Happy news about animals

You’ve heard of dogs who can track down suspects or find drugs with their noses.

Dogs can be trained to provide all sorts of assistance to human beings. This one sniffs out diabetes in its owner.

Like most 8-year-olds, Nolan Peters loves playing ball with his dog.

But, his black lab is more than just a playmate. Nova is specially trained to detect changes in Nolan’s blood sugar.

If Nolan smells different, Nova alerts Nolan’s mother.

“Especially if his sugar is really out of wack, if its really high she goes crazy, she was nibbling at his toes one day,” says Chris Peters, Nolan’s mother.

Every time Nova’s right about a change in Nolan’s blood sugar she gets a reward.

Peters adds, “that’s the only time she gets a treat. Now she knows that when he smells differently than he’s supposed to, she barks or comes to the side of my bed and sort of walks around until I wake up.”

Before Nova, Chris Peters had to wake her son up in the middle of the night, every night to test his blood sugar.

This black lab restored her sleep and her sanity.

“She is able to put our minds at ease. We’re able to rest soundly at night,” says Peters.

And, Nolan is able to live life more like a healthy 8-year-old.

Dogs like Nova cost between $10,000-$20,000. But, the Juvenile Diabetes Association is auctioning one off at a fundraiser in May.

A young beagle stranded on a mountain ledge proved a bark can be better than a bite by repeatedly howling until help arrived.

A six-man team from the Blount County Fire Department trekked two hours through thick undergrowth on Tuesday to reach a ridge 30 feet above the dog near the Foothills Parkway, bordering the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Then firefighter John Matlock rappelled down to the foot-wide ledge where the dog was stranded, overlooking a sheer drop of about 125 feet below.

Matlock tucked the pooch in a red bag and, with help from his fellow firefighters, brought the dog back to the top. The beagle was thin and thirsty but OK.

A group of cheerleaders from Heritage High School had camped across the highway the night before and complained they couldn’t get any sleep because of the dog’s howls.

After watching the rescue, they did what cheerleaders do. They cheered.

The dog’s owner, Katie Wilkinson of Walland, claimed the dog Wednesday after he had been taken to an animal shelter. She said the beagle disappeared March 9.

The dog’s name is Hass, short for Hasenfeffer, a German rabbit stew.

Randy Ball, who lives nearby, said he’d heard the dog’s howls through the woods for four days. It was Ball and property owner Max Walker, grandfather of one of the cheerleaders, who decided Tuesday to mount the rescue and call in the firefighters.

Ball said he figures the beagle, which had a collar but no tags, became stuck on the ledge while chasing a deer or other animal.

After deciding to jump into the Grand Haven channel Wednesday afternoon, a dog needed help from the Grand Haven Department of Public Safety to get out.

The dog was being walked around 5:30 p.m. in front of the American Legion when it jumped into the water after some ducks, according to police.

When police arrived, they threw the dog a rope while another officer suited up to enter the water to rescue the dog, police said. The dog grabbed the rope and police were able to pull it toward the side of the channel. The dog eventually lost the rope, so police threw the dog a life jacket, which the dog was able to climb onto until a GHDPS officer was able to help the dog out of the channel.

The dog was in the water for about 10 minutes.

The dog was wrapped in a blanket and placed in the front of one of the emergency vehicles to warm up, police said.

Police lost a red life jacket in the process of the rescue, and are asking that it is returned if it is found.

Alaskan author Pam Flowers made a two day-plus car trip to South Lyon for one reason — the kids.

“I really like to do this because afterward the kids send you letters, and a couple kids will say ‘You inspired me,'” Flowers said. “It makes me feel good to have that affect.”

Flowers will speak and present a slideshow at Sayre Elementary today and at Hardy and Dolsen Elementary Friday as a part of March is Reading Month. Last week, she spoke at Bartlett and Salem, where the students were fascinated from start to finish.

Flowers spoke about her trip across the Arctic Ocean with her eight sled dogs, and about one dog in particular, Anna. Her book, “Big Enough Anna: The Little Sled Dog Who Braved the Arctic,” was being read by students at Bartlett prior to her arrival.

They had not finished the book, and Flowers was sure to provide the dramatic and heroic ending. The title character in the book, Anna, was a small dog who had to outwork other dogs to earn her spot on the team, and she did just that.

“A guy said to me, ‘She is not going to last a week out there and neither are you,'” Flowers told the students.

All the students oohed and aahed at the pictures of her dogs pulling the sled across the snow or just relaxing after a long day of work.

Flowers’ trip took 11 months because she was stranded on an island for five and a half months because warm weather melted the ocean. And she almost didn’t make it to the island because the ice continued to crack beneath her and the dogs.

“The hardest part was when the ice was breaking,” she said. “I thought we were going to die.”

Flowers answered questions from students following her presentation. Most of them were about her dogs, especially Anna.

Only three of her dogs from the trip in 1993 are still alive, Anna being one of them.

Dog Rescued From Open Manhole

Author: Dora | Filed under: Dog & Puppy

Firefighters responding to a call for help rescued a dog who fell in a sewer.

Britney Welter and her friend were both walking their dogs when the 4-year-old black Lab fell down an open sewer in the Cook County Forest Preserve in Oak Forest.

The girls told police they were running from coyotes when the dog dropped through the open manhole.

Welter said her dog was not injured in the fall.

The fire chief said he’s not sure why the sewer cap was left open, but they have resecured the lid.

“Thank God it wasn’t the owner, because the girls were running here … and, as she said, it could have been her as easily as it was the dog,” said Oak Forest fire chief Lindsay Laycoax.

Since undergoing surgery to correct his paralysis, Opie has been staying at the Florida Veterinary Specialists and undergoing daily physical therapy sessions on an underwater treadmill.

The sessions start with Opie’s team of physical therapists hoisting his body into a large tub. They turn the water on, and let it come up to Opie’s neck. As his 78 pound body begins to float, Opie gets to experience a feeling of weightlessness as his rehab team moves his joints and massages his muscles.

“He can only handle this for a very short time,” says Dr. Felicity Talbot, the veterinarian in charge of Opie’s physical therapy. After about 3 minutes, Opie’s team takes him out of the tub.

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In the next several weeks, Dr. Talbot expects Opie to be strong enough to endure the underwater therapy twice a day. She hopes he’ll be able to walk again in the coming months.

The $45,000 underwater treadmill was paid for through donations to the Florida Veterinary Specialists Charitable Foundation.




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