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Poisoning case sparks salt lamp warning
The cat ingested toxic levels of salt simply through licking a Himalayan salt lamp.
Cat ingested toxic levels of salt by licking the lamp 

Vets in New Zealand have shared a warning on the dangers of Himalayan salt lamps in the home after a cat nearly died from salt poisoning.

The cat, Ruby, was presented to First Vets in Whanganui, with various neurological signs, including difficulty walking, impaired senses and inability to eat or drink.

Blood samples revealed extremely high levels of sodium and chloride. After ruling out other conditions, vets asked Ruby’s owners if there was any way she could have ingested a large amount of salt. It was then that they realised she had taken an interest in a salt lamp in the lounge.

She had ingested toxic levels of salt simply through licking the lamp. However, it was the first time the practice had seen this occur in a cat.

Vets began supportive therapy to gradually bring the patient’s sodium and chloride levels down to normal, with the help of intravenous fluids and potassium supplementation.

The practice posted an update on its Facebook page yesterday: ‘We are pleased to report that Ruby’s neurological signs resolved and her blood sodium and chloride levels returned to normal today.’

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RSPCA braced for ‘hectic hedgehog month’

News Story 1
 The RSPCA says that it is bracing itself for a ‘hectic hedgehog month’ after calls to the charity about the creatures peaked this time last year.

More than 10,000 calls about hedgehogs were made to the RSPCA’s national helpline in 2018, 1,867 of which were in July. This compares with just 133 calls received in February of the same year.

Evie Button, the RSPCA’s scientific officer, said: “July is our busiest month for hedgehogs. Not only do calls about hedgehogs peak, but so do admissions to our four wildlife centres as members of the public and our own officers bring in orphaned, sick or injured animals for treatment and rehabilitation.” 

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ASF traces found in seized meat at NI airport

More than 300kg of illegal meat and dairy products were seized at Northern Ireland’s airports in June, DAERA has revealed.

A sample of these were tested at the Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute, resulting in the detection of African swine fever DNA fragments.

DAERA said that while the discovery does not pose a significant threat to Northern Ireland’s animal health status, it underlines the importance of controls placed on personal imports of meat and dairy products. Holidaymakers travelling overseas are being reminded not to bring any animal or plant products back home.