Animal Magnetism 7

Area personalities love their furry friends.

“With a name like mine I’m practically obligated to have pets,” says Doug Petcash, co-anchor of Today’s Morning News on KTVB. Petcash has three cats: Lily, Daizy (litter mates, domestic short-hair) and Thistle (domestic long-hair).

“My wife Tonia and I adopted Lily and Daizy from an animal shelter in northern Michigan in 2005. Thistle adopted us about a year later. ”

Over the years Petcash has discovered a few of his pets’ pet peeves.

“Lily hates loud noises and sometimes freaks out if she gets scared,” explains Petcash. “Daizy hates the vacuum cleaner. Thistle hates an empty food dish.”

“When I was a little girl I wanted a cat more than anything else in the world, but my parents were really anti-any pet with fur,” shares Michelle Heart, Morning Show Co-Host at 103.5 KISS FM. In October 2011, one of the other DJs gave her Dakota, a male American long hawir/Persian mix eight week old kitten.

Heart’s favorite activity with Dakota involves relaxation.

“I watch TV and movies with him,” says Heart. “Does this make me the crazy cat lady? I think Frozen has been his favorite.”

Dakota has a pet peeve that involves the ever important supper dish.

“I wake up at 3:30 a.m. to do the morning show on 103.5 KISS FM, so Dakota’s used to getting fed as I’m heading out the door,” Heart explains. “Weekends? Different story. I want to sleep in, but he’ll walk in my bathroom and kick everything off the counter until I hear it and wake up to feed him.”

Heart acknowledges her love for her kitty.

“He is the best cuddle buddy in the world. That cat has a sixth sense for when I’m bummed out and will curl up with me if I lay down anywhere. He gives great kitty versions of hugs!”

Jim Reynolds has been mayor of Eagle, Idaho, since October 2010. He met his two standard poodles Beaux (black) and Baleigh (apricot) in 2006 through a breeder in North Georgia.

“Baleigh loves to fetch the ball endlessly, preferring my wife, Joanie to throw it,” says Reynolds. “Beaux is the quieter of the two who tires of playing fetch other than occasionally getting into the game to steal it away from Baleigh. Beaux’s job is sentry. She watches for intruders–the squirrel at the bird feeder, people walking their dogs down the street, and the yard men.” What Reynolds loves most about his dogs are “their loving and calm personalities and their love of people.”

Boise Councilman Ben Quintana’s strongest supporters include his wife Christine and two German Shepherd mixes Charlie and Tucker. Charlie turned 12 years old last May and Tucker will turn six in November. Quintana still vividly remembers how much training and physical activity Charlie required from the moment Christine brought Charlie home with her after adopting him 11 years ago from the Idaho Humane Society.

“Several years later we decided Charlie needed a friend. As luck would have it, we received an email from the Idaho Humane Society about a German Shepherd mix puppy. Tucker was only 14-16 weeks old and was as cute as could be. When we brought him home, Charlie didn’t know what to make of him, but Tucker was in awe of his magnificently cool big brother who could catch Frisbees, jump in the back of the SUV, and eat mounds of food in a matter of seconds. Today, they are the best of friends.” Charlie and Tucker love exploring new off-leash trails but are just as comfortable indoors. “They absolutely melt when we sit with them on the living room rug and hang out together as a family.”

“Charlie’s biggest pet peeve is how Tucker bites his ears, neck and back legs when he gets excited,” shares Quintana. “Tucker’s pet peeve is being left behind. If Christine tries to take Charlie for a walk without him, Tucker will bark and whine so loud over this small injustice that you will have no choice but to take him too.”

“When all is quiet and they are lounging on their dog beds, we simply say ‘do a little one’ and they will both begin to howl quietly then gradually increase their pitch and pace. I can only imagine what that must sound like from outside our house,” laughs Quintana.

“Our favorite memory of Charlie was his first ocean experience on the Oregon Coast,” says Quintana. “Our favorite memory of Tucker is also close to our worst memory of him. As a puppy, he was a terror. One time we came home to find he had chewed half a roll of stamps and spread the sticky pieces all over his body and our living room. He also grabbed an ink pen and somehow must have held it in his mouth, while parading around the living room and marking the wall like he was competing in the Olympics as a ribbon-happy rhythmic gymnast. When we came home you would have thought it was Charlie who destroyed the house and decided to coat Tucker in ink and stamps — Charlie was in full ‘blink mode,’ while Tucker just smiled and tried to look innocent. Tucker was a complete mess, but he was absolutely adorable. Christine and I thought, ‘Nice try, Tucker, but this one is a no brainer.’”

Marcia Franklin, producer/host at Idaho Public Television, says her pet adventure began in a classic way.

“It all started with a ‘How much is that doggie in the window?’ moment. Except it wasn’t a dog; it was a cat,” shares Franklin. “I was adopted by a very regal-looking tabby cat who was lounging in a cage in a pet store.

“My knowledge of cats was so limited that a friend had to help me buy the necessary items for him. And that first night, I became alarmed at his breathing. Turns out he just had a loud purr!  Eighteen years later, when I had to say a tearful goodbye to my beloved Cricket, I definitely fell into the cat-egory of ‘cat person.’ I was overwhelmed with grief. Because of that, I didn’t want another cat. But a little over a year later, I saw a thin, tuxedo cat in a cold parking lot. I got out of the car and it ran towards me. She had no collar, so I took her home. I named her Nini.

“A few months later, it seemed like Nini needed a companion, so I adopted a kitten, a little gray whom I named Stuart. Stuart came home very ill, but even then, I could see a mischievous spirit that reminded me of Cricket.

“If you have a problem with a cat, try to find out who owns it, and talk to that person,” Franklin advises. “If it’s feral, find a rescue group to trap it, and have it spayed or neutered. Don’t hurt or kill cats. My cats live indoors, but not every cat can be an indoor cat, especially if they’ve already lived outside. I tried keeping Cricket indoors and he went nuts, howling and scratching. Once outside, he became calm. Most cats are loving if you get to know them and meet them on their own terms. That’s what makes them so interesting and unique, and perhaps serves as a lesson when we encounter humans as well.”