Issuu on Google+

PUPCULTURE April/May 2012 |













Furthering Our Love of Dogs Publisher PUP CULTURE Magazine Editor-in-Chief Gabriella Martinez Managing Editor Sherri Romig Contributing Editors Geoffrey Hunt Amanda Seef Michelle Macirella Christine White Creative Director Monica Cevallos Photo Editor Michelle Macirella Design & Production Sarah Van Bogaert Monica Cevallos Gabriella Martinez Contributing Writers Rebecca Astheimer MaryAnn Aquilino Carol Giotto Laura Kinsey Michelle Macirella Gabriella Martinez Kim Mayes Diana Nichols Pappert Ada Lana-Simms Debra Thesing Elaine Webster Christine White

“To the world you may be just one person, but to one dog you may be the world”- unknown Welcome to the April/May, “Be Kind To Animals” issue of Pup Culture Magazine. We hope your are enjoying the arrival of Spring as much as we are. We want to inspire you by sharing the stories of several brave individuals and their pets that are shaping the way we see the world. Their stories prove it only takes one person to spark a movement that inspires others to join their cause and make the world a better place. As you may or may not know, there has been an on-going struggle in Gorham, NY between pet-lovers and investors who proposed building a commercial dog-breeding facility or puppy mill. Fortunately, a nation-wide opposition swayed the Gorham Town Board’s opinion—they decided to impose a one year moratorium on all new dog breeding and dog kenneling facilities in their town. We have included an article exposing the truth about puppy mills to help inspire you to join our fight against puppy mills. Be sure to read about Faith, our cover dog on page 24, who has overcome physical deformities to inspire and change the lives of others including soldiers and military veterans. We also hope you will find inspiration from Tad’s story on page 30 about a dog whose life was saved by a good samaritan that refused to give up on him despite the declining health that was bringing him toward death.

Contributing Photographers Julie Clegg, Bailey & Banjo Pet Photography Linda Dow Hayes, Hayes Photography Michelle Macirella, Luminaria Photography Robert Ochoa, Pawmazing Photography Terri Parthum, Terri Parthum Photography

Check out Lilly’s Story on page 40, a story about a young girl who has proven how one person, no matter their age, can make a difference.

Advertising Inquires call (585) 857.7126 or

Don’t forget to visit us at or “Like” us on Facebook to stay current with more great articles, information and giveaways exclusive to the web. As always, our bi-monthly online subscription is free, so be sure to sign-up on our mailing list through the website to have the magazine delivered to your inbox.

Email The publisher is not responsible for unsolicited manuscripts, images, photographs, or other materials. By accepting and publishing advertising, the publisher in no way recommends, guarantees or endorses the quality of services or products within those advertisements. Copyright 2011 by PUP CULTURE Magazine. All rights reserved. No part of publication may be reproduced by any means, electronic or mechanical, including the internet or photocopying without the written permission of the publisher. PUP CULTURE and its logotype are the trademarks of PUP CULTURE Magazine.

Make sure to check out our health and wellness articles, yummy treat recipes, and of course, those cute little Weiner dogs, Max and Mina in “The Funny Bone” comic on page 56.


Gabriella & Sherri








WELLNESS: Benefits Of Omega-3’S


GROOMING: Coping With Tear Staining


ENTERTAINMENT: Interview With Tanya Marchiol


TTOUCH: The Balance Lead


RESCUE: The Abandoned Dog


TRAINING: Teaching Your Dog To Read


BEHAVIOR: Kids & Dogs


FASHION: Kane & Couture

FAITH THE DOG: Standing Up On Her Own Two Legs


MOBILE VETS: A Growing Trend?


THE TRUTH ABOUT PUPPY MILLS: How Much That Dog In The Window Really Costs


LILLY’S STORY: You’re Never Too Young To Make A Difference



BIG CITY, LITTLE DOG: Westminster Fashion Show





PUPCULTURE April/May 2012 |



STAFF PICKS: Pup Culture Magazine’s Pick Of The Litter


DOGGIE DELICACIES: Vanilla Mint Biscuits






MAKE YOUR OWN: Pet Silhouette




PRODUCT REVIEW: Zuke’s: Mini Naturals

















Faith the Dog Photo By: Atort Photography | 3





10AM - 6PM

Bring your pet to the Houston Pet Expo, located indoors at the beautiful Reliant Center. Play, shop, learn or adopt in airconditioned comfort at Houston’s largest pet expo.

For More Information:




3PM - 9PM

Deviant Art is a benefit art show fundraiser for A Rotta Love Plus. Attendees will experience unique, multi-media artwork by local & national artists who explore themes of “deviant” breeds: beloved canine companions who are often portrayed by the media as menaces.

For More Information :




9:30AM - 3:30PM

Join us for the greatest spectacle in dog walking as Harrison College presents Mutt Strut 2012! This one-of-a-kind event will bring people together from across Indiana and the country to walk the famous 2 ½ -mile oval at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

For More Information and Tickets:

Want Your Pet Related Event Listed?


3PM - 9PM

Join Florida Boxer Rescue for a festive evening featuring delicious food, cash bar, door prizes, and great art.

For More Information: 4 | PUPCULTURE APRIL/MAY


Please join Lollypop Farm as we relive the roaring twenties at “The Great Catsby” at the Sonnenberg Gardens & Mansion. Stroll the gardens, play a game of croquet, indulge in some bathtub gin, wear your flapper dress, and dance the night away!

For More Information:

Email us the details at and we will do our best to get it listed either online or in our magazine.

Happy Endings A Destination Pets Helping People Protecting Animals $53.00

I absolutely love my Dogit fountain by Hagen. Having 3 large dogs and 6 cats, I used to fill water bowls more than a dozen times a day. Since the Dog-It filter holds up to 10.5L of water, I can fill the water bowl once a day, plus I know my pets are getting clean, filtered water. —Gabriella $5.00-14.00

I just love this beaded collar set, perfect for my mini dahchsund Mina, who is a true diva. This set is truely unique and its detail, with it soft pearlescent sheen is sumptuous. Best of all, it looks like a million bucks and my little Mina practically preens with glee, when wearing it.— Monica

One of my dog’s favorite chew toys is Nylabone’s FlexiChew Bones. He is a small dog and can’t handle the hard nylon some of the other chew bones are made of, so the softer polymer of the FlexiChews is much better for him. He has a selection of four and likes to have them all at once and take turns chewing on each one. They also come in different sizes and flavors. — Michelle

We LOVE our modapet bowl. From it’s classy finish to it’s non-skid base it’s a fabulous addition to our pet supplies. It holds 4 cups of food, but we use it for water. It’s BPA free and dishwasher safe! —Debbie $24.95

$14.95 - $16.95 $85.00


When I discovered Stacy Hsu’s Original Sock Dogs it was love at first sight. Imagine having a miniature, plush 13”16” carbon-copy of your best friend (includes a personalized Id tag) to take wherever you go? They also donate 10% of every sale to the Humane Society of Greater Kansas City, Angle City Pits, and Mid-American Bully Breed Rescue. —Christine

I have one dog who believes her purpose in life is to destroy any and all toys.  This is the ONLY toy that she has not been able to destroy. The toy is made of Zogoflex which is buoyant, pliable, and designed to be recyclable.  It is stuffable, non-toxic, dish-washer safe and made in the USA.  What more $15.50 could you ask for? — Carol

Dogs and humans share many common diseases, and studies have shown that many of the supplements that humans take are also beneficial to dogs. The advantages of Omega -3s have been widely recognized in humans, but what about using Omega-3s to help our canine companions? Osteoarthritis is a painful degenerative joint disease that affects many canines, especially geriatric dogs. The benefits of using Omega 3s for humans suffering from osteoarthritis have been well documented, and science is now starting to recognize that they can help canine sufferers of this disease as well.


The Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association (JAVMA), published studies in the January and March 2010 issues reporting the possible benefits of feeding foods high in Omega-3 fatty acid concentrations to dogs with osteoarthritis. The results of these studies showed that the dogs experienced less pain associated with the disease and greater mobility, according to contributing author Dr. Kevin Hahn, director of research and chief medical officer at Hill’s Pet Nutrition Inc.

• Omega-3’s can also decrease levels of triglycerides and cholesterol in the blood. Dogs receiving Vitamin -A therapy for various skin  problems may develop hyperlipidemia (an elevation of fats in the bloodstream). Also, dogs with kidney disease tend to have elevated levels of blood cholesterol and triglycerides.

“Many of us write off mobility problems in dogs as a part of the aging process,” Hahn said. “These studies demonstrate that feeding a food containing Omega-3 fatty acids to a dog with osteoarthritis significantly improves mobility and quality of life. All three studies showed significant mobility improvement as assessed by either pet owners, veterinarians, or both.”

Fatty acids cannot be synthesized by the body and therefore must be supplemented in the diet. Flax and flax oil are good sources of omega 3 but unstable. Heat processing destroys most of the flaxseed’s value. Cold-pressed flax oil is an excellent choice, but has a short shelf life and must be kept continuously under refrigeration.

The three studies demonstrated that dogs with chronic pain associated with osteoarthritis showed improvements in their ability to play and get up from rest at six weeks after being switched to a diet containing high concentrations of fish oil Omega-3 fatty acids; that limb strength in dogs improved with Omega-3 dietary intervention; and common non steroidal antiinflammatory drugs used for pain relief were able to be reduced while still maintaining relief from pain in dogs that were fed food supplemented with Omega-3 fatty acids.

Unless your dog is allergic to fish, omega-3 from fish oils such as salmon oil, cod liver oil, and sardine oil is always better than omega-3 from plant sources. Though plant sources, especially flaxseed oil, contain higher amounts of omega-3 than fish oil, those in flaxseed oil are in an inactive form (ALA). Special enzymes, which dogs do not have, are required to convert the inactive ALA into the active forms (EPA and DHA). The fatty acids contained in fish oil are readily available for use.

“It’s also very important for dog owners to know that osteoarthritis can be a silent and unrecognized problem that affects both the pet’s and the owner’s quality of life. With proper nutritional intervention, we can enrich and lengthen that special relationship between people and their pets,”said Hahn.

Omega 3’s are beneficial in others ways: • They are effective in controlling allergies and skin disease • They help maintain mental alertness in older dogs • They help maintain a healthy, shiny coat and benefit the skin • They encourage the proper development of the retina and visual cortex • They help alleviate the symptoms of inflammatory diseases,  such as irritable bowel disease

and spread of certain cancer tumors; they can also improve the immune system, which may help the body fight cancer as well

You can find fish oil supplements made specifically for dogs, or you can use the same supplements you use for yourself, but be sure they do not contain added Omega-6s. Dogs need a supplement high in Omega-3s and the added Omega-6 can upset the balance of the fats in your pet’s system. Dosages vary based on the size of the animal, and you should always consult with your vet before giving any supplements to your dogs. Pets with allergies may require higher dosages than the standard. The easiest way to administer these oils is to puncture a capsule and squeeze the contents into your dog’s food. There are also many Omega supplements available in liquid form. There is no known toxicity if you give your dog too much Omega 3, but if you exceed his capacity to absorb it, your dog may get diarrhea. You should start to see an improvement in your pet’s health within three to six weeks.n

• They can help prevent certain cardiovascular problems in  dogs, such as high blood pressure and abnormal rapid heart rhythms • They control the growth of Malassezia pachydermatis (which causes yeast infections in both cats and dogs) • They can prevent the growth and slow down the development | 9


MOBILE VETS: A GROWING TREND? Written By Debra Thesing

The Benefits of Mobile Veterinary Clinics and Why You Should Consider Using Them


lose your eyes. Imagine you are in the waiting room patiently sitting on a bench, waiting for the veterinarian to call your name. Chances are your nose has picked up strange odors whose smell you cannot pinpoint. You hear cats hissing at one another, dogs barking and the receptionists answering phone calls. You’ve used your vacation time to take your dog to the veterinarian and you become frustrated because the wait seems like an eternity. Suddenly, the doctor calls your name; you open your eyes and walk over to the examining room. Most everyone who owns a pet can relate to this experience. While we want our pets to be healthy and receive the best care available, the process can be timeconsuming and oftentimes frustrating. Having six pugs I know how exhausting trips to the vet can be—we try to schedule visits to accommodate our busy schedules, personalities and costs. Choosing a mobile veterinary practitioner (MVP) or a house call veterinarian over a stationary clinic has many advantages for pets and their owners alike.

Photo By Bailey & Banjo Pet Photography

According to Dr. Dena D. Baker, DVM and Founding Director of the American Association of Mobile Veterinary Practitioners (AAMVP) owning a mobile veterinary clinic allows doctors to work one-on-one with clients, without interruption. “One advantage of mobile practice is the veterinarian gets to be one-on-one with the client— you don’t have to worry about rushing back to the waiting room and on to your next appointment,” explained Dr. Baker, DVM. “You’re able to develop relationships with each client and you have time to promote client-education, all of which are beneficial to the animals in the long-run.” | 11

Photo By Linda Dow Hayes

Dr. William Murphy of Rochester, NY who originally worked in a stationary veterinary clinic for 18 years also sees the ability to build close relationships with his clients as one of the greatest benefits mobile and house-call veterinarians are able to provide. He enjoys the informal setting of housecalls and feels there is less rush than a typical office setting. Appointments can be re-scheduled quickly (usually the same day or the next day) and if a client’s pet needs medications he can fill the order by mail. According to Dr. Baker, convenience is one of the greatest benefits for clients who choose to work with MVPS. Rather than using vacation time to bring your dog to the veterinarian, you can schedule an appointment with a MVP who will care for your pet while you are at work and have everything done by the time you get home. MVPs are also beneficial for people with children who prefer not to take them to the veterinarian and people who own multiple animals. “If my clients have multiple animals I can come and take care of all of them at once instead of them having to make multiple trips,” stated Dr. Baker. Dr. Baker also offers her clients the option to oversee their pet’s procedures and can offer the kind of flexibility allowing a more relaxing and less stressful experience for her patients. “If there were procedures that could be done in the home where the animal was more comfortable that’s where I would perform my work,” stated Dr. Baker. “My team and I even took 12 | PUPCULTURE APRIL/MAY

Photo By Linda Dow Hayes

care of some dogs in their yard because that was where they were most comfortable.” In addition to Dr. Baker, Dr. An Nguyen said that working as a MVP has allowed him to assist elderly pet owners who struggle to get their pets to a stationary veterinary clinic. He’s also able to assist feisty pets in the safety and comfort of their own home who would not receive care otherwise. According to Dr. Nguyen operating a mobile veterinary clinic offers the flexibility and convenience that most workingprofessionals would prefer. Being a mobile vet offers him the flexibility of working in a field he loves while simultaneously enjoying the Florida lifestyle. Although MVPs are associated with many advantages, Dr. Baker said MVPs often charge an additional cost for a house

call fee or trip fee— something that could be avoided by going to a stationary veterinary clinic. She said, however, that most people see the time and gas money they will save, in addition to the ability to go to work while a MVP takes care of your pet at home, as a reasonable payoff. Other than the trip fee or house call fee, Dr. Baker says that MVPs are not limited in the services they can provide as long as each procedure is preformed safely. She says a mobile veterinary practitioner who has a mobile unit can do everything from surgeries to dentals; x-rays and blood work. Conversely, house call veterinarians cannot provide fullservice care. As opposed to having a “hospital on wheels,” as Dr. Baker called it, house call veterinarians drive regular vehicles like SUVs and do not have enough equipment to preform major medical procedures. Dr. Murphy, DVM, who visits patients in a Saturn station wagon, is a prime example of a house call veterinarian. Most of his visits focus on procedures he can complete in his patient’s home and for everything else he relies on a base hospital where he can perform surgeries and other complex procedures for his patients. Likewise, Dr. Baker said that although she can perform surgeries in her mobile vehicle, she prefers to work on animals less than 200 pounds so she has sufficient room to successfully preform complex operations. In some cases, however, Dr. Baker has made an exception. “I’ve worked with leopards, jaguars and panthers,” reflected Dr. Baker. “Transporting such large animals to a stationary

Photo Courtesy of Kerri Meehan, Experssions of Art

veterinary clinic would be too difficult and dangerous. By using my MVP I was able to sedate the animals in their enclosures, preform the necessary procedures in my truck and take them back to their enclosures to wake up.” Dr. Baker is a firm believer in MVPs and believes they are growing in popularity as consumers learn about this more convenient option available for them and their pets. Dr. Baker was a MVP for eight and a half years, but has since retired to become a consultant for others who need help starting their own mobile veterinary practice. “I started AAMVP a couple of years ago because there weren’t many resources available for individuals who wanted to start their own practice,” stated Dr. Baker. “As I gained more experience as a MVP a lot of people would call me and ask questions. I co-founded AAMVP because my colleagues and I needed a place where each time someone started a mobile clinic they didn’t have to go and re-invent the wheel.” The AAMVP provides educational webinars on a regular basis for new MVPs, encouraging positive growth and development within the industry. Their mission is to network mobile veterinarians and communicate with veterinarians who own stationary clinics so they can better understand mobile veterinary clinics and how their operations differ from stationary clinics. “I see mobile veterinary clinics as a growing trend and a unique niche for veterinarians who are looking to do things differently,” said Dr. Baker. “Mobile vets are convenient and they have many positive attributes to offer clients. The next big thing is to let the general public know that we exist and that the option is out there for them.” Next time you take your dog to a veterinarian, consider choosing a MVP instead to save time and to offer the leaststressful option for your pets. n

Photo Courtesy of La Boit Mobile Specialty Vehicles | 13

Photo By Robert Ochoa

Written By Mary Ann Aquilino


hile they’re most evident on white or light-colored breeding ground for bacteria and yeast, the most common being red dogs, and commonly affect small dogs, stains from yeast, and causes a reddish-brown stain sometimes accompanied eye tearing can affect any breed. Puppies tear more by a strong odor. as they grow and also during teething; this is normal and will often Excessive tearing can happen because tear ducts are infected, or go away on its own. as a response to irritants like allergies, dust, eye abrasions, poor There are a number of reasons your dog may get tear stains. Hair diet, or a health issue such as glaucoma, eye infections or eyelash/ growing around the eyes wicks moisture below the eyes, and this eyelid problems. It can also happen due to improper drainage of the can result in staining. Genetics, diet and health can also play a role tear ducts because of genetic or structural reasons, or inflammation in tear staining. Excessive tearing, called epiphora, can also happen of the tear ducts. While the normal eyes of a dog have small holes due to overproduction of tears or insufficient tear drainage. The that drain tears down the throat, a number of eye problems can excessive moisture from epiphora can cause facial hair to become a affect this drainage. The following tips are ways to cope with tear staining. 14 | PUPCULTURE APRIL/MAY



Rule Out Allergies

Check Your Dog’s pH

If you notice the tear staining is seasonal, it may be due to Changing the dog’s pH slightly can help eliminate bacteria, the allergies. If your dog has moved to a new home or daycare, if you deep stain color, and prevent yeast buildup. A teaspoon of cider have new carpeting, furniture, a new pet or family member or other vinegar per gallon to the distilled water for drinking can help changes around your house or yard, suspect environmental causes. change your dog’s pH. In The Holistic Guide for a Healthy Dog, author Wendy Volhard recommends using pH paper strips to check the dog’s first morning urine. “If it reads anywhere from 6.2 to 6.5, your dog’s system is Check with Your Vet exactly where it should be,” and no apple cider vinegar is needed, If you cannot pinpoint environmental changes, or tear staining she says. “But if it is 7.5 or higher, the diet you are feeding is lasts year-round, the first thing you should do is have your dog too alkaline, and apple cider vinegar will reestablish the correct examined by a vet; this is especially important if the dog squints, balance.” Volhard recommends one teaspoon to one tablespoon paws at his eyes or exhibits signs of pain. Your vet may recommend twice daily for a 50-pound dog. Your vet can also test your dog’s a veterinary ophthalmologist check your dog if a serious problem pH. is suspected.


3. Wash Your Dog’s Face Daily washing of your dog’s face with warm water will also help to keep the area clean. Grooming does not stop tear stains from developing, though it can help to clean away the clumpy, discolored hair and help to keep the area from becoming irritated. While you can use wipes to clean the areas of staining, realize this is only a short-term solution and the next time the eyes tear, the staining will return.

4. Switch to Ceramic, Glass or Stainless Steel Food and Water Bowls Water and food bowls should be either ceramic, glass, or stainless steel, as plastic and other materials can harbor bacteria.

5. Switch to Distilled or Reverse Osmosis Purified Water Minerals in your dog’s drinking water can also cause tear stains. Iron in water will cause secretions to turn red when saliva is exposed to air. If your dog licks his feet a lot and you notice reddish stains there, that is also from iron in the saliva. Giving your dog distilled (or reverse osmosis purified water) may help with this.

Note: If you’re feeding your dog a good food and a well-balanced diet, apple cider vinegar should not be necessary.

7. Switch to a Higher Quality Food If you recently changed your dog’s food and now notice staining, you can switch back or gradually change to a new food. Also, try a better quality of dog food. They may cost more but are a healthier food for the dog and worth the extra cost. Lower priced dog foods often have poor quality meats and other ingredients, and have additives that add bulk and color but not valuable nutrition. Look for better foods made with high quality ingredients and avoid filler products and dyes. Also, some treats may consist of poor quality ingredients that will also contribute to staining. If you remove the tear stains but continue feeding food or treats that are causing the problem, you will continue to get tear stains.

8. Add Supplements to Your Dog’s Diet For eyes that have no genetic or structural issues that cause tear staining, supplements may be the best option. These products work from the inside out, attacking the root cause of the problem. There are a number of supplements to treat tear stains on the market. Not recommended are any that contain the ingredient Tylosin, an antibiotic. Some animals may become sick after ingesting this antibiotic. One that has been studied and is recommended and does not contain Tylosin is Tearlax. Tearlax has the added benefit of improving your pet’s overall health in addition to being able to safely and effectively reduce the appearance of tear stains. | 15


INGREDIENTS: n 1 1/2 cups rice flour n 1 1/2 cups oat flour n 1 1/2 cups of quick cooking oats n 1/4 cup organic honey n 1/4 cup of dried mint leaves n 1 tsp vanilla n 1/2 cup water

DIRECTIONS: 1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. 2. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl until a stiff dough forms. 3. Flour surface with either rice or oat flour. Roll out dough and cut shapes with a cookie cutter. 4. Place on baking sheets and bake for approximately one hour or until treats are crispy and golden brown. Allow to cool. 6. Place in cello bags and package as gifts, place in treat jar or serve immediately to hungry puppies.


Pet Portraits Marion Romig, Professional Artist Turn a favorite photo of your loving pet into an original work of art, prices starting as low as $90*. Do you want to do it yourself? I can teach you: visit

Marion Romig, Professional Colored Pencil Artist 85 White Rabbit Trail Rochester, NY 14612 585-392-8235 *5� x 7� finished piece ready for framing.


Exclusive Interview With


Pup Culture Editor-In-Chief, Gabriella Martinez, chatted with Tanya Marchiol, Fox Business News real estate correspondent and recurring HGTV personality, to talk about her company, Team Investments, her rescue and the loves of her life, her three Cane Corsos: Capo, Vita & Dolce.

Pup Culture: How did you get into real estate? Tanya Marichol: I was a professional volleyball player in Italy and when I came back stateside, I really didn’t have any clue what I wanted to do. I went to work on a golf course as a cart girl and the brakes went out on the cart and the cart ended up slipping and landing on my ankle. I was in the hospital for six months and they had to completely re-create my leg. In the hospital, my mom basically asked me, ‘What are you going to do with your life?’ So she bought me real estate books becuase that’s what she grew up knowing—real estate. I studied when I was in the hospital and when I got out I started flipping houses. My neighbor at the time was Justin Lucas, who plays for the Arizona Cardinals, and he was like, ‘Hey if you are flipping houses for you, can you help me?’ and I was like, ‘You bet’. So, I helped him and in that first year we did 13 houses together. PC: Can you tell me about Team Investments? TM: I realized that no one was helping professional athletes put real estate in their financial portfolio. That is where the Team Investment part of the investments came about. We’ll help anyone. It doesn’t matter whether they have a thousand or a million dollars the whole point is really to educate and make sure people are making wise real estate choices and whether it’s their personal family home or an investment, it needs to make sense. PC: A lot of dogs are put into shelters because their families are moving and can’t take them. Are there any tips you can give moving pet owners so they can bring their pets along with them? TM: I believe we don’t give up our children because finances get hard; I would never encourage anyone to give up their pet. I believe that so many people feel that they can’t take their pet with them and they can. It’s finding the person that will work with you. It’s a traumatizing move not only for the animal, but for the homeowner too. If you find the right real estate agent, they fit your family’s needs. PC: What is your favorite part about being in the real estate business?

Photo Provided


TM: The people. Being able to help people go from A-Z and see that financial gain or that look on their face when they get into their new house, or even in this market—when they get out of their situation. I am a big believer that your house should be a home, it should be a safe haven and so many people are in the situation right

now where it’s a burden. Individual home owners are taught that we have a moral obligation to stay in this burden that is destroying our family and we can’t feed our kids and so on and so forth. I say make a better financial decision and move on. PC: I see you have worked with rescues such as Best Friends Animal Society. Can you tell me about any projects or work you have done for them? TM: I do their walk and really support them financially; I think they are an amazing organization. Their facility is above all else. They are amazing so anything I can do to support them, I do. PC: Have you always loved dogs? TM: Always. I have always been a dog fan. PC: You are the owner of Capo’s Rescue, a large breed dog rescue. How did you get started with that? TM: I wanted to do something with a charity. I don’t have kids and although I know there are a ton of great charities out there for children—these are my children, they are my heart. They have brought me through hard times, they have been there through good times. I mean no matter what, you come home—they’re there. I wanted to give back some of the joy that I have been able to receive just by having them in my life to other people. PC: Is it a no kill rescue? TM: Absolutely. I truly believe that any dog can be rehabilitated. I think that Michael Vick’s dogs are the perfect example of this. Every dog deserves a chance and with the right people around them, doing the right things to them, anything is possible. PC: Tell us about your dogs. TM: Capo is 13 and the girls are 6. All three of them have individual personalities, and I think every dog is like that. There is no cookie cutter anything to these guys. Capo can count; if I hold up one finger, he’ll bark once, if I do two he’ll bark twice, and three he’ll bark three times. And depending on what fingers you hold up he can go backwards and forwards so that’s pretty funny. The girls are just a hoot. They have their own personalities. The little black one is Vita, and that means life in Italian— she is just a little buster. She is into everything. If there is something mischievous going on— it’s her. My brindle one, Dolce, which means sweet, she is the cuddler. She’s gonna be cuddled up, snuggled somewhere with

you. And then Capo which means the head-the boss, has always been my protector and he has always been by my side—he doesn’t leave my side. And I just love that. PC: Did you adopt any of your dogs? If so, why did you choose adoption? TM: The two girls were adopted. My girls would not have lived if I had not taken them and they were too cute—they were mine. PC: What are their favorite toys? TM: Their toys are comical. Every year for Christmas my mom sends us a huge box with about 20 basketballs in them and by February they are all popped. The fact that they can pop the basketballs is comical. So they literally put the basketball in their mouth and if you bounce the basketball forget it, its over they are coming to get it and they’re popping it because they want to carry it in their mouth and the only way they can carry it is to pop it. So they are hilarious with the basketballs. PC: What are your favorite stories of your dogs? TM: [My dogs] have their temperament test and their canine good citizen test so when we would train for those things what we would do is, we would work one dog in my back yard and we would tie the other two up to a tree or whatever and make them watch. And one of them literally, when she was a puppy, pulled down the entire cemented-in basketball hoop in my backyard. And we were like ‘Oh my gosh, if anyone doesn’t think these dogs are strong they are out of their mind’. It was cemented into the ground, we laughed about it for too long. They are just a hoot. PC: How has your life changed since you got your dogs? TM: I think every aspect of my life has changed because they run the roost. Everybody knows, first it’s the dogs and then everything else. PC: What have your dogs taught you about life? TM: Loyalty. You come home, you’re in a bad mood—they’re there. You’re in a good mood—they’re there. It’s about commitment; no matter what happens, they are gonna be there for you. They know when you’re upset, they know when you’re happy, it doesn’t matter—they just stick by you.n | 19

Tips For Renting

Over the last few decades, life has given me the opportunity to live in many different states all over the country. Throughout this time I usually rented my home and always had my pets with me, which has given me a great deal of experience in knowing what to look for when renting with a pet. These tips have helped me to be successful and made it possible for me to always find a great home.




With P ets Written By Elaine Webster | Photography By Bailey & Banjo Pet Photography




7 | 21












BULLET Next month’s theme is: “DOGS IN ACTION” Want your pup featured in the NEXT issue of Pup Culture? Email us your best “Dogs In Action” photo to:


Faith The Dog Standing Up On Her Own Two Legs

Photo By Atort Photography

Written by Michelle Macirella



n 2003 when Jude Stringfellow’s son, Reuben brought home a small, half dead puppy with deformities, who would later be named Faith, Jude and her family had no idea how much their lives were about to change. The family would band together to help a runt of the litter who was marked for death, survive. And with that help, Faith would pull herself up on two legs and not only thrive, but serve as an inspiration to all.

them took over. They all took turns watching Faith around the clock. Even their dog, Matrix helped out. Jude says when Faith came into the house Matrix was sniffing on her all the time so he knew something was going on. He took her under his wing and was constantly checking on her, even allowing the family to put her in the crook of his belly so she could sit and get warm. Three weeks later at six-weeks-old the family started to believe Faith might make it.

Reuben’s friend had a dog named Princess who had recently given birth to a litter of puppies, many of which were born with deformities. Princess knew those particular puppies were too weak to survive, and she was instinctively killing them one by one. So Reuben’s friend had asked him to come help him bury the dead puppies. “They went to go bury the dead puppies. Not to save the live ones, but to go bury the dead ones,” Jude tells me. “Before he left I told him, ‘Do not bring one of those puppies home.’ And he was like, ‘Well mom, duh, they’re two weeks old and they’re dead, so I’m not going to be bringing any puppies home,’” Jude says. But while he was there Reuben managed to pull Faith out from under Princess, and smuggled her in his sweatshirt back home where he would have to explain this tiny cargo to his mom.

Now healthy and with only two back legs, the next task for the family would be to teach her to walk. To move around Faith had been scooting on her chest, something the vet said could eventually cause an abscess, so they had to get her up off her chest. Jude says they would literally sit her up over and over and every time she would fall down. They were trying everything they could think of to get her to walk. The kids even “taped” her to a skateboard by fashioning the duct tape so it would act as a belt. They showed her how to move around on the skateboard this way, but she had no interest. They tried different kinds of foods, all of which she would happily eat, but was not interested in moving to get them. Until one day when Jude’s daughter Laura was making herself a sandwich with peanut butter and Faith’s ears perked up. Laura encouraged Faith to hop towards “He said to me, ‘Mom, don’t get mad,’” Jude tells me as she the peanut butter and she did. Finally they had found something laughs. “I’m looking at his shirt and it’s moving around, and that would motivate Faith to stand up and move. Jude laughs and I jokingly said, ‘That better be Taco Bell.’ He presented her to says they found, “peanut butter was the answer to everything.” me and she looked disgusting. She was muddy. She was nasty. And her little head flopped over in his hand. I’m looking at her Around the same time the family got a foster puppy – a corgi and I’m thinking to myself this dog’s already dead. I turned to who instinctively liked to herd animals. He would run circles Reuben and said, ‘Don’t get your hopes up. This dog’s probably around Faith trying to round her up and get her to play, but she going to die tonight.’” couldn’t go anywhere. This went on for a few weeks until the day he took one of her toys and ran off. All of a sudden Faith stood But Faith survived the night and the next day Jude and her up and ran across the yard after him. She started hopping like daughters took her to the vet – a woman Jude had gone to school a rabbit and then leaping over things and falling flat on her face. with who she trusted completely. “If she had said, put the dog down I probably would’ve,” Jude says, “But she said, ‘Most people in this situation put the dog down, but I know you and if it has any viable life at all …’” Jude teaches ethics and says she believes if there’s any value at all we are intrinsically supposed to let it live. The vet warned them not to get their hopes up, but came up with a plan for them to take care of Faith and hopefully nurse her back to health. The first two to three weeks were extremely crucial. They bathed her and had to force feed her water and mashed up food mixed with baby formula to get her to eat and drink. The kids helped Jude and every two to three hours one of

Photo By Atort Photography | 25

Photo By Atort Photography

stops, which they did. And from there they met active military personnel who told them they should go to the Exchanges at the Army posts and on the Air Force bases to meet and greet the soldiers when they came in. But they had to get permission first, which is when they were contacted by Pat McGhee out of Seattle, WA at Ft. Louis. He told them he wanted to make a big celebrity meet and greet for the troops as they were either leaving for or coming back from Iraq, and he wanted Faith be a part of it. Faith loved participating and Jude says, “I’m not kidding, there were more people wanting to see Faith than the celebrities.” Faith continued to go to the Exchanges at Army posts and on Air Force bases and loved visiting with the troops. She’s also officially a sergeant in the Army. “She actually is commissioned. She’s an E5 sergeant. She has a rank and he [Reuben] is an E4 so she outranks my son,” Jude says laughing.

Photo By Patrick Nugent

Eventually though, she got the hang of it. Jude says she leads with her right hip when she runs and it looks like she’s skipping. Faith survived against the odds and was now thriving on two legs. Faith, “loves everything and everybody,” according to Jude. “She is the queen, the diva,” she says. “Everyone knows she’s alpha dog. She had to be. If she wasn’t alpha dog she wouldn’t have survived. She had to stand up on her own two legs. She had to make it on her own. She had to make the decision inside her mind and inside her body that, I’m going to stand up and make myself.” Jude says she believes Faith was born to help heal her family, who was going through a difficult period at the time as Jude and her ex-husband were going through a divorce. She decided to take Faith to visit children’s homes, hospitals and nursing homes so she could help inspire and touch the lives of other people the same way she had touched Jude and her family. Along the way they met a few veterans during their visits who suggested they make the veterans’ association one of their 32 | PUPCULTURE APRIL/MAY 26 DEC/JAN

As Faith’s popularity grew she started to receive requests for public appearances as well. She has been a guest on many shows including the Montel Williams Show, Ripleys Believe it or Not, Discovery, Animal Planet and, most notably, the Oprah Winfrey Show. To accommodate all these appearances Jude and Faith do a lot of traveling. Jude says Faith is the only dog in the world that flies First Class in her own seat. American Airlines is their airline of choice and they always put her in the first seat on the right side. Until one day when they assigned Jude and Faith seats on the left. Faith had already jumped into her usual seat on the right side, however, and refused to budge. Jude had to pick her up and move her to their new left side seats where, for most of the flight, Faith proceeded to lean over and stare at the poor passengers who were in her usual seats. Jude says Faith had flown that way about 60-80 times before the airline put them on the left side, which is why on that flight she was adamant those people were in her seat. Faith loves to fly and gets very excited in the airport. Once she gets on the plane, however, she just goes to sleep and no one hears a peep out of her until landing. Jude says most of the time the pilots will announce she’s on the plane and come out to get their picture with her. After 2010 American Airlines opened it up so Jude and Faith could also fly Economy which would allow more

“Peanut butter was the answer to everything.”

“She loves everything and everybody.” people, who previously couldn’t afford the First Class tickets, to book them for public appearances. So now Faith can fly in the bulk head in Economy or in First Class, but she still has to have her own seat. Jude tells me it can be challenging though to travel with a 27-pound-dog with only two legs. She can’t take any big luggage with her because she needs to carry Faith. Many times there is a long distance to walk within the airport and Faith can’t walk that far by herself, and she hates being in a stroller. So Jude must carry Faith on her shoulders while wearing a backpack on her back as her luggage. When I ask Jude how people and other animals generally react to Faith when they first meet her, she says it’s two-fold. “Because she is very very famous, they either recognize her and go, ‘Oh that’s Faith!’ and they’re all excited that it’s Faith, or they’ve never seen her and they’re like, ‘What the heck?’” Regarding other animals’ reactions Jude says, “Horses are like, ‘Whoa that’s really weird. What’s that?’ and a squirrel will stop in its tracks and go, ‘Okay … I guess I will run now.’ And ducks are the same way. Of course when she gets closer to them then they get up and go.” Jude laughs and tells me how she responds when people ask her how fast Faith is. “I always tell people she’s not quite as fast as a duck.” Her favorite treats are peanut butter, gummy bears and bananas. One of her best tricks is stealing sandwiches. Jude says Faith will check to see if you are looking and then she’ll steal your sandwich when you’re not. She’s tall enough so she can reach and take it right off the table. Her favorite toy is a dirty sock. “The dirtier the better,” Jude says. Faith will even take them right off your foot or out of the laundry if they’re dirty enough. Her favorite pastime is relaxing and sleeping under the bed. However in the spring and summer time she really enjoys being outside chasing ducks, cats – whoever runs across her path. The Stringfellow family has always loved animals, and has rescued most of their pets. Besides Faith, of course, who is half chow and the rest is a mix of labrador, pointer and beagle, they have three other dogs. There’s Matrix, who is half dachshund and half beagle, and Jude calls him the perfect dog. She tells me

while laughing, “Because he’s dachshund if he sees a squirrel he chases it. Because he’s beagle if he sees a squirrel he stands and points, so what happens is he’s pointing, but he’s hopping. And the squirrel is like, Are you serious? and Matrix is like, I’m going to get there. I swear to God I’m gonna get there.” They also have Yuuki – a chihuahua and boston terrier mix, and Molly – a pure breed basset hound. Jude also has a love of horses and has rescued many in her life. Currently they have two: Stryker, who is her daughter, Laura’s horse and Seamus who is Jude’s. And their four cats: Bob, Chuck, Joe, and Murray are keeping the horses company living at the barn where they are boarded. Last, but not least Laura also has a rat named Ella. Jude’s journey with Faith, and also dealing with her divorce has inspired her to write three books. Her most recent, Faith Walks, is a memoir about Faith’s life and her incredible journey of perseverance, hope and faith. In addition, Jude is currently working with director Michael Givens to get funding for the movie version of the book so Faith’s story can be told on the big screen. In December of this year Faith will officially retire from public appearances. She’ll be 10-years-old and Jude wants her to go out on a high note. She wants the public to remember her as a vibrant, healthy dog. However she will continue to visit the Army post and Air Force base Exchanges when she can and hopefully participate in the Wounded Warrior Project. Otherwise she will just be relaxing and chasing ducks.n

Jude’s most recent book, Faith Walks: A Memoir Of A Beautiful Life is available on and in print or e-book. Jude donated 30% of the book’s profits to C.A.R.E. (Community Animal Rescue Effort in TX) during the first quarter and will continue to donate 10% of the profits to them. You can stay up to date with Faith’s journey on her website at | 27



What is TTouch ? The Tellington TTouch or TTouch was developed by Linda Tellington Jones. TTouch is made up of ground work (or the confidence course), body work and leash work. TTouch can be used to address a number of behavior issues as well as to benefit general well-being. To find out more about TTouch or to find a practitioner in your area visit


BalanceLead Written By Carol Giotto | Photo By Michelle Macirella

TTouch works to get your dog into a balanced state: Mental, Emotional and Physical. The Balance Lead is a tool that can be used for physical balance. The balance lead can be used any time your dogs starts pulling on the leash. If your dog is pulling on the leash, they are out of balance. Most of their weight is on their front legs and their shoulder, neck and head are stretching forward instead of their shoulders being directly over their feet. The balance lead will work to bring them back into balance. To position the Balance Lead, you need a 6 foot flat leash (a flexi-leash will not work). If your dog is on your left with the leash attached to the collar, you would hold the handle end of the leash in your right hand (you can slip your hand through the leash handle, but you also want the flat part of the leash in your hand). You then take the leash end that is attached to your dog’s collar into your left hand. Now gently swing the leash so that the leash goes over (in front) of your dogs head fig. 1 and rests on his chest. You want to hold the leash so that your thumbs are pointing down toward your dog with some slack in the leash between your left hand and your dog’s collar. (see correction - you are not trying to snap the leash against them or pull them back with the leash - keep thinking of that sensation fig. 1) Your goal is to be walking at your dog’s shoulder. of stumbling and bringing yourself back into balance. Now that the leash is in place, you want to help your dog come back into balance. The sensation you are trying to create You also want to make sure the leash is at their chest. You do is the same sensation that you have if you trip over something. not want the leash to slip up against their neck or under their If you think about it, when you trip, you stumble and then chin. If you have a very small dog, you can place the leash (hopefully) you gain your balance and walk normally. Once diagonally on their chest between their front legs so that one you have the balance lead in place, if your dog is pulling, they leg is in front of the leash and one leg is behind the leash. This will be creating tension against the leash. You want to release will keep the leash from slipping up their neck. You may find the leash slightly, and then gently bring it back to their chest. that you need a longer leash with a shorter dog. This release should create that stumble sensation, then bringing Practice getting the leash in place and walking with your dog the leash back into place helps them to regain their balance. at your side in a quiet environment when they aren’t pulling. You may need to repeat this a few times before they come This way you will be effective at getting the leash in place to back into balance. It is very important to note, this is not a use it when needed. n 28 | PUPCULTURE APRIL/MAY

One Woman. One Dog. One Year of Healing. Written By: Rebecca Astheimer | Photography By: Minha Vida Photography 30 | PUPCULTURE APRIL/MAY

In an act of hope and faith, that night she created a blog entitled “The Abandoned Dog” in Tad’s honor, hoping to rally support and donations for his cause. The website depicted heart-wrenching videos of Tad in his dire state. Tiffany was well aware that Tad’s recovery, if it could begin, would rack up expensive medical bills that she could not afford to fund on her own. Crossing her fingers, Tiffany did her best to get the word out about Tad and prayed for support. Tiffany and her dogs spent the weekend nervously anticipating any downward turns in Tad’s health. His eyes were dripping and Tiffany continued to find blood on her porch, where Tad was sleeping (Tad had to be kept in isolation due to his fragile hile driving down a back road one March day condition and contagious ailments). However, on Monday in Montgomery, Texas, Tiffany Dieringer morning, Tad emerged victorious. Tiffany immediately took him noticed something strange on the side of to the office where she worked, where Tad was placed again in the road. Horrified, Tiffany realized the isolation. At the vet’s office, it was discovered Tad had ringworms creature trudging along in her rearview mirror was an abused and and hookworms, two different types of mange (demodectic and exhausted dog, wandering aimlessly in the midday sun without sarcoptic), badly-infected wounds, and yeast infections in his food or water. A veterinary technician and self-proclaimed animal ears. However, Tad’s increasing energy and appetite for life lover, Tiffany felt compelled to pick up the dog to at least offer encouraged Tiffany to hang on to him a little bit longer and pray him comfort in his final hours. that his wounds would heal. She scooped him up, took him home, and provided him with adequate shelter, food, water and companionship and mentally prepared herself for the worst. Little did she know she had just been introduced to her new best friend, Tad, the face behind Tad’s Toys, an organization now gaining international attention for its missions to assist rescue animals and provide them with necessities and toys. However, before Tiffany and Tad could start their campaign together, they both had to struggle through the next few months, proving to be the hardest of their lives.

To the staff and Tiffany’s relief, Tad began to show progress over the next few weeks. His appetite increased, and with that, came tail wagging and even the desire to play. Impressed by his recovery and strength, Tiffany’s co-workers began referring to him as “Totally Awesome Dog”, or Tad, for short. All in all, Tad had to be neutered, treated for worm infestations, infections in his ears and infected wounds all over his body, receive hydrotherapy, be treated for mange, and have six dewclaws and a mass on his side removed. Although Tad is still fighting the demodectic mange, ultimately his recovery, which took about a year, has been After looking the dog over, Tiffany quickly realized how severe completed. Tad’s injuries were. “He had suffered greatly and for a lengthy time. I knew that it would take quite a bit of money and care to get him to pull through—if he would even pull through,” said Tiffany. Covered in mange and fleas, Tad was emaciated and suffering from open, infected sores all over his body. His skin bled constantly, his fur fell out in chunks, and his paws were badly swollen. Even the slightest touch could send him howling. Heartbroken, Tiffany saw the pain in Tad’s eyes, but even deeper she also discovered his willingness to live. “Had Tad given up, had he stopped fighting, I would have let him go. It would have been hard, but I would not be selfish, as hard as it would be. I firmly believe that you can ‘tell’ when an animal is ready, but I could see after he ate his first meal that he was not ready to go,” Tiffany said. | 31

As Tad’s life began to turn around, Tiffany’s blog began gaining more and more attention. “Tad loves toys and as he became healthier and healthier, I started thinking about his following. I wanted him to do something—to give back”, remarked Tiffany. A local news station did a story on Tad’s battle. People all over the world began sending donations, raising around $5,000 for Tad’s cause. Catching Tad fever, various companies began shipping boxes of toys and food (including Tad’s favorite, Cheez-Whiz) to Tiffany. Animal health company Merial donated Previcox and Frontline to assist the treatment of Tad’s mange and inflammation, while

shelters in the Houston area. Tad and his friends ask donors to send toys to Wags 2 Whiskers Veterinary Hospital in Houston, where Tad was rehabilitated. “Tad’s Toys have such a huge impact on shelter dogs/cats. I hope that the program can eventually get to the point where I need help” said Tiffany. Today, Tad is a rambunctious, outgoing and friendly dog with an overwhelming zest for life. He is living proof that an animal’s life can do a complete 360 when they fall into the hands of the right owner. On “The Abandoned Dog” blog, comparing pictures of Tad the day he was picked up to present day is a visual representation of how important help can be to a dog’s life. “Be the change you wish to see in the world,” Tiffany says. “Turn around, go back... no one else is going to.”

Many people encouraged Tiffany to euthanize Tad based on his sickly appearance. However, when Tiffany refused to give up on Tad, he finally received the second chance he deserved. Tad’s Wellness Pet Foods sent truckloads of pet food coupons and Enjoy story is an inspirational one, but there are thousands of Tads out Yums sent Tiffany and Tad a broad variety of treats. Michael’s there who are still looking for their Tiffanys. Dogs, a dog training business located over an hour away from Tiffany, agreed to drive out to Tad’s clinic every two weeks to help get Tad on the right path to functioning normally in his new Tiffany emphasizes the fact that, like humans, the wounds of environment. The expression “It takes a village to raise a child” an abused animal run deeper than their physical ailments, and it rings true for Tad, and Tiffany is overwhelmed and deeply moved can take years to undo psychological damage. Tiffany says, “… by the amount of support she has received during his recovery. people always assume that rescuing dogs is easy and that you Tad’s Toy’s has evolved into monthly drives for various animal only have their health problems to fix...what they don’t realize 32 | PUPCULTURE APRIL/MAY

do not.” Tiffany wouldn’t have picked up Tad off the side of the road if she hadn’t been a trained professional. Simply making a phone call to the right shelter that can safely handle the situation can still save an animal’s life.

is most of these dogs come with severe mental problems that must also be addressed.” Tiffany is a trained professional with animals and it has taken a great deal of patience and a strong understanding of dogs and how they function in order to keep Tad and herself safe. Discussing Tad’s training, Tiffany remarks, “Tad is better than he was, but he is still too much for a lot of people and he frightens them. I know his triggers and I learn to avoid those at all costs until I can completely control the situation.” Tad requires consistency in order to make improvements, and that came from an educated trainer and Tiffany’s own experience. Tiffany emphasizes the importance of making sure that at no point should you ever allow yourself to become endangered around a dog. “Human safety should always come first,” says Tiffany. “Tad bit me multiple times within the first hour of bringing him home. Thankfully, being a state certified veterinary technician, I knew how to react and prevent too much damage... most people

One of the most uplifting aspects of Tad’s story is the amount of support Tiffany received in Tad’s name and cause. Although adopting and being on the frontlines of an animal’s life is the most instantaneous reward, incoming donations were also imperative to Tad’s recovery and should not be overlooked as a way to help out. Taking care of a dog like Tad is a huge undertaking, and it is important for prospective owners to recognize these facts while looking into adopting a rescue dog. If the pet’s needs seem overwhelming, there are other options to help out that are just as critical to an animal’s life, such as food donations. “If all the people who think, ‘there’s nothing I can do about it’ would get together, what a huge difference would be made. There are so many ways one can make a difference as far as the animal abuse goes... most people just don’t know how or what to do,” Tiffany remarks. Simply put, it’s important to recognize how huge of a responsibility it is to own a rescue dog like Tad. Yet if you feel inadequate to provide for the dog, your assistance is still needed, just in a different way. n

To learn more information Tad’s Toys visit their Facebook Page at:

To read more of Tad’s Story Visit: | 33

make your own

Written By Debra Thesing | Photography By Terri Parthum











425.577.1917 |



MaryAnn Aquilino

Certified Professional Groomer

Book with Me at : Happy Tails Pet Grooming, LLC.

We Groom Dogs Of All Sizes! 3180 Latta Road (Located in Ricci’s Restaurant Plaza) Rochester, NY 14612 585.865.3248

Written By Christine White Photos Courtesy of the ASPCA

he majority of those adorable puppies you see in the window at your local pet store are being bred by puppy mills. According to the ASPCA, nearly 80% of adults nationwide would not purchase a puppy at a pet store if they knew the truth of their origins “Sadly, last year consumers pumped millions of dollars into the puppy mill industry supporting the cruel and inhumane treatment of dogs,” said Rebecca Goldrick, ASPCA Senior Manager of Media and Communications. As dog lovers, many can’t help but to feel sorry for the puppies they see in cages at pet stores and may want to “rescue” puppies from their situation by purchasing them. However, what dog lovers don’t take into consideration is what goes on behind the scenes. Puppy mill dogs face deplorable conditions including inbreeding, over-breeding, minimal-to-no vet care, poor food and shelter, overcrowded cages and lack of socialization. Purchasing a puppy from the pet store does nothing more than to 36 | PUPCULTURE APRIL/MAY

create another puppy to be born to fill its spot — further supporting the puppy mill industry. “In my mind you’re committing an act of cruelty when you buy that puppy from the pet store. What you’re doing when you buy that puppy is sentencing its mother to a lifetime of misery in a puppy mill,” said Bob Barker, Special Investigator of the ASPCA Anti-Cruelty Initiatives in the documentary, Madonna of the Mills (the chronicle of one woman trying to put an end to puppy mills). Defined by the ASPCA as “a large-scale commercial dog breeding operation where profit is given priority over the well-being of the dogs,” puppy mills sell their “products” to brokers who distribute them to pet stores and online distributors at inflated prices. By emphasizing profit puppy mill breeders neglect their dog’s well-

being which leads to costly medical bills for consumers who unknowingly purchase an ill puppy from a pet store. Dr. Michelle Lamothe, DVM states in Madonna of the Mills, “If you ask me the question, ‘How many pet store puppies have a disease? I would say 100 percent.” “A puppy mill is a factory much like a paper mill or a rubber mill, where a product is being mass produced,” explained Elizabeth Oreck, National Manager of the Best Friend’s puppy mill initiatives. It is a large, legally-permissible government sanctioned industry and it doesn’t behoove most breeders from a business prospective to invest more than they legally have to in the manufacturing of these puppies.”

number of times a dog can be bred or how old the dog can be when it’s bred. There’s no requirement for daily exercise or nutritious food, and the cage only has to be 6 inches larger than the dog- not including the tail. A dog can be trapped in that tiny cage their entire lives.” According to a 2010 USDA Office of Inspector General (OIG) report, a USDA licensed breeder in Ohio, who had no veterinary experience whatsoever, operated on a pregnant dog that bled to death. Despite this incident and the fact that 40% of the dogs in his facility had gone blind due to an outbreak of Leptospirosis, the USDA Animal and Plant Health Service (APHIS) applied a 25 percent good-faith penalty reduction to the breeder (According to the AWA “a person who shows ‘good faith’ . . . [has] animals that are in good health that do not suffer as a result of the violations”).

Although the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) was passed by Congress

Photos Courtesy of Best Friends Animal Society

to help prevent animal cruelty among cats, dogs and laboratory animals, the puppy mill industry is unfortunately a legal industry that is often not regulated closely by the government. The AWA provides nothing more than a list of minimum standards that breeders licensed by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) are required to follow. Just because a breeder is licensed by the USDA, however, does not mean his dogs are healthy and it certainly does not mean that those dogs are being treated humanely since the AWA is loosely enforced and often favors breeders.

Another reason why so many people are unaware that most of the puppies you see in pet stores or buy online come from puppy mills is because of the way puppy mill breeders have chosen to deceive their customers. This type of behavior is able to continue because of the many things Congress did not foresee when the AWA was initially drafted.

“Under the AWA there’s no limit to the number of dogs a puppy mill or commercial breeder can have and there can be as many

According to Cori Menkin, Senior Director of the ASPCA Puppy Mills Campaign, Congress did not foresee that the internet was going to become a “safe haven” or platform for puppy mill owners to sell their dogs. Congress assumed that the puppy mill industry was going to be self-regulated since the consumers would presumably have the chance to see the puppy mill facility and refrain from purchasing a dog if the pets were being mistreated or

as 12 dogs per cage,” says Oreck. “There’s also no limit to the

the facility poorly kept. | 37

However, puppy mill breeders selling dogs directly to consumers over the internet are not required to be USDA licensed and they often trick consumers into believing that their dogs are not raised in puppy mills. The ASPCA lists three primary scams used by online breeders on their website. In the first scam called “bait and switch” an online retailer uses pictures of happy, healthy dogs to lure the customer into making a purchase. The buyer never meets the breeder in person or sees the facility. Most of the contact is conducted via e-mail and the buyer usually doesn’t see the dog in person. According to the ASPCA, “the scam is revealed when the dog is delivered and the buyer is faced not with the adorable puppy from the photos, but a sickly dog, often of a different color or with different markings. Most buyers feel too guilty to take the puppy back.” In the second scam called “Sanctuaries or Scamtuaries” some puppy mill breeders rope buyers in by appealing to their want to rescue dogs. They pose as rescue groups and claim to have rescued their pure-bred dogs from bad breeders, shelters or even from other puppy mills. The ASPCA tells however, “the scam is revealed by the price tag—the “adoption fees” for these dogs often exceed $1,000! Breed rescue groups usually charge no more than a few hundred dollars because their goal is not to make money, but to find wonderful homes for their rescues.” Another way puppy mill breeders try to disguise themselves is by boasting they are registered with the American Kennel Club (AKC). Many potential customers are relieved to hear they are buying from an AKC certified breeder because they assume it means that the breeders do not raise their dogs in puppy mills or mistreat their stock. Contrary to common belief the ASPCA tells us “…being AKCregistered means nothing more than your puppy’s parents both had AKC papers. While there are some AKC standards, they do not restrict puppy mills from producing AKC-registered dogs. The fact is, many AKC-registered dogs are born in puppy mills” A closer look at the ASPCA’s “No Pet Store Puppies” campaign, the Best Friends puppy mills initiatives and the Animal Welfare Act will show us how to avoid supporting puppy mills and what we can do to help those dogs who are already suffering as a result. The ASPCA “No Pet Store Puppies” campaign through which urges people to refrain from buying anything from pet stores that 38 | PUPCULTURE APRIL/MAY

Things to Know About Puppy Mills:

to refrain from buying products at pet stores that sell puppies. They also provide incentives for pet stores that are willing to convert to an adoption-centered business plan including complementary press releases, press conferences and the Best Friends seal of approval to name a few. “We’ve found that the stores we’ve helped convert to a more clean business model are doing really well,” said Oreck. The Best Friend’s sanctuary which contains 33,000 acres of land is the largest no-kill shelter in the country and home to dogs that have been abandoned by puppy mill operators. When dogs arrive at the sanctuary Oreck says that it’s often the first time they have been on solid ground, felt the warmth of the sun or the grass beneath their toes, the kind touch of a human or enough room to comfortably play. In addition to their puppy mills initiatives the Best Friends Animal Society also conducts their “Pup My Ride Campaign,” a transport program of dogs that are discarded by puppy mill operators.

sell puppies with their tagline “Don’t shop til’ they stop.” Their goal is to raise awareness about puppy mills and inform customers and animal lovers what we can do to help stop them. “We urge consumers to pledge not to shop at their local pet store for any items including food, supplies or toys if that pet store sells puppies. Convincing pet owners not to shop for anything, including puppies, at pet stores that sell dogs is the most effective way to stop the demand for puppy mill dogs,” said Rebecca Goldrick, ASPCA Senior Manager of Media and Communications. The ASPCA is also involved with the Puppy Uniform and Protection Safety Act (a.k.a. “The PUPS Act”) which is currently pending before Congress and would require breeders who sell directly to the public, for example via the internet, to become USDA licensed – a requirement which is not currently illegal for them to avoid.

Breeding dogs that are no longer profitable to breeders due to illnesses, agW or other “defects” are often euthanized and “Pup My Ride” provides a second chance for many of these deserving dogs. “There are approximately two to four million puppies produced in American puppy mills every year and there are about that many dogs being killed in shelters every year,” added Oreck. “It begs the question ‘why do we continue to manufacture a “product” when we already have so much of a surplus that we have to kill millions of them in shelters every year?’” According to Oreck we need to make adoption a more feasible option if we are to put an end to puppy mills. “The tide is turning and the industry is shifting. People are starting to realize that there’s a humane alternative to buying puppies from pet stores or online. The power of solving the problem is in the public’s hands— we all have to do the right thing.”

“Even though AWA standards are low, and even though enforcement is not as great as we’d like it to be, at least the PUPS Act would mean that there are eyes on those dogs, that somebody has the authority to go in and inspect those facilities, which they don’t right now,” reflected Menkin. Similarly, the Best Friends Animal Society is also urging customers | 39

Lilly’s Story

Written By Christine White Photography By


t age 10 Ally Del Monte dared to do what most other kids her age have not—she wrote a book. She possesses an intuitive insight, which surpasses most of her peers. What sets her apart is her tenacity and drive to help others. She is neither afraid to stand out from the crowd nor hesitant to defy society’s norms for a good cause; she stands her ground on important issues and refuses to sacrifice her morals for anybody. Ally’s dog Winkie was rescued from a puppy mill and she wanted to raise awareness among her peers to help prevent the same fate from happening to other dogs. Ally admits she was anxious while writing her book since many adults often dismiss what a 10-year-old has to say as unimportant. Since her dedication toward animals is stronger than any doubts that she or others may have had, Ally wrote an outline for her book and continued working on her goal. Five and a half months later Lilly’s Story was complete and Ally approached her mom Wendy Del Monte to take the next step and have it published. “When most 10-year-olds write a book they take pieces of paper and staple it together,” explained Wendy. “When Ally 40 | PUPCULTURE APRIL/MAY

began writing paragraphs and an outline, that’s when I started to take her seriously. I promised Ally that if she finished her book I would publish it and that’s exactly what happened.” Lilly’s Story is the chronicle of a puppy mill dog named Lilly who struggled to find her forever home even after leaving the puppy mill. We watch as Lilly goes from a puppy mill facility where the cages are “…small, dirty and cold” to a pet store where she is later purchased by her first owners. Although we would like to think that this is Lilly’s happy ending, she is eventually abandoned by her family and left on the street since taking care of her had become too much effort, a problem that many dogs unfortunately encounter all too often. She is then picked up by a back-yard breeder and is treated even worse than she was before. Lilly manages to escape from the breeder and is taken in by an animal shelter; she fears if she stays for too long and gets too old to become adopted, she will be euthanized. In the end Lilly is taken to the Little Angel Paws rescue, spayed and taught how to love and socialize again. Her new skills make her an ideal candidate for adoption and by the end of the book, she finally finds a forever home with a loving family.

Ally would like to spread the word about adoption and encourages people to adopt their pets from shelters rather than buying them from pet stores. That way we can save dogs like Lilly from being euthanized due to over-population. She also urges people to spay and neuter our pets so that “a little life isn’t created just to die” because of someone’s irresponsibility as a pet owner. Her incredible insight on animal welfare issues began at a very young age because taking care of and fostering shelter animals is and has always been an integral part of the Del Monte’s family dynamic. “Our children don’t know anything else but being in the house with foster animals,” said Ally’s mom. “When we foster our pets, we treat them like family. The children will get up as early

as 5 AM to help feed and take care of our foster animals in any way they can.” Wendy is Vice President of the Animal Welfare Society of New Milford where she has integrated Lilly’s Story into their education programs for children. She says that Ally’s book is a great tool since it is kid-friendly and easy for kids to relate to. Ally volunteers regularly at the Animal Welfare Society of New Milford, which she says has been nothing more than a gratifying experience, despite often having to say goodbye to the pets with which she has become so close. On her website, Ally talks about giving “last minutes of love” to animals that are passing so that they can feel the kind of love and comfort that every animal deserves to experience. “At the animal shelter I spend a lot of time sitting and talking to the animals,” said Ally. “When an animal dies it’s like having your own pet for a year and then giving them up. It’s hard but providing them with comfort and making sure they go to the vet is the right thing to do.” Ally has also initiated fundraising efforts for Pediatric Cancer Research, Hurricane Relief, and Pet Rescue. She is no stranger

to the idea that anyone can make a difference, regardless of age. In her blog, titled Loser Gurl, Ally writes about her weightloss journey and the bullies she has encountered along the way. Despite her critics, Ally’s blog entries continue to exude selfconfidence and drive her further toward her goal of helping her peers triumph over adversity by letting them know they are not alone. “One of the things we’re most proud of Ally for is her determination to make a difference,” said Wendy. “It only takes one person to read her book and she will have already made a difference. I encourage everyone to do the same because you’re never too young to make a difference.” n

For more information about Lilly’s Story visit: www.lillysstor To view Ally ’s blog, Loser Gurl visit: | 41

Written By: Kim Mayes


PUGPOSSESSED not just for Pugs...

Dog Fashions & Artwork 585.671.2273 • •

Photo By Bailey & Banjo Pet Photography

anine behavior specialists address an array of behavioral issues among dogs including anxiety, fear and dog-ondog agression. In extreme cases, canine behavior specialists must handle the aftermath of a situation in which a child has been severely bitten. One particular case involved a 10-year-old little girl named Ashley and a siberian husky named Duke. Duke belonged to the family’s next door neighbor, who worked long hours away from home. The neighbor lived alone and was absent frequently, during which the dog was tied outside for long periods of time, unattended..

Written by: Diana Nichols Pappert


The day of the incident was a hot summer day in July. Ashley had a dog at home and was taught by her parents that it is important to properly care for your pets. Ashley was worried about Duke because it was hot outside and he was tied up and all alone. She decided to check on Duke and noticed that his water dish was empty. She approached the dog and picked up his water bowl, which was also out of his reach, and walked home and refilled it. Ashley brought the water back to the

dog. Her mother had told her to let a dog sniff her hand before approaching, so the dog could be accustomed to her scent. Ashley set the water bowl down and approached Duke with her hand out. Duke didn’t come closer to Ashley so she moved even closer towards him. Duke didn’t move; he just froze and looked at her and he was slowly wagging his tail. Dogs that are friendly always wag their tails; at least that is what Ashley had been told. She decided Duke was friendly and moved towards him to pet him. When Ashley was close enough to touch Duke he lunged and bit her in the face. Ashley was taken to the Hospital for emergency treatment; her face was bruised, swollen and required numerous stitches. The child and her family were obviously very upset and angry. Ashley’s parents hired a lawyer to sue the next door neighbor because of his dangerous dog and the little girl’s injuries. Ashley’s parents lost the lawsuit in court. (Fortunately for Ashley she did recover from her injuries.) Unfortunately, dog bites happen all the time, fifty percent of the children in the US will be bitten by a dog before they are 12 years of age. Most kids are bitten from a dog they are familiar with, or their own family dog. While we cannot take back what happened to Ashley, we can examine the factors that led up to her being bitten and work to prevent future incidents. She should have never approached a strange dog, especially one that was tied up and confined to a small area. Her interpretation of Duke’s body language was inaccurate and it gave her a false sense of security. Ashley’s ideas of animal care are admirable but in this case she should have left the dog alone. Duke’s owner is also responsible for Ashley’s injuries. The dog should never have been left outside unsupervised. Duke is a high energy dog and is inadequately exercised, and under socialized—all of which lead to a dog that can become frustrated and aggressive. Most dogs are loving and wonderful companions, but all dogs can bite. So, take steps to educated children about what they can do to protect themselves if they ever encounter an aggressive dog.

At the age of 29 Amber Lee-Forrester has found her niche in the dog industry by creating urban-chic designs that are both functional and fashionable. Her line has become so successful that it will appear in six Century 21 (not to be confused with the real-estate company) stores across New York and New Jersey this spring and is soon to be the first dog collar company carried online for Macy’ A closer look at the life of Amber and the development of her career, however, reminds us not to be so quick to judge a book by its cover. As a self-proclaimed nerd, Amber spends her time discussing business with her entrepreneurial husband Gavin and constantly searches for resources to help her improve her business. “A lot of people focus on my glamorous side, but don’t see the real me,” explains Amber. “They just see the fabulous Amber that comes out to the trade shows and they think it’s like that


24/7 but it’s not. At the end of the day I go home and I’m a mommy and a wife. I read and I work on my business.” Amber’s entrepreneurial mindset and tenacity has helped her become the successful business woman she is today. With a degree in Marketing from Fordham University in her tool box Amber scored marketing and event-planning jobs at a few highprofile companies following graduation.

To strengthen her brand Amber, who is a self-taught designer, watched You Tube videos, took classes at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) and consulted her fashion-savvy friends to help her expand her fashion repertoire. She created the tagline “defining doggy style” to attract her audience’s attention and said she learned in whatever way she could to build herself and her company.

Although successful in her career, she stated the economy was starting to plunder and marketing and PR was the first budgets to be cut.

“I wanted something that was a bit tongue-and-cheek,” she stated about her tagline. “Taglines are important and I wanted something that was memorable and would stick out above all the rest.”

“I knew I was going to have to find something else to make a living so I took my love for dogs and fashion and went with my gut,” explained Amber. “I was inspired to do something different and to stand out.”

One of the most useful fashion lessons she learned from FIT was how to incorporate animal anatomy into her designs to produce functional and fashionable products with a competitive advantage.

Amber stated that the inspiration behind her line was her maltese named Bubba (sadly Bubba was later kidnapped on March 1, 2007). She remembers Bubba as a well-behaved, highenergy dog and she realized he liked wearing clothes because he got more attention while he was wearing them.

“There are quite a few Couture dog designers in my market, but their products are not functional,” reflected Amber.” “Most collars push against a dog’s trachea causing it to weaken over time. In severe cases wear and tear on the trachea will cause it to collapse, leading to death. I use my knowledge of animal anatomy to design harnesses that focus most of the pressure on the dog’s chest so that it does not damage his trachea.”

Amber wanted Bubba to wear clothes that weren’t too cutesy and more urban-chic, but nothing of the sort existed within the dog industry. Realizing that there was an unfulfilled niche for an urban-chic clothing line for dogs she took matters into her own hands and started designing sketches for her own line of dog-centric items.

With a solid business plan and a wealth of training and information at hand, Amber left her marketing position at FIJI Water in March 2008 to focus solely on Kane & Couture. Not | 47

Macy’s have recognized the influence that human fashion has on her line and have agreed to sell her products in their stores. Her new line Bubba Dog provides low-cost high-quality products and her new A1 collection which she describes as “…our lowest-priced collars and leashes yet, but still the high style,” can be expected on and in other major retailers very soon. She also plans to develop a line of ecofriendly collars in the fall. Looking back at her many accomplishments, her goal was to keep developing as a business-owner while also keeping the american dream alive for others.

everyone, however, was so sure about her career change. “When I told my grandmother that I was starting a dog collar company she thought I was crazy, but she didn’t tell me that because she didn’t want to hurt my feelings or stifle my dreams,” she laughed. “I’m glad she didn’t tell me that because when she looks at Kane & Couture now she says ‘I can’t believe that you’ve really made this happen.’” Amber attributes much of her success to a loving family and a strong relationship with God. Her dog Kane and her drive to help others have also inspired her to continue working hard to improve upon her business daily. “Kane is like a little person,” she laughed. “He travels with us often and he knows when to be well-behaved and when he can be wild and crazy. Sometimes when you’re working hard and you’re tired and you’re doing mundane computer work it’s nice to have a little doggie come over and sit on your lap.” “It makes me remember what my business is all about, which is the connection we all have with our dog. I’m happy to be doing something that is making other people happy and closer to their animals.” The idea behind Amber’s urban-chic line is to get people to stop and stare at the dog’s fashion just as much as they would be likely to stop and stare at someone whose clothing is eyecatching and original. She is pleased that major retailers like


“From where I started to where I am now has been a huge growth-process,” Amber reflected. “Doggie fashion was completely random for me, but every day I taught myself something different and my business has evolved into what it is today.” To those looking to start their own business Lee-Forrester would like them to know “You can’t eat an elephant in one bite,” and that to be successful you have to do something every day to learn and teach yourself, so that you can grow in your business— whatever it is. “There’s no such thing as failure if you keep going it’s just a lesson learned that will teach you how to do something differently,” concluded Amber.n

Yes. It’s for the Dog. (now look who’s begging)

Lifestyle & Studio Portraits Commercial Pet Photography 585.414.2469

Written & Photographed by Laura Kinsey


og enthusiasts across the country look forward to the dog-centric events that fill their calendars each month. If you’re a dog-lover you probably look forward to the Westminster dog show every year just as much as I do. Hosted by David Frei (whose lucky King Charles spaniel has a Sam & Tasha collar and leash, by the way) the Westminster Dog Show is arguably one of the most popular shows of its kind. According to the Bleacher Report this year’s event drew more than 3 million viewers making it the 3rd highest watched program of the evening. The pekingese won the title this year, while Martha Stewart’s Genghis Khan won best in his category. Here on a not-too-cold February evening in New York City I watch as the who’s-who of doggie fashion, the press and curious on-lookers gather at the Hotel Pennsylvania to kick off the annual Westminster Dog Show festivities. However the fun really gets going the Friday before the show at the aptly-titled Pre-Westminster Fashion Show and Gala. Whether you are a dog enthusiast, business-owner, fashion designer or simply a curious onlooker you can enjoy a doggie fashion show, dog weddings or “Puptuials,” networking opportunities and socializing for just $25. I should not fail to mention there is also an open bar. If you are skeptical, and perhaps dragged to the event by a significant other or one of your friends, this will help you. Every year the event begins with a little shopping at the Gold Paw Vendors’ booths. Companies like Bling Bone, Pawsitively Natural Goodies, and Fundle Pet Sling set up shop, making


the most of the opportunity to introduce themselves and their products to trend-setting pet owners while seizing the chance to catch the attention of the press. This year Bling Bone introduced some amazing pet carriers designed by Maria Buzina. They are made with 100% recycled Brazilian truck canvas, giving them a charming patchwork appearance and making each one unique. Spoil Me Rotten, a local dog treat company, laid out a beautiful Carnival-themed display that showcased their cleverly packaged treats, including sets that were perfect for

“This party is truly a feast for the eyes, and throughout the evening I heard squeals and gasps of delight as party-goers took in the sight of tiny pups decked out in rhinestones, tulle, sequins, plumage, capes, top hats, and tiny feather boas—sometimes all at once.“ Valentine’s Day gifts. The ladies from Pawsitively Natural Goodies had an equally tasty looking display featuring sweet potato tarts and cookies. And the media ate it up. There were representatives from CBS New York, The Examiner, Sports Illustrated, Pet MD, and RTN, a Russian TV Network scouring the floor for hot new products and photo-ops. My favorite part of the event was the extravagance and intricate detail of the masquerade-themed costumes that creative dog-owners created for their pets. I had visions of constructing matching masks for my dog Hugo and I, but I got… overwhelmed, let’s say, and decided I’d be more of an observer than a participant this year. This party is truly a feast for the eyes, and throughout the evening I heard squeals and

gasps of delight as party-goers took in the sight of tiny pups decked out in rhinestones, tulle, sequins, plumage, capes, top hats, and tiny feather boas—sometimes all at once. The magnificent Toshi-San was there, looking handsome in his black and gold outfit. Perhaps you recognize him from the MasterCard commercial that aired last summer? I think I spotted a Doggie Mom or two, and Ada Nieves, who coordinates the fashion show each year, was there with her famous troupe of chihuahuas, all looking fine. In fact, chihuahuas seemed to be the popular dog that evening – they seem to have the perfect demeanor for dressing up and looking fancy! Open bar or not, this event is a hoot and I love all that it celebrates – dogs, creativity, and commerce. If you are lucky to find yourself in New York City next February, by all means, get a ticket and get yourself to this great event. Flying solo or with your dog as your date, I guarantee you a good time. n | 51



Ada Simms is a canine behavior consultant and owner of Reward That Puppy! Inc. Dog Training in Rochester, NY.

: n o i t s e u Q

d she ths old an n o m 6 is of toys mix) that have a ton and Yorkie s y e s a e lt lw a a I wing in hirt. orkie (M th are gro nd even s e a te ts I have a M r n e a p H r . d nd o rm instea ite my ha s a baby. g on my a in loves to b it b p. Her en she wa s h p e w e k m e o h fr em to sto s e t s re u t o b o r m n e s h h e c out for hurts mu biting do oes not ys but the hen she d arper so it h w to s r s g e e h it in f b tt o e o e and g e bathke she als ow her on e out of th It seems li no and sh m . r y o e c p h p u to ll p r te o a ll I always the chair e she is sti solutions? get off of st becaus to r ju e h is have any ll it u te s o I y n o e D h . vet say w ample, to bite me ay. For ex wl and try ro g d get her w n a l bark en she wil -Raquel room. Th psie, NY Poughkee

Dear Pup


A puppy at 6 months of age should be past the nipping stage, unless the nipping has been reinforced unknowingly by the owner. Sometimes, because these little puppies are so huggable, we handle them too much and they are not taught to have impulse control or how to relax. This puppy might not have been socialized with other puppies at a young age. Puppies learn bite inhibition by playing and mouthing other puppies. When they bite too hard the other puppies might give a yelp and stop the play, or the other pups might not play with this biting dog and ignore him. The most important advice is to seek a reward based dog trainer/behavior consultant as soon as possible to help you work on these issues before they become ingrained behavior. The growling and biting need to be addressed immediately. If you reprimand the puppy for these actions, these behaviors most likely will increase in severity. Please seek professional help. In the meantime, begin by not talking to the puppy when he nips you. He wants your attention. Saying NO and touching him in any way can actually be very rewarding for him. All play and interaction must stop immediately when the puppy nips. Gently put him down on the floor and leave the room and close the door. If he is barking do not open the door. Wait for 5 or more seconds of silence, return and ask the dog for a Sit and reward that. Whenever the pup bites, repeat this action of leaving the puppy. You might have to do it 3 times or 20 times. Once the puppy realizes there is no reinforcement for biting but he gets rewarded for being quiet and sitting, most likely you will see the biting behavior fade. It might get worse for a bit as he becomes frustrated by the new rules, but don’t give up! It is important to be consistent with not reinforcing the biting with attention (be it negative or not). Teach the puppy ‘Up’ and ‘Off ’ so these behaviors will be on Cue (command). Entice the puppy to jump up on furniture. Say YES or use a clicker to “mark” the action of jumping up, and give a small tasty treat (cheese or chicken work well). When the puppy is on the furniture, throw a treat on the floor and say Off. Say YES or click the action as the puppy gets down. Practice every day and reward the dog for learning these cues. Soon the pup should respond to Up and Off and you can start fading the treats and then reinforce with treats intermittently.

Have a question for our panel of experts? Email for a chance to get some expert advice in our next issue!

Teaching a puppy to Relax on a Mat (there are many YouTube training videos on this) and teaching him to run into his crate on cue are both very helpful behaviors as well.

Ada Lana-Simms

Member of • International Association of Force Free Trainers • Professinoal Pet Guild—Force Free Trainer


THE GREY COTTAGE pet spa & boutique

Dog & Cat Grooming Paws For A Moment 585.329.2162 •


Written By Gabriella Martinez | Photography By Luminaria Photography When I first received my package of Zuke’s: Mini Naturals for review I had mixed feelings. At first, I was excited because Zuke’s has been one of my favorite makers of treats for my dogs for quite sometime, but I was a little bit disappointed because I was sure my 6-year-old labrador retriever, Andrea, wouldn’t be able to have any. Andrea suffers from some severe food allergies (chicken being her main allergy) and usually cannot participate in any food reviews that I conduct. Her brothers however, have no problem picking up her slack. When I finally looked at the bag and saw they were rabbit flavor, I was elated because this was a review she could finally participate in. Having a dog with allergies, the first thing you look for are the ingredients. I can’t count the amount of times I would look at a treat that would say ‘apples & yogurt’ only to find out that the first ingredient was chicken. So I was pleasantly surprised when I turned over the bag to read that the first ingredient was rabbit followed by ground rice and ground barley. The treats are a small, soft treat (perfect for training) and only 3-calories each, so you don’t have to feel guilty if you feed your dog more than one. Zuke’s is based out of Durango, CO and stands for only fresh, natural pet nutrition as well as the sustainability of our planet. Their boxes are made from 100% recycled paperboard with 100% wind energy. Even better, a portion of every sale is donated to the Dog & Cat Cancer Fund. All of Zuke’s Treats are made in the USA with USA sourced meats, fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and they contain no wheat, corn or soy. Their treats also contain no artificial colors, flavors or by-products—something I wish more treat makers would do. Needless to say, Andrea was more than happy to help conduct this review. As soon as I opened the bag, she greeted me tail wagging with anticipation. Once she tasted it, she wanted to eat the whole bag. Andrea definitely recommends Zuke’s Mini Naturals: Wild Rabbit Formula to all of her four-legged friends—especially those suffering from allergies.

Learn more about Zuke’s Natural Pet Treats at: 54 | PUPCULTURE APRIL/MAY




@pupculturemag | 37





We can’t buy

your love But we can sure come close to it!


Special Needs

Good w/ Dogs

Good w/ Cats

Good w/ Kids


Animal Aid & Rescue Foundation (AARF) of Seahurst, Washington is proud to introduce you to a sample of their most eligible bachelors and bachelorettes. If you feel a spark and would like to make a “love connection” please contact AARF at or visit their website at to arrange a date.



Genuine brown-eyed beauty seeks family to share happy memories and good times; enjoys car rides, playing fetch & tug of war. I’m a very optimistic girl who enjoys being dressed to the nines just as much as I love sports. If you love sports and exercise and can appreciate a dog with a six-pack, give me a call. P.S. I’m a good kisser ;-)

Happy young chap looking for the right person to sweep me off my feet. I’m an equal opportunity lover which includes the likes of all types of canines and felines. I listen really well (like all men should) and I’m always up for a good cuddle. If I sound like your type of guy, hit up my digits and I promise to be your best friend for life.



Friendly, outgoing puppy seeks a loving family and a new beginning. After starting my life in a puppy mill I have a few obstacles to overcome; although the breeders have broken me down in body, they will never be able to take away my spirit and passion for life. I love the other dogs at my foster home and I’m also a staff favorite. If you think I’m your kind of guy, go for it.

Gentle nanny with active social life seeking a fulltime position. I’m full of energy and have vigor for life that surpasses most. I spend as much time as I can with my foster parent’s children and would do anything necessary to keep them safe and happy; I’m best friends with their Chihuahua, though not so keen on cats. If you have room for me in your heart and in your home, call me.


Photography By Bailey & Banjo Pet Photography

Pup Culture Magazine April/May