Archive for October, 2011

If Dogs Could Talk

This was written by Sharon Hampton @

I am a dog. I am a living, breathing animal. I feel pain, joy, love, fear, and pleasure. I am not a thing. If I am hit, I will bruise, I will bleed, I will break, I will feel pain.

I am not a thing. I am a dog. I enjoy playtime, walk time, but more than anything I enjoy time with my pack – my family – my people. I want nothing more than to be by the side of my human.  I want to sleep where you sleep and walk where you walk. I am a dog and I feel love and crave companionship.

I enjoy the touch of a kind hand and the softness of a good bed. I want to be inside of the home with my family, not stuck on the end of a chain or alone in a kennel or fenced yard for hours on end. I was born to be a companion, not to live a life of solitude. I get too cold and I get too hot. I experience hunger and thirst. I am a living creature, a thing.

When you leave, I want to go with you. If I stay behind, I will eagerly await your return. I long for the sound of your voice. I will do most anything to please you. I live to be your treasured companion. I am a dog. My actions are not dictated by money, greed,
or hatred. I do not know prejudice. I live in the moment and am ruled by love and loyalty.

Do not mistake me for a mindless object. I can feel and I can think. I can experience more than physical pain, I can feel fear and joy, I can feel love and confusion, I have emotions. I understand perhaps more than you do. I am able to comprehend the words you speak to me, but you are not always able to understand me.

I am a dog. I am not able to care for myself without your help. If you choose to tie me up and refuse to feed me, I will starve. If you abandon me on a rural road, I will experience fear and loneliness. I will search for you and wonder why I have been left behind. I am not a piece of property to be dumped and forgotten. If you choose to leave me at a shelter, I will be frightened and bewildered. I will watch for your return with every footfall that approaches my kennel run.

I am a dog – a living, breathing creature. If you choose to take me home, please provide me with the things that I need to keep me healthy and happy. Provide me with good food, clean water, warm shelter, and your love. Do not abandon me. Do not kick me. Do not dump me when your life gets too busy. Make a commitment to me for the entirety of my life or do not take me home in the first place.

If you desert me, I do not have the means to care for myself. I am at the mercy of the kindness of people – if I fall into the wrong hands, my life will be ruined. I will experience pain, fear, and loneliness. If I wind up in an animal shelter, I have only my eyes to implore someone to save me, and my tail to show you that I am a friend. If that is not good enough, I will die.

I am a dog. I want to give and receive love. I want to live. I am not a thing. I am not a piece of property.  Please do not discard me. Please treat me with kindness, love, and respect. I promise to repay you with unconditional love for as long as I live.

October 19, 2011 at 6:08 am Leave a comment

Halloween Safety Tips

No Scaredy Cats This Halloween: Top 10 Safety Tips for Pet Parents

Attention, animal lovers, it’s almost the spookiest night of the year! The ASPCA recommends taking some common sense precautions this Halloween to keep you and your pet saying “trick or treat!” all the way to November 1.

1. No tricks, no treats: That bowl of candy is for trick-or-treaters, not for Scruffy and Fluffy. Chocolate in all forms—especially dark or baking chocolate—can be very dangerous for dogs and cats. Candies containing the artificial sweetener xylitol can also cause problems. If you do suspect your pet has ingested something toxic, please call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435.

2. Popular Halloween plants such as pumpkins and decorative corn are considered to be relatively nontoxic, but they can produce stomach upset in pets who nibble on them.

3. Wires and cords from electric lights and other decorations should be kept out of reach of your pets. If chewed, your pet might suffer cuts or burns, or receive a possibly life-threatening electrical shock.

4. A carved pumpkin certainly is festive, but do exercise caution if you choose to add a candle. Pets can easily knock a lit pumpkin over and cause a fire. Curious kittens especially run the risk of getting burned or singed by candle flames.

5. Dress-up can be a big mess-up for some pets. Please don’t put your dog or cat in a costume UNLESS you know he or she loves it (yup, a few pets are real hams!). For pets who prefer their “birthday suits,” however, wearing a costume may cause undue stress.

6. If you do dress up your pet, make sure the costume isn’t annoying or unsafe. It should not constrict the animal’s movement or hearing, or impede his ability to breathe, bark or meow. Also, be sure to try on costumes before the big night. If your pet seems distressed, allergic or shows abnormal behavior, consider letting him go au naturale or donning a festive bandana.

7. Take a closer look at your pet’s costume and make sure it does not have small, dangling or easily chewed-off pieces that he could choke on. Also, ill-fitting outfits can get twisted on external objects or your pet, leading to injury.

8. All but the most social dogs and cats should be kept in a separate room away from the front door during peak trick-or- treating hours. Too many strangers can be scary and stressful for pets.

9. When opening the door for trick-or-treaters, take care that your cat or dog doesn’t dart outside.

10. IDs, please! Always make sure your dog or cat has proper identification. If for any reason your pet escapes and becomes lost, a collar and tags and/or a microchip can be a lifesaver, increasing the chances that he or she will be returned to you

October 12, 2011 at 3:21 am Leave a comment

Eight Most Popular Dogs

The Labrador retriever is the most popular dog, according to the AKC.

The American Kennel Club generates a yearly list of the most popular dog breeds. The list is based on registration statistics. The popularity of a certain breed may be due to such things as seeing it in a movie, on a dog show or being owned by someone famous. Whatever the reason, a popular dog does not always mean it will be a good pet for your family. Each dog has a unique set of characteristics that may not be appropriate for your lifestyle.

Labrador Retriever

  • The Labrador retriever is a hunting dog that has held the number one spot for the last 20 years. This dog was originally bred in Newfoundland, working alongside fishermen retrieving nets and fish. Labradors are family-friendly dogs.

German Shepherd

  • German shepherds are herding dogs that were originally bred in Germany as farm workers. Today, the police and military commonly use German shepherds for protection. This breed is strong, fearless and protective. German shepherds became popular many years ago because of the movie “Rin Tin Tin.”

Yorkshire Terrier

  • The Yorkie is a toy dog with a large personality. This brave little dog was originally bred in England to catch rats. The Yorkshire terrier has long, silky hair that requires lots of brushing. This dog travels well, making it ideal for a busy family.


  • The beagle is a hound that was originally bred in England to hunt rabbits. It is one of the oldest hound dog breeds. This breed initially became popular from Snoopy in the comic strip “Peanuts.”

Golden Retriever

  • Golden retrievers were originally bred in Scotland as hunting dogs. Today, it is commonly used as a guide dog or for search and rescue. This dog is a trusting, friendly and loves children.


  • Bulldogs are strong, have a gentle disposition and form strong bonds with children. They were originally bred in Britain as fighting dogs. The short nose of this breed makes it prone to overheating in warm weather.


  • Boxers are powerful, intelligent and versatile.  They were originally bred in Germany as hunters for large game such as wild boar or bison and would hold the animal down until the hunter arrived. Boxers are able to stand on their hind legs to battle an opponent. This dog requires very little grooming.


  • Dachshunds were originally bred in Germany as badger hunters. This dog has a keen sense of smell. Dachshunds have three coat varieties: short-haired, long-haired and wire-haired. It is an adaptable dog to most living environments.

By Michelle Wittenberg,
eHow Contributor

eHow is an online how-to guide with more than 1 million articles and 170,000 videos offering step-by-step instructions. eHow articles and videos are created by freelancers and cover a wide variety of topics

October 5, 2011 at 4:47 am Leave a comment