The northeast United States has received record snowfalls this year. And as a word of encouragement to all of those who are sick and tired of shovelling snow, here comes a video to give you confidence:
a Canadian man has trained his Yellow Labrador, Elsa, to shovel snow!
In this YouTube video, Elsa is hard at work clearing snow from the family’s ice rink (yes, it gets so cold and snowy there that families have their own ice skating rinks at home!)
Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, Canine Catering Ltd, Christchurch, New Zealand
I have just finished reading musician Rick Springfield’s memoir entitled Late, Late at Night. I was a fan during my high school years, had his poster on my wall, and I believe I was even a member of his official fan club. I also remember going to see him in concert (twice).
What I discovered in this book is that Springfield is also a dog person. Imagine that – even when much younger – I was attracted to people who liked dogs. There are many comments in Springfield’s memoir about the role of dogs in his early family life and through his career (you might remember that his dog Ron featured on several album covers).
Dogs acted as a source of inspiration and consistency in a life where depression was also a key player.
In January 2010, Springfield’s dog Gomer passed away. He and his people compiled a bunch of photos of the beloved dog in this tribute on YouTube. Dog people will ‘get’ this – the need to share and show how great our dog was and how much we miss them.
Having lost Daisy so recently, this tribute really resonated with me. I hope you enjoy it.
Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, The Balanced Dog Ltd, Christchurch, New Zealand
I’m not really a “gym” person, but if I could work out at home without interruption, I would love to do so. My sister has been doing her workouts at home, and her dedication and hard work are really starting to show. My fear is that my workouts would end up looking something like the ones featured in this week’s video selection.
You’ve got to admire a woman who can maintain some semblance of zen while a dog is licking her face incessantly or crawling under her and putting his butt up in her face, wagging tail and all.
I might not have the same issues with my dogs as she has with Otis, but I have no doubt that there would be something dropped in front of me, over and over again.
Jasper really does think I was put on this earth to throw his ball for him.
ABC News is reporting that a North Dakota company, Avianax, has treated about 50 puppies in seven states resulting in a 90 percent cure rate for canine parvovirus. Parvo spreads through animal waste and direct contact between dogs and is a major problem in animal shelters. Read and listen to more below:
This YouTube video was compiled by Robert, an Australian dog trainer (trading as CATMANTOO and Malibu Dog Training).
He says “After a dog graduates my off leash program, I’ll offer a “doggy outing service”. I pick up the dogs (usually between 8-12 dogs), take them to dog beaches or other dog friendly places, let them play together, while continuing to practice the training they’ve learned. I’ll rinse off any sand, trim their nails (if needed), then take them home.”
Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) is known for its frantic pace and passenger volumes. While it can be an exciting place, it can also be stressful.
Dogs are about to make this airport a whole lot better!
PUPS, Pups Unstressing Passengers, was launched last week. This new programme involves trained dogs and their volunteer handlers who will wander throughout the gate and departure areas to visit with passengers. They’ll provide comfort as well as be knowledgeable about the airport.
Each volunteer had a 4-hour classroom session to enable them to be familiar with the airport, the layout of airlines, and operational procedures.
This YouTube video provides an overview of the programme, including the collectible trading cards that will be available portraying each dog’s photo!
Can’t wait to travel through LAX on my next trip! (And maybe, for those of us traveling from New Zealand, San Francisco’s airport will start a similar initiative.)
Researchers at Emory University have published new research into canine cognition. Entitled Functional MRI in Awake Unrestrained Dogs, the paper outlines findings of research that required two dogs to remain motionless in an MRI machine.
Yes – that’s right. Motionless. The two dogs were outfitted with special ear muffs to protect them from the noise of the MRI and trained to rest their heads on a chin rest inside the machine. As the MRI took scans of the dog’s brain activity, hand signals were used to show the dogs whether there was or wasn’t a food reward.
This is a first-ever study on awake dogs, rather than those that have been sedated. Importantly, part of the animal ethics of the study was to ensure the dogs were willing participants.
The findings show a definite brain activity response when the hand signals indicated a food reward. Those dogs are paying attention!
The lead researcher, Professor Gregory Berns, says “We hope this opens up a whole new door for understanding canine cognition and inter-species communication. We want to understand the dog-human relationship, from the dog’s perspective.”
Professor Bern’s dog Callie in training in a mock-up of the MRI scanner (copyright Emory University)
Listen to Professor Berns talk about this project in the Emory University YouTube video: