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Friday, May 05, 2006

Pet Pix By Kids, For the Animal Shelter

Be Kind to Animals Week is coming up, May 7-13, and Miami-Dade Animal Services has been soliciting artwork from school kids on the subject of the human/animal bond, to brighten the hallways.

Take a look at a few of them:

The artists are Samantha Rodriguez(Bathe Animals) and Tanisha Bush (Medical Care), both of Felix Varela High School. Not sure who did "Vaccinate,'' but when I find out, I'll post it.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Read About Brian Kilcommons, Dog Trainer Extraordinaire

In 1996, I interviewed Brian Kilcommons, dog trainer to the stars and the American protege of the late British trainer Barbara Woodhouse, known for her "no bad dogs" philosophy and "Walkies!" rallying cry.

Brian was in Miami promoting his books (Good Owners, Great Dogs; and Good Owners, Great Cats, Warner Books), and giving a seminar at Barry University.

He's way funny and irreverent: witness his response to a woman at the seminar who wanted to know how to stop her neighbor's cats from using her yard as a bathroom.

"Try tobacco dust, which you get at the garden shop," Kilcommons advised. "If that doesn't work, try a feces catapult."

We subsequently became friends. (He and his wife, Sarah Wilson, have a 124-acre spread in Upstate New York where they keep sheep and multiple canines).

Time magazine's May 4 issue has a piece about his new My Smart Puppy DVD.

To read it, click here

To visit Brian's website, click here.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Doggie Light Bulb Jokes!

Thanks to my friend Evy for a much-needed giggle.

How many (insert breed here) does it take to change a light bulb?

1. Golden Retriever: The sun is shining, the day is young, we've got our whole lives ahead of us, and you're inside worrying about a stupid burned out bulb?
2. Border Collie: Just one. And then I'll replace any wiring that's not up to code.
3. Dachshund: You know I can't reach that stupid lamp!
4. Rottweiler: Make me.
5. Boxer: Who cares? I can still play with my squeaky toys in the dark.
6. Lab: Oh, me, me!!!!! Pleeeeeeeeeze let me change the light bulb! Can I? Can I? Huh? Huh? Huh? Can I? Pleeeeeeeeeze, please, please, please!
7. German Shepherd: I'll change it as soon as I've led these people from the dark, check to make sure I haven't missed any, and make just one more perimeter patrol to see that no one has tried to take advantage of the situation.
8. Jack Russell Terrier: I'll just pop it in while I'm bouncing off the walls and furniture. (how true)!
9. Old English Sheep Dog: Light bulb? I'm sorry, but I don't see a light bulb!
10. Cocker Spaniel: Why change it? I can still pee on the carpet in the dark.
11. Chihuahua: Yo quiero Taco Bulb. Or "We don't need no stinking light bulb."
12. Greyhound: It isn't moving. Who cares?
13. Australian Shepherd: First, I'll put all the light bulbs in a little circle...
14. Poodle: I'll just blow in the Border Collie's ear and he'll do it. By the time he finishes rewiring the house, my nails will be dry.

How many cats does it take to change a light bulb?

Cats do not change light bulbs. People change light bulbs. So, the real question is:
"How long will it be before I can expect some light, some dinner, and a massage?"

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Still Looking for Bogey

No news on Bogey, the stolen Golden, yet. Take a look a few postings down for a plea to help return him to his heartbroken family, the Pinder-Quinteros, who live in the Calusa area of Kendall. I'm saying stolen, and not just lost, because it's now clear that's what happened.

Stan Pinder e-mailed the following yesterday:

''I just had a conversation in person for the first time with the former owner of the house that had the garage sale. He was there picking up the last of his things and I got some more details.

''He told me that Bogey was there for awhile and that he gave him some water. The woman that took him was saying that she really liked him and that if no one claimed him, she was going to keep him! He heard his wife say that she can't just take him because he belongs to someone.

''He then left for a while. When he returned is when found out that his wife had turned her attention for a moment and saw the woman driving away with Bogey in her car. It's confirmed in my opinion and his too that Bogey has been stolen for sure.''

A reader e-mailed with a similar sad (and infuriating) story:

''We more than empathize with this family. Our beloved blonde Golden male, Morgan, wandered out the front door when someone left it open, into the street in front of our house. A neighbor saw a woman stop her car and coax him (Goldens don't need much coaxing) into her car. He was on serious medications for a heart ailment and we've never seen him since.

''With all the dogs that are abandoned and in need of loving homes, I will never understand why someone would steal another person's pet. Perhaps this family will be luckier than we were, and get their Bogey back.''

In the name of all things moral and ethical, I sure hope so.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Moonlight and Martinis and Money for Shelter Pets. Sounds Good!

That's the name of an upcoming (and very popular) fundraiser for the Humane Society of Broward County, hosted by its PetSet auxilliary.

It's being held on the 8th floor terrace at the charming and gracious Riverside Hotel on Las Olas Blvd. on Friday, May 19, 6:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m. It overlooks the New River, and is really a lovely spot.

The event will feature a silent auction, cocktails - including a martini bar; you get two drinks free - and delicacies from 3030 Ocean, Johnny V’s, Mancini’s, Japanese Village Steakhouse, Brio Mediterranean Bistro, and other eateries.

Tickets are $25 for PetSetters, $30 for guests, $40 to join and attend. Top Dogs and Pick of the Litter Members are free.

PetSet, according to Cherie Wachter, Broward Humane's spokesperson, "is the new generation of young adults in South Florida dedicated to making a difference in the lives of abandoned animals at the Humane Society of Broward County." Good for them!

To become a member or for more information call 954-266-6817, or click here:

Truly Bizarre: Faking a Dog's Death

Here's an AP story out of Allentown, Pa., April 29, about a lawsuit by pet owners who thought their dog had been euthanized, only to discover her living with someone else. Has anyone ever heard of such a thing? I certainly haven't.

A couple who thought they were watching their epileptic dog being euthanized actually witnessed a simple sedation procedure concocted so the veterinary clinic could later give the canine to another owner, they claim in a lawsuit.

Dana and Gary Ganyer said they cried while watching what they thought was the death of Annie, a 2-year-old German shepherd that had increasingly frequent and debilitating seizures.

But in a lawsuit filed in Bucks County last week, they contend Annie was not euthanized in February 2005 at the Mill Pond Veterinary Clinic in Milford. Instead, the lawsuit says, the dog was given a sedative to make it appear she was dead. The clinic then gave Annie to a new owner, Gene Rizzo of Northeast Philadelphia, who cared for the dog until he had her euthanized on Nov. 2, according to the lawsuit.

“When I heard she was still alive I literally screamed and went into hysterics and I was in shock for three days,” Dana Ganyer said. “My nerves were totally torn up that this vet could do this.”

The lawsuit, which seeks unspecified damages, accuses Mill Pond Veterinary Clinic, Mill Pond Kennels and three of its employees of fraud, negligence and defamation.
A lawyer for the veterinary clinic did not return a call Friday from The Associated Press.

In the lawsuit, the Ganyers say they were told by a former employee of the clinic that they were considered “heartless” and that a meeting was called the morning Annie was scheduled to be euthanized to devise a plan to “rescue” the dog.

The Ganyers contend they are loving owners who decided to put Annie down only after weeks of research and soul-searching.

On June 30, the Ganyers received a call from the former clinic employee, who told them Annie was still alive. A few days later they drove to Rizzo’s home. The Ganyers told Rizzo they were Annie’s rightful owners, but he refused to give her back.
Rizzo said Annie had seizures every few weeks, but between them “she was perfectly normal.”

Annie was euthanized after Rizzo said she lapsed into a coma-like state for two days and his veterinarian told him the dog was “really suffering.”

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Their Golden's Gone, and a Family is Heartbroken

If you've ever had a pet disappear, you know the sick feeling of panic and grief that overtakes you. You imagine the worst, and until there's a happy ending, you can't sleep, eat, or concentrate.

Let's not even think about how you feel if there's no happy ending, which too often means you have no idea what happened to your pet.

I certainly hope the best for the Pinder-Quintero family of Kendall, who are frantic to find Bogey, their 10-month-old red Golden retriever. They believe he was taken from a neighbor's yard sale about 9:30 a.m. Saturday by a woman in a small maroon SUV. Neighbors described her as Hispanic, short and heavyset with short, bleached hair, in her 50s with a mole on one cheek.

According to Stan Pinder, a real estate agent, the family went out for the day Saturday and returned to find the gate open, and shreds of Bogey's red collar, with his tags, on the back porch. Stan thinks that Bogey ate the collar, then took a stroll over to the yard sale.

There, neighbors told him, the woman coaxed Bogey into her SUV and took off.

Stan said his wife, Sandy Quintero, "is sobbing constantly. She adores him.''

Their 15-year-old daughter has been crying on Bogey's pillow.

So far, the family has distributed 500 fliers with Bogey's picture on them. They're offering a $1,000 reward: no questions asked. He is microchipped, so any vet who sees him can identify him

I'm hoping that whoever has Bogey will do the right thing and return him. He's a beautiful boy and his family needs him back.

Call 305-274-7653 if you have any information about Bogey, and click here to see his picture: