Dogs are not just “man’s best friend”; they have a history of building lives with human beings, and contributing unique skills to improve lives, sometimes saving them. In other cases they’ve survived events such as the sinking of the Titanic, or learned to scuba-dive. We go into five cool facts about dogs in the world, local and international.
Amazing Dog Facts
Microchips Save Their Lives
If you have a dog, please have a vet or a shelter install a microchip. This is a miniature device that emits a radio frequency, no bigger than a grain, that goes under your pet’s skin. (These can also be installed on cats.) It causes no discomfort after surgically inserted, allotting for recovery time. No matter the dog breed, a microchip is essential.
Sometimes dogs will vanish, due to being startled by fireworks or gunshot, or getting lost during a natural disaster. If this happens, the people who rescue your dog can scan the chip to find your address and contact information. That way your dog won’t end up at a shelter or re-homed, and you can reunite sooner.
St. Bernards Were Trained To Rescue Avalanche Victims
In Switzerland, monks in the 1700s trained St. Bernards to rescue people trapped in the snow due to avalanches. They traveled from the Hospice du Grand St-Bernard to explore the mountain pass, which can receive up to 8,000 feet of precipitation. As technology evolved, the monks switched to using helicopters but the image of a St. Bernard digging in the snow with a flask — the later was fiction– imprinted in people’s memories of mountain rescues.
Even today, several St. Bernards are trained in Canada for this work as part of rescue teams when skiers and hikers go off-trail during snowy weather. They also serve as mascots for ski resorts where they work, serving as a friendly face for younger visitors. The dogs have thick coats that allow them to withstand freezing temperatures as well as an affectionate temperament.
Greyhounds Can Outrun Cheetahs But Prefer To Chill
You may know that greyhounds were bred to run. When racing with cheetahs in theory, they can win in long-distance marathons but will lose in a sprint. Their bodies compensate for the speed by increasing their heartbeats to 300-360 beats per minute (BPM).
It may seem counterintuitive that a breed that specializes in running would rather be a couch potato. The answer lies in the energy demand: a dog that can reach high speeds would rather minimize the attempt unless it is absolutely necessary. That much running can exhaust any animal, and they need to rest to recover the same amounts. Greyhounds as a result are heavy nappers, which work for dog owners who wish to chill.
Labrador Retrievers Specialized In Duck Hunting
There are two types of Labrador Retrievers: American and British. While British Labradors are calmer, American Labradors were bred for intelligence and high-energy. They were both raised to fetch waterfowl after dog owners made a kill. As a result, Labradors are great swimmers and love the water. They’re also happy to play fetch.
If you have a Labrador, take them out on frequent walks and playtime, and definitely get training to harness their energy. Make sure to have high fences with little digging room, because they can jump high and try to go under fences to escape.
You Reduce Blood Pressure When Petting A Dog
Science has investigated what happens when you pet a dog. A 2002 study called Animal-Assisted Interventions Research Issues and Answers found that doing it for fifteen minutes can reduce blood pressure by fifteen percent. It also releases hormones such as serotonin, which will improve your mood.
Schedule regular cuddle time, depending on your dog’s temperament and boundaries. Otherwise, reach out and give a morning scratch behind the ears. Both you and your dog will appreciate it.
Learn More Fun Facts About Dogs And Adoption From RescueStrays
RescueStrays is determined to encourage pet owners to sponsor or adopt dogs that need homes. For those who cannot house a dog, sponsoring one at our shelters gives them more comfort and resources to take care of them.
Reach out to us today to learn more about sponsoring a dog or a cat at RescueStrays. You can learn more about the different breeds, and to save a life while learning fascinating facts.