Archive for March, 2010

Help local artists raise funds for CSU’s Animal Cancer Center

Right now when you download the ingenious eCards program from Quio and local artists Pop Art Pet, the generous ladies behind Pop Art are donating their entire portion of the proceeds to CSU’s Animal Cancer Center (ACC).

When you think eCards you probably think
of the old model.  You know the kind: you have to go online, register, log in, configure your card, enter the email, send it out and then your card’s recipient has go thorough a similar rigmarole to pick up the card.

Well, Quio (pronounced “Key-oh”) has come up with a clever alternative to all this clicking and registering and logging in. They have created a program you download directly onto your desktop so it’s just sitting there ready to go at any time — like your own personal stationery. Quio’s eCards are sent straight from you to your recipient’s inbox with no middle man. Told you it was clever.

Quio has a wide range of cards to choose from but of course the ones incorporating Pop Art Pet’s unique breed of art are the best — and not just because of the colorfully captivating images. Pop Art Pet’s co-owner, Glenda Alexander, explains how they linked up with Quio and why this is so important to them.

“When Josh D’Alessio at Quio approached us about using our artwork in the digital eCards program, we were flattered and agreed of course! Then we asked if there was some way the program could help raise funds for cancer research for animals since we lost our beautiful dog, Kylie, to cancer. Also our very close friend lost her adorable boy, Trouble, to cancer around the same time. We are always looking for ways to honor them so we jumped at this chance.”

When you (and all your friends and all their friends’ friends) purchase the Pop Art Pet eCard program for a very reasonable $20, Pop Art Pet will donate 100% of their portion of the proceeds ($10) to CSU’s Animal Cancer Center to support research and treatment programs there.

So how do you purchase Quio’s Pop Art Pet eCard program? Easy. Go download the free samples at Try it out, send a couple sample cards for free. Once you love it, just click on the “buy it” option; if for some reason you don’t love, just drag it to the recycle bin and that’s the end of it. The one bummer: this program is not Mac-friendly. If you are Mac, you can still help out by passing this along to all your PC friends. If you are PC you can now send a cute, colorful card to all the animal lovers in your life for any occasion.

In closing, the Pop Art Pet ladies would like to express their appreciation:  “Thank you for helping us help the animals with cancer, which we do in memory of our lost loves, Kylie and Trouble.”

More info:

CSU’s Animal Cancer Center’s mission “is to improve the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer in pet animals, translating our research and knowledge to also benefit people with cancer.” In their pursuit of this mission, every penny counts! Visit them at

Pop Art Pet : Using technology and creativity, they transform your pet’s photos into a whimsical work of customized art! Choose from the Warhol-esque Pop Art style, the kitschy, comic style of Lichtenstein or a traditional style portrait for those whose preference is more contemporary and less trendy. Visit them at to learn how they can create custom artwork like you see here from your own pet’s photos.

Finally! A doggy chastity belt

Finally the product we’ve all …  wait, no one was actually waiting for this were they?  A doggy style chastity belt to keep them from doin’ it doggy style?   Okay, IF you were waiting, it’s arrived.  It’s called the PABS which stands for “Pet Anti-Breeding System” and it’s being touted as the greatest doggy birth control since fences.

For guardians who don’t want their pets permanently altered by surgery, folks like breeders with show dogs, this is actually a pretty good idea. It’s a harness with strategically placed mesh pads that disallow any canine copulation.   The company is Highly Favored Creations and their tagline: “Stop it, block it, lock it.”  Check it out at PABS for Pets

“Pawscars”: the animal version of the Oscars handed out by American Humane

The American Humane Association are the ones who add the “no animals were harmed in the filming of this movie”blurb at the end of movies where, you know, no animals were harmed during the filming.  They have reps who monitor over 1,000 films per year.  A job I highly covet.  Can you imagine?  “What do you do?”  “Oh, I hang out with the animals on the sets of blockbuster movies and make sure they’re happy.”  Anyway, American Humane also does a very cool thing called the Pawscars: an animal version of the Oscars.

This year’s Pawscar winners:

Best Alien Animals: ‘Avatar’ The Na’vi “direhorses” (Pa’li) were six-legged horse-like creatures created using motion-capture technology, in which real horses wore miniature computerized motion sensors near joints and facial areas to capture their movements. The live action was performed in a motion-capture studio covered in dark fabric and carpet (called a “void”) and then recorded as computer animation data, which was then mapped onto a computerized 3-D model. Non-toxic, non-irritating silcone adhesives were used and washed off each evening after filming.

Best Newcomer Actor: ‘Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince’
A Neapolitan mastiff named “Uno” had been adopted by her owners/trainers prior to becoming a rookie animal actor. Trainers speculate that she was abused by a previous owner because she initially would cower around noises and crouch to the floor upon being approached too suddenly. But, while working on the set of “Harry Potter,” surrounded by a patient owner/trainer and other affectionate cast and crew members, she gained confidence and trust and adored the attention everyone gave her. Trainers believe Uno is destined to be an admired movie star in no time!

Best Cameo: ‘Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen’ As he has done in other films, director Michael Bay cast his own dog in a role. His bull mastiff, playing the role of Mikaela’s (Megan Fox) dog, performed mild action on screen, which was effortless for the canine actor, considering his cinematic “human lineage.” And while the American Humane staff members were viewing a pre-release screening of the film as part of the disclaimer process, this massive mastiff made yet another cameo….by sitting at the staffer’s feet during the screening. One might say this dog loves to check out his own work (or kiss up to a Pawscar judge)!

Most Erotic Exotic: ‘The Hangover’
Yes, it is possibly the funniest movie ever and the tiger played a big part in that.  Wanna know how they created the more randy of the tiger scenes?
You remember, it’s when the guys are seen on video walking a tiger into a parked police car. As the tiger enters the car, one of the men pretends to “hump” the tiger. So, considering the ferocious nature of this exotic animal, how might a person do that to such a beast? To capture this scene, one trainer hid inside the police car while another trainer doubled as the actor and guided the tiger into the car. He then pretended to hump the animal as it entered the car. This same scene was then filmed again, only this time the actors were used along with the trainer. The actors held the end of a long leash, and a trainer held the middle part of the leash that actually connected to the tiger. In post-production, the trainer and his portion of the leash were digitally removed, making it appear as if the actor was really leading the tiger. The actors were then filmed walking to the police car and pantomiming the fake sexual motions, which were later combined with the footage filmed with the trainer.

Biggest Diva: ‘Did You Hear About The Morgans?’
Hugh Grant is a leading man in several films, but “Little Bart” the bear is a big star in his own right. One of only a handful of Kodiak bears to work in the film industry, this 1,100-pound actor has worked on numerous films and commercials. But has his fame gone to his head? Grant teasingly told the press that the bear was so demanding, he would not leave his personal trailer until he had “12 cans of iced tea and had been hosed down from head to foot” (which American Humane assures was not the case). Although the famous human actor joked about the famous animal actor, the excellent trainers and Certified Animal Safety Representatives were nothing but serious when it came to making sure this “furry diva” was well-treated and protected, along with his human co-stars.

Best Action Scene: ‘The Proposal’
If any scene in this film could leave more of an impression than the infamous naked scene between Ryan Reynolds and Sandra Bullock, it would arguably be the scene in which the family dog is snatched up by an eager eagle, which flies off with the pup in its mouth. Thankfully, this intense-looking action was achieved using highly trained animal actors and some good old-fashioned “movie magic.” Thanks to great editing and a trained eagle that scooped up a sack made of green-screen material, viewers were left believing that this mighty bird gracefully sought vengeance on this yipping dog by flying him around and dropping him onto Bullock’s character below. In truth, the dog and eagle were never even in the same shot together.

Best Chase Scene: ‘Hotel For Dogs’
Dogs love to chase cats, balls, their owners…and sometimes, even a van driven by heroic teens. Near the end of this film, main characters Andi and Bruce release all the dogs from the shelter, which then chase the teens’ van down the street to the hotel. Trainers rehearsed the dogs for several weeks to master this well-choreographed scene, which involved the most dogs ever filmed in a single scene on an American Humane-monitored film. Trainers released the canine critters from their marks — the small dogs were released last, so the larger dogs would not accidentally run them down. The vast majority of these animal actors were rescue dogs, and they had a tail-wagging blast running around on set and being given so much attention and praise.

About American Humane
Founded in 1877, the American Humane Association is the only national organization dedicated to protecting both children and animals. Through a network of child and animal protection agencies and individuals, American Humane develops policies, legislation, curricula and training programs to protect children and animals from abuse, neglect and exploitation. The nonprofit organization, headquartered in Denver, raises awareness about The Link® between violence to people and violence to animals, as well as the benefits derived from the human-animal bond. American Humane’s office in Los Angeles is the authority behind the “No Animals Were Harmed”® end-credit disclaimer on film and TV productions, and American Humane’s office in Washington, D.C., is an advocate for child and animal protection at the federal and state levels. The American Humane® Certified farm animal program is the nation’s original independent certification and labeling program for humanely raised food. American Humane meets the strong, comprehensive standards of the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance, has been awarded the Independent Charities of America’s “Best in America” Seal of Approval, has met the stringent standards for financial efficiency and accountability required by the American Institute of Philanthropy to qualify as a Top-Rated Charity, and has received a 3-star rating from Charity Navigator, America’s premier independent charity evaluator.

Buy the “Best Friends” blend of Silver Bean Coffee and $5 goes to animal rescue

Silver Bean Coffee Best Friends Blend

Shannon Bahrke is an Olympic bronze medal winner with a heart of gold when it comes to promoting good causes for our animal buddies. In addition to being a world-class skier, she’s also the co-founder of the Silver Bean Coffee Company and she’s using her Olympic fame to promote a great offer: Best Friends Animal Society gets $5 every time you buy a bag of her Best Friends Blend of coffee! You get delish, 100% free trade coffee and the critters get some fiscal love. So order here and drink up!

Coffee Purchasing Ideas:

  • Keep extra bags in your glove compartment for bribing the police officer who thought you didn’t stop at that red light.
  • Nothing says “Happy St. Patrick’s Day” like some Best Friends blend all Irished up
  • Buy some for an ADHD kid – it’s way cheaper than Ritalin
  • Buy a few bags for the officemates – and reference the “Irishing up” comment above
  • Share them with the staff of your local animal shelter – no Irish for them, they’ve got real jobs to do.
  • Give them as teacher appreciation gifts – the end of the school year is just around the corner and have you ever seen a teacher without a steamin’ cup of  joe?
  • Get a few dozen bags to take to AA meetings
  • If you’re planning on enjoying the Oscars, you’ll be needing caffeine.  And a bit o’ the Irish.
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