Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Pet shops I would not recommend in KL

Wow it has been a long time since I  last blogged here. I haven't really got much time to do blogging, but here's a little something that I feel I should blog about.

Although I have moved from Penang to KL for almost 2 years, I still take the trouble to bring my 2 dogs, Snow and Jessy back to Penang for their grooming. I don't go back that often but I try to at least once in every 3 to 4 months and their grooming can usually last that long. Even if it doesn't I'll just do a little simple grooming on my own in the meantime.

My favorite place in Penang is Sugar Rae Pet Village I love bringing my dogs there coz firstly, the owner there, Aunty Kim is fantastic. She's good with dogs, her helpers are good with dogs as well. Best of all, I trust them completely to put my dogs there for boarding for a long time, if needs be. They do not cage the dogs. They have cubicles for the dogs and that is what I like about this place.

Over here in KL, we hardly find a place like Sugar Rae. One, most of the pet shops in KL do not have cubicles for dogs. They have cages. And worse of all, the cages are stacked one on top of the other in a room and it stinks.

I recently let my dogs got for boarding. Only 2 nights coz I was moving house. I sent my dogs to a pet shop (I shall not name them) located at the next road from my office at Bukit Jalil.

Here are my complaints about that specific pet shop :
1. The owner could not handle dogs. I find that a little nonsensical coz firstly not all dogs are yappy little shih-tzu. Some people do have big dogs and if one can open a pet shop that provide grooming services, then they should be able to handle all types of dogs.

2. My dogs are caged in a room with at least 10 more cages and all that was provided is a tiny fan. The whole room stinks. How do I know about the condition of the room ... well obviously because the owner of the shop do not dare go near by dog to carry it. And no, I do not have a big huge dog, just a mix breed Snow. 

3. Snow came back with insect bites all over him and with sores. He went there perfect and came back with sores. I guess then that place must be so extremely dirty to the extent there are insects around to bite the dogs.

Now why do you think I take the trouble to bring my dogs back to Penang.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Jessy

Here's a little bit about my Jessy.

How did she come into my life .. well, I wanted a dog and went searching for one. Bought a miniature pincher but that puppy was too whinny and I took it back to the seller. Then back to searching I go and stumbled on a cute fluffy white dog in a pet shop in Penang. I fell in love with it immediately and ended up buying him and naming him Snow. Well, Snowball to be exact but then mum said Snowball is a little to long so it was shortened to Snow.

Then Snow became very naughty, I didn't exactly know how to train a dog and I've decided to take him to training classes. Found online that this pet shop in Tanjung Bungah offered training classes for dogs. Went there to have a look and somehow, my sister stumbled on Jessy instead. She was sitting quietly on the sofa and if my sister had not sat there, she would not even be noticed.

Somehow, the pet show owner didn't really wanted Jessy. She was only for breeding purposes and I bought Jessy from the shop. That was how Jessy came into my life.

She was a very shy and timid dog and after so many years, she grew accustomed to us. She has also developed a fondness for meat, especially chicken and her weight went up to almost double since she first came.

She is however unwell at this moment. The vet found poison in her liver and she has lost a lot of weight as she was not eating well. Taking her to see the vet tomorrow. Hopefully she will get better.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

A little somethings ...

It has been more than a year since I last posted on this blog. 

I started this blog for my 2 dogs .. Snow and Jessy, and eventually it became a blog for my countless hamsters and all other dog care and misc stuffs as well. In the midst of posting about all these, I seemed to have forgotten the main objective of this blog .. which is my 2 dogs. 

In fact, I've realised that I've never really written anything about them at all. And to think that people actually write a book about their dogs!! I did not even write a post about them!! So from now on, I'm going to at least try to start writing about my dogs. Not that I want my posts to be published, nor do I intend to write a book about them, but just little somethings to remind me of them when they're gone. 

Monday, October 3, 2011

In loving memory ...
 
Piggie Hamster V

I've got lots of hamsters and they're all named Piggie. Don't know how I came up with that name but somehow, they kinda stuck and I named every single one of them Piggie (with the exception of other hamsters, of course) This Piggie however, was adopted from a friend who could not care for them coz she's going back to Australia and this Piggie was my very first 'all white' Piggie. My other Piggie hamsters are usually brown. This particular Piggie is also very extremely tame and the very first hamster to sleep on his back!! How cute!!! Anyway, he's gone now ... very old indeed. I missed him. I shall always remember him as my only adopted hamster, one that is super greedy but yet only eats kinda healthy food and one who sleeps on his back!!! 












Now, that's what I call a cat nap!

Some will be dreaming of a bowl of milk, others of a tussle with a ball of string. After the overwhelming response from readers to pictures of snoozing pups in the Mail last month, meet the kittens catching 40 winks — as opposed to mice. As you can see, they’re all in a state of purr-fect bliss . . .

Paws for reflection: You wouldn't expect an aristocat like me to sleep in a basket - I'm feline fine right where I am
Catatonic: With any luck, I can stretch this nap out for a little longer . . .

That darn cat: Playing with wool is exhausting

In this house, I’m part of the furniture.

Cat's whiskers: I'm having a lovely dream all about sardines

Bear hug: Teddy and I are just close friend. 

That’s enough cataloguing: I’ll look for that Cats DVD later

I'm Tom, he's Jerry: And you won't hear a squeak out of us for a while

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

How Could You?

When I was a puppy, I entertained you with my antics and made you laugh. You called me your child, and despite a number of chewed shoes and a couple of murdered throw pillows, age I became your best friend. Whenever I was"bad," you'd shake your finger at me and ask "How could you?"-but then you'd relent, and roll me over for a bellyrub.

My housebreaking took a little longer than expected, because you were terribly busy, but we worked on that together. I remember those nights of nuzzling you in bed and listening to your confidences and secret dreams,and I believed that life could not be any more perfect. We went for long walks and runs in the park, car rides, stops for ice cream (I only got the cone because "ice cream is bad for dogs," you said), and I took long naps in the sun waiting for you to come home at the end of the day.

Gradually, you began spending more time at work and on your career, and more time searching for a human mate. I waited for you patiently, comforte you through heartbreaks and disappointments, never chided you about bad decisions, and romped with glee at your homecomings, and when you fell in love. She, now your wife, is not a "dog person"-still I welcomed her into our home, tried to show her affection, and obeyed her. I was happy because you were happy.

Then the human babies came along and I shared your excitement. I was fascinated by their pinkness, how they smelled, and I wanted to mother them, too. Only she and you worried that I might hurt them, and I spent most of my time banished to another room, or to a dog crate. Oh, how I wanted to love them, but I became a "prisoner of love."

As they began to grow, I became their friend. They clung to my fur and pulled themselves up on wobbly legs, poked fingers in my eyes, investigated my ears, and gave me kisses on my nose. I loved everything about them and their touch-because your touch was now so infrequent-and I would have defended them with my life if need be. I would sneak into their beds and listen to their worries and secret dreams, and together we waited for the sound of your car in the driveway.

There had been a time, when others asked you if you had a dog, that you produced a photo of me from your wallet and told them stories about me.

These past few years, you just answered "yes" and changed the subject. I had gone from being "your dog" to "just a dog," and you resented every expenditure on my behalf.

Now, you have a new career opportunity in another city, and you and they will be moving to an apartment that does not allow pets. You've made the right decision for your "family," but there was a time when I was your only family. I was excited about the car ride until we arrived at the animal shelter. It smelled of dogs and cats, of fear, of hopelessness. You filled out the paperwork and said "I know you will find a good home for her."

They shrugged and gave you a pained look. They understand the realities facing a middle-aged dog, even one with "papers." You had to pry your son's fingers loose from my collar as he screamed "No, Daddy! Please don't let them take my dog!" And I worried for him, and what lessons you had just taught him about friendship and loyalty, about love and responsibility, and about respect for all life. You gave me a good-bye pat on the head, avoided my eyes, and politely refused to take my collar and leash with you. You had a deadline to meet and now I have one, too.

After you left, the two nice ladies said you probably knew about your upcoming move months ago and made no attempt to find me another good home.

They shook their heads and asked "How could you?"

They are as attentive to us here in the shelter as their busy schedules allow. They feed us, of course, but I lost my appetite days ago. At first, whenever anyone passed my pen, I rushed to the front, hoping it was you- that you had changed your mind-that this was all a bad dream ... or Ihoped it would at least be someone who cared, anyone who might save me.

When I realized I could not compete with the frolicking for attention of happy puppies, oblivious to their own fate, I retreated to a far corner and waited.

I heard her footsteps as she came for me at the end of the day, and I padded along the aisle after her to a separate room. A blissfully quiet room.

She placed me on the table and rubbed my ears, and told me not to worry. My heart pounded in anticipation of what was to come, but there was also a sense of relief. The prisoner of love had run out of days. As is my nature, I was more concerned about her.

The burden which she bears weighs heavily on her, and I know that, the same way I knew your every mood. She gently placed a tourniquet around my foreleg as a tear ran down her cheek. I licked her hand in the same way I used to comfort you so many years ago. She expertly slid the hypodermic needle into my vein. As I felt the sting and the cool liquid coursing through my body, I lay down sleepily, looked into her kind eyes and murmured "How could you?"

Perhaps because she understood my dogspeak, she said "I'm so sorry." She hugged me, and hurriedly explained it was her job to make sure I went to a better place, where I wouldn't be ignored or abused or abandoned, or have to fend for myself-a place of love and light so very different from this earthly place. And with my last bit of energy, I tried to convey to her with a thump of my tail that my "How could you?" was not directed at her.

It was you, My Beloved Master, I was thinking of. I will think of you and wait for you forever.

May everyone in your life continue to show you so much loyalty.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Ears


Because of variations among breeds' ears—some are pointy, others floppy—a dog's ears are a little harder to read, but in general, the same principles for cats apply. "When your dog is relaxed, comfortable and under no stress, her ears will be held in the natural position. When your dog is alert and watching something closely, her ears will be raised and turned to whatever she is paying attention to," says Dr. Burch. In addition, she says, if the ears are gently pulled back, it’s a “sign of a friendly greeting.” If the ears are completely pulled down and back, however, your pooch is most likely feeling afraid.


Eyes 


People use the term "puppy-dog eyes" for good reason: A dog's eyes can practically express the same emotional diversity as a human's. "When a dog is stressed or frightened, the eyes are not as wide open and they appear smaller. If the dog starts to squint (assuming there is no sun in his eyes), it could be a sign he is in pain," Dr. Burch says. Not only will a dog change the size and shape of its eyes, but the direction of its gaze is also a clear indicator of mood. Be forewarned that if a dog stares at you squarely in the eyes, or avoids looking at you in a way that lets the whites of his eyes show, he's on the defensive, so steer clear. 


Mouth 

A dog baring its teeth is a universal sign of aggression, but many people don’t know that a dog can also express other feelings with its mouth. "When your dog is relaxed, its mouth is usually closed or open just a small bit. Dogs who are stressed or afraid often close their mouth and the lips are pulled back at the corners," says Dr. Burch. To better understand your dog's mood, it helps to factor in its whole body, advises McMillan Loehr. "One interesting thing dogs do that can be mistaken for aggression is the submissive grin; that's when they pull their lips back from their teeth, which might make you think the dog is going to kill you," she says. "Put it in context with the rest of the body.” If her posture is relaxed and not stiff, “she might be doing a submissive grin." 



Tail


While a wagging tail generally does mean that a dog is happy or excited, that's not always the case, according to Dr. Burch. "One of the greatest myths regarding canine body language has to do with the dog’s tail. The myth is that a wagging tail is the sign of a friendly dog," she says. "A dog that is thinking about attacking may hold his tail high and move it back and forth. The key is to look at the rest of the body; if you see the wagging tail with stiff legs, tense muscles and lips that are starting to be pulled back, you could be in for some trouble." 


Body Posture


A dog's body posture tells a similar story to that of a cat. "Aggressive dogs try to make themselves look as big as possible. Their legs are stiff and they sometimes rise up on their toes. Dogs that are afraid may lower their bodies, dropping to the ground as if to say, 'It’s OK, I’m so tiny and small, I’m not a threat,'" says Dr. Burch. The one posture that people seem to misunderstand the most, says McMillan Loehr, is when dogs freeze. "A dog who is panting and then stops panting—that's a sign that something is about to happen. A freeze is a sign that a dog is getting uncomfortable and it is often a threat," she says. Signs a dog is happy include an open mouth that looks relaxed and a shift in weight from side to side. Another big cue, adds Dr. Halligan, is when their body is curved into a C shape, which is called a "play bow." 


Sounds 

If your dog’s movements aren’t telling you enough, listen to his bark. Barking can indicate any number of things. According to Dr. Burch, you have to take it in context. "Barking related to play will usually be accompanied with a relaxed body posture and sometimes a wagging tail, whereas barks that are short, insistent yips can mean 'Stop that!'" she says. "If you see a stiff body along with a low-pitched growl, the barking can be a warning sign; also, some dogs have barks that are intended to get your attention." And then there’s watchdog barking, which is a series of short and loud barks. "It’s a warning or alert bark designed to let you know someone is coming—and to let [whoever that is] know there is a dog here that is ready to handle the situation," Dr. Burch says.


Behavior


When all else fails, watch for significant behavioral changes. Destructive behavior, like chewing things, is a big cue your dog is not happy. "The number-one reason they're destructive is that they're not getting out enough or being exercised enough," Dr. Halligan says. Another cue that something's amiss about their mental state is a drastic change in behavior—sleeping in a different place, hiding more or sleeping more than usual.

9 Things Your Dog Wants to Tell You

We like to ascribe all sorts of emotions to our dogs, but, truth be told, they are much simpler than humans. They’re motivated by the basics:  food, activity and companionship. That said, a dog’s behavior around his owners does have meaning. From the desire to protect you to an intuition about your health and happiness, read on to discover what your dog would tell you if he could speak.

 “I want to protect you.” 

You may think your dog belongs to you, but you belong to your dog, as well. That means he is going to claim you and protect you. "When he's sitting on your foot, it's an ownership thing. If his [bottom] is on you, he's marking your foot," says Jennifer Brent, animal advocate and external relations manager for the L.A.-based non profit animal welfare advocacy group Found Animals. "It's not just that he wants to be close to you, he's saying, 'This is mine; now it smells like me, don't go near it.' He does this for three main reasons: to feel secure about his place in your life, to warn other dogs that you are spoken for and because he wants to protect you.” To ensure your protection, dogs will also bark at guests, growl at other dogs when outside and pull on the leash while out for a walk. "There's a line of thinking that the dog is your scout. He sees himself as a member of the pack, and he wants to make sure everything is cool before you get there," Brent says.

 “I can sense when you’re in a bad mood.” 

Whether it was a stressful day at work or a fight with your significant other, your dog will pick up on how you feel—and feel it, too. "It goes without saying, when you're stressed, they're more stressed; when you're happier, they're happy. They match up moods with you better than a spouse or a partner," says Marty Becker, DVM, pet expert at Vetstreet.com. "They sit there and study you.” This relationship works the other way, too: If you want to make your pooch relax, you know just where to scratch; if you want to be more playful, you know how to pet him. "You can, like a gas pedal, change that dynamic with your dog," Dr. Becker says.

 “I need more exercise!” 

If she's eliminating on the floor, chewing the furniture or running circles around the coffee table, your dog is probably trying to tell you she needs more activity in her life. "That's where we see a lot of behavioral issues with dogs in households," Brent says. This is particularly true for active breeds, such as herding or hunting dogs. "The Dalmatian was trained to be a hunting dog. You can't take an animal that's used to running eight miles a day, put it in an apartment, and expect it to be OK. If your dog's destroying stuff, he's saying, 'I'm bored, you need to give me something to do.'" While exercise is important—dogs should receive 45 to 60 minutes of physical exercise and 15 minutes of behavioral training per day—Dr. Becker says you can also play mental games to keep your pooch entertained. Make her play search-and-seek games for her food or even use food puzzles that she has to solve before her meal is dispensed.

“I'm scared you won't come back.” 

While most dogs are going to bark for a few minutes when you leave the house—just to let you know you're forgetting someone—some dogs have a much more serious reaction. "If you watch a video of a dog with separation anxiety, it'll tear your heart out. It's like the kid lost at the mall without his parents," Dr. Becker says. "They freak out. They think you're not coming back. They often attack the area where you leave; they'll tear up the doorframe, they're destructive. If you come home and they’ve had diarrhea or [are excessively] panting, their cortisol levels are high, and you have to take action." Dr. Becker recommends speaking with a dog behaviorist to receive a training program and possibly a canine antidepressant. To help assuage the trauma associated with your departure, you can try these training intervals: Put your coat on, grab your keys and go stand outside for 30 seconds. Come back in, and then go out for one minute, then five, and build from there. It’s also helpful to give your dog a treat before you leave, or feed him using an interactive food puzzle to keep him distracted.

“I can tell when you’re not feeling well.” 

It’s a hard phenomenon to explain, but many dogs seem to be able to detect illness in their owners. And new evidence has found that some dogs can actually detect a wide array of serious conditions, including cancer, as well as seizures related to epilepsy. "We know that there's a chemical marker that a few dogs are detecting, just like they can detect bed bugs, mold, peanuts, drugs and explosives," Dr. Becker says. "They can smell the ketones on a diabetic's breath when their sugar is low. For epileptics [about to have a seizure], they can alert their owner so they can get out of harm's way." Some canines are even more naturally empathetic to humans. Often, these dogs become therapy dogs, providing affection to those in need, while also sensing—and being able to react to—health problems. "Some people just need a dog to lay still with them; others need a reason to get out of the bed. It's the weirdest thing how therapy dogs know when to [move] close or far away," says Dr. Becker.

“Pay attention when I’m not myself.” 

It's important to pay attention to your pooch’s behavior because if something seems amiss, he’s probably not feeling well. "You want to catch things in the earliest period to prevent unnecessary pain or worse," says Dr. Becker. "I call it 'Dog-ter Mom,' because 80% of caregivers for pets are women. You just need to pay attention to your intuition." That means noticing behavior that's out of the norm: he's not as playful as usual, he’s acting aggressively, he has trouble getting up or isn’t eating properly. "You want to pay particular attention to eating habits,” Dr. Becker says. “Food is their currency. If he isn't eating enough or is eating too much, if he's drinking more water or needs to eliminate more, or if you have a dog that's losing weight, then something's wrong.”

 “I need a routine, but with a little variety.” 

They say that a dog's mental capacity is that of a toddler; and just like a toddler, dogs thrive on routine. "Knowing what to expect is really, really important, otherwise they don't know how to react," Brent says. A general routine is best, but that doesn’t mean you have to do everything at the same time each day. In fact, varying the time will actually help in the long run, says Dr. Becker. Otherwise, your dog will start running the show. “You don't want them to force how the clock works,” he says. If they do, it’s likely that your dog will “insist on his 5 a.m. feeding on a Sunday, when you want to sleep until 8 a.m. Vary it up. If you control their food, you control them—in a good way." 

“Be clear when I’m doing something wrong.” 

Correcting your dog is important—and how you do it is key. Avoid explaining your dog’s behavior to him, or using a calm voice. Take a firm (not mean) tone and be direct. "Dogs respond to tone. If you say, 'No!' while a bad action is happening, you're going to get a much better response than if you say it in a gentle voice or wait to say it afterwards," Brent says. To ensure results, it has to be said in the moment of action, and in the same way every time. “If you want to train your dog to be calm when he sees another dog, you can't wait until that dog has passed to give him a treat for being good. You can't wait until you get home,” Brent says. “That says putting down the leash means a treat, instead of the action [you're trying to reinforce]." 

 “I'm not a human.” 

There’s no doubt your dog is part of the family—but that doesn’t mean she should be treated like a person. "Thinking your dog has the motivation of a person is the number one problem I see," says Gina Spadafori, pet columnist and executive editor of the PetConnection.com. Whether your dog eliminates in the house or chews up the remote, the cause has nothing to do with revenge. "It's not an emotional or rational response. It’s either a lack of training, illness or a stress reaction that can be triggered by a change in the house," Spadafori says. So if your dog is acting out, start by trying to find the root cause. Is she sick, improperly trained or has there been a recent change in routine? Once you locate the cause, understanding and correcting her behavior will be much easier.

 Taken from Shine

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Shhh... let sleeping dogs lie: The tiny puppies catching 40 winks

After a busy day spent trying to catch their own tail, the cat next door or the postman, sometimes there's nothing else a puppy wants to catch but 40 winks.

And as these pictures show, it really is a good thing to let sleeping dogs die.

Sleeping dogs lie: This cute pup fell asleep in a wicker basket.

Falling asleep on the job: Tired from making too many calls, this dog passed out on top of a mobile telephone
Every dog has its daydream: A miniature sofa provided the perfect napping space for this little pup

Perhaps awaiting a call on the dog and bone, a white-furred fellow leans on its owner's mobile for a snooze.

Sleeping beauty: This dog can only nod off when he's cuddling up to his favourite teddy bear.
Eyes wide shut: Balancing between his owner's legs, this dog shades himself from the light to get his good 40 winks

Another lies flat on its back with paws covering its eyes as if to shut out the light.

And yet another of the snaps on U.S. website Uphaa, which collects unusual photographs, shows a puppy enjoying a snooze on a miniature sofa, while there is even a whole litter sleeping in a conga line.

We all sleep together: This whole litter lie in a conga line grabbing some well earned rest after a busy day of chasing each other

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Are hypoallergenic dogs just a myth?

Myth:  Bo Obama, The White House Dog, is hypoallergenic. 

When the Obamas brought the Portuguese Water dog into their family fold in 2009, his so-called "hypoallergenic" breed was a selling point for allergy-prone first daughter Malia. Now Bo may be riding on his cuteness, rather than his breed's allergy-friendly label.
Reality: "Hypoallergenic" dogs may not be allergy-proof.

A new study published in the American Journal of Rhinology and Allergy suggests that "hypoallergenic" dog breeds don't make a difference for people with dog allergies. 

“We found no scientific basis to the claim hypoallergenic dogs have less allergen,” says Christine Cole Johnson, Ph.D., MPH, chair of Henry Ford’s Department of Public Health Sciences and senior author of the study in a statement to press. “The idea that you can buy a certain breed of dog and think it will cause less allergy problems for a person already dog-allergic is not borne out by our study.”

In what’s believed to be the first study of its kind, Henry Ford Hospital researchers collected dust samples from 173 homes with a variety of 60 different dog breeds. Eleven of those breeds fell into the “hypoallergenic” category as specified by breeders. But when researchers analyzed their allergen samples, they found no real statistical difference between the dog breeds. While the study only looked at one type of major dog allergen, and the study faced variables in terms of time spent with each animal, the research suggests the "hypoallergenic dog" may just be another Bigfoot. 


Myth: Dogs who shed more are more likely to cause allergies.
Reality: Pet fur isn't necessarily linked to pet allergens.

Several breeds, including the
Obamas’ Portuguese Water Dog, Schnauzers and Poodles, have been given the hypoallergenic stamp because they shed less. Christina Duffney-Carey, spokesperson for American Kennel Club, tells the New York Times, “there are many breeds with consistent and predictable coats that we suggest for allergy sufferers. These breeds have nonshedding coats, which produce less dander.”

But fur isn’t necessarily the purveyor of pet allergens. This new study conducted by Henry Ford Hospital's team of researchers looked specifically at the allergen Can F1. 
 

“Can F1, one of the major dog allergens, is found in dogs’ saliva," says Ganesa Wegienka and epidemiologist and one of the co-authors of the study.  “I think that people think that allergies have to do with a dog’s coat or dander, but I’m not sure how [saliva] relates to shedding and dander."

In fact, a dog's saliva can trigger many of the major symptoms that pet allergy sufferers face, like itchy, watery eyes, stuffy noses, hives or even exacerbation in asthma sufferers.


Myth: All pet-related allergies are caused by pet allergens.
Reality: It's not always your pet's fault.


Sometimes an allergic reaction to other environmental factors causes a deceptively pet-provoked attack. "Say for example, your child is allergic to peanuts, and they’re visiting with neighbor's dog who just had a peanut biscuit, contact with the dog's saliva could trigger an attack,"  explains Wegienka. "Another example is if the dog is out running in the grass and you have grass allergies it could be the environmental contaminate on the fur, not actually an allergic reaction to a pet allergen.” Wegienka suggests getting tested for specific types of allergies to identify the symptom triggers, before you blame your pooch. 


Myth: People with allergies should now ditch their hypoallergenic dog.
Reality: Pet allergies are treatable. 


Wegienka acknowledges that allergies can be very serious, but they’re also manageable with the help of a board-certified allergist.  “They’ll take a history, identify the allergies, help develop a plan for managing your symptoms, or an avoidant strategy,” she says.

For many people, an allergy shot does the trick. “They may take up to 6 months to see an initial symptom change, but they do work for many people.”

Another reason to keep your pet around: They may be good for warding off allergies. Wegienka and her fellow researchers also found that infants who live with dogs and cats may be less likely to develop allergies to those pets later in life.  One theory is that early exposure builds up immunity to that type of pet. 
As for Bo Obama, Malia's best friend and possible allergy agitator, Wegienka isn't suggesting impeachment. “I'm sure they have access to the best healthcare and their children have seen board-certified allergists," says Wegienka. "Dogs are wonderful and I hope the family enjoys him.”