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Dog Days of Summer 2018 Central NH & VT

Is Your Dog a Good Citizen? Hit The Open Road with Your Cat

Alternative Pet Diets Tick Prevention! The Dogs of the Titanic

Inside this issue of 4 Legs & a Tail


3. August 15th is National Check the Chip Day Erin Forbes, DVM Is your pet's chip up to date? 6. Wings of Hope Honor the loss of loved ones with 4,000 butterflies on September 8th. 9. The Woodstock Dog Club The annual American Kennel Club (AKC) All Breed Dog Show comes to Tunbridge, VT July 12 & 13.

10. He Said They Were Hosting a Tetrathlon…. A What?? Tim Goodwin Featuring the four disciplines of Shooting, Swimming, Horse Riding, and Running, check out this family fun event this summer

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12. What is a CGC Test? Judith Suarez Is your dog a good citizen? 14. Use of the Modified Maquet Procedure to Treat Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Injury in the Dog Charles Hutchinson, DVM 16. Create A Tick Free Zone Creative landscaping tips to reduce ticks at your home 18. The Potential Hazards of Fireworks to Wildlife, Water and People Catherine Greenleaf 20. Mounting Health Benefits of CBD Products Learn more about the positive effects of cannabidiol for your pets

22. Pets and Mold The signs that your pet may be suffering from mold exposure 24. 3 Simple Tips for Teaching Your Dog NOT to Pull on the Leash Chet Womack 26. UGH!!!!!! My Dog Won’t Listen! 3 Reasons Why Your Dog May Not Be Following Your Commands Paula Bergeron 28. 10 Reasons to Get a Dog When You’re Over 50 29. Five Surprising Things You Didn't Know About Dogs Marty Becker, DVM 30. RVing With Cats: What You Need to Know Heather Marcoux Some helpful tips when you hit the road with your favorite feline 34. Pasture Strategies for Horses with Metabolic Disorders Nicole Sicely Summer 2018

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Inside this issue of 4 Legs & a Tail


38. Heels Down Sue Miller Finding the right balance between horse and rider

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40. Chimneys Again Scott Borthwick You would be amazed at the "guests" that may be living in your chimney

42. Not Just Nutrition: Environmental and Social Causes Behind Pet Food Brands Holly McClelland 44. Don't Get Ticked Off, Get Ticks Off Connor Day Expert tips to battle tick season 46. Alternatively Speaking: Are Raw Foods Right For You? Dr. Anne Carroll, DVM, CVA 48. New Puppy FAQ's Elisa Speckert


50. Overgrooming in Cats Catherine MacLean This is something that a lot of owners discover by accident or it’s found by a veterinarian on a cat’s physical exam much to the owner’s surprise

54. Does My Dog Have Dental Disease Sandra Waugh, VMD, MS If your dog is 3 years of age or over and does not receive routine dental care, then it is very likely, YES

56. An Ode to Pen Karen Sturtevant A touching story of the love of an English Bull Dog 60. Gaining Ground on Habitat Loss Julie Longstreth Ways to help our New England wildlife thrive 62. Sadie Mae or May Not David Merrill How one stray made it from Puerto Rico to the good life in New Hampshire

64. Dogs of the Titanic: Three Who Survived Kate Kelly Pg. 62

4 Legs & a Tail Volume L.218 P.O. Box 841 Lebanon, NH 03766 603-727-9214 2 4 Legs & a Tail

66. An Improbable Friendship For one small town in Minnesota, a dog and duck make for an interesting pair

Publishers: Tim Goodwin, Tim Hoehn Senior Editor: Scott Palzer Graphic Design: Kristin Wolff, Lacey Dardis Kate Haas Sales: Karyn Swett Scott Palzer

If you have a tale about a tail or a photo that will make us smile, we’d like to hear from you. 4 Legs & a Tail is published quarterly and distributed free of charge throughout Central VT & NH. 4 Legs & a Tail, Inc. is locally owned and operated and acts as a moderator without approving, disapproving or guaranteeing the validity or accuracy of any data or claim. Any reproduction in whole or part is prohibited.

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August 15th is National Check the Chip Day Erin Forbes, DVM Vermont Veterinary Medical Association


icrochips greatly increase the chances that pets will be reunited with their families if they are lost or stolen, and the majority of veterinarian offices can give one to your pet. A microchip is a tiny object, no bigger than a grain of rice that can be injected under the skin of your pet. The procedure is no different than a vaccination. Using a special scanner, the microchip can be detected and a number unique to your pet is shown, along with the company that made the chip. An animal control officer, shelter, or veterinarian can then call the company and track down the owner using that number. Statistics show that one in three pets will become lost at some point during their lives, and cats and dogs with registered microchips are much more likely to be returned to their family. Microchips only work if the information on the chip is kept up to date. If an owner does not know if their pet has a microchip, they should make an appointment to have their pet scanned by their veterinarian. If they do have a chip but are unsure of who it is registered to, owners can go to www. and access the Universal Pet Microchip Lookup Tool provided by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA). The tool allows users to enter the code from the microchip and will direct owners to participating microchip registries associated with that microchip’s number and manufacturer. Owners can then update the information associated with the chip as needed. Continued Next Page

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In a recent study published by the Journal of the AVMA research showed that microchipping greatly increased the chance a lost dog or cat would be reunited with their family. In dogs without a microchip there was a 22 percent chance of being returned to their family but with a microchip that rose to 52 percent. For cats, better results were obtained: about one in 50 cats are returned to the owners, but when microchipped, two of five cats were reunited with their family. Implanting a microchip is a simple procedure: the chip is embedded under the skin using a hypodermic needle, similar to those used for vaccinations. No surgery or anesthetic is needed and this procedure can be done during a routine visit. The chip will then be scanned, added to the medical record, and owner’s will be given information on how to register the chip. If your pet gets lost, an office or shelter can scan for a chip, and if found can contact the owner associated with the chip. The VVMA urges pet owners to talk with their veterinarians to learn more about proper identification for their pets, schedule an appointment to have their pets microchipped, and make sure their pets’ microchips have up-to-date information that will ensure a happy reunion if their pets ever become lost. The Vermont Veterinary Medical Association (VVMA), founded in 1898, is a professional organization of 360 veterinarians dedicated to compassionate animal care and quality medicine.

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Wings of Hope Danielle DeVost


ver 400 Monarch butterf lies take to the skies at Colburn Park in Lebanon, New Hampshire for Visiting Nurse and Hospice for Vermont and New Hampshire’s (VNH) annual memorial butterfly release event, Wings of Hope. This event provides a unique and special occasion for families, friends, VNH staff, and the community to come together to honor lost loved ones. Following a short program of readings and beautiful music, participants release their butterflies. Some fly away immediately, while others land on shoulders and fingertips,

wanting to stay a while. There is something so captivating and magical about watching the delicate winged creatures as they launch and softly dance away into the sky. It is a powerful experience, whether you are there as part of the grieving process or for a time to share happy memories with others who are experiencing similar feelings of loss. There are smiles and laughter, tears of sadness and joy, and mostly feelings of peace and uplift. For some, this is when the healing begins. In order to make this event a reality, the butterflies are overnight shipped from Flutterby Gardens in Bradenton, Florida. They are housed in glassine envelopes, inside a thermal box with an ice pack, which creates just the right temperature for the butterflies to safely travel. The thermal box is then packed in an outer corrugated shipping box. Butterflies are cold-blooded insects, which means that the cooler they are, the calmer they are. When they arrive at VNH, the ice packs are changed to keep the temperature controlled. “My number one priority during this time and during the event is the health of the butterflies,” said Danielle DeVost, VNH Marketing Specialist, who organizes the event. “I check every few hours to ensure that the temperature is just right for the butterflies, not too hot and not too cold.” Wings of Hope is from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m., and the butterflies are handed out when people start arriving around noon. This gives the butterflies time to warm up, wake up, and be ready to take flight after the butterfly blessing at the end of the program. People are encouraged to keep the butterflies out of direct sunlight during the program and to hold onto the envelopes very gingerly to avoid injuring the fragile insects. Continued Next Page

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According to the International Butterfly Breeders Association, Inc., in order to ship butterflies across state lines for release, breeders must obtain a permit from the USDA-APHIS-PPQ-SS (United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Protection Service, Plant Protection and Quarantine, Scientific Services). There are strict guidelines, and the USDA permits butterflies to be released only in states that have an appropriate habitat. The question is, do captivity-raised Monarchs retain their instinct to migrate? The answer is yes, as decades of research has proven it. The Monarch Watch organization, based at the University of Kansas, has distributed to schools (throughout states east of the Rockies) thousands of larvae in educational kits resulting in classroom rearing, tagging, and releasing of thousands of Monarchs. Dozens of these butterflies have been recovered at the Monarch overwintering sights in Central Mexico. This year’s Wings of Hope event will be held on Saturday, September 8. The event is free and open to the public and you do not need to purchase a butterfly to attend. Proceeds from the event support VNH Hospice care across the region. Visit for more information.

Danielle DeVost is the Marketing Specialist for VNH, a non-profit organization that has provided home health and hospice care services in Vermont and New Hampshire since 1907. She is a resident of Wilder, Vermont and a graduate of ColbySawyer College in New London, New Hampshire. In her free time, she enjoys spending time outdoors kayaking and hiking as well as spending time with friends, family, and her adorable and cuddly cat, Minnie. Summer 2018 7

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he annual American Kennel Club (AKC) All Breed Dog Show will be July 12 & 13, 2018 at the spectacular Tunbridge Fairgrounds. Green Mountain Dog Club will be hosting the show on July 14 & 15. They expect about 100 different breeds with 700 or more entries each day. Owners and professional handlers come from all over the US and Canada with many local dog fanciers as well. Renowned judges come from all over the country and internationally to judge at the shows.

What does all this mean? You are invited to attend any day with complimentary entrance fee on Thursday and Friday. Judging starts at 8:30 a.m. all days. Come see your favorite breeds and meet new breeds! Talk to dog fanciers and learn about the sport of dog showing, obedience and rally trials. Vendors will be on hand with dog and human related items. Food vendors will provide the necessary nourishment with Maple Creamees for dessert!! The Woodstock Dog Club has been a member of AKC since 1957. They hold monthly meetings with speakers and presentations of interest to members. Most recently, they learned about AKC Scent work, the newest addition to Performance Events. They also had one of the Vermont State Police K9 teams come talk to about how the dogs are trained and what they do to help the VSP officers. Annually, we hold health testing clinics for all dogs. To learn more about the club, visit our Facebook page or website for more information.


A dog show is where dogs compete against each other and are judged based on the breed ‘standard’. The dog that wins ‘Best of Breed’ will then compete in their respective Group (Hound, Toy, Sporting, etc.). Winners from each Group will then compete for Best in Show! Breed judging is usually completed by around 2pm when the Group judging will begin followed by Best in Show. Over the 4 days, there will be 4 All Breed Conformation Dog Shows, 5 Obedience and 4 Rally Trials. There will also be a 4–6 month old Puppy competition and on Friday, a Best 6-12 month old Puppy competition. Best Veteran competition will be Saturday. Thursday and Friday, during Group judging, there will be an Ice Cream Social and Saturday night an always popular BBQ, Beer tent and live music! Tickets for this event are available at the show. Summer 2018 9

He said they were hosting a Tetrathlon...

A WHAT?? Tim Goodwin


t must have been 5 or 6 years ago now that I ran into a friend from high school. Since his name is the same as mine, I am proud to say I remembered it. We spent a few minutes catching up. I had just started a magazine for Pet and Animal lovers with my partner (ironically with the same first name). Tim proceeded to tell me about the Tetrathlon his family was hosting at their farm. Yeah, so it took me awhile, but I finally followed up this year. A Tetrathlon is a four part competition that is the precursor to the Pentathlon in the Olympics. The competitors who qualify will go on to the regional competition and potentially have to opportunity to represent their country at the Olympics. The four disciplines are Shooting, Swimming, Horse Riding, and Running. The Pentathlon would be those four disciplines plus fencing. It has been a part of the Olympics since 1912. The sport was created by French Baron Pierre de Coubertin. It was meant to combine all of the aspects of combat: swordsmanship, marksmanship, the ability to control a horse in the arena and cross country, and the physical ability to cross many miles on both land and water. Fun history note: Continued Next Page

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George Patton (later to become General George C Patton) finished 5th in the 1912 Olympic Pentathlon. Nowadays, the Tetrathlon is a fun event for all age groups to try, and I really enjoyed watching it. Although, I was a little bummed out to find the swimming was done alone and not with the horse. The horse event takes place in a ring and includes jumps and a few gates that need to be opened and closed, once on the horse and once dismounted. The different skill levels get different heights for the jumps. It is a timed event. The running part involved obstacles for the runners and was either 500 meters or 1000 meters(about 1/3 or 2/3 of a mile). The shooting was done seated for the youngest competitors, with 2 hands for the next group and one hand for the more advanced competitors. The swim was for different lengths, for the different levels, from 25 to 200 meters. The atmosphere was very friendly and encouraging. Music was played between riders, and although there was a little rain, folks were lined up on the hill to watch and support each rider. This was the White Mountain region’s qualifying event for the USPC National Championships, in Mill Spring, NC. It will be held at the Tryon International Equestrian Center July 25th - 29th. Who knew there was an event in Meriden, NH in June, to possibly qualify for an Olympic event? My hosts were Tim and Sally Hebert of Meriden, NH. Their beautiful home and barn sit on top of rolling hills offering great views of the surrounding mountains. The barn feeds directly into an indoor arena that they use to warm up, and for the shooting part of the event. Their big smiles were contagious, as they hosted many happy riders, horses and family members for the two day event. The 2018 White Mountain Qualifying Tetrathlon is Saturday, June 2nd (Riding and Swimming) and Sunday June 3rd (Running and Shooting). It will be held at Ring Brook Farm, 143 Harriman Road, Plainfield, NH.

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What is a CGC Test? Judith Suarez

I s your dog a “good citizen?” Most of us would like to think of our

Good Citizen training as the first step in training their dogs. The Canine dogs as great companions, who also have Good Citizen Program lays the founexcellent manners. But if asked by an dation for other AKC activities such insurance company or a landlord, we as obedience, agility, tracking, and might have trouble proving our point. performance events. That is one of the driving forces behind the American Kennel Club’s Canine Good Citizen (CGC) Test. It is a super way to demonstrate to others that our dogs have what it takes to be responsible and well behaved. Started in 1989, the CGC Program is designed to reward dogs who have good manners at home and in the community. It is a two-part program that stresses responsible pet ownership for owners and basic good manners for dogs. Since its inception, it has had an extremely positive impact in many of our communities. This is a program that can help us assure that the dogs we love will always be welcomed and well-respected members of our communities. Many dog owners choose Canine

But perhaps more importantly, CGC training for humans and their dogs helps keep dogs from entering the rescue system. And astounding 98% of dogs who have passed CGC tests, according to AKC research, remain in their homes. It is a pleasure for both dogs and those around them to have a solid background in what “being a good dog” actually means. Having skills like walking on a loose leash around other people and dogs, being able to sit on command, waiting for a minute or so while the human walks a few feet and returns, coming when called, and staying calmly with a stranger are all elements of having good manners – and are all elements in a CGC test. When you work with your dog to teach the CGC skills, you’ll discover the many benefits and joys of training your dog. Training will enhance the bond between you and your dog. Dogs who have a solid obedience education are a joy to live with – they respond well to household routines, have good manners in the presence of people and other dogs, Continued Next Page

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and they fully enjoy the company of the owner who took the time to provide training, intellectual stimulation, and a high quality life. All dogs, including both purebred and mixed breed dogs, are welcome to participate in the AKC’s Canine Good Citizen (CGC) Program. Dogs must simply be old enough to have received necessary immunizations such as rabies vaccines. After passing and registering the testing, the AKC provides a certificate. Many insurance companies accept proof of CGC testing as the qualification for homeowners insurance. Landlords, who do not always take companion animals, also accept proof of good manners from a CGC test before renting their property to dog owners. Best of all – it is fun. Whether you take a training class or do the work on your own, the feeling of success when your dog can complete the ten elements of a CGC Test is amazing. And the dogs all seem to know they have done something brilliant, as well. Oddly enough, even for those of us who go on to do many other “tests” with our dogs in obedience or sports like agility, the feeling of passing a CGC is a fond memory. CGC Tests feel like a “real world” experience. There are other people and other dogs Summer 2018

around. The elements are practical and clear. And the cheering from observers and helpers is a real ego boost. The AKC website has a wealth of information on the CGC Program. You can check it out at dog-owners/training/canine-good-citizen/what-is-canine-good-citizen/ Judith Suarez is the Training Chairman for Pioneer Valley Kennel Club, an allbreed AKC club based in Greenfield MA and offering year round training in Brattleboro VT. 13

Use of the Modified Maquet Procedure to Treat Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Injury in the Dog Charles Hutchinson, DVM - Lebanon, NH


CL injury is by far the most common reason for acute hind limb lameness in the dog. Data suggests that ACL injury may account for up to 90% of acute hind limb lameness. The injury can occur due to a bad step or slip, or some dogs simply seem to have weak ligaments that rupture spontaneously. Conservative management with rest and anti-inflammatory therapy is often helpful but ultimately disappointing, especially in large or very active dogs due to the subsequent development of osteoarthritis. Surgical treatment is generally recommended as the best course of action to provide a more likely long term good prognosis. This article describes the Modified Maquet Procedure (MMP) which is the most recent advance in ACL surgery for dogs. The anterior cruciate ligament is so named because it attaches towards the anterior or front of the stifle (knee) joint. Its primary function is to prevent anterior motion (sliding forward) of the tibia (lower leg bone) relative to the femur (thigh bone). With a deficient ACL we see a “drawer motion� as indicated in the diagram below. Continued Next Page

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The ultimate goal of surgical repair is to restore normal function and activity. 75% of dogs undergoing an MMP will regain previous levels of unrestricted athletic activity without significant complications. Some dogs that have preexisting arthritis will retain some stiffness post operatively so early intervention is the key to a successful outcome. One of the older methods and one that is often applied with success in small dogs is typically referred to as “extra-capsular fixation� where a type of suture or implant is anchored to the bones of the femur and tibia in an attempt to prevent the abnormal motion that would have been normally stabilized by the ACL. This procedure is still widely used today but often does not preserve pre-injury activity level, especially in larger dogs. The first real advance in ACL surgery, the tibial plateau leveling osteotomy (TPLO) was first described by Dr. Slocum in the 1980’s. Although it was much better at preserving normal function it is costly and complex. A newer technique was pioneered by Dr. Tepic in Switzerland in 2002 called the tibial tuberosity advancement (TTA). The TTA was easier and had had fewer catastrophic complications than the TPLO. The MMP is based on the TTA procedure but is an advance that allows for quicker

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surgery with even fewer complications. Orthomed began work on developing the MMP in 2005 subsequent to the development by a Canadian company of a bioactive titanium implant material. To date over 35,000 dogs have been successfully treated with this method. The MMP uses a wedge-shaped titanium implant and like the TTA the MMP advances the tibial tuberosity (where the patellar tendon attaches) more anteriorly so that the muscles of the thigh provide more stability to the joint using a biomechanical correction, rather than a strictly orthopedic repair. After making a cut in the tibia the tibial crest is advanced to accept an appropriately sized implant and stabilized with a pin and staple. Orthomed only provides the equipment to veterinarians that are trained at one of their seminars to ensure that all practitioners performing this surgery are in fact properly trained. Unlike the TPLO which disrupts the integrity of the entire tibia, dogs undergoing a TTA or MMP typically leave the hospital following surgery bearing weight on the affected leg and are typically walking normally within 4-6 weeks. By 8-10 weeks, unrestricted activity can typically be undertaken and most are back to normal, pre-injury function by 6 months post-op.

Remember, best outcomes are typically more likely when surgery is performed on the injured stifle sooner rather than later so if your dog is limping have your veterinarian perform an exam as soon as possible. Charlie Hutchinson, DVM is the owner of Cardigan Veterinary Clinic, Upper Valley Veterinary Services and The Dog House in Lebanon, NH. 15

Create a



urs was an old fashion, New England winter. In fact, the spring was also a cold and snowy winter. While we all hoped the near record cold would alleviate the tick problem this summer, the combination of leaf debris and snow provided enough

ground cover to do little to eliminate the tick issue. According to Theron Peck, Turf Division Manager at Chippers, “No matter what the winter weather, ticks are surviving and making a strong presence. The deer tick is probably the most infamous as it carries the serious Lyme disease, Anaplasmosis and Babesiosis. The dog tick includes Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Tularemia.” As tick collars and topical products fly off the shelves of pet stores and feed and supply companies, the Department of Health has other ways to protect your pets and family using landscaping techniques, to create a tick-safe zone around homes, parks, and recreational areas. Ticks that transmit Lyme disease thrive in humid wooded areas. They die quickly in sunny and dry environments. Here are some simple landscaping techniques to help reduce tick populations.

• Remove leaf litter and clear tall grasses and brush around homes and at the edges of lawns.

• Place wood chips or gravel between lawns and wooded areas to restrict tick migration to recreational areas.

• Mow the lawn and clear brush and leaf litter frequently.

• Keep the ground clean under bird feeders. • Stack wood neatly and in dry areas.

• Keep playground equipment, decks and patios away from yard edges and trees. Continued Next Page

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DISCOURAGE DEER Ticks that transmit Lyme disease can be found on deer. Actions to control deer movement or populations in communities are usually initiated at the local level in consultation with your state wildlife agency. However, there are actions you can take at your property that may help reduce deer populations around your home.

• Do not feed deer on your property. It may be necessary to remove bird feeders and clean up spilled birdfeed. • Construct physical barriers to discourage deer from entering your yard.

• Check with garden centers, nurseries, or local extension agents to learn about deer-resistant plants.


• Bait boxes that treat wild rodents with acaricide (insecticide that kills ticks) are now available for home use. Properly used, these boxes have been shown to reduce ticks around homes by more than 50 percent. The treatment is similar to products used to control fleas and ticks on pets; it does not harm the rodents. Bait boxes are available from licensed pest control companies in many states.

• Other methods for controlling ticks currently under evaluation include vegetation and habitat modification, devices for applying topical acaricides to deer, fungal agents for biological control, and natural extracts that safely repel ticks.

While we certainly hope the techniques mentioned in this article successfully reduce the tick populations in your landscape, you will most likely need a control program that includes spraying, at least in the short term. “Chippers offer several tick reduction sprays including organic options to satisfy concerns to children, pets and animals and the environment,” says Peck. It appears that the tick issue is here to stay, but with a solid tick control plan, it doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy the outdoors.

Ryan Terrill of Bradford, VT caught this cute picture. How long before Arson outgrows the box?

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The Potential Hazards of Fireworks to Wildlife, Water and People W

ith the 4th of July holiday fast approaching, you may be planning to light up some fireworks to celebrate. However, you may not be aware of the potential harmful effects of fireworks on wildlife and water quality, not to mention humans. Fireworks create large black clouds full of toxic heavy metals that

Catherine Greenleaf

can remain airborne for days and may poison plants, trees, wildlife, waterways, and people, according to the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services. According to the New Hampshire State Fire Marshal’s office, most of the fireworks sold in the U.S. are manufactured in unregulated

factories in other countries. These fireworks can contain sulfur-coal compounds and radioactive ingredients like barium, strontium, cadmium and rubidium. They may also contain ammonium perchlorate, which can contaminate surface and ground waters and disrupt thyroid function, according to the Fire Marshal’s office. Fireworks have recently become a particular concern near recreational lakes that provide drinking water to neighboring towns. Polychlorinated dioxins, arsenic compounds and hexachlore benzone, all commonly used in fireworks, are known carcinogens, according to the DES. Some fireworks contain phosphorous, which promotes cyanobacteria blooms and fish kills in lakes, making the water unsafe for swimming. But it doesn’t stop there. Some research is showing the lead dioxide and nitrate chloride found in fireworks may pose a developmental danger to unborn babies, and recent findings are suggesting that autistic children exposed to the toxic heavy metals of a fireworks display can suffer a heightened severity in their symptoms. A number of towns and lake protection associations in New Hampshire have recently taken action to protect wildlife and lake water quality from the potential toxic contamination of fireworks, including Pleasant Lake in New Continued Next Page

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London, and Mascoma Lake in Enfield, to name just a few. Several have limited the use of fireworks to just weekends or the evening of July 4th and have initiated strict ordinances requiring special permits, fees, and property inspections. Some towns have done away with fireworks altogether. The deafening noise of fireworks has the potential to scare wild birds, like loons, off their nests. According to wildlife biologists, some reports claim loons have been so startled by the sudden loud noise of fireworks on lakes they have panicked and trampled their own eggs and chicks in an attempt to flee from their nests. Studies conducted by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Department revealed that loud noises like fireworks can frighten birds and cause them to break their necks from flying into buildings and windows in the dark. A 20-minute fireworks display can cause birds to become so disoriented they are unable to find their way back to their nests and young. The study also showed roosting birds near the ocean can fly so far out to sea to escape the noise, they end up drowning. In 2010, thousands of RedWinged Blackbirds died in a terrified panic while roosting in trees near a fireworks display in Arkansas. Animals like deer and foxes can flee in blind terror onto busy roads and highways. Fireworks often reach a decibel level of 145 and above, while hearing loss can occur at 85 decibels in humans. Wildlife researchers argue the decibel threshold for wildlife is much lower, and that fireworks could cause sudden and permanent Summer 2018

deafness in birds, mammals and other wildlife. Many towns have enacted strict noise ordinances in response to complaints of horses breaking out of their paddocks and dogs running away due to fireworks. Animal shelters all over the U.S. routinely report a sudden influx of stray cats and dogs after fireworks displays Also, veterans with PTSD can be traumatized by the sudden, loud noise of fireworks. The 35,000 fires caused by fireworks each year in the U.S. don’t just destroy buildings and forests. They also kill untold numbers of birds, mammals and other wildlife due to respiratory distress from smoke inhalation, according to wildlife researchers. The toxic debris left behind after a display can be eaten by birds and other animals. So what are you supposed to do if you are feeling patriotic on July 4th? Leave the fireworks to the experts and attend town-sponsored events located away from lakes, ponds and forested areas. Keep in mind that New Hampshire and Maine are the only two New England states that allow the use of consumer rocket-type fireworks that shoot up into the sky. Many states have banned the use of consumer-purchased fireworks or only allow the so-called “safe and sane� varieties, like ground fountains and sparklers. Some of these states are opting for outdoor laser light shows set to live or recorded music. Catherine Greenleaf is the director of St. Francis Wild Bird Center in Lyme, N.H. If you find an injured bird, call (603) 795-4850. 19

Mounting health benefits of CBD products bring new customers and their pets to Un-Dun’ I

t’s nothing new to Christine Clarenbach, owner of the eclectic combination vape bar, smoke shop and craft-beer hub, called Un-Dun’ tucked neatly on the busy corner between Main Street and Route 12 A in West Lebanon, N.H., she’s known about the benefits of CBD oil for years, long before she opened her shop in 2001. News coverage about the positive effects of cannabidiol (CBD), one of many cannabinoid molecules produced by Cannabis, has been prevalent over the past few years and is gaining momentum. Another molecule THC is the psychoactive component of cannabis but what makes CBD stand out is that it is non-intoxicating and yet has the ability to act on the cannabinoid receptors that are part of human and other mammals’ endocannabinoid system (ECS). That means that many of the positive

benefits that humans experience can also happen to their pets. In fact, the reason that plant cannabinoids have psychoactive and medicinal effects within the body is because of the endocannabinoid system (ECS) that they can interact with. It’s this ECS that helps the cells regulate to keep them on an even keel or maintain “homeostasis”. There is evidence, mainly from animal studies, that CBD may have neuroprotective, anti-inflammatory and analgesic (pain-relieving) properties, and potential therapeutic value in the treatment of motivational disorders like depression, anxiety, and addiction. More importantly than CBD just being in the news is the positive anecdotal evidence people are hearing from friends, neighbors, and colleagues who have started incorporating CBD into their lives and the lives of their pets and

have seen positive changes. For Un-Dun’, that means an increase in customers who may not have been a traditional customer in the past, but who are now seeking answers about CBD. First-time customer Dave Rock came to Un-Dun’ to get help for his two German Shepherds, Zoe and Bella, on the advice of his sister-in-law. Zoe had recently been in a fight and had just come home after 3 days at the vet hospital. Bella is older and has difficulty with mobility. Based on advice from staffers, Rock purchased Edibites, a dog treat with 3mg of Cannabinoids in each snack. According to Rock, within four hours of eating their treats, Zoe was up from her bed and walking around and Bella was running with ease. Although Rock had

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no experience with CBD before, he’s a fan now. “Makes me think I might want to try it for myself,” he said. According to Christine, “customers have either read the positive health benefits or know someone who is using CBD and that brings them to us asking more.” That’s where her terrifically knowledgeable staff and her many CBD products come in. Un-Dun’ has shelves and shelves of all different kinds of CBD infused products including topical creams and salves, tinctures and vapable oils, and edibles like gummies, chocolates and other snacks. Their products for pets are extensive as well and include dog and cat treats, pet specific oils and topicals. The staff doesn’t just point to products though. Staffers like Department Manager Chris Wentworth know every detail about each product, how the CBD oils are extracted, their concentrations and what products will work best for you. He also takes pride in the quality of their selection saying, “95% of our products are extracted with CO2 which produces a very highly concentrated, full spectrum product.” Un-Dun’ is located at 1 Main Street in West Lebanon. They are open seven days a week, Monday - Saturday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Sundays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Summer 2018 21

Pets and Mold M

any homeowners know that mold can make people sick but not as many know about pets and mold. Exposure to household mold can make pets sick, too, and in fact they may get sick faster than people do when exposed to mold since they are so small, much like infants are more susceptible to moldrelated illness than adults. Common Symptoms of Mold Exposure in Pets The symptoms of exposure to mold may vary somewhat depending on what type of pet you have. For instance, a dog or cat may show somewhat different symptoms than a guinea pig or rabbit. Some common symptoms of mold exposure you may notice include: • • • • • • • • • • • •

Excessive scratching in the absence of fleas Pets may develop sores and/or bleed from excessive scratching Excessive licking Hair loss due to excessive scratching and/or licking Coughing Sneezing Runny nose Runny eyes Labored breathing Wheezing sound when breathing Loss of appetite Lethargy

Talk to your veterinarian for more information about pets and mold exposure symptoms of which you should be aware. You should also be familiar with the typical behavior, eating patterns and energy level of your pet. If you notice changes, contact your vet. Continued Next Page

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Treating Symptoms of Mold Exposure in Pets If your pet shows symptoms of exposure to mold, he needs to see a vet right away. Let your vet know if your pet has been exposed to mold or if you suspect exposure to mold might be causing his symptoms. If you can’t get your pet in to see the vet immediately, we recommend removing him from the home if possible in order to avoid continued exposure to mold prior to seeing the vet. Arrange for him to stay with a friend or family member or in a kennel if you can. Continued exposure to mold could make your pet’s symptoms worse and permanent damage to the respiratory system or even death could result. Your vet will probably prescribe medications to treat your pet’s symptoms. However, your pet’s symptoms will probably not improve and may even continue to get worse as long as he is exposed to mold. Your vet may advise you to keep your pet out of the home until you’re able to get the mold cleaned up. You may be able to board your pet at the vet’s office, or you can ask a friend or family member to keep him temporarily, or you may be able to board him at a kennel. Make sure to ask your vet if it’s safe for him to be around other pets, though; if he’s sick, he may not be able to stay in a kennel or in a home with other pets.

For Help with Mold Removal If you’re concerned about pets and mold exposure, you need to get any household mold cleaned up as soon as possible. We recommend calling in a mold removal professional to make sure the job is done correctly and completed in a timely manner so your pet can safely return home. We also recommend having a certified mold tester inspect your home after the cleanup has been completed, whether you do the job yourself or hire a professional, to make sure all traces of mold have been removed. That way you know for certain it’s safe for your pet to return home. Summer 2018 23

3 SIMPLE TIPS for Teaching Your Dog NOT to Pull on the Leash Chet Womack


o many dogs these days do not have any leash manners. They pull while on the leash, choking themselves, and making the walk miserable! But, there are a few simple tips you can use to teach your dog to NOT pull on the leash, so you both will be able to enjoy your walks. Here Are My Top 3 Tips to Teach Your Dog to NOT Pull on the Leash: 1. Teach Your Dog How Long His Leash Is! First off, this means DON’T USE RETRACTABLE LEASHES!! Retractable leashes are unfair because the dog doesn’t know if the leash is 3 ft, 10 ft or 25 ft. A dog needs to know how long his leash is to learn not to pull. So, find a leash that is about 6 ft long and stick with it for training. I often “let my dogs be dogs” by allowing them to have the length of the leash to wander while we are walking. However, my #1 rule is that you don’t pull me, EVER!!!! And, to achieve this, I must teach my dogs how far they can go on their Continued Next Page

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leash before they pull (about 5 feet). So, I put them on a leash, and if they are not paying attention to me, I change my direction. Yes, the dog hits the end of the leash. But, in my opinion, the dog is “correcting” himself, and I am teaching him how much room he has on his leash before this happens. This also teaches the dog to pay attention to me. Yes, you can sniff and wander and have a good time and still have an idea of where I am and what I am doing. Whenever my dog appears not to be paying attention, I change my direction and make a 180-degree turn. This helps the dog learn how long his leash is, and teaches him to pay attention to me.

3. Stimulate His Mind Dogs often pull because they are bored! He doesn’t have really anything else to do, or anything else to think about, so he pulls you from one thing to another. Give him something else to do! Stimulate his mind!! I rarely walk with a total purpose of getting somewhere fast. When I am walking with my dog, I am walking AND training. I change my direction. I change my pace. I have my dog sit. I have my dog “down.” I ask him to find heel. I bring his tug and play with him when he does something right. I ask for eye contact. I ask my dog to do push-ups (sit and down in succession). I make circles to the right and circles to the left. I want my dog’s mind stimulated. I want my dog to pay attention to me. And, I recognize that just walking at a slow pace is not stimulating for my dog, and, without me providing him with stimulation, he is more likely to pull! Follow these three tips, and your walks will significantly improve! Chet Womack is the founder of

2. Reward Attention Very few people ever recognize when their dog looks at them. Even fewer people reward it! This is one of the biggest mistakes people make! Your dog should be praised for looking at you, and paying attention to you. Paying attention to me is NEVER wrong! I want my dog staring up at me or looking back at me; always checking in with me. If your dog is paying attention to you, he probably isn’t pulling on the leash. When I teach puppy classes, 100% of those puppies will look up at their owner, on their own (even when they haven’t been taught eye contact). It is a given. It is something I wait for during class, so I can point it out and have them reward it. However, if you don’t recognize it and reward it, the behavior will disappear and turn into pulling and paying attention to everything else. Summer 2018 25


3 reasons why your dog may not be following your commands. Paula Bergeron - Grafton, NH “My Dog is so stubborn, he only wants to do what he wants to do! My dog looks right at me when he is doing something wrong,I think he wants to make me mad! My dog won’t listen to me no matter how loud I yell.” I hear accusations like these over and over and they make me smile because without knowing it these owners are absolutely correct. Dogs do want to do what they want to do… don’t we all? So how can we change what they want to do? Dogs often antagonize other dogs teasing them in order to get them up to play and so teasing you is one way for them to get you to play with them, and yelling may very well overexcite your dog to the point that they are actually unable to understand what you are telling them to do. These are all reasons why your dog may not be following your

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directions… however, the problem is not your dog… yup, you guessed it… the problem lies with us. So let’s take an honest look at 3 reasons dogs are unable to follow commands and see if looking at it from a different perspective helps to solve some problems.

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Why Your Dog is Not Following Commands 1. You have not taught your dog the skill. This may seem obvious, however, it is incredibly common that we as humans think that a dog is born understanding the English language so that when we ask them to sit they automatically know to place their butt on the ground. We can also be fooled into thinking that dogs just know what to do because an older dog in the home has, in essence, done our job for us and taught the younger dog what to do by example. However, if your dog is not following through with a command you must ask yourself does he truly understand what I want? Have I shown him and practiced with him that the word sit means to place your butt on the ground? If you want your dog to follow your commands you must first teach them exactly what you want, and then practice, practice, practice, until it becomes a habit, only then will your dog make the connection from the human word to the action that is required. 2. Your dog is not motivated enough to listen to your commands. Let’s face it, sometimes chewing on the toilet paper roll is more fun then having to come when called…. especially if they are having to come to an owner is by now very frustrated. Be aware that your dog wants to please you but sometimes you are going to have to make it well worth their while to leave an activity that is great fun to them. If your interactions with your dog have recently been steeped in frustration your dog is not very likely to obey. Sometimes a sweet pat on the head and a “good dog” will do but other times we need to be the cheerleader in their lives and lavish the praise, or give a luscious treat. Remember they do not understand we are late for work or are tired at the end of the day. If you approach them as an individual who is rooting for them to do the right thing rather then being ready for them to fail, you will go a long way to turning things around, and a treat in our pockets can’t hurt either! 3. Your dog is confused. Most often the reason your dog is confused is that you have been inconsistent. I often see someone ask their dog to do something… over and over and over and over and then…. they give up, or they will accept an approximation of what they wanted because they are in a hurry, or they are embarrassed because the dog isn’t listening. This is a recipe for a very confused dog. Next time you give them the command and they don’t do it right away because frankly they have been taught it isn’t important, you may punish them setting them back even further. Now we have a dog who can not trust your Summer 2018

commands because they do not make sense. If you are not clear, and consistent your dog will be unreliable, it is as simple as that. I realize that we all have very busy lives, so it can be frustrating when you feel as though you are fighting a battle of wills with your dog. However, if you take the time to understand communication from your dog’s point of view, you will begin to see our part in the communication break down. Check in with these three questions when you find yourself frustrated with your dog’s obedience, have I truly taught my dog what to do, do I motive him enough to enjoy following my commands, and am I confusing him by being inconsistent? This line of questioning will give you the assistance you need to fix the problem, and pave the way for a stronger bond, and a lifetime of enjoyment with your canine friend. Happy Training! Paula Bergeron and the gang at Good Dogma embrace a holistic approach to bringing balance to your dog’s behavioral issues. Exercise, training, relaxation, massage, grooming, play, socialization and energy healing are incorporated into your dog’s routine. 27


f your nest is empty — by circumstance or by choice — think about getting a dog. Known for their devotion and happy dances, dogs can take a big bite out of isolation. Just hanging out with a furry friend, studies show, has a revitalizing effect. Here are 10 benefits of later-life dog ownership. Dogs Keep You Fit Adopt a dog and ditch that pricey personal trainer. A study in The Journal of Physical Activity and Health found that dog owners walk approximately one hour longer per day than those without a fetching friend in their lives. They Make You Healthier Studies show that dog-owning seniors have lower blood pressure and lower cholesterol than their petless peers. Having a dog also reduces the risk of heart attack — and boosts your chances of long-term survival if you have one.   Dogs Are Social Mediums A natural-born icebreaker, your dog will introduce you to everyone from next-door neighbors to perfect strangers. It’s impossible to pass a dog without making a “pat stop.” So head for the park — Bowser will take it from there.   They Organize Your Day A dog may keep you sane, showered and solvent. Studies show that dog owners exhibit higher degrees of self-discipline than those without. Makes sense: Dogs, like humans, thrive on structure; they need to be fed, walked and nurtured at regular intervals. Dogs Get You MRI scanners showed that the canine brain reacts to voices and sounds, such as crying or laughter, in the same way the human brain does. Dogs are also the only nonhuman animals who scan the left side of a face — the process whereby people, too, “read” emotions.  They Boost Quality of Life For many older Americans, a dog means the difference between a life lived and a life merely endured. Dogs help you stay safe and independent: They provide ears for the deaf, eyes for the blind and an early warning system at the approach of dangers (both real and imagined, of course!).  They Can Be an Old Friend No need for housebreaking and training when you adopt an older pooch. Studies show you can teach an old dog new tricks — or simply take it for long, calm walks. They Help You Volunteer When is a dog like a grandchild? When you can play with it during the day and then head home! Shelters and rescue organizations are desperate for volunteer help. And you’ll get a boost from that tailwagging mood elevator. Dogs Make You a Better Person Consider this: Ozzy Osbourne, the bat-chomping rocker not known as an SPCA poster child, once wrestled a coyote to the ground to pull his pet Pomeranian, Pipi, from its jaws. As the “bumper snicker” exhorts us, “Be the person your dog thinks you are.” They Let You Be a Hero The Humane Society estimates that 6 to 8 million dogs and cats wind up in animal shelters every year. The majority would make loyal and loving companions, yet at least half of that number are euthanized annually. Visit a local shelter; maybe some buddy needs you. Summer 2018

10 Reasons to Get a Dog When You’re Over 50

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Five Surprising Things You Didn’t Know About Dogs Dr. Marty Becker DVM

and they always attract attention. While pet Poodles are typically kept in a short “puppy clip” and show Poodles are groomed for fluffy, big hair, there are breeds who cannot be shown competitively without their cords: the Puli and the Komondor. In Europe, the Bergamasco is shown not only corded but also matted, with what look like large pieces of felt hanging from his pelt. Cords are impractical for pet dogs, which is why these breeds are often shorn of their distinctive coats when they’re retired from showing. A few years back, a top-winning American Komondor was shaved down, losing 2,700 cords and 15 pounds in the process. Fleas aren’t picky: When dogs have fleas, it’s more likely they’ll be what are called “cat fleas,” or Ctenocephalides felis. As for cats, they’re more likely to have cat fleas, too. There is a “dog flea,” but it’s nowhere near as common. The reason “cat fleas” are named after our feline companions is pure coincidence: They were found on a cat when they were first named, in 1834. And, yes, modern flea control from your veterinarian will control these heinous hitchhikers on both cats and dogs.


hile most of the country will have a hot streak or two this summer, they weren’t officially “dog days” unless they occurred in late July or August, at least in the Northern Hemisphere. That’s because the term “dog days” refers to a period when Sirius - the “dog star,” part of the constellation Canis Major, rises and falls with the sun. The ancient Romans marked these days from July 23-24 to August 23-24, noting that they were typically the hottest days of the year. Eventually, the phrase “dog days” came to mean any hot streak in the summer. The origin of dog tags: Putting collars on dogs is an ancient practice, but dog licenses are much more recent. In the United States, at least, the practice is a little more than a century old, and it started in Cincinnati, Ohio. Charging dog owners to license their pets caught on with other cities as well and was so common that by the time American soldiers in World War I were issued ID tags, they reminded everyone so much of what dogs wore that they were humorously called “dog tags,” a term that sticks to this very day. Guard dog on duty: The phrase “Beware of Dog” is so old that its Latin equivalent, “cave canem” has been found on signs in Roman ruins. The word “watchdog” isn’t quite so old; the first mention of it is by Shakespeare, in The Tempest. First-aid cream is better: The idea that a dog›s saliva has healing powers has been around at least since the ancient Greeks and Romans, whose physicians believed it to be an antidote for poisoning. Later, St. Roch was often pictured with a dog licking a sore, reflecting the belief that the patron saint of plague victims knew something about a cure and that his dog’s saliva made him healthy. Modern medicine, no surprise, doesn’t look kindly on such theories. And by the way: Dogs are attracted to open wounds because the serum from them is sweet. Doggie dreads: If you let the hair of Poodles grow, it will form dreadlocks. While not common, Poodles with “cords” do turn up at dog shows now and then, Summer 2018 29

"Oscar" from C.H. Dana RV Inc. Traveling in style.

RVing with Cats: What You Need to Know Heather Marcoux


he highway is calling your name, but you don’t want to leave your cat behind while you go road tripping in your RV or van. Luckily, if your cat is an adventure cat, you don’t have to be separated. Not all cats are good candidates for life in a home on wheels, but if you’ve got a leash-trained kitty who is accustomed to car rides and confident in a harness, your cat may be the “purrfect” road trip companion. With the right preparation you can make sure your cat enjoys RV travel as much as you do. Spend time in the space The first step to planning an RV adventure with your cat is introducing them to the vehicle. Put your motorhome in park, because it’s best not to leave the driveway until your cat is fully adjusted to and comfortable in their new surroundings. According to veterinarian Dr. Alisha Tran, this process could take anywhere from a few days to weeks or longer depending on the cat. “It would be best to very gradually accustom the cat to the RV, as if it were a new home since it will essentially be [a new home] at least temporarily,” she tells Adventure Cats. “This means giving [your cat] enough time to be comfortable with just being in the RV or van without it even moving.” Make it theirs Dr. Tran suggests bringing some of your kitty’s things into the RV during the adjustment period. Having their usual bedding, toys and scratching post in their new environment will help cats feel safe as they figure out their new surroundings. It will also introduce familiar scents into the vehicle. “The goal is for the cat to feel like Continued Next Page

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the RV is a comfortable zone,” says Dr. Tran, who recommends using Feliway diffusers, sprays and wipes in your cat’s new mobile home. Plan for medical emergencies While your kitty is busy sniffing around your caravan, you can get busy making a plan for any medical needs that may come up during your road trip. A well-stocked feline first aid kit could come in handy and should definitely include any medications your cat might need. A hard copy of your cat’s veterinary and vaccine records are good to have, too. MORE: Essentials for hiking with cats “Have a list of vets or emergency vets you can contact quickly or can navigate straight to in case something does happen,” says Dr. Tran. “Especially if this is going to be a trip where cell phone service is spotty [or] non-existent, or veterinary care is not easily accessible.” Consider the litter There are as many places to put a litter box in an RV as there are RVs on the market. In larger motorhomes, placing the litter box in the bathroom beside the toilet can be a good option, but in smaller RVs with wet bath-style washrooms, this isn’t very practical unless you want to be moving the litter every time you take a shower (although some RVers do just that). Luckily, creative use of space in RVs — and even vans — opens up a ton of litter location possibilities. RV dwellers have put litter boxes under beds, in empty cargo compartments and in cabinets outfitted with cat doors.

Summer 2018

Things can be trickier in a van, where space is even more limited, but litter and van life can mix. One Australian couple reports success securing their cat’s litter box under one of the back seats with Velcro. As for Vladimir — a kitty who’s traveled to all the U.S. national parks — his humans keep his litter box in the shower. Buckle up When your cat is comfortable in the space it’s time to begin your road trip, but a cat should not be left loose in an RV or van when their new home is in motion. “While the vehicle is moving I would recommend that the cat is confined in case of an accident,” notes Dr. Tran, who suggests cats ride in a large crate secured by a seatbelt. Loose cats can not only be injured in the event of an collision, but they can also inadvertently cause one if they are roaming near the driver. When your RV is stopped and you’re ready to explore outdoors, make sure your cat wears his or her harness, collar and leash. A long line secured to the RV or van is perfect for allowing your cat to explore the campsite while you supervise from the fireside, but a collar with ID and a microchip are also necessary just in case your cat does slip outside without her harness on. Enjoy life on the road Traveling with a cat means going slow and taking precautions, but whether you’re hauling an Airstream or living that #vanlife, if there’s room in your heart for a cat, there’s also room in your vehicle. 31

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Pasture Strategies for Horses with Metabolic Disorders Nicole Sicely - Cambridge, VT


anaging a horse with a metabolic disorder is a lifetime dedication. Like a child having a peanut allergy, it will always be something you need to be cautious of. There is no such thing as a safe pasture for horses with metabolic disorders. However, there are strategies to reduce the risk. At risk horses, such as those who are over-weight, have EMS, PPID, or insulin resistant (IR), cannot tolerate free choice grazing due to the excess intake of sugar and starch during certain environmental conditions. Pasture management strategies can reduce the risk of high sugar and starch intake. Know your horse’s risk level and exercise caution. If your horse’s insulin level is not in the normal range (Cornell:10-40 uIU/ml), has a Cresty Neck Score of three or more, or is hoof sore, use a dry lot or tract system. Cresty Neck Score System Score Description 0 No palpable crest. 1

No visual appearance of a crest, but slight filling felt with palpation.


Noticeable appearance of a crest, but fat deposited fairly evenly from poll to withers. Crest easily cupped in one hand and bent from side to side.


Crest enlarged and thickened, so fat is deposited more heavily in middle of the neck than towards poll and withers, giving a mounded appearance. Crest fills cupped hand and begins losing side to side flexibility.


Crest grossly enlarged and thickened, and can no longer be cupped in one hand or easily bent from side to side. Crest may have wrinkles or creases perpendicular to the topline.


Crest is so large it permanently droops to one side. Source: Carter et al., 2009

In Vermont and New Hampshire we have Cool Season Grasses (C3). Cool Season grasses thrive in temperatures between 65-75° F. Growth begins in C3 grasses when the temperature is 40-45°F. Many factors affect the sugar and starch content of forage including: species of forage, light, light duration, temperature, nutrients and water, stage of growth, and grazing management practices. Grass accumulates sugar and starch through photosynthesis. During the day, sugar and starch are produced peaking in the afternoon. Once the sun goes down, respiration begins, the sugars and starches produced from photosynthesis during the day are utilized for continued growth. By early morning the sugar and starch has been used up, leaving the time between 3am and 10am a safer grazing time. When nighttime temperatures drop below 40°F respiration is not active, therefore sugar and starch is not used up for growth. However, it is still accu34 4 Legs & a Tail

mulating during the day, making grass a large holding pot of sugar and starch. This makes spring, fall and early winter a dangerous time to graze. C3 grasses can adapt so well to cold that a low rate of photosynthesis can continue under a light layer of snow. Most susceptible horses should be kept completely off green grass during periods with freezing nights. Even an insulating layer of snow may not be enough to create a safe turnout. Check your pastures in the winter, if the base of the grass is still green, then the sugar and starch will have accumulated at an unsafe rate, don’t turn your horses out.

Photo courtesy of

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C3 grasses store sugar and starch in the stem base. Ever seen a horse nibbling on an over grazed section of the pasture with lovely tall blades of grass being completely ignored? Horses can be selective grazers and prefer the shorter, sweeter blades of grass. C3 grasses have a higher genetic potential to accumulate sugar and starch under stressful conditions. Stress, just like temperature, can cause respiration to shut down before photosynthesis. In these situations, even morning grazing can be dangerous. Examples of stress are drought, over grazing, or lack of soil nutrients. On cloudy days photosynthesis is reduced creating less accumulated sugar and starch. Planting trees around a paddock, or setting one up next to buildings helps provide shade and limit photosynthetic rates. With two cloudy days in a row, it is safer to let your horse out to graze a bit longer on the second day, as very little sugar and starch will have accumulated. Maintaining your pastures in a vegetative (growing) state will also prevent sugar and starch from accumulating. Seed heads are very high in sugar and starch, and pastures should be mowed prior to it going to seed. A recent study found that mowing pasture during seasons when sugar and starch concentrations are the highest; spring and fall, can maintain forage in a “re-growth� phase that consumes stored sugar and starch. In this study pastures were mowed to a height of 5.9� prior to seed heads forming. Additional ways to help your overweight and/or metabolic horses are exercise, muzzles, strip grazing, track systems or dry lots. Exercise is the #1 insulin buster there is. It will help induce weight loss and increase insulin sensitivity. Muzzles can be beneficial in restricting intake by 80%. They restrict intake, and only allow access to the tips of the leaves which are lower in sugar and starch. Turning your horse out during safe grazing times with a muzzle, along with exercise, is a good option for overweight horses. Strip grazing restricts the amount of grass horses have access to by use of a portable fence. Every few days you move the fence to a new section to limit the amount of grass they have access to. Moving the grazing sections limits damage to the previously grazed areas and allows for re-growth. When pasture turn out is not a safe option, as on a sunny afternoon, dry lots are your best friend. They should be completely bare dirt with no short grass. A small overgrazed pasture is not a dry lot. Remember, over grazed grass

Week One

Week Two


Resting Grazing

Grazing Week Two Week One

Week Three Resting

Resting Week Four Grazing


Starting paddock

Single-fence strip grazing, where the fence is moved every week to gradually in crease grazing paddock size. The grazed paddock is not rested.



Dual-fence strip grazing, where two fences are moved at the same time over a 4 week period, allowing previously grazed areas to rest

Strip grazing photo courtesy of Inside-Out Hoofcare.

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is under stress and accumulates sugar and starch in the grass stem closest to the ground. Create a safe dry lot using dirt, manufactured sand, or pea gravel. Take Home Highlights • Introduce all new pastures more gradually with at-risk horses. • Turn out early morning between 3 - 10am.

• Avoid sunny afternoons

• Longer turnout may be possible on cloudy days. • Shaded grass will accumulate less sugar and starch, being a safer grazing location.

• Spring and fall are the most dangerous seasons.

• Don’t turn out when night temperatures drop below 40°F. • Access to grass in the winter is only safe when the grass is completely dead. If it is still green near the base of the stem, then sugar and starch are still present in high quantities.

• Avoid grass that may be stressed due to drought or overgrazing.

• Mowing pastures keeps grass in a state of re-growth so less sugar and starch accumulates. • Seed heads are extremely high in sugar and starch, mow prior to heads forming.

• Use a muzzle to restrict intake during safe turn out times.

• Use a dry lot or track system for periods that are unsafe to graze.

• And the #1 thing you can do for your horse…. Exercise! Nicole’s passion for equine nutrition started in 2002 the day her Tennessee Walker gelding “Chance” was diagnosed with PPID (Cushings Disease). Stumbling across the “Equine Cushings and Insulin Resistance” Yahoo group opened the door to a complete fascination (some would say obsession!) with the benefits of nutrition for PPID and IR horses.  Chance lived to the wonderful age of 31yrs old.  Diagnosed at age 18, Nicole contributes these years to a tightly balanced diet, amazing vet and farrier. *Information in this article may not be copied or reproduced without consent from Custom Equine Nutrition, LLC.

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“Heels Down!” Sue Miller - Sharon, VT


eels down” is all too often heard in riding instruction. The problem is, that the problem most likely doesn’t lie in the heel. Instructors must work with each individual student on their posture to find the seat that is correct for them. The horse’s dynamic motion has a great influence on this process. To learn balance, riders need to be able to move, to discover the correct interaction of muscles that keeps them balanced and relaxed. Only then can they smoothly follow the horse’s rhythm with their pelvis. Instructors must be careful in their corrections because everything they correct has an effect on the rest of the rider’s body. If a rider overcorrects in a particular area the instructor will sooner or later have to correct somewhere else. Riders need to find an appropriate level of toned relaxation in their bodies and minds so that they can help their

Ella Roberts rides Bailey with Ruth Mackinnon leading and Jane Randell sidewalking. Photo by Mary Gerakaris.

horses find that same balance. A horse and rider who are relaxed, yet using necessary muscles are engaged, are ready for any type of riding challenge that may be presented. Instructors need to remember that the corrections they make to a rider’s position have profound effects on the student’s posture, whether they are an able bodied rider or a therapeutic rider. Every rider has muscular imbalances that will cause problems/mistakes in riding. The rider and trainer should be aware of where these come from and what general tendencies each rider has. It is also important to know which muscles and muscle groups are important for addressing these problems. Most of the time the place where the correction is needed is not the place where it is visible. For example, slumped shoulders are more likely to be the result of a problem in the pelvis or neck and not the shoulders themselves. Today’s typical riders are impacted by their work environments and have slumped posture from hovering over a computer or cell phone for long periods of time. Sitting for prolonged periods twists the body by crossing and uncrossing the legs and leaning from side to side in order to remain focused on tasks on little screens. Hunched, tight shoulders and curved spines can also hinder breathing. When a rider comes for a weekly lesson they have not typically worked on a warmup before riding, coming Continued Next Page

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directly from their place of employment or last errand. When someone sits upon the horse and thinks, “I must sit up straight”, they typically exaggerate the motion and turn into stiff well-meaning soldiers with chests thrust out, backs hollow, and ridged arms that start with the shoulders being thrust backwards. Instead of sitting straight and relaxed, they tense up because they do not know how to correctly sit up straight. The wrong muscles are engaged, resulting in more tension and less comfort for the horse and rider. When the pelvis is rolled forward, the chest automatically fills out, the shoulders fall back and, because the neck vertebrae extend, the chin also drops toward the chest, creating naturally balanced straightness. Riders should try to arrive to their riding lesson early and try doing some warm up exercises before climbing on the back of a horse.

Klarey Black is all smiles while riding Mac over a crossrail fence. Photo by Mary Gerakaris.

When you hear a riding instructor yell, “Toes up!” or “Heels down!” the rider’s heel position results from the position of the rest of the body, so it is rarely effective to try to directly correct a heel position. It is far more effective to look elsewhere in the rider’s body for a blockage or stiffness and make a correction there. It is not just “put your heels down” that makes for a strong leg; it is the balance and form of the leg that determines the strength. It is also possible for a rider to have their heels down and not be effective or secure. Often incorrectly applied leg aids, a leg turned incorrectly too far out or in, and tension in the toes & shoulders will affect heel position. Relaxing the tension in other parts of the body will bring about the desired change in a dropped heel with relaxed springing ankle. Sue Miller is a Path Registered Instructor & ESMHL, PATH Vermont State chair and Vice President of VHSA. Summer 2018 39

Chimneys Again Scott Borthwick - Canaan, NH

I n the past I have written about bats flying down chimneys and last issue I wrote about Chimney Swifts actually living in the chimneys. This time I am writing

about all the other critters who tend to make it down the chimney. Many years ago I got an 11:00 pm phone call from a distraught elderly woman. There was some sort of animal running around her house. So off I went to investigate. Turns out, it was a flying squirrel. She had a beautiful fieldstone fireplace in the great room and she enjoyed having a fire in it at night. After going to bed the fire would burn out, and the squirrel made his entrance. I explained to her the importance of closing the damper but she didn’t want to hear it. The late night calls continued 7 more times, and after a hefty bill she decided to live without the fire for a while and keep the damper closed. Raccoons occasionally will make a nest in a chimney but I have only seen that a few times. It is usually a chimney that’s not being used. Primarily we deal with grey squirrels. I got a call about something leaving droppings around the house. My new employee, Bill, discovered it was a grey squirrel after he looked in the chimney only to have it jump out at him. We chased it around the house for a while leaving the sliding glass door open in hopes it would leave on its own. The squirrel was having no part of it. Bill who is a hockey player used some of his skills with a makeshift hockey stick/snow shovel, and got it safely out the door. I have removed many a critter from fireplaces and even woodstoves. A lot of times people don’t even know they have had an animal in the chimney until the clean out door is opened and a carcass is found. However, the most interesting chimney call came from a young lady with a newborn. She was hearing noises in the fireplace and was terrified that it might be a raccoon, fearing that it might get out and harm her child. So off we went. We set things up so that when I opened the damper, we could scoot the raccoon out the door. Much to our surprise after opening the damper, we discovered that it was a Barred Owl. We were able to get it out and release it unharmed. The young mother videoed the release and it is posted on our company’s Facebook page. Remember to get your chimneys capped and keep your dampers closed. It could save a lot of time and money.

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Scott Borthwick owns Estate Wildlife Control. He lives in Canaan, NH with his wife Donna, two dogs, a couple of horses and one tough old chicken named Henrietta. Summer 2018

Summer 2018 41

Not Just Nutrition: Environmental and Social Causes Behind Pet Food Brands A

ccording to the 2017-2018 APPA National Pet Owners Survey, U.S. pet parents spend an average of $307 per year on dog food and $235 on cat food. Recent estimates show that traditional kibble and wet food products still dominate the market; however, natural pet food sales comprise about 25% of the total U.S. pet food market and continue

Holly McClelland

to grow. Some pet owners have shifted their food budgets to natural foods as they’ve become more educated about ingredient quality and nutrition. To further evolve the natural foods segment, several manufacturers have taken their product offerings to the next level by touting the environmental and social causes supported by their brands. Here are some of the tactics that these manufacturers are using to stand out from the crowd and gain brand loyalty: Sustainable Sourcing: Environmentally conscious consumers want full transparency about ingredient sourcing and foods with low environmental footprints. Numerous manufacturers focus on sustainable harvesting and farming practices to protect the land and ocean. Annamaet Petfoods cares for natural resources through its collaborations with the Pet Sustainability Coalition and the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). A few of Annamaet’s dog and cat food lines contain certified sustainable line caught Alaskan Cod to help protect the oceans. Earthborn

Holistic’s Venture line sources Alaska Pollock that is responsibly harvested by a MSC sustainable fishery; it also sources giant squid from coastal pacific waters of Peru and Chile that are wild-caught by established fishing communities in South America. BareItAll Petfoods works to combat the Asian Carp invasion in the Southeast U.S. and protect native fish by harvesting omega and protein-rich Asian Carp for its food and treats. Manufacturers are also committed to sustainable sourcing land practices. Ziwi only sources ingredients from ethical, humane, and sustainably managed local farms that exceed strict New Zealand regulatory standards. Champion Petfoods focuses on regional ingredients that are locally sourced from Kentucky farmlands and grasslands, and delivered to kitchens fresh daily by trustworthy farmers. Open Farm is devoted to ethical and transparent sourcing by allowing pet parents to trace the origins of every single ingredient in their bags of food by simply entering lot codes. Additionally, Open Farm works with farmers that are dedicated to sustainable farming practices and only focus on premium proteins, fruits, and vegetables that are raised naturally. Animal Welfare: Pet food consumers have also become concerned about animal welfare and want to make sure that their pet foods contain proteins from humanely treated animals. Tender & True is partnered with the Global Animal Partnership (GAP) and uses GAP-certified meat as the first ingredient to make sure that animals are raised in an enhanced environment with outdoor access. All its organic chicken and turkey recipes are raised in reducedstress environments to make sure that pets are eating proteins with humanely-raised ingredients. Earth Animal touts its support for pasture raised animals and believes animals need the right amount of pasture space to be happy and healthy. Similarly, Open Farm is committed to animal welfare and believes that animals require vegetarian diets free from animal byproducts, antibiotics, and growth hormones; easy access to food and fresh water; and a stressfree eating environment. To achieve its principles, Open Farm works with farmers that treat animals fairly from birth to slaughter, and partners with an independent, industry-leading farm animal welfare organization that ensures the humane treatment of animals. Continued Next Page

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Social Responsibility: Pet parents who are concerned about sound environmental practices tend to care about social causes as well. Portland Pet Food company focuses on social responsibility by donating 5% of net profits to local non-profit animal shelters and programs so that pet owners know that their purchases are making a difference. Lucy Pet Products’ mission is to reduce pet overpopulation and support animal welfare causes through donations to the Lucy Pet Foundation. Additionally, Lucy Pet Products strives to raise awareness of rescue pets through its brand ambassadors – Surfin’ Jack and Ricky the Rescue Cat – which were both adopted from local shelters and have loyal social media followers. I and Love and You focuses on social responsibility through its digital channels. Website visitors are encouraged to sign up for the company newsletter, which results in the donation of 10 meals to a featured shelter. A “rescue of the month” is also featured on its social media platforms, including Instagram, to promote rescue organizations and encourage pet food customers to adopt. We can anticipate that manufacturers will continue to implement sound environmental practices and develop innovative social initiatives to encourage consumers to stay committed to their brands. These practices are expected to grow the natural pet foods segment as both manufacturers and consumers become even more concerned about ingredient quality and the nutritional integrity of pet food. Holly McClelland leads marketing and is an analyst for Fletcher/CSI, a boutique market research and strategy consulting firm headquartered in Williston, Vermont. Holly monitors industry trends and product developments for several brands in the CPG space, including the pet industry. The pet research is focused on tracking nutrition and ingredient trends, technological innovations, and new product launches for dogs and cats.

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Don’t Get Ticked Off, Get Ticks Off S

Connor Day - West Lebanon, NH

ummer brings to mind bright blue skies, lush green scenery, and plenty of warm, summer days! It’s the time of year where the outdoors beckons, and many of us look forward to adventuring with our four-legged companions. The season is vibrant with so many options to explore, take hikes, or go for cooling swims in our wonderful lakes and rivers. Of course, all summertime adventures begin with a little preparation and if you plan to get out there with your beloved pet, you should be prepared for New England’s biggest pest; ticks. According to the Centers for Disease Control, the tick population has been on the rise in recent years. Therefore, we want to share with you some tips on how to deal with tick prevention and removal, and tick-borne diseases. Tick Prevention for People: Ticks are most prevalent during New England’s warmer months: April thru September. During these months, be extra cautious when you enter heavily wooded areas or tall grass. Ticks tend to hang out on the blades of tall grass and on the end of shrubbery branches. Ticks cannot jump and do not hang out in trees. If you plan on exploring the region’s woods like many of us do during the summer, use tick repellent products. There are chemical based repellents and all natural repellents that are effective at preventing exposure to ticks. The CDC recommends using products with at least 20 percent DEET for exposed skin and .05% Permethrin products for your clothing. After you come back inside it is recommended that you wash any chemical-based repellent off your skin. We recommend that you do a full body check in front of a mirror to find ticks hiding in hard to reach places. The most popular place ticks bite people is in their arm pits, on the back of their legs, and groin. Tick Prevention for Dogs: Dogs are easily susceptible to getting bitten by ticks. Thankfully, there are many different pesticides available for you to apply to your dogs. The CDC recommends using products that either contain Fipronil or Pyrethroids. These chemicals will either help repel ticks or will kill ticks after they have bitten your dog. There are pros and cons to using the different products available for dogs and we recommend speaking to one of us here at WLFS, or to a veterinarian, before making your decision. You should always give your dog a thorough head-to-tail check before letting them back inside. Tick are known to hitchhike on dogs and could be inadvertently brought inside your home. The most popular place for ticks to bite dogs is on their neck and on their belly. Continued Next Page

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Tick Removal: There are a variety of different tick removal products on the market. The CDC recommends using a fine-tipped pair of tweezers for the removal process. It is our understanding that when you use tweezers or heated metals it will shock ticks and causes them to regurgitate back into your bite. We recommend that you use tick keys or tick spoons. These tools will reduce the chances of leaving the tick’s head behind. If the head of the tick does stay behind, don’t worry, it will come out naturally. Make sure to clean your extraction tools with alcohol to sterilize them before you start the extraction process. After removal of the tick make sure to clean your wound with an antiseptic. If the tick has been on you for longer than 24-36 hours contact a physician. This removal process is the same for pets.

For more information, visit the Centers for Disease Control’s website,, come see us in the store, contact us at (603) 298-8600, or visit us online at

Tick Diseases and How Ticks Spread Them: Ticks are known to carry and transmit an assortment of diseases. The diseases ticks can carry are always adapting and evolving. Ticks transmit diseases by secreting pathogens into your bloodstream while feeding on you. The CDC list the Black Legged Tick (Deer Tick) as the most common tick in New England. This tick can carry and transmit a bacterium that is known to cause Lyme disease. Lyme disease symptoms include fever, headache, fatigue, and a rash. If left untreated, Lyme disease can lead to further complications in the joints and nervous system. If you are experiencing any symptoms contact your doctor. According to the CDC, most cases of Lyme can be treated successfully with antibiotics. Dogs can also get diseases when bitten by ticks. It is important to look for signs of unusual behavior after you have found a tick on your dog. There is a chance that they could have Anaplasmosis or Lyme. Contact your veterinarian if you suspect your dog has a tick-borne disease. Of course, this is merely a guide to basic tick prevention and response. For more information we encourage you to contact us and ask questions. We’re always here to help, and we value your safety as well as your pet’s. We hope that you are lucky enough to avoid ticks this summer, but if you do come across these pesky pests, we want to make sure you are educated and prepared for them. As always, you can find all your tick supplies and repellents here at West Lebanon Feed & Supply. Summer 2018 45

Alternatively Speaking:

Are Raw Foods Right For You? O

Dr. Anne Carroll, DVM, CVA

ur family loves food, who doesn’t? Eating is a source of pleasure, and hopefully good health when we do it right. Our family includes our pets of course, so it is really no wonder that we want our furry friends to equally enjoy their food and our pursuit for the ‘perfect’ dog food is driven by that desire to have happy,

healthy pets. As that search leads more people to fresh or raw foods, I thought it would be a good time to revisit the topic of raw feeding. We have addressed the pros and cons of processed food in previous articles, so we will not revisit that debate, but instead just take a look at how to evaluate whether raw feeding may be a good fit for your family pet. Before we start, remember that no matter how potentially valuable any one type of food may be, there are no one-size-fits-all when it comes to nutrition. One dog’s perfect meal is another’s digestive upset, so always check with your veterinarian about how to safely evaluate diet choices and make diet changes. Why do we consider raw feeding, when dry dog and cat food is so convenient, requiring no warming, thawing, prep work or planning – just scoop and serve? In modern times we are recognizing what we have given up for convenience and are looking for fresh ingredients that match what dogs naturally would have eaten, like cartilage and ligament tissues, and organ meats. The appeal of mimicking a ‘natural’ eating experience is not a small trend. The raw food industry was doing $65 million in sales in 2013, as of last year that number had risen to $195 million. While still less than 5% of the overall pet food market, raw food sales are growing three times the rate of the rest of the pet food industry. Some have argued this is all a fad or an unfounded theory, but years later too many dogs are healthier on raw foods and that makes fresh feeding likely to continue to be a major growth area in the pet food market. Continued Next Page

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A growing market means more choices and more ways to add fresh food to our pet’s diet, but that comes with the price of needing to be educated to know how to choose. Some elect to start slowly and simply add fresh ingredients on a small scale to the current diet, and this can be an easy way to try out fresh feeding. Appropriate foods that agree with your pet’s digestion can be added to a balanced base meal plan, and it gives the flexibility to focus on certain nutrients that kibble tends to lack or to address specific needs your pet may have. Options include complete meals of quality local meats to use with a supplement balancing mix, making small batch raw or cooked meals to add to dry food, or just supplement commercial food with choice items to augment health. As long as the additions are mindfully chosen and make up less than a quarter of the diet, this approach can really brighten your dog’s menu with nutritional benefits. For those wanting a larger part of the diet to be fresh food, or even all of it, then making sure it is balanced is much more important. Simply providing a buffet of lovely fresh food does not mean it is magically complete. Humans use multivitamins, fortified foods like Iodine in salt and Vitamin D in milk, so why would we not expect to need some effort to complete our pet’s food? Raw meat alone is not a balanced meal, and too much meat without an appropriate balance of other nutrients can actually be detrimental over time. Balance is even more important for growing puppies and kittens, where too little or too much of certain nutrients, especially calcium, can have a huge impact on their proper development. Another consideration is that it takes a lot of metabolic energy to break down raw food, and that can be too much for some animals, no matter their age. Younger animals may find this more of a challenge given everything their digestive systems and immune systems are facing – intestinal parasites passed on by their mothers, getting all those baby shots, diet change from mother’s milk to solid foods and then new foods as they join a new household. Plus at this age, there is a lot less room for replacing dry food and still keeping nutritional balance. At our practice we usually recommend sticking to commercial and cooked foods for most juveniles until they are older and on solid footing to handle raw foods, but if used homemade diets must meet AAFCO nutritional standards for your pet. Elderly animals may have similar needs for an ‘easier’ diet to digest given the decline of digestive capabilities as they age. Consulting with your vet is Summer 2018

important for any diet plan, but even more so for the young and old. Once you have talked to your vet and tried out some fresh feeding to check that it agrees with your pet, you may be ready to take the plunge and make some larger diet changes. The first decision is whether you will make it yourself or buy commercial. Making it yourself gives you more control over ingredient quality and sources, and can allow you to meet any dietary restrictions your pet may have. It does require a legitimately balanced recipe and do expect to have to use some supplements. It is virtually impossible to provide the variety of tissues, including organs, hair, and glands that animals eat in their prey, not to mention the other nutrients dogs would look for from the stools of plant-eating animals (yes, there is a reason they want to go out and eat poop!). Like all things worthwhile, there is a learning curve and it is not a bad idea to have your veterinarian double check your recipes For those that aren’t up for making petfood themselves, commercial diets are abundant, both frozen and dried. However, this still requires some education since there are many choices and not all raw diets are created equal. There are dried fresh foods that are served soaked to return them to a reconstituted state and frozen raw foods. The same rules apply as for dry or canned foods, ignore the advertising on the front of the packaging and read the ingredient list. Many raw foods and even canned or pouches are meant for ‘supplemental’ feeding which is not a balanced meal and will not meet your pet’s nutritional needs if fed exclusively. The package should be clearly labeled but also look at the ingredient list – is not going to be balanced if it only has 3 or 4 ingredients and no supplementation. The other slightly tricky part in feeding complete commercial raw diets is the idea that raw vegetables are a good source of vitamins and minerals. Raw vegetables, unless diced super small or pureed, often have too much fibrous cellulose that dogs simply can’t break down, and cats can’t utilize. A quick look at your dog’s stool will tell you if all that vitamin A in the carrot is feeding your dog or fertilizing your lawn! Dogs would eat pre-digested plant materials in the viscera of their prey, but it is questionable how much they can extract from raw materials. The more fresh feeding you do, be educated. But don’t be intimidated by needing a little information, talk to your veterinarian about the endless options for fresh feeding because even small amounts can go a long way in providing a benefit. Who knows, your whole family may benefit from a little

experimentation in home cooking, and keep everyone excited for their next healthy meal. Dr. Anne Carroll is the owner of the Chelsea Animal Hospital where she practices both conventional medicine and surgery as well as several alternative modalities including traditional Chinese acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine. Her associate Dr. Betty Jo Black brings classical homeopathy to the practice. For more information on alternative veterinary medicine visit their website at 47

New Puppy Frequently Asked Questions  Elisa Speckert - Norwich, VT


ummer is always an exciting time at River Road Veterinary Clinic, often because we get the opportunity to meet new puppies (and kittens) who have found their new forever home. Getting a new puppy can be an overwhelming experience, especially if a long time has passed since you last had a puppy in the house. To help you overcome these hurdles, we’ve compiled a list of our most frequently asked puppy questions: How Should I Introduce My New Puppy to Our Home? Introducing a new puppy to your household should be done carefully

and under close supervision. Young children should be seated on the floor and the young pup placed on the floor beside them. The environment should be as calm and quiet as possible and your new puppy should be allowed to approach the children at his/her own speed. Treats can often help to speed up the interaction if your puppy is nervous or unsure. Introducing your puppy to the other animals in the home should be done in a similar manner. The environment should be calm and quiet, and the puppy should be placed on the floor with your other pet. If you have more than one animal already at home, separate introductions can be much less intimidating and less likely to result in aggression. As difficult as it may be, try not to be overly protective of your new puppy, as this can facilitate a negative introduction experience. As long as your puppy is not in danger of being hurt it is best to watch from the perimeter as your pets interact. Should I Crate Train My New Puppy? Although many puppy owners feel guilty for putting their new companion in a crate it is important to remember that crate training has some important benefits. As long as your puppy is provided with an adequate amount of exercise and socialization, crate training is a great tool. It provides a safe environment for your new puppy, makes house training easier, keeps your home and belongings from being chewed, provides your pet with a safe place to escape to, and makes boarding in a kennel or staying in a veterinary hospital much easier on your pet should those situations ever arise. How Can I Stop My New Puppy from Biting? It is important to remember that all puppies bite and chew. It is a normal part of development, and does not necessarily indicate aggressive tendencies.* Continued Next Page

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Your job as the owner of a new puppy is to provide him/her with the correct outlet for play biting and teething/chewing. If your new puppy nips or bites you, try correcting him/her with a firm “No” and redirecting the behavior to an appropriate chew toy. If this is not effective, a loud screech or shaking a can of pennies can often startle the puppy into stopping the undesired behavior. Always provide a suitable outlet for play biting by then providing them with a toy. Remember that consistency is vital and many puppies require months of consistent training and correction before they learn what is appropriate. How Often Will My New Puppy Need to Come to the Vet? Most new puppies will need to be seen every 2-4 weeks from the time they are 8 weeks old to the time they are about 16 weeks old. This depends upon the vaccinations that you and your veterinarian decide are appropriate for your dog and what treatments and vaccines he/she may have had prior to their first visit with the veterinarian. Most vet clinics will require that your puppy have an examination each time they are seen, due to the rapid rate of growth your new companion will experience over their first 6 months of life. *If your puppy lunges or bites out of fear or while protecting or “guarding” a favorite toy or food bowl, this can be a more serious problem that should be addressed as soon as possible by an experienced behaviorist. If you have any questions about whether or not your puppy’s level of biting is appropriate, please consult a trainer or veterinarian.

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Overgrooming in Cats O

Catherine MacLean - Grantham, NH

vergrooming in cats is something that a lot of owners discover by accident or it’s found by a veterinarian on a cat’s physical exam much to the owner’s surprise. The most common place overgrooming occurs is on the cat’s stomach near the hind legs, and sometimes on the insides of the hind legs. In cases of overgrooming, the hair shaft is broken and not completely missing. The broken hair shafts can make it look like the hair is missing, but upon closer inspection it looks more like “peach fuzz”. Causes of overgrooming include stress, psychological issues, allergies, fungal or parasitic infection, underlying endocrine disease, or some other underlying medical issue. Overgrooming due to fungal, bacterial, or parasitic infections can be ruled either in or out with testing. Testing may include cultures, cytology, and skin scrapings. These tests can help rule out diseases such as mites, mange, ringworm, or a bacterial infection. If tests are positive, your veterinarian will prescribe treatment and hopefully resolve the issue. Endocrine diseases, such as hyperthyroidism, can be ruled in or out with bloodwork. If an underlying issue is

found, medication may be prescribed. Other underlying diseases may be more difficult to find, but bloodwork can be useful. Treatment would depend issues found. Allergies can be more difficult to diagnose since there could be food and/ or environmental factors involved. Food allergies can be ruled in or out with a prescription food trial. A food trial often involves a novel protein diet or a diet where the ingredients are made so small that the body can’t recognize the source. This is called a hydrolyzed protein diet. Both hydrolyzed and novel protein diets are made under strict conditions where there is no chance for cross contamination with other ingredients. A food trial with these diets usually occur for 12 weeks. During this time the cat can’t be fed any other foods or treats. If the cat gets into something that is not the prescribed diet, the food trial is set back to day one. If the cat’s clinical signs improve on the food trial, then a food allergy is most likely the underlying cause for the hair loss. The cat will have to stay on the special food for life. If no improvement, another cause needs to be investigated. For environmental allergies, allergy testing needs to be done. If the cat has a positive response to any of the environmental allergens, a special serum can be Continued Next Page

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developed for the cat. This is often given as an injection over a set period of time. The serum helps to build the cat’s immune system up towards the allergen in question. Over time the cat should become less sensitive. Stress and psychological issues can also cause overgrooming in cats, and is usually the underlying cause in most cases that I see. Overgrooming can start due to a skin irritation and become a habitual or obsessive-compulsive issue for some cats. Or, a stressor within the household may cause the start of overgrooming. The addition of a new human or pet to the family or some other factor may be making the cat unhappy. Often the root of the issue is not clear. Overgrooming from psychological or stress issues can often be managed with short term or long term anti-anxiety medications. Our clinic cat, Olivia, recently went through a period of overgrooming. Olivia was also the subject matter a couple of years ago regarding inappropriate urination, due to stress. Olivia lost her initial home and was known to urinate inappropriately if I was away from the clinic for more than a few days. I had the audacity to go on maternity leave for three months, though Olivia saw me at least once a week while I was doing book work, this was not good enough for her. I was not around for her to ignore me. That was unacceptable in her eyes. A month into maternity leave, I received an email that Olivia’s hair was “missing” on her belly and the insides of her back legs. Having ruled out other issues, and knowing how sensitive she is about my schedule being different, we started her on anti-anxiety medications. This helped tremendously. Since my return in February, she is off medication and her hair is growing back nicely. It’s important to remember that most overgrooming cases aren’t as straight forward as Olivia’s. Her trigger was my absence. In many cases, the trigger can be unclear. It’s also worth mentioning that owners often don’t see their cats grooming themselves more than normal. When I find overgrooming on exams, usually the owner states that they never see their cat grooming more than normal. Remember, cats can be sneaky, most people are not with their pets 24/7. Overgrooming in most cases is treatable. It may take some detective work to find the underlying reason, but once the cause is known, overgrooming can often be corrected. Dr. MacLean completed her Bachelor of Science from Penn State University, her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Atlantic Veterinary College, and her pet acupuncture certification from Chi Institute. Her areas of special interest include general practice and acupuncture. She opened Sugar River Animal Hospital in 2013, and she has been practicing veterinary medicine since 2010. Dr. MacLean’s family consists of her husband Matt, her daughter Katarina, and their three pets: Jack and Misty, two cats, and Arrow, a dog. Summer 2018 51

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Summer 2018 53

Does my Dog Have Dental Disease? If So, How Can I Recognize it? How Painful is it? OK, Then Lets Fix It! Sandra L Waugh VMD, MS

Does my dog have dental disease? Over 80% of dogs over the age of 3 have some degree of periodontal disease. If your dog is 3 years of age or over and does not receive routine dental care, then it is very likely that your dog does have some degree of periodontal disease. As discussed before in 4 Legs & a Tail, periodontal disease starts with bleeding gums and ends with very loose teeth and infection in the mouth. This infection can spread to other organs in the body. Early periodontal disease can be reversed, but once bone is lost the disease can be halted but not reversed. Too much bone loss and the teeth must be extracted. Periodontal disease is very common in smaller breeds but occurs in all breeds.

13 year old Yorkshire Terrier with severe periodontal disease. The green arrow points to exposure of the root with plaque and pus on the root. This tooth was extracted. Other dental diseases common in dogs are fractured teeth and teeth that have died without fracturing (called non-vital teeth). This occurs most commonly in larger dogs.

7 year old German Shepherd with severe periodontal disease in the upper jaw. These teeth (yellow arrows) are not obviously diseased to the eye. The amount of tartar does not necessarily translate into the severity of the periodontal disease. I have seen periodontal disease in teeth that appeared perfectly clean and have removed large chunks of tartar from teeth that were healthy.

Fractured upper right canine tooth. The hole in this tooth (green arrow) goes into the pulp chamber. Any tooth with a hole like this is dead, rapidly becomes infected and will eventually become painful. This tooth should be extracted or treated with a root canal procedure. It will never become a living tooth again and there is no reason to “watch and wait�.

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Trauma to a tooth can cause bleeding inside the tooth. The dentin inside the tooth absorbs some of the blood and becomes discolored. The color ranges from pink to dark purple, deep yellow or grey. The upper right canine tooth (yellow arrow) and the lower left canine tooth (blue arrow) are both discolored and are dead teeth. They will eventually become infected. Again these teeth should be extracted or treated with a root canal procedure.

How might I recognize dental disease in my dog. You need to get a good look at the teeth! Train your dog to allow you to look at and touch the teeth. Routinely getting a good look at the teeth and gums will then allow you to notice any changes in the mouth. What if I don’t see such dramatic changes in my dog’s mouth? Then what? In addition to using your eyes, use your nose! Periodontal disease creates bad breath of the “rotten egg” or “swamp gas” variety. This smell comes from sulfur compounds emitted by the bacteria that cause periodontal disease. Some people can smell plaque, which has a sour smell, similar to milk that has just gone “off”. Plaque breath is unpleasant, periodontal disease breath makes you want to run away from your pet to get to fresh air. Carefully watch your dog eat and observe any changes such as • Difficulty picking up food • Tipping the head to one side while chewing • Chewing on only one side of the mouth • Dropping food out of the mouth • Preferring soft food over hard or eating only if the hard food has water added • Eating slowly or eating a small amount at a time (when normal behavior was to eat the bowl clean) • Listen for chattering jaws when your dog eats. Other things to look for • Red or bleeding gums • Blood in the water bowl or on a chew toy. • Lumps or bumps in or around your dog’s mouth, especially any swelling present on one side but not the other. • If you are brushing the teeth, be alert for increased resistance to toothbrushing and note what teeth were being brushed if it occurs. • If tartar is much thicker on one side of the mouth than the other, then your dog is chewing on the side with less tartar, which is the less painful side. • Loose teeth • Head shyness (your dog not wanting you to touch their head) • Nasal discharge and sneezing (advanced gum disease in the upper canine teeth can lead to bone loss between the nasal and oral cavity) • Your dog may be reluctant to jump up into the car or especially jump out of the car. As dental disease advances it not only can cause significant pain but also causes a generalized lack of energy and enthusiasm. Dental pain is generally not expressed by whining or whimpering but by a gradual withdrawal from activity and interest. The dog that used to be jumping up and down to go for a walk now has to be encouraged to go outside. This is often attributed to changes with age but it certainly can be caused by dental pain. I compare this to a person with a really bad headache. How much enthusiasm does that person display? How grouchy are they? And what a change once the headache goes away. Summer 2018

All of the photographs in this article were taken at my dental practice within the last 4 months. These conditions are routine in dogs and can be treated to restore the mouth to a healthy state. If you are worried that your dog may have dental disease, make an appointment with your veterinarian. Diagnosing dental disease in dogs requires that dental x-rays be taken, in addition to using a probe and explorer on each tooth. Treating all of the dental disease in the mouth and restoring the mouth to a healthy state can make a dramatic difference in your dog’s life. I have so often been told by clients “My dog is like a puppy again!! I can’t believe what a difference getting the teeth taken care of has made. Now I feel guilty for not doing this sooner.” Don’t wait to feel guilty, get your dog’s teeth examined and treated! Next issue I will address dental disease in cats.

Dr. Waugh is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. She also holds a Masters Degree from Washington State University of Veterinary Medicine and is owner of Windsor Veterinary & Dental Services. 55

An Ode to Pen W

Karen Sturtevant

hen I was a kid living in a small Vermont rural town, I thought going to the sprawling city of South Burlington was a life-changing event. On occasion my mom would take my sister and me to the University Mall. A big outing to be sure! I don’t remember the school clothes we purchased or the lunch ordered at Papa Gino’s, but I do remember hoping I could sit on the floor of The Pet Menagerie and play with the puppies when they were taken out of their cages. As a kid, my thinking capacity went only as far, “Oh, they are so cute. I wish we could have one.” Not a deep thinker at that tender age. I will always cherish the joy of patting those pups and getting their wet kisses. What I didn’t realize was that these fluffy, innocent beings were the product of a puppy mill operation. Their parents were bred strictly for the goal of earning money, big money. As with most bred-for-profit animals, little if any humane care was afforded them. Medical care, nutritious food, shelter, and compassionate attention, in all likelihood, were something their parents never had. Abuse and neglect was. When their money-making abilities were done, they were probably discarded in the dumpster beside yesterday’s trash. If I only knew. From being a wide-eyed little girl to today, a middle-aged (somewhat evolved) woman, that feeling of tenderness towards dogs, and all animals, has not faltered. When not working or sleeping, I’m typically at the Vermont English Bulldog Rescue (VEBR) in Williston volunteering. In my new role I met a Continued ON Page 58

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recently rescued puppy mill survivor renamed Penelope, Penney for short. Penney yanked at my heartstrings, she officially became mine in October 2014. English bulldogs, on a good day, are medical nightmares. On a bad day they will drain the bank and the owner will forgo mortgage payments to give them the care they need. Prone to allergies and respiratory issues, extremely heat sensitive, requiring special nutrition, susceptible to changes in routine and environment, bulldogs are not for the weak of heart or casually committed. I found this to be accurate as Penney and I teamed up for entropion and soft pallet surgery, dentals and extractions, bouts with alopecia, a cornea scratch and more. We shared an air mattress. She would hold our stare after coming inside from ‘doing her business’ if we forgot to give her a cookie for her remarkable achievement. Penney was our ambassador at VEBR fundraisers. She was patient and kind with new rescue arrivals. My commitment to her never waned. I was in love. Her personality: sweet and gentle. Her gait: think Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh. Her attitude was ‘go with the flow’ if she could nap 18 hours each day on her mountain of blankets, chewy bones within reach. Her greeting was her signature, yet subtle, bulldog

butt wiggle, similar to a bowl of jiggly Jell-O. All, with two-legs and four, agreed that she was one special soul. So with weakness in her back legs, we assisted in getting her outside, brought her to our vet and she was diagnosed with arthritis in one hip and one knee – opposite sides. A manageable fix with medications to treat the pain and inflammation. Not too long after, something was very wrong, as she could not manage to support any weight on her hind legs, didn’t want to get up, and making the trek outside was not an option. Off to the emergency vet, Dawna her surrogate mom, and I, went on a Sunday night. We agreed a CT scan was needed. The call came Monday afternoon, a tumor in her spine. Penney had bone cancer. We are challenged with certain bumps along our human lifeline. This was such a time. With Dawna’s council, handholding, and shoulder, we formulated a plan to keep Penney comfortable until we needed to make the impossible decision. We brought Penney (all 70 beautiful pounds of her) upstairs where she could have a view of the snow-covered backyard through the sliding glass door. Dawna made her steak and gave her extra treats. We lined her area with potty pads and plastic. She had her toys within reach and her friend, Peter, visited often. Penney was stoic, proud. My shaky composure was broken while lying face to face with her, weeping and talking, she licked my face, my tears. She knew it was time and it was okay. The world stopped the following Sunday. With heavy hearts we said goodbye. The doctor talked to us with each step. “She’s gone,” time stopped. My breath caught. My energy drained. My Penney was gone. Penney’s early life was fear and uncertainly. Her universe changed when Dawna and I met her. I am humbled by the time we had together. She taught me lessons. Taught me to be a better person, a kinder person. I still hear Penney’s bark during my sleep and wake inclined to run down to her. When my brain catches up with my mind I realize she’s gone. Some people say that when an animal passes, they go over the rainbow bridge. I don’t know about that, but I do know that Penney and I will meet again and when we do, we’ll lie face to face and cry tears of joy instead of sorrow. For information on Vermont English Bulldog Rescue, please visit, and find us on Facebook.

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Gaining Ground on Habitat Loss Watercolor by Julie Longstreth/NoStraightLinesArtVT

Julie Longstreth


n human terms, habitat is home. It is environment. It is the place where a plant or animal lives and grows. It is where we dwell, congregate, and continue the species. People understand the meaning of homelessness. To animals, homelessness means habitat loss. This loss is the result of habitat destruction, degradation, and fragmentation. In pursuit of our own connectivity, we build roads. What brings us together fragments wildlife habitat, including that of the spotted salamander. This species winters upland and spends the spring in wetlands known as vernal pools. And, like clockwork, when the first cold rains wash down, the spotted salamander migrates from its burrow to deposit eggs in a targeted pool. Three months later, young survivors clamber out, only to return the following spring to the same pool. Unfortunately, many of these sites are segmented, creating “salamander crossings.� Green Mountain Animal Defenders encourages everyone to do their part to protect known wildlife corridors. Most animals require resources from a variety of places to thrive, such as uplands, wetlands, and grasslands. A successful linkage for amphibians like the spotted salamander can be seen at a known salamander crossContinued Next Page

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ing along the Monkton/Vergennes road in Vermont. This heavily trafficked byway fragments upland from wetland. Before construction of the “amphibian underpass,” an assessment measured species loss due to vehicular traffic at a rate of 50 percent. Once completed, species that were observed to increase in number included yellow spotted salamander, blue spotted salamander, four-toed salamander, eastern newt, wood frog, and spring peepers. Bats are another Vermont species affected by habitat loss. Six million bats across North America and Canada have succumbed to a fungal disease known as white-nose syndrome (WNS), initially identified in a cave in New York in 2006. The cold-loving fungus engulfs the muzzle of hibernating bats in caves and mines. It also damages the skin and wing tissues of these wintering mammals. This motivated Green Mountain Animal Defenders to add a bat-box-building campaign to our evergrowing list of projects. Be mindful of the following list to help preserve bat habitats: • Install bat boxes to encourage nesting • Do not cut down trees unless absolutely necessary • Eliminate excess outdoor lighting • Reduce the likelihood of transmission by avoiding bats’ wintering sites Vermont pollinators (flies, butterflies, and bees) also are in dire need of attention. Pollinators assist in producing 70 percent of crops grown in Vermont. Pesticide use, parasites, and habitat destruction have caused pollinator density and diversity loss. As if that were not devastating enough, neonicotinoids (agricultural insecticides resembling nicotine) render whole plants toxic, affect organisms other than pollinators, and eventually contaminate soil and water. How You Can Make a Difference • Create hedges to provide shelter • Leave dead trees standing as a habitat for butterflies • Install nesting boxes • Place bird baths on your property • Plant wildflowers and vintage varieties • Do not purchase plants that have been treated with neonicotinoids We can gain ground on habitat loss every day by composting, but proper composting is a must. Remember to contain and cover your compost, as the process of food decomposition creates a neurotoxin called tremogenic mycotoxin. It can be deadly to wildlife or pets who ingest it, and early diagnosis and treatment is critical. Some pets recover within 24 to 48 hours, while others do not. So be sure to keep wildlife and pets safe and away from compost. People can decimate, reduce, and fragment, but we can also choose to take action Summer 2018

and reclaim what once was destroyed, one amphibian underpass, batbox, and garden at a time. More Ways to Help Wildlife Green Mountain Animal Defenders encourages the use of effective and humane approaches for solving problems with wildlife who may be getting into your home or garden. A list of humane solutions can be found here: To help a wild animal who you think may be orphaned or injured, call a licensed wildlife rehabilitator for advice. Here is a list of Vermont’s rehabbers: VTWildlifeRehab. SAVE THE DATE! We are excited to announce our 8th Annual Walk for All Animals at noon on Saturday, September 29, in Burlington, Vermont. We invite you to join us, so please mark your calendar now! For details or to ask questions, please e-mail GREEN MOUNTAIN ANIMAL DEFENDERS has been working to protect the well-being of all animals since 1983. Please check us out at and QUESTIONS? Contact us at or 802-861-3030. 61


adie came to live with me in late February of 2017, just a few days before her fourteenth birthday. We didn’t much like each other at first. A mediumsized brindle Border Collie mix, I had known Sadie since she’d been adopted by a friend ten years prior. She would bark at me each time I paid her family a visit, even though I typically arrived with a treat in my pocket. Once the treat had been dispensed, Sadie showed little interest in me. A rescue from Puerto Rico in 2003, where life for strays is basically survival mode, Sadie was fortunate that some compassionate dog-lover brought her to Second Chance Animal Rescue. Sadie was transported to the mainland, placed with a family in New Hampshire then adopted by my friend in 2007. Unfortunately, this old friend had lost

his job and had to relocate. Sadly, he was unable to bring his beloved Sadie with him and asked if I would take her in. I had just lost my thirteen-year-old Golden Retriever mix, and was still grieving her loss. At fourteen, how many months would Sadie have left, would I be willing to expose myself to agonizing loss again? But deep down I knew I would agree to provide a comfortable place for Sadie’s remaining days. I would not get attached to this scruffy brown dog that I didn’t even really like, just doing a favor. I knew better. How was I to stay detached? Ultimately, I went in with my eyes open. With known kidney issues on kidney-friendly food, medicines and treats, so she would be an expensive pet. No matter. She needed a place to live, and I had an opening! Sadie had lost most of her hearing, and many of her teeth. She responded to loud handclaps and whistles, little else. At first Sadie, made herself at home next to the kitchen table where she could keep an eye on the door for when her owner returned. Within a week she gave up and would visit me while I watched TV. I moved a dog bed next to my chair so she could join me. Sadie would balk when I tried to pat her on the head or ears, but allow a scratch behind the shoulders, or stroking her back for a minute, her head was off-limits. Not overly-affectionate, the next several weeks Sadie gradually became more comfortable, and would allow a pat on her head or stroke of her ears, just not for too long, more than she liked, she would move back to the kitchen. Let sleeping old dogs lie! One day, I grabbed an old blanket, threw it over the couch cushions, and gave Sadie the signal. I didn’t need to tell her twice, she claimed the couch as her preferred spot from that day forward. I took to calling her Sades, Sadie Mae, and Sadie O’Grady were also bestowed, and at times, affectionately Knucklehead. Additionally, because of a stubborn streak, she earned herself Sadie Mae or May Not... Sadie Mae or May Not sit... Sadie Mae or May Not stay... Sadie Mae or May Not want to go out. Continued Next Page

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Let the dog out. Let the dog in. Feed the dog. Refill the water dish. You know the routine! Sades eventually learned to trust me. She would stand with some concern while I examined her ears or teeth or paws, she learned that my exams were not meant to be too invasive. I began to trust she would not nip or snap at me. We were developing a bond, and I found myself growing fond of this scruffy old mongrel! Sadie was my first adopted elderdog, first deaf dog, and my smallest dog. She made me sad at first, she was not Brittany, the Golden mix I had lost months before. Brit was affectionate, would lie for hours if someone was petting her, and had a playful manner, which made me laugh at least once a day. Sadie, had never learned to play. She would not chase ball nor stick. I imagined her in Puerto Rico, learning to scavenge for food, no time to play, time only to survive one more day. Having a nearly deaf dog brought some unintended amusement. Each night I would ascend the staircase to change my work clothes, Sades would trudge across the kitchen, the dining room, the living room, up the less-steep and carpeted front stairs, and down the hallway to find me. By the time she made it I was usually back downstairs. Because she was unable to hear me when I rumbled my way back downstairs, she would run back and forth down the hall, searching for me. At least she got a bit of exercise! Over the months, Sadie grew more and more feeble and unsteady, but her intrepid spirit never wavered. When she fell, she would struggle back up (sometimes with assistance) and keep plugging away. Her pluckiness was inspirational, I came to admire her persistence. In the end, we enjoyed nine delightful months together until just before Christmas. In adopting a scruffy little old deaf dog who never learned what toys were for, Sadie initiated me into the challenges and rewards of caring for an elder dog. She taught me that the heartbreak of loss can be balanced by the joys of opening ones’ heart, even for a short time. Sadie came to like me, I know she trusted me, we grew close and bonded, I am not sure that she loved me. I did come to love Sadie. She did that. Sadie brought out the best in me, and I am grateful to her for that. Little Sadie left bushy paw prints all over my heart. David Merrill is a writer, musician, and reclusive visionary from East Corinth, Vermont. When not strumming an instrument, you may find Dave biking the backroads or paddling the rivers and lakes around the UV. Dave prefers amps that go to eleven. Summer 2018 63

Dogs of the


Three Who Survived Kate Kelly


he fact that there were dogs traveling on the Titanic with their owners would come as no surprise to anyone who considers it. However, with all that has been written about the 1912 sinking of the Titanic, little has been written about the dogs who were passengers. Dedicated research by J. Joseph Edgette, Ph.D., Widener University professor emeritus, has revealed the story of the canine passengers. Dogs of First Class Passengers Only Only first class passengers were permitted to travel with their animals.  Most of the dogs were kept in kennels on the F deck and were fed and exercised by members of the crew. Truly devoted dog owners certainly visited the animals regularly; Miss Ann Elizabeth Isham was known to regularly visit her Great Dane. A few of the dogs were small, and they were kept in the cabins with their owners, perhaps surreptitiously.  The dogs who survived were ones kept with their owners, though the attempt was made to save others. While a count of the dogs on board the ship cannot be verified, Professor Edgette has found documentation of several of them: The dogs on board included a King Charles spaniel, two Airedales; a chow; a Great Dane; a champion French bulldog, newly purchased in England; a Pekingese, and a “toy dog” owned by Helen Bishop, a 19-year-old bride. Another passenger, Charles Moore of Washington, D.C. had intended to bring on board 100 English foxhounds that he planned to use to inspire Americans to enjoy English-style fox hunts.  He had to make other arrangements for those dogs, which proved life-saving. Other Animals On Board In addition to dogs, there were also Continued Next Page

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birds on board. Ella Homes White of New York had with some poultry—a rooster and several hens—that she was importing them from France in order to mix in with her stock.  Another woman had 30 cockerels that were coming to the United States with her. There may also have been some canaries, a popular pet of the day. Ships generally had cats to keep down the mouse and rat population. One cat had given birth to a new litter of kittens just before the Titanic docked at Southampton. For some reason, the cat and her kittens were left in Southampton.  While one would assume there were other cats on board, there is no known mention of them. The Night of the Sinking Because the Titanic was considered “unsinkable,” movement toward life boats was slower than it might have been.  In addition, a lifeboat drill, scheduled for April 14—the day before the sinking—was cancelled for some reason. When the ship began listing decidedly to one side and the staff finally began getting out the lifeboats, chaos reigned. Someone went down to the F deck and opened the kennels so while it proved impossible to save these animals, the last sight of the dogs reportedly was of them running along the upper deck. The dogs who were saved were all ones who were kept with their owners.  Margaret Hays’s Pomeranian boarded a lifeboat in Hays’s arms and both were saved; Elizabeth Rothschild refused to board Lifeboat 6 without her dog (also a Pomeranian) and they, too, survived.  Henry Harper (scion of Harper & Row Publishers) and his wife Myra were rescued. Myra was carrying their Pekingese in her arms and so Sun Yat Sen was saved.

great sadness she left him there when they went to board a lifeboat. At a Senate inquiry she said: “there would be little sympathy for a woman carrying a dog in her arms when there were lives of women and children to be saved.” Miss Ann Elizabeth Isham, 50, who had regularly visited her Great Dane was said to have boarded a lifeboat with her dog, but she was told the dog was going to have to be removed. She left the lifeboat with him. It is said that her body and the dog’s body were found later by a rescue boat. Insurance claims were placed on several animals: the prize bulldog, the chow, the King Charles spaniel, and one of the Airedales as well as the lost poultry. A story circulates about a dog helping to rescue passengers. That story is said to have been fabricated by a crew member who sold the story to a New York newspaper and then subsequently disappeared. All in all, the Titanic was a tragedy for all involved. This article first appeared on the website,  America Comes Alive publishes more stories about American dogs and other animals. Visit the website and sign up for “American Dogs” to receive the stories in your In Box. Or email Kate Kelly at

Other Dogs and People Weren’t So Fortunate Of the 2224 people on board the Titanic, 1500 of them lost their lives. There were not enough lifeboats, and some lifeboats were not fully filled before they pushed off, adding to the tragedy. A few other dog-related stories are worth mentioning.  Helen Bishop’s toy dog had been kept with her in her cabin, but with Summer 2018 65

An Improbable Friendship Between a Dog and a Duck Is the Good News Story We All Need Right Now Chelsea Adelaine Hassler


ick and tired of only hearing about the bad things going on in the world? We’re right there with you — and, thankfully, we’ve got the cure for exactly what ails you. Meet the unlikely pair of Max, a 12-year-old Husky, and Quackers, a 4-year-old duck. Against all odds, the two animals — both owned by Patrick and Kirsten Riley — are inseparable best friends, and they’re the pride and joy of the teenytiny town of Strout, MN. The town boasts a population of just 25 people, so Max and Quackers are well-known to all the residents and can frequently be seen out patrolling their domain. “Sometimes on my way home, I actually hope they’re out there because they’re just too precious to look at,” Strout resident Alisa Godejahn told CBS affiliate WCCO-TV. In the interview below, the Rileys describe how they adopted Max when he was 5 and he became fast pals with the couple’s other dog, Sasha, and after she died, he was left without a friend. “He was without any friends, and Max would sit next to Quackers’ pen all the time, I think they just bonded that way,” Patrick Riley says, adding, “after we let him out, they just never left each other’s side.” Kirsten Riley goes on to say, “they sleep together, they eat together, they drink together, they go for walks together down the road . . . everything is together.” The improbable friendship between a dog and a duck provides a poignant reminder that kindness and compassion transcends all of that which may traditionally divide us. It’s not impossible to buck tradition and create a bond with someone who may not be exactly the same as you. As such, the pair is often used as a symbol of how to “put aside differences” among the residents of the town in which they reside. Symbolism aside, it’s hard not to have your heart melt at the sight of these delightful animals trotting along in unison. And you can bet that we’ll be bookmarking this video of Max and Quackers and be watching it all year long, because it’s exactly the kind of thing that we need a little more of in our lives right now. Best-Friends-Max-Dog-Quackers-DuckMinnesota-44244906 66 4 Legs & a Tail

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Dog Days of Summer 2018 Central NH & VT

Is Your Dog a Good Citizen? Hit The Open Road with Your Cat

Alternative Pet Diets Tick Prevention! The Dogs of the Titanic

4 Legs & a Tail Lebanon Summer 2018  
4 Legs & a Tail Lebanon Summer 2018