I’m a proponent of spending more time with your dog, and less with your computer, but here’s an interesting, and interactive, presentation from WNYC in New York, which has mapped out not just what breeds dominate the city’s neighborhoods, but what names as well.
Citywide, the top three female names for dogs are Bella, Princess and Lola; the top male names are Max, Rocky and Lucky and the top breeds are Yorkie, Shih Tzu and Maltese.
(Actually the most popular dog in New York is the mutt, and WYNC does report that elsewhere. Somehow they didn’t rate getting on the map, though.)
What’s the most fun though is scrolling through the boroughs to see where Lola tops Lucy, where Buddy beats Buster as the name of choice, and what breeds are, from neighborhood to neighborhood, most predominant. While Yorkies dominate most areas, there are enclaves where Labs and Chihuahuas and pit bulls are owned in the highest numbers. There’s a major English bulldog contingent in lower Manhattan, and pit bulls are the highest in number in Bed Stuy.
The list is based on information WNYC obtained from the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, which runs the city’s dog licensing program.
The feature has some other bells and whistles, too, including opportunities to play games and make a t-shirt.
Just after WNYC came out with its map, Gothamist put together an interactive map of its own – this back in January — claiming to show not where the dogs are, but where their poop is, or at least where it’s most complained about. The map shows what neighborhoods have the most barking dog complaints, too.
One wonders what would happen if those two interactive maps were to interact. Would that reveal large dogs named Brutus leave bigger droppings than Chihuahuas named Princess? That Sparky barks more than Snoozy?
Somewhere we have to draw line on all this interactivity with our computers — especially that share of it that’s presenting information that’s just everyday knowledge or common sense or entirely bogus.
In those cases, your time would be better spend interacting with the dog.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 23rd, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, barking, boroughs, breeds, bulldogs, chihuahua, complaints, dog, dog waste, dogs, gothamist, interactive, labrador retrievers, maltese, maps, names, neighborhoods, new york city, nyc, pets, pit bulls, poop, popular, popularity, shih-tzu, WNYC, yorkie
Yesterday we showed you some work from a real cartoonist.
Today, painful as it is, we’re showing you mine, retrieved from the garbage.
The year Ace and I spent on the road was about, among other things, opening up new vistas – for him and me. While he mostly dangled his head out the car window, I experimented with some new things, like dabbling in haiku, eating lobster roll, visiting a gentlemen’s club and, after a visit with an old cartoonist friend in Houston, drawing what was the second or third cartoon of my life.
I’ve long thought I would have been a great cartoonist, if only I could draw.
The only previous work I remember, and I can’t find it now, shows a team of movers packing up a home, one of whom comes down the stairs to the basement holding a very wrinkly-skinned dog by the scruff of its neck, at which point his exasperated supervisor tells him, in one of those voice bubbles, “No,! I said bring me a Sharpie.”
The cartoon above was created on the road (not while driving, but while at a rest area). Displeased with my artistic abilities, I wadded it up and threw on the floor of the back seat of my car, which served, and still does, as my trash bin. Those stains, I’ll venture, are mostly soy sauce and hamburger grease and Taco Bell beanage, left by wrappers and bags tossed in the same area.
Once the trip was over, and I gave the car a good cleaning, I came across it, unwadded it, and decided to keep it as a souvenir.
While it’s not likely to end up in The New Yorker, I may include it with the other charts, graphics and embarassing moments in the book about our travels. The book needs more dirty parts, and it’s definitely dirty, if not in its theme at least as a result of being buried under a year’s worth of fast food flotsam.
It relates to a topic I’ve talked about before — the belief (that I don’t buy, especially when it comes to dogs) that God gave man dominion over the animals, and how that’s often interpreted to mean they are here to serve us and we can do with them what we please.
Of course, “dominion” can mean a lot of things, but I like to think it means something other than shooting them, or fighting them, or eating them, or working them to death. I prefer viewing “dominion” as a responsibility to watch out over them — as I think they do us.
As for my cartoon, wherein the humor lies — if indeed some does — is in the contrast between the dominion we purportedly have and the poop bags we hold. We, millions of us, follow our dogs daily, rushing to pick up their solid waste.
Aliens observing this from afar, as I think Jerry Seinfeld once noted, would assume dogs were the masters and we were the servants.
Clearly it appears to run contrary to what God outlined for us when it comes to those creepy things creeping on earth, particularly dogs. Do we have “dominion” or are we merely “doo-minions,” scurrying to dutifully bag and dispose of the stinky feces our beloved dogs leave behind?
Whatever the case, and however large the pile, it’s a small price to pay.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 18th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: ace, animals, bible, cartoon, cartoonists, cartoons, dog, dogs, dominion, doo minion, drawing, feces, god, humor, pets, poop, shit, travels with ace, waste
Our answer is a qualified “yes” — but based on far different reasons than those being hammered away on by U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann and other Republicans.
The former presidential candidate from Minnesota said she thinks having a caretaker/dogwalker assigned to Bo is one example of lavish and excessive spending at the White House.
“We are also the ones who are paying for someone to walk the president’s dog — paying for someone to walk the president’s dog,” she said over the weekend (serving as her own echo).
Bachman, who has a beagle named Boomer, made the remarks at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference, held just outside Washington .
We, too, think the president should walk his dog — not as a money-saving measure, but because we think those peaceful moments of solace and reflection (assuming Bo is not a tugger) will make him a better president.
Walking the dog not only clears the head, it reminds one of what’s important in life. It’s good for the brain, it keeps the blood circulating, it lets you smell the roses and it calms the soul. I want a president with a calm soul, or at least as calm as the office permits.
While I think Obama and family should walk their own dog at every opportunity, I find nothing wrong with the White House having a full time dog walker on staff — even if, as some not 100 percent confirmed reports suggest, it”s a $100,000- a-year position.
(Also, I offer to fill that position should it ever become vacated — or even on a fill-in basis.)
As reported on the CNN blog, Political Ticker, Bachman, in her speech, blasted what she called “a lifestyle that is one of excess.”
“Now we find out that there are five chefs on Air Force One. There are two projectionists who operate the White House movie theater … They regularly sleep at the White House in order to be regularly available in case the first family wants a really, really late show. And I don’t mean to be petty here, but can’t they just push the play button?”
The Obamas, though always very well dressed, don’t strike me as lavish, and I don’t think Bo experiences the same amenities of, say, Queen Elizabeth’s corgis.
Our nation’s First Dog deserves, at least in some ways, royal treatment — even amid all the fiscal cliffs and sequesters that, dramatic as they are, were created by lavishly living (often) politicians out of touch with the real world.
Dogs help keep the word real. I want my president to keep it real. So I want my president to walk the dog whenever possible.
If it comes down to tending to a world crisis and taking Bo outside to pee, by all means, tend to the world crisis, and let the highly paid dogwalker handle the duty, as well as the doody.
(My far bigger questions about all this are whether the Obamas personally scoop Bo’s poop from the White House lawn, and whether Bachmann picks up Boomer’s droppings at her home, valued at $1.27 million, on the 18th hole of the Stoneridge Golf Course.)
Grabbing and bagging a handful of feces is how you keep it really, really real.
But back to our main point. Routine and mundane as the task might seem, there is much to be gained from time spent walking your own dog. (Just ask Leon Panetta.)
In trying times, when the head gets too clogged by all the stress, there is no better way to return it to a state of reason and clarity than the simple pleasure of walking the dog – whether you’re a queen, a president, an assembly line worker, or even unemployed.
(Photos: Bo and the president, official White House photo by Pete Souza; Michele and Marcus Bachmann, with Boomer, AP photo by Craig Lassig)
Posted by jwoestendiek March 18th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, barack, bo, bo obama, dog, dog walker, dog walking, dogs, first dog, first family, fiscal cliff, lavish, lifestyle, michele bachmann, obama, pets, politics, poop, president, republicans, scoop, sequester, spending, taxes, taxpayers, walking, white house, who walks bo
An apartment complex outside Dallas has become the latest to hire a company that conducts DNA tests on unscooped dog poop, with an eye toward fining, and possibly evicting, any owners who fail to clean up.
The management at NorthSide at Legacy, in Plano, informed tenants in a letter Friday that they will be required to bring their dogs in for cheek swabs in order to establish a DNA registry of all dogs at the complex, Fox News reported.
The testing is conducted by PooPrints, a Knoxville, Tenn.-based company that is marketing the service nationwide.
Once all the dogs are registered, any dog waste left on the property can be sent off to the PooPrints lab to be matched to the dog.
The fine for failing to clean up will be $250. Subsequent infractions or unpaid fines can result in rental agreements being terminated, the letter said.
“The goal of the program is to help maintain a clean and sanitary environment for all of our residents,” said David Marguiles, who represents Lincoln Properties, the company that owns and operates the apartments.
We’ve told you before about apartment complexes in New Hampshire, and Minnesota that have instituted the program, and how PooPrints has also tried to persuade the Dallas City Council to use its services city-wide.
A representative from PooPrints said they have hundreds of clients in 33 states.
Another Dallas apartment complex, The Ilume Cedar Springs, contracted with PooPrints last fall, with great success, according to management.
Residents there have been much more diligent about cleaning up after their animals, and only 12 – 15 samples of feces have been sent off to the lab for identification, according to the property manager.
Posted by jwoestendiek January 22nd, 2013 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, apartments, cleaning, dallas, dna, dna registry, dna testing, dog, dogs, feces, northside at legacy, not picked up, pets, pick-up, plano, poop, pooprints, properties, scoop, testing, unscooped, waste
Problem is, IT’S NOT.
Proving once again that words written in all caps should never be trusted.
As the New York Post reported yesterday, the signs, which show a human dutifully following his dog with a small shovel, are a bit off the mark.
Posted in at least a couple of locations, the signs not only have the maximum fine wrong, but the law they cite — Public Health Law 1316 — doesn’t exist.
The actual maximum fine for the offense is $250, and the law behind it is Public Health Law 1310.
Most signs in the city have it right, but apparently some rogue ones got fabricated and posted as well over the years, either due to poor research, or because the city wanted to scare the sheer bejeebers out of people.
The Post reported that “the city for years has posted signs in parks and promenades that threaten a $1,000 fine for dog-waste violations … Just one problem with the signs: They’re full of crap.”
When The Post asked city officials about one such posting on the Brooklyn Heights Promenade, they admitted that “1316” was a typo — and that the actual fine is $250. A spokeswoman said for the Parks Department said the promenade sign was taken down after The Post’s inquiry.
The spokeswoman said the sign “appears to be an older sign that is no longer fabricated and no longer installed in parks. We make every effort to replace these signs when applicable.”
That would make sense if the signs were ever accurate, but they weren’t.
The Post found at least one more sign still standing – at Washington Market Park in TriBeCa.
All of which makes us wonder: Is there a fine for putting up false warning signs?
(Photo: Helayne Seidman / New York Post)
Posted by jwoestendiek January 7th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: $1000, $250, 1310, 1316, animals, clean, dog, dogs, error, failure, feces, it's the law, law, maximum, new york city, new york post, one thousand dollars, parks, penalty, pets, poop, pooper, posted, public health law, scoop, scooper, shit, signs, typo, violations, warn, waste
A company we’ve told you about before, called PooPrints, made its case before the Dallas City Council this week, promising it could solve one of life’s great and ongoing mysteries — and it’s not who shot J.R.
It’s “Whose poop is this?” and, as company officials pointed out, tracking down and fining the owners of dogs who didn’t clean up could bring in millions in revenue for the city.
(Not to mention millions in revenue for the company.)
At least one Dallas City Council member expressed more than a passing interest in the company’s proposal to establish a citywide doggie DNA registry that would allow unscooped piles of poop to be traced to their source.
The company is already working with apartment and condo complexes around the country, but now it seems to have its sights set on signing up entire cities.
We, in case you can’t tell, hate this idea (and we pick up).
NBC5 in Dallas reports that, while some Dallas City Council members chuckled Wednesday when they heard about the idea, others thought it had merit.
“I think that’s a great idea,” Councilwoman Angela Hunt said. “I think we do need enforcement, especially in some of our denser areas where you have a lot of folks living with dogs and, if they’re not picking up. It creates a problem.”
PooPrints said cracking down, through DNA testing, could help clean up the environment. “This waste does run off into the Trinity River, and it does affect our ecosystem,” spokesman Chris Taylor said. “And we do want to keep our parks clean. We want to keep them healthy. This is a very easy way to do it.”
Company officials say residents could be required to pay for the $29.95 kits required to get a DNA sample. The city — while it would pay for the tests on the poop itself – $49.95 each — would more than recoup that expense through fining perpetrators.
The Ilume apartment complex on Cedar Springs Road in Dallas is already using the program on its property. Residents are required to record their pet’s DNA, and they’re fined $250 if waste on the property is tracked to that pet. A second offense leads to eviction.
“We’ve gone from picking up maybe an hour a day of poop, to picking up maybe one or two a month,” manager Joshuah Welch said.
Posted by jwoestendiek November 9th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: angela hunt, animals, city council, dallas, dna, dog, dogs, enforcement, environment, eviction, feces, fines, kits, penalties, pets, poo prints, poop, registry, revenue, scoop, shit, testing, unscooped, waste
Here’s another: Metro Paws LLC is offering biodegradable dog poop bags emblazoned with the candidate of your choice — Romney or Obama, whoever you like the least.
They’re calling the marketing drive ”Smear Campaign.”
Here’s how they described their thinking in an email to ohmidog!:
“Whether you’re a Democrat or Republican, we can all agree that politics these days are a big stinkin’ mess. Smear Campaign poop bags give you the chance to let out a little political frustration every time you pick up after your pup.”
Political Dog Poop Bags can be ordered here, and sell for $14.99 for a package of four rolls, or 80 bags.
Metro Paws LLC is a New York-based family business that described itself as being “dog owners first and entrepreneurs second.”
Smear Campaign, the company says, is the only political degradable poop bag on the market. Metro Paws teamed up with RS Kmiec Design to make the bags. “Our message is fun, whimsical, and yet calls for all Americans to vote,” the website says.
They’re available in some stores, including New York’s Who’s Your Doggy?, a pet store in Fort Greene that is keeping track of which bags sell the most.
“Whoever sells the most will lose the Presidential election,” predicted the store’s manager, Julia Rosenfeld.
As of Monday afternoon, Patch.com in Fort Greene reported, Romney’s red poop bags were outselling their blue Democratic counterparts 24-8, according to a tally written on a dry erase board behind the store’s register.
“There’s been a little bit confusion among some customers because they see that Romney is winning. We have to explain that it’s people voting for Romney to pick up poop with,”Rosenfeld said. “We’re running out of Romney.”
Posted by jwoestendiek October 17th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, bags, biodegradable, dog, dogs, election, feces, fort greene, metro paws, new york, obama, pet, pets, political, political dog poop bags, poop, president, presidential, products, romney, smear campaign, waste, whos your doggy
Ahhh, the many noble uses of DNA testing — to free a wrongly convicted prisoner from death row, to nail down a rape conviction, to match a baby daddy to a baby and make him take some financial responsibility.
Then there’s using it to determine ownership of dog poop.
Call it the science of waste, or a waste of science, but increasingly apartment and condo management companies are considering and in some cases signing up for a service that, through DNA testing, matches unscooped dog poop to the offending dog who left it behind.
A recent report in the Pioneer Press says the service arrived in the Twin Cities area two months ago.
Rosedale Estates North, a 180-unit apartment complex in Roseville, is now sending samples of unscooped poop to a laboratory in Tennessee, where it’s compared to DNA that has been supplied by every dog owner in the complex, usually via a swab that has been swiped in the dog’s mouth.
The first offending sample was picked up Tuesday, May 15. Once the dog who dropped it is determined, its owner will face a $100 fine. Second offenses bring another $100 fine. A third offense leads to an order to get rid of the pet.
Jim Simpson, owner of BioPets Vet Lab in Knoxville, said the company started offering the dog-DNA service called PooPrints in 2008. He charges $30 for each DNA sample to be registered and $50 for each stool sample that is tested later.
In some cities, the service is managed through Rent 411, an apartment-finding company. Its owner says there are seven PooPrint customers in Minnesota.
Another townhouse complex considered signing up, according to the Pioneer Press, but dropped the plan when a volunteer offered to pick up poop herself every week.
Sometimes, it seems, we turn to technology when far simpler, cheaper, less intrusive solutions are available. Do we really need forensic poop spies when we could just pick it up?
(Photo: Tenant Daniel Allen cleans up after his 6 1/2-month-old puppy Creed at the Roseville apartment complex. Allen supports the “PooPrints” program and says the complex is cleaner since it started; by John Doman / Pioneer Press)
Posted by jwoestendiek May 24th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, apartment, biopets, biopets vet lab, dna, dog poop, dogs, droppings, feces, fines, knoxville, lab, laboratory, management, minnesota, owners, pets, poop, pooprints, property, registry, samples, science, science of waste, stool, technology, tennessee, testing, tracking, twin cities, waste, waste of science
The former president of CNN Headline News in Atlanta was caught on a security camera when he placed a bag of dog poop into the mailbox of his neighbors.
Bob Furnad, who also served as CNN’s political director, was fined $180 for his act, which he told police in Covington was the result of an ongoing feud.
Video from the security camera shows Furnad walking his dog, and stopping to place the bag inside the mailbox in front of a neighbor’s home.
Benjamin Dameron and Ralph Miller said they couldn’t understand why Furnad, who also was once an instructor at the University of Georgia, did it.
The incident was reported by CBS in Atlanta.
“We were working, getting ready for a wedding and we were out on the driveway,” explained Dameron. “We thought, well, we’re this close, we’ll check the mail box to see if the mail’s come.”
“Something had, a package,” said Miller.
“It doesn’t happen very often,” said Capt. Kem Malcom with the Covington Police Department. “In this situation the victims actually had video. ”
“Mr. Furnad stated that he did place a bag containing dog feces in the victim’s mail box,” Malcom said. When asked why, Furnad told the officer it was the result of “an ongoing feud.”
The neighbors agreed to settle the issue at a local court in Covington.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 22nd, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, atlanta, Benjamin Dameron, bob furnad, camera, caught, cbs, cnn, cnn headline news, covington, dog, dogs, feces, feud, georgia, mailbox, neighbors, pets, political director, poop, president, professor, Ralph Miller, security, television, university of georgia, video, waste
The Saturday incident proves what he has been saying all along.
Both on his website and on signs he puts up in the park, he warns that dog poop can be dangerous; and urges that dog owners pick it up.
We have no disagreement with that.
According to his report in the New Haven Independent, a family on a picnic returned home and noticed their daughter “had a smelly substance under her fingernails … Upon further inspection, the 4-year-old had some of the same substance in her mouth and ears…
“Yep, you guessed it. The substance was dog feces. They cleaned her up but overnight had to take her to the emergency room because she was vomiting … Upon testing the little girl, they found her stomach swarming with coliform bacteria …”
A good doggie defense lawyer might point out here that, unlikely as it is to have come from another source, there’s no proof that the poop came from a dog. As one slightly less than sensitive commenter on the Ross post says, “there are a lot worse things than dog poop (needles for instance) littering the parks and streets of New Haven – you’re lucky that it was only dog poop and not something worse.”
As another chimed in “the girl could have pricked herself with a heroin needle, suffocated on a used condom or cut herself on broken beer bottles.”
A good doggie defense lawyer might further raise the question in the jury’s mind as to why the family, on top of not noticing their daughter when she was playing in poop, didn’t detect the presence of the substance until their return home.
But that’s not the point, at least not to Andy Ross, who had the misfortune of bearing the wrath of mom.
On his signs urging dog walkers to pick up the poop, he lists his email address and phone number. The mother, for some reason, called to yell at him.
“At first she blamed me until I pointed out that I am the one trying to stop this disgusting and total irresponsibility on behalf of dog owners,” he reported. The woman was threatening to sue the city, he said. ”She was piping mad and I do not blame her.”
“I hope that every group that has the ability to get out this horrible story to residents does,” Ross wrote. “Spring is here and children play in the park. Others just enjoy walking around the park with out having to navigate their way through dog feces. This is not just a Wooster Square Park problem; I am sure it is prevalent in other city parks too. This is both a health and quality of life issue we all need to pay attention to.”
Comments on his report are evenly divided between those who agree what happened to the four-year-old was horrendous, and those who point out it could have been worse, and ask why no one in the family noticed when the child was smearing poop on herself.
“Um, I can’t speak for everyone – but I grew up with a dog that poo’d all over the lawn, spent A LOT of time playing on said lawn, and even at 4 I knew not to touch that s#!t … Sounds like questionable parenting to me.”
“People who don’t pick up after their pets are selfish and uncivilized,” said another. “I would recommend to the upset mother that she needs to take the time to teach her child not to eat things off the ground, or at least be more attentive to what her child is doing.”
“Careless dog owners stare at their iPhones while the dog is defecating and completely miss it,” wrote another “… My real question is, why own a beautiful animal if you’re not going to give it your attention? Put down your phone and love your puppy … you’ll feel better.”
I’d agree that both the owner that failed to pick up their dog’s poop, and the parents of the child who failed to notice their daughter toying with it, share the blame. And I especially like the idea of blaming the iPhone as well.
Many people tend to get so absorbed in whatever it is they are doing on their phones that they fail to notice both the subtle things and the blatant ones going on around them, whether it’s what a dog might be dropping or what a child might be picking up.
Even though hand-held communication devices may not be to blame for this particular incident, they — or is it our dependence on them? — do seem to take us out of the moment we’re in.
So pick up the poop. Monitor your dog. Watch your children. Enjoy the company of both. And leave the stupid phone at home.
Let a day in the park be a day in the park.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 28th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: andy ross, animals, consideration, daughter, dog, dogs, droppings, feces, girl, grass, health, hospital, law, mad, mother, new haven, park, parks, pets, pick-up, picnic, played, playing, poop, responsibility, safety, sanitation, scoop, sickened, signs, vigilante, warning, wooster square park