Friday, December 14, 2012

Tomorrow at the AZ StateVeteran Home

Tomorrow I will have a busy afternoon because I was invited to a special event at the Arizona State Veteran Home.  It serves the long termcare and rehabilitative needs of the veterans of Arizona.

I think I was invited because of my salute.  You can see it in this little video.  Facebook wouldn't allow me to post it because of copyright rules.

Monday, December 10, 2012

My Scary Morning Walk

First of all I am going to start with advice.  I usually give this last, but not today.

1.  All dog owners should teach their pets a few basic commands and teach it over and over and over until they know that their pet will respond as if their lives depended on it.  SIT - it saved me this morning!

2.  Teach an emergency recall that your pet knows that you mean business.  Practice this one with the best treat rewards possible:  Mine is "ZOE HERE!"  That saved me from being lost once, and it would have helped the owners with their runaway lab this morning.  It would have saved my mom and me from major stress this morning, too.

Ok, so here is what happened.  We just came out the front door, and I was on my leash and went to my favorite bush where I sniff and well you know.....piddle... in the morning.  As I was  mid-stream, so to speak, I was pounced on by this charging black lab.  Mom grabbed his collar to separate him from me ( his name is Jack as we learned later). I pulled on my leach, jumped sideways and went to mom's other side as he kept pulling and jumping.  She told me, "Zoe, SIT" and I did.  I don't think I ever dropped my bottom so fast.

Mom was struggling to keep the lab from me; she could tell he was friendly because there was no aggression---he was just BIG and out of control!!!  Then the trash collector stopped his truck, got out and offered to help us.  He asked if we were okay .  He took the lab by the collar and mom checked to see if I was hurt.  I wasn't, but I was still shaking and scared.  I was told to sit again and I did.  Then he asked, if the lab was ours, when mom told him no, he let the collar go and the lab took off toward 60th Street which is busy in the morning because there is a grade school drop off there.

Then just as the lab took off, a boy and his dad came from around the far corner running down my street yelling "Jack, STOP"  But, Jack just kept running.  He turned the corner. He was chased  by the boy and his dad.  What they didn't see, but I did, was that Jack had also crossed the street and was already in the school parking lot;  the boy and his dad were going the wrong direction!

 My mom knew that Jack would probably come to me if we crossed the street and called to him.  Guess what?  Jack couldn't get to me fast enough.  This time we knew he was coming, so we weren't scared.  Mom grabbed his collar and started calling to the man and his son  who were now a block away.  They heard us and came back.  The boy put Jack on a leash, and they started to walk home.  We continued on our walk, a little shaken up, but glad that we did a good deed with Jack.

I sure hope that they teach Jack an emergency recall and also are more careful when they open a door since they knew that Jack was  what the dad called a "bolter".

It all  ended fine and I got a new Christmas harness.  Here is the picture of me in it!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

A Star Is Born!

Hi Everyone,

I had a very busy day today.  At the Life Care Center of Scottsdale, I was involved in video taping a segment for City Cable 11.  It's hard work being a star!  I will tell you more about it another time because I am really tired.  It took 2 1/2 hours for a segment that will probably only be 5 minutes.  Oh well,  that's the price for fame and stardom!

I did want to tell you about two new friends I met on Facebook today.  They are both remarkable therapy dogs,  Jake -who lost a paw in an accident and Duchess -who is blind.  They are such an inspiration to me.  I will share more about them after I get to know them better.

I am going to rest now.....have a great night!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Season for Sharing

 On yesterday's front page of The Arizona Republic, there was a wonderful story by my favorite columnist, Scott Craven.  He is a real animal lover and writes about us and our needs every week.  You should read his columns on a regular basis, I do.

As most of you know, this is the official "Season for Sharing"  because of the holidays, but it is an actual program here in Arizona, and one of the charities that is part of this year's program made possible through The Arizona Republic, 12 News and the Gannett Foundation is Gabriel's Angels.  It is a wonderful organization that uses therapeutic pooches like me.  Over the past 12 years my canine friends and their human companions have "visited more than 13,000children who have been abused, neglected and at risk kids who have learned a little something about love and caring from dogs just as magical as the gray pooch that started it all ( Gabriel)." 

You should read Scott's article and maybe you will want to help.  Or better yet, if your city doe not have a group like this, you might consider starting one!  That's all for today!


Monday, November 26, 2012

Pictures with Santa at Petique

 On Saturday, I went to the Biltmore Fashion Park and had my picture taken with Santa, but first I went out to lunch with my mom and my Aunt Linda.  We went to Zinburger; it's a Fox restaurant, and they said their food was excellent.  I wouldn't know because I only eat dog food, but the nice waiter did bring me some water. Here are my pictures from that day. Santa was inside Petique; it's the adoption center and store operated by the Arizona Humane Society at the shopping center.  It was a fun day of meeting people and especially fun when I did my tricks for Santa and his elves.

Here I am waiting patiently to go into Petique.

The photographer liked taking my picture because I was so well behaved
Here I am with Santa!

Here is some Zoe advice:
  • Be patient during the holidays if you are out shopping.
  • Bring water for your pet even if it is winter.
  • Be nice!  Santa is watching....

Monday, November 19, 2012

My Face on an E-card with Petzooba

 Hi Everyone!

Today I had a very busy day at the Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center.  I never saw such a myriad ( wow- good vocabulary word)  patients in the different infusion rooms as I did today.  One lady was from Paris and she talked to me in French; I liked her.  Another lady liked me so much she even took my picture with her phone to show her children when she got home.  Here is the picture she emailed to my mom.  Isn't technology wonderful?

Tonight, while I was on the computer, I found the link to the man who came up with the idea for the card that I am on; his name is Mitch Wilder.  If you click on his name, it will take you directly to a video of the card that my face (along with many other dogs) is on.  I am the violinist (the cute one) who hangs on the conductor's baton.  Take a look!  The website for the card is Petzooba , and they have a plethora (another good vocabulary word!) of different cards.  You can even personalize some of them.

That's all for tonight --no advice either!  I have to go and read some more of my hero Uggie's book - Uggie:  My Story.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

What I Do on a Pet Therapy Visit!

Here I am in my Therapy Dogs, Inc vest. 

Some of you have asked what exactly is it that I do as a therapy dog.  Well, I asked my "mom" to take a few pictures and put together a video/slide show, so you could get an idea of my day. Ther won't be any patients' pictures in here because I don't want to violate HIPA laws. This was from last Monday, November 12th, when I was visiting in my red, white and blue outfit because we were celebrating our veterans.  Normally, I wear one of my therapy vests depending on where I am "working".  That day I visited with 68 people because I went to two places; I usually visit only one.  I was super tired when I got home

Saturday, November 10, 2012

My Salute to Veterans - Human and Canine!

I was busy for the past few days getting my costume ready, taking pictures, attending an Open House and making my video salute to veterans - human and canine.  I hope that you like it!

Monday, November 5, 2012

I Won! I Won!

I want to thank all my friends for voting for me this past weekend.  Ruby Ranch Rescue and Sanctuary had a contest on Facebook; it ended at 6:00 PM on Sunday, November 4th and I won the popular vote!  I am quite excited about that.

So, my costume is put away.  I gave out all of my stickers and today I went to the vet.  It was a good experience;  I even showed him all my tricks.  I think he doubted my ability to do them in the animal hospital because he said most dogs are just too scared and don't do anything but pant, shake and shiver.  But, he never met me before!!!

 I did find out that I have two laxating patellas; but it's level 1!  That means I don't have to worry about it just yet.  He said it was genetic and that it is not uncommon in small breeds especially in dachshunds and chihuahuas  ---so, I guess it is part of my ancestry because my DNA doesn't lie.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Reading the Arizona Republic and Scott Craven

Like my mom,  I like to read what she calls "the little paper" --- it lets me know what events are going on in the city and  what's more important are the articles by Scott Craven, who writes a column about pets called Pet Tales.  Besides being informative, he knows the power of 3 in journalism and sometimes he is pretty funny, too.

I feel that I can really relate to his column today called "Dog owners agree puppy love has power to take away stress".  Mr. Craven sites some interesting statistics from findings of a survey taken by Purina Dog Chow.  Well, I was not consulted for his article, but can speak personally on this subject with authority because of  my therapy work.  Just this week, I had 3 patients smile and tell me, "You made my day!" as they scratched my ears!  One of them even called me cutie pie.  Another lady came and sought me out to visit her husband in a private infusion room because he needed my unconditional love and attention.  She heard I did tricks, too - especially my salute - and he served in the military.  SO, I did my thing and guess what?  he was smiling and thanking me before I left him. It makes me happy to spread such good will and cheer.

My advice for today:
Always read Scott Craven's articles.
Remember how important pets can be to your good health.

PS  Mr. Craven, it would be okay with me if you chose to change Pet Tales to "Tails"  to have a play on that word just like I did!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Chocolate Warning!

Last Halloween, my first, was memorable not only because I wore my costume to the care center and gave out truffles and sugar free See's candy to my patients and therapists, but also because of what I did later that night!  You see, there were 6 truffles and 8 pieces of sugar free chocolate remaining in my mom's zipped purse which was left on the dining room chair.  Being the smart dog that I am, I knew excatly what was in there and I WANTED  that chocolate - all of it - even the sugar free, which we found out later is even more dangerous for dogs than regular chocolate.

So, I waited until my pet parents were asleep; I got out of bed and went to work!  I dragged the purse from the chair into the hallway by the front door.  I figured no one could hear me there if I made noise.  I worked very hard at unzipping the purse, unwrapping the chocolate and eating every last piece!  Then, I carefully and silently, returned to bed. I sleep with my pet parents! 

Little did I know that I would be very sick in a few hours, and you just can't be sick quietly!  So, I was caught.  I wasn't scolded, but I could tell there was disappointment in my mom's face and fear as she quickly called the emergency vet  in Scottsdale.  Then there was a call to the poison control, and I was rushed to the emergency clinic where they gave me an IV (ouch!) and different treatments monitoring my vitals, as they called it, every 30 minutes for next 24 hours all because I ate chocolate!  It was yummy going down but not so yummy coming up and out.  Plus, I was cold, my temperature dropped and I was scared!!!!

So, my advice for today - pet parents - do not leave any candy, especially chocolate, within a sniff of your pet.  We do not know it is harmful to us.  And guess what, even if we do eat it, get sick and have to go to the vet, we will do it again.  I know because I had two such trips ( Halloween and Valentine's Day)

PS - My mom said to tell all of you that it was very expensive, too.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Getting my teeth brushed!

A few days ago I told you that I would write about the importance of taking care of your pet's teeth.  Well, you brush and floss daily, right?  Okay, okay, maybe you don't always floss....but you do brush!!!  It is important that your pet's teeth get brushed as well because we get tartar and plaque just like humans. So, start just by putting your finger in your pet's mouth to get used to a sort of  "gums massage",  then gradually introduce a type of brushing device; they come in all sorts of sizes and shapes. I have graduated to a oral care finger brush (It looks like a rubber finger tip bankers use to count money.). Do I like it , well no, but I bet you don't like brushing or flossing either! I am going to ask my favorite dentist, Dr. Chris Visser  if I should now start using an actual brush!  What do you think, Dr. Chris?

Here is something else that helps in pet dental care; pet parents should purchase products to keep your pearly whites as pearly as they can be, like Greenies (one of my favorite treats).  They even come in various sizes and for different age groups, too - from puppy to senior. I have the Tiny Lite version, so I can keep my weight just perfect!!!

It is a good idea to check for the seal of approval of The Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) to see if your food and treats benefit oral pet care, too. When they endorse a product, they award it their seal of approval. Go to their site and you will see a picture of what can happen if you don't take care of your teeth.  I was going to  put the picture here, but severe periodontal disease is too awful!

I learned all of this from Dr. Visser and his staff at Arizona Veterinary Specialists in Scottsdale.  You should check out his website, and if you go there, tell them that Zoe says, "Hi"....oh and you can see ME on their website, too.

Today's advice is already in my blog, but there will be more dental advice in the future. Here is the seal that you should be looking for: