Poor Courteney Cox.
The former “Friends” star and her daughter Coco recently moved into a new 25th floor condo with their two dogs — and taking Hopper and Harley all the way down to the ground floor and outside to go to the bathroom late at night was just too difficult.
That, at least, is what she said to Ellen DeGeneres in an interview that aired yesterday.
“I’m like, ‘How am I going to work this out? I could walk them at 10 p.m. at night but what if they have to go in the middle of the night?’” she said.
Apparently, solutions such as hiring a dog walker, or living somewhere with a yard, didn’t occur to the “Cougar Town” star.
Once the patch was in place, the dogs showed little interest in it, she said. “… Hopper and Harley would not go. I tried and I tried and it’s getting late and I can’t leave Coco in the condo by herself while I take them out so I just thought, ‘To hell with it. I’ll mark the grass.’”
Apparently, the idea of peeing in a jar, and then going out to pour it on the balcony patch, didn’t occur to her, either. Cox told DeGeneres she squatted on the balcony.
Given the product she’s using requires a new grass pad weekly, she told Ellen she’s worried she might have to keep reannointing them. “I didn’t think it through… but I will say Hopper peed on my pee.”
We have faith that Hopper and Harley, age 9 and 10, will be able to think it through, even without Cox marking every new patch, and — whether it’s 10 p.m. at night, or 6 a.m. in the morning — adjust to using the balcony potty.
(Photos: Screen grabs from Ellen DeGeneres show)
Posted by jwoestendiek January 8th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, artificial, balcony, cavalier king charles spaniels, celebrities, condo, condominium, cougar town, courteney cox, courtney cox, dogs, ellen degeneres, friends, grass, harley, hopper, pad, patch, pets, pooch potty, potty, star, television, urine, waste
I think that I shall never see
a tree unscathed by doggie pee
– Not Joyce Kilmer
Maybe there are some out there — a tree or two that, in their lifetimes, have somehow avoided ever being annointed by dog.
But, sharing the country with 75 million dogs, as both trees and we do, that is unlikely — and even more so in paved-over urban areas, where dogs sometimes outnumber trees, the living things they seem to most like to pee on.
For centuries, there seems to have been an unwritten agreement — a pee-ful coexistence — between dogs and trees. But, at least for half a century or so, there have been worries expressed about the cumulative effect of the continual sprinkling that some trees undergo, especially those in densely populated urban areas.
Some were recently voiced by a Philadelphia woman with an interesting perspective. Carrie Maria owns Monster Minders, a Philadelphia dog-walking service, and she’s a graduate of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s Tree Tenders program.
“Urine is highly acidic,” Maria wrote on the The Monster Minders blog. “Simply put, dogs’ urine ‘burns’ the tree’s trunk to the point that the tree becomes susceptible to diseases, pests, dehydration and nutrient loss.”
Maria’s report drew the attention of The Atlantic, which ran a lengthy piece on its blog, Atlantic Cities, complete with photos she had taken of disfigured trees in her neighborhood she says are likely victims of pee-blight.
We can’t confirm that the damaged trees she photographed (pictured here) are solely victims of dog pee — and neither could experts. But we give her credit for speaking up for the underdog, which in this particular case is trees.
“Your dog ‘marks’ the tree, then another dog walks by 10 minutes later, smells your dog’s scent and hits it again, 15 minutes later and another dog walks by, hits it again. This goes on day in and day out … One dog’s scent ends up on a tree and others just keep marking it, over and over until the tree is compromised.”
Where I live — not in a real big city, not downtown — the yard in front of my apartment has huge oak trees, planted probably a good half century ago, or more. Ace pees on his favorite one regularly, but it’s so well-established it doesn’t seem to mind, and show no signs of damage.
About this time of year, the oak trees start raining acorns, and every once in a while one drops and hits Ace in the head. He jumps up and looks around, unaware he has been the victim of poetic justice.
Impervious as the big oaks in my yard may be, saplings in cities — the ones growing in a few square feet of dirt, the ones that have become potty stops for dozens of dogs daily — are another story.
“Repeated hits with urine basically causes an ‘open wound’ right on the base on the tree. Since the bombardment from pee is semi-constant in an urban environment, the trees never have a chance to heal from past damage. These wounds open the trees up to a slew of diseases that they just can’t fight off.” Maria wrote.
Her solution: Curb your dog.
It’s an old phrase, and one that – outside of places like New York — lots of people don’t even understand. It means to pee where the street meets the curb. And while that may lead to gutters running yellow, and car tires taking on a pee-scent, thereby attracting more to dogs to take aim on them, Maria finds that preferable to the tree assault.
“It’s simple. Redirect your dog when he/she is headed for a tree,” Maria says. ”Teach your dog to ‘curb it.’”
How big a factor is dog pee, compared to all the other hazards urban trees face — like road salt, car doors, poor soil, limited room to grow and youths with pen knives? As the Atlantic Cities blog points out, experts aren’t sure:
“Whether pee hurts trees is a question that’s attracted virtually no research attention since its earliest mention in the academic literature …”
The post mentions one presentation, way back in 1959, in which a plant pathologist named Pascal Pirone warned of the dangers. In ‘Why shade trees die along city streets,’ a presentation given at the International Shade Tree Conference, he said ‘dog canker’ could kill trees up to 6 inches in diameter.”
But the Atlantic post also quoted a staff member at the Smithsonian Institution’s horticulture department as saying the trunk damage shown in Maria’s photos could have come from a number of causes, “including mechanical damage [i.e. mowers, car doors, pedestrians], southwest injury, disease [cankers], and insects [borers].”
While the extent of the harm caused by dog urine remains untallied, most experts agree it can’t be helping trees.
“We deal with it in the sense that I imagine trees get added stress or maybe anxiety” from dogs, says John Thomas, associate director at Washington, D.C.’s Urban Forestry Administration. “I don’t know how much dog urine you need to kill a tree. But there’s definitely something there…. Somebody could definitely get a masters or Ph.D. out of studying it.”
(Photos: Top photo by John Woestendiek; tree photos by Carrie Maria / Monster Minders)
Posted by jwoestendiek September 11th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: acid, animals, atlantic cities, blogs, carrie maria, curb, curb your dog, damage, dog, dogs, downtown, health, horticulture, marking, monster minders, pee, pets, philadelphia, saplings, scent, trees, urban, urination, urine
About 300 dogs found living in cramped and unsanitary conditions were removed by authorities this week from Spindletop Refuge, the largest pit bull rescue organization in Texas.
The Montgomery County Sheriff’s department on Tuesday served a search warrant at the refuge in Wills, removing dogs from five buildings, including one two-story structure that housed 80 dogs.
Almost all of the dogs were pit bulls, many of them sent there after being rescued by other organizations.
Teams from the Humane Society of the United States were assisting in relocating the dogs. Animal Farm Foundation said it also plans to assist in rehoming the dogs.
“We share HSUS’s goal of ensuring the best possible outcome for each of the dogs, and we’re grateful that HSUS stepped up to oversee a humane and just outcome for all of these dogs. Once the dogs have been triaged at an undisclosed safe location, Animal Farm Foundation will work with HSUS to individually evaluate each dog for rescue or adoption placement.”
The Montgomery County Police Reporter said the dogs were being taken to an undisclosed location to be evaluated by veterinarians.
No charges have been filed yet.
(Photo: Scott Engle / Mongtomery County Police Reporter)
Posted by jwoestendiek July 19th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: 300 dogs, animal farm foundation, animal welfare, animals, cramped, crowded, dogs, feces, hsus, montgomery county, pets, pit bull, pitbull, refuge, removed, rescue, sanctuary, shelters, sheriff, spindletop, texas, unsanitary, urine, wills
Given all the attention received by Mitt Romney’s former dog, Seamus — he of roof-riding fame — it’s not surprising that Rick Santorum’s dog story takes a back seat.
Then again, unlike Romney’s, Santorum’s doesn’t reflect bad judgment, just bad luck. He brought it out of his playbook again this weekend to make the point that, well, I’m not sure what point it makes, other than he doesn’t let a little dog pee deter him.
On Saturday night, Santorum told the tale — from his first campaign for Congress in 1990 — to an Ohio crowd of more than 1,000 Republicans at the Summit County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day Dinner. The Washington Post published it verbatim:
“…We went knocking doors in Upper St. Clair, which is outside of Pittsburgh, a nice little neighborhood … And I knocked on the door and this little elderly lady comes to the door. … She had a little dog that was barking. And I said, ‘Hi, I’m Rick Santorum. I’m running for Congress.’ … She looked at me and goes, ‘Oh, you look so hot.’ She goes, ‘Why don’t you come in for a glass of water?’
“So I went in and sat down. And the dog is running around, barking. And she goes in and gets her glass of water, and I sit down … She hands me the glass of water. And the dog jumps up and hops in my lap.
“Okay, fine. So, I had the dog. I had a sip or two of water. We chatted. And the next thing I know, there is a warm sensation on my lap.
“And I jump up, and on my tan pants is a huge wet spot where you don’t want a huge wet spot. So, I jumped up to look at it, and she was aghast. She reached for my pants and said, ‘Let me dry that off.’ I backed away and said, ‘No, that’ll be fine.’ She goes, ‘Let me get a hairdryer.’ Heaven forbid! And I said, ‘No, thank you very much.’ I start to move out the door and she goes, ‘Well, take your pants off. I’ll put them in the dryer.’ That was the last I heard from her, because I was out the door …
“Undeterred, I soldiered on. … So, I looked at my sheet, and I say, ‘Well, who’s the next door?’ Well, the next door is a name I recognize. Anybody remember the closer for the 1979 World Champion Pittsburgh Pirates? Kent Tekulve, correct … I said, ‘Hi, Mr. Tekulve. I’m Rick Santorum, I’m running for Congress…’
Tekulve checked out the wet blotch on the candidate’s pants, but ended up voting for him anyway.
“So, I wanted to share that with you,” Santorum concluded. “I’ve walked the path that you’ve walked. Maybe a little differently, but I’ve walked the path. And we’re walking the same path in this election.”
(Photo: Photo: Tony Dejak / AP)
Posted by jwoestendiek February 20th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: accident, animals, campaign, candidates, congress, dog, dogs, kent tekulve, mitt romney, ohio, pants, pee, pennsylvania, pets, pirates, pitcher, pittsburgh, presidential, republican, rick santorum, seamus, st. clair, story, summit county, urine
As was the case with our kudzu dogs, this one requires just a squirt of imagination.
Ace and I were walking the streets of downtown Missoula when we saw a chocolate Labrador stopping to pee — well, not really stopping at all, which was the interesting part.
For almost half a block, he zig-zagged along the sidewalk, leaving a squiggly trail behind him.
Perhaps he, or his owner, had no time to stop — maybe the human had an urgent appointment, or maybe the dog had a weak bladder; or maybe, just maybe, the dog was expressing himself in the other meaning of the phrase.
Maybe he’d discovered a way around not being able to speak human — and it’s just a case of no one having discovered his amazing ability yet.
Sure, it doesn’t look like much now, but let’s see what happens when we turn it sideways.
Don’t bother moving your computer; allow me:
If I’m not mistaken, it spells Missoula, Montana.
Posted by jwoestendiek November 6th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: ace, animals, behavior, bladder, chocolate labrador, dog, dog's country, dogs, dogscountry, downtown, missoula, montana, pee, pets, road trip, sidewalk, trail, traveling with dogs, travels with ace, urination, urine
A French study says dogs can sniff out signs of prostate cancer in human urine — a finding that could lead to better cancing-sensing technology, according to its lead author.
While some scientists have questioned similar reports of dogs with such diagnostic powers in recent years, French researcher Jean-Nicolas Cornu, who works at Hospital Tenon in Paris, said, “The dogs are certainly recognizing the odor of a molecule that is produced by cancer cells.”
Researchers don’t know what that molecule is, according to U.S. News & World Report, but the study’s findings could prove useful in the detection of cancer, which often goes undetected until it is too late to treat.
Urine tests can turn up signs of prostate cancer, Cornu said, but miss some cases.
In the study, two researchers spent a year training a Belgian Malinois, a breed already used to detect drugs and bombs.
The dog was trained to differentiate between urine samples from men with prostate cancer and men without. Ultimately, researchers placed groups of five urine samples in front of the dog to see if it could identify the sole sample from a man with prostate cancer. The dog correctly classified 63 out of 66 specimens.
If the findings hold up in other studies, they’ll be “pretty impressive,” said urologist Dr. Anthony Y. Smith, who was to moderate a discussion on the findings Tuesday at the American Urological Association annual meeting in San Francisco.
Posted by jwoestendiek June 2nd, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, belgian malinois, cancer, detect, detecting, detection, diagnostic, disease, dogs, france, french, hospital tenon, jean-nicolas cornu, medicine, molecule, news, odor, ohmidog!, paris, pets, prostate, research, science, sniffing, study, urine
Robert Holloway went to a Virginia PetSmart to pick up some bird seed and dog food.
Instead, he slipped on a pile of dog poop in the pet-friendly store, hurting his back and knocking out four of his false teeth.
Now he wants $1 million, according to a lawsuit filed in federal court. PetSmart and its employees “negligently allowed animals to enter the premises and deposit feces in such a manner as to create a dangerous and hazardous condition,” his lawsuit states.
PetSmart has filed an initial reply stating that the store and its manager that day were not negligent in the accident. Pet accidents are a fact of life in its stores, where leashed pets are welcome, a company spokeswoman told the Virginian-Pilot.
Holloway, of Poquoson, went to a Newport News PetSmart on Jan. 18, 2009. While he didn’t fall to the floor after slipping, his body twisted violently and he smacked his head against something nearby, his lawyer said. As a result, Holloway, 70, who already had back problems, had to have surgery.
A spokeswoman for PetSmart, the largest pet specialty retailer in the country, said employees are trained to clean up messes and customers are encouraged to clean up after their pets. Every store has “oops” stations, clearly marked, with clean-up supplies. “They’re animals. There’s always going to be accidents,” she said.
A similar suit was filed by a woman who slipped and fell in dog urine at the same store. The judge ruled against her, saying the woman failed to show that any store employee knew there was urine on the floor.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 2nd, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: accident, animals, court, dogs, fall, feces, federal, lawsuit, newport news, news, ohmidog!, one million dollars, pet, pets, petsmart, poop, retail, robert holloway, slip, slip and fall, slipped, store, sued, suing, urine, virginia, waste
The former owner of Almost Heaven Kennel in Pennsylvania, taking the stand in his trial on animal cruelty charges, portrayed himself as a savior of dogs in need of rescue.
Derbe “Skip” Eckhart took the stand Friday, describing his efforts to tend to the hundreds of animals at his Lehigh County kennel, the Associated Press reported.
Eckhart testified Friday that he rescued many dogs from breeders who no longer wanted them, saving animals that would otherwise have been destroyed. He disputed prosecution claims that he neglected dogs and cats in his care.
Breeders routinely called Eckhart and said that if he didn’t come for their unwanted dogs, they would simply shoot them, Eckhart testified.
“And that’s what I did,” he said. “I came for them.”
Prosecutors allege Eckhart kept hundreds of dogs in filthy conditions.
Witnesses from the Pennsylvania SPCA and the state Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement testified earlier in the trial that dogs at the kennel lived in their own urine and feces and suffered from a lack of routine veterinary care, contributing to their poor health.
Eckhart said he enjoyed a “very good working relationship” with animal welfare agencies until October, 2008, when agents from the Pennsylvania SPCA and the state dog law bureau raided the kennel, detaining Eckhart and his workers for hours while the media looked on.
Eckhart’s attorney, Jeff Conrad, has maintained his client was targeted by publicity-seeking animal-welfare officials.
Eckhart said he took in about 30 dogs from another breeder only a few weeks before the raid. He acknowledged that some of those dogs still needed to be bathed and groomed at the time of the raid, but insisted that he was getting to them.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 27th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: almost heaven, animals, breeders, conditions, cruelty to animals, derbe eckhart, dogs, feces, kennel, lehigh county, neglect, news, ohmidog!, pennsylvania, pets, rescues, savior, saviour, state dog law, urine
In light of the utterly ridiculous, yet strangely fascinating debate over yellow snow here in Baltimore, we thought it was time for Frank Zappa to weigh in on the subject.
Also, it gives me the opportunity to showcase my art along with the Baltimore-born legend. Call it a joint exhibit. As you listen (above) to Frank, you can view (below) my work, “Yellow Snow,” which, after being showcased here last week, met with rave review. I briefly considered turning it into a streaming video, but good taste (which Frank never let bother him) overruled:
What brought yellow snow to the forefront in Baltimore — in addition to three feet of snow and dogs having to relieve themselves — was an item in Jill Rosen’s Baltimore Sun blog, “Unleashed.”
It focused on the the complaint of one woman whose sensibilities were offended by the sight, and who suggested dog owners make some attempt to remove the yellow snow their dogs created.
More than 75 “Unleashed” readers have commented — some agreeing with her:
“The person who wrote this letter is absolutely right. The replys and comments also shows the stoopidity, selfishness and lazyness of the ignoramous dog owners in Baltimore. I cannot wait to move from my home town. This snowstorm has shown the worst in most of you.”
The majority considered it a fact of winter life, and pointed out the pee is always there; the snow just makes it visible. Others offered suggestions ranging from spray painting the yellow spots white, to requiring dog owners to cover up the yellow snow with clean white snow (something nature may be giving us a hand with by tomorrow.)
That’s right, more snow, which will lead to more yellow snow and, if it’s a large snowfall, more city residents setting out furniture (chairs, usually) to save the parking spaces they shoveled out.
The mayor has asked residents to stop doing that, but she hasn’t taken a stand on the issue of yellow snow yet (and I’m not saying she should). In a way, those who save their spaces with chairs are already paying a price, I’ve noticed. Dogs — though not mine, of course — tend to christen new vertical objects that appear on the street, and a lot of the parking place staker-outers will be lugging those objects back inside.
Among the many things worse than yellow snow, I’d think — and I’m sure Frank Zappa would agree — is yellow furniture.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 21st, 2010 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, baltimore, baltimore sun, chairs, complaint, dog, dogs, feces, frank zappa, furniture, holders, parking, pee, pets, snow, space, unleashed, urine, waste, winter, yellow snow, zappa
There’s a heated debate going on about yellow snow over at “Unleashed,” the Baltimore Sun pets blog.
It all got started when a reader — seeing no art whatsover in what happens when hot yellow dog urine splashes onto cold and pure white snow — expressed her displeasure with befouled snow, and went so far as to suggest dog owners chisel, collect and dispose of the icy yellow matter.
“I’m not a dog owner, but I can’t be the only person to be grossed out while trying to walk in Baltimore right now,” wrote Eeda Wallbank. “After the snow last week there are still many areas where the sidewalk or street is the only cleared space for folks to take their dogs out for their business. Most people are still being polite and at least picking the poo up, but the urine is just disgusting.
“The dog goes in the only cleared walk space and urinates, then it freezes. So everyone else has to walk through or attempt to go around these ‘puddles.’ Heaven forbid someone actually slip on ice or snow and fall into greater contact. I shudder everytime I see the yellow snow and thank god I don’t have kids to worry about (my cats are my babies, but they stay firmly inside) … Dog owners carry around bags for poo, what would be so wrong with attempting to remove this frozen urine? Or at least have a small shovel to clear the walk space a little?”
That led to a flood/flurry of comments. Among those that poured in were some siding with Ms. Wallbank, a few suggesting she “get a life,” and many asking if society doesn’t have bigger things to worry about than yellow snow.
Scooping poop is one thing. But I don’t think we need yellow snow laws — even if it does offend the sensibilities of Ms. Wallbank and others. It’s a fact of life. It passes (twice, in fact). Until the snow melts, step around it, add it to the list of unavoidable wintertime inconveniences, or maybe even try and view it as modern art — a canine, working by instinct, on a vast blank canvas, provided by nature .
It’s a little like that, with one big difference. With yellow snow, everybody knows exactly what the artist was trying to express.
(Artwork: “Yellow Snow,” by John Woestendiek)
Posted by jwoestendiek February 17th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, art, blank, blizzard, canvas, dog owners, dogs, feces, hygeine, natural, nature, offended, offensive, ohmidog!, parks, pee, pets, sanitation, scoop, snow, snowfall, urine, waste, weather, white, winter, yellow, yellow snow