Watch dog owner hurl raccoon to save his pooch. CNN’s Jeanne Moos reports on a raccoon launched like a shot put.
July 25, 2013:
A team of researchers in Russia has conducted a series of experiments that prove that dogs are able to distinguish between different colors. In their paper published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, the team describes the experiments with dogs they conducted and the results they found.
For much of history, dogs have been assumed to be able to see only in black and white—their ability to differentiate between different colored objects was believed to be due to differences in brightness. In this new research, the team in Russia built on research recently conducted in the U.S. that found that dogs have two cones in their eyes suggesting they should have some ability to differentiate colors. Humans as most remember from grade school, have three cones, which allows for seeing all three primary colors. Since dogs have only two, they should be able to see some colors, but not others—blues, greens and yellows, for example, but not reds or oranges.
To find out if dogs are in fact able to see colors and to distinguish between them, the team conducted a clever experiment. First they trained several dogs to respond to one of four different colored pieces of paper: light or dark yellow and light or dark blue (by putting paper pairs in front of feedboxes that contained meat.) The dogs soon learned that certain colors meant they were in for a treat.
Next, using the same dogs that had been trained to respond to certain colors, the team placed pieces of paper with the color that they’d been taught to respond to in front of a feed box, along with another piece of paper that was brighter, but of a different color—a dog trained to respond to light blue for example would hopefully respond to dark blue instead of light yellow. The researchers found that a majority of the dogs went for the color identifier rather than brightness identifier most of the time, proving that they were able to distinguish color and were not relying on brightness to find their food treat.
The researchers suggest their findings indicate that most animals with just two cones are likely able to differentiate between colors and thus it’s likely they respond in ways that have not been previously studied.
Content Source: PHYS.org
July 25, 2013:
THE SAD STORY OF WRIGLEY…
Wrigley was just 4 weeks old when his mother and 7 siblings were found poisoned.
Alone and hungry he was trying to get milk from his dead mother. He is now at Soi Dog shelter, where he is getting intensive care as at only 4 weeks old he is extremely vulnerable to disease. It is ONLY through your support that Soi Dog can help Wrigley and thousands more like him. Please consider sponsoring one of our dogs today to enable us to continue this life saving work. Without you Wrigley would certainly have died not from poisoning but starvation.
July 25, 2013:
DELHI, ON – Wendy Rhona always kept her little cockapoo, Bayley, on a leash.
“It’s for his own safety,” Rhona recalled telling a friend.
However on Monday, the leash did little to protect Bayley from a bullmastiff/boxer mix that was running loose on Imperial Street in Delhi.
The bullmastif viciously attacked the small cockapoo as Rhona held onto the leash. Bayley died from his injuries at the scene, and the bloody image is etched into Rhona’s mind, she said Wednesday afternoon.
“It’s not right what happened here,” she said. “Nothing will make anything better.”
She would like to see the vicious dog removed from its home, which she said police promised would be done.
Police did not offer many details.
“The dog complaint is under investigation,” said Const. Teresa Ollen-Bittle with the Norfolk County OPP. “The dog has been identified.”
No charges have been laid at this time, said Ollen-Bittle.
She confirmed the dog in question appears to have had all its necessary vaccinations and is still in the custody of its owner.
Neighbours on Imperial Street are concerned for the safety of animals and humans alike since the dog has not been removed from the home. The large dog is known to roam free and is suspected of killing a cat last month, according to area residents.
“,” said Tracy Descheemaeker, who lives on Imperial Street and owns two small dogs. “It has been in my backyard and I’ve seen it on Ann Street. The dog should be in quarantine.”
Descheemaeker said she is worried to let her dogs out into her backyard unless she stands outside with them. She is also afraid to walk them down the street.
Ralph VanRooyen, who also lives on the street, feels the same way.
“I took a great big stick with me last night (when walking his dog),” he said.
“If it is going to do that to other animals, who is to say it won’t attack a small child,” said Descheemaeker.
The neighbours say they want the dog and its owners to face the necessary repercussions and Rhona would like to see it removed from the area.
“No one is safe as long as that dog is here,” said VanRooyen.
Content source: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dog killed in vicious attack by another dog. Simcoe Reformer
July 24, 2013:
Maltese-Yorkshire terrier cross dogs wait their turn to have their coats cleaned after the Brant County SPCA rescued 19 of them from a Paris-area home on Tuesday.
More than 80 dogs were rescued from “horrific” living conditions in a Paris-area home by animal control and SPCA officers on two separate occasions in less than a week.
Just over 60 of the rescued dogs were taken from the home last Wednesday, while the remaining dogs were rescued during a second investigation at the same home on Tuesday. The dogs are Morkies, a Maltese/Yorkie mix.
Most of the rescued dogs are adults but there are some puppies including one believed to be about three months old. All had heavily matted fur caused by the unsanitary conditions in the home.
“It was horrific,” Brandon James, an investigator with the Brant SPCA, said of the conditions in the home.
“No one should have been living there.”
When officers from the Brant SPCA and the Cambridge and District Humane Society entered the home during last Wednesday’s severe heatwave they had to wear masks, as well as white protective clothing.
The dogs had heavily matted fur, caused, in part, by the animals rolling around in the feces. The fur was so badly matted that it couldn’t be combed out. The dogs had to be shaved.
The rescued dogs were taken to West Brant Spaws, where a team of animal care workers shaved them and prepared them to be examined by veterinarians at West Brant Animal Hospital. The work of shaving the dogs took several hours.
“The biggest problem is the matting but some of them have dental issues as well – rotting teeth,” James said. “A few of them were quite stressed but they seemed to calm down once they got here.
“We’re going to get them assessed by the veterinarians and then we’ll have a better idea of what they need.”
As a result, the dogs are not up for adoption at this time, he said.
Once all of the dogs were removed last Wednesday, SPCA officials wondered if there were other dogs in need of care that weren’t at the home during the first raid. They returned to the home and rescued another 19 dogs, most of which had the same issues of heavily matter fur and poor teeth.
Once again, a crew of animal care workers were busy shaving the dogs.
“They’re doing a lot better now,” Jessica Madgwick, of West Brant Spaws, said. “After we finished with them last week, they were really happy and playing together.
“It was awesome to see.”
Darlene and Marshall Dougherty faces charges under the SPCA Act, including causing distress to animals.
Want to help?
The rescued dogs are not up for adoption but people can still help Brant County SPCA and the Cambridge and District Humane Society care for them.
Here’s how you can help:
Make a financial donation to the Brant County SPCA or the Cambridge and District Humane Society to help cover the medical care and costs of shaving and cleaning the dogs.
A financial donation would also help cover the costs of boarding the dogs while they are being assessed by veterinarians.
The Brant County SPCA and the Cambridge and District Humane Society have dry food but need wet food.
The Brant SPCA is at 539 Mohawk St. Brantford and can be reached by phone at 519-756-6620 or visit the website at www.brantcountyspca.com .
The Cambridge and District Humane Society is at 1650 Dunbar, Cambridge, Ontario, and can be reached at 519-623-7722 or visit the website at http://spca.cambridgeweb.net .
July 24, 2013:
There are eight million occupational stories in New York City, and none cries Gotham louder than that of the professional surrogate — the shrewd city dweller who spies a void that other New Yorkers are too hurried, harried or hard-pressed to fill and rushes enterprisingly in.
Over time, the city has spawned professional car-movers and professional line-standers, but its most visible — and audible — paid surrogates are indisputably its professional dog walkers.
By all accounts, Jim Buck was the first of them.
Mr. Buck, who died on July 4 at 81, is widely described as the first person to professionalize dog walking in New York City and, by extension, in the United States.
Starting in the early 1960s, Mr. Buck, the scion of a patrician Upper East Side family, rose each morning at dawn to walk passels of clients’ dogs, eventually presiding over a business in which he and two dozen assistants walked more than 150 dogs a day.
When he began that business, Jim Buck’s School for Dogs, it was the only one of its kind in New York. Today, the city has scores of professional dog walkers.
During the 40 years Mr. Buck ran his school, he was an eminently recognizable figure: an elegantly turned out, borzoi-thin man of 145 pounds, he commanded the leashes of a half-dozen or more dogs at a time — a good 500 pounds of dog in all — which fanned out before him like the spokes of a wheel.
He walked in sun; he walked in rain. In wintertime, his charges might be clad in small sweaters bearing the logos of the European resorts where their masters skied.
Jim Buck’s School for Dogs was equal parts exclusive preparatory academy, exercise class and reform school. In a 1964 profile of Mr. Buck in The New York Times, Gay Talese described him, plying his trade, as looking “like Charlton Heston in the chariot-racing scene in ‘Ben-Hur.’ ”
But with hindsight, it is more apt to liken Mr. Buck to Lee Marvin in the 1967 film “The Dirty Dozen.”
Mr. Buck’s clients were refined. Their dogs were less so.
The clients, mostly Upper East Siders, included some of the city’s most prominent names in the arts, government, finance and industry. (Continuing the tradition of walker-client confidentiality to which Mr. Buck long hewed, his family declined to name them. It did confirm Mr. Buck’s death, at St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center in Manhattan, apparently of complications of emphysema and cancer.)
The dogs included the intractable, the obstinate and the profoundly pampered.
One, an otterhound known to Mr. Buck’s staff as Oliver the Awful, was used for some years to audition prospective employees.
“Oliver knows when he’s testing someone new, and he can be counted on to leap into the first phone booth along the way and slam the door and wedge himself against it,” Mr. Buck told The New Yorker in 1965. “Brute force is of no avail; the only way to get him out is to remain poised and quietly talk him out.”
James Augustine Farrell Buck was born in Manhattan on Nov. 28, 1931. His family, socially prominent, had prospered in steel and shipping. As a youth, Jim showed dogs; he also trained horses at the Connecticut country homes of his uncles.
Footloose, determined and eager to flout convention, Mr. Buck bypassed college.
But by the early ’60s he was leading the sort of gray-flannel life of which he despaired, chafing in New York as a salesman for an electronics concern.
Mr. Buck knew dogs — as a young man, he bred Great Danes. He also knew New Yorkers. Before long, a void was filled.
By 1964, The Times reported, he was making $500 a week, more than his electronics job paid.
His cobbler enjoyed a regular cut: Mr. Buck wore through the soles of his shoes every two weeks.
Mr. Buck’s marriage to Ann Sage ended in divorce. A resident of Manhattan, he is survived by three sons, Jonathan, Christopher and Graham; two sisters, Mother Debra Joseph, a Benedictine nun, and Connie Buck; and a brother, Richard.
Jim Buck’s School for Dogs is gone now, closed a decade ago when Mr. Buck retired. But its legacy endures: some of the city’s professional dog walkers are his former employees.
As the city changes, so too does their work. There are no more telephone booths for latter-day Olivers to barricade themselves in. Few cobblers remain.
And in years to come, in perhaps the keenest loss of all, there may well be no more newsprint. A 20th-century artifact increasingly deemed redundant in the electronic age, it remains, for New York’s dog walkers, a vital, and indispensable, means of upholding the law.
Content Source: The NY Times
July 24, 2013:
A dog that was left on a feces-filled seventh-floor balcony in Scarborough has been rescued, Toronto police tell CityNews.
Despite claims from residents that the dog had been outside for days, without food or water, police said Tuesday the dog was unattended for 24 hours and had plenty to eat and drink.
Still, it was enough to lay a fine against the person who lives in the apartment at 410 McCowan Rd., who was looking after the pet for a friend. That person, who has not been identified, was fined $205 for failing to provide a suitable outside enclosure.
Appalled residents at the Scarborough apartment complex say they helplessly watched for “days” and accused the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of ignoring their calls.
However, the OSPCA told CityNews in an email it was first notified at 4:20 p.m. on Monday – and police rescued the dog shortly after midnight.
At no time was it an “emergency situation,” the OSPCA said, noting that the dog did have food and water.
Residents had told CityNews the dog was increasingly emaciated and seen pacing, and that animal agencies ignored their calls and gave them the run around.
When the call came in, OSPCA spokesperson Alison Cross said, “We informed the caller that the next available officer would respond as our officers were all on the road responding to other calls.
“Our dispatch informed the caller that the police could also be contacted. The Ontario SPCA did assign the case to an Officer last night and the investigation is ongoing,” Cross said.
The OSPCA says it has now launched a full investigation, but is asking for your help.
It appears the dog has been passed to various residents in the building and they aren’t sure where it is right now. If you know something that may help the OSPCA call 1-888-668-7722.
July 23, 2013:
The first time Sandi Capra met Scott Young, a young war veteran who was staying at the K9s For Warriors residential center in Florida, she couldn’t get him to make eye contact.
Capra, the K9s for Warriors director of development, watched as Young was introduced to his new service dog, Whisky, as part of the program. Young kept his eyes cast low and stayed away from the other vets at the center. When the first day of training was over, the vet who had served in Iraq and Kosovo quietly disappeared with the young dog into his room.
But two days later, something happened. With Whisky by his side, Young began acknowledging the other vets. And the next day, he looked right at Capra and smiled. “Good morning,” he said. “It’s a good day.”
He also made a startling revelation to Shari Duval, K9s For Warrior’s founder and president, that same morning.
“Scott came up to me and said that something occurred to him while he was in the shower this morning,” Duval said during a meeting later that day with Capra and her team members. “Today was the first day he woke up and didn’t think about suicide.”
K9s For Warriors is among several nonprofit groups across the U.S. that matches unwanted dogs with war veterans. But the group sets itself apart by specifically targeting shelter dogs about to be euthanized — some within a day — and trains them to help soldiers scarred by post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. Veterans spend three weeks at the program’s facility in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., where they share a four-bedroom, two-bath house — at no cost to them.
“When a Warrior arrives at our Academy, they arrive on two legs,” Duval wrote on the organization’s website. “They leave on six.”
When K9s For Warriors began in May 2011, Duval and her husband, pro golfer Bobby Duval, had a modest goal of graduating 12 warriors and dogs per year. But in 2012, 41 men and women graduated with canines, Capra told The Huffington Post. The organization now has a yearlong waiting list.
Wendy Diamond, animal activist, TV personality and author, has partnered her company, Animal Fair, and K9s For Warriors for a Bark Breakfast tour — a fundraiser with a goal of collecting $100,000 this summer to pair 10 more dogs with vets.
The tour kicks off Wednesday in Nashville and will continue until the end of October. Stops include Dallas, Chicago, Philadelphia, Washington, New York, Los Angeles and New Orleans.
With Diamond’s help, the tour has attracted support from Halo, Purely For Pets (Ellen DeGeneres’ pet food company), American Express Open, Loews hotels and Omni hotels.
Diamond told HuffPost that she was inspired to help K9s For Warriors after learning that suicide among veterans deserves more attention. According to a study the Department of Veterans Affairs released in February, one veteran commits suicide every 65 minutes.
“How could I sit back and just let that number go through my head?'” Diamond said. “I had to find a way to contribute.”
Diamond said she chose K9s For Warriors because of its transparency.
The program is funded entirely by donations, Capra said. It spends no money on advertising, and Duval doesn’t take a salary. Many of the people who work there with the vets and the dogs are volunteers. Veterans pay only their transportation to the center — and K9s For Warriors helps find other organizations to help cover that cost.
Dogs give the veterans a new focus, allowing them to better adjust to everyday life after their war service.
Kevin Lindenzweig embodies that success.
The 41-year-old retired Army staff sergeant spent 18 months in Iraq before an improvised explosive device sent him home with a broken back in 2008. Suddenly, he found himself away from the soldiers who’d become his family and stuck at home in Denison, Texas, injured, unable to work, heavily medicated and depressed.
“Basically I became a couch potato,” Lindenzweig told HuffPost. “I couldn’t leave the house.”
Even after he discovered K9s For Warriors and was accepted into the program, he said he remained skeptical.
Patriot changed that.
On Lindenzweig’s first day at K9s For Warriors in August 2012, he dropped his bags off, met Duval, and headed to the kennel to be paired with a dog. His first match didn’t gel — he and the dog were mutually disinterested in each other. He instead eyed a small black English lab in a leftover crate — “the demon dog,” one trainer told him. “He just won’t walk on a leash.”
Lindenzweig didn’t care. He hooked a leash to Patriot and the two walked in stride.
That night, while half-asleep, Lindenzweig was jolted awake — by slobber. Patriot, only about a year old, had interrupted Lindenzweig’s nightmare.
“I think I just knew, right then,” Lindenzweig said.
A year later, Lindenzweig has abandoned his couch potato status. He’s active again in the lives of his three children and wife. He weened himself off most of his anti-anxiety and pain medications. He and Patriot have even met former President George W. Bush on several occasions. (“He recognizes Patriot before me,” Lindenzweig said.)
“Basically it’s given me another outlook on life,” Lindenzweig said. “It’s given me my ability to engage in public again. It’s given me the ability to start my own nonprofit (Hooked On Freedom) so I can help people like me.”
His story keeps K9s For Warriors’ employees, like Capra, and its advocates, like Diamond, inspired to keep it growing. At each stop along the tour this summer, Diamond and K9s For Warriors workers will spread awareness about vets, PTSD and the canine program. Many graduates will attend with their families.
Mariza Hart, whose husband graduated from the program on Friday with his dog, Bolt, is eager to give back to K9s For Warriors. She plans to attend the Los Angeles tour stop, near the couple’s home in Riverside, Calif.
Hart, 43, said she feels like she suffered from what she called “co-PTSD” living with her husband, Jon, who was deployed to Iraq from October 2008 to October 2009.
“What I want to stress is that a wife or loved one will do anything to see their veteran happy again,” Hart said. “And when Jon first got to the facility, he called me one afternoon and told me that he’d had a moment, standing on a beach next to Bolt, where an overwhelming sense of peace washed over him — one he hadn’t felt in a long time.”
“If Bolt can help him reach that state in such a short time, then it’ll all be worth it,” Hart continued. “I’m really hopeful that this will be what Jon needs. I’m hopeful it’ll be a happy ending.”
Visit K9s For Warriors on Facebook for more information about the program and updates on the Barks For Breakfast tour.
Content Source: Huffington Post
July 23, 2013:
Don’t punish him, he’s just imitating you.
The next time your dog digs a hole in the backyard after watching you garden, don’t punish him. He’s just imitating you. A new study reveals that our canine pals are capable of copying our behavior as long as 10 minutes after it’s happened. The ability is considered mentally demanding and, until this discovery, something that only humans and apes were known to do.
Scientists first discovered that dogs are excellent at imitating their owners in 2006. Or at least, one dog had the talent: Philip, a 4-year-old Belgian Tervuren working with József Topál, a behavioral ethologist at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in Budapest. Topál adapted the method (called “Do as I do”) that Keith and Catherine Hayes developed in the 1950s for teaching an infant chimpanzee to copy their actions. Philip was already a trained assistant dog for his disabled owner and readily followed Topál’s commands. First, Topál told him to stay, and then commanded “Do as I do.” The researcher then performed a simple action, such as jumping in place, barking, putting an object in a box, or carrying it to Philip’s owner. Next, Topál ordered, “Do it!”, and Philip responded by matching the scientist’s actions. The experiment was designed to explore dog’s imitative abilities, not to measure how long Philip’s memory lasted; but his owner used Philip’s skill to teach him how to do new, useful behaviors, such as fetching objects or putting things away.
Despite Philip’s abilities, “nobody really cared, or saw that it could be useful for investigating how dogs learn or see their world,” says Ádám Miklósi, a behavioral ethologist at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest who was part of Topál’s team. And in 2009, another team concluded that dogs were only able to correctly imitate if there was no more than a 5-second delay between watching the action and repeating it. With such a short retention span, dogs’ vaunted imitation skills seemed useless.
But Miklósi didn’t fully accept this; he thought that the experiment needed to be adjusted by teaching the dogs more explicitly. There are two basic commands the dogs must learn: “Do as I do,” which means they need to pay attention to what is being demonstrated. The second command, “Do it,” requires the dog to imitate what they’ve seen. What was missing was also a command that the dog needed to wait before performing the imitation. An Italian dog trainer and graduate student at Eötvös Loránd, Claudia Fugazza, agreed and figured out a new method. “We wanted to see if dogs can do ‘deferred imitation,’ ” Fugazza explains. “So, they needed to learn that they also had to wait.” Deferred imitation is considered a sophisticated cognitive skill, because it requires an individual to recall an action after a delay of 1 minute or more—something that is possible only if the individual has retained a mental representation of the action.
Fugazza and Miklósi worked with eight adult pet dogs that ranged in age from 2 to 10 years old and their owners. The canines were all females of various breeds—border collies, a Yorkshire terrier, a Shetland sheepdog, a Czechoslovakian wolfdog, and one mixed breed. The owners trained their dogs using the “Do as I do” method. For instance, an owner would tell her dog to “Stay,” and then command, “Do as I do,” whereupon the owner might walk around a traffic cone, or put her head in a bucket placed on the ground, or ring a bell suspended from a bar. After returning to her dog, the owner would wait 5 seconds, and then command, “Do it!” The dog was expected to copy her owner’s behavior.
To see how long the dogs retained the memory, the owners were then asked to add another step to the test. After saying “Do it!”, they walked their pets behind a screen 14 meters away that hid the cone or other experimental objects, so that the animals wouldn’t continue to look at them. Then they waited for up to 30 seconds before returning to the starting position. “We just kept slowly increasing the time between the demonstration and the ‘Do it!’ command,” Fugazza explains.
Once the dogs could imitate the behavior twice in a row after waiting for 30 seconds, they were ready for the testing phase. Each dog was given 19 tests in eight different conditions—including copying a familiar action, a novel action, and a distracting action. All the dogs were shown the same novel action to imitate: Each one watched her owner enter a wooden box. This time, they were expected to wait behind the screen for one full minute, before returning to the starting position and being told “Do it!” For the distracting action tests, the dogs watched the owner do something they had seen before. Again, they were led behind the screen, but this time commanded to lie down, or fetch a ball. The waiting periods during these sessions lasted from 30 seconds to 4 minutes.
The dogs endured their longest breaks after watching a familiar action—with times varying from 24 seconds to 10 minutes. “They can wait even longer,” Fugazza says, “but we really don’t expect the owners to stay behind the screen for an hour!” The dogs also showed their smarts by repeating the action that they’d witnessed, even when a person other than the demonstrator and who did not know which action the dog was expected to copy gave the “Do it!” command. All the dogs completed 18 trials, scoring almost perfect marks; six dogs made one error each, one dog made two, and another made six mistakes, the team reports this month in Animal Cognition. “The statistical results are very robust,” Fugazza says, “and they show the dogs can do deferred imitation.” This suggests, she adds, that dogs have declarative memory—long-term memory about facts and events that can be consciously recalled. Until now, only humans have been shown to have this type of memory.
“It is a very nice demonstration of deferred imitation in dogs,” says Frans de Waal, a primatologist at Emory University in Atlanta who suggests that now that this ability has been found in our canid pals, it’s likely to be found in many other animals. Still, the discovery will likely be a surprise to even the most experienced dog trainers, says Brian Hare, a comparative psychologist at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. “I doubt that they would have predicted that dogs can learn new actions by observing what a human does, remembering the actions, and then repeating those actions, after translating them to their own doggy body plan.” And while de Waal agrees with the researchers that the dogs must be using declarative memory to do this type of imitation, Hare and others are less certain. “That’s the weakest part of the study,” says Jonathon Crystal, a comparative psychologist at Indiana University, Bloomington. “But the evidence for delayed imitation is solid and impressive.”
Fugazza and Miklósi hope that trainers, especially those teaching guide and other working dogs, take advantage of their willingness to learn by watching our actions. “They do it so naturally, because dogs are predisposed to learn socially from us,” Miklósi says. He and Fugazza advise dog-owners and trainers to think of useful actions for dogs to copy, such as fetching the mail from the mailbox, carrying a tool to the garden, or better yet on these hot summer days, grabbing a beer for Dad from the ‘fridge.
Content Source: Dog Is a Copycat, Science now
July 23, 2013:
After years of being used as a breeding dog, Dilila was discarded to the streets of Taiwan
After years of being used as a breeding dog, a German Shepherd named Dilila was left on the streets of Taiwan after she became too large for the commonly smaller homes in Taiwan. When she was found, Dilila was starving and scrounging for food. Luckily, her life took a turn for the better when she was rescued by Animal Rescue Team Taiwan (ARTT). Read on to find out how Dilila’s future went from totally hopeless to a fairy-tale ending.
Dilila’s story didn’t have a sweet beginning, but she did get a classic fairy-tale ending. After years of being used as a breeding dog, Dilila was discarded in the streets of Taiwan, then rescued and transported to the United States.
Here is Dilila’s story.
Just like in America, the Taiwanese fall in love with dogs made famous by the movies. When “101 Dalmations” hit the wide screen, Dalmatians were all the craze. When “Beverly Hills Chihuahua” became a hit, so did the breed. For Dilila, a German Shepherd, a long string of military movies pushed them to the point where, according to Claudia Lin of Clala’s Paw Rescue based in Taiwan, German Shepherds and Labradors became the most popular breed in the country. Large dogs like Dilila were often purchased as small pups that soon outgrew their small Taiwanese homes and apartments.
Dilila was used as a breeding dog, a tattoo on her ear denoting her lineage. When her “usefulness” was over, she was discarded in the streets. Fortunately, Dilila was not alone. She found a constant companion and friend in James, a Labrador. He was also most likely discarded based on his size. Together the two friends navigated the streets of Taiwan, avoiding authorities and scrounging for food.
When Animal Rescue Team Taiwan (ARTT) found Dilila and James, they were starving. Knowing they wouldn’t be able to find a home in Taiwan based on their larger size, a call for help went out to America. The Westside German Shepherd Rescue answered the call, and a pact was made. ARTT flew Dilila and James, paying for all travel and medical expenses themselves, and the American rescues would facilitate an adoption. James went to a Labrador rescue and was adopted immediately to a loving family.
Westside German Shepherd not only found a loving home for Dilila, but it was one amongst their own fosters. Alan took one look at Dilila and knew he wanted her. In this true perfect ending, Dilila may have lost a good friend, but she gained a family.
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