Blogs > Pets Unleashed

Those who love their pets tend to enjoy all animals. Our animal owners are no different. Check in on News-Herald staffers Robin Palmer and Cheryl Sadler as they share their own animal tales and announce upcoming events in Lake and Geauga counties.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Rescue Rock Off

Hooley House, 7861 Reynold Road, Mentor, will be rocking from noon to 8 p.m. Sunday, March 27, all for a good cause.

On that day, the Lake Humane Society will present Rescue Rock Off , a concert featuring Brett Borovic, Y Not, Rob Geer, Dan McCoy and the Standing 8s and Stupid Beautiful Heaven.

Tickets are $15 and include not only the concert but an appetizer buffet.

Proceeds will benefit the animals at Lake Humane Society.

Tickets are available at the Humane Society, 7564 Tyler Blvd., Building E, in Mentor..

For more details, call 440-951-6122.



Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Beagle owner sets up bank account fundraiser for dog

Peanut is in a predicament and could use a little help.
The 10-month-old beagle was recently diagnosed with Canine Liver Shunt, a problem where the liver is bypassed by the blood stream and since the liver cleans the blood, a shunt needs to be corrected to remove toxins that may accumulate, according to The Dog Health Guide.
Treatment options include medication and surgery, however, in Peanut’s case, his owner, Susan Smith of Painesville, was told by her vet that surgery would produce the best outcome for him.
“In the meantime, she has him on Lactulose Solutions as well as Metionodazole, a half a pill twice a day,” Smith said. “I talked to the specialist’s staff, who will do the surgery and spoke to them about a payment plan, however, they tell me they don’t do that. Payment up front only.”
So, Smith started a fundraiser at her local bank, U.S. Bank, at 9572 Mentor Ave., in Mentor and posted Peanut’s need with his information on Facebook requesting donations.
“The (bank) account is called ‘Peanut’s Surgery Fundraiser.’ Any extra funds raised that will not be needed will be donated to a rescue group,” she said, adding people can also send donations in the mail to the bank.
Smith also welcomes any feedback regarding any other organizations that can help her with funds or advertisement. She can be reached by e-mail at

Animal Crackers: Twiggy the Water-Skiing Squirrel

Twiggy will be missing the Cleveland Sports Show this weekend at the Great Lakes Expo Center, so you'll have to watch this video to get your fill of the water-skiing squirrel.

-- Cheryl Sadler | | @nhcheryl

Make your day a little more bearable with a weekly feature on Pets Unleashed: Animal Crackers. Think of it as a mid-week snack that just might crack you up. Send an e-mail or tweet with your suggestions for future Animal Crackers.

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Saturday, February 19, 2011

Dawson needs a home

Looking for a dog that is fully trained and well-mannered?

Dawson is your guy.

According to the Geauga County Dog Warden shelter, Dawson is both.

For good measure, the shelter officials say the young hound mix gets along with other dogs and cats.

He is also up-to-date on shots and neutered.

Stop by and visit Dawson and the other dogs at 12513 Merritt Road, Claridon Township, or call  440-286-8135.

-- Robin Palmer

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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

No gray area here as black squirrel numbers rise in Kirtland

If you're looking for a unique animal to photograph then consider shooting a digital image of a black squirrel, a seldom-seen color phase of the gray squirrel.

A small but growing resident population of black squirrels has appeared at Lake Metroparks' Penitentiary Glen Reservation's Nature Center in Kirtland. Often, several black squirrels can be observed feeding on the bird seed laid out for wintering birds. The squirrels seem to have a taste for the sunflower seeds.

The squirrels began appearing a number of years ago and have increased in numbers, says the Center's manager, Dan Burnet

- Jeffrey L. Frischkorn

Animal Crackers: Kitty is a proper gent

This cat sure knows how to sit properly!

-- Cheryl Sadler

Make your day a little more bearable with a weekly feature on Pets Unleashed: Animal Crackers. Think of it as a mid-week snack that just might crack you up. Send an e-mail or tweet with your suggestions for future Animal Crackers.

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Monday, February 14, 2011

Remembering Kitty

As this Valentine Day slips away, I remember Kitty.

Two years ago on the day that celebrates love, Kitty died just a couple months shy of her 20th birthday.

It was a long and good life, and i still miss her.

She will always have a special place in my heart.

Here is a video:

-- Robin Palmer

Heidi the cross-eyed, psychic opossum!

Remember Heidi the cross-eyed opossum? How about Paul the psychic octopus?

Well, it seems like Heidi is picking up where Paul left off... kind of. It's being reported that Heidi is going to be making predictions for the upcoming Academy Awards.

Read one report here.

Unfortunately Heidi will not be walking the red carpet. Apparently her predictions will be filmed in Germany and used as part of ABC's Oscars coverage on Sunday, Feb. 27.

Also, rumor has it that Heidi is on a diet--but not to fit into a hot Oscar de la Renta number for the show. Zookeepers have said it would be good for her health and could improve her eye condition.

--Danielle Capriato


Sunday, February 13, 2011

Looking for a home: Boxer/Great Dane puppy

The News-Herald features animals from area shelters and rescue groups available for adoption. This week, it is one of the puppies available at the Geauga County Dog Shelter, 12513 Merritt Road in Claridon Township. The boxer/Great Dane mix is about 16 weeks old, house broken, crate trained and knows sit and down commands. He is good with other dogs. His adoption fee is $125 and includes shots, worming and neutering. For more information, call 440-286-8135.


Friday, February 11, 2011

Rescue Village spring mini-camps

Registration is underway for Geauga Humane Society's Rescue Village spring mini-camps for children ages 9 through 12. Camps will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. March 29 through 30, and April 19 and 20. Campers will participate in hands-on activities such as baking dog treats; making cat toys, puppy tugs and cage signs; learning about dog/cat communication and safety; and other shelter activities. Registration is limited and the camps fill quickly. Applications are available at, or by contacting Humane Education Coordinator Mary Carney at or 440-338-4819, ext. 20.

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Thursday, February 10, 2011

Great Backyard Bird Count

The West Woods Nature Center will be participating in the 14th annual Great Backyard Bird Count. Those who would like to participate are asked to stop by The West Woods -- 9465 Kinsman Road, Russell Township -- between noon and 4 p.m. Feb. 19 or 20.

According to the Geauga Park District:
The Great Backyard Bird Count engages bird watchers of all ages in creating a real-time snapshot of where birds are across the continent. Because bird populations are constantly in flux, scientists use these counts to produce an immense picture of our winter birds. Each year’s data becomes more meaningful and allows scientists to investigate far-reaching questions: How will this winter’s snow and cold influence populations? Where are the irruptive species right now? When will migration happen this year? Are diversity patterns changing? And do any particular species need more conservation efforts? Anyone can participate, from beginning bird watchers to experts.

Park District naturalists, volunteers and Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalists will teach participants how to count birds.

Attendees also will see the list of birds spotted at The West Woods, and learn the most successful types of seeds and feeders to use at home.

Registration is not required for the program, which is intended for all ages and is wheelchair and stroller accessible. Details: 440-286-9516 or

Those who want to participate by cannot attend can conduct their own backyard bird counts between Feb. 18 and Feb. 21, then enter data on the project's website,

-- Cheryl Sadler

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Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Animal Crackers: Puppy Bowl Highlights

If you caught the big game this weekend but missed out on the puppy version of it, click here to view highlights from the Puppy Bowl. Unfortunately, I cannot embed the videos here. And even more unfortunately, you're about to waste a half hour of your day watching these adorable animals play football (and be penalized for unnecessary ruff-ness).

-- Cheryl Sadler

Make your day a little more bearable with a weekly feature on Pets Unleashed: Animal Crackers. Think of it as a mid-week snack that just might crack you up. Send an e-mail or tweet with your suggestions for future Animal Crackers.

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My Furry Valentine

Area humane societies and rescue groups will be teaming up Friday, Saturday and Sunday with each other and PetSmart Charities for My Furry Valentine cat adoption promotion.

On those days — part of PetSmart Charities National Adoption Weekend — adoption fees will be reduced to $14 for the first adult cat (ages 5 months and older) or $50 for the first kitten (less than 5 months) adopted to each household.

All cats and kittens will be spayed or neutered, tested for FeLV and/or FIV, have received age-appropriate vaccinations, and treatment for worms and fleas.

The fees will be honored by the following groups and area locations:

  • Cleveland APL, 1729 Willey Ave., Cleveland, and at Willoughby PetSmart
  • Rescue Village, 15463 Chillicothe Road, Russell Township, and the Aurora PetSmart.
  • Lake Humane Society, 7564 Tyler Blvd., Building E, Mentor.
  • PAWS Ohio, at Parma PetsSmart and Mayfield Heights PetSmart.
  • South Euclid Humane Society at Willoughby PetSmart.

For details, visit the following websites:

-- Robin Palmer

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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Learn about herbal alternatives for pets and livestock

A Geauga Park District program addressing herbal alternatives for pets and livestock will be from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Feb. 17 at Swine Creek Reservation Lodge, 16004 Hayes Road, Middlefield/Parkman townships.

Topics discussed during the program will include homeopath and herbs, as well as Bach Flower Remedies, a liquid created by immersing a flower into water and exposing it to sunlight or heat. states that this preparation, applied with a small dropper, could help animals when they have negative emotions, just as they help humans who are emotionally out of balance.

"As most residents in Geauga County have either farm animals, pets or both, this program will offer valuable information for comforting/healing animals in a natural way," said Teresa Runion, special events coordinator for the Geauga Park District.

The program for all ages is full wheelchair and stroller accessible. A $7 fee will be charged at the door, and registration is required at or 440-286-9516.

-- Cheryl Sadler

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Monday, February 7, 2011

Barks for Books at Eastlake Library

Barks for Books will be 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. Feb. 26 at Eastlake Library, 36706 Lake Shore Blvd. Children in first through third grades will spend 30 minutes reading to trained therapy talks. Registration is required at 440-942-7780.

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Friday, February 4, 2011

Snow Melter for the Shelter

Geauga Humane Society's Rescue Village will have a fundraiser — Snow Melter for the Shelter — on Feb. 26.

The event, presented by Black Lab Corp., will be from 6:30 to 10 p.m. at the Family Life Center, 16349 Chillicothe Road in Bainbridge Township.

Organizers said the evening's theme is "close to home, close to the heart" and will feature gourmet artisan melts and soups from Food for Thought, wine provided by Muddy Paw, beer from Cellar Rats Brewery, live music by the George Foley Trio, and live and silent auctions.

Individual tickets are $80 per person. Patron tickets are $125 per person, which include unlimited wine and beer and a limited-edition Rescue Village wine class. For ticket information, or to make a donation, call 440-338-4819, ext. 19, or visit

-- Cheryl Sadler

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Thursday, February 3, 2011

Geauga Dog Warden shelter needs help

The Geauga County Dog Warden shelter is in need of vaccinations, wormer and heart worm tests.

To help with the costs, the shelter is seeking donations of gift certificiates from RevivalAnimal.

For more details, call the warden's office, 12513 Merritt Road, Claridon Township, at 440-286-8135.

-- Robin Palmer


Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Have a fat cat or pudgy pooch?

Do you need to shed a few pounds? Better yet, does your pet?

Read on ...

Hill’s Science Diet has teamed up with Alison Sweeney, host of “The Biggest Loser,” to help pets lose weight in 2011.
This effort is close to Alison’s heart as she recently found out that her dog Winky needed to shed a few pounds, joining the millions of loving owners that struggle with their pet’s weight each day.
Alison discovered an easy solution with the first pre-packaged meal and biscuit system for dogs — new Science Diet Weight Loss System.  Pre-packaged meals have been helping people lose weight for years and for the first time, owners and their dogs can reap the same benefits.

In addition, Sweeney is inviting readers to enter Hill’s PetFit Challenge.  Between now and March 31, you readers can go to and submit a simple essay describing your pet’s weight loss for a chance to win $1 million.

Did You Know?
  • In the United States there are a total of 77.5 million dogs and 93.6 million cats.
  • An Estimated 51.5 percent of Dogs and Cats in the United States are either overweight or obese.
  • An Estimated 45 percent of US dogs are overweight or obese = 35 million dogs
  • An Estimated 58 percent of U.S. cats are overweight or obese = 54 million cats
  • If you feed a 20-pound dog one ounce of cheddar cheese it’s the equivalent of a 5-foot, 4-inch woman eating 1 1/2 hamburgers or one chocolate bar.
  • If you feed a 10-pound cat 1 cup of milk it’s the equivalent of a 5-4- woman eating 4 1/2 hamburgers or five chocolate bars.
Information from American Pet Products Manufacturers Association — 2009 US Pet Population and 2009 Association for Pet Obesity Prevention-Pet Obesity Study.

 -- Robin Palmer

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Concord Abigail makes second annual prediction

Concord Abigail predicted in 2010 an early spring would come, this year she said the same.

The second annual event by John Niedzialek of Western Reserve Resource Conservation  and Development Council who resides in Concord claims "Abby gives a more credible prediction."

The ceremony took place at noon, which a much more scientific process is used at that time, according to Niedzialek. 

Concord Abby didn't see her shadow, which means an early spring.

World-famous Punxsutawney Phil made the same prediction a few hours earlier.

Despite the animals' predictions, which I hope are true, I have always gone by what my grandfather says.

There's six more weeks of winter on the calendar regardless of what the groundhog predicts on February 2.

Angela Gartner

Animal Crackers: Cats in Zero Gravity

Cats generally fall on their feet. But what happens when they are in zero gravity?

-- Cheryl Sadler

Make your day a little more bearable with a weekly feature on Pets Unleashed: Animal Crackers. Think of it as a mid-week snack that just might crack you up. Send an e-mail or tweet with your suggestions for future Animal Crackers.

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Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Punxsutawney Phil's 125th anniversary and groundhog facts

The winter storm blowing through the United States apparently won't disrupt Punxsutawney's Groundhog Day plans. (My question: What happens if the snow is too thick for Punxsutawney Phil to get out of his hole?)

From The Associated Press:
PUNXSUTAWNEY, Pa. — A day before Punxsutawney Phil gives his annual Groundhog Day weather forecast, his handlers say the show will go on despite a winter weather warning.
The National Weather Service is calling for as much as seven inches of snow in Punxsutawney, followed by a possible mix of sleet and freezing rain overnight Tuesday into Wednesday morning when Phil "forecasts" either an early spring or six more weeks of winter.
The Punxsutawney Groundhog Club Inner Circle’s spokesman Luke Webber says nothing will prevent Phil from celebrating a milestone since his first appearance in 1887.
Webber says Wednesday "is our 125th anniversary of Punxsutawney Phil, and his fans will come out. The hotels are well-booked."
Several thousand people are expected for the daybreak celebration about 65 miles northeast of Pittsburgh.

If you're interested in tomorrow's winter-weather prediction, you might have some interest in Jeffrey L. Frischkorn's post on the Outdoors blog with some facts about groundhogs. Click through to learn more about our furry, burrowing friends.

-- Cheryl Sadler

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