Does Petland Support Puppy Mills?

Petland_screenshot An eight-month-long investigation by the Humane Society of the United States alleges that Petland, the nation's largest puppy retailer, sells puppies from large-scale commercial breeders (otherwise known as puppy mills), despite telling customers that the pups come from reputable breeders. Last time I checked, reputable breeders do not sell puppies to be treated like retail merchandise, nor do they keep dogs in cages their entire lives, or dump or shoot them when they can no longer breed. Watch the "Petland Linked to Puppy Mills" video for more details.

Julia Kamysz Lane     

November 20, 2008 in Current Affairs, Health, Humane, Legislation, media | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

The One She Saved

Sometimes its hard to imagine what your veterinarian is thinking. This honest report from the trenches by buckeyedoc, a veterinarian-turned-veterinary pathologist, provides some heartfelt insight.

Lisa Wogan

November 17, 2008 in Health, Humane, Vignettes, Weblogs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

"Signature Surgery" Could Help Dog Find Family

JennasurgeryidIf this pretty dog were microchipped, she would already be home. Instead, the approximately two-year-old Catahoula Leopard Dog is waiting to be claimed at the Humane Society of Vero Beach and Indian River County in Vero Beach, FL. The shelter staff has named her Jenna. Veterinarian Dr. Elizabeth Bybee made the astonishing discovery that Jenna underwent an expensive, specialized surgery that could be the key to finding her family. The shelter staff is not publicly disclosing details of the "signature surgery" in hopes that Jenna's rightful owner will be able to do so and thus, make a positive ID. For more info, please call the shelter at (772) 388-3331.

Julia Kamysz Lane

November 5, 2008 in Current Affairs, Health, Humane, Legislation, media, Volunteer | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The Making of Rex 2.0

This month, Reason magazine takes a closer look at BioArts' ongoing efforts to expand and improve dog-cloning. The article provides some nuts-and-bolts details that were new to me and raises intriguing questions about the differences between cloning and traditional breeding. Check out the reader reactions as well.

Lisa Wogan

October 29, 2008 in Current Affairs, Dogs and science, Health, Humane, Legislation, Science | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The Trouble with Xylitol

I've received two Xylitol warning emails in the last two weeks, the original seems to be at least one-year-old based on the snopes.com reference. But, regardless, it's worth a mention and a reminder that Xylitol is toxic for dogs--and more widely used than you might think.

Lisa Wogan

October 22, 2008 in Health | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Soldier Pleas For Pup to Leave Iraq

RatchetarmypupFive months ago, Sgt. Gwen Beberg and a fellow soldier saved a little black and white puppy from a pile of burning trash in Baghdad. Soon, Beberg will return home to Minnesota and she requested that her beloved dog, Ratchet, return with her. The Army said no, according to Defense Department rules. Worried that Ratchet would not survive the streets of Iraq, or worse yet be decreed a "nuisance" by locals and killed, Beberg's supporters started an online petition urging the Army to reconsider. The petition has already garnered more than 12,000 signatures. Donations to help Ratchet and other Iraqi pups return home with their U.S. soldiers are gratefully accepted at Operation Baghdad Pups.

Something to keep in mind before you open your wallet: Terri Crisp serves as program coordinator for Operation Baghdad Pups. If you refer back to my post, "Noah's Wish Settles Katrina Allegations," from August 10, 2007, the Attorney General of California investigated Crisp's former rescue group, Noah’s Wish, for its alleged misallotment of Katrina funds. As part of a settlement that followed, Crisp agreed that she would not "serve as an officer, director or trustee, or in any position having the duties or responsibilities of an officer, director, or trustee, with any nonprofit organization for a period of five (5) years from the execution of this Settlement Agreement.” Granted, the title of program coordinator does not appear to break the agreement but I'm wary that she is involved with a rescue group again so quickly after the Katrina investigation.

Julia Kamysz Lane

October 14, 2008 in Current Affairs, Donations , Health, Humane, Legislation, media, Travel, Volunteer | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Poop Patrol Demands Dog DNA

The world has totally gone to the dogs ... and CSI! In a suburb of Tel Aviv, Israel, dog lovers are eligible for rewards if they scoop the poop. I have two questions: 1) who has the fun job of collecting and testing the properly bagged and tossed poop, and 2) is it really necessary to reward someone for responsible behavior? I'm all for positive reinforcement, but I hate to think that people will only do the right thing because of a "what's in it for me?" mindset.

Julia Kamysz Lane

October 14, 2008 in Health, Legislation, Recreation | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Another Pet Food Recall

On Friday, Mars Veterinary announced a "precautionary" dry pet food recall due to concerns over potential salmonella contamination. As far as I can tell, no pets have been reported ill. Read the recall announcement with list of recalled products.

Lisa Wogan

September 17, 2008 in Food, Health | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

German Shepherd Dials 911, Saves Owner

Artdog911apGiven a chance, dogs are capable of mastering extraordinary skills. Buddy the German Shepherd called 911 when his owner, Joe Stalnaker of Phoenix, had a seizure. Help quickly arrived and thankfully, he survived.

Stalnaker adopted Buddy as a puppy from Paws With A Cause so he could be trained as a Seizure Response Dog. As a dog trainer, I'm always looking for fun, new things to teach my pack of five dogs or my students' dogs. But I'll leave dialing 911 to service dogs only! What tricks can your dog do? Or what trick would you like to teach your dog?

Julia Kamysz Lane

September 16, 2008 in Cool stuff, Current Affairs, Health, Humane, media, Volunteer | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Rotties Survive 11 Days in Sewer

91457I know this was supposed to be a feel-good story, but for me, it brought up more concerns than warm fuzzies.

How did young Rottweilers Trixi and Boscoe end up stuck in a sewer pipe in the first place? Well, these two pups live on site at a construction company -- probably not the safest environment for any animal. Which brings up my next question: are they left there unsupervised to "guard" the property? Seems like it. Owner Tracy Lampignano said they assumed the dogs had been stolen when they went missing. If a dog is inside a home in a residential area, I imagine they are far less appealing to would-be dognappers.

Now I know some dog owners would roll their eyes at seeing my dogs slumbering (and slobbering) on my living room couch, but I had sincerely hoped that our society had moved beyond the "junkyard dog" mentality. Why couldn't Trixi and Boscoe go home with the company owners every night? It would certainly be safer and in my view, more humane.

At the height of the drama, Trixi was found first, but they couldn't find Boscoe. Lampignano told the local paper, "We didn't hear a sound but knew Boscoe had to be down there too. She was in heat and he was following her everywhere."

Yeah, that gasp you heard was from me. Trixi and Boscoe are almost one year old. Why aren't they spayed/neutered? Also -- and I hate to ask -- since they're so close in age, are they siblings? In which case, at least one of them needs to be spayed/neutered NOW.

On the upside, it was refreshing to read about Rottweilers in the paper without a single mention of BSL (Breed Specific Legislation). I just wish the story had been completely free of breed stereotypes.

Julia Kamysz Lane

September 11, 2008 in Current Affairs, Health, Humane, Volunteer | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack