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Pet Subjects: 'How can we curb our cat's appetite?'

Pete Wedderburn
Pet Subjects: 'How can we curb our cats appetite?' Credit: Patrick Bolger/Getty Images

Dear Pete

My Yorkshire terrier, Jack, is two years old and has been with us since he was a pup, but now my partner and I are splitting up. We both love Jack dearly. It would suit us to share him, having him for a week each, in turn. Do you think that he would adapt, as he loves us both, or would he be too unsettled by the change?

PS, Worcester

Dear PS

While dogs like a regular routine, many are able to adapt to unusual situations as long as their needs are met: regular exercise and attention, a consistent diet, a comfortable sleeping place, and a reliable human companion. It would help to write a summary of routines and responsibilities: be clear about considering what happens if he has an accident or falls ill. Vets sometimes get caught in the crossfire of situations like this, so you need to specify who gives consent and who pays the bills if something goes wrong.

Credit:  Yegor Aleyev/ TASS

Dear Pete

Our rescued cat will eat anything we leave around, including cutlery, cooking utensils, food wrappers etc. Our vet says he is bordering on obese and we feel the four meals a day he receives – wet and dry – to be sufficient. How can we curb his appetite?

PC, London

Dear PC

First, stop leaving anything remotely edible within reach, and use a spray deterrent (e.g. the Ssscat device) to teach him not to jump up on to counters and tables. At the same time, make mealtimes slower and more interesting by using puzzle feeders and kibble-releasing toys (e.g. catit.com), and spend more time playing with him, say using feather-and-wand toys. If he is entertained, he’ll be less likely to gravitate to searching for food as something to do.

Taking a pet to Europe in November? Get ready now

If a no-deal Brexit comes to pass, pet travel from the UK to Europe will become more complicated. The animal will need a rabies vaccine, followed by a blood test one month later, then a three-month delay before travel is possible. The deadline for preparing for travel in early November is early July. If you plan to travel to Ireland or the Continent with your pet, start this process now.

Rescue pet

Tess

Tess is a lovely six-year-old German shepherd. Phone Mayhew on 020 8962 8000 or visit themayhew.org for more information.

Send queries to [email protected] or tweet 
@PeteTheVet. All sick animals should be taken to a vet.

Pet Subjects by Peter Wedderburn is published by Aurum Press (£12.99). To order a copy  visit books.telegraph.co.uk