Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Happy Dog at the Beach

What a way for a dog to spend the day. I love the beach!

Woof! Woof!

Firefighter Tries to Save Dog

An off-duty firefighter who performed mouth-to-snout resuscitation on a terrier poodle is being heralded as a hero.Steve Quick spent about five minutes doing CPR on Diana Bolger's dog, Brandy, after it was struck by a car at the corner of Park Avenue and Billard Avenue in Mount Pearl Thursday afternoon.

The animal wasn't breathing and didn't have heartbeat, but by blowing through its nose, the firefighter revived it.

His efforts gave enough Bolger a chance to spend a few minutes with Brandy before the dog succumbed to its injuries en route to the nearby Sunrise Animal Hospital."I was fascinated, overwhelmed. I think (Quick) is a hero," says Bolger. "I thank him with all my heart and soul that he is such a compassionate human being that he would help out an animal."

When contacted, Quick lived up to his surname, promptly dismissing the praise."Oh God, I don't want to be called a hero," says the member of the St. John's Regional Fire Department."That's a bit much. I'd never pass by an animal in distress like that."

Quick says he is simply an animal lover

That's one modest human. Anyone who tries to save a dog's life is a hero in my eyes. You need fast thinking to do CPR on a dog. It is quite sad that Brandy didn't make it.

Woof! Woof!

Great Dane Puppy Pic

Nice nose.

Woof! Woof!

Tiny Tiny Therapy Dog

Tiny Dancer was barking up the wrong tree last year. The diminutive Chihuahua came close to grabbing a Guinness World Record as the world's smallest dog, but other pooches turned out to be even smaller than the 5-inch-tall Lake County, Fla., pup.

Now, Dancer's owner has embarked on another quest: to have the teensy fellow named the world's smallest therapy dog. Dancer recently spent weeks in training to learn how to help hospital patients and others in need of some cheer.

Jenny Gomes of Okahumpka, Fla., said last month that several therapy-dog certification agencies turned Tiny Dancer down because of his size. But the little guy overcame defeat, tried, tried again, and finally received the paperwork.

I could eat that little guy for breakfast. But I won't, he's a working therapy dog now - all 12 ounces of him.

Woof! Woof!

Guide Dog Honored

One of Australian Customs' most successful drug detector dogs, Utah, has been recognised for his outstanding service.

In his seven-and-a-half years working with Customs, Utah was responsible for detecting more than 150 kilograms of illicit drugs including cocaine, heroin and MDMA.

At Parliament House in Canberra today, Minister for Home Affairs Bob Debus presented Utah with his award, calling him the $27 million dog.

"The largest haul of drugs that he ever detected was something like 400,000 ecstasy pills, which were worth on the market $27 million," the minister said.

Mr Debus said Utah is possibly the most successful detector dog bred by the Customs Dog Detector Program, which helps protect Australia from prohibited imports such as drugs, firearms and explosives.

In 1993, Customs began a pilot breeding program using labradors purchased from the Guide Dog Association of Australia and leading breeders. The program is now the only source of Customs detector dogs.

Utah will be spending his retirement living with his handler Yencie Fogden in Yass.

Good work guys!

Woof! Woof!

California Residents Hope for a Dog Park

Many dog owners are chasing the idea of a dog park or having designated hours in Cupertino parks where their pets would be allowed to run free. They say they're frustrated at having to drive 10 to 15 minutes to the nearest dog park in a neighboring city.

"It's so silly to have to put your dog in a car for 15 minutes just to get them out and be able to run leash-free," said Betsy Dougherty, a dog owner and Cupertino resident.
Owners say a dog park in Cupertino would benefit more than the dogs.

"I've met a lot of people that I would never have met if I didn't have a dog," Lisa Geifer said. "It promotes a tremendous sense of community."

Geifer, a Cupertino planning commissioner, and other residents near Linda Vista Park, created Cupertino Doggie Mamas. The group has met up for brunch and dog-dates at the beach.
A dog park, Geifer said, would also benefit people with disabilities and elderly dog owners who are unable to take their dogs on long walks.

"They would be able to take their dogs to an off-leash area and sit on a park bench, all while being in compliance with the law," she said.

A group of dog owners, including Doughery and Mike Hsu, had begun meeting early mornings with their dogs at a Cupertino park before they were informed by Santa Clara County's division of animal control that having their dogs off leash was a misdemeanor.

Dog parks are great things. It gives dogs socialization while their owners get socialized too! I hope these guys can find a way to make it happen.

Woof! Woof!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Dog Owners Be on the Watch for Snakes

It's rattlesnake time in the backcountry, when rattlers start stirring from winter dormancy and looking for food.

The chance that your pet dog or hunting dog stumbles onto one of these critters is real. Veterinarian bills can run into the thousands of dollars when a dog is bitten by a rattlesnake. There's a chance a dog won't die from a bite, but the pain and suffering will be hard on the dog, and vet bills could be a financial hardship for any dog owner.

But there's a way to keep dog's out of harm's way.

Tracy Jenson-Presson at High On Kennels in Mesa Grande, about 12 miles from Santa Ysabel, offers snake-avoidance classes for all dogs.

If you live in an area with a high snake population, please read this article. Snake bites kill people!

Woof! Woof!

Dogs Going Green

It doesn't take long for a human trend to envelop pets.

If people are eating organic food, wearing environmentally friendly clothes and sleeping on holistic beds, many American pet owners want the same for their furry friends.
The green trend has been evolving for several years but took off after the massive recall of tainted pet food last year.

"The lifestyles of the animals are starting to parallel the lifestyles of the humans," said Sam Blackford, owner of Sam's Downtown Feed & Pet Supply in San Jose. "We've seen a big increase in customer demand for holistic food or pet food with human grade ingredients."

Pet stores now sell hemp toys, English rubber toys labeled Earth-friendly and a line of Planet Dog products labeled as non-toxic and recyclable.

"What we're seeing now is all natural pet bedding for some of the smaller pets, completely organic and biodegradable bedding for hamsters and gerbils," said Michelle Friedman, spokeswoman for PetSmart's more than 1,000 pet stores.

"The most offbeat are the meals that are refrigerated" for dogs, she said. "We have a line called Deli Fresh that is kept refrigerated. It looks like your Mom's stew that she used to cook at home."

With a lucrative $43.4 billion pet industry market and more than 71 million U.S. households that have at least one pet, the green trend is expected to be huge.

We've been trying for world peace for the longest time, so I guess it's about time we dogs got onboard to end global warming too. Recycled toys and earth friendly packaging will give us a leg up.

Woof! Woof!

Iditarod Update

RUBY, Alaska (AP) — The jostling at the front of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race continued Friday with defending champion Lance Mackey regaining the lead during the run to this scenic village on the Yukon River.

The Fairbanks musher was the first to leave the race's halfway point, the Cripple checkpoint, late Thursday. He took off nearly two-and-a-half hours ahead of Hans Gatt of Whitehorse, Yukon, on the 112-mile leg to Ruby.

The first musher into Ruby is feted by the community with a bounty of food — a seven-course meal — and $5,000 in $1 bills.

Other mushers en route to Ruby were four-time winner Jeff King of Denali Park; the race's only five-time winner, Rick Swenson of Two Rivers; Kjetil Backen of Norway; Aaron Burmeister of Nome; and 2004 champion Mitch Seavey of Seward.

On Thursday, DeeDee Jonrowe was flabbergasted — and a few thousand dollars richer — when she beat Paul Gebhardt to the halfway mark at Cripple.

"No, no, isn't Paul here?" the popular veteran musher from Willow asked race volunteers as she arrived at the tent checkpoint at 6:22 a.m. Thursday, followed eight minutes later by Gebhardt, last year's runner-up. For being the first to the official halfway point, the 54-year-old won $3,000 in gold nuggets.

Jonrowe had passed a musher going the wrong way. But she never expected it to be the 50-year-old Gebhardt, who left the previous checkpoint nearly six hours before her. He was obviously lost, wasting crucial time in the 1,100-mile race. In 2006, Gebhardt's sled slammed into a tree and he temporarily lost his dog team, but went on to finish third in the race.

What a race!

Woof! Woof!

Spotlight: The Dog Whisperer

Chatting over breakfast at the Townsend Hotel in Birmingham recently with Cesar Millan, acclaimed dog trainer and star of the National Geographic Channel's Emmy-nominated "Dog Whisperer," something unexpected is becoming quite clear: The guy is a major shopper.

He's wearing a pretty blue cashmere sweater and a new Louis Vuitton scarf and a new and very cute camel-colored Burberry toggle coat he bought on sale for $400 during a trip to Philadelphia because it was such a good deal. He looks at a reporter's shoes and tells her that his wife has a similar pair -- only hers are Prada -- and that he picks out most of his wife's clothes because she isn't such a good shopper. But we digress.

Millan, 38, is in town on this snowy day because, as a popular player on the speaker circuit, he's signed on to give a motivational speech to the Ad Craft Club of Detroit. While he's here, he's agreed to chat with us about whatever we want, including whether he, in deference to his pack of dogs, abstains from eating hot dogs. Puzzled by our question, he says: "They don't know we call them hot dogs."

As founder of the Dog Psychology Center, a rehabilitation facility in south central Los Angeles for troubled dogs, Millan is famous for turning the most problematic pooch into a good citizen -- which means one who doesn't bite or pull at the leash or misbehave. Dogs, he says, are pack animals who need a pack leader. Once an owner decides to be leader of the pack, the dog will become what Millan calls "calm-submissive" and well-behaved.

Hey, I like this guy. He helps a lot of people learn to live amicably with their dogs and that's a good thing. Also, if I were still into chewing stuff, a blue cashmere sweater sounds nice. It's probably soft and a little chewy. As for the hot dogs, we do know what they're called but we also know that they're not actually made from real dogs.

Woof! Woof!