Eddie is a one-year old Staffordshire Bull Terrier, and a regular client for massage.
This little boy gets up on the table all by himself…
Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, The Balanced Dog, Christchurch, New Zealand
Jonny (left) is a Staffordshire Bull Terrier who was rescued from Michael Vick’s dog fighting operations. In 2012, he received the most votes to win the prize of Most Beautiful Dog in the Top Dog Photo contest sponsored by soft toy manufacturer, Gund.
Through love, care and attention, Jonny was rehabilitated and now helps children who are learning to read. The children read aloud to Jonny, who is attentive and always non-judgmental.
Jonny has been immortalized in a soft toy by Gund. Measuring eight inches, you can buy Jonny for US$25.
The genetics research group at the University of Helsinki has published its findings into a study of tail chasing in dogs. The study involved 400 dogs and questionnaires to the owners about their dog’s behaviour. Samples of each dog’s blood were also taken.
The questionnaires covered behaviours, aspects of the dog’s puppyhood and daily routines. Owners were also asked to evaluate their dog’s personality.
Compulsive tail chasing can occur in any dog but is common in breeds such as the Bull Terrier and German Shepherd. These breeds were included in the research, as were the Miniature Bull Terrier and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier.
The study aimed to describe the characteristics of tail chasing in dogs and to ascertain the environmental risk factors for the disorder. The researchers also wanted to know if a previously identified gene that has been associated with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) had a role to play.
What they found
- The OCD gene that had been linked to other compulsive disorders in dogs was not associated with the tail chasing disorder
- Dogs responded with less tail chasing when fed supplements of vitamins and minerals, although the researchers feel that more study is warranted to prove this link
- Early separation from their mothers and/or poor care from their mother also predisposed dogs to compulsive tail chasing
Dogs may be a good model for studying OCD in humans because they are physiologically similar and share our environment. Consequently, this research has wider implications.
The research paper is available in the 27 July 2012 edition of PloS ONE
Source: University of Helsinki press release
Kathleen Crisley, Fear-Free certified professional and specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, The Balanced Dog, Christchurch, New Zealand
The Olympic torch is making its way through all 32 boroughs of London in advance of Friday’s start to the Olympic Games.
Dogs haven’t been left out of these preparations! Earlier today Michael Owen, a former player with Manchester United, carried the torch through the Battersea Dogs Home with a Staffordshire Bull Terrier named Rory on lead.
Tune in here for the photos…