Friday, 25 September 2009

Slaughter of Dogs in China - GREAT NEWS!!!!

I've received the following e-mail fom IFAW about the dog cull in China, reproduced below.
See my previous post of Wednesday 16th September.
Great news!

Thanks to the immediate response of our supporters, the dog cull in Qinhuangdao has been averted.

The details are still coming in - but it's clear that the government in Qinhuangdao felt the pressure from IFAW supporters around the world. Public notices and government web site postings announcing the cull have been taken down.

If you ever wondered whether one person can make a difference - well, this is proof that they can! Every email, message, and dollar sent had a direct effect on averting a widespread, unnecessary and cruel slaughter.

We will be keeping a close eye on the area until we are convinced that no dogs will be harmed in the future. Many locals sent their pets away to friends and family in order to protect them, and we want to make sure Qinhuangdao remains a safe place for them to return.

You see, local government officials often resort to dog culls because China has no rabies prevention program or animal welfare legislation. A single case of rabies can create a panic - leading to calls for a mass dog slaughter at anytime.

That's why it's so important for IFAW to establish vaccination and sterilisation programs within China to control overpopulation and disease - before more culls are called for.

Your donation is critical to developing these programs and ending dog culls once and for all.

I'm so proud of what we were able to achieve for these dogs. I want to thank all of our animal friends like you for helping to prevent such tragic and needless suffering, and for making today such a wonderful day for animals.

Sincerely, Fred O'ReganIFAW CEO

With IFAW's support, the first draft of national animal welfare legislation for China is being completed. If passed into law this will permanently ban the dog culls we have been campaigning against. Help support this legislation by donating now to protect animals around the world from cruelty and exploitation.


What a wonderful result.

Saturday, 19 September 2009

The Gentle Art of Medicating Your Dog, or How We Got Our Dog to Take Her Medicine

Many pet dog owners have faced the difficult task of getting their dog to swallow its tablets or other medicine.
Some dogs are easy - they just chew them up or swallow them whole. Others are more difficult, to say the least!

Olive, our female greyhound, is very aware of her tablets. She is an old dog (now 13 years) and is on daily tablets - 3 in the morning and 4 at night. We have had to try various subterfuges to get her to take her medicine.
We've found that the size of the tablet makes no difference.

The methods we've tried are :
  • Hide them just under the top layer of her food. We found the tablets at the bottom of of an otherwise empty food bowl!
  • Put them in her mouth and gently hold her mouth shut for a moment. She spits them out, and you then get wet (expensive) tablets which start to disintegrate.
  • She has dried food, so we added some tinned meat. Hide the tablets inside the meat. This worked for a while, but she soon got wise to that!
  • Hide them inside some meat and offer as a treat. Worked a few times - but she soon worked out how to eat the meat and spit out the tablets. Quite a trick!
  • We've tried sardines, tuna, tinned meat chunks, freshy cooked chicken, sausages etc. They all worked for a while. Freshly cooked chicken skin still works - wrap it around the tablet and she eats the lot. Sausages whch haven't gone cold still work too. Hiding them in a good sized ball of tinned Chappie Original (fish-based) works , but she does refuse them sometimes.
  • Cheese is very good. You need a cheese which is easily moulded. But our Olive became suspicious after a while!
  • Our latest trick is to use Winalot Shapes. We smear them with butter, stick the tablet to it, and then cover it with some more butter. You have to be careful with crumbly tablets as they tend to break up. This works everytime (so far!). I guess that any small biscuit will do.
  • I have been told that hiding the tablets in peanut butter works well. We haven't tried this yet.
I think that the best approach is to use one of the methods a few times and then change to something else. This should fool most dogs, I think.

Of course some medicines are in liquid form. You can just mix that into the top layer of food. I've found it a good idea to put something very tasty and smelly on top, just to mask the smell of the medicine.

If anyone out there has found a good way of getting their dog to take its medicine please let me know!

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Slaughter of Dogs in China!!! Act Now to End this Appalling Massacre

A few days ago I received an e-mail from Fred O'Regan of IFAW (International Fund for Animal Welfare).

It was about the horrific enforced slaughter of dogs in China.

I was going to create a post straight away, but I was so upset about what I had read and seen, that I couldn't bring myself to do so.

The slaughter is underway, but better to be a bit late than never to do someting about it.

The e-mail from IFAW is reproduced below. Images are from IFAW. Personal data has been removed.


From: Fred O'Regan, International Fund for Animal Welfare

Subject: Urgent: Dog Slaughter Set to Begin Tomorrow: Help Us Stop it

Date: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 6:57 PM

Help Us Stop the Qinhuangdao Dog Slaughter Before it Starts

Dear Trevor, I've just received an urgent report that another city in China is planning a mass cull to slaughter any unregistered dogs, strays, and even registered family dogs that are over 14 inches (35cm) tall. Dog owners in Qinhuangdao, Hebei Province, are even being told to kill their own dogs, or else their dogs will be beaten to death by the police and the owners will be charged a fine. Can you imagine being forced to kill your own dog to save it from a more brutal slaughter?

Unless we can stop this now, the Dog Death squads could be roaming the streets tomorrow – beating, stoning, and killing dogs – some right in front of their owners.You might remember the attached e-mail I sent you recently about a similar cull. We found out too late for many of those dogs, but this time we have a chance to stop it before it starts. I need you to do two things right now:

1. Send an e-mail to the Chinese Ambassador in your country. So you can act quickly, I've written an e-mail for you - click here to review and send it.

2. Make a donation to help IFAW end dog culls in China and to protect animals around the world from similar cruelty. It’s crucial that you act quickly –according to the government notice, the police will begin combing the streets tomorrow to kill dogs. Please send your message now, and then forward this e-mail to as many of your friends as possible urging them to help us stop this slaughter.

In addition to working to stop this cull, IFAW is helping draft China's first national animal welfare legislation that will prohibit culls like this. And we're developing a rabies vaccination and sterilization program that we can offer to rural communities to humanely prevent rabies and control dog populations.We’ve stopped culls like this in other Chinese cities, and we can stop this one too!
Please send your message of protest today.
And then please make a donation to help us continue our efforts to help save animals around the world from cruelty and exploitation.Please act now to save these dogs - make it the very next thing you do. Thank you,Fred

You can help us end bloodbaths like this and protect dogs in China from future culls

A death squad pursues a terrified dog.

Please help stop the slaughter.

Dear Trevor, A massive cull in the Chinese city of Hanzhong has claimed the lives of more than 30,000 dogs - and now we need your help to make sure that it never happens again.

The local government ordered the mass slaughter of all dogs as the result of a few cases of rabies deaths. Dog killing squads are stalking the streets, mercilessly beating dogs to death with sticks and rocks.

Friendly dogs - even healthy family pets - are being slaughtered right in front of their owners. Can you even begin to imagine how you'd feel if that happened to your dog?

IFAW has pleaded with government officials to stop the killing - and now we turn to you.

Please help us stop these cruel and massive slaughters once and for all.

Horrifying scenes of cruelty

Some of the pictures from culls like these are so horrifying that I can't even show them to you. And I hate having to describe this, but I think you need to know the truth about what's happening.In one series of pictures, several small and fluffy white dogs - you can just tell they're used to snuggling on the laps of their loving owners - are trapped in a makeshift cage. One by one, the dogs are pulled out with a pair of long metal tongs, and brutally beaten with a stick. And then - even though it appears that some of the dogs may still be alive - they're tossed into a pit to be burned.I can't even imagine the pain and terror these poor dogs endure when the fire is set.So many dogs will suffer slow and painful deaths...we must stop this cruelty now!

What we're doing and how you can help

We have received so many messages in the past few days from animal lovers like you inside and outside China - pleading with us to step in and stop the slaughters like the one in Hanzhong City.
  • I assure you, IFAW is working to end these culls:
    We've already contacted local authorities in Hanzhong City to urge them to end the slaughter. Now you can help by contacting the Chinese Ambassador in your country.
  • IFAW is creating an emergency rabies vaccination fund so that we can offer rural communities in China an alternative to mass slaughters like the one in Hanzhong. Please give generously to our emergency rabies vaccination fund.We're working with the central government to pass animal welfare legislation in China that will ensure the humane treatment of all animals. IFAW has already helped major cities like Beijing establish dog regulations that mandate humane vaccination and population control.

We CAN stop culls like this

We recently joined with concerned animal lovers in China to stop a similar mass slaughter in the city of Heihe by pointing out that the killing of dogs that have rightful owners is a violation of the basic rights of a citizen - owned dogs and cats are considered the "personal property" of Chinese citizens, and should be protected under China's Constitution.

Plus, it has been proven that rabies can be effectively controlled by a well-managed vaccination program. In fact, a humane vaccination and neuter program in Chennai, India, has dramatically reduced rabies cases there by over 95%.

So we must act now to stop the killing!
Please click here to contact the Chinese Ambassador in your country to call for an end to mass slaughters like this and to encourage China to pass legislation that protects all animals, including companion animals.

And then please donate what you can today to help us set up an emergency vaccination fund to help cities in China establish rabies prevention programs, help eliminate these mass dog culls once and for all, and to continue our mission to protect animals around the world from cruelty.

The slaughtered dogs of Hanzhong City deserved a better fate. Please help us ensure that dogs in other communities in China are protected from similar mass killings.Thank you so much for your help,

Fred O'ReganIFAW CEO

p.s. I have to tell you, the images of this dog slaughter keep me up at night. If you've ever enjoyed the companionship of a dog, then you know that they truly are members of our families. Please help us protect family pets by donating to our vaccination fund and our anti-cruelty campaigns around the world.
Please forward this e-mail to your friends, family, and colleagues who care about animals as much as you do.


Well, I felt pretty sick after reading that.
I've contacted the Chinese embassy. Please do the same.
e-mail your friends with this information please.
Something can be done. If we all act, a huge amount can be done.
Thank you.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Working With Dogs ~ A Career With Animals ~ Have YOU Got What It Takes?

Do You Fancy a Career with Animals? Would you like to Work with Dogs?
Have You Got What It Takes?... Find Out Here!

This a rewrite of a post I did last October plus extra material.

So, you would like to work with dogs. Good for you!
But working with dogs (or any other animal) isn't just a nice job - it's a way of life.
I worked full time in dog rescue and also as a zookeeper, so I am speaking with the voice of hands-on experience!

And this is what it takes :

  • Complete commitment and Total Dedication
  • A Compassionate and caring nature
  • Infinite Patience
  • A strong sense of responsibility
  • Physical fitness and stamina
  • Good powers of observation
  • Attention to detail
  • A willingness to learn
  • The humility to realise that you are never going to know everything about animals
  • Good communication skills and People skills
  • Courage (mental, physical, and emotional)
  • Being prepared to do unpleasant jobs
  • You may have to make difficult decisions - including life & death ones.
  • Be willing to undergo further education & training
  • Even more dedication!
You must also :

  • Know your strengths
  • More importtantly, know your weaknesses
  • Be mentally, physically and emotionally robust
The welfare of a dog comes before your needs.....If an animal's welfare is compromised you stay until it is sorted - even if you have made plans to go out!

Good observation, even of something apparently insignificant, can mean life or death to a dog!

Most work with dogs is badly paid! You won't get financially rich, but you will become rich in many better ways.

Some things like communication and people skills can be learnt, others like observation and physical fitness can be improved by practice.
Other things are down to your personality.
Knowledge comes with experience and training. You may have to take one or more courses and obtain qualifications. Learning is a lifelong activity!

Working with animals isn't an escape from working with people. You will be part of a team. You will also have contact with the authorities and the general public.

Think long and hard, do some voluntary work with animals. Appropiate work experience can be an eye-opener! It will also show a potential employer that you are dedicated.

I will give you two real examples of observation and dedication :

1) On observation. A stray female dog was brought in just as I was locking up for the night. When I got her out of his car, I noticed a tiny spot of very dark blood on the blanket she was lying on. I checked with the finder and he said it wasn't there when he put it in. ALARM BELLS! I checked her vagina for discharge by swabbing with some damp cotton wool. The result - a dark blood-like discharge. Potential pyometra ( a serious & potentially fatal womb infection). I took her straight to the vet and she underwent a life-saving operation. If I had not noticed, or had chosen to ignore the spot of blood, I would have found a dead dog in the kennels in the morning!

2) On dedication. A dog had been locked in a house on its own for 2 days. The owner had been injured and was in hospital. The local people were unable to deal with the problem. I waited at work until gone 6pm for a phone call from the police. Then, with a colleague, drove a 40 mile round trip to collect the dog. Once it was fed and settled, I locked up and then arrived back home just gone 8.30pm. The theatre tickets for that evening went in the bin!

Rewards of the job

Working with dogs gives you the chance to get close to and to understand another species. We need to reach outside of ourselves and make contact with other living things - ask anyone who has stroked a cat or patted a dog!

If you work in rescue, helping an abused dog recover and then finding it a loving home for the rest of its life is fantastically rewarding. For me that was the best part of the job.

Still want to work with dogs? Yes? Great!

If you are interested in dog training you may find this of interest - just Click Here

There are many different types of work and career opportunities with dogs

  • Work in a rescue / rehoming centre
  • Boarding kennels*
  • National charities like RSPCA and Dogs Trust
  • Police dog handler
  • Armed forces dog handler
  • Customs and excise dog handler
  • Dog Grooming*
  • Dog Training*
  • Dog Behaviour*
  • Veterinary Nurse
  • Veterinary Surgeon
  • Pet photography*
  • Pet food /pet shop*
You can also set up your own business, such as dog grooming or boarding kennels. The ones marked * in the list are all possible businesses that you could run.
If you don't want to be hands-on, you can work as an administrator, fund raiser, secretary, keep accounts or other office work.

You will need to go to veterinary college if you want to be a vet. There is a huge amount of competition for places.
You may need to obtain animal care qualifications, such as an NVQ in Animal Care.

I am going to stop writing now. I will write a longer piece on qualifications soon.

If you are interested in dog training you may find this of interest - just Click Here

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Dog Treat Recipes ~ Healthy & Tasty Treats For Your Dog!


The recipes are easy to make. Any which are vegetarian are marked (V).

The flour is always whole wheat unless stated otherwise

Roll out to 1/2 inch thickness unless otherwise stated

(1) Wholemeal Dog Biscuits (V)

To make about 40 biscuits :

500g whole wheat flour

225g wheatgerm

4 tablespoons bran flakes

2 tablespoons malt extract

2 tablespoons of olive oil

About 400ml of water

Mix all the dry ingredients together. Add the malt , oil and water. Mix well to make a stiff dough. Roll out to about 1/2 inch thick. Cut into shapes. Bake in a moderate oven until hard.

(2) Liver Cake

To make about 45 treats

900g whole wheat flour

450g liver

225g oats

About 150ml water

2 eggs

Put the liver into a blender,add the flour & oats. Add the beaten eggs. Add enough water to make a stiff mixture. Roll out to 1/2 inch thickness and cut into shapes. Bake at 180C, Mark 4 (pre-heated) unti hard.

(3) Veggie Treats (V)

Makes about 30 treats

200g whole wheat flour

100g assorted vegetables (NOT Onions) e.g. carrots, courgette, celery,cabbage

Couple of garlic cloves

2tablespoons dried parsley

Finely chop the veg& garlic. Mix together with the flour & parsley. Add some water to make a stiff dough. Roll out and cut into shapes.

Bake at 190c, mark 5 until hard.

(4) Sardine Smashers

To make about 50 treats

300g flour

200g wheatgerm

Can of sardines in oil (mashed up)

About 300ml water

Mix everything together - only add enough water to make a stiff dough. Roll out and cut into shapes

Bake at 150c, Mark2 until done

(5) Tuna Tasties

As for (4) ,but use tuna instead of sardines

If you would like even more dog treat recipes please visit :

There is no obligation.

(6) Cheese Biscuits (V)

To make about 36 biscuits

400g flour

100g grated cheese

100ml olive oil

1 clove garlic

About 200ml water

Mix all the ingredients to make a firm dough

Roll out and cut into shapes

Bake at 190c, Mark 5 until brown (about 15 minutes)

(7) Training Treats

500g liver

1 tablespoon garlic powder (optionaal)

Cut the liver into strips and place onto a baking tray.

Sprinkle with the garlic powder, if used

Bake at 170c, Mark 3 for 30 minutes. Turn the strips over and cook for another 15 minutes

Switch off oven and allow the liver to dry out (in the oven)

(8) Chicken Crunch

500g minced chicken

175g rye flour

200g wholemeal flour

200g brown rice flour

50g wheatgerm

2-3 tablespoons olive oil

1clove garlic, crushed

About 450ml chicken stock

Mix all dry ingredients

Mix in the minced chicken

Mix oil & chicken stock and blend into the dry mix

Roll out and place onto baking tray

Bake at 180c, Mark4 until golden brown. Break into pieces.

(9) Coat Conditioner (V)

Makes about 70 biscuits

500g flour

50g each of sesame seeds, linseeds, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds

100ml olive oil

2 eggs beaten

About 450ml vegetable stock

Crush the seeds**. Mix all dry ingredients, add the oil and beaten eggs. Gradually add stock until a dough is formed. Roll out and cut into shapes. Bake at 180c, mark4 until golden brown.

**The seeds must be crushed - otherwise they pass through undigested!

(10) Breath Fresheners (V)

Makes about 50-60 biscuits

500g flour

100g porridge oats

100g wheat germ

20g each of mint and parsley

About 500ml vegetable stock

Mix dry ingredients with the herbs. Gradually add stcok to form a dough. Roll out and cut into shapes. Bake at 180c , Mark 4 until golden brown.

(11) Tummy Settlers (V)

For about 60 biscuits

500g flour

250g wheatgerm

50 charcoal tablets**, crushed

2 tablespoons olive oil

About 500ml vegetable stock

Mix dry ingredients. Add the oil ,and gradually add the stock until a dough is formed. Roll out and cut into pieces. The biscuits will turn black when the stock is added!

Bake at 190c, mark5 until hard.

** available from health stores. Charcoal is good for digestive problems such as wind and gurgling tums!

(12) Chockies (V)


Makes about 50 biscuits

600g flour

500g pinhead oatmeal

4tablespoons olive oil

About 500ml water

50g doggie chocs

Mix dry ingredients with doggie chocs. Add oil and water to form a stiff dough.

Roll out and cut into shapes. Bake for about an hour at 150c ,Mark 2.

For more FREE dog treat recipes please visit :
There is no obligation.

You can also shop in our Pet Dog Store for handy items for you and your pet.