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Blog: Karen B. London
Paws to Read
Literacy improves when kids read to dogs
When kids read to dogs, the dogs don’t judge kids who are still learning how to read or those who may feel hesitant about their skills. Dogs don’t laugh or tease, either. That makes the experience of reading to dogs very different than reading when other kids, or even adults, are around. Kids become more confident and are willing to spend time reading when the listener is a dog. Practice...
Blog: Karen B. London
Dogs Who Love Water
They’ll jump in any puddle
While dog sitting for the adorable Marley, I learned that I share an unexpected trait with him: Marley loves water. I found this endearing and it made me feel close to him because I’m the same way. I grew up in LA within sight of the ocean. (If we leaned a certain way in our driveway and the neighbor’s Magnolia tree blew just right, we could see the ocean. We enjoyed joking that our house had...
Blog: Karen B. London
Road Trips with Dogs
Was a good time had by all?
Typical advice for happy travels by car with dogs includes some basics such as having your dog up to date on vaccinations and in good health. It also makes sense to have your dog microchipped and to check on any parasites or diseases that may be common at your destination and take the proper preventive measures. For travel safety, it’s wise to have your dog restrained in the car, perhaps riding...
Blog: Karen B. London
Tangled in the Leash
Awkward, embarrassing and dangerous
Watching a neighbor walk a couple of dogs by my house recently, it appeared more as though the group was attempting a complicated macramé pattern than going on a brisk walk. These sweet dogs were weaving in and out, twisting around my neighbor, their leashes, and each other. One word came to mind: chaos. I’m not picking on the person—just empathizing. I’ve had my share of leash mishaps, and...
Good Dog: Behavior & Training
Why Elite Runners Make Great Dog Trainers
Going the distance
I should have realized right away that something special was going on in a group dog-training session last spring. When I asked the participants to call their dogs to come and then run away, they all did, and with Whippet-like speed. Most people need lots of encouragement to run, and even then — looking sheepish — they tend to take a few half-hearted jogging steps at most. This was no ordinary...
Blog: Karen B. London
Preventing Aggression over Food
A simple approach is often effective
“I’ve been putting my hand in his food while he’s eating since he was a puppy, so he’s never growled at me over his food.” This sort of comment sets my teeth on edge because repeatedly bothering a dog who is eating is actually an effective technique for teaching dogs to behave aggressively around food, NOT a great way to prevent it. Many such dogs start to growl, snap, or bite when someone...
Blog: Karen B. London
Burglar Left His Dog at Crime Scene
That’s how police identified him
It’s Successful Crime 101: Don’t leave anything behind at the scene of a crime. Doing so might give law enforcement just the break they need to come find you and arrest you. It was a violation of this basic tenet that lead to the arrest of a man for alleged burglary. He apparently left his dog behind at a home that had been burglarized. A police officer recognized the dog and had seen him...
Blog: Karen B. London
The Adventures of Salt & Soap at Grand Canyon
It’s a great kids book!
Like most people who live where I do (an hour from Grand Canyon), I consider it part of my backyard and I love stories and art inspired by and about this wonder of the world. In The Adventures of Salt & Soap at Grand Canyon, Park Ranger Lori April Rome narrates the true story describing how two lost puppies became her own dogs. Salt and Soap were just three months old when they were found...
Blog: Karen B. London
Company Offers Pet Burials at Sea
Another sign of love for dogs
How people say good-bye to loved ones is a strong indication of how much they were valued. Meaningful or elaborate ceremonies as well as permanent tributes are ways that people show how important someone was to them. Whether it’s the Egyptian pyramids of Giza, King Tutankhamun’s tomb, the mausoleum that includes the Terra Cotta Army of the Chinese Emperor Qin Shi Huang or the Taj Majal, people...
Blog: Karen B. London
Concerns About Unleashed Dogs
How should we as a community respond?
In Juliana Keeping’s column Hey Ann Arbor—put your dog on a leash. A short one, she writes about bad experiences with off leash dogs. She shares her own stories and those of a few other people and complains angrily about so many dogs being off leash in violation of the laws of her city. The comments in response to the article are highly varied and many are as angry as the original article,...

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