February 29th, 2012
Bernd Brunner on the long-standing, unstable truce between Istanbul's human population and the city's one hundred thousand stray dogs:
Although dogs formed part of a romantic cityscape, caricatures from the Ottoman period depict them as threats to be stopped, along with cholera, crime, and women in European clothing. Again and again, attempts were made to catch them and remove them from the city. In the late 19th century, Sultan Abdülaziz decreed that the dogs should be rounded up and deported to Hayirsiz, an island of barren, steep cliffs in the Marmara Sea. Sivriada, a tiny island to which Byzantine rulers once banned criminals, made headlines in 1911 when the governor of Istanbul released tens of thousands of dogs there. A yellowed postcard shows hundreds of dogs on the beach; their voices could be heard even at great distances. However, an earthquake that occurred shortly thereafter was taken as a sign of God's displeasure, and the dogs were brought back.
Interesting to contrast this story with one I linked to a couple of years ago about Moscow's stray dogs.
August 17th, 2011
Photographs of dogs shaking their heads by Carli Davidson. Completely adorable.
May 6th, 2011
Do you know what a "mercy dog" was? I didn't:
[In World War I...] These dogs walked among the troops on a battlefield, after the fighting had simmered down, carrying saddlebags of first-aid supplies. Wounded soldiers could call the dogs over and then help themselves whatever they needed. Those who were more gravely wounded could call the dogs over so they could embrace them and have their company while they died.
January 23rd, 2010
A fascinating article on the lives of Moscow's stray dogs:
Watching them over time, I realised that, despite some variation in colour – some were black, others yellowish white or russet – they all shared a certain look. They were medium-sized with thick fur, wedge-shaped heads and almond eyes. Their tails were long and their ears erect.
They also acted differently. Every so often, you would see one waiting on a metro platform. When the train pulled up, the dog would step in, scramble up to lie on a seat or sit on the floor if the carriage was crowded, and then exit a few stops later. There is even a website dedicated to the metro stray (www.metrodog.ru) on which passengers post photos and video clips taken with their mobile phones, documenting the savviest of the pack using the public transport system like any other Muscovite.
[Via The Browser]
September 14th, 2009
The biter bit.
It's the surprised expression on the dog's face that does for me every time…
May 13th, 2009
The playground pile-on from The Matrix Reloaded, reenacted by puppies!
[Via Making Light: Particles]
May 4th, 2009