June 2014
Wags and Tags
Celebrating the canine-human bond!

          This newsletter is brought to you by Arlington Dog Owners Group (A-DOG), a 501(c)(3) community organization promoting the rights and interests of responsible dog owners in Arlington, MA.  

If you're not already a member, we hope you'll want to join A-DOG!

A-DOG logos designed by Lisa Berasi for Arlington Dog Owners Group, all rights reserved
Meet "A-dog" Molly

A family collaboration to describe their love for Molly



I have always been a dog lover but did not own one due to my work schedule and not being home most of the time. A year ago, for a variety of reasons, I decided to take early retirement. Although quite the adjustment, it gave me the opportunity to finally look at getting a dog to share my life with. A good friend of mine, Gary Nutter, is with Westie Rescue of New England Inc. a 501c3 nonprofit organization of all volunteers that dedicate their time to saving fostering and placing Westies into their new loving forever homes

I called Gary and told him I was interested in adopting a rescue if we were a good fit. Coincidently Gary had just taken in a little dog from S. Carolina that was about to be put down because no one wanted her. She was not a Westie but, just like my friend Gary, he could not let her be put down. I asked him to send me pictures and when I looked at them I thought she might be a Chihuahua. Given the "reputation" of this breed I did not think we would be a good fit.


Gary suggested I come meet her anyway and, given that we had not seen each other in a while, I agreed. This was a day that will stay in my memory forever. There was an instant connection and I fell in love with her immediately! After visiting for a couple of hours I asked Gary if I could "take her home today" to which he said "of course!" Gary had been calling her Princess but I decided her name would be Molly. Not sure why but it just fit.


Once home Molly was a bit skittish and not overly friendly. I took her to the vet right away for her shots and he said she was timid and needed some time to adjust. All it took was love and understanding. I have four grandchildren all boys ages 10, 8, 6 and 4. When I told them about Molly they could not wait to meet her. Well, the first few times they came over Molly would hide behind the couch. Over time that began to change and now Molly loves them as much as they love her.


I had to be away for a week and Molly spent the time with my son, daughter-in-law and the grandchildren at their house. They had so much fun together they have asked for Molly to spend the week-end with them from time to time. The bond they have is truly amazing! At Molly's last vet appointment he commented on what a happy dog she is. When I told the boys about A-DOG the two oldest boys asked if they could write a story about Molly. Here are their stories:



When Molly Escaped

by JT age 10

April 2014

5:00 pm at Petco. How did I get in this mess? Flashback to 3:45 pm, we were peacefully eating our dinner. Well, it was anything but peaceful for Molly, in fact we were grabbing a quick bite while she was in the car. At 4:00 pm we went to Petco. We were going to get a beta fish but I was really planning on convincing my Mom to get a hamster. 

Even though you could let your dog into the store, Molly wasn't too fond of that policy. At 5:00 pm I heard my dad ask "Where's Molly?"  Molly must've wiggled out of her leash!  As we turned around, Molly was out of the automatic door and the parking lot.  As she approached route 1 she stopped at our car. YAY! We all shouted.

That's when Molly escaped.


When Molly tree'd a Raccoon

by Trent, age 8

April 2014

Woke up at 7:00. I watch a bit of tv in my moms bed. My mom says "someone take Molly out"  because she had to go peepee and she also did yesterday, the day before that, and I think she peed on the rug the day before that!

I walked downstairs with her and got my coat. She went dashing zip zeem zoom and she was barking at the trees. I thought she was crazy but I was wrong! I saw a oversized 'coon coming by! I was scared to death! It stared at me straight in the eye. I said "bye bye Molly, I'm going in!"  I ran upstairs and said "DAD! There's a big fat raccoon!" He ran to get Molly and the raccoon was gone!

Molly saved the day! And that's all I have to say about that.






by A-DOG member Eileen O'Shea and her grandsons, JT and Trent.  


PAWS to Mark Your Calendar!
Save the date for coming events



MAY WAS  MEMBERSHIP MONTH but we still need you, if you haven't already, to join the A-DOG Pack. "NEW" OR "RENEW" IT IS EASY TO DO.  Sign up today here.




Thursday June 12 (7-8:30 pm) Third Annual Membership Celebration at Menotomy Beer and Wine, 80 Broadway, Arlington for a "Wine and Whine Tasting Yappy Hour".  You may bring your well socialized dog but definitely bring your reasonably well behaved selves!  Refreshments will be served along with the wine tasting and a gift drawing will be scheduled for 8 pm.  All are welcome, but please be an A-DOG member to be eligible to win a prize (Membership forms will be available, or sign up online).  Wine and Dine with  A-DOG! (Photo shows the fun at last years' event!)  Please RSVP here to give us an idea of attendance, but feel free to show up anyway if you decide at the last minute!


Saturday, June 21 (9 am - 12 noon) (rain date, June 28)  Photo Day at the Thorndike Off-Leash Recreation Area for dogs and their owners!  Clix portrait studio will be on hand to take photos and for anyone interested in placing orders. Arlington Recreation will get a percentage of all sales and those funds will be deposited in a maintenance fund for the dog park. Contact Arlington Recreation for any updates.


Tuesday, June 24 (7-9 pm)  A-DOG Monthly Meeting, Jefferson Cutter House Community Room, Arlington Center.


Thursday, July 17 (7 pm) Screening of the film Redemption at the Regent Theatre, Arlington, MA. Tickets ($5) are available in advance through the Regent link or can be purchased at the door.  Information about the film and the event:  Nathan Winograd, J.D., Director of the No Kill Advocacy Center and the nation's most vocal and influential voice for life-affirming outcomes for homeless companion animals, has created the film "Redemption" as a sequel to the 2007 book of the same name, which documented the history of sheltering in the U.S. and proposed mandates for a no-kill revolution. How far have we come? What further is needed? Who has been successful? Where are homeless animals the safest? A question and answer period with Nathan will follow. 


Saturday - Sunday, August 2-3 (10 am - 5 pm) Somerville Dog Owners Group's (som|dog's) annual Pet Palooza "includes all our furry sidekicks and their companions for a two-day, family focused festival"!  More details here

Arlington Public News Photo Contest:  "Pets Enjoying the Weather"
Enter your pet's photo in the first-ever "Photo of the Month" contest!






Arlington Public News is a production of Arlington Community Media, Inc. We are a team of volunteer citizen journalists interested in reporting community events, issues, and achievements. Over the past year, APN has done extensive news pieces and interviews, including features on pet safety.


In an effort to further engage our community, Arlington Public News is proud to announce our first ever Photo of the Month contest!  In honor of Spring, the theme this month is "Pets Enjoying the Weather.


We know that Arlington is home to some of the area's most adorable pets, and we'd like to see them! Be sure to submit your photos on Facebook at the Arlington Public News page for a chance to win a $25 gift certificate to Arlington's own Firefly Moon gift shop!


Deadline for submitting photos is June 18 and, again, please submit them to the Arlington Public News Facebook page.  The winner will be announced on June 20th on the Arlington Public News website. You don't need to be an Arlington resident to enter and you can submit as many times as you like. We look forward to all of your submissions!


Find out more at our website.





by Hannah Perlmutter, Assistant News Director of Arlington Public News.  Photo shows Murphy.
A-DOG Authors
 Write What You Know




When Arlington moms Dagmar Jacisinova and Jennifer Goebel were looking for reading material for their four middle school and elementary school-aged boys, they kept finding great books...for girls.

Disappointed, they took matters into their own hands and decided to write a book for boys, inspired by their sons' love of soccer.

The two neighbors have four soccer-playing sons between them, and have logged countless hours and hundreds of miles taking their kids to soccer games around Massachusetts over the last 10 years. All four boys started playing at age 5 with the Arlington Soccer Club, and have since played on various town, select, Maple, MASC and high school soccer teams.


As with most books, the authors took experiences from their own lives. Dagmar is the mother of twin boys, who are, not coincidentally, the two main characters in the book. Jennifer's dog, Duke, also makes an appearance in the story. 

After two years and five drafts, Tournament the story of an incredibly high-stakes soccer tournament set in post-nuclear 2044, was published and sent into the world. While marketing the book has been a challenge for the two authors, who each have full-time jobs of their own, the book has received praise from middle school teachers and kids, and they are working on a sequel.


The book is available on Amazon*, as well as at the Book Rack in Arlington and the Ottoson School Library. 




Photos: (Left) Jennifer with Ruby (helpfully drooling on laptop) and Duke, giving his critique ("not enough squirrels"). (Right) Dagmar with her beloved Yoyo, the most wonderful, loving dog, who is now chasing tennis balls in heaven.



*Note from A-DOG:  If you buy it on Amazon, be sure to use the  Amazon Smile link and choose "A-Dog The Arlington Dog Owners Group, Inc", and  Amazon will donate a percentage of the sale to A-DOG.  We are proud that Jennifer and Dagmar are A-DOG members!  




Arlington's First Annual "Bark for Life" Event
Sixteen Dogs and their Owners Help the American Cancer Society



The American Cancer Society's signature event Relay For Life happens in Arlington each year. Last year, Arlington held its first Bark For Life, a special event for the canine participants who are affected by this disease. Some dogs are affected themselves, others are canine caregivers to their humans. The second annual Bark For Life was held on May 10 this year and raised over $800 through 16 dogs.

The money raised through Bark For Life goes to the American Cancer Society for research as well as programs. To learn more about where the money goes, visit this website. 

Join us for the 3rd Bark For Life in 2015. The anticipated date is Saturday, May 9 at the Arlington Reservoir on Lowell Street. Any questions can be directed to Dee Savioli at barkforlife2013@gmail.com.


article and photos contributed by Rachel Feinberg

Friends of A-DOG
Thank-you to our supporting businesses, including....

 My Wonderful Dog


Elsa Larsen, owner of My Wonderful Dog, began her career in the field of dog training as a volunteer for the Assistance Dog Institute in Santa Rosa, California, a unique program that engaged incarcerated youth in the care and training of dogs to assist people with disabilities.


In June 2000, Elsa moved to Portland, Maine to start My Wonderful Dog, Maine's only non-profit dedicated to the training and placement of dogs for the disabled.  In 2005, the non-profit had to close its doors however, under the banner of My Wonderful Dog, Elsa continued to offer training to pet dogs and their people.  Recently Elsa has relocated her business to Arlington with her fianc´┐Że and her 11 year old Labrador, Lincoln.


Over her 17 year career, Elsa has worked with dogs in both a group class and a one on one setting, finally settling on her in-home approach. "In-home consults are the best way for people to get the most out of dog training," said Larsen. "They are not competing with others, and we can work specifically on their needs in real-life situations: everything from teaching new skills to a young pup, to behavior problems like anxiety, aggression or destructive chewing."


Working with clients in the home, Elsa stresses a combination of management and training.  "Before your pup ever discovers that jumping on people is the best thing ever, let's set him up to ensure that never becomes a problem.  Have your puppy on a leash when people come over and let's teach him to sit and greet or to go and lie down on a mat instead of jumping", suggests Larsen. "This is the pro-active way to deal with potentially problematic behaviors".


This fall Elsa will also begin teaching a small group class called "Your Dog Can Do What?" Guaranteed to amaze your friends, this 6-week class focuses on teaching your dog practical tricks like turning on lights, opening doors, putting toys away, and retrieving your phone or wallet. 



My Wonderful Dog is a Friend of A-DOG, offering A-DOG members special benefits when they show proof of full membership.  For ADOG members: a package of three one hour visits in the home for $150.00 or $10.00 off Elsa's new "Your Dog Can Do What??!!" group class, as described above.  Email: elsa.larsen58@gmail.com or call 207-329-2925.





Help Wanted: Your Dog's Face Here?
Wags and Tags Welcomes Your Contributions

A-DOG Members and supporters, Wags and Tags is YOUR monthly newsletter!  If you have suggestions for an article, including one you'd like to write, for a future issue, please contact us (arlingtondogowners@gmail.com) with "Newsletter" in the subject line.   
Maybe you'd like your dog to be one of our "
Arlington dogs, or A-dogs", like Shinoo (November), Donato (February), Annabel (March), or Mack, Ozzy and Coco (April).  You don't have to live in Arlington, but can be a neighbor who enjoys Arlington's dog recreation benefits, or otherwise supports our mission.  You can also suggest a special Rainbow Bridge memorial tribute to a beloved canine family member you've lost, like the beautiful tributes to Isabel in March and Raleigh in May.  
Or, maybe you're a Friend of A-DOG Business and want to describe how you help A-DOG and what you offer to our community of dog owners and dog-friendly people.  Your business, too, can be featured like Bette Yip's Picture Perfect Pets (November), Menotomy Beer, Wine and Spirits (December), BlueSkyDogs (January), GoPlay! (February), Arlington's Unleashed (April), or Fit Doggie and Me (last month). 
Suggested article length for the newsletter is 500 words or fewer but this is only a guideline.  We will also need at least one photo, preferably a jpg or gif format, compressed to a size of less than 1 MB.  Depending on the topic, you might want to write a longer version for our website, with a link in the Wags and Tags article.

The Irish Setter on the computer photo is reprinted from a website called "iget2work".



Our next  A-DOG meeting
A-DOG's monthly meetings are scheduled for each 4th Tuesday evening. Come join us on June 24, at 7:00 - 9:00 pm at the Community Room of the Jefferson Cutter House, 611 Mass Ave (at Mystic, in Arlington Center).  The Community Room is accessible via the rear entrance at the municipal parking lot.


A-DOG 2014 Membership Drive Is Still On!
A-DOG's membership year runs from April 1 through March 31, so some full memberships are up for renewal.  If your membership is expiring, you should have received a reminder letter and there is 2014 Membership Drive information on our website.  As an A-DOG Full Member, you are entitled to discounts and benefits from our Friends of A-DOG businesses.  And, your dues and donations to A-DOG are tax deductible, to the full extent allowed by law.


A-DOG members, Business Friends of A-DOG and other subscribers receive Wags and Tags each month.  If this issue was forwarded to you and you'd like to subscribe to Wags and Tags without joining A-DOG, click here or click the green sign-up button on the front page of our website.  

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Arlington, MA 02474