Welcome!

Beloved Pharaoh. Born: June 3rd., 2003 – Died: June 19th., 2017. A very special dog that will never be forgotten.

Dogs live in the present – they just are!  Dogs make the best of each moment uncluttered by the sorts of complex fears and feelings that we humans have. They don’t judge, they simply take the world around them at face value.  Yet they have been part of man’s world for an unimaginable time, at least 30,000 years.  That makes the domesticated dog the longest animal companion to man, by far!

As man’s companion, protector and helper, history suggests that dogs were critically important in man achieving success as a hunter-gatherer.  Dogs ‘teaching’ man to be so successful a hunter enabled evolution, some 20,000 years later, to farming,  thence the long journey to modern man.  But in the last, say 100 years, that farming spirit has become corrupted to the point where we see the planet’s plant and mineral resources as infinite.  Mankind is close to the edge of extinction, literally and spiritually.

Dogs know better, much better!  Time again for man to learn from dogs!

Welcome to Learning from Dogs

The power of great nutrition.

Talk about having one’s eyes fully opened! Hopefully!

On the 16th I published a post under the title of The Power of Good Food.

It primarily featured a short video from the home page of Colin Potter’s Fight Parkinson’s website. That video explained how a strict regime of the right food and supported by supplements had made an incredible difference to his health, effectively putting his PD into remission.

Or in Colin’s words:

I am Colin Potter and I have a Parkinson’s diagnosis.

Only there’s one difference between me and virtually all other people with Parkinson’s

I no longer suffer from its symptoms. I don’t take conventional medications.
You’d hardly know I had Parkinson’s.
How is this possible?

I’m not a doctor, I’m just an ordinary bloke diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2011 who just didn’t like what he was being told by his doctors; that his condition was incurable and his health would go into permanent decline.
So, I started my own research, and found thousands of authoritative research studies that:

  • Showed that Parkinson’s mostly had its origins in our lifestyle and environment
  • Revealed the possible, specific causes behind Parkinson’s
  • Promoted the actions I could take to fix the problem
  • Allowed me to cease levodopa medication

I then made the necessary changes to my lifestyle and diet and here I am, two+ years later, healthy and recovered.

I know many of you will find it hard to dedicate a measurable amount of ‘viewing’ time to this post but that doesn’t stop me from recommending a subsequent video.

Namely, a longer (32 minutes) interview of Colin Potter that really explains his transformation

There’s even more to share with you but Jeannie and I have made a fundamental decision.  That is that before we go any further it is only right that we seek the views of a local nutritionist in nearby Grants Pass.

We need to be certain that the major changes that we are planning in terms of diet and supplement intake are supported by local, qualified persons.

We will share those findings with you very soon.

But it does cross my mind that the following should be included in this post.

We do not offer advice and nothing on any website, email or any other communication is intended to treat, diagnose, prevent or cure any disease. It is not a substitute for consulting your doctor. You should consult a doctor for diagnosis of conditions, before beginning any diet, exercise or supplementation or if you suspect you have any health issue. You should not stop medication without consulting your doctor.

No room for being wrong!

Getting to the truth of what is or is not good for our dogs.

As many will understand so very often I am acting more as a messenger than an authoritative source in this place. It is very difficult for me, almost impossible indeed, for me to verify the validity of what is posted here.

On January 11th, I published a guest post from Kathreen Miller. Her article was called Is Organic Food Really Good For Your Dog To Eat?

Yesterday, local good friend and neighbour, Jim Goodbrod, sent me an email pointing out a number of weaknesses in Kathreen’s article and giving me permission to republish what he wrote as a post on Learning from Dogs.

Jim is an experienced Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) and has frequently advised us, both professionally and informally, about our own dogs and cats. We trust him fully. Jim attends a couple of local vet clinics including Lincoln Road Veterinary Clinic in Grants Pass to where we take our pets when required.

Dr. Jim seeing a patient at Lincoln Road Vet.

Here is Jim’s update published with his kind permission and unchanged by me apart from some minor formatting amendments including italicising some phrases.

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Hey Paul …

Regarding your post of 1-11-18, a guest post by Kathreen Miller concerning canine diet, I feel the need (justified or not) to clarify a few points. She seems to be a big proponent of “organic diets” and lest your readers be misled, I think we need to define what is meant by “organic”.

The legal definition of “organic” is codified by the USDA National Organic Program (NOP) in 7 CFR 205. Pet foods and pet treats must comply with these regulations or they may not legally use the word “organic” on the label. If you read these regulations, you will find that “organic” refers only to the handling and processing of ingredients and products.

These regulations cover: ingredient sourcing, ingredient handling, manufacturing, and labeling & certification of products wanting to use the word “organic” in their labeling.

However, these rules are not considered by NOP as a means to ensure safer, healthier, or more nutritious foods. In fact, there is no regulatory distinction in the tolerable levels of pesticides, drugs, or other residues allowed in organic vs conventional products (even though lower residues may in fact be a result).

Rather, the “organic” label is viewed as a confirmation of the organic production process, and the purchaser is left to his or her own determination as to whether the costs merit the perceived benefits. The bottom line is that “organic” refers to the processing of a product, and makes no guarantees as to the quality or digestibility of ingredients, safety, nutritional value or health benefits of the product.

A savvy pet owner, in order to ensure her dog’s optimal nutritional health, would be better advised to follow guidelines outlined by WSAVA or AAHA (or other reputable source) rather than to reflexively reach for the dog food that says “organic” on the label. The “organic” label does not necessarily mean a diet is good or bad, but it has nothing to do with the nutritional adequacy of the diet and hence your dog’s health.

Another point: Kathreen seems to buy into the popular myth that plant-based ingredients (like corn) are poorly digested fillers that provide little nutritional value and can cause allergies. Corn provides a good source of carbohydrates, essential amino acids, protein, and essential fatty acids in the diets of dogs and cats. It is highly digestible and is not a common cause of allergies. It is actually a very good nutrient as an ingredient in pet food.

My last point is regarding the product “Pet Bounce” that Kathreen endorses as a treatment for arthritic pain in dogs. This product is labelled as homeopathic and as such is nothing more than a placebo.

It has been proven over and over and over again that homeopathic remedies are nothing but water and perform no better than placebos in numerous clinical trials. Reading the list of ingredients, one can see that it contains:

  • 1) Belladonna 6X
  • 2)Caulphyllum 6C
  • 3) Colchicum autumnale 200C
  • 4) Apis mellifica 30C
  • 5) Rhus toxicodendron 200C
  • 6) Ruta graveolens 6X.

Anyone familiar with homeopathic nomenclature knows that, for example, the Apis mellifica 30C designation means that this particular herb is diluted in water 1 to  or   (that’s 1 followed by 60 zeroes!).

To put it into perspective, that’s equivalent to 1 molecule of this substance in a sphere of water 90 million miles in diameter (approximately the distance of the earth to the sun). That’s a 30C dilution.

At a 200C dilution, the treating substance is diluted more than the total number of atoms in the known universe!

Regardless of any medicinal properties these herbs may have, they are so fantastically diluted that there is not one molecule present in the final solution.

I defy any reasonable person to tell me that this so-called remedy is effective to treat anything and consists of anything more than a water placebo.

My problem with this kind of snake oil is that well-meaning pet owners waste their money (~$50.00 per bottle!) on this useless product, believing all the hype and thinking that they are improving the quality of their dog’s life, meanwhile squandering the opportunity to actually help their dog with an effective and evidence-based treatment.

Kathreen seems to be a nice and well-intentioned woman, but I don’t know what qualifies her as a “pet health expert”, other than her own opinion. According to her profile (from your blog) she lives in Chicago with her daughter and dog “Buddy” and listens to music, watches TV, and travels. That’s it? Nothing more??

Again, your readers, Paul, would be well advised to visit professional veterinary nutrition websites (and there are dozens of them) for their veterinary nutritional information.
Below are a couple good places to start:
http://www.wsava.org/sites/default/files/Nutrition%20on%20the%20Internet%20dogs.pdf

http://www.wsava.org/sites/default/files/Recommendations%20on%20Selecting%20Pet%20Foods.pdf

Regards, Jim

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I know you will join me in thanking Jim for spending the time in writing this update.

The power of good food!

Connections: connections!

In my recent post Diet is so crucial to good health, published on the 11th January I opened it thus:

Sometime over the next few days I will write a post about an amazing connection that Jean made, via Richard in England, with Colin Potter. He is the founder of the site Fight Parkinson’s.

It is mentioned as an introduction to today’s post because Colin stresses the critical importance of the right diet for us humans.

Richard lives with his good lady, Julie, in Minety, a village in North Wiltshire. He and I go back many, many years and we have been close friends from the day that we first met. Richard was diagnosed with early-stage Parkinson’s Disease (PD) the same year and month as my Jeannie: December, 2015.

Last New Year’s Eve Richard and Julie were at a local party and the subject of PD came up. Richard subsequently told me that he was speaking to a fellow party guest who said that he was, in turn, an acquaintance of a Colin Potter. He went to add that Colin had also been diagnosed with PD but had decided not to ‘give in’ to the diagnosis but undertake comprehensive research into the causes and whether it was possible to go into remission. He later launched a website Fight Parkinsons.

This is Colin’s video that appears on the home page of Fight Parkinson’s.

Here’s some more of what Colin writes about on his website.

Parkinson’s RecoveryThis is where you find the answers to the causes of Parkinson’s and the actions you can take which may bring about a recovery.

There are actions that I’ve taken which have required guidance from a doctor (of Functional Medicine) or special practitioner. Other steps, such as changing to a better diet, I have done independently based upon my research.

Nowadays, there are so many ways that we fall foul of nature and the kind of life we are built to lead. Industrialisation and technology expose our bodies to so much stress and toxic substances, it’s no wonder that chronic disease arises. It also means that there are many things to put right.

This has been a journey of learning over several years and, with subsequent knowledge, there are some things I did at the start that I would do differently now. Nevertheless, I did them and can’t turn the clock back.

I share this with you because the chances are that you know someone who knows someone with PD. The information on the Fight Parkinson’s website is too important not to be shared as far and wide as possible.

The subscription price for signing up to all the information is just $5/GBP3.60 per month. Both Jeannie and Richard are subscribers.

Mercy For Animals

Sent to me by John Zande!

John, he of the blog site The Superstitious Naked Ape, recently sent me this appeal. I am very pleased to republish it here.

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Hello,
When I started Mercy For Animals nearly 20 years ago, I was a kid from the Midwest with a big dream and an unwavering determination to help animals. Building MFA was not easy. Our first meeting had three attendees. We had no money. But as we grew, I surrounded myself with incredible supporters like you, passionate volunteers, and committed colleagues.

MFA is the most meaningful endeavor of my life so far. My journey has been moving and inspiring. Working alongside such brilliant colleagues and implementing our shared vision of a kinder world for farmed animals has been an honor. Together, we have built MFA into the powerful organization it is today—one that achieves groundbreaking successes as the result of teamwork.

As MFA has grown in the past few years, I’ve found the personal and creative space to think about how I can best continue to shape our movement—and help more animals. This space led me to launch Circle V, the first vegan animal rights music festival, and to conceptualize and co-found The Good Food Institute, an organization that supports innovation in food and science to produce alternatives that are superior to animal products.

I’ve determined that I can be most effective right now by helping launch exciting new companies and initiatives. This means remaining in this creative, big-picture space and handing over much of the day-to-day operations at MFA to other skilled and respected leaders within the organization.
I’m proud to announce that our executive vice president, Matt Rice, has been promoted to president of MFA. I will continue to serve MFA as chair of the board of directors and will remain intimately involved in strategic decisions as the organization’s founder.

For more than 15 years, Matt Rice has been a central leader in the animal protection movement. He shares my vision for MFA and has implemented it with determination, tireless dedication, and compassion for animals and people.
Matt began in MFA’s New York office carrying out grassroots outreach before being promoted to director of operations. He later moved to Los Angeles to take over as director of investigations, working closely with our brave undercover investigators. Matt has overseen many of MFA’s biggest cases, most successful campaigns, and other victories. As executive vice president, he has overseen all departments.

Click below to watch a video about Matt and MFA’s priorities for 2018.


Matt is steadfast in his commitment to MFA. He is an ideal team player with sound judgment—a true powerhouse for animals. I trust him completely.

Matt is already working with other senior MFA leaders to implement new systems and structures, and we will launch compelling new campaigns this year. Matt is supported by a team of some of the best activists I’ve ever met.

I know that MFA will continue to break barriers and exceed expectations worldwide. Much remains to be done for animals, but we’ve proved time and again that for a movement built on love and persistence, no company is too powerful, no factory farm too big, and no government too mighty.

I’ve never been more optimistic about the future of MFA and our movement. Our greatest victories are still ahead.

Nathan Runkle
Founder

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Let me add that there is much information about the charity on WikiPedia, from which I quote a little:

Mercy For Animals (MFA) is an international non-profit organization dedicated to preventing cruelty to farmed animals and promoting compassionate food choices and policies, founded in October 1999. Nathan Runkle is the group’s executive director and founder.[1] Focusing primarily on advocacy on behalf of farmed animals, MFA runs a number of campaigns that aim to educate the public on animal protection issues and to encourage them to adopt a vegan diet.[2] It has engaged in several undercover investigations, primarily of egg farms, and has produced television commercials showing the treatment of animals in slaughterhouses and factory farms.[3] MFA is headquartered in Los Angeles.

Plus the charity’s website is here Mercy For Animals.

If you didn’t watch the video then, please, do it now.

Finally, please do what you can to support them.

Thank you, John, for sharing this with me.

 

Diet is so crucial to good health.

Not only for us but for our wonderful dogs.

Sometime over the next few days I will write a post about an amazing connection that Jean made, via Richard in England, with Colin Potter. He is the founder of the site Fight Parkinson’s.

It is mentioned as an introduction to today’s post because Colin stresses the critical importance of the right diet for us humans.

But now I want to go straight to a guest post sent to me by Kathreen Miller on the topic of diet for our dogs.

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Is Organic Food Really Good For Your Dog To Eat?

by Kathreen Miller

If you are searching for information related to organic food for dogs, then you’re probably a firm believer in animal rights and how food affects their health. . Maybe you are also considering how your dog will follow a vegan diet. Or how an organic diet can help improve your pet’s health?

You must understand that dogs require protein-rich foods. Therefore, you should look for balanced and high-quality food so that your pet’s health is not deteriorated. A low intake of protein in your pet could result in anemia which again causes joint pain in dogs.

Pet Bounce is one of the best dog pain medications to allefviate the joint pain in pet dogs.

Therefore, read this article to get information about organic food for a dog and how to make it a part of their regular diet. You might have some questions in your mind. You might think how can you make your dog eat organic food? Is it good for dogs? Before you start such kind of diet for your pet you need to do some research.

Consult a veterinary doctor and speak to him/her about the deficiency and advantage of an organic diet. You need to understand that the stomach of dogs is fragile. An instant change in the diet of a dog makes them suffer from diarrhea or bad breath. The change of diet in your dog should be slow.

If you are starting with organic food for your pet, then initially you need to give them organic food once a week. This will make your dog habitual and accustomed to organic food.

During this time period, you need to ensure that your dog gets a mix of normal as well as organic diet. Then after a considerable period of time, slowly increase the organic food proportion, and finally making it one hundred percent.
Besides, if you are considering about giving your dog the homemade diet then you must know which vegetables and fruits aren’t consumed by your dog. This is of utmost importance as a few vegetables can be toxic to your dog’s digestion. Visit a professional canine nutritionist to receive expert guidance. Also take your dog for health checkups.

This is to make sure that your dog will eat their new food and does not suffer from any diseases.

Why is Organic Food Important for Your Dog?

It is correct, that organic food for dogs is created with natural methods and does not contain any type of additives, preservatives, and artificial colorants. Also, the organic food should be grown in a completely natural manner. But remember, that all organic food brands won’t be entirely free from the preservatives.

Is Organic food Good for Dog’s Health?

As long as you obey the advice of your veterinary doctor, organic food is very good for the health of your dog. If you satisfy the requirements of your dogs, and their health is good, then we can have the idea that organic diet is good for the dogs. There are many types of organic foods. But what makes them bad or good is the range to which they satisfy the animal requirements for the nutrients.

Also, ensure that dogs must get a regular and high intake of protein and they never eat the excess quantity of corn. Since for dogs, corns are not easy to digest.

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I am delighted to add a little about Kathreen’s background.

 Kathreen Miller is a pet health expert. She lives in Chicago with her daughter and a dog named “Buddy”. She regularly contributes her write ups to pet health related websites and blogs. In her Free time, she loves listening to music, watching TV and traveling.

On her Pet Bounce site there is an informative article about joint pain in dogs.

Thanks Kathreen for composing this guest post.

I have taken the liberty of grabbing a copy of one of the photos from the Pet Bounce site.

We must do all we can to keep our dogs fit and healthy for as many years as possible!

Winter games

As seen through the eyes of an Australian shepherd dog.

Slowly perking up each day, so thought it would be good to share this short, delightful video with you all. As presented on the Mother Nature Network site.

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Australian shepherd loves to go sledding

NOEL KIRKPATRICK    January 3, 2018

When you think about dog sleds, you may think about a team of huskies pulling a sled across a snowy and icy landscape.

Perhaps you should change that image to an Australian shepherd confidently riding a sled down a hill.

Secret, a 3-year-old Aussie shepherd and the canine companion to 17-year-old human Mary, took advantage of there finally being enough snow to get some sledding in. And by “some” we mean around 50 shots down the hill, according to Mary’s Instagram caption. Secret drags her sled all the way to the top of the hill, hops on and gets her own snowy version of zoomies on as she slides down the hill. Once at the bottom, it’s right back up again, sled in mouth.

If only every day were a snow day for Secret.

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Well done, Secret. Gorgeous!

Primal Dog Food Recall

This was sent to me back on the 22nd December.

December 21, 2017 — Primal Pet Foods of Fairfield, California, is voluntarily recalling specific lots of 5 of its freeze-dried poultry products because their grind size exceeds the ideal size of ground bone to be fed to dogs and cats.

What’s Recalled?

Affected products include Primal Canine and Feline Freeze-Dried Poultry Formulas.

Click here for a more readable copy of the following list of recalled products.

Company Comments

Primal has posted the following comments about this recall on its website:

  • This is a Primal production specification issue – it poses absolutely no risk to human health.
  • We have very precise requirements as to how our foods are to be produced so they preform optimally.
  • We require our meat and bones be ground down to a coarseness of 1/8″
  • Over a single production run, the wrong grind plate was used and the product was ground at 1/4″ coarseness, which is a 1/8″ variance to our specifications.
  • We became aware that food produced over a single production run did not meet our precise specifications and may not preform optimally, particularly for small dogs and cats.
  • We are not comfortable having product in the market that doesn’t meet our precise specifications and deliver optimal experience to the consumer and pet.
  • This decision is entirely voluntary and the FDA is not involved at all.

What to Do?

The company asks that affected products be returned to the Primal retailer from where they were originally purchased for full credit.

Those unable to return the product directly to the retailer are invited to contact Primal Customer Service at 866-566-4652 extension 2 or by email at support@primalpetfoods.com

U.S. citizens can report complaints about FDA-regulated pet food products by calling the consumer complaint coordinator in your area.

Or go to http://www.fda.gov/petfoodcomplaints.

Canadians can report any health or safety incidents related to the use of this product by filling out the Consumer Product Incident Report Form.

Get Dog Food Recall Alerts by Email

Get free dog food recall alerts sent to you by email. Subscribe to The Dog Food Advisor’s emergency recall notification system.

Hope this helps!

This is home!

It continues to feel very special!

Last Wednesday I was signed off in terms of being over my medical challenge and the good doctor said I was clear to return to driving; I drove home that afternoon from Eugene to Merlin.

I wanted to offer you good people a sense of what being home, more or less compus mentus , feels like.

I offer you this YouTube video.

It is a very beautiful world!