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Tag: shed

More questions arise about Gilbert kennel

sheriffpics

Workers at a Gilbert dog boarding operation were checking in newly-arrived dogs even as they stashed the corpses of other canine guests in a shed on the property.

That’s just one of the latest disturbing revelations in the case of Green Acre Dog Boarding, where 20 dogs were found dead from suspected heat-related causes last weekend.

The Arizona Republic reported yesterday that at least one customer checked her dogs in at about the same time workers were hiding the bodies of dogs who had perished and attempting to revive dogs who were dying.

Snow Aubel said she phoned the Green Acre Dog Boarding facility to confirm her pets’ drop-off time at about 10 a.m. Saturday morning and told the facility’s owner, Todd Hughes, she could be there within the hour.

He assured her that would be no problem, she said.

She dropped off her 7-year-old Weimaraner, Cheyenne, and 6-year-old Chesapeake Bay retriever, Yepa, Saturday — apparently just hours before sheriff’s deputies began arriving at the boarding center.

Her dogs stayed at the facility until Sunday afternoon, when word started spreading about the deaths and a representative from the online booking site she used to make the reservation alerted her the dogs should be moved.

“What really makes me upset is when I was there the poor dogs that had passed away were right underneath my nose, and I didn’t even know it,” Snow said. “… They should not have accepted any more dogs.”

sheriffpics2In total, 20 of the 28 dogs the Sheriff’s Office found at the facility perished. Cheyenne and Yepa were alive and unharmed.

Workers told investigators that the dogs were last checked on Thursday at about 11 p.m.

They say when they returned, at 5:30 a.m. Friday, a large number were discovered dead. Others were on the brink of death.

Sheriff’s Office officials initially called the deaths a “tragic accident,” based on the owners’ claims that one of the dogs chewed through an electrical cord, turning off the air conditioning.

But Sheriff Joe Arpaio on Monday said that designation may have been premature. He promised a thorough investigation.

Arpaio said the owners’ timeline didn’t add up: “How can you be healthy at 11 o’clock and dead at 5:30 in the morning? I think that’s the key element,” he said.

Much else about the case doesn’t add up either:

Temperatures that night weren’t too hot — by Phoenix standards — staying in the 80s. At least 17 dogs were boarded in one 10-foot by 10-foot laundry room. Veterinarians weren’t called when staff started finding dead and dying dogs. And the owners told at least some clients that their dogs, who had perished, had “run away.”

On top of that, kennel workers hosed the sick dogs down and applied ice to them, which is contrary to recommended treatment for heat exhaustion, and can lead to dogs going into shock.

The owners of the kennel, Todd and MaLeisa Hughes, were out of town when the dogs died, but they cut their trip to Florida short upon learning of the deaths. In their absence, the boarded dogs were being cared for by the son of U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz), Austin Flake, and his wife Logan.

The sheriffs office, which released photos of what was found at the kennel this week, said political connections won’t influence their investigation.

(Photos: Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office)

Camp Bow Wow wants your dog hair

Camp Bow Wow in Columbia — always happy to have your dog come in for a stay — is now accepting just your dog’s hair as well.

One of many groups and businesses across the country that have joined in the effort to collect dog and human hair to help combat the gulf oil spill, Camp Bow Wow is offering several options.

You can bring your pup in for a de-shedding treatment, or collect your dog’s shed hair and drop it by. Also, Camp Bow Wow will accept donations of human hair, if you know of any hair salons or barbers that want to pitch in.

The hair — as we explained last week, and as the video above shows — is being used in the making of oil booms that are being used to help absorb the oil.

Feathers, fur and other natural fibers, such as used nylon stockings are also used to make the booms, and Camp Bow Wow is accepting donations of those as well.

All the donated items collected — as well as cash contributions — are being passed on to Matter of Trust.

“Deluxe” FURminator easier on the hands

FURminator_blue_angle_01042The friendly folks at FURminator keep making a great, if pricey, product better — and ever more frustratingly difficult to get out of the package.

The product I was sent — the new fur-ejecting FURminator with an improved handle — worked amazingly well. They’ve improved the fur-ejecting technology, so, unlike with earlier models, hair shoots right out of the deshedding tool with the simple push of a button. The new handle is contoured to better fit the hand.

But the packaging! Why manufacturers insist on encasing their products in thick, clear plastic cocoons that take a hacksaw to open, I’ll never understand.

Perhaps it is to suggest that their product is so valuable it rates a hermetically sealed shroud that can be opened only by a team of physics majors.

Once I did manage to free the Deluxe FURminator from its package, which also featured a twisted wire to hold it firmly into its mold, it was smooth sailing.

As with earlier versions, it did a magnificent job of removing my dog’s loose hair and undercoat. In 15 minutes, not counting the 30 minutes it took to open it, I’d removed enough hair to fill a grocery bag. With the new and far more comfortable handle, I could have filled enough for two more bags, but I figured Ace might want to keep a little undercoat for winter.

The small “Deluxe Collection” FURminator, with fur ejector, retails for around $50, and the FURminator website lists some of the stores in which you can find it. The Deluxe Collection went on sale in pet stores today.

As for my now slightly used model, I repackaged it as best I could and it will be awarded — by Santa himself — to a worthy dog at the upcoming Pet Photos with Santa event at Riverside Park in Baltimore. (Saturday, Dec. 12 from 10 a.m. to noon). Proceeds from the event go to the Franky Fund for the care of sick and injured animals at Baltimore Animal Rescue & Care Shelter (BARCS).

FURminator: Are two blades better than one?

Two new variations on the FURminator are hitting the market, and after sampling them both, I can report that neither is as revolutionary a product as the original. Then again, it’s hard to improve on perfection.

The new models are a double-edged version of the deshedding tool that FURminator says works twice as fast as the original, and an ejectable version that, with the push of a button, moves dog or cat hair out of the blade.

The push button ejector does work — though it sometimes takes repeated pushes — and it frees you from having to manually clear the blade after every five to ten strokes. On the other hand, that wasn’t much trouble to begin with. It only took one quick swipe of the hand, which you need to do anyway if you’re bagging your sheddings.

Having a small yard and a big dog, that’s often what I do; otherwise, as much fur as the FURminator removes, you’ll soon be ankle deep in it. (Better yet is to take dog and FURminator to the park and let the fur fly; the birds like to use it for nests.)

As for the double-bladed FURminator, I found it more trouble than it’s worth — namely because fur can’t be removed from its blades with a simple swipe of the hand. Instead you’ve got to navigate a finger between the two blades. Even if it is removing twice the shedding, the blade clearing slows the process down more than it speeds it up. And it also means you have twice the number of blade covers to misplace, as I seem to do every time I use it.

That said, FURminator remains king in my book, in terms of grooming your dog and cutting down on the in-house shedding. The only down side? Expect to pay $50 or more, depending on the size you need.