Mount Pleasant Pet News 2019

Mount Pleasant Pet News is our quarterly newsletter sharing articles on various medical conditions, new programmes, events and updates. Download soft copies below or pick up your free copy at any of our 9 clinics.

We welcome medical stories of your animal friends to educate and inspire others. Email us at comms@mountpleasant.com.sg and be part of Mount Pleasant community over at our Website and Facebook.


jan to mar 2019

Click to read => Mount Pleasant Pet News Jan-Mar 2019

  • Intraluminal Tracheal Stent
  • Ingestion Of Foreign Bodies
  • Parrot Care
  • Limb Amputation
  • Cataracts In Dogs
  • Veterinary Acupuncture
  • Respiratory Diseases In Rabbits
  • Mount Pleasant Gives Back

More articles at:
Pleasant Pet News 2018
Pleasant Pet News 2017

Pleasant Pet News 2016

Advertisements

“What Did Your Dog Eat?” – Ingestion Of Foreign Bodies

Some dogs are known to gobble random objects off the ground. Bones, sticks, toys. And unexpected items like needles, tape, coins, socks. Small foreign bodies can pass through but others become lodged along the gastrointestinal tract. These dogs had the FB retrieved with the use of a flexible endoscope or surgical abdominal exploration. They are doing well because their families sought prompt treatment.

Max is a young curious boy. He was referred to Mount Pleasant (Gelenggang) when his family suspected he had swallowed a needle. He was quiet, retching and refusing food.

After X-ray confirmed location of the object, Max was prepared for endoscopic procedure with Dr Anthony Goh. The needle with thread was successfully retrieved and Max was fit to go home that very day.

Ingestion of Foreign Bodies

Some gastrointestinal foreign objects can cause systemic toxicities, or damage and obstruction to the intestinal tract. Perforation of the intestinal tract quickly leads to inflammation of the abdominal lining, bacteria proliferation and sepsis.

clinical signs

Clinical signs include vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, appetite loss, straining to defecate – depending on type of object, location, duration and degree of obstruction.

Coins successfully retrieved from a small dog by Dr Anthony Goh. An endoscope is a flexible tube with a viewing port and video camera attachment. It is inserted through the mouth to inspect the oesophagus, stomach, intestinal tract.

3 pairs of socks successfully retrieved from a big dog.

treatment

An endoscope is a flexible tube with a viewing port and video camera attachment. It is inserted through the mouth to inspect the oesophagus, stomach, intestinal tract. Endoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure with faster recovery time. If conservative treatment or endoscopy does not provide relief, surgical exploration is required to open the stomach or intestine to remove the objects. Any metabolic illnesses secondary to the obstruction will be treated accordingly.

prevention

Be extra vigilant if your pets are known to be “scavengers”, especially curious little puppies and kittens. Some dogs may require a basket muzzle during walks to keep them from ingesting foreign objects.

CRUZ, a rescued ex-shelter dog, was treated for bronchitis. The small foreign body was an accidental find which he managed to pass out without issue.

BAXTER on the day of surgery with Dr Anthony Goh. Linear foreign body (black tape) was observed from stomach to anus with a severe intussusception (one segment of intestine slips over another) and distension in the jejunum.

Intussusception causes abdominal pain, mechanical obstruction, compromised blood flow, proliferation of bacteria. It requires emergency surgery.

The damaged segment is surgically removed and the two healthy ends sutured together in a procedure called intestinal anastomosis. For the other smaller intussusceptions, precise incisions were made to free the trapped intestines and the foreign body carefully removed.

Baxter with Joel on the day of discharge – all better and ready to go home!

We welcome medical stories of your animal friends to educate and inspire others. Email us at comms@mountpleasant.com.sg and be part of Mount Pleasant community over at our Website and Facebook.

Tracheal Stent Placement & Laryngeal Sacculectomy: Cookie

13-year-old Cookie was referred to our specialist Dr Nathalee Prakash with a history of stertor (noisy breathing), coughing and voice change. She had been admitted to After Hours Emergency for recurring episodes of respiratory distress and cyanosis.

* When there is not enough oxygen being carried to the body by red blood cells, the skin and mucous membranes can turn a bluish or purplish colour. This condition is known as cyanosis. 

Thoracic radiographs showed markedly narrowing of the cervical trachea to the extent of the thoracic inlet. Tracheal collapse syndrome is a debilitating condition common in small breed dogs. Intraluminal tracheal stenting is a minimally invasive procedure that can improve the quality of life for dogs like Cookie with severe TCS.

Cookie had been admitted to After Hours Emergency for recurring episodes of respiratory distress. Intraluminal tracheal stenting is a minimally invasive procedure that can improve the quality of life for dogs with severe TCS.

what is tracheal collapse SYNDROME?

The trachea, or windpipe, is a tube that delivers air to and from the lungs during respiration. There are small rings of cartilage along the tracheal wall to maintain the tube shape and keep the airway open. If the cartilage becomes weak, the tracheal rings flatten, making it difficult for air to get to the lungs. Signs of tracheal collapse include coughing, noisy breathing, exercise intolerance. Some dogs turn cyanotic when stressed or excited.

A self-expanding nitinol tracheal stent was deployed under fluoroscopic guidance to hold Cookie’s trachea open and help her breathe again. Watch fast-motion video below.

After tracheal stent placement by specialist Dr Nathalee Prakash and Dr Anthony Goh, assisted by vet tech Marco, laryngeal sacculectomy was performed by Dr Dennis Choi to help Cookie breathe more easily.

Laryngeal sacculectomy (surgical removal of laryngeal saccules) is often required for dogs experiencing compromised upper airway flow. The soft tissue masses protrude into the airway just in front of the vocal cords and obstruct proper airflow.

Both procedures were successful. Cookie was closely monitored in our hospital for a few days before discharge for home care.

Post-procedural medication included a broad-spectrum antibiotic, corticosteroid, anti-tussive and bronchodilator therapy. One month post-stenting, Cookie is doing well. She coughs when excited and sometimes at night. There is no stertor or episodes of fainting. Cookie continues to enjoy family activities with her sister Baby – bike rides almost every evening!

cookie and her wonderful family – a chance meeting

A meeting purely by chance. About 10 years ago, Cookie ran out of her house on one occasion and was found by Karen’s family. That was how 2 families got to know one another. When Cookie’s family had to relocate and couldn’t take their dogs along, Karen’s family decided to adopt both Cookie and sister Baby.

It is wonderful the 2 closely-bonded sisters can continue to stay together when their first family was relocated, all thanks to big-hearted folks like Karen and family.

“Besides her collapsed trachea, Cookie is generally healthy for her age. We decided to let Cookie go through tracheal stenting so she can live longer. She and Baby are always a part of our family activities. We are glad to find out about this procedure that can help her.” ~ Karen

A family that exercises together stays healthy together! Karen’s family takes Cookie and Baby on bike rides almost every evening. When she is not out and about, Cookie enjoys sitting by the full-length window and watch the world go by. #KeepingFamiliesTogether


Intraluminal tracheal stent placement is a palliative, minimally invasive procedure to restore an obstructed or narrowed tracheal lumen.
  • TCS is common in small breed dogs. These patients usually present with a distinctive honking cough and may show signs of breathing difficulty, cyanosis and fainting episodes during stress.
  • Diagnosis of TCS can be made by chest radiographs but as the collapse is dynamic, fluoroscopy and endoscopic examination may be required in some cases.
  • Management of TCS consists of weight loss, use of harnesses instead of collars to reduce tracheal pressure, limiting exposure to respiratory irritants (e.g. smoke, dust).
  • The stent reduces but does not resolve coughing completely. Concurrent conditions such as bronchial collapse, chronic bronchitis and congestive heart failure should be evaluated and managed to optimise success post-stenting.
  • Intraluminal tracheal stenting can result in rapid and significant improvement of clinical signs in patients with severe TCS. However, it should be considered as a palliative procedure and reserved for dogs who do not respond to medical management.

We welcome medical stories of your animal friends to educate and inspire others. Email us at comms@mountpleasant.com.sg and be part of Mount Pleasant community over at our Website and Facebook.

Kiba Travels Back To Motherland For Life-Saving Surgery

At just 8 months young, Kiba the Shiba Inu was diagnosed with a rare congenital heart defect known as Double-Chambered Right Ventricle. He was experiencing fainting spells almost every day and might not live to celebrate his 2nd birthday. But Juliana and Jonathan would not let that happen. They flew to Japan for open-heart surgery — giving their best friend his best chance at life.


what is Double-Chambered Right Ventricle?

Double-chambered right ventricle (DCRV) is a rare congenital heart defect characterised by abnormal fibromuscular bands or membranes within the right ventricle resulting in an obstruction to blood flow out of the right side of the heart.

This obstruction creates increased outflow pressure and workload for the right side of the heart, leading to thickening of the muscle as well as tricuspid regurgitation (back flow of blood through the tricuspid valves).

DCRV diagnosis and clinical signs

Kiba was 8 months young when he was first referred to veterinary specialist Dr Nathalee Prakash at Mount Pleasant Vet Centre (Gelenggang).

According to Juliana, “Kiba was fainting nearly every day (syncope) from anything that excites him, like daily occurrences of us reaching home. We had to quickly hold him firmly before he got too excited. Usually he would collapse on the floor for a few seconds. When it was a bad episode, he would scream and urinate uncontrollably.”

A full diagnostic work-up including radiography, electrocardiography and echocardiography performed by Dr Nathalee Prakash confirmed the diagnosis of DCRV. Clinical signs include exercise intolerance, coughing, panting and fainting.

medical management associated to poorer prognosis

Kiba was initially managed with medication to improve relaxation of the heart muscle and relieve the outflow obstruction which minimised the fainting episodes. However, medical management was associated to a poorer prognosis and meant he was medication dependent. There are also potential side effects such as slowing of heart rate and lowering of blood pressure. If the condition progresses, patients may develop signs of right-sided heart failure (which include fluid in the abdomen, enlarged liver, poor circulation) with increased risk of sudden cardiac arrest.

“Past publications show that in the small number of patients this condition has been documented in, surgery is the preferred option due to an improved lifespan. Furthermore, in the time leading up to Kiba’s surgery, there was some progression on repeated echocardiography, which gave further support that surgery was the right decision despite the risks involved,” says veterinary specialist Dr Prakash.

rigorous screening and quarantine 

There is no veterinary surgeon in Singapore qualified to perform the open-heart surgery on Kiba. His family thus made the huge decision to travel to Japan where Kiba will be operated on by Dr Masami Uechi of JASMINE Veterinary Cardiovascular Medical Center.

In the months leading up to surgery, Kiba had to fulfill export requirements and also go through rigorous screening to ensure he was a suitable candidate for surgery. Juliana explains, “There is a strict requirement for rabies vaccination and a 6-month quarantine before Kiba could travel to Japan. It was stressful to wait and not be able to do anything to improve his condition.”

 

29 June: Kiba with Dr Nathalee Prakash the day before his flight @kiba.shiba

off to japan for a fighting chance

Juliana and Jonathan had visited JASMINE Center in February to meet the team and view the facilities. “We are very relieved that Kiba is finally on his way for surgery after such a long wait. We have total confidence in Dr Uechi and the JASMINE team.”

30 June: “Heading back to my Motherland.” @kiba.shiba

Because love is about going that extra mile

Meeting new friends in Japan. The family arrived 10 days before the scheduled surgery, giving Kiba’s body time to adapt and reduce the level of stress before the procedure.

dcrv OPEN-HEART SURGERY

The aim of cardiac repair is to surgically remove the abnormal muscle bundles dividing the right ventricle into two cavities.  An incision is made in the right ventricle spanning the region of the defect and the location of the obstruction determined by visual inspection and palpation of the right ventricular wall. The fibromuscular membranes are then excised, taking care to avoid injury to the papillary apparatus of the tricuspid valve.

10 July: Open-heart surgery by Dr Masami Uechi and team went smoothly

11 July: “I’m doing pretty well for Day 1. Woke up in the middle of the night with a few drama screams. The surgeons took care of me and I slept through till morning.” @kiba.shiba

Kiba is very fortunate to be in a family who is able to go against all odds to save his life.

“Not every family can afford to give their pet the opportunity to correct a heart condition.  Take your time to do your research if you are purchasing a pet from breeders – ask around, speak with current owners, get to know the parents of the puppies – such congenital health issues should not be taken lightly.”

 

15 July: “I’ve been discharged! Everyone is amazed by my progress.” @kiba.shiba

“We feel extremely relieved that Kiba is no longer fainting. There have been moments when he got too excited and we held our breath and waited for the usual fainting spell – you can see sheer joy on his face when it didn’t happen. We are monitoring his progress closely – when the right time comes, we will know when he is ready for some off leash activity.”

“There is a worldwide community called the Mighty Hearts Project – fellow pet lovers who are there to support families seeking overseas open-heart surgeries for their furballs. It is good to know we are not alone.” ~ Juliana (extreme left) with Kiba

home sweet home

After 25 days in Japan pre-and-post-surgery, the family was ready to fly back to Singapore and continue Kiba’s journey to recovery.

“Mahatma Gandhi said, ‘The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated’. I hope we will continue to pursue better healthcare for our pets and have our very own cardiology specialist in Singapore!” 

26 July: “Good to be back home. My place of comfort.” @kiba.shiba

post-surgery review 

“DCRV surgery in humans is well-researched and published with a high success rate but there is very little data in the veterinary world. The vets at JASMINE Center will continue to monitor Kiba from a distance together with the ever-so-patient Dr Prakash at Mount Pleasant (Gelenggang). Without Dr Prakash’s help over the past months, Kiba might not have made it to Japan for his surgery.”

11 Aug: Post-surgery review and echocardiogram by Dr Nathalee Prakash. Clinically, Kiba has shown marked improvements with a better body condition score, higher energy level, no episodes of fainting.

Welcome home Kiba! L-R: Cash, Dr Keshia Beng, Dr Nathalee Prakash, Rose, Jonathan, Juliana

Juliana and Kiba with his favourite vet nurse Cash

“Kiba definitely has been a strong boy and is totally loving his new life. The journey to recovery is long but he is surrounded by family and friends who will give him much love and support.” Follow Kiba and his family at @kiba.shiba


We welcome medical stories of your animal friends to educate and inspire others. Email us at comms@mountpleasant.com.sg and be part of Mount Pleasant community over at our Website and Facebook.

Spuddy: Lymphoma And Chemotherapy

“Spud was diagnosed with lymphoma last August and nothing could have prepared us for this. We have always thought of her living her golden years with us and I even started preparing for that: a car that is easier for her to get into and a bed for her on the first floor, so she would not have to climb the stairs, in a hopefully remote future.” ~ Julie

While Spuddy is living bravely with lymphoma, it is important to make sure she is eating well, getting lots of rest and keeping to her normal routine to reduce stress levels. Spud loves going to work with her adopted sibling Elliot.

Last August, 12-year-old Spuddy was diagnosed with canine lymphoma – a cancer of white blood cells called the lymphocytes. Affected dogs are typically middle-aged and older. The cancer cells invade and destroy normal tissues,  most commonly the lymph nodes, and cause the nodes to swell and harden. As the disease progresses, internal organs such as the liver, spleen and bone marrow become affected.

the patient OFTEN PRESENTS WITH LUMPS OR SWELLINGS ON THE NECK, ARMPIT AND GROIN AREAS

Lymphoma is a common cancer in dogs.  When Spuddy was referred to Dr Cheryl Ho, her lymph nodes were enlarged. At one stage, her right submandibular lymph node (on the neck) measured 7cm x 6cm. Other signs of lymphoma include appetite loss, weight loss and fatigue.

Biopsy and other diagnostic test (such as complete blood count, platelet count, biochemical profile, urinalysis, ultrasound) allow vets to accurately diagnose lymphoma and stage the disease to determine how far the cancer has spread. Chemotherapy is a treatment choice to shrink enlarged lymph nodes and aim for complete remission.

“Facing the ugly truth revealed by the biopsy, we decided that if there were any chance of helping her through this, we would take it. Losing her in a couple of weeks or months was something we could simply not accept as we felt that she still had so much to live for. We set a simple rule: we would do anything, as long as it wouldn’t compromise the quality of her life. With that, we decided to put her through chemotherapy. We spoke to a couple of vets and an owner who went through chemotherapy with her dog, to gather as much information as we could. And so we took this route.”

Most dogs tolerate chemotherapy well. Regular monitoring and checkups are important to evaluate Spuddy’s response to treatment.

The goal of chemotherapy is to kill and slow the growth of cancer cells, produce minimal negative effects on normal cells and improve quality of life.

Most dogs tolerate chemotherapy well. Common side effects include appetite loss, decreased energy level, mild vomiting or diarrhoea over a few days. If serious side effects do occur, the medical team will review and adjust the treatment protocol.

Spuddy was started on cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine (CHOP chemotherapy protocol). She was responsive to initial treatment and the enlarged lymph nodes became smaller. However when the protocol was completed, Spud only achieved partial remission.

rescue protocol

For dogs like Spuddy with chemotherapy resistant lymphoma, rescue protocols are available where different drugs or different combinations of drugs are given together with proactive supportive care to induce remission and maintain a good quality of life.

“Spud has had many good days and some not so good days since starting her treatment but for every extra day we get to spend with her, we are forever thankful. Spud is family, a great friend and a sweet, iconic presence in the house and even in the office. That is why we are resolved to see her through this difficult battle she has undertaken.”

Week 4 rescue protocol: Most chemotherapy drugs are given by intravenous (IV) injection. A few are given by mouth as a tablet or capsule. Doses of drugs and treatment schedules are carefully calculated to minimise any discomfort to Spuddy.

Together with veterinary oncologists, Dr Cheryl Ho and team at Mount Pleasant Central Vet Clinic (Whitley) worked out a rescue protocol for Spud. Dogs who failed to respond to initial chemotherapy have been known to achieve durable remission with rescue chemotherapy.

Am I making the Right Decision?

If your pet has been diagnosed with cancer, work closely with your vets to decide on a treatment plan that works best for your pet and your family. When chemotherapy is not an option, whether for emotional, time or financial reasons, discuss other treatment plans which can help your pet feel better and maintain a good quality of life.

“We have been very fortunate to have had great support from family, friends, medical staff and colleagues at work to go through this journey with us.” Spuddy’s BFFs Carol & Elliot

There is no absolute right or wrong along the journey and there may be moments we doubt ourselves and the choices we make. Hopes high – with support from family, friends and vets who do not give up too easily – dear Spuddy will have many more good days ahead of her.

Sarge: Lung Lobe Torsion

When 3-year-old Sarge lost his appetite and started panting for two days even in an air-conditioned room, he was referred to our specialist surgeon Dr Patrick Maguire.

X-rays and CT scan revealed pleural effusion (fluid accumulation in the chest cavity) with a right lung lobe torsion (twisting). This is a life threatening condition that requires immediate stabilisation and surgical intervention.

Lung lobe torsion

When a lung lobe twists, it causes obstruction of the bronchus and vessels. The torsed lobe is identified through a lateral intercostal thoracotomy and surgically removed with a stapling device. 

Thoracotomy (open-chest surgery): performed by Dr Maguire via an incision on the side of the chest to visualise the affected lung lobe.

Lobectomy: the affected lung lobe is surgically removed and sent for histopathology and bacterial culture.

After the torsed lung lobe is surgically removed, a chest tube is placed to allow for removal and evaluation of fluid and air from the chest cavity during post-operative period.

Recovering at home

Don’t think Sarge enjoys this channel

“Sarge is doing great and back to normal. He coughs sometimes but otherwise everything is good.” Grateful for families who do all they can to give their best friends the best chance at health and happiness. Sarge is back to fun and games with his sweet little missy!

If your dog has a sudden episode of respiratory distress, please go to the nearest vet clinic immediately. For after hours and emergencies, take your pets to our Mount Pleasant After Hours Clinic located at 232 Whitley Road.

Flat-faced dogs such as Bulldogs and Pekingeses are at risk of upper airway abnormalities such as stenotic nares and elongated soft palate. More about brachycephalic airway obstruction syndrome (BOAS). 

We leave you with this super adorable photo taken by our vet nurse Gerren. You are a brave boy Sarge!


We welcome medical stories of your animal friends to educate and inspire others. Email us at comms@mountpleasant.com.sg and be part of Mount Pleasant community over at our Website and Facebook.

Kuro: Mast Cell Tumour

“Kuro is quite adventurous – he loves going out! As soon as he sees his leash or knows he’s getting into the car, he gets ULTRA excited.”

“He literally quivers with excitement thinking we are going to the park or beach. So naturally he was upset when he realised it’s the vet instead!”

“The first time we saw the growth, it was about the size of his nipple. We didn’t think much of it as Kuro has a history of sensitive skin. We thought it was a reaction to some environmental irritant. However, it continued to grow and started to look red and angry.” ~ Denise

WHAT IS A MAST CELL TUMOUR?

Mast cells are present in large numbers in the skin and play a role in inflammatory and allergic responses. When they replicate in higher than normal numbers, mass cell tumours can develop.

  • Mast cell tumours (MCTs) are common cutaneous (skin) tumours in dogs.
  • Usually occur as solitary lumps, and occasionally as multiple masses.
  • Range from low grade (low rate of metastasis or spread) to high grade (malignant with an aggressive rate of metastasis).
  • Vary in appearance – just a raised bump or a swollen ulcerated mass
  • Vary in size –  from a few millimetres to a few centimetres in diameter.

MCTs vary in size and appearance. Kuro’s lump measured 10x5mm.

Fine needle aspirate and cytology: A sample of the cells is taken with a very fine needle and examined under a microscope to identify mast cells.

SURGical excision IS THE TREATMENT of choice FOR MASS CELL TUMOURS

Excision with wide margins to completely remove the tumour and surrounding neoplastic cells. The mass will be sent for histopathology for grading and to confirm if the tissue margins are clean and ‘free from cancer cells’. Dogs with low grade MCT have very good prognosis and further treatment is typically not necessary.

“Knowing that Kuro required surgery, we turned to Dr Sandhya Nair (Mount Pleasant North) as she has been taking care of Kuro’s surgeries since he was a puppy. She was professional and in-depth with her diagnosis, and clear in the steps we needed to take. It eased some of our worries.” ~ Denise

Kuro came back for suture removal. “The surgery went well and the lab result confirmed the tumour as Grade 1. We will monitor Kuro closely for any abnormal lumps.”

Chemotherapy

If the MCT is high grade, complete surgical excision cannot be obtained, or there is evidence of spread to lymph nodes or other tissues, chemotherapy may be recommended. Dogs and cats appear to tolerate chemotherapy better than humans. Side effects (such as vomiting, diarrhea, appetite loss) are minimal.

The goal of treatment is to kill and slow the growth of cancer cells, produce minimal negative effects on normal cells, and allow our patients to lead a good quality life for as long as possible.

EXAMINE YOUR DOGs REGULARLY FOR LUMPS & BUMPS

Run your hands all over your dog’s body, feel for unusual lumps and bumps and look out for fur loss, redness or swelling. Lumps and bumps, especially fast-growing ones, should be assessed by a vet. Dogs with a history of MCT should be rechecked regularly.

“Kuro is super stubborn. He doesn’t like people telling him what to do but will do anything for food.”

“For months, Kuro would just sleep on the floor next to the dog bed we bought. After surgery, the bed came in handy when he needed to rest on a comfy place. From then on, Kuro sleeps on his bed every night.”

“Kuro farts a lot, loves human company (doesn’t care about dogs or at least pretends he can’t be bothered), and communicates through snorts! He only barks at the vacuum cleaner or people coming through the gate and it’s literally just 1 bark. He’s very selfish with his barks!”


We welcome medical stories of your animal friends to educate and inspire others. Email us at comms@mountpleasant.com.sg and be part of Mount Pleasant community over at our Website and Facebook.

Urinary Incontinence In Our Senior Dogs

Urinary incontinence is the inability to control urination, a common problem in ageing dogs. You may notice drops of urine on the floor, a wet dog bed, urine smell on your dog or wet inflamed skin around your dogs’ genitals.

Urinary incontinence can be frustrating but please do not punish your dog. This is a medical – not a behavioural – condition. No matter how well your dog has been potty trained, he may have an accident in the house if he is suffering from a bladder or urinary tract infection.

Consider using doggie diapers to prevent skin infections.

Frequent and painful attempts at urination can be due to:
  • hormonal imbalance
  • weak bladder sphincter
  • polyps or cancerous growths in the urinary tract or prostate
  • bladder infection
  • urinary tract infection
  • bladder stones
  • spinal injury or degeneration
  • diseases that cause excessive water consumption (e.g. diabetes, kidney disease)

If your dog has been diagnosed with bladder stones, the ultimate goal is to dissolve or surgically remove the stones via a procedure called cystotomy, and prevent them from recurring. Read more here.

Signs of Urinary Incontinence in Dogs
  • dribbling urine when walking around
  • leaking urine when resting
  • urinating in large amounts
  • excessive licking of the genitals
What Should I Do If My Dog Is Incontinent?

Consult your veterinarian to confirm a diagnosis. A urinalysis can be performed to check if your dog is suffering from a bladder infection. Other tests may include a urine culture, blood work, radiographs and ultrasound.

Most bladder stones are visible on X-ray. Stones or sediments that are not radiolucent can be detected by ultrasound.

How Is Urinary Incontinence Treated?

Treatment depends on the underlying cause. Medications can often manage the problem effectively. In cases of incontinence due to bladder stones or a protruding disc, surgery may be recommended.

How Can I Manage Urinary Incontinence in my dogs?
  • Take your dogs for more frequent walks: first thing in the morning and shortly after they wake up from naps.
  • Place clean towels or pee pads in your dog’s favourite sleeping areas.
  • Clean and dry the skin around your dog’s genital area, abdomen and legs more often to prevent skin infection.
  • Consider using doggie diapers.

Do not restrict your dog’s water intake without first consulting your vet.

OTHER WAYS TO MAKE LIFE BETTER FOR OUR SENIOR dogs
  • Provide a quiet space with a comfortable but firm bed.
  • Divide a meal into smaller portions throughout the day.
  • Provide easy access to the garden for elimination (e.g. gently-sloped ramp).
  • Provide non-slip floor surfaces to help your senior dog get up and walk more easily.
  • Raise food and water bowls to a comfortable level.

preventive health care can add good years to our best friend’s life

Our dogs age much faster than us and also tend to hide their pain. Most of the time, we do not realise they are in discomfort or fighting an illness until it is too late. Some common age-related health problems are osteoarthritis, kidney/liver/heart diseases, tumours or cancers, hormonal disorders like diabetes or thyroid imbalance. Yearly health screening can help detect diseases in the early stages, giving our best friends the best chances of a full recovery.


We always welcome medical stories of your animal friends which can educate and inspire others. Email us at comms@mountpleasant.com.sg if you have a story to share. Meanwhile, be part of Mount Pleasant community over at our Website and Facebook.

Cutie: Flash Glucose Monitoring System For Diabetic Pets

Joette with Cutie

how did cutie come into your life?

I was leading a busy and stressful life in the corporate world. The only thing I loved to do was visit the pet farms during my free time. I saw Cutie during one of my visits. She was at the back of the viewing room – her eyes so sorrowful. We both looked at each other for a long time. I could not stop thinking about her. Two weeks later, we brought Cutie home.

living with skin problems

When Cutie developed skin problems, we went to the vet very often but it just got worse. Then I met Dr Simon Quek at one of his talks. We did a skin allergy test to find out what Cutie was reacting to (e.g. pollen, dust mites, tobacco). It can be difficult to avoid exposure to certain environmental allergens. We started Cutie on immunotherapy and it has been working well.

living with blindness

Last year, Cutie was diagnosed with diabetes. Her condition worsened rapidly and within a month, she developed cataracts in both eyes. Cataract surgery was successfully performed by Dr Heng Yee Ling but unfortunately, Cutie developed glaucoma.

It was a very painful and difficult decision to go ahead with enucleation to remove both her eyes. You will find this silly – I actually let Cutie choose from 2 pieces of paper: ‘keep’ or ‘take out’. She kicked the paper with the words ‘take out’.

“We got the Muffin’s Halo to help Cutie get around. Now she is familiar with the surrounding – we do not move or add in new furniture – she can find her way around and even climb up and down the stairs. I guess she ‘activates’ her other senses and decided to move on with life.”

“I learnt something from Cutie: We don’t need a pair of eyes to see the world. We just need a heart to feel it.”

living with diabetes

We are very fortunate to meet Dr Nathalee Prakash and her team – their dedication, patience and commitment. To reduce stress in Cutie, Dr Prakash introduced us to a glucose monitoring device that is implanted into Cutie’s neck – no more poking of needles to draw blood.

Application of the sensor is relatively quick, painless and well-tolerated by diabetic patients.

“Now we can monitor Cutie’s blood glucose with ease at home. Cutie is the first dog to use this sensor!”

flash glucose monitoring system 

Effective blood glucose (BG) monitoring is essential for the management of dogs and cats with diabetes mellitus. BG readings can be affected by stress, food consumption and exercise. BG testing in a vet clinic can be stressful for our pets, especially cats. Under stressful conditions, the values obtained may not be an accurate reflection of the BG curve on a typical day.

A novel Flash Glucose Monitoring System is now available to measure interstitial tissue glucose levels every minute via a disposable sensor with a small catheter inserted under the skin. It can be worn for up to 14 days and eliminates the need for repeated blood tests at the vet clinic. The readings are collected, registered and stored automatically. Email mpvc@mountpleasant.com.sg or call 6251 7666 to find out more.

For patients living with diabetes, consistent, unchanging and constant are keywords to remember for lifestyle, diet and treatment.

Ideally, a diabetic dog or cat should be fed the same type of food, same amount, at the same time each day. A regular schedule will help minimise fluctuations in blood glucose so that the amount of insulin needed remains the same. Once the diabetes is properly regulated, our diabetic pets like Cutie can live relatively normal lives.


We always welcome medical stories of your animal friends which can educate and inspire others. Email us at comms@mountpleasant.com.sg if you have a story to share. Meanwhile, be part of Mount Pleasant community over at our Website and Facebook.

Happy Father’s Day Cary!

He may first appear to be a man of few words. Get to know him better and you will see the limitless knowledge he carries within. And a big genuine heart that wins over colleagues, clients and patients. In the words of his team mates at Mount Pleasant (Farrer), this man is patient, reliable, humble yet comical. He is not just a colleague but a counsellor, father figure, living encyclopaedia and Captain America! Happy Father’s Day Cary!

” I believe, with my role, I can make a difference and touch the lives of not only our patients but also their owners.” ~ Cary with Big Man

“Aaahhh…with that special touch, you can ‘cary’ me all day long!” ~ Blue

“The best part of my job is the ability to help our patients feel or get better. Another thing I love about my job is the people I work with.”

“Our life priorities completely change after starting a family.”

Jennifer and two bundles of joy!

“To be a good father, you need patience. Lots and lots of patience. When life gets tough, you just have to roll with the punches!”


Now here are tributes from some of Cary’s team mates at Mount Pleasant (Farrer)!

“Cary is reliable and understanding. He is our Captain America!” ~ Nelson

“Cary is just like a father to us.” ~ Kerry May

“Cary is such a patient and good teacher. He is also very humble.” ~ Dr Daphne Low

“Cary is a great fatherly figure in the clinic! Knowledgeable and trustworthy, but grounded and comical. Someone we can always count on!” ~ Dr Teo Jia Wen

“Cary is an excellent team leader and father figure to our team.” ~ Dr Heng Yee Ling

“Cary is not just my colleague and senior but also my adviser, my counsellor. I don’t only ask him about work matters but also seek his advice on personal matters like how to handle a growing kid. He is one of a kind. When it comes to knowledge, he is a living encyclopaedia – he knows every single thing! That’s our Cary.” ~ Emz