What A Difference A Dog Book Can Make.

Doug Koktavy, author of the award-winning book, The Legacy of Beezer and Boomer is making several stops in Florida this weekend. The New Barker dog magazine and TradeWinds Island Resorts on St. Pete Beach have partnered with several retailers to provide Doug with a venue in Sarasota, Apopka, Clearwater and Tampa. 50% of the book sales will be going to various rescue groups in Florida as a result. “Our goal is to sell 100 books and raise around $1,000 for each venue’s rescue group,” said Anna Cooke, editor of The New Barker.

And if Thanksgiving travel plans have you out-of-town during this five-day event, you can still purchase your book and have it signed by the author. The owners of each of the businesses hosting the events will hold onto your signed copy until you return. If you are a dog lover or know someone who is, The Legacy of Beezer and Boomer will make a thoughtful holiday gift, personally inscribed by the author. Beautifully illustrated by artist Chris Smith, the book is a gift that gives twice, knowing that 50% of the purchase price will be going to a Florida rescue group.

A bit about the book:
Doug’s beautiful Black Labradors, Beezer and Boomer both had terminal illnesses, but they left behind a legacy of amazing lessons. Doug wants pet owners to know that while you may be saying goodbye to your furry or feathered family member, these are not the worst of times, but the best. The book is much more moving and inspirational than it is sad. In fact, it was bestowed the prestigious Nautilus Book Award in April, 2010. The book is in good company with other Nautilus Book Award winners, including Deepak Chopra, MD and His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

“When we think about the days ahead without our cherished pet, we give in to the fear. We’re so afraid, in fact, that we’re actually missing out on what could be our pet’s best gift to us.”

Anyone living with companion pets should have a copy of this book in their library to refer back to from time to time. There are wonderful life lessons on the pages, things that one can put to use daily, in all relationships.

Doug’s first stop is this Friday evening in Sarasota for a wine reception at Wet Noses Dog Boutique in St. Armands Circle. Christine Baer, owner of Wet Noses said of the book, “When my dog Max was diagnosed with cancer, Anna told me about The Legacy of Beezer and Boomer. I went right out to purchase a copy and immediately read it. It was just so helpful for me. I absolutely loved the book, and I’m looking forward to meeting Doug this weekend. The reception is my way of saying thank you for writing such a wonderful book.”

The reception at Wet Noses will be from 5:30pm until 7pm. Wine and hors d’oeuvres will be served. A $5 donation is requested which will go towards the purchase of the book. Doug will be signing books, and 50% of the proceeds will be going to the Humane Society of Sarasota County.

“We’re thrilled that Doug is coming to Sarasota and helping us raise much-needed funds for the shelter,” said Executive Director, Deborah Millman. She added, “One thousand dollars will provide food for all our shelter pets for more than a month. It will provide health checks and spay/neuter for 20 orphans waiting to be adopted.”

On Saturday, Doug will then be at Media on Main in Downtown Sarasota from 10am until noon. He will give a presentation along with Bentley’s House, a local pet grief counseling group. This will be another Sarasota opportunity to get up close and personal with the author, have your book signed and again – 50% of the book sales will go to the Humane Society of Sarasota County. Contact Chris Baer at Wet Noses to reserve a copy of the book for either Friday’s or Saturday’s event. 941.388.DOGS (3647).

The rest of Doug Koktavy’s itinerary is as follows:
Sunday, November 28, 1p-3p
Centers for Animal Therapies/C.A.T., LLC
In Apopka. Call Jo at 407.869.1145
50% of book sales will go to the C.A.R.E. Foundation.
“One thousand dollars will provide a new roof for the pen area, housing four dogs, two goats, a pig and a tortoise,” said Christin Burford, Executive Director of the C.A.R.E. Foundation. “Each of these rescued animals works hand-in-hand with autistic children,” she added. Currently, the roof is a torn tarp.

Monday, November 29, 6:30p-8p
Fluffy Puppies, Clearwater
Call Kris at 727.446.7999
50% of book sales will go to Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida.
“One thousand dollars will treat five dogs for heartworms and provide annual shots for 20 dogs waiting to be adopted,” said Lise Amundrud, a volunteer with Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida. “We have more than 120 Labs in foster care right now and spend on the average, $450 per dog in medical costs. So, $1,000 will help offset our high medical expenses,” she added.

Tuesday, November 30, 6:30p-8p
Downtown Dogs, Hyde Park Village in Tampa
Call Rene at 813.250.DOGS
50% of book sales will go to TampaPets.org, a partnership between Hillsborough County Animal Services, Humane Society of Tampa Bay and about 60 rescue groups.
“One thousand dollars will go towards the 2011 Tampa Pet Adoption Expo Fund to ensure the expos will continue to remain free to rescue groups participating,” said Cory Cooper, board president of TampaPets.org.

Doug Koktavy is an attorney and now Certified Counselor, Association for Pet Loss and Bereavement. If you or someone you know has lost a pet or going through a pet’s terminal illness, come hear Doug talk. It could be the single, most inspirational thing you do all holiday season.


Anyone looking to add a new pet to the family unit, come to the Florida State Fairgrounds this Saturday, November 13. TampaPets.org, Hillsborough County Animal Services and the Humane Society of Tampa Bay come together with more than 40 rescue groups. Vendor spots have been sold out for some time. FREE PARKING. FREE ADMISSION. FREE FUN. Find that dream pup and make its dream come true.

The Rally to Restore Dogma.

November 2, 2010 – Today is Election Day in the United States. Once again, the nation’s eyes will be on Florida as its citizens vote for a new Governor in a hotly contested race. In an effort to get out the vote, The New Barker, Florida’s top dog lifestyle magazine, has organized dog owners for a Rally to Restore Dogma. Whether you are a Dogmacrat or Repuplican, let your bark be heard at the voting booths. Need to know who’s running for what in Florida? Go here: http://www.uselections.com/fl/fl.htm

All tongue-and-cheek aside, seriously, today is an important day in America.
Thankfully, whatever the outcome, life goes on with our dogs.

Friday, November 5 visit Taste Cafe in Safety Harbor for the unveiling of the Humane Society of Pinellas County’s 2011 Calendar. The suspense is finally over. Who made the calendar’s cover? Taste Cafe is located at 500 Main Street, Safety Harbor.

On Saturday, November 6 it’s the 4th Annual Wag-A-Palooza at Plaza Bella on Bloomingdale Avenue in Valrico. Hosted by the Merchants of Plaza Bella, the free event will feature rescue groups and their adoptables, valuable savings for holiday shopping and delicious food samplings. For more information, contact Debbie at 813.681.8686.

Also on Saturday, November 6, it’s Dox-A-Palooza, the annual fundraising event hosted by DARE, Dachshund Adoption, Rescue and Education. The event takes place at the Mango/Seffner Dog Park, 11717 Clay Pit Road in Seffner. There will be a silent and live auction, rummage sale, dog costume contest and plenty of raffle prizes. And of course, what would a Dachshund event be without the famous Wiener Races?

November 6 is the first Saturday of the month and that means it’s time to celebrate Pets on the Patio at Gaspar’s Grotto in Ybor City – one of the coolest pirate bars in the world. Check out their new Galley, updated menu (re-vamped with the knowing palate of Jeannie Pierola), and the renovated patio. The giant, remote-controlled red umbrellas are a fabulous touch. And check out the new wall mural being created by pet portrait artist Anna Hamilton for TampaPets.org. Your pet could be forever immortalized in the pirate ship painting. Just send in a picture of your pet, or bring one along Saturday evening. For sign up to the PupArt Mural, go to http://www.tampapets.org/events.php
Gaspar’s Grotto is located at 1905 East 7th Avenue in Ybor City. Call 813.248.5900 for new Pets on the Patio hours.

If your holiday plans include bringing a new dog or cat into your home, consider adopting. Another consideration: think about adopting before the rush of the holidays is upon us in an effort to calmly introduce your new pet into his or her environment. While the thought of presenting a new puppy wrapped in a shiny red ribbon is tempting, oftentimes the excitement during the immediate holidays is too much stimulation for a new pet. And for humans too, especially children. Fortunately, we have a couple of early adoption options for consideration.

On November 13 TampaPets.org, in conjunction with the Humane Society of Tampa Bay and Hillsborough County Animal Services, will be hosting its sixth Adoption Expo at the Florida State Fairgrounds. Through this unique partnership and with the help of the ASPCA, the event continues to remain free to all participating rescue groups and to the public. Another bonus for the Fall Adoption Expo – the parking is free. Visit http://www.tampapets.org/expo.php for more information. This is an all-round great experience for the entire family.

The Happy Paws Pet Expo takes place on Saturday and Sunday, November 13 and 14 at the Fort Lauderdale War Memorial Auditorium. This event has been in the works for almost a year and will be one of the best bets for a two-day event. Families are encouraged to bring their dogs as this is an interactive event, complete with competitions in agility, flyball and more. Entertainment from media personalities and some amazing performing animals as well. And of course, rescue groups will be on hand with their adoptables ready to take home.

Also on Saturday, November 13, Pug Rescue of Florida is gathering Pug lovers from across the state to the largest Pug Meet-up of all time. PugsGiving will be held at the Maitland Civic Center. And speaking of Pugs, one of Florida’s biggest Pug lovers, the incomparable Robert Plunket, will be emceeing Hot Dogs and Cool Cats at Michael’s on East in Sarasota. Mr. Plunket has scripted a murder mystery to outshine all others. It’s all in fun and all to benefit the Humane Society of Sarasota County (HSSC). For ticket information, call HSSC at 941.955.4131.

For details on these events and a complete calendar of Florida dog-friendly events, go to http://www.thenewbarker.com/Events/htm