Every Pet Deserves A Good Home…

Halloween Pet Fun… Looking Back

Looking back at some fun Halloween moments with our gang and friends…




Dad Can We Please Take Off Our Costumes - Halloween 2008-2 sm



 Snow White (and Tan) Angel

Happy Halloween 2013 From the Gang at Just One More Pet

2013 Annual NYC Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade – Haunted Hounds

‘Until One Has Loved an Animal, Part of Their Sour Remains Unawakened’

October 31, 2013 Posted by | Animal and Pet Photos, Chihuahua, Chiweenie, Dogs, Dogs, Holidays With Pets, Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, pet fun | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

2013 Annual NYC Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade – Haunted Hounds

"The 23rd Annual Halloween Dog Parade held at New York`s Tompkins Square Park was nothing short of amazing. From a twerking Miley Cyrus atop a canine version of Robin Thicke, to Walter White from `Breaking Bad`".

Huffington Post: Behold, the best dressed of the day:


ice cream truck








star wars family

lion dog

michael jackson dog


beach bum



food truck pup

mammoth dog


wrecking ball

walter white



bball dog


starbucks pup

(Photo Credit: Hayden Rockwell) More photos at Site 

2012 NYC Annual Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade – Haunted Hounds

5 Halloween Safety Tips for Your Cats and Dogs 

Halloween Fun Photos… Hope You Have a Good One!

Creative Pet Halloween Costumes 

Fun Faces of Halloween


Patriot Pup Halloween Costumes 2012… 

Costumes for Pet Birds and the Five Top Halloween Dangers to Pet Birds

Halloween Lobster

October 30, 2013 Posted by | Animal and Pet Photos, Chihuahua, Chiweenie, Dogs, Dogs, Holidays With Pets, Just One More Pet, Pet Events, Pet Friendship and Love, pet fun, Pets | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

5 Halloween Safety Tips for Your Cats and Dogs

 Dad Can We Please Take Off Our Costumes - Halloween 2008-2 sm

Parade with some JOMP embellishments: Halloween is a fun holiday for kids and adults. Unfortunately, it’s not always the best time of year for cats and dogs. Here are five tips to keep your pets safe.

1. No Sweets for Your Sweetie

Several popular Halloween treats are toxic to pets. Candies containing the artificial sweetener xylitol can be poisonous to dogs. Even small amounts of xylitol sweetener can cause a sudden drop in blood sugar, which leads to lack of coordination and seizures. Chocolate, especially baker’s and dark chocolate, can also be potentially poisonous to animals, especially dogs. Symptoms of significant chocolate ingestion may include vomiting, diarrhea, hyperactivity, increased thirst and urination, heart rhythm abnormalities, and even seizures. If  your dog or cat accidentally ingests any potentially harmful products and you need emergency advice, please consult with your veterinarian immediately.  Raisins and macadamia nuts are also no-no foods for pets.

2. Watch Out for Those Wrappers

Cats love to play with candy wrappers, but ingesting aluminum foil or cellophane can cause intestinal blockage and induce vomiting.

3. Careful with Costumes

If you dress up your pet for Halloween, make sure the costume does not limit his movement, hearing, sight, or ability to breathe, bark, or drink. Also check the costume for choking hazards.  Also make sure the costumes are inflammable. A simple festive Halloween bandana can be A smart alternative to dressing your pet from head-to-paw, especially if they don’t like dressing up!

4. Decorations Can Be Dangerous

Re-think putting candles in jack-o-lanterns. Pets can easily knock these over and start a fire, and curious kittens are particularly at risk of getting burned by candle flames. (There are many alternatives to candles and open flames these days.) Also take care to prevent your pets from having access to wires and cords from holiday decorations. If chewed, a wire can damage your pet’s mouth with shards of glass or plastic, or deliver a potentially lethal electrical shock.

5. Trick-or-Treating is for Kids, not Pets

During trick-or-treating hours, it’s generally best to keep pets in a room away from your front door. Halloween brings a flurry of activity with visitors constantly arriving at the door, and pets may escape the safety of your home. Make sure your pet is wearing a collar with identification tags.

*TIP: If you have social pets, who like people and like to dress-up, put up a babygate at the door.  That cuts down on the door bell rings.

**And every pet is different… I used to live in a close knit neighborhood where several of the supervising parents took their big dogs (labs and setters) out with them as they walked with their kids to trick or treat and one took her Chihuahua out in a costume in her purse… but these are exceptions rather that the rule.


Halloween Pet Treats

Your pets don’t have to be left out of the fun.  You can make delicious pet friendly Halloween treats that they’ll enjoy. Pounce on over here for easy-to-make treats for your cats, dogs, and horses. And have a safe and fun Halloween.

By Michele C. Hollow  who writes the pet-friendly blog Pet News and Views. She is the author of The Everything Guide to Working with Animals: From dog groomer to wildlife rescuer – tons of great jobs for animal lovers (Everything (Pets) (Kindle), and is working on a book about a WWI service dog.

*Be sure to check back here at Just One More Pet throughout the week for more Halloween and holiday tips for pet parents and for lots of fun Halloween pet photos.

October 28, 2013 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, Chihuahua, Chiweenie, Dogs, Dogs, Holidays With Pets, Just One More Pet, Pet Friendship and Love, Pet Health, Pet Nutrition, Pets, responsible pet ownership, We Are All God's Creatures | , , , , , | 3 Comments

Gentle Giant George, Tallest Dog, Dies

The world has lost a gentle giant.

Giant George, verified as the world’s tallest dog by Guinness World Records, died last Thursday, one month before his eighth birthday.  The official verification changed both his life and the life of his owners overnight.  George held the official record for tallest dog from 2010 – 2012.

“It is with a heavy heart that we announce Giant George died on Thursday, October 17, 2013,” his owners, David and Christine Nasser, posted on GiantGeorge.com. “George passed away peacefully surrounded by loved ones … We appreciate the love and support you have given Giant George over the last several years.”

NC giant george nt 131024 16x9 608 Giant George   The Worlds Tallest Dog Has Died

(Photo Credit: Zuma/Newscom)

Giant George, 3 feet, 7 inches from paw to his shoulder; almost seven feet long, and weighed approximately 245 pounds.  He was known for his appearance on shows like “Live with Regis & Kelly” and “Good Morning America.”

The Great Dane, owned by Dave and Christie Nasser, was actually the runt of the litter, according to the website.

“Eager to play … this big Great Dane was scared of water, scared of dogs a fraction of his size (including Chihuahuas) and most of all, was scared of being alone”, the site said.

The owners donated a percentage of Giant George merchandise to animal charities and in 2011, donated more than $500 to a Japanese animal shelter after the country was hit hard by both an earthquake and tsunami.

Family, friends and fans have all posted to George’s Facebook page with their condolences.

“Thanks to the Nasser family for sharing him with the world. He will be missed,” one fan wrote.

Also see: Imagine taking him for walkies! George the Great Dane is 7ft long, weighs 18stones and is the world’s biggest dog… but he’s terrified of Chihuahuas; lots of photos.

Giant George’s Owner Thanks Fans For Support, Not Ready For Another Dog


World’s Oldest Dog Dies At Age 26….Requiescat in pace… although like with all records, there are now 27 and 28 year old Dachshunds and a 32 year old Chihuahua.

Pint-Sized Pinto Born in New Hampshire May Be World’s Smallest Horse

World’s Smallest Horse

Harbor the Coonhound Has the ‘Longest Ears on a Living Dog’

Life in a Dog Pack: Old Age

How Long Will Your Dog Be with You? It Depends Heavily on This…

A Dog’s Life… Can Be Longer Than You Think…

Part 2 of Dr. Becker’s Interview with Bestselling Author Ted Kerasote: The Seven Factors that Determine How Long Your Dog Will Live

Pukka’s Promise: The Quest for Longer-Lived Dogs, by Bestselling Author Ted Kerasote – Available in Bookstores This Week!

Help Your Dying Pet End Life in a Kind and Gentle Way

‘Until One Has Loved an Animal, Part of Their Sour Remains Unawakened’

Rainbow Bridge…

Heaven and Pets


Giant George

Pukka’s Promise: The Quest for Longer-Lived Dogs

Canine and Feline Geriatric Oncology: Honoring the Human-Animal Bond (Kindle)

Help Your Dog Fight Cancer: What Every Caretaker Should Know About Canine Cancer, Featuring Bullet’s Survival Story, 2nd Edition

October 27, 2013 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, Chihuahua, Dogs, Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pet Friendship and Love, Pets, We Are All God's Creatures | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Birds Count on Drivers to Obey Speed Limits

Story at-a-glance
  • A new study concludes that birds on roadways make decisions about when to lift off to safety based not on how fast an oncoming car is approaching, but on the average traffic speeds of a given road.
  • Two researchers in Canada recorded dozens of instances of birds taking flight as they approached in a car. Based on their measurements of flight initiation distances and other factors, the pair concluded that birds accumulate traffic speed information over a period of days, weeks, months or longer, and use that information to decide when to fly to safety in the face of oncoming traffic.
  • This study suggests bird-vehicle collisions are primarily the result of people driving over the speed limit, and birds being taken by surprise by the excessive speed of a vehicle. These results are another reminder of the importance of obeying speed limits.

Birds in Flight

By Dr. Becker

If you’ve come upon birds in the roadway while you’re out driving (and who hasn’t), as you slowed down to give them time to get out of the way, you might have wondered exactly what it is that finally causes them to scatter or take flight. Do they suddenly see your vehicle? Do they hear it? And why is it that something as huge and threatening as an oncoming automobile doesn’t scare them off long before you get close enough to notice them?

A new study published August 21 in Biology Letters1 may provide at least a partial answer.

Birds on Roadways Assess Average Speeds Traveled

According to Pierre Legagneux, behavioral ecologist at the University of Quebec and one of the study authors, birds estimate highway speed limits to determine how much time they need to get safely airborne in the face of oncoming traffic. This comes as a bit of a surprise, since it has been generally assumed birds in roadways gauge the speed of each vehicle as it heads in their direction.

In the new study, Legagneux and Simon Ducatez of McGill University in Montreal conclude that birds observe the speed at which cars travel over a certain road for many days, weeks, months or longer, and build a memory map based on the average speed. As cars approach, they access their memory maps and make decisions about when it’s time to lift off.

According to Phys.org the researchers, armed with a stopwatch, drove the roadways and timed how long it took birds ahead of them in the roadway to take flight. When a bird flew in front of them, they timed the seconds it took to drive at a constant speed to the point of flight. They called this measure the Flight Initiation Distance (FID). Then they stopped to measure the distance traveled. Next, they varied the speed at which they drove, sometimes going under the speed limit, sometimes over it, and sometimes moving at the speed limit.

They also tested birds on different roads with different speed limits, from 20 kilometers per hour (12 mph) to 110 kilometers per hour (68 mph). This is how they discovered the birds weren’t using the speed of individual cars to make decisions, but rather the average speeds driven on different roads.

They also discovered that birds hanging out in the middle of the road took flight sooner than those standing closer to the side of the road.

The researchers recorded a total of 134 instances of birds taking flight. Over 20 species were involved in the study, with over half from just three species: carrion crows, house sparrows and Eurasian blackbirds. Bigger, heavier birds tended to have longer FIDs than smaller birds. And FIDs grew longer for all birds as the speed limit increased.

The study suggests most vehicle-bird accidents on roadways are the result of drivers exceeding the speed limit. Since a great many birds are killed by cars, this study gives us all another good reason not to drive over the speed limit.


What You Should Know Before Rescuing Baby Birds Outdoors…

Birds’ Singing Voices Change with the Weather

Pigeons: These Unremarkable Birds Are Remarkably Smart

October 26, 2013 Posted by | animal behavior, Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Related Education, Just One More Pet, Wild Animals | 1 Comment

Sefton, a cavalry horse who refused to die


The Mellow Jihadi: Throughout WWII Hitler tried to destroy the morale of the British people by blitzing London and major British cities around the United Kingdom. He did so in the hope that Great Britain would capitulate through the fierce fire storms, death and destruction dropped from above. He failed, and he failed miserably. It made the British stand stronger, and bond closer together.  Below: 1996. Manchester city centre, aftermath of an IRA 1000 Ib bomb


In the 70′s, 80′s & 90′s, Irish terrorists brought their indiscriminate bombing campaign to mainland Britain; they took many innocent lives, and destroyed many more, as well as severely damaged property and infrastructure. They failed miserably in their effort to make the British public cower, they only succeeded in strengthening their resolve. The cowardly terrorists had obviously learned nothing from their history lessons at school. This was proven more so when they left a large remote IED, packed heavily with ‘dockyard confetti’ at Horse guards parade in London on the 20th July 1982. Several minutes after the blast


Hidden in a blue Austin car parked on South Carriage Drive in Hyde Park, the IED was detonated remotely, as Queen Elizabeth II’s official bodyguard regiment, the Household Cavalry rode past it during the Changing of the Guard procession from their barracks in Knightsbridge to Buckingham Palace. Three soldiers of the Blues & Royals were killed instantly, another died three days later from his injuries. The other soldiers in the procession were all badly wounded as shrapnel and nails sprayed them as well as the crowd of tourists assembled to watch the parade, causing further injuries. Seven of the regiment’s horses were also killed or had to be euthanized because of their injuries.


Among the horses that were seriously wounded and peppered with shrapnel was one that stood out more than any other. Sefton, a strong but gentle black gelding. Sefton’s injuries were serious. They included a severed jugular vein, wounded right eye and 34 wounds covering his body. Sergeant Michael Pedersen, who was riding him, noted that Sefton responded so competently that when the bomb exploded there was no chance of him being thrown off. But Sgt Pedersen, who, in full state uniform and in severe shock, could do little to help Sefton. Another Trooper, one of many who had run down from the barracks after hearing the huge explosion, took off his shirt and used it to apply pressure to Sefton’s severe neck wound to staunch the blood flowing from it.


Sefton & Sgt PedersonSefton went through eight hours of surgery. Each of his 34 wounds were potentially life-threatening, in some cases shrapnel had to be taken out of his bones. Veterinary surgeons gave him a 50/50 chance of surviving the shock and extreme blood loss. Yet over the coming months he made good progress .

During his time in the veterinary hospital he received thousands of cards (and mints) from the public. Donations amounting to almost £620,000 (over £ One Million today) were collected to build a new surgical wing at the Royal Veterinary College, which was named the Sefton Surgical Wing.   In August 1984 he retired from the Household Cavalry, and moved to the Home of Rest For Horses in Speen, Buckinghamshire, where he lived until the age of 30. He finally had to be put to sleep on the 9th of July 1993, due to lameness, a complication of the injuries he suffered during the bombing. When the horse died Michael Pedersen was left in floods of tears and uttered the immortal line: “St Peter won’t need to open the pearly gates, because old Sefton will fly over them.” Sgt Pederson & Sefton on duty Sefton has once again been remembered, as Princess Anne is due to unveil a life-sized statue of him. The horse that symbolised hope after 1982 IRA Hyde Park bomb attack


Born in Ireland, Sefton joined the Army in 1967. He was 16 hands high and spent the early years of his army career as a school horse, teaching new recruits to ride. In 1975, despite having socks and a blaze, he found his way into the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment, which normally recruited only totally black horses. The Household Cavalry chartered and recorded that he was a horse of great courage and character.


Household Cavalry tradition dictates that horses’ names are re-used, which ensures that Sefton’s memory will always be honoured. AJuly 20 Bombings.IMAG0101 monument to the atrocity was erected on the spot where the bomb went off in Hyde Park.

Each day, on the Changing of the Guard procession from their barracks in Knightsbridge to Buckingham Palace, the mounted guard honours it with an eyes left, and a salute with drawn swords.  Click to enlarge

We will never be beaten by extremists & terrorists, they may claim short victories over their cowardly attacks, after which they slither away to hide under slime covered rocks. But we will never leave any rock unturned in finding them, and bringing them to justice.           

Yours Aye.

October 23, 2013 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Pet Friendship and Love, Service and Military Animals, Unusual Stories, We Are All God's Creatures | 1 Comment

Can’t Find a Holistic Vet? Here’s Why That’s About to Change

Story at-a-glance

  • Today, Dr. Becker kicks off a new series of interviews called Highlighting the Healer, in which she will interview holistic veterinarians and practitioners from around the globe. In this first group of interviews, Dr. Becker talks with three veterinary students and two new DVMs about incorporating alternative therapies into an integrative veterinary practice.
  • Dr. Becker first interviews Alli Troutman, a fourth-year student at the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine. Alli’s grandfather was the only veterinarian in a small town in Iowa and he was her inspiration for becoming a vet. Alli will graduate from UW not only with traditional veterinary training, but also with certificates in animal acupuncture and chiropractic. And she already has a job waiting for her!
  • Next, Dr. Becker talks with Danielle Conway, also a UW student, who shares an interesting technique she developed to overcome her squeamishness about surgery. When she graduates from UW this year, Danielle will also hold certificates in traditional Chinese veterinary medicine, acupuncture, and veterinary spinal manipulation therapy. The next stop for Danielle will be an internship at North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine in Raleigh.
  • The third student Dr. Becker interviews is Joanne Lin of the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. Joanne shares her fascinating background and the interesting route she traveled that led her to UC Davis and the study of veterinary medicine. After graduation and some time practicing small animal medicine, Joanne’s long-term goal is to open a hospice/rescue sanctuary for animals.
  • Dr. Becker’s fourth interview is with Dr. Rhiannon Fenton, a recent graduate of Western University who has already built a wonderful holistic equine practice that includes training problem horses. And finally, Dr. Becker interviews Dr. Carrie Donahue, who has been practicing integrative veterinary medicine for about three years now. Carrie demonstrates an actual acupuncture session on one of her elderly canine patients.

Video:  Dr. Becker: Highlighting the Healer Series

By Dr. Becker

Today, I’m beginning a new interview series called "Highlighting the Healer," in which I plan to interview holistic veterinary practitioners around the globe. In this first segment, I’ll be talking with three veterinary students – Alli Troutman and Danielle Conway from the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine, and Joanne Lin from the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine — who have elected to incorporate integrative medicine modalities into their repertoire while they are still in vet school. In addition, I’ll also be chatting with two new recently graduated Doctors of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Rhiannon Fenton and Dr. Carrie Donahue.

Interview #1: Veterinary Student Alli Troutman

My first guest is Alli Troutman, who is a senior at the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine.

I asked Alli to explain when and why she decided to become a veterinarian. Alli replied that her grandfather was a vet; actually the only veterinarian for a small town in Iowa. She grew up visiting him at his office and going on occasional calls with him. At just five years of age, she was telling people, “I want to be a vet when I grow up.”

As she reached middle school, Alli was still interested in becoming a vet. She started shadowing veterinarians at clinics in her area. Her interest remained as she entered high school, and during that time she completed a year-long mentorship where she spent an hour a day, every day at a veterinary clinic.

While in college, Alli did more shadowing and worked in the large animal surgery department at UW’s veterinary school. After three years as an undergraduate, Alli applied to the vet school and was accepted.

I asked Alli if she plans to pursue her desire to join a mixed animal practice (one that serves both large and small animals) when she graduates. She replied that she’s definitely open to it. Her acupuncture and chiropractic training involved both large and small animals. Alli says she certainly doesn’t want to rule out a mixed animal practice, but when she graduates, she’ll be living in Milwaukee, and there aren’t a lot of cows in Milwaukee!

Alli Decides to Pursue Training in Alternative Therapies in Addition to Her Regular Vet School Coursework

Next, I asked Alli how she decided while still in vet school that she was interested in incorporating modalities like acupuncture and chiropractic into her career. She answered that although she didn’t know much about integrative medicine before vet school, she was lucky to have an excellent integrative veterinary medicine club at the school. She also had classmates who were very interested in integrative medicine. She decided to attend a few luncheons and lectures, and it was acupuncture that really caught her interest.

Alli and five of her classmates took the Chi Institute course online, which meant they didn’t have to miss much school to complete the course. She says the UW vet school was supportive, even though she and her classmates were viewed as sort of the “odd ducks” of the group.

I’m really glad to hear that Alli’s school was supportive. Twenty years ago when I was in my senior year of vet school, I went to the dean and asked permission to take some non-traditional courses, and it was a really difficult thing to get done, for a number of reasons. Schools offering courses in acupuncture and other alternative therapies typically didn’t accept anyone still in vet school. I also had to fly to attend classes, so it was a big, complicated deal.

Now, 20 years later, there are actually integrative programs in vet schools, which is wonderful. Alternative therapy certifications are easier to attain, and access to non-traditional courses is easier to achieve.

Allie was able to earn her animal acupuncture certification in her third year of vet school. During her fourth year, she attended animal chiropractic courses in Kansas. To get that done, she took what is called an “Other Option Track,” which is a program designed for students whose educational needs cannot be entirely met within the vet school. Alli explained that pursuing her chiropractic certification was definitely far outside the norm for vet school students. She felt acupuncture was much more accepted than chiropractic, probably because the UW School of Veterinary Medicine opened their own acupuncture service a few years ago.

Alli Already Has a Job Waiting for Her With an Integrative Practice After She Graduates

I asked Alli what types of veterinary practices she’ll be looking at after she graduates. Will she want to work for a practice that already practices integrative medicine? Or is she thinking about joining a traditional practice and starting an integrative department?

Alli responded that she definitely wants to work where she can use her acupuncture and chiropractic training. She doesn’t feel it’s even an option to join a practice where she wouldn’t be allowed to use those therapies in her treatment of patients. She says she’s willing to be the first vet in an existing practice to do acupuncture and chiropractic, as long as everyone else in the practice is open to the idea.

I asked Alli if she’s found some practices yet that are open to alternative/integrative modalities and she replied that she has. And in fact, she has been offered – and has accepted – a job upon graduation!

She’s joining a practice that currently offers laser therapy, and they are very excited about adding acupuncture and chiropractic to their list of services. So they are welcoming Alli with open arms!

I think it’s absolutely wonderful that Alli was able to get complimentary therapy certifications under her belt while still in vet school, so she can graduate prepared to hit the ground running at a veterinary practice that wants to take advantage of her integrative approach to medicine.

Alli feels she’s only scratched the surface of the modalities available in integrative medicine. She’s a member of the national board of the student chapter of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association (AHVMA) and was able to attend their conference a couple of years ago. She was overwhelmed at the amount of information provided at the conference and it made her want to learn more.

I asked Alli what type of course she’s thinking of taking next, or if she plans to master her acupuncture and chiropractic skills first before picking up a new skill. She replied that what she wants to do and what she probably should do are two different things. She wants to learn more about alternative therapies, but she knows she needs to spend time perfecting her traditional medicine, acupuncture and chiropractic skills first.

With that said, Alli thinks she’d like to study herbals next, followed by a rehabilitation course. I shared that next on my list is to become a certified aromatherapist. For some of us, the learning never stops. We’re driven to learn more so that we can offer more to our patients.

I’m confident Alli will be a true blessing to any community in which she practices veterinary medicine, and I want to thank her for talking with me today and helping me kick off my new series, Highlighting the Healer.

Interview #2: Veterinary Student Danielle Conway

My next guest today is Danielle Conway. At the time I interviewed her, Danielle was just about to graduate from the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine.

I asked Danielle to explain a little about why she decided to become a veterinarian. She responded that she believes she was born with the “vet gene!” She believes every young female feels the need to rescue random critters from around the neighborhood and bring them home. But, Danielle was the squeamish type. Once, while watching a surgery being performed in a barn, she passed out, tumbled into a fire extinguisher and came to surrounded by a green fog! At that point she decided maybe being a veterinarian wasn’t for her.

So Danielle worked in the biotech industry for a while. She got a degree in microbiology and then sort of backpedaled her way into veterinary medicine. She worked for a veterinarian and he said, “You should be a vet.” And so today, she is becoming one!

I asked if working for the vet helped her get over her squeamishness. Danielle said that it did, but she also devised a plan of her own to overcome the problem. She started by watching videos. She made herself focus on the anatomy of the animals in the videos and tried to avoid identifying with the animals themselves and the pain they were feeling.

I think that was an excellent strategy – viewing videos. It’s a way to gradually desensitize yourself to all the sights, sounds and smells of surgery, as well as the emotions it can invoke. Danielle says she’s proof you can get over a problem with squeamishness!

How Danielle Knew Integrative Veterinary Medicine Was In Her Future

Next, I asked Danielle if she was raised in an environment where integrative treatments were the norm. She replied that indeed she was, and went on to explain that she was very ill as a child. There was talk of radical surgery. She was constantly in the hospital with pneumonia that would linger for long periods. Finally, her parents decided, “There’s got to a better option than this. There’s got to be something else out there.” So they took Danielle to a naturopath.

After a few rounds of herbs, homeopathy and acupuncture, she was able to be a normal kid again – play in the mud, have pets, and enjoy a fun quality of life.

I asked Danielle if she went to vet school knowing she wanted to be part of an integrative practice. She replied that she absolutely did, and in fact, that was her goal – to become an integrative veterinarian.

I asked Danielle how she was able to blend integrative training – alternative therapies –with her traditional coursework. She answered that she jumped in right away. Like Alli Troutman, Danielle got involved with the school’s strong integrative medicine club and participated in seeking outside speakers and hosting nutrition conferences. She said it was a good way to reinvigorate herself when she grew tired of memorizing lists of body parts or pathophysiologic processes. She would recharge her batteries by going out and finding the next exciting speaker to come talk to the club at a luncheon or conference.

Danielle found many of the speakers inspirational. There were homeopaths, acupuncturists, rehab specialists, chiropractors, and traditional Chinese medicine practitioners. She found herself wanting to do it all, and all at the same time, which wasn’t a realistic goal. So she decided to start with traditional Chinese medicine at the Chi Institute. She began attending in her third year of vet school, and upon receiving her diploma, Danielle will be certified in both traditional Chinese veterinary medicine and acupuncture. She is also a certified veterinary spinal manipulation therapist.

What’s Next for Danielle

I asked Danielle whether she’ll practice with large or small animals, or both, and she answered it will be both. And she’s had opportunity to practice a little bit during her schooling. She did several externships (experiential learning opportunities) during her fourth year, and is grateful to the open-minded professors who allowed her to do some of them in the areas of chiropractic and acupuncture.

I asked Danielle if she has run into professors who were apprehensive or concerned about her interest in alternative therapies. She replied that she’s had some skeptics along the way, but as soon as she’s able to explain what she wants to do and why, they become open-minded enough to let her try.

After Danielle graduates she’ll do an internship at North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine in Raleigh. Half the internship will be a small animal rotation and half will be nutrition. After that, Danielle plans to do a residency in nutrition and receive further training in integrative medicine. Which means she has about four more years of school ahead of her!

I want to thank Danielle for talking with us today. I know she has a bright and really wonderful future ahead of her in veterinary medicine. Hopefully we can stay in touch and perhaps do an update interview to see where her advanced training takes her.

Interview #3: Veterinary Student Joanne Lin

My third guest today is veterinary student Joanne Lin, who is in her third year at the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. Joanne was born and raised in San Francisco. Her parents emigrated from Taiwan.

Interestingly, Joanne says she didn’t grow up with pets. Her mom had a Cocker Spaniel as a child and when the dog died, she was so devastated that she wanted to protect her own children from that kind of sadness. Joanne appreciated her mother’s protective instinct, but on the other hand, she feels she missed out on some great childhood memories and experiences.

Joanne and her sister played with stuffed animals as children. They came up with an imaginary “Animal Land” and made up characters that have stayed with them to this day. She feels Animal Land was probably her inspiration for wanting to care for animals in real life.

Joanne’s Incredibly Diverse Background and Circuitous Route to Veterinary School

I asked Joanne at what point in her schooling she became interested in helping animals. She answered that it was actually a social justice course that got her thinking about medicine and the disparity between people who have access and people who don’t. She wondered how she could help her fellow human beings and fellow living beings live healthily.

Joanne’s major as an undergrad was environmental systems modeling. “I have to say I took a very circuitous route to veterinary medicine,” she says. As an undergrad, she explored a lot of options for her future. She was a cellist growing up, and after undergrad, she stepped away from the sciences and went to The Juilliard School, where she earned a masters degree as a performing cellist. She spent the next 10 years in New York working as a freelance musician.

And it was in New York that she had her first pet. She was walking through a park, and a cat came up to her and wanted to go home, so she took him home with her. He’s been with her five years now.

While in New York working as a musician, Joanne realized that even though she loved what she was doing, there was more she wanted to do. She yearned for something “hands-on” that connected her directly with people. A wonderful friend of hers, Carol, was her inspiration. Unfortunately, Carol is very ill and stays home a lot, but what makes her come alive are her animals. Through her illness and the illnesses of her cats and her bunny, Joanne has had the opportunity not only to help Carol, but also to learn about the power of love.

Carol was also instrumental in showing Joanne, through the care of her animals, about things like homeopathy, essential oils, and Chinese herbal medicines. Through her friendship with Carol, Joanne came to appreciate the more holistic approach that integrative medicine allows.

Joanne’s Vet School Experience and Her Plans for the Future

Unfortunately, once Joanne was in vet school, alternative therapies like those she’d been exposed to through Carol weren’t a part of the curriculum. Vet schools are adamant about teaching “evidence-based medicine,” which is fine because vet students need to learn to practice good medicine. But the only alternative modality even discussed at UC Davis is acupuncture, and Joanne believes even it is somewhat marginalized. And there aren’t actually classes in acupuncture or any of the alternative healing modalities. It’s up to the students to seek out the information for themselves.

Fortunately, there are other resources in the Davis area, like an excellent equine surgeon who attended the Chi Institute, and another veterinarian who treats small animals and exotics.

I asked Joanne if she has any classmates who are also interested in learning skills outside the traditional curriculum. She said most definitely there are. The school has a student-run club, the Holistic Veterinary Medicine Club, whose mission is simply to expose the student body and faculty to different alternative modalities. They try to pick their speakers carefully for maximum impact – without scaring anyone off!

Two years ago, the club was small – maybe three officers and a handful of students. Last year Joanne joined the group, became an officer, and was able to increase membership to around 80. They held a one-day symposium and had over a hundred people in attendance, which was really exciting!

I asked Joanne what her plans are after graduation. She answered that first she wants to solidify her training and become comfortable with Western medicine. She also hopes to attend the Chi Institute. She wants to add acupuncture and herbal medicines to her arsenal of therapies she can offer her patients, and she hopes to intern with various practices in the area.

Joanne says she feels lucky to be in California where many practitioners have started to embrace the integrative medicine approach. She plans to seek out those people and hopefully build relationships that will allow her to learn from their experience.

Joanne plans to work in small animal private practice after she graduates. Her long-term goal, however, is actually to have a hospice – sort of a rescue sanctuary for animals. She envisions having people come into the hospice to help with the animals, especially children and older folks. She believes hands-on experience in nurturing animals is very helpful in teaching responsibility and respect for life, especially for kids. Joanne also feels older people in our society are marginalized, and inviting them to work at the hospice would be her way of recognizing their contributions and giving them an opportunity to help animals, children, and each other.

I think that’s a wonderful idea, and I’m very excited for Joanne’s future. I want to thank her for sharing her story with us and I look forward to watching her evolve in her veterinary career.

Interview #4: New Vet Dr. Rhiannon Fenton

My fourth guest is Dr. Rhiannon Fenton, a recent graduate of Western University who has decided to pursue a career that includes integrative medicine. Rhiannon is an equine veterinarian.

First, I asked Rhiannon to talk a little about her background and why she decided to become a vet. She replied that she was born and raised an only child in Southern California. Her family had a German Shepherd named Magnum, who Rhiannon considered sort of a brother. Whenever Magnum was feeling under the weather, Rhiannon “doctored” him. She says it was very natural for her to want to heal her pet, and when she couldn’t make him better, she felt helpless. Realizing her innate desire to heal animals came easily and early to Rhiannon. She knew as a child she wanted to become a veterinarian one day.

Rhiannon began riding horses at about four or five years of age. She felt an immediate connection with them. She began exercising her neighbors’ horses for free when she was in the eighth grade. She also practiced Tellington TTouch on them. So at just 12 or 13 years old, she was gravitating toward natural healing therapies. And when she witnessed the animals respond to it, it reinforced for her that, “Okay, this is the path I want to go on with.” She knew she had a special connection with horses, and that she could heal them using natural methods. She didn’t have to pump antibiotics, steroids or other drugs into them to help them feel well. Rhiannon also felt a psychic connection with horses. She was able to communicate with them.

Rhiannon Began Building Her Practice and Client List Before Graduation

Rhiannon attended Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo for her undergraduate studies, and then went to Western University for veterinary studies. She picked Western because the school is non-traditional. It focuses on problem-based learning and lots of hands-on training. Rhiannon wanted to acquire real-life experience during vet school rather than pursuing the usual curriculum and not really getting her feet wet until after graduation.

Western was also close to her home and family. She had two horses with her during both her undergrad studies and vet school. She was able to collaborate with people in the area, find stable arrangements for her horses, and have a great local support system while enduring the rigors of vet school.

Rhiannon is the first Western University graduate I’ve talked to, so I asked her if her school was more receptive to alternative methods of healing than more traditional vet schools. She answered that while in school, she chose not to discuss her ability to intuitively communicate with horses. “You can’t tell everybody you can hear the animals, because they’ll think you’re crazy,” she said. She remembers that there were professors at Western who were open to at least talking about acupuncture, chiropractic, herbs and so forth, but it was never the primary focus. The primary focus was traditional veterinary medicine.

While still at Western, Rhiannon enrolled in a five-month program for animal chiropractic. She also began building her business and website based on what she knew she wanted to do after graduating. She also trained horses and worked with horses that a lot of people wouldn’t touch because they were too dangerous. Rhiannon has the ability to connect with them using natural horsemanship concepts. So toward the end of her vet school education, she was already building a client list and implementing alternative training methods. It all came together for her.

Rhiannon Graduated Vet School Already in Charge of a Growing Holistic Equine Veterinary Practice

Rhiannon has also received certification in spinal manipulation as well as chiropractic. At the time of our interview she was taking acupuncture training for both large and small animals.

She also trained in Reiki during her first year of vet school. Her aunt is a certified aromatherapist, and she helps Rhiannon apply aromatherapy in her practice as well. She even creates special blends for Rhiannon to use with her equine patients.

Rhiannon also does bodywork based on her knowledge of where horses get sore. She did a lot of research – watched videos, and read books from leading experts in the field who have set a precedent for how to heal animals using bodywork.

Rhiannon’s practice is called Vital Equine Holistic Veterinary Medicine and Professional Horse Training. Her services include all those we’ve discussed – chiropractic, bodywork (which includes massage therapy, and stretch and release exercises), Reiki, and aromatherapy. The first thing she does when she arrives to examine a horse is provide the animal with a peace and calming essential oil to get things off to a good start with each patient. She also offers homeopathy, herbal remedies, and intuitive healings.

Rhiannon’s patients are primarily problem horses, though she does do chiropractic and bodywork on some performance horses. But her training is usually with horses that everyone else has given up on.

I asked Rhiannon if she feels incredibly fulfilled in her career so far, and she says she absolutely does. She’s certainly off to a great start and is at a really exciting point in her career. Rhiannon is a great example of someone who entered vet school knowing she wanted to be an open-minded healer. She received her foundational training at Western University, and then began adding alternative healing tools to her patient toolkit.

I want to thank Rhiannon for chatting with us today. I can’t wait to see how her practice unfolds in the coming years!

Interview #5: Dr. Carrie Donahue

My fifth and final interview today is with Dr. Carrie Donahue, who has an integrative veterinary practice in Madison, Wisconsin, which is where we’re chatting today. And this is a really neat place! It’s beautiful, but very quaint. It’s energetically warm and balanced. I asked Carrie how it came to be.

She said it has always been her dream to have her own veterinary practice – to set it up the way she wanted to, and to practice veterinary medicine the way she wants to and the way that best serves her patients.

Carrie has been a DVM for three years, so I asked her if practicing integrative medicine was on her mind when she first graduated from vet school. She answered, “Yes, definitely.” And in fact, even before she went to vet school her dream was to be a holistic veterinarian. Once she was in vet school, she became immersed in her conventional medicine coursework for four years, and it wasn’t until she graduated that she began to seek out alternative therapies and programs. She received her certification in acupuncture after graduation.

Carrie’s Very Special Acupuncture Niche

Carrie has actually developed a kind of specialty acupuncture niche for older animals and those at the end of their lives. I asked her to talk a little about that.

She said that as soon as she began practicing acupuncture, most of the patients she saw were geriatric animals nearing the end of their lives. Her treatment of these patients just naturally evolved into using acupuncture as part of a hospice program. Eventually, Carrie began performing at-home euthanasia as a way to continue that level of care for her patients.

I think it’s a wonderful gift Carrie is offering her patients and their families. Euthanasia is both the hardest and one of the most important jobs veterinarians do, because it relieves suffering. It’s the final gift we can offer a patient – to help the body to return to a state of pure positive energy.

Carrie transitioned from doing house calls to having her own space about six months prior to our interview. She’s a solo practitioner, so I asked her to describe a typical day. Carrie explained that she also still does house calls, so a typical day usually involves several in-clinic appointments and at least one house call. Every day is different, and she never really knows when she gets up in the morning how the day might go.

Many days she’ll get calls for at-home euthanasia in the middle of the day and she adds that into her schedule. She also typically has at-home acupuncture house calls planned. And then she sees patients at her clinic for wellness checkups, bloodwork and that sort of thing. So every day tends to be different, and Carrie really enjoys the variety.

In addition to acupuncture, Carrie is also working with essential oils and herbs, which she researched on her own and learned about from other integrative vets. She’s also thinking about adding chiropractic and perhaps homeopathy to her toolkit.

Carrie’s practice has grown almost entirely through referrals. She does very little advertising, especially recently.

Carrie’s Acupuncture Demonstration

I’d like to thank Carrie for welcoming me into her practice today and spending time talking with us.

The rest of this segment features Carrie performing acupuncture on Loki, one of her senior canine patients.

Loki has some anxiety issues that Carrie feels she can help relieve, as well as do some overall calming with the acupuncture needles. Loki’s mom, Heather, also explained that he’s having some arthritis symptoms, including stiffness, in his hips.

The first acupuncture needle Carrie inserts is right on the top of Loki’s head. In Chinese medicine this is called the permission point, and it always comes first. It’s like an opening to the entire process, and is sort of asking the animal for permission to do the procedure. It’s also a very calming point that triggers a release of endorphins.

The next needle goes into the center midline between Loki’s hips. This is another permission point, and it gets the energy flowing between the two points.

Next, Carrie feels down Loki’s back looking for any spots that are generating heat and she locates additional acupuncture points. The needles are placed along energy pathways called meridians that travel around the body. Placing needles along the meridians removes blockages to the flow of energy and promotes healing.

One of the main meridians is called the bladder meridian, which runs all the way from the back foot, up the leg, up the back, all the way to the eyes. The bladder meridian has association points for all the organ systems in the body.

Next, Carrie will place needles around the hip joints on both sides of Loki’s body. These needles will promote blood flow to the area and relieve inflammation. Another acupuncture point that’s excellent for the hind legs is located right behind the knee.

As Carrie places the needles, she can see that Loki is calming down. One of the most frequent questions she gets is, “Do the animals feel the needles going in,” or “What do they feel when they’re getting the acupuncture?” There may be a mild reaction to the placement of a needle into a very sensitive spot. Sometimes the skin will twitch a bit. But often there’s no reaction at all and patients don’t seem to feel the needles.

Once all the needles are placed, often patients will become more relaxed from the improved energy flow in the body. They may yawn, or their nose will start to drip, or their eyes will grow heavy and they’ll get very sleepy. Those are all signs that the needles are doing their work.

Carrie normally starts with a series of three to four acupuncture treatments, spaced about one to two weeks apart. Typically, there is improvement right away following an acupuncture treatment. Sometimes, however, especially with chronic issues like arthritis that have been developing for awhile, it can take a few treatments before results are seen. That’s why Carrie likes to space them out to start with and see how things go from treatment to treatment. Eventually she can do treatments less frequently, like once every two or three weeks. Many animals get to a point where they only need a treatment once every six months just to keep things balanced and healthy.

Carrie wants to do one more acupuncture point to treat Loki’s anxiety. There’s a point right behind the ears called An Shen, which translates to “calming the shen.” In Chinese medicine, the Shen is the mind. This is one of the best points on the body to address anxiety issues.

As Carrie explains, you can even do acupressure at home on this spot. She also uses it for animals who are coming out of anesthesia after surgery, as it can assist the recovery process.

Loki will sit with his needles in and relax with his mom for about 20 minutes. And that’s an acupuncture treatment!

October 21, 2013 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Related Education, Holistic Pet Health, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Pet Friendship and Love, Pet Health, Pets | 1 Comment

Adopting Military Dogs

American Thinker: Those that were chosen to defend America, upon retirement, need a family to love. The military has a great adoption program for their military dogs. American Thinker had the privilege to interview Shane Larsen, who is the military working dog adoptions coordinator. He is a former Air Force staff sergeant who was an instructor and trainer at the Lackland Canine School as well as a former handler.

The adoption program originated in November 2000 as a result of the “Robby Law,” preventing the euthanization of four-legged warriors. Robby, a Belgian Malinois dog was euthanized even though his handler made every effort to adopt him. Although this law did not save Robby, it specifies that the military dog can and should be adopted. Those first in line are any of the former handlers, next in line are law enforcement agencies, and finally qualified families.

The dogs up for adoption are either those that did not pass the rigorous certification process to become a military working dog, a training dog that no longer could perform, or those that have been in combat with some medical issues. A family gets dog that has been spayed or neutered, while only having to incur a cost of the collar, leash, and transportation fees. Anyone adopting must go to the base where the dog is stationed and pick them up in person after going through a face-to-face interview with Larsen and the dog. Larsen noted, “Those dogs that do not meet the standards is due to behavioral and environmental issues, where they are unable to handle their job. However, before a dog is put up for adoption many different people evaluate them. If they are put up for adoption, I consider it an honor that I am the one responsible to find a home. You have to be a dog lover to work in this field.”

Ninety to ninety-five percent of the former handlers adopt their partner. The home base handles the adoption with Lackland being the middleman who signs off on the paperwork. The kennel master at the home base is the one to notify the previous handlers that the dog is in the adoption program. It is not hard to find the handler since, according to Larsen, “There is a list of every handler who ever worked with the dog so they can be tracked down.”

The average age for those retired is about 9 years, while the average age for those who do not make it through the training program is 16 to 18 months. Since most law enforcement agencies will not take a dog over the age of four there are a lot of older adult dogs available. Lackland Air Force Base in Texas has the largest volume of dogs, in the hundreds. But, if someone does not want to travel there, they can try adopting from a base near them since “where ever there are dogs there will be adoptions.”

How does the process work if someone is interested? The DOD has come a long way since the “Robby Law.” There is a lot of scrutiny that goes into someone being selected. A person must fill out a detailed application by hand or electronically. Since there are 500 to 600 applicants the wait period is an average of 12 to 18 months. One of the first questions is, “what is the ideal dog you are looking for?” In this case, the more specific someone is about age, sex, or breed the longer they may have to wait.

Through a rigorous screening process Larsen makes sure that people understand about the breed they are adopting. Since the wait period is long he uses it to his advantage by re-asking the questions during a face-to-face or phone interview and comparing that to the answers given on the application.

He told American Thinker that an important consideration is a person’s housing situation. “If they want a younger dog and live in an apartment what is their exercise program? Living on an upper floor of an apartment with only stairs is also not suitable for an older dog. Also, we usually will not adopt a dog out to anyone with children eight years or younger. Sometimes I will go through 20 to 25 applications to find the right person for a particular dog. We are very, very picky as to who will get a dog. A lot of people do not qualify.”

From time to time there are those adopters who realize they made a bad decision, but unfortunately once the adoption is finalized the dog is their responsibility and they must find the dog a new home. Thankfully, because of the scrutiny and the detailed explanations of what is expected “this usually does not happen. We make sure a very detailed medical history is given out as well as making the adopter aware of a particular condition, the commands the dog knows, and what are the preferred toys. In fact, the feedback I get from the adopters is that once you have a military working dog it is hard to get any other type of dog. There is no comparison regarding the passion, the bond, and the attachment these dogs show, which is why repeaters are willing to wait months.”

A military dog should be adopted because it is an act of kindness, although it may be on the part of the dog. Anyone who has adopted a military dog or plans on doing it will be able to pay back these four-legged warriors with the luxury of a loving home. Larsen said it best, “Those adopting will get a lifelong companion that has served their country and will form a bond like something they never had before.”

By Elise Cooper, who writes book reviews, author interviews, and has written a number of national security, political, and foreign policy articles for American Thinker.

October 20, 2013 Posted by | Adopt Just One More Pet, animal behavior, Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Rights And Awareness, animals, Dogs, Fostering and Rescue, Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, NO KILL NATION, Pet Adoption, Pet and Animal Training, Pet Friendship and Love, Pets, Service and Military Animals, Stop Euthenization, Success Stories, Working and Military Dogs and Related | 2 Comments

Severely beaten dog found in Columbus is dead

When atrocities happen or have continued to happen (like this one) for years, whether it is against women, children, the elderly, or animals, they reflect on all of us and on us as a culture and a society.  And for those cold hearted souls out there that actually think an animal is property for their owner to treat and abuse as they wish, the realization is that animal abusers are often child, spousal, and elder abusers and bullies in general as well, who often get their start as animal abusers as a first step and then graduate to those crimes if they are not stopped!!  Get-involved!!  We are all God’s creatures and it is each of our responsibilities to stand-up for those weaker than we are or in all abusive situations.

The Examiner:  The pit bull found in Columbus with injuries to his head has passed away.

Injured pit bull is dead

Capital Area Humane Society, who had taken in and was caring for the young dog, announced the news Thursday on Facebook:

“Hearts are heavy as we share the sad news that the male pit bull that was injured in a case of animal abuse last week has died. His condition was such that we could not ensure his quality of life, and we made the compassionate decision to euthanize him."

Capital Area Humane staff and volunteers did all they could to save him. But the male dog found in the Tamarack Circle neighborhood had severe injuries to his head and brain, thought to be caused by multiple blows to the head.

The Humane Society of the United States is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for beating the Columbus, Ohio pit bull.

Anyone with any information on the dog is asked to contact the Capital Area Humane Society at (614) 777-7387 ext. 250.

"Everybody blamed Somebody when Nobody did what Anybody could have done."-The moral of the story…Just do it!" #HelpSaveAnAnimal


Domestic and Animal Abuse 

The S.A.A.V. Program – Sheltering Animals of Abuse Victims Program 

Pet Abuse Registry Started in NY by Suffolk County SPCA… An Idea That is Waaaay Overdue and Needed Everywhere, So Let’s Do It!!

Father Arrested for Allegedly Killing Family Dog in Front of Children

October 19, 2013 Posted by | animal abuse, Animal or Pet Related Stories, Dogs, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pets, Political Change, Stop Animal Cruelty, Toughen Animal Abuse Laws and Sentences, We Are All God's Creatures | 4 Comments

Some October Mid Month Doggie Daycare Fun [video]

Video:  Some October Mid Month Doggie Daycare Fun

October 19, 2013 Posted by | Adopt Just One More Pet, Animal and Pet Photos, animal behavior, Dogs, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pet Friendship and Love, pet fun, Pets | 1 Comment