Tag Archives: Facebook

Arthur chose them…and a new life in Sweden

The Swedish members of Team Peak Performance started out as a team of four in a 430-mile adventure race through the Amazon.  By the time they finished the race in Ecuador, they had added a 5th member, a canine named Arthur.

Arthur’s story, including his subsequent relocation to Sweden, has captured the world’s attention.  This is a classic case of a dog choosing its adoptive owner.

It started when Captain Mikael Lindnord threw a stray dog a meatball at a rest break.  A 24-mile rainforest hike, one leg of the race, was about to begin and the stray kept pace with the team.  When the team entered its kayaks for a water part of the race, the stray (now named Arthur) jumped in to swim and stay with them.

“The organisers advised us not to bring Arthur, as it could be unsafe on the water,” explained Mr Lindnord.

“But when we set off in the kayaks, he started swimming after us. It was too heart-breaking and we felt we couldn’t leave him, so we picked him up.  We could hear the people cheer on the shore as we set off.”

Mikael and Arthur during the race Photo: Krister Göransson/Peak Performance

Mikael and Arthur during the race Photo by: Krister Göransson/Peak Performance

Mikael has now adopted Arthur and brought him back to Sweden to become a member of the family.

Arthur and his new family at the airport

Arthur and his new family at the airport

Recognizing that Arthur’s story has touched many who want to help other strays, the team has set up the Arthur Foundation to receive donations.

You can follow Arthur’s progress on the Team’s Facebook page.

Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, Canine Catering Ltd, Christchurch, New Zealand

The world’s smallest dog

Miracle Minny

 

This one really is for the record books – how small do you think a dog can get?

The world’s smallest dog, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, is Miracle Milly.  She’s a Chihuahua who lives in Puerto Rico.

She is only 3.8 inches tall (see photo above for scale).

Since she is a Public Figure, Milly has her own Facebook page and, like many small dogs, her owner likes to dress her up for photos.

Miracle Milly in teacup

Chandi

Chandi book cover

I have just finished reading Chandi:  The Rescue Dog Who Stole a Nation’s Heart by Tina Humphrey.  Chandi is the story of Humphrey’s rescue dog who she trained for Heelwork to Music.  Published in 2012, the book opens when Humphrey meets her first dog, Pepper, in 1994.  Chandi is adopted from a shelter in 1998 and, for a time, Humphrey trains and competes with both dogs in Heelwork to Music and Freestyle competitions.

Tina, who teaches piano and violin, has a natural ear for music and is able to choreograph routines for her dogs that emphasize the stories behind the music.

Chandi is a love story.  It is about the bond that Tina shares with both of her dogs and the devotion she has for both of them.  She is an advocate for a raw diet and natural health care (no wonder I was attracted to the book),  in part inspired by her mother who fought cancer for many years using natural therapies.  (Part of the book tells the story of how Tina suffers the loss of both of her parents, at separate times, with her dogs there as emotional support).

We also share in Tina’s heartache when, in 2007, she and Chandi suffer the loss of Pepper.  Anyone who has had to say goodbye to their beloved dog understands Tina’s pain when it is time for Pepper to be put to sleep.

Chandi and Tina win many competitions in their years together including several trophies at Crufts.  In 2010, after almost 12 years of competing and sharing their lives, they audition for Britain’s Got Talent and go all the way to the finals, ultimately finishing in fourth place.  By then, they are celebrities and enjoy a nationwide tour of the show’s finalists plus other interviews and promotions.  And that’s where the book finishes…on a high note.

On 26 April 2013, Chandi died at the age of 14 years 10 months.  She developed a condition that was thought to be pyometra.  However, during surgery to remove her uterus and spleen, it was discovered that Chandi’s body had many other tumours that could not be removed.   Tina made the heart-breaking decision that it was time for Chandi to go and was there when she was put to sleep on the surgical table.

Today, Tina is training a new puppy named Grace and is blogging about her experiences with her new canine companion.    You can follow them on Facebook.

 And through the wonders of YouTube, here are Tina and Chandi’s performances on Britain’s Got Talent:

Auditions

Semi-Finals

Finals

The canine ambassador at the Fairmont Hotel

At the Fairmont Hotel MacDonald in Edmonton (Canada), you will be greeted by a very special staff member – Smudge the Yellow Labrador!

SmudgeSmudge is a failed guide dog (due to her enthusiastic/over-friendly nature) and so thanks to a working arrangement with the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, Smudge came to work at the hotel.

Guests can book to take Smudge out for a walk and she will visit meetings on request.  Look for her (on her bed, by the concierge desk) when you are visiting.

Smudge also has her own Facebook page and you can follow her activities there.

Here’s a bit more about Smudge:

Managing dental health

Yesterday, Daisy had a dental cleaning at our vet’s.  She didn’t really have dog breath but her annual examination revealed that her teeth weren’t in the best condition.   She didn’t need any extractions, but she had gingivitis in her rear teeth and, as it turns out, signs of receding gums.

Daisy is a senior girl and we absolutely can’t risk having another procedure where she requires anesthesia.

I have really tried to support her mouth health through 2-3 times per week brushing with dog toothpaste and the feeding of dental chews.  She doesn’t tolerate raw bones well – which routinely either over-stimulate her bowels or cause constipation.  (When she shared a kennel with her father once a week at daycare, it was great because she could chew on his cast-offs without these problems.)

Daisy is also rather picky and so she won’t chew on chew toys like the twisted rope chews (I think she believes it’s beneath her).  If food/taste isn’t involved in the chew, she’s just not interested.

So, what’s next for our regime?

Well, the first thing is making brushing of her teeth a daily event.  I’m motivated to do this because I know the consequences of not doing it and luckily, Daisy is used to it.

But I want to do more and preferably in as natural a way as possible.

I’m also going to try homeopathics.  The two that come recommended are fragaria and calc renalis because these  keep tartar soft and more able to be removed through chewing and brushing.  The standard 30C concentrations are what we are going to start with by adding it to her water bowl.  If you can’t source the individual remedies, many of the homeopathic mixtures on the market contain these active ingredients.  In New Zealand, BioPet comes recommended.

I’ve also read that boiled oxtail is a good chew.  So I’m off to find oxtail at the supermarket/butcher.  I’m also hopeful of finding other chews that Daisy will tolerate – I’m going to source a deer antler chew shortly.

Remember, that dental health is essential.  I’ve previously written about this subject in Dog breath is no laughing matter.

Please feel free to share what you do to keep your dog’s teeth in top condition either through this blog or the Canine Catering Facebook page.  (Yes, I know about the raw diet – but Daisy hasn’t tolerated even a managed transition to raw feeding in the past.   I’m not against feeding raw, I just know from my practice that not all dogs are suited to the raw diet for a range of reasons).

If your dog voted for President

The philosopher Immanuel Kant once said, “We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.”  If dogs were allowed to vote in the upcoming US presidential election, I believe that this would be their main criteria for voting.

US President Barack Obama kept his promise to his daughters when he was elected to the US presidency and the family adopted Bo, a Portuguese Water Dog.  Bo currently features in the President’s commemorative photo issued by the Democratic National Committee:

The official photo issued by the Democratic National Committee

In stark contrast is presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s reputation for caring for the family’s dog, Seamus.  Romney placed Seamus into a dog crate on top of the family’s car in 1983 for a long car trip from Boston to Ontario, Canada.  Romney defended his actions by saying that he outfitted the crate with a ‘modified’ windshield.   When Seamus soiled the crate and the rear window of the car, Romney calmly stopped the car and used a hose on Seamus.  (Romney’s team has commended his approach, citing it as an example of his emotion-free crisis management.)  (You can read more about Romney’s treatment of Seamus and others in this Vanity Fair article.)

When interviewed by ABC’s Diane Sawyer, she asked Romney if he would do it again.  He replied, “Certainly not with the attention it’s received.”  (No comment about the appropriateness of his actions, just the attention).

This act of cruelty has been described by Scott Crider as a ‘deal-breaker’ for Romney’s candidacy.  Crider has started the Dogs Against Romney movement which includes a Facebook page.

Supporters can also buy various Dogs Against Romney merchandise from the movement’s website.  For example, your dog can wear a bandana that says “I ride inside” or you can use a coffee mug at the office “Dogs aren’t luggage”

So, who would your dog vote for?  Romney or Obama?

I leave you with the words of Mahatma Gandhi:

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way in which its animals are treated.”


Community, officials at odds over free-roaming dog

Blue the dog doesn’t have a home. And he apparently doesn’t want one. But the blue-eyed Australian cattle dog has $1,800 in savings, a Facebook page and an air-conditioned dog house.

He also has a lawyer, who is working to get him an exemption from local leash laws so he can continue his free-wheeling lifestyle in southern New Mexico’s lakeside community of Elephant Butte, where he was abandoned as a puppy a decade ago.

Read the full story in The Daily Times.