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ADOPTED! Brilliant Black Lab Charley

Charley is such a special dog!  He is an absolute delight for our volunteer dog walkers, who report that he's not only affectionate, eager to please and polite, but an incredibly quick learner and motivated student. He has been taught "sit," "down," "shake" and is starting to explore the agility equipment in WHS' outdoor play yard.  In no time at all, Charley will be performing parlor tricks with his new best friend - you!  At only 6-months-old, Charley looks forward to a lifetime of love and learning.  Bring the whole family down to meet this special dog (who also LOVES belly rubs, by the way).  See him at

Notes for Saint Patty's Day

While parades, corned beef and cabbage, and lucky four leafed clovers are what typically come to mind this time of year, St.  Patrick's Day celebrations would not be complete without delicious stout beer. 

That said, there are many stouts available that you may have not yet tried.  On or before Tuesday, the 17th is a great opportunity to broaden your horizons and try something new and unique.

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Bath Towels Needed for Dozer's Pals

Doing some spring cleaning? The Wisconsin Humane Society depends solely on donations from the community for all our programs and right now, we are in need of bath towels!  Even if you can't adopt, volunteer or donate money, there are items on the WHS Wishlist that might be just taking up space at home.  Drop them off during our shelter hours: Monday-Friday: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., or Sunday: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.  On behalf of the animals, thank you!!!

ps... Dozer is looking for a new home. Learn more about this super smart 1-year-old yellow Labrador Retriever mix.

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Hoppin' Himalayan Bunny

This cute bunny hasn’t begun meowing quite yet, but Snowflake is definitely enjoying her new suite in the Royal Cat Hotel at the Wisconsin Humane Society, helping to draw attention to the many rabbits looking for new homes right now.  A 2-year-old Himalayan mix, Snowflake is super soft and has beautiful, distinctive markings.  She LOVES her new digs in the Royal Cat Hotel and approaches visitors with curiosity and courage. Like all the rabbits at WHS, she’s been spayed and microchipped, and she goes home with a certificate for a free veterinary exam.  Snowflake will continue to attract attention in her swanky place until she finds herself queen of a new castle.  Check out to see all the great rabbits looking for new homes this spring!

Recession Is the Mother of Invention

By Jill Gilbert Welytok, Registered Patent Attorney

Upcoming Inventors and Entrepreneurs Club Meetings:

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Rams won't be back in Mequon this summer

The St. Louis Rams said they had a great time last summer training at Concordia University of Wisconsin in Mequon.

But the team won't be back this summer in Mequon.

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Shelter Dog Joins MPD!

The Wisconsin Humane Society is thrilled to announce the acceptance of one of the shelter dogs into the Milwaukee Police Department’s Vice Control Division's Drug Detection Canine Program. Dozer, a 1-year-old yellow Labrador Retriever, was chosen for training after passing aptitude and medical tests.
Detective Glen Bishop recently contacted Natalie Zielinski, WHS behavior manager, about his quest to find a dog to work in law enforcement. A rather exuberant, intelligent canine came to Zielinski’s attention and she suspected that the lab might excel in police work. Curious, confident, highly motivated and eager to learn, this smart dog fit the ideal profile.
“We have assisted the police department in finding good matches for their program in the past,” Zielinski said. “For the right dog, this opportunity is ideal. I can’t imagine a better placement for a dog like Dozer, who really needs a job, in addition to a loving guardian.  We’re so excited for him.”
Like all dogs available for adoption at the Wisconsin Humane Society, Dozer was neutered, microchipped, vaccinated and tested for heartworm disease.

Low-angle shots provide unique perspective

Basketball season is over and I’ve had a few days to look back on the photos I made in the last couple of months and it occurred to me that a couple of people have asked about the low-angle photos that have appeared in our papers.

It’s always a challenge to find a new angle to and different perspective, and this is just one more option I’ve come up with (actually, I stole the idea from a Sports Illustrated photographer) to provide a different look at a basketball game.

No, I don’t lay on the floor and look through the camera viewfinder waiting for a break away slam-dunk to gat these photos. I tape a piece of plastic (a colleague uses two burned out AA batteries for the same effect) under the bottom edge of an extra camera with a wide angle lens. I use a 16-35mm zoom, so that when the camera sits on the floor it points up at a 45 degree angle. Then I pre-focus the camera where I think the action while occur under the basket and set the camera's exposure manually.

Without moving my “floor camera," I sit next to it with another camera shooting the game the way I always do with a 70-200mm zoom and when there’s a breakaway or what I hope will be a large group of players leaping for the basket, all I have to do is reach down and press the shutter button on the camera sitting on the floor next to me….and hope for the best.

"Hope" is the key word as these are not high percentage pictures and I’m lucky to get one good photo per game, but it’s a different perspective showing picture that gives me another option at a story telling photo.

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Observing some of the events of the past several weeks brought to mind some random thoughts on unconnected issues. So here goes: :: While I share the opinion of Bernie Madoff as a knave, thief and general scam artist, I find it difficult to work up much sympathy for his victims. Most of them were victims of their own greed – accepting annual returns of 12 - 15% through ups and downs, returns unequaled by any other investment; failing to do due diligence by accepting an unknown accounting firm to do annual audits; and failing to accept the basic investment principles of diversification.


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Kids Photo, Art, Poetry Contest Announced!

Be Kind to Animals Submissions Be Kind to Animals Week, which falls May 3rd through 9th this year, is the oldest celebrated week in the nation! The Wisconsin Humane Society is sponsoring events in celebration of Be Kind to Animals Week. Children in Kindergarten through 6th grade are invited to enter the Poster, Poetry and Photography Contests. The public is also invited to nominate special individuals whom they think deserve recognition for helping animals and showing compassion.

Awards include: Humane Hero Award, Animal Hero Award, Kindness Awards and the Humane Education Teacher of the Year. Award winners will be honored at a special recognition ceremony on Sunday, May 3rd at the Wisconsin Humane Society. This year’s theme, Share the World, reminds us all that we need to do what we can to maintain a world that will sustain animals of all kinds. The deadline for all entries is Wednesday, April 8, 2009. For more information on entering the contests or nominating someone for an award, click here.


4 on the Floor - No Jumping!  
Do you have an exuberant dog that just can’t seem to say “hello” without jumping all over you and your guests? Come to the Wisconsin Humane Society on Saturday, March 28, 2009 from 0:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. for this one-hour workshop with your dog.  They will work on teaching your dog to politely greet you with all four paws on the floor by using positive techniques and reward-based training. This class is for dogs that are 5 months of age or older and their guardians. There is a $20.00 fee and a limit of 8 dogs for this workshop so register now at  

Keep 4 on the Floor - no jumping!

4 on the Floor - No Jumping!
Does your dog think her name is "Down!"???  Does Spot greet visitors with two paws to the chest?  Come to the Wisconsin Humane Society on Saturday, March 28, 2009 from 10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. for this one-hour workshop with your dog.  They will work on teaching your dog to politely greet you with all four paws on the floor by using positive techniques and reward-based training. This class is for dogs that are 5 months of age or older and their guardians.

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The King of Spices

Guess what spice is considered the king of all spices? It is "Black Pepper".  According to the history of spices, black pepper was a highly valued spice in Europe, and in 1498 Vasco da Gama, a Portuguese explorer, went on a long sea-voyage to India primarily in search of pepper! Until he discovered a sea route to India, the spice was brought to Europe by land through Arab traders who kept the land route a secret. In the 15th century, the West valued pepper as much as gold. Demand was huge and the supply was short. Today pepper is freely available around the world and is almost used in every cuisine. It is rightly known as the "king of spices". 

India was ruled by the British for more than 200 years. In 1947, India became independent. When British ruled India, according to a popular story, a chef from the state of  Tamil Nadu, served an Englishman a soup of lentils with garlic, ginger and black pepper. When the Englishman asked for the name of the soup, the chef replied,  “Molagu Thanni”, which means literally, pepper water (known as rasam)  in Tamil. “Splendid” remarked the Englishman. Let us have “Mulligatawny” more often, shall we? And a legend of the Mulligatawny soup was born. Even today, it is served as a soup in many Indian restaurants in England.

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Delta Kappa Gamma Literary Contest Winners Announced

Lumen Christi Catholic School students recently participated in the Delta Kappa Gamma Literary Contest. Congratulations to the following students who placed in the contest:

Maggie Hannigan - 1st Place

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Director Victoria Wellens Loses Battle with Cancer

The Wisconsin Humane Society is deeply saddened to announce that Victoria Wellens, the Executive Director of the Wisconsin Humane Society, lost her battle with cancer early this morning. The Wisconsin Humane Society is deeply saddened to announce that Victoria Wellens, the Executive Director of the Wisconsin Humane Society, lost her battle with cancer early Saturday morning, the 28th of March, 2009. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Victoria’s husband, Jim, her stepchildren, Aaron and Elizabeth and grandchildren, Morgan, Mia and Mya. Victoria was an amazing human being and her commitment and dedication to the Wisconsin Humane Society and the animal welfare field was unparalleled.  For 15 years, her outstanding leadership transformed the humane society into a beacon of hope for not only homeless animals, but for people who strive to make the world a kinder place for animals.  She set the highest standards for animal care and was nationally recognized for her valiant efforts and remarkable leadership.When Victoria came to WHS in 1994, the shelter was literally sinking into the ground and staff members were desperate for better resources.  In just five years, thanks to her brilliant efforts, Milwaukee boasted one of the best shelters in the country, a place where animals receive excellent care in a nurturing and loving environment.   Victoria pioneered so many innovative programs. Education was a cornerstone of her vision, ensuring that compassion and respect for animals would endure in future generations. The wildlife department moved out of the dark basement at the old facility and into an illuminated, spacious center that annually treats more than 5,000 wild animals. Victoria ardently fought to end the suffering of dogs in puppy mills and continued to campaign for the welfare of feral cats in our community until her last days. She was determined to expand the same amazing programs and services offered at WHS into Ozaukee County, laying plans for a state-of-the-art facility that will better serve the needs of animals and citizens in Ozaukee County. Armed with the knowledge of her vision for the future, we hope to see these dreams realized in her honor. “Words cannot express how much we will miss Victoria’s presence, leadership and vision,” said board president Tony Enea. “Her impact on animals’ lives cannot be measured. We are fortunate that she left us with an incredibly strong management team and structure and her legacy will serve as a foundation for the continued growth and outstanding efforts of the Wisconsin Humane Society to save lives.”

Click here for the full announcement.

Breaking the rules

I hate rules and break them every chance I get. One of the things young photographers learn when photographing outside is to always have the sun to their backs and on the front of their subjects. Not a bad rule, but again, I hate rules.

This past week I was covering a girls soccer game late in the day between Menomonee Falls and Whitnall. I started to photograph on the west side of the field with the sun to my back and directly on the players. It was what photographers call "nice light". Directional and golden-reddish sunlight that happens as sunset nears on a clear - and in this case - cold, day. I made photos of the game for a while until I was sure I had something that I was happy with and then walked to the other side of the field looking into the setting sun.

With a 50-foot walk, the same field looked different. Sun shown through the girls' hair and rim lit them with almost a halo around their shoulders. Two photos made during the second half of the same game, but looking different. Sometimes breaking the rules is fun.

This was taken front lit with the sun to my back.

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Notes for April

Hopefully Saturday's snow was the last of the winter season so that we can move on to Spring.  I want to mention a new beer from Leinenkugel's that was introduced in March.  It is their newest year round style-Classic Amber.  It is an all-malt amber lager.  It is brewed with Pale,Munich and firekilned Caramel 60 malts and balacned by a citrus hop complexity.  Some food pairings to try with this new beer are venison, veal tenderloin, a grilled porterhouse steak or a sharp cheddar cheeseburger.  I encourage you to try the new Classic Amber from Leinenkugel's and let me know what food pairings that you come up with for this beer.


Memorial Service for Victoria

Victoria Wellens Memorial Service

The Wisconsin Humane Society is hosting a public Memorial Service to celebrate the life of this remarkable leader and friend on Monday, April 13, 2009 at the Pfister Hotel, 424 E Wisconsin Ave., Milwaukee, (414) 273-8222. Doors open at 5:00 p.m. and the service will begin promptly at 6:00 p.m. A special block of rooms has been set aside for out-of-town guests; please contact the Pfister for reservations. Special thanks to Marcus Hotels and Resorts and the Pfister Hotel, who have graciously donated the space for the memorial service. Learn more about Victoria's life and accomplishments.

In honor of the work that Victoria Wellens did for the Wisconsin Humane Society, The Pfister Hotel would like to donate 10% of revenue on Monday, April 13 from 7:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. to the humane society. 10% of all revenues from Café at the Pfister, Mason Street Grill, Blu or the Lobby Lounge will be donated back to the Wisconsin Humane Society in Victoria’s name. Reservations are strongly recommended.

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