Monday, June 30, 2014

Rare Breed Monday: Afghan Hound

Image from
The Afghan Hound comes from Afghanistan and is believed to be one of the oldest dog breeds still in existence. The breed developed in Afghanistan's countryside and was discovered by the Western world in the 19th century. 

There are two distinct versions of the Afghan Hound. One developed in the southern and western desert regions of Afghanistan, and the other in the north. The dogs from the desert regions tend to be light in color and have a sparse coat. The dogs from the north are more compact, often darker, and have a thicker coat.

There were Afghan Hounds in the Western World before WW1, but during the war these dogs went extinct. The breed as we know it today stems back to 1920, when a group were brought to Scotland from Pakistan. The first dogs in the USA entered the country in 1926.

Afghan Hounds are known for being dignified, aloof, and highly individual. They are wonderful members of the family, but often don't go along well with small animals that can look like prey. These dogs require a lot of exercise and grooming. They are very fast, sure-footed, and agile, and they have the stamina to run for a long time. You aren't likely to run an Afghan tired.

Many Afghans participate in agility or lure coursing. They are also popular as therapy dogs.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Friday, June 27, 2014

No connection between ice and bloat in dogs

While there might be reasons you don't want to give your dog ice cubs - such as damaging fragile teeth - ice causing bloat is a myth. Bloat is a real and dangerous condition, but it isn't caused by ice, even if the day is hot.

Bloat comes from a pet eating or drinking too quickly, sucking in air with their food or water. It can also be caused by a pet eating or drinking quickly and frolicking around afterwards, sucking air into the stomach.

If bloat happens, the pet needs to see a vet immediately. The dog or cat probably needs emergency surgery to survive.

Luckily, this dangerous malady is easy to prevent. If you know that your dog eats quickly, divide the food into several smaller portions during the day instead of one or two large meals. Also, if your pet drinks or eats quickly, they should avoid play and exercise for at least an hour.

If your dog is overheated on a hot day, give them small portions of water and cool them down through spraying them with cool water. It might seem heartless to portion out the water, but gulping down large amounts quickly can have severe consequences.

So, what about the ice?

If a dog gulps down ice water on a hot day and develops bloat, it's easy to imagine a connection between the ice and the illness. The result would be exactly the same with gulping down water without ice. Ice does not cause bloat. Eating or drinking too quickly causes bloat.

Many dogs appreciate ice cubes. If you want to flavor the ice with something, fresh juice or berries are the best. Artificial flavorings might contain xylitol, which is poisonous to dogs. Besides pure ice, small cubes of frozen greek yogurt mixed with peanut butter, or plain frozen pumpkin puree make great treats for a balmy day.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Innovative adopting program in northern Virginia

Many shelters are bursting with cats and dogs, and in this stressful environment it can be hard for a dog to show potential adopters how wonderful they really are. Many suffer shelter depression, and show abnormal behaviors they never would if they were at home.

An animal shelter in Northern Virginia recently implemented a new take on the problem. Dogs at the Fairfax County Animal Shelter get to go on short-term adventures called the "Power Hour."

The dogs are taken out for a fun outing by screened volunteers. It can be anything from hiking to eating ice cream. During the outing, they wear "adopt me" vests, showing anyone in the area that this great dog could be theirs.

The Power Hour cannot take place in an overwhelming environment such as a school or a dog park, and the volunteers are required to take photos and videos that can be used to spread the word about the dog.

Here is Lady, eating ice cream for the first time.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Five health benefits of having pets

Pets are great company and become a part of the family, but our animal friends have even more benefits. Here is a list with five important bonuses for human health.

Pets make us move more

The average dog owner moves more than the average person without a dog. Daily walks or other forms of exercising with a dog helps us stay in shape and staves off a number of health problems.

Pets reduce stress

Pets know when we need them, and they're always there for us. If anyone doubts the benefit, consider the large number of therapy dogs and emotional support dogs. Pets even help people cope with severe problems such as post traumatic stress disorder. Pet owners are known to adapt better to stressful situations than people without pets.

Pets give strong and healthy hearts

Cats, dogs, and other pets help improve heart health. The American Heart Association reports that pets help reduce the risks of cardiovascular diseases. They also help lower cholesterol.

Pets protect against allergies

This might sound counter-intuitive since many people are allergic to cats and dogs. However, children being exposed to pet dander early in life develop a protection against future allergies. A child  under the age of one who is exposed to two or more cats or dogs has a significantly less risk of developing allergies as they grow up.

Pets help us make friends

Walking with a dog leads to more conversations with other people, which in turn battles loneliness and isolation. Young adults with pets are more connected to their communities and relationships. Older persons with pets have more vivid social lives.

Besides being great company, what do you think is the biggest benefit of your pet?

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

PlexiDor Pet Doors visited UKC Premiere in Kalamazoo

The UKC - United Kennel Club - is the largest all breed performance dog registry in the world, and one of the oldest. The organization was founded in 1898 and registers dogs from all 50 US states and 25 foreign nations. 

A part of the club's mission is to provide a venue where all dogs can participate. They have a purebred dog registry, but also a program for mixed breed dogs, purebred dogs with something that disqualifies them from the breed standard, and purebred dogs that doesn't have a registered pedigree.  The UKC organizes agility trials, dock jumping, lure coursing, obedience trials, and much more.

PlexiDor Pet Doors visit the Premiere event every year, this is one of the largest dog shows in the USA, and we give away 10 doors. Many visitors stop by to tell us what they think of the doors, and others come to pick up their prize. This year is the first when the same dog has won two doors.

This is Courage, who won a PlexiDor dog door for Rally National Champion:

Lee Anne Layman won in 2011 and stopped by to tell us that she loves her door.

Toby has a complicated name, so we'll just call him Toby. He is the first dog to win two doors at a show. His proud owners are Kim Charles and Bruce Winter.

Have you visited one of these shows? Did you like it?

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Monday, June 23, 2014

Rare Breed Monday: Central Asian Shepherd Dog

Image from
The Central Asian Shepherd Dog is one of the oldest breeds in history, and artifacts have been dated to 5,000 years ago. The breed belongs to a group created by climate, nature, and civilizations long since lost, and they are still often used by nomadic tribes to guard family and transportation.

In the 1920s Russia created a breed standard, and this resulted in a modern version of the breed, often called Central Asian Ovcharka. This complicates things as there are differences between the Central Asian Ovcharka and representatives of the native Asian Shepherd Dogs that can still be found through Asia. Nowadays, many interbreed the versions, attempting preserve the best qualities in both.

Central Asian Shepherd Dogs bond closely with their humans, and they excel as therapy dogs, ranch dogs, and at protecting the family. They are known for being independent, strong, brave, and responsible. They are generally gentle with children and other animals, and they learn quickly.

These dogs require little grooming, but once a year they shed so much the period is called the "Fur Storm." They are very healthy with an average life span of 17 years.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Friday, June 20, 2014

Take your dog to work day

Bonnie inspects sliding tracks and points out that
they should be white since the door is white.
Today is the 16th annual "Take Your Dog to Work" day in the USA and many pet lovers bring their furry friends to workplaces all around the country. The event was started by Pet Sitters International in 1999, and the first year less than 300 businesses participated. This year, over 300,000 visitors have looked at the website.

Whether bringing a dog to work is a good idea or not depends on the workplace, of course. Some environments can be dangerous, but for someone working in an office, bringing a dog to work comes with benefits. Pets lower blood pressure, cheer people up, make a great subject of discussion, and inspire to go for walks.

Some companies encourage bringing pets all around the year, reasoning it makes employees healthier and calmer, which in turns boosts productivity.

What do you think? Is pets in the workplace a good idea? Do you bring yours? Would you bring a pet if you could?

~ Maria Sadowski ~

10 unique dog breeds (5-1)

Welcome to part two of the list of unique dog breeds. Here are numbers 5 to 1 of rare breeds with particularly interesting skills, qualities, or history.

5. Sicilian dogs hunt with ferrets

The Cirneco dell’Etna is a Sicilian breed that has been present in Italy for at least 2,500 years. The dogs were traditionally used to hunt together with a ferret. The dog would seek out rabbits, and the ferret would flush them out.

The Cirneco dell’Etna is a tough breed, used to work under adverse conditions on rugged terrain formed by volcanic lava. They can withstand the heat for hours without food and water.

They are strong and independent, but friendly with people. Like all intelligent breeds they grow bored easily and need something to do.

4. Dogs that blush

The Egyptian Pharaoh Hound comes from Malta, and the breed is the national dog of the island. These are the only dogs who blush when they are excited; they get a rosy hue on the nose and ears.

Some scientists believe the breed is related to Egyptian dogs, reaching back at least to the year 3,000 BC. There are many Egyptian artifacts and writings that show a dog very similar to the Pharaoh Hound, and according to this theory the dogs traveled from Egypt to Malta with the Phoenicians.

These dogs are fast, powerful, and graceful. They are intelligent and naturally well-behaved, but they like to give chase and they are marvelous jumpers. If they sense something interesting, they can make their way out of the most well fenced yard, and they probably blush when they are discovered.

3. Dog that hunts jaguars

Fila Brasileiro, or the Brasilian Mastiff, is a very large working dog breed from Brazil known for its absolute dislike of strangers.

Within the family they are loving and loyal to a fault, patient with children, and will bond with other pets. However, a poorly socialized Fila Brasileiro will be extremely suspicious towards strangers and it is very important that the puppies get to meet many different people in positive situations. With this breed the saying that the owner makes the dog is truer than ever; the right owner will get a wonderful and devoted companion.

In the past, these dogs have been used for everything from guarding gold minds to hunting jaguars. The latter is an impressive feat considering that a Jaguar can run 40 miles per hour.

Fila Brasileiros are wonderful trackers, hunters, and herders, and the Brazilian army uses them for work in the jungle. They possess a unique strength, intelligence, and resiliance, making them able to work under difficult circumstances.

2. Norwegian dog with 6 toes climbs cliffs

The Norwegian Lundehund has six toes on each foot and a unique ability to tip its head backwards until it touches the back bone.

The breed has a great range of motion in all joints, allowing it to fit into narrow passages, and the unique feet makes it a good climber. The breed is at least 600 years old, and was originally used to wrestle and retrieve live Puffin birds from crevices in steep vertical cliffs.

The Lundehund was believed extinct after WWII and all dogs alive today stem from five individuals found on a remote island in the Arctic Ocean.

These dogs are loyal and playful, easy to live with, and require little grooming. They do have hereditary digestive disorder and it is important to keep an eye on the dog’s weight; many have problems absorbing nutrients from food and can starve even if they are well fed.

1. Irish dogs turn rotisseries

The Glen of Imaal Terrier is a small and tough breed native to Ireland. These hardy dogs stem back to the 16th century when they were bred to keep homes free from vermin. They were also used to hunt foxes and badgers.

None of these tasks were the dogs’ most important job, though. They are the only dogs in the world bred to be turnspit dogs.

The turnspit is giant rotisserie where the dog paddles a large wheel that in turn rotates a spit over the hearth. Because of this, the Glens have developed strong legs.

They would track foxes and badgers, then run for miles on the kitchen’s turnspit, and guard the home during the night.

This breed is active, agile, and known to have a mind of their own.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Thursday, June 19, 2014

10 unique dog breeds (10-6)

There are many unique dog breeds around the world, and even though we feature a rare dog breed every Monday it's easy to forget them. We put together a list of ten rare breeds with particularly interesting skills, qualities, or history. Here are numbers 10-6. Numbers 5-1 will be on the blog tomorrow.

10. Japanese protector scares intruders through size

The Tosa is a Japanese breed of dog, at least 1,000 years old. They were traditionally used for dog fighting, and through the centuries the breed has changed from a small spitz type to today’s large and muscular dog.

Before the start of WWII there were thousands of Tosa breeders in Japan, but when the country entered the war they made dog fighting illegal. In an attempt to discourage illegal fights, raising dogs of 150 lbs was also made illegal. The breed would have gone extinct, but a few of the most passionate breeders smuggled the last remaining dogs to northern Japan and hid them until the end of the war.

Today, the breed has split into two groups. The Japanese bred are smaller and generally weighs between 80 and 135 lbs. Non-Japanese bred weigh between 135 and 200 lbs. With such a massive size it’s a good thing that they’re known for having a stable temperament. Back in the day when the Tosa was bred for dog fighting they had to be quiet, because Japanese rules demanded silence. To this day they rarely bark, but when they do it’s a deep rumbling sound that combined with the massive size efficiently keeps intruders away.

These dogs are known to be fearless, brave, and intelligent. They are loyal to their family, but like all breeds they require training and socialization.

9. Dog of the ancient Israelites

The Canaan Dog is a natural dog breed from Israel that stems back to biblical times. This might be one of the world’s oldest still existing breeds; there are drawings of dogs looking just like it dating back to 2,200 BC.

This was the herding and guard dog of the ancient Israelites. In modern times they’ve been recruited and trained as mine detector dogs, and at least 400 of them served in WWII.

The average Canaan Dog is intelligent, easily trained, independent and territorial. Like all working breeds it requires ample exercise and a job to stay happy. They can often be seen winning dog agility trials, flyball, and obedience trials.

8. Singing dog is world’s rarest breed

The New Guinea Singing Dog is believed to be the rarest breed in the world, and has inhabited the island of New Guinea since the Stone Age.

This is one of the most primitive breeds in the world, separated from other dog breeds tens of thousands of years ago.  The Singing Dogs were originally thought to be a unique species, but were later grouped with the Australian Dingo as a wild-living subspecies of the dog.

The first dogs left the island in the 1950s and since then the breed has adapted to living as a pet. The singing portion of their name comes from their distinctive and melodious howl. They are able to vary the pitch at will.

Besides singing, the breed is known for its strong hunting drive, high intelligence, and ability to escape any house or yard. They are agile, and good at climbing and jumping.

7. Yodeling dog with special barking competitions

The Finnish Spitz is the national dog of Finland, known for its exceptional barking ability. The breed traces its roots back 6,000 years, and came to Europe around 2,000 years ago. In Finland, the breed is called Suomenpystykorva, and it is hailed in many patriotic Finnish songs.

These dogs were bred to bark, and they can yodel. They bark up to 160 times a minute and Finland hosts barking competitions for them.

Suomenpystykorva are intelligent, lively, quick, and active. A typical member of the breed loves children and gets along well with other dogs. The dogs are known to be tough. They were originally bred for hunting birds and small games, but despite the small size and cute appearance many tousle with moose and even bears.

6. The dog of the Vikings is featured on stamps worldwide

Svensk Vallhund or Västgötaspets is a sturdy and fearless dog with short legs that stems back to the Vikings over 1,000 years ago. It is believed to be the ancestor of the Welsh Corgi as it travelled to Wales with the Vikings in the 800s.

These versatile dogs are popular in their home country of Sweden, and have traditionally been used to herd cattle, guard the home, and catch vermin. They’re known for being alert, intelligent, and affectionate. Besides performing their traditional duties they excel as show dogs and obedience dogs.

The dog of the Vikings have some unique properties. It can be born with no tail, with a stub tail, or with a full tail. And, it is one of few breeds to be featured on stamps in a diverse range of countries such as Sweden, Nicaragua, Russia, Ukraine, Tajikistan, and Mali.

Come back tomorrow for the rest of the list!

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

War veteran makes heroic dog rescue

Image from KCTV5
Sometimes, the right person is truly at the right place at the right time, and what a difference it makes! Recently, war veteran Aaron Schneider was heading home down I-470 when he saw a car hit a little dog. That driver just kept on going, but Aaron acted. He pulled over and ran across three lanes of traffic to put himself between the hurt dog and oncoming traffic. 

According to KCTV5, he said, "Having served in Iraq, you see a lot of loss, which is one of the reasons I was determined to see him make it."

He tried to pick up the hurt dog, but the Beagle was too afraid and in pain, so he called for help. He waited by the Beagle's side for three hours, but no one came. During that time, he gained enough trust to be able to move the dog onto a makeshift stretcher.

Since then, the dog has been named Buster, and has spent a few days in a veterinary intensive care unit. Without help, he would have died from his injuries, but thanks to Mr. Schneider, he is expected to make a full recovery. Furthermore, as soon as he's well enough to leave the vet, he will get a home with his rescuer.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Florida dog falls down pipe and tumbles 14 stories

Image of Susie from the Sun Sentinel
Maltipoo Susie is a resident of Fort Lauderdale who recently suffered some really bad luck. She was visiting in an apartment building and fell through an uncovered vent, tumbling down 14 stories before she finally came to a stop on the second floor.

Poor Susie was stuck in the wall for three hours while Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue cut holes above and below the second floor to try to reach her. They eventually got close enough to get her out of the pipe before she could fall any further.

Susie escaped the adventure with a cut on her belly, and when this is written, she still rests at a local vet. She is expected to be okay, and we wish her a speedy recovery and better luck in the future.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Monday, June 16, 2014

Rare Breed Monday: Biewer Terrier

The Biewer Terrier is a toy dog with long hair and perky temperament. These dogs are very small, and generally weigh under 7 lbs. 

This is a young dog breed that saw the light of day in Germany in the mid 1980s, and the breed standard was created in 1989. The first representatives of the breed came to the USA in 2003, and today there is an active breed club.

These dogs are typically eager for adventure, energetic, brave, loyal, and clever. They are sweet and affectionate little dogs, but like all dogs they require training, attention, and exercise. They are small, but they still need to play, and go for daily walks.

The Biewer Terrier is fairly hardy, and have an average life expectancy of 12-15 years. They need regular bathing and brushing. Many keep their coat short to make it easier to manage.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Friday, June 13, 2014

Reverse breed restrictions

With landlord Jade Rouzeau, Rottweiler's are welcome
Many landlords don't accept pets at all, and those who do generally only accept smaller pets, or dogs of certain breeds. This naturally causes problems for people who have a large dog, or a not allowed breed. Worst case scenario, the family might have to give up the dog, and a loved family member ends up being put down in a shelter.

According to the Huffington Post, Jacksonville landlord Jade Rouzeau tired of these conditions. She and her family love large dogs, especially pit bulls, and only rents to tenants with large dogs.

Besides being big, at least one dog in the household must be of a breed other renters tend not to allow. This list includes for instance Huskies, German Shepherds, Staffordshire Terriers, Pit Bull Terriers, Dalmatians, and Rottweilers.

Other qualities Rouzeau looks for are good-natured and friendly people who will love the home.

According to the article, only 12 percent of rentals nationwide are listed as pet friendly, and the number in Florida is even lower. Rouzeau's initiative will be a welcome one for lovers of big dogs.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Many dogs like to do puzzles

In the eyes of humans many dogs misbehave. They might be chewing up shoes, emptying the trash, tearing up the sofa, or other unwanted behavior. The underlying cause is often boredom. Dogs are both smarter and more energetic than we think they are, and they need mental stimulation.

In the wild, dogs would spend lots of time scavenging for food. Just hiding little pieces of food around the house can be enough to satisfy a dog and stop them from tearing things apart. There are also food puzzles. Instead of just dumping food into a bowl, the food goes into a puzzle that requires the dog to work to get it.

There are puzzles where the dog must lick or shake the puzzle, balls and dice that must be turned a certain way to get food out, and other versions. Pick one that is suitable for your dog's level and size; a puzzle perfect for a Border Collie might not fit a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

You can also make a puzzle yourself. For example, put treats in a cupcake tin and cover with tennis balls.

Thinking makes dogs tired, generally much more so than exercise can.

This cute Youtube video shows a happy dog burning through treat puzzles. It might take a little training, but once the dog figures out what to do - and what the reward is - they usually love it.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The dog did it; disappearing bling

There are many stories about magpies taking off with everything from wedding rings to shiny spoons.  Did you know that dogs might also have an affinity for stealing bling and shiny objects?

Some dogs aren't attracted to sparkly things at all, but others like to snatch up cell phones with sparkly covers, necklaces, or other objects and hide them. Many households with both children and pets probably blame the toddlers for the phone appearing under the sofa cushions or the house keys landing in the laundry pile, but it might be the dog.

There are many reasons why dogs do this. Some dogs might be bored, and the hide-and-seek game gives something to do. Others feel lonely, and having something stashed away that smells like their person provides comfort. Others yet might be stealing out of genetical reasons; in the past dogs would bury leftovers to protect their food, and return to eat the rest later.

One theory states that the dog might be seeking attention. Some dogs and young children covets attention to the point that they will take it anyway they can; even if it involves being scolded. If this is the case, the dog needs more interaction and play time. A puzzle toy can also help keep him or her occupied and happy.

Have you found something your dog hid? What was it?

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Win 1,000 lbs of dog food!

Yes, you read the headline right. We will be giving away 1,000 lbs of Black Gold dog food to a lucky winner, or to the rescue of their choice. Runners up will win Dunkin Donuts gift cards.

Entering the contest is super-easy. Visit and submit a photo of your dog using any dog door. It doesn't have to be a PlexiDor.

If you don't have a dog door, it's okay to improvise. Be creative!

The contest is open until November 30, so there is plenty of time to take a photo.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Monday, June 9, 2014

Rare Breed Monday, Polish Lowland Sheepdog

Image from
The Polish Lowland Sheepdog, or Polski Owczarek Nizinny, is a cheerful, intelligent, and fearless dog breed from Poland. The breed is popular in its home country, and it is gaining ground in the rest of Europe and the USA as well. 

The breed is believed to stem from long coated working dogs from Central Asia, and might be related to the Tibetan Terrier and Lhasa Apso.

The people of Tibet traveled and traded, and the dogs moved across Asia into Europe, where they mixed with local working dogs. The Polish Lowland Sheepdog has been used in Poland for at least six hundred years, herding and guarding.

Herding breeds are generally intelligent, energetic, and independent, and this breed is not an exception. The dogs are friendly and generally good with children, but can be stubborn and suspicious towards strangers. They do well in apartments provided they get enough exercise and have something to keep the entertained.

The thick and long coat requires daily brushing.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Friday, June 6, 2014

Lucy is the world's smallest working dog.

Lucy is a Yorkshire Terrier who recently set a Guinness World Record. She weighs 2.5 lbs and has been named the world's smallest working dog. Lucy goes to work as a therapy dog and visits hospitals, rehabilitation centers, and nursing homes. She also works with children with disabilities.

This sunshine story almost didn't happen. Lucy's human met her at a shelter, and at the time, Lucy was a sorry sight. After being lovingly nursed back to health, Lucy now spreads the love to others who need it.

The previous record holder was Momo, an eight-year-old Chihuahua from Japan who works as a police search-and-rescue dog. She has an advantage in many situations; she can squeeze into places the larger dogs cannot go.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Hurricane and tornado season are just around the corner

Summer is here, and with it comes unpleasant weather. No one wants hurricanes and tornados to come for a visit, but they still do, and every year pets are separated from their humans. Some come back, other families keep searching for years. 

The Bring Hanah Home movement, for example, has looked for a dog lost in the Joplin tornado for the past three years. Despite thousands of dollars in rewards and evidence that the dog survived the tornado, she is still missing.

Tornados, like the one in Joplin that took Hanah, and the ones in Oklahoma last year are difficult to manage because they appear so quickly. Hurricanes are expected, and there is usually ample time to prepare or leave the area.

Regardless the type of natural disaster, there are things we can do to prepare.

  1. Put together a disaster kit with basic supplies and medications. It should contain enough to get by for three days. 
  2. For smaller cats and dogs, keep a carrier available. Put the pets in the carrier when the weather starts to look bad. It's better to have them in the carrier and not need to leave than to run around the home looking for them when disaster is on top of the house.
  3. Take dogs to the tornado/hurricane shelter on a regular basis. Being used to the area around and environment inside the storm shelter will lessen stress when they have to be there.
  4. If you have to head for the shelter and have time to bring something, favorite treats, toys, and bedding can ease the pets' stress.
  5. Make sure your pets wear a collar and/or harness with current tags and identifying information. If you live in an area prone to disastrous weather, it's more important than ever to have pets microchipped.
It is naturally also important to make a pet-friendly emergency plan. You don't want to make your way to a shelter just to find that pets can't enter.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Dog of the Month: Broholmer

The Broholmer is a large Danish dog breed, often employed as guard dog. In the past it would serve as guard dog for the wealthy. It was expensive to keep such big dogs and average people often couldn't afford them.

The breed resembles a Mastiff and is sometimes called the Danish Mastiff. The dogs are large and powerful with a loud and impressive bark.

Broholmers are generally calm, good tempered, and friendly, albeit watchful towards strangers. They make great family companions.

With such a big dog - females weigh around 90-130 lbs and males 110-150 lbs - training is important. A 150 lbs dog taking off after something could pull a strong man along.

~ Maria Sadowski ~

Monday, June 2, 2014

Rare Breed Monday: Ibizan Hound

Image from 
The Ibizan Hound is a good-natured and elegant dog with large ears and amber eyes. The breed comes from Spain and was originally used to hunt rabbits. It developed a wonderful ability for jumping to be able to navigate the rough terrain, and it can jump higher and longer than any other breed; they can clear a 5 foot fence with ease.

The breed is thought to stem from Egypt, and allegedly arrived to Ibiza with Phoenician traders. Egyptian depictions of dogs similar to the Ibizan Hound stretch back to 3,400 BC.

Ibizan Hounds are gracious, even-tempered, and kind, but need an active life to stay happy and healthy. It is difficult to secure a yard to contain them, because they can jump over almost anything, and they love to chase anything that moves.

A fun fact about the breed; when the tomb of Tutankhamen was discovered in 1922 it held a life-size statue of Anubis, and the statue is identical to the Ibizan Hound of today.

~ Maria Sadowski ~