Dog Life


Sitting Pretty: Dog Portraiture

The history of animals as artistic subject matter goes as far back as
the bison paintings in the Lascaux caves in Dordogne, France. Artist
Wendy Grossman notes, “[Since] the dog has shared its life with humans,
from prehistoric times to now, they have been depicted in carvings and
paintings in early Egyptian, Greek, Mesopotamian and Roman art.” more

Mutts Doing Math: Not So Far-Fetched?

Some people dismiss the idea that dogs can do the most rudimentary type
of quantitative reasoning, such as determining which of two plates
contains more kibble. Early researchers claimed that dogs couldn’t
discriminate between a plate with three and another with eight kibbles.
The studies demonstrating this, however, were flawed, since the dogs’
strategy turned out to be simply “Grab the food from the closest
plate.” More careful studies have used pairs of panels, each of which
had dots painted on it. Dogs were trained to always press the panel
with the largest (or smallest) number of dots. The training was slow
but the dogs did learn this task. more
Quiz: What Kind of Dog Are You?

Quiz: What Kind of Dog Are You?

Your breed revealed! more

All in a Day's Woof

Water cooler conversation is changing these days. "Rex's breath reeks
of liver." "I know, he's so delicious. But could he have his head any
further up Buster's butt? I mean, come on!" "Now, now, don't get your
hackles up. He's just bucking for a promotion to top dog." First they
were pets. Then they were family members. Now they're becoming
colleagues. Dogs in the workplace are an increasingly common
phenomenon. As dog lovers, we welcome this advance. But does your pet
really belong in the office? With a little planning, a good portion of
common sense, and sensitivity to your colleagues, the answer is a
resounding "Yes!" more

Is Your Dog a Genius?

Most people are interested in how intelligent their dog is. While there are predictable differences based upon the dog's breed (for example, Border Collies are a lot smarter and more trainable than Bulldogs), there is a lot of variability within each breed. This means that some Border Collies might be rather slow-thinking, while some Bulldogs might be college material. There are some well-documented tests for the general mental abilities of dogs (such as the one described in my book, The Intelligence of Dogs), and all such tests include measures of a dog's memory. more

Are Dogs The New Grandchildren?

Family dynamics today are more complex than just Mom plus Dad plus two children. Many people are divorced or opt for a single lifestyle. Others remain childless, by chance or by choice. It is a lifestyle that makes close family relationships the exception rather than the norm. Into this void step our dogs, ready and willing to accept all offers of adoration and spoiling. More than simply companions, dogs are considered children in many households. So it follows that a fur kid's family tree branches out to include aunties, uncles, cousins, and, of course, the ultimate dispenser of spoiled affection-grandparents. more

To Bring, Or Not To Bring The Dog

Picture it. The rolling lawns of a Beverly Hills estate in California decked with tables for a posh afternoon English tea party. Chilled champagne with a plump strawberry is the drink du jour and the sounds of social chitchat and laughter are offset by a string quartet providing background mood music. Suddenly, a red convertible zooms up the driveway and out jumps a boisterous Golden Retriever barking madly. He rushes to the nearest white Iceberg rose bush and lifts his leg, narrowly missing the cellist. His pet parent, after handing her car keys to the valet, ambles over, pats her pup on the head and tells him to "go play" before heading off to greet her hostess and mingle with the other guests. more

Bow Vows

Dog Weddings more

Do You Look Like Your Dog?

At a gathering of dog owners, I found myself sitting at a table with a woman who was explaining, "You can always tell which member of a family actually picked...more

Dog Park Discourse 101: Conversation Starters

Let's face it, modern dog owners are just as guilty as first-time parents when it comes to rambling on and on about their "kids." And while a good poop horror story makes for conversational common ground at any canine-centric soiree, why not show your range? The following cocktail party cheat-sheet highlights dogs that have made a significant impact on our common culture. A few minutes studying this list and you'll soon prove that it's possible to impress even the finest pedigreed pooch (and his/her sexy owner) with your best trick: speak! more


Dog of the Week!

Meet: Beauty