Book Review: “Little Boy Blue”

Posted on August 12th, 2012 by Anna Nirva

Little Boy Blue cover imageMemorize this book cover. I want every dog-lover in America to read this book and pass it along to a friend. I want every dog-lover living in a county served by a taxpayer-funded animal shelter to call their local health department and ask for live-outcome statistics; if refused, I want that dog-lover to file “Freedom of Information” forms to get access. I want every dog-lover that discovers their local “shelter” is actually killing the majority of dogs to join with others and raise their voices high, hard, and long to demand change in leadership. If those dog-lovers knew what horrors their tax dollars funded in those animal control facilities (don’t call them shelters), things would change.

Now maybe they will. Author Kim Kavin’s book “Little Boy Blue” exposes the hideous truth about dog-killing facilities operating in many municipalities of our dog-loving nation: killing owner-surrendered dogs within hours, killing dogs with minor treatable ailments such as ringworm, killing dogs slowly in gas boxes while they scream and claw at the hatch to escape, tossing their bagged bodies in the dump, all the while lulling the public with happy stories of adoption in the local paper.  Read the rest of this entry »

    Watch Tip: Restraining Pets in Automobiles

    Posted on August 1st, 2012 by Trish Roman-Aquilino

    Watch Tip LogoThis morning, as I drove to work, I passed a car with a medium-sized dog with at least half of his or her body hanging out a half-open window, completely unrestrained.  As the car made a left turn, I watched from my rear-view mirror, worried that the pooch was going to fly out of the window as the vehicle careened around the corner.  The dog did not, and I was grateful, but it is an example of the need for pet restraint and/or containment in a vehicle.

    Loose Pets in Vehicles Pose Many Risks

    There are many dangers in letting pets roam freely in automobiles, to them and to others.  The group, Bark Buckle UP, has a detailed and thorough website that includes not only why pets should be safe, but all types of pet travel tips and product reviews.  From their site: Read the rest of this entry »

      Watch Tip: What to do if you find a dog

      Posted on July 2nd, 2012 by Trish Roman-Aquilino

      Watch Tip LogoWe’ve all been there – a dog is running loose in the neighborhood, or you see a dog sitting on the side of road, all alone. Most of us are inclined to help in those situations, and this week’s Watch Tip focuses on how to do so safely, thoroughly, and conscientiously, increasing the chances of your found dog being reunited with their owner.

      Play it safe

      Assuming the found dog is not aggressive or injured, and you can safely get the dog into your car or home, you will want to collar and leash them, so that they will not be able to escape you as well; it is very helpful to have extra leashes that can quickly be looped into a slip-leash.  If you have an appropriately-sized crate for transporting them, even better!  A special trick I learned from a long-time dog rescuer, is to close your car door on the leash, after putting the pup in the car – leaving only the handle portion of the leash extending from the car.  That way, you can grasp the end of the leash in your hand before opening the door, and the dog does not have an opportunity to escape. Read the rest of this entry »

        Pedigree – Recall Notice

        Posted on July 2nd, 2012 by Trish Roman-Aquilino

        Please click on the link below to read important recall information from Pedigree, a widely distributed brand of dog food, and please share the information with neighbors, friends, and family.

        Pedigree – Recall Notice.

          Watch Tip: Keep Pets Safe Around Water

          Posted on June 3rd, 2012 by Trish Roman-Aquilino

          Watch Tip LogoWarm weather is here, bringing increased activity in and around bodies of water; coupled with the common misconceptions that animals inherently know how to swim and that all dogs enjoy being in the water, this increases risk of tragic accidents.  Please be sure that you are taking the same care and concern with your pets that you would with small children, as the dangers are quite similar, and please kindly educate any family, neighbors, and friends on the proper pet water safety precautions, as outlined here.

          Water Safety Tips for Pets

          These tips are geared towards canine care, but could be used with those special felines that are offered closely supervised exposure to the outdoors, as we do not encourage allowing cats to roam freely. Read the rest of this entry »

            Watch Tip: Lawn & Garden Chemicals

            Posted on April 29th, 2012 by Anna Nirva

            Watch Tip LogoBeware of the deadly dangers of toxic lawn and garden chemicals. Don’t use them and prevent your pets from visiting neighbors who use them. Pesticides, insecticides and rodenticides can kill your pets, especially those that include sweeteners to attract their intended prey. If your neighbors complain about snails/slugs, mice/rats, flies and other pests, and they use toxic products to control them, keep your pets away!

            Protect Your Pets: Learn this List of Toxics

            1. Snail baits with metaldehyde  Read the rest of this entry »

              Watch Tip: Learn Your Pets’ Vital Signs

              Posted on April 22nd, 2012 by Anna Nirva

              Watch Tip LogoBe better prepared for emergencies involving your pets by learning how to take their normal (healthy) vital signs: pulse rate, respiratory rate, and temperature. You’ll want to know both the resting and active rates. Keep that information in your pet first aid kit, so you will recognize a problem earlier. Optionally, ask your vet to provide that information at your pet’s next exam.

              Review: “Pet First Aid & Disaster Response Guide” by PetsAmerica.org founder Elaine Acker

              This week’s tip was inspired by Acker’s book (cover pictured at right). You already know that Sunbear Squad encourages animal lovers to be good Samaritans for companion animals, especially neighbors’ pets and lost or abandoned animals in your area. We want every animal lover to be prepared, equipped, and knowledgeable, so we like to recommend helpful resources like this book ($18.95). This is one you want in your first aid kit. But please read it first; you’ll be glad you did.
              Click on the book cover to purchase the book. Read the rest of this entry »

                Watch Tip: Dog Park Tips & Warnings

                Posted on April 16th, 2012 by Trish Roman-Aquilino

                Watch Tip LogoDog parks have become extremely popular with dog owners for a variety of different reasons, including exercise, opportunities for socializing dogs, and just plain canine fun.  But there are problems to consider, and precautions to be taken, so that “fun” trip to the dog park doesn’t turn into a tragedy.   Following are ten tips and warnings to take heed of, and to distribute to any dog parents you may know!

                1.         Do your research first.

                Check out the dog park before taking your dog for his or her first outing.  Whether it’s Fido’s first time at this particular park, or visiting a park away from home, it pays to know the “lay of the land” before the first outing, and see what amenities are available (drinking water? separate play areas for small and large dogs?).  Know what the rules of the park are – they will have signs posted, and often a website that goes over the rules in more detail. Read the rest of this entry »

                  Diamond Pet Foods Recalls Some Bags of Dog Food

                  Posted on April 10th, 2012 by admin

                  Here we go again… Diamond is involved in another recall.

                   

                  Here is the report I just got from the FDA:

                   

                  04/10/2012 12:30 PM EDT
                  Diamond Pet Foods is voluntarily recalling Diamond Naturals Lamb Meal & Rice. This is being done as a precautionary measure, as the product has the potential to be contaminated with salmonella. No illnesses have been reported and no other Diamond manufactured products are affected.
                  Here is the complete information from the FDA site:

                    Watch Tip: Reducing Stress in Rescued Dogs

                    Posted on April 1st, 2012 by Trish Roman-Aquilino

                    Watch Tip LogoRescuing a dog from the street or adopting one from a shelter or rescue organization is a very rewarding experience. Often, rescued dogs may initially be stressed from their prior situation – kennel stress from the pound, anxiety from having lost the only family and routine they know, or sometimes they have been neglected and/or abused in their former lives. This means that more than likely one of the first things you will want to do when they arrive in your home, or need to do in some cases, is reduce their stress and anxiety levels, so that they can successfully and happily acclimate to their new environment and life. There are many different methods that can be utilized to attain this.

                    Signs of Stress.

                    First, understand the signs of canine stress.  Physiologically, the stress hormones released can cause an elevated heart-rate, dilated pupils, rapid breathing. A dog that is under stress or anxiety may have difficulty learning new behaviors (the stress hormones initiate a “fight or flight” reaction that overtakes them and does not allow for new behaviors to be learned) and may also exhibit behavioral issues because of that stress – lapses in housetraining, reactivity on leash, overly-aggressive barking, snapping, growling, shyness, escaping, destructiveness, to name just a few. Read the rest of this entry »