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Green Dog of the Year Contest Gallery 12

Feb. 2, 2010, 12:03 p.m.
Irene, retriever/shepherd mix

Photo: Christine Douaire

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Irene, retriever/shepherd mix

Irene has helped our family go "greener" by just being herself. Instead of using the car, we go for long walks, we swim and play, and if she has a poop, I don't use bags, I pick it up with a cat scoop and put it into a plastic container, take it home where it goes onto a pile which in the summer gets used for fertilizer. I don't need any exercise machines with her around, we play "Mommy go fetch" where she'll bring me a toy, waits for me to bend down to get it, then grabs it, runs a few feet, then repeats this around 4-5 times, then I get it, throw it and we start again. Irene cleans the dishes better than a dishwasher and without chemicals, not only does she warm our bed, she also warms our hearts.