Archive for 2013

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28 Oct 13

Best Dog Howl-o-ween Costumes! ...

by Nancy E. Hassel,

Howl-o-ween pet events, parades and costume contests were everywhere on Long Island and New York City this past weekend!  Literally from Southamton to NYC, dogs were dressed in very elaborate costumes to a simple bandana.  It’s quite adorable to see, and a lot of the dogs love all the attention as you can see them strutt their stuff while in costume.

This adogable bumble bee’s owner was also dressed in a bee costume!

This scarecrow pup wasn’t so scary, but so cute he almost didn’t look real!

Not quite sure what this costume was, but this little guy clearly can’t have any chocolate!

Handsome fire fighter!

Super beagles save the day!

Do you have an angel or devil on your shoulder? Izzy & Igor, everyone loves a bulldog!

Part peacock, part dog!

A creep crawly spider that is just too cute!

For more PICTURES of dog costumes from throughout the weekend, click HERE and HERE!  Like your favorite!

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15 Oct 13

Overlooked Dogs~Part 2 & 3 ...

by Nancy E. Hassel,

Part 3 of our Lifer Series…overlooked dogs that have been in a shelter for 6 months or longer. Please share their stories so they too can find their furever home during October which is Adopt-a-Shelter dog Month.

Meet Ms. HoneyBee, one of the most beautiful, gentle souls up for adoption at the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter. Honey came to the shelter as a stray on the 4th of July. She was found cowering on the streets; so frighten by the sound of fireworks we could hardly get her onto our truck.

Honey is a 6 year young pure breed Cane Corso. Honey’s spirit was broken when she came to us and she was depressed for quite some time. But after some “Good Ole” TLC Honey has blossomed into the perfect lady.  At some point Honey was loved by someone because she knows many commands: sit – down- stay- paw and she is also housetrained. Please give Honey the second chance and forever home she deserves; come to the shelter to adopt her.

Bio on Lady Rebecca

Meet Lady Rebecca. She is 75lbs of pure, unconditional love. Our Lady is a canine cancer survivor and now she needs a home to live the joys of a second chance at life.  Lady Rebecca loves, loves, LOVES people but prefers to be your one and only pet.  If you can foster or give this great girl a forever home, please contact Save-a-Pet in Port Jefferson or 631.473.6333 and request to meet her today.

Part 2 of our Lifer Series…overlooked dogs that have been in a shelter for 6 months or longer. Please share their stories so they too can find their furever home during October which is Adopt-a-Shelter dog Month.

This is Mia from Almost Home Animal Rescue & Adoption, Inc. Mia is a 4yr old spayed female. Mia is good with kids (older kids due to her size) and is dog selective best paired with a submissive dog, NO CATS. Mia loves belly rubs and going to the beach! Mia had 13 puppies all her puppies were adopted and Momma Mia has been waiting since March 2011 for her forever home! Please contact Jen 631-627-3665 or

I am a  handsome 9 year old basset hound mix with beautiful markings.  I prefer a one person family that just wants to hang out with me, their only dog. I only have a few needs – food, treats, and a nice fenced yard.  I love to go out and bark at anything that catches my eye. So maybe a home in the country is best. And of course, I love to be inside to take naps and watch what you are doing.  I’m not one that cares for a harness – too much fuss.  As a matter of fact, I will go for a walk, but if you are too busy – I am just fine going out in  my fenced yard. ~ Contact Lisa Packer at

Noelle is a Pointer mix who is between three and four years old. She has been at the shelter since October of 2012. She loves to run and play outside and would do great in a home with a yard. She is friendly and will give kisses. She is possessive of her toys though, so please no children under the age of 8. She gets along with some dogs and cats. Visit her at the Town of Islip Adopt A Pet center at 201 S. Denver Avenue, Bay Shore, NY 11706.

Photo credit: Sole Riley

Dog # 27 whose new name is “Pretty Girl” was found wounded, bloodied and emaciated in a garage where illegal dog fighting was taking place.

Pretty Girl and 17 other pit bulls were seized during the raid, and taken to local animal hospitals and to the local Animal Shelter.  Three had to be euthanized immediately because of their injuries.  Fortunately, Pretty Girl, despite her injuries, was rehabilitated thanks to excellent veterinary care funded by the local Animal Shelter and the Nassau County District Attorney’s office.  At ARF, Pretty Girl was diagnosed with a blood-borne parasite (Babesia gibsonia) that is associated with dogs used in fighting.  After treatment, she has made a full recovery.

Once her physical injuries were healed, Pretty Girl’s mental state had to be addressed.  “The small staff at the local Shelter did an amazing job with her” commented ARF’s Executive Director, Sara Davison.  All the dogs were evaluated by the ASPCA’s Anti-Cruelty Behavior Team and many of them exhibited aggression towards dogs.  Dog aggression is a behavioral trait obviously encouraged by dog fighting rings.  Despite her dog aggressive tendencies, Pretty Girl was assessed by the ASPCA as an “affectionate social dog…a good candidate for rehabilitation.”

At ARF she has started basic obedience training and further de-sensitization to other dogs.  Her “finishing school” included long walks in the woods, muzzled interactions with other dogs, lots of exposure to people and obedience training.  Today she has made many dog friends at ARF and is allowed to join them in play groups unmuzzled! Pretty Girl is a survivor.  She let kindness and compassion heal her broken heart.  She now deserves to live happily ever after.  For information on adopting Pretty Girl contact the ARF Adoption Team at 631-537-0400 ext. 203.

Please note the Town of Brookhaven Animal Shelter is now open again – they have, as of press time of this article, 209 dogs that need homes there.  Please contact the shelter or go visit to help the animals there. 209 DOGS!

Want to feature your rescue dog in this 4-part Lifer Series of articles?

Please email, send a jpg of the dog, description about the dog, what shelter the dog is in, how long the dog has been in the shelter, and Contact info, etc.  The dog must be in a municipal shelter at least 6-months or more and/or with official non-profit Rescue group shelter.  Thank you!

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14 Oct 13

Doggie Day Trip ~ North Fork! ...

by Nancy E. Hassel,

Doggie Day Trip – the NoFo! (That’s North Fork of Long Island!)

If you have yet to visit the North Fork (NoFo) of Long Island with your pup – you are missing out!  The NoFo is the perfect day-trip destination if you are looking to do wine tasting, pumpkin or apple picking, a walk on the beach or to enjoy lunch or dinner in one of the quaint towns with your dog!

Recently I took my dog Max, who is 12 years old on a doggie day trip to the NoFo for all of the above.  My cousin came with me and we had such a relaxing day, and Max had a great time exploring some old haunts and new ones too – pretty dog-gone good for a senior pup!

We first went to Martha Clara Vineyards in Riverhead – and it is pet friendly, leashed of course, and offers some of the most spectacular grounds to walk along.  You can bring a picnic lunch and hang outside at one of the many tables or picnic benches provided, and sip some MCV wine as your dog chills out.  I prefer to walk Max around the grounds, being respectful of all the beautiful farm animals they have there (goats, sheep, turtles, cows, horses and more), and then back to picnic area to enjoy wine and cheese.  This way you get some of that puppy (or senior dog) energy out first.

Meet n greet!

After an hour or so, we headed to Love Lane in Mattituck – to go where else, but Love Lane Kitchen for lunch.  They have a lovely little outdoor patio next to the restaurant where we could sit with Max and enjoy a delicious lunch.  After lunch we walked around Love Lane visited some of the shops (please note: I didn’t bring Max into the stores, but there is a pet boutique on Love Lane you can visit with your pup).

Our next stop, the bay beach of course, so Max could dip his toes in the water!  There is a dog friendly beach called Bailey’s Beach in Mattituck, but we actually just drove to a bay beach in Jamesport and just stopped there for a little while, there were no ‘no dog’ signs and since it was off season no one was there – perfect.

Love it!  Max stayed on his leash – a good recomendation to do so with your dog, and be respectful of the surrounding neighborhood and beaches, and obey any signs posted.  We then headed to one of the many local pumpkin farms to get pumpkins, mums, sunflowers and a few farm stand veggies that are in season.

There are so many things to do, see and enjoy with your dog on the NoFo and people are very friendly.  It is doable for a day trip, for sure.  I am baffled when I hear of people that have been born and raised on LI – but have never been to the NoFo – it’s crazy! :)  Dogs like to get out and explore new areas and see new things – the NoFo is the perfect fall getaway, for a daycation, that is not too far away.  You and your pup will be so relaxed by the time you get back home and the sceenary is beautiful no matter where you go on the North Fork.

But if you want to spend a weekend there – lucky for us there are now two hotels that I know of that are also pet friendly close to the NoFo!  The first is the Hyatt East End in Riverhead – they are pet friendly for dogs up to 50lbs and have beautiful accomodations.  Located right next to the Long Island Aquarium, in Riverhead village, you can walk your dog along the beautiful river front steps from the hotel.

The second hotel is the Hotel Indigo East End also in Riverhead, but closer to Calverton and also offer pet friendly accomodations.

And if you are looking for a dog trainer or pet sitter while on the NoFo, contact Dawn Bennett of North Fork School of Dog Training – she might even give you some info on places to go with your dog that I haven’t mentioned above.

And some tips if you do take a Doggie Day Trip:

  • Go during the week if you can, it is less crowded and that means less traffic.
  • Bring supplies for your dog: water, food, pet first aid kit (just in case), poop bags to pick up.
  • Be sure to stop and walk your dog and let him or her do his business along the way (and of course clean up after your dog).
  • Ask if you can bring your dog onto the property of a vineyard (although most are dog friendly), and the same for any of the pumpkin/apple farms.  Be courteous and know your dog!  If your pup is going to freak out if he sees a cow – be sure to have something with your to distract him (think high value treats, toys, ball, etc.)
  • If your dog is not used to long car rides, start taking him for some rides each day longer and longer that lead up to a daycation trip, so he gets used to it.
  • Bring an extra leash and collar with you – and be sure to have up-to-date ID tags on him, just in case.
  • And most of all have fun, take lots of pictures and enjoy!

Another favorite spot is Greenport, a photo of Max there from a few years ago!  To see More Pictures of our NoFo Doggie Day trip, CLICK HERE!

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08 Oct 13

‘Lifer’ Dog – Part ...

by Nancy E. Hassel,


By now you should know that October is Adopt-a-Shelter Dog Month, and while so many people do adopt from shelters (thank you!), many dogs are there way too long – and are overlooked.  A potential adopter may be walking through a local shelter and find out that a dog they are looking at has been there for a year or two and walk away thinking, “there has to be something wrong with that dog.” Which is a real shame.  I encourage you, if you are a potential adoper to stop before you move on and give the dog a chance.  Ask the volunteer or shelter worker about the dog and find out his or her personality, likes and take some time in the adoption room to get to know the dog.  Ask to have them bring the dog outside away from the noise and really take some time with the dog.  You may just find this is the dog for you, the dog that you too were going to over look.  I double-dog dare ya to find out more about the lifer dog that is desperately wishing for his own furever home.

There is a really great quote, that sums it up: ”Rescuing one dog may not change the world, but for that one dog, his world will be changed forever.”

Each week, for the next 4 weeks, you will see a ‘Lifer’s’ series of articles here – how can you change a local lifer dogs life? By adopting of course, but if you can’t adopt or foster, you can share his or her story by sharing the article, and just possibly your share can change the world for one of the dogs below!

Thank you to the participating shelters who care for and lobby to find these ‘lifers’ a home.

Envy is a female Pit Bull about 4 years old that needs a home without cats. She gets along with some dogs. Would be fine with children. She has been with the shelter since August of 2012. She waits patiently and quietly in her cage every day but is always overlooked. When out of the cage she loves to roll around on the grass or floor and likes her belly rubbed. She is a happy girl who can entertain herself. Envy is deaf and will need to be taught hand signals for her training. Envy is at the Town of Islip Animal Shelter - call (631) 224-5660 or go to 210 S. Denver Avenue, Bay Shore, NY 11706

This is Ruby from Almost Home Animal Rescue & Adoption, Inc. Ruby is approx. 4-5 years old, spayed . Ruby loves car rides and going for long walks/jogs! Ruby loves people of all ages, good with children, a real snuggle bug but must be the only pet. She has been with our rescue for 3 years now waiting for her forever home! Please contact Jen @ 631-627-3665 or

This beautiful girl is Mona, she has been at the shelter since 2011. Mona is a very happy and playful young three year old and approximately 60 pounds. Mona is spayed, up to date on vaccinations, micro-chipped and heart-worm negative…what more could you ask for. She will bring you sunshine everyday and be a great exercise partner. Could Mona be your perfect match, come down and meet her at the Brookhaven Animal Shelter. Call 631.286.4940 to arrange a date to meet this doll.

Photo by Sole Riley. Sparky was found as a stray in Southampton. This 9 year old still has a lot of energy and has a great love of life. He needs a home without other dogs or cats. A great companion, he enjoys going for long walks and watching movies. Sparky is part of ARF’s Scholarship Program which helps our older animals and special needs animals with minor medical conditions, find homes. The scholarship program will provide financial assistance to the person or family that adopts Sparky into their loving home. Sparky has been at ARF for a few years. For more information call our adoption team at 631-537-0400 x203.

This week is Julie's one year anniversary at the Islip Animal Shelter and Adopt-A-Pet Center. She is a sweet senior Rottie mix who is roughly 7 years old. She would make a great pet for anyone looking for a mature companion. She loves her tennis balls but calms down quick. Julie would prefer to be the only pet and would do best in a home without children. Visit Julie at the Islip Animal Shelter and Adopt-A-Pet Center at 210 South Denver Ave, Bay Shore, New York 11706

Please note the Town of Brookhaven Animal Shelter is now open again – they have, as of press time of this article, 209 dogs that need homes there.  Please contact the shelter or go visit to help the animals there. 209 DOGS!

Want to feature your rescue dog in this 4-part Lifer Series of articles?

Please email, send a jpg of the dog, description about the dog, what shelter the dog is in, how long the dog has been in the shelter, and Contact info, etc.  The dog must be in a municipal shelter at least 6-months or more and/or with official non-profit Rescue group shelter.  Thank you!

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08 Oct 13

Birds of a feather ...

by Nancy E. Hassel,

The annual Parrot Expo held by the Long Island Parrot Society was held on Saturday, October 5, 2013 at the Freeport Recreation Center in Freeport, N.Y.  Hundreds of bird afficiando’s flocked to the center to see the many different birds and parrots, listen to expert speakers and see many unusual and practical bird items displayed by the vendors.

Lady Gouldian Finch

Two things that stopped me in my tracks, ok 3, was the parrot stroller for sale – we have all seen the doggie strollers – but this well equipped and very nicely made stroller for your parrot was a first for this pet pro.  Made by Celltei they carried a large line of different types of carriers for your birds and othet pets. The bird stroller and other assoried bird carriers is a whole niche market in my opinion.

The 2nd item that made me stop was a very large bird cage in the center of the vendor area.  You could easily fit 20 or so people in it, standing – now that is a bird cage.

The 3rd time I was stopped in my tracks is when I noticed this beautiful black palm cockatoo.  Up until this point I never saw or heard of this bird before – very unique looking and pretty.  As soon as he saw my camera, he popped up his head feathers, turned and posed for his pic. Seriously a complete ham!

If you missed the Parrot Expo, LIPS hosts meetings every month at the American Legion Post in Babylon Village, like a mini expo every month with different speakers, product and birds to see.  For more info on LIPS click here.  For more pictures from the Parrot Expo CLICK here!