Rolling around in the dirt

Buddy, a one-year-old male English setter mix, came to CAPS when his owner unexpectedly died.

Buddy, a one-year-old male English setter mix, came to CAPS when his owner unexpectedly died.

One of the joys of summer is sitting in the garden with friends. Recently, my friend Pat and I enjoyed a cup of coffee in the cool of the morning before the sun graced us with heat. Her cat, Electra, was enjoying the summer by rolling in the sand getting very dirty. She meowed and arched her back to be petted.

I was curious why Electra chose to roll in the sand. I have observed other cats and dogs doing the same thing. It seems that “dust bathing” is a activity among all mammals. It must feel quite nice because it is a common practice.

Perhaps dirt has a cooling effect but it just may feel nice. Scent marking may play a role in dust bathing. As the cat rolls, she marks the area with scent glands, which are located on her paw pads, cheeks and top of the head. The message is” this is my territory.” Another theory is that rolling in dirt helps remove parasites such as fleas. It could also help remove loose hairs from your cat’s coat. My personal feeling is that they roll in dirt because it feels good and they can get away with it. I loved the haughty look I got from Electra whenshe demanded to be let into the house. It was a command not a request. Cats have staff and dogs have owners. I’m just one of the staff.


Buddy is a one-year-old male English setter mix. He was surrendered with his BFF (best furry friend) Max when their owner unexpectedly died. He is playful and good with cats, children and dogs. He loves to play with Max and would love to find a home with her, but he would be okay in a home of his own. Come out and walk with Max for a fun time.


CAPS is presently looking for an executive director who will oversee operations at CAPS. You must love animals! This is a 30-hour-a-week job. Please call 775-423-7500 for details and ask for Pauline. You may also email your résumé to with “Attention Pauline” in the subject line.

Volunteers to walk dogs or play with cats. We have enthusiastic dogs and cats just waiting to meet you. Call 775-423-7500 for details.

Aluminum cans, which we recycle to augment our shelter funds.


Amanda Bown who has been the Executive Director of CAPS for the past 11/2 years. She had worked for CAPS 11 years before becoming director. We are sad to lose Amanda who is moving on to a new phase in her life. We wish her success and are most grateful for the many years she spent loving and nurturing the CAPS guests. A Four Paws Salute to you! We wish you have a happy-ever-after.


CAPS will be at Walmart Aug. 19 with our Kissin’ Booth and a sweet smooching pooch. Come by to get your pooch smooch. We will also have caps, short-sleeved T-shirts, hoodies and sweatshirts, so please check them out after you have been smooched.


July Pet Holidays:

National Craft for Your Local Shelter Dogs

Flower Tree Nursery will be raffling a 20-gallon tree of your choice on Sept.15, and the winner doesn’t have to be present to win. The raffle tickets are available at Flower Tree, and they are $1 for one ticket and $5 for six tickets.


CAPS’ mailing address is P.O. Box 5128, Fallon, NV 89406. CAPS’ phone number is 775-423-7500. CAPS’ email address is Please visit the CAPS website ( and Facebook page (Churchill Animal Protection Society). Be sure to “Like” CAPS on Facebook because we are really likable.

Do you have questions, comments or a great story? Contact me

Kathleen Williams-Miller, a CAPS volunteer, contributed this week’s column.


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