Dogs are pretty smart creatures

HINTS FROM HELOISE

Dear Readers: Dogs are intelligent, but just how smart they are is now coming to light. Experts have found that a dog can be as smart as a 2-year-old child!

Dogs can learn upward of 250 words, similar to a 2-year-old. The smartest breeds are border collies, poodles and German shepherds; we’ve taught these particular breeds to be sage, the experts believe. Hound dogs, like beagles, tend to score lower.

Dogs understand social structure, too (they are pack animals), and they even show moods such as happiness and anger, but not so much complex emotions.

Experts agree: Dogs are smarter than we thought they are! — Heloise

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Dear Readers: Catherine emailed a picture of her adorable kitten, Moon. Brown-and-black-striped, Moon has a sweet white muzzle and chest, and he’s playing with his favorite squeaky toy.

Catherine adopted Moon from Animal Care Services here in San Antonio; check your shelter for a fabulous, fun and furry friend!

To see Moon and our other Pet Pals, visit www.Heloise.com and click on “Pet of the Week.” — Heloise

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Dear Heloise: My cane is good for more than stability: I use it to push my laundry basket from the bedroom to my laundry area, to pull the clothes from the back of the dryer, and to move clothes if they get stuck in the washer’s agitator.

I also use it to smooth out the blankets when making my bed. I use the crook end to pull things out from under the bed or chair.

I even have been known to shake it at a naughty grandchild! Love your column. — Big Red, via email

Readers, the primary importance is your balance. Make sure you can do these tasks safely. — Heloise

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Dear Heloise: I save store flyers and fold a few pages in my purse and also store some under my sink. Sure saves money on toilet paper for wrapping unmentionables. — Sara, via email

Glad you mentioned it! Yes, these items should never be flushed. What else is on the “No-Flush List”? Dental floss, facial tissue, paper towels, “flushable” wipes, cotton balls and swabs. — Heloise

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Dear Heloise: I found an old pill in the bottom of my purse. I wasn’t going to take the pill anyway, but there was a number on it. I put that number into a search engine online, and it told me the name of the medication. Good to know! — Tamara W. in Salt Lake City

Always be cautious of medication that you’re not sure of the expiration date. — Heloise

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Dear Heloise: My fine hair flies out with static electricity when I brush it. I’ve found that rubbing my hair with a fabric softener sheet makes it more manageable. — Dr. Mary J., Katy, Texas