Companion Animal Psychology News May 2017

This month's news and favourite stories from around the web.

A dog and cat peruse the latest news about pets

By Zazie Todd, PhD

Some of my favourites from around the web this month…

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An anonymous article from the owner of a reactive dog that resonated with many people. "It is painful for me to have to portray my dog as some kind of devil dog to you to get my point across. He really is not; he is funny, intelligent, and the most loving dog I know."

A thoughtful post from Ken Ramirez on the use of clickers in dog training. "The best trainers will keep asking questions to better understand the techniques we use and to understand the science underlying each procedure."

Ouch! Acquired bite inhibition and puppies by Kristi Benson at the Academy for Dog Trainers. "Luckily, most dogs have good—or at least good enough—ABI. However, dog trainers and veterinarians do occasionally get a call about a dog with poor ABI, and it is always heartbreaking."

Why do dogs like to roll in smelly things? By Mary Jo Dilonardo, with interestingly-different opinions from Dr. Stanley Coren, Dr. Patricia McConnell, Dr. Alexandra Horowitz, and Dr. Marty Becker.

Puppy play: why it matters by Sylvie Martin at Crosspaws. "They throw themselves on top of one another and on the floor, they paddle and punch with their paws, they hang off each other’s ears with their teeth, they chase and invite being chased, they bow, bowl and bounce all over the place. In short, they seem to be having a ball."

Dr. Anne Fawcett on re-directed aggression in cats. "Last night I was the victim of an attack, from a household member." 

Why do most animal shelter workers burn out? By Dr. Hal Herzog. "Like other people who are “called” to a career, all the shelter workers in the study entered the field with a sense of deep moral, social, and personal commitment. But caring for animals can have its costs."

Pets in the news

Dubai goes to the dogs. Expats abandoning pets when they finish work placements.

Researchers at the University of Liverpool looked at whether feeding a raw diet to dogs poses a risk to human health. “t was found that dogs fed diets containing raw-meat were more likely to carry Salmonella species and antibiotic resistant E. coli compared to the control group (cooked diets), including E. coli resistant to multiple types of antibiotics”

How this teen and his dog in Nova Scotia saved the life of an 89 year old man.

Why the cats on one British island have lost their tails on Manx cats. See also International Cat Care on Manx cats and the problems this genetic defect causes.

Giving a speech can by terrifying, but these dogs are here to help… Karin Brulliard on the “audience dogs” at the Kogod School of Business.

Could Omar be the world’s longest cat?

The mystery of the wasting house-cats on the rise of feline hyperthyroidism.

Upcoming Events

But my dog isn’t food motivated. PPG webinar by Kathy Sdao Wednesday June 28th 2017.

Feline foraging toys: How to implement, motivate, and stage the difficulty level by Ingrid Johnson for Pet Professional Guild. Weds 26th July 4pm EDT.

Photos, Videos and Podcasts

Dr. Susan Hazel on canine behaviour. “In general, we’re not good at reading dog, but dogs are geniuses at reading us.”

In this short clip from a new BBC series, Dr. Carri Westgarth explains the signs to look for that mean a dog is anxious.

Why humans have pets and chimps don’t. Fascinating talk by Dr. Hal Herzog

Here at Companion Animal Psychology

This month saw the launch of the Companion Animal Psychology t-shirt. Wearable art for animal lovers, it is available in various colours and styles. 100% of the proceeds go to the BC SPCA Maple Ridge.

The cat loves dog t-shirt is available in pink and other colours

This is a cause that means a lot to me, and I thank you for your support. Let me know which colour you pick!

The t-shirt shown above is the Gildan women's relaxed tee in pale pink.

The month’s book for the Companion Animal Psychology Book Club is Dog Sense: How the New Science of Dog Behavior Can Make You A Better Friend to Your Pet by John Bradshaw (titled in Defence of Dogs in the UK and Australia).

This month saw a thoughtful guest post from Kristi Benson on the ways dogs are like us and not like us. Thank you, Kristi!

My post on a new study that found people mistakenly think anxious dogs are relaxed in interactions with babies hit a nerve and is already my second-most popular post of all time. I also wrote about the potential causes of problems in pet store puppies.

I’m taking a week off blogging to catch up on other things. See you soon!

Zazie Todd, PhD, is the award-winning author of Wag: The Science of Making Your Dog Happy and Purr: The Science of Making Your Cat Happy. She is the creator of the popular blog, Companion Animal Psychology, writes The Pawsitive Post premium newsletter, and also has a column at Psychology Today. Todd lives in Maple Ridge, BC, with her husband, one dog, and two cats. 

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