Friday, July 29, 2011

Doggone Safe Named as Finalist for a Classy Award!

The CLASSY Awards is the largest philanthropic awards ceremony in the USA, recognizing the most outstanding philanthropic achievements by charities, businesses and individuals nationwide.

More than 2,000 nominations were submitted to StayClassy for consideration. After a vetting process, StayClassy posted each nomination as an article on the CLASSY Awards Achievements Blog ( to put a national spotlight on amazing philanthropic stories. Doggone Safe rallied their supporters to generate at least 100 Facebook ‘Likes’ on their article to qualify them for the judging round. Out of thousands of nominations, the judges narrowed the list down to the Top 25 most inspiring and impactful in each category. Doggone Safe is a finalist in the category: Most Effective Awareness Campaign.

The Top 10 Finalists will be determined by public vote and announced on August 30th. The winners will be recognized live on-stage at the Oscars-style CLASSY Awards ceremony in San Diego on September 17th.

A Charitable Event to Remember

The 3rd Annual CLASSY Awards competition will culminate at a red-carpet awards ceremony on Saturday, September 17 in San Diego, California. It will feature celebrity appearances, chart-topping music talent, nonprofit and technology leaders, and thousands of CLASSY Awards supporters. More than $150,000 in cash and prizes will be donated to support the charitable efforts of the 12 National CLASSY Awards Winners.

This year’s CLASSY Awards weekend will also feature the CLASSY Collaborative, a day-long networking event on Friday, September 16 at the W Hotel San Diego. Participants will have the opportunity to meet, mingle and share ideas with some of the foremost leaders in philanthropy, technology, innovation, and entertainment.

How You Can Help

Doggone Safe needs your vote in order to make it into the top 10. Doggone Safe is a finalist in the category: Most Effective Awareness Campaign. You may also like to vote in some of the other categories to help support other terrific charities. There are two others who are helping Doggone Safe with promotion and we hope that you will take a look and consider giving them your vote as well. These are:

Rock to Stop Violence - Rock N Roll movement to end violence and abuse and to seek support for survivors of violence and abuse. Finalist for Best New Charity

Amanda Evrard - Amanda is the the volunteer coordinator of Helotes Humane Society, and also volunteers with Homeward Bound and San Antonio Great Dane Rescue. Finalist for Young Non-Profit Leader of the Year.

CLICK HERE to vote

Webinar - Incorporating Dog Bite Prevention in Dog Classes

Doggone Safe and APDT are pleased to offer a webinar for dog trainers and dog behavior consultants on how to incorporate dog bite prevention education into dog classes and private consults. Every trainer and behavior consultant has many opportunities to help dog owners learn how to read dog body language, reduce stress and anxiety for their dog and increase safety for their children and others that the dog might encounter.

This webinar, presented by certified dog behavior consulant Jennifer Shryock will cover the the following topics:

  • Observation skills for the client
    • Dog body language 
      • Key signs
      • Tools you can use
    • Proximity check 
    • Reducing anxiety 
  • Incorporating teachable moments into your classes
  • Demonstrations that you can do with dogs in class
    • Handling 
    • Resource guarding 
    • Be a tree
    • Puppy biting
  • Dog bite prevention in the community - how this can benefit your business

Date: August 18, 2011
Time: 3:00 - 4:30 PM (EDT)
Cost: $15.00 for Professional Members
$25.00 for Full/Associate Members
$50.00 for Non-Members
Register Online
    For more information or to register, please click here.

    Thursday, July 28, 2011

    How to Help Your Child Emotionally After a Dog Bite

    Child psychiatrist Dr. R. Larry Schmitt has been very concerned about the welfare of dog bitten children. Dr. Schmitt has been very helpful to Doggone Safe and to dog bite victims by providing us with information for parents and for spreading the word in the medical community about the importance of emotional support and counseling for dog bite victims.
    The typical dog bite on a child hits them at or above their shoulders. Such attacks equate to that of a bear attack on an adult, in terms of the shock, overwhelming fear and residual stress. The emotional impact on the child and the adult is huge. The difference is the adult will talk about their experience until the day they can no longer speak. The child will not talk about it and greatly needs to. This is because the child sees the sad faces of his parents anytime the topic comes up. They remain silent to save their parents from additional grief. So the child keeps this emotion load locked up in his mind. Parents must repeatedly encourage and allow their child to talk about the accident and their feelings.
    R. Larry Schmitt, M.D. Child Psychiatrist
    Read more in a article by Dr. Schmitt published in the journal Contemporary Pediatrics.

    Here are the answers to some frequently asked questions from parents supplied by Dr Schmitt and published at the Doggone Safe website:

    How soon after the incident should I start talking to my child about it? 

    Immediately! It is important to completely avoid making any comments about your own feelings other than to express your regret that it happened.
    How many times per day should we talk about it? 
    For the first few days at least twice a day followed by once a day for the following three weeks.
    For how long after the incident should we keep talking about it?
    Depending on the degree of fright and injury, until the parental waves of guilt are close to flat and/or the child shows easy emotion, not suppressed or keyed up emotion when it is discussed.
    What if my child starts to cry? 
    Try saying something like, “Wow, I see it really hurts/frightens/upsets you. It is so good for you to let me see how you feel about the dog biting you.”
    What if my child withdraws or becomes irritated and refuses to talk? 
    This is very likely a sign that it may be time for trauma counseling with a mental health expert.  Say to the child, "Are you worried about how talking about it makes me feel?  If you are, please understand that I am a grown-up and can handle such feelings of being sad because you were injured. This will help you to look at all the feelings that came from that dog attack.”
    What if my child insists that he is fine and doesn't want to talk about it anymore?
    Reply to the child, “That may be right". (This is true if the parent notes that it has been discussed a great deal with a noticeable decrease in affect/emotion). Then say  “I want to think about it some more.”  Later, if the child still seems reluctant to talk and bothered by the topic,” I notice that any mention of it finds your face changing as if it still hurts.”  “How about drawing a picture of the dog attack scene, before, during and after?”
    What kinds of questions or statements can I use to engage my child in a conversation?
    In an intact family, observing  parents conversing with each other about the accident and making gentle guesses about how the child thinks and feels about the attack. “I still think about the day when the dog hurt and scared you, do you?”  “Sometimes I feel really mad about that dog biting you.”  “I saw a dog barking at me when I was jogging today. I remembered what happened to you and was scared when the dog barked!”

    With teenagers, whose skills in talking about a dog attack are probably closer to that of an adult you might say something like:  “What do your friends say about the dog attack?”;  “How many others at your school have been bitten by dogs?”; “ If you find you are dreaming about the attack or thinking about it a lot and you do not want to, consider this paradox, that talking about it with anyone will reduce such dreams and thoughts.”
    What are the signs that my child needs professional help? 
    The big ones are decreased success at school, (both socially and academically), lack of pleasure from past enjoyments, and early resistance to speak about the attack. Watch for dog phobia, avoidance of other animals, or the appearance of other new fears and anxieties.

    When in doubt seek a mental health consultation and if the parents have doubts about the recommendations/conclusions of that first consultant, seek a second opinion.  Consider an analogous  situation with a post-surgical issue.  The surgeon says they think an abscess developed out of sight with minimal symptoms that if ignored will cause problems later.  Of course, with an x-ray or digital exam it may be evident.   A competent child mental health expert can be expected to probe in an interview and demonstrate an emotional abscess.
    What should I look for in a mental health professional?
    First, one who works with children; second, one with at least a five-year record in the field; third, a referral from a trusted mental health professional, and most of all, one with whom the parent feels comfortable. I prefer one who works with the child and parents together and spends less time with the child individually. In other words, family oriented therapy.
    How do we know when to stop the therapy? 
    This obviously varies with the severity, both physical and emotional, of the injury. Assuming the child and family have a positive relationship with a competent therapist, the therapist should suggest when to stop. If the parents are concerned that it is going on too long they should suggest a hiatus of four to eight weeks, observe the child during that time and return for termination in the absence of symptoms. In the typical situation, success comes early, with promoting the child and family to discuss all aspects of the attack and its potential residuals. (2-6 sessions).

    Wednesday, July 13, 2011

    Dog Training Infographic

    Dog Training Facts and Figures graphic Dog Training graphic created by Pet365. Click here to see the full size version.
    Dog Training Stats Infographic

    Click here to see the full size graphic and view the underlying source data