My cat has always chased her tail like a dog, but now she bit the end off

HE is on a mission to help our pets. . . and is here to answer YOUR questions.

Sean, chief veterinarian at, a bespoke pet food company, has been helping with owner questions for ten years. He says, “If your pet is acting weird, is bad, or you want to know about diet or exercise, just ask. I can help keep pets happy and healthy. “


Veterinarian Sean McCormack answers your questionsPhoto credit: Doug Seeburg – The Sun

Q) When we saved our cat Cleo, she was in a house full of dogs.

She’s seven now and has always chased her tail like a dog, but now she’s started growling and is more aggressive with her tail.

Last week she actually bit off the end completely. The vet said it is usually dogs that do this. I am worried that it will have to be amputated.

DONNA STEVENSON, Stourbridge, West Mids

A) Cleo is a mysterious little character I can tell. My initial guess is that there is some physical problem with her tail that is causing pain, and she is chasing or biting it to try to get relief.

The other cause that comes to mind is a neurological problem, possibly the spinal cord and nerves to her tail, causing irritation. Or even a problem in the brain itself that is causing these manic episodes.

Behavioral reasons like stress can also cause cats to mutilate themselves. Has anything changed recently? Any new cats in the neighborhood bullying Cleo?

Your vets sound like they’re doing the right thing and developing the best plan.

A study of anti-anxiety drugs, if continued after healing, might be worth trying to rule out behavioral causes.

My cat always chased its tail like a dog, but now it has bitten off the end


My cat always chased its tail like a dog, but now it has bitten off the endCredit: Alamy

Q) I have a lovely 14 week old Lhasa Apso puppy named Teddy, but he eats rocks, plants, flowers and anything else he can get in his mouth.

He is exercised three times a day, eats his normal food properly, and his exercise is regular.

JAMES MURPHY, Royton, Oldham?

A) This is normal behavior for puppies who explore the world by mouth. Don’t react by playing it up, it can be viewed as a game. Instead, offer him a really exciting treat or toy and divert his attention.

Q) MY friend had an 11 year old pug. She suffered from suspicion that her trachea was collapsing and was taken to her vets.

The dog died of heart failure while under anesthesia. My friend strongly suspects that her dog was given an overdose. She has received a report on the procedure, but she clearly lacks the expertise to fully understand the implications.

Is there an independent body they could turn to to investigate?

GRAHAM KENNEDY, Helsby, Cheshire

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A) How about if you trust the veterinary team that has dedicated their life and career to animal welfare? A pug is automatically at high risk of general anesthesia because we bred him with faces so flattened that his airways are compromised. Add in age and a collapsing windpipe and this pug is even more risky.

I am very sorry for the loss of your friend, but heart failure under anesthesia was a risk explained when the informed consent form was signed.

It’s an impossible situation, but blaming the vet can be misguided grief. If she wishes, she can file a complaint with the Royal Veterinary College. But I bet your vet feels just as devastated by this result, and I would also bet that you were extra careful with this high-risk anesthesia. offers customized pet food offers customized pet food supplements

Q) MY daughter has a Frenchie named Roscoe who has strange behavior problems.

When family members visit, they run to their water bowl, drink the crowd, then bring out a white foam and pet food, then lick it up again. When he’s out in the garden, he licks the patio doors off.

BETTY DOUGLAS, Weldon, Northants

A) None of this really worries me as it might just be quirks in his personality. But there is a structural problem in the diaphragm that bulldogs are more prone to.

It’s called a hiatal hernia and it can cause vomiting or belching. If things get worse I would recommend a vet visit, but if he’s not stressed out he doesn’t need a behaviorist just yet.

Nine lives? Cats now live until 18

The numbers of old cats are increasing in the UK – and owners are encouraged to keep them fit and healthy in their twilight

This Wednesday is Ripe Moggie Day, and the Cats Protection charity has found the numbers of fat cats and those with arthritis are increasing.

Cats now often reach the ripe old age of 18


Cats now often reach the ripe old age of 18

There are now more than 12 million cats living in the UK, one in four cats having a home. That’s an increase from 7.5 million two years ago, according to the Pet Food Manufacturers Association.

With the improvements in veterinary care, cats’ lifespans are much longer than they used to be. They used to be considered old at 12, but it’s not uncommon for your cat to reach the mature age of 18.

And since pets live longer, says Cats Protection vet Dr. Sarah Elliott that it is important for cats over the age of seven to have a health check-up twice a year.

She said, “We are seeing a lot more of what is termed ‘geriatric’ diseases. Arthritis is very common, with a study showing that it affected more than 90 percent.

“Another factor is obesity, which is also increasing. This puts more stress on the joints and the arthritis worsens with age. “

Star of the week

ARTHUR, the King Charles Spaniel, was named Britain’s wettest puppy in a national competition.

He has loved the water since he plunged into a rock pool as a puppy and now enjoys diving in lakes and swamps.

King Charles Spaniel Arthur has been crowned Britain's wettest puppy dog


King Charles Spaniel Arthur has been crowned Britain’s wettest puppy dog

Arthur, seven, lives in Suffolk with veterinarian Kelly Sims, 29, and beat 500 other contestants to be voted Britain’s cutest wet pooch in a Canine Cottages contest.


Do you have an adventurous dog who loves running, walking, swimming, and hiking?

The Kurgo Journey Air Harness ( is designed for dogs who love to be active, with an “athletic cut” and a deep V-neck so that your dog’s shoulders can move freely .

It is made of breathable material and has padding on the chest plate, which reduces the strain on the neck, and is light at only 226 grams and does not rust.

We have five worth € 49.99 to give away. To enter, check your dog’s size on the website and email marked KURGO.

The terms and conditions apply. The closing date for entries is June 27th.


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Kelly said, “He loves to get wet and his enthusiasm knows no bounds.

“We have to be careful around ponds and dikes because he sniffs water and dips into it.

“He prefers to go swimming where it is safe and to chase after his second greatest love, his trusty tennis ball.”

Holly Willoughby loves to cuddle her cat early in the morning