Paws for a Moment by Bonny Corbeil

Bonny with her furry friends.

Doggy Data

Wagapalooza, the Animal Care Center’s annual fund raiser and “Family Fun Dog Show Extraordinaire” on May 12 from 5 to 8 p.m., is a month away.

St. John residents and their dogs are also invited to come out to the ACC’s Earth Day presentation on April 20. The ACC’s goal is to introduce the island’s personal best furry friends to St. John’s school children in conjunction with teaching responsible dog ownership.

These facts, along with the many positive responses I have received from folks on the column on cat facts, suggest dog facts are in order. These can help pet owners understand their dogs as well as fun reasons why pet owners are so enthralled by this incredible relationship!

This may also be just what a dog owner needs to get committed to learning that special trick for the Wagapalooza event!
Dog Facts:

• One year in a human life is seven to a dog isn’t exactly true. It is more accurate as follows: at one year a dog is equivalent to 16 human years; at two, 24 human years; at three, 30 human years. For every dog year after that, add four human years.

• There are approximately 58 million dogs in the world and 701 types of pure breeds; only one dog is barkless — the Basenji — and it yodels and cleans itself like a cat.

• Contrary to popular belief, dogs do not sweat by salivating; they sweat through the pads of their feet!

• Dogs are mentioned 14 times in the Bible; they have been domesticated for more than 10,000 years!

• Dogs can hear sounds which are too faint for humans to hear; as well as at a higher frequency. Their hearing is so good they depend on hearing more than sight, to navigate their world.

• Dogs eyes have large pupils, giving them a wide field of vision, making it easy for them to follow moving objects. Dogs are not color blind but see better in low lighted areas.

• Dogs have fewer taste buds than people. It is the smell that attracts them to food. Scientists have discovered recently that dogs can smell autism in children.

• Dalmatian puppies are born white, with their spots developing as they mature (the fireman’s dog).

• Every known dog has a pink tongue, except the Chow, whose tongue is black.

• The heaviest dog weighed 319 pounds; the tallest, a Great Dane, stood 41 inches high; the smallest, a Yorkie, 2.5 inches.

• The oldest breed of dog native to North America is the Chihuahua and it has the longest life-span; the oldest dog died at a recorded 29 years.

• Every year, $1.5 billion is spent on pet food — four times what is spent on baby food; 39 percent of owners have more pictures of their dogs than mates.

• French Poodles did not originate in France. They were originally used for hunting in Europe. Their coats were a hindrance in swimming, so the shearing began. The pom-pom feet remained to protect against rheumatism from the cold; colored ribbons were added for dog identification.

• Dogs’ whiskers are touch-sensitive hairs called vibrissae found on the muzzle below the jaws and above the eyes. They can actually sense tiny changes in airflow.

• Sadly, each shelter in the U.S.A. is forced to destroy 30,000 cats and dogs due to overpopulation. This is why pets must be spayed and neutered; and homeless pets must be adopted.

• Korea’s Poshintang-dog meat soup is a popular item on summertime menus, despite outcry from other nations. It is believed to improve male virility; heal ailments and improve complexions. (This one is a little disconcerting, but none the less a fact!)

• Survivors of the Titanic included a Pekingese and a Pomeranian; an estimated one million dogs are primary beneficiaries in their owners’ will!

• It is a fact that people who own pets live longer, have less stress, and have fewer heart attacks.

• While small dogs are gaining popularity, big dogs are still the “top dogs!”

• Dogs have the emotional equivalence to a two-year-old child which is why we love them so, and why they feel like our “children!”

Want to help with Wagapalooza on Saturday, May 12, either to set-up early, help during the show from 5 to 8 p.m. or help clean up after the show?

 We need positive energy and input to make this a huge success for St. John’s needy animals.

Please call me at 693-5874 or 626-4506 or e-mail me to help us care at