Pat Shingleton: "Woof-Woof-Arf-Arf Days"
Canis Major or Sirius was designated the "Dog Star" by ancient astronomers. As noted in a previous column, Romans believed that Sirius rose before or at sunrise, convinced this star was the cause of hot, sultry weather. To appease the rage of Sirius and believing that the star caused the pattern, they sacrificed a brown dog, thus the reference - Dog Days. Ancient Rome catalogued the Dog Days from July 24 through August 24 and The Old Farmer's Almanac lists the traditional timing as the 40 days from July 3 to August 11. Since June 20, the sun has reached its highest point and slowly begins its track toward the equator. In 2012 we logged two 101 degree readings. This season, July 12th recorded 96 with June 14 at 95.