Sunday, December 15, 2013

These dogs need a home, urgently!

UPDATE, Dec. 21, 2013: Just got word that Mitzi has been adopted. Boomer is still waiting but is safe at the foster home for as long as needed. Unfortunately, the news isn't good for Panda Bear. She had to be euthanized the other day after one hip was injured when she fell and the femur head ripped through the hip bone and damaged internal tissues. Surgery to repair this is prohibitively expensive for the foster family, and due to the extreme pain and uncertainty of the outcome of any surgery, it was decided to end her suffering. Condolences to all who knew and loved her, and to the foster family for their devotion to her well being.

These three dogs are living in a foster home for now and are safe, but they can't stay there forever, sadly. The foster family loves them very much but they must keep their rescues moving so they can have room for the next dog or cat that desperately needs a home.

This is Panda Bear, a Great Dane mix. She's only one year old and has just been spayed and vaccinated. She's healthy, housebroken, and kennel-trained, but she has a problem: her hip sockets didn't form correctly. She has trouble walking and is in pain if she tries to run and play. So she gets depressed and lays down a lot. The veterinarians feel surgery to remove the ball joints will help her to adapt as she recovers and the joints may "remodel" so she can live a more normal life. She needs a calm, more or less quiet, home with patient caregivers. She would prefer a playful, noisy house, with kids, but her condition wouldn't allow her to survive it.
And these two little white dogs on the right are Boomer and Mitzi. They have not been apart from each other since they met, so it's pretty important for them to be adopted together. They are not from the same litter or anything, but they are inseparably in love. Mitzi is 8 years old, spayed, vaccinated, up to date on all shots, housebroken, etc. Boomer is neutered and up to date as well. Mitzi is a miniature Maltese and Boomer is a Poodle/Maltese mix. He's only slightly larger.

All of these dogs are available for adoption to the right families. Send any inquiries by email to:

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Is it Halloween Again Already?

It seems like only yesterday, but here it is, another year gone by and we're shopping for costumes for the kids, and maybe even for the dogs, too.

Remember these few pointers for a successful Halloween:
  • Costumes should be comfortable and loose enough to allow movement without getting tangled.
  • Many candies are toxic for dogs and should be kept out of reach, especially chocolate.
  • Electric cords and candles should be placed safely to avoid tripping on them and causing a fire.
  • Keep your dog inside all evening. It's potentially hazardous outside, so just avoid it.
  • Even a normally calm dog could get agitated or excited when the front door opens to strangers every few moments, so either keep him on a leash or in another room until the Trick-or-Treating is over.
  • That said, don't just leave him alone in a back bedroom. He can hear the commotion out front and may go bananas by himself. It might work better to crate him where he can see you.
  • If your dog is still a puppy, keep him with you, leashed, and include him in your activities so he can learn new things.
 Be sure your dog is wearing a collar and ID tag just in case he gets excited and darts out the door when it is opened for visitors.

Enjoy your Halloween!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Disturbing List of Dog Heatstroke Deaths

Should you call the police when you see a dog locked in a car on a hot day?

Well, yes. But who should you call when it IS the police?

Follow these links to stories about dogs who died this year as a result of being left in a vehicle in hot weather. There are far more dog deaths than these, but there is something unique about this list. They are all police dogs who were left in a hot patrol car.
(This list is current as of today, but most news agencies remove stories after a certain length of time, so some of these may expire over time.)

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Holiday Precautions For Pets

With the holidays here, a lot of homes are decorated with all sorts of glittery and bright colored things. Some items can be toxic, such as poinsettia plants, holly, and other materials used in creating decorations. Wreaths, for example, can be made from artificial greens or from real ones. Table centerpieces may include toxic plant matter as well.

If you have a tree in the house, all the ornaments hanging on it may catch anyone's attention and imagination, including kids, cats, and the dog! Some pets are very well behaved and can be taught to leave them alone, but don't count on it when you aren't present.

Then, as the end of the year approaches, more parties are planned, maybe at your house. There might be food items that pets should not get into, including beverages that include alcohol.

And then there might be fireworks in your neighborhood on New Year's Eve. Just remember how this worked for your dog over the Fourth of July and take the same precautions to prevent anxiety from loud noises and a lot of activity in the household.

You may be celebrating, but remember to include your dog's best interests, too. 

Friday, October 28, 2011

Halloween Costumes For Dogs?

Every year we have fun dressing the kids up for Halloween, but what if you don't have kids? Or what if the kids want to take the family dog with them for Trick-or-Treat? More people now are even answering their doors in costume and like to include the family dog for that, too.

Should your dog wear a costume?

We've seen some really weird ones, some really funny ones, and some that probably should not be worn by anyone, even a pet rock.

Just as with the children, a costume should be comfortable, safe and practical. If it hurts, annoys or restricts your dog's movement, it probably is not the right outfit. It should be loose enough to allow normal movement as well as "breathing room." Too tight, and it could get too hot as well.

Remember, your dog doesn't know what Halloween is and may be very stressed out about the extra activity and noise. However, if your dog has been in your family long enough, he may be happy about the extra attention he gets, and is probably motivated to do whatever pleases his owner. Some dogs may feel better if allowed to sit out the festivities in a quiet bedroom, while others seem to enjoy the extra petting and attention.

Just be in tune with your dog's needs and Trick or Treat night should go very well.

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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Time to Say Good-bye to a Swell Dog

It's always a sad thing to have to send a loved pet to the "other side," but sometimes it's the kindest thing to do if they are suffering.

Jager, our beagle/lab mix, was almost 16 years old and had had a good life here on our farm for the last four years. He was a rescue dog and had lived a varied life. But his happiest times were here, chasing rabbits, sniffing all the animal trails, playing with the other dogs, and just sunning himself wherever and whenever he wanted to.

So when he developed a malignant tumor on his face, we were all terribly disappointed that he wouldn't be here very much longer. Treatment for his condition, provisionally diagnosed as a fibrosarcoma, would be over-the-top expensive, with no assurances of a good outcome. In fact, the prognosis included the very real possibility that he might not survive surgery.

Chemo and radiation are extremely expensive, too, with the same lack of promises.

So we let him enjoy his last summer here with us, doing as he pleased. We may have petted him a little more, or talked to him more often (though he was deaf already), and provided more of his favorite foods and treats.

Then the day came. It was not a choice anymore. It had become a necessity. He needed to be helped out of this life, to be freed from the pain and disabilities that seemed to be piling up faster now. See, he was having strokes now, too, and some days he was unable to walk normally. He would recover from these strokes and resume the ability to run again, but he was never as energetic and strong as he had been.

Now it was time.... and we were lucky to find the perfect veterinarian to do it. She and her assistant and I lovingly circled around him as he lay on the treatment table and hugged and petted him till he thought he had already gone to heaven!

Then the vet gently and painlessly inserted the final needle, and Jager fell asleep very quickly, but with love all around him. And I think he knew it.

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Saturday, July 23, 2011

How Are You Handling "Dog Days of Summer" Heat?

Are the Dog Days of Summer getting you down? How about your dog? If the heat bothers you, chances are good it's bothering your beloved dog, too. When we hear about people dying during hot weather, you can be sure there are a lot of dogs dying, too, but we don't hear about it on the news.

How can you help your dog make it through this intense summer? Here are some tips to keep your dog alive:

1. Keep the dog inside your house, especially during the heat of the day. Provide a cool spot in your home if you don't have air conditioning, such as a room with linoleum rather than carpeting. Even a "shady spot" outside may not provide enough cooling for a dog.

2. Be sure there is always clean, cool water...always!

3. Never leave your dog inside a car...not even for "just a minute." It can literally become an oven in there, within just a few moments. If you see a dog inside someone else's car, and you can't get hold of the owner (or if they refuse to do anything) call the police. It could mean the difference between life and death.

4. Help your dog cool off with frozen treats, such as a frozen Kong toy with peanut butter in it, or simply put ice cubes into his water bowl. You can also wet a bandana to wrap around his neck. But it will need to be wetted frequently if the heat dries it out too fast.

5. If your dog shows signs of heat stroke or exhaustion, run, don't walk, to the veterinarian.

Signs of heat stroke may include anxiety, rapid panting, excessive drooling and weakness. The gums may be bright red in the early stages, but if he goes into shock, they will become pale.

If he's outside, just pour cool water over the back of the head, then keep his head and belly areas cool on your way to the vet's office. Frozen cold packs are good, if you have any. If he has collapsed, he will need special medical care to make it.