Water Pik debuts Pet Wand Pro bathing tool for pets

March 14, 2017

Water Pik's Pet Wand Pro
Water Pik’s Pet Wand Pro (Photo courtesy of Pet Wand Pro)

Water Pik, a leader in replacement shower heads, has the pet-care category with Pet Wand PRO,  a new bathing tool.  According to a Water Pik press release, the contoured wand’s shape creates a new high pressure WaterComb Spray to penetrate thick fur and also avoid overspray. The water spray can be controlled in more ways than one using the EasySelect dial. Switch from the high pressure setting to a narrow spray for gentle cleaning of sensitive areas and hard-to-reach spots by dialing counterclockwise, or click into pause mode to stop the water flow for hands-free bathing. Pet Wand PRO is now available at Amazon for a suggested retail price of $49.99, with additional models coming in the summer of 2017.

Purina Pro Plan launches New Prime Plus Adult 7+ Formula

March 8, 2017

Purina Pro Plan
(Photo courtesy of Purina)

Purina Pro Plan has launched New Prime Plus Adult 7+ to help cats ages 7 and older live long and healthy lives. Here is an excerpt from a Purina press release with more details:

Backed by a pioneering nine-year study, the nutrient blend, found in the new Purina Pro Plan Prime Plus Adult 7+, was shown to improve and extend the life of cats seven and older. Findings were based on cats exclusively fed a complete diet with the proprietary blend vs. cats fed the complete and balanced diet alone. Prime Plus Adult 7+ is another life-changing innovation in the Pro Plan healthy aging product portfolio, alongside the breakthrough Bright Mind Adult 7+ formulas that support brain health in senior dogs.

To help introduce Prime Plus Adult 7+ and educate pet owners about the importance of healthy aging in their pets and the role nutrition can play, Purina Pro Plan is partnering with pet aging expert and co-founder of the University of Washington’s Dog Aging Project, Matt Kaeberlein, Ph.D. Dr. Kaeberlein’s groundbreaking research has led to a deeper understanding of the mechanism of aging in pets, and how science and preventative care can be used to intervene in the aging process.

Petcube app has added Facebook Live streaming

March 13, 2017

Manny the Frenchie goes live on Facebook via Petcube.
Manny the Frenchie goes live on Facebook via Petcube. (Photo courtesy of Petcube)

Petcube has announced a major iOS update to its popular Petcube App, integrating Facebook Live, so people can livestream pets to their personal Facebook page. According to a Pehe same update will be coming later to Android. Petcube makes the best-selling interactive pet cameras Petcube Play and Petcube Camera and the forthcoming Petcube Bites treat cam. With the Petcube App, people can join a community of pet lovers and also play with publicly shared pets.

The San Francisco based technology company is in Austin co-hosting a “future of pet care” event called Pet Rescue Lounge, in partnership with innovative pet care brands Whistle, DogVacay and Luuup, inviting pet-loving SXSW attendees and Austinites. At the event, Petcube will be demoing the Facebook Live integration by broadcasting a live adoption of puppies and kittens in partnership with local rescue organizations, Austin Humane Society and Texas Humane Heroes. Together with its co-host partners, Petcube will be broadcasting live from different locations, including special appearances on the green carpet by famed pet celebrities Manny the Frenchie and Moshow the cat rapper. A portion of every sale with the code PETRESCUE at Petcube.com, Whistle.com, Luuup.com and DogVacay.com will be donated to Austin rescue groups.

Manny the Frenchie goes live on Facebook via Petcube.
Manny the Frenchie goes live on Facebook via Petcube. (Photo courtesy of Petcube)

With a commitment to reimagining pet care, Petcube continues to drive innovation in the Connected Pet space and is gearing up for the forthcoming commercial release of its interactive treat cam, Petcube Bites. Petcube Bites, now open for pre-order, will be the most advanced treat-flinging cam on the market, with 1080p HD video, night vision, video cloud recording, sound and motion alerts, two-way audio, the ability to remotely fling treats varying distances, a built-in container that will hold up to two pounds of treats, and automatic treat reorder support.

Petcube has also announced a strategic brand partnership with Wellness, the leading natural pet food brand and maker of popular Wellness dog and cat treats, to provide healthy treat samples for the Petcube Bites treat cam. The collaboration will feature Wellness treats that enhance the treating experience with the Petcube Bites cam. Owners will always have the flexibility to buy their preferred treat brands and products compatible with the Petcube Bites device.

Petcube Bites is available for pre-order on Petcube.com, Amazon, and Best Buy and will start rolling out commercially in early summer. With the opening of pre-orders for a limited time, Petcube Bites will be available at $199, or $50 off the retail price. The MSRP for Petcube Bites is $249 and Petcube Play is $199. Currently, Petcube Play is $149 through March 18,  2017, as part of a spring sale promotion. All Petcube devices come in three colors: carbon black, matte silver and rose gold.

Petcube’s camera product lineup supports on-the-go pet care and home security with the popular cloud recording service Petcube Care, which provides a 24/7 video timeline, sound and motion triggered recording and alerts, and up to 30 days of history. Owners can test drive the service with a 30-day trial that comes automatically with each device purchase.

2017 Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards: ‘Ghostbusters,’ ‘Finding Dory,’ Kevin Hart are the top winners

February 12, 2017

Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards

With three prizes each, the 2016 remake of the comedy film “Ghostbusters,” the animated movie “Finding Dory” (a sequel to “Finding Nemo”), and Kevin Hart were the top winners at Nickelodeon’s 30th Annual Kids’ Choice Awards (KCAs), which took place March 11, 2017, at USC’s Galen Center in Los Angeles.  Hosted by WWE Superstar John Cena, Nickelodeon’s 2017 Kids’ Choice Awards aired on Nickelodeon.

“Ghostbusters” received the awards for Favorite Movie, Favorite Actress (for Melissa McCarthy) and Favorite Actor (for Chris Hemsworth). “Finding Dory” won the prizes for Best Animated Movie, #Squad, Best Voice from an Animated Movie (for Ellen DeGeneres’ voice work as the forgetful fish named Dory). “Finding Dory” won the prizes for Best Animated Movie, #Squad, Best Voice from an Animated Movie (for Ellen DeGeneres’ voice work as the forgetful fish named Dory).  Hart’s voice work as a cat named Snowball in animated comedy “The Secret Life of Pets” earned him the awards for Favorite Villain and Most Wanted Pet, while his pairing with Dwayne Johnson in the action comedy “Central Intelligence” garnered the BFFs (Best Friends Forever) prize. The female singing group Fifth Harmony won two awards: Favorite Song (for “Work From Home”) and Favorite Music Group. “Henry Danger” also won two awards: Favorite TV Show – Kids Show and Favorite TV Actor (for Jace Norman).

Performers at the 2017 KCAs were Little Mix, as well as MGK with former Fifth Harmony member Camila Cabello.  Little Mix also won the prize for Favorite Global Music Star. And, of course, the tradition of showering unsuspecting stars with green slime at the KCAs continued. This year, the “green slime victims” were Chris Pratt, Cena and Demi Lovato.

Kids cast their votes for the awards at Nick.com and the Nick app on iPad, iPhone, Kindle and Android devices. Users were also able to vote through Twitter and Facebook using special KCA hashtags and the hashtag of their favorite nominee.

This year’s show featured nine new categories, including Favorite Frenemies, Most Wanted Pet, Favorite Viral Music Artist, Favorite Global Music Star and #Squad.

Nickelodeon’s 2017 Kids’ Choice Awards was produced by Nickelodeon Productions. Elizabeth Kelly, Michael Dempsey, Shelly Sumpter Gillyard and Jay Schmalholz were executive producers of the show. Sponsors of Nickelodeon’s 2017 Kids’ Choice Awards included Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Crest, Hot Wheels, Nintendo, Skechers, Toyota and Walmart.

 

Here is the list of winners and nominees for Nickelodeon’s 2017 Kids’ Choice Awards:

* =new categories

*** = winner

TELEVISION:

Favorite TV Show – Kids’ Show
“Game Shakers”
“Girl Meets World”
“Henry Danger”***
“Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn”
“The Thundermans”

Favorite TV Show – Family Show
“Big Bang Theory”
“Black-ish”
“Fuller House”***
“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.”
“Supergirl”
“The Flash”

Favorite Reality Show
“America’s Funniest Home Videos”
“America’s Got Talent”***
“American Ninja Warrior”
“Paradise Run”
“Shark Tank”
“The Voice”

Favorite Cartoon
“ALVINNN!!! and the Chipmunks”
“SpongeBob SquarePants”***
“Teen Titans Go!”
“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles”
“The Amazing World of Gumball”
“The Loud House”

Favorite Male TV Star
Benjamin Flores Jr. (Triple G, “Game Shakers”)
Aidan Gallagher (Nicky, Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn)
Jack Griffo (Max, The Thundermans)
Jace Norman (Henry, Henry Danger)***
Casey Simpson (Ricky, “Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn”)
Tyrel Jackson Williams (Leo, “Lab Rats”)

Favorite Female TV Star
Rowan Blanchard (Riley, “Girl Meets World”)
Dove Cameron (Liv and Maddie, “Liv and Maddie”)
Lizzy Greene (Dawn, “Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn”)
Kira Kosarin (Phoebe, “The Thundermans”)
Breanna Yde (Tomika, “School of Rock”)
Zendaya (K.C., “K.C. Undercover”)***

FILM:

Favorite Movie
“Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice”
“Captain America: Civil War”
“Ghostbusters”***
“Pete’s Dragon”
“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story”
“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows”

Favorite Movie Actor
Ben Affleck (Batman, “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice”)
Will Arnett (Vernon, “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows”)
Henry Cavill (Superman, “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice”)
Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man, “Captain America: Civil War”)
Chris Evans (Captain America, “Captain America: Civil War”)
Chris Hemsworth (Kevin, “Ghostbusters”)***

Favorite Movie Actress
Amy Adams (Lois, “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice”)
Megan Fox (April, “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows”)
Scarlett Johansson (Black Widow, “Captain America: Civil War”)
Felicity Jones (Jyn, “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story”)
Melissa McCarthy (Abby, “Ghostbusters”)***
Kristen Wiig (Erin, “Ghostbusters”)

Favorite Animated Movie
“Finding Dory”***
“Moana”
“Sing”
“The Secret Life of Pets”
“Trolls”
“Zootopia”

Favorite Voice From an Animated Movie
Ellen DeGeneres (Dory, “Finding Dory”)***
Kevin Hart (Snowball, “The Secret Life of Pets”)
Dwayne Johnson (Maui, “Moana”)
Anna Kendrick (Poppy, “Trolls”)
Justin Timberlake (Branch, “Trolls”)
Reese Witherspoon (Rosita, “Sing”)

Favorite Villain
Helena Bonham Carter (The Red Queen, “Alice Through the Looking Glass”)
Idris Elba (Krall, “Star Trek Beyond”)
Will Ferrell (Mugatu, “Zoolander 2”)
Kevin Hart (Snowball, “The Secret Life of Pets”)***
Charlize Theron (Ravenna, “The Huntsman: Winter’s War”)
Spencer Wilding (Darth Vader, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story)

Favorite Butt-Kicker
Ben Affleck (Batman, “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice”)
Henry Cavill (Superman, “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice”)
Chris Evans (Captain America, “Captain America: Civil War”)***
Chris Hemsworth (The Huntsman, “The Huntsman: Winter’s War”)
Scarlett Johansson (Black Widow, “Captain America: Civil War”)
Felicity Jones (Jyn, “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story”)
Jennifer Lawrence (Mystique, “X-Men: Apocalypse”)
Zoe Saldana (Lieutenant Uhura, “Star Trek Beyond”)

BFF’s (Best Friends Forever)*
Ruby Barnhill & Mark Rylance (Sophie/BFG, “The BFG”)
Kevin Hart & Dwayne Johnson (Bob/Calvin, “Central Intelligence”)***
Kevin Hart & Ice Cube (Ben/James, “Ride Along 2”)
Chris Pine & Zachary Quinto (Captain Kirk/Spock, “Star Trek Beyond”)
Neel Sethi & Bill Murray (Mowgli/ Baloo, “Jungle Book”)
Ben Stiller & Owen Wilson (Derek/Hansel, “Zoolander 2”)

Favorite Frenemies*
Anna Kendrick & Justin Timberlake (Poppy/Branch, “Trolls”)
Ben Affleck & Henry Cavill (Batman/Superman, “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice”)
Chris Evans & Robert Downey Jr. (“Captain America/Iron Man, Captain America: Civil War”)
Ginnifer Goodwin & Jason Bateman (Judy/Nick, “Zootopia”)***
Dwayne Johnson & Auli’I Cravalho (Moana/Maui, “Moana”)
Charlize Theron & Emily Blunt (Ravenna/Freya, “The Huntsman: Winter’s War”)

Most Wanted Pet*
Baloo from “The Jungle Book” (Bill Murray)
Dory from “Finding Dory” (Ellen DeGeneres)
Po from “Kung Fu Panda 3” (Jack Black)
Red from “The Angry Birds Movie” (Jason Sudeikis)
Rosita from “Sing” (Reese Witherspoon)
Snowball from “The Secret Life of Pets” (Kevin Hart)***

#Squad*
“Captain America: Civil War”Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie, Don Cheadle, Jeremy Renner, Chadwick Boseman

“Finding Dory”Ellen DeGeneres, Albert Brooks, Kaitlin Olson, Hayden Rolence, Willem Dafoe, Ed O’Neill, Ty Burrell, Eugene Levy***

“Ghostbusters” Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, Leslie Jones

“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” – Felicity Jones, Forest Whitaker, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, Alan Tudyk, Donnie Yen, Riz Ahmed, Mads Mikkelsen

“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows”Noel Fisher, Jeremy Howard, Pete Ploszek, Alan Ritchson

“X-Men: Apocalypse”James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Evan Peters, Tye Sheridan, Ben Hardy, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Sophie Turner, Alexandra Shipp, Olivia Munn

MUSIC:

Favorite Music Group
The Chainsmokers
Fifth Harmony***
Maroon 5
OneRepublic
Pentatonix
Twenty One Pilots

Favorite Male Singer
Drake
Justin Bieber
Bruno Mars
Shawn Mendes***
Justin Timberlake
The Weeknd

Favorite Female Singer
Adele
Beyoncé
Ariana Grande
Selena Gomez***
Rihanna
Meghan Trainor

Favorite Song
“24K Magic”Bruno Mars
“Can’t Stop the Feeling!”Justin Timberlake
“Heathens”Twenty One Pilots
“Send My Love (To Your New Lover)”Adele
“Side to Side”Ariana Grande ft. Nicki Minaj
“Work from Home”Fifth Harmony ft. Ty Dolla $ign***

Favorite New Artist
Kelsea Ballerini
The Chainsmokers
Daya
Lukas Graham
Solange
Rae Sremmurd
Hailee Steinfeld
Twenty One Pilots***

Favorite Music Video*
“24K Magic”Bruno Mars
“Can’t Stop The Feeling!”Justin Timberlake
“Formation”Beyoncé
“Juju on That Beat”Zay Hilfigerrr and Zayion McCall***
“Me Too”Meghan Trainor
“Stressed Out”Twenty One Pilots

Favorite DJ/EDM Artist*
Martin Garrix
Calvin Harris***
Major Lazer
Skrillex
DJ Snake
Zedd

Favorite Soundtrack*
“Hamilton”
“Me Before You”
“Moana”
“Sing”
“Suicide Squad”***
“Trolls”

Favorite Viral Music Artist*
Tiffany Alvord
Matty B
Carson Lueders
Johnny Orlando
Jacob Sartorius
JoJo Siwa***

Favorite Global Music Star*
5 Seconds of Summer (Australia/New Zealand)
BIGBANG (Asia)
Bruno Mars (North America)
Little Mix (UK)***
Shakira (South America)
Zara Larsson (Europe)

OTHER CATEGORIES:

Favorite Video Game
“Just Dance 2017″***
“Lego Marvel’s Avengers”
“Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens”
“Minecraft: Story Mode”
“Paper Mario: Color Splash”
“Pokémon Moon”

Patio Pet Life offers grass-based portable solution for dog waste management

March 10, 2017

Patio Pet Life pet potty pad
(Photo courtesy of Patio Pet Life)

Patio Pet Life  is aiming to help dog owners who do not have lawns, need to potty train puppies, or are temporarily unable to walk their dogs due to timing or bad weather. Patio Pet Life delivers farm-fresh pet grass right to their customer’s door, providing a convenient alternative for pet owners with no lawn.

According to a press release, Patio Pet Life (a family-run company based in Orange County, California) provides real grass potty pads for dogs. The company offers both small (2’x2′) and large (4’x2′) potty pads along with a tray for holding the real grass pads that make cleaning easier.

Grown locally in Southern California, the hydroponically grown pet grass is soilless and 50 percent lighter than traditional grass, making it lightweight with just as much absorption and odor control. The real grass potty pads are simple and easy to use too. They just roll out and are ready for use. When a customer wants to dispose of it or swap it out for another potty pad, they simply roll it back up and dispose of it. The company also includes a roll of disposal bags with each delivery for quick and easy clean up.

Patio Pet Life’s subscription program has no contract and allows the customer the flexibility to adjust delivery frequency and place their deliveries on hold if they are out of town. The company ships nationwide.

American Kennel Club announces first set of 2017 AKC Paw of Courage winners

March 6, 2017

AKC Paw of Courage 2017 winners
(Photos courtesy of American Kennel Club)

The American Kennel Club (AKC), the world’s largest purebred dog registry, has announced the first set of 2017 AKC Paw of Courage awards to recognize the working canines that put their lives on the line every day to keep our communities safe. This award specifically recognizes those who are serving or have served their departments honorably.

Any working dog is eligible to receive the AKC Paw of Courage; the award is not specific to purebred dogs. To nominate a dog for the next set of Paw of Courage awards, click here. Recipients of the award, or their human partner, will receive a 2017 AKC Paw of Courage medal along with a certificate. In addition, the recipients will receive a photo and profile on akc.org.

The first set of 2017 AKC Paw of Courage recipients are:

K9 Mattis of the Alpharetta Police Department, Georgia

K9 Mattis, a 3-year-old German Shepherd Dog, serves with the Alpharetta Police Department. In October of 2016, while his handler, Officer Mark Tappan, and K9 Mattis were in a foot pursuit, the suspect leapt off a 30-foot retaining wall, and Mattis followed without hesitation, leading to his surrender. Mattis was checked for obvious injuries and was quickly on his way to respond to the next call with Officer Tappan. They were able to track down and apprehend the second suspect shortly before Mattis collapsed from internal injuries from the earlier fall. He was rushed to the emergency vet where he was treated for a lacerated liver and a contusion of his right lung.

Mattis has since made a full recovery and returned to active duty. In his short time with the department, Mattis has contributed to over 100 arrests and has assisted in removing countless amounts of narcotics from the streets. Additionally, he has performed several demonstrations for church groups, schools and various other community groups, often surrounded by the children of the community. Officer Tappan describes K9 Mattis as a very special blend of tenacious working dog and friendly family pet. Mattis’ lack of hesitation jumping off the wall demonstrates his dedication and loyalty to his work. The sacrifice Mattis made that day to protect his community is truly appreciated by Officer Tappan, the Alpharetta Police Department and the community he serves.

K9 Jardo of the Boise Police Department, Idaho

K9 Jardo was a 6-year-old Belgian Malinois of the Boise Police Department in Idaho when he was shot in the line of duty while confronting an armed suspect. Jardo was rushed to WestVet Animal Emergency and Specialty Center with at least one gunshot wound to the chest. He underwent surgery and two dogs, both pets of staff members at WestVet, donated blood to Jardo, giving him a life-saving transfusion. The surgery and transfusion were successful and Jardo was expected to make a full recovery. However, about a week later, he succumbed to his injuries.

K9 Jardo was trained to track and apprehend dangerous criminals, find evidence relating to crimes and locate street drugs. He successfully apprehended a dangerous gang member in his very first week on patrol. When he was not on duty, Jardo enjoyed playing with his dog friends and swimming in the canal by his house. K9 Jardo made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty to protect his community. He will be missed dearly by his handler, Officer Shane Williams, as well as the entire Boise Police Department and each person he has touched throughout his life.

K9 Peydro of the Woodland Police Department, California

K9 Peydro is a 3-year-old German Shepherd Dog, handled by Officer Juan Barrera. He served the Woodland Police Department honorably for a little over a year. In May of 2016, Peydro was struck by a vehicle while he and Officer Barrera were in pursuit of a wanted man. K9 Peydro was immediately transported to a veterinary hospital and after a successful surgery and blood transfusion, he made a full recovery, but was medically retired in October of 2016. The suspect involved in the incident later turned himself in to the Woodland Police Department. Peydro was a dual purpose police K9 trained in narcotics, apprehension, and article searching. He weighs about 80 lbs, but Officer Barrera and his family are convinced that he thinks he’s a lap dog. When he’s not on duty, he loves to cuddle up on the couch and balance toys on his nose. Peydro’s sacrifice in the line of duty was an indication of his courage and commitment to his community. He is now enjoying his retired life with his family.

K9 Bruno of Anaheim Police Department, California

K9 Bruno, a 7-year-old German Shepherd Dog, served with the Anaheim Police Department for six years at the time of his injury. He was given an AKC Humane Fund Award for Canine Excellence (ACE) by the American Kennel Club in 2014 after being shot while assisting the SWAT team with a search. The bullet went through Bruno’s lower jaw and lodged in his chest, only about an inch from his heart. After the incident, Bruno retired from his K9 duties and lived at home with his partner, Officer R.J. Young. About two years later, K9 Bruno succumbed to complications from his initial injury.

Bruno was one of two dogs who trained to become part of the SWAT team. He graduated first in his class from the K9 academy and also won first place overall in narcotics during his first ever K9 competition. Bruno was credited with finding millions of dollars’ worth of narcotics and narcotic-related money. He was always full of energy and was well known around the department for disrupting briefings by chewing on his red toy. K9 Bruno was a cherished officer, partner and family companion and will be missed dearly by Officer Young and the Anaheim Police Department, as well as every one of the many lives he has touched.

Here are more photos of the winners:

Honda partners with spcaLA to help people adopt dogs

March 2, 2017

Carlos PenaVega in Honda's 2017 CR-V SUV campaign
Carlos PenaVega in Honda’s 2017 CR-V SUV campaign that promotes the car and dog adoption. (Photo courtesy of Honda)

Honda has teamed up with spcaLA in a campaign to help people adopt dogs. The campaign (which runs from March 2  to March 31, 2017) is also aimed at boosting awareness for the 2017 Honda CR-V SUV. According to a Honda press release, the  promotion will be primarily on Honda’s Latino-oriented social channels, such as @HondaLatino Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. The campaign incorporates the brand’s belief in “The Power of Dreams,” which has been a key theme throughout the CR-V’s marketing launch. Actor/singer Carlos PenaVega (formerly of the group Big Time Rush) stars in a series of three videos for the campaign. The dogs featured in the videos are pets from the spcaLA that are up for adoption.

Honda’s “CR-V Pet Adoption Drive” follows the CR-V’s “Best Friends” Spanish-language TV spot, which debuted on Fox Deportes during football’s big game in February, marking a first for Honda. The spot focuses on the notion that sometimes a dream means helping others realize theirs. It tells the emotional story of a young boy and his mom adopting a puppy together. Over time the boy and his dog develop a fun and loving relationship and the whole family comes together to train the dog. One day, they receive a call they’ve been expecting. In the final moments of the spot, it is revealed that the months-long training activities have been done so that they could gift the dog to another family as a service dog to help a child with special needs.

Cat Fanciers’ Association announces top U.S. cat breeds of 2016

February 12, 2017

by Janice Wells

The Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) has announced the 10 most popular cat breeds in the U.S. for 2016.  For the third year in a row, the exotic was No. 1. CFA compiles the list based on its cat registry.

The same cat breeds that were in the Top 10 in 2015 were in the Top 10 in 2016, except the Orienta dropped out of the Top 10 spot and was replaced at No. 10 by the Devon Rex, which jumped from the No. 11 spot that it held the previous year. Other breeds that made the Top 10 in 2016 with a higher ranking than the previous year are the Ragdoll, which jumped from No. 4 to No. 2 ; the British shorthair, which went from No. 5 to No. 3; and the Sphync, which rose from No. 10 to No.. 8. Three breeds in the Top 10 had a lower ranking in 2016 compared to the previous year: the Persian dropped from No. 2 to No. 4; the Maine Coone fell from No. 3 to No. 5; and the Abyssinian went from No. 8 to No. 9.

Here are CFA’s Top 10 cat breeds in the U.S. for 2016:

1.  Exotic

(2015 Ranking: No. 1)

 

2.  Ragdoll

(2015 Ranking: No. 4)

 

3.  British shorthair

( 2015 Ranking: No. 5)

 

4.  Persian

(2015 Ranking: No. 2)

 

5.  Maine Coon

(2015 Ranking: No. 3)

 

6.  American shorthair

(2015 Ranking: No. 6)

 

7.  Scottish fold

(2015 Ranking: No. 7)

 

8.  Sphynx

(2015 Ranking: No. 10)

 

9.  Abyssinian

(2015 Ranking: No. 8)

 

10.  Devon Rex

(2015 Ranking: No. 11)

 

 

‘Cesar Millan’s Dog Nation’ features Cesar Millan and son on road trip to help dogs

February 9, 2017

Cesar Millan's Dog Nation
(Photo courtesy of Nat Geo Wild)

Celebrity dog trainer Cesar Millan is back for a new TV series called “Cesar Millan’s Dog Nation.” The show premieres in the U.S. on Nat Geo Wild on March 3, 2017, at 9 p.m. ET/PT. Here are more details from a Nat Geo Wild press release:

The series will present new challenges for Cesar as he does more than just help dog owners with their pets’ behavioral problems. We uncover inspirational K-9 stories and connect with those that are working to make our world a better place for us and our pets, such as organizations helping veterans and their service dogs, community-run animal rescue groups training K-9 police dogs and therapy dogs that help children with autism. From canine heroes to issues affecting local dog communities, no pup is off limits as the Millans hit the road to help dogs across the country.

During production of “Cesar Millan’s Dog Nation,” the father-and-son duo traveled to seven different cities across the country to find the most unbelievable and inspirational canine stories America has to offer. They met with local hero dogs from Philadelphia, Chicago, the District of Columbia, St. Louis, San Francisco, San Diego and Los Angeles.

Cesar is also sharing the life-changing lessons he learned from the dogs he has worked with, in an exciting new book. For the first time, the No. 1 New York Times best-selling author shares personal insights from decades of experience and eight very special dogs in his life, in “Lessons From the Pack: Stories of the Dogs Who Changed My Life” (National Geographic Books; on sale now everywhere books are sold; ISBN 978-1-4262-1613-8; 240 pages; $24.95).

Premiere Episodes Include:

City of Angels
Premieres March 3 at 9/8c
World-renowned dog behaviorist Cesar Millan and his protege son, Andre, crisscross the United States to work with nonprofit organizations and dog lovers that are helping save millions of canines around the country. Their first stop is in Los Angeles, where they help an amazing golden retriever named Fergus who survived a horrific burning. Fergus’ owners hope that he can someday become a therapy dog for other burn survivors, but they need Cesar to help with the dog’s behavior while on his leash. Then Cesar and Andre pay a visit to The Help Group, a nonprofit that uses dogs to help kids with autism and other special needs. The dogs seem to help with verbal and mental skills, and even motor skills, helping some kids through an obstacle course. Andre has an emotional moment as he reveals a personal connection.

Borderline K9s
Premieres March 10 at 9/8c
Cesar and Andre Millan journey down the West Coast to visit with heroes of the canine communities of San Diego. After Cesar’s live demonstration downtown, where hundreds of fans have brought their dogs to get real-time take-home tips, Cesar takes Andre to Tijuana, Mexico, to visit with Dog Rescue Without Borders, an organization that works to help lessen the city’s massive stray dog population. The Millans go on a ride along and help rescue from the streets a stray that is in very poor condition, suffering from mange and a variety of other diseases. While in Tijuana, they pay a visit to Mrs. Franco, a woman who runs an animal sanctuary there.

A Whole New Ball Game
Premieres March 17 at 9/8c
World-renowned dog behaviorist Cesar Millan and his protege son, Andre, travel to San Francisco, California, to help locals with their problem dogs and meet some of Dog Nation’s heroes. The first stop is Cesar’s live event at the Pet Express Dog Adoption Fair, where hundreds of fans have brought their dogs to get real-time take-home tips from the experts. Then, the Millans meet Pali, the founder and president of Rocket Dog Rescue, who canvasses local San Francisco shelters trying to find homes for dogs on the euthanasia list. Pali grew up homeless herself, so she identifies with these dogs that society has forgotten. They travel to an Oakland shelter to see Cassie, a pit bull that has behavior issues that make her a tough dog to home. Finally, Andre visits San Quentin State Prison to learn about a program that matches minimum security inmates with shelter dogs. Both parties benefit here — the shelter dogs have a home, and the inmates gain comfort and connection they otherwise would lack.

Meet Me in St. Louis
Premieres March 24 at 9/8c
World-renowned dog behaviorist Cesar Millan and his protege son, Andre, road trip to St. Louis, Missouri — the Gateway to the West — to help as many members of our dog nation as they can. In this episode, Cesar and Andre work with an organization called Serendipity German Shepherd Dog Rescue. The duo hopes to help the organization with a dog named Bruce Wayne that was recently rescued from a puppy mill and shows signs of anxiety and fear around people. Missouri is considered the capital of the puppy mills of the United States, so Bruce Wayne’s story is sadly a common one in the area. The Millans take this opportunity to meet with some local heroes who have been fighting puppy mill abuse in the state. Finally, Cesar and Andre work with a local shepherd mix named Roxie whose owner abruptly passed away. Both Roxie and her new owner, Arian, are still living with their grief, causing extreme separation anxiety for Roxie.

Cesar Millan’s Dog Nation is produced for Nat Geo Wild by Leepson Bounds Entertainment. Executive producers are Cesar Millan, Bob Aniello, Richard Hall and David Leepson. For Nat Geo WILD, executive producer and senior vice president of development and production is Janet Han Vissering and executive vice president and general manager is Geoff Daniels.

2017 Puppy Bowl: see all the cute photos and videos

February 6, 2017

Rory, the poodle mix that was voted Puppy Bowl XIII MVP.
Rory, the poodle mix that was voted Puppy Bowl XIII MVP. (Photo courtesy of Animal Planet)

Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl XIII was the first Puppy Bowl to air simultaneously on both coasts when it premiered on February 5, 2017 (Super Bowl Sunday) with three hours of puppies playing a mock football game. The inaugural Petco Lombarky trophy was awarded in Puppy Bowl XIII at Geico Stadium, a miniature set built for the TV show.

According to an Animal Planet press release, Puppy Bowl XIII kicked off at Geico Stadium with a special appearance by weather forecaster Mr. Punxsutawney Phil. The famous groundhog and two of his inner circle officiated the coin toss to start the game. This year’s Pedigree Starting Lineup boasted 39 puppies who also competed for the individual Bissell MVP (Most Valuable Puppy) by scoring the most touchdowns with dog-approved toys by Petco. This year’s Bissell MVP was Team Fluff’s Rory, a 17-week-old male poodle mix from Little Dog Rescue in Florida.

For the sixth year in a row, America’s favorite “ Rufferee,” Dan Schachner, returned to call the puppy  penalties, furry fumbles and terrier touchdowns.Award-winning animal advocate and television  correspondent Jill Rappaport introduced the Subaru Pup Close and Personal segments that highlight  some of the  heartwarming stories of the adorable athletes.

For Puppy Bowl XIII, Animal Planet worked with 34 different animal shelters and rescue organizations from across 22 states to fill the rosters of #TeamRuff and #TeamFluff with 78 adoptable players for this puppy pile-up. This year, the Bowl also featured three pups with special needs: Doobert (deaf), Lucky (three-legged) and Winston (hearing-and-sight impaired). One special player is drafted to play in Puppy Bowl XIII by celebrity dog Chunk  Handler. Plus, viewers got to see the canines conduct their pre-game rituals when the cameras were allowed in the locker room.

While the puppies broke for a cat nap, the Arm & Hammer Clump & Seal Kitty Half-Time Show got underway with a performance by the feline musical group Chicago Rock Cats with Kitty Gaga singing “Puparazzi ” to her little monsters of adoptable rescue kittens.

The puppy teams added rescue mascots to their cheering section. Team Ruff gained the watchful eye of Orlando the Screech Owl, and Team Fluff recruited Muffin the Chinchilla who adds  another layer of fluff. Getting the fans excited on the sidelines are rescue rabb its and guinea pig  cheerleaders who hop into action. “Meep the Bird” got a ma keover and returned as a rescue African Gray Parrot. Meep talked sports with Geico The Gecko and live tweeted updates throughout the big game.

Plus, Puppy Bowl fans got a glimpse of celebrity dogs Chloe the Mini Frenchie, Chloe Kardoggian, Ella Bean, Marnie the Dog, Manny the Frenchie, Mervin the Chihuahua,  Sometimes Carl and Toast Meets World with her siblings Muppets Revenge and Underpants the Dog who watched the biggest game of the year from  the stands. As always, fans witnessed Puppy Bow’s water bowl cam, slow-motion playback cam and fan-favorite Dairy Queen kiss cam. Viewers won’t miss a minute of excitement with aerial shots of the field  from the Sheba Sky Box, and Surge the Hamster was back on his wheel powering the Puppy Bowl score board.

Puppy Bowl Virtual Reality, sponsored by Pedigree, gave viewers a pup’s eye view of the action on the Geico grid iron through the eyes of Buttons, one of this year’s Puppy Bowl XIII players. Not letting her diminutive size hold her back when tackling opponents in a scrimmage spanning two  video halves, Buttons played her way through the piles of puppies, chew toys and assistant coaches to score a winning touchdown.

On game day, puppy supporters were invited to vote in the Most Valuable Puppy poll . Viewer votes determined which heavenly hound gets barking rights and the title of Bissell MVP, which will be revealed at the  end of the broadcast. Before and during the action, keep an eye out for guest takeovers on Animal Planet  Instagram and  Snapchat. This year’s roster includes players from AHeinz57 (Iowa), Big Fluffy Dog Rescue (Tennessee), Citizens for Animal Protection (Texas), Last Hope K 9 (Massachusetts), Miami-Dade County Animal Services (Florida),  Mr. Bones & Company (New York), Nevada SPCA, Paw Works (California), Stray Rescue (Missouri),  among others.

The ASPCA in New York provided adoptable kittens for the Kitty Half-Time Show; the cheerleading rescue rabbits and guinea pigs are from Luv-N- Bunns (Philadelphia) and Helping All Little Things (New Jersey). The chinchilla mascots were provided by Chin Friends Chinchilla Rescue (New York) and the owl flew in from Volunteers for  Wildlife (Long Island). The African parrot was provided by Phoenix Landing rescue (Washington, DC).

(All photos courtesy of Animal Planet)

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