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  • A Prayer for Dog Owners: A Devotional for Those Who Love Canines

    By Dr. Andy Roark |

    ThinkstockFor me, medicine has always had a deeply spiritual component. I often say little prayers for my patients and their owners, and it is for this reason that I started to think about what I would pray for if I were a mere pet owner, and not a veterinarian asking for medical miracles. Here's what I, as a dog lover, would say:

    Dear Lord,

    Thank you for the gift of canine companionship. Let me always strive to be the person my dog thinks I am, even if that level of awesomeness is completely unattainable.

    Please remind me of the innocence of dogs and of my responsibilities to those I take into my home. Forgive me if I get frustrated with my dog, feed him the occasional table scrap or make him wear a holiday costume for a few quick photos. I promise I will try my hardest to always be a good owner, friend and family member.

    SEE ALSO: 5 Once-Popular Dog Breeds That Are Missed

    Lord, during puppyhood, please help him figure out the

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  • 10 Insects and Other Creatures Dangerous to Cats & Dogs

    By Sally Deneen |

    Nearly every day, a frantic caller contacts the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center with a poison complaint relating to an outdoor insect or critter, often toads. As warm weather sees more dogs and cats venturing into the great outdoors, do you know what hazards are lurking in your region?

    Vetstreet interviewed leading wildlife and veterinary toxicology experts who identified the most common and lethal threats to your pets as well as in what parts of the country they reside.

    SEE ALSO: 8 Most Dangerous Plants for Cats and Dogs

    Bees1. Bees

    You may hear a yelp from your dog and then within 20 minutes, see his face swell in size. The cause behind the swollen face may be a reaction to a bee sting. "Fatal reactions are rare, but they do occur," says Dr. Russak. Most dogs tend to have a mild reaction, and often a first-time bee sting causes no trouble. It's the subsequent stings that can be severe. "Bee stings, if you can avoid them, are

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  • 10 Chattiest Dog Breeds

    By Staff

    We asked 218 veterinary professionals which popular breeds they deemed most talkative, and these ten were at the top of their list. Although it's important to keep in mind that many dogs can be louder than average if allowed to become nuisance barkers, these dogs are known for being rather vocal.

    German Shepherd DogNo. 10: German Shepherd (photo credit: Sally Anne Thompson, Animal Photography/

    The German Shepherd Dog is a natural protector who has been known to perform pretty much any job available to dogs. She is intelligent, fearless, athletic and needs an owner who will give her focused attention and training - otherwise, she can end up lonely, bored, destructive and loud.

    * Learn More About the German Shepherd Dog

    No. 9: Basset Hound

    The good-natured Basset Hound needs to do little more than look your way with his pleading gaze to get what he wants. His short legs and long body make him less active than his fellow hounds, but he

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  • Lost Dog Reunited with Family After 6 Years

    By Amy Sinatra Ayres |

    April Helland hugs her dog MaisyIt was six years ago when Maisy the Beagle followed the young boys in her family into the woods near their Tennessee home, and didn't come out.

    The Helland family searched the woods, posted flyers and prayed for Maisy to find her way back. But it wasn't until this week that Chad Helland got a call from the Young Williams Animal Center, saying that animal control had found the now 12-year-old dog out wandering and tracked down the Hellands through her microchip. "It was probably the most shocking phone call I've ever gotten in my life," Chad Helland said. Maisy appeared to have been cared for while she was away, and may have gotten away from another family. The Hellands had an emotional reunion with her, and are glad to have the senior dog back. "I feel so blessed to have her back. For my own comfort," said April Helland. "I can hold her and tell her thank you for all those years that she was good to us." - Watch it at Tennessee's WBIR

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  • 14 Puppies Who Love National Puppy Day

    By Megan Winter |

    In case you haven't heard, March 21 is a very special day - it's National Puppy Day! The holiday was created nine years ago to not only celebrate the joy, love and cuteness young pups bring into our lives, but also to help save orphaned puppies all over the world.In honor of puppies everywhere, we've found 14 precious pooches to share with you.

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  • Polar Bear Twins Make Long Awaited Debut

    By Amy Sinatra Ayres

    Fourteen-week-old brother and sister polar bear cubs made their first public appearance on Wednesday.It's double the cuteness in Germany! The 14-week-old twin polar bear cubs who made headlines with the color video of their birth and a clip of them opening their eyes for the first time, had their media debut at the Hellabrunn Zoo in Munich on Wednesday.

    The brother and sister bears, who haven't been named yet, romped around in their outdoor enclosure with their mom, 7-year-old Giovanna, as about 100 reporters watched.

    "She is a very young mother and everything is excellent," said the zoo's Helmut Kern. The cubs squinted in the bright light, and put their paws into the cool water in their exhibit for the first time. - Read it and watch it at CBS News

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  • 10 Reasons Guinea Pigs Make Great Pets

    By Dr. Laurie Hess l

    ThinkstockThinking of getting a pet but don't want the responsibility of a cat or a dog? How about a guinea pig? March is Adopt a Rescued Guinea Pig month, so what better time to get a new pet and also help save a life?

    RELATED: 8 Surprisingly Misnamed Animals

    Guinea pigs, or "cavies," are short-tailed, rough-haired South American rodents (family Caviidae). Guinea pigs have always been one of the exotic pets I recommend most, especially for families considering a pet for the first time. Why are guinea pigs one of my favorites? Here are 10 reasons guinea pigs make great pets:

    1. Guinea pigs are hardy. When cared for and fed properly, guinea pigs are generally very healthy animals. Like other pets, they can be prone to particular diseases - for example, dental disease and bladder stones in their case - but these conditions may be prevented to some degree with proper nutrition and regular medical checkups. Also, since guinea pigs are from cool

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  • Tasmanian Devils Threatened by Strange Cancer

    By Dr. Ann Hohenhaus l

    ThinkstockFor those of us who grew up watching Saturday morning cartoons, Warner Bros.' character Taz, the omnivorous, whirling, swirling cartoon caricature of a Tasmanian devil, was a delight. Already long on the endangered species list, however, the real Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii) now risks extinction because of a strange form of contagious cancer.

    RELATED: Baby Tasmanian Devils Get Exams

    A carnivorous marsupial about the size of a small dog, the devil is found only on the island of Tasmania, located off the southeast coast of Australia. The disease, which was first documented in the 1990s, has been killing the animals at an alarming rate. It attacks young devils at 2 to 3 years of age - long before they have an opportunity to reproduce. In areas where the disease has been found, up to 90 percent of the population has been decimated. The devils' rapid decline has led to aggressive - but so far only marginally effective - efforts to

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  • 10 Strangest Cat Behaviors Explained

    By Laura Cross |

    Cat and MouseThere's no denying that cats are excellent companions, but sometimes they do something that leaves you scratching your head in total confusion. Yet it's these special behaviors, like affectionate head-butting and their penchant for cardboard boxes, that make us love them so much.

    To help you better understand your elusive feline, we rounded up 10 cat behaviors that people commonly consider mysterious. You'll find that many of these habits aren't weird at all for cats - they're normal.

    SEE ALSO: 7 Comments That Make Cat Owners Cringe

    1. Head-Butts You

    When a kitty head-butts you, it's just his way of saying, "Greetings, I trust you and feel safe." It's also one of his methods of sharing facial pheromones with you. Behaviorists actually call this curious behavior "bunting." If your kitty doesn't bunt, it's nothing to worry about - he just might not be the head-butting type.

    2. Brings You "Presents"

    It's what you've always wanted: a

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  • Doris Day Devotes 90th Birthday to Animals

    By Amy Sinatra Ayres |

    Actress Doris Day hopes to raise $90,000 for her animal foundation for her 90th birthday.The legendary actress Doris Day says she's not much for birthdays, but she's "all about the four-leggers." So, for her 90 th birthday on April 3, she's asking her fans to make a donation to her Doris Day Animal Foundation, or to bid on the items in an online charity auction.

    There will also be a live auction at the star's birthday celebration in her hometown of Carmel, Calif. Up for bidding are items signed by Paul McCartney and Tony Bennett, a Stella McCartney Falabella bag, as well as a handbag and scarf from Day's personal wardrobe.

    "Turning 90 is a milestone, for me and for the Foundation, and we're setting a goal of $90,000 in donations," Day said. "There is so much work still to do to rescue animals, and to inform people about the importance of spaying and neutering their pets," Day said. The online auction is open until April 1. - Bids can be made at the Doris Day Animal Foundation Online Auction.

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