Pup links!

Metropolitan Opera's tenor Lauritz Melchior with his wife and their Great Dane, April 1944. Source: LIFE Magazine Archives.

Dog-related links from around the Web this past week:

Paying the Price of a Fat Pet. Just another friendly reminder: Don’t let your pets gets overweight. For their sakes and for your wallet’s sake! (Well Pets, the New York Times)

The Crazy Ones Are Always Beautiful. On loving one’s German shepherd, even though she’s a handful. (Especially compared with those genteel greyhounds…) (Tales and Tails)

Don’t Let Your Leash Hold You Back. Tena shares some advice on how we humans are particularly prone to misuse leashes in training sessions. Good reminders! (Success Just Clicks)

Why Tyler Is My Dog. Moira just adopted this handsome boy, and she finds that they have something in common. Too sweet. (Dog Art Today)

Black-and-White French Film Takes You Inside a Cat’s Daily Torment. OK, this has nothing to do with dogs, but I think it is hilarious and that most cats probably have a similar internal dialogue. (Best Week Ever)

Cute but stupid

This photo is actually from Christmas, but it's the same park and the same dogs, so I'm using it here.

I went to visit my family this weekend, for an early birthday celebration for my dad and to surprise my siblings. It was a beautiful few days and on Saturday, we went back to the big, open park nearby and took Dublin and Dally with us. (Photo above gives an approximation of what the day was like, even though the photo is from Christmas. Same dogs, same park, mostly the same people.)

The dogs were off-leash most of the time and stuck with us through all the trails. Dublin is very responsive, especially to my father and to her human, Dave; Dally, not so much. We shared the trail with sporadic mountain bikers and when we’d call Dublin to get off the trail, she’d do so immediately; when we’d call at Dally or gesture at her, she just stood there dumbly, staring at us. Dally is only 8 or 9 months old and she hasn’t been trained by her family at all, so I suppose this isn’t really surprising.

When Dublin spotted the creek, she went scrambling down a large embankment and splashed around the water. Dally tried to follow her, but since she’s overweight and clumsy, it didn’t go so smoothly. She ended up getting trapped in a huge vat of quicksand-like mud and Dave had to help drag her out of it. As my dad likes to say of dogs like her: “Cute but stupid!” After she emerged, she looked like a sad, shamed princess; she couldn’t even wag her tail, as it was so weighed down with mud. Poor baby. We hosed her down when we got home and she was no worse for the wear.

Side note: Is it ever appropriate to tell someone that their dog is overweight? Especially if they seem unaware of it? Dally is young, as I mentioned, but the poor girl already has a weight problem. I think she needs to lose 15 pounds or more; it’s noticeable, and even more so since I last saw her in December. Is that ever appropriate, do you think? If so, is there a gentle way to say it?