International Black Cat Appreciation Day

17 August, 2016 – Today is International Black Cat Appreciation Day – not to be confused with the UK’s National Black Cat Day which is 27 October. Both days aim to dispel the negative superstitions that still surround the enigmatic black cat. While black cats have throughout the ages been attributed with many powers and...
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NZ government opens two week public consultation on dog control rules

August 3, 2016 -New Zealand’s government has opened a short public consultation aimed at enhancing and updating the country’s dog control laws and regulations. It opened for submissions and feedback on 1 August and will close on 14 August. “Our dog control laws value the role of dogs as pets, companions, and valued contributors to...
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Cuteness alert: Tasmania’s Chief Wombat Cuddler Competition winner crowned!

July 18, 2016 – Since Derek the wombat hit international stardom, he’s been frantically busy. He’s an adolescent now and being a savvy business-wombat he has a new line of tea towels and t-shirts out. If that’s not enough to keep this Flinders Island, Tasmania, Australia local run off his paws; he’s the proud big...
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New Zealand’s SPCA launches national animal welfare programme in schools

July 13, 2016 – New Zealand’s Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) has launched a national programme in primary and intermediate schools, aiming to teach children how to treat animals. SPCA Chief Scientific Officer Dr Arnja Dale, who oversaw the strategy of the programme, said it is one of the most important...
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Neutering pets: Australian Veterinary Association believes traditional treatment detrimental

June 22, 2016 – The Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) is in the process of updating its policy on de-sexing (neutering) companion animals, because new research indicates that de-sexing too early, and in the traditional way, may be detrimental to some animals. President of the South Australian Division of the AVA, Anne Fowler said that with compulsory de-sexing of animals being introduced in South Australia, a broader set of options should...
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Domestic cat risk to wildlife studied across six countries; Australian owners most concerned

June 29, 2016 – An international study involving six countries has revealed that Australians are most likely to accept restrictions on cat ownership and have their feline friends neutered (de-sexed), wormed, vaccinated and micro-chipped because of the potential risk their pets pose to native wildlife. Murdoch University PhD researcher Catherine Hall and collaborators surveyed 1720...
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Profile: Simone Armstrong giving back to Australia’s indigenous people and pets

June 16, 2016 – A young second-year University of Sydney veterinary student, Simone Armstrong, 21, is giving back to the indigenous people of Australia as a volunteer for the Animal Management in Rural and Remote Indigenous Communities programme (AMRRIC), utilising her future profession in veterinary science. With the support of her academic adviser and mentor, associate professor and sub-dean of indigenous...
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University of Sydney research aims to identify genetic causes of deafness in Dalmatians

June 8, 2016 – Researchers at the University of Sydney are working with Dalmatian breeders to try and establish the genetic basis for hearing loss in the dog breed. Brainstem Auditory Evoked Response (BAER) testing can be used to evaluate the hearing of any dog (or cat), young or old, suspected of being deaf in one...
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Finding Dory release set to see thousands of pet fish dumped

19 May, 2016 – The UK’s Royal Society for the Protection of Animals (RSPCA) has warned that the release of Finding Dory, the follow-up to the hit film Finding Nemo, is likely to lead to thousands of pet fish being bought as pets for children dumped at rescue centres or cruelly flushed down the toilet....
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Australia and New Zealand vets start reducing use of antibiotics on animals

May 14, 2016 – The Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) has launched a world-first trial to help to protect life-saving antibiotics for the future while, to find ways to protect life-saving antibiotics for animals for the future. The pilot programme is the brainchild of Canberra vets Alison Taylor and Michael Archinal. Several veterinary practices in Australia’s capital...
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