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The truth about the breed

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The Best of KB-L for 2006


December 2006


Education is one of the items in the KBF's mandate and we hear so little about what positive education can be done. The ads in the newspapers and talking to people at pet stores about puppy mills are all helpful but I think if we want to get to the root of the problem, we have to start teaching the children in the schools - not only respect for themselves, their classmates and teachers but also the other animate things in their lives.


I am hoping that by telling people what Susan Field does in the classroom, our web site visitors will come up with other positive ideas to educate the general public.

Lynn Carrier
Edmonton, AB
Foundation volunteer


From: Susan F. Field"
Subject: Re: [KBL] "Pet Store"/ Education
Date: Wed, 27 Dec 2006 11:32:33 EST

Hello to All:

Well, the messages on the pet Store, really got me thinking. [...] Here are [...] my thoughts this morning [about] the Pet Store [problem], the Puppy Mills[and the Foundation’s] Rescue [work].

[There is much to say ablout] awakening others and educating others to the plight of our animal species. And [...] what can we do on a personal level. It is so helpful for me to read what so many to you are doing. Bless you.

Here's something that I do as a teacher. I now teach college courses in Humanities, English, and a course on creative process. In Humanities and, frankly, in all my courses, [I teach] "Insight Workshops" on the interspecies bond. And all of you know there is a plethora wonderful poetry and literature about this and many of you write your own narratives about real experiences.  [...]This kind of topical writing is used as catalysts and springboards for student writing. Many students become very interested in going further. Often when it comes time for my required "Independent Learning Pursuit Project".many choose to delve into Animal Rescue, The Puppy Mill, etc. For instance, students might use their creativity and humanity to make CD documentaries using visual footage, music, and poetry (and often the poetry/writing is original and sometimes even the music and lyrics ). The student must present the project to the class; and amazing awakening and discussion ensues.

When I taught Junior High and High School, I noted that units on animals interested almost EVERYONE in class --even in the hardest of classes. Some of the so-called "worst students" did extensive research on Rescue, etc. with genuine fervor. Some went to the local animal shelter to gain info. I discovered that at our local Animal Shelter there is a group of young people who get together each month there to share stories about animals. Honestly, I feel that there should be required units on the plight of animal in our schools. Many young people begin to become involved in taking responsibility to do something; and there are so many ways to do so. And how desperately our young people need to feel empowered to help our world.

I now would like some of my college students to delve into this website...It is educational; it is inspirational...It enlightens and teaches about animal advocacy through so many ways.

And to all: Your sharing real rescue experiences through writing so genuine, so sincere, so heartfelt; now to me that is truly educational!

Well, here is an story; I thought I would share [with all of you.] This is a story/legend from the Eskimo oral tradition dating back to the Pre-Columbian era. [It] is fascinating to receive affirmation about [the] inter-species bond.

Magic Words (after Nalungiaq)

In the very earliest time,
when both people and animals lived on earth,
a person could become an animal if he wanted to
and an animal could become a human being.
Sometimes they were people
and sometimes animals
and there was no difference.
All spoke the same language.
That was the time when words were like magic.
The human mind had mysterious powers.
A word spoken by chance
might have strange consequences.
It would suddenly come alive
and what people wanted to happen could happen--
all you had to do is say it.
Nobody could explain this:
That's the way it was.

Pearson Custom Publishing, 2003

Thanks to this Foundation and to all of you humans and canines.
To Life,

Susan Field
and Somer Pride

November 2006



The Best of KBL for November 2006 was Rita Lockwood's request for help because her Kerry can open the fridge door. That has been the topic of conversation many a night at our house - "it's a good thing the dogs don't have thumbs and can't open the fridge door". I guess they forgot to tell Quinn that he doesn't have thumbs and shouldn't be able to do that.


I can just see all of our darling Kerries begging Quinn to teach them how to do it. I am absolutely positive that he is their collective hero.
Lynn Carrier
Edmonton, AB
Foundation volunteer


From: R Lockwood <ritasway2@YAHOO.COM>
Subject: [KBL] Quinn vs the refrigerator
Date: Sat, 25 Nov 2006 14:55:33 -0800

While we are close to the subject of "what else will these Kerries do?" I'd like to raise a question. Does your Kerry open the refrigerator?

Because Quinn does, and it's not good for his health in general, his waistline in particular, or my frustration level. So far he and his buddy have stolen and eaten two almost full quarts of yogurt, 4 patties of hamburger mix, 1 piece of chicken, 2 cheese sticks... Since other people occasionally get food from the fridge, that's all I can be certain he is responsible for, unless we count the chocolate he searched out and found.

Miss Livvy does not like it when breakfast is delayed because he has eaten her favorite part. Junior doesn't mind, because he and Quinn often share. I don't like it for several reasons, not least is that I prefer knowing that my food hasn't been dog licked as he may have checked flavors prior to making a decision.

I got a fairly heavy magnet to secure the refrigerator door, it works when we work it, but occasionally someone forgets to replace it (it's hard to remember to lock the refrigerator.)

A year and a half old, Quinn is lovable, smart, happy, eager to get along, and plays well with others. This amazing little creature was rescued from Shelbina, but doesn't seem to know the meaning of fear. He does have a problem with selective deafness. We dropped out of obedience class because he has a very short attention span, and I had too much going on at the time. I didn't want to continue trying to teach him until I felt I had enough time and energy to enforce what I was teaching. I prefer that a Kerry not think a command is a suggestion. We will be going back to class, meantime, - - - How do you keep your Kerry out of the fridge?

Rita Lockwood Portland OR

October 2006



Mac MacAlister explains the limitations of AKC registrations to Dianne, who's friend is interested in a purebred dog..



From: L M B MacAlister <lmb.macalister@VERIZON.NET>
Reply-To: L M B MacAlister <lmb.macalister@VERIZON.NET>
Subject: Re: [KBL] AKC
Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2006 23:45:01 -0500

Hi, Dianne--

There are several things that you and your friend should be aware of. First, an AKC registration does not indicate any guarantee that the puppy will grow up to be true to size range. No registry can guarantee that a puppy will grow up to be within the acceptable parameters to show. In fact, most registries will allow inbred litters to be registered, as long as their purebred status can be demonstrated to the registry's standards. So all your friends can do to guarantee their puppy will grow up to be the correct size and shape is to check the size of the sire and dam, and ask the breeder about any genetic tendencies toward oversize, undersize, or other potential problems. And then get references that can vouch for the quality, honesty, and responsibility of the breeder. Registries don't give polygraph tests, either, although some breed clubs keep databases of breeders and their ratings.

A pedigree isn't proof that the dog will be true to form, either, no matter what registry the breeder uses. I had a Sheltie for a number of years who was breathtakingly beautiful, and who had a pedigree that contained many, many champions. But she was nearly 3X bigger (size and weight--she wasn't fat) than show standards for a Sheltie bitch. I have a friend with a German Shepherd whose pedigree (AKC, again) is astounding, with European and US champions galore, but who is crippled with hip dysplasia at 6 years. Registries don't certify things like that.

The issue of which registry is another matter. You didn't post your location, or that of your friend, which would be helpful in this issue. A registration with American Kennel Club (AKC), United Kennel Club (UKC), or Canadian Kennel Club (CKC) will at least demonstrate that the dog is purebred and has a clear pedigree. Most other registries, except those of specific breed clubs that aren't affiliated with the AKC, only really certify that the owner had enough money to send in a check with each pup registered. And unfortunately, CKC can stand for Canadian Kennel Club or Continental Kennel Club. The Canadian club is reputable. The Continental Kennel Club is pretty much a registry that caters to mass-breeders (frequent litters, many breeds), mostly who are in the Southeastern US. They also recommend designer dog breeders.

My recommendation would be for your friend to contact the breeder club for the Miniature Dachshund, look for a registered breeder, and go from there.

Good luck,

L M B MacAlister
Argyle, Texas

September 2006



The AKC made a "deal" with Petland to register puppy mill puppies sold through their stores. The outcry from the responsible dog owners was enormous. The AKC subsequently cancelled their agreement with Petland. This month's Best of KB-L post by Tracey Fulmer explains the reasons for the outcry of the dog community against the AKC-Petland "deal".



From: Tracey Fulmer <t_fulmer@YAHOO.COM>
Reply-To: Tracey Fulmer <t_fulmer@YAHOO.COM>
Subject: [KBL] More thoughts on AKC/Petland
Date: Thu, 21 Sep 2006 14:24:06 -0700

So it's clear the AKC has always been behind the scenes of the pet store trade, and certainly the BYB (back yard breeders) business, since that's where their revenues have historically come from. Just because that's how they've always run their business doesn't make it right. And it certainly isn't right for an organization claiming to be the "the dog's champion". In fact, it's just plain WRONG. Their thinking regarding Petland is a huge mistake, but that's clearly the decision the AKC made when they approved their strategic plan.

They're now executing that plan to woo back the puppy millers and pet stores. They've been a back-page premium advertiser in Kennel Spotlight magazine, the puppy mill trade rag published by the largest dog auction house, and a Platinum Sponsor of a miller trade organization. They've allowed anybody with an AKC registered dog to advertise litters on their own web site, and many of these advertisers are known puppy millers with no ethical breeding programs. And now Petland. But we should have all seen this coming when that High Volume Breeder/puppy mill report was published. The Petland deal just brought their plan out from under the covers, where I'm sure they would prefer it stay. What's next -- settng up a puppy factory in Missouri, in conjunction with Hunte and Petland, to spit out AKC-branded pups?

Their strategy: keep driving demand for purebreds, without a care about where the dogs come from or where they land (e.g., in shelters), while pretending to perform inspections, in an effort to drive revenues and recoup their old market position. Their mission isn't at all in the best interest of the dogs, and it never was. It's in the best interest of the purebred dog business, which the hobby breeders have never been in. The hobby breeders are simply the marketing arm of the AKC -- they use the dog shows on TV to portray a quality image that spurs demand of purebred pups (sold by pet stores and BYBs and registered by the AKC and others). Think about how many puppy buyers, now told that their dog is registered by the premium registry -- the AKC -- will decide to breed their premium dog? No impact on pet overpopulation? I beg to differ.

What the AKC's strategic planners and board of directors didn't factor in to the revenue equation is that awareness of puppy mill horrors and the pet overpopulation problem is gaining momentum. The internet and TV media are bringing this to light with gruesome pictures and facts. While some try to dismiss this as propaganda, unfortunately it isn't and we all know it. Many of our mill rescues are AKC registered, including those from Shelbina sold by one of the most notorious and largest pet store suppliers of Kerries and other breeds. Surely this mill with over 800 dogs was inspected by the AKC. How did they miss the bright red orbs where eyes were supposed to be, Shelby's gaping hole, oozing green infections and eyes matted shut? Is this the AKC version of quality, integrity and leadership?

So while their registrations and revenues may see some rebound over the next few years, as more and more people become aware of puppy mills and the pet overpopulation problem, the AKC's image will be damaged beyond repair before they know what hit them. There is no escaping those sickening puppy mill pictures, nor the hundred thousand homeless faces pleading for their lives everyday on, approximately 25% of them purebred. No amount of spin can cover that up. The Petland deal will be perceived as supporting and legitimizing the pet store business and their hideous puppy mill suppliers. I bet Petland is jumping for joy at the home run they scored. But just wait and see, those Petland boycotts will be going stronger than ever and I have no doubt who will win that war over the next few years. By deploying this strategy, the AKC is effectively putting itself out of business. Congratulations. If the AKC stood up for what is right, maybe purebred dogs wouldn't be as politically incorrect as they have become. And maybe AKC purebreds would be differentiated from the sham registry purebreds. Whatever happened to Roger Carras, the Westminster announcer who used to suggest we get a purebred then go to a shelter to adopt a second? That was the right thing to do.

Since the AKC has made the decision to take low road, that leaves the door open for an organization willing to become an ethical, top notch dog fancy. The American Border Collie Association ( has done just that, promoting their breed and educating the public, maintaining their registry (with DNA and required genetic testing), and managing events like agility and herding. And what about the UKC? How can they manage to do what's right, without economies of scale, while the AKC can't? Seems like a huge, missed, opportunity for the AKC -- the one organization with the perceived leadership and credibility (incorrectly perceived as it is) to make a difference in the lives of thousands of dogs in puppy mill hell. But they chose to take the opposite route, to support and legitimize that misery, to deal with the devil.
I would hope reputable breeders start to consider options other than the AKC, to strip away the image of quality the AKC gleans form those breeders working to improve their breeds rather than make a quick buck. In one post a while back, somebody wrote that the clubs ARE the AKC. Who with an ounce of conscience or love of dogs is willing to accept a trophy or ribbon knowing it was subsidized by one of their own breed suffering in caged hell?
Or perhaps the AKC still has an opportunity to change its chosen course.

Couldn't they be effective as a smaller organization, leveraging their leadership by standing for quality, integrity and education? Should they change their mission to allow consideration of this scenario? Would too many people lose their jobs? Are they just too greedy, trying to be everything to everybody but standing for nothing?
Couldn't they tighten up their finances and shed unnecessary expenses, e.g., the Museum of the Dog, their excessive payroll, their high rent headquarters in NY?

Couldn't they spend more on education of responsible dog ownership vs. promotion of the AKC itself. e.g., in Kennel Spotlight magazine or their "brand image" TV commercials?

Would the responsible fancy pay more to participate in the conformation, obedience, agility, herding, etc. events to make up for some portion of the loss in registration revenue?

Seems to me the AKC was at a crossroads and they chose the wrong path. Unless the AKC rethinks its plan, the Humane Society of the US and others will continue to pick up responsibility for the public education and rescue role, and it won't be in support of the purebred dog. That train has left the station and it's picking up steam: facts and pictures will always speak louder than slick advertising and transparent spin.

August 2006



Tracey Fulmer reports on the Kerry gathering in Lunenburg, MA.



From: Tracey Fulmer <t_fulmer@YAHOO.COM>
Subject: [KBL] Notes from the New England Kerry Gathering
Date: Thu, 24 Aug 2006 06:41:44 -0700

On Saturday, at Peggy and Gary Turner's lovely home in Lunenburg, MA, a group of 18 Kerries -- rescues and non rescues -- and their owners converged to talk Kerry. What started out as an idea to get together with some Kerry rescues in New England turned into a full fledged BBQ with Kerries and their beloved humans, many traveling great distances, to join in the fun. We were delighted to have Janet Joers, Foundation Rescue Director, and John Van den Bergh, KBTF President, fly in for the first ever Kerry Rescue Picnic. As one of the volunteers who had spoken to many of the adopters and fosters only by phone or e-mail, it was a treat to meet so many friends in person. John is already working on a special web page for the gathering and we have many super pictures from the day.

The food spread was amazing (thanks to the group!) and highlighted by a lovely cake in the shape of a Kerry that Peggy concocted (blue frosting and all!) . Okay, so nobody could bring themselves to cut into the Kerry at the picnic, but we sure ate quite a bit of it during the clean up. And Mimi Wight brought a cheesecake with blueberry garnish in the form of a Kerry. Very creative (and very tasty!)

And the dogs, oh the dogs, were simply delightful! They were all so well behaved and nobody got into any trouble. Who would have thought we could get 18 Kerries together, around food no less, and with nary a growl? (Okay, there were a few growls here and there, but being incredibly awesome Kerry owners, those were stifled immediately.) Many were sporting the new Kerry collar and leash set -- very attractive and a nice, heavy weight with solid construction. (Plug: proceeds from the sales are donations to the Foundation.)

Joining us:

Holly Monahan, her son and a strapping 50 lbs of Guinness (rescued in 2004) came all the way from Pittsburgh. The big teddy bear Guinness is a litter mate of the Turner's beloved Mulligan, although you would never guess it by looking at them. We kept teasing Holly that Guinness looked more like a Nuef puppy than an adult Kerry! I just wanted to take him home with me....but there's no way Holly would ever let him go.

Kathie and Ron Macfarlane brought Rocky Comfort gal, Maggie -- an adorable peanut of a Kerry who was a social butterfly. That mill sure didn't stifle her Kerry spunk! The Macfarlanes drove in from Buffalo, rivaling Holly in distance. Ron is an Airedale man, and when I suggested that Kerries were much smarter than those goofy 'dales, I'm not sure he appreciated it. But, hey, I'm biased! There's a great picture of Guinness with Maggie so you can see for yourself the wide range in sizes -- the largest and the smallest.

Agatha Hughes with her two well behaved KBTs in tow, Lily and Ricky, made the trip from Philly and got to be reunited with her most recent foster, Zoe (April Surprise). Another foster home to several temporary Kerries -- and willing to do more. Thanks, Agatha, and awesome to meet you!

Jean and Warren Burdick brought their two rescues, Zoe and Higgins (summer 2005). I have never seen a Kerry bottom -- and she's got a lovely girlie figure (think JLo) -- wiggle more than Zoe's! What a happy dog she is and what a handsome lad little Higgins has become! Zoe has done wonders for Higgins, and we are all thrilled that the Burdicks opened their hearts to not one, but two, Kerry rescues.

Micheal and Nancy Feehly's Cloie (Great Ohio Escape) is a real beauty. She's good size and has lovely color. Although she's a very reserved Kerry, but we got some tail wags out of her! Yet another Kerry who is incredibly well loved. We are so lucky to find such amazing homes for our rescue kids.

Sally and Dave Symmes and their grandson brought their beautiful Molly and Seamus (Christmas Miracle). Okay, perhaps Seamus rivals Zoe for the wigglebottom award -- he wiggles with happiness from the tip of his nose to the end of his tail. He is one fun-loving guy and HUGE compared to when saw him last winter. Molly is truly lovely with her very unusual coloring -- a light coat with dark points on the ears and paws -- and it looks like Seamus may turn out with similar coloring....he had quite a bit of light brown on his body for a youngster! Seamus is the littermate to Judith Bruno's Pinky. That litter sure turned early.

Another Kerry boy that has grown up quite a bit is Connor (April Surprise), owned and adored my Mimi and Nelson Wight. This youngster was 110% Kerry when he was rescued and he's still got confidence galore. We had set up some agility equipment and he was running through the large tunnel after only a few tries -- a feat it took a month for my Isobel to get up the courage to do. And Connor was so proud of himself, much to the delight of the crowd! Connor is an agility start in the making (as is Higgins and Duffy, who is already well titled in obedience!)

The Sontags (Patty, Bill and Billy) brought Duffy (who has the same sire as my male -- Wildside Lone Ranger). Patty and I train at the same facility and have spoken for a few years but never met! So it was indeed special to finally meet and see our boys together. If I may say, Diane Harrison's Ranger was a wonderful Kerry to have produced two of the sweetest Kerries I know (again, biased here!)

A new foster family -- Kathleen and Michael Connelly -- brought their KBT male (and grooming client of Peggy's), Petey. Yet another well behaved Kerry! He will make an awesome foster brother to a new rescue.
Finishing out our group were the rest of the Turner Kerry clan and my Isobel and Bailey. (Small brag here: Isobel got to show the group that she can run through the weaves all by her little ol' self -- she LOVES agility.)

So, would we do it again? In a heartbeat! We're already making plans for next summer's gathering, although we have to get through a cold New England winter first. Holly, you sure I can't borrow that teddy bear Guinness... just for the winter?

Tracey Fulmer in Newton, MA

July 2006



Sharon Burnett is a regular contributor of Kerry stories for the web site and on KB-L.



From: Sharon Burnett <sharonkerry@COMCAST.NET>
Reply-To: sharonkerry@COMCAST.NET
Subject: [KBL] The Invader
Date: Wed, 12 Jul 2006 16:54:09 +0000

Yesterday evening I was busy at my PC as normal doing some last minute edits on a presentation I was making at work today. The whole R4 gang had settled in around me - Rio on the sofa, Renny complete with her entire collection of 7 chew sticks on the family room rug, Rascal on the hassock where she could occasionally get eye contact from me, and Rocket on the floor below my stool legs nicely entwined through the stools legs in such a way that I'm sure I will kill myself if I have to get up for any reason. Just a nice, quiet time close to twilight.

And then chaos.

Out of the corner of my eye, I caught a glimpse of something grey-brown darting down the hall. Apparently Renny saw it too since whatever it was had been making a bee-line in her direction. Renny paused to gather up her collection (she'll pack her "stuff" wherever she goes), so she lost track of our visitor. But I saw it and I was on it in a flash.

Thinking it was a mouse (oh right - one of the dumbest mice ever), I was on the trail. Our visitor had gone in the dog room and I thought it was under the bookcase. But this was no mouse as I quickly discovered. Great - this was the creature that scares me the most...A REALLLLLLLY LARGE SPIDER!!!!!! ARGH!!!!!!!!!!!

I'll face snakes, lizards, rodents of any kind - but a spider. Oh shades of Hades. Why me?

So I turned to my canine colleagues and told them ok guys, I need backup. We're on a big hunt. Lets get armed. Of course my weapon of choice when faced with whacking an intruder is a natural - the Broom! Yes, a perfect weapon and all my R4 team members know what this means...its war!

As everyone gets into position, I prepare our battleground by moving the dog beds, chairs, lamp, grooming table, and the adjacent shelf unit I keep all my grooming stuff on. I notice that Rascal is at the forefront with Rio the Redd Raider standing ready to back her up. Renny is still trying to collect her stuff and Rocket is guarding the hall just in case another spider shows up. Ok, we're ready.

I move the bookcase and this poor spider is flat against the wall. She knows we're on to her. For one minute I thought about going to get my gloves and a coffee can with the idea of a live rescue. But I can't do it. Rascal is right there to help and we whacked the spider. Rio stood her ground as well. Rocket provided all the sound effects and Renny dropped all her chewies and had to start over.

I picked it up in a tissue and we bowed our heads and gave it a burial at sea (flushed it down the toilet).
All were heartily congratulated for staying with me and protecting me. Big adventure. Hope we don't have to do it again!

All the best!

Sharon Burnett
Rascal ("My mom is such a wimp")
Rocket ("I guarded the rear")
Rio the Redd Raider ("I would have eaten it")
Renny the Gator ("That spider was coming for my stuff I just know it")
Seattle WA

June 2006



During June we had an interesting discussion about Rimadyl. Morgan B.-Fredericks summaraized the discussion on one simple post.



From: "Morgan B.-Fredericks" <zmbf@HOTMAIL.COM>
Reply-To: "Morgan B.-Fredericks" <zmbf@HOTMAIL.COM>
Subject: [KBL] Rimadyl summary (LONG)
Date: Tue, 27 Jun 2006 19:30:55 +0000

Thanks to everyone who responded with their suggestions and experiences. I will try to pass along what I've learned (both from the list and other research) and what I?ve decided regarding the use of Rimadyl.

BACKGROUND: Rimadyl is an NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug). It was originally developed by the company Pfizer for human use, but they found the market too crowded and switched to marketing it for pets. It is primarily prescribed to dogs in two contexts: 1) for dogs suffering from chronic arthritis/difficulty moving (usually older dogs) 2) for short-term pain alleviation (i.e. post-op). It is an extremely popular drug, "handed out like candy", as one lister put it.

THE BENEFITS: People report wonderful results; dogs that were about to be euthanized because their quality of life was so poor due to arthritis or other joint pain going on Rimadyl and getting a whole new lease on life, etc. It can be a very effective pain-reliever on both the short and long term.

THE PROBLEM: Despite Pfizer's initial claim that the drug had NO known side-effects (?! Yeah, right!), there now a very apparent Rimadyl toxicity syndrome (which Pfizer now acknowledges). The consequences range from illness and vomiting to total destruction of internal organs and rapid death. The rub is that if you recognize the symptoms, stop administering the drug and get treatment right away, most dogs can be saved. HOWEVER, very few vets bother to warn patients, describe "watch out" symptoms, or hand out the information sheet when they prescribe the drug. Additionally, many of the symptoms are things you might associate with a post-op dog (wooziness, vomiting, lethargy, disinterest in food), so it can be hard to tell. Certain breeds (labs, collies) appear to be more prone to the toxicity than others, but there aren't really good statistics out there. There is currently a class action suit against Pfizer for deaths due to Rimadyl.

THE FUZZY PART: It's not totally clear what proportion of dogs have this reaction, or how different this is from other drugs in this way. How many hundreds of thousands of dogs have used this with no problem. Reporting is sketchy, and since this is often prescribed to geriatric dogs, it can be hard to tell if the dog was headed for the rainbow bridge already -- attributing causality is tricky. One of the biggest problems as I see it is the lack of awareness on the part of vets and guardians. For example, we just got Misha neutered and the vet gave him a large injection of Rimadyl as part of the surgery--never asked us or even mentioned it (certainly didn't tell us warning signs to watch out for) -- we just saw it on the bill! (Misha is okay but we're looking for a new vet).

WHAT THE LIST SAID: No one had anything good to say about Rimadyl, although there were reports of effective pain reduction before the dog got sick. At least 4 people described the adverse reactions their Kerries had to Rimadyl (symptoms ranging from bloody stool, to lethargy, vomiting, elevated liver enzymes indicative of poor liver function). They all caught the symptoms and took the dogs off the drug (Yay!). Most said they'd never touch it again, and one person said they'd only use it for very short-term use. One person's vet specifically said he?d never prescribe long-term Rimadyl use for any terriers. Several others felt that homeopathic medicine was far more effective and safer, and I plan to look into that further. For older dogs and joint pain, glucosamine, chondriotin, Ester C, yucca and other natural supplements were suggested.

MY CONCLUSION: No thanks! We are currently on a quest for a safer pain-reliever, should the need arise. If I find something good, I?ll let everyone know!

FOR MORE INFO: Youlia Anderson provided this link (thanks!), and it has some of the best, least-biased info I?ve seen. The FAQs are a good place to start:

Another site:

Hope this is of use to someone - thanks for all your input!

Best wishes,

Morgan & Misha
Ester, Alaska

May 2006




Irene Mele adopted Shelby from the Shelbina Rescue. Shelby was rescued with a hole in the side of her face caused by a traume sustained as a brood bitch in the puppy mills. When Irene adopted Shelby, an operation was performed to close the hole. Unfortunately, the operation failed. Below is the report on the second operation. Shelby'f full story.



From: Irene Mele <harpsichord@SUSCOM.NET>
Reply-To: Irene <harpsichord@SUSCOM.NET>
Date: Mon, 22 May 2006 19:58:42 -0400

Hello all my wonderful Kerry friends:

I HAVE THE MOST WONDERFUL NEWS. Took Shelby to the surgeon today, Dr. John Wilson of Brewster Animal Vet Hospital, for her 5th visit, and he said it looks well-healed and tightly secured. He used disolvable sutures so he did not even have to take out the sutures. He did the operation so clever that all the stitches were inside the mouth, attached to the muscles, mucous lining and then the outer skin. He did a marvelous job. I can't tell you how happy we were when he said those words. He kept checking on it for 2 weeks after the operation just to make sure and we have another visit this Friday again, because he really cares and just wants to see how it all healed again.

She looks like a new girl. I took pictures that are being developed right now from my 35 mm. I know I am in the stone age. I don't even know how to get the pictures onto this email so Mimi is going to put them on for me. Thanks Mimi. You are so dedicated in all you do. I want to thank all of you for sending Shelby goodies, even human goodies (Yum), cards, emails and phone calls. Because all of you Shelby has a new life. I even gave her a bath tonight so she could be the princess she is and she was a lot calmer this time and let me wash her. She now smells like an angel and with her new collar, you won't recognize her. Suzanne Rodda, one of my best friends, has offered to give Shelby her first grooming. That was very generous of her since she has to travel an hour just to get here. And we all know what an excellent job Suzanne can do making a Kerry come to life. I am going to take photos of that too. Her hair is growing in, but slowly. She has whiskers though. Starting to look like a Kerry again. Shelby is not only my best friend, she is my best girl. She is starting to have eye contact with me after 2 months of her being here with us. Yes, 2 months already this Thursday. What a difference from when we first got her and now. She can handle doors better and us approaching her while standing.

Shelby is our cinderella. She was treated badly by her stepfather and was denied all her rights and dignity because of him. She was treated inhumanely and left to die on the auction block until her fairy godmother, the Kerry Foundation, rescued her and bought back her title as Princess Shelby. She now lives in the Mele castle in Brewster, NY with Shea as her handsome Prince. She now has toys, delicious food, treats, a plush bed, diamond collar and even doggy friends who come to visit. She is our very special Cinderella, our Ever After girl, our Shelby.

Thank you again all from the bottom of my heart, from my family and from Shelby for saving her and giving her to us. She is a testimony of what dedication and caring hearts can accomplish in this darkened world. For one brief moment in time, the flames flickered again and a new Shelby was born. You have all brought magic into her life. She is our rags-to-riches girl because of your unification and steadfast alliance to each other and to Shelby. She is a new creation for all the world to see ONE FOR ALL AND ALL FOR ONE really works.

Irene Mele
Brewster, NY

April, 2006


Kerries are escape artists. However, when a rescue Kerry gets away, it becomes a lesson for the whole Kerry community.



From: my3kerries@COMCAST.NET
Reply-To: my3kerries@COMCAST.NET
Subject: [KBL] Thursday the 13th!!
Date: Fri, 14 Apr 2006 19:24:26 +0000

There is a diabolical plot abroad designed to send me and Jan Joers to the hospital with heart attacks, strokes, white hair and all manner of nervous twitches. Yesterday was THURSDAY the 13th - we had all manner of frights. You have read about Halley's escape, but she wasn't the only one. Higgins, now named Tucker and living in Granite Bay was left alone in a previously considered secure dog run while his new owner went to the dentist - and he managed to escape. Thankfully he was found within 45 minutes and the Kerry network was busy at work making phone calls up and down the state to reunite him with his family. Then Sally was delivered to her new home in Arizona and in transferring her and her crate to the house from the car she managed to slip out the door and was missing overnight but is now safe and sound in trembling arms of a new owner who is vowing to never again let go of her. There are some of these rescues who have backed out of collars and escaped, some that have run between legs and escaped, some that have dug out and gone swimming in the neighbors' pool, some that have scaled fences, opened windows, you cannot believe what they are capable of.

Remember this:
They are scared.
They will run.
They don't know their names real well yet.
They don't trust people yet.
They don't understand traffic and cars.
They are our charges, our responsibility, we need to look out for them.


If you are right there the dog should be ATTACHED to you. I suggest a martingale or slip lead so that they can't back out of the collar. The leash should be secured to your person. Clip it to your belt, tie it around your waist, do whatever you have to do. This will also help bond them to you as they are forced to move with you as you move around the house or yard. Keep a pocket full of kibble or treats and each time you call them to you reward them for coming. You need to be their source of everything that is good.

When you have to leave them for any length of time they should go in a crate and it should be locked or secured solidly. If they resist going in the crate or cry once in it PERSIST. By nature they are den animals and they will capitulate and be happy and secure in a crate. Don't let them fool you into releasing them so that they don't cry. Make sure all windows are solidly locked.

I'm not a trusting person. My yard gates are locked with combination locks (my meter reader and gardener both hate me but oh well!) My front door is guarded by a security screen door with a good lock. If you ring my doorbell I can open the door and still have a layer of protection between the house and the street in front. Except when working in the agility ring my dogs are on leash at all times when off my property. They wear martingales with sturdy leather leads (no flexi-leads in this house). My yard fence is set in a concrete footing and I check the integrity of the fence on a regular basis. My dogs aren't rescues, they aren't scared, but they are Kerries and they are way too smart.
Please, please, take every precaution you can! At this rate I'm convinced I'll end up in an early grave.

Eileen Andrade
Truetype Kerry Blue Terriers
Northern California

March, 2006


On March 18, The Kerry Blue Terrier Foundation rescued the largest number of Kerries in the history of the breed. Janet Joers, the Foundation's Rescue Director, and her team of 40+ volunteers across North America made the impossible possible. Below is the first public announcement of the rescue. Note the tension and the drama of the post.



From: Janet Joers
Subject: [KBL] The Shelbina Express
Date: Sat, 18 Mar 2006 14:41:46 -0800

As I write this, a caravan of 3 vehicles is traveling through the last light of day across the cold Missouri landscape, heading north from the little town of Shelbina toward Iowa. Inside are 5 exhausted, but jubilant volunteers, and their precious cargo--34 Kerries, warm and snug in their crates, quiet and still, having been rescued from the auction block and saved from the puppy mills forever. The Foundation is proud to say, for the second time in 10 days (since we announced the Great Ohio Rescue of 15 Kerries), this is the largest rescue in the history of the breed. We got every single Kerry out of today's auction. No Kerry was left behind. THEY ARE ALL COMING HOME.

On the scene today was Tracey Fulmer, Rescue Coordinator for the Northeast, and Mimi Wight, Rescue Volunteer Extraordinaire from the Great Escape, who are driving one of the vans of the "Shelbina Express," loaded with Kerries--Kerries who earlier gave kisses and tail-wags to their rescuers. Another van is being driven by Connie Steckly and her husband Tony, who are providing a safe harbor for our Kerries tonight and the days that follow. The third vehicle is driven by Connie's friend and groomer, Rachel Heimburger. We send them all high fives for their enormous success today, and wish them a safe journey home to IA, where so much work awaits.

There is another vehicle on the road tonight, traveling in the opposite direction. Our experienced and intrepid bidder, John Kimzey, is going home, after producing yet another awesome victory for Kerry Foundation Rescue. To him, nothing is impossible. Despite a painful back problem and impending surgery on Monday, John was there for the entire Kerry community today. We send him our deepest gratitude tonight, and best wishes for a speedy recovery from surgery.

Today's auction was a breed sell-out by a single puppy mill, and represented his entire breeding stock of Kerries. Most the dogs are 2 years old and up, and many of the bitches are littermates, meaning the mill either held them back for breeding, or couldn't sell them to the retail channels, and thus put them to use producing litter after litter. Puppies from this seller have been found in pet stores in the past, but that market has dried up. Thanks in large part to the Foundation's pro-active newspaper counter-ad program, and the public education provided by our web site, puppy mills can no longer turn a profit on our breed. They are getting out of Kerries. The day has finally come.

Indeed, the mills are having trouble even selling Kerries at the auctions. Today, with almost no competition, we rescued dogs selling for $25 and $50 apiece--a far cry from the days when our breed sold for $1000 and up. The average price of the Kerries today was $161, less than even 10 days ago. The tide has turned,

For 2 months now, our Rescue Team faced the daunting prospect of planning a rescue of historic proportions. 34 Kerries is the highest number of Kerries ever listed in any auction. The only way to plan for a rescue this size was to plan on getting them all. To handle that many Kerries, we needed more Rescue Coordinators, and we got them. Sharon Crockett (FL), Mimi Karsh (CO), Linda Grisley (Canada), Connie Steckly (IA, and Wheatens In Need volunteer), and Rhonda Krupp (TX) joined our team to help with this Rescue. Along with our seasoned Rescue Coordinators Candi Marzano (Northwest), Eileen Andrade (CA), and Tracey Fulmer (Northeast), they did a fabulous job finding homes in advance for our new Rescue Kerries. Without those homes, and the can-do attitude of every single volunteer, we would not have attempted this.

The logistics of pulling off a Rescue this size were daunting. We needed transportation, temporary housing, a vet, gallons of shampoo, pounds of food, dozens and dozens of blankets and towels, 34 crates and 68 food bowls to ship the dogs to their new homes, supplies of all kinds, and enough volunteers to handle the workload. Connie Steckly, who has experience with large Rescues, offered her facilities and equipment, managed to get much of our supplies donated, arranged for her vet to make a "house call," rounded up volunteers, and has trouble-shooted every problem and planned for every contingency. We could not have done this without the help of her and her family.

It will take nearly a week to get every dog bathed and groomed, vetted, and transported to O'Hare, 4 hours away, for their flights to their waiting homes. Meanwhile, they need to be fed, medicated, exercised, and hugged. It is an enormous amount of work! In addition to Tracey and Mimi, and Connie and her team, we also have Sharon Crockett and Bonnie Unsworth on the way to IA from FL. They, too, have taken time off of work, traveled at their own expense, and put their lives on hold to help with this Rescue. Together, they are the Foundation's "Ground Team." Their willingness to do what is necessary, their generosity in giving so freely of their time and expertise, and their dedication to the breed are a credit to all of us in the Kerry community.

What seemed inconceivable only a few months ago has come to pass. We pulled all 34 Kerries out of today's auction, because our team did not run for cover at the magnitude of this rescue. They did not become overwhelmed, make excuses, or look the other way. They met the challenge with courage, confidence, and excellence . . . because not doing so was, itself, unthinkable. Today they made history.

Jan in Santa Ynez, CA
Kerry Blue Terrier Foundation, Rescue Director

[More about The Shelbina Express rescue and the individual Kerries.]

February, 2006


Sometimes our KB-L subscribers submit interesting things they read. This submission was written by Richard Biby and submitted by Barbara Kam.



From: Barbara KAM <mutherwuther@MSN.COM>
Subject: [KBL] "Just a Dog"
Date: Mon, 20 Feb 2006 18:23:35 -0800

From time to time, people tell me, "lighten up, it's just a dog,"
or, "that's a lot of money for just a dog." They don't understand the
distance traveled, the time spent, or the costs involved for "just a dog."
Some of my proudest moments have come about with "just a dog." Many hours
have passed and my only company was "just a dog," but I did not once feel
slighted. Some of my saddest moments have been brought about by "just a
dog," and in those days of darkness, the gentle touch of "just a dog" gave
me comfort and reason to overcome the day.

If you, too, think it's "just a dog," then you will probably
understand phrases like "just a friend," "just a sunrise," or "just a

"Just a dog" brings into my life the very essence of friendship,
trust, and pure unbridled joy. "Just a dog" brings out the
compassion and patience that make me a better person. Because of "just a
dog," I will rise early, take long walks and look longingly to the future.

So, for me and folks like me, it's not "just a dog" but embodiment
of all the hopes and dreams of the future, the fond memories of the past,
and the pure joy of the moment. "Just a dog" brings out what's good in me
and diverts my thoughts away from myself and the worries of the day.

I hope that someday they can understand that it's not "just a dog"
but the thing that gives me humanity and keeps me from being "just a
man." So the next time you hear the phrase, "just a dog," just smile,
because they "just don't understand."

by Richard Biby, Contributing Editor
Broken Arrow, Oklahoma

January 2006


The Question of the Week for January 7, 2006 was: Has a Kerry of yours ever gone missing?



From: Joanna Leighton-Nevesny <jleighnev@YAHOO.COM>
Date: Fri, 13 Jan 2006 13:42:23 -0800
Subject: Re: [KBL] Comment about the Question of the Week - on the long, but not serious, side

Oh my, the adventures I've been an unwilling
participant to! I'll recount the most memorable, but
it is with sadness as well given that this QotW arose
out of Viktor's disappearance.

For starters, my first litter of 5 in concert managed
to dig a hole unde the fence to a neighbors yard and
from there out to the street. I just happened to look
out the window to see a black cloud of 5 little dog
bodies, moving as one, chasing a car and disappearing
around the corner. They were easy to round up after I
ran after them hollering so their adventure only
lasted a short while.

Later the three remaining youngsters (2 we were
keeping and one who hadn't been placed yet) positioned
themselves by the front gate and, as soon as it was
opened by an unsuspecting visitor, dashed to freedom.
Two contented themselves with exploring the nearby
small shopping center and were closeted (falling for
proffered prociutto) by a merchant who had my phone
number. The third was gone. The neighborhood kids
assisted in blanketing the area, but not a peep. Late
at night, I took one last drive around the extended
neighborhood, including this time a multibuilding
apartment complex a fairly good way away, calling his
name, and then returned, despondant, to sit at the
kitchen table in a thoroughly miserable state. After
not very long I heard a scratching at the patio door
and there he was! Only much later did I learn from a
good friend (and Kerry owner) who I didn't know at
that time that a man in the complex told her that this
very nice dog happily stayed with him until suddenly
he shot up and whined insistantly to go out so he let
him (not to responsible behavior, but ...). That was
the same time I was calling for him.

Later, I had relocated temporarily in another area of
Mill Vallley (separation, and all that that entails).
The door of the place I was renting had a tricky
latch. The wind blew it open one day and the, now,
two dogs leapt to freedom. I chased after them but
they left me in the dust. Driving around was futile.
A little while later, I got a phone call from my
soon-to-be-ex berating me for my carelessness (he was
at the phone number on their tags). I grred through
clenched teeth, "Just tell me where they are!"
Finally I got out of him that they were at the horse
stables in Tennessee Valley; the owner had called as
they were there and wreaking havoc in the exercise
ring. Tennesee Valley is close to the ocean - miles
from where we were staying. They must not have
stopped to sniff a bush. When I arrived, she had
Scarlett closeted in the tack room, but Rhett would
not be enticed (no prociutto, I guess) and had made
for the hills. It's a wonder one of the horses didn't
kick out at them as they were having just a swell time
chasing the horses around the ring. Rhett did respond
to my calls after a bit - another adventure brought to
a close.

The final adventure took place when I had left the
dogs for the day at my aunt's flat in San Francisco.
My other aunt, Josephine, then in her late 70's, lived
with her. Auntie Jo was never very "tightly wrapped"
and age had made her even dottier. When I came to
pick up the dogs, this is the story I heard: She had
gone to the market and apparently forgot to close the
door tightly. She returned to find the door wide open
and Rory, Scarlett's puppy, looking inquiringly at
her. "Oh m'gosh" she exclaims and rushes out to
Fulton Street which borders Golden Gate Park on the
north. It is a busy thoroughfare, but, thankfully, no
cross traffic for quite a ways. She spots Rhett and
Scarlett scampering down the street. Now comes the
farcical part. She doesn't drive, so what else is a
desperate auntie to do - she rushes to the bus stop,
boards a bus that comes fairly quickly and says the
the bus driver, in essence, "Follow those dogs!" and
"my niece will kill me!". I can only think that he
didn't have any passengers wanting on or off, because
he did! So the bus is careening down Fulton, closing
in on the dogs when they arrive at the first
intersection about 8 blocks away where the two are
running around in the intersection and traffic is
stopped in all four directions. Auntie Jo hops off
the bus, collars one of the dogs and trys to bring it
on the bus. "Whoa", says the bus driver, you can't
bring dogs on". Fortunately for the now thoroughly
frazzled Auntie Jo, a women in a converbible offers to
heip, rounds up the other dog, and drives them all
back to the flat. With profuse thank you's, Auntie Jo
gets the two inside only to notice that in her haste
she never closed the door and now the puppy had
decided to taste the wild world. Out she rushes in
sheer desperation (remembering this time to close the
door) to see the same nice lady turning the corner
with Rory sitting perkily in the passenger seat.
"When I saw another that looked like the other two, I
knew it had to be one of yours" So everyone was
reunited, Auntie Jo took a well deserved nap and was
refreshed and ready to tell her story when I returned.
Since all three dogs were so very evidently present,
I heard the tale in good humor, complemented her on
her intrepid actions, and made a mental note not to
leave the dogs there unless my sane aunt would be

I hope these misadventures bring a little levity into
what is a very anguishing situation. My heart goes
out to Rita and her sons.

Joanna Nevesny and
Mickey (Darn, I'm too well trained to have those adventures. Hmmmm!}

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Question of the Week

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Today is October 22, 2016

In this month in 1958:

Ch. Vixen's Show-Off won his 70th Group 1. He was the winner of the Quaker Oats Award for 1954, topping every dog of every breed in the US with 38 Groups in that year.

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