Some time last May, in North Grimston, North Yorkshire, England, a little West Highland terrier named Joey got with a Rottweiler named Zara, who is more than twice his size, resulting an unusual litter of puppies, born on July 11, 2013.
Elwood died unexpectedly on Thanksgiving Day, November 28, 2013. The mixed-breed Chinese Crested and Chihuahua gained notoriety in 2007, when he was crowned the World’s Ugliest Dog in the Sonoma, California canine pageant. He was eight years old.
In 2005, Elwood was nearly euthanized, because he was determined to be too ugly to sell. A friend of the breeder rescued the puppy, and he was adopted by Karen Quigley when he was nine months old.
The World’s Ugliest Dog was arguably also the world’s most beloved dog. He appeared at more than 200 fundraisers, which raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for animal rescue organizations.
The 2013 New York City Marathon was a sweep for the Kenyans, as Geoffrey Mutai, 32, placed first at 2 hours, 8 minutes, 24 seconds. Priscah Jeptoo, 29, was the winner of the women’s race with a time of 2 hours, 25 minutes, 7 seconds. It was also a triumph for the men and women of the New York City Police Department, who kept 47,000 runners and thousands of onlookers safe.
This year’s enhanced security included 43 bomb-sniffing dogs, police scuba divers and surveillance helicopters.
Norman, a three-year-old French Sheepdog from Canton, Georgia, has been mistaken for a large boy in a dog suit. But this dog is all canine, and he loves riding a scooter.
In Marietta, Georgia, on July 12, 2013, Norman broke the Guinness World Record for the fastest dog on a scooter by riding 30 meters unassisted in 20.75 seconds, comfortably breaking the old record of 30 seconds.
My apartment in Manhattan was laid out like train cars. It had a small narrow living room in front, behind it was a tiny bedroom, and just behind that was the galley kitchen. The advantage to being on the ground floor was that we had a patch of open space beyond the kitchen, accessible by crawling out of a low window. The window was secured with a burglar gate.
We had no air conditioning, so one summer day, before leaving for work in the morning, I opened the kitchen window just a bit, so that my Samoyed would have the benefit of whatever breeze there might have been. The burglar gate was locked securely.
While I was gone, the dog squeezed himself out under the burglar gate and through the narrow gap between the open window and the sill. Not only did he find a way to get out of the backyard, but he proceeded to go around the corner to the hardware store, where I’m told he relieved himself. Fortunately, the owner of the hardware store was not only a very nice man, he was also my landlord. The dog was actually back in my apartment before I even returned home from work that day. My first clue of the adventure that took place in my absence was the tilted fish bowl and the scraps of white fur stuck in the burglar gate.
Like the Samoyed, the Chow dog has a mass of fur that makes him appear deceptively large. On July 11, 2013, a Chow in Brooklyn wiggled under a child guard, out a window, to find himself trapped on a second-story ledge. He was unable to wiggle back in to safety. Thanks to a patient New York Fire Department communications worker, the dog was rescued from his precarious perch.
The whole incident was caught on video by Brooklyn resident James Morgan, who was walking home when he noticed the dog stuck on the ledge.
Is it just me, or do others think the Orangutans and their handlers at the Smithsonian National Zoo would be better served by spending personal shovel time in First Lady Michelle Obama’s organic garden, rather than staring out of cages and poking at iPad apps?
After participating in the strenuous physical exertion of tilling the soil, how about a picnic? But preferably not eating the greens grown at the White House. (Turns out that while Bill and Hill were living at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave in the 1990′s, the White House lawn — now home to Mrs. Obama’s family farm — was enriched with fertilizer produced from sludge. Like so many things that the Clintons have touched, they left behind a distinctly unpleasant residue.)
Okay, clearly it is more practical to keep the wild primates in their cages and off the White House grounds. After all, bringing out an animal’s inner Brubeck is a more highly evolved use of an App than what can be expected from the behavior of a typical teenager.
Typical Teen Apping Out
The Smithsonian National Zoo has implemented Apps for Apes with the best intentions:
Orangutans are highly intelligent creatures that require mental stimulation to keep from growing bored and depressed. Every orangutan is a unique individual with his or her own particular likes and dislikes, and freedom of choice is critical to their well-being…. With the Apps for Apes project, we propose to introduce Apple iPad technology to orangutans in order to provide them with unlimited enrichment opportunities. The iPad is a perfect device for orangutans, as they have an innate ability to work with touchscreen technology. This has been demonstrated in facilities such as Zoo Atlanta, the Great Ape Trust and the Smithsonian National Zoo. With proper guidance, orangutans will be able to use their devices just like humans do– to spend their time doing things that they enjoy. They will have access to music, musical instruments, cognitive games, art, painting, drawing, photos and videos. Among other things, they will be able to see photos and videos of other orangutans.
Let’s hope that this innovative leap forward in application technology does not lead to any unintended consequences!
Pres Barack Hussein Obama and VP Joseph Biden look at an app on an iPhone. Official WH photo used for satirical purposes only.
Portrait of Barney Bush
by President George W. Bush
Barney, the Scottish Terrier that lived in the White House with President George W. Bush and First Lady Laura Bush, passed away on February 1, 2013, after a battle with lymphoma. Born on September 30, 2000, Barney was the offspring of Coors Whitman (owned by Former EPA Director and New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman). His father was Kelly of Champion Motherwell Stormwarning. His canine survivors include his niece Miss Beazley (by his half-brother Clinton), who resides with President and Mrs. Bush.
President Bush issued the following statement:
Laura and I are sad to announce that our Scottish Terrier, Barney, has passed away. The little fellow had been suffering from lymphoma and after twelve and a half years of life, his body could not fight off the illness.
Barney and I enjoyed the outdoors. He loved to accompany me when I fished for bass at the ranch. He was a fierce armadillo hunter. At Camp David, his favorite activity was chasing golf balls on the chipping green.
Barney guarded the South Lawn entrance of the White House as if he were a Secret Service agent. He wandered the halls of the West Wing looking for treats from his many friends. He starred in Barney Cam and gave the American people Christmas tours of the White House. Barney greeted Queens, Heads of State, and Prime Ministers. He was always polite and never jumped in their laps.
Barney was by my side during our eight years in the White House. He never discussed politics and was always a faithful friend. Laura and I will miss our pal.