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Posts from the ‘pit bull dogs’ Category

All I Want for Christmas is Dog DNA

I have a confession to make. Along with reading piles of magazines, taking quizzes is one of my favorite guilty pleasures in life.  I’ll take short, silly quizzes (If I were a loaf of bread, what kind of bread would I be?) and long, involved personality tests, like the Myers Briggs. I take them for fun or to help me figure out my strengths and weaknesses. I’ve taken countless career assessment tests, all of which tell me I should be a therapist, a teacher, or a minister. I may not listen to the results, but I really like taking the tests.

So when I discovered that I could do a cheek swab DNA test at home on my two dogs, Birdie and Boogie, I was powerless to resist. I didn’t care what the results were (I love them no matter what). I didn’t care if the tests were 100% accurate. I just wanted to give my mixed breed dogs the ultimate quiz! So as a Hanukkah and Christmas gift to myself, I ordered two DNA test kits from Wisdom. Last month I swabbed their cheeks, sent the kits back to the lab, and have been patiently waiting for the results to come back.


birdie and boogie

photo by Meredith Purdue © 2011 Maine Dog Photography & unlimited dogs


Side Note: For any of you interested in doing this, swabbing the inside of a dog’s cheek turned out to be a little trickier than I thought it would be. Birdie wanted to eat the swab and then I fumbled it on the way out of her mouth, causing it to rub against the palm of my hand. Luckily, they give you two swabs per dog, so I got a second chance to do it right.  I sent both swabs back, per the instructions, and figured if Birdie’s DNA results came back as a Jewish Beagle from New Jersey, this kit was legit.

I just got the test results back and I’m dying to share, but before I do, here’s a little quiz for you. Take a look at their photos below and, in the comments section, give me your best guesses on what breed mix you think they might be. I’ll reveal the actual results later this week!

Here are some hints:

Birdie is 40 pounds and she was listed as a “Beagle Mix” on her adoption paperwork.

Boogie is 50 pounds and he was labeled a “Pit Bull” on his adoption paperwork.

(DNA test info:  Because Boogie has been labeled a pit bull, I should share that Wisdom cannot test for the breed “pit bull”, due to the genetic diversity of dogs within this group. However other dog breeds, that were historically related to the American Pit Bull Terrier, often show up in DNA tests – for instance: American Staffordshire Terrier, American Bulldog, and the Boston Terrier.  If you’d like to read more, Wisdom explains it here.)

Let the guessing begin!

Living with DINOS™: A Resource Guide

Living with DINOS isn't always easy, but you're not alone and there is help! Check out the tools, classes, and techniques that have made a difference for the DINOS community...

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Super Tough Dog Toys: GoughNuts

Those of us that have dogs who destroy toys in seconds tend to spend a lot of money buying “tough” toys that turn out to be real duds.  And you quickly discover that even the ones that are “guaranteed” tough, tend to get ripped to pieces in less time than it took to go to the store to buy the toy in the first place.

If your dog destroys everything, I highly recommend GoughNuts.  They’re more expensive than your average toy, but they’re worth every penny, because they really do last. So in the end you save money because you aren’t wasting money on other flimsy toys.

These super tough, solid toys are so hard-core, I know a family with three pit bulls who have been playing with a single black ring for over a year. Subjected to heavy use, it still doesn’t have a dent in it. Dude. That’s what a tough toy is supposed to be. Ammirite?

The toys come in green and black.  Rubber loses some of its strength when coloring is added to it, so the black ones are the tougher of the two colors. My own dog, Boogie, who rips apart “Tuffies” and other toys designed for heavy chewers, didn’t know what to do with the large black ring. He would pick it up, give me a look that said, “Oy! This is heavy!”, run a few steps and drop it from exhaustion. I finally got him the lighter green ring, same size, and it suited him better for playing and chewing.

That’s the first time I’ve had to find a less-tough toy for Boogie!


Not only are they super tough, but they have a nice safety feature – the inner red core.  If your dog does manage to do some damage, then you know it’s still safe for them to play with until you can see the red core. I’ve never seen the red core, because I’ve never seen a damaged GoughNuts in real life, but I believe that it exists.

And if that’s not enough, they float too.

The pet store where I used to work sold these, and every time I sent one home, I would ask the customers to let me know if their dogs were able to rip these up.  Not one customer had a dog that destroyed these and never once did they get returned. This was unheard of from a customer-base who liked to return bags of $80 kibble, nearly empty, wanting their money back because the dog didn’t “like” the food.

GoughNuts are the real deal folks. And they don’t get paid to say that…I’m just tough toy fangirl.

Check out the website here and, if you buy one, let me know if your dog can crack this nut!

Breed Standards and Individuality in Dogs. It’s not one or the other:

 From Patricia McConnell, Ph.D. in this month’s Bark Magazine, discussing lessons learned from two Border Collies, one of which loved herding sheep in an open field, the other not so much: “It is a cautionary tale with two parts: One, dog breeds were created not for looks but for behavior, and we need to do a better job of matching a dog’s needs with the environment in which he or she will ultimately live. Two, all dogs, no matter how pure or eclectic their breeding, are individuals…Two Border Collies, two individuals.” Good advice whether you’re an adoption counselor or a policy maker: Reference breed standards, be honest about what you know for sure, but ultimately respect the dog that’s right in front of us, knowing that many dogs never got the memo about how they’re “supposed” to act based on their looks or breed

Who needs reindeer when you can use pit bulls to pull your sleigh?



Get your holiday cards from StubbyDog this year and spread the pit bull cheer!