Archives for Stray Dog category

When I Die

Ok, this brought tears to my eyes:

Makes me think of our three little girls, Pebbles, Cubby, and Skittles, who have all gone over the rainbow bridge.


Feb 08, 2012 | Comments are off | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Holistic, Home Health Care for Dogs, Stray Dog

Heroic Dog Saves Owner From Abusive Spouse – Incites Change in Shelter Policy

Hello Everyone,

I just had to share this story from
When the Rose Brooks Center for women took in a domestic violence victim and her heroic dog, they bent the rules in doing so, setting the wheels in motion for a much needed change in policy.
Like most battered women’s shelters, the Rose Brooks Center did not accommodate pets. But this was no ordinary dog: when her boyfriend tried to kill the woman with a hammer, her fearless Great Dane jumped in the way, laying over her body and taking most of the blows until the man threw both of them out of a second story window. The dog suffered multiple broken bones in the attack, sparing his owner’s life in the process.

Despite their injuries, the woman was able to escape with her dog, and eventually made her way to the Rose Brooks Center. When they offered her a bed and told her no pets were allowed, she was defiant, and for the first time in its history, the shelter overlooked regulations and allowed the dog to stay.

That decision would eventually lead to a permanent change in policy. Knowing that forty percent of battered women with pets stay in abusive relationships in order to protect their pets, the center’s chief executive officer, Susan Miller, said adding a pet-friendly wing would remove a serious barrier that women face when attempting to leave an abusive relationship. Miller was the one who had ultimately made the call to admit the woman and her dog.

“They provide so much comfort, and to have to leave that pet behind is so heartbreaking,” Miller said. “It has become abundantly clear that the incredible therapeutic benefits that pets can have on a family greatly outweigh the cost and inconvenience of housing them.”

The center is investing $140,000 in renovations that will add seven kennels, a walking trail and pet-friendly play area. Future victims of abuse in the Kansas City area will no longer have to choose between personal safety and the well-being of their four-legged loved ones, a change that shelter officials believe will save lives.


Jan 13, 2012 | Comments are off | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Home Health Care for Dogs, Stray Dog

Neuter That Boy and Spay That Girl

Hi to All,

This very cute 2 minute music video is a fun way to get the message out that when you spay or neuter your dog, you are helping to end the problem of unwanted pets.


Jan 09, 2012 | Comments are off | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Stray Dog

A Dog’s Purpose – book review

Hello to All from San Antonio,

I recently finished reading two novels A Dog’s Purpose and Emory’s Gift by W. Bruce Cameron.

Although I preferred the first, I would recommend both books to anyone who just enjoys reading stories about animals, and who can entertain the idea that spiritual energy never dies, but carries on regardless of the physical body.

For this post I am focusing on A Dog’s Purpose. This is a thoroughly enjoyable book and a fast read, where the story follows the spirit of a dog through four lifetimes. The first experience is as a dog named Toby, a feral mixed-breed, who learns some life lessons from his mother that serve him throughout the other lifetimes. The second lifetime is Bailey, a pure-bred golden retriever who becomes a beloved pet and is completely and utterly devoted to his boy Ethan. The third is Ellie, a female German Shepherd, who is trained to serve as a search and rescue dog and carries out her missions with great courage and enthusiasm. The final experience is Buddy, a black Labrador, who once again becomes a beloved pet and companion.

I loved how the author, W. Bruce Cameron, builds on each lifetime with the lessons learned from each of previous ones. The story is told entirely from the dog’s viewpoint and in the dog’s voice, so there is much editorializing about cats, human behavior, the surroundings and situations, and all things important to a dog. It is clear the author has great knowledge regarding dog behavior, training methods, and dog welfare.

In full disclosure, if you choose to purchase either A Dog’s Purpose or Emory’s Gift through any of the links I have provided, I will receive an affiliate commission from


Dec 30, 2011 | Comments are off | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Home Health Care for Dogs, Stray Dog

San Antonio Area Foundation Animal No Kill Initiative

Greetings All,

It is another blistering hot day here in San Antonio. They are promising us some rain this weekend from Tropical Storm Don, so we just have to wait to see if it really happens!

Rick and I ran into Gavin Nichols at the Pet Expo this last Saturday. Gavin and I worked together for a long time at H.E.B., but he now works for the San Antonio Area Foundation. Specifically, he is the Program Officer for the Animal No Kill Initiative.

If you are not familiar with this organization, here is an overview from their website:
“For over 45 years, the San Antonio Area Foundation has connected donors of all backgrounds with the causes they care about most for the betterment of San Antonio and the surrounding region. The Area Foundation provides a highly personal approach to giving, offering a variety of giving tools to help people achieve their charitable goals.

Established in 1964, through a trust created in memoriam to San Antonio business leader and philanthropist Nat Goldsmith, the Area Foundation has significantly enhanced the quality of life of our community by:

•providing outstanding service to donors
•producing significant asset growth
•strengthening community collaboration
•managing an responsible grants and scholarship program.

From scholarships to programs on animal welfare issues, support for programs assisting wounded military heroes to senior social and health care programs, the San Antonio Area Foundation understands and supports solutions to our community’s growing challenges. Community-based grant applications are offered in several different program areas in an annual cycle. Donor‐advised fund grants are distributed throughout the year. The Area Foundation has given more than $190 million in grants and scholarships in San Antonio, Bexar County and around the globe.”

A primary component of the No Kill Initiative is the Talk About It! campaign, which is a bilingual, multi-channel grassroots effort, aiming to make San Antonio a No Kill community by promoting spay/neuter, adoption and responsible pet care. The program is a collaboration of the City of San Antonio, Alamo Area Partners for Animal Welfare (AAPAW), the San Antonio Area Foundation Consortium of Partners and animal welfare organizations.

To support this crucial San Antonio community effort, you can click here to donate, fill in the amount, and select Animal No Kill Fund in the Designation drop-down menu.


Jul 29, 2011 | Comments are off | animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Stray Dog

Daisy Cares

Hello to everyone,

This post is especially for those in the San Antonio area.

Rick and I discovered an organization this weekend at the Fest of Tails event at McAllister Park, Daisy Cares, that is doing great things for the community.

Following is the “about us” from their website:
DaisyCares is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation created to provide pet food and medical care to needy pets by providing assistance to their owners.

The organization was launched in April 2010 by Ami Gordon in honor of her beloved yorkie, Daisy. DaisyCares was created to give back the gift of life that Daisy received, and to provide hope to all needy pets.

DaisyCares has founded the DaisyCares Veterinary Care Program for applicants who meet qualification. Veterinary care grants are subject to availability of funding.

Additionally, DaisyCares has partnered with the San Antonio Food Bank to create the DaisyCares Pet Food Program. DaisyCares Pet Food Program for families who might otherwise be faced with the decision of abandoning or surrendering their family pets.

All donations to both programs are tax-deductible.


Mar 24, 2011 | Comments are off | animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Stray Dog

Working with an Animal Communicator – session 2

Hi Everybody,

We had our second session with Val Heart recently, so I wanted to tell you all how that went.

But first, I really should give you an update of what we’ve noticed since our last session (see my last post for a summary). Roxie and Gypsy have not once gotten into a fight, and our whole household seems calmer and more at peace. We have made a concerted effort to be as firm with Roxie as we are with Gypsy, and we are more consistent when enforcing the rules. I was gone to the Seattle area for a week, so it was up to Rick to keep up the work with them while I was gone. He specifically worked on the “place” command, where we have Gypsy and then Roxie go to their blankets when someone comes to the door. We still have work to do, but progress is being made.

Another interesting thing we noticed is when we took them to our vet to get their periodic chiropractic adjustments. In the past, Roxie has been a real mess, just anxious and yippy and tense. Dr. Maria made a comment that Roxie was calmer than she had ever been for an adjustment, which of course makes the adjustment easier and more effective. I was also working on my own energy, to be mindful and remain calm, instead of being worried about Roxie and Gypsy’s behavior.

With our second session, we gave Val an update, and then Val focused in on some specific questions we had for Roxie and Gypsy. As I mentioned in my previous post, this part takes a bit of faith, but what Val told us made sense.

Gypsy has a broken tail and scars on her lips. We know she was homeless for a while before she was rescued, and we’ve always wondered what that was like, and whether her broken tail caused her any problems. According to Val, Gypsy does not have any concern about her broken tail, but being homeless was a scary thing. Val told us that Gypsy seems to have a lighter energy and is more at peace than the last time. Apparently, Gypsy is more than happy to relinquish the job of pack leader to Rick and myself. (We just had to laugh at this, but the good news is Gypsy thinks we are doing our job now!)

For Roxie, we were concerned her vision may be failing, because of some difficulties she has in jumping in our vehicle and going in and out of the doggie door at night. It seems she does have an issue with night blindness and she also has pain in her back and hips. Val suggested we get her a ramp or some stairs to help her get into the truck, and to provide more light for the doggie door.

Also for Roxie, we wanted to know why she feels the need to bark at anything and everything. Val’s answer: it is mostly anxiety, but it’s also fun and Gypsy has given Roxie the task of being the pack “alerter”. So, Val gave us some suggestions in dealing with the barking. For example, during meal times when they hear something and tear off, Val suggested we make a point of leaving the table to check out what they are hearing, acknowledge them doing their job in alerting us, and then ask them to go back to their “place” and settle down. She did say we should remain calm and assertive, and not “bark back” at them.

The last thing Val discussed with us was some nutritional suggestions. Roxie and Gypsy get quite the variety in their diet, and they both eat their food with gusto. The only things she felt were lacking were trace minerals for both Roxie and Gypsy, and blue-green algae for Roxie.

We will have a third session with Val in three weeks, so I’ll sign off until then. I appreciate hearing from you, so feel free to comment on this.


May 17, 2010 | 1 | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Holistic, Home Health Care for Dogs, Homemade Dog Food, Stray Dog

Puppy Mills – a national disgrace, and what we can do to help

Hello Everyone,

I have to tell you about a book I just finished A Rare Breed of Love. Jana Kohl is the author, who tells the story of Baby, a white poodle rescued from a California puppy mill by a woman Jana named “Drive-by Angel”. Identified only by the number 94 tatooed in her ear, the little dog had outlived her usefulness as breeding stock and was to be put down by the breeder. Drive-by Angel took the dog home, named her “Baby” and proceeded to prepare her for adoption. A couple of days after bringing her home, Baby jumped off a sofa and shattered her left front leg. Baby, being overbred, denied exercise and proper nutrition, suffered from osteoporosis, so her leg had to be amputated. Baby never barked, as her vocal cords had been cut to save the breeder from the inconvenience of hearing the dog’s cries.

Jana adopted Baby from Drive-by Angel, and became what she describes as an “accidental activist” taking on the puppy mills.

The book is a beautiful one, not only because of the story it tells, but there are stunning photographs of Baby with celebrities and politicians who share a love of animals.

What I went away with from this book is action steps, that we, as dog lovers and advocates can take:

All of Jana’s profits from the sale of her book go to the HSUS. To find out more: A Rare Breed of Love: The True Story of Baby and the Mission She Inspired to Help Dogs Everywhere.

Thanks for listening,


May 04, 2009 | Comments are off | Stray Dog

Chiropractic for dogs?

Greetings All,

I just got finished cutting up raw beef liver (gross) for Roxie and Gypsy as part of their homemade dog food diet. The good news is I don’t have to do it very often, as a container goes a long way for them.

I wanted to give you an update on the stray puppy I talked about in my April 2nd and 3rd posts. We found him running around in our neighborhood and ended up taking him to the Humane Society where he was put up for adoption. Great news! He found a permanent home.

I have long been a fan of chiropractic treatment for myself, but never thought about it for my dogs until I noticed that Roxie, who is nine years old, had developed a pronounced hump in her back. At their annual appointment, our very traditional vet didn’t make comment about it, which bothered me as it sure didn’t seem normal to me. When my mom and stepdad came for their annual visit, my mom asked “Roxie has a bump in her back, is supposed to be that way?”. I took action and found a vet, Dr. Maria Williams, here in San Antonio who specializes in holistic pet care, including chiropractic treatments.

Roxie started getting chiropractic adjustments in December, staggered at two weeks, then three weeks, etc. Dr. Williams also recommended we give Roxie regular massage, which I do every 2-3 days. Roxie is a hyper little girl, and really does not like going to the vet for any reason. They administer some homeopathic drops to calm her down before Dr. Williams works on her.

Roxie’s hump is now gone, and she has regained her previous level of energy. We will continue to take her for adjustments about every couple of months for maintenance.

Dr. Williams holds a certification from the American Veterinary Chiropractic Association where you can locate a veterinarian to provide animal chiropractic services in your own area.

I found an excellent article about chiropractic for dogs. If you want to check it out, it is included as part of a free report “Ten Topics for Natural Dog Care”.

Until next time,


Apr 23, 2009 | Comments are off | Holistic, Homemade Dog Food, Stray Dog

Homemade Dog Food? Not! part 2

Good morning to all,

In this post, I’ll wrap up the story about the stray puppy.

I forgot to mention yesterday that we took the stray puppy to a nearby vet to see if he had a microchip. He did not. So, he had neither a collar nor a microchip. The vet tech also told us the puppy was 4-5 months old, and he weighed 12 pounds.

Rick set up a small fenced-off area for him in our back yard, moved the dog house (which is never occupied) for him, and gave him water and food.

The little guy really had an engaging personality and just wanted to play. So, we decided to see how Roxie and Gypsy would handle him. Gypsy immediately put him in his place, and he left her alone. Roxie, however, would not stand up for herself, so of course the puppy pestered her until we put a stop to it.

We really expected to get a call from his desparate owner that evening in response to the signs we had posted, but the phone did not ring. So, we had an overnight guest.

The next morning, I called the Humane Society once again to see if any cage space had opened up for him. It had. They gave us an appointment for that very afternoon to bring him in. The people at the Humane Society could not have been nicer, and the puppy happily greeted the new humans as they took him back. They are hopeful to have him ready for adoption as soon as they neuter, vaccinate, microchip, and bathe him. They charge a receiving fee of $25.00 which I think is totally fair and reasonable given all they do, and Rick and I felt compelled to double it to $50.00.

I will be watching their website to see when he comes up for adoption, and I’ll keep you posted.


Apr 03, 2009 | Comments are off | Stray Dog