ANIMAL RADIO® Network Newsletter | June 2007
Programming with a Purpose
In this issue:
Diamond Pet Foods announced that it has recalled Nutra Nuggets Lamb Meal and Rice Formula dry dog food in 40 lb. bags.
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DAY CARE - WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW - Arden Moore is back!
AMERICAN IDOL's RANDY JACKSON - Randy and his cat "Dawg" on Animal Radio®.
HOW DO I HELP MY GRIEVING CAT? - The loss of an animal can affect other pets.
IS IT A POODLE OR A LAMB? - Japanese Lamb-scam. Hoax? Maybe not.
END URINE BURNS - HGTV's Rebecca Kolls passes down a generation old trick.
PLAYING FAVORITES - Guilty because you have a favorite pet among many?
SUMMER POISONS - Is spraying my fruit tree bad for the birds?
PRODUCT REVIEW VitaPaw BOOK REVIEW The Magic of Cranes.
"Animals, that's what I want to devote my life to now," Emmylou Harris told Animal Radio®. The angel-voiced singer has been wowing audiences for decades, and as one of music's leading vocalists, has earned 12 Grammy Awards. She joins us for week-two of the Summer Season of Stars.
The Man Who Listens to Horses, Monty Roberts, is an award-winning trainer of championship horses, best-selling author, Hollywood stunt man, foster dad to 47 (in addition to three of his own). He's back and sharing more secrets on Animal Radio®.
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Pet Food Added to Recall List
Star-Studded Summer on Animal Radio®
Jamie Farr once worked on a chinchilla ranch in
between jobs. He spills the scoop on other celebs' odd jobs before
they got that big break. LISTEN
Legendary Singer Emmylou
"Now I am at a place where I want to focus much more on helping [animals] and ensuring humane treatment," she said. "That's what my passion is about these days: ending their suffering and educating people about animal issues."
"Animals can teach us how to be better human beings," Harris theorized. "They've certainly taught me that."
She offered examples of how pets help sick patients in hospitals, reform prisoners and teens in detention centers, act as service guides to the blind and handicapped, bring smiles to the elderly in nursing homes, and alert people to epileptic seizures and illnesses such as cancer.
It seems only natural that Harris would be so concerned about animals. Her father, she said, was training to be a veterinarian at the University of Virginia when World War II began. He abandoned his veterinary studies to join the armed forces, get married, and start a family. Harris was raised near Quantico, Virginia, where her father was stationed for more than a decade. Later, she started her music career in Washington, D.C.
In her adult years, one of Harris' closest canine companions was Bonaparte, a poodle mix who traveled with her on tour and lived to age 15. She also inherited another dog, Radar, 13 years ago when her daughter left for college. The Cairn terrier is now both "blind and deaf, but still an incredible friend."
These days, the musician hangs out with her "road dog" Keeta, who was displaced by a hurricane in 2005 but now travels comfortably on tour.
Harris also operates her own
fostering operation, which she calls Bonaparte's Retreat and
can be seen at her web site: www.emmylou.net . She has turned part of
her yard into a small shelter, complete with runs and doghouses
for up to three pooches at a time. Currently, her foster dogs
are close to or more than 50 pounds and in need of permanent
families all their own. She noted that she always tries to help
out those dogs who seem to be the hardest to place-those who
are older, have been relinquished more than once, or have been
available for adoption for a while.
If you go looking for Monty Roberts, you won't find him lounging in his favorite chair high up in the hills overlooking his horse-training farm in the beautiful Santa Ynez Valley. Monty is more likely to be found somewhere on the globe continuing to spread his message of nonviolence. You're more likely to find him speaking to incarcerated youth in a juvenile detention facility, gentling his 15,000th horse at a demonstration, teaching his techniques to the growing number of students at his Equestrian Academy in Solvang, California or advising executives at Fortune 500 companies.
If you are looking for adventure,
you and your horse can join Monty on a Horse Ride Adventure from
June 27th through July 1st at the Clearwater Lodge. The lodge
also has rental horses available for gusts who aren't able to
bring a horse. And if you don't wish to ride, there is fishing,
river rafting, golfing and antique shopping. For more information,
contact Pat Roberts at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 805-688-4382
"I love cats, and I've always admired Morris the Cat, who himself was a shelter cat," said Randy Jackson. "Morris and I have both adopted cats to kick off this incredible rescue effort. Morris, of course, selected the mirror image of his younger self and named his new buddy Li'l Mo!"
Following Morris' example, Randy adopted a cuddly kitten of his own from a Los Angeles shelter, and he promptly named the cute little guy "Dawg."
Randy Jackson, a Grammy Award winning producer, is a twenty-year music industry veteran. He started out at the age of 13 playing bass and got his big break when he joined the band Journey. As a musician and producer he also spent eight years, as the V.P. of A&R at Columbia Records followed by four years as Senior V.P. of A&R at MCA Records. Jackson recently completed his fifth season as one of the judges on FOX's hit television show "American Idol" which once again garnered record breaking ratings.
Randy Jackson as part of Animal Radio's Summer Season of Stars
RECENT Animal Radio® PODCASTS:
When planning your summer garden, keep in mind a garden appropriate for your pets. So many times people complain that their dogs ruin their yard and gardens. A good hint is to watch your dog when he is in your yard. Dogs usually have a path that they follow around the yard - so, don't plant anything in their path. And if your dog digs, provide a special place for your dog. Get a kiddy pool and fill it with sand. You can even hide treats in it to encourage your dog to dig there. If you have cats that constantly come in your yard, plant some catnip. They will be attracted to that one area and leave the rest of your garden alone.
Do you have yellow spots in your yard from your dog? Try feeding him tomatoes or tomato juice. The acid in the tomatoes has a tendency to break down the urine, which in turn won't yellow your lawn.
And if you have slugs, remember they are hermaphrodites, which means they do not need a partner to multiply. If you have one slug, you will probably have 400 or more by the end of the season. Beer has been used frequently in keeping them away, and Heineken is their beer of choice.
There are organic products
you can use on your lawn that won't harm your pets such as a
product containing corn gluten. And, since you can't be sure
what your neighbors have put on their lawns, after walking your
dog remember to wash his paws.
Designing for Dogs
Although Designed to Sell mainly deals with people fixing up their homes in preparation of selling, Lisa has been asked to help design pet friendly houses. She knows what types of fabric and flooring work best with Fido & Fluffy, and helped design a kitchen for her brother's two Rottweilers the secret is Travertine floors!
Lisa mentions that while Clive seems pretty tame on the show, behind the scenes it's a different story - he is such a goofball! Designed to Sell is gearing up to film their 100th episode in just a few weeks. You can catch them Monday through Friday at 8 pm EST/PT.
For tips on updating your property, for your own enjoyment if selling isn't in your immediate plans, check out the book, Designed to Sell: Make any home the hottest property on the block with expert advice from the popular HGTV series, available everywhere books are sold.
Lisa currently resides in Los
Angeles where she shares custody of her two Yorkies with her
Here are the facts as of this newsletter.
More than 5,500 pet-food products, house brands and name brands alike, are now on the FDA's recall list. The first recall was the largest, of more than 60 million containers of "cuts and gravy" canned or pouched food that turned out to have wheat gluten tainted with melamine, which is used in the manufacture of plastic countertops, cleaning agents, glue and fertilizer. Those products were all made by Menu Foods, under almost 100 different brand names.
Subsequent recalls have included dry foods, and foods containing rice protein concentrate. More recalls are expected as these companies voluntarily pull products. (Note on the human food chain: "Salvage" pet food was fed to hogs and chickens in several states, and the same targeted ingredients as have gone into pet food is also used in the manufacture of food for human consumption. It has yet to be determined by the FDA and USDA if any such product or food animals contaminated with such products has been eaten by anyone.)
Important: Check your pet foods against these lists, and then check again. Changes and adjustments are seen on the lists on a frequent basis.
If you have a pet who has eaten any of the recalled foods -- even if there are no symptoms -- call your veterinarian. As we've said before, you'll be buying yourself peace of mind, and maybe saving your pet's life. If your pet is sick -- vomiting, increased thirst, increase or lack of urination, lethargy, bad breath, diarrhea or lack of appetite -- you have an emergency situation, and your pet needs a veterinarian now.
If you want to be sure that your pet is eating the right food, check with your veterinarian. He or she will know the current status of your pet's health and their history, and will be better able to point you in the right direction of the proper foods for your pet.
Autographed Dog Collars
With the generation donation of 100 collars from Bamboo, Kyle has his collars and is in the process of contacting celebrities for their autograph. The collars will then be auctioned off to benefit the Canine Companions for Independence. When asked why he chose this charity, Kyle says he is a big animal lover and likes how these animals have been trained to assist their humans and wants to help.
Traveling with Pets Doesn't
Have to Drive You Crazy
According to a survey of pet owners by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA), more than 53% of dog and cats will travel with their owners. With the upcoming busy travel season, what are the best ways of traveling with your best friend?
Of the 4 major travel choices that Americans have, pets are not allowed to travel on half of them. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (www.avma.org), pets are prohibited from traveling by bus or train in most states. That means that our friends will either be flying the friendly skies or rolling down Route 66 with us during our time away from home. In both cases, there are many simple things that pet owners can do to insure their pet's comfort and safety during the trip.
It has been said that "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure". For pet owners preparing to travel by plane or car, a few ounces of preparation and time will prevent future heartaches and frustrations on the trip. First, make sure that your pet has proper identification on him or her at all times. This can be something as simple as an ID tag on his collar, but a more permanent solution would be the use of an implantable microchip. Next, make sure you have copies of vaccination records and needed medications easily accessible during the trip. You might even ask your family veterinarian for a recommendation of an emergency hospital near your destination. And finally, do your homework. Some airlines and travel sites may require a health certificate for your pet. This document must be dated within 10 days of the start of your travels.
For pets who will be flying with their owners, good communication with the airlines is a must. In all cases, your four legged friend needs to be over 8 weeks old and weaned for at least 5 days. Most airlines will require the above mentioned health certificate and all recommend arriving at the airport early to insure the smooth check-in of your pet. Kennels that will be checked into the cargo area must be non-collapsible, large enough to allow the pet to stand and have a leak-proof bottom covered with absorbent material. Be sure to check the weather at home and at your destination. Some specific breeds and individual pets may not do well, especially during the warmer temperatures of summer. Airlines may refuse to transport pets if the temperature exceeds 85 degrees in the cargo hold or is less than 45 degrees anywhere along the itinerary. American Airlines, for example, requires a veterinarian's statement that the pet is acclimated to cold weather if the temperature drops below 45 degrees.
Many owners are very worried about the safety of their pets in flight and during boarding procedures. According to the website, www.dryfur.com the majority of accidents and injuries that happen to pets are the result of poor quality carriers or kennels that are missing pieces. Again, a few moments of preparation by the owner can avoid a loss or death of their pet. And for those owners who have contemplated sedation for their pets, the answer is a resounding NO! The AVMA, and the American Humane Association both agree empathically that sedation during flight is a risk pet owners should not take.
Traveling by car may be less complex than air travel, but due to the longer time frames, owners need to plan rest stops and exercise times for their animal companions. The AVMA recommends that you keep a jug of fresh water in the car to avoid times when reliable water sources may not be available. Pets will travel better with small amounts of food and water in their system frequently rather than allowing the pet to eat his or her normal ration. Cats should be kept in carriers or cages during travel to avoid potential accidents if the pet gets "underfoot" of the driver.
When you reach your destination, be sure that you are aware of pet-friendly hotels and campsites in the area. Also, veterinary and animal experts recommend owners to be "considerate" and have a kennel or crate available. There are many sites online that can help you find lodging that allow pets. At www.petswelcome.com, over 25,000 hotels and other locations that allow pets are listed. For owners who will be camping with their dogs, veterinarians recommend the application of a topical flea and tick preventative to help avoid bringing home any unwanted guests.
Just like their owners, many pets are individuals and won't accept the changes that travel brings to their lives. For these pets, having the name of a good local boarding kennel or reliable pet sitter is probably a smarter idea. Online resources include the American Boarding Kennel Association (www.abka.com) and the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (www.petsitters.org). As always, your family veterinarian likely has information about local facilities that he or she trusts with the care of your pet.
So, as the busy travel season
gets underway, remember that many problems and potential injuries
can easily be avoided with a little bit of preparation and homework.
Be sure and talk with your veterinarian about your pet's special
travel needs and what he or she recommends for traveling. To
learn more about vacationing with the four-legged family members,
and watch an informative video.
Do I Help My Grieving Cat?
Dear Grief Stricken,
I am so sorry to hear about Burrito and your loss. I know that all of the readers of this column empathize with your grief. Most of us have lost an animal companion that we've adored. Please take some comfort in knowing that you provided a loving wonderful home for Chiquita. It doesn't get much better then that.
The loss of an animal we've shared our life with can be very traumatic for us and the other animal companions in the household. Refocusing both Burrito and you on other activities will help you get through the grief. Regular activities will also help to bond Burrito more to you and will stimulate his mind. Environmental enrichment is also important to help Burrito transition out of the trauma from the loss of his best friend. Additionally, it's important for you to try to genuinely bolster your mood. I know that is going to be hard, but it's important for Burrito's recovery since animals are very good with picking up on our moods.
It is essential that Burrito eat and keep up his strength. Since his appetite isn't what it should be, entice him with his favorite treats. If he refuses to eat, and isn't restricted in his diet, try different foods such as chicken baby food that don't contain any onion or garlic. If he does not eat for 24 hours, or appears to be listless for an extended period of time, please take him to the vet.
Try to keep the same schedule with Burrito that you had before Chiquita passed. Since cats aren't very good with change, it is very important to keep everything as consistent as possible. Since the loss of Chiquita is a major change for Burrito, schedule regular times for feeding, grooming, play, clicker training, bed time, etc.
If Burrito likes to be groomed, use a soft brush and combine the grooming sessions with gentle massages and petting. Since the grooming session should be a positive and relaxing experience, don't pull at his fur to untangle a knot. Do your best to have the grooming session every day at the same time. Let Burrito decide the length of time for the sessions. He may decide he's had enough after ten seconds or 30 minutes. Don't force him to be groomed, remember it should be an enjoyable, relaxing activity.
Another activity that will help both you and Burrito is clicker training. Clicker training is a great way to stimulate Burrito, will give him something to focus on and bond him more to you. Clicker training shapes behavior through a reward system. It doesn't matter what you teach Burrito to do, the process and the activity is important for helping both you and Burrito through this time. It is important to keep in mind that everything you do with Burrito should be nurturing, fun and positive.
A clicker is a small rectangular box that is available at most pet stores or through Karen Pryor's site: www.clickertraining.com . When it is depressed it makes a click. "Charging the clicker" is the first step involved in clicker training. Charging the clicker means associating a treat with the clicker. It is very easy to do, is accomplished by clicking and then immediately giving Burrito a treat. This is repeated about twelve times in succession until he associates the clicker sound with a treat. Since Burrito isn't eating very much right now, use a treat that is particularly tasty to him, helping to stimulate him to eat. If the treat doesn't motivate him, try motivating him through affection. Some cats are not food motivated, but can be motivated through affection or play.
After the association is made between the clicker and a treat, use the clicker to "capture a behavior" and then reward for it. The first behavior that is recommended to capture is touching a target. Chop sticks make good targets. Hold the chopstick in front of Burrito's nose, and when he touches it, click and reward him. Immediately after he touches the target, click and then give him a treat. After Burrito understands targeting, hang a verbal cue on it. Present the target, say the word "touch", click and treat. A very good resource for learning about clicker training is a book by Karen Pryor called Clicker training for Cats. My description of clicker training is only a very basic and quick overview, read Karen's book for complete and thorough instructions on how to clicker train your cats.
Enrich Burrito's environment by hanging bird feeders outside a couple of windows. Make sure there are either cat trees or comfortable window sill extenders that Burrito can comfortably sit on to observed the birds in the feeders. When you are away from home for long periods of time, turn the TV on or play videos such as The Cat Sitter or Video Catnip for him. Also, provide him with treat balls, filling them with a treat that he loves.
I do not recommend getting a pet kitten for Burrito. Bringing a new cat into the household is always a stressful experience for both the resident cat and the new cat. Burrito is already stressed from the loss of his bonded mate, and a new kitten will only compound the stress.
Be patient and loving, with time and a little work, both you and Burrito will get through this rough time.
Marilyn Krieger, CCBC is a Certified Cat Behavior Consultant. She can be reached for phone or on-site consultations to help solve cat behavior problems either by e-mail email@example.com or by phone: 650 780 9485. Additionally, Marilyn teaches cat behavior classes and is available for speaking engagements. You can find out more about The Cat Coach at http://www.thecatcoach.com Marilyn is certified through The International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. Copyright May 2007 Marilyn Krieger.
Every Life Matters: An Opinion/Editorial Piece
Tammy S. Grimes, Founder, Dogs Deserve Better
I question a society where
those who step up to save a dying animal are arrested and prosecuted;
yet those who allow an animal to suffer and die in their very
own yards are rarely brought to justice and seldom even charged
with more than a minor infraction.
Pets 911 harnessing online
video to find homes for lost and abandoned pets
is proud to partner with Pets911! Hear about the latest Pets911
activities on-air on Animal Radio®
Maggie was down and couldn't
get up on her own for more than 10 hours recently and had to
get help from the Anchorage Fire Department. A 24-hour watch
was put in place, but was removed after she appeared to be doing
okay. Since then, she has been down twice. And as the 24-hour
watch was called off, no one knows just how long she was down
Maggie originally arrived at
the zoo in 1983 as a baby. She has been alone since 1997, when
the zoo's other elephant died. View Maggie's Video.
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Many of us have raised human children. We understand that if we do something for one child, we should do for the other. At times, the child with the "problem" draws most or all of the attention, seemingly sucking the life out of us. We seem to not have the energy to deal with the other child. This may seem normal. However, inside we all know, each child deserves unconditionally our time, love and respect.
Have you ever noticed your animal kid's behavior change because you were spending more time and energy on someone else whether this Being is human or animal? Well, our animal kid deserves unconditionally our time, love and respect just as much as anyone else. From our animal kid's perspective there are no favorites. We are always first and foremost in their lives. Every Being whether human or animal should be treated equally even though it's a hard thing to do when our human heart is pulled more toward one than another. While it may be hard, it's not impossible. There are lots of examples of where one animal kid is being treated differently than others.
My friend has 3 cats and a dog. Her youngest kitty stopped eating. Her mom asked, "What is going on?" Her kitty told her that she wanted different food and would not say why or what food it was. I talked with the kitty. The answer was that recently most of the others' food had been changed and she wanted the food everyone else was having. Each animal kid eats a different meal. Her mom caters to each one even though she tells her human family, "This is not Burger King. You can not have it your way." Every meal, each animal kid has his/her own bowl with their own special food and supplements in it. It is quite the production and definitely takes longer than pouring food from a bag into their bowls. The kitty wanted what everyone else was having. It was finally narrowed down to the fact she wanted food from The Natural Pet Pantry who makes raw food. Due to an issue she has, her food needs to puréed because she is only able to swallow liquid food. Now her mom purées the food she wanted for her. She is very happy.
One time the same friend went a way for a long weekend with two of her kitties and the dog. These 3 have health issues. The eldest kitty was left home because she thought he would be happier at home. He loves being outside in his back yard. Everyone came back and told him what a great time they had and what they saw. He did not like being left at home and missing out on their adventures. He felt that if this was going to continually happen, maybe he should get sick so he would not be left behind. His mom now takes him with the rest of family. He is delighted to be included.
As many of you know, Faith passed in January. We now have a new baby named Candie. I must say that I am very pleased to see the way people relate to both Braveheart and Candie. Very often people will see a puppy and make a fuss over the baby while essentially leaving the more mature animal out. The reason I'm very pleased is because everywhere we go, people make a fuss over both pretty equally. Perhaps this is because I made up my mind that if there was inequality of attention, I would say something so both dogs got the same attention. Very often when new animals come into a family, even the members of the family pay more attention to the new member. This is understandable because the new one needs to be taught what it is like to live in the family. The key here is to be sure you pay equal attention to the animals already in the family. In my family, that is some trick as I live with 10 animal kids. So, for some period of time, there is much more time being spent. In the end, it all works out for the best of everyone.
Whether it seems it or not our animal kids have picked us and want to be a part of our lives. They may act independent or aloof. However, if they were not included, they most likely would be disappointed. They want to participate in our lives. They like feeling special just like we do. They also like being asked and told why something is happening. For them life is all about being loved! Also, they are our greatest teachers regarding how we look at life.
So, spend the time it takes for whatever you are doing with your animal kids and it will, in the long run, take less time because you won't be trying to correct something less than perfect for you and your kids.
Until next time, I'm Joy reminding
you, you can never love your animal companions too much. You
can only love them, hopefully, enough.
Appeal Filed in Morrison
County Puppy Mill Case
- Neighbors Ask Minnesota Court of Appeals to Rule on New
Conditional Use Permit Granted to Puppy Mill
Last year, the Minnesota Court of Appeals decided that Morrison County had been arbitrary and capricious when it granted McDuffee a permit to run a 600-breeding dog facility that also allowed for an unlimited number of non-breeding animals and puppies.
Following that ruling, the County held a public hearing into the matter and re-issued the permit with 13 new conditions attached to it telling McDuffee how he is supposed to operate the facility. The conditions cover things ranging from the disposal of feces and dead animals to noise management.
But, neighbors are quick to point out that Morrison County has no system in place to ensure McDuffee compiles with these conditions. They also point to McDuffee's long history of failing to comply with USDA regulations, and his apparent failure to even meet minimal Minnesota Animal Cruelty laws.
Minnesota State Law requires that his animals be provided with a minimum of 20 minutes of free-choice exercise each day. During the public hearing in Morrison County, it was learned that McDuffee had neither the staff nor the facilities needed to provide this required exercise, in spite of the fact that he has been in operation for about a year at the new facility.
After leaning about McDuffees failure to exercise his animals, in accordance with Minnesota State law, Morrison County reduced the number of breeding animals allowed by the CUP from 600 to 500, and added a condition to his permit that McDuffee set aside one sixth of his facility to be used as an exercise area for dogs. This condition, however, does not ease the minds of people concerned about the puppy mill.
Mike Fry, Executive Director of Animal Ark asked, "If McDuffee has been so willing to ignore USDA regulations and Minnesota State cruelty statutes, what makes Morrison County Commissioners believe he will comply with their new conditions, especially when they have no way of knowing how he is operating his facility on a daily basis?"
Since granting McDuffee his new permit, Morrison County Commissioners have tried to deflect criticism of their decision. In the Morrison County Record, Commissioner Duane Johnson is quoted suggesting they had no choice but to allow McDuffee to continue to operate. He said that, because this was a land-use permit, the County could only consider land-use issues.
However, that appears to be in direct conflict with the earlier ruling by the Minnesota Court of Appeals, which, in overturning the original CUP, told the County they had failed to take a "hard look" at many issues relating to the CUP. The issues the County failed to consider, according to the Court, included animal welfare, environmental and other issues.
This case has already received national attention. This second appeal is likely to call additional attention to the County's policies toward large-scale commercial breeders. There are several puppy mills operating in Morrison County, including one owned by McDuffee's ex-wife and one owned by McDuffee's sister. Both of these facilities have histories of serious USDA violations.
During a related court case, veterinary inspections of McDuffee's property were conducted to look for potential public health concerns that could originate from large-scale dog breeding facilities. The results of those inspections have been sealed by a judge in Morrison County. It is expected that attorneys for the neighbors may try to get those inspection reports made public during this appeal.
Attorneys for Mansfield, Tanick
and Cohen law firm are handling the appeal for the neighbors,
with support from Animal Ark.
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Is it a Poodle or a Lamb? Hoax or not?
A company in Japan has been selling sheep as poodles.
A Japanese actress, Maiko Kawakami, was one of these unfortunate people who bought a sheep thinking she was getting a poodle. But, after proudly showing pictures of her "dog" she was told that it was in fact a lamb. She should have known, as her "poodle" did not bark and refused to eat dog food, and he had hooves instead of paws.
Maiko, unfortunately, is not the only one who was duped. Hundreds of woman fell for the same scam. Perhaps up to 2,000 people have been conned. Sheep are not very common in Japan, so many people had no idea what they looked like.
The Japanese police have subsequently shut down the online company that had been selling the sheep. Poodles are well known as a status symbol and they were charging up to $1,200 for these "dogs."
People who unwittingly purchased these "poodles" have since donated them to zoos and farms.
Britt Savage is a regular Animal Radio® correspondent. She can be heard daily. LISTEN TO ANIMAL RADIO NETWORK NOW
And God said to Job: "Behold the Behemoth!"
Most experts believe that the behemoth of the Hebrew Bible was not a mythological beast, but a hippopotamus. Although the name hippopotamus was not available to use until many centuries after the Book of Job was written, hippo's presence has been reported in Egypt since 1500 B.C., and he was well know in Biblical times.
The hippopotamus is widely featured in ancient Egyptian art, and hippos have even been found embalmed in the tombs of ancient Egypt. The Egyptian goddess of childbirth, Tauret, was portrayed as a regal pregnant hippo with human breasts, her head adorned with the traditional Egyptian headdress. Expectant Egyptian women wore amulets bearing the image of the hippo-goddess Tauret.
Today, hippos live in the sub-Sahara
of Africa, some in the wild, most in parks and reserves. Their
scientific name is hippopotamus amphibious which
mean "river horse that leads a double life," because
the hippo is aquatic by day and terrestrial by night. Hippos
emerge from their river homes at twilight and will sometimes
travel for many miles to graze throughout the night. A golf course
in Uganda is a favorite hangout for one "bloat" --that
is what a group of hippos are called-they mow the grass with
their munching every night, but their wide feet also leave big
ruts in the fairway. The golfers were so upset at their golf-
balls landing in hippo tracks, that club officials made a new
ground rule: if your ball lands in a hippo's footprint, you may
remove the ball and give it a drop without being penalized.
Email your events to: root@AnimalRadio.com
For more information about
Meow Madness 2007 or to view just a few of the great adoptable
animals that will be available visit www.sdhumane.org.
Off 2007 · Unchain the 50!
This Years 4th of July Event marks our 5th Annual Chain Off, and this Year we're going Even Bigger than EVER, with a Goal of at least ONE PERSON per state living chained to a Doghouse for 8-24 hours in our Fabulous "Unchain the 50" Campaign!
We need at least 50 people to join us! That's right, at least ONE from every state. Here's how we've made it easy for you...
Last year's participant, Erin Blais of Maine, BLAZED a trail for you...She lived chained to a doghouse for 24 hours IN HER VERY OWN YARD! That's right, no event to plan, location to get permission for, funds to raise...nothing. And the media STILL CAME.
Many of you have been telling us you want to do this for years, but when it came to planning the event, it proved to be too much for you. (We understand, it can be VERY daunting.) So this year, DON'T PLAN. Just get yourself a doghouse, let us know where and when you will be joining us, get a few friends to sponsor you on this hourly 'sponsor sheet' (like a walk-a-thon), and be done with it.
We will alert your local media and include your details on our website. Each person who chains her/himself for 8 hours or more will receive a FREE CHAIN OFF 2007 T-shirt, as well as brochures to hand out to any interested passers-by.
ASK "THE DOG EXPERT" - by Darlene Arden, Certified Animal Behavior Consultant
Q. Last month, the Cat Coach, Marilyn Krieger, said to ask you about litterbox training dogs. Well, I'm asking because it sure sounds like a joke to me! Can you really do that? I mean really? I have a Chihuahua and it sure would be easier not to have to walk him late at night or on cold winter days.
A. Yes, you can really litterbox train a dog. In fact, more than one company makes litterboxes and special litter (made of compressed paper) for dogs. Probably the best known is Second Nature by Purina. I certainly wouldn't want to litterbox train a Giant breed like a Newfoundland or Irish Wolfhound but for small to medium size dogs this can be an option for people who are ill and can't take their dog for a walk in inclement weather. Little dogs lose body heat much more quickly than big dogs so they'll need a coat or a sweater when going for a winter walk. And if you use a litterbox you will still need to socialize your dog. You train the dog exactly the way you would if you were going outdoors: take him to the litterbox each time and give him a special word so he'll learn to associate it with doing what he has to do in the right place, then give him a special treat and praise him lavishly. Housetraining is housetraining and you have to be consistent whether that means sleeping in clothes so you can take him outdoors in the middle of the night, or getting up in your jimmies and taking him to the litterbox. The added bonus, is for a woman alone, it is safer to be able to take a dog to a litterbox than to be vulnerable on big city streets in the middle of the night.
"Ask the Dog Expert"
is a regular column by Darlene Arden. This month's column features
information found in her book, "The Angell Memorial Animal
Hospital Book of Wellness and Preventive Care for Dogs,"
(McGraw-Hill), which helps you, in concert with your veterinarian,
design a wellness program based on your dog, your lifestyle and
the place where you live, and "Small Dogs, Big Hearts,"
(Howell Book House), and the newly released, "Rover, Get
Off Her Leg!" Further information may also be found on her
Copyright 2007 by Darlene Arden. All Rights Reserved.
Is Spraying My Fruit Trees
Bad for the Birds?
The trees in my yard are full
of new leaves, especially the fruit trees. Soon these trees will
be filled with little black worms that will destroy their yields.
Usually I spray them with pesticides, but I've become concerned
with the birds that eat at the feeders, which are next to the
trees. Is it safe to continue to spray? With what? I don't want
to lose my fruit
I'm with you Tod,
Fruit rules. Even though I'm a vegetarian, I'd much rather eat fruit. In fact, I would become a fruitarian, but that name sounds even wimpier than vegetarian. Fruit has it all over vegetables. Most fruits are sweeter than vegetables, you don't have to cook any of them and fruit makes far better desserts than vegetables. There is apple pie, blueberry cobbler, raspberry turnovers, banana bread, strawberry shortcake, just to name a few. What kind of desserts do vegetable give us? Carrot cake? Oh, please.
Whether you like fruit, vegetables or both, the trouble is we aren't the only ones who like them. Lots of other things do too and that's where the problems come in. Since the first humans decided that growing food was better than chasing after it with clubs, we have been fighting off the hordes of other creatures that mistakenly thought we like to share. Over the years everything from fire to prayer to voodoo to chemicals have been used to protect crops. All, except maybe prayer, have had clear environmental impacts. The first known chemical insecticides were made from sulfur and were used by the Sumerians back 4,500 years ago. I'm not sure who the Sumerians were, but if they used sulfur they probably came from New Jersey.
Today over a billion pounds of toxic pesticides are dumped on this country each year and the highest percentage of the dumping does not come from commercial farmers, but from homeowners. People like you and I, Tod, are doing more than our fair share spreading these poisons around. The patch of emptiness that we call a lawn are a major target, but ornamental shrubs and, yes, prized fruit trees are also sprayed, dusted and powdered with nasty stuff.
The benefits of spraying are immediate. We get a greener lawn, redder roses and spotless fruit. The long term effects on us humans aren't as obvious. How these sprays affect the people who eat the fruit or the children who play on the lawn isn't as clear. What is clear is that pesticides are bird killers. Birds are a 100 times more sensitive to pesticides than mammals. It is estimated that in the U.S. over sixty million birds die annually from pesticide exposure. The reason why we don't find that many bird bodies is that most are quickly scooped up by scavengers or fast food restaurants. Also, pesticides indirectly cause bird mortality. Insect eating birds and their nestlings may starve if spraying eliminates all the insects in an area.
Bird's mobility is part of the problem. Because they can fly it's nearly impossible to keep them away from a recently treated area. Birds die from direct contact with pesticides or from eating the insects or plants that have been sprayed. They die from absorbing toxins when they land on a treated tree or plant. The die after drinking water that is contaminated by runoff. It doesn't have to be water runoff either. Hummingbirds often obtain their moisture from sipping up the little water droplets that form on the leaves of a tree. If those leaves have been sprayed, the tiny bird is in big trouble. Based on the above information, Tod, you can probably guess that I'm giving a thumbs down to your question about spraying to protect your fruit trees. An easy alternative to spraying is to encourage more birds to your yard. Birds would love to feed those "little black worms" of yours to their nestlings, especially if the worms aren't dusted with poison. In addition to your feeders, putting out a birdbath, setting up more nest boxes and encouraging the growth of native vegetation will draw more worm-eating birds to your yard.
The other thing you should do is identify which species those little black worms are. By knowing the exact insect you are dealing with, you should be able research a specific, nontoxic way of protecting your trees. But for the sake of the birds, and perhaps even yourself, avoid using pesticides. Like that Joni Mitchell song says: "Give me spots on my apples but leave me the birds and the bees." Good luck with your fruit trees Tod. Before I go I'd like to make a deal with you. I won't tell any bird watchers that you once used pesticides if you don't tell anyone that I've been listening to Joni Mitchell. Deal?
Mike O'Connor is the owner
of the Bird Watcher's General Store on Cape Cod, which opened
in 1983 as one of the first stores in the United States dedictaed
solely to birding. His column, Ask the Bird Folks, appears weekly
in The Cape Codder, The Register, The Harwich Oracle, and The
Upper Cape Codder newspapers, and his writing was included in
the Best American Science and Nature Writing 2004. Copyright
2007 by Mike O'Connor. All Rights Reserved.
G'day from Downunder...
We all agree that one dog bite is one too many.
However here in Australia, BSL or Breed Specific Legislation, limits on the numbers of pets we are allowed, no pets allowed in many new developments all of these things along with compulsory desexing of all domestic pets are just the start of what we see as a greater subversive movement to ensure no one ever has a pet in the future!
It's easy to blame the politicians who make these laws, but the real problem are the activist groups who don't want us to have pets or 'companion animals' at all. They think ALL animals should be free and are chipping away at our right and desire to have animals as pets in our lives.
There are increasing rules with what we can and can't do with our dogs including (in the USA) restricting ownership to dogs under a certain size or weight a town in New Zealand where no dogs or cats are allowed housing developments in Melbourne Australia with much the same restrictions, Queensland & South Australia councils banning selected breeds or requiring muzzles on Border Collies! (it's true!)
But the big one right now here in Australia is thinking that dog bites can be reduced by two things:
1) Slowly killing off the biggest
dog breeds by compulsory de-sexing
Any 1st year veterinarian or
animal behaviourist can tell you dogs are more likely to be territorial
and generally more anxious if kept muzzled or locked up for any
length of time.
Then Voila the activists immediately have a reason to say that ALL dogs bite (duh!), are dangerous and therefore they should all be banned.
We MC'd and event recently here in Sydney called 'Solving The Dangerous Dogs Dilemma'. But we didn't see any dilemma... we know any dog can be dangerous but the 'dangerous dogs' that were plenty in number on the day all behaved impeccably.
Any dog can bite - just look at the close-up photo of Cosmo, our Miniature Apricot Poodle... a wonderful 'softie', except when he has bitten us (several times in the past) a few groomers, a neighbour (twice) and yes - A RANGER! (but the ranger did say afterwards they approached him the wrong way!)
Whilst it's true that some dogs have threatened, attacked and killed humans over the years - to our knowledge it has never been shown absolutely that a dog ever did this out of hate, jealousy, spite, retribution, religious or political reasons.
The same can't be said of humans.
Internationally respected animal trainer and Pet Talk Radio co-host Steve Austin summed it up a few years ago when the dangerous dog and BSL legislation was first being talked about - he said: "Bad Dogs are not born they are created by us. Let's educate the dog owners lets educate the dogs and dog bites will drop like the proverbial lead balloon"
That said, we'll be back next
month with something a little lighter... meantime, hugs for your
pets from Brian & Kaye
Do's and Don'ts of Doggy Day Care
At work, you may feel like an absentee dog parent as you wonder what your dog is doing. Is he OK? Is he happy? Worse has he turned into destruct-o dog out of boredom or separation anxiety? When you open your front door, what will await you?
Perhaps you will step in a puddle on the living room carpet, eye a shredded pillow in the bedroom or find your favorite vase in shattered pieces on the dining room floor.
Even if you discover no doggy misdeeds, you may find that what stands between you and that relaxing recliner is your raring-to-go, tail-thumping dog who is anxious to meet and greet you and unleash some energy.
Guilt overwhelms you as you tell your dog, "Sorry, buddy, not right now." When you left that morning, you promised to play fetch or take your dog on a long walk when you returned home after work, but now you're too exhausted. Your dog gives you that letdown look and delivers a long sigh. Bottom line: you're exhausted and your dog is frustrated.
Here's a win-win solution: doggy day care. Once regarded as a novelty a decade ago, it is now hailed as an essential godsend. After all, many regard themselves as pet parents rather than mere dog owners. The latest survey taken by the American Animal Hospital Association reports that nine out of 10 owners consider their dogs as family members.
Just as you would search earnestly to find a quality day care or after-school program to meet your child's needs, apply the same dogged determination for your canine especially if you are gone for more than eight hours each day.
After all, dogs are social critters who crave interaction with people and other pets. Dogs left home alone for 10 or more hours without any creature comforts or mind-stimulating toys can start to exhibit signs of loneliness incessant barking, potty messes, destructive chewing and other behavior problems.
Let me offer you these tips to assist you in selecting the right doggy day care for your canine chum:
Once you've selected a center,
here comes the final test: have your dog spend a few hours at
the daycare. When you arrive, notice how the staff interacts
with your dog. Do they exhibit genuine affection and address
him by name? Then notice your dog's behavior when you return
later in the day. Does he seem happy and relaxed or anxious and
tense? The daycare must be a place where your dog feels welcomed
by other dogs and the staff.
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