The Maned Wolf– Wild Dog of South America

The maned wolf of South America is not a wolf at all, but a wild dog–but  it looks like a cross between a wolf and a fox.  Maned wolves live in open grasslands, on the edges of forests or in the marshlands of Brazil, Paraguay, Bolivia and Argentina. Taller than any other wild dogs, maned […]

Paynes Prairie State Park

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Granny Buys an RV

A few years ago when I was in my mid-seventies, I bought an RV—a 32-foot Class C Dodge that had been driven all over the U.S. by missionaries for 35 years.  After having the vehicle repaired and restored to good working condition, I planned to camp in Florida state parks with my dog.  For my […]

The Wonderful Banana Spider

Walking on a pier recently in Cedar Key, Florida, my daughter Amy and I spotted a large spider web stretched over the handrails.  A banana spider the size of my hand sat in the middle.  I handed Amy my camera. Not until I transferred the photo to my computer at home did I appreciate the spider’s […]

My Pet Memorial Garden

A pet memorial garden sits among the trees in my yard.  A sculpture of three happy old women on a wooden fence overlooks the gravestones of pets who have lived with me over the last thirty years.  The “Grandmothers” were created by Kirsten Engstrom, an artist from Hawthorne, Florida. She also made the monk that […]

When Dogs Go Blind

The good life isn’t over for dogs who go blind.  If they don’t have eye pain—which most don’t—and the disease that caused the blindness is treatable, they can lead happy lives.  For example, my blind dog Trudy has underlying Cushing’s disease, which can be controlled with drugs, although she’ll never get her sight back.  She […]

NEWS FLASH–Louis Pasteur Busts Fruit Flies

Fruit flies appear from nowhere.  You leave a ripe peach on the kitchen counter for more than a day—Voila!  You’ve got fruit flies.  You’ve no idea how they found you. No wonder people use to believe in “spontaneous generation”—the theory that insects and other small living things can arise from dead matter without going through […]

Dogs with SARDS & Cushing’s Disease

Sudden acquired retinal degeneration syndrome (SARDS) is a disease that causes rapid blindness in dogs–usually, within a few days to a couple of months. For some unexplained reason, the cells in the dog’s retina start breaking down. The disease can be diagnosed with electroretinography—a test similar to an EKG. While the dog is under anesthesia, electrodes […]

My Friend Kari

Kari Bagnall began her whirlwind career as a primary sanctuary director when she opened Jungle Friends on 12 acres of land north of Gainesville, Florida, in 1999. Until her early forties, she was a successful interior designer in Las Vegas. Kari’s love of monkeys began when her live-in boyfriend brought home a baby capuchin in […]

Droid Addiction

At an upscale restaurant with two women friends the other night, I watched one play with her android nonstop during dinner.  She showed us over 100 photos taken with several cameras on the device.  She pulled up Google Earth and other apps and played with them.  The conversation was never allowed to stray far from […]

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Pig– A True Animal Escape Story

As a truckload of pigs was being unloaded at a slaughterhouse in England, two pigs escaped and ran away.  They disappeared into a cornfield as fast as their legs could carry them. Slaughterhouse workers pursued the pigs but lost sight of them.  The police were called and joined the chase.  Finally, reporters showed up. These […]

Got Coyotes?

Got coyotes in your neighborhood?   Don’t laugh.  Coyotes now live in almost every state in the U.S. Not just in the countryside, either. Many have found their way into cities.  According to a recent wildlife study, Chicago now has over 2000 resident coyotes. These feral dogs, once found only in the West, have slowly migrated east over the […]