By The Farmer's Dog | December 1, 2022

We’ve had a great time writing about dogs in 2022—covering the effort to rescue 4,000 beagles from a Virginia breeding facility; the magic behind a viral photograph of a dachshund and a rainbow; and, in sports news, a dog who plays baseball. In some way, every one of our stories is like a beloved puppy—it’s impossible to choose favorites. But, if you’re just catching up, we have picked out five of 2022’s most popular Digest articles for your perusal. Enjoy, and see you in 2023!

Ruth, who Escaped the Meat Trade, is Now “America’s Favorite Office Dog”

Ruth is a gloriously fluffy Samoyed whose life sometimes seems like a never-ending procession of pets and praise from everyone she meets. She’s brushed and groomed regularly. She was even named “America’s Favorite Office Dog” in a nationwide contest. There are days now when you can literally find Ruth wearing a crown like the queen she is, but she has not always been treated like royalty. Here is the story of how she got here, who helped, and why she and her human are meant for each other.

No One Is Talking About This: The Puppy Blues
It can be taboo to admit that your first days (and weeks, and months) with a puppy aren’t all wagging tails, licked faces, and soft snuggles—and can actually be quite challenging. The dark side includes razor-sharp teeth, lost sleep, and poop. So much poop. Here’s a firsthand account of this trying time, and how both pup and humans emerged happy and healthy.

The Farm Team’s Dog: Willie Provides Emotional Support for San Francisco Giants Minor Leaguers

One of the newest faces in pro baseball knows that a walk is even better than a hit. We spoke to Emily Cheatum of the San Francisco Giants about the ways Willie, an English Sheepdog, has helped the organization’s minor leaguers thrive amid the challenges of competition, travel, and injuries.

How Dogs Think: Common Questions Concerning Canine Cognition

Dogs are really, really smart. They can recognize their own smells, understand hundreds (and, sometimes, more than 1,000) words—and, in a few cases, even “read,” “talk,” and type. They also remember a lot, and are skilled at reading humans’ emotions. We spoke to experts about pups’ incredible abilities, and what humans can do to harness them.

What Is HQP (High-Quality Poop?)

While you’re not likely to put your dog’s poop on a podium in an art gallery, there is such a thing as “high-quality poop”—and the state of your dog’s stool can give you valuable information about their health. Here’s everything you ever wanted to know about how your pup’s poop should look, how it should feel, and how much of it there should be.