Archive for the ‘Haven Vet Group’ Category

New Veterinary Specific Equine Calmer

Fireworks can be worrying for all animals, including horses. We are now stocking a new veterinary specific calming supplement which can be beneficial for a number of scenarios including helping to settle some horses during firework season. If you are interested in finding out more, please contact our vets for advice on 01482 898301 Opt.1












How to create a ‘Pet Den’

How to create a ‘Pet Den’

The pet den is by far one of most useful tools when it comes to managing phobias and anxieties and is very simple to create for any pet. This needs to be an area where your pet feels relaxed and secure. Maybe there’s already somewhere your pet naturally gravitates to when feeling threatened or unsure. Make this space as cosy and comfortable as you can to encourage your pet to use it by giving treats, toys or feeding in this area. If there’s no existing area where your pet likes to go, create one! Use a bed or pet crate and fill it with soft blankets and cushions. Place your pet’s favourite toy in there, along with drinking water. Ideally the crate should go under a table or a bed – somewhere slightly concealed from view – but if that’s not possible, place it in a corner or against a wall and cover it with a blanket or bedsheet to provide some privacy and reduce some of the noise disturbance. The darker and quieter, the better.


To make the den even more inviting, spray it with a pheromone spray like, Adaptil (for dogs) or Feliway (for cats) to help promote feelings of calm and contentment. These products also come as plug-in-style room diffusers and have a similar effect. Pet Remedy has blends of essential oils which help calm the nerves of pets affected by firework fear. This includes rabbits, birds and other pets too.  (NB: There are other brands of anti-anxiety therapies available too.) When it comes to creating a den, the sooner you do it, the better. Your pet needs a chance to get used to the area and accept it as a safe place. Make sure the den is accessible at all times so your pet can visit it even when you’re not at home.


Fireworks & Pets

Supporting your pet through the fireworks season

With fireworks season seeming to last from the end of October right through to New Year and beyond, it is important to provide your pet with supportive adjustments that don’t cost the earth and once put into place, can be used each year to manage anxieties.

Follow these helpful tips to support your pet and consider attending a ‘Nervous Nellies’ clinic in one of our branches, to learn how you can help to desensitise your pet to scary sounds ready for next year’s festivities.

Be prepared!

  • Before fireworks season begins, get your pet microchipped and, if they already are, check your contact details are up to date. This is really important as it gives you the best chance of being reunited with your pet if they become spooked and accidently get lost amid the bangs and crashes.
  • Speak to your vet or nurse about pheromone treatments and herbal anti-anxiety supplements. They need to be started at least a week before fireworks as they need time to build up. They should be continued right through the season until about two weeks after all fireworks have finished. These treatments/supplements can help your pet to feel less anxious but will not sedate
  • Make sure your pet stays inside at night during firework season. Check the dates and times of local displays so you know when to keep your pet in. If you have a dog, make sure you take them out before it gets dark, in plenty of time before the fireworks start. If you have a cat, provide a litter tray indoors.
  • Block off pet flaps to stop them from getting outside and to help muffle the sound of bangs and zips.
  • You can help to block out the noise of fireworks by switching on the TV or radio, if your pet is already used to the sound, but make sure it’s not too loud or you may hurt your pet’s ears.
  • Close the curtains or black out the windows as it will help to block out the sight of bright flashes, which may scare your pet.

During the event

  • Let your pet pace around freely inside your home or hide if they want to. Provide a safe place (see our page on ‘how to create a pet den’), so your pet can choose to hide in it or stay by your side. Don’t try to coax your pet/s out of hiding places unless they are in immediate danger – they are trying to find a safe place and shouldn’t be disturbed.
  • Although it’s difficult when it’s obvious your pet is stressed, try to act calm and casual and do things in the house as normal. Calm behaviour reassures your pet that there is nothing to be afraid of, a bit like when your pet first heard a noisy hoover or washing machine. Keep your pet busy indoors – play games or enjoy some reward-based training to keep their mind off the noises, if they aren’t hiding.
  • Avoid leaving your pet alone during such potentially upsetting events, especially during the week around Bonfire Night. If you do have to leave the house, don’t get angry with your pet if they have toileted in the house after being left on their own. Shouting at an already frightened pet will only make them more stressed.

After it’s all over

  • When the fireworks have finished, continue to allow your pet access to their ‘safe place’ and continue any anti-anxiety supplements for at least two weeks following the end of fireworks season.
  • Prepare for next season by visiting or speak to your vet or nurse for helpful advice on how to desensitise your pet to scary sounds. Desensitisation is the only way to prevent your pet reacting to fireworks in the future and it is simple to do. Desensitisation can take time to complete, so won’t be achievable for this year’s firework season, but it is possible to achieve for next year, if started before next August.

Don’t forget….bunnies and other small pets need to be considered during firework season too!


Remember, remember your pets in November !

Remember, remember your pets in November……we know that #BonfireNight can be great fun, but when it comes to our pets, we also know Guy Fawkes has a lot to answer for!  We’ll be sharing tips on our Facebook page during October of things you can do to help your pet feeling safe.

  • Walk your dog early in the evening and bring your cat indoors before dark.

  • Feed your pet earlier in the day (before fireworks are likely to begin).  Once loud noises have started, your pet may become unsettled and not want to eat.

  • Never force your dog to go outside when fireworks are going off.  If they are happy to venture out, make sure that your garden is secure to prevent an escape in the event of sudden panic.

  • The best way to prepare for fireworks is to think like a dog.  They feel scared as they are alarmed by the loud noises of fireworks, but do not understand that fireworks cannot harm them, so feel safer when they have a hiding space.  You can make your dog a ‘dog den’.  Have a look on the internet for examples or ideas.  We will be re-creating one in our Reception so pop in and have a look.

  • Keep windows and doors closed to minimise noise and draw your curtains to reduce flash and bright lights.  This will also help to reduce escape attempts!  It’s also a good idea to switch the radio on as a distraction.

Lastly not forgetting our pets that live outside, partly cover cages, pens and aviaries with blankets so that one area is well sound-proofed, but make sure your pet can still look out.  Also provide lots of extra bedding for them to burrow in.

If your pet is frightened by loud noises, don’t ignore the problem.  You should always seek advice from your vet.  We have a variety of products available such as pheromone diffusers and suppliments to help calm your pet, we also have leaflets and ask about our sound desensitising CD.

Equine Grass Sickness

As you get ready to turn your horses out to grass we thought it would be useful to give you some information on this disease.

Equine grass sickness is a life-threatening disease affecting the horse’s nervous system and intestinal tract. It is particularly prevalent in the UK. Grass sickness relates to signs of the degeneration of the nerves of the autonomic nervous system. There are two types:

Acute grass sickness this happens suddenly, results in dullness, dropped eyelids, muscle tremoring, and reduced intestinal motility showing as colic. This type of grass sickness is not curable.

Chronic grass sickness can take longer to show, signs include the inability to swallow properly (dysphagia), oesophageal obstruction (sometimes referred to as choke), impaction colic, dry, pelleted faecal balls (sometimes wrapped in dried mucus), dropped eyelids, muscle tremoring, an elevated temperature or heart rate and dullness.No cause for this disease has been identified yet despite numerous theories. Please ring us on 01482 898301, Opt 1 for more information.

Hedon Branch Saturday Closure


Saturday 25th May will be the last time that the Hedon practice is open on a Saturday morning. Appointments will still be available for your pet at the Holderness Road practice which is open from 9am – 4pm. Products such as flea and worm treatment will also be available to collect from the Holderness Road practice as well as repeat medication, providing it has been pre ordered.

We would like to apologise for any inconvenience that this may cause. We feel that we can provide a better service for you and your pet from the Holderness Road practice due to a Veterinary Surgeon and Veterinary Nurse being on site along with a Receptionist. This enables us to perform diagnostic tests and surgical procedures if necessary.

If you have any queries, please speak to the client care team who will be happy to answer any questions.
Thank you.

Nurse Clinics by Lucy Hartlebury-Forman

Nurse Clinics

If you have ever attended one of our veterinary practices, you may have noticed a network of support staff working alongside the veterinary surgeons.  A vital part of this support network are veterinary nurses who perform many roles within the practice, such as:-

  • professional care givers
  • anaesthetists
  • lab technicians and
  • radiographers, just to name but a few.

Another very important role is client and patient support which is offered through our nurse clinics.

Nurse clinics are run by our qualified nurses who can perform procedures such as:-

  • Nail clips
  • Anal gland expression
  • Ear cleaning
  • Dental hygiene demonstrations
  • 2nd vaccinations

They also offer advice and support to pet owners on specific topics such as:-

  • Puppy and kitten advice
  • Senior pet advice
  • Nervousness and anxiety issues
  • Rabbit care advice
  • Weight clinics

Weight clinics allow our nurses to offer help and support to clients who wish to help their pet achieve a healthy body weight and size, reducing the risk of diabetes, arthritis ad heart problems.  The initial consultation, which often takes 20-30 minutes, enables the nurse to take measurements from the neck, chest and waist and check the pet’s current weight and body condition score.

The ideal body weight and body condition score are discussed and agreed and from this information, the nurse can then create a plan suitable for the clients to follow at home.  The client and pet are then invited to attend a weight clinics monthly in order to monitor any weight gain or loss, and the advice and support are altered to offer the best possible outcome for the pet.  These clinics are FREE.


There are a wide range of weight reducing/gaining/maintenance diets as well as feeding equipment to assist with weight monitoring and gentle exercise should be encouraged within the household.  We also stock low calorie dog treats for those owners who still like to treat their beloved pet whilst keeping up a balanced weight loss diet.

For more information or to book in or a nurse clinic, please contact your nearest practice.

Hedon 01482 898301

Holderness Road 01482 376477


Canine Arthritis by Laura Clubley

Canine Arthritis

As winter approaches we are more likely to see signs of arthritic changes in our pets, mainly due to the British weather! Four out of five older dogs will suffer with arthritis.

These signs include slowing down on walks, becoming less enthusiastic or struggling to get up and down easily. Showing signs of stiffness, lameness, an arched back or squatting differently or whilst moving. These change of behaviours will most often be seen at home, not on an ‘exciting’ walk.

Factors which make this worse include:

  • Cold damp weather
  • Draughts
  • Overweight (overweight dogs are more likely to develop arthritis earlier)
  • Muscle loss
  • Uneven or slippery surfaces

Arthritis management must be combination of solutions to be effective. This includes veterinary based treatments and medications, but also changes at home:

  • Pain Management – starting with a consult/ health check, your pet may benefit from anti-inflammatory medications


  • Weight management – Free nurse clinics are available to book most weekday afternoons (A 5-10% loss in bodyweight leads to significantly improved symptoms – the same as starting a pain relief medication)


  • Diet/ Supplements – EPA (Eicosopentanoic Acid) reduces cartilage damage helping the joint surface – found in prescription diets or in Green lipped mussel extract eg Yumove Advance (10% discount with senior pet clinic)


  • Exercise Management – Regular exercise within your dog’s capabilities is beneficial to maintain muscle mass and strength (but take time to build up distance/ inclines)


  • Keep warm and out of draughts – Raised/padded pet bed, dry your dog’s legs after a walk, use a dog coat to keep them warm and dry


  • Environment Management – Use carpet runners on slippery floors, ramps and smaller stairs for large steps or the car, avoid unsupervised use of the stairs


  • Physiotherapy/ Water walker – Aim to maintain and strengthen muscles to help protect joints and counterbalance joint stiffness/ fibrosis. Also to increase your pet’s mobility and range of joint movements. Exercises can be done at home or at a specialist centre.



CAM – Canine Arthritis also found on Facebook + Twitter

Final Stages of Holderness Road Refurbishment

We are now in the final stages of the major refurbishment of our Holderness Road branch because we want to give your pets the best possible care.  We’d like to thank all of our customers for their patience during this time and  Jim would also like to invite you to our Open Day on Sunday 30th September.  Look out for details coming shortly.

Meanwhile here are some photos of our new look reception with dedicated cat waiting area.  We are almost there, phew !

Jordan Sinclair – 3 Months at Haven Vet Group

Hello, I’m Jordan – one of the new(ish) vets at Haven. I graduated from the University of Glasgow in 2017 and joined the Haven team in March after spending 6 months in mixed practice on my home turf in Leicestershire. Throughout university, I had the opportunity to spend some time abroad gaining experience in various disciplines of veterinary, including wildlife medicine in South Africa, a charity neutering clinic for street dogs in India and, most recently, I spent a month in Morocco at an equine hospital caring for the working donkeys, mules and horses of Fez.



My family has a small farm in Leicester, which is home to a variety of animals with the most recent addition being a cheeky Shetland foal. Before university I was a keen showjumper and continued the competitive streak through my studies as part of the university riding teams. Now I ride when I can and also enjoy cycling, having recently started a velodrome accreditation course.


I’m particularly interested in internal medicine but am keen to get involved in all aspects of small animal and equine practice. Since I began working at Haven, I feel very much welcomed into the team. Every vet is friendly, approachable and keen to teach. I never have to worry about not being able to get help if I’m stuck and all of the vets are happy to support me through the challenges of being a recently graduated vet. This has made it a great environment to learn in and gain confidence in myself after having a bit of a rough start to my career as a vet. I’m so thankful to my colleagues for that and am excited to continue working at Haven and seeing more of beautiful Yorkshire.