October 2021

Had a long standing client come to me to scan his bitch day 26 from ovulation a few weeks ago, there were no sign of any fetal sacs, but I said if the progesterone test had not been 100% accurate, he would ideally need to have her rescanned again in a week. Next morning he sent me a text message to say his friend had suggested they go to their local fertility clinic as the scanner there would be able to give him an accurate answer yes or no. So off he went and low and behold they firstly took bloods to determine pregnancy and then did an ultrasound and saw three puppy sacs. I asked him if he would come over to me again the next day for me to double check, although I was sure my machine would not have missed anything. There was no sign of any pregnancy, same as two days previously. She was never pregnant in the first place.

Three times this last week I have had new breeders bring their girls in for scanning, having had bloods taken at a fertility clinic by someone who is not a vet. AI has been carried out, and they have handed over between them, over £3.5K in stud fees etc. Not one of the bitches were pregnant, no contract in place to secure a repeat mating and they were all told, pregnancy was guaranteed. I don't know what is going on as breeders are being asked to pay a 'holding fee' to secure the stud dog, what on earth is that all about?

September 2021

So today someone called me after their bitch had delivered 8 puppies through the night and they had only seen 6 placenta's. They had spoken with the vet who said it wasn't an emergency, but asked if I would scan her to check all ok. I could see what I believed were retained placentas, although I am obviously not a vet and cannot diagnose. So sent images to the owners for them to show their vet. They called three different vets, none were concerned, none would give her oxytocin as they said it was dangerous, nor would they give antibiotics. They said they would call back later in the evening to get an update. Roll on 26 hours after last pup was born, emergency vet said she needed oxytocin. Owner was naturally annoyed and questionned why she had not been offered this earlier. I suggested she call my vet who I have referred several clients to in the past who saw her after 10pm at their 24 hour hospital, administered oxytocin and a five day course of antibiotics (Synulox are generally considered to be safe when mum is feeding puppies).

Last week I scanned a dog to check for pregnancy and noticed what looked like fluid filled sacs, I had an idea what I thought it was (pyometra), but asked the owner to go to their own vets armed with my scan images and to tell them I saw something unusual on the scan. There was no sign of pregnancy, but the bitch had a closed pyometra infection and was rushed into theatre, she is now doing well, but it could have been a very different story.

Due to yet more timewasters, some who actually turn up to their appointment and then say they have no money with them, or can't afford to pay and can they pay next week (I am still waiting....), I will now be taking the full name and address of all clients when booking an appointment.

January 2021

So back in lockdown and yet more timewasters.

One client who phoned said she had been let down by a mobile scanner in the Cannock area, don't know who this is, but have had a few complaints about someone in that area. Asked if I would go to her, and I am not doing mobile scans during covid restrictions as I don't feel comfortable going into people's homes and crawling round on the floor chasing their dog. So then she said she couldn't leave the house because she was self isolating, not sure what part of self isolating she didn't understand, but no one can go into your house either!

Then someone else, didn't trust the information they had been given by a mobile scanner in the Redditch area, made an appointment to come and see me as I had been recommended, within a few hours cancelled the appointment as had found someone else local who would do a mobile home scan, then messaged me later asking for advice and asked me to look at the scan.

If you want my advice and experience, please come and see me first, pay cheap, pay twice. I am not expensive, but you sometimes have to put yourselves out and travel to get the experience.

 

November 2020

Yet more timewasters, one with no name who sent me this message

'Good morning, I found your mobile number on a website about ultra sounding for dogs? I have an 18 month old shihtzu, she has had her cycle and we mated her with my dads dog (proven), they were together none stop for 23 days because it being my girls first time I didn’t want to miss any day, they did do the deed but I can’t be 100% they tied because I didn’t watch them all of the time. However, we’re on day 27 of her heat, and she’s acting so different. She’s not eating properly, she’s just picking, she’s a little snappy (not vicious) she’s so clingy to me, she’s on my lap as we speak and I’m just a little worried. I’m quite local to dudley, I live in Tipton, dy4 and I was wondering, when the day comes she can be scanned, can you scan her please?'

and Jade with Kiki who booked an appointment on the morning for 2pm and didn't turn up - how can you forget
within a few hours, or did you just not have the decency to let me know?

Timewasters this week
I am getting so fed up I am going to start naming and shaming these people

Shannon Field
Scarlett from Redditch
Joanne Field

Not updated this blog for quite a while, but here we are again facing another National lockdown.

I am still getting timewasters, please do not book an appointment if you have no intention of keeping it.
I am not a walk in centre, I book the time in my day to see you and your dog. I feel like naming and shaming
some of these people, like Scarlett from Redditch. I knew from the outset she would not attend, and
even called to check an hour before, yes she still wanted the appointment. When she was 15 minutes
late and I call to check if she is lost I get the call cut off. I am not charging extortionate prices here,
in fact my prices have not changed in the last 7 years, but if you want a cheap mobile scanner
who has no experience or knowledge, that is not me. Pay cheap, pay twice when you need
a second opinion.

During the last few months I have seen a number of singleton puppies, and each and every one of them have had problems with the vets not wanting to intervene. I scheduled an elective section when I had my singleton puppy with no problems, but now vets would rather see how the bitch progresses. You really do need to be on the ball as there is a 90% chance you will encounter problems.

 
Ultrasound scan of singleton puppy above

 

One case was a Yorkie, the owner was so excited that her dog was having a puppy as she wanted to keep it
for herself. She bought her back to be scanned several times, and on day 70 contacted me to say she had
not gone into labour, and could I check up to see if the puppy was ok. We both breathed a sigh of relief
when we saw the puppy's heartbeat and how active she was. Owner took her to a different vets who carried out
a reverse progesterone test, but still said she wasn't ready and scheduled a section three days later. The
bitch went into labour on the day the section was due, owner called the vet who said to leave her and see
how she progressed, and very sadly the puppy was born sleeping.

The following week I had another very similar case, this time with a Labrador. The owner had been told
that she would be fine, as Labrador's delivered puppies easily. She didn't, she had been having contractions
most of the day, the owners vet said she was pushing the puppy into the birth canal and it could be another
5 - 7 days! Long story short I recommended another vet, who said to rush her in immediately. Puppy
was distressed and so was the mum and it was touch and go if both of them would survive.
Thankfully they did, and both mum and puppy are now doing really well.

I have had three bitches within the last two months who have not only retained placentas (see image below) but also
retained puppies. One poor bitch had three retained puppies, unfortunately two were born later sleeping.
When your bitch has finished whelping, if she is distressed, still having contractions, or you have not
seen a placenta come away for each puppy, please get her checked out with an ultrasound.

I am still getting calls asking me to scan bitches at around 21 days gestation, honestly, it really
isn't worth it, and I don't believe in wasting people's time and money. 100% accuracy at 21 days is
impossible, especially if your bitch had not been progesterone tested and you know the exact date
of ovulation.

See one of my own bitch's scan journey here - obviously when I started scanning her I didn't
know if she was pregnant or not, she went on to have five puppies. She was progesterone
tested by Idexx, who I know are accurate.

Talking of progesterone testing, this MUST be done by a vet, not someone purporting to be
a vet, not someone who offers a scanning service and calls themself a fertility clinic, they
should NOT be drawing blood, but I know plenty of them are, and I know people are complaining
when things are going wrong as they often come to me, and other scanners, for a second opinion.

So back to lockdown - until I am told otherwise, I will still be available for scans, but only if you
can get to my premises, no mobile scans I am afraid. I have just purchased a new easily portable
mobile scan machine, same quality images as the one I have been using at home, and if necessary
I can use this outside without anyone coming into the house.

One owner per dog if you come into the house, and we must all wear masks and use anti bac gel.

Please ring me when you get here and I will come and open the gate to save you touching anything.

Stay safe everyone.

June 2020

A couple of months ago I scanned a bitch for pregnancy, and I referred her to the vet as it looked to me like she had the start of a pyometra uterus infection (first image on left below).

The owner was herself a vet nurse and got her checked out. Vet said all was ok, and he thought the empty sacs presented on the ultrasound image I took were puppy sacs and she was reabsorbing.

Three days later the bitch was rushed into surgery, she had to have her uterus removed as he had a pyometra womb infection, this condition can be fatal if not treated - see image below right.



Not kept up to date with my blog due to other commitments and the problems we have been facing with COVID19.

Anyone who has been to me will know that I will go out of my way to fit an appointment around you and give you as much advice as I can, both on the day of your scan, and at any time after if you are a little anxious over the whelping, or not sure if you should seek the advice of a vet.

I don't know if someone local is scamming me or not, but to just not turn up to a pre aranged appointment and let me know you cannot attend is a tad annoying.

Please, please, if you cannot make your appointment, let me know, even if it is last minute as there is nothing worse than hanging around waiting for someone to arrive, and even worse when someone else is waiting for an appointment and you can't fit them in.

Thank you

 

July 2019


Had an interesting scan last week on a bitch who had stuvite crystals in her bladder, unfortunately I could see no sign of puppy sacs, and she was referred to her vet for further treatment.

In the last week I have had no less than six calls from owners, four outside of my immediate area, wanting me to give advice on scans performed by other technicians. It would be unethical for me to comment on someone else's work, I am happy to give a second opinion if you want me to scan your bitch, but will not comment on images and videos done on a mobile phone and sent to me.

Today two people have been let down and have come to me for an urgent appointment - always make sure the person you are using is DEFRA trained and reliable with good feedback. I have seen scans performed by people who have merely purchased a machine online, had no formal training and set themselves up in business offering cheap scans and don't know the difference between a bowel and a puppy sac.

April 2019

I am really disappointed in the number of clients who book an appointment and don't turn up without having the courtesy to
let me know. It is so frustrating when I make plans around appointments I have during the day.

February 2019

I am having a few clients now who have been told their bitches are pregnant, one lady actually sat up all night for four nights waiting for her bitch to deliver, what turned out to be non existent puppies. After showing me the scan that was carried out at 26 days, I confirmed that the sacs she was told were puppies, was indeed bowel.

Not all ultrasound technicians are suitably trained, there are a few in the area offering scans as early as 23 days, and use a 'smart wand' which is used in conjunction with a mobile phone or ipad.

December 2018

I take great pride in my work and the service I provide to my clients, both human and furry. I don't overcharge (average cost for your vet to do an ultrasound is between £70 and £140 plus VAT and you often don't get to stop with your dog and see the puppies on the ultrasound screen either) and I am the cheapest 'trained' ultrasound technician in the immediate area. I never rush anyone, and allow plenty of time for pets to settle and give clients time to ask questions about the ultrasound process.

I have spent many hours on the telephone to clients, some throughout the night, when a bitch is in labour and they just need a friendly voice at the end of the telephone. I rushed out at 9am a few months ago to scan a bitch, who I had not previously scanned, where the owner had been told by an untrained ultrasound technician she was having three puppies, and she had only had one. The owner wanted to check all was ok and she did appear to have a retained placenta so sent some images to his vet for further investigation.


I have lent out my whelping box, heat pad, puppy pen, and other whelping items, and given away vet bed where the owner was unprepared. I have carried out free scans when owners get dates mixed up and even when owners come to me saying it was unplanned, they have no money and turn up again six months later with the same bitch and another unplanned pregnancy.....................

So I really do appreciate clients letting me know when they can't make an appointment. I have my own dogs to care for too, I care for my father, and a disabled husband, and will always work round clients for the best time to suit them.

If you have no intention of keeping your appointment, please don't book it. I appreciate things happen, but please let me know, even a short notice cancellation is better than none at all. I am getting wise to all the excuses I get though, and I am now keeping a list of people who will not be offering an appointment to in the future and will be referred to a vet at great expense.

Thank you

 

Julie

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November 2018

If ever in doubt that your bitch has not finished whelping and appears to be having small contractions, please consider having a scan to check. I have been out numerous times to check on bitches and all have been ok, but today found one with a dead puppy still inside, too late for Oxytocin and bitch is now having an emergency C section after already delivering 7 puppies naturally

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Sepember 2018

The Animal Welfare Act (2006) in England is about to undergo some changes which all breeders need to be aware of.

WEF 1st October 2018, anyone who breeds and sells three or more litters within any twelve month period, will be classed as a business, and will need a license. If you are unsure as to whether or not you need a licence, you should contact your local authority licensing department,
you can find your local Council's website HERE.

KENNEL CLUB ANNOUNCEMENT RE CHANGES HERE

The main legislative changes being made are:

Please read the FAQ which includes a section 'Conversely “Breeders who breed a small number of puppies (i.e. fewer than three litters per year), and sell them without making a profit” are deemed to be out of the scope of licensing.'

I have spoken to DEFRA and this is their response.....

The regulations are not intended to catch hobbyists. There is a business test to determine whether someone selling puppies is a ‘business’ compared to breeding them as a hobby. If you are not breeding more than three litters in a 12 month period, and you are not making a profit off of them, then you would not need to have a licence.

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31st August

I had a call today from a lady over in Birmingham who's bitch I had scanned a few weeks ago. A first time litter for both owner and bitch, who was scanned for two puppies. Gave owner a list of what she would need and the signs to look out for when her bitch went into labour. First thing this morning I had a text to call as soon as I got up. Bitch had delivered one puppy and all was well, but there were no signs of another one. Now as the scan had only been done two weeks previously and was well onto into the pregnancy I was pretty sure on seeing more than one, which could not have been re-absorbed at this late stage. Told her to wait a few more hours, and sure enough an hour later puppy number two arrived - but no afterbirth. Told her to let the mum break the cord or do it for her, and if the afterbirth didn't follow soon after to call the vet. A quick visit to the vet and an oxyctocin injection soon expelled the afterbirth and bitch was soon back home with her puppies. Lovely to have some good news for a change.

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15th August


Over the last two weeks I have had five people book appointments and not turn up. Two of them were made for the same day, one made at 5.30pm for 7pm, and still didn't turn up, when I eventually got in touch with them around 7.45pm they were apparently still waiting for a lift.

Lots of people are contacting me for mobile scans, some as far as an hour away - please note that an hour each way, and 30 minutes with you means I usually block out my afternoon and can do no more appointments that day, and my price for a mobile scan will not be £20. You are always welcome to come to me.

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July 2018

16th July 2018 - I have a few clients who book and don't turn up, and don't have the courtesy to let me know, but this was a new one. If it had not have been my birthday, and I gave up the chance to go out to lunch, I may not have been so angry - I had a call to go over to Walsall to scan a bitch. I had already sent a text to the telephone number that booked the appointment first thing in the morning, as I always do with mobile scans - I set off with plenty of time to spare, but due to the traffic it took me almost an hour to get there. I had stopped en route to send another text to say I may be 10 minutes late - this is where alarm bells started ringing. I had a response to say they didn't know anything about an ultrasound scan for a dog. I confirmed the number I had was correct, but having no other telephone number to contact anyone, I had no choice but to carry on as someone may be expecting me. How wrong was I..........the lady at the house I had the address and post code for did not even have a dog......apparently. So with immediate effect, any new customers requiring a mobile scan will be required to pay a £10 deposit at the time of booking, to at least cover my fuel.

and so it continues...........another client, who has re arranged her appointment no less than four times, has today called to say due to personal circumstances she no longer requires a scan. I initally thought something wrong with the bitch, but no, apparently the breeder of her bitch has told her she is definitely in whelp and a scan is not required. Which brings me to the case below.......

27th July 2018 - Sad visit today to a bitch who had delivered a puppy which had got stuck in the birth canal and born sleeping. I have scanned this bitch on two previous occasions, and she was empty, but this time the owners felt sure she was pregnant, and with work commitments let the pregnancy run it's course. They called me this afternoon to ask if I would go out and check her as after two hours of delivering the first puppy, there were no signs of any more, and unfortunately the first puppy was indeed a singleton. The dam was still quite distressed and wouldn't let anyone take the puppy away from her, which was heartbreaking.

I feel it is very important to at least know if your bitch is not only pregnant, but there is more than one. 9/10 singletons result in a C section as the bitch often doesn't produce enough hormones to trigger labour. Singleton puppy's can also grow too large to be delivered normally and not only risk the life of the puppy, but also the dam.