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Archive for July, 2011

I received this reminder in my inbox today and I wanted to share it with you:
 
ZOO GROOVES CONCERT – this Saturday!
Saturday, July 30 (also August 20)
5:30 p.m. – performances begin at 6:00 p.m.
 
Concert nights at the Zoo are perfect for families! Enjoy music by Norfolk’s own “School of Rock” in the Zoo event field. Concessions with your favorite summer foods and refreshments will be available for purchase until 8:00 p.m. Pack your blankets and lawn chairs to be entertained at this groovy event!
 
But…it’s not just about the music!
 
Zoo Grooves attendees will be able to submit name suggestions for the new Virginia Zoo Tiger mascot. Submissions from the last Zoo Grooves concert and this one will be the only names considered. The winning name will be announced at the final concert of the series on August 20.
 
Concert-goers will also have the opportunity to participate in a silent auction of original art by the Zoo’s animal residents. This event features art from Lisa the African elephant, Rimba the tapir, Schnitz the orangutan and others!
 
This partnership event FREE to the members of:
Virginia Zoo
Norfolk Botanical Garden
Nauticus
 
Membership cards and photo ID are required. General Admission applies to non-members.
 
For more information, visit our website or call (757)441-2374, ext. 253.

     I attended the first Zoo Grooves and really enjoyed it.  Since most people were sitting in the grass, listening to the band, the walkways were wide-open for viewing the animals.  Oddly, I didn’t think to bring my camera.  I’m sure I won’t forget tomorrow night!

     Meanwhile, in that same e-mail, there was this little bonus:

IT’S A BOY!

Adorable!

 
Meet our brand new bundle of joy. A Masai giraffe was born yesterday, July 28, at 4:20 p.m.  Mom and baby are doing very well, and can be viewed from windows looking into the Elephant and Giraffe Barn. He is approximately 6-feet tall and weighs a little over 150 pounds. 
 
The Zoo will announce a baby naming poll at a later date.

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     The thermometer is supposed to hit 98° tomorrow, so you know what that means:


Time to pop the pup into the pool!

     What’s that you say?  You don’t have a pool?  No problem!  It just so happens that the folks at Happy Tails Doggie Day Care on Granby Street do have a pool – and it’s designed for dogs. 

     Swim sessions range from $13 for a half day to $23 for a full day.  You can also choose a 30 minute Owner/Dog Swim Time for $15.

     The big pool is 17′ x 9′ and 4′ deep.  Life jackets are available for all sizes of dogs.

     Happy Tails is located next to Subway and across from Mi Hogar at 4136 Granby Street in Norfolk.  Contact them for complete details, including hours of operation and other services provided, by calling 757-233-2500, or visit their website via the link above.

    So go on and take the plunge – it’s a great way to beat the heat.  And swimming with your dog just may be the most fun you’ll have all summer!  ~~  Jen
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Photo:  Search and Rescue dog FloJo cools off after a training session in Florida.  Photo by Leif Skoogfors.  From the FEMA Photo Library, via Wikimedia Commons.

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     If you saw Keith Urban. perform at the Hampton Coliseum last night, you know how fully awesome he was.  If you missed it, you should be kicking yourself.  Enjoy these photo highlights from the show:


All photos by Jennifer Miele.

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     The one thing I love more than a book is a free book, and the one thing I love more than a free book is a good free book.  Today, I received a good free book in the mail – “Katie’s Crown: Love Lessons learned from a Golden Lab” by Patti Saffioti. 

     “Katie’s Crown” is a fleshed-out journal of the love shared between the Saffioti family and their Golden-Lab mix, Katie.  Katie wasn’t just a pet in the manner of a backyard prop or status symbol.  She was, in the words of Larry Saffioti, “an integral part of our family.”

     At the end of her life, Katie battled a terminal illness, and her family was faced with the reality of having to let her go, peacefully and humanely.  Patti hopes her family’s story will bring comfort to others who are walking the same path.

     Through her journaling, Patti also discovered the many lessons Katie taught her family members about God’s love for us and how He wants us to conduct ourselves in life. 

     I read “Katie’s Crown” soon after it arrived and enjoyed the book.  Katie will remind many people of their own pets – she wasn’t perfect, but she was pretty darn close.  The ending will have you reaching for the Kleenex.  I found Patti’s account of Katie’s passing very touching.  She captured the heartbreaking moments of a pet’s final visit to its doctor, in a way that many pet owners will relate to.

     You can order a copy of “Katie’s Crown” here or by visiting the website Katie’s Crown.  You can also participate on the website’s forum by sharing photos and memories of your own pets.
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     Book jacket design by Isaac Publishing, Inc. 

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When choosing a final resting place, some people have a tough decision to make.  The process might go something like this:

“Should I be buried with one of my four husbands or will that make people think I didn’t love them all equally?

“Maybe I should be buried between my parents, since I was their only child.

“Of course, there will need to be enough room for my only child to be buried next to me, assuming his harpy of a wife doesn’t for some reason insist he be buried with her.  That harpy.

“Now I’ll just have to disinter mother from her grave next to her mother in Poughkeepsie, move dad’s second wife to a plot in Timbuktu, put mom in stepmother’s grave, leaving two spots between them for Junior and me, then order a new family headstone for all of us.  Simple.”

Actually, it just got more complicated because it turns out that some people are choosing to be buried in  —  wait for it  —  a Pet Cemetery.  According to news reports, the Hartsdale Pet Cemetery in New York was founded by a veterinarian in 1896, making it America’s oldest known pet burial grounds.  Since the 1920s, however, people have been buried there as well, so long as they are cremated first. 

In an interview, Hartsdale’s director Edward Martin, Jr. said that about seven or eight people are interred with their pets each year, although requests for the service have gone up.  Martin believes that as many as 700 people are buried with their pets in Hartsdale alone.  For now, the practice has been put on hold as state regulators review the situation.

Locally, Garden of the Pines Pet Cemetery has been handling pet’s remains since 1957.  Though they don’t offer to inter your cremains with your pet, they do provide a peaceful location to visit with your deceased furry family members in a respectful environment.  Information about their Pre-Need Program is available online.

If you choose Hartsdale for your final resting place alongside KittyKitty BangBang and Bark Gable, you’ll still have one more decision to make:  burial under the cool shade trees or out in the full, warm sun.
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Information for this article was found in DVM Newsmagazine, July 2011, p. 45.
Photo:  Clonmacnoise Abbey cemetery (Ireland) by Jennifer Miele.

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We’ve got new pet packs from VPI – and they’re chock-full of cool stuff:

  • An “In case of emergency” phone decal
  • A “Pets Inside” window decal (to alert first responders)
  • “First Aid for Your Pet” booklet
  • “Preventing Pet Poisoning Emergencies” booklet
  • “New Pet Owner” booklet
  • and one of the neatest things I’ve seen in a long time – the New Cat/New Dog Hintbooks.

Be sure to claim your Pet Pack when you bring your new pet in for its first examination with us.  (Quantities are limited.)

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     Weather experts warn that the extreme high temperatures and humidity we’ve been experiencing will continue over the weekend.

     You may have noticed that stepping outside is like opening the door to a blast furnace.  And according to the weather report at WVEC Channel 13, Friday’s temperature will feel like 110° Fahrenheit.  Now imagine living outdoors wearing a fur coat all day – that’s what it’s like for our pets.

     Please keep pets indoors and provide fans or air conditioning during these days of extreme heat and humidity.  Provide cool water, as well.  Pets should not be exercised outdoors and bathroom break time should be limited, if possible. 

     Remember, pug-nosed dogs such as Pekingese, Lhasa Apsos, Chinese Pugs, and Boston Terriers (to name a few) have greater difficulty cooling the air they breathe in, due to a shortened snout.  For this reason, they are very susceptible to heat stroke.

     To learn more about the signs of heat stroke or heat stress in pets, see our blog post here.

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