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Archive for November 4th, 2008

More than 20 pets perish in Indiana store fire

More than 20 dogs and cats died Monday when fire swept through a pet store in Bloomington, Indiana.

Nine dogs and three cats survived the fire at Delilah’s pet store — most of which were rescued from the front of the building where they were on display.

Investigators were trying to determine the cause.

Karen Kidwell, the owner of the store, believes the fire started in the back of the building, WTHR-TV in Indianapolis reported.

“Probably electrical. It’s an old building,” said Kidwell. “I’m really glad none of my people were here because I would have really felt bad if they got hurt. The fire broke out just minutes before the store was set to open.

“I’ve been thinking about the animals that didn’t make it out. I had a personal dog that had been abused. It was a really sweet dog that didn’t get out of the fire and I just hate to see her go down that way.”

Kidwell isn’t sure if she’ll re-open.

Soup kitchen for dogs opens in Berlin

A soup kitchen for down on their luck dogs has opened its doors in Berlin.

Despite the looming financial crisis, Claudia Hollm, director of Animal Board, dismissed criticism that society might be better served by a soup kitchen for humans.

“Nowadays people underestimate dogs. They are incredibly important for those who lack social contact with other humans,” Hollm told Reuters. “Making sure dogs don’t go hungry is just as important as making sure that people don’t starve.”

The kitchen provides pets of the homeless and unemployed with a free meal, Hollm said.

Hollm relies on sponsorships from companies, including pet food manufacturers.

Words of wisdom from a 6-year-old

Harvey Mackay, a columnist for the Star-Tribune in Minneapolis-St. Paul, had a nice column yesterday on what humans could learn from their dogs, if they only tried.

It was prompted by an email about a 6-year-old boy whose family dog was put to sleep.

As the dog drifted away, Mackay wrote, the little boy seemed to accept the dog’s transition — even when the rest of the family was struggling with why animal lives are shorter than human lives.

“I know why,” the young son announced. “People are born so that they can learn how to live a good life — like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right? Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don’t have to stay as long.”

The family’s veterinarian, Mackay said, offered a list if other lessons dogs can teach — similar to others I have read, but worth repeating just the same:

•When loved ones come home, always run to greet them. Dogs treat us like celebrities when we come home. There’s nothing wrong with showing people we care.

•Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joy ride. On warm days, there’s nothing wrong with stopping to lie on your back on the grass.

•Take naps. If you can’t take a nap, at least take a break. It’ll improve your disposition.

•Run, romp and play daily. If you have a chance to have fun, go for it … Work hard and play hard.

•Let people touch you. Don’t be aloof. Allow people to get close to you.

•Avoid biting when a simple growl will do … It’s OK to warn people that you’re upset or even angry, but keep your temper in check.

•When you’re happy, dance around and wag your entire body. We have a right to be happy!