Wednesday, May 18, 2011

War Dogs

Anyone who knows anything about me knows I have a passion for dogs. I love dogs of all kinds, even the mean stray ones. I really believe a dog is truly good unless trained to be otherwise, and by trained I mean kicked, and ignored and abandoned. Part of my work in the Peace Corps is to introduce and educate my community about Americans and one of the ways I do this is by taking Sophie with me everywhere. I am not so comfortable when people in my community ask me in depth questions about my own life, but I light up any time I get to share about Sophie. And through time Sophie has turned out to be quite a popular pup, I even think it's getting to her head a bit, as now she barks at me whenever I am not paying attention to her.

Every day I take Sophie outside my building and let her run off some pent up anxiety that she gets from me leaving her at home while I work. While many people see her and run the other way, she has made friends with a lot of people from the building. Most notably the bottom floor neighbor. This neighbor just adores Sophie, and always comes out to say hello to her. She brings her water when she is thirsty and bread when she wants to spoil her.

Well the cutest thing happened today. As Sophie was off in the distance smelling things and doing whatever it is puppies do, she looked up and saw my little old neighbor. She bounded across rocks and debris and came running up to the neighbor. “Sophik, my little favorite” the women greets Sophie with a pet on the head. She then tells Sophie to go run off. When Sophie gets too far for my comfort, she pats me on the hand and tells me not to worry. That house doesn’t have dogs, Sophie will be fine.

She then tells me that a few nights ago she cooked a whole chicken for her family. When they were done with the chicken there were parts that they didn’t eat such as the stomach and the bones. At the time she had thought to give them to her little Sophie but it was too late in the night to come knock on my door so she threw them away. She then asked me if Sophie would have liked them!!! It was honestly the sweetest thing ever. I have to admit the way to my heart is through my dog. If you are good to her I will love you forever!!

So anyways I thought about all this tonight because I saw this article:,0

I can't wait to print these out and use them in a class next year about animals.


  1. -No chicken bones for dogs as those kind of bones might hurt the dog.
    -Jealousy: Intelligent pet dogs can be very jealous; I had a relative that had a small bet dog, when she had a child, the dog could not take it--she dropped dead (committed suicide) after a while when she could not get the attention that she was used to because her owner turned all her attention to her new baby.
    -Did you read Jack London's book "The White Fang"? (I hope I got the title right but) It is about a dog that is turned to a killer dog by harsh
    treatment and beatings and made to hate everything. The hero of the book rescues the killer dog and by love and care restores him to a loving normal dog.
    -Armenian families in general do not like or love dogs because they consider it stupid to waste their love on a pet, they give and reserve ALL their love to their human children and for family bonding, and I agree with them.
    -Dogs get attached to whomever gives them food, even a piece of cracker is appreciated.

  2. Alyssa jan, fowl bones have the tendency to get stuck in the throats of dogs if eaten by them and that would be a problem as you need to rush the dog to veterinarian to take the bone out.

    In the link of the article that you put for the war-dogs you need to make a small correction in order for it to work: at the end between the two zeros it should be . and not ,
    It worked for me after I changed , to .
    Take care and happy dogy days! papik

  3. The Armenian Gampr is the world's oldest dog breed

    There was an endemic species of dogs on the the Armenian Plateau. Petrographic records of dogs have been found in Armenian Plateau from as early as 15-12,000 BC.

    Noah brought with him into ancient Armenia from the antediluvian world by the ark that landed on highlands of Ararat, what is known as the Armenian wolfhound Gampr, or mountain dog, the Armenian word "Gampr" means "watchdog".

    In April 2011, the Breed committee of the International Kennel Union (IKU) officially recognized the Armenian wolfhound Gampr as Armenia's national dog breed.

    One of the main traits of Gampr dog is its ability to adapt independently and arrive at a proper decision. If the Gampr dog sees that you need its help, it will protect you. If the Gampr understands that you do not need its assistance, it will not protect you. The Gamprs are very tied to people, especially those dogs that live in human houses, because they feel themselves a family or pack member. Gamprs differ by their vital capacity, independence, mind, strong self-preservation instinct, ability of the trustworthy defense and protection of livestock, and exclusive friendliness to humans.

  4. For pets:
    I have several dogs, and no matter what, they always have a flea problem each year. I have used the expensive vet poisons, both external (Frontline) and advantix (internal). They do work although they are VERY expensive especially when you have several pets. These treatments, (like any other including the one I will recommend here) have to be repeated when the dog starts scratching again.

    My treatment? Liquid DAWN dish soap [DAWN is a brand of dish-washing liquid, but apparently any dish-washing brand liquid or soap will do]. Dont laugh, because when you bathe the dog (good luck with cats, lol) You will find the dead body of every flea that was on him in the bottom of the container you washed him in. guaranteed. DEAD, and in the 3-5 minutes it takes to give him a bath.

    Procedure-- I use a deep sink in the laundry room. You can use whatever dings your chime. For my large dogs, I skip the sink, and use a garden hose.

    1- Beginning along the spine, thoroughly (and slowly) soak the animal through to the skin. Be sure to get the underbelly and legs/tail, dripping wet. (Fleas hunker down out of the hair and onto the skin when the host is wet)

    2- Spread a generous amount of dawn down the animals spinal bone from the head to the tail (maybe one for small dogs and a couple tablespoons full for larger dogs. Beware, a little goes a very long way.

    3- Using your hands and fingers work the soap into a thick lather at the spine, and scratch with your fingernails against the lay of the fur to get the lather to the skin. Work the legs, neck, face and tail the same way. Of course, be careful around the eyes.

    4- When the critter is well lathered, Begin a SLOW rinse at the backbone, allowing the suds to run on the skin under the belly and down the legs and tail. Then, if you want, or if it is an inside dog, just towel dry the outside of the fur. Don't worry about super-rinsing, or getting all the soap residue completely off. The dog will take care of that.

    5- Count the dead fleas. Convinced yet? Notice his lack of scratching?

    If you have severe flea problem, you may have to repeat the bath in 2-3 days, but eventually, you will get them all..

    The garden/houseplants, etc:

    Recycle a spray bottle (or buy one). Use ONE teaspoon-full of DAWN liquid per quart of water. (preferably rain water not tap water-depending on where you live and the lack of chemicals in your tap water). Spray the plants in the evening (bright sun seems to reduce effectiveness) Lasts several days, but Repeat after rain.

    I have used it for years on all my garden plant bug infestations.
    works great on roses, peach trees tomatoes, cukes, cabbage, beans, turnips etc.

    I really don't know whats in dawn, but it does not harm human skin. Just wash the veggies before you eat them, i guess..

    PS: Being a cheapskate, I have tried all the cheaper knockoffs and dollar store brands I can find. THEY DO NOT WORK, at least as well and consistently as DAWN.

    And NO- I have no financial interest in dawn's company, lol

    Have fun, and a (reasonably poison, chem free garden and household..

  5. This might be of interest for your plans in promotion of dogs in presentation to your students. You may delete it after saving.
    Armenia: Yerevan Activists Promote Humane Solution to Stray Dog Crisis by Liana Aghajanian, June 29, 2011

    Dog boutiques and animal ownership have risen in the last few years in Armenia, even as the country grapples with the issue of stray dogs. Thousands are roaming the streets of the capital of Yerevan, posing a safety threat to residents.

    Authorities have dealt with the problem by periodically culling the stray dog population, rounding them up and shooting them. In recent months, however, animal rights activists have agitated for a more humane approach to canine control. Dozens of activists, including representatives from animal organizations like the Center of Stray Animals Protection, rallied in front of the National Assembly building in early June to promote their cause. In a letter addressed to Yerevan Mayor Karen Karapetyan, the activists urged city officials to develop an initiative to spay and neuter dogs, instead of killing them.

    “If we don't solve this as soon as possible, the situation is only going to get worse,” said Nare Aramian, the Armenian representative of the UK-registered animal charity Pro Paws. “Dogs have not only increased in population, they've become more assertive and aggressive.” Aramian added that the number of incidents involving stray dog attacks on city residents has risen over the last five years.

    Armenia does not have animal protection laws, according to Aramian. The government allots half a million dollars per year of the annual budget to kill stray dogs. The website of the company that holds the animal-control contract, Unigraph-X, says it carries out the “sterilization and neutralization of wandering animals” in Yerevan. But activists, including filmmaker Ovsanna Hovsepyan, contend that the company relies on an extermination strategy. Not only is that approach not reducing the number of strays on the streets, it is making them more aggressive, activists say.

    Those involved in stray control are apparently paid on a bounty basis: the more they kill, the more they earn. Some Yerevan residents says the practices of the stray-control agents creates a nuisance, and is itself potentially dangerous. For example, Milena Maysuryan and Yeranuhi Poghosyan, residents of the 1st Nork Masiv District in the capital, say gunmen come to their neighborhood at all hours, including after midnight, to kill any stray dogs they can find, cutting off their tails as evidence.

    “How is this possible?” Maysuryan said. “My child can't sleep at night. With every shot that rings out, she wakes up.”

  6. CONTINUATION--The rest of the article on dogs in Armenia by Liana Aghajanian (a freelance writer based in Los Angeles)

    Maysuryan and Poghosyan recounted one recent incident in which animal control agents shot an eight-year-old neighborhood dog they described as friendly and well-behaved. When Poghosyan asked the men what they were doing, they told her they were hunting foxes, she said. “We don't want them to shoot the dogs, we don't want them to kill the dogs,” Maysuryan said.

    The government does not operate any animal shelters. There is one privately operated shelter in Yerevan, founded by Nune Mehrabyan, who organized the early June rally near the National Assemblyl. Mehrabyan undertook efforts to rescue stray dogs 12 years ago after the shootings began. A pianist by trade, she established “Save the Animals,” an non-governmental organization. The shelter now houses over 200 dogs and relies on public donations to keep operating.

    In addition to promoting legislative changes, Armenian animal rights activists are trying to change cultural attitudes. A large attitudinal gap was evident during the early June rally, when two elderly women approached and scolded the activists, asserting that stray dogs have been linked to attacks on children. Such criticism doesn’t daunt the activists. “If they want to or not, they must listen to us, because this problem has to be solved one day,” Hovsepyan said.

  7.’s mission for stray dogs:

    It is estimated that on any given day there are more than 600 million stray dogs living in desperate conditions around the world; and these strays give birth to between one and three BILLION puppies each year. As a result of these staggering numbers, stray dogs suffer terribly, and literally millions are brutally killed in the name of ‘population control,’ especially in countries without animal cruelty laws.’s mission is to end this needless suffering and killing by developing and distributing worldwide a pill which safely, economically, and painlessly sterilizes stray dogs, thereby reducing reproduction rates and controlling stray populations humanely.