People and Their Pets: Picture Perfect
According to the American Pet Products Association’s National Pet Owners Survey, 68 percent of U.S. households own a pet. What’s more, we spent $69 billion on them last year. Clearly, we love our animals, and we’ll do (and pay) whatever it takes to make them happy. Read on for a pictorial of local pets, plus three top dogs making a difference in the community, pet-friendly patios, a roundup of local shelters, and more.
by Megan Wiskus
Paws for a moment to drool over these local animal companions.
“Boomer is a three-year-old Labrador-coonhound mix who was rescued at just five weeks old. He loves to go on runs, car rides, lay by a cozy fire, and sit on my lap and snuggle. Though he’s 75 pounds, he thinks he’s 20 pounds.”—Morgan Rodriguez
“Angel has one blue eye and one green eye. Her hobby is chasing bugs when we’re in our backyard.”—Gilbert Carma
Achilles, Choco Latte and Rocco with Lorraine (human)
“I enjoy walking my Great Dane Achilles, Doberman Rocco, and Chihuahua Choco Latte around my neighborhood in Rocklin. They were even in a breast cancer fund-raiser dog fashion show, Hounds for Hooters.”—Lorraine Thomas
“Buster is an observer whose favorite foods are fruits and vegetables. He’s also incredibly spoiled (ahem, loved)!”—Jeana Bronson
“Bella is a one-year-old Doberman who loves to sunbathe by the pool and play with her stuffed animals.”—Jane Theuer
“Carmelo is a rescue from the Placer SPCA. He’s very vocal and affectionate and loves stalking birds from the window and chasing toy mice around the house.”—David Whitman
“Finn is a corgi and going to be a therapy dog when he grows up.”
Bailey with Adam (human)
“Bailey lives for food! He literally performs flips and partial somersaults as he awaits the delivery of his food bowl. His BFF is his ‘brother’ Adam.”—Jen Kosciuk
“Bailie, aka Bailie Bear, is an angel now, but memories of her live on. She loved everyone (except her nemesis—squirrels). She loved to hide from us, but she would lay low and flat, right on top of the vinca ground cover…plain as day!”—Susan Ishimaru
“Colleen is notorious for stealing food; she swiped this waffle right out of the toaster!”—Wendy and Kevin Martin
“Everybody loves Annie (Anna Louise). She gets along well with all dogs and people, likes watching TV and listening to live music, and is a great swimmer and retriever.”—Felipe Luevanos
“Bella is a nine-year-old Pomeranian. She loves salmon and burgers, is afraid of high-pitched beeping sounds, and was just diagnosed with mitral valve heart disease.”—Karen Peters
Bon Bon with Samantha (human)
“Bon Bon is a rescue Maltese-Jack Russell terrier mix. She can twirl on her hind legs, loves cheesy treats, and is a loving, playful dog.”—Jeremy Tsang
“Chiko loves his walks and playtime at the dog park. His two favorite things are chillaxing on the couch with his favorite pillow and sleeping under the covers with Mom. He’s an American Bulldog mix and was adopted two-and-a-half years ago from the Placer SPCA.”—Larissa Parecki
“Emma is a rescue who was thrown away in a donation box in the middle of the night at the SPCA. She lives to eat, and everything that goes into her mouth is her very favorite food. She loves sleeping in our bed and sometimes wonders why we’re there taking up space. She’s the love of our life.”—Don and Eileen Lento
“Koa Kalani loves to go for walks, play tag, chase balls, eat peanut butter and pumpkin biscuits, and is learning how to swim.”— Valentina Cannon
Halli and Polo
“Halli is a three-year-old basset hound and Polo is a 15-year-old poodle mix. They love sunbathing in the backyard, sitting in our chairs, and are both rescue dogs. If we leave our morning coffee mug unattended, they’ll finish it off for us.”—Mary O’Connor
Sadie and Miley
“Sadie is a border collie lab mix who loves to party; Miley loves a good treat and stealing human food at any cost.”—Geoff Devers
Lilo and Louie
“I’ve had Lilo (left) for four years. I volunteer at Leaps and Bounds Rabbit Rescue and when I brought home Louie (right) as a foster, they fell in love right away, so we adopted him and now they get to be together forever.”—Kaitlyn Bryer
Madison and Quinn
“Madison and Quinn are the babies of the house! They love their treats and belly rubs from their mom.”—Tanya White
“Lucy LuLu is a six-year-old toy Yorkie. She snacks on Rice Chex and loves to play ‘catch me’ around the living room.”—Patricia Tocher
Maks with Kylee (human)
“We rescued Maks as a puppy, and he’s absolutely the best dog! He loves his family and going on road trips to the ocean.”—Kari McKinley
Maya and Chiquillo
“Maya, a three-year-old German shepherd, protects me and is very sweet and loyal. She’d rather receive my love, affection, and petting than eat her food. Chiquillo, a three-year-old Doberman and husky with one blue and one brown eye, is very playful and handsome and jumps high while twisting in the air.”—Felipe Luevanos
“Midas is a 115-pound, five-year-old Bernese mountain dog. He can balance a treat on his nose, loves to have his ears scratched, and his favorite spot in the house is directly underneath the baby’s highchair.”—Erika Phillipsen
“When Olive gets tired of chasing lizards, she enjoys a nice, relaxing belly rub.”—Max Lee
“Molly loves to take water bottles and bury them; it keeps her occupied for hours!”—Sandra Slater
“Four-year-old Olivia Scout was adopted from the Yolo County SPCA and is a spirited Chihuahua-cairn terrier who lives up to her mixed breed reputation. She absolutely loves her three-mile daily walks, hopping from the side of the pool onto her own boogie board, and playing water bomb!”—Kimberly Adorni
“Pippa is a vizsla (Hungarian shorthaired pointer) and ‘works’ as a greeter and test-eater at Campfire Treats (handmade dog treats store) in Rocklin. She’s always cheerful and loves to run, play, and swim in the pool.”—Stevie Wittich
“Mr. Lincoln is a 13-year-old wire-hair-fox terrier who’s tired of walking. He’s been photographed hundreds of times and is a rock star.”—Sue Fone
“Ollie was rescued from a local animal shelter five years ago. He loves to cover himself and curl up under his blankets and entertain us with his many tricks: sit, shake, beg (tilting his head with his tongue hanging out), spin around, roll over, and back up. He’s cute but demanding—barking at us when he wants to eat or go out and even when he wants us to sit so he can lay on our laps, but we totally love him!”—Susan Ishimaru
“This is Polar Bear. Found as a stray in Sacramento, he now lives in Roseville with three other fur babies and couldn’t be happier (or sweeter)! “—Nikki Portillo
“This is Pepper Garcia enjoying the beautiful river at Coloma Resort. She is just happy to be wherever the family is and loves cheese and bacon.”—Maria Garcia
Ritz with Lisa (human)
“We recently adopted Ritz from a local shelter. He seems happy to have a new furever family!”—Lisa Davis
“Piper is a two-year-old terrier rescue. She’s very smart and sweet and loves her new forever home.”—Bonnie Wagner
“Remi is an eight-year-old blue Weimariner who loves to chase tennis balls. We spend many days hiking and swimming at Folsom Lake. He speaks, rolls over, and will ‘give you five.’ Much to my dismay, he is quite the ‘counter surfer.’”—Maureen Reissmann
“Tiki Bird is my 17-year-old sun conure. He’s wonderfully playful and very vocal, especially if he sees or hears something unusual. His life expectancy is 35 years, which is good because I love this little guy!”—Christina Richter
“Trigger is a four-month-old playful, curious, mischievous miniature pinscher mix who was recently rescued. He loves cuddling and running but gets nervous on car rides and will majorly drool!”— Jennifer Adona
Sasha with Mireya (human)
“My German shepherd, Sasha, is smart, loving, active, and very vocal. She knows I would give my life for her and would do the same for me. She loves car rides and knows about 30 words (her reaction to any of them is priceless, too)! I never felt so loved until I met her.”—Mireya Gaton
“Sissy, a rescue kitty from Roseville, loves to walk on the edge, open drawers and closets, sit on Mommy’s lap to watch TV, play laser tag, and eat fake plants.”—Paula Zuber
Tribble and Taffy
“Our kitties Tribble (yes, sounds like the ones from Star Trek) and Taffy (sweet as candy) are both rescues. They’re from different families and had a slow time adjusting to each other but now entertain both one other and us!” —Bev Lewis and Gregg Hutchinson
Stella, Max, and Luca
“My three German shepherds—Stella, Max, and Luca, aka Medicare Man—were rescued through Greater California German Shepherd Rescue. All three are partners in crime, thick as thieves, and the biggest lumps of love ever! They’re smart, loyal, and formidable looking but the worst they would do is kiss you to death.”—Kim Schory
“LooLoo is a 12-year-old Labradoodle and pretends like she can’t read, but I know she can!”—Sue Fone
“This is how we find Willow every day when we get home—patiently waiting for her snuggles.”—Rebecca Bugbee
“Tucker is the happiest, most sentimental love bug in the world. Not to mention adorable! We’ve been soul mates for five months, and he takes more of my heart every day. If he could jump in your pocket, he would.”—Mary Little
“Lily is a corgi who loves to boss her big brother, Finn, around. Although a girl, she hates baths and getting her toenails done. She has a mighty voice and always announces when the UPS driver arrives.”—Margaret Ervin
“This is Roxy the boxer! She loves to lay in the sun, play with her many toys, and be vocal as if she’s talking.”—Angel Galloway
“My little peanut, Rubee Jean, recently passed away at the tender age of seven. She was five pounds and struggled her entire life with seizures. We recently learned she had advanced stages of heart failure, which took her from us too soon. She was larger than life and touched everyone’s heart. She has taught me that no matter what struggles you’re hit with…just keep your head up and love life.”—Melissa Gratiot
“Zoey is an eclectic Yorkie terrier. He’s just as content snuggling with his mama or riding along town in his pet stroller as he is adventuring outside and jumping on rocks. During the summer, you can find him sunbathing by a window or rolling around in a wet towel.”—Lisa Tran
“Ike is deaf, and his favorite game is fetch; he’ll bring the ball to your feet and push it closer and closer until your shoes get dirty or you throw it.”—Walee Sitachitt
“Slate is six years old and loves salmon jerky, shrimp, and any kind of seafood; he also adores kids and going to his mommy’s clinic (she’s a pediatrician) to play with them.”—Paul Ip
“My Maltipoo, Poppy, lives in the retirement community of Sun City Lincoln Hills. She’s smart, does many doggy tricks, and loves me the most!”—Nicki Hobby
“Koda Bear likes going on long walks to Starbucks to get Puppuccinos (his favorite treat) and loves people. If you ever see him around, feel free to stop and chat and pet him. It’s guaranteed to put a smile on your face.”—Don Garnas
“Wanda is a male box turtle and was named before the gender was determined. His favorite activity is interacting with ‘Rocksanne,’ a turtle-shaped rock that has him confused.”—Bev Lewis and Gregg Hutchinson
By Alyssa Mielke
Itching to welcome a furry friend to your family? Check out these local animal rescues to find your perfect pet match.
FieldHaven Feline Center
Ensures that their cats have a safe place to call home by supporting the health and safety of the animals in the community. 2754 Ironwood Lane, Lincoln, 916-434-6022, fieldhavenfelinecenter.com
Labs 2 Love Rescue
Helps to find every Labrador retriever a kind, loving, and forever home after providing veterinary car if needed. Lincoln, labs2loverescue.org
One More Dog Rescue
Dedicated to saving lives, one dog at a time. Loomis, onemoredogrescue.com
Strives for every adoptable animal to have a home and ensures each animal is treated with kindness. 150 Corporation Yard Road, Roseville, 916-782-7722, placerspca.org
Sierra Pacific Great Pyrenees Club
Committed to preserving, protecting, and promoting the Great Pyrenees dog breed. Granite Bay, 916-791-7580, spgpc.com
By Alyssa Mielke
Richard Hunter and Klinger
Five-year-old Klinger is the first-ever certified dual purpose running guide dog in the U.S. Add to that the bond he has with his owner, Richard Hunter, and the dog is one of a kind.
Hunter, an avid runner and former commissioned Marine officer lost much of his sight due to retinitis pigmentosa, but his blindness hasn’t stopped him from achieving a long list of accomplishments—some of which include running the Boston Marathon multiple times, being the second blind American runner to complete a 100-mile endurance run, and receiving the Sacramento Running Association’s 2017 Community Runner of the Year Award.
After he was struck by a car while riding his tandem bicycle and seriously injured, Hunter’s middle daughter encouraged him to get a guide dog. Unfortunately, guide dogs who could go on runs didn’t exist. Enter Guiding Eyes for the Blind. With assistance from the nonprofit’s CEO, Thomas Panek, Hunter helped create a special training program for running guide dogs. Hunter says Klinger’s success has “paved the way for other blind runners to be partnered with running guide dogs across the U.S.” and is what makes him proudest of his dog.
Klinger, with his undying stamina, offers Hunter a new sense of freedom within his Folsom neighborhood. The German shepherd is his most frequent running guide and is always rewarded by “a game of fetch with a tennis ball after every single run.” In addition to that, Klinger has a friendly and gentle disposition and is the poster pup for guide dogs everywhere. At press time, Klinger was a semifinalist for the American Humane Hero Dog Awards, an annual campaign that recognizes heroes on both ends of the leash.
Favorite food: Blue Buffalo Grain-Free Chicken; Charlee Bear Dog Treats
Favorite activity: Chasing after tennis balls
Guilty pleasure: Anything with the scent of peanut butter
Hidden talent: Catching a tennis ball over his shoulder while running
Favorite local landmark: The park or zoo
Favorite toy: Tennis balls
Wendy Goossen and Max
There’s just something about seeing a large, mocha-colored Labradoodle bounding down a medical center hallway that brightens up the whole atmosphere. At Marshall Medical Center in Placerville, Max raises the spirits of each patient fighting cancer when he comes to work with his owner, Cancer Resource Center Director Wendy Goossen. For many patients, the treatment they receive is part medication and part love from the soft dog. “I love that Max makes so many [patients] smile. It really makes their day to have someone to hug,” Goossen says.
Thanks to initial funding from Wells Fargo and supplemental contributions from community members, Marshall Medical Center raised money for its pet therapy program. Once Goossen was approved for a canine therapy dog and realized the dog couldn’t shed, she was led straight to Max, who’s hypoallergenic so can be around patients with fur allergies.
The four-year old pup has been with Goossen since he was nine weeks old, when she and Max bonded especially well on one of Goossen’s visits to Brasken Labradoodles in San Luis Obispo. Now, Max visits the patients each day to make sure they feel loved and supported. Greeting the people who come through the door is his favorite thing to do, but he also loves to hang out with the patients receiving treatment.
On Max’s days off, he loves going hiking and playing in the water. Goossen says, “It’s so much fun to watch him love the outdoors and appreciate being in nature.”
Favorite food: Anything he can’t have
Favorite activity: Chasing balls
Guilty pleasure: Sneaking into the neighbor’s yard
Hidden talent: Swimming
Favorite local landmark: Historic Main Street in Placerville
Favorite toy: A monkey he’s had since puppyhood
Officer Gage Lawley and Eros
Don’t let Eros’ dashing good looks deceive you. This fierce K-9 officer on the Roseville Police Department loves tug-of-war, chicken, and justice. The handsome sable colored dog is originally from Germany and was sent to Canada where he was unfortunately injured.
In August 2010, Eros was transferred to California and paired with his owner, Officer Gage Lawley, where he underwent what is equivilent to the police academy for dogs—a 12-week intensive training session. In addition to initial certification, each K-9 team trains two days a month with other K-9 units in the region to stay sharp in the field.
“Eros is always wanting to work,” Officer Lawley says, and he appreciates that.
The canine is cross-trained in patrol and narcotics detection, which means he works on a patrol team and also detects narcotics in buildings, vehicles, open areas, and packages. Eros’ position was funded by drug asset forfeiture funds, so the dog is giving back by being a part of the squad. On occasion, Officer Lawley and Eros go to schools for demonstrations, and each time, Eros is a huge hit. Officer Lawley says what makes him most proud of the German shepherd is his ability “to be a ferocious, hardworking K-9, then go to a demonstration at a school and become a loving, regular dog.” Because of this, the dog is a reliable worker and even better pet. Officer Lawley could not have asked for a more perfect fit to his K-9 team.
Favorite food: Anything that tastes like chicken
Favorite activity: Working; playing tug-of-war
Guilty pleasure: Afternoon naps
Hidden talent: Dropping his toy in running water so he can chase and find it
Favorite local landmark: Sierra Nevada—he loves hiking
Favorite toy: Kong with rope through it
AWESOME ANIMAL SANCTUARIES
By Sharon Penny
Round up the family for a day trip to one of our region’s animal sanctuaries that give furry and feathered residents hope and plenty of room to roam.
Folsom City Zoo Sanctuary
A caring home for rescued domestic and wild animals. See mountain lions, coyotes, bears, peacocks, and even a tiger! Check out the new Barnyard Experience, too—an abode for the sanctuary’s horses, miniature donkeys, and zebu. The zoo is open Tuesday-Sunday from 9 a.m. 3 p.m. through August 31. 403 Stafford Street, Folsom, 916-351-3527, folsomzoofriends.org
Blackberry Creek Farm Animal Sanctuary
A home for rescued farm animals started by two middle school teachers. Visit with Bob the donkey, Blossom the Pig, Benjamin Franklin the turkey, Oscar Oswald the tortoise, Ethel Mae the chicken, and other sweet barnyard friends. Visitor days are held the first Sunday of most months from noon-2 p.m.; tours are free, but donations are welcome. 1170 Pinecroft Road, Colfax, 530-774-3027, blackberrycreek.org
One of the oldest and largest sanctuaries for farmed animals in the country, Animal Place is home to 200 permanent non-human residents including cows, pigs, chickens, sheep, goats, rabbits, and turkeys. Pig belly rubs (ahem, guided tours) are available Saturdays and Sundays through Fall. Check the calendar on their website for days and times (and make sure you pre-register). 17314 McCourtney Avenue, Grass Valley, 530-477-1757, animalplace.org