Friday, August 26, 2011

Healing Through Helping: Veterans Provide Training for Shelter Dogs

I’m so proud of being a MUTT and I’m especially proud of the Mutt in this story because he found someone who needed him as much as he needed that someone. Sometimes the best healing power comes through helping someone else.

Just ask a Mutt named Legs and a Navy veteran named John Picray, participants in the Veterans & Shelter Dogs program, which is part of a study at the Research Center for Human/Animal Interaction at the University of Missouri’s College of Veterinary Medicine.
More than a hundred dogs have already gone through the training, which aims to make the shelter dogs more adoptable while at the same time benefiting the trainers.

“When people come back from the military, they are changed,” said Rebecca Johnson, the MU professor and lead researcher of the veterans/shelter dog project. “Many of them come home with some degree of post-traumatic stress,” she said. “Working with the dogs is relaxing and rewarding.”

The vets and the dogs are monitored to see how their relationship affects them, and adoption rates will be compared with shelter dogs who don’t receive the training. Dogs that show exceptional train-ability in the program may also be candidates to become permanent companions for veterans with debilitating post-traumatic stress disorder.

For more about the dogs and veterans involved in this program, and how service dogs can help vets suffering from PTSD, here’s the full story from KC Pets.

Oh and if you haven't signed up on my blog yet you'll be missing out on my Monthly drawing for Up Country, Inc goodies! 
Pin It!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A Mixed-Breed Dog Did What?!

So, today I heard about this great story through my doggie network and wanted to share and give a Woof-out to my fellow pup pals who are also genetically challenged dogs just like me! Guthrie, a mixed-breed dog who lives in Arizona, was adopted by a little girl and her family and the dog, Guthrie, has been helping the young human girl learn to read!  There is a program called Paws for People where our kind go to become therapy dogs.  According to a important paper from Tufts University, "This component of the human-animal bond could specifically help to address the low self esteem commonly seen in students struggling with reading, while providing them the support and confidence they need to practice and improve."

The tiny human, Bailey Benson, is 10 years old and reads books she thinks her dog Guthrie would like to hear. I think that's really considerate of her, although I believe we would all agree that we are happy just to snuggle with our humans every chance we get!  To see how this unusual reading club of two made this happen wag on over to my blog
Pin It!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

9 - 11 Canine Hero Retires - Abby a Dedicated Lab

Eleven days after the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center, Debra Tosch arrived at Ground Zero with her partner Abby to search for survivors.

“We turned this one corner and there it was: the collapsed towers. It was overwhelming, like, where do you even start?” Tosch recalls.

Abby, a black Labrador trained to lead rescue teams to trapped victims in disaster areas, was more assured. “She knew it was time to search,” says Tosch, the executive director of the Search Dog Foundation. 
 Once this very special team arrived find out what happened here.
Pin It!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Dog Napping on the Rise Across the Nation

This MUTTering raises my hackles! Dognappings have risen 50% percent in the country in the past year, Lisa Peterson, communications director for the American Kennel Club, told "Good Morning America." Is this yet another sign of our economy? Dogs have been stolen from pet stores, from breeders and from right under their owners' noses at home. Some of the brazen thefts have even been caught on tape.Coveted breeds are stolen then advertised on Craigslist, Facebook, classifieds, etc.  GenChans*, former mutts, like me are being dognapped and sold to laboratories or sold as 'bait' dogs. Desperate people will do desperate things so please don't set your furry family member up to become a statistic in this crime.

Here is the story, reported by ABC News, of John Husky and Dina Martinez of Venice, Calif., as they felt the effects of this growing trend firsthand.The couple were devastated when their 4-month-old dog, Mr. James Brown, went missing. Find out what happened to their dog and some of the incredible things owners are doing to protect and monitor their furbabies.

We hope you haven't lost any of your pets this way but tell us if you have had any experience like this and what happened.

*GenChan® - the first 'breed' for mutts and mixes and a humorous acronym for the genetically challenged dog.
Pin It!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Puggles: Designer Dogs or Overhyped Mutts?

OK! OK! Before any doggy or anybody goes ballistic please know that one of my very best friends is a Puggle. I would do nothing to besmirch his bloodline, personality or behavior (BOL !!!). Koly is a very smart Puggle and he's funny and I'm sure he is worth every penny his humans paid for him!

That being said and now that I have that disclosure out of the way, I found this article posted on Squidoo debating this Puggle quandry very interesting. 
Oh you can catch His Kolyness' blog  by clicking here.
Pin It!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

The power of focusing on what you want.....

There is a saying that you get what you focus on.  Little Benjamin Benson proved that after focusing on his little white dog Caesar for over a year. A horrific car accident killed his Dad and little sister and put Benjamin in the Intensive Care unit of the hospital. Caesar was in the vehicle with them. Although only 18 months old he would point to pictures and say Caesar over and over again. Read how this story, from the Quay County Sun, turns out for Benjamin, his Mom and sisters. 
Pin It!

Monday, August 8, 2011

MUTT health vs. Pure Bred health - Who's the winner? You decide!

One of the reason we love our mutts is that they are almost always more healthy than their purebred cousins. Dogs that have been bred for generations to have certain attributes have that bloodline, but those attributes usually have to do with hair, size, and other factors, not the overall health of the dog.  

Mutts, be they designer cross-breeds or just dogs of unknown or unclear origin, are far less often afflicted with hip problems, anxiety, etc. We are not alone in noticing this. We saw this story recently on MSNBC, which talks about the whole phenomenon of designer dogs, including some of the big celebrities among both human and dogs. One line, especially, caught our interest.
“You’d think that the AKC is all for dogs being healthy, but they’re not,” says (Alana) Snook, who now breeds puggles and cavachons. “All they care about is their registration fees. AKC makes a lot of money off breeders.” Since she began breeding designer dogs, Snook says, “our AKC fees have probably gone down to one-fourth of what they used to be.”... but because there are so many additional 'breeds' that have been approved by the AKC they are actually making more money by bringing on as many 'designer breeds' as possible.  What's next we wonder. . . a Rusuggierard*? Now that's a picture of health and fun! BOL!
So if the organization that's in charge of the breed purity isn't worried about health, then who is?  That's the great part about mutts, but just one of the things. We love our mutts, and even if they get to be famous and have YouTube videos and more, we still think that they are loveable without all of that, and just because they are dogs. When you take a dog to a dog park, the owners all want to know what breed a dog is, but the dogs just want to play. They never stop to ask each other about breeding.
One other thing we know is that mutt health, and all dog health, is important and we hope you'll keep checking out MUTTeringsAndThings to find out about all things mutt.

*(Russian Wolfhound, Puggle, Terrier, Shepard mix)
Pin It!