Category Archives: Animal Love

Editor’s Corner – When unconditional love is suddenly gone: Coping with the loss of a beloved pet


Izzy Boo

I’m sure I don’t have to point out that there have been many publicized deaths in the United States lately. From mass shootings to one-on-one occurrences, they all seem senseless to me. It may seem odd for a journalist to say this, but I honestly have not willingly watched one single news program on TV (sometimes I’m trapped in a doctor’s office with the news on, but I try to ignore it) for over 25 years. This “news fast” has helped with my mood over the years, and if something really big happens, I’ll hear about it from family or friends.

The one thing that I could never prepare for was the death of my 15 year-old dog, Izzy Boo.

I swear – sometimes it’s easier to lose a person than a pet. Dogs (and cats, when they feel like it) give you unconditional love and are always excited to see you when you come home. Sure, they may need to be walked every few hours or wake you up in the middle of the night to be fed, but, in the grand scheme of things, having a pet delivers many benefits the human owner.

There’s even a branch of therapy called “pet therapy” in which trained professionals bring well-trained dogs, cats, pot-bellied pigs and other sweet creatures to visit people in the hospital or even in hospice. Petting a dog or cat has been scientifically shown to lower blood pressure, slow down heart rates that are too high, lower respiration rates and generally help the person feel calmer. And if you’ve ever owned a pet that you were well bonded with, you know that they know if you don’t feel well and generally follow you around because they have an instinct to help.

Izzy Boo was a Japanese Chin, which is not a well-known breed in the U.S. I remember picking him up from the Japanese Chin Rescue Society. The lady that had been fostering him started crying when I took him, and over the years, I found out why.

Izzy Boo had “never met a stranger.” He loved people, other dogs, cats and even my pet turtles. I don’t think he had a mean bone in his body. Sometimes I wish he had been a jerk because maybe his passing wouldn’t hurt so bad.

Izzy Boo came to us when he was about three years old. He was a smarty pants, and learned all kinds of tricks, like “high five,” sit, shake and he’d also run in circles on command (“Chin Spins”).

He was with me through my daughter growing up and moving out, my own divorce and moving away and he spent his last few years as a companion to my mother, who moved with me.

One Friday, we took him to the vet for what we thought was allergies. It turned out that he was dealing with massive heart failure, and so we had to make the difficult decision to send him to Sweet Dog Heaven. I couldn’t stay in the room, but my mom did.

When a person passes away, it can be sad, tragic or even expected, but it is never easy. Funerals are for the living, as we like to think that our person has gone to a better place. But when a pet dies, even though we take them in knowing that we’ll probably outlive them, it can make the world seem silent and empty.

I hope you’re chasing squirrels in Dog Heaven, Izzy Boo, and that you know that you were loved.

If you have recently lost a pet and are having trouble coping, click HERE for some tips and compassion.

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‘Clear the Shelters’ event at Grapevine Animal Shelter August 17

We are just one week away from the annual Clear the Shelters event at Grapevine Animal Shelter and Adoption Center on Saturday, August 17. Adoption fees will be waived for all available dogs and cats in Grapevine. Whether you’re looking for your first pet, or just want an addition to your family, come check out the animals we have ready and waiting for adoption.

Our shelter will be open 9:30-5:00 on Saturday, August 17 for Clear the Shelters. The address is: 500 Shady Brook Drive, Grapevine, TX 76051. Hope to see you there!


Southwest Airlines to allow miniature horses as service animals in new policy

By: FOX 10 Staff

Southwest Airlines Finds Five Planes In Its 737 Fleet In Need Of Repair

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

PHOENIX (KSAZ) — Come September 17, people will be able to carry miniature horses onboard Southwest flights as trained service animals, according to airline officials.

Officials announced the policy change, via a statement on its website on Tuesday. In the statement, officials name miniature horses, along with dogs and cats, as some of the most common service animals that will be accepted onboard. Passengers, however, will need to be able to provide credible verbal assurance that the animal is a trained service animal

Read more from FOX4…

Grapevine Animal Shelter offers low-cost vaccinations


When: Saturday, September 8 & Saturday, November 3 from 10am – 12pm

Where: Grapevine Animal Shelter and Adoption Center: 500 Shady Brook Dr.


  • Rabies: $5 
  • DHPP: $10 
  • Bordetella: $10 
  • Heartworm Test: $20 
  • Heartworm Preventative: $25-$35 
  • Canine Influenza: $15 
  • Lepto $10
  • Lyme: $15


  • Rabies: $5
  • FVRCP: $10 
  • FelV: $10 
  • FelV/FIV Test: $20

Other Services:

  • General Dewormer Strongid-T $5.00 
  • Tick/Flea Prevention $12.00 
  • Tapeworm Dewormer Droncit $10.00 
  • Home Again Microchip $30.00 

No appointment necessary! Services provided by Texas Coalition for Animal Protection:

For more information, call (817) 410-3370 or visit


Hot Dog! Grapevine Animal Shelter gives tips for keeping your pet cool this summer

There is only ONE REASON you should ever leave a dog in a hot car, and Alan from Grapevine Animal Shelter and Adoption Center is about to show you why. In addition to the dangers of hot cars, please keep in mind that streets, sidewalks, and patios can also damage your pets’ paws, so please be mindful of the heat. If you aren’t comfortable walking barefoot, neither will your best friend. Stay cool, Grapevine!

Migration Celebration focuses on the joy of nature


Pet an alligator at Migration Celebration!

Come experience the sights, sounds, and the joys of nature all for free. Watch the “Birds of Prey” program and witness a Peregrine Falcon soaring above then diving at speeds in excess of 150 mph toward its prey. You can catch a fish in a stocked pond, touch sea creatures, pet an alligator, a snake, or a turtle. Let a butterfly land on your nose in the butterfly tent. Net insects in tall grass, or view critters under a microscope. Target practice with a bow and arrow or a BB gun. These are just a few of the free family-friendly activities you can see and do April 16 and 17 at the San Bernard National Wildlife Refuge during the annual Migration Celebration festival.

Other activities include an open wagon tour along the ponds or a marsh buggy ride through a swampy section of the refuge. Experienced naturalists lead each trip. Visitors may see alligators, bobcats, deer, and several bird species including grebes, herons, egrets, gallinules, and any number of migrating species heading north. Walk along a trail through a hardwood forest to see Texas’ largest live oak tree. Kids 12 to 92 can kayak in a bayou.

The exhibition building will feature the nature photo contest entries, Junior Duck Stamp entries, a children’s art table, our nature store, a bake sale, food service, and exhibits from many local and regional conservation education groups. For free family adventure visit the San Bernard National Wildlife Refuge April 16, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. or April 17, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and see what this amazing refuge has to offer.

Migration Celebration is sponsored by the Friends of Brazoria Wildlife Refuges and supported by the Texas Mid-Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex. For more information, event schedules, and directions to Migration Celebration visit

Fall in Love with a Shelter Pet Event Oct. 24

12039181_878030252250515_8387647273755788269_nFall in love with a shelter pet event – On Saturday, Oct. 24 from 1 – 4 p.m. at the Independence Dog Park, 3919 Liberty Drive. The event is free and features $70 adoptions, a bounce house, refreshments and pet family photos. There will be on-site pet adoptions for $70. Fee includes pet licensing, microchipping, vaccinations, a general health check and spay/neutering.

Stop by the dog park and fall in love with your next family pet. If you have adopted a pet from the Pearland Adoption Center or any area animal shelter, bring them by for a reunion and to play at the dog park with other adopted pets. Then get your free family photo. Event flyer

Thinking about getting a pet? Millions of companion animals in shelters across America are just waiting for a special home like yours. Navigating the adoption process isn’t as hard as you think. We can help you find the perfect pet and discover how amazing adopting a pet can be. When you’re looking to add a pet to your life, consider adopting one of our homeless animals. Whether you want a puppy or a more mature dog, a purebred or a one-of-a-kind mixed breed, even a rabbit or hamster, your shelter has the best selection of animals anywhere—all screened for good health and behavior.

The Pearland Adoption Center is your top source for a new pet, and our pet-care experts have compiled all the information you’ll need to select a pet who matches your lifestyle, and more.

Interested in volunteering?
The City of Pearland Adoption Center is seeking volunteers to walk dogs, help with cats and assist with off-site adoptions. Volunteers will also help residents search for lost pets, take photos of animals in need of a home, clean adoption center facilities, and more.  Click here to register to volunteer.

Click here for a list of pets at at the Adoption Center.

Adoption Application

Find Pearland Pets on Facebook


One in three pets will get lost during their lifetime. Microchipping is the best way to ensure your pet finds their way back home. The Clinic will be held monthly on the 2nd Saturday.

Date:             September 12, 2015 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Location:     Animal Control & Adoption Center, 2002 Old Alvin Road

Cost:             $10, includes 1-year free registration with Home Again National Pet Recovery Database.

Houston World Series of Dog Shows Opens July 15

Dog-Show-Logo-Vert-1024x692Animal lovers may think a dog show with thousands of beautiful and beguiling canines of every size and shape simply couldn’t get any better. But they would be wrong.

Taking place at NRG Center, July 15 through 19, the 38th annual Houston World Series of Dog Shows is adding two events that will serve up new thrills for spectators. The first is the Barn Hunt. Open to any dog, this competition tests the hunting skills of canines, as they sniff through haystacks to locate a live rat secured safely inside a metal tube. A second new event is Creative Dog Grooming. This mesmerizing exhibition showcases the talents of extreme dog groomers equipped with colored chalk, hair spray and an overabundance of imagination, as they scissor-cut their dogs into works of art and weirdness. Here white poodles become pandas, ponies, lions, giraffes, pirates of the Caribbean or favorite cartoon or video game characters, right before the eyes of amazed onlookers.

Show Chair Tom Pincus explains, “We are always striving to bring new aspects of the dog world to the attention of the public to help them be more appreciative of the joy that dogs bring and more responsible pet owners.” He continues, “We are also focused on adding events that are open to any dog, not just show dogs, such as AKC® My Dog Can Do That!, Weight Pull and Barn Hunt.”

Paws in the Park in PearlandOf course, the dog show’s traditional and ever-popular offerings will reappear. Meet the Breeds provides those longing to become pet parents an opportunity to literally get their hands on breeds of interest and talk to experts about them. Conformation (breed judging) presents more than 150 common and exotic breeds, as they parade around looking beautiful and winning prizes.

For the sports lover, the Performance Events feature athletic dogs in action: obstacle-course-running dogs (agility), hurdle-jumping dogs (flyball), dancing dogs (canine musical freestyle), flying-disc- catching dogs (Frisbee®) and sled-dragging dogs (weight pull). In the AKC® My Dog Can Do That! trials, both dogs and owners get some exercise, as they test-run an agility course while receiving instruction from experts.

But some of the most beautiful dogs at the show don’t move at all: they are Houston-area school children’s winning entries in the Dr. Mari Jon Filla Student Art Competition and Exhibition. Don’t forget your own most-beautiful-dog-in-the-world. Surprise it with some special goodies — blingy leashes and collars, comfy beds and fancy treats — all for sale at the McScotty Market. And if your pup needs a new custom home, bid on a one-of-a-kind doghouse designed, built and donated for the 11th Annual Designer Doghouse Competition and Auction. All proceeds benefit homeless animals at the Citizens for Animal Protection shelter.

The Houston World Series of Dog Shows, sanctioned by the American Kennel Club, supervised by Onofrio Dog Shows and sponsored by Purina® ProPlan®, is Houston’s must-see dog event, attracting more than 12,000 entries and 40,000 spectators, participants and vendors.

Held at NRG Center, the Houston World Series of Dog Shows is an easy drive from Pearland minutes off Highway 288.

When:  9 a.m.-3 p.m. Wednesday, July 15; 8 a.m.-7 p.m. Thursday-Sunday, July 19, 2015
Where: NRG Center, 8400 Kirby Drive.
More Info/Tickets: $15, ages 13-54; $10, 55 and older; free for children 12 and younger with an adult, Parking is $12 – go to for more information.

National Pet Fire Safety Day Tips