Celebrates People and Pets
Mary Ellen and Miss Wings
Mary Ellen
Tips 'n' Tales Newspaper Columnist with Miss Wings

Adoption Successes!
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Photo by Mary Ellen "Angel Scribe"
Bryan proudly shows off his newest adopted "child." Tina, is a Chihuahua-Poodle-Terrier.
Yes! A tiny-confused-mix, who weighs in at 1 pounds and is gilded in all that is cute!


Bryan and Linda's loving hearts led them to adopt and raise 9 sons.  Now that the boys are grown, and out on their own, Bryan and Linda have filled their home with two small adopted daughters. Doggy-daughters that is!

Their oldest, Annie, is an adorable 13 year-old long-haired Chihuahua and the newest arrival is baby Tina.  Not everyone has a real-life wind-up toy-dog, but Bryan and Linda do in Tina.

Linda phoned the Tips 'n' Tales hotline and quietly whispered into the telephone, "I don't want Bryan to hear that I am bragging about how cute Tina is again, but I had to tell you what she is doing."

It turns out that Tina, the size of a squirrel, and squirrels have something in common!  Like a squirrel hiding nuts, Tina hides her doggy biscuits (which are as big as she is) in Bryan's slippers and under their couch pillows. 

"Bryan has always wanted a dog to bring him his slippers. Last night, Tina dragged one of his slippers, which was bigger than she is across the room," described Linda. 
Spotting Tina in action, Bryan laughed, "This dog has potential."

"Tina is so tiny that she blends into shadows and becomes invisible," explains Linda. "We put a bell on her collar so we could find her in the house.  And because she is so small the extra-small dog collars and harnesses are too big!  We finally bought a guinea pig/ferret harness from the feed store that fits her perfectly."

Linda adds, "Apparently, if a collar or harness is too large for puppies, the extra space allows them to hook their teeth in under it, and choke them or break their jaw.  Now, she will not slip out of it, and her delicate neck will also be protected from harm."
Tina has a unique acrobatic talent for maneuvering over wet grass. Not wanting to get her feet wet, she draws her little back legs up, balances, and then walks on her two front legs, like a professional-dog-circus performer.   Tina must love this view of the world because she walks long distances across their yard in her hand-stand position.

"Tina has her full tail--all four skinny inches of it," laughs Linda. "Her little black tail is one of her many cute assets.  It is constantly swished back and forth, at a rapid speed like a piano's metronome, that has gone out of control. The other constant thing about Tina, is the smile on her face, and ours, as we watch her joyfully speed around our home on her four tiny legs."

On a side note: Linda has been researching the Internet and locating pets that need homes, and people that need pets.  She is so successful at matching them up, that her friends laugh and call her the "Pet Yenta!"  Linda is dedicated to the world of adoption in both people and pets -- she understands the joy that adopting creates in every ones' lives.
Photo by Mary Ellen "Angel Scribe"
Linda and Annie dressed in their Sunday Easter clothes.
The Secret Surprise!
Dear Reader,
I photographed both Linda and Bryan with their dogs at Easter with a plan in mind!
For a fun surprise for Bryan, Linda and I came up with the idea not to tell Bryan he was being featured in this week's newspaper column.  Linda was all excited waiting to stand by Bryan and watch his face when he saw himself in the newspaper.
Well, the surprise was on Linda too!  I also included her photo with Annie in this week's column, then hand-delivered the newspaper.  And boy were they both surprised!
Linda saw the newspaper first and wanted to see how her husband's photo looked, but when she also saw her own face, she laughed, "Oh, you are so sneaky!" as she smiled from ear to ear!
Then Linda took the newspaper to Bryan and he too was completely surprised.  It was a happy moment for them both to be featured with their dogs.  Now, they are waiting for half the town and their church to exclaim that they saw them in the newspaper.
Both Linda and Bryan can admit to their friends, "It was a complete surprise!" 
Making them both this happy, was like being Allan Funk on Candid Camera, waiting for them to get the full impact of a kind-surprise. 
Also, the newspaper made their photographs larger than the front page news stories, so that gave us all a big giggle at their new celebrity status in town!
Mary Ellen ^I^


"Flea collars are ineffective, and many contain toxic chemicals," reports Dr. Jean Hofve, DVM.
"The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) filed a lawsuit in a California Superior Court against 16 retailers and manufacturers of chemical flea collars (including Hartz, Zodiac, and Bio-Spot) claiming failure to warn consumers about exposure to toxic chemicals.
They are urging federal regulators to remove these products from the market.

NRDC tests revealed that two chemicals, in the flea collars, left residue - with sufficient risks of cancer and neurological damage to children--as much as 1,000 times higher than levels established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Pet owners have complained that dogs and cats wearing these flea collars had stopped eating or drinking.  Their symptoms include; vomiting, twitching and diarrhea.

NRDC found unacceptably high lingering residues on most dogs and all cats for TCVP, and unacceptably high propoxur residue levels on all dogs.
The residues were higher than those allowed for children in contact with the pets.

NRDC did not address the potential harm to the animal wearing the collar 24 hours a day, but especially given cats' sensitivity to many chemicals as well as herbs, it is a given that cats should never, ever have a flea collar put on them."  More information-Subscribe to Dr. Jean's Cat's Walk newsletter,

"Just because a product is sold in stores doesn't mean it's safe," said Dr. Gina Solomon, a physician and a toxicologist with the environmental group and an author of the study reported in The San Francisco Chronicle: 
San Francisco Chronicle --Flea Collar Information

Fleas are epidemic in the Pacific North West. Searching for a safe flea alternative? Mad About Organics, a Eugene company, created a safe line of flea/tick products.  Safe enough for pets and children...and customer testimonials report how the product has given their pets a much sought after result as well as relief.

Their product deviates from the traditional chemical flea and tick treatments by producing a natural scent field which confuses the fleas and ticks from finding cats, dogs and horses.
Shaggy Dog Tales Contest

Enter your heartwarming or funny travel adventures with dogs, wagging tails and paws, where you've been, how you got there, funny things that happened along the way, tips about what your pooch packed in their suitcase, extreme hotel amenities you were given, what you and your pooch learned and wonderful hot spots that other Dog owners MUST check out!

Stories are limited to under 1200 words.

Contest ends August 15, 2009.  Winners will receive pet spa products, toys, treats and other items in their prize package.

Readers Tips are appreciated!
Contribute your pet's health and safety secrets.

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