21 December 2007
With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it can be easy to forget about keeping our pets safe during this busy time. Here are some tips to keep your pets happy and healthy during the holidays:
*Secure your tree. Cats love playing with tinsel; they’ve been known to topple entire trees by pulling on tinsel or ornaments hanging from branches. Cats and puppies are so fascinated by tinsel and ribbon they may make a meal of it, which keeps veterinarians in surgery on Christmas Day.
*Santa doesn’t need the calories, so don’t leave him cookies. Chocolate can make pets sick.
*Some pets, especially puppies and kittens, will munch on errant Christmas tree needles, which they can choke on.
*When choosing a tree, consider one with pet-friendly pliable needles – such as a Douglas fir or white pine. They won’t stick in your pet’s paws.
*They’ll be much mistletoeing and hearts will be glowing, but not if the pets are near to munch on. Fresh mistletoe and that holly can make pets very sick.
*Curious about shining flames, pets can knock over a candle and start a fire. Fumes from scented candles can be deadly to birds because of their sensitive respiratory systems.
*Pets Deserve Presents Too: When you wrap gifts (check out catnip wrapping paper), don’t forget to give something special to include your pets – after all, they’re family too!
[Source: Steve Dale's Pet World]
18 December 2007
Many shelter employees have mixed feelings over families adopting animals during the holidays. They feel that people will make an impulse adoption and will then later return the animal back to the shelter after the holidays.
But Mike Arms, president and CEO of the Helen Woodward Animal Center in Rancho Santa Fe, California, says "why not" to animal adoptions during the holidays. Arms said, “All these people are going to get a pet anyway. If shelters close their doors – they are only leaving themselves out as an option. The public will get pets where they can, from backyard breeders or pet stores. Now, you have an impulse purchase about to happen, which is exactly what you don’t want. Most shelters today screen people, so not all pets are adopted to all families. There’s a great deal of effort to match the lifestyle of the family with a pet’s personality. The backyard breeders and the pet stores are all about their love of the buck.”
After his years of experience, Arms noticed that animals adopted around the holidays are less likely to be returned to the shelter.
[Source: Steve Dale's Pet World]
17 December 2007
This year, instead of giving pet owners and lovers the same old gifts they get every year (and let's face it they have everything), why not get them a gift that really counts and helps animals in need? In the process, you receive a tax deduction and the animals benefit.
You can make a donation in a dog’s or person’s name to the Morris Animal Foundation’s Cure Canine Cancer Campaign. The Morris Animal Foundation is determined to cure cancer in dogs in the next 10 to 20 years. The need is indisputable since one in every four dogs dies of cancer. The Morris Animal Foundation is working in conjunction with many organizations, including the National Cancer Institute.
Meals on Wheels has been helping seniors in need for a very long time. Last year, in conjunction with Banfield, the Pet Hospitals and Banfield Charitable Trust – a program began to feed those seniors’ pets called Season of Suppers. When volunteers deliver meals for the seniors, they also deliver meals for pets.
“For many elderly Americans, their Pet and their Meals on Wheels volunteer are the only friends that they interact with during the day,” says U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), a long-standing champion for senior issues.
Visit any of the 655 Banfield, the Pet Hospitals locations and make a donation to help support Season of Suppers. A 2008 calendar is available for a donation of $13 or more. Donations can also be made at www.banfieldcharitabletrust.org.
[Source: Steve Dale's Pet World]
14 December 2007
Once in a while, a “lost cat returns” story comes along that is just too unbelievable to be true. This would be one of those - if the cat in question wasn’t still wearing the same collar she’d been wearing when she disappeared seven years ago.
Found less than two miles from her original home in Greenacres, Washington, Sarah seemed mostly herself, though she was missing a bit of an ear and was a little skittish around her food, as if half expecting someone to come along and snatch it away at any moment. Local animal folks are quick to point out that this is one good reason you should have your pets licensed. If Sarah hadn’t been wearing that collar, she likely wouldn’t have been returned to her family.
The other family cats, who figure prominently in Sarah running off in the first place, were none too happy to see Sarah return. But Sarah has picked up some street smarts in the meantime and is currently spending most of her time snoozing in a bedroom with the door closed.
For those of you who haven’t licensed your pets, you should consider doing so now.
13 December 2007
There was an interesting article in the NY Times today that talked about us dog lovers maybe over stepping boundaries and bringing our dogs to events that we should not have? Yikes! I can be accused of such bad behavior because they're with me all the time and I sometimes forget that not everyone thinks the same way. Oops! Here's an excerpt:
IT was a dark and stormy night — actually four stormy nights — when Jayme Otto, 31, and her husband, Ryan Otto, 33, drove 1,200 miles from their home in Boulder, Colo., to her parents’ house in Cleveland for Christmas.I hope non-pet owners will understand, we're not being callous (on the contrary, we love our furbabies and all people), we just think differently.
“We traveled all this way to bring our yellow Labrador, Cody Bear, home to spend time with his grandparents,” Ms. Otto said, “grandparents” being dog-person-speak for her parents.
Besides wanting Cody Bear “to participate in his favorite yearly activity of unwrapping gifts and destroying all the boxes,” as Ms. Otto put it, they wanted the dog to meet her brother’s fiancée.
But on Christmas morning, a commotion ensued: the fiancée was allergic to dogs and broke out in hives.
“The dog was banished to the guest bedroom and we were unable to share our Christmas morning with Cody Bear,” Ms. Otto said bitterly. “The family blowup between my brother and I over the dog resulted in my mother not speaking to me for two months and my brother for four.” This Christmas will mark the first time that the Ottos will not be returning home.
[Source: New York Times, Image: Getty Images]
12 December 2007
Looking for a pet-friendly car? Want an automobile that is tailored to fit your furry friends and make them comfortable? DogCars.com has rated the top cars for you and your four-legged companions in 2007, and has also added some cars to look for in 2008.
The best overall Top Dog Car for 2007 rated by DogCars.com is the Honda Element. It’s easy to clean and even has anti-noseprint windows. The Honda Element gets the top prize and wins the first ever Dog Car of the Year Award.
The runners up for the Top Dog Cars for 2007 are:
Best Overall Value: Suzuki Forenza: Comfortable, spacious, great fuel economy, and perfect for budget-conscious consumers. You can put everything you think of into it, as the dogcars.com team did, including a cat tree and a pair of bouncy retrievers - and there was still room for groceries!
Best Luxury SUV: Land Rover Range Rover: For those who favor luxury and off-road capability over purchase price and fuel economy. Plenty of room for dogs and all their gear with 71 cubic feet of well-designed cargo space.
The 4 vehicles to watch out for in 2008 are: The all new ScionXB, Volvo XC70, Dodge Grand Caravan, and Buick Enclave. The 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid was also marked as worth a test-drive for dog lovers who want a cleaner ride.
Want to learn more about these dog-friendly rides and see the rest of the 2007 winners? Go here.
11 December 2007
Hey everyone, check out this adorable sweater I bought at Modern Tails for my pup, Tiger Lily. I've always loved dressing her up for the holidays, and when I saw this adorable red and white striped sweater with the cute snowman on the back, I couldn't resist! What's your idea of the perfect holiday outfit for your dog?
10 December 2007
Instead of asking for gifts for his birthday, Colby Jarvis asked for donations for VCU Medical Center's Therapy Dog Program, which has about 30 therapy dogs. After meeting Bama, a member of the program, and learning how much the program helps people, including other children, he decided he would donate his birthday money - $177, to the program.
“I really wanted to help some dogs,” Colby said. “I like to take care of dogs and I really love dogs.” Colby has his own dog at home named Briar. Colby's father, Scott Jarvis, said, “I’m extremely proud. He did this all on his own, and I think he’s always had a really giving spirit. All three kids have already, but this was just something really extraordinary for him, and we’re really impressed, really proud.”
We could all learn a valuable lesson from Colby. Way to go!
06 December 2007
Pets are not just companions, but they are part of our family. They are our furbabies, our kids, our four-legged family members. According to a Harris Poll, more and more families are considering their pets part of the family.
WHO SAYS PETS ARE PART OF THE FAMILY:
* 88% pet owners consider their pets part of the family, while 7% don't.
* Women are more likely to believe this at 93% versus men at 84%.
* Dog owners are slightly more likely (93%) than cat owners (89%) to believe this.
WHO'S MOST LIKELY TO HAVE PETS:
* 63% of Americans currently have pets.
* Women (at 68%) are more likely than men (at 57%).
* 71% of Generation Xers (aged 31-42) have pets.
* 67% of Baby Boomers (aged 43-61) have pets.
* Those from the Midwest are most likely (67%) to have a pet.
* Those from the East are least likely (58%) to have a pet.
WHICH PET IS MOST POPULAR:
* Dogs are the most popular - 7 in 10 pet owners have a dog.
* 52% of pet owners have a cat.
* 15% of pet owners have a fish.
* 7% of pet owners have a bird.
* 12% - other.
HOW MANY PETS DO PEOPLE HAVE:
* 35% have one.
* 25% have two.
* 13% have three.
* 7% have four.
* 6% have five.
* 13% have six or more.
WHO BUYS PRESENTS FOR THEIR PETS:
* 65% have bought their pets holiday presents, while 37% have bought birthday presents.
* 71% of dog owners have bought their pet a holiday present compared to 63% of cat owners.
* 42% of dog owners have gotten a birthday present for their pet compared to 33% of cat owners.
* 23% of pet owners cook especially for them.
* 23% of dog owners dress their pet in clothing, compared to 14% of cat owners.
* 10% bring their pets to work with them.
05 December 2007
There’s a new Lassie in town. Ghillie, an English Springer Spaniel, is a hero for saving a woman's life.
Two years ago, the then nine-month-old dog came up to a group of workmen and started barking and running back and forth along a path. At first, the workers were confused and uncertain of what Ghillie wanted them to do. The workers then realized that the dog wanted them to follow him. He led them to Mary Wilson, who had collapsed, was unconscious, and had fallen in some undergrowth.
The workers called an ambulance and Mary was rushed to the hospital, and she recovered from her epileptic seizure. Now, Ghillie is receiving an award, the PDSA’s Gold Medal, known as the animals’ George Cross, for his life-saving actions.
Ghillie’s owner, Mary's son, said, “He’s a fantastic dog. That it was my mother who he saved through his actions has made him a very special dog for all the family.”
Mary's husband added: "To us he is a very intelligent dog. What he did was fantastic, and Mary and I will forever be grateful for what he did."
The director of the animal charity that will be awarding Ghillie said, "His devotion and persistence that fateful December day undoubtedly saved Mary's life. This is an extraordinary story of that unique and inexplicable bond between people and their pets.”
Great job Ghillie!
04 December 2007
Oleander is one lucky dog, after having survived living by the median bushes on Interstate 10 in Banning, California for two months. Oleander was recently rescued and comfortably awaiting a home at a Riverside County animal shelter in Banning.
When Oleander was brought into the shelter on November 17th, she weighed only 35 pounds. Luckily, although Oleander was extremely thin, she was in good health except for a fractured front right leg. She will undergo surgery in a few weeks to fix her leg, which will be paid by the Department of Animal Services.
Oleander is believed to have survived all this time by eating mice and other rodents. The Department of Animal Services hopes to find someone to "foster" Oleander temporarily before and after she undergoes surgery. After her surgery, she will be up for adoption.
Oleander is a miracle dog for sure!
[Source: The Press-Enterprise and Itchmo]
03 December 2007
I was utterly disgusted and enraged after reading this story:
Animal control officer Jamie Glandon was completely shocked when she opened a freezer at the Rushville Animal Shelter in Indiana. She found Gabby, a dog, alive in the freezer where the carcasses of euthanized animals are put until they are discarded. It is believed that Gabby was euthanized four days before and survived being in the freezer for all that time.
Glandon said, “I went into the freezer to dispose of an animal, and (Gabby) popped her head up out of a barrel.” She said she was ordered to euthanize Gabby again, but Glandon refused and took the dog to a veterinarian instead. Glandon added that four other dogs, a border collie and three black lab puppies, survived euthanasia attempts since the summer at the shelter.
Jack Hill, the shelter director, has been suspended over the allegations that five dogs have survived euthanasia attempts. Glandon said police have confiscated her computer at the shelter and she fears that she may lose her job because she spoke up about the incidences and refused to euthanize Gabby.
She stated, “Gabby is in hiding. She is somewhere where she is safe, and she is recuperating. We’re not making her location known to anybody for safety reasons for her.” Glandon hopes to find her a new home after she recovers.
Hopefully, Jack Hill, the horrible director, will lose his job. Kudos to you Glandon, for doing the right thing and sticking by Gabby!