Thursday, February 28, 2013

Be Bullish and Adopt A Loving Pit Bull Today

Sweet Pea is described as being a great family dog who loves kids, adults and complete strangers. She is house broken and crate trained.
The Posh Puppy Boutique is continuing its series of helping unwanted and abandoned pets find forever homes with loving human parents. Today’s post covers a breed often thought of as highly aggressive, just as the name suggests: put bulls.
Click here for a post dealing with large and giant breeds. Click here for a post dealing exclusively with Chihuahuas. Email David Reynolds at with any suggestions for other breeds, especially those you like.
Most U.S. residents have never heard of American Staffordshire Terriers. However, these same people will often acknowledge knowing these same dogs by their street name of “pit bull.”
The term “pit bull” also refers to the American Pit Bull Terrier, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier and any cross breedings between the three related breeds.
Pebbles is a “blue and white” mix who is good with most dogs, kids and adults. She is mellow, well-behaved and gentle with children.
American Staffordshire Terriers were first bred in the 19th Century in the English region of Staffordshire as a mix between English Bulldogs and the White English Terrier, Fox Terrier or Black and Tan Terrier.
Also known as Am Staffs, these dogs are described by the American Kennel Club as being a people-oriented dog who is loyal to its family and very protective of them. These dogs have the reputation for being dangerous and aggressive, mainly because they are often seen in dog fighting events.
Archie is available now through Smilin’ Pitbull Rescue in Stamford, Conn
The notoriety associated with pit bulls gives the breed a reputation based on myth and misinformation, not fact. Many pit bull owners will tell anyone willing to listen that their dogs are sweet, gentle, loving creatures. Their reputation, though, also gives predatory humans pause when seeing one with its owner or in a home.Their gentle true behavior combined with a ferocious reputation makes them nearly ideal family pets.
Pit bulls’ reputation also means that some cities prevent dog owners from having this breed within their municipal boundaries. Here’s another example of how the ban in Ontario, Canada affects one person … who happens to be a Major League Baseball player.
Aerosol and Krylon are a bonded pair of females who were rescued from a highly abusive environment. Both are dog friendly and very loving.
The end result is this: there are a lot of unwanted, unwelcome pit bulls in shelters across the land.
If you are thinking about adopting a dog, you can’t go wrong with any breed. Just be sure the pet is a good match for you, your family and your environment.
To learn more about Pit Bulls, and possibly adopt one, visit any or all of these sites:
  • Pit Bull Rescue Central has educational information and offers guidance to anyone considering adopting one of these dogs.
  • Rescue Me has a list of pit bull rescue sites organized by state.
  • Bad Rap provides information, training, owner support and rescue services nationwide. It was named as the #1 high-impact non-profit for Local Animal Welfare, Rights & Protection by Guidestar’s Philantropedia.
  • Bull911 has a listing of groups nationwide dealing exclusively with pit bulls.
  • Our Pack offers adoption, placement services and education, including same-sex pairings. It is based in South San Francisco.
  • Shortywood is the rescue site that formed the basis of the television show “Pit Boss.” The shows stars “little person” Shorty Rossi, his family and staff as they rescue and help find homes for a breed he considers to be “as misunderstood as he is.”
  • Out of the Pits showcases the true nature of pit bulls as a therapy, sport and working dog. It offers education, programs and adoptions.
  • Ring Dog Rescue is dedicated to “bull breeds” with bulldog lineage. It offers adoption and foster services plus a calendar of events in Virginia.
  • Small Time Dog Rescue & Dead Dog Walking Pit Bull Rescue is an Oregon-based group.
  • Mayday Pit Bull Rescue & Advocacy is a Phoenix, Ariz.-based group dedicated to rescuing, rehabilitating and placing pit bulls and pit bull mixes.
  • Pit Sisters focuses its efforts on the northeast Florida area. It provides adoptions, events and resources for current and potential pit bull owners.
  • Bless the Bullys is a small Tennessee non-profit rescue that also fights breed-specific legislation.
  • Fugee’s Rescue is based in Raleigh, N.C. Its mission is to rescue, care for and rehome neglected, abused and homeless dogs, primarily pit bulls.
  • Smilin’ Pit Bull Rescue based in the Northeast dedicated to find homes for unwanted and abandoned pit bulls.

This list of pit bull rescue sites could go on and on and on, just as it could for any dog breed. Please consider adopting a rescue dog or cat. You deserve a new best friend and they deserve you.
This post is brought to you as a public service by the Posh Puppy Boutique and David Reynolds, pet lovers all. The Posh Puppy Boutique sells stylish clothing and accessories for all breeds of dogs and cats. It does not sell pets.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Aiding Pets Helps A Client

This blog post generated nearly 300 hits in one day. A similar post got 15 hits in more than  two weeks.


Some of my earlier blog posts have veered away from my stated purpose of providing marketing and communications tips. My blog has literally gone to the dogs … intentionally.
One of my clients sells clothing and accessories primarily to upscale dog owners. She is also the proud owner of several rescue dogs, just as I am. And she, like me, firmly believes that rescue pets make great life-long companions.
Savvy marketers, though, will see the purpose behind each of these posts: informing and educating potential clients while at the same time giving them more reasons for brand loyalty.
Pets are not like members of our family. They are members of our family, at least for some pet owners. Metrics cannot measure the emotional attachment some people have for their pets. Giving people reasons to think of your business in a positive light is always a great idea, especially when your message is trying to help people, not sell them something.

Information Works

As of noon Tuesday, Feb. 19, this post on the Posh Puppy Boutique blog had gotten 295 hits since it was posted one day earlier. It was listed as a public service announcement.
similar post with a different headline—but the same photos and same essential links to Chihuahua rescue sites—had 15 hits. Key differences are:
  • A headline that tugs on the heart strings—“Help Abandoned Chihuahuas Find Forever Homes”—gets more response than the label headline “Chihuahua Rescue Sites.”
  • The post is “selling” clients on the idea of adopting and rescuing a pet, not “selling” them a product. However, the Posh Puppy name and logo appear prominently in both blog posts.
  • A different, more extensive set of Google Key Words was used with the Posh Puppy piece than with the one appearing on this blog. The list of keywords (i.e., “tags”) and the 10 links to external sites helped boost the Posh Puppy post’s page ranking on Google. This means that more people were likely to see it. 

Blog Posts Are Only Part Of The Process

The Posh Puppy Boutique uses a variety of methods to attract and retain customers. Two blog posts each week, which I write, are only one of the ways this firm promotes itself.
Other methods used frequently—as in several times each day—are comments on Facebook and Twitter. Press releases mentioning the Posh Puppy name are distributed about every 10 days. This time frame is frequent enough to gain attention but not so often the messages get lost in the clutter or become boring.
Posh Puppy’s owner has gotten television coverage both locally in the Sacramento, Calif. region and nationally. Some of her products also grace the pages of national magazines.
Effective promotion takes a willingness to constantly expend money and energy promoting your business. Kudos to the Posh Puppy Boutique for doing just that.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Use Google’s Free Key Word Tool, Excel to Boost SEO

Google's Key Word search tool.
Having the best web site on the planet is a waste of money and time if no one can find it.
Search engine optimization helps people, especially potential customers, find your site. A technique I use with nearly every document I create will help you increase your visibility and make it easier for your clients to find you.
You will need to have a copy of Microsoft Excel and internet access first. It also assumes your original document is created in Word.
The left KeyWords panel.

Google AdWords

Start by going to the Google AdWords page. You do not need a Google AdWords account to get started. Now follow these steps:
  1. Complete the security step.
  2. Enter the term or terms you want to look for.
  3. Check the left-hand list and ensure you have [Exact] or “Phrase” marked or your list will have terms unrelated to your needs.
  4. After getting your basic list of terms, sort it.
  5. Start by clicking on Competition in the keyword pane. Click until you see Low.
  6. Go to Local Monthly Searches (searches for these terms in the US only) and start adding terms.

The "Competition" section.


Excel Steps

That finishes the Google part. Now you need to copy those terms and paste them into Excel.
Follow these steps to create what I have on the second spreadsheet.
  1. Use the “Paste Special” and select “Values” to put your terms in a column.
  2. Use Search and Replace (Ctrl-H in Windows) to find and eliminate extra characters such as brackets.
  3. Do a Data, Sort to organize your terms alphabetically if you wish.
  4. Assuming your terms start in Cell A2 (A1 is a heading), put this text in Cell B2: =A2
  5. Now put this formula in Cell B3: =B2&“; ”&A3
  6. That tells Excel to copy the contents of cell B2, add a semicolon (Word wants semicolons) followed by a space, then copy the contents of Cell A3
  7. Use the Autofill command (Crtl-D in Windows) to fill your list
  8. Now take your final cell, copy it, and repeat the Paste Special, Values in a blank cell.

Word Tips

Copy the version you just pasted without formulas (the Paste Special, Value one) and place it in the Tags section of your Word document. You’ll find that when performing the Save or Save As functions.
The good news is that if you save the tags in a Word version, it also saves them in every other version you create, such as HTML for web pages or Adobe PDFs.

More Tips

Some programs such as Word use semicolons to separate key words, also known as tags. Other programs, and many web sites, use commas as separators. You might wish to make two or more lists because of this.
One list would be sorted alphabetically while another is done by priority. That way your most important terms appear first. Since some free press release distribution sites limit the number of key words, that can be critical.
You can also copy your formula into a different column and replace the semicolon with a comma. Be sure to change your “B” column to the one you are now using.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Have a Big Heart: Adopt A Homeless Big Dog Today

Gentle Giants rescues dogs of all large breeds.

I posted a list of 10 websites that help people rescue unwanted Chihuahuas not too long ago.
While Chihuahuas are among the tiniest of dog breeds—and also very popular, especially in urban settings where space is at a premium—some folks like their dogs a little larger.
According to Just Dog Breeds, some of the largest “giant” breeds include MastiffsSaint BernardsGreat Pyrenees and Great Danes.
Popular large breeds, which are smaller than the giants but still considered big pooches, are: Golden RetrieversAlaskan MalamutesGerman ShepherdsDoberman PinschersRottweilersLabrador RetrieversEnglish Setters and Coonhounds.
Each breed has its own distinct temperament but as with any dog, the way it is treated generally determines its disposition. I’ve know a “ferocious” Rottweiler that was more likely to lick you to death then bit you, for example.
Jasper is one of many dogs available for adoption through Homeless Hounds.
This is only a partial list of the many rescue groups specializing in large dog breeds. Your best bet is to always start with your local animal shelter. Many shelters get dogs of all sizes, genders, breeds and disposition, including paperless pure-breds. Some shelters will even contact others then call you when they have the breed you are looking for.
·  Gentle Giants Rescue is based in California and deals with all large breeds including giant breeds such as Great Danes and Mastiffs.
·  Homeless Hounds is based in Sonoma County in Northern California. It deals with dogs of all breeds, from large to small and in-between.
·  West Coast Mastiff & Large Breed Rescue saves primarily Mastiffs, Great Danes and St. Bernards plus other giant breeds.
·  Big Dawgs Rescue is located in the East Bay community of Livermore, Calif.
·  California Great Dane Rescue helps find homes for this giant breed.
·  Southern California Golden Retriever Rescue has dogs that always fostered, never kenneled and temperament tested as well.
·  The Golden Retriever Club of America National Rescue Committee has links and connections to many local breed-specific groups.
·  Rottweiler Rescue Sites Nationwide has state by state listing for this large breed, including five in California alone.
·  Gulfstream Guardian Angels Rottweiler Rescue is based in Miami and helps find forever homes for these large, loveable, loyal dogs.
·  Doberman Pinscher Rescue USA & Canada has listings of various Doberman rescue groups in North America, including by state.
·  Hand Me Down Dobes is based in Ohio and serves several surrounding states. “The Doberman is intelligent and eager to please, making a loyal and devoted pet. When young, most are energetic and playful needing consistent exercise and attention,” just like any other breed.
·  The American German Shepherd Rescue Association was created, “as a fund raising group to operate programs which protect the German Shepherd Dog from suffering due to cruelty, homelessness, ignorance, neglect and misuse. This site includes a list of rescue groups by state.
·   Central California Labrador Retriever Rescue covers California’s Central Valley from Sacramento to Merced. It has generally has young dogs and senior citizens available for immediate adoption.
·  Lab Rescue of LRCP covers the Mid Atlantic Region. Its function is finding homes for Labs.
·  Above and Beyond English Setter Rescue includes board members from across the nation, though the group is based in Lancaster, Penn.
·  Love of Breeds has listings of rescue sites for many breeds, including English Setters.
This is just a partial list of a few rescue groups dealing with large dog breeds. Five minutes of searching on-line will help point you in the direction of a breed and group where your new best friend is waiting. Have a heart and save a life: Adopt a homeless dog (or cat) today.