Piper the Black Lab Mix Can Tell Left From Right
The ASPCA estimates that 1.6 million dogs are rescued from animal shelters each year. Approximately 25% of dogs in animal shelters are classified as “lab-mix”. The validity of the “lab-mix” classification, however, is questionable. The general bad reputation of Rottweilers and Pit Bulls sometimes prompts shelter workers omit the possibility of rottweiler or pit bull and classify them simply as “lab-mix” in an effort to get the dogs adopted out more quickly.
It should be stated that not all rottweilers and pit bulls are aggressive or “bad”. Rhode Island residents Fred and Cindy rescued their “lab mix”, Piper in 2016 from a local shelter. Piper has a bit of a jumping problem when she’s excited to see someone, but she’s far from aggressive.
Fred and Cindy are very fortunate to have Melanie, a dog lover, for their mail carrier. The wonderful relationship that Melanie and Piper now have started when Piper was three years old, in people years. Melanie always stopped to pet or play with Piper whenever Fred or Cindy had a package. Piper began bringing a large stick to Melanie to get her to play. Melanie would refuse to wrestle the stick away. Instead, Melanie would stand there, hands on hips, saying “nope, you have to drop it. I’m not going to fight you for the stick.” This became a daily game for the pair, even when there was no package to deliver. It got to the point that whenever Piper saw Melanie drive up, she would immediately go looking for her stick to start the game.
Occasionally Piper couldn’t find her stick, so she’d get a ball. Melanie would kick the ball around precisely four times before petting Piper on the head and telling her she’d see her tomorrow.
Melanie’s route causes her to have to drive by Fred and Cindy’s house again about 20 minutes later, from the opposite direction. One day Melanie noticed that Piper’s ball had rolled into the road. She stopped her truck and got out to retrieve the ball for Piper, kicking it around four times more before leaving the neighborhood for the day. The next day the same thing happened again. And again, the next two days. Melanie was sure that Piper was doing this on purpose. Piper knew Melanie would be driving by her house again and pushed the ball into the road, so she could play some more.
Melanie realized just how incredibly smart (and lovingly manipulative) Piper was. So she started to make good use of Piper’s thinking skills! After their daily play, Melanie began training Piper. Piper already knew “sit” and “stay”. Now she would learn “left hand” and “right hand”.
It went like this:
- “Piper, sit. Good.”
- “Pick a hand” – Melanie, with a piece of dog food in her left hand.
- Piper would always pick the right hand.
- “Piper it’s never in the right hand. Pick the left hand”.
- Piper would then pick the left hand. Maybe it was the smell of the dog food causing Piper to pick the left hand, but eventually Melanie started putting a piece of dog food in each hand.
- “Piper pick the left hand”. Piper would choose correctly.
- “Piper pick the right hand”. Again, Piper chose correctly, every single time.
Labradors are commonly known to be intelligent and easy to train. Piper may or may not be all Labrador, and she may even be part Rottweiler or Pit Bull. No one knows with certainty. One thing is for sure, though, is that Piper is one brilliant dog!
A Shining Example of Weight Loss in Dogs
The growing problem of obesity is not only limited to humans. Many pets also suffer from obesity. In the United States, over 54% of dogs are obese. The United Kingdom is not far behind, with over 50% of the population of dogs are obese. In most cases, obesity amongst pets is ignored by pet owners. Some pet owners even find fat pets to be very cute and cuddly. They do not realize the dangers of obesity in pets.
For pet dogs, obesity can cause several physical and mental issues. The extra weight adds excessive stress on the joints which lead to deterioration of the carriage resulting in arthritis. Heart and breathing conditions are also linked to obesity. Fatty tumors, diabetes, skin diseases, and paralysis are just some of the most common issues faced by obese dogs. Other than health issues, the quality of life for an obese dog is negatively impacted. Their extra weight makes it difficult for them to be active and playful.
One inspiring example of a dog that was able to lose weight and regain optimum health is a Labrador from Loughborough Dogs Trust. The dog is named Mike. He lost a third of its body weight and during that process also found a new home. Taolo Terzaga provided a foster home to Mike when Mike was suffering from a hip ailment and needed a flat but soft surface for Mike to move around. Taolo’s home was perfect for Mike as it was all flat and carpeted. At first, Taolo was concerned about having such a large dog at home. Mike was also a bit bullish in the early days and Taolo was worried he might damage the house. Gradually, things changed and Mike started to settle into the home and Taolo enjoyed his company. Eventually, Taolo became very fond of the dog and decided to adopt the hefty Labrador.
Taolo Terzaga was well aware of the importance of optimum weight in pets. One of the first goals for Taolo was to make a plan to make Mike shed some of its extra weight. It is important to keep in mind that no weight loss program should start with drastic measures. For example, if a strict diet is introduced, then an exercise program should not be started simultaneously. The body should be given some time to adjust to the sudden change in calories. It is also very important to keep the weight loss program fun for the pet. If the dog finds the diet to be too strict or the exercise to be very boring, the dog will not stick the weight loss program in the long run.
Taolo started with a balanced diet for Mike and then introduced a 10-minute walk every day. The extra weight of Mike meant that even a 10-minute walk was tough to complete. Mike’s bad hip joint added to the difficulty of walking. Gradually, Mike was able to lose some weight and walking became easier. Taolo also increased the duration of the exercise. Mike showed a good ability to lose weight when introduced with proper nutrition and exercise. When Mike had arrived at the foster home, he weighed 120 pounds. After seven months of following a progressive nutrition and exercise plan, Mike has reduced his weight to 80 pounds. Other than physical improvements for Mike, his mood and energy level also improved. Now, Mike loves to chase balls and participate in all the playful activities that he enjoys. Taolo does understand the importance of continuing the good habits of having a balanced diet and regular physical activity for Mike.
Why Is This Dog Licking the Closet Door?
There is a saying that people do the darndest things. The same can be said of animals sometimes. For those who own a dog, they know this is a great way to add a little bit of responsibility also unpredictability to there every day lives. This is the story of a golden retriever who was trying to communicate with his owner and the only way that he knew how. The story instantly went viral because so many pet owners could relate to exactly what this person was going through. This dog had a very unique method of communicating that instantly got the attention of the world.
A few years ago, a story was published about a local dog. The owner of the account mentioned that her dog had a strange habit of licking things throughout the home. Specifically, this dog is obsessed with looking doors. One day, the owner stumbled upon this dog look in the closet door. In this case, there might have been food behind the door. This is one possibility that the Internet seemed to consider. If a dog smells something good behind a door, they may go and lick the door, thinking the door is what smells so good.
Another user positive the idea that perhaps the dog had a nervous habit of locking doors. They were plenty of people who have a nervous tick. For example, some people bite their nails. Dogs can do the same thing in anxious situations. For example, during a thunderstorm, it is not unusual to see a dog shaking with fear. Perhaps this dog simply had a nervous tick. Maybe this dog wanted to lick the door in an effort to calm down.
There were some people who got really creative and thought that maybe the house was made with walls that were flavored like bacon. This was certainly explain everything, but this was meant more as a joke than an actual possibility. Finally, an Internet user who really wanted to figure out what was going on and asked for more details about the puppy. The dog owner mentioned that her pet had a habit of licking different locations throughout the house. Most dog owners are going to train the animal to ask when he or she wants to go out. In this case, the dog was trained to go to the front door and sit there quietly when he wants to go out. This dog happen to interpret the command in a different way.
If this dog is actually sitting by the door quietly, he doesn’t need to go out. He simply wants to relax and hang out for a while. On the other hand, if he is sitting at the door and licking at, this is his way of saying that he wants to go out. Therefore, this dog simply had a unique routine. When he wants to go out, he travels the front door. Then, he opens his mouth, and licks the door. While some people might find this a bit strange, this dog owner found it to be adorable.
Unfortunately, the dog doesn’t realize that there is only one door in the home that leads to the outside world. The owner lives in an apartment. Therefore, he will lick any door in the house when he wants to go out. Even though the family has been living in this apartment for an extended period of time, the dog still hasn’t learned. Regardless, this is still a great story about how dogs have a unique way of looking at the world.
The Birth of the Tiniest Monkey Twins
On July 25, 2017, the world’s tiniest monkey gave birth to a set of the tiniest twins at the Chester Zoo in England. Zoo officials, spectators, and primate handlers found themselves in complete awe with the pygmy marmosets. In fact, the mother whose name is Audrey, appears just as delighted as the world around her. Visitors come from miles and countries abroad to catch a glimpse of the family trio.
When zoo staff was alerted to the birth they had a challenge finding the teensy newborns, as they weren’t so easy to spot. Weighing just over half an ounce, which translates to 15 grams per pygmy, the Chester Zoo wanted to announce and celebrate Audrey’s babies despite being big enough for staff officials to observe the twins in real time. Several weeks had to pass before they were able to allow visitors and zoo handlers to care for the twins in their habitat, they were THAT small.
The Chester Zoo primate specialists could barely see the twins until they had a few more weeks to grow. It was their mother Audrey who gave zoo staff officials the heads up that she had two newbies to care for in her pygmy habitat. Now the father, Gumi, is oftentimes seen carrying the babies on his back, yet it’s been Audrey’s role to be primary caretaker and feed the twins around the clock.
Because this species of monkeys, the pygmy marmoset, has been threatened around the globe due to the pet trade and habitat loss, both Gumi and Audrey are a happy couple to be spending their moments at the Chester Zoo in England. Being new parents only adds to their bliss while the zoo gains more attraction of visitors due to the rare birth.
Since each baby equates to about 10 percent of Audrey’s body weight, she is an around-the-clock feeding machine. She typically cares for the twins and feeds them without much fanfare, yet zoo visitors might have to rubberneck in the habitat environment to actually witness her caretaking. Audrey and Gumi are both highly protective of their newborns, and knowing that onlookers are curious and excited, they have to go the extra mile to ensure each pygmy baby is safe and sound.
Whenever a baby is born at the Chester Zoo, it’s something to gravitate towards, as it’s considered one of the best in the country. They want to make certain each visitor has an unforgettable experience with the vast array of animals on their extensive property. The zoo staff and officials take great pride in the species they have on board by offering each acres of habitat that replicates what they’re used to in the wild. It’s been a working and harmonious organization since 1931, as the zoo also provides educational and inspirational tours for children and adults alike.
We suspect Audrey and Gumi will raise their tiny twins with love and affection for as long as they are children and needing their parents. Pygmy marmosets are extremely social beings and family-oriented. They hold on to their young ones for years, and with both tiny twins requiring extra attention given their size, it’s only a matter of time before they create teeny babies of their own.
Let’s celebrate Audrey, Gumi, and the new tiny twins to this Earth!
Norris the Tiny Piglet Captures Hearts
Imagine being a policeman and stumbling upon a tiny piglet while doing rounds in the Commercial Township of New Jersey. That’s exactly what happened to a car of two state troopers who found the adorable oink animal wandering the streets lost and confused.
Not one to sidestep any efforts in helping the cause, the state trooper scooped up the piglet and began searching for his rightful owner. As an officer who is familiar with farm animals, he brought the little guy home to make certain he was out of harm’s way. The kind policeman named him Norris. It felt unique and perfect for the intelligent creature.
Norris is a piglet with magical qualities. Besides capturing the hearts of the state troopers, he’s also been one to allure the community into understanding how essential piglets are to families and farms. It’s a joy to watch him walk around the neighborhood with his tiny feet, curly tail, and loveable eyes. One can’t help but want to hold him, spend time with him, and pretend he belongs to them for a day.
At first, the troopers wanted to search for the family who lost Norris, yet once one cop decided to take him home to cuddle him and keep him safe, the Cumberland County police station had a visitor from the farmer who ended up looking for the pint-sized piglet at the same time. He walked in and realized how kind the troopers were to hold his Norris in proper custody that he gave them a small reward of “whenever you want to visit with Norris, or have him come to the station to spread his joy he’s always there for you.”
Those were music to the ears of the on-duty and off-duty police officers in Commercial Township. Since they’re always responding to crime and drama in the community, it’s a blessing to have a different type of interaction that involves one of nature’s own. Safe to say that Norris is the little piggy who cried “wee wee wee all the way home!”
Whenever Norris is out and about at his home and farm, all eyes are now ready to watch for his moves and whereabouts. He has the charm that melts hearts and brings happiness to whomever he meets. His family is as gracious and wonderful as Norris, thus it’s no wonder he comes from a loving environment and can show others how to feel good and peaceful as well.
A truly wonderful ending to this story is how Norris made the cutest squeaky piglet sounds when leaving the police station with his farmer guardian. Almost as if he was saying goodbye and thank you to his saviors. As grateful as Norris and his family are that he’s home safe and sound, they’re also willing to show you their other farm animals, and the delightful cozy pen Norris gets to call his own.
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