I’ll Always Be With You

I’LL ALWAYS BE WITH YOU.

Hopefully, all of you dog lovers are also friends with Winnie the Pooh …

not a dog but with the same endearing characteristics of dogs.

“Winnie the Pooh and Christmas Too” is truly a golden oldie…

a 1991 Christmas television special based on the Disney television series,

and TV Guide ranked the special number 6 on its l0 Best Family Holiday Specials list.

Two days before Christmas, Christopher Robin writes a letter to Santa Claus

, asking for a few presents, and sends the letter off into the wind, but on Christmas Eve,

since Winnie the Pooh did not ask for anything for himself, they retrieve the letter,

and rewrite it to include Pooh’s present, a pot of honey.

They cast the letter intothe wind again, but the wind shifts,

and they are afraid that Santa will never receive the letter.

Pooh decides that they must take things into their own hands

to make sure gifts are delivered.

Pooh sneaks out and delivers Tigger, Rabbit, and Eeyore

a super-bouncer barrel, a bug sprayer, and a mobile home, respectively,

or rather handmade versions of the said items that break apart upon use.

Pooh finally decides to try to deliver the letter to Santa himself,

telling the gang that it would be worth missing Christmas

if he could “bring Christmas” to them. He does not get far, though

, as the wind suddenly takes the letter, so he gives up. At the Christmas tree,

Pooh’s friends bemoan that spending time with him at Christmas

is more important than getting any gifts, just as Pooh reunites with them.

Christopher Robin shows up on his new sled and brings them all the gifts

they had originally asked for. They celebrate together.

One of my very favorite Pooh quotes is “If there is ever a tomorrow

when we’re not together, there is something you must always remember….

you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem,

and smarter than you think….but the most important thing is,

even if we’re apart, I’ll always be with you.”

 

Holiday Traditions Pose Hazards for Our Dogs

Many of our holiday traditions can pose serious threats to the well-being of our pets. As you begin to prepare for the festive season, be aware of activities that can be potentially dangerous to our four-footed friends.

‘Tis definitely the season for overeating, but it is important to keep your dog on a normal diet. Don’t give your pets holiday leftovers, and keep them out of the garbage. Poultry bones can splinter and cause blockages, and greasy, spicy and fatty foods can give your dog indigestion and diarrhea.

If you serve adult holiday beverages, be sure that alcoholic drinks are always out of reach of curious paws. If ingested, your dog can suffer severe damage, and possibly go into a coma, resulting in death from respiratory failure.

Be careful with holiday floral arrangements. Lilies can cause serious digestive problems, and common Yuletide plants such as mistletoe and holly berries can be potentially toxic. Should a dog (or cat) eat mistletoe, there is a strong likelihood that he will suffer gastrointestinal upset. Holly can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and lethargy if ingested.

Traditional tree decorations such as ribbons or tinsel, if ingested, can become lodged in the intestines and cause an obstruction. Take care to prevent your pets from having access to glass ornaments, wires, and cords from holiday decorations. Keep fragile ornaments toward the top if the tree, because, If chewed, such ornaments can damage your pet’s mouth from shards of glass or plastic, while a wire can deliver a potentially fatal electrical shock.

Several popular holiday treats are toxic to dogs. Many candies and other desserts contain the sweetener xylitol which is poisonous to dogs. Even small amounts of xylitol can cause abnormal heart rate/rhythm, and even seizures. Be sure to dispose of candy wrappers carefully, because ingesting aluminum foil or cellophane can pose a choking hazard or cause intestinal blockage.

Be sure to cover the Christmas tree water. Stagnant tree water can act as a breeding ground for bacteria, and if ingested, a pet could end up with abdominal discomfort, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Remember that a dog will quickly know if a gift contains something edible, even if the humans don’t. Ask your guests in advance if there is food inside the presents, and keep them out of paws’ reach.

PLEASE do not even consider giving a puppy as a holiday gift. Usually giving a puppy for emotional reasons turns out badly. Love is not the problem because everyone loves a puppy, but people need to have some basic knowledge about the commitment and responsibility of caring for a pet. Accept the same philosophy as adopting a child. You don’t just give a kid away. Everyone must understand the responsibility of caring for a child, and the same holds true with a dog. A dog is not for Christmas; it is for life, and the holiday season is a busy time. We have all seen the ads depicting adorable puppies with red bows…Adorable? Absolutely. But in real life the holidays are not a great time to introduce a new puppy into the family.

The first few days with a pup are important, and it’s difficult to give a new dog the attention she deserves when everyone’s focus is on the big holiday. Puppies need lots of help at first to understand rules, and in a busy home, visitors are coming and going and doors opened to welcome guests make it easy for a pup to slip out unnoticed.

If you decide to give your family a puppy, please don’t take her home amidst the holiday excitement. Instead, wrap up a collar, dog dish, some puppy toys, and maybe a photo of the pup, and put those under the tree. Then wait until the festivities are over to actually bring the new puppy into your home. This accomplishes the puppy surprise, but allows time to make your home puppy safe, and give your new pup the attention she’ll need to adjust. Most of all, be committed to a LIFE LONG relationship

A New Year’s wish from your dog

As a dog, I live in the now. I don’t celebrate yesterdays and tomorrows, but my humans are excited about what you call the “New Year” and are busy making resolutions. I wish I could convince you to make a resolution to spend more time with me. I know you lead busy lives…have to work, have children to raise, meetings to attend, and too many things to do, so you really don’t have a lot of time to spend with me. It seems that you are usually rushing here and there, without pausing to enjoy the simple joys of everyday life. You look at me, but do you really see me? I am getting older….gray hairs are beginning to show, and my dark brown eyes are getting cloudy.

You have your job, your TV….I have only you. I know you care, even when you are too busy to notice me. I may not understand most of your words, but when I hear my name, I know you mean ME and that I matter to you. When you smile at me, I see love in your eyes. What do you see in mine? A companion who loves you as no other in the world…one who would forgive all trespasses of prior wrong doing for just a few moments of your time. I watch over you in the night and I comfort you when you feel bad. I would do anything for you. I wish you would slow down, to be with me. I’ve watched when you have been saddened by what you see on that screen where you spend so much time…news about a friend or a dog passing. Sometimes two-legs die young and so do four-legs…. and sometimes so suddenly that it brings tears to your eyes. Remember I don’t live in yesterdays or tomorrows….today is our day. I am aging, but do you even notice the grizzled muzzle and cataract clouded eyes, or the fact that I move slower and sleep more?

I may not be here tomorrow, and you will shed the water from your eyes, and you will be angry at yourself that you did not have “just one more day” with me, but we have today, so slow down, sit here next to me on the floor, and look deep into my eyes. Stroke my fur and let us look deep into one another’s eyes, and talk.

I may tell you something about the fun we’ve shared through the years….and the tough times too, or I may tell you how thankful I am that you decided to have me in your life. I won’t dwell on my inability to run as fast as I used to, or bound up the stairs in a flash. I am a dog, very different from you… but my heart is filled with love for you. I do not think of you as a dog on two feet…I know who you are, and I love you unconditionally. Now come and sit with me on the floor. Enter my world for just awhile, and let time slow down. Look deep into my eyes, and whisper in my ears. Speak with your heart, with your joy, understanding that the resolution that would mean the most to me is for you to realize that life is, oh, so very short, so we need to live and love in the NOW.

A new year, a fresh start, 12 new months of choices to make. Cheers to a new year and a chance to get it right. 2018 is the beginning of what each of us chooses it to be. Let’s choose to live and love in the NOW and throughout the year. HAPPY NEW YEAR!

 

 

The Perfect of Christmas

If you are considering buying a puppy for a Christmas gift, we urge you to think carefully before impulsively bringing a companion animal into your home. A pet is a living being and involves long term adult commitment. A dog is not a toy, not a disposable item to be discarded when he becomes inconvenient, or the kids lose interest in him. Please avoid the heartache of a poorly thought out pet purchase, and don’t let the kids con you into a decision you will regret. The introduction of a pet into a household should be a total family decision that has been discussed, planned for, and researched before the purchase or adoption.

“The perfect Christmas gift” illustrates how a well intention, impulse purchase can bring heartache to both the family and the animal:

“I am a dog with a story to tell… I was unlucky enough to be born in a filthy wire cage, in a dreadful puppy mill. and was soon sold to a pet store. I was one of those “designer dogs—all of the rage,” and was bought for a Christmas present for the kids, but that didn’t last long before I hit the skids. At first everything was fine; I lived in a nice house and played with the children….it was a great life for awhile. Then things changed, and I was thrown outside to live in the yard. Maybe it was because I shed a little, and once I piddled on the rug, but no explanation or reason was given why. When the sun came up, I barked all day, but no one ever came out to play. Soon they said I I was too big for the house, and too much trouble to train, so I just sit at the end of a chain, day after day, year after year. The seasons change….I freeze in the winter, and swelter in the summer…my joints are sore, and my eyes don’t see as well any more. My fur is matted and provides a home for the fleas. I bark and I cry; I cry and I bark….it is a sad existence. Sometimes I have water….sometimes I don’t. I hope that you think of me when you see a dog on a chain and know that dog is lonely, hurting, and in pain. He was probably that perfect Christmas gift too, now forgotten and alone. Perhaps you could stop awhile and pat him on the head, or just sit beside him and talk to him , offering him a friendly word. It’s sure to be a kindness that he may not have experienced for awhile.. I guess some folks just don’t understand that a dog is not for Christmas….he is for life.”

If you have discussed, and planned for adding a dog to your heart and home, and are willing to make a long term commitment, spending a good amount of time and energy with the dog and have enough space and money to properly care for his needs, go to your area shelter or rescue group and talk to them. They can help you choose the best dog for your situation. (Do NOT buy from a pet store…you will be supporting the puppy mill industry.)

You will never know the joy that dogs bring to the world until you have one of your own. They really do deserve the title of “man’s (and woman’s) best friend. They are loyal, intelligent, devoted and affectionate, and are known to improve both our physical and mental health. Dogs keep a lonely night, less lonely; they treat us like celebrities; they make us smile; they teach us the meaning of unconditional love. A faithful dog will play with you….or cry…he’ll gladly starve to stay with you nor ever question why, and when you’re feeling out of sorts, somehow he’ll understand. His blind, implicit faith in you is matched by his unconditional love.

“Dogs have given us their absolute all. We are the center of their universe. We are the focus of their love and faith and trust. They serve us in return for scraps. It is without a doubt the best deal man has ever made. ” (Roger Caras)

Tis The Season for Love and Joy… And Debt

For many Americans, the quality of Christmas is determined by gifts It is an undeniable fact that for our society as a whole, gifts are the central feature of the holiday season, with retailers pressuring us to spend more than we can afford by promoting the ‘buy now, pay later’ philosophy, piling on credit card debt. In a recent survey, many said they would prefer to skip Christmas altogether because the holiday season brings so much financial pressure. How sad….we need to learn that things will never make us happy, and Christmas is not about accumulating more “stuff, ” for either our two-legged friends or our four-legged companions.

According to the American Pet Products Association, pet caregivers are spending more than $60 BILLION dollars on their pets this year. Chris Riches of Dailymail says that pets are more popular than relatives at Christmas with more than half planning to spend more on their animal companions than each of their own family members. Naturally every pet supply outlet is taking advantage of the impulse buyer, tantalizing dog lovers with toys, but remember that there is NO agency overseeing the dog toy market , and many of them are not good for your canine. With the market flooded with cheap imports, it’s BUYER BEWARE. Double check…and then check again to make sure a toy is non-toxic and safe. Squeaky toys are a favorite for almost all dogs, but it is easy for dogs to choke on them, often causing a blockage that requires surgery. Dogs love rawhides, but I recommend that you NEVER give rawhides to your dog! Consider toys made of very hard rubber which are safer and last longer, and remember your dog is not impressed with expensive stuff…. They possess the spirit of Christmas every day of the year, realizing that it is not the Christmas wrapping or the gifts…it is about joy and love, and they are eager to share those attributes with you every day of every year. . However, a gift or two would be appreciated, so please choose products made in North America or Europe over those mass-produced and imported from other countries where safety standards are almost non- existent. Avoid the cheap, stinky latex toys, and Inspect all toys for loose parts or pieces that might easily break off. Don’t give children’s toys to dogs, because they could chew off and choke on the eyes and noses of stuffed animals.

One of my favorite toys is the Kong. Kong toys are uniquely shaped, extraordinarily strong, rubber toys with hollow centers, and they have an unpredictable bounce that appeals to almost all dogs. This toy can be used for therapy, boredom, separation anxiety, other behavior problems, and just plain fun. A Kong can be stuffed with almost any kind of food your dog likes…mix some of his meal with a little canned dog food, yogurt, peanut butter…combinations are endless, and if you freeze them , they will occupy your dog for extended periods of time.

Kyjen Pet Products has a great assortment of quality dog dogs….the Squeaker Mat Toy has multiple squeakers that have the squeakers sewn inside, and doesn’t have any stuffing to be swallowed when your dog eventually rips it open.

The Nylabone Durable Dental Dinosaur and the Nylabone Dura chew Wishbone are great gifts for serious chewers. They have interesting shapes and raised bristles to help clean her teeth.

The Cuz is an ingeniously designed, natural rubber ball with feet…but that’s not its only special feature. It squeaks…and the squeaker is built into the Cuz so that it won’t fall out. It is a well-made toy by JW Pets, a U.S. based company that claims their ideas are l00% homegrown in the USA. They also have a large assortment of other creative, well-made toys, including Cuz Tails, which has a soft, squeaky tail that can be bounced, tugged and fetched. JW dog toys are higher quality than most of the toys you find in the big box toy departments.

Remember that no toy is indestructible, and as long as the toy industry is an unsupervised playground, it is the responsibility of the caregivers to keep their eyes on the ball, the stuffing, and the squeaker.

Dogs help us to better understand what Christmas is truly about, and even though they cannot speak in our language-or perhaps it is that we cannot speak in theirs-we know that dogs realize the true meaning of Christmas. Have a loving , joyous, debt-free holiday season!

It’s Beginnning to Look Like Christmas

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas everywhere you go,  and  the gamut of holiday activities –baking, shopping,  gift wrapping, parties, and house guests—is in full swing.  Busy, busy, busy with many extras vying for your time.   As schedules become frantic, how do our pets fare?  What happens to the daily walk, the game of fetch, and  the quiet snuggle with a favorite human companion?   Taking care of your dog in the holiday season  requires a bit of  caution, because with all the interesting foods and decorations in our homes, there are many hazards.

  • The traditional Christmas tree needs to be placed in an area where it is not likely to be knocked over, and secured well.   There simply are no perfectly pet-safe ornaments, but  glass ones, or easily broken ones should be placed high on the tree.  Ornaments with hooks to attach them to the tree often fall from the tree, and pets may catch their mouths on them , or swallow them.
  • Most dogs (and cats)  are attracted to tinsel, and may try to eat the stuff  which can slice up their gastrointestinal system.   Sweep up the pine needles that drop  to prevent ingestion of needles which  can cause gastric irritation.  Turn the lights on only when you are home because risk is always there with a live tree.   Do not allow your pet access to the tree water to drink.
  • Dogs love to investigate and most don’t understand that the presents are not chew toys.  Inquisitive dogs may tear open wrapped gifts,  and ingest decorative ribbons or strings (not to mention that gifts can be destroyed by a playful pet).  It is wise to limit unsupervised  access to the area.
  • During the holiday season, many lights are displayed, and, with these lights,  come electric cords.  Curious pets can find these cords interesting and fun , resulting in electric shock or burns.
  • Don’t leave lighted candles unattended.  Dogs may burn themselves or cause a fire if they are knocked over.  Be sure to use appropriate candle holders, placed on a stable surface, out of paws’ reach.  And if you leave the room, put the candle out!  Essential oils are highly toxic and should be also kept out of reach.
  • Fatty, spicy, and no-no-human foods such as chocolate, or anything sweetened with xylitol,  as well as bones should not be fed to your four-legs.  Ingestion of  high- fat foods  or other holiday foods such as yeast breads or fruit cakes with currants and raisins can result in serious gastrointestinal upset.  No alcoholic beverages should be left where an inquisitive dog can reach them.  Make sure your dog doesn’t have access to the trash where you throw away the string or paper used to wrap the turkey or ham!
  • If you have house guests, remind them to keep all their meds zipped up and out of reach.  Handbags typically contain many items poisonous to dogs, including prescription meds, pain meds such as Tylenol, sugarless chewing gum, asthma inhalers, cigarettes, coins, and hand sanitizers.

Veterinarian Pamela Perry  emphasizes that the holiday season is stressful for both humans and canines.  “Your dog should have access to a quiet room where he can retreat if he becomes overwhelmed with all the hustle and bustle.  To keep his stress levels low, maintain his routine as much as possible.  Spend a few minutes –one-on-one  several  times a day, so he knows you  haven’t forgotten him.  It is likely that it will lower your stress level too.”

Dogs are treasures and are worth  making a few compromises and taking a little extra care to ensure a  happy, safe holiday  for everyone.

Christmas Puppies For Sale!

Most of us are busy writing our lists and will soon be checking them twice. We urge you to think carefully before you give a dog as a Christmas gift. Animals come with responsibilities, and the person receiving them may not be prepared to adequately provide for the animal’s care. When the holidays end, the kids go back to school, and the adults go back to work, what happens to the puppy?

A puppy is not a stuffed toy that can be tossed on the shelf when the newness wears off; the reality is that a pet is a serious long term responsibility and the decision to include a dog into any home should come only after careful consideration.

Please don’t just “get a puppy for the kids,” unless you are prepared for a lifetime commitment! And don’t fall for all the slick marketing techniques from the pet stores, and on- line-sites. Their motivation is not your happiness or the welfare of the animal; it is financial gain, as illustrated in this poem by Shannon McClure.

Adopt Don't Shop

Adopt Don’t Shop

 

Excerpt From – Merry Christmas From Ye Olde Puppy Shoppe!

By: Shannon McClure

We love our puppy customers.
They’re our #1 bread and butter,
Especially right now at Christmas time
With their MasterCards all a-flutter.

Oh sure, they’ve heard about puppymills
They don’t live in a cave.
The tree-huggers dreamed THAT whole thing up.
They’re really quite depraved!

All OUR pups came from “Local Breeders”.
These signs around TELL you so;
We paint em up and hang em high
Cause we want you to know!

We don’t put a price on honesty,
But this pup will cost eight hundred dollars.
You don’t think that we make the big bucks
Selling fish food and martingale collars !

But back to our Christmas Greeting
And why we wish you all Good Cheer;
You see, you are $pecial folks to us
At this festive time of year.

We love you cause you just don’t care
You buy it because you want it.
You can lay your cash on OUR counter, ma’am,
If you’ve got it, you OUGHT to flaunt it !!!

We love the things you DON’T ask !!!
It makes our job so easy.
If you saw the sights behind the scene
You’d probably get quite queasy.

You’ll never see the breeding dogs
Who suffer on the wire,
Or pups die of hypothermia
When their truck gets a flat tire.

We’ll keep you from our back room too,
And put a padlock on the freezer.
Those tiny puppies stiff and cold
Would not be a crowd pleaser.

We hope you have a vet you like
That pup’s probably gonna need him.
Ivomec wears off in thirty days
That’s how long we’ve guaranteed him !!!

Who cares when you get that blue slip home
And find out that it wasn’t true.
Your Local Breeder’s way out in Kansas ?
HO! HO! HO! That joke’s on you !!!

We’ve got the carols playing
And a Santa, for good reason;
We’re all scrubbed up and lookin’ good
So you’ll make our Christmas season.

Christmas a Time of Love

Christmas is a time to pause, count our blessings, and reach out to family, friends, our beloved companion animals, and those less fortunate.  IT IS A TIME OF LOVE, but it is also a time to avoid holiday hazards with pets:

  • Foods of the season may be dangerous even in small portions. Keep all bones out of reach…they can easily damage the digestive tract. Keep pets away from chocolate, alcoholic drinks, grapes, raisins, and onions (or dips and dressings that contain onions.) Garlic, fatty skin from the turkey, many spices and bones may do more than just sicken your pet. And never give your pet any yeast dough when you are baking. Coffee, coffee grounds, or coffee beans can also be harmful.
  • Many holiday plants, including lilies, holly, Christmas cactus, mistletoe, and poinsettias, are poisonous if eaten, and many florists now use cocoa mulch which is extremely toxic in potted plants
  • Secure all extension cords to prevent pets from chewing on them, and keep all candles out of reach of curious paws. Never leave lit candles unattended with pets around.
  • Make sure your tree is solidly secured, and keep tree preservatives inaccessible to pets—they are toxic. Keep the area under the tree free of pine needles which can puncture intestines if swallowed.
  • Select your decorations carefully.  If you have breakable glass bulbs and other decorations, place them out of reach of curious paws. One of the biggest hazards is tinsel which, if ingested, can cause serious problems which may require surgery. Avoid hanging edibles on your tree. Popcorn strings should be avoided because most dogs will eat both the popcorn and the string.
  • Provide a quiet, safe place for your pets to retreat if they feel stressed during your holiday festivities.
  • As you spend time with your family, friends, and furbaby, don’t be too busy to include something for a less fortunate dog…you can do this any time of year, but please do something to make the holiday more special for a lonely dog.. or two..or three!  Companion animals play important roles in the lives of the people who love them, but sometimes the elderly or ill have trouble providing essential pet care. Perhaps you could offer to assist—walk the dog, help with grooming or feeding, pick up supplies, or drive her to the veterinarian. Your local rescue group or shelter always appreciates volunteers. There are dozens of things you can do…contact your local organization to get specific suggestions as to how you can brighten a lonely dog’s life…and donations are always welcome…money, towels, food, blankets, or equipment…all shelters have wish lists.

Tis the day before Christmas and all through the house,

the puppies are squabbling over an old rubber mouse.

The stockings that hung in neat little rows boast obvious holes in all of the toes.

The tree purposely placed way up high leans badly and looks ready to die.

I catch them and hold them, “Be good,” I insist.

They lick me, then run off to see what they’ve missed.

As I watch them, the thought comes to me that they’re the spirit that Christmas should be!

Perhaps children and puppies can show us the way,

and teach us the joy that comes each new day!

Could they convince us of the message sent from above

That Christmas is kindness and compassion…

CHRISTMAS IS LOVE!!!

LAST YEAR’S CHRISTMAS GIFT

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, and humans are busily making their lists. To many people, a puppy is the perfect symbol of the true spirit of Christmas… innocence, exuberant energy, wonderment, and unconditional love. And what young child doesn’t beg for a puppy?  Indeed advertisers and marketing experts have capitalized on this idea, and movies and TV have given us the idea that puppies make the perfect, heartwarming holiday gifts. They count on the flood of emotions and spur impulse purchases.  But think of what happens to most of the toys and gifts that start out under the Christmas tree… by Valentine’s Day, most of them have been shelved or broken or traded or forgotten. The excitement wears off, and the once exciting toy becomes something to use, use up, and then discard in favor of something newer.

A living puppy is not a Christmas toy, and the reality is that there is an influx of pets that were given as gifts showing up at shelters around February because the recipients of these wonderful living gifts discover that they really weren’t prepared for a pet in their lives. There are dozens of reasons, but the bottom line is that thousands of puppies wind up with rescue groups or just abandoned a few months after Christmas. If you are considering a puppy as a gift, unless you are TOTALLY committed to the LIFETIME care of an animal, we suggest that you reconsider. Pets are living beings that require daily care, plus expenses for food, obedience training and vet bills, and “pets as playthings” is the wrong message to send to our children!

 

LAST YEAR’S CHRISTMAS PRESENT

T’was the night before Christmas, and all through the house,

not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,

in hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there.

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,

with no thought of their dog filling their heads.

And mama in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap knew he was cold,

but didn’t care about that.

Then out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,

I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.

Away to the window I flew like a flash,

figuring the dog was free and into the trash.

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow

gave the luster of midday to objects below,

And what to my wondering eyes should appear,

but Santa Claus—his eyes filled with tears.

He unchained the dog, once so lively and quick….

last year’s Christmas puppy, now thin and sick.

More rapid than eagles he called the dog’s name,

and the dog ran to him, in spite of his pain.

Now, Dasher, now, Dancer, now Prancer and Vixen…

on Comet, on Cupid. On Donner and Blitzen!

To the top of the porch… to the top of the wall;

let’s find this dog a home where he’ll be loved by all.

In an instant I was sad and ashamed and filled with fear,

for Santa had made one thing quite clear:

The gift of a dog is not just for the season.

We had gotten the pup for all the wrong reasons.

In our haste to find the kids the perfect gift,

there was an important fact we had missed.

A dog should be family, and cared for the same;

you don’t give a gift, then put him on a chain.

And I heard Santa exclaim as he drove out of sight,

“You weren’t given a gift! You were given a life!”

I am a forever dog…not an “until” dog.  I’m not an “until you get bored with me” dog.    I’m not an “until you have a baby” dog.   I’m not an “until you have decide to move” dog. I’m not an “until you have no time” dog.  I’M A FOREVER DOG  If you  can’t give me your forever, then I’m not your dog.  IT’S REALLY THAT SIMPLE.

 

Seasons Greetings

CHRISTmas is a  time of friends and family…a time of festivity, and also a holy time of year when we celebrate the birth of Jesus.  However, for homeless dogs it can be a time of loneliness and fear.  There are needy dogs everywhere, and there are many ways in which you can show kindness to them: 

Your local rescue group or shelter always appreciates volunteers.   Most of them are underfunded and understaffed, and appreciate volunteers.  There are dozens of things you can do, from dog walking to kennel cleaning.   Some shelters have foster programs that encourage volunteers to take a dog into their home for a little special attention.  If you are having a quiet holiday at home, this might be an opportunity to share your love with a dog. Since most groups are limited in the number of dogs they can save because of space limitations, by temporarily offering to care for an animal in your home, you are giving a rescue dog valuable time to find a permanent home.   If you aren’t ready for such a step, contact your local organization to get specific suggestions as to how you can brighten a lonely dog’s life.   Donations are always needed.  Be it money, towels, food, blankets, or equipment, all shelters have needs. Call to see what’s on the group’s wish list.

There are dogs right in your own neighborhood who are not enjoying a good life.  Without being judgmental, perhaps you could suggest ways to make life better.  Some caregivers are simply unaware that their dog needs more attention and care, and sadly some people still believe that dogs should live outside, and they keep their pets tied up so they can’t escape the yard or dig up the lawn.  Chaining is a major problem because the practice is inhumane to the animals, and also creates a safety risk to the community  because the isolation endured by a chained dog can turn an otherwise friendly and happy dog into a neurotic, anxious, aggressive animal.    Perhaps you could volunteer to take the dog to obedience classes if his behavior is the main reason they keep their dog outside.  Make every effort to have a positive impact on your neighborhood by educating people about the dangers of chaining a dog, and if you can’t convince them to find a place indoors, you can at least offer to walk her, or simply spend some time with her.

Companion animals play significant roles in the lives of the people who love them, but sometimes the elderly or ill have trouble providing essential pet care.  If you see a neighbor in need, offer to assist—walk the dog, help with feeding, or grooming , pick up supplies or pet food,  or drive her to the veterinarian.

If you see a dog that is neglected or abused, it is your responsibility to report it to the authorities.  Don’t expect “someone else” to get involved.  YOU need to report it, and then follow up to be sure that appropriate action is taken.  Your action may make the difference between life and death for the dog!

At this wonderful  time of caring and sharing, don’t be too busy to include something for unwanted, unloved animals.  Please do something to make this holiday a little more special for a few lonely, forgotten animals.