Posts Tagged ‘Dogs’

Detectives on pets’ tails

June 23, 2008

Here were the facts:

Subject had fled in panic two days earlier. Unresponsive to repeated calls. Known to fear men – and Styrofoam packing peanuts.

No question, it was a case for Laura Totis and her trusty sidekick, Chewy, she of the neon sense of smell. If these pros couldn’t solve this case, maybe no one could.

Pet detective and German shepherd pulled into a Reisterstown cul-de-sac at the back end of dusk. There stood Namha Corbin, frowning owner of the missing subject, one freshly shorn Wheaten terrier named Biscuit. And waiting with Corbin was the guilt-racked dog-sitting friend on whose watch Biscuit had disappeared.

Click here for the full article.

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Puppy born without front legs now uses model airplane wheels to get around

June 23, 2008

This tiny puppy may have been born without front legs but there’s no way that is holding her back.

Hope, the appropriately named two-legged Maltese puppy gets around by using a specially-designed device which features wheels from a model aeroplane.

The energetic pup uses her hind legs to boost her body forward onto her chest and operate the wheeled prosthetic limbs.

Click here for the full article.

Nanny saves child from coyote’s jaws, and other strange stories of human, animal conflicts

June 23, 2008

Seattle isn’t the only city with aggressive animals. Strange stories from across the country have accumulated over the past few years to paint a vivid picture of the growing conflict between humans and urban wildlife.

  • In April, a hawk in Boston’s Fenway Park swooped on a teenage girl and scratched her scalp with his talons, causing her to bleed.
  • A Florida woman was walking her dog in March when a bobcat approached, grabbed the pet in his mouth and retreated to the nearby woods. The woman has not seen her dog, a Maltese named Bogie, since.
  • In November in Clintonville, Ohio, a deer stabbed a dog with his antlers in at least five places on the dog’s side, chest and face. The dog, a Doberman, suffered a ruptured diaphragm and stomach, but survived.
  • Click here for the full article.

    Harvey the trampolining dog found

    June 23, 2008

    A dog named Harvey who used a trampoline to escape over a garden fence has been reunited with his owners.

    The black and white Staffordshire Bull Terrier pulled off the stunt to bound to freedom at noon on Friday.

    But after this week’s publicity, his owner Laura Kidson, 27, received a call from the RSPCA on Tuesday night to say Harvey had been handed in to them at the weekend.

    He has now been reunited with Miss Kidson, her four year old daughter Chloe and nine month old son Cole, who had been pining for him, at their home in York.

    Click here for the full article.

    DNA Study Unlocks Mystery To Diverse Traits In Dogs

    June 23, 2008

    What makes a pointer point, a sheep dog herd, and a retriever retrieve? Why do Yorkshire terriers live longer than Great Danes? And how can a tiny Chihuahua possibly be related to a Great Dane?

    Dogs vary in size, shape, color, coat length and behavior more than any other animal and until now, this variance has largely been unexplained. Now, scientists have developed a method to identify the genetic basis for this diversity that may have far-reaching benefits for dogs and their owners.

    In the cover story of tomorrow’s edition of the science journal Genetics, research reveals locations in a dog’s DNA that contain genes that scientists believe contribute to differences in body and skull shape, weight, fur color and length — and possibly even behavior, trainability and longevity.

    Click here for the full article.

    Deadly Diseases You Can Catch From Your Pet

    June 19, 2008

    Pets can serve as wonderful companions – and owning one certainly has many physical and mental health benefits.

    However, with the summer months upon us, it is likely your pets will be spending more time outdoors, leaving them prone to zoonotic diseases – diseases that can be transmitted from animals to humans.

    A Corpus Christi, Texas, man and his daughter spent weeks in the hospital because of a diseased cockatiel bought from a PetSmart store, according to a lawsuit filed Tuesday by the man’s family.

    Joe De La Garza, 63, later died of psittacosis, KRIS 6 News reported.

    “There have been over 250 zoonotic diseases identified,” said Dr. Roger Mahr, past president of the American Veterinary Medical Association. “There is a particular focus on household pets. They are definitely an area of concern. More than 60 percent of U.S. households have pets and the value of that companionship has been recognized.”

    Click here for the full article.

    Pets Can Improve Your Health and Aid in Recovery

    June 19, 2008

    There is now evidence showing that domestic animals not only provide great companionship, but they can also help prevent illness. A recent study conducted by the University of Minnesota has highlighted the importance of regular contact with pets. The study showed that having a cat for a pet can reduce your risk of heart attack or stroke by just under 50 percent.

    The study included 4,500 adults between the ages of 30 and 75 years. The study participants were followed for 10 years. The conclusion was that cat owners had a 40 percent lower risk of a fatal heart attack.

    Click here for the full article.

    Bionic spine gives Chris Evans’s dog a pain-free future

    June 19, 2008

    When vets told Chris Evans his beloved dog should be ‘written off’ after losing the feeling in its hind legs, the radio DJ refused to give up hope.

    Enzo the German Shepherd had two herniated discs in his spine, leaving him paralysed and in pain.

    His 42-year-old owner made sure he received the latest treatment  –  and now Enzo has a bionic spine.

    Click here for the full article.

    Humans Likely Making Chimps Sick

    June 17, 2008

    Humans are likely the source of a virus that is making chimps sick in Africa, new research suggests.

    After studying chimpanzees in Tanzania for the past year, Virginia Tech researcher Taranjit Kaur and her team have obtained data from molecular, microscopic and epidemiological investigations that demonstrate how the chimpanzees living there at Mahale Mountains National Park have been suffering from a respiratory disease that is likely caused by a variant of a human paramyxovirus.

    Paramyxovirus causes various human diseases including mumps and measles. The virus also can cause distemper in dogs and seals, cetacean morbillivirus in dolphins and porpoises, Newcastle disease virus in birds and rinderpest virus in cattle.

    Click here for the full article.

    Ape Applicant Vies for Star on Walk of Fame

    June 17, 2008

    Three stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame have gone to the dogs, so why can’t Cheeta the chimp get some love? The animal actor, whose credits include the 1967 comedy “Dr. Doolittle” and the “Tarzan” movies, is trying for the seventh time to get a sidewalk star and become the first monkey to get the honor. His handlers have launched an online petition to get supporters to urge the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce to give him a star in 2009.

    Each June, the Walk of Fame Committee picks from hundreds of nominations a list of inductees for the next year.

    Cheeta’s “inclusion on the Hollywood Walk of Fame will not only give recognition to one of the international, animal megastars of all time, but focus attention on his fellow primates in the wilds of Africa who now face extinction,” the petition reads.

    Click here for the full article.

    Puppy-throwing Marine is removed from Corps

    June 16, 2008

    A U.S. Marine videotaped throwing a puppy over a cliff while on patrol in Iraq has been kicked out of the Corps, and a second Marine involved has been disciplined, according to a statement released by the Marines.

    Lance Cpl. David Motari, based in Hawaii with the 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, is being “processed for separation” and received non-judicial punishment, officials said in the statement Wednesday night. The Marine Corps would not specify what that punishment was because of privacy regulations.

    The statement said Motari received the punishment for his role in the “episode which generated international attention.”

    The incident appeared on the Internet web site YouTube in March, sparking outrage from animal rights groups around the world.

    In the video, Motari is seen throwing the dog off a cliff as it yelps.

    Click here for the full article.

    Help scaredy cats (and dogs) cope with fireworks this summer

    June 12, 2008

    Shawn O’Dierno’s rescued Doberman was a certified therapy dog who could help soothe patients and tolerated the sounds of dropped hospital equipment, loud arguments or crying visitors. But while Reid coped with the stress of a hospital room, he couldn’t handle fireworks.

    “We were staying at a place by a beach where the fireworks were going on,” said O’Dierno, of Portland, Ore. “He went nuts and hid behind chairs.”

    The situation repeated itself at other celebrations until O’Dierno realized her dog had a fireworks phobia: “His eyes would pop open, and you could see the fear when the fireworks go off.”

    Experts haven’t figured out why some pets are extremely sensitive to fireworks, but some believe the smell of gunpowder may add to jitters caused by loud explosions.

    Click here for the full article.

    Dogs vs. Robots! What to do?

    June 12, 2008

    To keep the peace at home, Keith Hearn had to scold his new robotic vacuum cleaner.

    The trouble started when Mr. Hearn first turned on his Roomba automatic cleaner. When the device started scooting around the floor, Mr. Hearn’s dog, Argos, attacked it.

    Seeking help, Mr. Hearn found an online forum dedicated to the hundred-dollar Roomba buzzing with similar stories of pet assailants. Owners were offering advice. Among the most popular: Chastise the vacuum in front of the dog.

    And so, with Argos looking on, Mr. Hearn shook his finger at his gadget and sternly called it “a bad Roomba.” Argos appeared to be mollified. “After that, he never tried nipping at it again,” says Mr. Hearn, a software engineer in San Carlos, Calif.

    Click here for the full article.

    Pets are baby boomers too–with medical bills to match

    June 8, 2008

    Better preventative care, medicine, vitamins and food are making pets live longer, but leading to one costly side effect: higher medical bills, the Washington Post reports.

    Think of them as baby boomers on four legs. They’re older and fatter–just like the country at large. About 44% of the country’s dogs are older than 6, compared with 32% in 1987, according to the Post. And 45% of U.S. pets are overweight or obese, according to the Assn. for Pet Obesity Prevention.

    But also like humans, they are racking up larger medical bills. According to the American Veterinary Medical Assn., spending on veterinary medicine doubled to $24.5 million in the last decade, the Post reports.

    So pet owners are now opting for expensive surgeries and preventative procedures–such as with the dog above, who was getting hip replacement surgery–when in the past a vet would resort to euthanasia.

    Click here for the full article.

    Demand spikes at pet food pantries as downturn hurts pets

    June 4, 2008

    Diana Bardsley wiped tears from her eyes as she recalled taking food off her plate to feed her spaniel Hunter and two Siamese cats.

    Her greatest fear: that she could be forced to surrender the animals as she struggled to stretch her food stamps and Social Security income to meet the cost of living.

    Some hope was restored after she visited a food pantry, which has started offering free pet food.

    “I know a lot of people will probably say, well, if you don’t have enough money to be able to feed your animals, that you shouldn’t have pets,” said Bardsley, 53. But “just because financially you may go downhill a little or a lot doesn’t necessarily mean you have to give up the part of your family that you love.”

    Click here for the full article.

    Earthquake pets: To save or not to save?

    May 30, 2008

    […]In the Sichuan earthquake, pets were not just the objects of rescue.

    In a few cases, they were the heroes who saved people.

    The story of Wang Youqiong, a 61-year-old caught in a landslide in the mountains, is a case in point.

    After her lower body was stuck under giant rocks, she survived on raindrops and the help of two dogs for eight days.

    They licked her face clean to provide her with much needed moisture on her parched lips.

    They also barked vigorously whenever they sensed human movement nearby.

    Eventually they were able to attract rescuers.[…]

    Click here for the full article.

    Keep your pets’ whistles wet

    May 29, 2008

    With forecasters predicting a hot summer (despite winter insisting on making curtain calls this year), keeping your pet well-watered is going to be, as important than ever.

    And that goes for whether you’re at home, or taking your pet for a walk.

    “Dogs, especially in the summer, will play past the point of exhaustion and they get into the danger of being dehydrated,” says Robert Church, owner of Petland Market Mall. “You want to make sure you’re always paying attention and not overworking your dogs.”

    Click here for the full article.

    Humane Society forced to enthanize animals to combat disease

    May 28, 2008

    The Humane Society of Hall County was forced to euthanize most of the animals in its shelter Thursday in order to control an outbreak of respiratory disease.

    Humane society president Rick Aiken said the illness was a contagious but typically non-fatal virus similar to kennel cough, or bordatella. Ironically, the society recently received a grant to vaccinate incoming animals against bordatella.

    “Unfortunately, if an animal comes in and is already incubating the virus, the vaccine doesn’t do any good,” Aiken said. “And as a full-service shelter, we can’t turn animals away. We have to take everything that comes in.”

    Even though the illness is not fatal, and the society provided free treatment for any adopted pet who became ill, Aiken said some owners were upset about adopting an animal that turned out to be sick.

    “We had to make a decision,” he said. “Three or four days ago, we started isolating new animals that came in, and only one person could take care of them. Then, all the animals that had not been isolated would be euthanized.”

    Click here for the full article.

    Vets install pacemaker in search-and-rescue dog

    May 26, 2008

    After years of helping authorities look for murder victims and survivors of natural disasters, a search-and-rescue dog named Molly has been rescued herself.

    Surgeons at the University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine on Thursday installed a pacemaker in the 5-year-old chocolate Labrador retriever’s heart. She needed the surgery after being diagnosed with a complete electrical heart blockage.

    Owners Allen and Alicia Brown of Saginaw were overwhelmed with offers to help pay the more than $2,500 in surgery, vet and travel costs after The Joplin Globe reported on Molly’s need for the pacemaker.

    Medical technology company Medtronic Inc. donated the device, and a Kansas businessman offered to anonymously pay up to $2,000 of the cost.

    “It surprises me greatly,” Allen Brown said. “There’s just been such an outpouring of public support for her.”

    Click here for the full article.

    When pets occupy a spiritual space

    May 22, 2008

    Anyone who has ever cared for a pet dog, neighbourhood cow, kitchen cat or horse at the riding club will verify French writer Anatole France’s statement that “Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened”.

    The emotional bond between humans and animals is easily accepted. With its uncomplicated nature and unconditional love, an animal can expand the boundaries of the human heart. But are animals also deeply connected to the human soul? Like many philosophical systems, Hinduism gives animals prime of place.

    One of its chief gods is elephant-headed and another is a monkey. Shiva and Vishnu have several animal incarnations. Anthropologically, animals were useful to humans; they were likely given the status of gods to impress their importance upon the general people. Moreover, since all creatures are considered manifestations of the same paramatma, animals necessarily gain a position of equality with human beings.

    Click here for the full article.