A: A repellent is a preventative treatment, i.e. it deters insects; it doesn’t kill them. An insecticide will kill the fleas/ticks, so you should use this to quickly get rid of a burden of fleas. For more information on treating fleas, see our pages for cats and dogs.
A: This will depend on what product has been used. It’s not always necessary to vacate the room so always check the label before use.
A: No. You should remove any collars - especially flea collars - before using any other product on your cat.
A: Each Bob Martin Flea Tablet is effective within 15 minutes for a period of 24 hours. You can give your pet another tablet after 24 hours if needed.
A: After applying a spot on flea treatment to your pet, you should wait at least 48 hours before bathing your dog. Also avoid letting dogs swim during this time or getting completely soaked in the rain (easier said than done sometimes!). Repeated bathing after 48 hours can still reduce the efficacy of some spot on treatments, so don't wash your pet too often especially not with a Flea Shampoo. Washing before applying a spot on can also reduce the efficacy as it will reduce the skin oils which help spread the spot on over your pet’s body.
A: Unfortunately, there is no 'perfect' spot on yet. Some treat fleas, worms and mites, others treat fleas and ticks, but there is nothing currently available to treat all flea, ticks, mites and worms in one. As a consequence, it is sometimes necessary to duplicate flea treatments. If you're not sure what to use, or what can safely be used together then do contact your vet, or get in touch with us using our free vet advice service.
A: It is important to keep animals out of the room when using a home flea spray. After spraying, ventilate the room as well as you can by opening windows. Keep dogs out for at least 4 hours, or until the spray is thoroughly dry. Cats must be kept out for 24 hours. Do not spray any pet bedding unless the product specifically says it is safe to do so, but wash it in the machine at 60 degrees instead. This will kill any fleas, eggs and larvae in the bedding.
A: This really depends on which products are being used so please consult your vet or ask our vets before taking action. Generally, if you used a good flea treatment to start with you shouldn’t need to repeat it before a month has passed. In a situation where it seems like the spot on hasn't worked, it is likely to be an environmental issue and it is your house that needs treating. 95% of the flea lifecycle happens in your home and not on the pet so think about treating your home for fleas as well as your cat or dog.
A: This very much depends on the product. Please contact the manufacturer or your vet for more information.
A: Commonly, there are not many interactions between flea treatments and commonly used medication. However, there are occasions where this needs to be considered so please do check with your vet.
A: Bob Martin Clear is a range of pet care products that have been designed to keep your pet happy, healthy and free from fleas, ticks and worms. It includes treatments for cats, dogs and the home with a range of active ingredients including our new pesticide free products.
A: Clear can be used on kittens and puppies once they’re at least two months old. Dogs must weigh at least 2kg and cats at least 1kg. Never use a product on any pet other than what is specified on the pack.
A: Yes, you should purchase the variant suitable for the weight of your dog. For example, if you have a large dog that weighs over 40kg, you would need to purchase the treatment for extra large dogs. If you are unsure of your dogs weight then see your vet as they often offer free weight clinics.
A: As Clear is a topical treatment, frequent shampooing or bathing may reduce its efficiency, if a bath is essential then you should wait at least 48 hours. Or try a foaming shampoo for a quick freshen up.
A: You can use the spray on pets from six weeks of age.
More information on our Clear range.
A: Your pet shouldn’t eat/lick the product, so make sure they can’t groom or directly lick the area of application of a Spot On before it has dried;
A: No, you shouldn’t use them together. You should leave at least seven days between applications.
A: No, our Spot On Dewormer only treats tapeworm - it doesn’t have an effect on roundworm. To treat both types of worms in cats, try our Bob Martin Clear Wormer Tablets for Cats.
A: Based on historical information for the active ingredient in the product, there would be no immediate concerns for the use of the spot-on during pregnancy. If in doubt, seek the advice of a veterinary surgeon.
A. This depends on which treatment has been applied - check the product directions. Most advise treating every four weeks, however if you would like to treat sooner you can usually do so seven days after the initial application.
A: To find out the most up to date ingredient information about any pet product being sold in the U.K, search for it on the Veterinary Medical Directorate’s (VMD) Product Information Database here
A: Clear contains Fipronil which is the same active ingredient used in Frontline. The strength of the Fipronil is 10% WV in both products.
A: 'Complete' foods contain everything your pet needs and are the best option to feed your dog or cat. Although it may seem boring, cats and dogs actually don't mind eating the same thing every mealtime - it suits their GI tracts. Every pet is different but there are so many different choices there is something to suit every animal. All information relating to this should be clearly labelled on the dog food packaging.
With dogs, the most important thing to remember is to get the correct type of food for your dog’s age and breed. This is especially important with large breed dogs and when your pet is a puppy.
With cats, ensure you keep a close check on portion control and their weight.
A: There are many possible causes for why your pet may keep losing weight. Worms are obviously a concern so ensure your cat or dog is up to date with worming treatment (this should be done at least 4 times a year). If this is up to date but they still can't keep the weight on, then have your pet checked over by your vet. Other common causes of weight loss include parasites, incorrect food choices, diabetes, liver disease, kidneys disease, pancreatic problems and many more.
A: It is not generally advised to feed actual bones to dogs because fine sections can break off and get lodged or they can damage your pet’s teeth. Rawhide bones (beef / pork skin) are a better option but should still be supervised as large pieces can break off and become stuck in your dog’s intestines if not chewed for long enough. Various rubber toys are available and these can be filled with tasty treats to keep your dog’s teeth engaged!
Dogs with their puppy teeth shouldn't be given anything very hard to chew so avoid any hard toys/chews until the adult teeth are through at around 6 months of age. Always supervise your dog with any bones/bone like chews.
Have a look at our range of Naturally treats for some tasty alternatives to bones.
A: Lumps in dog’s mouths can often be benign but, there are also some very nasty, malignant lumps to be aware of. It is always best to take your pet to the vets for a check. Biopsies may be necessary to get a definite diagnosis but they are worth doing as malignant mouth lumps left untreated can quickly cause serious problems.
A: Itchy ears can occur for a number of different reasons. Allergies, ear infections and mites will all result in your dog rubbing or scratching at their ears, or sometimes just shaking their head. The most common cause of itchy ears in puppies is ear mites and the most common cause in adults is an ear infection. Normal dog ears should be clean with no excess wax and the skin should be pale and not red. If there is a lot of wax or a nasty smell coming from your dog’s ear, then they likely have an infection. It is advisable to take your dog to the vet as it is important to check that the ear drums are intact before any treatment is given. Some ear drops are toxic to the middle ear and can result in your dog going deaf if they are used when the ear drum is ruptured. Ear mites will result in your dog’s ears becoming very waxy. Often the wax is very dark and looks a bit like coffee grounds.
Cleaning with dog ear wipes or solution can help as this will remove the wax and will often drown the mites. However normally some kind of mite treatment will also be needed such as a spot on treatment or ear drops. Dogs with floppy ears or dogs that often go swimming and get water in their ears are often predisposed to ear infections. It is advisable to check your dog’s ears regularly and if they are prone to infections then regular cleaning is advised. Use a good quality ear cleaner as this will acidify the ear making it unfavourable to bacteria, and will also help break down any wax. Warm the cleaner before applying by putting it in your pocket for half an hour before applying. This can help with dogs that really resent having their ears cleaned. After applying, massage the ear base for 30-60 seconds. This is the most important step as it will make sure the cleaner gets right to the base of the ear and will break any wax down that is deep within the ear. After this use a piece of cotton wool to wipe out any excess cleaner. Do not worry too much about damaging the ear drum.
A: Dogs that have very prominent eyes such as Shih Tzus and Pugs can sometimes bruise their eyes if they have walked into something. As long as they still have their eye open wide and there is no discharge then this is unlikely to be anything to worry about and should resolve on its own.
Sometimes bruising can occur with more serious injury, for example if a dog has been hit by a car or if they develop high blood pressure. Your dog will be quiet and will often show other signs of injury or illness if this is the case. If you're dog seems unwell, their eye is closed, they have a clear or yellow discharge or are rubbing at their eye as well then it is advisable to take your dog to the vets.
A: As a general rule, if your dog is pregnant then their abdomen will start to get a bit rounder and their mammary glands will develop. This doesn't often happen or show until the last 3-4 weeks of pregnancy, depending on how many puppies a bitch is carrying. Dogs can sometimes have false pregnancies when they will get mammary development and can even produce milk, making enlarged mammary glands an unreliable indicator of pregnancy. The only reliable why to know for sure if your bitch is pregnant is to have them scanned by a vet. Most vets can diagnose pregnancy from 3 weeks onwards.
A: Anxiety in dogs can happen for a number of reasons, however it is normally because a dog has not been socialised properly when they were a puppy. It is really important to try and expose puppies to all sorts of scary things, dogs and people between the ages of 9-14 weeks to try and prevent anxiety when they are older. Some dogs may also have had a bad experience leading to anxiety.
Unfortunately, there is no quick fix and time and patience are needed. The key to changing behaviour is changing the way your dog feels about the stimulus. This can be done by keeping the stimulus far enough away that it does not produce a reaction and rewarding your dog for being calm. This is called desensitisation training and can be carried out with anything from people to cars.
Desensitisation to noises can be carried out by recording the noise that your dog is scared of and initially playing it quietly so that it does not elicit a response. As your dog gets used to the noise gradually increase the volume. You can also purchase CDs with recordings of noises that dogs are commonly scared of such as fireworks. Some dogs are so anxious that training alone is not enough and you may need help from a vet or specialist behaviourist. Dog trainers unfortunately do not have to hold any qualifications to be able to advertise. Try to find an APBC (The Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors) registered behaviourist. These trainers have to have undergone a certain amount of training and are closely monitored before they can join this group.
A: As dogs get older they very commonly develop arthritis in their joints, and this could be the cause of the discomfort in your pet. If the problem persists, we advise that you seek professional advice from your vet.
Q: How can I reduce the pain in my dog’s joints?
A: As dogs get older they very commonly develop arthritis in their joints. There are a number of things that can be done though unfortunately there is no cure.
1. Make sure your dog is the correct weight. If your dog is even slightly overweight this can vastly increase the pressure on joints. A recent study showed reducing your dog’s weight by just 10% resulted in the same reduction in lameness as starting your dog on anti-inflammatory medication.
2. Use supplements. Joint and mobility supplements containing glucosamine, chondroitin, MSM and fish oils are available to try and help reduce inflammation in joints. Recent research has shown that fish oils, especially green lipped mussel, may be the best type of supplement to use.
3. If your dog is very sore and stiff, then take them to the vet. Pain killing medication, acupuncture and laser treatment are now widely available and can drastically improve your dog’s quality of life if they are very sore.
A: As of 1st October 2015 the Highway Code has changed, a new rule was been introduced regarding securing your pet(s) while in a car.
The law is clear – you must secure your animal while in a car – if you don’t do this and an animal roaming freely around the vehicle is said to have contributed to causing an accident, then an insurance company could be well within their rights not to pay out on a claim.
The Highway Code states:
RULE 57 : When in a vehicle make sure dogs or other animals are suitably restrained so they cannot distract you while you are driving or injure you, or themselves, if you stop quickly. A seat belt harness, pet carrier, dog cage or dog guard are ways of restraining animals in cars. See more.
A: As a general rule cats will show mammary development and their abdomen will start to look a little bit rounder depending on how many kittens they are carrying. Experienced vets and breeders can sometimes diagnose pregnancy by feel. Small round lumps can be felt from about 3 weeks onwards in some cats, however, these can easily be confused with faeces or the bladder even in experienced hands. The only way to be 100% sure that your cat is pregnant is to have them scanned by a vet. Most vets can diagnose pregnancy from 3 weeks onwards.
A: The most common cause of scratching in cats is fleas. Run a flea comb through your cat’s coat to see if there is any flea dirt. This will be seen as small black specks which will go red when smeared onto wet cotton wool. Even if you don’t see fleas, if you haven’t treated your cat in the last month, it is worth treating them to be sure. If your cat has made the skin very sore then a trip to the vet is a good idea as an anti-inflammatory injection may be needed to stop the itching.
A: It is not normal for cats to be sick this often though many are. Cats can sometimes be sick because they are having an issue with hair balls. If when your cat is sick there is lots of hair then this is likely the cause. There are special diets which can be used to bind the hair and it pass through the gut. If your cat does not vomit up hair then it may be that they have developed an intolerance to their food. Try changing their diet to a more sensitive food.
A: Elderly cat’s very commonly suffer from stiff and arthritic joints, though they do not often show pain. They will certainly not vocalise when they are in pain. Sleeping a lot can actually be a sign of pain, though cats can sleep up to 23 hours a day so this is not a very good indicator! Muscle wastage over the back limbs is a very common sign. So if you’re cat’s back legs look very spindly it’s worth asking a vet to check them for pain. Failing to be able to jump up onto a chair or work top is another sign, as is seeking out warm or cold places. If you are worried it’s worth putting them on a joint supplement as this will do no harm and may actually help them feel better.
A: There are lots of different reasons why a cat may drink a lot, from cystitis to pain to renal disease. If your cat is elderly then renal disease is one of the most common causes. If you suddenly notice a change in your cats drinking habits get them checked by a vet as the sooner renal disease is diagnosed the better the prognosis.
A: There are many things that can cause alteration in a cat’s behaviour as they get older. Just like humans they can go senile. There are supplements which can help with this so it’s definitely worth getting them checked. Thyroid disease is really common in elderly cats and can also result in abnormal behaviour. Your vet will be able to take a blood test to check for this. Thyroid disease is easily treated with tablets or surgery to remove the affected gland so it is worth getting your cat checked to rule this out.
If you have any other queries then get in touch with us or our vet.