Thursday, April 30, 2009

I'm Slackin'!

So...I keep forgetting to bring my camera places. Darnit! This means when Spuds and Kado went swimming I had to use my cell phone to take pictures. Sorry! Spuds is 5 now so he's been swimming for a while. Kado on the other hand, the 1 year old, wasn't so sure what to do.

I'm goin' in!



Whoa! How does he do that!?



Maybe I'll just walk the edges for a while...



Nicceeee and safee...



Da du na nu! Stick!



Not Fair!! I'm jumpin' for it!



...Getting his barings?



Give me stick!



GIVEITTOME!!



S: Let.go.
K: YOU let go!
S:I'm not lettin' go!
K: Well I'm not letting go either!



Needless to say, Spuds got it away from him and hid it here...



Friday, April 24, 2009

Shadow is Hillaarriioousss

Dogs never cease to cheer me up.
Shadow and her bestest cousin ever, Kado, were playing once again. They are quite hyper as they are both just over 1 yr old, so they use a lottt of energy. Usually Shadow is the dog who wiggles so hard she falls over just by someone saying hi to her. It makes me tired just watching them sometimes. Well, apparently, all the playing makes Shadow tired too. This was her after one long play session...



I didn't even get a tail-wag!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Don't Believe the Bull- Pit Bulls Rock!




Commonly referred to as a “pit bull” dog:
American Pit Bull Terrier: 85.3% passed
American Staffordshire Terrier: 83.9% passed
Staffordshire Bull Terrier: 88.0% passed
Average: 85.7%

Other breeds in chart:
Golden Retriever: 84.6%
Labrador Retriever: 92%
German Shepherd: 83.7%
Mixed Breed: 85.4%
Border Collie: 80.6%

Scores as of December 2008. As you can see, “pit bull” dogs do great in temperament tests!

The point of this is not to say that pit bulls are “better” than other breeds, but rather to illustrate how inaccurate of an image has been portrayed of pit bulls.

Go to http://www.atts.org/index.html to see more breeds’ scores, to see how many of each breed were tested, etc.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

A Busy Week

This week was busy busy busy. Lots to do, not enough time.
On top of that, I felt a wave of discouragement. There are so many stories of Pit Bulls being abused , neglected, misjudged, misidentified, and the list goes on. Not to mention the fact that Ohio is trying to ban all Pit Bulls. It seems that for every person trying to fight for their rights, there are ten people trying to tear them down.
So I'm asking, go to www.bestfriends.org and read what they have to say on the matter. They have updates on what is going on with the bill in Ohio, among other great stuff about Pit Bulls. Education on this topic is the only way to fight bad information, bad media, and bad laws.
To help with the frustration, I played with GIMP:

Before



After



No GIMP involved, just thought it was cute
Is there something different about me?



Smells like Spring



Two pics in one



Just colored in the background



I'm not sure which one I like the best, but it was fun! And Spuds is too cute :)

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter Bunny Imposter

There was something funny about the Easter bunny this year. He cased the area...



He spied on Spuds



Meet Mr. Bunny:


He has a striking resemblance to Spuds


I couldn't figure it out. Why does the bunny look so much like a dog?
And like sticks, too?



Well, all this really freaked Kado out.
Where's that freaky bunny...


Have you seen him?


Ah ha! Here he is!
You will NOT impersonate Spuds. He's MY hero!



With Kado taking care of his dirty work, Spuds found some time to really enjoy the holiday.


Friday, April 10, 2009

GIMP

Fun learning about the GIMP program (With the help of StellaStar-Thanks!) :)

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Private Investigator - Spuds Mackenzie

The name's Spuds. Spuds Mackenzie. I'm on the hunt for a big, ragged, mean, strong- STICK!



I know he's around here somewhere. I can sense it.

I thought I smelled him..If I could just reach a littlllee farther
Is this him?



Derrr, nope. Just a relative.





But I think I just caught a wif oh him...FREEZE!
Don't you move, Stick. You're being taken into doggy custody for breaking your family's limb


Look Uncle Mike- I got him!

Thank you doG for giving me stickz. I guess I could play with him for just a sec...
Whooaa! He's heavier than I thought!


Woohooo! (This is not good...my tough exterior has been broken... and I'm completely top heavy!)


Ah crap, I've been caught. Does this count as harboring a fugitive?



Don't judge me. Stick and me are friends. Best friends.



I will whap you with him if you come any closer! I dare ya, go ahead and try
After all, what could be better than a stick?



P.S.- Pray for better lighting in Ohio so I don't have to have any more greyish looking backgrounds... :)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Entropion

What?

Chad and I took Shadow to the vet yesterday because her left eye always gets gooky and has a lot of tears. We thought maybe she had a scratch on the inside of her eyelid or something...
The vet said she has ENTROPION. Doesn't that sound scary? It's not really that scary...
It just means the dog's bottom eyelid curls inward, which can cause all sorts of different problems and be uncomfortable. Luckily Shadow's is a very mild case, so we're trying medicated eye drops in hopes that it won't get worse (because surgery would be next!!)
Other than that, the visit went really well. Shadow befriended a lady in her late 60's (i.e.-sat up next to her demanding head scritchins the whole time we were in the waiting area). She happily greeted every dog who entered the place (i.e.- whining at the top of her lungs and wagging her butt so hard I thought it was going to fall off).
I was able to snap a few pics with my cell phone, and by the looks of them you would never guess she had such a good time...

Heyyy, I thought we were here to make friends. There's no friends in that thing!


Put the light in my eye one more time and I'm gonna eat it lady.



I have no idea why she looks like a deranged monkey here. This is how the humans saw it...
By the look on her face you'd think this is the way she saw the situation...
Guys...I-I--I think there's something behind meee.....*Shiver*
(Don't let her fool you, she enjoyed her lovins more than a crack head with a fix, heehee)

Monday, April 6, 2009

Walk 4 Wellness 2009!

Harump. I'm bored.



Dee da dee...



Ohh, hello there. My name is Kasey. Wanna know what the heck a Walk 4 Wellness is? Well keep reading, duhhh.






Animal Assisted Therapy, exercise, and Mental Health Go Hand-in-Hand!

Here are some findings of related research:


Quality experiences in sports can have beneficial emotional effects in terms of reduced negative affect (anxiety, sadness, anger, depression, guilt, etc) and increased self-esteem (Biddle, 1993).

Evidence points to physical activity, or associated factors, as an effective treatment. The use of exercise and sport in the prevention and treatment of state anxiety, moderate depression, and/or low self-esteem may often be recommended as a practical approach. In addition to reducing the essential symptoms, exercise is less costly than other therapeutic methods. Because of its intrinsic activeness, it may also bring additional physical, psychological, and social benefits (Gleser & Mendelberg, 1990).

Exercise treatments for depressive symptoms improve stress symptoms and self-rated quality of life (Atlantis, Chow, Kirby, et al., 2004).

It is argued that pets can provide access to social support: (a) directly through the close relationship between pet and owner and (b) indirectly through providing a means of facilitating interactions with other people, leading to a sense of belonging and social integration, and as a platform for forming deeper, more permanent relationships (McNicholas & Collis, 2006).

After six months of participation in Animal-assisted therapy, there were improvements in mental functions of participants in a long term nursing home setting (Kawamura, Niiyama, & Niiyama, 2007).

In an animal-assisted therapy study, children completed the tasks faster when a dog was present than when the dog was absent. This indicates that the presence of a therapy dog served as an effective motivator for the children, who performed faster, but without compromising accuracy (in all tasks but one). The interaction between dog presence and type of task was significant. This indicates that the presence of the dog increased performance accuracy in some types of tasks, while decreasing it in others. Based on these results and the strong connection between motor skills and language development, the authors recommend a role for therapy dogs in speech and language development programs for preschool children (Gee, Harris, & Johnson, 2007).

If you don’t already know, Mental Health America of Licking County strives to help prevent and improve mental illness through education- from preschoolers to adults. Among other topics, we can tell people to exercise and spend time with animals (if they like animals, that is) until we’re blue in the face, so we figured, why not put our advice into action!

That is why we are teaming with Angel Paws animal-assisted therapy group to do the walk. The therapy dogs and their owners from Angel Paws don’t just visit nursing homes, but also help kids learn to read! As you saw from the research mentioned above, the therapy can help kids learn in some areas. Angel Paws dogs simply allow the children to read to them, which improves the children’s comfort level, confidence, and enjoyment of reading. Visit www.angelpawstherapy.org to see pictures of the therapy in action!

We recently got news from Patti Shanaberg at Angel Paws that an artist with the Highlights Magazine will be helping us design the logo for the event! Woohoo!

We hope you can join us on August 22nd from 9am-1pm starting at the Park & Ride on the corner of Cherry Valley Road and Reddington Rd. in Newark for this great family event.

If you have questions, email ahagley@mhalc.org

References

Atlantis, E., Chow, C., Kirby, A., and Singh, M. (2004). An effective exercise-based intervention for improving mental health and quality of life measures: A randomized controlled trial. Preventive medicine: An international journal devoted to practice and theory, 39, 424-434.

Biddle, S.J. (1993). Children, exercise and mental health. International journal of sport psychology, 24, 200-216.

Gee, N.R., Harris, S.L., and Johnson, K.L. (2007). The role of therapy dogs in speed and accuracy to complete motor skills tasks for preschool children. Anthrozoos, 20, 375-386.

Gleser. J. and Mendelberg, H. (1990). Exercise and sport in mental health: A review of the literature. Isreal Journal of psychiatry and related sciences, 27, 99-112.

Kawamura, N., Niiyama, M., and Niiyama, H. (2007). Long-term evaluation of animal- assisted therapy for institutionalized elderly people: A preliminary result. Psychogeriatrics, 71, 8-13.

McNichols, J. and Collis, G. (2006). Animals as social supports: Insights for understanding animal- assisted therapy. Handbook on animal-assisted therapy: Theoretical foundations and guidelines for practice (2nd Ed), 49-71.