Latest newsletter with easy prize giveaways!

Well, I’ve not been posting too much in the last few weeks as life sometimes gets so busy and so complicated and so, so messy. But, there are always obligations. And, that means getting out my foundation’s quarterly newsletter.

You don’t want to miss it. There’s a NEW giveaway with 3 folks each winning a prize valued at $20 …. simply by answering a mystery question and posting the answer at our foundation’s Facebook page.

Just click here and you can print out your own full-color issue.

Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww.

Herbie and Jabby are in love. And, ya gotta admit, this little pitbull puppy is too sweet.

Dom provided this wonderful video last month. She is a young Jersey girl with a love of horses, working for the SRF, a non-profit that rehabs, re-trains, and finds adoptive homes for non-competitive racehorses. You can follow this pair at her blog.

 

The Kitchen Remodel from Hell

Well, I’ve not been posting too much in the last few weeks as life sometimes gets so busy and so complicated and so, so messy. But, there are always obligations. So, I did manage to get out my foundation’s quarterly newsletter.

You don’t want to miss it. You will learn about my kitchen remodel, which after 3 months, has not gotten that far.  And, I have a book review of Stephen Huneck’s final book as well as a wonderful article from Suzi Beber on Slow Cooking for your Dog.

Just click here and you can print out your own full-color issue.

If you haven’t seen Dr. Greg Martinez slow-cooking for his dog family, in addition to eating the same out of the pot with them, you haven’t lived. Honestly, I’ve watched it a few times and enjoy it more each time. Dr. Greg is too funny and writes to tell me of his latest concoctions, all based on what goodies they have on special at the supermarket.

Do check out the good doctor’s great book, Dog Dish Diet, which I gave a Thumbs Up Review to in one of my previous newsletter issues.

And, for some of his latest gems and great advice, please enjoy a copy of his latest electric publication, Canine Crock Pot Cuisine.

Another punishing blow…

I am back here talking about Golden Retriever Robin, Police K-9 detection & SAR dog (aka Ch. Nitro’s Boy Wonder). I have posted here, here, here, and here about this very special guy, who has an aggressive form of cancer and is now fighting for his life.

Mary’s latest news is not good, Robin’s cancer having metastasized to the right mandibular lymph node:

I have heard that grief has several stages, one of which is denial. I find myself repeating that while the statistics are grim, Robin is no ordinary dog. He does not know that this will be the fight of his life, and it will be a prohibitively expensive process. Somehow in my struggle, I find myself taking momentary comfort in believing that somehow, this whole thing will be a big error and that Robin isn’t really sick. But, as soon as I sell out and feel that few seconds of comfort, reality comes back and drives a blade between my ribs and reminds me that Robin is in the cross-hairs.

Right now Robin and I are involved in a battle for his life, even though he is not yet showing signs of his illness. Robin’s type of cancer can have a variable prognosis, and Cornell has informed me that the initial treatment for his lymph node removal and radiation will cost somewhere in the vicinity of $8,500 to $10,000. If subsequent treatment is required, the costs will escalate from there. We are desperately trying to raise enough money to save him, and we need your help. Whether it be fundraising ideas, or personal donations, every little bit will help.

Please get over to grants.landofpuregold.com/robin.htm to learn more and help in this fight.

Here’s Golden Robin (BISS Am-Can Ch. Nitro’s Boy Wonder OS SDHF CGC TDI) and breeder/owner/handler Mary MacQueen receiving their AKC ACE award in the law enforcement division at the 2009 AKC/Eukanuba Invitational in Long Beach California.

And, here’s Robin doing his thing (drug detection).

Dr. Clair . . . what a character!

I first blogged about veterinarian, Dr. Clair Thompson, in April 2010, as he was preparing for his Golden Retriever Whitney’s delivery (turned out to be 11 healthy puppers). He and his veterinarian wife (Dr. Sammie Thompson) run East Stroudsburg Veterinary Hospital, and at the time, had three Goldens and one English Mastiff.

This New Year’s Eve video of his Golden, Whitney, was entitled: “Is this Animal Cruelty”.

Well, he’s now back with Buddy, the terrible terrier. Buddy is now in his 4th home, having bitten everyone in each home up until now. Dr Clair is treadmill training Buddy to wear him out and give him needed exercise. And, good news. Buddy is working to become a PAWS-itive Therapy Dog and has already paid two visits to Pocono Medical Center doing PAWS-itive therapy.

I don’t understand how we ended up in this place.

That is how Mary MacQueen begins her moving article, Personal Reflections:

I don’t understand how we ended up in this place. Not my partner! Not my hero! Not my friend! I keep rehashing all of this over in my head and just can’t seem to grasp it.

You see, Robin, my Police K-9 detection dog (aka Ch. Nitro’s Boy Wonder) and I are sitting in the waiting room of Cornell University’s Small animal Hospital, 200 miles from home, waiting to see an ONCOLOGIST!   …

Read more from Mary’s article at Golden Retriever Robin’s page: grants.landofpuregold.com/robin.htm .

BIG and tiny. Truly amazing.

Ellie with her kitty baby, Angie

This story is everywhere, and rightfully so. Ellie has adopted little kitty Angie. A soft meowing outside her Atlanta home two weeks ago has most certainly created a major rift in cyberspace. And, it has turned a dog-loving, allergic-to-cats home, into an inter-species realm. This photo is from Ellie’s Facebook page . . . and yes, be sure to get on over there to make a friend request so that you can keep up with how the story progresses.

Camille and Mari Ryan Heschmeyer say their dog Ellie has taken “ownership” of this tiny abandoned kitten after she found her in the back yard. Now, she has become Mom, now lactating and nursing her and never letting her out of her watchful site. Yes, allergies or not, little kitty Angie is there to stay.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Eleanor Jane (Ellie for short) thinks Ellen needs her and Miss Angie on her show. I’m sure it won’t be long.

OK Go’s “White Knuckles” …. HA, The Outtakes

On September 20th we detailed OK Go’s White Knuckles video, amazingly shot in one takeAs most of the dogs in this video are rescues, OK Go is donating a portion of all proceeds from the sale of the video on their site to animal rescue. I don’t know who was having more fun, the guys or the dogs.

Lauren Henry, the owner of Talented Animals and head animal trainer for this video, was brought in to make the canine choreography a reality. “They needed to enjoy it,” says Henry. “Otherwise there’s no way you’re going to drag a dog out there and have them do the same action again and again, day after day.”

“We spent a lot of time playing with them … Each behavior is part of a whole game they’re playing,” she explains. “For instance: the dogs running around people’s legs at the beginning. Riot, the little dog on the left, I would have her go around the chair and then I’d throw the ball. Then I would have her go her around the chair twice, and then throw the ball. And then three times, and then add the person.”

Sequestered in a studio outside of Portland for two weeks, the full routine was only completed about fifteen times. “It all gelled the second week of filming. The one we’re using was the first run we did on the second-to-last-day of filming,” Nordwind says. “We’ll work until we fall down, but the dogs needed time to rest. They were done by about 6:30 [p.m.]. They get tired: They want to go home and eat. In that respect I liked working on the dogs’ schedule.”

_________________________________________________________________________

Now, here is a great video showing a compilation of the outtakes. It actually brings the whole video together to see how it was made. Talk about team work.

I loved this comment from drummerbill805, one of the folks who worked on the video:

I worked on this video and it was amazing!!! I’m the guy tossin buckets on Dan the drummer’s side. The dogs were all incredible and stayed focused all day. Testament to Lauren Henry and Talented Animals—greatest two weeks of work in my entire life.

Dog folks ….. often such a stubborn lot

I think I must be really different than other dog people, because I actually listen to and seek out opinions from veterinarians and behaviorists. And, trust me, if I acted the following way in my vet’s office (and these incidents are 100% true), he’d throw me out in a heartbeat. How veterinarian, Dr. Jessica Volgelsang (Dr. V of Pawcurious fame), keeps her cool is just beyond me.

The ALWAYS fabulous Dr. Ian Dunbar (veterinarian, behaviorist & writer) speaks to dog trainers never actually listening …. and he is actually spot on. Just listen to him detail 3 simple strategies to successfully training a dog, which so many folks typically disregard.

We love the honesty in this recent video from Dr. Dunbar on binary feedback. We find that there is too much black and white in the training world, instead of realizing that a common sense eclectic approach that embraces the realistic grays of life is crucial.

The force and fear-based training of old is sadly still very much present today, with the utilization of positive and motivational approaches very much in the minority. And, it may be due to such training being given continuing voice in the media, such as we see in the strangely named, and in our opinion, horrid Dog Whisperer (Cesar Millan’s) show on the National Geographic Channel.

Dr. Sophia Yin speaks to this in her article: Experts Say Dominance-Based Dog Training Techniques Made Popular by Television Shows Can Contribute to Dog Bites.

According to a recent veterinary study published in The Journal of Applied Animal Behavior (2009), if you’re aggressive to your dog, your dog will be aggressive, too.

Says Meghan Herron, DVM, lead author of the study, “Our study demonstrated that many confrontational training methods, whether staring down dogs, striking them, or intimidating them with physical manipulation such as alpha rolls [holding dogs on their back], do little to correct improper behavior and can elicit aggressive responses.”

These techniques are pervasive in many T.V. shows and some popular books. For instance, The Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan routinely demonstrates alpha rolls, dominance downs and forced exposure to things that cause fear or aggression, and has depicted Millan restraining dogs or performing physical corrections in order to take valued possessions away from them.

And like their previous bestselling books, Divine Canine by the Monks of New Skete focuses on correcting bad behaviors using choke chain and pinch collar corrections rather than proven non-aversive techniques.

These sources attribute undesirable or aggressive behavior in dogs to the dog’s striving to gain social dominance or to a lack of dominance displayed by the owner. Advocates of this theory therefore suggest owners establish an “alpha” or pack-leader role.

But according to the AVSAB position statement on The Use of Dominance Theory in Animal Behavior Modification, undesirable behaviors are most frequently due to inadvertent rewarding of undesirable behaviors and lack of consistent rewarding of desirable behaviors.

Learn lots more about dog training here. You will be glad you did.

Thinking BIG

As one of diminished height (4″ 11″ and shrinking fast with age) with a befitting last name (Lesser), I particularly enjoyed this video.

Moxie the Great Dane is playing with Kitty, the family’s new teacup Chihuahua. In this video, Kitty is a mere 8-weeks-old and weighs only 1 pound, 2 ounces. Moxie was gentle with Kitty so the family let them play. Golden Retriever Ginger was not too interested.

 

A Gaggle of Goldens

As I told Mitch, I would never be able to handle all the brushing with this many Goldens, or actually deal with the neediness. Goldens just are such love sponges. Mitch says this about his Golden family: “This my group. My loves. This is my life.”

 

Mitch’s Mob (click to get a supersized view)

Sadly, one of his bunch—his Sparky—has a rapidly spreading (not able to be contained or stopped) cancer, that will soon take him from his Dad’s side. My heart is with him, as our Darcy had a similar type of cancer. Nothing can diminish the souls within, but it is quite disturbing to see a beloved one eaten away, from inside out.

All grown up before you know it

Pretty Girl Katly

Pretty Girl Katly

On January 20, 2009, I learned about a loss in our Land of PureGold Foundation family. Marti Brown, one of our wonderful Board Members, lost her Golden Angel Carly girl to cancer. But, 4 months later Golden Katly became the newest family member. A real pistol, Marty says that Katly is the smartest Golden that she has ever had. Boy, she looks so grown up in this latest photo.

Golden Katly all grown up

Check out her astute observations of that the paw-covered pouch in the care package that Mom just received from our Foundation Store. It contains our cinnamon-enticing Healing Honey Heart cookies.

Whoa, what is that enticing smell?

 

Worker bee Jesse … what a doll!

Jesse is trained using exclusively Positive Reinforcement and Clicker Training. All training has been done by his mom, Heather.

Jesse chooses to do the behaviors in this video, and has so much fun bringing smiles to people’s faces. He gets treats for doing his tricks, and enjoys learning new things. Tricks are just one of the activities we enjoy doing together. When not doing tricks, Jesse can be found playing with his cuz ball, chasing squeaker tennis balls, digging in search for lizards, de-fluffing stuffed toys, swimming, and a companioning me on outings. Jesse loves adventure, and lives each and every day to its fullest. Jesse is my best friend, heart dog, and truly a member of the family, and I love him with every beat of my heart.

Just luv OK Go’s “White Knuckles”

Photo: Nathan Truesdell

I don’t know who is having more fun, the guys or the dogs. The video is just too cute and debuted today on the Ellen Show. Be sure to check out the making of the video in Joseph Brannigan Lynch’s article, How OK Go Went to the Dogs in Their New Video. Amazingly, it was shot in one take. And, be sure to watch carefully for the goat’s cameo (I missed it my first viewing).

Lauren Henry, the owner of Talented Animals and head animal trainer for this video, was brought in to make the canine choreography a reality. “They needed to enjoy it,” says Henry. “Otherwise there’s no way you’re going to drag a dog out there and have them do the same action again and again, day after day.”

“We spent a lot of time playing with them … Each behavior is part of a whole game they’re playing,” she explains. “For instance: the dogs running around people’s legs at the beginning. Riot, the little dog on the left, I would have her go around the chair and then I’d throw the ball. Then I would have her go her around the chair twice, and then throw the ball. And then three times, and then add the person.”

Sequestered in a studio outside of Portland for two weeks, the full routine was only completed about fifteen times. “It all gelled the second week of filming. The one we’re using was the first run we did on the second-to-last-day of filming,” Nordwind says. “We’ll work until we fall down, but the dogs needed time to rest. They were done by about 6:30 [p.m.]. They get tired: They want to go home and eat. In that respect I liked working on the dogs’ schedule.”

White Knuckles Lyrics

You’ll never get that taste, out of your mouth
You’ll never get the paw prints, out of the hen house now
And you can’t go back, same way you came
Round all the pieces up, but they just dont fit the same

White knuckles
Maybe it’s not so bad
So let your hair down now

White knuckles
Yeah maybe it’s not so bad
Aww go ahead and let it down

So come and let it all out, let it bleed
Did you get what you want? Did you get what you need?
Behind the lines, behind the walls
Tell me what’s the bet you made, was it that bad after all?

White knuckles
Yeah maybe it’s not so bad
So let your hair down now

White knuckles
Aww maybe it’s not so bad
Just let it all come down now

So just have fun, it’s far enough
Everybody needs to sleep at night, everybody needs a crutch
But couldn’t good, be good enough?
Cause nothin’ ever doesn’t change but nothin’ changes much

Yeah, maybe it’s not so bad
So let your hair down now
White knuckles

Aww maybe it’s not so bad
Just let it all come down now

Yeah maybe it’s not so bad
Just let your hair come down now

Oh maybe it’s not so bad
Just let it all come down

OK Go Making a Difference — As most of the dogs in this video are rescues, OK Go is donating a portion of all proceeds from the sale of the video on their site to animal rescue.

Tails from the Vet Clinic: Fleased

The scene below was created by Dr. V of Pawcurious fame. It would be funny if it wasn’t totally true.

It’s hard to believe someone actually brought in his itchy dog and said all of this.

But, trust me, if Dr. V says it happened, it did. Being a veterinarian is not easy.

Yet, I am sure those folks working with Dr. V are having a hell of a good time.