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Tag: control

More warnings required on flea, tick products

promerisAmid an increasing number of reports of deaths and seizures, the Environmental Protection Agency is requiring beefed up labeling for flea and tick products used on dogs and cats.

The EPA wants companies to make instructions on the products’ labels more clear so people don’t give their pets too much of the pesticides, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The announcement affects most flea and tick products that are applied directly to a pets’ skin.

The products include those made by Merck & Co., Bayer AG and Pfizer Inc. under the names Frontline Top Spot for Dogs, Promeris Canine Flea Control and Enforcer Flea Drops for Cats.frontline

The EPA said the number of reports of pets suffering from these products continues to rise. In 2008, the EPA received 44,000 reports of adverse events from these products, a 53% increase from the year before.

Steve Owens, assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Prevention, Pesticides and Toxic Substances, said the labels are to blame, not consumers. “I don’t know how you would blame the victim in this case when the label isn’t clear,” he said.

Owens said in some instances, people don’t realize they need to regulate the dose based on their pet’s weight. He said the EPA will require more precise dosing on the product labels.

Companies that don’t voluntarily update the labels will be forced to, Owens said.

Chihuahuas driving up shelter population

image001It’s not just Los Angeles, and not just California whose shelters are awash in Chihuahuas.

Phoenix is, too. Maricopa County Animal Care and Control shelters received 821 Chihuahuas in the last two months, according to the Associated Press.

 That’s 230 more than during the same period last year.

As of yesterday, there were 84 Chihuahuas awaiting adoption.

The shelter is offering a special deal this weekend with a Chihuahua adoption fee of only $36.

Microsoft makes good on dog’s Xbox damage

oscarOscar, the dog who purchased 5,000 Microsoft points while chewing on his owner’s Xbox 360 controller, has been given an official Microsoft membership, and his owner will receive a refund.

Microsoft, proving even a software giant has a soft side when it comes to dogs — or at least knows a good public relations opportunity when it sees one — will be refunding the points, setting Oscar up with his own gamertag and Xbox live subscription, and sending his owner Greg Strope a new controller and some extra points.

The move makes Oscar the service’s first canine member.

A Lab mix, Oscar went after the remote control while his owner slept, somehow managing to turn on the console and purchase 5,000 Microsoft Points for the account of Strope, who had stored his credit card number in the remote.

Strope became aware of the $62.50 transaction whn he received an email confirmation of the purchase from Microsoft.

Yesterday, in an email to ohmidog!, a spokesman for Microsoft said the company is refunding Strope his LIVE points “and providing extra for good measure.

“Plus he will get an extra controller and a LIVE subscription for his dog, Oscar.  We also created a gamertag for Oscar so that he doesn’t feel left out anymore.”

Like a cat to water

This little fella seems to love the feel of water splashing on his head — at least when he’s in control of it.

When you’re not in control of it, it’s an entirely different matter — torture even.

Take my house. (Please.) Recently a new leak developed. After a downpour, water pours in through a tiny slit in the ceiling, directly above the toilet. That’s very convenient — for I can just open the toilet lid and, except for some splashage, all the water goes right in.

It’s convenient up until the time one needs to use said toilet, in a sitting down manner. Then the options are: get very wet, hold a pot over your head (which is harder than it sounds), or postpone the bodily function until the weather clears up.

The landlord is on the case (it’s a complex roofing issue), but until a solution is reached, I’m faced with choosing between letting water that has collected who-knows-what on its trip across and through the roof pour on my head, holding a pot atop my head while on the pot, or gastrointestinal distress. 

To be clear, this is not a drip, but a steady flow, and both letting it land on your head, and trying to catch it in a pot, while in the highly vulnerable squatting position, are more demeaning than you might imagine.

So I went to Home Depot and bought a 10-foot length of plastic gutter, which, if I angle one end against the wall under the hole, allows me to direct the incoming flow into the bathtub.

My bathroom now has a water feature. And I’m back in control. How do I spell relief? V-I-A-D-U-C-T.

B-More Dog sponsors free workshop at BARCS

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B-More Dog is sponsoring a free hour-long workshop this weekend on dog-handling techniques and learning to read your dog’s body language.

It’s for humans only, and starts at noon on Sunday at BARCS (Baltimore Animal Rescue & Care Shelter) 301 Stockholm St. in Baltimore.

Burned mobile home housed up to 50 dogs

Officially, six dogs were killed in a mobile home fire near Mesa, Arizona at the end of March. But the owner of the property, neighbors and witnesses say two dozen or more dog carcasses could remain in the rubble.

Possibly as many as 50 dogs were living on the property; 26 dogs survived the fire.

The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office says its Animal Cruelty Enforcement unit will not be investigating and considers the case closed.

Deputy Lindsey Smith, sheriff’s spokeswoman, said animal crimes investigators went to the property and found nothing that fit the definition of animal cruelty. Smith said the investigators didn’t comb through the rubble, but found only six dogs that died in the fire.

According to neighbors who dug out the carcasses last week and delivered them to Maricopa County Animal Care and Control, some of the dead animals were in plain sight, but the majority of them were buried in a 10-foot by 12-foot area, under rubble from the burnt mobile home.

The owner of the burnt property, Jamie Endicott, provided the Mesa Tribune with a receipt from Maricopa County Animal Care and Control for 31 dogs that were eventually found.

Twenty-six dogs that lived at the residence were rescued, according to Kathy Swaney, who runs Valley of the Sun Dog Rescue.

The woman who lived on the property, Beth Schmeltz, said she didn’t know how many dogs she had, but she had provided shelter for them all since she began living there in 1996. Endicott was set to file the  paperwork to evict Schmeltz the day the property went up in flames.

On Wednesday, residents in the neighborhood held a memorial for the dead animals. About 50 people attended.

L.A. to halt low-cost spay-neuter program

Citing a budget shortfall, Los Angeles animal control officials say they will end a voucher program that enabled residents to get low cost spaying and neutering for their dogs.

The program started last year, when the city voted to require all Los Angeles dogs and cats be neutered or spayed, with the exception of show animals, law enforcement and service dogs, and those deemed too old or sick for the surgery.

L.A. Animal Services General Manager Ed Boks says the agency was compelled by the city to make up a budget shortfall of $414,000. Ending the spay and neuter vouchers will save about $150,000, he said.

Animal welfare advocates, and some city council members, are displeased with the decision to end the program, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Councilman Dennis Zine’s office said he “strongly opposes the recent decision made by the department to halt the voucher program” and will move later this week for the council to reinstate the program.