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A first for Dogue de Bordeaux; Poodle reaches 100 Best in Shows

Two dogs with local connections reached milestones this past weekend in the dog-show world, according to national blogger Billy Wheeler.

GCH CH Evergreen’s Rub My Belly at Rising Star, a Dogue de Bordeaux, won the breed’s first Best in Show on Sunday at the Tacoma Kennel Club show in Puyallup. Buddha’s breeders are Angie and Scott Reed, of Puyallup. He is owned by Jennifer Roberts and Lauren Parker and handler Michael Brantley.

GCH CH Brighton Lakeridge Encore, a white standard poodle named Ally who is shown by Woodinville handler Tim Brazier, logged her 100th Best in Show on Sunday at the Flagstaff Kennel Club show in Arizona. She reached the century mark by winning both Saturday’s and Sunday’s top prizes. She is owned by Toni and Martin Sosnoff, of New York, and was bred by L’Dyne Wicker Brennan, of Florida, and Debra Ferguson Jones, of Renton.

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$1.5 million to study canine cancer

The AKC Canine Health Foundation and the Golden Retriever Foundation have jointly awarded grants totaling $1.5 million to two projects that will research how lymphoma and hemangiosarcoma get started and spread in golden retrievers. Although the projects will focus on a specific breed, researchers believe the information will help them better understand how cancer begins and spreads and will be applicable across all breeds of dogs. For more information, read here.

Father’s Day special at Humane Society

For one day only — Sunday — all fathers get half off the normal adoption fee for any dog 1 year and up — and the fee for adult cats is 100 percent waived for the month of June.

To learn more and view adoptable pets, visit

WSU study: Dogs help improve moods of teens in treatment

Lindsay Ellsworth, a doctoral candidate in animal sciences at Washington State University in Pullman, is prescribing a new, mood-boosting therapy for teenagers in drug and alcohol treatment: shelter dogs.

One day a week, about four dogs from the Spokane Humane Society take a field trip to Excelsior Youth Center, where they are met by a group of teenage boys who can help brush, feed and play with the dogs. Ellsworth’s study is the first of its kind to experimentally demonstrate how dog-interaction activities improve mood among teenagers living in residential treatment centers. Read more here.

$53.3 billion spent on pets last year

DAYTON, Ohio — U.S. households spend more each year on their pets than they do on alcohol, furniture, landline phone service or men’s and boys’ clothing, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data collected by the Census Bureau.

Pet ownership is at a record high nationwide, and the overwhelming majority of U.S. households now own pets, survey data show.

Americans love to treat their estimated 218 million furry, scaly, feathered and hoofed companions: Pet owners spent a record $53.3 billion on their critters last year.

Even during the economic downturn, spending on pet food remained stable, when most Americans cut back on dining out.

“That was a surprise to me, because anecdotally, I expected people to switch to generic 80-pound drums of dog food at Costco,” said Steve Henderson, with the Consumer Expenditure Survey division of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “When people are faced with choices about where to spend their money, they take care of their pets.”

American households on average spent $502 on their pets in 2011, up from $480 in 2010, according to the Consumer Expenditure Survey. Spending on pets declined in 2009 and 2010 after peaking at $570 in 2008.

In 2011, households on average spent more on pets than they spent on utilities ($501), prescription and nonprescription drugs ($489), alcohol ($456), men’s and boys’ clothing ($404), landline telephone service ($381), nonalcoholic beverages ($361) and furniture ($358), survey data show.

Households also spent about $183 on pet food in 2011, more than residents spent on cereal ($175), chicken ($124), bread ($107), candy ($87) and reading materials, the survey data show.

Seattle Times staff and news services

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