Weekly News Roundup 2/16–2/22


Forget Westminster—Labrador mix is best of (mixed) breed in first rescue dog show

After 142 years of purebred winners at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, rescue dogs finally got a chance to strut their stuff at the first American Rescue Dog Show, which aired February 19on the Hallmark Channel. The event featured mostly mixed-breed dogs, and all were adopted from shelters. Jackie, an 11-year-old Labrador mix took the top prize. It’s quite a comeback for Jackie, who’d been surrendered to a shelter a year ago and was scheduled to be euthanized when Debbie Bloom fell in love with her and decided to adopt.

Nebraska may ban sale of animals from breeders in pet stores  

Nebraska is considering a bill that would prohibit retail stores from selling a dog or cat unless the animal was obtained from an animal control facility, animal shelter, or animal rescue. It’s the latest in a growing movement to crack down on puppy and kitten mills that put profits over animal wellbeing. The downside? Opponents of the bill claim that people and organizations that engage in the rescue of shelter animals for profit, a practice known as “retail rescue,” often move animals from state to state, spreading diseases and parasites from their normal habitats to distant locations.

The Flintstones had it wrong: Cavemen kept dogs as pets

Forget Dino; it turns out cavemen didn’t keep clumsy dinosaurs as pets. Archaeologists have long thought that cavemen who owned dogs used them as working animals to help with hunting, guarding the cave, and so on. But according to a new study, cavemen likely thought of their dogs as pets, too, and developed an emotional attachment to the animals. How do researchers know? When they looked at the dental records of prehistoric dog skeletons, they discovered that some had been sick for a while before they died. And the only way for the dogs to have survived as long as they did after getting sick was if they were getting taken care of by a human.

Land Rover leads the pack in Year of the Dog–related marketing tie-ins

Land Rover is celebrating the Year of the Dog—and the Year of Marketing to Dog Owners—with a new set of “Pet Packs” for its vehicles. The pet pack is a two-piece kit that includes both a full-height partition for the cargo area as well as your choice of a rubber mat or a liner tray to keep the car’s upscale leather appointments safe from dogs who get a little too exuberant mucking it up off road. And of course, you’re paying for the Land Rover name: Pet Packs start at around $660. Because a ratty, old blanket just doesn’t have the same cachet.

NEWStat Legislation & regulation Interesting/unusual