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Dogs, Sheep & Meat Pie at the Meeker Sheepdog Trials

If you think sheepdog trials involve dogs chasing sheep around, you’d be a little right, but not entirely right. Sheepdog trials are much more involved than I ever realized and our weekend trip to Meeker, in Northwest Colorado, was an eye opening experience. I liked it so much that I’m hoping to sponsor a dog/handler team in 2018.

Dogs, Sheep & Meat Pies at the Meeker Sheepdog Trials (7)

When I set out on this trip, I didn’t really intend to write specifically about the sheepdog trials, after all, I was there to judge and help promote the Jammin’ Lamb Festival, a lamb cook off in downtown. However, after watching the competition, I really wanted to write about it.

So what are sheepdog trials? In a nutshell, it’s a competitive sport in which herding dogs, under the command of their handler, move sheep around a large field, through fences and gates and into enclosures. The sport is mimicking the work that many of these dogs do at home on the ranch, although some of these dogs spend most of their time competing. Continue reading

HeidiTown.com Gives Back: Larimer Animal-People Partnership

LAPP logo lg purpleAs a reminder, I started the HeidiTown Gives Back Campaign in February 2012, as a way to highlight some great Colorado charities by giving them a blog post and free, one month ad space on HeidiTown.com. So far, five nonprofits have participated.

This month’s recipient of the HeidiTown.com Gives Back campaign is Larimer Animal-People Partnership.

This organization came to my attention several years ago because I write about events and LAPP holds the Doggie Olympics each September in Fort Collins. The 17th Annual Doggie Olympics is scheduled for Sunday, September 23, 2012.

I had the opportunity to researched LAPP last year while writing an article about working and therapy dogs for a local Northern Colorado magazine, and was truly moved by what this organization does.

The Larimer Animal-People Partnership was founded in 1990, and is affiliated with the Delta Society. Many of their members represent other animal-related or service organizations throughout the community.

What is the mission of Larimer Animal-People Partnership?

This is a group of people who believe in the power of the human-animal bond. Animals have healing abilities that are powerful and mysterious. I know this to be true because I’ve seen examples of it in my own life.

LAPP strives to encourage positive interactions between humans and animals. They work to increase public awareness of the significance of the human-animal bond by offering presentations and community service programs.

Community service programs including outreach at Crossroads Safehouse, a shelter for women and children experiencing domestic violence. Team members at LAPP also conduct library visits to read with children.  Teams work with the counseling staff in the Teen Residential Treatment Center at Mountain Crest Psychiatric Hospital and routinely visit Oakbrook II, an independent living community for the elderly. LAPP teams are often involved in other community outreach programs involving animals.

I am happy to be donating free ad space to this worthy organization for the month of September, and I hope you will check out the Doggie Olympics on September 23 at Civic Center Park in Fort Collins, Colorado. This event is an opportunity for your dog to strut her stuff in a fun and safe environment. Learn all about the 17th Annual Doggie Olympics and register HERE.

To learn more about Larimer Animal-People Partnership go to COLAPP.org.

 

HeidiTown.com Gives Back: Freedom Service Dogs

Freedom Service Dogs LOGOAs a reminder, HeidiTown.com Gives Back campaign kicks off this February, and throughout the year, one Colorado-based nonprofit of my choosing will receive free HeidiTown ad space. On the first Monday of each month, I will highlight that month’s nonprofit.

The first recipient of my HeidiTown.com Gives Back campaign is Freedom Service Dogs, located in Englewood, Colorado. This nonprofit incorporates two things that are close to my heart – military veterans and rescue dogs.

Freedom Service Dogs lab photo

Photos provided by Freedom Service Dogs

Established in 1987, the mission of Freedom Service Dogs is to train dogs to aid disabled military veterans, and they have received national attention in the past several years for their work. One of the greatest things about this program is that all the dogs have been rescued from shelters.

These amazing dogs assist veterans who have become disabled during service, who have developed PTSD or other psychological trauma, or who have developed medical problems later in life after their service.

Find this nonprofit online at FreedomServiceDogs.org and learn about the program from veterans whose lives have been transformed by their service dog. You can also find Freedom Service Dogs on Facebook.

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