Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Make it a Canine Christmas! DIY Dog Ornaments

It's a Doggy Christmas

We are hosting a Christmas Tree at the Historic Market House in Meadville, PA this year. The theme is "Winter Tales" .. so how about some Dog TAILS!  Sue has put the word out for donations of small stuffed dog ornaments to make this a tree "Gone to the Dogs".

I started poking around for an easy pattern to make my own stuffed dog and found lots of ideas!  I figured that other dog lovers might appreicate these, too.

If you are feeling crafty, why not make a dog or two!  If you are in our area and want to have your pup included on our tree, we need them by November 24th.  For more information email Sue at .  Find out more about this event and so much more going on at the Conneaut Lake Bark Park at

Here are the cute felt dogs I found:
This one is for a key ring, but it's perfect for an ornament!
Felt dog key ring pattern 

The author of this site also shows how she made a custom made pattern for her "mutt" from a photo.
Classic Hound pattern

The crafter at Rag Doll Rising created the pattern for "Sparky".  I think he is adorable!
Sparky Pattern

North East of Eden has the pattern for Get Along Little Doggies.  I love the "homemade" look of this!

I would use this pattern with white felt and color in a pattern for a beagle or spaniel!  Stuffed Dog pattern

I found this pattern on!  Let it Snow Dog pattern

This pattern is for a felt dog magnet, but I think it would be very simple to eliminate the magnet and insert a piece of ribbon to hang it on your tree!  Felt Dog Magnet

This pattern's title is Pet Labrador, no picture but there is a link on the site:

And ... I found some additional dog and puppy craft ideas on Squidoo:

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Tamarack Agility Trials 2012

Public Welcome!

The Tamarack Dog  Agility Trials will be at the bark park facility from July 27-29, Friday until Sunday afternoon.  
  •  Friday 9:00-12:30
  •  Saturday 9:00 – 4:30
  •  Sunday 9:00 – 1:30
Entrance and parking are FREE!  Leashed, well behaved dogs welcome.  There are bleachers, but it might be a good idea to bring a chair.

Bark Park Members

The trials will be set up on the old softball field area, behind the trailer.  A food concession area will probably be set up near the port-o-john.  During the weekend, please follow the guidelines listed below.

  1. The small dog area/puppy area will be for use by the agility trial people the entire weekend and will be totally closed to bark park individuals.
  2.  Therefore, the large dog area and the training area will be for use ONLY by bark park members.
  3.  Since some of the members use the area exclusively for their dogs, please try to be considerate of other members and do not stay in the area for over 20-30 total minutes during a visit.
  4.   If you are walking on the property, I suggest you keep your dog on a leash when you are near any of the campers, motor homes, etc. 
  5.  On Saturday afternoon, from 2-4:00 Mary Knierman is having a birthday party in the training area for Pumpkin.
  6.  Other than that, most of the agility people will be gone by late Sunday afternoon.
  7.   If you come to watch the trials, remember, dogs MUST be on a leash.
  8.   Refreshments will be available for spectators and people competing.

Any questions, post a comment. Sue should be on the property the entire weekend, so if you have a concern, look for her on the grounds at the trials or call her at 814-671-2809.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Dock Diving Summer Fun Event

On Saturday, June 23rd, Conneaut Lake Bark Park Dock Diving Club will hold a “Summer Fun Dock Diving Event”.  The event is open to anyone that wants to participate and have an opportunity to see how their “high flying dog” could compare in a registered dock diving event and a chance to better understand the procedures associated with competitive dock diving.   
Registration will open at 9:00 with the first splash (class) to start at 10:00. Open dock will be from 9:00 until 10:00.  We will have 3 sets of splashes and also the extreme vertical.  The splashes will be $5.00 each and you can enter in one or all three.  Finals will follow shortly after the last splash.  If you qualify for finals they will be free. The schedule is as follows.

9:00 – 10:00    Registration
10:00              Splash #1
                      Splash #2
                      Extreme Vertical
                      Splash #3

We will run the first splash and take a 15 min break then the 2nd splash and a 15 min break  and so on.  Ribbons will be awarded to the winners. Any questions on procedures, cost, etc.,  please feel free to call Sherry at           814-336-9442.
Find out more about Dock Diving at Conneaut Lake Bark Park:


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Sadie, the Therapy Dog


People seem to come to Therapy Dog work through different channels and for different reasons.

When my husband and I married 36 years ago, our wedding gift to each other was a Cocker Spaniel puppy that we named "Gus". It didn't take long until we were a multi-dog household. All I had ever known as a kid was having dogs as pets. Jim and I had wonderful dogs with great personalities.

About 15 years ago, we were given a yellow Labrador puppy. Her owners couldn't handle her so they decided to "give her to Deb and Jim". Her name was Sadie. She was the most difficult dog we have ever owned.

Sadie and Debbie Ski Jorring
Her biggest problem was food aggression. Also, she was so hyperactive that her eyes were always dilated and I actually had to teach her that she could be still for a while. Of course, on the "up" side, she was never tired and could do things for a very long time. I taught her to Ski Jor, which is pulling a cross country skier. She loved it because she could run forever.

I looked for a dog training school and found Attaboy Dog Obedience in the yellow pages. I signed Sadie up and she excelled in obedience. The owner/operator told me about a local small therapy dog program called "Paws Hand Delivered". We tested for it and Sadie completed the test perfectly.

When you do have a therapy dog, it is important that you know your dog. The most important thing during your visits is your dog, his/her comfort, and safety. Therapy Dogs are not robots. Some don't like certain facilities, some don't like children, and some only want to visit when they feel like it. Even though Sadie was a therapy dog, the food aggression didn't disappear. If we were visiting and a patient asked to feed the dogs, we left the room immediately.

Sadie was an exceptional therapy dog. She would carefully step among cords and tubes to let someone pet her and then cautiously back out, never making a misstep. She would approach people slowly and make sure that nothing was disturbed during her visit. She amazed me when we visited the skilled nursing areas where the patients are seriously ill.

By now, I was totally hooked on therapy dog work so we also joined a hospice program. Again, Sadie was quiet and soft when visiting people. And I had my new dog, Sophie, a Brussels Griffon, tested. Now I had two therapy dogs.

I had worked for many years in Human Services. Now I was impressed by how much I could help people by working through my dogs. The patients could talk about dogs they used to have and happier times they remembered. The softness of the dogs eased sore hands and tiny dogs could be held like children. When holding Sophie one evening, a lady said that it had been many years since she had held a dog.

Therapy Dog work takes you out of yourself. It's not about you. It is about the patient and your dog and you are the facilitater. And in coming outside of yourself, you actually gain more than you ever thought you could.

If you have a dog with good manners that interacts nicely with people, you may want to consider having your dog tested to be a Therapy Dog. There will be testing on June 16, 2012, at the Conneaut Lake Bark Park. You can also contact the Bark Park for information on what the test is like and what you need to know beforehand.

Sadie and Sophie are no longer with us. Now Bunny and Abu are my therapy dogs and Opie and Isaac are "in the wings" to become therapy dogs. This is something I want to do for a very long time.
Debbie Myers

You also might be interested in:

Monday, June 4, 2012

Life with Opie: Finding Opie

Opie looking his best for Basic Obedience
Graduation Day.

Opie is now one year old. 

He is a black and white Pit Bull/Labrador mix. His mother was named Oreo and was a black and white Pit Bull. His dad was a silly yellow Lab.

We found Opie after 4 days of whining in the tree line at the back of the property. We had looked for 4 days but he was hard to find because he was black and kept hiding from us. On the 4th day, hunger and fleas brought him to us. He was about 6 weeks old.

The "breeder" said we could keep him so our first order of business was to get him healthy. With his happy personality and his "I can do this" attitude, that didn't take long.

Opie recently graduated from Advanced Obedience. The thing to remember when you take Obedience classes is that they are your starting place. The pups don't leave all trained and ready for off leash activities. You still need to work with your dog regularly so that those new skills become routine.

In Opie's case, he was what I call a Winter Puppy. A lot of his puppyhood took place in the winter when it was hard to find groups of people to pet him and to socialize him. Because of his love of every person and every dog, he has some immature and rude behaviors because he isn't totally socialized.

That is our goal for this summer, to learn manners and to practice all his commands out in The World.
I'll keep you posted on his progress!

Life with Opie: A Dock Diver!

Opie the Swimmer
Opie loves the water. He learned to swim in our little pond before our Newfoundland puppy did.

At the Hot Diggity Dog event at the Bark Park on May 19, I took Opie with me. Ron Oswald and his Doberman, Ruby, were going to the pond so we joined them. Ruby was running into the pond and jumping into the water and Opie, with his dramatics, was crying, touching the water, and fussing. Eventually, he stepped in.

I threw Opie's bumper into the water a few feet and again, after the dramatics, he went in and got it. Then I threw it about 5 feet, then 8 feet and finally, Opie just leapt off the side of the pond into the water.

He LOVED it!! He was so excited. I threw it several times and Opie jumped into the water each time with such joy.

Then Ron said that I should try him on the dock. The Bark Park has an official Dock Diving dock with classes for beginners and advanced dogs.

I wasn't sure about this but I took Opie up on the dock and showed him the end of it with the drop and then threw his bumper. Off he went! And then he jumped off 4 more times. Opie had a wonderful day.

When we got home, Opie came to me several times in the evening and put his head on my lap as if to say "Thanks Mom. I had a great day." Going to the Bark Park for Opie is like going to Doggy Disney World.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Tips for Camping with Your Dog

It's time for Summer get-a-ways and family vacations.  If your vacation plans include camping with your dog along, here are some tips and links that you might find helpful!

Safety First 

  • Make sure your dog's vaccinations are current and that you have adequate supplies of any medications he may need.  It's the great outdoors and the Fleas, Ticks and other biting insects will be plentiful, so preventative applications are going to help.  
  • Put together a Doggie First Aid Kit with items like: ear & eye drops, tick tweezers, bandages, antiseptic, rubbing alcohol and poison absorb gel for pets.
  • Take precautions in case your dog gets lost, keep identification on him.  Make sure your dog is tagged with contact information. at the very least.  Micro chipping or tattooing is a much better method as collars and tags can become damaged and lost.

Keeping Tabs on Your Dog

  • Consider a "Play Pen" for your dog.  There are many options for folding wire pens to give your pooch room to play, yet keep them away from campfires, etc.
  • Bring extra leashes and ropes.  If you are in a campground, you will be required to keep you dog on a leash.  You can also make a zip line tying a rope between two trees and suspending a leash from it.  *It is recommended to use a harness with the zip line, as your dog may pull and choke. NEVER tie your dog up with a choke or pinch collar on.

Food & Water

  • Avoid upset stomachs by bringing plenty of your dog's regular food.  Make sure you have packed enough clean drinking water for everyone, including your dog.  Our dogs can get sick from drinking lake, stream or puddle water, so don't encourage it.  Bring a container to pour bottled water into if you are out hiking or playing.  Also, if you are getting lots of exercise from hiking, etc., you are building up an appetite and so is your dog.  He may need extra food to make up for all the fun you are having!

Bring Familiar Items for Sleeping and Play

  • Having familiar toys and blanket/sleeping pad will help your dog feel better about being in a strange place.

Plenty of Exercise

  • Exercise is a stress reliever for all of us, including our dogs.  Plus, the bonus of a well exercised dog...he's tired!  Get out and explore.  If you are camping in Western Crawford County, PA..come visit us at the Conneaut Lake Bark Park!
Need more information? These links just might make your tail wag!
Do you have some "Camping with Your Dog" tips to share? Post them in the comments!

Therapy Dog Testing in June!

Did you ever think about having a certified therapy dog?  It is without a doubt one of the most rewarding volunteering experience.  There are several therapy dog organizations available but the Conneaut Lake Bark Park is associated with Therapy Dogs Incorporated
One of our Paws Hand Delivered dogs during a visit.

Therapy dogs should be

You also might find these links interesting:

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

I Survived The 2012 Canine Carnival T-Shirt

Order your "I Survived The 2012 Canine Carnival T-shirt"

Help support the Conneaut Lake Bark Park and let all your friends know "I Survived The 2012 Canine Carnival"
  • White Poly Cotton Blend T-Shirt
  • Men's sizes S, M, L, XL, XXL
  • Payment is secure through PayPal


For more information about the Conneaut Lake Bark Park and our events, contact Sue Anderson at

Friday, May 4, 2012

The Importance of Socializing Your Dog: Dogs Need Friends, Too

Copper & Henry at the
Conneaut Lake Bark Park 2012
Dogs need continued socialization throughout their lives.  Many dog owners, by attending training classes,  have taken the first step in socializing their dogs.  

With the Conneaut Lake Bark Park, owners have an opportunity to continue to provide opportunities for their dogs to socialize and play with other dogs of similar temperament and size, while providing a place where their canine companion can participate and play safely with other dogs. 

Conneaut Lake Bark Park Play Groups 

The Bark Park will work with pet owners and attempt to find groups of dogs that can play together.  The Bark Park encourages all owners to consider bringing their dog to the bark park and joining a play group. 

 At present we have a group that meets during the morning hours and another group that primarily meets in the late afternoon or week-ends.  Both of these groups regularly using the bark park have been the larger and sometimes the “crazier” dogs.  Dogs of all sizes and breeds can definitely benefit from regular play time with dogs of similar size and temperament. 

The Bark Park would like to work with all dog owners from puppies to older dogs to establish group play times at the park.  For more information about our Play Groups, contact Sue Anderson at

Need some help understanding how to socialize your dog?

Local Dog Trainer, Katara Peters, offers Puppy through Advanced Obedience Training.  Katara also  assists in Temperament Testing at the Bark Park.  We encourage you to enroll your dog in an obedience class in your area.  Interested in talking to Katara?  You can contact her at

Here are some helpful links:
We welcome you and your dog to Come, Sit, Stay! at the Conneaut Lake Bark Park very soon!  Check out our 2012 Dog Friendly Events at our website

~Sue Anderson

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Things A Dog Must Remember

  1. The garbage collector is not stealing our stuff.
  2. I do not need to suddenly stand straight up when I'm lying under the coffee table.
  3. I will not roll my toys behind the fridge, behind the sofa, or under the bed.
  4. I must shake the rainwater out of my fur before entering the house.
  5. I will not eat the cats' food, before they eat it or after they throw it up.
  6. I will stop trying to find the few remaining pieces of clean carpet in the house when I am about to get sick.
  7. I will not throw up in the car.
  8. I will not roll on dead seagulls, fish, crabs, etc. just because I like the way they smell.
  9. "Kitty box crunchies," although they are tasty, are not food.
  10. I will not eat any more Kleenex or napkins and then redeposit them in the back yard after processing.
  11. The diaper pail is not a cookie jar.
  12. I will not chew my humans' toothbrushes and not tell them.
  13. I will not chew crayons or pens, especially not the red ones, or my people will think I am hemorrhaging.
  14. When in the car, I will not insist on having the window rolled down when it's raining outside.
  15. We do not have a doorbell. I will not bark each time I hear one on TV.
  16. I will not steal Mom's underwear and dance all over the backyard with it.
  17. The sofa is not a face towel. Neither are Mom's & Dad's laps.
  18. My head does not belong in the refrigerator.
  19. I will not bite the officer's hand when he reaches in for Mom's driver's license and car registration.
  20. I will not play tug-of-war with Dad's underwear when he's on the toilet.
  21. I will not eat mint-flavored dental floss out of the bathroom garbage, to avoid having a string hanging out of my butt.
  22. I will not use "roll around in the dirt" as an option just after getting a bath.
  23. Sticking my nose into someone's crotch is not an acceptable way of saying hello.
  24. I will not hump on any person's leg just because I think it is the right thing to do.
  25. I will not fart in my owners' faces while sleeping on the pillow next to their heads.
  26. I will not come in from outside and immediately drag my butt across the carpet.
  27. The toilet bowl is not a never ending water supply, and just because the water is blue, it doesn't mean it is cleaner.
  28. I will not sit in the middle of the living room and lick my crotch when company is here.
  29. Suddenly turning around and smelling my butt can quickly clear a room.
  30. The cat is not a squeaky toy, so when I play with him and when he makes that noise, it's usually not a good thing.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Come, Sit, Stay ... GO!

Conneaut Lake Park Dock Diving Meeting
Sometimes reaching a speed of just over 30 miles an hour while running for a distance of 35- 40 feet, the flying dock diving dogs  can provide a new sport for local pet owners and their canine companions. 

The  Conneaut Lake Bark Park Dock Diving Dogs Club will hold its first meeting of 2012 at Perkins Restaurant, Meadville, at 2:00 pm on Sunday, April 22nd, in the back room.   The dock diving instructor is Marty Schlossnagel from Grove City. The meeting will cover practice schedules, classes,  dock diving activities at the Bark Park, and plans for special events. 

Any dog and any breed could be a potential dock diving dog.    The most important item in dock diving is to find the toy or item your dog is absolutely crazy about and is willing to bring back to you.  Dogs are also permitted to wear a safety vest if necessary when dock diving.  

Come to the meeting and find out about this great, exciting canine activity. Additional information is online  or email Marty at  or call Sue at 814-382-2478.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Martin Speaks, brains behind bark park

                Dogs of Crawford County, the time has come….For the past four years I have been helping my human publish articles and newsletters about Conneaut Lake Bark Park.  Even though she has plastered my picture all over the place, she has never once recognized me for my hard work or acknowledged me as the real brains in this organization. Enough is enough!
                It’s time for me to write my own articles for all of my canine buddies out there – dog-to-dog. From now on, I’m going to dedicate my talents to letting all of my canine friends know everything about Conneaut Lake Bark Park; events, training classes, long term plans, the works.  And if I need any help with my own articles, I’m going to ask some of my best Park buddies like Ruby, Spyce, and Bella to help spread the news. I mean, why should our humans have the only say about what goes on at the Bark Park anyway?
                Hopefully you will find a way to read my articles or at least have your human tell you about them. Maybe you can take a sneak peak while you are fetching the newspaper for your human, or try distracting them by turning on the TV to get your paws on the paper. Then all you need to do is leave it open to my page and put it on the sofa or the bed - somewhere where they can’t miss it. In no time you’ll be on your way to the bark park and a whole lot of fun! Besides  inviting you to come, mix it up  and play with everyone at the park, I’ll be sure to pass along important information to you every time they  have an event ,  a training class, etc. that you just won’t want to miss.  I check for messages when my human is working, so if you have questions, just email me at
                The Fourth Anniversary  Bark Park season kicks off with Hot Diggity, Dog Diggity Day on May 19th.  This is shaping up to be a fun event for us and our humans, so start dropping hints everywhere you can. They’re having hot dogs – my favorite! And don’t forget to look for more information in the next edition of my very own article,   ”Martin Speaks”