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May 2011
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July 2011

Fireworks Safety for Pets

Tips to keep your pets safe during summer fun, festivals and fireworks.

In San Francisco we have cool foggy summers, but the cities that make up the Bay Area are typically 10-20 degrees warmer. Therefore it's our job to be smart when we decide to have our furry buddy ride along on errands or longer road trips across the bay. FIDO Friendly magazine has a super useful article on traveling with your dog.

Seven good ideas to consider before you send out those invitations or get in the car

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Independence Day - Greater Meaning for Dogs This Year



Last July 4th we were just focused on savoring the Presidio of San Francisco, and being respectful when we took Cleo to visit it. Who would have thought a year later that a debate is in full swing over whether she can run across Crissy Field again.

Independence for Cleo and all dogs, is something we can't take for granted. Thursday JUNE 30, PHONE, EMAIL OR FAX YOUR MEMBER OF CONGRESS urging them to keep this area and all of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area dog friendly.

Visit: for all the details!

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Operation War Dogs! Rover Oaks Pet Resort Celebrates Independence Day with Pet-friendly Party and Fundraising Drive for US War Dogs!


What better way to celebrate Independence Day and honor those who serve and protect our country and freedom!

Rover Oaks is holding a special event THIS Saturday, July 2, [2:30pm - 4:30pm at Rover Oaks Houston & Katy] to recognize Independence Day and to celebrate everyone's contribution to Operation: War Dogs

To date, the group has raised $4700 for the USWDA and, with your help, they can reach their goal of $6000!  These donations will help provide an abundance of critically needed items including K9 medications, food, grooming tools, bedding and other necessities. 

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Influence Positively Interviews: Dog Trainers Edition

Do you know a dog trainer who is amazing? Tell us! We found many that have previously been highlighted in our Influence Positively Interviews. Today we're highlighting five of our favorites. They are each very different yet clearly share one thing in common, their respect for dogs. They have different training focuses like Dee whose speciality is diabetic alert dogs or Zak whose brilliant at getting your dog to jump through hooped arms.

Simple questions we can all answer. This interview series shares the common qualities we can recognize within ourselves. What is your idea of perfect happiness? If you could come back as a dog or a cat, which one would it be & why? What is your pets most treasured possession? Your proudest achievement so far? Who are your heroes in real life?


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Best Jobs For Dogs - Wet Nose Tutors

Summer activities for kids today include many that can improve self esteem and boost confidence. When I was young summer meant sun burns and staying out of the house and out of trouble, until mom called. Our best days included made up games based on popular TV shows, imaginary treks across the Himalayas and reading tons of books. Today the focus is on not just passing empty summer days, but on taking advantage of the free time to build a child's confidence. 

Peininsula-Humane-Dog Tales Wet Nose Tutors. Remembering my own shyness as a child, it makes me really happy to see cities and counties across the country offering reading programs that encourage children to read aloud to dogs.

San Francisco SPCA began its Puppy Dog Tales Reading Program in June 2007 at the Chinatown Branch of the San Francisco Public Library. As you see often on the Grouchy Puppy Facebook wall, we post links to programs that encourage the use of therapy dogs for reading, and companionship to seniors, vets and those in need of a little quiet love to help heal.

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San Francisco Rescue Groups Walk With Pride

"SF SPCA is proud to join in the SF Pride festivities," says Jennifer Lu, Communications Manager. "Come cheer us on and meet some of our wonderful animals who need loving homes.

Sunday is the 41st San Francisco Pride Parade. The San Francisco SPCA, together with Muttville, Animal Care and Control, Family Dog Rescues, and Saving Grace Rescue will be marching along with proud members of the LGBT community.

The SF-SPCA contingent will be led by their mascots, Ms. Emmy and Big Dog, and is expecting to have 100 to 150 participants, who should be identifiable by their matching SPCA t-shirts and visors. They will be joined by furry friends who know that all people make loving pet parents.

Rainbows. Loving Homes. Big Hearts. San Francisco SPCA will be distributing vouchers for free spay/neuter surgeries at the Spay Neuter Clinic at the Leanne B. Roberts Animal Care Center.

This year the parade starts at 10:30AM at the corner of Market and Beale Streets and marches up Market to 8th Street. Here is all the parade information.

After you've marched, stop by the PAWS Pets Are Wonderful Support beverage booth for a drink! They are running the largest beverage booth at the celebration

PAWS will have an info booth at the Pride Celebration, in order to promote PAWS to the large crowd that attends.  Pride is typically one of PAWS's most successful outreach venues.  Our booth will be on Larkin Street, right in front of the Library.  Be sure to stop by and say hello!

Learn more about these wonderful rescue groups involved this year:

For more information about San Francisco pet adoption and care from SF SPCA, call them at (415) 912-1742, or visit their website at

Muttville Senior Dog Rescue

San Francisco Animal Care and Control

Northern California Family Dog Rescue

Saving Grace Rescue

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Fundraising Benefit for Grateful Dogs Rescue June 25

Saturday June 25 join Give Me Shelter Cat Rescue and Grateful Dogs Rescue for a fun night of food, bingo and karaoke at Henry's Hunan Restaurant in San Francisco.

Tickets are $40.00 each and include an all-you-can-eat buffet, wine, beer and two free bingo cards. There will be a silent auction with some great items you an bid on – all for a great cause. $20.00 of your ticket price will be a be a tax deductible donation.

Purchase tickets in advance! Pay online via PayPal or mail check to PO Box 411013 San Francisco, CA 94141.

LIKE Grateful Dogs Rescue on Facebook to follow their pet adoption efforts, where they will be next and all the information for this event.


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Animal Hoarding Part 3: The Aftermath

Guest post written by Maggie Marton - This is the third part in a three-part series on animal hoarding. Read part one and part two. 

When the first vanload of dogs arrived at the temporary shelter, the volunteers sprang into action. We had spent the morning setting up and arranging crates, organizing intake and vet paperwork, and preparing for the day ahead.

It was stifling outside, a sticky, humid Indiana day. As soon as the dogs arrived, the crates were ferried from the van to the shelter so that none of the small dogs, who looked like min-pin mixes, suffered even more in the heat. Each dog was processed quickly: they received a number, a collar, and a crate. Their ages and breeds were estimated. Then they waited.

The second batch of dogs came in, and all but one flew through the same process. One dog was terrified. When her crate was brought in, she huddled in the corner with her back turned. Of the 13 dogs, she was the only who turned her back on the volunteers. She trembled in her crate. Unable to safely remove her, we waited for the animal control officer.

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Animal Hoarding Part 2: The Rescue

Guest post written by Maggie Marton - part two of three, in a series on animal hoarding.

Last July, nearly 70 dogs were pulled from a trailer in Greene County, IN. The owners claimed that they planned to open a rescue but got overwhelmed – a common claim among animal hoarders. The dogs were in poor health with bacterial infections, fleas, and worms, and days-old puppies suffered from heat stroke.

Volunteers from the Monroe County Humane Association (MCHA), led by CEO Sarah Hayes, removed the dogs from the trailer, provided vetting in a temporary shelter, and then helped the dogs find permanent shelters. In the end, after some of the dogs gave birth, 80 dogs were rescued from the hoarders and nine more were left with the women.

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Animal Hoarding Part 1: What is it?

Guest Post written by Maggie Marton - part one of three, in a series on animal hoarding.

Yesterday, A&E began the fourth season of their hit show Hoarders. In each 60-minute episode, the reality show explores the lives of two hoarders and attempts to help them clean up their homes. Hoarding is a disease characterized by the compulsion to collect and fail to throw away things. Those “things” are unique to the hoarder: some hoard trash, newspapers, dolls, stickers, memorabilia, clothing, you name it.

Others hoard animals.

In fact, almost 250,000 animals are hoarding victims every year, according to The Humane Society of the United States.

Though animal hoarding is often attributed to collecting cats – spawning the “crazy cat lady” stereotype – animal hoards include all types of animals. In one episode of Hoarders, for example, a gentleman hoarded more than 2,000 rats.

In many cases, the hoarder believes they’re helping the animals, when in reality the animals suffer from neglect. Most animal hoarders don’t provide adequate food, veterinary care, or sanitary conditions. “Animal hoarders typically have more animals than they can adequately care for while denying this inability, often despite obvious signs of animal neglect, suffering, and often death,” said Sarah Hayes, CEO of the Monroe County Humane Association, an organization that has assisted on numerous hoarding rescues.

Simply put, animal hoarding is animal abuse. 

Sadly, animal hoarding is a tremedously difficult animal welfare issue to tackle, in part because of the isolation and durress in which hoarders live, and in part because of the prohibitive amount of time, expense, and personnell required to aid an animal hoarder.

“Many communities have few resources to address hoarding, including a complete lack of animal control or an animal shelter,” said Hayes. “This creates an even more difficult circumstance for law enforcement or other animal welfare agencies to intervene before it reaches the level of animal cruelty or becomes a public health risk.”

Hoarding behavior isn’t understood clearly, either. Though it’s considered an obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), research shows that the medication used to treat OCD isn’t effective in treating hoarding. Further, the illness prevents the hoarder from actually seeing the implications of their hoard. They often deny that they can’t care for the animals, even when faced with dead animals located within their home. Their disease prevents them from being able to see, smell, and grasp the condition of their home and their animals. 

As Hayes explained, "Animal hoarding is a multifaceted issue encompassing mental and public health, as well as the health and safety of the animals being hoarded and the hoarder themselves."

The reality is, animal hoarding doesn’t have a simple fix. Often, the fixes are simply patches – helping the animals in desperate need without helping (or even being able to help) the hoarder.

Tomorrow, in part two of this three-part look at animal hoarding, I’ll share my personal experience with a recent rescue of dogs from a local hoarder. 

Image: Monroe County Humane Association



Maggie Marton is a freelance writer, editor, and grammar junkie. She lives in Bloomington, IN with her husband and two darling dogs.

Visit her online at or

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Pedigree Delivers to The Amanda Foundation

One way social media helps animal rescue is through campaigns like the Every Dog Deserves campaign from Pedigree. During June, Pedigree is donating 1 lb of food for every Like, post or tweet. Every social media engagement counts.

Step forward. Pedigree shared this sweet video as it delivers its first 10,000 pound pet food donation to The Amanda Foundation in Los Angeles.

The Amanda Foundation

In Latin the name “Amanda” means worthy of love, so our charity is named not for a person but for our philosophy towards our Dog and Cat companions. They are worthy of our love and protection. For over 30 years our mission has been to rescue as many loyal pals from the shelters and then find them loving new homes. At the same time we endeavor to educate the public about the importance of spay/neuter in order to reduce pet overpopulation.

The Every Dog Deserves Campaign is full steam ahead with its goal of delivering 100,000 pounds of dog food to shelters across the nation. As the June campaign continues, this 10,000 pound food donation is just the start!

Remember that Pedigree is donating 1lb of food for every Like, post or tweet in the month of June. So spread the word!!


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Beneful® Brand Unveils Its First Dream Dog Park! The Second Contest to Win a $500,000 Dog Park Renovation Ends Tomorrow, June 21! Enter NOW Before It's Too Late!

$500,000 Renovation of Atlanta-area Dog Park Inspired by Local Resident and His Dog; Helped Brought to Life by TV Host and Design Expert Jason CameronEvery dog has his day.  And today, Atlanta-area dogs sure had theirs, as its first Dream Dog Park was unveiled by Beneful® brand dog food in Johns Creek, Ga.


Hurry!!! Just a little time left to enter to win a dog park makeover from Beneful.

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Happy Father's Day

Happy Father's Day. We hope you are all having a wonderful day with your canine companions. We will be out walking and in the backyard puttering. Cleo will be cuddling with her PL when she isn't pretending to be a garden gnome. I will be "signing" her paw print on the Father's Day card when PL isn't looking. 


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Why Invest in Grouchy Puppy and our Do-Good Agenda

After our recent Every Dog Deserves Contest,with the winning shelter receiving a $1000 donation from Pedigree, we heard the most wonderful news.

The winning non-profit rescue group was St. Louis Senior Dog Project, and after they won the Pedigree donation, they moved forward on looking for a photographer to take photos of their senior dogs. We all know that a good (flattering) photo goes far when it comes to pet adoption.


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