Dog Blog

Wednesday, November 28, 2012


Registered Australian Breeder Abuses Collies

As one who as a child loved watching "Lassie" on TV, I found this video very hard to watch, but it's a must-see for anyone who cares about the humane treatment of animals, especially of our canine companions.  It confirms that there are plenty of rotten registered breeders in the business of perpetuating misery, and not only in the US.  

Do your research.  Take action. Adopt.

Thursday, November 22, 2012


Thanksgiving is done;
stand up if you're able.
Just leave the leftovers
under the table.
(or on it, in this case)
signed, the dogs

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


I confess that I do. When I encounter folks who brag about their purebred dog they got from a breeder, I just want to slap some sense into them.  But my heart swells to the size of the Grinch's in Whoville when someone says they rescued their dog.  Is there any kinder way to find your very best friend?  I think about my most wonderful Beau and how someone didn't even care enough about him to claim him from the dog pound to bring him back home.  I'm sure he was once someone's adorable Christmas puppy before I found him.  

It's hard not to condemn those who insist on buying a dog from a breeder or pet store when there are so doggone many of them abandoned in shelters and rescues that are in dire need of a loving home.  How can they even consider it?  To me, it's like saying you bought a child.  

You had better believe that you are not always getting a well bred dog when you buy a "purebred" dog from a breeder or a pet store, where they are so greedy as to sell dogs for profit.  Most of the time you'll end up with a dog that came from a puppy mill with a costly collection of health and behavior problems due to the cramped, filthy conditions they are raised in.  Those problems may not manifest for a while, usually after you are all in.  There are some reputable breeders, of course, who claim they are in the business of breeding for love of the dogs, but if they were completely honest they'd admit they also love the money and prestige that goes along with the show ring.  I don't think those trophies usually are displayed in the dog house.  

The demand for purebreds persists, and that's why puppy mills and backyard breeders are still profiting from the misery of these unfortunate companion animals.  Here are the reasons you most often hear about why only a purebred will do.  Number 5 is my absolute favorite pet peeve.  Grrrr!

Monday, November 19, 2012


I'm pleased to announce that two of my pastel paintings of dogs will be exhibited in The Adamson Gallery for the upcoming Dog & Cat Art Show, a popular holiday tradition carried forward by Gallery Owner Colleen Adamson from when it was previously hosted at the Skinner Gallery. Barks for Art is to be held December 5, 2012 - January 30, 2013.  Proceeds of sales from the show will be donated to the Placer County SPCA.

   • Preview Reception: Thursday December 6, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
   • Opening Reception: 2nd Saturday December 8, 6:00-9:00 p.m.

I hope you'll stop by during the show dates to enjoy all the art inspired by our fur friends, but The Adamson Gallery is the go-to gallery for animal lovers at any time.  It's a veritable Noah's Ark of animal-related artwork by many well-known artists who clearly love and appreciate our animal brethren.

Sunday, November 18, 2012


When I was at Western Feed & Supply this afternoon, I noticed they sell the Thundershirt for Dog Anxiety. It wasn't terribly expensive and was even 10% off at this store, so I decided to buy one for Beau, who is terrified of thunder and isn't too fond of the neighbors' electric leaf blowers, either.  Their high-pitched whine is unbearable to him and like nails on a blackboard to me. There was a great column in today's Bee about those lousy, rotten leaf blowers and how they make people's and their pets' lives miserable and that they should be outlawed, as they've done in many American cities, including L.A., of all places.  I abhor leaf blowers, which ruin my peaceful garden times and hope they soon will be prohibited in Sacramento, but poor Beau has a hissy fit whenever they start those things up.  I hope the Thundershirt works for him.  I'll keep you posted. 

Saturday, November 17, 2012


                          MY DARLIN' BEAU, Love of my life

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


Lately, I've seen several dog owners come into my usual cafe carrying small dogs in their arms, and to my amazement no one has asked them to leave.  I love seeing dog lovers push the envelope on a stupid CA health law by bringing their best friends inside the cafe with them.  While I will concede that certain dogs, particularly slobbery ones like mine (no one wants drool slung in their coffee cup) could be a problem in a cafe, small, well-behaved dogs carried in their owners' arms should not be of concern to anyone.  The lady I saw today even set her miniature poodle down long enough to put cream and sugar in her coffee.  He didn't pee on the floor, no one got poison dog lips on his bagel, and no one complained.

Personally, I'd much rather see dogs in places of business not usually welcoming to our canine friends than a bunch of ill-mannered, snot-nosed kids.  I think the chances of contracting germs from a child are far greater than from a dog, as was the case with a young boy I encountered recently in an establishment I frequent. His mother was blathering away on her cell phone to a party at the other end about her son's highly contagious skin infection.  I immediately felt my skin start to itch and twitch. Meanwhile, little Johnny was running amock in the store, wallowing on the cloth chairs, touching everything in sight, and spreading his infection everywhere.  I couldn't wait to get out of there! Leave the contagious kid at home. Give me a nice, clean dog in my cafe any time!

Now, I already wrote about this dogs in restaurants subject in my pet column and got all kinds of hate mail from petless people and allergy sufferers, ad nauseum, so please don't bother raking me over the coals again, 'cause I don't care what anyone says.  I want to see more pet-friendly businesses in Sacramento, including the ones that serve food and beverages.  I want people to be able to bring their dogs inside cafes with them, if only briefly while they purchase their drinks, particularly on hot summer days when no dog should ever be left outside in the sun or inside a car to cook.  People who stubbornly insist on bringing their dogs along everywhere with them, regardless of the weather, will at least not be putting their dogs in needless peril because of some anti-Rover rule.  Many pets' lives would be saved if stores could only be persuaded to relax these ridiculous laws that were probably entered on the books in the 1800s when you couldn't bring your horse with you into the saloon or miss the spittoon.  

Monday, November 05, 2012


Peaches and Beau (and Bo) Bark for Barack

Don't forget to vote!

Friday, November 02, 2012


Responsible pet owners make good neighbors.  That's the subject of my latest Pets & Their People column in the November issue of Inside Publications.  I hope you'll pop on over to their new updated site and have a look.

Thursday, November 01, 2012


I just watched a most disturbing report on TV about a woman who discovered a mutilated black cat on Halloween night.  Seeing this sad and terrible news story and thinking how much that innocent creature, perhaps someone's beloved pet, suffered made me very nearly lose my dinner.  

Dying, the cat had managed to crawl to her doorstep.  She had noticed some teens dressed in black who were up to some devilment in a nearby park but couldn't tell exactly what they were doing, I guess, until she found the cat, which had been burned, cut, and God knows what else. She rushed the cat to a vet clinic, but it was already too late. The injuries were so severe the animal couldn't be saved. She remarked that on the way to the vet, even in its agony the cat purred as she stroked it.  Cats also purr when they are in pain, but I hope her gentle touch did give the poor kitty some comfort in its last moments.  This should be a cautionary tale for cat lovers to keep your pets safe indoors, especially if your cat is black and it's Halloween.  

These kinds of hideous acts committed by heartless little thugs should be severely punished, but the punishment never really fits the crime in instances like these. Where were the parents?  Did they have any clue what their teens were doing on Halloween night or even care?  If these kids would do this to a cat, who might their next victim be? Torturing a helpless animal in this way is an indicator of murderous behavior that could next be inflicted upon people. No empathy, no conscience, no soul. Animal abusers are killers in training.  

Involved, responsible parents are the first line of defense in preventing these tragic headlines.  Such unimaginably cruel behavior might be averted if lessons about humane treatment of animals were taught early at home and in school.  Red Rover offers online classes for school teachers or humane educators who are interested in their special Red Rover Reader programs that teach humane lessons to children. The next online workshop begins in January.  

You have to get 'em young to teach children that animal abuse is cruel and unacceptable in civilized society, as ours claims to be.  As a former teacher, I would like youngsters to learn that our animal brethren are sensitive creatures just like us who love and want to be loved, experience similar emotions, feel pain, and have the right to humane treatment from human beings. Perhaps if more children are taught these lessons, future Halloweens will be much kinder for animals.