Apparently some folks think it's a better idea than sending clients the same old fruitcake and/or silly desk tsotchke. Read a Boston Globe story about the pet gift baskets that are meant to get noticed.
This is not a political blog and I suspect that people of all perspectives read it, so I try to stay away from anything controversial that isn't directly related to critters. But I can't quite restrain myself here. Blackwater, the contract sercurity company that many people believe is running amok in Iraq, killing innocent people for no reason - who, after all, has the power to stop them? - is under investigation for yet another travesty. I hope SOMEONE gets to the truth here, because I have a hard time believing anything these people say. From the NY Post:
DOG OF WAR
NY TIMES' PET SHOT BY BLACKWATER
By ANDY SOLTIS, Post Wire Services
The paper's representatives in the Iraqi capital said yesterday that security guards from the embattled private firm killed their beloved dog, named Hentish, last week.
The State Department would not say yesterday whether the Times - which has strongly denounced Blackwater and opposed the war in Iraq on its editorial pages - had requested the probe.
Blackwater, already under investigation for killing 17 Iraqis in a Baghdad gunfight in September, insisted that Hentish started it - by attacking one of the firm's own bomb-sniffing security dogs.
"The dog attacked our canine and attempts to calm the other dog were unsuccessful," said Anny Tyrell, a spokeswoman for the North Carolina-based company.
The Times said the incident occurred before a US diplomat was to visit the newspaper's Baghdad compound.
Blackwater, which protects senior US diplomatic and other civilian officers in Iraq, said it sent a security team to sweep the area for explosives.
But Hentish fought one of the bomb-sniffing dogs and couldn't be contained by a Blackwater official, the firm said.
"The K-9 handler made several unsuccessful attempts to get the dog to retreat, including placing himself between the dogs," Tyrell said.
"When those efforts failed, the K-9 handler unfortunately was forced to use a pistol to protect the company's K-9 and himself," she said.
The State Department would not say yesterday how it became involved. A spokeswoman said only it was "looking into" the reports.
But officials from the US embassy began an investigation. Embassy officials made two visits to the Times compound, correspondent Alissa Rubin told Reuters.
Efforts to reach the Times in Baghdad were unsuccessful and a spokesman in New York did not return a call seeking comment.
The Times under its publisher, Arthur "Pinch" Sulzberger Jr., has blasted Blackwater in the aftermath of the September shootings.
This is from the folks promoting the IAMS Home 4 the Holidays program, which is a national pet-adoption drive that runs through Jan. 2. The goal is to place 415,000 critters in loving homes. Audrey here lucked out bigtime:
''Audrey (named after Audrey Hepburn because of her beauty and grace), was brought to Broward County Animal Care earlier this year after having been hit by a car. The Chief Veterinarian worked feverishly to save this little lady, who was desperately clinging to life. Her leg was removed and she was set on a course of major rehabilitation. When South Florida resident Melanie Rushe' first met Audrey at the Wellness Clinic, it was love at first sight. Melanie and her husband soon adopted the little dog and are inspired by her tenacity on a daily basis...Broward County Animal Care is just one of more than 2,600 participating shelters worldwide that are joining together to enhance the lives of dogs and cats and find loving homes for orphaned pets. ''
IAMS is giving every adopter a starter kit for the new member of the family. Click here to see all the participating Florida shelters and rescue groups.
Boysie is a purebred beagle- not a kid anymore but still a great guy. He's in a foster home and needs someone to love him fulltime. Click on the Grateful Paws site for more info.
In the late '90s, David Huckabee participated in HANGING a stray dog at a freakin' BOY SCOUT camp! Now there are allegations that his father, a Republican presidential hopeful, then Arkansas governor, obstructed an attempt by the state police to investigate. Click here to read it in Newsweek.
This time in Boston, where the California group that pioneered dog rentals - for people too busy/preoccupied/noncommittal to actually keep a dog fulltime. Starts in the spring. As you can imagine, this is a controversial enterprise. On one side: people who think it's confusing and destabilizing for the dogs to be passed around from stranger to stranger; on the other, people who say that these were shelter dogs, and they're much better off than in a shelter cage. You be the judge. Click here for the Boston Globe story.
Give the Gift of Giving Back While Toasting a Fine Wine to Man's Best Friend
New York, NY - Hero by day and beloved pet by night, Wheeler is a working K-9 police dog named after a New York State Police officer lost in the line of duty. As an officer for the NYSP, the German Shepherd risks his life protecting others. To honor Wheeler's bravery and accomplishments, Dog Lovers Wine Club ( www.DogLoversWineClub.com ) will honor Wheeler on their "Dog of The Month" December Label. Dog Lovers Wine Club supports animal shelters and rescue organizations nationwide.
"Wheeler, 2004 Santa Barbara County Syrah"
Dogs like Wheeler are why Dog Lovers Wine Club was created and each month, they select a "top-dog" from stories and photos submitted by wine and dog enthusiasts across the United States. Each bottle features an inspirational real-life story and a beautiful custom label illustrating a dog. But the story does not end when the wine is poured. More than 40 non-profit animal shelters and rescue organizations benefit from each wine club membership and every sale. So toast the holiday season and support animals in need with Dog Lovers Wine Club.
Tammy Grimes, of Dogs Deserve Better, the group that exists only to save dogs from horrible lives in chains, was found guilty of theft and receiving stolen property for rescuing a dying, chained dog, Doogie. This is AFTER she'd gone through channels to try to get the county, in Pennsylvania, to do something about it. Terrible verdict. She's a hero. Visit her website: dogsdeservebetter.org.
She sent this out to supporters.
I wanted you to hear it from me before you heard it from anyone else. Today at 5:00 p.m. EST I was convicted of theft and receiving stolen property in a Blair County, PA courtroom.
I'm sure I will have much more to say about this at a future date. For now I need a day or two to mourn and then begin to pick up my pieces and move on.
Please realize this is just a bump in my road, and I will not stop working for chained and penned dogs. I hope those of you who are on this list as supporters will stay with me...but I need you still believe in me and the work I've done to free dogs from lives of hell on the end of chains. To still believe in us and the differences we are beginning to make in the lives of chained dogs.
A very special thank you to the wonderful angels at Best Friends in Utah. They stood behind me, and I know they took flack for it. You are special people, and I am honored and touched to know you.
For all the rest of you who gave your time and energy to help me in my case, my deepest gratitude. You touch my heart.
For you, Doogie. May you rest in peace, knowing you were loved and cared for. Tammy
From the NY Times: three short essays by lucky folks who get to take their dogs to work. Click here to read 'em.
Last year we did the 12 Dogs of Christmas. This year the felines got equal time, in Saturday's Herald. I wasn't involved in the project but many kudos to my colleagues who were. The kitties are just adorable and the best news is that some from the Miami-Dade County shelter are already adopted. Way to go! Click here to see the layout.