Dogs help get, keep children more active
• Looking for a way to get your children off the couch and more active outdoors? A survey of 1,500 people by the Purina company — both those who own dogs and those who don’t — revealed that children raised in families with dogs are 20 percent more likely to spend time in active, outside play than those in families without canine companionship.
• The recent recall of peanut butter due to salmonella contamination is significant to pet owners because it is often used to hide pills, making it easier to get pets to take their medications. More than 30 people in 19 states have been sickened by contaminated products, which all use nuts from New Mexico-based Sunland farms. Updates on the recall and a complete list of affected products are on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s website, FDA.gov. Both dogs and cats can become ill by eating salmonella-contaminated products, and the illness can be transmitted to people from pets.
• While most pet lovers are aware of the challenges of re-homing cats and dogs, relatively few give much thought to parrots in need of new homes. The challenge of caring for these pets is made more difficult because of medical and behavioral issues — and the fact that many parrot species kept as pets have potential life spans as long as human ones. The nonprofit Gabriel Foundation in Colorado (thegabrielfoundation.org) has for years maintained a model shelter and sanctuary for these pets, with a variety of services including lifetime care for parrots who cannot be successfully transitioned to new homes. — Gina Spadafori