Pets for Life Los Angeles celebrated a Community Outreach Event at Hollenbeck Park in East LA on June 7th by arranging FREE spay/neuter appointments for community pets. Freekibble.com donated 6,000 meals of Halo Spot’s Stew to the event.

This was just one of the 2014 successful events! Only about 15% of pets in under-served communities are spayed or neutered. When Pets for Life takes the information and services directly to these communities, they are able to spay or neuter around 70% of unaltered pets.

Amanda Arrington, Director of Pets for Life sent us a thank you and these wonderful pictures from the event.

Pets for Life builds humane communities using innovative strategies and fresh approaches designed to extend the reach of animal services, resources, and information to under-served areas. Addressing the critical need for accessible, affordable pet care, our program helps animals by empowering the people who care for them.



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Is It Just Us, or Do Dog Toys Sometimes Look a Little X-Rated?

Where exactly does one draw the line between dog toys and sex toys? Well, to be honest, because I’m writing this in the Bay Area, I know more than a few people who would tell you that there is no line. The leash and collar section is especially popular for some people, and I know of at least one café in San Francisco where, if one is so inclined, the staff will serve your espresso in a metal dog bowl. Ultimately, the words “sex” and “toy” are both extremely subjective, and their definition depends on how active your imagination is and how many people are coming over.

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Boisterous Boxer by Shutterstock.

This works the other way, too. It takes only a very low level of Google-fu to find scores of videos on YouTube of people whose dogs found their vibrator or other toy and decided that it would make the perfect chew toy. Once again, it's all a matter of perspective.

Mike Wehner on The Daily Dot explored the topic in a little more detail by combing the pet supply section on Amazon and seeing just how blurry the line can get. The answer? Pretty blurry, even without stretching your imagination too much. For instance, there's this thing:

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The Nylabone Odd Bone

If I saw that lying around someone's house without any context, I'm pretty sure that I'd assume that it was not for the dog. I know some very specific non-dog toys that look exactly like that. The name "Odd Stick" is rather suggestive in itself.

And then there's the Crinkits, which is meant to give your dog something to chew on instead of your water bottles. However, Wehner notes that it's "way cheaper than a Fleshlight." Frankly, it looks less comfortable, too, but everyone has their preference.

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Crinkits Dog Toy

The funny thing is, that as Michael Leaverton noted late last year when he covered a blog feature called "Sex Toy or Dog Toy Saturday," there has been a trend toward making actual sex toys cuter. A lot of them look like they could be dog toys. For instance, take the adorable and infamous "I Rub My Duckie." On first glance, would you take this into the bedroom, or toss it to the dog?

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I Rub My Duckie

Unless, of course, you had the bondage model, which looks a little bit less innocent. Any dog that grabs either of them is going to get a very surprising shot of vibration in the teeth.

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The lesson? Stay organized. Keep all your toys in their appropriate, appointed places. And, of course, make sure that your dogs understand which toys are theirs, and which are not.

Via The Daily Dot

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Latest Flea Prevention News

Angie's List: Preventive care for pets during summer months
"Especially during these summer months preventative care for your pets is important when it comes to parasites because it's very easy for them to pick up fleas, for example," said Angie's List Owner, Angie Hicks. "The treatment is much more expensive
Read more on KLEW

The Parasites That Plague Our Cats
–Some cats develop an allergy to the bite of the flea. Flea allergy dermatitis (FAD) is one of the most common allergies diagnosed in cats. Because the allergy is a reaction to a substance in the flea's saliva, it takes only one flea bite to cause an
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GIVEAWAY: Win a Kyjen Cross Slider Interactive Toy!

It’s hot. Really, really hot. You know that you need to exercise your dog but you can’t tear yourself away from the air-conditioner for an extended workout. What’s the answer? Now…

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Wallace The Pitbull Celebrates His 11th Birthday | Video

After a diagnosis of hemangiosarcoma, Wallace, a Pitbull, was given 2 weeks to 3 months without chemo. In this touching video, Wallace is celebrating his…

The post Wallace The Pitbull Celebrates His 11th Birthday | Video appeared first on A Place to Love Dogs.

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Latest Topical News

'Snowpiercer' Is Sci-Fi With Some Topical Bite
Snowpiercer is a veritable United Nations of sci-fi films. Directed by the Korean Bong Joon-Ho ( The Host ), based on a French graphic novel and with a cast built around Captain America (Chris Evans), Oscar winner Octavia Spencer, Tilda Swinton, Jamie
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Warning about rare, serious hypersensitivity to topical acne products
Warning about rare, serious hypersensitivity to topical acne products. Rare but serious hypersensitivity reactions have been reported with the use of some over-the-counter (OTC) acne products, according to a warning from the Food and Drug
Read more on AAP News (subscription)

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Too Much Dog Poop Might Cause the Shutdown of a Park in Maine

Do you want a good reason to bag your dog’s poop when you take them on a walk? Here’s one: too much poop lying around could spread disease and the community could wind up losing a very nice space for humans and dogs alike.

This isn’t just some abstract possibility: In Rockland, Maine, the city is seriously considering shutting down Snow Marine Park, according to the Bangor Daily News, because of elevated levels of E. coli bacteria, which can cause urinary tract infections, diarrhea, and in certain strains, kidney failure or anemia.

Terry Pinto, director of the local wastewater treatment plant, gave a report this week at the City Council meeting where he said that E. coli levels in the park's surface water are higher than any he's ever seen. The safe level for E. coli is 400; the most recent tests in the park's water show levels of 16,000. The reason for the bacteria seems to be the dog poop left sitting around the park by visitors.

So now the city is looking at its options. Most of those options don't look good for dogs and their owners to continue using the park. Pinto recommended that the park be closed temporarily while lime is spread to disinfect the area. Afterward, the park could be reopened, but with dogs banned.

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E coli bacterial colony by Shutterstock.

Other people aren't so eager to have dogs banned from Snow Marine Park, which officials say is a "de facto dog park," although it's not designated as such. Interim City Manager Tom Luttrell recommended that other options could include more signs reminding people to scoop up their dog's poop, paired with better enforcement.

Whatever happens to Snow Marine Park, the point remains: Dog poop isn't just something icky that you have to scrape off your shoe. When dog owners can't be bothered to pick up their dog's poop, it can become a real health hazard. E. coli isn't the only disease-causing agent that lives in fecal matter. Various parasites such as hookworms and roundworms live in dog waste, as well as infectious diseases including the Parvo virus.

Here's hoping that Rockland can find a way to keep the park dog-friendly, and also that dog lovers everywhere learn to love those plastic bags.

Via Bangor Daily News

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Good health is a revelation

When I took my son in for his first routine eye exam, I had no idea he needed glasses. Neither did he. He seemed fine, wasn’t running into things, was reading fine in school, but nonetheless the optometrist suggested glasses. OK, I said, let’s give it a shot.

One week later, his glasses arrived and we went into the office to pick them up. He picked them up dubiously, slid them over the bridge of his nose, and stood there for a moment, blinking as the refracted light hit his retina in new and improved ways.


He spun, slowly, taking it all in. His lips twitched, burbling with something important. When he could no longer hold it in, he opened his mouth and shouted, “I CAN SEEEEEE!!!!”

Boy did I feel like a horrible mom as the assorted clients turned to see this blind boy get his sight back.


Later that week I was sharing this story with a friend. As we were talking, her daughter picked up my kid’s glasses and put them on just for fun to see how weird things looked.

She came over and tugged on her mom’s sleeves. “Hey mom. Things look pretty good with these things on. I think I can’t see too well.” Then I felt less bad. It happens to us all.

We thought things were fine, my kid thought things were fine, and then someone with tools I didn’t have access to and the ability to evaluate things said, “Actually, life can be even better.” And it was.

I think of this all the time when people say, “Oh, Buster’s doing fine, he doesn’t need an exam or meds or anything.” To a client’s eye, he is fine. His gait is the same it’s always been. But I can pick up things they don’t, that slight crunchy feeling in the knee, a stiffness when I extend the leg. It took some doing, but we convinced that lab’s owner to try some Rimadyl.

Or the dachshund who came in for a routine dental. “He’s fine,” the owner reported. “He eats kind of slow but he’s been that way since we adopted him two years ago.” When we opened his mouth, the fetid odor of eight rotting teeth hit my nostrils, teeth held in by tartar more than by tissue at that point. It took some doing, but we convinced the owner to let us remove them.

In both cases, we got a call about a week later to marvel about this new dog in the house. “He’s like a puppy again! I can’t believe his energy! Who IS this dog?” Like my son spinning around in the optometrist office, they had a problem they didn’t even realize existed lifted from their shoulders, and got to experience something better for the first time.

In the year since their last eye exam, both kids seem to be perfectly fine, but I took them in dutifully anyway. Both of them need new prescriptions. This time, I don’t feel so bad. Big things we notice- small ones? Not always.

It isn’t my job to evaluate such things in my kids, or to be able to recognize the more subtle signs of something needing help. All I need to do is get them to someone who can, on a regular basis. Next stop: orthodontist. Lord help us all.

Just a little reminder to everyone that there is a reason we recommend yearly (twice yearly, for older pets) checkups at the vet. We’ll probably find things you weren’t aware of, and that’s OK. That’s what we’re here for! Every pet deserves the revelation of improved health. :)

Click here to view the embedded video.


Pawcurious: With Pet Lifestyle Expert and Veterinarian Dr. V.

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Can Dogs Fit Into a Workplace? Here’s How One Company Did It

Having a dog-friendly workplace is an idea where reality and theory can collide in a spectacularly messy fashion. It’s a beautiful, utopian idea, but there are logistical problems in executing it, and few people have the will or energy to pull it off. I once worked at a startup where the founder brought his dog in every day. The dog was a beloved member of the office, but the idea of extending that policy went straight to hell as soon as we brought another dog in. I won’t go into the details, but ultimately, dog privileges were declared to be strictly a perk of the founder.

So keeping that in mind, this blog post describing the evolution of SparkFun Electronics’ dog-friendly office is really impressive, and something that anyone who wants an office to be open to employee pooches should read.

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Rosie, one of the canine members of SparkFun’s team. Flickr

SparkFun did what my old startup job never could: It scaled up from having a few dogs to about 50 coming in every day. Not that it was easy. The author is quite frank about all the difficulties encountered along the way, including fights between dogs, dogs biting delivery people, and owners who didn't clean up poop, leading to a lot of grief for the groundskeepers.

For a while, SparkFun dealt with the dogs in a decentralized manner, where the manager of every department had a separate dog policy. That didn't work. Tension grew, and HR was frustrated by the various complications of 30 dogs running around the place. No one could really be blamed or disciplined, and so the problems continued to grow.

"No one dog owner could be reprimanded, so weaker blanket reprimands happened and the problem didn't go away," writes the company IT director, who on the blog calls himself Frencil.

At that point, no one could really blame the company if it just declared SparkFun to be a dog-free zone. Instead, it came up with the "Dog Tribunal," described as "the SparkFun equivalent of jury duty."

I have to admit, the term Dog Tribunal sends shivers down my back, and not the good kind. My nerd brain goes straight to an image of being hauled before a panel of sinister-looking men wearing monocles and black leather gloves who promise a quick execution if I only confess my crimes against the Imperial Leader of SparkFun.

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This apparently bears NO resemblance to the Dog Tribunal at SparkFun.

Apparently, the HR people at SparkFun have brains that are much less distorted by years of reading Marvel comics and watching trashy science fiction movies, because SparkFun's Dog Tribunal doesn't involve any of that.

"It saved our dog privileges," the author says. With members selected at random, the Dog Tribunal meets monthly, handles dog complaints and (if necessary) punishments, and amends the company's Dog Policy as needed.

And of course, there's the poop. The poop is always a problem, and Frencil writes that one of the most significant changes was when the company installed poop bag dispensers:

"This minor expense for the company eliminated any excuse a dog owner had to not curb their companion but did so by attacking the root of the problem: the fact that humans are forgetful and wouldn't carry little baggies around. We still organize a mass cleanup day every six months or so but this problem, once thought impossible to crack, has largely dissipated."

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On the left, your standard "scoop your poop" sign; on the right, the SparkFun version (Left image: sign board saying you must clean up after your dog by Shutterstock.

The dispenser sign is pretty awesome, blending humor with a strong message, instead of the "Scoop your poop or DIE!!!!" authoritarian tone that most signs adopt. It's available for download if you want to use it yourself.

I definitely don't think that dogs are for every workplace. Not every environment is suited to having 30 to 50 dogs running around the place, and certainly not all people are suited to working around dogs. But for SparkFun, dogs have become a part of the corporate culture, and it has found a good middle ground between the decentralized system of vague managerial policies that it started with, and just having HR make decisions by fiat whenever needed. When rules are clear, sensible, and participatory, they're a lot less likely to cause resentment.

Have you ever worked in a dog (or pet) friendly environment? Would you want to? What have you seen go wrong (or right) in such a situation?

Via Sparkfun Blog

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Cat Skin Allergies Symptoms and Treatment

In this video from the Cat Health Guide on cat skin allergies, Dr. Patrick McHale, DVM describes the steps a veterinarian will take when diagnosing and treat…
Video Rating: 5 / 5

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