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Wine Tasting at Vet Clinic Ended

For now, Jessica Klein, D.V.M., the owner of the Wine Country Veterinary Hospital in Windsor, can’t offer wine-tasting options to her visiting clients.

The enterprising vet had been informally showcasing local wines for a few months, allowing clients to taste the donated wine when they brought their pets in for appointments. Someone complained, which resulted in Klein embarking on an official path toward approval. The Windsor Town Council, however, denied her request Aug. 24 in a 3-2 vote, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

The wine-tasting-in-a-vet-clinic notion caused quite a stir in the Sonoma County town, prompting Vice Mayor Dominic Foppoli to say he had received more comments from the community about Klein’s request than any other agenda item in his three years as a councilmember.

“If this is the most controversial thing that’s going on in town right now, we’re in good shape in Windsor,” Foppoli told the Chronicle.

Detractors were adamant that alcohol and a vet clinic were an inappropriate fit, and city leaders questioned whether a decision in favor of Klein’s desire would have set a dangerous precedent. Klein said the idea was meant to be a fun and hospitable idea, the newspaper reported.

“As a vet, I’m always wearing two hats,” she said. “It was really just a hospitality gesture where I felt I could encompass my medical side and making people feel welcome.”


Limited Pet Sales Proposed

If Gov. Jerry Brown approves Assembly Bill 485, California pet stores will only be able to sell dogs, cats, and rabbits obtained from animal shelters or rescue organizations, the Sacramento Bee reported.

Assemblyman Patrick O’Donnell, D-Long Beach, sponsored the legislation to end “puppy mills” and other breeding facilities. Many cities have local restrictions on selling commercially bred animals. This would be the first time a state has initiated such a ban.

“Given the number of very adoptable, very lovable, very cute, very noble dogs and cats that we have in shelters all across the state,” said Assemblywoman Laura Friedman, D-Glendale. “Let’s focus on finding homes for those animals and not on encouraging the horrible trade of dogs and cats that come out of puppy mills.”

The ban would take effect in 2019. It would not cover private sales by dog, cat, and rabbit breeders.


Helping Evacuees

Several San Francisco Bay Area shelters and rescue organizations pitched in to help animals evacuated from shelters in the path of the destructive hurricanes, according to The Mercury News.

Among the local animal welfare groups that stepped up in the assistance effort were Tony La Russa’s Animal Rescue Foundation in Walnut Creek, Wings of Rescue of Livermore, the East Bay SPCA in Oakland and Dublin, and Berkeley Humane in Berkeley. ARF worked with the Humane Society of Broward County to empty its shelter.


Grief Assistance

These days, certified therapy dogs pop up in many places, from airports and disaster sites to hospitals and nursing homes. And now, a Chardon, Ohio, funeral home has added two Portuguese water dogs to its staff.

According to the News-Herald News, DeJohn Funeral Home uses Coco, 3, and Magic, 13, to offer emotional support and unbridled affection to grieving families not only at the funeral home, but also in the community. The dogs’ owner, Ross DeJohn Jr., takes the dogs to see patients in hospice care, hospitals, and nursing homes. He also takes the dogs to schools.

“There is something about an animal, particularly a dog that just puts people at ease,” DeJohn said.

Dirty, Dirty Paws

Inside Edition decided to see what dogs bring to their humans’ beds, convincing two dog owners to swab their furry friends’ paws with the sampled results going to a lab for analysis. Fluorescent marker was applied to dogs’ paws and ultraviolet light was used to pick up their tracks. Their homes glowed with pet paw prints everywhere.

Results indicated the dogs’ paws collected many types of bacteria, fungus, and E. coli plus a bad bug that can cause pneumonia, meningitis, and urinary tract infections. Both dog owners said they won’t kick their dogs out of their beds but they would try cleaning their pooches’ paws.


Sleep Tight

If you have wondered whether sleeping with your dog affects your sleep negatively, the answer seems to be no, though researchers had suspected the opposite.

Time recently reported that according to a Mayo Clinic study, a dog in the bedroom may lead to improved rest. However, allowing the dog in the bed may be disruptive.

Published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings, the study included 40 adults whose dogs slept with them in their bed or in the bedroom. Both species wore motion-tracking devices for seven nights. Humans answered questions about their shut-eye quality.

On average, people with dogs in their rooms maintained 83 percent sleep efficiency. The average was lower for those who slept with a dog in the bed when sleep efficiency was about 80 percent. Those with dog bed partners woke up more throughout the night.

Lead author Dr. Lois Krahn, a sleep medicine specialist at the Center for Sleep Medicine at the Mayo Clinic’s Arizona campus, says that for some owners, sleeping with an animal in the room is comforting. Multiple pets, however, increase disruption possibilities. The new study was small, did not contain a control group, and most of the participants were healthy, middle-aged women, which could mean the results may not apply to other populations.


Dog’s-Eye View

Dogs and humans don’t see the same, because the two species’ eyes are remarkably different. sums up the differences this way: Both have rods and cones as light receptors in their eyes, but dogs have more rods than cones while humans have more cones than rods. Cones help differentiate colors, and rods pick up dim light better.

Man sees three colors—red, green, and blue. Canines, however, detect only two, which have not been identified for certain. Dogs see better at night than humans and have an extra layer of tissue humans lack, the tapetum lucidum, which reflects light into the retina. And that’s why dogs’ eyes glow in the dark.


Pups, Not Flowers

An Iowa bride, Samantha Clark, recently decided to use puppies rather than bouquets at her wedding, People and The Des Moines Register reported.

Clark, 23, of Pleasantville, Iowa, convinced AHeinz57 Pet Rescue and Transport, a local rescue, to let her borrow some squiggly, adorable almost-8-week-old Chiweenies at her wedding Sept. 9 instead of using flower bouquets.

“It was a really sweet way to bring raise awareness to rescue dogs,” said Amy Heinz, the shelter’s owner.

The pups’ presence inspired guests to contribute to the shelter’s “dollar dance,” a fundraiser. The puppies’ foster mom attended the wedding ceremony and reception, reporting later the little cuties soon would be available for adoption.


Canine Stem Cells

Paradise Animal Hospital in Catonsville, Md., is among a few clinics that have undertaken a new free drug trial for dogs with arthritis, network WMAR Baltimore reported.

Created in San Diego by Animal Cell Therapies, the drug trial uses canine stem cells to grow cartilage in the joint, which gives the dog more cushioning when moving. Veterinarians are hopeful the trial will culminate with new FDA-approved medicine for arthritis pain.


Buy a Dog a Beer

Santa Clarita dog and beer lovers recently turned out in force for the Buy a Dog a Beer Festival, The Signal reported.

Dirty Dog Squad, a Venice Beach rescue group, and enFuego Events got 20 local craft breweries together to raise money for dog rescue work.

“We wanted to come up with a unique theme and an event that would help support our rescue group. We already had a fundraising campaign called ‘Buy a Dog a Beer,’ so the name just naturally flowed,” said Dirty Dog Squad founder David Kaplowitz. The organization usually sells T-shirts and all-natural dog treats made from the spent grains of breweries to fund its rescue operations.

Andres Nuño, the event coordinator, said he appreciated that Kaplowitz actively and tirelessly rescues and re-homes so many dogs, some from kill shelters.


Zombie Dogs

Mangy animals running around the streets of Hanover Park, a Chicago suburb, this summer were actually coyotes, not dogs, according to The Daily Caller.

Local police warned residents to stay away from the animals, diseased urban coyotes with sarcoptic mange, which can cause hair loss and the development of secondary infections. Concerned members of the public thought the animals were neglected, malnourished stray dogs, and their repeated calls and posts prompted police to set the record straight. In doing so, police described the coyotes with substantial hair loss as resembling “some sort of ‘zombie’ dog.”

“There is unfortunately an increase in sarcoptic mange in the urban coyote populations which has caused these normally nocturnal animals to become more active during the day. Infected animals will often appear ‘mangy’—which looks just like it sounds.”

Coyote populations exist in and around Chicago, and the southern and central parts of Illinois are teeming with coyotes, according to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

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