Archive for August, 2015



Today I had the pleasure of visiting Pat and her team at the West LA Shelter – Los Angeles Animal Services and took some quick shots. With up to 200 animals in care at any one time, there are many dogs, cats, rabbits and even a chicken looking for their forever homes. Spending some time with a few of the dogs, I fell in love with Coco, the Staffordshire Terrier Mix. She’s been in the shelter for over a year which is so baffling as she has lovely manners and is a well behaved, gorgeous pooch. Check out her two pics in the gallery – she’s so smiley!

The set up at West LA was very well organised, providing everything the animals need, and creating a bright, welcoming atmosphere. The animals reacted and acted the same as rescue animals I’ve met all over the world: The dogs came in all shapes and sizes and were curious and playful, giving a tail wag in exchange for my attention. One dog barked at the back of my head until I turned around and acknowledged him. It was a lesson for me to not be so remiss next time I walked past. smile emoticon The cats were cheeky, sweet and talkative, giving me the stink eye if I accidentally woke them up. All were beautiful creatures who deserve lots of love.

The shelter staff and volunteers were also just like other amazing ‘animal people’ I’ve met: They were dedicated, kind and genuinely want the best for the animals in their shelter.

To me, animal rescue and animal welfare are global issues, not bounded by borders or countries. If we can reach out and help in any way, no matter where we are, then we should … and after seeing the inspiring work at West LA Shelter, Houndstooth Studio will be sponsoring a kennel there for 12 months.

Along with the Kennel Sponsorship Program, LA Animal Services also have three other donation programs: the Animal Welfare Trust Fund (donations help enhance the quality of life for shelter animals by funding animal supplies, medical equipment and improvements), the The Spay/Neuter Trust Fund (donations help provide low/no cost spay/neutering services for pets in low-income households and fund mobile spay/neuter clinics) and The Special Treatment And Recovery (Star) program (donations go towards medical treatment to severely injured, abused, and neglected rescue animals.) If you would like to help the West LA animals, here are two donation links:

Or if you are based in LA and are unable to make a financial contribution, there are other ways you can help. The shelter is always in need of blankets, newspapers AND all important volunteers. Learn more at

Heartfelt thanks to everyone from West LA Shelter who made me so welcome today, and to Yukari from Flat Bonnie for being a 1st class assistant. If you get a minute please stop by the West LA FB page, give them a LIKE, and tell them we sent you.

Hugs from LA,

LA Animal Services




Join us at the VIP Reception for the Day of the Dog Exhibition at the The Perfect Exposure Gallery on National Dog Day (Wednesday 26th August 6pm – 9pm).

“On global National Day of the Dog we celebrate Man’s Best Friend in all his glory with a group photo exhibition of the highest calibre. From the loving domestic sidekick, to happy bush dogs; from working dogs, to the fearless animals rescuing victims of tragedy. The Dog is often revered by humans and we can learn so much from these faithful, loving and loyal animals. The best dog photographers from across the globe are stepping forward to benefit LA Animal Services through their work.”

Invitation images by Carli Davidson Pet Photography (‘Shake’) and Seth Casteel (‘Underwater Dogs’).

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Meet Jessie the greyhound.

She is ten years old and during her short life she raced for 4 years. When she wasn’t fast enough anymore she was used for breeding, and had 23 puppies over 4 litters. Her final litter was in last year, when she was 9 years of age.

Her life now? She is in foster care with GreyhoundAngels of Western Australia and gets to sleep on the bed, eat the best food, have limitless cuddles, go for joyful strolls, get showered with love every single day and be free of her old world. How it should be. Always. xx




7 year old white fluffy, Mr Scruffy

“I’d be so grateful if all the pet lovers out there would take a sec and just send a positive wish Scruffy’s way.”

Mr Scruffy was recently diagnosed with cancer and is about to undertake chemotherapy and have two rounds of surgery. We want to send him lots of love and hugs, and some special wishes for his devoted mum Robyn, who has her own heavy health load to bear in life, yet she always puts her beloved furries first.

Robyn says “Scruffy was on death row in a dog pound when he was saved at the last minute by an animal welfare organisation. He had a “little old man” look to him, though still just a young pup, so they named him Abraham. It didn’t fit him though, and I spent several days canvassing names with friends. He came very close to being named “Jimmy Choo” (Jimmy Chew Shoes!), but in the end I decided to go with the obvious. He is a VERY scruffy dog!

Scruffy is such a charmer. He just loves everybody! He adores meeting new people and other dogs, and it’s nothing for me to be pursuing him at the off-leash park, to find he’s barreled up to a perfect stranger and flung himself into their lap.

He’s the most cheerful, friendly, happy little dog I’ve ever met. And everyone who sees him immediately does the “Aaaaww” face, which always makes me laugh as it’s so predictable – he’s just so darned cute! That funny little brushy tail never stops wagging.

Scruffy’s a dear, devoted little thing. He’s by my side constantly. He sleeps in a little basket beside my bed at night, and listening to him snore is kind of comforting, believe it or not. When I’m sitting down, he’s right there, resting his little chin on my foot in true, text book “faithful companion” style. It’s a constant battle not to trip over him, tread on him, or squish him. He wants to be as close as possible. Unless I want to brush him. Then all bets are off.

Scruffy’s hobbies include: making rude remarks through the fence to the dog next door, watching at the window with Toby the cat to see if ‘That Elusive Mouse’ emerges from the garage, picking cherry tomatoes and bok choy out of the veggie garden, stealing boxes of tissues and pulling all the tissues out, and vying with 15 year old Stormy for the position of Alpha Dog (Scruffy’s never going to win that one, but he gets an E for Effort).

He’s also fond of singing, especially when he hears a fire siren or the phone ringing. It usually winds up with his canine siblings joining in for a rowsing sing-along – Scruffy as baritone, Benjamin as tenor, and Daisy taking the soprano part. The “Howlellujah Chorus” goes down a treat with the neighbours, as I’m sure you can appreciate.

Now aged seven, my Scruffy dog is facing two big surgeries and several rounds of chemo to give him a fighting chance at a few more quality years of the life he enjoys so much. I’d be so grateful if all the pet lovers out there would take a sec and just send a positive wish Scruffy’s way. I love him with all my heart.”

Mr Scruffy



21 month old Weimaranar, Lexie

Chris says “Lexie came from a registered breeder in Victoria, and we selected her before she was even born. At 9 weeks of age she arrived in WA, having been flown across with a littermate. We attended quite a few puppy classes and are continuing to attend training. Lexie can be very good, but is also very easily distracted which poses challenges for us in training.

Lexie has a lovely friendly nature but can be boisterous – she likes to jump up on people and loves attention. She is very active and likes to be doing something when she is out and about. She does not like to sit quietly while people talk or while I am listening to instruction at training and often gets vocal.

Lexie is very alert and inquisitive. She loves to spend time sitting on the bed looking out the windows at the goings on in the neighbourhood. She has had a Tweetiepie pillow pet since a baby puppy which she still sleeps with and gets out daily, wraps her legs around the head and sucks on. She is also competing very successfully at Tracking – her ability to follow the track a person has left and find them is amazing.”




3 year old Rottweiler, Brian

Marianne says “We had been looking for a few weeks on rescue pages for a new family member when we cane across Brian’s face on the Dogs’ Refuge Home of WA website. We knew straight away he was the one. Just a baby puppy, he had been found on a building site with a badly broken leg. In spite of his painful injury, Brian was as cheerful and friendly as could be.

The vet who initially worked with him named him Brian after the Monty Python movie “The Life of Brian”. He was approximately 12 weeks old when we adopted him.

Three years on and he is still the most joyful dog ever. He loves people, dogs and life and brings joy to everyone he meets.

Although Brian now weighs 52 kilo he still thinks he is a puppy and likes nothing more than sitting on our lap at night.”


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4+ year old German Shepherd x Corgi, Jack

A special boy who ‘chose’ his human. And what a great choice it was. Jack was recently diagnosed with a mass on his spleen and cancer on his liver. He is battling his illness with dignity and keeping his happy face on. We send him lots of get well wishes and love (and some for his caring Mum Pia too!).

Pia says “I met my dog Jack on the street in August, 2001 in Kaohsiung, Taiwan. I had moved to Taiwan to teach English for a year and had only been in the country for about two weeks when I met him. I had been out for dinner and had got home late. I was outside talking, when I felt something touch my leg. I looked down and there he was. I said hello and patted him for a while and then went inside. Little did I know, he would soon become my best friend!

I next saw him a couple of days later, out the front of my apartment complex. As I was patting him, a guard from my complex appeared and the dog took off, terrified. It soon became apparent, he’d had a hard life, had been beaten and was living on the streets.

Jack or Xiao Huang (his Chinese name) began appearing more frequently. One day, after I had said goodbye to him, I got in the lift and went up to the 2nd floor, to go to my apartment. As I was going down the corridor to my apartment, I heard a noise and turned around to find Jack coming up the corridor behind me. He had followed the sound of my voice and walked up two flights of stairs and decided to camp outside my door. Of course, I caved and let him in.

Slowly but surely, over time, he began staying longer and longer, until he became a permanent fixture in my life. I had only intended to stay in Taiwan for a year and had decided long before I was due to leave, he would be coming home with me.

I found out about a month before I was due to leave Taiwan, he had failed one of his medical tests and was not allowed entry into Australia. I decided to stay in Taiwan to treat him for the disease, as there was no way I was leaving him there.

During this time, I made a flying visit home, to collect some medicine from a Vet Specialist at Murdoch University, as Taiwan didn’t have the necessary drugs required to treat his condition.. Eighteen months later, we finally got the all clear and headed to Australia … and the rest, as they say, is history! He’s had a wonderful life here and is a very spoilt puppy dog.

His English name is Jack but his Chinese name is Xiao Huang. One of the guards at my apartment complex in Taiwan called him Xiao Huang all the time. I used to take Jack everywhere with me, on my scooter. I wasn’t long before I started to notice everywhere we went, people seemed to know his Chinese name, they would point and say “Xiao Huang”.

I began to wonder how everyone seemed to know his name ?! I eventually found out, from a Taiwanese person I met who spoke English, that Xiao Huang just means “little yellow”. So in fact, he was not famous, they were just referring to his appearance!

Speaking of taking him everywhere on my scooter, he used to get so excited when he got on the scooter, he used to bark like crazy. This however created problems, as it alerted all the stray dogs in the area (unfortunately there were a lot in Taiwan) that we were coming. I had to navigate the alleyways at high speed, to try and outrun the dogs who would chase us. There was no way of stopping his excitement!”




5 year old Aussie Bulldog siblings, Breezer and JD

Rachael says “Breezer also known as Piggy, can be a full on, over the top playful pup, which lead her to damage both her knee joints. At only 18 months old, she had both knee joints repaired and after 6 months of recovery she never let her situation get her down. She amazed us with her recovery and how she never let it bother her – she always kept a happy face and had a wagging tail. A true trooper! Her outlook on life is inspiring as nothing will stop her being one happy little bulldog.

JD was the runt of the litter and always sleeping through feeding times. He had a lot of growing to do. Now he has grown into his own, he doesn’t realise how big he is. He still thinks he is a tiny puppy and can sit on our lap. He’s clumsy and goofy, but one of the sweetest loving dogs we know.

We love the fact Breezer thinks she is the boss of JD, but when you’re not looking, these two are the best of friends giving each other kisses. We wouldn’t change a thing about them and we consider ourselves lucky to have them in our lives.”

Breezer & JD



7 year old Lab, Grover and 3 year old Boxer x, Daniel

Rhoda says “Grover is a purebred lab who came from Melbourne where he was destined to be a Customs drug detector dog. He unfortunately (fortunately for us!) didn’t pass his training due to being easily distracted(yes that’s our boy still!) so at the age of 19 months in November 2009 he travelled to his forever home in Perth.

Daniel (aka Danny or Dan Dan) came to live with us when we adopted him in September 2013 from the RSPCA WA. Daniel has been mistreated and is an anxious, shy and at times can appear aggressive dog however that is not him at all. He is very loving and caring and loves nothing more than running around in the park with his big brother Grover.

Grover and Daniel are best friends who adore each other. We love them so much. Grover is my little tail who follows me everywhere when I’m home and Daniel is our little protector who thinks his role is to keep everyone away from “our” home!”

Grover & Daniel



2 year old brother and sister Irish Wolfhound x’s, Abbie and Ben, and their 10+ year old Rottie ‘bro’, Dozer

Rita says “My daughter Janine and I went looking for a present for my husband. A female hound was what we wanted and when we saw Abbie we fell in love with her, but we also could not take our eyes off of Ben – he was just so goofy and fun. He hasn’t changed and bringing them both home was the best thing we did.

Abbie is still very much a puppy at heart. She runs like the wind and could do this all day. She loves when we have a BBQ and likes to steal food when you arent looking. Janine found this out when she left her burger on the table only to come back to an empty plate and a smiling, happy Abbie walking away with the burger half eaten in her mouth.

We have a dam on our property and Abbie loves to run down for a swim everyday and when it’s hot this is were she likes to stay. And when its cold, don’t try and get in front of the fire the space is already taken by Abbs and she’s not moving for anyone.

The best way to describe Ben is goofy. He is loyal and fun loving. He waits for you when you come out of the toilet just in case there is an empty toilet roll for him to play with.   Ben likes to sleep at Janine’s place. He is also a master thief – loves Vicks and sore throat lollies, steals them from anywhere. My husband had a new pair of titanium glasses which he left on the bedside table. What a mistake! They didn’t taste too good but Ben thought they were fun to chew on. He once stole my camera off my desk and took it outside. Luckily it was still in its case and he got bored and left it. The same couldn’t be said for a string of pearls he ran off with. They scattered all over the driveway.

My husband surprised me with Dozer as a Christmas present. He has been my loyal companion since and is totally devoted to me.

Dozer loves his squeaky toys and he sleeps next to my bed, right next to his toys. We have a large pile of them. When he goes for his walk at night before bed, he always takes one of his toys with him and will not go out without one.   Dozer can’t climb onto objects these days as his back and legs aren’t great. He is an extremely sweet rotti though and loves cute fluffy things – toys especially.

In 2011 we seriously thought we would have to have him put to sleep. His arthritis was making him snappy and he was in constant pain. It was making him so miserable and we he was suffering. We decided to give stem cell therapy a try and the results were amazing! We are so glad we did it, he became a puppy again.

Dozer loves our grand kids, the cats (all 5 of them), anything that is small and cuddly. He would have made a great Dad I think.”

Abbie, Ben & Dozer