21 December 2007

Happy Holidays!

Hi loyal readers! We at Dog Clothes Horse will be taking next week off, but we'll be back January 2nd, 2008. To all of our readers and our lovable canines, we hope you have a very Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy New Year!

Keeping Pets Safe During Holidays

With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it can be easy to forget about keeping our pets safe during this busy time. Here are some tips to keep your pets happy and healthy during the holidays:

*Secure your tree. Cats love playing with tinsel; they’ve been known to topple entire trees by pulling on tinsel or ornaments hanging from branches. Cats and puppies are so fascinated by tinsel and ribbon they may make a meal of it, which keeps veterinarians in surgery on Christmas Day.

*Santa doesn’t need the calories, so don’t leave him cookies. Chocolate can make pets sick.

*Some pets, especially puppies and kittens, will munch on errant Christmas tree needles, which they can choke on.

*When choosing a tree, consider one with pet-friendly pliable needles – such as a Douglas fir or white pine. They won’t stick in your pet’s paws.

*They’ll be much mistletoeing and hearts will be glowing, but not if the pets are near to munch on. Fresh mistletoe and that holly can make pets very sick.

*Curious about shining flames, pets can knock over a candle and start a fire. Fumes from scented candles can be deadly to birds because of their sensitive respiratory systems.

*Pets Deserve Presents Too: When you wrap gifts (check out catnip wrapping paper), don’t forget to give something special to include your pets – after all, they’re family too!

[Source: Steve Dale's Pet World]

18 December 2007

Adopt a Pet for the Holidays

Many shelter employees have mixed feelings over families adopting animals during the holidays. They feel that people will make an impulse adoption and will then later return the animal back to the shelter after the holidays.

But Mike Arms, president and CEO of the Helen Woodward Animal Center in Rancho Santa Fe, California, says "why not" to animal adoptions during the holidays. Arms said, “All these people are going to get a pet anyway. If shelters close their doors – they are only leaving themselves out as an option. The public will get pets where they can, from backyard breeders or pet stores. Now, you have an impulse purchase about to happen, which is exactly what you don’t want. Most shelters today screen people, so not all pets are adopted to all families. There’s a great deal of effort to match the lifestyle of the family with a pet’s personality. The backyard breeders and the pet stores are all about their love of the buck.”

After his years of experience, Arms noticed that animals adopted around the holidays are less likely to be returned to the shelter.

[Source: Steve Dale's Pet World]

17 December 2007

Gifts from the Heart for Pet Lovers

This year, instead of giving pet owners and lovers the same old gifts they get every year (and let's face it they have everything), why not get them a gift that really counts and helps animals in need? In the process, you receive a tax deduction and the animals benefit.

You can make a donation in a dog’s or person’s name to the Morris Animal Foundation’s Cure Canine Cancer Campaign. The Morris Animal Foundation is determined to cure cancer in dogs in the next 10 to 20 years. The need is indisputable since one in every four dogs dies of cancer. The Morris Animal Foundation is working in conjunction with many organizations, including the National Cancer Institute.

Meals on Wheels has been helping seniors in need for a very long time. Last year, in conjunction with Banfield, the Pet Hospitals and Banfield Charitable Trust – a program began to feed those seniors’ pets called Season of Suppers. When volunteers deliver meals for the seniors, they also deliver meals for pets.

“For many elderly Americans, their Pet and their Meals on Wheels volunteer are the only friends that they interact with during the day,” says U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), a long-standing champion for senior issues.

Visit any of the 655 Banfield, the Pet Hospitals locations and make a donation to help support Season of Suppers. A 2008 calendar is available for a donation of $13 or more. Donations can also be made at www.banfieldcharitabletrust.org.

[Source: Steve Dale's Pet World]

14 December 2007

Lost Cat Found After 7 Years

Once in a while, a “lost cat returns” story comes along that is just too unbelievable to be true. This would be one of those - if the cat in question wasn’t still wearing the same collar she’d been wearing when she disappeared seven years ago.

Found less than two miles from her original home in Greenacres, Washington, Sarah seemed mostly herself, though she was missing a bit of an ear and was a little skittish around her food, as if half expecting someone to come along and snatch it away at any moment. Local animal folks are quick to point out that this is one good reason you should have your pets licensed. If Sarah hadn’t been wearing that collar, she likely wouldn’t have been returned to her family.

The other family cats, who figure prominently in Sarah running off in the first place, were none too happy to see Sarah return. But Sarah has picked up some street smarts in the meantime and is currently spending most of her time snoozing in a bedroom with the door closed.

For those of you who haven’t licensed your pets, you should consider doing so now.

[Source: Itchmo]

13 December 2007

Uninvited Guests?

There was an interesting article in the NY Times today that talked about us dog lovers maybe over stepping boundaries and bringing our dogs to events that we should not have? Yikes! I can be accused of such bad behavior because they're with me all the time and I sometimes forget that not everyone thinks the same way. Oops! Here's an excerpt:

IT was a dark and stormy night — actually four stormy nights — when Jayme Otto, 31, and her husband, Ryan Otto, 33, drove 1,200 miles from their home in Boulder, Colo., to her parents’ house in Cleveland for Christmas.

“We traveled all this way to bring our yellow Labrador, Cody Bear, home to spend time with his grandparents,” Ms. Otto said, “grandparents” being dog-person-speak for her parents.

Besides wanting Cody Bear “to participate in his favorite yearly activity of unwrapping gifts and destroying all the boxes,” as Ms. Otto put it, they wanted the dog to meet her brother’s fiancée.

But on Christmas morning, a commotion ensued: the fiancée was allergic to dogs and broke out in hives.

“The dog was banished to the guest bedroom and we were unable to share our Christmas morning with Cody Bear,” Ms. Otto said bitterly. “The family blowup between my brother and I over the dog resulted in my mother not speaking to me for two months and my brother for four.” This Christmas will mark the first time that the Ottos will not be returning home.
I hope non-pet owners will understand, we're not being callous (on the contrary, we love our furbabies and all people), we just think differently.

[Source: New York Times, Image: Getty Images]

12 December 2007

Top Dog Cars in 2007; Ones to Look for in 2008

Looking for a pet-friendly car? Want an automobile that is tailored to fit your furry friends and make them comfortable? DogCars.com has rated the top cars for you and your four-legged companions in 2007, and has also added some cars to look for in 2008.

The best overall Top Dog Car for 2007 rated by DogCars.com is the Honda Element. It’s easy to clean and even has anti-noseprint windows. The Honda Element gets the top prize and wins the first ever Dog Car of the Year Award.

The runners up for the Top Dog Cars for 2007 are:

Best Overall Value: Suzuki Forenza: Comfortable, spacious, great fuel economy, and perfect for budget-conscious consumers. You can put everything you think of into it, as the dogcars.com team did, including a cat tree and a pair of bouncy retrievers - and there was still room for groceries!

Best Luxury SUV: Land Rover Range Rover: For those who favor luxury and off-road capability over purchase price and fuel economy. Plenty of room for dogs and all their gear with 71 cubic feet of well-designed cargo space.

The 4 vehicles to watch out for in 2008 are: The all new ScionXB, Volvo XC70, Dodge Grand Caravan, and Buick Enclave. The 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid was also marked as worth a test-drive for dog lovers who want a cleaner ride.

Want to learn more about these dog-friendly rides and see the rest of the 2007 winners? Go here.

[Source: DogCars.com]

11 December 2007

DCH Spotlight: Snowman Fuzzy Hoodie Sweater

Hey everyone, check out this adorable sweater I bought at Modern Tails for my pup, Tiger Lily. I've always loved dressing her up for the holidays, and when I saw this adorable red and white striped sweater with the cute snowman on the back, I couldn't resist! What's your idea of the perfect holiday outfit for your dog?

10 December 2007

Boy Donates Birthday Money to Therapy Dog Program

Instead of asking for gifts for his birthday, Colby Jarvis asked for donations for VCU Medical Center's Therapy Dog Program, which has about 30 therapy dogs. After meeting Bama, a member of the program, and learning how much the program helps people, including other children, he decided he would donate his birthday money - $177, to the program.

“I really wanted to help some dogs,” Colby said. “I like to take care of dogs and I really love dogs.” Colby has his own dog at home named Briar. Colby's father, Scott Jarvis, said, “I’m extremely proud. He did this all on his own, and I think he’s always had a really giving spirit. All three kids have already, but this was just something really extraordinary for him, and we’re really impressed, really proud.”

We could all learn a valuable lesson from Colby. Way to go!

[Source: NBC12]

06 December 2007

Growing Trend of Pets as Part of Family

Pets are not just companions, but they are part of our family. They are our furbabies, our kids, our four-legged family members. According to a Harris Poll, more and more families are considering their pets part of the family.


* 88% pet owners consider their pets part of the family, while 7% don't.
* Women are more likely to believe this at 93% versus men at 84%.
* Dog owners are slightly more likely (93%) than cat owners (89%) to believe this.

* 63% of Americans currently have pets.
* Women (at 68%) are more likely than men (at 57%).
* 71% of Generation Xers (aged 31-42) have pets.
* 67% of Baby Boomers (aged 43-61) have pets.
* Those from the Midwest are most likely (67%) to have a pet.
* Those from the East are least likely (58%) to have a pet.

* Dogs are the most popular - 7 in 10 pet owners have a dog.
* 52% of pet owners have a cat.
* 15% of pet owners have a fish.
* 7% of pet owners have a bird.
* 12% - other.

* 35% have one.
* 25% have two.
* 13% have three.
* 7% have four.
* 6% have five.
* 13% have six or more.

* 65% have bought their pets holiday presents, while 37% have bought birthday presents.
* 71% of dog owners have bought their pet a holiday present compared to 63% of cat owners.
* 42% of dog owners have gotten a birthday present for their pet compared to 33% of cat owners.

* 23% of pet owners cook especially for them.
* 23% of dog owners dress their pet in clothing, compared to 14% of cat owners.
* 10% bring their pets to work with them.

[Source: Itchmo]

05 December 2007

Dog to Receive Medal for Saving Woman's Life

There’s a new Lassie in town. Ghillie, an English Springer Spaniel, is a hero for saving a woman's life.

Two years ago, the then nine-month-old dog came up to a group of workmen and started barking and running back and forth along a path. At first, the workers were confused and uncertain of what Ghillie wanted them to do. The workers then realized that the dog wanted them to follow him. He led them to Mary Wilson, who had collapsed, was unconscious, and had fallen in some undergrowth.

The workers called an ambulance and Mary was rushed to the hospital, and she recovered from her epileptic seizure. Now, Ghillie is receiving an award, the PDSA’s Gold Medal, known as the animals’ George Cross, for his life-saving actions.

Ghillie’s owner, Mary's son, said, “He’s a fantastic dog. That it was my mother who he saved through his actions has made him a very special dog for all the family.”

Mary's husband added: "To us he is a very intelligent dog. What he did was fantastic, and Mary and I will forever be grateful for what he did."

The director of the animal charity that will be awarding Ghillie said, "His devotion and persistence that fateful December day undoubtedly saved Mary's life. This is an extraordinary story of that unique and inexplicable bond between people and their pets.”

Great job Ghillie!

[Source: Itchmo]

04 December 2007

Rescued After Living on Freeway Median

Oleander is one lucky dog, after having survived living by the median bushes on Interstate 10 in Banning, California for two months. Oleander was recently rescued and comfortably awaiting a home at a Riverside County animal shelter in Banning.

When Oleander was brought into the shelter on November 17th, she weighed only 35 pounds. Luckily, although Oleander was extremely thin, she was in good health except for a fractured front right leg. She will undergo surgery in a few weeks to fix her leg, which will be paid by the Department of Animal Services.

Oleander is believed to have survived all this time by eating mice and other rodents. The Department of Animal Services hopes to find someone to "foster" Oleander temporarily before and after she undergoes surgery. After her surgery, she will be up for adoption.

Oleander is a miracle dog for sure!

[Source: The Press-Enterprise and Itchmo]

03 December 2007

Dog Survives Euthanasia Attempt & 4 Days in Freezer

I was utterly disgusted and enraged after reading this story:

Animal control officer Jamie Glandon was completely shocked when she opened a freezer at the Rushville Animal Shelter in Indiana. She found Gabby, a dog, alive in the freezer where the carcasses of euthanized animals are put until they are discarded. It is believed that Gabby was euthanized four days before and survived being in the freezer for all that time.

Glandon said, “I went into the freezer to dispose of an animal, and (Gabby) popped her head up out of a barrel.” She said she was ordered to euthanize Gabby again, but Glandon refused and took the dog to a veterinarian instead. Glandon added that four other dogs, a border collie and three black lab puppies, survived euthanasia attempts since the summer at the shelter.

Jack Hill, the shelter director, has been suspended over the allegations that five dogs have survived euthanasia attempts. Glandon said police have confiscated her computer at the shelter and she fears that she may lose her job because she spoke up about the incidences and refused to euthanize Gabby.

She stated, “Gabby is in hiding. She is somewhere where she is safe, and she is recuperating. We’re not making her location known to anybody for safety reasons for her.” Glandon hopes to find her a new home after she recovers.

Hopefully, Jack Hill, the horrible director, will lose his job. Kudos to you Glandon, for doing the right thing and sticking by Gabby!

[Source: Itchmo]

29 November 2007

Trouble Receiving Death Threats

We all remember Trouble, Leona Helmsley's dog, who left the dog $12 million after she passed away. Trouble has become one of America's most famous dogs and the richest dog to date. This little Maltese may seem to have it all, but now there are reports that she is getting death threats.

Helmsley’s longtime friend John Codey is in charge of caring for Trouble and her trust fund. Codey said that Trouble has received about 20 to 30 death threats. He said the threats have stated, “I’m gonna kill the dog” or ”I’m gonna kidnap the dog. I need the $12 million.”

Codey said that Trouble has a rotating security team to make sure she is safe at all times. She even uses an alias when traveling on board her private plane. “We’ve had problems keeping her identity confidential and we had to change her name even to take her on the aircraft. We called her “Bauble” instead of Trouble,” detailed Codey.

He added, “Trouble is very much alive and well taken care of. I can tell you that she’s in this country and she’s in a nice warm climate.”

[Source: Itchmo]

28 November 2007

Pretty in Pink

Looks like this little princess knows exactly how to rock her favorite outfit and look great doing it! What kind of outfits do you like to dress your Poochie in?

[Source: CaninePics.com]

26 November 2007

Puppy Mill Action Week

The Humane Society of the United States has announced the week of November 25 - December 1 to be Puppy Mill Action Week.

The purpose of this week is to encourage people not to buy puppies from a pet store or over the Internet, which often get their puppies from puppy mills, and to inform the public that they can help put an end to puppy mills.

Stephanie Shain, director of The HSUS’ Stop Puppy Mills campaign, said, “People think they are rescuing a dog from a pet store, when that purchase is only making room for hundreds more puppy mill dogs to be bred and sold. The public should be concerned not only with that one puppy in the window, but also for the mistreated breeding dogs caged for years back at the puppy mill. Because people buy the puppies, these dogs will spend their lifetime confined, churning out puppies.”

Numerous celebrities are also in support of Puppy Mill Action Week including: Nathan Lane, Patricia Arquette, Kelly Ripa, Molly Shannon and others. For more information and to sign a pledge to stop puppy mills, go here

[Source: Itchmo.com]

21 November 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

Everyone at Dog Clothes Horse wish all our readers a wonderful Thanksgiving! Travel safe, eat well and shop plenty! If you need some gift ideas for your pooch, stop by Modern Tails for excellent Christmas gift ideas.

Enjoy free shipping for the rest of November at Modern Tails. Use the coupon code NOVSHIP at checkout to receive your discount, good until November 30, 2007. Limit one coupon per customer, per order; cannot be combined any other specials, discounts or coupons. Not redeemable for cash or gift cards, nor is it valid toward previous purchases.

We'll be off the rest of the week, but will be back Monday to chat about dogs and dog clothes!

DCH Spotlight: Uptown Girl Brushed Dog Sweater

This is what Annie's wearing to Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow night. Appropriately fabulous! Does your dog have a favorite Thanksgiving oufit?

19 November 2007

Three Legged Dog Hailed As Hero

Tripp may only have three legs, but that doesn't stop him from doing anything he sets his mind and heart on.

This Golden retriever was once considered un-adoptable and was about to be put down. But a person stepped in and rescued from his horrible fate and sent Tripp to the Tennessee Valley Golden Retriever Rescue foundation. He was then placed with a foster family.

His new owner, Ellen Franklin, said that when she first met Tripp, he had an amputation of his back left leg. When she saw this three-legged dog, it was love at first sight. Tripp was able to adapt quickly to only having three legs. Franklin said, “No one has told him that he’s a dog with three legs. He chases squirrels and does anything the rest of them can do.”

This Golden retriever is also a hero because he saved the lives of the Franklin family when their house was on fire. He woke up Franklin to alert her of the fire, and the family was able to get out in time. For his brave act, he was awarded with the G.R.A.C.E. award for his heroism.

Tripp is also a therapy dog and visits patients at hospitals in the area. Not only is this dog a hero, but he’s now a model. Tripp is “Mr. April” for a calendar for the Tennessee Valley Golden Retriever Rescue.

Way to go, Tripp!

[Source: Itchmo.com]

16 November 2007

I'm Such a Prankster

Do you think that adorable dog sticking out his tongue is trying to tease us? My dog loves to tease me too, by constantly hiding my remote control so I have trouble finding it! What does your dog do to tease you?

[Image: CaninePics.com]

Kissing Pups

Although it does look like the dog may be biting the other's nose, I think that's just his way of showing affection. Do you have two dogs who like to kiss? Or if not, how does your dog show his affection for you?

[Image: CaninePics.com]

15 November 2007

Hungry for a Midnight Snack?

I'm always hungry for a lite Husky snack in the middle of the night :-) Does your dog like to hang out in strange places?

[Image: CaninePics.com]

Just Washing the Dishes

...with my tongue! How does your dog find tasty left-over goodies?

[Image: CaninePics.com]

Abandoned Dog Becomes Inspiration to Others

More than two years ago, when Duane Hodges found Dobie, a stray black Labrador puppy, who was severely injured, he had a right-hip fracture and a break in his right leg.

According to a veterinarian, Dobie was believed to have been thrown from an upper level of a parking garage, based on his injuries. Duane Hodges works near the St. Louis Park, Minn. parking garage where Dobie was found injured. He believes the intent was to end the dog's life, and he is angry about it. After Hodges went to visit Dobie at a clinic he said that Dobie ran to him and that it broke his heart.

After that, Hodges decided to pay the $5,000 cost of surgery and underwater treadmill therapy Dobie would need to get better. Hodges explained that he didn't even think twice about the cost, because he's a dog lover and his heart went out to Dobie. The surgery was a success. Now, more than 2 years later, Dobie has been adopted into a loving home. His owner said, “There are no hip joints there so when you see him go down the hall there’s not hips but he does really well.”

Dobie uses his disability to help people with severe disabilities. This therapy dog has been visiting Phoenix Alternatives every week for the past three months. He brings a smile to those that can’t speak, walk or use their hands. One man, who can’t speak, uses a device to speak and play with Dobie. A recording goes off that says, “Dobie, sit, good dog.”

“There were a lot of people that really gave a lot of encouragement, a lot of help in getting him here and it’s just a way to thank them is to let him help someone else. That’s what he loves doing,” said his owner.

[Source: Itchmo.com and WCCO]

14 November 2007

Man Marries Dog to Ward off Curse

A man in southern India married a female dog in a traditional Hindu ceremony in a bid to atone for stoning two dogs to death.

The 33-year-old man married the sari-draped dog at a temple in the southern state of Tamil Nadu on Sunday after an astrologer said it was the only way to cure himself of a disability, the Hindustan Times newspaper reported. P. Selvakumar told the paper that he had been suffering since he stoned two dogs to death and strung them up in a tree 15 years ago.

"After that my legs and hands got paralyzed and I lost hearing in one ear," the paper quoted him as saying. Family members chose a stray female dog named Selvi who was then bathed and clothed for the ceremony. He promised that he would take care of Selvi for the rest of his life. The family and the groom had a feast to celebrate, while Selvi received a bun to eat.

[Source: CNN Europe]

13 November 2007

Dog Survives Swallowing Wii Remote

This is another story to remind pet owners of what not to leave around our curious and hungry pets.

The Becknell family took their three-year-old Labrador retriever to the veterinarian when the dog started vomiting blood. The animal hospital took X-rays of the dog’s stomach and it appeared that there was a TV remote in his stomach. The veterinarian induced vomiting on the dog. Pieces of an old TV remote came out from the dog’s stomach, but there was something else in there besides the TV remote.

“The vet started massaging the dog’s belly and it just came flying out of the dog,” said Marie Becknell. “I knew what it was right away by the color and shape of it. It was my son’s video game remote. The dog had swallowed the boy’s Nintendo Wii controller.”

The curious dog had to undergo surgery to have the remote removed. He recovered from his ordeal, but the Wii Remote did not fare so well. It had to be tossed into the garbage. The son’s punishment for leaving the controller out was two weeks allowance to replace the Wii remote.

Here are the top ten most common items surgically removed from pets, according to Veterinary Pet Insurance:
1. Socks
2. Underwear
3. Panty Hose
4. Rocks
5. Balls
6. Chew Toys
7. Corn Cobs
8. Bones
9. Hair Ties/Ribbons
10. Sticks

Other frequently ingested objects include nails, sewing needles and nipples from baby bottles. But VPI has also received medical records for pets that have swallowed pagers, hearing aids, drywall, snail bait, batteries, rubber bands, toy cars, and sand with bacon grease poured on it.

The best thing pet owners can do to prevent costly foreign body removal surgery is keep a clean living space. This includes making sure that personal items are not left on the floor or within easy reach of pets and remaining aware of each pet’s chewing tendencies. Certain objects may appeal more to some pets than others. Knowledge of a pet’s tastes and tendencies can help pet owners exercise caution when letting a pet near objects that could be accidentally swallowed. Also remember that table scraps can contain excessive grease, bones or other objects not easily digested by pets.

[Source: Itchmo.com]

12 November 2007

Boys Honored For Raising Money For Police Dog Vests

Chicago Police are applauding the efforts of two young boys who raised money to help protect department canines.

Jonathan and David Walker-Moses, ages 5 and 6, were honored at the department’s monthly Awards Ceremony on Thursday for raising money to buy a protective vest for a police dog as a part of the Illinois Vest a Dog Program. The boys raised the funds by sponsoring a garage sale with the help of their mother last summer, according to a release from the police.

Jonathan and David were presented with certificates of appreciation at the ceremony, during which a check was presented on behalf of the boys to the department's Canine Training Center, the release said. On average, dog vests cost about $800 each.

Great job, Jonathan and David!

[Source: WBBM 780]

Hip Hop Mogul Speaks Out Against Dog Fighting

Russell Simmons, a hip-hop mogul and co-founder of Atlanta-based hip-hop label Def Jam Records, is speaking out against dog fighting. He recently shot a public service announcement for the Humane Society of the United States and the BeKIND Foundation.

The public service announcements will run on YouTube and on the organizations’ websites starting Tuesday. The ads feature a muzzled dog being thrown into a fighting ring, and Simmons saying, “There is nothing slick, cool or glamorous about dog fighting.”

This is not the first time that Simmons has spoken up against animal cruelty. In 2005, he joined the ASPCA and launched a national campaign to help raise awareness of and eliminate animal abuse and neglect. Simmons said, “There is nothing cool about being cruel to animals, they have no choice and no voice. Animal cruelty happens every day in America and people just sit by and do nothing.”

Kudos to you, Russell Simmons!

[Source: Itchmo.com]

08 November 2007

Dogs Get SAD Too

As autumn moves into winter, don't be surprised if your dog has less energy and generally seems a bit down on life; he could be suffering from Seasonal Affected Disorder (SAD).

According to the PDSA, the UK's leading veterinary charity, 30% of dog owners questioned in a recent survey said that their dogs became less playful and seemed 'sadder' during the winter. In the same survey 40% of owners also thought that their dogs slept more frequently and for longer periods of time, and quite often lost all interest in walks.

SAD is a disorder many people suffer from in the winter months; it's believed that the lack of sunlight to the eye's retina increases the amount of melanin produced by the body. It's thought that a release of melanin into our bloodstream depresses our mood and makes us feel drowsy. Looking at our dogs in the same context, then it's not surprising they appear to show the symptoms of SAD during the winter months. Added to this, dogs pick up on our moods, so if we are affected by SAD our dogs are more likely to show the symptoms too.

If you find your dog is quieter during winter, keep an eye on the amount of food you are giving him - it's all too easy for inactive dogs to pile on the weight, so you may need to cut back on the rations. You could also try making exercise time more exciting to lift your dogs spirits - short, energetic games are more fun than long walks on cold, dark evenings. Try playing fetch with a favorite toy, or a game of frisbie. Games like that lift both your spirits and keep you warm!

[Source: DogTopic.com]

07 November 2007

Cheap Drive-Thru Rabies Shots for Pets

What do you usually get from a drive-thru? Coffee, late night fast-food, your prescription? What about your pet's rabies shots? That's exactly what pets were doing on Saturday afternoon at the Baptist School of Nursing.

The Humane Society of Saline County in Arkansas sponsored a drive-thru rabies event this past weekend. Instead of waiting at a vet’s office, dozens of dogs and cats got their rabies shots while waiting in the car. Not only was the rabies shot convenient for many pet owners, it only cost $10.

Veterinarian Kim Miller said many of the animals that received rabies shots would probably never have gotten the shot if this drive-thru service was not provided. At the vet, rabies shots can run as much as $65.

[Source: Today's THV]

Animal Cruelty Investigator Suspended After Rescuing a Dog

Three months ago, Tre Smith, an animal cruelty investigator for the Toronto Humane Society, saved a dog from an extremely hot car. After saving the dog’s life, Smith has been suspended for the past three months by the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Smith responded to a call where Cyrus, a Rottweiler, was stuck in a car during an intense heat wave. He broke the car window, and pulled out Cyrus to safety. Cyrus’ owner came out when he heard his car alarm go off. Smith said the man seemed to be dangerous and abusive and could be a potential threat to people around the scene.

Making a quick decision, Smith knew he had to get back to Cyrus and save his life, so he handcuffed the man to his car while he went to tend to the weak dog. While the man was handcuffed, bystanders threw objects at the man, and he was bleeding when officers took him away. After the incident, the Ontario SPCA suspended Smith’s license pending an internal review to see if Smith’s conduct of handcuffing the man was appropriate.

For the past three months, Smith has been “pushing paper” around while the Toronto Humane Society and OSPCA have been arguing over access to information, incident reports, decisions and disclosure. “The irony is that people who are caught and punished for animal cruelty get less time than what I’ve served,” Smith said. “The clear victims here are the animals of Toronto. By taking my license away, it’s one less officer on the road protecting animals from cruelty.”

Two weeks ago, Smith received a letter from OSPCA saying that they are “seriously considering” revoking his license. OSPCA CEO said that this was intended for Smith to present his side of the story to the organization. Toronto Humane Society spokesman Lee Oliver said, “Police said Tre didn’t do anything wrong and that it is his right to use handcuffs (as an investigator). The OSPCA then said his suspension was because Tre didn’t file (incident) papers on time.”

Despite the controversy, Smith did recently receive an award for saving Cyrus’ live from the International Positive Dog Training Association. For Cyrus, he has fully recovered from the incident, and he has moved in with a foster family who is asking for temporary custody. Since Cyrus is evidence in criminal proceedings, he cannot be legally adopted. But for now, he is enjoying his time with the family, getting three walks a day, and playing with his toys.

[Source: Itchmo.com]

06 November 2007

National Animal Shelter Appreciation Week

This week is National Animal Shelter Appreciation Week. The Humane Society of the United States launched this week in 1996 to celebrate and promote animal shelters and increase public awareness of animal welfare issues and shelter services.

The Jefferson County Dog Shelter in New York sponsored an open house adoption event in celebration of National Animal Shelter Appreciation week and had a record breaking adoption day. The shelter has not had an open spot for an animal for six months. Workers at the shelter were surprised at the amazing results from the open house.

“I was so ecstatic. I got up at 7 a.m. this morning and got out there at 7:30 a.m.,” Jefferson County Dog Shelter Supervisor Todd Cummings said. “There was someone waiting here in line, believe it or not, waiting for a dog. By 10 o’clock there was about 35 people waiting in line to get into the building.” 15 dogs were adopted in the first two hours, and many more were adopted throughout the day. Last year, only seven dogs were adopted in total. Cumming said that some dogs have been waiting for homes since May and they finally have found a loving home after their long wait.

Here are some ways that you can show your appreciation for your local animal shelter:
* Adopt or foster an animal.
* Donate a pet bed.
* Volunteer.
* Say thank you or send a thank you note!

[Source: Itchmo.com]

Doctor Saves Dogs Across the Globe

Dr. Anteneh Roba, a Houston trauma care doctor, not only rescues humans, but he saves the lives of dogs also. Roba, who was born in Ethiopia, saves “cave dogs” in Ethiopia that would otherwise die.

The Gido Washa cave in Ethiopia has been used as a place to abandon unwanted dogs. Each month, many dogs have died in the cave until July when the Homeless Protection Society stepped in to save the last four dogs in the cave. But no one wanted to adopt the four rescued dogs, who had been named Haley, Tommy, Maria, and Hannah. Roba, who funded the rescue, then paid to bring the four dogs to Houston to look for new homes.

Roba wants to bring awareness to animal welfare, both in the U.S. and globally. He said, “That’s what I’m doing - that’s my responsibility. Someone has to take care of the animals. They have no voice. We’re their voice.”

The cave has since been sealed, and Roba is trying to raise money for the Homeless Animal Protection Society to spay and neuter the animals of Ethiopia. Haley, Tommy, Maria and Hannah have been put up for adoption. In the meantime, these four are the newest guests at a luxury pet hotel in the Houston area.

[Source: Itchmo.com]

05 November 2007

Pet Cancer Awareness Month

November is Pet Cancer Awareness Month, so I thought I'd give you some facts about cancer in dogs. As hard as it is to deal with or talk about the possibility of your dog having cancer, it's always best to be aware of the facts concerning canine cancer. If you have any concerns about the health of your dog, seek medical advice from your veterinarian asap.

* Dogs get cancer at the roughly the same rate as humans. Approximately 1 in 4 dogs will develop a tumor of some kind during his lifetime.

* Over half the dogs currently aged over 10 years old will die of cancer.

* Fifteen years ago there was virtually no pet oncology; now the level of dog cancer treatment is similar to human oncology. Available surgery, chemotherapy and radiation treatment is successful in treating many canine cancers.

* Early detection and effective treatment is essential to give your dog the best possible prognoses.

* Cancer treatment is expensive; seriously consider starting a pet insurance policy whilst your dog is healthy.

* On August 10th this year, an initiative was launched by the Morris Animal Foundation to eliminate cancer in the canine population in 20 years.

* Just like in humans, cancer can occur in virtually any part of your dog's body – for example the skin, gastrointestinal tract (stomach, bowels), kidney, bladder, blood, nervous system and bones. Also like in humans, each type of cancer is its own disease and will have its own treatment and prognosis.

[Source: DogTopics.com]

Diamond Encrusted MP3 Player for Dogs

JooZoo is an MP3 player for dogs that is encrusted with diamonds and 18 karat gold and is designed in a heart-shaped necklace. There is a speaker that plays automatically triggered sounds that correspond to various behaviors.

According to the company, the play system enhances your pet’s physical health and relieves stress through automatic content responding to various pet behaviors. For example, when you leave your pet at home alone or while your pet travels in a vehicle, the JooZoo encourages physical movement or increases blood flow rate by sound wave stimulation. A luxurious accessory type of remote control and the charger with sound speaker function are also included.

The downside? The device comes with a hefty price- between $1,500 and $2,000! I guess I won't be able to get my dog an MP3 player for Christmas this year. Oh well.

[Source: Itchmo.com]

02 November 2007

7 Tips for Buying a Dog House

Before you buy your dog a doghouse, take the time to consider her height/weight and the type of climate you live in. Here are 7 tips that will hopefully make buying a doghouse a little easier:

1. Wooden doghouses enhance the look of your backyard with their classic style and design, while plastic doghouses are easy to clean and virtually maintenance-free.

2. If you live in cold climates, insulated doghouses are a must. Position the doghouse so the door faces away from the wind and provide lots of soft, warm bedding to help keep your dog warm.

3. Doghouses with peaked roofs and weatherproof liners within the roof will keep your dog dry and warm during thunderstorms and showers.

4. A raised floor that is a few inches off the ground will increase airflow and keep the doghouse cooler in summer and warmer during the winter.

5. Keeping a doghouse clean on the inside will make your dog feel more comfortable and healthy. A doghouse that features a removable roof makes cleaning much easier.

6. For design harmony within your backyard, choose a style of doghouse that the wood, brick or stone exterior can be matched to the exterior of your own house.

7. Another doghouse feature that will make your dog feel more comfortable and warm is an off-center door. This prevents wind from blowing straight into the doghouse.

[Source: Dog.com]

01 November 2007

Pizza for Shelter Dogs

A Chicago pizzeria has been offering up some delicious dinners to homeless dogs at a local shelter.

Ted Lownik, a partime deliveryman at Barracco’s pizza, has been making special deliveries to the Animal Welfare League in Chicago since hearing about outbreaks of tainted pet food on the market. Instead of throwing away extra food in the garbage, Lownik has brought over 4.6 tons of beef, gravy, and pizza scraps to the shelter dogs. The Animal Welfare League was forced to destroy most of their stored food after many animals were killed by the tainted products. Now that's what I call good eating!

31 October 2007

Safety Tips for a Pet Safe Howl-O-Ween

I know you've all heard this many times before, but considering that today is Halloween, you should be extra attentive to your dog, and you can do so with these safety tips for your pet found on startribune.com. Just because Halloween is filled with tricks and treats, doesn't mean your doggie should be chowing down on those chocolate bars! Keep these tips in mind for your pet this Howl-O-Ween:

1. Chocolate is dangerous for dogs and cats. Tin foil and cellophane candy wrappers can be hazardous if swallowed.

2. Pumpkins and decorative corn can produce gastrointestinal upset or intestinal blockage if ingested.

3. Keep wires and cords from electric lights and other decorations out of reach.

4. Use caution so that pets don't knock over a candlelit pumpkin or get burned.

5. If you decide to put a costume on your pet, please do so with caution.

6. Make sure the pet's costume isn't constricting the animal's movement or hearing, or impede her ability to breathe or bark. Monitor or remove small, dangling, or easily chewed-off pieces on the costume.

7. Make sure your pet's costume does not obstruct her vision. Even the sweetest animals can get snappy when they can't see.

8. All but the most social dogs and cats should be kept in a separate room during peak trick-or-treat visiting hours. Too many strangers can be scary and stressful for pets.

9. When opening the door for trick-or-treaters, take care that your pet doesn't dart outside.

10. Always make sure your pet has proper identification of a collar with tags and/or a microchip.

Angel the Dog Saves Girl from Abduction

Angel, a nine-month-old Jack Russell terrier, showed that she definitely is an angel by being a guardian angel over a nine-year-old girl. Andres Brown, a Florida man, said Angel saved his daughter from being abducted.

Brown’s daughter took Angel outside in the yard to use the bathroom when a man decided to grab the girl. But Angel stepped in to save her. Angel attacked the man and jumped on top of him, and the girl began screaming and was able to escape. The man finally ran away.Way to go Angel!

30 October 2007

Dogs Stop Poachers

Game wardens in Kansas are using the natural hunting abilities in dogs to help catch poachers.

The wardens are training Labrador Retrievers to sniff out evidence against hunters who shoot more than their limit of game birds or illegally kill deer. The dogs complete a 400 hour course before going on the field to find stashed game, such as ducks buried in mud or deer antlers hidden in a vehicle. Dogs in the program are trained to recognize that their shift begins when the wardens buckle the working collars and harnesses on them.

The highly specialized dogs are trained to ignore their instinct to fetch and bark at the find instead, so evidence isn’t damaged. Isn't it amazing what dogs can do?

26 October 2007

James, a Stylin' Dog Clothes Horse

James is one handsome guy who knows how to work his outfits! Tim Gunn would be so proud. Here's a picture of James wearing his royal outfit, complete with a gold crown and a very stately expression.

25 October 2007

Contest Honors Dog's Story of Survival

Life didn’t start out easy for a dog named Rummy. The Siberian Husky was so severely neglected that a Houston SPCA K9 investigator removed him from his owner’s care after he was found blind, emaciated, and missing clumps of hair. He was later diagnosed with mange, heartworms, roundworms, hookworms, and whipworms.

Rummy was taken to Husky Haven, a Siberian Husky rescue organization, where he recovered from the abhorrent conditions he was found in. Today, Rummy is a trusting, lively and fearless dog with a thick coat of hair who loves people and loves to be petted. Although he’s blind, he walks without fear, and an unknowing eye would find if difficult to distinguish Rummy from a dog who can see.

Rummy’s somber, yet heartwarming story gained attention after a Husky Haven volunteer, Angie Claussen, submitted his tale of survival to Purina Pro Plan’s “Doing More for Pets” contest as part of its Rally to Rescue campaign. Contest officials were scouting for survival stories from rescue organizations in an effort to promote awareness as well as the untold stories of rescued pets and the people who help them.

Approximately 100 stories were submitted and 10 finalists were chosen. All of the finalists received a year’s supply of Pro Plan pet food and a trip to Los Angeles for the grand prize winner announcement ceremony, which took place Oct. 12, 2007. “CSI: Miami” actress Emily Proctor joined Purina officials to recognize the finalists and reveal the winner. Proctor has been involved with the contest from the beginning, and helped choose the 10 finalists.

“I’ve known these animals’ stories for the last year and to get to know them is so special,” Proctor said. “I’ve rescued animals my whole life and so they asked if I’d like to be involved. People always say, ‘Oh, is it fun being on a show and traveling around?’ But I have to say it’s the perks of the job like this that make the entire experience. I love animals so much. It’s so nice to be asked to help.”

The grand prize winner was chosen by popular vote via Purina’s Rally to Rescue website. After more than 20,000 votes, Rummy finished on top. Rummy’s win means Purina will donate $5,000 worth of Pro Plan dog food to Husky Haven. Rummy’s new owner is Husky Haven volunteer Lisa Goebel. After Rummy was named the grand prize winner, Goebel humbly expressed her gratitude, but her sunglasses couldn’t disguise the tears of joy that overcame her after the announcement.

“This contest has just done so much for our rescue group,” Goebel expressed. “Our rescue group is all volunteers. We were about to go downhill. And then this contest came about and it has brought us so much publicity. This contest essentially saved Husky Haven.”

The “Doing More for Pets” campaign is an extension of the Purina Pro Plan Rescue campaign, which is dedicated to raising funds and awareness for pet rescue nationwide. The contest kicked off the annual Pro Plan Rally Across America tour. For more info go to rallytorescue.org

24 October 2007

Constant Licking Sign of OCD in Dogs

As found on gazettes.com, dogs may have emotional or behavioral disorders that in many ways are similar to human compulsive disorders. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is characterized by behaviors that are repetitive, constant and seem to have no obvious purpose.

There are many reasons why OCD may occur in dogs. These may include anxiety, boredom, stress, conflict or fear. Often these disorders cause your dog to chew up your shoes (usually your favorite ones) or bark for hours on end. Sometimes dogs will internalize their disorder and have self-destructive behavior. In small dogs, the most common type of OCD is a compulsive chewing of the front paws and nails, while larger dogs tend to develop lick granulomas, or self-trauma resulting from excessive chewing. These lesions often become infected and in some cases may even turn cancerous.

Similar to nail biting in people, it is believed that the pain from licking and chewing releases endorphins. Endorphins are hormones that the body produces and are similar to morphine. Anyone who has ever experienced runner’s high will understand. These hormones are very addictive. Also, there is evidence that some breeds and family lines of dogs may simply be more predisposed to this behavior. Physiological causes such as genetics or localized skin infection may be to blame and should not be confused with OCD. Arthritis and joint pain can attract the dog’s attention to a particular area and allergic skin disorders can mimic OCD.

Treatment should begin with a visit to your veterinarian to rule out any possible medical problems. This usually includes a physical examination and laboratory tests including a complete blood count, urinalysis and biochemistry profile. It is extremely important to understand the difference between allergic skin conditions and OCD skin lesions. While they may look the same to you, your veterinarian should be able to tell the difference and prescribe a proper course of treatment. Chronic licking usually leads to a deep skin infection and long-term antibiotics may be needed to cure the secondary bacterial infection.

There are some things you can do on your own to help your dog that may have OCD. Walk your dog! Some breeds, for example, hunting dogs and guard dogs, were specifically designed to walk all day long. Not giving them this outlet often leads to OCD. Walking your dog reduces its arousal and anxiety level. Dogs like to sniff, hear, and explore new things on their walk. When you keep them in the house or backyard where things are the same, anxiety levels increase. Never punish a dog for exhibiting signs of stress disorder as this may increase the behavior.

With your veterinarian’s help, you can correctly diagnose and treat OCD and help your pet return to its happy normal self.

22 October 2007

London's Dog Walk of Fame

Celebrity canines will be honored with their own walk of fame in south London's Battersea Park. The walk will open on November 5 when the first six inductees will be announced from a shortlist that includes some of the biggest dog stars of the past century. Some of the frontrunners for the initial plaque are Lassie, cartoon superdog Gromit, Tintin's trusty companion Snowy, and Toto from "The Wizard of Oz." Battersea Park was chosen as the location for the walk due to its proximity to London’s best-known dog shelter, the Battersea Dogs Home.

The dog walk of fame announcement comes weeks before canine movie stars are to be recognized at the inaugural Fido Awards, billed as the canine equivalent of the Academy Awards. Among the leading contenders are five corgis who starred alongside Oscar winner Helen Mirren in "The Queen."

18 October 2007

Ellen DeGeneres to Stop Dog Pleas

Controversy has risen regarding the Tuesday airing of the "Ellen DeGeneres Show" in which a tearful DeGeneres pleaded with and begged the organization "Mutts and Moms" a non-profit dog-rescue organization that originally gave DeGeneres the dog, to return the dog back to her hair dresser and her daughters, the family that DeGeneres decided to give the dog to. Yet, all the controversy surrounding this issue has "gotten out of hand" according to DeGeneres herself.

During a Wednesday taping of "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," to be aired Thursday, DeGeneres told viewers she wouldn't speak again until the dog, Iggy, is returned to DeGeneres' hairdresser and the woman's young daughters.

After Mutts and Moms took Iggy away from the family, claiming that the talk show host had violated the adoption agreement by not informing them that she was giving the dog away, a set off of nasty emails and threats directed at the agency has emerged after DeGeneres shared the blow by blow with viewers on her show this week.

"Let me just say this, it's gotten out of hand," DeGeneres said on the segment to air Thursday. "I want nothing, nothing more than that dog returned to that family. But you don't resort to violence. So anybody out there, please stop that. Please don't threaten or do whatever."

The angry calls got so bad that Marina Batkis, co-owner of the dog rescue organization, said she had to close her business and stay home Wednesday, a day after DeGeneres broadcast a tearful, televised plea for the dog to be returned to her hairdresser and the woman's daughters. "My life is being threatened. This is horrible," a tearful Batkis said outside her home.

DeGeneres has acknowledged she erred but said her hairdresser and her family shouldn't be punished. Batkis has refused to back down. "If Ellen wants to place dogs and decide what's a good home, then she should start her own rescue group," she told "Inside Edition." "But I'm the one doing this and I know what I'm doing."

DeGeneres said several agencies had offered to provide the family another dog, even one that looked like Iggy. "And unfortunately, Ruby, the little girl, doesn't want another dog, she wants Iggy," said DeGeneres on the show to air Thursday. "It's not a toy that's broken that you can replace. It's a dog."

17 October 2007

Picture Perfect Dogs

Pictures are instant gratification. It’s no wonder most of us accumulate dozens of photo albums, crammed full of the things – and people – we love. And of course, our pets are always included in these collections of memories and have been for decades.

Photography expert Catherine Johnson has spent years collecting anonymous amateur vintage photographs and has compiled a book featuring old snapshots of man’s canine companion. Published by Phaidon Press, “DOGS” features poignant photographs dating from the turn of the 20th century to the early 1960s. The images capture the ways in which dogs have become a natural part of our lives and range from trips to the beach and candid backyard shots to posed family portraits.

In the book you can also find quotes about dogs from such figures as Robert Louis Stevenson, George Eliot, and Dwight D. Eisenhower. John Steinbeck remarked, “I am convinced that basically dogs think humans are mutts,” and Alexander Pope claimed that “Histories are more full of examples of the fidelity of dogs than of friends.”

“DOGS” is a beautiful look at the enduring love between humans and canines, a reminder that though times may change, our best friend does not. It brings forgotten vintage photographs of people and their dogs to light.

Ellen DeGeneres Apologizes for Dog Rescue Mishap

Ellen DeGeneres is under fire for giving away a dog to her hairstylist in violation of an adoption agreement with Mutts and Moms, the Pasadena, Calif., rescue organization that arranged the Sept. 20 adoption. DeGeneres said she gave away the dog, a Brussels Griffon mix named Iggy, because he didn’t get along with her cats and had too much energy, the talk show host explained during Tuesday’s broadcast of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.”

“I guess I signed a piece of paper that says if I can’t keep Iggy, it goes back to the rescue organization, which is not someone’s home, which is not a family,” said DeGeneres, who had spent $3,000 to have the dog neutered and trained to be with her cats.

“I thought I did a good thing. I tried to find a loving home for the dog because I couldn’t keep it.”

Mutts and Moms picked up the dog on Sunday when a representative who contacted DeGeneres to check on Iggy found out the dog had been given away. DeGeneres said her hairstylist’s daughters, ages 11 and 12, were heartbroken when the dog was removed from their home.

“Because I did it wrong, those people went and took that dog out of their home, and took it away from those kids,” a teary DeGeneres said. “I feel totally responsible for it and I’m so sorry. I’m begging them to give that dog back to that family. I just want the family to have their dog. It’s not their fault. It’s my fault. I shouldn’t have given the dog away. Just please give the dog back to those little girls.”

Mutts and Moms did not respond to a request for comment.

15 October 2007

Millions Dress Dogs for Halloween

As Halloween approaches, millions of families across the United States will be searching for the perfect costume for their pets. Approximately 7.4 million households plan on dressing up their dogs and cats for Halloween, according to a survey by the National Retail Federation.

“Many consumers who own pets think of them as family members,” said NRF President and CEO Tracy Mullin. “Pet owners will go all out to include dogs, cats and other critters in Halloween festivities, including trick-or-treating, handing out candy, or even celebrating at a friend or family member’s house.”

The survey revealed the top 15 costumes for pets, which include:
1. Devil
2. Pumpkin
3. Witch
4. Princess
5. Angel
6. Pirate
7. Hot Dog
8. Bat
9. Black Cat
10. Clown
11. Athlete
12. Bumble Bee
13. Ghost
14. Bowtie/fancy collar/bandana
15. Superhero

Will you be dressing up your pet for Halloween this year?