One of the most experienced veterinary specialists in India, Dr SB Mathur is running a successful practice in Aliganj, Lucknow
Your pet also needs time to adjust to new surroundings
Q: We have shifted to a new house recently. My dog does not like the change and has stopped playing like it used to. We are also having a hard time house training him as he is finding it difficult to poop in the new 'terrain'. What should we do? Amita Seth
Contrary to the belief, animals take much longer to adjust in a new environment. By what you say, I assume that you have a grown up dog. Give him some time to find his bearing. He must have been attached to his earlier set- up and is sad at having to leave it. You must treat him with a lot of affection and do not start chiding him unnecessarily. As soon as he gets accustomed to his new home, he will fall back to him old routine and start behaving normally.
Q: My uncle and we live in separate apartments in the same building. My uncle has a Labrador who he brings over to our place often. However, for sometime now, the dog starts scratching his ears whenever he is at our home. We find this disgusting. But my uncle says his dog does not do so at his home. How can this be possible? Vibha Shukla
Since your uncle insists that his dog does not normally scratch himself at his home, it can be the dog is allergic to something in your home-- say a carpet, or floor cleaner, or some room freshener you might be using. Like us humans, animals are also allergic to the scents or fabrics or even some pollen-laden, dusty environment. This can well explain this dog's unusual behaviour. However, it can also be that the pet might be scratching himself at his master’s home as well but your uncle might just not have noticed it. In that case, the pet might be suffering from some skin allergy or ear infection. He might even be suffering from a tick problem. My advice to you would be to take this dog to a vet & get his checked.
Q: My Spitz had injured her paw when she was a puppy. Though she is 2-year-old now, she started limping on that very paw. Can she have fractured her paw? Is there a treatment? Kamal Kumar
It is highly unlikely that your pet had fractured her paw, as a puppy's paws are very flexible and do not contain bones but cartilage that does not break. However she could have hurt herself badly. You have not mentioned how she had got injured, so there is no way to gauge the extent of injury. Anyway two years have passed and your pet has started limping only now. Please take her to a good vet. Chances are she could have injured her paw again or there might be some infection on the instep.
Q: I wish to adopt an indie puppy. Is it fine to adopt it, from the road I mean? Ratnesh
It is never a problem to adopt an indie puppy as it will make an excellent pet and guard dog. It is mostly very easy to keep such dogs as they have great immune system and are quite hardy. But genes do play an important role. If you are bringing the puppy of a mongrel, please take it to a vet first and get it checked properly. Vaccinations are a must. Besides you should ensure that the puppy's mother is not suffering from any disease and how many from the litter have survived naturally. If you have an idea of the father it would be a good thing because the mongrel could even be carrying the litter of a pure bred. But it is very difficult to ascertain and only a qualified vet can tell.