5 Best Kennel Practices of 2015
Throughout the years, Revival has worked with numerous facilities, learning much about current practices and pertinent issues. We want to share a summary of the best kennel practices that we saw in 2015.
Tip: Instead of changing everything you're doing, change one thing in 2016 and see the positive results. Over time, you will feel more comfortable trying new practices and finding out what works best for your facility.
BiosecurityIn 2015, we have seen an increased awareness of biosecurity. Establishing protocols can help limit exposure to disease. A simplistic approach works best, as it is easily understood. Washing hands with soap and warm water remains one of the most simple, trusted methods for increasing biosecurity. Wash hands immediately after entering a facility and repeat if going from one facility to another. Using disinfecting mats at all entry points will help eliminate diseases carried on your footwear. Disposable boot covers, rubber gloves and even disposable coveralls should be readily available to anyone entering the facility. Maintaining a specific quarantine area for any new arrivals will also prove beneficial for your facility. Quarantine should last three weeks, and new arrivals should be carefully monitored for diseases and other issues.
DisinfectantsKnowing the differences among disinfectants helps you know which one to choose. For years, we have heard that the cheapest, most effective disinfectant is bleach. A fantastic surface disinfectant, bleach allows little margin for error and can be a health hazard for puppies and kittens if handled improperly. Additionally, it does not penetrate organic matter. Virkon avoids this issue, disinfecting the surface and penetrating into any missed organic matter. This is especially important when illness is going through your facility.
WellnessDiets often oxidize as they sit on the shelves, losing important nutritional fundamentals. One diet may become low in vitamin B, whereas another may lack vitamin D. Too many choices and formulation differences can present a daunting decision to you as a facility manager. In 2015, we saw many managers turning to the multivitamin/mineral supplement, Doc Roy's®Daily Care. These flavored tablets cost pennies a day, are made in the United States, and will assist in filling any nutritional gaps. We now have a flavored granule available for mixing with the food you are already feeding. For minimal cost and minimal labor, you can implement overall wellness.
DewormingPerhaps the most misunderstood part of kennel management is strategic deworming. Many of these worms have been around since the dinosaurs, so we are not going to kill them all off by giving a deworming product. The goal is to manage the worms and keep them at a low enough level that we do not see issues. Safeguard is currently the dewormer of choice as it is very broad spectrum and very safe. One of the best practices is to deworm mom with Safeguard two weeks prior to giving birth. This will lower the risk of worms being transferred to the offspring. When mom doesn't give worms to puppies and kittens, you don't have to fight to get them out. By strategically deworming you can minimize the risk of having issues from the beginning.
CalciumCalcium was huge this year. Moms need increased calcium during birth, and supplementing prevents the issues deficiencies cause. Signs of deficiency include moms pacing, unable to get comfortable, or lying down and getting back up multiple times. We have encountered instances of moms chewing on puppies' umbilical areas to the point of death. We recommend supplementing calcium right before whelping, and then after every other puppy is born, and have seen great success eliminating such issues. A fast-acting calcium gel like Oral Cal Plus works best as it can be hard to get a mom to take tablets during whelping.
We look forward to working with you in 2016, and helping you towards continued success!
If you need help, call us at 1-800-786-4751.
-The Revival Education Team
The materials, information and answers provided through this website are not intended to replace the medical advice or services of your personal veterinarian or other pet health care professional. Consult your own veterinarian for answers to specific medical questions, including diagnosis, treatment, therapy or medical attention.