Thursday, May 27, 2010


If you were 2 years old but felt like 14 in human years, and you never had the chance to run, play with others that look like you, splash in the water, or just hang out with friends, you would be frustrated too!

Dudley is 2 and from what we can tell, was never given much, if any attention or training. He was fed well and kept safe but not much else. Even after joining BTRNC, he had to wait even longer to recover from cherry eye. Now, finally, Dudley can run and run and play and run and play and run and play - you get the idea!. He is making up for lost time. He is a big boy at over 30 pounds but he doesn't think that is any bigger than any other dog. He is a strong boy, but he doesn't know it.

Who me?

His foster finally cried Uncle and asked the group for ideas on how to tire out this gorgeous boy just a little faster. His foster family is having a hard time keeping up with him and we are sure his foster fur siblings could use a rest as well.

Day care, swimming, and back packs were all good suggestions. Back packs filled with size appropriate weights such as water bottles can be slung over a dog's back while on walks. The extra weight makes the dog tire faster, just like we do. If you try this, however, please check with your vet and make sure you are not over filling the pack and creating too much weight on the dogs back. Tired is good, injured is not.

Dudley loves the water, loves to hike, loves to swim, and loves just about anything that involves an activity. Dudley runs and plays hard and would enjoy the company of a similar energy drive playmate. He really does occasionally wear out and snuggle too!

If you have an active family and want an active 4 legged companion, Dudley may be your boy! As you grow older, so will he, and your energy levels should actually match in a few years or at the least, you can enjoy a break from all the exercise even if just for a time!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

7th Anniversary Day In the Park Celebration
BTRNC had such a wonderful time at our 5 year anniversary party, that we decided to do it again to mark 7 years.

A grand time was had by all once again. It was hot and the 50+ bostons in attendance enjoyed the pool thoughtfully brought by one of our members. Sweet Pea in particular tried to cool off in a larger size water bowl. Hey, whatever works.

One of the highlights is a book created by another member. It is entitled "The ABC's of BTRNC". It tells the story through pictures and captions of BTRNC 2003-2010 with adopted dogs, families, memorials, events, and features.

If you were able to make it to the celebration, you got to see the sample copy. If not, as I was not, I am told that it is a beautiful book with lots of pictures, poetry and stories.

This commemorative book is available for a limited time for $30.00, $5.00 of which will to directly to BTRNC. More details and information is currently posted on our home page.

A huge thank you to all those who attended the event, all those who helped plan and coordinate the event, and all those who could not make it but have lent us their support over the past 7 years.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Many years ago, I went with a friend of mine to adopt a dog from the local shelter. They already had two dogs and wanted to add another. She picked out a sad looking black lab mix and put him in the car. On the way home, I happened to read the information card on the new addition. Only then were we aware that the dog had been turned into the shelter because he did not get along with other dogs and was aggressive. My friend, his new owner just shrugged and said, we'll work it out.

Well guess what, Buck never showed even the smallest aggression toward any dog or person in the house. He got along wonderfully with everyone and lived a very long, happy and healthy life. If we had read the card before selecting Buck, would he have gone home with us? How many others had passed him by who had read the card. What was the environment at his first home that caused him to be turned into a shelter because he didn't get along with other dogs?
New arrivals should be introduced on leashes with a different handler on each lead and in neutral territory if at all possible. After the first introduction, the animals should be separated with supervised time together at intervals until there is an invitation to play from the resident dog or until it is obvious from their interaction that no harm is intended.
Often times, when BTRNC first posts a rescue bio, we will indicate issues about getting along with other dogs or cats. We want to let potential adopters know as much as possible about our rescues. It is just as true that we often update the bio at a later time to remove that item because the rescue has learned to feel secure or has learned the fine art of play and no longer as fearful or aggressive of other dogs.
Stitch is a rescue who has some issues to overcome with other dogs. She has made some significant improvements with some of her issues. When joining rescue, Stitch was a dog darter who would bolt out the door from fear, not sure if the greater threats were inside or outside her foster home. She was also very nervous around all other dogs, again she was afraid.
Her foster Mom plays soothing CDs to help her switch focus from barking dogs. Stitch has had lots of opportunities to meet dogs of all temperaments and can show tolerance to mellow and calm dogs. She is still unpredictable and does not always back down at the retreat or submissive posture of another dog. There is still more work to be done.
In the meantime, Stitch is an example of the thin line between aggression and pack order. She is a beautiful and sweet dog. We know she would do well as an only dog. Would she do well in a different environment with other dogs? This is something that would need to be explored with Foster Mom and prospective adopter.
We will never truly know what dogs know and why they act one way in one home, and another in a different environment. Just one of the many personality traits that makes us humans so fascinated by them!
If you would like to learn more about Stitch, please follow the contact link on our home page so a rescue volunteer can work with you.

Friday, May 14, 2010


Mast cell cancer is unfortunately not that uncommon in dogs these days. The Internet has endless information about the disease. If you are interested in learning more, just search mast cell cancer.

Mast cells on the skin can be removed surgically and if the vet is able to get good margins (space on each side of the tumor site), recovery chances are very good. If however, the mast cells have multiplied and attached to the internal organs, recovery chances drop considerably.

Our sanctuary resident Willis came to rescue with mast cell cancer already in his organs. Willis also has serious health problems with his eyes. I first met Willis 2 years ago at our 5 year anniversary event. At that time, I assumed he was living out his last days with a wonderful loving foster Mom who adored him. The feeling was clearly mutual. Willis likes to be held by his Mom a lot, so much in fact, he would whine when she wasn't near and basically asked that she return to him and pick him up.

Well that was 2 years ago and Willis is still with us, still loved and still providing endless love to his Mom. His eyes continue to degenerate and he now has the equivalent of middle age baldness syndrome so he is loosing some of his fur. But he is still spoiled rotten and loving life. He does not however choose to play well with those outside his family. He was sent to the dug out at a recent play date at a softball field for unnecessary roughness on a golden retriever. Willis was happy to take to the dug out as long as Mom went with him.

Just one of the amazing qualities that dogs have is the ability not to know they are sick and therefore not to worry about it. The just take one day at a time. For Willis, every day is a gift for him and his Mom.

We won't ever count you out Willis. We hope you stay on this side of the bridge for a very long time.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Another line from another old song... I don't know the original artist but I'll credit Patti page here.
How much is that doggie in the window? (arf! arf!)
The one with the waggley tail
How much is that doggie in the window? (arf! arf!)
I do hope that doggie's for sale

Cute song, cute meaning. Unfortunately, the real question today should be "what price did that cute dog's mother pay to bring him to the window?"

Yes, I am referring to Puppy Mills, and I neither claim to be a news reporter or an expert on dog breeding, but in this blog, I can express opinions and educate.

The next time you see a puppy at a pet store, try this visual. The mother and father are somewhere in a cage only let out to procreate. They may never have felt grass beneath their feet, know what a toy or what a pat on the head feels like. Then picture those same dogs being dumped under bridges on road sides, in tunnels, and if they are lucky at shelters, when their breeding days are done.

All puppies at all pet stores are not born in this environment and you should research your local pet store before making assumptions, but the sad truth is that for many of them, this is an accurate summary.

And yes, that cute puppy in the cage is guilty of nothing and deserves a chance. If more and more people would stop buying from pet stores who utilize puppy mills, then eventually, the demand would go down and so would the need to purchase more puppy mill breeder dogs. Also, if enough people are educated and take up this cause, perhaps legislation and laws can be enacted at the State level that would regulate the care and treatment of these dogs. In the meantime, if everyone would either rescue or purchase directly from a reputable breeder, then there would not be a need for puppy mills.
Tomorrow, May 8th is Puppy Mill Awareness Day in North Carolina.

Here is the link to the website:

Activities are from 11-5 at Moore Square Park in Raleigh, NC. Special guests include Victoria Stillwell and Rescue Ink.

If just one reader of this blog is enlightened by what they read here or attends the event, then it will be more than worth the time and emotional energy it took to write it! One at a time!

Thank you
BTRNC and the Boastful Boston