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Tag: sierra

How a single penny can kill your dog

Sierra, a West Highland terrier in Colorado, had 26 cents in her stomach.

But it was the single penny that killed her.

Owner Maryann Goldstein said Sierra was always attracted to change. As a puppy, the Westie swallowed 32 cents and had to have it surgically removed. In March, Sierra got sick again, and X-rays at the vet’s office showed a quarter and penny in her stomach.

The smaller coin was the bigger concern.

Pennies minted after 1982 contain zinc, and that’s toxic to dogs and cats, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association.

Dr. Rebecca Jackson, a staff veterinarian at Petplan pet insurance, told CBSNews.com that newer pennies are toxic because gastric acid from the pet’s stomach reaches the zinc center, causing it to be absorbed in the body rapidly.

She said zinc interferes with red blood cell production, and the longer the exposure, the greater likelihood red blood cells will be destroyed. Symptoms of zinc toxicity include vomiting, diarrhea, lack of appetite, lethargy, red-colored urine or looking jaundiced.

“Be sure to bank your spare change before curious pets can get their paws on it,” warned Jackson. “and if they do, get them to the emergency vet immediately.”

Goldstein, who now wears Sierra’s ashes in a heart-shaped container on a necklace, shared her dog’s story with CBS in Denver as a warning to others.

Some Christmas music, courtesy of Sierra

Singing Sierra is back, and just in time for Christmas.

Adam Yamada-Hanff, a Baltimore area community college student, has posted several videos on YouTube of Sierra “singing” as he plays his saxophone. This latest one also features Cody, who clearly considers himself a backkground vocalist.

We met Sierra and Adam back in May, when they — well, Adam, anyway — agreed to a quick sidewalk performance during my “Hey, That’s My Dog!” photo exhibit at Captain Larry’s, a bar and restaurant on Fort Avenue in South Baltimore.

Adam uses Sierra’s singing abilities to help raise money for animal shelters and rescue organizations.

Love Me Tender, featuring Sierra on vocals

Granted, you can find plenty of singing dogs on YouTube. Granted, not all of them appear to be enjoying their performance. And granted, not all of them are ready for American Idol.

But Sierra, shown here with her rendition of “Love Me Tender,” is a dog that “really likes to sing” — especially this particular song, according to her owner, Adam Yamada-Hanff, a 21-year-old community college student. (That’s him on saxophone.)

Besides, she’s a Baltimore dog.

There are some songs Sierra doesn’t like (“Sierra is a Doggie Diva!” Adam says). But “Love Me Tender” is one of her favorites, and Adam’s.AdamRoger[1]

“The lyrics are very fitting for dogs,” he said.

Sierra is an English Shepherd, almost 2 years old. Adam is trying to figure out a way to use her singing talents to help out animal shelters and rescue groups. “A singing dog will definitely encourage some donations,” he said.

Adam grew up with a dog named Roger — that’s them to the left –  a stray that, though he died several years ago, Adam and his family still think about often.