A table meant for dogs

{Billy, from design*sponge}
(c) Design Sponge.

“The only food he has ever stolen has been down on a coffee table. He claims that he genuinely believed it to be a table meant for dogs.”

— Jean Little

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In the aftermath of the Thanksgiving holiday here in the United States: Do you have to worry about your dogs stealing food from low places? Ours are incorrigible thieves and would snatch any opportunity to grab food if left unattended. But I have met some extremely self-controlled dogs who wouldn’t dare nibble from a cheese plate on a low table. They astound me.

What about your pups? Pinnacle of politeness or perpetual pilferer?

Pup links!

Audrey Hepburn and her Yorkshire terrier. Click for source.

Dog-related links from around the Web this week:

Careers in Behavior and Training. Like many of you, I suspect, I’ve daydreamed about quitting my job and becoming a full-time dog… person? Karen London, who did just that, shares some of her wisdom about careers in canine behavior and training. (The Bark blog)

In France, the (Abandoned) Dog Days of Summer. I admire a lot about French culture, but this is really appalling: Apparently, an estimated 100,000 dogs are simply abandoned every year by their French owners when they take their long summer holidays. The French SPCA comments on their campaign to end this practice. France has the highest numbers of pet ownership in all of Europe; you’d think this wouldn’t be an issue there. Big sigh. (NPR)

Police Dog “Bono” Plays by Own Rules, Plants Drug Evidence at Nearly Every Crime Scene. So, this is actually a big problem, and I’m surprised I haven’t read about it more before: Police dogs read their handlers so well that they generate an unfortunate amount of false positives when sniffing for illegal substances. How do we fix this egregious problem? Anyone heard of this phenomenon before? (Reason)

Hearing in Colors: Your Dog’s Coat Color Predicts His Hearing Ability. Stanley Coren, the popular canine psychologist, discusses research on how coat patterns and colors relate to hearing ability. This doesn’t break it down so far as to say that black dogs hear better than brown ones, but the research affirms the fact that primarily white or merled or piebald dogs do not hear as well or are more likely to suffer from hearing loss. (Psychology Today)

Fast and Furry-ous: Flyballin’. These are such great photos; the dogs look like they are having a blast! You can feel the energy and excitement. (Identity: V+E)

Reflections. OK, no dogs in this one, but this just made me giggle, particularly the photo with the whole crowd of sheep staring at their reflections. Really puts an image to the cliche “herd mentality.” (BCxFour)

The Benefits of Pet Ownership for Children. As a child who pestered her parents constantly for a pet, I’ll add a hearty amen to this article. Some great research cited here, too. (AAHA Healthy Pet Blog)

Pawsitively Amazing: Kiya. These sweet photos of this disabled German shepherd actually brought tears to my eyes. What is it about disabled dogs that is so gut-wrenching and inspiring? Probably because they don’t seem to worry at all and still have such light and joy in their eyes. It will get me every time. Kiya looks like such a doll, too. (The Daily Dog Tag)

Not so much breed love

dachshund
This is Katie, my Denver landlord's anxious dachshund. Source: Me

As I’m thinking about the dogs that I’d love to have one day, I’m also making a mental list of the dogs I know I wouldn’t enjoy living with. As Stanley Coren points out in his book Why We Love the Dogs We Do, not every human personality is suited to every breed personality. There does seem to be a innate, temperamental reason why some people keep buying golden retrievers or Boston terriers or akitas again and again.

I don’t make this list to say that certain breeds are bad or unlovable, but rather that my personality is not especially keen on their personalities–and I just don’t think we’d live well together.

Yorkshire terrier ♥
A Yorkshire terrier. I add them noting an exception, my friend Emily's giant Yorkie, Oscar, who is precious. Source: Flickr, click photo to see user page.

That said, here is a list of the breeds I’m fairly certain I have no interest in ever owning…

  • Dachshunds.
  • All terriers. Yes, all.
  • Almost all toy breeds (Exceptions: papillon, pomeranian, Cavalier King Charles spaniel).
  • All brachycephalic breeds (pugs, bulldogs, pekingese, etc.).
  • All scent hounds.
  • Dalmatians.
  • Chows.
  • Labs. I KNOW. So un-American! I just don’t love labs. There it is.

What about you? Any breeds you’re pretty sure you don’t want?