All we know about him is that they say he is a 10-month-old male who was picked up as a stray in the countryside. And that’s it!
I always get pretty nervous when we bring in a new foster, mainly because of all the unknowns — what if he’s dog aggressive? What if Pyrrha hates him? What if he’s a constant barker? Or destructive? etc. — but it always works out, and my husband is a great mood equalizer. Thankfully, my leg of the transport isn’t too long, so I’m hoping he’s not extra rowdy, since I am unable to fit a crate in my car. I got a seatbelt-hooking harness for him… here’s to hoping that will hold!
We also get the fun task of renaming him, a job that I always love. (His shelter name is “Mel,” which is plainly awful.)
Here are the top contenders:
Which name do you like best? What would you name him?
(Obviously, we’ll probably pick a totally different name upon meeting him! Have to see them first. We were going to name Pyrrha “Inez,” but after meeting her, we knew that just wasn’t going to fit her look and temperament.)
The Problem with Packs. Why the “pack mentality” for dogs is increasingly out of vogue. If we’re not pack leaders, then, what do we call ourselves? Pet parents? I like this blogger’s suggestion of being a “camp counselor” for her dogs. (Fearful Dogs’ Blog)
Horse and Dog Play Together Beautifully. This is so sweet and heartwarming. Inter-species friends are probably my all-time favorite phenomenon, and these two look like they may be Best Friends Forever. (Pawesome)
Can the Bulldog Be Saved? As with many of you, I was very pleased to see this comprehensive article published last week in the New York Times Magazine. I’ve already shared some of my thoughts on why I feel that breeding bulldogs is unethical and inhumane, but this article really takes it to the next level. An illuminating quote from the article:
“The bulldog is unique for the sheer breadth of its health problems,” says Brian Adams, formerly the head of media-relations at M.S.P.C.A.-Angell Animal Medical Center in Boston. “A typical breed will have one or two common problem areas. The bulldog has so many. When I first started working at Angell, the joke was that these dogs are a $5,000 check just waiting to happen. But the joke gets old fast, because many of these dogs are suffering.”
[Dr. Sandra] Sawchuk is the rare veterinarian who owns a bulldog. “I should know better, but I’m a sucker for this breed,” she told me. “I’m also a vet, so I feel I can handle any problems that come up. But if anyone else tells me they want a bulldog, my immediate response is, ‘No, you don’t.’ ”
This piece also highlights the considerable villainy of the AKC, which refuses to ask the Bulldog Club of America to revise its standard for the breed. Why? Because bulldogs are popular these days, having skyrocketed to the no. 6 most popular purebreed in the United States. It’s all about the money and the registrations for them. Who cares if we’re killing these dogs by insane breeding practices? I’m just hopeful that many people–aside from those of us who already believe that breeding the modern bulldog is inhumane–will read this article and reconsider bringing a bulldog puppy home. (NYT Magazine)
The Art and Science of Naming a Dog. I love meeting well-named dogs and I think names are very important. Stanley Coren reflects on the psychological aspects of naming our canines. (Psychology Today)
A Different Kind of Dog Rescue. This place looks magical. This is definitely what I would do with my life if my husband weren’t around to keep me from being a borderline animal hoarder. (Although this woman sounds amazing and is not a hoarder.) (Love and a Leash)
Three Levels of Pet Safety. Engraved tag, BlanketID, and microchip! I didn’t know how BlanketID worked, but it sounds like a pretty cool device. Does anyone have one for their dogs? (Go Pet Friendly)
Corgi Owners. A funny note with regard to the blessedness of being a corgi person. (Dogblog)
A lot of great dog-related links from around the Web this week!
Dogs of Darjeeling. This is the best pup link I’ve seen yet: My sister’s amazing and beautiful photographs of the dogs she saw while she was living in and around Darjeeling, India. So striking! The photos make me remember that, regardless of where in the world you are, dogs are still dogs. It’s perhaps a silly thing to think, but I an enamored with this collection of her photography. Check it out. (Como Say What?)
Why Dog Women Get More Respect than Cat Ladies. An interesting article on Slate this week about why it’s easier to be taken seriously if you’re a crazy dog lady instead of a crazy cat lady. Not fair, of course, but a curious cultural phenomenon, perhaps. (Slate)
Don’t Like Your New Dog’s Name? Karen London gives some practical tips on changing your adopted dog’s name. I feel pretty sure that I will want to rename our future dog, and so this is a helpful thing to think about. What about you? Did you change your dog’s name? (The Bark)
Corgis are the pint-sized members of the herding group, my favorite breed category in the AKC. Corgis come in two flavors: the Pembroke Welsh corgi and the Cardigan Welsh corgi. Pembrokes typically come in the fawn and sable variety (like the sassy Pembroke in the photo above) and have docked tails. Cardigans are slightly bigger and have tails; Cardigans may also come in a wider range of colors, like the tricolor puppy in the photo below.
Queen Elizabeth II is largely responsible for the popularization of this spirited little breed in the 20th and 21st centuries. She grew up with corgis and continues to keep them today. I also think she has a great collection of names for them; Myth and Fable were two of her corgis and I think those are great dog names.
Like most herding breeds, corgis are known for being snappy and vocal. They are quick-witted and easily trained. And despite their short legs, many corgis also excel at agility.
Many people who are fond of the bigger herding breeds often pick up a corgi along the way. Corgis pack a lot of dog into a little body. I’m certainly open to the idea of a corgi at this point, but they admittedly rank below some of the other breeds in my mind right now.