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Tag: gift

Kentucky is the most Scrooge-like in survey of what we spend on dogs for Christmas

xmasdog

Residents of New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania spend the most on their dogs at Christmas — and a good three times more than dog owners in Oklahoma and Kentucky, whose residents ranked as the most tight-fisted.

That’s according to a survey called the “Santa Dog Index” that appeared on TheNosePrint.com, an online pet source from Big Heart Pet Brands, the company that makes Milk-Bone and Pup-Peroni.

The survey polled 3,000 Americans about their dog-related holiday habits, including how much they spend on gifts for dogs, their reasoning for spending money on gifts for dogs and how they include their dogs in Christmas traditions.

xmasdog3The survey reported that 71% of people with dogs will give their pups gifts, and 48 percent hang up a stocking for them.

Nearly three-fourths of dog owners said they bestow gifts to their pet to express love. Other popular reasons were “because it’s fun for me” (60 percent) and “so the dog will feel included.”

Just under 30 percent dress their dog in a holiday-themed outfit, and 43 percent include the dog in their Christmas card photos.

The national average for Christmas spending on the dog is $23.10.

Here are the state by state rankings.

1. New Jersey: $30.01
2. New York: $29.55
3. Pennsylvania: $28.75
4. Utah: $27.75
5. Georgia: $27.04
6. California: $26.07
7. Washington: $25.81
8. Florida: $25.13
9. Illinois: $24.98
10. Virginia: $24.58
11. Texas: $24.47
12. Colorado: $24.11
13. Arkansas: $24.00
14. Maryland: $23.79
15. Mississippi: $23.31
16. Alabama: $23.05
17. Massachusetts: $22.91
18. Iowa: $22.86
19. Idaho: $22.83
20. Wyoming: $22.71
21. Ohio: $22.63
22. Wisconsin: $22.47
23. Rhode Island: $22.38
24. Alaska: $21.89
25. Hawaii: $21.75
26. Montana: $21.60
27. South Carolina: $21.53
28. New Hampshire: $21.50
29. Michigan: $21.33
30. West Virginia: $21.00
31. New Mexico: $20.40
32. Indiana: $20.14
33. Louisiana: $19.47
34. Kansas: $18.38
35. Missouri: $18.33
36. Tennessee: $18.19
37. Oregon: $18.07
38. Vermont: $17.67
39. Minnesota: $17.08
40. Arizona: $16.20
41. South Dakota: $15.35
42. North Dakota: $15.25
43. Nevada: $15.00
44. Connecticut: $14.30
45. Delaware: $14.14
46. North Carolina: $13.58
47. Nebraska: $12.00
48. Maine: $11.00
49. Oklahoma: $9.44
50. Kentucky: $8.63

(Photos: Lookanimals.com)

U.S. ambassador to South Korea receives outpouring of respect, love … and dog meat

lippert

It may not have been the most diplomatic of gifts,  but one of  Mark Lippert’s well-wishers had only good intentions when he delivered a package of dog meat for the hospitalized U.S. ambassador.

Lippert, who is recovering from an attack by a knife-wielding anti-U.S. activist, is a dog lover who regularly walks his basset hound, Grigsby, near his residence in Seoul.

The gift, delivered to Seoul’s Severance Hospital Friday morning by an elderly man, didn’t make it to Lippert’s room. Hospital rules prohibit any outside food being delivered to patients.

The gift giver said the package contained dog meat and seaweed soup, according to an official who didn’t want to be named because he wasn’t authorized to speak to the media, according to the Associated Press.

Some South Koreans believe dog meat promotes health, heals wounds and can help patients recover from surgery.

The Thursday attack left Lippert with deep gashes on his face and arm and damaged tendons and nerves. The hospital plans to remove the 80 stiches on Lippert’s face on Monday and Tuesday and release him on Wednesday.

The suspect in the attack, Kim Ki-jong, 55, could face charges including attempted murder, assaulting a foreign envoy, obstruction, and violating a controversial law that bans praise or assistance for North Korea.

(Photo: South Korean conservative activists hold portraits of Lippert during a rally for his quick recovery; by Ahn Young-Joon / Associated Press)

Almost-mailed puppy up for adoption

So many people have expressed interest in adopting “Guess,” the 5-month-old poodle-schnauzer mix who was almost air-mailed, that the city of Minneapolis plans to hold a drawing to help determine where he will call home.

The drawing will be held around 2 p.m. Friday at the Minneapolis Animal Care and Control shelter, according to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

Ten names will be initially drawn, and assigned a number. Those people will then fill out an application. After screening, the dog will be awarded to the first eligible  person whose name was drawn.

The new owner will be required pay the standard adoption fee, and for a pet license, and sign an agreement to have Guess neutered on “Spay Day” (Feb. 22) before taking him home.

On Jan. 25, Stacey Champion put Guess in a box sealed with packing tape and dropped the package off at a post office near her home, telling postal officials it contained a toy robot. The box was addressed to her 11-year-old son in Georgia, for whom Guess was intended as a birthday gift.

Postal workers opened the box after noticing it was moving and hearing the dog panting.

Champion, 39, has been charged with misdemeanor animal cruelty. She attended an administrative hearing in hopes of getting the dog back but was turned down. On Monday, when she failed to post a bond to pay for Guess’ shelter expenses, she lost any future chance to get the dog back, which would have been a possibility had she been found innocent.

That cleared the way for Guess to be officially put up for adoption.

“We’ve gotten calls from all over the globe,” Jeanette Wiedmeier of Minneapolis Animal Care and Control told Fox News. “311 has taken calls from Europe. They’ve taken emails from people who are outraged and excited about this story, and they want only the best for this dog. We’ve just been overwhelmed with the amount of attention this little six-pound guy has gotten so far.” 

(Photo by Elizabeth Flores / Star-Tribune)

Bo Obama’s value placed at $1,600

You can’t put a pricetag on the family dog, but in the case of Bo Obama it’s $1,600.

The value of Bo — a gift to the president from the late Sen. Ted Kennedy — was listed on annual financial disclosure forms the White House released Monday, according to the Associated Press.

Dollar-wise, the Portuguese water dog, was a mere drip compared to the president’s other income, including royalties from his books, “Dreams From My Father” and “Audacity of Hope,” which brought in between $1 million and $5 million each.

In addition to his $400,000 annual salary, Obama  listed a number investments which, including those held jointly with his wife, were worth between $2.2 million and $7.5 million in 2009. His Nobel Peace Prize carried a $1.4 million award, but the president donated that to charity.

(Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Princely gift of pricey pearls turns up in poop

A pair of expensive pearl earrings that Prince William gave to his girlfriend Kate Middleton on her 28th birthday have been recovered, slightly the worse for wear after going in one end of Middleton’s dog, Otto, and out the other.

The Daily Mail reports that Middleton suspected Otto, a black cocker spaniel, gobbled down the antique earrings. After monitoring his output for several days, her suspicions were confirmed.

Alas, Otto had chewed the jewelry so that, even after they reappeared, the earrings were unwearable.

The Mail reports that the earrings went missing from the ornamental dish on Middleton’s bedside table where she kept them.

“It seems that Otto had got into her room and eaten the pearl earrings. He was sitting on the end of her bed looking very pleased with himself and licking his paws,” the newspaper quotes an unidentified friend of the couple as saying.

When Kate told William she feared her dog had eaten the earrings, he burst out laughing, the friend said.

Kate monitored Otto closely, taking him for walks several times a day, and during one of them the earrings finally emerged — too chewed up to be rescued.

The prince has promised her another pair.

What I don’t want for Christmas

I’m going to poop on this party.

A dog collar that can open a beer bottle may be mildly funny the first time around, but I’d think the novelty would quickly wear off this novelty — even among frat boys.

On top of the whole dog-as-appliance indignity — among all the noble purposes dog serve, I wouldn’t rank opening your beer too high among them — I would think there could be safety concerns as well.

The Bark4beer website seems to say as much: “Please use with adult supervision as this product is not intended for children. Bark4Beer, L.L.C.. shall not be liable for any special or consequential damages that result from the use of, or the inability to use, the materials on this site …”

collar3attachedIf something’s not safe for children, I don’t want my dog wearing it.

The idea for the collar came at a pool party, where two young entrepreneurs were forced to use their dog’s collar to open a beer bottle’s non-twist-off top.

“After months of product testing, we are confident to release our revolutionary invention,” their website says. The inventors add, “Essentially, we can turn your favorite four-legged friend into the ultimate party animal ensuring that there is no shortage of tail at your next party.”

I’ll pass on this one, Santa.

SPCA supervisor in Texas convicted of cruelty

The former supervisor of a local SPCA in Texas was found guilty yesterday of allowing her 5-month-old German shepherd puppy to starve to death inside her Plano apartment.

Alicia Marie Martin, while qualifying for a two-year state prison sentence, received three years probation, a $500 fine and four days in the Collin County jail — the four days before Thanksgiving, the Dallas Morning News reported.

“I’m sending you there so that hopefully, when Thanksgiving rolls around each year, you will thank God that you are not incarcerated in jail somewhere,” State District Judge Mark J. Rusch said. “I’m not interested in crushing you … I am interested in your rehabilitation. I am interested in you knowing this was unacceptable behavior.”

As part of her sentence, she is forbidden to own a pet.

Martin, the former supervisor at the McKinney Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, was fired after her arrest in March.

According to prosecutors, Martin, 24 and a single mother, let the puppy starve to death inside her waterlogged apartment. She adopted the dog as a Christmas gift for her daughter, now 3, but the puppy became ill. She said couldn’t afford to take the dog to a veterinarian and was too embarrassed to take him to the local SPCA  where she worked for help.

When the electricity was cut off she temporarily moved to a hotel and left the dog at the apartment, returning once a day to let him out of his crate  and feed him. A veterinarian who testified, however, said the emaciated animal had no signs of food or fat in his system and was covered with open bedsores.