Intro: The World’s Oldest Dogs
Guinness World records thought they had found the world’s oldest dog when they discovered a chihuahua named TobyKeith living in Florida with his owner, Gisela Shore. The little dog was 21 years and 66 days old.
Gisela was thrilled to have her dog named the oldest dog in the world. She adopted him in 2001 when he was just a tiny puppy. He lives with Gisela and a seven -year old American bulldog, a three -year old Chinese Crested, and a 32 -year old parrot.
Chihuahuas normally live between 12 and 18 years, so TobyKeith had lived longer than his normal life span. Even though he has a heart condition, it doesn’t seem to affect his daily life. He wakes up at 6:30 every morning to go on his daily walk with Gisela.
Gisela was asked what factors she thought were reasons for TobyKeith’s long life. She said that regular exercise, a diet of vegetables, chicken and rice, good genetics, and most of all, a loving and caring home.
But wait a minute–What about Pebbles? Bobby and Julie Gregory contacted Guinness about their fox terrier, Pebbles, after reading about the 21+year old chihuahua, named TobyKeith.
It seems that Pebbles was born the 28th of March 2000. That makes the fox terrier, Pebbles, older, and therefore the real oldest dog in the world. Bobbie and Julie Gregory attribute Pebbles long life to the happy and positive environment they provide, and proper healthcare and good food, and treating her like family.
Pebbles enjoys basking in the sun and playing under a palm tree in the Gregory’s South Carolina garden, taking walks with Bobby and waking up in the afternoon after staying up all night.
Usually the smaller breeds live longer than the larger breeds so, if you want a pet that lives a long time, you might consider a little pooch.
Just to clarify the whole dog age thing, these are the facts: Tobykeith, a chihuahua, is 21 years old; Pebbles, a fox terrier, is 22 years old. Happy Birthday, guys, and many more!
Pets and Memory
Researchers are looking into the possibility that older adults who own pets may be protected against cognitive decline. According to a preliminary study, older adults who own a cat or dog for five years or longer show slower cognitive decline.
A spokesperson from the University of Michigan Medical Center in Ann Arbor reports that prior studies have suggested that the human-animal bond may have health benefits like lower blood pressure and stress.
The study looked at cognitive data from 1,369 older adults, average age 65, with normal cognitive skills. A total of 53% owned pets, 32% were long-term pet owners–those who owned pets for more than 5 years. Of study participants, 88% were white, 7% were black, 2% were Hispanic, and 3% were of another ethnicity.
Researchers also used data from a large study of Medicare beneficiaries. Over 6 years, cognitive scores decreased at a slower rate in pet owners. The difference was strongest among long-term pet owners. On average, a cognitive composite score was higher for 6 year pet owners compared to non-pet owners.
This study is still in preliminary stages but if owning a pet can increase physical activity, it can also appear to benefit cognitive health.
Animal Charities Funds Report Good Results
A few months ago I wrote about the best animal charities that you might receive requests for donations to help animals. One of the problems is that the donor doesn’t always get a report back telling him what progress the charity is making.
I have been doing some searching and have found good news to report.
Best Friends Animal Sanctuary is hands on organization. They have their headquarters and adoption center in Utah; their motto is Save Them All– and they are dedicated to stop the killing of cats and dogs in shelters all over the country. Their goal is that every shelter will be euthanasia free by 2025. When Best Friends first started in 1984, around 17 million pets were killed every year. This year the number is well under one million.
PETA–-people for the ethical treatment of animals- has been working with universities and labs around the globe to stop experimentation on animals and use non-animal training methods. In June of this year, PETA announced a victory for animals in Pakistan.
“Live testing” on animals in veterinary hospitals and colleges and in individual industrial complexes is banned in Islamabad, Capital Territory and surrounding areas. PETA works with Vet schools and biomedical research firms in countries around the world by helping them get simulators and other non-animal training methods to replace animals in laboratories.
There was an announcement on Television last night(7-23) that PETA with the help of White Coat Waste Project had succeeded in closing several breeding places for the raising of Beagle pups for experimentation by the NIH(National Institutes of Health)–with hopes of stopping more breeding places in the near future. The rescued pups will be transferred to the Humane Societies for adoption.
Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue sanctuary rescues donkeys that have been seriously abused and starved. The sick animals are brought back to PVDR for rehabilitation and possible adoption.
The Animal Legal Defense Fund-through legal action, successfully stopped the State University of N.Y. College of Optometry from doing research and experimentation on kittens. They have several legal actions in courts. It takes forever to bring these to a court date.
Front Range Equine Rescue has been fighting Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for 25 years to stop the yearly roundup of wild horses. In ten western states federally protected wild horses still roam free, but the BLM still insists that there are too many horses for the amount of land available.
In the early 1900s close to 2 million wild horses lived in freedom in our western states. By the 1950s wild horse numbers were down to 25,000.
This year, BLM plans to remove 19,000 horses from taxpayer funded and legally protected public lands. Soon there will be no wild horse herds left in the wild. As it is now, at least 70% of herds are below genetic viability due to roundup policies.
This is a case of the BLM asking for appropriations and Congress granting the funds without questioning the need.
I was a little too busy the last month or two and didn’t get back. Hope to be back to business now. I’m always pleased to hear from my readers. Please send any comments, any subjects you are interested in, any problems you have with your pet.