“Ullr” the Cat Burglar Swallows a Ring

Introducing “Ullr” the cat burglar! Ullr presented to Dr Laura Piddington after Ullr’s mum suspected that Ullr may have swallowed her precious ring after he was seen to be playing with it and then it disappeared! Dr Laura confirmed via X-rays that Ullr had indeed swallowed the ring! Dr Laura performed an exploratory laparotomy to retrieve the missing ring and Ullr has now made an excellent recovery. Hopefully Ullr doesn’t attempt this party trick again!


Team News

After what seemed to be the never ending birth of baby boys at EHVH, we congratulate Dr Holly Boyden and nurse Caroline Engel on the birth of their beautiful baby girls! Both babies are doing well.

While Dr Holly is on maternity leave, we also welcome Dr Catherine Thomas to the team at EHVH. Dr Catherine did her undergraduate training with us, and has a keen interest in complex medical cases and diagnostic imaging.

We also welcome Amanda and Laura to our veterinary nursing team. Amanda has extensive nursing experience, having previously worked at a busy vet hospital in the Hunter Valley region. Amanda is also currently completing a Diploma in Emergency medicine. Laura now joins our team after finishing her Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing, and is also a trained phlebotomist!

Welcome Catherine, Amanda and Laura!



The Outback Pet Project

As you may of heard, our farmers are struggling in the state-wide drought, and their working dogs and pets are also seeing the flow on effects. To support our farmers and their families, we are currently running a fundraising project. We are asking our pet community to lend a hand by donating a bag of pet food or pet care products, and items will be taken to Tamworth on September 22nd, to be distributed to families in need.


NEW Cat Hospital & Surgical Theatre

We have exciting news to share for our feline patients at Erina Heights Veterinary Hospital. We have recently completed renovations and are proud to announce the opening of our dedicated feline hospital and surgical theatre. This space provides our feline patients with optimal patient care, away from the sounds and smells of dogs. We have specialised feline monitoring equipment and bedding to keep your cat comfortable during their stay. Our growing team of veterinarians also now have a new veterinary office and library.


Unlucky Gall Bladder Problem

“Lucky” an 11 year old Maltese terrier was referred from another clinic for abdominal ultrasound due to ongoing abdominal pain, vomiting and dehydration. His blood results pointed to liver disease; which in aged dogs can be due to cancer, infections, immune based disease, fatty liver disease, and a blocked bile duct often secondary to pancreatitis.


Our ultrasound showed a gall bladder with a particular image suggestive of a gall bladder mucocoele which is rather rare, and certainly offers a better prognosis than liver tumour; but still requires immediate surgery. The gall bladder fills with thick, bacteria laden bitumen like contents that requires a gall bladder removal asap. So “Lucky” had an exploratory laparotomy that same day, with the operation going very well despite the difficulty of access in this tiny patient.






Lucky made a prompt recovery and is now back to his best although his mum has to ensure he stays on a low fat diet.









Rehabilitation with Hydrotherapy

At Erina Heights Veterinary Hospital, we aim to provide a holistic approach to your pet’s care, such as with the provision of our rehabilitation and hydrotherapy services. We also continue to get many referrals from SASH animal physiotherapy since their move to Tuggerah recently.

Our main rehabilitation nurses Shannon, Emma and Tanya, are performing most of our underwater treadmill therapies for such wide ranging conditions as:

  • Post orthopaedic surgery rehabilitation (fractures, patellar luxation, anterior cruciate ligament rupture);
  • Obesity and weight loss management;
  • Intervertebral disc disease;
  • Spinal disease;
  • Osteoarthritis; and
  • Various muscular problems.

If you are interested in applying this treatment to your pet, please give us a call.

Team News

After Easter, Dr Michael Jones will be stepping back from his full time role as he enters his 40th year in veterinary practice. He will continue to do select surgeries and support the team behind the scenes. We welcome Dr Audrey Sokolowski to EHVH, originally from the  Gosford area, and comes with extensive medical and surgical expertise from a large regional city in NSW. Audrey also has the novel experience of being head vet in a baboon rescue hospital in South Africa. Please make her feel welcome.

Michael extends his gratitude to all our clients who have supported our hospital over the years…..

”I feel privileged and grateful to have been entrusted with the care of your pets. At EHVH we have a team of very skilled vets and nurses who share my vision for the future of this great hospital”.

You are likely well aware of the baby boom in the last year with our nursing staff especially, and we are now seeing a return of some familiar faces in Jacqui and Leah post maternity leave. Welcome back!

Professional Learning for Our Vets

EHVH invests heavily in continuing education of our vets so that our clients continue to receive the most up to date care. Recent post graduate education courses attended include Dr Holly Boyden in Sydney at a surgical dentistry and oral health seminar. Dr Alice Dunn ventured to the University of Queensland’s Gatton campus for a cruciate ligament surgical workshop over two days; and Dr Jacqui Letondeur attended the same venue for a two day ophthalmic surgery workshop.

TTA Workshop – Dr Alice Dunn, recently returned from an intensive workshop to complete her training in Tibial Tuberosity Advancement Surgery (TTA). Alice has been performing this surgery with Dr Michael Jones to provide the best option for cruciate repair. The workshop was run by surgical specialist Brent Higgins, the creator of the OssAbility system for TTA surgery. This system provides a structured and supported way of performing the advanced orthopaedic procedure. Alice also learnt how to perform epidural analgesia during the workshop and will provide this service for pain relief. Alice enjoys performing this surgery and the successful results it provides to her patients, making a sore leg stable and comfortable again.

Dentistry Workshop – Dr Holly Boyden attended a practical and theory dental course run by Dr Christine Hawke (Sydney Pet Dentistry). This course gave Holly a good refresher on best diagnosis, treatment and management of many common dog and cat dental conditions. The importance of good veterinary dental services is increasingly recognised as being vital for good health and best quality of life in our animal family members. In particular, the course focused on atraumatic and efficient extraction techniques, best pain relief practises, and the requirement of veterinary radiography and thorough exam under anaesthetic to allow effective diagnosis and treatment of most dental lesions.

Ophthalmology Workshop – Dr Jacqui Letondeur recently travelled to The University of Queensland veterinary campus to undertake a training course in small animal ophthalmology. Ophthalmology relates to the anatomy, physiology and pathology of eyes. The course covered diagnosing and treating ocular and peri-ocular conditions quickly and effectively, which is vital to saving the vision and maintaining the quality of life of many of our furry friends. The information gained at the course was not only invaluable for Jacqui’s clinical skills, but has the flow-on effect of better equipping Erina Heights Vets with helping the animal members of your family!


Does Your Dog Have Difficulty Breathing?


Have you ever wondered what can be done to help those squishy face dogs like British Bulldogs, Boxers, Pugs and French Bulldogs (also known as brachycephalic breeds), to breathe that little bit easier? Due to their airway conformation, these breeds are often prone to breathing and gastrointestinal issues. One of our veterinarians, Dr Melissa Kozaruk, recently attended a 2-day intensive workshop, to learn the latest surgical techniques for these patients and pass on these surgical skills to the rest of our vet team. “Yoda” is a French Bulldog who recently had surgery at Erina Heights Veterinary Hospital to correct his nose conformation, giving him a lot more space to get air in through his nostrils. Have a look at the before and after pictures- can you see the difference?

Fun Facts – Animal Sleep Patterns

Do you think your pet sleeps a lot? Well here are some fun facts. Dogs sleep an average 12-14 hours per day, while cats sleep an average of 12.5 hours a day. Horses and elephants only sleep 3-4 hours a day, whereas the little brown bat sleeps up to 20 hours a day! Some species have special adaptations for sleep. Dolphins and whales avoid drowning by sleeping with only half of their brain at a time, and some migrating birds can sleep while flying!