Today is a MOST SPECIAL Day!

dakota gotcha day collage

TODAY IS DAKOTA’S 6TH GOTCHA DAY!!!

Dakota was the answer to my childhood dream

of having my own Sheltie

When I was 5, I met a Sheltie

that lived across the street who was named “Dandy”

that was it, I was hooked.

I used to only play with the kids that lived in that house

because of their Sheltie!!

At the time, I was obsessed with Lassie

and in my 5-year old mind

 the Sheltie that  I had fallen in love with,

was a mini “Lassie”

I later learned that Shelties

aren’t related to Collies at all

but are their own marvelous breed!

This video was not made by me

but it features one of my favorite Phil Collins songs

and celebrates one of the most wonderful,

sensitive, silly, loving and crazy breeds

THE SHELTIE!!!!!

HAPPY HAPPY GOTCHA DAY

TO OUR PRECIOUS DAKOTA!!

DADDY, CODY AND I LOVE YOU

“ALWAYS AND ALWAYS”

LOVE, “MOM”

Book Review: “Dogs Of Courage” by Lisa Rogak

I was honored to be given the opportunity to review Dogs Of Courage by Lisa Rogak.

Dogs of Courage is “the heroism and heart of working dogs around the world.”

Prior to reading this information packed book I was under the mistaken assumption that only certain breeds with certain “jobs” could be considered to be “dogs of courage.” I never suspected that a Chihuahua, or for that matter a Sheltie, would be a dog that could ever  earn the title of  Dogs Of Courage.  That mistaken thought reveals the cat lover in me, and shows just how much learning that I need to do to truly better  understand DOGS. Of course I LOVE dogs but I do admit that I am far less well versed about all things dog, than I am about all things CAT.

Photo Courtesy of macmillan

Photo Courtesy of macmillan

I never realized until reading  Dogs Of Courage, that EVERY dog has the potential of being a “dog of courage” regardless of their breed, size or particular talent.

From Dogs Of Courage: While we smile (and cry) when we hear stories on the news about courageous dogs, we rarely learn “Why dogs go out of their way to help us.” and “how do they get that way? How are dogs able to perform tasks and work in tandem with the humans who are their partners?” Dogs of Courage answers those questions and many more.

What Is a Dog of Courage?

It could be your next door neighbor’s dog, it could be a dog that works with police or fire, a dog trained as a therapy dog in a nursing home or hospital, a dog that works in a prison, even a movie star dog such as Lassie.  A “dog of courage” can have any one of a number of jobs that you will delight in reading about in full detail in this marvelous book.

Did you know?

  • That the smallest police dog in the world is an 8 lb Chihuahua named Midge who hails from Geauga County, Ohio?  Midge has appeared on the Rachael Ray Show, Fox and Friends, CNN, MSNBC and other media outlets.
  • That many arson investigators and insurance companies think that Labrador retrievers are the best dogs for arson work?
  • That Newfoundlands are considered to be the best breed for water work?
  • That a Collie named “Kira” works as a psychiatric service dog?

Being from Michigan, I was particularly intrigued reading about a Golden Retriever named Landon who was brought into a family to help their 10-year-old autistic son, David.  Landon was acquired from Paws with a Cause, a nonprofit organization in Wayland, Michigan that trains assistance dogs to help people with disabilities. Landon ended up helping David with his communication skills and enabled him to open up more. Landon also helped David be better able to fall asleep at night just by being by his side.

I urge you to buy this wonderful book. If you are an educator, this would be a marvelous book to use as a learning tool in the classroom to teach students about how important dogs are in our lives, not just as our trusted and playful companions, but to enable students to learn about  the many jobs that a dog may have and how important they are in helping us to better function in our  daily existence.

From the publisher St.Martin’s Press: Dogs of Courage reveals the heartwarming and awe-inspiring stories of these hard-working dogs, from the training they receive to the ways we honor their sacrifices and reward their years of service.  Dogs Of Courage is an incredible story of the vital role that dogs play as working heroes, it is a must-read for animal-lovers everywhere.

About the Author:

Lisa Rogak is the author of The Dogs Of War: The Courage, Love and Loyalty of Military Working Dogs, the Edgar-and Anthony-nominated Haunted Heart: The Life and Times of Stephen King, A Boy Named Shel: The Life and Times of Shel Silverstein,  and And Nothing But the Truthiness: The Rise (and Further Rise) of Stephen Colbert. She is also editor of the New York Times-bestselling Barack Obama in His Own Words.

ISBN: 1-250-02176-6

Could Your Dog Be The Next “Benji!!??” Walden Media Announces Global Online Casting Call For Canine Star Of NEW ‘Benji’ MOVIE

Hi everyone! It’s Dakota and welcome to Fun Friday! Oh my dog hold on to your tail!  Have I ever got news for YOU!

Are you adorable?

Do you have movie-star potential? Knowing many of you as I do I would say that ABSOLUTELY you do!

Are you Mr. or Mrs.” Pawsonality” Plus?

Yeah?

I KNEW IT!

Remember Benji, the cute as a puppy’s nose doggy from the movie of the same name? Since some of you are still young pups you might not be completely familiar with Benji so check this out!

Benji and friend

About Benji

One of the biggest success stories of independent American cinema, the original 1974 Benji tells the story of a homeless but beloved small-town stray who, together with a female companion, helps to foil a kidnapping. The film was written, produced, financed and directed by commercial director Joe Camp, Jr., for less than $100,000.  Unable to find a distributor among the Hollywood studios, Joe and wife Carolyn Camp released the G-rated film themselves, starting with a two-screen engagement in Dallas. Benji instantly connected with moviegoers, and eventually became a worldwide hit, spawning a franchise that included four sequels, numerous television specials, a Saturday morning series, a syndicated comic strip and a multitude of merchandising deals.  Over 73 million people—more than half of them adults—saw Benji in movie theatres and more than a billion people worldwide have seen it on television. The franchise remains hugely successful to this day, selling millions of DVDs in the past few years alone. 

Want a chance to be the next Benji?

Well read on my friends!

Dog Owners and Shelter Staff are Invited to Post Pictures of their Benji Lookalikes on a Special Facebook Page for a Chance to Land their Pet the Role of a Lifetime!!!

Look at that face!

In the days of the original Benji search, Facebook and social media didn’t exist and Benji was “discovered” in a shelter in California. To celebrate the efforts of our shelters nationwide, in addition to the Facebook search, the filmmakers will also be scouring animal shelters as well as traditional animal talent agencies and trainers for dogs that have the looks, onscreen charisma and ability to take direction required to step into the film’s starring role.

Here’s your chance to be famous!! Sadly for me I’m outta luck. I don’t look like Benji, but if they ever do a re-make of Lassie, hint-hint, I’m a shoo-in!!

See what I mean?? I would have that job in no time!

 

If you have a face as adorable as this one, hey even I gotta admit this guy is too cute 

Benji in leaves

then submit a photo of your dog, or of any  dog that you  know, by

going to the official Benji The Movie Facebook Page www.Facebook.com/benjithemovie. Any dog (breed, size, gender, age) can be submitted – this includes personal pets and shelter dogs!

 Hey!! If any of my pals win…remember poor ‘ol Dakota! I’ll have my paw held out for a few bones , oh and free movie tickets, free buttered popcorn and a front row seat when I watch ya on the Silver Screen!!!   I want to be the first to get your “pawtograph!!”

About Walden Media

Walden’s most recent co-production, Journey 2: The Mysterious Island, grossed over $300 million worldwide. Upcoming films include Won’t Back Down, Of Men and Mavericks and the family comedy Parental Guidance. Past award-winning films include The Chronicles of Narnia series, Journey to the Center of the Earth, Nim’s Island, Charlotte’s Web and the Sundance Audience Prize Winning documentary, Waiting for ‘Superman.’

Good luck my “furiends”!!

Barks and licks and love, Dakota

A little background…Part I

I bet you are wondering how I met my Mom and Dad, if you’re not, you should be!!

“It was a dark and stormy night….” WAIT!!! Wrong dog!! That would be the beginning of Snoopy’s story, not mine!

Ok here is the story as my Mom told me. Well maybe not exactly as she told me cause she talks too much so I will try to condense it for you.

When my Mom was a little girl she was obsessed with Lassie (yep Lassie was a COLLIE, NOT a Sheltie, but stay with me on this one). She LOVED LASSIE! So much so in fact that when she used to watch the show you know how at the end Lassie raises his paw? Well, my Mom used to do the SAME THING right back at Lassie! (she was kinda nuts even then. She was only 5 yrs old so we will cut her some slack.)

Mom used to play with some kids across the street who had what Mom thought in her non-developed 5 yr old mind was a Collie because it looked JUST LIKE LASSIE! She admitted that she really only played with the kids cause she loved their dog (and because their family used to buy her ice cream when the ice cream man came, but that’s a story for a  third blog (bite your tongue!) another day.

Their dog was actually a SHELTIE!!  He was small but he was a Lassie look-alike , his  name was “Dandy”….and in my Mom’s world, he WAS!

To be continued….

I have some noise to make.

Barks and licks, Dakota