Monday, 2 April 2012

How to get your cat to chill out...

Does your cat...

     Urinate in inappropriate places?
     Scratch at the furniture?
     Run and hide whenever people visit your house?
     Run away when you get out the cat carrier?

If any or all of these things happen in your household then it's a sign that your cat is stressed or anxious.

What about? Well it could be many things but given Puss doesn't have the ability to talk to you to tell you the cause of his or her stress then it's far easier to treat the symptoms.

If this video looks like your cat or a cat you know then there is help at hand!

Treating the symptoms can be as easy as plugging the Feliway diffuser into the wall or spraying the areas that your cat is targeting.

Feliway is a synthetic copy of the facial pheremone that cats use to mark people and objects that they like.

If your cat loves to rub her face on your leg or he has an obsession with loving head-butts then they are telling you that they love you!

Therefore by plugging a Feliway diffuser into the wall in your house the area can be infused with happy and calming pheremones for your cat.

It can go a long way to improving many cat's quality of life and who doesn't love a happy cat!!!

Remember that we have specials on Feliway for Polite Pets Month - even more reason to give it a go!

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

It's Polite Pets Month!

This March the Australian Veterinary Association ( has launched the initiative of Polite Pets Month and we think its such a good idea we are going to run it through until the end of April!

Having awareness months are a great idea but those of you who have ever had an anxious dog or a pussy cat who urinates in the wrong place know that these behaviours need constant attention and don't go away at the end of the month!

Most behavioural problems in dogs and cats arise from fear and anxiety rather than deliberate naughty behaviour.
Yes some dogs bite because they are aggressive but the overwhelming majority of dogs bite because they are scared or feel threatened.
And cats don't pee throughout the house because they are disobedient teenagers, they do it because they are trying to tell you that they are anxious about something in their environment. Cats can even develop serious medical conditions such as urinary tract problems from anxiety and stress!

The aim of Polite Pets Month 2012 is to raise awareness about the importance of dog training, puppy socialisation and dog bite prevention.
Dog training and socialisation themselves lead to well adjusted dogs that are better at adapting to stressful situations and consequently tend to bite far less often.

Polite Pets Month is sponsored by Ceva Animal Health who make 2 excellent products to help both dogs and cats deal with stressful situations and therefore be better behaved.

Adaptil is a product that contains D.A.P. (Dog Appeasing Pheremone). D.A.P. is the synthetic equivalent of the pheromone secreted by bitches to reassure their pups on contact. D.A.P. helps dogs handle stressful situations better (separation, weaning, transport, fear of noise, firework displays, etc.) and enables them to adapt to new situations. It is therefore indispensable during the socialisation period of puppies. Adaptil is available as a spray, a diffuser or a collar.

Feliway® is a similar product for cats that is a synthetic copy of the feline facial pheromone, used by cats to mark their territory as safe and secure.

By mimicking the cat’s natural facial pheromones, Feliway® creates a state of familiarity and security in the cat's local environment.
As a result, Feliway® can be used to help comfort and reassure cats, while they cope with a challenging situation and/or help prevent or reduce the stress caused to a cat during a change in their environment.

So for March and April we will be supplying you with information on dog and cat behaviour as well as giving discounts on both Adaptil and Feliway.

The promotions are as follows: -

  • Buy 2 Adaptil collars and receive 15% off (that's $20 off!)
  • Buy an Adaptil diffuser and a second refill and receive 15% off (that's $20 off!)
  • Buy an Adaptil diffuser and an Adaptil collar and receive 15% off (that's $25 off!)

  • Buy a Feliway diffuser and a second refill and receive 15% off (that's more than $20 off!)
  • Buy a Feliway diffuser and a Feliway spray and receive 15% off (that's more than $20 off!)

Stay tuned for more updates from Polite Pets month!

Monday, 5 March 2012

Overweight dogs & 5 steps to a healthier dog.

This weeks alarming fact is about dogs...

 In Australia,  41.5 % of dogs are overweight or obese1.

 The causes of obesity are varied:

·          Overfeeding may result from unlimited access to food

·          Dogs spend 60-70% of their day lying down with no physical activity2

·          Neutering a pet tends to reduce its energy needs by about 25%2

Weight gain is the result of an increase in body fat. This is usually caused by eating too much, especially when combined with lack of exercise. But there can be other contributing factors too...

1. Age
             - Older pets are less active, have less energy, and require fewer calories.
             - Your dogs metabolism starts to slow down at around 5 years of age
 2. Breed
             - Some breeds are more likely to gain weight.
             - These include Labrador Retrievers, Cocker and King Charles Cavalier Spaniels and Golden Retrievers.

3. Neutering / desexing
             - Clinical studies have shown that the basic metabolism of neutered pets is lower.
             - Neutered pets actually require fewer calories.

4. Medical Problems
             - Very occasionally weight gain is associated with a medical disorder that may require specific treatment.

So what do you do if your dog IS overweight?

Firstly, you need to assess the energy requirements of your dog in order to get to his ideal weight.

How do you do that?!

The best thing to do is to bring him in for a FREE weight assessment at Bondi Vets. We can get him onto an appropriate calorie controlled diet that has significant bulk to ensure he still feels satisfied while losing body fat and maintaining lean muscle mass.

We can also advise on the appropriate amount of exercise for your dog and set up a timeline for his weight loss goals.

Secondly, exercise your dog’s playfulness!

If you’re trying to reduce your dog’s weight or help your dog maintain a healthy weight, you can complement food with simple and fun exercises.

·    Create a natural obstacle course with benches, trees, ditches or anything you encounter along the way that your dog can jump over, crawl under or balance on.

·    Take a 30-minute walk around your neighborhood. This is a great way to exercise and bond with your dog.

·    Play fetch with a ball or toy (never use a stick, as these can splinter and cause injury to your dog).

·    Hide a toy or some kibble and let your dog find it.


1. Buying the food from the supermarket or pet store and just feeding him less of it.
- This just leads to him feeling hungry and encourages him to scavenge for food elsewhere.

2. Getting advice from people that are unqualified to give advice
- Pet store employees are excellent at pointing you in the right direction for collars, leads and toys but are they really qualified to be advising you on your dog's health and well being? That would be like asking a retail assistant to help you with your own health problem.

3. Feeding a supermarket diet that claims to be for weight loss
- In general dog foods that are sold at supermarkets have lower quality ingredients and most tinned foods contain a lot of fat (as it is very palatable) and water. Not good for weight loss!
- Just because a "celebrity vet" is recommending a dog food doesn't mean that they are giving you specific advice for the well being of your dog!

So here are your "Five steps to a Healthier Dog": -

1. Watch what your dog eats

Different dogs have different needs when it comes to nutrition. That’s why you should work with your vet to make the right food choices for your dog. Together we can the right type and amount of food for your dog’s life-stage and health condition.

2. Track your Dog’s weight

Losing weight can help your dog achieve better health, but only if the weight is lost in a healthy, controlled manner. To make sure your dog is losing weight at a healthy pace, make sure to weigh your dog regularly and use a weight tracking chart to track your dog’s progress which you can get from your vet clinic.

3. Maintain a healthy activity level

Your dog’s weight management program isn’t complete without a healthy amount of physical activity. Whether it’s a game of fetch or a walk in the park, make sure your dog is getting the physical activity needed to get and stay healthy.

4. Visit your vet often

Regular trips to the vet ensure that your dog’s weight management program is going smoothly. Your vet knows your dog’s ideal weight, how fast he should be losing weight and which foods are best for each stage of the weight loss plan. All weight checks are FREE at Bondi Vets!

5. Maintain an ideal weight for life

Your dog’s weight management plan should be life-long. Once your dog has attained an ideal weight, switch to a simple weight maintenance plan that consists of regular exercise and proper nutrition.

1.     McGreevy PD, Thomson PC, Pride C, Fawcett A, Grassi T, Jones B. Prevalence of obesity in dogs examined by Australian veterinary practices and the risk factors involved. Vet Rec. 2005;156:695–707.
2.     Rosenthal, M. Obesity in America: Why Bruno and Bessy are so heavy and what you can do about it. Vet Forum 2007;24:26-34

Monday, 13 February 2012

Overweight pussy cats - some alarming stats...

Stat 1 - In Australia 32% of cats are overweight or obese.

Stat 2 - In cats over 7 years of age, the risk of dying is almost 3 times higher in overweight cats compared to cats of a normal weight.

So, one third of middle aged to older cats have 3 times the chance of dying from what is a preventable problem.

We have all heard that obesity can be the precursor to many problems in humans such as diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure and heart problems; well in cats you can add in urinary tract, kidney and skin problems as well.

Correct body shape for a cat
So how do I know if my cat is overweight?

Examine your cat in the following areas:

Underneath the belly and between the hind legs – is there an ‘apron’ or roll of fat there?

Along her ribs – can you feel the ribs if you gently press down as you stroke her? If not – there is probably too much fat. 
So if she doesnt look like the cat in the right here then she is probably overweight.

Why is she overweight?
Most cats are overweight because of over-feeding and it’s all too easy to understand why. We quickly learn just how happy some special treats or new food makes them feel.

However, if your cat is going to stay in shape she is going to have to learn to live with less food. You will just have to compensate by giving her lots of extra attention!

Some tips on how to get the excess weight off...

1. Come in to Bondi Vets for a FREE weight consultation to help you set a healthy eating programme for a cat that needs to lose some excess weight. 

2. Just saying my cat needs to lose weight is great but we need to know the target weight and set a goal. Once we know the target weight then one of our vets or nurses can set up an eating plan and get you underway.

3. Cats should have multiple small meals every day. If you are away from home a lot, try a food ball or a mechanical food dispenser

4. If she begs for food give her extra cuddles and attention instead!

5. Make sure you set time aside every day to play with your cat – treat her to some new toys or just use scrunched up paper

6. Buy a tall scratching post to encourage your cat to climb

7. Consider getting a kitten to keep your cat company. More playing and activity is a great way to burn calories and keep any older cat young!

8. Watch out for cat treats – they contain lots of calories

9. Ask us to recommend a weight management food

Now for the don'ts...

1. Don't expect to buy a "light diet" from the supermarket or pet store and have success

2. Don't get weight loss advice from people who aren't qualified to give the advice.

3. Dont forget that the best place to start is with a FREE WEIGHT CONSULTATION at Bondi Vets

Remember that enabling your cat to lose weight could lead to more years of purring and cuddles!!

Monday, 6 February 2012

FREE pet insurance!!!

In a world where we are all (us included!) treating our pets like members of the family we need to make sure they can get the best medical attention possible.

Sometimes the best medical attention possible is expensive and occasionally your pet may need to be referred to a specialist for certain tests or procedures.

So in order to prevent awkward conversations or a second mortgage on your house a simple solution is pet insurance.

Thankfully Petplan are now offering free pet insurance to puppies and kittens under a year of age!

All you need is a vet check for your pet (for example when they have their vaccinations) and the vet or nurse can sign them up for a free one month trial.

The trial is
obligation free and you walk out of the hospital safe in the knowledge that your pet is covered for the next month should anything untoward happen.

Petplan will then contact you regarding continuing with the policy which we recommend as we believe that Petplan is the best pet insurance company in the market.

Petplan have won the award for Pet Insurance Company of the Year for the past 4 years.

So bring your puppy, kitten or pet under a year of age in for a health check and we can sign them up for your peace of mind.

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Excess Baggage?

Hi everyone and here's to a happy and healthy 2012!!

Now if your pets are like the majority of us humans then they may have slightly over-indulged during the festive season and put on a few unwanted kilos.

We all know that being overweight can make us humans more likely to develop diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, kidney problems and arthritis. Unfortunately it is the same for our pets! 

I can hear you saying but its only one kilo so what does it matter?! Well if your 10kg dog has put on 1kg of fat or your 5kg puss has added half a kilo thats the equivalent to a 70kg person putting on 7kg!! That should make us all sit up and notice.

If you now look at your pet and think she might be in that situation then we are here to help!

= too many festive season treats!! 

Starting on Tuesday February 7th we are starting our Pet Slimmer appointments with our new vet nurse Rachel. Rachel is a very experienced nurse who loves helping pets lose weight to improve their quality of life and educate you at the same time.

The Pet Slimmer appointments are FREE and are run on Tuesdays between 2pm and 3.30pm by appointment.

As an added incentive Hills have a Pet Slimmer of the Year competition with the winner receiving a year's worth of pet food for your furry friend and travel vouchers for you!

So you could celebrate your pets new found health and happiness while sipping on a cocktail on holidays! Or take them with you.


"Barney loves lounging by the pool and flaunting his beach body now that he has lost those few extra kilos..."

So just call us at the hospital on 9130 2001 to book your free appointment to give your pet the health he or she deserves in 2012!

Monday, 22 August 2011

Preventative dentistry!

I am sure you have all heard the vet say "your pet needs her teeth cleaned" or had the experience of bad breath when you get close to your pet's mouth.

The reason for both of these begins with plaque! Your pets don't brush their teeth on a daily basis like we do so they are not mechanically removing the plaque from their teeth like we do.

Sure many dogs and cats eat dry food but most dry foods crumble when chewed, cleaning the tips of the teeth but leaving the rest of the tooth covered in plaque.

Plaque accumulation then leads to tartar which is hard, full of bacteria and dangerous to teeth. The reason most people don't believe tartar is a problem is that;  1) we rarely get tartar accumulation because we brush our teeth twice a day and 2) tartar is unlikely to stop your pet from eating.

So if we brush our teeth twice a day and go to the dentist for a teeth scale and polish every 6 to 12 months then why should our pets be any different?

I can hear you screaming from here - "He's kidding if he thinks I am going to brush my cat's teeth!" Well I can't blame you! Not many people do and not many pets will let you do it if you haven't been brushing their teeth from a young age.

So then the answer must be to get your pooches teeth cleaned with a scale and polish every 6 to 12 months!

Now I can hear you groan - "That's going to cost a fortune!"

My answer is NOT ANY MORE!!!

Here is the kicker. We have decided to be proactive and offer preventative dentistry for pets rather than waiting for the teeth to be bad enough to warrant an expensive dental.

Why preventative? And when?

Firstly your pet's teeth need to be graded in order to determine the extent of the problem.

Grade 0 means perfect teeth! Unfortunately there aren't many pets out there with Grade 0 teeth.

Grade 1 means mild plaque & tartar with mild gingivitis (gum reddening) like these teeth...

Grade 2 means moderate plaque & tartar with moderate gingivitis like this dog's teeth...

Now luckily for everyone involved Grades 1 & 2 are both reversible! There is no permanent damage if the pet's teeth are cleaned at these stages but as soon as we progress to Grade 3 there is permanent irreversible damage to the teeth and the tooth (or teeth) may need to be extracted.

Here is an image of what happens in a Grade 3 tooth...


As you can imagine Grade 4 is worse still!!! Grade 4 mouths will require multiple teeth to be extracted to relieve the dog or cat of chronic tooth pain.

So, from today we are offering significant cost reductions on Grade 1 and Grade 2 dentals - around 50% off!!

Why you ask? Preventative dentistry is good for your pets!

Here is a table of the relative costs of preventative dentistry (Grades 1 & 2) versus reactive dentistry (Grades 3 & 4) which often requires tooth extractions and oral surgery.

Grade 1
Grade 2
Grade 3
Grade 4

Now if that isn't an incentive to get your pooch or kitty's teeth cleaned on a regular basis I don't know what is!!!