August 2017
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!

Wags and Tags editorial team: Joan Black (managing editor), Jen Burns, Sue Doctrow, Ellen Leigh, Judy Weinberg 

Articles in Wags and Tags represent the opinions of the author(s) not necessarily those of A-DOG or the editorial team.
A-DOG logos designed by Lisa Berasi for Arlington Dog Owners Group, all rights reserved

DON'T FORGET FIDO FEST is coming Saturday, August 19 evening at Spy Pond Field!

In this issue: 

On some computers, you might have to click twice to reach the article. We've found, too that these links do not work on all devices.
Fido Fest at Spy Pond Field August 19
Don't forget -- join us to celebrate summer with your dog!

AugFidoFestCalling All Dog Owners & Dog Lovers
FIDO is Coming!  FIDO is Coming!
Fido Fest,   Arlington's Premier Dog Video Fest ival will be held:
Sat 8/19, 7pm at Spy Pond Field (near the Boys and Girls Club)
Free to all (Well behaved humans and leashed friendly dogs welcome)
Amazing videos have been submitted to Fido Fest.  "America's Home Videos" has got nothing on FIDO Fest.  Bring your friends, family and pups.  Stroll on down to Spy Pond Field and watch the outdoor video event of the year.  Bring a blanket or a chair and have some fun watching pups parade on the BIG screen under the stars.  FUN for everyone!    
A-DOG's Fido Fest Committee
Jen Burns, Ellen Leigh, Anita Pliner and Judy Weinberg

Thank-you to the sponsors of FidoFest:
Blue Sky Dogs, Judy Weinberg RE/MAX Leading Edge, ACMI, A-DOG, Road Warrior Moving and Storage and Mal's Service Center.   
Jen, Ellen, Anita and Judy are all A-DOG board members.
Age is not a disease!
Why we treasure our senior pets

by Dr. Becky Schoenberg

AugBeckyOne of my favorite professors in veterinary school used to have a favorite mantra - 'age is not a disease.'  While I memorized it dutifully, it took me many years, and transitioning to a practice focused on senior pets, to fully understand the meaning and implications of this saying. But the more I think about it, the more I realize the truth in his words, and the fact that caring for a senior pet, while challenging, can be an incredibly rewarding experience.

While older pets can be prone to many health problems that we don't see in puppies and younger dogs, being old, by itself, isn't an illness. Many of the signs that people attribute to aging - being less active, losing their appetite, showing less interest in their favorite things - aren't actually signs of being old, but potentially signs of treatable or manageable health conditions. Arthritis pain, for example, can often be mistaken for "just slowing down," and once the pain is addressed and creaky joints are treated, many dogs can return to active lives.

Age is also not a barrier to treatment. Many people are afraid to pursue treatment for their older pet's conditions, because they're worried that their bodies can't handle such things as medications or surgery. And it's true that if an older pet has serious health problems, we may choose to avoid some types of medicine or procedures.  But a healthy older pet, with careful supervision and good veterinary care, can have their quality of life safely and seriously improved by, for example, dental care, tumor removal, or pain management.

The most important realization that I've had, though, when it comes to living with senior pets, is that this phase of life doesn't have to be a burden, or focus on loss.  It's so easy, as we watch our pets grow older, to think about the things that they used to do but can't - they may not be able to go running with us; old teeth may not tug on favorite toys; vision loss may make chasing a ball less fun. This mindset can be saddening, and it can lead to changes in our bond as we struggle to find ways to keep our pets an active part in our lives.

But living with, and loving, a senior dog, can instead be a time to celebrate your bond! While your old pooch may not be the athlete they were when they were two, older dogs are excellent companions for gentle walks around the neighborhood or park.  Now that summer is approaching, swimming is an excellent exercise for senior dogs - even if they just wade, a trip to the beach can be an amazing shared experience.  And an afternoon sitting in the sun and sharing a cuddle is a joy that may not be an option with an energetic pup!

Ultimately, old dogs are amazing pets for quiet companionship, low-key love, and peaceful bonding - and after spending so many years making our lives better, we have a chance to intervene and do the same for then. There's no need to let your pooch's age get in the way of keeping up the loving bond that you've built with them over so many years!

Dr. Becky Schoenberg, through her practice Autumn Care and Crossings, provides in-home veterinary care, including geriatric care and pain management and hospice/end-of-life care.


A birthday tribute to one senior pet, 16 year old Sophie. Contributed by A-DOG's Joan Black and family, including 3.5 year old Lila and 18 month old Nora:

See video here.

ACO Katie's Corner
Going Wild In Arlington: Little Bandits: Raccoons Around Your Door

by Katie Kozikowski
Aug17ACOHave you seen adorable little bandits creeping around your trashcans recently? Well, if you live in Arlington, you probably see them quite often!
Raccoons are one of the most often spotted animals around town. Although they may appear cute and cuddly, it is best to leave them be. One of the biggest misconceptions is raccoons are solely nocturnal; so if you spot one during daytime, it must be rabid. While this may be true in a small number of instances, 99.9% of the time; it is just the opposite. The town of Arlington is not a forest or the " wild " where wildlife express natural behaviors - there are trash cans filled with yummy leftovers, dumpsters packed with even more delicious dinners and lots of fun things to do during the day. Sometimes you may even observe an adult female during daylight because she is just taking a break from her playful pups back at home.
If the raccoon you see during the day time is walking normally, climbing trees, drinking water or digging through the trash, he/she likely is not rabid and just going about their daily activities. If the raccoon is walking in constant circles, falling over and/or excessively drooling, then this requires a call to Animal Control as soon as possible to assess the situation.
Even if you are watching a healthy raccoon, keep in mind it is never safe to approach, feed or pet one (or any wildlife for that matter). Wildlife should remain wild. When people interfere by feeding raccoons and other wildlife, the animals become reliant on people. This means they won't be able to successfully teach their young how to hunt on their own and ultimately will be detrimental to their survival.
When wild animals are approached by a human, even in a friendly manner, animals do not necessarily know there is no threat. The reaction may be  as if there is danger. When animals are in danger, "fight or flight" response kicks in. If they can't flee, they will attempt to defend themselves which could result in a bite or a scratch to a person or pet. Other reasons raccoon may try to fight off a "predator or competitor " such as people or dogs, are because they sense their young is threatened or feel food is at risk of being stolen.
To avoid additional interactions with raccoons, it is best to avoid attracting them. Do something  simple like keeping trashcans inside a shed, garage, basement etc. Raccoons generally visit homes in hopes of finding food outside in trash. If there is no food, the raccoon will move on in search of another food source.
If you have issues with raccoons constantly on your property, it is important to remember you cannot trap and relocate them. In Massachusetts  relocating an animal without a proper license is illegal and can result in fines.If you relocate the animal(s), the likelihood survival plummets . The animals dropped off in an area they do not know needs to learn how to locate food, and water sources and proper shelter. I'm sure people in the raccoon (s). "new" neighborhood will not  appreciate the fat that you made "your problem" "their problem."
If you have issues with wildlife and would like general advice or suggestions, please  contact me at Animal Control. I cannot remove animals for you but can give you advice to help animals move away on their own without harm! With proper precautions, you can safeguard your home and coexist with wildlife.  

ACO Katie's Corner presents updates from Arlington Animal Control Officer (ACO) Katie Kozikowski.  Collaborating with Katie on this column is Joan Black, A-DOG board member/officer and member of the Wags and Tags editorial team.

An Arlington Dog: Little Lost Doggy
Luvy Waiting at Menotomy Rocks Park 

by Michelle Goldshiag, good Samaritan  (posted on the Arlington List July 28)
AugLittleLost"A couple years ago my son lost his " stufty " (as we call it) named Fluffy in an airport.  Sadly, they would not let us leave the gate to retrieve it even though we had time to do it.  They would also not bring it to us even though they had it in their possession; it was ridiculous!! They said they could put it with lost and found for someone to retrieve, but we were leaving town.  I called Aunt Julie who was about 90 minutes from the airport and a very type A personality to get after it.  After numerous calls and talks with airport staff, someone found him in the trash!!!  Fluffy was set aside. Julie drove the 3 hours it took to go there and back to get Fluffy and ship him to us in NC.  It was one of the best days ever.  Fluffy was our son's security blanket and is still with us today. Knowing how important these stufty's can be, I needed to post this pic of a lost dog sitting on the notice board at Menotomy Rocks Park. Hope he/she gets to their owner."
Thank you, Michelle, for posting this photograph and sharing Fluffy's story.  Please help this little doggy "waiting" find its lost owner.  We would LOVE to feature the "happy tails" ending to this story in next month's WAGS & TAGS. (transmitted by Joan Black).
A-DOG Membership Meeting
Join us August 22

by Joan Black 

AugMeetingPlease join us for the next A-DOG board and membership meeting, August 22 at the Jefferson Cutter House Community Room (Arlington Center). Agenda:

6:30 " Sensational   SUMMER Salad S oiree & Potluck"
Come join us.  Meet new friends & enjoy a taste of summer salads.
Bring your ideas & learn more about A-DOG and its mission.
"Remembering Roslyn" candlelight moment
7:00-8:00 pm: Proposed Agenda:

Minutes from May

OLD Business  

Charitable Guidelines, K9 Recreation Liaisons,  ACO Park Volunteer Program, A-DOG/Grey 2K Fundraiser, Library and other projects 


NEW Business
FIDO Fest (Summary & Review}
Membership Record Keeping  System
Town Day Planning
Programs & Events
  •   Whole Foods Pet Boutique/August
  •   CPR/ ACO/November
  •   Recreation: Dog Days of Summer & Howl-o-ween Sept/October 
  Bring your ideas!

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

Aug17calend JulCalendar"NEW or RENEW: We still need YOU to join the A-DOG pack!" It is NEVER too late.  
...Sign up today  here .  


Mark your calendar for these great EVENTS. Please consider attending or volunteering for the events sponsored or co-sponsored by A-DOG (shown in   GREEN).   Contact us if you're interested in volunteering at any of these events...we need you!

  • Reading Dogs, Rufus, Thelma, Benny, Penny, at FOX Library (175 Massachusetts Avenue in Arlington) with "bark to school" from 3:30-4:30 for all ages & reading levels. Sign up for 15 minute reading sessions. Please get tickets at circulation desk starting at 3 pm day of event. Happy tails are waiting to listen to your tales.  Rufus & Thelma, Benny or Penny will be ready to read on the following dates. Generally, first and third Tuesdays of the month. Contact the Fox library for dates.
  • Thurs, August 17. From the Arlington Police Department: Public Memorial for K9 Dasty. A procession will be taking place in front of the Arlington Police station, 112 Mystic Street, August 17, 10 a.m. with K9 Units from across the state. A short ceremony follows on the Brian R. Greeley Memorial Plaza at the rear of the station. All are welcome to attend. APD strongly encourages the public to park in the Russell Common municipal lot and walk down to the station. There will be free parking at that lot until noon.
  • Saturday evening, August 19, FIDO Fest Arlington Video Festival, Boy's and Girl's Club field, Spy Pond.  Submit your videos (up to 5 min) by August 4! More information is posted on the ACMI website.
  • Tues, August 22, 6:30 - 8 pm, A-DOG meeting, Jefferson Cutter House, lower level (Community Room), Arlington Center. A "Summer Salad Soiree" potluck.
  • August 26, Whole Foods Market is inviting Pawz 'n Wiggles Mobile Pet Boutique to its parking lot from 11 to 2. Contact the store for confirmation and further information.
  • Sat, September 16, Arlington Town Day -- visit our A-DOG booth! (Arlington Town Night, with the Dog Show, is Friday, Sept 15). We could use about 8 volunteers to help with our booth. Please contact us if you can volunteer.
Send us calendar items for possible inclusion in this section in future Wags and Tags issues!  

Pawsome People and Awesome Dogs....
Thank-you to those who help animals...

compiled by Joan Black

Aug17PawsomeSomerville Dog Festival Is Coming: Come Celebrate Happy, Healthy Pet Ownership & Support Somerville Pet Food Pantry September  2017
Somerville Dog Foundation announced   we delivered our first pet food shipment to our own  Project SOUP  here in Somerville. This is in addition to our May shipment of nearly 40,000 POUNDS of pet food to "people" food banks throughout Eastern Massachusetts! Your donations and participation help us ensure that NO ONE IN OUR COMMUNITY EVER NEED CHOOSE BETWEEN FEEDING THEMSELVES OR THEIR PETS.
The Somerville Foundation for Animals proudly presents the annual Somerville Dog Festival, Sunday, September 10th, 11:00 am - 3:00 pm at Trum Field, Somerville, MA!.   Again, the Festival will feature an array of things to do with your dogs, your kids, and your entire family.
The Somerville Dog Festival, the only one of its kind in the country, offers "Try It" areas for dog owners to experience activities such as agility, scent work, Kibble Quest, weight pull and other sports; demonstrations of dog sports; features such as a fashion show, owner-dog look-alike, and tricks contests for attendees (no practice required!); raffles, fantastic vendor booths; a demonstration of police K9 work; and free "Come When Called" classes for attendees.
 We'll also welcome back the Doggie Fun Zone, a super fun, fast-paced lure-and-chase attraction for dogs and spectators to enjoy.
Each year our intrepid volunteers write, build sets and put on  "Fairy Tails Theater", featuring canine and human actors, a favorite attraction during the event, past plays have included "Make Way for Ducklings", "The Frog Prince", and "Little Red Riding Hood." This year, come see Rapunzel throw down her hair!
The goal of the event is to education the public and promote healthy, happy pet ownership and activities, thereby lowering the need for relinquishment and euthanasia of animals due to behavior problems.
This year also introduces the Foundation's Somerville Pet Food Pantry, providing pet food to homeless and at-risk families throughout Eastern Massachusetts.
Admission is free but tickets are required to participate in many "Try It"  events. $1.00 tickets are sold in $10 or $20 bundles throughout the fairground. Proceeds will  benefit Food Pantry and Foundation's other charitable work.
We hope you enjoy the day with us.  See you at the the Somerville Dog Festival.


Pawsome Award: Massachusetts Law signed by Governor Baker: Protecting Pets in HOT Cars
Please help remind friends and family temperatures in a car on a HOT day can skyrocket. We're deeply saddened by this tragedy. Investigators are considering criminal charges against the dog's owner.
Last year, Gov. Charlie Baker signed a bill that protects pets left in hot cars - as well as those who rescue them. The new law helps prevent animals from suffering and dying in hot cars by allowing intervention by first responders and, under certain circumstances, Good Samaritans when an animal is at risk. Earlier intervention can save an animal and prevent an owner from being charged with animal cruelty, a felony in Massachusetts.
Thank you to  Boston Police Department (Official) City of Boston Animal Care and Control MSPCA-Angell , and  Animal Rescue League of Boston  for their efforts to save this dog and to protect so many others. 
Information on providing care to dogs with suspected heat-related illness here
More information here

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

JulYourDogHereA-DOG Members and supporters, Wags and Tags is YOUR monthly newsletter!  I f you have suggestions for an article, including one you'd like to write, for a future issue, please email us with "Newsletter" in the subject line.   
Maybe you'd like your dog to be one of our " Arlington dogs, or A-dogs ", like Molly, Remy, Tammy, potcake Lexi and others. Or, write an article about Happy Tails Trails, describing your favorite place to enjoy nature with your dog. 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 or feline family member you've lost.
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 OM Cookies, Menotomy Beer Wine and Spirits, Maida Pharmacy & Compounding Center and Lakota Bakery.
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 no greater than 1 MB. For text, arial 11 pt, single spacing preferred. (Please send the photo as a separate file, not imported into a Word document.

Articles on any other topic of potential interest to dog owners are welcome.  So are more volunteer editors and writers. Please send us your story proposals!  Wags and Tags editorial team:  Joan Black (managing editor), Jen Burns, Sue Doctrow, Ellen Leigh and Judy Weinberg.

Pssst...We are well aware that  our members are not likely to have issues with spelling or grammar that's a little "ruff", but don't worry....our editorial team can polish your story, as needed. Feel free to ask.
The Irish Setter on the computer photo is reprinted from a website called "iget2work". The "Bad spelling...image was posted on Facebook by Grammarly.  

A-DOG Meetings in 2017
A-DOG holds five meetings per year, in January, March, May, August and October. Unless otherwise noted, meetings are on the fourth Tuesday of the month 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. Refreshments are served. New members show up every time so please join us!

A-DOG Membership!
A-DOG's membership year runs from April 1 through March 31, so some full memberships are up for renewal each spring.  If your membership has expired, you should have received a reminder letter in early 2016 during our  Membership Drive.  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.  
Shop for A-DOG!  

Please support businesses that support responsible dog owners in Arlington by patronizing our Friends of A-DOG Businesses.  

(If you are not a full member, please sign up and pay your dues at the link above for joining A-DOG. If you are unsure if your membership is still active, or need another membership card as proof, you can email us to check into it.)

Also, when you buy from Amazon, please start at the Amazon Smile website which should get you directly to our donation link. If not, be sure to choose "A-Dog The Arlington Dog Owners Group, Inc" as your preferred nonprofit group.  Amazon will make a donation to A-DOG and your purchase will not cost any more!

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.