A French Bulldog being carried through Menton’s indoor market.
A French Bulldog being carried through Menton’s indoor market.
Beautiful 10-year-old Newfoundland dog Layla sitting so pretty with her legs crossed waiting for her humans outside of a coffee shop
Got snails? We all know just how destructive snails can be to our gardens but the Giant African Snails are a very special problem. Considered one of the world’s most invasive species, destroying…
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Daytona flea market security guard stabber facing additional charges, official …
The man charged in the stabbing of a Daytona Flea and Farmers Market security guard is facing more charges after deputies found more than $ 5,000 in counterfeit bills, an official said. Enlarge. Austin Lowther. There were 95 counterfeit bills, in …
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California drought increasing flea population
Dry drought conditions are contributing to the increase in flea populations in the Northstate. Fleas can lead to long term health problems in pets like anemia. "I've seen more fleas in the past month than I've pretty much seen in my whole life," said …
Read more on KRCRTV.COM
Are you kidding me? After years of pressure, people finally get pet stores to agree to stop carrying treats from China only to have a new crop of cases of illness emerge in pets who ate jerky with a “Made in the USA” label.
Is it sourcing? Is it weird contamination from aliens? Who cares! Just don’t buy it. It’s not worth the risk. Feed your pet an apple, or some of their regular food, or follow the link to where I show you how to make it yourself.
Or watch the video:
Iranian animal-rights activists have taken to the streets in several cities throughout the country to protest a grotesque video showing men killing stray dogs.
The video is undated, but went viral within the last week. It allegedly shows dogs dying after being injected with acid by men in the city of Shiraz, about 500 miles south of Tehran. According to the Fars News Agency, the activist who took the video says that the men were paid $ 4 for each dog killed.
The biggest protest so far took place outside the offices of Vice President Masoumeh Ebtekar in Tehran. On Sunday, at least 500 people gathered outside, demanding an investigation of the video. Ebtekar said in a letter to the Interior Ministry that there needs to be "an immediate end to unconventional population control methods for stray dogs." She also addressed the crowd directly, telling them that "Hurting animals is unacceptable under any circumstances," but that the responsibility for pursuing an investigation falls on the local governments.
Demonstrations also took place in the cities of Shiraz, Qazvin, and Karaj.
Dog ownership is highly controversial in Iran and many other Muslim societies because certain schools of Islam consider dogs to be unclean. Owning them as pets, rather than as work animals, is especially frowned upon.
These feelings about dogs surfaced in Iran late last year, when 32 conservative members of the Iranian parliament signed a draft of a law that would have made walking a dog in public or owning one as a pet punishable by 74 lashes of the whip. In Malaysia, animal activist Syed Azmi Alhabshi got death threats when he organized a public event called "I Want to Touch a Dog," where Muslims could come to touch and pet dogs, many of them for the first time.
Although the taboo runs deep, there is also pushback against it from many Muslims, as the protests against the video show. The response to it has been broad-based; not only has the Vice President had to make an immediate response, but the local government of Shiraz was flooded with phone calls after the video hit the web, and Ali Karimi, a beloved former football star, posted a picture of himself with his two dogs on his Instagram account. Next to the picture, he wrote, "Dogs are the kindest domestic animals. I hope those who, under any excuse, did this to these animals get what they deserve." It's safe to say that we all agree with that sentiment.
Via Yahoo News
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German shepherds are one of the most common breeds in the world. I am not opposed to people keeping them and breeding them. Some of these dogs are wonderful family pets. Others are superior law enforcement dogs.
But what I do oppose is total hypocrisy in providing analysis about different breeds of dog.
I have not mentioned on this space before, but I am deeply skeptical of the research put out by Merritt Clifton of Animals 24-7. Not only does he get a lot of breed history wrong– his sloppy use of the term “molosser” is enough for me to question anyone’s expertise about dogs– but he actually engages in pseudoscientific claims about the behavior of breeds he happens to like.
Most people know Clifton for his tireless campaign to prove to the world that “pit bulls” are walking time bombs that are just about to explode at any moment. Anyone who questions him has been targeted as a “pit bull apologist” or a “pit bull nutter.”
But Clifton himself is one hell of an apologist. Just not with pit bulls.
German shepherds are herding dogs, bred for generations to guide and protect sheep. In modern society, they are among the dogs of choice for families with small children, because of their extremely strong protective instinct. They have three distinctively different bites: the guiding nip, which usually does not break the skin; the grab-and-drag, to pull a puppy or lamb or child away from danger, which is as gentle as emergency circumstances allow; and the reactive bite, usually in defense of territory, a child, or someone else the dog is inclined to guard. The reactive bite usually comes only after many warning barks, growls, and other exhibitions intended to avert a conflict. When it does come, it is typically accompanied by a frontal leap for the wrist or throat.
Because German shepherds often use the guiding nip and the grab-and-drag with children, who sometimes misread the dogs’ intentions and pull away in panic, they are involved in biting incidents at almost twice the rate that their numbers alone would predict: approximately 28% of all bite cases, according to a recent five-year compilation of Minneapolis animal control data. Yet none of the Minneapolis bites by German shepherds involved a serious injury: hurting someone is almost never the dogs’ intent.
There are several Clifton’s claims. The first is he conflates herding dogs with livestock guardian dogs. Herding dogs really don’t guard sheep, and the German shepherd’s ancestors were herding dogs. Instead, they engage in predatory behavior that is modified through selective breeding and training. Everyone who lives in a rural area knows that untrained collie-types are a major problem for people keeping sheep and goats. With no training to modify their behavior, they often surplus kill stock. Livestock guardian dogs, by contrast, bond with the stock and protect them. They are selected against exhibiting predatory behavior, and although these dogs sometimes do become predators of livestock, it is not something that anyone would breed for or tolerate within those strains. With herding dogs, though, it is often a tricky balance between herding and hunting.
Note that I said the German shepherd’s ancestors were bred for herding. The modern GSD has not been bred exclusively for this behavior for over a century. If you want an idea of what the original GSD was like, you will have to go to eastern Germany’s Harz Mountains and look for a mid-sized herding dog called Harzer fuchs, which means “Harz fox.” GSD were partially developed from the Thuringian sheepdog, and the Harz Mountains extend into Thurginia. This dog is actually an active herding breed, but Germany itself has many regional variants of sheepdog. This one just happens to look a lot like the standard German shepherd and is probably similar to the Thuringian type of dog that was crossed into the GSD.
The dog we call a German shepherd dog today, though, has undergone a radical transformation from the sheepdog. One cannot ignore that the dog we call the GSD today was largely the brainchild of a German cavalry officer named Max von Stephanitz. Stephanitz used prick-eared sheepdogs from southern and Eastern Germany, and very quickly began to standardize them and develop them as generalist working dogs. He founded the Verein für Deutsche Schäferhunde in 1899, and his club began developing the breed as the ultimate working dog. There was a heavy emphasis on breeding the dogs for personal protection and military purposes, and a strong selection away from bite inhibition behavior.
German shepherds bite people. His decision to arbitrarily create three categories of German shepherd bite is just weaseling. No credible ethologist or animal behaviorist would recognize these distinctions. GSD have been bred for personal protection and law enforcement. When they bite, it has nothing to do with herding. I bet there aren’t 200 GSD in all of North America that are used for herding stock, but there are thousands that are bred for protection work and sport and for law enforcement purposes.
What Clifton has done is really good example of legitimizing violence. German shepherds are generally thought of as dogs belonging to the police or a good conservative family, while pit bulls are the dogs of the nonwhite underclass. When a pit bull bites, it is a thug dog. When a German shepherd bites, it is the good shepherd.
In essence, the German shepherd is the equivalent of ” the good guy with a gun” we often hear right wing extremists talk about.
Clifton is treated as an expert on dog bite issues. I don’t know why. I will leave it to more qualified people to make analysis about pit bulls, but I can tell you that German shepherds should not be given a free pass when it comes to dog bite issues.
I am not an expert, but I do know enough about dogs to know when someone is just making stuff up.
Clifton is not giving an intellectually honest answer when he gives his German shepherd apologetics.
I write this not as someone who wants laws against German shepherds, but I can tell you that everything Clifton does is about making law on pit bulls and other “molossers,” which, I’ve pointed out, is actually bogus term.
All I am saying is consult the ethology literature on herding behavior, and read the actual history of German shepherd dogs. They are derived from herders, which is true, but they haven’t been bred exclusively for that behavior in well over a century. A German shepherd is a dog that has been bred to bite people, preferably under control and training. But an untrained, reactive GSD can do a lot of damage to person, just as any big dog could.
*Clifton, Merrit. “Dog bites and maimings, US and Canada: September 1982 to December 31, 2014.” Animals 24-7.
Video Rating: 0 / 5
I always look forward to opening up the mailbox. Sure, email is great – but there’s something magical and mysterious about having physical, tangible items delivered to you from somewhere beyond. The other day was no exception, as I happened to receive the latest issue of Dog Fancy magazine (November 2011). And in the “Natural Dog” section is a feature on Natural Dog Training, including interviews with me and Kevin Behan, along with a couple people who have had some very positive experiences with NDT. (Cliff Abrams and Sang Koh).
The article is entitled “Push Away Stress” – and I think it does a great job of zeroing in on one of the central principles in how we interact with our dogs – that the key to establishing a rock-solid connection with your dog is to recognize that life for your dog, especially in a human world, creates stress. Your mission (should you choose to accept it) is to give your dog ways to relax that tap into their innate mechanisms for releasing stress. By doing so, you are teaching your dog that no matter how the world makes them feel, you are uniquely capable of helping them get through it.
This might all sound a little mumbo-jumbo-y, but I’ve seen it now time and time again, how tapping into your dog’s primal circuitry changes things for the better. My DVD set (and this website, and Kevin’s books, and Lee Charles Kelley’s articles, and…) gives plenty of examples of how once you’re plugged in with your dog you can turn that relationship into enthusiastic “obedience.”
Note that the reason that I put the word “obedience” in quotes is because the concept becomes almost moot. Your dog doesn’t “obey” you – because there’s no need. What happens is that you learn how to communicate with your dog in a language that they understand. So your dog listens, and responds.
Not because they are suddenly blindly obeying you, or because you’ve become the “authority” in their lives – but because they care what you have to say. It makes sense to them. Even more, it FEELS good to act in harmony with your desires. Because now you both want the same thing.
If reading the Dog Fancy article is your introduction to Natural Dog Training, welcome! I’m sure you’re intrigued to know what “pushing” is all about – as the technique was essentially the focus of the article, without any detailed instruction on how to actually do it! As you might expect, I do explain thoroughly how to do it on my DVDs – but I also provide written instruction here on my website on How to Push with Your Dog (and the follow-up – Why to Push with Your Dog).
Thank you to Dog Fancy magazine (and writer Susan Chaney) for an open-minded article about what we do. And thanks, once again, to all of you. It’s your attention, questions, and feedback (yes, keep sending emails with your stories of your success!) that help remind me why I’m doing this in the first place.