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May 1, 2013

The Walk for Animals is this weekend!

This Saturday, 10,000 people along with 5,000 pets will show just how much passion they have for helping the animals in our community. To express our appreciation for their incredible support, we’re planning a day of fun festivities complete with family-friendly entertainment, games for your four-legged friends, fantastic eats, and plenty of good people and pet watching!    

Bringing thousands of people to one location can be tricky, but we’ve got a plan to make it safe and easy for all. Only authorized vehicles will be allowed to turn northbound on Meadow Lane from Highway 55 on Saturday, May 4. If you have not been given an authorized parking pass, you will need to park in one of five convenient off-site parking lots with plenty of spaces and parking attendants to help you find your way. Then you and your pet can board a free shuttle bus to the Walk grounds. Parking passes are not required for these five lots and shuttle buses run every 15 minutes starting at approximately 7:30 a.m.

Walk registration and activities begin at 8:30 a.m. and the Walk kicks off at 10 a.m. Walkers will travel down Meadow Lane and through Theodore Wirth Park to the Cities 97 turnaround point where complimentary snacks will be provided along with music and demonstrations from the Minnesota Disc Dog Club. Walkers will then head back through the park to Animal Humane Society. The walk is approximately five miles but walkers can turn around at any time.

Back at Animal Humane Society the festivities continue with live music, people and pet vendors, games for your four-legged friends, and kids’ activities including face painting and a moonwalk. For pets with a special talent or an irresistible face, pet contests begin on the main stage at noon. And when it’s time to refuel, there will be plenty of delicious and affordable food options to feed the whole family. Please note there is no cash machine on site so please bring along cash if you plan on purchasing food.

Finally, when the festivities end at 2 p.m. and another Walk for Animals comes to a close, thousands of walkers and their pets will board the busses with that special warm and fuzzy feeling knowing that they helped make a difference in the lives of tens of thousands of animals through their fundraising efforts.

If you haven’t already registered for the Walk for Animals, sign up today and start raising funds for the animals that need you most.

Special thanks to our 2013 Walk for Animals sponsors: Purina, Fox 9, Cities 97, My 29, Kool 108, Star Tribune, Subaru, Wells Fargo, and Deli Express.

Oliver's top ten list

Update on Oliver sent in by Ann K.

I adopted this little “troublemaker” from the Golden Valley Animal Humane Society back in July. His name is Oliver and he is a 5-year-old Siberian Husky mix. He is so laid back and has a big heart and goofy attitude. In the past few months I have found out the following:

1. The people at Animal Humane Society were not kidding when they said Oliver was the “escape artist.”  This meaning he can actually climb fences and does it almost on a daily basis. I have learned that even at the dog park he will climb and escape. (He gets bored easily?)

2. His favorite food is ChapStick – he eats it when I leave it in spots that are not Oliver proof.

3. He enjoys cuddling but will leave me if I do not pay attention to him.

4. Oliver is an extremely picky eater and will not eat most dog treats. There is one thing that I found he likes though — can you say spoiled?

5. He loves to talk, which is good because sometimes I get lonely living alone.

6. The only time he will stay in the same room as you if you aren't paying attention to him is when there is food. If that's the case, he'll lay there, plot out his master plan, and wait until you either look away for a split second or leave the room, and then he tears into that food!

7. He loves people and the dog park.

8. He's quite the ladies man.

9. Ice fishing is our new passion.

10. I love him to the moon and back!

No matter how naughty my Oliver pup is, he has my heart and I will love him until the end of time. He is my favorite guy and I have no idea what I would do without him. He is my new best friend and I really hope he loves his new home as much as it seems. Thank you for this awesome guy!

Collaboration brings Chihuahuas home

When the Gintner family started looking for a dog, they were hoping to find a companion for their 4-year-old Miniature Pinscher, Zeus. Lisa spotted Pearl, a 1-year-old Chihuahua, on Animal Humane Society’s website. Once she mentioned the dog to her daughters there was no turning back, they had to come meet Pearl!

Lisa and her daughters visited Pearl just a few days after she arrived at Animal Humane Society. They immediately felt she would be a great fit for their family and put her on an adoption hold. The next day the whole Gintner family returned to adopt Pearl. They renamed her Athena.

Athena is flourishing in her new home. She quickly mastered house training and walks great on a leash. Athena and Zeus have also formed a friendly canine bond. Being from California there is one thing she is still getting used to — the snow!

Athena’s new life is the direct result of a partnership between organizations that are working together to save as many animals as they can. The idea was born when Dr. Cindy Karsten, a shelter medicine resident at UC Davis in California, was troubled by the over-representation of Chihuahuas in crowded shelters. Over the past several years, Chihuahuas have filled up California shelters in record-breaking numbers, representing as much as 60 percent of all dogs in some shelters in the state.

Looking for ways to alleviate the problem, Dr. Karsten reached out to AHS where she did a veterinary externship in 2010. She remembered that AHS had experience collaborating with other shelters and rescue groups to take in and successfully adopt out animals that would likely be euthanized elsewhere. AHS agreed to find the Chihuahuas new homes if Dr. Karsten could get them to Minnesota.

Dr. Karsten partnered with Dr. Christi Camblor, founder of Compassion Without Borders, to raise money for the transport program. Fundraising efforts and a relocation grant through the ASPCA provided the money necessary to fly the Chihuahuas from California to Minnesota.

The first group of 15 dogs arrived in November 2012 and subsequent groups arrived in March and April 2013. So far 55 Chihuahuas have been flown across the country to begin new lives in Minnesota, and the group hopes to transport an additional 20 dogs per month for at least the next five months. 

“After walking through shelter after shelter in California and seeing all of the Chihuahuas that fill the kennels, it is so amazing to have an opportunity to rescue some and in turn help the wonderful people who work so tirelessly every day to find them homes,” says Dr. Karsten.

MPR to "Pay it Forward" to AHS

Minnesota Public Radio’s Spring Member Drive starts May 9, with their first ever “Pay It Forward” drive. For this member drive, MPR will offer their listeners the opportunity to support public radio and five community organizations, including Animal Humane Society. Here’s how it works: when a listener gives to MPR, rather than choosing a mug or tote bag or other item as a thank-you gift, they can pay their thank-you gift forward to Animal Humane Society, helping to provide items like cat scratchers, microchips, treats, and beds. Learn more here.


More Treats



Our popular Unleashed Summer Camps are filling up fast. There are still a few spots left in Coon Rapids, St. Paul, and Woodbury. Register your animal-loving kid today!

Scratching Post


The Canine Good Citizen test rewards dogs with good manners at home and in the community. Test your dog’s skills with this ten-step certification program.