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We're not all right, Jack.

Byline: Scott Miller

Q

My daughter and I have re-homed a four-year-old Jack Russell terrier-cross bitch. She lived with an elderly couple and her mother until the older dog started attacking her. She was kept in the house during the day and a shed at night. When we take her for walk, she is fine on a lead and harness but when we meet another person or dog she wants to attack and is so nervous.

A

This is one tall order. Living in such extreme circumstances of aggression and isolation would make anyone nervous. Your dog is suffering from extremely poor social skills. She is understandably nervous of other dogs considering her past and, as she was owned by an elderly couple, likely didn't socialise with too many people either.

This will be a slow process but, given time and bucketfuls of patience and understanding from you, she may improve. She will never be the most sociable or easy-going dog so this problem is something you should invest in from the start. Consider instructing the services of a specialist animal behaviourist via your vet to help you better understand your dog's neurosis, working together for a brighter, more sociable future.

Q

I wanted to pass on advice which may help other readers. I have an old German Shepherd called Bailey who has a bit of arthritis and sore joints. Our vet prescribed Metacam and what a difference it has made. He is still slower than he used to be but can once again jump into the back of the car, run down the stairs and go for long walks.

A

Thanks for your feedback. Metacam is a common anti-inflammatory used by us vets. It is great in a liquid form and is honey-flavoured so is well-received by dogs when mixed with their foods. Used as a once-daily medication, it helps short-term pain, for example post-surgery, as well as chronically painful conditions such arthritis.

Q

I want to buy a Tibetan Spaniel. Can you tell me of any breeders in Scotland because I don't know where to start looking?

A

The Scottish Kennel Club is always the best place to begin this kind of search. Visit their website at www.scottishkennelclub.org or give them a call on 0131 665 3920. And don't forget to send me a picture when you finally get your new ball of fur.

Call to all animal charities - get in touch! With 2011 in full swing, I always love hearing about the wonderful events taking place across Scotland, especially where animals are concerned. So if you are organising a fundraiser to help support an amazing animal charity this year, please write in and tell me about it and I will do my best to publicise it on this very page.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Feb 13, 2011
Words:465
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