August 13, 2021 — Wet Noses Natural Dog Treat Company of Monroe, Washington, is recalling approximately 51,000 packages of Simply Nourish frozen dog food due to it elevated levels of Vitamin D.
What’s Being Recalled?
Recalled products are marketed in 2-pound and 4.5-pound packages across specific “Best By” dates.
A full list of affected products is included below:
Affected Simply Nourish frozen food products were distributed at select PetSmart stores nationwide.
No illnesses have been reported to date. No other products have been affected.
About Vitamin D Toxicity in Dogs
Dogs ingesting elevated levels of Vitamin D may exhibit symptoms such as vomiting, loss of appetite, increased thirst, increased urination, excessive drooling, and weight loss.
Vitamin D when consumed at very high levels or over a long period of time can lead to serious health issues in dogs… including kidney failure and death.
Consumers who have dogs that have consumed any of the products listed above and are exhibiting these symptoms, should contact their veterinarian.
What Caused the Recall?
The recall was initiated after a routine nutrition test confirmed elevated Vitamin D levels on certain Simply Nourish frozen food products.
Subsequent investigation indicates the problem arose as a result of the vitamin mix dosage being significantly reduced by the vitamin mix manufacturer, and this change was not detected or properly communicated.
As a result, the dosage was not reduced.
We care deeply about our customers and their pets, and have put corrective actions into place to ensure this issue does not reoccur.
This recall is being made with the knowledge of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
What to Do?
Consumers should immediately stop feeding the above products to their dogs.
Consumers who have purchased Simply Nourish Frozen Food are urged to return it to the place of purchase for a full refund.
Consumers with questions may contact the company at 800-938-6673 Monday to Friday, 8 am to 4:30 pm PST.
Once more I do not know what to say. Except, of course, to be careful and if the slightest doubt crosses your mind in terms of what you are feeding your dog(s) then please check the Dog Food Reviews and Ratings by Brand list.
The following came in on the 30th July and I made the decision to wait until today to share it with you all.
Six Dog Food Brands Recalled Due to Dangerous Mold Toxin
July 29, 2021 — Sunshine Mills is recalling six dog food brands due to dangerouslevels of aflatoxin.
Aflatoxin is a potentially deadly toxin produced by Aspergillus mold (typically found on corn)… and which can be harmful to pets if consumed in significant amounts.
To date, no illnesses have been reported in association with the related products. No other Sunshine Mills pet foods are affected by this announcement.
The affected products were distributed in retail stores nationally.
Retailers who received the recalled lots have been contacted and asked to pull these lots from their inventory and shelves.
There are no other Triumph®, Evolve®, Wild Harvest®, Nurture Farms®, Pure Being®, or Elm products or other lot codes of these products affected by this recall.
Message from the Company
“While no adverse health effects related to these products have been reported, Sunshine Mills, Inc. has chosen to issue a voluntary recall of the above-referenced products as a precautionary measure in furtherance of its commitment to the safety and quality of its products.”
What to Do?
Pets that have consumed any of the above recalled products and exhibit symptoms of illness including sluggishness or lethargy combined with a reluctance to eat, vomiting, yellowish tint to the eyes or gums, or diarrhea should be seen by a veterinarian.
Consumers who have purchased the recalled dog food should discontinue use of the product… and may return the unused portion to the place of purchase for a full refund.
Consumers may contact Sunshine Mills, Inc. customer service at 800-705-2111 from 7 am to 4 pm Central Time, Monday through Friday.
Or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org for additional information.
This is a voluntary recall being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
I am a bit stuck for time so forgive me for just posting this video.
The information that came with this video is posted first:
Are you worried your dog is looking a little down? Or do you just want to do everything you can to make your dog the happiest in the world? Any responsible owner will want their dog to be as happy as can be, so this AnimalWised videos brings you 10 essential tips on how to make your DOG HAPPIER. A happy dog will not only need their basic care needs met, but they will require a considerate and thoughtful human companion to go beyond the basics. We need to pay attention to what it is they are trying to communicate to us through their behavior and body language. We also need to ensure the way we behave towards the dog is making them happy and we do all we can to strengthen our bond together. It is also imperative to know that a healthy dog is a happy dog.
On AnimalWised you’ll discover a high quality channel that’s exclusively devoted to the Animal Kingdom. You’ll find all sorts of content: from training, diet or beauty and everything that can be useful for you as a pet owner or animal lover. Want to become AnimalWised? Take a look and have fun with us!
In fairness it does look like a decent video and website.
Alok Sharma on why COP26 is our best chance for a greener future.
I wanted to share the eight-minute video that appeared on TED Talks. But it hasn’t appeared on YouTube as yet.
But the link is embedded above so if you don’t want to watch the slightly longer version (just 22 minutes) then that is fine.
I will share the words that came with the TED Talks video.
Something powerful is happening around the world. The issue of climate change has moved from the margins to the mainstream, says Alok Sharma, the President-Designate of COP26, the United Nations climate conference set to take place in November 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland. He unpacks what this shift means for the world economy and the accelerating “green industrial revolution” — and lays out the urgent actions that need to happen in order to limit global temperature rise.
Plus on the speaker, Alok Sharma.
Alok Sharma is a British politician, Cabinet Minister and President-Designate of COP26, the United Nations Climate Change Conference being held in Glasgow from 31 October until 12 November.
Sharma was previously UK Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. Before that, he was UK Secretary of State for International Development. He has also served in ministerial roles in the Department of Work and Pensions, Department for Communities and Local Government, and at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Prior to politics, he worked in finance.
Please watch the video for all our sakes.
For the sake of our dogs, and for the sake of everyone on this planet.
Luckily, her mom found the perfect place to help her come out of her shell — Home Depot.
“The Home Depot runs started as a way to help her with her fears,” Rakers told The Dodo. “She was nervous about new places and new sounds, so we’d go for five minutes and she’d get all the treats. Then we started going longer and longer and exposing her to more and more things within the store.”
The large, dog-friendly store was the perfect place for Heaven to socialize, and the pup was such a good girl on her visits that she earned her own tiny employee apron.
Now, Heaven knows that when the apron comes out, she’s about to go to her favorite place.
“I keep it in the car so we are always ready,” Rakers said. “As soon as she can tell we are in the parking lot, she just quivers until I put [the apron] on her and then she takes off towards ‘work.’”
“She walks around like she owns the place,” Rakers added.
Heaven has become a bit of a celebrity at her local Home Depot, where all the staff knows her by name, and there’s even a picture of her in the break room.
And while she may not be an official employee, when she’s at her favorite store, she offers excellent customer service.
“She walks around minding her own business and then suddenly insists on meeting someone,” Rakers said. “She just sits and stares. They always end up saying how they needed that pick-me-up. It’s like she has a sense of who needs to be shown they are loved that day — and one of her favorite places to do that is Home Depot!”
Heaven loves running errands with her mom, and everywhere they go, she finds someone having a rough day who needs her smile.
“She was scared of everything, but with a lot of training and patience she learned to trust and now it’s like she pays it forward,” Rakers said. “She finds who needs her and gives them that smile and a cuddle.”
The only downside of all their Home Depot runs is that every time they visit, Rakers comes up with a new home improvement project. But all the retail therapy is worth it when she sees how happy Heaven is and how far she’s come.
“She’s the perfect example of what happens when you meet someone where they are at and love unconditionally,” Rakers said. “She went from so scared and so sad to the happiest dog.”
Thank goodness our local Home Depot here in Grants Pass (Oregon) don’t have a Heaven in the store. For if they did Jean and I would be in the store every day of the year. OK, maybe a small exaggeration but only a small one!
Seriously, Home Depot are to be congratulated. It’s good for the store. It’s good for the employees. It’s good for the customers. But it is fantastic for Heaven!
John is becoming a regular contributor to Learning from Dogs. He was last here on March 26th, this year with a guest post Reasons to get a pet portrait.
This is a timely and pertinent post.
Five Questions you need to ask a Boarding Kennel
If you’re planning a vacation or a work trip, you’ll need to decide what to do with your beloved pooch. This can be a stressful event for both you and your pup, but things will go a lot easier if you pick the right boarding kennel.
How do you know whether you’ve picked a good kennel?
The best way to determine the quality of a kennel is by asking appropriate questions. Not sure what those would be? Never fear! We’ve got you covered!
Read on to learn what questions to ask to help you choose the best available pet hotels or kennels.
Five Questions to Ask a Kennel or Pet Hotel
One – Is Your Kennel or Pet Hotel Certified?
Certification is not mandatory for kennels. However, certified kennels have to comply with 250 standards in 17 areas of pet care facility operation. This certification is known as the Voluntary Facilities Accreditation (VFA) certificate. If they have a certificate, you can assume several things about the facility:
They have put time and money into making sure they have the best facility possible for the animals they care for. They care about reassuring pet parents that their dogs will be well cared for. They have all the necessary space and equipment to take excellent care of your pooch. Your pup will be secure and safe while you’re away.
Two – Can I Tour The Kennel?
You must always ask to tour the facilities. Just like you put in research when you book a hotel, you need to be equally as fastidious when you book a kennel. Therefore, you should look for the following:
Is the kennel odor-free?
A clean kennel will not smell because all urine and feces will have been cleaned up quickly and appropriately.
Is it loud or quiet?
Dog kennels will be noisy, but an extreme amount of noise usually signals that the pups are unhappy.
Are there enough staff?
There should be a 1-to-10 staff to dog ratio. The higher the people to animal ratio, the more individual attention your dog will get.
Are the living and playing areas clean?
Are there feces, urine, and debris? Or are the areas open and clean?
Do all animals have proper bedding and water?
The pooches should look content and stress-free and have both comfortable bedding and ample water. If a kennel doesn’t let you take an impromptu tour, do not leave your pup there.
Three – What Will the Facility Do if Your Dog Gets Sick?
The kennel must have a procedure in place for dealing with small issues like diarrhea and broken toenails and more significant problems like medical emergencies. Ideally, they will ask you to pre-approve an amount for vet services. They should also know basic pet first-aid.
Four – How Knowledgeable Are the Staff?
Kennel staff, like the facility, are not required to be certified in animal behavior or training. However, what’s more, important than a certificate is the staff’s attitude and attentiveness. Good staff can tell you details about each animal under their care.
When you enter the kennel, staff should welcome your dog and take meticulous notes about your pup’s diet, exercise needs, medications, and any other pertinent information. Take note of whether they are patient, friendly, and seem genuinely interested in your pooch’s welfare.
Five – What Do the Exercise and Play Programs Look Like?
You must look at the package your kennel is offering. Some kennels have one playtime, whereas others don’t include any in their base fee.
Good kennels will have a system for playtime where they divide dogs by style, size, age, etc., to keep the pups safe and happy.
Dogs that need more exercise should get walked by a kennel assistant. So, if you own a dog that needs regular walking, make sure that the kennel offers this service and has enough staff to meet your pup’s needs.
Furthermore, not all kennels offer toys for your pooch to play with. So it’s important to find out ahead of time if you need to provide your own toys.
To Sum Up…
We know you love your dog, so you should plan where they will stay while you’re away as carefully as you planned your vacation. The most essential thing to look for when visiting different kennels or pet hotels is how the environment makes you feel. Listen to your gut. If you feel comfortable and you get along well with the staff, then there’s a high probability that your pup will feel at ease there as well. While no kennel can replace the feeling of home for your dog, it should come close. This way, you’ll be able to go on your trip knowing your pooch is safe, sound, and well cared for.
This is a very useful list from John. One that will provide guidance to everyone but especially to the new dog owners.
As can happen from time to time, I was contacted by Ray Dunthorne in England. He very kindly said that he had been following Learning from Dogs for a while and also was aware of my previous interest in flying.
So I emailed Ray saying that I would love to publish his account as a guest post and lo and behold in came the following story.
The Story of Lulu
Ah hello again, I’ll try ever so hard not to give you my full life story, but just stuff you might find interesting and relevant, but can’t promise to get the balance right!
Willows Activity Farm St Albans
My adult dog journey began with Lulu, 15 years ago, but the seed was sown some 5 years earlier at a city farm. We’d gone with the then middle-born five-year-old for his birthday party. The shepherd who did herding demonstrations was over from New Zealand and had two dogs who’d just had a litter of puppies, which we were shown. We’d never heard of the New Zealand Huntaway, it was described as a combination of German Shepherd, Border Collie and Labrador, with a few other breeds thrown in for good measure.
They’d been consistently bred in, yes, you guessed it, New Zealand for over 100 years, specifically to help move large herds of sheep or cattle over long distances. The agile New Zealand Huntaway became known for its ability to move across packed, penned herds by leaping from the back of one sheep to another. Its loud LOUD bark was also required, as if not busy barking to get cattle or sheep moving, the Huntaway would be sent after a sheep or lamb that had strayed out of sight, hold it down (I don’t know how) and BARK so the shepherd could locate the unruly pair.
Little thought was given to the New Zealand Huntaway for a few years, when – on the other side of divorce – my then ex-wife and I decided to get a dog to raise collaboratively, to keep the disparate family united in some way. Divorce-wise, it wasn’t so amicable initially, as these things usually aren’t, but soon settled down with the three growing boys being the priority.
Lime End Farm, Sussex
Of course we couldn’t agree on the type of dog. I’d always wanted a German Shepherd, madame a Border Collie and a Labrador was a popular choice with Stanley, Arthur and Sidney (the aforementioned three boys). I bet you can tell where this is going. Yes, I remembered the New Zealand Huntaway. In 2006, it was a lot harder to find a litter in the UK than it is now, but I did. Down on a farm in Sussex. Lulu’s mum and dad were also over from New Zealand with a shepherd, this one herding cattle at Lime End Dairy Farm.
Lime End is in Herstmonceux, East Sussex, which is as Olde English countryside as it sounds, with a castle and an annual Medieval festival to complete the picture.
As soon as we arrived in the classic farm yard, all the puppies bumbled out to say hello, emerging three at a time from under an old caravan where they’d been sheltering from the sun. Their dad, Lord Toro was tied to a nearby barn, doing some general barking ‘he’s frightened of the puppies’ the lady told us. The nine puppies all toppled about us for a few minutes, then all rushed off to find dinner. All except one.
Eight week old Lulu came back with me, Sidney and Helen, my new girlfriend at the time, who I’d charmingly had to borrow the £300 needed to secure Lulu from. It was a four or five hour round trip for the three of us, four including Lulu. A bonding opportunity all round.
I always remember that – to add to the idyllic Sussex farm scene, as if it wasn’t enough like a scene from a film Hugh Grant drives a Mini in – just as we were leaving, an old barn door got pushed open from the inside and a litter of Border Collie puppies and their mum and dad ran out, to say hello to the remaining Huntaways and good bye to us.
Best Laid Plans
The wisdom of bringing that hard-working herding dog into two separate St Albans houses didn’t cross my mind. It probably should have, especially as my ‘house’ was a rented Maisonette, no dogs aloud. The theory was Lulu would be at the children’s house in the week, mine along with the children at the weekends. It didn’t turn out like that.
After a few months both me and my ex-wife got short contracts that meant heading off to work in an office for the day. Far from ideal, but no money at that point meant no choice. At least it was only temporary. Lulu would have been about six months old by then and absolutely should not have been left alone FOR A SECOND.
The office was just 15 minutes away (PC World, Maylands, Hemel Hempstead). I did manage to pop back at lunchtime most days and a child would pop round a few hours later after school. New Zealand Huntaways are like any puppy only more so. They need a lot of exercise and mental stimulation, or else you will pay.
A novice dog guardian then, I learned everything the hard way. Before her first birthday, Lulu had removed the floor covering in the kitchen and the lounge. She’d moved a large old cathode ray TV across the room, knocked bookshelves over and generally done over £1,000 of damage. I know it was that much because I got a bill from the landlord. I paid.
What dogs do
I will cut to the end here. That was in the first year of Lulu’s life.
The contract I mentioned was my first proper BIG company for the digital stuff I was doing, without it I wouldn’t have been able to have the career I’ve had, which started late as I accidentally tried to be a musician for ten years. Not too successfully. That doesn’t matter though.
The 14 years has gone by and even Sidney, who was about five years old when he came with us to East Sussex to meet Lulu, has gone off to university, the older two long-since moved away, to Nottingham and London respectively, leaving me, Lulu and my Helen, that new girlfriend who’d come to Sussex with us on that early date, who moved in a year or so later and is still here.
What Lulu did was tie us all together. Yes, she was a nightmare initially. Yes, she would run away, out of sight chasing imaginary deer, for 30 or 40 minutes at a time. Yes, she’d bark at everything, constantly herding the children when they were small, stopping them from fighting among each other as they got bigger, becoming more and more generally in control and charming with each year. Almost without us noticing. All of a sudden, she was one of us. Not a pet, not a ‘furry friend’, not even a dog really.
She could sense when someone was ill or in distress and would attend accordingly. She loved small children and even when in a fierce mood, if a small child the same size as her approached, she would sit down and raise her head waiting for a pair of tiny arms to be thrown around her. It had all just got normal for us. Pretty much every time when we were out with her, she’d do something that would further add to our respect for her understanding of what’s going on. She WAS one of us.
Now it’s all gone
It’s only when Lulu was finally gone I noticed everything else that’s passed too. All that time, pretty much my entire career, moving from acrimoniously divorced to getting along just fine and concentrating on giving the three boys as good a start as we could manage. The three boys no longer the children they were when Lulu was working out her role in the family, now all long-since scarpered and working harder than I ever have.
My career is pretty much done too. I’m finding it harder to get new contracts or jobs in digital. ‘What are you doing working in digital? I thought that was a young man’s game’ one marketing director interviewing me for a dull digital role I didn’t want tactfully said, almost ten years ago too. I won’t say where, for reasons of professional discretion (David Lloyd Leisure, Hatfield, Monday 4th March 2013)
Lulu’s Legacy is Ten Year Tags
Phew, we’re getting up to date at last. Lulu lost dog name tags like it was something she was born to do. Sometimes in a few months, sometimes in a few days. We got through dozens. I’m a bit slow on the uptake, it took me a while to work out the dog name tags on the market just might not be up to the job.
It took about a year of fact-finding, market assessment and trying to work out how to make a better dog name tag before I was ready to start planning the equipment we needed. Having wasted months liaising with companies in China to get the tags made in volume, I gave up on that idea to both keep our carbon footprint down AND have more control over any supply chain and not have to worry about any one critical supplier.
With over 9 million dogs in the UK alone, there’s a good sized market. Research quickly revealed this ubiquitous, low price point product has largely been ignored, especially digitally. Consequently many competitors are getting away with minimal product quality and poor customer experience (I’ll come back to this). This surprised me, as not many products pretty much anyone can manufacture are actuallyrequired by law in the UK courtesy of a stupidly out of date Dog Tag Law.
I pretty much, at least subliminally, thank Lulu for every tag I press out and when it’s a busy day that started at 6 am and is only drawing to a close with a 6pm trip to the sorting office with a sack of 50 or more orders, I’m ever so grateful to Lulu, as without her showing us the flaws in all those substandard products over the years, patiently waiting until Raymond here got the hint, we probably wouldn’t be coping at all right now. Lulu is still looking after us.
Thank you, Ray.
This is such a delightful story. So much so that I am going to post another story for Saturday. Namely, a short article, broadly written by Ray, and featuring the Spitfire.
It is shared with you all exactly as it came in to me.
Freshpet Dog Food Recall
June 13, 2021 — Freshpet Inc. of Secaucus, New Jersey, is recalling a single lot of Freshpet Dog Food due to potential contamination with Salmonella bacteria.
The following defective dog food is being recalled:
Freshpet Select Small Dog Bite Size Beef and Egg Recipe
Package size: 1 pound bags
Sell by date: 10/30/2021
Sell by date, along with UPC code and lot code, can be found on the bottom and back of each bag. Product images are posted below.
No other Freshpet products or lot codes are impacted by this recall.
What Caused the Recall?
Workers at Freshpet discovered a single lot of dog food that was contaminated with Salmonella bacteria… and had designated it for destruction.
However, the contaminated product was accidentally shipped to retailers in limited geographic markets between June 7 to June 10, 2021.
Where Was the Product Sold?
The recalled products may have been sold at: Publix in Florida, South Carolina, and Georgia. It was also distributed at limited Target locations in Arizona and Southern California.
Most of the product was intercepted at retailer distribution warehouses and not delivered to retail stores.
According to the company, “Freshpet has received no reports of illness, injury, or adverse reaction to date, and has issued this recall because of our deep commitment to the safety of our pet parents and their dogs.”
Salmonella can affect animals eating the product and there is risk to humans from handling contaminated products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these products.
Healthy people infected with Salmonella should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever.
Rarely, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract symptoms.
Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers.
Dogs with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting.
Some dogs will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain.
Infected but otherwise healthy dogs can be carriers and infect other animals or humans.
If your dog has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.
What to Do?
If pet parents have products matching the description above, they should stop feeding it to their dogs and dispose of it immediately.
Consumers are asked to call the company if you have any of the recalled product in your possession.
Pet parents who have questions or would like to report adverse reactions should call 1-866-789-3737, Monday through Friday, 9 am to 9 pm ET and Saturday through Sunday, 9 am to 1 pm ET… or visit www.freshpet.com.
Humans are great inventors! Indeed, a better way to describe H. sapiens ever since we separated from the chimpanzees, some 5 or 6 million years ago, is to describe us as explorers both outwards and inwards constantly in search for new worlds and new insights into meaning.
Thus this naturally caught me eye as Doug Thron uses a modern device, a drone, to search for animals in distress, a very ancient behaviour!
Drone Pilot Rescues Animals After Natural Disasters
Doug Thron goes to devastated areas to save pets and wildlife.
For nearly three decades, seaplane and drone pilot Doug Thron has been a professional photographer and cinematographer, primarily for nature shows and magazines. A few years ago he was using his drone to film the devastation left behind after wildfires in California when he teamed up with rescuers to help find lost pets and reunite them with their owners.
A long-time animal lover and environmentalist, Thron realized he could combine those passions, using his aerial skills. He now travels wherever there is need, using his drone to help communities dealing with the destruction after natural disasters.
Thron is featured in a six-part documentary series “Doug to the Rescue”streaming on CuriosityStream beginning June 10.
He talked to Treehugger about his first animal rescues, his drones, and some of the challenges he’s faced.
Treehugger: Which came first: the animal rescue work or the drone?
Dough Thron: I was using drones for filming for TV shows, commercials, and real estate clients before doing the animal rescue work.
Were you involved in animal rescue and realized that your drone work could come in handy?
Definitely. I was doing animal rescue work after the wildfires in Paradise, California. I was working with an expert cat rescuer named Shannon Jay, and I saw him using an infrared scope at night to help find the cats. We talked about how incredible it would be to put one on a drone and when the opportunity came up about 10 months later in the Bahamas after the category 5 Hurricane Dorian, that’s what I did and it worked incredibly.
I had raised orphaned baby animals as a kid and worked with animals such as possums, raccoons, squirrels, beavers, and even mountain lions. I’ve been using drones since 2013 for cinematography, so I’ve used them for quite a while before I got involved in the actual rescuing of animals with drones.
What was your first big rescue using a drone?
My first big rescue using a drone was in the Bahamas after Hurricane Dorian. I was there helping to deliver aid and film the destruction when I spotted a dog roaming around the mountains of debris. He obviously hadn’t had any water or much food for days. He was really apprehensive at first, but warmed up over the course of the day, as I just sat with him. Dog food and water helped! The next day, some animal rescuers came with me to get him. He’s such an incredible dog, and meant so much to me, so I adopted him and named him Duke after a sign I’d seen where I found him.
Where are some of the places you’ve gone to help stranded animals?
The Bahamas, Australia, Oregon, California, and Louisiana.
What were some of the most challenging circumstances?
In Australia, it was challenging because the hurt koalas were deep in burnt out forests, often with a dense canopy. It was so hot out you had to fly strictly at night with spotlights and infrared and fly the drone pretty far and often drop it down through the trees to see the animals, which takes a lot of skill. Koalas are also very aggressive and strong, and not always thrilled when you go to grab them out of a tree to rescue them. On almost all these rescues, Australia and everywhere else, it’s countless long hours of work—generally about 20 hours a day—which can certainly wear you down day after day.
What is it like when you spot an animal in an area of devastation where there is no other sign of life?
It’s great to be able to rescue these animals so much more efficiently and faster and, in many cases, find animals that never would have been found. It’s different everywhere I go—finding animals when there aren’t any others alive nearby is always really hard. But in places like Louisiana, where I was searching in so many neighborhoods, it gives you a feeling of hope when you find a cat or dog, knowing it was someone’s pet.
In other places, like Australia, I’d be covering dozens of miles a night, sometimes and only finding an occasional animal. It’s really sad because you realize how many thousands of animals didn’t make it. It’s also really hard to see how fires and other natural disasters as a result of climate change are taking out the last patches of unentered habitat and endangered animals.
How heart-wrenching can it be?
It can be really heart-wrenching to find animals that are severely wounded, but it’s wonderful to be able to save them.
How euphoric is it when you make a great save?
It’s awesome to be able to save people’s cats and dogs because frequently, that might be the only thing they have left after a fire or hurricane. Obviously, for the animal’s sake, it’s so incredible because without the infrared drone, in many cases, the animal would have never been found and would have died, sometimes a slow and painful death.
What is your drone like?
The Matrice 210 V2 are the drones I use with an infrared camera, spotlight, and 180x zoom lens. The combination of using those three attachments for animal rescue has never been done before.
How much time do you spend doing animal rescue work? What else do you do?
The rescue work is pretty continuous for 9 to 10 months during the fire and hurricane seasons. After that, there are occasional lost pets to be found.
What else do you want to accomplish?
I hope to make using infrared drones for animal rescue as popular as helicopters are for rescuing people after a natural disaster. So many more animals can be saved when you can find them so much faster and find ones that never would have been found on foot because there is just too much area to cover.
This account makes me want to choke up. Doug is clearly used to being a professional photographer and, also, works with others in the field of animal rescue. But this story is about Doug and he is engaged with animal rescue with his heart as well as his head!
Doug has been reported widely I am delighted to say and there’s a YouTube video that you can watch.
This is one of the most important posts since I started blogging!
I was born in 1944 and that makes me 76. I am reasonably engaged in the issues facing us but, in a sense, protected from the realities of the modern world because I have a loving wife, two loving young people, as in my son Alex and my daughter Maija, and a special grandson, Morten.
We are also very lucky in that my wife, Jean, and I are both retired and we live on 13 rural acres in a beautiful part of Southern Oregon and enjoy immensely our six dogs, two horses, two parakeets and feeding the wild birds and deer.
But it can’t stay that way because of the encroaching elephant in the room.
I am speaking of climate change that if not dealt with in the near future, say in the next 10 years, will lead to an unimaginable state of affairs.
Now one could argue that you come to Learning from Dogs to get away from climate change and the like. But this is too important and, also, involves all of us including our gorgeous dogs.
First, I want to include an extract from a recent Scientists Warning newsletter (and please read this extract carefully).
Recently, one article on the climate emergency above all others has cut through – with over ONE MILLION views, “Climate scientists: concept of net zero is a dangerous trap” published in The Conversation is being talked about by many thousands, and led Greta Thunberg to tweet: “This is one of the most important and informative texts I have ever read on the climate- and ecological crises.”
So why is this article so very important?
In our latest interview, I talk with two of the authors – Dr. James Dyke, global systems scientist at the University of Exeter and Dr. Wolfgang Knorr, climate scientist at Lund University. And the conversation does not make for comfortable viewing. We discuss what led James, Wolfgang and Professor Bob Watson to write an article that they have described as being one of the hardest they have ever written. The article is *not* an attack on net zero, nor does it advocate a fatalistic position. Instead, as you will hear, the interview reveals the heartfelt concerns of two scientists who are profoundly worried about the failure of a climate policy system that suppresses the voice of science and is fundamentally flawed. A climate policy system that year after year has failed.
But it is not just the climate policy system that has failed. Academia has failed too, and continues to fail Greta and young people like her. And this *must* stop. Young people have become the adults in the room. We cannot place this burden on their shoulders. They have shown their courage and bravery. Now it’s time for academia to step up to the challenge and to critically examine why we are failing.
Secondly, I want to share that interview with you. This is a 36-minute interview. Please, please watch it. If it is not a convenient time just now then bookmark the post and watch it when you can sit down and be fully engaged. You will understand then and agree with me that this is one of the most important videos ever!
Lastly, I would like you to read the article published in The Conversation. I have included a link to it but I am also going to republish it on Friday.
Because we have to listen to the scientists without delay and press for change now.
Thank goodness for our younger generation. Because these young people are coming together to fight for change. May they have universal encouragement from those of us who will never see our younger days again!