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Claudia Kawczynska

Claudia Kawczynska is The Bark's co-founder and Editor-in-Chief.

News: Editors
Jon Stewart Walking the Dog

So sweet to see that Jon Stewart walking his three-legged dog, Champ is being written about by the online media, from Huffiington Post  to E-Online . We certainly know just how great a dog lover Stewart is, after being invited to spend a whole day behind the scenes at the Daily Show’s office last year. We were so inspired by their approach to a dog friendly workplace—with free-range dogs integral to the unique office ambience—that we awarded them our first Best Place to Work award. Do check out the slideshow of Champ and Jon Stewart.

 

Culture: Reviews
Editor’s Picks: 25 Good Reads
From the classics to entertaining beach books

Now that summer and its long, warm days have arrived, we hope you find time to catch up on your reading. We would like to suggest our picks for a well-versed “dog culture” reading roster. These 25 books will enhance your understanding of your dog, along with entertaining and inspiring you. Enjoy!

Non-fiction/Memoir

Colter by Rick Bass A beautifully written elegy about “the best dog” ever, Bass captures the essence of this unforgettable dog’s intense drive.

Dog Walks Man, a collection of humorous and absorbing essays by John Zeaman, conveys how the routine act of dog-walking can connect us to the joys of the natural world.

Dog Years, by Mark Doty. A prize-winning poet and memoirist, Doty explores the complicated landscape of love and loss.

Eminent Dogs, Dangerous Men by Donald McCaig. You don’t need to be a Border Collie admirer to be enthralled by McCaig’s storytelling of his journey to Scotland to explore what is behind the mystery of these hardworking dogs and their human handlers.

Let’s Take the Long Way Home, a memorable memoir by Gail Caldwell about her friendship with the late Caroline Knapp (Pack of Two); their dogs brought these two writers together, and a devoted friendship followed.

Pack of Two by Caroline Knapp. Written 15 years ago, this was one of the first, and still the best, explorations of the dog/human intricate bond in modern life.

Rex and the City, by Lee Harrington. A  “behaviorally-challenged” rescue dog might be more than a NYC couple can handle. But when it comes to exploring what it takes for “newbies” to learn about co-existing with a canine (and with each other), this is one of the funniest accounts of the journey.

Scent of the Missing by Susannah Charleson. A fascinating memoir of the adventures of a Search and Rescue pup and how both she and her human partner mastered the course together.

A Small Furry Prayer: Dog Rescue and the Meaning of Life by Steven Kotler is part Hunter Thompson part Carlos Castaneda but mostly so original that it’s difficult to peg. A fascinating examination of the “cult and culture” of dog rescue.

Dog Studies

Bones Would Rain from the Sky by Suzaznne Clothier. An analysis of the mind and motives of dogs, and a lesson in how to speak their language.

In Dog Sense, animal behaviorist John Bradshaw outlines what we can expect from our co-pilots as well as what they need to live harmoniously with us.

Dog’s Best Friend. Mark Derr writes about the “culture of the dog” like no one else. He goes well beyond the in’s and out’s of breeding and training examining all aspects about what makes our friendship with dogs tick.

The Hidden Life of Dogs: a book made famous for the number of miles that Elizabeth Marshall Thomas clocked while tracking a Husky on his daily forays in her anthropological quest to answer “What do dogs really want?”

Inside of a Dog by Alexandra Horowitz is a fascinating journey into the dog’s rich sensory world, providing valuable insights into what it’s like to be a dog.

Man Meets Dog was first published over fifty years ago, becoming a classic that every dog lover should read by the Nobel Prize-winner, Konrad Lorenz. 

Patricia McConnell, has written many books decoding the mysteries of canine behavior, including The Other End of the Leash, on why we behave as we do around our dogs and how it affects them, and, Tales of Two Species, a collection of her Bark columns.

Speaking for Spot, by Nancy Kay, DVM. Direct, empathetic and absolutely invaluable advice on how to successfully advocate for your dog.

Novels

Garth Stein’s novel, The Art of Racing in the Rain, is a beautifully crafted tale of the wonders and absurdities of human life as only a dog could describe them

My Dog Tulip by J.R. Ackerley This unforgettable memoir of a much-loved dog has no equal—be sure to read the edition with the insightful introduction by Elizabeth Marshall Thomas.

The New Yorkers by Cathleen Schine. Set in the microcosmic world of a New York neighborhood—dogs are the stars of this show.

The Patron Saint of Lost Dogs by Nick Trout, DVM. A small-town vet comes to terms with his career change and the importance of friendship and community.

Timbuktu by Paul Auster. Mr. Bones, “a mutt of no particular worth or distinction,” narrates this unforgettable and poignant tale.

Dog-Flavored Mystery Series

David Rosenfelt’s Andy Carpenter is a reluctant attorney whose real passions are dog rescue and his Golden Retriever, Tara. Unleashed is the most recent entry.

In Spencer Quinn’s “Chet and Bernie” mysteries, narrated by Chet the dog, comments on the way dogs see the world ring true (and will make you smile). The fifth book, A Fist Full of Collars, is his most recent.

Our long-time favorite, Susan Conant, released a new “Holly Winter” thank goodness; A Brute Strength is number 19 in the series featuring the Malamute-loving dog writer and, of course, her favorite dogs.

News: Editors
Tax Deductions for Pets

I know that this tip is a little late for tax day this year, but this is something definitely to consider for next year. A friend passed along this article about how a landmark 2011 U.S. tax court decision allows deductions for fostering dogs and cats.

“In Jan Van Dusen v. Commissioner, an Oakland-based cat lady successfully argued that the expense of caring for dozens of stray felines for a local rescue group should be deductible as a charitable contribution.

Any unreimbursed expenses, such as food or medical bills, have to be directly related to animal care, said Richard Panick, a spokesman for the IRS.”

Keeping your receipts is key, and if you claim more than $250 you will need a verification letter from the 501(c)3 organization.

Also good to note for those who raise puppies for service dog organizations, they also qualify for itemized deductions.

And while adoption fees aren’t deductible, if you offer a larger donation than just the adoption fee, that “extra tip” is deductible.

See other pet-related deductibles in this article.

News: Editors
Muttville: Senior Dog Rescue at its Finest

We got the following story from the good folks at Muttville, a remarkable senior dog rescue organization in San Francisco. They publish wonderful stories from their adopters about their new senior pups and this one, by Tricia about her dear Winston was especially inspirational. Hopefully this will motivate you to consider opening up your heart to a homeless senior dog.

Oh, Winston. You are: hungry, happy, waggy, ridiculous, hungry, sweet, grumpy, hilarious, hungry, adorable, cute, impatient, hungry, endearing, charming, resilient, hungry, spunky, excitable, friendly, hungry and, without a doubt, unique.

When I first saw Winston on Muttville’s website in June of 2011, I was immediately smitten. I had never seen a dog quite like him before. Or since.

I still get a little sad when I think about his kennel card from the shelter he was at before coming to Muttville. STRAY HOLD ONLY – NOT RECOMMENDED FOR ADOPTION. Yeah, he’s old. Yeah, he’s got two teeth. Yeah, he’s got some health issues. Yeah, he seems pretty pathetic at first glance. I’m just so grateful that Muttville saw past all of that. It’s now two years later and he’s more excitable and spunky than either of my other two Chihuahuas, both of whom are considerably younger.

Winston is so unique in both appearance and personality. He’s been compared to a lemur, a sugar glider, a sloth, a badger. He does not, however, resemble an American Water Spaniel, which is what came up in his DNA test. I’m pretty sure Winston would sink like a stone if submerged in water.

I met my boyfriend after Winston entered my life. He has never been a big animal person and definitely not a Chihuahua aficionado. Winston has changed all that. He recently mentioned that he can’t believe that Winston was in foster care for four whole months prior to me adopting him. “I can’t believe that people weren’t lining up to adopt a dog like him.” I can’t believe it either. I was the lucky one.

I know that it is not uncommon for people to be quite incredulous at the idea of adopting a senior dog, especially one like Winston. They are put off at the idea of becoming attached to something that, most likely, won’t be around for a terribly long time. I’m of the opinion that it’s a very selfish way to look at it. Is the prospect of being upset at the passing of a pet more important than giving that pet a good life? Your feelings are more important than saving an animal’s life? Really!? I don’t think so. I’ve been through it before and I know what it’s like. I know that when it’s Winston’s time to go, the pain will be nearly unbearable. But it will be bearable. Just bearable enough to offer a home to another senior dog that got dealt a bad hand in life.

And yes, Winston is always hungry.

See Winston's Facebook page

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Recall: Natura Expands Recall, Again.

This following was posted on the Natura Pet food site on 4/19/2013.

Contact: Natura Pet Consumer Relations – 800-224-6123

Natura Pet Expands Voluntary Recall of Dry Pet Foods

Due to Possible Health Risk

FREMONT, NEBRASKA, April 19, 2013

–Natura Pet Products is voluntarily expanding its March 29, 2013 recall of dry pet foods because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella. The expanded recall now includes all dry pet food products and treats with expiration dates prior to and including March 24, 2014. Please see the table below for details of affected products.

Salmonella can affect animals eating the products and there is risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these products.

Healthy people infected with Salmonella should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. Rarely, Salmonella

can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract symptoms.

Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers.

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans. If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.

Sampling conducted by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and the Georgia Department of Agriculture confirmed the presence of Salmonella in additional dry pet food and a cat pet treat. In an abundance of caution, Natura is also recalling product made in the surrounding timeframe. This action affects dry pet foods and treats only; no canned wet food or biscuits are affected by this announcement.

The affected products are sold through veterinary clinics and select pet specialty retailers nationwide and in Canada, Hong Kong, Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, and Costa Rica, as well as online.

 

Consumers who have purchased these pet foods should discard them. For additional information, consumers may visit www.naturapet.com. For a product replacement or refund call Natura toll-free at 800-224-6123. (Monday – Friday, 8:00 AM to 5:30 PM CST).

 

 

Brand

Size

Description

UPC

Lot Codes

Expiration Date

 

California Natural

All Sizes

All dry dog and dry cat food and treat varieties

All UPCs

All Lot Codes

All expiration dates prior to and including March 24, 2014

 

Evo

All Sizes

All dry dog and dry cat food and treat varieties

All UPCs

All Lot Codes

All expiration dates prior to and including March 24, 2014

 

Healthwise

All Sizes

All dry dog and dry cat food and treat varieties

All UPCs

All Lot Codes

All expiration dates prior to and including March 24, 2014

 

Innova

All Sizes

All dry dog and dry cat food and treat varieties

All UPCs

All Lot Codes

All expiration dates prior to and including March 24, 2014

 

Karma

All Sizes

All dry dog and dry cat food and treat varieties

All UPCs

All Lot Codes

All expiration dates prior to and including March 24, 2014

No canned wet food or biscuits are affected by this announcement.

About Natura Pet Products
Natura Pet Products is recognized as a trusted name behind natural and holistic pet foods and treats. Founded more than 20 years ago by John and Ann Rademakers and Peter Atkins, Natura is dedicated to providing the best natural nutrition.  Natura is committed to making premium pet foods and treats based on nutritional science and high-quality ingredients, combined with trusted manufacturing processes, for complete pet health. Lines include: Innova®, California Natural®, EVO®, HealthWise®, Mother Nature® and Karma®. To learn more about Natura Pet Products visit www.NaturaPet.com

Media Contact: Jason Taylor 513-622-3205

 

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Recall: Breeder’s Choice Active Care Biscuits

Breeder’s Choice, a Central Garden & Pet Company, has issued a voluntary recall for a single batch of Active Care Biscuits-Healthy Dog Treats due to mold discovered in one of the lots of dog biscuits.

The following product is included in the recall:

Product Code/SKU/ Material #: BCP-080

UPC Code:  0130104895

Size: 24 oz.

Product Name: Active Care Biscuits-Healthy Dog Treats

Best Before Code: 19/Dec/2013

Product and product lots that do not appear above have not been affected.

According to a release from the manufacturer, the mold seems to have occurred due to varying dryer temperature settings for drying biscuits. This exposed the recalled product to excess moisture and has since been remedied.

Pet owners who fed their pets the recalled biscuits should watch for symptoms that may develop. Common symptoms associated with mold exposure include gastrointestinal issues such as loose stool. At the time of this release, there have been no reports of human or pet illnesses associated with this recall.

For more information, call the Central Customer Care line at (866) 500-6286 or visit goactivedog.com.

 

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Recall: Bravo! Extends Recall
Bravo! Issues a Voluntary Recall for Three Raw Frozen Food Diet for Dogs and Cats Because Of Possible Salmonella Health Risk
 

Manchester, CT– Bravo! is voluntarily recalling three of its raw diet frozen foods for dogs and cats:  5 lb tubes of Bravo! Chicken Balance product item code 21-405 with “best used by” dates of 3_6_15 and 3_12_15; 2 lb Bravo! Chicken Blend product item code 21-102 with the “best used by” date of 3_21_15 and 5 lb. bags of Bravo! Beef Blend Burgers product item code 51-508 with the “best used by” dates of 3_21_15 and 3_22_15, because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.

This recall is being issued out of an abundance of caution, as while these products tested negative for pathogens by an independent third party prior to distribution, they were run on the same day or an adjacent day to a product that tested positive for pathogens.   The product that tested positive has been 100 percent contained and is not subject to this recall.

The recall involves only:

•    5 lb. Bravo! Chicken Balance frozen raw diet chubs (tubes) with “best used by” dates of 3_6_15 and 3_12_15 imprinted on the side of the plastic casing. Only 26 cases with the 3_6_15 date were distributed nationally and 36 cases with 3_12_15 date were distributed nationally.
•    2 lb. Bravo! Chicken Blend frozen raw diet chubs (tubes) with the “best used by” date of 3_21_15 imprinted on the side of the plastic casing. Only 67 cases with 3_21_15 date were distributed nationally.
•    5 lb. Bravo! Beef Blend Burgers bags with the “best used by” dates of 3_21_15 and 3_22_15 imprinted on the back panel of the plastic bag. Only 47 cases with the 3_21_15 date were distributed nationally and 55 cases with the 3_22_15 date were distributed nationally.

No other products or sizes are affected.

The recalled product should not be sold or fed to pets.  The company has received no reports of illness in either people or animals associated with this product.

While these products tested negative, Bravo! is allowing concerned pet owners to return unopened frozen tubes of food and patties to the store where purchased for a full refund.  Pet owners should dispose of unopened product in a safe manner (example, a securely covered trash receptacle).  Consumers who believe they have opened these products at home should just dispose of the product in a safe manner and contact the retailer where they purchased their product for a full refund.

Salmonella can affect animals eating the products and there is risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these products.

Healthy people infected with Salmonella should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. Rarely, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract symptoms. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers.

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans. If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.

In an effort to prevent the transmission of Salmonella from pets to family members and care givers, the FDA recommends that everyone follow appropriate pet food handling guidelines when feeding their pets.  A list of safe pet food handling tips can be found at: http://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/ucm048182.htm.

For more information on the Bravo recall, please visit www.bravorawdiet.com, or call toll free (866) 922-9222 Monday through Friday 9:00 am to 5:00 pm (EST).

Culture: DogPatch
Crikey!
British Invasion Redux

Blame it on the London Olympics, Harry Potter, Downton Abbey or fascination with the royals, but Brit-speak seems to be all the rage these days. Oft-heard terms such as cheers, brilliant, posh, loo, toff, mate, queue and even crikey are creeping into our everyday conversation. So, let’s bring these dog-related expressions across the pond as well.

Dog’s bollocks: Something really fantastic. (Not to be confused with “bollocks,” which is rubbish, er, nonsense.) Often shortened to “the dog’s.” Perhaps derived from dogs’ fascination with and time spent investigating their “down-unders.”

Mutt’s nuts: Something fantastic or excellent. Often shortened to “the mutt’s,” which is another way of saying, yup, the “dog’s bollocks.”

Puppy’s privates: The best; yet another, slightly more refined, take on the previous two.

Dog’s breakfast: A real mess. (Ed. note: I guess they don’t do gourmet pet food over there.)

Dog’s dinner: To be overdressed, or ostentatiously decked out.

Dog ride: Tagging along with someone doing an errand, or simply out and about.

Dog collar: A type of collar worn by the clergy. Also, the oversize head on a pint of Guinness.

Dog-end: A corruption of “docked-end”— a cigarette butt.

Dogsbody: A go-fer, or someone doing menial or boring work.

Dog-eye: Keep a look out.

Doggy: Stylish, of smart appearance.

Dogs are barking: Feet are tired and aching. For example, “Do you mind if I sit? My dogs are barking!”

Dog’s wages : Working just for food as payment for one’s services (Scots slang).

Give a dog a bad name: Someone with a bad reputation who’s blamed for everything.

And, lest we forget, there’s Cockney rhyming slang:
Dog and bone: Telephone.
Dog and pup: Cup.
Dog and duck: Ruck (a fight).
Dog’s tooth: Truth.

To all of which we say, “Dog save the Queen!” Given her devotion to her Corgis, that’s not much of a stretch.

News: Editors
Shelter Me

The good people at the Search Dog Foundation sent us this notice about a PBS show that is not to be missed.

Starting April 1st, PBS affiliates nationwide will feature SDF Search Teams as part of a series that celebrates shelter animals and the people whose lives they touch. For the first time, a video crew has captured the story of our teams -- from recruitment, to training, to pairing with a first-responder. The show is hosted by Jane Lynch, Emmy and Golden Globe-winning actress, singer, and comedian.

 

 

 Click here to see the Dates/times in your area

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Recall: Natura Expands Their Recall

Natura Pet Products issued their original recall on 3/18/13, a first in the history of that brand. Earlier this week on I spoke with a spokesperson from P&G, the company that now owns Natura, about that first recall and asked if they were continuing to produce these products at their plant in Kansas that had produced the recalled product. I was told that yes they were because the affected product happened to isolated runs at the end of 2012 and they were continuing to investigate the cause of the problem, although they were confident it had been isolated to that time frame. That surprised me then, and now this expanded recall has happened even more so. Perhaps in the future they will be more careful and conservative in allowing production to continue until the time that a pathogen problem has been isolated and fixed.

The following is the letter that appeared on their site:

Natura Pet is expanding the recall of specific California Natural, Innova, EVO, Karma and Healthwise formulas as a precautionary measure due to potential Salmonella contamination. Mother Nature and wet products are not included in this recall. No other P&G Pet Care brands are impacted by this recall.

We were alerted to a single case of Salmonella in a 2.2lb package of EVO Turkey & Chicken Cat Food on March 15th and took the precautionary measure of recalling all products produced on the same line within the same time frame. In the course of further examination, Salmonella was also discovered in other packages of EVO Turkey & Chicken Cat Food and Innova Cat Treats.  We are taking the immediate and precautionary action of expanding the current recall to include additional Natura products that were produced between December 14th 2012 and March 24th, 2013 on the same production line. We are also recalling a single lot of Innova Cat treats.  True to our heritage, we will be transparent as we work through this issue.

Plans are in place to increase production and expedite release of product, but some supply disruptions should be expected.

Salmonella and other contaminants pose a great challenge to the food industry.  No company is immune. We assure you that we are extensively investigating, inspecting and taking all actions necessary to ensure that our products meet both your customer’s expectations and ours.

If additional risks are identified, we will take immediate action to protect the health of our pets and integrity of our products. We are committed to doing what is necessary to make the healthiest pet foods in the world.

The attached document lists impacted SKUs with specific lot codes and expiration dates for both the previously announced voluntary recall and this expansion.

What to do if you have this product in your store or warehouse:
Managers or designee should immediately secure all affected SKUs to an isolated location.  Product should be secured/segregated from saleable product.

Distributor partners, please notify your retail outlets and ensure they take the appropriate action to remove the impacted products from the shelf.

Your Natura Sales Representative and/or distributor will be in contact with further instructions.

If you need additional information please call 800.224.6123.  We apologize for any inconvenience this situation may cause, and want to assure you that Natura Pet is taking all the necessary steps to ensure our product quality meets your expectations.

Global Pet Care CBD Leader
Bruce Eyre

Click Here to view Natura letter to retailers and list of all products involved in the expanded recall.

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