Monday, November 23, 2015

Meet the dogs who can sniff out cancer better than some lab tests

Milton Keynes, United Kingdom (CNN)Lucy, a cross between a Labrador retriever and an Irish water spaniel, failed miserably at guide dog school. As she was curious and easily excitable, random scents distracted Lucy from her master's path, and it wasn't long before she was unceremoniously kicked out. 

But her owners knew their smart dog held promise. They decided, if her nose was getting her into trouble (she was after all, bred to be a hunting dog), why not train her to sniff out something useful?

Monday, November 2, 2015

TOP 5 PROSECUTED ANIMAL-RELATED CRIMES from the Animal Defense League Fund

PITTSBURGH, PA – Today the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF), the nation’s leading legal advocacy organization for animals, released the top 5 animal-related crimes that are prosecuted in the United States. Though details of the laws vary from state to state, animal cruelty is illegal in all 50 states and the District of Columbia and these crimes can include felony charges. 

ALDF and the Association of Prosecuting Attorneys are sponsoring the 5th Annual National Animal Cruelty Prosecution Conference, November 4 – 6, 2015, in Pittsburgh, PA. The conference includes three days of law enforcement-specific training to help police, animal control officers and prosecutors from across the nation secure justice for these voiceless victims. 

Although the exact number of incidents will vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, according to Animal Legal Defense Fund, the most commonly prosecuted crimes are:

1. Neglect. Animal neglect is the failure to provide basic care required for an animal to thrive. Such cases may seem less egregious than a single, brutal act of violent abuse, but severe neglect can mean extended periods of extreme suffering resulting in permanent injury or death. A single large-scale neglect case can affect hundreds of animals, as in cases of hoarding, puppy mills, and livestock neglect. This offense is most commonly related to dog and cat care, but closely followed by horse care. By definition, these crimes are aggravated in that the offenders occupy a position of trust as the victim animal’s owner or caretaker. 

2. Affirmative Acts of Abuse.  Animal cruelty of this nature is intentionally carried out to injure or kill an animal. Unlike neglect, any person—whether or not they own the animal—can commit these crimes.  Often these cases garner a great deal of media attention due to the shocking behavior involved. Affirmative acts of abuse include every conceivable cruel act: from lighting animals on fire to using power tools to torture and kill animals. Affirmative acts of abuse also include cases of domestic violence where abusing animals is part of the offender’s system of maintaining power and control over the human victim.

3. Animal Fighting. Animal fighting is a contest in which people cause two animals to fight for the purpose of human entertainment. In some instances, typically during training prior to an organized fight, docile animals are used as bait to cement the bloodlust in the animal being prepared to fight. The most common forms of animal fighting in the United States are dogfighting and cockfighting. Animal fighting is regularly accompanied by other crimes, including gambling, money laundering, weapons offenses, and conspiracy.  As a result, many states are amending their organized crime laws (racketeering) to include animal fighting as a predicate offense. 

4. Abandonment. This crime is committed when an animal is deliberately cast off by its owner. There has been a significant spike in these cases due to owners leaving their pets behind in home foreclosure cases.

5. Bestiality. Taboo as a subject to be sure, sexual crimes against animals are not exceptional, isolated incidents. The case facts run a wide range – from individual animals assaulted by their owners in their homes, to organized bestiality events held at clandestine, often rural locations. The ugly reality is that bestiality is not yet expressly illegal in all 50 states. 

Animal Legal Defense Fund is dedicated to ensuring more animal cruelty cases are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. The national nonprofit provides assistance to prosecutors nationwide—with research and recruiting expert witnesses. ALDF also regularly offers rewards in animal abuse cruelty cases for information that leads to arrest and conviction. This incentive encourages brave individuals with information to come forward.

In 2013, ALDF formed a partnership with the Oregon District Attorneys Association and ALDF is now providing grant funding for a statewide dedicated animal cruelty prosecutor who is available to handle any animal abuse case for any one of Oregon’s 36 District Attorneys. This is the first program of its kind in the nation—but ALDF plans to provide animal protection designated prosecutors to additional jurisdictions. 

“It is important to enforce the laws we have in place to protect animals—to show criminals that acts of animal cruelty do not go unnoticed or unpunished,” says Stephen Wells, Animal Legal Defense Fund Executive Director. “It is equally important to continue to fight for stronger laws that protect animals, and oppose and defeat laws that put them in danger.”

For more information visit

About ALDF
The Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) was founded in 1979 to protect the lives and advance the interests of animals through the legal system. To accomplish this mission, ALDF files high-impact lawsuits to protect animals from harm; provides free legal assistance and training to prosecutors to assure that animal abusers are punished for their crimes; supports tough animal protection legislation and fights harmful legislation; and provides resources and opportunities to law students and professionals to advance the emerging field of animal law. For more information, please visit


Thursday, October 29, 2015

Courthouse Dogs

This is a great story about how courthouse dogs comfort victims during their testimony:

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

BetterPet, Inc. launches Equity Crowdfunding Campaign for DogLand, a Mobile Platorm that's a Social Networking Tool for Dog Lovers

Here's a great story for dog lovers!
BetterPet Inc. has announced that it is launching an equity crowdfunding initiative as the next phase in its fundraising strategy through popular equity crowdfunding platform StartEngine. Better Pet’s flagship product, DogLand, is a fast growing social app for dog lovers built around engaging, entertaining and useful content where users capture and share their favorite pet moments, and have access to a massive database of dog friendly resources. 
 The app, currently available on iOS with over sixty‐five thousand users, is a social networking tool for dog parents to discover dog-­friendly locations, ask and answer questions about pet care, and share dog-­centric photos.

“With DogLand, we set out to create an app that connects dog lovers with their community by showing dog-­‐friendly places and dog-­‐friendly people. We see ourselves as a fun navigation tool, with information driven by our community,” said President & Creative Director Gareth Wilson.

In an unprecedented development in March, the Securities and Exchange Commission finally moved on rulings under Title IV of the 2012 JumpStart Our Business Startup (JOBS) Act, paving the way for private companies to raise up to $50 million from unaccredited investors. This new ruling is known as “Regulation A+” and makes the equity crowdfunding campaigns on StartEngine possible.

“DogLand is the perfect example of a startup company with huge potential using equity crowdfunding as a way to reach new people while growing capital,” said Ron Miller, CEO of StartEngine. “The app embodies the heart of StartEngine and, like the platform, works to connect like-­minded individuals together to share their passion."

This opportunity for all potential investors to express interest in owning part of DogLand is excitng to the Better Pet’s team, especially because they believe the platorm can transform the $97B pet industry.

Individuals interested in learning more about the DogLand investment opportunity can go to

“DogLand is not just for dogs — it's for the people who love them, too. And we want the user to share in our success,” said DogLand CEO Jonathan Kolker. “That's why we decided to crowdfund our financing: to be the first major social network primarily funded by the people who use and love it.”

Think about it, humans who love canines!

Friday, July 3, 2015

Happy July 4th, Everyone!

This cat doesn't care... (It's worth it to click over to the video -- we couldn't embed it here for some reason!)

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Beneful Dog Food Bad for Dogs? Lawsuit Says Yes, Purina Says No

A lawsuit related to Beneful Dog Food has been filed against Purina. According to CNN:

"Beneful dry dog food produced by Nestle Purina PetCare has 'resulted in serious illness and death of thousands of dogs,' a lawsuit says.

The eight kinds of Beneful dog food have caused internal bleeding, liver failure, vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, seizures, bloat and kidney failure, the suit said."

Purina denies the allegations. 

Read more here:

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Barkworthies Dog Treats Recalled Due to Salmonella Risk

"Barkworthies has issued a nationwide recall of its Chicken Vittles dog chews due to a Salmonella risk.
According to the Virginia-based company, the chews may be contaminated with Salmonella which can affect the dogs who eat the product or humans who handle the treats."

Learn more in this news report.