The Pet Tree House - Where Pets Are Family Too : March 2013 The Pet Tree House - Where Pets Are Family Too : March 2013

Friday, March 29, 2013

Do You Know the Biggest Risks to Pets at Easter Time?

Brightly colored plastic grass, plastic eggs, Lilies and chocolate pose the biggest risk to pets at Easter time. These items may be symbols of the season but they can also make dogs and cats very sick and even result in death.

“Lilies can be very toxic to cats,” cautions Dr. Julia Georgesen at Blum Animal Hospital in Chicago. Georgesen is also resident pet expert for Eye on Pets on WBBM Newsradio and “All parts of the plant, the leaves, the stems and the pollen cause severe kidney failure in cats and it can happen 6-12 hours after they eat the plant.”

Georgesen says there is no antidote for Lily poisoning in cats. The best chance of survival for a cat is early veterinarian intervention. Early symptoms of poisoning are vomiting, dehydration, staggering and seizures. Cats may even stop producing urine.

“If you have a cat, you should avoid having Lilies in your house. That includes Tiger Lilies and Day Lilies,” she says. Cats can get sick from drinking even a small amount of water from a vase of Lilies.

“The pet poison center says calls increase 200 percent during the week of Easter,” Georgesen says and many of those calls involve chocolate – another common Easter treat that is toxic to pets. “Chocolate contains a chemical relative of caffeine that causes vomiting, diarrhea, hyperactivity, abnormal heart rhythms, seizures and death in both dogs and cats.” The darker and more bitter the chocolate, the greater the danger.

Plastic and/or aluminum Easter grass can also cause problems for pets and may lead to a serious intestinal blockage that might require surgery. “The plastic becomes stringy and can anchor at the base of a pet’s tongue or stomach, making it difficult to pass.” Georgesen says consider using straw, tissue paper or shredded newspaper instead to line Easter baskets.

If you are having an Easter egg hunt, be careful with plastic eggs. Georgesen says they can be broken, chewed and swallowed by pets, causing vomiting, diarrhea, and obstructions. Hard-boiled eggs can spoil quickly and make pets very sick, so keep track of all the eggs you use.

And while a fluffy little duckling or bunny might seem like an appealing Easter gift, Georgesen says they are anything but. For example, the average domestic duck relieves itself once every 15 minutes.

“Once that novelty wears off and the daily responsibility of feeding, cleaning and exercising sets in, a lot of these animals are dumped in parks or shelters,” says Georgesen. “Play it safe and buy your child a plush stuffed rabbit or chick instead.”


Veterinarian Says Parents Should Resist the Urge to Give Live Rabbits and Chicks as Easter Gifts

A Purdue University veterinarian says parents should resist the urge to give live rabbits and chicks as Easter gifts.

Lorraine Corriveau, a pet wellness veterinarian, says the live chicks and rabbits available in many pet stores this time of year require more maintenance and care than most people realize.

"Often many folks think rabbits need only a small cage and don't need much attention," Corriveau says. "The truth is they have dietary requirements that include a balanced diet of pellets, fresh lettuce and other vegetables, and grass hays. They also require daily exercise and enough space to perform three consecutive hops in a cage. When you get a rabbit, it's potentially a 10-year commitment because the average life expectancy of most rabbits is 10 years."

Young children tend to be rougher and not understand that they can easily injure a rabbit's back. In addition, rabbits have long toenails that leave deep scratches if handled improperly.

Chicks can carry salmonella and E. coli, which can cause diarrhea and possibly even death to young children. Chicks also can be dangerous when they get older.

"Chicks grow into chickens," she says. "Roosters can potentially become aggressive when they hit sexual maturity. Roosters also tend to make a lot of noise in the wee hours of the morning before the sun comes up."

After Easter many shelters are overwhelmed by the number of rabbits admitted and have to euthanize several. Rabbits are the third-most relinquished pets to animal shelters, which are usually equipped to handle only a few rabbits and rodents at a time.

Rabbits also are often released to the wild to fend for themselves, and those that don't starve become easy prey for predators, she says.

"Those cute, long-eared, baby bunnies with their twitching noses and the soft, yellow, adorable chicks are not toys, and they grow up to become rabbits and chickens that carry big responsibilities," Corriveau says.


Thursday, March 28, 2013

Man Buys Stolen 10 Foot Long Python and Immediately Regrets It

Coventry, England - Dwayne Matthews, a 29-year-old man was at a house party when a van pulled up selling snakes. Dwayne bought Bruce, a 10 ft long Python, with the intent to sell him later. Unfortunately for Dwayne, Bruce was stolen property, and pretty mad about it.

Dwayne awoke the next morning to see Bruce the Snake trying to eat his sleeping friend. After saving his friend, Dwayne tried to sell Bruce to a local pet shop and was arrested for possession of stolen goods.


Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Collar and Leash Pet Boutique - The Oldest Pet Store in Chicago has Stopped Selling Dogs from Puppy Mills

Chicago’s oldest pet store, Collar and Leash Pet Boutique, has decided to make some big changes.

Sonja Raymond’s family has been operating Collar & Leash since 1956, buying the dogs it sells from puppy mills.

“You know I had gone on the word of my distributors that I get my dogs from that ‘Oh yeah these people are reputable, I’ve known them for years.’ Within the past year I have found out they lied.”

So, Raymond has decided no more. Instead, Collar & Leash will sponsor adoptions from shelters and shelter rescues.

It is a decision championship dog owner Grace Tydings believes is long overdue.

“There are dogs that are basically pumping out litters of litters of litters of puppies until they basically die. It is pretty disgusting,” said Tydings.

As for Raymond and her pet store, stopping the sale of puppy mill dogs could also make good business sense.

“I have actually received a ton of feedback and it has all been excellent,” said Raymond.


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Pit Bull Legislation- Bill in Danger - House and Senate Committees Close to Deadlock!

If your legislator sits on THE COMMITTEES hearing the bill that addresses the Court of Appeals ruling declaring pit bulls "inherently dangerous" then please ACT NOW!  Very different bills (HB 78/SB 160) that would BOTH remedy the ruling have passed the House and Senate but the differences in these bills must be resolved for it to move forward. The House Judiciary committee hearing to consider the Senate version of the bill is Wednesday, March 27th.

The bill is in danger and we are running out of time – The Senate and House versions of the bill are quite different. This could lead to a deadlock that would mean the legislative session could end without a solution. Many people would be forced to choose between their beloved dog and their home.

Why should I care if I don't have a pit bull? –People who care about Maryland's dogs (whether you have a pit bull or not) MUST make your voices heard or many dogs will be turned into our already overcrowded shelters and euthanized. This Court of Appeals ruling must be resolved or this dangerous precedent could eventually affect additional breeds of dogs, both large and small.

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Monday, March 25, 2013

Dogs Prayer

I did not write this prayer, but found it so beautiful that I had to share. Arthur unknown.

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One of the Cutest Videos You Will Ever See - Cat Leads Dog Home by Leash

If you haven't seen this video yet, you are in for a treat! This is one of the cutest videos that I have seen. I am sharing.


Meet The Cornish Rex Cat - Often Called the Greyhound of the Cat World

It’s hard not to stare or take a second glance at this cat with giant bat like ears perched on an egg-shaped head and a soft, curly coat. Go ahead and declare the Cornish Rex to be funny-looking. He won’t take offense. In fact, he is a happy-go-lucky comedian who loves to perform tricks and show off new antics to his favorite people. He may even outrace the family dog in a game of fetch. This is one cat who is never shy when it comes to demonstrating his delight in being with you.

The most striking feature of the breed is its very noticeably curly coat. Ideally falling in marcel waves, the coat is very short, lies close to the body, and is incredibly soft to the touch, prompting comparisons to cut velvet, karakul lamb, rabbit fur, or silk. In fact, nothing else feels exactly like a Cornish Rex coat.

Although otherworldly in appearance, Cornish Rex cats originated in Cornwall, England, where one first appeared in a litter of barn cats in 1950. A cream-colored male, named Kallibunker, was covered in tight rows of tiny curls, giving him the appearance of a miniature lamb. As he grew, his differences from his littermates became more dramatic: a slender, fine-boned body standing on long legs, a narrow head, enormous “bat ears,” and a long, whippy tail. Kallibunker was a genuine mutation and was bred back to his mother to produce curly kittens. The curly coated cats were bred with Burmese, Siamese, and British domestic shorthair cats, resulting in a broad genetic base for the Cornish Rex breed and the knowledge that the gene was recessive.

Some Rexes enjoy retrieving and will bring back objects for you to toss again and again. They are adept climbers, leapers, and sprinters, and have marvelously agile paws. No shelf or cupboard is safe from a persistent Cornish.

In selecting a Cornish Rex kitten, consider what characteristics are most important to you and discuss them with the breeder, who usually knows each kitten and can help match you with the right one.

Is the Cornish Rex Hypoallergenic?
Despite the assumption that the Cornish rex's lack of hair makes the cat breed hypoallergenic, this is not necessarily true. It should be recognized that no one cat (or dog) is truly capable of being hypoallergenic.


Is this Your Typical Violent and Aggressive Pit Bull? Take a Look at this Picture!

This picture went viral on Reddit over the weekend. A cute pit bull with a bird on its head surrounded by bunnies!

It's no secret that pit bulls get a bad rap. Myths that the dogs have "locking jaws" and always fight to the death are widespread, and studies have shown that the media sensationalize pit bull attacks.


Friday, March 22, 2013

IAMS Shakeable Turkey and Lamb Dog Treats Voluntary Recall

Proctor and Gamble has issued a voluntary market withdrawal of Iams Shakeables Turkey and Lamb Dog Treats with certain ‘Impacted Lot Numbers’ listed below. These treats are being voluntarily withdrawn due to potential for mold growth.

According to the retailer, no other products are affected. Proctor and Gamble claims it has not received any reports of human or pet illnesses.

                      What Products Are Being Withdrawn?

To identify the affected lots, consumers should refer to the first 4 numbers of the second line on the bottom of the can.

What Should You Do?
The bulletin warns users to stop feeding the affected products and to return any remaining Iams Shakeables Turkey and Lamb Dog Treats affected by the voluntary withdrawal to their closest PetSmart store for a full refund.

Readers with questions about this event are invited to call Proctor and Gamble (Iams) at 877-894-4458.

You can report complaints about FDA-regulated pet food products by calling the consumer complaint coordinator in your area.

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Sunday, March 17, 2013

SPCA/Humane Society of Prince George's County - Baltimore County is Looking to Partner with a Nonprofit to Manage its Shelter - What Do You Think?

Baltimore County is looking to partner with a nonprofit to manage its shelter. The municipal shelters in Howard County, Anne Arundel County, and Prince George's County are run by the respective county governments, but many in humane circles believe that nonprofit management produces better results. What do you think?

To read the full story, click here:
Nonprofit is sought to help run Baltimore County animal shelter.


Saturday, March 16, 2013

Miranda Lambert Rescues a Puppy from the Side of a Highway!

It was Miranda Lambert to the rescue this week when the country music superstar – and dog lover – saved an abandoned puppy from a scary fate on the side of an Oklahoma highway.

"I just picked this up on the west side of Tishomingo on hwy 22. Please contact Tish animal shelter if he is yours," the 29-year-old, who recently chatted with omg! about her “five and a half” rescue dogs (she co-owns one with her grandmother), tweeted Tuesday, along with this precious picture.

Lambert, who is married to Blake Shelton, also detailed the rescue mission.

"He was in the middle of the hwy with his food bowl and bed... If it wasn't an accident someone is really sick," Lambert wrote. "I guess the pup is mine till I find him a little boy somewhere to love him!"

When she does find a new owner for the pooch – and we're sure the offers are already flowing in – the four-legged friend will come complete with a new name.

"I'm calling him 'Pistol Andy' in honor of the @PistolAnnies record #annieup being announced today! lil Andy:)," Lambert tweeted, referring to her side gig with the girl group.

Fingers crossed "lil Andy" finds a home soon. Until then, he is clearly in good hands.


Have You Heard About Rescue Ink? Advocacy, Protection - This is the Army for the Animals

Rescue Ink is a non-profit animal welfare organization with 501c3 status.

We back up animal rescue groups such as the ASPCA, SPCA, The Humane Society and many smaller rescue groups all over the world. When there is a situation that gets out of control you can rely on us. We are comprised of street guys, military personnel, police officers, private investigators and lawyers. Not to mention an amazing network and core group of volunteers that is second to none. Rescue Ink does whatever necessary within the means of the law — that's what our lawyers tell us to say — to fight abuse and neglect of all kinds.

The Facts

Most of the animals we rescue will spend the rest of their lives with us — at the Rescue Ink Facility. As a true non-profit, we rely on donations and support from friends, fans and communities worldwide to keep the shelter alive and provide a safe haven for the animals.

We invite you to explore our home on the web for more in-depth information. It's people like you, with an interest in our mission, who make the difference.

Visit them on Facebook:

Visit their website:

For ABUSE or RESCUE CASES - or call our 24 Hour Hotline 1-855- RSCUINK (772-8465)

Rescue Ink was recently in Washington, DC, spreading awareness to their mission:

Joe Panz and Big Ant are just two of the members of Rescue Ink. They starred in the hit NatGeo reality show that followed their work helping pets on Long Island. They're in town to bring more awareness to their mission as part of this year's Super Pet Expo and stopped by FOX 5.


Thursday, March 14, 2013

The Decline in the Monarch Butterfly Population Now Marks a Statistical Long-Term Trend

Mexico City - The number of monarch butterflies making it to their winter refuge in Mexico dropped 59 percent this year, falling to the lowest level since comparable record-keeping began 20 years ago, scientists reported Wednesday.

It was the third straight year of declines for the orange-and-black butterflies that migrate from the United States and Canada to spend the winter sheltering in mountaintop fir forests in central Mexico. Six of the last seven years have shown drops, and there are now only one-fifteenth as many butterflies as there were in 1997.

The decline in the monarch population now marks a statistical long-term trend and can no longer be seen as a combination of yearly or seasonal events, the experts said.
But they differed on the possible causes.

Illegal logging in the reserve established in the monarch wintering grounds was long thought to contribute, but such logging has been vastly reduced by increased protection, enforcement and alternative development programs in Mexico.

The World Wildlife Fund, one of the groups that sponsored the butterfly census, blamed climate conditions and agricultural practices, especially the use of pesticides that kill off the monarchs' main food source, milkweed. The butterflies breed and live in the north in the summer, and migrate to Mexico in the winter.

"The decrease of monarch butterflies ... probably is due to the negative effects of reduction in milkweed and extreme variation in the United States and Canada," the fund and its partner organizations said in a statement.

Omar Vidal, the World Wildlife Fund director in Mexico, said: "The conservation of the monarch butterfly is a shared responsibility between Mexico, the United States and Canada. By protecting the reserves and having practically eliminated large-scale illegal logging, Mexico has done its part."

"It is now necessary for the United States and Canada to do their part and protect the butterflies' habitat in their territories," Vidal said.

Logging was once considered the main threat to the reserve, located west of Mexico City. At its peak in 2005, logging devastated as many as 1,140 acres (461 hectares) annually in the reserve, which covers 193,000 acres (56,259-hectares). But a 2012 aerial survey showed almost no detectable logging, the first time that logging had not been found in detectable amounts since the mountaintop forests were declared a nature reserve in 2000.

The loss of milkweed in the monarchs' summering areas in the north can make it hard for the butterflies to lay eggs, and for the offspring that do hatch to find enough food to grow to maturity. In addition, unusually hot or dry weather can kill eggs, meaning fewer adult butterflies. For butterflies that reach adulthood, unusual cold, lack of water or tree cover in Mexico can mean they're less likely to survive the winter.

Lincoln Brower, a leading entomologist at Sweet Briar College in Virginia, said in a statement that "the report of the dwindling monarch butterfly winter residence in Mexico is ominous."

"This is not just the lowest population recorded in the 20 years for which we have records," Brower said. "It is the continuation of a statistically significant decrease in the monarch population that began at least a decade ago."

However, Brower differed on whether small-scale logging, the diversion of water resources and other disruptive activity in the reserves in Mexico are playing a role in the decline.

"To blame the low numbers of monarchs solely on what is happening north of Mexico is misleading," Brower said. "Herbiciding of soybean and corn fields that kills milkweed is a serious problem, but the historical decline over the past 19 years has multiple causes."

"All three countries need to face up to the fact that it is our collective activities that are killing the migratory phenomenon of the monarch butterfly," he said.

Homero Aridjis, a writer and environmentalist, said, "The decline in butterflies in the (Mexico) reserve is truly alarming."

Aridjis is from Contepec, a town in Michoacan state where monarchs used to appear in the fall but don't show up anymore. Six other communities in and around the reserve that once had butterflies saw no detectable numbers this year. Aridjis cited a lack of control on tourists, crime in the area and small-scale logging as threats to the reserve.

The head of Mexico's nature reserves, Luis Fueyo, said there are still some problem to be solved at the wintering grounds in Mexico, including some scale-logging and water availability. The monarchs don't drink any water throughout their long migration until the reach Mexico, and the mountain streams in the area have been affected by drought and human use.

The migration is an inherited trait. No butterfly lives to make the round-trip. The millions of monarchs cluster so densely on tree boughs in the reserve that researchers don't count their individual numbers but rather measure the amount of forest they cover.

This winter, the butterflies covered just 2.93 acres (1.19 hectares), down from 7.14 acres (2.89 hectares) last year. (AP)

Take a look at the videos below to see these beautiful butterflies.


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Dog Swallows Over 100 Pennies

New York City, NY - A  cute little Jack Russell Terrier,  appropriately named Jack, swallowed at least $1.11 in change last weekend while his owner, Tim Kelleher, wasn't looking, according to Dr. Amy Zalcman, the senior emergency doctor at BluePearl Veterinary Partners who oversaw Jack's treatment.

Kelleher took Jack to the BluePearl clinic in Manhattan Saturday afternoon after he noticed the pennies were gone and his dog was sick and vomiting.

X-rays performed on the 13-year-old dog immediately showed a collection of pennies inside his body so veterinarians performed an endoscopy, using a camera to locate the pennies.  It took an internal  medicine specialist nearly two hours to remove all of the 111 pennies still left in Jack's system.  The doctor removed them four to five at a time, grabbing them with the scope and placing them in an attached basket, according to Zalcman.

"I would say he's a very lucky dog," she told  "First, that we were able to get them all out by scope and not surgery, and that he hasn't had any secondary signs of zinc toxicity."

Owner Kelleher told the New York Daily News his "voracious Tasmanian devil" of a pet was going after a bagel when he got the pennies instead.

"He climbed on my desk to get at the bag with the bagel and knocked the change all over the floor," said Kelleher, who could not be reached today by  "While he was licking up the crumbs, he swallowed the pennies."

Zalcman said the zinc pennies could have caused damage to Jack's kidneys, liver and red blood cells and eventually blocked his intestines, especially given the amount that he swallowed.

"We certainly see pennies consumed by dogs but not in this magnitude," she said.  "That's what is so extreme about this case."

Jack's owner said his dog is back to his normal self after the nearly $2,500 procedure, part of which was paid for by Tampa-based Frankie's Friends, an animal charity.

"He's driving me crazy again," Kelleher told the Daily News.


Diamond Pet Foods Issues Cat Food Recall in 25 States

Diamond Pet Foods issues recall due to low levels of thiamine. Cats fed product long-term could be at risk for thiamine deficiency.

Select Diamond Pet Foods products may have low levels of thiamine (Vitamin B1) prompting the voluntary recall of Premium Edge Finicky Adult Cat Formula dry cat food, Premium Edge Senior Cat Hairball Management Formula dry cat food, Premium Edge Kitten Formula dry cat food, Diamond Naturals Kitten Formula dry cat food and 4health All Life Stages Cat Formula dry cat food. According to a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) release, cats fed the recalled product exclusively for several weeks may be at risk for developing a thiamine deficiency.

The following production codes have been recalled:
  • Premium Edge Finicky Adult Cat Formula, 18-pound bags, distributed in Massachusetts with a “Best by” date of July 10, 2013, and production code NGF0703.
  • Premium Edge Finicky Adult Cat Formula, six-pound bags, distributed in Florida, Massachusetts, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia, with “Best by” dates of Aug. 15, 2013, and Aug. 16, 2013, and production code NGF0802.
  • Premium Edge Senior Cat Hairball Management Formula, six-pound and 18-pound bags, distributed in Colorado, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Oklahoma, with “Best by” dates of Jan. 3, 2014, and Jan. 4, 2014, and production code NGS0101.
  • Premium Edge Senior Cat Hairball Management Formula, six-pound and 18-pound bags, distributed in Florida, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia, with a “Best by” date of July 10, 2013, and production code NGS0702.
  • Premium Edge Kitten Formula, six-ounce samples, six-pound and 18-pound bags, distributed in Florida, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia, with “Best by” dates of Sept. 26, 2013, Sept. 29, 2013, Sept. 30, 2013, Oct. 2, 2013, and production code MKT0901.
  • Diamond Naturals Kitten Formula, six-ounce sample and six-pound bags, distributed in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, with a “Best by” date of Sept. 30, 2013, and production code MKT0901.
  • 4health All Life Stages Cat Formula, five-pound and 18-pound bags, distributed in Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, with “Best by” dates of Aug. 14, 2013, and Aug. 18, 2013, and production code NGF0802.

At this time, there have been no complaints regarding thiamine levels, or any other health issues, related to these products. However, after tests conducted by the company indicated low levels of thiamine, the FDA says Diamond Pet Foods tested all other Diamond brands for thiamine deficiency to ensure product safety. No other product manufactured by Diamond Pet Foods is involved in this recall.

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Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Pet Owners You May Be Paying More for Vet Care

Pet owners, you may want to start saving more money for veterinarian care this year. The reason goes all the way back to Washington and an unintended consequence from medical reform.

Dog owner Lori Heiselman was surprised where her veterinarian posted a warning on Facebook.

The notice read: “Because medical equipment and supplies will be going up in cost, that extra expense will have to passed on to the customers.”

So Lori is already tightening her belt to pay for the increase in her dog’s care. Though she doesn’t like it, she’s willing to pay more for her pets.

“They’re very important. They’re members of the family,” said Heiselman.

Why the increase? Its part of a new 2.3-percent federal excise tax on certain medical devices that just went into effect. The tax will help fund the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare, intended for people, not pets. Manufacturers pay the tax, but a recent survey found more than half plan to pass it along.

Some vets say they can’t afford it. Dr. Mike Hatcher is one of them. He explained, “I’m extremely concerned how this is going to be a hidden tax to our consumers that is going to be passed on.”

How does this work? Medical devices used only on animals are exempt. However, items including IV pumps, sterile scalpels and anesthesia equipment, which are medical devices that have a dual use, meaning they can be used on people and animals, will be taxed. Hatcher said, “Putting off an equipment purchase is something that can terribly affect our clients’ ability to have quality care.”

The American Veterinary Medical Association represents 82,000 vets. At this point, they don’t know how much this new tax will indirectly cost them. The organizations members are waiting to hear from more device makers.

Dr. Mark Lutschaunig is the director of the Governmental Relations Division of the American Veterinary Medical Association.

“Congress never intended for this tax to impact veterinarian medicine and unfortunately it has, and I think that’s very unfortunate that veterinarian medicine now is subsidizing human health care,” said Dr. Lutschaunig.

Congressional sources who worked on the Affordable Care Act said lawmakers tried to exclude vets from being affected by the dual use medical devices tax, but it was too complicated.

Carol Smock knows about complications. She founded a charity that helps struggling pet owners pay for vet care. Smock started Brown Dog Foundation after struggling to pay for her chocolate lab’s medical bills while she was unemployed. Her organization is a 501c3 public charity that provides funding to families who find themselves in similar situations: A sick pet that would likely respond to treatment, but due to an unforeseen circumstance, there is not enough money immediately available to make it happen.

Smock is afraid The Brown Dog Foundation is going to be overwhelmed with requests.

“The impact this price increase is going to have on any of those families I think will be pretty devastating.”

Lori Heiselman said she worries about other families too, but she’ll find the money for her four-legged friends. “We’ll just have to cut back somewhere else.”

Veterinarians say, if your pet is sick or acting strangely, don’t delay care. That could just cause medical problems to get worse.

If you’re concerned with the cost of vet care, be sure to talk with your vet about payment plans or other financial options.


Monday, March 11, 2013

His Dog Was Really His Best Friend - Cemetery Allows Dog to Sleep on His Owners Grave Every Night

A faithful dog has refused to leave the side of his dead master's grave for six years.

A German Shepherd, named Capitan ran away from home after the death of his owner, Argentinian, Miguel Guzman in 2006.

A week later Mr Guzman's family went to pay their respects and found the heartbroken pet sitting by his owner's grave, wailing.

Since then the grieving dog has rarely left the spot at the cemetery in the town of Villa Carlos Paz, central Argentina.

Mr Guzman bought Capitan as a present for his 13-year-old son Damian in 2005.

He died suddenly in March the next year, but by the time his family had returned home from the funeral Capitan was gone.

Mr Guzman's widow Veronica told Argentina's Cordoba newspaper: "We searched for him but he had vanished. We thought he must have got run over and died".

"The following Sunday we went to the cemetery and Damian recognised his pet. Capitan came up to us, barking and wailing, as if he were crying".

She added: "We had never taken him to the cemetery so it is a mystery how he managed to find the place".

"We went back the next Sunday, and he was there again. This time, he followed us home and spent a bit of time with us, but then went back to the cemetery before it started getting dark".

"I don't think he wanted to leave Miguel on his own at night".

The cemetery's director, Hector Baccega remembers the day he first saw the dog. He said: "He turned up here one day, all on his own, and started wandering all around the cemetery until he eventually found the tomb of his master".

"During the day he sometimes has a walk around the cemetery, but always rushes back to the grave. And every day, at six o'clock sharp, he lies down on top of the grave stays there all night".

Mr Baccega said staff at the cemetery are now feeding and taking care of Capitan.

Mr Guzman's son Damian said: "I've tried to bring Capitan home several times, but he always comes straight back to the cemetery. I think he's going to be there until he dies too. He's looking after my dad".

The story is similar to that of Hachiko, an Akita who is said to have waited at a Tokyo train station for its master to return each day for nine years from May 1925, following owner Hidesaburo Ueno's death at work.

Loyal: Capitan has not left the side of Miguel Guzman's grave since 2006 - and sleeps on top of it every night.

His Masters Grave: The German Shepherd ran away from the family home shortly after Mr Guzman's funeral and miraculously found his resting place.

Protector: Although it has been six years since Mr Guzman's death Capitan proves a faithful companion and guards his grave day and night.

Here to stay: Mr Guzman's son Damian has tried to bring Capitan home but he always runs back to the cemetery in Villa Carlos Paz.


Sunday, March 10, 2013

Are Dogs Really Smart? You Bet They Are!

New studies on how dogs process information could lead to more clues about their personalities. CBS News' Rebecca Jarvis talks to the author of "The Genius of Dogs, " a book that shows dogs may be smarter than we think.


Thursday, March 7, 2013

Michael Vick Enrolled in Dog Training Classes at PetSmart

Quarterback Michael Vick, who served prison time for his role in a dogfighting case, was seen enrolling in a dog training class, a sports website reported.

The Philadelphia Eagles' player, whose contract was recently renewed, was spotted at a New Jersey PetSmart store enrolling in a training course, the Philadelphia website Crossing Broad reported.

"Vick, his family and a bodyguard have been attending dog training classes for Angel, the Vick family's young Belgian Malinois," the website said, adding, "Vick frequents the store and signed up for a total of six training classes on Monday evenings."

Vick was released from prison in 2009 after pleading guilty to involvement in an interstate dogfighting ring, and served 21 months in prison. Last October, he divulged he owned a dog, permissible after his probation terms expired last summer, USA Today reported Tuesday.

"Our pet is well-cared for and loved as a member of our family. This is an opportunity to break the cycle. To that end, I will honor my commitment to animal welfare and be an instrument of positive change," he said in a statement at the time.


Monday, March 4, 2013

The Dolphin - Known for Their Intellect, Gregarious Nature, and Acrobatic Abilities

Dolphins are highly intelligent marine mammals and are part of the family of toothed whales that includes orcas and pilot whales.

Dolphins are well known for their intellect, their gregarious nature, and their acrobatic abilities.

They are found worldwide, mostly in shallow seas of the continental shelves, and are carnivores, mostly eating fish and squid. Dolphin coloration varies, but they are generally gray in color with darker backs than the rest of their bodies.

The body of a dolphin is designed to help them move through the water quickly and without exerting huge amounts of energy. They rely on their pectoral fins and the fluke (tail) to help them navigate through the water.

Even though dolphins have 100 teeth, they don’t use them for eating. They do use them to get the fish though and then they swallow them. They can consume up to 30 pounds fish per day. They usually work as a team in their pod to get the school of fish surrounded and balled up. From there, they can plow through the middle and eat plenty as they do so.

Dolphins are found all over the world; generally in shallow seawater of the continental shelves. You can witness dolphins in the cold waters as well as the warm tropical waters. Of course, there are certain species of dolphins that show preference to a particular temperature and region.

Lifespan: Most dolphins live long lives. The bottlenose dolphin can live over 40 years, and the orca can live to be 70 or 80!

Parts of the Dolphin


Man Caught on Video is Believed to Have Sexually Assaulted Horse - Do You Know this Man?

Marion County, Fla. (WTSP) -- Abby Conder treats her horses like they are her kids.

"We breed these horses, we show them, we sell them."

Since May, she says her world class miniature horses have been under attack.

"She had been severely brutalized," Conder said of one of her horses. "She had been raped both by a man and by several objects. She was so hematomed on the back and so bloody, that she looked like they put her whole bottom through a garbage disposal."

The vet found bodily fluids inside the horse. Conder says Marion County Sheriff investigators took a report, but they haven't been much help.

"We have been told that we have to catch him in the act and if we catch him in the act and then call them, they will come and arrest him. But we don't want to die trying to protect our horses."

She says they bought a dog to protect the horses, but it was beaten to death as well. So they setup surveillance and a live internet feed. On Saturday the cameras caught him.

"He inspected the horses that were on the left first to see what horses were in stalls. "

Conder goes on to say, "They are tied to the corner to the fence, where they have been abused and been tortured. They can't fight with a person, they don't know to fight with a person, they would go with anybody.

Conder is hoping someone will recognize the person in the video and is sending him a warning.

"I've never shot a gun in my life, but if I catch this man in this barn taking out another one of my horses and he's gonna traumatize this young horse and hurt her internally like he has my other horses, I will come down and I will kill him."

Florida is one of a handful of states with laws against having sex with animals. That law passed in 2011.

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Sunday, March 3, 2013

Is it True that Chimpanzee Have Better Short-Term Memory Than Humans?

Scientists often talk about how primates are some of the smartest non-human animals, but very rarely do you hear about a species surpassing humans in a intellectual exercise.

A Japanese researcher, Tetsuro Matsuzawa, presented the remarkable capabilities of the chimpanzee Ayumu at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. So, what could Ayumu do that humans couldn’t? When a series of numbers were presented on a screen out of sequence and randomly placed, the chimpanzee was able to remember where the numbers were on the screen, and touch them in the correct sequence to count up from 1.

While only a small group of humans, known as savants, can display such good memorization skills, six out of six chimps were able to accomplish the task.

Scientists report that this skill would help them in their natural environment as they navigate through complex arrangements of tree branches and make other split second decisions in the wild.

Will this mental ability help strengthen the case against using animals in research? Seems ironic, since we know this ability was discovered through research.

Take a look at the video below and see it firsthand.


People Are Having Their Pets Tattooed? Cute or Animal Abuse...You Decide

First, let me say that on my blog I post all types of stories about animals. I did not write this story but felt the need to share it with my readers. I can't believe people are doing this! I don't usually make comments on my content, however, in this case, as an animal lover I feel this is...animal abuse, and there should be a law against it!

What is our society thinking?...or are they! I hope these pictures are photoshopped as the original writer indicated.

Apparently, a new trend is getting tattoos put on your pets, particularly any pet that is hairless. In Russia, the hairless Sphinx is the most frequent tattoo victim. Yes, I said victim.

In the 1980s before the microchip was invented for identifying pets, it wasn’t uncommon to tattoo pets with an identification number, often on their inner ear or bellies while they were under anesthesia for another procedure such as spaying or neutering. I think animals should never, ever be put under just for a tattoo.

Note: some of the images may be photoshopped. Very hard to verify.

                                           Body Modified Dog - Thank GOD this one is totally photoshopped. I hope.

Cosmetic Tattoos - This poor Dalmatian had a pink nose, which is a failure in the breed standard. So his owner got his nose tattooed.

In the ear tattoos - Dogs are often tattooed in their ears, usually with an ID number to help find them if they get lost. But this whole image thing is new.

Sphinx Cat with Ink - By far the most common pet that gets tattooed appears to be the hairless breeds, such as the Sphinx cat pictured here. This could be fake/photoshopped, but it looks pretty much like human tattoos do.

                                       Jack Russel Belly Tattoo - So this poor dog got a Hello Kitty tattoo on it's belly.

Cat immediately post-tattoo - In this photo, the cat is still anesthetized following it's tattoo. I found several shots of this cat being tattooed while under, so I do think it's real. It's a beautiful tattoo. Just wish it was on someone that could give consent.

                                                                             It's likely these are fake...I hope.

Yes, another hairless Sphinx sporting what looks like real ink. That's a lot of ink for a little cat. I'd say it took 3 hours at least.

Daschund Belly Ink - This little guy has a tiny tattoo on his belly. Likely done when it was spayed/neutered and didn't take too much time.

                           Louis Vutton Pigs - Apparently, tattooing pigs is a HUGE thing. Seriously, google it. Scary.

                                                                                     Small Tribal on a Sphinx

                                                                Demon bat wings tattooed on both sides...sad!

                                                                                          Tattooed Pigs