Amazing Stories: Risk Takers and Innovators


Harnessing their creativity, technology skills, and entrepreneurship, the tenacious individuals featured in these stories have realized their dreams and, in many cases, developed their innovation into a viable business venture. From the first glimmer of an idea to the fruition of the invention, these great Canadian discoveries are an inspiration to aspiring inventors and entrepreneurs everywhere.

  • ISBN: 9781551539744
  • Author: Sandra Phinney
  • Pages: 144
  • Ages: 12+, Adult
SKU: 9781551539744 Category: Tag:


Great Canadian business ventures since 1950 


The terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City on September 11, 2001, are permanently etched in the minds of hundreds of millions of people around the world.

For Marianne Bertrand of Toronto, the day following the disaster is also a day she’ll never forget. Around 10 a.m. on September 12, she received a phone call from the New York City Police Department. The NYPD had rescue dogs combing the Trade Center site, looking for survivors. But the broken glass and hot debris blanketing the site made it difficult for the dogs to do their job. The call went out to Bertrand, who ran a company in Toronto making Muttluks – durable, fitted, dog booties that she had invented in the early 1990s and turned into a thriving, one-of-a-kind business. Bertrand responded to the call immediately, donating 80 pairs of Muttluks to the Canine Unit.

Border closures presented a problem, but the boots went out with emergency supplies on the first FedEx/Red Cross angel flight the next day. At first, Bertrand thought there were 30 dogs involved. She soon learned that there were 30 dogs in the NYPD Canine Unit alone. In reality, 300 search and rescue dogs from all over North America were working on the site.

“We responded by shipping another 785 pairs of Muttluks,” she says.

All the dogs were able to get back on the job. The media picked up the story and the company received hundreds of phone calls, emails, and faxes from animal lovers throughout North America, asking how they could help. Many wanted to send money, but Bertrand asked them all to direct their contributions to a local rescue group or the Red Cross.

One man, who had been distraught for weeks over the tragic events, heard the story about Bertrand’s Muttluk mission and how she contributed to the rescue efforts. He wrote her to say that she had restored his hope in humanity and that he thought the world was a good place after all.

It would be one of many, many letters Bertrand would receive over the coming weeks, as people throughout North America found the tale of the rescue dogs, and their helpers, to be a galvanizing story of hope in an otherwise overwhelming tragedy.

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Additional information

Weight 0.12 kg
Dimensions 21.6 × 14 × 1.1 cm
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