I just found this very short item on the San Francisco Chronicle website. A photo of a heavily tattooed man, his baby and his dog….
Photo: Patty Snijders
The man is Ari Sonnenberg with his daughter, Nila Louise Sonnenberg, born April 1, 2015, and his Belgian Malinois dog, Sigmund Freud (also known as Siggy).
Patty Snijders (Ari’s wife) says: “The dog has helped both Ari and me tremendously. He’s made our marriage stronger and prepared us for parenthood in many ways.”
A simple photograph and a lovely sentiment. Siggy sounds very special and his presence has clearly been a help to the couple.
The body of knowledge about the value of dogs for our physical and mental health continues to grow, with research and study and stories like those of Siggy and his owners.
Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, Canine Catering Ltd, Christchurch, New Zealand
Meet the special dogs guarding The White House in Washington DC…
Secret Service K-9 Hurricane – black Belgian Malinois, left, and Jordan – black/tan Belgian Malinois. (Courtesy of U.S. Secret Service)
Secret Service guard dogs are in spotlight after latest White House fence jumping
I have just finished reading the June 2014 issue of National Geographic. As you can see, the feature story is about the military dogs and the magazine has done a really wonderful job depicting the lives of the soldiers and their bomb detecting dogs.
- at the height of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the US military had a force of approximately 2,500 working dogs
- MWDs is the abbreviation for Military Working Dogs
- A dog’s sense of smell is up to 100,000 times more acute than a human’s
- The Belgian Malinois has been particularly successful in Iraq and Afthanistan because it can withstand the hot temperatures
News broke this week that the Town of Vaughn, New Mexico has only one qualified police officer on staff. And he’s a dog.
The town’s human police chief resigned after it was found that he was not allowed to carry a gun because he’s a convicted felon with a large outstanding sum in child support. The only other human officer was convicted in 2010 of battery, leaving him unable to carry a gun or make arrests.
That leaves Nikka, who was purchased for the sum of $10,000 to sniff out drugs (drug traffickers work in the area because of its remoteness).
There’s only about 500 residents in the town and no one seems bothered that their only sworn officer is a canine. Given the character deficiencies of the town’s human officers, some would say that Nikka is an improvement!
Source: The Times
Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, The Balanced Dog, Christchurch, New Zealand
The American Kennel Club has marked the importance of working dogs by naming the top 5 detection jobs which are performed by dogs. These jobs are:
- Bed bug sniffing (best performed by breeds such as Beagles, Labrador Retrievers and Belgian Malinois)
- Search and rescue – tracking missing persons, disaster rescue, etc. (many mixed breeds perform well in this category – just ask the NZ USAR team!) Also performed by Bloodhounds, Labrador and Golden Retrievers and German Shepherds
- Explosives detection (the AKC says that Belgian Malinois, German Shepherds and Vizsla do well in this category)
- Cancer detection (Labrador Retrievers – again!)
- Allergy alert dogs (Poodles, Portuguese Water Dog and Golden Retrievers seem suited to this work)
Wouldn’t it be nice to see more of these working dogs in use in New Zealand? (See my previous article on Deak Helton’s research – September 2011)