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It’s grey and damp in London atm and everywhere I look there is mud. I find myself scanning the weather forecasts looking for the next cold spell ( middle of next week apparently, if anyone is interested) but I’m what I’m really thinking about is summer, and where we are going on holiday.

A lot of people take their pets, especially dogs, on holiday with them but not us. We have 4 children and don’t feel able to cope with the added stress that a couple of canines would involve. Besides, there would be no room for luggage in the car!
But even if you are not taking your pets away with you, please don’t forget them in your holiday preparations. As soon as you have your dates booked, ring the kennels, cattery, pet or home sitter or check with the neighbour/friend who usually feeds them. Check their vaccinations are up to date and start tweaking their flea/worming schedule so they won’t be due for a treatment while you are away. If your pet is microchipped, make sure the address the company has is up to date and if your pet isn’t chipped, consider having it done. If you have no idea who your pet’s chip is registered with, talk to your vet, they will be able to scan your pet and tell you which company you should be registered with.
If your pet is travelling with you, you need to check their vaccinations and passport ( if required) are all up to date. And having the correct address recorded against their microchip is obviously vitally important when they are away from home. Also do some research and write down the details of the closest vet to where you will be staying, just in case.
Sorting these details out now, and making a record of what you’ve organised will save you from panicking about pet-care closer to holiday time. You’ll be able to spend your time stressing about packing and your passports instead!

Every week, someone contacts me to check if anyone has handed in a stray dog/cat/rabbit/bird or to tell me they have found a stray animal. Because I don’t have a surgery, I can’t take in lost pets, so refer them to one of the local rescues but I do write down their details and keep them to hand, just in case.

Last week, ‘just in case’ happened. A lady rang to say they had found a young black cat in a certain area, then just an hour later someone else rang to say they had found one. So I gave the loser the finders number and a family got their much-loved pet back. They had just moved house and the cat escaped and was last seen high tailing it over the garden fence. She wandered into a house that backed onto her own garden and made herself at home. They were very lucky as the cat wasn’t wearing a collar and wasn’t micro-chipped.
Every year, thousands of pets aren’t as fortunate and end up in rescue centres looking for new homes, or even end up being put to sleep, because there is no way of reuniting them with their owners.
By law, dogs must wear an identification tag on their collar if they are in public. People put a combination of their pet’s names, their address, and phone number. My dogs simply wear a phone number on the basis I’d rather no one knew their name if they were stolen. Tags are available on line from the Kennel Club site or from most pet shops.
Cats can wear a tag as well, if they will tolerate a collar but the best method of identification for all pets ( including dogs) is a microchip.
June is National Microchipping Month and many Vet Clinics are offering discounted microchipping to encourage people to make sure their pets are permanently identified. Check here to see if there is an event near you.
The Visiting Vet is offering Microchipping for just £10 with any vaccination for the month of June.
Please phone, email or text me if you’d like to take up this offer.