I am not going to say much about this article other than this is kinda eye-opening. It kinda makes sense as to why it happens but also leaves a lot of unanswered questions. I guess we will have to figure out what those answers are:
Dog lovers have no doubt noticed that smaller dogs live longer than large ones, and now there’s a scientific study to back that up, as well as a few hypothesis as to why this is true.
When compared to the lifespan of other mammals, “smaller size, longer life” would at first glance appear to be counter-intuitive, especially to families that have gone through short-lived pet rats (2 years), hamsters (3 years), or gerbils (4 years).
In the non-pet category, chimpanzees live shorter lives than humans — about 45 years vs. 70 years — and elephants have a lifespan comparable to humans. This is nothing, of course, compared to the bowhead whale. Weighing in at up to 65 tons and sixty feet long, current estimates place its maximum lifespan at 200 years.
Following this logic, then, we should expect a Great Dane to live longer than a Chihuahua, but that’s not the case. The former only live, on average, 6 or 8 years, while the latter can live up to 18 years.
As it turns out, while bigger species of mammals live longer than smaller ones, within species it’s reversed. While the following example may be anecdotal, it does indicate that even humans are subject to this rule; Wilt Chamberlain, the professional basketball player, was 7’1” tall and died at 63. Jerry Maren, the 4’3” actor best known as one of the Lollipop kids in the 1939 version of “The Wizard of Oz,” is still alive at 93.
The effect is even more pronounced in dogs, which have a more extreme range of sizes. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the largest dog, a Great Dane named Zeus, was about as big as Wilt Chamberlain, measuring 7’ 4” feet in length and weighing 155 pounds. The smallest living dog is a Chihuahua named BooBoo, at 4 inches tall and 1.5 pounds.
For comparison, applying that size difference to the shortest verified human, 21 inch tall Chandra Bahadur Dangi, would give us a tallest human at about 31’ 5”. Going in the other direction, with 8’ 11” Robert Wadlow as the tallest human, the same size ratio would make the shortest human just barely under 6 inches tall. Incidentally, Chandra is still alive at 73, while Wadlow was only 22 when he died.
Recently, scientists tried to determine why this is the case. In a study led by Dr. Cornelia Kraus, a research scientist and lecturer at the University of Göttingen in Germany, researchers analyzed data on age of death in over 56,000 dogs from 74 different breeds, and were able to put a number on it. They found that, for every increase of 4.4 pounds of body weight, a dog’s lifespan decreased by 1 month.
The next step will be to determine why larger dogs live shorter lives, but the scientists already have some ideas. At its simplest, larger dogs die younger because they age more quickly. They age more quickly because they grow faster. This can lead to earlier incidence of tumors and other abnormal tissue developments, including cancer. It can also contribute to abnormal development, leading to physical conditions impacting health.
Dr. Kraus’s study, “The size-lifespan trade-off decomposed: Why large dogs die young,” will be published soon in The American Naturist.
Bed bugs were a common problem in the ‘60s but seemed to dwindle down for a while. Recent reports of bed bug infestations have shown that these pesky parasitic creatures that feed on human hosts are back and are becoming a serious issue. Bed bugs have popped up everywhere from five star hotels to senior centers and family homes. With increased bed bug cases reported, a number of questions have risen about these infestations. Dog owners are beginning to wonder whether or not bed bugs can affect their four legged companions.
Can a dog get bed bugs?
“Technically it can happen but the short answer is no,” says Water Penny of Colorado Bed Bug K9, LLC. Bed bugs prefer to feed on human blood and unlike fleas and ticks; they are not bioengineered to move through fur and hair. Penny explains that while bed bugs do not seek out canine hosts that everything is dependent on the level of infestation and if the problem gets extreme enough, it’s possible that bed bugs may infiltrate a dog’s bed as a secondary source of food. “It becomes an overcrowding issue. If there is no other place for them to go then they will go to alternative food sources and that would be cats, birds, dogs and other mammalian pets. What I tell my clients though is they will walk over 50 cats and dogs to get to us. We’re the primary food source so when you find them in a dog’s bed, that’s the least of your problems, and it’s miserable for the poor dog but you’ve got more serious issues going on. You’ve got a massive infestation!”
If you do find bed bugs in your dog’s bed here is what to do:
“Generally, the dryer is your best friend. Depending on the size of the dog bed or if it’s got a zip off cover, just throw it in the dryer for 20 to 30 minutes. You can wash it but it’s the heat that really takes care of it and gets both the adults and the eggs,” says Penny.
What to know about bed bugs:
Bed bugs, scientifically known as Cimex lectularius, are small parasitic insects that survive on blood. They are nocturnal and feed on their hosts when they are asleep, against their knowledge. Many people bit by bed bugs will show a tiny pink insect bite on their skin (similar to a mosquito or flea bite), however, thirty to fifty percent of the population does not physically react to the bites. Bed bug bites can also take several days to manifest themselves making it difficult to know when and where they might have occurred. Contrary to popular belief, bed bugs cannot fly, jump or teleport. They are strictly a crawling insect that enters your home through stowing away in things like luggage, furniture, and bedding. Aside from bites, a good way to spot bed bugs in your home is to identify bed bug fecal matter, which appears black, dark brown or reddish. Depending on the type of surface they are on, bed bug droppings will either bead up or be absorbed by the material around it. When inside a human environment, the average bed bug can live about a year. Bed bugs can live up to 70 days without a meal. Infestations that are left untreated can easily multiply and spread throughout a location such as an entire apartment complex.
Bed Bug sniffing dogs
The increased case of bed bug spotting has led to the use of canine bed bug detection services such as Penny’s Colorado Bed Bug K9 LLC. A dog’s sense of smell is so acute that it can locate a single bed bug with its nose!
Penny has been working as a bed bug inspector since 2008. In his daily detection work, he employs the use of his canine partner, Macaroni to sniff out bed bugs. “I got Macaroni when he was about 10 months old. He’s a rescue shelter dog – a whippet/lab/beagle mix,” explains Penny who jokes that he often refers to Macaroni as a “whable.” When Penny gets a call about a possible bed bug infestation, he grabs Macaroni and heads in to check things out. Penny places Macaroni on a lead and the duo enters a building. Next, Macaroni sniffs out the environment and searches for signs of bed bugs. “When he smells something, he’ll stop and he will stand there and sit down. Then he’ll point with his nose and he’ll freeze. I give him a treat and we play and I tell him how wonderful he is and then we get back to work,” explains Penny.
How to spot a bed bug:
The best way to keep an eye out for bed bugs is to educate yourself as to what they look like. Penny advises people to consult a pest control expert and to visit reliable Internet sources that reference symptoms, causes, and treatment of bed bugs. If you believe that you may have an infestation, do not let the problem grow to the point where it could affect you or your dog. Make a call and arrange to have an inspector come out and see if bed bugs are the problem. “There are other insects like bat bugs that are commonly mistaken for bed bugs,” says Penny.
How to prevent bed bugs:
When staying in a hotel or traveling, make sure to carefully inspect bedding (specifically the mattress, box spring, and headboard) and luggage for bed bug fecal matter before heading home. If you wake up with any bites on your skin, alert the hotel front desk and have them move you to a different room immediately. If you suspect you came into contact with bed bugs, unpack your suitcase outside your home and throw your clothes into the dryer to kill any possible bugs.
If you suspect that you have a bed bug infestation, make an immediate call to a bed bug detection company to investigate your claim. Perry notes that, “It’s very important that you do not try to solve the problem alone using over the counter chemicals. These can often make the problem worse by causing the bed bugs to scatter. Call a professional first before you do anything.” Once they identify a bed bug problem, your bed bug investigator will then direct you to a reputable pest control company to effectively remove the bed bugs from your home. Swift action is key in resolving the problem before it gets so severe that bed bugs become a nuisance to your dog.
Choosing the best dog for your kids is a very personal decision that depends on your family’s lifestyle, temperament, and budget. A dog should be compatible with your family to facilitate a smooth transition and a happy life for all parties involved. Here are some things to consider to help you choose the right dog for your children.
All dogs love physical activity and enjoy the outdoors, but your family has to be to be able to provide a certain amount of activity for certain dogs. Although a lot of children say that they like physically active dogs like Dalmatians, they actually require at least an hour of exercise every day. Children who are engaged in sports and outdoor activities will enjoy active dogs, but if they tend to stay in the house then they should probably find a dog with a similar temperament.
The type of dog you select will greatly depend on the type of living situation that you and your family have. Larger breeds like Labrador retrievers, German shepherds, and St. Bernards tend to be more suitable for people that own their own homes and have a significant amount of space for them to play and exercise. Ideally, larger dogs should live in pet friendly communities that offer a lot of parks and open spaces. People that live in apartments or urban areas should strongly consider smaller breeds like a Welsh corgi or beagle because they are more tolerant of being indoors. Another factor to consider is the type of climate you live in, because some dogs tend to be better suited for colder or warmer weather. Breeds like pugs and bulldogs tend to have respiratory problems when it comes to hot weather.
Another thing to consider before purchasing a dog is that some members of the family may have allergies. Any dog could trigger allergies, but there are few breeds like the Maltese, Portuguese water dog, or Shih Tzu that tend to be easier to manage for people who have allergies. Consult with your family doctor before selecting a dog if one of your children has allergies.
Grooming and Care
All dogs require proper care and grooming on a regular basis, but some breeds need more than others. Dogs that have long or curly coats may need to be groomed several times a week, which is generally not the level of care that most children can provide. It is better to stick with dogs that have shorter coats and require less maintenance if the children will be the ones taking care of the dog. Some of the older dogs or younger puppies may require some extra care and attention as well which may not be appropriate for children.
The cost of a dog is a lot more than the price you will pay for purchasing the dog. As a family, you will have to know how much money you can spend on the dog every month. Large breeds tend to be more expensive because they eat more food, their healthcare costs are more expensive, and they can be more difficult to accommodate as some apartments do not accept them. Smaller breeds also require certain expenditures, but generally not as much as the larger breeds. Purebred dogs not only cost more money up front, but they are usually the dogs that have genetic predispositions to certain types of health problems, while mixed breeds are not as susceptible. Either way, calculate the cost of the dog’s grooming, healthcare, and food to get an idea of what you will actually spend on the dog.
Purebred dogs will normally exhibit the same traits as other dogs in their breed while mixed breeds will usually have traits found in both breeds. The dog should have a similar temperament to your family in order to have the best match. Outgoing and gregarious children will do better with dogs that also tend to be more friendly and approachable, while more reserved children will do better with dogs of a similar cautious mindset. The entire family should meet the dog and see if they might be compatible before making the final decision.
Choosing a dog, especially one intended for your children, should be a decision you make with their input. Sit down with them and discuss what types of breeds will be suitable and let them know the level of care and commitment that you will expect from them. Think about what type of lifestyle you have as well as what your children are able to manage along with their schooling and extracurricular activities. Given that everyone’s situation is different, there will not be one type of dog that will be suitable for every family.
According to most veterinarians, a dog falls into the “senior” category around age seven. The size of a dog, however, affects this categorization. Smaller dogs mature slower and become seniors later in life than larger dogs. Animal shelters are filled with healthy and active senior dogs that are in need of a home.
When you’re thinking about picking up a dog from your local shelter, don’t look past the older dogs. They make great pets for a number of reasons.
1. Senior dogs at shelters need homes just as badly as younger dogs. Many older dogs were once owned and loved by someone. For whatever reason, they were given up and abandoned in a shelter and are in need of a home. Just like puppies and younger adoptable dogs, they make loyal and loving companions.
2. Adopting an older dog may save its life. Many people are quick to adopt puppies and younger dogs, often overlooking dogs over the age of five. Shelters are overcrowded and unfortunately, older dogs are among the first to be euthanized if they aren’t adopted in a timely manner. By adopting a senior dog, you are not only providing it with a better life but are also saving it from being put down.
3. Older dogs are not necessarily “problem dogs” as many tend to think. Senior dogs lose their homes for a variety of reasons, usually having nothing to do with their behavior or temperament, but more due to the fact that their owners are unable to keep them for reasons including: the novelty of owning a dog wearing off, allergies, death of a guardian, a new baby, loss of a job, a move, change in work schedule, and various other lifestyle changes. These dogs need homes just as badly as young adoptees do, and make wonderful household pets.
4. Older dogs usually come trained and understand at least basic commands. Most older dogs are potty-trained and have mastered the basic commands such as “sit,” “stay,” “come,” and “down.” Adopting an already-trained dog will save you a lot of time and energy that you’d normally have to dedicate towards training a young dog.
5. You can teach an old dog new tricks. Dogs can be trained at any age and older dogs are just as smart as younger ones. Older dogs have a greater attention span than a puppy, which make them easier to train.
6. Older dogs are calmer and less energetic than younger dogs. An adult dog has graduated from the puppy stage and has an established demeanor and temperament, which will give you an instant idea of how it will fit into your household. Older dogs have all their adult teeth and are out of the energetic puppy phase, which will result in less destruction to your home. Many of them do well with young children as they have a lower energy level and have possibly lived with them in their past homes.
7. Older dogs make instant companions. Unlike a puppy, which requires leash training, etc. an older dog is ready to accompany you on a long walk and already knows how to play fetch. An adult dog will make a great workout partner, a loyal companion, and a late night snuggle buddy.
For those of you who have adopted a senior dog, please share your stories in the Comments section below.
So the final post of the day is about Rare Dog Breeds. Of which I know very little about. Which is rare for me since I have an encyclopedia of dog breeds in my head. And I do know some rare breeds, just not many on this list. Enjoy.
Rare Dog Breeds
A dog with six toes on each foot? Split-nosed hunting dogs? Dogs specially utilized to located truffles in Italy? Check out our gallery of “Rare Dog Breeds” below. Click here to see photosand learn more about these rarely publicized breeds.
The Catalburun is one of only three dog breeds that possess the split nose feature (along with the Pachon Navarro and Andean Tiger-hound). They are native to Turkey and are virtually unheard of outside of the country. The breed is known for its agility and stamina. Catalburuns have one of the strongest senses of scent among other members of the pointer/hunter breeds.
So today, I am going to double up posts. I have two great posts about dog Breeds. Both are from Cesar’s way. Both are worth taking a look at. Enjoy!
Top 10 Dog Breeds
The American Kennel Club (AKC) has released the most popular dog breeds of the year. Some are sport dogs, some working dogs, and some are just cute. We take a look at the most popular dogs in the U.S., their history and some fun facts and famous examples of each them.Take a look belowto see if your dog made the list.
#1 – Labrador Retrievers
The most popular breed in America was developed in England from stock that came from Newfoundland, Canada. They come in black, yellow, and chocolate, and are strong swimmers and as their name would suggest, excellent retrievers. Originally bred to retrieve fishing nets, they have become one of the most popular working dogs, serving as guide dogs, therapy dogs, search-and-rescue dogs, and cadaver dogs.
Famous Labrador Retrievers: Bill and Hillary Clinton have owned two chocolate Labs: Buddy, who resided in the White House, and Seamus, who they adopted after Buddy was struck and killed by a car. Perennial Russian president Vladimir Putin’s dog Koni is also a Lab. Marley, from the best-selling Marley & Me is a yellow Lab. Old Yeller from the book and movie of the same name was a Lab.
Fun Fact: A Labrador can carry an animal in its mouth without hurting it. They can even carry an egg without breaking it.
Our four-legged friends love to curl up with us on the couch while we pop in a flick or watch our favorite sitcoms, but do they really pay attention to what flashes across the screen? The makers of DOGTV think so.
One of the latest crazes in canine stimulation is DOGTV, the brand new cable channel that provides 24 hours of dog-friendly programming that is “scientifically developed to provide the right company for dogs when left alone.” According to the network’s creators, the content for DOGTV was carefully crafted after years of research executed by leading pet experts. The channel’s programming is centered upon engaging a dog’s sense of vision, hearing, and supporting natural behavior patterns.
Idea Behind Dog TV
The idea behind the channel is that it will keep your dog occupied when you leave it home alone, resulting in a calmer, happier, and more relaxed companion. The shows on DOGTV consist of three to six minute long segments chalk full of a dog’s favorite things: grassy fields, balls bouncing around the screen, dogs playing together in the park, tummy rubs, and more. These active camera movements, shifting objects, creative animations, and animals making noises are designed to keep your dog stimulated and encourage a sense of playfulness, even when left home alone. The station also features segments which center upon helping to relax your dog and reduce his stress level through the use of soothing music, sounds, and visuals. In addition, DOGTV states that it uses “the most advanced veterinary science, special sounds, and visuals to help comfort and habituate dogs by exposing them to different day-to-day stimuli.”
According to the creators of DOGTV, the programming was specifically designed to cater to the attributes of a dog’s sense of vision and hearing. The programs are designed around a dog’s sense of sight and specifically colored to enhance picture details with dog-friendly brightness, contrast, and frame rate. The sounds on DOGTV are tailored to a dog’s sensitive hearing and are kept within a specific range of frequencies that won’t startle or annoy their ears.
Currently, DOGTV is available in the San Diego area on COX (Channel 2635) and Time Warner (Channel 148). The network plans to expand across the nation and encourages interested dog owners to touch base with their local cable/satellite provider for additional details of when it will be available in other areas.
Do Dogs Watch TV?
While DOGTV sounds like a fun idea, we’ve also heard many readers say that their dogs love to tune into episodes of Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan. Of course, Cesar would be the first to say that not every dog will react the same, and before you invest in DOGTV you should figure out whether your dog is the kind who will actually watch. Some dogs are more sight- or sound-oriented than others, and television is a pretty un-natural concept because, while it may have images of other animals on it, it does not smell like another animal. Therefore, a lot of dogs will completely ignore anything on TV, while other dogs will react to, chase, or bark at everything on TV. Sometimes this can be amusing and other times frustrating, although it can be useful in some cases. Cesar has used his own version of “dog TV” at the Dog Psychology Center in order to help dogs overcome phobias. For instance, to help rehabilitate a dog who was afraid of people, Cesar showed the dog video of people interacting with a dog up close. If your dog is the kind to pay attention to the TV, it can be a useful tool. But, of course, don’t let it take the place of proper exercise.
Sure, Memorial Day has come and gone (I should know – I went to Anime North) but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t celebrate how awesome dogs are. That is for all times of the year! Now listen to Caesar as he celebrates the Dogs of War:
This Monday is Memorial Day, when many of us will spend a nice long weekend with our families hanging out at the beach, having a picnic in the park, or grilling in the backyard. School’s almost out and summer’s almost here. Sometimes in all the fun, it’s easy to forget why we have this weekend in the first place—because so many of the ones we love are not here to enjoy it.
Memorial Day began after the U.S. Civil War to honor the fallen soldiers. The last Monday of every May has been observed ever since to remember the men and women who gave their lives to protect our freedoms. I myself give great thanks to these amazing people who have made the ultimate sacrifice, and I would include in my gratitude the working dogs of the military.
Since ancient Egypt dogs have been used during times of war and for other military uses. In World War I, they were used to deliver messages between units behind the lines. One of these dogs, Sergeant Stubby, became the first dog to be given a military rank, and received a national medal for his service. Dogs became used more and more in conflicts. Over 5,000 dogs served in Vietnam alone. They had a large presence in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan; and Cairo, a Belgian Malinois, joined Navy SEAL Team Six in the attack which killed Osama bin Laden.
Dogs have been able to provide valuable services to the military. With their powerful noses and compact sizes, they are able to accomplish things humans cannot. Their keen hearing makes them excellent sentries. Our men and women in uniform can sleep soundly knowing that their canine comrades will alert them if danger approaches.
Dogs are able to use the same skills they use at home as police dogs. They are able to track scents, detect bombs, and find bodies. They also can be used as scouts, going ahead of the humans in their unit to look for enemy combatants, explosive devices, or other dangers that might wait for them.
Dogs have become such important parts of the unit, that army psychologists say that when the unit loses a canine member, the grief in the rest of the unit can be as great as when a human member is lost. Dogs and their handlers become so bonded, that often upon discharge they live out their civilian lives together. Other soldier dogs transition to military hospitals upon retirement where they can serve as helpers or companions to the injured.
Many people might feel sorry for the dogs, who obviously don’t have much choice in the matter. They don’t join ROTC or go to a recruiting office. However, I’ve always believed that dogs who have a purpose thrive. Whether it’s herding sheep, leading the blind, or aiding the police, these dogs live fulfilling lives. Dogs have always bonded with humans and the bond that is formed in wartime is very powerful for the dogs and the humans.
This is not to say that these dogs don’t face the same issues that their human counterparts face. Many dogs have to deal with the constant stress of being in the field and the workload can burn many of them out. Dogs also experience post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which only now is being studied and treated and they often face great obstacles adjusting to a civilian life.
I was honored recently to be asked by the U.S. military to help out an Alaskan National Guard K-9 unit that was being used to sniff out bombs on the supply route between Afghanistan and Pakistan. Unfortunately that trip had to be canceled due to security concerns, but I hope to have the opportunity to work with military dogs again in the near future.
These dogs have saved countless human lives, sometimes at the expense of their own. They are often the line in front of the front line. And often, they are the first casualties. For every hero like Sergeant Stubby or Cairo, there are thousands of dogs whose names we’ve forgotten, or never knew, who have given their lives so their human comrades could live.
I hope everyone has a wonderful Memorial Day weekend. It’s a great time to be outdoors with your family and your dogs and enjoy the blessings our country has been given. I hope you all take a moment to remember the brave women and men who have given us this gift. And when you play fetch or throw a Frisbee with your dog, I hope you remember all the dogs that gave their lives so that you can.
So, you read this mornings’ post and you’re ready to take the challenge! You’re ready to prove you know all there is to know about fleas & ticks! If you haven’t, go back to the main page and read up. Once you’re done, come back here and take the challenge!
Now that Flea and Tick Awareness Month is drawing to a close, we thought it would be fun to see how much you’ve learned. Take this short quiz to make sure you know the facts so you can protect your dog from fleas and ticks.
(Don’t look here until you have taken the test)
1. D. Adult female fleas can produce between 30 and 50 eggs a day, which can total over 2,000 eggs over a lifetime.
2. C. A flea can live for over 100 days.
3. D. Fleas may cause Flea Allergy Dermatitis and transmit tapeworm infections. FAD is an allergic reaction to the saliva exuded by fleas into bite wounds. Because fleas feed on the blood of their hosts, heavy infestations may also lead to anemia, and flea larvae may serve as an intermediate host to tapeworm eggs, which develop into maturity as the flea does. If the pet ingests the carrier flea while grooming, the tapeworm can then infect the pet’s intestine.
4. False. Ticks can be active throughout the year, even where it is cold. Ticks such as the Lone Star tick and the black-legged or deer tick can survive winter under leaf litter or in other microclimates