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Mira Mar Veterinary Hospital
58 Cockburn Rd
Albany, WA, 6330
Phone: 08 9841 5422

To our valued clients, we thank you!

Thank you for observing our changed operations in the past few weeks.  

We find ourselves in extraordinary circumstances, and the situation is changing rapidly. Mira Mar Veterinary Hospital prioritises the wellbeing of our patients, clients, and staff. With this in mind, we ask that you consider the health of our staff and other clients in your visits to us. Without healthy hospital staff, we will be unable to continue caring for our patients, and unlike other industries, we are unable to work from home.

We are trying our best to keep our clients and our staff as safe as possible, whilst still providing the best care that we can for your pets.

For more information, please have a look at our website.

COVID 19 Changes to Operation 25 3 2020
Contents of this newsletter

01  Catten the Curve!

02  New Services on offer from Mira Mar Vets

03  Coronavirus and pets - what you need to know

04  Did you know that Easter lilies can be lethal?

05  It's time to look out for chocolate toxicity

06  What happens when we run a blood test?

07  Cat prevents toddler from falling down stairs

01 Catten the Curve!
caitlin and kittens

It’s been a strange old week at Mira Mar Vets as we reduce our face-to-face contact so we can do our bit to flatten the curve and keep us all safe.

Thank you for your understanding!  

The good news is, an armload of kittens always makes us feel better, as our trainee Caitlin’s gorgeous smile shows.

02 New Services on offer from Mira Mar Vets
New Services collage


To enable us to keep looking after your pets at this challenging time, the dedicated team at Mira Mar Vets needs to stay healthy!

We also want all of you and your family to be healthy, so we’ve come up with a couple of ideas to help you care for your pet from home.

Our two new services are Phone Consultations and a Home Delivery Service.

If you have any questions about our new services, please give us a call on 9841 5422.

03 Coronavirus and pets - what you need to know

The Coronavirus outbreak is currently affecting many people throughout the world and in some places, changing the way we go about life. There are many questions and myths floating about so we thought we’d help answer, and debunk, a few of them here.

How is Coronavirus spread?

Even though Coronavirus (COVID-19) seems to have emerged from an animal source (the pangolin), the main route of transmission is human-to-human. This person-to-person spread is thought to occur mainly via respiratory droplets produced when a person sneezes, coughs or when coming into contact with infected sputum (hand-to-mouth transmission.)

I’ve heard that dogs and cats can get coronavirus?

There are species-specific coronaviruses that affect dogs and cats but it is important to realise that these are not the same as the COVID-19 strain being transmitted by humans. The strains that affect cats and dogs can cause mild gastrointestinal (enteric) signs and, very rarely, can also cause a much more serious disease in cats called Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP).

There is a vaccine available for the canine enteric form of coronavirus. This vaccine should not be used for prevention of the current COVID-19 strain as the enteric and respiratory viruses are distinctly different

Can I get coronavirus from my pet?

No. There is currently no evidence that COVID-19 can be spread from a pet to a human.

Can pets contract COVID-19 from humans?

A single dog has been confirmed to have been infected with COVID-19. This is thought to have been via human-to-animal transmission. The dog had not shown any signs of disease related to COVID-19 at the time this article was written. According to the World Health Organisation, there is no evidence that pets can be infected with, or transmit, the disease to humans.

What should pet owners do?

The best way to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 is to adopt good hygiene measures and this includes washing your hands before and after handling animals. The US Centre for Disease Control recommends that people who are sick, or who have been diagnosed with COVID-19, should restrict their contact with animals (this unfortunately means avoiding cuddling, kissing or being licked by your pet) until further information about the virus is available.

You should always contact us if you think your pet is unwell, or if you have any questions regarding COVID-19 and your pet.

04 Did you know that Easter lilies can be lethal?

Lilies are popular flowers and commonly used in arrangements due to their appealing fragrance. Many pet owners are, however, unaware of the danger they pose to cats.

It can be extremely dangerous if a cat eats any part of a lily, or drinks the water from a vase with lilies in it. Once ingested, a toxin can cause severe damage to the kidneys and, in some cases, the kidneys can fail completely and lead to death.

All species of the Lilium and Hemerocallis plants are poisonous to cats. Their common names include the Day lily, Asiatic lily, Madonna lily, Japanese Show lily, Stargazer lily, Oriental lily, Rubrum lily, Western or Wood lily, Tiger lily and Easter lily.

Other plants that have lily in their name such as Lily of the valley (Convallaria majalis), Peace lily (Spathiphyllum species) and Calla or Arum lily (Zantedeschia aethiopica) may have still lead to toxic effects if ingested (such as a gastrointestinal upset) but it is specifically Lilium and Hemerocallis that cause kidney failure.

Signs of lily poisoning include:

  • Drooling 
  • Vomiting
  • Refusing food
  • Lethargy and depression

Examination may reveal painful and enlarged kidneys, and the confirmation of kidney failure is made via blood and urine tests.

Treatment involves intensive hospitalisation and intravenous fluids, yet this may not always be successful, with some cats succumbing to kidney failure.

Please help us spread the word to help keep cats safe. Tell your local florist that lilies can be lethal and if you are gifted a bunch of lilies this Easter, the lilies are better off in the bin than around your cat!

05 It's time to look out for chocolate toxicity


With a large number of chocolate Easter eggs on the loose at this time of year, it is our job to remind you about the risk of chocolate toxicity.

Unfortunately, chocolate is not good for dogs! It contains a derivative of caffeine called theobromine and dogs have trouble digesting this ingredient and this leads to toxicity.

There will be dogs that are able to seek out any morsel of chocolate - big or small, wrapped or unwrapped!

It’s important to remember that ingesting chocolate can be fatal in some dogs.

As a general rule, the darker the chocolate, the more toxic it is. This means dark and cooking chocolate are extra-dangerous. Toxicity is also related to the amount of chocolate eaten relative to the weight of your dog. Be aware that smaller amounts of chocolate may still cause a gastric upset. You can have a play around with this calculator here to help determine what may be dangerous for your dog.

If you see your dog eat some chocolate or even if you think your dog might have ingested chocolate, it's best to call us for advice.

Signs of chocolate toxicity:

  • Hyperactivity
  • Vomiting and diarrhoea
  • Tremors, panting and a racing heart
  • Seizures

Treatment of chocolate toxicity:

In most cases, if we are able to make your dog vomit up the chocolate they have eaten before it is absorbed, we can prevent the more serious side effects. Dogs with severe toxicities may require a lavage of stomach contents, intravenous fluids and supportive care in hospital, including medications to treat seizures.

If you are worried about your pet you should always call us for advice.

06 What happens when we run a blood test?

When it comes to finding out more about the health of your pet, blood tests are a powerful tool. They provide us with an insight into the health of many organs and can also confirm if your pet is safe to undergo anaesthesia. They are important in the diagnosis of disease and can help rule out endocrine diseases (such as Addison’s disease).

What exactly happens when we take blood from your pet?

Most blood samples are taken from the jugular vein in the neck. This vein is large enough to provide a good sample and allows us to collect the blood as quickly as possible. This is important as blood will start to clot if it is not collected quickly enough and this can affect the results.

Most pets are also more relaxed when blood is taken from their jugular, however, if necessary, a smaller sample can be taken from a vein in the leg (although we generally try to save these veins for catheter placement.)

Once the blood has been collected, we place pressure over the vein for a minute or so to prevent any bruising.

The blood is then placed into tubes appropriate for required tests. Some tests can be run on machines we have 'in-house' but there are certain tests that are sent to an external laboratory, as they may require more extensive machinery.

We are always here to answer any questions you might have about your pet’s health.

07 Cat prevents toddler from falling down stairs

We’ve got a fantastic video for you this month. Check out this intelligent cat, who could be the best babysitter ever!

The cat helps prevent the toddler from falling down the stairs, and even appears to grab the toddler by the scruff of his neck. This behaviour is similar to what a cat would do with their kittens when they are getting into mischief.

This is just another reminder of how special our pets are.