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The Results: Dogs vs. Cats

A very cool survey was done by the American Veterinary Association that looked at the preference of dogs or cats in the U.S. and around the world. This was done by observing how many cats and dogs were owned in each state and country. Many countries had predominant preferences, South American being mostly dog owners and the Middle East being most cat owners. The United States proved to slightly favor the canines, but overall seemed pretty equal. Here are the results for the states that boasted the most predominately dog or cat households, broken down by Washington Post:

Dogs:

Rank State Cats Dogs Ratio, dogs to cats
1 Arkansas 810,000 1,097,000 1.35
2 New Mexico 533,000 703,000 1.32
3 Texas 5,565,000 7,163,000 1.29
4 Oklahoma 1,041,000 1,327,000 1.27
5 Louisiana 877,000 1,115,000 1.27
6 Mississippi 668,000 846,000 1.27
7 Arizona 1,438,000 1,798,000 1.25
8 Tennessee 1,749,000 2,157,000 1.23
9 Missouri 1,653,000 1,978,000 1.20
10 Georgia 2,162,000 2,479,000 1.15

 

Cats:

Rank State Cats Dogs Ratio, cats to dogs
1 Massachusetts 1,593,000 850,000 1.87
2 Maryland 1,677,000 915,000 1.83
3 Maine 498,000 300,000 1.66
4 Vermont 234,000 142,000 1.65
5 Connecticut 796,000 507,000 1.57
6 District of Columbia 63,000 42,000 1.50
7 New Hampshire 309,000 212,000 1.46
8 Pennsylvania 3,544,000 2,485,000 1.43
9 New York 4,261,000 3,054,000 1.40
10 Ohio 3,786,000 2,730,000 1.39
 

 

 

       

 

 -Jenna Gomes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So, is your state a cat state or a dog state?

Posted in: Blog, breeds, cats, dogs, dogs and cats

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Breed Feature – Cocker Spaniel

cocker spaniel

I have always wondered about the different quirks of different dog breeds, so once a week, we’ll try to do a breed feature where we explore different breeds! In honor of my dog, Herbie, and Fresh Patch’s mascot, Chloe, we’ll make the first feature on their breed: Cocker Spaniel.

Cocker Spaniels are medium-sized dogs that average 15 inches tall and 26 pounds. These dogs are, in every sense, a companion dog. They are known for being extremely happy, energetic and compassionate. Cockers are extremely cuddly and will be a lap dog, but also have endless amounts of energy to run around with the kids out in the yard.

Cocker Spaniels, though adorable, require lots of training and patience. Their easily excitable and curious personality can get them into trouble. One of their more famous quirks to have patience with is emptying their bladder when they’re excited, like when you come home after being away for an hour or two. They are also very time intensive when it comes to grooming – which is very important! Good grooming can keep them comfortable and cleaning their ears on a regular basis will help fight ear infections.

Cockers truly are a family dog!

Fun Fact: Cocker Spaniels are the smallest breed of the AKC Sporting Group.

Posted in: Blog, breeds, cocker spaniel, Dogs, dogs, perfect dog

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Can Dogs Get Jealous?

Recently, there was a study published in PLOS ONE that showed your furry friends might get just as jealous as your human friends! Psychologists adapted a test that originally involved infants so it could measure jealousy in dogs.

The test involved putting the dogs in a room with their owners. The owners were instructed to talk sweetly and pet an object in the room, either a jack o’ lantern or a stuffed dog, but ignore their dog. When the owners petted the stuffed animal, 75% of the dogs pushed and nudged their owners. They also growled at the stuffed animal and tried to get between the stuffed dog and their owner. The dogs were less responsive to the jack o’ lanterns, though 40% did act aggressively and growl when their owners started petting the pumpkin.

However, this isn’t a definitive answer on if dogs can feel jealousy. While it is possible that the dogs were jealous that their owners weren’t paying attention to them, it is also possible that the dogs were simply wary of the other objects and got aggressive out of fear.

But just in case, don’t pay too much attention to that cute poodle down the street, your mutt might get jealous!

-Jenna Gomes

 

Posted in: Blog, dogs

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Want to Find Your Lost Dog?… There’s an App for That!

A new smartphone app called “Finding Rover” can make the process of finding your missing pooch much easier. You can download the app and take a picture of your dog. The picture will be uploaded to a database that all others with the app can access. If anyone with the app has found your dog, they can take a picture and it will match right up with yours, providing you the information on the whereabouts of Rover. Those with the app will get notifications when there are lost dogs in their area, and if your dog is missing, you’ll automatically be emailed if a picture match is found.

Now, this isn’t an automatic win. As an owner of a so-called “dumb phone”, it’s disappointing that I myself can’t download this app. In order for it to be effective enough, there would need to be a lot of people downloading it. However, shelters are starting to pick up this app as well, which greatly increases your chances.

Either way, it doesn’t hurt to try it! You’ll thank yourself once it helps you find your pooch!

 

-Jenna Gomes

Posted in: Blog, dogs, Finding Rover, Lost dog, phone

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The Right Dog for Your Cat

I love all things furry, scaly or feathery so once I live on my own and say goodbye to Herbie, the family pooch, I will want to adopt my own dog that will get along with other animals, specifically cats. In anticipation of this, I did some research on the most feline-friendly dog breeds (and the not-so-feline-friendly ones.)

Feline-Friendly:

Beagle – They were bred as hunters, and do a little chasing in the yard, but are known to be gentle and the best of friends with feline buddies inside the house.

Boxer – These dogs love cats and will wrestle with them, sling their paws around them, and play with them. Just make sure you have a tough cat who wants to wrestle back!

Bichon Frise – Since these little guys are so, well, little, they see a cat as just another friend and playmate!

Golden Retrievers – By far the gentlest dog when it comes to your cat. This breed is known to love families, and to them, your cat is part of the family!

Maltese – These tiny dogs aren’t necessarily friendly with cats, instead, they’ll just ignore them. So if you’re looking for a complete neutrality, go for this breed.

 

Breeds Not For Your Cat:

Saluki – These dogs are graceful and really quite beautiful, but were bred as hunters that were trained to chase after… guess what… cats.

Smooth Fox Terrier – These little guys are very active and might pounce on your kitty one too many times with their characteristic “high prey dive.”

Schipperke – His hunting skills might be used wrongly on your cat.

Bluetick Coonhound – These guys have instincts to hunt raccoons and small animals, possibly including your cat.

Whippet – These race dogs will chase anything small!

Afghan Hounds – This breed in particular, having been bred to hunts wolves and even snow leopards, has a very strong interest in chasing cats.

Australian Cattle Dog – Another dog with a high prey drive like the Smooth Fox Terrier.

Standard Schnauzer – This little guy has a high prey instinct.

 

Remember, this doesn’t mean to stereotype these breeds! It’s all dependent on specific personalities, and training. This is just somewhere to start.

 

-Jenna Gomes

Posted in: Blog, breeds, cats, Dog safety, dogs and cats

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Not Just Police Dogs, Arson Dogs!

As we all know from television shows, movies, maybe even real life, there are plenty of K9 police units out there who use trained pups as their method of locating missing people or crime scene evidence. Firefighting dogs work actively alongside their firefighter partners to help rescue people from smoky situations. But what’s little known is that these two units came together to form a squad of arson dogs. These dogs use their sniffers to detect the tiniest drops of flammable liquid that their human counterparts can’t necessarily find. These dogs not only help to determine whether or not a fire was an accident or purposeful, but they can also help find the perpetrators by sniffing liquid evidence from the scene on their perpetrators themselves.

These dogs are remarkable, ready to go out to work in the field after only one month of training! And as a reward for their hard work, they get praise and treats, all they really need to get their tails wagging!

It’s just a little reminder of how remarkable (and crime-solving) dogs can be.

 

-Jenna Gomes

Posted in: Blog, crime-solving, Dog safety, Dog Training, dogs, K9, police dog

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Open Your Heart to Deaf Dogs

I will admit that as a 21-year-old adult, I still watch some pretty cheesy ABC Family channel shows, one of those being Switched at Birth. It’s addicting! By having a deaf main character, watching it has actually made me more aware of Deaf culture, and it got me thinking about deaf dogs.

Finding out your dog is deaf can seem like an impossible challenge to tackle, but it really isn’t. Deaf dogs can be trained just as well as hearing dogs, and truthfully, just as easily! You just have to remember not to use your voice or other sounds as commands. Try sign language to communicate with them. It doesn’t have to be ASL, but you can invent your own simple signs meaning different things like “walk”, “sit”, “stay”, etc. Just like voice commands, they will catch on!

So what can you do? Deaf dogs still have their other five senses, so you can rely on those to get their attention. What you don’t necessarily want to do is touch them to get their attention because this can startle them and might have bad consequences. Try flickering the lights or stomping on the floor.

Give deaf dogs a chance, the only thing that makes them different from the pooch next to them at the humane society is they have one less sense. But that doesn’t make their heart any smaller!

 

-Jenna Gomes

Posted in: Blog, Deaf, Dog Training, dogs, hearing impaired, House Training

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How to Give Your Dog a Better Reward

Recently, there was a study done in Sweden that analyzed just how excited dogs got about rewards given certain circumstances. The furry test subjects were put in two groups: test and control. The test dogs were trained to complete a task, like playing a key on the piano or pressing a lever. A week later, if they completed those tasks successfully, they would be given one of three rewards: food, human contact, or doggy contact. The control dog was given a reward just for walking into the test room.

All in all, it was observed that the dogs who completed the task before getting a reward were more excited to receive the award, showing more energy and tail wagging than the dogs who received the reward despite not doing anything. (Not surprisingly, all dogs were most excited by the reward of food.)

Next time you want to give your dog a treat, have them complete a little task first, whether it just be rolling over or maybe even playing a little piano! They’ll love the reward even more.

 

-Jenna Gomes

Posted in: Blog, Crate Training, Dog Training, dogs, House Training, Pee Pads, Puppy Training

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How to Curb Your Dog’s Weight Gain

Most dog owners have encountered the problem of their dog packing on a few extra pounds. Sometimes, though, a few extra pounds can turn into a lot, and to control your dog’s weight suddenly seems impossible.

It’s not! Dogs lose weight the exact way humans do, by burning more calories per day than they consume. If you are serious about starting this doggy weight-loss journey, you will need to weigh them to find out how much they weigh, and just how much they should lose. Look up the ideal weight for your dog’s breed, and if they are a mutt, go by their size/dominant breed.

Dogfoodadvisor.com has a handy calculator to help you figure out how much food your dog should be consuming daily to get to their ideal weight. You can find it here: http://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/dog-feeding-tips/dog-food-calculator/

The key to not overfeeding your dog is using an exact measurement every time you feed them. And never feed them by free choice – meaning you keep the food bowl full until it’s empty. Two to four small measured portions a day will restrict how much your dog eats and assure they don’t get too hungry. Don’t overdo treats either – this can sometimes be the snack that pushes them past that ideal weight.

Make sure your dogs get exercise! One walk a day will do all the difference, or letting them run around the yard.

Take your dog’s weight seriously; it can lead to a host of health problems that have them living a shorter and less enjoyable life.

For a list of recommended dog foods for weight loss, go here: http://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/best-dog-foods/weight-loss-dog-foods/

 

-Jenna Gomes

Posted in: Blog, Dog Health, dogs, Ideal weight

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Hero Spotlight Sunday – Belle

sudnay

This week’s spotlight shines on Belle, a beagle from Ocoee, Florida whose quick thinking and grand application of her training saved her owner’s life.

Belle’s owner is Kevin Weaver, a diabetic man who knew that someday, Belle might need to help him out of a bad situation. Not only was Belle trained to use her keen doggy nose to alert her owner when his blood sugar was low, but she was even trained to dial the number “9” on his phone that would call 911. So when Weaver collapsed into a diabetic seizure one day, Belle came to the rescue. She bit down on his phone to call the police. All the dispatchers said they heard was barking, and they send help right away. Weaver recovered, admitting he wouldn’t be alive if it weren’t for the brave beagle.

Belle even received the VITA Wireless Samaritan Award (an award given out to those who use wireless phones to help others in emergencies), and is the first ever animal to receive it.

Well, done Belle!

- Jenna Gomes

 

 

Posted in: Blog, Dog Health, dogs, House Training

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