Category Archives: Community

I Like Big Mutts and I Cannot Lie

By Lauren Myers

Happy National Mutt Day! Mutts are so awesome, there are actually two days dedicated to celebrating how much they rock. We celebrate their awesomeness on July 31st and December 2nd , in order to raise as much awareness as possible for our furry, four legged friends. There are an alarming amount of mixed breeds (and dogs in general) at shelters Terrier_mixed-breed_dogacross America. More than 75% of the shelter population consists of mutts! That number, alone should encourage anyone to drive to their local shelter and adopt. If you’re still not sold, here are some other reasons why mutts rule and purebreds drool… Literally!

Mutts can come in any shape, size or color you’d like! I, personally love my mutt big, fawn colored and squishy faced, like Clifford (a famous mutt). Apartment or city dwellers may enjoy the company of a smaller, noise tolerant, not-too-much-space-necessary pup. Don’t have $1000.00 lying around for a Shih Tzu? That’s OK! You can find yourself a mutt with Shih Tzu in him or one that resembles your favorite breed without having a drop of that breed in it’s DNA. Do you live on a few acres with livestock? Get yourself a collie mix, a cattle dog mix or a lab mix with endless amounts of energy and herding abilities! Most adoption fees range from completely free to $300. That’s reason alone to love mutts.

Crossbreeds and mutts are similar, but different. A crossbreed is two specific breeds, intentionally bred together to get a “designer” breed. Your Doodles and Poo’s and Chi- weenies are crossbreeds, but still tend to be healthier than their purebred parents. Mutts are more involved than your crossbreed friend. Mixing genes gives your furry family member a better chance of not living with the threat of strange allergies, cancers and other genetic diseases passed down from generation to generation. A healthier dog means a longer, happier life with your furry friend. Who wouldn’t want that?

pexels-photo-68718Something fun to do with your four legged friend is a DNA test. You have the chance to find out what specific breeds make up your uniquely put together mutt. Your veterinarian can run a test that is pretty fool proof by a simple blood draw. They tend to cost a decent amount, so you can also order a DNA test online that requires a simple cheek swab. A great test to search for is the “Wisdom Panel 3.0 Breed Identification DNA Test Kit”, found on Chewy.com and costing less than $90. It detects about 250 breeds so you’re bound to find out what your mutt consists of! Finding out what your mixed breed is made up of can help you better understand his or her needs and personality traits.

Lastly, there are a paw-full of organizations that would like to celebrate mutts along with you. Country singer, Miranda Lambert started a donation supported organization called MuttNation Foundation. Say that ten times fast. The mission is to end animal cruelty, neglect and homelessness. There are marches each year to raise awareness and help adopt out as many shelter pets as possible. Nutz4Mutts.com is a fun website that celebrates your mixed breed with funny videos, proud apparel and helpful tips on what’s best for your breed of mutt. There is also a website dedicated to this very day called NationalMuttDay.com, which takes the cake as far as celebrating goes. Let’s honor our Benji’s and our Old Yellers, by doing something great for a mutt in your own neighborhood. If you cannot adopt a shelter pet, you can donate your time at your local shelter or send a few bags of food their way. Any little bit helps and they appreciate even the smallest token of love. Think about your nearest and dearest mutt today and tell the world why you love them and cannot lie.

K9 Veterans Day— March 13, 2017 By Erika Lombardo and Dr. Aliya McCullough

“The capability they bring to the fight cannot be replicated by man or machine. By all measures of performance, their yield outperforms any asset we have in our inventory.” –General David Petreaus

1024px-K-9_Andy

Dogs are called “man’s best friend” for many good reasons. They love us unconditionally, they are quick to forgive, and we beam with pride when they show off their tricks. Dogs are incredible animals and many dogs have done extraordinary things in their short lives. On this day, we recognize some of the most notable of these canines: Military Working Dogs (MWDs).

Many troops have come to rely on MWDs to help keep them safe and assist them in their jobs. These dogs are specially trained to detect explosives, seek out illegal drugs, look for missing troops, and target enemies. Not only are they active on the front lines, but behind the scenes they can also serve as therapy dogs and service dogs. Their visual, auditory, and olfactory senses are superhuman. Did you know that dogs have 10-20 times the scent receptors in their nose and the area of their brain devoted to smell is very large? MWDs can detect intruders from 200 meters with little or no wind or up to 1000 meters away in windy conditions!

There have been some famous canine war heroes in our history. A German Shepherd mix named Chips was one of the first dogs trained and sent overseas. He was responsible for many enemy surrenders and he was awarded the Silver Star, Distinguished Service Cross, and the Purple Heart. Another very decorated war hero was Sergeant Stubby. The only dog to achieve the rank of Sergeant, Sgt. Stubby was found as a stray on the campus of Yale in 1917 and then smuggled into France during WWI by his adoptive owner. He went on to save his regiment from surprise mustard gas attacks and even captured a German spy by his pants! Gunner, a Kelpie, was known for his remarkable hearing. He was able to warn of troops of an encroaching  Japanese aircraft 20 minutes before it could be seen on radars. Air raid sirens were sounded when Gunner gave the warning, he was that reliable!

Sgt. Stubby
Sgt. Stubby

According to the U.S. Department of Defense, there are around 2700 active duty MWDs  in our country’s armed forces. These MWDs are deployed all over the world with a large number of them stationed in Iraq and Afghanistan. Originally, there were over 30 breeds trained to be MWDs but recently that list of breeds has been narrowed down to 7: German Shepherds, Dobermans, Belgian Sheepdogs, Huskies, Farm Collies, Eskimo dogs,  and Malamutes. Only 50% of dogs who start training actually pass and go on to serve. Their typical span of service is around 8 years. Prior to the year 2000, dogs who finished their service were considered  “military surplus equipment” and it was thought that they could not properly adjust to civilian life. In these instances, the dogs were abandoned or euthanized. In the year 2000, President Clinton passed a law called “Robby’s Law”, this allows MWD handlers and their families to adopt the dog after completing its military service.

Military Working dogs, when trained, are worth tens of thousands of dollars, but when it comes to the security, peace of mind, and companionship they provide to their fellow soldier, they are priceless. Today, we remember all those exceptional canines who have selflessly served our country.

“The one absolutely unselfish friend that a man can have in this selfish world, the one that never deserts him and the one that never proves ungrateful or treacherous is his dog.” –George Graham Vest

Join us for Pictures with Santa!

 

Friday, December 16th, 9am – 12pm and 1pm – 4pm
An elf will be available to escort you to Santa!
A donation is welcome and will be used for a patient who is less fortunate and unable to afford veterinary care.
*All cats must be in carriers and all dogs must be on a leash. Pictures are on a first come, first served basis.

Calling All Halloween Lovers!
Send us a photo of your pet in a costume and you could win a $50 gift card to our hospital!

To enter:
Like our Facebook page and send us a direct message on Facebook with your pet’s photo by Sunday, October 23rd.

On Monday the 24th we will post all of the photos in an album and then voting will begin! Vote for your favorite photo(s) by “liking” them or using your favorite reaction. The photo with the most “likes”/”reactions” will be our winner and will be announced on October 31st!

We encourage you to share your picture, or the album, with your friends and family to increase your chances of winning.

Good luck and may the best costume win!

*One photo per pet. If you have won a contest more than once, we ask that you please split the prize with the 2nd place winner. To keep this lighthearted and fun, pictures shared to “like for like” groups or those similar, or others deemed unfair or inappropriate, will be disqualified.

2015 Halloween Contest Winner – Buster