Mind Your Manners!

Google Maps location for Frankston Heights Veterinary Centre

Frankston Heights Veterinary Centre
231 Frankston-Flinders Rd
VIC 3199

03 5971 4888
03 5971 4887

I know that I’m going to sound like a grumpy old man, but these days manners aren’t what they used to be.

Having good manners seems to be a bit old-fashioned, but simple things like please and thank you, or waiting for someone else to walk through a door, are really important when forming an opinion about somebody. I would think less of a person who barged past me through a door, or who started eating while I was still serving the food. And I think that the same applies to our pets.

A polite, well-mannered pet is a pleasure to have around. But one who pushes and pulls, who jumps on you with excitement, who shies away in fear, or bites, or poos and wees inside, can be a huge stress. And after a while, you can forget why you wanted to have a pet in the first place.


March is the Australian Veterinary Association’s Polite Pet Month and, at Frankston Heights Veterinary Centre, we’re getting involved. This year the focus is on anxieties, phobias and fears, which can lead to withdrawal, destructive behaviours and even aggression.

If you are worried that your pet is anxious or fearful, please give us a call on 59714888, because there is a strong chance that we can help.


We are all strong believers that it is better to prevent a problem than to fix one, and this applies to behaviour problems as much as any other. Many bad behaviours develop because of miscommunication between pet and owner, so encouraging effective communication is a way of problem prevention.

Starting a training programme to teach a puppy how to behave, is the best way to start the pet/owner relationship. We try to get our puppies on the straight and narrow at Puppy Preschool when they are at their most impressionable (7-13 weeks).

Puppy PreSchool is different from puppy school, just as kindergarten is different from primary school. It’s all about appropriate socialisation and social play, but like the best forms of play, they learn without knowing it.

We find that by the time our preschool puppies graduate, they’re already on the right path to polite behaviour. And their owners have the skills to keep them going.


Just as parents of teenagers can suffer through the transition from child to adult, the owners of adolescent puppies and kittens can find that their pets’ behaviour changes as they turn into dogs and cats.

As part of our commitment to “Lifetime Care”, we see our growing patients as they start to turn into adults (about 10 months old). This adolescent examination is the perfect time to discuss (and correct) anything that could turn from a niggling trait into a frustrating problem.


Don’t worry if your dog or cat is already an adult, you haven’t necessarily missed the boat. Bad manners, and inappropriate behaviours can still be corrected – it’ll just take a bit more work because the older they are, the more they get set in their ways. If there is something that you’re worried about; please just pick up the phone!


Bad manners can creep in as they get older too. Although behaviour changes in older animals are much more likely to be associated with physical changes to the body – arthritic pain causing grumpiness, loss of sight or hearing causing anxiety, liver or kidney changes causing nausea, senility...


If your dog or cat has started doing something unusual, don’t ignore it because it could be the first sign that all is not right: please call the clinic, make an appointment to see if we can help.


Thanks to various websites for the pictures: pinkbluelovescute, theoutloudblog, ctkidsandfamily

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