Bulldog kisses for his baby Orangutan

A tale of a bulldog babysitter and a lonely primate.


Sunbear Squad Watch Tip of the Week: March 29th

The Sunbear Squad has resolved to make a difference for neglected and abused companion animals. They are transforming animal lovers into animal welfare defenders — with knowledge, tools, and inspiration.

Watch Tip: Watch and listen for pets that are being tormented or tortured by bad teenagers and children, and call the authorities immediately to save their lives.

Be Sunbear Squad Informed
5 Simple Things
Bill of Rights for Pets
Risk Factor List
Learn about Abuse
Action Guidelines

Be Sunbear Squad Active
Neighborhood Watch
YouNet FAQ
Start a Squad
Free Materials

Be Sunbear Squad Prepared
Wallet Card
Roadside Rescue Kit
Disaster Plans
Reciprocal Fostering
SCRAPS Breathing
Be Sunbear Squad Inspired
Roadkilled Blessings
Be a Good Samaritan
Inspirational Sayings
Avoid Dog Slang
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Canine PTSD

This article is a very sad commentary on the utilization of innocent dogs for quite dangerous endeavors. While I do realize the life-saving that takes place via our canine friends at times such as earthquakes or on the slopes due to avalanches, I could never engage a dog of my own in such a field.

Lazy Dog’s Guide to Enlightenment

Enlightenment doesn’t always come in the form we expect it. It need not be a self-styled guru or a complicated contraption measuring some mysterious quality. Sometimes it’s as close as the Chocolate Lab bounding happily through the backyard, or the feisty Terrier contentedly curled up on one’s lap for a nap.

In the foreword to this thoughtful, wonderfully illustrated gift book by Andrea Hurst and Beth Wilson, Dr. Bernie Siegel says, “Dogs are healers. . . . They seem to have figured out how to live beautifully so much better than we humans have.” Loosely modeled on 1980’s underground classic The Lazy Man’s Guide to Enlightenment, this charming book celebrates the simple wisdom and that special combination of natural earthiness and subtle spirituality that characterizes humankind’s best friend. Distinctive black-and-white dog images by acclaimed photographer Zackary Folk are accompanied by captions of down-to-earth spiritual wisdom “from” the dogs to their often confused “owners.”

We simply love this book! The wonderful photos show many breeds and the wisdom is just so apropos for us 2-legged folks, as we often need guidance from our spiritual furkids. Some of our favorites are:

►Admit to your faults: What’s mine is mine, and what’s yours is mine too.
►Be content. Longing is the root of all suffering.
►Be willing to ask for forgiveness. We all make mistakes, but who we are is not one of them.

Get the book with a bonus of free glossy puppy stickers & an art illustration greeting card. Profits from this purchase, of course, go towards the grants that we provide for cancer treatment.

She couldn’t resist him.

Golden Retriever Alfie & Feral Rescue Kitty Cindy

I recently gave Alfie a much needed bath and decided to try a new shampoo-conditioner combination. Many years ago I attended a professional grooming workshop with one of the top handlers in the country. I was definitely out of my comfort zone and learned that weekend that every piece of equipment I owned and method I was using was wrong wrong wrong. So, I listened and went out and bought sheers that cost $200 plus a pair and lots more. I actually have an electric table in my basement that is cherished given my having difficulties with both my overall strength and pain in my hands doing repetitive movements. And, I had all the recommended grooming shampoos, sprays, conditioners, you name it. But, none of them are organic or truly sensitive in their formulas. So, I decided to try some products from a new eco-friendly line, and brought on Aroma Paws, a product line launched in 2008.

I have been delighted with the products and it wasn’t until a recent bathing that I got the best, most un-biased recommendation, of just how truly wonderful they were.

I am not too-much into fragrances so I have found combining the hypo-allergenic shampoo with one of the fragrances gives me just a touch of scent. So far, the honeysuckle jasmine dry skin formula is my favorite, and Kitty Cindy loves it as well. Let me tell you how I know.

Cindy (small 6-pounder) is not too enamored with Alfie (60-pounder), and essentially only tolerates his presence, demonstrably jealous of the attention he receives. But, when Gary and I decide to watch a movie in our big screen tv room where there is a 2-seat small couch, she must be there along with Alfie who squeezes between us.

Last week, I had just finished a 3-hour grooming session with the boy using my Aroma Paws 2-shampoo combo. Alfie bound upstairs and I slowly and painfully trudged up as well. After using this shampoo, I have noticed that the texture of Alfie’s fur is just like silk. It is just so soft and luxurious that Gary and I cannot keep our hands off of him after a bath. Alfie always has a great sheen, but I owe that to the 6000 units of pure Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon Oil that he gets daily. But, it is the shampoo that gives him the most delicious soft scent and the glorious feel.

Well, we decided to watch a movie after this long grooming session and therefore the pileup commenced on our small viewing sofa. I think this was the first time that Cindy was so close to Alfie after a bathing. Well, all of a sudden she began sniffing him. She pushed her nose back and forth from his paws up his legs to his chest. And, then she took her head and burrowed it into his fur. I almost could not see it any longer as it was almost covered entirely by Alfie’s fur. You could honestly tell that she was mesmerized by him. She could not seem to get enough and continued this behavior for a while. Poor Alfie did not know what to make of it since she is perpetually slapping him silly over one perceived injustice after another. So, he froze and just let her proceed. I only wish I had tried to get it on film, but it never would have captured the sensory experience that you needed to capture via smell and touch.

Honestly, I would love to hear from other folks after using this shampoo. I don’t typically get too excited about products like this but anyone who would have experienced this Kitty-Golden session would be similarly convinced.

I carry several of the products in the line at the site, 100% of our profits, of course, going towards the grants that we provide for cancer treatment. The two products that I combined and used on Alfie are from those shown below:

Aroma Paws Luxury Hypo-Allergenic Shampoo & Conditioner in One
This hypoallergenic & fragrance free formula is a blend of Organic Honey, Colloidal Oatmeal & Pro Vitamin B5. It was designed for dogs with sensitive skin and allergies to the dyes and chemicals found in many pet grooming lines. This chemical-free shampoo is pH Balanced, Eco-Friendly, and Bio-Degradable. It contains NO dyes, NO parabens, NO alcohol, NO salt & NO phosphates.

Instead, the shampoo contains:
Aloe Leaf Extract to relieve itching of sensitive or irritated skin; soothe bug bites.
Chamomile Flower to restore the pH balance to your dog’s skin & coat.
Sweet Almond Oil to soften the skin.
Organic Honey which is an antioxidant and natural antimicrobial.
Green Tea Leaf Extract which is a natural antioxidant.

Ingredients: Purified Water, Earth Derived Cleansers (from Coconut, Palm & Corn), Glycerin, Panthenol, Colloidal Oatmeal, Pure Honey, Sweet Almond Oil, Coconut Oil, Macadamia Seed Oil, Green Tea Leaf Extract, Extracts of: Apple Fruit, Lime Flower, Beet Root, Aloe Leaf, Chamomile Flower, Cucumber, Pine Tree Root, & Dandelion, Cellulose Gum, Palm Stearic Acid, Citric Acid, Blend of Botanical & Essential Oils

Aroma Paws Fragrance Shampoo & Conditioner in One

Aroma Paws Shampoo & Conditioner is blended with Green Tea Leaf Extract for a shiny coat, Aloe Leaf Extract to soothe skin, and Sweet Almond & Coconut Oils to relieve dryness and detangle. Their all natural, CHEMICAL FREE cleansing agents will safely, gently and naturally cleanse your dog’s skin and coat.

These chemical-free shampoos are pH Balanced, Eco-Friendly, and Bio-Degradable. They contain  NO dyes, NO parabens, NO alcohol, NO salt & NO phosphates.

The ingredients for these fragrance shampoos are: Purified Water, Earth Derived Cleansers (from Coconut, Palm & Corn), Glycerin, Panthenol, Colloidal Oatmeal, Pure Honey, Sweet Almond Oil, Coconut Oil, Macadamia Seed Oil, Green Tea Leaf Extract, Extracts of: Apple Fruit, Lime Flower, Beet Root, Aloe Leaf, Chamomile Flower, Cucumber, Pine Tree Root, & Dandelion, Cellulose Gum, Palm Stearic Acid, Citric Acid, Blend of Botanical & Essential Oils

These shampoo formulas all have the same base ingredients, only differing in the blend of botanical and essential oils that give each its own special properties.

LAVENDER CHAMOMILE Anti-itch & Hot Spot Relief Formula: contains French Lavender, Roman Chamomile, Ylang Ylang, and Eucalyptus. French Lavender Oil is a relaxant and skin soother. Roman Chamomile helps restore the pH balance to your dog’s skin and coat. Ylang Ylang Oil softens the skin. And, Eucalyptus Oil naturally refreshes and cleans the skin.

HONEYSUCKLE JASMINE Dry Skin & Dandruff Relief Formula: contains Honeysuckle, Indian Jasmine, and Sweet Violet.  Honeysuckle Soil is a natural emollient. Indian Jasmine Oil is a mood elevator and antiseptic. And, Sweet Violet Oil helps to reduce insomnia and stress.

COCONUT PAPAYA Sensitive Skin Formula: contains Coconut, Vanilla Bean, Hawaiian Papaya, Seagrass, and Seaweed Extract. Coconut Oil is a natural moisturizer. Papaya Extract conditions the skin and coat. Vanilla Bean Oil is a soothing, stress reliever. Seagrass Extract purifies the skin and increases circulation. Seaweed Extract is an anti-inflammatory.