A Place to Bark and Meow Blog by Bernie Berlin

Thursday, December 31, 2009
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! From: A Place To Bark
A happy New Year!!! Grant that I may bring no tear to any eye...
When this New Year in time shall end. Let it be said I've played the friend.
Have lived & loved & labored here & made of it a HAPPY Year! ~Edgar Guest

In the blink of an eye...
Another year passed.
WoW!!! And what a year it's been!!!
Never have I worked so hard & felt so behind...
But it's all about lessons, this life, this journey.
I've learned so much, this past year & even as old as I get, I'm always learning something new:)

First I want to say "Thank YOU!!!!" to all who visit & read this blog...
Your support, friendship & constant compassion helps me continue on & find strength daily.
Thank you seems so inadequate, but please know, I do appreciate you so very, very much!!!
As so far behind as I get, my disappearances from the blog & my e-mail, I'm learning to find balance & will one day master it:)

This year in a nutshell, has been our most AMAZING ever...
I'm still wondering how we did, what we've done.
The sleepless nite, the non stop round the clock, care, cleaning, etc..
All pays off & we have saved 611 dogs this year & 42 cats.
Here are some of our highlights:
We were able to assist the animals in need saved by The Humane Society of the United States this past year on 2 separate occasions. Here are a few before & afters:

Just a few of our HAPPY videos. The dogs from the confiscation above & their progress:)
Learning to trust again: A Tail wag first...
And we're UP!!! On the road back to trusting people

The other assist was a Horse rescue where 84 horses were saved in Tennessee.
At this confiscation several dogs that we took in and cared for have now been adopted!!!
Here is one of their before & after pics:

I've been at almost every confiscation done by HSUS in Tennessee over the past few years.
The people who have dedicated their lives and live most of it on the road, saving these helpless creatures, get my deepest respect. I'm blessed to know many of them & call them friend.
Until the day there are no more in need, together we work together, cry together & pray for a better future...
This is just a few of the many dedicated AMAZING people on the HSUS Emergency Services Team, led by Scotlund Haisley.

Next I want to introduce you to some AMAZING kids!!!
They have presented us with a $1000.00 donation this Holiday season.
Their organization Assist A Pet believes in our vision!!!
In 2010 we will be partnering with Audrey, Andrea & Jack to make
a difference via our social networks.
These driven kids are going to be our spokes kids for a new website we will be launching later in the year, dedicated to everyone coming together to make a difference, via our social networks. Focusing on being socially responsible, spreading awareness & believing in a common vision of saving Lives everyday & the end of needless killing of shelter pets!!!
"A Revolution For Life" begins at "A Place To Bark"!!! Stay Tuned it will be VERY exciting:)
Our younger generation will lead this revolution...

Another puppymill confiscation where 285 dogs were saved by the ASPCA in February of 2009. Another AMAZING group!!! I don't know what would happen to the world without this animal welfare organizations....
We took in 28 of these dogs who were all extremely emaciated & extremely pregnant.
All of which left healthy, loved & have ALL have been adopted!!!

A VERY special THANK YOU to PetSmart Charities!!!
Without their support we would have never been able to care for the medical needs of so many of these dogs.

This is one of the babies who is now an adult & happily living with artist Julie Bergmann & her family. Pom Pom is very loved & spoiled as all dogs should be:)
Another artist Sue Pelletier has sweet Eloise who also was born out of that horrible situation. Both live perfect lives & for that I am forever grateful!!! Thanks for adopting instead of buying:)

The key to our success is networking & working together. Sometimes we don't see eye to eye, but the bottom line is, we have to learn to agree to disagree and keep working towards the common cause & vision. That is to end the needless killing. The only way it will happen is by EVERYONE working together. So that is what we try to focus on everyday!

Here's a little video on our daily efforts in making a difference where we live, by working with the Sumner County Sheriff's Dept Animal Control.
They deliver dogs weekly to our rescue & help us save lives.

Our partnering shelter Anti Cruelty Society in Chicago is really who makes us successful.
They have the staff & facilities to place the hundreds of animals we save yearly.
By coming together, each doing our part, to get these animals healthy & well adjusted, it becomes a win/win for the animals, adopters & the humane society.
This is the wave of the future!!! The collaborative efforts SAVE lives!!!

The staff keeps me updated on my animals via my Facebook, Twitter & my social networks.
If one does not shelter well, it is returned to us, for private placement.
As you can see, I'm proud to call these people my friends!!!
How could we not be, after all, what feels better than saving life...
Yes, shelter policies and procedures are changing!!!
But we have to BELIEVE & be the CHANGE, if we expect to see it!!!

The extreme emotion & hard work it takes to run a rescue successfully & the huge numbers we have been taking has been taking it's toll on me... But the vision is almost complete.
The matching grant from the Zoline Foundation & your donations have brought us to a place we can continue to finish the shelter.
I'm not sure yet, if we've met the match, but whatever the case, we are grateful for whatever we have collected:) In the next few months, we will have walls, plumbing, electric, heating & air!!! All that will left to finish will be the veterinary equipment, washer/dryer, dishwasher, stainless steel sinks, kennels & veterinary cages. So much to do in the next few months, but we are almost there!!! WooHoo!!!:)
It's been a tough year for all & financially everyone has been stretched, but you've come together for us and it's been a MIRACLE to say the least. Again: "THANK YOU ALL!!!"

A final note is truly CHERISH each and every moment you have with your pets!
I lost my BIG guy Zeus this year....
While the void in my heart will never heal, his memory lives on in each and every animal that I come in contact with.
Till we meet again at the The Rainbow Bridge. I will miss you're snoring & smelly feet everyday:)

These faces here, each & everyone you see... You've helped me save by donating!!!
HERE'S TO A GREAT "2010"!!!

P.S. If I have forgotten something or someone, please forgive me, I'm writing this on the run, from a hotel on the road between my transport & home:)

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