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Misty Pines Gazette

August 2015
Volume XI: Issue 8

Table of Contents

Say goodbye to Summer

Upcoming Events for:




















CGC/TDI/Service Dog/Public Access Test Prep





Puppy Test Out

Class at North Park

Starter Orientation

CGC/TDI/Service Dog/Public Access Test Prep


Puppy Orientation


All Levels Field Trip

Starter Test Out

Dock Diving

Dock Diving Fun Trial


Scent Work Level 1 - Week #1


Kids Camp

This was the second year that Misty Pines held two separate Kid's Camps and like last year, both weeks were exciting and educational! Safety is concern #1 but the fun and learning are right behind vying for the second spot. The weather this year has been very wet, trying to dodge rain drops to do anything outside, but we were fortunate that the rain held off every day till Camp was over, giving us a few hours of nice weather each morning to enjoy our park with the kids.

Two full weeks of kids and their dogs working together, training together and playing together was a real treat. The first days always begin with registration and spending some time in the park with the kids and their puppies. After everyone was signed in the kids and pups headed down stairs for their first agility and obedience sessions. The first time is challenging as the kids and dogs are adjusting to the routine but everything quickly falls into place as our staff organizes the lines. Throughout the remainder of the day the kids and their dogs take walks on our nature trails, all the while continuing to train and walk nicely on a leash. More agility and obedience sessions are nestled between snacks, educational movies, walks and games. At the end of the day the kids pick up a fun new dog training book, folders that have handouts, coloring books and book marks, and Misty Pines t-shirts.

Day Two is the first time the kids visit the pond. The pond time is always a huge hit with the kids and dogs. Some dogs know how to swim, some even know how to jump off the dock already, and they all dive right in. Some dogs, however, need a little help to get going so our staff helps the kids teach their dogs to swim so they can join in the fun too. Each year we try to get a picture of one of the kids diving off the dock with their dog and the pictures this year are fantastic. Be sure to visit our Facebook page to check them out.

Tuesday is also picture day! Each year we take a group photo so that we can look back at all of the kids' smiling faces and remember how much fun we had.

Tuesday and Wednesday also have group classes that take place while Kid's Camp is going on and we have the kids participate in class with adults. The result is a very fun class that has different distractions than most dogs are used to which will help them be "bomb proof" later in life. After three days of learning, playing and having fun we, say goodbye to the kids and hope to see them in group classes with their parents.

We had such a fun time this year we truly can't wait to do it again next year. Next year's dates are already added to our online store and will be added to added to our online registration page in early January 2016. We have registration forms available in our office as of right now so be sure to sign up so your kids don't miss their opportunity to participate in next year's Misty Pines Kid's Dog Training Camp!

To see all the pictures from Kids Camp, visit our Facebook page.

Kids For A Cause BBQ

For the past few years we have hosted BBQs for Kids For A Cause. This organization of kids is ran by Billy Loya and puts on various events that benefit local charities. This year the event benefited Animal Friends' Spay and Neuter program. Billy and his troop cook up delicious hotdogs and hamburgers while guests peruse the baskets available for auction and participate in our training classes. The event drew a nice audience and everyone enjoyed the food and festivities.

Looking forward to next year, Billy!

Maniac Magazine: Mutts N' Mingle

Maniac Magazine is a local fashion magazine and has a yearly issue with a focus on dogs. Maniac has launch parties for each of their issues and last year they had their Dog Issue launch party at Misty Pines and benefited Animal Friends. We really enjoyed the event last year and partnered with them again this year for another event to benefit Animal Friends.

The party was held on Friday, July 17th from 6 - 9 and featured drinks, catered chicken, a large amount of raffle items and a host of Vendors. The evening befitted Animal Friends, whom showed up with a nice display table and plenty of free swag.

All of the vendors who came out were excellent and mingled with the guests. There were two Mini Coopers provided by MINI of Pittsburgh that all the pups were welcome to take pictures in. DJ Loyal was on hand to keep the mood light and the music pumping. The evening was relaxing, but by no means boring. The weather was warm and many of the 4 legged attendees played in the park.

We had a nice turn out for the event and Maniac was able to give a nice donation for Animal Friends. Thank you to all of those that donated, helped and supported this event and Animal Friends. Pictures and videos on our Facebook page. For even more pictures, check out Maniac Magazine's Facebook page.

Swimming and Dock Diving

Summer is almost gone, but you've still got time to visit the Misty Pines Dog Park and take a swim in the pond or participate in our Swimming Classes or Dock Diving events. For $6 you'll get full use of the park grounds for 2 hours and that includes full access to the pond.

Take a look below for some of the schedules or you can head over to our Specialty Classes page for a full description and list of dates for each class. If you need a bit of summer right now you can nose around our Facebook page for pictures of dogs having fun in the pond.

Saturdays, August 1st and 15th

2:30 - 3:30 PM
Cost - $15

Does your dog need a swimming lesson? Is your dog a good swimmer but wants to have friends to swim with? We offer a Summer Swimming Class! This helpful class will be sure to get your dog in the water at our dog pond in no time. Be sure to bring a water toy, enticing dog treats, a long leash, your bathing suit or old clothes and water shoes. You Will Get Wet! Please pre-register.

Sunday, August 23rd, 2014

There will be 2 rounds of jumps. One will be at 10 o'clock, and one at 12 o'clock. Each dog entered will get 2 jumps off the dock. The better of the two jumps will determine the dog’s division and place in that division. At 2 o'clock we will take the top 6 dogs of each division and have them jump for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place in their division. The top three places will receive a ribbon and prizes.

Novice Division: 1 inch to 9 feet 11 inches.
Junior Division: 10 feet to 14 feet 11 inches.
Senior Division: 15 feet to 19 feet 11 inches.
Master Division: 20 feet to 22 feet 11 inches.
Elite Division: 23 feet to 24 feet 11 inches.
Super Elite Division: 25 feet and above.

Three Rivers Dockdog Club members will be present to help organize this competition. A class with the Three Rivers Dockdog members will take place at 8:00 AM, so show up early and they’ll not only help you work on your jumps, but also run you through the process for the competition.

Misty Pines’ facility will be open and we will have refreshments that can be purchased, so come early or stay late and have some fun in the park or take a nice relaxing walk through the trails. Don’t forget to stop by the grill and grab a hotdog, drink and other concessions to get you through the day. If your dogs need a bath the grooming tubs and soap will be available for you to wash your dog at $10 per bath.

No parking will be permitted along the driveway or on the grass. All parking will be in the parking lots at the top of the driveway. Each handler will need to sign in, pay and obtain a wrist band at the main office before proceeding to the dock.

Participants and spectators are asked to bring lawn chairs to sit along the hillside, which will provide a spectacular view of the event.

Each round of jumps, at 10:00 and 12:00, will have a 50 dog maximum, so be sure to get your spot soon. Participants will be organized into groups of 10 and each group will be assigned a jump time. Upon arriving at Misty Pines, participants will receive a flyer with each groups jump time, instructions for registration and rules for the event and park.

Each handler/dog team needs to be here 1 hour before their dock dive slot, which would be 9:00a or 11:00p.

$15 per entry.

Click here for Official Rules.

Please register for the August 23rd Fun Trial online by clicking here.

Product Spotlight

Heggies: The newest Super dog toy on the block.

August Sales

Flee Flea!

20% Off this month at Misty Pines!

Though we're nearing the end of summer we certainly are not nearing the end of flea season. You'll find these pesky fellows hanging around till November depending on the weather. See our article below for more information on these blood sucking critters and then stop by Misty Pines to pick up some much needed protection. Remember; Prevention is better than Cure.

20% off all flea products

Plum Perfect

This month visit the Misty Pines Grooming Salon and get $5 off Perfect Plumb Spa Packages or add Perfect Plumb shampoo to a Quick Bath for just $4!

$5 off Plum Perfect spa package


CGC/TDI/Service Dog/Public Access Prep Class

Saturday, August 1st @ 8:00 AM

Swimming Class

Saturday, August 1st @ 2:30 PM


Friday, August 7th - Tests begin @ 5:30 PM


Saturday, August 8th @ 8:00 AM


Saturday, August 8th @ 2:30 PM

Puppy Test Out

Saturday, August 8th @ 4:45 PM

Class at North Park

Tuesday, August 11th @ 6:30 - 7:30 PM

CGC/TDI/Service Dog/Public Access Prep Class

Saturday, August 15th @ 8:00 AM

Swimming Class

Saturday, August 15th @ 2:30 PM


Saturday, August 22nd @ 8:00 AM

All Levels Field Trip

Saturday, August 22nd @ 2:30 PM

Starter Test Out

Saturday, August 22nd @ 4:45 PM

Dock Diving Class

Sunday, August 23rd @ 8:00 - 9:30 AM

Dock Diving Fun Trial

Sunday, August 23rd - All day event

Nuisance Behaviors

Saturday, August 29th @ 8:00 AM

Scent Work Level 1

Saturdays, August 29th, September 5th & 12th @ 2:30 PM


Recall & Walking Nicely On A Leash

Saturday, September 5th @ 8:00 AM

Scent Work Level 1

Saturdays, September 5th & 12th @ 2:30 PM

Labor Day

Open 9 - 11

Class at North Park

Tuesday, September 8th @ 6:30 - 7:30 PM


Saturday, September 12th @ 8:00 AM

Puppy Test Out

Saturday, September 12th @ 4:45 PM

CGC/TDI/Service Dog/Public Access Prep Class

Saturday, September 19th @ 8:00 AM

Customer Appreciation Day

Saturday, September 19th - An All Day Event


Saturday, September 26th @ 8:00 AM

Nuisance Behaviors

Saturday, September 26th @ 2:30 PM

Starter Test Out

Saturday, September 26th @ 4:45 PM

Back To Schedule

It’s that time again: time to go back to school. Parents everywhere are rejoicing while kids everywhere are groaning. But really: why the difference in emotions? Why do parents long for this time of year? Are parents really that anxious to get rid of their offspring for a few hours a day? Let’s delve into this topic for a moment.

All joking aside the real reason is because we are now back on a schedule and though a lot of us adults don’t want to admit it, we love our schedules and routines. Wake up at 5:30. Take a shower. Get dressed. Make coffee. Wake the kids. Eat breakfast. Feed the dogs. Pack lunches. Adios! See you at 3:00. Work. Home at 5:30. Eat dinner. Homework and entertainment. Kids in bed at 9:00. Wash. Rinse. Repeat. What’s not to love about that? You can plan your life!

When you first have kids, there are only pseudo schedules. Bedtime is flexible because there is really no reason to need to be up early. Lunch time varies on your morning activities and dinner can happen whenever because…why not? School forces a child’s schedule to be upheld much the same way that work does for adults.

Why are we talking about adults and kids when this is about dogs?

Now that the rest of the family is on a schedule our pets should be on one too. Dogs are pack animals that thrive on routines, schedules and work. If they lack structure they are more likely to act out and have bad manners. Our schedules are pretty cut and dry and are largely put in place for us without the need to do much thinking about it. Our places of employment determine our hours of work during a day and our commute determines when we get home at night and when we need to leave in the morning. The school’s hours dictate when our children must arrive at school and when they leave and their bus schedule says when to be ready to leave and when they’ll arrive at home. Perhaps it would help to give our dog’s lives some of the same structure by providing a daily schedule for them. While they do not have the demands on their time that we do they still crave structure but lack the means or ability to give it to themselves, so it is up to us to lend them a hand, or paw.

Begin by making their meals a part of your morning routine: pour your bowl of Cap N’ Crunch…I mean…Total, and then give them their meals for the morning. Before leaving for the day give them a raw bone in their crate or if they have free run of the house, perhaps a stuffed Kong, Bob-A-Lot or some other Prolonged Release Interactive Food Dispensing Device. If you think to yourself that you would like to get your dogs to daycare try to make it a habit of coming on the same day. Many of our clients have specific days that they come for daycare and have made that part of their dog’s lifestyle and routine. Believe it or not after a while they’ll start to know which day it is and wait by their door to come to play with their friends.

Daycare is a great option for providing structure, exercise and social interaction for our dogs. While visiting daycare at Misty Pines dogs are able to participate in a variety of activities that include obedience training, agility work, nature walks, afternoon snacks and more. Though the benefits of daycare can largely speak for themselves there cannot be enough said about the importance of giving your dog extra activities to break up their day and help keep them mentally sharp. Even a 15 minute training session can go a long way towards shoring up their manners and giving them some much needed mental stimulation. After all, it can't all be playtime.

Much like our children we love to see our dogs playing and having a good time but there comes a time when they need to take a break from the play and refocus. At Misty Pines we give each dog a break from playtime while they are here for daycare but that break is really not a substitute for a good, well suited activity. If your dog loves to fetch and play ball, then a session of play ball time would be the best option for your dog. Or maybe your dog enjoys running on a treadmill or agility or sniffing through the woods; no matter what your dog enjoys we have a program that they’ll love.

Beyond just daycare, think of incorporating your dog’s needs into your families evening routine as well. Get the family together for a few minutes of fun obedience work, such as fetching objects and returning them or a game of hide and seek to work on recall. Evening walks can be used for more than just letting Scruffy check his "pee-mail," you can incorporate behaviors that you have learned in your obedience classes such as; easy, heel, this way, pull or even sniff. Challenge your dog's minds by making them heel through portions of the walk and make random stops to make them sit. Frequent direction changes with a "this way" cue will keep them alert and keep their minds sharp. If you would like to give them a work-out, have them "pull" you up a long or steep hill. There are ways to include training into everything you do with your dog, just be creative.

Most of our evenings end with personal grooming before bed: brushing hair, brushing teeth, showers, cutting nails and so on. Don’t forget that your dog needs groomed as well. Take 10 minutes to brush out your dog’s coat each evening as a calming down time before bed. Use this time to examine ears, nails, feet and all your dog’s parts to make sure they’re healthy and staying clean. Dogs often need help keeping up with their ears, so this is a great time to clean their ears as well. A simple cotton ball with some wintergreen alcohol will remove the waxy build-up and leave their ears smelling nice and fresh. If you’re comfortable and have had some practice you could even cut their nails. If you’re not up to that particular task feel free to bring your pup to Misty Pines and we’ll get those nails trimmed in no time. As a matter of fact, Misty Pines can handle all your grooming needs but even our professional groomers can’t make up for the daily brushing and care of your dog’s skin and coat.

    Let’s recap how to include your dogs into our daily lives and give them a schedule to provide a stable routine:
  1. Include your dog’s feeding into your morning routine.
  2. Provide mentally and physically stimulating activities such as Interactive toys or bringing the dog to daycare.
  3. Feed the dog during or around your dinner time.
  4. Incorporate your dogs into your evening family time with fun obedience games.
  5. Include training into your walks to provide mental stimulation and keep your leash handling skills sharp.
  6. Provide for your dog’s grooming needs with evening brush outs and examinations.

If you have any questions regarding how to help your dog have a schedule or how to incorporate your dog into your lifestyle please e-mail or call Misty Pines and our professional staff will be happy to give you suggestions. While speaking with our staff you may also schedule daycare or grooming visits.

The Dirt on Fleas

Ctenocephalides felis (the “cat flea”) is the predominant flea species associated with dogs and cats and one of the most widespread species on earth. Adults are about 3 mm long and laterally compressed (very thin), making them hard to see.

Host Acquisition

    Outdoor flea infestations are common
  • Crawl spaces, under porches, in community areas where animals frequent
  • Flea eggs can be deposited in the environment by infested opossums, raccoons, and stray dogs
    Fleas can also hitch a ride inside on pet owners’ clothing and on other untreated pets
  • Pets can pick up fleas from untreated pets at public locations such as parks or pet friendly stores
  • Even “truly indoor” pets can develop flea infestations
Flea dirt

Biology and Feeding

A single flea can bite a host up to 400 times per day!

A female flea can consume up to 15 times her weight in blood daily!

Blood meals are passed as fecal material referred to as “flea dirt”

Easily identified if it turns bright red when wiped with a wet paper towel

Presence on a host is evidence of a flea infestation

Life Cycle

flea life cycle

Life Stages

flea life stages vs infestation stages effect of flea bite

Flea Allergy Dermatitis

Flea feeding exposes the dog or cat to salivary proteins from the flea that may cause inflammation (white arrow) and, consequently, allergic hypersensitivity reactions.

Flea saliva contains over 15 different allergens, each individually capable of causing an allergic reaction in a sensitive dog or cat.

The most common skin condition seen by veterinarians is Flea Allergy Dermatitis (FAD); also known as Flea Bite Hypersensitivity

flea dermatitis on dog


Infected fleas may carry immature stages of a species of tapeworm (Dipylidium caninum)

Infection can occur if a dog or cat ingests the infected flea

tapeworm vectors

Prevention and Control

An adult female flea lays 25 to 50 eggs per day and up to 2,000 eggs in her lifetime

On average fleas live 2 to 3 months but can live much longer in certain conditions

Entire life cycle can be completed in 12 to 14 days

    Attributes of flea control products to consider:
  • Convenience
  • Speed of kill
  • Whether multiple stages of the flea life cycle are targeted
  • Duration of efficacy

Visit our retail store this month for 20% off of any flea product, including; Seresto collars, Adams Flea & Tick Spray and more

Therapy Dog Visits

Locations To Visit

Once your dog has passed their Therapy Dog International certification, it's time for the fun to begin. Read below for a list of places that are always looking for registered therapy dogs to brighten the day of the patients and residents:

Cranberry Township Library
Dog reading proram. Looking for 3-4 dogs, one Thursday per month from 6:30 – 7:30 pm
Contact: Annemarie Lamperski

Baden Memorial Library
Dog reading program. Need volunteer for 2 Thursdays per month from 5:00pm - 6:30pm
and 1 Saturday per month for 1 1/2 hours.
Contact: Kathleen Wagner

Gateway Hospice
Contact: Sr. Linda Larkman OSB, Volunteer Coordinator 412-737-0969

West Haven Manor
Contact: Karen Zimmerman, Coordinator of Volunteer Services 724-727-3451

North Hills Health and Rehabilitation Center
Contact: Teri A. Slimick 724-935-3781

McGuire Memorial
Contact: Susan Matlock 724-843-3400

Excela Health Home Care and Hospice (Westmoreland County)
Contact: Joan Roth, Volunteer Coordinator

Family Hospice Palliative Care
Contact: Pam Tomczak 412-572-8803

Western Pa. Humane Society coordinates visits to multiple locations in the community with volunteers who have Certified Therapy Dogs.
Contact: Joy Kealey

Odyssey Health Care
Cliff Mine Rd., Pittsburgh
Contact: Barbara Coulter 1-800-861-8584

Condordia of Franklin Park
Contact: Carol Kosela 724-935-1075 ext. 103

VA Hospitals in Pittsburgh
Activities Director: 412-688-6000 ext. 3682

Country Meadows (South Hills)
Activities Director: 412-257-4566

Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh
Volunteer Coordinator: 412-690-6508

Animal Friends also coordinates a Pet Assisted Therapy program that visits multiple locations. To join their therapy group contact:

Ann Cadman: (412) 847-7031

Allegheny General Hospital
Jennifer Kopar: 412-359-3067

Tail Waggin Tutors at Baden Library
Laura Bain: 724-869-3960

Heartland Hospice
Barb Kralik, Volunteer Coordinator: 412-919-5617

Caring Hospice Services
Brittany Bailey, Volunteer Coordinator: 412-563-3300

Concordia of Wexford
Michelle Moon: 724-935-1266

Passavant Memorial Homes and Subsidiaries
Colleen Perry, Social Services Coordinator: 412-820-1015 ext. 521

Services & Teams

If you would like to have Therapy Dogs visit your facility, please contact one of the following Therapy Dog Teams or contact Misty Pines to have your facility listed in the above section so that our teams may contact you. Click the link below for teams that are interested in visiting those in need of therapeutic visits from their furry friends:

Pets With Heart, Pet Therapy
Sister Sharon Costello: 724-869-6545

"The golden gift is this: Intimately connected with his own emotions, the dog cannot lie. What he feels, he expresses. What he shows in his body posture is true, without guile, completely and utterly honest. Distanced from our own feelings, bound by our fears, we treasure and are amazed by this quality of complete truth in our dogs."

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