ThinkStock
ThinkStock

11 Strange Products You Can Purchase for Your Pooch

ThinkStock
ThinkStock

If you forgot to buy your four-legged pal an extra-special stocking stuffer on Black Friday, fear not—one of these nifty dog presents might fit the bill (provided you don’t mind drawing odd looks from the neighbors).

1. Bowser Beer 

Wag

“Is your dog drinking responsibly?” asks the official Bowser Beer website. You can even have your pet’s face printed on the label when you order a six-pack of this non-alcoholic brew. Be advised, however, that the drinks come with beef and chicken flavoring, so human consumption might not end well.

2. Sexy Beast Perfume 

Global Package Gallery

The first of many doggy beautification products on this list, “Sexy Beast” is a unisex aroma designed to spruce up your dog without confounding his or her refined sense of smell.

3. Purebreed Political Propaganda 

Obey the Purebreed

Fun Fact: Dogs have been quietly taking over the world for decades. If you welcome our new canine overlords, here’s a great way to show your support. Thanks to the folks at obeythepurebreed.com, one can purchase revolutionary dog portraits complete with Marxist headgear and Soviet backgrounds. “Chairman Meow” décor is also available for cat-fanciers.

4. Humunga Lips Dog Toy

Wag

Rover will look like a furry Angelina Jolie thanks to this unique little toy. Giant red lips are attached to a “chewy, durable ball” which allegedly “makes for some laugh-out-loud games of ‘fetch.’” Of course, this is assuming that you actually want your dog to retrieve this thing after throwing it away.

5. Pawlish Nail Polish

BangStyle

If you’re a dog owner with a keen sense of fashion and superhuman patience, why not paint her claws? With colors like “poodle pink” and “fire hydrant red,” what glitzy dog could resist? Though the website no longer works, a few bottles are available on eBay.

6. Songs to Make Dogs Happy

After observing the reactions of “over 200 canine participants” to an assortment of musical genres, the good folks at Laurel Canyon Animal Company released a CD filled with original songs designed to encourage tail-wagging in doggy listeners. Don’t believe me? Check out their head-scratching single “Squeaky-Deaky,” above.

7. People Crackers For Dogs

Nowadays, your pooch can have the satisfaction of eating a people-shaped snack food without developing a taste for human flesh. It’s a win-win!

8. Treat Launcher

Lethargic dog-lovers, your prayers have been answered! This gun-like accessory fires pieces of kibble up to ten feet away, turning feeding time into a high-intensity spectacle. May the odds be ever in your favor, Fido!

9. Puppy Tweets

ThinkStock

Funny, I used to think “doggy Twitter” meant piddling on fire hydrants. But thanks this state-of-the-art tag, whenever your dog moves or barks, a Tweet is sent to her customized Twitter feed. That’s right, now you can monitor every single thing she does twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.

10. Rear Gear Butt Cover 

Etsy

From the official website: “Rear Gear is a fun and enchanting way of covering your pet’s rear while boosting [its] confidence!” So what is it? A colorful sticker that dangles over its buttocks (“No more Mr. Brown eye!” boasts the slogan).

11. The Poop Tent 

Amazon

Now Max can have peace of mind when he defecates. If the weather outside is frightful, set up one of these waterproof tents so he can relieve himself in bliss. Plus, it’s shaped like a grinning puppy for good measure.

nextArticle.image_alt|e
iStock
arrow
Health
Canine Flu is On the Rise: Here's What You Should Know
iStock
iStock

It's been eight years since the World Health Organization announced the end of the swine flu pandemic, and now the condition is back in the news for infecting a different type of host. As Live Science reports, the H1N1 virus is mixing with canine flu to create new strains that could potentially spread to people.

Dog flu has been around for a couple of decades, but the two main canine strains, H3N8 and H3N2, have never been contracted by humans. According to a new study published in mBio, some dogs in the Guangxi region of China were found carrying H1N1, the flu strain at the root of the swine flu outbreak. Researchers also discovered three entirely new flu strains that were a combination of H1N1 and regular dog flu viruses.

The unrecognized flu strains are the most troubling discovery. As the flu travels between species, it mingles with viruses that are already there, creating a level of genetic diversity that leaves our immune systems, which are best equipped to fight strains they've already been exposed to, vulnerable. The swine flu epidemic of 2009 started in a similar way, when H1N1 jumped from birds to pigs, and eventually to people.

But the new report isn't a reason to banish your pet to the doghouse next time she seems under the weather. The virus samples were collected from dogs in China between 2013 and 2015, and in the years since, zero humans have caught influenza from dogs (though dog flu has started spreading to cats). If the virus continues mutating to the point where it can infect humans, both the CDC and U.S. Department of Agriculture will take action. But for now, the CDC states that canine flu viruses "pose a low threat to people."

Canine flu may not be dangerous to humans yet, but it can still be stressful for dog owners if their pet comes down with a case. Ask your vet about getting your dog vaccinated, and if you see your dog coughing, sneezing, and acting less energetic than usual, make an appointment to get him checked out as soon as possible. If he does have the flu, he can be treated with plenty of rest and hydration.

[h/t Live Science]

nextArticle.image_alt|e
Courtesy of Wellness Natural Pet Food
arrow
Live Smarter
America's Most Pet-Friendly Workplaces
Courtesy of Wellness Natural Pet Food
Courtesy of Wellness Natural Pet Food

Being able to bring your dog to work is a huge perk. So huge, in fact, that 37 percent of pet parents would sacrifice benefits like vacation time or even take a pay cut for the ability to bring their pet to the office, according to Wellness Natural Pet Food, which recently released its second annual list of America’s Most Pet-Friendly Companies.

All 10 companies on the list allow you to bring your dog along every single day. Tito's Handmade Vodka in Austin, Texas grabbed the number one spot, with San Francisco's Petcube (which makes interactive dog treat cameras) coming in second and Boston's Harpoon Brewery taking third.

The benefits of being able to bring your dog to your job are manifold. You eliminate the need to hire a dog walker or petsitter, you're not distracted by worrying about how Fido is faring alone in the house or obsessively checking the security cameras, and you get to have the company of your furry friend to keep you happy while you're working. Petcube in particular has some seriously over-the-top benefits for dog owners, including dog walking services, pet insurance, and on-demand vet consultations. Health and fitness supply company Zogics, which is based in Lenox, Massachusetts and ranked seventh on the list, offers "pawternity" leave for new dog moms and dads.

Wellness's survey also found that 44 percent of pet parents say they would consider a career change if it meant a pet-friendly workplace. The benefits of having an adorable pup around are undeniable: 32 percent of respondents feel they would be more productive with a pet at the office.

Check out the full list here (Alas, Pied Piper isn't on it). And if you're lucky enough to have a pet-friendly office, don't forget to bring your pooch along for Take Your Dog to Work Day on June 22.

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios