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Pit Bull Puppy Kicked Out Of PetSmart Playdate After He Was Invited
When Jennifer Miller received an email from PetSmart regarding an event called puppy’s first playdate, an in-store social for puppies, she was excited to take her four-month-old pup, Dale, to socialize him.
But when she arrived at the PetSmart off Virginia Beach Blvd. and Rosemont Road in Virginia Beach, she ran into an unexpected roadblock.
“Dale saw all those friends to play with and started wiggling his butt a mile a minute,” Miller wrote.
But Dale did not get to play with the other puppies or enter the event at all.
A PetSmart employee who was about to register Dave told Miller that she was unsure if he could attend because he looks like a Pit Bull. After speaking with the manager, she came back to tell Miller “I’m sorry he can’t stay, he’s definitely a Pit Bull.”
Miller was devastated that her puppy would not be able to play with the other pups there.
“Dale was just looking into the play room with all those puppies that were staring back at him waiting for him to come play,” Miller wrote. “My heart shattered into a million pieces as I had to turn around and walk out.”
Miller was also furious that he was denied just because of his breed.
“These dogs are not dangerous. They’re not aggressive. It’s all about how you raise them,” Miller told 10 On Your Side. “I just don’t know what could’ve happened that was so bad that they could just turn away a whole entire breed of dog.”
According to PetSmart’s corporate policy, Pit Bulls and other bully breeds are welcome in their stores, grooming salons, training areas and PetsHotels, but are banned from off-leash, group play activities within their Doggie Day Camp “for the safety of their associates and other pets.”
“We cannot accept dogs of the ‘bully breed’ classification or wolves/wolf hybrids including American Pit Bull Terriers, Miniature Bull Terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, American Bull Dogs, Bull Terriers or mixed breeds that have the appearance or characteristics of one of these breeds,” PetSmart wrote on their website.
“This policy reflects careful consultation with our veterinarian staff and safety experts as well as our deep knowledge and experience interacting with these pets in a wide variety of settings. It also reflects our desire to provide a fun, safe experience for our pets, customers and associates,” a PetSmart representative told 10 On Your Side.
But while PetSmart denies Pit Bulls and bully breeds from their group activities, Petco says they do not discriminate and accept every breed of dog.
Jasmine Marzini contacted PetSmart, asking if Pit Bull breeds were allowed, and received the same response Miller did.
Then she contacted Petco, asking them the same thing, in which they replied: “We welcome all breeds inside our stores and events. This includes Pit Bulls and Staffordshire Terriers, Doberman Pinschers, Rottweilers, Chows, Great Danes, Presa Canarios, Akitas, Alaskan Malamutes, German Shepherds, Huskies, mutts of all types, and the list goes on.”
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Reverse Sneezing In Dogs – What to do…
Does this sound familiar? Your dog suddenly starts making loud snorting sounds—over and over again, in quick succession. Do you start wondering, did they swallow something they shouldn’t have? Can they breathe?! Chances are, you’re experiencing the infamous “reverse sneeze.” Veterinarians often see dogs whose owners rushed them in for an emergency appointment after finding them standing with their elbows apart, head pulled back, and eyes bulging as they snort or gasp repeatedly. Yet for the vast majority of these dogs, a vet visit was unnecessary.
Reverse sneezing looks and sounds scary the first time you encounter it. However, it’s a fairly common and harmless respiratory event for dogs.
Read on to learn how to identify reverse sneezing, what causes it, and how to tell the difference between a harmless reverse sneeze and something else.
What is reverse sneezing?
A reverse sneeze is pretty much what it sounds like: a sneeze that happens in reverse! The above video is a good example of what it looks and sounds like.
In a regular sneeze, air is rapidly pushed out through the nose. In a reverse sneeze, air is rapidly, and noisily, pulled in through the nose. It occurs in spasms lasting anywhere from a few seconds up to a minute and sounds like snorting, snuffling, and even gagging. See the above video for an example.
Because of the sounds their dogs make while reverse sneezing, many people mistakenly think their dog is choking. However, a reverse sneeze is almost as normal and harmless as a regular sneeze.
There’s no single cause for a reverse sneeze. Like regular sneezing, it’s often triggered by an irritation or inflammation in the nose, throat, or sinuses. It often occurs when dogs wake up from a nap, or after eating, when their breathing pattern may have rapidly changed. It’s also caused by irritants in the airway—anything from dust to an inhaled hair!
Some dogs experience more frequent reverse sneezing in springtime when the air is full of pollen and other allergens. Others reverse sneeze more in the winter, when sudden temperature changes between outdoors and indoors cause the nasal passages to contract.
Another common cause of reverse sneezing is pressure on the throat and neck. A too-tight collar, or straining against the leash, can irritate the throat and lead to a reverse sneeze. That’s just one more reason to consider a harness for your dog.
Finally, some dogs reverse sneeze after exercise, or when they’re overexcited. This is particularly common among brachycephalic, or short-nosed, breeds like pugs and bulldogs. When they get worked up, they may inhale their elongated soft palates into the throat, triggering an episode of reverse sneezing.
Reverse sneezing is super-common, and it won’t hurt your dog. However, some dogs become anxious during a reverse sneezing episode, and a lengthy episode may be uncomfortable.
You can help your dog recover from a reverse sneezing episode by remaining calm yourself. If you get anxious, your dog’s anxiety will increase, too. So, stay calm, and show your dog there’s nothing to panic about.
If your dog is experiencing a particularly long episode of reverse sneezing, you may be able to ease or end the episode by:
Gently massaging your dog’s throat
Briefly covering their nostrils, which will cause them to swallow and potentially stop sneezing
Depressing their tongue with your hand to help open airways
Some vets suggest gently blowing in your dog’s face
In the vast majority of cases, there’s no need to intervene. Reverse sneezing doesn’t last long, and your dog will be perfectly normal after it stops.
When you should go to the vet
As mentioned, reverse sneezing rarely requires veterinary treatment. As soon as the sneezing episode stops, the situation is resolved. However, if episodes increase in frequency or duration, you should call the vet just in case. You should also seek treatment if your dog’s reverse sneezing is accompanied by other respiratory symptoms or if they have any unusual discharge from their nose.Occasionally, chronic reverse sneezing can be a symptom of more serious issues. These include nasal mites, foreign objects in the airway, respiratory infections, and tracheal collapse. If you’re concerned about the intensity of your dog’s reverse sneezing, take a video to show the vet. They’ll be able to determine potential causes.Most dogs experience episodes of reverse sneezing at some point in their lives. For the vast majority of dogs, it’s a common, temporary, harmless reaction with no lasting aftereffects. Of course, it still sounds unsettling to our human ears! But now that you know what reverse sneezing is, you’ll be less likely to make an unnecessary vet visit.