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May 2011

ReTail Scene - Car Thermometer for Your Dog's Safety

TooHotSpotWindowThermometer It's a sad fact: Hot cars kill dogs. With the summer approaching, it's especially important to be aware of just how quickly a car can heat up. If you're dog is left unattended inside the car, it can spell disaster, even if the windows are left partially open. Temperatures are much higher inside an uncooled car than they are outside, and they can rise very quickly.

Here's a handy device called "Too Hot for Spot" that reads the temperature inside your car and displays it in an easy to read format -- on a thermometer that attaches to the inside of your car window. It's a good reminder that the car is no place for your pet when the temperature is too hot.

Check it out here at

Saving Money on Pet Costs

Dog with money With the spiraling cost of both food and gas these days, Fido is just one more rising cost center in the family budget. While you never want to skimp on quality when it comes to veterinary care or doggie nutrition, there are some ways you can save money and keep costs in line. offers some good advice in two articles, both linked below:

11 Ways to Save on Pet Costs
This article has some useful tips on how to save money on food, supplies and healthcare. One smart idea every dog owner should take advantage of is the frequent buyer club, available at both PetSmart and PETCO. These programs are free and offer discounts and gifts that help reduce your overall cost. Another tip: Comparison shop for such items as flea/tick prevention, heartworm prevention, and medications online. There are numerous discounters who can beat retail prices, and many offer free shipping over a certain dollar amount.

Saving Money on Vet Bills
Many good ideas are included here for keeping the cost of veterinary care to a minimum. Obviously, prevention is key so you don't have to make frequent vet visits. That means providing your dog with proper nutrition (both for healthy body and teeth); using treatments to prevent fleas, ticks, and heartworm; keeping an eye out for dental disease which can be costly if treatment is required; getting your pet spayed or neutered, which has health benefits; and considering pet insurance, particularly for older dogs.

Dog Mushing with a Dog-Powered Scooter

Dogscooter Ever dream about competing with your dog in the Iditarod -- the great dog sled race? Here's something you can do that may not come close to that experience, but it will give you the sense of what it's like to do dog mushing.

Mark Schuette in Oregon has invented the unique dog-powered scooter, dog-powered trike, and dog-powered skateboard. He says they are the first dog-powered devices that place a dog behind the steering wheel and give humans precision steering control of the dog with virtually no training. As a result, any dog in good shape and any rider can get the experience of dog mushing.

Dog trike These products are ideal for high drive dogs of 35 lbs. or more, although Mark has custom fit small dogs too. "If they pull on a leash then they are good candidates for my systems," says Mark.

Take a look at all the models available at They are safe and more practical than using a bicycle for unlimited exercise with excellent control.

Sounds like just the thing for a day of fun and excitement for you and your dog (or dogs)!

AKC Agility Trials, Fletcher, May 27-29

Satchmo Dog agility is a beloved sport by dogs, their handlers, and spectators. Now you have an opportunity to watch American Kennel Club agility trials, free of charge, from 8 AM to 3 PM each day on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, May 27, 28, and 29. Sponsored by the Blue Ridge Agility Club, the event will be held at the WNC Agricultural Center McGough Arena in Fletcher (across from the Asheville Regional Airport).

More than 400 dogs from throughout the Southeast will compete at various levels of difficulty, against each other on a timed basis. About 70 AKC registered breeds will compete in the trials.

Watch as dogs and their handlers navigate obstacle courses, everything from platforms to weave poles to tunnels. It's an experience you won't want to miss (but please leave your own dog at home).

For additional information about the trials and agility in general, visit the Blue Ridge Agility Club's website:

Photo: Blue Ridge Agility Club

Prestige Subaru/ACN Adoptathon-Asheville, May 21, 22

Adoptathon poster ACN (Animal Compassion Network) will host the 12th Annual Prestige Subaru Spring Pet Adoptathon on Saturday and Sunday, May 21 and 22 from 11 AM to 5 PM. This year's event will once again take place in the Province 620 Restaurant parking lot on Hendersonville Road in Asheville across from Pet Harmony, ACN's adoption center and retail store for second chance pets, as well as inside Pet Harmony.


Animal Compassion Network will join forces with many other rescue groups and shelters from around the area for this pet adoption extravaganza, located at 803 Fairview Street, less than a half-mile south of the I-40 off ramp and just off Hendersonville Rd.

There will also be fun activities for you and your dog -- a Ken and Tammy Show live radio remote from our media sponsors 96.5 The Mix and 98.1 the River, homemade doggie (and people) ice cream from The Hop, a tour of the newest Subaru models, an "Ask the Trainer" booth with Dog-Ed and Pet Behavior Aid, a low-cost shot clinic, paw print painting, free "paw"dicures, a do-it-yourself doggie wash, a meet and greet with mascot Scooby Neuter, free pet portraits and much more! Stop by if you can and support lots of animal welfare organizations all in one place.

New Location for Greenville Humane Society

Greenville Humane The Greenville (SC) Humane Society has relocated to 305 Airport Road, near Haywood Mall, in Greenville. The Society's low-cost spay/neuter clinic opened at the new location on Monday, May 16, and adoptions will be available at the new location on Monday, May 23.

The centrally located facility will enable the community to access the Greenville Humane Society's expanded service offerings, including enhanced animal adoptions, an expanded low-cost spay/neuter clinic and foster program designed to safeguard animals that are not yet ready for adoption.

In 2009 alone, Greenville Humane Society found homes for more than 5,300 animals, performed nearly 11,000 spay/neuter surgeries and fostered 1.350 animals back to health. The Society is proud to manage the largest no-kill shelter in the area and operate the only low-cost Spay/Neuter Clinic in Greenville.

The general public and members of the business community are invited to participate in in the Society's "For the Animals and Our Community Campaign" that will help fund the new facility and eventually turn it into a campus with dog parks, trails and an education center. Visit for additional information.

Take a Hike!

Dogsontrail-sandburghome The Spring is an ideal time to take a hike with your dog in the Carolina mountains.

For some great local spots, be sure to check out our POOCH PATHS section where you'll find some easy and fun walks and hikes. If you're feeling ambitious, take a look at the CANINE CRUISIN' section to discover some hiking and recreational opportunities a little further afield.

Also check out the website,, for links to state parks, forests, lakes, and more.

For North Carolina hikes go to:

For South Carolina hikes go to:

Grass Roots Anti-Puppy Mill Campaign

Puppymilldog Puppy mills continue to be one of the dirty little secrets behind the pet store industry. Puppies sold in pet stores typically come from puppy mills, not legitimate breeders. The USDA is charged with regulating puppy mills, but they do a woefully inadequate job. Conditions at puppy mills are truly horrible. States often step in to pass their own puppy mill laws (North Carolina has not passed a law yet, but one is in the works). Unfortunately, not all states take this action, and even those that do sometimes fall short.

That's why it's important for everyone who cares about animals to support rescue organizations, animal shelters, adoption centers, and legitimate breeders as places to obtain dogs instead of pet stores.

It's also important to speak out. A number of nonprofit organizations support national and local efforts against puppy mills, including:
The ASPCA - Puppy mill information
Best Friends - "Puppies Aren't Products" campaign
Humane Society of the United States - Puppy mill issue

Here's a grass roots effort we learned about that shows you even a single individual can make a difference. Kathleen Fitzgerald, a dog shelter volunteer in New York, decided to take matters into her own hands by writing a passionate letter about puppy mills and sending it out to over 4,500 animal lovers and organizations. Carolina Mountain Dog applauds Kathleen for speaking out, and we're providing a link to her letter here so you can print it out and pass it along if you so choose: 

Obsessive Paw Licking

Dog_licking_paw The following is a guest post by Deane Giordano, owner of Lucky Dog Delivers.
You can read her blogs at

Twice in the past week, clients have asked me for help with dogs who are obsessive paw lickers: Did I have some kind of yucky-tasting spray to put on the paws or some dietary insight about the issue or anything at all to contribute to the conversation. I could sense their frustration. I do have yucky sprays, but spraying a dog's already inflamed and irritated paw did not seem appropriate. So I went to work to find out what would be appropriate for this not uncommon and terribly misunderstood problem. Here is a very condensed version of what I learned from the site
In a nutshell, stress, be it internal or external; allergies, parasites, environmental factors or psychological events.
A Vicious Cycle
  • It starts with a trigger (see below), followed by licking.
  • The symptoms are treated with steroids, cones, antibiotics, sprays, socks, etc.
  • These measures cause further stress (Have you seen a dog in a cone or elizabethan collar? Stressful AND demoralizing) and don't address the cause of the problem.
  • The dog continues to lick whenever possible, causing more damage to the skin and more incentive to keep licking.
  • And the cycle continues.
Paw-licking can be triggered by nutritional issues; pesticides in and around the home including flea medications; insects such as fleas or mites; and plants and grasses; and emotional stress.
What Helps? goes into a lot of detail about how to help your dog, everything from having the vet help to identify the trigger, to using a special cream, to applying chamomile or sage tea to the affected area. There is good information about the psychological aspects of obsessive paw licking and how to address that with training, play, and mental stimulation.

I really encourage you to visit The information in my post is just intended to get you thinking and to show you that this is a problem that won't be solved with cortisone shots. Once again, it's a complex problem that deserves a holistic approach, and that will strengthen the bond between you and your dog.

Good luck!

Photo credit:

Support Avery County's new Adoption Center

Avery County Avery County’s new Adoption and Humane Education Center is currently under construction on New Vale Road behind Ingles in Newland. The dedication of the new facility is planned for 11/11/11.  Contributions toward the matching grant, including the purchase of pavers in honor of or in memory of a family member, favorite friend or cherished pet, may be made on the organization’s website at  Purchase a paver in honor of a favorite friend or in memory of a cherished pet and the Avery County Humane Society will engrave it with your message and install it on the path leading to the front door of the new center. For more information, phone (828) 733-9265.

 The Society's Paws & Claws Resale Shop is located at 251 New Vale Road (behind Ingles) in Newland. Hours are 10 AM to 4 PM Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Anyone with new and lightly used items to donate should contact store manager Patti Manning at (828) 733-0025 to make arrangements.

Oconee Humane Society Fly-In, May 7

Fly-in The Oconee (SC) Humane Society will hold its annual Fly-In fundraiser on Saturday, May 7 from 10 AM to 3 PM (rain date, May 14) at the Oconee County Regional Airport. The event features antique airplanes and cars, hot rods, helicopters, sky divers, and rides and admission is free. There will be concessions, a book signing by Betsy Byars, and much more. All proceeds from the event will be used to support the Oconee Humane Society.

For more information, visit


Swim with Your Dog Day - May 8

Swimwithyourdog Lucky dogs - and their people - will be at Camp Rockmont in Black Mountain on Sunday, May 8th for Swim With Your Dog Day! 

From 1pm-6pm, two and four legged guests will enjoy pet related vendors, an agility course, photographer on site, tasty food and The Hop ice cream - all on the shore of beautiful Lake Eden. Lots of fun for family and pets! $10 per dog, proceeds benefit Brother Wolf Animal Rescue and Chain-Free Asheville. Sponsored by Bone-A-Fide Bakery & Pet Boutique. Call (828) 669-0706 or visit for more information.

"Bone-E-Fit," Anderson, SC, May 5

Bone e Fit On May 5 at 7 PM, a "Bone-E-Fit" will be sponsored by Anderson Voices for Animals at the Woodburn Historic House in Pendleton, SC to raise funds for three essential programs to help save animals' lives: the Anderson Voices for Animals spay/neuter program, the Anderson County Fix-A-Pet fund that provides subsidies for spay/neuter for low income pet owners, and Freedom Train transports, an Upstate organization that relocates pets for adoption to areas with lower animal populations and higher demand for adopted animals.

Tickets are $50 each, which includes dinner, music by the Back 9 Band, and a silent auction.

Tickets for the Bone-E-Fit are available through, by calling (864)226-0025, or at the door the night of the event. Advance tickets are also available at Phil Jewelers, Draisen Edwards Music, the Animal Hospital at Liberty Highway and Kitchen Emporium.