| Dog TailsNews and quirky tails about dogs from all over the world.
� Pampered poodle has his own bathroom
A US dog lover bought her pampered French Poodle its own bathroom complete with a specially commissioned $795 painting.
The dog, named Pierre Deux, lives in an Indianapolis apartment with owners Ilia and James Macdonald.
His toilet lid is wrapped in aqua chiffon with a purple feather boa border and the room is decorated with flower petals and a picture of Pierre's girlfriend, Gigi
He relieves himself on disposable nappies left on the floor.
"He's my baby, so he deserves the best," she told the Indianapolis Star. "My mother jokes that she wants to come back reincarnated as Pierre. There's no better life."
The bathroom was the work of interior designer Lisa Fitzwater, she said: "It's kind of cool when you have a client who's creative and adventurous. I've done a hundred black and brown rooms. This was a lot more fun."
She commissioned artist Heather Cuthbert-Lutgring to create the painting which features a note, supposedly written by Pierre, saying he'd gone to Paris with his girlfriend but would be back by midnight.
� Knife-swallowing puppy bounces back to
A puppy has bounced back to health just days after swallowing a kitchen knife the length of his body.
Jake, a 12-week-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier cross, was taken to the vet when he began vomiting and
trying to keep his body in a straight line.
X-rays showed why the puppy was so reluctant to curl up - a seven-inch knife was running through his body, with the plastic handle at the base of his pelvis and the metal point at the top of his throat.
Jake had swallowed the Shappu 2000 knife whole, handle-first, at his home in Huyton, Merseyside, England.
Vets at the nearby People's Dispensary for Sick Animals hospital operated immediately to remove the knife and Jake was back to his playful self within days.
Senior vet Christina Symonds said: "The knife went from his oesophagus, passed behind the larynx and right through his stomach down into the bowel.
"Dogs are always swallowing strange things, from kebab sticks to corn-on-the-cobs to tape cassettes, but this was particularly unusual because it was such a large knife in a small puppy. It really did run the length of his body.
"If he had swallowed the knife blade-first, it would have caused more damage but then again he would have stopped before eating the whole thing!"
Owner John Mallett, 22, said: "When the vet told me it was a knife I was in total shock. I couldn't understand how he could fit it in.
"He's come through the operation really well and he's totally back to his old self. The PDSA did a really good job and I'm just pleased and relieved that he's OK."
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� Dog survives car injury, bullet to the
head and freezer storage
A dog in California has survived being hit by a car, being shot in the head and being stuck in a freezer for two hours - all in the one day.
Dosha was first hit by a car in Clearlake and then shot by a police officer who was trying to put the animal out of its misery.
The dog was presumed dead and taken to an Animal Control centre, where she was put in a freezer.
However, a few hours later an official went to the freezer and found Dosha alive - but cold.
Animal groups have begun raising money to pay for her care.
� Colorado postman told to leave dog at
A Colorado postman who uses his dog to pull his letter cart has been told by bosses to leave the pet at home.
Terry Trish, 50, has let golden retriever Sydney pull the cart since undergoing a hip replacement operation two years ago.
Now, Aspen's new acting postal inspector Howard Orona has told Trish to leave his canine partner at home, saying the dog violates safety regulations.
Postal spokesman Al DeSarro said: "Terry may be the best letter carrier in the world and this dog may be the best dog in the world, but we can't take isolated cases and make exceptions."
DeSarro said dogs bit 3,000 US postal carriers last year.
Trish said: "All I can really do is bring a lot of joy to people, and that's what Sydney did. You can't put a dollar value on that."
� Bid to use dogs in prostate cancer
Scientists are hoping to train dogs to sniff out signs of prostate cancer in urine samples.
A Cambridge-based research group wants to test whether dogs can distinguish between the odour of urine from men with malignant prostate tumours and other men with no malignancy.
If successful, the simple method of screening could be used on a routine basis for men, potentially saving many lives, research consultant Dr Barbara Sommerville said.
The research team, from Cambridge University and Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge, have recently submitted an application for funding for a 12-month pilot trial using German Shepherds and labradors.
Dr Sommerville, who is leading the group, said: "Initially, we are going to test them with urine from men that have definitely got malignant prostate cancer, but the next stage will be to see if they can pick up men with an enlarged prostate going into malignancy.
"We want to be able to pick up those men whose enlarged prostate is just becoming malignant."
She said prostate cancer was "crying out" for a simple method of screening because the current blood test used was not always reliable.
Many men who take the blood test are led to believe they have prostate cancer and then undergo multiple biopsies of the prostate gland, only to discover they do not have a tumour, she added.
"If we had a simple method of screening the entire population of men, say over 55, and a method which did not throw up false positives, i.e. could be relied upon, it would save a lot of men's lives, because the urgent thing is to get on to any malignant change as quickly as possible."
"If dogs can do it, we could merely screen urine samples on a routine basis."
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