Pet Tips 'n' Tales

Dog Drive-By-Bark Program

Photo by Mary Ellen "Angel Scribe"
LaDee, an All American Dog, is on a mission!  She takes her job seriously!  Note her arms on the fence gate! Marie and LaDee both dedicate long hours to community service making others smile, and they do it with two very different methods!  LaDee is a volunteer in the city's first Dog Drive-By-Bark program!


TALES

Marie and her dog, LaDee, (Lady) both believe in "...community service, that there is much to do, and to become involved."

Marie is passionate about Cottage Grove's Historic Museum's new grant to repaint the 1897 building, and she is instrumental in displaying the recently discovered magnificent century-old dresses.

Marie is also on the Historic Landmarks Commission and has worked on the Planning  Commission, the city's Water to Woods report, and as the director of the Bohemia Gold Mining Museum for five years. Oh, and in her spare time, she is involved with Kiwanis and the Prospectors and Golddiggers promotional organization.

LaDee, "is no lady" laughs Marie.  She says LaDee adds humor and warmth to her life. Just looking at LaDee's cute face is enough to make everyone smile, but don't let her good looks fool you! LaDee is also a moving force
in town.

Apparently LaDee, like Marie, is infamous for her service to the community.  Her dog-job has purpose!  It is designed to make everyone smile and feel important. 
 
"The children walking to school love talking to LaDee through our chain link fence," says Marie. "When this story is printed, the children will be thrilled to see how famous their four-paw celebrity friend LaDee is!

Everyday, at the same time, a male driver in a red four-door car drives slowly by our home.  He is taking his four look-alike white dogs for a 'drive-by-bark.' Even if LaDee is in the house, she insists on being in the yard to 'greet' them," laughs Marie.

"As the driver approaches our yard, he honks the horn, which alerts LaDee to run outside.  The creative man stops his car, and all his dogs bounce around inside his car and excitedly bark at LaDee.  LaDee enjoys their noisy visits as much as his dog's do, and his dogs obviously look forward to having LaDee as their daily entertainment.

Another lady, in a green station wagon, drives by our home with her dog in the back seat.  She slows her car along our long fence, and her dog leans all the way forward and puts his head out the front window to bark at LaDee. It is fun watching the dogs bark their 'Hellos' to each other; because the dogs obviously love this vocal exercise.

Three young male neighbors purposely gun their vehicle's motors as they approach my yard.  They are challenging LaDee to play.  When she hears their challenge, she races their cars down the well-worn path along the 100 feet of fence.  When I look up, I see the drivers driving away with big smiles on their faces.

Several months ago, a man in a white pickup truck often drove by with two dogs, one was older than the other.  He would park beside our fence so his dogs could chat-bark with LaDee.  Then they stopped coming.  I recently saw the man and asked if he was OK. He said, 'I no longer have the heart to drive by anymore.  My old dog died and it brings back too many memories of the fun we had.  My dogs loved their visits with LaDee. They looked forward to them; it was the only time I could get my dogs to be active was when they 'played' with LaDee.'

That is when I learned the true value of LaDee's influence in our neighborhood and that she is a great asset to the city's first Drive-By-Bark program.

I have no idea how old LaDee is; she was adopted her from a local pet-foster home.
 
Somewhere in her young life, she was definitely abused. The sound of a belt being pulled from pants still terrifies her.  She is by no way a perfect dog, but she makes me laugh and she is a cartoon character.  You can read her face, see what she is thinking, and you know there is some mischievous adventure about to happen!

I love watching the people who slowly drive along our fence while LaDee races them the full length of our yard; I can see the drivers smile as they drive on. 
 
Now I ask you!  What kind of magic do any us have to make others consistently smile? An  added benefit for me is that these drivers are all exercising my dog!"

Photo by Mary Ellen "Angel Scribe"
Cute and Adorable LaDee is proud of her successful plan!
 

TIPS

"As the rains and cold weather approach, keep your pets' safety and comfort in mind," says Janetta Overholser, president of Humane Society of Cottage Grove.  "Prepare outside animals a warm bed out of the wind, rain, and cold. Supply daily fresh water.  If their drinking water freezes, break the ice so the animals can drink.  All living creatures need access to fresh clean water."
 
Caution: Snow and ice can freeze to animals' feet, so check their feet when you come back from a walk."
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