Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Love to Be Charitable

Cause-related marketing refers to a type of marketing for profit and non-profit businesses working together for a mutual benefit. The creation of the term has been attributed to American Express in order to describe their efforts to support locally-based charitable causes that promote businesses and their good works.In this doggie dog world, I am very impressed with the charitable, cause campaigns of Toru Dog. The company sells dog hoodies, tees and tanks, as well as some products for people, too.

In July 2008, Toru produced a hip, rock 'n roll clothing line for dogs to raise awareness and funds for The Good Dog Foundation, located in Brooklyn, NY. Fifteen percent of the proceeds of The Good Dog charity line are donated to The Good Dog Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to all forms of animal-assisted therapy. To learn more about or to make a donation to The Good Dog Foundation, visit

This year, Toru owners, Susan and Vanessa, have created Rescue Wear to promote awareness for rescue groups, as well as adoption and spay/neuter programs nationwide. Fifteen percent of the proceeds from this line are donated to Miami-based Paws 4 You Rescue, whose top priority is to save animals from euthanasia at Miami Dade Animal Services. To learn more or make a donation to this 501(c)(3) organization, visit luck, girls, and keep up the good work! If you want to learn more about Toru and its good works, visit the girls at the HH Backer Christmas Trade Show in Booth #4644 on Friday, Saturday or Sunday.

Is Your Dog the Cutest?

Could your pooch be the next winner of the Cutest Dog Competition, an online photo contest based on voting? The top prize in the contest, sponsored by All American Pet Brands, a dog food maker, is $1 million.

Between August 1st and October 24th, pet owners can enter the All American Pet Company, Inc.™ CUTESTDOGCOMPETITION.COM Contest. According to the rules, there is no purchase necessary to enter or win. Contest is open only to legal residents of the fifty (50) United States and the District of Columbia who own* a dog and have online photo-uploading capabilities. To enter: Visit and follow all Contest entry instructions, including completing the online entry form in its entirety. See below for photograph specifications. For judging purposes, your Entry will be included in the Entry period it is received (see below).

Good Luck.

Gang of Cats Take to the Streets

Sometimes, it is hard to be a good neighbor. But Helen and Richard Scott live on Jenkins Lane in Union Township, Clermont County, outside of Cincinnati, Ohio are more than good neighbors; they are animal lovers. When an elderly neighbor went to the nursing home, she left her cats behind and that's where the problem starts. At one point, she tried to get them all spayed and neutered but it just got out of hand.

Now, Scott and Richard live next door to at least 25+ cats who call the old woman's trailer home. According to Richard, a new litter is born almost every other week. When the Scott's spoke to elderly woman's son who he lives in Ashville, North Carolina about the situation, he said "Let the cats starve." The Scotts say they won't let that happen. They feed the cats twice a day and pay for the food on their own. Mrs. Scott notes, "There ain’t no way we can take care of all of them or have them fixed,” but "So, if someone would help us or come and get rid of them or pick them up if they really want a cat." They'd like to find a good home for all of the cats or at least find a way to get them spayed and neutered to make the cats more adoptable.

The Scotts contacted the Clermont County Health Department, the Clermont County Humane Society and the Clermont County Sheriff's Department, but didn't get any help. But once news 9News got involved airing a story, an unanimous donor offered help to the Clermont County Humane Society with this colony of cats that have overrun Jenkins Lane. Now, maybe these good neighbors and cat lovers will finally have some help.

I rather have a pet than an apple

Today, pets are in more than 60 percent of American homes. More people are incorporating pets into their leisure time, such as making them part of their exercise routines, taking them to dog parks and bringing them to family events. As a result, research involving human-animal interaction can be extremely beneficial.

This fall, the University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine Research Center for Human-Animal Interaction (ReCHAI) will explore the many ways animals benefit people of all ages during the International Society for Anthrozoology and Human-Animal Interaction Conference in Kansas City, Mo., on Oct. 20-25.

The conference will provide a unique opportunity for international experts working in human-animal interaction research to connect with those already working in the health and veterinary medicine fields. A wonderful array of presentations will show how beneficial animals can be in the lives of children, families and older adults.

Earlier this year, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), one of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), co-hosted two workshops with The WALTHAM® Centre for Pet Nutrition, a division of Mars Incorporated, bringing together leading experts to discuss the benefits of human-animal interaction in childhood. With support from a grant from NICHD and sponsorship from WALTHAM®, the conference will continue this discussion.

Other conference discussions will include ways that human-animal interaction benefits humans and animals, new facets of human-animal interaction, and ways to apply new human-animal interaction knowledge to their fields. Some of the presentations will highlight the special role of companion animals in facilitating reading and physical activity in children and adults.

The few studies that have been conducted suggest that pet ownership may have multiple health and emotional benefits for both children and adults. Studies have shown that pets help lower blood pressure, encourages exercise, improve psychological health. But, there has been relatively little rigorous research documenting these benefits and examining how and why they occur. By providing support for this conference and additional research studies, experts hope to generate some answers.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Help Cats In Mass

Local cat volunteers removed approximately 50 cats and kittens from a foreclosed home on Guisti Drivein Attleboro, Mass on Saturday. This is the region's latest case of apparent animal hoarding. The nonprofit Friends of the Attleboro Animal Shelter is actively seeking homes and monetary donations and gifts of pet supplies for about 34 felines, most of which appear to be under age of four.

The cats, in better shape than you would expect to find in a hoarding situation of this magnitude. It has been reported that the homeowner reportedly lost his job and had his wife die over the past two years. The Cape Cod-style home has been foreclosed and has since been sold. Online city assessors records list the most recent owners as Steven and Robin Burns. The homeowner was present when the cats were removed Saturday.

By Monday morning, the group had arranged to place 14 of the nearly 50 cats: five each at Angelcat Haven in Plainville and Providence Animal Rescue, and four others at the Attleboro Friends of Cats shelter, Knight said.Volunteer Nancy Robinson said six outdoor cats will be spayed and neutered and then held in cages at the city animal shelter.

The cost of getting all these cats vetted is astronomical; None of them are spayed or neutered or have ever received shots. Monetary donations to help volunteers care for the cats can be mailed to: FAAS, P.O. Box 592, Attleboro, MA 02703. If you would like to donate cat food, litter, blankets, crates and gloves bring them down to the Attleboro Animal Shelter on Pond Street near the Seekonk line.

To adopt or foster one of the cats contact: Friends of Attleboro Animal Shelter at 508-944-3316 or e-mail

Teen Tapes and Bounds Cat

In Philadelphia, a cruel teenager wrapped a cat in duct tape, put her in a shopping bag and left her in a neighbor's backyard.

The Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals said James Davis, 19, was arrested Saturday on animal-cruelty charges. Official George Bengal said Davis admitted to taping up the cat from neck to tail after he spotted her in his yard Sept. 21st. Davis left the cat in his yard for a couple of hours, then, because the animal kept screaming, tossed her into a neighbor's yard, where at least 12 hours passed before she was noticed and authorities were contacted, Bengal said.

The cat which was later referred to as Sticky was dehydrated and had to be sedated while the tape was cut off her fur. Animal-welfare workers continue to look for her owner. Release reports state the cat is doing well.

The teen faces up to two years in prison and a minimum $1,000 fine if convicted.

Kids Interacting with Dogs Safely

The American Humane Association is launching KIDS: Kids Interacting with Dogs Safely, a dog bite prevention program targeted to children younger than 7 years of age. The program teaches children to be considerate of dogs' feelings in order to prevent dog bites.

In my book, The Miss Fido Manners (Adams Media) I provide a guide to canine-child interaction. Parents can help by their children by teaching them to respect dog's boundaries and some basic rules.

1. Children need to understand that dogs do not always make good friends.
2. Teach children how important it is to be polite for safety's skae with dog owners and pets. Instruct them to always ask if a dog is firendly and then, if the owners give permission they can pet it.
3. Kids need to learn now to interact positively with dogs. "Show and tell" them how to greet dogs. Tell youngster to be calm around dogs, lower their voice and hold a steady hand so that the dog can sniff it. Show the child first and have her mimic your actions.
4. Tell kids they need to understand the secret language of dogs by reading their body language. Explain when you are happy, you smile. When you are sad, you cry. Without words, your body reacts and shows how you feel. This is true with dogs. A dog's body can demonstrate how he feels.
5. Explain that children should neither dry to comfort the fearful dog or challenge an angry one. Tell them to remain silent, look away from the animal and leave by walking away from the dog slowly.
6. Discuss how dogs don't like surprise. It is better not to disturb a dog that is sleeping, eating or playing with her toys.
7. Ask children from running, screaming or playing on the ground in the presence of a dog
8. More so with boys than girls, tell them not to tease, throw things, play rought or wrestly with a dog.
9. Boys and girls should never sneak food to a dog.
10. Adult supervision is the key.

For for more information about dog training with kids, check out Carol Lea Benjamin's Dog Training for Kids ( Howell Books).


Monday, September 28, 2009

Dog Spelled Backwards

Recently, I wrote on Twitter if I am jewish is my dog jewish? If you are catholic or protestant does your dog follow your religion?

Although humans have had, worked and used dogs for over 10,000 years, folklore about dogs has not been seriously researched until recently. In Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, the dog is seldom mentioned and when it is, the reference is usually negative. But in ancient Greece, Rome, Persia and China, there is much folklore and superstition surrounding dogs who were written about and/or participated in religious rituals. Moreover, these are the regions where some of the earliest and most sophisticated dog breeding took place, kennel masters were praised and dog were considered companions as well as warriors too.

Over the years but especially in the modern world, views about our dogs have changed. Now, dogs play such a vital role in some people's lives and are considered part of the famly and in many cases, a life-line to the outside world. It is this attitude that has many dog-owning church-goers questioning doctrines teaching that animals do not have souls and do not go to heaven. Many people who love and feel a spiritual connection with their dogs, cats, and other pets complain that compassion for animals is treated as unimportant by the religious community. They complain that spiritual support is lacking during times of pet illness and pet loss.

However, pet owners do have opportunities to have their pets blessed at least once year. This weekend, pet blessings are happening around the world, on or near October 4th for the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi. There are many of the stories that surround the life of St. Francis deal with his love for animals. The two most significant involve him speaking to birds about how they have been blessed God and the other describes him making peace between a wolf and the village he terrorized for food. He is a favorite saint because he preached to man and beast the universal ability and duty of all creatures to praise God and the duty of men to protect and enjoy nature as both the stewards of God's creation and as creatures ourselves.

In order to celebrate his universally message, manhattan pet owners can go to uptown to the Episcopal St. John the Divine at 1047 Amserdam Avenue or downtown to catholic St. Anthony of Padua Church on 154 Sullivan Street to have their animal blessed.

I am jewish but I am going to take this opportunity to get my pets blessed.

I believe HE is everywhere.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Are You A Cat or Dog Person?

The Cat Fanciers’ Association® (CFA) is asking cat owners to cast their vote to pronounce cats America’s most favored pet in the pet preference poll. Preliminary results indicate that dogs are leading the pack with 74%, while cats have 26% of the vote.

Pam DelaBar, President & CEO of the CFA is calling on approximately 88.3 million cat owners in the United States to wake up from their cat nap and vote. “Cat owners outnumber dogs by nearly 13 million among the pet-owning public,” said DelaBar. “What better way to share your love for your feline by casting your vote and giving cats the respect they deserve.”

Both dog and cat lovers have begun to voice their choices. One cat owners remarked that most cats are indoor, don’t have to be walked and don’t bark! While a dog-loving voter, on the other hand, argued that “Dogs never judge, are always happy to see you, give unconditional love, help the blind to walk and aid others with disabilities live productive lives.”

Pet owners can cast their vote online at before October 6, 2009 and let us know what you think makes a dog or cat the preferred pet and download free virtual Dogs are #1” and “Cats are #1” stickers for your Web site, blog or social media pages. Check back on the site after October 14 for the announcement of the winning pet.

Sponsored by PetPartners, Inc. a leading pet healthcare provider, Meet the Breeds will be held October 17 & 18, 2009 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York City. The event will showcase 160 AKC registered dog breeds and 41 CFA registered cat breeds in booths individually decorated to depict each breed’s country of origin, historical purpose/function, and attributes as a family pet. This family-friendly event is an opportunity for potential pet owners to interact with responsible breeders and play with dogs and cats while educating themselves about responsible pet ownership and choosing the right pet for their lifestyle.

Event hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both Saturday, October 17, and Sunday, October 18. Tickets allow admittance for one day and can be purchased at

An Evening of Imagery and Dialogue

Goodbye, a provocative short film about the effect of technology on our most important relationships, is scheduled for a private screening by the Metropolitan Dog Club on Thursday, October 15th at the Metropolitan Republican Club at 122 East 83rd Street between Lexington and Park Avenues. Members and guests of the dog club are invited to attend an evening composed of the screening followed by an open discussion about the way our lives and our dogs' lives have changed in the 21st century.

The film, set against a New York City backdrop, follows a day-in-the-life of an average New Yorker, severely reliant upon her tools of technology. The narration of the film unites the everyday images on the screen with a new sense of understanding and purpose for what it means to create, have and sustain meaningful relationships with daily distractions. Goodbye will speak to New Yorkers, dog owners and others, reminding us all what it should mean to connect.

According to the filmmaker, Jeff Baron, “Technology has exploded in the past twenty years. It happened so quickly that we have not yet taken the time to step back and survey how being constantly connected---text, email, Facebook and Twitter---with hundreds of people affects our closest relationships with those we actually live with and see.”

Moreover, dog owners can relate to the relationship between female character and her canine companion. “The connection women have with dogs is biological, chemical, emotional and more,” states best-selling author and dog trainer, Sarah Wilson. “It is profound and unique; nourishing and complex,” she says.

After the film, a panel of experts will discuss how the our lives and the lives of dogs' lived changed in the 21st century. Wine and Hors d'Oeuvres served and included in the price of admission. To learn more about this event, visit

Time for a Pet Move

Now that Matt is working in New York City, we decided that we need a change of venue. Really, we just need a fresh start in an apartment that we can decorate together. We need an apartment that will really just belong to both us.

While I love living on Broome Street with all of its advantages: Prada, Chanel, the Apple Store, Dean & DeLuca, Whole Foods, etc. And all of my Chinese and Senior Italian friends, we are really tired of the tourists, the traffic and dirt. Must I not forgot San Genaro. Two weeks of living Hell on Earth. With urine, vomit and rat infested street in which food is left out. Don't let me get started.
We need to move because we need more room. The solution is to pack it all up and move way uptown to a bigger apartment at a reasonable price. And that is why I decided to look on the Upper West in the 150's and 160's.

After a quick trip to my storage facility to reorganize and deliver boxes, we stopped for lunch at Charlie's Southern Fried Chicken at 151 at 8th Avenue for some down home gluttonous gourmet. We convenienced ourselves we need strenth before viewing apartments! We ate fried chicken, mac & cheese, sweet potatoes, ribs, collard greens, green beans and more. There was even food to bring home for dinner. After sitting down to feast, I controlled myself so that I did not eat so much food that I couldn't look at apartments.

After a massive lunce, we hooked up with a real estate agent to view apartments. We primarily looked at building one block east or west of Broadway. Matt and I were happy to see clean street, nice folks and large, pet friendly apartments. Before meeting with the broker, I reviewed a booklet that I wrote in 2002 about finding and relocating to a new home.

Below please find a few tips for looking for a new apartment or home with pets:

1. Discuss your pet(s) at your first meeting with a real estate professional. Tell your agent about its breed, size and personality.

2. Avoid realtors who encourage you to be dishonest about your pet. Work with professionals who want to help you find the best home for you and your animal.

3. Seek-out animal appropriate locations-buildings with service elevators, large hallways and a friendly staff, residential communities with sidewalks.

4. Think about your animal's needs. Make sure that your new residence is big enough. For cats, choose a home with a large lighted window For Dogs, pick a place with a yard nearby park or dog run.

5. Before moving, visit the neighborhood to seek out other pet owners. Ask if your new residence and neighborhood are animal-friendly.

6. Investigate all animal-related costs. Many apartments buildings, condos, co-ops and gated communities require tenants/owners to pay a nonrefundable bond for their animals. Ask if there are monthly pet maintenance fees.

7. Learn about building rules, as well as local and state regulations-including the number of pets allowed per unite. Check with the building and local health department for updated information.

8. Let neighbors knows that you have a pet. Tell them you have moved in with a dog or cat and that your animal might need a few days of adjustment before settling in. Ask them to tell you if they hear excessive meowing or barking. Thank them for understanding.

9. Don't let your pet become a nuisance. At the first sign of a problem, consult a professional dog trainer or animal behavior counselor. Ger a referral from your vet, local shelter or Yellow pages or web.

10. If your building requires a board interview, prepare your pet. Make sure your animal is looking and feeling its best. Schedule a grooming appointment so your pet can make a proper impression. Consult an obedience trainer a few weeks in advance to help you prepare your dog for a sit/stay interview.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

2010 Business of Pet Writing Conference

In today’s shaky economy you need an edge. The world of niche pet writing is like any other these days; more individuals vying for less writing assignments and publishing opportunities. Transcend your pet writing competition by attending the second annual Business of Pet Writing Conference hosted by pet expert and author Charlotte Reed, on Saturday, February 13th, 2010 in the publishing capital of the world, New York City.

The 2010 Business of Pet Writing Conference features a variety of seminars designed to give pet writers inside information, detailed direction and constructive criticism about writing, publishing and selling their work. Topics include “How Libraries Build Their Pet Book Collections”, led by Library Journal book review editor, Wilma Williams, “Leveraging Social Media for Profit”, led by book marketing and media expert, Penny Sansevieri and “The Basics of Children’s Publishing”, led by author Harold Underdown.

In addition to the expert led seminars, the Pet Writing Conference also offers agent and magazine panels composed of animal interest magazine and successful agents discussing the direction magazine and publishing houses are taking. Specifically, the agent panelists will discuss the future of the publishing industry and how the agent works with the writer to sell a book proposal. The magazine panel will cover the difference of pitching magazine versus online content. Beyond the panel discussions, representatives from Folio Literary Management, Epstein Literary, Foundry Literary + Media, and others will be available for one-on-one sessions.

Editors from such notable publications as Bowtie Press, Kennel Club Books, Animal Wellness, Dog Fancy, Doggie Aficionado, Alpine Publications, St. Martin’s Press, Dog Wise Publishing, TFH Publications, Dogs in Review, Barron’s Publishing, Storey Publishing and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt will also be on hand for personal sessions with pet writers to discuss book and magazine pitches and proposals.

"The first Business of Pet Writing Conference was an unqualified success for all parties involved. Agents, editors, writers of all levels and sponsors had the opportunity to learn and network,” states Business of Pet Writing Conference founder, Charlotte Reed. “The upcoming Business of Pet Writing Conference will be equally as successful and beneficial to writers, editors, agents, and publishers looking to get ahead in the genre of animal interest.”

The Business of Pet Writing Conference is sponsored by a variety of distinguished organizations including the American Animal Hospital Association; Automobile Association of American; the American Pet Products Association; the Cat Fancier’s Association; Dyson; Halo, Purely for Pets; the Metropolitan Dog Club, and the Pet Food Institute.

Guarantee a unique opportunity to meet with publishing insiders and pet industry experts by registering early for the 2010 Business of Pet Writing Conference. The conference is offering an Early Bird special of $150 for applicants registering before October 31st. Applicants registering on November 1st will enjoy the equally reasonable price increase of $175 to attend. For more information about the Business of Pet Writing Conference, contact The Pet Socialite, Inc. 362 Broome Street, Ste.. #20, New York, New York 10013. Email: Telephone: 212-631-3648. Fax: 888-492-3452.