Friends of Falmouth Dogs - Celebrating 20 Years in 2010.
 
Join our mailing list Save The Mutts
View our Alumni Photo Gallery
 

Current hours
Sunday: 3:00-5:00
Monday and Thursday:
10:00-12:00 & 4:00-6:00
Tues.,Wed.,Fri., & Sat.:
10:00-12:00

location
Animal Control Center
150 Blacksmith Shop Rd.
Falmouth, MA

Send mail to:
P.O. Box 438
Falmouth, MA 02541

phone number
508-548-7742
 

Follow us on Facebook

RSS Web Feed

Links To Other Sites

 
Photo of area around the Friends of Falmouth Dogs/Animal Control building.
Home Our Dogs About Us Adopt a Dog Directions How to Help FFD Items Navigation Bar

Recent Falmouth Enterprise Columns


July 14, 2017
July 7, 2017
June 30, 2017
June 23, 2017

June 16, 2017
June 9, 2017
June 2, 2017
May 26, 2017

 

Falmouth Enterprise Archived Column

By Pamela Alden Kokmeyer

Friday, July 14, 2017

The truth is that when you look like a tough guy, you have to work extra hard to prove you're really a sweetie. Sometimes the world just sees the outside and doesn't care about the rest.

There are lots of examples of things that look tough on the outside but inside are deceptively soft.

Like Rosey Grier, former professional football player (6'5" and 284 pounds!), whose hobby is crocheting. And who wrote a book on needlepoint. Really.

Like prickly pears, which look like medieval weapons on the outside but whose fruit inside is sweet and succulent.

Like snails. They're just plain tough looking and ugly. And yet... And yet they're found on menus in fine restaurants everywhere.

Like manatees, which are scary to look at but are also known as "squishy-faced best friends" because of their gentleness and affinity for humans.

But our favorite example is Shorty, the dog with a tough-looking exterior and an extra sweet interior. This young (2 or 3 years old) mix of pitbull and rottweiler may look like a pugilist. His stocky build, short legs, thick neck, oversized head and muscled torso are the first things you see. But if you spend any amount of time with him, you will see a funny, goofy, playful, needy young dog. Everything he does, he does with full-on gusto. He puts his whole heart into it. He grabs onto every moment with both hands. Or he would if he had hands.

Make no mistake: Shorty is going to need work and training. Lots of it. But this diamond in the rough will be worth it. Shorty exhibits some fear when meeting new people, especially men, so he is undergoing an evaluation period to help with these fears. He will be available for a meet-and-greet after the evaluation process concludes. But in the meantime, you can call to get more information on him—we love talking about Shorty!

We are looking for an adult home (simply because of his strength and exuberance) with bully breed experience. We will also require his new home to get Shorty into formal training as part of the adoption.

And our dear George continues to thrive in a gentleness of existence. This 7-year-old German shepherd in foster care knows nothing but love, security, quiet routine and all that is good in the world. His foster family marvels at how quickly this former-dog-of-many-issues has made a full recovery to health and heartiness. Well, hearty wouldn't exactly describe him. He's too majestic for that. And like royalty, he accepts all that is bestowed upon him with grace and good humor. And his manners? They're impeccable. His ideal home will be an adult home where he can reign as the only dog and one where someone is home much of the time. We feel it's the least we can do for George.

* * *

As we suspected there would be, there was a dramatic uptick in strays at the shelter and even more calls to the shelter from frantic owners around the Fourth of July. Most of these dogs panicked after hearing fireworks and bolted from their yards. Of the four that arrived at the shelter, none were wearing ID tags. It was only through work and luck that they were reunited before having to spend a night at the shelter, away from family and home. Unfortunately, we learned that some of the other dogs never made it home. Again, we remind owners to be extra vigilant around holidays when dogs get stressed by changes in routine; always, always, always have an ID tag on your dog's collar; get your dog microchipped; and if your dog goes missing, call Animal Control, the police, and shelters not only in your town, but neighboring towns.

* * *

We have two fundraisers planned, so you might want to mark your calendars. On Saturday, July 22, we are participating in a yard sale at The Falmouth Enterprise offices on Depot Avenue (across from the bus station). The yard sale will run from 9 AM to 1 PM.

On Saturday, September 16, we will hold our 4th annual Antiques Appraisal event at Atria Woodbriar Place on Gifford Street, with Michael Kasparian serving as the appraiser.

* * *

We are at the shelter Monday through Saturday from 10 AM to noon; Sunday from 3 to 5 PM; and Monday and Thursday afternoons from 4 to 6.

 

Back to the top.

 
 
 

Falmouth Enterprise Archived Column

By Pamela Alden Kokmeyer

Friday, July 7, 2017

The heart of a champion. Secretariat had it. And George does, too. It takes the heart of a champion to not just meet challenges, but to surmount them. To claim victory. To take the top prize.

* * *

Considered the best racing Thoroughbred of all time, with still-unbroken track records at the Kentucky Derby and the Belmont Stakes, Secretariat had a few real advantages to account for his blistering speed. For one thing, his heart was almost three times the size of a normal Thoroughbred's heart. (His was 22 pounds; the average is 7 ½ to 8 pounds.) Of course, well-developed lungs and large nostrils also help. Certainly helped Secretariat.

But with George, we are speaking both physically and metaphorically. George has come through his treatment for heartworm as the victor. The vet has cleared George medically: his lungs and heart are clear and healthy. But George has also come out the winner in other ways. The deck was stacked against this lovely 7-year-old German shepherd. His body was dealing with several ailments, but his spirit was also struggling to survive the emotional neglect he must have known before he arrived on our doorstep.

But you should see him now. After a few months of excellent vet care; a balanced diet; a few baths; and—most of all—a loving, nurturing foster home, this shepherd is a new creature. Every day now he wakes to a life full of joy, friends, food (and homemade snacks), clean beds, strolls and naps. Doesn't get much better than that.

Yes, this boy certainly has heart. He's also got exquisite house manners, a forgiving nature, and a gentle temperament. George has minor surgery scheduled for July 11. Following that, we will begin making arrangements for meet-and-greets with potential new families.

We are looking for a home where someone is around a lot of the time, and we think George should be the star of that home.

The accompanying photo shows how Shorty celebrated the 4th: all dressed up. Shorty's social calendar is just about as hot as the weather. In addition to regular field trips around town, visits to ponds, and time splashing in the pools at the shelter (please visit our Facebook page for the video), Shorty has become the star of stage, screen and print. Well, at least he's become the star of volunteers' cellphone cameras.

This 2-plus-year-old pitbull/Rottweiler mix loves life. He loves people. And Shorty has just begun attending day care! Two times a week! Who knew how much he enjoyed chasing around the play yard with big dogs, small dogs and all the in-between dogs. Well, Shorty probably knew but we didn't. We'll keep you posted on all the new friends he's making. And like proud parents, we preened when the trainer saw just how smart he was and how quickly he followed her commands.

Because of Shorty's sheer strength, the ideal home will be one with no small children, and an owner who can demonstrate strong leadership and has bully breed experience. We also will make getting Shorty into formal training a prerequisite for adoption.

* * *

We all know that walking our dogs in hot weather is fraught with considerations and calculations. Simply fraught. But we mostly just think of temperature and humidity. We assume those are the salient points. But are they? Well, no. It's not just the temperature and humidity that can be a problem. How about the pavement your dog walks on? Ask yourself: would I walk barefoot on this asphalt on a hot day? If you're not sure, here's a little test. Place your hands or bare feet on the pavement and hold them there for about 7 seconds. If it's uncomfortable for you, it's uncomfortable—and potentially dangerous—for your dog. And even if you wait until the late afternoon or for the sun to set to take your pet for a walk, keep in mind that asphalt holds the heat.

If you're lucky enough to live near a body of water, well, you're lucky. And so's your dog. Even non-swimming dogs will generally enjoy walking in the coolness of the water's edge.

To give your dog the exercise and mental stimulation it needs on very hot days, you may need to adjust your schedule temporarily. Early morning and early evening walks may be just what the doctor ordered!

* * *

We are at the shelter seven days a week: Monday through Saturday from 10 AM to noon; Sunday from 3 to 5 PM; and Monday and Thursday afternoons from 4 to 6.

Back to the top.

 
 
 

Falmouth Enterprise Archived Column

By Pamela Alden Kokmeyer

Friday, June 30, 2017

Cicero said if you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need. He's right. Well, almost right. To that we would add a dog. And maybe a box of chocolates. Very good chocolates. There, now that's really all you need.

* * *

Well, the world is just full of little surprises, isn't it. Who knew that Shorty liked to swim? Or even could swim. Built less like Michael Phelps and more like Mike Tyson, Shorty wouldn't have been our first choice for water sports. But on recent field trips, volunteers decided to give Shorty a nice cool surprise.

Tethered to a long leash, he got his first taste of "water paws" and liked it so much, he just threw himself into the water and swam and swam and swam. And then he swam some more. We're talking real dog-paddling here, not just walking along the bottom. After a nice toweling off and a ride back to the shelter, Shorty was clearly full of joy. He happily went into his kennel and curled up on his bed.

Shorty is a delightful mix of pitbull and Rottweiler: a pitweiler? He's between 2 and 3 years old, very smart, very strong and pretty opinionated. A stocky body on shortish legs, he's one of a kind. Shorty will need firm leadership and because he likes to learn new things, training will be fun. And training will be necessary. An adult home (because of his strength) and bully breed experience will make the ideal home for our Shorty.

And now we'll gush for a few moments about our dear George, the 7-year-old German shepherd in foster care. This is one amazing dog who has met several medical obstacles and has come out the winner. He's almost like a real live Disney movie. George arrived at the shelter in very tough shape. We'll spare you the details, but—trust us—he was not a pretty sight. As soon as possible, he went into foster care while he underwent treatment for heartworm, just one of several medical issues.

Well, that was then and this is now. Now, because of the excellent care he is receiving in his foster home and top-notch veterinary care, George looks like a champion. Like a new creature. He's healthy, well-nourished, happy, sweet, and still a perfect gentleman...we could go on.

George is a celebrity in his neighborhood and politely greets all and sundry on his walks. Now he is almost ready for his next step: a permanent home. We think a home similar to his foster home will help ease any transition: a quiet, adult home with someone home a lot, regular walks, playtime, good food (and a nice view would not be amiss). Although he seems to like the dogs he meets on his walks, we think he deserves to be the star in the family. If you'd like to consider adding George to your life, give us a call and we will give you more information.

You may have noticed Rose by her absence. Happily, this 9-year-old yellow Lab has begun life in her new home. This gal was immensely popular, but alas, we couldn't divide her, so only one family could be chosen. But we encourage those of you still interested in adopting a dog to keep checking our website for immediate updates.

* * *

Every year, July 4 rolls around. And every year, shelters report an increase in the number of dogs that either end up at the shelter or are reported missing. See the connection? For many dogs, the sound of fireworks sends them into a panic and even normally placid dogs may bolt through a door or over a fence. Don't let your dog become a statistic.

Here are some tips from a favorite online pet resource (PetPlace@mails.petplace.com):

Remain indoors. Keep your pet inside during the scheduled fireworks display. During the big fireworks celebration, someone should remain at home with the dog. When going out for walks, always keep your dog on a leash.

Keep your pet calm. Make your dog feel safe. Give him easy access to his safe place or his crate. Comfort your dog by doing the things he loves: hug, pet or brush your dog, speak in a soothing voice, and give your dog his favorite treat. Whenever possible, stay with him, so he doesn't feel alone.

Draw attention away from the noise. Try to muffle the noise by keeping windows and doors closed and play music or turn on the TV.

Act normal. Your dog will follow your example, so go about your normal routine and make sure to spend time playing and interacting with your dog. Act upbeat and calm to reinforce that your dog has no reason to be afraid.

Make sure your pet's collar has an ID tag. This is pretty obvious but worth mentioning anyway. If, even after all you have done to lessen your dog's fear, the dog bolts, at least it will be wearing an ID, so it can be reunited with you sooner rather than later.

* * *

We are at the shelter Monday through Saturday from 10 AM to noon; Sunday from 3 to 5 PM; and Monday and Thursday afternoons from 4 to 6.

Back to the top.

 
 
 

Falmouth Enterprise Archived Column

By Pamela Alden Kokmeyer

Friday, June 23, 2017

It is often said that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. We would agree. Take, for example, peanut butter and chocolate.

Abbott and Costello.

Rock & roll.

Lady and the Tramp.

Xylem and phloem.

Shorty.

Shorty? Yes, Shorty, who is our quirky, unusual, delightful combination of parts that is a force unto himself. This young (2 or 3 years old?) guy is most likely a mix of Rottweiler and pit bull. But how it comes together in him results in a unique creation. Shorty is stocky, sturdy and short and has the rich colorings of the rottie. He adores human companionship and will often plant himself on your foot and lean against your leg while he surveys the world in front of him. Then he might roll on his back for a belly rub.

Shorty is very smart and seems to enjoy training, either for food rewards or for an enthusiastic "atta boy." Shorty is very strong and somewhat prey-driven (watch out, rabbits and squirrels), so he will need a firm, strong owner. And training. Lots of training. An adult home, preferably with bully breed experience, is what he needs and what we are hoping for. Because of his strength, only homes without children will be considered.

Rose's birthday is Tuesday. She will turn 9. But apparently she couldn't wait the extra few days to celebrate. As seen in the accompanying photo, she's already started. Helping her celebrate was Uptown Dog, which treated her to blueberry frozen doggy yogurt on a recent visit. (Her diet has since started.) Rose is an active yellow Lab. She is exceedingly sweet and a bit heavy, as Labs are wont to be. She loves walks, car rides, office time, and of course, blueberry frozen doggy yogurt.

Don't let her age fool you. This gal loves exercise. But of everything she loves, she loves attention most of all, so we are looking for a home where someone is around much of the time. She loves people so much that she will often bring you presents in her mouth; she'll grab whatever is handy. Because of her size and exuberance, an adult home or one with older children would be best.

Our pal George continues to thrive in his foster home. This 7-year-old German shepherd is nearing the conclusion of his treatment for heartworm, which is no day in the park. But George accepts all the medicine and restrictions with grace and equanimity. He is truly a gentleman. His foster family might soon run out of adjectives to describe his awesomeness.

He has just begun regular—but limited—walks in the neighborhood, where he is a pretty popular guy. And once you meet him, you'll understand why. Soon he will be undergoing a little, ahem, cosmetic surgery to make him even more gorgeous. Seriously though, this is a very handsome shepherd with exquisite manners. He will soon be looking for his forever home. The ideal home will be tranquil and serene but with regular walks and visits and company. George loves company.

* * *

We always love learning fun factoids about dogs, especially vis--vis people. We just learned about a Japanese study published in Behavioral Processes a few years ago that proved that dogs raise their eyebrows when they are greeted by their owners. Especially the left eyebrow. Apparently, the researchers used a high-speed camera to capture and analyze the facial movements of the test dogs, both when seeing their owners and seeing strangers. The dogs' facial movements were much more subtle when greeted by a stranger.

They went on to explain the scientific reasons and ramifications but we don't really care about all that stuff. All we care about is that we've learned a new way to communicate with our dogs. Ultimately, what the experts suggest is that the more animated your face is when greeting your pup, the more loved they feel. And if you can raise just your left eyebrow, well, your dog will feel really cherished. Isn't that fun to know?

* * *

We are at the shelter Monday through Saturday from 10 AM to noon; Sunday from 3 to 5 PM; and Monday and Thursday afternoons from 4 to 6.

 

Back to the top.

 
 
 

Falmouth Enterprise Archived Column

By Pamela Alden Kokmeyer

Friday, June 16, 2017

Sometimes we think that pit bulls and even pit bull mixes are the Boo Radleys of the canine world. Misunderstood, sometimes isolated, and often feared. But most people who really know pit bulls and pit mixes are quick to debunk the myths, legends and fears.

And Shorty would like the chance to do a little debunking of his own. This 2-plus-year-old mix of pit bull and Rottweiler has a creative build, a quirky nature, and a very special appeal. He carries his large head atop his muscular body atop his short legs. He's a hoot.

Shorty adores people and craves affection and attention. He is very smart and, best of all, he wants to learn and he wants to please. He responds well and quickly to praise and correction. Although he loves his treats—and his dinners, and more treats—he also craves hearing "Good boy, Shorty" when he understands what you've asked of him and accomplishes it.

Because he is so strong (and smart), Shorty will need consistent training starting from day one. But also because he is so strong, and a bit willful, he needs an adult home without children. That family should also be active and have bully breed experience.

We will try to resist the urge to be trite and say that a Rose by any other name would smell as sweet. But she does. Even if her name were Petunia or Iris or Dahlia, she would be as sweet.

Rose is a 9-year-old yellow English Lab. We stress the English in her breed because they are typically a shorter, stockier breed than the American Lab. And while Rose does need to watch her weight (well, let's be honest here: we need to watch her weight for her), she will never be svelte.

Rose is extraordinarily sweet and lovely and lively. She needs lots of exercise and she especially needs a home where someone is around much of the time. Rose craves human companionship and loves being the center of attention. Can anyone spell D-I-V-A?

We just received the most wonderful report from the family fostering George through his heartworm treatment: George, the 7-year-old German shepherd, aced his recent checkup. His heart and lungs sound good, according to the vet. And his formerly dry, coarse, unpretty coat is becoming soft and touchable.

He is beginning to parade through the neighborhood and recently passed a gauntlet of barking dogs, which left him unfazed (his foster family described it as "unimpressed") until he passed another German shepherd. This dog seemed to catch his attention. Kindred spirit? Long-lost cousin? None of this would have been possible without superb veterinary care and even "superber" love in a family. That family says it best: "Love is the best healer of all."

We will keep you posted as he nears ready-for-adoption status.

* * *

Last week we alerted you to the dangers to pets of some flowers commonly found in the yard. This week we want to alert you to even more common dangers found in the yard: mulch, fertilizers and compost. We found these on the website of Pet Poison Helpline, (24/7 Animal Poison Control Center, 855-764-7661), and are only giving a summary here. We recommend that you do your own research, for your pet's sake.

Cocoa bean mulch comprises the hulls or shells of the cocoa bean, which are byproducts of chocolate production. Dogs may be attracted by the chocolate scent and try to eat them. Like chocolate itself, the hulls can contain theobromine and caffeine, both of which can be toxic to dogs. Ingesting large amounts can result in vomiting, diarrhea, abnormal heart rhythm, seizures and even death.

According to the helpline, most fertilizers are safe for dogs. But those that contain blood meal, bone meal, feather meal and iron may be extremely tempting to dogs and can be dangerous in large amounts. They may become compacted in the stomach and obstruct the gastrointestinal tract, cause pancreatitis and even cause iron poisoning. It goes without saying that pesticides and insecticides can be life-threatening.

And even compost, which we think of as organic, friendly and safe, can be dangerous to dogs. The Pet Poison Helpline points out that as organic matter decomposes, molds can grow, some of which produce toxins. In as little as 30 minutes after ingestion, a dog can be affected. Symptoms include panting, agitation, drooling, vomiting, tremors and seizures. Prompt veterinary attention is required.

So, go out and enjoy your garden, but be a savvy gardener.

* * *

We are at the shelter seven days a week: Monday through Saturday from 10 AM to noon; Sunday from 3 to 5 PM; and Monday and Thursday afternoons from 4 to 6.

 

Back to the top.

 
 
 

Falmouth Enterprise Archived Column

By Pamela Alden Kokmeyer

Friday, June 9, 2017

Vivien Leigh, arguably one of the most beautiful women of her generation, was blessed with many things. In addition to beauty, she possessed refinement, exquisite taste, intelligence, talent, and poise. But she had a sore spot—an Achilles' heel, so to speak. Her hands. They were disproportionately large in comparison to the rest of her. She was always terribly self-conscious about them and had a large personal wardrobe of gloves to camouflage them.

Shorty is pretty much like Vivien Leigh. Except that he's not a woman, he's not British, he's not an actor, and he doesn't own even one pair of gloves. But Shorty has a head that's a bit disproportionately big for his body. Fortunately, he's not self-conscious about that.

Shorty is a young mix of pitbull and rottweiler. His muscular body sits atop short, stocky legs, and his black and brown coloring is beautiful. Shorty is extremely affectionate and loves human attention. And belly rubs? Pure bliss. He has nice leash manners except when he sees a rabbit. Or a squirrel. Or probably anything small and swift darting near him. Then he turns his attention and all his power into chasing that hapless little creature. And this guy has formidable strength. Shorty is full of confidence, so he will need a family that also is full of confidence and can offer the leadership he needs. The ideal family will have lots of experience with bully breeds. Because of his strength, we are looking for a home without children. Shorty is smart and capable of learning lots of things.

By the time you read this, we will have a new resident at the shelter. Rosie is a 9-year-old yellow Lab. Don't let the age deceive you. This super-friendly girl acts like a much younger dog. She, too, loves human attention. We are still getting to know her but we already know an important thing about her: she is ber sweet.

George continues to improve while undergoing his heartworm treatment. Thankfully, that treatment, which isn't pleasant, is being administered while he is safe, comfortable and loved in a foster home.

George is a 7-year-old German shepherd. We are pretty sure that somewhere in his lineage, he has superb DNA, because he's a superb kind of guy.

His foster family continues to learn fabulous things about him. For instance, he doesn't beg at the table when the family is eating. And that's a very big deal for a dog that has known real hunger. You see, heartworm is only one of the issues George arrived with. Among other things, he arrived very much underweight with a coarse, dry coat. We don't even know the last time he had been fed a regular diet. And while food was very important to him at the shelter, he has since learned that he will always have access to fresh, healthy food. So now, when the family eats, he often wanders into another room to relax. He clearly knows his manners. We'll keep you posted on his progress.

* * *

They look demure and sweet and their perfume is coveted by old maiden aunts everywhere. But they have their dark side. We're referring to lily of the valley. These flowers contain cardiac glycosides, which, according to the University of California at Davis, are sugars that affect how the cardiac muscle contracts. Dogs who eat any part of the plant could be at risk for vomiting, diarrhea, decreased heart rate, heart rhythm abnormalities and even seizures.

And the lily of the valley is not alone. Other common garden flowers can be equally dangerous—among them, daffodil, tulip, hyacinth, rhododendron, cyclamen, chrysanthemum, and crocus. From heart problems to kidney issues to vision problems, these plants can prove very dangerous to pets. But perhaps most dangerous of all are lilies such as tiger, day, Asiatic, Easter and Japanese show lilies. Again according to UCDavis, "What makes lilies so toxic is unknown, but ingesting any part of the plant can cause complete kidney failure in 36-72 hours. First symptoms appear in a few hours and may include appetite suppression, lethargy and vomiting. Even small ingestions, such as the pollen, can be fatal."

Who knew? Now you do.

* * *

We can always use good-quality canned dog food. Adding a bit of canned food to the kibble makes mealtime extra fun for our "guests."

* * *

We are at the shelter Monday through Saturday from 10 AM to noon; Sunday from 3 to 5 PM; and Monday and Thursday afternoons from 4 to 6.

* * *

We are at the shelter Monday through Saturday from 10 AM to noon; Sunday from 3 to 5 PM; and Monday and Thursday afternoons from 4 to 6.

 
 

Back to the top.

 
 
 

Falmouth Enterprise Archived Column

By Pamela Alden Kokmeyer

Friday, June 2, 2017

Real men do wear pink. And real men do eat quiche, but that's not germane to this week's column, so let's just stick to the subject at hand, shall we? Returning to the issue of pink: George is a big, beautiful and brave German shepherd in foster care. And George's favorite nesting place in that foster home? A large, fluffy, frilly pink comforter. And he totally rocks the color. Of course, George has lots of favorite nesting places in his foster home, but the pink comforter is his very special favorite, we are told.

George is in foster care because he is being treated for heartworm. His foster family reports that he's doing well and improving day by day, but there have been some tough moments. Happily, just the other day, he began to play with a soft, stuffed bunny, so he must be feeling better.

(Please, please get your dog tested for heartworm annually and treated with a preventive. It's a terrible, painful, miserable and expensive disease to treat; it's fatal if left untreated; and it's totally preventable.)

We will keep you posted on George's progress. He still has to undergo further injections in his treatment, but when he is cleared for adoption, we will let you know. And, boy, will we all celebrate.

* * *

Just a reminder: almost weekly we get calls from people who need to rehome their dogs. The breeds, ages and requirements are varied, so if you're beginning your own search to add a dog to your family, we encourage you to stay in touch with us. Waiting in the wings just may be that "match made in Heaven."

* * *

Speaking of waiting in the wings, we have chosen a name for the delightfully quirky, one-of-a-kind piece that was donated to us a few weeks back. Created and donated by local artist Sue Beardsley, the little guy stands watch in our Memorial Garden. But it needed a name, and many of you submitted suggestions. We know, we know—get to the point, you say; which name was chosen? Drum roll here: Rusty. How perfectly appropriate for the bits and pieces of items that have outlived their first incarnations and have been combined and repurposed in one great piece of art. And as a matter of fact, the name Rusty was chosen by more than one reader, so T-shirts will be making their way to them. And thanks to all of you who took the time to respond. Please come down and meet Rusty. He's there all the time.

* * *

We continue to see strays come into the shelter regularly. Some have been there more than once. Many end up spending the night until their owners can claim them and this can be difficult for old dogs, young dogs, ill dogs, frightened dogs and dogs with sensitive natures. And it can be particularly tricky for out-of-town dogs whose family is visiting. If these dogs go missing, they are in unfamiliar territory, making it harder to locate them. A simple, inexpensive and foolproof ID tag can eliminate this. Please attach to your dog's collar an ID tag with your telephone/cellphone number where you can be reached at any time. If your dog is found by a Good Samaritan, you can be reunited quickly and without extra stress for both you and your dog. Personalized tags can be bought locally or ordered online.

* * *

Those of you who follow this column or visit our website may sometimes wonder how our alumni are doing in their new homes and new lives. And it's something the volunteers are always curious about. Over the years, we've had some dogs that have had dramatic impacts on all of us, either because they were with us so long or because their stories were so poignant. But dramatic or not, all the dogs that have gone through our program have been loved and are remembered.

We invite those of you who have adopted from us, even long ago, to send us a few lines about how your adopted dogs managed to change your (and their) lives. We would like to include some of those stories in this column and on our website from time to time. Rest assured, we will keep your confidentiality. But we—and, we think, our readers—will be interested to hear any updates. You may send your submissions to info@friendsoffalmouthdogs.org.

* * *

We still have loads of great tote bags in fun and happy and wonderful colors. The colors will satisfy the fashionistas out there; the utility will please the eco-minded. They are insulated, sturdy and only $5 each. And the purchase of each bag will help our program.

* * *

Oh, and we still can use good-quality canned dog food. We find that adding some canned dog food to their kibble helps with picky eaters, adds some fun to their meals and is also a good way to administer pills when needed. Grain-free canned food is always a good option.

* * *

We are at the shelter Monday through Saturday from 10 AM to noon; Sunday from 3 to 5 PM; and Monday and Thursday afternoons from 4 to 6.

 
 

Back to the top.

 
 
 

Falmouth Enterprise Archived Column

By Pamela Alden Kokmeyer

Friday, May 26, 2017

Montesquieu was a man of letters, a student of the law, a biting satirist, a prodigious traveler and a political philosopher. But when he wasn't running around lettering, lawyering, satirizing, traveling and philosophizing, he had a soft, sensitive side. In perhaps one of his best known and widely acclaimed works, "Persian Letters," Montesquieu wrote: "Friendship, that sweet bond of hearts which creates a gentleness of existence."

Pet owners know this sweet bond of hearts on a visceral level. And anyone who has ever provided a lap for a napping dog's head feels that gentleness of existence.

Fortunately, it goes both ways. Just ask George. Well, actually, you can't ask him right now because he's enjoying his gentleness of existence in a foster home even as we speak. Yes, George, the German shepherd with heartworm, has moved to a very special foster family. And by the time this column goes to press, he will have started treatment for the heartworm. The good news is that George has proven to be a perfect houseguest—he's respectful, loving, obedient, grateful, housebroken, and just plain fun. His foster family tells us that he is a remarkable dog. He came to visit a few days ago and already the transformation in his physical condition is impressive. We'll keep you posted on his progress and as he nears time for adoption, we'll encourage you to come down to get more information.

* * *

Recently, we've received several calls from people needing to re-home their dogs, including such breeds as Labs, beagles and the ever-popular "mix." Often, the specifics of these dogs aren't known until after this column goes to press, so we encourage you to call us from time to time and get updates.

* * *

We know the worst of the hot weather is still down the road a bit but the few warm days we had last week remind us to remind you to remind yourself and to remind others NOT to leave pets in cars, even "just for a moment while I run an errand." Cars heat rapidly, especially on sunny days, even with windows partially open. Dogs can suffer heat stroke in a very, very short time.

* * *

One of our go-to websites is PetPlace for information, education and fun factoids. And a recent entry confirmed what we knew: play is serious business.

According to the experts, play serves a very real purpose and can even serve as a dress rehearsal for the real life to come. Running, jumping, mouthing, chasing and wrestling are all part of play. And when done at the proper stages of life and in the proper environment, puppies learn appropriate behavior that can take them to adulthood. (Ideally, puppies that bite too hard quickly learn how to control themselves.) You could call it Emily Post for the doggy set.

We've all seen the play bow, when one dog signals its intention to another. And the play bow may be accompanied by an open mouth, pricked ears, barks and sometimes leaping about. These are signs easily read by other, properly socialized dogs. Much of this behavior is learned during the crucial early months of a puppy's life, first with its littermates and later with its friends.

But there is also a form of play that manifests in chewing behaviors: balls, bones, stuffed toys, shoes, remote controls, eyeglasses—you get the picture. And anyone who's raised a puppy knows all about that!

And those of you who have older dogs probably know that although the types of play may be modified, your dog still has the need and urge to play. In fact, experts tell us that domesticated dogs don't outgrow their need for play, but rather, remain in a sort of permanent puppyhood. Interestingly, and sadly, dogs that are stressed, unhappy or unhealthy do not play. A word to the observant dog owner: If your formerly happy, playful pet stops enjoying his stuffed animals or tennis balls or whatever, he or she may be telling you something and you may want to consider consulting your vet.

* * *

And speaking of play, as always, we encourage you to come down and play with our dogs. (How is that for a subtle hint?) We are open Monday through Saturday from 10 AM to noon; Sunday from 3 to 5 PM; and Monday and Thursday afternoons from 4 to 6.

 

Back to the top.

 
 

Falmouth Enterprise web site.

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
Home |  Our Dogs |  About Us |  Adopt a Dog |  Directions |  How to Help |  FFD Items |  Links

 
© 2005-2017, Friends of Falmouth Dogs. All rights reserved.
Site design and maintenance by Duck Web Design of Falmouth.