July 15, 2014
by Sam Bourne
5 Comments

Hero Cat Saves Dying Woman’s Life

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Rarely do we hear about a “hero cat,” but when we do it makes for an amazing tale.  The story of how Slinky Malinki saved his owner from the jaws of death is proof of that.

The Hero Cat’s Origins

Janet Rawlinson, a former nurse,was put on morphine for her chronic back pain. However, her reaction to the medication ended up being far more severe than her back pain ever was.

After slipping in and out of consciousness for 5 days, Janet began to lose her grip on reality. On the fifth day, when she fell into another morphine induced stupor, her normally timid and aloof cat, Slinky, intuited that there was something seriously wrong.

RELATED ARTICLE: Learn About Cat Personalities

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Showing a kind of quick response one might expect of a hero cat, Slinky rushed over to the neighboring house and began tapping at their window to get their attention. Once the neighbors noticed the cat, they sensed his urgency and followed him back to Rawlinson’s home. There they found an unconscious Janet.

“They got in through the back and managed to wake me up. My neighbour said he thought I was dead,” Janet told a reporter at the Lancashire Telegraph.

The Aftermath

Now back home, safe and sound, Janet has noticed that Slinky has been much more cautious around her.

“He sits on hills beyond the house and he watches out for me going into the kitchen. If he doesn’t see me go in for a couple of hours he will come into the house and find me, and if I don’t see him he will tap me on the leg or arm until I respond.”

RELATED ARTICLE: Crack the Cat Language Barrier – Learn to Understand Your Cat

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After news got wind of Slinky the hero cat, he has been nominated for a hero award by the Cats Protection’s National Cat Awards in London. If he manages to take the prize — and he is the front runner — he will be eligible to win the prestigious National Cat of the Year title.

Last year’s winner was Jessi-Cat, a service pet that helps a Manchester boy cope with his Asperger’s Syndrome.

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Source:
Lancashire Telegraph - CAT SAVED MY LIFE: Hero pet taps on neighbour’s window after owner collapses

July 10, 2014
by Sam Bourne
2 Comments

Saving Strays & Fighting Crime: A New Source for K9 Dogs

k9 dogs

Photo from Facebook

Mutts are just as clever and capable as their purebred cousins — anyone that has rescued a mixed breed can attest to that.

However, when it comes to being official police K9 dogs, purebreds have long been the only choice.

Departments with K9 dogs often spend thousands of dollars having purebreds like German Shepherds from Europe shipped over. This expense not only that takes a large bite out of the department’s budget, but it could also be entirely avoided.

k9 dogs

Photo from Facebook

It seems crazy for police to be paying top dollar for European purebreds when there are equally capable dogs that are in jeopardy of being put down. And Universal K9 is working on helping police everywhere realize that.

From Strays to K9 Dogs – How The Program Works

Brad Croft, the founder of Universal K9, and his team of military-trained personnel have already trained upwards of 60 rescue dogs. His organization has turned out dogs that can detect drugs or explosives, track scents, and apprehend a suspect. What’s more, every single one of these dogs were on track to be put down before they were rescued by Universal K9.

k9 dogs

Photo from Facebook

Once the dogs are fully trained, they are given to a police department free of charge. This organization gives police a new resource and gives these dogs a new lease on life.

And it is not only police who benefit from these fully trained K9 dogs. Schools and other institutions that may need the kind of help these dogs have to offer can apply to receive K9 dogs of their own. The goal of this program is to find homes for these otherwise helpless dogs, so anyplace that can use them is more than welcome.

k9 dogs

Photo from Facebook

How You Can Help

Croft is currently working with a class of 15 new dogs and expects to have trained 100 dogs by the end of the year.  Croft said to ABC News “if you look at the statistics, the statistics are like something like 945,000 a year that are being euthanized,” so there is still a lot of work to be done.

In order to widen their scope and help more police departments open their eyes to the potential of rescue dogs, Universal K9 is asking for some start up capital and has been using the popular crowdsourcing site Indiegogo to go about it. If you think this project is worth expanding, please lend them a hand either by donating or sharing this with people who might care.

DONATE HERE

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Source: ABC News - From Shelter to K9 Unit: Group Gives Dogs Second Chance and a Duty Digital Journal - From Street Dog to Police Dog Crowdfunding Campaign Aims to Save Dogs, Aid Struggling Police Departments & Protect our Nation’s Schools From Guns/Drugs

July 9, 2014
by Sam Bourne
1 Comment

Fundraising Scam May Kill a Rescue With Parvo in Dogs

parvo in dogs

Photo from Facebook

Even before she succumbed to Parvo in dogs, things were not going Sheba’s way. When her family decided to move without her, she became very timid and sickly during her time at the shelter. After her condition started to worsen, the small shelter taking care of her was forced to relocate her to a larger outfit — Felines & Canines in Chicago.

At F&C, it was discovered that what was once thought to be kennel cough was actually Parvo in dogs, a much more serious condition. Sheba was losing a lot of weight and getting worse every day, which is why the staff at F&C decided to set up a donation collection page on GoFundMe.com.

It seemed like a real roll of the dice, but after only a few days, the organization managed to raise a considerable chunk of change for Sheba. Thinking that her struggle was finally nearing its end, everyone at F&C was ready to start uncorking the champagne. However, the celebrations would come to an abrupt halt.

parvo in dogs

Photo from Facebook

How Charity Fraud Impacted A Case of Parvo in Dogs

As it happens, websites that allow you to make charitable donations anonymously (like GoFundMe.com) are a breeding ground for people with stolen credit cards, since here they can test out whether or not the card works without getting caught. Unluckily for Sheba, a lot of the money raised by the site turned out to be fraudulent — upwards of $3,000.

This posed a very difficult hurdle for Sheba and the people at Felines & Canines, since this type of fraud put them in a unique “worst of both worlds” situation. People looking at their page were deterred from donating, since it seemed like they had raised enough money to treat a case of Parvo in dogs. At the same time, no actual money was coming in for Sheba’s treatment.

parvo in dogs

Photo from Facebook

And to top it all off, all the time spent not getting Sheba treatment for her Parvo in dogs has resulted in her condition deteriorating even quicker. Barely stable, Sheba is clinging to life with what little strength remains.

If you would be interested in helping Sheba overcome her Parvo in dogs, go to her GoFundMe page and make a real donation. With enough support from the community, Sheba can put all of this behind her.

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 Source:
Chicago Tribune – Fundraiser for Sick Dog Hampered by Bogus Donations
Facebook – Felines & Canines

 

July 8, 2014
by Sam Bourne
2 Comments

MUST WATCH: Bilbo the Amazing Lifeguard Dog

lifeguard dog

Image from YouTube

This is Bilbo. He is the widely known lifeguard dog of Steve Jamieson. And the two of them together are the ultimate life saving duo.

Since it is of the utmost importance for a lifeguard to stay in peak physical condition, Steve is constantly going out to train. And whenever he does, Bilbo is not far behind. In fact, when it comes to becoming a certified lifeguard, Bilbo is in the top of his class. He can more than make the requisite 1,300 foot swim in rough currents. And he can do it in under 7 minutes — a very impressive time.

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Image from YouTube

Not only is he speedy in the water, but his endurance is also something few humans could hope to match. When Steve starts to fade during a workout, he just grabs a hold of Bilbo’s haunches and lets the powerful pooch tow him around for another few hours. And the lifeguard dog drags him as if it were nothing!

RELATED STORY: The Most Active Breeds for Your Lifestyle

Thanks to Bilbo’s speed and endurance in the water, dozens of people are alive today who might have otherwise drowned. And at least three of those rescues were carried out by Bilbo alone.

Why Bilbo Makes a Great Lifeguard Dog

A Newfoundland, Bilbo is practically bred for the purpose of rescuing people from the briny deep. They were originally used on board fishing vessels, helping to pull people out of the drink in the event that their boat capsized. Newfies are a powerful, work oriented breed that, by nature, cannot resist an opportunity to take a swim — a perfect lifeguard dog. And Bilbo is a prime example!

lifeguard dog

Image from YouTube

The fact that Newfoundlands were so prevalent aboard ships is no coincidence — they are designed to be unrelenting swimmers. Their large, powerful paws are perfectly designed for swimming thanks to their webbed toes. This unique trait gives their paw a larger surface area, making it possible to apply greater force on the water they are moving through.

RELATED STORY: What Are The Largest Dog Breeds?

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Image from YouTube

Also, their broad, heavy tail makes for a superb rudder, allowing them to use it for steering. Most breeds change direction in the water by paddling in a different direction, which ends up slowing them down. The Newfie’s specialized tail frees up their paws to focus on one task — moving quickly.

Lastly, Newfoundlands have a dense, waterproof coat. Even after a long swim, while their outer coat may be soaked, their downy undercoat is still dry. Acting in much the same way as a wet suit, the Newfie’s special coat gives them the ability to stay in the water for extended periods without even batting an eye.

lifeguard dog

Image from YouTube

Curious to see Bilbo, the amazing lifeguard dog, in action? Check out this segment on BBC Earth’s Extraordinary Animals TV series.

Source:
The Dodo - Meet “Bilbo,” The Lifeguard Dog Who Can Swim 1,300 Feet In Under 7 Minutes

July 3, 2014
by Sam Bourne
1 Comment

Lady Eats Nothing But Dog Food for a Month

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We’ve all heard the old saying ‘you are what you eat.’ Well, if that is true, then Washington pet store owner Dorothy Hunter is a bag of dog food.

Dorothy has captured everyone’s attention by announcing that, for 30 days, she will consume nothing but the food and treats she keeps in her store. Well, that and her morning coffee — she isn’t insane.

Why Eat Dog Food?

The idea came to her one day when she was looking for a quick snack. “I grabbed a bag of treats off the counter, and I was like, wow, you know, these read better than normal people treats. So I started eating the treats and I was like, you know, I could do this for 30 days.”

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Sorry, Buster, but this bowl is for me…

It should be noted that her store only carries pet food specially selected for the high quality of its ingredients. Dorothy states her inventory contains “no fillers, or animal (byproducts) or preservatives. We also do our best to make sure we do not carry any edible foods from China or products whose ingredients came from China.”

RELATED STORY: 8 Super Premium Dog Foods

But that doesn’t change the fact that it is still dog food.

“I decided to eat this food for a month just to prove how good it tastes, as well as showcase its nutrition,” said Hunter.

Now, This May Surprise You

And, as strange as it seems, it has been working. Since June 19th (when the diet began) Dorothy has lost 2.5 pounds, and claims that her feet hurt her less after working a 10 hour shift.

RELATED STORY: Recognizing If Your Pet Is Overweight

It isn’t just Dorothy either. Much of the Hunter clan has taken to the doggy diet. “My kids love the dog treats as well, and I don’t mind them eating those because they are nutritious.”

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We love our new dog food diet!

Though it may seem strange to eat nothing but dog food (however gourmet) for a month, to get a point across about the importance of educating ourselves on the food we consume, Dorothy Hunter has done a bang-up job.

“Learn about what you’re eating and what you’re feeding your pets. I think if we can get the awareness out of reading the ingredients, and really understanding what is in the pet food, that that will eventually carry over. If you’re feeding your pet healthy, maybe you’ll start reading the ingredients of your own foods, and maybe you can start eating healthy too.”

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Source:
Tri-City Herald - Tri-City woman eating pet food to prove its nutrition
 NBC Right Now - Local Pet Supply Store Owner Eats Dog Food for a Month