General Interest

Therapy Dog Encourages Learning

posted May 23rd, 2017 by
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Therapy Dog

Therapy Dog Encourages Learning

at Oklahoma School for the Deaf

SULPHUR, Okla. – When Jasmine, the therapy dog, arrived at the Oklahoma School for the Deaf, the students naturally knew what to do. 

They loved her.

Therapy Dog


Jasmine, Oklahoma School for the Deaf’s new therapy dog, is surrounded by fourth grade admirers.

Jasmine and her adult humans, however, still had a few things to learn.

A Labrador-mix breed, Jasmine had been adopted and returned twice to P.A.W.S. animal shelter in Ada, through no fault of her own.

A New Leash on Life, Inc. in Norman selected her to attend 10-weeks of obedience training through their Pen Pals Prison Program at CCA-Davis Correctional Facility in Holdenville. 

“We look for dogs that are easy-going, laid back and not bothered by a lot of things for placement as therapy dogs,” Barbara Lewis, A New Leash on Life executive director, explained. “They are homeless dogs, so we try very hard to match them with a working opportunity when they graduate.” 

Oklahoma School for the Deaf Counselor Gayla Jackson and Librarian Lesa Price were approved for a therapy dog in time for the prison trainer to teach basic sign language hand signals for the commands sit, stay and come. 

When Jasmine first arrived, the students gave her a sign name. But she did not want to go upstairs at the school. A New Leash on Life trainers came to OSD to help their therapy dog adjust. After coaxing by a favorite student and a few cheeseburgers, her phobia came to an end. 

“She’s a good therapy dog and a good home dog,” Jackson explained. “Once she got here, I was determined to keep her, whether she worked out as a therapy dog or not.”

Jasmine lives with Jackson after work, on the weekends and vacation breaks. The dog keeps a watchful eye on Jackson most of the time. 

Price, who shares handling responsibilities, takes care of Jasmine in the school library when Jackson is not available during school hours.

“Jasmine calms students down and opens them up – makes them feel comfortable – and she loves coming to work,” she said. “Once she goes past the guard shack, she knows she’s here.”

During the interview, Jasmine happily cuddles with students and then lies down with sigh after the lunch light flashes.

“It’s a great idea to have a therapy dog at the School for the Deaf,” Lewis agreed. “Children and even adults feel more comfortable with dogs as a companion than they do with other people. I think it’s because they are not judgmental and seem to relate to people emotionally.”   

At first, Jackson worried that her two Boston Terriers, who lack formal training, might be a bad influence. 

“The trainer said that it doesn’t work like that,” Jackson explained. “Thank goodness.”

Training continues for Jasmine and Jackson. They are currently enrolled in an obedience class at Canine Sports Academy in Norman soon to be followed with a class to prepare them to take the Canine Good Citizen test. After that, it’s more testing so Jasmine can become certified by Therapy Dog International. 

“I want the kids and adults to know that she actually passed her certification test, and there is nothing to worry about,” Jackson said. “Plus, the trainer is going to work on tricks with her, so the kids can be more engaged with what she does and she can become less attached to me.”

“This summer, I plan to bring her to summer camp, and I’ll probably take her to nursing homes to keep her working until school starts up in the fall,” Jackson said. “She loves working. She loves people. We’ve got this.” 

As the statewide resource center on deafness, OSD offers the ultimate learning environment for deaf and hard of hearing students who meet the same graduation requirements as students in other public schools. In 2016, 240 students lived at the school during the week, commuted from home or attended summer school classes. OSD operates two satellite preschools at the University of Central Oklahoma in Edmond and the University of Arts and Sciences of Oklahoma in Chickasha. As the statewide resource center for students who are deaf or hard of hearing, OSD provides thousands of free evaluations and direct services each year for students attending local public schools, their families and educators. The school is a division of the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services.

For more information, phone (580) 622-4900 or (888) 685-3333 toll free or visit the website at www.osd.k12.ok.us/.

Shoes & Boots for Dogs…Really!

posted December 12th, 2016 by
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Will Tottle

Fashion Tips for Your Trusted Friend

– Shoes & Boots for Dogs…Really!

 By Will Tottle

We love our dogs, and there is nothing more important than their happiness and well-being. So when we take them out in the rain, many of them end up with cold paws – especially if they have short coats. Some even suffer from allergies to grass and other irritants that are found on the ground, making walking an uncomfortable time for them.

Whether your dog needs something between them and the ground, or you just want them walking in style, there are a pair of shoes or rain boots waiting for your canine companion. Here are the five we consider to be the best.Boots

Mosunx Dog Boots

These adorable booties for dogs are cheap and come in five different sizes, so practically every dog can benefit from a pair of these. They feature a sweet design with a soft inside for your pooch’s comfort.

They are waterproof as well as anti-slip so that even in wet weather your dog will come home with dry paws. The rubber sole offers protection from broken glass, sharp stones, and nails, so walking in urban areas doesn’t need to cause stress. Plus, they are incredibly fashionable.

BootsWaterproof and Reflective Dog Shoes

Perfect for medium and large dogs who suffer from allergies, these boots will ensure their paws stay dry in wet weather, but also have reflective Velcro for safe night time walking. They are ideal for protecting the pads of their paws from hot road surfaces or snow.

The soles are made from thick rubber and are anti-slip so they won’t be falling over everywhere in wet or icy conditions. Plus, it helps protect their paws from broken glass and other sharp debris that might be lying around.

BootsPesp Rain Boots

These adorable rain boots come in a variety of colors and in five sizes that are sure to have your dog looking spectacularly stylish in no time at all. They have a Velcro fastening and are really easy to get on as well as off again.

Ideal for rain and snow, they are also waterproof and anti-slip, which is perfect for winter walks. They are really comfortable for your pet to wear and allow free movement for them while walking. Plus, all the colors will have them looking fab.

BootsDenim Dog Shoes

Want your dog’s style to match yours? What better way than these stylish denim dog shoes. These casual booties fasten with a small shoe lace, so they really will be the most fashionable dog in town. They are made from denim and have a thick rubber sole.

This means they are non-slip, so in wet conditions, they won’t be falling over. They act to keep your dog’s paws clean, comfortable, and protected from sharp debris such as glass or sharp stones. A truly stylish look that comes in two sizes.

BootsPetacc Waterproof Dog Boots

These cute boots from Petacc are made from a tough and durable material that is also waterproof and will prevent your dog from slipping over. They help to keep their paws clean, and the rubber soles protect them from debris and sharp objects.

It has reflective Velcro straps so that your dog is safe at night and passing vehicles can see them. They also feature adorable embroidery that is sure to make an impression on other pet owners. People will be asking you where they can get a pair!

Of course, your dog’s style is important when it comes to walking, but so is yours. It’s important that you, like your canine companion, are wearing the right footwear for the task. When walking out in the winter, spring, or after rain/snow has fallen, a pair of rain boots is ideal. They keep your feet warm, dry, and free from mud so that you can enjoy your walk.

There are some great rain boots out there for you, many of which will have you looking as stylish as your dog. So when you go out walking together, you can do so with pride.

To Conclude

Giving your canine companion a pair of rain boots or shoes can be really beneficial, both in terms of their health (if they suffer from allergies and such) as well as their safety when walking in urban or littered areas. Plus, they leave them looking really stylish and fashionable. So when you’re thinking about what to get your dog, why not a pair of boots?

 

About the Author

Will is a freelance writer, his blog can be seen here . If you are interested in more information on outdoor clothing, footwear and accessories, then check out his ultimate welly boot guides for more details

Follow Will on Facebook or Google+

Will Tottle

Will Tottle

Dog Smells

posted November 13th, 2016 by
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Dog Smells

5 Tips for Getting Rid of Dog Smells

without Expensive Products

5 Tips for Getting Rid of Dog Smells without Expensive Products There are plenty of great things about owning a dog. Companionship, exercise and love toThere are plenty of great things about owning a dog. Companionship, exercise and love to name a few. But one of the downsides is that “doggy” smell that seems to be impossible to remove.

Considering the benefits of owning a dog, most owners are happy to just accept the smell as part of the deal. Dogs don’t hold themselves to the same hygiene standards as humans, so it’s not a surprise they smell a bit! But the good news is that a dog smell doesn’t need to be an unavoidable side-effect of owning a dog, as we’ll see in this article.

What Causes the Dog Smell?

All animals have a natural smell, but the dog version seems to be particularly strong and distinctive. This is mainly because dogs are larger than other indoor domestic animals, which is why cat owners don’t have a similar problem.

The doggy smell is often caused by paw sweat which is carried around the home. The continuous build-up of sweat and bacteria leads to sofas and other furniture starting to smell.

Smells may also be caused by unconscious scent-marking. Don’t worry – this doesn’t involve urinating on the carpet! Dogs naturally produce a smell to mark their territory, and this is often the main culprit when it comes to a lingering smell in your home. Other causes for a dog smell include skin oil, which is why dogs with oily skin often smell more strongly, and ear wax.

In many cases, the smell is simply because your pet is dirty. Dirt provides the perfect environment for odor-releasing bacteria (just like humans).

Tip #1 – Freshen Up Your Upholstery

Furniture is one of the most commonly overlooked sources of a dog smell. Most people don’t vacuum upholstery as often as carpets, which is why the fabric can harbor odors – especially if your pet loves to sleep on the sofa.

 The first step is to remove and wash any covers that can be machine washed. Use a high heat (check the label first though) to quickly get rid of odor-releasing particles.

For parts of the sofa that can’t be machine washed, baking soda can be useful for getting rid of smells. Just sprinkle it over areas you think are particularly smelly and leave for 2-3 hours, before vacuuming up the powder.

Tip #2 – Wash (And Dry) Your Dog More Regularly

The cleaner your dog, the less he is going to smell. When giving your pet a bath, make sure you check the feet and fur for anything he might have stepped or rolled in. Then use a dog shampoo (don’t use regular shampoo) on his entire body.

Once washed, it’s also important to dry your dog thoroughly. Dog hair is a perfect location for bacteria, which also thrives on moist conditions. This is why “wet dog” is such a distinctive smell!

Unfortunately, most dogs hate having baths. You can often make the process more fun for them by providing the occasional treat throughout the process.

Tip #3 – Get Rid of Carpet Smells

Carpets, wood floors and even vinyl can start to smell if not cleaned regularly. In fact, flooring is probably the most common cause of a dog smell that never seems to go away. This is because your dog’s feet picks up all sorts of bacteria on walks, which are then carried into the home.

For this reason, hard floors should be regularly cleaned with an anti-bacterial floor cleaner that’s suitable for the type of material. The goal isn’t to make the floor look clean, although this is a bonus, but to kill bacteria living on the floor.

You can also use the baking soda trick on carpets to clean areas that smell noticeably bad. Sprinkle the powder on the worst areas and leave it overnight.

Note: if your carpets are heavily soiled, you may need to hire a professional carpet cleaner. This can be expensive, but provides a much cleaner starting point to maintain a smell-free home.

Tip #4 – Vacuum Three Times Each Week

Dog hair isn’t the only thing that drops off your pet. Skin particles, bacteria and dirt are all released from your dog – especially when he shakes after a walk.

That’s why it’s a good idea to vacuum at least three times per week. This sounds like a lot, but you’ll be amazed at how much dirt and hair a vacuum with strong suction will remove from your home even when cleaning regularly.

If you own a steam cleaner, the high pressure output can kill bacteria in carpets and on hard floors. Some steam cleaners also come with an upholstery tool, which can be useful for removing stubborn odors from sofas and other furniture.

Tip #5 – Brush Your Pooch’s Teeth

Finally, bad dog breath is another common source of unwanted odors. The best way to solve this is to regularly clean your dog’s teeth.

Admittedly, many dogs hate having their teeth cleaned. If your pet won’t let you clean his teeth, you can try treats that clean while the dog chews them. These aren’t as effective as a proper toothbrush though.

Summary

An unpleasant smell doesn’t need to be an unavoidable consequence of owning a dog. By following the tips in this post, you can get rid of the dog smell and make your home smell fresh and inviting.

While it’s a good idea to follow all the tips in this post, the most important is keeping your upholstery and carpets as clean as possible. These are reservoirs of bacteria that cause your home to smell, so cleaning them can have a big effect on odors.

- Andrew Webster

Pets and Kids

posted October 16th, 2016 by
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Grooming

Pets and Kids

Pets and kids can be an amazing combination.  They can also be a disastrous combination when safety measures aren’t taken.  Here are some tips to ensure your kids and pets are the perfect pair:

~Teach your children from an early age not to pull on the ears or tails of animals.  They should also never pinch or squeeze them, or make loud noises.  Teach them to never disturb a dog while it is sleeping, eating or playing with its favorite toy.  

~Teach your child to never approach strange dogs or animals.  Always ask the owner if they can pet the animal first. 

~Never allow your child to reach through a fence to pet a dog or to tease a dog through a fence. 

~Don’t allow pets to lick your child’s face and do your best to keep animals out of a child’s face all together.

~Teach your child to be polite and kind to animals.  Don’t let them do anything to an animal you wouldn’t allow them to do to another child. 

Teaching your child to respect animals allows them the opportunity to have some amazing experiences and possibly even develop a best friend for life! 

 

Rib Crib raises $100,000 for Tulsa Charities

posted September 23rd, 2016 by
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Rib Crib

Rib Crib

Rib Crib’s 2016 Pitmasters Golf Tournament

Raises $100,000 for Tulsa Charities

Rib CribTulsa, Okla. – Rib Crib BBQ & Grill will present $100,000 to local Tulsa charities on Sept. 22 at 1p.m. at their company headquarters from proceeds of their 14th annual golf invitational, the 2016 Pitmasters Golf Tournament
In a new twist this year, Rib Crib chose not one, but five local non-profit organizations to benefit from the Pitmasters event. More than 140 golfers came out in support of The Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma, The Children’s Hospital at Saint Francis, the Oklahoma Animal Care Foundation, the Tulsa Zoo and 12&12.

“We are excited to present the tournament proceeds checks to these wonderful community service and enrichment entities on behalf of all of our golfers, sponsors and employees,” said Bret Chandler, Rib Crib founder.

Representing each agency for the check presentations on Thursday will be Eileen Bradshaw, Executive Director of the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma; Kacie Frazier, Program Director at The Children’s Hospital Foundation; Bob Poteet, Trustee of the Oklahoma Animal Care Foundation Board; Terrie Correll, CEO & President at the Tulsa Zoo Foundation; and Bryan Day, CEO of 12&12.

“Our vendors, sponsors and participating golfers’ generosity make these charitable gifts possible, but our Rib Crib employees and volunteers make the day the resounding success it was,” said Chandler. “We are proud and grateful for everyone’s contributions. We are honored to be able to give back to our community in this way.”

The tournament was held at the 18-hole Tillinghast-designed Oaks Country Club last summer, featuring a shot-gun start four-person scramble, hole prizes, an all-you-can-eat Rib Crib BBQ luncheon, and competitive live and silent auctions.
Rib Crib wishes to acknowledge the many contributors of financial, in-kind and services donations to make this tournament and community outreach possible. A special thanks goes to tournament presenting sponsor, Prosperity Bank.
Rib Crib vendors and major sponsors were Andreini and Company, Auto-Chlor Services, Tyson Foods, Saint Francis Health System, The Barkley Law Firm, Barcas, Dr. Pepper, The Holmes Organisation, Curtis Restaurant Supply, McCain Foods and Farmer Brothers. Top sponsors included Ventura Foods, Ben E. Keith Co., Decision Logic, Sweet Street Desserts, Jetlinx, Smithfield and UBS. A special thanks to our many hole sponsors as well as to Waller & Company Public Relations for publicity assistance.

About Rib Crib BBQ & Grill
With 61 locations in eight states, Tulsa-based Rib Crib BBQ & Grill offers a fast casual environment and family-friendly menu featuring a wide variety of hickory-smoked meats served in sandwiches, dinners, salads and combination platters. Open daily for lunch and dinner, Rib Crib’s bold barbecue is perfect for dining in, carryout or catering. The Tulsa-based company with headquarters located at 4535 S. Harvard Ave. For more information about Rib Crib BBQ & Grill, or past tournament charities and team results, visit www.ribcrib.com.

About Rib Crib Tournament 2016 Causes –

The Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma is the largest, private hunger-relief organization in eastern Oklahoma, providing food and other donated product to 450 Partner Programs in 24 counties of eastern Oklahoma and more than 346,000 meals to hungry Oklahomans each week.

The Children’s Hospital at Saint Francis was founded to welcome and foster charitable giving to and to provide and care for the special spiritual, emotional and physical needs of children and their families. Funds raised support pediatric care, programming and facilities for sick children, regardless of their ability to pay.

The Oklahoma Animal Care Foundation is committed to improving the health and welfare of animals in Oklahoma through education, public service and disaster response activities.

The Tulsa Zoo & Living Museum inspires a passion for wildlife in every guest, every day as one of the state’s leading wildlife education and conservation resources. Tulsa Zoo Management, Inc., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, operates the zoo for owner the City of Tulsa. Funds from this event will help build a bigger, better zoo.

12 & 12 offers life-saving recovery tools for adults suffering with addiction or co-existing mental health and substance use disorders to achieve individualized recoveries. They are a leader in the substance abuse and addiction treatment and recovery fields and the largest non-profit addiction treatment facility in the four-state area.

Rib Crib

Gtech Air Ram

posted August 22nd, 2016 by
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Gtech

Gtech Air Ram is a Great Choice for Dog & Cat Owners

 by Will Tottle

GtechFinding a vacuum that will tackle all of that pet hair can be a real struggle, especially if you have multiple dogs in your home. Of course, the extra fluff that comes with moulting season can cause quite a fur dilemma, and many dog owners find themselves vacuuming several times a day.

However, there are vacuums out there that can help you with this problem, and one of them is the Gtech Air Ram – a powerful cordless vacuum that was made with you, the dog owner, in mind. Take a look and see just how suited it is to dog owners.

 

The Key Features

The main features of the Gtech Air Ram are its fantastic cordless design, light weight, smooth steering mechanism, and its ability to charge very quickly. It lasts a surprisingly long time considering it is battery powered, and the recharging time is, as mentioned, superb.

 

Vacuum Performance

This lightweight vacuum cleaner isn’t like your ordinary one, and you will first notice this when it doesn’t stick to the ground like the majority of the others. In fact, the suction power feels quite weak and you may be doubting its capabilities at first.

However, despite its low suction you will be pleasantly surprised by how much it can pick up. Not only does it grab the large chunks of debris, but it will pick up the smaller, dustier pieces as well. From nylon carpet to wood flooring, it will pick the debris up with ease.

It is easy to lift up and down the stairs, and the head is rotatable for smooth control and gliding across the house. It is great for sucking up dirt along skirting boards, and the dual filters prevent fine dust from clogging the motor. It also doesn’t need bags, making emptying it a much quicker and simpler process.

 

The Struggles

There are a couple of things that the vacuum struggles with, however. One of these is very thick carpet (such as shag). While it can grab the larger pieces, the dust and dirt remain after use. It just isn’t powerful enough. This can be a major downside if you have very thick carpets or rugs.

It lacks attachments as well, meaning that you won’t be able to get into the nooks and crannies to get rid of little clumps of dust and debris, nor can you vacuum the furniture. You also can’t get it under the couch if it is less than five inches tall, which can be a little problematic. Many who use it often have a smaller handheld vacuum for the little jobs.

 

To Conclude

This vacuum is a great choice for dog owners, as long as you do not own a very thick carpet. Despite being battery powered it has excellent suction and is very lightweight, making it easy to carry around the house and up the stairs. It is great for getting the loose hair and dirt, and while it cannot reach the smaller areas, handheld vacuums are not expensive so it is easily resolved. With some excellent features and surprising power, it is a brilliant choice to make if you own pets.

We love hearing from you, so let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

About the Author

Will is a freelance writer, his blog can be seen here . If you are interested in more information on anything Vacuum Cleaners or Steam Cleaner related, then check out his ultimate vacuum guides for more details

Follow Will on Facebook or Google+

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