December, 2018
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, and Ellen Leigh. Contact our managing editor if you'd like to submit an article. (Guidelines: 500 words or fewer, with 1 or 2 photos of 1 mb or smaller.)

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
In this issue:
  • A-DOG's New Mailing Address and Meeting Locations: Please Note
  • Paws for Calendar
  • Happy Holidays from A-DOG: Season of Light
  • Jake's Story: Foster Hope
  • Pawsome People and Awesome Dogs
A-DOG's New Mailing Address and Meeting Locations: Please Note

New address . While many of our members register and pay their dues online, not everybody does. Some prefer to mail their registrations and checks. In the past, the address to send these was: A-DOG, c/o Smith, at 36 Washington St in Arlington. However, our founding board member, Ann Smith, moved out of state almost a year ago. Since Ann moved, A-DOG has used a new address:

Arlington Dog Owners Group or A-DOG
PO Box 70
Arlington, MA 02476

We modified our brochures and other materials, including on the website, to reflect this. Still, there are many brochures still out in the public with our old address. Also, some longtime members are accustomed to that address and still use it. Ann has received these as forwarded mail and sends them to us. But, the USPS will only forward her mail for 1 year and, soon, all these mailings will probably be returned to sender. Please make sure your mailings to A-DOG get through by updating your contact info to reflect our new address.

Meeting venue changes : A-DOG will be meeting at various locations during 2019. Please check carefully to ensure that you know the location of the next A-DOG meeting if you plan to join us. Our January 22 meeting will be held at the Community Safety Building (Arlington Police Station), 112 Mystic Street, Arlington, Conference room, second floor. The room is accessible. Our meeting dates for 2019 are: January 22, March 26, July 23, and October 22 (Annual Meeting).
Paws for Calendar
  • Pet First Aid/CPR class scheduled for November was postponed due to inclement weather. We will announce a new date soon - stay tuned!

  • Sunday January 13, 2019, 11:00 am–2:30 pm: Bark Happy PJ Pawty, Boston: Polka Dot Bakery 256 Shawmut Avenue, Boston: Admission Fee includes free photo, samples, coupons & refreshments etc  Benefits Missing Dogs in Massachusetts. Info here.

  • Tuesday January 22, A-DOG's first meeting of 2019, Arlington Community Safety Building (Police Station), 112 Mystic St, Arlington; Conference Room/second floor/accessible, on street parking. Please join us to set proposed calendar of events, activities & goals for the year. Bring yourideas. *Social & Refreshments "Winter Warmer Soups" 6:00–7:00 pm; Business Meeting follows 7:00–8:00pm. Hope to see you there.   

  • Unleashed (1406 Mass Ave in Arlington) hosted Jessica "Santa PAWS" for photo opportunities with your dogs. A-DOG's own Jessica Dooley, Pinot, & Alfie are shown above with Jessica "Santa PAWS". Thank you to Arlington's Unleashed for hosting the event in support of rescue. All proceeds benefitted Last Hope K9 Rescue: Rescue is our Favorite Breed (Last Hope is 501(c)(3) nonprofit, all volunteer, foster based Massachusetts rescue. Our mission is to save dogs from kill shelters & find permanent homes or fosters willing to open their homes & hearts until adopters are identified.) To learn more about Last Hope K9 Rescue or upcoming events "Adopting in a Winter Wonderland" click here. Even though you may have missed the event, you can still contribute to Last Hope.

Happy Holidays from A-DOG: Season of Light
by Joan Black
May the "Season of Light" bring you warmth of family and friends with blessings of good will. In this issue are several suggestions and opportunities for giving. We all have the ability to make the world better with acts of kindness and generosity by donating or volunteering time and talents. There are no greater gifts than sharing the light of love and compassion. Together we make a world of difference. 

(Belated) Happy Hanukkah from a "Hanukkah Hound." Here is Rex waiting for Foster Mom Daniella Eriksson to snap the photograph. Joys and rewards of opening your home and heart to an animal awaiting adoption are infinite. Rex did celebrate with the bone after being a very good & patient boy. Rex reports, "It was delicious! Happy Hanukkah to all and to all a good treat."  

*If you, too, have a special tale of tails to tell, please send to WAGS & TAGS so we can share the light.

Please enjoy (#adoptdontshop) "Christmas Kisses"video sung by Serena Ryder in partnership with Ontario SPCA. Support local Shelters & Rescue Centers. 

‪"Thank you so much for making this happen. I had so much fun making this record & video with Ontario SPCA and the amazing dog cast. Much love to you all." Serena Wyder.  

Jake's Story: Foster Hope
by Diane Swift  (ARK,  Animal Rescue Konnection*
Stop Determining a Dog’s Fate Based on Shelter Behavior Alone

Jake is a stunning 1 to 2-year old German Shepherd, a stray brought to a holding facility. Stray dogs are held for 7 days and generally evaluated for appropriate placement. Jake was extremely fearful and was so stressed he could not be evaluated. He growled and it took a month for the staff to gain his trust.

 People don’t realize shelter dogs are tested under duress and are often too shut down to participate, as in Jake’s case. As a result, life or death decisions are often made based on this failed strategy. Jake’s true personality could not be evaluated under highly stressful conditions. Many such dogs lose their lives. This is a dog’s fate if not given chance outside a shelter.
Jake was well past his hold time, so the facility and Animal Rescue Konnection* (ARK) tried desperately to find placement. ARK has impressive success rates for placing at-risk dogs like Jake.
They had the challenge of trying to find a foster with German Shepherd experience willing to take an 80-90-pound dog, sight unseen, and who needed extended time to de-stress in a home environment. Jake was rigorously networked on social media. After hundreds of shares, a woman with breed experience volunteered to foster Jake, who was actually scheduled for euthanasia the next day. The facility was filled with strays and Jake had simply run out of time.

According to foster mom Lauren, Jake now takes long walks, plays in the yard, and loves his bed. He was terrified of water at first, but now loves it. He plays in a kiddie pool with his new best friend, Lauren’s 4-year old daughter. Jake likes fishing with the family and actually jumps in the water to catch the fish himself. He is completely different in the comfort of a home, a place that’s enabling his full potential. His foster mom is working on his anxiety, and he’s already showing signs of relaxation.
Jake’s story is not unlike other homeless dogs, but he was lucky. He was placed in a holding facility longer than usual. The staff wanted him to have a chance at life. That gave us time to find him a wonderful foster home.

Providing homeless dogs a lifeline toward adoption has many obstacles. Jake is safe, but his story sheds light on how a dog’s shelter behavior differs from behavior in a calm home setting. It’s unfair to evaluate dogs in a hectic, stressful shelter environment and expect them to participate. Dogs should have opportunities outside a shelter to show their true nature.
When a dog enters a shelter, a behavior modification plan should be put in place if the dog needs one and staff trained to implement it. If a shelter can’t manage this, they should seek help or transfer the dog to a place that can. A comprehensive approach for evaluating shelter dogs is common practice; shelters must stop determining a dog's fate based on shelter behavior alone. To do so is unjust, unfair, and unnecessary. If Jake’s fate had been determined by his behavior in the holding facility, he would not have been networked, but rather euthanized.

Can you imagine how you would react in a scary new place that’s loud, chaotic, and full of people you don’t know? No privacy, no freedom, no love. Think about that and recall times you come home from a trip and get that warm feeling of relief. There’s no place like home.

* Animal Rescue Konnection (ARK) is a lifeline for homeless dogs. ARK bridges the gap between stray and homeless dogs and organizations that can help them find new homes. ARK specializes in helping mislabeled breeds and dogs that are at risk. It is a tax-exempt public charity under section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

 If you are interested in fostering, contact ARK at  
                              Foster HOPE & Save Lives.
Pawsome People and Awesome Dogs
Florida Votes "YES" Question 13: The Ripple Effect for Ending Dog Racing
by Joan Black with Christine Dorchak, President GREY 2K & Gina, rescued greyhound

For more information:
41st State: After Question 13 in Florida, What will Happen To The Dogs?, 
In 2008 Mass Voters Approve Ban, 
Eleven Tracks Closed: Greyhound Racing in Florida,
Timeline To Victory, Safety for greyhounds: How To Adopt A Racing Greyhound/Donate, 
Across the globe:Banning Dog Racing Worldwide, FIND topics in the following summary. 

On November 6, Florida became the  41st state  to prohibit dog racing! We in Massachusetts voted to end this cruelty  in 2008  and we were the 35th state to do so. This latest ballot question was also drafted by our Arlington-based GREY2K USA and passed by a definitive margin of 69%-31%.  Eleven  of the 17 dog tracks remaining in the United States will now close.  Read their timeline to victory.
Tracks will wind down over 26 months,  allowing thousands of lucky greyhounds to be brought to safety.   Christine Dorchak of GREY2K says the group will now intensify its mission to end dog racing around the country and  across the globe .

" The Return of The Doggie Investigation Gang:The Case of the Missing Tutu " by Shara Katsos

We are excited to announce a new doggie mystery available. The Doggie Investigation Gang just published “The Case of the Missing Tutu.” The books are early chapter readers, that follow three dogs and their friends as they solve mysteries as a team. The books make wonderful gifts for young readers in your life who love dogs and mysteries. Since the publication of the first book in the series, the author and illustrator have continued to donate all of the proceeds from sales to local dog rescues! As a result, they have been able to donate over $1,500 to PAWS New England, All Breed Dog Rescue.

To purchase autographed copies or a matching children’s tutu with the book, contact the author directly at .  Available at , Barnes and  and .

For more information, click here  or follow the Doggie Investigation Gang on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @doggiedetective for raffles, giveaways and prizes! 

FLASH:   The Doggie Investigation Gang Book Series made New England's Woof Magazine 2018 Best Holiday Gifts List. So excited & honored to be part of a wonderful publication that shares our mission of helping dogs in need.

More about Shara & The Doggie Investigation Gang by Joan Black

Shara and her “DIG” team have participated in Arlington Town Day as well as A-DOG’s FIDO Fest & Library programs. A-DOG supports the mission of her books and the themes of cooperation, tolerance and respect for individual differences. The doggie detective characters are based on Shara’s own real life dogs. They use their unique gifts to solve problems. For example Pedro is a blind min pin rescued from a puppy mill. He uses his sense of smell to search for clues and small size to go where the others cannot. Cooper is a large yellow lab whose strength, leadership qualities and swimming ability come in very handy. Cooper is also a therapy dog who works with veterans. Charlie, the cocker spaniel, offers good ideas even though sometimes he gets a little anxious & worried. There are four books in the Doggie Investigation Gang series. Be sure to bring them all home and support rescue and compassion at the same time. I gave them to my grandchildren and they loved them.

Meet the Doggie Investigation Gang with Shara: Cooper, Pedro & Charlie (photo).

California Fire Devastation: You Can Help  by Joan Black

On November 10th with family and friends, I attended my son's wedding in Carmel Valley just a few hours below below San Francisco. It was a beautiful, idyllic venue located on a ranch. We felt as though we were dwelling in the magical Shire of Middle Earth. However, as we drove north to fly home, we encountered darkened grey skies and air heavily ladened with smoke. The horizon resembled looming shadows of Mordor from the fires far to the north. The fires would rage and burn on for weeks. My son Eric and his new bride Nichole considered our presence gifts. They requested only donations to charities to celebrate the joy of their marriage. Need in California is great for people, domestic animals, and wildlife. Heroic stories continue to emerge in the aftermath of this disaster. Recovery will be ongoing. Rescues and shelters are over burdened with burned, displaced and lost animals. Please consider lending a helping hand. I did.

Displaced Pets From California Fires: Here's how you can help by Jillian Blume, in "This Dog's Life" November 2018, describes the situation and offers suggestions of how to help.
A-DOG Meetings in 2019
A-DOG holds five meetings per year, in January, March, May, July and October. Unless otherwise noted, meetings are on the fourth Tuesday of the month. The next meeting is at the Community Safety Building (Arlington Police Station), conference room (6 to 8 pm). Schedules and locations of 2019 meetings will be announced in Wags and Tags .

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 expired, you should have received a reminder letter 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. If you are not an A-DOG member, join here anytime! (If you join after Sept 1, expiration will be extended to the next membership period so you don't miss out.)

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.  
Arlington Dog Owners Group |