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“I really believe that we have a responsibility, almost a sacred responsibility to the animals that share this planet with us” ~ Emmylou Harris
all is here! The days are getting shorter and the weather is getting cooler. It’s a good time to snuggle up with our pups and read the latest issue of Coastal Canine.
Dina Ruiz writes two stories in this issue. Both with a theme about compassion. Emmylou Harris is best known as an award-winning singer, songwriter and musician, but her other passion is dogs! Her love of dogs lead to her wonderful small but mighty rescue which operates on her property. Dina found out about Jackson’s story when talking with her own vet, Dr. Hettler. Dr. Hettler’s above and beyond act of compassion for Jackson and his plight moved Dina to learn more and share the story with our readers. Lee Asher was not a well-known celebrity when he made the decision to follow his dreams to advocate for shelter dogs full-time. That dream took him on the road, around the country, around Canada and finally to build his own sanctuary. Read about how The Asher House became a social media sensation and how Asher has helped hundreds and hundreds of dogs find their forever homes. Luna and Paprika are an integral part of their guardian’s life. Being deaf, Keith King has had hearing dogs to help him navigate in life. King rescued Luna and Paprika from a shelter, taught them American Sign Language and the rest is history. Read about how these pups enrich his life and how he changed theirs. Jeanelle Demers is an artist hailing from Portland, Maine. She started out painting human portraits but transitioned into pet portraits. Her pet portraits became so popular that she now specializes in that genre and makes a full-time living at it as well. Enjoy Jeanelle’s story and a sampling of her realistic and charming artwork.
Travel writer, Belinda Jones, sits down with adventurer and author Fern Watt to talk about her new book Adventure Dogs. This article and Fern’s new book might just inspire you and your pup to get out and find your own adventures!
Woofs! Scott and Carie Broecker
Publisher Editor/Photographer Graphic/Ad Design
CARIE BROECKER SCOTT BROECKER OLIVIA CAJEFE TRINIDAD
Copy Editor/Writer Marketing Executive
Please direct letters to the editor to: carie@ coastalcaninemag.com 831-601-4253 Please direct advertising inquiries to: michelle@ coastalcaninemag.com 831-539-4469 Subscriptions are $40 per year within the United States. To subscribe, please send check payable to Coastal Canine, P.O. Box 51846 Pacific Grove, CA 93950 or subscribe online at www. coastalcaninemag.com/homedelivery.html. Join our online mailing list at www. coastalcaninemag.com. Coastal Canine Issue #52, Fall 2021. Published quarterly (four issues per year). Copyright © 2021 Coastal Canine. All rights reserved. Coastal Canine is dedicated to the memory of Sunshine Broecker. Disclaimer: Coastal Canine is intended for entertainment purposes only. Please seek professional assistance from your veterinarian or qualified dog trainer before implementing any information acquired within these pages. Any resources mentioned are provided as a convenience to our readers, not as an endorsement.
Coastal Canine is printed on 30% recycled paper. All inks used contain a percentage of soy base. Our printer meets or exceeds all Federal Resource Conservation Recovery Act (RCRA) Standards. Our printer is a certified member of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) The FSC sets high standards that ensure forestry is practiced in an environmentally responsible, socially beneficial and economically viable way.
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cc | contents
Saving Jackson A dedicated local vet staff gives their best to save a badly injured pup. Dina Ruiz writes this miraculous story of love, hope, and healing.
Luna & Paprika A man in New Mexico communicates with his two pups in American Sign Language and shares an even greater nonvocal bond with them.
Country Music Legend and Animal Welfare Advocate Emmylou Harris Dina Ruiz interviewed this Country Music Legend and writes about her life with dogs and her devotion to helping less fortunate pups,
Dog Portraits by Jeanelle Demers Jeanelle is a portrait artist from the Portland, Maine area who now specializes in painting colorful dog portraits. Have a look at Jeanelle’s canvases and learn more about this talented artist.
Ready for Adventure Dog besotted British journalist
Belinda Jones interviews dog adventure writer Fern Watt about her upcoming book Adventure Dogs.
Lee Asher: Making a Difference After traveling the country with his pack of dogs, adoption advocate Lee Asher has big plans to help even more dogs.
On the Cover:
Frankie is a two-year-old female Schnauzer who was adopted from Saving Little Strays Rescue in Shadow Hills, CA. She is now living her best life in San Jose in a home she shares with her Terrier mix sister, Gracie, who is also a rescue. Her loving guardians bid on a chance for her to be on our Fall 2021 cover at this year’s Lucky Dog Gala for Peace of Mind Dog Rescue.
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C OA S TA L CA N I N E M AGA Z I N E A D D I R E C T O R Y AGILITY
HEALTH & WELLNESS
California Canine ....................... 49 From the Heart .......................... 61
Aguajito Veterinary Hospital.............3 Animal Cancer Center ....................31 Animal Hospital of Salinas ............61 Animal Hospital of Soquel ...............3 Blue Pearl ......................................18 Cottage Veterinary Care ..................4 Dentistry For Animals ...................42 Monterey Peninsula Veterinary Emergency & Specialty Clinic ........................................30 Natural Veterinary Therapy ............51 Ophthalmology for Animals ..........43 Pacific Grove Animal Hospital ..........................6 Pacific & Santa Cruz Veterinary Specialists ...............57 Steinbeck Country Small Animal ......................................19 Toro Park Animal Hospital .............59
Birchbark Foundation ................ 30 FOWAS ...................................... 60 Peace of Mind Dog Rescue ....... 62
ART Catherine Sullivan Art ................ 42
BOOKS Cats are People Too .................. 44 Dogs are People Too ................. 44 Legend ...................................... 42
CLEANING PRODUCTS Uricide ...................................... 58
DAY CARE Dawg Gone It ............................ 17 Paws at Play .............................. 61
GROOMING Shampoo Chez .......................... 43 Suds ‘N Scissors ....................... 18
Cypress Inn ...................................23
Seconds .................................... 60
BOARDING Dawg Gone It ............................ 17
Keller Williams, Rachelle Razzeca .................. 43 Keller Williams, Eddie Williams ...................... 55
California Canine ....................... 49 Del Monte Kennel Club .............. 62 Divine K9 ................................... 62 From The Heart Animal Behavior Counseling and Training ....... 61 Monterey Bay Dog Training Club......................... 62 Pam Jackson ............................. 61
WHALE WATCHING Monterey Bay Whale Watch ...... 19
RESTAURANTS Abalonetti .................................. 61
STORES Brad’s Barkery ........................... 56 Carmel Dog Shop ...................... 64 Earthwise Pet ............................ 60 Pet Pals ....................................... 2 The Raw Connection ................... 5
contact us at michelle@ coastalcaninemag.com or call (831) 539-4469
CALIFORNIA CANINE Ratna Anagol found her calling when she wasn’t expecting to look for one. She’d had a successful career working her way up in the corporate world and was an executive at McGraw-Hill when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008. It forced her to slow down—and it gave her perspective on life and what the future might hold. The puppy she and her family adopted at the time would play a major role in that! Ratna started taking the pup they named Prince to agility classes and realized she enjoyed it as much as he did. And it was important to her that her two young daughters could also participate since they had been the inspiration to get a dog. This new experience gave Ratna a direction that led her to become a certified professional trainer and open The Zoom Room in Pacific Grove in 2011.
Ratna felt limited staying “within the box” of operating a franchise. She wanted to expand her services beyond obedience training and socialization to another level, and in 2017 established California Canine. Her own training approach is more holistic, encouraging owners to consider and develop their dog’s individuality and abilities, and make sure the dog fits into their lifestyle and community. Her mission further evolved over the pandemic as people adopted dogs while isolated at home and then returned to work: to keep dogs in their homes and educate owners, ultimately preventing a cycle of more rescues.
California Canine 120 Central Avenue, Pacific Grove (831) 717-4579 californiacanine.us
As part of her commitment to connecting with the community, Ratna works closely with CHOMP’s Therapy Dog Program to incorporate it into California Canine’s prep workshop for therapy dog certification. Happily, Prince is still part of the family and going strong for his age. And Ratna is too in her calling.
Ratna Anagol with Pebbles
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cc | community board
CANINE WITH BOW TIE Send us photos of your dogs sporting an accessory bow tie. The Etsy website has an endless selection of them, including female-dog bow ties (a bit larger and worn on the side). Email photo (at least 800 x 800 pixels) to editor@coastalcaninemag. com or text the photo with the words “community board” to 831-601-4253. Submission deadline is January 10, 2022.
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Poodles of all shapes, sizes, and colors got to strut their stuff and show off their curly coiffed coats for this year’s 12th annual Poodle Day at the Carmel Crossroads Shopping Center. The event was the first in-person Poodle Day held since 2019 and featured roughly 460 registered dogs, with many more on the sidelines watching the parade. Th e event is a fundraiser for NorCal Poodle Rescue, a 501c3 nonprofit organization. As of 2020, it has raised approximately $170,000 for the rescue organization. Post-event activities included off-leash beach romps, as well as evening cocktail parties at desired dog-friendly hotspots including the famous Cypress Inn.
rescue me | jackson
Action Jackson, the Reborn Heeler
PHOTOS COURTESY OF THE SUSANNE AND CALLE KING
By Dina Ruiz
Jackson the Queensland Blue Heeler is the fastest one in the pasture. He zips right and left, circling the cows and sheep in a verdant Carmel Valley canyon. He’s the most dedi-cated on the ranch. He’s intuitive, a fighter. A dog who shouldn’t be alive, but is living each day to the fullest. A dog who in May of 2021, was paralyzed from a broken neck. The tall, powerfully built man didn’t look like the type who’d cry in a public space, but tears streamed down his cheeks as he cradled the broken puppy in his arms. He adored the little cattle dog, had probably imagined the pup by his side for years to come. But a tragic fall took away that dream. He brought the puppy to Dr. Danielle Hettler’s office after two days of watching him struggle. The man muttered, “I can’t…” and signed Jackson over to Dr. Hettler. “The dog couldn’t move when they walked in. I said ‘Give me a chance.’” Doctor Danielle Hettler is an outside the box veterinarian. She started her suc-cessful practice by seeing patients in a customized mobile vehicle, complete with an X-ray machine and surgery suite. She now keeps a traditional office in Carmel’s Barnyard as well. But, in her heart, her practice is open 24/7, at the office, on the road, and even in her home. She took little Jackson home with her that night, and she and her partner Josh Karanis went to work. Frankly, they didn’t think Jackson had much of a chance. “He had acute paralysis,
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rescue me | jackson
a fracture of C1 in his neck. It was what’s called a body fracture that goes into the spinal cord. We knew he might not make it, and all we could do was try. The neurologist said to sedate him, put him in a cage, and hope he recovers.” Dr. Hettler and Josh never let Jackson out of their sight—or their arms. They car-ried the 45-pound dog with them everywhere they went, fed him through an IV, changed his catheter and his diaper, held onto hope. After a week of the same— catheterization, IV fluids, medications, crate—Dr. Hettler was ready to give in, to allow the little guy res-pite from his miserable fight. “He was pretty depressed. It was painful. It was becoming clear we were at a breaking point. Josh and I talked about putting him to sleep. I said, ‘I don’t want to torture this dog. If he’s never going to come out of this, today is the day.’ I walked over to Jackson. He had never shown any affection to me at all. I’d been warned he would never like women by his previous owner. I sat in front of his cage, got in front of his face, and said, ‘Jackson, I’m not in this to torture you. What do you want to do?’” Dr. Hettler chokes up as she finishes the scenario. “He licked the back of my hand. That was it. We said, ‘We’ll keep going. Whatever it takes. If he lives and uses wheels, or a cart, it doesn’t matter.’” The next morning, a little miracle occurred. “I looked over the side of my bed and he had pushed himself up to a sitting position. Then he collapsed. I said to Josh, ‘He wants to live! This dog wants to live!’” Josh, the only person who Jackson didn’t view with contempt, says after that, real progress began to happen. “Danielle yelled my name and I went running into the bathroom and behold—Jackson was standing up! It was a terrific moment. All of Danielle’s expertise, the staff’s hard work, and our patience had allowed him to fight for his life. He made it.” The work was still far from over. An angel donor had pitched in to help cover the astronomical cost of care, and Dr. Hettler’s staff—all women who were poo-pooed by their star patient—worked overtime to make sure Jackson had a clean diaper and was comfortable at all times. They persisted. Soon, Jackson could walk, then be out with other dogs in the clinic.
“He was clumsy, tripping over himself, falling over,” Dr. Hettler says. “I thought, ‘Maybe he’ll be uncoordinated, but he’s alive.’” The progress steamrolled from there, and Jackson—now lovingly called ‘Action Jackson’—still ignored Dr. Danielle for the most part, but started to pay back his surrogate dad Josh. “Still in recovery, with muscle loss and unstable legs, ‘Action Jackson’ brought me a freshly caught gopher. It was a gift to me,” Josh says. “He knew I was proud of him. He brought me two before he left.” Calle King is a stalwart Carmel Valley rancher who relies on his dogs to work the livestock. He couldn’t have imagined Jackson in the plan. “I hate to admit it, but I was smitten with him as soon as I laid eyes on him. Being a guy, I fought letting him into my heart. It wasn’t until about a week into him being here that I realized he was mine—and I was his,” Fall 2021 | coastalcaninemag.com | 15
rescue me | jackson
King says. King’s wife Suzanne had become familiar with Jackson’s plight at Dr. Hettler’s office, and she decided to make the Heeler part of their family. “My wife brought Jackson home for herself—so she says—knowing he was a ‘guys’ dog.’ I ha-ven’t had a dog in about eight years after losing my last ACD (Australian Cattle Dog) to a tragic accident. I kept saying I wasn’t ready.” If Calle King wasn’t ready, Jackson was the opposite. He was a natural from the get-go. “We were working our herd of cows and a yearling steer broke from the pen. My wife yelled ‘Get him!’ Jackson just sat next to me, looking up at me. With only a whispered ‘Jackson! Get him!’ he leaped into action, cir-cled the runaway, and brought back the steer, holding him near the gate. That’s some-thing you usually have to teach a cow dog. You don’t get lucky to have one that has it naturally. From that moment on we have been a team.” The King squad is comprised of horses, cows, sheep, goats, pigs, chickens, cats, bearded dragons, and a tortoise. And now, Jackson. “He’s with me every day, all day, and takes his job as ‘truck dog’ very se-riously. When he’s home he’s 16 | coastalcaninemag.com | Fall 2021
a great friend to my nine-year-old son, and also a helper to my wife who is the main livestock handler. I sure am grateful to Dr. Danielle for saving this guy and sending him our way. I know I said I wasn’t ready for another dog, but I can’t imagine him not being here.”
But then he walked over to Josh. Jackson went to Josh’s feet. He started to sniff. Then his tail went a little back and forth—he knew by smell—then his tail went crazy, and he flipped upside down. Josh about cried.” Josh doesn’t deny that. “The day he saw me and recognized me melted my heart.
It was a normal October day at Dr. Hettler’s office when an old pal dropped by. Jackson had a check-up at the place where he’d been reborn only months earlier. He didn’t show much gratitude to the female office staff, but then Dr. Hettler says he rec-ognized the man who’d participated so much in saving his life. “We all had our hands down for him to sniff. But then he walked over to Josh. Jackson went to Josh’s feet. He started to sniff. Then his tail went a little back and forth—he knew by smell— then his tail went crazy, and he flipped upside down. Josh about cried.” Josh doesn’t deny that. “The day he saw me and recognized me melted my heart. I was nervous before he came into the clinic. Like an anxious parent. It was like a switch went on. He wagged his tail and tried to climb on me. If he had a gopher with him I would have grabbed him and ran off into the sunset with him. Buddies.” Buddies forever. A dog that created heartfelt pride that will last a lifetime for a caring vet who went out of the way to save his life. “It’ll be one of those cases that live on in my mind as such a success. That day he licked my hand changed everything. I’m not one of those people who think animals talk to you in a physical way, but I know they talk to you in other ways. They communicate. You just gotta listen to what they’re telling you.”
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By Pam Bonsper To make the ASL (American Sign Language) sign for “Luna” (moon): Make your thumb and index finger into a C-shape, while keeping your other fingers curled. Start with the C-shape around your eye level or forehead and move it up and away from your body.
But what if you didn’t understand the signs? What if you were not ASL literate? What if Keith needed you to learn sign language so you could communicate with him and help him with his daily needs? And . . .what if you were a puppy? Who had just been dropped off at the Española Humane Shelter about a week ago and knew no human words except your name? And what if you had to be someone’s ears? Those ears belong to Keith King, who along with his sister was born deaf. Keith grew up in northern New Mexico, attended high school in Española, went to college for a few years at New Mexico State University, and worked as an educational assistant and Deaf mentor for the New Mexico School for the Deaf in Las Cruces.
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“It was in Las Cruces when I got Salsa, my first dog while living on my own,” Keith explained. “I moved back home to northern New Mexico eight years ago. A year later Salsa passed away. And that is where this story begins: at the Española Animal Shelter.” PH O T O C O U RT E S Y O F N A N C Y BLA C K
That’s how Keith King would tell you his dog’s name: Luna. He would then sign “Paprika” to tell you his other dog’s name.
Via emails, Keith took me back seven years ago to that shelter and to that puppy. I asked him what he saw in that little Doberman and Cattle Dog mix? Keith explained that Salsa and his mother’s dog, Blue, had been his helpers. After Salsa died, he had been checking the sites for rescued dogs and saw a picture of Paprika. “She looked so much like Salsa when she was a puppy. It was like Salsa was reincarnated. When they brought Paprika out, she was really unsure and kinda scared. I really wanted to rescue her and give her a better home. I called her name, and she came up to me. And I think we both felt an instant bond.”
ALL PHOTOS COURTESY OF MATTIE ALLEN
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dog of the day | luna & paprika
I love everybody's pets, but yeah I love mine extra special and they love me best! They help me so much, they’re my ears and are always by my side.” learn her tasks. She followed Blue around the property, doing the patrols: Did something need attention? Was someone in the driveway? Was something happening around Keith? Did the hawks need to be scared away from the chickens? Paprika excelled! She soon became fluent in languages. She understood ASL and spoken English, and she also understood dog talk!
L to R: Paprika, Luna, and Blue
Paprika went home with Keith, who was unable to hear her sounds but who could feel her love. She could feel his, and that was all each of them needed. I asked Keith how she reacted to her ASL lessons. “Paprika was an Angel! She was really easy to teach and raise. Naturally, since ASL is my first language, at home I taught her signs at the same time I taught her the basic commands: sit, stay, lay down.” One of the signs Keith taught Paprika means “friend.” When he signs it, she lifts her paw to shake hands just like friends would. “Dogs have a deeper level of connection,” Keith said, “and communicating with them in sign language strengthens that bond. Because body language is an integral part of ASL, I believe I can understand what they communicate to me without words. I believe dogs pick up on sign language much easier than vocal commands. And they often respond to sign language more than vocal commands. Paprika learned and learned as she grew.” Keith added that Blue, his mom’s dog, helped Paprika 22 | coastalcaninemag.com | Fall 2021
That was important, Keith explained, “Because six years after adopting Paprika, my mom’s dog Blue was fifteen and slowing down.” And that’s when Luna entered Keith’s life. It was around Christmastime and Keith didn’t think he was ready for another dog. But moms sometimes know best. This was one of those times. His mom and their neighbor, Mattie, who works at the Española Humane Shelter, chose a sweet puppy named Luna, who had been found abandoned and was fostered until she was old enough to adopt out. “So on Christmas Eve, my mom came home and handed me a bundle of joy—Luna. And once Luna was home and given to me, she was my baby, too, and she got to learn from Blue during his last days.” Luna was another super star and quickly fell into the progression of super dogs who were there for Keith. “She picked up on sign language real fast, with the aid of Paprika being a role model and example, like Blue did with Paprika, when he retired from his patrol duties. Paprika has taken a step back and relaxed while letting younger Luna do all the work. And Paprika gets up to investigate the important stuff. They both provide me with a sense of security and companionship and are great for my mental health. They’re my kids, full of unconditional love.”
category | topic While Paprika and Luna are constantly working, being Keith’s ears, they are also allowed to just be normal
dogs. “They play all the time. They love having guests
and other dog friends come over to visit. And they love to go out for hikes and camping.”
Keith reiterated, “They know I'm deaf. They can
tell when I'm not wearing my hearing aids. They
communicate with me using a lot of eye contact for sure. They tap me with their paws, and Luna—the
talker she is—will also bark at me directly to get my
attention in addition to pawing at me while Paprika is a more silent type of communicator. They definitely are my ears. I definitely pick up a lot of cues from them. Paprika stays beside me mostly while Luna patrols
around. And if Luna sounds the alert, Paprika will let me know and go check it out as I'm right behind her to see what's going on.”
I asked Keith if there are trainers who teach sign
languages to dogs and if he ever took his girls to one. “I am sure there are places or programs out there,
but for me I just teach them like any other dog, only
Keith and his dogs with Issac and Mattie
experience it doesn't matter the breed,” he answered. “All the dogs in my family have learned sign language very well, across all breeds and mutts.”
thing different is that sign language is incorporated
Keith ended our email exchange with these words:
it is natural to deaf people to communicate with their
“I read somewhere that said, ‘everybody says their dog is the best in the world . . . they're all not wrong.’ I love everybody's pets, but yeah I love mine extra special and they love me best! They help me so much, they’re my ears and are always by my side.”
into it from the beginning. So it's natural to them. As children in sign language.”
I then asked if he thought there were specific breeds better suited for learning sign language. “In my
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Fall 2021 | coastalcaninemag.com | 23
COUNTRY MUSIC LEGEND AND ANIMAL WELFARE ADVOCATE
E M M Y LO U
HARRIS By Dina Ruiz
Emmylou Harris sits comfortably on her couch, strumming the chords on her guitar and singing a simple tune that lands right in the heart. It’s an ode to her first rescue dog Bella, who she says was “next in line” to be put down at the shelter. Big black dog Little too much grey around the muzzle Big black dog Why she ended up at the pound is a puzzle Big black dog Did she run away because somebody didn’t treat her right? Did they leave her out in the cold night after lonely night? This big black dog When Emmylou Harris speaks about dogs, her voice is filled with the same passion as if she was singing her all-time favorite song. Adoration, emotion, appreciation—all pour from her like sweet music. At 74 years old, the country legend has been in the lexicon for more than five decades, and she has more awards than she has years in the business. She’s won fourteen Grammys and is in the Country Music Hall of Fame. But her biggest prizes—her rescue dogs—sit next to her on the couch and at her feet, and run freely outside. “My latest dog, Jeeter, a senior male with special needs, came to me in an emergency situation. There was discussion Fall 2021 | coastalcaninemag.com | 25
ALL PHOTOS COURTESY OF BONAPARTES RETREAT
category | topic
“I looked outside; I had this big backyard here in Nashville. I’d seen a special on shelter dogs, and I thought, you know, I could build something to take the overspill from Nashville Humane (Association). about amputating his leg. Now, he’s bouncing around. He’s galloping around the yard. He gets vet care, two squares a day, and a lot of love,” she says, highlighting how simple it really can be to save an old dog. “You take them home. There is no greater joy than finding a dog that no one would take—there’s no way to describe it.” A portion of her backyard has been converted into a small dog rescue called Bonaparte’s Retreat, in honor of the dog that rode shotgun with Emmylou on tour for ten years. Dogs have been her best on-the-road companions during weeks—months—of touring. “If you get the right dog, they travel better than you do,” she says with a laugh. Emmylou’s love of dogs has spanned all of her fascinating lifetime. Harris got her first dog, a Cocker Spaniel named Duchess, when she was four. She was dogless when she moved to Nashville in 1990 and her career was in full swing, but the soulful chanteuse was lonely when touring. A dog named Radar changed all that. “You have that presence in
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the hotel room with you. See, unless I had a sound check, I didn’t leave the room. So now I had to walk this dog. Get him out of the room. It would get me out of the doldrums. Radar was great. He loved the bus. He loved the backstage areas. He was very good with people. It gave this extra thing to being on the road. The guys loved him. It was devastating when he died. But I ended up with two more who went on the road with me.” Beloved Bonaparte was one of them. After Bonaparte passed away, Emmylou’s mother moved in with her. It was 2004, and her mom brought along a small menagerie. One day, while appreciating all she had, a flame was lit in Emmylou to commit to something bigger than just having pets. “I looked outside; I had this big backyard here in Nashville. I’d seen a special on shelter dogs, and I thought, you know, I could build something to take the overspill from Nashville Humane (Association). That lasted a weekend. I had these dogs with no one to take care of them. So I got into action. Built
category | topic
Fall 2021 | coastalcaninemag.com | 27
cc | emmylou harris three dog runs. Hired some help to work four shifts a day. Built a bunkhouse. At first, our workers were sleeping in my office above the garage, but now, there’s a place for everyone.”
Big black dog Found her one day down there at the Metro Big black dog Waiting in a cage in line for the death row Big black dog Did somebody put her out on the road? Did they just not care? Did they think an old dog was too much trouble for them to bear? This big black dog Bonaparte’s Retreat is small but steady, caring for four dogs at a time. The rescue focusses on big dogs,
dogs with medical issues, and seniors. “Sometimes it takes years to find a forever home, but we stay with them until they are adopted,” Emmylou says with pride. “Music has been my life and my purpose, and I’m still loving it and able to perform. But this allows me to have a business that is not a money-making operation. We pay the vet bills, for food, everything. We get donations to help us from all around the country.” The “business” of rescue has changed quite a bit across the country in the last twenty years, and it’s no exception in Nashville. According to Emmylou, an estimated three dozen rescues operate in the Nashville area. But she is proud of the fact that Bonaparte’s was a trendsetter. “I started thinking about the dogs at Metro Animal Control. In 2004 and 2005, after we started, there was an outrageous euthanasia rate. About eighty percent of healthy dogs and cats were being put down. We made a deal. We’d pay the adoption fees. We were the first small, no-kill shelter to partner with them.” Emmylou Harris’s self-proclaimed second career in dog rescue is one that keeps her home more. Keeps her grounded. Keeps her heart full. Keeps her faith stoked in others who share her passion. “People who adopt senior dogs—I call them angels,” she says emphatically. “It’s great to know that whatever years they (the dogs) have left, they’ll end their days with love and kindness. There’s no greater joy than to take one that has been left behind to languish. In older dogs, they know who they are. Most are house trained. They’ve lived in a home. If they’ve made it this far, they fit right into your life as if they’ve been there forever.”
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cc | emmylou harris
Big black dogs They’re everywhere Lookin for a home They’re hungry and scared All they need is food and attention They give you back love—sometimes redemption I swear You can find it there In a big black dog Emmylou says it wasn’t just “big black dog Bella” that won her over—she has a soft spot for all big black dogs. Make that for all dogs. And she reminds us all about the gratification we can enjoy from adoption. “They—not just you—are giving so much in these last years. As humans we have a sacred responsibility to dogs. We have created them. They
are dependent on us. They give us so much for so little!” *You can watch Emmylou Harris perform Bella’s Song (Big Black Dog), learn more about Bonaparte’s Retreat, and even make a donation by visiting bonapartesretreat.org
Dina Ruiz is a longtime Peninsula resident who has worked in the media for more than 20 years. She has been an anchor at KSBW-TV and featured on the TV shows “Candid Camera” and “Mrs. Eastwood and Company.” She is currently getting a master’s degree in creative writing at San Jose State University. Her Instagram handle is @dinaruiz.
Fall 2021 | coastalcaninemag.com | 29
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by Scot t Broe cke r Working from her studio just north of Portland, Maine, Jeanelle Demers transitioned from painting human portraits to specializing in canine portraits after being asked by a few clients to paint their dogs. The photos posted of those paintings quickly led to more commissioned requests and a new focus for the artist. Jeanelle finished college with a BA in Studio Art from the University of Vermont where her main study was in painting. After working a few different regular jobs that limited her painting time to nights and weekends, Jeanelle decided to follow her artistic dream and invested the time in growing her own business and portfolio.
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Upon doing so, she noticed a significant improvement in her skills and process. For the past five years she has been self-employed as a full-time artist, working on a combination of fine artwork such as painting, as well as other graphic design projects. “I am currently shifting to focus more substantially on painting since it's what I love the most.” Jeanelle works from photographs and typically paints head-shot style portraits on 10”x10” stretched canvas using acrylic paints. She also paints on larger canvases where she has room to create an even more dynamic and captivating painting that allows for a lot more detail.
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I do! I really feel connected to them after spending so many hours carefully observing their features, and I love the stories my clients share about them. I can feel the love.
cc artist | jeanelle demers
This acute attention to detail highlights her
Painting her portraits from photos, Jeanelle
skills and the large amount of work that she
seldom gets to meet her subjects but still gets
puts into each painting.
to know them well. “I do! I really feel connected
Jeanelle stays true to the photograph sent to her, with the exception of removing a collar or changing an accessory color when requested. After laying down thousands of varying brush strokes, she realistically recreates each dog’s coat. She then further accentuates her subject by adding her own pleasing artistic background. Finishing the eyes as one of the
to them after spending so many hours carefully observing their features, and I love the stories my clients share about them. I can feel the love.” And on occasion she does get to meet some of her subjects, usually when hand delivering the finished painting, or at one of the many outdoor dog-friendly art shows that she participates in.
last steps, it all comes together bringing each
Jeanelle says that she is always honored to
painting to life.
paint someone’s dog, and that she is excited
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I would love to keep expanding my pet portrait business and provide my services to more people who love their dogs. I hope to keep trying new things creatively, experiment with new sizes and techniques, and continue to connect with others through creating meaningful artwork.
Fall 2021 | coastalcaninemag.com | 37
when a portrait is finished, knowing that it
Striving for realism while balancing each
will be lovingly hung in someone’s home as a
portrait’s detail with vibrant and expressive
keepsake honoring the life and legacy of that
color, Jeanelle tries to capture more than
dog. Her family’s black Cocker Spaniel mix
just an image. Her goal is to immortalize
named Katie modeled for one of Jeanelle’s first
a memory so her client will be able to feel
canine portraits. The portrait still hangs proudly
the personality and soul of their dog when
in her family’s house, along the stairway where
they look at the painting. Additionally, to
Katie would love to sit and look out the window.
create a vibrant and realistic work of art
Inspired by the natural world, Jeanelle also paints other animals and birds as well. Always
that will make you smile (or cry) when it catches your eye.
taking notice of colors, textures, and lighting
When asked about her future goals,
and keeping a mental note of it for future use.
Jeanelle replies, “I would love to keep
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Striving for realism while balancing each portrait’s detail with vibrant and expressive color, Jeanelle tries to capture more than just an image. Her goal is to immortalize a memory so her client will be able to feel the personality and soul of their dog when they look at the painting.
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expanding my pet portrait business and provide my services to more people who love their dogs. I hope to keep trying new things creatively, experiment with new sizes and techniques, and continue to connect with others through creating meaningful artwork.” Jeanelle cherishes the connections and stories that are shared with her by clients, and loves to see her paintings given as meaningful gifts. So select your favorite image of your loved one, the image that evokes the essence of who they are, and contact Jeanelle. She would love to paint something for you!
Fall 2021 | coastalcaninemag.com | 41
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The Little Terrier Who Captured the Hearts of a Nation While working as a night watchman for the Edinburgh City Police, a man by the name of John Gray worked his shift regularly accompanied by his little Skye Terrier. At the time, policemen were required to have watchdogs with them. Spending so much time together, John and his little dog, Bobby, became very bonded and for two years were constantly by each other’s side. When John became stricken with tuberculosis and passed away in February of 1858, little Bobby joined the funeral procession to his grave at Greyfriars Kirkyard. The little dog remained determined to stay by the graveside of his master but was sent away by the cemetery’s caretaker. Undeterred, Bobby kept returning and refused to leave, regardless of the weather conditions. Bobby’s devotion eventually captured the hearts of the locals who made sure he was given food and water and was watched after. Although dogs were not allowed in the graveyard, people rallied round and built a shelter for Bobby where he could safely stay and stand guard over John, who was known by locals as "Auld Jock." Bobby stayed there day and night, only leaving his post once each day at the sounding of the noontime cannon at Edinburgh Castle. Upon hearing the one o’clock firing, Bobby would scurry down to the local eating house where he was fed. A place that he regularly visited with old Jock. This routine would continue for 14 years. The news of Bobby’s loyalty soon spread, and people would travel from far and wide to see him. Crowds would gather for the firing of the gun, and to watch the wee dog come running in for his midday meal. In 1867, Bobby was presented with a new collar and license from The Lord Provost of Edinburgh with a brass inscription, “Greyfriars Bobby from the Lord Provost 1867 licensed.” Bobby was well cared for by the people of Edinburgh, but he still remained loyal to his master, and he continued to guard old Jock’s grave for the rest of his life, until he died on January 14th,1872, aged 16 years. He was buried just inside the gate of Greyfriars, not far from John Gray's grave. A year later, an English philanthropist commissioned this statue to commemorate Bobby.
The inscription on its base reads.
A tribute to the affectionate fidelity of Greyfriars Bobby. In 1858 this faithful dog followed the remains of his master to Greyfriars churchyard and lingered near the spot until his death in 1872.
Fall 2021 | coastalcaninemag.com | 45
READY FOR ADVENTURE? By Belinda Jones
Are you and your dog stuck in a routine roundabout? Let Fern Watt spark the adventurous spirit in both you and your pup! Once upon a time, a 160-pound English Mastiff inspired Fern Watt to write a dog-themed bucket list, with the intention of creating a treasure trove of memories for her and her beloved brindle pup. Those feel-good experiences—from sharing fresh buttered lobster to a scenic (if lopsided) canoe ride—led to the moving and beautifully crafted bestselling memoir Gizelle’s Bucket List: My Life with a Very Large Dog, which was translated into 19 languages and optioned for film. Today Fern has two new dog loves in her life—Cattle Dog mix Bette and Australian Labradoodle Oscar—and a new book brimming with over 50 ideas for bonding with your bestie. We sit down with this delightful blonde sprite over coffee in her airy Los Angeles home to find out more about Adventure Dogs: Activities to Share with Your Dog—From Comfy Couches to Mountain Tops. (Chronicle Books, $19.95)
Fall 2021 | coastalcaninemag.com | 47
PHOTOS COURTESY OF BARKHAUS, @BARKHAUS
Just flipping through the images in this coffee-table book has me all revved up for my next road trip! Can you sum up why adventures and variety are important to a dog’s quality of life?
breed of truffle-hunting dog) would succeed in
I think a lot of us, myself included, can misunderstand
presume our dogs see the world through the human
what our dogs want. Yes, dogs want simple things in life:
perspective, but it’s so much more satisfying to
eating, sleeping, walking, treats. But they also really want to be with us. Like humans, dogs are social creatures who thrive when they form deep connections with others. Clive Wynne (bestselling author and canine scientist) told me that the most important thing for a dog is healthy relationships. Also, dogs “see” the world through sniff new things is so important. Humans are more visual creatures, so we don’t understand why dogs must stick their noses in everything; but scent work can be so rewarding. At truffle dog school in Oregon, I assumed only the Lagotto Romagnolos (Italian
PHOTOS COURTESY OF FERN WATT
their noses, so letting them stop to
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finding truffles. However, every single dog—from senior Pugs to rescue mutts to enormous Newfoundland puppies— found at least one truffle in the wild! We can
PHOTOS COURTESY OF JIM ZELASKO
appreciate dogs as the wonderful, intelligent canines
I loved participating in the Running with the Bears
that they are.
canicross race in Greenville, California, with Bette—
Planning dog-centric adventures seems to be such a win-win for all involved!
and we both got finisher medals! (Canicross is crosscountry running with dogs.) I also discovered that whether you’re out hiking or simply going for a walk,
Absolutely! During my research I discovered that
dogs make excellent tour guides!
everything I was doing to give my dog the best life
One of my favorite pics is of you cycling in Santa Monica with Bette’s paws on your shoulders . . .
ever was also really rewarding for me. In an uncertain world with news stories that make us feel a little less than cheerful, dogs add playfulness, presentness, and
She really likes to go everywhere with me, and I never
love to our lives.
If you had to pick one adventure to relive, which would you choose?
imagined that I’d be able to zip her in a backpack and carry her on my back. (Thanks, K9 Sport Sack©!) Bette
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PHOTOS COURTESY OF AXELLE WOUSSEN
I always think of your signature style as thoughtful and thought-provoking—even your Instagram posts (@lfernwatt) make me pause and ponder life in a new way! Thank you! With the adventures in this book, I often talk about my own takeaway or the lesson I learned by doing that adventure. Dogs have so much to teach us about love, loss, and living in the moment.
Just hearing the word “loss” in the same sentence as “dog” makes my heart pang! may have a lot of fears about the world, but by exposing her to new things and showing her that the world is not such a scary place, she builds more confidence. Plus, she enjoys the wind in her face just like I do!
Any other tips for owners of naturally wary or timid dogs when it comes to trying something new? I'd highly recommend professional training so the
I know! Considering a new dog after you lose your Heart Dog is so hard. It took me a long time to make it to the shelter after I lost Gizelle, but I think the George Carlin quote is right: "Life is a series of dogs.” I had Gizelle in my teens and early 20s, and she was such a regal, mellow dog, it felt like she was always watching over me. Bette is with me in my early 30s, and I feel as if she's given me my first small glimpse into parenthood—she’s taught me a lot about patience,
two of you can learn to better understand each other. Humans are not always the smarter end of the leash, and sometimes training is needed in order to work together and be able to go out and try new things! Interestingly, as I've tried to train Bette to let go of some of her fears and anxieties, I've been able to take a
As well as consulting canine experts, you have included many fun contributions from pet industry celebrities. Yes, photographer Seth Casteel (The Underwater Dogs guy) reveals his secrets for doing an underwater photo shoot with your dog, and @tunameltsmyheart’s human, Courtney Dasher, shares some of her favorite
50 | coastalcaninemag.com | Fall 2021
PHOTOS COURTESY OF FERN WATT
better look at some of my own.
cc | fern watt acceptance, and unconditional love. And then there’s Oscar, my boyfriend's dog. Oscar’s brain seems to have a peaceful fall breeze blowing through it at all times! Side by side, Bette and Oscar look like Max and Duke from The Secret Life of Pets, and their opposite personalities seem to balance each other out! I really believe all dogs have new things to teach us—above all else they remind us that our time here is not forever and it’s important to prioritize those big adventures, but also make time for the small ones within reach every day. ADVENTURE DOGS is out spring 2022 and available now for preorder. You can also sign up to receive the Fernie’s Fetch newsletter (fernwatt.com) for weekly inspiration. Next up, keep an eye out for ADVENTURE DOG, the TV show where Fern will be teaming up with canine experts to explore the world of dogs in a way that has never been done before!
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Belinda Jones is a dog-besotted British magazine journalist and bestselling author of eleven romantic comedy novels and a feeelgood road trip memoir titled Bodie on the Road - Travels With My Rescue Pup in the Dogged Pursuit of Happiness (Skyhorse Publishing). Her Instagram handle is @bodieeontheroad
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cc | asher house
MAKING A DIFFERENCE
ALL PHOTOS COURTESY OF LEE ASHER
“Asher’s best life was to be surrounded by dogs, to help dogs, and to inspire others to follow their dreams as well.”
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cc | asher house
his six adopted dogs—Bo, Lillie, Cali, Butters, Molly, and Stella—ranging in size from Chihuahuas to a Saint Bernard. His plan? To travel all over the United States visiting shelters and helping to get dogs adopted. The adventure began in February 2018. At the start of the trip, he had six dogs traveling with him, but by the end of the trip, his pack had more than doubled. He did not adopt every dog his heart went out to. He did something better. He inspired others to adopt. Using social media to document all their adventures and showcase adoptable dogs, Asher was able to develop a strong and supportive following, which even led to an interview with Ellen DeGeneres and a $10,000 donation to support his efforts.
Five years ago, Lee Asher was working as a corporate consultant. He didn’t love his job. He didn’t see the purpose. He woke up every morning feeling there must be more to life. He went to bed every night with the same thought. Asher’s heart was with animals. Ever since he was 12 years old, he spent as much time with animals and visiting animal shelters as he could. They were his happy place and instilled in him from a young age a sense of compassion for all animals and people.
Asher loved educating people about the many, many wonderful dogs needing homes. He spotlighted dogs of every age, every size, every breed, and every mix. People showed up at adoption events to meet him, see his RV, meet his dogs, and adopt a dog themselves. He was on the road for two years and visited animal shelters in every state except Hawaii, and toured all over Canada as well. Over 500 dogs were adopted from the events he showed up at and countless others found
Once he entered the workforce, in the back of his mind there was a goal. When I’m older and able to retire, I’ll start an animal sanctuary. But then one day, when he was in his late twenties, he had a new thought. “Why wait?” The idea thrilled him. “No one ever failed at following their bliss and living their dreams.” He had heard stories of people taking a giant leap of faith and living their best life with authenticity and passion. He could too. Asher’s best life was to be surrounded by dogs, to help dogs, and to inspire others to follow their dreams as well. He quit his job. Sold everything he had. Bought an old school bus and converted it to a comfy RV for him and Fall 2021 | coastalcaninemag.com | 53
their forever homes through his social media. But it wasn’t all work and no play! Asher and his pack of rescued dogs had many fun adventures together along the way. There was plenty of time for hiking, camping, paddle boarding, bicycling, exploring, and going for beach romps. When it was time to hit the road again, all the pups were happy to pile back onto the bus and find their place on the comfy couches the RV was outfitted with.
PetCalm is a tiny music cube that plays hours of calming classical music for your dog! It fits in the palm of your hand and can help reduce stress and anxiety — especially during traveling, hiking and other outdoor/indoor activities. Produced by Dr. Tom Nazziola (of Disney’s Baby Einstein) PetCalm eliminates the need for any other device in supplying hours of relaxing, calming music for pets and their owners. To purchase PetCalm, visit: www.musicmypet.com
In early 2020, right around the time the pandemic hit the United States, Asher’s Pit Bull, Stella, died from cancer. After Stella’s passing, Asher wanted to do something big in her honor. His new goal became crystal clear to him—he would start an animal sanctuary to help more homeless dogs like Stella. Stella had become part of his family in 2017 after he adopted her from the South LA Animal Shelter. At the time, he was looking for a smaller dog to adopt, but when he first saw Stella, he felt compelled to get to know her. He took her to the shelter play area, and she just ran and ran with so much joy. He realized she was a dog who could inspire people to take a chance on a large, strong breed. She was a gentle girl even though she was pure muscle. Asher put his energy into building his sanctuary. He now has 25 acres in Oregon just outside of Portland, and he’s up to 24 dogs of all breeds, ages, shapes, and sizes. He’s helped get thousands of dogs adopted, but these 24 are staying with him permanently. They come from shelters from all over and from varied backgrounds. Once they get to the sanctuary and experience the joy of living on 25 acres with Asher and the rest of the pack, most behavior issues resolve themselves or never emerge in the first place.
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The sanctuary is also home to alpacas, llamas, goats, pigs, donkeys, and a ram. It is a fully fenced property, but there are no kennels or cages—the animals comingle and they all get along beautifully. This 25acre paradise is a private sanctuary where he lives and cares for the dogs himself with no volunteer help. Asher’s next step is to build a public animal sanctuary. He wants it to be the best animal sanctuary in the world. This will be the sanctuary where people can come and volunteer and meet adoptable animals. To that end, he recently purchased another 80 acres. He is partnering with one of his favorite rescues, Family Dogs New Life Animal Shelter in Portland. This shelter is run by a couple who have been doing rescue for 20 years. They will bring their talents and expertise to this joint endeavor. Asher loves animals. But he also loves people. And he loves the planet. His ultimate goal is to be a role model for love, kindness, and compassion. He loves to see his work with animals uplift and inspire people. He extends kindness and compassion to all living beings to make the world a better place. Won’t you join him in whatever way you can? Asher’s work is funded by donations, ad sponsorships, and a CBD company that he owns. To learn more about Asher and watch his vision develop before your very eyes, follow him on Instagram @TheAsherHouse or visit his website at TheAsherHouse.com.
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PO Box 51554, Pacific Grove, CA
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~ Dr. Brynie Kaplan Dau Pacific Grove Animal Hospital
For More information, contact Michelle Hayes 831-539-4469 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Your Pets. Our Passion.
Lincoln Street Between Ocean and 7th (next door to Cypress Inn) 831-574-8169 www.carmeldogshop.com
Open Daily: Monday thru Saturday 10:00am to 6:00pm Sunday 10:00am to 5:00pm
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