Nearing the Home Stretch

National Purebred Dog Day Kickstarter Project

From Susi Szeremy, the "creator" of the National Purebred Dog Day webpage Kickstarter project (the subject of my last post):

Technically speaking, the final few days of a campaign are probably the real "home stretch" of a campaign, but with almost 30 days under our belt and only 12 more to go, it's hard not to feel the tingle of anticipation that comes near the completion a journey. Today was a really good day, probably the best since we met our goal, but it didn't start out that way. Two donations were canceled this morning with no explanation, and it's hard not to wonder why. As is (sic) to balance the scales, a slew of donations came later in the day, not coincidentally, I think, after learning that one of you shared the link to this page on scores of email lists to which you subscribe, blogs which you read, and on Facebook pages.

Keep it up, it truly makes a difference! Sharing this link ( with friends, relatives, colleagues, fellow dog owners and neighbors by posting it on Facebook pages, in correspondences and on email lists is how an idea becomes a grassroots effort. As purebred dog owners and ethical breeders, our voices need to be heard in the conversation about responsible dog ownership, and this campaign is getting noticed. From a day that no one heard of, to a campaign that's 122% funded with nearly two weeks to go IS a noteworthy thing - and you've been an integral part of it. If you donated, you are a thread in the fabric of our success. If you shared the link, mentioned the campaign to even one other person, or sent me a "pep talk" note, you are part of this. I hope you feel good about it because I'm so very proud of the community we've become. I guess you could call us "Purebred Dog Nation."

Keep it up, keep it rolling, keep on keeping on. You rock. Every single one of you.


MY NOTE: If you donated - please know your help is greatly appreciated. Purebred dogs fill a niche, and each one has their own purpose. Most of you know I own Dalmatians. How many of you know Dalmatians have been used not only as coach dogs and fire truck dogs, but also as hunting dogs (pointing and retrieving), hounds (sight and scent), guard dogs (part of being a coach dog), and show substantial herding instinct? Oh yes - there are other dogs who can fill those roles, but how many of them have the flair and distinctiveness of the spots that make a Dalmatian what it is?

Have you ever seen a blue heeler (Australian Cattle Dog) work it's charges? They go in low, actually bite the hock of recalcitrant cattle, then instinctively either flatten themselves to the ground or back out of the way to avoid the resulting kick from the animal. This is an ability unique to the ACD. This is what gives the breed it's nickname of "heeler." Did you know this "nipping" or "heeling" is, at least in part, attributable to the influence of the Dalmatian when the ACD was not yet a well-established breed?

Nearly every one of you has heard of Snoopy - that famous beagle who owns a young boy named Charlie Brown. Snoopy loves his dog house, his food bowl, and most of all - his adventures as the Red Baron. The history of the breed is shrouded in mist - but it may date back as far as before the Roman occupation of Britannia - what is now England.

The Chesapeake Bay Retriever is the state dog of Maryland. It is a uniquely American breed, developed within the last 150-175 years. Dogs were selected for specific traits that some hunters found lacking in Labradors and other retrieving breeds. Chessies have a unique wavy coat that sheds water so well that a dog can retrieve a duck from a lake, come on shore, shake off - and be completely dry. The breed's love for water is legendary. In turn - the Chessie has had an influence on the development of another sporting/hunting breed - the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever, lovingly called the Toller.

Purebred dogs have a place in this world. It doesn't matter if that dog came from a reputable breeder, a shelter, or a rescue group. It doesn't even matter if your purebred Chihuahua or Poodle came from a pet shop in the mall. What does matter is there is a place in the world for these dogs, and without them - we would be all the poorer for it.

I know Christmas is around the corner. I've spent the last week planning gifts and changing my mind and filling cyber shopping carts, waiting for my payday. I also had to wait until payday to make my own donation to NPDD. But I did it. I wanted to give more ... I would have gladly given my entire paycheck.

The minimum donation is only $1. For $5 - you get a sticker that says "I &heart; Purebred Dogs." And if you plaster that sticker to your forehead and send Susi a picture - I can guarantee she will publicly thank you. ;)

I know Christmas is coming. I know we are all thinking about our friends and relatives and parties and recipes and food and family ... Surely some of you can find $1 worth of thought for purebred dogs. That's all we ask. Any more is up to you.

National Purebred Dog Day

National Purebred Dog Day Kickstarter Project
(NOTE: all text is taken from the above linked Kickstarter site.)

>National Purebred Dog Day celebrates the diversity, heritage and contributions of the purebred dog, and it needs a home: A web site.

Purebred dogs are living legacies of the cultures that created them for a reason. Historically, these dogs worked alongside their people and provided them companionship. Today, the service of these breeds continues; they are guide dogs and service dogs, work in search and rescue, help put food on the table, serve alongside the military and police, and are guardians of home, hearth, and livestock. Always, they are the heart beat of a companion near and dear to us.

Currently, there is no day that celebrates the contributions of purebred dogs even as there exists a National Mutt Day, National Rescue Day, National Puppy Day, National Dog Day - even a National Poop Scooping Day.

All dogs should be valued, whatever their ancestry. The purpose bred dog and the predictability of its breed, however, should be cherished and preserved. Each breed is indelibly etched in the history of the culture that created it just as surely as that culture's music, art, and language.

National Purebred Dog Day was launched on Facebook a year ago where its page has served as a forum for education and interaction. This community of dog owners, however, is outgrowing the Facebook platform. A web site is needed. This Kickstarter campaign seeks to raise the funds to design and build this website, and maintain it until it becomes self-sufficient through e-commerce. It is Kickstarter reality that if our goal isn't met, we walk away without a dime.

A resolution asking that May 1 be marked as National Purebred Dog Day was submitted to the Minority Whip of the State of Colorado Senate a few months ago. It has an excellent chance of passing early next year making a web site a practical goal.

How will the new website be different from Facebook?

In some ways, it won't be different at all. Facebook offers a wonderful platform where information can be presented and discussed, and I want to continue that on the new web site. Facebook, however, is subject to algorithms and profit-driven changes that impact the experience of its fans. Not everything that is posted on National Purebred Dog Day gets seen by every fan, and I want to offer more consistent options as well as features that will give purebred dog owners a voice. National Purebred Dog Day will always have a presence on Facebook (and soon, Twitter), but it will serve to drive traffic to the new website where "the experience" will be more complete.

Below are just a few examples of what's been done on Facebook, features that will continue on the new website:

  • Owners are asked to share their insights about living with their breed so that the rest of us might learn.
  • Surprising information is shared about our breeds.
  • We learn about the incredible adaptations some breeds have in order to live and work in their unique environments.
  • The tradition started on Facebook of giving "dog artists" exposure will continue and expand on the new website.

Has National Purebred Dog Day resonated?

On May 1, 2013 (the very first National Purebred Dog Day), Facebook fans were invited to submit pictures of their dogs appearing with an "I (heart) Purebred Dogs" sign. Hundreds of pictures were received from every part of the United States, as well as from Australia, Europe, South America, and even Mongolia.

I &heart; Purebred Dogs

The "numbers," however, were more telling: At mid-day of May 1, 2013, the AKC placed a post noting National Purebred Dog Day on its Facebook page. Chris Walker from the AKC was kind enough to share AKC’s internal numbers from that one post:

  • On Facebook, 1,028,096 people were reached;
  • There were 74,340 likes, comments & shares;
  • 60,792 “Likes;"
  • 39,968 on Post;
  • 20,824 on Shares;
  • Post Clicks 10,711
  • It was the highest engaged post of the week on Twitter with hundreds of images being sent to the AKC.
  • Over a million people expressed interest in a day that hadn't existed six months before. Tweets were retweeted, posts were shared, and friends told other friends. The “significance” of the day gained momentum as the day went on;
  • Over ten national columnists “picked up” the National Purebred Dog Day story, including Psychology Today online. An on-line website of national holidays even listed May 1st as National Purebred Dog Day (alongside Chocolate Parfait Day!)

Yes, the day resonated.

The Perks:

If you've gotten this far, you love your dog as much as we love ours, and endorsing this endeavor is reward enough. Still, we want to "return the love" with an outward sign of your support, whether you got your dog from an ethical breeder, adopted it from a shelter, or from breed rescue. Click National Purebred Dog Day Kickstarter Project to see what options NPDD offers in thanks for your generosity.

Disappearing Act

Has something happened to Pleo that has caused entire posts, or at least anything beyond two lines, to disappear? The links to the posts are still in my "Entries" but when I click through - there's little to nothing there.

Most devastating is my Rubies and Pearls post. I thought I also had it saved in Evernote - but it's not there either. I really hope it's on one of my laptops or my old desktop.

Grumble ...

Now I've forgotten how to link to pictures in pleo "rooms" ... Have I been gone that long?
  • cyber_space_cadet

    Linking tutorial if you just want to link to an image.

    Use this one if you want to actually post a picture on your blog from a room.

    Hope you're well!

    by cyber_space_cadet at 08/16/13 3:50PM
  • prov3110
    Now I don't remember what I wanted to post. :P
    by prov3110 at 11/07/14 12:57PM

Help ... Trying to move family

As you'll see if you click through on the widget above, these two ladies are my sister (left) and my (birth) mother (right). I have not seen them since my sister was six years old; she is now twenty-eight. Over the last two or three years, my sister and I have been blessed with a sort of reunion - albeit limited to online communication.

Mother has Alzheimer's which is rapidly marching its way through her brain. She is relatively young to have this kind of permanent dementia - she will turn 67 in June. She struggles with language - losing words, can't find appropriate words, describing objects, volume when speaking, etc. Numbers have no meaning for her. Recently she has started to have trouble swallowing and following simple commands. While there are certain tasks she can still perform, she is completely unable to live unsupervised. My sister has been her caregiver for the last several years, even before the diagnosis of Alzheimer's.

Because of the rapid progress and severity of Mother's dementia, my sister needs help. She can no longer care for our Mother on her own. Our youngest brother lives with them, but because he has his own obligations and commitments, he cannot provide for them on a permanent basis. I am the oldest child - it falls to me to care for my family.

To that end, my husband and I are trying to move Mother and my sister from Spokane, WA to live with us in/near Tallahassee, FL. We all know moving is expensive; it is nearly prohibitively so when trying to move from one corner of the country to another. We have spent many hours working out the logistics of this move in an effort to find the most economical, least stressful, and least confusing (for Mother) way to move two adults and an apartment full of household goods across country. It's not cheap, but is definitely doable with help from friends and family.

That is where you come in. We need your help. Prayers - first and foremost, but also financial help. It doesn't matter how small that help might be - nickels and dimes add up to a mighty fortune. With friends, family, Christians, and God behind us - it will get done.

Please consider donating something to help us do the right thing. Help us take care of our family the way God intended us to do. Click through on the widget above to go to our GoFundMe page, read the rest of the story, and consider donating even just $1.

Thank you, muchly, from the bottom of our hearts.
  • Melfennell
    Mom is turning 66, and I'm 29. ;-)
    by Melfennell at 05/01/13 8:48PM