Archives for November, 2012

The Dog Lived (and So Will I) book review

Hello to Everyone,

The book The Dog Lived (and So Will I), by Teresa J. Rhyne, is the true account of her dog, Seamus (pronounced Shaymus), and then Teresa herself going through the horrors of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation (cut, poison, and burn) treatments for malignant, aggressive cancerous tumors.

Teresa recently had: lost her two elderly beagles, Richelieu and Roxy, been divorced for a second time, and moved to a new home. She had a lot of baggage. So, she had no intention of becoming involved with another beagle, or much less another man. However, things have a way of happening in an unplanned manner. She met Chris, a younger man who despite her intentions to the contrary, captured her affections. She received a call from a local animal rescue organization who suggested she “just come in for a look” at a newly acquired young beagle. At the shelter, this canine immediately attached himself to her and she found herself with a new family member in this sweet and adorable, yet demanding dog. She named him Seamus.

Besides having an insatiable appetite for human contact, Seamus had an insatiable appetite for food of any sort. Despite his shortcomings, Seamus was a beloved companion. So, it was devastating news when Teresa was told Seamus had a particularly aggressive cancerous tumor, and would only live another year. Teresa invested all of her emotional and financial resources into fighting Seamus’s cancer, and just about lost him in the process, but he survived both the cancer and the treatments.

She didn’t realize that Seamus had prepared her to wage her own war against cancer. Shortly after Seamus had received a clean bill of health, she found the lump in her breast. She was immediately scheduled for surgery, and went through her own series of chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

With Chris’s love and care, Seamus as a source of laughter and entertainment with his endless demands, and support from unexpected places Teresa has received her own clean bill of health.

The Dog Lived (and So Will I) is uplifting, humorous, and easy to read despite the honest depiction of what it is like to go through both cancer and it’s conventional treatments. Teresa J. Rhyne has written an encouraging and inspirational story I think both animal lovers and cancer survivors will appreciate and enjoy.

I hope everyone enjoyed their Thanksgiving holiday and did not suffer too much of a food coma!


In full disclosure, if you choose to purchase The Dog Lived (and So Will I) through any of the links I have provided, I will receive an affiliate commission from

Nov 23, 2012 | Comments are off | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Holistic, Home Health Care for Dogs

5 Essential Thanksgiving Safety Tips

Hi Everyone,

Thanksgiving Day is only two days away!

Here are some Thanksgiving Day safety tips written by Steve Appelbaum and published by Tails Magazine in Home about keeping our pets safe:

5 Essential Thanksgiving Safety Tips
November 16, 2012 by Tails Magazine in Home, Newsletter, Wellness with 1 Comment

If you’ve ever turned your back for a second only to find your dog happily helping herself to a Thanksgiving treat (or three), you know that our canine companions have an affinity for being a little extra naughty when it comes to the holiday season. Luckily, Steve Appelbaum, president of the Animal Behavior College, shared with us these 5 important safety tips:

1. Food: What’s good for us isn’t always good for our pooch. Although your dog might look at you with eyes that suggest starvation is imminent, a big piece of turkey can cause more harm than good. Turkey skin is usually too greasy and fatty for your dog and might cause diarrhea and/or an upset stomach. In some instances, particularly with older dogs, this can even cause or exacerbate Pancreatitis. Turkey bones can splinter and cause real medical problems. Additionally, raw or undercooked turkey can contain Salmonella, which is as toxic for dogs as it is for you.

Most people know that chocolate is something to keep away from dogs, but how many of you are aware that onions and garlic are also potentially dangerous to your pet? They both contain sulfides, which can cause anemia in some dogs. Walnuts, mushrooms and macadamia nuts are also on the forbidden list, as is nutmeg, which can actually be quite deadly.

2. Foil and plastic: Aluminum foil and plastic wrap are wonderful modern tools for helping store leftovers. However, dogs have been known to…gasp…steal leftovers and consume them with the foil and/or wrap still on them. So be aware and careful about where you put things.

3. Children and other guests. If your dog isn’t used to being around a lot of people, especially young kids, and you plan on having guests over for Thanksgiving, spend some time prior to the holidays getting the dog used to being in a crowd. Take your dog somewhere that people frequent and, standing far enough away that the dog isn’t stressed, feed and praise the dog for her calm behavior. If you do this for a week or two, your dog should be much more comfortable around people. If you have real concerns about the dog’s ability to interact, contact a professional trainer.

Additionally, many trainers suggest keeping your dog on a leash when she greets holiday guests. Although this might be a bit inconvenient, it will allow you to restrict your dog from jumping and possibly scaring guests. Once everyone has arrived and the dog is calm you can probably take her off the leash. Remember to never leave a dog on a leash unattended.

4. Sanctuary. Consider giving your dog a quiet place where she can retreat if things get too loud or intense for her. A spare room, the garage, anywhere that is away from the flow of traffic and, of course, safe.

5. Training. Although it might be a bit late to train your dog to listen (or listen better) to obedience commands in time for Thanksgiving, it is still important. And other holidays are right around the corner! Think about it: The more your dog listens, the easier she will be to control around guests and other distractions. Balanced approaches to training are best, as you want a pet that learns positively. Get the rest of the family involved as well, as these skills will benefit everybody well beyond the holiday season.

Teach your dog not to run out of doors or gates as these might be left open more often during the holidays. Basic boundary training is an essential part of any dog training program.

Finally, make sure that your dog wears tags just in case she gets out during this or any other times. All dogs should be microchipped, too.

By taking these simple, important precautions, the holidays can be a wonderful time for everyone, including your furry friends!

Steve Appelbaum is the president of Animal Behavior College, the largest animal career vocational school of its kind in North America. He has been a professional dog trainer for over 30 years and is a published author, lecturer, and animal podcast co-host.
The way we keep Roxie and Gypsy safe is to leave them at home! We are spending Thanksgiving Day at Rick’s sister’s house, so Roxie and Gypsy will have some extra nap time while we are away.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your dogs,


Nov 20, 2012 | Comments are off | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Home Health Care for Dogs

Thank you for your service!

To both retired and active duty members of our military, human and canine alike, thank you for your service!

Nov 11, 2012 | Comments are off | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior