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Barbara Dobbins

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Barbara Dobbins has been writing for WDJ since 2011 with a focus on veterinary and canine health topics. Her lifelong fascination with dogs has led her in many directions. As a youngster she would round up her dogs and horse for a day of adventure exploring and searching for buried treasure in the California hills. Inspired by Margaret Mead with a nod to Indiana Jones, she went on to study anthropology, archaeology, and museum studies and obtained a masters degree in art history. Then two new puppies bounced into her life, and Barbara launched into studying animal behavior and training and spent hundreds of hours volunteering in the behavior department at her local shelter. When her beloved Border Collie Daisy was diagnosed with a rare cancer, she dug deep to research all she could about the disease, and has written extensively about all sorts of canine cancer for Whole Dog Journal. Liaising between pet owners and veterinary practice, science, and research, she synthesizes these complex and data-driven subjects into accessible information. She continues to take inspiration from her two research assistants, mixed-breed Tico and Border Collie Parker.

Latest Blog

Disaster Readiness – Yes, Again!

If you have been following the weather news, you might have guessed what this post was going to be about, am I...

"You're leaving us again, aren't you?" Spending long days at the emergency animal shelter, where pets displaced by local fire are being cared for by volunteers. It's hard on our own dogs, but at least they have homes. ...

One dog is enjoying our evacu-cation in a hotel more than the other.

Our neighborhood is under a mandatory evacuation due the the #bearfire, but we don't think our house is actually in danger currently. The fire went FAR, FAST, night before last, so they wanted folks out of the way. The wind has died down and the fire line is holding. In the meantime, like Woody, we will try to enjoy ourselves, until we can get back home.

My thoughts go to those who lost homes and animal friends. Best local relief org:
https://www.nvcf.org/donate
...

#noon #nofilter #cafires #smoke ...

If I was half as brave as this pup, there isn't anything I couldn't do.

Dogs are the best, man. Surgery 24 hours ago and he is doing great. Thanks for the well wishes.
...

Stuff that's wrecked. Surgery day tomorrow. Send us good juju! ...

I know, it's a *terrible* idea to let the 70 lb pit-mix play with the puppy with the broken leg... but for crying out loud!

Vet has ascertained that the puppy's left hock was broken weeks ago, and is beyond reasonable or certain repair. So the little guy is going to have it amputated soon. In the meantime, he is a puppy... and Woody is golden. Ah, my heart. This puppy is killing me!

Fortunately, he has an adopter lined up and ready to take him.
...

Rip out your heart and hand it over. This tiny foster guy, found in a ditch and covered with fleas, has a badly broken rear leg, needs amputation. Working with a local rescue to get his surgery scheduled STAT. Hosting until he has surgery, recovers, and can find a perfect home. ...

He's a fishing dog, belongs to a fisherman. (He is actually fishing for crawdads, his dad says he catches as many as a dozen a day!) ...

When the forecast is over 105 for the next week... ...

Grandson watched an episode of Stranger Things with his older cousin and was too scared to go to sleep last night. We called in the sleep specialist for help. Woody is a champion snuggler...problem solved. ...

One dog worries about me more than the other. ...

JUST found out it's National Mutt Day! Celebrate your mutt! Woohoo! ...

You don't need to see his eyes to read their message: Come outside. Now. ...

Made it through the war, I mean the night. Thank dog for modern pharmaceuticals. ...

The lip *and* a dork ear. This guy just slays me with his cute. ...

"Mom, I think we need to talk about Woody's addiction." ...