Kos, rescued from an RSPCA shelter 18 months ago, is trained to detect drugs, currency and firearms.
On his first day on the job, with the Avon and Somerset Police, Kos found a lump of heroin in a car.
The 2-1/2-half-year-old dog was being cared for at the RSPCA’s West Hatch Animal Rescue Centre near Taunton before he was taken on by police, according to SWNS.com
“What is nice for ourselves and the RSPCA is Staffordshire Terriers get such a bad name but this dog is so lovely with people and other dogs,” said his handler, Lee Webb, with whom Kos lives. “There are other dogs out there that have potential we could use and it is a shame that people do not give them a chance sometimes.”
Webb says Kos seems as pleased with the arrangement as police are: “Kos was very excitable on his first day on the job – he absolutely loves it.”
Posted by jwoestendiek October 23rd, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, avon, breeds, britain, currency, department, dog, dogs, drugs, firearms, heroin, K-9, k9, kos, law enforcement, pets, pit bulls, police, rescue, rspca, shelter, somerset, staffordshire, staffordshire bull terrier, stereotypes, stigma, terrier, trained, uk
That’s about three times the average weight of a Labrador — and enough that it required four people using towels as slings to lift him when he arrived at the RSPCA’s Leybourne Animal Centre in Kent.
The 12-year-old dog was surrendered to the RSPCA by an elderly owner who kept forgetting he had already fed his pet, according to the Daily Mail.
(I am pretty sure I did that with Ace yesterday, giving him dinner twice.)
Alfie struggled to walk more than a few steps when he arrived, and he couldn’t lift his legs the few inches needed to get into a slightly raised bed at the kennel. He’s now about halfway to his target weight, staff members say.
“He literally could not stand up when he arrived because he was so fat,” said Christine Dooley, center manager. “I have never seen a dog that fat before in my 27 years with the RSPCA … He was just a massive blob with a leg at each corner. He was being fed to death …”
“When he first came in he couldn’t go on walks because of his size, but each day as the weight is coming off he is able to take a few steps further. We have to be careful when staff take him for a walk because if he sits down and refuses to get back up we have to call in extra people to lift him up again.
“We want the weight to come off slowly to give his leg muscles a chance to build up strength and for his skin to shrink … He’s such a lovely dog and his tail never stops wagging. Everyone here has fallen in love with him.’
Once Alfie has reached a manageable weight, the center will put him up for adoption.
(Photo: Ferrari Press Agency, via Daily Mail)
Posted by jwoestendiek September 6th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adoption, alfie, animals, britain, canine, diet, dog, dogs, elderly, fat, fattest, feeding, forget, forgot, kent, labrador, loss, obese, obesity, overfed, owner, pets, retriever, rspca, surrender, surrendered, uk, weight, yellow lab
The World’s Ugliest Dog Contest is finally going to start living up to its name this year, with its first contestant from across the pond.
Mugly and his owner, Bev Nicholson, arrived from Britain on Monday, KGO in San Francisco reported.
The contest is this Friday and first prize is $1,000.
Mugly, an 8-year-old Chinese crested, is the first British entry in the World’s Ugliest Dog Contest, held every year at the Sonoma-Marin County Fair in Petaluma.
You can see and vote on the ugliest dogs contenders here.
Posted by jwoestendiek June 21st, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, bev nicholson, britain, california, chinese crested, competitors, contestants, dog, dogs, first, marin, mugly, petaluma, pets, sonoma, sonoma-marin county fair, ugliest, ugly, uk, video, world, world's ugliest dog, worlds ugliest dog contest
Not only did a dog act win the finals of “Britain’s Got Talent” Saturday night, the performance of Pudsey the dog and Ashleigh the human helped the show pull in double the audience of its competition,” The Voice.”
An average of 11.4 million saw Ashleigh Butler and Pudsey win in the live final of the ITV1 show, compared to 5.6 million for The Voice on BBC1, UK’s Press Association reported.
ITV1 said the ratings were the highest of any show this year.
Butler, a 17-year-old from Northamptonshire and her six-year-old dancing dog narrowly beat Jonathan Antoine and Charlotte Jaconelli to the title after receiving the most votes from the public.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 13th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, ashleigh butler, britain, britain's got talent, dancing, dog, dogs, pets, pudsey, ratings, television, the voice, video, viewers
A basset hound named George, while no one was home, became entangled in a telephone wire, started choking, and somehow managed to dial 999 (the UK’s version of 911).
Hearing his gasps, emergency operators sent police to the home in West Yorkshire, where he was freed.
We’ll point out this report appeared in The Sun, a troubled tabloid that not everyone considers the UK’s most reliable source of news.
And we’ll point out that when we said dialed, we meant dialed. It was one of those old dialy phones that George, in his desperation, somehow mastered.
(You can click on the link above to see some copyrighted photos of George, and the telephone. The basset in the photo above is Mac who lives in Texas and, despite his outfit, does not have super powers.)
The Sun reports that George, about two years old, knocked the phone to the floor and got entangled in the wire, managing to get it wound around his neck.
“And he panicked so much he incredibly managed to ring 999 as he pawed at the phone trying to free himself.
“The emergency operator alerted police who dashed to the empty home of driving instructor Steve Brown and his daughter Lydia, 18 on Saturday night.”
A neighbor, Paul Walker, also went into the home and “ripped the phone apart to wrench the wire from George’s throat.”
“Incredibly you could see where his paw print was on the phone to ring 999 — he literally saved his own life,” Paul is quoted as saying.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 29th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: 911, 999, alone, animals, basset hound, britain, choked, choking, dialed, dials, dog, dog dials phone, dogs, emergency, entangled, george, help, home, neighbor, news, news media, pets, phone, photos, safety, strangling, telephone, the sun, uk, west yorkshire, wire
Remember this video, from a story we told you about back in October? On his balcony in Lincolnshire, a British man was videotaped as he beat his dog. After the video was posted on Facebook, an angry mob formed outside his house.
The man survived the mob, and the dog survived the man.
The Staffordshire bull terrier was seized by authorities, and turned out to be blind and deaf, making the behavior of his owner, Jonathan Bloomfield, 37, all the more repugnant.
Bloomfield avoided a prison sentence, but magistrates in Grimsby banned him from having a dog for 15 years.
Whatever happened to the dog? A lot, and it’s all good.
Butch, as he was previously known, was taken in by the RSPCA, where he was renamed Dodger. The RSPCA, after realizing he was deaf and almost totally blind, contacted specialists at the Animal Health Trust in Newmarket to see if there was any chance that the 18-month-old dog’s sight could be restored.
“Dodger is the most adorable dog,” Claudia Hartley, the AHT’s head of small animal ophthalmology explained. “As soon as he arrived I fell in love with him and it wasn’t long before he’d work his charm on the rest of the vets and nurses here.”
Both his deafness and his blindness are believed to be congential. Dodger was apparently born with cataracts — something that, unlike his deafness, could be repaired. The AHT’s vets performed cataract surgery on Dodger’s right eye, with good results.
Dodger returned to the AHT last month to have his left-eye operated on and initial signs are very good, according to the East Anglian Daily Times.
The RSPCA has started the process of looking for a new home for Dodger.
“Although Dodger can now see, he is still completely deaf, and he’ll need a special owner who can understand his very specific needs,” said Kirstyn Gaunt, deputy manager at the RSPCA Block Fen Animal Centre, where he is now housed. “He has started to take on some basic sign language and he is a fast learner.”
Given the happy ending, we’ll end this post with a happier video:
Posted by jwoestendiek March 13th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: abused, adoptable, adoption, animal cruelty, animal health trust, animal welfare, animals, beaten, blind, britain, butch, cataracts, congenital, cruelty to animals, deaf, dodger, dog, dogs, england, eyesight, facebook, grimsby, jonathan bloomfield, lincolnshire, mob, pets, recovery, rescue, restored, rspca, shelter, sight, staffordshire bull terrier, surgery, uk, video
But that’s what’s ahead in the UK, where the Food Standards Agency has approved the sale of food from the offspring of cloned animals, including meat and milk.
The policy brings the UK more in line with the U.S., where we’ve also gone from wondering where’s the beef to what’s the beef.
The agency’s decision is in line with government policy in the UK, which supports clone farming and clone food without labels, even though research shows eight in ten shoppers oppose the cloning of farm livestock, the Daily Mail reported.
A little more than a decade into the 21st Century, the day has come when you can have a clone not just in your doghouse, but in your evening meal as well.
Both have come to pass — and operate virtually unregulated in the case of the former – despite polls showing the majority of the public is opposed to cloning, be it for purposes of creating pets or farm animals.
As related in “DOG, INC.: The Uncanny Inside Story of Cloning Man’s Best Friend,” pet cloning became a reality alongside the cloning of livestock — in fact, the first successful clonings of several species of farm animals came about in the pursuit to clone a dog.
After Snuppy, the first dog clone, was created in South Korea, dog cloning became a business, producing for customers copies of everything from Tibetan mastiffs to Labrador retrievers, from Pekingese to pit bulls, and loads of beagles destined for lives as laboratory dogs.
In the UK, defenders of the practice of cloning livestock argue that the offspring of clones are the same as farm animals produced through conventional breeding. They claim existing animal cruelty laws are sufficient to deal with any problems or concerns that arise. Both arguments have been made by pet cloning companies as well.
Accidentally oversized animals, while a concern to pet cloners, are not so much an issue on the agricultural side, where creating supersized animals is a goal, and would further boost profits.
The Daily Mail says supporters of the sale of food from clone offspring include Dairy UK, which represents the country’s biggest milk and cheese producers, the Food and Drink Federation, which speaks for manufacturers, and the British Meat Processors Association.
But, as in the U.S., some outlets — Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons, the Co-op, Marks & Spencer and Waitrose among them — have responded to customer concerns by pledging not to use meat or milk from clone offspring in their products.
The FSA, which had argued that meat and milk from the offspring of clones would have to be studied to ensure it was safe, now concludes that there is “currently no evidence” that food from cloned farm animals and their descendants poses a safety risk.
At least 100 clone offspring cattle are being reared on farms in the UK.
As for concerns about ethics and cruelty to animals, the FSA said that’s not its department. Instead, that falls under the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which has ruled in favor of cloning.
Richard Lloyd, executive director of consumer group Which?, described the FSA decision as “a disappointment for the eight in ten people who don’t want to eat cloned food.”
“It’s vital that the FSA and the Government respect people’s desire to know what they’re eating and control the use of cloning technology in food. As well as an approval process, we want to see a tracking system and clear labelling of these goods on the supermarket shelf.’
Emma Hockridge, head of policy at the Soil Association, which supports organic farming, animal welfare and consumer choice, also has a beef with cloning: “Not only are there insufficient long-term studies into the impacts on human health, cloning is cruel and damaging to animal welfare at all stages of the process,” she said.
In the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration has declared meat and milk from cloned animals safe to eat, admitted that it is probably already in our food supply and has taken no steps to require it to be labeled as such.
In other words, it’s entirely possible that– no matter what your stand is on the issue — you’ve dined on clone.
I’m not sure who knows best, the governments or the people. But sometimes I wonder if our beefed-up brave new world should be a little more chicken.
Posted by jwoestendiek June 3rd, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: agriculture, animal welfare, brave new world, britain, chicken, clone, cloned, clones, cloning, dog inc., dogs, farm animals, farming, fda, food, food and drug administration, food standards agency, fsa, government, health, labels, livestock, meat, milk, pets, policy, science, uk
Feminist Germaine Greer says the way to save Britain’s bluebells is to kill Britain’s dogs.
“If you love your bluebells, kill your dog,” the outspoken academic said at the Hay on Wye literary festival.
The phosphorous contained in dog feces is killing off a fungus, called mycorrhiza, necessary for the flowers to grow, said Greer, who owns a one-acre bluebell wood in Essex.
“…The real threat to our bluebells is not a foreign invader,” Greer is quoted as saying in the Daily Mail. “It is the use we make of the woodlands, people running through them, taking photos of each other standing on trampled bluebells.
“And, at the risk of making you all very cross, may I suggest it is also time that the British gave up on their endless love affair with the dog.”
Her comments came at the end of a panel discussion on defending “national treasures.”
A Kennel Club spokesman said: “I don’t think anyone would take Germaine Greer’s extreme and excessively anti-dog views seriously but we feel it would have been advisable that she used her platform to encourage dog owners to do the right thing and pick up after their dog to protect the countryside.”
Posted by jwoestendiek June 3rd, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: academic, bluebell, bluebells, britain, daily mail, dogs, feces, feminist, flowers, fungus, germaine greer, gungus, hay on wye, kennel club, literary festival, love affair with the dog, mycorrhiza, phosphorous, poop, shit, threatened, uk, waste, woodlands
Cats displaced dogs as the nation’s favorite pet – or favourite, if you live there – for the first time in 1994, according to the Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association (PFMA).
Now, a study by the association predicts dogs will be number one again, possibly as early as this year.
“Rovertaken,” read the headline in the Sun. “It’s raining more dog than cat,” said the Daily Mail.
The study says the number of dogs in Britain is at an all-time high having risen from 5 million in 1970 to 8.3 million today. Cats have fallen from a 2004 peak of 9.6 million to 8.6 million.
Figures from the Kennel Club reveal ‘handbag dog’ breeds have increased sixfold and the number of Chihuahuas have tripled since 2001.
While more households have dogs than cats — both in the U.S. and Britain — there are more cats overall in both countries, given the number of households where mutliple cats reside. As of 2007, census figures showed 82 million cats and 72 million dogs in the U.S.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 5th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, britain, cats, census, count, dogs, favorite, fish, great britain, number, pet, pet ownership, pets, population, study, top, u.s., uk
Dogs from New York City and around the world are being sent to help in the search and recovery effort in earthquake-ravaged Haiti.
The U.S. government is sending two, 72-man search and rescue teams with dogs to help dig out survivors, said Rajiv Shah, the administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development, Business Week reports.
French teams with “sniffer dogs” were seen boarding vans yesterday, headed to the airport on their way to Haiti. China dispatched a chartered plane containing multiple sniffer dogs and 10 tons of tents, food and medical equipment. A team from the Russian Ministry for Emergency Situations left Moscow, also bound for Haiti, Discovery News reports.
Elsewhere, dogs were departing from Peru, Taiwan, Mexico and Britain, where a 64-member team, including dogs and handlers was en route.
The National Disaster Search Dog Foundation has sent at least six dog-and-handler teams have been sent to Haiti.
“Our hearts go out to our neighbors in Haiti, and we’re honored to be able to help find survivors of this terrible tragedy,” NDSDF executive director Debra Tosch said. “This is the day that our teams have trained for; when the unthinkable happens, SDF Teams stand ready to respond, bringing hope and comfort to victims and their loved ones.”
Posted by jwoestendiek January 14th, 2010 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: britain, china, disaster, dogs, earthquake, effort, france, government, haiti, K-9, k9, mexico, moscow, national disaster search dog foundation, peru, relief, russia, search and rescue, taiwan, u.s., united states, video