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Dog Culture: DogPatch
Good Deeds with Beads
Hand-beaded dog collars help send Maasai girls to school
For a young Maasai girl in rural Kenya, the future often looks like this: If her parents can afford high school, her brothers will attend in her place. At puberty, she’ll be forced into an arranged marriage to a much older man, as his second or third wife. She’ll be expected to bear as many children as possible. Once a mother, she will be in no position to educate her children or improve her...
Blog: Guest Posts
Holiday Ornaments with a Mission
Make happy tails come true this December
This time of year, I’m always looking for ways to balance the excesses of the holiday with the true spirit of giving—without being a total buzzkill. It’s not always easy. But I can depend on Shelby Humane Society ornaments. For a $50 sponsorship fee, I receive a framed portrait of an adorable shelter pup in Central Alabama, where pet overpopulation makes finding dogs homes extremely difficult....
Blog: Guest Posts
Our First-Ever Dogging the Hound Award
To Gail Collins for never letting Romney off the hook
For some achievements in life, there are established awards. For others, awards must be created—inspired by an accomplishment. And so it is with New York Times columnist Gail Collins and her relentless mission not to let Mitt Romney off the hook for his massively ill-fated decision to put his Irish Setter, Seamus, in a crate and tie the crate to the roof of the family car for an eight-hour drive...
Update: Military Dogs with PTSD
More dogs in war, more dogs suffering combat stress
Last March, several news stories reported on the mental and physical health costs U.S. military dogs were paying in the line of duty, including what behaviorists at the time mostly called “combat stress.” Now they're calling it canine PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), and, according to a story in The New York Times, more than five percent of the approximately 650 military dogs deployed in...
Blog: Guest Posts
West Hollywood Bans Fur Sales
Good for foxes and rabbits and dogs and cats
West Hollywood is simultaneously the first and the last place you’d expect a ban on fur sales. The last place because West Hollywood is home to a long tradition of A-listers sporting fur when it’s not even cold. The first place because West Hollywood has steadily been in the vanguard of passing humane laws. It was the first city to ban the declawing of cats in 2003 and among the first to formally...
Blog: Guest Posts
How Many Raisins in Raisin Bran?
A veterinarian with a potentially sick dog needed to know
Thanks to everyone who replied to my post, A Death in the Pack. Your stories and advice were both comforting and enlightening. Happily, Renzo dodged any long-term ill effects of his raisin binge and was back on stride within a few days. But there was one aspect of Raisingate that was not satisfactory. When I first brought Renzo in, my veterinarian tried to assess how many raisins he may have...
Blog: Guest Posts
Tackling the Pet Piece of the Domestic Violence Problem
Central Florida shelter breaks ground for unprecedented kennel
If you think providing housing for companion animals at domestic violence shelters is a costly indulgence rather than an essential component in prevention, consider these sobering statistics (from Harbor House, a comprehensive domestic violence prevention program in Central Florida): 48 percent of domestic violence survivors delay leaving an abusive home because they have no safe place for...
Blog: Guest Posts
Firing Raises Questions About Shelter Policy
Why not encourage good photography?
Bark contributor Anna Jane Grossman (famously of the recent East Village Halloween parade post) recently wrote a fascinating piece about the firing of Emily Tanen at NYC’s Animal Care & Control. Until recently, Tanen was liaison between the shelter and its many rescue group partners. (She is the founder of Project Pet, Inc.). According to the story, Tanen was fired for taking photos of dogs...
Blog: Guest Posts
Trendspotting: Pop-Up Adoption Shops
New York City and Thousand Oaks, Calif., target new demographic
Early this month, the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals began hosting the country’s first-ever Pop-Up Pet Adoption and Supply Shop. Pop-up restaurants, along with food trucks, have been a popular feature of the Seattle culinary landscape for the last few years so why not pet adoptions? Essentially, these are limited-engagement shops—that stir up excitement and, in the case of homeless dogs and...
Blog: Guest Posts
Death in the Pack
How does it change the dynamics?
I spent this morning at my veterinarian’s office with my dog Renzo, as the result of an early morning counter-surf operation. Returning home from meeting a friend for coffee, I found in his bed: one coffee mug (the broken handle and the dregs of the coffee were on the kitchen floor), a decimated spatula, a tattered New York Times, a torn-up milk jug (which had been drying out before going into...

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