Monday, January 28, 2013

Too Good Not To Share

Every so often I come across a photo that I cannot resist.


It says it all!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Loyal Dog

A loyal dog whose owner died late last year has apparently been showing up for Mass every day for the last two months at the church where the funeral was held.

Tommy at Santa Maria Assunta church (Nikonarte Fotografia/Daily Mail

Tommy, a 7-year-old German shepherd, used to accompany his owner, Maria Margherita Lochi, to services at Santa Maria Assunta church in San Donaci, Italy and was allowed to sit at her feet.

After Maria died, according to the "Daily Mail", the dog joined mourners at her funeral service and followed after Maria's coffin as it was carried into the church.

Tommy has been showing up at the church when the bell rings out to mark the beginning of services ever since.

"He's there every time I celebrate mass and is very well behaved," Father Donato Panna told the "Daily Mail". "He doesn't make a sound."

None of the other parishioners has complained, Panna said, and villagers give the dog food and water and allow him to sleep nearby writes the "Daily Mail".

"I've not heard one bark from him in all the time he has been coming in," Panna added. "He waits patiently by the side of the altar and just sits there quietly. I didn't have the heart to throw him out—I've just recently lost my own dog, so I leave him there until Mass finishes and then I let him out."

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Yellow Dog

Many dogs behave “badly” when approached by humans or other dogs while on a leash. But it is not necessarily because they are “mean” dogs, nor even due to one thing! It is not just dogs that are timid or aggressive which have issues on walks. Some dogs are old or have health issues such as hearing loss which make them wary of strangers. Whatever is causing your dog’s difficulty with walk time, it is hard to communicate that information quickly and politely to others. That is where the Yellow Dog Project comes in.

The Yellow Dog Project is an initiative to help inform people about dogs who for any reason should not be approached while they are on the leash. Is your dog in training, and trying to focus? Is your dog afraid of children? Do you just not want to be interrupted on your daily walks? How do you let people know, in a polite way, that you prefer they stay away? It is simple: you tie a yellow ribbon to the leash of your pet while you are walking them. People can see this signal from a distance and know at a glance not to approach your pooch.

This fantastic idea has helped many animals and people feel more confident and safe while out in their communities. It can help many more too! Do you know a doggy who needs a little space? Share the news with their owners! Spread the word that a yellow ribbon means "give me space!"

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Chew This!

Brushing your dog's teeth can be a challenge. Why not let your dog clean its own teeth?

Sounds to good to be true? Check this out....

With the Hugs Chew Core Plague Removing Toy, your dog can actually play his way to better dental health. Because with every bite of this apple, the soft rubber tines will massage your dog’s gums and remove dangerous plaque from his teeth.

The Hugs Chew Core toy is doggie-tested and veterinarian-approved to satisfy a dog’s instinctive desire to chew.

The key benefits include:

* Durable, soft rubber tines remove plaque
* Gently massages gums and strengthens jaws
* Safely satisfies a dog’s desire to chew
* Recommended for dogs 25 lbs. and up

Now your dog can have fun and
fight dental disease at the same time.

I am getting one for my dog!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Winter Blues and Dogs

After the joyous glow of the holiday season ends, many of us wait for some hopeful sign of spring through the gray months of January, February, and March.

Some people get the winter blues while waiting for warmer temperatures and sunny skies to return. Others get seriously depressed to the point where daily activities are difficult to perform. If these feelings are deep enough, the condition is called "seasonal affective disorder" or "SAD."

SAD is a disorder different from "the blahs," those moments when we feel generally down. Although not fully understood, SAD is thought to be caused by a lack of bright light affecting hormonal balances. Affected people may have bouts of unexplained crying, desire for sweets, excessive fatigue, lethargy, depression, anxiety, and mood swings.

Do our dogs suffer from the SAD? Probably not. While they do get depressed, dogs are not known to suffer from SAD. More likely, your dog is mirroring your own feelings, explains Dr. Nick Dodman, professor and the Director of the Behavior Clinic at Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine.

For instance, some of the search and rescue dogs at the World Trade Center site got depressed because they picked up on the feelings of their human handlers, who were faced with a tragedy of unimaginable proportions.

The dogs were also at risk for depression because they were eager to succeed. They were trained to find survivors, and failure to do so was upsetting. To combat the sense of failure, human handlers "hid" so the dogs could "find" them. This boosted the dogs' confidence and self-esteem.

Dogs do have a hormonal response to the change in seasons. For instance, they shed their coats in spring and fall. But Dodman says it is a stretch to say that dogs experience the winter blues themselves.

Dogs do seem to be prone to cabin fever, like people. And even worse for them, they are not as entertained as us by watching old reruns or rented movies. But they do like exercise, which is the best tonic for winter blues for people and pets.

Dogs also are known to grieve the loss of companions, human or animal. Grieving dogs may show the clinical signs of depression or separation anxiety.

The clinical signs of depression include the following symptoms:

Lack of energy and interest
Absence of play
Loss of appetite
Reduced social interactions
Increased daytime sleeping
Nighttime restlessness
Weight loss or weight gain

It is very important to note that ill dogs or dogs that have ingested poison will often appear depressed. If you see your dog suffering from the above symptoms, have him checked out by a veterinarian to rule out any physical cause.

But if your dog just seems a little down or sad, consider how you have been feeling. Because dogs are so attuned to our emotions and body language, it is likely they pick up on our feelings and act accordingly, notes Dodman. Not knowing what is amiss, dogs may become anxious and clingy, especially if they are closely bonded with their owners.

So if you see your dog acting a little out of sorts, maybe you have both been cooped up inside a little too long. If weather permits, go outside for a healthy run or some play. Aerobic exercise is the best thing you can do to boost you both out of winter's doldrums.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Doggie Resolutions

Happy New Year!

In addition to your own New Year's resolutions, your dog might have a few of his own. The American Kennel Club® (AKC), the dog's champion, reflects on some resolutions your dog might be thinking of for the coming year.

Top 10 Resolutions by Dogs include:

10. Owner on floor, dog in bed.

9. Stop begging and actually get a seat at the dinner table.

8. Give up the dream of ever catching my tail.

7. Bark like a big dog but still get cuddled on lap like a little dog.

6. Get back at cat for litter box incident.

5. Find every bone I ever buried.

4. No more haircuts!

3. Become alpha dog in my house. Well, at least stop letting the cat push me around

2. Invent goggles that allow me to see the electric fence.

1. Finally pass that darn AKC Canine Good Citizen test.

Hope this made you smile.