Aboard Noah's Blog

News, information, and chatter about collectible items with animal themes, as well as some facts, figures and fun related to pets and wildlife.

Location: Mentor, Ohio, United States
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Friday, October 28, 2005

Family finds their lost pet cat across the ocean

APPLETON, Wisconsin — When Emily the cat went missing a month ago, her owners looked for their wandering pet where she had ended up before — the local animal shelter.

But this week they learned Emily sailed to France.

Lesley McElhiney figures her cat went prowling around a paper warehouse near home and ended up in a cargo container that went by ship across the Atlantic Ocean and was trucked to Nancy, a city in northeastern France near the border with Germany.

Employees at a French lamination company found her in the container, checked her tags and called Emily's veterinarian back in the U.S., John Palarski.

"It probably had access to food and water,'' Palarski said. "I doubt if it went three weeks without it. There must have been a lot of mice on the boat. Even if it was in the cargo department, you would assume there was water down there. She had to have something.''

Palarski faxed the cat's vaccination records to French authorities to help remove her from quarantine, but the family is wondering exactly how they will retrieve the pet.

Emily will need a health certificate from France to return home, and she will have to go through quarantine again on entering the United States, Palarski said.

"The only thing we can think right now is buying a plane ticket,'' McElhiney said. "She already cost us some the first time we got her from the humane society. She's getting to be an expensive little thing.''

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Hundreds Back Dog's Fight for Life

By Ben Pindar, Community Newswire
Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom

An injured dog was today getting a second chance at life after an appeal for funds to cover the costs of vital surgery was answered by hundreds of people.

Cambridgeshire animal shelter, Wood Green, launch an urgent appeal for £3,000 to cover the costs of surgery for "Dodger" the dog after he sustained horrific injuries in a road collision.

Within hours of issuing the appeal hundreds of people inundated the Godmanchester rescue centre with cash offers including poetry publishing firm Forward Press who donated the full £3,000.

Dodger, an 19-month-old terrier, has now undergone the life-saving operation and staff at Wood Green expect him to make a full recovery.

Thanks to the flurry of donations Dodger's treatment and aftercare needs have also been met.

To view this complete story, please visit the Community Newswire Website

Do You Have an Animal Disaster Rescue Story?

A new book titled Rescued: Saving Animals from Disaster will honor those who saved the lives of animals in the Hurricanes Katrina and Rita crises, place attention on organizations that regularly bring pets together with human families, and present heartwarming people-pet reunion stories from the hurricane evacuations.

People who would like to be interviewed about animal rescues and reunions or would like to send leads can e-mail angelanimals@aol.com or post mail to Angel Animals Network, POB 26354, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55426. This book is schedule to be released Fall 2006. For more information click RESCUE.

A Dog Salutes a Fallen Soldier for Veteran's Day

Minneapolis, MN (PRWEB) October 27, 2005 -- Charles Patrick Dugan of Del Rio, Texas, a retired U.S. Marine Corps infantryman and survivor of heavy combat in Vietnam, gave his rank and serial number to his muscular Jack Russell terrier by calling him Cpl. Jack Russell Dugan, USMC, 2164539, or "Cpl. J.R." for short. Dugan and the dog often exercised by walking through four local cemeteries.

As it neared Veteran's Day one year, Cpl. J. R. ran off unexpectedly. Dugan found the dog scratching at a neglected grave marker. Brushing the debris away, he was amazed to find that the dog had found one of the only military gravestones in the cemetery. It was inscribed with the dog's same name, Jack A. Russell, Texas, Cpl. Signal Corps. After Dugan swept the tombstone clear of debris, the dog rested on the headstone of his namesake who had died during the Korean War.

Jack A. Russell

Cpl. Dugan says, "A little dog paid honor and respect by bringing new meaning to the belief that no soldier should ever be forgotten." Now, Cpl. Dugan shares details of his remarkable story in the new book "Angel Dogs: Divine Messengers of Love" by Allen and Linda Anderson with a foreword by Willard Scott (New World Library, October 2005).

Dugan's story shows that a dog's loyalty need not be underestimated. Dogs have served in the U.S. military since World War II, detecting landmines and offering companionship and safety to soldiers. In the current Iraq war, stray dogs are befriending military units and individual soldiers. This occurrence has become so prevalent that a movement and Website, militarymascots.org, has been organized to help bring these loyal canine friends home when the soldiers return.

Allen Anderson says, "Cpl. Dugan's story is one of the thousands we've receive that show animals have a way of letting people know that they are never truly forgotten or abandoned."

Take for example another story in the Andersons' collection that demonstrates how the loyalty of dogs sustains people during times of war. Bob Shaw, an award-winning writer and newspaper columnist from Benton, Missouri, writes about Pinkey, a blond cocker spaniel who made her family wonder if she might be able to read. Pinkey was Shaw's constant boyhood pal and the family's "little thief" -- she stole baseballs from a nearby amusement fairground booth, hiding them in her backyard.

After Shaw enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and was sent to Vietnam, Pinkey mourned for the loss of her best friend. When Shaw's first letter home arrived from overseas, the family read it eagerly and left it on the kitchen table. During the night, Pinkey stole the young soldier's letter and curled up in her bed with it tucked under her chin. From that point on, Pinkey kept all of Shaw's letters in her bed and slept with them every night.

In 1996, Allen and Linda Anderson co-founded the Angel Animals Network and its free online "Angel Animals Story of the Week" at www.angelanimals.net. "Angel Dogs" is the latest in an ongoing series of books that contain inspiring stories about courageous and loyal dogs. The book has favorable reviews in "Publisher's Weekly," "Best Friends," and "Foreword" magazines. It is available through bookstores nationwide and at online booksellers.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

World's Tallest Dog is a Great Dane Named Gibson

A 3-year-old Great Dane in Sacramento, Calif., has been named the world's tallest dog by Guinness Book of World Records.

The award-winning dog, named Gibson, stands 7 feet tall when upright, according to the report.

He was officially named the planet's tallest dog Tuesday by officials with Guinness who flew to California from England to see Gibson.

Gibson's owner, Sandy Hall, said she never dreamed Gibson would turn out to be the planet's tallest dog. She said the dog is a gift.

"I've had Danes since 1981," Hall said. "I've never seen anything like this --ever."

Gibson, world's tallest dog

Several neighbors in the county know about the record-holding dog, which dwarfs an average-sized golden retriever.

"I've seen him twice now, and he's a really tall dog," a neighbor said.

Great Dane Figurines

Unusual Pair of Bunnies Born

United Kingdom, http://www.peterboroughtoday.co.uk

Ben and Rosie Reynolds cuddle the newest additions to the family – a distinctive duo of baby bunnies.

The friendly balls of fluff are almost unique from other rabbits because one has only one ear, while the other has none at all.

Ben (10) and his eight-year-old sister were amazed when their pet
rabbit gave birth to the unusual pair in a litter of four.

And the youngsters were so smitten with the rare rabbits that they persuaded their parents, Emma and Andrew, to keep them instead of selling them on.


In fact, they were so excited about the bunnies, they lovingly named them Van Gogh – after the famous artist who chopped off one of his ears -– and Cloth Ears.

Mum Emma (34), from Peakirk, near Peterborough, said: "We couldn't believe it when we saw the two rabbits, they just looked so funny.

"We were planning to find the rabbits a new home, but Rosie and Ben have taken them into their hearts, and there is no way we can let them go now.
"I just thought it was so strange to have two normal rabbits and then these two distinctive rabbits in one litter.

"We thought it might be because the rabbits were different breeds and that might have affected their ears."

The unique pair are the offspring of a lop-eared rabbit and a common domestic bunny, but despite their odd appearance, they seem to be settling into their new surroundings.

Zoe North, the owner and head veterinary surgeon of the hi-tech New Lodge veterinary centre, which offers five-star treatment to poorly pets in Polebrook, near Oundle, was intrigued by the Reynolds' rabbits.

She said: "This is certainly extremely unusual, and not something I have come across before.

"However, genetic mistakes can happen, and I have seen rabbits missing parts of legs, for example.

"It is unlikely that the cross breeding of rabbits would lead to defects like this though, it would be a genetic mix-up in the development of the babies.

"To have two such rabbits in one litter is very strange."

Monday, October 24, 2005

Clergyman enlists animals' services

LONDON, Gulf Daily News

A clergyman is enlisting the help of furry friends to spread the gospel to his flock.

Australian-born Father Peter MacLeod-Miller, 43, regularly calls on the services of a donkey, lambs, goats and alpacas while working in Barrow, Suffolk, according to Sky News website.

He keeps two goats, three lambs, three alpacas, 30 chickens and a donkey in a paddock at his rectory - and takes the animals to church services and uses them when working in schools and making pastoral visits.

"It's something that's just developed over the four years I've been here," said Father MacLeod-Miller, whose last job was in Sydney, Australia.

"Animals are central figures in many Biblical stories. I just find they can help people relax and add interest.

"It's hard to doze off in church when there's a donkey standing in the aisle. People seem to like them."

India Zoo Flooded, Animals are Safe


MYSORE, INDIA: Animals at the century-old Mysore zoo escaped death by the skin of their teeth when a neighbouring lake breached and its water flooded the zoo area on Saturday night. There was no sabbatical on Sunday at Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens.

Thanks to the overflowing Karanji Lake, water gushed into Anjaneya Temple located between the lake and zoo. Eight-foot-wide walls which are a bulwark for the Indian bison enclosure came crashing down. Before the zoo staff could gather its wits, the zoo was flooded.

In no time, water from the bison enclosure cracked the compound abutting the elephant enclosure, reducing the "walkthrough" reptiles' area into a pond.

Sixteen zoo employees battled hardhitting rain and swirling waters to rescue 14 caimans, 11 alligators, seven ghariyals, two saltwater crocodiles, a marsh crocodile and 12 varieties of birds and snakes. "Water level reached 9 feet and the crocodiles were almost washed away in the waters. We've been in water since 2 am and haven't slept a wink," Manjunath, a zoo employee, said.

The enclosures of African black rhino, sambar, mountjack, swamp, rhesus monkey, macaque, spotted and swamp deer and wild dog were flooded. Zoo executive director Manjo Kumar said all species of animals are safe, and the zoo was open for visitors as usual.

The incident is a throwback to 1993 when an overflowing lake had carried 11 crocodiles out of the zoo premises. Manoj Kumar said water flow was affected as Doddakere had been encroached upon.

Recalling the past-midnight emergency operations on Sunday, he said: "At a meeting with the deputy commissioner and corporation commissioner, we prepared a strategy to carve out a passage for flood water."

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Storm Shelter for Pets will not be Used for Hurricane Wilma

North Fort Myers, Florida

Nearly 200 pet owners and their favorite animals will have to find somewhere else to ride out Hurricane Wilma.

After the hurricanes of 2004, county officials had planned to use the Lee Civic Center in North Fort Myers as a storm shelter for people and their pets as long as owners stayed on the premises.

With that in mind, owners of 105 dogs, 42 cats, 18 birds and 193 people had preregistered ahead of Hurricane Wilma.

But the 15,000 square-foot building is only approved to withstand a Category 1 storm, or the winds of a Category 2 storm that moves along the coast without making landfall.

Wilma's Category 4 and 5 winds were not part of the equation. So the center will not be opened as a shelter for pets.

"You're going to have people there as well as animals," said Paul Filla, spokesman for Lee County public safety. "Not that you care any less for pets, but there would be people there, and the building would not be able to withstand a stronger storm."

The county invested thousands of dollars on storm shutters and flooring material for the pets. The question is: Who evacuates for a Category 1 storm and why not find a stronger building during the planning stage?

"Every time a building goes up that can withstand a Category 3 or stronger storm, we are using it for people," Filla said, noting most of those are schools.

He said the weak pet shelter still could be useful for smaller storms and pet owners who abandoned mobile homes to leave low-lying areas along the coast.

The Humane Society of Lee County is making room for lost, abandoned or endangered animals during the storm.

The facility airlifted 49 dogs Thursday. They were taken to Alabama before going on to shelters in Indiana and Pennsylvania, where they will be put up for adoption, shelter director Tracy Jones said.

The shelter has about 50 dogs left, half from Hurricane Katrina that are not well enough to travel.

Moving the other dogs will allow them to take in about 50 more. They also have about 100 cats, with room for another 30.

"We will end up with (more) pets one way or another, regardless of if we get hit hard or someone else gets hit hard," she said.

The building weathered Charley, and staff is preparing for Wilma.

"We are a concrete building," Jones said. "Right now, we are boarding up all of our windows and entryways and making sure everything is secure."

At least for Wilma, the owners of pets will have to make their own arrangements.


Jody Van Cooney of Lee County Red Cross understands the dilemma faced by pet owners but said the Red Cross cannot allow pets into its shelters.

"Too many people are allergic, and all sorts of problems can arise with pets," she said.

She understands it can cause people to stay home in a dangerous storm.

"We know there are a lot of people out there who won't abandon their pets," she said. "We all did see what happened in New Orleans."

Please cast your vote in our poll regarding pets and evacuations

Friday, October 21, 2005

Kidnapped Parrot is Reunited with His Owner a Year Later

By Adrian Butler, Liverpool Echo
United Kingdom

A parrot which was kidnapped a year ago is back with his owner - after living around the corner all along.

Green macaw Billy, from Walton, lived in a house two minutes' walk away after he was stolen and sold on.

His owner, Janet Mooney, 46, said: "I can't believe he was so close all this time."

She added: "He hasn't changed a bit - he hasn't stopped swearing."

Billy was kidnapped from the wall outside his home last November. Neighbours saw a man running away with the feathers of the £1,000 bird sticking out of a coat.

Local children used to visit Billy's perch outside the house to feed him on their way to school.

They made missing posters for the parrot as part of a huge search but, after nearly a year of looking, Janet had given up hope.

Then on Monday, a neighbour saw the 2ft parrot in a new house.

Grandmother of four Janet said: "Someone from a few streets away told me they thought someone had my Billy.

"I didn't waste any time - I went round there straight away.

"They told me they had bought him as a Christmas present."
When Janet got inside the house she immediately recognised her homesick pet.

She said: "He looked made up to see me. I put my hand into the cage and said: 'Give nannie a kiss.'

Billy Green Macaw

"He kissed me and said 'hello', and I took him out of the cage.

"Then I put him straight in the car and drove off."

Now Billy is back in Lauriston Road with Janet and her dog Saffy.

Janet said: "The new owner had said the parrot was very vicious.

"But he was back to his old self straight away. He's a real attention seeker and he has the run of the house.

"He was in a cage all that time, so he's been out in the garden a lot now."

Janet is not taking the matter any further with the people who had Billy, saying she is just glad to have him back.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

You Know You're a Dog Lover When...

  • You have a kiddie wading pool in the yard, but no small children.
  • Lint wheels are on your shopping list every week.
  • You have baby gates permanently installed at strategic places around the house, but no babies.
  • The trash basket is more or less permanently installed in the kitchen sink, to keep the dog out of it while you're at work.
  • You can't see out the passenger side of the windshield because there are nose-prints all over the inside.
  • Poop has become a source of conversation for you and your significant other.
  • You refer to yourselves as Mommy and Daddy.
  • Your dog sleeps with you.
  • You have 32 different names for your dog. Most make no sense, but she understands.
  • Your dog eats cat poop, but you still let her kiss you (but not immediately afterward, of course).
  • You like people who like your dog. You despise people who don't.
  • You carry dog biscuits in your purse or pocket at all times.
  • You talk about your dog the way other people talk about their kid.
  • You sign and send birthday/anniversary/Christmas cards from your dog.
  • You put an extra blanket on the bed so your dog can be comfortable.
  • You'd rather stay home on Saturday night and cuddle your dog than go to the movies with your sweetie.
  • You go to the pet supply store every Saturday because it's one of the very few places that lets you bring your dog inside and your dog loves to go with you.
  • You open your purse, and that big bunch of baggies you use for pick-ups pops out.
  • You get an extra-long hose on your shower-massage just so you can use it to wash your dog in the tub, without making the dog sit hip-deep in water.
  • You don't think it's the least bit strange to stand in the back yard chirping "Meg, pee!" over and over again, while Meg tends to play and forget what she's out there for (but what your neighbors think of your behavior is yet another story).
  • You and the dog come down with something like flu on the same day. Your dog sees the vet while you settle for an over-the-counter remedy from the drugstore.
  • Your dog is getting old and arthritic, so you go buy lumber and build her a small staircase so she can climb onto the bed by herself.
  • Your license plate or license plate frame mentions your dog.
  • You match your furniture/carpet/clothes to your dog.
  • You have your dog's picture on your office desk (but no one else's).
  • You lecture people on responsible dog ownership every chance you get.
  • You hang around the dog section of your local bookstore.
  • You skip breakfast so you can walk your dog in the morning before work.
  • You are the only idiot walking in the pouring rain because your dog needs her walk.
  • You don't go to happy hours with co-workers any more because you need to go home and see your dog.
  • Your parents refer to your pet as their grand-dog.
  • Your friend's dog acts as Best Dog at your wedding.
  • Your weekend activities are planned around taking your dog for a hike (both days).
  • You keep an extra water dish in your second-floor bedroom, in case your dog gets thirsty at night (after all, her other dish is way down on the first floor)
  • Your freezer contains more dog bones than anything else.
  • You never completely finish a piece of steak or chicken (so your dog gets a taste, too).
  • You shovel a zigzag path in the back yard snow so your dog can reach all her favorite spots.
  • You avoid vacuuming the house as long as possible because your dog is afraid of the vacuum cleaner.
  • You keep eating even after finding a dog hair in your pasta.
  • You make popcorn just to play catch with your dog.
  • You carry pictures of your dog in your wallet instead of pictures of your parents, siblings, significant other, or anyone else remotely human.
  • Your dog is the star of your website!

Anti-Dangerous Dog Bill Author was Attacked by His Own Dog

Albuquerque, N.M. (AP) --

The author of a new state law that allows felony charges against owners of dangerous dogs was hospitalized over the weekend after his own dog attacked him.

Bob Schwartz, who also is Gov. Bill Richardson's crime adviser, was hospitalized at University of New Mexico Hospital on Sunday night with bites on both his arms, said Pahl Shipley, a spokesman for the governor.

A hospital spokeswoman declined to release Schwartz's condition, but Shipley said Schwartz is "going to be fine."

Schwartz has three dogs registered with the city: a boxer and two English bulldogs, said Denise Wilcox, who oversees Albuquerque's animal care centers.

Schwartz was instrumental in getting a law passed during this year's regular legislative session that would allow felony charges to be filed against owners of dogs deemed dangerous or potentially dangerous and that seriously injure or kill another animal or person.

The law was designed to make dog owners accountable, said Sen. Sue Wilson Beffort, who worked with Schwartz to pass the bill.

"But I guess when it happens in your own family, that's another story," she said. "That's tragic."

Wilcox said Sunday her office had not received a bite report from University hospital, which is required when a dog bite leads to medical attention.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Pampering Their Pets or Themselves?

If you are fed up with pets that look scruffy, dirty or straggly, why not spruce them up with fur highlights, add a party look by painting their nails or spray them with their own special eau de toilette?

It is all possible thanks to 465 sometimes bizarre beauty products launched so far this year for the world's pampered pets.

"For many pet owners, their animals are as loved and pampered as their own children, and deserve to be groomed and cared for with the best products," consumer trends organisation Mintel's David Jago said.

"On an extreme level, we have even seen cosmetic products that allow pets to imitate their owner's beauty regimes."

Style-conscious cats and dogs can now be treated to nail polishes - available in a range of colours from scarlet to gloss - while they can also have their fur dyed gold, orange or pink.

For overweight or stressed-out animals, there are numerous weight control supplements, relaxation sprays and "chill" pills.

"Pets have for some time been seen as a type of fashion accessory, particularly amongst the celebrity set, with the likes of Paris Hilton, Uma Thurman and Geri Halliwell rarely seen without their dog in a bag," Mr Jago said.

"These new products seem to be tapping into this trend and allowing owners to colour-coordinate their look with that of their pets."

Of course though, once your pooch has been spruced up it could start attracting unwanted attention.

But do not worry - a firm in the Netherlands has produced "No Love Spray" which promises to neutralise the sexual scent of female dogs.

Cat Suspected of Eating Elderly Woman's Toes

Shukan Bunshun Oct. edition. It was a terrifying incident that has all manner of people getting toey, but investigators aren't pussy footing around when it comes to the case of a cat that supposedly chewed off and ate an old woman's toes. It looks like it all may result in curiosity killing the cat, though, according to Shukan Bunshun.

The case was discovered in the early hours of Oct. 6 when one of the elderly patients in a Saitama nursing home buzzed for help.

A home worker raced to answer the call, entering the two-person room to find an 88-year-old woman lying on the bed, her right foot a bloody mess and its toes missing. Some reports say that a cat's bloody pawprints were spotted in the room, leading to an open window. A cat immediately became the prime suspect.

"The buzzer call for help was made by the injured woman's roommate. The worker who discovered the woman called for an ambulance and she was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment. All five toes on her right foot had been chewed off completely. There was also a really deep scratch on her right leg. The chewed off toes haven't been found," a reporter for a national daily tells Shukan Bunshun. "The victim is bedridden and has senile dementia. She can't talk, either, so it was impossible for her to scream for help."

On the afternoon of the same day the woman was found, nursing home workers found the apparent culprit. A big fat cat known to saunter around the home. It even had bloodstains all around its mouth. Officials grabbed the feline felon and handed it over to public health authorities. At that stage, it seemed as though the case was one of, well, having the cat in the bag. Home officials were purring.

Since then, however, animal experts have come out in defense of the pitiful pussy.

"I've been a vet for 40 years, but I've never heard of a single case where a cat has chewed off a person's toes. I could believe if it we were talking about a dog, because dogs could bit through the bones, but cats have sharp teeth that hurt when they bite, but make it physically impossible to chew through bone," Tokio Tonouchi, head of the Tonouchi Veterinary Clinic, tells Shukan Bunshun. "Even the way dogs and cats eat meat is different. Dogs chew it, but a cat is more likely to lick it for a long time until it wears down. Even if the cat were to have done what people are saying it has, there is no way it would ever eat the bones, too. If the cat has done it, you'd also be able to tell from the bite marks left on the foot."

Hirokazu Tsuji, head of the Japan Veterinary Association, agrees.

"It's impossible. It's totally unthinkable that a cat would be able to bite through human bones. It's probably some other form of carnivore," he says.

Sengoku Kasai, a Tokyo vet with 33 years experience, also dismisses claims that the cat chewed off and ate the old woman's toes.

"Cats get bored really easily. There's no way it could have chewed off all five toes, even if it was close to starvation," he says. "To have chewed them off, it would have had to have chomping away for ages. Your average cat's attention span will absolutely not hold for that long."

Though all the evidence may point to the puss, expert advice suggests otherwise. Fortunately, authorities have shed their regular reluctance to speak publicly about crimes, perhaps in an attempt to show that the cat has not got their tongues.

"We've had the cat here since Oct. 7," an official from the Kasukabe Branch of the Saitama Prefectural Animal Guidance Center says. "Normally, we'd put strays down if nobody claims them after three days here. The police have asked us to hold on to this cat for the time being, though."

Officers from the Kazo Police Station have been assigned to investigate the case. They're not ruling anything out at this stage.

"It was definitely done by some sort of animal" a police spokesman tells Shukan Bunshun. "We don't know whether it was the cat or not, though." (By Ryann Connell)

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Amazon Parrot Found after Six Days

Shropshire Star, United Kingdom

Frankie went missing from his Aqueduct home and ended up in a barn on a farm in Red Hill earlier this week.

A parrot that hid out in a Telford farm for six days got into a flap when he was discovered flying through a piece of machinery.


Brandan Mills and
Karen Johnson with
their parrot Frankie

Janet Jones's son found the bird and the family looked after him, feeding him peanuts and apples, before making contact with his owners, Karen Johnson and Brandan Mills, through an advert in the Shropshire Star.

Mrs Jones said: "It was up in the trees in the yard. My son James actually caught him because he had slept in the barn and he came down the machinery that takes the bales up. He managed to capture him in a bucket and then he brought him to the house.

"We fed him up and he looked much, much better. We gave him peanuts and apples and that brought him through."

Purchase Amazon Parrot-Themed Gifts

Match the Animals - Noah's Ark Game

Here's a fun Noah's Ark game:

Noah's Ark game

Friday, October 14, 2005

The Dog's Dictionary

LEASH: A strap which attaches to your collar, enabling you to lead your person where you want him/her to go.

DOG BED: any soft, clean surface, such as the white bedspread in the guest room or the newly upholstered couch in the living room.

DROOL: Is what you do when your persons have food and you don't. To do this properly you must sit as close as you can and look sad and let the drool fall to the floor or better yet, on their laps.

SNIFF: A social custom to use when you greet other dogs. Place you nose as close as you can to the other dog's rear end and inhale deeply, repeat several times, or until your person makes you stop.

GARBAGE CAN: A container which your neighbors put out once a week to test your ingenuity. You must stand on your hind legs and try to push the lid off with your nose. If you do it right you are rewarded with margarine wrappers to shred, beef bones to consume and moldy crusts of bread.

BICYCLES: Two-wheeled exercise machines, invented for dogs to control body fat. To get maximum aerobic benefit, you must hide behind a bush and dash out, bark loudly and run along side for a few yards; the person then swerves and falls into the bushes, and you prance away.

DEAFNESS: This is a malady which affects dogs when their person want them in and they want to stay out. Symptoms include staring blankly at the person, then running in the opposite direction, or lying down.

THUNDER: This is a signal that the world is coming to an end. Humans remain amazingly calm during thunderstorms, so it is necessary to warn them of the danger by trembling uncontrollably, panting, rolling your eyes wildly, and following at their heels.

WASTEBASKET: This is a dog toy filled with paper, envelopes, and old candy wrapper. When you get bored, turn over the basket and strew the papers all over the house until your person comes home.

SOFAS: Are to dogs like napkins are to people. After eating it is polite to run up and down the front of the sofa and wipe your whiskers clean.

BATH: This is a process by which the humans drench the floor, walls and themselves. You can help by shaking vigorously and frequently.

LOVE: Is a feeling of intense affection, given freely and without restriction. The best way you can show your love in return is to wag your tail. If you're lucky, a human will love you in return.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Rare Bird Disease Proves Deadly

Toledo, Ohio - http://abclocal.go.com/wtvg

A little girl loses her life to a rare strain of disease brought into the home by a pet bird purchased on street corner.

Avian flu is one of several known illnesses carried by birds. One local woman says her daughter died of a bacteria infection rhat she caught from the family pet.
"Parrot fever" is an extremely rare form of bacterial pneumonia. So rare, in fact, doctors did not diagnose one girl with "parrot fever" until it was too late. Her mother says, "They couldn t figure out for a long time what was wrong with her. They knew it was pneumonia of some sort; they just couldn't figure out what."

Marie Devers keeps photographs of her daughter, Tashia, close by. They're reminders of a young Toledo girl who died of an extremely rare bird disease. In 1991, Tashia was four years old. Devers says her daughter came down with a cold that got worse and worse and eventually got the best of her. The coroner, according to Devers, identified cause of death as "avian acquired chlamydial pneumonia." It's a bacterial infection otherwise known as "parrot fever," transmitted from birds.

"Birds migrate and they move around a lot and they're outsid all the time." Dr. Bob Esplin of Sylvania veterinary hospital says you can lump parrot fever in with other strange diseases carried by birds, such as avian flu and West Nile virus. The difference is that parrot fever is a bacterial infection, not a virus. It's also treatable if properly diagnosed. Esplin says, "If you know the source of the bird. If you know where it came from. If it came from a healthy breeder, then there's not as much of a problem. If you don't know the source of the bird, then there may be more of a problem on the transmission of any of these diseases."

That's where Devers says she made a deadly mistake. She had bought a cockatiel off a Toledo-area street corner. Since her daughter's death, Devers says she has never brought another bird into her house.

Keep in mind, parrot fever is so rare, the Centers for Disease Control recorded around 800 cases over a ten-year period. It's also seldom fatal. A bird with parrot fever would act like it had a flu and even the bird can get a simple test and treatment.

Food Additive Potentially Deadly To Dogs

If you've got a pet around the house, you may feed them the same things you eat.

But the ingredients of some human food could possibly kill man's best friend.

Xylitol is one of those unusual chemicals you may find listed under ingredients on a food item and wonder what it is.

A bulletin from the Veterinary Medical Association issued one year ago warns that Xylitol could cause life-threatening problems for dogs. Consumed in large quantities, Xylitol may produce a sudden drop in a dog's blood-sugar levels.

Xylitol looks and tastes just like sugar. It's being used in more and more sugar-free foods, but does not affect humans the way it affects dogs.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Your dog can get you a date!

London October 12, 2005, http://news.webindia123.com

If you are one of those 'losers' who just can't seem to get a date, try getting a pet, and Voila! love will bloom like never before, while you walk your pets together.

Singletons in Germany are using their pets to help them get a date after a new dating agency dubbed Date-a-Dog was set up.

Germans are now using their four-legged friends to meet a partner under the motto "a date on all fours", reports Ananova.

The online dating agency, sponsored by dog food makers Pedigree, allows dog owners to post pictures of their pet pooches alongside a description of who they are.

They can then get in touch with someone from the same area and arrange to walk their dogs together.

And for those who do not own a dog but would like to date still, the website offers dogs for rent. (ANI)

Find a dog figurine

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Suspect caught by his own dog

Source: http://www.ananova.com

A criminal who gave police the slip when they turned up to arrest him was caught after cops used his own dog to sniff out his hiding place.

Police from Hannover in Germany came to arrest the 22-year-old man over allegations of involvement in a series of burglaries.

But he fled out the back door and hid in the neighbours' garden as police with a search warrant came in the front door.

But the man left behind his American Staffordshire Bull Terrier named Lumpi, and quick thinking police gave the dog the order to seek his owner out.

The dog sped into the next door garden and stood wagging its tail near the place where its owner was hiding in the bushes.

The man is now in custody, while Lumpi was handed over to the man's relatives to look after.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Keeping your pets safe during October

Halloween is traditionally full of candy, costumes and trick-or-treating for children and their families, but many people are unaware of the potential dangers pets face throughout the month of October. While many people like to include their pets in the festivities, Halloween is one holiday that can threaten the safety,and possibly life, of family friends. From ingesting toxic food, candywrappers or decorations, being traumatized by sudden noises, to exposure or harmful pranks, owners are encouraged to be aware of how their pet's safety could be at risk.

"Candy, especially chocolate, can be most harmful for dogs," said Todd Tams, DVM, DACVIM, Vice President and Chief Medical Officer for VCA Animal Hospitals. "Even small amounts of theobromine, the key ingredient in chocolate, can quickly induce vomiting, choking, diarrhea, damage to internal organs, and potentially lead to death. If your pet is exhibiting some unusual symptoms, and you suspect that they may have ingested chocolate, the best course of action is to take them immediately to your local veterinarian for prompt care," he added.

Even the smallest amounts of chocolate, depending on the size of the dog, can be extremely harmful. Other candies, not just chocolate, should be kept out of a pet's reach. Wooden sticks from caramel apples if chewed and swallowed, can cause serious damage to internal organs, and gum and other chewy candy can cause pets to choke.

As the witches, ghouls and goblins of the neighborhood approach the front door, many pets can experience an increase in stress levels from the commotion and loud noises. A pet can perceive aggression by excited trick-or-treaters, which could potentially lead to lashing out or biting of strangers. Masks and costumes are not easily recognizable and many pets have been known to become protective and aggressive when surprised or scared by unusual and threatening behavior.

Although it can be tempting to take a pet along on Halloween, pets should not accompany families or children on trick-or-treating excursions because they can become easily frightened, harassed, injured, stolen and even killed. Black cats, especially, should bekept indoors throughout the month of October, as they are often victims of pranks that are not always harmless.

Other ways of celebrating the holiday should be taken into consideration if pets are around. Burning candles from jack-o-lanterns spark curiosity to many animals and serious burns, or even a fire could occur if within a pet's reach. Decorations such as faux spiderwebs and electrically wired lights can cause serious risks if found. Additionally, as cute as they are, pet costumes may include hazardous materials if swallowed by our four-legged friends. Many of them contain rubber bands, string or ribbon and pieces of plastic that are not easily digestible, causing intestinal damage.

"To prevent injuries or trauma during holiday traditions for pets, owners should implement simple safety guidelines," explained Tams. "Placing candy and trick-or-treat bags out of reach will ensure pets aren't digesting toxic foods. Keeping pets safe and secure in a comfortable, familiar room while passing out candy is the best way to avoid an unwelcome incident.

"Additionally, pets are much better off at home during Halloween outings, preventing unnecessary fright and the potential for pranks. Ensuring decorations and burning candles are strictly out of reach will also keep pets healthy, safe and happy," he added.

VCA Antech, Inc. (Nasdaq:WOOF), operates the largest network of freestanding, full-service animal hospitals and diagnostic laboratories across the country and employs more than 1,400 qualified veterinarians at more than 375 animal hospitals in 38 states. VCA Animal Hospitals offer a full range of general medical and surgical services for companion animals, as well as specialized treatments including oncology, ophthalmology, cardiology and neurology. Dedicated to the provision of compassionate and comprehensive veterinary care, VCA also provides advanced diagnostic services.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Audi Donates Car in Fight to Save Cheetahs

MENDHAM, NJ — Old Mill Road resident Susan Babson is so serious about saving the endangered cheetahs that she is taking her conservation campaign on the road across the country.

The cheetah, the big cat known for its speed and stealth, is endangered by African farmers who kill the animals to protect their livestock. Conservationists say the cheetah could become extinct in 20 years.

As lands near the cheetah habitat become developed, staying in the wild has become difficult, experts said. About 12,000 wild cheetahs live in Africa today, down from 100,000 in 1900, said Babson.

Babson, a trustee for the Cheetah Conservation Fund, said Audi of America on Main Street has donated a red coupe, painted by New York artist Lynn Chase.

Babson is driving the donated car across the country to raise awareness and money to save the cheetahs.

The red coupe sports a leaping cheetah on its door and a black and rust border of cheetah spots across the chassis.

Babson said on Friday, Sept. 30, that the tour began Saturday, Oct. 1 at the Doris Duke estate in Hillsborough with a fundraising party. The tour will go through Columbus and Cincinnati, Ohio, New York, Philadelphia, Middleburg, Va., Miami, Fla, Atlanta, Ga., Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas, Scottsdale, Ariz., San Francisco and Los Angeles, Calif.

Marker’s approach to conservation is unusual. Marker said cheetahs should co-exist with people. The credo is: “We can live together.”

She wants to teach innovative techniques, such as educating farmers on how to train dogs to guard wildlife against cheetahs. Other incentives to conserve wild cheetahs include endorsing “cheetah friendly” beef that is certified by the Conservancy Association of Namibia. Cheetah friendly beef is raised by ranchers who agree not to kill cheetahs.

Two thirds of the populations of cheetah in 28 countries will grow extinct unless people understand how to co-exist with the animal, according to the Cheetah Conservation Fund website.

“I want people to have years of understanding and knowledge about the cheetah instead of just thinking the animal needs to be eliminated. The cheetah’s problem is humans. In the last 100 years, humans have reduced the population,” Marker said.

Inventor of Fake Dog Testicles wins Ig Nobel Prize

The Associated Press
Thursday, October 6, 2005

BOSTON -- Gregg Miller mortgaged his home and maxed out his credit cards to mass produce his invention _ prosthetic testicles for neutered dogs.

What started 10 years ago with an experiment on an unwitting Rottweiler named Max has turned into a thriving mail-order business. And on Thursday night Miller's efforts earned him a dubious yet strangely coveted honor: the Ig Nobel Prize for medicine.

"Considering my parents thought I was an idiot when I was a kid, this is a great honor," he said. "I wish they were alive to see it."

The Ig Nobels, given at Harvard University by Annals of Improbable Research magazine, celebrate the humorous, creative and odd side of science.

Miller has sold more than 150,000 of his Neuticles, more than doubling his $500,000 investment. The silicone implants come in different sizes, shapes, weights and degrees of firmness.

The product's Web site says Neuticles allow a pet "to retain his natural look" and "self esteem."

Although the Ig Nobels are not exactly prestigious, many recipients are, like Miller, happy to win.

"Most scientists _ no matter what they're doing, good or bad _ never get any attention at all," said Marc Abrahams, editor of the Annals of Improbable Research.

Some, like Benjamin Smith of the University of Adelaide in Australia, who won the biology prize, actually nominated their own work. "I've been a fan of the Ig Nobels for a while," he said.

Smith's team studied and catalogued different scents emitted by more than 100 species of frogs under stress. Some smelled like cashews, while others smelled like licorice, mint or rotting fish.

He recalled getting strange looks when he'd show up at zoos asking to smell the frogs. "I've been turned away at the gate," he said.

This year's other Ig Nobel winners include:

_ PHYSICS: Since 1927, researchers at the University of Queensland in Australia have been tracking a glob of congealed black tar as it drips through a funnel _ at a rate of one drop every nine years.

_ PEACE: Two researchers at Newcastle University in England monitored the brain activity of locusts as they watched clips from the movie "Star Wars."

_ CHEMISTRY: An experiment at the University of Minnesota was designed to prove whether people can swim faster or slower in syrup than in water.

The Ig Nobel for literature went to the Nigerians who introduced millions of e-mail users to a "cast of rich characters ... each of whom requires just a small amount of expense money so as to obtain access to the great wealth to which they are entitled."

Thursday, October 06, 2005

New “World's Ugliest Dog” Picture Contest

New contest hosted by DogExplorer.com

Contestants must be registered users to enter the “World's Ugliest Dog” Picture competition. While DogExplorer.com knows there are no truly ugly dogs, some have a certain, um, well, kisser, that appeals most to their human mom's and dad's.

Entering the contest, registering on the site, viewing and voting on the picture entrants are all completely free!

DogExplorer.com and its readers are waiting to see your beloved canine companions, so bring those hairy, bald, smushed, droopy, wet, sloppy, entirely lovable pooch faces our way. The winner, selected by votes entered by registered users on DogExplorer.com, gets a $25.00 gift certificate for pet supplies.

And bragging rights to the title of “parents” of the “World's Ugliest Dog.” Although they may want to keep that one to themselves.

The contest is open to entrants and voting from October 6, 2005, through November 15, 2005. Complete contest rules are posted on DogExplorer.com.

Python Tries to Eat Alligator, Explodes

Wednesday, October 05, 2005
Associated Press, FOXNews.com

MIAMI, Fla. — Alligators have clashed with nonnative pythons before in Everglades National Park. But when a 6-foot gator tangled with a 13-foot python recently, the result wasn't pretty.

The snake apparently tried to swallow the gator whole — and then exploded. Scientists stumbled upon the gory remains last week.

The species have battled with increasing frequency — scientists have documented four encounters in the last three years. The encroachment of Burmese pythons into the Everglades could threaten an $8 billion restoration project and endanger smaller species, said Frank Mazzotti, a University of Florida wildlife professor.

The gators have had to share their territory with a python population that has swelled over the past 20 years after owners dropped off pythons they no longer wanted in the Everglades. The Asian snakes have thrived in the wet, hot climate.

"Encounters like that are almost never seen in the wild. ... And we here are, it's happened for the fourth time," Mazzotti said. In the other cases, the alligator won or the battle was an apparent draw.

"They were probably evenly matched in size," Mazzotti said of the latest battle. "If the python got a good grip on the alligator before the alligator got a good grip on him, he could win."

Python with alligator sticking out of it

Sept. 26: The carcass of a six-foot American alligator is shown protruding from the mid-section of a 13-foot Burmese python.

While the gator may have been injured before the battle began — wounds were found on it that apparently were not caused by python bites — Mazzotti believes it was alive when the battle began. And it may have clawed at the python's stomach as the snake tried to digest it, leading to the blow up.

The python was found with the gator's hindquarters protruding from its midsection. Its stomach still surrounded the alligator's head, shoulders, and forelimbs. The remains were discovered and photographed Sept. 26 by helicopter pilot and wildlife researcher Michael Barron.

The incident has alerted biologists to new potential dangers from Burmese pythons in the Everglades.

"Clearly, if they can kill an alligator they can kill other species," Mazzotti said. "There had been some hope that alligators can control Burmese pythons. ... This indicates to me it's going to be an even draw. Sometimes alligators are going to win and sometimes the python will win.

"It means nothing in the Everglades is safe from pythons, a top down predator," Mazzotti said.

Not only can the python kill other reptiles, the snakes will also eat otters, squirrels, endangered woodstorks and sparrows.

While there are thousands of alligators in the Everglades, Joe Wasilewski, a wildlife biologist and crocodile tracker, said its unknown how many pythons there are.

"We need to set traps and do a proper survey," of the snakes, he said. At least 150 have been captured in the last two years.

The problem arises when people buy pets they are not prepared to care for.

"People will buy these tiny little snakes and if you do everything right, they're six-feet tall in one year. They lose their appeal, or the owner becomes afraid of it. There's no zoo or attraction that will take it," so they release the snakes into the Everglades.

A reproducing snake can have as many as 100 hatchlings, which explains why the snake population has soared, Wasilewski said.

The Burmese snake problem is just part of a larger issue of nonnative animal populations in South Florida, he said. So many iguanas have been discarded in the region that they are gobbling tropical flowers and causing problems for botanists, Wasilewski said.

A 10- or 20-foot python is also large enough to pose a risk to an unwary human, especially a small child, he added.

"I don't think this is an imminent threat. This is not a 'Be afraid, be very afraid situation.'"



Pet owners who let animals pile on the pounds could face heavy fines under new laws. Owners who allow dogs and cats to get so fat that they are in distress could be fined £5000.

And neglecting or mistreating pets could result in fines of up to £20,000 or up to a year in jail.

The tough new rules, unveiled today, are part of the Animal Health and Welfare Bill.

It gives new powers to animal protection officers, making it easier to prosecute those who abuse or neglect their animals.

The new laws place a "duty of care" on owners, which lets protection officers take action early rather than having to wait until a complaint is made and animals are actually suffering.

Leonara Merry, of the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, said: "At one end, you have animal fighting and deliberate acts of cruelty.

"At the other is day-to-day neglect, which at present it is difficult to do anything about."

The bill raises the age for buying animals from 12 to 16 and bans giving creatures such as goldfish in plastic bags as prizes.

It also tightens rules on animal fighting and outlaws mutilations such as tail-docking for cosmetic purposes.

Buy a fat plush animal here

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Should Hurricane Evacuees Leave Their Pets or Take Them?

Noah's Animal Figurines is conducting an online poll with this

Should hurricane victims be permitted to take their pets with them?

You are invited to vote at:


Honda Unveils Dog-Friendly Car

Honda has designed a dog-friendly car to keep man’s best friend happy on the road.

The WOW Concept, which stands for “wonderful open-hearted wagon” shown to journalists recently, is an exhibition model by the Japanese manufacturer with no plans for commercial sale. It will be exhibited at the Tokyo motor show later this month.

Dog-friendly Honda

A special crate for dogs in the glove apartment allows owners to interact with their pets while driving. A bigger crate pops up from the floor in the back seat area and can be folded back into the floor when it is not needed. For even bigger dogs, just buckle them up with a special seat belt to the floor.

The big danger for pets riding along in cars is that they get thrown out during a crash. About a fifth of Japanese households have a dog, and demand is growing for cars that cater for man’s best friend, according to Honda.

Dog-friendly Honda

The WOW comes with removable, washable, roll-out flooring and has wide sliding doors to keep dogs happy.

“We created this vehicle from the point of view of a dog, but it turned out to be a gentler vehicle for the elderly, children and other family members,” said Honda designer Katsuhito Nakamura.

Dog-friendly Honda

Bless Your Pets Through The Internet

Greensboro, NC -- Dozens of Piedmont pets got a special blessing Monday Night in Greensboro.

October 4 is the feast of St. Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals.

In his honor, the priests at Our Lady Of Grace Catholic Church on West Market Street blessed animals of all shapes, colors and sizes.

If you missed the blessing, it's not too late to get your pet blessed.

You can actually send an "e-blessing" to your animal friends.

Visit www.americancatholic.org/Features/Francis/default.asp for more information.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Lucky Lab Reunited with Rescuer

Chicago October 04, 2005

A National Guardsman was reunited with a puppy he encountered three weeks ago while rescuing survivors form New Orleans' floodwaters.

The whimpers of the black Labrador retriever-mix caught the ears of Staff Sgt. Jeff Brinley, who grabbed the 2-month-old dog from a flooded home and later scrawled his name and phone number on a piece of cardboard, tying it to the pup he named Lucky, the Chicago Tribune reported.

Brinley went home to Columbus, Ohio, but hoped to see the dog again.

Lucky also traveled northward, ending up in the care of PAWS Chicago, a group dedicated to saving pets.

After he was contacted by PAWS to tell him that Lucky was safe and healthy, Brinley and his wife came to Chicago on Sunday to appear at the PAWS run/walk fundraiser.

Brinley and Lucky were reunited and made their public debut at the fundraising event.

Brinley's National Guard unit, the Ohio-based 1-148th Infantry Battalion, escorted dozens of people to the city's Convention Center, and along the way, pulled about 60 four-legged victims from the floodwaters.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

African Grey Parrot's Phone Immitation Saves Him


Joe and Bettye Crow have plenty of parrot tales about their African grey variety Mickey and their friends' parrots.

Crows and parrots usually aren't the best of friends.

But when Bettye Crow gets in the shower, Mickey goes with her. When Joe Crow naps in his recliner, Mickey sits on his stomach or at his shoulder.

When it's time for dinner, the table is set for three. The African grey parrot gets his own plate of whatever they are eating, and he especially likes creamed potatoes and shrimp.

And when Mickey, frightened by dogs, flew out the door and was missing for two days, he made the prayer list at Friendship Baptist Church near Danville.

Mickey, African Grey

"It rained and rained and we hunted him, and I had the ladies at our church praying that we'd find him," said Bettye. "I cried all the time he was out. I was afraid we'd never get him back."

But his adeptness at mimicking a ringing telephone saved him. Mickey had learned to copy the sound of a phone ringing and then the answer, such as "Hello? He's not here. Goodbye." Mickey once lived in an office for a time, until the clerks said he had to go, because they couldn't tell whether the telephone was ringing or Mickey was ringing.

"I was sitting on the porch and heard a phone ringing, so I came inside and asked Bettye if that was our telephone," recalled Joe, but it wasn't. So he knew Mickey was "out there somewhere," and they found him in a tree and enticed him home with carrots, which the parrot loves.

Mickey, African Grey

Like a treasured grandchild, Mickey has the run of the house, and the Danville couple keep a sponge and cleaner handy to lovingly clean up his spills and messes.

Mickey gets a shot glass of decaf tea with his dinner plate. One day when she prepared boiled shrimp for dinner, she gave him a bite, "but he decided to reach over on my plate and get him a whole shrimp. The only thing he doesn't like is oysters."

They know one couple who take their parrot camping. They took him to the vet to get his wings clipped for safety, and he said, "Oh, hell."

Other friends took their parrot to the vet to see why it kept coughing and sneezing. "The vet said he's not sick. He's just mimicking you," Bettye said.

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