are proving extremely effective in keeping rabies at bay.
“The first rabies vaccine was developed by Louis Pasteur, and annual World Rabies Day marks the anniversary of his death on 28 September.”

Sunday October 29, 2017

Dress your pooch in the most scariest, wackiest and paws-itively adorable costume this Halloween for Port Melbourne’s “Port’s Howl-O-Ween” Event
On Sunday, 29 October 2017, Port Melbourne is proudly presenting Port’s Howl-O-Ween with a Doggy Trick or Treat Parade from 11am – 3pm on Rouse Street, Port Melbourne. The event presents itself after last year’s successful Port’s Paw Parade which saw hundreds of people come together to show off their beautiful and best dressed pets.

This year, Port Melbourne Business Association is turning it up with a Halloween theme that kicks off with a spooktacular parade, giving participants the chance to win incredible prizes and take part in the largest Doggy Trick or Treat walk Melbourne has ever seen! Choose to dress up (you and your pet) or come as you are for a fun day for everyone. Each doggy will receive a goody bag, and will receive a new ‘Treat’ at various checkpoints around the Parade Route. All monies from registrations will be donated directly to The Lost Dogs Home in North Melbourne. This Port Melbourne Halloween event will also showcase exhibitors, local delicacies, pampering for pooches and people, entertainment for young and old, and a series of competitions and contests throughout the afternoon.

Register your pooch in the parade now at the Port’s Howl-O-Ween Website ( and get busy planning a fabulous outfit for yourself and your pooch. All doggies registered early will also receive a FREE Howl-O-Ween Pet Portrait from event partner Erin King Photographer.

With Port Melbourne having more family K9’s than any other suburb this Howl-O-Ween Paw Parade is sure to be popular amongst the community – where everyone is welcome to bring along their furry friends of all shapes and sizes – it’s an awesome opportunity to bond with your best friend as well as make some new lifetime pals.

For further information and registration details please visit:
Improving welfare standards of Australia’s flat-faced dogs
Australia is a nation of dog-lovers and on this World Animal Day (4 October) the peak body for veterinarians, the Australian Veterinary Association (AVA), is raising awareness of the health and welfare concerns associated with flat-faced dogs.

AVA President, Dr Paula Parker said: “World Animal Day is all about raising the status of animals to improve welfare standards. It’s an opportunity to celebrate the important role that animals play in our lives and consider what we can do to ensure we consistently live up to our responsibility or duty of care to protect them.
“Veterinarians support and enhance animal welfare in every aspect of their professional lives.”

Last year, the AVA in conjunction with RSPCA launched a campaign called Love Is Blind, with the aim of raising awareness of the health and welfare concerns associated with brachycephalic (flat-faced) dogs.
“Some of our most popular breeds – including French Bulldogs, Pugs, British Bulldogs – are suffering serious health issues because they’ve been bred to look a certain way.

“Working in emergency practice, I see a lot of these dogs at the point of crisis. At this time of year as the weather warms up, it’s not uncommon to have an ICU full of brachycephalic dogs that need urgent medical attention because they can’t breathe.

“Because they don’t have normal muzzles, they can’t easily cool themselves in warm weather, and the soft tissues in their throats can swell and block the passage of air. They may faint, collapse or overheat, sometimes fatally, when exercising or excited. These dogs often need major surgery to improve their quality of life.

“Through the campaign our hope is to encourage the community to work together to address these welfare concerns in affected breeds so that breeding standards will change to promote the health and welfare of these dogs, over their looks,” Dr Parker said.

“World Animal Day is an opportunity for us all to consider how we can give these flat-faced dogs a better future.”
For more information visit Love is Blind

UK News

PIF announces details of new dog walking code

The Pet Industry Federation (PIF) has today announced details of a new code of practice for professional dog walkers which has been developed in collaboration with Dogs Trust and RSPCA.

Professional dog walking is becoming an increasingly common service due to the changing habits of the general population and a heightened awareness of animal welfare. The code aims to provide guidelines that professional dog walkers should conform to, ensuring the highest standards of welfare to the dog and with respect to the environment, as well as peace of mind to the owner.

The comprehensive ten-page code of practice is designed to provide dog walkers with guidance that will help them comply with the Animal Welfare Act 2006. It covers issues such as the health and welfare of dogs, in particular:
• Understanding each individual dog’s needs
• Transport
• Exercise
• Group walking

The code also covers the professional conduct of dog walkers, with regard to their impact on other animals and the environment; as well as the various pieces of legislation that they need to consider in order to comply with the law and qualifications they might like to consider undertaking.

The code of practice will be published shortly and its use will be promoted to dog walking businesses, local authorities, DEFRA, welfare groups and the pet owning public.

PIF Forum to reveal results into rabbit nutrition study

The Pet Industry Federation (PIF) will announce the results of its year long research study into the differences between feeding muesli and nuggets to rabbits at the Pet Industry Forum on the Tuesday 28 November at Whittlebury Hall, Towcester, Northamptonshire.

The study set out to validate a previous study (Meredith et al., 2015; Prebble et al., 2014; Prebble et al., 2015) on the subject of diet presentation and its effects on weight, feed intake and dental health, which had a profound impact on the industry because of a general lack of research into pet rabbit nutrition.

PIF’s year long independent study has taken place at two separate colleges and set out to assess the impact of two diet presentations (muesli vs nuggets) on weight, body condition score and the dental health of pet rabbits. The rabbits were not kept in laboratory conditions, but in outdoor pens to simulate how a rabbit may be kept in an outside home environment. The rabbits were allowed free access to hay and water and were provided with driftwood logs as a non-nutritional chew.

The dental health was assessed by a specialist veterinarian at the beginning, middle and at the end of the study. Dental assessments looked at malocclusion, elongation, slanting wear, ridging, fractures of incisors; direction, elongation, step/wave mouth, missing teeth and gingival health of cheek teeth, as well as facial indicators of dental health.

Nigel Baker, CEO of PIF said: “We are pleased to be looking further into rabbit nutrition and welfare. Many of our members sell rabbits as pets or sell rabbit food to pet owners, and it is important that we can convey the correct advice to them and their customers on how rabbits should be fed. Both muesli and nugget diets are readily available and the trade association has set out to bring clarity to this subject through academic research. Further research studies are being planned by PIF to aid knowledge into how we look after the welfare of our pets.”

Animal cruelty sentences increase to five years in prison

New government plans will bring England’s maximum prison sentence for animal cruelty in line with Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic.

The maximum sentence will now stand as five years. Courts can also issue an unlimited fine and ban offenders from keeping animals in future.

The new legislation will only be relevant to England. Devolved animal cruelty powers allow Wales and Scotland to set their own sentences, which currently stand as six and 12 month maximum sentences respectively. The Scottish government has announced plans to increase the maximum penalty.

Environment secretary Michael Gove said the new legislation will be aimed at: “those who commit the most shocking cruelty towards animals”.

Jacqui Cuff, Cats Protection’s advocacy and government relations manager, commented: “Cats Protection very much welcomes the government’s announced intention to increase sentences to a maximum of five years for serious crimes against animals.

“Sadly there are regular reports of cats suffering appalling acts of cruelty. These include cats being shot at deliberately with air guns or poisoned, as well as the horrific deaths and mutilations inflicted by the M25 cat killer. We hope this move will deter those intending to harm cats or indeed any other animal.”

Source: UK Pet Gazette
Australian retailers completely unprepared for Amazon’s arrival
Some Australian retailers may be scrambling to up the ante in preparation for the arrival of Amazon, but the vast majority are completely unprepared for the impending arrival of retail juggernaut Amazon, a new survey has shown.
Amazon is one of the world’s biggest retailers and it’s setting up shop in Australia, hiring more than 100 people in Sydney for roles in logistics, IT and security. It promises cheaper prices, faster delivery times and access to a greater range of products, including groceries.
While Australians can already buy from Amazon, local warehousing will enable the company to dramatically expand the kinds of products it can deliver.
And while 90% of survey respondents know that Amazon is on the way, only half (48%) knew about the Amazon Prime offering - a premium service that offers shoppers free and fast shipping options for customers.
Amazon Prime looks set to be a game changer for Australia. It enables customers to pay an annual fee of about $100 for free and fast delivery. About 60 million US households have signed up for the Amazon Prime service. Amazon also offers a service called Amazon Now, which promises to deliver products such as groceries in under an hour. Both of these premium services have the potential to blindside the efforts of Australian retailers.
The survey was undertaken by digital marketing agency DataSauce, founded by former Head of Digital at retail juggernaut Catch of the Day, Tzvi Balbin. DataSauce works with a range of retailers to improve their online reach including Seed Heritage, Focus On Furniture, French Connection and New Balance.
“The Amazon Prime offering is more advanced than almost any of the services offered by retailers in Australia. This means that even those who have upped the ante with quicker delivery times may still struggle to compete with this service and match the level of investment” Balbin says.
The online survey, which was undertaken in May this year also found that 71.3% of respondents shop online, meaning they’re prime candidates to want to utilise the Amazon Prime service. It also found that Paypal remains a favourite payment option for respondents, despite new layers ZipMoney and Afterpay claiming to be dominant market players.
Balbin trialled the Amazon Prime service a number of times on a recent trip to the US, and says the sheer ease and speed of the service has the potential to derail a number of Australian retailers.
“Amazon Prime in particular could be a game-changer in the Australian retail space. For many retailers, trying to compete with one or two day delivery and free shipping may prove too much for them to be able to compete.”
Balbin advised Australian retailers not to try and beat Amazon at their own game and their deep pockets, saying retailers need to instead focus on the one thing that truly sets them apart from their competition.
“You’ve also got to look at how omni-channel your business is, so the shopping experience is seamless. A number of physical retail outlets are optimising their customer experience so it’s seamless offline and online. It’s not enough to have in store pickup and claim to provide a true omni-channel experience,” Balbin says.
“At the end of the day, to beat Amazon you need to focus on their weaknesses. Niche down, build and nurture a fanatical community, tell a story and leverage loyalty. After all, Amazon is a one size fits all.”

Record-breaking attendance figures at PATS Telford

PATS Telford has broken all records with the number of visitors attending the two-day show surpassing the 2,000 mark for the third time in a row.

A total of 2,148 visitors came through the doors of The Telford International Centre, which was 7% higher than PATS Telford last year.

The successful show closed with visitors and exhibitors agreeing it had been a huge success, with the event delivering an unrivalled platform for the launch of hundreds of exciting new pet product innovations. 

Organiser Gordon Thomas said many of the companies exhibiting at PATS Telford were eager to point out the quality of people visiting their stands had been of the highest standard.

“Exhibitors told us they met with the key decision makers and buyers, and that was good to hear because we put in place measures that ensured the right people attended.

“Overall the response to PATS Telford 2017 has been excellent and positive, and proves that the pet industry is firmly behind this show.”

George Bramble, co-founder of Beco Pets, said: “I was very impressed with the quality of visitor, and in particular the large contingent of international visitors this year. It seems the UK pet industry in general and PATS Telford are going from strength to strength. We’ll definitely be back next year.”

Katie Goldsmith, of Collarways, commented: "We had a fantastic show - I even lost my voice from talking to so many people. There was a very good buzz in the halls and the orders taken exceeded all our expectations. It was great to see existing customers as always and we are excited to start relationships with all the new people we met."

And for Pet Munchies, who’ve been attending PATS shows for the past seven years, it just gets better and better with every show. “This year has been phenomenal,” said managing director Suzanne Rothman.

The show attracted an impressive number of international visitors, who felt the trip proved well worthwhile. Christer Wernborg, of Sweden, said: “The show was even better than I expected. I made a lot of new contacts and it’s a great way to discover new trends. I’m sure a lot of business will come out of this exhibition.”

The final word was left to award-winning pet retailer Paws and Claws, who summed up the mood of visitors. Liz Gleave said: “PATS Telford is always a great experience for anyone involved in the pet trade. This year was extra special for us as we presented a well-received seminar about our retail journey and also picked up a national award. It was also great to meet up with old friends and establish new contacts. We would highly recommend the event to others in the pet industry.”

Certain dog ear infection can spread

Ear infections are one of the most common diseases of dogs and are often associated with allergies caused by both pollens and molds and even food. In many cases, we consider these to be non-transferable or infectious; that is, a housemate isn’t likely to get an ear infection from another dog in the home.

However, some research by specialists at Texas A&M University has found that ear infections caused by the bacteria Pseudomonas are acquired by different means and may pose a risk to housemates of both the two-legged and four-legged variety.

The Texas study found that the same Pseudomonas bacteria isolated from the ears of an infected dog often was found in the oral cavity of the people and other pets in the same home. Additionally, a 64 percent increase of prevalence was noted for dogs that had recently visited a dog park or swimming pool.

What does this mean to pet owners who have had a dog recently diagnosed with a Pseudomonas infection? First, unlike the more common ear infections, this one may be spread to other members of the household — pets and people.

Good sanitation is advised to prevent the spread of this bacteria. You should not share ear cleaner bottles or medications with other family pets. Water is conducive to the growth of this infection, so activities that include pool play or water toys should be avoided for pets suffering from a Pseudomonas infection. Trips to the dog park may be best avoided with an active infection.

Above all, closely follow the advice of your veterinarian as this bug can be resistant to many antibiotics and be especially difficult to cure. For more information on protecting your pets and family from future infections, check with your veterinarian.

Source: US Quad City Times
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