Now more than ever, you are needed to donate your old blankets, towels, and sheets to your local animal shelter. With financial cut-backs, repairs on shelters are often put off, so if it's drafty, the animals suffer. I know my shelter uses rags to stuff under doors. No kidding! Empty out those closets... this is your chance to get rid of stuff and do something useful!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Adoption Events in NYC Metro area -- April 2010

via Mayor's Alliance for NYC's Animals (includes NJ, Long Island, and NYC metro area):

April 2010
People for Animals: Dog Adoption Day at PetSmart
Saturday, April 3, 2010
11:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m.
PetSmartPromenade Mall, Bridgewater, NJ

All dogs are spayed/neutered, microchipped, and current on routine vaccinations.
For more information, visit the People for Animals website.

Social Tees Animal Rescue Foundation: Adoption Van at Chelsea Market
Saturday, April 10, 2010
1:00–6:00 p.m.
Chelsea Market, 9th Avenue (between 15th and 16th Streets), Manhattan

Cats, dogs, kittens, and puppies will be available for adoption in the North Shore Animal League America adoption van outside Chelsea Market.

For more information, contact Robert Shapiro at (212) 614-9653 or
 or visit the Social Tees Animal Rescue Foundation website.

Posh Pets Rescue: Adoption Van at TD Bank
Sunday, April 11, 2010
11:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.
TD Bank, 2109 Broadway (at 74th Street), Manhattan

Cats and kittens will be available for adoption in the North Shore Animal League America adoption van outside TD Bank.

For more information, contact Linda Vetrano at (917) 319-4304 or
 or visit the Posh Pets Rescue website.

Empty Cages Collective: Cat & Kitten Adoption Day at PS9 Pet Supplies
Sunday, April 18, 2010
12:30–5:30 p.m.
PS9 Pet Supplies, 169 North 9th Street (between Bedford and Driggs Avenues), Brooklyn

Meet our lovable adoptable cats and kittens rescued from AC&C's kill list and from our ongoing Trap-Neuter-Return projects. All cats are spayed/neutered, vaccinated, tested for FIV/FELV, and treated for parasites prior to adoption. All adoptions require a completed application and references, a home visit and drop-off, and a $75 minimum adoption donation.

For more information, contact Empty Cages Collective at (800) 880-2684 or or visit the Empty Cages Collective website.

People for Animals: Dog Adoption Day at PetSmart
Sunday, April 18, 2010
11:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m.
PetSmart, Promenade Mall, Bridgewater, NJ

All dogs are spayed/neutered, microchipped, and current on routine vaccinations.
For more information, visit the People for Animals website.

Empty Cages Collective: Cat & Kitten Adoption Day at PS9 Pet Supplies
Sunday, April 25, 2010
Noon–5:00 p.m., 218 5th Avenue (between President and Union Streets), Park Slope, Brooklyn

Cats and kittens will be available for adoption in the North Shore Animal League America adoption van outside

For more information, contact Empty Cages Collective at (800) 880-2684 or or visit the Empty Cages Collective website.

Linda's Feral Cat Assistance: Adoption Van
Saturday, April 25, 2010
Noon–6:00 p.m.
187 First Avenue (between 11th and 12th Streets), Manhattan

Cats and kittens will be available for adoption in the North Shore Animal League America adoption van.

For more information, contact Linda Bryant at (718) 205-1792 or or visit the Linda's Feral Cat Assistance website.

City Pitties: Companion Animal Clinic Day
Sunday, April 25, 2010
8:00 a.m. - Spay/neuter clinic (arrive at 7:00)
Noon–4:00 p.m. - Microchipping clinic, adoptions, info fair
Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, 5th Avenue (between 59th and 60th Streets), Brooklyn

The ASPCA will provide spay/neuter for cats and dogs, first come, first served for 20–25 animals. The surgery is free for those with a valid Medicaid card or proof of public assistance, $75 for those without proof of public assistance. Low-cost microchipping ($25, includes insertion and registration) for cats and dogs by the Mayor's Alliance for NYC's Animals. TTouch clinic by Tavi & Friends. Family-friendly bully breed dogs for adoption from City Pitties. Chocolate bars for sale.

For more information on spay/neuter, contact the ASPCA at (877) SPAY-NYC (877-772-9692). For more information on microchipping, contact the Mayor's Alliance for NYC's Animals at (212) 252-2350 or For more information on the event, visit the City Pitties website.



A Welcome Change

via The Toledo Blade:

Lucas County Commissioners hire Michigan woman as new dog warden


Lucas County Commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday afternoon to hire Julie Lyle as the new county dog warden.

Ms. Lyle, 31, who owns a dog training facility in Michigan's Upper Peninsula and also works in child day care, said she hopes to start the job within three weeks.
"I think she will foster a lot more progressive and welcoming atmosphere at the dog warden [department]," said Commissioner Ben Konop, who motioned to approve her contract. "She will move us into the modern era."

Full story:

Back story:

(Congrats to Ms. Lyle and to the dogs of Lucas County!  Thanks to The Toledo Blade for sticking with the story!)



Monday, March 29, 2010

Dog Thought To Be Vicious Might Have Been Euthanized

via You Tube:

This video, which ends very well but is hard to watch, is a perfect example of some dogs almost being euthanized because their terror is seen as aggression. That is, until someone with an experienced eye comes into the shelter, and a little life is changed. Watch the video; pass it along.



Friday, March 26, 2010

Homemade Dog Food -- an easy to understand guide and recipe

via Elizabeth Sanberg for Wise Bread:

This is an excellent article that spells out the cost savings and ease of making your own dog food.  It gives a recipe and shares some facts about what not to feed dogs.  This is good if you are concerned about ingredients in your dog's food, as well as looking to save money while feeding your big dog (or multiple little one's!). You can cook the food once a month and freeze it. The author states that she saves about $30 a month on her one big dog, so if you have multiple dogs, give it a read!



Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Dogs Helping Soldiers

via Pfc. Amy M. Lane for the the U.S. Army:
phote: Pfc. Sean Mcguire
FORT HOOD, Texas -- It can be difficult for some Soldiers to open up after a traumatizing event, or even if they are having problems at home while they are overseas. But the 85th Medical Detachment, 1st Medical Brigade, a combat stress control unit, is learning to work with some very unique ice breakers.
The 85th Soldiers, who are deploying to Iraq at the end of the month, have been training all week with four therapeutic dogs. The dogs are bred, trained and donated to the Army by America's VetDogs.

Stress control dogs can help Soldiers open up and start conversation flowing, said 1st Lt. Camille Betito, the executive officer for the 85th, whether they come into the clinic seeking help, or they're just out walking around the compound and someone approaches the animal.

"We're there for you if you need someone to talk to," Betito said. "The dogs can help people feel more at ease to start talking. Or sometimes just playing fetch or taking a few minutes to pet a dog can be a real comfort and morale booster when you're far away from your loved ones."

Betito said the animals are well loved by their handlers, and they even are assigned a rank, which helps humanize them.

Two representatives from America's VetDogs, Lisa Harvey and Valerie Kramer, came from New York to spend the week teaching Soldiers to work with the dogs. They brought four dogs with them, because the dogs the 85th will be working with are already in Iraq.

The Soldiers learned about the special gear the dogs wear, including: "Mutt Muffs", hearing protection made for dogs, "Doggles", their eye protection, and the boots that protect the dogs' feet from the desert sand.
The dogs went everywhere with the soldiers throughout the week, including doing physical training with them and taking a trip to the post exchange. They also went to the range, where the Soldiers learned how to deal with any fear that the dog may show at loud noises.

Pvt. Carol Ruiz enjoyed working with the dogs and is looking forward to working with one in Iraq.

"I love working with dogs," she said. "They can't talk back but they're always there for emotional support. Dogs are great company because they're always loving no matter what."

Read the rest of the story:



Guardian Angels for Soldier's Pet on NBC Nightly News, tonight at 6:30pm

Watch NBC's Nightly News with Brian Williams (6:30 pm ET/5:30 pm CT) and learn how Guardian Angels for Soldier's Pet is "Making a Difference."

Please help spread the word. This group fosters pets while their soldier is deployed!

See their website:




We're all home and everyone is well and chewing a bone. Night night.
More to report tomorrow. It was a wonderful and eventful day.

Mr. Wiggins and his first night at home, 3-24-10



Monday, March 22, 2010

I'm Off To Get The Wiggins, The Most Wonderful Wiggins Of All...

His flight bag is all ready with cushion, water bowl, two chew bones, a nylabone, a marrowbone, and don't you know Renaldo is poking his head in there to see what he's missing. I can just see it now.  I have his leash, collar with new tag, sweatshirt, and his foster Mom has his papers all ready to go. I rolled up all the smaller area rugs in the house and will see how he does before they go back down. The wee-wee pad is already stretched out waiting for him.

I'm going to spray the house with Nature's Miracle (another great product!!) to neutralize any Renaldo scents, thereby thwarting any soon-to-be Wiggins scents. He'll sleep in a crate the first couple of nights; I dug it out from the basement, cleaned it, and put a pillow in there with a fresh pillowcase.  He can be confident in his space and not pestered by his older brother.

It'll be fine. I'm meeting some soldier friends at the New Orleans airport for lunch and then getting Wiggins in the afternoon. We'll be home by 11:00pm, and I'll report in Wednesday morning before he goes to the vet.

Wish us luck!!



Saturday, March 20, 2010

Guess Who's Going To Be A New Mom?

So about two weeks ago I was on Facebook and I see a picture of a dog in Louisiana needing to be fostered. Virtually fostered. Had not seen that before but that doesn't mean anything. So I click the requisite clicks to get a bowl of food, or a blanket, etc. Turns out that for just $13 bucks you can buy the little guy a bed. I went to do that and though the links were not working, I learned that he was in a shelter that does not adopt out to the public, and he only had four days to live! They have such a problem with the number of unwanted pets down there that he was basically in a euthanization site, where either his owner or a rescue group can get him out, but that's it. And, they use the gas chamber to euthanize them, to boot. Yuck. Very sad.

Some Southern states still use the gas chamber and it's barbaric. Alaska - or at least some parts of it (like Dillingham) - allows the dogs to be shot in the head at the garbage dump. I like most other areas of the country and while I'm different than a lot of New Yorkers in this way (the snobbery in NYC about other areas has always annoyed me), I'm glad I do live in a place where this method is not the norm. Not that the city shelters give them more than a week, but the death is a needle given and while they don't give the valium-like drugs I insist my own dogs get when the time comes, it is quick (the gas chamber usually takes 20 minutes). We live in an imperfect world.

Anyway, so between calling to make a contribution (I give at least something to most special cases I list here), getting fixated on the dog because he looks just like my little guy, Renaldo, and finding out he needs a home desperately, I ended up applying to adopt him. Now, to some degree, I do think he was already in a foster when I clicked to get him the bowl of food. But it doesn't matter. A rescue group took him and put them in one of their homes, and he is sleeping in a bed, and not going in the gas chamber.

My application was approved (after a vet check), and I began to look into calling upon one of the newly developed non-profits whose specialty is to transport dogs from the south to the north, where people are ready to take them in. This, in some dog rescue circles, is an apostasy. Why take in a dog from another area when you can get one near you? Well, it's a fair question, I guess, though the gas chamber thing does weigh on a person. Plus, he's the same mix as my dog (who I thought was a chihuahua-dachshund mix and now I realize he's a minipin-chihuahua mix, though I'm not yet telling him that since he likes to burrow like a dachshund). He needs a home and I have been wanting a second dog as a companion to Renaldo. It's perfect that they are the same size, color, and look so darn alike I think Renaldo will have shock when I bring -- Mr. Wiggins -- home.



So I began to look into the rescues that transport. They are very useful (and a Godsend!) but I honestly didn't have the time to keep watch on their message boards to grab a time slot and road-trip-leg that was available (made possible by their angel volunteers), and piece together a trip from Louisiana all the way to New York City. I'm off next week from work and wanted to do the transport then, getting Wiggins acclimated to me, my apartment, Renaldo (and Renaldo to him!). So I instead booked a flight with Jet Blue to New Orleans, and the wonderful rescue woman is driving two hours each way to bring the new other little guy to me. I'll bring my pet carrier and off we'll go, after lunch in a nearby park. We'll have a day at home to get settled (and make sure we know to poop and pee outside), and then Thursday is vet day. Friday we'll do more lounging and getting Wiggins and Renaldo used to each other.

I'll keep you posted on the meeting of the minds. Yes, it's risky to not have had them meet before, but Renaldo likes other dogs, Mr. Wiggins likes other dogs, and everyone is going to have to share. There are dogs to be saved, and I have the room.

Of course, after I found out I was able to definately adopt him, and I made the flight and confirmed the rescue lady dropping him off, I went to the pet stores and had fun. Mr. Wiggins does not know it yet but his signature color is blue. A muted blue, though I did have some angst choosing between the royal blue harness and leash I also bought but will be returning, and the more subte blue that is a good companion color to Renaldo's signature color of hunter green. I also got Renaldo a new set because I can't play favorites, you know!  So they both ended up getting a new bed (there are now a total of six in the house for two dogs, plus The Big Bed, which no doubt they will both hog), new leashes, new bowls, toys, bones, giant size wee-wee pads, and one got a baby-carry-bag but since Renaldo doesn't fit in it (it looked like the doggie version of the glove with O.J. Simpson's attorney -- "if you don't fit you must acquit"), I doubt Wiggins will since he's only a pound less than Renaldo, so that will be going back to the store too.

The new stuff has been on a chair in the living room for a week and I keep adding to it. I feel like I've been "working on the baby's room."

More to follow....



Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Have a Good Irish Day

Just a couple of cute pics from Ihasa Hotdog and My Little Cottage:



Monday, March 15, 2010

De Likker


Dog Chews Car

via The Associated Press:  (You gotta read this)



Sunday, March 14, 2010

Best Friends Animal Society is Having a Meet-and-Greet - March 28th in NYC

I joined Best Friends Animal Society last month when I heard they did a full spread on Rolling Dog Ranch (in Beautiful Montana), and I wanted to support them as well as get a copy of their magazine. I had no idea they have outreach in the NYC and surrounding areas (NJ, CT, as well).

I now get a email newsblast and this month this is what they sent:

Dear Valued Best Friends Members and Volunteers,

We would like to take this opportunity to invite you to a Meet-and-Greet event with new Best Friends New York City Program Manager, Jamie Rubin. This will be a great opportunity for everyone to get to know each other, as well as for you to hear about some of the exciting programs in store for the New York City area. These programs include a Super Adoption, Strut Your Mutt walk, Humane Education Programs for kids such as the "I Read To Animals" program, 4-Legged Food Drives, Pup My Ride transports for rescued puppy mill dogs, tabling events, and more!

We are so excited to meet you, hear your ideas and to share these new volunteer opportunities and information about programs with you. Your involvement is critical to our success. Please feel free to invite anyone you think may be interested in attending and learning about Best Friends. Thank you for your support, for helping the animals of New York City and elsewhere, and for helping to take a giant step toward the time when there are No More Homeless Pets.

The Meet-And-Greet will be held on:
Sunday, March 28th
3:00pm - 5:30pm

Whole Foods Tribeca
270 Greenwich Street
New York
2nd floor cafe

To RSVP, or if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact Tammy Heeber at:

We look forward to seeing you there!

If you have a question or concern about animal welfare please email Community Animal Assistance at



Give a Hand to Champ The Hero Dog

Please cross post this (and contribute if you can), as the rescue that took Champ in is paying his extensive vet bills.

via KTLA:
LOS ANGELES-- "Champ" the four year old German Shepherd mix was shot and badly hurt while protecting his family's home, and was scheduled to be euthanized after weeks of being kept as evidence. Now he needs help.

The shooter lodged several bullets in the dog's body, leaving Champ with a broken jaw bone, nerve problems, a bullet entry under his eye, and wounds covering his neck, shoulder, and abdomen.
Champ was kept as evidence while the intrusion case was pending, and was scheduled to be euthanized because his owners declined to get him the costly medical care he needed.
For full story via KTLA:,0,2789359.story

For the update from Coastal German Shepherd Rescue, the rescue who took Champ in:
We received a plea from the South LA Shelter about a dog named Champ who was shot 5 times while protecting him home from an intruder. Champ has several bullets lodged in his body and needs medical care. He has been kept as evidence while the case was pending. He has now been released from evidence and will be euthanized if he is not rescued. His owners refused to get Champ the medical care he needs.
Coastal German Shepherd Rescue would like to rescue Champ and get him the medical care that he so desperately needs. His medical care is going to be costly as he has numerous injuries. The injuries that we know of are: bullets lodged behind ear, broken jaw bone, bullet lodged in upper leg causing nerve issues in his leg.

Champ needs to be seen by our wonderful vet team ASAP. We are planning to pick him up tomorrow and begin his care. We need your help though! Our medical bills are huge and we need your generous support to save Champ. Please make a donation to help save Champ today!

Update 3/12/10

Champ is truly a champ! We picked him up today and transported him to our wonderful vet team at Alicia Pet Care Center. He is getting a full body work up and we will know tonight what the medical plan is.

I can tell you this, Champ is one sweetheart of a boy! With the help of two other rescuers, we were able to capture his rescue on video and pictures. Check back soon for those. Champ gave his paw to all that would stop and give him a pet and a hello. He has wounds covering his neck, shoulder, abdomen and a bullet entry under his eye. With all of these wounds he still remained calm and collected! Please help us help Champ get his much needed medical care today! Every donation helps!

If you are interested in more information or if you would be interested in fostering or adopting this wonderful guy, please email Tiffany at

xoxo (No judgement on Champ's family. We never know someone else's financial circumstance.)

Saturday, March 13, 2010


via The Associated Press:



Being There For Joey

I'm back from beautiful San Francisco and Los Angeles, where I traveled for a week for work. While in San Fran I had the pleasure of meeting a newly adopted female black and white pitbull, when I stopped in a pet store for a bone for Renaldo. A woman had adopted the pit from a shelter (and certain death) only five days before. What a sweetie! She was playing with toys in the store, picking out what Mommy was going to buy her. Pitbulls love squeak toys. I cautioned her not to put her dog with little dogs just yet, or even ever. I'm not a fan of pits with little dogs or kids, that is, unless they are raised together and the dog was a puppy or a very young one. I know a lot of pitbull fans probably will think that's an apostasy but 'thems the breaks.' It isn't that the dogs are bad (I love them, and leave in 45 minutes to go walk the babies at Yonkers Animal Shelter) but when they do bite, that bite is catastrophic. My personal feeling is that they are best suited (unless adopted young or as a puppy) by a single person, a couple, or a parent with an older kid. I say this while knowing of numerous families that have kids and pits, and I'm glad those work out. Were it my kid, I would not mix them. There are so many single people, so many childless couples that make suitable homes, and then get the love and companionship that comes from an extremely loyal and silly dog, that that seems the best route to me. They are wonderful animals, but one must exercise caution at all times when putting any dog with kids. Kids do kid things -- running, squeaking, shouting, sometimes crying, and some of these can be triggers for an already unsure dog, especially when left alone with a child.  And then there are the dogs that were never trained to not play-bite (something you can do with some dogs but should never consider doing with a pit!) and they don't know their own strength; this can escalate quickly into a bad situation. So the chance of catastrophy, while maybe not as likely as being in a car accident, is there and it normally ends badly for everyone involved.

While in San Fran, I spotted three other pits who were walking with cool looking people in the city. SF has a tendancy to be a politically correct (ha!) and folks there are pushing back against anti-pitbull forces. Good, they are beautiful and loving dogs and deserve homes.

Anyway, I scan the news for interesting stories all the time, and some I post here. This one happened back here in New York City, and I'm glad Joey is with a group that cares about him now. This kind of neglect is unnecessary, and cruel.  Mange can be treated easily enough; it's just a long treatment.

The heroes of this story are Picasso Veterinary Fund
and the
New York Police Department.

In case you don't know who Picasso Veterinary Fund is, here's a quote from their site:

Traditionally, animals with extreme medical needs who are taken in by animal control shelters are euthanized because the funds needed to pay for extensive surgeries and other expensive treatment just haven't been available. But many of these animals would make wonderful, loving pets if only they had access to the medical treatment they need. The Picasso Veterinary Fund was created to give these animals the second chances they deserve. By paying for medical treatment that otherwise would not be available to them, the Fund is saving lives that in the past would have been lost.

And this is the story about Joey, who is now doing well, also from their site:
When NYPD officers found Joey tied up to a bench at a beach in Far Rockaway on a cold February morning, he was more than a sight for sore eyes; he was the picture of the shameful result of neglect, to the point of abuse, that someone had perpetrated against this calm young dog.

Malnourished at 48 pounds and suffering from a horrific case of demodectic mange that had advanced to the point where it ruptured his hair follicles, the year-and-a-half old Pit mix also suffers from a bacterial skin infection secondary to the mange that involves three different types of bacteria. He also has a deep wound on his front left leg.
Here's the full story:

I would encourage support of this great group. Non profits are hard hit these days and even small gifts matter.


xoxo (Thanks to Picasso Veterinary Fund and the New York Police Department -- truly NY's finest).

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Away for a week

Blogging will be light since I have a business trip to Los Angeles and San Fransisco for the next week. In the meantime, enjoy this great pic.

Photo credit: Jason Bacon (who takes one good picture!)


xoxo (la-la-la!)

Monday, March 1, 2010

Lucky Dog, Lucky Lady

via The Herald-Zeitung:

Dog places highest value on ill woman

By Mike Fitsko
February 21, 2010

If you have or have ever owned a loving pet, you’ll certainly appreciate this story written by an anonymous writer and recently sent to me by an old high school friend who recently learned she has breast cancer. If you don’t currently have a pet, you might decide you want one after reading this!

Mary and her husband Jim had a dog, Lucky. Lucky was a real character. Whenever Mary and Jim had company come for a weekend visit they would warn their friends to not leave their luggage open because Lucky would help himself to whatever struck his fancy.

Inevitably someone would forget and something would come up missing. Mary or Jim would go to Lucky’s toy box in the basement and there the treasure would be amid all of Lucky’s favorite toys. Lucky always stashed his finds in his toy box and he was very particular that his toys stay in the box.

It happened that Mary found out she had breast cancer. Something told her she was going to die of this disease … she was just sure it was fatal.

She scheduled the double mastectomy, fear riding her shoulders.

The night before she was to go to the hospital, she cuddled with Lucky.

A thought struck her … what would happen to Lucky? Although the 3-year-old dog liked Jim, he was Mary’s dog through and through.

If I die, Lucky will be abandoned, Mary thought. He won’t understand that I didn’t want to leave him. The thought made her sadder than thinking of her own death.

The double mastectomy was harder on Mary than her doctors had anticipated and Mary was hospitalized for more than two weeks. Jim took Lucky for his evening walk faithfully but the dog just drooped, whining and miserable. But finally the day came for Mary to leave the hospital.

When she arrived home, Mary was so exhausted she couldn’t even make it up the steps to her bedroom. Jim made his wife comfortable on the couch and left her to nap.

Lucky stood watching Mary but he didn’t come to her when she called. It made Mary sad but sleep soon overcame her and she dozed.

When Mary woke, for a second, she couldn’t understand what was wrong. She couldn’t move her head and her body felt heavy and hot. Panic soon gave way to laughter though when Mary realized the problem. She was covered, literally blanketed, in every treasure Lucky owned!

While she slept the sorrowing dog had made trip after trip to the basement and back bringing his beloved mistress his favorite things in life. He had covered her with his love. Mary forgot about dying.

Instead she and Lucky began living again, walking further and further together every night.

It’s been 12 years now and Mary is still cancer-free. And Lucky? He still steals treasures and stashes them in his toy box, but Mary remains his greatest treasure.