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 This Week From The Redbarn Studios

Animal Radio for June 19, 2021  

Show Your Dog Off
Chris Perondi, The Big Book of Tricks For The Best Dog Ever!

Chris Perondi with DogChris Perondi runs Stunt Dog Productions and the Stunt Dog Academy in Stockton, California with his wife, Suhey, and their team of canine performers. They perform more than 1,000 shows every year across the country.

Ladybug, the Animal Radio Stunt Dog, has learned many tricks over the years, taught by Judy Francis. However, when it comes time to perform in front of people, she just stands there, almost as if she has stage fright. This is normal according to Chris. He explains that it's all about looking for that focus and tunnel vision in your dog. You need to try to get them acclimated in an environment with a little bit of distraction at first and then slowly acclimate them to bigger distractions. You need to try and find out what really motivates them as well. To do this, he suggests using toys and treats. You might also have to ramp up the treats and give them something a little higher in value, like hot dogs.

For example, if you're having a hard time getting your dog to focus doing tricks at the park and you're doing all the training in your house, then you might go to a park type setting. At first, try your backyard and then slowly take your dog to the front yard. You want the least amount of distractions at first and then you can start adding more distractions.

There are dogs that have a little bit more level of focus than others and learn tricks more quickly. That is attributed to their prey drive. Basically what Chris does is to take that prey drive and turn it into play drive. So some dogs have more of a tunnel vision than others. Chris explains that these dogs are just focused on you and the distractions around them don't bother them at all. Then there are other dogs that get distracted by every little thing, even a butterfly flying by.

Does age play a factor in teaching your dog tricks and can you teach an old dog new tricks? Chris says that he gets asked that question frequently and says yes, absolutely! He's proven this time and time again in his shows as he travels across the country performing with his dogs. He always wants to keep them acclimated and having fun because what it's really all about is spending time with his dogs. As they get older, he teaches them new things so they can still get out there and have fun in front of an audience and really showcase how awesome these rescue dogs are. Chris explains that all his dogs are actually rescues from pounds and shelters.

 The Big Book Tricks For The Best Dog Ever Book CoverAll of Chris' dogs love each other. They get along well and he tends to spoil them a little bit too. He has a lot of fun training and traveling with them and they're well behaved. However, at the end of the day, dogs need to be dogs and just have fun and love life. All of his dogs are allowed in the house and in the bed with him and his wife. The dogs are their kids and pets for life. He tells us that half of them are on the bed sleeping with them and the other half are in their own little beds or under the bed.

There are a wide variety of dogs at Chris' home. He has a Golden Doodle, a couple of Border Collie mixes, a Jack Russell, a Cattle Jack, a Dalmatian mix, a Husky Cattle Dog, all together just a good mix of dogs.

He does have a few from the herding breed and he does say that the dogs from the herding and sporting breeds have a little bit more drive, because that's what they're bred for. So they're going to be the dogs that are going to be more toy motivated than some of the other breeds out there. It doesn't mean that they're smarter; it just means they have a more of a working ethic and background bred within them. So it does make training these dogs for those types of activities a little bit easier.

The Big Book of Tricks for the Best Dog Ever! includes 118 tricks by Chris. It is divided up into three sections for the beginner dog, the intermediate dog and the very experienced dog. Chris explains that before teaching your dog any trick, you want to make sure your dog knows the basic obedience commands.

If you have a set of tricks that you repeatedly put your dog though, they may even do the next trick before you even ask them to. Chris calls this 'show smart.' That's when they get so smart and they know that they're getting it right, so they just keep going because they know they're going to get that special reward that they love so much at the end.

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Bailey, No Ordinary Cat
Erin Merryn

Bailey and Erin's Daughter Both Dressed Like a PrincessBailey, who was no ordinary feline, catapulted to social media mega-stardom. What makes Bailey more addictive than catnip? In addition to his adorable expressions and hilarious, heartfelt antics, Bailey has a penchant for doing things that are demonstratively un-catlike. Glamour Magazine Woman of the Year, activist Bailey's human Erin Merryn waxes poetic about this incredible furry viral sensation.

So what was so unusual about Bailey? First of all, he loved to take bubble baths and actually enjoyed them. He would also often sit in a chair and be read to for hours while getting a pedicure. Bailey enjoyed doing everything from being pushed in a buggy, to dressing up in baby onesies, to sitting in a highchair and being fed cat food. Bailey would basically allow Erin's daughters to do anything to him.

From the very first time Erin met Bailey, she knew he was a unique, sweet cat. She could tell by his mannerisms and how affectionate he was and how he just let anybody do anything to him.

Erin already had two cats back home when she found Bailey at a pet store in her college town. She said this little dinky town had a little pet store. They had kittens and puppies and you could play with the kittens. She found him in the cage with his little female siblings. She pulled him out and after three hours she couldn't leave the pet store without him. She fell in love with him so quickly and immediately knew he was no ordinary cat.

At the time, Erin was in a college dorm and had to hide Bailey. This is because cats weren't allowed in the dorms. She found him in a pet store and could not walk out of that store without him.

Bailey in Bathtub With Erin's DaughtersThe relationship between Bailey and Erin's daughter was truly amazing. Erin tells us that people could not believe some of the things that she captured on camera. Bailey would let the girls lie on him and pull his ears and he would just purr away. People couldn't believe that a cat would allow this.

Erin knew then that she had to videotape Bailey dong odd things like taking a bubble bath, because if she just took a picture, people would think he ran out of the bathtub in two seconds and that he was being held or forced down. But when you watched the video, you see that Bailey sat there in the bathtub, while her daughters squirted him with bubbles and scrubbed him with the Loofa.

Bailey would also sit in a highchair wearing a bib. Erin also had to capture a video of Bailey sitting in the back of motorized pink car being driven by her daughters, just going down the driveway.

The reason Bailey was so special is that he loved the attention. In fact, according to Erin, he was obsessed with attention. Bailey had to be in constant touch with a human at all times. He constantly had to have his paw on someone and if everyone got up and left the room, he would follow them into the next room. Bailey would even follow her daughters to their beds. If you closed a door and he didn't have access to a human, he would sit there and scratch at the door until you let him in.

Bailey, No Ordinary Cat Book Cover Bailey, like all cats, was not destined to live forever. Even though he has crossed the Rainbow Bridge, his big heart and even bigger personality will continue to evoke love and laughter well beyond his years here on earth. Bailey has 154,000 Instagram followers. Erin says she has so many videos of him that she continues to share them. She states that people are constantly telling her that Bailey's postings are the highlight of their day. Erin says she has 14 years of great footage that she will continue to share with people. Once such video is "You Are My Sunshine" video with his human sister, Abby. (

Erin also authored a book, "Bailey, No Ordinary Cat," which captures who Bailey is. It's a picture book with words on the next page with captions. For example, there is a picture of Bailey wrapped up in a blanket and he will comment something like, "Will you just stop laughing at me and unwrap wrap me?" There is also a picture of Bailey in the bathtub with the girls. They've got their little kitty cat swimsuits on. The girls are not looking at the camera, but Bailey is, with the quote, "When is somebody going to tell them cats hate water?"

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Get Your Pet To the Vet Safely with No Escapees - Dr. Debbie

Dr. Debbie WhiteA frightening situation occurred the other day at my veterinary hospital. Working inside my office, I could hear a woman's shrieks coming from the parking lot. I ran outside to find a woman with one dog on a leash, and the other dog skittering about the parking lot - the result of a slipped collar. The owner would approach the panicked dog and he'd retreat, darting under nearby cars. Those familiar with our hospital location understand its proximity to a busy intersection. Should the dog run in the wrong direction, he'd meet up with 45 mph traffic.

My staff was outside in moments to assist the owner in retrieving her dog and safely escorted everyone into the building. Thankfully my client's few minutes of terror ended uneventfully. But that's not always the case. I've seen dogs run straight into the road, cat's leap from a family member's arms, and owners dive into oncoming traffic trying to catch an escaping pet.

The lesson is simple. Don't underestimate your pets' fears. Fear of car travel, new places or the veterinary office can cause a pet to behave in unpredictable ways. If you know your pet to be nervous with new people or new situations, be especially vigilant when transporting your pet in a vehicle.

Identify Your Pet
Use two methods of identification for best insurance your pet is returned to you if lost. Permanent identification with a microchip is a must and should be complimented with a collar and ID tags.

Restrain Pet in Vehicle
Keep your pet secure during travel and when the car door opens by using a doggie seatbelt. Small dogs and cats should be housed in a pet carrier which is secured with seatbelt to avoid undue carrier movement during travel. Do not allow cats and small pets to roam freely in the car. Cats have been known to take cover under car seats which may require sedation or seat removal to extract kitty from her hiding place.

Check for Proper Fit
Improper fitting harnessImproper fitting collarProper fitting collarA proper fitting collar allows 2 finger widths between the collar and pet's neck. Allow more than, and should your pet put on the brakes, he'll easily slip out of the collar. Poor fitting harnesses are just as dangerous and allow gap room which allows a back-peddling pet to wiggle out. Not sure if the collar is too loose? Snug the collar up one fitting in anticipation of your trip to the vet.

Try Other Collar Styles
Even if you don't normally use a choker or pinch collar, consider using one when going to the vet's office. For thick necked dogs with smaller head size, try the Martingale collar, a fabric and metal combo collar that snugs down should your dog try to back out. Boisterous dogs that jump and leap when on leash may benefit wearing a head collar that fits over the muzzle. Ensure your collar choice is properly fitted, since any of these styles can fail if improperly fitted or used incorrectly.

Call Ahead
If you anticipate difficulties getting your pet to the vet's office, call ahead. Veterinary staff members are on the ready to help ensure your pet's visit is a safe one.

So, take a few minutes to consider your pet's travel safety before heading out on that next car trip, whether it is to the park, groomer or veterinary office. Your four legged friend will thank you, but may pout on the way there.

Featured veterinarian known as "Dr. Debbie" on national pet radio program, Animal Radio. Ebook author of "Yorkshire Terriers: How to Be Your Dog's Best Friend"; "Pugs: How to Be Your Dog's Best Friend"; "Mini Schnauzers: How to Be Your Dog's Best Friend"; and "Shih Tzu: How to Be Your Dog's Best Friend." Dr. Debbie's books.

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Joey VillaniThe Dogfather's Grooming Tip with Joey Villani

Choosing The Right Blade To Groom Your Pet at Home
Most people see the person who cuts their hair a lot more often then their dog sees their groomer. The person cutting your hair knows what length of hair you like and what number blade to use to get the correct length. However, the problem with pet grooming kits is that those blade numbers are reversed.

For dogs, the higher the number, the shorter the cut is. The lower the number, the longer it's going to leave the coat. With humans, those numbers are completely the opposite. So a triple zero for people is equal to a 50 blade, which will leave you bald.

So if you confuse the blade numbers for people and pets, you're going to have a problem. That being said, and more importantly, is that these blades are moving objects and are metal on metal. These blades run at such a high rate of speed that they build up friction. They can then get to the point where they can be up to 180 degrees. So that means you're going to burn your pet. You can get ceramic blades, and while ceramic blades still heat up, they don't get anywhere as near as hot as your conventional metal blades.

In order to avoid the burn, you constantly have to keep feeling that clipper blade. This means that every three to four minutes you want to put it on your wrist and you want to feel it. You can even leave it running, as it's going to be very difficult to catch your skin with it. It's not going to cut you, because you're going to lay it flatly across your wrist. You can shut it off before testing it if you wanted to. It doesn't really matter.

Dog Grooming BladesAs soon as it starts getting warm, you either want to take off the blade and replace it with a replacement blade or use a cooling spray that you can cool it down with.

Just recently on social media. Joey saw someone who was grooming their pet and they left their pet with some pretty severe burns. This was due to the clipper blades heating up and they had no clue. They thought the dog just didn't like having a haircut and the dog was yelping, but they were really burning their pet.

Joey tells us that he thinks the reasons why the blade numbers are different for both people and pets is that the human industry has so many more people involved that the cost factor is lower. So in order to deter people in the pet industry from buying it, they reversed it.

Animal Radio News - Lori Brooks

Lori and Flo BearAnimal Ban Law for Animal Abusers
Colorado's Governor signed what's known as the Animal Ban For Cruelty To Animals Conviction legislation. The law bans animal abusers in the state from being able to own a pet for up to five years. The governor says the law, "Increases restrictions of people convicted of felony pet animal cruelty and facilitate mental health and treatments to address the underlying factors that drive tragic animal cruelty."

Potential Risks to Being an Overly Affectionate Pet Owner
Research conducted by Scotland's Caledonian University highlighted potential risks in being over-affectionate with our pets by increasing the risk of catching drug-resistant illnesses. While experts acknowledge and even encourage the bond between a pet parent and their fur kids, some are now recommending limits on physical interaction. The danger is posed by the transfer of antibiotic-resistant bugs and carries a risk for humans and animals alike. Dr. Adele Dickson, a health psychologist who led the study, says the research showed how big the problem of antibiotic resistance is. However, this study looked at a very small part of that bigger picture, because they were interested in the affectionate relationship that pet owners have with their pets and the risk that could pose for antibiotic resistance in families. She admits that risk is relatively low, so they're not trying to suggest that pet owners stop showing affection to their pets or stop enjoying their pets, but there are small and simple things that people can do within the home environment and in their interactions with pets that could make a huge difference in fighting the risk of antibiotics resistance. The recommendations are to avoid kissing pets on the mouth; don't let pets lick your mouth or nose; wash your hands after petting animals, especially before meals; and make sure pets eat from their own bowls and don't use household utensils The over-prescription and incorrect use of antibiotics is the main cause of antimicrobial resistance in humans and animals. The number of animals harboring drug-resistant bugs is very low, less than less than 1-percent of healthy pets, but experts feel the risk isn't worth taking.

Goat with HappyPersonGoats Prefer Happy People
Goats get a lot of love on the Internet. However, they get less attention than cats and dogs, even whales and monkeys, when it comes to understanding their cognition or thinking. But, an agricultural scientist at the Institute for Farm Animal Biology in Germany describes goats as creative, attentive and even complex. His past research had shown goats to be adept at reading subtle human body language. Now, these researchers have found goats are also able to distinguish human happy faces from sad ones and they prefer happy. Another expert on the study team from Brazil says, "If goats are sensitive to our facial expressions - that means that they possess very complex psychological abilities." It also puts goats in rare company. Other animals, such as sheep, had shown that they could recognize human faces. But only dogs and horses had previously demonstrated an ability to differentiate between expressions. Whether the new finding means goats understand what emotion a human expression conveys is unknown, only dogs have proved capable of that, but it means they've at least got the first step in that process mastered. And, that's not all we learned reading this research. Just for fun, goats love dried pasta, which was the reward of choice in the experiment.

Police Take Parrot Into CustodyParrot Nearly Ruins Drug Raid
A parrot was taken into custody in Brazil after nearly ruining a police raid, because the bird had been trained to be a lookout for his owners who were arrested on suspicion of dealing crack. When police showed up, the bird repeatedly began squawking a phrase that means "Mama, Police!" But, it seems that is all the bird knows. Police took the bird into custody and said that in the three weeks they had the bird at the police station, the parrot said nothing. The bird has since been taken to a local zoo where it will be taught to fly. This is not the first time a parrot has been accused of aiding drug-trafficking suspects. In Colombia in 2010, a parrot named Lorenzo made international headlines after police recorded him warning his owners, "Run! Run!" in Spanish at the sight of police officers approaching. He was found guarding a cache of guns and pot. Colombian law enforcement claimed even back then, nearly a decade ago, that there had already been an estimated 1,700 birds seized for having been trained to alert their owners if police approached.

Man Tries To Sell Car To Pay For Dog's Surgery  Man Tries to Sell Car For Dog's Surgery
It all ended well for an Indianapolis man who thought he was going to have to sell his car to afford surgery for his dog who had eaten a sock and a plastic baby bottle. The man posted his car online saying he'd take a thousand dollars less than he wanted for it, so his white pit bull mix dog named Gemini could have surgery. However, the S.O.A.R Initiative (Street Outreach Animal Response) group was able to find a surgeon to help and also raised nearly $3,000 in donations after they posted the story on their Facebook page.

Bus Service Takes Dogs to Day Care
There's a new kind of pet service that has popped up all around the country, from Oregon to Massachusetts, and it's a bus service for dogs. Just like kids who ride school busses, dogs that go to day care in some cities are also being picked up by a little bus or van. It's called the Bark Bus and some businesses are also renting out busses for dog parties.

EarListen to the entire Podcast of this show (#1124)

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