Ask the Vet Q&A

Is there such a thing as too big when it comes to a dog in an urban environment?

Dr Romy is Sydney's leading mobile vet.

Dr Romy is Sydney’s leading mobile vet.

I can say from experience that most breeds are pretty happy in almost any environment so long as they are respected, loved and taken care of in a responsible manner. The only exception to this rule would be working dog breeds like cattle dogs, kelpies and border collies. These breeds really need a lot of routine vigorous exercise, and if these requirements are not met I have seen this manifest into undesirable behaviours on quite a few occasions. More specifically so long as you keep to a routine of taking your dog out  for a walk once or twice a day most breeds are pretty happy.

What about cats in the city?

A myth I’d like to dispel is cats needing access to outside spaces.  The majority of cats are absolutely fine and happy in an apartment with no access to  outside, especially when that is all they know. Sometimes transferring a cat that has been used to the outside to only inside can take a little longer, but they all get there eventually. Some cats actually prefer it, because they find the outside world threatening and in an apartment they are secure in knowing they will be left alone (by other cats!). The only thing they really want is to be with you and whatever the situation, they’re pretty happy so long as you stick to a routine. Cats pretty much grace us with their presence, and as in the days of ancient Egypt still expect a little worshipping. They are highly intelligent, need less physical commitment than dogs and make fantastic chilled out loving companions. People constantly tell me they don’t like cats, and it’s usually  because they have never had one.

Our survey so far is leaning anti-urban pet, how would you like to respond?

Urbanites – don’t be afraid of getting a cat if a dog is not right for your lifestyle – you will not regret it. There are so many rescue dog and cats needing homes that providing them with the love and companionship they crave is far more important than any perceived restrictions of your urban space and lifestyle.

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