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Michelle’s Happy Tales Report
2/4/19 Mostly Happy Tales From Inside And Around The FoG Kennel.

Good news – we have an adopter for Speedy, our older (but smaller) black dog!! He’ll stay with us a little longer just so King is not all alone in the kennel. So who among you would like the honor of adopting the LAST Fog-dog??

King Displays Some Attitude

Victory King is a handsome, sleek, strong boy with a great, happy personality. He’d be here in my home if it wasn’t for the cats. Yes, he is looking for a home without cats or small dogs. He is seven years young and very sweet. Although he is from Macau, he has learned English quickly and very seldom barks. He is healthy and smart and playful. He’ll make an awesome addition to your family!

I hope some of you will give us a call and come meet King. He will make a wonderful house-dog and we will still be here to support you and the dogs. We aren’t going anywhere. Jerry & I have adopted out roughly 2400 greyhounds through Friends of Greyhounds. I had a few helpers doing home deliveries off and on but the vast majority of the dogs, we delivered ourselves. I even drove dogs in the van to other groups in other states. The deliveries were the very best part!

All those dogs had a lot in common. They come out of the kennels with no idea of what’s coming next. Their whole world is changed and all they can do is wait to see what the future holds and to trust us that everything will be all right. After the deliveries, we still have that obligation to be there if the dogs’ need to come back or the families need some kind of help. We will honor that obligation until our last grey gets up to the Rainbow Bridge.

So come meet King soon. He’s so excited about his future. I’ve tried to explain it to him but I don’t think he’s really gotten the idea of what “home”, “house” and “family” mean yet. If you’d like to be the one to teach him all about that, please give me a call or drop me an email. King will make a great house dog.

Love, Peace & Greyhounds,

Michelle

Black Dogs Need Love, too!!

Adoption groups around the world have known about the problem but now someone has given it a name and brought it forward. Black Dog Syndrome (BDS) is also referred to as the BBD (Big Black Dog) problem. FoG has seen it for years in our own adoption kennels. King and Speedy, who are living in the kennel now are like so many other black dogs in shelters, having already spent more time waiting for new homes than lighter-colored kennelmates generally do.

BDS was studied by graduate students at The George Washington University. (In other words – it’s not just MY opinion!!) They concluded that BDS occurs in shelters and rescue groups throughout America and affects black dogs, as well as cats. It is possible that there may simply be more black pets in the shelter and rescue population. However reports from across the country illustrate the problem, and multiple national organizations have long recognized BDS as an issue that adversely affects the adoption rates of black pets.

What is Black Dog Syndrome?

In a survey, Petfinder member shelter and rescue groups reported that most pets are listed for 12.5 weeks on Petfinder, whereas, less-adoptable pets (such as black, senior, and special needs pets) spend almost four times as long on Petfinder. Research showed that Black Dog Syndrome may be caused by a combination of:

  • Size
  • Unclear facial features
  • Dimly lit kennels
  • The “genericness” of black pets
  • Negative portrayals of black pets in books, movies and other popular media such as the black dogs in Hound of the Baskervilles, Harry Potter, The Omen, and even on the common “Beware of Dog” sign.
  • Black cats are readily associated with witches, superstition, and bad luck.
King (Gold collar) & Speedy (Red collar) are waiting for homes!

So what you can do?

Display your love of black pets proudly to demonstrate that there is nothing wrong with them.

Encourage friends to look past their first impressions of a black pet.

Tell people about BDS! It’s generally an unconscious prejudice and most people will move past it once they are aware.

Remind people that their parents were right:- personality is more important than appearance. It’s just as true for pets as for people!

And Remember – Black dogs need love, too!!

Thank you to the Petfinder.com site for compiling this information!!

Michelle’s Happy Tales Report
1/25/19 Mostly Happy Tales From Inside And Around The FoG Kennel.

Happy Belated Peanut Butter Day!!

Yes, yesterday (January 24th) was National Peanut Butter Day and I hope everyone gave their greys a nice big blob of peanut butter in celebration!! Greyhounds do love their peanut butter. (Remember that if you’re having problems giving a pill.)

King Displays Some Attitude

And we have one other important holiday coming up – – yes, once again it is President’s day on January 31st ! Not the National one – – But the celebration of the birthday of Jerry Deitch, President and founder of Friends of Greyhounds. A few of us will be lunching at Olive Garden to celebrate. I can’t invite all of you to lunch but I can invite all of you – and your friends and family members – to send him birthday wishes by email that day. His addy is: fogdaddy1@gmail.com . I won’t tell him (he doesn’t read my blogs) so a bunch of email birthday wishes should be nice surprise for him.

Well – in other kennel news- – – We still have two very handsome boys in the kennel that are looking for homes. Speedy (8 yrs old) and Victory King (7 yrs.) will make great house dogs. They are both on the smaller side, shiny black, playful and happy. They are very quiet and hardly ever bark. They are healthy and ready to go. Neither has very good teeth but the vet cleaned them when they were neutered and they both love gnawing on bones from our butcher. Like our US dogs, these two Macau dogs are loving and attentive. Neither of them is cat tolerant and probably not smaller dog tolerant. But some of you out there must have room for a new greyhound. They really don’t take up much room. Our regular adoption fee is $225 but because they are not “regulars” we will consider a deep discount.

Speedy

I know many people will not adopt a black dog. Now we are offering you a black, adult dog. We will still deliver (within a reasonable area) and we will still be here to help if you need it and to accept the dog back if there’s a problem. So, go ahead, give one the boys a try! Remember, there is a special place in heaven for people who adopt black dogs!

And another update on kennel activity – – Most of you know that FoG has a working relationship with Broward Pet Cemetery in Plantation. (Click here for the “Greyhound Memorial” on the FoG website) It is a beautiful and caring location for our greys to spend eternity – or until we get there to claim them!! They also have an onsite crematorium which I prefer. That way I KNOW I’m getting MY dog back! But I digress. . .

The point of this is that we are getting ready to inter some more of our pets. We don’t open the grave each time there is one dog’s ashes to go in. We open it periodically and put in a “bunch” of dogs. At this time, I have 13 dogs’ ashes here at the house ready to go over. If you have cremains (that’s the correct term for them) and are ready for them to go to their permanent resting place, I urge you to let me know. There is a form on our site for all this but we have done enough with this wonderful family that manages the place that they are lowering our prices a bit. So count up your boxes and fill in what you can of the form and get hold of me. We’ll work out the cost when we know how many we are interring. Placing them in this site gives them a permanent, guaranteed location where their presence is honored forever. Florida has some very strict laws preventing the development of lands that are dedicated as Cemeteries and that includes pet cemeteries.

Remember that we can put in any cremation remains and we are not breed snobs. Dogs, cats, parents, etc. If you look on FoG’s site, you will see that there are already 29 greyhounds, 1 non-grey, 3 cats and 1 human! Our current human is Fred Weatherbee and after he passed, we took his girl Mitzi into our home. She left us a few weeks ago so she will be joining her first daddy again! Call me (Michelle – 954-937-9663) if you have any questions or concerns about our program. I think it is financially and socially practical. Jerry & I will both be with the dogs, too! I also think that the grounds and the neighborhood are just beautiful and I look forward to being there. You can stop by and visit and see for yourself!

Have a greyt week – – and give your dog a kiss for me!!

Love, Peace & Greyhounds, Michelle

Greyhound Memorial at Broward Pet Cemetery

Michelle’s Happy Tales Report
1/8/19 Mostly Happy Tales From Inside And Around The FoG Kennel.

LAST OF THE MACAU GREYHOUNDS

Victory King and Speedy have come a long way to find a home here in South Florida. They were both professional racers at the Macau Canidrome. Now that the Canidrome is being closed, they and a number of other racing Greyhounds were sent to America to find homes and families where they can live out their lives. Yes, these are retired racing Greyhounds that speak Chinese and possibly Portuguese. Their best chance of a successful adoption would be to place them with owners that have greyhound experience. And they would love to come live with you.

The Macau racers are a bit smaller than our local guys. Speedy stands about 33″ tall and King is another inch or two taller. Only people who already have greys would notice the difference. They are both sleek black dogs with a white blaze on their chest.

They are quiet and seldom bark, and both came to us with full documentation including an international health certificate, and their own “passports”. They have had every immunization your vet could think of and they each have an internationally recognized microchip. One interesting thing we discovered is that they are not on heartworm prevention because Macau doesn’t have heartworm!

Both of them were recently neutered by our dear Dr. Willie at VCA Promenade in Lauderhill. He did what he could with their teeth but that is definitely their downside. Apparently dental care was not important in Macau. Dr. Willie has gotten them started with as good a dental cleaning as he could but you will need to follow up and keep an eye on those toothies!! They love shank bones from the butcher and that will help a lot.

They are really showing some personality as they discover the toys in their kennels. Squeakers don’t last long and based on what we have seen, neither of these guys will be able to live with cats or small critters. Regarding adoption, we will still be adopting to the standards in our application and Manual. These dogs have been raised differently than our American racers but most of the same standards apply. We will of course be here for any dog that needs to be returned or to give help in any way we can.

Victory King

The adoption fee is normally $225 but we really want to see these guys land in good homes soon. I can’t wait for them to learn about living outside of a kennel. So we will give preference to previous greyhound adopters and lower the adoption fee to $175. Give us a call or drop me an email if you have questions or if you’d like to come meet the new boys in town. They will need a crate to get started with but we can probably loan you one if you don’t have yours any longer. Please consider coming to meet King and Speedy. Call Michelle at 954-937-9663 to arrange a visit. If nothing else, you can tell other people all about the Macau Greyhounds!!

Victory King is 7 years old, born March 14th, 2011, and he is very healthy, strong and handsome. He is a patient and quiet guy but loves attention and has been caught enjoying a sqeaky toy when no one is looking. Being a Pisces, he is wiling to curl up on the couch and watch soap operas with you or take you to the park to chase birds or nap in the sunshine. A very giving and selfless guy.

Speedy

Speedy (yes, that’s all the racing name we have) is also black, healthy and shiny. He was born August 1, 2010 and is 8 years old. He is a Cancer which predicts that he will be intuitive, sensitive and “home loving.” He has now been uprooted from his former life and sent across the world to people with strange languages, rules, food . . . So, can you imagine how grateful he will feel when he finally gets a real home? I predict that Speedy will be a great partner to go through life with. He has come a long way and deserves a wonderful home. How about yours?

Speedy Enjoys a Head Rub

Michelle’s Happy Tales Report
1/2/19 Mostly Happy Tales From Inside And Around The FoG Kennel.

Yuki (Pearl River) & Shawn

Happy New Year to our whole extended FoG family! First of all, congratulations to Shawn Campana who adopted Zhujiang Winds (we called her Pearl) on New Years Day. Pearl is now called Yuki and her greyhound brother, Charlie will be showing her around Davie. We wish them many happy years together.

Victory King

We are starting the New Year with two boys looking for homes. They are Victory King (7) and Speedy (8) and they are the last of our Macau greyhounds. Both are on the smaller side with shiny black coats, a white blaze on the chest and few white toe-tips. The Macau greyhounds are a little smaller than our domestic dogs but they are very playful and happy to be here. I can’t make promises but I will say that here in our kennel, they are the quietest dogs we’ve ever had.

Our usual vet process to get a dog ready for adoption is neutering, dental and shots. Well each dog comes with an International Certificate of Vaccination which amounts to a canine passport. It has lots of documentation about shots and health exams – far more than what we require of domestic greyhounds. So they have been to the vet to be neutered and have their teeth cleaned. The neutering went fine but their teeth are just awful. The vet did what he could but caring for their teeth will be a challenge for a while. Before we even took them to the vet, we gave them big shank bones to chew on to get the dental cleaning started!! They loved that!

They are microchipped and you may register the number in any databases you choose to use. They are crate trained and ready for a home and of course you can change their names. The adoption fee is still $225.

Speedy

When the dogs were shipped to us they came in huge, brand new dog airline kennels that were ours to keep. If you know anyone who is going to sending a large dog anywhere by airline, I’d be happy to make them a deal on a kennel!! These kennels are amazing, huge and IATA rated.

King and Speedy are happy to be here and they love our kennel. I can’t even imagine how thrilled they will be when they get into a real home with people of their own to love and be loved by. At this point, we do not believe that either of these dogs will be cat or small animal tolerant. But they can run like the wind!! If you’d like to meet these two, please call/text/email me and we’ll set up a time for you to visit. You can really make a difference for one of these dogs. They have come a long way to be part of a family – maybe yours.

Love, Peace & Greyhounds,
Michelle

MACAU GREYHOUNDS

Well we have one holiday behind us and the New Year celebrations ahead. Then perhaps we can consider getting back to normal or something similar to that. Of course, here at the kennel, the big fuss is about the Macau dogs.

We still have three that are presently available for adoption. Because the dogs are few and the interested adopters are many, I have not put these dogs on Petfinder like we generally do. I prefer they go to current adopters who have some experience with greys and may be better prepared for unexpected behaviors. They appear to have very high prey drives and probably should not be placed in homes with cats or small dogs. I would be reluctant to place them with children under 9. Generally our cut off is 5 but these guys have been raised differently than our domestic dogs.

Macau dogs are smaller in stature than our American greyhounds. They are sweet, outgoing and happy. None of them have major scars or personality hang-ups that we have seen. They have extensive documentation of their immunizations as each dog has its own “passport”. They are microchipped and you will just have to register the dog to you with whatever US listing service you want to use.

Each of the dogs has been to our vet for spay or neuter, teeth cleaning and general health checkup. They came to us with horrible teeth but our vet did what he could as an initial dental cleaning. You’ll probably need to invest in dental chews and may want to do some followup cleanings.

When you look at their photos, you will see that all of them have raw areas on their noses. They had black noses when they got here but they apparently are not used to chain link fencing and they find it fascinating that they can rub their noses on it through the links. I’m sure they will grow out of that and have black noses once again!! They are not young compared to our American dogs’ retirement age but they have very little gray fur and look much younger. They get along well with all the other greys they have met around our house. We turn them out with our house dogs and everyone seems to get along (knock on wood!!).

So here is the “private listing” of the greyhounds that are looking for homes – – –

Speedy – Black male – born 8/1/10 – 9 years old.

Victory King – Black male – born 3/14/11 – 7 years old

Zhujiang Wins – Black female – born 2-24-12 – 6 years old. We were first told she was 8 years old but her official documents say she is actually 6. “Zhujiang” translates to Pearl River so we call her “Pearl”. As always, you are free to re-name your dog.

Call us if you would like to meet and possibly adopt one of these dogs. Adoption fee is still $225.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Please note that we will not be taking in any more Greyhounds from Macau or other tracks. Friends of Greyhounds is still here to accept dogs that need to be returned and re-homed for whatever reasons. We will still be dogsitting for greys and available for questions or problems. But Jerry and I are retiring from taking in new greyhounds.

Love, Peace & Greyhounds,
Michelle

Greyhounds from China

Today was the official showing of the Greyhounds from China. The Chinese government closed the Macau Track. One stipulation of the closure was allowing the casino to remain open is finding good resources for the 650 dogs. The Chinese government paid for the FIRST class trip. The dogs are being flown all over the world to good homes, five dogs came to Friends of Greyhounds agency where Hughey was obtained. The dogs travel by boat from Macau to Hong Kong, flown to Frankfurt Germany and transferred to a flight to Miami arriving last Wednesday. if interested go on line to Friends of Greyhound.

Gene & Hughey

Michelle’s Happy Tales Report
12/4/18 Mostly Happy Tales From Inside And Around The FoG Kennel.

We know who is coming!!

On Wednesday afternoon, December 12th, we are scheduled to pick up five greyhounds at the Lufthansa Cargo offices in Miami. I am soooo excited!! I spoke with the coordinator for the whole project and she gave me information on the dogs that we will be receiving.

Our dogs are all “middle aged” and ready for Florida retirement! They are:

  • Speedy – Black male – 9 years old
  • Victory King – Black male – 7 ½ years old
  • Worthy Class – Red Brindle female – 8 ½ years old
  • Winning Star – Black female – will turn 8 years old the day after she arrives!
  • Zhujiang Winds – Black & White female – will be 9 in February.

(Note: the Macau racers are not listed on Greyhound-data)

Caryn, our coordinator from Grey2K for this whole thing, says that she hears that every group that has accepted dogs is amazed at how sweet and gentle and happy the Macau dogs are. I can’t wait!

Today Scott Sharp (Dusty’s dad) & I made a “dry run” to the cargo offices so we know where to go on the 12th. It’s still a bit confusing but it’ll give me more confidence for that day and Lord knows I don’t want to be late. And our long-time friend Andrea who has documented many of our milestones for FoG through the years, is going to ride along with us to film the arrival!

Our biggest impediment to getting the dogs from the tracks and into their homes quickly is mother nature. Their systems are used to a different schedule, time zones, languages, food, etc. We need to allow them time to acclimate and settle in before we try to get them to the veterinarian’s office to be spayed and neutered. Now that we know they are all seniors, that is even more important! Their systems will be going through enough of a shock with different time zones, different noises, food, people, languages, schedules, grass and so much more that we can’t imagine. They need some time to learn to trust us and to know their new home and to learn to be loved. It’s a great time for them to meet our friends, too.

They arrive on the 12th and adding 2 weeks to that puts us in that time between Christmas and New Years when many people, including our vets, take vacation time to spend with their families. So vet work will most likely take even more time. But these dogs are well worth waiting for.

We are thinking that we could probably schedule some “open house/kennel” time and those of you that want to come meet the Macau dogs can come to the house in Sunrise. Our yard isn’t huge but we have some chairs and a bench and it is fenced. You can meet the dogs and introduce them to your dog and maybe we can deliver him or her as soon as the vet is done.

So let us get the dogs in and we’ll see what we can put together. I’m so excited. It’ll be a very full house around here but that’s something I have really been missing. That’ll make my Christmas!! And I’m hoping there are people reading this who will make Christmas special for one of these dogs.

Michelle’s Happy Tales Report
11/27/18 Mostly Happy Tales From Inside And Around The FoG Kennel.

EVERYTHING I KNOW ABOUT THE TRACK CLOSINGS

One week since the last Happy Tales Report and we have some changes to report.

On the local greyhound front, some of the tracks are attempting to operate just as they always have while they wait for the courts and public opinion to settle down. When I put together our track list for the previous blog, we had been told that tracks that were not racing at the time of the vote would not race again. Well, that was overturned. So they apparently are going to let the tracks race right up to the closing bell if they want to!!

Luckily, some of our local folks really don’t want to race dogs, preferring to host card rooms and slot machines. Works for me!! No dogs are injured at card tables or slot machines.

Hollywood Dog Track is fading into history. They now operate as the Big Easy Casino with lots of gambling of other sorts. I don’t object to that. I just don’t want them maiming and killing dogs to do it. I called today to verify it and I was told very clearly that Hollywood Dog Track and/or Big Easy Casino no longer conducts greyhound racing!! It is over. I’m sure they can’t wait to put that big oval track area to better use!!

Flagler dog track in Miami has been using their JaiAlai license for some time now to conduct their gaming and they have slot machines. They reinvented themselves as Magic City Casino and that is a strategy I heartily applaud!! The owners and management of Flagler have been a good supporters of Friends of Greyhounds. It has been awkward a few times but we worked together for the good of the dogs.

The Florida Kennels compound where we used to have our adoption kennel and office is co-owned by the Miami and Hollywood tracks. Now that neither is racing dogs, I suspect the bidding war for that huge and amazingly located property is ON!! Developers have been salivating over that thing for years. On our first visit to the Flagler track, the big, big boss of the daily operation, Bill Hutchinson, had us in his office. It was the day he made us their “official” adoption group. A secretary walked in and laid some papers on his desk and he told her to send the guy away. He then told us that they got million dollar offers for the Florida Kennels property on Red Road every week, but without the kennels, Hollywood and Flagler tracks couldn’t operate. (Bill was a good man. He made that greyhound business as good and humane as it could be. Even after he retired, we kept in touch a couple times a year.)

The Naples – Ft. Myers track kennels will be starting their live dog racing season on December 23rd and runs until some time in April. The Palm Beach track to our north is a year round track and despite all the activity, they haven’t missed a beat. I suppose they will run til they are legally shut down, December 31, 2020.

So we aren’t getting dogs locally right now – – but you think you want one??? We have a surprise for you – – Close your eyes – OOPS – don’t do that, or you can’t read the blog. (Sorry!) On Wednesday, December 12th, we will be receiving five racing greyhounds from the track closing in Macau. They had 650 greyhounds to re-home and they are paying for their airfare and travel kennels. We will pick them up that afternoon and settle them at the house. Maybe by that weekend we can have a little visitation day here at the house – or something. We’ll see.

Grey2K is working with the Macau track and a number of other supporters to get the dogs safely relocated. They asked that we give the dogs 14 days between arrival and vetting. They’ve already gotten all their shots and been tested for all the things you need to test for but we want them to get comfortable in our kennels, in this whole new world, new food, new noises. Then we will have them vetted and be ready for them to go to their new homes – – so we can schedule more of them!! So stay tuned – dogs are coming!! No, I do not know colors or sex or anything else. Woo-Hoo!!

Have a great week and give your dog a big hug from Momma Michelle, please!

P.S. – Since we haven’t had gatherings or adoptions much lately, our coffers are pretty bare but that wasn’t a problem. However, the insurance on the truck is due. I kinda thought I could figure on getting rid of it but now since it looks like we have a little bit of activity in our future, we need to keep it on the road and our insurance is coming due. Plus, the incoming dogs will need to visit the vet for spay or neuter. Yes that gets reimbursed from the adoption fee but we need it up front. Jerry & I have been carrying FoG for some time now and our social security doesn’t go a long way. So if you can spare a few bucks, please donate online or drop us a check. A little something multiplied by the number of people reading our blog would make one heck of a difference!! Thank you so much!

Love, Peace & Greyhounds,
Michelle

Preparing kennels in Macau to send greyhounds to the United States.

Greyhound Floor Decor

Best floor décor ever!