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Archive for the ‘dog culture’ Category

Today I am asking you all to take action for greyhounds. Just read this article and sign the petition…

The race to protect greyhounds

greyhound

Every year at least 10,000 greyhounds are retired from racing. The fate of many of these greyhounds is unknown and huge numbers simply ‘disappear’.

We believe that the health and happiness of thousands of racing greyhounds is very poor. Welfare issues can occur at any life stage, so we believe that all aspects of the greyhound industry, from breeding to kennelling, racing, transportation, management and final retirement need to be improved. We want to see greyhounds protected from cradle to grave.
An opportunity to protect racing greyhounds
The Government has launched a public consultation on the regulation of the greyhound racing industry in England with a deadline for submissions on the 22nd July 2009.

Please take action today!
We really need your help to demonstrate the rising tide of public unease about this important welfare issue. We want to get at least 20,000 people responding to the government consultation, to call for the protection of racing greyhounds from cradle to grave.

You can respond to the government consultation using this link. Please feel free to insert your own comments within the email as a personal response will always be stronger.

Thank you for your ongoing support.

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I wonder if you have already heard about this new breed of Labradoodles? Sounds like a joke, I know, but it’s dead serious.
They look very woolly and sheep-like, compared to me, and appear to be bread for people who are allergic against our coat hair and “SMELL”!! (I wonder who dares calling my natural odeur like this!?).

Anyway – this is what I found on Wikipedia:

Labradoodle

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


A brown Labradoodle with a fleece type coat. The appearance of Labradoodles may vary.

A Labradoodle is a crossbred or hybrid dog created by crossing the Labrador Retriever and the Standard or Miniature Poodle.

History

The Labradoodle was first deliberately bred in 1989, when Australian breeder Wally Conron first crossed the Labrador Retriever and Standard Poodle for Guide Dogs Victoria. His aim was to combine the low-shedding coat of the Poodle with the gentleness and trainability of the Labrador, and to provide a Guide Dog suitable for people with allergies to fur and dander. Guide Dogs Victoria continue to breed Labradoodles today and Labradoodles are now often used around the world as Guide, Assistance, and Therapy Dogs as well as being popular family dogs.

Appearance and temperament

The Labradoodle as a dog breed is still developing, and does not yet “breed true,” i.e., puppies do not have consistently predictable characteristics. While many Labradoodles display desired traits, their appearance and behavioral characteristics remain, from an overall breed standpoint, unpredictable.

As such, Labradoodles’ hair can be anywhere from wiry to soft, and may be straight, wavy, or curly. Some Labradoodles do shed, although the coat usually sheds less and has less dog odor than that of a Labrador Retriever.

Like most Labrador Retrievers and Poodles, Labradoodles are generally friendly, energetic and good with families and children (although as with any dog the temperament may vary between individuals). Labradoodles also often display an affinity for water and the strong swimming ability present in both their parent breeds.

Like their parent breeds, both of which are amongst the world’s most intelligent dog breeds,Labradoodles are very intelligent and quite trainable. Labradoodles can be taught to obey verbal or sign language commands, or both, and remain commonly used as guide dogs for disabled or handicapped persons around the world.

Types of Labradoodle

A group of Labradoodle Assistance Dogs.

A three-month old Labradoodle

There is no universal consensus as to whether breeders should aim to have Labradoodles recognized as a breed . Some breeders prefer to restrict breeding to early generation dogs (i.e. bred from a Poodle and Labrador rather than from two Labradoodles) to maximise genetic diversity, in order to avoid the inherited health problems that have plagued some dog breeds.

Others are breeding Labradoodle to Labradoodle over successive generations, and trying to establish a new dog breed. These dogs are usually referred to as Multigenerational (abr. Multigen) or Australian Labradoodles. Australian Labradoodles also differ from early generation and Multigenerational Labradoodles in that they may also have other breeds in their ancestry. English and American Cocker Spaniel/Poodle crosses (ie Cockapoos), Two Irish Water Spaniels and Soft-Coated Wheaten Terriers have variously been used in some Australian Labradoodle lines. The Curly Coated Retriever were used too, but these lines did not work out and they were discontinued.

Labradoodle coats are generally divided into 3 categories: Wool (with tight curls, and similar in appearance to that of a Poodle, but with a softer texture); Fleece (soft and free-flowing, with a kinked or wavy appearance); or Hair (which can be curly, straight or wavy, but is more similar in texture to a Labrador’s coat) . Labradoodles come in a wide variety of colours, including chocolate, cafe, parchment, cream, gold, apricot, red, black, silver, chalk, parti colours, and generally all the colours that can be found in Poodles. They also can be different sizes, depending on the size of poodle (i.e. toy, miniature or standard) used.

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I am very proud of my breed. Yes. Did you know that Labradors are popular not only as guide dogs and gun dogs, but as company for presidents and even THE QUEEN?

Look at this…

vladimir_putin_and_koni-1
This is Vladimir Putin and his lab Koni…

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and here’s Bill Clinton with Buddy.

queendogs_large
And there you are! Corgis – well,  of course, but who’s her favourite?

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Apparently, we were domesticated from our wolf ancestors about 15,000 years ago. This date would make us, the K9s,  the first species to be domesticated by humans.

Evidence suggests that we were first domesticated in East Asia, possibly China, and some of the peoples who entered North America took us with them from Asia.


The wolf. Illustration: The wolf approaches a sheepfold like a dog, stealthily and silently, without waking the shepherd. His eyes shine at night like lamps.

As humans migrated around the planet a variety of K9 forms migrated with them. The agricultural revolution and subsequent urban revolution led to an increase in the dog population and a demand for specialization. These circumstances would provide the opportunity for selective breeding to create specialized working dogs and pets.

This all shows that the relationship between human and canine has deep roots.

So who exactly are we? How did we become these more than recognised 800 breeds and uncountable mongrels?
Dogs are not simply domesticated wolves. They are truly their own species, shaped by the same process that created coyotes and other canids that have split from each other on the family tree. Perhaps by viewing dogs as deformed or substandard wolves created by people, we fundamentally misunderstand and underestimate them as the unique species that they are.”

How true!

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Today I found a very interesting blog, The Basenji in Ancient Egyptian Art, investigating the relationship between dogs featuring in murals and other artefacts of the ancient Egypt – and the existing breed of the Basenji. The first picture shows the god Anubis.

Anubis was a very old god of the ancient Egyptians, universally worshipped throughout the land. Typical of the deities from the Egyptian pantheon, Anubis is often pictured with a human body and an animal head—just what species of head is the subject of some debate. That so many of the Egyptian gods have animal heads or other “creature features” does not mean that this culture worshipped rams, ibises, hawks, beetles, hippopotamuses, or the like. Rather, the animal head illustrates “an attribute of the divinity that characterizes its being. Many proud basenji owners who are aware of their breed’s link to ancient Egypt will argue that basenjis were the inspiration for Anubis. Evidence does exist to support this claim.”

Now look at these photos of Basenjis:

To me the similarity with good old Anubis seems obvious!

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dogs in Hinduism

It is very interesting reading about the role dogs play in various religions. Here some details about dogs in Hinduism, mainly during the Tihar festival that falls roughly in November every year.

A dog after being decorated in Kukur tihar

A dog after being decorated in Kukur tihar , the “dogs’ Day” in Nepal

During the Nepalese Tihar Festival, on Day Two: On the second day of Tihar, Kukur (Dogs) are adorned with flower garlands, red tika on their forehead, and are offered food, they are the king of the day! On this day, people pray to the Kukur to guard their homes. There are lots of stray Kukur, but on this day, even the most unsightly Kukur will be treated like a king, every dog has a day. Tihar is also about breaking the boundaries only men created, “The Good”, “The Bad”, “The Ugly”! In Hinduism it is believed that Kukur guards the underworld empire.

Shepherd Chature with garland

Dogs have a major religious significance among the Hindu in Nepal and some parts of India. . In Hinduism, it is believed that the dog is a messenger of Yama, the angel of death, and dogs guard the doors of Heaven. Socially, they are believed to the protectors of our homes and lives. So, in order to please the dogs they are going to meet at Heaven’s doors after death, so they would be allowed in Heaven, people mark the 14th day of the lunar cycle in November as Kukur-tihar, as known in Nepali language for the dog’s day. This is a day when the dog is worshipped by applying tika (the holy vermilion dot), incense sticks and garlanded generally with marigold flower.

” A dog plays many roles in our society. We have dogs in our houses as guardian of the house. As the legend also says that there is a dog at yama’s gate guarding the gate to the underworld. The dog is also the steed of the fearful Bhairab, the god of destruction. So on this day a big red tika is put on a dog’s forehead and a beautiful garland around the neck. After worshipping the dog, it is given very delicious meal. This day the saying ‘every dog has his day’ comes true; for even a stray dog is looked upon with respect. We pray to the dog to guard our house as he guards the gate of the underworld and to divert destruction away from our homes. On this day you can see dogs running around with garlands on their neck.” (Festivals of Nepal)

So, at least for one day, dogs have a good life in Nepal…

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