"Bark 'n' Scratch"

Volume III - Issue 23:  August 19, 2005
Published by:
Christopher Aust, Master Trainer

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In Today's Issue ...

=>  Just Visiting? Please Subscribe Here.  ->
=>  Christopher's Drool - Dog Insurgents
=>  Essential Oils and MRSA
=>  Quote of the Week
=>  Mail Bag
=>  Recommended Stuff
=>  Things to Remember as a Dog

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Christopher's Drool

Hey Everybody,

I hope everyone has been having a good couple of weeks. I for one have finally seemed to get back to normal after seeming to be able to get little done. I will be working on a project that I hope will make the web site a little more fun and possibly offer up some surprises for everyone. More details to come in the following weeks.

Every week, I scan all the news articles online to try to bring the latest happenings in the dog world to you all. Usually, I read the articles, do a little research and give my own modest opinion. While I plan to continue to do this from time to time, I have decided to provide you links to the news stories I find the most interesting for one reason or another. This way, you won't have to search for the good stuff yourself.

The ones I pick will not be focused on one particular subject. I hope I will be able to give you a little of everything. To be honest though, there are weeks when all the news on dogs simply sucks. Sorry, but there is simply no other way to put it. When this happens, I will simply not post any links and go on with my own deranged dribble. I hope this addition is something you enjoy. Here are this week's Rover links…





One of the stories I read when putting this together (that is not listed above but you can go to Google and type in “dog insurgents” to read it) told about how terrorists in Iraq are now strapping explosive devices to dogs and sending them out and blowing them up near Iraqi civilians and Iraqi, American and British troops.

Now, I am not going to make any comments about how I feel about the war in Iraq and/or whether I agree with our being there. I served during both Just Cause and Desert Shield-Storm and my thoughts I choose to keep to myself. However…Strapping bombs to dogs! Are you kidding me? What's next? Strapping bombs to toddlers and then sending them to checkpoints to kill the enemy?

What I have found a little amazing is the response from some of the more radical clerics who oppose the presence of troops in Iraq. Even they have “decried the use of canines as proxies in the war.” Keep in mind that many Muslims view dogs as “unclean.”

There are people I have served under, served with and trained currently serving in Iraq and Afghanistan right now. I know the love they have for dogs and, when in combat, a stray dog goes a long way in relieving their suffering, images of war and longing for family. I ask you all to say a prayer for these troops and the dogs involved whether you agree with the war or not. I think we all want them all to survive and make it home in the same condition they left.

Keep those letters and suggestions coming. They are greatly appreciated.

Okay, that's it for now. I'm outta here!



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Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA)

If you are anything like me, you saw the words above and said, “What?” I first heard about it some time back but never really looked at it seriously. However, this is a growing epidemic that, at least in my humble opinion, isn't being addressed as seriously as it should be by the medical establishment.

From what I have been able to determine to date, this infection hasn't been found in animals until recently. Unfortunately, it appears to have quickly reached epidemic proportions. From one report (I can't personally verify) it is believed this infection has reached nearly every vet clinic in the States. That is pretty scary if it's correct.

Over the next few weeks, I will be providing links to reports so you can learn more about this epidemic from the people who truly understand it. For those of you who have been with Bark-n-Scratch for a while, you know I am constantly saying how important it is to be proactive with our furkids health rather than reactive and have shown how health affects behavior. As a result, I feel it is imperative I bring you this information. It won't take over the newsletter, but will be addressed as new information is available.

This week's article was written by Kim Bloomer who is the US Representative for the Bella Moss Foundation, which is dedicated to addressing this very issue. I strongly recommend that you not only read the article in depth, but also go to the links provided. They have truly affected the way I view my own animals health.

Essential Oils and MRSA
by Kim Bloomer

Natural preventative pet care isn't a new thing but it certainly isn't fully mainstream yet. One of the challenges is being able to re-educate the public to think outside of the box. For so many years we've been told over and over again by traditional care providers that our pets need yearly vaccinations, prevention medicines for heartworm, fleas, and ticks, and feeding premium kibble. We've been told these will all lead to ultimate wellness in our pets. Nothing could be further from the truth.

While we continue to struggle with conquering the mountain of "alternative care is for crystal toting, chanting hippies," our pets are getting sicker rather than healthier. One of the most challenging problems on the rise is super resistant bacteria that are increasingly resistant to the traditional use of antibiotics.

Most notably is the rise of MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus). This is a staph infection that the antibiotic methicillin can no longer kill. MRSA is passed from humans to pets and it is still mutating into strains in different species animals. Horses have developed their own strain and antibiotics are not the answer! In fact, the overuse of antibiotics is part of the main reason that these bacteria have mutated and evolved.

This staph infection is deadly and can and does kill humans and animals. In fact, this very thing happened to actress Jill Moss' most beloved white Samoyed, Bella. Jill lost Bella to this staph infection less than a year ago. It prompted Jill to take serious action and bring the knowledge of this deadly strain of bacteria to the world so that other pet owners and people would not have to suffer the loss she has. Jill has instituted the Bella Moss Foundation (http://www.TheBellaMossFoundation.com ) and Pets-MRSA (http://www.Pets-MRSA.com ) to help bring not only knowledge about MRSA, but hope, help and healing.

Research has already begun on finding ways to stop these virulent bacteria. Scientists at the University of Manchester in England have found that three essential oils destroyed MRSA! Dr. Peter Warn, who was involved in the research, told the BBC (British Broadcasting Company) back in December of 2004 that when he tested the oils in the lab, "absolutely nothing grew. Rather than stimulating bacteria and fungi, the oils killed them off."

Marc Shreuder who is the Director of Product Formulation at Young Living, a provider and manufacturer of essential oils, discovered through some searching that two of the oils used were Melaleuca alternafolia and geranium. He also found out that the study done by the Manchester scientists' mentions patchouli, tea tree, geranium and lavender essential oils and grapefruit seed extract but it didn't specify which oil was the third oil in the study. (reference this entire article at http://quikonnex.com/channel/item/14556 )

So why are essential oils proving so effective at killing even the most virulent bacteria such as MRSA? According to Jacqui Stringer, the Clinical Lead of Complementary Therapies at the Christie Hospital in Manchester, England which treats cancer patients, the reason that essential oils are so effective is because they are made up of a complex mixture of chemical compounds which super bugs such as MRSA find difficult to resist.

I would add that because these compounds are naturally occurring and derived from plants –the "blood" of plants – no two oils are exactly alike ever, which is the perfect complex compound to combat a mutating super bug! Current treatments, according to Stringer, are made up of single compounds (like antibiotics) so the MRSA becomes resistant very quickly and leaving only 50% success in the cases of MRSA. Think about that: only a 50/50 chance of survival. Those are not good odds. The hope comes with this new alternative approach to battling these superbugs.

Another added benefit of using essential oils to combat and help prevent (prevention is the goal in stopping MRSA) the spread of MRSA is the application: inhaled either directly or by diffusing them. MRSA is often carried inside the nose so inhaling the essential oils is all that is needed to prevent patients being at risk. This makes them very easy to administer to both humans and pets.

The biggest deterrent to progressing further in the research with the essential oils and combating these superbugs has been funding. In January 2005, the Manchester researchers were having problems obtaining the £30,000 needed for their research to continue. Shortly after finding out about this, Jimmy Savile the former host of the British television program 'Jim'll Fix It", has donated £40,000 for the research to continue! The problem with the funding was that since essential oils are naturally occurring as I stated above, drug companies are really not interested in helping this type of work because they can't profit from a product that is naturally occurring since they can't be patented.

This is really reprehensible since this kind of research could potentially help save thousands of lives and completely stamp out MRSA.

I for one am very excited to see more and more research being done in bringing healing and hope to many, using what God created for us to use in the first place!

News article references (Some may need to be copied and pasted:


About the Author: Kim Bloomer, of Aspenbloom, is a natural pet care educator helping pet owners learn alternative and natural ways to care for their pets. To learn more about the essential oils go to Aspenbloom.com, Kim's pet care website is aspenbloompetcare.com. Visit her dog's blogs to learn more about caring for pets naturally from a canine perspective at Bark-N-Blog.com and natural-pet-care-products.com.

Kim is now the USA Representative for the Bella Moss Foundation.

Quote of the Week

Our dogs, like our shoes, are comfortable. They might be a bit out of shape and a little worn around the edges, but they fit well.

~ Bonnie Wilcox ~

Mail Bag

Hi Christopher,

As soon as I saw this week's article, “How to Give Your Dog Medication,” my immediate response was peanut butter. Many years ago with our first Lab, Alex, we had to give him pills and asked the vet how the heck were we supposed to get him to eat these big pills, and our vet said put them in peanut butter.

Well I wish someone had taken a picture because I am sure my husband and my jaws must have dropped to our chins as we both replied "peanut butter." Well, little did we know that peanut butter would be our salvation with all of our dogs. In fact, many of them, would bark at the peanut butter cabinet just to get a spoonful without the pill.

Also, kudos to you on making your children eat what is in front of them, as so many parents today, let the children dictate what is put on the table rather than the adult.

Thanks for another great issue!



Your information about pilling a dog couldn't have come at a better time. My dog had been placed on antibiotics and was refusing to take the pills until I broke them up in her food. She never even realized I had given them to her and we no longer have to wrestle her to make sure she is getting what she needs. Thanks for the wonderful information.


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Joke of the Week

Things to Remember as a Dog

* The garbage collector is not stealing our stuff.

* I do not need to suddenly stand straight up when I'm lying under the coffee table.

* I will not roll my toys behind the fridge, behind the sofa or under the bed.

* I must shake the rainwater out of my fur before entering the house.

* I will not eat the cats' food, before they eat it or after they throw it up.

* I will stop trying to find the few remaining pieces of clean carpet in the house when I am about to get sick.

* I will not throw up in the car.

* I will not roll on dead seagulls, fish, crabs, etc. just because I like the way they smell.

* "Kitty box crunchies," although they are tasty, are not food.

* I will not eat any more Kleenex or napkins and then re-deposit them in the backyard after processing.

* The diaper pail is not a cookie jar.

* I will not chew my human's toothbrush and not tell them.

* I will not chew crayons or pens, especially not the red ones, or my people will think I am hemorrhaging.

* When in the car, I will not insist on having the window rolled down when it's raining outside.

* We do not have a doorbell. I will not bark each time I hear one on TV.

* I will not steal my mom's underwear and dance all over the backyard with it.

* The sofa is not a face towel. Neither are mom and dad's laps.

* My head does not belong in the refrigerator.

* I will not bite the officer's hand when he reaches in for dad's driver's license and car registration.

* I will not play tug-of-war with dad's underwear when he's on the toilet.

* Have a joke you'd like to submit to us? Joke@Master-Dog-Training.com

Thank You For Reading!  Have a Terrific Week!

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The Legal Mumbo-Jumbo

The BARK 'n' SCRATCH Newsletter is published by Christopher Aust Copyright © 2005 All rights reserved. No portion of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted without the express written consent of the publisher or contributors.

We accept no responsibility for your use of any contributed information contained herein. All of the information presented in BARK 'n' SCRATCH is published in good faith. Any comments stated in this newsletter are strictly the opinion of the writer or publisher.

We reserve the right to edit and make suitable for publication, if necessary, any articles published in this newsletter. We reserve the right to publish all reader comments, including the name of the writer.

Christopher Aust, Master Dog Trainer & Creator:
The Natural Cooperative Training System (NCTS) for Dogs
The Instinctual Development System (IDS) for Puppies

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