Follow The Leader, A quick lesson in dog walking.

Welcome to Daisy’s rescue, Today our topic is dog walking. We see a lot of people trying to walk their dogs, and sometimes we wonder who is walking whom. Denise Lynn is one of our guest writers and she will discuss how to easily walk your dog.


When it comes to your dog the old cliché that a “good dog is a tired dog” may indeed be an old statement but is still unanimously true. Sadly, few pet owners show any real ability to walk their dogs correctly these days. This is especially disappointing because it is such a key component to excellent overall pet behavior. Let’s face it, we all dread walking past the owners who are out on the sidewalk with their arms at full extension, shoulder rolled forward and total lack of control over their animal. Being faced with a bad mannered or overly exuberant dog is never something anyone looks forward to. And this is precisely the reason I find myself biting my tongue and uttering a simple polite greeting, as I cross to the other side of the street, allowing chaos to continue on its way without me. This behavior is easily corrected however, and this essay can tell you the right techniques to curb your dog on a walk and avoid the need for a chiropractor afterwards. With the right equipment, posture, and consistency anyone can learn to correctly walk their dog.

“Exercise for your dog is every bit as important as it is for you” (Huntington). Let’s start by getting the right equipment for your particular breed. Whether you’re the owner of a large or small dog the use of a properly fitted collar, leash, or harness for your breed size is all you need to make your walks comfortable and enjoyable for both of you. A dog’s collar should be soft, flexible and worn at all times providing two fingers width of room underneath it for the dog’s ease of movement. The correct collar should also include contact information for the owner in case of unintended separation at the dog park. If you are a small dog owner a harness will be your next purchase. Harnesses hold the dog by the chest region and distribute tension removing the danger of larynx collapse if either of you pull the leash too hard. Leashes should be of the correct sturdiness for your individual dog’s size. A small dog needs a light leash with a longer length were as, a big dog needs something stronger and shorter after all he is taller.

Many people use the wrong equipment which can immediately doom your walk to failure. Using a choke chain or pronged collar is common practice to some people to give correction for bad behavior but, this will only illicit a negative response from your dog while also making him fear you. Painful choking is still just that, painful! Now ask yourself, why your dog would view walking as something they want to do if it’s constantly a pain in their neck? Likewise, a large heavy leash that isn’t absolutely necessary to secure him becomes an uncomfortable addition for any dog. These are just a few examples of how to make walks not only unpleasant and disagreeable for your pet, and also in some cases agonizing.

When it comes to walking your dog, a positive attitude and good body posture will take you far. Remember to exude an affirmative demeanor whenever you walk out the front door together. Keep your head held high and your shoulders back throughout your walk. Assign your pet his place at your side by shortening the leash, thus allowing him just enough room to walk confidently beside you. Then slacken the leash to a soft, relaxed tension and remember to be the leader whenever you walk. When you assert a leadership posture your dog will automatically follow. This also helps him recognize that he must always follow you and not the other way around. Continuously be the first to step into or out of any doorway and Spike will quickly come to understand the proper chain of command both on the walk and inside your household.

Let’s flash back to the vision we had earlier of the dog dragging the owner down the street by his lead. Not only will you need a chiropractor after not exuding the leadership role, you may also need Band-Aid’s. By permitting your dog to lead he will assume he is the boss and will take over the role whole heartedly, dragging you threw bushes or across busy streets. If you allow him the full length of leash he will use it to his advantage and to hang you both with it. Let’s face it, “Pulling on the leash and dragging the dog does not work. It only chokes the dog and prompts it to pull harder to get away from the choking” (Houck). So always start out on the right foot to avoid these obvious pitfalls.

The best tool at your command when walking your dog is the use of positive reinforcement for all good behaviors he exhibits. This simply put means to catch your dog doing the good behaviors and praise him for it. Said with a smile in your voice, praise alone will bring many happy returns. For example, if when you’re out walking, you happen upon another owner and their dog and Spike stays his course beside you without hesitation, make sure he knows he was a good dog, “Good boy!” In contrast, “A lot of people think hitting and yelling at a dog is training….But hitting and yelling is abuse and immediately removes the trust between a dog and its owner. Aggression begets aggression” (Houck). All of which will only serve to make your dog fearful and anxious. The ultimate goal of dog walking is a pup that is tired and relaxed so that you can both take a nap on the sofa together.

It’s also very important to always remain consistent with the rules, be sure to adhere to them each and every time you walk together. If you do, your dog will know exactly what is expected of him and perform better overall. Continuously respond to any negative behavior quickly, lead him back on track, and then praise him for a job well done. Vacillating back and forth with only the occasional correction will only confuse your pup and lead him to making bad behavior choices. This will facilitate the need for a lot more negative corrections when the goal is to accentuate the positive at every opportunity.

Nobody wants an over excited, wound up companion that chews furniture and knocks them over upon their arrival home. The addition of a regular walk, using the right equipment, and correct body posture, as well as, consistent reinforcement will result in a well-trained and relaxed dog. You both will be getting great exercise and increasing the bond between you. Good boy, Spike!

By Denise Lynn

Works Cited

Huntington, Ann. “Tips on how to Help Dog Get Exercise.” Toronto Star Dec 05 1991: F.6. OxResearch; ProQuest Central; ProQuest Health Management. 31 Mar. 2012.

Houck, Jeff. “Stay! Sit! Read! and Learn how to Train Your Dog.” Palm Beach Post Jan 18 1999: 1.D. OxResearch; ProQuest Central; ProQuest Health Management. 31 Mar. 2012.

Lilly’s Story from The National Mill Dog Rescue

Lilly’s Story reprinted with permission from The National Mill Dog Rescue



Sometimes it’s important to remind ourselves why we do what we do.Lily, wearing tag #251, crouched, suffering in a small wire cage at the auction. Breeding dogs were being sold to the highest bidder. Lily looked straight into Theresa’s ey…es that day and asked for help. Theresa purchased Lily and promised to “shower her with love until the day she died”. For the next 15 months Lily learned about being a dog. She learned about soft beds, belly rubs and rolling in the grass. But most importantly, Lily learned what love felt like. Despite surgeries and the best care possible, the 7 years of neglect at the puppy mill had taken its toll on her body. On May 13, 2008 Lily passed away. Theresa vowed, in Lily’s name, to take up the cause for the mill dogs and thus National Mill Dog Rescue was born. Please join us in our efforts. Share the story of Lily and the plight of mill dogs everywhere. Thank you.


Lily is the love and the light of my life. If you’ve ever had a special dog like Lily, then you will understand right away what I’m talking about. If you haven’t… read on.

Lilly and the wolfhound

When she came to me I took her to work everyday and she slept in the warmth of my Irish Wolfhound’s stomach. She slowly learned to trust and in seven months she would come to me to get on my lap! She now loves all humans as no one will ever hurt her again. As you can see from the picture on the right she has her silly moments and keeps a lookout so she won’t get caught.

Lilly in bed

Lily was born, raised and perhaps had 13 litters of puppies at the Reedgate Kennels before we were able to buy her at auction. Her time there was spent in a wire cage with a board to sleep on and a rabbit water bottle to drink from. While in the mill she received little or no vet care and because of this she lost all her teeth and her lower jaw rotted off, which is not unusual for the smaller breeds in the puppy mills. Everything that was precious to her was taken away (her puppies). The human hand brought only  misery.

Lily is my inspiration. She can teach anyone about love, courage and the ability to forgive. Unfortunately the cancer she acquired through years of neglect is now close to ending her life. I have promised her she will never be alone again and I will be with her at the end. To date she is responsible for saving over 7700  dogs as she is the inspiration and founder of MDRN.

Lily died in my arms May 13, 2008. She will be missed.

To all of Lily’s friends:

At 5:30 PM on Tuesday May 13, 2008, our little Miss Lily made her way to the Rainbow Bridge. Over the two days prior, the ever-present spark in her eyes faded and she had become so frail and weak, the abuses of her past finally catching up with her, surpassing her ability to keep up the fight. Tuesday evening our vet came to the house and helped her on her way. Rich and I buried her in a very quiet area in our back woods with Tasha and Molly and many of our dogs at our sides. Interestingly, the only moments of sunshine on an otherwise dreary day were right upon her grave as we laid her down. No surprise at all…. she loved the sunshine so much.

We are just devastated, especially my husband, who was Lily’s constant companion. Thank God we have a couple of rescue Iggy’s right now – despite that no dog could come close to replacing Lily, I think they will help fill the void a bit, strange little creatures that Iggy’s are.

When I think back to the day that I saw Lily crammed in the back of her cage at Reedgate Kennels, I whispered her a promise – “I will free you from this hell no matter what the cost and we will shower you with love until the day you die.” Our family can take pride in keeping every word of that promise, not knowing then what Lily would come to mean to so many people for so many reasons.

Lily was a serious dog, stripped of her ability to be a typically silly Italian Greyhound because during her first seven years of life she had no opportunity to move or socialize with what came to be her favorite thing in life – people. What she did find in herself in time though, was courage. When she found her courage, she let everyone know about it, climbing into the laps and arms of total strangers and sharing her very special love with everyone around her. No one walked away from Lily the same person. Her tiny, disfigured little self moved grown men to tears, many times. Over this past year, Lily and the story of her life educated hundreds of people about the plight of mill dogs and the realities of the commercial dog breeding industry. My husband believes that Lily is perhaps the most important dog in history (not that he is at all partial).

When Lily was rescued in February 2007, she suffered from several medical conditions. She had severe pyometria (infected uterus), several mammary tumors, and from years of no care her entire mouth was rotted to point that she was completely missing her lower jaw. The latter would prove to become life threatening as it eventually led to cancer. Lily was so brave through four surgeries and unspeakable amounts of pain as we worked so hard to improve the quality of her life. Unfortunately, the years of no care won over and we were unable to give her more than just over a year in our home. However, during this past year Lily knew nothing but love and she was truly a treasure in our home. She will always be “one of those dogs”, one you can never seem to let go of, one whose face you can see simply because you want to. To our family, Lily has made us stronger, kinder people and our world a better place to be.

We will continue the fight in Lily’s name to bring about permanent change in this criminal industry. Please join us in our efforts and tell everyone you know the story of Lily and the plight of mill dogs everywhere, as she continues to watch over them from the heavens.

Two of Lily’s friends have written poetry for her, please read it.

In Memory of Lily

She withstood her life of misery
Her cage was her domain
The hopelessness, the loneliness
She was a number with no name.

Her eyes had never glistened
No love, her heart had known
Her cries were never answered
Her doom was hers, alone.

Her body, torn and tattered
So weak, so thin and frail
Her small sweet face disfigured,
As she languished in her jail.

Like the others all around her
From neglect she lived in pain
Oh, humans void of heart and souls
Were surely those to blame.

Shrouded behind secrecy
They perpetuate their lies
The puppy mills breed misery
Kept hidden from our eyes.

Then breaking thru the darkness
An angel brought the light
Reaching down with kindness
To alleviate this plight.

And so a few were taken
To be given a new start
And a mission was now realized
From deep within a heart.

Discarded were the numbers,
Now Lily was her name
She was nurtured now and cared for
And the others, just the same.

She responded to the kindness
She was kissed upon her head
Each night as she lay sleeping
In her warm and cozy bed.

From beginnings that were tragic
Lily now embraced the love
But she would only stay a minute
She had lessons up above.

Her life brought inspiration
She taught her humans well
About courage and conviction
To save others from the hell.

Lily’s life had purpose
As she endured such strife and pain
She emerged with great forgiveness
Oh, her life was not in vain.

Now the cozy bed is empty
But Lily’s memory lingers still
And hundreds more will follow
…..Rescued from the mill.

Bari Mears
Copyright 2008


The National Mill Dog Rescue

Peyton, CO (east of Colorado Springs)

Toll free: (888) 495-DOGS
Local: (719) 495-7679
Media: (719) 445-6787
Sponsorships: (719) 445-6787
Grants/Foundations: (719) 495-7679
Donations: (719) 445-6787 Donation Page
Lost NMDR Dog: (719) 445-6787 Lost Dog Page
Relinquishing a Dog  (not NMDR dog) Please be aware we do not accept relinquished dogs.

USDA Website Access

This article is going to show you how to use the USDA’s APHIS (animal and plant health inspection service), web site to look up puppy mills (breeder’s), animal labs, and circus’s. Due to the freedom of information act the USDA now posts all inspection results. On the web site you can search, license status and inspection results. You can perform searches based on type of license, type of animal, state and citation.

We are going to go step by step on how to access the site.

USDA APHIS home screen

Type into your browser. Or click the link.That will take you to the APHIS home page.  Pic above.  Next you go to the left column on the home page. Under “browse by subject”, go to “animal welfare” and click on it. The above pic has “animal welfare” highlighted in green.    Now go to the right hand column on the Animal Welfare page. Under the picture of the elephant in the bottom right hand column is “view AWA Inspection Reports”. Click on “View AWA Inspection Reports”.USDA APHIS Inspection reports

Now you are at the Government Warning page. What it is saying, is that the government is allowed to view your computer and the data that is on it. Click “Agree”, if you want to view the inspection report.


Now we are on the A.C.I.S. or Animal Care Information System. It defaults to the basic search. Type “MARLIN ZIMMERMAN” in the search box and click search.

APHIS Marlin Zimmerman Basic search results

You will see Marlin Zimmerman, customer number, certificate number (which designates type of license breeder, broker, lab, etc). and the date of issue or cancellation. The kennel / Puppy mill’s address is on the right. Now, above the name and to the right of the highlighted “licensee/Registrant Information”, is “Inspection Information”, click that button.Zimmerman Inspection page

Here you see dates, and violations on the left. To see the inspection results, click on “Details” on the far right.

zimmerman inspection results

The results of the inspection is shown, the violations are listed along with the statute number. At the bottom of the page shows the number of dogs and puppies at the kennel / mill at the time of the inspection.

When an “inspection report” has been “Expanded”, the other inspections are still on the page, just in the “hidden” aspect.

If you look at the far upper right hand corner of the inspection box, you will see number like this  1-5 of 6 and then “Next”, this is to look at the next page of inspection reports, the website shows 5 at a time.

Now, lets look at the “Advanced Search” feature of the website.

USDA APHIS Advance seach page

Go up to the top of the page, the “basic” search option. Click on “Advanced” search. Below the “Advanced” search is “Optional Criteria Items” Box. Click on the box and you will see a drop down window with a bunch of options. Count down 5, and click on “Inspection Animal Categories”. You will see another window open next to the “Advance Search” window. Click on the window and pick an animal, for this pick Dogs. Go back to the “Advanced Search” window, under it is “Add Criteria Item”, click on it and the “Dogs”, will appear under the “Selected Criteria Items”.

USDA APHIS Advanced search dog

Now go back up to the “Optional Criteria Items”, box. Count down 12 and click on “Licensee/Registrant State”. Another new box opens that contains the “states”, click on “Pennsylvania”. Make sure you click on the “Add Criteria Item” button.

USDA APHIS Advanced search state and dog search ready

Click on the “Start Search” button. You will now see a list of Facilities that have dogs. The list just happens to be research Labs. This is the “Licensee / Registrant” results.

USDA APHIS Advanced Dog and State Search Results

To view inspection results you have to click on the “Inspection Results” button. Please remember, I do not run the USDA APHIS website. The site has a lot to be desired. I wish it was better and easier to use. Remember, this is our tax dollars at work. The best way to use the site is to just get on it and play with it, see how it works and what it’s limits and quirkiness are.

Let me know how you like this article.


Mama Petunia The story of an abused dog.


It’s been one month since I’ve crossed rainbow bridge. Jasmine and Snapdragon were too weak to carry on and have joined me at the bridge. As a mama you never leave your pups side, I have 7 lil angels to protect my babies there on earth. Wha…tever ounce of energy that was left in me when I passed, I sent to Huck, Caine and my darling Tulip. I watch them every day from the heavens. I miss them dearly but have full confidence in the human hands that touch them. This picture was taken of me on March 26th, 2 days after I entered the pound and 2 days before IPR rescued me. I was so thankful someone came for me. I kept telling the lil ones to hold on a few more days, someone would hear my prayers. I can see my caregivers weeping at times; for me, my lost babies and for the countless others that are abused. I wish they knew how magical rainbow bridge was. I don’t want them to be worried for me. My fur is shiny and full, my burns are healed and my heart is whole again. The love I received on earth put all the broken pieces back together. I never doubted the humans that surrounded me..the love was so strong our hearts all grew bigger. Please learn from my story and know you can make a difference no matter how small it is nor the outcome. People believed in me and took a chance to try to save my life. Keep sharing my story as well as others that desperately need a voice. I promise you, your heart will also grow bigger. Thank you for loving me (us) through the sadness. Forever indebted Mama Petunia. ♥♡♥♡♥♡♥♡
This is Petunia. She was 3 years old. Her face tells a story of animal cruelty. She was burned and beaten, all while pregnant with a litter of 10 puppies. “I was burned badly over 25% of my body. I was also hit by a car while I was pregnant with my pups.”