Puppy Preschool

Our very popular puppy preschool classes are run monthly. The Puppy classes are educational and fun, and incorporate training, socialisation and common behavioural issues.

Give your pup a flying start to life!

Puppy Preschool classes are informative for both owners and puppies. Classes are aimed at owner education and basic puppy training.

Puppy Preschool offers you a unique opportunity to introduce your puppy to many sights, sounds and experiences in a controlled and responsible way. They are a fun and informative way to help you begin the socialisation process in a safe environment and allow your puppy to meet others while still very young. Good socialisation is the best way to ensure a friendly, well-adjusted puppy.

All animals at the start of their lives experience what is known as the ‘sensitive development period’. During this time, they encounter the world for the first time – and learn to accept what they find. In puppies, this sensitive development period starts from birth and lasts until about 14 weeks of age. Anything a puppy experiences during this time will become part of its natural behavior. After this age, unfamiliar objects and experiences can cause a fearful response (sometimes extremely fearful) and can ultimately lead to aggression.
Puppy Preschool is designed for puppies between 8 and 16 weeks of age. Classes are taught using positive reinforcement where correct behavior is encouraged, rewarded and praised.

Topics covered include:

  • Puppy socialisation with people
  • Puppy play
  • Sounds
  • Behavioural problems
  • Play and exercise
  • Nutrition
  • Microchipping
  • Fleas and ticks
  • Worming and vaccinations

To register your interest, please phone us on (03) 55 722 552.


A new three-year vaccination for dogs

It has been common practice to vaccinate dogs and cats every year. The ‘annual booster’ has been an important part of a pet’s annual health program for many years. These vaccinations have provided many animals with good protection against the potentially deadly diseases including parvo, hepatitis and distemper. The widespread use of these vaccines have kept diseases such as parvo at a low level in the dog population of Hamilton and surrounding areas.

Recently, a new vaccine has become available that reliably provides 3 years of protection for these three diseases. This new vaccine has been made to provide a longer period of immunity than the currently available vaccines which are registered for 1 year of protection. This vaccine will be suitable for many dogs, particularly farm/working dogs, and those with little exposure to other dogs.

Dogs which require protection for kennel cough, such as those that frequent areas used by other dogs, and dogs that go into boarding kennels, will still require an annual vaccination. The kennel cough vaccine gives only a 12 month period of immunity. For these animals, the new vaccine means that you no longer have to vaccinate against all the diseases every year, reducing the cost of vaccination and reducing exposure of the dog to unnecessary vaccines.

Even though many dogs will benefit from the new 3 year vaccine, Hamilton Vetcare continues to recommend annual health checks for your dog. It’s important to remember that 1 year of your dog’s life is equivalent to approximately 7 years of our lives. Early detection and prevention of diseases such as kidney disease, heart disease and diabetes is only possible with regular health checks. These regular health checks are especially important for mature and senior pets.

For more information on this new vaccination for dogs, or to find out whether your dog can receive this 3 yearly vaccination, call into Hamilton Vetcare at 97 French Street, or phone our friendly staff on 55722552.

Orthopaedic Surgery

Hamilton Vetcare offers a wide range of surgical procedures. Orthopaedic (bone) surgery is often required for cats and dogs involved in road traffic accidents. Surgery to repair fractured bones, replace dislocated joints and repair damaged ligaments and tendons are commonly performed at Hamilton Vetcare. Orthopaedic surgery is also carried out on animals with joint problems such as ruptured cruciate ligaments of the knee joint. Dr Scott Shrive has a special interest in small animal orthopaedic surgery. Dr Scott has attended post graduate training from AOVet, an international orthopaedic organisation of leading specialists in veterinary orthopaedic surgery, who provide specialty training in the practise of surgical skills and recent techniques in veterinary fracture management. Dr Scott has practised in first opinion veterinary practice for 13 years which has ensured a wide range of experience in dealing with a wide variety of fractures and joint trauma.

Tightrope Cruciate repair

Canine cruciate ligament rupture in dogs is the most common cause of hind limb lameness. It can affect any dog however is more common in the active large breeds. Hamilton Vetcare treats many cruciate ligament tears in dogs every year. Our preferred technique is using the Tightrope implant technique. Tightrope repair provides a minimally invasive and improved method for stabilisation of the cruciate ligament. Tightrope repair offers an implant with superior strength and stiffness designed specifically for ligament repair in small, medium and large breed dogs. The implant has properties that make it stronger and less prone to failure than any other suture material currently being used for cranial cruciate ligament reconstruction.

Soft tissue surgery

Hamilton Vetcare’s recent new build included the development of a full surgical suite with positive pressure ventilation ensuring the highest standards for surgical sterility. Our fully equipped surgery and high level of expertise allows us to perform most soft tissue surgical procedures that your pet may require. Soft tissue surgeries include procedures such as desexing, exploratory laporotomies, caesareans, lump removals, biopsies, wound stitch-ups, removal of intestinal foreign bodies and more.

State of the art digital x-ray

Hamilton Vetcare has invested in state of the art Digital Xray technology. Not only do we see incredible detail on the body part concerned, but the information is then instantly available to send to referral vets for specialist interpretation if required.

This fast and efficient technology allows accurate and instant diagnosis of your pets condition. 


What is a microchip? How does it work?

A microchip is a permanent method of electronic identification. The chip itself is very small – about the size of a grain of rice – and is implanted subcutaneously (just under the skin) between the shoulder blades at the back of your pet’s neck. Each chip has a unique number that is detected using a microchip scanner. The microchip number is recorded on a microchip database registry with details about the animal and owner. Pet owners need to ensure their contact details are recorded on the database against their pet’s microchip number. Should your pet stray or become lost, vets, animal shelters and local councils can scan your pet for a microchip and contact you via the database.

It is very important to keep your contact details up to date on the database so that if you move house or change your phone number you will still be contactable in the event of your pet becoming lost/straying.

If a pet is transferred to a new owner, the new owner must ensure their contact details are recorded on the database.

Who do I contact if I need to change my contact details with my pet’s microchip registry database?

The easiest way to change your contact details is to search http://www.petaddress.com.au/ using your pet’s microchip number. Petaddress will redirect you to the database that lists your pet’s microchip number so that you may contact them directly. Some registries provide Change of Address forms on their websites.
If you cannot find your pet’s registry by searching on petaddress please contact your vet or microchip implanter (if you are in NSW your local council may also be able to direct you) to find out which database your pet is listed in. Currently there are 5 private microchip registries and one state government registry:

  1. Australasian Animal Registry
  2. Central Animal Records
  3. Petsafe
  4. Pet Register
  5. HomeSafeID
  6. NSW government registry – the NSW Companion Animal Registry

Is microchipping my pet cat or dog compulsory?

In some states microchipping is mandatory for cats and dogs (please see the article below ‘Is microchipping mandatory for cats and dogs?’. Ideally your pet cat or dog should be microchipped prior to you purchasing or adopting your pet. This is the only way to effectively trace the origin of the cat/dog. However, if your pet is not yet microchipped then we recommend that you make an appointment with your vet to have your pet microchipped (even in those states where microchipping is not yet compulsory). Some local councils and animal welfare organisations can also microchip pets.

Is microchipping painful?

Microchipping is a quick (only takes a few seconds), safe and simple procedure and causes little discomfort. Some puppies and kittens may flinch or yelp as the chip is implanted, however the pain is minimal and short-lived and most animals will forget about it very quickly. Microchipping is very important for re-uniting lost pets with their owners. Should your pet go missing you are far more likely to be reunited if he or she is microchipped. The benefits of microchipping in terms of identifying a lost animal and reuniting them with their owner far outweigh any minimal, momentary discomfort.

When should microchipping be done?

Ideally your pet cat or dog should be microchipped prior to you purchasing or adopting your pet. This is the only way to effectively trace the origin of a cat or dog. However, if your pet is not yet microchipped then we recommend that you make an appointment with your vet to have your pet microchipped (even in those states where microchipping is not yet compulsory). Some local councils and animal welfare organisations can also microchip pets.

Where can I microchip my pet?

Only authorised microchip implanters are permitted to microchip pets. Vets and animal welfare organisations can microchip pets. Some local councils also organise microchipping days.

Dog and cat behavioural consultations

Hamilton Vetcare offers behavioural consultations for dogs and cats, with behavioural problems ranging from ‘bad manners’ to complex anxiety issues.

The main problems that we work with are anxiety related problems, not training problems.

Early intervention and treatment will help to improve the outcome for you and your pet. The main behaviour problems we deal with are anxiety related. These behaviours are often irrational, disruptive to the household and detrimental to the health and welfare of the pet. Some examples of anxiety related problems include:


  • Aggression
  • Barking
  • Separation anxiety
  • Noise and thunderstorm phobias
  • Fear/anxiety
  • Compulsive behaviours – eg. tail chasing
  • Destructive behaviours


  • Urine spraying
  • House soiling
  • Aggression
  • Fear/anxiety

Farm animal service

Hamilton Vetcare provides farm animal services including brucellosis testing, footrot advice and eradication programs, sheep worm egg monitoring, disease investigations and herd health.

Advanced medicine including Chemotherapy

What is Chemotherapy?
Chemotherapy refers to the use of drugs that are used to treat cancer.

The aims of using chemotherapy in pets is to improve quality of life and increase life expectancy.

How does chemotherapy work?
Chemotherapy works by damaging rapidly growing cells. Cancer cells are rapidly growing and often cannot repair the damage caused by chemotherapy drugs.

Will my pet have any adverse effects?
All chemotherapy drugs have the potential to produce adverse side effects. However, due to the lower doses used in pets, the side effects that can occur in pets are usually not as severe as those that occur in humans. It is important to know what the possible side effects of each drug are so that you will know what to expect. As the pet’s owner, you have an important role in recognizing the side effects, managing them at home whenever possible, and alerting your veterinarian if the side effects persist.

Side effects occur because chemotherapy targets all rapidly growing cells within the body, not just those of the cancer or tumor. These rapidly growing cells include the bone marrow, which continually produces blood cells, and the lining cells in the intestinal tract. As a result, two common side effects of chemotherapy are low white blood cell and platelet counts, as well as diarrhoea, vomiting, and loss of appetite. Pets rarely lose their hair however as human cancer patients do.

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