November 2015
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, Jen Burns, Sue Doctrow, Ellen Leigh, Judy Weinberg; 
A-DOG logos designed by Lisa Berasi for Arlington Dog Owners Group, all rights reserved

In this issue:
  • Annabel: a rainbow bridge tribute
  • Happy Tails Trails! East Boston Camps in Westford
  • A-DOG's Annual Meeting 2015 Highlights
  • From ACO Katie: Click It AND Ticket!
  • Ricky on the Arlington Whole Foods Project, Share the Chow
  • "Two Front Paws Up" for Pawsome People and Awesome Dogs!
  • Paws to Mark your Calendar
     
A Rainbow Bridge Tribute to a Beloved "A-Dog"
Annabel: February 1, 1997 - August 29, 2015
Annabel

By Alice Diamond and Harold Boll
 
Annabel was our beloved bichon frise who lived to be 18 ½ years old.  She was a lively, joyful, friendly, happy pooch whose favorite activity was riding in a basket on a kick scooter with Harold. When she got excited, she ran around in circles at top speed.  Annabel kept her youthful look into her later years, and most people were astonished to learn her age. She loved to run at Robbins Farm Park and walk around our Arlington Heights neighborhood. We are very grateful to her wonderful care at Winchester Vet Group (especially Dr.Zannoti), to her dog walker Joanna Deemys (Joanna's Critter Sitter), to her groomer Bruno (Bubbles and Bones) and to her caretaker in her senior days, Judy Cohen.
 

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Alice and Harold are A-DOG members and Annabel was a featured "Arlington dog" in Wags and Tags. Our thoughts are with Alice and Harold on the sad loss of their Annabel. Photo captions (top to bottom): Annabel at the beach; Mosaic portrait of dear Annabel; Scooting with Harold; Celebrating our wedding August 2007

All Paws in at East Boston Camps in Westford
Happy Tails Trails!




by Lyssa Black Fassett

Summer slowly transitions to fall and I head out on a mild, sunny day to one of my favorite spots to walk, East Boston Camps in Westford. Just a few miles outside of the town center, this protected area, also known as Stony Brook Conservation Land, is a magnet for dogs and their humans, with 286 acres of brooks, vernal pools, bog and a pond that provide habitat for a large variety of plants, migratory birds and mammals, as well as miles of walking trails threading around and through the camps. The "camps" are a series of cabins and community buildings established in the 1930s by a family foundation created to help and empower low-income residents of East Boston and surrounding neighborhoods. Originally built as a "fresh air camp" for those children at a time when tuberculosis was widespread, the camp system is now owned by the town of Westford and an integrated part of the trail system. 

Entering from Depot Street, I drive a short way up this dirt road for the parking spaces to be found among the stand of white pines near the trailhead for Stony Brook, my go-to path. All of the trails are well marked and, depending on the weather and time of day, fairly well traveled without being crowded. Within a few minutes, a white ball of fur who has escaped her leash and greets me with enthusiasm greets me. I say goodbye to the exuberant 5-month-old husky and her apologetic owner and continue on the path to the brook, one of the few people out today not accompanied by a dog or two. 

 As I continue down the wooded path to the brook, the beautiful vista of Stony Brook reveals itself, never failing to lift my spirits. Blue sky and wispy clouds today, ducks on the water and many wildflowers still in bloom. The trail follows the brook for a good while, and there is always something to notice whether you look up, down or around. A snake disappearing under the leaves, different varieties of moss on the trail, a hawk feather lying in the underbrush, a hiker taking pictures from one of the memorial stone benches placed at intervals along the path. And every five minutes or so a dog will pass me, either on-leash or off-.*

Be sure to follow the trail to Burge's pond if you come. On a sweltering day, there is no better place for people-and dogs-to cool off and enjoy the pristine water, backdrop of maples and birch in full leaf and the many songbirds and ducks who summer here. Amazingly, there are never more than a few people swimming, perhaps because you have to walk a bit to get here! 

 As one who loves dogs but doesn't have one, I enjoy these encounters with the canine tribe and exchanging a good laugh or smile with their human companions. For more info on the conservation area and links to trail maps click here. For info on the history of East Boston Camps and downloadable maps click here.  



 
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 * Note: According to the bylaws on the town website, Westford does not allow dogs "at large" but it does allow dogs "under control of the owner or an authorized escort either by leash, cord, chain or otherwise." 
A-DOG's Annual Meeting, 2015!
Highlights of A-DOG's October, 2015 Meeting


by Judy Weinberg and Sue Doctrow

We met at the Jefferson Cutter House in Arlington Center. The first half hour was a meet-and-greet with Arlington's new Animal Control Officer Katie Kozikowski. The regular meeting followed.

Brief introductions were made as we went around the table with 13 people in attendance. We also welcomed our newest Board Members, Jen Burns, Jessica Farman and Janice Zazinski. They join existing Board Members, Joan Black, Susan Doctrow, Ellen Finnie Duranceau, Andrew Fisher, Deborah Goldsmith, Amy Goldstein, Mary McCartney, Anita Pliner, Ann Smith, Roslyn Smith, Judy Weinberg and David White.

Joan Black passed out index cards, asking us to write down what we would like to see for A-DOG in the coming year. There was a drawing and Ann Smith won Lakota Cookies, donated by Joan. What could be better! There were great ideas for new and continuing projects.

Katie introduced her "positive reinforcement" program. Secret ticketers around town will "catch" dog-owners following the leashing and clean-up rules or doing other helpful things, making them eligible for monthly prizes. She also described plans for the recent Belmont Animal Control on a "Living with Coyotes" presentation, held in collaboration with A-DOG. A program is in the works to allow online dog license renewals. Katie is considering offering a rabies vaccine clinic in conjunction with licensing your dog.

Membership Report: 449 total A-DOG members, compared to 402 in 2014. Many more on our Wags and Tags mailing list, including Friends of Thorndike Dog Park, Friends of A-DOG and other supporters.

Next, highlights of the past year were reviewed, including:

TOWN DAY in September was a huge success, there was always a crowd in front of our booth which featured an interactive "Name the Breed" game, free dog massages by Janice Zazinski, a drawing for a gift basket of donated prizes, a contest to name the mechanical dog and great conversation with fellow dog owners. More new members than ever signed up at the booth.

K9 REC ACTIVITIES, from Arlington Recreation, offers fun events for dogs and their humans, and A-DOG will continue to provide publicity to support them. Their most recent event was the Howl-o-ween costume party at Thorndike Dog Park. A-DOG will be invited to all events to distribute membership information.

A-DOG DONATIONS, thanks to donors to our Friends of Thorndike Dog Park fund, donated about $1100 to the town for a visitor's bench the Thorndike Dog Park.  In an effort organized by Board member Ellen Finnie Duranceau, A-DOG also donated money to Robbins Library to purchase our recommended books on dog training and the canine-human bond.

ACMI, Arlington Community Media Inc. A-DOG has renewed its ACMI membership and Board Member Jen Burns has been training with ACMI to produce videos, which will help increase A-DOG's social media and online presence.

Some events were suggested for the coming year including:

~ Paint Your Dog fundraiser at Art Lounge in February, already in progress organized by Jen Burns

~ The First Annual Dog Video Festival, with Judy Weinberg and Anita Pliner expressing interest

~ Dog training workshops, repeating successful ones organized, most recently, by Joan Black

~ Pet first aid and CPR program, repeating the successful one organized by Mary McCartney and ACO Amanda Kennedy

~ Meet-and-greets with Katie (ACO) at the different parks around town during off leash recreation times
 
There was enthusiastic discussion and lively participation. Refreshments and conversation were enjoyed by all and the meeting concluded at 9:00.

Join us in 2016 for our A-DOG meetings! (Watch Wags and Tags for the schedule, beginning in January).
 
 

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Judy Weinberg and Sue Doctrow are A-DOG board members and officers, as well as members of the Wags and Tags editorial team. Photos (top to bottom): Attendees at the Annual Meeting, except for photographer Jen Burns; close-up of the new visitor's bench at the Thorndike "dog park"/off leash recreation area. Photos by Jen Burns, also an A-DOG board member and member of the Wags and Tags Editorial Team.
"Click it AND ticket!"- then win a prize! 
A Pawstive Incentive Program from our Animal Control Officer


by Katie Kozikowski
Arlington Animal Control Officer

Arlington Animal Control has come up with a fabulous new idea to REWARD those who follow the canine control bylaws in Arlington, as opposed to just punishing those who do not! Some A-DOG members have stepped up to help out. 

So here's the [pooper] scoop....There will be a few people around town who carry raffle tickets with them, if you get caught following the leash law or helping out in other ways by one of these ticket holders (e.g.: leashing your dog after off-leash hours hours and in the appropriate areas, picking up after your dog, assisting someone with finding their dog, picking up after other people's pets or even helping out wildlife - in a 100% safe manner of course - along with whatever we feel will appropriately earn a ticket) you will receive ONE of these raffle tickets. To urge you to keep doing what you are doing, there is no limit to how many tickets you can receive each month! 

Now, you may be asking yourself what you might be getting in return for these good deeds of yours. Well, we have a plethora of prizes ready to go for you good deed doers! The prizes will be donated by Friends of A-DOG and other supporters of responsible dog ownership in Arlington and range from gifts cards to pet supplies! I'll give you a little sneak peek at the first month's prize...we have a $20 Whole Foods gift card generously donated by Whole Foods themselves!!!! You can choose to spend it on you, your family, your family pet or whatever you'd like. Nothing beats that! 

The last Friday of every month, we will choose one of these raffle tickets and post the number and picture of the ticket on the Arlington Animal Control and Arlington List Facebook pages (be sure to go on facebook and like these pages so you know if you are a winner). Keep an eye out for the winning ticket, if it turns out to be you, not only will you win a prize BUT also you (and your pet, if you have one) might be featured in A-DOG's Wags and Tags monthly newsletter! You can tell others what you did to receive your ticket that led to your fabulous prize and we are hoping this will urge others to do the same. 

We will be rolling out this program ASAP and the ticket holders can be anywhere at any time so be prepared with your leashes.

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Check out this ACMI interview with Katie!

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Katie's articles are featured on a regular basis with information, alerts and concerns in "Katie's Corner". Photos are from a recent "Meet and Greet" with Katie and Arlington dogs and dog owners during off-leash morning hours at Menotomy Rocks Park. The Meet and Greet was organized by Judy Weinberg and hosted by A-DOG. If you want to help have a Meet and Greet with Katie at your favorite park, let us know!

Whole Foods Project: Share the Chow
A-DOG members, human and canine, visit Whole Foods Arlington


 
by Ricky, with a little help from Ellen Leigh and Joan Black
 
On November 3rd 2015 my companion Ellen Leigh, Joan Black and I interviewed Matt Robertson at Whole Foods in Arlington about SHARE THE CHOW PROJECT. I am a nearly three year old NEADS Service Dog and I have lived in Arlington with Ellen for sixteen months. We are members of Arlington Dog Owners Group {A-DOG}. I was inspired to learn more about SHARE THE CHOW and how it benefited shelters, rescue groups and food pantries. Matt told me that the staff at Whole Foods Arlington had the idea to reach out to local groups in need with surplus pet supplies. The response was overwhelming. People nomin ated organizations and WHOLE FOODS was able to award over 700 pounds of food to feed shelter and homeless pets in the Boston area during October. Among the recipients were: Northeast Animal Shelter, Last Hope K9 Rescue, Boston's Forgotten Felines, Schultz Guest House, and Sweet Paws Rescue. Matt explained,"We reached out through social media requesting nominations for charities which would qualify. The interest generated was amazing. It was one of our most popular ideas and is something we would definitely attempt again." 

 WHOLE FOODS will be partnering with A-DOG for future endeavors as well as supporting Arlington ACO Katie Kozikowski's PAWSTIVE INCENTIVE Program which will debut this month. In behalf of A-DOG I barked a hearty "Thank You!" to Matt and the staff at WHOLE FOODS and awarded them The PAWSOME AWESOME AWARD. As for me I was gifted with a wonderful new blue bone, so i gave Matt an example of some of my best "thank you" kisses for helping animals in need.

Click below to watch a video by Jen Burns of our visit with Matt!





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Photos (top to bottom): Matt, Joan, Ricky and Ellen; Matt with Ricky; Ricky with his gift from Whole Foods Arlington



"Two Front Paws Up" for Pawsome People and Awesome Dogs!
Congratulations to.....






Arlington Dog Owners!  Nobody is more awesome than A-DOG members and other responsible dog owners in Arlington! In response to our Action Alert, dog owners wrote letters and showed up for the Parks and Recreation Commission hearing on off-leash dogs at Menotomy Rocks Park (MRP). Thank you to Judy Weinberg and Molly Flueckiger for your notes on the meeting.  Here is a summary from Judy:

Acting on what they stated were ongoing complaints about off-leash dogs at MRP, the Parks and Recreation Commission held a public meeting on November 4 at Town Hall Auditorium. It was unclear what the intent was to be: discuss the elimination of all off-leash hours, or explore ways to better enforce the existing law. 

With the threat of the morning hours being cancelled, responsible dog owners and their supporters went into action! In the week leading up to the meeting, Joe Connelly, Director of Recreation, received approximately 75 emails, overwhelmingly in support of maintaining the current off-leash hours. 

Well over 100 people attended the meeting. Assurances were made from the outset that cancelling morning hours was not being considered; hopefully the strong show of support contributed to that sentiment. 

The next two hours were spent brainstorming how to curtail off-leash dogs past the 9AM cut-off and discussing the rule that doesn't allow off-leash dogs in the woods. There was lively debate on both sides of the issue, but everyone agreed the interactions were civil and respectful. The following list describes the suggestions made by various participants. Joe Connelly will be appointing a Task Force to further the discussion. 

1. Ticket, ticket, ticket!; 2. Owners and/or dogs to wear a medallion indicating that the dog has passed obedience training; 3. Set up clearer protocol for registering complaints (maybe anonymously); 4. Take photos of dogs and text to ACO;  5. Encourage users to self-police; 6. More signage; 7. Non-dog hours in the park; 8. Fenced-in dog recreation area; 9. Video monitoring; 10. Clarification of rules; 11. Increase off-leash hours to include the woods. Other items discussed: 12. Add afternoon off-leash hours;  13. Seasonal off-leash hours.


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John Maguranis, for recently presenting Living with Coyotes in Arlington (summary by Joan Black & Katie Kozikowski).  Thank you to all who attended the November 3, 2015 presentation on "Living with Coyotes" given by Belmont's Animal Control Officer John Maguranis and co-sponsored by Arlington's very own ADOG! We had an excellent turn out of 50+ people!
If you are interested in becoming part of a safe coyote "hazing" group in Arlington please contact me (Katie) at kkozikowski@town.Arlington.ma.us for more info. John is the Massachusetts state representative for Project Coyote, and will be presenting in other locations as well if you happened to have missed this month's session.
Please follow this link to find out where John will be going next and to learn more about Project Coyote. 

This is the second program which John has donated to the Town of Arlington as a community service. In appreciation John requests donations be sent to Project Coyote to support the important work of education and advocacy.

John gave a presentation in Arlington last winter, too. Read the article about his presentation from an earlier Wags and Tags.



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Photos: (upper) Gus at MRP (Molly Flueckiger); (lower) John Maguranis.


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

APRIL MAY BE OUR OFFICIAL MEMBERSHIP MONTH BUT WE NEED YOU ON OUR TEAM ALL YEAR!  If you haven't already, join the A-DOG Pack.  "NEW" or "RENEW", IT IS EASY TO DO...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 (*). Contact us if you're interested in volunteering at any of these events...we need you!
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Thursday, November 26 wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving! 
 
Friday, December 4 at 6:00 pm  craft fair at the Pet Republic  2322 Massachusetts Ave. in Cambridge the Somerville Animal Foundation is teaming with the Pet Republic for a festive event featuring local crafters & artisans. Food and drinks provided. 10% of each sale goes to benefit MA -Vest -a -Dog an orginization who supports Massachusetts police dogs by helping to provide K9 bulletproof vests.  Come and enjoy the fun and get some shopping done. Details here.
 
Saturday, December 5, 2015, 9 -11 am. Pictures with Santa Paws at the Thorndike OLRA.  Start your holidays off on the right paw! Just in time for the holidays come and get a picture of your furry friends with Santa Paws! Help support Arlington's only fenced off-leash recreation area - a great place for dogs and their humans to play and make new friends! This great event is sponsored by Tracy Wallace, Steve McKenna and the Home Advantage Team.
 
Saturday, December 5 4:30-6:30 pm, at MSPCA Nevins Farm, Methuen. Holiday Tree & Christmas Festival for the Horses.  Join the MSPCA and us by honoring the animals which share our lives. Please bring contributions of carrots, apples and peppermints for the stockings of our adoptable horses. We will be ligihting our 2015 Holiday Tree  and then  enjoying festive music with light refreshments at the Adoption center's Open House.  Santa  will be available for photographs with your pets but bring your own camera.  This event is free but donations are appreciated. Register here.

Sunday, December 6, 11 am-2pm. Orvis Store, Assembly Square, Somerville. Bring your pups for Santa Paws photos to benefit Somerville Dog Owners Group. Treats will be served!

Stay tuned for future issues with details about: Paint Your Pet at ArtLounge (February), sponsored by A-DOG; Volunteer Clean-Up Day at Thorndike OLRA (March); Walks of Nature, Part 2, Great Meadows (April), both sponsored by Arlington Recreation K9 Recreation program.

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Future A-DOG MeetingsNext year (2016) meetings will be announced soon!

 
Send us calendar items for possible inclusion in this section in future Wags and Tags issues!  
 

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!  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. 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 moving tributes to Isabel, Raleigh, Strummer, Cita and Jasper.  
 
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, BlueSky Dogs, GoPlay!, Menotomy Beer Wine and Spirits,Your Wonderful Dog and Maida Pharmacy & Compounding Center.
 
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.  (Please send the photo as a separate file, not imported into a Word document.) Depending on the topic, you might want to write a longer version for our website, with a link in the Wags and Tags article.

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, 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 will edit your story, as needed.
 
The Irish Setter on the computer photo is reprinted from a website called "iget2work". The "Bad spelling...image was posted on Facebook by Grammarly.  

 

 

Our final  A-DOG meeting  for 2015
  
A-DOG held four meetings in 2015 and the 2016 schedule will be announced soon. 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.  
 

 

A-DOG Membership!
 
A-DOG's membership year runs from April 1 through March 31, so some full memberships are up for renewal.  If your membership has expired, you should have received a reminder letter and there is Membership Drive information on our website.  If you join now, your annual full membership will be good through March, 2016.  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 dogowners in Arlington by patronizing our Friends of A-DOG Businesses.  Welcome to our newest Friends of A-DOG, Maida Pharmacy & Compounding Center and Joe Trains Dogs.  Also, when you buy from Amazon, please start at the Amazon Smile website and 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.