Behaviour Related


Having lived with six cats at one (wonderful) point in my life, we had to deal with spraying (one of the females did it too). They were all neutered and sterilised. Is this a common problem? ...read more
 

Our understanding of dog behaviour has advanced tremendously in recent years, mostly for good. There are, however, still some trainers out there who insist on “alpha owners”, electric collars and other aversives to teach a dog. Founded on unscientific precepts of wolf behaviour, long since discredited, it’s heavily biased on “being the boss” and punishing the dog that doesn’t respond. ...read more
 

Twice as nice or double trouble? Before we add a second dog to our family, it’s a good idea to give the matter plenty of thought. Good intentions don’t always guarantee great results. While there are plenty of stories that have happy endings, there are some pitfalls that can easily be avoided if the misconceptions surrounding this topic are addressed. ...read more
 

A fearful dog is one that has difficulty adapting to its environment. All dogs have a threshold of fear that is reached when the dog no longer feels safe, for whatever reason. At this point, the sympathetic nervous system kicks in, causing various physical and emotional changes in the dog. ...read more
 

“No! No… no Fido!” I see the frustrated owner at the end of her leash (pun intended). And Fido is, well, not at the end of the leash; but why is the owner upset? I don’t know exactly what Fido is doing to upset his owner. And neither does Fido. ...read more
 

Asking yourself and your family some basic questions about what kind of dog or puppy would best suit you will make the whole choosing, adoption and family integration much easier. There are so many types of dogs in shelters that most of the time it’s almost impossible to know what you’re looking at. While it’s never a guarantee, as there are always exceptions to the rules, it will help you to know what to look for in a new puppy or dog at the shelter. ...read more
 

Let’s get over the idea that older dogs can’t learn new tricks. They can. We’re not talking about balancing a ball on the end of his nose (although that can be done) but about enriching both your lives through activities you enjoy together. ...read more
 

This everyday phrase takes on a new meaning for pet lovers. Welcome to the world of Tellington TTouch® What is Tellington TTouch®? This is a gentle and positive way to help animals and humans to relax, to manage environmental stress, increase body awareness and promote healing. ...read more
 

Dogs became domesticated thousands of years ago, creating a mutually beneficial relationship, but we need to remember that they are a different species, have different needs, ‘speak’ a different language, and behave in a different way to us. We need to respect that in order to keep our families – and our pets – safe. ...read more
 

Adopting an adult cat is like inviting a friend to move in with you. The relationship is an equal partnership based on trust, co-operation and understanding, and compensating for each other’s differences, strengths and weaknesses. ...read more
 

Cat lovers know that there’s nothing as relaxing as having a feline friend by your side, softly purring away. But did you know that it’s actually good for your health too? ...read more
 

Dogs need their nails trimmed on a regular basis. As with our own nails, left too long, they can break or even curl into the dog’s pads (or with dew claws, into the leg.) Over-long nails can also affect the gait, causing an imbalance that can affect the skeletal structure and cause health problems. ...read more
 

Submissive and excited urination are an involuntary loss of bladder control caused by various environmental triggers. While puppies under the age of 12 weeks have limited bladder muscle development and may lose control, this usually stops as the puppy develops. If it doesn’t, there could be more to the situation… ...read more
 

Every pet lover knows that at some stage it is likely that this deep and wonderful bond will be challenged by the unimaginable sense of loss. We express our love by doing the very best we can for our pets. Letting go, for whatever reason, is a part of that love. ...read more
 

As humans, we are familiar with the concepts of anxiety and stress. They are related, but somewhat different in their origins and treatment. Anxiety is generally seen as an unpleasant emotional state, including feelings of uneasiness, apprehension, and distress. Stress, on the other hand, is caused by specific external circumstances such as problems at work, family and financial conditions. How we deal with stress varies with the intensity of our reaction to stressful incidents and our innate or learned coping skills. ...read more
 

Dogs and cats use marking as a way of communicating with other animals – when they pee or defecate, pheromones are released that are their ‘profile’ in animal terms. It’s natural, but of course when it happens in the house, it is a behaviour we want to change! ...read more
 

Puppies are adorable. Puppies are bouncy. Puppies are love and joy personified. Indeed, puppies are many wonderful things – but one thing they usually are not is predictable, especially in what size they’ll be when they’re grown up, particularly if they’re mixed breeds. ...read more
 

The myth that deaf dogs can’t learn, or are more aggressive than other dogs is simply not true. While they may require more patience with training, and have a few limitations that require management, the bond they form with their owner is often strongly developed and they can lead happy and fulfilled lives. Some dogs are born deaf, others may have compromised hearing and some lose their hearing with ...read more
 

“We recently adopted a lovely dog of about two years old. When we brought Trixie back from the kennels, she was terrified... ...read more
 

Please could you help me? My rescue Staffordshire Terrier-mix dog, Sandy, is a year old. He is warm and loving around the home (except for the vacuum cleaner, which he attacks). ...read more
 

We recently acquired a cross-breed dog, Sally, from a shelter. She’s about four years old. We have another rescue, Andy, who is a Staffie cross, about six years old. Andy likes lots of human attention, while Sally tends to be less social with the family... ...read more
 

Our new Labrador puppy, Aslan, chews stones almost continuously – actually, he chews just about everything his mouth touches, but mostly stones. Is this because he’s lacking something in his diet? ...read more
 

Please help! I really love my rescue dog, Roger, an Africanis-mix. As an adopted adult dog, he has settled down wonderfully and I can’t fault him on anything. Our challenge, however, is that when I come home from work, he is so excited that he jumps up – and doesn’t stop. ...read more
 

My 6-month-old Beagle puppy, Boots, eats his own poop – and any other that he finds on walks. It’s really unpleasant as his breath stinks, and I’d love to have cuddle kisses with him but that’s obviously a no-no. What can I do to help him? ...read more
 

We recently adopted a young adult Yorkie; she has settled in well and we love her dearly. However, the problem with her is that she fiercely guards her food and becomes quite aggressive if any of our other animals or my husband and I go anywhere near while she’s eating. We’re not sure what the best way is to handle this behaviour and really need your advice. Please help. ...read more
 

I’m afraid of dogs but would like to get one for my kids, who adore animals – how do I get over this? ...read more
 

I recently adopted a Terrier-cross from our local animal shelter. She promptly stole my heart and settled in wonderfully. She’s an independent little dog with lots of confidence. Although she was a little dominant in her previous home, which I was worried about, she quickly found a balance with my two other rescues with whom she now shares her life with. The only problem is that she cries terribly every morning when I leave for work ...read more