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Welcome to our 20th anniversary year kick-off issue. We are showcasing reader’s dogs on all four of this year’s covers—so we lead off Clementine, who not only has what it takes to be the perfect studio model—calm, charm and an endearing smile—but also, a compelling and inspiring backstory . Don’t forget to enter your dog in our cover dog contest, thebark.com/coverdog .
Patricia McConnell set a high bar for writing about the behavior of dogs and their people with The Other End of the Leash ; she followed up with numerous self-published training books and an almost 10-year stint as Bark’s behavior columnist. We talk with her about her new memoir, The Education of Will , and provide you with a preview.
Amy Sutherland, also has a new book, Rescuing Penny Jane, in which she looks at shelter dogs and the people who care for them. She offers perceptive profiles and interviews with leading experts about best practices to increase adoption rates and decrease the number of unnecessary deaths in shelters. We talk with her as well, and have an excerpt from her engrossing book.
As we’ve been doing for the past 20 years, we dive deep into topics that we believe have special significance or long-lasting importance to dog lovers. Vet care tops that list, which is why we arranged to reprint a (very) long form journalism piece from Bloomberg Businessweek  about increasing corporate control in the vet healthcare sector.
Rebecca Wallick, our legal expert, looks at the thorny issue of how the law handles what happens to pets when people divorce. Then we learn what a coalition of off-leash recreation groups discovered when they used the Freedom of Information Act to force the National Park Service to provide documents used to determine a change in dog rules at a national recreational area. See the results on woofieleaks.com . Kama Brown fills us in on the top 10 talking points in the training world , and Cynthia Howle looks at what great exercise partners our dogs can be, with tips that go well beyond walks. Globetrotting Jen Sotolongo shares her tips on finding dog-friendly inns on the go. In this issue we are showcasing a gem from our archives, with Ann Patchett’s lovely “On Responsibility ,” that originally appeared in our 2003.
We also scope out how to cope with flea allergies; how better diets might support longer and healthier lives, and why simple names might not really define what is going on with your dogs. Dig in!
In Conversation with Patricia McConnell, PhD, who tells us what inspired her memoir, The Education of Will (with an excerpt from the book)
Who’s Adoptable?: Shelter stress takes can take its toll on dogs. By Amy Sutherland
Talking with Amy Sutherland about shelter dogs and her book, Rescuing Penny Jane
Field Notes: Wildlife researcher recalls his backcounty co-pilot. By L. Jack Lyon
Vet Care, Incorporated: Does a one-size-fits-all-approach work for our dogs? By Jason Clenfield
Citizens Fight Back: Agency stacks the deck against dog walkers. By Sally Stephens
Best of Bark: On Responsibility—Caring for two loves. By Ann Patchett
Illuminating Medieval Hunting Dogs: On the nature and care of 14th-century dogs. By Linda S. Slusser
IT’S A DOG’S LIFE
TRAVEL: Finding Dog-friendly Accommodations on the Go By Jen Sotolongo
ACTIVITIES: Dogs Make Great Exercise Partners By Cynthia Howle
WELLNESS: Scratch! Flea allergy dermatitis and what to do about it. By Sara Greenslit, DVM, CVA
HEALTH: Optimal Nutrition Do better diets support longer lives? By Donna Raditic, DVM, DACVN, CVA
BEHAVIOR: Beware of Labels: Simple names can create complex problems. By Karen B. London, PhD
LAW: Dogs and Divorce: What happens to pets when couples untie the knot? By Rebecca Wallick
TRAINING: Talking Points : Professional dog trainers are asking new questions. By Kama Brown, CPDT-KA
MASTERWORKS: Dogs at the Met Venerable NYC museum open its archives—look what we found!
ENDPIECE: Lucky the Dog By Rob Johnsen
ORGANIZATIONS THAT MATTER: Animal Care Sanctuary Celebrates 50 Years!
REVIEWS Rescuing Penny Jane, The Education of Will, The Domestic Dog
Guest Editorial: Soi Dog Foundation
How to Draw Dogs and Puppies
Smiling Dogs: Always Irresistible
Finding Shelter: Jesse Freidin’s Portraits
Cover Dog: Clementine