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Mini-Yorkie stomped to death protecting owner

Police are looking for several men who stomped to death a 4-pound mini-Yorkshire terrier that was trying to protect its owner from an attack in San Jose over the weekend, authorities said Monday.

The dog’s owner said he was walking the 6-year-old dog, Shadow, at Winchester Boulevard and Colonial Way about 2 p.m. Saturday when three men approached and asked if he was a gang member.

The owner, a 32-year-old floor installer who asked that his name be withheld for safety reasons, said he had denied gang involvement, but the men attacked him anyway.

The owner said he had tried to run with his dog but tripped, and the men began kicking and hitting him. He heard the small dog barking and trying to protect him.

The men beat him for about a minute. Once they ran off, the man said, he looked at his dog and "just saw a big puddle of blood."

The dog died on the way to a veterinary hospital, he said.

"He wasn’t making too many noises, but I could see his eyes and that’s when I broke down," he said. "They were still blinking a little bit, but so much blood was leaking out of him. I knew the moment he died in my arms. I heard him take his last breath and just kept thinking, ‘There’s no way this is happening.’ "

Capt. Jay Terrado of the San Jose Animal Care and Services agency said necropsy reports showed that Shadow died of head trauma and suffered injuries "consistent with being stomped and kicked."

"You can imagine the type of damage a full-grown adult can do to a small dog," Terrado said.

Witnesses told police that the men had been waving signs for a nearby car wash before the attack, Terrado said. The car wash was a fundraiser for the family of Ramon Ruano, a 20-year-old who was shot and killed Feb. 5.

Terrado said investigators were looking at all possible motives, not just a gang attack.

The owner said he had been wearing a red sweater and a red Boston Red Sox hat, which may have been a rival gang’s colors, but that he is not part of any gang.

"I’ve lived at my place for six years, and I’ve never had any problems," he said. "I’ve known that there were gangs around here, but come on – you see me walking a little mini-Yorkie down the street, you’re not going to think, ‘Oh hey, look at this guy.’ "

He took care of Shadow since he was a puppy, he said. He named him Shadow because the small dog followed him everywhere – "he was my shadow."

"He was so small," he said. "He was just a little baby dog. I can’t believe it."

Vivian Ho is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. vho@sfchronicle.com.

This article appeared on page C – 3 of the San Francisco Chronicle

In my book, there us no punishment harsh enough for these horrible men!

February 14, 2012 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pets, Political Change, Stop Animal Cruelty, We Are All God's Creatures | , , | Leave a comment

Banfield: 10 Dog Breeds Affected By Periodontal Disease

To coincide with February’s Pet Dental Month, new findings have been released which reveal the extent of dental problems in the dog population.

Top 10 Dog Breeds Affected By Periodontal Disease

Banfield’s Applied Research and Knowledge (BARK) team has released new findings to help Pet owners maintain and improve the health of their dogs’ teeth. Banfield’s BARK team conducts ongoing research in the field of veterinary medicine based upon the data from the nearly 115,000 office visits to Banfield hospitals every week. The findings show that periodontal disease is the most common disorder affecting cats and dogs worldwide, and informal estimates put it’s prevalence as high as 85%.

Classified by the degree of deviation from healthy teeth and gums, the severity of dental disease is labeled by six stages, which is also supported by BARK findings. These stages range from mild plaque and gingivitis, to gingival recession and degradation of the periodontal ligament, to significant inflammation and loss of teeth. According to their latest findings, certain breeds are more predisposed to periodontal disease than others. The 10 breeds most predisposed to periodontal disease are as follows:

  • Toy Poodle
  • Yorkshire Terrier
  • Maltese
  • Pomeranian
  • Shetland Sheepdog
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  • Papillion
  • Standard Poodle
  • Dachshund
  • Havanese

“All breeds need regular professional cleanings, but with regard to the top breeds at risk, professional dental cleanings and compliance with at-home care of the health of teeth and gums is especially crucial,” said Jeffrey Klausner, DVM, MS, DACVIM, senior vice president and chief medical officer for Banfield. “Although dental disease can occur rapidly at any age, risk factors for developing periodontal disease in dogs can include increasing age, small breed size and neutering. Periodontal disease has also been associated with changes in a pets’ kidneys, liver and cardiac functions – in short, unhealthy teeth can lead to an unhealthy pet in ways pet owners can’t imagine.”

Banfield recommend that proper at-home preventive dental care should include feeding your pet a firm, kibbled food specially formulated to reduce tartar accumulation, use of specially-formulated hygiene chews and dental specific water additives

Chihuahuas have a fair amount of dental issues as well.

Source: PetPeoplesPlace.com

Posted:  Just One More Pet

March 4, 2010 Posted by | animals, Just One More Pet, Pet Health, Pet Nutrition, Pets | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Doggie ‘doctors’ diagnose their owners’ ills

Canines’ keen sense of smell & intuition helps them detect people’s disease

Morgan, a Yorkshire terrier, jumped at owner Pamela Plante’s leg so incessantly that she that she finally inspected it in the mirror, and realized it was red up to her knee. She was diagnosed with an  infection that had spread throughout her body and she spent a week in the hospital.“After she jumped on my leg, she would sit and look at me and shake or shiver,” says the Smithfield, R.I., woman. (Photo by Pamela Plante)

“From past experience, I knew she would shake like that when she was in pain, so I picked her up and checked her all over trying to find out what was wrong and couldn’t find anything. When I put her down she would jump on my leg again.”

Finally, Plante inspected her leg in a mirror and discovered it was red up to the knee.

Plante called her doctor who told her to get checked immediately. She was diagnosed with sepsis and spent a week in the hospital recovering from the infection that started in her leg and spread through her body.

Sensitive dogs, such as Morgan, are proving that besides being man’s best friend, some canines also have a lifesaving sixth sense. Dogs’ keen ability to differentiate smells enables some of them to know we’re sick long before we might ourselves. Combine that with their 24/7 observation of us and some pets have proven to be skilled diagnosticians, even if we’re not always sure what they’re trying to tell us.

In the past few years, studies have shown that dogs can sniff out both early and late stage lung and breast cancers. The Pine Street Foundation, a non-profit cancer education and research organization, in San Anselmo, Calif., is even training dogs to recognize ovarian cancer.

Some dogs have also been shown capable of detecting skin cancer.

Riker, a 9-year-old Australian Shepherd who lives with Liz and Paul Palika in Oceanside, Calif., poked insistently at Liz’s father’s chest. “Dad, did you leave some of your dinner on your shirt?” Liz teased him. But Riker wouldn’t stop. To satisfy him, Liz and her mother took a closer look. There was a lump on her father’s chest. A trip to the doctor revealed a melanoma that had spread beneath the skin.

Other dogs have been taught to catch when diabetics’ blood sugar levels drop. And for about the past 20 years, “seizure dogs” have been used to alert their owners to a pending seizure and assist them to a safe place until it’s over.

Lifesaving cat
It’s not just dogs who have proven to have life-saving noses. Ardis Matson of Brookings, S.D., credits a gray tomcat named Tuffy with keeping her mother alive and able to live on her own for several years. “My mother was elderly and had insulin-dependent diabetes,” Matson says. “Often, her blood sugar would go dangerously low during the night and if left unchecked it could have caused her to go into a coma and die. Tuffy always slept with her, and when her blood sugar started slipping really low during the night, he would nudge her and walk across her body and keep aggravating her until she would get up and take glucose to make her blood sugar levels rise. When she was in control again, Tuffy would go back to sleep.”

And then there’s Oscar, a cat who lives at Steere House Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Providence, R.I. He alerts staff to the impending death of patients, a gift that allows families to be notified in time to say their good-byes.

The answer to how animals know something is wrong may be up in the air — literally. Dogs and cats have a keener sense of smell than humans, and that may enable them to detect subtle changes in body odor caused by such things as cancer cells or lowered blood sugar.

In the case of Oscar, for instance, veterinarian Margie Scherk, president of the American Association of Feline Practitioners, notes that he may be picking up a variety of clues that people are too busy to notice or don’t have the sensory capacity to detect.

“Cats live in a world of smells; their olfactory sense is a lot more acute than that of a human,” Scherk says. “People who are dying, as well as those who aren’t eating, emit ketotic odors, which might be one cue that cats like Oscar detect. There could easily be other odors that a dying individual produces that our noses are unable to note.”

In addition to being able to pick up certain odors, dogs and cats also seem to be able to recognize that it means there’s a problem their owners need to know about.

“There is reason to believe that some odors do have an ‘intrinsic’ value to the animal, that evolution has led to the development of neural pathways that specialize in detecting and processing relevant categories of smell,” says Timothy E. Holy, assistant professor of anatomy and neurobiology at Washington University in St. Louis. “Experience, too, plays a big role. You can train a dog to react in particular ways to relatively arbitrary smells.”

Those smells might include the breath of a person with lung cancer or the urine of a person with bladder cancer.

So the next time your dog or cat is nagging you, don’t ignore him. He might have something important to say. Just ask Joan Beck of Cottage Grove, Minn.

“One morning I woke up in the throes of a severe asthma attack. My husband was already awake and taking a shower. I was having so much trouble breathing that I couldn’t call for help. Our English springer spaniel, Sam, suddenly appeared, nosed me for a moment, then turned around and left the room. My husband said later that Sam pushed the bathroom door open and insisted that he follow Sam back to our bedroom. ‘Who needs Lassie when we have Sam?’ my husband says.”

By:  Kim Campbell Thornton is an award-winning author who has written many articles and more than a dozen books about dogs and cats. She belongs to the Dog Writers Association of America and is past president of the Cat Writers Association. She shares her home in California with three Cavalier King Charles spaniels and one African ringneck parakeet.

© 2008 MSNBC Interactive

August 29, 2008 Posted by | Animal Rights And Awareness, Just One More Pet, Pets, Success Stories | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment