Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Open House day at BAD RAP class - this Sunday

Ladies and gentlemen,

I have an exciting announcement about a once-in-a-lifetime event (actually that just means this is the first time it's happened, but hopefully it can become a regular thing)

Pit bulls have been in the news lately for both good and bad reasons, and our friends over at BAD RAP have been dealing with a big uptick in public interest about the dogs. They have worked with BACS to turn this week's regular pit ed class (Sunday, August 1, from 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM) into more of a show and tell session for the interested public.

We'll still have the normal class, but there will be some added attractions. BAD RAP volunteers will be on hand to answer any questions about adopting or volunteering. They'll also bring their famous Barn Puppies for some eye candy. We're hoping to draw a good crowd to watch some of our star BACS pitties strut their stuff. I'm also trying to convince Tim and Donna to serve mimosas and set up a waffle/omelet station, we'll see if that idea goes anywhere.

If you'd like to ask any questions about the pit ed program, adoption in general, or if you'd just like to see the BACS dogs in action, please do stop by. And pass the word on. My parents are visiting from Ohio and they will be there, so surely you can drag your sorry self to Berkeley. The class/open house is in the big parking lot next to the northern boundary of Aquatic Park, just a few hundred feet from the shelter. Look for the blimp and the ESPN crew.

Feel free to cheer for your favorite BACS pittie as he/she completes the drills. Whoever can start a decent version of The Wave will have the inside track on being August's Volunteer of the Month!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

What's Going on with VPA??

Many of us check the status of our favorite BACS dogs by logging onto However, there has been a change in the set-up of the website, so that you can no longer click onto a particular shelter and find the kennel inventory of cats and dogs. Instead, you enter a bunch of different parameters and dogs from all over the Bay Area, including those from obscure rescue groups. Where are the Berkeley dogs??

Thanks to Rob, shelter photographer, who saved this link, you can go right to our dogs and cats :

In the meantime, if you want to voice your opinion about the changes, you can contact the webmaster, Shani at

Thursday, July 22, 2010

July's Volunteer of the Month


You should probably know a little bit more about Barbara. She is a definite regular at the shelter, so you might run into her no matter what day you're there. Ask her about her grandchildren, doesn't every grandparent love to talk about their grandkids? Barbara, you don't look old enough to be a grandma!

What do you do when you're not at the shelter?

I am a retired Jazzercise Instructor and still attend classes regularly. I spend lots of time with my two young grandsons and I'm also an avid quilter.

Why did you initially decide to volunteer at BACS?

My husband John (also a volunteer) and I moved back to the Bay Area after living in the San Juan Islands for thirteen years. We had THE most wonderful irrepressible Cocker Spaniel who lost his battle with cancer shortly before we moved. Both of us were devastated but not quite ready for another dog. I met another BACS volunteer at my Jazzercise class who was so enthusiastic about the shelter that I immediately signed up for the orientation.

What are your favorite things about volunteering?

I love being able to come to the shelter any day, any time and know that I am making a difference in the lives of our precious dogs. Sometimes just sitting in a kennel with a frightened dog is all that's necessary. Some of the dogs like a slow stroll in the park, some like a wild race around the lake, some just want to nap on your lap. I love getting to know the distinct personalities of each of them and my mission is to brighten their day in any way possible.

Who are your favorite dogs, past and present?

Roscoe is my current favorite....he's the gorgeous one in the photo. He is the sweetest, most loving, adorable guy! My very first love was Shona, the white German Shepard. Then there was Radio, the black pit bull. Oh, and remember Romy, the black Chow? She was completely matted and scared but after hours and hours of daily combing she became our shelter Supermodel. Of course, Angel was the dog who touched my heart the most.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

La Bella ♥

A little less than a week ago I took Bella (kennel A13) out for a short walk. I had not taken her out before, so I didn't know what to expect on our walk. It turns out that walking on a leash isn't much of a problem for her, but getting the leash ON her is. When I got into her kennel, she was really jumpy and excited - a stark contrast to the demure dog I saw when I was standing outside her kennel a few moments prior. I was tempted to give up on leashing her, but I'm glad I didn't. Once out of her kennel, Bella really is a joy to walk. She's respectful and mindful of her walker and will sit when asked. I was pretty sure I would be taking her out again...and soon.

AND I DID! Yesterday, Bella and I went out on a short adventure to the windy marina area on the other side of the overpass (the one that goes over the freeway with the cool bronze statues). We spent about thirty minutes wandering around the huge mounds of dirt and sniffing the dried-up grasses/weeds (that was mostly her). Then, we made our way to the play area under the OTHER overpass; she loved it there! We played fetch and her personal favorite: "hog the tennis balls". After about half an hour of this, I figured it was time that we return to the shelter. All in all, the day was a success, even though I had to sacrifice a sock (she pulled on it too hard while I was trying to leash her up). The following are some photos I took during our play session. Please excuse the terrible quality - these were taken on my cell. Oh, and also excuse the bare leg in the first photo...I was wearing shorts.

"HEY! YOU! Throw this for me!"

"Hmmmm... Which one do I want to play with now..?"

"I guess this one will do..."



Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Mercedes has been adopted!

I know everyone has started to flock over to BACS's exciting new Facebook page, but surely we still have some readers here?

Another of our old hands has found a home. Everyone's favorite low-rider - Mercedes! She didn't generate a lot of interest from adopters in six months at the shelter, but it only takes one family. Mercedes is not going far, she'll be setting up shop in Richmond.

Good luck Mercedes! Thanks to all the volunteers who helped out with her, and especially DeAnna who spent so time with Mercedes - plenty of walks, lots of lounging around in Aquatic Park, and weekly BAD RAP classes. Looks like DeAnna is going to be a single girl on the prowl again, maybe looking to hook up with another lucky shelter resident...

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Hiro and Mo (aka Drake and Santho)

Then . . .

Now . . .

From Jose, Hiro and Mo's adopter:

"Hiro's the black and tan dog who I adopted first. Then Mo the pit-lab mix light tan dog-- the second dog who I adopted from BACS. Fatboy's also on the pic which is my other dog. They get along so well. I'm glad I got these two dogs from the shelter and gave them a forever-home. They sleep on the bed with us like our own kids. They love to watch TV, going to the park, going to Petfood Express (lol), they love those rope toys, especially Mo. Most toys never last though(lol). Hiro is a clinger, follows me everywhere, even to the bathroom. I think Mo's shelter name was Santho, I forget Hiro's shelter name thogh [Drake]. Enjoy the pics. Will give you more updates.

I love these dogs. They never fail to put a smile on my face everyday. Hiro loves belly rubs. Mo is such a big puppy-- he plays 90% of the time and the other 10% he devotes to sleeping and eating. I wish I could save more dogs. . . it's really sad to hear about alot of dogs in the shelter who don't get the chance that Hiro and Mo got. But you guys [staff] and the volunteers are just angels and what you do there at the shelter the time and effort you put into caring for these dogs is just amazing. Thanks for all of your hard work."

Back to you, Jose for giving these lucky dogs a more-than-a-dog-coud-ask for forever-home. : )

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

BACS on Facebook

We have our own FB page. Become a fan, invite your friends to become fans, make a comment, or just have a look at our dogs and cats.
Thanks to Maureen and Rob for putting this together!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Goodnight, Sweet Angel

We thought of ourselves as Angel's Auntie Alexandra and Auntie Barbara. I wish I could have better protected and nurtured you, Angel.And from Barbara: 'Rest in peace Sweet Angel. Life was never easy for you. For those of us who loved you it was an honor to give you the love and comfort you deserved during your short stay with us. You you will always live in our hearts.' I, too, felt honored: Thank you, Angel, for allowing me to sit in your kennel, though you were initially terrified of this big intruder in your fragile space. Thank you for honoring me with your approaches and for letting me finally nuzzle your ears.To echo what Barbara has said, it was an honor to receive your trust and love. [Angel and Hendrix left us on the same day; you can find a tribute to Hendrix on Pam's Facebook page.]