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Good Dog: Behavior & Training
H*MPING
Why do they do it?
Humping Pugs
On a beautiful, warm afternoon, I watched a group of dogs frolic in a dog park. Suddenly, I heard a woman’s high-pitched yelp, followed by the pounding of human feet. There was no need to look; it was obviously about humping, which we can also refer to as mounting. Dogs hump the air, they mount pillows and blankets, and they can be found poised behind the neighbor’s dog or befriending Uncle Joe’s...
Blog: Karen B. London
Visiting a Therapy Dog Class
Strangers with a purpose
My family was recently invited to attend a dog therapy class. The goal was to provide the dogs an opportunity to practice being on their best, most friendly behavior when presented with strangers, even if those strangers were behaving in unusual ways. We were particularly welcome visitors because our family includes two boys, ages 7 and 8. Finding parents willing to bring their young kids around...
Blog: Karen B. London
Sometimes Dogs Aren’t Sad
They’re just resting
It’s common to misinterpret dogs’ signals and think that they mean something that they don’t. Examples of this abound with everything from the common statement by people who are not overly dog savvy that the dog must be friendly because he’s wagging his tail, to the more complex issues related to the meaning of barking and other vocalizations. Lately, I’ve noticed that many people look at a dog...
Blog: Karen B. London
Social Gaffes
A consequence of adoring dogs
I’m pretty sure that as a child, I offended some friends when I went to their houses to play and paid more attention to the dog than to anyone else. Though I’ve always been social with people, this is a gaffe I made repeatedly. I never meant to be rude. It’s just that the dogs were so captivating that I couldn’t help myself. It wasn’t only in childhood that I attended to dogs first and foremost...
Magazine: 2012
Dogs Are Definitely Welcome
Editor’s Letter
Claudia Kawcynska & Charlie the dog
We’re easing our way into another summer season, tuning up for vacation flings, scoping out dog-friendly resorts and venues, and hoping to find time to settle back and simply enjoy a few peaceful moments with our dogs. As our cover proclaims, at long last, I went to New York for a much-anticipated visit with the “Daily Show” dogs. We had put out a few feelers earlier this year, and some of you...
Blog: Karen B. London
Dandelion Dog
She helps me find weeds
Yesterday I was searching for dandelions to yank from my lawn and garden with Schultize, a dog who is staying with us for a couple of weeks. After about 10 minutes of pulling these weeds, Schultize was consistently in my way. Several times, I found myself having to wait for her to move so I could use my weeding tool without risk of hurting her. She just kept sitting right near a dandelion. At...
Blog: JoAnna Lou
Conflicting Gestures of Affection
Hugs have the opposite meaning to dogs
As a kid, I remember watching the emotional scene in the movie Homeward Bound and seeing the oldest boy hug his Golden Retriever, Shadow, upon being reunited. I also remember reenacting the scene many times with my poor cat (unfortunately for the cat, I didn't have a dog when I was younger). We regard our pets like family, so hugging them feels natural. According to a recent survey, 30 percent...
Blog: Guest Posts
It’s Raining Cows and Dogs [Video]
The play’s the thing for these mismatched pals
We know dogs are pros at crossing the species barrier, especially when it comes to fun. But it’s still surprising and enlightening to watch it happen. A friend of The Bark recently sent us a couple videos of a friend’s German Wirehaired Pointers and Jersey cows playing together—and we had to share them. Here’s another. ►Also, for more on dogs with unusual playmates, check out today’s story by...
Blog: Guest Posts
The Seal Who Played with Dogs
Memories of cross-species games
Butch was my seal. Or so I fantasized, and bragged to my grade school friends. His origins, age—even his true sex and name—were a mystery. But he was real. He wore a faded collar that had become painfully tight, creating a ring of raw red flesh, like a gruesome necklace he couldn’t unclasp. My own, childishly romantic theory was that he had escaped from a traveling circus. It was the 1960s, and...
Blog: Guest Posts
The National Museum of Animals & Society
A great place to explore and enrich our interrelationships with other animals
“…animals are always the observed. The fact that they can observe us has lost all significance.” (John Berger, About Looking, 1980) Our relationships with other nonhuman animals (aka animals) move us all over the place. We love some, hate others and are indifferent to a wide range of fascinating species. Animals intrigue and inspire us and as we inquire about who they are we learn much about who...

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