THE OFFICIAL SPEAKING OF DOGS
In this month’s newsletter:
- Ask the trainer
- Dogs looking for homes
- Recent adoptions
- In memoriam
About Speaking of Dogs Rescue
Speaking of Dogs Rescue Program is a Canadian registered charity established in the Greater Toronto area (with foster homes across Ontario). Launched in 2001, we are a foster-based, all breed rescue with a focus on senior dogs. We are run solely by volunteers with a mission to help homeless dogs in need by providing shelter or sanctuary, necessary medical care, adoption and education.
Speaking of Dogs Rescue is the operating name
of Speaking of Dogs Rescue Program, a Canada
Revenue Agency–registered charity based in
Contact Speaking of Dogs
P.O. Box 8058, RPO Hurontario
Collingwood, ON L9Y 0H1
Phone: 705-444-SODR (7637)
Editor: Linda Knowles
Design: Kim Gladding
Contributors: Lucinda Glenny, Lorraine Houston, and Kim Gladding
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It’s Definitely the Dog Days of Summer!
We’re well into summer now, and while many of us are enjoying fun in the sun, it’s important that we continue to stay on top of safety precautions for our furry friends. Emphasis on the furry – dogs are very heavily dressed and likely to suffer in the heat more than we do!
One of the few times that I consider putting on my training hat in public and offer unsolicited advice is around summer and heat safety. Yes, I absolutely would break a window if necessary to quickly release an overheated dog from a car, but there are other situations that are also very dangerous for dogs.
You see it everywhere: the overjoyed look of a dog catching the wind in their open mouth as they hang out the car window at high speed – or any speed, really! However, this usually means that they’re not properly restrained and could be thrown from the vehicle in even a minor accident. Even if restrained, these dogs risk eye damage from small matter blowing up off the road in traffic, such as pieces of plants, salt, or small stones, which can all cause corneal damage. This is a painful and expensive injury to treat, and it can lead to lasting vision problems. Owners may not even realize an injury has happened. Dogs are safest when properly restrained inside the vehicle, but you can provide additional eye protection with “doggles,” available at many online retailers.
Drinking standing water is very dangerous for dogs. They could ingest a potentially deadly bacteria, such as Leptospira or Giardia, from the urine of other animals. Poisons from car run-off, such as antifreeze and wiper fluid, and other toxins found in puddles can also be deadly.
Many dogs naturally love to explore and often find the scent and taste of “flavoured” water far more enticing than boring, old tap water.
I’ve even seen my one dog lapping up rainwater from the patio furniture covers! It’s so important to keep a good eye on these unwanted opportunities and clean them up or restrain your dog as necessary.
This can happen when a dog swallows too much water too quickly, such as when playing fetch in a lake with a favourite toy. Because the game is so much fun, neither the handler nor the dog may be immediately aware of the effect and the dangerous outcome. Water intoxication can lead to “dry drowning” as the lungs become too full to work properly and tax the heart. Shock symptoms may occur, along with stumbling as though drunk. The potentially fatal consequences of the filled lungs can happen hours later, and owners might not realize what the trigger was.
I often see people throwing toys far out into a lake for their dogs and actively encouraging them to go out, even when clearly (to my eye) the dog is exhausted. To avoid this potentially deadly hazard, keep the water fetch games short and sweet or move them to on land.
As our dogs’ caregiver, we need to be the responsible ones; the dog might be begging for another round, but we need to assess their current physical status and sometimes risk disappointing them for their own good. Some breeds of dogs, such as bully and mastiff breeds, have far larger mouths and are therefore more in danger of swallowing huge gulps of water. Aim to use a flat toy, such as a disc, stick, or rope, so your dog doesn’t have to open their mouth as far to grab it. Conversely, a dog will likely inhale a good amount of water picking up a big, round ball.
Also, be careful playing water games with a garden hose. Many dogs love catching streams of water from a hose, and it’s a great hot water game! To play safely, avoid spraying your dog directly in the face, aiming for the tummy and lower limbs instead, and use a gentle water setting rather than the jet.
Ask The Trainer
Continued from above
Pools are another area of great fun but inherent danger for dogs, cats, and small children alike! Even if your dog loves to swim, an inground pool can prove impossible to escape from, especially by an exhausted dog. When a dog gets overtired, they very well may forget how to use the steps or ladder to get out. In this aroused state, they may begin to panic. Absolutely do teach them how to get out on their own, but don’t assume that they can be left unattended.
Soft pool covers can also look enticingly safe to walk across, and even large dogs can often make it a good distance before starting to sink. This can be exceptionally dangerous, as they become tangled, confused, and begin to panic.
I will never forget walking into a friend’s backyard and seeing my Standard Poodle Kudos floating, standing up on water in the middle of the pool. I hadn’t realized that the side yard I was told to put him in had easy access to their beloved pool. He’d successfully walked a fair way out before beginning to sink, and he was still not quite up to his stomach. It was a terrifying rescue as it was so important that I not get him nervous and flailing, which of course would have made things worse. We did succeed in getting him out safely, but it was horrible for both of us. He absolutely loved pools, but this one tricked him! I fully believe that if I hadn’t come out right then, he would have drowned. The moral of the story: under no circumstance should young children or pets ever have free access to pools; it’s just not worth the risk.
Fun Play Is Safe Play!
There’s always something to be aware of when it comes to your dog’s safety, no matter the time of year. The trick is to look at situations from your dog’s eyes, literally their eye level as well as their motivation. A dog’s drive and motivation are usually quite different from ours, so it’s imperative to at least occasionally look at life from their perspective. I mean, who wants to drink slime water when there’s a fresh bowl right there? Dogs do!
Now that you know how to play safely, get out there and enjoy your summer fun with your dogs! And if while you’re out and about you happen to see a dog left unattended in a car, please call 911 or contact Provincial Animal Welfare Services at 1-833-9ANIMAL (1-833-926-4625) for help.
A friend in need is a friend indeed
Without a doubt, a dog is a real friend. Our dogs come in all shapes and sizes, but they have one thing in common—they all need loving forever homes. Open your heart and your home to a rescue dog. You’ll be glad you did. For complete information about the adoption process, please visit www.speakingofdogs.com/adoption-process. For more information on each dog, simply click on their pictures and you’ll be taken to our available dogs.
Buddy is believed to be an approximately 10-year-old border collie/black lab mix who came to us by way of Manitoba as an unclaimed stray.
He is approximately 60 pounds of love. He lives up to his name as he is an easy going pal who loves nothing more than to be close to his foster parents whenever possible. He’s not shy about asking for pets and if he had his way, every day would be spent next to his people on the couch or at their feet, patiently waiting for pets with an adoring gaze.
While on walks and patrolling the backyard, Buddy has expressed keen interest in squirrels, so we aren’t sure if he’d be good with cats (sometimes there is a correlation and sometimes not). He’s been fine with other dogs, often choosing to move on if their energy level doesn’t suit him. If you are interested in Buddy and have another dog, it is recommended that the dogs meet ahead of time to see if they would be compatible mates.
Buddy might be fine with apartment life as he’s not so much as let out the smallest “woof” since arriving at his current foster home. He loves all kinds of treats once he gets settled and enjoys chasing tennis balls around the backyard.
Buddy loves going for walks! He’s usually good on leash, except when he spots a squirrel! His foster mom is working on keeping walks pull-free and this smart dude is catching on fast. He is strong and can pull a person along if he decides to run after a squirrel. He will need to continue his leash skills training.
Buddy does not use a crate. He sleeps in his dog bed or on the floor in the bedroom. He is very chill and not at all destructive when left alone.
- Good with dogs · Friendly with people · House trained · Moderately Active
Have a great photo of your furry best bud you’d like to share? We’d love to include it in the 2023 Speaking of Dogs Rescue calendar! It could be a photo of your pup having fun in the sun, chilling out a home, out on an adventure, enjoying the snow, or any other shot that warms your heart and makes you smile. Photos should not include people but can include a four-legged friend. There is no charge to submit, but please only send one photo per dog. Photos should be between 1 and 2 MB in size, either colour or black and white. Please email your favourite snapshot to email@example.com, and then keep an eye out for the calendars in October!
Dear Speaking of Dogs Rescue
1 year plus update for Charlotte (now Charlie)
Charlie is doing awesome! Her training has gone well. She’s very polite with other dogs and enjoys a game of chase you/chase me. Charlie has a dog friend down the street named Angus that she gets very excited to see. She loves the cats (perhaps a bit too much). The cats on the other hand are just starting to warm up to her, but they can quietly share space now and occasionally we see them grooming her. She doesn’t quite speak cat, but she respects the murder mittens, so we have no concerns.
We’re still working on over excitement when the leash comes out or a car ride seems imminent. She can do the entire relaxation protocol for hot dog slices, but can’t keep it together when we’re putting on our shoes.
She is by far the most snuggly, affectionate dog we’ve ever had. She loves to sleep with you or perhaps on you is more accurate. She pretty much sleeps while we’re working all day but requires walks/play/mental stimulation between the hours of 5pm and 8pm. She’s not picky about what we do, she just needs to be entertained between those hours.
Once again, thank you for introducing her into our lives!
Ron and Michelle