Pack Up Your Pets and Hit the Road with These Dog-Friendly Michigan Destinations

Going on a trip wouldn’t be the same without the entire family – especially your furry family members! In celebration of warm weather arriving for spring, we put together a list of just a few pet-friendly destinations in Michigan. So, pack up Fido and Fluffy and hit the road.

Take a weekend trip to Traverse City, where you can climb mountains of sand, play on dog-friendly beaches and spend quality time with your furry friend. Spend the day in their Victorian downtown district, home to more than 150 shops, boutiques, galleries and restaurants. Treat your furry friend to a special treat at D.O.G Bakery, on Front St. just outside the downtown district, with a variety of treats, guaranteed to satisfy even the pickiest pooch. Click here for more on the story.


Defendant Pleads Guilty to Animal Cruelty Charge in Duct Taping of Cat

photo credit: Grand Traverse Veterinary Hospital

Mykhaylo Narolskyy, was charged with abandoning/animal cruelty in March of 2017 regarding an incident that happened in November of 2016. Ronnie the cat, who has since passed away from cancer, was found covered in duct tape by a good samaritan who called Animal Control.

Narolskyy was in court today to face the charges. He entered a guilty plea and sentencing will be on July 25th.

Lowell Veterinarian Bruce Langlois to Stand Trial

A veterinarian, who is accused of practicing and performing procedures on animals after the state revoked his license, denied the allegations against him in court on Monday, and the case will now move forward to trial. During his arraignment in Huron County Circuit Court, Bruce P. Langlois, of Lowell, pleaded not guilty to three counts of unauthorized practice of veterinary medicine stemming from an investigation by the Michigan Attorney General’s Office. Click here for the rest of the story.

AC PAW Wins 2017 Red Hot Best Award Again in 2017!

It was another banner year for AC PAW and they were recognized by winning an award for “Best Fundraising Event by a Nonprofit Organization.” The award was given by MyNorth/Traverse, Northern Michigan’s Magazine and was voted on by the public in an online voting contest.

The winners of 100 categories were announced on May 17th at the Red Hot Best Bash at the Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel and Founder, June McGrath happily accepted the award. Congratulations, AC PAW!

New Enrichment Program at Cherryland Humane Society Aims to Benefit the Cats and Dogs

from the Cherryland Humane Society Facebook Page

The Cherryland Humane Society Enrichment Program  will encompass the general welfare and enrichment of the Cherryland Humane Society shelter animals. Enrichment for shelter animals will decrease and eliminate stress, add mental stimulation, improve socialization and bonding as well as enhance quality of life, and increase adopt-ability. The program will teach our animals to be more confident, increase their willingness to learn and to connect to others. The program will consist of evening walks, training, mental stimulation, grooming, arts and crafts for the animals, outside play pen activities, interactions, cat leash walking, cat crafts such as boxes and mobiles and many many more! Continue reading

Pet Blood Donors Help Other Dogs, Cats Through Michigan State University program

Dogs and cats can help save the lives of other animals through a blood donor program at the Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine. The program, which has been around for more than 40 years, uses blood donations from volunteer dogs and cats to give transfusions to animals in need. Dogs have 13 blood types, and cats have three blood types. Only one in 15 dogs is a universal donor, and there is no universal blood type for cats.

Animals may need blood transfusions to treat anemia, or a low red blood cell count. Anemia may be caused by blood loss during surgery or trauma, such as when an animal is hit by a car or involved in a fight. Click here for the rest of the story.

Animal Bill to Create Harsher Penalties for Abused or Neglected Animals Passes Michigan Senate Judiciary Committee

SB 276/277 Passed the Senate Judiciary committee on April 25th and the next step is for it to go to the whole Senate. Click here for an analysis of the bill.

The bill is supported by HSUS, ASPCA and Attorneys for Animals. Continue reading

Owner of Dog who Attacked Grand Traverse County Deputy Charged

The Grand Traverse County prosecutor has filed a charge against the owner of the pit bull who attacked a deputy. 26-year-old Amber Kraft has been charged with not having her 1-year-old dog Kilo registered, which is required in Michigan. Click here for the rest of the story.

Anonymous Donor Covers Cost for New Cat Kennels at Cherryland Humane Society

It was move-in day for the cats at Cherryland Humane Society on Monday, as volunteers worked to assemble some brand new kennels. The kennels cost around $48,000 and every single penny was paid for by a generous anonymous donor. Click here for more on the story.

The Ugly Truth about Grand Traverse County Animal Control

Imagine if you will, a Grand Traverse County Animal Control Officer who has 601 square miles to cover in 25 hours a week. That area has about 90,000 people which equates to 35,000 families and about 13,000 dogs. Dogs like the one in the photo above depend on part-time Grand Traverse County Animal Control Officer, Deb Zerafa. The taxpayers also depend on her to keep them safe. However, these dogs and the taxpayers have only been able to depend on her help on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. The cries of the dogs in the county and calls from concerned citizens have not been heard four days out of seven or when Zerafa is sick or on vacation because she is the only Grand Traverse County Animal Control Officer.

Seventeen months after Grand Traverse County eliminated their Animal Control Division and their two full-time officers, they are no closer to finding a permanent solution to providing adequate Animal Control services in the county. The county continues to marginalize the Animal Control Division and the services that the county residents depend on. They are not providing the hours, funding, staff or respect the division needs. The county’s stop-gap measure of hiring Zerafa part-time in October of 2016 seems to be a decision made to quell the discontent of the public instead of a decision to provide a fully-functional Animal Control Division. Hiring one part-time Animal Control Officer is not a serious solution to Animal Control issues in Grand Traverse County. Hiring a second and only seasonal Animal Control Specialist is also not a serious solution. How will this help the high volume of calls that they receive in the winter months – or in the spring or fall? Continue reading

Wexford County Shelter Shares to Form Non-Profit Group

According to a post on the Wexford County Shelter Shares Facebook page, the volunteers who run the website, Facebook page and volunteer at the shelter are going to form a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. A supporter of the group offered to pay for the costs of the application process. Once the non-profit group is formed, the organization will be able to accept tax-deductible donations and also apply for grants.

Wexford County also has two other non-profit groups to help with local animal issues. Those groups are Animal Advocates of Wexford County and Wonderland Humane Society.

These “friends of” animal shelter groups and many others in the country are able to help animal shelters with fostering, donations, fundraisers, spay/neutering, as well as other pet-related issues in their communities.

Dog Attacks Grand Traverse County Deputy, Kills Another Dog

An incident over the weekend left one dog dead, another shot and a Grand Traverse County sheriff’s deputy with several dog bites. It happened Friday night around 4:30 at a home in Interlochen. Click here for the rest of the story.

Missaukee Humane Society On Their Way to Build a New Cat Quarantine

The Missaukee Humane Society has been awarded a $30,000 grant for their new cat quarantine. They still need an additional $6,000 for more cat kennels and are asking for help. You can donate online through their website at or mail a donation to: Missaukee Humane Society, Box D, Lake City, MI 49651.

Traverse City’s Pets Naturally Buys D.O.G. Bakery

The D.O.G. Bakery announced today that they have been acquired by local holistic pet food store, Pets Naturally. The D.O.G. Bakery will close their downtown location on Saturday, May 13th – but their treats will be available at Pets Naturally starting the week of May 22nd. Pets Naturally is located at 1420 W. South Airport Rd. in Traverse City and are open Monday through Friday 10 am to 6 pm, Saturday 9 am to 5 pm and Sunday 11 am to 3 pm.

The D.O.G. Bakery is assuring their customers that Pets Naturally will be able to handle all of their needs for treats, gear and healthy food choices and that everyone will see most of the current D.O.G. Bakery staff in the new location. Former D.O.G. Bakery owners, Chris and Karry Barolo, say that combining the bakery with Pet Naturally’s expertise in nutrition and supplements will provide an even greater resource for customers and their pets.

Cade is Newest K9 Officer in Grand Traverse County

Grand Traverse County’s newest K9 Officer, Cade, is a male, American born German Shepherd. He is about 1-1/2 years old, born on November 27, 2015 and started his K9 career in December of 2016. He is a dual purpose K-9 specializing in narcotics and is assigned to K9 handler Deputy Mike Gray. The purchase of Cade was made possible by a donation from the Les and Anne Biederman Foundation. Cade is one of three K9 officers in Grand Traverse County. You can read about the other K9 Officers here.

Readers Shower North Dog Hospice, Silver Muzzle Cottage, with Donations

Since the nonprofit Silver Muzzle Cottage was founded a few years ago, donations came a few dollars at a time, raised through bake sales or donation jars on the front counters at local veterinarian offices. But since it was featured in the Free Press on Sunday, readers touched by the story of Kim Skarritt’s hospice and rescue for senior dogs have given more than $12,000. Skarritt was stunned by the outpouring of generosity. Click here for more on the story.

Funds Needed to Help Rescued Rabbits

From Wonderland Rabbit Rescue

Momma came to Wonderland on March 20, 2017. She was part of a forfeiture from a hoarder. There were 27 rabbits. ALL 27 rabbits were kept in a 4 ft x 4 ft square pen. Oh you read that right. 27!!! One homemade chicken wire and wood square pen. Males and females. When we first saw the 27, we noted not only how emaciated they all were but also all the males had severe injuries, most full of pus and needing antibiotics. All were scared and you could tell they had never been touched. We checked out a few and talked to the Sheriff about coordinating Rescue. We turned around and there was Momma, all alone in her pen with 3 tiny little babies laying on the newpaper. (They threw away her nest when they cleaned her cage). Apparantly she had the litter the day before. There had been 8 babies and only the 3 were left. That is so incredibly sad. We knew they would never live without a nest and with her being so stressed she may not feed. So we brought her and the 3 babies back to the Shelter. Continue reading

Dogs Can Get Lyme Disease Too

Temperatures are warming and it’s getting more fun for people and pets to go outside to hike and play.Which makes this a good time to let dog owners know something they may never have considered: Dogs can get Lyme disease, too. You probably already know that Lyme disease is spread by ticks and is dangerous to human – but they are also dangerous to dogs. Click here for the rest of the story.

More story links on ticks and lyme disease…

Michigan’s Rise In Lyme Disease Linked To Increased Tick Populations

Photos of Ticks That Carry Lyme Disease

Tick Removal Trick 

How You Can Help to Save Kittens from Being Killed in Shelters by Being a Kitten Caregiver

From Alley Cat Allies

Through the innovative Wait Until 8 program, Alley Cat Allies is helping shelters and communities work together to save orphaned kittens from being killed. The program empowers people to become at-home kitten caregivers for neonatal kittens until they reach eight weeks of age and are available for adoption.

“Every year, well-meaning people find thousands of kittens outdoors and bring them to shelters because they want to help, not knowing that most shelters lack the programs to save their lives,” said Becky Robinson, president and founder of Alley Cat Allies. “The heartbreaking truth is most kittens brought into shelters are killed. By providing basic resources and know-how, shelters can harness that compassion to save kittens’ lives.” Continue reading

Pageant Runner-Up and Pit Bull Advocate Competing Again

Traverse City’s Jessica Mason Froehlich, First Runner Up in the Ms. America Pageant, will be competing on April 29th and 30th in the Mrs. Michigan Pageant in Jenison, representing Traverse City. Women across our state compete to be Mrs. Michigan, which is the state level pageant for the Mrs. America Pageant. Mrs. America is the premier pageant for married women over the age of 18. Women compete in three categories including interview (50%), physical fitness/swimsuit (25%) and evening gown. Froehlich says, “the interview is the most important piece because that is most reflective of what the year as Mrs. Michigan will look like. The title allows the winner to do just about anything she desires to make a difference in her community.The crown commands the attention necessary to make the biggest impact.”

Froehlich continues her work in bully prevention and that will be her platform again during this pageant. She gives presentations at schools, teaching kids to identify bullying behaviors in themselves and teaches them skills to solve the problem, get help, call out bullying in their friends and also to stand up to those who may be acting out against them. She says, “Teaching kids to act with compassion, rather than just reacting to a situation, helps them become for thoughtful and kind. These are skills that will not only serve them through their lives, but will improve our society as a whole.” Continue reading

Pets Naturally Named a Top Ten Finalist for Small Business of the Year

Professional services firms, contractors, food and beverage makers and entertainment facilities are among the finalists in the Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce 2017 Small Business Celebration. The Top 10 SBC finalists in the running to become the Chamber’s 2017 Hagerty Small Business of the Year were announced by Chamber officials Wednesday. Click here for more on the story. 

Pets Naturally website is here.

Petition Drive Started to Get Justice for Ronnie the Cat

photo credit:

In November of 2016, a cat was found duct taped in Grand Traverse County. Mykhaylo Narolskyy, a Ukranian, has been charged with abandonment/cruelty to an animal. He appeared in court for his arraignment on Friday, April 21st and pleaded not guilty through a translator. He will receive a court appointed attorney and an observer in court noted that the trial date will be May 11th. The Judge in the case is Michael S. Stepka who grew up in Traverse City and graduated from Traverse City Central High School and went on to graduate from NMC, Central Michigan University and the University of Detroit School of Law.

Animal advocates in the county, with the help of Jennifer Isbell with Pet Friends Magazine, have put together a petition to present to the Prosecutor and the Judge so that they know that the community takes this crime seriously and wants the maximum sentencing imposed. The signers of the petition are asking for the maximum sentence of 92 days in jail, $1000 fine and 200 hours of community service in addition to Narolskyy not being allowed to own animals and requiring that he cover the cost of the cat’s veterinary care.

You can sign the petition outside the entrance to the Traverse City library this Saturday, April 29th from 10 am to 3 pm. Signatures of Grand Traverse County residents are especially needed on the petition, however anyone who is concerned about the case can sign it.

It has also been learned that Ronnie passed away of cancer a few months ago. As sad as that news is, many animal lovers in Traverse City hope that justice can be served for him in this case. A maximum sentence would also serve as a message to other potential abusers that animal cruelty will be taken seriously in our county.