Italian Greyhound & Dog News / Blog
News, items of interest, and other tidbits pertaining to Italian Greyhounds and dogs in general
Research at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh demonstrated that the facial muscles of dogs have a much higher proportion of “fast-twitch” muscle fibers than wolves, allowing dogs to more effectively communicate with their owners. According to Anne Burrows, the leader of the study, "The muscle changes suggest dogs' faces have evolved anatomically to improve their connections with people. An additional article: Study Reveals the Science Behind those Irresistible Puppy-Dog Eyes
A Greyhound took first place and a Whippet took second place! Since the Italian Greyhound is a toy breed, you can view the Italian Greyhound in the Toy Group Judging / Crufts 2022.
The Dog Aging Project, founded in 2018 and expected to run for ten years, is studying the question of canine longevity, enrolling tens of thousands of dogs in the project, to develop a thorough understanding of canine aging. As part of the study, the researchers want to look at the oldest dogs in the Pack (dogs in the study) in an attempt to identify the keys to their longevity.
This rescue made news across the USA and in other countries! NJIRT (New Jersey Initial Response Team) was called in on day six and the team, glad to collaborate with park personnel and the local SPCA, successfully reached and rescued the dog. NJIRT is available for cave, crevice, and cliff rescue throughout the Northeast and also offers training.
The Orlando International Airport (MCO) has a therapy dog program - an Italian Greyhound is the newest MCO Paw Pilot!
This study by a team of researchers at the Max Planck Institute explored whether dogs have the ability to distinguish between something done on purpose and something done by accident; basically, whether they have a component of Theory of Mind. "The dogs in our study clearly behaved differently depending on whether the actions of a human experimenter were intentional or unintentional," says Britta Schünemann, the first author of the study. "This suggests that dogs may indeed be able to identify humans' intention-in-action," adds Hannes Rakoczy from the University of Göttingen.
Researchers from Utrecht University in the Netherlands used a mobile veterinary clinic to test cats and dogs in households where residents had Covid in the past 200 days, testing for evidence of a current infection or for antibodies suggesting a past exposure to Covid. Cambridge University veterinary medicine department head Prof James Wood indicated that this study and the University of Guelph study in Canada substantiate other evidence suggesting a substantial proportion of cats and dogs may catch the virus from their owners.
Bourbon has won the Hound Group for a second time at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show (he also won in 2020).
The winner was GCHB CH Integra Maja Beach Please!
A study at the University of Arizona demonstrated that puppies are born with the ability to respond to human initiated communications; the ability for self-initiated communication with people tends to, in most puppies, develop as they interact with people; and that genetics accounts for more than 40% of the variation shown in puppies' response to human communication such as pointing gestures.
The New York State Senate approved a bill to end the retail sale of dogs, cats and rabbits in New York pet stores. The next step is for the bill to be approved by the Assembly, where it is before the Assembly Codes Committee for consideration. If the bill is approved in the Assembly, it will be sent to the Governor.
In this study of 9000 dogs conducted at the University of Helsinki, fearful dogs were much more likely to behave aggressively than non-fearful dogs. In addition, the age, breed, the company of other canines in the same household, and the owner's previous experience with dogs were associated with the degree of aggressiveness shown toward humans.
Research at the University of Auckland supported observations that dogs act jealously when their human companions interact with "rivals," but also demonstrated that dogs also exhibit jealous behaviors when they imagine, or believe, that their owner is interacting with a potential rival; in this study, a realistic looking "fake" dog.
Rake the Whippet won the 24" height division at the 2020 AKC Agility Invitational. View his winning run!
In May of 2011, a post was made on how dogs drink. This is a photograph of Bonsai, an Italian Greyhound, drinking some water - notice the position of his tongue! (Thanks to Bonsai's owner for sharing his photograph)
Chinese veterinary surgeons successfully implanted an edge-to-edge transcatheter device (ValveClamp) in the mitral valves of eight dogs with stage B1 mitral valve disease, with echo-cardiography showing a significant reduction in mitral valve regurgitation. This device needs to be further studied and tested on dogs with varying stages of mitral valve disease, but seems to have good potential in the treatment of MVD. (Note that the Abstract implies that only medical treatment is currently available, but open-heart surgery for dogs with MVD is being done by Dr. Uechi in Japan)
The first Italian Greyhound, Noi Snowballs, has had open-heart surgery for MVD (mitral valve disease), performed by Dr. Uechi and his team in Japan. The Mighty Hearts Project is a great resource for learning about the open-heart surgery, and there is a corresponding Facebook page.
Using new methods for sequencing DNA and annotation, researchers at Uppsala University and the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, built a new, more complete, dog reference genome. This will enable scientists to better understand the link between DNA and disease in dogs and humans.
A research team from Japan, led by Associate Professor Shingo Hatoya from Osaka Prefecture University, developed a new method to induce stem cell generation from blood samples taken from dogs. Through the use of this technique, the scientists hope that regenerative therapies in veterinary medicine will be advanced, so that, in the near future, veterinarians might be able to reverse what were previously consdiered to be incurable conditions in dogs.
A National Guard Member in Washington, DC Greeting an Italian Greyhound Puppy
In an analysis of ten different species by researchers at the Centre for Genomic Regulation in Barcelona, it was founds that humans, followed by ferrets and to a lesser extent cats, civets and dogs are the most susceptible animals to SARS-CoV-2 infection (ducks, rats, mice, pigs and chickens had lower, or no, susceptibility to infection). Binding affinity, codon-adaptation index, and different variants of the ACE2 receptor were factors evaluated in the study.
A study at the University of Helsinki, Finland, found differences in skin gene expression between healthy and atopic Staffordshire Bull Terriers and between dogs who ate dry or raw food. A raw food diet appeared to activate the immune system of the dogs' skin and the expression of genes that increase antioxidant production or that have anti-inflammatory effects.
Sully, who was there for the unveiling of his bronze statue at America's VetDogs' campus in Smithtown, New York, is now a facility dog at Walter Reed National Medical Center.
A study led by scientists at the Francis Crick Institute, University of Oxford, University of Vienna and archaeologists from more than ten countries found, by sequencing ancient DNA from dogs, that immediately after the Ice Age and before any other animal had been domesticated, that there were at least five different types of dogs with distinct genetic ancestries, revealing that the diversity observed between dogs originated when humans were still hunters and gatherers.
Although a small study involving only six Beagles, researchers identified key aroma compounds in dog food that seem to be the most appealing to canines (and some that are least appealing). With further testing, including additional dog breeds, results could help dog food manufacturers formulate more palatable dog food.
A study from researchers at the University of California, Davis found that mixed-breed dogs weighing more than 44 pounds as adults were at a higher risk for joint disorders if they were neutered before one year of age.
In a study published in the journal Cell Systems, scientists indicated that dogs are much "older" than we have thought and they devised a more accurate formula to calculate a dog's age that is based on chemical changes in DNA as organisms grow old.
A small study at the Konrad Lorenz Institute of Ethology demonstrated that dogs from both breed groups displayed inequity aversion, with no significant difference in the extent of negative responses to inequity or on subsequent social behaviors. But there were some differences between the breed groups. It was concluded that the results do not support the hypothesis that inequity aversion and cooperation co-evolved. There were, however, some differences displayed between the breed groups which may, according to the study authors, "indicate a history of selection, in cooperative worker breeds, for increased motivation to work with humans."
Research, involving a series of tests with dogs, at the University of Arizona demonstrated that dogs will attempt to "save" their distressed owners.
The dogs in new research by University of Alberta chemists were able to detect traces of gasoline down to one billionth of a teaspoon, 5 pL, of gasoline. Harynuk stated, "Their noses are incredibly sensitive." Consider playing scent games with your dog(s)!
Newest information, including recommendations, from the AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association) since a tiger at the Bronx Zoo in NY tested positive for Covid-19. The tiger testing positive has not altered the organization's basic recommendations (two dogs and a cat previously tested positive for Covid-19 in China).
The purpose of this study, using isotope methodology, was to determine how much wildlife is eaten by domestic cats to supplement the food provided by their owners. However, the study was unsuccessful due to an unexpectedly high variability in cat food ingredients, suggesting that some cat food manufacturers regularly change ingredient composition, even within the same flavors of cat food.
A co-author of the study stated, "We really thought this was going to be an ideal application of the isotope methodology." This was based on the assumption that cat food producers use consistent types and amounts of ingredients, but, the study found that is not the case. Even between foods of the same flavor from the same brand, the carbon and nitrogen isotopes varied widely. "In short, at the end of this study we are still ignorant about why some cats kill more wildlife than others, and we have also found we are ignorant about something else, the shifting dynamics of 'Big Pet Food.'"
A video of the judging
A video of the hound group
A research study found a high prevalence of Bartonella bacteria in tumors and tissues (but not blood samples) in dogs with hemangiosarcoma, a cancer of the blood vessels. The researchers concluded that further studies are needed to investigate whether Bartonella infection can be a cause of hemangiosarcoma and the research team plans to focus on the development of more sensitive diagnostic testing.
Veterinarians have known that some Greyhounds have a mutation that results in the slow break down of certain anesthetic drugs and potentially life-threatening and prolonged recovery periods following anesthesia (the mutation causes less of the enzyme, CYP2B11, that breaks down the drugs to be made). The mutation was also found in dogs closely related to Greyhounds, such as Italian Greyhounds, Whippets, Scottish Deerhound, and Borzoi.
A recent study has found this mutation, although to a lesser extent, in other breeds such as Golden Retrievers and Labradors. A researcher stated, "While the mutation is not that common in most breeds -- outside of greyhounds and other related breeds -- because some of these other breeds are so popular, a relatively large number of dogs in this country could be affected." Researchers are planning to create a simple cheek swab test to detect the mutation and determine an individual dog's sensitivity to the anesthetic drugs.
A Max Planck Institute study found that, when tested in same-species pairs, dogs and wolves proved equally successful and efficient at solving a problem requiring cooperation, indicating that basic cooperation abilities were present in a common ancestor of dogs and wolves.
An Emory University study that used MRI imaging demonstrated that when processing numbers of objects, dogs use a similar part of their brain as humans do. In comparison to other numerosity studies where dogs were trained, this study showed that dogs don't need to be trained to process numbers of items.
A video of Rolex the Italian Greyhound being shown in the Toy Group
A bill, the Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act (PACT), was introduced in the House this year by two Florida lawmakers, expanding on a 2010 law signed by President Barack Obama. Signed into law, this bill now makes cruelty to animals a federal crime.
The results of a study at the Max Planck Institute demonstrated that although some dog emotions can be recognized by humans from early on, the ability to reliably recognize dog emotions is primarily acquired through age and experience. In the study, the probability of adults recognizing dog emotions was higher for participants who grew up in a cultural environment with a positive attitude towards dogs, regardless of whether they owned a dog themselves.
A study from Texas A & M University offers insight on how gut bacteria of dogs interact with healthy and unhealthy GI tracts. Many treatments for canine GI diseases are currently non-specific to the disease and an increased understanding of the GI microbiome could lead to more targeted treatment options.
University of Guelph research demonstrated that when measuring out dog food, most owners tend to underestimate or overestimate the amount of food "scooped" out. According to the researchers, the "gold standard" would be to use a kitchen scale. What was not discussed, was that owners should base the amount of food on the dog's body condition (not on amounts indicated on a dog food bag) - easy to do with Italian Greyhounds :-)
Finnish scientist at the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and the University of Turku have developed a simple, effective test for blue-green algae. Using an easy to read test cassette and a sample of water, people can confirm, within ten minutes or so, whether the water contains toxins or is toxin-free and safe.
In a study published in the journal Microbiome, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania investigated the connection between a prescription diet, gut microbiomes, and entry into inflammatory disease remission in pet dogs receiving treatment, discovering key features of the microbiome and associated metabolic products that appeared only in dogs that entered disease remission.
According to new research, based on the analysis of magnetic resonance imaging scans of 33 dog breeds, dog brain structure varies across breeds, is correlated with specific behavior and that, by selectively breeding for certain behaviors, humans have shaped the brains of dogs.
Check out the new dog cross breeds! (Thanks to Italian Greyhound and General Dog Stuff for posting on Facebook).
This investigation, which began in July 2018, is focused on reports of Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM) in dogs eating certain dog foods containing high amounts of peas, lentils, or other legumes and/or potatoes. This report is significant because of the information it contains including case reports and dog food brands most frequently name in reported cases of DCM. No conclusions have been made and certainly not all dogs eating the implicated foods have developed DCM, but it is good information to have when choosing and evaluating your dog's diet.
Research comparing the anatomy and behavior of dogs and wolves found that the facial musculature of both species was similar, except for above the eyes, with dogs having a small muscle which allows them to raise their inner eyebrow and to communicate better with humans.
According to the lead author of the study, "The evidence is compelling that dogs developed a muscle to raise the inner eyebrow after they were domesticated from wolves. We also studied dogs' and wolves' behavior, and when exposed to a human for two minutes, dogs raised their inner eyebrows more and at higher intensities than wolves."
Article on the same research with a photograph of sight hounds!
This meta-analysis study by Oregon State University Researchers confirmed that the removal of canine cancerous tumors with microscopically complete surgical margins significantly reduced the risk of recurrence in comparison to cases where the cancer was incompletely excised.
Proposed legislation in NY by Senator Michael Gianaris (D-District 12) and Assembly Woman Linda Rosenthal (D-District 67) would, if passed and signed into law, ban pet stores from selling dogs, cats and rabbits. Such stores would, instead, be encouraged to develop partnerships with animal shelters and rescue organizations to promote animals in need of adoption. If this legislation becomes law, NY would be the third state to institute such a ban, following California and Maryland.
The results of this Vetmeduni Vienna study, demonstrated that when dogs and wolves are socialized with humans from a young age and kept in similar environmental conditions, that both work successfully with humans, although in very different ways. These differences in how they cooperate with people explains why dogs make the better pet.
Click on the link for a video of the finals.
In a study by Daniel Horschler, a member of the University of Arizona's Canine Cognition Center, larger dogs demonstrated better short-term memory and self-control than smaller dogs (measured by locating a treat hidden beneath one of two cups and leaving, rather than taking, a treat placed in front of them). Canine brain size was not, however, associated with all types of intelligence such as a dog's performance on tests of social intelligence, which was measured by testing each dog's ability to follow human pointing gestures, or with a dog's inferential and physical reasoning ability.
The AKC Museum of the Dog
The AKC Museum of the Dog is returning to NYC and is scheduled to open in the beginning of February. Located on Park Avenue, the museum will feature two floors of artwork and interactive exhibits.
This University of Lincoln project demonstrated that training can significantly improve the ability of children and adults to correctly identify and interpret dog signalling communication which can lead to better judgment on when to, and not to, interact with a dog.
In a study by researchers at the DogStudies lab at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, it was demonstrated that dogs possess some "metacognitive" abilities - they demonstrated an awareness of when they did not have enough information to solve a problem and actively sought more information, in this case, looking through a gap before deciding which fence to look behind for a hidded treat.
This study by the Morris Animal Foundation concluded that a vaccine used to prevent dogs from contracting the deadly, parasitic disease canine leishmaniasis can also be used to treat infected dogs. Canine leishmaniasis is caused by the parasite Leishmania infantum and is usually transmitted through sand fly bites in tropical countries. One ot he breeds most likely to have the disease in North America, and the breed primarily used in this study, is the Foxhound - it is believed many Foxhounds in North America were born with CanL due to the practice of breeding with imported hounds from endemic areas.
The proposed research is to validate an alternative approach for bioequvalence studies for certain animal drugs that does not require that dogs be euthanized as part of the study and would provide for the adoption of the dogs post study. (The title of the article is not quite accurate as dogs would be used).
Sixty-nine percent of Floridians voted to pass Amendment 13 which bans Greyhound racing in Florida by 2020. The passage of this amendment effectively shuts down Greyhound racing at eleven locations in Florida. Grey2K USA had a huge role in this and there is a Timeline to Florida Victory on their website.
A dog's physical characteristics and temperament are often considered when evaluating whether a dog will be a good candidate for job training, but cognition has received much less focus. By evaluating a dog's cognitive abilities, Evan MacLean, director of the Arizona Canine Cognition Center at the University of Arizona, is exploring ways to identify the best dogs for different jobs (recognizing that different jobs require different cognitive skills) before they start the long and expensive training process.
Proucts in the isoxazoline class include Braveto, Nexgard, Simparica, and Credelio, with affects from the medication including muscle tremors, ataxia, and seizures.
In collaboration with Dogs Trust and University of Liverpool animal behavior researchers, the Virtual Engineering Center at the University has created, and plans to expand on, a virtual reality experience (simulation) in which people can approach and interact with a dog displaying various signs of aggression. The study demonstrates how immersive experiences can be used as valuable educational tools.
Researchers from Arizona State University used DNA testing to genotype 900 shelter dogs, finding a large genetic diversity in the dogs. When comparing shelter assigned breeds with the obtained genetic profiles, researchers found shelter accuracy to be 67%, with the accuracy only 10% when staff identified more than one breed for a specific dog. Due to behavioral diversity even within single breeds, the researchers are advocating for the importance of behavioral assessments instead of breed labels. An important goal of the Canine Science Collaboratory at Arizona State University is to "design and validate a behavioral assessment that would provide insight into how dog behavior in a shelter translates to behavior in a home." This approach, they believe, would be more informative than breed designations and could positively benefit shelter dogs.
A wallpainting in Cordoba, Spain to encourage respect for, and adoption of, Galgos. The painting is done by Sake Ink.
This study, at Oregon State University, evaluated, and compared, search and rescue dogs and pet dogs who were presented with a problem solving task. According to Brubaker, the lead study author, search and rescue dog owners might be more effective at communicating task-directed goals to their dogs.
A video about how Dr. Gregory Berns, founder of The Dog Project, has trained dogs to go into MRI machines so that he can determine how they think and feel.
A chart, from The Canine Centre in the UK, showing the spectrum of a canine's vision compared to the human vision spectrum
Tease, the Whippet, Wins Best in Show at Crufts, held in Birmingham, UK
In a study by Kurunthachalam Kannan and colleagues, the exposure of dogs and cats to parabens in commercially available pet food was examined, with the animals' urine analyzed for the substances. Methyl paraben and the metabolite 4-hydroxybenzoic acid (4-HB) were the most abundant chemicals found in both pet food and urine, with dry food contained higher levels of parabens and their metabolites than wet food. In addition, paraben concentrations were higher in cat food than in dog food. After the urine analysis, the cumulative exposure intake for the dogs and cats was calculated and, byy comparing the calculations, the researchers concluded that the cats' exposure to parabens is primarily through diet, but that dogs are exposed to other sources of parabens besides food. This is reportedly the first time that the occurrence of paraben substances have been reported in pet food and urine in the U.S.
Previous studies on communicating with dogs suggested that talking in "dog-talk" (similar to "baby-talk") improved engagement with puppies, but not with adult dogs. However, in this study at the University of York, which used humans directly speaking to dogs instead of speech being broadcast over speakers, adult dogs preferred to interact with people who used dog-directed speech with dog-related content than with people using adult-directed speech with no dog-related content.
In a study by Dr. Juliane Bräuer. it was demonstrated that dogs have a mental representation of an item that they are tracking, evidenced by their behavior if the item, in this case a toy, used to create the scent trail is replaced by a different item, in this case, a different toy, at the end of the trail.
In a study by cognitive biologists from Vetmeduni Vienna, computer interaction is proposed for providing mental training, challenge, and problem-solving opportunities to older dogs.
This trial will assess the effectiveness of a vaccine, developed by Stephen Johnson at Arizona State University, in preventing any type of cancer in dogs.
This study, reportedly the first to categorize dog treats and their nutrient profiles, indicates that commercially available dog treats contain a range of undefined (or not precisely defined) ingredients, including sugars, and often exceed the recommended daily energy allowance for treats.
These are the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) vaccination recommendations revised for 2017. The biggest change is the recognition of the usefulness of antibody testing (titer testing) in determining immunity to canine distempter virus (CDV), parvovirus (CPV), and canine adenovirus (CAV). Parvinfluenza is indicated as an optional core vaccination (note the+/-) and the coronavirus vaccination continues to be unrecommended. A "minimal" vaccination protocol is offered by Dr. Jean Dodd's.
A video from the National Dog Show in Philadelphia, PA.
Entrepreneur Keaton from Drumroll Studios
"Keaton decided he doesn't get enough Bacon so he started a business so he can have it with every meal."
Hounds made from recycled fabric. Finished hounds are posted on the Haberdash Hounds website and viewers post that they are purchasing.
Research at Barnard College confirmed previous evidence that when a sniff test of self-recognition (STSR) is used (as opposed to a visual mirror test) that dogs do demonstrate self-awareness. The significant evidence of self-awareness in dogs when an STSR test is used indicates that this ability is not unique to "great apes, humans and a few other animals," but that the indication of it depends on the methodology used by researchers to verify it.
The Cornell Animal Health Diagnostic Center provides current information on the status of the dog flu. Regarding canine influenza vaccines, Dr. Carney (Community Practice Service at Cornell) is not a "big proponent of using the canine influenza vaccine unless the patient is at high risk which would be dogs participating in dog shows or other events with a high chance of mixing of dogs from various geographic areas." He did indicate that avoiding such events would be the best option.
Hokkaido University professor, Satoru Konnai, and his colleagues in Japan developed a chimeric anti-PD-L1 antibody that induced immune responses and tumor regression in dogs with malignant cancers, an important development for cancers that cannot be treated with existing therapies.
A study by a team of interdisciplinary researchers, and published in Science Advances, identified canine genetic changes that are linked to their human-focused social behaviors (the study also suggests that there is a common genetic basis for hyper-social behavior in both dogs and people). Further, during the process of canine domestication, dogs might have been selected for their tendency to seek human companionship, not for a set of cognitive skills such as the ability to discern gesture and voice.
By using a technique developed by UC Davis oral surgeons to regrow canine jaw bones, UC Davis orthopedic surgeons are using a bone morphogenetic protein to repair non-union fractures in canine legs that failed to heal properly with other techniques.
In a research study at the University of Veterinary Medicine in Vienna, both wolves and dogs refused to cooperate in an experiment when only their canine partner got a treat or they themselves received a lower quality reward. The dogs' and wolves' rank within the pack was related to the point where they stopped cooperating.
Given that the inequity behavior is equally strong in wolves and dogs, it is likely to be a behavior inherited from a common ancestor - it was previously believed to be from domestication.
Trick or Treat: Conniving Behavior Discovered in Dogs - New link since posting
An interesting study at the University of Zurich in which dogs decide which humans to lead to which boxes in order to receive favored treats.
In a study published in Cell Reports, researchers used gene sequences from 161 dog breeds to create a evolutionary dog tree that provides evidence that dogs traveled with humans across the Bering land bridge and furthers understanding of the "genetic backstory" of dogs.
A new test procedure, used by cognitive biologists from the Messerli Research Institute of the University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna, demonstrated that in addition to being able to identify whether a human has an eye on a food source and that, therefore, the human knows where the food has been hidden, dogs are also capable of applying this knowledge and correctly interpreting human cues to find food that is not visible to them. The ability to the perspective of another is an important component of social intelligence.
Researchers at the Arizona Canine Cognition Center found that dogs and two-year-old children demonstrate similar patterns of social intelligence - much more similar than between human children and chimpanzees.
Crocheted Italian Greyhounds!
(Handmade and available on Etsy)
This is a voluntary recall due to potential contamination with the drug pentobarbital in the company's Hunk of Beef product for dogs and cats. This is an important recall - reportedly five illnesses and the death of one dog!
This study, using a more complex task than a previous study, confirmed the pro-social behavior of dogs via their willingness to share food with other dogs.
Pet Fooled is a documentary film by Kohl Harrington exploring the pet food industry. The link above includes a video interview of Kohl Harrington by veterinarian Karen Becker, an article discussing the film, and links for viewing the film - currently, it costs $4.99 to view (I would prefer it to be viewed for free, with donations requested, but optional).
This study demonstrated that people tend to talk to dogs of all ages in the same manner that they speak to human babies - slower and with a higher tone - and that puppies responded most readily to this dog-directed speech.
BPA is used to line metal food containers, including dog food cans. This study showed a significant increase in BPA levels in dogs fed canned food for two weeks. PBA cans are only available from the canning industry in small sizes (to 5.5 ounces). Therefore, although some respected sources recommend wet dog food over dry dog food, the use of BPA in the cans is something that should be accessed in choosing dog food.
This article is about cat whiskers, but dogs use their whiskers in a similar, although less pronounced, fashion.
In a study at Staffordshire University children were able to distinguish between happy, angry and frightened dogs, but, although the children were less likely to approach an angry dog, there was no difference in their inclination to approach a happy or frightened dog.
In an interesting study Wolves proved to be more prone to take risks than dogs - wolves chose the risky option in 80% of trials, whereas dogs only did so in 58% of trials.
Results of this study by Attila Andics et al. reports that dogs have the ability to distinguish vocabulary words and the intonation of human speech. A similar study is linked under 1/26/16.
The FDA is continuing to investigate the causes of illness and death associated with the consumption of chicken, duck, and sweet potato jerky treats, primarily imported from China. Continue to avoid feeding these products to your dog(s) or cat(s).
An interesting article and table of state laws and regulations addressing the minimum age at which a puppy can be sold and who the laws/regulations apply to.
This cute Italian Greyhound raincoat is made by Cane & Co (out-of-business since posting).
Dog in this study, who were presented with pairings of images and sounds that conveyed different combinations of positive and negative emotional expressions in humans and dogs, demonstrated the "ability to integrate two different sources of sensory information into a coherent perception of emotion in both humans and dogs.” According to a researcher from the University of Lincoln’s School of Psychology, “To do so requires a system of internal categorization of emotional states. This cognitive ability has until now only been evidenced in primates and the capacity to do this across species only seen in humans.”
This vest for small dogs is designed to offer protection from coyotes and is available at Coyote Vest.
According to Dinets' overview, there are four to five wild species of Canis in North America. These include the well-known grey wolf and coyote, a secondary wild population of the domestic dog known as the Carolina dog, plus a few populations of hybrid origin with different proportions of wolf and coyote genes. Two of these hybrid populations, the red wolf of the eastern U.S. and the Algonquin wolf--also known as the Eastern or timber wolf--of southeastern Canada, have already evolved into full species.
The overview also indicates that domestic dogs are descendants of two interbred species: a small extinct wild dog of Asia and the grey wolf. Different breeds have different proportions of wolf blood, which can explain personality and behavioral differences.
A test that measures an animal's immune response to the rabies virus has been modified by scientists, a change that will cost pet owners less money and may help reduce the number of yearly vaccines for pets.
This study, conducted at the Dog Project at Emory University, demonstrated that dogs have neural machinery dedicated to face processing. According to the senior researcher, this ability is hard-wired in dogs and may help explain their extreme sensitivity to human social cues.
The Center for Pet Safety released testing results for crates and carriers used for transportation in vehicles. Not all crates/carriers perform admirably!
This study utilized images of adult dogs placing between first and fifth in their class, with the research concluding that 74% of the dogs were in ideal condition, and 26% were overweight.
Researchers at the Vetmeduni Vienna Clever Dog Lab, found that although dogs are able to follow human gaze to objects such as food or toys, they do not tend to do so for the comparatively simpler task of following gaze into distant space.
Three varieties of these chews have been recalled due to metal contamination.
An excellent article on heartworm disease and prevention by Dr. Jean Dodds, including the recommended preventative for sight hounds (Interceptor), and what to avoid with dogs who are epileptic or seizure prone, have autoimmune disease, or have thyroid or liver conditions.
Use a Lint Roller to Check for Ticks (link no longer available)
A lint roller provides an easy way to check for, and remove unattached ticks, from your dog's fur.
A balanced, CBS News article on the role of affiliative eye contact between a person and his/her dog and attachment.
Midwest Canine Influenza Outbreak Caused by New Strain of Virus (link no longer available)
The canine influenza outbreak in the Midwest is being attributed to an Asian strain of the virus, H3N2, not H3N8 as had been assumed, and it is not known whether the currently available canine influenza vaccination offers any protection against this strain of the virus. This should be taken into account, as should your geographic location, your dog's lifestyle, and associated vaccination risks.
One ingredient, easy to make dog treats. The degree of chewiness or hardness is your choice.
Fun video and you can view the making of it here.
This brief article discusses coyote behavior that you might observe while they are selecting and protecting dens, and the best approach to take in order to keep your dog safe.
A proposed bill by a New York state senator and a New York City council woman would be the first bill of its kind in the nation to give a tax credit for adopting a homeless animal. On the surface, this might seem to be a good idea, but perhaps not if it encourages adoption by a new owner unable to foot the cost of caring financially for the adopted animal.
A study demonstrating that dogs can tell the difference between happy and angry human faces represents, according to the researches, the first solid evidence that an animal other than humans can discriminate between emotional expressions in another species.
As reported by Humane Watch, only about 1% of the budget of the Humane Society of the United States goes to local pet shelters, and the organization doesn’t operate any shelters of its own. View the map to learn how much money went to shelters in your state.
John McGlone, a pet owner and professor at Texas Tech University who specializes in animal welfare and behavior, tested and developed a product called Stop That used to stop barking or similar unwanted behavior in dogs. Stop That is sprayed at the dog, similar to using a squirt bottle, but in tests is more effective than water. According to McGlone, "It's best used as a training tool rather than a circus act to stop animals from doing what they're doing." He also states, "One of the most difficult problems is that dogs bark a lot, and it's one of the top reasons they are given back to shelters or pounds. . . there are quite a few pet owners relieved to be able to stop their pets' bad behavior and not have to resort to giving them up, thanks to Stop That."
This technology, which is used remotely, is being used most beneficially with working dogs, but could be used with "pet only" dogs also.
The Center for Pet Safety and their top rated dog car harness is featured in this video.
A UK study found signs of canine behavioral distress in a study involving the use of e-collars in training.
A zoologist addresses this question in a short article.
Two significant risk factors associated with painful neurological diseases in the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel have been identified. These "skull shape" findings have the potential to help in the elimination of these conditions in toy dog breeds and could be used in breeding guidelines.
Dogs: Their Secret Lives Channel 4 Documentary (link no longer available)
Please be aware of reports regarding the use of Triflexis. I do not recommend using any flea preventative, including the spot-on ones, without extreme consideration and caution and would try natural products first.
In this experimental test, dogs, not surprisingly, demonstrate jealousy.
The Safety Harness Crash Test Protocol and Rating system provides essential guidelines for pet product manufacturers and follows the 2013 Harness Crash-worthiness Study conducted by Center for Pet Safety. The CPS Certification program is a voluntary program, but pet product manufacturers are encouraged to participate in order to qualify for a Safety-Certified Seal on their product packaging.
A blog spot website on the dangers of mushroom toxicity in dogs - includes alerts, precautions, and information on aggressive treatment.
Early tests performed on about fifty puppies in seven states for Aviamax, a Grand Forks-based company, have resulted in a ninety percent cure rate for canine parvovirus. ParvoOne is an antibody-based treatment that is harvested from the yokes of goose eggs. Aviamax plans to sell ParvoOne for seventy-five dollars per dose, much less than the cost for currently available parvo treatment.
Petco Removing All Dog and Cat Treats Made in China From Store Shelves - Link no longer available
Since this will occur over many months, continue to check labels!
An NBC article on the continuing illnesses linked to pet jerky treats, primarily those imported from China.
CBS New York reports on the prevalence of dogs being stolen, from the street, cars, stores, and backyards, and then quickly sold for a profit.
Pet Food to be Tested for Contaminants - Link no longer available
The Association for Truth in Pet Food, stating that current testing by government and industry is inadequate, announced plans to raise at least $10,000 to test cat and dog food for "dangerous" contaminants.
The Health Ranger, editor of Natural News, has found lead, mercury and cadmium in tested pet treats. Be aware of this situation and carefully choose the treats you give to your dog (or other pet companions).
Is your dog telling you that he is relaxed or perhaps scared or fearful? This fun, short video will help you begin to understand your dog's communication.
A brain-imaging study concluded that an area of the canine brain associated with reward responds more strongly to the scents of familiar humans than it does to the scents of other humans, or even to those of familiar dogs.
This directory allows you to view the chemicals in flea and tick products and the risk level that they present to your dog. There is a handy "Filter by Risk Level" option in the right-side column.
Center for Pet Safety Product Alert - Double Dentals Dog Toy
Do not purchase, or allow your dog to have access to, any Double Dentals dog toys. At least some versions of this toy contain a woven nylon fabric that is prone to unraveling. In the case of one dog, the nylon fabric unraveled into one long string which was ingested and led to the dog's death.
A Greyhound sculpture by bronz sculptor, Gill Parker.
A good, short article on why choosing to donate to the Humane Society of the United States is NOT a good idea.
An interesting article written after a veterinarian and her dog narrowly escaped being hit by a vehicle.
Nationwide Recall of Veterinary 1/2cc U-40 Insulin Syringes Due to Mismarked Syringe Barrels (link no longer available)
Diabetic pet owners - please take notice.
This recall applies to Med-Vet International syringes and is important since mislabeled syringes will result in pets being administered the incorrect amount of insulin.
This situation can be reversed with the administration of calcium. Be sure that your veterinarian is aware of the possibility of a dangerous increase of potassium during anesthesia.
A Russian billionaire backs a dog shelter in a last-ditch effort to save stray dogs before the opening of the Olympics.
Many people are disheartened by reports of stray dogs in Sochi being killed in preparation for the Winter Olympics. This CNN video reports on that concern.
Pet Mystery Deaths (Jerky Treats)
The American Veterinary Medical Association rejected a resolution that would have discouraged feeding jerky products to pets until further evidence about safety is available; the reason for the rejection: lack of sufficient, scientific evidence. The following is from the article, "The AVMA, like the FDA, says that while it’s clear animals who’ve eaten treats have become ill or died, there’s no conclusive proof of the cause." Keep your dog safe and do not feed jerky products!
This UK based study used a questionnaire to investigate dog aggression towards people, with an emphasis on situational aggression and risk factors. The original abstract is here.
This book (release date 1/7/14), written by Veterinarian Behaviorists for the public, explains dog behavior and how to prevent or alter the behaviors that are unwanted.
When magnetic field conditions are calm, dogs prefer to eliminate with their bodies aligned along the magnetic north-south axis.
Italian Greyhound in Puppy Bowl Line-Up (link no longer available)
An Italian Greyhound from ROMP Italian Greyhound Rescue is in the Animal Planet Puppy Bowl Line-Up for 2014. Taser is featured as number 34 on the Animal Planet website.
Jerky Treat Freedom of Information Request - New link since posting
A short article indicating that the FDA was not truthful in disclosing information regarding level of drugs found in jerky treats.
A really good video of a Greyhound running.
Do you want to feed your dog food with the only or primary protein source being hydrolyzed poultry by-products aggregate (feather meal)? Read this article before deciding.
This short video about Dog TV features two Italian Greyhounds - check them out!
This video demonstrates why it is not a good practice to leave dogs in parked cars.
Hounds of Bath - Etsy site no longer active; designer has a Facebook page
Creative sighthound sculptures made from wire and pages of old books. View and enjoy, or purchase (custom orders available).
Heartworm Preventative Recall - Link no longer available
Six lots of Iverhart Plus Flavored Chewables by Virbac were voluntarily recalled.
One person's take on the good and bad of sharing your life with an Italian Greyhound.
If passed, this bill will "require all breeders who sell more than 50 dogs annually -- whether through pet stores or online -- to undergo inspections and meet U.S. Department of Agriculture standards for caring for the dogs. The licensing and inspection requirements in the current law do not apply to online sellers." For information on puppy mills and choosing a reputable breeder, go to Where to Get an IG within Italian Greyhound Place's website.
Dog Food Stamps - the Dog Food Stamp program has been discontinued
With the goal of enabling more dogs to stay in their homes as opposed to going to shelters, this program will provide free, monthly delivery of pet food to qualifying applicants.
Dr. Robb Speaks (following his arrest)
This is an interesting case because Dr. Robb is against over-vaccinating pets. Although his arrest focuses on the fact that he administered half-doses of a vaccination (and whether all his clients knew that or not), it raises awareness of t...he risks involved with over-vaccination. This is perhaps especially important for toy breeds such as our Italian Greyhounds. Rabies is the only state mandated vaccination, so research the risks/benefits of any vaccination and consider titering instead of re-vaccinating - a following News 12 segment.
This study demonstrates that dogs are able to recognize other dogs visually.
An interesting article on bully sticks based on a study published this month by researchers at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University and the University of Guelph.
Common Ways for Dogs to be Stolen - original link not available; new one added
The number of stolen dogs has increased, and this article highlights the top five scenarios as well as why thieves steal dogs.
This article, by Dr. Becker, provides excellent information on fish and fish meal as a source of protein for dogs and cats. If your dog food contains fish or fish meal, or you plan of feeding this protein source, read this article!
According to the American Kennel Club, there has been an increase in stolen dogs. Do all you can to keep your dog, or dogs, safe!
Italian Greyhound Clothing Tutorials (link no longer available)
If you want to try making coats or coveralls for your Italian Greyhound, this website will get you started. With short fur and a low fat to muscle mass ratio, these guys need to be dressed for the weather!
A new website featuring architect designed, unique, dog structures with build-it-yourself blueprints.
Theresa Strader, who founded National Mill Dog Rescue in honor of Lily, a seven-year old puppy mill dog, has been chosen by People Magazine as a "Hero Among Us." This past October, I contacted National Mill Dog Rescue regarding two Italian Greyhounds in Missouri who were rescued from a back-yard-breeding facility by a woman who needed assistance with them (somewhere for them to go, and vet care). Within hours, I heard from Theresa and within a few days, she retrieved both dogs and brought them to Colorado into the care of National Mill Dog Rescue. A "Hero Among Us!" Theresa is featured in the November 19th issue of People Magazine.
Initially, this procedure will not be commonly available in private veterinarian practices, but the article contains good information to be aware of.
Could irradiation and glycerin be the reason for the illnesses and deaths?
When mounted to the top of a fence, this product stops coyotes and other animals from scaling the fence (the fence does need to be sufficiently high for the animal to not clear the fence without grabbing the top).
Now, in addition to chicken jerky treats, sweet potato treats made in China have been linked to illness in dogs. Do not allow your dog to eat any treats made in China. When shopping, check the bag carefully for "made in China."
Nature's Variety has Issued a Voluntary Recall - Link not available since posting
Prairie Beef Meal & Barley Medley Kibble for Dogs by Nature's Variety is not contaminated, but is not remaining fresh for the product's shelf life.
Bronze Greyhounds in England
Many dogs do not like fireworks and, along with many other animals, might experience fear and confusion, sometimes while they are home alone. Unfortunately, it is not unusual for dogs, frightened by fireworks, to run away. Complicating matters, fireworks tend to go off for a few days prior to the 4th of July, making it difficult to know when your dog might be subjected to the noise of them. Here are some suggestions:
Be mindful of how acute a dog's hearing is, and how loud fireworks are to them.
Even if you have a fenced yard and tend to allow your dog to be outside unsupervised, do not do so on, and for a few days prior to, July 4th. A scared dog is more apt to escape from a confined area.
Be aware that even a dog who has not previously reacted to fireworks, could attempt to take off due to them, especially if the sound is close to their location.
If possible, stay with your dog during fireworks. Although the noise might still frighten him, your presence will likely be comforting to your dog.
If your dog has an area inside that he goes to in order to feel safe, make sure that he has access to it.
Normal household noise such as that from a television show or music can help to blunt the sound of fireworks.
If a firework display is visible from your home, keep window coverings closed while the fireworks are going off.
Items such as a thundershirt or dog appeasing pheromones can also be utilized. (No thundershirt? - try wrapping your dog snuggly in a towel).
Although this should always be the case, make sure that your dog has an identification tag on.
Dog and cats traveling by car in NJ need to be buckled in with harnesses or in a buckled down crate. If not, the driver can be fined. Whether or not you agree with the law, pets are safer when buckled and so are the human passengers. Information on car restraints can be found here.
Quite a contrast to what has been circulating:
President of the NJASPCA Explains Unrestrained Animal Law in this Audio
Check the prevalence of parasites such as heartworm and ticks throughout the USA, and by state and county.
This new CBS television, which is currently filming in Manhattan, will begin airing later this month.
This sculpture was made by Chris Williams
Metal Sighthound Statues, Stockton UK