Saturday, August 27, 2011

When A Pooch Goes Poof!

It seems these days that more and more dogs are being kidnapped. One of the main reasons this is happening is the bad economy. Thieves who grab dogs can't afford to buy one of their own, so they will steal one so their kids can have a pet.

Many will kidnap breeds like Yorkshire Terriers or Pomeranians because their smaller size make it easier to pull off. They can sell them for a higher price and make a profit. Others will hold on to the dog until an owner puts out a reward sign and then wait until the reward goes up in price.

In the first seven months of 2010, there were 150 pets stolen from homes. This year there has been 224 thefts. That's an increase of 49M% from last year. Nothing is more precious than life and those who snatch family pets have little regard for that fact. They're opportunists who profit off another person's misery.

Tips On How To Avoid This

There are some steps dog owners can take to keep their pets safe.
  • If your dog is a pedigree, don't discuss the details about how much was spent. A savvy thief will latch on to that key piece of information and could target that person
  • Be wary of classified or internet ads. Many thieves will try to unload stolen pets that way. It's better to find them through a shelter or rescue group.
  • Keep your dog on the leash when walking it. If you do walk your dog off-leash, be sure that your dog remains in close proximity and very responsive to your commands.
  • When at the dog park, always keep an eye on your dog. It's easy to get caught up in conversation with other owners and lose track of your dog.
  • Make sure your dog is microchipped and has proper identification. With a microchip, if a dog gets away from its kidnapper, it will be easier to find his home. Likewise if your dog wears an id tag.

Even though stolen dogs are becoming more of a problem these days, with a little extra care and cautiousness, you'll be able to safeguard your pet.

Read More About It!

San Francisco Chronicle More Dogs Get Kidnapped For Money - USA Today

Let's Discuss!

What are some ways you keep your pet safe?

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Friday, August 19, 2011

10 Lesser Known Dog Breeds Of The AKC

Spinoni Italiano by Johan Michaƫlsson

A few days ago, I went with my mom to the Corner Bakery and came across this unusual yet lovable dog. When I asked the owner what type of dog it was, she told me it was an Italian Spinoni (pictured above).

It made me think that with over 167 breeds, there are a few dogs that some dog lovers never even heard of or that have a small, devoted following. I wondered which dogs were not as popular and the top 10 and came up with the following breeds. One of the best things about getting a breed that is less popular is owners will not have to worry about over breeding.
Note: This does not mean that these dogs aren't great dogs, just dogs with fewer numbers.

So here are some of the more unknown dogs of the AKC. See if your dog made the list:

Ranked #158
Finnish Spitz
Known as the national dog of Finland, the Finnish Spitz is known for its hunting
skills and is great with children. It's a friendly dog yet cautious with strangers. They vary in shades of red but you will not find them only in that color.

It measures 16 to 20 inches (38-51 cm) and weigh 25 to 36 pounds (11-14kg). This breed is slow to mature. He is known for his thick coat but is a dog that can adapt to all temperatures. He is independent yet trainable and will shed quite a bit.

Ranked #159
Norwegian Buhund
Known as the dog of the Vikings, this dog has a rich history. The word buhund is derived from bu (meaning farm in Norwegian) and hund (meaning dog). These medium-sized dogs have a height of 16 to 18.5 inches (41 - 47cm) and a weight of 26.5 to 40 pounds (12 to 18kg). It has a coat in various colors such as white, wheaten, red, black and wolf sable. They have a short and harsh outer coat and a soft, wooly coat underneath.

Photo: Muu-karhu
Like the Finnish Spitz, this dog will shed heavily during the change of seasons. However, this dog is more of a shepherd than a hunting dog. It's high-energy is great for active families and ideal for children. Not only are these ideal shepherd dogs, they are also used as police dogs, tracking or therapy dogs. They are excellent watchdogs yet are friendly and have a gentle disposition.

Ranked #160
Skye Terrier
The Skye Terrier is a beloved breed to the people of England and Scotland. Originating from the Isle of Skye (islands northwest of Scotland), this is a true terrier in every sense of the word.

With a height that puts this breed low to the ground at about 10 inches (25.5cm) and having a weight that falls between 25 to 40 pounds (16-18 kg), this distinctive breed stands out for many reasons. All Skye Terriers have a body that is twice as long as their height.

They have a long outer coat, and soft, wooly undercoat which shields them from the brush. This is a dog that will be high-maintenance for grooming. Their colors include black, blue, gray-blue, dark or light gray, silver platinum, fawn or cream. Some you will find accented with white on their chest or black points on their ears or paws. They also have two types of ears: prick ears which stand up and dropped which fold over. Dogs with dropped ears tend to be more rare of the two.

Queen Victoria was a big fan of this dog. It doesn't require a whole lot of exercise and an every day walk is adequate for them. While they are an affectionate and loyal dog, this breed isn't for everyone. It's ideal for single individuals or senior citizens. It's a good breed for apartment dwellers. Being a terrier, it's likely to chase small animals. They are close to family but reserved with strangers.

Ranked #161

The Otterhound is a large dog that loves the water. This scent hound was originally bred to hunt otters, that has since fallen out of favor since sea otters have been added to the list to protect them from extinction. Like the NewFoundland these dogs are expert in the water and have webbed feet.

They are big dogs, standing 24 to 26 inches high (60-65 cm) and weighing anywhere from 66 to 115 pounds (30-52 kg). They

They are a dog that love the outdoors as well.They need to be in a living environment where they have plenty of room in the backyard and are taken on a long walk every day. They are eager to please and are wonderful therapy dogs. They are great around children and are a friendly breed but their large size and clumsiness may be overwhelming for some people.

While they love other dogs, they are liable to chase other animals such as cats. Training is challenging because this breed can be quite stubborn. They will need firm boundaries and they tend to get into messy situations. They will grunt, snort and drool. Still, they are good watchdogs and have a sweet disposition.

Ranked #162
Pyrenean Shepherd

Originating from the Pyrenees Mountains in France, these shepherd dogs are quite small compared to other breeds. They are 16 to 19 inches (40 - 48) in height and 25 to 32 pounds (11 - 14.5kg) in weight. You will find them in a multitude of colors and hair types. There are some that are smooth-faced and others that are rough-faced.
Photo: Ulyssebleu
Bred, with a job to do, these dogs don't like to sit still. They require much time for socialization but are highly trainable and intelligent. They are excellent candidates for agility. They need space to run and have a very high activity level. They are great with kids but wary of strangers.

Ranked #163
Canaan Dog
The Canaan Dog is an true beauty from the country of Israel. Considered one of the oldest breeds, has been around since the ancient middle ages (2000 BC). Known for their intelligence and independence this dog adapts well to most situations but can be hard to train since it needs a strong pack leader. Some may be good fits for apartment living but most will be comfortable in a larger living environment.

They range between 19 to 24 inches (48 - 61 cm) tall and weigh anywhere from 37 to 57 pounds (16 - 25 kg). They come in a variety of colors which include white, red, black or brown or have patches in two colors (like white and black). Their thick double coat isn't too long. It doesn't require as much grooming but will moderately shed throughout the year.
Photo: Yigal Parado
They are calm dogs who have a shepherd background. They are more versatile than a hard-core shepherd dog like the versatile which makes them open to trying new things. They are excellent with young children and other animals as they consider them members of the pack. Canaan Dogs thrive in agility and tracking. They make an excellent guard dog. Still, these dogs will train best with an experienced dog owner since they can have a manipulative side and require firm leadership.

Ranked #164
Dandie Dinmont Terrier

These terriers have an unusual name having been named after a Walter Scott novel from the 19th century. These adorable little dogs first popped up in southwestern Scotland. Basically bred for hunting vermin, these dogs have a similar look to the Dachshund and Skye Terrier.

Photo: Bonfire Buddy
Its colors are primarily Pepper, which is bluish-black, and mustard, which is variations of golden brown. They have a coat that needs to be regularly trimmed but minimally sheds. They are known for their big brown eyes and domed heads and are one of the oldest terrier breeds from Scotland.

These dogs have medium energy levels but will love to chase animals. They are trainable and respond best using positive reinforcement methods. They are ideal for an apartment setting due to their small size. They measure between 8 to 12 inches (20 - 30cm) tall and weigh between 18 to 24 pounds (8 - 11kg). They are reserved with strangers and very protective of their home like most terriers.

Ranked #165
The Harrier looks very similar to the Beagle, but actually descends from the English Foxhound. They love to hunt rabbits and hares just like Beagles. These dogs are truly a rare breed with only 8 dogs registered last year in Canada alone.

They are 18 to 22 inches (48 - 55cm) and weigh anywhere from 45 to 60 pounds (20.4 - 27.2kg). Their colors are very similar to Beagles where you will find them with black, white & tan, red & white, black & tan, black, tan & white, lemon & white, tan, open-markings with lots of white and white.

They can be very vocal and make good watchdogs. They are outgoing and love people and other dogs. They are very people-oriented and are excellent family companions. They are the type that must be in a fenced-in yard because they will wander if they break free. They do have a stubborn and independent streak, so obedience training is a must for this breed.

Ranked #166
American Foxhound

The first American Foxhound was brought here in 1650 by Robert Brooke. These dogs are larger than their Harrier and Beagle counterparts. They are 21 to 25 inches high (53 - 64cm) and weigh about 65 to 75 pounds (29 - 34kg). Their coat can be any color but most of the time it will have two colors. It's a scent hound as well. When the dog fixates on a scent it will take quite a lot to get him to listen.

These dogs are famous in the Southeastern areas of the United States, like Virginia. Virginia has embraced this breed by naming it its state animal. American Foxhounds are true hunters.

American Foxhounds are calm and even-tempered. They love to run! Since they love to run and hunt, a home or farm environment is best for this breed. They don't care to be indoors unless it's to spend time with family. They get along great with children because of their gentle and tolerant nature. They will also get along with small animals if they're socialized at a young enough age.

Speaking of socialization, these guys can be tough to train and housetrain. They are best handled by experienced dog owners. Like the Harrier, this dog has a short coat and requires minimal grooming. They are also known for their loud howling voices.
Ranked #167
English Foxhound
The English Foxhound is one of the oldest breeds from America. It is also the rarest breed with only 17 dogs registered here in the United States. George Washington was especially fond of this breed. The main difference from the American Foxhound is that they are thicker and shorter. The English Foxhound will also resemble a Beagle more whereas the American Foxhound will resemble a pointer with their head shape.
Photo: AKC
This dog leads an active lifestyle and is best living in a large home or rural environment. Exercise is a must with this breed as is firm leadership. Both make great running companions, and this dog is good for accompanying horseback riders.

It is 21 to 25 inches high (53 - 63.5cm) and weigh 65 to 70 pounds (29.5 - 32kg). They have short, dense coats that are easy to groom. Their coloring is very similar to the American Foxhound. They work well with older children but young puppies of this breed may be too rambunctious for younger dogs.

All in all, the dogs above show that you don't have to be popular to be remarkable.

Let's Discuss!

What do you like most about these dogs? Have you ever had a rare breed?

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Friday, August 12, 2011

All dogs need insurance

They say that a dog is a man’s or woman’s best friend. The second we bring a pet dog into our lives is the second that we welcome them into our family as one of our own.

This is why dog insurance is so important for protecting your dog’s health. The sad fact is, that many dog owners have had to put down their dog simply because they could not afford the veterinary bills.

Unfortunately veterinary costs are rising all the time. If your dog broke a bone for example, the x-ray alone would cost in excess of $200. Dental surgery could cost over $160 and if your pet dog was unfortunate enough to catch an ongoing disease such as diabetes or asthma, the ongoing treatment for the lifetime of the dog could reach up to $10,000.

In this video from MoneySupermarket, Sheila from one of the many pet rescue centres talks about the importance of insurance for your pets.

Pet insurance video courtesy of

What a dog insurance policy can cover

A dog insurance policy covers much more than just the veterinary costs. Here is a list of everything that a dog cover policy can include.

Vet Bills – As discussed whether your dog as a one time or a life time injury or illness your policy can cover you from the associated costs.

Death Benefit – This can be paid out to you if your dog dies of an illness or accident. The payout is usually the price you paid for your pet or its market value.

Accidental Damage – If you dog was to cause damage to a third parties personal property this will cover the costs to replace the damaged property.

Third Party Liability – If your dog was to cause a car accident and someone was seriously hurt, you could be held liable for any damages and costs.

Theft/Straying – If your dog is stolen and not found usually after 28 days, the price you paid for the dog or its market value can be paid to you.

Advertising/Reward – Carrying on from the last point, your dog insurance will help pay towards the associated costs involved for advertising your missing dog and offering a reward.

Boarding Fees – If your dog has to have a prolonged stay in hospital then the costs for keeping them overnight can soon start to add up. Your insurance policy can cover these costs for you.

Holiday Cancellation – If you have a family holiday planned and paid for and you had to cancel it due to your dogs health, then your insurance will cover the money you would have lost. This only applies if your dog needs life saving surgery.

So, as you can see a dog insurance policy covers a lot more than just your dog’s health.

Today's post was written by Stefan Mustieles. Stefan is the proud owner of a Yorkshire Terrier called Ben. Writing for the price comparison website, he currently writes a number of diverse articles on all aspects of pet ownership.

Let's Discuss!

How has having pet insurance made a difference for you?

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Saturday, August 6, 2011

When One Is Under The Weather

Sometimes, when I'm sick, I'll notice a complete change in my dogs. They'll stay by my side and not nag at me to let them out like they usually do. It's as if they sense that I'm not operating at 100 percent, they adjust.

Dogs have this uncanny ability to detect when something is up. When a human is emotional your dog will smell the difference in the air. Many dogs can detect cancer, seizures or if a person is unconscious because of this keen instinct.

While all dogs are different, I think many will sense when their owners are sick.

Let's Discuss!

How is your dog different when you're sick?

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Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Get Up and Go Giveaway Winner

Hello Everyone!

I was amazed by all the entries in this contest. You guys totally rock. Since there were lots of tweets, I decided to choose the winner at random on

Below is the list of all the entries who entered within the contest timeframe:

  1. Abby
  2. Abby Tweet
  3. Wise Owl Designs
  4. Anonymous #1
  5. Just Coupons
  6. Just Coupons Tweet
  7. Julie D.
  8. Julie D. tweet
  9. vhubler
  10. vhubler tweet
  11. TonyaHopkins
  12. TonyaHopkins tweet
  13. roswell
  14. roswell tweet
  15. Kari
  16. Michele
  17. Terra H.
  18. maxfate
  19. maxfate tweet
  20. Pauline Milner
  21. Pauline Milner tweet
  22. Anonymous #2
  23. missbobloblaw
  24. Eileen
  25. Eileen tweet
  26. Mrs. Smitty
  27. Mrs. Smitty tweet
  28. cloud10277
  29. cloud10277 tweet
  30. TwoPeasInAPodOneDayAtATime
  31. Missy #1
  32. Grace Matthews
  33. Grace Matthews tweet
  34. ✿Heather S✿
  35. ✿Heather S✿ tweet
  36. manthas24
  37. manthas24 tweet
  38. Kristen
  39. katklaw777
  40. katklaw777 tweet
  41. jsc123
  42. Retro ReDesign
  43. Amy Sue's Place
  44. ruthhill74
  45. ruthhill74 tweet
  46. Jessca
  47. scottsgal
  48. Monica #1
  49. Monica #1 tweet
  50. amyd
  51. SuperMom3128
  52. TheSharpTeethOfLove
  53. TheSharpTeethOfLove Tweet
  54. tdean30
  55. My4boysand1
  56. My4boysand1 tweet
  57. Ann
  58. Jeanette Jackson
  59. Jeanette Jackson tweet
  60. Temperance
  61. Judy
  62. Passport To Frugal
  63. DHidey
  64. dailymom
  65. LisaWeidknecht
  66. LisaWeidknecht tweet
  67. polly
  68. Angel Jacklyn
  69. Angel Jacklyn tweet
  70. Becca
  71. Becca tweet
  72. pinkghosta
  73. bettycd
  74. bettycd tweet
  75. Ashley
  76. Stacy
  77. Jason & Bethany
  78. sononchalant
  79. Carolsue
  80. Michelle Spayde
  81. Michelle Spayde tweet
  82. pauline15
  83. pauline15 tweet
  84. Ericka
  85. Ericka Tweet
  86. Gina
  87. Connie Black
  88. Connie Black tweet
  89. Helen
  90. Helen tweet
  91. Erin
  92. Erin Tweet
  93. Mippy
  94. Tammilee Tillison
  95. Christie B.
  96. amanda
  97. Krissie McCoy
  98. Krissie McCoy tweet
  99. amied027
  100. amied027 tweet
  101. Denise McDonough
  102. Missy #2
  103. maryjaco1
  104. Tara Trovitch tweet
  105. Tara Trovitch tweet
  106. Lynda
  107. Lynda tweet
  108. Sarah Sparks
  109. Monica #2
Congratulations to Ruthhill74! Her tweet was the winning entry.

Thank you all for entering. I loved hearing how you all "get up and go" with your dogs. I'll be back with another contest soon.


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