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2014 ARL Boston Marathon Team Applications

Join Our 2014 Boston Marathon Team!

BRECKMarathongtFrontAre you an animal lover who has been dreaming of running in the Boston Marathon? Here is your chance to support the Animal Rescue League of Boston while running in one of the world’s most prestigious road races.

John Hancock has once again graciously given us charity bibs to use for the 2014 Boston Marathon on April 21.

Anyone who is interested in running with our team will need to fill out the application and submit a non-refundable $25 application fee. The deadline to apply is November 6, 2013. All applicants can expect to hear from us by November 15.

Runners who are selected to be on the our team will be required to raise a minimum of $7,500. This money will go towards the ARL’s efforts of helping animals who are suffering from cruelty, abandonment and neglect. To apply click the button below or follow this link: http://arlboston.kintera.org/2014bostonmarathon

We hope you’ll consider being on our team, together we are Boston Strong!

Apply Now


The Chase Game for Dogs

A Game for Dogs Who Just Don’t Want to Play Fetch

Have you tried playing fetch with your dog, but he just doesn’t seem interested in returning the toy? We have just the game for your pup! Next time your canine companion is in the mood to play, try the “Chase Game.”

Reblogged from the Center for Shelter Dogs – a program of the Animal Rescue League of Boston

GOAL: To play a game with the dog which incorporates fun, training, and exercise.


You are the source of fun! Play energetically with your dog with the chase toy (lunge whip or tether with a lightweight stuffed toy tied to the end like this one from KONG). The dog should never make mouth contact with your hands or other body parts, must always drop the toy when asked, and must not ‘take’ the toy until the cue is given. Breaking the rules results in a temporary end to the game (and fun), for a minimum of one minute. Put the toy out of reach of the dog, and ignore the dog during the break.

1. Say ‘take it’ and then begin flinging and moving the toy around so that your dog can jump
at, chase, and attempt to catch the toy.
2. After some running, leaping, and chasing, allow the dog to catch the toy.
3. Cue the dog to ‘drop it’.
4. If the dog won’t release the chase toy, try:
– Putting a tasty treat right in front of the dog’s nose
– Tossing several treats onto the ground
– Squeaking a squeaky toy (which is kept in your pocket for this purpose)
– Dropping the chase toy
5. When the dog releases the toy, give the dog a treat and immediately encourage the dog to
‘take it’ again!

Download the Chase Game PDF

Reminder: October is Adopt-A-Dog Month! Here at the ARL we have many extraordinary dogs waiting for loving homes. Search our adoptable dogs now.

Columbus Day Weekend Adoption Center Hours

If one of the “to-do” items on your Columbus Day Weekend list of activities is adopt a new pet, all three of our adoption centers in Boston, Brewster, and Dedham have cats, dogs, bunnies, and more just waiting to meet you.

Search our adoptable pets for a preview of our furry shelter residents!

All of our adoption centers are open on Saturday and Sunday.  Check the listing below for specific hours.

On Monday, our Boston center is by appointment only and Brewster and Dedham are closed.

Adoption Centers and Hours

Boston Adoption Center

Hours: Saturday and Sunday, 1 pm -4 pm/Monday, by appointment only

10 Chandler Street
Boston, MA  02116
Phone: (617) 426-9170


Brewster Adoption Center

Hours: Saturday and Sunday, 1 pm-4 pm/Monday, closed

3981 Main St. (Route 6A), East Brewster, MA 02631
Phone: (508) 255-1030


Dedham Adoption Center

Hours: Saturday, 1 pm-6:30 pm/ Sunday, 1 pm-3:30 pm/Monday, closed

55 Anna’s Place
Dedham, MA 02026
Phone: (781) 326-0729


Dog Parks and the Adopted Dog

Some helpful tips from the ARL’s Center for Shelter Dogs for Adopt-A-Dog Month about taking your newly adopted pup to the dog park.

Reblogged from the Center for Shelter Dogs

OWEN loves to play and is available for adoption at our Brewster Adoption Center!

OWEN loves to play and is available for adoption at our Brewster Adoption Center!

Many adopters want to be able to enjoy dog parks with their new companion. Dog parks can be a great opportunity for dogs to play off leash (especially in a city environment) and to enjoy some social time with their own species. Dog parks can also help high energy dogs to burn off some energy so they can be more relaxed in the home.
Here are some carefully crafted tips from the Center for Shelter Dogs that might help you when you visit dog parks with your dog.

  1. Recognize that not all dogs like dog parks! Learn your dog’s preferences for doggy companions and respect his or her space, if needed. Like humans, mature dogs often don’t enjoy rambunctious, adolescent play. Many dogs, especially adult dogs, prefer to have just two or three good dog friends that have similar play styles for structured play dates. Going to the park at off-peak hours can also help a new dog to adjust and not be overwhelmed by large crowds of dogs.
  2. Stay in tune with your dog during dog park visits. Just because your dog is off leash doesn’t mean that you don’t have to pay attention to your dog. Recalls and time outs can keep your dog connected to you and paying attention. Time outs, away from rough play, can also help to keep play from escalating into over-arousal. Don’t use this time to catch up on your reading or chat on your cell phone. And be sure to work with your dog on a good recall command before visiting dog parks.
  3. Keep your dog vaccinated and on a regular de-worming schedule. Just like highly populated human areas, dog parks can harbor transmissible diseases from the wide variety of dogs who frequent them. Keeping your dog up to date on vaccinations, including Bordetella, can help reduce their risk of getting sick. Worms can also be prevalent at dog parks so speak to your veterinarian about getting on a de-worming schedule along with monthly heartworm preventative.
  4. Find a well-set-up and appropriately-sized dog park. Try to find a dog park with ample room for the number of dogs in attendance. There should be areas where your dog can move away from the group and go off on his own if he chooses. Bringing leashed dogs into dog parks can cause trouble. Good dog parks should have double gates that prevent escapes and allow owners to take off their dog’s leash before entering the park. Some dog parks have a trail system which allows dogs and owners to keep moving, cutting down on altercations and tense greetings.
  5. Avoid carrying food or other high-value items in parks. Food and treats can cause dogs to fight during times that they might otherwise not. If your dog is highly toy-motivated, toys can also become a source of competition and lead to resource guarding in the park.

Watching dogs play can be a great source of joy for many dog owners. Owners can find play opportunities in dog parks, dog daycares, or in small playgroups. Taking the steps above can ensure that the dog park experience is right for the dog and enjoyable for all involved. If your dog is not a fan of dog parks, enjoying a nice walk on a summer evening can be wonderful too!

Learn more about the Center for Shelter Dogs at: centerforshelterdogs.org

One Rescue, Two Lives Saved

Once alone and starving, Sandy’s story has a very happy ending

On Day 2 of Adopt-a-Dog-Month, we wanted to share the very special story of Sandy and Bill.

Sandy, a stray 7-year-old Chow mix dog, who roamed an industrial park south of Boston for over a year was an animal in desperate need of rescue.

Through all four seasons, she endured the harsh New England weather just barely surviving before the ARL Rescue Team received a call about her this past January.  The team successfully rescued her just in time on one of the coldest days of the year.

Because of the prolonged exposure to rain and snow, Sandy had lost a majority of her fur.  Her skin red and raw, her body exhausted and emaciated, she spent most of her first few days at our Boston adoption center cowering behind her bed.

With intensive medical and behavioral care,  along with plenty of love and attention from staff and volunteers, Sandy slowly began to heal.  In the video below shot several weeks into her stay with us, though the fur on her tail had yet to grow back,  you can see that Sandy was already a different dog!

After  several months in Boston without finding a permanent home, the Brewster adoption center brought Sandy down to the Cape.  Almost six months to the day when she was rescued from the cold, Sandy met Bill.

Sandy and Bill enjoying time together at home.

Sandy and Bill enjoying time together at home.

Like Sandy, Bill had come to the Brewster shelter in the hopes of  finding a companion. He recently lost his wife and best friend, Helen. In a further crushing blow, his beloved dog, Haven, passed away the day after Helen’s funeral.   With so much loss in his life, Bill had become very lonely.

After hearing her story and realizing that she was also looking for someone to love, Bill decided to take her home.

In the short time they have been together, Sandy and Bill’s bond has only gotten stronger. The two have become an inseparable pair – sometimes it’s hard to recognize who rescued who!

Sandy wakes Bill up every morning for their daily routine of a walk and a visit with Helen
at the cemetery.

“We are great buddies,” Bill says of Sandy, his face beaming. “I love her.”

Together, Sandy and Bill remind us that sometimes one rescue means two lives saved.

October is Adopt-a-Shelter-Dog month!

To Supporters of Puppy Doe: Thank You!

Quincy PD and Norfolk County DA only organizations issuing official updates

(photo credit: Animal Rescue League of Boston)

Within hours of appealing to the public for information, investigators had several leads in the Puppy Doe case which they continue to pursue.  Special note: The Quincy Police Department and the Norfolk County District Attorney’s office are the only organizations issuing official updates on the case to the public and the media.

Everyone at the ARL remains hopeful on the outcome of the ongoing investigation.

We also wanted to take a moment to thank all the people we’ve heard from, offering support not only for our efforts in her case, but also the work we do all year long to prevent animal cruelty and neglect.

The level of abuse in the Puppy Doe case is the worst we have seen in a very long time, yet every day we assist in cases which are equally as heart-breaking and tragic.  Sadly, the ARL assisted in over 1,500 cruelty and neglect cases in Massachusetts last year—most of which never made the headlines.

To date, we’ve received over $35,000 for law enforcement efforts on behalf of Puppy Doe and others like her.  We don’t receive public funding for any of the work we have done and continue to do in this case, and feel humbled by the generosity of so many.

Working with the Quincy Police Department, we offered a $5,000 reward late last Friday with the intention of keeping the momentum in the flow of information going through the weekend.  Of the funds donated to us on behalf of Puppy Doe to date, $5,000 will go to the reward and the remainder will go to preventing future cases of animal suffering, cruelty, and neglect.

While we have no plans to increase our reward amount, there are other organizations independent of the ARL that have offered rewards for information in the case.

We recognize you have many choices available and understand if you would like to give specifically to a reward fund.  We urge you to use due diligence in evaluating the organizations collecting reward funds to make sure they are a legitimate non-profit organization.

If you would like to donate to the ARL, please visit arlboston.kintera.org/puppydoe

When someone asked us the other day if we felt surprised by the magnitude of the response to the case of Puppy Doe, we answered yes and no.

Yes, in that we didn’t expect the instantaneous outpouring of support and concern for her, and the issue of animal cruelty in general.

At the same time, though, it’s not that surprising.

In our line of work, we see the tremendous impact animals have on people—in big and small ways—every day.  Whether it’s the companionship they provide; the fun and laughter they bring to family life; or assistance in day-to-day living and work, animals mean a great deal to us.

So when something so horrific happens to an animal that had no way to ask for help, it makes us all want to stand up and shout on her behalf.


Paws for Celebration Raffle-Sneak Peek!

Paws for Celebration is this Saturday, June 22 and we have a wide variety of raffle prizes to give away thanks to our generous sponsors. Here are some of our favorites, but there are many, many more. You can view the complete list onlineIf you haven’t done so yet, be sure to register for the dog walk today!

PawsRaffleBostonRedSocksTicketsRed Sox Fan Package 2

  • 2 Boston Red Sox /Yankees Tickets.  August 16th game.
  • Pedro Ciriaco Autographed Baseball

Dine Around Cape Cod Package 2

  • Dinner for Two at Twenty-Eight Atlantic, Wequassett Resort
  • PawsSignedBaseballDinner for Two at Anthony’s Cummaquid Restaurant
  • $100 Gift Card to Bleu Restaurant
  • $100 Gift Card to Moby Dick’s Restaurant
  • $50 Gift Certificate to The Impudent Oyster
  • $50 Gift Certificate to Napi’s Restaurant
  • $50 Gift Certificate to Laurino’s Tavern
  • $50 Gift Certificate to Cape Sea Grille Restaurant

For the Spoiled Pet (& Owner)PawsDoggyGifts

  • Crypton Cat Comfy Spot Bed from CARE
  • “Haute Houndz” dog coat
  • Gift Basket from The Honest Kitchen (food and treats)
  • Large selection of Nylabone products
  • Coleman portable pop-up travel dog bed
  • $40 Gift Certificate to Lighthouse Pet Sitting
  • Owner & Pet Portrait Session with Julia Cumes Photography
  • $65 Ungerdogs Grooming Salon Gift Certificate
  • Thundershirt (size of your choice)
  • One hour consultation/problem solving with the Animal Rescue League of Boston’s behaviorist
  • Dog house from Stello Construction