The American Kennel Club is doing a much better job of protecting bad breeders than it is protecting dogs.
That’s the gist of this investigative report that aired yesterday on NBC’s “Today” show
The accusations aren’t exactly new, and weren’t exactly uncovered by NBC, but it’s good to see the issue getting some national attention.
The AKC, investigative correspondent Jeff Rossen notes, calls itself ”the dog’s champion …
“But critics say there’s an ugly reality you don’t see: Some AKC breeders raising diseased dogs, malnourished, living in their own filth. It’s so disturbing that now two of the country’s largest animal welfare groups, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and the Humane Society, are condemning the AKC.”
The report included an interview with one dog owner, who purchased a Great Dane from a kennel only weeks after that kennel was inspected by the AKC and found in compliance. The puppy turned out to have intestinal parasites, an upper respiratory infection and a congenital eye defect.
“Law enforcement went into the kennel just two months later, and rescued dozens of dogs,” Rossen reported.
Wayne Pacelle, CEO of the Humane Society of the United States, is featured heavily in the report, and makes the point that the AKC should be working with animal welfare groups to protect dogs instead of protecting bad breeders and fighting laws that would crack down on them.
AKC Director of Communications Lisa Peterson, also interviewed for the report, says she would give the AKC an “A” for its inspection program.
But when the reporter asked how many breeders are producing AKC-registered dogs, she said, “That’s a great question. We don’t know.” And when asked what percentage of AKC registered breeders end up getting inspected, she wouldn’t offer a ball park figure.
“We do thousands of inspections annually,” Peterson said. “We’ve done 55,000 inspections since the year 2000.”
“But what percentage of breeders actually get inspected?”
“… I don’t have that figure,” Peterson said. “I’m sorry.”
Peterson said there are nine AKC inspectors in the U.S. Asked “Do you think that’s an adequate number?” she said, ”That’s the number that we have.”
Posted by jwoestendiek May 2nd, 2013 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: akc, american kennel club, animals, aspca, breeders, breeding, club, conditions, dog, dogs, hsus, humane society, humane society of the united states, inspections, investigative, jeff rossen, kennel, laws, legislation, nbc, news, pets, report, today, today show, wayne pacelle
In another month, he’ll be trying to bring home some gold, but it was back in November that Michael Phelps went to New York for a “Today Show” appearance and came back to Baltimore with a dog.
The olympic swimmer was there to talk about his training regimen — and it was the same day the show was presenting another segment in its Bow To Wow series, in which shelter dogs get makeovers.
Now renamed Stella, the dog is doing fine, Debbie Phelps, Michael’s mother, reports, and she’s getting along well with Michael’s other dog, a bulldog named Herman.
Michael’s mom told MSNBC that Michael plans to teach Stella to swim soon — maybe once the Olympics are out of the way.
(Photos: Top, MSNBC; close-up by by Lisa Dixon)
Posted by jwoestendiek June 29th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopted, adopts, animals, appearance, baltimore, bow to wow, bulldog, catahoula, dog, dogs, from bow to wow, gold, herman, london, makeovers, medals, michael phelps, mix, nbc, new york, olympics, penelope, pets, shelter, stella, swimmer, swimming, today show
(UPDATE: Ruth Torres, after reclaiming her dog, surrendered him to the shelter, saying he was too difficult to handle)
A Bronx woman who didn’t even know her dog was lost found him — on an NBC “Today” show segment featuring homeless pets that have been given makeovers and put up for adoption.
“It was a miracle,” said Ruth Torres, whose brother took her Irish Wolfhound — under circumstances not entirely clear — three weeks ago.
Torres, according to MSNBC, didn’t realize Dusty was actually lost until she saw the “Today” show Friday morning.
On the program Jill Rappaport and Center for Animal Care and Control official Richard Gentles were introducing an Irish Wolfhound in the recurring “Bow to Wow” segment.
“They said, ‘Here comes Mooki,’” said Torres. “I said, ‘That’s not Mooki! It’s Dusty!’ I said, ‘Oh my God, Mommy, hurry, hurry! Dusty’s on TV.’”
Torres and her mother went to the Animal Care and Control Center in East Harlem to claim Dusty.
Shelter workers told Torres that Dusty had been found abandoned at a dog run in the Bronx.
According to MSNBC, Torres believes her brother, who she said has been through some tough times, left Dusty in the park and never called to tell her. When found, Dusty wasn’t wearing a name tag and didn’t have a microchip.
He returned to his old owner Saturday, after the shelter microchipped and licensed him. Torres had to pay for that, but not the makeover.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 24th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: abandoned, animal care and control, bow to wow, bronx, dog, dog park, dusty, found, irish wolfhound, jill rappaport, lost, makeovers, missing, mooki, nbc, recognized, ruth torres, segment, television, today, today show, video
I wasn’t personally tuned in, but it seems Pup, the accordion-playing pooch vying to win the NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” competition, failed to make much of an impression last night.
Maybe he was overwhelmed by the bright lights, the big stage and the huge Hollywood crowd, but Pup only tugged a couple of times on the elastic strap attached to the accordion, and once it snapped out of his mouth, he stayed away from the accordion altogether.
After Pup balked, the act turned into a solo – basically his owner, Ed, singing and strumming “Ghost Riders in the Sky.”
Pup failed to live up to the expectations of the judges, and his owner, Ed, from Oakhurst, California — and anyone else who saw his impressive audition tape (above).
“If Pup had continued we may have had a sensation on our hands, but we’re never going to know,” said judge Piers Morgan, who “X-ed” the act early on.
“We had some problems,” Ed explained afterward.
Pup’s on air performance — a bit painful to watch — is included in the video below.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 11th, 2010 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: accordion, acts, america's got talent, animals, competition, dog, dogs, ed, music, musical, nbc, performances, pets, piers morgan, playing, pup, reality, talent, television, tv, video
When Conan O’Brien left NBC Friday night, he may have been $32.5 million richer. But he had to leave his dog behind.
Triumph the Insult Comic Dog, like all the other characters showcased during O’Brien’s tenure, will remain the property of those at his former network.
Msnbc.com has put together a nice retrospective on the not very nice dog — featuring some of Triumph’s best known assaults on popular culture and the pompous, including this one from a visit to a Beverly Hills doggie spa.
The plastic pup (pet), created by comedy writer Robert Smigel, debuted on “Late Night with Conan O’Brien” in 1997 and continued with the puppet’s “Tonight Show” appearances.
Posted by jwoestendiek January 26th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: beverly hills, characters, comedy, conan, conan o'brien, dog spa, insult comic dog, los angeles, nbc, robert smigel, television, tonight show, triumph, tv, video
Willow’s owner claims her dog can read — only three phrases, but still.
What do you think? Is the dog actually reading the words? Or is something else at play?
Posted by jwoestendiek October 10th, 2009 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, cards, commands, dog, dogs, learning, nbc, pets, read, reading, reads, skills, today show, tricks, video, willow, words
How do you get a 120-pound mastiff out of the bottom of a narrow 30-foot well?
You crawl down it — even knowing the dog’s name is “Kujo” — harness him up with rope, and get everybody to help pull.
In Suitland, Md. last Friday, Prince George’s County firefighter Travis Lambert was lowered into the well to rescue Daniel Ellis’ dog. The two men, and Kujo, appeared on the Today Show Tuesday.
Apparently Kujo had climbed under the deck to seek shelter from the rain and fell through a piece of rotting plywood covering a defunct well. Police were called. They determined it was a job for the fire department, who in turn called on the department’s rescue team.
Rescuers set up a pulley system to haul the dog out of the well. Lambert said he was in the well for about 15 minutes and that Kujo was cooperative.
A little more than four hours after falling down the hole, Kujo was brought back to ground level amid cheers from rescue crew and onlookers. Kujo, the Today Show reported, didn’t go to his owner first — instead he climbed on Lambert and gave him a big lick.
Posted by jwoestendiek September 3rd, 2009 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, daniel ellis, dog, dogs, fire department, kujo, maryland, mastiff, nbc, pets, police, prince georges, rescue, rescued, save, suitland, today, today show, travis lambert, video, well
“America’s Got Talent” is the grammatically incorrect name of an NBC television program in which three people who, as far as I know, have never displayed any of their own, judge whether other humans have talent.
This season, though, another species somehow sneaked in, or is it snuck?
A dog named Rory, whose Frisbee skills are indeed stunning, is one of five contestants who have made it to the semi-finals. Rory beat out singer and piano player Charles DeWayne for the final position.
Before the final vote judge Piers Morgan — a former tabloid editor who serves as the token British snot on the panel — said if the dog was chosen over DeWayne, it would be “the biggest scandal” in the history of the show.
Judges David Hasselhoff and Sharon Osbourne, however, called Rory’s performance “brilliant.”
Posted by jwoestendiek August 16th, 2009 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: america's got talent, david hasselhoff, disc, dog, flying, frisbee, judges, nbc, piers morgan, rockin rory, rocking rory, rory, sharon osbourne, talent, television, tv, video
In case you missed it on the Today show this week, here’s a look at their “Big Dog Makeovers.”
Today went to Animal Care and Control of New York City to find four candidates — all more in need of a loving home than an actual makeover.
While the makeovers aren’t that impressive, they do at least allow homeless dogs to get some air time, and find homes. (All the dogs featured in the segment up to now have been adopted.)
This week, they tackled Sonya, a flat-haired retriever mix, Phoebe, an Australian cattle dog , Marcus, a German shepherd, and Jack, a Jack Russell they decided deserved to be i the mix because of his big personality.
Next Monday, as if dogs and makeovers weren’t enough, the Today Show will be throwing a third element into the mix: the ambush.
On Monday, July 6th TODAY will be “ambushing” three lucky dogs on Rockefeller Plaza with a doggie makeover, according to the Today Show blog.
“If you are in the New York area and think that your pup needs some pizzazz, stop by the plaza and your dog may get a new ‘do. Experts will be roaming the crowd starting at 6:45 a.m., so be there early to get a good spot!”
Posted by jwoestendiek July 2nd, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: ambush, animal care and control, big dogs, dog, dog makeovers, doggie, makeover, nbc, new york city, pets, rockefeller plaza, today show
As part of its continuing “Making a Difference” series, NBC Nightly News recently featured the Circle L Ranch — an Arizona sanctuary for dogs, cats, horses and other farm animals that, though we’ve yet to pay it a visit, I have a hunch we someday will.
That’s because the woman behind it, Phoenix physician Deborah Wilson, happens to be married to one of my many former bosses — a member, in fact, of that extremely small and highly exclusive group, “Bosses I liked.”
Dr. Wilson, who’s the wife of Steve Wilson, communications director for Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard, says the Circle L, like most sanctuaries and shelters, has seen unprecedented numbers of animals coming in due to the faltering economy, foreclosures and layoffs. “It’s just one sad, heartbreaking story after another,” she told NBC’s Maria Menounos.
The Circle L Ranch, on 37 acres in the Prescott Valley, was established as a sanctuary in 2006 and is now home to 70 horses and an assortment of cows, goats, sheep, not to mention cats and dogs.
Dr. Wilson, its founder, is an animal rights advocate who has been active in the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, the Humane Society of the United States, Farm Sanctuary, and PETA. She’s on the Board of Directors of Audubon Arizona and Liberty Wildlife.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 9th, 2009 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: "making a difference", animal, animals, arizona, cats, circle l ranch, cows, deborah wilson, dogs, goats, horses, humane, maria menounos, nbc, news, nightly, phoenix, prescott, rescue, sanctuary, shelter, unwanted, video