Vol. 10, No. 13 – March 29 – April 11, 2017 – Professor Scamp PhD

•   I think that something bad is happening to me that I want to share. A few weeks ago, I started coughing, lost my appetite (I love eating) and became very lethargic. About a week ago I was in my backyard and collapsed. My family took me in the house and set me on the bed – they seemed very concerned.

They took me to this nice lady that I go to see sometimes. Usually she sits on the floor with me and we play a little bit. This time she set me right onto the table. She poked me all over and even smelled my ears and mouth and put a round metal thing all over me listening to my heart and lungs.

She then told mom and dad that I have a congestive heart failure (I have always has a heart murmur).

As she explained what this meant to them, they looked as if they were going to cry. She told them “no more walks or running, just keep him as comfortable as possible.”

She gave them three pills for me to take. The two little ones are no problem, but the bigger one that I could normally eat with my food is tough because I’m not eating much. So mom has to try to get it in my mouth and get it to go down.

I’ve enjoyed writing to you all these years, and hope I still can for a few more months at least.

By the way, the nice lady is Marianne Regnier, DVM at Ventura Veterinary Hospital.

•   A dog food product sold nationwide is being recalled due to a potential health risk.

Blue Buffalo Company voluntarily recalled some of its BLUE Wilderness Rocky Mountain Recipe Red Meat Dinner Wet Food for Adult Dogs. The company says the product could have elevated levels of beef thyroid hormones.

Ingesting high levels of beef thyroid hormones could cause weight loss, increase heart rate, restlessness and increased thirst and urination in dogs. Long-term effects include vomiting, diarrhea and rapid or difficult breathing.

The FDA says it has taken one report of a dog showing symptoms. That dog has now fully recovered.

The affected products have the UPC code 840243101153 and a best by date of June 7, 2019. If you have the product at home, the FDA says to stop feeding it to your pet, and contact your veterinarian.

For more information on the recall, visit the Blue Buffalo website.

•   Even though most everybody loves cute animals (especially dogs)some bosses still don’t understand why they should be in the work place.

Fearing  litigation from  allergy sufferers,  personal injury claims to those that just don’t like animals (hard to believe) are just some of the reasons  that company leaders might be skeptical of joining the dog-friendly office trend.

Is there a way to persuade him or her to allow pets to hang out with you at work?

Maybe this will help. New research from Central Michigan University offers a reason for dog-friendly offices.

The study had groups complete short tasks that involve creativity and cooperation, such as coming up with a fictional 15-second ad, and see how having a dog present for the experiment affects outcomes.

It seems that dogs are great for collaboration. Both the participants themselves and outside experts who rated the videotaped tasks said that adding a dog to the mix made people more trusting and more helpful. In short, just having a dog around seems to do wonders for teamwork.

“When people work in teams, the presence of a dog seems to act as a social lubricant,” said lead author Steve Colarelli . “Dogs seem to be beneficial to the social interactions of teams.”

Why do dogs have such wonderful impact on how we treat each other? The answer offered by the researchers will come as no surprise to most pet owners–it seems that having animals nearby just makes us happier, and people who feel better tend to be nicer.

So if your boss is not sold on opening your office to canine companions, you might want to show him this study. And if you need to apply a little more pressure, earlier research showing that dogs also reduce stress, or this useful post from my Inc.com colleague Christine Lagorio-Chafkin on overcoming objections to dog-friendly offices might also be helpful. My boss even lets me sleep with him.

•   There are a few new state laws regarding animals that I would like to share with you:

“As long as you call authorities first you won’t be held legally liable for breaking into a car with an animal trapped in the car in heat or cold .”  Not sure what authorities need to be called so this may be more symbolic than anything else.  And how the authorities decide if breaking in is warranted?

“Dog kennels and pet hotels (I would like to stay in a hotel if they serve food) must check on animals once each day (is that enough?) and provide elevated platforms for cat and enclosures.” What? Why do cats get such special privileges? Savana never even wags her tail.

“Carbon monoxide gas chambers are banned in animal shelters for killing animals .” Shouldn’t all forms be banned? Why just this method?

“A dog involved in criminal fighting will no longer  automatically be labeled “vicious “which leads to it being killed .  These dogs will be evaluated to see whether it can be rehabilitated to safely reenter society or be placed in a facility.”  I think those who present criminal fighting should automatically be labeled “vicious “which leads to them being killed.

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