Mindy Norton

Host: Speaking of Pets

Mindy Norton has been “Speaking of Pets” on Alabama Public Radio since 1995.

She grew up in Birmingham, Alabama and graduated from UAB. She got her first real pet at the age of 9 when her family adopted a mixed Boston Terrier pup they named “Scamp”. As an adult, a friend invited her to help with a humane society event, and that was the beginning of her involvement with group efforts to help animals. Since then, she has been on the boards of directors of three animal welfare organizations, serving as president of two of them.

For seven years, Mindy wrote and recorded a weekday spot called “Pet Patrol” for Birmingham’s WBHM Public Radio, for which she won an Obelisk Award in 1979. After she and her husband (and three cats) moved to Tuscaloosa, she talked the station manager at the time into giving her two minutes every Saturday morning to talk about pets and pet care.

Since 2006, “Speaking of Pets” has been available as a podcast, consistently one of APR’s most popular offerings. (In fact, staff members have referred to her as the “podcast queen”!) That’s no surprise to Mindy who believes the reason for its popularity is the subject matter. “After all,” she says, “I get to talk about our best friends every week!”

Her APR spot about the link between animal abuse and cruelty toward humans has been featured on the American Humane Association’s website.  As a volunteer, Mindy feels she is so blessed to have a soap box with a microphone in front of it – plus, she gets to help two causes at the same time, animal welfare and Alabama Public Radio.

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat December 13, 2014

Home for the Holidays - Pet-Style

Ahhh, now this is home for the holidays!
Credit kvanhorn (Kyle Van Horn) [Flickr]

A pet can be one of the best gifts, but it should never be a surprise.  In fact, it's a good idea to have the whole family involved in deciding to adopt a new best friend, and then in choosing the pet.  Visit your local shelter or rescue group today - you might make this Christmas bright for one lucky animal!

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat December 6, 2014

Traveling During the Holidays

Waiting for the sitter to come by for a visit
Credit Oleg [Flickr]

If you can't take your pet along on your holiday vacation, consider either boarding it or finding a pet sitter.  Choose carefully, because you want your best friend to be safe and happy while you are away.

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat November 29, 2014

12 Ways to Keep Pet Safe at Christmas

You can keep us safe this Christmas!
Credit JOE-3PO (Joseph Vasquez) [Flickr] / Joseph Vasquez Photography

Christmas decorations really add to the festive celebration of the season, but they can become hazards to the well-being of our animal companions.  So go ahead and deck the halls, but keep your pet's safety in mind.

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat November 22, 2014

Thanksgiving and Our Pets

Are you gonna eat all that?
Credit Eric T. Morris [Flickr]

It might be tempting to include your best friend when you sit down to the table this Thanksgiving, but some things on your plate could harm your furry buddy.  Be careful and choose treats that are pet-friendly and will make you both thankful for tasty morsels and great companionship!

Audio Pending...

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat November 15, 2014

Static Electricity and Your Pet

Petting me now could shock both of us!
Credit Kristin (Kerotab) [Flickr}

When the humidity level in your home drops to 30% or lower, static electricity can make you and your furry friend uncomfortable.  In fact, just stroking your pet's fur could result in a little shock for both of you.  Bathing your pet with moisturizing shampoo (one approved for use on pets) and increasing the moisture in the air can help remedy the problem.

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat November 8, 2014

National Animal Shelter and Rescue Appreciation Week 2014

Shelter animals do not need pity - they need good forever homes!
Credit Tuscaloosa Metro Animal Shelter [FaceBook]

Animal shelter workers and rescue volunteers are the unsung heroes of the pet world, because without them many animals would never have the chance to find a new home.  This week is National Animal Shelter and Rescue Appreciation Week, but thankfully these dedicated folks are helping our four-footed friends all year long!

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat November 1, 2014

2014 American Hero Dog

Susie is top dog for 2014!
Credit American Humane Association [Facebook]

Everybody loves a Cinderella story, and that's exactly what this is - a puppy so badly beaten that she should not be alive, who grew up to become a friendly loving therapy dog bringing hope and inspiration to all she meets!

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat October 25, 2014

Halloween and Pets 2014

Cute costume - I hope the dog's name is Cookie!
Credit istolethetv [Flickr]

What is it about Halloween that makes us want to dress ourselves and our four-footed companions in costumes?   Some pets love it, some don't mind too much and others can be totally stressed by Halloween.  It's up to you to make sure your best friend is safe and comfortable, whatever the holiday.

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat October 18, 2014

Adopt a Faithful Friend

Adopt one of my friends and you'll get kisses every day!
Credit Katie@! (Katie Brady) [Flickr]

There are lots of good reasons for adopting a dog, especially during October, which is Adopt-a-Dog Month.  There are also lots of good reasons for supporting Alabama Public Radio - and surprisingly the reasons are very similar.  Either way you get a faithful friend!

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat October 11, 2014

(Too) Playful Dog

Poodles can be high-energy dogs.
Credit Greg Westfall [Flickr]

One of the most common reasons given for surrendering a dog to an animal shelter is behavior problems.  Training a pet can make it a better companion and give it the best chance for a happy life in a forever home.

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat October 4, 2014

When a Pet Owner Dies

What will happen to your pet if something happens to you?
Credit NatalieMaynor [Flickr]

As responsible pet owners, we try to take good care of our pets, but if you're not there anymore who will look after your best friend?

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat September 27, 2014

Targeted T-N-R Works!

Feral cat is wary of humans.
Credit Nakae [Flickr]

Targeted Trap-Neuter-Return helps reduce and stabilize the feral cat population.

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Pets
10:10 am
Fri September 26, 2014

Dog Splash 2014

Dog Splash 2014
Credit University Recreation, University of Alabama

Dog Splash or Pooch Pool Party - whatever you call it, people and pets alike can have lots of fun.  Bring a toy, bring a life vest for your dog if needed, and have a great time with your best friend!

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat September 13, 2014

What's in a Name?

Rufus, relaxing at home
Credit Mindy Norton

We named our big red tabby "Rufus" because that means "red".  Plus, it sounded like a substantial name for what was definitely a substantial cat!

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Pets
8:45 am
Sat September 6, 2014

Friendliest Cities for Pets

This seems like a pretty friendly place!
Credit wheany (Jan-Erik Finnberg) [Flickr]

Where would you choose to live with your pet - small town or big city?  Wherever you go, you want your pet to be as happy there as you are!

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