A couple of weeks ago there was a video casting call for dogs (and their owners) at the Shaw Dog Park on 11th Street NW. A number of doggies showed up with their owners to be photographed and show their best profiles to the casting crew at the site. The finished video will be made available to animal rescue organizations to help them raise awareness and donations for pets in shelters.
We spoke to Robert Lawrentz, the creator of the video project (aka Robert Miranda, his stage name) who will sing “Addie’s Song” in the video about a “mutt” dog he rescued and adopted. The video project is geared to help various rescues and animal outreach programs along with the Washington Humane Society. Proceeds from the song will go toward animal rescue efforts, including the Washington Humane Society.
Borderstan: You are releasing “Addie’s Song.” Can you tell us a little bit about what that involves? Proceeds will benefit the DC Human Society, correct?
Lawrentz: I am currently in the studio with my Music Producer Nate Jolley (Ready:Set:Impact) recording and producing my first CD, the Miranda Project. We are working to have Addie’s song released on the various Animal Rescue sites in order to promote the song/video. Jeannie “Kitty of the City” Jones is directing it and it will be included on the CD also. Proceeds of “Addie’s Song” will be donated to the various Rescue organization(s). My team and I are talking with various rescues and animal outreach programs that the song will benefit along with the Washington Humane Society.
Borderstan: Do you sing and play guitar as a hobby or semi-professionally? Did you ever work as full-time performer?
Lawrentz: I started playing guitar at age 8 and played my way semi-professionally thorough college — and after a long detour in High Tech sales & business development I have finally decided that the time was right to pursue my real passion — music. I am a late bloomer as they say.
Borderstan: I believe you said you had a stage name, “Miranda?”
Lawrentz: My mother’s family emigrated from Italy, but was originally from Spain. Like all immigrants their name was altered on arrival at Ellis Island. I decided to honor my family heritage by using the original family name for this project — Robert Miranda.
Borderstan: How did you come up with the idea of writing “Addie’s Song?”
Lawrentz: We adopted our rescue dog, Atticus, about 1½-years ago. He clearly had been very abused and has a severe case of PTSD [Post Traumatic Stress Disorder] — even after 1½-years of love and care. I often wondered who abused him… what did they do to him… how could I ever know… and most importantly what can I do to help him. “Addie’s Song” comes from my efforts to understand and help him.
Borderstan: What can you tell us about Addie?
Lawrentz: He’s a mutt – we’re guessing American Fox Hound, Lab, and Shepherd. He came out of a high kill shelter near Richmond, VA. We volunteered to foster him after a friend sent us his picture from the rescue website. He came to us completely feral — he didn’t even know how to climb stairs! We always wondered why they placed this dog into an inner city home with no kids and no yard.
The funny answer to that question is while recently looking back at the original website photos my wife, Joan, and I made the startling discovery — that our Atticus was the wrong dog! While he bears much similarity to the original web photos, he clearly is a different dog. We love him all the same, but of course are trying to find out what happened to the original dog we “thought” we were getting.
The Shaw Dogs monthly meeting scheduled for Wednesday, May 19, has been rescheduled to May 26 at 7 pm at Hotel Helix. The main item on the agenda is finalization of the bylaws of the proposed 501(c)(3) for Shaw Dogs. The group’s meetings are open to the public. Shaw dogs takes care of the Shaw Dog Park on 11th Street NW (between Rhode Island and R).
Hooray! The enclosed dog park–with lights soon to come–opened several days ago at 11th and R Streets NW. The entrance is on 11th Street south of R on the east side of the street. The park is adjacent to Shaw Junior High School. For now, the hours seem to be from around 7 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.; the park will remain open until around 10 p.m. (I believe) once lights are installed.
I took our dog there last night. The park is nice, with about 75% covered with pea gravel and about 25% with mulch. It took our dog a little bit to get used to the rocks, but she soon adjusted.