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December 2011
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Swimming and Massage Therapy Helping Chicago Dogs


“We have been able to improve conditions and problems that traditional medicine, acupuncture and chiropractors have had difficulty correcting,” he said. “Massage is more than just petting; it is directed, structured therapy to help alleviate problematic conditions.”

Massage and water therapies are widely recognized for treating people, and now are gaining popularity in the pet arena. Both owners and veterinarians tout their therapeutic benefits.

“It increases circulation, improves healing, and has a lot of benefits in general, “said Dr. Susan Liszewski, veterinarian and owner of TLC First Animal Hospital in Chicago. “Animals have a lot of things that build up over time, a lot of things they are exposed to. It really has a big impact.”

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Doris Day Animal Foundation Provides Grant to Muttville | Seniors for Seniors

Growing up on the Monterey Peninsula, Doris Day became a personal hero of mine long ago, when it came to animal welfare. Her commitment to animals runs deep, and she continues to set an example all these years later.

This month she is back with her first album release in 17 years - "My Heart" - with proceeds benefiting her animal foundation. Past meets present: Miss Day's big heart is showering one of my favorite local nonprofits, with much needed funds. 

DDAFThe Doris Day Animal Foundation, a national non-profit organization founded by the legendary actress and animal welfare advocate, has provided a grant to Muttville, a nonprofit dog rescue organization in San Francisco to help with rescuing senior dogs.

“When we learned about Muttville and its successful rescues of so many senior dogs, we knew we had to help,” Miss Day said from her home in Carmel, California. “We fund other charitable 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations that perform excellent work to help the animals and the people who love them. Muttville is a terrific group of volunteers doing good work, and we’re proud to be able to help.”

This generous grant will underwrite Muttville’s signature adoption program, “Seniors for Seniors,” bringing older dogs and senior citizens together.

In recognizing the special bond between humans and dogs in their “golden years,” Muttville is proud to partner with Miss Day and her Foundation in providing education and material support to make high-quality no-cost adoptions to senior citizens. This grant of $7,000 will allow Muttville to defray the costs of approximately 25 “Seniors for Seniors”adoptions.

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San Francisco Dog Walkers Face New Limits

With so many great pet-centric businesses in San Francisco, I believe this dog walker legislation supports them rather than harms. What do you think?


The ordinance, proposed by Supervisor Scott Wiener, requires dog  walkers to obtain a permit, sets basic standards for training and equipment  used in the job, and requires that no more than eight dogs be walked at one time.

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Acupuncture for Pets | Holistic Veterinarians Help


Hagerstown, MD -- You may have heard about acupuncture for people, but how about for your four-legged friends?

13-year-old miniature Pinscher Alexis is dealing with some major health problems.

She's battling bladder cancer, kidney failure and arthritis, but her owners are trying a different kind of approach to help her conditions.

"My first reaction was let's try acupuncture," Keri Hammel said. "We've actually both have had acupuncture in the past and we try holistic approaches to medicine for ourselves, so we're trying that for our animals as well."

"Acupuncture is a way to take care of the pain in her knee and give her more mobility without causing side effects," said Dr. Randy Barbour, a veterinarian who works with Alexis.

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Minnesota Dog Sledding History | Brainerd Public Library January 20


Charlotte Wolf, musher and veterinary technician, will be speaking about the history of Minnesota dog sledding and demonstrate how the sled dogs are harnessed during a presentation at 10 a.m. Jan. 20 at the Brainerd Public Library.

Wolf’s presentation is the first of several events scheduled at the library as part of the 2012 Kitchigami Regional Library’s Legacy programming.

Wolf is a big supporter of the few dog sled races that run around the country, like the Iditarod in Alaska and the John Beargrease race along the north shore of Lake Superior in Minnesota. Her dreams have been realized and she is as passionate as ever about her dogs, mushing and caring for other sled dogs wherever she goes.

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6 Years Later | Rescued Puppy is Therapy Dog Calendar Pin-up


Had it not been for neighbors, who spotted the severely injured dog lying helplessly in the nearby grass, and Duane Hodges of St. Anthony, who happened by as security officials were deciding what to do with him, Dobie’s story might have been different.

As it is, Dobie, the rescue dog, is now Dobie the certified therapy dog. He’s been faithfully performing his duties since the age of two.

“If we’re going someplace special, he starts singing in the back seat of the car,” said his owner and handler Richard Bartel, also of St. Anthony and a friend of Hodges. “It sounds like sort of a gurgling Tarzan yell. He’s so excited to see his buddies.”

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Dogs Listen in Suffolk Humane Society’s Books and Reading for Kids


As soon as media specialist Kim Richardson gave the OK, the third-grader hopped from his seat to find a book that he thought Pete, a Labrador retriever, would enjoy.

Aiden picked a book about Siberian huskies to share, hurried back to Pete’s side and plopped down next to the dog. In a clear, loud voice, Aiden started reading, while Pete lay down to listen to every word. The student went to turn the first page but stopped suddenly.

“Oops, I forgot to show you the picture,” Aiden said.

He turned the book to Pete to reveal a photo of another dog staring back at him. Sure, the book wasn’t about his breed, but Pete didn’t mind.

He just enjoys listening, and that’s what makes him such a perfect fit for Suffolk Humane Society’s Books and Reading for Kids in Suffolk, or BARKS, program.

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Kids help socialize guide dogs in training


VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) - It was puppy love at two Virginia Beach Schools Tuesday.

Two adorable guide dogs, named Joanie and Julie, spent the day with students. Julie is Brian McCann's guide dog. "I love her to pieces. She's everything to me. I would do anything in the world for her," McCann said.

They share a bond much, more powerful then even most pet owners

McCann added, "People say when she looks at me there's hearts floating above her head." He relies on her to be his eyes and while he couldn't see the impact Julie on the students they visited, he didn't need to.

"I think it's really important to teach them while they are young the importance of the service dogs, McCann said.

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Dog owner gets ‘best Christmas present’ after being reunited with lost pet


Luckily, two fellow Heath walkers spotted the lost dog and took the forlorn pet to Battersea Dogs Home, who used Spike’s microchip to reunite him with his owner the following day.

Mr Woolnough said: “He probably looked quite vulnerable.

“He used to be able to find his way across London. Once, he was waiting for me outside the Whittington hospital in Highgate and managed to find his way back to our home in Crouch End.

“But I was more worried this time because he was getting old.”

He added: “There are a lot of concerned dog owners on the Heath – they act like a real community.

“I am really grateful to the walkers for finding him, I was so relieved when I was reunited with Spike.”

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2nd Annual Pet Blogger Challenge | Why give fearlessly

You've come a long way puppy. What hasn't changed in a year? Cleo, our dog, is still my muse. Maybe I should have called this post, "Why we try to give fearlessly."

IMG_5981Cleo's presence is as strong as ever in our life, but something has changed. She has moved into her golden years. I can't pretend or make up reasons why her back legs are gimpy, or pretend to tease her about getting tired after walking a block. We are experiencing the cruel, and gentle, sides of the aging process for a dog. It's my first time, and it isn't easy.

It is tough emotionally on me, but with Cleo, I owe it to her not to pretend, but to live in the moment with her, and learn as much as I can. My goals are to learn about myself, about the aging process, and about not being afraid to love someone I already know I will outlive. I had these goals last year when I did the first Pet Blogger Challenge - my post from last year’s Pet Blogger Challenge - but this year, these goals are front and center, coloring everything I write, and the blogs, articles and books I'm reading.

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