Appointments: (02) 6251 1444
16-18 Purdue St, Belconnen, ACT
(Parking via Gillott Street)
Mon - Fri: 8:30am - 5:30pm
Saturday: 8:30am - 1:00pm

Canberra Cat Vet Blog

The sense of smell

Saturday, October 28, 2017

The lining of cats’ noses has a large surface area for trapping smells. It’s 5 times as big as ours. They also have large olfactory bulbs, which are the part of the brain where smells are initially analysed. Cats are very sensitive to scent and can discriminate more scents than they are likely to meet in a lifetime. As a result we have to minimise the number of strong scents we present to our cats as they are easily overwhelmed by them.

Mice leave scent marks to let other mice know they are about. Cats locate the mice using these scent marks, especially at night when vision is less reliable. When the cat finds the mark the marking mouse is long gone so the cat waits patiently for the next mouse to come along and sniff the mark - then he pounces on the poor mouse

Cats use scent to mark their own territories, too. An anxious cat will urinate around the house to warn other cats off. Less threatened cats rub their faces onto objects leaving a pheromone behind. This makes them feel more comfortable and lets other cats know they are there. Feliway is an analogue of this pheromone and we recommend it for cats who are anxious or taking a while to settle in to a new environment.

Cats also have a sense that we lack. While we are not quite sure what they are sensing, we think that odours from other cats are dissolved in saliva and moved up two tubes in the roof of the mouth to the vomeronasal organ. When you see a cat pulling up its top lip in a funny way while apparently sniffing an object she’s probably sensing another cat has been there.


Feliway calms your cat

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Feliway is a copy of the pheromone that cats naturally rub around their environment to make them feel comfortable. It is odourless to us - but a potent calmer for cats.

Every time a cat rubs the side of its face against objects in the home, it leaves behind a pheromone to mark its territory. This pheromone helps them feel at home and happy.

Changes in and around your home can upset your cats and prevent them from following their normal routine of rubbing this pheromone around their area. They then feel less secure, and become stressed.

Activities such as redecorating, moving the furniture, having guests or tradesmen in, going to the cattery and moving home remove these natural pheromones from around the cat and cause stress.

Any change in your home organisation and schedule disturbs your cat, for example: a newborn baby, toddler or a new partner, a new work roster. Cats are very sensitive to routine and crave a stable environment.

A stressed cat may hide, scratch furniture, urinate outside the litter box, spray the curtains or become aggressive to other cats in the household.

Feliway helps maintain the scent that gives your cat a feeling of peace and calm, and reduces the stress that your cat is experiencing.

Dreading the vet visit???

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Bringing your cat to the vet can be a stressful experience for you, your cat, the vet and the nurse.


Some cats yowl as soon as the car starts, others pee in the carrier every trip.


An upset cat is difficult for your vet to examine and stress skews some blood tests.


How do we make visits to the vet less stressful for all concerned?


Leave the carrier out permanently in your home.  Many cats will rest or hide in it or use it as a play thing, particularly if it has been about since they were kittens. Pop some treats in the carrier so that your cat associates it with a pleasant experience.


Apply Feliway spray to bedding in the carrier regularly and just before transport. Feliway contains a natural pheromone that relaxes cats.  Lining the carrier with a favourite person's clothing may also calm your cat.


Withhold food before travel to prevent travel sickness and consequent negative feelings about car rides.


Short practice rides followed by a good experience such as a favourite food help some cats to relax in the car.


Cover the carrier with a towel or blanket, or place one over the cat in the carrier so that she can hide if she needs to.


In the waiting room place the carrier up off the ground on a seat or bench and well away from other cats. If your cat is wide-eyed, trembling, or huddled at the back of the carrier ask the receptionist to put her in a spare quiet room.


Because cats hide illness and pain so well they need regular, scheduled visits to the vet to ferret out problems like arthritis, thyroid and kidney disease and liver and heart decline. Annual visits are adequate for cats less than 8 years old. Older cats need checks more often, especially if any problems have been identified.


Unfortunately, cats often don’t show us they’re sick until it’s almost too late.


Reducing the stress of vet visits means more frequent checkups and a longer, healthier, and more comfortable life for your feline friend.


Open Night Invitation

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

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A calm, quiet haven for cats and their carers staffed by experienced, cat loving vets and nurses.

Canberra Cat Vet 16-18 Purdue St Belconnen ACT 2617 (parking off Gillott Street) Phone: (02) 6251-1444

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