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Alexandra and Hillyfields Vets Ltd
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What to do if your pet shows symptoms of heatstroke.

1. Move him or her to a cool area (preferably with air conditioning or a fan to cool them off) heat-stroke
2. Assess your pet’s condition:
Can he/she stand? Is he/she panting normally?
If yes, keep inside and offer water little and often and call the surgery for advice.
If your pet is showing any of the following signs
• panting excessively, especially dogs?
• Staggering/collapsing when trying to move?
• Have dark red gums?
• Vomiting and/or diarrhoea?
• Have a rapid heart/pulse rate?
• Unable to stand up?
• Disorientated or out of sorts?
• Unresponsive to voice, touch or sight?
• Having convulsions?
• Completely collapsed or unconscious?
Call the vet immediately and get your pet to the veterinary practice as quickly as possible. You can begin the cooling process by soaking his/her body with cool (not cold) water. Wet towels that have been soaked in water are great for this.
If you are concerned that your dog may have heatstroke and want advice please contact our surgery or our out-of-hours provider, Vets Now on 0117 971 3111.
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Many people still believe that it’s ok to leave a dog in a car on a warm day if the windows are left open or they’re parked in the shade, but the truth is, it’s still a very dangerous situation for the dog.
A car can become as hot as an oven very quickly, even when it doesn’t feel that warm. When it’s 22 degrees, in a car it can reach an unbearable 47 degrees within the hour.

Never leave your dog alone in a car on a warm day. If you see a dog in distress in a hot car, dial 999.
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Did you know that a female cat continues to 'call' until she is mated! It is only when she is mated, that she releases her eggs - hence why cats are so good at getting pregnant.
The shelters currently are full (and overflowing) of cats and kittens so please consider speying and neutering your cats.
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Ferrets (Mustela putorius furo) belong to the carnivore family of the Mustelidae. Despite their rather misunderstood nature, they have recently become very popular pets for their charming and cheeky characters. Ferrets are domesticated animals. Their most likely wild ancestors are the European polecat and the Steppe polecat.
Ferrets enjoy exploring and are very curious so they will test out most items with their mouths.
Ferrets are sociable. Domestic ferrets are sociable and usually enjoy living in groups, although this does depend on the individual animals.
A healthy ferret may sleep between 18 and 20 hours a day.
Ferrets use a range of methods to communicate. As well as using smell to hunt, ferrets use scent to communicate with each other. Ferrets also use postures and vocalisations to indicate how they’re feeling.
If well taken care of, healthy ferrets can live up to 10 years of age. However, their average lifespan is approximately 6 years.
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Why do I need to fast my pet before an operation?

Fasting - which is not eating, drinking or chewing anything for a set period of time - is part of every safe anaesthetic technique in most animals and also in humans. It is performed to improve the safety of the patient whilst undergoing general anesthesia. When your pet is given a general anaesthetic many of the normal reflexes of the body are lost. One of these is the one that keeps food in the stomach and prevents it coming back up and into the lungs - or "going down the wrong way" as it is commonly known. When your pet experiences this in the normal state the body can cough and protect the lungs from food and fluid going down. Under anaesthesia this does not occur to the same degree and the consequences of food going into the lungs can be very severe.

Some species of pets do not need to be fasted - rabbits especially need to have constant food intake - and we often ask owners to bring in their normal food so they can nibble up until the time of their operation!

What about emergencies when my pet has not fasted?

Good question. When your pet has not fasted and there is an urgent need to perform surgery the anaesthetic technique can be modified to minimise the risks associated with not fasting. As this is a less satisfactory option than adequate fasting it will be up to your veterinary surgeon to decide whether the urgency of the operation outweighs the increased risk of inadequate fasting.
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Helping A Dog in a Hot Car

• Establish the animal's health/condition. If they're displaying any signs of heatstroke such as panting heavily; drooling excessively; appear lethargic, drowsy or uncoordinated; collapsed or vomiting - dial 999 Immediately.

• If the situation becomes critical for the dog and the police are too far away/unable to attend, many people’s instinct will be to break into the car to free the dog.

If you decide to do this, please be aware that without proper justification, this could be classed as criminal damage and, potentially, you may need to defend your actions in court.

• Make sure you tell the police what you intend to do, why, and take images/footage of the dog and the names and numbers of witnesses to the incident.

The law states that you have a lawful excuse to commit damage if you believe that the owner of the property that you damage would consent to the damage if they knew the circumstances (section 5(2)(a) Criminal Damage Act 1971).

For the best chance of survival, dogs suffering from heatstroke urgently need to have their body temperature lowered gradually.

• Move him/her to a shaded/cool area.

• Immediately douse the dog with cool (not cold) water, to avoid shock. If possible, you can also use wet towels or place him/her in the breeze of a fan.

• Allow the dog to drink small amounts of cool water.

• Continue to douse the dog with cool water until his/her breathing starts to settle but never so much that he/she begins to shiver.

Please seek veterinary attention as soon as possible.
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Hot offer until the end of July.

Are you worming your pets at least 4 times a year?
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Please check your rabbits daily for wounds or dirty bottoms over the next few months. And check your rabbit daily has shade and fresh water, maybe topping up the water and moving the run if it is a hot day.

Rabbits don't tolerate heat well and can die from heat stroke. Always keep an eye on your rabbit, especially during the heat of summer.
Early signs that your rabbit is suffering from heat stress include lethargy, panting and dehydration. Signs of heat stroke include unresponsiveness, being uncoordinated and convulsions. If you suspect heat stroke, dampen his ears and body with cool water, but DO NOT submerge him in cold water as this can cause shock.

Fly strike (maggot infestation) can kill a healthy animal who has temporary loose stools, urinary problems or an open sore very quickly. Especially at risk are disabled, overweight or aging bunnies who are unable to clean themselves. Flies seek to lay their eggs in warm, moist areas and are drawn to the odor of fur dampened with urine and feces. The damage they cause goes beyond the surface as they burrow into the rabbit's flesh releasing toxins that can cause lethal shock very quickly.

If you suspect fly strike or heat stroke, get your rabbit to a veterinary surgery immediately.
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To improve client (human) care, staff members at both surgeries have undertaken a First Aid course on the weekend. It was an interesting and informative day, but something that we hope we don't have to use in the future on our clients. Of course our veterinary qualifications mean that we are able to happily continue to treat your pets!
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We love our pets – but we don’t always show our love by taking care of our pets’ needs.

New figures on vaccination published by the PDSA back up research carried out on behalf of the National Office of Animal Health(NOAH) – while the UK is full of devoted pet lovers, half of us forget about one of the best ways we can help our pet, vaccinating them against preventable infectious diseases.

The PDSA says: “More than 11 million pets could die prematurely in the next decade from devastating preventable illnesses such as parvovirus, feline leukaemia and certain forms of cancer because their owners are failing to vaccinate or neuter them.” Yet these are the same pets that we talk to, sing to and dance with – that 33% of owners would sleep next to if they were ill, and 40% would risk their own lives to save.

NOAH agrees with PDSA Senior Vet Sean Wensley who said that ‘Love by itself is not enough’.

NOAH itself had commissioned two detailed surveys which compared the attitudes of those pet owners who did routinely prevent disease (preventers) with those who did not (non-preventers). Attitudes to vaccination did not change between the 2007 and 2010 surveys, with preventers believing that being a responsible pet owner means regularly vaccinating your pet, while non-preventers just not believing vaccination was relevant to their situation. This pointed to a clear need to educate non-preventers to break habits that have sometimes been handed down from generation to generation.

“Perhaps to some extent vaccination has been a victim of its own success, with many owners not seeing the infectious diseases that vaccines prevent in their pets or the pets of their friends,” comments NOAH technical executive and veterinary surgeon Donal Murphy.

“Yet once the level of vaccination in the population drops, the disease incidence starts to rise. “Killer diseases have not gone away. They have only been kept in check by responsible pet owners who maintain their animal’s vaccination programmes. “The cat belonging to the new family in the street, or the stray dog in the park, may be harbouring disease, which can attack when a pet is not fully protected. Unvaccinated pets are vulnerable to devastating – and sometimes incurable – disease,” he says.
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Contact Information
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Hillyfields Way Winscombe, Somerset BS25 1AE United Kingdom
Hillyfields WayGBSomersetWinscombeBS25 1AE
+44 1934
VeterinarianToday 8:30 am – 6:00 pm
Monday 8:30 am – 6:00 pmTuesday 8:30 am – 6:00 pmWednesday 8:30 am – 6:00 pmThursday 8:30 am – 6:00 pmFriday 8:30 am – 6:00 pmSaturday 8:30 am – 1:30 pmSunday Closed


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"At last I have found a Vet practice I am happy with."
"Hillyfields vets have always offered an efficient, caring and personal service."
"Recent urgent care required by our dog was instant and exceptional."
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All reviews
Rebecca Robinson
a month ago
At last I have found a Vet practice I am happy with. I don't have to wait in crowded waiting room. The consultations are long so we are not rushed. Rob has taken time and patience to get to know my fearful dog and now my dog can be examined and be more relaxed. And they prescribe wormers and flea treatments in yummy treat form so no problems with those any more. And lots of love and TLC for my other dog, a big, bouncy, bull breed too. I highly recommend Hillyfields.
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Edna Bamber
3 months ago
I first registered my rescue cat, Vicky, in 2003 with the previous owners of the practice. Since then I have had three more rescue cats all treated by Tim, Rob and Charmaine. They have each in their own right had some complicated medical conditions, and have been treated by all the Vets with the loving care and attention. There has never been anything which has been too much trouble for them or their nursing staff and always treated my cats with tender loving care. I only have one cat at the moment, and whilst the Vets were trying to rehome her they found she had a rare type of diabetes. She regularly visits the practice for check-ups, she is an adorable cat and I'm so pleased we all agreed that I would giver her a new home. I frequently recommend this Practice to my friends, they are excellent.
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Elemental Power
a month ago
Hillyfields vets have always offered an efficient, caring and personal service. Recent urgent care required by our dog was instant and exceptional.
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Leigh Lomax
9 months ago
They are friendly and provide quick services. Although they are happy to take your money for procedures and vaccinations, they charge 50 pounds to write a simple letter indicating they have served as your pets' vet. This is something that should be a 'given' for people who have paid in nearly 1000 pounds within the last 6 months. I would not use them again.
Response from the owner - 7 months ago
Hello Leigh, I am really pleased that you found my team friendly and our services efficient. Although, we would love to provide routine procedures and life-saving vaccines for free, as a business, we do have to charge for this type of service. The letter you mention was to certify your pet's health, prior to her export procedures. When talking to you on the phone, I did stress that it was not possible to certify an animal without first examining it; I offered to write the letter using the date Ruby was last seen at our practice but you declined this. Please consider that, as a vet, it is a great responsibility to certify an animals health and as such we feel this is a fair price for our services. I would remind you that we did previously waive the fee for Ruby's kennel cough vaccination as a goodwill gesture. Finally, the services you required for Ruby and Maggie this year, including their yearly vaccinations, neutering procedures, rabies vaccines, passports and other treatment totalled about half the figure that you stated. We are sorry you feel this way and that you do not plan to return in the future. We shall now make a conscious effort to more fully explain the nature and cost of our services to clients in the future. If you would like to discuss this issue any further please email the practice with your contact number and we will be in touch straight away. Best wishes, Rob
Russ Martin
2 months ago
Great vets. They go over and above for the animals. I have one cat who would certainly be dead without their help. Finn was very ill with a mystery illness. It took months but they helped keep him alive, they got to the root of the problem and gave a fix. Finn is now a well and happy cat. This is but one example of the extra care they give. Don't moan about not being cheap? What vet is? These guys are great.
Christopher Jennings
4 months ago
We have always found the practice very efficient and friendly. Quite recently our oldest cat was diagnosed with a urine infection and blood tests reveled early stages of renal failure. After antibiotics she recovered well from the infection and is now undergoing a course of treatment which will hopefully give her quality of life for her remaining years. The practice is a very pleasant and cheerful place to visit and everything is clearly explained by the vets and nurses.
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Zoe Hughes
a week ago
All the staff are very friendly and it's obvious they love what they do. I like going there even if my cat does not appreciate it.