March 2015                                                                        


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Happy St. Patrick's Day!



Despite the huge amounts of snow that remain on the ground in New England, we know that spring is just around the corner. And with it, as hard as it is to imagine right now,  will come the dreaded mosquito carrying heartworm disease. 


Heartworm disease is a serious and potentially fatal disease in pets in the United States and many other parts of the world.  But it IS preventable and curable. Read all about it below and arm yourself, because before you know it, the snow will have melted, and spring will be here!


Happy St. Patrick's Day and very best wishes from      



and Michele
GSP Rescue NE Board of Directors 


Heartworm Prevention Always in Season Says American Heartworm Society





Heartworm disease is a serious and potentially fatal disease in pets in the United States and many other parts of the world. It is caused by foot-long worms (heartworms) that live in the heart, lungs and associated blood vessels of affected pets, causing severe lung disease, heart failure and damage to other organs in the body.


 Heartworm disease affects dogs, cats and ferrets, but heartworms also live in other mammal species, including wolves, coyotes, foxes, sea lions and-in rare instances-humans. Because wild species such as foxes and coyotes live in proximity to many urban areas, they are considered important carriers of the disease.


The dog is a natural host for heartworms, which means that heartworms that live inside the dog mature into adults, mate and produce offspring. If untreated, their numbers can increase, and dogs have been known to harbor several hundred worms in their bodies. Heartworm disease causes lasting damage to the heart, lungs and arteries, and can affect the dog's health and quality of life long after the parasites are gone. For this reason, prevention is by far the best option, and treatment-when needed-should be administered as early in the course of the disease as possible.




The mosquito plays an essential role in the heartworm life cycle. Adult female heartworms living in an infected dog, fox, coyote, or wolf produce microscopic baby worms called microfilaria that circulate in the bloodstream. When a mosquito bites and takes a blood meal from an infected animal, it picks up these baby worms, which develop and mature into "infective stage" larvae over a period of 10 to 14 days. Then, when the infected mosquito bites another dog, cat, or susceptible wild animal, the infective larvae are deposited onto the surface of the animal's skin and enter the new host through the mosquito's bite wound. Once inside a new host, it takes approximately 6 months for the larvae to mature into adult heartworms. Once mature, heartworms can live for 5 to 7 years in dogs and up to 2 or 3 years in cats. Because of the longevity of these worms, each mosquito season can lead to an increasing number of worms in an infected pet. 




In the early stages of the disease, many dogs show few symptoms or no symptoms at all. The longer the infection persists, the more likely symptoms will develop. Active dogs, dogs heavily infected with heartworms, or those with other health problems often show pronounced clinical signs.


Signs of heartworm disease may include a mild persistent cough, reluctance to exercise, fatigue after moderate activity, decreased appetite, and weight loss. As heartworm disease progresses, pets may develop heart failure and the appearance of a swollen belly due to excess fluid in the abdomen. Dogs with large numbers of heartworms can develop a sudden blockages of blood flow within the heart leading to a life-threatening form of cardiovascular collapse. This is called caval syndrome, and is marked by a sudden onset of labored breathing, pale gums, and dark bloody or coffee-colored urine. Without prompt surgical removal of the heartworm blockage, few dogs survive.







Many factors must be considered, even if heartworms do not seem to be a problem in your local area. Your community may have a greater incidence of heartworm disease than you realize-or you may unknowingly travel with your pet to an area where heartworms are more common. Heartworm disease is also spreading to new regions of the country each year. Stray and neglected dogs and certain wildlife such as coyotes, wolves, and foxes can be carriers of heartworms. Mosquitoes blown great distances by the wind and the relocation of infected pets to previously uninfected areas also contribute to the spread of heartworm disease (this happened following Hurricane Katrina when 250,000 pets, many of them infected with heartworms, were "adopted" and shipped throughout the country).


The fact is that heartworm disease has been diagnosed in all 50

 states, and risk factors are impossible to predict. Multiple variables, from climate variations to the presence of wildlife carriers, cause rates of infections to vary dramatically from year to year-even within communities. And because infected mosquitoes can come inside, both outdoor and indoor pets are at risk.


For that reason, the American Heartworm Society recommends that you "think 12:" (1) get your pet tested every 12 months for heartworm and (2) give your pet heartworm preventive 12 months a year.



For more information, go to






Even if you don't own an Irish terrier or Irish Wolfhound, your GSP will feel very lucky this St. Pat's Day with these easy to make Shamrock Dog Treats!


Based off the flavors of the traditional Irish-American dinner of corned beef and cabbage, these treats are much healthier for your dog than the human version.


In fact, one of the common spices in corned beef, paprika, can actually be harmful to dogs. According to the ASPCA, paprika and turmeric contain irritants  that could cause irritation to your dog's skin and gastrointestinal tract.



  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tablespoon parsley
  • 1 tablespoon grated carrots
  • 2 tablespoons flaxseed oil
  • cup low-sodium beef broth
  • Parchment paper
  • Shamrock cookie cutter 


  1. Mix flour, carrots and parsley together in mixer
  2. Add flaxseed oil, mix
  3. Add beef broth; mix until all dry ingredients are moistened
  4. Roll dough out on floured surface to a 1/8" thick sheet
  5. Cut into shamrocks using a cookie cutter 
  6. Place on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper
  7. Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes

Makes about 10-15 cookies, depending on size of shamrock.

Be sure to let the treats cool thoroughly before giving to your dog. These make great party favors for St. Patrick's Day guests, or just to spoil your own Irish-loving pup!



Learning CPR and First Aid could save your pet's life. Here are the things EVERY pet owner ought to know:





The most common reasons for avoiding nail trims are that the owner is afraid of "quicking" the dog, or that the dog fusses and creates bad feelings around the procedure. Nail cutting becomes an event surrounded by angst and drama. For very active dogs who run all day long on varied surfaces, cutting nails may not be necessary. High mileage wears them down naturally. But among city or suburban dogs who are lucky to get a mile or two walk daily, excessively long toenails are more common than not.



(From The Huffington Post)

Want to make the world a better place in one easy step? Take home a foster pet from a local shelter or rescue group.


Fostering means bringing in a cat or dog -- or parrot, or baby pig, or any other homeless pet -- with the goal of nurturing them for a while until they can be dispatched to a permanent home with a family who'll love them forever.


It's a crucial part of the animal rescue world. It's also amazing, for you and for the animals. Here's why:


1. Foster Pets Learn They're Loved



"Watching a dog that has been in a shelter environment, or hurt, or abused or all of the above enter your home is a magical, beautiful thing," writes regular fosterer Tamera Jackson on the Pibbles & More Animal Rescue blog. "Though they may not be settled, yet they surely seem to know they are safe and, yes, loved."
  • 2. It's (Usually) So Fun For Your Other Pets, Too                 
  • Lisa Morabito, director of operations for Baltimore's city shelter, has had a lot of foster kittens come through her home. 

    They always end up snuggled close to the big pack of dogs who live with Morabito and her husband on a permanent basis. The dogs don't seem to mind the attention one bit. (The dueling sweater outfits are maybe another story!)
  • 3. You're Saving Lives                                                                  
  • Every animal who goes into a foster home brings down the number of shelter pets euthanized each year

    "Not only are they helping us get animals adopted, but they are freeing up space at our adoption centers for other animals in need," says Zenit Chughtai, spokesperson for the Washington Humane Society, D.C.'s city shelter. 

    "Fosters are the light and joy of my day. They swoop in and help all the animals that need their care the most," adds WHS's foster coordinator Jennah Billeter. "They're not only heroes to animals, they're heroes to all of us who care so deeply about animal welfare."
  • 4. It'll Make You Feel Great                                                          
    "It is truly remarkable watching the dogs transition from skittish, scared little animals to trusting, flourishing members of a family," says Steven P. Zimmer, who fosters dogs through Delaware-based Renee's Rescues. "People find different ways to enrich their lives but for us, fostering dogs is what does it. Both making the dogs feel better about their world and making us feel about ourselves."
  • 5. Foster Pets Will Make You Laugh                                            
    Droopy the basset hound was skin and bones and sick with pneumonia when Emily Gear, director of the rescue group Louie's Legacy, took him in as a foster. 

    As he was brought back to health, his goofy personality appeared, and Droopy "became a bouncing, boisterous happy Basset Hound with one of the funniest personalities I've ever seen." 

    "Droopy is a character and would make me laugh constantly. The more I laughed, the more he would clown," says Gear, who was able to help this lovable guy find a wonderful family of his own after about six months of fostering. He also found his way into a Louie's Legacy fundraising calendar.
  • 6. Your Human Kids Will Love It, Too                                         
  • Kelly Duer takes in a lot of dogs who need socialization. She loves seeing these pups learn how to be well-loved pets. It's great for her human kids, too. 

    "Interacting and gaining the trust of these abandoned dogs, many of whom have also been mistreated, has been incredible for their self-esteem," says Duer. "It's been a wonderful experience for all of us."
  • 7. You Might Foster A Squeal Patrick Harris                              
  • Piggy vs.  Pillow
    Piggy vs. Pillow
    What sorts of animals need fostering? All kinds: cats and dogs, birds and rabbits. Even baby pigs, like wee Squeal Patrick Harris here, who was being fostered with great relish by Kirstyn Northrop Cobb, director of the Humane Society of Calvert County, and Cobb's daughter Aubrey. 

    "He is the perfect example of how fostering is such a great thing," says Cobb. "Without someone to take him in and bottle feed him, he probably wouldn't be around." 

    We say "was" because Squeal has since been adopted -- by Aubrey. 

    "He is my baby and my responsibility," she says of the sweet piggy whose adventures you can now follow on the Squeal Patrick Harris Facebook page.
  • 8. Fostering Is Flexible                                                                       
  • Laura Peters and her husband can't take in a full-time foster dog. So they pick up fosters for a couple of days at a time, through the Fairfax County Animal Shelter in Northern Virginia. 

    "We can take in a shelter dog on the weekend, give him or her a break from the shelter environment, offer an extended play date with our dog -- which is actually good for her, too! -- take great pictures and learn important things about our foster dog that will be helpful to potential adopters to facilitate the perfect match," Peters says. "All the dogs we have fostered have found their forever home within just a few days of their return to the shelter!"
  • 9. Fostering Can Help You Heal                                                      

  • Julia Grosz started fostering after the death of her beloved cat Monkey. 

    "She was a spooky little cuss that nobody liked, but she was my rock," Grosz says. 

    Grosz decided to foster a cat named Heath, who'd been described by shelter staff as a "moody jerk," thinking that this guy would help her get over her heartbreak. 

    "He turned out to be the complete opposite, which wasn't entirely disappointing," says Grosz. "Heath brought so much joy into my life while he was here, and personally seeing him off to his new mom completely redefined my understanding of love and purpose. To call the experience profound would cheapen it; Heefy showed me my best self, and mended my broken heart in the process.
  • 10. You'll Give A Pet A Chance To Shine
    Pets who might not thrive in a shelter setting have "a chance to be healthy and happy," says Sam Querry, whose foster cats have their own Facebook page. "It also helps potential adopters get to see what a great personality the animal has in a home setting."

  • 11. Getting Started Is Easy
    Most shelters and rescue groups have information on their websites about how to get started as a foster. Here's GSP RESCUE NE's, for example. 

    If you can't easily find the information for your local shelter or favorite rescue group, call, or send an email, to find out more. They will be so happy to hear from you.

  • 12. You'll Make Someone Else's Family Complete
    Dixie the dog was being fostered by a New Jersey family. 

    "The foster mom posted that she was available for adoption on a local Facebook garage sale site," says Marcy Duarte. "I fell in love with that forehead on Facebook and just knew she was our dog!"

  • 13. You're Covered                                                                         

    Shelters and rescue groups will typically cover medical costs for fosters. Sometimes, they'll foot the bill for food and other day-to-day expenses, as well.

  • 14. You'll Make New Friends                                                           

    Pam Townsend stays in touch with the family who adopted one of her favorite fosters. 

    "One of the added benefits of fostering: meeting and getting to know people I'd never have met otherwise," she says.

  • 15. Goodbye Is A Happy Ending                                                      

    Don't be put off fostering because you think it'll be too hard when your sweetie gets adopted. 

    "It's never easy to say goodbye to these beautiful souls, but seeing their happy ending makes it all worthwhile," says Lucy Rockdale, founder of My Buddy Dog Rescue. "And just when that chapter comes to an end, there is another one waiting in the wings for a chance to be saved."

  • 16. And If You Really Fall In Love...                                              

    Kelly Garrison knew that she was sunk when her foster Bumper almost got adopted. "I cried and cried. Everything happens for a reason," she says. 

    Bumper is now permanent at her house, and even has a beloved brother, another "foster failure" named Willis. 

    Garrison is still bringing home new fosters from Missouri-based Mutts n Stuff on a regular basis. 

    "There just isn't a better feeling that could ever compare," Garrison says, "knowing what you have done in saving a life."



Support GSP Rescue New England simply by walking your dog! Check out this app at and use it each time you grab for the leash. It's healthy for you, your dog, and GSP Rescue NE!


In This Issue

Quick Links

Help Us Help Them
foster logo


GSP Rescue New England has a presence on Facebook. Go to:
Cookbooks Still Available!

How 'bout some home cookin' for March?  


Get yourself a copy of "Point to the Pantry," a cookbook full of recipes by the GSP Rescue family. Cost? $10 per copy, plus shipping.

To purchase, go to the Rescue Store at

Look Who's Been Adopted!

More GSPs have found their forever homes!


They are: Rex, Andy, Teddy and Sophie.


Hooray for the dogs!! Hooray for their new families!! :-) 


Donations have gratefully been accepted this month from: Jeanne Cox, Pieter Williams (Unum Group, matching funds), Catherine Parmentier, John Conley, Eleni and Bill EfthimiadesGail O'Shaughnessy and Bill Crawford both in memory of Levi Robinson.

 Thank you, thank you, thank you all for your generosity!


Recurring Donations

Thank you to these donors who have set up recurring monthly donations -- an easy process that can be set up on PayPal.

Donors are: Frank StracciaJeff Adams, Bill Crawford and Emilie Knisley


Thank you for your generosity!


Thank You, Donors!

For those who have graciously made donations to GSP Rescue NE and would like a receipt, please contact Celeste.


And, once again, a big THANK YOU to you all. :-)

Help From Our Friends
At Bissell

Click HERE to get to the Bissell website.

 Help Us With

Our Year-Round Fundraisers




Zeppa Studios designs and produces unique gifts for dog and other animal lovers. 


Their Project Rescue was specifically created to help rescue groups earn money and for customers to save money!


Enter the coupon code for German Shorthaired Pointer Rescue New England (GSPRNE) during your online check-out or mention it to the customer service rep when ordering by phone. Customers get 10 percent off their order, GSP Rescue NE will get 20 percent. 


For information or to see their product line, go to ZeppaStudios  


Dog Door Discount!

 Hale Pet Door logo

GSP Rescue New England is listed among rescue groups and shelters that have participated in Hale Pet Door's Rescue Rewards program. 
The Rescue Rewards works this way:  When  customers let Hale know that they adopted a pet (either recently or in the past), they receive a 10 percent discount on the cost of their Hale Pet Door.  And then Hale makes a donation for that same 10 percent amount to the organization that the customer tells them about.


In 2010, Hale donated more than $20,000 to rescues and shelters all over the country.  

For more information on Hale pet doors, go to

COMEDY CORNER                                                 










Sesame Street - Dogs bake homemade bread
Sesame Street - Dogs bake homemade bread