One of the most experienced veterinary specialists in India, Dr SB Mathur is running a successful practice in Lucknow
Q: I have a couple of years old Labrador who keeps scratching his ears. Sometimes the ears turn red. Is there any ear drop or cream that I can apply? Sameer Kaul
You have to take your dog to a vet because it can be suffering from either an allergic infection or some infestation and it would be advisable to let an authorised person take a look at its ears and decide the course of right treatment. If untreated allergic infections can reach the ear drums and turn serious. If it is a tick infestation, then too proper treatment would be required as ears are sensitive areas. In both cases, the vet would prescribe medicine to apply on the affected area as well as oral ones or even give injections for quicker relief. It is neither a lengthy nor very expensive treatment, so my advice would be to visit the vet. In the meantime, you might clean the ears with Savlon and apply a little Betadine but these are temporary measures. Do not ignore his pain because your pet may even cause a wound by continuous and vigorous scratching.
Q: I wish to adopt a couple of kittens. I would be keeping Indie breed to cats of- course but I wish to know if kittens can be house trained like the dogs? Dr Seema Kushwaha
Yes, kittens can be house trained as well. Cats by nature are very clean creatures and groom themselves regularly. They also do not like to live in dirty surroundings. If you have a small non-cemented lawn then your kittens would soon learn to dig a small pit, relieve themselves in that and then cover it cleverly with mud. If you live in a flat or do not wish to have your lawn dug up, there are kitten litter boxes that are available in the market and on online stores. They are like cats' personalised toilet but the kittens will have to be trained to use that. Also, you have to clean theses boxes as soon as either one of your kittens uses them as cats don't reuse or visit dirty toilets.
Q: My friend wants me to gift her laal muniya birds. Where can I purchase them from? What care and diet do they require? Naseem
It is not only illegal but highly insensitive to keep birds in cage. I cannot suggest from where you can buy them from as I do not advice giving such a gift. You can gift a puppy or a kitten if she wishes to keep a pet. Little birds are caught from their natural habitat in the most inhumane fashion. Many of them may be separated from their mates or even their young ones. They may look little but might even be nearing their old age. The catcher, all of them illegal, do not take any care which may even cause injuries in the birds. They are jampacked into small cages and do not drink water or eat anything due to fright. Their heart beats are raised to the extent that many die in the cage on the same day they are caught. When someone is purchasing them, how does he know if the birds being given are diseased or injured or even on the verge of a heart attack? As a result, they do not survive for long. And please do not believe they take away the evil if they die, the only thing they take with them is bad memory. I am sure neither you nor your friend would want to do that.