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Featured Volunteers

MetroPets runs exclusively on the steam of our volunteers' time and energy and expertise. We are blessed with wonderfully talented people.
[read about our other featured volunteers]

This month, meet Lynne Bettinger, Pet First Aid Instructor and Canine Massage Therapist!

Lynne and Rusty
Lynne and Rusty

I spent 20 years in the telecommunications industry before leaving corporate life to spend more time with my dogs. At that time, I started Sundown Ridge, Ltd., to design and sell quality gift baskets for pets and pet lovers. The business has expanded to include all types of gift baskets and corporate gifts. About the same time I started the business, my husband and I got involved with cocker rescue. Working with the foster dogs got me interested in canine health so I became an American Red Cross pet first aid instructor. As a volunteer for Red Cross, I teach pet first aid classes (and human CPR/first aid classes,too), and have also trained other Red Cross instructors to teach pet first aid.

My company, Sundown Ridge, Ltd. is an authorized provider of American Red Cross pet first aid classes. That allows me to offer the class to groups (e.g., breed clubs, rescue groups, dog training clubs, pet sitting companies, etc.) around the Maryland/DC/ Northern Virginia area. Metropets, for example, has had me bring the class to several different locations in the past couple of years. I've spoken at all of MetroPets' Disaster Preparedness For People With Pets seminars on the benefits of learning pet first aid.

Another hat I wear is canine massage therapist and instructor. Massage therapy is very beneficial for dogs of all ages and abilities, helping geriatric dogs, working dogs (such as seeing eye dogs), competitive doges (show, agility, flyball), and dogs recovering from injury or surgery.

I love working with dogs and certainly enjoy my new career more than my old one!

My other volunteer work has included helping two cocker spaniel rescue groups: Cocker Spaniel Adoption Center rescue group and Oldies But Goodies; serving as a public member on Montgomery County's Animal Matters Hearing Board; and as a volunteer for the Montgomery County Police Department, I worked in the County's Animal Services Division and was named the Department's Volunteer of the Year in April, 2001. Though I'm no longer an active volunteer in ASD, today I serve on the ASD Director's Advisory Committee.

Buddy, Tyler, Camden, Marty, and Rusty

I'm happy I can assist MetroPets as volunteer. They provide a great service to the animal community, and their website has a wealth of information available. I frequently refer people there to find anything from dog trainers to information on feral cats. Marty (elderly Cocker) and I participated in Pets in Pearls, and last year I helped make dozens of dog-shaped chocolate lollipops which were given to human participants at Metropets' annual holiday party.

We have 6 cocker spaniels: Buddy, Tyler, Camden, Marty, Rusty, and Albear. They range in age from 8 years to around 16 years old. I adopted Buddy from MCHS. Camden, Marty, Rusty, and Albear were all adopted from the Cocker Spaniel Adoption Center rescue group.

Please check our web site for more stories about our volunteers. If you are a volunteer and would like to submit your story, please write to!
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