Aging dogs need attention and exercise – just not at the same level they did when they were young, writes dog trainer Wendy Graydon.

Wendy Graydon is a dog trainer and author of How to train your barking, howling, jumping up, pulling on the lead and won’t come when it’s called dog.

Remember when you used to get up and have a hard time not tripping over your excited puppy as soon as you whispered the ‘W’ word? The changes in your dog creep up slowly and caring for your once young dog in its twilight years can be a real challenge. 

Your older dog will still need attention and care just like it did when it was younger and its life can still be fun and fulfilling even though it’s a bit slower. Noticeable changes can be poor...

In some neighbourhoods you can shut your eyes and swear that you’re at the kennels. The howling, barking and yapping can be almost deafening, and it’s no wonder our non dog-loving neighbours are going insane! 

Dogs bark. It’s a fact of life. This is how they communicate that they are afraid, bored, anxious, happy or excited. 

Nevertheless, barking until all hours of the morning is simply not acceptable, nor is continuous barking from dawn until dusk. Because of the growing number of nuisance dogs, local councils have been forced to find ways of ensuring dog owners control their dogs’ ‘talking’ habits. This means your dog’s barking problems may not only cause your neighbours headaches, it could also cause your pocket some serious...

Budgerigars are very popular pets for good reason; they have loads of playful character for their size, can be taught to talk, and they are inexpensive to buy and keep. As a member of the parrot family, budgies are very gregarious and make ideal companions, providing hours of entertainment. 

Native to central Australia, wild budgies fly about in huge, noisy flocks. The cage-bred budgie is far removed from its wild cousin; it’s much bigger in size and cannot survive in the wild. Unlike undomesticated budgies, pet budgies also come in a vast array of colours.budgies

When looking for a pet, try to get a young bird. Young budgies are distinguished by the horizontal bars on their forehead, which disappear after three or four months. Look for...

Aside from cats and dogs, there are numerous small creatures that will make a wonderful addition to your family. Here’s a brief outline of the small animal companions available.

Pet Rabbits

Rabbits are sociable pets and the more time you spend with them, the more friendly and tame they will become. They need lots of stimulation and interaction, as well as time out of their hutch to exercise.

Average Cost Of A Pet Rabbit

There are many different breeds of rabbits in New Zealand and Australia, including the Dwarf Lop, NZ White, French Angora and Flemish Giant. Prices can range from $10 - $100.

How Many Rabbits?

Rabbits can become aggressive when they reach sexual maturity and may have to be separated. Speak to your pet...

As we all know, cats are clever creatures – but can they be trained? The answer is yes. Spending quality time teaching your cat the basics not only enriches your relationship, it also enables you to live together in harmony. 

Cats can be trained to perform a variety of basic exercises, such as using a cat flap or walking on a lead, as well as more complex tasks like retrieving items and shaking paws. However, for many pet owners, training may simply be a way to teach their pet important everyday activities – to be groomed, take medication, come inside when called, or respect the family furniture!

The key to training cats is treat-based incentives. Find the food treat they most like and reward them with it immediately after they...