Sunday, April 30, 2006

Cesar Milan's new book is out!

It's gotten really good reviews....has anyone read it yet?
Here is Cesar's website address:

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Happy Easter to all the Small Dogs!

Nicky the Lion claims his Howl-O-Ween Grand Prize!!

Jenny Justis found the Alameda Small Dog website and discovered her dog was the Grand Prize winner of the 2005 Howl-O-Ween Costume Contest! They had to leave before the winners were announced and didn't know they'd won. Nicky is a vivacious 13 year old. Congratulations to Nicky & Jenny! And many thanks to Club Canine for the fantastic gift basket!

Friday, March 24, 2006

Info from the ASPCA on poison control

Here's some information from the ASPCA on things that may or may not be toxic to our dogs. There is more info on their website on the Poison Control Center link.

10 Poison Prevention Tips - Keep your pet poison-safe with our 10 helpful tips.

Did You Know?
Mothballs can potentially be toxic to dogs, cats and other animals, particularly those containing an ingredient known as napthalene.

Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Pet:
- Alcoholic beverages
- Avocado
- Chocolate (all forms)
- Coffee (all forms)
- Fatty foods
- Macadamia nuts
- Moldy or spoiled foods
- Onions, onion powder
- Raisins and grapes
- Salt
- Yeast dough
- Garlic
- Products sweetened with xylitol

Warm Weather Hazards:
- Animal toxins—toads, insects, spiders, snakes and scorpions
- Blue-green algae in ponds
- Citronella candles
- Cocoa mulch
- Compost piles Fertilizers
- Flea products
- Outdoor plants and plant bulbs
- Swimming-pool treatment supplies
- Fly baits containing methomyl
- Slug and snail baits containing metaldehyde

Medication - Common examples of human medications that can be potentially lethal to pets, even in small doses, include:
- Pain killers
- Cold medicines
- Anti-cancer drugs
- Antidepressants
- Vitamins
- Diet Pills

Cold Weather Hazards:
- Antifreeze
- Liquid potpourri
- Ice melting products
- Rat and mouse bait

Common Household Hazards:- Fabric softener sheets
- Mothballs
- Post-1982 pennies (due to high concentration of zinc)

Holiday Hazards:
- Christmas tree water (may contain fertilizers and bacteria, which, if ingested, can upset the stomach.
- Electrical cords
- Ribbons or tinsel (can become lodged in the intestines and cause intestinal obstruction—most often occurs with kittens!)
- Batteries
- Glass ornaments

Non-toxic Substances for Dogs and Cats - The following substances are considered to be non-toxic, although they may cause mild gastrointestinal upset in some animals:
- Water-based paints
- Toilet bowl water
- Silica gel
- Poinsettia
- Cat litter
- Glue traps
- Glow jewelry

If You Think Your Animal Is Poisoned…

In spite of your best efforts, your animal may accidentally become poisoned. Being prepared can save your pet’s life.

Know your vet's procedures for emergency situations, especially ones that occur after business hours. Keep phone numbers for your veterinarian, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, and a local emergency veterinary service in a convenient location.

Keep a pet poison safety kit on hand for emergencies. Your kit should contain:
- A fresh bottle of hydrogen peroxide 3% (USP)
- Can of your pet’s favorite wet food
- Turkey baster, bulb syringe or large medical syringe
- Saline eye solution to flush out eye contaminants
- Artificial tear gel to lubricate eyes after flushing
- Mild grease-cutting dishwashing liquid for the animal after skin contamination.
- Rubber gloves
- Forceps to remove stingers
- Muzzle (Remember, an excited animal may harm you.)
- Pet carrier

Call the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center’s 24-hour emergency hotline at (888) 426-4435. A consultation fee may apply. When you call the center, please be ready to provide:

* Your name, address and telephone number
* If you know what substance your pet has ingested, have the product container/packaging available for reference. You’ll also need to provide information, if you know it, about the amount ingested and the time since exposure.
* Your pet’s species, breed, age, sex and weight
* All symptoms your pet is experiencing

Friday, March 17, 2006

SF SPCA's Dog Day on the Bay is coming up!

Have you heard about this benefit event? It sounds like a lot of fun. I've heard they really do it up right for the dogs and the people! (Follow the link to see great pictures from last year's event.)

Hornblower Cruises & Events Presents: A Benefit for The San Francisco SPCA
Dog Day on the Bay
Sunday May 7, 2006
Boarding - 10:00 a.m., Departure - 11:00 a.m., Return - 1:00 p.m.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Peanut Butter Biscotti for Dogs

Here' a tasty treat for your little gourmet!

Peanut Butter Biscotti for Dogs
(from the kitchen of Sophie Hamilton)

1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cups wheat germ or oat bran
1 tsp. baking powder
pinch salt
1 egg
2 tbsp. canola oil
2 tbsp. honey
2 tbsp. dry milk powder
3/4 cup milk
3/4 natural peanut butter
1/2 cups chopped peanust or carob chips (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl, combine the flours, wheat germ, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl; stir together the egg, oil, honey, milk powder and water. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture along with the peanut butter and peanuts or carob chips, and stir until well-blended.

Shape the dough into a 14 - inch log on an ungreased baking sheet, and flatten until it's about 6 inches wide. You can brush the top with a beaten egg to give it a shiny finish.

Bake 30 minutes or until firm. Remove from the oven, and reduce temperature to 250 degrees F. Cool the log before cutting it into 1/2 inch slices on a slight diagonal using a sharp, serrated knife.

Place each slice on its bottom about 1/2 inch apart on the cookie sheet so it stands upright. This way, you don't need to flip the biscotti while re-baking. Bake for about 30 minutes. Turn the oven off, but the leave the biscotti inside for several hours to harden as they cool.

Makes about 18 biscotti. Store in a tightly sealed container. has a new blog!

It has a lot of good and interesting dog-related articles and information. Small Dog highly recommends it!

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Foster Homes needed for local small dogs!

Foster homes wanted for small dogs!

We find sweet, abandoned dogs at local shelters and to save their lives, we need foster homes available. We work with many of the local bay area rescue organizations, such as Smiley Dog, Hopalong and Furry Friends, as liasons between the shelter, potential foster homes and the rescues. If you are able to open your heart and home to a sweet dog in need of a temporary, safe and loving home, please call Laurie at 510-658-7534. Foster homes are the only way we can save these small sweet dogs.

Here are some pictures of small dogs needing homes. They keep coming and coming, and we are constantly looking for new foster homes. Fostering is a very rewarding experience! Please call Laurie at 510.658.7534 today if you can foster a small dog. Thank you!

PattyO & Laurie(Shelter Volunteers)

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Great information on dogfood

Hi all:

I just wanted to share this webpage with you all. It has some great information on healthy food for our dogs.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Hi Lloyd here...

Hi Lloyd here.

I would like to thank also the Volunteers of the dog park.I live in Hayward and bring my friends dog every so often. George is a little over 30 lbs. but he 12 and missing a leg, so we go into the small area more. George is a Cocker Spaniel. I would like to adopt a male one myself. Any one know where one might be found?

Thanks Lloyd

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

POSTPONED to Feb. 4th - Party at the Park!

(Rain predicted all weekend so the Birthday Party has been postponed to NEXT Saturday, February 4th. Hope to see you there!!)
Marilyn & Rena are planning a birthday party for their dogs, Trinity & Spotnik - and several other January dogs! Festivities will be on Saturday, January 28th from 1 - 3 pm. Dog treats/cake served at 2!

Please join us!

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Diamond pet food recall & toxic food - (article)

It looks like none of the pet foods that were contaminated were shipped to California. Here is the link the the entire article:

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Knit a sweater for your dog!

Rena (Spotnik's Mom) knits and she's been knitting some fabulous sweaters for Spotnik. She recommends these books. You can find them online at various places. Amazon sells them. Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Cooking for your Dog: Doggie Turkey Stew

Here's a great recipe for a homemade stew for your dog. A friend of mine started making this for her aging dog and his health has improved dramatically. She uses organic ingredients; makes a big pot of it, then freezes it in ziplock bags.

Cooking for pets / Not everyone opts for commercial pet food        

Adrianne Marcus, Special to The Chronicle
Saturday, December 28, 2002

The day Hecate arrived, a tiny, scrawny tar-black kitten, we had just come back from Bodega Bay with a fresh salmon right off the boat. I cooked it. We ate it. She ate it. And she never looked back.  

I was doomed, from that moment on, to cook for my pets.  

Well, "pets" is a misnomer. Pets would make those compliant purring or wistfully whining sounds at your knee. "My demanding companions" would be a better phrase. Like, What's for dinner, Mom?" Bark. Stare. Yelp.

Hecate is, alas, long gone, but not before she parted to the dogs the need for home-cooked meals.

In a household of dogs, there is always one picky eater. It's a lot like on an airline when you discover you can order a special meal. The rest of the pack sees this; in moments, they become picky as well.

Lady, our wolf hybrid, wanted meat, preferably lamb, in any form. Dea prefers chicken. Preferably boiled. And the puppies? Anyone else's food. Since the new puppies, Mercury and Misty, came, I have been part of the Silken Windhound group, about 140 of us lucky enough to be owned by these dogs first bred in the 1980s by Francie Stull in Austin, Texas. Actually, as my friend Shelley says, they should be called Silken Whinehounds because they do that at mealtimes and when they want attention.

Because it had been six years since the last puppy entered our home, a white Borzoi called picky Nikki, I thought maybe I'd have an easier time with these dogs, whom, I was told, would eat anything.

Not in this house they don't. They have carefully observed Nikki, who would willingly starve to death rather than eat plain kibble.

The puppies took their cue from her and began turning their snouts up at the proffered kibble buffet. So I turned to the Windhound group, asking what they fed their dogs, and the answers came back: high-grade kibble with a few things added.

Some used a raw diet, called BARF (no, that doesn't stand for what the dogs do when discontented) that consists of things such as raw chicken and beef, and evidently many Silkens and other sighthounds thrive on it.

I did try part of it with my borzoi, but only the chicken necks, and for me, it didn't work. So I still cook all their food, including the chicken and turkey necks. And I disguise the kibble with various ruses.

Now, the good parts: Before there was kibble we humans made our own dog food. Oatmeal, sweet potatoes, carrots, potatoes and ground meat, cooked together, was their food, and a healthy diet it was. Some of us still do this. I do supplement with a high-quality kibble minus preservatives and corn; barley and rice and sunflower seeds are just fine.

There are things we eat that dogs should not eat: onions, which can cause anemia in dogs; garlic, although if you examine the ingredients on many dog food cans you find garlic as one of the ingredients. Grapes (which mine love) should be carefully rationed, as should raisins.  A month ago, I discovered that two of my dogs had extremely loose bowels. I couldn't figure out why, until I caught them under the fig tree, chewing up those overripe figs that had dropped.

Yesterday I cooked an entire turkey for them and for us. I stripped the meat off the bones, minced it in my blender and carefully integrated it with their dry food. The older dog gets hers mixed with senior dog kibble. Turkey soup will follow as a moistening agent, and because sighthounds, unlike regular dogs, have almost no fat on their bodies, I add olive oil in small quantities to their food. They also eat whatever butter they can steal.

For they are masters of theft: counter surfers, Styrofoam spotters. The rule is simple: Leave nothing on the counter you intend to use later. We had a wonderful lunch one day that was too big to finish, so home it came in a Styrofoam box. I walked out of the kitchen long enough to answer the doorbell, and when I returned, less than a minute later, the box had vanished. I found it five minutes later, opened and the contents, plus a chunk of the  Styrofoam, devoured.

It isn't just our edibles they are after: The paraffin candles left out in a box on the table the night after a storm left us without electricity were fair game. We found them chewed and spit out on the rug - 12 candles. I called the poison control center to be sure that this would not damage their stomachs. "No," the man said, "children do this as well." What could be the attraction in the taste of paraffin is beyond me. Perhaps it is those wax lips from Halloween that they are trying to recapture. There are other definite no-no's beyond onions, garlic, grapes and the like. No chocolate. Do not leave a box, a bar, a bit of chocolate out. Given a European chocolate bar of the darkest persuasion, my husband turned his back on it, and our borzoi ate it. It turned out to be a $65 bar of chocolate because that is what it cost to take her to the vet.

Dogs cannot metabolize chocolate, and probably not wine, either.

But cooking for pets has its rewards. Sleek coats, content animals and great bursts of energy are the norm around here. I make them turkey barley soup come winter, grating up the carrots and string beans (which they would pick out if they could), and forget about mushrooms. My dogs hate mushrooms and can pick them out in a heartbeat, dropping them indelicately on the floor next to their food bowls.  

A great recipe by Emily Olson in Menlo Park is what her Windhounds love, and I can vouch that it's a two-bark favorite.

  Doggie Turkey Stew
  2 lbs. ground turkey
  1 cup uncooked brown rice
  6 cups water
  2 carrots
  2 apples
  1-2 sweet potatoes
  2 tablespoons molasses
  2 tablespoons olive oil
  1 bunch green veggies (broccoli, green beans, watercress, nori, etc.)
  3 cloves garlic
  1 tomato

Emily throws it all in a big pot and simmers it until the rice is cooked and the vegetables are tender, then she either mashes it all with a potato masher or purees half the stew in a blender. She also admits that sometimes she uses frozen veggies: no onions, however. And just keep adding water as the rice absorbs it - what you are aiming for is a thick stew consistency.

I make the same kind of stew with hamburger and whatever vegetables are in the crisper. I also use squash in my mixture. Cottage cheese and yogurt are doggies' favorite treats: I spoon a couple of tablespoons of these into their bowls with kibble.

Debs Herold, who raises both Windhounds and greyhounds, buys a frozen meat mixture that comes in packages and mixes it with water and a dry high-protein kibble. In the winter she adds ground-up chicken necks to increase the fat content, and she adds molasses as well.

Her secret to good-eating dogs who -aren't picky is to allow them to have the food no longer than 30 minutes and try to feed them at the same time every day. There are, of course, special days. On Sunday morning, when we have scrambled eggs, guess who else has scrambled eggs? And one pancake each on those rare pancake days. Minus the syrup.

My son-in-law, who, so far, has denied his child the comfort of a pet, claims I feed my dogs better than some humans. He's right. I probably wouldn't make pancakes for him. But then again, does he have all the qualities I find admirable in my dogs?

My furfriends are incredibly loyal, always glad to see me and don't give me lectures on what I should or shouldn't do. And even better, they live totally in the present tense and show up, on time, for their meals.

Adrianne Marcus is a poet and fiction writer, and the author of "The Chocolate Bible." E-mail her at
©2005 San Francisco Chronicle