How better to celebrate this extra day — thanks to 2012 being a leap year — than with the world’s greatest leaping dog?
Or at least this German shepherd, named Micky, was considered such back in 1930.
Needless to say, don’t try this at home.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 29th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: 2012, animals, dog, dogs, german, jump, jumping, jumping dog, leap, leap day, leap year, leaping, leaping dog, pets, shepherd, video, vintage
In her biography of the most famous German shepherd ever, “Rin Tin Tin: The Life and the Legend,” Orleans recounts how the dog — while rumored to have received the most votes — was snubbed by the Academy in 1929, the year the Oscars were first presented.
In an recent interview with Deadline.com, she suggested the mistake be corrected, and a posthumous Oscar be bestowed on Rin Tin Tin.
That, we note (parenthetically and cynically) wouldn’t hurt book sales. But more important, it would rectify an injustice, she maintains.
In the silent film era, which was then coming to an end, the German shepherd was a far more popular performer than the German actor, Emil Jannings, who won 1929′s best actor award.
“That first year that the Oscars were awarded, it seems to have been more a popularity contest than a serious assessment of performance,” Orlean said in the interview. “In terms of popularity, Rin Tin Tin didn’t have a peer, he was a huge star around the world and helped Warner Bros transition from its start as a small studio into a large one.”
The dog, reportedly rescued from a bombsite in eastern France at the end of World War I, was brought to California and made his screen debut in 1922′s The Man from Hell’s River. He appeared in numerous other films before dying in 1932, at the age of 13, only to see his character later reincarnated in TV series form.
The German actor, meanwhile, after receiving the award for his roles in two silent movies, returned to Germany and took part in making propaganda films for his friend Joseph Goebbels, a close associate of Adolf Hitler.
But it’s not just a matter of the dog being more American, or more popular, that leads Orlean to believe Rin Tin Tin would have been a better choice for 1929′s best actor award. She believes the dog had some acting chops.
“I think that training a dog to have a certain behavior is impressive and a credit to the dog’s intelligence and the mastery of training techniques. But if you look at what Rin Tin Tin did, he seemed to understand that he was performing,” she says in the interview.
“Look at Clash of the Wolves, as he limps away from his pack to die alone. You watch the scene and can’t believe he didn’t know he was acting in the movie. He is grimacing and limping, he falls to the ground in agony. How would you train a dog to look depressed and act as if he’s resigned to a lonely death? I don’t know how you do that. Somehow, the dog knows he’s supposed to look miserable and contemplating his mortality.”
Posted by jwoestendiek January 6th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: 1929, academy award, actor, animals, author, best actor, biography, book, books on dogs, canine, dog, dog books, dogs, emil jannings, films, german, german shepherd, germany, injustice, movies, oscar, pets, rin tin tin, snubbed, susan orlean
Cooling my heels in Phoenix, I’ve been trying to catch up with the latest on SB 1070, the new legislation that will turn Arizona’s police officers into immigration officials, requiring them to check the citizenship of anyone they confront in the course of their duties.
The law makes violating federal immigration laws a state crime, if that makes any sense, and some fear it will lead to large scale profiling and deportations as Arizona takes into its own hands matters it feels the federal government isn’t addressing.
Of course, the law applies to humans, and not dogs, but what if? What if the motivation for it — to keep undocumented foreigners from the shores of a country pretty much built by undocumented foreigners — was applied to the dog kingdom?
What if all the Irish setters –or at least those who lacked the proper paperwork — were sent back to Ireland; or if all the German shepherds were deported to Germany; or if Labrador retrievers, Tibetan Mastiffs, French poodles and Afghan hounds were all sent back to their place of origin?
The dog kingdom would be a much more boring place.
If all of them were required to live where they originated, we wouldn’t have anywhere near the magnificent diversity of dog breeds — not to mention hybrids and mutts — that we enjoy today. It would be so long, Welsh Corgi; seeya, Belgian Malinois; goodbye, Bo, and all other Portuguese water dogs.
Go back to Rhodesia, you Ridgebacks.
Probably, in our haste, we’d even deport Great Danes to Denmark, even though the breed didn’t originate there. (Once local law enforcement and state bureaucracies get involved, mistakes are bound to happen.) And, Siberian huskies, you don’t even want to think about where you’d be banished to.
A valid argument can be made that Siberian huskies shouldn’t be living in Arizona’s heat in the first place – but banishing them, or pestering them for their paperwork so often they decide to leave, obviously isn’t the solution.
If that were the case, I never would have met Sasha and Kodi, brother and sister huskies belonging to Sandy Fairall, who we hung out with yesterday at “Bark Place,” the dog park at Quail Run Park in Mesa.
No pedigree is required to enter, and dogs of all sizes, shapes, backgrounds and colors were playing together nicely. No one was asking anyone else to leave, no one was questioning anyone else’s pedigree, and everyone, dog and human, seemed happy to share the shady spots.
Sandy admits Phoenix is not an ideal locale for the cold weather dogs – something she’s reminded of whenever she heads to the mountains in winter to let them experience their more natural surroundings and play in the snow.
I say – paperwork or not — let them stay.
Posted by jwoestendiek June 23rd, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: 1070, afghan, aliens, arizona, bark place, border, breeds, citizenship, deport, deportation, diversity, documentation, dogs, foreigners, french, german, heat, hounds, huskies, husky, illegal, immigrants, immigration, law, legislation, mastiffs, mesa, phoeniz, police, poodles, portuguese, profiling, quail run park, sb 1070, shepherds, siberian, state, tibetan, undocumented, water dog
A former University of Georgia professor and his wife found dead along the highway Saturday morning were apparently killed by a pack of dogs, according to the state medical examiner.
Lothar Karl Schweder, 77, who had taught German at the university, and his wife, Sherry Schweder, 65, who worked at the university’s main library, were found on a road where they often walked their own dogs, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
The couple were found by visiting Jehovah’s Witness members.
After an autopsy Monday morning, Oglethorpe County Coroner James Mathews told the University of Georgia student newspaper, The Red & Black, that a dog attack was to blame.
“It was the results of a brutal dog attack,” Mathews said. “Without being graphic there were bites from head to toe… There are a lot of weird circumstances with this one. I’ve been coroner for 28 years, and this is one of the weirdest cases I’ve investigated.”
The state Bureau of Investigation responded to a call about the bodies around 10 a.m. Saturday morning.
Oglethorpe County animal control officials were out Monday looking for the dogs in the area, along Highway 77, near Highway 78.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 17th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: attack, autopsy, brutal, dogs, german, jehovan's witness, killed, language, library, lothar karl schweder, mauled, professor, schweder, sherry schweder, university of georgia, wild dogs
A World War II veteran who was held for a year in a Nazi prisoner camp has made it his mission to help supply wounded soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan with service dogs.
Irwin Stovroff, the subject of a recent Fox News report, has raised nearly $2 million dollars to help train and match up service canines with wounded combat vets.
The 85-year-old resident of Boca Raton, Fla., is also pushing lawmakers for federal funding to finance the program.
“It is a shame.” Stovroff says about the lack of an official federal program that pairs up battle-injured veterans with guide and therapy animals that can greatly improve their rehabilitation. “I wanted to do something about it.”
Stovroff, the recipient of a Distinguished Flying Cross, was shot down behind enemy German lines on his 35th bombing flight. He threw his dogs tags away before his plane crashed to hide his Jewish faith from his captors.
Stovroff says dogs can help the injured soldiers in a number of ways.
“The dog can become his eyes. He can become his legs. He can bring him anything he needs.” Stovroff said. “A dog is probably the best thing that can happen to these soldiers … They need a guide (but) they need the help and love of a dog as well.”
(Photos courtesy of Intimesofwar.us)
Posted by jwoestendiek July 29th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: afghanistan, assistance, breed specific legislation, camp, distinguished flying cross, dogs, federal, florida, german, hero, iran, irwin stovroff, nazi, prisoner, program, service dogs, soldiers, therapy, world war II, wounded