Time to write to the FDA Commissioner von Eschenbach

As we continue to read articles such as this one, China grapples with food contamination credibility crisis, think about Senator Durbin’s request for us dog folks to email FDA commissioner.

Just click here to send a letter. It’s a cinch and takes less than a minute to do so, as the letter is already written and all you need to do is enter your name and email address. And, there is also a way to email friends to get them to send in letters.

Golden Retriever Service Dogs in the making

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‘Puppy petters’ help family train dogs for disabled
By Alison Stanton, Special for The Republic

Thanks to the efforts of Ahwatukee residents Phil and Susan Simeone, eight puppies are already learning to become assistance dogs. The puppies were born in late April to Nina, a 2-year-old golden retriever who the Simeones are raising for Power Paws Assistance Dogs, Inc., a Scottsdale non-profit organization.

“We are both dog lovers, and we had been aware of the service organizations and would ask about them,” Susan said.

Power Paws trains golden and Labrador retrievers in 90 commands to assist disabled adults and children. The commands that the dogs learn include opening and closing doors and drawers, turning lights on and off, pushing elevator buttons and retrieving dropped items.

Power Paws is often able to provide assistance dogs to people within one to two years from the completion of the application, one of the shortest waiting times in the industry, according to the group.

Two years ago, on Mother’s Day weekend, Nina joined the Simeone family. After noticing the dogs’ calm, nurturing disposition, Susan said, the Power Paws staff approached her about having Nina bred with another dog from the organization. At the end of February, another golden retriever named Nelson came over to visit. The two hit it off quite nicely, Phil said.

There’s more . . . .

Golden Retriever Bubba …. so very pampered

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Cafe pampers pets…and their people
By Washington Post

Bubba is having his hair fluffed after an apple-oatmeal shampoo. His owner, Mike Fitzgerald, sits at a table at the cafe in the next room, drinking cappuccino and checking his e-mail. Sure beats trying to wash an 80-pound golden retriever in the family bathtub. … Fitzgerald, of Annapolis, brings 13-year-old Bubba once a month for a full-serve $25.50 wash, dry and brush-out. “He loves it. He jumps right in the tub,”