Dogs, cats, pigeons in sight for hungry Venezuelans

As the economy spirals into deeper disarray, protests aimed at driving unpopular Venezuelans president Nicolás Maduro out of office are growing. Maduro responded over the weekend by declaring a 60-day state of emergency to combat what he said are U.S.-sponsored efforts to overthrow his socialist government.

hambre-en-VenezuelaPeter Wilson of USA Today reports the unrest mounts as the country faces continuing shortages of essential food, medicine and toiletries. All the bakeries here in La Victoria, 55 miles southwest of Caracas, stopped producing bread last week because there is no flour.

“People are hunting dogs and cats in the streets, and pigeons in the plazas to eat,” Ramon Muchacho, mayor of the Caracas district of Chacao, said this month in a tweet that was reported in many newspapers.

An epic drought has also gripped this nation that relies mostly on hydroelectric dams, sparking rolling blackouts and water shortages. Hospitals have had to postpone operations and procedures because of power outages. And government employees now work only two days a week to conserve electricity.


Do it in the country, like it just fine, do it on the city, $20 fine

Goodyear Police in Arizona arrested CBS 5 journo Jonathan Lowe Monday afternoon while he was on assignment, reporting on a former Arizona State University football player who allegedly sacrificed the family dog by putting him in a smoker in order to appease an angry God.

poo-emoji-collectionThat doesn’t begin to explain the kind of day Lowe was having, however.

“Lowe chose to use the front yard of a residence to relieve himself,” Goodyear Police Department spokeswoman Lisa Kutis tells New Times. “An onlooker from across the street called it in to officers. They approached him, he said he’d had to relieve himself, and they arrested him.”

Lowe was handcuffed and taken to the Goodyear Police station, where he was booked, cited, and released. Kutis says Lowe was cited under Goodyear code violation 11-1-30, “public urination or defecation,” a Class 1 misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $2,500 or six months in jail. 

Goodyear police haven’t released the arrest report, but the department confirms that the citation was for defecation. Kutis says the arrest took place at about 3:10 p.m., and that at the time various media outlets had been “in the neighborhood of the home where the dog incident took place.”

News of Lowe’s arrest was reported by TV news industry gossip site, which published a photo of the reporter being taken away in handcuffs beneath the headline “Cops Bust the Potty Reporter.” A subsequent article on the site claimed Lowe’s arrest “was the talk inside the Phoenix newsrooms” and that “two competing stations had video of Lowe being lead [sic] away.” 

Bizarrely, there was no further news about the former football player who smoked the dog to appease God.

Artificial sweetener, Xylitol, risk to dogs

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, sugarless gum may contain xylitol, a class of sweetener known as sugar alcohol. Xylitol is present in many products and foods for human use, but can have devastating effects on your pet. the past several years, the Center for Veterinary Medicine at FDA has received several reports—many of which pertained to chewing gum—of dogs being poisoned by xylitol, according to Martine Hartogensis, a veterinarian at FDA.

But gum isn’t the only product containing xylitol. Slightly lower in calories than sugar, this sugar substitute is also often used to sweeten sugar-free candy, such as mints and chocolate bars. Other products that may contain xylitol include:

  • breath mints
  • baked goods
  • cough syrup
  • children’s and adult chewable vitamins
  • mouthwash
  • toothpaste

In both people and dogs, the level of blood sugar is controlled by the release of insulin from the pancreas. In people, xylitol does not stimulate the release of insulin from the pancreas. However, it’s different in canines: When dogs eat something containing xylitol, the xylitol is more quickly absorbed into the bloodstream, and may result in a potent release of insulin from the pancreas.

This rapid release of insulin may result in a rapid and profound decrease in the level of blood sugar (hypoglycemia), an effect that can occur within 10 to 60 minutes of eating the xylitol. Untreated, this hypoglycemia can quickly be life-threatening, Hartogensis says.

Symptoms of xylitol poisoning in dogs include vomiting, followed by symptoms associated with the sudden lowering of your dog’s blood sugar, such as decreased activity, weakness, staggering, incoordination, collapse and seizures.

If you think your dog has eaten xylitol, take him to your vet or an emergency animal hospital immediately, Hartogensis advises. Because hypoglycemia and other serious adverse effects may not occur in some cases for up to 12 to 24 hours, your dog may need to be monitored.

(A note to cat owners: The toxicity of xylitol for cats has not been documented. They appear to be spared, at least in part, by their disdain for sweets.)

10 dead, 100 sickened by rotten dog meat in Cambodia

Six people died earlier in the week after eating the barbecued carcass of a dog believed to have been found by a roadside.

dog.meat.cambodiaFour others from the same remote village in the Kratié (or Kraches) province in the northeast of the country later died after consuming the meat as well as drinking rice wine on Tuesday.

The deaths began on Sunday after a 76-year-old man died several hours after cooking and eating the dead dog. 

In a zen-like twist, guests at his funeral, which was held the following day, also ate the leftover dog meat and were rushed to the hospital with acute food poisoning.

The deaths are in region of Cambodia where canines are regarded as a delicacy.

Doggy hardware: Friendly policy questioned after dog bites girl at Australian outlet

Bunnings is the Home Depot of Australia.

I’ve always been a fan of doggy dining, where canines can accompany folks to a restaurant, but only with a bunch of caveats:

  • only outside;
  • management can decide whenever they want to evict a dog; and,
  • the adults involved aren’t entitled douchebags.

bunningsJust days after the popular home improvement chain confirmed that customers were now allowed to take their pooches inside stores, a Melbourne child has allegedly been bitten on the leg.

Five-year-old Madeline Hungerford is recovering at home after an incident at the Bunnings store in Melton yesterday.

“We just don’t think dogs should be there,” Ms Hungerford told 3AW’s Neil Mitchell this morning.

“Bunnings on a Sunday is really busy … It’s just not a good environment for a dog.”

She said the family had been walking through the store when their little girl was set upon.

“We were walking past two little dogs, one was being patted at the time and Madeline tried to pat the other one,” Ms Hungerford said.

But before her little girl could get within patting range, she said, the dog — believed to be a Jack Russell terrier — allegedly bit her on the leg.

“It’s broken the skin just below her knee,” she said.

“She’s got two bite marks that broke the skin, a couple of bite marks around the side and bruising and swelling.” a cruel twist of fate, Madeline had only just become comfortable around dogs when the incident occurred. revealed on Thursday Bunnings had unveiled a new policy of welcoming pets into stores.

Bunnings operations director Michael Schneider then said that while customers weren’t being encouraged to bring pets inside, “as long as pets are under appropriate control, are not aggressive and do not compromise the safety of our team or customers they are welcome”.

“Our team members have full discretion to deny any pet entry to the store,” he said, adding that assistance animals “have always been and will always be allowed entry into our stores”.

While a majority of readers supported the move in an online poll, some expressed concern.

Your chewing gum is making your dog sick

If Snopes and scientific studies aren’t enough, perhaps reports at the Wall Street Journal, CBS News, and Nature World News can sway you: A sugar substitute found in chewing gum and other everyday food and household items can make dogs sick and even kill them. experts say xylitol—also used in toothpaste, gummy vitamins, some peanut butters, and breath mints—is about 100 times as toxic as milk chocolate to dogs, and it’s being blamed for an uptick in accidental pup poisonings, say animal poison-control centers. The ASPCA’s poison center, for instance, received more than 3,700 xylitol-related calls last year, with nearly a dozen deaths. And a toxicologist from the Pet Poison Helpline says it’s seen a “dramatic increase” in calls related to the sweetener, with only 300 in 2009, but 2,800 so far this year.

The problem xylitol poses for dogs is it causes a sudden surge of insulin after they eat it, which makes blood pressure plummet, possibly resulting in seizures, brain damage, or liver failure. And it takes just a small amount: As little as 50 milligrams of the sweetener per pound of body weight can be toxic, so even one or two pieces of gum can make a small dog ill.


UK dog found eating raw meat in illegal Co Armagh meat farm

Pictures of a dog eating raw meatd being prepared for the human food chain in an illegal Co Armagh butchery, have been released by a council.

dog meat farmThe owner of the premises Benard Muchan of Back Road, Mullaghbawn was arrested when police visited the shed in October 2012.

He pleaded guilty to ten offences relating to breaches of food safety regulations and was fined £10,000.

Newry and Mourne Council, which took the case, said conditions in the facility were “filthy.”

Environmental health officers called to scene found several beef carcases hanging in a makeshift butchery and cold room.

The council’s assistant director of environmental health Eoin Devlin said: “The premises, food contact surfaces and equipment were found to be in a filthy condition with decaying food debris and blood.

‘Construction workers like it’ Activists call on Swiss parliament to outlaw eating cat for Christmas

Amy talks glowingly of her time in Switzerland, but seems sorta weird to me. with the shameless exploitation of cats to increase blog hits, animal rights activists have drawn up a petition to ban the ‘barbaric’ practice of eating pets in Switzerland, where cat meat often appears on traditional Christmas menus in rural areas.

The animal protection group, SOS Chats Noraingue, has handed over a petition with 16,000 signatures, including such notable animal rights defenders as Brigitte Bardot, to the Swiss parliament on Tuesday.

Dog meat is often used to make sausage, while cats are prepared around the holiday season in a similar style to rabbit – in a white wine and garlic sauce. A type of mostbröckli made from marinated cat or dog is another local favorite.

Though there are no statistics available on the amount of cat and dog meat consumed by the Swiss, SOS Chats founder and president, Tomi Tomek told AFP she suspects that “around three percent of the Swiss secretly eat cat or dog.”

While the commercial sale of dog meat is banned nationwide, its consumption is still legal and is particularly popular in Lucerne, Appenzell, Jura and in the canton of Bern, according to Tomek. Farmers are free to kill and eat their own animals. Those in the Appenzell and St. Gallen areas are said to favor a beefy breed of dog related to Rottweilers.

In a 2012 report on pet eating in the Swiss paper Tages Anzeiger, the Swiss Veterinary Office chalked up the practice to a “cultural matter” and noted that some countries breed dogs specifically for slaughter.

One farmer, defending the practice, told the paper, “There’s nothing odd about it. Meat is meat. Construction workers in particular like eating it.”

Dog poops on plane, US Airways flight makes emergency landing

I’m as sensitive, if not more so, to the sight and smell of poop and barf. But on a plane, I get it together, like when a daughter barfed beside me upon landing: went into the barf bag, and I casually strolled out and deposited the gift in the garbage.

dog_vomitFlight 598 was already two hours late when it took off from Los Angeles International Airport.

Things went downhill from there.

A terrible smell spread through the cabin. And it got worse.

The source? A service dog, belonging to a passenger, heeded nature’s call smack in the center aisle. And then the mutt pooped again.

Then the passengers started vomiting.

Disgusted passengers took to Twitter Wednesday to voice their displeasure. Especially after the pilot announced they would be making an emergency landing in Kansas City, Mo., because the plane had run out of paper towels and the mess was clogging the aisle.

“The second time after the dog pooped they ran out of paper towels, they didn’t have anything else,” passenger Steve McCall told “Inside Edition.”

“The pilot comes on the radio, ‘Hey, we have a situation in the back, we’re going to have to emergency land!'” McCall recalled.

Micaela Connery tweeted “after being delayed 2 hours we get grounded because of dog poop on the plane. A 7 hour trip is now pushing 14.”

Real Housewives of New York dogs drink too

In the latest episode of the Real Housewives of New York, Ramona is having a calendar shoot with her dog when Sonja shows up for a chat with her pup. The four are seated on an elegant couch when the guest doggy gets thirsty. Sonja, without missing a beat, offers her pooch her water glass and tells him kindly it is too early for champagne.

RHONY-dog RHONY-Ramona RHONY-Sonja

Ramona, polite but taken aback says, “I have water right in the kitchen. You know, I hope you’re not going to drink from that after.”

Sonja replies distracted, “I miss Milou so much but this dog is just…” and sighs.

And then Sonja takes a drink from the same glass.

Perhaps she learned her etiquette from Real Housewife of Beverly Hills, Lisa.