New Zealand Dog News

Reviewing the dog news in New Zealand with editors comments. Someone needs to keep reviewing how our dogs are doing in society.

March 31, 2008

For a Temporary Best-Friend Fix, Rent a Dog (Kibble Included) for a Day

Ms. Stevenson picked up Oliver, a 3-year-old cockapoo — half cocker spaniel, half poodle — whom she had rented before.


The agency was Flexpetz, which rents dogs that have been rescued from animal shelters in the hope that they will eventually be adopted. Flexpetz operates out of the Wet Nose Doggy Gym at 34 East 13th Street, which provides day care and boarding for dogs. The company started in San Diego and opened in Los Angeles in June and in New York in October. It plans to expand to Boston, Washington, San Francisco and London.

“There are a lot of people out there looking for companionship,” said Chris Haddix, 28, who runs the New York branch of Flexpetz. There are usually five or six dogs available for rent, many of them on display in the Wet Nose storefront window, attracting crowds.


I always thought that this would work in NZ. I was looking into something like this, but I'm not really sure if people are prepared to pay... that's the only way something like this could be sustainable.

Newborn pups getting mouth-to-mouth

A newborn puppy fighting for its life and an oyster don't have a lot in common.

To Kim Malcolm giving mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to a mushy newborn it's all kind of obvious.

Every so often a puppy will arrive in the world looking a little flat, and not breathing.
Malcolm and others at the Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind's Guide Dog Services know what to do; breathe into the pup's nose and mouth.

"I don't like eating oysters but it's like eating oysters," says Malcolm who is the breeding services coordinator. MORE>>
Give generously. The Doglinks' team always goes out with our dog Holmes on a Friday night. Keep a look out for us (Chch) , and put your hand in your pocket and take out some $$. It goes to a great casue.

March 30, 2008

Men shy away from the unkindest cut

New Zealand men's sympathy for their pets' packages is an "ecological disaster waiting to happen", Unitec research has revealed.

It has shown that many Kiwi men do not have their pets neutered because they are concerned what the operation will do to their beloved animal's sexuality or masculinity.

Evidence from the SPCA-funded study showed just 80 per cent of men sterilised their cats or dogs, compared to more than 90 per cent of women. MORE>>

This is an interesting study. I just read in the paper last week about circumcision and how New Zealand were the biggest uptake, and also the biggest stopping of the inhuman act. I consider it barbaric, and I can't get my head around how it was deemed 'normal' back then. I mean... cutting some skin in your most sensitive place. I mean... if we were designed to NOT have the skin there, then why do men have it.. and women for that matter.

But then, circumcision is not like neutering. I would like to see what people thought of neutering when circumcision was in fashion.

March 28, 2008

The Dog Listener Downunder on TV

Saturdays at 8pm

On the next episode (29 March): Jan Fennell offers tips and advice on how to improve the behaviour of a barking mad Irish Setter called Ryan.

She then turns her attention to a little clown called Milo the Jack Russell. Milo just loves clowning around and while it was cute for a while, it is now driving owner Marilyn to distraction. MORE>>

Dangerous Dog Video- Japanese Akita

Dangerous Dog
Donna-Marie Lever reports on the story of a man viciously attacked by a dog - Now he wants the popular dog out of the country or at least added to the country's dangerous dog list. Also, John Payne, President of New Zealand Institute of Animal Control Officers discusses dangerous dogs with Mark Sainsbury.

Play the video here after clicking on the link

March 27, 2008

100 years of dog trials

They have often been referred to as the marriage trials rather than the dog trials, such is the time the men spend at them.

But regardless of the reputation, the Tarata Sheep Dog Trial Club is still going strong and celebrates its centenary next month in a special five-day event.

The club is one of the few that has survived in the district over the years, with the Tarata school and the tennis and badminton clubs closing down.

"It is a very good thing for the district, socially. Nowadays we don't have all the clubs and the sports events we used to have," club patron Bill Leake says.

The 68-year-old started competing in 1966.

"I used to have a lot of success years ago. I'm not actively competing now," he says.


I hope that there are a lot of young folk competing... it's such a great sport!

March 26, 2008

Dog ban empties park

Dog owners are blaming the deserted state of Glendowie’s Tahuna Torea Reserve on the bylaw banning dogs.

The reserve, once popular with dog walkers and joggers, is now virtually unused after being deemed a no-go area for dogs by the Auckland City Council in 2003.

This followed concerns about the impact of dogs on the reserve’s birdlife.

How about CATS... is there a ban on them, as they are the ones that have the greatest impact on bird life!

A petition with more than 800 signatures was presented to the council asking it to reconsider but the ban has been kept.

No survey or public consultation of the reserve’s public use was done by the council during the bylaw review.

WHAT !!! no public consultation !!
Safety problems have also arisen since the dog ban.

People and their dogs using Tahuna Torea created a "safety net" for walkers and joggers, says Ms Campbell.

"No one wants to walk or run in an isolated park."

The bylaw that affects the reserve is coming up for review in a few months.
Ms Millar urges anyone interested in the area to make a submission to the council.

March 24, 2008

Dogs yap at the heels of pro careers

(Rotorua) One of the most successful dog acts since Lassie and Rin Tin Tin is turning professional. Chelsea Marriner and her quartet of dogs is on the open market and already offers are rolling in.

Chelsea, who turns 17 in June, has earned national attention with Brodie, now 14, and said she and her family had been thinking about the idea for some time. "We saw a couple of people doing it overseas," Chelsea says, "and we thought it looked an idea that would go down well over here".


Chelsea and Brodie have entertained hundreds of groups over the years, and each year the performances of her dogs seemed to improve with her own maturity.

"It has been passing through our minds, and once we saw people overseas doing it we decided to have a go," Chelsea said.
"We've had good feedback in the past." Chelsea and her performing dogs have been in demand for many years, "but we have to get out and a about if we're to go anywhere," she says.


"People do come up and say how they've enjoyed it, the fact that we've done it for nothing." Demands on training and fitness can be expensive, as feeding the dogs comes at some cost. Dog biscuits she has been given for services rendered over the years can be traded in for meat.


Vege pumps up volume

Yes, that is a dog standing on a pumpkin. And no, this picture has not been tampered with.

Admittedly, the dog is not exactly an Irish wolfhound. It is a 2-year-old chihuahua named Ali.

But the pumpkin is quite something. At 204kg, it is New Zealand's heaviest vegetable of 2008 (so far).

Harold Gloag, of Roxburgh in Central Otago, has been growing Atlantic Giant pumpkins for the past decade, and, although he fed it only water, this fine specimen is by far the biggest he and his wife Gwen have produced. MORE>>

John Roughan: For the love of dogs, give them space to wander

(This is a great dog story...)

The dog was not my idea. My son must have been about 12 when he decided a dog was his heart's desire.

He'd had a collection of ceramic hounds for as long as I could remember but I thought if I nodded vaguely the stage would pass.

A year later he was still asking and had elicited the support of his little sister. I told them about the young collie I had as a boy in a Southland country schoolhouse, how it used to run between my legs and send me sprawling and how much it needed those wide open spaces.

When the family moved to a city my father said it would be no place for a dog. That was easy to accept; I didn't know how I would survive in a city, let alone my irrepressible pet.

It went untrained to an uncle's farm. It took a year or two for my parents to tell me it had worried sheep and Uncle Jim had shot it.

I don't know why I thought that story would convince my kids that fathers know best. They saw dogs in the city all the time.

Another year of Jared's intermittent yearning and he had his mother on side. She'd grown up with cats and had no idea how much attention a dog needs.

Desperate, I resorted to self-interest. "You know who is going to end up having to walk it every day." They wouldn't be dissuaded; they loved the idea of daily walks.

Defeated, I called the Humane Society and we set out to see a few of the pups in need of a new home. The first two were reasonably normal and placid, the third was a lively, bright-eyed mutt that claimed to be a labrador cross but looked nothing like one. Lean and leggy, he bore more resemblance to a small horse.

The owner was an elderly man who had gone to live with his daughter's family and while Dad was welcome, his dog wasn't.

Toby, as the old chap had named the colt-pup, was chained to a wire fence outside the daughter's bungalow and not liking it at all. The kids wanted to take him for a walk.

He bounded away as I knew he would, the three of them hanging on to his lead like anchors adrift. They could only follow where he wanted to go while I watched their excited panic and counted it salutary.

On the way home I started to compare the attributes of the two dogs that had not been too much of a handful when Jared announced he didn't want either, he wanted Toby.

The others were looking at me in surprise. They saw no contest, they all wanted Toby.

Thus I became, and always remained, a reluctant dog owner.

Dogs choose their owner in a household and sadly, as Jared was the first to observe, Toby chose me. He would follow me anywhere. I don't know why, I ignored him most of the time.

He lived with us at two houses, the first on the crater of a mangrove lagoon, the second adjoining a bush park. If there is any place for a dog in a city, he had it. MORE>>

People 'forget' dogs are dogs

At Easter each year, warnings are issued to pet owners not to feed chocolate to their beloved moggy or pooch.

Do not hide eggs where they can find them, as chocolate contains a substance which can kill dogs and cats.

While adoring owners might believe their pets deserve such treats, at Easter vets are inundated with cases where the family pet has been poisoned by chocolate. MORE>>

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March 20, 2008

Rover and out if you give chocolate eggs to dogs

Easter might mean chocolate to many but vets are warning people not to give their pets the treat. Emergency visits to vets spike over the Easter long weekend.

The chemical found in chocolate, theobromine, triggers the release of the euphoric hormone, seratonin, in humans but in dogs it can lead to intoxication and poisoning.

"Because of their indiscriminate eating habits, Easter is one of the times we see a lot of dogs with chocolate intoxication," says emergency vet Dr Sarah Haldane, from the University of Melbourne's vet clinic. MORE>>


March 19, 2008

Doggone! Key trick takes the biscuit

A parking warden who doubles as a dog catcher was locked out of his own car by a passing dog.

Wanaka dog catcher Daryl Taylor was on patrol when he spotted a Jack Russell terrier roaming free and foraging in rubbish bags in the town centre.

After a short chase, Mr Taylor caught the terrier and took it to to the Lakes Environmental headquarters in the passenger seat of his car.

Mr Taylor went inside to check the animal's registration so he could inform the owners but when he returned to his vehicle found the dog had locked the car door. The keys were in the ignition. MORE>>

I would have been surprised if the dog owner would have received a dog fine... how embarassing!!

March 18, 2008

Tails wag with delight at dog show

Timaru's Gleniti Park went to the dogs during the weekend _ about 300 of them.

It was all part of the South Canterbury Dog Training Club's 50th dog show, with competitors from as far as Invercargill and Nelson bringing their furry companions to see just which dog was the best. MORE>>

March 16, 2008

Puppies dumped in Wellington duck pond

Three puppies dumped near a duck pond in Porirua, north of Wellington, are lucky to be alive, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) says.

The puppies, aged just a few days old, would have died had they not been found last night, Wellington SPCA chief executive Judi Weir said.

"Puppies of this age need their mother. These puppies would have died of either hunger, dehydration or cold," she said.

"All the owners had to do was call us and we would have come and collected them. This would have prevented the puppies suffering and we could have arranged to get the mother dog desexed to prevent more unwanted puppies being born." MORE>>

Well, maybe the person or people who put the puppies there were too afraid to call for help like the SPCA. Perhpas they felt that they'd be vilified for not de-sexing their bitch. How knows what people think.

I know that if you wanted to give your dog away in Chch and you rang the SPCA, they would tell you that they wouldn't take him... that's not what they do.

March 14, 2008

Beagle pups join border protection service

The newest members of New Zealand's border protection staff have started work - four beagle puppies.

The puppies were genetically engineered in a joint collaboration between MAF Biosecurity New Zealand (MAFBNZ) and Britain's Association of Masters of Harriers and Beagles (AMHB), which aimed to improve the breeding line of detector dogs. MORE>>

March 13, 2008

Car rolls as pet dies

It went from bad to worse for Bodine the chihuahua yesterday. After an attack by a larger dog, Bodine was being rushed to the vet by his owner, a Stratford grandmother in her 70s.

As the car came to the brow of a hill on Beaconsfield Rd, Bodine stopped breathing. Distracted by the mini canine's state, the driver lost control and flipped the vehicle.

Bodine was dead when the police arrived. The grandmother and her granddaughter were unharmed, but obviously distraught to have lost their companion.

True story!

March 09, 2008

Pets have got it covered

If your pooch breaks a paw or swallows a tennis ball, the vet bill could leave you choking - and what if your cat gets cancer?

Big advances in medical science mean owners can go the extra mile for their beloved pets, but treatment carries a high price.

Try swallowing $2500 for a doggie MRI scan, $4000 for reconstructive knee surgery or up to $6000 for a course of chemotherapy.

They're some of the treatments available at Auckland's Veterinary Specialist Group where a small but growing number of clients are taking out pet insurance to cover their bills.

Treatment prices are comparable overseas, so it's not surprising pet insurance is one of the fastest growing sectors worldwide. MORE>>

March 08, 2008

Animals have emotions too

When we talk about crocodile tears, dogged determination or laughing like a hyena we might not be that far off the mark, according to a visiting US biologist who says animals have emotions just like us.

Marc Bekoff, professor of biology at the University of Colorado, Boulder, is in Australia to give a series of public talks on the emotional lives of animals.

Dr Bekoff says scientists have moved on from the presumption that the way animals act is the result of programmed behaviour.

"It's not a question of if they have emotions but why they have evolved," he says. MORE>>

March 06, 2008

Puppies and kittens killed in shelters

Increasingly strapped for cash and low on volunteers, SPCA shelters are having to put down healthy kittens and puppies they can not find homes for .

The organisation put down 29,484 of the 59,654 animals they received in 2006 , SPCA chief executive Robyn Kippenberger told NZPA. About five percent of them were healthy.

"We don't just indiscriminately euthanise animals, we keep them if we possibly can," Ms Kippenberger said.

"However, when we produce too many animals to be rehomed, and we can't find people to home them, then we can't hold them indefinitely."

SPCA protocols around euthanasia dictate that generally any sick animal, or any animal deemed a threat to children or other animals, has less chance of survival than the rest. MORE>>

Woman accused of starving puppy misses court

Auckland SPCA says it is not surprised a woman accused of leaving her 11-month-old puppy to starve failed to appear in court to defend her actions.

An arrest warrant has been issued for Paulette Taki, 40, who was expected to appear in Auckland District Court this morning to face three animal cruelty charges.

The SPCA found a Staffordshire bull terrier locked underneath a Glen Innes house in the eastern suburbs on Christmas Eve.

The dog, known as Eve, looked like a carcass and apparently survived by eating her own faeces. MORE>>

This isn't lookin g good...

Couple take on challenge to help physically disabled

Arrowtown recently became home to New Zealand's youngest L-plate owner — an 11-week-old puppy called Emmit.

When he gets his full licence in two and a half years' time Emmit will be a mobility dog, trained to help people with physical disabilities.

Mobility Assistance Dogs Trust services co-ordinator Helen Spence said Emmit would be able to help people with all types of physical challenges from muscular dystrophy and cerebral palsy to those paralysed in accidents. MORE>>

March 04, 2008

Robot as good as real dog at easing lonely hours

A friendly dog can make older people feel less isolated – and it appears to make little difference if that wagging tail belongs to a robot doggie or the real thing.

Researchers at Saint Louis University in Missouri compared a 16kg, floppy-eared mutt named Sparky with AIBO, a far-from-lifelike robot dog, to see how residents of three US nursing homes would respond.

"The most surprising thing is they worked almost equally well in terms of alleviating loneliness and causing residents to form attachments," said Dr William Banks, a professor of geriatric medicine who worked on the study reported in the Journal of the American Medical Directors Association. MORE>>

Oh oh... even a dog can be replaced. Well, perhaps it can fool older people, but not me :) But hey, if it does, that's great. At least they can bring them in old people's rest homes and not be a barking nuisance!

March 01, 2008

Kennel cough spreading in South Island

Kennel cough, a highly infectious dog illness, is spreading in the South Island, says the New Zealand Veterinary Association. It has caused the cancellation of the Southland Agility and Obedience two-day dog show in Invercargill this weekend.

"Veterinarians in Southland, and other parts of the South Island, are reporting cases of kennel cough. Some of these cases were probably contracted at dog shows or other dog events," says the association's companion animal spokesperson, Pieter Verhoek.

Kennel cough is not usually life threatening. It causes a dry hacking cough and infected dogs may become unwell and go off their food. Some dogs will recover without treatment within a few days, but in others the cough can last for up to eight weeks. MORE>>
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