Monday, August 20, 2012

Adopt A Shelter- a new way to support shelter animals

If you have been listening to my radio show PAWsitive Radio- All things Pets! you likely know how important the topic of supporting animal shelters and rescue organizations is to me. There are many ways to support your local shelters. And it doesn't always involve writing a check.You can volunteer, donate food or other supplies shelters need. We often donate a portion of our booksale proceeds from On Toby's Terms to different shelters and rescue organizations.

Toby the Dog and star of On Toby's Terms and Toby the Pet Therapy Dog & His Hospital Friends. Toby raised more than $10,000 for local animal charities and engaged more than 10,000 people on his kindness mission.  Giving back and PAWing it Forward can be fun, creative and makes a big difference!

 Chris Ruben the Founder and CEO of shared how Adopt A Shelter works.  It is a FREE and Easy way for shelters to do fundraising and it is fast!  In fact, EVERY time you shop online using website, you can earn more money for your favorite animal charity. When you shop through at one of their online retail merchants (the online mall), Adopt-A-Shelter™ is pays a commission. That means that  Adopt-A-Shelter™ directs 100% of the donation displayed on directly to your shelter / organization or your organization of choice.  What a fantastic concept. Shopping made easy, and, it supports animal rescues and shelters at the same time.

Listen to internet radio with chammond on Blog Talk Radio

THE PAWsitive Challenge:  On the show Chris and I talked about how important it is to get the message out there, share how Adopt a Shelter works and to make sure your local charities are aware, and are registered (it is FREE). So....... my challenge to all my blog readers.

1) share this blog so that others can learn about Adopt A Shelter
2) Visit their Facebook Page and share with your Facebook Friends
3) Share your ideas with me about how to spread the word about Adopt A Shelter- you can post a comment on this blog, or post on our facebook page   We'll send all your responses to Chris and his team at Adopt A Shelter.  And, to make it fun, I am going to have a draw.  The winner (all submissions will be put in the Doggie Bag for a draw. The winner will receive a copy of Toby's books, and a mention on our radio show and blog)

You can listen to the show at:

Please remember to share the show through Twitter and Facebook, and I'd love for you to become a Follower of the show. Every time I get ten new followers on PAWsitive Radio, I will make a donation to an animal shelter!!!  Just go to  to follow

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Pet Adoption: Happy Tails!

"Toby is a wonderful five year old male Chesapeake Bay retriever. He is very affectionate and loves to be alongside his humans. His hobbies are walking and playing fetch.  He is house trained, occasionally vocal when there is something to bark about and an absolutely awesome foot warmer. He is going to make someone an amazing friend." That was the description in the NASAP Pets for Adoption listing.  When I read that and saw Toby's smiling face, I knew he'd be the PAWfect family member for us.

Toby came to us with his own set of baggage, and even though we became frustrated by his behaviours (breaking toilet tank lids, rearranging furniture, and destroying our closets repeatedly), he brought us so much joy. Toby helped thousands of people, he became a therapy dog and worked in a hospital (through Chimo AAT) and later went on tour - that's right!  He was the star of several books, On Toby's Terms (which is being made into a major motion picture) and Toby The Pet Therapy Dog.
I am excited to announce the new book in my Toby series for children, Toby The Pet Therapy Dog Says Be a Budddy Not a Bully

Toby also inspired me to start my own radio show for pets....PAWsitive Radio- All Things Pets. 
Every Saturday I interview the most amazing guests in the animal producers, authors, pet trainers, adoptive pet parents, to name a few....
You can listen to past shows on the archives here (link above) or listen live every Saturday at 3 pm MST.
Toby's story is an adoption story with many happy tails.... and one that the legacy just keeps on going. 
We would LOVE to hear your pet adoption story, please share with us!!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Toby the Pet Therapy Dog

Animal Assisted Therapy (AAT) has helped many people .... in hospitals, in schools, group homes, Seniors facilities, to name a few. Our dog Toby was an AAT dog with Chimo and Wednesdays were clearly Toby's favorite day of the week. I was so inspired watching Toby engage with patients, and by the change in environment when Toby was on the hospital unit, that I wrote about it in On Toby's Terms, which was my first book. 

Toby The Pet Therapy Dog and His Hospital Friends is a book for children to help them understand how good it feels to help other people, how to be a good friend, and the role that animals play in helping people. 

The other day when talking to a neighbor's child, she said "I really like the part of the book where Toby helps the little boy in the hospital, and I like that Toby is a good friend to Simon."  It was wonderful to hear that the message was hear.

Check out what the Special Needs Book Review had to say about Toby's Books:

We would love to hear your animal assisted therapy stories. Is your pet an AAT pet? Maybe you had a therapy dog visit your or a family member in hospital?  We would love to feature you

Want to hear about some other dogs that bring love, connection and help to people?  I was thrilled to interview Steven Latham, the Producer of the new Shelter Me PBS film series on my PAWsitive Radio-all things pets Radio Show. Listen here to learn about how shelter dogs are helping veterans returning from war cope with PTSD, how a women's prison trains dogs to become service dogs, and the many ways that shelter pets are contributing to the lives of people, in fact in some cases, they are saving lives!  There have been almost 30,000 listens to this show (in 2 days).  Let's help spread the word, and help Shelter Me accomplish it's mission.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Shelter Pet Success Stories

Have you ever adopted an animal from a shelter?  Fallen in love with the smiling furry face on a rescue organization website? I did!  We adopted Toby, a Chesapeake Bay retriever... he had me at WOOF!  Big brown eyes, great smile, white teeth, charming personality... a wonderful addition to our family.

 I am delighted to interview Steven Latham the Producer of the wonderful new PBS show, Shelter Me.  Please join us on Saturday August 11 at 3 pm MST on PAWsitive Radio....all things pets. You'll learn more about Shelter Me, these incredible shelter pet success stories and more.

Steven is an award-winning filmmaker and the President of Steven Latham Productions. He recently produced and directed SHELTER ME, a family-friendly PBS show that celebrates the human-animal bond with positive, uplifting stories about shelter pets and their new homes.  SHELTER ME focuses on the success stories to bring more people into the shelters to give these incredible animals a second chance.
Website: http://stevenlathamproductions

Listen Live or download the show later at:

And... send me your favorite rescue animal stories....  let's keep this conversation going. You can post a comment on the blog, post on @ontobysterms on Twitter or  On Tobys Terms on Facebook..... or you can email me at

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Hot Dog! How to keep your pet safe in the hot summer months.

Summer’s here. It’s hot outside and if it’s hot for us then it’s definitely hot for our pets.

Our dog Toby on one of his many book PAWdographing tours.  This photo
was taken in Burlington, Ontario Canada close to where I grew up.
Toby is the star of the best selling book On Toby's Terms
(being turned into motion picture -
And he was one hot dog!!  He attracted attention wherever he went.

Sharon McRill of the Betty Brigade was my guest on PAWsitive Radio, she provided some excellent tips to keeping our pets cool and safe.  Sharon is founder and president of The Betty Brigade, an expanding personal assistance and concierge company based in Ann Arbor, MI. The Betty Brigade helps busy professionals with moving, home staging, organizing, event planning, pet care, errands – virtually anything clients need done but have no time to do themselves.  Now 9 years into the business, The Betty Brigade cares for more than 350 pets in the Ann Arbor, MI area. They mainly have dogs and cats with a sprinkling of birds, fish, bunnies and other furry friends.

Check out some of her helpful tips in this article:

Sharon reminded listeners to remember to carry water for their dog, and suggested the collapsible water containers like the one shown below (we had one of these for Toby. It was convenient for walks, travelling in the car, and for the days he volunteered at the hospital).  Make sure you are not overwalking or overworking the dogs in the summer, it is like us working out in a fur coat. Take breaks, find shade and don't force a dog to keep going if he/she is hot or tired, especially older dogs And, Sharon advises to have a good leash, and always be present and focus on the dog and the surroundings you are walking in. And of course, never get in the middle of a dog fight. 

If you are planning your summer vacation, Sharon recommends that you call pet sitters, dog walkers and kennels with lots of advance notice.  You can listen to Sharon's great tips here on PAWsitive Radio:

To sum it all up, I share a quote I love (from"Old dogs, like old shoes, are comfortable. They might be a bit out of shape and a little worn around the edges, but they fit well." by
Bonnie Wilcox 'Old Dogs, Old Friends'

On August 11 on PAWsitive Radio, I'll be interviewing Steve Latham, the producer of the wonderful new PBS series, Shelter Me.  On August 4 I interview Steve Gamlin.  You can listen in, follow the shows or download them later to listen to.  Share them and enjoy them.

I would welcome you to comment to this blog sharing your heartwarming and best great rescue pet stories. I will choose one of them to feature during my radio show with the Producer of Shelter Me!!  And you can also post them on or email to