Dog Days of Summer 2016 Central NH & VT
Create A Tick-Safe Zone A True Tale From Giantâ€™s Ace Madison Bumgarner Why Would Hollywood Hunk Bradley Cooper Scoop? The Story Behind Elsie The Cow Who Let The Cat Out Of The Bag?
Inside this issue of 4 Legs & a Tail
3. 4. 6.
Green Mountain Dog Club
This summer four days of dog shows come to Tunbridge, VT
Oscar’s Memorial Dog Park is Coming to Newbury, VT Of DINKS and DROODS, Justine O’Keefe The tale of a retired couple and their One Old Dog
8. Create a Tick-Safe Zone
They’re Back! Tips to protect you and your pets
9. Summer Fun Without Pesky Fleas 12. Pet Allergies: A Problem We’re Itching to Solve, Michael Tanneberger, DVM 14. Summer is Here... And so are Mold Spores, Vickie Howell
What will you and your pets do if mold invades your home?
16. How To Rescue an Animal, Part 1, John Peaveler
A step-by-step guide for the good Samaritan
18. Bringing Baby Home, Nicole Birkholzer
How to acclimate your new pet to their new world
20. Alternatively Speaking: Homeopathy - Little Doses with Big Effects, Anne Carroll, DVM - As Rufus discovered, not every ailment requires a pill 22. Animals in Service, Cory Batch, DVM
They weren’t called veterans, but these animals made a difference
23. Amazing Grace, Michelle Barry
When horses are neglected, Mountainview Animal Sanctuary is there to help
25. Heat Stroke in Dogs, Elisa Speckert
What is heat stroke and how is it treated?
26. Letting the Cat Out of the Bag: The Wonderful World of Animal Idioms, Mark Carlson 29. Dog Grooming Basics, Jasmine Breiner
Experts agree that dogs should be groomed every 6-8 weeks and here’s why...
30. Lights, Camera, HORSES!
A look at horses on the silver screen
32. Are You Helmet Tough?, Jessica Stewart Riley
Why more western riders are making this smart choice
Pg. 32 Summer 2016
Inside this issue of 4 Legs & a Tail
34. Choosing the Right Daycare
What to look for when you’re considering a kennel
36. Elsie, The Borden Milk Cow, Kate Kelly
The history of one of the most iconic faces in America
39. Strolling of the Heifers
Mark your calendar for one of the nation’s most popular events right in your own backyard
40. The Gentleman Farmer, Tim Goodwin
A glimpse into the life of part-time farmers
42. Kidney Disease in Cats, Catherine MacLean, DVM Renal disease affects 1 in 3 geriatric cats. Spot the signs sooner rather than later Pg. 42 45. Sled Dogs, Summers, and “The Unchained Gang”, Tanya Sousa
Ever wonder what mushers do during the dog days of summer?
47. Homeward Bound
How do those cats travel hundreds of miles back home?
48. Preparing Your Home for Sale with Pets
What pet owners need to know before the FOR SALE sign is posted
50. Gardening For Birds, Catherine Greenleaf
The right plants to keep the birds coming back for more
52. Bats Do Matter, Scott Borthwick
How to “bat-proof” your home this summer
53. Crates: Not Just For House Breaking Anymore, Paula Bergeron
A look at the long-term benefits of crating and a few guidelines
55. A Rabbit With More Than Just a Lucky Foot
Baseball legend Vin Scully shares an unbelievable but true tale from future hall of famer Madison Bumgarner
56. Sometimes Teeth End Up in the Wrong Place, Sandra Waugh, VMD, MS When was the last time your dog asked to see the dentist? If only they could talk 59. Translating the Song Dog, Jaymi Heimbuch
What coyotes are saying when they howl
4 Legs & a Tail Volume L.216 P.O. Box 841 Lebanon, NH 03766 603-727-9214 TimH.4LT@gmail.com
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Pg. 53 Publishers: Tim Goodwin, Tim Hoehn Senior Editor: Scott Palzer Graphic Design: Monica Reinfeld, Lacey Dardis Sales: Karyn Swett, Scott Palzer, Barry deSousa
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.
GREEN MOUNTAIN DOG CLUB
or www.greenmountaindogclub.org Caulder Ripley of Duxbury is the president of GMDC. Caulder has had experience breeding and showing Siberian Huskies. Caulder also holds regular Handling classes to prepare owners and their dogs for the art of showing. Dave Jones of Waitsfield is the chairman for our show on July 16th & 17th. Dave has bred and shown Australian Shepherds and Golden Retrievers as well as teaching Obedience Classes for GMDC. The Club has approximately 25 members located throughout the Central Vermont area. Four Days of Dog Shows July 14th – 17th Tunbridge Fairgrounds 8:00 am – 6:00 pm!
his year, the Green Mountain Dog Club will hold its 70th & 71st Annual Dog Show on Saturday and Sunday, July 16th & 17th at the Tunbridge Fairgrounds. The Woodstock Dog Club will be holding its annual show at the same location on Thursday and Friday, the 14th and 15th. Farmer Elisha Lougee held the first Tunbridge World’s Fair in 1867 as a way to determine who owned the fastest horse or the best-looking cow. In keeping with determining the “best,” we will have Best in Show all four days. Woodstock Dog Club and Green Mountain Dog Club are honored to hold our VERMONT SCENIC CIRCUIT - Four Days of Dog Shows at the Tunbridge Fairgrounds. We expect approximately 1,000 entries and over 100 breeds. With Exhibitors coming from over 35 states and Canada, a long weekend of Dog Shows can bring in over $450,000 to the area. There will be Conformation Classes with Best in Show, Companion Events, Obedience & Rally for both purebred and mixed breed dogs all four days. There will be Best Puppy & Best Veteran. Dog Show Tours, an Ice Cream Social on Thursday and Friday and a BBQ and Live Music on Saturday. Call Mary at 479-9843 or see us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ greenmountaindogclub or go to www. greenmountaindogclub.org for more information. The Green Mountain Dog Club is a non-profit organization serving the Central Vermont area. In addition to hosting the annual Dog Show, GMDC holds many activities to promote responsible dog ownership. Some of the other events that are sponsored by the Club are: Sanctioned AKC Matches; Obedience and Handling Classes; and educational programs. Many of our members and their canine partners show as well as do agility, rally, and hunt. We have a few Therapy dogs as well. Membership meetings are held the 4th Thursday of every month and guests are always welcome. For more information on the GMDC, the show in July, or other events, please visit www. facebook.com/greenmountaindogclub Summer 2016
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Oscar’s Memorial Dog Park is Coming to Newbury, Vermont N
ewbury, and the surrounding communities, are finally going to have their very own two-pen dog park. There is no other dog park within 30 miles of Newbury, Vermont, and Oscar’s Memorial Dog Park will serve approximately 25 communities. In December 2012, after the passing of Dr. Amy Cook’s lab Oscar, she nurtured the idea of having a dog park built as a memorial to Oscar. After considerable deliberation about the dog Continued Next PAGE
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park, Dr. Cook elected to incorporate, and received incorporation status on December 17, 2012. Oscarâ€™s Memorial Dog Park, Inc., then filed for non-profit status and received exemption status during October 2014. The dog park will be approximately one acre behind the Newbury Veterinary Clinic. The non-profit organization is governed and managed by a diverse volunteer Board of Directors.
Oscar's Memorial Dog Park, Inc. is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization
The mission of the non-profit organization is to:
1) Create a fenced-in, off-leash dog park where well behaved canine citizens can exercise in a clean, safe environment without endangering or annoying people, property, or wildlife. 2) To develop a beautiful and well-maintained space open to dog lovers and friends who are willing to uphold park rules and regulations. 3) To view the park as a community project within the Town of Newbury, Vermont and surrounding communities to satisfy the needs of the dog owners and non-dog owners alike. 4) To promote education, training, and recreational activities that facilitate responsible dog ownership and well behaved dogs through the use of volunteers and with the support of community. 5)
To foster fellowship among people who are passionate about dogs!
For more information on how you can help, visit www.OscarsDogPark.net Summer 2016
S K N I D Of and S D O O R D
Justine O’Keefe - East Montpelier, VT
One old dog with support hose.
ack in the 1980’s we were DINKS, a married couple with a double income and no kids. As retirees, we no longer qualify for DINK status. A more appropriate acronym might be DROODS--double retirees, one old dog. We dote on One Old Dog, a muchloved arthritic Golden Retriever with bum knees, allergies, and enough hair to make a toupee for every bald guy in town. As a pup, One Old Dog blew out the ACL’s on both knees. Two surgeries and four thousand dollars later, we had a dog with functioning knees and a severe case of PTSD. Routine trips to the vet caused his blood pressure to skyrocket and the whites of his eyes to turn red. Mild manContinued Next PAGE
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nered at home, at the vet he screamed and thrashed, knocked hypodermic needles across the room, and shed a blizzard of hair. Life for OOD took a further downturn when we replaced the worn carpet in our basement with a hardwood floor. As soon as One Old Dog stepped onto its gleaming surface, he did a belly flop, all four legs splayed out, two east, two west. Using a variety of runners and mats, we created a path on which he could safely traverse the floor's slick surface, but OOD remained uneasy and dispirited. In the weeks that followed, One Old Dog sank deeper and deeper into decrepitude. He slept most of the time, couldn’t get up without help, and fell whenever he ventured onto the kitchen tile. His toys languished in their box and we, his devoted DROODS, prepared ourselves for his imminent demise. Before that sad event transpired, however, One Old Dog’s guardian angel appeared in the form of Angela the House Call Vet. She arrived one afternoon wearing doggie printed scrubs and toting an iPad. OOD, always pleased to have company, livened up enough to show her his latest stuffed animal and to coat her black jeans with a generous amount of hair. There followed a thorough examination and discussion of his various fat deposits, warts, runny eyes, greasy back, and regrettable teeth. She referred delicately to his weight and gave him a rabies shot. I told Angela that we were unwilling to subject OOD to the stressors of invasive procedures. Our goal was to make him feel safe and comfortable, not to prolong his life for our own benefit. Angela suggested several ways to ease his arthritis and improve joint function. That evening on line, I purchased fish oil, chondroitin chews, and seborrhea mousse for his allergies. Days later I received an email from our Angel Vet with a link to a company that sells non-slip doggie socks. Two tiny black socks arrived a week later. They furnish traction on the slippery floors, but are tricky to work onto OOD's pointy back feet and need to be removed each time he heads outside. No strangers to high maintenance, we DROODS perform the on-and-off several times a day. In addition to his morning dose of arthritis medicine, One Old Dog now receives two scoops of fish oil in his kibbles and cooked vegetables. We use the chondroitin chews for treats during the daily walks that keep him ambulatory. Once a week I groom OOD, working the rake through his thick undercoat and inhaling dangerously high doses of dog dander. I clean his ears, wipe his drippy eyes and rub seborrhea mousse into his freshly brushed coat. At the end of the session, OOD’s fur is fluffed and gleaming, his face clean and his eyes bright in anticipation of his post-grooming treat. Summer 2016
Having implemented the suggestions of the Angel Vet, we DROODS have seen a marked improvement in One Old Dog’s health. He gets off the floor without falling and appears to be in less pain. He looks better, too, if one ignores his fat deposits and bad teeth. The on-going expenses incurred by OOD’s new health regimen are considerable, but they are small price to pay to keep our boy healthy and happy. And, as former DINKS, we can afford it. Justine is a writer and retired teacher in Vermont. She is a life-long dog lover and has lived with Golden Retrievers for the past forty years.
CREATE A TICK-SAFE ZONE A
fter yet another mild New England winter, pet owners are now faced with the never ending battle against ticks. Local veterinarians have seen historic numbers of cases due to current conditions and flea and tick products are flying off the shelves of pet stores and feed and supply companies. According to the Vermont Department of Health, there are 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 under bird feeders clean. • Stack wood neatly and in dry areas. • Keep playground equipment, decks and patios away from yard edges and trees.
Landscape Plan For Tick Prevention
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.
Tools For Tick Control
• • 8 4 Legs & a Tail
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. Summer 2016
Summer Fun Without Pesky Fleas W arm weather means fun in the sun, but it also means that we will
soon see a growing population of fleas. Although pets can get fleas any time of the year, spring and summer are often the worst times of year for these bloodsucking parasites. Besides making your pet miserable and itchy, fleas carry diseases such as plague, tularemia, and feline infectious anemia. In addition, certain tapeworm species are carried by fleas. They can also cause lifethreatening anemia in young and debilitated animals. Many dogs and cats are severely allergic to fleas, too. Preventing a flea problem is much kinder to your pet, easier to do, and less expensive than treating an outbreak. Fleas on your pet can be prevented and killed by using a topical medication or pill. Even indoor cats and dogs should receive a monthly preventative, as fleas can hitchhike on you or a visitor and you can track the eggs in from outside. Your veterinarian can recommend a flea product for your pet. It is important
to talk to your veterinarian before using any over the counter flea products. Many older products are hazardous to people and pets. Cats are especially sensitive to many over the counter topical products. Flea collars are hazardous to cats as studies have shown that cats that wear flea collars are more likely to develop cancer in their mouths from ingestion of the chemicals when they groom themselves. Continued PAGE 11
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How do you know if your pet already has fleas? You may not see them at all, especially if your pet is extremely allergic (they lick and chew them off) or if there aren’t many fleas present (yet). Look for black sand like material on your pet’s skin, especially found from the rib cage back. Comb a bit of it out, put it on a paper towel and place a drop of water on it. If it turns red, that is “flea dirt”- the digested blood the fleas have sucked from your pet and you‘ve got a flea problem. It’s critical to understand the flea life cycle in order to eradicate them. Once adult fleas jump onto our pets, they begin reproducing within 24 hours. A single flea can produce 2,000 eggs in her lifetime. These eggs hatch in as little as 5 days and the ones that don’t hatch immediately can stay dormant for up to 5 months. This is pertinent because only 5% of the fleas in the environment are on your pet! These are the adults you can see-- the remaining 95% are microscopic eggs and larvae that are in the carpet, bedding, hardwood floors, and organic litter in the yard. This means that if you only treat your pet for one month, you are not addressing the much bigger problem of all of those immature fleas in the environment. Fleas can be treated with a topical product or pill. Your veterinarian, who knows your pet, will help you decide which product is best. These products must be used for a minimum of 3-6 months (most veterinarians recommend year-round protection) to break the life cycle and prevent new infestations. Use flea area treatments that contain insect growth regulators as a means of destroying the eggs and larvae in your home. Also vacuum well and wash bedding frequently. Remember, you must treat ALL pets in the household, monthly, as well as the environment or you will not solve the flea problem. The Vermont Veterinary Medical Association (VVMA), founded in 1898, is a professional organization of 343 veterinarians dedicated to compassionate animal care and quality medicine. For more information, visit www.vtvets.org or call (802) 878-6888.
PET ALLERGIES A Problem We’re Itching to Solve Michael Tanneberger D.V.M.
s any veterinarian will tell you, itchy skin in pets is one of the most common problems we see in practice. While skin disease has many causes, allergies are near or at the top of the list. Notice that I’m talking about itchy skin – not the sneezing, runny nose, watery eyes that we people tend to get. In our pets, it’s mostly about the skin. There are three main categories of allergies: the most common is called “atopy” which is a hypersensitivity to inhaled or absorbed environmental antigens such as pollens, molds, house mites, etc. Next, food allergy can cause itching as well as gastrointestinal signs such as loose stools or vomiting. The third is contact allergy. This is when the skin reacts to having been in contact with the offending substance (wool for example if the pet has been laying on a wool blanket). Contact allergy is actually very rare compared to atopy and food allergy and it is low on the list of worries. The bad news about allergies at this point in time is that they still can’t be cured. However, the good news is that there are numerous supplements, shampoos, medications and foods all designed to treat the symptoms and improve comfort. Symptoms include itching, redness, hair loss, infections, hyperpigmentation (blackening of the skin), and tend to affect certain areas to a greater degree. Feet, axillae (arm pits), ears, and groin are most frequently targets. Secondary yeast infections in the areas of inflamed skin are very common. Think chronic ear infections, or toes that are always red and are being licked all the time. In these situations the problem rarely gets solved unless the allergies and the infection are treated. Identifying the cause of the skin problem often involves a series of tests. Fungal cultures, skin scrapes (to find parasites), food trials of hypoallergenic diets, and skin or blood tests to identify pesky allergy agents are all part of the discovery process. Don’t forget the obvious…treat those fleas!! A single flea is enough to make an allergic dog or cat miserable. And remember – ALL pets in the house must be on flea control, even if only one is itching. We are lucky to have so many easy and effective products on the market. Food trials must be Continued Next PAGE
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done carefully, meticulously, and for a long enough period of time to provide accurate information. There are many commercially made limited antigen or hypoallergenic diets available and I recommend you discuss these options with your veterinarian. Unfortunately, it seems all too common that well intentioned pet owners are simply doing food trials incorrectly. Immunotherapy (commonly known as “allergy shots”, but are now also available as oral medication) can be of great help when necessary. Pets must be allergy tested first, and owners committed to a long term process, but relief can be obtained against a wide variety of environmental antigens. For less severely affected pets, fatty acid supplements in the diet can be helpful (use only high quality products) and many great shampoos are available. One point to make about shampoos – so many of us tend to think that over shampooing will dry out the pet’s skin that we are hesitant to use these high quality medicated shampoos as often as needed. Without getting too complicated, most of todays medicated shampoos are “soapless” and do not strip the natural oils off the skin like all the shampoos from years ago. Oral medications are also very commonly used to control symptoms. A wide range of (but not all!) antihistamines are safe for pets – make sure to check with your veterinarian. Cortisones are widely used when their potency is needed, but they tend to have a lot of side effects. They typically are used for short periods in controlled doses. A newer oral medication that blocks inflammatory pathways in the body is now readily available to veterinarians. It has none of the side effects of cortisones and I have seen some truly excellent results with it. Until genetic engineering solves the mystery of allergies, we will continue to make use of today’s products. Use them in combination and use them often and you will meet with your best success.
Summer is Here… and so are Mold Spores Vickie Howell
e received a call from a homeowner a couple of weeks ago regarding several spots on the wall in the closet of her guest room. Ms. Helen told me that her granddaughter was coming to visit for spring break and that she wanted to prepare the guest room for her arrival. She had read online that vinegar would remove mold spores in a non-toxic fashion, so she washed the wall down and two days later, the spots had returned and she thought there were more of them. When we arrived to look at the suspicious closet we were greeted by two rambunctious rescue pups. Ms. Helen is a foster mom for abused or neglected animals and she typically hosts two dogs at a time, loving them back to life. Giving Zeus and Zach time to adjust to our presence in their home gave us an opportunity to discuss a few more specifics pertinent to her findings in the closet. Once we were able to cover the
basics of how often she opens the door to the closet to allow for air flow, to whether any of the contents had been obviously damp or wet. It was also important for us to know what products she had used when she was treating the issue prior to calling us for advice. Ms. Helen was very concerned as she maintained a clean home and she didn’t understand how this could happen to her. We reassured her that this is not reflective upon her cleaning abilities, in fact, mold is all around us. It grows naturally and can be found in varying levels throughout our environment. Going upstairs to inspect the guilty closet, it was pretty obvious that the species of mycotoxin that had chosen to take up residence in her guest room, was immune to vinegar. Vinegar is a mild acid and can kill up to 82% of mold species. While many mold-killing products on the market contain ammonia, Ms.
Helen was concerned about the health and environment of Zeus and Zach. I explained that we always use a broad spectrum botanical disinfectant to treat mycotoxins. I am extremely confident in this product, as it has been proven to kill 99.99% of the EPA test micro-organisms and is frequently used in hospitals to not only address fungi, but bacteria and viruses as well. Ms. Helen was ready to go… she wanted this fungus removed. While many restoration contractors would be raring to go, I believe this is the time to educate the consumer. I needed Ms. Helen to understand that in order to address this fungus appropriately, we needed to find the source. We have to look behind the surface growth and find the underlying issue. This is where most homeowners throw out the flag that says… how Continued Next PAGE
JD Green makes a friend at Caws 4 Paws.
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much will this cost me? My educated response is, I don’t know. I never know what is behind that wall, what needs to be removed and replaced to get to that source for the why. My educated guesstimate leads me down the path of mycotoxins needing moisture, temperature and food/host, meaning they like to be wet or damp, they like the temperatures we humans like to live at, and they want something to eat, which could be drywall or the stuff on our hands when we touch the doors. While it did not appear that the walls or floor in the closet were wet, I used a non-penetrating moisture meter, which loudly expressed they were wet below the surface. We then used a hygrometer to check the temperature and relative humidity in the room. Results were 60% relative humidity, which was 16% higher than other rooms in the home. So now we had documented two of the three parameters that the mycotoxins need to survive. Removing the walls in the closet we found wet insulation and discovered a squirrel’s nest. Outside on the porch roof we found a four inch section of the roof flashing pulled away from the siding. While I’m not accusing the squirrel, I believe that there was just enough of a gap to allow water in, which wet the sheathing, then the insulation, then the wall board and the floor, which provided the damp environment, warmed up by the heat in the home, acted like a petri dish with a closed door to the closet, which had a food source… Special note, the guilty closet was also home to a very special event, two years earlier a rescued “puppy mill” mama whelped her puppies, and was allowed to keep every one of them. Mold spores can severely impact the indoor air quality in your home and can be expressed as allergies, respiratory ailments or even headaches and memory loss. If you think that you might have mold growing in your home or business, call Mascoma Renovation & Restoration for assistance to take the steps necessary and address the problem immediately. Vickie Howell is Co-owner of Mascoma Renovation & Restoration.Vickie and her partner Kevin Marcom left the big-box franchise world of restoration companies and opened the doors to their baby, relocating the business from Enfield to Plainfield, NH.Their passion for giving back to the community is evident in how they interact with their customers and their volunteer work in the Upper Valley. They hold multiple industry accreditations and pride themselves on assisting homeowners to close the gap not just apply a band-aid to the situation. www.mascomarest.com Restoring Order to Your Chaos Summer 2016 Continued NEXT PAGE
Mycotoxicosis (Tremogenic Toxins) in Dogs
Mycotoxicosis is a term used to denote poisoning by food products contaminated by fungi (i.e., moldy bread, cheese, English walnuts, or even a backyard compost). As well as being toxic to humans, fungi release various toxins, also called mycotoxins, that are toxic to cats and dogs.
Symptoms and Types The severity and type of symptom will ultimately depend on the amount and type of mycotoxin ingested. Some of the more common symptoms associated with mycotoxicosis include:
Muscle tremors Seizures Panting Hyperactivity Vomiting Uncoordinated movements Weakness Increased heart rate Increased body temperature Dehydration Lack of appetite (anorexia) www.4LegsAndATail.com 15
• • • • •
Garden Composted Manure Mix Paddock Materials Driveway Material Stone Delivery Available
How To Rescue an Animal,
909 Route 120 • Meriden, NH
Part 1 John Peaveler W. Fairlee, VT
nimal rescue situations are probably the single most likely form of emergency anyone will ever encounter. Let that sink in for a moment. Because of the sheer number of animals in the world and their vulnerability, there is a very good chance at some point in your life you will be confronted with an animal rescue scenario. Whether it is a loose dog or cat, a straying farmyard animal, or injured wildlife such as a bird or squirrel,it is likely that a time will come when you will be the help an animal needs. Will you know what to do? Welcome to the first in a series of articles that will help you gain a better understanding of how to rescue animals, where to take them, what individuals and organizations are involved, and more. In this article I’ll focus on dog rescue, but expect more to follow in later issues. The first rule of any animal rescue situation is that your own personal safety comes first. For the amateur rescuer, that very often means calling for help. If you are not able to rescue an animal without endangering yourself or others, then the best thing you can do is to call for help. Call 911 if the safety of others is at risk (e.g. traffic, rabid animal), but it’s a good idea to also save the phone numbers of Continued Next PAGE
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your local warden, sheriff, state police barracks, ACO, and animal shelters. The second rule of animal rescue is that the safety of the animal comes second only to your own. You should not harm them to save them. That sounds obvious, but not every animal wants to be saved, and dealing with a potentially dangerous dog can harm both them and you if your skills and equipment don’t match up with the need you’re seeing in front of you. Use good judgment and don’t have too much pride to make a phone call. Sometimes you have to stop, regroup, and maybe go get help or more equipment in order to accomplish your goal. It’s always better to delay than to fail or cause avoidable harm. If you want to be prepared for animal rescue, there are three basic things you should always have around: a long slip leash, a pair of thick gloves, and a goodsized towel. Now we move on to some practicalities for when it’s clear that action on your part is appropriate. You want to always maintain a safe distance between yourself and the dog. What that distance is will vary between individuals. With some fearful or feral dogs, that distance can be pretty great. If a dog is particularly fearful but it looks like they are getting into a dangerous area like a roadside, simply getting between them and the source of danger will likely push them toward safety. That’s because fearful animals have what’s called a flight distance, or the distance at which they will flee humans. Sometimes that’s a mile and sometimes it’s a foot. The point is that if you don’t need to, or can’t handle the animal, then don’t. Just get them moving towards someplace safe. Now suppose you’ve found a dog with an injured leg. Wounded dogs are often very defensive, but you still need to maintain a safe distance. That distance can now be translated to the thickness of a glove or a good towel. Finally, lets look at the how to approach an unknown dog. The rules are to get low, and move slow. Talk gently and soothingly. Unless you’re confident you’re working with a very friendly pet, make sure you maintain the safe distance. With dogs that means you don’t just put your unprotected hand to their
nose. If you’ve got good strong gloves, that’s a great start, but if you’re getting strange signals, take it a step further and use a stout 2 foot stick to make your first physical contact. Let them smell it, then begin to use it to pet under the chin, slowly working down the neck, going no further than the shoulder. Don’t touch them on the top of the nose or head. Also avoid poking them, but instead use the stick to pet them just as you would with your hand. Watch their behavior the whole time to help you decide what’s safe. If you’re getting growls, barks, bites, and you’re not adequately trained and equipped, it’s probably time to call for help. If the animal is friendly, then at
least you’ve taken precautions to avoid any injury. This process of evaluation works well for both injured and uninjured animals. Evaluation gives you the information you need to proceed safely, and is a critical step when dealing with any animal. Now be safe out there, and never stop learning. John Peaveler is an Animal Welfare Consultant with over ten years experience working with all types of animals on three continents. He lives with his wife and two children in West Fairlee, Vermont and continues to work and write at home and abroad.
BRINGING HOME BABY A
t long last your new puppy or kitten, is home! You searched the internet to find the perfect match, went through an interview, a house visit, bought cozy pet beds, some bowls, healthy kibbles, a toy or two. You are ready for this new adventure. Until the kitten (super friendly and affectionate at the shelter) won’t come out from under your king-size bed. Or, the puppy (supposedly crate trained) chewed himself out of a wire cage and pooped on your bedroom carpet. What happened? Why is this homecoming nothing like you had imagined? According to Jim Hanaphy, Executive Director of Operation Kindness, one of the largest no-kill shelters in Texas, one the biggest problems for shelters and rescue organizations is the return rate of their animals. Many adopters don’t realize the integration of a pet, especially a shelter pet, takes time, and patience. The key to a mindful transition is seeing the world through their eyes. Often, the animal has been through a lot. Most likely he was found in an abandoned building, dumpster or field. After an adrenalin raising chase he was captured and locked up in a cage. Next, a people petted and prodded him to determine his level of well-being. He was washed, groomed and vaccinated, then neutered and stuck in a room with other animals, with similar levels of anxiety. All done with the utmost kindness and compassion. However, it’s a shock to an animal’s nervous system. Then, every so often, people will stop by, play with and pet him.... and eventually leave him again. One lucky day, a person shows up and falls in love with the button nose, the brindle coat, or the unusually colored eyes. The animal will act sweet and playful in this environment because, although it isn’t ideal, it has become familiar. “Hallelujah” you think as you sign the adoption papers. The drive home is filled with happy anticipation, but once you open the carrier, or take off the leash, everything changes. One of my readers shared this story. Buster was an outgoing and affectionate rescue kitten, but when we got back to my house he vanished for 36 hours. Even when my husband and I left the house he didn’t come out to eat or use the litter box. The second night, about 3 am, I heard Buster mewing piteously from under a bureau. I put his food within reach. I spoke to him. I dangled a shoelace. No go! He didn’t budge. Mew, mew. What would Nicole do? “Nicole would tell me to lie down quietly on the kitten’s Continued NEXT PAGE
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level and think reassuring thoughts to communicate with him.” I laid down on the floor and closed my eyes. I said to Buster in my mind, “I know you are in an unfamiliar place, and it is very sensible to be cautious. You are an intelligent boy! You did a great job taking care of yourself out in the world by being cautious. Now you’re in your new home, a safe place. It’s ok to explore and get to know us. We like you a lot and we are not going to do anything scary.” Soon the kitten ventured out from under the bureau. He laid down next to me and went to sleep, his tiny breath rising and falling as we cuddled, then he began to explore the house. Now he is the lord of the manor. The Nicole Method-- genius! Anne Killheffer In order to build a relationship Ann had to meet the kitten where he was … scared and anxious. Often, the most important thing we can do is to sit, or lie down with the animal and simply breathe. Breath is a beautiful way to connect with another being. A deep abdominal breath calms our mind and puts us immediately into the present moment. And when we are present and available we naturally offer a sense of security, which is exactly what our new family member needs. Making ourselves available through breath a few times a day will do wonders when we transition a cat, or dog into our life. As Anne reported, it took very little time to change the experience for the insecure cat, a few deep breaths, paired with a little patience can be the beginning of a beautiful connection. Nicole Birkholzer,founder of Mindful Connections,Inc.is an animal intuit, mindfulness expert,and former executive coach.When her pets began to show her how to tune into their true language, Nicole’s life shifted miraculously,and she understood firsthand their astonishing ability to transform our lives from ordinary to extraordinary.Nicole is the author of the book Pet Logic: See the world through your pet’s eyes - and experience your life through a beautiful new lens.As a workshop leader,author and criticallyacclaimed speaker,her mission is to facilitate mindful connections between people and pets - one story,one talk,one workshop at a time.She lives in Vermont with her partner David,two horses,three kitties,a pup,and one sassy goat. Summer 2016
Homeopathy – Little Doses with Big Effects
Dr. Anne Carroll, DVM, CVA
have always been fascinated with homeopathy, since I encountered it over 15 years ago. I was treating a Shar Pei who had gotten a snout full of porcupine quills and somewhere in his big wrinkled nose a quill was buried. It was festering and he was congested and miserable and it would not resolve no matter what medications we tried. We were planning a surgery when his owner met a stranger on a plane who gave her little white pellets he said would help. I was incredulous that she would consider feeding some unknown substance to her dog. She announced that not only did she give it, but a huge amount of drainage had come out of his nose within hours and he had been totally fine ever since. “Dr Carroll,” she asked, “could that stuff really cure him like that?” She had given the remedy Silica, at that time I had no idea, but I certainly was going to look into it. This was my introduction into the world of this subtle yet potent medicine. The wonders of homeopathy: it is a system of medicine developed by the German physician Samuel Hahnemann
200 years ago. He observed that small doses of substances could help treat symptoms; the very same symptoms that would be caused by taking these substances in larger doses. He described this as the Law of Similars, and that “like cures like”, and the name homeopathy reflects this fundamental approach, homeo=same and pathy=disease. Unlike drugs or even herbs, homeopathic remedies are too tiny a dose to have a pharmacological action on the body. Because of this, homeopathy has been surrounded in controversy. As advances in modern science progress, electron microscopy and other technologies can see particles smaller than before. This has opened a window into a world where communications and stimulations occur in the body via ‘nanoparticles’, measured in picograms (one trillionth of a gram), and this has led to the recognition of nanopharmacology, or the ability to impact the body with substances much smaller than the drugs we are currently using. In Dr. Hahnemann’s time, he could not use technology to prove the effect of his tiny doses. He could only show that it worked by using them in real cases, so he faced the same doubts by scientists then as today. In the last 20 years homeopathy is gaining ground again world-wide, in both human and veterinary medicine. For the past eight years I have worked with Dr. Betty Jo Black, a certified veterinary homeopath, who has brought a whole other realm of treatment options for our patients. Take “Rufus” for example. He is a lovely Manx kitty who was adopted in 2010 by his devoted owner despite a history of stubborn diarrhea. That diarrhea proved to be Inflammatory Bowel Disease, where the digestive tract is too inflamed Continued NEXT PAGE
20 4 Legs & a Tail
to work correctly. Usually we can manage fairly well with alternative supports including diet, probiotics, and Chinese herbs. But Rufus would not eat the diets or herbs and preferred to curl up in a ball, making acupuncture difficult. In 2011, Rufus was evaluated by Dr. Black for homeopathy. Belladonna and Sulfur were prescribed and in 2013 Phosphorus, between the other therapies we were using. By this time he was taking antibiotics, immunosuppressive drugs, and getting a steroid shot every 2 - 3 months as well. He still had mild diarrhea and would often have a very red raw bottom. He was cranky when he did not feel well and would fight with his brother, Romeo. By 2015 he was losing weight, vomiting, and dripping diarrhea. He felt so poorly he would only growl at Romeo and not even chase him to start a fight. Dr. Black gave him Podophyllum, which matched his emotional and physical symptoms at this point. Finally we saw a change. He has needed only one steroid shot since this remedy, and that was six months ago, but more importantly, his stools are normal and he feels great for the first time in years. Rufus is a good example of the benefits of homeopathy. Remedies can be given dissolved in a bit of water so they are tasteless and easily accepted by even the most stubborn patients. They are also very safe, since being so dilute they have no outright pharmacological actions and therefore no side effects and can be used alongside other drugs. Yet its tiny nature allows it to work on the most basic levels of body function to restore health when bigger, stronger, more measurable therapies fail. Rufusâ€™s case also shows that it is not easy to pick the right treatment from the over 2000 choices that are available. Homeopathy can be used to treat any physical or emotional problem by itself or as part of a more complicated treatment plan. It is also used for most routine surgeries and trauma cases to help minimize pain, bruising, or bleeding. It can also be used to lessen any adverse effects that may stem from vaccination. Cancers can also be impacted by homeopathy, sometimes dramatically. For the critics, homeopathy will no doubt remain too unbelievable and denounced as hogwash. But for this practitioner, I donâ€™t need to see a nanoparticle or understand quantum physics to know homeopathy works, I have experienced it first hand and that is enough for me and all the patients who have shared the same life changing experience. Dr.Anne Carroll is 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 www.chelseaanimalhospital.com Summer 2016
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Animals In Service W
Cory Batch, DVM
e often hear of dogs serving in the military. Their speed, strength, and abil ity to follow orders make them ideal for military service. Dogs, however, are not the only animal companions to assist our troops. In remembrance of them, let’s look at some other contributors from the animal kingdom.
“Cher Ami” Pigeons, like dogs, have a long history of working side by side with humans. These birds served in both world wars as messengers. One of the most famous was Cher Ami, a homing pigeon from Great Britain. Cher Ami was employed by the U.S. Army Signal Corps in France during World War I and is credited for saving nearly 200 soldiers. On October 3, 1918 she successfully braved and endured heavy fire from the Germans to deliver a message to her headquarters 25 miles away. Two other pigeons were killed before she was sent. When she arrived, she had been shot through her breast, lost one eye, and one leg was hanging on by a tendon. Army medics were able to save her life but not her leg. They fashioned a wooden peg leg in its place and sent her to the United States for her retirement. She was the recipient of the Croix de Guerre in recognition of her gallantry in battle.
“Oscar” AKA “The Unsinkable Sam” Cats are not so often seen on the battle lines. It may have something to do with their total lack of interest in pleasing their humans. Nevertheless, their curiosity and independence mean they will show up when they choose. For example, this intrepid feline was a case study in cats having multiple lives. He started his military career on the German side in World War II. He was on the battleship, Bismark which was sunk on May 27, 1941 in the North Atlantic. Hours after the battle, he was rescued by the British and named “Oscar.” Oscar then began his time on the WWII Veteran, Oscar HMS Cossack where he helped escort convoys. Unfortunately, the Cossack suffered a similar fate to the Bismark. The ship was torpedoed off the coast of Gibraltar in October of the same year. Oscar again survived and made it to shore. Oscar then received a new ship and the new moniker of “Unsinkable Sam.” His new ship was the HMS Ark Royal, an aircraft carrier which had been involved in the sinking of the Bismark. The Ark Royal , however, was also sunk by a U boat in November. Oscar (perhaps wisely) was then retired and lived out his remaining days in Belfast. 22 4 Legs & a Tail
Amazing Grace Michelle Barry
o matter how exhausted of mind and body, every liv ing creature deserves a chance at a peaceful end in life. This is why, a fellow animal rescue, Gerda’s Animal Aid in Townshend, VT, contacted us here at Mountain View Farm Animal Sanctuary this past winter. They inquired if we would take on a recent rescue that they had initially saved from a dire fate; we obliged after hearing her story. Standing in a pen with at least thirty other horses, awaiting her turn to be photographed and videoed for a sale ad, was a weak black mare. She still held a glimmer of hope in her deep brown eyes. No longer an Amish family’s devoted cart horse of many years, she was now simply known as “number 481.” Tagged with a barcode sticker on her hip, initial tagging for shipment to slaughter, she was given one week to grab a person or organization’s attention. A week to gain another chance at life before being loaded onto a trailer with countless others, slotted for slaughter over our country’s border in Canada. Her luck was found when Gerda Silver, of Gerda’s Animal Aid, spotted her and raised the necessary funds with the help of her supporters. They pulled her from the kill pen and sent her in a trailer headed north. Instead of being delivered to a slaughterhouse she was now going on to a new life and a future. Following a necessary 30 days of quarantine, the mare was discovered, from a tattoo under her upper lip, to be a registered Standardbred mare. She had raced in her early years and then gone on to be a broodmare known by the registry as Mardonnaray, and dubbed un-rideable by a vet. This was when Gerda made the call to Mountain View Farm Animal Sanctuary in the peaceful green mountains of northeastern Vermont. After hearing her story our Founder, John Pastore, and the Board and sanctuary manager, Michelle Berry, decided that she was indeed a deserving candidate for much needed rehabilitation and retirement. Upon arrival, the hardships that the resilient mare had endured were visibly apparent. From that day
on, life was going to be much kinder for her. Despite her weak, starved and arthritic body, after her first few days at the sanctuary, her obvious zest for life earned her the new name, “Grace.” Grace has been with us here for a little over two months now and is doing very well with her rehabilitation process. It is clear that her many years of diligent work for her human owners, and the later neglect that she suffered, may always have a lingering effect. Though some days may still be tough from time to time, Grace will receive the proper care and management she deserves for the rest of her years, to be healthy and happy. She takes great pleasure in grazing on the green grass pastures, strolling about the property, and hanging out with her two pals; a pair of minis rescued from abuse and neglect a year ago. The Mountain View Farm Animal Sanctuary is a nonprofit Vermont corporation since 2003, dedicated to providing farm animals and equines, especially those with a difficult past, a good future and a chance for a long and healthy life. Additionally, we educate the public on appropriate care and treatment of animals. Our residents come from a variety of backgrounds. Many are rescued from abuse and neglect. And some are with us due to hardships faced by their previous owners which forced them to responsibly surrender their beloved pets to ensure they received the appropriate care for the rest of their years. In addition to rescue and rehabilitation efforts, we also hold educational tours and participate in educational programs to educate the public on ethical treatment of animals. We attempt to spread awareness and perhaps prevent future cases of neglect. To learn more about us,volunteer, schedule a tour,or make a donation towards the care of the current residents and future rescues,please visit www.mvfas.org,contact email@example.com,write us at PO Box 38,East Burke,VT 05832 or call 802-626-9924.
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Heat Stroke In Dogs Elisa Speckert
What is Heat Stroke and How is it Treated?
ogs are unable to tolerate very hot weather as well as people. People have the ability to sweat in order to cool themselves down, while dogs have to rely on exchanging warm air in their bodies for cooler air in their environment by panting. Excessive panting can be one of the first signs of heat stroke. You may also notice difficulty breathing, lots of thick saliva, bright red mucous membranes, dehydration, vomiting, lethargy, disorientation and uncoordination. If left untreated at this phase, heat stroke can progress to shock, causing grey or pale blue mucous membranes, bloody diarrhea, coma, seizures and death. If you notice ANY of these symptoms of heat stroke, it is advised that you begin measures to cool your dog down, starting with taking a rectal temperature. The normal temperature for a dog can be up to 102.5 degrees. If your dog’s temperature is elevated, move him to a cooler
to cool your dog’s temperature to less than 103 degrees, stop these measures in order to avoid hypothermia. If you are unable to cool your dog, he should be taken immediately to a veterinarian, ideally performing cooling measures along the way. Irreversible damage to organs and cells can occur at 106 degrees. Any dog that has suffered from heat stroke should be examined by a veterinarian. Abrupt, severe increases in body temperature can cause dehydration, while excessive vomiting can cause an electrolyte imbalance. Additionally, laryngeal edema, heart problems, kidney failure and seizures are also potential problems that can occur due to heat stroke. A complete physical examination and possible blood work and radiographs may help to prevent your pet from suffering from these potentially devastating problems. Your veterinarian will
ensure that your dog’s body temperature remains in a safe range and may suggest subcutaneous or IV fluids to replace fluids lost during the heat stroke. If you have suspect that your dog has suffered from heat stroke it is imperative that you bring him to a veterinarian right away. Heat stroke is a very serious condition and can be fatal if not corrected in time. If you have any questions regarding heat stroke and your dog please do not hesitate to contact your veterinarian. Elisa Speckert is a graduate of the University of Vermont with a degree in Animal Science and a veterinary technician at River Road Veterinary Clinic in Norwich,VT. www.RiverRoadVeterinary.com
environment immediately. If your dog’s temperature is above 104 degrees, cool him by submersing him in cool water for several minutes and then placing him in front of a fan. Pouring cool water on him or covering his face and feet in cool, wet towels is another option if a bath is not available. Ice baths are not recommended as they can actually worsen the problem by causing the immediate constriction of blood vessels, trapping the heat inside the body. Isopropyl alcohol can also be applied to the pads of the feet to encourage cooling since dogs actually have a few sweat glands on the pads of their feet. Continue monitoring your dog’s temperature every 5-10 minutes. If you are able Summer 2016
Letting the Cat Out of the Bag: The Wonderful World of Animal Idioms Mark Carlson
aybe I should just let sleeping dogs lie, but it’s time to let the cat out of the bag. I know this might put me in the dog house, but once I get started, I don’t like to change horses in mid-stream. Wh at a r e t he or ig i n s of s ome of ou r most commonly used animal idioms? Some may surprise you. But even if curiosity killed the cat, I’m probably safe. Besides, the early bird gets the worm and I got up at 6 a.m. ‘Letting the cat out of the bag’ goes back to the 1500s, when Europe was a barter and trade economy. Sometimes fraudulent farmers, claiming they had a ‘pig in a poke’ (a piglet for sale) in a bag, had instead put in a cat. But if the cat escaped or was discovered, it was ‘out of the bag.’ We’ve all heard about it ‘raining
cats and dogs.’ For years I believed the story that it derived from the Middle Ages, when small animals slept on the thatched roof of houses and barns. When it rained, the thatch was slippery and they slid off, literally raining cats and dogs. But there’s no evidence this is real. For one thing, can you think of a single dog that would choose to sleep on a roof for warmth and shelter? Not my dog, that’s for sure. No, the phrase’s origins are lost to history. A few days ago I heard a man in a bar asking for ‘The hair of the dog.’ Supposedly a hangover cure, its origins have nothing to do with drink. In superstitious times, it was believed that when bitten by a rabid dog, a person could avoid rabies by applying hair from the same dog to the wound. Nonsense, of course. Just think about how many people managed to get hair from an animal that was as ‘mean as a junkyard dog.’ I’d rather get the shots. Jim Croce gave us the popular line ‘meaner than a junkyard dog’ in his 1973 classic ‘Bad, Bad, Leroy Brown,’ but the phrase may go back far ther, possibly to the 19th Century. Have I got you g r inning like a Cheshire Cat yet? Or are you about ready for a catnap? But, creeping in on little cat feet, I’ll continue. Have you ever been to a ‘dog and pony show?’ They were popular in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries. Originally small traveling circuses w it h per for ming anima l ac t s, t he phrase has long since come to mean an over-hyped, heavily advertised public event. Not a dog or a pony in sight. Entertainment is really going to the dogs. It’s been pretty cold in San Diego lately. In fact, it’s been a ‘three dog Continued NEXT PAGE
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night.’ No, not the 1960s rock group. It’s an old Alaskan Inuit idiom that means it’s so cold you need three dogs to cuddle with to stay warm. Sounds like the Cat’s Pajamas to me. In the 1920s, during the flapper and Jazz Age, any ‘cool’ or ‘hip’ person was a Cat. Saying someone was the ‘cat’s pajamas’ or ‘cat’s whiskers’ was the same as calling them ‘cool.’ Or they could be the ‘bee’s knees,’ if you can believe it. I once asked someone a question they were reluctant to answer and I immediately said, “Hey, cat got your tongue? ” There is no actual incident that spawned this old phrase. It’s simply a children’s’ nonsense idiom that dates at least back to the 1870s.
REASONS TO SCOOP
ecently I noticed a person walking their dog. After the dog pooped, they both kept walking. As a pet owner, part of your responsibility is to pick up after your dog. If doing the right thing isn’t enough, here are a few more reasons to consider:
Well just look what the cat dragged in. No need to analyze this one. Cats love to please their owners and we’ve seen what they can catch and bring before us. As for the tail wagging the dog, that’s from the 1860s and was used for some political comments and essays. Not much has changed. It’s become a dog eat dog world. But that’s a horse of another color. Now, don’t have kittens, but I’m so hungry I could eat a horse. This article might make you howl at the moon, so I’ll just run off with my tail between my legs. Originally published in San Diego Pets Magazine When not visiting his in-laws in South Royalton, Mark Carlson spends much of his time in North County, CA with his wife, Jane and his Labrador Retriever, Saffron. He is an award writer and an aviation historian, with numerous articles and books including his latest, Confessions of a Guide Dog. Legally blind, he travels and works with Saffron, and is a member of several aviation, maritime, and veteran organizations. www.musketmania.com
- Hollywood hunk Bradley Cooper can pick up almost any woman he wants, but finds it attractive when women pick up after their dog.
Leave The Heavy Lifting To Us!
- Marriage website E-Harmony is considering adding the question, “Do you clean up after your dog?” to their match survey. When we contacted a rival match website, their response was, “We don’t give a crap!”
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- Walking your dog and cleaning up afterwards burns more than 200 calories per day. - In some local communities, failure to pick up can result in a fine of up to $500. - There are several very common diseases that can be transmitted to dogs, cats and people through feces. These include Giardia, roundworms, Salmonella, and E. coli.
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- Nobody likes to walk through a yard that is hiding “doggie land mines.” - Flies will consume and lay eggs in feces. These same flies will then come into your house and then spread disease as they pause on your counter and food. - The shocking truth is that most dogs will engage in the unsavory practice of eating poop, at some point in their life. Dogs evolved as carnivore/scavengers and feces were considered fair game in lean times. Summer 2016
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Dog Grooming Basics Jasmine Breiner
ummer is upon us. Hello suntans, swimming, BBQ’S and hiking! The arrival of summer also means it’s time to think about your dog’s grooming. Whether your dog is a short haired or long haired breed, your furry friend’s coat needs a grooming routine. While most people like the low maintenance that short haired breeds offer, do not mistake low maintenance for no maintenance. It is important to bathe your dog regularly for healthy skin and a shiny coat. Bathing can also limit shedding and keep them soft to the touch. Be sure to bathe your dog with shampoo and conditioner, rinse well, do this at least three weeks apart or more, (unless directed more often by your Veterinarian). If bathing occurs too often, it can dry out the skin and strip away their natural coat oils. If you must wash them, and it has been less than three weeks since their last scrub, make sure to use only water.
Most dogs love to be brushed, whether you think they need it or not. Not only is this a good chance to spend some quality time with your dog, it can also be very relaxing for them. To your pup, getting brushed can feel like receiving a massage. In addition to bonding with your pet it gives you an opportunity to look for any injuries, skin irritations, or any new lumps or bumps you might not notice otherwise. If you find it difficult to brush your dog, ask a groomer for some tips on desensitizing your pet to the brush. For those owners with long haired breeds, brushing is something you are very familiar with. Brushing your dog every day will keep those pesky matts at bay. Hair cutting and trimming are also very important for any long haired breed. Some people are able to cut their dog’s hair at home, but it is highly recommended you take them to a professional groomer. There are many different haircuts for each breed so you and your groomer should be able to find the cut you like. Getting your dog groomed regularly will keep them comfortable and cool. It is recommended to get dogs groomed every 6-8 weeks, but some dogs will need grooming more often. This will help keep the grooming cost down, as well as keeping your pet looking and feeling their best! The benefits of having your dog seen by a professional groomer are limitless. Professional groomers are taught to look for skin irritation, lumps and bumps, ear infections, cuts or scrapes, and other abnormalities that you may not notice. When drying a dog, the hair parts in such a way that the groomer gets a very good look at the skin. Professionals are also very careful to cut nails properly and have the ability to identify ear infections. Jasmine recently moved to New Hampshire, from Oregon, in fall of 2015 with her Fiance and young daughter. She attended a certified groom school, and worked as a groomer at Petco for several years before opening her own grooming salon. She is currently at groomer at Bradford Veterinary Clinic, 802-222-4903 or e-mail at email@example.com. Summer 2016
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Lights, Camera, HORSES! O
ne of my favorite Kevin Costner movies is Dances With Wolves. Even though I’ve seen it a hundred times, I always pick up something new. For example, there is the scene when Costner, now friends with a Souix tribe, rides horseback into battle against the Pawnee. During the melee many are killed, including the horses. While this was a million dollar Hollywood production, it appeared to be so real that it made me curious. Did the horses really fall down or were those special effects? Were they real horses or something created by the Disney labs? I started by looking at the 1934 classic, The Charge of the Light Brigade starring Errol Flynn. The battlefield set was lined with trip wires called a Running W, designed to trip the cavalry horses. For the filming of the climactic charge, 125 horses were trip-wired. Of those horses, 25 were killed outright or had to be put down afterward. Flynn, an accomplished horseman, was so outraged by the number of horses injured and killed during the charge, and by director Michael Curtiz’s seeming indifference to the carnage, at one point, while arguing with Curtiz he couldn’t contain himself and physically attacked Curtiz. They were pulled apart before any serious damage was done. The Charge sequence of the film itself, forced the U.S. Congress to ensure the safety of animals in motion pictures. The ASPCA banned trip wires from films in its guidelines as well. Because of the use of trip wires and the number of horses killed, the movie was never re-released by Warner Brothers. In this modern era of cinematography, horses are carefully trained and are as integral to the movie as the humans they share the screen with. Whether in classics like Dances with Wolves or more current films like Avatar and Django Unchained, horses are trained to perform safely. “Think of a falling horse as an acrobat,” says Petrine Mitchum, author of Hollywood Hoofbeats: Trails Blazed Across the Silver Screen. “They need to be athletic and fearless, and also need to have a very trusting nature. So they have to not only have a calm, strong nature but also be willing to place total trust in their trainer.” Continued NEXT PAGE
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802-484-9100 | PO Box 126 | Reading, VT 05062 30 4 Legs & a Tail
When 12 Gauge isn't playing with Katie Stygles, he stands 16.3 hands.
The humane way of making a horse fall is actually centuries old. It’s an old battlefield technique of teaching a horse to fall so that - I mean, it’s not for a very good reason on the battlefield - so that you can fall a horse and use him as a shield. But as it has evolved as really an art in the film business, it’s a process by where the horse is trained very, very slowly, starting at a standstill. The trainer will pick up one of the horse’s front legs, maybe tie it up and slowly push him over - always onto soft ground - very, very carefully done so that the horse lands on his shoulder and he’s not hurt. And once the horse is confident doing that - that he’s not going to get hurt - then they’ll start doing it at a walk and then at a trot and then finally, at a gallop. This can take months to teach a horse, and not every horse is going to go for it. I mean, it’s a very strange thing to do. But some horses just trust their trainer enough and have the athletic ability to do it. And from what I heard from talking to stunt men who trained their own falling horses, which is usually the case, they had horses who actually came to love it and anticipate it and were real star athletes. In a recent interview on National Public radio, Mitchum pointed out: You can tell a trained fall when you’re watching a film by looking for the horse’s head - looking at the horse’s head. And as the horse is galloping along, the trainer will pull the horse’s head, usually to the left, and he will fall on the opposite shoulder. So he’s taking the weight off of the outside by pulling the horse’s head to the inside and then cueing him to fall over onto the other side. Of course, the stunt man is wearing a saddle that has rubber stirrups on that side so when the horse is falling, he’s not falling on anything hard. Of course, the rider has to get his leg out of the way, if possible. So it’s a very, very carefully orchestrated - almost a dance move, if you will. The training is very specialized and not just anyone can do it,” says Mitchum: It requires extreme patience and confidence, and the ability to read the horse and know what it is capable of, and when to push and when to back off. The trainer also has to have impeccable timing and a certain fearlessness, as well. To deliberately fall down with a 1,000-pound animal in a gallop is not for the faint of heart. Summer 2016
Are You Helmet Tough? W
Jessica Stewart Riley
hether its all-around events like western pleasure, or prorodeo events like calf roping and barrel racing, helmets are not commonly worn in western competition. The straw or felt cowboy hat is and has always been a major part of the traditional attire. I started showing in American Quarter Horse Association All-Around competitions as a 10 year old, and later became a member of the AQHA Professional Horsemen and trainer of youth and amateur competitors in events like western pleasure, western horsemanship, and In 2010 Nicole Aichele and Blondie broke a world trail. Besides young children com- record for fastest time on a WRPA standard pattern. peting in leadline and walk-trot, and now youth competitors in English events (because of a rule change in late 2013), it’s fairly rare to see someone wearing a helmet at AQHA shows. This lack of concern for safety that seems to be the norm has always caused me an internal struggle, because my “other” job is as an educator in the Vermont Technical College Equine Studies Program, where safety is our first priority. The focus of our program is teaching the next generation of equine professionals to be the best horsemen possible. Because of this, we require all riders to wear an ASTM-SEI approved helmet at our facility when mounted, regardless of the discipline they are riding. Recently there has been a lot of buzz on social media about helmets in the western part of the equine industry. Champion barrel racer Fallon Taylor made a splash at the 2014 National Finals Rodeo by thundering down the alley and bursting into the Thomas and Mack arena in a helmet. She went on to win that go-round of the competition and also become the 2014 Women’s Pro Rodeo Association World Champion Barrel Racer. There have been numerous articles and interviews with Fallon where she talks about experiencing a life-threatening head injury, and how that motivated her to start promoting helmets in barrel racing. Another professional barrel racer, Nicole Aichele, started wearing a helmet after she learned about traumatic brain injuries in sports like football, snowboarding, and skiing in a high school class she was taking. She decided that it was just too much of a risk not to wear a helmet in such a fast and potentially dangerous sport. She started wearing a helmet by choice and became known as “the helmet girl” on the rodeo circuit. Years later, after receiving large amounts of fan mail from young barrel racers who had been made fun of for wearing helmets, she decided to start the #HelmetTough campaign to help eliminate the stigma of helmets in western competition. Fallon Taylor decided to use her notoriety to bring more awareness to Nicole’s #HelmetTough movement. 7 time World Champion Header Jake Barnes recently received attention for trading his cowboy hat in after experiencing a traumatic brain injury that had him laid up in a hospital bed for two months. Initially it was questionable whether Jake would walk and talk again, let alone ride and rope. Although he didn’t want to, he started wearing a helmet at his wife’s request, and now feels comfortable wearing one on a regular Continued NEXT PAGE
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basis. Jake has stated in a variety of articles that he would prefer if the focus was on the quality of his roping rather than the apparel he is wearing, but is happy to use his celebrity status for a good cause. Overall, I am encouraged by the #HelmetTough movement, and the number of people, although small, that I have seen wearing helmets in western disciplines lately. I don’t think that things will change overnight, but I can also remember a time that you didn’t see anyone wearing a helmet at a ski area, and now it’s become rare to see someone on the slopes without. It’s not about how much we trust our horses or how well-trained they are; the inherent risk is a part of the sport we love. Even the best horse can be taken by surprise or lose traction, slip, and fall. Wearing a helmet increases the chances we won’t be severely injured and unable to ride. It doesn’t make us any less of a cowboy or cowgirl; it just makes us smarter (and safer)! Jessica Stewart Riley is an Assistant Professor and the director of the Vermont Technical College Equine Studies Program in Randolph Center, VT. She is a graduate of Johnson State College, UVM, and Vermont Tech, as well as a member of the American Quarter Horse Association Professional Horsemen and an American Riding Instructor Association Certified instructor in Western, Huntseat on the Flat, and Stable Management. www.vtc.edu/equinestudies Summer 2016
Choosing The Right Doggie Daycare Facility For Your Pet G
oing to work? A doggie daycare facility can give your pet quality care, a fun place to play for the day, and most importantly, it can give you peace of mind that your pet is not home alone all day.
Pros and cons of using a doggie daycare facility
Your pet depends on you to take good care of them, even when you have to go to work for the day. Friends and neighbors may not have the time to look after your pet, particularly on those long work days. Leave the care of your pet to professionals, such as a pet sitter or doggie daycare facility.
A facility specializing in the care of your pet allows your pet to:
- Avoid the stress of spending a long day all by themselves - Have fun playing with other dogs, or simply to be by themselves if needed - Receive more attention and supervision then if left home alone - Be monitored by staff trained to spot health problems - Be in a facility designed to foil canine escape artists
Dogs that donâ€™t get along with other dogs
Does your pet feel more comfortable being by themselves? Some doggie daycare facilities are designed to accommodate those dogs who need to be by themselves, where they will still receive the same time and attention as those dogs that play with others.
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by themselves, be sure they are comfortable with other people. If your pet has an aggression problem, you need to let the daycare facility know. Before taking your pet to daycare, make sure they are current on all vaccinations. It is also a good idea to accustom your pet to the daycare facility. This allows you to work out any problems before your pet starts daycare. Find out if the facility offers transition visits for your pet to become accustomed to the staff and facility. Being in a familiar environment decreases any stress/anxiety that your pet may experience. Before you head to the daycare facility, double-check that you have your pet’s medications and special food/treats (if any). Your veterinarian’s phone number, and the contact inforWhat to look for On your visit, ask to see all the places your pet may be taken. mation for you and local backup, should also be supplied. When you arrive with your pet at the daycare facility, remind Pay particular attention to the following: the staff about any medical or behavioral problems your pet has, such as history of epilepsy, separation anxiety or fear of thun - Does the facility look and smell clean? der/loud noises. After the check-in process, hand your pet to - Is there sufficient ventilation and light? a staff member, say good bye and leave. Avoid long, emotional - Is a comfortable temperature maintained? partings, which may upset your pet. Finally, have a good day at - Does the staff seem knowledgeable and caring? - Are pets required to be current on their vaccinations, work knowing that your pet is in good hands and will be happy to see you at the end of the day. including the bordetella (kennel cough)? - Does each pet have their own adequately sized indoor-out- At the end of the day, the daycare facility should provide you with a verbal report on how your pet’s day was, and if there were door run and a schedule for exercise? - Are outdoor runs and exercise areas protected from wind, any concerning behavior/medical issues. rain and snow? - Are there cots and bedding provided to allow your pet to rest off the concrete floor? - Is there enough space for your pet to move around comfortably? - Can the owners bring a pet’s special food or treats? - What veterinary services are available, if needed? - How are rates calculated?
How to find a good Doggie Daycare Facility
Ask a friend, neighbor, veterinarian, animal shelter or dog trainer for a recommendation. Once you have the names, it is important to do a background check. Find out whether your state requires doggie daycare facility inspections. If it does, make sure the facility you are considering displays a license or certificate showing that the kennel meets mandated standards. After selecting a few daycare facilities, confirm that they can accommodate your pet for those specific days, and your pet’s special needs (if any). If you are satisfied, schedule a visit.
How to prepare your pet
Be sure your pet knows basic commands and is well socialized around other people and pets. For those pets who need to be Summer 2016
Elsie, The Borden Milk Cow E
lsie the Cow is one of the most famous marketing mascots ever created. She has been more popular than the Pillsbury Doughboy, better than the Campbell twins, and more accessible than Tony the Tiger. During her heyday (1940s-1960s), Elsie led the Rose Bowl parade, raised $1.6 million for World War II bonds, celebrated her tenth birthday at the Roosevelt Hotel, her 25th at the Waldorf, and collected keys to more than 600 cities. She appeared on Broadway, traveled to Hollywood to play Buttercup in the movie of Little Men, and has written several recipe books. She gave birth to one of her sons at Macy’s. (Red drapes were discretely draped across her store-window birthing area.) And she was a lovely guest wherever she went. She often delivered 30 gallons of milk to her hosts as her breadand-butter gift. She has received a plentiful supply of fan mail from all over the country.
When it came to children being told they were going to see Elsie, the Borden Cow, Elsie raised as much excitement as Joe DiMaggio or Mickey Mouse. She was almost of a rank with Santa Claus, she was so well liked. Best of all, she proved extremely effective at selling Borden Dairy Products.
How Did Elsie the Cow Come About?
The first ads that featured Elsie were created in 1936 by Borden’s director of advertising, Stuart Peabody, and a staff illustrator, Walter Early. In the 1930s, milk was not the drink we know today. Much that was sold in the U.S. during the early part of the century was disease-laden. In 1907, the Department of Agriculture revealed that dairy cows frequently carried tuberculosis and that unsanitary conditions on farms meant other illnesses were carried in the milk supply as well. Most milk was shipped to stores without any form of processing. The Borden Company was in the forefront of change. They had purchased a dairy in New Jersey that was among the first to install equipment for pasteurization. However, the world changed slowly when it came to perceiving that “processed” (pasteurized) milk was better than regular cow’s milk. Chicago was the first city to require pasteurizing of milk (1908) but the first state-level mandate did not occur until 1947 when Michigan passed such a law. This meant that in the 1930s, dairy processors like Borden had their work cut out for them to convince the public that their milk was more worthy—and safer---than the dairy cow on a family farm. Borden ad man Stuart Peabody knew his first approach to selling Borden milk needed to be through the medical establishment. If doctors understood that pasContinued NEXT PAGE
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ing on and off an over-sized turntable with several milking stations. The guides at the exhibit were assigned to keep track of questions asked by the public. This meant that Borden quickly learned what was catching people’s attention: 20 percent of the questions concerned operation of the Rotolactator; 20 percent concerned the whereabouts of the bathroom; and a full 60 percent of the questions were about which cow was Elsie. Clearly, the Borden Company needed to cast the role of Elsie! Those in charge of the cows quickly identified one cow as having more “personality” than the others, so she became Elsie. The actual cow was a Jersey cow born in March of 1932 at Elm Hill Farm in Brookfield, Massachusetts. Her real name was “You’ll Do, Lobelia.” And thus began Elsie’s public appearance schedule. For practical reasons, Elsie was sometimes played by a substitute cow from a farm that might be closer by to the location where she was scheduled to teurized milk wouldn’t make people sick, appear. they would start recommending it to their One day in 1941 Elsie (You’ll Do, patients. Lobelia) was on her way into New York City Peabody felt the ads needed to be light for a milking appearance at the Schubert in tone. His first ads were in the form Theater. Her truck was rear-ended by of Letters to Mama: “Dear Mama, I’m so another truck, and Elsie was badly hurt. excited I can hardly chew! We girls are The handlers took her back to her farm sending our milk to Borden’s now. Love hoping that something could be done, but Elsie.” These ads were accompanied by the veterinarians agreed that her back was artist Walter Early’s illustration of a perky, friendly cow. (The Advertising Age Encyclopedia of Advertising credits Walter Early; the Borden site attributes David Reid with having created the image of Elsie. Reid would have been only 19 at the time; perhaps he was a member of the marketing team who created Elsie.) As early illustrations show, Elsie had a kindly face, huge brown eyes, and wore a chain of daisies around her neck. She generally wore an apron, and whatever she was doing, she was surrounded by her calves. Husband Elmer, later to be the face of Elmer’s Glue, took orders from her, repairing things around the house. In 1938, Peabody expanded Elsie ads into some consumer publications, and he began buying radio time for her as well. Elsie took off quickly. A survey done in the 1940s found that 98 percent of the American public recognized the Borden cow.
broken; saving her would not be a kindness to Elsie. For Borden’s sake, it was fortuitous that they had other Elsies-in-waiting. For a time, the demand for Elsie was so great that Borden established an East Coast Elsie and a West Coast Elsie. All was well until the late 1940s when local newspapers picked up wire service stories about the doings of both Elsies on the same day. Borden received irate letters from parents who were upset that their children now knew there was more than one Elsie. After that there were still multiple Elsies, but there were never two Elsie publicity appearances on the same day unless it was clearly the same cow going from one place to another.
Elsie’s Family Grows
Elsie traveled to Hollywood in 1940 in a private railroad car to play Buttercup in the film, Little Men. Her calf, Beulah, was born during this time, and Elsie and Beulah returned together for the final summer of the New York World’s Fair. When Elsie was pregnant with Beulah’s little brother, special provisions were made. Elsie was in the middle of a series of guest appearances at Macy’s, so Macy’s put up some temporary drapes in the store window where Elsie was the main attracContinued NEXT PAGE
World’s Fair Brings Need for Real Cow
For the 1939 New York World’s Fair, the theme was World of Tomorrow. Companies came in to show their vision of how they expected their industry to look in the future. Borden’s exhibit was an advanced view of a dairy barn. It involved a “Rotolactor,” which was an automated rotary milking parlor with live cows comSummer 2016
tion. The baby was born quite discretely without the birth having to be in public view. Then a contest was held to name the baby bull. One million entries were received and ultimately the judges picked “Beauregard” in honor of the Civil War Confederate General P.G.T. Beauregard at the Battle of Bull Run. (They clearly disregarded the fact that Elsie would have been a Union cow.)
in The New York Times on October 17, 1940. She was to be awarded a “Distinguished Service” award during the second season of the World’s Fair. Among those in attendance at the awards ceremony were two bear cubs, a horse and colt, two goats, and some monkeys. The bear cubs, who had been provided with milk bottles, were acting up during the event and after a few glowering looks from Elsie, those in charge of the show had them removed from the scene. Elsie’s citation read: “The New York World’s Fair hereby confers upon Elsie this citation for distinguished service; because she has been such a sensational attraction at the New York World’s Fair; because of her genius as a decorator and designer of barnyard boudoirs; because she has inspired so man thousands of calves of the future to have better parents; because she created so much extra work for countless newspaper photographers; because she has established that a girl can have a career and still be a good wife—but mostly because through her, more of the milk of human kindness is available in all quarters than ever before.”
A Typical Day for the Real Elsie
A typical event for Elsie was described
Elsie the Cow Takes on a Cartoon Personae
After World War II, the world of television became a more important part of American life. The Borden marketing department needed Elsie to appear in television commercials. Live cows are interesting to see at fairs, but their dramatic ability is severely limited to simply looking cow-like. The marketing department’s next task was to create an animated version of Elsie. There are many examples of these commercials on YouTube.
Elsie Retires and Then Un-Retires
By the late 1960s Elsie had been retired by the marketing department. They felt it was time for an updated marketing approach. But with flagging sales during the early ‘90s, Elsie was revived in 1993. In 2000 she was voted one of the ten most outstanding marketing mascots of all time, and today her face adorns the packages of Eagle Brand Condensed Milk (Borden’s original product), and she is also mascot for the 22,000-member Dairy Farmers of America.
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This article first appeared on the website, www.americacomesalive. com During the summer, America Comes Alive publishes more stories about American dogs and other animals. Visit the website and sign up for “American Dogs” to receive the stores in your In Box. Or email Kate Kelly at firstname.lastname@example.org Summer 2016
Strolling of the Heifers Strolling of the Heifers Weekend
(June 3-5, 2016) is the centerpiece of our annual cycle of programs and events — it’s the big, fun, public way we offer for people to connect with farmers and producers of healthy local food. Always rated one of Vermont’s Top Ten Summer Events, Stroll Weekend attracts tens of thousands of people to Brattleboro, Vermont — which is a great place to visit in its own right, often included on “10 best” lists of small towns. We were also listed in Livability.com’s list of the Top Ten Summer Festivals in the United States in 2013.
It’s a weekend of fun and education for the whole family, built around the world-famous, agriculturally-themed Strolling of the Heifers Parade, which takes place Saturday, June 4th at 10 a.m. sharp on Brattleboro’s historic Main Street. Watch scores of lovable heifer calves led by future farmers, followed by many other farm animals, bands, tractors, floats, clowns and much more. When it’s over, follow the crowd to the all-day 11-acre Slow Living Expo for food, music, dance, demonstrations, exhibits and fun, all related to our mission of sustaining family farms by connecting people with healthy local food. And that’s not all: Stroll Weekend starts Friday night, June 3 from 5:30-8:30 with our Gallery Walk Street Festival featuring a culinary competition and food, music and dancing in the street; and continues through Sunday, June 5th with our Farmers Breakfast, the cycling Tour de Heifer and the Farm Tour; plus many other related events during the weekend. And preceding the weekend is the third-annual Slow Living Summit, June 3-5 in downtown Brattleboro — a conference focused on the development of nurturing and mutually supportive entrepreneurship. Summer 2016
Strolling of the Heifers: As the Story Goes… “Orly, you have to do something about this,” Dwight Miller told his neighbor, Orly Munzing, back in 2001 as they strolled through Miller’s Dummerston, Vermont orchard. “Farmers are slowly going out of business. Dwight Miller People don’t know where their food comes from. If they knew how hard farming is, they’d support their local farmers.” Munzing took Miller’s words to heart, and then she had an inspiration. She had recently visited Pamplona, Spain, site of the famous Running of the Bulls. As a way of honoring and supporting local farmers, she envisioned a slower, friendlier, female version of the Running of the Bulls — the Strolling of the Heifers. Farmers would bring their heifer calves, lead them up the historic Main Street of nearby Brattleboro, and afterward, there would be a festival where people could meet the farmers and learn about local foods. A parade turned into a movement, when Munzing went to work with a team of volunteers, and the first Strolling of the Heifers parade and festival took place in 2002. The word “localvore” had not yet been invented (it came along in 2005). But from the beginning, the point of Strolling of the Heifers was to support and sustain family farms by connecting people with healthy local food, and by showcasing the farmers and food producers who bring it to them.
The Gentleman Farmer I “
t came with sheep.” I was told, as I smiled and looked at the outstretched hands of my host. I believe I actually chuckled and thought, “How perfect a thing to hear on this lovely New England Farm.” Tucked in a valley in Meriden, NH and very close to Cornish, NH is a piece of land that is at once peaceful and imposing. The farmhouse has great charm and warmth. Greetings came from the family
and a Great Pyrenees. A chicken coop and barn lay just ahead with an imposing climb to the hay field on the left. Actually not overly imposing, but my arthritic knees were happy the barn was on the same level as the house. Tom, Stephanie, Mallory (in college), Christopher (10th grade) and Ian (7th grade) Schell had purchased Penniman Farm, and indeed it Tom & Pepe
came with sheep. Penniman Farm has had sheep or cattle on it full time since the late 1700’s. Originally the farm had Merino sheep. The farmhouse was built in 1797 for $130.00 and the Schells are only the 4th owners. William Jarvis was the United States Consul to Portugal in the early 1800’s. During this posting he introduced 4,000 Merino Sheep, the first ones, into the United States, most going to Vermont. They are known for their fine wool and herding instincts. He was an integral part of the booming wool industry in Vermont. But, we are talking about the Schell’s farm. Originally I had wanted to write an article on “The Gentleman Farmer - The challenges of running a business and working a farm at the same time.” When I asked Tom about this he simply stated, “Stephanie is the farmer.” With a smile she told me that they all work hard to keep up with chores and help is readily available from the whole family. We walked down to the barn together. Tom was very excited that the barn swallows were back. As we entered a clean and well organized barn I was quickly swept away to my youth. The animals were getting loud and excited for their dinner. Stephanie had 3 bottles for the kids and a lamb. Ian had joined us, the three of them were ready to jump in and were waiting for me. Tom’s mention of the barn swallows had indeed brought me back. My Uncle’s barn was next door to my home. It was large and always smelled of hay, Continued NEXT PAGE
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with barn swallows swooping through the center aisle. The creak of boards and color of the light would calm me. My hosts were patiently waiting for me to get my camera ready, and all I wanted to do was stand there and remember how it felt when I was young. I thought to myself “What challenge?” while we spent a wonderful period of time in the barn feeding bottles and watching as the kids jumped and played around a bale of hay. Honestly ,I am not sure how long we were in there, but it was calm. At one point Tom was kneeling down and one of the kids was gently nuzzling its head under his neck, almost like giving a kiss in thanks for the bottle. Stephanie held a lamb in her lap and was joking with her family. What’s the challenge of being a Gentleman Farmer? It shouldn’t be 4 Leg’s & a Tail writing about the challenge, possibly A Local Business Journal should be writing about the “Challenges of running a dental office with a farm to get back Stephanie & Button to?” Next we were off to the chicken coop to collect eggs. Ian has a shed at the end of the driveway to sell the eggs. In Tom’s words he is making some “serious scratch.” The pun was appreciated. They currently have 38 chickens, 3 goats, 10 sheep, 2 cows, 1 dog, and 6 cats. 4 Piglets are expected soon. As I was getting in the car to leave, a happy and smiling Schell trio were saying goodbye and inviting me to “swing by anytime.” I was struck with
Ian & Tom feeding Strawberry & Pepe
how comforting and at peace this family was. These Gentleman Farmers don’t have any challenge they can’t face together. Dr. Tom Schell is a Partner at Schell Noble Dentistry in Lebanon, NH Stephanie Schell is the Community Resource Director for the Town of Plainfield, NH.
Mike Fusco of Orford and Moose
Kidney Disease in Cats
Catherine MacLean, DVM - Grantham, NH
idney disease, also known as renal disease, is a very common problem in cats. It is mostly older or geriatric cats that are affected, but younger cats can be affected as well. About 1 in 3 geriatric cats have renal disease. One of the most common misconceptions I hear from owners when I discuss renal disease, is that their pet is urinating, so its kidneys are working just fine. In fact, this is not true. Both cats and dogs will typically lose about 75% of their renal function before they show clinical signs. If your pet is not urinating, it is because the kidneys have stopped making urine. The kidneys have failed and can often not recover. There are two types of renal disease in cats: acute and chronic. Acute renal disease can affect cats of all ages. It occurs when your kitty has an acute/sudden injury to their kidneys. Possible causes include trauma, anti-freeze ingestion, toxin ingestion, an infection, etc. Cats that suffer from acute renal disease are often very ill and may stop producing urine. When urine production stops, the prognosis is usually very poor. With acute renal disease itâ€™s important to diagnose quickly and start treatment as soon as possible. This helps protect the kidneys and gives your pet a better chance of a full recovery. Chronic renal disease is more commonly seen in middle age to older cats. It occurs over the course of time as kidneys stop functioning properly. Cats with chronic renal disease tend to compensate for months to years. Mild signs of illness and dehydration will occur before full blown signs of renal disease may be noticed by owners. Chronic renal disease can be an aging change, but can also be caused by a kidney stone, cancer, polycystic kidney disease or other conditions. Early signs of chronic renal disease include increased thirst and larger wet spots of urine in the litter box, or a subtle amount of weight loss. Cats with moderate to severe chronic renal disease may show decreased appetite, noticeable weight loss, decreased grooming, vomiting, lethargy, paler gums, bad breath, and noticeably increased thirst and urination. Early signs of chronic renal disease can sometimes be detected when a veterinarian does a physical exam on your pet. Your veterinarian may notice abnormal kidney size, pain when palpating your catâ€™s kidneys, or may find stones in the Continued NEXT PAGE
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situations I have maintained them by just switching their diet and monitoring their kidney values every three months. I also have patients that fall somewhere in between with their treatment plans. Unless acute renal disease is caught early, it is not a curable disease. However, there are steps that can be taken to make your pet comfortable and give them a good quality of life. Renal disease does not automatically mean your cat has a death sentence. By making sure your pet has annual exams and by doing routine blood work when appropriate, renal disease as well as other diseases, can often be caught early. This gives your pet the chance of a better outcome and a longer, healthier life.
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.
urinary tract. Blood work and a urinalysis will often shed light on how well your cat’s kidneys are functioning. If your veterinarian discovers that your cat has renal disease, treatment is often initiated. What type of treatment chosen for your pet depends on how advanced the renal disease is and what the owner is willing to do. Treatment can be as simple as changing your cat’s food, to giving fluids and other medications at home. Bella, a beautiful 17-year-old Himalayan began seeing me in September of 2015. New to the area the owners were concerned that Bella was not acting like herself. One owner had been away for several weeks and when she returned she felt that Bella had lost a lot of weight and her appetite was diminished. On exam, her gums appeared to be a paler pink than I would normally expect and her kidneys felt smaller than normal. Blood work showed that Bella was anemic (low number of red blood cells) and had elevated kidney values. In Bella’s case her anemia was caused by her renal disease. Treatment plans were discussed including further diagnostics with an ultrasound, diet change, giving subcutaneous fluids, and medication to help regenerate Bella’s red blood cells. The owners decided against the ultrasound, but were open to treating Bella’s anemia with medication, doing subcutaneous fluids, vitamin B12 injections, changing her diet, and a long list of other things. Bella was very lucky because her owners cared very deeply for her and wanted to give her every opportunity possible. Over the course of the next six months we resolved Bella’s anemia and keep her kidney values stable. Unfortunately, as is often with geriatric patients, other health issues came up and Bella made her journey over the Rainbow Bridge this March. Bella’s story is on the extreme end of the spectrum in terms of the care that she needed. Most of my renal patients don’t need such extensive treatments. I have several geriatric cats who were diagnosed with renal disease very early on because of routine senior blood work. In these Summer 2016
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Sled Dogs, Summers, and “The Unchained Gang” M
Tanya Sousa - Originally published in Vermont’s Northland Journal
usher Jim Blair and his family pack of a mind-blowing 40 sled dogs, live in Eden, Vermont, racing and offering sled dog rides to visitors – in summer as well as winter. Musher Jim likes to live against the grain—or at least in ways he finds true to himself and his dogs. He’s not one to do as things have always been done…just because they’ve always been done that way. Sled dog racing has historically been both admired and cruel. Admired because of the incredible stamina and drive shown by dog teams and mushers, but also with the belief from generations back, that dogs that function as racers will be ruined if treated as house pets or kept other than isolated or chained outside on extraordinarily short lengths. When Jim was drawn to the sport in the mid-’90s he knew things had to happen differently for him to compete. And compete he and his dogs did. His dogs live in his home, socialize with each other in a very structured way in large kennels, or sometimes playing free outside. They live lives that fly in the face of historical sled dog keeping and training practices. Musher Jim usually runs six races a year, a respected, award-winning contender. In 2004 he and his team won an International Federation of Sled dog Sports (IFSS) race that put him on the charts, showing the world ever since that sled dogs can be champions without the chains. His team has been coined, “The Unchained Gang.” He runs the dogs if they are healthy enough and doesn’t put them through the longest distance sprints sometimes so grueling dogs die along the way or become badly injured. “Injuries can happen,” he admits, “but some of the races are just too far, and it’s risky, dangerous, and I won’t do those.” Now he usually competes in an 8-dog class, which he and his present racing team won three out of four years in Quebec, often performing faster than larger teams. Jim Blair was always competitive, playing sports and racing motocross, mountain bike races, and the like. He was a Nordic skier who trained year-round in Craftsbury and competed. He began taking house pets for exercise on a leash as he skied, and discovered the magic of a dog Summer 2016
pulling him along. He moved to using a harness. “One day someone asked if I’d ever done skijoring. I’d never heard of it, but it included so much of what I loved— skiing, dogs, and competing.” The winter sport where skiers are pulled by dogs (or horses or vehicles in some cases) became a keen interest of Jim’s. Then he watched a sled dog race in Elmore, Vermont. “I was fascinated,” he remembers. Jim became “Musher Jim” by teaching himself what to do. He found a gifted dog who already knew the commands and used him to help train the others, a tried and true technique he still relies on today. “The retired leaders are great teachers. They train each other!” That original Continued Next Page
dog fathered the white and well known “Luna” (sadly passed away not long ago), a team leader in her own right. Luna’s pups became team runners once she retired. Lovely white Luna and her teammates, young and old, found another retirement as well—being characters in Jim’s sister Deborah’s upcoming young adult novel series The Luna Tales. They hope the first book will be out soon. Jim keeps retired dogs as part of the family (adopting out a few to very special homes), and as tour dogs for short runs at his complementary business, Eden Mountain Lodge, where sled dog tours are available all year-round with either runner sleds in winter or wheeled sleds over stunning summer fields and sweet-smelling forests.“We do about 500 tours a year,” he said. The dogs are “Alaskan Huskies,” a racing, northern mixed breed (the mixed breed part could include nearly any kind of dog). The one ingredient they must include is a dose of Siberian Husky. The results are some typical husky-like dogs with blue eyes, for instance, and others who look like small border collie crosses, even some very Doberman-like. Very few really looked like what my vision of a sled dog used to be, but they all turn from coach potatoes in the cabin to instant balls of energy the moment Musher Jim calls their names for harnessing. They can’t wait to “get to work.” Because they do tours and train all year round, when winter comes again, they will be naturally conditioned and ready to keep winning. Also, because they’re so fit, Blair explains, they experience fewer injuries. “They also run to please me, not because they fear me,” he continued. “That’s a big difference.” Anyone interested in learning more about Eden Ethical Dog Sledding (also known as Eden Dogsledding Adventures) and summer tours may visit their website: http://www.edendogsledding.com Tanya Sousa is a published author of many magazine articles and several children’s picture books. Most recently, her environmental novel, The Starling God, made the short-list for the national “Green Earth Book Awards,” in the Young Adult Fiction category. www.RadiantHen.com www.forestrypress.com
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Homeward Bound T
he homing instinct is very strong in many animals, including cats. It’s not unusual for people moving to a new home to make frequent visits to their old home (especially if it’s not far away), to persuade their cats that they no longer live there. Not such a problem if it involves a few minutes’ walk, but cats can get ‘home’ from much farther away than that. Some cats have homing skills so well developed they are capable of finding their way back home over immense distances- in extraordinary cases, over dozens or even hundreds of miles. Take Sooty for example. When his family moved over 100 miles away, he somehow managed to find his way back to what he regarded as home. Another extraordinary cat named Pilsbury, an eight-year old English Tom, refused to accept that he now lived eight miles away. He went ‘home’ and was returned forty times, by which point he and his frustrated humans must have been able to travel the route blindfolded. To get to his former home the indomitable Pilsbury had to cross busy roads, and fields with herds of cattle. Even this persistence pales beside the record held by a tomcat named Ninja. In 1996 Ninja and his people moved from Utah to Washington State. Ninja obviously disapproved of his new home and disappeared shortly after arrival. A year later he turned up in Utah at his former residence, after completing a journey of some 850 miles. No one taught cats like Ninja how to find their way home. Until these cats were moved to their new homes they had never made the journey, so it is something of a mystery how so many have found their way back. There are actually two types of ‘homing instincts’: the first, with animals being able find a way to get home after being moved or lost outside their home territory is uncanny, but possibly given a cat’s extraordinary sensory abilities, such a feat is not so surprising. However, no one can fully explain ‘psi trailing,’ where cats catch up with humans who have either accidentally or deliberately left them behind. One such story tells of a cat who was left in Chicago with friends while the family moved to New Orleans. The cat abandoned the friends and managed to track down his humans in New Orleans. Anecdotal stories of this sort abound, but unlike stories of cats finding their way back home, we Summer 2016
have yet to find a fully authenticated case of ‘psi trailing.’ While researching homing instincts, scientists in the USA have worked with a group of cats. These cats were sedated, so that they could not remember their journey. Then they were transported on a complex route which finished at a maze, in which the cats were left to wake up. The maze had 15 exits. The scientists were intrigued to discover that more often than not, each cat exited the maze at the closest point to their home. Older cats performed better than younger ones. Homing ability dropped off with distances greater than 7.5 miles from home. A cat will return to their original home because they do not like changes. They have spent time and effort securing their home range, negotiating access and spraying rights with other cats, and generally getting on top of things. Suddenly they are yanked from their known environment and have to start all over again. Cats do not understand the necessities of changing homes for work or financial reasons. They know where they want to live, and if they get a chance, they’ll go there. So why cats have a homing instinct is relatively easy to answer. How they put that motivation into practice is much harder to explain. One theory is that cats are sensitive to the earth’s magnetic field. It is well known that the magnetic intensity of the Earth varies from point to point, and differences in the magnetic field can be detected even over a short distance. It is possible that cats can read these magnetic changes and use them in choosing their direction. In fact, this was tested in an experiment where a magnet was attached to a cat’s body, the homing ability was indeed disrupted as a consequence. Although magnetic changes may be important in a cat’s navigational system, cats may use multiple clues to find their home. For example, pigeons are thought to orientate themselves by the sun, and cats probably also have this as part of their built-in direction finder. Cats eyes are also more sensitive to a wider spectrum of light which they can use in navigation. Smell may be helpful for homing over relatively short distances, although that probably will not help a cat much beyond her natural range. The homing ability (or perhaps the motivation) can weaken (to some extent) over time. This is why it is strongly recommended that when you move home, you should keep your cat safely indoors for at least 10 days to two weeks, especially if you move a short distance away. Otherwise, you will never be short of an excuse to pop back to your old house and see how things are getting on. You might as well collect your mail while you’re at it. www.4LegsAndATail.com 47
Preparing Your Home
With Pets S ummer is a busy time for realtors in New England. Recently we were
checking out a few homes that came onto the market. The price points were within budget, the neighborhood was right and according to the listings, they had everything we were looking for. Unfortunately, the first home we toured was also home to a Bichon. No, she was not part of the sale, but her constant barking made it difficult to get a real feel for the home. Another home we visited was also home to several cats. We love cats, but when one snuck out while checking out the backyard, we spent most of our time trying to catch the cat. If you’re selling your home, your realtor has probably discussed curb appeal and de-personalizing your home for a quicker sale. If you are a pet owner and selling your home, here are some other tips for your consideration.
1. TALK TO YOUR PET’S VETERINARIAN FIRST.
One important thing to keep in mind is that your animal has its own needs, needs that are best discussed with your veterinarian. Talk to him or her about what you plan on doing, and how it will work with your specific pet or pets. This is especially important when your pet is older and may not adjust well to change. Selling a home can be just as stressful for the pet as it is for the home owner.
2. TEMPORARILY RELOCATE.
This may or may not be something you are willing to do, but it is easier to show-and-sell your home (and keep it clean), if your pets are not present when buyers arrive. If you have a friend or family member that you are comfortable leaving your animal with, it will give you the chance to eliminate all of the signs of having a pet in the house (which can significantly reduce a home’s value), and avoid the pet causing further issues. While I happen to be a pet lover myself there are many home buyers who are not. In fact some folks consider it a huge turn-off when looking at potential homes they may want to own.
3. REPAIR ANY DAMAGE.
As much as we love our pets, they are still animals, and pet damage is never attractive when selling your home. Dogs and cats will inevitably destroy something, including carpets, furniture, hardwood flooring, walls, doors, turf in your yard and your fence. All of this damage should be repaired prior to showing the home. This may require some investment on your part, especially if the animal has damaged expensive items like your hardwood flooring or walls in your house. Regardless of the cost of repair, though, the value you will get for your house will be well worth paying for the repairs.
4. REMOVE PET ODORS AND STAINS.
Pets have accidents; and while it is possible to get used to the pet smell over time, new visitors to your home will be sure to notice the smells. This is not something you want to happen. In fact, above all else, this may be the most important tip for selling a home when you have pets. Our sense of smell has a powerful effect on our emotions, our memory and on our perception of things. An initial urine odor on entering a house is sure to stick in the buyer’s mind, and he or she will likely deduct the cost of carpet replacement immediately Continued Next Page
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from an offer as a result. A strong odor is in fact one of the top reasons a buyer will pass on a home. Avoid this by having your carpet and flooring professionally cleaned, with a focus on removing pet odors. If the staining or odors are too bad, you may need to replace the carpet in the problem areas.
5. CLEAN YOUR YARD.
Pick up any messes in the backyard, and have any sod replaced and other damage repaired as necessary. You may be the kind of person who picks up after your pet regularly, or you may have a cat that causes very little impact to your yard. However, a large number of dog owners give their pets free reign of the backyard. This is a great life for dogs and cats, but it can be hard on the look of your lawn. One of the best tips, when selling a home with pets, is to make sure you don’t neglect the yard as this is just as important to some buyers as the inside of the home.
6. ERASE SIGNS OF YOUR PET FOR POTENTIAL BUYERS.
You want buyers to be as unaware of your pet ownership as possible. If they ask the question, you will have to answer honestly. However, you can often avoid this by taking necessary steps like those listed above. In addition, put away all pet toys, bedding, litter boxes and food – preferably at another location besides your home. Some realtors recommend removing all photos where your pet is present as well, and to look and make certain the animal does not show up in any marketing materials you create for your home. Like other forms of home staging, removing extra pet clutter is an important consideration when you are selling your property.
7. PREPARE PROPERLY.
Selling a home with pets takes work, but it’s worth it in the long run! You may do all of these things and still have buyers ask about whether you have pets. Sometimes it is impossible to hide all evidence, and sometimes they just ask anyway. Even if this happens, though, you have still done everything necessary to return your house to its prior pet-free status. Buyers will have little to complain about, because your house now looks (and hopefully smells) as good as it did before you had your pet. Summer 2016
Gardening For The Birds Catherine Greenleaf
hen people think of flowers, they often don’t think of the connection to birds. However, the flowers you grow in your backyard can either result in birds thriving or struggling to survive. The choice is yours. What exactly is the connection? Perennial flowers are the preferred nectar and pollen choice for many insects, including butterflies, moths and bees. Insects go through different stages of development, and birds benefit from all of them. Birds eat insect eggs, insect larva, and adult insects. In fact, birds need the protein insects provide in order to grow into healthy birds. This is particularly important for nestling and fledgling birds. Your average pair of parent birds will provide 6,000 to 9,000 caterpillars to their young during the 15-21 days before they leave the nest. Birds, insects and flowers have coevolved over millions of years to form a cooperative and mutually beneficial partnership. It is no accident that caterpillars emerge at the exact same time that baby birds start hatching. It is also no accident that native perennials bloom at the same time that butterflies fly out of their cocoons and look for nectar. A yard that does not provide plenty of insects will force parent birds to nest on other properties, or constantly fly long distances to neighboring yards to look for them. The further birds have to fly for food, the more potential there is for them to end up injured (hit by car, flying into a window, or grabbed by a cat). You can make a bird parent’s job a lot easier and safer by providing what they need right in your own backyard. If, come spring and summer, your yard does not look like a five-lane superhighway of flying insects, then this is bad news for the birds and their hatchlings. The key to success in attracting butterflies and other insects, is to plant perennials to cover the entire season for pollinators – from the earliest emergence of bumblebees in April to the last butterfly laying its eggs in a curled-up leaf in the fall. While Pachysandra, a Japanese ground cover, may be derided as an invasive, it is often the first plant to flower and provide vital nectar to newly emerging nests of bumblebees. Pieris Japonica, another nonnative, also provides much needed nectar in the very early spring. Other bee favorites include pulmonaria (Lungwort); columbine; perennial lamium, and native wild geranium – all very early bloomers. Without these early flowering plants, the first bee colonies to emerge in the spring Continued Next Page
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will die of starvation, and this has a direct impact upon bird survival. Native perennial flowers are the best choice for planting in your garden. The second runner-up is what I refer to as the “nearly natives,” or perennials that are not from the local region but have been planted in an area for so long the insects and birds have come to depend upon them. As spring progresses into summer, some ideal plants to have in your backyard include dandelion, red clover, Queen Anne’s lace, lupine, jewelweed and milkweed. Good choices for mid-summer blooms would be gooseneck, purple coneflower, perennial mint, honeysuckle, spirea, mallow, privet, liatris, viburnum, salvia, phlox, bee balm, anise hyssop, thyme, and astilbe. By the same token, native New England aster, sedum,oregano, spicebush, goldenrod, turtlehead, thistle, and Joe Pye-weed are ideal for bees, butterflies, and moths in late summer and the colder weeks of late fall. And then, of course, there are the annuals purchased from your nearby garden center, like fennel, lantana, cosmos, cleome, tithonia, mint and parsley, which benefit butterflies.Some of these plants offer nectar and pollen, and some provide their leaves to nourish a butterfly’s larvae. Be sure to give your business to reputable nurseries, ones that are organic, or businesses you are certain do not spray insecticides on their plants. Purchasing plants that have been sprayed with toxic pesticides will result in the death of many butterflies and other insects in your yard. And, of course, the birds are poisoned by eating these tainted bugs. Fostering a return to the natural cycles of insects and birds in your backyard means you can put away your insecticides, pesticides, and herbicides. Insects are not a threat to the American Dream, as preached in the 1950’s during the “Better Living Through Chemicals” days. If anything, insects are the answer to the problem of our rapidly vanishing bird species. Catherine Greenleaf is the director of St. Francis Wild Bird Hospital in Lyme, N.H. If you find an injured bird, please call (603) 795-4850 or go to: www.saintfrancisbirds.blogspot.com Summer 2016
Bats Do Matter!
Estate Wildlife Control Professional Removal & Exclusion of Wildlife
Squirrels • Chipmunks • Bats Beavers • Skunks • Woodchucks Raccoons • Fox • Coyotes • Moles Rats • Mice • Weasels Commercial & Residential NH & VT
603-523-9284 Cell: 603-630-8032 www.estatewildlifecontrol.com
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Scott Borthwick - Canaan, NH
t was a dark and gloomy night at the eerie castle... Just the opening line you would expect for a story about bats. Bats have had a bad reputation for centuries. You hear about bats entangling themselves in someone’s hair, but do you know anyone that has actually happened to? They are less likely to carry rabies than most other mammals. I have had many bats tested for rabies and all came up negative. A single little brown bat can eat anywhere from 3000 to
7000 mosquitoes a night! This alone shows how important bats are to our ecosystem. In today’s world we are experiencing more and more mosquito carried viruses such as Zika and Triple E (EEE). Bats are fun to watch at night swooping and diving in pursuit of annoying insects. So you can see how beneficial bats can be. They are currently suffering from white-nose syndrome which is devastating their populations. Especially the little brown bat. How can you help the bats? First you can bat-proof your house. Lots of bats are killed every year because they get into houses. Nothing makes me cringe more than stories of homeowners dealing with a bat using a tennis racket. One customer set out glue boards for bats before she called me. There were five dead bats on the glue boards when I arrived. While bat-proofing her house she asked what I do for woodchucks. When I told her I live trapped them, take them away and then euthanize them, she was horrified and told me how cruel I was. I explained that my method is the law and instantaneous, while killing bats is illegal, and they can suffer for days on a glue board. How do you bat-proof a house? First make sure all windows have screens and that they do not have any holes in them. Second while going in and out at night make sure you close the doors behind you. Next cap your chimneys. If you have a fireplace or woodstove, be sure to close the damper when not in use. Many a bat has followed an insect down a chimney and not been able to get back out. Inspect all gable end, soffit, and ridge vents to see that they are properly screened or plugged. Seal around window mounted air conditioners. Garage doors should remain closed, especially when the garage is attached to the house. All of these tips will help bat-proof your house. Just remember, before repairing screens or plugging holes you should have a professional inspect to make sure you do not trap bats or other critters in the house. How else can you help bats? Installing a bat house helps a lot. In the New England area bat houses should be painted black using a latex paint. This helps keep them warm. They should be made with rough sawn lumber so the bats have better traction. Bat houses should be installed facing south and at least 12 feet off the ground. They can be mounted on a post, a tree, or an out building. It would be best not to mount them on your house. Why should we do all this? Because BATS DO MATTER! 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 2016
Not Just For House Breaking Anymore
Do you need help with your dog’s difficult behavior?
How To Crate Train Your Dog Paula Bergeron - Grafton, NH
n the previous issue of 4 Legs & a Tail , I explored how crates can be used for more than house training. If used properly crates can be used for physical comfort, physical safety, and emotional well being. In part two, here is a basic guideline for conditioning your dog to use a crate comfortably. It is best to give you and your dog plenty of time to get used to a crate BEFORE you need to crate your dog. If you wait until the day before a vet visit, a kennel stay, or the first time you are scheduled to be away, it will be a much less gentle transition. So plan ahead and begin early. Keep in mind that crate training is a process rather than an event. Begin by placing the dogs food at the front of an open crate and allow them to eat with their paws outside of the crate. Once they are comfortable with having their heads in the crate to eat, begin to move the food farther back into the crate until they are eating with their whole body in the crate. Depending on the age of the dog and their past experience with crates, this step could take one day to one month… let your dog’s sense of comfort lead you. Once your dog will comfortably enter the crate without fear, have your dog go into the crate while you stand in front of the open door. No need to say anything, just quietly stand there until your dog sits down. Once they relax enough to sit down gentle step away. Do not say anything because you do not want your dog to jump up and race out…keep these exercises quiet and calm. Once you have accomplished having your dog sit voluntarily, repeat the process until your dog lays down in the crate voluntarily. Some dogs will skip the sit and go right into laying down in the crate just because they are already comfy, for more sensitive or anxious dogs this step will take much more time. (Hint: for the anxious dogs, bring a good book and place it on top of the crate so you will be able to enjoy some reading time as you stand or sit in a chair in front of the crate waiting for them to sit or lay down. Stay relaxed. Your dog will NOT relax if you are frustrated with waiting. Once your dog will lay down in the crate voluntarily, gently close the crate Summer 2016
door, and leave it shut for just a moment then gently open it again to allow the dog to know they are not trapped. Shut the door again, leave it for 30 seconds or more and open it again. Walk away allowing the dog to either remain in the crate of come out on their own… remember to keep this calm. Continue this step of closing the door and keeping it closed for a period of time, lengthening the time the dog stays in with the door closed until you feel they are relaxed enough for you to shut the latches and go and sit down somewhere in the room. Eventually you will see that your dog has begun to understand that the crate is where they are fed, and where they relax which is setting the crate up to be a wonderful safe and calm spot for your dog.
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A Few Guidelines For Crate Use. • Use the crate for night time sleeping with just the occasional treat of having the dog sleep at the foot of your bed. • Use the crate for feeding and for high value toys. • Use the crate for safety when guests arrive or other times of high excitement in your home. • No child should be allowed to enter or play in your dogs crate even if the dog is not in the house. Allow the crate to be your dogs place just for them. • It is important to stress to children and adults that it is unkind to approach a dogs crate while they are inside .A dog who feels trapped can become defensive and growl, snap, or bark if not allowed to rest and be left alone. • Do not use the crate as a baby sitter while you are at work. The rule of thumb is dogs are comfortable for a night of sleep and no more than a 4 hour stretch during the day. • If you need to use a crate for your dog during the day, hire a dog walker to come mid day to let your dog out and walk them and get some exercise. You can not expect a dog to have good behavior if they have spent too much time being still. • Do not place items in the crate for them to chew if you are not in the home with them such as bones, toys or plush animals. • Do not leave collars on while your dog is in the crate as they can become tangled and choke your dog. • Keep the crate in a space that is warm in the winter and cool in the summer. • Always treat the crate as a lovely home for the dog, never as a punishment for unwanted behavior. • Use the crate to prevent unwanted behavior but be aware if you treat the crate as a punishment then your dog will no longer want to go there. Your attitude is the beginning of your dogs understanding of the crate. So if someone comes into your home and asks… why is your dog in that cage…. just tell them that is Bruno’s crate… his own slice of peace in our house and see if by just reframing the language you are able reframe what the crate means for your neighbor, for you, and most importantly for your dog. Love your dog, by gifting them with a crate of their very own! 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. www.GoodDogma.com
Meet "Koukla", in Greek it means beautiful... And she is!
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A Rabbit With More Than Just A Lucky Foot R
ecently I caught a tale from baseball’s legendary play-by-play announcer Vin Scully, about San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner. I had heard that the future Hall of Famer was a good ‘ole farm boy, but I was sure that this one was made of the stuff that urban legends, or in this case country legends, were born. However, after further investigation, here is the story in text, originally from Tom Verducci’s 2014 profile of MadBum in Sports Illustrated: This may be the best Boone-like tale about the man they call Mad Bum. One day during spring training this year in Scottsdale, Bumgarner and his wife were roping cattle when Madison was startled by a large snake he figured was a rattler. He quickly grabbed an ax and hacked it to pieces. When Ali, an expert field dresser, examined what was left of the snake, she found two baby jackrabbits inside pieces of it and extracted them. A short while later the Bumgarners noticed that one of the rabbits had moved slightly. It was alive. Ali brought the rabbit back to their apartment and for the next few days kept it warm and bottle-nursed it. The rabbit soon was healthy enough for them to
release into the wild. “Think about how tough that rabbit was,” Bumgarner said. “First it gets eaten by a snake, then the snake gets chopped to pieces, then it gets picked up by people and it lives. It’s all true.” The pace of baseball is often criticized, but the flip side of that is that there is time for Vin Scully to spin a yarn about snake murder and rabbit rebirth punctuated by a “Meanwhile, line drive base hit to center.” What a sport!
By the way, this isn’t even the best story from that SI profile. That would be the fact that Madison Bumgarner once dated a girl named Madison Bumgarner.
Sometimes Teeth End Up In The Wrong Place Sandra L Waugh VMD, MS - Windsor, VT
hen puppies are born there are no teeth present inside of the mouth. The tissue that will produce each tooth is present within the bone of the jaw. Each and every tooth, both baby (deciduous) and adult (permanent), has its own group of cells to produce that tooth. As the puppy grows the tissue that will produce each baby tooth becomes activated at the appropriate time to produce that tooth. The crown of the tooth is made first, then the root is made and this pushes the tooth out of the bone, erupting it through the gum and into the mouth. Baby teeth are meant to be replaced by the adult tooth, again at the appropriate time. This process may go awry for a number of reasons. Sometimes there is no adult tooth tissue present in the bone, and therefore no adult tooth ever erupts. Sometimes the adult tooth is present but does not erupt into the mouth. Most commonly, however, is that the baby tooth fails to fall out when the adult tooth erupts. This leads to two teeth trying to occupy the same space in the mouth. A 3 year old Welsh Terrier had an unusual configuration of incisor teeth. These are the teeth at the very front of the mouth. There should be 6 upper incisors present. He had 8, 6 adult incisors and 2 baby incisors.
503 102 101 201 202
101, 102, 103 Adult incisors on upper right 503 Baby corner (third) incisor on the upper right
103 503 102 202 603 203 101 201 201, 202, 203 Adult incisors on upper left 603 Baby corner (third) incisor on the upper left
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The adult incisor teeth are the first adult to teeth to erupt. Normally, the baby tooth root is removed by the body as the adult tooth develops, leaving just the crown of the baby tooth to pop out as the adult tooth crown pokes up into the mouth. In this dog, the baby teeth 503 and 603 retained the full length and strength of the root. As the dog grew, the teeth must have pushed on each other, and for whatever reason the adult corner incisors (103 and 203) ended up in very odd places. 103 was sticking straight out of the gum and was not causing a problem. 203 was pointing up into the side of the cheek and eventually created a large sore.
A large ulcer had developed with an overgrowth of gum tissue as well (yellow arrow). The ulceration is hidden by the overgrowth of gum tissue in the photographs. This was so painful for the dog that he would not allow his mouth to be examined without sedation. Tooth 103 and 203 were extracted first and dental x-rays were taken. Now the deciduous teeth could be seen without any overlap. Because there was significant bone loss on the roots of both 503 and 603, these were extracted as well.
The final X-ray showing the remaining four adult incisor teeth.
The overgrowth of tissue on the ulcer was trimmed away and the ulcer was closed with sutures. The dog was seen 14 days later and was comfortable enough in his mouth to allow it to be examined without any sedation, but not quite enough to get a photograph!
Before and after extracting the teeth.
The ulceration area sutured.
Could the adult incisor teeth be moved back into a normal position? Technically, yes they could. Practically, however, this would require multiple visits with adjustment of the braces to produce such movement, with sedation required each time. This is hardly worth the time, effort and expense this would entail. The dog is not going to “miss” having these teeth, in fact he is happy to not have them. The goal in veterinary dentistry is to produce a pain free mouth, not to produce a “perfect smile”. A question I am often asked is “Do the teeth move after other teeth are extracted?” Such movement is common in humans and is why people are fitted with bridges or implants. Luckily, dog and cat teeth do not move after neighboring teeth are extracted. 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. Summer 2016
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Graphic by Morgan Heim
What coyotes are saying when they howl
he scientific name for the coyote is Canis latrans, which translates to “barking dog,” a perfect name for this species which has been called the most vocal of North America’s mammals. Less formally, the coyote is known as the song dog, and one listen to a group howl by a pack of coyotes makes it clear why. Rather than the simple but soulhaunting sound of a wolf’s howl, the coyote’s howl can be made up of high-pitched howls, barks, and yips that make it clear the coyote has a whole lot of lyrics in a single song. But what exactly do those lyrics say? The coyote has a range of vocalizations depending on social context and message. In 1978, Philip N. Lehner published his research of coyote communication and what the various vocalizations mean, which has been included in Coyotes: Biology, Behavior, and Management. “The vocal repertoire of the adult coyote contains eleven vocalizations, several of which are also given by pups. These vocalizations grade into one another such that their separation into eleven types is somewhat arbitrary based on their different sounds, behavior context, and physical characteristics.” The coyote language is complex and depends on the social situation, the coyote’s body language in addition to the sounds, the intensity of the vocalization, and other factors. Some coyote hunters are convinced they know more than eleven calls for coyotes. There is a lot of overlap in the sounds dogs, coyotes and other canid species make - from a startled huff to a whine of greeting, from an antagonistic growl to a bark of alarm. But coyotes take the language of canids to another level with their extensive list of sounds, especially the yips, howls, and of course their choral group howls. Lehner created the following 11 categories, which can also be considered sign-posts on a gradient of meaning and intensity. Continued Next Page
1. Growl - This vocalization holds no mystery. A growl is used as a threat, specifically for something within close range. 2. Huff - This is the expulsion of air through the nose and mouth, and is also used as a high-intensity threat in close proximity. Huffs are used, for instance, when there’s bickering over carrion. 3. Woof - This vocalization is made as both a low-intensity threat and as an alarm. It's a sound made when a coyote is startled and unsure of exactly what is happening, but knows it is not comfortable with whatever it is. 4. Bark - The bark is a long-distance threat or alert of low to medium intensity. 5. Bark-Howl - This is when the coyote gets serious about a threat. The bark-howl is used as a longdistance high-intensity threat or alarm. It starts with a bark and blends into a howl. 6. Whine - This sound is used to express submission and is usually given by a subordinate coyote to a more dominant coyote. 7. Yelp - The yelp takes the whine up a notch and represents highintensity submission. However, it can also be a response to being startled. As is the case with several other of these vocalizations, this categorization shows that coyote communication is more of a gradient. Lehner writes, “A yi-e-e-e often precedes or follows the yelp portion and resembles a high-frequency bark [and] appears on a sonogram like a short howl chopped into segments.”
8. Woo-oo-wow - This is the «greeting song» of coyotes, and is used during high-intensity greeting displays. The vocalization modulates in frequency and amplitude as a coyote›s motivation shifts, Lehner notes, and so can fluctuate from a whine to a growl. 9. Lone Howl - The lone howl is just what you probably already know it to be: a howl by a single coyote, which is often started with a series of barks that researcher R. M. Mengel called “herald barks.” As mentioned above, coyotes can distinguish individuals based on their unique howl, and the purpose of the howl is to announce one’s location to others in their social group. Often, the lone howl gets an answer, and the coyotes can find each other to meet up. 10. Group Howl - A group howl is sent up when two or more coyotes come together after being apart, or it could be given as a response to the howls of distant coyotes. It is, according to Lehner, essentially two or more coyotes giving their own lone howls either successively or simultaneously, as a way of giving out location information to any listeners. 11. Group Yip-Howl - This is what coyotes are really known for. The group yip-howl is sent up when coyotes reunite, or just before they separate to go off hunting individually. As more coyotes join in, the more intense the vocalizations become, increasing in frequency and amplitude. In other words, the many variations of coyote vocalizations show up in this chorus. The chorus tells any nearby coyote packs about whose turf this is, and thus keeps other coyotes away. It also reveals (or hides) how many coyotes are in the area and may help regulate coyote density through reproductive rate. Female coyotes will produce larger litters when there is little competition, and smaller litters when there is a high density of coyotes in the habitat. This is one of the secrets to the coyote’s success at spreading across the continent in the last century. (Note: This is also why indiscriminate killing of coyotes to decrease their density doesn’t work as a management strategy. Coyotes repopulate an area quickly and easily when competition is eliminated, with the population rebounding or even expanding in a very short time. Perhaps a more effective, cost-cutting and non-lethal strategy for reducing the number of coyotes in an area would be playing recorded group yip-howls to make resident coyotes think there is more competition for resources.) Mitchell writes, “Group yip-howls are produced by a mated and territorial pair of ‘alpha’ coyotes, with the male howling while the female intersperses her yips, barks, and short howls. ‘Beta’ coyotes (the children of the alpha pair from previous years) and current year pups may join in if they are nearby, or respond with howls of their own. And once one group of coyotes starts howling, chances are that any other alpha pairs nearby will respond in kind, with chorus after chorus of group yip-howls rippling across the miles.”
Myth of the Coy-Dog Yes, domestic dog and coyote hybrids are biologically
possible and have occurred; but no genetic sampling of coyotes has found evidence. Coy-dogs don’t survive, and here’s why. • The coyote pair bond is strong and long-term, discouraging interlopers. • Male and female are sexually active once a year, and only briefly. • The female is receptive for 10 days, although general courtship activity that strengthens the pair bond can last for months. • Pups are born in spring when food to feed hungry young is plentiful. • Males are fully engaged feeding mate and young in the den, often with the help of older offspring.
Yes, a female coyote might pair with a domestic dog in the absence of a coyote mate, but a male dog lacks parental instincts and soon departs the scene. Starvation odds are high without his help, as well as predation of pups when the female leaves the den to hunt for food. As a coy-dog hybrid, the rare survivor will reach sexual maturity in November, way off schedule with a true coyote’s breeding season in February. If a coy-dog does succeed in finding another hybrid to mate with, the second generation coy-dogs will be born in January, not May. The depths of winter are a tough time for the female to find food for herself and her young. As a third and final strike against coy-dog survival, mixing up the genes also mixes up the instincts that help true coyotes survive in the wild world.
60 4 Legs & a Tail
How Many Coyotes Are Howling?
“When people hear coyote howls, they often mistakenly assume that they’re hearing a large pack of animals, all raising their voices at once,” writes Mitchell. “But this is an auditory illusion called the ‘beau geste’ effect.” Coyotes howl both to reunite and to keep trespassers at bay. It may be in their favor that if they howl, they sound like a bigger pack than they really are. When two or three coyotes howl together, they can sound like a pack of six or ten or more, which perhaps makes them seem much more formidable to any nearby competitors or predators. There is still so much to learn about what coyotes are saying through their complex and varied vocalizations. The more we learn about the way coyotes communicate as social predators, the more we can learn about not just their species, but our own as well. For more information, visit www.urbancoyoteproject.com Summer 2016
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