Grape Ice Cream and dogs

Hi Spike here and I have an unusual story to tell.   It’s about grape ice cream, a girl and dogs.

You may be wondering why you don’t see grape ice cream or even grape sherbet around.  It all starts in 1876  when Robert Green tried to create grape ice cream. It didn’t work because grapes contain a special molecule Anthocyanin that prevents freezing.   Lots of companies tried afterward but the Anthocyanin problem proved too big a challenge.

That was until 1976 whenBen from ‘Ben and Jerry’s’ tried to make grape ice cream. Ben confessed in a People Magazine interview in 1984 that he had a huge crush on Becky (Jerry’s sister) and promised to create the flavor just for her. Knowing the history of grape ice cream, she requested it, thinking it would be impossible. Ben began to include the grape skin and juice to better see the differences between batches. It turns out that the grape skins were the key to his success in making the ice cream, but that victory took a turn for the worse.

“Becky jokingly gave her dog a lick from the cone. He liked it and took a couple of licks. Then he just gasped and dropped dead. He flipped down onto the floor and was just gone. I had no idea grapes are toxic to dogs. Specifically to the anthocyanin. Becky was devasted. I had invented a deadly dog poison, and I definitely wasn’t getting anywhere with her now.”

Ben then relayed the information to the pharmaceutical industry and in 1982 the FDA banned the ale of grape flavored ice creams or sherbets. They even banned the sale of artificial flavored grape ice cream due to pet hazards. The ban ends in 2028 and who knows if the FDA will renew that ban or not.

I’m glad he did this!  I hope this story will remind you not to feed your dog grapes and raisins.  Gotta run.  I think my master has some frosty paws out for me.

Why consider a purebred dog

The advantage of purebreds?  You get a dog with a set of characteristics that, within a range, are known. If you get a border collie, you know what the drives, coat type, etc. will be. You know you won’t get a border collie that has a wiry coat. If you get a Airedale terrier, you know you will get an intelligent dog with specific grooming and training requirements.

If you get a mixed breed, you get a guessing game.

The advantage of mixed breeds?  Since the only reputable place to get one is a shelter or rescue, then you know you have saved a life, and haven’t paid a lot for the dog.

Mix breed dogs are thought to generally have a higher immune system than their purebred counter-parts but ALL dogs can get “genetic disorders”. Any dog is only as good as its parents. If the parents, even if they are also mutts, have genetic conditions such as vWD, Hip Dysplasia, luxating patellas, etc., then their puppies have a chance of getting them as well.

Also interesting to note, purebred dogs are far less common in shelters (they are estimated to make up about 25% of dogs in shelters)

We’d love to know your thoughts on this topic.  Please share your comments on Acme Canine’s facebook or here, on Spike’s Blog.

2006 – Puppy Classes in the Kitchen

Dogs made the headlines in 2006.  A Bull Terrier, Ch Rocky Top’s Sundance Kid won  the Westminster.  Delta Airlines created a video to pay tribute to fallen soldiers and their K9 heros and researchers shared how marijuana benefits dogs.

With two years in the dog business and several hundred dogs trained Acme Canine made the decision to move to a home environment.  Laura searched for the right location and found it on Franklin Street in Lewis Center.   Here she developed a small training facility to expand Acme”s services.

With the help of friends, puppy classes were held in Laura’s kitchen and residency dogs were boarded in Laura’s family room.  A new logo was added to the business to reflect the change, but the Doggie drill team, woofie’s annual birthday party, and trick of the month continued to be a part of the Acme Canine.

As part of Acme Canine’s 10th anniversary celebration we are sharing special moments over the years.  Each issue of the Bark will feature a different Acme Canine year.

A Good Egg

Are you looking for a fun indestructible dog toy that has an Easter theme?

Look no further than the Jolly Egg by Jolly Pets. The Jolly Egg has a unique design that makes the toy a blast to play with and the construction is top-notch. It also a terrific solution for any dog that has a propensity to destroy every toy that comes along.

We have the medium sized Jolly Egg and the dogs love it.  It’s survived three dogs herding it around the play area as well as Kelsey trying to knaw on it. Downside is the noise it makes on hard floors.

The Jolly Egg can be purchased on line as well as at several local pet stores.jolly egg

Spring Tune Up for your dog

As we come out of winter, have you noticed your dog’s manners suffering seriously? You haven’t even given a command to your dog in months and now you’re wondering why he isn’t listening.   Owning a dog isn’t much fun when your dog listens poorly. The good news is that you don’t have to settle for that.

So what should any self-respecting dog owner do? Well you can work it out yourself and have some brilliant moments intermixed with periods of frustration or you can contact your dog pro to work with you on a “Spring Tune-Up”. In less than an hour your dog will be responding to you. Wonderful!!! Owning a dog can be fun again.

I highly recommend this to anyone, especially those of you who haven’t been working their dog. A one hour session with any good teaching pro is the best investment you’ll make in your dog. Just tell him or her that you want a spring tune-up, just to make sure that all is right as you begin walking, or walking more. No major overhauls, no new commands, just to get you back to the basics, where you were when winter came along and pushed you into hibernation. A good one hour session with a dog trainer costs about the same or less than a dinner out, drinks and a movie. And it will make your dog so much more enjoyable to be with, you won’t believe it.

I’ve read that only 20% of all dog owners have EVER taken a lesson from a dog training professional! That’s absurd, as goofy about dogs as we all are. Time with a dog pro is the best investment you can make in your dog. Dog training professionals have a trained eye and the tools they need to get you and your dog “right”. Whether your 2011 goals are to have a well mannered dog , stop him from consistently pulling on leash, or to achieve therapy certification, a little help from your dog training professional will get you there much more quickly and surely than all the magazines and books, videos and TV shows you could ever absorb.

Just call your dog professional and tell them you want some help. Not a complete overhaul, but a spring tune-up to get things right. And if you are serious about a truly well behaved dog, talk to your pro about a series of lessons to get you there.

One last word – all dog training professionals are not equal. Some are better communicators than others, and some will mesh with your personality style better than others. If you go to one and don’t get a good value from the experience, try another until you find one that you click with. Then stick with that one and that one only.


2015 Best Dog Toy

If you think one dog toy is as good as the next, then you’ve never participated in a focus group of dogs in action.

Despite the cold weather, Houston, Gracie and Piper had a great time chasing balls, tugging on Wubbas, and chewing on treat toys.  What more could a dog ask for!

While all the dogs had a great time with the toys, the 2015 toy test winner was a tie between the Earth Orbee and the Gnawledge Treat Bouncer.  Gracie found both interesting immediately (when a treat was inside).  Houston enjoyed playing with the Orbee on its own.

Wubbas got a three out of five PAW rating for versatility in chewing and fetch.  The dogs liked to watch it but some only gave it a sniff.

We would like to thank all of the participants for making toy test night a huge success.  We were pleased to offer owners an opportunity to “try it before you buy it” and will provide the results to the companies who donated the toys.

The Woofie Shop already has the Orbee in stock but will soon have the Gnawledge Treat Bouncer.  Stop by and check out our supply!

Have a product you’d like us to test?  Send us the product’s name and where it can be obtained and your favorite Central Ohio dog training center will do the rest!

Workshops for kids and dogs

Looking for something special to do with your children’s friends?  Interested in a unique party idea that involves dogs?  Book a canine group workshop designed just for your kids.

Acme Canine can specialize a workshop to the date, time and even the place that suits you the best.  All you need to do is have three (or more) dog owners interested in participating and the class is set.  Call (740) 548-1717 for more information.

Here’s some of our great ideas:

Kid N Dog Safety workshop

All children should be taught to respect other living beings, be they animal or human. From birth, children need to learn that some things are just not allowed and “be gentle” should be a common household command. Even if your household does not contain animals, your children should still be taught the basics. One day they will encounter a dog whether it is a neighbor’s dog or a meeting on the street with a strange dog. Students receive verbal instruction, handouts and visual demonstrations. Cost $35/dog Limit six well socialized dogs who know obedience commands.

Picnic with your pup workshop

Dogs will learn the Place Mat and Leave It commands to help prepare for your very own picnic with your dog.  Attendees will receive handouts on the commands as well as a booklet on treats and dog nutrition.  Cost $35/dog   Limit to six well socialized dogs.

Preparation for a new puppy

If a new puppy is in your future then this workshop is for you! This workshop is geared towards first time dog owners, also people who have previously owned dogs and want to get started off on the right track, as well as children who want to take part in the process of preparing for your new arrival. This is a very informative session with lots of tips, advice, and handouts. Cost $20/person…no dogs

 Dog tricks and games

There are many reasons to play games with your dog. It will strengthen your relationship. It will keep the dog from getting bored, which will keep him from things you don’t want him doing, and make him healthier. Join our certified trainer in fun games such as Funagle, Are you a Mutthead, Are you out of your mind, TicTacDog, and musical canines.

During the workshop you will have the opportunity to teach your dog various tricks, including: Shake, Wave, Crawl, Roll Over, Dance, and many more.  Teaching tricks can be fun and rewarding for your dog.  Tricks are mentally stimulating, and allow a dog to receive all kinds of praise and attention from anyone around to watch their amazing feats.  Cost $15/dog  Limit to six well socialized dogs.

Games for dogs and kids

Tug of war or dogs chasing children isn’t the way for children and dogs to play together. The staff at Acme Canine is pleased to announce the creation of a new workshop specifically designed to assist children with interacting more efficiently, enjoyably, and creatively with their favorite furry 4-legged friend. The contents of this one-hour workshop to be held and will be geared toward the discussion of age appropriate play with dogs, showcasing how various games can develop and encourage better interaction and bond between child and pet, addressing prevalent problems affecting certain types of play, and many other pertinent topics.

Children age 6 to 12 will benefit from learning how to recognize the advantages of incorporating new and innovative play strategies with their dog and how the wrong game may contribute to increasing bad behaviors.  Cost $15/child.  Limit to six well socialized dogs.

DOG IQ Testing

Interested in some easy ways to gauge your dog’s brainpower? The best way to measure intelligence is to assess your dog’s problem solving skills. Even if your dog isn’t the brightest kibble in the bag, you’ll still have fun! Problem solving games are great for keeping your dog busy indoors when the weather is too cold to be outside! Cost $10/dog

Dog involved holiday gift night

Build your relationship with your dog while having fun! Join us for an evening of holiday arts and crafts. Help your dog make a special pawprint ornament for a loved one! Cost $10/ornament

Quick classes on improving dog behavior

Looking for something special to do with your dog friends?  Interested in a unique party idea that involves dogs?  Book a canine group workshop designed just for you.

Acme Canine can design a workshop to the date, time and even the place that suits you the best.  All you need to do is have three (or more) dog owners interested in participating and the class is set.  Call (740) 548-1717 for more information.

Here are some topics for workshops:


A certified AKC Canine Good Citizen Evaluator from Acme Canine will test dogs for Canine Good Citizen and Community Canine. Cost is $10 per dog.

Improving commands and confidence building workshop

Does your dog know commands but loses focus at the sign of a squirrel or when the doorbell rings? Learn how to teach your dog to accept real-life distractions such as the door bell ringing, toy destruction, mailmen, loud noises, food on the floor and more. This 1-hour workshop offers an opportunity to work on distraction training and improve your dog’s self control.  $30/dog  Limit 6 dogs.

 Walk Without Pulling workshop

Is your dog walking you? Our certified trainer will show you how to get control of the situation and have your dog walking politely on leash by the end of the session. Cost $20/dog Limit six dogs.

Come on command workshop

Coming to you when called is one of the more important skills your dog can learn. The recall, along with a solid “emergency down” may save your dog’s life one day, so it’s worth putting time into training your dog to respond quickly. Although we strive never to put our dogs in unsafe situations, the “come” (or “recall”) command can avert a car-dog collision, a deer chase, or other hazards. On a more practical level, the “come” command presents your dog with opportunities for freedom precisely because you know you can call your dog back – in the park, on hiking trails, or anywhere. At the end of this two hour workshop you will have the skills to build a solid recall with your dog. This class is only available to ACME CANINE obedience clients. Cost is $50/dog Limit 6 dogs.

Special Interest classes for dogs and owners

Looking for something special to do with your dog friends?  Interested in a unique party idea that involves dogs?  Book a canine group class designed just for you.

Acme Canine can create a training package to the date, time and even the place that suits you the best.  All you need to do is have three (or more) dog owners interested in participating and the class is set.  Call (740) 548-1717 for more information.

Here are some suggestions for classes:


A dog’s nose is always working, so why not use this as an opportunity to exercise and bond with your dog? This two-part class will help develop your dog’s natural scenting ability. Your dog will learn to focus on a particular scent, find the source of that scent, and then alert you when he has found it. As your dog’s handler you will learn to observe your dog, paying close attention to his body language and other visual cues. Six week course. Limit six dogs. Cost $300/dog with $100 deposit to reserve spot.


Does your dog lack interest in fetching?  This class focuses on teaching the dog to retrieve various objects. Dogs will learn to take items from the owner’s hand, hold the items, move with the items, and then release the item to the owner when prompted. All parts of the class will be taught on leash. Distractions will be added as the class progresses in order to teach the dog to take and hold items in real world situations. Six week course. Limit six dogs. Cost $300/dog with $100 deposit to reserve spot.

Therapy Dog Training Tailored to You!

Looking for something special to do with your dog friends?  Interested in a unique party idea that involves dogs?  Book a canine group class designed just for you.

Acme Canine can specialize a group class to the date, time and even the place that suits you the best.  All you need to do is have three (or more) dog owners interested in participating and the is set.  Call (740) 548-1717 for more information.

Here’s some classes we currently offer:

Reading Dogs Class

Do you enjoy reading? Would you like to meet others in the area who are bringing dogs to libraries, schools and bookstores to help children with reading? In 6 weeks you and your dog will develop the skills to help children with reading comprehension. Six week course. Limit six dogs. Cost $300 with $100 deposit to reserve spot.

Therapy Dog / Canine Good Citizen

The Canine Good Citizen Program is a six week program that teaches responsible dog ownership to owners and basic good manners to both purebred and mixed breed dogs. Students will receive verbal instruction, handouts and visual demonstrations. An optional noncompetitive CGC Test is available on the last class day for a fee of $10.00 per student. Upon successful completion of the test you and your dog will receive a certificate from the American Kennel Club. Cost is $300 with a $100 to reserve your spot. Limit six well socialized dogs with knowledge of basic obedience commands.