It’s 6:30am. There’d still be another 30 minutes before your alarm if another sort of alarm wasn’t already going off. Incessantly.
It’s hard to ignore a cat when they want something. It’s what makes them a great first-time pet. However, being woken up too early is no laughing matter. So welcome to my new support group: Friends & Family Of Pushy Cats. Continue reading “How To Stop Cats Waking You Up Early”
A cat with dandruff may sound funny, but it’s not. So please no Head and Shoulders jokes. In a minute you’re going to see that none of the causes are trivial. Continue reading “Help! My Cat Has Dandruff”
The picture below is Grouch. I guess he’s called that because of what he was, not what he is. Because what he is now is a house cat. Continue reading “Caring For Feral & Stray Cats”
Your cat might need your help. Imagine if there was a disease that affected two thirds of cats over their life, but vets rarely diagnosed it. That’s the reality for pancreatitis in cats. Continue reading “Pancreatitis In Cats”
Burying a dog or cat is an important part of the grieving process for many people. It certainly was for me. So as someone who advises it, and has done it, I was annoyed to see “Why you shouldn’t bury your pet in the backyard” featured on my ABC.
It’s the classic case of sitting in an ivory tower making the rest of Australia feel guilty for doing what comes naturally. It also says some fairly silly things. So before I give you some simple tips for a proper home burial, let’s clear them up. Continue reading “Can I Bury My Dog Or Cat At Home?”
I’m known for supporting clients who use raw diets. Done well, they should add to the health of your pet.
However, there are some persistent myths that get in the way. One of the most common is the idea that offal and organ meats are essential ingredients. As useful as they can be, (even with vegan diets!), they aren’t a cure all. Continue reading “The Myths About Offal, Taurine & Raw Diets”
Let me tell you a story that shows what we’re up against.
I met a very perplexed feral cat researcher recently. In his study area the cats generally hunt and eat one common mammal. However, suddenly the population of that species crashed.
There were lots of other tasty critters still hopping around, some of which look nearly the same. Despite this, the cats began to starve. Continue reading “Getting Cats To Eat Raw Chicken Necks”
I saw another one last week: a cat I knew with an owner I didn’t. “My daughter is pregnant and she’s afraid the cat might smother her baby.”
I didn’t argue; as a father I know how strong the urge to protect our children is. But it got me thinking: does it ever happen? And what about other dangers like toxoplasmosis? Continue reading “Do Cats Ever Really Smother Babies?”
For a variety of reasons, lip and mouth problems are common in both kittens and cats. Most are easy to fix, but beware: they are hard to tell apart and some are extremely serious. Here are the essential facts for cat owners. Continue reading “Lip Sores & Mouth Ulcers In Cats”
What do the diseases we protect your cat from actually look like?
Click here to see vaccination protocols for cats or continue reading to learn about these important illnesses. Continue reading “Explained: Cat Flu, Feline Enteritis & FIV”
I wonder how many people have regretted those fateful words: “I’m going to get a kitten to keep my cat company”.
You see, cats aren’t like us. As a highly social species, we tend to assume all the others are the same. But while cats can learn to be friends, it isn’t natural and it almost never happens in the wild. Continue reading “How To Introduce A Kitten To A Cat”
Finding it hard to introduce a cat to another cat? Well before you feel like a failure, try this experiment… Continue reading “How To Get Two Cats To Like Each Other”
Vomiting can be a symptom of a wide variety of illnesses in cats, many of which are featured in this article. Vomiting can also be normal, so let’s start by deciding when to go to the vet. Continue reading “Help! My Cat Is Vomiting”
So often when an owner says “I can’t get my cat in the carrier” I think “It’s no wonder with the one you’ve got”. Then other times I see cat carriers completely fail and put cats at risk.
Here’s our guide to buying a cat box that’s not only easy to use but safe to be in. Continue reading “How Choose A Good Cat Carrier”
At least once a week someone calls us saying “I can’t get my cat in the carrier”.
While it’s definitely not easy, you can do it. The right technique will not only improve your cat’s vet care but will also be easier and less stressful for everybody. Continue reading “6 Ways To Get A Cat In A Carrier Box”
I’ve been a vet for a quarter century now. Over that time I’ve seen just about everything go wrong that can.
Pet disasters tend to go along recurring themes. If you know what they are, you have an excellent chance to avoid them. Some might be upsetting, but I hope you can see the benefit in thinking about them now. Continue reading “Causes Of Sudden Death In Australian Pets”
‘Emergency Care’ (details below)
If A Dog Or Cat Is Bitten By A Snake
- Stay calm and keep your pet still and quiet
- Do not try to catch or kill the snake
- Do not wait until symptoms develop
- Immediately travel to an emergency vet, calling on the way if possible
Now dive deeper… Continue reading “Snake Bite In Dogs & Cats”
The poor kitties. Arthritis in cats is a disease that manages to be severe, unseen, unresearched and very common all at the same time. Continue reading “What Can I Give My Cat For Arthritis?”
Around half of the wet cat foods being sold in my local supermarket are unbalanced. There’s usually no warning on the label to say so. (see list below).
Did you know this? I didn’t until recently, and it’s my job to know, so I’m guessing you didn’t either. Continue reading “Unbalanced Cat Foods You’re Not Told About”
Hair loss is a good example of how the skin problems of cats are different from dogs. It’s got a lot to do with their special grooming behaviour. Continue reading “Losing Hair, Overgrooming or Over Licking in Cats”
There are four key differences between most commercial cat foods and the diets that cats have adapted to eat in the wild: Continue reading “Making A Wild Food For Your Cat”
Update 2021: still no news on whether the findings of the Inquiry will ever make it into law.
Australia lacks any form of oversight regarding pet food safety or basic standards of hygiene or quality.
Australia also lacks any way to report faults in pet foods. Mistakes happen even with good brands, but attempts in the past by individual vets to highlight them have invariably led to threats of ruinous legal action against the vet involved.
I provided evidence at the public hearings into the safety of pet food on Tuesday the 28th of August, 2018 in Sydney. Here you can read my oral and written submissions.
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I went there to put forward the demands of ordinary pet owners. You can be sure that industry was well-represented but what about you? We needed the opinions of ordinary consumers and average Australian pet owners. Continue reading “The Senate Pet Food Safety Inquiry & You”
Elsewhere on this site we’ve published the evidence for which foods dogs and cats are allergic to. Now we’ll show you how to figure it out for your own pet. This even works for a mouse!
Diagnosis of Food Allergies
The bad news is that there is no simple test. Popular blood test kits are not reliable enough.
The good news is that you can do it at home. It’s called an elimination diet. You have two choices:
Continue reading “Pet Food Allergy Testing | Elimination Diets”
- Buy one off-the-shelf
- Make it yourself (this is preferred if possible, see below)
Emergency Care’ (details below)
When A Cat Tries To Pee But Nothing Happens
- Many male cats trying to pee have urinary obstructions
- Seek emergency vet help ASAP if your cat cannot pass urine
- Untreated blockages causes extreme suffering and rapid death
Now dive deeper… Continue reading “Help! My Cat Keeps Trying To Pee”
Cystitis in cats is a fascinating disease. How many other illnesses are more common after rainy weather or moving house? Or how about the fact that it usually isn’t caused by infection? Continue reading “Help! My Cat Is Peeing Everywhere: Cystitis”
Sadly, the treatment of mental health problems in dogs is taken much more seriously than in cats. An anxious dog will often get help quickly due to destruction or noise issues. An anxious cat, by contrast, tends to suffer in silence. Even worse, when they do show signs they’re often blamed for it. Continue reading “Fear, Stress & Anxiety In Cats”
The biggest change to dog and cat ownership law ever will happen on July 1st. If you live in or have moved to SA, here’s how it will affect you and what you need to do. For everyone else, I think you’ll find this unique experiment very interesting. Continue reading “South Australia’s New Dog & Cat Laws”
‘At A Glance (Details Below)’
What Is Cat Flu?
- Cat flu isn’t influenza or a cold, it’s either a herpesvirus or calicivirus
- Symptoms include fever, not eating, and eye or respiratory infection
- Many infected cats become virus carriers or have lifelong problems
- Rarer conditions caused by cat flu include arthritis, gingivitis, eye damage, stillbirths & abortion
Now dive deeper. Continue reading “Help! My Kitten Has Cat Flu”
As a grumpy cat lover, I’m embarrassed to say what gets under my skin. It’s when a cat is so much fun to be around that someone says, “he’s like a dog.” Although it’s meant as high praise, to me it says a lot about how we risk seeing cats. Continue reading “The Top Ten Mistakes Cat Owners Make”
Blood testing in dogs and cats isn’t simply a case of ‘more is better’. It can be lifesaving but it can also occasionally bring harm. The decision to do it is by no means as black and white as it seems.
I’m going to use the evidence and my experience to help you decide if blood tests are a good idea for your pet. I’ll start by answering the question: when are blood tests useful? Then I’ll discuss the downsides. Continue reading “Should My Pet Have Blood Work?”
‘At A Glance’ (details below)
If A Pet Has A Heart Murmur
- Don’t panic! A heart murmur doesn’t mean much on its own.
- Learn the signs of heart failure so you know what to look for.
- Get your pet’s heart checked regularly
now dive deeper… Continue reading “Help! My Pet Has A Heart Murmur”
Update 1 year later: read to the end for the good news!
Out of the box came a beautiful and regal young male Ragdoll cat. He was quite a sight; in the prime of life and nearly perfect in health and temperament. But not to his owners, who said, “he’s a monster, we’re going to have to get rid of him.” Continue reading “How & Why To Feed Kittens In Meals”
Here is a short list of cat boarding facilities we are familiar with. Click here to read what’s wrong with many other catteries. If you know of another cattery that you recommend, please leave a comment below. Continue reading “Adelaide Cat Boarding Catteries”
Do you have to give your cat medicine? The good news is that there are a lot of other ways than tablets. Continue reading “Ways To Give Cats Medicine”
The advice you are getting is wrong. I’m to blame as much as anyone else. For years I’ve been blithely telling people how easy it will be. It was a friend of mine who first said, “Andrew, it was nothing like you showed me,” Then my own cat showed me, big time. Continue reading “Giving Cats Tablets (Or Ointment)”
Deafness in dogs and cats is important to understand. You need to know which puppies and kittens might be born deaf and recognise when it’s a sign of serious problems. You also need to know when it’s normal. Continue reading “Help! My Dog or Cat Is Going Deaf”
Are you worried your new puppy or kitten might be deaf? Read on to find out if your pet might be affected.
For more information please also read our guide to deafness & hearing tests in dogs and cats. Continue reading “Congenital Deafness In Puppies And Kittens”
Why did working with Red Panda change my views on flea control? The answer contains an even bigger message about product safety and feline health. Continue reading “Why Pandas Made Me Care About Flea Control”
Picture this: it’s 4 o’clock on a Saturday, we’re about to close for the weekend, and a caring local resident brings in a dog they’ve just found wandering the street. We get out the scanner, all set to read the microchip and reunite a dog with his family.
Aargh! We can’t find the owners. Continue reading “The Problem With Microchips”
The picture above shows Bingo, a cat from our clinic before and after treatment. I need all cat owners to know the warning signs of this insidious disease.
You are looking at one of the top three diseases of older cats. Without treatment, it causes significant health problems leading to early death. I would say that when you compare the pictures, it’s obvious. Yet it’s still missed all the time. Continue reading “The Look Of Thyroid Problems”
What if there’s a parallel universe where cats are our masters and keep us as pets. Wait, hang on… that’s our universe.
OK, let’s try that again. Imagine a universe where cats actually look after humans. I can just hear the sorts of things they would say: Continue reading “Is It Bad For Cats To Drink Milk?”
‘At A Glance (Details Below)’ What To Do
If A Cat Drinks More Than Usual
- It could be due to diabetes, kidney or thyroid disease
- These are all easily diagnosed on routine blood & urine testing
- The top three causes can all be managed or treated if detected in time
- If testing is normal, there’s usually nothing to worry about
Now dive deeper… Continue reading “Help! My Cat Is Drinking A Lot”
Many dogs do well on raw diets, but there are also several pitfalls to avoid. This article aims to guide dog owners into the safest choices within this sphere.
Vets have a tendency to be against raw diets, but I will do my best to be logical and unbiased. Therefore I’ll start with some benefits we see in these dogs. Continue reading “Are Raw Diets Good For Dogs & Cats?”
Imagine the outrage if a character called Fat Dog (or fat anything for that matter) was created today. Yet, there we were in Adelaide in the 1980s watching Fat Cat tell us to go to bed at 7:30 every night.
The fact is that an overweight cat is taken less seriously than an overweight dog. We see fat cats as fun and loveable, and somehow beyond our control. Like Garfield and his lasagne. Continue reading “How You CAN Get Overweight Cats To Lose Weight”
This isn’t just for dogs and cats in Adelaide. If you live near any city in the developed world these days, you need to know these people exist (click here for specialists in other states and countries). One day you may be very grateful. Continue reading “List of Adelaide Vet Specialists”
‘At A Glance (Details Below)’ What to do
When A Dog Or Cat Gets A Cut
- Don’t handle the wound if it looks clean, just keep your pet out of the dirt
- To remove dirt, rinse cuts in a solution of ½tsp salt to 1 cup water
- If there is serious bleeding, apply a tight bandage using clean cloth
- As long as you see a vet immediately, a tight dressing should do minimal harm and may be lifesaving
Now dive deeper… Continue reading “Help! Dogs With Cuts & Cats With Wounds”
‘At A Glance (Details Below)’ Emergency Care
When A Cat Has Fight Injuries
- Check your cat all over for painful areas, scabs or small wounds
- Nasty anaerobic infections often develop quickly in cat fight wounds
- See a vet for wounds, swellings, limping, not eating, quietness or lethargy
Now dive deeper… Continue reading “Help! My Cat Was In A Fight”
‘At A Glance (Details Below)’ Emergency Care
How To Get Rid Of Fleas
- Use modern flea killers recommended by vets and pet stores
- Remove fleas from the house and especially pet sleeping areas
- Keep dogs and cats on good flea control to prevent new infestations
Now dive deeper… Continue reading “Help! My Pet Has Fleas”
Before you have an emergency, it’s good to know which after hours vet is closest and how you will get there in a hurry. There are four veterinary hospitals open 24 hours a day, seven days a week in Adelaide*. We created this clickable map by comparing travel times to each one from various locations. Please use it to get directions to your nearest vet when your regular vet is closed.
Walkerville Vet is open 8am to 6:30pm weekdays and 9am to 1pm Saturdays. Vets start consulting at 9am. Continue reading “Find An Adelaide Emergency Vet Open Late”