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News: JoAnna Lou
Reading Human Emotions
Study shows that dogs can discriminate between our expressions.
I don't think that we need a study to know our pups can tell when we're happy or sad, but it's still fun to see formal research explore our dogs' abilities and inner thinking. With all of the canine cognition labs cropping up at colleges around the world, there's been a lot of research showing that dogs can read human emotions. However a new study coming out of the University of Veterinary...
News: JoAnna Lou
Surprise Canine Visit at the Hospital
Iowa pup treks to Mercy Medical Center in search of her mom.
Nancy Franck had been in recovery post-surgery at Mercy Medical Center when she got the surprise of her hospital stay. When Nancy left home in Cedar Rapid, Iowa, she had to leave behind her beloved Schnauzers, Sissy and Barney. About two weeks into her hospital stay, Nancy's husband, Dale, noticed that Sissy was missing. He frantically searched for the 11 year old dog everywhere, but couldn't...
News: JoAnna Lou
Dog Cafes
Is a canine version of the popular cat cafe on the way?
There's been a lot of talk recently about cat cafes popping up in cities like New York and San Francisco. The feline establishments have long been in a fixture in Tokyo, giving tiny apartment dwellers their pet fix. While Japan now has cafes that feature all sorts of animals from owls to goats, the concept is just starting to trickle over to America. I'm guessing we'll never see a goat cafe in...
News: JoAnna Lou
Canine Attentiveness is Innate
Researchers study wolves to prove the origin of the human-dog relationship.
Many studies have show that dogs can understand human gestures, while chimpanzees cannot. This initially came as a surprise to scientists because of our genetic ties to primates. It was thought that canines developed this ability through domestication, however a series of new studies suggest that this capability may be more innate. Behavioral scientists from Austria's Messerli Research Institute...
News: JoAnna Lou
Poisonous Water
Dogs die after drinking water from California's Lake Chabot.
When I hike with my dogs, I always bring enough water for them to drink, but they often end up taking a few sips from streams along the way. Generally I don't think too much about where the pups are quenching their thirst (aside from keeping them out of very murky puddles), however a recent report of dogs dying from toxic algae is making me much more aware of trail side water. In the last two...
News: Guest Posts
Helicopter Pet Parents
Researchers look at how our personality affects pet care.
There's a lot of joking today about “helicopter parents” who are too overbearing with their kids. It may not be the best way to raise children, but what about pets? Two researchers at UC Berkeley and California State University are collaborating on a study that will look at personality and attachment style, how we relate to others, and whether it can predict better pet care. In the first part of...
News: JoAnna Lou
Therapy Dogs and Cancer Patients
Study documents the benefits of pet therapy at a NYC hospital.
When I visited hospital patients as part of a therapy dog program, it was obvious that my Sheltie, Nemo, brought joy to what could be a depressing environment. But still most people view animal-assisted therapy as a "nice to have," not something that could have a significant effect on a patient's health. That may all change with a new study at Mount Sinai Beth Israel hospital in New York City....
News: JoAnna Lou
The ARK at JFK
NYC airport is adding a terminal for traveling creatures.
A pet relief area at JFK International Airport.
Earlier this week I was at JFK International Airport and took a peek at one of the pet relief areas. It's a small, but well maintained, area for dogs to take a potty break before catching their flight. Many airports now have these relief spots, thanks in part to accommodating service dogs. However, animals traveling in and out of the New York City airport will soon have a brand new terminal just...
News: JoAnna Lou
Dogs Shed Light on Migration Patterns
Scientists use canine remains to learn more about humans.
We've benefited in many ways from our relationship with dogs. Studying canines has led to everything from new medical advancements to behavioral insights. Now scientists are using dogs to understand human migration patterns around the world. According to University of Illinois biologist Kelsey Witt, canines were one of the earliest organisms to have migrated with humans to every continent. This...
News: Guest Posts
Dog Rides Bus to the Park
Seattle pup is a public transportation regular.
My dogs are always ready to go, running in circles while I put on my shoes, grab my jacket, and throw poop bags into my backpack. I imagine they wonder why it takes so long to leave the house. But not all dogs are so patient. One pup in Seattle became tired of waiting and took matters into her own paws. Jeff Young and his Black Labrador mix, Eclipse, live next to the bus stop that takes them to...

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