WoO WOo it’s the crazy train


shelter dog

Late this week, a petition began circulating the Internet asking for the removal of the director of the Trumbull County pound citing the reason that the pound is “dilapidated and creates a stressful and unhealthy environment for the dogs.” That stressful and unhealthy environment is described as “dogs can see each other through the chain link.” I don’t know the director of the pound personally, but a group I am involved with has been working with Trumbull County pound volunteers to help them make their pets more adoptable. So we’ve been supplying vaccines to them and giving them other help when they need it. Does the pound need a facelift? It certainly couldn’t hurt. But this petition sounds more like a witch hunt to me.

I don’t know who started the petition, and I don’t care. I only know that it was shared on Facebook and I saw it in my news feed from a number of different sources, and most egregiously, it had a lot of comments. Uneducated comments and false accusations by people who clearly don’t know what they are talking about. There was a comment that said Trumbull has “excessive killing,” and another that suggested there was a misappropriation of funds. Yet another took issue with the director for having once bred doodles.

C’mon people.

There comes a time when you have to use a little bit of common sense, do a little bit of research, and let that train roll on over the cliff without you. I was so disappointed to see some of the people I respect in rescue jump on this bandwagon without asking any questions.

WoO WOo look out, it’s the crazy train.

crazy train

 

This petition and the attention it garnered wreaked a lot of havoc for the people working and volunteering at Trumbull County pound. They had to take time away from their mission to respond to erroneous complaints. That meant that doing their jobs was impossible while they dealt with this.

If the focus of the petition had been Franklin County Dog Shelter, New York Animal Care and Control (NYACC), Robeson, or PETA, I could have understood. But frankly, I don’t get it.

I didn’t sign the petition and I hope that you won’t either.

I found the comment about “excessive killing” particularly rankling. Let’s take a look at some actual numbers, shall we?

In the last 4 months, Trumbull County Dog Pound took in 220 dogs. Out of these, 11 animals were euthanized. 8 of those animals are cited as owners’ pets. 3 are cited as strays. I was never very good at math, but even I can see that these numbers work out to a 5% kill rate. Eight years ago, Trumbull County had an almost 100% kill rate! Whoa.

I’m not sure what the deal was with the 8 owner’s pets. Were they pets that owners brought in for euth because they couldn’t afford to take their pet to a vet for that? If that’s the case, then Trumbull’s kill rate is closer to 1.5%. “Excessive killing”? Are you freaking kidding me?math

Yes, none of us want to see pets killed. In a perfect world, there would be only responsible pet owners and excellent homes for every pet. However, we’re talking about planet Earth here. This pound has come a long way in the past eight years. They are moving in the right direction. 5% is not “excessive killing”.

If someone wants to focus on improving Trumbull County pound, perhaps their energy would be better spent trying to figure out how to get the pound the funds needed to update the facility with better kennels. There is no evidence that there has been any misappropriation of funds.

Just to highlight the differences, let’s look at some other numbers and put the Trumbull numbers in perspective. Since we’re talking about Ohio…let’s shine a little light on what’s happening in Franklin County. (link removed, because a reader pointed out that the website reporting the statistics I quoted was incorrect.)

In March of this year alone,  139 dogs were killed. Although the pound’s website posts statistics that make it look like they have an 80% live release rate, I’ve been told by volunteers at that pound that those numbers are not accurate. The pound allegedly double counts some adoptions, padding the live release rate, and that they are not accurate on reporting euths. While the pound’s website shows a consistent 20% kill rate, the actual number is probably somewhere in the 20% – 50% range. That number could be greatly reduced if Franklin wasn’t using an outdated method of behavior testing.

Elsewhere in the country, NYACC was still at a 33% kill rate for 2015, although the beginning of this year shows a marked improvement. Hopefully, NYACC will be able to maintain and build on the progress they’ve made. In contrast, The Robeson County pound in NC killed 62% of the dogs in its care in 2015.focus PETA remains high at a 74% kill rate. If you want to talk about misappropriation of funds, I would say that fundraising for a group called “People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals” and then killing 3/4 of the animals you take in is about as misappropriated as things can get.

Focus people. Focus.

(note: when I wrote this post, I had originally cited some other notoriously bad shelters..like MDAS and MAS…but when I researched their numbers, I found that both have made great strides in lowering their kill rates and striving for no kill. Now if we can just get MAS to quit mistreating the animals in their care we’ll really be getting somewhere.)


thanksIt’s spring and the insects that threaten our dogs’ health are out there. We are in immediate need of heartworm preventative, which we buy here: Drs Foster & Smith and Frontline (see the wishlist link below).

We are also always looking for coupons for certain items we purchase for the dogs on a regular basis. If you have Rachael Ray Nutrish coupons,  Cesar coupons, or milkbone coupons that  you will not be using, please save them for us. Contact me if you have some to send. And if you come across an errant box of Purina Busy HeartyHides in your store, for God’s sake, send them to us!

I also have a wishlist of items that we just can’t afford, but that would make life a whole lot easier.

Things we need Up on the Woof

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Animal Advocacy, Random Woofs, The Woof on Rescue Groups | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The War of the Walkies


There are five dogs in our house, but not all of them go on daily walks. Rocket Boy won’t walk with me beyond where the van is parked in the driveway, because the further he gets away from Dalene, the less he likes it. Taco has a luxating patella, so at around 50 yards, she’s had enough and won’t budge unless she is carried. Maria will walk, but it has to be at least 75 degrees and dry outside, and she has to be in the proper mood. That leaves Zoey and Waldo…who both get walked several times a day. Zoey is a great walker. She doesn’t pull on the leash, and she prances like a dog in a Warner Brothers cartoon.

Waldo is a different story.

My walkies with Waldo have been fraught with problems from the start. We probably should have enrolled Waldo in obedience classes when he was a puppy. I wanted to, but I was met with resistance from D., who said that none of our dogs had been to obedience classes, and all of them were great. The thing is, all of the other dogs are little dogs who weigh less than 20 pounds…so when they misbehave, I can just pick them up and make them stop. Waldo weighs almost 100 lbs, and although he is a big sweet gentle dog, he knows exactly how powerful he is, and he’s not afraid to push his weight, (or me), around.

lane

Waldo and I walk 1-3 miles every day, rain/shine or snow. We walk our dirt lane from the cabin to the road and back again, which is a half mile each way. We encounter activity or signs of previous activity on the lane during every walk. There is a lot of wildlife: birds, rabbits, skunks, squirrels, chipmunks, snakes, deer, coyotes, and fox. Sometimes we encounter a neighbor’s cat or dog, our mail carrier, Jehovah’s Witnesses, hunters, rangers looking for hunters, and lost hikers. There is a lot of action given the fact that we are surrounded by acres and acres of thick woods. Once, we even came home to a troop of boy scouts camped in a clearing alongside our lane. All of these encounters are of utmost interest to Waldo, who experiences each instance as though it is the most exciting/terrifying /fascinating thing in the world.

This has usually turned out badly for me.
walkie ride
Sometimes, like in the case of the hunters, very badly. Although I recognize that our walks are for and about him, I don’t see why I have to be dragged, yanked, trampled, tripped, and beaten up in the process. I have been flipped onto the gravel, dragged into the woods, yanked off my feet, had tendons twanged, joints popped, wrists burned, neck whiplashed, and knuckles crunched.  I was beginning to have visions of him running down the lane dragging a leash, my dismembered arm bouncing merrily along behind him. The boy was killing me.
arm2
I switched him from a collar to a no-pull harness, but he acted like I was killing him whenever I put it on him. He didn’t pull as badly, but the narrow straps were uncomfortable for him, and putting it on him was so complicated I was exhausted before we even got going. I tried a regular harness, but that just gave him better leverage for dragging me around. D. bought him a backpack harness but it hung off of him sideways and the nylon seemed too flimsy to me. I wasn’t confident it would hold up to his abuse. Then, D bought him a comfort harness, which has a handle on it. She thought I’d be able to hold onto the handle to control him. That harness rides over to one side or the other (depending on where he’s dragging me), and when I try to control him with the handle, he just stretches the elastic like a rubber band. It was this harness that left me flat on my back and red-faced in the dirt the day Waldo decided that those hunters had no business walking our lane. When the dust cleared, I was still holding onto the handle.

“Are you OK?” they asked, as I lay there with the world spinning.
“No. But please, just. go. away.”

Through all of this, I have suggested that a gentle leader might be the solution, but D has forbidden it because she thinks they make dogs look vicious, like they are wearing a muzzle. She is also certain that I would snap his massive neck with my superhuman strength. (? what?) Then, a couple of weeks ago I saw a photo in my Facebook feed of a dog wearing a harness that I instantly knew would work. As I gazed on its magnificence, the heavens opened and a choir of angels sang out a glorious note of joyous exaltation.
heaven
It was the most beautiful harness I had ever seen. It was simple and innovative, and such a brilliantly obvious solution to my walkies tribulations. Not only that, its name perfectly summed up what I wanted: it was a Walk Your Dog with Love harness. I was absolutely certain it was going to be transformative. I googled the manufacturer and begged them to let me try one on Waldo, who in my opinion, should be the poster boy for the product.

I provided my moose’s weight and measurement and did a dance of joy when the sample arrived. Waldo seemed to instinctively know that this harness is different. It is such a simple design that I was momentarily flustered when I went to put it on him, because it was way too easy, and I thought it couldn’t possibly be that simple. The smart people at Walk Your Dog with Love anticipated this reaction , and directed me to a video on their website that shows just how absolutely possible it is to be that simple. I put it on him, sized it, and 30 seconds later, we set out on our first trial walkies.
walk with love
The leash hooks on to the front of the Walk Your Dog With Love harness instead of the back. How brilliant is that?! That little detail is the key. It makes Waldo want to walk beside me or slightly behind me, instead of pulling and straining ahead of me. He also can’t get the leverage to drag me from the front. We used it for a week, but I held off on writing about it because I was waiting for a certain day.

That day arrived yesterday, when a deer crashed through the scrub alongside us, then bolted across the lane. Waldo lunged, but stopped short of the jerk that in the past had threatened to wrench my arm from its socket. He couldn’t pull me, or drag me, or twirl me like a top, because the design of the harness prevents it. While the whitetail bounded away from us, I opened my arms to the sky and sang my joy to the heavens.
praise
Walking my dog with love has ended the war of the walkies and is a win/win solution.

#walkyourdogwithlove #bestinvention www.WalkYourDogWithLove.com

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It’s spring and the insects that threaten our dogs’ health are out there. We are in immediate need of heartworm preventative, which we buy here: Drs Foster & Smith and Frontline (see the wishlist link below).

We are also always looking for coupons for certain items we purchase for the dogs on a regular basis. If you have Rachael Ray Nutrish coupons,  Cesar coupons, or milkbone coupons that  you will not be using, please save them for us. Contact me if you have some to send. And if you come across an errant box of Purina Busy HeartyHides in your store, for God’s sake, send them to us!

I also have a wishlist of items that we just can’t afford, but that would make life a whole lot easier.

Things we need Up on the Woof

 

 

Posted in Random Woofs, The Woof on Dog Products | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Doggie Watering Fountains


People often ask me for advice when they have questions about their dogs – or if not advice, then they ask what my experience has been in regards to their question. For that reason, I’ve started a new category here Up on the Woof: The Woof on Dog Products, where I will share my experiences with different products.

This is where I’ll tell you about products that have worked for me, and my dogs, and maybe some that haven’t.

Finding the Right Doggie Watering Fountain

With five dogs in our house, filling the community water bowl can be a full time job. Over the years, we’ve tried various self-watering bowls, with varying degrees of success. The biggest issue with all of them has been that they either didn’t hold enough water for our multi-dog household, or if they did, the bowl was slimy and full of debris before the water ran out. When we moved into the log cabin, we were faced with an additional issue: the house worked on a cistern, and even though the water is potable, we haven’t always been confident of its purity. So we decided to try out a dog water fountain.

Switching from a standing bowl to a fountain may take some getting used to for your dog. When we first made the switch we had a hard time getting Waldo to drink from it. The noise and moving water worried him. He kept putting his paw in the bowl and splashing the water out.

The first fountain we tried was on the small side. It held 2 quarts of water. The pump was kind of noisy and was small and fussy to disassemble for cleaning. The filter was a tubular mesh that fit over the pump and was quickly overwhelmed with debris. As it only held 2 quarts of water, our five dogs drained it quickly and it needed frequent refilling and cleaning. I could never get it to work right after cleaning, but would have to let the pump dry out completely before reassembling and filling.

clearflow fountainThe second fountain we purchased was more expensive, but it has worked great for us. It is a K&H CleanFlow Fountain. It was  more expensive than the first fountain, but it was money well spent. The CleanFlow filters the water up to 130 times per hour. It has a quiet pump that is easy to take apart for cleaning, and holds a large stand-alone charcoal filter. The filter catches any hair or debris and the replacement filters are inexpensive. When you clean it, you can see how well the filter works! The pump can be reassembled immediately and will work right away, without a lengthy drying time.

filtersThe best part about the CleanFlow is that every size holds more than a gallon of water. We bought the largest size, which holds two gallons. Our dogs drink more water since we got the fountain, because the filtered and moving water tastes fresher. The fountain came with two cleaning brushes; one for the bottle and one for the pump. When the water gets low, a rattling noise lets you know that the bottle needs to be refilled.

When you are making the switch to a fountain for your dog, keep in mind how many dogs will be using it so you choose the right size, and remember that there will be an adjustment period for your pet.

 

Posted in The Woof on Dog Products | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Oh My Achey-Breaky Heart-y-hide.


When Erich Segal wrote the words “Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” in his best selling book Love Story, one thing was abundantly clear. Segal didn’t have a dog.

If you live with a dog, you know that “Sorry” makes up a large portion of your conversation with them. I spend an extraordinarily ridiculous amount of time  apologizing to my dogs.

“I’m sorry, it’s pouring down rain, we can’t take a walk right now.”
“I’m sorry, I can’t give you any of this, it has onions/raisins in it.”
“I’m sorry, but you have to stay home.”
“I’m sorry, but I’m not giving you a sixth biscuit.”
“I’m sorry the cabinet door hit you in the face, you should back up a little.”
“I’m sorry I tripped over you, are you OK?”
“I’m sorry I accidentally kicked you. Really. I’m so sorry!”
“I’m sorry, but we are out of treats.”
“I’m sorry, but that’s all we have for dinner tonight.”
“I’m sorry, but you have to stay out of the kitchen while I mop the floor.”
“I’m sorry, but I cannot find your favorite ball.”
“I’m sorry, but I have to take that away from you before you get hurt.”
“I’m sorry, but I’m not sharing my sandwich.”

The list goes on and on.

This week, we reached a whole new level of sorry, and honestly, I don’t know how to make this one OK. For the past two months, we’ve been trying to get Rocket Boy his favorite treats, but we haven’t been able to find it in the stores. I finally called the manufacturer to ask if they were having distribution problems, and was told that they have

                                                      DISCONTINUED THE ITEM.

NOOOOO!!!!    O.M.G.  WHY, Purina, WHYYYYYYY?
Clearly, Purina does not know that they have just ruined our peaceful existence.

If the truth be told, I should be whipped for being a faithful customer of Purina’s Busy HeartyHide. Whipped because I was on the front lines of reporting about Purina’s Waggin Train Chicken Jerky treats being responsible for the sickness and death of dogs. You can read about that mess here: Chicken Jerky is killing dogs.  I protested along with a lot of other people about their refusal to take responsibility, or even to just recall the damn treats…but secretly, I still continued to buy the HeartyHides, (which were not made or sourced in China.)… because

rocketface                                                                                 This face.

Rocket Boy is nuts about these things. (As was Troll before him, when they were called Chew Eez), It is like crack. There is a whole procedure in place at our house. Rocket Boy and Waldo each get a HeartyHide. Waldo lies down with his and waits. Rocket licks one side of his, then flips it over and licks the other side. When he is finished, Waldo puts his untouched treat in front of Rocket and trades it for Rocket’s licked one. Rinse/repeat. Rocket Boy seldom eats a HeartyHide, he just wants to lick them. He wants to lick ALL of them.

But now, that’s all over. Life as Rocket Boy has known it has changed forever.  How am I supposed to explain that to the little guy? How do I make him understand that Purina is not making HeartyHides any more?  I can’t, he just doesn’t get it. He has eight years of HeartyHide crack addiction under his (figurative) belt, and now Purina just expects him to go cold turkey.

Speed Star 1.1530324  00

“Whatchoo mean der’s no more?”

I saved more than 100 empty boxes so we could take a photo of RB with them and plead our case for coupons from Purina….but I never got around to it. Tonight I stacked them all up and took a photo of Rocket Boy with them with a different aim in mind: to ask Purina how I’m supposed to explain this latest corporate decision to our boy.

He is heartbroken.

He is broken Heart-y-Hide.

They said they’ve been discontinued because of waning sales. Really? Well, you can’t blame me for any of that. I have obviously done my part. And if that’s the case, then why did I make twenty five phone calls to stores around the city today before I was able to find the last 3 boxes in the Greater Cleveland/Greater Akron area? Somebody besides me is buying them. Today, a $3.00 box is trending at $28. a box on ebay, and $15 on amazon, which indicates demand.

I wonder what’s really going on.

Speed Star 1.1536320  00
The last 3 boxes of Purina Busy HeartyHide in the Greater Cleveland/Greater Akron area, ever. And it’s not even his flavor.

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We are always looking for coupons for certain items we purchase for the dogs on a regular basis. If you have Rachael Ray Nutrish coupons,  or Cesar coupons that  you will not be using, please save them for us. Contact me if you have some to send. And if you come across an errant box of Purina Busy HeartyHides in your store, for God’s sake, send them to us!

I also have a wishlist of items that we just can’t afford, but that would make life a whole lot easier.

Things we need Up on the Woof

Posted in Random Woofs | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Trouble in the Dog House


Ever since D and I became involved in rescue, we’ve been fortunate to have a great group of dogs. There is usually a core group of three or four, and they have always been tolerant and accepting of any foster pets or new arrivals. Even when we took in crazy Ben, our core group kept the peace by giving him a wide berth. Except Dillon, who always had to be in the middle of everything, and who tolerated no nonsense from anybody…including me!

PICT0402None of them have ever had obedience training, although I’ve felt like certain of them should have.

We’re having some behavior problems with Waldo that we are completely to blame for, though I point the finger at D, who lets him get away with everything, and won’t discipline him, nor will she let me discipline him. D does a lot of complaining about the dogs’ bad behaviors, or rather, she complains about the girls, which she refers to as my dogs. Only, my girls are good. They mostly follow me around and sit quietly when we are watching TV. It’s her boys that make all the racket; constantly barking for attention or treats…Waldo has even taken to kicking the trash bucket in a demand for food. We call that “beating his drum”. Just to shut them up, or make him stop misbehaving, she reinforces the bad behavior by giving in. I can’t make her understand that she is just making things worse.

It’s a good thing we never had human children together, they’d be delinquents.

At least our dogs don’t fight with each other. They do a fair amount of complaining to us about one another,  but there are seldom, if any, skirmishes. Once in awhile, Waldo will make a gesture at one of the girls,  just to mess with them, but it’s very much a big-brother-pretending-to-be-a-monster thing. “Rahr! I could eat you up if I wanted to, but I won’t because you probably taste like caca! ”

Our most recent core group is made up of five quirky individuals, each with their own unique traits, personality, and, for lack of a better word, weirdness. Dogs have come and gone, and they’ve remained steady…until now.

Suddenly, we have trouble in the dog house. By “dog house”, I don’t mean an actual dog house. Our dogs do not live outside, nor do I believe that any dog should. By dog house,  I mean the three room log cabin we share with our dogs, which is essentially theirs, we just happen to live here too.

Last summer, we took in a new dog. About a month after that, we began having a behavior problem with Maria (of the core group). She is normally a very sweet girl, kind of paranoid, but affectionate and obedient. However, she started being a bully, not to the new dog, but to Taco  (also of the core group.) Maria is 8 years old, Taco is 15. Maria bullies by posturing at close range, cutting Taco off as she is walking, and growling and jumping on her pushing her down. They are the same size, but Taco has a bum knee, and she is also the most passive,  goodnatured dog in our group, which makes her easy to bully.

I won’t stand for bullying. Maria’s behavior is unacceptable.

Our dogs get a lot of one-on-one attention. They get cuddled and kissed, petted and fussed over. They sit in our laps, beside us in our chairs, and sleep in our beds. They are talked to and played with. They are loved, and they know it.

Speed Star 1.1537321  00

But lately, Ri doesn’t want us to give Taco any attention or show her any affection at all. Last week,  when Taco followed me into the bathroom, I picked her up to give her a cuddle. Ri came down the hall to the bathroom, and when she stepped inside and saw Taco on my lap, she had an expression of such fury on her face that I had to laugh. Her eyes absolutely blazed. If she could speak, she’d have shouted “just what in hell is going on in here?!”

I finally consulted with a trainer about how to give Ri an attitude adjustment. I’ve been instructed to give her a ‘time out’ when she picks on Taco. Additionally, I’ve been told to make sure she is fed last, and that she does not pass through any doorways ahead of Taco.

The behavior hasn’t stopped completely, yet, but it’s become less frequent.

Do you have similar troubles in your dog house? If so, how did you deal with it?

 

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We are always looking for coupons for certain items we purchase for the dogs on a regular basis. If you have Rachael Ray Nutrish coupons, Busy Bone coupons, or Cesar coupons that  you will not be using, please save them for us. Contact me if you have some to send.

There are also items that we just can’t afford, but that would make life a whole lot easier.

Things we need Up on the Woof

Posted in Random Woofs | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Wrecked. (The story of a little yellow dog)


I’m taking a little break from my usual type of blog posts tonight to tell you a little story about something that happened to me.

I tied my little boat to the pier in 1982. It was a simple boat, but it was seaworthy. There was nothing special about the rope I used, but it was sturdy. Over the years, the rope held fast, everowboat1n when the water was choppy. But inclement weather wore at the rope, and by the year 2000, it had become so frayed that one day it snapped, and I was cast adrift, my oars still on the dock. I watched the dock get smaller as I was swept farther from shore.

I thought I might be able to swim, but I was so tired, and the water was so rough. So I sat and watched the land shrink in the distance; and soon, I knew that I was too far out to make it back to shore swimming against the current. I was unceremoniously swept out to sea, alone and adrift for weeks. I had nothing to sustain me.

Eventually I began to think about throwing myself overboard to sink peacefully to the bottom of the sea. Every day the water became more and more inviting, beckoningrowboat2 me to jump. I resisted the urge with all my might, but it was all I could think about.

Finally, I washed up on the shore of an island. I was shipwrecked there, alone, for a long time. More than a year. Every minute of every day was spent struggling to survive. It gave me a lot of time to think. I thought about who I had been, and what I thought myself to be.

“I am an artist.” I told the birds and the fish. But they mocked me. “How can you be an artist when you are not producing art?” They asked.

Good point.

“I am a writer.” I said to the crabs scuttling on the beach. They snapped their pinchers crabsonbeachat me. “How can you be a writer, ” they asked, “when you sit there like a piece of driftwood?”

So I began to pick up rocks and bits of detritus, and I formed letters on the sand.

S.O.S.

One day a small plane flew over the island. It circled and came back, so I knew the pilot had seen my message. A couple of days later, it came back again, and this time,  it dropped something. The object fell through the sky and landed on the beach. It was a package. Inside the package was a knife, a saw, and two boards. There was a note inside that said ‘Here are some tools.

I spent the next two months using the tools. I fashioned myself two oars, and when they were finished I bid farewell to the birds and crabs and rowed away from the island toward civilization. It was hard, exhausting work. I ached all over. I stopped often to sleep, and when I slept, I slept deeply.

One night I dreamt I was in a dark little bar with some friends. It was no bigger than a hallway. There was someone I knew there, and she was wearing a gorilla suit. Then the door opened and a little dog walked in. At least,  I think it was a dog. It didn’t look like any dog I had ever seen. It was tiny, and had a very large head. It looked up at me. Way, way up.

“That dog should be yellow.” I said. The gorilla nodded.

When I finally made it back to the mainland, I was a changed person. Everything looked different. “Who am I?” I asked the stranger in the mirror. “I used to be an artist. How can I call myself an artist if I am not making art?”

I said this over and over during the next year. I said it to myself. I said it to my dogs.
But making art seemed too intimidating. One day I saw an article in a magazine about an artist who made paintings the size of a postcard. That seemed almost doable. ‘Small art is better than no art.’ I thought. ‘Maybe I can make small art.’

“How can I call myself an artist if I am not making art?” I asked my lifemate.

“Make art!” She said.

One day while my lifemate was at work, I gathered my art tools. I sat for a long time and just looked at the paper. “What should I paint?” I asked myself. “What do you want to paint?” The paper asked.

The only thing I could think of was the weird little dog in my dream.

So, I painted.

peasm

When my lifemate came home, she saw the painting on the table. “What the hell is that?” She asked.

I smiled. “Exactly. ” I said.

     I’ve been painting my yelodoggie art since 2003, after a long, painful, debilitating depression. At first, the painting had simple titles, but since I love words just as much as art, the titles became playful and clever twists on the Latin name for the domestic dog, Canis familiaris.

     I began writing in earnest in 2006, and have authored six books in the past decade. My books are available from amazon (see the links on the right) and my yelodoggie paintings are for sale in my etsy shop. The originals sell off pretty fast, but there are always prints available, and at a cost that everyone can afford. Selling my books and paintings is how I feed myself and my dogs, so please, take a look.

ydpaintings

I now return you to your regularly scheduled blog.

Posted in Random Woofs | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Only You Can Save Your Pet


Tonight (Feb 4) when I checked for updates on my Facebook page, Lost & Found Ohio Pets, this was one of the most recent posts:

Kane

The most recent update on the post was at the bottom. Kane had been put to sleep at the Lucas County Dog Pound. You’ll note that this notice was shared to my page by the dog’s owner on Feb 2., and that the update was today, on the 4th.

The reason why I am calling your attention to this, is because from the time Kane went missing on the 31st, to the time he was put down at the pound, was 4 days. You’ll also note by the photo, that Kane was a pit bull or pit bull mix, which did not work in his favor. Additionally, you will note that the lost notice says he was wearing a red collar.

Now, I don’t know for sure, but my guess would be that in that short of a time, he arrived at the pound with his collar on. Even if there were no tags attached, it would indicate that he belonged to somebody.

That didn’t save him.

I don’t know how crowded the Lucas County Pound was that day. But even if it wasn’t full, they have to plan for the next day…so the stray, unidentified pets that have been held for three days are on the kill list. If they had to choose…they’d keep the ones that they felt were the “most adoptable”.  Since 75% of the pit bulls who enter shelters are killed…my guess is that ‘pit bull’ is not on their most adoptable list. And how Kane responded in that strange, scary, noisy place would have been another factor in deciding his fate. If he acted afraid, or withdrawn, or agitated, or if he were injured, he was a goner for sure. (Do you know how your pet would act at the dog pound?)

This listing and the outcome breaks my heart.

There are 4 things that might have saved Kane’s life, and that is why I am blogging this. To LET YOU KNOW that ONLY YOU CAN SAVE YOUR PET.

Don’t fool yourself by thinking that your pet will never go missing. Let’s face it: accidents happen. No matter how safe we try to keep our pets, they get out. They run. They explore. If they are fortunate enough to be picked up by animal control, their time is limited. And nothing stands between them and death, except YOU. Give yourself, and them, the best chance of being reunited.

1. License your pet. Today. A license is their ticket home if they end up in Animal Control, and it’s Ohio law.

2. Keep an updated I.D. on your pet at all times (if possible)

3. Microchip your pet – AND DON’T FORGET TO REGISTER THE CHIP with your information. AND DON’T FORGET TO UPDATE your info if you move, or if your phone number changes.

4. If your pet goes missing, there are lots of groups like Lost & Found Ohio Pets that will help you get the word out…but nothing can take the place of your presence. Check your city pound, and your county pound DAILY. You must go there IN PERSON…because the way you describe your pet over the phone may not be the way the person fidofrontcover_thumbwho answered would describe your pet. Take a photo with you. Give them multiple ways to contact you.

These four things can mean the difference between life and death for your pet.

For more tips on what to do when your pet is missing, or how to prepare yourself for the possibility, pick up a copy of Finding Fido. [also available on kindle] Every pet owner should have one. 100% of the proceeds from sales benefit the Beagle Freedom Project.

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