Posts Tagged ‘German Shepherd Dog’
The incredible power of smell that dogs have.
Regular readers will know that I subscribe to the blog Naked Capitalism masterminded by Yves Smith. Some time ago, there was a link on NK to a story about how a tiny Chihuahua dog rescued some missing girls. It seemed like a good opportunity to take a closer look at this most magical aspect of a dog’s qualities.
First to that story.
I saw it on the Care2 website, from which I quote the following:
Hero Chihuahua Finds Missing Girls in the Woods
by Kristina Chew August 2, 2012
A 3-year-old chihuahua named Bell is an unexpected hero after finding three young girls who became lost for hours in the woods in Newnan, Georgia, on Monday.
CBS Atlanta reports that, on Monday, 8-year-old Carlie and 5-year-old Lacey Parga went for a walk with their dog Lucy down a cul-de-sac on trails near their neighborhood.
What started as a casual stroll became an unintended, and at times frightening, experience. As Carlie tells CBS, ‘”We tried to find our way out of the woods. We kept following paths and stuff and we got lost.” Indeed, they became scared that they were only to get more and more lost.
Carlie’s father, David Parga, noted that it wasn’t characteristic of them to wander off and, after searching for them but not hearing them respond, he contacted police and firefighters. Neighbors joined them including Carvin Young who thought to take Bell, who plays with the girls every day and knew their scent. Bell was able to lead searchers to the girls.
So what is it about the nose of the dog? A dog has more than 220 million olfactory receptors in its nose, while humans have only five million, making dogs’ sense of smell a thousand times greater. Frankly, trying to get one’s intellect around precisely what having a sense of smell one thousand times greater than a human means is tough! So on to another story.
17 Dogs, 3 Generations, 70 Years.
There’s one constant…
…the family dog.
After moving to Wellesley, Massachusetts for an anchor job with a major television sports network, Kevin began taking his German Shepherd, Beverly, for walks in the surrounding neighborhoods. They developed a route that included historic Atwood Street. Beverly kept veering toward one house in particular that had also caught Kevin’s eye previously, thinking it looked familiar but not knowing the reason.
After talking to a close family relative who had also once lived in Wellesley, Kevin was shocked to discover that the memorable house had once been a childhood home to his father, Bob Walsh, before WWII. After digging through old family photos that had been tucked away for years, Kevin uncovered a picture of his father as a toddler with his family on the house’s front porch, complete with their first family dog, Dee Dee.
Kevin’s father had been writing short stories about all of their family dogs through the years, but never knew about the photo. Its discovery was the pivotal moment that offered proof that the Walsh family’s journey with dogs had come back to the exact place where it started.
They’ve turned this story, along with other dog tales, into a book called Follow the Dog Home: How a Simple Walk Unleashed an Incredible Family Journey.
Dog’s nose leads family to back long lost old home, site unseen. German Shepherd, Beverly, is chronicled on WCVB TV’s news magazine show Chronicle. 70 years later, the family goes back “home” for stunning reunion and photograph.
A lovely guest Post from author Dianne Gray.
Dianne was unaware when she contacted me that her timing was exquisite! Why? Because it had recently crossed my mind that many readers must wonder why a blog with the name of Learning from Dogs so infrequently had articles about dogs! Hopefully both the Welcome page and my piece on Dogs and integrity make it clear that it is the qualities of dogs, the examples they set to mankind, that inspire these writings. As I say in Dogs and integrity,
- are integrous ( a score of 210) according to Dr David Hawkins
- don’t cheat or lie
- don’t have hidden agendas
- are loyal and faithful
- love unconditionally
- value and cherish the ‘present’ in a way that humans can only dream of achieving
- are, by eons of time, a more successful species than man.
So it is a double pleasure to offer Dianne’s guest post today because it reminds us, so clearly, that the qualities of dogs are something very real for mankind.
Dianne is a writer. As she explains on her blog site,
I live in Australia, have a sensitive-new-age Rottweiler called Kitty and a German Shepherd (in desperate need for The Dog Whisperer) called Sabre.
I’ve had interesting jobs, including working in a crocodile farm in Far North Queensland.
My web page can be found at http://www.diannegray.au.com/
Sabre came into our lives in November 2004. He was seven weeks old. We were lucky enough to get Sabre from Bob Knight, a German shepherd breeder in Canberra, Australia. For those of you who don’t live in Australia you wouldn’t know that Bob was tragically shot and killed in 2010 while driving his truck through Sydney – the innocent victim of a gang war taking place several blocks away, he was hit by a stray bullet.
Bob was very passionate about his dogs and would interview those who were interested in buying one of the litter. If he didn’t think you were capable of managing a German shepherd he would not sell you one. He also ensured that each and every one of his puppies were brought back to him weekly (if possible) for free puppy training. So for over twelve months we (and the others who had bought one of the litter) met at the lake to take our dogs for a walk and training.
We live in the inner city and have an enormous yard so Sabre loved playing catch and patrolling the borders of our property. We live adjacent to a laneway and had some trouble with junkies shooting up near our fence and threatening to kill him if he barked at them. When he was two years old he became very ill very suddenly (it was Good Friday and near impossible to find a vet). We took him to the out-of-hours vet in the city who just looked at him and ($A800 later) told us not to feed him for the rest of the weekend.
By Saturday morning he could hardly move. We called Bob who told us about a woman called Jan who would be available to see him who lived in a nearby town. She was a country vet and looked after horses and cattle – so we loaded him in the car. This was the best move we ever made because, as it turned out, Jan would save his life a couple of times. When Jan saw him she couldn’t believe another vet would tell us not to feed him. “You don’t feed animals, they die,” she said. She gave us some horse paste (I still don’t know to this day what it was) and told us to put some in his mouth every hour. She said to try and give him his favourite food as often as possible and to call her every hour and tell her if he had eaten anything. She said he had the classic symptoms of having ingested a common bait (I’m not revealing what it was publically) and if we couldn’t get him to eat within four hours we had to bring him straight back to her. Basically he was starving to death.
We put the paste in his mouth as often as possible and tried to tempt him with cheese (his favourite) for three hours. Finally, he took a small mouthful of cheese and we celebrated like it was Christmas! We took him back to Jan for the next three days and he got stronger and stronger and within a week was back to his old playful self.
Twelve months later he began to walk with his head to one side and then he’d shake it and basically seemed very uncomfortable. We took him back to Jan who looked in his ear to find he had a chronic ear infection. She gave him antibiotics and cleaned his ear, but weeks passed and it just didn’t want to budge. We took him back to Jan every weekend and she would clean his ear (he wouldn’t let us touch it) and give him a penicillin injection. I surfed the net trying to find out what I could do to get rid of this damn infection – we were trying everything possible and it still wouldn’t budge. Then I read somewhere that yoghurt in a dog’s diet can be good for this kind of thing. I added yoghurt to his diet and within a week he was looking better. We still had him back to Jan’s every weekend for a few months and I still put yoghurt in his diet!
Six months later he started to change and became obnoxious and aggressive with us. We thought it may have had something to do with the ear infection so we took him back to Jan. She laid him on his back and felt his testies. He was kind of shocked and so were we, but she had definitely done the right thing because at this stage he had testicular cancer in both testies. She operated and found that the cancer was at the advanced stage. She was pretty sure she had got it all, but told us the signs to watch for over the next few months. She put him on ‘girly hormones’ as she called them and he was on those for about twelve months – and what a pleasure he became. He was behaving himself and not cranky or aggressive like before the operation. He was a different boy! If you have a male dog that is not de-sexed and he becomes even the slightest bit aggressive, I strongly suggest you have him checked for testicular cancer!
Because we’d had so much trouble with the junkies I decided to get cameras around the outside of the house. It was such a novelty at first – I’d come home from work and check the cameras to see what had happened during the day, but then I noticed something really sad. Sabre would say goodbye to me at the gate every morning and then just sit there ALL DAY waiting for me to come home. It was heartbreaking, I’d never realised until this time how lonely he was. I’d watch the tape on X30 and it reminded me of one of those television advertisements where someone stands still while everything around them speeds past. So hubby and I decided it was time for another dog. This is where Kitty comes into the picture. From the moment Sabre saw her he absolutely loved her and she loved him. She is obsessed with his tail and when we go anywhere she grips onto his tail and follows him.
Sometimes when they’re playing in the yard she grabs his tail and runs past him so fast he ends up running sideways! Kitty has had her fair share of problems as well. She was spade (by a vet other than Jan because she doesn’t have the capacity or equipment to spade female pups) and three months later she went on heat! I took her back to the other vet and he had only removed one ovary. So she had to be spade again, the poor darling. Meanwhile, Sabre must have had enough male hormones left in him to want to mount her every five minutes. So what I did was rub eucalyptus oil on Kitty’s back and this was enough to keep him away (the smell made him sneeze). Now we find Kitty has arthritis (she’s only fifteen months old) so we’re back to see Jan every other weekend for treatment. We’re kind of like a family now!
Kitty and Sabre are a wonderful pair and now when I watch the cameras when I get home from work all I can see is the two of them playing all day long. It’s a wonderful life!
So back to me! Couple of items to close this lovely story from Dianne.
Firstly, a photograph of these caring owners:
So true -
“Writing has nothing to do with publishing. Nothing. People get totally confused about that. You write because you have to – you write because you can’t not write. The rest is show-business. I can’t state that too strongly. Just write – worry about the rest of it later, if you worry at all. What matters is what happens to you while you’re writing the story, the poem, the play. The rest is show-business.” — Peter S. Beagle
Learning from Dogs is three years old this day.
Ironically, we are away this day but here are the ‘stats’ from yesterday, the 14th:
594,721 individual viewings
An average of 1,300 readers a day (and still growing!)
3,705 comments in this period
Nearly 1,372 posts since the start
It seems a rather trite thing to say but, trust me, this is said from the bottom of my heart. All of you who come to Learning from Dogs, whether just a couple of times or most days, have made this a wonderfully creative three years for me.
THANK YOU ALL!
And now here’s a republication of that very first post back on July 15th, 2009.
Parenting lessons from Dogs
Much too late to make me realise the inadequacies of my own parenting skills, I learnt an important lesson when training my GSD (who is called Pharaoh, by the way). That is that putting more emphasis into praise and reward for getting it right ‘trains’ the dog much quicker than telling it off. The classic example is scolding a dog for running off when it should be lots of hugs and praise for returning home. The scolding simply teaches the dog that returning home isn’t pleasant whereas praise reinforces that home is the place to be. Like so many things in life, very obvious once understood!
Absolutely certain that it works with youngsters just the same way.
Despite being a very dominant dog, Pharaoh showed his teaching ability when working with other dogs. In the UK there is an amazing woman, Angela Stockdale, who has proved that dogs (and horses) learn most effectively when being taught by other dogs (and horses). Pharaoh was revealed to be a Beta Dog, (i.e. second in status below the Alpha Dog) and, therefore, was able to use his natural pack instinct to teach puppy dogs their social skills and to break up squabbles within a pack.
When you think about it, don’t kids learn much more (often to our chagrin!) from other kids than they do from their parents. Still focusing on giving more praise than punishment seems like a much more effective strategy.
As was read somewhere, Catch them in the act of doing Right!
By Paul Handover.
A rather overdue posting.
Back on April 2nd this year, I posted a piece called I am your dog! The item was motivated by coming across a personal reflection of the relationship that I had, and still have, with Pharaoh, my German Shepherd dog, back in 2007 when I was still living in England; I met Jean in Mexico Christmas 2007!
Among the many comments was one from Perfect Stranger who writes the fabulous blog Dogs of Doubt. He said in his comment,
Hi Paul, I do believe this comment belongs on this post … two videos, part of a true story about an Aussie dog, a modern day “Dog on the Tucker Box”, a true blue friend to an entire town who eventually ended up building him a statue … yeah, not “it” but “HIM”.
First video shows you how tough Aussies animals are ,, watch the fight, it’s awesome, I laugh every time I watch it. they say it really happened.
Second video is the trailer for “Red Dog” – The Pilbara Wanderer! , hope you get to see the movie
I promised to make that comment a post all on it’s own right – then promptly forgot! So apologies and here are those two movies.
With big thanks to Rich S. for forwarding these to me – enjoy!
And a little closer to home ….
A picture of Pharaoh as a young puppy in the arms of Sandra Tucker, the owner of Jutone, German Shepherd breeders in Devon, SW England.
Compared to a picture of Cleo as a young puppy in the arms of Jean here in Payson.
And closing with a picture of Cleo taken yesterday.
Now 19 days since our young German Shepherd puppy joined us.
On the 9th April, I wrote a Post about the arrival of young Cleo who became part of our family on the 8th. Here’s a couple of photographs from that Post.
So here are a couple more taken yesterday afternoon, the 25th. Cleo was weighed last Monday and was 28 lbs, some 6 lbs gain since the 8th.
Must say that Cleo has settled in very well with her other four pack mates. Indeed, Cleo, like Sweeny, mixes easily with all the other dogs, not just Pharaoh’s group.
Taking a rest from the serious stuff!
The first picture comes from Merci O. from here in Payson.
The next two are from the camera of ‘yours truly’.
Cleo has settled in so beautifully and we can’t believe that these two weeks have gone so quickly.
Finally, talking of settling in, our five young chicks have reached the stage where they could be housed outside in their new chicken house, the move taking place just five days ago.
The arrival of Cleo brings us back to eleven dogs.
Way back in 2003 when I became the proud ‘Dad’ of Pharaoh, my German Shepherd dog that you see on the home page of Learning from Dogs, Sandra Tucker who ran the GSD Breeders Jutone, where Pharaoh was born, gave me some advice. Sandra said that when Pharaoh was getting on in life, then bring in a German Shepherd puppy. Apparently, there were two solid reasons why this made sense. The first was that Pharaoh would teach the new puppy many of the skills and disciplines that Pharaoh had learnt as a young dog and, secondly, the puppy would keep Pharaoh active.
Now we know this to be true because years later when Pharaoh had his own mini pack here in Payson, we introduced a new ‘rescue’ puppy called Sweeny. Pharaoh took an instant like to him and became very tolerant to Sweeny’s ‘games’.
But as adorable as Sweeny is, Jean understood the deep reasons why I always wanted a German Shepherd in our lives. So when a chance encounter in Payson Feed Store between Jean and Brendon S. revealed that Brendon had a litter of German Shepherd puppies for sale, just a couple of miles outside Payson, the temptation was irresistible!
Thus a few days ago, Jean and I went round to Brendon’s home and spent a couple of hours mingling with the puppies and their GSD mother. They all looked excellent dogs and a review of their blood lines showed that their genetic background included German stock not too far back. It was difficult to select any one pup as they were all wonderful animals. But one youngster seemed to catch Jean’s eye.
Then the next test was to introduce Pharaoh to the puppies. That took place last Friday and it was wonderful to see how well he coped with the onslaught of puppies!
In the end, we ran out of reasons not to follow Sandra’s advice from all those years ago and we agreed terms on a young female GSD that, inevitably, was christened Cleopatra (Cleo) by Jean!
Then yesterday, Saturday, we went back round to collect young Cleo, meeting Brendan’s wife Ebony in the process. The following photographs record some of the key moments.
So there we are. Back up to eleven dogs, five chickens, six cats, and a fish!
Finally, a big thanks to Sandra of Jutone for her guidance in the last few days.
A story about the bond between a dog and a human.
I was clearing my desk yesterday (yet again) and came across an article that I wrote in 2007. It’s a message of love; the love of a dog for a human. But before going to that article, look at the photo below. It’s a wonderful example of the joy of having Pharaoh in my life. It was taken in July 2006 at the airfield in Devon, SW England, where a group of us shared a Piper Super Cub, about which I wrote in Learning from Dogs in August 2009.
If you think Pharaoh is smiling, I’m not going to argue with you. First time in the Cub, first time strapped in to the rear seat, everything utterly strange and Pharaoh is clearly more joyful than the pilot!
Anyway, to the article. I wrote it in September, 2007, based on something that was sent to me from an unknown author, and modified to reflect the special relationship that I had, and still have, with my then four-year-old German Shepherd, Pharaoh.
I am your dog and have something I would love to whisper in your ear.
I am your dog and have something I would love to whisper in your ear.
I know that you humans lead busy lives. Some have to work, some have children to raise, some have to do this alone. It always seems like you are running here and there, often much too fast, often never noticing the truly grand things in life.
Look down at me now. See the way my dark brown eyes look at yours.
You smile at me. I see love in your eyes. What do you see in mine? Do you see a spirit? A soul inside, who loves you as no other could in the world? A spirit that would forgive all trespasses of prior wrongdoing for just a simple moment of your time?
That is all I ask. To slow down, if even for a few minutes, and be with me.
So many times, you have been saddened by others of my kind, passing on. Sometimes we die young and oh so quickly, so suddenly it wrenches your heart out of your throat. Sometimes, we age so slowly before your eyes that you may not even seem to know until the very end, when we look at you with grizzled muzzles and cataract-clouded eyes. Still the love is always there, even when we must take that last long sleep dreaming of running free in a distant, open land.
I may not be here tomorrow. I may not be here next week. Someday you will shed the water from your eyes, that humans have when grief fills their souls, and you will mourn the loss of just ‘one more day’ with me. Because I love you so, this future sorrow even now touches my spirit and grieves me. I read you in so many ways that you cannot even start to contemplate.
We have now together. So come and sit next to me here on the floor and look deep into my eyes. Do you see how if you look deeply at me we can talk, you and I, heart to heart. Come not to me as my owner but as a living soul. Stroke my fur and let us look deep into the other’s eyes and talk with our hearts.
I may tell you something about the fun of working the scents in the woods where you and I go. Or I may tell you something profound about myself or how we dogs see life in general. I know you decided to have me in your life because you wanted a soul to share things with. I know how much you have cared for me and always stood up for me even when others have been against me. I know how hard you have worked to help me to be the teacher that I was born to be. That gift from you has been very precious to me. I know too that you have been through troubled times and I have been there to guard you, to protect you, to be there for you always.
I am very different to you but here I am. I am a dog but just as alive as you.
I feel emotion. I feel physical senses. I can revel in the differences of our spirits and souls. I do not think of you as a dog on two feet; I know what you are. You are human, in all of your quirkiness, and I love you still.
So come sit with me on the floor. Enter my world and let time slow down if only for a few minutes. Look deep into my eyes and whisper in my ears. Speak with your heart and I will know your true self.
We may not have tomorrow but we do have now.
Just three months after writing the above, on December 17th, 2007, I flew in to Hemosillo Airport in Mexico to spend Christmas with Suzann, sister of dear friend Dan Gomez, and her husband Don down in the coastal town of San Carlos. That’s when I met Jean, leading to me and Jean falling in love. Jean then came to England and I came back to Mexico in June, 2008. In September, 2008 Pharaoh and I left England permanently and travelled out to San Carlos to be with Jean and her dogs. In February, 2010, Jean and I, Pharaoh and twelve other dogs, and six cats all moved to Payson, Arizona.
In November, 2010 Jean and I were married. So the miracle for me and Pharaoh is that when I wrote that piece back in 2007 this most beautiful future was yet to unfold. I never miss a day when I don’t, “… come sit with me on the floor. Enter my world and let time slow down if only for a few minutes. Look deep into my eyes and whisper in my ears. Speak with your heart and I will know your true self.” Now not just with Pharaoh but with Hazel, Dhalia, Sweeny, Casey, Loopy, Lilly, Ruby, and all the other beautiful dog souls.
Dear friend Dan Gomez sent this to me on the 9th but I split it into two parts, covering yesterday and today. Then found that the first part didn’t Post correctly; the pictures were missing.
So both parts are today – enjoy!
Part One: How many dogs does it take to change a light bulb?
1. Golden Retriever: The sun is shining, the day is young, we’ve got our whole lives ahead of us,
and you’re inside worrying about a stupid burned out bulb?
2. Border Collie: Just one. And then I’ll replace any wiring that’s not up to code.
3. Dachshund: You know I can’t reach that stupid lamp!
4. Rottweiler: Make me!
5. Boxer: Who cares? I can still play with my squeaky toys in the dark.
6. Lab: Oh, me, me!!!!! Pleeeeeeeeeze let me change the light bulb!
Can I? Can I? Huh? Huh? Huh? Can I? Pleeeeeeeeeze, please, please, please!
7. German Shepherd: I’ll change it as soon as I’ve led these people from the dark,
check to make sure I haven’t missed any, and make just one more
perimeter patrol to see that no one has tried to take advantage of the situation!
8. Jack Russell Terrier: I’ll just pop it in while I’m bouncing off the walls and furniture.
9. Old English Sheep Dog: Light bulb? I’m sorry, but I don’t see a light bulb!
10. Cocker Spaniel: Why change it? I can still pee on the carpet in the dark.
11. Chihuahua : Yo quiero Taco Bulb. Or “We don’t need no stinking light bulb.”
12. Greyhound: It isn’t moving. Who cares?
13. Australian Cattle Dog:First, I’ll put all the light bulbs in a little circle…
14. Poodle: I’ll just blow in the Border Collie’s ear and he’ll do it.
By the time he finishes rewiring the house, my nails will be dry.
How many cats does it take to change a light bulb?
Cats do not change light bulbs. People change light bulbs.
So, the real question is: ”How long will it be before I can expect some light, some dinner, and a massage?”
ALL OF WHICH PROVES, ONCE AGAIN, THAT WHILE DOGS HAVE MASTERS, CATS HAVE STAFF!
Part Two: Why God made pets!
They help out around the house…
They protect our children…
They “converse” with each other.
NOW PASS IT ON, AND MAKE SOMEONE ELSE SMILE!!!
Big thank-you, Dan, but more to the point a big thanks to ‘SKF’ who sent it to you.