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Marie Muscolino
News: Editors
Denali: A Moving Tribute to a Very Special Dog

Portland, OR based photographer and cinematographer Ben Moon’s dog, Denali, stood by him through thick and through thin. When Denali passed away last year, Ben decided to pay tribute to their relationship by creating this beautiful video. So, grab a box of tissues and make sure that your dog is nearby, because I guarantee that you will need to give her a teary hug after watching.

Denali from FELT SOUL MEDIA on Vimeo.

 

News: Guest Posts
Dogs Are The Best On A Snowy Day

I don’t know about you, but this is the time of year when the short days and dreary weather begin get a little old, so this video couldn’t have hit my e-mail inbox at a better time—it is the perfect wintertime attitude adjustment. Leave it to the dogs to remind us that life is always fun, even with a bite in the air and snow on the ground!

News: Guest Posts
From the Streets to the Gallery, All Thanks to the Dog
John Dolan and his dog George

Coming home a little earlier from nights out; waking up with the sun to get in that daily walk; adding a new vacuum to the top of your birthday wish list—things have a tendency to change when you bring a dog into your life. London based artist, John Dolan, was no exception to this rule. We recently read about Dolan and his dog, George, in an interview published by the Guardian earlier this month, and we were instantly enamored with the duo. 

Dolan, struggled with poverty, addiction and homelessness for most of his adult life, then, one day in 2009, a young homeless couple, about to move into an apartment, gave him George. And then things began to happen...

The Guardian writes:

Dolan was terrified to be entrusted with George, his first ever responsibility. "How was I going to cope with him? I couldn't even cope with myself," he says. But he'd loved the family dog, Butch, as a boy, and he noticed how George always looked him in the eye when he talked. They bonded and Dolan had a stark realisation: if he went to prison again, he would lose George. So he gave up crime. "It was only because I had the animal and he's a responsibility," he says, stroking George. "He's like my child in a sense and I feel obliged to keep a roof over his head and keep him warm."

In 2009, in an attempt to make an honest living, John turned to selling sketches of George to passers-by on the street for about $30 each. A few years later, his drawings were published in Shoreditch Unbound, a limited edition book showcasing East London's creative culture. After that, commissions started rolling in, including a request from gallery director, Richard Howard-Griffin. This is when his fledgling career as a working artist took off.

John now has a solo show under his belt (which happened to be a sell-out) and another just opened; he has collaborated with many high-profile street artists, including ROA, Stik and Tierry Noir; he has written a book about his life with George (an experience he likened to therapy), and, later this year, he'll cross the pond for a third solo show in Los Angeles. 

While John's life has seen a dramatic turn-around in the past few years, there is one thing that remains constant—George, the staffy-bull who saved him.

Again, from the Guardian:

"I feel like he's a guardian angel. If it hadn't been for him I'd have never picked up my pen," he says, stroking his companion.

Click HERE to see more of John Dolan's work. Keep up with John and George on Facebook.

 

News: Guest Posts
Pub Dogs

We are impressed and amused by the lengths this pup goes to convince his unwitting new pal to share his bag of chips. We have no trouble seeing any one of Bark dogs going to similar extents to "share" a snack.

Pub Dogs was written and animated by Ant Blades of London's Bird Box Studios. Check out the Bird Box Studio YouTube channel for more of Blade's delightful shorts.

News: Editors
Mavericks: The Big Wave That is Named for a Dog

There is a buzz of excitement radiating through the San Francisco Bay Area—the annual Mavericks Invitational, a big wave surf contest held 20 miles south of the city, is a go! And it's happening this weekend!

You might be asking yourself, "How, exactly, does this relate to dogs?" Well, you see, it's a rare event to visit a surf break that doesn't have a dog or two hanging on the beach waiting for her person to paddle in, and sometimes you'll come across a dog who is bold enough to paddle out to join the fun. In early March 1961, this is exactly what happened when surfers Alex Matienzo, Jim Thompson, and Dick Notmeyer decided to explore the big waves breaking about a 1/2-mile off the shore of Pillar Point, CA.

Alex Matienzo often brought his roommate's white German Shepherd, Maverick, to the beach, and Maverick was used to swimming with Matienzo when he was out surfing. On this particular day, Alex, Jim and Dick started to paddle out, leaving Maverick on shore, but the dog decided he wanted to be part of the crew and swam out to catch them. Matienzo (a wise man) was concerned for Maverick's safety and took the dog back to shore, leaving him tied to the car bumper in order to keep him from swimming out again into the dangerous surf.

The three young men had limited success that day, spending the morning surfing unremarkable overhead peaks about a 1/4-mile out. The conditions for surfing the much larger outside waves were simply too dangerous. The trio decided to name the wave break "Maverick" after the creature who seemed to have the most fun that day… before being tied to the bumper, of course.

The Mavericks Invitational has been held on those outside waves since 1999 (conditions permitting). This year, the contest is taking place on Sunday, January 20. You can watch a live feed of surfers battling Maverick's giant wave at MavericksInvitational.com.

 

 

Culture: Reviews
Bark Likes This: Glowdoggie
LED Collar

The air is crisp, the leaves are changing and the days are shorter—fall is here, and winter is right around the corner. This means two things: first, my dog Wally gets to bundle up in one of his many dapper sweaters; second, the sun sets well before we head out on our evening walk.

Walking after dark in my town is an adventure. The streets are dark and filled with drivers who cannot be bothered to watch out for a dark brown dog and his person. Needless to say, I was intrigued when the Glowdoggie™ LED lighted collar landed on my desk. Wally and I tried it out that very night.

Once I figured out how to turn it on (note: batteries down = on, batteries up = off), the Glowdoggie collar exceeded all of my expectations. The design is clean, the construction is top-notch and the LED lights are very bright. I feel infinitely safer during our evening walks now that Wally and I are highly visible to the drivers careening down the road. Plus, the collar is bright enough to double as a flashlight, making nighttime poop-scooping so much easier. Also worth noting: the collar is 100 percent waterproof, so it can be used in the wettest of weather or even on a midnight swim. The Glowdoggie LED collar is a must-have piece of winter dog-walking gear.

To purchase or to learn more about this great product, visit the Glowdoggie website at www.glowdoggie.com.

The Glowdoggie lighted collars are meant to be used in addition to your dog’s walking collar or harness. The collar is not designed to withstand any pulling force.

News: Guest Posts
“Wilfred”—If Dogs Could Talk

Over the years I’ve imagined up a full and complex human life for my dog. There is something about his personality that screams socially awkward 45-year-old still living at home with Mom. I can’t help it and it cracks me up, so needless to say, I was pretty excited when a friend told me about FX’s newest series, Wilfred.

Wilfred is about a troubled young man, Ryan (played by Elijah Wood of The Lord of the Rings fame) who forms a friendship with his neighbor’s dog, Wilfred. Sounds like the makings of a nice little show, right? Wrong. You see, while everyone else sees Wilfred as just a normal dog, Ryan sees a marijuana-smoking, Matt Damon-loving, tell-it-like-it-is Australian man dressed up in a dingy dog suit.

Wilfred, played by the hilarious Jason Gann, waltzes into Ryan’s life the morning after Ryan hits rock bottom, and immediately Wilfred begins pushing Ryan to step outside of himself with that special brand of in-your-face honesty that dogs have. Wilfred challenges Ryan to change, and Ryan does.

The humor is lowbrow (think The Hangover), so if that is not your cup of tea then Wilfred may not be the show for you. But, if you can see through the pot smoke and beyond the crass jokes, then you’ll catch a glimpse of something that all dog owners can relate to – dogs make people better.

I guarantee, after the episode is over, you’ll look over to your own best friend in a dog suit, give him a hug and wonder what he has to say about all of this.

Wilfred premiers tonight at 10 pm on FX.

News: Guest Posts
Channel Fido’s Inner Felix
Thrill your dog with a Chase It Pet Toy.

Do you have a dog who would give his right paw to chase after a squirrel, a cat or a plastic shopping bag fluttering down the street? I do, his name is Wally, and Wally loves his Chase It Pet Toy. The Chase It is simple in concept: You hang onto the end of the pole and flip around the stuffie, which taps into the dog’s instinctual drive to chase small, fast-moving prey. The ensuing game is hilarious to watch (ever see a canine back-flip?) and physically exhausting for the pup. A game of Chase It wears out my high energy Pit Bull Terrier in twenty minutes, which makes the Chase It Pet Toy a godsend for those mornings when I choose to hit the snooze button instead of the road for our predawn walk.

 

Check out the Chase It Pet Toy in action:
 

Dog's Life: Humane
The Rescue Who Rescued Me
Enter to win 10,000 meals for the animal shelter of your choice!

Fetch! Pet Care, along with The Bark, Halo Purely for Pets and Freekibble.com are celebrating the season by hosting the Rescue Who Rescued Me contest.

Enter your pet’s photo or video on Fetch! Pet Care’s Facebook Fan page and tell us how you saved her through rescue or adoption. Enter now through December 18, then let the voting begin! Tell your friends, family and colleagues to vote for your entry December 19 through January 20.

The entry with the most votes will appear in the spring issue of The Bark, plus the animal shelter of the winner’s choice will get 10,000 meals (2,500 pounds) of Halo Spot’s Stew provided by FreeKibble.com.

Good Dog: Activities & Sports
K9 Nose Work: Train Your Dog's Scenting Abilities

It’s what all the cool dogs are doing! Tapping into a dog’s natural ability to smell and his inherent drive to hunt, Nose Work is a great sport for dogs of all shapes, sizes and temperaments. I’m taking Nose Work classes with my dog, Wally, and we are having a blast! Be sure to sniff out the article on K9 Nose Work in Bark’s summer issue. Here is a video of Wally searching for a bait bag filled with treats. Find it, Wally!