Whole Dog Journal Blog

Frustration and Heartbreak on the Road to Saving Sick Puppies

December 13, 2018 - I wasn’t certain the pup would make it through the night, but she did. And while she had, as the vet put it, “reduced mentation,” not responding like a well puppy, when I spoke to her and praised her, she would wag her tail and brighten. She lapped weakly at water and broth and watered/down canned A/D (food for debilitated dogs) that I syringed into her mouth or held in a spoon on her lips, but would get a little panicky if too much went into her mouth at once.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 12:11PM Comments (0)

Updates on Dog Food Recalls, the Camp Fire Aftermath, and My Sickly Foster Pups

December 6, 2018 - In my neck of the woods, we still have a huge ongoing mess to sort out with trying to reunite animals with their people following the devastating Camp Fire. Currently, there are three temporary emergency shelters that are caring for hundreds of dogs and cats (and other animals). It’s hard to get exact figures, but more than half of the animals have not yet been identified by any owners, for many reasons.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 10:52AM Comments (22)

Camp Fire: More Notes from a Disaster Area

November 29, 2018 - Tens of thousands of people and animals have been affected by the fire, and thousands of people are helping those displaced. Several emergency shelters were hastily set up to contain pets. Some of the pets were left at the shelters by owners who were themselves homeless and staying in shelters; many more were rescued and brought to the shelters with either an address or rough estimate of where they had been rescued from.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 10:38AM Comments (33)

Camp Fire: Notes from a Disaster Zone, Part Two

November 21, 2018 - Within a day, there were more than 1,000 dogs, cats, chickens, ducks, pet birds, snakes, and more at these shelters. Large animals including horses, cows, goats, sheep, and pigs were taken to other shelters. Care and feeding of the animals – not an insignificant task that involved taking dogs out of their cages to potty, and cleaning cat boxes – fell to NVADG volunteers.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 10:56AM Comments (11)

Camp Fire: Dispatch from a Disaster Area

November 15, 2018 - By midday November 8, the “adopt the puppies” project was forgotten; all local media and social media was about evacuation, emergency shelter sites for evacuated people and animals, and rescue. This fire had a name, the Camp Fire; it was so named after the road closest to the place where it started, Camp Creek Road.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 09:28AM Comments (23)

Some Dog Food Recalls Are More Critical Than Others; This One Is Critical

November 8, 2018 - On November 2, the FDA announced a voluntary recall by Nutrisca pet food. Three sizes of a single variety of Nutrisca dry dog food, Chicken and Chickpea, was found to contain dangerously high levels of vitamin D. The FDA also announced a voluntary recall by Natural Life Pet Products, whose Chicken and Potato dry dog food in 17.5-lb. bags was also found to have dangerously high levels of vitamin D.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 10:16AM Comments (2)

A Glut of Puppies at My Local Shelter

November 1, 2018 - The shelter broke up this litter of 10 into two groups, and altered the four largest, healthiest puppies first; this happened two weeks ago. Those four puppies went up for adoption while I was out of town for six days, and every day while I was gone, I checked the shelter website to see who got adopted. Not ONE got adopted!
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 12:06PM Comments (67)

Coming Home to My Dogs

October 24, 2018 - Like most dog owners, my dogs top the list of things I have to deal with when I come home from a trip. I was away from home for five nights and six days, having traveled to Memphis for the Association of Professional Dog Trainers’ annual conference (which was awesome), and then one extra night in San Diego, to watch my son compete in the national championship for his sport.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 03:41PM Comments (8)

Pat Miller Honored with APDT’s Lifetime Achievement Award

October 18, 2018 - I felt strongly compelled to make the journey to Memphis to see Pat honored in this way, because she’s been extremely important to WDJ from day one and remains so today. You can read more about her professional accomplishments in this press release from the APDT, but if you don’t mind, I’d like to tell you about why I appreciate Pat Miller.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 11:16AM Comments (9)

National Association of Professional Petsitters

October 11, 2018 - The “professional” dog walkers have all but taken over all of the dog parks in the area, too – so much so that many of the cities that host these parks have had to pass local ordinances capping the number of dogs that any one person can bring at one time to the parks. And I have to say that for people who seem to have a full-time occupation, none of the folks I saw were being all that professional.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 11:37AM Comments (10)

Any Bright Ideas for Encouraging Spay/Neuter?

October 4, 2018 - I live in a low-income rural town in a low-income rural county in far northern California. It’s only about three hours from the affluent communities in the San Francisco Bay area, but it may as well be an entirely different country, for all the differences in how dogs are commonly kept and treated here.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 09:12AM Comments (23)

Hold Off on Those Oral Flea-Killing Medications

September 27, 2018 - On September 20, the FDA issued a communication for pet owners and veterinarians, warning about the potential for neurologic adverse events following the administration of certain flea and tick products to dogs and cats. The products named in the release are oral products, available by veterinary prescription only, that contain isoxazoline-based ingredients. These include Bravecto, Credelio, Nexgard, and Simparica.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 09:45AM Comments (23)

Fostering Puppies Who Are Just Too Young

September 20, 2018 - Yes, puppies again. My local shelter called yesterday to ask if I could foster a litter of 10 pit/German Shepherd/who-knows-what-mix puppies. Well, sure, of course; I will always say yes if I am not on my way out of town or something. But this group is seriously challenging. Why? They are too young to be separated from their mom.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 11:03AM Comments (19)

Zero Tolerance for Choke Chains?

September 12, 2018 - I did notice that the dog had been wearing a choke chain when I took the picture. I take pains to avoid using pictures of dogs who are wearing choke chains, pinch collars, or shock collars in Whole Dog Journal. I firmly believe that dogs can be trained without these tools, and I want to show our readers well-behaved, well-trained dogs wearing flat collars in the magazine. I want our models to, for the lack of a better word, “model” the kind of training that we promote.
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 03:30PM Comments (54)

What is the Best Source of Puppies?

September 6, 2018 - Responsible breeders are more concerned about placing their puppies in the right home, where they will thrive and be a blessing to their new families, than they are with making money. If it’s not a little bit difficult to find someone to sell you a puppy – to prove you are up to their standards – then you probably don’t want that puppy. Puppies bred specifically for sale, like produce, with the goal of bringing income to a family – you don’t want that puppy!
Posted by Nancy Kerns at 09:37AM Comments (19)