5 Pet Scams You Need to Know

The dog days of summer go beyond just rising temperatures – at least for pet lovers. Pet scams are also heating up, and here’s what you should know about the most common schemes: Dognapping Born during the economic downturn of recent years, dognapping involves stealing dogs from unattended backyards and cars - and, more commonly, even in the company of their owners. Some are then held for ransom. In one recent well-publicized case, surveillance video captured a dognapping in progress at …

11 Things We Didn’t Know Last Week

News, discoveries and … fun. 1. A 16th-century German military expert believed that weaponized cats could burn down enemy fortifications. (Learn more at National Geographic) 2. A door handle dispenses hand sanitizer to kill germs in hospitals. (Learn more at Gizmodo) 3. Barbara Walters’s most flirtatious interview took place in 1982 with actor Clint Eastwood. (Learn more at AARP) 4. The rap group Wu-Tang Clan will make one copy of its next recording and hope it sells for millions of dollars. (Learn …

Some Meals on Wheels Programs Feed Fido, Too

By Sue Manning, The Associated Press LOS ANGELES (AP) – If Meals on Wheels didn’t deliver donated dog food, Sherry Scott of San Diego says her golden retriever Tootie would be eating the pasta, riblets and veggie wraps meant for her. But thanks to partnerships between the program for low-income seniors and pet groups across the country, fewer people and pets are going hungry. After Meals on Wheels volunteers noticed a growing number of clients giving their food away to …

A Family Commune, One Year Later: Laughing, Barking, Crying, Shrieking…

The shriek of a 3-year-old can crack glass, shift a house on its foundation and register on earthquake scales 100 miles away. If you doubt that, come on over while Gracie, my granddaughter, pierces the air with a sound that is somewhere between a siren and a scream that will leave you vibrating for days. She is the primary addition to the merging of two families into one household, the smallest human member in a home that grew overnight a …

A Deer in the Garden, a Cat in the Box

These are the gentle years, beyond the rages of youth and the desperation of middle age, seasons of summer warmth, and skies so intensely blue that it hurts the eyes to gaze upon them.  Only God and the artist Magritte could paint such skies and implant such peace on a softening day in July. I was sitting on a bench in our garden, a half-acre spread that my wife has transformed into Eden, when it occurred to me how much …

8 Rich Resources for Needy Animal Owners

There’s a lot of attention on taking care of older adults, but what happens when the elderly need help caring for others – in this case, their pets? The owners might be ill or have mobility issues and can’t walk their dog, for instance. Or, their fixed income and rising daily living costs make feeding Rover or Kitty an expense they can no longer cover. Annual expenses (i.e. vet visits, food and supplements, boarding, toys) for dogs and cats are …