According to her obituary, published in Saturday’s Connecticut Post, Norma Brewer’s dog contributed to her death — chewing off her boots and socks, leading her to succumb from hypothermia.
According to the obituary, this occurred while Brewer, who was 83 and in a wheelchair, was attempting to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest peak.
“There is suspicion that Mrs. Brewer died from hypothermia, after Mia ate Mrs. Brewer’s warm winter boots and socks,” read the death notice, which had been submitted to the newspaper by a funeral home.
Brewer, the death notice read, never realized her life goal of reaching the summit of the 19,341-foot mountain.
But, it said, she had made it to the base camp, where she died in the company of her daughter, her cats and dog “Mia.”
If all this is sounding a little too unbelievable to be true, that may be because it isn’t — not entirely.
While Norma did die, the obituary was a joke — one final prank (or was it?) from a woman known in life as quite a prankster.
She wrote it before she died, and left instructions for her children to get it published in the local newspaper — the same local newspaper where her father was once president and publisher.
Good one, Norma.
“It was just typical mom,” Donna Brewer, Norma’s daughter, said Saturday. “She always had stories, many of which were not true, but thought were funny.”
“People who don’t know my mother are bemused,” she added. ”People who know my mother are laughing and saying, `Yeah, that’s Norma.’ ”
Donna Brewer said her mother died from a stroke and had been wheelchair-bound for more than a year.
The Post corrected the record in a news story Saturday.
Norma, as her obituary accurately noted, was the daughter of W. Raymond Flicker, former president and publisher of the Bridgeport Post, Telegram and Sunday Post (now known as the Connecticut Post). Donna Brewer said her mother often recalled watching newspapers come off the printing press in Bridgeport with her father.
Norma’s son, Raymond Brewer, said his mother’s prank “had more to do with the way she viewed the world. While life is serious, it shouldn’t be taken all that serious.”
He said her children went along with her last wish. ”It was her way of having one last joke with the world,” he said.
Funeral services for Norma Brewer were held yesterday in Fairfield.
(Photo: Connecticut Post)
Posted by John Woestendiek February 2nd, 2015 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, ate, boots, connecticut post, death, death notice, dog, dogs, hoax, hypothermia, mia, mount kilimanjaro, norma brewer, obit, obituary, pets, prank, prankster, socks
Unable to find any food, Marco Lavoie, 44, killed his dog with a rock and ate him, according to the Canadian news agency QMI.
According to news reports, the first words the hiker uttered, after being found close to death by rescuers last week, were: “I want to get a new dog.”
Lavoie — after a bear destroyed his canoe and food supply — was stranded for three months in the wilderness about 500 miles outside Montreal. After the bear attack, he sprained his ankle and was unable to hunt or find any other source of food, according to reports.
Lavoie, an experienced hiker who often spent weeks in the wilderness by himself, was rescued by helicopter on Wednesday. He’d lost 90 pounds and was suffering from hypothermia. He was listed in critical condition in a hospital in Northern Quebec.
Survival expert Andre Francois Bourbeau told the Toronto Sun that Lavoie’s decision to eat his dog was a good one.
“He survived because he made good decisions. Eating his dog was one of them,” said Borbeau, the author of a survival guide. “You have to be desperate, but there’s no shame in (eating the dog),” said Bourbeau. “Hunger squeezes you so much that you would accept food that’s not normally possible,” said Bourbeau. “You can crave slugs and bugs.”
I’m sure there are many others who hold that view, and who’d point out that man – by virtue of that “dominion” he has over other animals, by virtue of being the superior, more developed being, by virtue of his position atop civilized society – has every right to chow down on his dog when trapped in the wilderness with no other options available.
But we don’t find much virtue at all in his actions.
We see more humanity in the dog, who loyally went along on his master’s silly wilderness trip, scared off a bear to protect him, and — despite any hunger pangs he might have been experiencing, despite his master’s hobbled condition – didn’t make a meal of Lavoie.
Posted by John Woestendiek November 5th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, ate, bear, behavior, being, canada, dog, dogs, dominion, eating, eats, german shepherd, hiker, hiking, human, humanity, humans, man, man eats dog, man eats his dog, marco lavoie, nature, outdoorsmen, pets, saved, starvation, stranded, superior, survival, wilderness
A University of Maine graduate student says he has found a bone fragment from what he believes is the earliest domesticated dog ever found in the Americas — one that walked the continent 9,400 years ago.
And where he found it — ensconced in a dried-out sample of human waste — gives proof that eating dog was part of America’s culture, at least before America was America.
Graduate student Samuel Belknap III came across the fragment while analyzing a sample of human waste unearthed in the 1970s. Carbon-dating placed the age of the bone at 9,400 years, and a DNA analysis confirmed it came from a dog — as opposed to a wolf, coyote or fox.
The Associated Press reports that the fragment — which was the dark orange color characteristic of bone that has passed through the digestive track — was found in Hinds Cave in southwest Texas.
The fragment provides the earliest evidence that dogs were eaten by humans in North America, and may have been bred as a food source, he said.
Belknap was studying the diet and nutrition of the people in the Lower Pecos region of Texas between 1,000 and 10,000 years ago when he came across the bone.
Belknap and other researchers from the University of Maine and the University of Oklahoma’s molecular anthropology laboratories, where the DNA analysis was done, have written a paper on their findings, scheduled for publication in the American Journal of Physical Anthropology later this year.
The fragment is about six-tenths of an inch long and three- to four-tenths of an inch wide. Belknap said he and a fellow student identified the bone as a fragment from where the skull connects with the spine. He said it came from a dog that probably resembled the small short-haired dogs that were common among the Indians of the Great Plains.
Other archaeological findings have found evidence of domestic dogs in the U.S. as long as 8,000 years ago.
A 1980s study reported dog bones found at Danger Cave, Utah, were between 9,000 and 10,000 years old, but those dates were based on an analysis of the surrounding rock laters as opposed to carbon dating. In Idaho, researchers believed they’d found 11,000-year-old dog bones, but later tests showed them to be no more than 3,000 years old.
Worldwide, studies have found evidence of dogs going back 31,000 years from a site in Belgium, 26,000 years in the Czech Republic and 15,000 years in Siberia.
The earliest dogs in North America are believed to have come with the early settlers across the Bering land bridge from Asia.
Belknap said eating dogs was once common in Central America, and that some Great Plain Indian tribes ate dogs when food was scarce or for celebrations.
”It was definitely an accepted practice among many populations,” he said.
Posted by John Woestendiek January 19th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: america, analysis, anthropology, archaeology, ate, bone, carbon dating, diet, digested, dna, dog, domesticated, earliest, eaten, evidence, excrement, first, fragment, hinds cave, human, indians, nutrition, oldest, research, samuel belknap, study, texas, university of maine, waste
The sprucing up of Petite Acres — the trailer park in Arizona where I’ve temporarily hung my hat — continues.
In addition to paving the dirt road that leads into the trailer park, to keep the dust down, the owner hired one of my neighbors, Ramiro, to come over and remove a tree stump from my yard.
As Ramiro brought over his tools — an axe, a pick and multiple shovels — Ace followed him back and forth to his trailer, and, as he has before, got a hand out.
“I was feeding him some tamale and he ate the whole husk,” Ramiro said. “I hope it doesn’t make him sick.”
Clearly, Ace didn’t understand the intricacies of Mexican cuisine; then again, his policy when it comes to any food is generally to eat it first and ask questions later.
Six hours later, about the time the tree finally came down, the tamale came up. Ace walked to the trailer door and started hacking, and got down the stairs just in time to cough up a corn husk.
I’m not sure why the stump had to be removed. It takes up much more of my dirt yard now that it’s horizontal instead of vertical, but I’m sure someone will be chopping it up and hauling it away, and filling the giant hole in the ground.
But, being a temporary resident, my vote didn’t count.
Ramiro probably didn’t care either way about the stump in my yard, but once he tackled the task, it became a battle he had to win — and all done without the aid of heavy equipment. It was man versus stump.
Ramiro proudly took a picture of the tree he’d singlehandedly brought down. I took a picture of what Ace coughed up. Then, at Ramiro’s request, I took some pictures with his cell phone camera of him standing atop the fallen tree truck, raising his arms in victory.
All in all, as they go, it was a pretty exciting day at Petite Acres.
Posted by John Woestendiek December 21st, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: america, animals, arizona, ate, cave creek, corn husk, dog, dog's country, dogs, dogscountry, eating, neighbor, petite acres, pets, ramiro, road trip, stump, tamales, trailer park, travel, travels with ace, tree, vomit
Veterinary Pet Insurance Co. (VPI), the nation’s oldest and largest provider of pet health insurance, chose 12 nominees for the honor – all selected from claims filed by clients. More than 3,000 people voted online to pick the winner.
Ellie lives in Santee, California, and the beehive was just the latest in a long line of items she has consumed in her young life – from wooden toy train tracks to laptop computer keys.
On top of the hive, and its thousands of inhabitants, Ellie also consumed pesticide – for the hive had recently been sprayed. On the plus side, that meant the bees she consumed were already dead. On the down side, the pesticide made her upset stomach even worse. She made a full recovery.
Ellie’s owners, Robert and Sandra Coe, will receive a bronze trophy in the shape of a ham as well as a gift basket full of doggie toys and treats, VPI announced this week.
The VPI Hambone Award is named in honor of a VPI-insured dog that got stuck in a refrigerator and ate an entire Thanksgiving ham before someone opened the door and found the dog inside, with a mild case of hypothermia.
This year’s second place honors went to Aubie, a border collie from Birmingham, Alabama, who wanted to meet (or eat) the mailman so badly he leapt through a closed living room window. The leap shattered the glass and left Aubie with a cut front leg that required 40 stitches.
“Aubie’s never been enamored with the mailman,” said owner, Sharman Martin.
Third place went to a West Highland white terrier named Darci, who attacked her owner’s running chainsaw. The chainsaw cut two small holes into Darci’s muzzle and she underwent five hours of surgery.
Additional nominees for the 2010 VPI Hambone Award included a boxer that chased and caught a moving delivery van by biting into one of its tires, a standard poodle with a taste for dirty diapers, and a Jack Russell terrier that suffered injuries from wrestling with a lizard.
All pets considered for the award made full recoveries and received insurance reimbursements for their medical care.
(Photo: Courtesy of VPI)
Posted by John Woestendiek August 24th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: accidents, animals, ate, aubie, award, beaten, beehive, bees, border collie, california, claims, darci, dogs, eaten, ellie, finalist, ham, hambone, hambone award, health, hive, insurance, labrador, labrador retriever, nominees, pet, pets, retriever, robert coe, safety, sandra coe, santee, trophy, unusual, veterinary, veterinary pet insurance, vpi, west highland terrier
Winston, the dog that chewed the bumper off a police car in Chattanooga, got his day in court yesterday, and the judge ruled he could go home.
The boxer-pit bull mix had been confined for two weeks after attacking a parked and occupied police car.
He was reunited with his family, the Emerlings, at McKamey Animal Shelter yesterday.
The court stipulated that Winston will attend two different obedience courses, and won’t be allowed to run loose. While he now carries the classification of “potentially dangerous,” that could be dropped if there are no other problems for 6 months.
“I know this attack was not on a person,” city judge Shery Paty said, “but I don’t want … the remote possibility of that happening.”
Posted by John Woestendiek March 26th, 2010 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, ate, attacked, boxer, bumper, car, chattanooga, chewed, court, dog, dogs, freed, mix, mutt, news, ohmidog!, patrol car, pets, pit bull, police, police car, released, squad car, winston
Some new details have emerged, and some old ones have proven incorrect, in the case of the dog that tried to eat the police car in Chattanooga.
First off, the dog is a pit bull-boxer mix, not a bulldog, as he was described in most initial reports.
The three-year-old, 80-pound dog, named Winston, managed to break through a locked fence Sunday at Mann’s Welding, approached a parked police car in which an officer was on the lookout for speeders, and chewed off its front bumper. He also bit through two tires and left teeth marks in the side panel of the vehicle.
The officer got out of the car when he noticed it was shaking, and tried to subdue the dog, first with pepper spray, then with a stun gun. When a second officer arrived Winston chewed the tires of the other patrol car. Eventually the dog was captured by animal control officers, with the help of one of his owners, WDEF reported
“Obviously at some point yesterday he was not a nice dog,” said his owner, Michael Emerling, “but previous to that he was very sweet.” Emerling said Winston has never hurt anyone, though he does occasionally show aggression toward lawn equipment.
The dog is being held at the McKamey Animal Center, where Karen Walsh, executive director, noted: “Some dogs are very aggressive. Especially when they feel they are being protective. So I think the officer to the dog’s perception was in his territory and so the dog just attacked the car.”
Still, after this incident Emerling, his owner, says he can’t risk what could happen if Winston attacks again. He’s considering having him put down. “We can’t take the chance that the next time something sets him off it won’t be a car … we just can’t take that risk.”
(Click here for an even more updated version of this story, and video of the attack.)
Posted by John Woestendiek March 17th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: ate, bite, boxer, car, chattanooga, chew, damaged, eat, karen walsh, mann's welding, michael emerling, mix, mutt, news, officer, patrol car, pepper spray, pit bull, police, police car, squad car, stun gun, taser, winston