Potts Point Vet Hospital Blog

Common Household Poisons

Posted by Dr. Miriam Meek on 29-Mar-2018 15:10:46

The common poisons (or “toxins”) which pets encounter at home can be divided into food, medications, insecticides, chemicals, and other. The list below is just a few of the more commonly encountered poisons.

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Topics: prevention, safety, pets, dogs, cat, poison, toxin

10 Pet Travel Essentials

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 18-Sep-2017 17:01:52

Hitting the road with your pet this summer? Here are our picks for the 10 essentials to consider when traveling with your pet!

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New Strain of Contagious Canine Parvovirus Discovered in Australia

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 15-May-2017 16:24:10

You may have read a few recent news articles describing a new strain of highly contagious canine parvovirus that has been recently discovered in Australia. 

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Topics: prevention, safety

Cat Adoption in Sydney

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 29-Mar-2017 15:28:53

A recent study estimates there to be somewhere between 2.1 and 6.3 million feral animals in Australia. PPVH is committed to helping decrease this number by working closely with organizations such as the Community Cat Carers and Cat Rescue 901. We vet check, desex, vaccinate and deworm the animals, with the intent of finding them all homes. 

Having never interacted with humans, the cats often come in to the clinic scared and shy, but we work diligently to get them used to the human touch. Sometimes you'll even see us carrying around small kittens in our scrub tops! This gets them used to the sound of human voices and our scent. 

Currently, we have a litter of three (previously four - one just got adopted!) very sweet, 4 month old kittens. They have turned into very well socialized and affectionate cats. 

Check Me-owt! I'm up for adoption (along with two siblings- see below!) at Potts Point Vet. Come and meet me today! 

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Topics: Shelter pets

Important Information For All Cat Owners: Fatal Virus Outbreak in NSW

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 05-Feb-2017 09:00:00

Feline panleukopenia virus (also known as feline infectious enteritis, feline distemper or feline parvovirus) is a fatal disease that is currently affecting cats in NSW. 

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Topics: safety

Dogs and Fireworks: How to Keep Your Pet Content

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 29-Dec-2016 08:51:49

The fireworks in Sydney are of epic proportions - don't let your pet's anxiety be!

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Topics: safety

Holiday Hazards for your Pet

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 10-Dec-2016 11:30:28

While the holiday season is a generally enjoyable time, it can pose some specific risks for your pet. Read on to keep your pet safe and to avoid hefty vet bills (which you probably can't afford after buying all those pressies!)

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Topics: safety

Anal Sacs: Answers to the Questions you may be too EmbarrASSed to Ask

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 22-Nov-2016 08:24:00

Last week, I had a conversation with the owners of a poodle we look after. Based on my observations, I suspected their dog was suffering from an anal sac problem. When I asked the worried dog parents if they were familiar with anal sacs the female owner sheepishly replied "Only from what I saw on The Bachelor..." 

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Cat Behaviors Explained (Part I)

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 19-Oct-2016 08:12:00

Do you often look at your cat and ask yourself: "Why do you do these strange things, my feline friend?" Cats are (understandably) often regarded as mysterious creatures with seemingly bizarre - and sometimes frustrating - behaviours.  

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Kennel Cough: Busting Three Myths about this Common Disease

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 23-Sep-2016 07:00:00

As vets, we struggle to find a disease that has more misconceptions and misunderstandings than canine kennel cough. Let's clear some of those up, shall we?

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Topics: safety

Problematic Puppies: 5 Essential Dog Training Tips

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 24-Aug-2016 06:48:05

On a recent trip home to Boston, I was welcomed with a big surprise: My future sister-in-law and her husband (whom I was staying with) had just adopted a new puppy from Buddy Dog Adoption Center. It goes without saying that I was nothing but ecstatic. 

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Topics: Shelter pets

Yes, your pet is probably fat: Dog diets & cat diets 101

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 17-Aug-2016 07:30:00

Believe it or not, obesity is the #1 nutritional disorder seen in dogs and cats.

Obesity is defined as an excess body weight of greater than 15%, and it can look something like this:

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Topics: safety, diet, weight loss, obesity

Cat Acne. Yes, Cats get Acne.

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 18-Jul-2016 14:47:32

When you think of acne, you might only think of angsty pimple-faced teenagers, but in fact, cats suffer from acne too. 

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Topics: prevention

Seven Ways to Help Treat Arthritis in Pets in the Winter

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 29-Jun-2016 09:33:33

Have you noticed your aging pup or kitty slowing down? Is he slower to rise in the morning or after a nap? 

Maybe your elderly cat can't quite jump up on the window sill like she used to? 

These are signs your pet may be suffering from arthritis. Also known as degenerative joint disease or osteoarthritis, this common disease is caused by simple wear and tear of the joints over time.

The signs of arthritis can range from mild discomfort (this might not be obvious to an owner or vet) to debilitating joint pain that severely limits the animal's mobility. Cold and damp winter days can make arthritis worse.

If you are not sure if your pet is  pain, the veterinarian can examine its limb joints and spine to detect pain.

There are many things that can be done to help slow the progression of arthritis in pets. These include:

1. Special prescription diets: Hill's JD and Royal Canin Mobility are just two examples: they include supplements and nutrients proven to improve and support joint health.

2. Good nail and foot care: keeping the toe nails clipped properly  and the hair trimmed so the pads dont slip,  to  help ensure a normal gait and remove stress on the joints.

3 Soft bedding and carpeting over slippery floors: added traction can also prevent paws form slipping and legs from splaying out and stressing sore joints. 

4. Pentosan injections: The veterinarian can  administer a once-weekly injection over three weeks which has meany beneficial actions. Just a few actions are that pentosan acts to thicken joint fluid, increases activity of young joint cartilage cells and helps improve mobility of all joints.  

5. Oral supplements such as 4cyte may reverse cartilage damage and decrease pain in the joint. There are many brands and types of supplements to suit even the fussiest  sore pet.

 6. Heating: keeping pets warm with heated beds and blankets can definitely improve mobility.

7. Drugs:  Just like you and me, sometimes our pets need some anti-inflammatories and pain-relief medicines, to get them through their bad days. The veterinarian will help you choose the right drug for your pets requirements

This list is just a start; there are many things that can be done to help an aging pet who may be suffering from arthritis. If you think your pet may be showing signs of arthritis, please contact us to schedule an appointment with one of our vets to discuss all the treatment options. 
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Topics: prevention

5 Easy Ways to Help Native Wildlife in the City

Posted by Georgina Pritchard on 27-May-2016 07:30:00

Life in the city is busy, and it can be easy to forget about the native creatures we share the space with. Some species, such as the Australian White Ibis, have adapted to city life extremely well (whilst developing an unfavourable reputation as scavengers).

However, most species have just kept on keeping on, and it is perhaps hard to see the impact of urban development on their lives. Nevertheless, there are several simple steps we can all take to give our local native species a leg up here in the Big Smoke.

1. Leave bowls or buckets of fresh water in your garden or balcony

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Topics: Exotics

Your dog ate WHAT? Common Toxins to Dogs

Posted by Ashley McCarthy, RVN Cert C&G VNES on 29-Apr-2016 11:41:51

We all love sharing our food with dogs but which foods should they not eat? We love watching them run around the park but which plants will make them sick? Dogs are very different to us and many things that ok for humans are not ok for them. Read on to learn about some common toxins to dogs that may be around your house that can make your dog sick!


Ibuprofen or Nurofen

When ingested these drugs (although alleviate our headaches) are detrimental to your dog. In high doses it can cause kidney and liver failure and neurological changes such as seizures. Even in small doses it can cause stomach ulcers, vomiting and diarrhoea. Any ingested of ibuprofen warrants vet attention.


This contains ethylene glycol which when ingested is converted in the liver into metabolites that cause acute kidney failure. Prompt veterinary treatment is required for a good prognosis. Left untreated it is fatal. Initial signs of ingestion include vomiting, excessive drinking and urination and ataxia.

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Topics: safety

Get to the Vet! How to Know It's An Emergency

Posted by Ashley McCarthy, RVN Cert C&G VNES on 13-Apr-2016 11:59:10

Our pets rely on us for everything  - food, exercise, a caring loving home and vet care. Sometimes we leave vet care for one or two days due to a busy lifestyle or maybe because your little one ‘just isn’t that sick.’ When should vet care not be delayed? There are many conditions and injuries that should be seen immediately, read on to find out what they are.

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Topics: safety

Potts Point Dog Eats Carrots, Turns Orange

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 01-Apr-2016 07:00:00

It was a rainy July day when dog owner Hope walked into Potts Point Vet Hospital with her labradoodle, Polly Ester. Polly wasn't there for a vaccine, she hadn't even been sick. She was there because she had turned orange.

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Topics: safety

Chocolate Toxicity: Keep Your Dog Safe This Easter

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 22-Mar-2016 17:35:14

You might not think of Easter as a dangerous time of year, but every Easter we see many sick dogs related to one very common Easter treat: chocolate. 

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Topics: safety

Animals Asia Foundation: PPVH Connection

Posted by Claire Jenkins RVN, MBVNA on 11-Mar-2016 18:03:12

From an early age I always wanted to be a veterinary nurse. I can honestly say I have never been disappointed with my choice of profession.  Each day is different but always involves the rewarding task of nursing animals back to health and making them feel better. 

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5 Common Misconceptions About Ferrets

Posted by Jimena Puente on 11-Feb-2016 13:20:30

1. Misconception: Ferrets are rodents

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Topics: Exotics

Fast Facts About Heat Stroke (and Other Summer Health Hazards) in Pets

Posted by Ashley McCarthy, RVN Cert C&G VNES on 29-Jan-2016 16:05:31

Image source: http://carrington.edu/blog

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Topics: safety

7 Reasons to Adopt Shelter Pets

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 13-Jan-2016 14:39:29
To give a pet a second chance: Rescue animals make great pets. They often end up in shelters for reasons they can't even control: family's moving house, have a new baby, etc. By adopting your pet, you're giving that animal a second chance at a loving home! 
To save more than just one life: By adopting an animal you are saving more than just that animal -- you're supporting the shelter which is often home to hundreds of other animals looking for homes. 
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Paralysis Ticks: Three Things You Need to Know to Save Your Pet's Life

Posted by Dr. Miriam Meek on 09-Dec-2015 14:43:29

There are a number of ticks in Australia, but the life of your pets (and rarely, babies and small children) is threatened every summer by the paralysis tick.

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Topics: prevention, safety, ticks

The Results are In! Oliver's DNA test

Posted by Oliver on 27-Nov-2015 15:46:55

In case you missed it, check out last week's post on DNA Testing in Dogs.

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What's Your Mutt's Makeup? DNA Testing in Dogs

Posted by Oliver on 09-Nov-2015 12:29:16

Hi, I'm Oliver. For the last year, everyone at PPVH has wondered what breeds I'm made up of. Well, due to the new Advance DNA test, we have a complete break down of all the awesome dog breeds that make up my DNA! How cool is that? I was a bit nervous I wouldn't pass the "test" but everyone assured me this wasn't that kind of test.... 

Keep reading to find out how the test is performed and why it might be important to DNA test your dog.

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Food Allergies in Pets

Posted by Dr. Miriam Meek on 28-Oct-2015 14:24:45

In last week's post, we covered Five Signs Your Pet is Allergic. Today, we'll focus specifically on  food allergies in your pet. 

Sometimes the veterinarian can be suspicious that the reason for your pet’s illness is due to a component of the food. This may be when your pet is itchy, has skin problems, has recurrent ear infections or has a sensitive tummy. At Potts Point Veterinary Hospital we have three steps to our elimination diet routine.

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Ditch the Itch: Five Signs Your Pet Is Allergic

Posted by Dr. Miriam Meek on 14-Oct-2015 10:59:16

Unlike humans, dogs and cats don't get yeast infections without a good reason. Yeast, called Malassezia, normally lives on the skin of our pets in very low numbers. If this microscopic organism multiplies on your pet's skin (any skin, even between the toes or down the ears), that is a pretty sure sign your little friend has an underlying problem.

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High Rise Syndrome in Cats – Five Facts About this Urban Condition

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 02-Oct-2015 10:12:00

As the warmer months come around, everyone is opening their windows and enjoying time on their balconies.  This puts pets (cats in particular) at a risk; cats love high places. In the wild, they can stalk prey or take a nap high up in a tree.  If they fall, they can easily grab on to a branch and save themselves. Unfortunately, the high rise buildings they fall out of in urban environments, aren’t designed with felines in mind and they fall (sometimes several stories) only to land on the sidewalk, in the road, or if they’re lucky, in a garden.

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Pet Dental Health

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 24-Sep-2015 09:00:00

Dental health in your pet is more important than you may think. Bacteria living in the mouth can have effects on internal organ systems and it has become clear that oral health is important to overall health. 

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PPVH vet in Thailand Week 2: Shelter Vet & Teacher

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 18-Sep-2015 12:03:00

Read part I here: PPVH vet in Thailand Week 1

Our week at the Elephant Nature Park came to a close and we headed back to the city of Chiang Mai. Here, we worked at the Animal Rescue Kingdom: a shelter and hospital to over 100 homeless dogs. Like many countries in South East Asia, Thailand suffers from a dog overpopulation problem. The Animal Rescue Kingdom (ARK) offers shelter and treatment to animals rescued from the street and those abandoned by their owners. The shelter runs a sterilization program to help combat the overpopulation problem. 

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PPVH vet in Thailand: Week 1

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 10-Sep-2015 01:11:30

While most of my patients are small animals, I have a special place in my heart for one of the world's largest: the Asian elephant.  I was given an amazing opportunity to work alongside elephant veterinarians at the Elephant Nature Park, a sanctuary to over sixty orphaned, abused and injured elephants. 

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Meet the Newest Potts Point Vet Team Member: Ashley, Veterinary Nurse

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 28-Aug-2015 16:51:48

We are happy to introduce our newest Potts Point Vet team member and veterinary nurse: Ashley!

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Introducing: Potts Point Vet Blog!

Posted by Dr. Kristie Mientka on 19-Aug-2015 11:18:55

We are excited to announce the new Potts Point Vet Hospital Blog!

Here, you can find important information about the health and wellbeing of your pet. We’ll cover everything from puppy training tips to caring for your geriatric dog to common cat illnesses and more.

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