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John’s Happy Tales Report
4/23/18 Mostly Happy Tales From Inside And Around The FoG Kennel.

As we approach the end of April, the FoG kennel story may not be winding down completely but the activity is slow. The main news now is the proposed amendment that could eliminate dog racing, which has long been a tradition especially in Florida. Both sides of the pro/con racing groups can and have produced at least what they consider to be valid points to support their positions. I know people from both sides of the aisle who have passionate arguments. FoG kennel came into being because of dog racing. It’s my understanding that because of financial support and the threat of being cut off from acquiring the dogs, regardless of our own personal feelings, we have always had to maintain a neutral position between the pro racing and anti racing factions. I know that I was asked (rather strongly) not to express a position against or for racing; my job was to help find good homes for the retired racers and keep my mouth shut about the politics. Having found homes for over two thousand dogs over the years, FoG has gone above and beyond requirements and expectations in my opinion. Not all adoptions can end with everyone living happily ever after, but anyone who knows our operation, knows how strict Michelle is with finding quality homes for all the dogs, which included the sick, injured, old, young, abandoned, returned, mistreated, lost, ugly, as well as the perfect health, beautiful hounds which are the only ones some groups would even accept.

Any news that we receive, we will pass on to everyone. The amendment is still being interpreted as far as I know, but basically it states that the tracks can keep their casinos and card rooms and not have to run dogs any longer. There will be a bunch of false news and scare tactics out there no doubt. As with the old saying “If it looks too good to be true, it probably isn’t”, anything too ridiculously extreme probably is not true. Grey2K is not going to burn kennels; owners and breeders are not going to kill thousands of dogs. If this does happen, the FoG kennel plans to be a big part of placing the remaining retired greyhounds in homes. If there is a last minute panic, we are sure that every one of our followers and adopters will step forward to house a dog. And this is just in our community; there are several other groups in Florida as well as the rest of the country that are ready, willing and able to help. It is cheaper for the owners to give them away than to have them destroyed, so we are the cheaper option as well as the more socially acceptable.

So keep your eyes and ears tuned in, this will be a very significant year for the greyhound one way or another. May 2nd is FoG’s 17th birthday. Seventeen years and over two thousand adoptions, many happy tales, some sad, but overall it’s been a greyt ride. Now raining, soon to be followed by the heat, so remember to keep your hounds cool and hydrated. Also, make sure you and all your friends are signed up on our E-mail list so we can keep you informed. Have a greyt week, we will probably return in two weeks and bulletins will be on our website when we get important news.

Greyhound Haiku

I love my master;
Thus I perfume myself with
This long-dead squirrel.

I lie belly-up
In the sunshine, happier than
You ever will be

Today I sniffed
Many dog behinds-I celebrate
By kissing my master.

I sound the alarm!
Paper boy-come to kill us all-
Look! Look! Look! Look! Look!

How do I love thee?
The ways are numberless as
My hairs on the rug.

My human is home!
I am so ecstatic I have
Made a puddle

Look in my eyes and
Deny it. No human could
Love you as much I do

I am your best friend,
Now, always, and especially
When you are eating.

My owners’ mood is
Romantic-I lie near their
Feet. I fart a big one

CRC APPROVES EIGHT REVISIONS FOR THE 2018 GENERAL ELECTION BALLOT

CRC Office — Press Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 16, 2018
CONTACT: Meredith Beatrice, (850) 508-5204

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Pursuant to Article XI, Section 2 of the Florida Constitution, the Constitution Revision Commission (CRC) today voted to approve eight revisions to be placed on the 2018 General Election ballot for voter consideration.

CRC Chairman Carlos Beruff, said, “For more than a year, Commissioners have traveled across the state to speak directly with citizens about the changes they want to see in the Florida Constitution. After months of in-depth research and debate, the CRC has narrowed down thousands of comments and ideas into eight final revisions for voter consideration. From protecting our state and territorial waters from oil drilling to strengthening our ethics laws, I commend my fellow Commissioners for their hard work and leadership representing the people of Florida. We are grateful to the thousands of Floridians who participated in this historic process and look forward to letting voters have the final say in November.”

Proposed constitutional revisions on the ballot must secure at least 60 percent voter approval to become law. A formal report will be submitted to the Florida Secretary of State as soon as possible. A list of the final revisions approved by the CRC are provided below; the full text of each revision is available on flcrc.gov:

###

ABOUT THE FLORIDA CONSTITUTION REVISION COMMISSION (CRC)

Once every 20 years, Florida’s Constitution provides for the creation of a 37-member revision commission for the purpose of reviewing Florida’s Constitution and proposing changes for voter consideration. The Constitution Revision Commission (CRC) meets for approximately one year, traveling the State of Florida, identifying issues, performing research and possibly recommending changes to the Constitution. Any amendments proposed by the CRC would be placed on the 2018 General Election ballot. For additional information, visit flcrc.gov. Follow the CRC on social media @FloridaCRC (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube).

ACTION ALERT FROM THE FLORIDA ASSOCIATION OF ANIMAL WELFARE ORGANIZATIONS

The Florida Constitution Revision Commission (CRC) will take a final vote on Monday or Tuesday on the proposed constitutional amendment to phase out greyhound racing in our state. If Proposal 6012 passes it will be placed on the November ballot for all Florida voters to decide.

It is critical that key members of the committee hear from you before that vote.

Please tell them you SUPPORT Proposal 6012 to phase out greyhound racing!

WHAT YOU CAN DO

Time is of the essence: Please call or email these members of the Constitution Revision Commission TODAY and urge them to Vote YES on Proposal 6012 to end greyhound racing in Florida.

Chair Carlos Beruff
(850) 717-9550
Carlos.Beruff@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Hank Coxe
(904) 353-0211
Hank.Coxe@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Jose Felix Diaz
Jose.Diaz@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Erika Donalds
(850) 270-8283
Erika.Donalds@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Gary Lester
(352) 775-7890
Gary.Lester@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Anna Marie Hernandez Gamez
(850) 320-8716
Anna.Gamez@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Tom Grady
(850) 270-1630
Tom.Grady@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Marva Johnson
(850) 792-6574
Marva.Johnson@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Frank Kruppenbacher
Frank.Kruppenbacher@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Jeanette Nuñez
(305) 227-7630
Jeanette.Nunez@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Darryl Rouson
(727) 822-6828
Darryl.Rouson@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Bill Schifino
(850) 792-5825
William.Schifino@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Chris Sprowls
(727) 793-2810
Chris.Sprowls@flcrc.gov

Commissioner John Stemberger
(850) 329-0805
John.Stemberger@flcrc.gov

Commissioner Nicole Washington
(786) 309-6022
Nicole.Washington@flcrc.gov

Here is a sample email message:

Dear Commissioner:

As a Florida resident, I urge you to vote “YES” on Proposal 6012 that would phase out greyhound racing in Florida. Greyhound racing is illegal in 40 states. Florida is home to 12 of the 18 tracks still operating in the United States. Approximately 8,000 greyhounds endure lives of confinement at Florida tracks. For 20 to 23 hours a day, these dogs are kept in cages barely large enough for them to stand up or turn around. On average, a greyhound dies at a Florida racetrack every three days. Greyhound racing is a dying industry. Since 1990, the amount wagered n greyhound racing has declined 74% and tax revenue from greyhound racing has dropped by 98%. In fact, according to a study commissioned by the Florida legislature, the state is losing between $1 million and $3.3 million annually because regulatory costs exceed revenues collected by the state. Please vote “YES” on Proposal 6012 to phase out greyhound racing.

Following are all of the commissioners’ email address if you would like to cut and paste them all into a single email:

Carlos.Beruff@flcrc.gov; Hank.Coxe@flcrc.gov; Jose.Diaz@flcrc.gov; Erika.Donalds@flcrc.gov; Gary.Lester@flcrc.gov; Anna.Gamez@flcrc.gov; Tom.Grady@flcrc.gov; Marva.Johnson@flcrc.gov; Frank.Kruppenbacher@flcrc.gov; Jeanette.Nunez@flcrc.gov; Darryl.Rouson@flcrc.gov; William.Schifino@flcrc.gov; Chris.Sprowls@flcrc.gov; John.Stemberger@flcrc.gov; Nicole.Washington@flcrc.gov

FAAWO
We are a non-profit membership organization developed to strengthen the animal welfare field by uniting animal advocates, providing professional growth and education opportunities and maintaining a unified voice for animal welfare in the state of Florida. Learn More

THE DOGS NEED YOU TO ACT!!

I know, Friends of Greyhounds has always been a politically neutral entity but we need to change that now. We are not pro or anti racing. We ARE Pro-Greyhound DOGS!! In light of that, we are posting the mailing from the Florida Association of Animal Welfare Organizations (FAAWO) that I just received.

The process is underway to put the decision about phasing out greyhound racing on the ballot for the November election. The Committee that works on this has to hold one more vote and the bill must get 22 votes to pass.

If it passes, it will allow the constitutional change to be decided by the voting Citizens of the State of Florida. That’s you and me!!

There are extremists on both sides throwing all kinds of horror stories out there and they are not true. The bill, IF passed, would allow for racing to continue for 18 months longer. So the farms would indeed stop their breeding programs but they’d still have racing income albeit tapering off as seasons end. I think 18 months notice that you are losing your job is pretty good.

Yes, a lot of dogs will be retiring but our adoption groups can be ready for them. All the greyhound lovers will want “just one more” greyhound because they might not be offered another for a while. Foster families will appear from everywhere and many of them will keep the dog.

The people working at the tracks and farms will still have work with the other forms of gambling and casinos. And the large tracks to land that dogs used to run on will become shopping centers and housing developments. Florida Kennels is a HUGE piece of property right on Red Road and I know developers are standing in line for that!

Greyhound racing is regulated by the State through the Parimutuel Wagering Division. According to the testimony I have been hearing, and doing the math, our taxes are funding the various bits and pieces of regulation that the state requires. We have personally dealt with some of the on-site inspectors and watched the regulations being disregarded, misinterpreted and just plain broken over and over again. And now we hear that the state regulatory agency costs more than it brings in from the various taxes, fees and fines it oversees. For those of you who have been with us a while let me add just one thing – – Where were the inspectors for D Kennel??? The two I dealt with didn’t even know about tattoos!!

Is there a downside to this proposal? Not that I see. If the politicians would keep it in its simple form and not hang a bunch of personal projects on it that can cause it to snag, it should pass through the system. Then it can be decided by all of the voting public of the state. It affects them all and they should all be aware of it.

We need to let our politicians know that the choice to race dogs should be left to the people of Florida. We should be ashamed that it has taken this long!

And if you are not a registered Florida voter – – Get Registered NOW!! Your dog is depending on you!

John’s Happy Tales Report
4/2/18 Mostly Happy Tales From Inside And Around The FoG Kennel.

I hope everyone had a Good Friday and a Happy Easter. We did church, breakfast, and spent the day eating great food and working a jigsaw puzzle. I only mention this because my two hounds for some reason, were constantly trying to help us. I’ve never heard of greyhounds doing any kind of puzzles, maybe it smelled like food, but for whatever reason they were bugging us several times.

Life in the kennel has slowed down to almost a stop. Fella was finally adopted and we’re hoping he does well in his new home, he is going to be a good hound, and he just needs to get settled. There are no hounds left in the kennel at this time. This does not mean we are closed, we are still here to offer any help for any of our hounds and their families and we will always be available for the inevitable returns that come back, ours and any others that manage to find us. After nearly twenty years and two thousand greyhounds, I think Michelle and Jerry have earned a short break. They have been married to the kennel for what seems to be forever, and with animals it is very difficult to get a break from the action. Michelle has been threatening to get her knee fixed and this is a good time to follow up on it. So, the action in the near future will most likely be minimal, so I will probably end up on the blog every other week, Scott will probably be blogging when there’s something to talk about, and the kennel will go into sleep mode for a while.

April is Adopt a Greyhound month, as previously mentioned, we have an empty kennel, but will be here for any returns, and Michelle will be dog sitting (greyhounds) for those who are traveling or need to dump junior for whatever reason. Hollydogs and Elite Greyhounds in Loxahatchee are still available for adoption and you can check out their websites. Ok, that was easy, that just about covers all the news that’s fit to print at the moment. I’m sure there’s also a possibility that we can throw together a hound gathering at Beverly Hills or some location that allows both humans and hounds to gather that is cool enough or has shade, so check us out periodically. Keep your fingers and dewclaws crossed for Fella, he’s waited a long time to get his forever home, so we hope this works out for him and his new family. Stay cool, have a greyt week and we will be around if not square or trapezoid. Once again, the greyhounds and our community are very special as you already know, a heartfelt THANK YOU to everyone for all your help, love, and support over the years, we love all of you humans and hounds alike.

Michelle’s Happy Tales Report
3/27/18 Mostly Happy Tales From Inside And Around The FoG Kennel.

Fara’s Trip Home…

So my Tuesday morning started falling apart on Monday night. One of our greyhound adopters, Cindy, had found a greyhound in her yard and it wasn’t hers! The mystery dog was a female, black, petite, with a little white patch on her chest. She called me in the evening and we tried to figure out who it was. I went through our adoption database looking for all the adopters of black greyhounds in her zip code. Many were too old or I knew they had moved or the dogs had gone to the Bridge or were the wrong sex – – basically that did not pan out in the least. So much for the easy fix.

Because they were in Hollywood, we knew many of the local dogs had come from Hollydogs. I contacted them by email. The dog settled in to spend the night in Cindy’s garage area since she was not cat tolerant – at ALL!!

After checking my email this morning to see if anyone was looking for a dog (nope) I headed to Hollywood to pick her up. She’s a real sweetheart but a little older and somewhat confused at that point. Her coat was shiny and she was not injured. Even the pads of her feet were not worn so we knew she was from nearby. She was a bit confused and just rode quietly back to the house with me.

First we tried to identify her by her tattoos but parts of them were hard to read and I had actually just about decided she was a dog adopted out by Bay Area Greyhounds, race name Starz Far Away. I tried calling them but no one answered.

Then I realized I had skipped an important step. I had not scanned her for a microchip! I ran for the scanner and lo and behold, she had a microchip!

About that time, her dad called me. He had just gotten back in town and was thrilled that we had her safe and sound. While he was getting from the airport to us, I decided to check with the microchip registry to make sure this was the real owner.

I had never been on the phone systems for the microchip companies. I ended up calling two companies. Both were brutally long wait times. The first one checked the chip number and told me I had to call a different registry. The second registry (24 pet watch) was able to tell me the owner’s name, give me several phone numbers and another contact name and number. They also took my information presumably so they could call the owner, too. When he picked her up he told me he had phoned the chip company from the airport and made sure everything on the registry was up to date. I guess that was the best an owner can do from a distance like that. I don’t know if I would have thought of that!! Good Job!

That’s how I spent my morning. I don’t know about you, but I’m going to make a concerted effort this week to be sure all my dogs’ chips are properly registered. (I mess up, too!!) And if you have a dog that is not microchipped, I can do that at the house here for $25 or gather your greyhound friends and we can have a microchip party. Or I can travel and I can chip non-greyhounds, too. If you prefer, your vet can chip your dog(s). If you don’t know if your dog is microchipped or not I have scanners that can tell us and your vet should have scanners, too. Microchipping works. Ask Fara!!

A PERSONAL, IMPORTANT NOTE:

Put yourself in that owner’s place. It is scary. Fara is seven years old and black. If a pound had gotten her, or a speeding car, or a vicious dog, the results might have all been the same. It’s a tough world out there. We owe it to our dogs to take simple precautions. Double check the fence and double check the registration of the chip. And hug your hounds for me….

Love, Peace & Greyhounds,
Michelle

Luna….gotcha day

Hi Michelle

today is Lunas Gotcha Day so we went down to the Keys to celebrate all things her with her favourite “hobbies”, walks in new places and swimming in the ocean. No one told her greys can’t swim.

Hope to see you soon

Hugs, the Crazy Miami gang

John’s Happy Tales Report
3/20/18 Mostly Happy Tales From Inside And Around The FoG Kennel.

Fella

We finally realized that today is Tuesday and that yesterday was Monday. The good news is that there is very little going on at the moment. We have only Fella left in the kennel at the moment. Fella is alone in the kennel most of the time; he goes out with the rest of the housed dogs, and then gets a private room for napping. He’s gotten used to it and is doing fine with it, but he really needs a real home of his own. He will make a wonderful pet for someone; all we need to do is hook them up. He’s settled down a lot and Michelle says he needs to get adopted soon, he’s getting fat hanging around their house with them.

Sly is back at the kennel, or actually fostering with Jerry B., she went out but still has some intestinal issues and Michelle thinks she will do better staying with someone who is closer to our vet, as she is still going back and forth to the doctor’s.

We would like to thank all the volunteers and all the students that have called to volunteer. We are so downsized that we currently do not need any now, but thank you for caring enough to call, we’ll see what the future brings. They were sure great for us when we had them working for us, and several of them actually grew up and adopted greyhounds. That’s about all the news and excitement that’s fit to print at the moment, have a greyt week, keep your hounds safe and don’t bite anyone.

Normal lab results in Greyhounds are not the same as other breeds.

John’s Happy Tales Report
3/12/18 Mostly Happy Tales From Inside And Around The FoG Kennel.

Fella

It looks like March came in like a lamb as far as the FoG kennel blog is concerned. Not too much going on as of tonight. There is only one dog left in the kennel currently that would be Fella. Michelle has verified that he is lonely and would like a home of his own. If anyone is thinking about adopting him but has any kind of reservation, please let us know. We will do anything that we can to help this boy get his forever home. There is absolutely nothing wrong with him, he is not a special needs dog, no injuries, no problems, so please check him out. If you are putting it off because you have a trip coming up, Michelle will babysit him for free, if the adoption fee is a problem, she’s even willing to negotiate that if that’s what it takes. He may not do well with cats, but he gets along with other dogs very well. He runs like the wind and naps like it’s his job, so he’s a true greyhound through and through. Michelle says that every time she goes into the kennel, he’s got this look of expectation like ‘’this is the time she’s bringing my new family to meet me and I’m ready’’. She’s been reassuring him that his new family is out there, so please don’t make a liar out of her.

We’re still looking for a good spot for our gatherings, so far, nothing concrete. Molly went to her new home in Yulee with Robert and Sandra and is fitting in perfectly so far. She has a large fenced in yard with a Samoyed, a Cockatoo, and a cat that has experience with greyhounds whatever that means. Blackjack, aka BJ, now known as Flagler, is also doing very well in his new home.

Although we currently have fewer dogs, we are still functioning in the greyhound community. We are still the safety net for any dogs in need, we will be there for those that have to come back, or even those that aren’t ours originally, but end up homeless in our area. People get sick, die, lose jobs, divorce, and their dogs are returned, and we are still here for support and help relocate them to another loving family. We’ve adopted out over 2,000 dogs since 2001 and will be here for them and any others who need a helping hand. That’s about it for this week, please check out our boy Fella, he is a great hound and will be a fantastic family addition for someone. Have a greyt week, don’t bite anyone, and keep your hounds safe.