Welcome to ASPCA News Alert, a weekly e-mail newsletter from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.


Sure, Petfinder.com may be the best place to look online for the perfect pooch--but did you know that you just might find another species of friend there, too?! Just ask the Sanscrainte family, who recently welcomed a malamute/Lab mix puppy named Tau into their lives--and found a great new human friend in the process. It all began when the Sanscraintes saw Tau on Petfinder.com, the ASPCA's online partner and searchable database of more than 95,000 homeless pets in the U.S. and Canada . The Sanscraintes knew immediately that Tau was the pup for them, but there was one little problem. He was in Utah at Save a Dog and Kids, Inc., and they were in New Hampshire .
"We spoke to the director, Denise De Vynck," says Angela Sanscrainte, and Denise outlined what the family would need to complete a very thorough application process.

Explains Denise, "I had them send letters from their veterinarian and from a trainer, plus our completed application form. I also had a local SPCA person do a home visit." Denise is the brain--and heart--behind Save a Dog and Kids, which offers animals for adoption as well as opportunities for children to care for and train canines.

Thrilled that the Sanscraintes had passed the application process with flying colors, Denise chose them to be Tau's family, and put the pooch on a plane to Boston . "Our children thought we were picking up their uncle at the airport," says Angela. "Little did they know we were getting Tau. He has been a joy!"

But the story doesn't end there. Because of their good experience with Save a Dog and Kids, the Sanscraintes decided to adopt two cats, Princess and P.K. (Pretty Kitty), from the group. "This time Denise flew the animals out herself," says Angela. "What a treat to meet this wonderful person."

The Sanscraintes knew that Denise's birthday fell near the time of her visit, so they had planned a party for her. Since then, they've kept in touch through phone calls and e-mail, and thanks to Petfinder--and Tau, of course--the friendship has blossomed. "They are like family to me," Denise says, "and I also know first-hand they give the best home to their pets!"


Dear Petfinder member, 

This story was submitted to us by a person who adopted a pet from
your project.  It gives us great pleasure to share it with you.

If we sent it, as is, to the media recommended by the writer, we would
like it to be accurate, positive, and newsworthy.  To that end, we
welcome your input.

The new guardian has recommended a newspaper.  If you are interested in
greater coverage, send us your county name so that we could select
others from our media source.

We would also like your permission to include any of your comments.  
The story is a testament to your hard work on behalf of the pets-

Thanks for all that you do.

If you respond, send the entire message back so that I won't have to put
the pieces back together.


----Original Message-----
From: Anne Valenti [mailto:Anne Valenti]
Sent: Sunday, December 30, 2001 11:01 PM
To: mike@petfinder.com
Subject: WWW Form Submission

Below is the result of your feedback form.  It was submitted by
Anne Valenti () on Monday, December 31, 2001 at 00:01:04

city_county: Plymouth
state: MA

shelter: Save a Dog/Kid
shelterlocation: Orem,Utah
result _of_petfinder: Yes Petfinder helped make this happy tail
share_info: yes you can share my story
Press: just moved here

message: We tell everyone about Petfinder.com that will listen to our
happiness.  We adopted a wonderful bernese mountain dog mix from Utah
and we love her to pieces. That is why we named her "Reese's", as in
"Reese's pieces!!!"  She has fit into our family since the day we picked
her up from Logan Airport on February 16,2001, my son, Salvy's 8th
Birthday!  It was the best birthday present he has ever gotten and he is
looking forward to celebrating their birthday this year. I can not say
enough good things about our find on Petfinder.com. It was so fun
finding her picture on the Internet and knowing you are not only
fulfilling your own needs of locating a new family member ,but you are
also giving a pet a second chance at being loved and part of a family
which every pet should have.  I am so glad I used Petfinders.com to make
our connection and I will continue to rave about this wonderful service
to both people and pets. Thank you from our whole family..
Anne, Rich, Salvy,Nico!
le and Reese's Valenti.

Emails we receive from kids

> Hi!  We're the Penguin Club.  We're a group of kids that get
> > together
> > > > after school to work on projects like recycling newspaper and
> > helping
> > > > animals.This time we're working on getting the laws changed on puppy
> > > > mills.  We're e-mailing every animal shelter and rescue in America
> > and
> > > > asking them for their opinions on puppy mills.
> > > >   Has a dog from a puppy mill ever ended here?  What do you think of
> > puppy
> > > > mills?
> > > >   Thanks, all of the responses will be included in our letter to the
> > US
> > > > Capital Building.
> > > > -The Penguins  ( Melissa)

How wonderful! Have you read what my program is doing to get kids of all walks of life involved in learning compassion and education in dog training? Please have your kids get involved and read our website. We have a great solution to the animal cruelty and throwing away of puppies and dogs due to puppy mills and irresponsible breeders who don't have them fixed and cause all the unwanted mixed pups born to irresponsible owners who buy them from the pet stores, backyard breeders, purebred breeders, "AKC" and other irresponsible people. Please help us get more kids educating the public in this practice of selling "AKC" puppies and not fixing them and letting nature take its course and unwanted mixed litters being born. The shelters here are crowded with unwanted puppies. Till everyone stops breeding, and starts fixing all the dogs and cats until we stop killing millions every year, we cannot catch up. 

Have the kids read www.saveadogandkids.org and look at the list of puppies being euthanized and abandoned in our local shelter every day. They are smart and they will get the picture and go tell the adults this has to stop. Our kids take a homeless puppy out of the shelter with our help, crate-train, socialized and train him to get a new home as we get it ready with veterinary neuter, microchip and vaccinations over 2 to 4 months as needed. This way the kids learn the responsibility and value of a pup, and the public also learns by watching these caring young kids. Please contact us how you can do the same in your community. Go to www.saveadogandkids.org and call me at 801-808-44424 this is a solution to not only puppy mills, shelter overcrowdedness and teaching our youth the right values and responsibilities. Please join me. You should see the video footage I have over the years of what the dogs and kids gain from this experience. I am looking for help to get it on DVDs to send to everyone. WE just need the funding.

Thanks for caring to get involved,

Denise De Vynck,

Director Save A Dog & Kids dot Org,







Below is the result of your feedback form.  It was submitted by
Angela Sanscrainte (lscara@aol.com) on Tuesday, October 1, 2002 at

city_county: Windham, Rockingham

state: NH

shelter: Save a Dog & Kids Inc

share_info: yes you can share my story

Press: Derry News

 After our Husky, Nikki, passed, we wanted a male puppy.  Our 14
yr. old female Akita-mix would only accept a male dog....so we searched
Petfinder.com.  We came across, Tau, an eight week old malamute/lab mix.
The problem was he was at a shelter in Utah!  We spoke to the director,
Denise, at the shelter and she wanted letters of recommendation,
pictures of our house and yard.  Since Denise was having problems
finding a good home in Utah, she would consider an out-of-state

We waited and prayed for three weeks.  Finally, Denise called us with
the good news.  She chose us to be Tau's family and she would fly him to
Boston before Christmas.  Our children thought we were picking up their
uncle at the airport...Little did they know we were getting Tau.

He has been a joy!  Kesia has perked up quite a bit since Tau has been
with us.  He is now a year old and such a part of the family.

Since then, we have added to our clan, two cats from the same shelter.
This time Denise flew the animals out herself.  What a treat to meet
this wonderful person!

When it's Kesia's time to go, we will use Save A Dog & Kids again!!  Thank
you for your service.





Posted on Wed, Aug. 04, 2004


Rescue groups try to save W.Va. dogs

Associated Press


Animal-rescue groups across the nation are scrambling to find homes for nearly 100 cats and dogs at a West Virginia shelter, where they fear sudden budget cuts could lead to a mass gassing.

Judy Oliver, director of the Mason County Animal Shelter in Point Pleasant, and two employees resigned when told to get rid of 55 dogs and 40 cats within 14 days. That's more than five times the number of dogs killed in all of 2003.

"I couldn't do it," Oliver said Wednesday. "They told me to start yesterday, and I refused."

But County Administrator John Gerlach and County Commissioner Rick Handley said that's not exactly what they ordered. They said Oliver was told she could clear out the animals by adoption, rescue or euthanization. The suggestion that all be killed at once is both absurd and physically impossible, Gerlach said.

On Wednesday, the 42-pen facility had 80 dogs and 50 cats. The county wants those numbers cut to 25 and 10, respectively. From now on, no animal can stay more than 14 days. After that, it must be put down.

State law requires only a five-day stay.

"I don't understand how we got to be the villains in this," Gerlach said. "In some counties, as soon as the clock ticks five days, they start gassing."

Gerlach and Handley said they fielded angry calls from across the country as animal rescue groups spread e-mails Wednesday that contained some misinformation.

"I had a lady call me an ignorant hillbilly," Handley said. She apologized when he told her the animals had two weeks.

"We would like to not have to put any of them down," added Gerlach, challenging rescuers to "come and get 'em."

Now, groups from Utah to Pennsylvania are organizing drivers to pick up the animals.

"We understand they can't just warehouse animals. I'd put them down too, if it got too ridiculous," said rescuer Vicki Sayles of Doylestown, Pa., part of a network called Animal Underground. "But they should give you time to put out a plea."

Sayles' group brings animals to a PetsMart store in Montgomeryville, Pa., every Saturday from noon to 3 p.m., and West Virginia pets are quickly snatched up. On average, she said, about 50 people show up for 12 dogs.

"These particular dogs are really highly adoptable animals. They're loving animals that are usually lovingly taken care of," she said. "People stand in line, waiting for West Virginia dogs."

Denise De Vynck, director of Utah-based Save A Dog & Kids Inc., said animal rescuers had already been struggling to find homes for some 200 dogs at a shelter in Warren, Tenn., that was ordered to shut down for financial reasons. The Mason County crisis further strains the limited resources of volunteers from Ohio to Vermont.

"The same problem exists everywhere when you've got this overpopulation problem: You can't catch up and you can't get the manpower, and you just kill, kill, kill, kill," De Vynck said. "It's unbelievable what these elected officials create when they make these decisions."

Oliver said she returned from vacation Tuesday to learn her budget was being slashed from about $97,000 to $50,000, and her staff cut from six to three.

Though she's run the shelter for eight years, she began transporting dogs to other states only two years ago.

"I've had hundreds of dogs adopted this year already, just since January," she said. "Some of these dogs may not be the prettiest dogs, but there's somebody out there for every dog."

Oliver's animals usually end up in states with mandatory spaying and neutering laws, and, therefore, a shortage of puppies. In West Virginia, where there is no such law, she gets litters from the same dogs every six months.

"It's a vicious cycle," she said. "It's horrible, and no one will do anything about it."

De Vynck said most animal transport participants are volunteers using private funds. Oliver, however, was using public funds and employees in a county that can no longer afford it.

Gerlach said tax collections this year will be about $220,000 less than expected, and cuts must be made.

At the same time, the county is facing $250,000 more than expected in regional jail costs, plus huge increases in liability and employee health insurance.

"That money's going to come from somewhere," Gerlach said. "Our county just can't support all these things."


Mason shelter: http://www.petfinder.com/shelters/WV39.html

Save a Dog & Kids Inc Relocation of Southern Dogs and cats.: www.weneedahome.net



Strut Your Mutt brings out the dogs


August 15, 2001

By Virginia Harrington, Feature Writer

The second annual Strut Your Mutt program and contest, sponsored by Uintah Animal Care, was held Saturday, August 11 in the amphitheater at Western Park.

Special guest for the event was Denise DeVynck and Save a Dog and Kids, Inc. from Provo. DeVynck and several youths demonstrated a dog training technique called "click and treat," which DeVynck said is a successful training method for dogs of all ages. The idea is to sound a "clicker" every time the animal responds to a command in an appropriate manner and then provide a tidbit of a treat. The dog soon learns to associate the sound of the click with a treat and then to associate the proper behavior with the click.

Strut Your Mutt also involved several competitions between dogs, both purebreds and mixed breeds. A large number of dogs and their people entered 16 contests. The top winners of each contest were then entered into Best in Show.

Sarah Bingham, daughter of Debbie and Scott Bingham of Vernal, and her dog Maggie, won best trick dog and most obedient dog, then won Best in Show for Mutts. Drew Jackson, son of Phil and Lisa Jackson of Vernal, and his dog Cobra, won best short-haired dog, then won Best in Show for Purebreds.

Other winners were Forrest McMickell (Mack), for dog resembles owner and curliest hair, Rikki Smith (Roxy) for best frisbee catcher, Jessica Johns (Angel) for best long-hair, Scarlett Olson (Billy) for kissingest dog, Becky Jones (Rocco) for waggiest tail and most spots, Shelby MacLee (Dana) for most unique mutt, Kim Turner (Ruddee) for most unique purebred, Kaylee Roloff (Gertie) for smallest dog, Cliftia Purcell Johnson (Worf) for largest dog and longest tail, Deserie Jackson (Dugan) for longest legs, Collett

Burgess (Bugs) for shortest legs, and Shaycee Mohar (Licorice) for prettiest eyes.

The part of the program that many dogs seemed to enjoy best was "bobbing for dogs." Hot dogs were placed in a child's wading pool filled with water and any dog not minding a cooling dip could jump or reach in to snag a tasty treat.

10533 Sara Bingham and her dog Maggie win Best in Show for Mutts at Strut Your Mutt.

10532 Drew Jackson and his dog Cobra won Best in Show for purebreds at Strut Your Mutt.





Collaborating with the South Salt Lake Animal Shelter, we offered low cost 7 week obedience training with David Lyman.  This Special Graduation of 13 of our rescued puppies placed with very responsible owners who completed 7 weeks of training with their new puppies.  Many continued with our program for more fun trick training. 







Save a Dog

Save A Dog & Kids Inc. has been bringing beautiful puppies and purebred dogs to Park City for the past two years. Everyone wants to know what the "Kids" part of our nonprofit program is about. Denise De Vynck's 20 years of Social Work experience with teens and kids gives them an opportunity to learn to love, care for and train puppies. This gives them compassion, responsibility, confidence and many other important lessons in life. If your teen would like to care for a puppy, crate-train them and clicker train them, we will provide everything they need.

One of our teen foster homes told us that this has been the best experience for their 12 year-old daughter. With our volunteer teens, and help from local residents and Michelle and Ariel of Bad Ass Coffee, we have adopted out over 300 dogs in the past year: Great Pyrenees, Saint Bernards, Australian Shepherds, German Shepherds, Golden Retrievers, Yellow Labs and many more. We microchip all dogs, give all Vaccinations including Bordetella, Spay/Neuter and have a great Clicker Training course at a discount in Park City at Silver Creek Animal Hospital with an expert Rescue Arctic Dog trainer Marren Partridge.(See pictures of some of the dogs adopted by Park City Families, adoption days, Marren our trainer and current pups for adoption attached)

We are in need of an indoor location to do our weekend adoptions in Park City because the weather is getting colder. We have never had a fundraiser yet, and save these pups with Adoption donations only. We would love to hold a Christmas Ball for the Dogs if we had a location. We work hard to save as many of the 50 plus dogs and litters of puppies dumped at the Utah County Shelter at a time, where 25 a day have to be put down because there is no room. We donated over 5,000 Pet Resource Guides with $20 off Spay/Neuter and Training coupons for the Utah County residents at this summer's 22 city festivals, rodeos and parades. Education and resources are needed in Utah County, and we need your help because Park City is up to date on responsible dog ownership. If you want to be a part of this great program contact Denise at Save A Dog & Kids Inc.: 801-225-6491 or leave a message at 801-808-4424. We want to thank all our loyal and dedicated supporters in Park City.

Denise Devynck holds a Norwegian Elkhound puppy, (one of two she rescued from the local shelter after the breeder could not sell them), at the No More Homeless Pets of Utah first press conference.

  Our SAVE A DOG article in the Utah County Journal was published every week for 4 years until the paper stopped publication.  This paper was distributed free of charge to all Utah County homes.  Save A Dog & Kids used this article for education on proper dog ownership, low cost Spay/Neuter, Training and other resources. 



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