A professional, caring vet practice
Our vet practice in Coalville, North West Leicestershire provides an extensive range of veterinary services.
While Cockburn Vets is one of the largest vet practices in Leicestershire, familiar, friendly and professional service sits at the heart of what we do – and has done for generations.
Keeping your pet’s teeth clean is an important way to stop them suffering from tooth pain. It not only helps to keep their breath smelling sweeter, but also reduces the risk of heart, liver and kidney disease. By 3 years of age, 80% of dogs and 70% of cats have oral disease, much of which can be prevented through brushing.
Our pets are so good at hiding their pain, it is important to regularly check their mouths for signs of dental disease.
Things to look out for include:
- Bleeding, red and inflamed or recessed gums
- Layers of tartar overlying the teeth
- Discoloured teeth
- Loose teeth or missing teeth
- Bad breath
- Pawing at their mouth
- Reluctance to eat dry food or preferentially eating soft food
The SINGLE most important and beneficial thing you can do to prevent dental disease is daily teeth brushing. Brushing teeth every other day is 60% less effective than brushing every day and brushing 4 times a week or less has shown to have no benefit at all. The younger your pet when you start brushing teeth, the easier it will be to get them used to it, and the more effective it will be in preventing dental disease.
Never use human toothpaste; tasty dog and cat toothpaste is available and enzymatic toothpaste is best. Always start by just using your finger to apply the toothpaste, to let your pet get used to it. Repeat this until they are comfortable. The next step is to introduce the toothbrush – the benefits of brushing teeth are due to the actual mechanical action of brushing.
We also recommend using Hill’s Prescription Diet® t/d®, a clinical diet developed by nutritionists & veterinarians and especially formulated to support your dog’s dental health. In fact, Hills t/d is clinically proven nutrition to reduce plaque, stain, & tartar build up.
If your pet needs more advanced dental treatment we can perform this in our Coalville surgery dental suite. The procedure is carried out under general anaesthetic. We will descale your pet’s teeth, extract any that are loose or rotten and polish those that are left. We will supply you with a special paste to reduce the level of rebuild-up of plaque and give you advice on how to use this.
Book a dental check up – Save 10% on fees!
Please get in touch to book a dental appointment by calling the practice on 01530 836654.
Exceptional Preventative Care
At Cockburn Veterinary Group we know that you want the best for your pet. Our practice believes in preventative health and as a recent survey by Hoffman, Creevy and Promislow (2013) found that overall, male dogs lived about 14% longer when neutered, and female dogs lived about 26% longer when neutered, that’s why we strongly recommend dog neutering. Although bitch spays (Female Dog Neutering) are routine surgical procedures, the traditional method involves significant invasive abdominal surgery so we’ve added laparoscopic (keyhole) spay to our services, and witnessed for ourselves the remarkable recovery time for these patients.
On our veterinary team are Cathy Churchill and Diane Storer. Cathy has over seven years and Diane over three years of experience using this technique. Between them they have performed over 600 laparoscopic spays (dog neutering) to date. They also use the technique for other surgeries, like liver biopsies, gastropexies (to prevent stomach torsions), exploratory surgery and to remove abdominal testicles. We feel that it’s an exciting addition to our comprehensive list of surgical procedures.
What are the Benefits?
Traditional dog spays involve removing the uterus and ovaries through a three to four inch long incision in the abdominal wall. This incision together with the associated bruising is painful and we give pain-relief to minimise the pain felt. The small incisions made in laparoscopic spaying together with the reduction in bruising means this is a much less painful procedure for your pet. The recovery time is also much shorter and because the incisions are so small there is also much less scarring and chance of post-operative infection.
The procedure only removes the ovaries which stops seasons and unwanted pregnancies and also stops infections of the uterus such as endometritis and pyometra. Research in Europe and the USA over the past 25 years has shown that removing the uterus (womb) is generally unnecessary and increases post-operative pain. Additionally there is no increased risk of pyometra (infection of the womb) with this technique compared with a traditional dog spay. We therefore only remove the ovaries unless we have concerns about the health of your dog’s uterus.
The most obvious difference you will notice is a slightly larger clipped area extending up the flanks – and that two days later your dog will be happily running about in the park.
Does it cost more?
What to Expect
Laparoscopic spay (dog neutering) involves making two small 10mm incisions allowing access to the abdomen. Using a magnifying camera and direct light means far better visualisation to which we add a 17” TV screen. You can imagine how much better the surgeon can examine all around the abdomen.
When should I book my dog for a keyhole spay?
The timing is the same as a routine dog spay: three to four months after a season or at six months of age, before their first season.
How do I prepare my dog?
- Normal pre and post operation care is needed.
- Starve from your dog from 9pm the night before their op.
- Give access to water until the morning of the surgery.
- Your dog will go home that afternoon as usual.
- Feed bland food on the evening of the surgery.
And after the surgery?
- Rest for your dog for 48 hours after surgery.
- Although your dog will not have stitches we ask you to bring them back for a check-up with a nurse at 48 hours.
Book a laparoscopic spay for your dog
Having an extensive range of in-clinic laboratory machines allow us to test samples of your pet’s blood and urine on the spot, giving us immediate access to the information needed to diagnose, treat and monitor your pet when they’re ill and obtaining an answer for you more quickly at what we appreciate can be an anxious time.
Being able to take the guesswork out of diagnosis allows us to start treatment immediately. This is particularly for important for emergencies where the patient’s health might be severely compromised by a delay waiting for results to come back from an outside laboratory.
Our lab machines also allow us to improve patient safety when your pet needs surgery as on the day their operation we can perform a pre-anaesthetic screen to help minimise the risk of anaesthetic complications. If our vets recommend it, we can perform a more extensive profile which also includes checking for other blood and electrolyte abnormalities.
Many of our senior patients need long-term medication to control heart or thyroid conditions or pain from arthritis where it is vital to monitor the effectiveness of their medication and the effects on their body. Using a combination of clinical examination and in-house laboratory tests our vets can provide you with the information you need to keep your pet fit and healthy.
From checking blood counts to performing screens on the kidneys or liver, checking for urine infections or to see if a number of medications are at the correct level in the bloodstream, our laboratory is a vital part of our extensive in-house care.
Having your pet microchipped is a great way of helping the chances of your companion making it home should he or she get lost. It’s the quick, easy and painless way for your pet to carry a digital ID wherever they are – and be part of the UK Pet Microchip Registry.
Microchipping became compulsory for all dogs in England and Wales in April 2016 and although it’s not compulsory for cats we think it’s a jolly good idea for our feline friends too!
Save 50% on microchipping!
Neutering your dog
Unless you’re intending to breed your dog then dog spaying will be an important consideration from about the age of six months or 3 to 4 months after her first season. While it’s a routine and daily op we carry out, it’s still non-reversible major surgery under general anaesthetic. A full ovario-hysterectomy removes ovaries and uterus so you need to weigh up the pros and cons.
Canine bitch spays
- No unwanted attention from roving male dogs – so no accidental pregnancies.
- Prevents pyometra – a serious, potentially life-threatening infection of the uterus that can affect your female dog when she gets older.
- Prevents ovarian and canine uterine cancer.
- Reduces the risk of canine mammary cancer the earlier in life you have her spayed.
- We can use laparoscopic bitch spay (dog neutering) techniques – keyhole-assisted surgery – that lessens the impact of the procedure.
- It is major surgery and comes with the usual risks associated with general anaesthesia.
- Potential urinary incontinence later in life – but this is actually pretty uncommon and can be controlled by drugs.
- Some claim weight gain as a side-effect but as ever, you can control this for your pet with good diet and exercise.
- Most bitches will have their first season between six and 12 months.
- We don’t spay (dog neutering) bitches just before or just after the first season as increased blood supply to the uterus and ovaries increases surgical risk and for up to three months after the season ends, your pet may naturally develop a false pregnancy due to hormone imbalance.
- False pregnancy symptoms include: lactation, low appetite, general agitation or ‘nesting’ behaviour like carrying toys to bed.
- Best time to spay your bitch? Best practice says either at six months (subject to a thorough examination to check she’s mature enough) or preferably around three to four months after that first season – or after any post-season false pregnancy has passed.
Canine dog CastrationAs with spaying bitches, surgical canine castration – removal of the testicles – under general anaesthetic is routine, but it’s a significant procedure and not without the attendant risks of complication. Unless you intend to put your chap out to stud, it’s important to balance the relative advantages and disadvantages.
- Neither unwanted pregnancies nor accidental litters with another owner’s female.
- May help if you’re enduring behavioural issues such as aggression, roaming or inappropriate scent marking.
- Prevents canine testicular cancer later in life plus reduces the chances of prostatic hyperplasia – an enlarged prostate – as well as canine prostate cancer.
- His bark will not turn soprano!
- It’s major surgery and comes with the usual risks associated with general anaesthesia.
- It can make him more docile and may sometimes change the consistency of his coat.
- Again, some claim weight gain as a side-effect but as ever, you can control this for him with good diet and exercise.
- Best time to castrate your dog? He’ll start maturing reproductively from around six months. Best practice says castrate from that point onwards (subject to a thorough examination to check he’s mature enough).
- If you are experiencing behavioural problems with your un-neutered K-9 youngster, come and talk to us at the earliest opportunity.
Neutering your cat
Breeders apart, we follow current guidelines from The Cat Group and the British Veterinary Association. We suggest that all female (queen) and male (tom) companion cats should be neutered from four months of age. Research from America indicates that both spayed queens and castrated toms live longer than their intact counterparts, are less likely to be hit by a car and less likely to require treatment for an animal bite – by a very significant margin in all three categories.
As with a canine bitch spay, a cat spay is an ovariohysterectomy involving surgical removal of ovaries and uterus under general anaesthetic.
The advantages of neutering your cat
- Neither unwanted pregnancies nor accidental litters – plus no noisy night-time mating disturbances.
- Prevents tricky complications like feline caesarean section and serious conditions like feline mammary cancer and infected uteri (pyometra) in females – and testicular cancer or prostate problems in males.
- Reduces the risk of feline urine spraying and feline roaming that can end in death or injury in fights or on the road.
Neutering your rabbit
There’s real truth to the old saying ‘breeding like rabbits’. A female (doe) can produce 20 or more offspring in a single year – that’s why rabbit neutering is very important for both does and bucks (male) pet rabbits.
Not only does rabbit neutering prevent unwanted pregnancies, it helps manage behavioural issues like urine spraying and aggression.
- Most importantly, neutering a doe rabbit prevents uterine tumours, mammary gland tumours and uterine (uterus) infections.
- Rabbit uterine cancer and tumours are the most common cancer in a doe with the risk rising to 80 per cent in rabbits 6 years old.
- Often these tumours also spread to other abdominal organs, lungs, skin, brain and bone and reduce lifespan. Neutering a buck rabbit prevents testicular tumours.
- We recommend neutering female rabbits at between six to nine months old and as early as four to six months old for neutering a buck rabbit.
- While there is a higher anaesthetic risk for rabbits, Cockburn Veterinary Group offsets these risks with intravenous and subcutaneous fluids (SC) and we send all pet rabbits home with pain relief and nutritional support.
Save 10% on neutering!
Veterinary Nursing Clinics
Behind every great vet, there’s a great nurse too. Our North West Leicestershire veterinary nurses are essential to the care we offer to your companion animal and play an important part in ensuring that the practice is a happy and comfortable place for your pet to visit.
As well as assisting our vets during vaccinations, surgical procedures and when collecting blood samples, our dedicated veterinary nursing team run wellness clinics for animals registered with our North West Leicestershire animal surgery, where you’ll have the opportunity to ask questions about your companion animal’s general health, compare notes with fellow owners or discuss more specific concerns in detail. As these clinics are for healthy animals only.
If you think your pet might be unwell, please make an appointment to see one of our vets. We’ll ensure that your pet gets the right treatment as soon as possible and doesn’t put other pets at the clinics at risk. So why not bring your healthy pet along for a check-up and meet our nurse? …and if your pet is a member of our Healthy Paws Club your consultation fees are covered by your monthly payments – never pay for a consultation again.
Pet Weight Clinic
Obesity in companion animals is increasing: too much food and too little exercise. The risks to pets include: early on-set arthritis, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, bladder problems – as well as reducing quality of life and even shortening life expectancy.
If you’re worried your pet’s weight is creeping up, try our pet weight clinic. Our vet nurses can help you help your companion with an initial consultation to design the right diet plan and exercise regime. We monitor your pet’s weight over time and once at a healthy weight, help him or her to maintain it.
Flea & Worm Clinic
We know you know about the importance of regular flea and worm treatments but we also understand that administering worming tablets – especially to cats – can be easier said than done.
Our vet nurses will administer any treatments your vet has prescribed so your pet is properly protected against parasites and if your pet is a member of our Healthy Paws Club it’s all included in your monthly subscription! While you and your companion is with us, we’ll also check for flea dirt or fleas and provide advice on the most appropriate flea treatment to suit your pet and your lifestyle.
Pet Dental Clinic
Dental health is as important to your pet as it is to you. However toothache or a dental condition is hard to spot and your companion may be eating enthusiastically despite being in pain. Left undetected and untreated, dental disease can ultimately lead to serious heart, liver and kidney problems.
At Cockburn Veterinary Group we recommend a good dental hygiene regime with appropriate chew toys, teeth brushing and a balanced diet – plus a visit to one of our pet dental clinics every 6 to 12 months. Our veterinary nurses will check your companion animal’s teeth and gums, provide advice on preventative dental care and tips on teeth brushing – as well as outlining a good dental regime. If our nurse discovers possible signs of dental disease or a troublesome condition, we can refer your pet for treatment by your vet.
Individual Puppy Clinic
Your puppy’s first few weeks and months with you are like a child’s early years. Their experiences during this important period will likely shape their behaviour for life.
Our puppy clinics provide a fun environment where you can learn to socialise your puppy appropriately with other dogs and people, helping your companion begin maturing into a well adjusted, well behaved and happy adult. They also help your puppy to become accustomed to – and not fearful of – visits to the surgery.
Puppy clinics are also a great opportunity for you to ask questions about care and any problems you might need to look out for so that we can nip them in the bud. From canine behaviour, training your puppy, puppy socialisation and diets to pet neutering, pet vaccination, puppy worming and de-fleaing programmes, they’ve got the answers.
Talk to us about bringing your furry bundle of joy along to a clinic as early as two weeks after your puppy’s second vaccination, right up until he or she is a year old. Then come along and join the fun.
Book a Veterinary Nurse Clinic
At Cockburn Veterinary Group we are able to perform a large range of surgical techniques from routine neutering to more complex procedures such as keyhole (laparoscopic) surgery, gut and bladder surgery, tumour removal, and orthopaedic surgery. Kostas, one of our experienced vets is currently studying for a specialist qualification in orthopaedic surgery and is able to perform more complex bone fracture repairs and joint surgeries.
Your pet’s safety is of paramount importance to us and that’s why we often recommend performing blood tests, which we can run in our extensive in-house laboratory. This allows us to ensure your pet’s kidneys and liver are functioning appropriately before they have an anaesthetic. We are also able to administer intravenous fluids (a drip) on the day of the operation to support your pet whilst they are undergoing surgery.
While your pet is under general anaesthetic they will be monitored by our veterinary and veterinary nursing teams, one of whom, Maxine, our deputy head veterinary nurse, has a specialist veterinary nursing certificate in anaesthesia and analgesia. Our team will be also using the latest multimodal monitoring equipment to keep your pet safe.
It is important that your pet is kept as pain-free as possible during surgery and our team will administer the best pain relieving treatments and monitoring methods to make sure this happens.
We know that regular, accessible preventative health care can make a real difference to keeping your pet healthy and happy. That’s why we offer a full range of cat, dog and rabbit vaccinations.
We believe annual cat vaccinations and dog vaccinations, along with a vet check-up from our Coalville vets practice are an essential part of keeping your furry friend healthy for life: head to toe and nose to tail. As a client, you’re as important to us as the companions we care for: have your pet vaccinated with us every 12 months and we guarantee you ongoing access to our emergency service.
Starter Vaccinations for Cats & Dogs
Our vaccination courses start from only £42.84 for Kittens, and £51.79 for Puppies
Kittens: Flu and Enteritis – £42.84 / Flu, Enteritis and Leukaemia – £60.84
Puppies: Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvovirus and Leptospirosis – £51.79
Junior Starter Pack
Get the Junior Starter Pack, designed for kittens and puppies under 12 months of age, which for just £80, includes all this:
- A course of injections covering Flu, Enteritis and Leukaemia for kittens. And Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvovirus and Leptospirosis in puppies
- Flea and worm protection for 2 months
- One month of unlimited consultations
Spread the cost of your puppy or kitten’s starter vaccinations, and receive a whole range of further routine healthcare and great benefits with the Junior Paws Club
- We’ll vaccinate your rabbit each year for both diseases using a combined vaccine ahead of the summer months when fleas, midges and mosquitoes are most active.
- We can give the first rabbit vaccination at just five weeks of age when it’s still a kit (youngster).
- Pregnant does or breeding bucks require a different vaccination routine for both diseases so please speak to your vet.
- If you also have cats they must to be treated for fleas to prevent any cross-infection.
Save money on your pets' vaccinations – year-round
If you need to book a vaccination, you can do this online via our appointments page by clicking the button below. Alternatively, call the practice on 01530 836654 and we will be happy to help.
X-ray & Ultrasound
We believe that it’s important to have the most up-to-date equipment to hand to help us diagnose what is wrong with your pet when they are ill, and to help us treat them. That’s why our Coalville veterinary practice is kitted out with the latest digital Xray machines to allow us to take both general and dental radiographs; a modern ultrasound machine; and a range of endoscopes.
From checking for broken legs to looking for bladder stones or objects your pet may have swallowed in their tummy, Xrays can be a really helpful tool. Some materials like plastic or clothing such as socks may not show up on Xray when they have been swallowed and we can use special techniques, such as barium meals in these cases. Sometimes we need to take Xrays of unusual animals, such as this tortoise, which had problems laying eggs.
Our ultrasound scanner uses sound waves emitted at a high frequency which we cannot hear to create an image of the organs inside the body. Fortunately having an ultrasound scan performed is not painful so these are usually carried out without either sedation or anaesthesia. Ultrasounds can be used for a range of internal examinations from checking vital organs such as the kidneys, liver, bladder, spleen and heart to looking for happy events like pregnancy!
We also have a wide range of endoscopes available. These long, thin, flexible tubes, which have a camera and light source at one end allow us to look inside areas of the body such as the nose, trachea (windpipe), oesophagus (throat) and stomach. We also use special rigid endoscopes for laparoscopic or keyhole surgery including taking internal biopsy samples and laparoscopic neutering.