Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Hi there, I’m Jacqui and I am Digital Marketing Manager at Dogs Trust, the UK’s largest dog welfare charity. I’ve been at the Trust for 11 years now and I am glad to be writing for Tenerife Dogs.
A little bit of history, Dogs Trust began in 1891 by Lady Gertrude Stockwell to ‘protect dogs from torture and ill-usage of every kind’
Over 100 years later we still have the same aim. We have a non-destruction policy and rehome 17,000 dogs a year. Though a UK based charity we pride ourselves on offering help to help those overseas with their stray dog populations.
We don’t do this with financial help but by offering help and advice to those who want to start rescues or work with the local authorities to try and change the way it deals with stray dogs.
Our international work started 12 years ago with the very first ICAWC conference (www.icawc.org – website built with my own fair hand!) and it is still going strong with over 300 delegates from as far afield as Australia come to listen and learn how they can change things for the better.
As a regular visitor to Tenerife for the last 20 years or so I have seen the stray cat population shrink. I presume (I don’t know) that this is due to a TNR (trap, neuter and release) program due to the snipped ears of many cats I see. TNR is a great way of controlling the population without taking the animals away from a habitat they understand and causing them unnecessary stress – this is more true in dogs than cats. Many tourists I’m sure think they are doing good by bringing these animals back to the UK, but they are not unhappy, they are more likely to be far more unhappy in a home that is unnatural for them. Then these dogs are left for the UK rescues to care for. But I digress..
Dogs Trust started out with a small programme in Oradea, Romania (www.sosdogs.ro). Which was a TNR scheme and a small rehoming centre. Five years later we have withdrawn and they are now totally self sufficient – a wonderful achievement I’m sure you’ll agree.
This year we set up a scheme in Malta www.dosgtrustmalta.com. Working alongside SPCA Malta, we will create and implement a range of extensive neutering and responsible pet ownership campaigns on the island to tackle the stray dog problem on many levels.
So as you can see even though were a UK charity we are more than happy to share our expertise and advice wherever it is needed – after all the dogs come first!
Monday, September 28, 2009
Whenever I was "bad," you'd shake your finger at me and ask "How could you?" -- but then you'd relent and roll me over for a belly rub.
My housebreaking took a little longer than expected, because you were terribly busy, but we worked on that together. I remember those nights of nuzzling you in bed and listening to your confidences and secret dreams, and I believed that life could not be any more perfect.
We went for long walks and runs in the park, car rides, stops for ice cream (I only got the cone because "ice cream is bad for dogs" you said), and I took long naps in the sun waiting for you to come home at the end of the day.
Gradually, you began spending more time at work and on your career, and more time searching for a human mate. I waited for you patiently, comforted you through heartbreaks and disappointments, never chided you about bad decisions, and romped with glee at your homecomings, and when you fell in love.
She, now your wife, is not a "dog person" -- still I welcomed her into our home, tried to show her affection, and obeyed her. I was happy because you were happy.
Then the human babies came along and I shared your excitement. I was fascinated by their pinkness, how they smelled, and I wanted to mother them, too. Only she and you worried that I might hurt them, and I spent most of my time banished to another room, or to a dog crate. Oh, how I wanted to love them, but I became a prisoner of love."
As they began to grow, I became their friend. They clung to my fur and pulled themselves up on wobbly legs, poked fingers in my eyes, investigated my ears, and gave me kisses on my nose. I loved everything about them and their touch -- because your touch was now so infrequent -- and I would've defended them with my life if need be. I would sneak into their beds and listen to their worries and secret dreams, and together we waited for the sound of your car in the driveway.
There had been a time, when others asked you if you had a dog, that you produced a photo of me from your wallet and told them stories about me. These past few years, you just answered "yes" and changed the subject. I had gone from being "your dog" to "just a dog," and you resented every expenditure on my behalf.
Now, you have a new career opportunity in another city, and you and they will be moving to an apartment that does not allow pets. You've made the right decision for your "family," but there was a time when I was your only family.
I was excited about the car ride until we arrived at the animal shelter. It smelled of dogs and cats, of fear, of hopelessness. You filled out the paperwork and said "I know you will find a good home for her." They shrugged and gave you a pained look. They understand the realities facing a middle-aged dog, even one with "papers."
You had to pry your son's fingers loose from my collar as he screamed, "No, Daddy! Please don't let them take my dog!" And I worried for him, and what lessons you had just taught him about friendship and loyalty, about love and responsibility, and about respect for all life.
You gave me a good-bye pat on the head, avoided my eyes, and politely refused to take my collar and leash with you. You had a deadline to meet and now I have one, too. After you left, the two nice ladies said you probably knew about your upcoming move months ago and made no attempt to find me another good home. They shook their heads and asked "How could you?"
They are as attentive to us here in the shelter as their busy schedules allow. They feed us, of course, but I lost my appetite days ago.
When I realized I could not compete with the frolicking for attention of happy puppies, oblivious to their own fate, I retreated to a far corner and waited. I heard her footsteps as she came for me at the end of the day, and I padded along the aisle after her to a separate room. A blissfully quiet room.
She placed me on the table and rubbed my ears, and told me not to worry. My heart pounded in anticipation of what was to come, but there was also a sense of relief. The prisoner of love had run out of days.
As is my nature, I was more concerned about her. The burden which she bears weighs heavily on her, and I know that, the same way I knew your every mood.
She gently placed a tourniquet around my foreleg as a tear ran down her cheek. I licked her hand in the same way I used to comfort you so many years ago.
She expertly slid the hypodermic needle into my vein. As I felt the sting and the cool liquid coursing through my body, I lay down sleepily, looked into her kind eyes and murmured "How could you?"
Perhaps because she understood my dogspeak, she said "I'm so sorry." She hugged me, and hurriedly explained it was her job to make sure I went to a better place, where I wouldn't be ignored or abused or abandoned, or have to fend for myself --a place of love and light so very different from this earthly place.
And with my last bit of energy, I
A Note from the Author:
If "How Could You?" brought tears to your eyes as you read it, as it did to mine as I wrote it, it is because it is the composite story of the millions of formerly "owned" pets who die each year in American and Canadian animal shelters. Anyone is welcome to distribute the essay for a noncommercial purpose, as long as it is properly attributed with the copyright notice. Please use it to help educate, on your websites, in newsletters, on animal shelter and vet office bulletin boards. Tell the public that the decision to add a pet to the family is an important one for life, that animals deserve our love and sensible care, that finding another appropriate home for your animal is your responsibility and any local humane society or animal welfare league can offer you good advice, and that all life is precious. Please do your part to stop the killing, and encourage all sp
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Budapest hosts the 11th International Companion Animal Welfare Conference
Animal welfare organisations, campaigners and interested individuals from around the world have the opportunity to come together at this year’s International Companion Animal Welfare Conference (ICAWC) which will be taking place in Budapest from 7th to 9th October 2009.
Run by Dogs Trust - the UK’s largest dog welfare charity, ICAWC is the leading conference of its kind. It is held in a different European city each year and provides a platform where delegates working in the field of animal welfare can network, exchange knowledge and gain support from their international contemporaries.
One of the main focus will be on behaviour and training with speakers highlighting the importance of understanding the psychological as well as physical issues in animal welfare. Speakers will discuss different training techniques including the “Tellington Touch”. They will also highlight the behaviour that pets need to be able to express to reduce stress and enhance their emotional wellbeing, suggesting practical ways in which to house, handle and treat companion animals. Speakers include Sarah Fisher from Tellington Touch, Carolyn Menteith from Dog Talk, Claire Bessant from the Feline Advisory Bureau, Dennis Baker OBE from Wood Green Animal Shelters and Steve Goward from Dogs Trust.............
To read rest of article go to the Dogs Trust Website
Saturday, September 19, 2009
Friday, September 18, 2009
Protectapet is a pet insurance company and they are helping K9.
K9 gets paid a commission on all insurance policies that go via K9. So if you are looking for insurance for your pet contact Protectapet. Give them a ring or email, please give REF: SK9. Their website is http://www.protectapet.eu/.
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Sunday, September 13, 2009
Saturday, September 12, 2009
It is best to buy a high quality or premium brand dog food which is usually made from a fixed recipe meaning that each bag contains the correct amount of nutrition required by your dog. Avoid supermarket food if possible and opt for natural or organic food that is free from chemicals and preservatives. You get more for your money with a high quality food because it is denser and not full of cheap ingredients and fillers so therefore your dog fills up quicker and it lasts longer than cheap food. Try to look for a dog food that says Complete or Balanced on the bag. As a general rule, you get what you pay for! Research suggests that feeding dried dog food does have a few more advantages than feeding wet food but it is really down to your personal preference. If you do decide to feed only dried dog food day in and day out, consider it from your dogs point of view! Would you like to eat the same food every single day? A strip of cooked chicken or a few cooked vegetables mixed in can be a nice and healthy treat.
Alternatively, you can give your dog human food consisting of cooked chicken, beef, liver, past, rice, potatoes and vegetables. Obviously this will take a lot more planning and effort on your behalf to ensure your dog gets all the nutrients required.
Some human foods are extremely harmful to dogs. This includes chocolate, fried foods and poultry bones (such as chicken or turkey) to name a few as there are many more out there. Chocolate can be toxic and can kill, while bones can splinter and cause a ripped intestine or life threatening infections. It is now recommended that you never offer your dog raw meat because unfortunately these days we cannot trust that the meat is infection-free in its raw state.
Treats can be given to your dog either during a training session or as good boy reward and it is advisable not to give treats regularly as they can seriously affect your dogs weight and health. Supermarket bought treats are usually full of unhealthy ingredients so maybe offer a small piece of cooked chicken, beef or liver instead.
If you plan to change your dogs diet around it is necessary to do this over a 5-7 day period to allow your dogs intestines to get used to it. Start by mixing a very small amount of the new food with the old food and slowly begin to wean out the old food over the next 5 days or so. Failure to do this can mean uncomfortable stomach cramps for your poor dog and a lovely ugly mess all over your house or lawn…you have been warned!!
Just like humans, you are what you eat! If your dog is a couch potato and doesn’t get much exercise or if your dog is an endless bundle of energy, then its diet needs to be adjusted to reflect that. If you have any questions regarding feeding your dog email me now on
Article written by Sharon Haslam Dog trainer, to contact email
Friday, September 11, 2009
click here to read more of this emotional tale
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Sunday, September 6, 2009
The story of how a Labrador dog helped an injured Gulf War veteran rebuild his life is to become a film.
Endal, who died aged 13 in March, looked after Allen Parton, an ex-Royal Navy Chief Petty Officer, who suffered serious injuries in 1991.