Australian Shepherds are very intelligent and very strong-willed dogs. My Aussie, Kaycee, likes to be the one to call the shots. She is very animated and, at times, argumentative! Since she was little she has never been very fond of the bathtub. So when she dropped her monkey into the bathtub, she became very anxious about how to get it out. I decided this was an opportunity to help her conquer her fear of the bathtub, and let her decide how to retrieve her toy with just a little encouragement and praise from me.
Posts Tagged ‘dog stories’
by guest blogger Claire Stanton
Animals truly have so many fantastic qualities that humans actually strive to emulate. This may also be the reason why most super heroes try to be or demonstrate animalistic qualities which make them powerful, strong, and unique. Take for instance Batman. He’s a billionaire vigilante whose character is based on a bat. There’s also Spider-Man, and we all know that he got his super powers from a genetically modified spider. There’s Catwoman, Batgirl, Hawkman, and a host of other heroes and super villains which are either named after animals or have animal-like characteristics.
In reality, animals really are pretty fierce. There are beasts that can easily uproot trees, while some travel miles without food and water. Other creatures can last underwater for hours, and some carry their own arsenal of potent poisons that can kill a healthy, strapping person in just seconds or minutes. One animal, which also has lots of awesome qualities, is the dog. Yes, our cuddly, loyal companions actually possess many outstanding inherent qualities that benefit humankind in so many ways.
In cancer, early prevention is vital as this gives a victim a better chance of surviving the disease. Dogs, with their heightened smelling abilities, can actually smell organic substances that are linked to certain types of cancer, like lung cancer, breast cancer, and colon cancer. Some canines can also identify people who have COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), as well as type 1 diabetes. This is only the tip of the iceberg. With more intensive research, who knows what other cells or diseases dogs can smell and properly identify, right? Such characteristics greatly challenge the capability of supposedly high tech man-made gadgets.
2. Can Sense Epileptic Seizures
There are now so many dogs, regardless of breed or age, which are trained to sense human epileptic seizures. Such canines have the ability to sense oncoming epileptic seizures so that they will be able to warn their masters. By alerting their humans of impending seizures, people will be able to take safety precautions in order to reduce risks. These dogs are known as seizure alert dogs. There’s also a slightly different breed, which is the seizure response dog. Though this canine is not trained or capable of detecting a looming epileptic seizure, it can help its master during and after the epileptic episode.
3. Can Readily Identify Drugs and Bombs
Yes, dogs are valuable companions. But they are also awe-inspiring soldiers and law enforcement officers. Just ask anyone with a K-9, and he’ll tell you how police dogs work hard and how great they are at what they do; and they won’t even whine about their benefits or wages. Many dogs have been recognized and awarded because of their work in law enforcement. Dogs have been tasked to guard borders to help keep illegal drugs out of the country. In the modern-day battlefields, dogs are assigned to sniff for bombs in order to keep their human soldier companions safe.
4. Save Lives of Calamity Victims
Whatever the calamity, earthquakes, fires, floods, avalanche, or even bombings, dogs are there to “search and rescue” victims. Many dogs are faithful public servants that will go through dangerous underground mines, explore unstable crevices, get inside a fire-stricken structure, or sniff rubble to detect and help those who have been trapped. These creatures help human rescuers locate the lost and trapped. Such dogs have given thousands of people a second chance at life.
- Photo courtesy of photostock at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.
Claire Stanton writes about Oakwood veterinary service, dog breeds, and how-to articles regarding dog care. She is a freelance blogger who also contributes to wildlife and pet sites.
When I was younger I kept a journal of things that happened in my life. I can’t remember when or why I stopped writing in my journal, but decided to today that there are some things in life you never want to forget. Today was one of those days.
August 16, 2009 a Sunday afternoon with no schedule or duties vying for my attention, I decided to take my bike and my dog, Kaycee,
to the river walk for a little exercise. Kaycee is almost 7 years old, a very attentive red merle Australian Sheppard whose enthusiasm for adventure has faded little from when she was a pup. That being said, she was more than happy to accommodate my suggestion that we ‘go to the river’! We arrived at the river walk and decided on a shaded trail between two heavily used trails. I slowly pedaled down the trail allowing Kaycee to explore and sniff each and every bush.
I couldn’t help but notice how pleasant the weather was. The temperature was a perfect 72 degrees with a slight breeze and a nearly cloudless sky. Kaycee apparently had the same thought going through her head because, about that time, she trotted up next to my bike and looked up at me with a playful expression on her face. I exclaimed to her what a beautiful day it was, and she seemed to acknowledge my statement with her head slightly cocked. I asked her, “You wanna go fast”? Without hesitation she picked up the pace and we sped through the trees enjoying the soft breeze and cool air. It wasn’t long before we came to a section of the river where the water was a little calmer. I asked Kaycee, “Do you want to get in the river”? She looked at me with a somewhat startled expression and took a couple steps toward the river. Then she stopped and looked back at me with a questioning look. Almost as if to say, “Really, I can get in?” I assured her it was fine and she needed no further coaxing, she was down the bank and in the river before I could exit my bike! She waded and swam a little. Sniffed around the rocks and occasionally came to my side and looked up at me with the biggest grin on her face then was off to swim some more. After a few minutes in the water, I called to her to come and we continued down the trail.
We rode a little further down the trail at an even faster pace than before. She seemed to find a burst of energy from the cool water, just like a kid with new tennis shoes! She would crow-hop and trot playfully as I rode a little behind her. When I would slow down she would playfully taunted me to chase her, knowing full well that I would never catch her with her new-found energy! I talked to her as we strolled down the trail and encouraged her playfulness. She always responded by looking at me with an intent gaze as she trotted next to me while I rode.
Eventually we came to an area of the river where there are very few rapids and the water seems to just meander slowly along. We had played here many times before. She loved to play fetch with a stick and I could tell she knew we were stopping here to play. She could hardly contain herself and before I could lay my bike down in the grass, she was barking at the river and leaping in circles with excitement. I love to see her so happy! We were having so much fun together, and it was such simple things that we were enjoying…together. I would find a stick and throw it for her, then watch her swim back to shore with it, encouraging her to stay clear of the current. Nothing else mattered. Not even the young boys jumping off the railroad bridge or the people walking on the trail behind us. This was our time. This day was for us to enjoy.
After a lengthy game of fetch in the river, we proceeded further down the trail to the Duck Park. She was wet from head to toe, so I figured a roll in the grass would help remove the water from her furry coat. We slowly meandered by picnickers and people out enjoying the day until we came to a section of grass that no one was using. I got off my bike and encouraged Kaycee to roll around in the grass. That didn’t seem to be on her agenda and she proceeded to stand guard beside me as I sat in the grass. I told her she could lie down and rest, she was obviously tired from her swim in the river. She reluctantly curled up beside me, her wet body pressing against me, her paw on my leg. We sat in silence taking in the beautiful day.
The sights and sounds of the park seemed to have us both in a trance. There were high school boys playing Frisbee, children running and playing on the playground, geese lazily floating in the duck pond occasionally honking as they passed each other. When I looked at Kaycee her eyes seemed to say what I felt, “what a wonderful day!” After awhile, her soft whimper signaled she was rested and ready to move on. We made our way back the way we came, keeping a slow but steady pace as we passed one swimming hole and then another. We arrived at the truck and Kaycee hopped up in the truck, her body leaning on me as I started to pull out of the parking lot. She put her head on my shoulder as if to confirm that she had enjoyed our time together, that this had truly been a great day. I kissed her nuzzle and assured her of how special this day had been for me too.
I’d love to hear of a special time you spent with your dog. Just add it to the comment section below.
Photo courtesy: http://www.sunnydayphotos.com
The Waldo Canyon Fire in our neighboring city of Colorado Springs, CO has devastated and displaced many families. I am proud of the way neighboring communities have stepped up to support and help those affected in the fire, and that their pets were not forgotten! As the stories of sacrifice and service to the community continue to surface, I wanted to pass along some that will inspire and give hope to this devastating disaster.
Kudos to those on the front lines and behind the scenes as they continue to support the city of Colorado Springs, CO!