Os­car our loyal fol­lower

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - PETS - Did you have to harp on to your par­ents about get­ting Os­car? How does he get along with the other cats in the neigh­bour­hood? Luke Bow­den What would you say Os­car’s per­son­al­ity is like? Who does Os­car love the most? So are there any more pets on the hori

OS­CAR, an eight- month- old tabby and white tom­cat, be­longs to nine- year- old Ava Monk and her six- year- old brother Dex­ter. And al­though their dad Sam thinks he is Os­car’s favourite, Ava and Dex­ter know where their moggy’s true loy­al­ties re­ally lie. No, not re­ally – Dad re­ally wanted a cat. Mum went to Syd­ney on hol­i­day one weekend and we went with Dad to pick him up while she was away. His best friend is Barney, who lives next door.

Barney’s been quite good about Os­car mov­ing onto his turf and they’ve be­come quite close to each other – and very af­fec­tion­ate. Most of the time he en­joys sleep­ing, es­pe­cially in sum­mer – he loves to sleep in the sun.

He’s quite play­ful and very ad­ven­tur­ous; a lot of the time he acts like a dog and will fol­low us up to half a kilo­me­tre away to the shops, which is pretty strange be­hav­iour for a cat.

Once, he came with us even fur­ther, a cou­ple of kilo­me­tres away to the park.

But we both know when he’s had enough of us play­ing with him be­cause he turns around and scratches us from head to toe.

He’s very clever as well – he sleeps in Mum and Dad’s bed­room and has learnt to wee in the shower if he needs to go to the toi­let. Dad’s al­ways pick­ing up Os­car and say­ing to him, ‘ You love me the most, don’t you?’ But it’s ev­i­dent Os­car loves both of us the most. Defi nitely. We both re­ally want to get a dog now as well.

Any­one in­ter­ested in shar­ing their best friends’ sto­ries can email

EX­ER­CISE ar­eas for dogs are usu­ally just shared pub­lic spa­ces where dogs are tol­er­ated.

Dog parks, on the other hand, are spa­ces which specifi cally in­vite dogs and own­ers to use them.

Ideally, dog parks are large, fully fenced ar­eas with sep­a­rate sec­tions for big and lit­tle dogs.

Brows­ing the in­ter­net, I’ve seen com­mu­nity dog parks in Canada where plan­ning has gone well be­yond pro­vid­ing fences, poo bins and drink­ing wa­ter.

Plan­ning for these parks in­cludes pro­vi­sion of dou­ble- gate en­trance and exit sys­tems, spe­cial wa­ter and play fea­tures, nat­u­ral vis­ual bar­ri­ers within the park and shaded ar­eas.

Con­ver­sa­tion re­gard­ing this con­cept is un­der way in Aus­tralia and ev­ery­one is in­vited to take part in a sur­vey on the use of dog parks.

Dr Su­san Hazel, of the Univer­sity of Ade­laide’s School of An­i­mal and Vet­eri­nary Sci­ences, is study­ing dog parks around Aus­tralia – more specifi cally, how of­ten these parks are used, what dog own­ers most like about them and what they would most like to change.

The fi nd­ings may help in fu­ture plan­ning and de­sign of spa­ces for dog ex­er­cise.

If you’d like to take the sur­vey, visit sur­veymon­key. com/ s/ WZ2X7KV.

Lo­cal coun­cils reg­u­larly re­view their dog man­age­ment poli­cies and any re­vised plans for dog ex­er­cise ar­eas are put out for pub­lic com­ment.

This process is un­der way for the Glam­or­gan Spring Bay Coun­cil, which man­ages much of Tas­ma­nia’s beau­ti­ful East Coast, in­clud­ing the town­ships and beaches around Or­ford, Swansea and Bicheno.

Find­ing a bal­ance to suit the needs of res­i­dents and hol­i­day- mak­ers with dogs with those of non- dog own­ers, while at the same time en­sur­ing the pro­tec­tion of shore­birds and other wildlife is a spe­cial chal­lenge.

The coun­cil is keen for feed­back be­fore Fri­day on whether there is in­ter­est in fenced ex­er­cise ar­eas.

They are open to ideas on how the mu­nic­i­pal­ity can be dog friendly with a min­i­mal im­pact on res­i­dent shore­birds and wildlife.

For de­tails and to sub­mit feed­back go to www. gsbc. tas. gov. au and fol­low the link to lat­est news.

Email abox­hall@ big­pond. com

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.