Ezine Head
Editor's Note
July 28th, 2011
Volume 2, Issue 8

A BIG hello to you and your furry friends!

Hope your summer is going well and that you and your pets are withstanding the heat so far. This month we’re bringing you some very important information on how to keep your pets safe and we’re sure that you’ll have a ton of great ideas to take away from this month’s issue of The Intelligent Pet e-zine.

Here’s what’s inside:
Believe it or not, chocolate is highly toxic for dogs. Learn how much chocolate can be fatal and what to do if your pet ingests this poisonous ingredient.
Many pet owners are being advised to microchip their dog without knowing all the facts first. BARF World’s pet news correspondent, Evan Price, examines the pros and cons of microchipping and reports back all the facts for you to decide if the risk outweighs the reward.
Do you have a dog that nearly pulls your arm out of its socket every time you go for a walk? Then you have to read Al’s tips on encouraging proper dog walking etiquette and curb those bad dog manners once and for all.
If you thought that humans were the only victims of identity theft, think again! Loyal BARF World customer, Mary Lund shares her dog’s story of mistaken identity with us in this month’s Bark Out Loud section.

By the way - a very happy birthday to all you Leos (and Virgos) out there…I myself am celebrating my birthday this 23rd of August and personally can’t wait to party!

Stay cool (and safe),

Amber Keiper
Marketing Coordinator & Raw Diet Educator
BARF World Inc.

Table Scraps

Raw Knowledge

Good Dog

If Dogs Could Talk

Bark Out Loud

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Pet Alert!

6/27/2011Nestle Purina recalls Dry Cat Food Due To Possible Health Risk.

6/3/2011Bravo! Issues Nationwide Recall of Pigs Ears Because of Possible Salmonella Health Risk

**For a list of current pet food recalls, click HERE.

Mark Your Calendars:

Important August Dates to Remember

  • August 1st, 1990 – Happy Birthday to the World Wide Web. What would we do without you?
  • August 8th – “Sneak Some Zucchini Onto Your Neighbor’s Porch” Night. Grew too many zucchini this summer? Leave some on your neighbor’s porch to enjoy in tomorrow’s morning omelet.
  • August 10th – Happy Birthday Antonio Banderas. We can’t wait for the new “Puss in Boots” movie!
  • August 17th - Happy Birthday to our newest BARF World team member, Al Skender.
  • August 23rd – BARF World’s very own Amber Keiper’s birthday is today…yay!

If Dogs Could Talk

Microchips: Pet Safety Tool…or Dangerous Device?

by Evan Price

So…what is the deal with microchipping?  I suppose that would depend on whom you were to ask. 

Some might tell you that microchips are a cutting-edge way of reconnecting lost pets with their owners.  Microchips are harmless, painless, and reliable.  Most importantly, they provide peace of mind for owners in the event that their pet is lost or stolen - and that thousands of pets have been returned to their owners. 

Others may tell you that microchipping is deceptively dangerous, even potentially fatal and that the hazards of microchipping easily outweigh the benefits.

Microchipping Our Animals

Microchip implants are used in a wide variety of animals including but not limited to: cats, dogs, horses, birds, lizards, snakes…and even in some humans. 

The chip (which is about the size of a grain of long rice) is wrapped in a plastic shell and injected under the skin.  It uses a technology called Passive RFID (Radio Frequency Identification).  It is “passive” because the chip itself has no internal power source.  When the chip receives the electrical signal from a scanner it becomes active and produces an identification number.

Typically, the injection site is the scruff of the animal’s neck, although one of the negative of microchipping is that the chip can migrate to other parts of the body.  This can lead to a false assumption that a pet is “untagged”.  Chips have been known to migrate as far as the muscle above the hind leg, although this is not very common. 

Another complaint is that the needle used for the injection is much larger than needles used for shots, which causes the animal unnecessary pain and stress.  This is often countered by the practice of microchipping a pet when they go in to veterinary office to be spayed/neutered, or for any other operation, requiring anesthesia.

There is a very positive upside to chipping your pet. While it is estimated that 1.8% of untagged cats and 21.9% of untagged dogs are returned to their owners, microchipping our pets raises the number of found pets dramatically to 38.5% and 52.2% respectively.  This keeps expenses down at local animal shelters as well as sparing the lives of thousands of pets who would otherwise be unclaimed and perhaps euthanized.

The major concerns about microchipping are the actual reliability of the chip as well as the possible risk of cancer on or near the injection site.
Also, not all implants use the same radio frequency, so not all scanners will work on every chip. 

Think about it this way: if you have a Panasonic TV in your bedroom and a Sony TV in your living room, you have to make sure that the remote controls match.  Your Sony remote control cannot change the volume on your Panasonic TV. 

Because there are no universal scanners, tagged dogs can still end up being euthanized if the chip is not detectable and/or readable. 

Also, there is no uniform database for storing all the pet identification information.  This means that the animal shelter may not know which database to contact first.

Furthermore, chips can break while inside the dog - although this is rare.  What is more common is for the information to be outdated and the owner of the lost pet unable to be contacted.

There have also been some studies that suggest that implanting these chips can lead to cancer.  While many of these studies have been conducted on mice and rats, cancerous growths have been found in various zoo animals as well. 
  • A 2006 French study conducted on mice showed that 4.1% of the 1,260 mice tested developed cancerous growths at the injection site. 
  • A 1998 study done in the United States showed that more than 10% of the 177 mice tested developed cancer.
  • A 1997 German study showed that 1% of 4,279 mice tested developed cancer. 
While the scientists involved in these studies believed that the disease was a direct result of the microchips, chip manufacturers and the majority of veterinarians have dismissed the notion.  Their belief is that the cancer would have developed in these animals with or without a microchip implant.

There have been a few cases of cancer as well as other fatalities in cats and dogs as well, including a fatal case in 2009 involving a Yorkshire Terrier named “Scotty” who developed epitheliotropic lymphoma at the injection site.  After a cat named “Belkin” developed cancer at his injection site, his owner filed a lawsuit against the chip manufacturer, which is currently pending.  A Chihuahua named “Charlie Brown” bled to death within hours of his injection. In 2004, a cat died suddenly after the injection procedure, and the autopsy revealed that the chip had migrated to the brain stem.

While these are the horror stories associated with microchipping, they represent a minute percentage of the tens of thousands of pets who undergo this procedure. 
As with anything in life, there are risks involved whether you decide to microchip your pet or not.  It is up to you – the pet owner - to do your research and decide what you feel is in the best interest of your own pet. 

Please let us know how you feel about this topic - We can be reached at info@barfworld.com

Until next time, happy BARFing.

Evan Price is a Raw Diet Educator for BARF World Inc.  He is a true dog lover at heart with a particular interest in Daschunds. Evan is also an avid sports enthusiast and bridge player. For more articles like these and to learn more about the benefits of raw food for your pets, sign up for The Intelligent Pet monthly e-zine at www.barfworld.com.

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Good Dog

How NOT to Walk Your Dog

by Al Skender

I am going to share a story with you that I’m sure many of you have witnessed in your past. Whether it happened in the park, mall or beach we have all seen this happen at some point in life.

Two days ago, I was walking in the park with my friend getting some fresh air when I noticed a very tall gentleman - about 6 foot 5 - walking a very cute Chihuahua on the other end of the park.
bad walk

What really caught my eye was that this little dog was pulling REALLY hard on his leash, trying to lead the way while the owner struggled to control his dog. The whole scene was quite funny but it illustrates the importance of properly walking our dogs…and providing them with the necessary amount of exercise they need daily.

We all know how difficult it can be sometimes to find the time (or energy) to go for a daily walk with our beloved pets. So I will share some very useful tips with you where you will become an expert on walking/exercising your dog.

Dog Walking Tip #1

First of all: walk your dog – don’t let your dog walk you. I know this sounds simple but it is a lot harder to achieve when you are physically in the park ready for a walk. Pay close attention to your body’s position in relation to your dog’s. By allowing our dogs to walk in front of us we are reinforcing in the dog’s mind that the dog is “Alpha” (in command) over us. Remember, the leader always goes first. The majority of times this can lead to many behavioral issues that some regard as “temperament” when in fact it is just your dog being confused with his primary role in the relationship.
Good Walk

Did you know that by having your dog walk in front of you, you deprive him of critical mental stimulation and focus? He is not relaxed and focused on following you but instead now has the big responsibility of being the leader. This mental anguish can build up inside of a dog. Many times this can manifest itself in the form of behavioral problems.

When a dog is hyper or high strung it means the dog is not getting the proper amount and/or type of exercise. Therefore, if you ever notice your dog running around the house getting into mischief it is probably due to lack of adequate exercise or boredom.

So the next time your pooch stares at you with his favorite leash in his mouth, remember the wise words of Cesar Millan, the Dog Whisperer: "To your dog, your back yard is like a large fish bowl in which they are trapped inside. Fish swim, birds fly and dogs walk. Having a dog should not be about only fulfilling our human needs – we owe it to our dogs to give them what they instinctually need.

With that said, go out and walk your dogs in any way that you can, keeping them obedient, mentally and emotionally stable, and most importantly healthy.

Al Skender is a Raw Diet Educator for BARF World Inc. He’s a self-proclaimed expert on the German Shepherd breed, owning several of them throughout his life. He enjoys being outdoors and prefers it to being stuck in front of the television, unless The Office or CSI is on.  For more articles like these and to learn more about the benefits of raw food for your pets, sign up for The Intelligent Pet monthly e-zine at www.barfworld.com.

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Raw Knowledge

Chocolate: A Tasty Treat Pets Die For

by Robert Mueller

The other day I ran across an article that I found quite interesting. I think it is common knowledge to most pet lovers that chocolate is potentially harmful to a dog or cat. What I found quite interesting though was just how dangerous it really is.

Chocolate contains Theobromine, which is toxic to dogs and cats. It only takes 45 or more milligrams of theobromine (per pound of your dog’s weight) to reach a potentially lethal dose.

The following chart shows the amount of various chocolate products that would need to be consumed to reach toxic levels along with the theobromine content of the products:

Theobromine   Lethal Dose Lethal Dose Lethal Dose
(mg/g)   (20 lb. dog) (50 lb. dog) (80 lb. dog)
Cocoa 20.3 1.6 ounces 3.9 ounces 6.3 ounces
Unsweetened Baking Chocolate 13 2.5 ounces 6.2 ounces 9.9 ounces
Fudge 6.5 4.9 ounces 12.3 ounces 19.7 ounces
Semi-sweet Chocolate 5.6 5.7 ounces 14.3 ounces 22.9 ounces
Milk Chocolate 1.5  21.4 ounces 53.4 ounces 84.3 ounces

I found this chart to be quite helpful in times of trying to determine a lethal dose in case of ingestion by your dog for these various chocolate products. It is one thing to issue a caution but to have the actual amounts may come in very handy to the owner in an emergency situation. 

Symptoms of Chocolate Poisoning in Dogs
    the cupcake!
  • Abdominal Pain & Difficulty Breathing
  • Diarrhea and Vomiting (may contain blood)
  • Difficulty Standing/Walking & Lethargy
  • Elevated Heart Rate
  • Excessive Thirst & Urination (may contain blood)
  • Muscle Spasms & Seizures
  • Panting & Drooling
  • Restlessness & Other Unusual Behavior

In every instance of chocolate poisoning it is HIGHLY advised that you seek immediate veterinary attention.
If your pet has recently consumed the chocolate and has not yet vomited, you can induce vomiting by using activated charcoal or hydrogen peroxide (this is something we made sure to include in our soon-to-be-released K-911 Pet First Aid Kit).

Animal Poison Hotlines

ASPCA National Animal Poison Control Center
1-888-4ANI-HELP (1-888-426-4435)

*$65.00 per case, billed to caller's credit card.
*Follow-up calls can be made for no additional charge by dialing 1-888-299-2973.
*There is no charge when the call involves a product covered by the Animal Product Safety Service.

Pet Poison Helpline

*$35.00 per incident, staffed 24-hours a day.
*24-hour service available throughout North America for pet owners and veterinary professionals who require assistance with treating a potentially poisoned pet.

You might want to pass this information on to all of your pet loving friends so that they may potentially be able to save an animal’s life because of having this knowledge.
Thank goodness that we humans don’t have the same toxic lethal levels from chocolate especially since I am a major choco-holic!

Robert Mueller, BSc, Pharm. is a registered pharmacist, author of “Living Enzymes: The World’s Best Kept Pet Food Secret”, and co-developer of BARF World’s BARF diets patties, nuggets and supplements - the first company to make the Biologically Appropriate Raw Foods (BARF) diet conveniently available to animals everywhere.  He and his wife love to travel around the world with their dog, Moxie – a Yorkshire Terrier/Maltese mix. For more articles like these and to learn more about the benefits of raw food for your pets, sign up for “The Intelligent Pet” monthly e-zine at www.barfworld.com.

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Bark Out Loud

Pet Identity Theft


A funny story from Mary Lund, a loyal BARF World customer:

We received a call from an animal hospital in Orange (about a 40 min. drive from our house) after leaving our home to go shopping.  We had left the dog locked up (as he is a know escape artist when we leave him alone). Our daughter, Nancy, had called to say she was going over to pick up Max since he doesn't like to be left alone. 

About 45 minutes later we receive this call from the animal hospital in Orange telling us they had our dog.  He was found on Tustin Avenue, a major street running through traffic. They had checked the ID chip embedded in his skin and it had all of our information on it.  She described the dog as a white poodle, weighing about 11lb, (Max's exact weight), and well behaved with a missing collar. Everything fit, but I didn't feel right about it since Nancy said she was taking Max. How could Nancy have lost the dog?? 

We were really feeling sick with worry until we called Nancy and she said the dog was sitting right beside her (of couse, I insisted on speaking with Max, who gave me his little yelp of joy).  I felt much better and called the animal hospital back to let them know they did not have our dog.  I called the ID company and they explained that they had reversed all of our information with the other dog.

Originally, both dogs had gone to the same animal hospital on the same day to be neutered and had both gone to the same shelter where we found Maxie.  It ended up being a good thing as now we can have his chip corrected.  The other dog was returned to their owner, who had been looking for him for 3 days and were so happy to have found Fossie. 

Our dog is like our family, so we were so happy to get home and have him jump in our laps and give us a big kiss. 

All is well that ends well...


Wags of Wisdom:

"Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole." ~ Roger Caras

"You think dogs will not be in heaven? I tell you, they will be there long before any of us" ~ Robert Louis Stevenson

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Monthly Pet Laugh

by Christopher Hampson

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