Yesterday we drove down to Phoenix, Oregon to deliver the Sun Tricycle to the new owners. Daniel and Cherie were a delightful couple, albeit more my age than younger. But they had been through one heck of a disaster. Because last year they were both asked to flee the fires with very little notice and only recently had they found a new home and were still settling in.
Daniel rides his trike and wanted to get one for Cherie. We were delighted with the sale and we hope we all will see each other in the near future.
Anyway, Daniel is quite an artist and Jean mentioned she used to paint before the Parkinson’s tremor made it much more difficult. But Daniel insisted on photographs being taken of a few of Jean’s paintings and sent to them via email.
Alfie has had his operation and all is well! I don’t know more than that at the moment but I do want to share the journey from New York to Minneapolis with you. Because it is such a story of love and devotion.
(And I have just heard that Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh, has died – oh, dear.)
The week we travelled to the US, the East Coast was experiencing one of its winter storms. Snow threatening our progress overland to our destination. With this in mind, we worked with James Gallagher at Enterprise close to Westhampton Private Airport near Maine just outside NY, we arranged for a Jeep Gladiator to be waiting on the tarmac for us. The plan was to land, walk down the steps and into the Jeep, then drive around 20 hours across 9 States (New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Minnesota) taking it in turns, and stopping only when tiredness took hold to sleep. When I say drive around 20 hours, that’s just driving, not stopping to fuel, use a bathroom, eat, rest. Over 1,300 miles. A mammoth task.
The plan hit the rocks as the jet approached Westhampton and were told the runway closed due to snow. We were diverted to JFK, and then Ubëred two hours back to our original airport. We could have tried to get a four wheel drive from JFK but we already knew getting something in the middle of a bad storm would be near impossible. Trying to fly internally from JFK to Minneapolis was off the table too as we had bought a lot of luggage with us, which we intended to leave in the US. Trying to get this through JFK, with all of this and a dog, a dog that potentially could have been turned away at the gate for being too big, was not worth trying to modify our plan.
Snow on the ground we got our Jeep, and just had James had said when he sourced it for us – it looked unstoppable. He’d kindly shovelled out most of the snow from the pick-up bed. We headed out through rush hour NYC traffic towards Minnesota following the quickest route on Google Maps. Surprisingly through the Bronx. We made it through the other side and eventually stopped somewhere on the outskirts in search of a toilet and food. A Gladiator sits high off the ground, and we were already tired. As we pulled up outside a potential watering hole Renée opened the door and fell out, hitting the ground audibly so. Alfie was in her arms but had the foresight to recognise trouble and jump to safety. We went inside, one of us limping, to check ourselves over and eat. Luckily just bruising; limbs and pride. We were there a couple of hours, much longer than we intended, but the food and rest needed. It was a big, clean hotel and would have been a good place to stop, at the expense of making the next day even harder. We pushed on. Before doing so I looked at Google maps and realised I’d made a schoolboy error. Living in London and owning old cars is a constant maze avoiding paying the Congestion Charge and ULEZ (Ultra Low Emission Zone). My phone was still set to avoid these tolls, hence our route through the the centre on New York. Worse, the fastest route would now see us backtrack some of the way we’d just driven.
The Gladiator proved its worth as the elevation climbed and snowfall increased. We kept going until tiredness eventually became too dangerous to ignore and we stopped somewhere, somewhere being my best guess at where as I was so tired. A room at a Holiday Inn. Alfie making friends with the front desk saw the $80 dog fee waved. We didn’t sleep long, maybe three hours and returned to the Jeep early around sunrise. Throughout the entire trip Alfie had sat up front on Renée’s lap as the rear seats of our crew cab style truck full of luggage (the pick up bed empty so our stuff remained dry and safe). I’d read that these Jeeps were not great over long distances, and my previous longest time in one, a Rubicon, was between Fargo and Minneapolis on roads closed due to snow. It was cold and as a passenger I got leg ache. From the driver’s seat it wasn’t too bad. I’m sure most people buy slab sided trucks like this, original Land Rover Defenders and G Wagons simply because they look good, but there is no denying when the conditions get tough they are incredibly capable. Well, maybe not the G Wagon as that’s simply a fashion accessory.
“Watching a sleeping poorly dog, all of us crammed up front with the heater blowing full pelt to keep warm, hour after hour, made me question my original judgement of travelling this way
Watching Alfred, a poorly dog, asleep on Renée’s lap, all of us crammed up front with the heater blowing full pelt to keep warm, hour after hour, made me question my original judgement of travelling this way. My thinking was to have Alfred in the air for the minimum time and then get him the rest of the way by road where he would not be squashed in a bag, could go pee whenever he needed, and I could deal easily with any seizures. The whole private jet decision happened very fast and I hadn’t really adjusted to the revised plan. Also the plan had been to land at Westhampton, not JFK where we could have easily boarded a domestic flight to Minneapolis. Hindsight always great, and beating yourself up over something already done when tired completely pointless. The important think was we were in the USA, and on our way to get Alfred the help he needed. Given the obstacles in our way just two days ago we really should be patting ourselves n the back.
Eventually, around three hours out from our destination, I could drive no more and we stopped in one of the fantastic US rest areas. These places are free from gas stations, usually have vending machines, and clean toilet facilities. They feel safe and good places to stop for a snooze. It was cold though, with a lot of snow and ice on the ground. We slept a while with the engine running and heater keeping us warm. When it is this cold, global warming is the last thing on your agenda.
“We slept a while with the engine running and heater keeping us warm. When it is this cold, global warming is the last thing on your agenda.
I’ve been in this situation before. Driving while tired is super dangerous. I suspect more so than alcohol (within reason) and up there with texting. As a pilot once said over the tannoy of a flight to Bahrain years ago: better to get there late than not at all. But before long, Renée woke me and wanted to carry on. I managed the next hour before handing over the driving to her to get us the rest of the way. The two of us had dug really deep to make it.
Arriving at the Canopy in Minneapolis was a welcome sight. Alfred’s surgery was scheduled 10 days from now but we had an option to bring it forward should he deteriorate rapidly. We were where we needed to be. A huge victory and I could literally feel the stress lifting from me.
Of course, we were only actually part way there, the real challenge was to come.
And of course, as I mentioned at the beginning of this post, little Alfie has arrived in Minneapolis and has had his operation. In due coarse I will bring you the latest.
It was about Andrew Coyne who with his wife, Renée, had come across to America in order to have an operation on his dog, Alfred. It was very moving. I then made contact with Andrew and asked him if I could have permission to republish. It was granted. Furthermore, Andrew went on to say:
The only place we could find to perform surgery and give him immunotherapy was the US. Getting to the US a massive challenge as the lock down restrictions and freedom of movement issues implemented by governments here and in the EU stopped us being able to travel. Hence chartering a private jet direct to New York.
Alfred is currently doing well with us here in the US and will not return to the UK. We will move here with him permanently and make our home in the one place that gave him a chance.
Kind regards, Anthony
So I am going to devote my next two posts to republishing two posts from Andrew’s blog. The first today is Coming to America.
The relief that knowing we would travel brought was unmeasurable. Private jets don’t come cheap, even discounted empty legs, but in this instance it didn’t matter. It was a welcome solution.
Up until the world was introduced to Covid-19, I had been a regular traveller to the US both with Renée who’s American, and on business as thinkerdoer work with a lot of US companies. I had an ESTA in place and checked it was still valid on Monday after we decided to take the flight to NYC. On Tuesday morning it was pulled! I’m still not sure why but it would seem to be a response from the Biden Administration to control the recently announced ‘UK variant’. Mark at Charter-A and his team scrambled to get clearance for me from the US using our marriage certificate from Cornwall to prove I was a spouse of a US citizen and this initially appeared to satisfy them and clearance given.
On Wednesday morning we set off to Stansted. Somewhere on the M11 the phone rang, it was Mark saying the US had pulled my clearance again due to me visiting ‘red list’ countries in the last few months. Utter nonsense, and I explained the last place I had travelled was the US just prior to the lockdown when I visited North Dakota and Arizona. I even volunteered my bank statements to prove my case. We waited at the Inflite Executive Jet Centre at Stansted with our luggage already loaded for clearance. Eventually the US backed down and removed their marker, but this now meant reapplying for entry. The decision was made to leave the jet on the tarmac overnight and return the following day to give us time to organise it. Partly this was because the crew had already started logging hours and by the time a clear to fly issued we’d need a new crew. Not that it would have mattered, but I thought I would not be flying and the one time in my life I have paid for a private jet it would be the dog flying on it, not me. And Renée of course.
“The best part was we were truly on our way to get Alfred some help, a chance to save him
Thursday went smoothly. We turned up, parked the car, got on the jet, flew to NYC. On a commercial flight there are little increments of comfort between Economy, Premium Economy, Business and First. Compared to flying private those classes of travel are all the same. No difference. It’s all cattle class. The whole aircraft to ourselves, big luxurious seats, a sofa, your own bathroom with Diptyque toiletries. Want a lay flat bed? Just tell your own crew and they make you one up. And Alfred was free to sit where he wanted, roam around, was fed a chicken dinner off a china plate, and was even able to chase a ball along the aisle. The best part was we were truly on our way to get Alfred some help, a chance to save him.
We didn’t need reminding of the difficulties ahead. The novelty of traveling like rock stars soon faded when mid flight he suffered a seizure. By now I am well versed in how to deal with this, and Renée is able to spot the warning signs with incredible accuracy. I got him to the bathroom with a soft towel and comforted him just as his little body went into a full grand mal seizure. Since his diagnosis Alfie had been on strong barbiturate and steroid medication which had suppressed the seizures. Something that would only last so long. We were 10 days without a seizure and this a clear indication the efficacy of the medication was reducing, and the tumour growing. We were arriving just in time.
Carry on allowance an improvement over commercial.
I am going to reproduce the contents of an email that I sent Anthony yesterday morning. It sums up how we feel about what Anthony and Renée are doing.
I have now read very carefully your blog especially your posts of the last few weeks.
They are beautiful. In the sense of describing what you feel towards Alfred. Dogs bond to humans unconditionally. You love Alfred unconditionally.
It’s a little after 5am here in Southern Oregon. Jean and I are sitting back on top of our bed having had recently our first morning coffees. On the bed is also Oliver, an ex-rescue Labrador crossed with a Border Collie. Oliver’s bond with me is so precious. Beyond words but not beyond feelings!
I am going to write a couple of posts that essentially republish your posts about you getting Alfred to Minneapolis. But beyond that Jean and I want to wish you every success in Alfred’s treatment. Is there anything more practical that we can do to help? We are in our 70s. We are both English. We met in Mexico in December, 2007. Jean was rescuing dogs, spay or neutering them, then finding homes for them mainly in Arizona. I flew with my GSD, Pharaoh, to LAX from London, in 2008. Then down to Mexico. We came to the USA in 2010 to be married and to live with our then 16 dogs. Subsequently we came to Oregon in 2012.
I am so grateful for my son highlighting your blog.
This is Agroveterinaria Los Paisas, a pet store and animal clinic in the town of Andalucia, Colombia.
It’s also the scene of a rather adorable crime.
The other day, Victoria Andrea Viviana was working in the shop, helping customers, when a certain someone evidently saw her distraction as a golden opportunity.
It was a dog. A dog with a plan.
While no one was looking, the dog quietly snuck into the store and slipped behind the counter. Then the object of his little mission became clear. He’d come to slyly steal a giant bone — but his getaway didn’t go unnoticed.
Here’s that scene on video:
“I was surprised by the cunning with which the dog took the bone,” Viviana told The Dodo. “One of our clients wanted to stop him, but he was very agile.”
The store had been robbed. But the culprit behind the crime was soon found out.
It was the dog’s own mom who turned him in.
“[The woman who owns the dog] came in to pay for the bone he stole, but we obviously didn’t take her money,” Vivian said. “It is something that happened unexpectedly, and the dog was able to amuse many people who watched the video.”
In the end, there were no hard feelings.
“The dog will always be welcome here,” Vivian said, “as well as any other animal who wants to visit.”
Not much more to say except that our dogs everywhere are extraordinary in their similarity.
In fact, I am composing a post about the evolution of dogs and humans to show how far back we all go. I am not sure when it will see the light of day!
The unconditional love of dogs put to a very beneficial human use!
Yesterday while we were waiting to pay for a few food items in Winco we stopped behind a woman with a small service dog. The dog was a Dachshund and had a jacket on which were sewn badges saying that this was a service dog and not to make contact.
The woman suffered from panic attacks and strongly recommended an organisation that was called ADA. In fact it is a government organisation and ADA stands for Americans with Disabilities Act.
PTSD, a mental health problem that some people develop after experiencing or witnessing a life-threatening traumatic event, is a complex condition and can be hard to treat. Our lab is studying whether service dogs can help these military veterans, who may also have depression and anxiety – and run an elevated risk of death by suicide – in addition to having PTSD.
The traditional treatments for PTSD, such as talk therapy and medication, do work for many veterans. But these approaches do not alleviate the symptoms for all veterans, so a growing number of them are seeking additional help from PTSD service dogs.
The nation’s estimated 500,000 service dogs aid people experiencing a wide array of conditions that include visual or hearing impairments, psychological challenges, epilepsy and multiple sclerosis.
Service dogs can help vets with PTSD in many ways. The most common tasks include helping veterans remain calm and interrupting their anxiety. The veterans said they are asking their dogs to calm or comfort them from anxiety five times per day and that their dogs independently interrupted their anxiety three times per day on average.
For example, a dog may “cover” a veteran at a supermarket, allowing its owner to calmly turn to take something off the shelf, because veterans with PTSD can get startled if they don’t know if someone is approaching and benefit if their dogs signal that this is happening. If a veteran starts to have a panic attack, a service dog can nudge its owner to “alert” and interrupt the anxiety. At that point, the veteran can focus on petting the dog to re-center on the present – ideally preventing or minimizing the panic attack.
Aside from the tasks that their dogs are trained to do, veterans also shared that the love and companionship they get from simply being with their dogs is helping make their PTSD easier to manage.
Once veterans got service dogs, they described themselves in surveys as more satisfied with their lives, said they felt a greater sense of well-being and deemed themselves as having better relationships with friends and loved ones.
Not all veterans are willing or able to benefit from having their own service dogs.
Being accompanied by dogs in public can draw attention to the veterans. Some veterans appreciate this attention and the way it encourages them to get out of their shell, while others dread having to avoid well-meaning, dog-loving strangers. We’ve found that veterans do not expect this challenge, but often experience it.
Service dogs can also make it harder to travel, since bringing a dog along can require more planning and effort, especially because many people don’t understand the legal rights of people with service dogs and may ask inappropriate questions or create barriers that they aren’t legally allowed to do. Many experts believe educating the public about service dogs could alleviate these challenges.
What’s more, feeding, walking, grooming and otherwise taking care of a dog also entails additional responsibilities, including making sure they see a veterinarian from time to time.
There can also be a new sense of stigma that goes along with making a disability that might otherwise be hidden readily apparent. Someone who has PTSD might not stick out until they get a service dog that is always present.
Most veterans say it’s worth it because the benefits tend to outweigh the challenges, especially when appropriate expectations are set. Clinicians can play a role in helping veterans realize in advance what caring for the animal entails, to make the intervention positive for both the veterans and the dogs.
We are now completing the first registered clinical trial comparing what happens when these veterans get the usual PTSD interventions with what happens when they get that same treatment in addition to a trained service dog.
As our research proceeds, we are trying to see how the effects of a service dog last over time, how the service dogs affect veterans’ families and how we can support the partnership between veterans and their service dogs.
I am still struggling with WordPress. For example I haven’t yet worked out how to place the credit for the photograph underneath the picture. (It did it all on its own!) And there doesn’t seem to be a ‘blockquote’ command.
But coming back to the article it was a perfect description of the way that dogs are so, so good to us humans whether we have a medical need for a service dog or not.
On the 21st January I received the following email:
Hi, I’m Evan;
I’m a pet lover and blogger at https://petsroof.com. I’ve been following the excellent work you guys are doing at Learning From Dogs. I’m writing to inquire whether you accept guest posts or link insertions on your site? If so, how much is the price?
Looking forward to your reply.
Of course I was interested and after telling Evan that I didn’t charge for guest posts he then sent me the following:
Make Dog Treats Yourself: 3 Easy and Quick Recipes
Oh, is the dog biscuit jar empty again? Then it’s time to replenish them. But who says that you always have to buy more dog treats? You can also easily make them yourself! We’ll show you how it’s done and present you with 3 super easy dog treats recipes.
Baking dog biscuits yourself: the advantages of DIY treats
Making dog treats yourself has one major advantage above all: you always know what’s in the dog biscuits. Unfortunately, many industrially produced dog treats contain dyes and preservatives. Flavor enhancers, sugar, and artificial flavors are also not uncommon. With your homemade dog treats, you know 100% what is inside – and you can take into account the individual needs, demands, preferences, and, if applicable, allergies of your four-legged friend.
Since your DIY dog treats are mostly based on a few natural ingredients, they are particularly healthy, natural, and easy to digest. In addition, making dog treats yourself is often much cheaper than buying ready-made dog treats, because the ingredients do not cost much.
What ingredients are allowed in dog biscuits?
When it comes to baking your own dog treats, there are almost no limits to your imagination. As in all other areas of dog nutrition, you should avoid prohibited, unhealthy and poisonous foods for dogs in your DIY biscuits. These include chocolate, alcohol, cocoa, grapes and sugar. Otherwise, you can use just about any food that your dog likes and benefits his health. The diverse selection of foods gives you unlimited recipe options. It is important that you can puree the food into a dough and bake it.
The most popular ingredients that keep appearing in many recipes are:
fish, e.g. tuna
whole wheat flour
What’s the best way to store homemade dog biscuits?
A big advantage of homemade dog treats is that they do not contain any preservatives. However, this also means that they do not last as long as industrially manufactured products. As a rule, the dog treats are plastered off relatively quickly – that’s how it should be!
Nevertheless, you can turn a few adjusting screws to ensure the longest possible durability.
In general, the drier the homemade dog biscuits are, the longer they last. Moist dog treats can unfortunately mold quickly – you should definitely avoid that! To dry out your homemade dog treats as well as possible, you can do the following:
After baking, let the biscuits dry out in the oven (with the oven door open and 50–100° C).
Do not pack the DIY dog biscuits in a can immediately after cooling, but leave them in the air for half a day to a full day before you store them.
Pack the dog treats in classic tin cookie jars or in fabric bags so that no moisture can develop inside. Airtight plastic is unsuitable.
Choose ingredients that have a long shelf life. Whole grains and oats, for example, last longer than meat and fish.
As a rule of thumb, homemade dog treats can be kept for around 3 to 4 weeks on average. The shelf life is extended by several weeks in the refrigerator as long as no moisture penetrates. They can be stored frozen for several months.
DIY dog treats: 3 simple and tasty recipes
The good thing about our delicious DIY dog biscuits is that you don’t need a lot of ingredients or fancy kitchen utensils for them. The easiest way to implement the recipes is with a food processor or a strong one. Alternatively, you can use a hand blender or even a simple whisk to prepare the dough for your DIY dog treats. In addition, cookie cutters and a rolling pin will make your work easier. If you don’t have them at hand, the cookies can also be shaped easily by hand.
Which recipe is “right” for you? Below we present our 3 favorite recipes for homemade dog biscuits. If one or the other recipe doesn’t quite suit you and your dog, we want to motivate you to try it out. There are many recipe ideas on the internet, but only you know your dog’s preferences and needs.
Therefore: Just get started, try out our recipes, and vary them from time to time. Look what supplies you still have at home and then simply test your baking skills!
Recipe # 1: Tuna treats
Preparation time (including baking time): approx. 35 min
1 can of tuna (in its own juice)
130g oat flakes (alternatively: whole grain or potato flour)
Parsley or rosemary
How to make it:
Mix all ingredients together with a mixer or whisk. Add enough oat flakes or flour to make a firm but malleable dough. Now shape the biscuits as large as you want and bake them at 150°C for about 30 minutes. The baking time can vary depending on the size and thickness of the biscuits. Let your DIY tuna biscuits dry in the switched-off oven.
Store tuna dog biscuits in the refrigerator depending on the quantity.
Large portions of the fish biscuits that you will not use up within a short time should be stored in a dry, protected place in the refrigerator. This extends the shelf life of the protein-rich snacks. Depending on your needs, you can also freeze the biscuits and store them for several months.
Recipe No. 2: Cheese crunchy pearls
Preparation time (including baking time): approx. 35 min
100g of grated cheese
100g of cottage cheese
50g crumbled crispbread (or crunchy oat flakes)
1 tbsp sunflower oil
some water if the batter is too firm
How to make it:
Mix all the ingredients together (ideally with a hand blender) and shape the dough into small balls. Place the cheese balls on a baking sheet lined with baking paper and press them into small thalers with a tablespoon. Bake the DIY dog biscuits at 180°C top and bottom heat for about 25 minutes and then let them air dry for one night.
Recipe No. 3: Liver sausage cookies
Preparation time (including baking time): approx. 40 min
125g liver sausage
250g of oatmeal
150g of cottage cheese
5 tbsp sunflower oil
flour for rolling
How to make it:
Mix all the ingredients together to create a creamy mass. Let the dough rest in the refrigerator for about 1 hour and then roll it out on a floured work surface (about 1 cm thick). If the dough is too wet to roll out, add more oatmeal. You can read more in the article “Can dogs eat oatmeal cookies?”
Pierce or cut out your DIY dog biscuits as you wish and bake them for about 30 minutes at 150°C (180°C top and bottom heat). Allow the liver sausage biscuits to air dry overnight before stowing them in a cookie jar.
Homemade dog treats for in between or as a healthy gift idea
Baking dog treats yourself is fun, healthy, does not cost a lot, and is easier than you think! Over time, you will learn which ingredients work best for you and your four-legged friend, and you can make them happy with tasty DIY biscuits.
Since you alone determine the size, ingredients and taste of your homemade dog biscuits, you can bake delicious chews as well as small training bites that your dog can tolerate well. The DIY dog biscuits are also suitable as a great gift idea for other dog owners – ideal for Christmas, for a birthday or just for in between. Great fun for all dog lovers!
I think these are great.
What would be lovely is to hear from someone who has made the treats (and I haven’t yet shown the menus to Jeannie). Even better for that person to write up a guest post for this place.
Midwestern Pet Foods Recalls Multiple Dog and Cat Food Brands
March 27, 2021 — Midwestern Pet Foods of Evansville, Indiana is recalling multiple brands of dog and cat food because they have the potential to be contaminated with disease-causing Salmonella bacteria.
Recalled products include specific lots of CanineX, Earthborn Holistic, Venture, Unrefined, Sportmix Wholesomes, Pro Pac, Pro Pac Ultimates, Sportstrail, Sportmix and Meridian produced at its production facility in Monmouth, Illinois.
Salmonella can affect animals eating the products and there is risk to humans from handling contaminated pet 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.
Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting.
Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain.
Infected but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans.
If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.
No human or pet illnesses have been reported to date.
Where Were the Products Sold?
Products were distributed to retail store nationwide and to online retailers.
Lot code information may be found on the back of the bags with the following format: “EXP AUG/02/22/M1/L#”
This recall covers only certain products manufactured at Midwestern Pet Foods Monmouth, Illinois facility.
The unique Monmouth Facility identifier is located in the date code as an “M”.
What Caused the Recall?
The recall was as the result of a routine sampling program by the company which revealed that the finished products may contain the bacteria.
What to Do?
Retailers and distributors should immediately pull recalled lots from their inventory and shelves.
Do not sell or donate the recalled products.
Retailers are encouraged to contact consumers that have purchased the recalled products if the means to do so exists.
Do not feed the recalled products to pets or any other animals.
Destroy the food in a way that children, pets and wildlife cannot access them.
Wash and sanitize pet food bowls, cups and storage containers.
Always ensure you wash and sanitize your hands after handling recalled food or any utensils that come in contact with recalled food.
For more information, contact Midwestern Pet Foods Consumer Affairs at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or call 800-474-4163, ext 455, from 8 AM to 5 PM CT, Monday through Friday.
This voluntary recall is being conducted in cooperation with the US Food and Drug Administration. All other Midwestern Pet Foods products are unaffected by this recall.
This was a story that appeared in my ‘in box’ yesterday afternoon but I didn’t want all the clutter that came with it. No problem because there were a number of videos on YouTube and I selected one that seemed to capture the essence of the story.
I wasn’t going to publish a post for today because I had to go to the dentist yesterday for an 11 am appointment. In the afternoon the aesthetic was still making my jaw a little ‘sleepy’. But then I saw this article about a particular dog loving blueberries and figured is was too good to overlook. The article was published in The Dodo.
You will undoubtedly agree with me!
Dog Has Cared For Every Blueberry Her Mom Has Ever Given Her
Ava is an incredibly sweet and caring dog, and one of her favorite things in life has always been toys.
“Any time anything happens, her answer is to bring over a toy,” Talia Henze, Ava’s mom, told The Dodo. “And I mean any time. If anyone laughs, if she sees anyone sad, she gets up and brings over a toy.”
One day, Ava was watching her mom snack on some blueberries. She looked so curious that Henze decided to give her one. She thought Ava would enjoy having a little treat, but instead, for some reason, she decided to treat the blueberry exactly like one of her toys.
“She’s been trained to only eat her treats and long-lasting chew stuff on her elevated bed or in her crate, so she naturally just brings new toys, treats, etc. to those places,” Henze said. “So it didn’t surprise me that she brought the berry to it. But she just never ate it.”
Instead, Ava gently carried the blueberry around, caring for it tenderly. She showed absolutely no interest in having it as a snack. Her mom thought maybe she just didn’t understand what it was and tried to show her, but it was no use. The blueberry had become Ava’s friend, and that was that.
“She kind of just carried it around to her different places for a while and snuggled it,” Henze said. “When she eventually got bored and left it in her crate, I tried showing her [how] to eat it by breaking it open … She wanted nothing to do with it when it was broken.”
Now, every time Henze gives Ava a blueberry, the same exact thing happens. They’ve become one of her favorite toys, and it’s the cutest quirky habit ever.
“So I know she doesn’t really like eating them, but every time I eat blueberries she seems to want one,” Henze said. “So I just give her one every time … She tried to eat one once when I really encouraged it, but she just spat it out.”
To Ava, blueberries are friends, not food. They’re her little buddies, and that’s never going to change.
No one has any idea why Ava loves playing with blueberries so much, or why she’s so opposed to actually eating them. Her mom doesn’t question it anymore, though. It’s just a part of who Ava is, and that’s perfectly OK with her.
Dogs are as much a mystery at times as they are pure companions. This is an example of a dog, Ava, who has set her mind on something and that is it! All of us dog carers know this about the animal. I guess there’s a logic to the way that a dog thinks even though that logic is beyond reach to us humans.
But that is one of the many characteristics that makes the dog so precious and so adorable.