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March 2013

February 2013

Sarge's 7th Annual Photo Contest

ScreenHunter_02 Feb. 11 12.06Sarge's Animal Rescue Foundation in Waynesville is sponsoring its 7th Annual Photo Contest. Categories are:

  • Dog
  • Puppy
  • Cat
  • Kitten
  • Other Pet
  • Sarge's Adoptions
  • Photographer Under 12
  • Super Shooters

Prizes will be awarded to first and second place in each category. Best in Show will also receive a special prize. There is a $10 entry fee per photo. Deadline for entries is Monday, March 25. An awards ceremony will be held on Saturday, April 13 at Bocelli's Italian Eatery. Visit for additional details or get the entry form here.

Protect Your Dog's Teeth from Disease

By Rose Springer for The Dog Daily

Protect Your Dog’s Teeth From Disease

Did you know that 80 percent of dogs show some sign of gum disease by the age of 3? The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) does, and that’s why they have declared February Pet Dental Health Month. “Veterinarians report that periodontal disease is the most commonly diagnosed health problem in dogs,” says Dr. Larry Corry, immediate past president of the AVMA. “This can lead to painful infections in the mouth, and in severe cases, these infections can spread and become life-threatening.” Below, dentists weigh in on how to identify and prevent dental problems in dogs.

At-home Assessment
Dr. Katy Nelson, a veterinarian who is also a member of the Iams Pet Wellness Council, suggests you quickly assess your dog’s mouth by looking at its gums: Healthy gums are pink as opposed to red, with no buildup of tartar along the gumline. Additionally, a healthy mouth does not produce horribly bad breath.

Additionally, your dog’s vet should do an oral exam at each annual visit, says Nelson. “In older dogs especially, they can get abscesses with no easily visible signs. A thorough assessment may require sedation.”

In-office Procedures
Dr. Linda DeBowes, a Seattle-based veterinarian, acknowledges that periodontal illness is often a silent disease. When your veterinarian diagnoses it in your dog, it’s because she has seen plaque, abscesses, loose teeth and lower-jaw fractures, which can occur with chronic dental problems. “At that point, we need a cleaning to get below the gumline, which requires anesthesia,” says DeBowes. Once under, your dog’s teeth will be cleaned with an ultrasonic scaler or a hand scaler. The veterinarian will look for loose teeth, deep dental pockets, exposed roots or other signs of disease. Some teeth may need to be extracted.

Tooth Disease Prevention
“Once there is disease there, it’s painful and costly to deal with,” says Dr. Trisha Joyce of NYC Veterinary Specialists. “But you can protect your dog’s teeth just like you protect your own, with daily brushing and regular checkups.” She adds: “The only difference between your dental health and your dog’s is that he can’t do it for himself. His owner has to watch out for him.”

Dr. Brook Niemiec, a board-certified veterinary dental specialist in San Diego, suggests beginning a dental routine with your dog as soon as possible and using the following methods for brushing:

1. Start with a soft toothbrush and flavored toothpaste made for pets. Human toothpaste contains detergents that may cause stomach upset. “I don’t recommend the fingertip brushes for two reasons,” says Niemiec. “The bristles are not very effective at cleaning, and this puts the pet owner’s finger at risk for a bite from even the most placid animal.”

2. Go slowly and be very positive, using food treats if necessary. Place the brush at a 45-degree angle to the gum line. Brush in a circular motion, with a firm stroke away from the tooth. Try to reach all tooth surfaces, but concentrate on the outside surface.

3. For puppies, introduce the brush at around 6 months -- and be consistent. Animals like routines, so making brushing a habit it will be easier on both of you.

In addition to brushing, foods and chew toys can help maintain your dog’s dental health. Nelson advises looking for a food or treat with a seal of approval from the Veterinary Oral Health Council -- a VOHC seal. “If it’s got the seal,” she says, “it’s guaranteed to be a good dental treat or food.” Look for treats that contain sodium hexametaphosphate (SHMP), which lives in the saliva for up to 12 hours, breaking up plaque. Chew toys, such as a rawhide or a Kong, help deal with plaque mechanically. While your pet chomps, tartar is broken down.

Finally, keep in mind Nelson’s three D’s of doggie dental health: daily brushing, dentistry and diet. Follow these and your dog can sport pearly whites throughout the rest of its life.

Rose Springer is a New York City-based freelance writer and frequent contributor to The Dog Daily. She has been writing about pets for a decade.

Dine to be Kind, Feb. 26, Asheville

ScreenHunter_01 Jan. 07 17.11Tuesday February 26 is "World Spay Day," and on that day, over fifty area restaurants will be contributing a portion of their day’s proceeds to Animal Compassion Network’s highly successful spay and neuter assistance program. The commemorative Tenth Annual Dine to Be Kind will take place on National Spay Day as part of a national campaign to promote the life-saving benefits of spay and neuter programs for dogs and cats.

All proceeds from Dine to be Kind will benefit ACN’s Betty Fund Spay/Neuter Program which was established in 2000 in honor of a two-year-old stray Golden Retriever mix. Betty gave birth to 18 puppies in just one year. It wasn't until Animal Compassion Network became involved that this distressing cycle stopped. Betty's last litter of eight pups was rescued from the mud underneath a trailer and found forever homes through ACN. Betty was also rescued, spayed, and placed with a loving family. The cost of this one rescue alone was staggering; hundreds of dollars were spent in medical expenses, food, and care for the dog and her eight pups. In response, ACN started the Betty Fund spay/neuter voucher program designed to help end the euthanasia of healthy animals by stopping pet overpopulation at its source. The Betty Fund pays all or most of the entire cost of the spay/neuter surgery for pets belonging to families in need. Since the program began, ACN has assisted in the spaying or neutering of more than 10,000 Western North Carolina cats and dogs.

For more information including participating restaurants, visit

Stop the Barking-Asheville, Feb. 21

ScreenHunter_03 Jan. 13 16.13Pet Behavior Aid will hold a free session to help dog owners deal with barking. If you tried everything you know to do do to stop your dog from barking so much, then this session is for you. Learn the different types of barks, what they mean, and creative ways to stop the barking.

The session will be held on Thursday, February 21 from 7 to 8 PM at the Asheville Humane Society Adoption & Education Center, 14 Forever Friend Lane, Asheville (behind Harmony Motors, off Brevard and Pond Roads, near the Farmers Market). Humans only, please.

For more information, visit or call (828) 707-0644. This session is sponsored by Pet Behavior Aid, an organization dedicated to to increasing the retention of companion animals in their homes in Western North Carolina.

Super-dog Sniffs Out Hospital Infections

Carolina Mountain Dog has periodically reported on dogs who accomplish miraculous things for humans through their sense of smell. We recently learned about Cliff, a two year old beagle, who is working at a hospital in Amsterdam, Holland. Cliff detects a common hospital infection, clostridium, ("C diff") simply by smelling around a patient's hospital bed. Cliff is trained to sit by a patient if he sniffs C diff so a medical professional can take quick action.

Cliff's success rate is almost 100 percent. His abilities are helping avoid serious outbreaks because detection can occur in a matter of minutes. Researchers believe other dogs can be trained to sniff out "superbugs" like C diff that wreak havoc in hospitals. Watch Cliff's story in the accompanying video.


"My Furry Valentine" Adoptions! Feb. 15, 16

ScreenHunter_01 Feb. 06 12.55Are you looking for love in all the wrong places? Time to look in the right place... at Asheville Humane Society's Adoption Center!

And the right time to adopt a "furry Valentine" is Friday and Saturday, February 15 and 16 from 10 AM to 6 PM.  All animals age 6 months or older are available at the very special adoption fee of just $14 each. The love is included at no extra charge!

To see all the cuties available for adoption, visit Or better yet, stop by the Adoption Center, 14 Forever Friend Lane, Asheville (off Brevard and Pond Roads, behind Harmony Motors near the WNC Farmers Market) to pick out an adorable, lovable, adoptable pet. This is the right place to find the love of your life!

Photo: Asheville Humane Society

"Pet Pageant" Photo Contest Supports World Spay Day

ScreenHunter_01 Feb. 11 11.55In honor of World Spay Day on February 26, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) is holding a "World Spay Day 2013 Pet Pageant," an online photo pageant. 

Pet owners may submit a photo to compete in both the Judges' Choice Awards and Popular Pet Awards for the ultimate title: Miss or Mister World Spay Day 2013. Entering the Main Pageant category is easy and free.

Simply upload a digital photo of your pet and tell HSUS a little about him or her, then share your photo far and wide to get votes. You can also enter as a memorial tribute to a pet who is no longer with us. 

For a small entry fee of $5 per category, pet owners can also enter additional optional categories under both the Judges' Choice Awards and the Popular Pet Awards, including Best Smile, Best Hair, Most Photogenic, Best Personality, and Ugly-Cute.

The contest runs through March 15 and prizes will be awarded. Find more details here.

NC Humane Lobby Day-Raleigh, March 6-Canceled

ScreenHunter_01 Jan. 22 14.39UPDATE: On February 14, Carolina Mountain Dog learned from Kimberley Alboum, NC State Director, State Affairs for the Humane Society of the United States, that this event has been canceled.

The Humane Society of the United States, the ASPCA, Susie’s Law, and North Carolina Voters for Animal Welfare invite all animal lovers to participate in the North Carolina Humane Lobby Day in Raleigh on Wednesday, March 6 from 8:30 AM to 4 PM. 

This is an exciting opportunity to meet directly with your elected officials or their staff about legislation that will significantly impact animals. There will be a briefing on tips for lobbying and an overview of pending animal legislation, which will prepare you to meet your elected officials and advocate for animals.

Join experts on puppy mills, exotics, sustainable farming, and more to learn about the issues in North Carolina. "Shelters We Love" awards will be given to four shelters at a press conference held at 9:30 a.m.

NC Humane Lobby Day takes place at the North Carolina Legislative Building Auditorium on the 3rd floor, 16 West Jones Street, Raleigh, NC 27601.

Go here to RSVP (strongly recommended).

Learn About Fostering at "Fosterpalooza"-Feb. 9

Foster photoIf you're looking for a great way to help save the lives of animals in Buncombe County, then why not consider fostering a cat or dog in your home?

To learn about the joys of fostering, come to "Fosterpalooza" on Saturday, February 9 from 1 to 3 PM at the Asheville Humane Society Adoption Center, 14 Forever Friend Lane in Asheville (off Brevard and Pond Roads, behind Harmony Motors near the WNC Farmers Market).

At this informative free session, you'll learn everything you need to know about fostering, and you'll get to meet and ask questions of volunteers who foster. The Asheville Humane Society foster program has grown by leaps and bounds and directly contributes to the thousands of animals' lives saved each year. Foster homes act as tiny satellite shelters, making it possible for Asheville Humane Society to free up space and keep adoptable animals flowing smoothly from the Shelter into the Adoption Center.

Be sure to tell anyone you know who may be interested in fostering to come to Fosterpalooza on February 9.

Photo: Asheville Humane Society

Free Fearful Dog Session-Asheville, Feb. 7

Be Brave

Pet Behavior Aid will hold a free information session, "Be Brave!," for owners of fearful dogs on Thursday, February 7, from 6 to 8 PM.

Topics include how to help your dog gain confidence, learning how to understand signs of anxiety and when to step in, how to prevent fear from becoming aggression, and fundamental techniques to help your "wallflower" blossom. The session will be held at the Asheville Humane Society Adoption and Education Center, 14 Forever Friend Lane (off Brevard and Pond Roads, behind Harmony Motors) in Asheville. Humans only, please.

For more information, visit or call (828) 707-0644. This session is sponsored by Pet Behavior Aid, an organization dedicated to to increasing the retention of companion animals in their homes in Western North Carolina.

Photo credit: Image: Stuart Miles /

Free Puppy Social-Asheville, Feb. 9

ScreenHunter_01 Jan. 23 09.08Your puppy needs socialization with other dogs to develop into a healthy, balanced pet. Join other puppy owners at a puppy social on Saturday, February 9 from 9 to 10 AM, at Asheville Humane Society's Adooption and Education Center, 14 Forever Friend Lane, Asheville (off Pond and Brevard Roads near the WNC Farmers Market).

Mingle with other puppy parents and get your training questions answered by certified trainers while your puppy romps with other pups and meets new and different people and things. Doggie treat bag and human treats provided for all participants.

- Ages 9-20 weeks of age
- Puppies must be healthy
- Must be in home at least 10 days prior to coming to social
- Must have at least 2 sets of vaccinations
(copy of vet records required)
- Rabies vaccine is required (16 weeks and older)

This is a FREE family friendly event, but space is limited! Reserve your puppy’s spot today. Call (828) 707-0644 or email to make a reservation. For more information visit

Image: Pet Behavior Aid

Blue Ridge Humane Society Renovates

ScreenHunter_02 Jan. 19 15.18Blue Ridge Animal Society in Hendersonville has renovated its facility to include a variety of improvements, including:

* renovated dog kennels with noise reduction panels, drainage system, and new roof
* free-roaming cat room with new kitty condos
* remodeled puppy room with new walls and floors
* refreshed public areas and work rooms.

The facility, located at 88 Centipede Lane in Hendersonville, was planning to reopen in late January. The non-profit organization also runs a Thrift Store at 1214 Greenville Highway which is open from 9:30 AM to 4:30 PM, Monday through Saturday. The Thrift Store accepts donations from 10 AM to 4 PM.

Contact the Blue Ridge Humane Society at (828) 692-8374 or visit 

Rabbies and Vaccination Clinic-Asheville, Feb. 2

Dog_being_vaccinatedNeed to get your dog vaccinated? Come to a low-cost shot clinic on Saturday, February 2 from 10 AM to 2 PM.

The clinic will be held at the Biltmore Square Mall, Brevard Road, at the former location of Garfield's restaurant. The clinic will offer low-cost rabbies and other vaccinations for both dogs and cats.

Microchips will also be offered for a small fee. For more information, call 828-761-2001, ext. 310.