Volume1 Issue 2

Page 1


Brehmer Barks Wow! So much has happened both personally and professionally for us since the last issue came out, and we have been completely overwhelmed by the support that you all have shown us. We hoped that you would enjoy the first issue, and overall we received some great feedback, so thank you. We also received some great suggestions that we will be incorporating into the magazine over the next few issues. As you may have seen on our Facebook page, we lost two of our very special beagles in the month of April to canine cancer. Maddie and Sassie were not only special to us, but to many others as well. We will miss them terribly, but to honor them you can see their pictorial tributes in this issue. We hope you enjoy this "working dogs" issue. We were thrilled to discover many different types of working dogs, such as dogs who shoo geese away, dogs who help humans in need of special assistance, and dogs that serve and protect humans. Check out ways to work with dogs in Canine Careers, and see why and how one woman chose to become a veterinarian in our cover story. As we slide into the hotter summer months, we've got a range of summer-themed ideas to help you and your dog not get burned. Articles in this issue will teach you how to whip up a cool treat for your dog in Let's Cook, alert you to the dangers of heat exhaustion in Safety 101, and help you dive into a fun way to cool off your dog in Dogs @ Play. We continue to look forward to taking this journey with all of our fellow dog lovers in the Triangle, and to hearing from you so, together, we can be partners in creating a better life for your dog. Sincerely, Chuck & Angie Brehmer (and Morrie, Millie, and Elsie) Publishers/Editor-in-Chief

Morrie Photo by Jamie Downey


Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog









Photo by Lindsey McDaniel

1. ALAnA Bossen Alana Bossen, a junior at Duke University, is President of the Pre-Veterinary Society. She is a biology major who volunteers with several animal organizations, including the Duke Canine Cognition Center. Alana is passionate about dogs, German Shepherds in particular, and hopes to pursue a career in animal behavior and psychology. Her hobbies include reading, traveling, and photography.

2. ReBeccA BRoDney Rebecca Brodney is a junior at Meredith College, majoring in English. In her spare time, she enjoys exercising, reading, writing, and finding new and creative ways to spoil her dog, Buttons (aka Fluffrat). Buttons is a ten-year-old Shih Tzu-poodle mix who is virtually untrained. Rebecca, however, says she is the one who has been trained to give into his every whim, whether it be a second dinner or scouring the house for his favorite toy!

3. seAn DRummonD Sean Drummond is the owner of two dogs and two children. He stays at home with his two kids while trying to maintain a freelance writing business.

4. DonnA s. eLLioTT Donna S. Elliott, who wrote this issue's article "Love is the Best Medicine," understands how loving a dog can change your life. For 15 years, Donna was blessed to love a little brown dog named Reason, and now she shares her love with her two dogs Jules and Luna, who continue to teach her how to live with an open heart and a happy tail, and to be grateful for every smile.

5. DR. LisA FARLing Dr. Lisa Farling, a 1999 graduate of the NC State College of Veterinary Medicine, once worked as a CPA in the public and private sectors before realizing that her lifelong passion for animals could be channeled into a highly rewarding life as a veterinarian.


Volume 1 • Issue 2


Photo by Lindsey McDaniel

The Triangle Dog


Dr. Farling's other interests include gardening, running, lifting weights, and, most importantly, living vicariously through her children, Wyatt and Simone. The four-legged family members include Dot Dot, a chow mix, Odie, a Chihuahua mix, and Omar, a tough cat and veteran of the streets who now enjoys a much-deserved pampered existence.

6. LisA giAnnini, cVPm Lisa Giannini is a 1987 graduate of the Indianapolis School of Veterinary Management. She earned the esteemed designation of CVPM (Certified Veterinary Practice Manager) in 1994. Her special interests are teaching and empowering team members, comforting pet owners and their family pet companions, and she has a special place in her heart for senior patients. She spends her free time playing soccer, creating art with found and recyclable objects, spiritual guidance through meditation, chakras and universal energy, and being with her 2 rescue cats, Braveheart and Dirt, and her very fluffy rescued Great Pyrenees, Sandy Marie.

7. ginny s. giLLikin Ginny S. Gillikin graduated from Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, VA, with a print journalism/communications degree and an English minor. She also has a certificate in graphic design from Wake Tech in Raleigh, NC. She enjoys music, photography, and travel. She writes for her personal enjoyment, and has written for publications in Raleigh, NC, and Blacksburg and Richmond, VA.

8. BeTh JohnsTon Beth Johnston is a life-long animal lover who first groomed the family dog in the driveway at 10 years of age, and has been grooming animals for over 20 years, working with dogs, cats, rabbits, and horses. She has also successfully competed in canine events including conformation, rally obedience, and agility. She was a foster mom for the Central Carolina Poodle Club and helps rehabilitate and place poodles in forever homes. She is a certified member of the National Dog Groomers Association of America



Photo by Lindsey McDaniel







and is certified with the American Red Cross in Canine First Aid and CPR. Beth currently owns and can be found grooming her canine friends at Beth's Barks N Bubbles, LLC in Durham, NC.

time does freelance reporting for the Raleigh Public Record and feature writing for The Triangle Dog. She lives in Raleigh with her husband, dog, and two cats.

9. kRisTinA keLLy

13. mARiAnA RiVeRA RoDRíguez

Kristina is the proud mother of two adorable Beagles and devoted animal advocate. The Cleveland native enjoys camping, canoeing, reading, and painting. As a Carolina Hurricanes fan, she also writes for Cardiac Cane, a Hurricanes blog.

Mariana Rivera Rodríguez is a freelance writer with a B.A. in English and Communications from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. She enjoys writing, reading, and hiking the Eno River and Jordan Lake trails. She has been living in Durham since 2008 with her boyfriend and their Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Ofélia.

10. DR. BRiAn LAPhAm Dr. Brian Lapham received his veterinary degree from the University of Florida in 1999. His true passion lies in preventative care—preventing disease before it can manifest itself as cancer, osteoarthritis, epilepsy, or the like. Outside of the hospital, Dr. Lapham is often occupied with his family, woodworking, home improvements (which never seem to end!), and running. Included in the mix are his menagerie of pets, currently including two cats, Pia and Kitten, and Elizabeth the guinea pig. Dr. Lapham's daughter is still vying for a puppy— coming soon!

11. shAnnon mARino Originally from Connecticut, Shannon Marino moved to Raleigh in August 2010. She is currently a site director at an after-school program in Chapel Hill. She and her three younger sisters grew up in a house with mainly dogs, but also had, at different times, two cats, a guinea pig, and a bird. She has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Southern Connecticut State University. She's a self-described geek for the supernatural/fantasy, and, though she can't seem to manage being up that early, loves the early morning right before the sunrise.

12. JenniFeR noVeLLi Jennifer is from Statesville, NC where the hills are rolling and people talk slowly. Conversation is one of her most treasured activities, whether on a porch or busy street. She is an editor and copywriter for a health content creation team, and in her spare

14. BARBARA shumAnnFAng, Ph.D, cPDT Barbara Shumannfang has been teaching Triangle-area dogs to be well behaved since 1999 at Top Notch Dog, LLC. Veterinarians and rescue groups recommend her for her effective, gentle approach. She specializes in Training for Life: training that works both for her clients’ busy lives and for every stage of their dog's life. Barbara is the author of Happy Kids, Happy Dogs: Building a Friendship Right from the Start. Visit her at topnotchdog.com.

15. ALLison snyDeR Allison Snyder has written food essays and recipes that have appeared in the Raleigh News & Observer and The News of Orange County. She has co-authored a yet-to-be published cat memoir. She lives in Hillsborough, NC, with her husband, daughter, and Jack Russell terrier, Millie, who sampled the dog stars (recipe herein) and pronounced them "sublime."

16. DAVe ThomAs Dave Thomas is a Virginia native that migrated to Raleigh three years ago on a whim with his beautiful new bride, Rhiannon, and their three very fat and fluffy cats, Zipper, Squeaker, and Pepper. Dave works at NC State and the Cardinal Club in downtown Raleigh, volunteers for the Wake County Animal Center, and serves as senior editor for this fine publication. In his spare time, when he can find it, Dave enjoys playing sports, reading, writing, and pampering his expecting wife.

The Triangle Dog

Volume 1 • Issue 2



Kasey is not your typical law enforcement canine. She isn't the conjured image of an imposing German Shepherd or Belgian Malinois that immediately springs to mind when one thinks K9 cop. She's actually on the opposite end of the spectrum, image-wise. Kasey, a second-chance dog adopted from the Wake County Animal Shelter, is a 6-year-old yellow Labrador mix, one of the friendliest and most gentle breeds of all dogs.

Master Patrol Officer Eddie Truelove and Kasey

Kasey's sociable passivity makes her the ideal dog for her duties at Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU) as an explosive materials detection canine. Her approachable appearance and extremely pleasant demeanor allow her to intermingle with airport passengers as she strolls through the terminal with an air of confident familiarity, as if she was on an evening stroll around her own neighborhood. "That was very important to us, that the dog could be out in the public, and we make sure that they are out in the public a lot…that is a key thing," said Mindy Hamlin, marketing communications manager at RDU, referring to how the presence of Kasey and Trouble, RDU's other K9 dog, reassures the general public of their safety without the fear that they might associate with another breed. And in a sense, RDU is Kasey's neighborhood, and every traveler is her neighbor. She greets them all with smiling eyes and a wagging tail, but her nose is always on guard, always on vigilant alert for explosive materials. Her natural tameness comes into play in the event she detects explosive material. Drug dogs in law enforcement are taught to be aggressive upon detection of the scent of narcotics. But explosive material detection dogs are much more passive upon detection, as scratching or nudging of a suspicious package could have disastrous consequences. To become a "bomb dog," Kasey and her handler, Master Patrol Officer Eddie Truelove, went through a rigorous 16-week training course with the Raleigh Police Department. Officer Truelove likened the training to a more intense version of training your dog to do simple commands such as sit, stay, and come. "Just like you would train a dog at home, basically. You just do it over and over and over again until they figure out, 'Hey, I need to start remembering this particular type of odor,'" said Officer Truelove. 10

Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog

Photo Courtesy of Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority


Neuse River Golden Retriever Rescue, Inc. by Wendy Wilson

Photo Courtesy of NRGRR

Neuse River Golden Retriever Rescue, Inc. (NRGRR) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to helping unwanted Golden Retrievers through rescue, rehabilitation, and adoption. Dogs enter the program from a wide variety of situations. They may be the products of broken homes, surrendered because of changing family situations or family disinterest, found as strays, or dropped off at shelters. Our territory includes the eastern part of North Carolina from Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill, north to Virginia,south to South Carolina, and east to the Atlantic Ocean. When dogs enter the program they are given a medical exam, neutered, and then placed in foster care where they will be loved as a member of the family until a permanent home can be found. Over the past several years, as with many rescue organizations, we have had to help many more dogs with much more complicated medical and other behavioral conditions—forcing our expenses to rise. At the same time, donations have not increased to match our expenses. At the present time, we are in need of more fosters homes. We also need donations, large or small, to help us help these beautiful dogs. If you cannot become a foster or make a donation, we can always use other volunteer help and, of course, you can also adopt one of our wonderful dogs.

Please visit us at: www.goldenrescuenc.org or on our Facebook page to see how you can help. 12

Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog


A career in small animal medicine unfolding

by Jennifer Novelli

When Kate Boynton was a little girl, she would ride over to her grandfather’s house with her parents, leap from the car as soon as it rolled into the driveway, and run into the backyard, calling out to him. He would call back and soon be greeted by his petite admirer. As a child, Kate was unlike her siblings—she lined her room with aquariums full of tadpoles and caterpillars she nurtured as they grew and matured—and spent a lot of time outdoors with her grandfather. They would dig up worms in the garden, fix safety pins to fishing rods, and point out their favorite birds. Nature fascinated her. "I would find an ant hill and dig down until I found the queen," she recalled. "The mystery was too intense, I couldn't help myself." As she got older, her love of nature evolved into a passion for environmental conservation. As an undergraduate at the University of New Hampshire, she decided to focus her studies on animal science. Then, after graduation, she got a job as a veterinary technician while she contemplated whether she should go back to school to pursue a career caring for animals—or people. "I thought about applying to medical school, then I realized I have more compassion for animals than humans," she admitted. "My dad would always say, 'Just do something you are happy doing.' So I thought, we have domesticated these animals and they are dependent on us. Someone has to step up and take care of them. Someone has to be able to recommend what is best for their care." Sufficiently convinced veterinarian was the right career path, Kate turned her focus to her next challenge.

Typically, competition is tough to gain entrance into one of the country’s short list of veterinary medicine schools; North Carolina State University’s program being one of the best and thus, most difficult. According to a March 2011 U.S. News and World Report survey, North Carolina State University's College of Veterinary Medicine ranks third among the 28 surveyed veterinary schools in the nation. Despite the odds, and distance from her home in upstate New York, perseverance paid off and Kate now prepares for graduation in May 2011 with 80 of her classmates. "Some are pursuing careers in equine animal medicine, and nationally we need food animal veterinarians, but I've known for awhile that small animal medicine is the place for me," she beamed. "Our last year has been 100% clinical, meaning we've been the liaison between the animals that come to be treated in our hospital, and the clinician and the owners." Much of small animal medicine requires good communication skills. As a veterinarian in this field, it is important to make the clients feel as though you understand them—their fears and joys—and that you give them all the information they need to make educated decisions about their pet’s care. It is clear that though she claims more compassion for animals, Kate enjoys working with people—and excels at it. And when she takes time to think of her biggest influences, she is quick to thank a grandfather with a green thumb and a father with honest advice for encouraging her to pursue a life and career she loves. Kate lives in Cary with her husband, Kevin, (cover) dog, Ellie, and cat, Tutters.


Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog


"Gotta get up before the birds," Michael Cardella, owner of Goose Masters Triangle, said. The birds he is referring to are Canada geese, which, for many people and businesses, are a nuisance. Their droppings are messy and present health concerns. However, many are unaware of the working world of goose dogs. Goose dogs are Border Collies trained to unnerve geese into finding new homes. Geese are unaware of Border Collies' gentle nature, and they are compelled to flee to a safer habitat. The practice is environmentally safe, humane, and effective. Cardella explained that Border Collies are a good fit for the job because of their abundant energy and their innate drive to stalk and intimidate prey without harming or touching them—a unique instinct, as most other working dogs, like Labradors, instinctually want to retrieve their prey. His working Border Collie, Pedro, demonstrated this drive. In a deep voice, barely above a whisper, Cardella commanded Pedro to "come by." Pedro, previously waiting impatiently in the down position in front of Cardella, did not need to be told twice. In a split second, what once was the distinct form of a dog became a blur of black and white as Pedro sprinted clockwise around the large lake. Although no geese were present at the lake, as the workaholic goose dog had previously encouraged their relocation, the Border Collie was still content to follow Cardella's commands. When more than a hundredfeet away, Cardella, in the same quiet but commanding voice, ordered Pedro to lie down. In a 16

Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog

by Alana Bossen

millisecond, the once-running dog hit the ground in the down position. The impressively trained dog looked impatiently at his owner, hoping to be commanded to run again. Unfortunately for Pedro, Cardella was busy regaling the history of Goose Masters Triangle. Goose Masters Triangle, established in 2009, is a franchise of Goose Masters, a goose control services provider that, according to their website, has "raised, trained, and handled three national champions." Owner and President Kent Kuykendall has been working with Border Collies for over 40 years. He won the 1995 Purina Herding Dog of the Year, the 2000 Working Border Collie Herding Dog of the Year, as well as the 2000 National Nursery Championship. Cardella is trained under Kuykendall, and is committed to the craft. He stated that he would not change his job for anything, even with the long hours, which neither Cardella nor his dogs seem to mind. In fact, Cardella stated that after a long day of work, his dogs are still full of energy and eager to work more. Case in point, Pedro, able to wait no longer in the down position, went to dash off again. Cardella, quick to notice the insubordinate action, bellowed, "What are you doing?" The correction settled the dog back in the down position. The bond between Cardella and Pedro is obvious. When Pedro was released from the down command, he was back in front of Cardella less than half a minute later. Pedro, who Cardella describes as an outgoing and affectionate dog, was rewarded with a pet on the head. One can tell that Pedro would not change his job for the world either.


Bed bugs. The name conjures up visions of oval, wingless, parasitic bloodsuckers that inhabit mattresses, box springs, and bedding. Also known as Cimex lectularius, bed bugs feed on humans and other warmblooded animals such as dogs and cats. They can be found in couches, upholstery, and clothing, as well as cracks in floors and walls. Usually active at night while people are asleep, adult bed bugs are about one-fifth to one-quarter inch long (the size of an apple seed). They are rust-red in color and have a flattened body. They have six legs, two antennae, and small, protruding eyes. The bugs appear larger and swollen after eating. According to researchers at the University of Florida, trained dogs can detect live bed bugs with 96 percent accuracy. Beagles, terriers, and hunting dogs are most often used for bed bug detection. Long utilized for finding bombs, drugs, and even termites, these scent-detecting dogs are rewarded with food and treats when they find the bugs. They sniff around furniture and along baseboards, searching for pheromones, which can give a room a sweet, musty odor. Bed bug-seeking canines often produce speedy results with less expense. A dog can find evidence of bed bugs within minutes, while it may take a human several hours to search a room. According to Triangle Pest Control, dogs can detect 95 percent of bed bugs, while humans can find only 30 percent. Greg Baumann, a former senior scientist at the National Pest Management Association, stated in a 2009 article on www.yahoo.com that there were about 100 trained bed bug-sniffing dogs that were working in the United States at the time. That number is sure to have risen in the last two years. 20

Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog

by Ginny S. Gillikin

Though bed bugs were mostly eradicated after World War II through the use of DDT, which was sprayed or dusted on and around a bed, a resurgence began in the mid-to late 1990s. The bugs became more prevalent in apartments, houses, nursing homes, private schools, hospitals, office buildings, and even expensive hotels and cruise ships. A National Bed Bug Summit was held by the Environmental Protection Agency in April 2009 because infestation had become so rampant. Entomologists and pest control professionals blame the increase in bed bug infestation on the recent banning of powerful pesticides, increased travel to and from developing countries, and an underground economy, which includes illegal aliens and immigrants residing in low-income apartments. According to a recently published clinical review in the Journal of the American Medical Association, there is no evidence that bed bugs transmit diseases. However, scratching the red, itchy welts caused by bites can lead to infection. Bites most commonly occur on the face, neck, back, hands, arms, and legs—areas exposed while a person is sleeping. Some people have an allergic reaction to the bites, while others develop a rash. Psychological effects such as fear, paranoia, and embarrassment have been reported by victims of bed bug bites as well. It takes a lot of time, money, and effort to eradicate the problem. However, most pest control companies can exterminate the location after a dog or a human has found the source of infestation and assessed its severity. The National Entomology Scent Detection Canine Association (NESDCA) has a list of certified providers of bed bug-sniffing dogs on its website, www.nesdca.com.


Is it good or bad to give my very heavy-coated Golden Retriever mix a serious cut for impending hot weather? Will it help her stay cool if we get rid of a lot of that fur?

ASK THE GROOMER by Beth Johnston, owner of Beth’s Barks N Bubbles, LLC


Double coats, when properly cared for, can act as insulation from hot temperatures as well as cold. In the South, it is very important to properly care for these heavy-coated dogs as many breeds originated in a very different climate than the hot and humidity of North Carolina. The undercoat is the layer of softer, lighter hair that lies close to the skin. The topcoat, or guard hairs, lie on top and do not have to be removed if the undercoat is removed sufficiently. Heavy-coated breeds benefit tremendously from a good bathing and deshedding treatment. This is considered a special service as it involves using a differently formulated shampoo that is rich in Omega's and has ingredients in it that help release the dead undercoat. Removing as much of this undercoat as possible is important as it allows the double coat to function properly. In some cases it may be necessary to trim the dog down for its own comfort and well being, or at the very least, do a "strip clip," which clips the chest and belly hairs all the way down to give the dog added relief when they lie on cool surfaces. In cases where dogs may suffer from extreme matting, skin infections, hot spots, or allergies, it is preferable to clip the dog all the way down, removing the entire coat, to give immediate relief. Be prepared to wait for re-growth; many dogs can take up to one year to fully grow their coat back in. So the bottom line is, as a pet owner, be prepared to devote a lot of time to managing the coats of these double-coated breeds. Some may require little to no grooming, but others can take tremendous amounts of time and hard work to maintain. Each case is unique and you should have your options explained to you, risks and benefits included, by your local grooming shop or veterinary clinic.


my older Sheltie slips and slides all over the floor. What can I do to help prevent a fall and give her better traction?


There are many things you can do to help your senior pet. First, check to see that the pads are free of hair. Shetland Sheepdogs have been known to grow quite a bit of hair on their feet; this can make walking difficult in a couple of ways. One way is the hair acts almost as a sock and prevents the pads from properly gripping the walking surface. Clipping the hair on the bottoms of the feet helps to ensure that the pad, and not the slippery hair, is making contact with the ground, thereby improving traction. The second thing is excess hair could actually prevent the nails from making good contact with the ground. Again, this takes away traction and it can also interfere with the normal filing or wear the dogs nails should be getting while on walks. With seniors who have decreased mobility, you may need to trim the length of the nails down so that the foot can bear weight normally. And don't forget to do everything you can around the house, placing runners or rugs on floors that are slippery can also help your pet gain traction and avoid a fall. The Triangle Dog

Volume 1 • Issue 2


DOGS @ PLAY Photo by Uniwolf Photography

Jumping for Joy Dock diving was introduced as a sport for canines in the late 1990s. Participants in this competitive activity are not your typical lake-paddling, poolside swimmers. Dock diving dogs are specifically trained by their owners to maximize jump length and height from a platform 35 feet long, 2 feet above the water surface. Training techniques, and length of training, depend on the competitor. The drop from the dock may be intimidating to newcomers. Jay Harris, president of Carolina DockDogs, stresses the importance of trust and incentive if you are considering this sport for your four-legged friend. You never want to push your dog from the dock. Coupled with patience, finding the right motivation, whether it is a chew toy or tennis ball, may provide a thoroughly stimulating challenge for your pet. Hank, a 7-year-old Labrador, entered his first dock diving competition last year. Hank's owner, Stacey Purvis-Bennett, claimed he paced quite a bit before making his first leap. "He loved it once he got it," she recalled. "Dogs do it because they want to do it." The length of the jump determines a dog's ranking, or division. Distance standards vary slightly depending on the organization. DockDogs, for example, boasts six ranks ranging from Novice (up to a 9'11" jump) to Super Elite (over 25-foot jump). Measurements are 22

Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog

by Kristina Kelly calculated from the point where the tail meets the body as they enter the water. Some owners try to increase distance by training their dog to chase the toy as they bolt down the dock, or toss the toy in the water and show the dog where the prize is waiting before the jump. Like any sport, there may be risk of injury, so owners need to monitor their pet's health. These jumping athletes are not immune to muscle strains or paw tears. Pads of waterlogged dogs may become soft and split with excessive use on rough surfaces. All pooches are welcome to make a splash this summer, although common breeds of the sport are Labrador, Chesapeake Bay Retriever, and Belgian Malinois, according to Carolina DockDogs. Not surprisingly, a Labrador would get more pop than a Basset Hound. Before you commit to dock diving, you should know that the time commitment is up to the individual, but scheduled practice is approximately once per month, and events typically last 2–3 days. This sport is something you do because your dog loves to jump, not because it is cheap; traveling around the country to dock diving events can be very costly and time consuming. To learn more, visit www.carolinadockdogs.com. There are many dock diving organizations around the country you can turn to for more information, but Carolina DockDogs is one of the local companies.


Photo by Diane Lewis

room. I could hear them trotting down the hall and then the swinging doors would burst open and out would bound Dylan, smiling with tail wagging as if he had been for a day at the beach. This was a true testament for the care and compassion given Dylan by the veterinarians and technicians. Fighting cancer is difficult in the best of times, but when you know the cancer cannot be cured but only managed, it takes special people to fight the battle with you. Thanks to the wonderful doctors at the vet school, especially Dr. Jason Kidd, Dr. Jennifer Hofer, Dr. Michelle Morges, Dr. Jennifer Wilcox, and Dr. Amy Davenport, we had 8 more trips to the beach, 245 more days together, and 5,880 more hours to spend with each other than would have been possible without them. Dylan was my heart and soul and there are no words that could ever thank these veterinarians for all they did for him. Dylan never gave up, and neither did his doctors. We had many discussions about Dylan's energy, his spirit, his wonderful attitude through eight months of pretty tough chemo. Many of the doctors expressed their amazement at his strength. We all agreed that we would keep going, whether with traditional chemo or something new for Dylan. In the end, it was Dylan's bone marrow that could not keep up with the chemo.

Dylan taught me many things. Most importantly, live in the moment, have fun every day, be joyful and let your people know you love them. Thomas Wolfe wrote "Love is stronger than death." Dylan taught me that, too. I know his spirit lives on and I hope his story will inspire others to never give up and always keep hoping and searching for a cure. I too can attest to their great knowledge and care. In March 2011, our dog Morrie was referred to VTH and spent a week there for neck surgery after they found two compressed discs. Then two weeks later another one of our dogs, Elsie, had to spend a week at there as an emergency referral to internal medicine for immune-mediated hemolytic anemia (IMHA). Both of my stories ended happily and I know that is in part because of the strength and courage of the animals, but also because of the expertise at VTH. Having such great medical care for our four-legged friends right down the road is a luxury that I think most of us overlook. If you ever end up in a situation where you want to do more for an ailing pet, I hope it will comfort you to know that the Randall B. Terry, Jr. Companion Animal Veterinary Medical Center is just down the road and ready to use all their cutting edge technologies to do all they can for your loved one. The Triangle Dog

Volume 1 • Issue 2


The t-Dog 'round town 3rd Annual Golden Swim and Picnic

AniMall Doggie Easter Egg Hunt 2011

Carolina Care Bullies Presents Pit Bulls in the Park

SPCA K9-3K Dog Walk

If you have an event that you would like the T-Dog to attend, please send your information to info@thetriangledog.com. 26    Volume 1 • Issue 2

T The Triangle Dog

triangle happenings JULY CARE Yappy Hour July 18, 2011, 5:30 - 7:30 pm Yappy Hour is a time for owners, their children and their furry kids to mix and mingle (and sniff) new people and their dogs. Enjoy a fun raising event at Carolina Brewery & Grill in Pittsboro and help support CARE's mission to promote the health and safety of all dogs and cats in Chatham County. www.chathamanimalrescue.org 2011 Cool Down July 22-24, 2011 Join Carolina DockDogs at the Ole Mill where the dogs will be having a blast jumping into the pond. Competition will run Saturday and Sunday. www.carolinadockdogs.com 9th Annual Painted Chair and more Auction July 30, 2011 Enjoy music, cocktails, and a live auction. The auction includes works from local artists. All proceeds benefit Independent Animal Rescue. Tickets are $10 before the event or $15 at the door. Motorco Music Hall, 723 Rigsbee Ave, Durham, NC. www.animalrescue.net The 11th Annual NRGRR Rescue Reunion Saturday, July 30, 2011, 11:00 am - 2:00 pm Join NRGRR as they celebrate the many successes of the past year. Bring your NRGRR alum, and his friends and family, to Montague's Pond for a fun filled day! They take this time to recognize and thank the many volunteers, friends and supporters for the tremendous amount of work they do to rescue, rehabilitate, and adopt out hundreds of orphaned Goldens every year. Montague's Pond, Cary, NC

we will do our best to place you on a team. Registrations are requested by August 6, 2011. Last year the tournament filled to capacity, so register early! www.goldenonthegreen.com Fun on the Patio August 20, 2011 Hosted by 2Paws Up to help raise money for the animals in need. Come on out with your favorite canine companion and enjoy food, drinks and friends on the patio. Crabtree Tavern will be donating 10% of all proceeds to 2Paws Up. Crabtree Tavern, 5300 Homewood Banks Dr, Raleigh, NC. www.2pawsup.org Carolina Care Bullies 2nd Anniversary Bully Ball August 20, 2011, 7:30 pm-10:30 pm Carolina Care Bullies 2nd Anniversary Bully Ball. Tickets are $20 in advance/$25 at the door; Cocktail Attire required; DJ music from iDJNC; food and silent auction. Creekside Hills Clubhouse, 1000 Creekside Hills Drive in Apex, NC. (see ad on page 45) www.carebullies.org

SEPTEMBER DockDogs "Under the Lights" September 13-18, 2011 Join Carolina DockDogs at the Lee Regional Fair. Competition will run Saturday and Sunday. www.carolinadockdogs.com 10th Annual Woof-a-Palooza September 17, 2011


You and your pet will have a howling good time as you enjoy the activities, contests, demonstrations, and refreshments. Check out the CARE website for further details:



Annual Auction for the Animals August 6, 2011 11th Annual Auction for the Animals "Christmas in August" www.secondchancenc.org Dining out for the Dogs at California Pizza Kitchen August 19, 2011 Join NRGRR for an event where giving won't just feel good, but it'll taste good too. NRGRR is having a fundraiser at California Pizza Kitchen. Bring in the flier from their website, present it to your server when ordering, and 20% of your check will be donated to NRGRR. Participating locations are Southpoint Mall and Triangle Town Center. www.goldenrescuenc.org Golden on the Green Charity Golf Tournament August 20, 2011 Please join Neuse River Golden Retriever Rescue for the 10th Annual Golden on the Green Charity Golf Tournament. You will have a great day of golf at the beautiful River Ridge Golf Club in Raleigh, NC. It is Captain's Choice with a shotgun start at 1:30 pm. Individual registration is $90 (plus $3 online processing fee) and team sponsor levels are available. Lunch, dinner, cart and range balls are included. Two beverage carts will be on the course supplying you with refreshments for donations throughout the tournament. You can register as a team or as an individual. As an individual,

DogGoneFast Flyball Tournament September 17-18, 2011 Join DogGoneFast Flyball Club for their fall tournament where dogs and people alike go wild over this relay race. Saturday 9:00 am – 5:00 pm and Sunday 9:00 am – 3:00 pm. Free admission. Holshouser Building at NC State Fairgrounds. www.flyballdogs.com/dgf

OCTOBER SPCA Fur Ball October 2, 2011 The most important night of the year for homeless pets in Wake County. (see ad on page 18) www.spcawake.org

Do you have an event you would like to us to promote?

Please email us at: events@thetriangledog.com The Triangle Dog

T Volume 1 • Issue 2      27


Dog Days of Summer

Recognizing and Preventing Overheating

The dog days of summer are right around the corner, and our hot summer weather brings about a host of potential health concerns for our four-legged family members. At the top of the list is heat stroke; our canine and feline housemates cannot perspire like we do. This anatomical difference limits their ability to rid their body of excess heat. As you read the precautions below, remember, your animals are dependent on your common sense and awareness of potential health risks that lurk throughout all of our daily lives. Never leave your pet in the car. Though it may seem cool outside, the sun can raise the temperature inside your car to 120 degrees Fahrenheit in a matter of minutes, even with the windows rolled down. If you need to run some errands, leave your furry friends at home. Leash Laws. When you’re outside enjoying the wonderfully warm weather, keep your pet on a leash. It will keep her from getting lost, fighting other animals, and eating and drinking things that could make her sick. Water, water, everywhere. Whether you're indoors or out, both you and your pet need access to a lot of fresh water during the summer, so be sure to check her water bowl several times a day to be sure it's full. If you and your furry friend venture out for the afternoon, remember to bring plenty of water for both of you. 28

Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog

by Lisa Farling, DVM

Pets need sunscreen too. Though all that fur helps protect her, your pet can get sunburned, particularly if she has light skin and hair. Sunburn on animals can cause problems similar to those it can cause people, including pain, irritating peeling, and skin cancer. So keep your pet out of the sun between 10 am and 4 pm, and when you do go out, rub a bit of sunscreen on unprotected areas like the tips of her ears, the skin around her lips, and the tip of her nose. Say no to tangles. Keeping your pet well groomed will help her hair do what it was designed to do— protect her from the sun and insulate her from the heat. If she has extremely thick hair or a lot of mats and tangles, her fur may trap too much heat, so you may want to trim her up some. Be cautious on humid days. Humidity interferes with animals' ability to rid themselves of excess body heat. We sweat when we overheat, and when the sweat dries it takes excess heat with it. Our four-legged friends only perspire around their paws, which is not enough to cool the body. To rid themselves of excess heat, animals pant. Air moves through the nasal passages, which picks up excess heat from the body. As it is expelled through the mouth, the extra heat leaves along with it. Although this is a very efficient way to control body heat, it is severely limited in areas of high humidity or when the animal is in close quarters.


by Dave Thomas the Wake Forest Police Department to outfit their squad cars with heat-sensing mechanisms that monitor the temperature inside the car. In the event the temperature rises above a certain set degree, the back windows automatically come down, the lights turn on, and the horn blares to alert the handler. Police departments take these measures to protect their dogs, not just because not doing so would be inhumane, but it seems mostly to protect their investment. A police dog is a substantial investment of time and money. They can either be purchased pre-trained, usually from a European country such as Holland or the Czech Republic, or they are "green dogs," as Sgt. Puckett put it, where the majority of the training is done by the purchasing department where the dog and handler are trained together.

"A lot of people have the misconception that a dog is used just because of their teeth. Obviously, that is not true. We use the dogs mainly because of their sense of smell," said Sergeant Anthony Puckett, head of the Wake Forest Police Department's K9 unit. Wake Forest's K9 unit consists of five dogs (two Belgian Malinios, three German Shepherds) and four handlers. The dogs work 12 hour shifts on a rotating schedule with their handlers, and spend the majority of their time in the back of a squad car out on patrol. "They stay in the car when they're with us. Of course, we have to get them out every two or three hours to give them a break, let them use the bathroom, and let them run around," Sgt. Puckett said. The Wake Forest Police Department K9s are dual purpose dogs. They are highly trained in narcotics searches and tracking, but they also conduct building searches and limited evidence recovery. However, in extreme circumstances, they are also trained to apprehend a subject and protect the handler. But those situations are extremely rare; in the 13 years that he has been a K9 handler, Sgt. Puckett said he has only had three apprehensions, when a dog bites and holds a suspect. And one of those times, the suspect kicked the dog in a reckless attempt to evade apprehension. Police dogs encounter the same potential dangers their handlers do, including being shot. In 2006, a police dog was shot and killed in the line of duty in Rocky Mount. In March of 2011, Maverick, one of Wake Forest's police dogs, was struck by a patrol car and gravely injured while in pursuit of a suspect. Excessive heat exposure is also a potential hazard. According to Sgt. Puckett, five police dogs died in the last year nationwide, prompting 30

Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog

"We try to perform 30 minutes to an hour of training with them each day, just to keep them sharp and up to standards," said Sgt. Puckett. Each dog has to pass a yearly certification for each training aspect with the North Carolina Police Dog Association to remain an active member of the police department. It is no coincidence that Belgian Malinois or German Shepherds are exclusively used by law enforcement. Their higher prey drive and higher defensive instincts make them the ideal breeds for law enforcement purposes. And while Sgt. Puckett was careful to point out that they are not attack dogs, he said nothing to soften the power of intimidation that comes with looking like a menacing, snarling, aggressive dog that is itching for its next opportunity to sink its teeth into a fleeing perpetrator. At the end of their shift, the police dog goes home with its handler and is put in a kennel. This is necessary to prevent domestication and keep the dog focused on its duties and not the attention or affection it receives. This is not to say they are not loved or do not receive affection, but they are not pets, they are not members of the family. "I've got a little one, and she goes out there and she helps me feed him sometimes, and she'll rub him. And he's tolerant of that; he's not aggressive in any way. But he's not a loving animal. He's not going to come up to you so you can rub him. When he gets out of the kennel, he knows it's time to work," Sgt. Puckett admitted. Ultimately, police dogs are tools, crime fighting implements, like having another firearm. It sounds cruel to simplify their existence to such a short description, such a common, dehumanized label as "tool," but it's the truth. Their purpose is to serve and protect, to aid their human counterparts with their unique abilities and instincts. They are not pets; they are brave, dedicated, loyal, and valued members of law enforcement.


by Lisa Giannini, CVPM

Registered Veterinary Technician (Nurse) Veterinary medicine has become more advanced and complex as technology continues to make advances in pet care. Pet owners expect state of the art veterinary care for their four-legged family members. In an effort to provide high quality medicine and service, the veterinary team utilizes the skills of trained professionals known as veterinary technicians. If you care about animals, have strong math and decision-making skills, and enjoy working with people, this challenging and rewarding career opportunity may be just right for you. Let's take a look at a career as a veterinary technician!

GETTING TO KNOW THE REGISTERED VETERINARY TECHNICIAN Veterinary technicians are to veterinarians what nurses are to doctors. I typically refer to veterinary technicians as veterinary nurses. DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES Under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian, veterinary technicians are trained to: • Obtain and record medical history • Collect specimens and perform/review laboratory tests • Specialize in nursing care • Prepare animals, surgical instruments, and equipment for surgery • Assist in surgery and medical procedures • Advise and educate pet owners • Take X-rays • Perform dental prophylaxis • Maintain anesthesia during procedure • Assist in research projects Job opportunities are expected to be excellent for veterinary technicians over the next decade. The 3,800 students that graduate each year from associate programs are not enough to fill all of the available jobs, and the occupation, unfortunately, has a relatively high turnover. EDUCATION Candidates must have an aptitude for general science, math, biology, and demonstrate basic language and communication skills. Several AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association) accredited veterinary technology programs are available throughout the United States and are typically a two-year program/ associate degree. North Carolina Programs: Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College 340 Victoria RoadAsheville, NC 28801 (828)-254-1921 www.abtech.edu Director: Diane Cotter, RVT 34

Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog

Central Carolina Community College 1105 Kelly Drive Sanford, NC 27330 (919)-775-5401 www.cccc.edu Director: Dr. Paul Porterfield, DVM Gaston College 201 Highway 321 South Dallas, NC 28034 (704)-922-6200 www.gaston.edu Director: Dr. Kristine Blankenship, DVM For more information on distance learning programs in veterinary technology accredited by the AVMA Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities (CVTEA), visit www.avma.org/education/ cvea/vettech_distance_learning.asp SALARY The median wage for 79,200 veterinary technicians and technologists was $29,280, or $14.08 an hour, in May 2009, and half of them earned between $23,990 and $35,880, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. About 88 percent worked in animal hospitals and clinics; while those who worked for colleges and professional schools received an average wage of $35,980. CERTIFICATIONS AND PROFESSIONAL REGULATIONS All states require registered veterinary technicians to pass a licensing or certification examination after their education has been completed. Those who take the exam must show they are competent to work in a veterinary hospital or clinic. The National Veterinary Technician exam is used by most states. Continuing education is required to maintain license/ certification. For example, North Carolina requires 12 continuing education units every 2 years. FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION CONTACT: North Carolina Association of Veterinary Technicians: www.ncavt.com National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America: www.navta.net

Cool Treats For Hot Dogs


by Allison Snyder

DOG STARS • 4 tbsp vanilla yogurt (any good-quality organic brand) • 1 tsp honey • 3 tbsp smooth peanut butter • ¼ cup grated sweet potato or carrot Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix thoroughly. Distribute mixture evenly in a cupcake pan with six cups. Your dog stars will be fairly thin, sort of like a peppermint patty. Place in freezer till firm. Recipe makes 6 servings, 12 if you cut them in half, which I recommend for smaller dogs. Be sure to serve them on a surface that you don’t mind getting a little sloppy— avoid the living room rug.

"Dog days—the hot, uncomfortable days in July and August: so called because during that period the Dog Star rises and sets with the sun."—Webster's New World Dictionary Though Webster's definition holds a certain cosmic appeal, "dog days" elicits a more down-to-earth visual for most of us. Think long, hot, panting days for our decidedly terrestrial dogs who, unlike their human caretakers, cannot exchange their full-length fur coats for more seasonal attire. But if your dog can't wear the solution to his summer heat problem, he can eat it, which will probably suit him just fine, anyway. Named after the celestial body of Webster's definition, dog stars are the equivalent of a popsicle for your pooch—tasty, easy to make, and guaranteed to bring blessed relief to your canine companion. And because they make a great recipe for beginning cooks, dog stars are an ideal summer project for your kids to help out with. They can even make them on their own, depending on their kitchen skill level. My 11-year-old daughter and I put the following recipe together from what our vet approved and what we had on hand at the house (read: much cheaper than what we would have picked up at the pet store). As with any pet recipe, check with your vet first to make sure your dog doesn't have any dietary issues with these ingredients. And before we go any further, I should tell you they taste pretty good. This is probably one of the few things that you and your dog can eat together—with enjoyment

and without guilt. So tell your toddler he can stop eating dog food and start eating dog stars. Because most of us in the western world are fed to the point of boredom, making people food has become fraught with things to get us whipped up about eating it—things like nuance, contrast, nostalgia, texture, and visual appeal. And we can't forget taste—good, sublime, horrible, hated it, loved it, it was "OK." Yes, we expect a lot out of our food. Making food for dogs? Well, for starters, if dogs were in charge of food media, they would never have a show on Food Network called, "The Best Thing I Ever Ate," because such a concept suggests that there is a scale of food quality and that one thing is more desirable to eat than another. For a dog, everything's a 10. A dog is a first-class, five-star audience for any cook. Not only do they love everything, but they have a high and happy tolerance for repetition. Think of their daily dog food. What for you and me would be the equivalent of getting a peanut butter and jelly sandwich twice a day, 365 days a year, is a joy to a dog. So it's a pretty safe bet that they will love you for presenting them with a summertime treat that is not only a little off the beaten path taste-wise, but will cool them off as well. And there's something really refreshing about that, as refreshing as, well, a dog star. So whip some up. The dogs and kids in your life will love you for it. And what the heck, invite the neighbors, too. The Triangle Dog

Volume 1 • Issue 2



NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) weather radio to have on hand in the event of dangerous weather. Perhaps the most important thing you can do is to have a plan for yourself and your pets. Know which evacuation routes to use and where you and your pet will stay during evacuation. You may want to check with out-of-town family to see if they will keep your pet during evacuation, or do some research to find hotels—outside of the disaster zone—that allow pets. A good source for this research is petswelcome.com. Wherever you happen to evacuate, you should never do so without your pet. If for some reason you are not able to evacuate and become stranded, take comfort in knowing that search and rescue authorities will rescue your pets when they rescue you. In North Carolina, each county has the responsibility of setting up one co-located animal shelter for evacuated pets. These co-located shelters would be on the same property as the emergency shelter for humans, and the

location of this animal shelter should be provided with the emergency shelter information. These co-located shelters are the product of North Carolina's Department of Agriculture, which aimed to improve emergency preparedness for pet owners after so many pets and their companions were separated during Hurricane Floyd. The Agriculture Department operates CAMET (Companion Animal Mobile Emergency Trailer), a trailer that transports everything necessary to setup the co-located animal shelters. The shelters are staffed by veterinarians, vet techs, and volunteers who undergo training and periodic drills. Because they are organized by the individual counties, the makeup of these animal shelters will vary, but it is recommended that you bring your dog's carrier or crate if you intend to have your dog stay at a co-located shelter. Our pets look to us for the necessities that they cannot provide for themselves, such as food, water, shelter, nurturing, and love. Making simple preparations to provide for their safety in the event of an emergency is also one of those necessities and should not be overlooked.

The Triangle Dog

Volume 1 • Issue 2



by Donna S. Elliott

Photos by Leah Charbonneau Photography

Dogs make us happy. Dogs make us feel better. It doesn't matter whether you're a four-year-old sent to timeout or an elderly individual living alone; the presence provided by a dog's company is heartwarming and soul mending. The bond, however brief, can bridge the distance we feel between others and even between parts of ourselves. Dogs have become an important part of patient care by helping hospital patients embrace their recovery with increased enthusiasm, comforting nursing home residents and hospice patients so they can rise above the fear and loneliness that comes with facing the end of life, and inspiring young victims of sexual abuse to more comfortably and confidently testify against those who assaulted them. Studies show that merely petting a dog can lower cortisol levels and raise levels of beneficial hormones such as oxytocin, prolactin, and phenylethylamine in the body, creating feelings of calm and contentment. Animal-assisted therapy is shown to be beneficial for reducing stress, improving mood and energy level, decreasing perceived pain, and lowering anxiety, and has been observed to even lower blood pressure. It has been cited as a highly effective form of psychotherapy intervention that not only reduces stress and depression, but also provides a sense of companionship that can combat feelings of isolation. As part of its Oncology Recreation Therapy (ORT) program, Duke Cancer Institute offers "Pets at Duke." 42

Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog

Kristy Everette, LRT, CTRS, oversees the ORT program. Kristy is a national Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist. She explained that Duke has provided animal-assisted therapy since 1994, but when she came on board several years ago, her goal was to expand the program. Kristy is a cancer survivor herself and remembers the day she received the news about her diagnosis. She described how on that day she went home and sat on the couch. Her dog, Miller, came over to her with her nightgown in its mouth and laid it over her knee. She said right then and there, she knew she needed to be involved in a pet therapy program. "When I reflect back on that day, that is what I remember, not what it was like to hear that diagnosis," she said. In the last two years, Kristy has been able to expand Duke's pet therapy program so that dogs visit patients in adult oncology two days a week, pediatric oncology patients two days a week, and radiation oncology patients two days a week. The program goes off-site into the community as well; dogs visit two days a week at the Caring House, a temporary residence facility for adult patients and their families. Therapy dogs also visit the Hock Family Pavilion hospice facility one day a week. Kristy explained that the goal is a five to seven minute visit, and even a visit that brief can manifest

Animal-Assisted Therapy Helps Patients Cope with Stress and Illness

a physiological impact that lasts up to six hours. She added that the patients are completely grateful and often say it's the best thing to happen to them all week. "It immediately takes the focus off their diagnosis," Kristy said. "Their attention is directed to the dog." Pain improvement is measurable when dogs visit. Kristy said that there can be a reduction of three to five points on the pain scale. Kristy does a lot of public speaking to increase the awareness of the benefits of animal—assisted therapy. She shares information and often serves as a consultant to other facilities hoping to start their own programs. She wants people to understand that animal-assisted therapy can be done in a hospital environment that is safe to the patients. According to Kristy, the toughest part for any organization or hospital trying to bring in an animal-assisted therapy program is being able to allot the time it takes to coordinate the program. A facilitator must prepare for the therapy dog visit by going room-to-room to ask which patients would like a visit. Additionally, that facilitator must pre-screen the patient to determine if he or she is medically able to accept a visit from a therapy dog. The facilitator must accompany the handler and therapy dog on each visit. Currently at Duke, all the facilitators are volunteers but had previously been staff members. She said many hospitals don't have the staff hours to have someone available during pet therapy sessions.

Therapy dogs must have passed a Canine Good Citizenship course and be certified through either Delta Society or Therapy Dogs Inc. Additionally, therapy dogs and their handlers must go through a Dukesponsored orientation program that slowly integrates them into the hospital setting, which gets them used to the sights and smells of the environment. The Pets at Duke program currently has 10 handlers and pet therapy dogs, with a list of candidates waiting to join the volunteer program. It's an entirely volunteer-based program, and any funds used to support the program come through donations. The Delta Society is a national training program for volunteers and their dogs that, according to its website, is dedicated to "improving human health through service and therapy animals." Instead of referring to the program as "pet therapy," the Delta Society prefers the term "animal-assisted therapy." According the Delta Society, therapy dogs can be found at "virtually every kind of healthcare facility-acute care hospitals, rehabilitation hospitals, nursing homes, group homes, schools, day care, etc." Introducing animals into a patient’s environment is a way of humanizing healthcare. As healthcare and society in general become more high tech and potentially more isolating, the greater the need may become for the simple healing power of touch and the furry support of a creature to love. Love really is the best medicine. The Triangle Dog

Volume 1 • Issue 2



DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH by Rebecca Brodney

she did not receive very much attention in her previous living situation. She assimilated into Ramirez's routine nicely; she grew calmer, came when she was called, and even learned her doggie manners (like not jumping on people). She did have one challenge living with Ramirez— she had to confront her nemesis, the crate. Luckily, this fear was overcome as soon as Diamond realized that she would only have to be in her crate for sleep and other restful times.

Once upon a time, there was a beautiful American Pit Bull Terrier named Diamond. She belonged to a man who loved her more than anything in the world. One day, the man left for Iraq to serve our country and he never came home. Diamond was left in the care of the fallen soldier's girlfriend. She would not allow the dog into her house, so Diamond was confined to a crate and only let out for meals, bathroom breaks, and occasionally for playtime. When her new caregiver realized that this was not a good life for an animal, Diamond was reluctantly surrendered to the Wake County Animal Center. Alli Ramirez is an animal rescue worker at Marley's Cat Tales and Dogs Too, a local, non-profit organization devoted to finding homes for dogs and cats who, like Diamond, have had a rough start in life. Ramirez found Diamond at the Wake County Animal Center about a week after she had been brought in. Ramirez hastily filed paper work to obtain authorization to take Diamond into her home as a foster dog. Diamond was thrilled to be entering her foster home, and was playful upon her arrival. It was evident that 44

Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog

Diamond only lived with Ramirez for a week before she went to live in her foster to adopt home with Matt Varghese. Many people had applied to take Diamond into their home, but Varghese was deemed a perfect fit because his lifestyle and temperament meshed so well with that of his new companion. The adoption became official on March 18, 2011. Varghese chose to adopt Diamond because she was, according to him, "a sweet, very personable, and relaxed dog." When he first adopted her, she was anxious to be in a new place with a new owner. In the first several days she required a lot of attention and would never leave Varghese's side, even on trips to the local dog park. Since she's found her forever home with Varghese, Diamond has grown tremendously. They go on walks and runs together, as well as visit a dog park to be sure that she stays well-socialized. During their downtime, they enjoy snuggling up on the couch watching television or movies together. Someday, Varghese would like to take her on adventures to the mountains, the beach, or even out West. While Diamond has certainly had a rough start to her life, she has undoubtedly found her happy ending, thanks to kind, generous animal lovers like Alli Ramirez and Matt Varghese.

MADELINE BREHMER November 5, 2000 (adopted at about 1 year old) April 13, 2011

Madeline (Maddie) came into our life in a very traditional way. We were recently married and thought we should start our life together with a young dog. We discussed what kind of dog would match our family well and we finally settled on a Beagle. We started searching rescues and eventually found Maddie, our Princess. Her first few years were a learning experience for all of us. We had to teach her that steak was for humans, and dogs were not allowed to walk on the table to steal it. We had to teach her that it was not okay to whine throughout the entire night (solved by her sleeping on the bed). And we had to teach her that no matter how often we packed boxes, she was always going to be coming with us. After 10 years with Maddie, there was nothing left to teach her. She knew our voices, she knew our words, 46

Volume 1 • Issue 2

The Triangle Dog

and she knew our hearts. She was the dog that was there whenever you needed one and she was the dog who could do no wrong. In October 2009, Maddie was diagnosed with cancer, an oral fibrosarcoma. At the time we were given 3–6 months without conventional treatment, which would have been jaw removal. Considering her age and quality of life, we decided against the surgery and opted for alternative methods such as acupuncture, herbal supplements, and a natural diet. I can't say that the last 18 months have been without complications and tears, but I can say that we were lucky to have Maddie in our life for an entire year longer than her original prognosis, and for that we are eternally grateful. Though in the end she was one of many Beagles in our home, she always was and always will be, our Princess.

SASSIE BREHMER December 27, 1994 – April 27, 2011 Photo by Diane Lewis

Sassie (previously Sassy) came into our home in a somewhat non-traditional way. After her previous owner, Sydney Armstrong, passed away at the end of 2008, both Sassie and her housemate Miss Millie needed a home. After seeing Sassie's story on The Triangle Beagle Rescue's adoption page, her story really spoke to us, and we wanted to help. We had no idea what a special dog Sassie really was and how much she would teach us.

Ultimately, Sassie is the reason we started The Triangle Dog. She brought us many new experiences and lessons, and we wanted to help others learn about different ways to create better lives for their dogs, just as we wanted to for ours.

Sassie was 14 years old with a high-grade heart condition when we adopted her. Despite her heart condition, she was still practicing and competing in agility, in fact, she was kind of a famous agility dog (Run Beagle Run!). With Sassie came the opportunity to learn about agility, a new aspect of the dog world, as well as the opportunity to meet so many great people at agility events.

Though we only had Sassie for just over two years, she opened our world to many things we were not familiar with and introduced us to so many people that we are so grateful to have met. Because she was such a special dog and brought so much into our lives, we want to honor her by spreading the word about canine cancer, so hopefully, someday, cancer will be something of the past for all canines.

Sadly, Sassie was diagnosed with lymphoma near her liver in April 2011, and because of her serious heart condition and the location of the cancer, there was little that could be done for her to even keep her comfortable.

The Triangle Dog

Volume 1 • Issue 2