Monday, July 28, 2014

I can FINALLY tell you all the news - I've been about ready to burst

The image that started it all, courtesy of Bri Hokanson

I have, right in front of me, the official MACC paperwork stating that the “Potentially Dangerous, Needs Training” designation has been rescinded. Nano is in the clear from the perspective of Minneapolis Animal Care & Control and the City of Minneapolis!

As you all know, this has been an emotional, difficult, and expensive journey for me. But, the support I’ve received has been amazing. Now that a major part of this situation has been sorted out on one major aspect of things, I do want to spend some time thanking the organizations and officials and major players who were involved.

Maybe this information will help someone out there – I certainly wouldn't wish this scenario on anyone else, but if I've learned anything from this it's that life can throw some very unexpected things your way. Please know there are resources, including me. Seriously, I'm willing to help anybody going through a similar situation if you need advice or ideas for working through things.

This was a group effort – to say the very least. Each person reading this played a huge part by making calls and donating to Nano’s legal fund. Your generosity and kindness more than made up for the negative parts of this experience. I can’t say you restored my faith in humanity, because I never lost it … but you sure did rejuvenate my belief that most people have good and generous hearts.

Let’s get to the thank yous – I encourage you to keep reading so you can get a sense of the massive scope of what each of you helped make happen.

First, let’s talk about Minneapolis Animal Care & Control. They are under new leadership and while I have no experience to compare the former leadership to the new, I will say I was very impressed with the new Deputy Director, Ms. Caroline Hairfield. She is the epitome of professionalism, compassion and integrity. You may not know it yet, but our city is lucky to have her. She and her staff treated me fairly and with respect from our first interaction. I hope this is okay with all the donors, but if there is any money left over in the legal fund after I pay my bill, I plan to donate it to MACC.

Plus, a friendly reminder – dogs, cats, rabbits and ferrets need to be licensed with the city. To my embarrassment, I did not know this. If you don’t know about this or haven’t bothered to license your pets, please check it out and then do it here.

The Minneapolis City Attorney’s office also played a role in this and I’d like to acknowledge the time and attention they gave this matter. Especially when I’m certain your plates are overflowing with other issues. Ladies and gentlemen, you have my sincere thanks.

The woman behind the scenes in all of this is the dog behaviorist Nano and I worked with, Carol Propotnik. If you are having behavior issues with your puppy or dog, get in touch with this woman. I mean it. She’s truly understands dog behavior and can help you deal with just about any issue you can think of – 612-869-6451. She is worth every penny plus more. She works within a dog’s nature to break habits, develop skills and set up realistic training goals. Working with her will enrich the relationship you have with your pet and make you a team working toward excellent doggy manners. Today, I can give Nano commands and he can control himself when he sees a squirrel. I never thought I’d see that day happen.

Of course, I want to thank my attorney, Mr. Marshall Tanick – he was always rational and realistic; plus, he talks really fast so he doesn't waste your funds on chit chat. He mostly does other kinds of legal work (employment, intellectual property, etc.) but he’s an animal lover, too, and has been working on animal rights cases for many years. I committed to following his advice during this process and he never steered me wrong. If you find yourself in a bind with your pet, he’s the best in the biz.

The residents in the building where I live were on this journey with me – whether they wanted to be or not. This is an exceptional group of people. I was fully supported by every person in the building, plus a few who don’t live here anymore (but used to). It would have been easy to be frustrated or upset with me, but instead we worked together to resolve our mail delivery issue.

Speaking of mail delivery, I have some words of thanks for the USPS – thank you for resuming our mail service ahead of schedule. It was a very nice way to celebrate Independence Day. As I said in an earlier post, we all went through some tough days during this experience, but ultimately, a reasonable solution was reached – for that you have the thanks of all 10 households in the building.

If I may be so bold, while recognizing I know very little about politics and how organizations can/can’t work together, I’d like to encourage the USPS to work with MACC. The two organizations deal with different aspects of the same issue: animals and safety. The USPS puts a lot of effort into dog bite prevention and they take it very seriously, and rightly so – mail carriers enter private property virtually every day and encounter our pets. MACC’s entire reason for existence is to address issues with animals when something goes wrong and to think of public safety – they know what to do, how to assess a situation, and recommend reasonable resolutions. In my marketing mind, this seems like a wonderful partnership opportunity.

I already thanked JonTevlin at the Star Tribune but I want to say thanks again. Mr. Tevlin broke the story and without him, I’m pretty sure we’d still be stuck in neutral.

KARE 11’s coverage came at just the right time and really helped get things moving toward a resolution – Mr. Constantini and Team, thank you for your visit and the great story. Nano is now recognized all over the city.  He’s become kind of an attention hog, to be honest. But, he’s getting more belly rubs than he’s ever gotten in his life – and I’m sure he would thank you for that if he could.

Senator Klobuchar’s, Senator Franken’s, and Representative Ellison’s offices all made calls to the USPS on my behalf – keep an eye open for thank you letters to the staffers who worked on my behalf. A big thank you to city councilwoman, Elizabeth Glidden, who called me and personally wrote a letter to the USPS on my behalf.

To two of the smartest women I know – the co-founders of Union Park Marketing, Patty Radford Henderson and Betsey Kershaw, your support and understanding means the world to me, and that is a serious understatement. I'm eternally and deeply grateful for both of you. A heartfelt thanks to Liz Elert, one of the most loyal and generous people I know. You three women are role models and friends to me and I’m a better person for it.

Last, but certainly not least, to my family, friends, acquaintances, new friends, complete strangers and neighbors – thank you so much for your encouragement, understanding, support and all the things each of you did to distract me, cheer me up, cheer me on. I hope I never have to do the same for any of you, but please know I will.

With gratitude –
Alicia and Nano


  1. I am very happy to hear this great news for you and Nano!

    I am also very happy about the new leadership at MACC.

    MACC really needs some help with their PR and marketing. Since that's your biz perhaps you could figure out a way to help them get their adoptable animals out into the public eye. That would free up their rescue partners to take the animals that really need rescue. Thanks!! Woof Woof!

    1. Hmm ... now that would an odd twist to this whole thing. MACC as a client?! Well, I have offered to do whatever I can to help them out, so maybe ...

    2. Please do it! It is one very big thing lacking from getting adoptable animals out the door. Minneapolis citizens don't even know they can walk right in and adopt a dog or cat!

      Now even "pit bull" or "power" breed types dogs are adoptable BUT they aren't getting adopted because no one knows they are available except a lot of rescue people and animal advocates (and we already have enough animal companions).

  2. Excellent post, and wonderful news!!! Congrats!

  3. you are just to fantastic to work. i really appreciate the way you are working here, dog food recipes

  4. The important and natural ways of medical courier services :-
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  5. Hmm... Those "charming" mailboxes have been obsolete for DECADES. Tacking some only slightly larger boxes to the wall underneath is a terrible solution. What you all need to do is use your spare time to lobby for the full size modern mailboxes you all deserve. See examples at:
    Contact the manufacturer - I'm sure they can set up whatever will fit in the space available. Get 11 boxes so one can be adapted for outgoing mail, or get the large box for out going separate for 175.
    Yes, the total cost of 500-700 sounds like a lot, but mention to the landlord that they haven't had to spend much on mailboxes since they got the building and the new boxes will last even longer than the old, and they can write it off on their taxes.
    Ten families must pay an awful lot of money each year, and they deserve to have secure boxes that all their mail can fit in without too much damage.
    Good luck with that campaign!
    I'm glad Nano and you and the neighbors are back in the groove.
    God bless the Mail Carriers - I hope the victim has recovered without too bad a scar.