Thursday, August 22, 2013

Obama's New Dog Sunny

Repost of Washington Post Article

What’s the political message behind Obama’s new dog Sunny?

The Obamas’ dogs, Bo, left, and new addition Sunny. (Pete Souza/The White House)
In the hours since she joined the first family, 1-year-old Sunny — the Obamas’ new Portuguese water dog — has frolicked on the South Lawn of the White House, played with Bo and sat for lots of photo ops.  But when you live at the White House, things are rarely so uncomplicated. Presidential pets have been trotted out for everything from highly popular campaign photos to eponymous children’s books. And as George Washington University’s Jim Lebovicdiscovered in a 2012 study, aptly titled “Unleashing Presidential Power: The Politics of Pets in the White House,” the public tends to see the White House dog at very specific times.
The Post called Lebovic to talk about his work. The conversation has been edited for space and clarity.
So you did a study on presidential pets a few years ago that was a bit tongue in cheek.
Well, as a journalist, you know you can’t write anything about animals without using puns. Initially I protested the puns, but I was loudly vetoed by my co-authors. And then once the floodgates opened, they just kept coming. I may have contributed a few in the end, myself.
The problem was, all the jokes made some blogs and news organizations think the research itself was a gag. It was actually quite sound. We collected news stories on presidential pets, mostly dogs, going all the way back to the Roosevelt administration, and then put that in the computer with all the public opinion and economic data that political scientists usually employ.
Or dog-oriented stories, as the case may be.
Humanizing, let’s say. They humanize the president.
Is the Obamas’ new dog supposed to send that kind of message, do you think?
Let’s put it this way — and I should say, I’m standing next to my 55-pound standard poodle, whom I love dearly, as I say this — if I had a large, grassy lawn like the president does and a staff to take care of them, I would probably think about getting another dog. Sunny looks like a wonderful acquisition.
So it’s not a PR ploy?
Is the first family aware that pets have a positive impact on their public perception? They’re savvy politicians. Of course they’re aware that pets have a humanizing influence. When the president gets out of his helicopter and there’s a dog there to greet him, that’s something people can relate to.
But given the fact that the president’s not seeking reelection and he has his hands full with the NSA scandal, the deteriorating situations in Egypt and Syria, and other possible crises around the world, my suspicion is that the dog will have zero effect on public opinion. My suspicion is that he got a dog for the same reason most people get dogs: He wanted one.
Do you think we — the media, the public — pay too much attention to this sort of thing?
In Washington, unfortunately, we have the tendency to politicize everything. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. Sometimes a dog is just a dog. Despite my important research into presidential pets, I do think we probably make way too much of this. We should remember the extent to which political people have normal human needs, motives and families that drive their decisions.
Are you planning any more research on presidential pets?
Actually, most of my work relates to arms control and nuclear weapons. I have a book coming out on strategic nuclear arms control with Johns Hopkins next month.

Mickey's Pet Supplies is your source for natural pet supplies for cats and dogs, specializing in made in USA pet products.
Take 10% off your order with coupon code BLOG813  entered at checkout.
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Guaranteed Tough Dog Toys Review

Hurley Dog Toy
There are many great chew dog toys available, but there are a few companies that guarantee their products.
What that means to you as a pet parent:  Any of the Zogoflex toys from West Paw Design or Orbee Tuff balls from Planet Dog will be replaced for FREE! 
These companies are Made in USA dog toy companies: West Paw Design and Planet Dog
The Zogoflex toys from Planet Dog are made of an amazingly tough material that makes their toys bouncy, floatable and dishwasher safe. All Zogoflex dog toys are recyclable! 
Zogoflex is BPA and phthalate-free, Non-toxic and FDA compliant. (meaning it's safe to eat off of!)

There are many styles of Zogoflex dog toys from West Paw Design to choose from:
This is a bone shaped dog chew toy made by West Paw Design.  It comes in three sizes to suit all dogs.  There is a mini size measuring 4.5 inches, small measuring 6 inches and large size measuring 8.25 inches.  
This is really indestructible ball that floats, bounces and you can put in the dishwasher to clean.
It too is available in three sizes: Mini- 2 inch, Small- 2.6 inches and Large 3.5 inches
It comes in a great selection of bright colors.  If you are tired of your dog chewing tennis balls up in minutes, this is a great ball.  
Tux is also made of Zogoflex by West Paw Design.  It is a dog chew toy that is stuffable.  That means you can tuck dog treats into it to make your dog's play time more fun! You can stuff it with healthy yogurt, chicken broth or water and freeze too. Tux is pliable, bouncy and dishwasher safe.

Orbee Tuff dog toys from Planet Dog are also guaranteed as tough and durable dog toys.
The highest rated ball is the Orbee Tuff Orbee Ball with its world design and minty smell.
It is available in three colors: blue/green, pink/blue and a glow in the dark version with orange. Available in Small and Large. Rated a 5 out of 5 on toughness scale. 
The Diamond Plate Ball is a favorite amoung or "no-nonsense" customers. It is also rated a 5 out of 5 chompers on the Planet Dog Tough Scale.
There's also the Orbee Tuff Sport Balls in bigger sizes: Orbee Soccer Ball and Orbee Football.
We recommend these for larger breeds. The Soccer ball measures 5 inches in diameter and the Football measures 6 inches. 
All of the Planet Dog Orbee Tuff dog toys are non-toxic, recyclable, Made in USA and wash clean. 
The Planet Dog LUNA ball is doggie-durable, buoyant, minty, non-toxic and GUARANTEED TOUGH or Replaced for free.  Luna measures 4 inches and glows in the dark.  Our bigger size dogs really enjoy this ball, as it is easy to pick up.  Rated a 4 out of 5 chompers. 

Planet Dog Orbee Strawberry

The Planet Dog Orbee Strawberry is rated 4 out of 5 chompers. It also has a 'treat spot" center so you can put some of your dogs favorite treats inside! 

  Mickey's Pet Supplies carries the largest selection of Made in USA dog toys.
We are experts at recommending what toy is right for your best friends.
At Mickey's you receive personal service, attention to detail and lightning fast shipping with low prices and FREE shipping on your $75 order.
Visit us at or Call 877-863-5431
We are always available to answer any questions! 
Take 10% off your order with coupon code BLOG813. Just enter the code at checkout or mention when you call to place an order. 

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Wholesome Hide Rawhide comparison to other rawhides

Good morning,
Last night I was contacted by a dog nutrition blogger from Sweden.  Here is her questions to me:

"Hello! I'm a dog nutrition blogger from Sweden and I'm doing a research on rawhide which is used as dog treats. I've read your comment to the article "Finding the right rawhide chew for your dog" by Nancy Kerns from the Whole Dog Journal. I can concluse that you must be very competent in the questions regarding rawhide. That's why I'd very much appreciate if you helped me to better understand some points in rawhide production. I'm particularly interested in white (bleached) rawhide chews manufactured in China. There's a clear difference between the ones you sell and the ones that sell in chain supermarkets. But I suppose it's not only the looks that differ. The Swedish retailers claim those chinese chews are controlled and thus safe for dogs to eat. Can I trust them or they can actually claim whatever they want? Do you know if there are good tanneries in China that honestly produce good chews? My dog womited each time she ate one of those white chews. Could it be because of traces of hydrogen peroxide that was used to bleach the hide? I read that if digested it can cause womiting. Can it be true? And later on when I did a hair tissue mineral analyses on her I discovered that she has high levels of ARSENIC, aluminium and mercury. The veterinarian guessed it could have been rawhides I gave my dog as treats that led to arsenic and aluminium poisoning. Could you please explain how heavy metals end up in rawhide chews? And one more question: is it by any means possible that the Chinese recycle tanned leather scraps as dog chews? Thank you very much for your time. I would be grateful if you shared with me your insights on those questions." Tina 

Here is my response to Tina:
Anything is possible with pet products made in China. You probably are aware of dog deaths from chicken dog jerky treats from China. Finally the FDA here in the United States was able to determine that there was unapproved antibiotics used by the Chinese. 
All cow hides have to be cleaned in a very dilute solution of hydrogen peroxide to kill any bacteria, otherwise they would not be safe for dogs because of contamination. Foreign countries that produce huge volumes of rawhide are making them completely stable for shipment in really hot containers that travel for weeks and then sit again on docks for months sometimes before customs clears them. By freshness and all natural standards, they are over processed and very dry and brittle. 
The Wholesome Hide rawhide by comparison is fresh, shipped by refrigerated trucks to their facility. They are a small company and a lot of times, we have to wait for our order to be made. I can't answer about where the Chinese hides are coming from, but having Arsenic and other toxins does not come as any surprise. Unfortunately, we cannot ship any meat product internationally. I get asked at least once a week. Most countries ban any meat product from entering their country. It all goes back to the hoof and mouth disease years ago. I can only say that I would not consider any other rawhide. 

I have been researching rawhides for the past five years and during my extensive research on how rawhides are made, I always come to same conclusion:  There is only one rawhide company that I trust for healthy, all natural, fresh rawhide chews for your dogs. It is Wholesome Hide. 
If you have been told that rawhide is not safe for your dog, it is because the mass retailers have always carried the over processed,dry and brittle bones from overseas.  
When your dog chews on a Wholesome Hide rawhide bone, he is wetting while he is chewing and softening a fresh hide, that is totally unlike any rawhide you have given before.

Author: Ann Shevin, President
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