Golden Ribbon Rescue
September 2017

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Newsletter Editor:
Dawn Marie Rae

Send comments or
suggestions to:

Gold Ribbon Rescue
PO Box 956
Austin, TX 78767
512 659-4653

A Message from Our President...
Margo Biba

Dear Friends,

As I type (August 27th), hurricane Harvey is dumping an unprecedented and historic amount of rain in south and east Texas. GRR stands ready to assist Goldens displaced by the flooding. If you hear from friends/neighbors/shelters needing placement for their Goldens, please instruct them to leave a message on the GRR hotline, 512-659-4653 or contact us at Our thoughts and prayers go out to all displaced persons and animals unfolding in this catastrophic flood.

Additionally, Austin Pets Alive, the Austin Animal Center and the Animal Defense League of Texas (in San Antonio) have established Amazon wish lists and/or drop-off points for contributions and donations. See the article directly below.

Did you know that there is a website which lists all of the Golden Retriever Rescues in the USA? The Golden Retriever Club of America’s National Rescue Committee has links to all of the groups. Go to It’s amazing to me, having started volunteering full time with Golden Retriever Rescue of Nebraska, GRRIN in 1993, that there are now so many Golden Retriever Rescues. Many selfless volunteers; many lives saved.

Reminder – the annual membership meeting will be held on Sunday, October 1st at 11:00 am, at the Upper Crust Bakery in Austin. Save the date. The annual meeting is a good time to get to know GRR board members, ask questions and discuss thoughts about our group’s direction.

A big big thank you to all of you who donated to Chase's (17-098) GoFundMe campaign for his intestinal surgery.

Enjoy the newsletter!

As Ever,


Help Pets Displaced By Harvey!

Information current as of August 31. All three organizations are keeping their websites and Facebook timelines current as to their immediate needs.

San Antonio:
The Animal Defense League of Texas

"At this moment, we are mostly in need of medium and large pet travel kennels for transporting pets. If you would like to donate, you can drop them off at our 11300 Nacogdoches Rd. location or shop from our Amazon Wishlist.

One of the biggest ways to help ADL make room for pets impacted by Hurricane Harvey is to adopt a furry friend already in our shelter. Adoption fees are waived with a donation for adult cats and dogs 6 months or older! (excludes puppies, kittens, and adopt-me-now pets) Going on now until September 4th at both ADL locations!"

  • Austin Pets Alive

    "Thank you all for the amazing outpouring of support over the past 24 hours! At this time we no longer need donations sent to our temporary location. Because of this unbelievable support we have been able to care for the over 1,000 animals in our care and have even been able to send supplies down to those who need in most in the Houston area, and help Austin Animal Center set up their shelter to assist folks who have evacuated to Austin with their animals."

  • The Austin Animal Center (AAC) also has an Amazon Wishlist.


Letter From The Editor - Passing The Baton
Dawn Marie Rae, Sophie and Emma

I can't tell you many hours I've spent petting Sophie or Emma with my left hand while my right hand was trying to type out a story or research a topic! It's been a whirlwind three years. So, I am pleased to introduce Dori Olsen and announce that she will be taking over as editor of GRR's newsletter and the newsletter team. It's time to pass the baton and give the newsletter a new creative presence. I've greatly enjoyed my time in this space. What an experience! Thanks to everyone who helped to make this newsletter work: writers and contributors and editors all. A very special thanks to Scott Hubbard at Relevant Tools for all that he has taught me in the technical management of this newsletter. It's been FUN!

In this issue, read about a teenage Guardian Angel from Houston who was responsible for rescuing dear Chase. Get to know about our Golden Angel Sponsorship Program for our Permanent Fosters and get ready for our Hearts of Gold Gala, October 29th!

This month's contributors:
Juri Naus - Amy Craig - Jen Micyk - Pam Parmiter - Paula Ellis - Dori Olsen - Amy Sebesta - Michael Neely - Anita Briggs

Thank you,
Dawn Marie


Upcoming Events and Notices

Membership Meeting
Sunday, October 1
11:00 am
Get to know our board members and discuss thoughts about our group’s direction.
Upper Crust Bakery, Austin

Gold Ribbon Rescue Presents...
The Hearts of Gold Gala!

When: October 29th 5:00 - 9:00pm
Where: The Historical Charles Johnson House -
American Legion

Address: 404 Atlanta Street Austin, Texas 78703

Tickets are on sale! Please purchase and RSVP by October 22 here. It’s going to be a gold star event, with a catered dinner by Food! Food!, wine and beer tastings, music, a silent auction … and a gang of Golden Retriever lovers coming together to celebrate that wonderful breed with hearts of gold. Check out the outstanding menu and our many supporters. COME! PLAY!


How Your Adopted Dog Changed Your Life...Write About It and Win!
PetCo Foundation

The Petco Foundation, in partnership with Petco, will be awarding more than $750,000 in grant awards to deserving animal welfare organizations during the annual Holiday Wishes campaign.

Click here to check out last year's finalists stories to see what makes a great submission!
HINT: quality photos and/or video make a big difference!

We invite those of you who received awards to submit another story about a different pet in your home! Prior year winners cannot be awarded again for a story about the same pet - but if you have more than one adopted pet living in your home, we encourage you to submit again.

Share your story of love!
The Petco Foundation wants to know all the ways, big and small, that the love of your adopted pet has changed your life for the better. Share your story, along with photos and/or video, illustrating how your pet brings more joy to your life each day.

How to participate:
  • Write your story of love in 500 words or fewer.
  • Gather your best visual assets. You'll need a photo of your pet by him/herself, a photo of you or your family with your pet and up to two other photos to illustrate how your pet has changed your life. Videos are good, too!
  • Submit your story and photos at by Saturday, September 30 at 11:59 p.m. CST.
  • Include the contact information for the organization you adopted from so that they can be eligible for a grant award! (Gold Ribbon Rescue PO Box 956 Austin TX 78767-0956
    Hotline: (512) 659-4653 (GOLD))

Wait until the holiday season to hear if your story is selected. Finalists receive a Petco gift card (up to $1,000!) and the organization they adopted from receives a grant up to $100,000! Follow us on Facebook to be the first to know about Holiday Wishes updates and winners.


Our Golden Angel Sponsorship Program
Paula Ellis


Chula and Skeeter

While 99% of GRR dogs find loving, adopting homes, a small number is best served by receiving life-long care from Gold Ribbon Rescue because of age, medical or emotional needs. The Golden Angel Sponsorship Program helps to support the dogs we call our Permanent Fosters.

Meet two of them here.

Chula: When a new family member came into the home, Chula, age 12, was moved outside to more or less care for herself. Neighbors spotted Chula wandering the neighborhood, lying in the street, walking slowly, having difficulty standing and not getting any protection from the weather. We received a call from a caring neighbor asking, “Can you help?” And that’s how this sweet, sweet, girl came to GRR. 

Chula is an easy-going gal around other dogs, gentle by nature and loves everyone. Chula had numerous medical issues which were addressed. Chula was made a Permanent Foster Golden because of her mobility issues: Chula can’t get up off the floor without assistance so she wears a Help ‘Em Up Harness at all times, so that her foster parents can lift her off the floor.  She requires their assistance 30+ times daily.

In spite of these issues, Chula is happy and engaged with life.  She insists on being at her foster mom’s side at all times, and will bark whenever she’s out of Chula’s sight.  Chula is a special girl who deserves the royal GRR treatment.

Skeeter: Seven year old Skeeter had been used for breeding for most of her life: living in a backyard was all she knew. As a result, Skeeter was not socialized and quite shy. With positive reinforcement, patience, love and being with other calm Goldens in her foster home, Skeeter has made significant progress. She will always be sensitive, timid and fearful of new situations but Skeeter continues to grow emotionally and socially and is starting to enjoy the ‘good life.’

Because of Skeeter’s extreme shyness, skittishness and fear of new people and situations, GRR has made Skeeter a Permanent Foster so her forward progress can continue.  Click here to read about all of our GRR Permanent Fosters and to learn about our Golden Angel Sponsorship program on their behalf. All of our Permanent Fosters say “thank you.”


Up And At 'Em...Using The Help 'Em Up Mobility Harness
Anita Briggs

Bailey (15-048, estimated age 18 years) and his littermate Honey (15-049) have been with our family a little over two years. Though we tease that they are invincible, arthritis does seem to be taking its toll, especially on Bailey’s rear legs. Cold laser therapy has helped for almost a year, and it is the reason Bailey has a shaved back in the photos. In a recent round of Bailey’s wobbliness, Margo recommended we try a Help ‘Em Up Harness. We found ours on Amazon and got it the next day. We are so thankful for this simple tool that brought back some of Bailey’s mobility and happiness!

The Help ‘Em Up Harness comes in two versions – one for the rear legs only, and one with both front and back segments. We purchased the front and back variety, but Bailey and I couldn’t quite seem to get the hang of navigating using the front and back parts together. Using only the back part, we both quickly learned to coordinate. The harness is so easy to use that all our kids (down to ten years old) are strong enough to help Bailey walk. Bailey does the steering and I am the motor, supporting his back legs as he walks. Downhill slopes can be a little unwieldy, since Bailey is providing both the steering and the power, and my job is just to keep up and keep the harness handle in place for when the terrain flattens out.

Not only does the harness support Bailey’s weight to walk, it also seems to give him better confidence in his balance. He is much more willing to get up, often going to get water on his own, which he had stopped doing for several weeks. I feel so much better about his hydration knowing he feels he can go get a drink! Bailey has also resumed his “evening rounds” checking on the family’s activities. Sometimes he steps out of the harness if someone isn’t immediately nearby to hold it. He is once again able to walk a little way even without the harness.

A word about sizing – Bailey is right on the edge of the harness size chart between medium and large. After reading a review of a dog’s legs chafing, I decided sizing up would be better. We allow him to wear the harness very loose – it can slip off in his sleep or fall off when he walks. He seems comforted having it there even when he is laying down, and I feel better knowing it isn’t restricting him at all.

We’re hopeful that Bailey will keep the mobility he has regained for quite a while. If he has a more serious decline, then we can incorporate the front part of the harness, providing even more support for him to walk. Now that we both have mastered the harness for his rear legs, I’m hopeful we will get the hang of the front part easily when the time comes.

Here is the link to the Help ‘Em Up Harness. They retail there at $115.00 for the large size.

There are various brands of harnesses for older dogs on the market, some with very good reviews, but in Margo’s long experience, this is the one she most likes.


Chase And His Guardian Angel Ana
Dawn Marie Rae with Pam Parmiter (on behalf of Ana)

Ana and her father, Matt

Without the tenacity of a driven 15 year-old teenager in the Houston area, who refused to take no for an answer, Chase 17-098, may have never been on our radar.  Her name has been withheld, (per her parent’s wishes. This special person is Chase’s guardian angel. Ana saw a beautiful puppy that needed help quickly and the shelter was unable to provide the services. GRRH turned them down as did a few others, but she did not give up!  Hence her Hotline call and her Facebook posts. The Citizens for Animal Protection (CAP) in Katy gave her the GRR website information. She saved his life. 

She has three dogs of her own: a Golden, a Boxer, and an unknown mix and she has volunteered in shelters for a couple of years, while in Florida. Her parents even drove to LaGrange to hand Chase off to Tom Walter and Pam Parmiter.

Chase gleefully “christened” their brand new Mercedes 3X on the way from Katy, but it was no problem to them. GRR has given Ana and her family a year’s membership and thanks all of them whole-heartedly. Thank you Ana – again and again!

Editor's Note: We are happy to report that Ana and her family are safe and in San Antonio.


Chase's Saga
Adoptive Family - Christine Driggs

Chase 17-098 at intake and post-op. Go little boy!

Hi, my name is Chase and I want to thank all the wonderful people at Gold Ribbon Rescue in Austin Texas for saving me. This is my story...

I was in Houston, Texas and didn't have a home. I was picked up by a shelter and because I was so young and cute, a family quickly adopted me. I was with them for about a week. I was having terrible stomach problems. I couldn't eat and I was vomiting. The family brought me back to the shelter because I was sick. When I was at the shelter they realized I had some serious medical issues and they too couldn't help me.

Gold Ribbon Rescue in Austin was called to see if they could help me out. Quickly they assembled their troops to bring me to Austin. I had a wonderful car ride with a GRR transport team, Pam and Tom. They kept me comfortable for the long ride back to Austin.

I was brought to an emergency hospital is South Austin to see what was wrong with me. I had a bunch of tests done. The doctors there said I needed emergency surgery because I had really bad stomach problems. They called it an intussusception. Its where my intestines telescoped onto each other. When I was waiting for my surgery to start, my foster Mom Christine came to visit me. My surgery went well and I was able to go to my foster home the next night.

The doctors told my foster Mom I needed to eat every 2 to 4 hours to build up my strength. I had to eat special food because of mu surgery and they wanted me to try not to play too much until my surgical staples came out.

Two weeks later I had my staples removed. But I didn't gain any weight. Even after eating every few hours. I am trying a new food to see if that helps.

I still have a long road ahead of me. I'm only a few months old and have been through a lot.

My new family and Gold Ribbon Rescue, in Austin Texas, has been amazing in helping me on the road to recovery. I love them so much.


I'm So Beautiful!

Well, hello gorgeous! (Juneau Goldberg)


Where Are They Now? Hero 17-022
Dori Olsen with Martin and Kristin Moon

Our GRR Hero is doing wonderfully in his new home with Martin and Kristen Moon. He’s been with the Moons since the end of June and is quite the active boy. He had a rough start with several surgeries, required to repair his leg. Hero is truly a hero for his bravery through the pain of a shattered femur bone that was incorrectly partially healed and a knee cap that was out of place, multiple surgeries two months confinement for convalescence and the wearing of the cone of shame. His foster mom kept singing to him “I’m holding out for a hero at the end of the night” and Hero took it to heart.  He absorbed all the pain, and he always showed appreciation for the care he received. His foster mom kept coming up with creative strategies to keep his mind occupied, including  basic command training using that all-time favorite, bacon treats.  At long last, that day of freedom from the crate arrived and Hero was free at last!

He is fine now and you would never know he ever had a problem. No mobility issues and he romps with the best of them. He does have a pin in his leg though – quite the nuisance if he ever goes through a metal detector! !

When Martin and Kristen first met two year old Hero they weren’t too sure about whether he was the right dog for them. He had very little training and was very exuberant. Imagine a two year Golden with minimal activity for months! Exuberant probably doesn’t begin to describe it. But they took the chance and his cuteness and niceness started coming through and they have absolutely no regrets. He has bonded with his new buddy, another male dog, and loves to run, play ball, wrestle and retrieve. He also loves riding in the car with his head out of the window. The family cat is also very interesting to Hero and he watches him carefully. Hero has integrated very nicely into the family routine. !

Hero enjoys his daily walks but is really interested in water. The Moons have a pool but they have not let him in it yet because they want to be sure that he doesn’t get in the habit of jumping in when they aren’t there to observe him. You know how golden retrievers are – can’t get enough of that water! !

He actually ENJOYS lightning and loud fireworks! He is so curious and he watches the sky and maybe sees all of the fun and fireworks in his future with his new family!



GRR Monthly Status Report: June 27th - July 27th


Came into care: 17-093 Envie, 17-094 Cara, 17-095 Abigail, 17-096 Kali, 17-097 Lucy Lou, 17-098 Chase, 17-099 Norman, 17-100 McKinley, 17-101 Lacey, 17-102 Brave, 17-103 Harvey, 17-104 Banks

Adopted: 17-051 Pippa, 17-071 Copeland

Currently in Foster Care: 37 - 16 available/available soon, 11 foster pend adoptions, 10 permanent fosters


Breakfast Taco Time
Jackie McGrath

It's Breakfast Taco time!!! Harper (white dog) is a girl after my own heart. She has her eye on the cinnamon roll. (Left to right: Wyatt, Lucy, Brodie, Harper and Frankie) Brinley is home snuggled up in bed with Avery, waiting for her bacon to be delivered.


Tails & Trails…

Discovering Austin’s outdoors with my Golden gal!

Jen Micyk and Kerbey

Flint Rock Loop Trail and Williamson Creek Overlook
McKinney Falls State Park
5808 McKinney Falls Parkway
Austin, TX 78744

We are so very fortunate to have a number of state parks in close proximity to us and we like to take advantage of the trails and nature they provide. If you don’t already have one, a state park pass is a great way to support our park system while getting you access to the parks for one yearly fee (~$70 I believe). McKinney Falls State Park is one that we used to visit more frequently when we first moved to Austin twelve years ago, but had fallen off of our radar in more recent years. We were excited to discover on our latest visit that the park had added a couple of trails since we were there last. As with all state parks, dogs are required to be on leash at all times within the park, though certainly you’ll still see some dogs off-leash back on the trails.

This go-round we hiked the new Flint Rock Loop Trail and Williamson Creek Overlook Trail which you can only get to by hiking a portion of the Homestead Trail (which is a great loop to hike by itself- 3.1 miles long and is a great loop for beginner mountain bikers as well). Onion Creek and Williamson Creek run through this park and join together just before flowing into awesome water features and over a rock shelf to create a great waterfall. There are usually people enjoying the water hole below the falls. In order to get to the trails you have to cross the large rock shelf where the water flows so you can expect to have some wet feet if you go when the water is up. If you want to shorten your distance, just sticking to the Flint Rock Loop Trail will still give you nice hike.

One of the things I love about these trails is the wooden bridges - why am I such a sucker for these things??? They’re all new and in good shape, covering a few streams and soggy sections along the way. The trail itself is pretty gentle and easy going. As with all of our favorite trails, there are plenty of water spots for your pup to enjoy at this park which makes it good choice during our hot summer days. If you visit the park site you’ll see plenty of photos and you can look at the trail maps there - there’s even a bonus paved trail if you need that on wetter days. And if you want to expand your adventures, like the park’s Facebook page - they often post about events such as moonlight hikes and geocaching classes (I don’t work for the parks, I just think they’re awesome!). Hope to see you on the trails!

Flint Rock Loop Trail and Williamson Creek Overlook


Help Wanted

Video producer:
Knowledgeable of at least one application to produce videos from existing dog profiles and photos. Used during fundraising campaigns and events.

Newsletter contributor:
1 hour/month. Contacting adoptive families and foster families for features, external subjects. Collect or write articles and solicit for photos. Time volunteered flexible. As little as 1 hour a month depending on how much you want to do.

Website content coordinator: Interface with GRR Board, external vendor and server admin. for fundraising campaigns and events. Hours: On average about 3-4 hours a week. Basic HTML proficiency.

Contact Dawn Marie Rae for more details.


Kicking Cancer's Tail! Part Two
Amy Sebesta

As you read last month, our 6 yr old GRR girl Maya 14-117 has been diagnosed with lymphoma. We have officially finished two (4) week long rounds of the CHOP chemotherapy protocol at Austin Veterinary Emergency & Specialists (AVES) with Dr. Timothy Stein. CHOP is nothing short of a commitment. I will follow up more on that in Part III of the series. The good news is that the treatment has enabled Maya to shine back to her usual silly self. And, unlike in people and many thanks to the excellent care at AVES, the chemo is essentially side effect free. To the masses, her cancer is invisible, but for us, it has been time to get tactical.

In the spirit of looking at what we could control, we have been focused on diet. Upon diagnosis, she quickly lost nearly 15 pounds. Maya really didn’t have those pounds to lose. Beyond her swollen lymph nodes - which quickly disappeared by week 4 of treatment - her boney physique has been an annoying reminder of her unwelcome guest, cancer. After reading online, I quickly determined that carbs are candy for cancer. Therefore, I proudly announced to my husband, Stephen, that I will be making all homemade food for Maya going forward. After two weeks and over 15 pounds of turkey and chicken baked, poached, and pan prepared with no weight gain, I realized I just could not keep up with her stomach which has turned into a blackhole for food. So, we have settled on a happy medium of about 1/2 high quality limited ingredient food mixed with 1/2 homemade food. After about 8 weeks, we have regained about 5-8 pounds and best of all, Maya is officially in clinical remission!

Maya’s Cancer Blaster Diet*
  • 2 parts ground turkey balls or sliced chicken breast seasoned with some splashes of Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
  • 1 part plain broccoli, cauliflower rice or both
  • .5 part plain brown rice or steel cut oats
  • A touch of low or no salt chicken bone broth
  • .5 part blueberries
    • (Smash all non meat ingredients for best absorption.)
  • Cottage Cheese or Cream Cheese spread as a topper like icing for weight gaining purposes
At mealtime, once per day add:
  • Grizzly Krill Oil
  • Grizzly Pollack Oil
  • Top Secret Ingredient Minimize Chemo GI Side Effects with Purina Fortiflora Probiotics - easy to buy online at I’ve come to realize having probiotics on hand for those with sensitive tummies, on antibiotics, or otherwise with the runs is a dog first-aid essential.
*The one restriction that Dr Stein put on her diet was no raw diets while immunocompromised on chemo. These diets have really taken off in our local stores. Remember - frozen foods are also likely raw.

Next time, I’ll talk more about taking your dog through chemo. Turns out, kicking cancer in the tail takes a fairly significant commitment on a variety of levels. Thank you to the GRR family for the ongoing support and well wishes.

#TeamMaya #CancerSucks #AVES


Adoption Spotlight: Scooby 17-031
Amy Craig

Scooby-Do 17-031
In case you missed the Incredible Scooby in the June newsletter, we wanted to remind you all of the absolute joy of this “not so Golden” GRR rescued dog.

Scooby came into GRR in awful shape. So awful that we weren’t sure exactly WHAT he was. At first glance the GRR representative saw the dire shape this boy was in and although he didn’t look 100% Golden, knew we had to help. It’s just the “GRR Way”.

Once Scooby came in to our care, we learned he was heartworm positive, had a severe skin infection due to Demodectic Mange, was positive for 3 different tick borne diseases, and just looked like he felt terrible. In true Gold Ribbon Rescue fashion, our team of volunteers and veterinarians worked together to get this boy all the medical care and TLC he needed.

After a few months of veterinary care, training, and plenty of love and structure from his GRR foster family, Scooby is completely healed and is learning to be a model canine citizen! He just finished his heartworm treatment, and is ready for his forever home!

Who would turn down this awesome face? Scooby has an exuberant passion for life, and loves playing with other dogs. He’s still under 2 years old, so his forever family will be one who is fairly active; walking, swimming, maybe even trips to the lake! Scooby enjoys the water, does great on car rides, enjoys playing with balls (but sometimes a bug or stick or another dog will distract him!) and absolutely LOVES his humans. He would outshine all of his classmates in training classes, as he is one smart cookie! He’s a very fast learner, but still has a few things to learn. He’s a gentle boy when it’s time to come inside and settle in for the evening, and knows when it’s bedtime and sleeps quietly throughout the entire night.

Because of his unadulterated joy for life, his energy may be too much for younger kids. He has also shown that he would most likely chase a cat, so a home with cats may not be best for Mr. Scooby (or the cats!). His current foster family has many dogs and he has learned who he can play with, and who he can’t.

Mr. Scooby-Do is hoping for a family who has at least one other dog that loves to play, has lots of hugs and kisses to give, and he will promise to entertain you with his adorable personality! Will you be his forever family?

Think Scooby is the guy for you? Please visit How To Adopt for more information about adoption. This same page also includes the link to an adoption application.


Thoughts, Prayers and Remembrance

Our Rainbow Bridge: (since August 1st 2017)

Rest in peace, our friends and companions...


If you would like to submit a memorial of your dog, click here.


In Loving Memory - Shelby (Marlon 07-037)
Michael Neeley

Today we said goodbye to our big boy Shelby (GRR # 07-037 Marlon). Thank you Gold Ribbon Rescue for the ten wonderful years we got to spend with him. Our grief is profound...but the love and gratitude we share for Shelby lives on.


Selective Sleeping...!


Where Are They Now? Kika 17-053
Dori Olsen with Anthony and Lyndsey Garcia

Kika (who is now Wren) is a “senior” gal that her loving new owners think is about eight years old. Originally her age was given as 11 or 12 years but the Garcias have a very knowledgeable friend who puts her younger, something every lady “of a certain age” appreciates. She has been with her new family for about a month now and is settling in nicely with no problem. She is very calm and exhibits only a slight nervousness when those big booms in the sky are going.

While I was talking with the Garcias, they were enjoying a beautiful Sunday at an outdoor coffee establishment with Kika. She is very loving but somewhat fearful of men and wary of strangers. She warms up after a while and has been in the park with a group of friends and other dogs and did just fine. .

Kika lived outside at her previous family home so she is absolutely loving being inside. She smiles constantly and is very attached to her new family – definitely a people person. She also loves her new sister, a Bichon Frise, and is very protective of her.

“So Kika, want to go for a walk?” Wiggles, excitement and she whines like a seal to get the family moving. She loves her roughly one mile walk and is a dream walking – no pulling or dragging. She also likes to swim – a true Golden trait.

Now this silly girl only wants to go to the bathroom once a day in the evening. She is just not interested in any other time of day or frequency. The vet says she is fine and very healthy, so they just go with it.

And finally, Kika has a white spot between her eyes that the family calls her “unicorn spot.” The hair sticks out between each toe, giving her a very fantastical appearance and makes her absolutely adorable.

Congratulations to Anthony, Lyndsey and Kika for finding each other and becoming the absolutely perfect family for each other.


Home Alone...But For How Long???

Louie and Sophie Weiner

Having a dog means having a schedule. You arrange work hours, social outings, and errands based on when you can get home. If you’re anything like me, you sometimes skip a night out because you feel guilty leaving your dog home alone.

Dogs enjoy the company of their humans, but that doesn’t mean leaving them home alone is bad or dangerous. Read on to learn how long you can leave a dog alone, and tips to make their time at home safe and enriching.

Consider the bladder

The first question most people ask about leaving their dog home alone is: how long can my dog last without a bathroom break? According to experts, dogs generally need to pee between three to five times a day. But the timing of potty breaks varies from dog to dog, and puppies and seniors need more frequent breaks.

How long can a dog “hold it” before needing a potty break? Here are common time limits for dogs of different life stages:

  • Puppies: one hour per every month of age (so a three month old puppy can wait three hours)
  • Adult dogs age one year and up: up to eight hours, but ideally no more than six
  • Senior dogs age eight and up: depending on size and health, anywhere from two to six hours

Of course, the above estimates vary depending on a dog’s size, health, and habits. But any dog forced to hold their urine for too long is at risk for urinary tract infection, stones, or crystals. Plus, holding urine for too long is just plain uncomfortable, and can lead to accidents in the house.

For safety and comfort’s sake, provide a potty break every four to six hours. Standard work days are eight to ten hours long, so if you can’t swing home at lunch to take the dog out, hire a dog walker for worry-free care.

For safety and comfort’s sake, provide a potty break ever four to six hours.

Exercise counts

Beyond potty breaks, your dog needs physical activity during the day. Whatever your dog’s energy and fitness level, exercise helps them:

  • Stay healthy
  • Digest meals
  • Stimulate their mind
  • Burn calories

Avoid boredom
(and boredom-induced destructive behaviors)

Individual exercise needs vary depending on your dog’s age, breed, and health level. Herding and sporting dogs often require more intense and lengthy activity; lower-energy breeds and older dogs can do with significantly less. But every dog needs to stretch its legs a couple times a day.

In general, healthy dogs need about 60 minutes of moderate activity every day, but it doesn’t have to be continuous. Before you leave your dog home alone for a length of time, spend 20-30 minutes taking them for a brisk walk or play session. Tire them out so their alone time will be more relaxing.

Then, a midday romp (with you or a dog walker) will help break up the day, and of course, spend quality time together when you’re home for the night!

If your dog acts anxious or destructive after spending time alone, it’s possible they need more frequent and intense exercise. Speak to your vet to determine an ideal fitness routine for your pet.

In general, healthy dogs need about 60 minutes of moderate activity every day.

Mental activity matters, too

Beyond how long a dog can hold it, or how much exercise a dog needs each day, mental activity is important to keep your best friend healthy, happy, and well-behaved. Puppies and young dogs need more enrichment than adults, but all dogs need a certain amount of mental simulation throughout the day. Without it, they may become bored, and even destructive when left alone.

Whether it’s a training session, exciting neighborhood walk, puzzle feeder, or a round of indoor games, enrichment activities help keep your dog healthy, and balance out the time she spends alone.

To continue the article visit


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Bad Food For Your Furry Loved One!!!
Veterinary & Aquatic Services Department, Drs. Foster & Smith

Alcoholic beverages
Can cause intoxication, seizures, low blood sugar, arrhythmias, coma, and death.

The leaves, seeds, fruit, and bark contain persin, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea.

Bones from fish, poultry, or other meat sources
Can cause obstruction or laceration of the digestive system.

Cat food
Generally too high in protein and fats.

Chocolate, coffee, tea, and other caffeine
Contain caffeine, theobromine, or theophylline, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea and be toxic to the heart and nervous systems.

Citrus oil extracts
Can cause vomiting.

Fat trimmings
Can cause pancreatitis.

Fish (raw, canned or cooked)
If fed exclusively or in high amounts can result in a thiamine (a B vitamin) deficiency leading to loss of appetite, seizures, and in severe cases, death.

Grapes, raisins and currants
Contain an unknown toxin, which can damage the kidneys. There have been no problems associated with grape seed extract.

Unknown compound causes panting, increased heart rate, elevated temperature, seizures, and death.

Human vitamin supplements containing iron
Can damage the lining of the digestive system and be toxic to the other organs including the liver and kidneys.

Macadamia nuts
Contain an unknown toxin, which can affect the digestive and nervous systems and muscle.

Can depress the nervous system, cause vomiting, and changes in the heart rate.

Milk and other dairy products
Some adult dogs and cats may develop diarrhea if given large amounts of dairy products.

Moldy or spoiled food, garbage
Can contain multiple toxins causing vomiting and diarrhea and can also affect other organs.

Can contain toxins, which may affect multiple systems in the body, cause shock, and result in death.

Onions and garlic (raw, cooked, or powder)
Contain sulfoxides and disulfides, which can damage red blood cells and cause anemia. Cats are more susceptible than dogs.

Seeds can cause intestinal obstruction and enteritis.

Pits from peaches and plums
Can cause obstruction of the digestive tract.

Raw eggs
Contain an enzyme called avidin, which decreases the absorption of biotin (a B vitamin). This can lead to skin and hair coat problems as well as neurologic abnormalities. Raw eggs may also contain Salmonella.

Raw meat
May contain bacteria such as Salmonella and E. coli, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea.*

Rhubarb leaves
Contain oxalates, which can affect the digestive, nervous, and urinary systems.

If eaten in large quantities it may lead to electrolyte imbalances, seizures, and even death.

Can become trapped in the digestive system; called a "string foreign body."

Sugary foods
Can lead to obesity, dental problems, and possibly diabetes mellitus.

Table scraps (in large amounts)
Table scraps are not nutritionally balanced. They should never be more than 10% of the diet. Fat should be trimmed from meat; bones should not be fed.

Contains nicotine, which affects the digestive and nervous systems. Can result in rapid heartbeat, collapse, coma, and death.

Yeast dough
Can expand and produce gas in the digestive system, causing pain and possible rupture of the stomach or intestines.

Xylitol (artificial sweetener)
Can cause very low blood sugar (hypoglycemia), which can result in vomiting, weakness and collapse. In high doses can cause liver failure and death.

*We suggest that people considering a raw diet for their pet educate themselves thoroughly regarding the safe handling and preparation of raw ingredients, and the proper balance of nutrients required to maintain their pet's health.


Orvis and the Morris Animal Foundation

Orvis store event in the Arboretum August 12th: Orvis partners with the Morris Animal Foundation and the Golden Retriever canine cancer study August 12th to show off our most favored of breeds!

Shown here is Max (light-colored) and puppy Hudson at Orvis.