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Blog: Guest Posts
Must See TV
Den cam streams an African Wild Dog pack live.
  I’ve been checking in semi-regularly to a live video feed from the Blue Canyon Game Conservancy near Hoedspruit, South Africa, but my timing hasn’t been great—until this morning. Over my first cup of coffee, I enjoyed a long, lingering glimpse of an African Wild Dog pack, including a passel of squealing newborn pups. I think I counted nine. (At last check, the pups were wrestling, while...
Blog: Guest Posts
Origin of (Dog) Species
East Asia may not be where it all began.
Over the weekend, a science writer friend tipped me off to a paper to be published on Monday—“Complex population structure in African village dogs and its implications for inferring dog domestication history.” It was a gloriously sunny weekend, perfect for adventures with Lulu and Renzo, so I gave the paper a skim and managed to underappreciate the implications. As usual, I left it to The New...
Blog: Guest Posts
Pup Music
Fifty and counting: Why does Robbie Long write (so many) dog songs?
I’m feeling good—tapping my toes and singing aloud—because I’ve spent most of the morning listening to What Kind of Dog Am I?, a CD of songs from a dog’s point of view written and performed by Robbie Long. Songs like “Green Tennis Ball,”         You might see me scratch-n-sniffin’ with my tongue hanging loose.    You might think I need a bath and that I have no use.    But in a snap I’m a hero...
Blog: Guest Posts
Three-Legged Dog Idol
Worldwide casting call and competition to find tripod star.
One of my favorite all-time Bark covers is from the July/August 2006 issue. It features Clover, a two-year-old, three-legged Border Collie with a flower garland around her neck and a hint of drool. (While still a puppy and a stray, Clover had been hit by a car. Thanks to the intervention of Pets Unlimited, she got the surgery she needed to go on to a happy life on three legs.) So, I totally get...
Blog: Guest Posts
Mysteries of the Basset Hound Revealed
Scientists isolate the gene behind short legs.
A new study published in Science identifies the single evolutionary event that shortened the legs of Dachshunds, Basset Hounds and other stubby puppies. An extra copy of a gene (Fgf4 retrogene, to be exact), acquired by mutation at least 300 years ago, “causes the overproduction of a protein that disrupts growth during fetal development,” writes Sarah Arnquist, translating the study for a New...
Blog: Guest Posts
Unfriendly Fire
Must read: Report on police shootings of dogs.
In his recent Daily Beast story, “Dogs in A Deadly Crossfire,” Radley Balko reports on an increase in media accounts “of police shooting the family pet—with a notable lack of remorse or disciplinary consequences.” Balko’s beat is police misconduct, with a special focus on paramilitary tactics. From what he sees, dogs are increasingly innocent victims of a war footing at PD’s around the country....
Blog: Guest Posts
Thank Your Vet
Do you have the best veterinarian in the country?
I love my vet. She’s smart, approachable, kind and thorough. She never seems rushed, even when the waiting room is full, and she listens carefully to all our stories and nagging concerns. But most of all, I appreciate her hands-on talents with my vet-phobic dogs. You don’t have to be a certified behaviorist to recognize that Lulu and Renzo want to be anywhere but the examination room (tucked...
Blog: Guest Posts
First Chomper
New York’s governor hires a trainer for his testy Maltese.
Why is it that when small dogs are aggressive and biting it’s treated as a joke? Take New York Governor David Paterson’s Maltese, Cheerio--a full-time tough guy with at least two bites to his credit. Imagine if those teeth belonged to a bigger dog with a tougher reputation living in the home someone with a lot less clout. I’m just glad the governor finally recognized that a pint-sized...
Blog: Guest Posts
A Job for Eager Shelter Dogs
The country’s first hearing dog training program turns 30.
We’ve become so accustomed to service dogs, it’s almost hard to imagine a time before dogs vetted crosswalks, retrieved phones and listened for doorbells. But in many arenas, the phenomenon of the furry helper in a harness has been around for less than a generation. In the 1960s, Elva Janke of Minnesota lived with a pup who alerted her to sounds—alarms, bells, that sort of thing—she could not...
Blog: Guest Posts
Party Animals
Jill Beninato celebrates dogs and artists.
The only downside to Jill Beninato’s inspired fundraising art collaboration last year was there wasn’t enough art to go around. Thirteen copies of the luscious art swap/fat book, Dogs Rule (see The Bark, September 2008), went to the participating artists and only one was auctioned for the benefit of A Place To Bark animal rescue. Well, Beninato is back—and this time she’s corralled even more dog...

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