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This is where we display helpful information & breed profiles, and showcase pets.

Breed profiles: Jack Russel Terriers and Tonkinese Cats

Posted by Annette Filecci
Annette Filecci
Hi, my name is Annette Filecci. I am a Miami native, one of the few! I have been pet-sitting in the Hollywood ...
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on Sunday, 23 December 2012
in Lucky Dogs Breed Profiles

Jack Russell Terrier

Spero, Lucky Dogs Jack RussellThe Jack Russell is an energetic breed of small terrier that was originally bred for fox hunting; to have high stamina for the hunt, as well as the courage to root out foxes that had retreated to their dens. As such these dogs need exercise and stimulation to avoid mood and behavioral problems associated with restlessness and boredom. White-bodied and smooth with a rough or "broken" coat; the reason they are white is because hunters needed to be able to tell their dogs from the prey.

Spero, Lucky Dogs Jack Russells These hardy dogs have not changed much in the past two centuries, and their average lifespan averages 13-16 years. They are instinctively a working dog, and while bred to chase red foxes, they are also used to eliminate numerous ground-dwelling prey such as groundhog, badger, or grey fox. The Jack Russell originated with dogs that were bred and used by Reverend John Russell in the early 1800's and is related to the Fox terrier as well as the now-extinct English White terrier. These dogs have a tempered aggressiveness to allow pursuit and capture of foxes without harming them (which would end the chase, which was considered "unsporting") Reverend Russell reportedly prided himself on the fact that his terriers never tasted blood.

Spero, Lucky Dogs Jack RussellsAfter World War II, there was less need for hunting dogs, so the role of Jack Russells changed. Now they are more commonly chosen as family and companion animals. Cross breeding with Welsh corgis, Chihuahuas and other smaller breeds of terrier has produced breeds known as Puddin' Dogs and Shortie Jacks. Jack Russells are a very popular choice for movies and other types of show, as they are very intelligent, athletic, fearless, and vocal. Nipper was a Jack Russsell who was the inspiration for the painting "Dog looking at and listening to a Phonograph", which was later renamed to "His Master's Voice", and is still in use today as a logo. Another Jack Russell, named Bothy, visited both the North and South Poles; and Chalky was a star on TV in the UK. "Eddie" on the US TV show Frasier was played by two dogs; a father and son named Moose and Enzo, who also played "Skip" in a movie called "My Dog Skip". Wishbone was the subject of a popular children's show, and there are numerous others.

Because of their high energy and drive, Jack Russells are ideal for numerous dog sports; excelling at flyball or agility. However, they can be stubborn at times and even aggressive towards other animals and humans if not properly socialized, so obedience training is highly recommended. They really do have an incredible amount of energy for their size, which can sometimes lead to trouble with larger animals. Apparently tireless, they will often still be energetic after you are worn out. If they are well-socialized, they can be good with children, but they will never tolerate abuse even if it is accidental. Overall, the Jack Russell is a great family pet, and a teriffic companion for those who enjoy an active lifestyle.

Tonkinese cat

Spero, Lucky Dogs TonkineseTonkinese are medium-sized cats which weigh 6-20 lbs or occasionally more. They have distinctive "points" similar to the Siamese and Birman cat breeds: fur markings on the ears, face, back, tail, and paws. Busy, fun, and sometimes talkative; these cats have friendly, outgoing personalities. Commonly known as ‘Tonks’ They have distinctive (usually dark) oval-shaped paws, and a stocky muscular build to their bodies, wedge-shaped heads, and large ears which are set towards the outside of their head. Because they are so muscular, they are sometimes heavier than they appear to be. This breed of cat is an excellent combination of qualities from both the Burmese and the Siamese cats. Tonkinese share attributes from both the Burmese and Siamese including behaviours, so they tend to vocalize like the Siamese are well-nown for doing.

Some claim that the appearance of this breed is more closely resembles the original appearance of Siamese cats, before breeders developed today's exaggerated triangular head and very leggy body. The name Tonkinese has been slightly altered since the breed was first established in Canada. At that time it was actually spelled "Tonkanese," which referenced an island in the musical "South Pacific". Tonkinese have four coat colors and a variety of patterns. The three most common patterns are mink, solid and pointed. Solid is a Burmese coat pattern, and pointed is a Siamese pattern; but Mink is a unique Tonkinese pattern, with shaded "points" like the Siamese, and the body in a shade which tends to compliment the point colour. The most common colors are: platinum, champagne, blue, and natural. Solid Tonkinese cats will usually have gold or blue-green eyes, while cats with the pointed pattern are blue-eyed, and mink cats even have a touch of aquamarine.

Highly intelligent, curious, and great with people, children and other pets; the Tonkinese is unusual in that they will beg for attention and cuddling, reciprocting with loving affection. Enthusiasically playful although not hyperactive, they love toys; including human fingers or the tails of other pets, among other things! Obviously then, they can be mischievous if you let them become too bored or lonely. You can avoid that by providing numerous interesting toys and a cat tree; but if you are not home much, a good solution is to have another Asian cat (Tonkinese, Oriental, Burmese, Siamese, or Snowshoe) to provide companionship and keep them busy. Another unusual attribute is that they will sometimes play "fetch" with you!

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Breed Profile: The Daschund

Posted by Annette Filecci
Annette Filecci
Hi, my name is Annette Filecci. I am a Miami native, one of the few! I have been pet-sitting in the Hollywood ...
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on Thursday, 15 November 2012
in Lucky Dogs Breed Profiles

The daschund (German for “badger dog”) is by far one of the most adorable dogs alive, and the AKC consistently lists them among the top ten dog breeds. With their extremely short legs and long bodies, you’d never guess that they were part of the hound family! Developed as hunting dogs to enter the underground burrows of various critters, the standard size daschund was bred to catch larger animals such as badgers while the miniature was bred to go after rabbits primarily, although they have been utilized in the western United States to catch prairie dogs.

Typically long-bodied and muscular, the daschund sports short stubby legs with rather large paws for digging. Their skin is somewhat loose; so it won’t get torn on rough edges in small, tight spaces, as the dog digs for prey. They tend to dig underneath an animal’s burrow so as to catch them by surprise. These tenacious canines have been known to dig a tunnel ten feet long to catch their prey, and digging for three days straight is not unusual when they are excited and eager to perform.

There are three types of daschund, although only two are recognized in the US and UK. Kennel clubs use varying measures to determine type; including weight, height, and chest circumference.
1.   Standard – 16-32 lbs.
2.   Miniature – 12 lbs. or less
3.   Kaninchen (German for “Rabbit Dog”) – 8-11 lbs.

There are three coat varieties for daschunds.
1.   Smooth coat (short hair)
2.   Long hair
3.  Wire hair (least common in US and most common in Germany, most recent coat variety to be acknowledged.



The colors of daschund coats are black, chocolate, red, and silver; red being the most common. The patterns vary, and these are the types:
1.    Single-colored
2.    Single-colored with spots (also known as dappled or merle)
3.    Single-colored with tan points plus any pattern
4.    Piebald

Listed as clever, lively, and courageous; daschunds are playful but can be stubborn (terrier behavior!) and love to chase prey or a tennis ball for hours on end. Although very loyal, they may be difficult to housebreak and train; as well as aggressive toward other dogs as well as strangers – especially children. They also may or may not bark a lot, and their bark can be quite loud and demanding. They prefer not to be alone, so they will whine if they are confined without a companion; and some may show separation anxiety by chewing up household objects including your shoes! They may also “burrow” in blankets and other unusual places when they are tired or bored.


If you live in an apartment or urban environment, daschunds are small and easy to care for relatively speaking. They do not have the space requirements of a larger dog; and many famous people, including two U.S. Presidents have been daschund lovers. Here are some of them:
•    Grover Cleveland
•    John F. Kennedy (actually this dog never made it to the White House)
•    William Randolph Hearst
•    E.B. White
•    Pablo Picasso
•    Andy Warhol

If you are considering a daschund, remember that they can be aggressive with children and strangers, so be prepared to spend considerable time socializing and training your dog. But with the right attention, this dog will be a terrific companion!

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Breed profiles: Samoyed Dogs and Persian Cats

Posted by Annette Filecci
Annette Filecci
Hi, my name is Annette Filecci. I am a Miami native, one of the few! I have been pet-sitting in the Hollywood ...
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on Thursday, 30 August 2012
in Lucky Dogs Breed Profiles


The SamoyedDrawing its name from the nomadic Samoyed people, who came from central Asia to northwestern Siberia; and who used hardy and powerful Spitz dogs for herding as well as protecting the reindeer from Arctic predators, these dogs were treated like family members. The nomads were dependent upon reindeer for their food, and had to move constantly with the foraging herd. The dogs lived in the nomads’ tents to keep the children warm at night. Samoyeds were useful, too, for hauling sleds and boats; and even for hunting bears.

The Samoyed dog breed began to arrive in England sometime in the late 1800s. Queen Alexandra was presented with one of these early imports as a gift, and she heartily began to promote the Samoyed. There are numerous modern-day pedigrees that can be traced back to this dog.

The Samoyed was introduced to the United States in 1906, when the Grand Duke Nicholas of Russia gave it as a gift. At that time, the breed had begun to gain notoriety for its ability to outperform other sled dogs; so much so that in the early 20th century, Samoyed dogs were included in a good number of sled teams undertaking expeditions to the South Pole and Antarctica.

Compact, muscular, and strong; the Samoyed bears a resemblance to Spitz dogs with a fantastic combination of strength, dignity, agility, and grace. These dogs sport a weather-resistant, heavy, double coat comprised of a soft, thick undercoat with a straight outer coat; which glows all silvery like sunkissed snow.

If you are looking for a dog which bonds very closely with its family, the Samoyed is an excellent choice. They tend to be friendly with other pets and strangers. A high-energy dog, Samoyeds can be calm indoors – to a point; as long as you challenge their mischievous, clever minds with daily mental and physical workouts. Otherwise you may find them barking and digging up holes when bored.

The Samoyed typically responds well to training and is, overall, eager to please; but he may be stubborn and want to exert some independence at times. Mild-mannered and playful, a Samoyed makes the perfect companion for active people of all ages who are willing to keep their best friend busy.

Samoyeds have been bred specifically for cold weather, herding, and pulling. Even though they can live outside in cold and temperate climates, who wouldn’t prefer to stay in the house, sharing human companionship? Active and lively, this breed absolutely must have daily exercise; whether it is a jog, long walk or a spirited game. Also, his thick coat must be combed and brushed two or three times each week – daily during the shedding season.

On average the Samoyed has a lifespan of 10 to 12 years. In choosing a well-bred dog, the primary issues to watch out for in ancestors are: progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) and diabetes. Minor health issues which may also affect this breed include hypothyroidism, gastric torsion, and cataract. Canine hip dysplasia (CHD) is the most significant health concern .

The "smile" of a Samoyed is formed by a slight upturning at the corners of his mouth. We love Samoyeds, which are hardy working dogs long bred for herding, pulling sleds, and showing. Like many herding breeds, a Samoyed may even instinctively “herd” you, your children and/or other pets!


Persian CatThe Persian was a popular show breed by 1871, when the first modern cat show was kicked off at the Crystal Palace in London, and it was first registered with the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA) in that same year, which is the year in which the association began keeping records. Her ancestors were first reported in Europe as far back as the 1500s; but were most likely taken there by Roman and Phoenician caravans from Persia and Turkey, according to available documentation.

Persian cats were brought to Italy in the 1600s by an Italian traveler, Pietro della Valle. His manuscript, Viaggi di Pietro della Valle, described the Persian as “a gray cat with long, silky hair”. Nicholas-Claude Fabri de Peiresc, an astronomer imported still more Persian cats from Turkey into France, and later they came to Britain with other travelers. In the early 1900s Blue Persians were all the rage, because Queen Victoria had two of them. Persians are large to medium-sized cats, with a sweet expression on their faces. Well balanced, they have large, round heads, small ears, and relatively short tails. Originally bred with a short muzzle, over time in North America most have a “flat” face. As a result they can fall victim to an unfortunate array of health problems; especially regarding sinuses and breathing. This includes accumulate of dust and debris inside their nostrils, which obviously would make it difficult to breathe.

Their famed long, silky coat actually shimmers; and although the most popular color for Persians is the solid silver variety, there are actually in excess of 80 colors to choose from. These include but are not limited to: black, blue, cream, and smoke.

Persians are highly intelligent and they love to play, but are typically not as curious as other cats. They can also be incredibly still for long stretches. So much so you have to look closely to see if they’re breathing! If you like to relax with a feline pal, this is an excellent kitty to have. An unobtrusive sort, you won’t be likely to have this cat sitting on your hands at the laptop or creeping in between you and your favorite book, but they are happy to receive your affection when you’re free to offer it.

When it comes to maintenance, this is not an easy pet to consider. They require daily grooming for their coats to stay silky smooth and matt-free! Some people like to trim them – especially the rear end, which can get “gooked up” in the litterbox.

Persians were not introduced to North America until the 1800s, at which time they quickly became quite popular. No matter what color they are, you can’t go wrong with such a sweet and friendly cat.

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The Afghan Hound

Posted by Annette Filecci
Annette Filecci
Hi, my name is Annette Filecci. I am a Miami native, one of the few! I have been pet-sitting in the Hollywood ...
User is currently offline
on Wednesday, 27 April 2011
in Lucky Dogs Breed Profiles
There is nothing quite as elegant as the delicate and graceful bearing of an Afghan Hound. We begin this series of breed profiles with the aristocratic Afghan because we enjoy their regal bearing and playful, sometimes silly temperament. Two of our Lucky Dogs, Jackpot & Shakespeare are excellent examples of the breed.

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