Sunday, April 30, 2006

Animal Neglect

A DOG-owner who left his chronically sick pet to suffer without seeing a vet has been banned from keeping animals for three years.

I have run across severely neglected dogs over the years. It amazes me how someone can neglect a dog like this.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Kids And Dogs Can't Be Left Unsupervised

Yesterday, I reported on the case of the 15 month old kid who was bitten by a dog. Now, today, we have a second story, which is being linked to the first. Neither story has a common thread, yet both reference the new breed ban in Australia.

Here is how this story is being reported:

A SEVEN-year-old boy has been bitten on the hand by a dog as he played in Sydney's northern suburbs. The boy, who was not seriously injured, was the second child to be attacked by a dog in the northern suburbs in two days He was bitten by a Rottweiler as he played outside a house in Narraweena this afternoon, a Warringah Council spokeswoman said. “The child was interacting with the dog through a fence but at this stage we're unclear as to which property this alleged attack took place,” the spokeswoman said.

So, this kid puts his hand through a fence and gets bitten by a dog. Is that the dog's fault? Does this have ANYTHING to do with breed? The answer is NO to both questions. Yet the press brings up the breed in this bite case. Where were the parents? I don't blame the dog in this instance. You can't put your hand through a fence to interact with a dog that isn't yours, period. This also shows why you need to have better fencing when containing your dog. Chain link isn't sufficient. A kid can reach through and get bitten like this, and even though it won't be your fault, you're going to be sued and will probably lose the case. The chain link needs to be surrounded by a covering if a dog is to be left alone in your yard. The covering can be a wooden fence, mesh material, bushes, etc. But, you need something. Dogs at home will be territorial. I do not believe it is wise to leave dogs unsupervised in a yard. You need to build a kennel to house the dog while you are away to prevent this kind of thing. The kennel should be set back from the perimeter of the property, not facing any walkway where a pedestrian can reach in to pester the dog. Dogs should only be left in the back yard if you are there at home to supervise. I also recommend posting Beware Of Dog and No Trespassing signs around your property, though that isn't going to help you 100% in court in bite cases with small kids, but it might mitigate the damages.

Now, we get more facts on yesterday's attack:

a.) The family and the child were familiar with the dog... The toddler's mother was distracted with another one of her children when the dog lunged about 4pm (AEST) yesterday at their Belrose home, in Sydney's north. "As far as she knows, the child didn't provoke the dog," Dr Hassall said. "The mum was completely beside herself. She was feeling guilty. She's stressed. Although she's not at all to blame, she feels that she's somehow let her daughter down."

b.) Police say the dog had escaped from the backyard of a nearby house while its owner was out.

The mother IS at fault for not watching her kid. The owner of the dog IS at fault if the dog escaped the yard. The breed of dog is irrelevant to the case, yet most of the reports include details of the breed of dog... a mix.

None of this would have happened if the parents of the kids were more vigilant, and if the dogs were better contained in a locked kennel while the owners were away. We never want to blame a mother when they let a kid get bitten. Would you feel the story would have been reported the same way if the kid had wandered off into the street and was run over by a truck, or the kid fell off a cliff while they were out camping, or scalding water came down on the kid in the kitchen while the mother was fussing with something else? And we have to start telling people that they need to stop leaving dogs unsupervised in the yard when they are away. It’s easier to blame a dog. We just don’t want to hurt people’s feelings these days. I’m just not that politically correct. If we are to prevent these kinds of things, then we need to deal with reality.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Media Bias Evident In Dog Bite Cases

It is interesting to see the bias in how the news reports dog bite cases…

Here is a perfect example… look how the breed of dog is an issue in this case…

First Story:

A TODDLER mauled by a dog in northern Sydney today is likely to require plastic surgery on severe facial and neck injuries.

The 15-month-old girl is in a stable condition in hospital after being mauled by the Labrador / Kelpie cross in the backyard of a house in Belrose just before 4pm (AEST).


Second Story:

The dog's breed was not known, the spokeswoman said.

Third Story:

The dog's breed was not known, the spokeswoman said.

A hospital spokeswoman said the injuries were not life-threatening and that the girl was likely to have some sort of plastic surgery.

Last year laws came into effect that banned the selling, breeding or acquiring of restricted dogs, which include pit bull terriers and Argentinian fighting dogs.


The Companion Animals Amendment Bill also required the desexing of all restricted dogs and increased the fine for a dog attack by a restricted breed to a maximum of $55,000 or imprisonment for two years.

This dog was a mixed bred dog… a mutt. But, note how the media were just anticipating that it was going to be a pit bull breed. The popular media are out on a mission to ban certain breeds of dog. These stories are sensationalized for a purpose. This isn’t just normal news reporting, and it is time we started complaining more about the bias in the media… on all things. I’m fed up with it. Dog biting is a result of improper breeding, inadequate socialization or outright neglect or abuse, lack of sufficient daily exercise and mental stimulation, lack of training, lack of supervision and lack of containment. It isn’t a breed problem. It’s just easier to ban breeds than ask people to be personally responsible... By the way, WHERE WERE THE PARENTS AND DOG OWNERS DURING ALL OF THIS??!!!

Friday, April 21, 2006

1984 All Over Again

Starting All Over Again

PET dogs and wild dogs have become such a problem that the Pudong New Area plans to set up dog-catching teams with staff to check on dog health, dog disputes and other issues.

About half the community disputes are caused by pet dogs, an animal control official said.

China has a lot to learn about dog ownership. The Communists banned the ownership of pet dogs during the Cultural Revolution. Now, China is going to have to learn all over again what it means to responsibly own a dog. This is what happens when you over regulate the lives of people.

I’m glad to see the changes happening in China, and I hope for further opening of their social, legal and political system to responsible dog ownership.

Hybrid Bites Kid

Jayden was playing on the swings inside a fenced area at the Semiahmoo kids camp Wednesday. A construction worker at the daycare had his dog at the site. The dog, described as a dingo mix, got into the play area and approached Jayden.

“He got off the swing and went to pet the dog, I think, and that's when the dog attacked him," Deanne said.

The dog was on top of the toddler biting his face when a daycare worker was able to pull him free.


I really don’t think it is a good idea to own a dingo mix. We have domesticated dogs for a purpose… to be human companions. To add back wild genes is a mistake. If you do have a domestic / wild dog hybrid, then you need to recognize that this kind of dog can’t be managed the same way you would with a 100% domesticated dog. Should they be outlawed? No, because that would imply that it was wrong for man to domesticate dogs in the first place, or own them, or to create new breeds today. But, you have to know what you are dealing with, and supervise such a dog appropriately.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Never Play With A Laser Pointer!!

YOU SHOULD NEVER USE A LASER POINTER AS A WAY OF PLAYING WITH YOUR DOG?!

People use laser pointers, a kind of laser flashlight, to shine a light spot on the floor. If you move the light spot around, most dogs will chase the spot and try to pounce on it (the same effect can be produced using a flashlight). I have seen numerous dogs harmed by this game. The dogs become obsessive about chasing lights and shadows, to the point of becoming compulsive about it, running around the yard or home, not being able to relax, and causing the dog to enter into a state of almost permanent anxiety. It is not a fun game for the dog. It can permanently harm your dog. Don’t do it!

It is a lazy way of exercising your dog, and you’ll regret it later on when you see your dog frantically trying to chase shadows and lights, and not being able to stop.

Don't Buy Puppies From Mexico!!!

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Hurray For The Swiss!

Government decides against dangerous dog ban.

Switzerland has decided against banning pit bulls. This is a major victory... let's just hope the legislation they intend to pass instead is fair to dogs and dog owners.

Stupid Is As Stupid Does

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

New Zealand's "Dangerous Dog" Madness... It Has To Stop!

The Government's refusal to back down on micro-chipping farm dogs has led Federated Farmers to toughen its stance on the issue.

Good for the farmers! This thing has gotten completely out of hand. Is the dangerous dog problem SO bad in New Zealand that every dog has to be assumed to be dangerous? Not likely. This is just Dog Hating insanity.

Six Month Old "Guard Dog"?

Snoopy, a 6-month-old German shepherd, was killed early Monday while guarding a construction yard in west Orlando.

Snoopy and a Doberman pinscher were held in a pen during the day and released by a ripcord when the last employee left at night…


This is the most insane K9 story I’ve read in a long while.

First off, a 6 month old dog is too young to guard anything. It can’t stand up for itself in a fight.

Second, guard dogs are OBSOLETE!! It is too easy to kill a guard dog, working alone without a human handler… as we see in this article. The day of the guard dog, working without a human handler, is over.

Tell me, how is a 6 month old dog supposed to fight off an attacker, especially one armed with a semi-automatic pistol? Yes, there was another dog present, but once the other (I assume adult) dog is dead, what is the younger dog supposed to do? Now, maybe the idea was that the older dog would help “train” the younger dog, and in a sense, I’m sure some of that can happen. But, this is what happens when dogs are put up against an armed intruder… the dog dies. And you have to wonder why the other dog wasn’t killed. Did it run away after the first dog was shot and killed?

I’d sure like to know, from the K9 company hired to deploy these dogs, what their rationale was for this kind of thing. On the face of it, it boggles the mind.

Stupid

A Baltimore County woman believes she should not have to pay for her dog's emergency surgery, saying her pet was burned during the procedure.

Almost all veterinarians are great with the care they give their dog patients. But, when you screw up, you should take the blame and just deal with it. In this case, the dog had an operation which required the removal of a toy from its intestine. But, the veterinarians then put the dog on a heating pad, which burned the dog… then expected the owner to not only pay for the surgery to correct the blockage, but also for the 3rd degree burns it suffered as a result of the heating pad. That’s just plain stupid... and now, after offending the dog owner, they risk a malpractice suit. Just imagine how this would look to a jury.

Monday, April 10, 2006

AKC / USDA Kennel Inspections?

AKC...errr....USDA kennel inspections

Thought you'd find this interesting, see below:

Yesterday, an AKC inspector went to the kennel of someone I know.

This person has been contributing to AKC's coffers in the capacity of showing and breeding top-quality dogs for over 30 years. These dogs are kept in great conditions. Thoughout the inspection, the inspector kept referring to USDA requirements and telling the kennel owner that the kennel did not meet USDA requirements. This person is not a commercial breeder and when the inspector was told that in that particular state hobby breeders were not required to get a USDA license, the reply was,"Not yet." In fact, I was told the AKC form actually has a check off box at the top to indicate whether or not it is a USDA inspection, which seems to indicate that AKC is going to go this route. It might also imply that AKC might decide that all AKC breeders should have USDA standard kennels (to keep up with the puppy mills, I guess).

What are some of the shortcomings this particular kennel did not satisfy for a USDA inspection? First, some of the kennel enclosures (for small breed dogs) were framed in wood. The kennel owner was told that USDA does not allow wood to be used. Secondly, during the day the dogs are put in a kennel which has inside/outside runs. The kennel area is heated and has A/C. The runs are not covered but instead are shaded by a large tree. My friend was informed that the USDA requires all runs where the dogs are "housed" to be covered.

The inspector was told that the dogs are not "housed" outside but are always in the house at night and during inclement weather. Even better, a large paddock exercise area apparently doesn't pass USDA muster either because according to the inspector USDA does not allow "dirt" surfaces. I guess grass grows on dirt. I wonder if pea gravel is excluded as well?

Well, this kennel passed AKC inspection but if the AKC is going to mirror the USDA standards for long term, responsible hobby breeders I think the bottom will really drop out of AKC registrations as most people I know will not put up with this type of officious and unwarranted intrusion of their privacy.

And obviously, despite what has been proclaimed by AKC that the new markup of PAWS exempts hobby breeders, it would appear AKC appears poised to adopt USDA commercial standards for all those who register with their services.

Anne M. Hier
Dog Shows Then and Now:An Annotated Anthology

Elizabeth Brinkley. MFA in Theatre
Dante Kennels, est. 1974
Latrobe, PA

Hermine Stover
Secretary
Responsible Dog Owners Of The Western States 23280 Stephanie Perris CA 92570
951 943 0990
fax 943 9199

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Negligent Dog Ownership

I received an infuriating inquiry the other day. A woman called me to ask if I knew of a shelter that would take an older dog. I asked her why she was looking to give her dog away. She said she had moved to an apartment, and her dog, an 11 year old Lab mix was never house trained, so the dog was destroying her carpets. After talking with her a bit more, she didn’t want to pay anyone to have the dog trained.

This is just outrageous. What kind of person wouldn’t house train their dog? Who could give an 11 year old dog away to certain death in a shelter? It is possible to house train even an 11 year old dog, if you want to. I sell a detailed lesson that tells you how to do that, at my business web page, www.SamTheDogTrainer.com

I think people like this are willingly ignorant of what they SHOULD do. These types should never own a dog. They don’t deserve a dog.

I also have had another couple of disturbing inquiries over the past couple of months. In both of these cases, the owners told me that when their dogs destroyed stuff in their houses, they “beat the sh_t out of the dog”. That was the exact phrase both of them used. I told these folks this was animal abuse, and not the way to deal with this kind of problem. The first guy was looking for a way to get rid of his dog. The other wanted me to give the dog some tough obedience training to solve the destruction. I just won’t do things that way. The owners need to want to change first, or I can’t fix what is going on with the dog. Abuse isn’t dog training, and I won’t hurt a dog. On the other hand, I have had owners who were willing to change, and from there, I was able to fix what was going on without being harsh with the dog. People with an anger problem shouldn't own a dog.

Spaying And Neutering

I am of the firm belief that we place too much emphasis on spaying and neutering. Not all dogs should be spayed or neutered, because their genetics are so excellent that they should be bred to improve the breed. In addition, male dogs can develop physical problems later in life if they were neutered at a young age… and no one talks about this stuff. I don’t think it is necessary to neuter male dogs at all, but if you are going to do it, I would recommend waiting until your dog is at least 2 years old. Spaying and neutering are unnatural things, and that can’t be good for any animal. If being intact is unhealthy, then all of us would have died off long ago. And any behavioral problems as a result of being intact can be solved with proper dog management and training. Make your choices and do what you wish. I know what I am going to do with my dogs… leave them intact.

Are you going to believe the animal rights wackos, or common sense?

Friday, April 07, 2006

Muslims Accused Of Killing "Unclean" Dogs?

When I visited Turkey last week on an inaugural London-to-Ankara flight, I decided the country was clearly ripe for membership of the European Union. Only a short walk from my hotel I found a Marks & Spencer, a McDonald's, a Body Shop and a Mothercare. I could have been in Milton Keynes.

But on the flight home next day, a stewardess gave me a copy of the Daily Telegraph that threatened to change my view. It contained a story from Ankara, the city I had just left, bearing the headline Muslims Accused of Killing "Unclean" Dogs. The report said a Turkish vet caring for stray animals had come across hundreds of dead dogs in a municipal dump. These were said to have been left there by city workers who liked to round up, torture and kill dogs because they believed them "unclean"…

Furthermore, the report included the distressing detail that at least two of the dead dogs had been sexually abused. Why would you want sexually to abuse a dog if you considered it "unclean"?


Strange stuff. My understanding is that dogs are specifically allowed for hunting purposes in the Muslim religion.

I think you will always find sick people who will find a way to justify barbarism, regardless of their religion or where they live in this world.

Dog Saves Woman From Attack

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Celebrity Pet Needs House Training

MANCHESTER United star Wayne Rooney is hiring a dog trainer because he is sick of cleaning up poo. One of the pet pooches belonging to his fiancee Coleen McLoughlin is leaving a mess all over their new home's expensive carpets. Coleen has three bichon frise lapdogs, Fizz, Bella and Daisy. Two are house-trained - but Daisy is causing Wayne, 20, real trouble at their new £3million Cheshire mansion. The tiny white dog keeps leaving its dog poo all over the plush carpets at the newly constructed home in Prestbury. And it's Wayne who's having to scoop it all up. He's got so fed up with cleaning the mess that he's decided to splash out on hiring a specialist trainer to house-train Daisy. A Manchester United source said: "It's not pleasant cleaning dog poo from the carpet and Wayne's had enough. "Daisy's going to get some tough obedience lessons."

It amazes me how people will wait far too long to hire a dog trainer, especially when it comes to house training. Then, they get to the point of being angry with the dog, when it was their fault all along.

House training problems are people problems, not dog problems. And dogs like this don’t need “some tough obedience classes” to fix it. That kind of approach will fail, and not get the dog house trained.

If he was smart, he’d purchase my House Training e-lesson, at my web page, www.SamTheDogTrainer.com , which would solve these problems. I just hope he’s hired a good trainer to work with, because from this article, I figure the problems are only just starting.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Dog Owner Dies Trying To Save Runaway Dog

A 61-year-old Fall City man was killed by a Greyhound bus late Sunday on Interstate 90 near Issaquah while apparently trying to get his dog off the freeway, according to the State Patrol.

Was there ever a clearer case of why you should train your dog to obey commands?!

I have recently been listening to audiotapes of Cesar Milan’s (the “Dog Whisperer”) latest book. I have found some interesting material, and I’m going to publish a review here soon. But, one thing that puzzles me is how anyone can call themselves a “dog psychologist” or "behaviorist", but not train dogs to do any kinds of commands. Seems kind of weird to me to offer training services, but not deal in command oriented training. I see the same kind of thing with so-called “certified animal behaviorists”. These folks, oftentimes with PhD’s from major veterinary schools, don’t teach command oriented training to dogs. Some actually scorn that kind of thing, calling it useless or cruel. They promote what they call “cruelty free” training, meaning they use drugs, harnesses and muzzles to control dogs when in public and in the home. Well, WHAT THE HECK ARE YOU SUPPOSED TO DO IF THE DOG GETS LOOSE?!! This “no training”, use drugs and harnesses, thing is fanaticism, in my humble opinion. The above case proves my point. Dogs need obedience training. They need to be able to obey commands off leash, with distractions.

What is a greater cruelty, using obedience training to teach a dog it MUST obey certain commands, or letting your dog or yourself die if your dog gets loose in traffic because you are a fanatic?

AMAZING FACT: You can do both types of training folks… deal with behavioral issues AND train command oriented behaviors. That doesn’t harm the dog, it improves the dog and it is an insurance policy to help prevent tragedies. I can do both. Why can’t or don't these other folks?