Animal Radio® Show #517 October 31, 2009

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Happy Halloween!


Declaw Hall of Shame

While declawing is illegal in most civilized nations, it is unfortunately still a common practice here in the United States. Declawing is culturally accepted in the United States, while other countries considering it unethical and unnecessary mutilation. 

What most people don’t understand that declawing a cat is actually an amputation of not only the nail but also part of the bone up to the knuckle.  This can result in behavior problems, as the cat can no longer scratch and my stop using the litter box.  Also, a declawed cat’s behavior may change, as they can no longer defend themselves and may become fearful and hide.    If you look at the cats in a shelter, you will find many declawed cats because of the problems that resulted after declawing. 

We talk to one of the creators of the Declaw Hall of Shame.  The Declaw Hall of Shame publishes the names of veterinarians and animal hospitals as well as other individuals and organizations that practice, promote, and perpetuate the cruel and needless practice of digital amputation, popularly and euphemistically known as declawing.

It is believed that most veterinarians don’t declaw for the money, they are just not adept at handling behavior issues.  Some veterinarians also believe that if they don’t do it for their client, they will go somewhere else, it might not be done as well, or the cat will end up in a shelter.

Some vets offer to declaw a cat while they are undergoing other surgeries, such as a spay or neuter.  The Declaw Hall of Shame considers that “Supersizing” sort of like asking if you want a shake with your happy meal!

Please think again if you are thinking about having your cat declawed!  There are alternatives!



Scratching Beneath The Surface – Right Dog Diet Can Remedy Allergies

Andrea Arden  

As dogs across the country are scratching incessantly, licking at “hot spots,” and “messing” on the carpet, half of their owners are turning to prescriptions to relieve their distress when instead, a simple remedy is readily available: the right natural diet.  Don’t just over up the problem with medications; you need to get to the root of the problem!  Food allergies are now the third most common type of allergies after airborne and flea allergies, which is on the rise. 

This could be because more and more people are feeding commercial foods, and maybe some dogs are having a hard time digesting this food.  More often than not, dogs are allergic to the protein in food, which is difficult for them to break down.

Some people automatically switch to an alternative diet, such as venison or duck.  But don’t do this unless your dog has been diagnosed, because if they do develop a food allergy, you can no longer use that food.   You should reserve these special diets for a time when your dog has actually been diagnosed with a food allergy. 

There are two ways to test for food allergies.  A good vet can take a guess at it being a certain type of allergy by the symptoms.  For example, if a dog has very red irritated feet and stomach and they are scratching them, this is more likely a food allergy.  Flea allergies are also pretty easy to determine, as you will see the “flea dirt.”  While it is costly, some veterinarians will do an allergy panel, which can average around $600 in the New York area.

Large   populations of dog owners complain that their animals suffer from diarrhea, flatulence, scratching and dermatitis.  They don’t understand how easy it can be to give their dogs relief without a prescription by feeding them the right kind of food.  Fewer than half of owners recognize which ingredients exacerbate these distressing symptoms, dairy and wheat being the biggest offenders. 

If your dog does have allergies, try to avoid potential allergens such as wheat, gluten or soy.  And if possible, you want to avoid foods that have artificial flavors, colors or preservatives.  These are not necessary and there are so many good options out there that are of a more natural approach.

Look for the Welllness Pet Food line, which has a prescription diet with very simple ingredients.  Their Simple Food Solutions has just five main ingredients: duck, lamb or salmon, and another is an easily digestible carbohydrate, such as ground rice.


Love At First Sniff

Christina & Jasmine, Pepper & Tanky

Christina and Jasmine are the creators of Pepper & Tanky, an Eau du Parfum for Dogs.  Pepper & Tanky perfumes are custom blended in France and use only the finest natural oils available.  However, just like humans, pets have their own body oils, so the perfume will smell different on every pet. There is a collection of Eau du Parfum that is perfect for every pooch!  Pepper & Tanky didn’t leave out the large masculine dog; they have their own personal scent called  “Big Dawg.”  Other scents are Peaches N’Cream, Vanilla Woof and Puppy Love.

People love the Pepper & Tanky perfumes because they don’t have to take their pets to the groomers as often.  The groomers love it because they put the scents on the dogs and it make the actually grooming last longer.

While there is alcohol in the perfume, the content is very low, about 45%, with most perfumes at 90% alcohol.  However, it is still best to spray the perfume on your hands, rub them together and then rub your hands over your pet.

Whether your dog likes to be a pampered pooch, or is a little more rough-and-tumble, Pepper & Tanky will make your dog feel as if they've just been to the poshest spa, while keeping them smelling fresh in between grooming appointments and baths.

Pepper & Tanky is more than an Eau du Parfum for dogs. It's a token of love and appreciation for the furry companion who's always been there and shown unconditional love!  What a great Christmas Gift for the dog lover, as every dog should smell this good!


Vladae, The "World Famous" Russian Dog Wizard

Dog Won’t Get In The Car

This 2-year-old German Shepherd mix will not get in the car.  Vladae explains that unknown things, like riding in a car, can be a very scary thing for dogs.  His guardian has been trying to coax him in the car by feeding him his meals in the car.  She will also throw treats in the car to get him in.  Vladae suggests teaching him the command “in.”  Start by crate training him at home.  Provide a treat that he loves and only give it to him during this training.  Bring the dog to the crate and tell him “in.”  When he goes in, give him the treat, Do this many times, gradually increasing the starting distance from the crate.  Then, move up to getting him in the car.  When the car is in the garage, say “in,” giving him treats when he does.  You can then open the garage door and turn on the engine, again saying “in” and giving him treats when he does.  Then, move back to the house and put him in crate for 1-2 hours.  Do not feed him during this time.   After that, move the car about 100 feet from the house and take him to it, again saying “in” and giving him treats when he does.  If he doesn’t get in, have someone help you by standing on the other side of the car and open both back doors again saying “in” and giving him treats when he does.  During this training, use the Herm Sprenger collar, which may not look very nice, but will NOT cause injury, used properly and gently as intended.  Remember, even a plastic knife can be a very dangerous weapon in the wrong hands. The collar works on the same principal that pups learn from the mother dog when she picks up or reprimands the pup around the neck with her teeth. The dog knows to relax or stop an unwanted behavior.

What Is The Best Dog For A Trucker?

It has been five years since this guy’s dog has passed away, and he is now ready for another dog.  His is an over-the-road trucker and wants a dog that will fit his lifestyle.  Vladae first asks him if he prefers large or small dogs.  He states his previous dog was a Cocker Spaniel, which he says was a good size for him.  However, Vladae states that these dogs are not the best dog for a trucker.  For a big dog, Vladae recommends the First Dog, the Portuguese Water Dog.   Or, for a small dog he recommends a Bichon Frise.  Vladae states that you can train any dog to bark and alert a trucker when someone approaches the vehicle.   To do this, when it is dark, put the dog in the truck and sit inside with him.  Have a friend approach from the side and make noises, such as knocking or scratching.  When the dog looks around, say to your dog “Who is this?” several times.  This should get him barking.

Dog Bites Husband During Night

A 2-year-old Pomeranian sleeps in the bed with his guardian and her husband.  He starts out sleeping at the foot of the bed, but eventually moves up to the middle of the bed between them.  When her husband moves or turns over, the dog bites him.  Vladae suggests that if she doesn’t want to move the dog from the bed permanently, make sure that when everyone is in bed that her husband has the “Pet Convincer.”  This is a product that emits a blast of air, which will startle the dog and make him stop.  When the dog starts to bite him, the husband needs to blast the dog with the Pet Convincer.   However, Vladae suggests that the best remedy is to remove the dog from the bed for about two weeks.  Place him in a crate and place the crate on the husband’s side of the bed.   If the dog starts to whine, the husband needs to smack the side of the crate and make a startling sound.  Or, he can smack the crate and then give him a blast of the Pet Convincer.  The husband then needs to praise the dog when he stops, hug his wife and then everyone should go back to sleep.  After a few nights, the whining from the dog should stop.  After a couple of weeks, you can then let the dog sleep in the bed.  During this time, the dog should spend more time with the husband.  The husband should feed him and walk him. 



Vinnie Penn, Animal Radio's Resident Party Animal

Dogs Mouths Are Cleaner Than Humans

You know one saying, that may be true or may be not, but even if it is true (which I would find hard to believe) I’m sick of hearing it.  That saying is, “Dogs’ mouths are cleaner than humans!” 

My two beloved dogs, you know I always gave them kisses on the head and played with their ears, but I never really did, and I am just going to come right out and say it, the French kiss with my dog or the full on their tongue lapping at my lips kiss.  I never really did that.  When I see people doing that, especially after you’ve just seen the dog in particular spend a good 20 minutes giving himself a “genital bath,” and then the person says, “You know, the dogs’ mouths are cleaner than humans!”

I’m finding it hard to believe.  Is there Doggy Scope?  Is there Doggy Floss? I know my two dogs didn’t get up in the morning and brush their teeth.  So how is it possible that this dog who just ate a lizard, lapped at his own crotchery region and maybe even ate his own feces, or licked another dog’s but, his mouth is really cleaner than your own you’re saying?

If that’s the case, then might I suggest you just have all of your teeth and your gums removed?  Just stitch your mouth up.  Because if your dog’s mouth is cleaner than yours, than yours should never be allowed to be open again!



Animal Radio® News with Bobbie Hill

MRSA Found In Homes With Cats
Summer research shows cat owners are more likely to find MRSA around their homes. In recent years, the drug resistant germ has been showing up in pets like birds, cats, dogs, horses, rabbits and rodents. The Center for Hygiene and Health in Home and Community at Simmons College in Boston tested all kinds of surfaces and found MRSA in nearly half the homes tested. Homes with cats were eight times more likely to have MRSA in the home. For protection the researchers suggest not just washing your hands after handling pets but not letting a pet lick anyone on the face. Never wash pet food dishes in the same sink you wash your dishes in.

Unexpected UPS Shipment
Cody the cat went from Dallas to Chicago courtesy of UPS.  Cody jumped into a 2 by 3 foot box being packed by his owner and made himself at home in the packing material. The folks at Chiro One Wellness Center in Woodstock Illinois opened the box to find the black and white cat snoozing. The staff called the number on Cody’s collar and after spending the night at a vet’s office he flew back home, this time in a cat carrier. The clinic made him patient of the month.

Bears Prefer Minivans!
We know the bears in Jellystone park love Pic-a-nic baskets... but did you know the bears in Yosemite prefer the contents of minivans! The Journal of Mammalogy released black bear related data collected on the 900 reported vehicle break-ins in Yosemite National Park between 2001 and 2007. The stats show 26% of vehicles broken into by bears were minivans. Second on the list were SUV’s with small cars and sedans following with lower percentage of bear break ins!

Vick Won’t Face His Victims
Convicted dog killer Michael Vick claims he’s sorry for what he did to countless pit bulls in his dog fighting enterprise but he won’t face his victims. When Vick was in the Bay Area recently for the Eagles-Raiders game the group Bay Area Doglovers Responsible About Pitbulls extended an invitation to him to visit eight of his former dogs.  Vick said no. The co founder of BAD RAP said the group had made provisions to adhere to Vick’s parole conditions, which forbid him from being near animals, but the A.P. reported Vick wouldn’t show.  (Conditions of parole would have made it possible for him to see the dogs from behind a window at a specified distance.)

Philadelphia Eagles Unveil Program To Support Animals
Here’s the flipside – fair’s fair - The Philadelphia Eagles just unveiled a program to support animal welfare groups. After facing months of criticism for signing convicted dogfighter Michael Vick the NFL team from the city of Brotherly Love announced TAWK, the acronym stands for Treating Animals With Kindness. The team gave $50,000 grants each to the Humane Society of Berks County, the Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society and the Humane Society of the U.S. The aim is to reduce animal abuse, end dog fighting through education and awareness and encourage spaying and neutering.

First Time Award For An Animal Related Group
Dr. Melinda Merck, ASPCA Senior Director of Veterinary Forensics, received the National Asset Forfeiture Award from the U.S. Department of Justice. It was the first time for an animal related group to receive such recognition in what the ASPCA described as an unprecedented moment in animal welfare history. Dr. Merck’s investigation of the forensic evidence of Michael Vick’s Bad Newz Kennels was crucial in securing a conviction against Vick and three others. By the way, as part of his sentencing Vick was ordered to pay $928,000 to the U.S. government for expenses related to the care of the Pit Bulls seized from his property.

NEWS UPDATE Brought To You By World's Best Cat Litter™


Your Vet Questions Answered with Dr. Debbie

Dog Appears To Have Some Type Of Seizures

This 3-year-old Labrador seems to have some sort of seizure when he has an active day.  He is a hunting dog and after a big day, when he gets home he seems to tense up, claws come out and his eyes get real large.   These seizures usually last about 30 seconds.   Dr. Debbie states that labs usually have a sort of collapsing episode that can be completely different from a seizure, which is more of an exercised induced collapse.   During these exercised induced collapsing episodes, the dog is usually aware of what is going on, but their body will not cooperate.   They way to tell the difference, is that during a seizure, they will lay on their side, kick and paddle, foam at the mouth and can even lose bodily functions.   You want to get a blood test as close to the episode as possible, because there is some things that are dynamic and some things can change during these episodes.  There is also something called hunting dog hypoglycemia problem.  Dr. Debbie suggests that this “hunting” dog retire!

Border Collie 100lbs and Still Growing

This guy adopted a Border Collie from a Border Collie Rescue.   But, so far the 7-month-old dog is almost 100 pounds and is still growing.  Unfortunately, this is not the dog this guy signed up for – what should he do?

Cat Is Losing Hair From Chin And Tail

This woman’s cat is an indoor/outdoor cat.  Lately, he seems to be missing some hair from his chin and tail.  Could someone be messing with him, or is it acne or allergies?  Dr. Debbie tries to determine just what is going on.



Talk With Your Animals with Joy Turner

Did I Do The Right Thing? 

A guardian wants to speak with Shimp and Looey, a cat and a dog who were put down.  They animals tells Joy to tell their guardian not to worry, that it was the right time to let them go.  They say that us humans always know in our hearts, even though our minds may question it, our hearts really do know when it is time to let our pets go. 

The guardian’s other dog, Bowser, says to tell his guardian he is not ready yet!  (He is just being funny!)  Bowser’s guardian says he is a real funny dog, and Bowser agrees.  Bowser states that if people could actually hear him and understand him, he would be a standup comic!


Animal Minute With Britt Savage

German Shepherd Saves Elderly Couple

A German Shepherd, Timber wolf mix, named Shawna is being called a hero for saving an elderly couple.  Eve and Norman Fertig, both 81 years old, were taking care of injured birds in the wildlife sanctuary on their Alden, New York property when a surprise snowstorm hit.  When the couple headed back to their house, they were trapped by fallen trees and heavy snow.   Shawna, who weighs 160 pounds, dug a tunnel through the snow to their deck and then came back to lead the couple through the tunnel.  She didn’t stop until they were all safely inside where all three collapsed for the night.  The local fire department has given Shawna a certificate declaring her a hero.



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