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Expat Relocating to Sydney with a dog (eventually)

Hi, I'm moving from Mexico to Sydney in the next couple months and though my company is being very helpful, there are some questions they can't really answer for me so I'm hoping this crowd will have some handy suggestions based on your wealth of experience! So here goes:

- I have a dog (he won't arrive until Oct/Nov due to immigration rules) but I'd like to find him a doggie day care to go while I work ... and ideally I would live near by, any suggestions of places you know & like?

- my office is up by North Ryde/Macquarie Park but I'd like to take advantage of things only Sydney has to offer like the views and the water so I'd rather not live up that far, what other neighborhoods are at an easy commute distance? and are nice and social/walk-able on weekends? and welcoming to expats?

- banks! I've heard I can open a bank account online and really need to get that started but I can't figure out which one might be best ... I've heard some of the local ones will charge more fees for transfers abroad etc but that the foreign banks maybe don't have that much coverage?

I know I will have lots of other questions on cars, transport, things to do, weather, etc so any tip/suggestion/recommendation is very very welcome at this stage.

Thanks to you all for your help!