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Blog: Karen B. London
Service Dog Diversity
Pomeranian helps hearing-impaired woman
Pookee the Pomeranian helps Julianna Rigby by alerting her to sounds she can’t detect such as visitors at the door or the telephone ringing. Since the image many people have of service dogs is confined to German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers, Rigby sometimes receives dirty looks or requests to take the dog outside when she takes her with her to the grocery store or other places where dogs are...
Blog: Karen B. London
Stolen Dog
Son of deployed soldier is devastated
Sometimes you read a story that warms the cockles of your heart. Other times the overheating you feel stems more from rage or disgust. Such was my experience when I learned that a 10-year old boy’s new puppy had been stolen from his yard. Cameron’s Dad had given him the puppy, whose name is Caleb, before he deployed to Afghanistan. The meanies who took it did so on the actual day that he left for...
Blog: Karen B. London
Therapy Dog Gives Great Gift
A wife’s last smile.
  There are a zillion stories about the amazing effects of therapy dogs on people, but this one moved me even more than usual. A husband was with his dying wife in a Florida hospital when Pogo, a Shetland sheepdog came to visit. The wife began to pet the dog, wrapped her arms around him, and smiled. It had been a long time since she had smiled, and it was to be her last one. She died the next day...
Blog: Karen B. London
Trash Parties
Does your dog get into the garbage?
My sister and brother-in-law had a dog named Kiwi whom I truly adored. A chocolate Newfoundland, she died three years ago and is still missed. Among Kiwi’s many wonderful qualities were intelligence, an easygoing nature, gentleness with my children and all kids and a willingness to endure the high frequency of grooming required to keep any proper Newfie looking and feeling her best.   Was she...
Blog: Karen B. London
People Remind Me of Dog Breeds
This includes my children
My oldest son reminds me of a Greyhound. He seems to have two speeds: super fast and resting. He likes to curl up on the couch next to anybody or anything warm. He loves to run and is so into rabbits that he says that when he grows up, he wants to be a rabbit scientist. My other son is very high energy, physically adventurous and amusing in his unpredictability. Nature has seen fit to give him an...
Blog: Karen B. London
Crate Rest
Is it possible to survive it?
Besides the obviously horrendous news that a dog has cancer or is in kidney failure, there are few more dreaded statements from the veterinarian than, “Your dog needs to be on crate rest.” Every time a client relays the news to me that the vet has said this, I am torn between the urge to offer them a stiff drink or slide a chair under them before they fall over in despair.   Keeping a dog on...
Dog Culture: Reviews
All My Patients Have Tales: Favorite Stories from a Vet’s Practice
St. Martin’s Press, 226 pp., 2009; $24.95
If you've always loved the stories of James Herriot, get ready to be excited by Jeff Wells’ All My Patients Have Tales. It sounds too good to be true, but here is another veterinarian who loves both people and animals, understands small pets and farm animals alike, and tells a good story. Wells’ stories involve many species. Among the lively characters are dogs, cats, cows, turkeys, elephants,...
Blog: Karen B. London
Espresso Anyone?
How about a puppy?
Have you ever seen a sign in a store that says: “Unattended children will be given an espresso and a puppy”? This sign is getting more common where I live and many places online actually sell them. Of course, the idea is that parents will end up with a nightmare on their hands if they don’t follow through on their responsibility to monitor their children while shopping.   A friend of mine is very...
Blog: Karen B. London
Criminal Mistake
Running into K9 training
I love stupid criminal stories. My favorite is about a guy who robbed a liquor store. When the clerk asked for ID because he looked young and was taking beer, the thief presented his driver’s license. This made it easier for the police to apprehend him, in case you were wondering. Similarly, I like the one about the man holding up a bank who wrote his demands on the back of his personal deposit...
Blog: Karen B. London
An Unlikely Couple
The love of a goat and a dog
It’s hard to say what makes a pair fall so deeply in love, and when a close bond develops across species, it is both more puzzling and more endearing. A goat named Minelli and a Great Dane named Judy used to spend all their time together—sleeping, cuddling, and just being with each other.   They were strays, though, and are now being held in an animal care facility in Dallas for the required 18...

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