Well-being

Small Pet Care

Claire Dunling

What is your small furry of choice – Rabbit, Degu, Hamster, Rat or Guinea Pig? Savvy up on small pet care, and how to de-flea and worm yours.

Flea, lice and mite treatment

Though it seems like second nature to de-flea the cat and dog on a regular basis, it may not occur to all that our other furry friends require the same treatment too. As guinea pigs, rabbits are much smaller it’s important to use a product which is tailored to their needs and requirements. Xeno 450 is the perfect product as it’s efficient; treating fleas, ticks, mites and lice and has an easy to use spot on applicator. The sterling reviews certainly talk for themselves.

Though it is rare for domestic rats to catch parasite, it can still happen. The Xenex Ultra product is designed for hamsters, degus and other small rodents. Remember if you have numerous pets and find one infested the likelihood of that the rest of the clan will also have picked up the freeloaders too!

Start by grooming your small pet with a brush on a weekly basis – the more this is carried out at a young age the more comfortable they’ll become with it – this will allow you to remove any dirt, spot any fleas or ticks and any other skin conditions. Not only is grooming one of the major perks of having a pet, but it will also indicate if they have any other ailment – their fur speaks louder than words!

Wormers

Our littlest four legged friends are just as likely to catch ‘worms’ as our cats and dogs. If you notice any diarrhoea, a lack of appetite or their weight has decreased then worms could be a possibility. As with cats, when rabbits or guinea pigs groom they digest fleas which then lay eggs in their intestines.

Some preventable measures can be taken, such as washing the foods well, however it’s best to veer on the safe side and administer a wormer roughly four times a year. A popular treatment is the Pancur for rabbits, which is a non-prescription solution that can be used on most small animals – check with your vet the dose required for your particular small furry. As well as it’s worming action it can also combat parasites such as E Cuniculi, but again check with your vet about individual dosing regimes.

This post is an opinion and should only be used as a guide. You should discuss any change to your small pet’s care or lifestyle thoroughly with your vet before starting any program or treatment.

If in doubt contact your veterinary practice

And always keep your vet's phone number handy - just in case!