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News: JoAnna Lou
Dog Sports Increasing in Popularity
AKC entries are at a record high
  Recently an accomplished dog trainer told me that the future of dog sports will evolve through increased accessibility. As pets become a greater part of the family, more people are bringing their dogs to training classes and exploring activities that they can do together.  Organizations like the American Kennel Club have realized this trend and have made changes to make their activities more...
News: JoAnna Lou
Comforting Kids in the Courtroom
Working canines help children called to testify
The courtroom is a stressful environment for all people, especially children. Testifying against a scary adult can be terrifying, causing many kids to shut down.  In an effort to help, programs across the country have started using dogs to provide comfort and support to people in court. The Canine Advocacy Program (CAP) in Michigan is the latest program to join others in Washington, California,...
News: JoAnna Lou
Persistent Pup Comes Home Five Years Later
Shih Tzu found his way home after his family moved four times
From time to time you hear about a loyal dog--lost on vacation or during a move--who walks hundreds of miles to find their family. Last week, Myrna Carillo’s Shih Tzu, Prince, showed up on her doorstep five years after she lost him.   While Prince may not have traveled as far as some of those other dogs, the little Shih Tzu tirelessly looked for Myrna after several major life changes. In the...
News: JoAnna Lou
Hip Replacements on the Rise
More dogs are getting surgery so they can run and jump again
Earlier this week I was reading the New York Times and was surprised to see a friend’s Pug, Lily, featured in an article about canine hip-replacement surgery. I’ve seen Lily run in agility many times and had no idea--clearly a testament to the success of hip-replacement surgery in dogs. Hip-replacement surgery has been performed on large dogs for decades, but in 2005, micro-hip replacements were...
News: JoAnna Lou
Healing Power of Dogs
More health care professionals are bringing their pets to work
Any dog lover knows the unique ability our pets have to cheer us up when we’re not feeling well. As a pet therapy team, Nemo and I have seen firsthand the power of pets to cheer people up at the hospital, often a very depressing place. And it seems that health care professionals are catching on. The Wall Street Journal reports that a growing number of psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers...
News: JoAnna Lou
Canine Behavior Database
C-BARQ provides data for valuable research
Recently, I attended a presentation of Parvene Farhoody’s research on the physical and behavioral effects of spaying and neutering, which is currently being prepared for publication. There were a lot of interesting findings that I can’t share until they’re published (I promise to do so when they are!), but I did learn about an important database. Parvene’s research was based on analysis of data...
News: JoAnna Lou
Herding Dogs in Modern Life
Today’s Border Collies herd rented sheep and compete at herding trials
In the past couple months, I’ve been doing a lot of research about Border Collie breeders in preparation for adding a new dog to our family.  I’m always in awe of a good herding dog‘s instinct.  While technology has replaced animals in many jobs (think horse drawn carriages), Border Collies remain the best way to manage livestock.  In my puppy search, I recently discovered the world of...
News: JoAnna Lou
National Train Your Dog Month
APDT dedicates January to socialization and training
  Last year the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT) decided that it was long overdue to dedicate a month to promote socialization and training. So in 2011 January became National Train Your Dog Month. The first month of the year was chosen because so many dogs are adopted or purchased during the holidays.  APDT wants to encourage new pet parents to start off the New Year on the right paw.  In...
News: JoAnna Lou
Weight Loss Resolutions
Vet hospital encourages cats and dogs to lose weight in 2011
It’s that time of year when everyone is making their New Years resolutions, many related to losing weight. In recent years, obesity has been a problem among both humans and pets, which can lead to a myriad of health consequences, including a shorter life span. To encourage pet weight loss resolutions, the Vinton Veterinary Hospital in Virginia is sponsoring a Biggest Loser competition for dogs...
News: JoAnna Lou
Adoptions Increase This Holiday Season
Shelters report higher adoption rates for December
Many shelters around the country are reporting higher adoption rates this holiday season. This is great news, although Christmas isn’t exactly the best time to bring home a new animal. I know many families want to surprise their kids with a puppy or kitten, but I can’t even imagine bringing home a new pet with all the hustle and bustle of the holidays. Nonetheless, I’m happy to see people adopt...

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