October 22nd, 2014 by jerry in Books · 3 Comments
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From our own local Tripawd celebrity to global superstardom, Jill the Tripawd Kitty is featured in a fabulous new book called “A Letter to My Cat: Notes to Our Best Friends.”
Jill’s ready for her close up.
Here’s a sneak preview of the book, Jill is featured at 2:41
This touching series of letters is written by cat lovers from all over the world, including celebrities like Jill and Erica Berse, Dr. Oz, Dita Von Teese and Joe Perry.
You will love every word of this heartwarming collection of true stories about fabulous felines. Filled with gorgeous photos and beautiful letters compiled by Lisa Erspamer, the book is a must-have for every kitty lover.
Jill the Tripawd Superstar
A Letter to My Cat: Notes to Our Best Friends is available in stores on October 28. Pre-order your copy today and contact Jill for your personal pawdographed edition!
Wyatt waits for his pawdograph
October 10th, 2014 by jerry in Books · 10 Comments
Tripawds is a user-supported community. Thank you for your support!
Talent runs in the Dean Koontz pack and this week the famous author’s beloved Golden Retriever Anna makes a very special debut in her first book “ASK ANNA: Advice for the Furry and Forlorn.”
In Anna’s brand new, adorable and gorgeous photo book she doles out snappy wisdom and insightful perspectives on the canine life about popular topics like:
- Love and food
- Begging techqiques
- Escape artistry
- Tennis balls
- Rolling in mud, and much more!
Anna and her loyal canine readers and Facebook fans reveal what they really think of their humans and our odd behavior, along with funny doggie dating advice and cross-species relationship quirks. And in her never-ending dedication to making the world a better place for humans and dogs, Anna is donating all proceeds to the assistance dog group Canine Companions for Independence!
More About “Ask Anna” from Amazon
“Dog confidante and advisor, Anna Koontz, golden retriever and canine companion to #1 New York Times bestselling author Dean Koontz debuts her talent as advice columnist to her species in her seminal work Ask Anna: Advice for the Furry and Forlorn. Anna helps all sorts of dogs with all sorts of problems, questions and, well, issues. With her superior intellect, sharp wit, a warm and fuzzy heart, Anna assists dogs in finding their inner canine. Some of her best advice: take time daily for ball-chasing and belly rubs – the keys (along with sausages) to true canine joy.
Learn more about the problems that plague Anna’s clients and be inspired by how she counsels them:
- A Dachshund who feels height-challenged when cavorting with her Great Dane and Wolfhound neighbors
- A Newfoundland wondering about his “blended” family: his sister is a Chihuahua
- The trouble with birds…
- Issues of self-esteem: Am I cute enough? Is my tongue too long?
- Coexistence with cats…that inferior species which some humans (mistakenly) prefer
And delight in Dean’s just slightly skewed (or maybe not really) perspective on the importance of dogs throughout history. Without their help and advice, we humans would be in even worse trouble than we are today. They’re heaven-sent (what is dog spelled backwards?!)”
Here’s a special message from Anna:
My dad, Dean Koontz, is a writer, as you might be aware. For years his first golden retriever, Trixie, also wrote books, which sometimes made the best-seller list. I vowed never to be a writer.
I barely have enough time for all the belly rubs, ball chasing, bird chasing, tug-of-war, and posing cutely that is required of me as a golden retriever, not to mention all of my non-professional interests, such as the new translation of Proust that I have undertaken, and learning to pilot a hot-air balloon.
Nevertheless, I have written a book of advice for dogs. It’s not a matter of ego, which anyone who knows a golden retriever will attest. It’s not about money, because all the earnings I receive from ASK ANNA will be given to Canine Companions for Independence, which provides assistance dogs for people with disabilities. What it’s about is giving back to my community–which I feel obliged to do especially because of all the park grass I’ve ruined with little round brown spots.
Thank you for your support.
Win a Copy of “Ask Anna”
We think you’ll love this book and everyone should buy at least 5 copies to help Canine Companions for Independence! However Anna was kind enough to send us one free publicity copy of the book, which we would like to gift to one lucky Tripawds member. Here’s what you need to do enter this contest:
Comment below by Friday 10/25
and tell us the best advice
you’ve ever gotten from your dog or cat
The contest ends on Friday October 25 at 11:59 pm Eastern time. One winner will be selected at random and notified via email. Good luck!
Tagged: behavior, dogs, reading
September 25th, 2014 by jerry in Books · No Comments
When a Tripawd dog or cat stars in a book, movie or song, we’ll gladly help spread some three-legged goodwill. That’s why today we think you should know about Cathy Spencer’s newest book, “The Dating Do-Over.”
Dumped, Dating and Dogs Make a Fun Read
Here’s what Cathy’s book summary on Amazon says about this fun fictional story:
Toronto school teacher Viv Nowak has a sympathetic heart and abominable taste in men. She expects an engagement ring when her live-in lover of six years lands a terrific new job in Vancouver. Instead, she gets dumped . . . on Valentine’s Day! Everyone, from her best friends to her father to her estranged mother, has an opinion on how she should fix her life. Her friends even insist on a dating do-over. But will they like her choice when she finally decides what her heart wants?
In this fast-paced, sweetly composed tale of dating in the modern world, Viv meets Tom, a compassionate animal lover who helps save a stray dog named Bruno who gets hit by a car and loses his leg. The resulting three-legged love story is a read that every Tripawd pawrent and animal lover will enjoy.
We especially appreciate how Cathy wrote to us before publication to learn about amputation recovery in dogs, and the great care and accuracy she used in detailing Bruno’s recovery as well as human perceptions of a three-legged dog:
It was six by the time they arrived at the vet’s. Stacy nodded to them and let them through the door into the back hallway, where they walked to the recovery area. Thiago, the technician, had Bruno out of his cage. The dog was wearing a plastic cone around his head, plus a harness. The bandage was off, and Viv could see the stitches running from the top of Bruno’s shoulder to half-way down his side. Bruno was limping on his three remaining legs, and Viv’s heart contracted with pity.
“Hi, Bruno. How’re you feeling today?” Tom said from the doorway. The dog turned, yipped, and hobbled over to him, his tail pumping. Tom squatted and laughed when the dog butted him with the plastic cone instead of licking his face. “That to keep him from biting at his stitches?”
“Exactly.” Thiago smiled. “He’s doing much better today. Dr. Lane cut back his pain meds, so he’s a lot more energetic, aren’t you, boy?”
Cathy even thanked the Tripawds Nation in the book, so please join us in a big “THREE PAWS UP!” for a great novel! We hope you’ll buy a copy here and spread the word about this fantastic novel.
About the Author
Author Cathy Spencer
Award-winning author Cathy Spencer is married to a singer/actor/ teacher. He didn’t actually say “marry me and see Canada” when he proposed, but that’s practically what happened. They have lived on the west coast in Vancouver, on the east coast in St. John’s, in Calgary, and are currently living in Ontario.
Cathy writes both romance and mystery novels. Framed for Murder, winner of the 2014 Bony Blithe Mystery Award, is the first in the Anna Nolan series, a cozy mystery with an amateur sleuth set in the Rocky Mountain Foothills of Alberta. The second novel, Town Haunts, takes place at Halloween, while the third, Tidings of Murder and Woe, will be released in time for Christmas 2014. Aside from the mystery series and The Dating Do-Over, Cathy has written a regency romance entitled The Affairs of Harriet Walters, Spinster, as well as two short story collections, Tall Tales Twin-Pack, Mysteries and Tall Tales Twin-Pack, Science Fiction and Fantasy. Connect with Cathy at her website: http://cmspencer.blogspot.com.
Tagged: dogs, reading
September 4th, 2014 by jerry in Books · No Comments
Today we’re proud to present a guest blog post written just for the Tripawds Nation, by world-renowned pet psychic and animal communicator Gail Thackray. She is the author of “How to Talk to Your Pets: Animal Communication for Dogs, Cats, & Other Critters” — a must-read for every animal lover who wants better communications with animals:
“Animal communicator Gail Thackray believes that everyone can learn to talk to their pets. Gail leads you through specific exercises to develop this skill and guides you step-by-step to connect and communicate. You’ll learn the most voiced “pet peeves,” solutions to common behavioral issues, and how to know what your animal wants. Gail teaches you how to perform energy healings, do body scans for health, and how to connect to lost pets. With Gail’s down-to-earth style and hilariously funny stories, you’ll get a firsthand look at how animal communication works and just how cute these critters really are.”
Here are Gail’s tips for preparing our animals, as well as ourselves, for surgery.
“Our animals are communicating with us all the time whether we realize it or not. They hear everything we say, we just have a harder time hearing them back. In fact not only do they hear but it is more accurate to say they sense. You see they pick up on our thoughts and our feelings more so than our words. So we can say something out loud but really be thinking something else and it is what we are really thinking that they pick up on.
They love you to talk to them and be clear with them. It can be very confusing when they pick up little bits and pieces. When your thoughts are scattered and you have mixed feelings. Perhaps if they have a major operation coming up, you are thinking about it, what will happen to them and perhaps you have some fearful thoughts. Imagine they are getting all of this. And you don’t even have to be in the same room as them, they hear your thoughts even when you are at work.
Animals See Our Visions, Hear Our Thoughts
So the best thing to do is slate out some quiet time just to talk to them. Talk straight about what you know and what are your fears (you cannot hide anything anyway). Whether you say this out loud or think it doesn’t really matter. They see the visions you have and feel and hear your thoughts.
Find time together in a place where you will not be disturbed. You need to get yourself in tat relaxed, peaceful, almost meditative state. Perhaps you could sit in the garden or when you just wake up and they are by your bed. Taking a walk with your pet works just as well as sitting meditating.
Imagine connecting to your pet through love. Think about sending love to them through your heart chakra the spiritual center of your chest and receiving it back from theirs. Now talk to them gently through your thoughts. Thinking and visualizing to explain what is happening. Then allow their thoughts to drift back to you.
Don’t question your thoughts but just allow the first thing that comes to mind. It could come as a vision a feeling or a thought that pops into your head or all of those.Tell them through your thoughts by visualizing what is going to happen as far as you know. Try to emphasis your thoughts on the operation being easy and successful. Try to think positive and visualize a wonderful outcome. The more you can do this with them the more calm and reassured they will feel. Visualize a quick and easy recovery. This works for people too!
Our Health is Connected
They do see the future and they do understand what is happening and what they need for their healing. They know and understand that they have, for some reason on a higher level, chosen to have this experience. Your stress and worry is usually what they are more concerned about. “Mom is very worried about it, tell her I’ll be fine.” “Dad has a lot of fear.” are things that I hear. They actually want to reassure the owners!
Now another thing to consider is why is this area of the body affected? Our pets are very connected to our energy and often when I do readings on an animal’s health they show me something in their owner’s health. They want you to be healed too. Because you are so energetically connected the area of the animal’s body may be an area that you are having difficulty in your life. When you do healing on yourself it actually helps their healing.
For instance their back legs resonate with your legs. Their front legs with your arms. Their eyes with your eyes etc. So if their issue is their back left leg then look at your left leg. It may be something physically out of balance with your body that needs addressing but it could also be energetically. Your left leg is about movement in a physical way, difficulty moving from a job you dislike. Your right leg more emotional or spiritual. Difficulty moving on from a relationship or feeling like you don’t have a purpose in life. Your arms not taking care of yourself, always yielding to others and not talking for yourself.
When you talk to your pet ask if they can show you in your life where you need some healing. Sending love and light to this area of your life, addressing negative feelings you’ve held onto and releasing is not only a tremendous healing for you but also your pet. During your pets operation and in the recovery, pay attention to yourself and give yourself the healing you need and this you will find is probably the most valuable way you can speed your pet’s recovery.”
In addition to being the author of “How to Talk to Your Pets: Animal Communication for Dogs, Cats, & Other Critters,” Gail teaches Animal communication workshops and also performs distant healings for animals. Her life changed at age forty when she discovered she was a medium and able to talk to spirits on the other side. Helping others connect to Source and to develop their own natural psychic abilities is her passion. Read more about her healing and communication work at GailThackray.com.
Tagged: animal communication, animals, behavior
Looking for an alternative to the Dreaded Elizabethan Cone of Shame!
No Bite Elizabethan Cone Alternative
If your dog or cat is recovering from surgery and the usual recovery cones aren’t doing the trick, here’s a new post-surgery recovery device we just discovered that might work for your pet.
The Bite Not Collar
BiteNot Collars are an excellent alternative to the traditional Elizabethan collar. It provides unimpeded peripheral vision and allows pets to eat, drink, sleep and play while protecting back, rump, base of tail, flanks, chest, abdomen, and genitals — even feet in small breeds and cats too!.
Made of flexible plastic and foam and machine washable to help you keep it clean. BiteNot Collars are the only cervical restraint with a harness strap, which enables the collars to stay on.
User Review on Amazon: “I don’t know why vets don’t sell these, it’s the best option for keeping your dog from bothering his wound without crashing into things with that stupid cone. It was snowy when my dog had his operation, the poor dog couldn’t even go to relieve himself with tripping due to snow in his cone. We purchased this bitenot collar it was amazinging comfortable for him, which made it easier for us. You and your dog will love this bitenot collar, purchase before the operation!”
How to measure: While your pet is standing, measure from the base of the your dog or cat’s ear to the top of it’s shoulder blade. This measurement will give you the desired width and size of the collar.
For example, if you measure 6″ you will need a size 6.
- Size 3.5″ for dogs under 10lbs (i.e. toy poodle)
- Size 4″ for dogs 10-17 lbs (i.e. Bichon, Shih Tzu)
- Size 5″ for dogs 18-30 lbs (i.e. Spaniels, Terriers)
- Size 5L” for dogs 31-45 lbs (i.e. Chow, Pit Bull)
- Size 6″ for dogs 46-70 lbs (i.e. Labrador, Golden Retriever)
- Size 7″ for dogs 71-100 lbs (i.e. Rottweiler)
- Size 8″for dogs 101-140 lbs (i.e. Bullmastiff)
- Size 2.5″ for cats under 10 lbs
- Size 3″ for cats over 10 lbs.
When choosing size, remember that the collar must stretch from behind the animal’s ear to the top of its shoulder for maximum protection.
Note: These collars are not recommended for protecting eyes or ears.
Thanks for shopping through this blog for all of your Amazon purchases! A portion of your purchases help to keep the Tripawds community online.
Summer’s here and the ticks are biting. The key to getting rid of these nasty bugs once they latch onto your dog or cat is a cheap an easy tool we think you’ll love!
TickKey Tick Removal Tool,
Your Key to Reliable, Safe & Effective Tick Removal
The Tick Key is made of rugged 5052 anodized aluminum
With a simple slide and pull motion The Tick Key removes the tick body and embedded head
Reliable, Safe & Effective – The Easiest-to-Use Tick Removal Device on Earth!
TickKey attaches to your key ring or your pet’s collar so it is always with you
Protect Your Family and Pets from Ticks Including Lyme Disease Carrying Deer Ticks
The Tick Key Tick Remover Family 3-Pack
Veterinary oncologists are the superheroes of the Tripawds Nation. With brilliant minds working overtime to help us through very dark times, these cancer experts offer hope and understanding when oftentimes our friends and family do the opposite.
But what happens when a vet oncologist is facing her own cancer battle? Can she find reassurance in a bogged-down human health care system that pales in comparison to the efficient, compassionate care that her animal patients receive? Will human oncology medicine measure up to her expectations?
The book “Lucky Dog: How Being a Veterinarian Saved My Life” by Dr. Sarah Boston, takes us on a funny and unforgettable journey through the eyes of a brainy, lovely and funny oncologist. Any pet parent who’s been through the cancer experience or is going through it now will relate to every word. Here’s why:
Animal or Human Cancer Patients: Who Gets the Better Deal?
Sharp as a tack and ready to do battle with cancer every day of her life, Dr. Boston is a busy veterinary oncology surgeon who is well-versed in diagnosing cancer in animals. But during one typical evening while indulging in her “fantastically overpriced” French beauty cream, she happens to find a suspicious mass in her own neck. Her memoir begins with the shock of realizing she’s just made her own diagnosis:
“I’m spreading on the cream, banishing forehead wrinkles, eye wrinkles, and smile lines. I move on to my neck. Wait a second, what is that? I can feel a mass.
I do not say “bump” or “lump” or “swollen gland” because these fingers are trained fingers and I know instantly that it is a mass in my right thyroid gland. I know that it is new, and that it is not good.”
This marks the beginning of Dr. Boston’s bumpy ride through the human oncology medical system. We follow along through tests and appointments as she fluctuates between worrying about bothering her doctors too much, to becoming a ferocious advocate for herself when treatment moves at a snail’s pace and doctors patronizingly advise her not to worry – despite her gut instinct (and well-trained oncologist brain) indicating otherwise.
From “Diagnosis” to “Treatment” to “Recovery,” the book’s chapter structure alternates between her own cancer experience and those of her canine patients. From dealing with surgeries, to coping with the reactions of friends and family, to getting back into the “real world,” Dr. Boston’s story unexpectedly unfolds into a “How To” guide for human and animal cancer survivors, their friends and family. She writes:
“It’s hard to compare a dog’s experience of cancer surgery to that of a person. A few things make it easier on them: first, they don’t know that they have cancer, and second, they have less time to think about the fact that they have cancer (if they could know that they have cancer in the first place) because they move through the process so much faster. Some things are harder. I wish I could explain to them what we are doing, why we are poking them, why they wake up in pain, and why they are sleeping in a cage. It’s heartbreaking if I think about it too much. Most of my patients are used to sleeping in a bed every night with their owners. The cage and the solitude must be very confusing. Even for the same surgical procedure, the experience for the human and animal patient is worlds apart.”
As you read through Lucky Dog, keep a highlighter pen handy. This insightful memoir is filled with so many inspirational and refreshingly honest insights about life, death, humans and animals, you’ll want to remember passages like:
“If you are a dog with a mass or a lump that someone thinks is cancer, your path to diagnosis and treatment will be very different than mine, with one glaringly obvious similarity: every patient needs an advocate. This is probably more apparent in canine patients because they can’t discuss their clinical signs, take themselves to the doctor, or make any decisions about their health. They are completely reliant on health advocacy.
Sometimes the barriers to a diagnosis and treatment are too great and our patients lose before they even have the chance to fight. Sometimes just the word cancer, and not the disease itself, is enough to bring the dog’s life to an end, even if it is a suggestion and not a firm diagnosis. A dog’s life is only as important as we think it is, and it is only worth as much as we can afford, or choose, to pay. A dog’s death is only as sad as it makes the owners who loved him, and a dog’s recovery from cancer or fake cancer is only as happy as it makes the people who are cheering him on.”
Cancer Freedom and Life Lessons
Spoiler alert: Dr. Boston survives, and today her health is good. But surviving the cancer ordeal is just the beginning of her next chapter in life, which is a new appreciation for seeing and experiencing things the way our animals do; living every day to the fullest, without worrying about the future. Again, we learn from her wisdom as she shares insights about looking death in the eye:
“We don’t consider death very often, but contemplating your mortality brings a certain level of freedom. Appreciating life for what it is – brief and precious – is cancer freedom. We are constantly trying to forget that we are all going to die. What if we stopped protecting ourselves from death? It doesn’t need to be so morbid. It might help us focus on the things that are important and bring us happiness.
What would you change in your life if you were going to die in a few days? Weeks? Months? Or years? Well, the truth is, you are. How few days, weeks, or year of life does it take before you start living the life you want to live? Wouldn’t it be better to live a shorter life with happy purpose and freedom than the unexceptional life of faux-immortality?”
When we’re in the middle of life-changing situations that drain us of our energy, it’s hard to imagine picking up a full-length novel and actually getting through it. But after reading Dr. Boston’s book, we guarantee you that her story is hard to put down, and will serve as the best medicine for you and your beloved companions, human or otherwise. Pick up a copy of “Lucky Dog,” and get ready to laugh in the face of cancer!
Thanks for shopping through this blog for all of your Amazon purchases! A portion of your purchases help to keep the Tripawds community online.
Tagged: cancer, oncology, reading
July 10th, 2014 by jerry in Books · 2 Comments
People who feed their pets a raw meaty bones diet are putting their pets and entire households in jeopardy and should consider other diets, says Dr. Camille Torres-Henderson of Colorado State University’s James L. Voss Veterinary Teaching Hospital Small Animal Practice.
Adherents claim that pets eating raw diets have shinier coats, healthier skin, cleaner teeth, improved immunity and easier weight management. Impassioned testimonials about raw food diets often include anecdotes that might seem persuasive.
Unfortunately, there is no scientific evidence to support such claims, and the veterinarians at Colorado State University do not recommend feeding raw diets to pets. — Dr. Torres-Henderson
In this June 10, 2014 article published by CSU, Dr. Torres-Henderson goes on to advise pet parents to “analyze nutritional claims and look for the research to support those claims, especially if they seem too good to be true.”
While much of the raw feeding success stories are anecdotal, it’s hard to dispute these examples of how well the diet works for certain cats and dogs when you experience the benefits firsthand. We respectfully dispute calling it trendy, when the raw food diet for pets has been growing in popularity since the early 1990s.
We saw the raw diet benefits ourselves when Tripawds founder Spirit Jerry ate raw, and we see how bright and clean our Wyatt Ray’s teeth stay because he loves gnawing on a raw meaty bones.
Yes there’s a salmonella risk when feeding raw, but when you consider how often commercial pet food is recalled for the same reason, the risks seem on par with one another don’t you think? CSU cites other reasons for not choosing a raw diet, including choking on bones and nutritional deficiencies, of which most veterinarians will concur.
A raw deal? The trendy ‘ancestral diet’ might not be best for your pet. — CSU’s Dr. Torres-Henderson
There’s one thing that we can agree with when it comes to this article: there is no one perfect way to feed a dog or cat. We recommend doing your research and working with a holistic-minded vet to decide if a raw food diet is right for your pack.
Meanwhile here are some great resources for learning more about feeding a raw diet to your dog or cat so you can talk to a vet about your findings.
The Barf Diet
(Raw Feeding for Dogs and Cats Using Evolutionary Principles)
What Your Dog Is Begging For!:
Raw Meaty Bones, Your Dogs Best Friend.
Dr. Becker’s Real Food for Healthy Dogs and Cats
Tripawds Spokesdog Wyatt Ray says “Eat more bones!”
German Shepherd Wyatt loves to eat raw bones
Thanks for doing all of your Amazon shopping through this blog,
a small portion of sales helps to offset the costs of keeping Tripawds online.
June 26th, 2014 by jerry in Books · 2 Comments
Dogs don’t live long enough and we humans have a lot to do with that, as Ted Kerasote demonstrates in Pukka’s Promise: The Quest for Longer-Lived Dogs.
This hefty book is now available in paperback and should be required reading for every new dog parent. Thanks to a promotional copy provided by Ted’s publisher, we are sharing our thoughts about this book with you.
Searching for the Anti-Aging Switch
Before Ted opens his heart to another animal after his heart dog Merle succumbs to old age, he begins a careful examination about the state of domesticated dogs’ health and what we may be doing to inadvertently shorten it.
What he uncovers are hard facts that will make you question (and hopefully change) many aspects of the life we share with our dogs.
“And although we may be able to extend their life span by improving their nutrition, inbreeding, can care, it’s almost certain that dogs will never live as long as we do. Yet, across this bittersweet divide, which separates us so finally from them, we reach out – again and again and again.”
Is there a “Well-Bred” Dog?
Pukka’s Promise opens by taking a closer look at dog breeding and how irresponsible behavior and lack of regulation in this profit-motivated industry is much of the reasons for genetically linked diseases that cause premature debilitation and death in millions of purebred dogs every year.
“I also had to wonder why in an age when products such as electrical appliances, automobiles, pharmaceuticals, home furnishings, and toys must meet safety standards before being sold to the public, dogs are still sold without any regulations concerning their quality and health.”
As he does throughout the rest of the book when examining factors that adversely affect our dog’s health, Ted provides viable alternatives for us to avoid them. This time as an alternative to the American Kennel Club, he suggests working with a dog breeder through the United Kennel Club when seeking a pure bred dog.
Formed in 1898, the UKC is comprised of breeders who will only breed lines based on the physical stamina, strength and longevity for dogs of any size, versus breeding primarily for outward appearance. The UKC also welcomes mixed-breed dogs into many of its competitions under a Limited Privilege program.
It is our firm belief that the right balance between performance and conformation results in healthier happier dogs for everyone. We are proud that we share that same philosophy with our growing number of dedicated participants. –United Kennel Club
When agonizing over whether to choose a pure bred or a rescue dog, Ted also takes a closer look at the animal rescue movement, public animal shelters and the causes and effects of pet overpopulation. While this discussion was emotional and upsetting to read through at times, it’s critical reading for all pet parents in order for us to do our part to advocate for the health and welfare of all dogs.
A Look at Your Dog’s Environment
After carefully choosing Pukka, Merle’s successor, Pukka’s Promise goes on to provide vital food for thought for every dog parent today. He discusses how the shortened life spans of dogs may also be the result of the endless amount of toxins we expose them to:
“We, and our dogs and cats, swim through a vast chemical ocean. We swim through it each and every day of our lives, and our dogs and cats are far m ore affected by its harmful ingredients – carcinogens, neurotoxins, and endocrine distruptors – than you or I.”
Ted devotes a large section of the book to “putting up dikes” to protect our dogs from environmental contaminants, from carefully choosing certified non-toxic toys like those from Planet Dog, to using minimal chemicals and treated fabrics in the home.
The book also covers how diet plays into our dog’s longevity and practical things we can do to ensure peace of mind when feeding our dogs. For example, buying “grain free” isn’t necessarily healthy if it contains artificial preservatives in it like BHA and BHT, both of which have been linked to cancer in laboratory test rats.
Always educate yourself and read labels, always consider the true cost of what you’re purchasing: feeding a dog the healthiest food you can afford will cost you just a few more cents each day and perhaps save you thousands in vet bills over the course of your dog’s lifetime.
The Spay Neuter Dilemma
Other dog health discussions that Ted embarks upon include a closer look at vaccines and why we should question them, cancer treatments and holistic therapies (that most members here will be well familiar with already), and finally perhaps the most controversial topic that I was surprised to learn about: how recent studies are finding that spaying and neutering dogs at any age adversely affects their health, stamina and longevity.
- Neutered males have a 2 to 4 times greater risk of getting prostate cancer
- Are at increased risk for osteosarcoma
- They are are 2 to 4 times more likely to develop bladder cancer
- Have a 160 percent higher risk for hemangiosarcoma
- Are at greater risk for orthopedic injuries, hip displaysia and more prone to a weaker rear end because their back muscles aren’t as well developed as those intact dogs, who have the muscle-building benefits of testosterone.
When it comes to spayed females, their situation is a little more complicated but they too are at greater risk for certain cancers, including a five times greater risk of developing hemangiosarcoma.
While questioning the positives of spay and neuter, Ted presents the option of canine vasectomies and tubal ligations to several institutions and veterinarians, most of whom thought he was completely nuts for calling into question the spay neuter dogma.
“Such quick and easy techniques could have wide application in animal shelters interested in reducing the costs of spaying and neutering. Yet not one of dozens of shelter workers and directors with whom I spoke, and almost none of the veterinarians whom I interviewed, had ever considered any method of canine birth control other than spaying and neutering, a testament to how the spay neuter mind-set has overshadowed the teaching of other pregnancy-preventing methods in North American veterinary training centers.
“Only one veterinarian, Dr. Robert McCarthy, a veterinary surgeon specializing in orthopedic and soft-tissue surgery at Tufts University’s Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine…when I asked him why his and other veterinary training schools weren’t teaching vasectomies and tubal ligations, he laughed, a bit ruefully. “The reason they’re not being taught,” he said,, “Is habit. Spaying and neutering were taught a hundred years ago, and so we continue to do it that way today. It’s only recently that we’ve started to accumulate data showing that loss of hormonal function may have consequences.”
Ted presents such a good case for the argument against spay/neuter that you can’t help but wonder if he’s right. There’s so much food for thought like this in Pukka’s Promise, that no pet parent should be without it. Our dogs will thank us and we’ll get to enjoy them for much longer than ever before.
“The breakthroughs in human medicine will increasingly be applied to veterinary medicine and will extend the life spans of our dogs, especially if a master genetic switch, one that determines the rate of our aging, can be found and eventually turned off. What a welcome day that will be: no more stiff joints, no more graying hair, no more wrinkles, no more botox. Not eternal life, but one with more youth and less pain.
While the search for this master aging switch goes on, there is yet another way to produce longer-lived dogs, albeit one that may take sometime. We can change how we breed them, selecting first for longevity instead of for coat color, height, or the shape of the skull. In this way we could reset the evolutionary clocks of dogs – the clocks of danger that we spoke of in chapter 2 – so that dogs no longer resemble their short-lived ancestor, the wolf.”
Tagged: dogs, health, reading
Flea and tick sprays with natural ingredients like neem and cedar oil are great options for dogs and cats who live in places with a low risk of being invaded by these bugs. The best places to avoid fleas and ticks are low-humidity areas, a hot, dry climate or high altitude mountain states.
This flea risk map explains where the risks are greatest and lowest:
Flea risk map of the U.S.: Source: PetParents.com
And this map shows which types of ticks are found where. Deer ticks carry Lyme Disease. Scary!
Tick Distribution Map. Source: Petparents.com
If your pets have a low risk of parasite invasions, here are some great all-natural flea and tick sprays that we’ve personally tried on Tripawds Spokesdog Wyatt Ray. We’ve never once used topicals like Frontline, and he’s never had a flea or tick problem, so we know these all-natural flea and tick sprays are doing what they’re supposed to do.
Tripawd Wyatt runs in the mountains
You can feel good about reducing your dog or cat’s risk of flea and tick invasions when using all-natural flea and tick sprays. The only downside is you have to apply these sprays religiously at least every two days, and after each time your pets get wet, in order for them to work well.
We thought this worked well for flea-prevention, but didn’t do so great of a job keeping a tick or two off of him.
The active ingredients in Neem Protect Spray are Neem and citronella. Neem is a natural tree oil that has been used for thousands of years to repel lice, mites, flies, mosquitoes, fleas, gnats, and ticks and soothe itching and skin irritation. Neem Protect is safe and effective for dogs and cats 12 weeks and older
This worked great on both fleas and ticks, but the bottle leaked on us two separate times during shipping.
- Chemical Free – No Pyrethrins or Permethrins
- Kills & Repels Fleas & Ticks with documented residual for up to 7 days
- Use directly on pet and on pet bedding and surroundings
- Safe to use on puppies and around children and other animals
We really like this one. It’s scent is more pleasant than Natural Flea & Tick Spray for Dogs.
- Kills fleas ticks and mosquitoes on contact
- Safe for dogs and cats 12 weeks or older
- Pets may be treated indoors or outdoors
- May be used year round
This unique blend of Peppermint Oil and Clove Oil Extract was formulated to kill both live fleas and flea eggs and ticks, by contact, naturally and safely. Plus it soothes skin to leave pets comfortable and smelling fresh as can be.
We just started using this one and it seems to be working well. The scent is stronger than any of the aforementioned products, which leads me to believe that it’s longer lasting and we won’t need to reapply it as much.
Kills and repels fleas and ticks, yet it’s safe for use around children and pets when used as directed – even in multiple-pet households. Each easy-to-use pump spray features natural active ingredients such as peppermint oil, cinnamon oil, lemon grass oil, thyme oil and eugenol.
Tripawds Nutrition Blog: The Flea Dilemma for Cancer Dogs
Tripawds Nutrition Blog: Fight Fleas Naturally with Cedar Oil
PetMD: Where are Flea and Tick Populations the Worst?
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