The Record-Review – The official newspaper of Bedford and Pound Ridge, New York


A beauty benefit to save precious dogs


Tara DiLuna holding Beckham; Susan Trumpbour; Susan Cava holding Benjamin Button; and Katherine Good with Winnie Cooper at Pawfection Pet Grooming for a fundraiser for Rescuzilla.


On Monday, Jan. 23, the pet grooming boutique Pawfection, in cooperation with MyBeautyBerry and Sabria’s Brows, hosted a benefit for Rescuzilla, a pet rescue organization based in New York City. Dozens of women flooded into the salon to enjoy shopping for an incredible selection of beauty products, all offered at steeply discounted prices below retail, with all beauty items donated by MyBeautyBerry, a beauty tips and advice site. Many also elected to have their eyebrows shaped and sculpted, with proceeds of the day going to pet rescue.

The grooming salon, which is normally closed on Mondays, changed up their regular grooming space to create a display area for beauty and grooming products donated by Susan Trumpbour, founder and COO of  HYPERLINK "" The products included items from Revlon, Aveeno, Noxzema, Garnier, Neutrogena, Vichy, Olay, Eucerin, Mystic Tan, Burt’s Bees, Sally Hansen, Redken, Aveda, Tresemme, Clinique, Almay, Maybelline, Lancome, L’Oreal, Julie Hewett, Nars and Elizabeth Arden. Pawfection is owned and operated by Tara Santorelli DiLuna, who in addition to grooming cats and dogs often does her own personal brand of pet rescue. An 8-month-old Yorkshire terrier she calls Beckham rescued from a hoarding situation required luxating patella surgeries for two knees or the pup would be permanently lame. Ms. Santorelli-DiLuna, who paid out of pocket for the dog’s surgery, was holding a raffle and raising funds to help cover Beckham’s medical expenses. In the back room where Pawfection’s clients are normally bathed and blow dried, eyebrow expert Sabria worked her magic, armed with tweezers and eyebrow pencils.

On hand at the event in addition to tiny Beckham who, post-surgery, napped in a crate, were two dogs available for adoption by Rescuzilla, Winnie Cooper and Benjamin Button. Winnie is a 1-year-old American Staffordshire terrier rescued from a kill shelter in New York City. Winnie is gregarious and friendly and loves other dogs, children, even cats. He is currently being fostered in Manhattan by Katherine Good, who works with Rescuzilla founder Susan Cava to save and re-home pit bulls and other pets. In addition to her day job, Ms. Good volunteers at Animal Care & Control in Manhattan on weekends, where she walks dogs and cleans cages and helps Ms. Cava select dogs the pair believe have the best chance for a new life. Many of the dogs they rescue are already on what is known as “the euth list,” which means they are scheduled to be euthanized the next day. Because of the teeming population of unwanted, lost and abandoned animals the shelter must process, the average time a dog or cat gets to stay before humane execution is approximately three days.

“I live near the South Street Seaport, and I walk Winnie there every day,” Ms. Good said while Winnie demonstrated his excellent manners in exchange for pats and treats. “I take him to the dog park. He’s a young dog but very sweet and bright. He just loves everyone,” she said.

Benjamin Button is either a large Chihuahua or a miniature greyhound or whippet mix. Benjamin is approximately 12 years old and was tragically abandoned in New York City, where he was found tied to a fence. He was brought to a kill shelter, where Ms. Cava selected him to get another chance.

“He was a dog who had no other chance,” Ms. Cava said. Benjamin is very sweet and docile and just needs a friendly lap. He would make a good companion for an older person. He is friendly to other animals and all people. Because of his size and age, Benjamin requires minimal exercise, and would do best in a quiet home, possibly with other older pets. He has plenty of love to give, and with proper care may even seem to “grow younger,” hence the optimistic moniker Benjamin Button (from the movie, starring Tom Hanks). 

This is the third year Pawfection has hosted this event. “It’s a fun thing to do, and it gives a dog like Benjamin a chance to meet a new crowd,” Rescuzilla’s founder Susan Cava said. The money raised will go vet bills and other expenses incurred through fostering.

“Just to let you know, having Benjamin’s teeth worked on was $340, and Katherine has to pay a dog walker $300 a month to help out with Winnie because she has a daytime job,” Ms. Cava said. “If you decide to foster a dog until we can find it a forever home, Rescuzilla pays for all that animal’s food and veterinary bills.” Rescuzilla, which has a lively presence on Facebook, also has an Amazon wish list interested donors can consult if they want to help out.

Although so far Rescuzilla has found homes for its many pets primarily in Manhattan and the boroughs, Ms. Cava has far from given up on finding new families both to foster and adopt in northern Westchester, where she herself grew up.

“There are more resources here,” Ms. Cava said. “More land. The larger dogs I am rescuing have a better chance I think in the suburbs. Many of the people living here have fenced-in yards and are more open to large, energetic pets.”

Two and a half months, Ms. Good said, is the average time a dog is fostered before it finds a forever home.

Jason Trumpbour, Susan Trumpbour’s son, had a presence at the Rescuzilla event. Jason, a former BVES student, is working on a community service project for his religious school and FLMS project. He is asking the community to help with his collection of donated items. For the dogs, he is collecting new Dingo chew toys, Busy Buddy toys, bedding, including used towels, bath mats and sheets, as well as dog beds, cat beds, new or used, and all varieties and brands of dog treats.

Rescuzilla is a 501(c)(3) Animal Rescue of NYC organization that works via Animal Care & Control to rescue, rehabilitate and re-home dogs from New York City’s overcrowded and underfunded shelter system. Ninety percent of the dogs they rescue are pit bulls, not just because that is the breed most in need,  but because Ms. Cava and her associate Ms. Good love and adore this misunderstood breed. 

“We are selective about what dogs come into our group, and try and focus on those who would be otherwise overlooked and consequently face euthanasia,” Ms. Cava said. For more information about fostering for Rescuzilla or to adopt Benjamin Button or Winnie, log on to  HYPERLINK ""

And for more information about Beckham the adorable Yorkie, contact Ms. DiLuna at 242-8422.

Read more local coverage of your hometown in this week’s issue of the The Record-Review. Newsstand copies are available at several locations listed above, or subscribe today for convenient home delivery.


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FEBRUARY 3, 2012