Trivia ->Scientists have recently discovered that dogs can smell autism in children. ->The dachshund is classified as a hound, but is really a true terrier. The confusion stems from a mistranslation of the word ‘hund’, German for ‘dog.’ Literally dachshund means badger dog. ->The name of the dog on the Cracker Jack box is “Bingo” ->Americans spend more than $5.4 billion dollars on their pets each year. ->Due to their large, mobile ears, a dog can locate sound in 6/100th of a second. ->Seizure Alert dogs can warn their owners of an upcoming seizure attack up to an hour before it occurs. ->Americans spend four times more on dog food than on baby food. ->Pekingese is one of the oldest breeds of dogs, having lived in China for over 2000 years. Pekingese were sacred dogs, the punishment for stealing a peke was death. ->Therobromine is the ingredient in chocolate that is lethal to dogs. In large amounts it is even lethal to humans. As a rule, the darker the chocolate the more dangerous it is. ->Humans and dogs share 80 to 90% of their genetic code. Almost 60% of the genetic diseases in humans correspond to genetic diseases in dogs.
->in ancient Egypt when a cat died it was customary for a person to shave their eyebrows as a sign of mourning. When a dog died, they shaved their entire bodies.
->October is Adopt-a-Dog month.
->During their first year of life, children in homes with dogs are less likely to develop allergies than children in homes without dogs.
->During the first 18 weeks of life a puppy needs to come in contact with 100 different people and dogs to be properly socialised.
->An estimated 1 million dogs in the United States have been named the primary beneficiary in their owner’s will.
->Contrary to popular belief, dogs do not sweat by salivating. They sweat through the pads of their feet.
->Dogs can hear sounds that are too faint for us to hear, and also can hear noises at a much higher frequency than we can. Their hearing is so good that they probably rely more on sound than on sight to navigate their world.
->It has been established that people who own pets live longer, have less stress, and have fewer heart attacks.
Heroes In 1993, Weela, an American Pit Bull Terrier, saved the lives of 30 people, 29 dogs, 13 horses and a cat. Heavy, January rains caused the Tiajuana River to flood, trapping a family of ranchers, the Watkins. For six hours, Weela and the Watkins fought the elements to cross the flooded river, reach the ranch and save the family’s 12 dogs. Over the month, Weela crossed the flooded river to bring food (placed in a backpack strapped across her back) to seventeen dogs and one cat stranded on an island. The dogs and cats were rescued on Valentines day. During one of Weelas trips back from bringing food to the dogs and cats, she stumbled on a group of thirty people attempting to cross the flood waters. Weela, barking and running, refused to let the people cross where they wanted. Rather, she herded the people to an area where the water was more shallow and calmer. There they were able to cross safely to the other side.
A different flood stranded 13 horses on a large manure pile. Weela led a rescue team to the horses, and the rescuers were able to bring the horses to dry land.
The Ultimate American Pit Bull Terrier.Jacqueline O’Neal.
In 1989, Reona, a 109 pound Rottweiler left her house, jumped over three fences entered another house and rescued a 5 year old epileptic girl named Vivien Cooper during an earthquake. The dog pushed Vivien against some kitchen cabinets and held her there until the earthquake had passed.
1989 Kenn-L Ration Dog Hero of the Year.
Topper, a Belgian Tervuren, worked at both the Oklahoma City boming site and Ground Zero at the World Trade Center after 9/11. He was awarded the American Kennel Club Award for Canine Excellence (ACE) in 2002.
2002 ACE Award Winner
Salty, a Yellow Lab guide dog, was with his owner Omar Rivera, who is employed by the Port Authority. They were on the 71 floor of the World Trade Center when the first plane struck. Rivera, knowing there was no chance for him, dropped the leash so that Salty would have a chance to escape the carnage. However, Salty refused to leave his side. With Salty on one side and his supervisor, Donna Enright, on the other, the trio made it down all 71 flights of stairs. Despite the glass and debris swirling underfoot in the ankle high water. In spite of the commotion and smoke and noise, the three made it to safety. Salty never hesitated, but stayed by his owners side through it all.
2003 Dickens Award Winner
How to Keep your Dog Safe on a Hot Summer Day
->If you have to leave your dog outside, make sure she has plenty of shade, plenty of water and a spill proof water bowl.
->NEVER LEAVE A DOG UNATTENDED IN A PARKED CAR. Even with an open window temperatures can reach 140f. In those temperatures heat stroke can set in very quickly.
->Walk your dog in the early morning or late evening.
->Brachycephalic (pug-nosed) breeds can not cool off as efficiently as regular dogs. Be sure to keep them indoors with the air conditioning.
->If you need to cool off a dog quickly, wet a paper towel with cool (not cold) water and place it on the dogs paws. This will bring his body temperature back down to safe levels.
How to Keep your Dog Safe in the Winter
->Make sure he has plenty of fresh water. A dog is at as much risk for dehydration in the winter as in the summer.
->Make sure he is getting enough calories to help him deal with the cold. He needs the extra energy to keep his body temperature normal.
->Make sure he is well groomed. Matted fur will not provide as much insulation as a well groomed coat. Make sure that the fur around his feet is trimmed so as not to collect snow.
->Keep him dry, warm and away from drafts.
->Don’t leave a dog unattended outside for long periods of time. Dogs are as likely to get frostbite as humans are.
->Keep your dog off frozen ponds, rivers, etc. Dogs have fallen through the ice and drowned. People have also drowned attempting to save their dogs.
->Don’t leave your dog unattended in a car with the engine running. Dogs can asphyxiate if the carbon monoxide from the cars engine gets trapped inside.
->Keep him away from Anti-freeze. Anti-freeze is lethal, and most have a sweet taste.
How to Keep your Dog Safe at Halloween
Halloween is a fun holiday for kids and adults alike, but for your dogs, it can sometimes be a time of stress. Here are some tips for keeping your dog relaxed and safe during the holiday.
Dogs are known for their sense of smell, not their vision. Halloween costumes can be confusing to a dog, they do not know what it is they are seeing. Additionally, a constantly ringing doorbell, noisy children and other such commotion can scare your pet. If your dog seems to be having trouble, keep him in a separate, more quiet room. (Not his crate.)
Keep decorations (and their wires and cords) out of reach of chewing puppies.
If you must dress up your dog; make sure his vision, breathing, and movement are not constricted. If your dog appears to stressed out by the costume then you should remove it. Never leave a dog unsupervised in his costume.
Take measures to ensure that your dog does not dart outside while you are greeting trick-or-treaters.
Candy is not healthy for dogs and chocolate can be deadly, keep the candy out of reach. Signs of chocolate toxicity include nervousness, tremors, increased heart rate, vomiting, diarrhea, and in severe cases seizures and death. The darker the chocolate, the more toxic it is. Xylitol, an artificial sweetener has been linked to health problems in dogs. For those who prefer healthy treats; raisins can also be toxic to dogs. Candy wrappers and lollipop sticks can pose a choking hazard.
If you take your dog trick-or-treating with your kids, keep him on a short leash and out of traffic.
If your dog is a kennel dog, bring him in for the entire night. He may get spooked by the noise and mayhem and run off or dig out. He may also be the victim of a cruel prank. He will be much safer inside for the night. This is doubly true if you also happen to have a black cat. Bring little fluffy indoors for the night.
Make sure that your pets are wearing clearly visible ID tags with current information.
Keep lighted candles and jack-o-lanterns away from all animals.
If you witness or suspect acts of cruelty to animals on Halloween (or any other night of the year), alert your local authorities.
Keeping your dog safe on Thanksgiving
Nix on the table scraps. If you must feed your dog people food at Thanksgiving, put the food in his bowl so as not to encourage begging. Ensure that the food has not been seasoned and don’t give him any food that may be harmful.
Give a dog a bone. Poultry bones can present a choking hazard, keep Fido away from the table and garbage so he has less chance of getting into dangerous foods.
Teetotaler. Make sure that Boomer does not get into any holiday punch. Alcoholic beverages in excess amounts can lead to coma and death. Don’t set alcohol within reach of your dog.
Keep your pup pooped. Take a vigorous walk or have a lively play session so your dog stays relaxed and happy while every one is gathered around. Over anxious, or rambunctious dogs can get underfoot and create a hazard for themselves and your guests. The best behaved dogs are those that get their mental and physical needs met.
Doggy Hotels. If you must travel, make the necessary arrangements so that your dog gets the care they need during your absence.
What’s cooking? Keep your dog out of the kitchen, stuffing can contain poisonous ingredients for your dog, yeast from uncooked bread can rise in your dogs stomach and chocolate and sugar -free candy (xylitol) can be deadly.
Don’t Dine and Dash. Check that Lassie’s ID tag is on her collar and the information is current. Should she escape at anytime during the hubbub, Dog Tags will make it more likely that you will be reunited.
Fears and Phobias
As previously mentioned, dogs have many of the same emotions as humans. This can be great when a dog is in a happy, seeking state of mind, but not so good when the dog is scared. Being afraid, and having a phobia are two different things.
Fear, though unpleasant, can be beneficial. It can cause one to be more mindful of danger and less likely to take careless risks. When a dog sees a stimulus that causes fear; she may begin panting, run, or if there is no escape route, become aggressive, her heart rate will increase and she will salivate more. Once the stimulus is removed, the dog is no longer fearful.
Phobias, on the other hand, are often irrational and extreme. So extreme, in fact, that the dog’s daily activities may be disrupted. He may not eat properly or even sleep. In the worst cases it can cause the afflicted to act without out reason and meet with some harm, in the case of a panicked dog meeting traffic, for example.
Fear, left unchecked, may develop into a phobia over time.
Here are some of the more common fears and phobias that dogs have and how to manage them.
Dogs who suffer from separation anxiety are reacting to the social attachment system which is related to the panic system in the brain. Dogs who experience separation anxiety are actually suffering from physical pain. Signs that your dog may suffer from this can include destruction, vocalization, elimination (particularly in the shoes or on the bed), and an obsessive need to be out. This can include scratches around windows and doors.
Remember that elimination can be a potty training issue, so don’t assume that a dog who has an accident in the house has separation anxiety. It could just be an accident. Location often matters, soiling ones shoes or bed are far more indicative of separation anxiety than soiling on the stairs. Destructive behaviours and vocalization can just as often be caused by boredom. Sufficient exercise is key for a healthy dog. Puzzle toys and rotating his toys can be very helpful in occupying a dogs mind while you are gone.
Separation anxiety is often over-diagnosed, but an estimated one in six dogs suffers from it. If you suspect your dog may suffer from separation anxiety, seek out a reputable behaviourist and a vet.
Some places to start treating separation anxiety is to desensitize your dog to your coming and going. When you return from the end of the day it is important that you ignore your dog until you get settled. Overly emotive displays of affection upon your arrival signal to the dog that you were in danger while you were gone. If your dog thinks that every time he sees you will be the last time he sees you, that can cause no small amount of stress for your dog. Be matter of fact when you leave and you return, this will tell your dog that you are safe, you know what your doing and that when you leave you’re probably going to come back.
You can also practice leaving. Randomly throughout the day, put on your shoes, a jacket, grab your purse, take your car keys and leave the house. After a few seconds, come back inside. Repeat this exercise, with varying lengths of time. Sometimes grab your car keys, walk to the door, but don’t leave. This will keep Fido guessing about your departure while simultaneously reminding him that when you leave, you will also, eventually, return.
You can supplement this by occasionally giving Rex a treat when you pick up your purse, briefcase or car keys. Let him see that good things happen when you perform these actions. Some dogs benefit with the addition of a dog door. Some dogs benefit from being crated, for some dogs, crating will worsen the condition. It all depends on the individual dog.
Separation anxiety can be a lifelong battle, but it can be successfully managed. Relapses are common, but treatable. Behaviour modification can be treated with or without the use of drugs. Talk to your behaviourist or veterinarian about appropriate therapy, guidance and medication.
Vacuum Cleaners, Blenders, Lawnmowers and other big scary appliances.
Vacuum cleaners make loud noises and move erratically. Some dogs may try to hide from them, some dogs may try to herd them, some dogs may try to attack them, and I’ve even heard of the odd dog attempting to ride one! If little Bailey is afraid of the vacuum cleaner, try counter conditioning. When the dog is in the room, bring out the vacuum. Do not turn it on, leave it in the middle of the floor. When Bailey approaches, click and treat. Do not rush her, fears can only be overcome at the comfort level of those afraid. Once Bailey is comfortable being around the device when it is off, remove her from the room and turn the vacuum cleaner on, but do not use it. When she approaches, click and treat until she is used to the vacuum being on. The third and final step is to remove her from the room, turn the vacuum on and move it around. As she approaches, click and treat. This may take several sessions.
If your dog is afraid of the blender or other small appliances, run them until Rover gets used to the noise. Reward curious behaviour and refrain from punishing fearful behaviour as this will make the fear much worse. For health reasons, sometimes substitute food, toys or bones for treats.
If your dog is afraid of the lawnmower, get him used to the sound of it using the methods stated above. However, for safety reasons, always keep the dog away from a moving lawn mower. Place him inside, or tied up elsewhere when ever you mow.
Thunder and Fireworks
Some dogs habituate quite nicely to storms, some dogs fear it only while indoors and some dogs react in panic no matter where they are or how distant the storm. Dogs can sense an approaching storm due to changes in atmospheric pressure. Dogs may hide, pant, vocalize, tremble, pace, act destructively or even run away. Some of these reactions can be far more dangerous than others.
You may be able to help your dog by creating a safe environment like a crate, or an area under a bed. Some den like area where your dog feels safe and secure. This area should always be accessible to Max, even when you are away. When you are home, you can try masking the noise by playing loud music, particularly music with a loud bass track, or watching a loud, action packed movie. This will help cover the noise and, at the very least, make it more uniform. If you have a white noise machine, that may also help.
Some people are able to redirect their dog’s attention by playing a game, exercising or performing a vigorous training session. This will not only get your dog’s focus on something fun but provide positive association with the thunder or fireworks.
In extreme conditions, it may be necessary to treat this problem medically with anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) medication. Consult your vet if you feel your dog’s phobia is a threat to him.
Fear of people and other dogs
Some dogs fear people and or other dogs because they were not properly socialised. It is beneficial for a dog to come in contact with 100 different people and dogs before they are four and a half months old. Here’s the catch: at that age they are very vulnerable to disease, so when ever possible carry them everywhere and don’t let them walk near another dog’s feces.
Some dogs fear people and other dogs because they have been attacked by a person or another dog. The solution is the same.
If a dog is exhibiting fear of another person or dog, he may tremble, pant, try to escape, vocalise, he may exhibit piloerection (fur on end) and he may stiffen. Never correct a dog for showing these signs. Punishing a dog for growling only teaches a dog that growling is bad. The next time he comes across an object he fears: another dog, adult or even a child, he will not growl, he may go straight for the bite. A growl is good. A growl is a dog verbally telling someone to “back off” The last thing you want to do is take away a dogs warning system.
If a dog fears a person or dog from 20 feet away, stand with your dog 25 feet away, well within his comfort zone. When he sees the stimulus, click and treat. When he is comfortable with dogs or people from 20 feet away, stand 15 feet away and click and treat. The trick is to reward the dog before he has a chance to react, not after. Timing is crucial. We do not want to teach a dog that fearing people is good. When he is accepting people or dogs from a distance of 15 feet take him 10 feet away and then click and treat.
When he is accepting people from 10 feet away, take him 5 feet away and have a friend or a friendly stranger toss the dog a treat. When he is accepting treats from a friend from 5 feet away, have your friend squat down and hold out a treat from the flat palm of his hand. Make sure that the friend remains absolutely still and refrains from making eye contact with your dog. Your dog may perceive this as a threat.
Have as many people as possible try this until your dog realizes that people are beneficial.
If it is other dogs your dog fears; give him treats 10, then 5 feet away. If your dog can reliably sit, when he is accepting treats from a distance of 5 feet consistently, move him next to a dog, place him in a sit and then click and treat.
Try this repeatedly until your dog realizes that dogs are beneficial. For any set back (and set backs are common during training) start over at the very beginning.
A special word on Thundershirts
Thunder shirts are anti-anxiety wraps designed by trainer Susan Sharpe after reading about a deep pressure squeeze machine invented by Temple Grandin. Sharpe designed a jacket style wrap made to apply pressure to the dog’s body. There has been much success with these, and similar style devices. However, you can not leave these on too long. After 20 minutes the effect wears off and you have to take it off and reapply. For separation anxiety, this would be ineffective as you are not there to remove the wrap. For short term anxiety; car rides, thunder, large gatherings, and in cases you may be uncomfortable treating medically, this wrap may be a great benefit to your dog.
Most jobs for dogs became obsolete years ago, but dogs still need mental and physical activity in order to thrive. Listed are some sports and activities you can enter your dog in. Look some of these up in your area.
Agility: This is an obstacle course for your dog to run. It provides your dog with both structure, exercise and it’s a great opportunity for you and your dog to bond.
Flyball: Is a relay competition sport where your dog runs and jumps over hurdles to retrieve a ball. The first team to finish is the winner.
Disc Dog: Competitions. Some of these dogs can do some amazing things catching frisbees with their handlers.
Dock Diving: Is great for retrievers and poodles. Your dog jumps off a dock into the water. Distance is the scoring factor here.
Hunting and Field Trials: are a great chance for your dog to use his natural instincts while exercising his body.
Earth Dog Trials: are great for terriers. These competitions also provide a natural outlet for a dog to go to ground and is great for exercising and bonding.
Skijoring combines dog sledding with skiing.
Obedience Trials: Want to prove that your dog is just flat out better than everyone else’s dog? Just enter him in an obedience competition.
Stock Dog Trials: Have a Border Collie in the city? This activity is great for herding breeds to show off their talents.
The Lighter Side
Two women, Beth and Paige are arguing over who’s dog is smarter.
Beth says to Paige, “My dog is so smart. Every morning he fetches the morning paper.”
Three men are out walking their dogs on a hot summer day, when they come across this Pub. It’s hot out and the men are thirsty. The first man turns to his friends and says, “I have an idea, we’ll tell them we’re blind and these are our seeing -eye dogs.”
His friends think this is a good idea so they decide to go in one at a time so as not to arouse suspicion.
The first man enters the pub with his German Shepherd by his side.
“Hey buddy” says the barkeep “You can’t bring your dog in here!”
“I’m blind, sir” answers the first man “And this is my seeing -eye dog”
The bartender obliges and the man walks in and orders a pint.
Ten minutes later, the second man enters with his lab.
“No dogs allowed, pal” says the bartender. The second man explains that he is blind, and this dog is his guide dog, so the bartender allows him entry.
Fifteen minutes later, the third man enters the bar. “We don’t allow dogs in the bar.” The barkeep tells him.
“But sir,” replies the third man “I’m blind and this is my seeing-eye dog.”
“A pekingese?” Asks the bartender, incredulous.
The third man, not missing a beat, asks “This is a pekingese!?!!”
Young Johnny is playing the violin in his bedroom. He is quite new to the instrument and it squeaks badly. His father is in the living room with the family dog, trying to read the paper despite the noise. Eventually, the squeaking becomes so bad, that the dog begins to howl. The commotion continues for quite some time.
After awhile, the din gets so bad that the father yells up to his son. “For crying out loud. Johnny! Can’t you play anything the dog doesn’t know!”