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Sarasota County, FL Sheriff's K9 Division

It has been said that one cannot move forward unless one gives back.  After serving as a Police Officer  in Lancaster County, PA it was time to move forward personally and professionally.  As a result, The Dog Boss made the move to Sarasota County, FL and made it a priority to thank the Sarasota County, FL Sheriff K9 teams for their specialty services.  Being a former K9 handler, Ed knows the sacrifice that the K9 handlers make even after their shift ends and the rigorous training each team faces.  As a sign of appreciation, The Dog Boss donated custom made patrol and tracking leashes for each team. Please consider making a donation to your local K9 teams or simply thank them for their efforts. 

"If you don't like what you see-volunteer" So, we did. My wife, son and I began volunteering for Sylvia's Animal Sanctuary in 2008. Sylvia's is based out of Bath County, KY and was founded by Susan Harris. Susan started the idea of the animal sanctuary two weeks after her husband died of lung cancer. She decided to channel her grief in a constructive way and asked for volunteers in the Northeast to round out her mission of saving the abandonded, abused and neglected dogs of KY.

Surely, someone reading this is wondering, 'Why volunteer for a KY rescue?' Allow me to explain. Bath County is a wearisome place to visit let alone reside. The county is plagued by 'good old boy' politics, its rural location and a lack of tolerance for outsiders with fresh ideas. It is a place where problems are solved with abuse (both human and animal) or indifference. Furthermore, Bath County lacks an animal shelter and, literally, depends upon a handful of volunteers to house and care for its homeless dog population. Year after year, Bath County tops the list when it comes to animal cruelty statistics and that is unacceptable. Simply stated, Bath County is a dirty little secret in terms of animal abuse and it needs to be exposed, but paramount to exposure is saving the lives of its dogs.

In order to save those lives foster homes in the Northeast are essential. The dogs are transported to locations in the Northeast on a bi-weekly basis making the 9 hour journey via cargo van. Each dog exits the van exhausted from the long stressful ride and stunned with fear of the unknown. It is hard on the heart to see their bewildered souls, but our hearts are softened when we imagine their promising new lives. So, we begin working in silence with each dog knowing that their success will be the noise they crave. We clean up messes, teach manners, set boundaries and accept dog hair as part of our wardrobe and home décor. Fostering is hard work, but it is the kind of work that stirs and delights the soul!

The dogs that we have fostered and adopted have taught us many life lessons. One, we have no doubt that volunteering is a responsibility at the core of every single person. No one has made it through life without help. Two, commitment and interest are very different. If you are interested you look for convenience, but if you are committed you will do whatever it takes to make something happen. Finally, be part of something bigger than yourself and you will find rewards greater than you can imagine.

As a small way to show our gratitude for the life lessons and experience we have gained a cargo van was purchased. Sylvia's operates on a shoestring budget and the fees associated with transporting the dogs to safety can be overwhelming. It is our hope that the donation of the van from The Dog Boss will enable Sylvia's to continue their life saving efforts for years to come.

The Dog Boss would also like to give a special thanks to all the sponsors.

1. Herr's Auto Works in Conestoga, PA (717)872-6290

2. Mr. Scoop (717)203-8858

3. Sign Me Up Graphics in Manheim, PA (717)664-1064

4. Sticky Graphics in Columbia, PA (717)314-0680

5. Nate Hamel in Quarryville, PA (717)587-1743

6. A&R Tire in Lancaster, PA (717)291-0133

7. Terry Haldeman in Berks County, PA (610)413-4019

8. Brimmers Notary in Lancaster, PA (717)392-6962

9. Abel Notary in Columbia, PA (717)684-7273

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