For the final issue of 2014, we are tickled to have Hilary Swank (and her dogs, Rumi and Kai) on the cover. While it’s been our custom for all-dog covers, we’re going “All Star” here because we were inspired by Hilary’s co-producing a rescue extravaganza on Thanksgiving evening called Fox’s Cause for Paws: An All-Star Dog Special. I talk with her about her rescue work and about how dogs have inspired her and what she is hoping for in this remarkable program. Be sure to tune into Fox from 8 to 10 that evening. We have been digging around for answers to questions that have long puzzled us. Have you ever wondered if gender factors into dog training—if women approach it differently than men? We did, so we asked our behavior specialist Karen London to look into it. Then there is the question of the why and when dogs became domesticated. While the definitive answer isn’t in yet, Jane Brackman reports researchers sing data gleaned from prehistoric burial sites to shed light on the millennia-old dog/human bond.
Then, there’s the sibling thing. When we’re looking at a passel of puppies, it’s so easy to think, Why not just take two? Jeff Stallings explores that question and we found his answer to be spot on.
Donna Jackel looks at the importance of shelter play groups, part of a recent program that gives dogs a chance to blossom and, one hopes, increases adoption rates. Another way of improving the lives of shelter dogs is covered by long-time columnist Lee Harrington, who focuses on her local shelter’s amazing Animal Reiki practitioner.
On the “dogs helping people” front, Amy Kantor, VMD, examines NYPD K-9 teams and the deep bonds police officers have with their canine partners, and contributing editor Rebecca Wallick follows a study that aims to answer the question, “Do sick children benefit from animal-assisted therapy?”
Rounding out this issue’s dog-pourri, Meghan Lewit shares a millennial’s perspective. And, Meghan Daum again graces us with her, “The Gift of a Great Dog,” and reminds us of the need to make room in our hearts. Kevin Roberts tells us what gets him jazzed about skijoring (thrilling at both ends of the bungee!), and we go up to the Arctic Circle with Leah McFail on a Husky-infused Lapland Workaway program. In the good-eats category, our “turkey-burger topper” recipe is nutritionally deconstructed, and we talk with esteemed cookbook editor (she was Julia Child’s editor) Judith Jones about home-cooking for herself and her pup. And, in what is likely a first for a dog magazine, we welcome our new comic book editor-at-large, Mark Peters, who recommends a well-drawn prizewinner written entirely in “dog.”
We know you’re busy making lists, and suggest you start at BarkGoods, our new store. We’ve gathered some of the best-designed, most useful products around, and we’re always expanding the offerings. Visit often and take advantage of our rewards program.
Finally, for a truly feel-good gift, pencil in time on your calendar for a visit to your local shelter: drop off toys or gently used collars and leashes, visit with the dogs, take one for a walk or, even better, foster. (Your dog might love a new playmate!)
We wish everyone a joyous and peace-filled season.
P.S. We are dedicating this issue to Dr. Sophia Yin, her work in positive reinforcement training affected the lives of untold thousands. Her generous and compassionate spirit is sorely missed. Please read tributes and recollections from those whose lives she touched.
Hilary Swank: Starring in All-Star Dog Special
Digging Up Bones: What can archeology tells us about the “connection” origins. By Jane Brackman, PhD
Men, Women and Dog Training: What’s gender have to do with it? By Karen B. London, PhD
Postscript: Grace Chon’s Zoey and Jasper.
Serious Play: Playgroups are enriching lives and reducing stress for dogs in shelters. By Donna Jackel
Growing Up: Millennials take on caring for another, furry, someone. By Meghan Lewit
Animal-Assisted Therapy: Do sick children benefit? By Rebecca Wallick
On The Job: NYPD’s K-9 teams are partnerships bound by loyalty. By Amy Kantor, VMD
The Arctic Circle, with Dogs: Volunteering with Huskies in Lapland. By Leah McFail
The Gift of a Great Dog: Recognizing the “one” but taking on another. By Meghan Daum
It’s a Dog’s Life
We’re about to usher in fall, our very favorite season, and are so relieved to bid farewell to summer’s hot, slow days. Like yours, no doubt, our dogs really do seem to perk up in the crisp autumn air. We have an especially content-rich issue for you. Among our new contributors is Sara Greenslit, DVM, who will be covering the integrative veterinary front; she leads off with an article on the “hot” topic of the gut and about its relationship to inflammatory bowel disease. Jessica Hekman, DVM, looks into the studies that examining the reliability of behavior-assessment tests, which many shelters use to make life-and-death decisions about a dog’s future. Martha Connors takes a look at current thinking on spay/neuter; while in terms of the big picture, it’s certainly the most effective way to reduce the number of homeless dogs, individual dog guardians now have other options and issues to consider.
Recently, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Laurel Braitman, author of the highly recommended book Animal Madness; we talked about her investigations into commonalities in mental health issues among humans, canines and other species. Another first-time Bark contributor, Jessica Miller, looks at anxious-dog behavior and provides pointers on how to navigate life with a nervous pup, while Karen London addresses the commonly held belief that all fearful dogs have been abused (hint: not true).
Our happy cover dogs, Indie and Bogart, the Beagles, are poster pups for the successful rehoming of lab dogs, and for canine resiliency. They highlight our feature piece by Konnie LeMay reporting on the Beagle Freedom Project, a rescue group that works with the friendly, gentle dogs so commonly used as test subjects; many of the group’s charges, who have spent their lives in kennels, have never walked on grass or had any loving attention from a human. We welcome this opportunity to showcase the work being done by many humane groups in supporting legislation that allows for rehoming of lab companion animals.
It’s great to have acclaimed writer Susan Straight back in the magazine with her account of how an ordinary dog walk along the river turned into a too-close-for-comfort encounter with her dog’s canid cousins. Ben Spencer recalls a white-knuckle race to the vet ER with his bee-stung pup, and Ellen Cooney reveals a secret training technique she employed with her rescue dog (be sure to pick up her new novel, Mountaintop School for Dogs, one of our year’s-best lit picks).
We hope you enjoy this, our 79th issue, and stick around for many more. Explore all things dog, check out our new store, Barkgoods.com, and spread the word that The Bark is the best place to celebrate the world’s oldest friendship! On that front, we would like to thank all of our “fans” who pushed our Facebook page up to, and beyond 280,000—with your help, let’s see if that mark can be doubled by 2015!
It’s a Dog’s Life
Perfect for the summertime, we have oodles of good reading in store for you. From first-time book author Matthew Gilbert, a charming look at his Boston dog park scene and a good reminder that snap judgments can snap back in a positive way, and that letting go of assumptions can lead the way to a new attitude. Gail Caldwell is back with another memorable memoir, this time including a jumpstart to her life with a new pup. David Koff supplies a classic “how I found my dog” story, and Joshunda Sanders offers insights on how becoming a dog person helped her revise her own perceptions about the black community’s relationship with dogs. Jill Smolowe shows us that having a daily routine to look forward to is valuable to those on both ends of the leash. Finally, be sure to check out our editors’ top-pick summertime reading roundup. Also on deck: Veterinarian Ilana Strubel has tips on how to get—or keep—the pounds off your pup, and we have an excerpt from an excellent new book by Linda Case, who explains what to look for (and ask for) when reading pet food labels. Then, imagine paddling a canoe down the Mississippi with a canine co-pilot and find out how Lucas Will and Tischer fared on their more than 2,000-mile adventure. For more outdoor inspiration, Suzanne Roberts recounts a backpacking expedition with her husband and their dog, Ely, along a challenging section of the Pacific Crest Trail. On the “news you can use” front, Sheila Pell investigates the proliferation of ticks (climate change strikes again!) and what we can do to ward them off us and our dogs. We also check out stem cell and hyperbaric oxygen therapies and backyard barbecue do’s and don’ts, and serve up an easy recipe for delicious and nutritious whole-grain peanut butter dog cookies. Mardi Richmond reports on what happened when a top guide dog–training organization transitioned to clickers, and Donna Jackel looks at worthy, locally based humane groups that are making remarkable impacts on their communities. We have important safety tips about summertime activities, and many reader-supplied ideas on where to find the best off-the-beaten-track adventures this season.
So, settle yourself and your dog in a cool, shady spot and dig into the summer issue. We think you’ll find lots to ponder and put to use.Features Tick Talk Is climate change behind the rise in the numbers of ticks and the diseases they bring? By Sheila Pell Dog Paddling the Mighty Mississippi Down the river with a dog. By Lucas Will Backcountry Trek A dog with a job makes a perfect hiking partner. By Suzanne Roberts Label Smarts Ways to improve your dog-food-selection skills. By Linda Case On View In the Company of Cats and Dogs. By Cameron Woo Tula The challenges and rewards of a new pup. By Gail Caldwell Cell Phone Lady Dog parks are full of pleasant interludes. By Matthew Gilbert Walking Misty Daily routines provide welcome relief at both ends of the leash. By Jill Smolowe Finding Carson A stray meets her match. By David Koff Color-blind Love Opening our eyes to stereotypes and dispelling racial myths. By Joshunda Sanders DogPatch Guest Editorial: Go Walk Shelter Dogs Bark’s Summer Tips Travel—ideas from our readers. Dogfroyo; Instant harness; Tails to Trails Last Chance IPA; Keeping it clean; Beware Compost SMILING DOGS: Simply irresistible Healing oxygen by Susan Tasaki Recipe: Whole Grain Peanut Butter Cookies Grooming: Summer Shedding Secrets Pop Art: Vintage Labels It’s A Dog’s Life THEATRE: Of Mice and Men + dog by Amy Kantor, DVM HEALTH: Pounds be Gone Help your pup shed excess weight. By Ilana Strubel, DVM HEALTH: Self Healing Stem Cells. By Megan Cassels-Conway, DVM SECOND OPINION: The Barbecue Blues Tips. By Nick Trout, DVM BEHAVIOR: Lessons learned from aggression cases. By Karen B. London, PhD WORKING DOGS: Clicker training conversion. By Mardi Richmond WELFARE: Grassroots Animal Welfare: Helping dogs, one community at a time. By Donna Jackel REVIEWS: Off the Leash by Matthew Gilbert; New Life, No Instructions by Gail Caldwell; A Dog’s History of the World by Laura Hobgood-Oster; From Birdbrained to Brilliant by Dawn Antoniak-Mitchell; Paw and Order by Spencer Quinn; The Mountaintop School for Dogs by Ellen Cooney; Citizen Canine by David Grimm; Puppy Savvy by Barbara Shumannfang ENDPIECE: Murphy: A most unusual adoption arrangement. By Lisa Leshaw
With this Spring issue, we return to what made The Bark special when we began publishing almost two decades ago. We’ve often been called The New Yorker for dog lovers, probably because we tend to favor well-crafted, long form narrative essays and expository journalism. An essay, “Is It Time?” by Suzanne Roberts is the perfect example; when considering that question, the one we all dread, a longer treatment works best. As a perfect complement to Roberts’ piece, Katherine Goldberg, DVM, shares her experience as a hospice-care practitioner. It’s never easy to be confronted with the questions raised in these stories, but we believe you will be better equipped to do so after reading them. John Woestendiek tackles another question we all grapple with in “Finding Dr. Right”; as background, we asked you to tell us what you thought of your vets, what they might be missing and what they got just right. Some of you had nothing but praise, but like me, others seem to still be in search of that almost-perfect one. We also have an inspiring story from Melissa Fay Greene about how a little rescue Terrier helped her son during his recovery from cancer. And Terry Davis’ comedic “dog creationist” story, “Canis Mythicus,” is sure to delight and cause you to wonder how it did actually all come about. In the “life with dogs” category, Karen London considers ongoing research on tail wagging, an activity that not only reveals dogs’ inner attitudes but also shows that, like us, they have the left/right-hemisphere thing going on. Next, a young Polish couple tell us about a remarkable Himalayan trek they took with their dog; their photos of this trip are stunning and may make you long for similar adventures. And if you’re concerned about your dog’s vaccination schedule, Mardi Richmond explains the titer alternatives. We learn that dogs can aid in our recovery, and we examine the sanctuary trend in sheltering and discover how dogs respond to smooth tunes. Plus tips from an expert traveler, lacey crafts from a textile artist and so much more. Bark is a magazine for people who not only love dogs but also have an insatiable desire to learn about them. It has always been our goal to fulfill that need. So, without further ado, pick up a copy of the first issue of 2014 and enjoy!
It’s A Dog’s Life
A Winter Wonderland
Our Winter/Holiday issue is sure to delight dog lovers. We have an exclusive, “at-home” feature on William Wegman and his remarkable dogs. Our photo-journalist, Kimberly Wang, was invited to spend time with the Wegman clan at their Maine retreat and came away with a wonderfully intimate story and engaging photos of her visit. (How does that man get his dogs to hold those poses?) Lee Harrington is back with one of her best takes ever on life with Chloe who is spending a lot more time in one of her many beds. In our continuing “Lost & Found” series, we have an essay by Katherine Goldberg, DVM, about how it feels when a dog is missing—a traumatic low in the life of a dog lover that’s almost, but not quite, worth the reunion high. Yvonne Zipter describes the way a fostered Greyhound turned a corner and found peace in her new life. Julie Hecht asks six “great minds” for their thoughts on dogs; their answers and insights are truly fascinating. Karen London shows us how to keep our dogs healthy, happy and fit. Vet Shea Cox offers her “Fifty Shades of Brown” to answer one of the most the popular dog-related search questions on the web (you can guess what it is); we learn what the colors mean and which deserve more scrutiny. We meet the very clever Girl Scout who struck gold with both an award and an inventive way for dogs to assist autistic children. Then we look at reasons for the growing concern about genetically modified (GMO) food; is there a case for the impacts GM crops might have on the health of our dogs? We find out how important SAR dogs are in avalanche/skiing country, and share our suggestions for great winter wonderland spots to visit (safely) with your pup. Be sure to read our newest dog park profile, whip up a simple turkey recipe and DIY textiles. We also have fabulous gift suggestions, and incredible holiday giveaways—including elegant and comfy dog beds. Be sure to see our very special gift subscription offers, buy two and get the third for only $1! As always, we have something for everyone, so hope you enjoy.
Happy Holidays: A case for personalizing greetings. By Meghan Daum
Baby Love: A surprise acceptance for a new arrival. By Hinda Mandell
A Loving Tribute to Our Senior Best Friends Photography by Garry Gross, text by Steve Duno
Fifty Shades of Brown: The Scoop on Poop
Bringing Up Blondie: A Greyhound finds her perfect match. By Yvonne Zipter
Chloe Chronicles: Letting Sleeping Dogs Lie
Great Thinkers on Dogs: Six leading canine researchers talk about their work. By Julie Hecht
Finding Sydney: A former street dog tests her person’s resolve. By Katherine Goldberg, DVM
It’s a Dog’s Life
Travel: Choice Spots for Winter Escapes. By JoAnna Lou
Recipe: Fast, easy and nutritious turkey feast. By Christine Filardi
Petcare: When Your Dog Can’t Go with You. By James Dziezynski
Second Opinion: Ensuring Quality Health Care. By Nick Trout, DVM
Assistance: Jumping for Joy, a program for children with special needs. By Kathie Meier
Behavior: Run for Your (Quality of) Life Strategies for keeping your dog healthy, happy and fit. By Karen B. London, PhD
Food Safety: GMO: Are genetically modified crops safe? By Sheila Pell
Working Dogs: Avalanche SAR Canines Making slopes safer for everyone. By Jayme Moye
Our 75th issue! Satos, Travel and Homemade Kibble
Welcome to our 75th issue. The importance of adoption has long been a critical aspect of our agenda, and in this issue, we showcase innovative sheltering programs. We first covered the plight of satos, stray dogs of Puerto Rico, 10 years ago, and it’s encouraging to learn that progress is being made by groups like Pets Alive Puerto Rico. John Woestendiek examines college programs that reward students for fostering dogs and cats in their dorm rooms, and David Grimm takes us a on a visit to a unique Louisiana prison-shelter program. Elaine Sichel, prizewinner in our humor-writing contest, also perfectly complements this theme; in a lighthearted way, she makes it clear that we’re the winners when we adopt shelter dogs. Jennifer Senski, who is doing her PhD dissertation on the state of sheltering, puts out a call to the shelter community for assistance with data collection.
On other fronts, in “Body Language,” Jane Brackman considers the ways dated and misapplied definitions have been used to set breed standards, and Karen London tells us why it’s important that dogs learn to focus. Plus we discover that autumn is the perfect time to visit Minnesota’s scenic Highway 61, with a drive along Lake Superior. Pieces on the value of probiotics, a recipe for homemade kibble, a home-visiting vet and the ways dog “germs” make our homes healthier round out the issue. We also have some great book picks that will help us learn more about how smart our dogs truly can be—and a new collection from our favorite poet, Mary Oliver. Without further ado, then, I invite you to subscribe to The Bark or get your copy of the fall issue, dig in and enjoy the reading.
Magazine: 2005 & Earlier
A full issue featuring Dogs in Cartoons. Including Patrick McDonnell, Lynda Barry, John Callahan, Edward Koren, Art Spiegelman and Odes to Goofy, Barfy, and Earl. Writings by Rick Bass and Barnaby Conrad III. Plus Cynthia Heimel and Ian Shoales Howl at the Moon.
In This Issue:
Magazine: 2005 & Earlier
Those of you who have known us back in our tabloid days have witness our various transformations are probably marveling at our latest. To launch the new-year-decade-century-millennium, The Bark is putting the dog in grand style with new paper and plenty of color. But rest assured the gloss hasn’t gone to our heads. To paraphrase a well-known crooner, we gotta be us!
In This Issue:
Magazine: 2005 & Earlier
Welcome to The Bark’s second annual literature issue, bringing you—The Dogerati —a collection of works by writers and artists in exploration of the miraculous relationship between humans and dogs.
In This Issue:
Magazine: 2005 & Earlier
Can you believe it? The Bark has a new ‘do – looks pretty spiffy, don’t you think? We regret letting our larger, tabloid format go, but in order to keep pace in the publishing world and to get ourselves onto more newsstands, we’ve had a style makeover. We hope you approve. Many of you will find this smaller size easier to read, especially with your dog’s head resting on your lap. But besides the new format, we are still the same Bark, bringing you the best contemporary dog culture in the work of leading writers and artists such as Anne Lamott, Mark Derr, Louise Rafkin, Mike Paterniti, Mark Ulriksen and Paul Auster.
In This Issue:
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