I had two very enlightening conversations last week.
The first was from a frustrated ex- Cavalier owner who has been waiting over 12 months to get a Golden Retriever puppy. According to the breeders she’s talking to, she’s not even any closer.
The second was from the owner of a new (second) Golden Retriever puppy. She said that due to unprecedented demand, her breeder is only selling to people she’s sold to before.
Clearly, these two observations are flip sides of the same problem. So before I give you some suggestions, let’s look at what’s happening. Continue reading “Having Trouble Getting That Dog Breed? Think Laterally!”
Tearing or rupturing a cruciate ligament accounts for around 20% of the leg problems in dogs. That’s a massive risk, especially when you look at what’s needed to fix them.
That risk isn’t evenly spread either. Some dogs are much more likely to tear an ACL than others. Two of those four risks are under your control. Continue reading “What Causes Dogs To Tear Their Cruciate Ligament?”
If you have a Scottish Fold and this is the first time you are hearing of their problems, you are not to blame. Finding good information before you get a cat is not easy, as you have probably learned by now. Continue reading “What Cat Lovers Should Know About Scottish Folds”
My ear is always on the dog park and recently I heard something intriguing. The owner of a blue French Bulldog told me she had several people come up to give her the same unsolicited advice:
Continue reading “The Link Between Coat Colour & Skin Problems In Dogs”
Blue dogs have lots of skin problems
Everyone knows that having an overweight dog is bad. But how bad?
Twenty years ago, Purina demonstrated a two year reduction in lifespan in Labradors kept in a laboratory setting. Now a recent large study in the US has for the first time looked at common dog breeds in the home environment.
Here is what they found, in graphic form. Continue reading “Which Overweight Dogs Have Shorter Lives?”
It’s easy to forget how refreshing Grumpy Cat was when she first appeared. If something wasn’t as good as the hype, then there she was with perfect one liner to burst the bubble. Coming from a cat like her, who could argue?
Grumpy Cat will always be the queen of memes, and perhaps the most famous cat of our time. Until now, I’ve refrained from talking about her death. But hopefully enough time has passed, because there’s a story in it about the future of cats. Continue reading “The Death Of Grumpy Cat”
Trying to choose a puppy breed? There are lots of great reasons to choose certain dog breeds over others. Health should be one of these.
Of course, I would say that, wouldn’t I? I’m a vet after all. Continue reading “21 Healthy & Long Lived Dog Breeds”
Have a look at the figures above. Any legitimate dog rescue charity would dream of numbers like these.
These are what greyhound adopters reported in a recent study, and I’m not surprised. I see tremendous levels of satisfaction among greyhound owners. They are a genuine alternative for new dog owners. Continue reading “The Pros & Cons Of Greyhound Adoption”
We all know that different dog breeds can have very different lifespans. Here are the best figures we have from three recent English studies. Please read this first to help you understand the figures. Continue reading “How Long Do Dog Breeds Live?”
Thanks to my big mouth I was in trouble from the outset. As a litter of five 10kg puppies were brought in by the scruffs of their necks, all I had to do was shut up. Continue reading “Why Banning Dog Breeds Doesn’t Work”
Ever wondered how much it costs to keep different dog breeds?
Recently I saw a very unfortunate case. The dog was barely 12 months old and had already had LOTS of vet visits. The owners were at their wits end both emotionally and financially. It didn’t help when I said; ” That’s not uncommon for the breed”.
“How were we supposed to know?” they said. I had to agree there wasn’t an easy way. There should be. Continue reading “How Much Do Dog Breeds Cost To Keep?”
Most people can tell if a dog or cat is sick. It’s not too hard with ferrets either. All of these are predator species and have no reason to hide their illnesses.
Then there are the prey species, like rabbits, guinea pigs and birds. They deliberately hide signs of illness. They even pretend to eat! Most of the time what looks like ‘sudden death’ or a ‘heart attack’ is really the end of a long, slow illness we couldn’t see.
The good news is that you can tell. Here’s what to look for: Continue reading “How To Tell If Your Chicken Is Healthy”
Did you see the animals in this year’s Guinness World Records? That’s two of them above.
The world’s longest living pet cat was a Maine Coon called Ludo, who is a phenomenal 118.3cm long.
The world’s tallest living female dog was a 96.4cm Great Dane.
Why do these cute facts make all vets shudder? Continue reading “Is Breeding Bigger Better?”
Last week I discussed a better way to compare dog and human ages, and the lifespans of common dog breeds.
How can your dog do better than the average lifespan? Of course, avoiding risks & good veterinary care have a lot to do with it. But there’s also a lot you can do to improve their chances. Continue reading “How To Help Your Dog Live Longer”
If you prefer a quick answer, visit our online dog age calculator. Just plug in a number and it does the rest!
We’ve all heard the saying: “multiply your dog’s age by seven to get the human age.” Like most simple rules, there’s a lot wrong with that: Continue reading “How Old Is My Dog In Human Years?”
After the popularity of last week’s Genetic Diseases of Dogs, it’s only fair the cats get their own page. Information on breed disorders came from the Sydney University LIDA Cats database (no longer publicly available). Continue reading “What Diseases Does My Cat’s Breed Get?”
Most decisions to own a purebred dog are based entirely on positive aspects, like temperament, personality and lifestyle. These are important, but we should also focus on the negative, like what can go wrong. Continue reading “What Diseases Does My Dog’s Breed Get?”
Some people believe that genetic diseases are becoming more common in certain purebred dogs due to limited gene pools and close breeding. Regardless of whether this is true, genetic diseases are well-known and common and we should make ourselves aware of them. Read about diseases of cat breeds here.
Why are so many ginger cats male? What are the odds a ginger cat can be female? Continue reading “Myth 30: Ginger cats are always male”
Everyone says large dogs die sooner than small dogs. You hear it on the TV, in the park, and it’s been said as long as anyone can remember. Just google this blog’s title and you’ll see what I mean. But is it true? Continue reading “Do big dogs have shorter life spans?”
“Watch out. Those dogs are crazy, they bark and dig and destroy things.” This is what Daisy’s owner was warned when he told his friends he wanted a heeler.
Luckily for him and Daisy he didn’t listen and followed his instincts. And he is now able to enjoy one of the closest and happiest dog-owner relationships you will ever see. Read how he did it. Continue reading “Myth 25: Heelers, Kelpies and Collies are crazy”
Here I go again! Another unbearably cute puppy picture in the paper and all I can do is complain!
There’s no question that adorable images of a Shar Pei puppy and a Scottish Fold kitten from the Adelaide Advertiser melt the heart. So why do most vets see something different when we look at these pictures? Continue reading “Myth 23: Choosing a cute pet is harmless”