August is National Dog Month, so pamper your pooches as usual

It’s still the season of the kitten and will be for a couple of months more. But let’s paws for a word about National Dog Month, for which August has been designated by our doggies’ friends at Milk-Bone.

How do you celebrate, or at least observe, National Dog Month? You do nothing out of the ordinary, particularly if you have the bond with Bowser that I suspect that you do. You and I both know that the dog has no idea that an entire month has been devoted to them—to them, every day is special. Especially if it’s spent with you.

But we’ll play along, because there are a few special things that you can do in Long Beach for and with your best buddy, to wit:

  • Leash up and go down to one of Long Beach’s dog parks or to Rosie’s Dog Beach! It’s August, and a perfect time to splash around. Bring the sunscreen for the wet nose, especially if it’s a pale color, and be sure that your dog is vaccinated. Hopefully, they’re fixed, too—if not, please respect the other dogs and humans, if ya know what I mean.
  • Few sights are sadder than that of a dog at a restaurant or café waiting outside for their people. It’s not particularly safe for the dog, either. If you’re going out for a meal or a snack, check out Long Beach’s pet-friendly restaurants with patios. Best of Long Beach 2022 lists its top five, but they’re all over town, everywhere! Type “patio dog friendly dining Long Beach” in the search bar, and you’ll come up with more than you can wag a tail at. Since it’s National Dog Month, you might consider feeding them from the table. Or not.
  • You really need an excuse to buy your buddy a new toy? Take your dog into the pet-supply store to choose their own—they all welcome pets. Check out Best of Long Beach 2022’s top five pet-supply stores, and have your dog drag you in.
  • We said to take the dog to dine with you, but how about picking up something made especially for them? PJ’s Pet Café on Seventh Street, which also has daycare, and The Dog Bakery in Belmont Shore both whip up treats, cakes and “desserts” using healthy ingredients. If your dog allows it, you could safely share it with them.
  • It’s not all fun and games, of course. If your dog hasn’t been to the vet for a checkup in a while or if they’re due for their shots, make an appointment. They may not thank you for it, but they’ll be healthy as they can be. And that’s thanks enough.

OK, now it’s time for the real reason for this article—giving homeless dogs a reason to celebrate. Our shelter’s overcrowded with pets, particularly big dogs, and the volunteers and staff have their hands and arms full with their care. Some of the doggies have been there for months, but every one is in a public shelter or a rescue because someone didn’t want them. If you’re ready to adopt or will agree to foster, come to our shelter first. When you’re an approved adopter, start celebrating National Dog Month, and don’t stop with August.

Virtually pets

Here are a few for you to meet and greet from our shelter at Long Beach Animal Care Services, 7700 E. Spring St., Long Beach at the entrance to El Dorado Park. No parking fee for shelter visitors. Email [email protected] to speed up the adoption or fostering process. Adoption hours are Wednesday–Sunday, 11 a.m.–3 p.m.

white pit bull with brown ears and circle around left eye lies on the ground with his tongue out.

His name’s Goliath, but Chewbacca or Baby Huey would have been more appropriate. If any David were to approach this Goliath, this 4-year-old cuddler’s waggy tail would knock him over and he’d grab the slingshot and lie down to chew on it. Goliath is never happier than with a stuffy, and he’s easygoing, bordering on lazy, as one adoring volunteer put it. If a big, goofy pit bull is your idea of a companion, come meet Goliath!

reddish malamute with white muzzle, chest and legs sits tall and looks outward. He sits on the ground.

Speaking of gentle giants, we have Clifford, as in “the Big Red Dog.” Ol’ Cliffie—actually, he’s just 4—would do well with a family with older kids or just adults, as well as someone familiar with the malamute breed. Clifford is an old soul and would love to share his life with you.He bonds strongly with his people, walks easily on a leash, and loves to just be close and lean in for a head scratch or get up on the couch for snuggles. He doesn’t enjoy being left alone, but he did OK in a crate in a former home. Baths are not his favorite activity, mind.

gray pit bull with white chest and white streak between eyes sits on grass and looks longingly at camera

Tank is just a big, happy boy ready to share a home with people who want a walking partner, a playing partner, a reading companion, a TV couch potato buddy, or any or all of these things. He recently learned how to fetch, and the volunteers report a 50% success rate in bringing the ball back! Tank is a striking, metal-gray 4-year-old American pit-bull who’ll be ever so grateful to have a forever home—in fact, he’ll Tank you demonstrably!

K9 Kismet Rescue

Here’s Cowboy, who’s being fostered by K9 Kismet rescue.

large black dog with white chest, dapper in a blue bowtie, sits tall and looks at camera. He's sitting in a backyard.

Cowboy was doing his latest rodeo at Long Beach Animal Care Services when a K9 Kismet volunteer noted his affectionate, gentle and loyal nature. Right now, he’s home on the range with a loving foster family. They refer to the 100-pound, 3-year-old mastiff mix as a lap dog—they call him a little dog trapped in a big dog’s body! Cowboy melts his fosters’ hearts in whatever he does—when walking with them, he nudges their hands to tell them he’s enjoying himself; gives polite kisses; and softly takes treats. He loves the company of people and dogs alike, but he’s also content at home alone with his squeaky toys and frequent naps. Cowboy’s foster family doesn’t really want to see him ride off into the sunset, but they know he’s ready for a forever, never-to-roam home.

If you’re spurred on to ride the range with Cowboy, fill out an application here!

Visitors are often confused by the configuration of the P.D. Pitchford Companion Animal Village, which is home to both our city shelter and to spcaLA, an independent, nonprofit animal-welfare and rescue. I won’t waste words trying to help navigate, but please know that there are wonderful animals in both venues. But I beg you, check Long Beach Animal Care Services first. It’s the city shelter and city funded—underfunded, in fact. The animals come in from everywhere, with every need. It’s been overcrowded in there for a long time—the pets need to go home, and the volunteers have worked so hard to get the wonderful dogs ready.

But while you’re there, drop in to spcaLA, too. Their dogs also want to go to the party.

tan pit bull with white chest and wearing yellow bandanna smiles at camera, mouth open

Hashbrown, for instance, is another gentle giant who thinks he belongs in your lap! He’s 5 years old and is as sweet as pie, with big puppy dog eyes that will melt you to the core. He enjoys walks, playing with water—he’d love Rosie’s Dog Beach—and then get all quiet and nap and cuddle. If you think Hashbrown is made to your order, email [email protected] and mention that you’d like an order of Hashbrown.

Again, spcaLA’s hours are the same as LBACS’—11 a.m.–3 p.m. Potential adopters can save time by filling out an adoption application online.

Great furballs of fun!

Long Beach Animal Care Services’ Adoption Waggin’ will roll in, and the volunteers will show you all the wonderful animals aboard.

Pet Supplies Plus pet adoption event: Saturday, Aug. 13, 11 a.m.–2 p.m., Pet Supplies Plus, 2086 Bellflower Blvd., Long Beach, adoption fees apply

Long Beach Animal Care Services’ Adoption Waggin’ will roll out to this neat pet-supply store! Choose your cat or dog, and then take them shopping for everything they’ll ever need and then some!

 

FOLBA’s 33rd Anniversary Celebration and Casino Event: Friday, Aug. 26, 7 p.m., The Modern, 2801 E. Spring St., Long Beach, tickets $50, $75 and $100, see details and purchase tickets here

The most venerable animal-welfare organization in Long Beach is celebrating 33 years of helping our city’s pets: funding surgical procedures at the shelter, paying for countless spay/neuter procedures, giving grants to animal rescues for their operations, funding special projects for clinics and shelters—too many to count on the toe beans of four paws. As you can tell by the continuing need in our community and communities everywhere, Friends of Long Beach Animals is nowhere near done working; however, they have lots of good stuff to celebrate! To combine the two, FOLBA is proud to present a night of casino games and fundraising (dress to impress!). Enjoy a full bar, participate in raffles, stuff your face with food, meet some adoptables and two beneficiaries of FOLBA’s efforts, and have a chance to be on Pawz TV. All money raised will help fund FOLBA’s good works. Hey, if you’re going to throw your money away at the craps table, what better way?

Benny the Cat’s fifth birthday party and fundraiser: Saturday, Aug. 27, 11 a.m.–3 p.m., Marina Community Center, 151 Marina Drive, Seal Beach, tickets $20, children 10 and younger free

Benny, the brave little cat who nearly lost his life to domestic abuse, is now living the life and is ready to celebrate his fifth birthday. He wants you to come to the party! He promises games, raffles, live entertainment, vendors, food, party favors and kittens for adoption. Of course, he’ll be the guest of honor. Purrrr-chase your tickets here! All money raised at Benny’s fifth birthday party will help his fellow kitties at Helen Sanders CatPAWS, the organization that paid for his surgery. That’s the only birthday present he’s asked for!

A helping paw

Council district 8 announces 60-day amnesty for new or late pet licensing fees for designated residents

A resolution introduced by Councilman Al Austin and passed by the City Council provides a temporary amnesty program that waives a first-time pet licensing fee and late penalty fee for an expired pet license for residents of Community Development Block Grant-designated areas in Long Beach can apply to an HUD grant program that will waive fees for new and late pet licenses until Aug. 23. Access this map to determine whether you live in a CDBG zone, or call 562-570-1326 or email [email protected].

12 months of pets!

 The pet calendars are getting an early start! Enter your own calendar grrrls or purrrrls and help fund rescues and their good works!

Show Us Your Kitties!, Helen Sanders CatPAWS, votes $5 each, reserved days $15 each, closes Aug. 20

Help Helen Sanders CatPAWS raise money to save cats from public shelters! Submit a photo of your kitty, or vote for your favorite feline in the contest. You can also submit a kitty photo for a special day on the calendar. The top vote winner at the conclusion of the contest will have their choice of month to feature their cat as a pinup pm on the calendar. The next 12 top-vote recipients will become Helen Sanders CatPAWS Calendar Cats for each of the remaining calendar months between January 2023 and January 2024. Up to six runner-up photos after the top 13 vote recipients will be featured with larger photos and name on the front cover! Enter now at this link!

Foster for awhile—or furever!

woman in denim jacket holds little white cat with tabby ears. kennels with kittens are in the background.

If you’ve always wanted a pet but aren’t sure if you’re ready for a lifetime (the animal’s) commitment, or if you’re past the pet-roommate days for any reason, fostering might be a great way to go, especially with one or more of the kittens popping up during kitten season. Every one of the organizations listed below is in desperate need of fosters who’ll social them and help save their little lives. Who knows—maybe one of those lives will change your mind about the not-ready-for-roommate thing!

These nonprofits also regularly feature cat, dog and rabbit adoptions. As of now, adoptions are mainly by appointment. Click on the links for each rescue in case of updates or changes. These organizations operate through donations and grants, and anything you can give would be welcome. Please suggest any Long Beach-area rescues to add to the list.

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Kate Karp is the Pets Columnist for the Long Beach Post covering the world of animal activism, pet adoptions and lots of cute cats. She’s called Long Beach home since 1994 and has written for the Post for about 10 years. Kate’s day job is as a copyeditor, which she discovered a love for during her 30-year tenure as a teacher. She describes the job as “like taking the rough edges off a beautiful sculpture.”
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