Monday, December 28, 2009

Another year...

It's hard to believe another year has passed. Wasn't it just yesterday that we were all getting ready for Y2K and the year 2000? How can 2010 be approching in just a few days?

At Our Place to Paws, we've seen a few changes this year. We've become active on Facebook, and now have more than 70 friends on our Facebook page and more than 200 members of our Facebook group. (We really need to choose just one, but I don't want to lose anyone who joined just one or the other!). We have published some wonderful winning photos and honorable mentions in our Reader Photo contests and have enjoyed some special Cats vs. Dogs essays and other contributions to the site. I want to thank everyone who has visited www.OurPlacetoPaws.com over the last year and who has participated in our site, read our blog, or taken part in any way in our online community of animal lovers and friends.

Of course, we've also wrestled with the future of our site. As I mentioned a few months ago, Our Place to Paws is purely a "labor of love" that gets no funding -- all of the prizes and the Web services of our incredibly wonderful Web master, Justin Sablich (who charges us ridiculously low rates for his great work) are paid for by me simply because I have always wanted to do something for animals. Sharing information and stories about animals and wildlife and encouraging people to think about animal welfare is important to me, and as the site has grown I have wanted to continue to offer something to those friends and fans of Our Place to Paws who have written and said that the site means a lot to them.

Unfortunately I am not an advertising salesperson or the type of marketing person who knows how to make this a money-making venture. Plus, the Web and Facebook have exploded with so many groups and sites...and it's tough to keep up. So as the new year approaches, I once again find myself thinking about the future of Our Place to Paws.

If you have any ideas...feel free to comment!

For now, however, I just want to wish you all a happy new year, and to thank you all for everything you do for animals. Hug your furry, feathery friends for me.

-- Faye

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Fiona


She squeaks behind me,
little girl,
a whirl
all eyes and heart and fluff.
She thinks she’s tough.
She’s not;
She’s small and stubby
with a little tail,
a sail
that tears
around the room
as if nor’easter tossed.

Fiona dreams of tigers,
rough.
Just watching, I can’t
get enough.


- Faye Rapoport DesPres

It's gotten very cold in New England, but Scottish Folds know how to stay warm!



Saturday, December 12, 2009

Jack the Shark

Have you checked out our new "Animal Columnnist," Jack the Shark? Jack wanted to tell us a little bit about sharks -- what he has to say might surprise you. It might even spur you to take a little action! Read Jack's column at Our Place to Paws, on this page!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Our Winter Updates are Now Online

Visit www.OurPlacetoPaws.com to see who won our winter pet photo contest and Cats vs. Dogs essay contest...and to read our feature article listing 10 Wishes for Animals in 2010. Also hear from our new "Animal Columnist," Jack the Shark, read a book review of "Marley & Me," and download a new Kid's Corner Animal Art project!

Enjoy...

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

"Our dog chases people on a bike. We've had to take it away from him"


- Winston Churchill

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

HAPPY THANKSGIVING

OUR PLACE TO PAWS WISHES EVERYONE
A HAPPY, RELAXING THANKSGIVING!



Saturday, November 21, 2009

The cat in the video below might be one of the trapped LI cats

News story on the Cats relocated to Lido Beach

Island Park resident traps felines
By ARIELLA MONTI

The Nassau County Police Department is investigating reports that Island Park resident Lee Natale has been trapping neighborhood cats and relocating them to the Sands catering hall parking lot in Lido Beach.

"We're just beside ourselves here," said Natale's neighbor, Nancy Sarro, who noticed that her cat, Zeppelin, had been missing for more than a day on Nov. 9. Sarro said that Zeppelin, a 4-year-old gray male, often spent time outside, but to her knowledge never wandered farther than her property.

Sarro explained that her daughter saw a man, whom Natale identified only as a friend, loading a cat in a carrying case into his car. When the family confronted the man, he admitted to bringing 10 cats to the Sands parking lot, adjacent to the Lido Towne House condominiums on Lido Boulevard in Lido Beach.

"We've been going there day and night trying to catch back all these animals," Sarro said of the various volunteers who took part in the hunt. Read more here.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

URGENT Greyhound Adoption Need

Dairyland Greyhound Racetrack in Kenosha, Wisconsin will be closing on December 31, 2009. 900 Greyhounds need to be adopted or they will be euthanized. Please help me get the word out; we only have 6 weeks to get this task done. Contact Joanne Kehoe Operations Director P: 312.559.0887 Or Dairyland Race Track Adoption Center direct at (262) 612-8256

Another Long Island Cat Found and Rescued!

"FOUND!! Another Island Park kitty eas caught & returned to his mom Fran in Island Park. He was rescued at the Sands Catering Hall Parking lot in Lido Beach. This area stretches 1 1/2 miles." - Victoria Winn

Monday, November 16, 2009

A note to us from Victoria, who is still working to rescue the cats on Long Island

"I would not have been able to get the ad out if it were not for you Faye and other organizations who gave me advice. As of today, I spoke with Ariella Monti a news reporter from The Long Island Herald Newspapers and she will be publishing the story this Thursday (it will be available online) and I spoke with Joe Panz from Rescue Ink as PetPeeves forwarded him the ad and he was very very nice. Everyone has been so nice and helpful. Thank God for all of these organizations, I pray these animals find their families and this does not happen again. God Bless all of you! - Victoria Winn"

Mr. Roo


The latest pet portrait by animal artist Peggy Dey of Dey by Dey Studio

Saturday, November 14, 2009

From the Three Wishes Foundation

A newly adopted cat has run away. Please also send prayers for his safe return. He is lost in College Station, Texas.


CAT: Siamese mix, young adult male, 11/7 vicinity CS H.E.B./Park Place & Holleman, ‘country boy lost in the city’, email ittybittylostkitty@ verizon.net


Please also cross post on your web page.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Cat rescued from Sands Catering parking lot on Lido Blvd in Lido Beach, Long Island

If you know whose cat this is, please contact Victoria Winn at victoria@acshomeshow.com



Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Long Islanders Seeking Help for Missing Cats

Our Place to Paws received this message from Victoria Winn of Long Island:

"I am a local Long Islander that rescues Horses and cats. We learned of a situation where a couple living in Island Park have been luring neighborhood with canned food and a ‘double sided trap. They then transport the cats to the Sands Catering parking lot on Lido Blvd in Lido Beach. They have taken pets of their neighbors and overall they have stolen & dumped 30+ cats. These are domestic cats. We have set 2 traps (as that is all I have) and we caught one this morning and she was returned to her family in Island Park. A dozen families are missing their animals and we need advice how to this as well as volunteers, and perhaps borrow traps. We don’t know what to do if we catch cats and do not know who they belong to. Please advise how we can organize or what help is out there for these animals."

If you know of a way to help, please contact OurPlacetoPaws (at) aol.com (Replace the (at) with the "at "sign on your keyboard.) I will put you in touch with Victoria. Thank you!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

From Paw Nation: Saga of Animal Control Officer Who Gave Away Lost Dog Ends Happily for Pet Owner

What an unbelievable story -- I'm so glad this pet owner kept looking for her pet!!

-- An animal control officer in Stoughton, Mass. found a woman's lost dog -- only to give it away as a gift.

As reported by the Brockton Enterprise, an animal control officer,Kristin Bousquet, was fired after an internal investigation and hearing revealed that she had found a lost dog belonging to Janet Torren, and inexplicably gave it away to a police officer and his girlfriend to keep as a pet, all the while telling Torren that she had not found the dog, a four year-old Yorkshire Terrier named Shai, who went missing on September 18. Read more at Paw Nation.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Our November Updates are now online!

Please visit:

www.OurPlacetoPaws.com!

See all of our new November updates!

See our very cute November photo contest winners!

Read our feature story about a neighborhood colony of feral cats!

Check out the latest kids' corner art project for children!

Read a book review of "A Year of Cats and Dogs!"

You'll want to meet our new animal columnist: Duncan the Scottish Fold (look familiar?)

It's all online now for your information and enjoyment. Visit
www.OurPlacetoPaws.com!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Prosthetics Keep Animals Active, Even When Injured

This great story in USA Today profiles OrthoPets, which produces custom prosthetics and braces for animals. There is a wonderful picture of a golden retriever running on all fours for the first time -- brought tears to my eyes!

Enjoy the article here.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Larry the Lobster will go free

A New York City restaurant has agreed to release an 11-pound lobster that is probably 70 years old back into the ocean in Maine after a reporter wrote about the lobster and readers protested to its capture. Go Larry!

Read more at PawNation.

Monday, October 26, 2009

ALLEY CAT ALLIES OFFERS WINTER SAFETY TIPS FOR FERAL AND STRAY CATS


Guide for building inexpensive shelters and feeding stations available on web site


BETHESDA – Alley Cat Allies, the national advocate for feral and stray cats, this week launched an online guide offering tips to feral cat caregivers and concerned individuals who want to help feral and stray cats this winter, including simple instructions for building inexpensive feeding stations and shelters to keep cats safe from the winter elements. The online guide is available at be www.alleycat.org/WinterWeather.

“We know that millions of people already help to care for the cats in their communities each day,” said Becky Robinson, president of Alley Cat Allies. “While most feral cats are skilled at finding their own food and place to sleep, providing specially-built shelters and dedicated feeding sites guarantee the cats a warm spot to escape the harsh winter weather and deter them from places they aren’t wanted.”

Feral cats spend their whole lives outdoors, and can be found all over the country, from the largest cities to the most rural landscapes. They are not socialized to humans and can’t be adopted into homes. Feral cats live amongst their own in family groups called “colonies,” and studies show they are just as healthy as pet cats.

To help the feral and stray cats in your community this winter, Alley Cat Allies suggests the following simple steps:

Build an outdoor shelter and a feeding station.

Shelters are easy and inexpensive to build. You can use the plans available at www.alleycat.org/WinterWeather, or modify a pre-built dog house. Some manufacturers also sell pre-built cat shelters.

The shelter should be elevated off the ground and sited in a quiet, unobtrusive area with a minimal amount of traffic. A good-sized shelter offers a space just big enough for three to five cats to huddle. The door should be no more than six to eight inches wide to keep out wildlife and bigger predators. Install a flap on the door to keep out snow, rain and wind.

In addition to a shelter, you can build a simple feeding station with a roof and sides to protect cats from the elements while they eat.


Insulate the shelter against moisture as well as cold.

Straw resists the wet and keeps a shelter warm, and is the best choice for insulation and bedding. Blankets are not a good idea, as they absorb moisture like a sponge.

Keep food and drinking water from freezing.

Wet food in insulated containers is most ideal for winter time feeding, as it takes less energy for cats to digest than dry food – and cats can use all that extra energy to keep warm.
Preventing liquids from freezing can be a challenge during the winter and can lead to a risk for dehydration. Keep water drinkable by using bowls that are deep rather than wide, and place them in a sunny spot. If possible, refill the bowls with warm water. A pinch of sugar in the water also keeps it from freezing as quickly, and provides an added energy boost for the cats. Alternatives include the heated electric bowls found in many pet shops.

The cats will come to expect you if you keep a regular feeding schedule, and the food and water will spend less time in the cold before it is consumed.

Get educated about cats, and stop the breeding cycle with Trap-Neuter-Return.

Make sure to educate yourself, your family and your neighbors about the habits of outdoor cats during the winter time. For example, know to check under the car or give the hood a tap before starting the engine, as cats will sometimes crawl into car engines or hide under them for warmth.

Prevent another “kitten season” next year by getting the outdoor cats in your neighborhood spayed or neutered now. Cats have a 63-day gestation period and usually mate in winter.

End the cycle of breeding and help the cats lead better lives by humanely trapping them and having them spayed or neutered by a veterinarian as part of a Trap-Neuter-Return program. Make sure the trapped cats are quickly moved to a warm vehicle for transportation to a veterinary clinic. A local volunteer group that practices Trap-Neuter-Return may be able to help.

Visit Alley Cat Allies’ web site, www.alleycat.org, for more information about connecting to local resources and starting a Trap-Neuter-Return program in your community.


More information about winter safety for outdoor cats can be found at www.alleycat.org/WinterWeather.

# # #

Friday, October 23, 2009

Meriweather got his miracle!


Paws reader Marisa reports that miracle stray Meriweather, who she flew to Massachusetts after finding him abandoned in Tennessee, will soon have a happy home in the Berkshires with a family that is delighted to have him and lives just down the street from a store full of organic dog treats! She thanks Paws for all our help spreading the word!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Nora the Piano-Playing Cat Honored by ASPCA

The ASPCA will be handing out 10 Humane Awards on October 29, reports USA Today. Among the recipients is Nora the Piano-Playing Cat, the ASPCA's 2009 Cat of the Year. The famous feline is being rewarded for raising the profile of shelter pets. Yay, Nora!

Read more at Paw Nation.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Be a part of Meriweather's Miracle!


Marisa, an Our Place to Paws Reader, is trying to find a home for a very special dog. Read Marisa's story below:


Every October for the past 4 years I have volunteered at The Elephant Sanctuary in Hohenwald, TN. On Friday, 10/16, I was in Hohenwald and decided to visit the grave site of Meriweather Lewis (of Lewis and Clark fame). Its on the Natchez Trace, very secluded, heavily wooded. A dog rushed out to meet us, clearly in
bad shape, drenched and shivering.....I never did get to pay my respects to Mr. Lewis...

So, the vet in Hohenwald saw him amd gave us the choice of keeping him, putting him down, or having the pound put him down. Rural TN has a 27% unemployment rate, there are few shelters and those that exist are overflowing far worse than ours. Its common for unwanted dogs to be shot- considered a kindness.

So, the newly dubbed Meriweather was neutered, microchipped, given a rabies vaccine, etc., and booked on the flight home to Boston.

He is between 2-3 yrs old, very healthy (we had blood work done), weighs 39.5 lbs, but should be 45 or so lbs per the vet. He is curious about cats, but I am not comfortable stating he's cat-proofed. He loves adult men and women, but is very drawn to children around age 10-12. We think his original family must have
had children in that age group. He is a very active guy and will need a home where he gets lots of love. He loves being petted and gives licks freely. I'll pass along a photo tomorrow.

Thanks for any help, Marisa

UPDATE

Everyone who helps get Meriweather a home is a sweet soul!

Update: he slept well in his new temporary home, high pitch bark means bathroom, and he did go outside. He is strongly attracted to outdoor life- will bolt after anything, including a leaf....so, a fenced in yard or leash at all times. He did lead me into the middle of the street last night while having his 1st MA walk- didn't even look.

I should tell you he is a chow/collie mix as best as anyone can tell. Light red hair mixed with black, whoite front paws, partially blind left eye from a previous wound. The wound has healed completely and is without infection, but it does look like he has a cataract there. One ear is pointy upward, and the other
droops down. He really is a sight.

We need to get his story out there. Thanks for being part of Meriweather's miracle!

BTW, when I say sit or heel boy, or day walk and point, he does what I ask. I'm sure he's somewhat confused over the name Meriweather. (I didn't name him...) He clearly knows a few commands.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Celebrate Today and Make a Difference in Cats' Lives: From Alley Cat Allies

Today marks the ninth annual National Feral Cat Day, an event we founded years ago on the date of our incorporation to honor our nation's feral cats.

We hope you will be taking part in one of the over 100 events going on in 33 states across the country. View Alley Cat Allies' list of events online. Some celebrations are taking place this coming weekend—so there is still time to attend.

Can’t make it to an event at all? Don’t worry. There are things you can do today and every day to support Alley Cat Allies and raise awareness about feral cats and Trap-Neuter-Return.

Whether you hang a poster in your town, take part in the “I’m an Alley Cat Ally” photo pledge, write a letter to the editor of your local paper, or make a donation to Alley Cat Allies, we’re happy to have you on our side as we work to protect and improve the lives of cats across the nation.

Check out our list of events.
Hang a poster in your neighborhood and all around town.
Show the world you're an "Alley Cat Ally."
Write a letter to the editor using these samples as your guide.
Donate today to help make a difference in cats' lives.
All of us here at Alley Cat Allies wish you a very happy National Feral Cat Day!

Sincerely,

Becky Robinson
President

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Cold Weather Tips for Your Pet

Winter is coming and in many areas of the country it's getting cold outside. Here in New England some areas are starting to see their first frosts. Cold weather is a special challenge for many animals and for pets. The ASPCA posts special tips for pets in cold weather, including:

# Keep your cat inside. Outdoors, felines can freeze, become lost or be stolen, injured or killed. Cats who are allowed to stray are exposed to infectious diseases, including rabies, from other cats, dogs and wildlife.

# During the winter, outdoor cats sometimes sleep under the hoods of cars. When the motor is started, the cat can be injured or killed by the fan belt. If there are outdoor cats in your area, bang loudly on the car hood before starting the engine to give the cat a chance to escape.

# Never let your dog off the leash on snow or ice, especially during a snowstorm—dogs can lose their scent and easily become lost. More dogs are lost during the winter than during any other season, so make sure yours always wears ID tags.

# Thoroughly wipe off your dog's legs and stomach when he comes in out of the sleet, snow or ice. He can ingest salt, antifreeze or other potentially dangerous chemicals while licking his paws, and his paw pads may also bleed from snow or encrusted ice.

# Never shave your dog down to the skin in winter, as a longer coat will provide more warmth. When you bathe your dog in the colder months, be sure to completely dry him before taking him out for a walk. Own a short-haired breed? Consider getting him a coat or sweater with a high collar or turtleneck with coverage from the base of the tail to the belly. For many dogs, this is regulation winter wear.

The ASPCA posts many more tips like these on their Web site, HERE.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Get Smart about Feral Cats

On National Feral Cat Day—and All Year Round

By Becky Robinson, President, Alley Cat Allies

This October 16, 2009 marks the ninth annual National Feral Cat Day—an opportunity for people everywhere to help protect and improve the lives of cats.

Americans care about cats—in fact, over 40% have fed a stray cat. National Feral Cat Day is the perfect occasion to jumpstart American’s admiration of cats by helping communities across the country learn more about feral cats and Trap-Neuter-Return. Many celebrate National Feral Cat Day by educating others and hosting special events, including workshops, fundraisers, and neuter clinic days.

Get started by understanding some basic facts about feral cats:

Feral cats aren’t snugglers. Though feral cats are members of the domestic cat species just like pet cats, they are fearful of humans. Since feral cats are not socialized to humans, they cannot be adopted. They live healthy, happy lives in their outdoor homes.

Traditional approaches for feral cats—such as catch and kill or attempts to relocate—do not work. They are costly, inhumane, and endless. Removing cats from an area creates a vacuum, which more cats move into and breed to fill. Decades of these failed practices prove their futility.

Trap-Neuter-Return improves the lives of cats. Cats are humanely trapped, brought to a veterinarian to be evaluated, neutered, vaccinated, and eartipped. Cats friendly to humans and kittens are adopted into homes, while healthy adult feral cats are returned to their outdoor home. No more kittens. The population stabilizes and their lives are improved. The behaviors associated with mating, like yowling and fighting, stop. Trap-Neuter-Return is the humane approach for feral cats.

Your community wants compassionate solutions. An overwhelming majority of Americans—81%—believe it is more humane to leave a stray cat outside to live out her life than have her caught and killed, according to a national survey conducted by Harris Interactive for Alley Cat Allies. Your community can be a safer place for feral cats if it embraces Trap-Neuter-Return.

Show your support for stray and feral cats on National Feral Cat Day—and all year round—by educating and informing your friends, neighbors, and veterinarian about these feral cat facts. Write a letter to the editor of your town’s paper, hand out information at special events (like a fair) and public places (like a shopping mall), or place an ad in your community newsletter. Samples for all of these materials are available to download online at www.alleycat.org/NFCD.


Here are three more things you can do:

1. Direct your veterinarian to our special web center dedicated to feral cat veterinary care at www.alleycat.org/Veterinarian. What better way to reach out to fellow cat lovers? Put our expert advice in the hands of the professionals people turn to for help.


2. Confirm your ally status. Commit to protecting cats along with Alley Cat Allies on National Feral Cat Day and all year round. Sign the “I’m an Alley Cat Ally” photo pledge and submit your photo online of you and your pets holding the signed pledge. Ask your friends and family to do it too! Find more information online at www.alleycat.org/NFCD.

3. Host an event. Your efforts help us achieve our goals of protecting and improving the lives of cats. Invite your friends and family and other people who care about cats, and be sure to tell us and others in your local community about it by registering your event online at www.alleycat.org/NFCD.


With your help, we can truly make a difference in cats’ lives by simply sharing with others the fact that feral cats require a different kind of care. Education is an important first step in protecting cats in towns all across the country—you can be their voice.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Another entry for our November contest -- what cuties!



Sent in by Carol Olah, who wrote: "This is a picture of two of my babies, Bailey, she is a Yorkie/Dachshund mix and Little Bit, a Shih Tzu. They love spending time outside in the yard."

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The future of Our Place to Paws

Our Place to Paws, the Web site (www.OurPlacetoPaws.com) has been online for nearly three years now. In that time we have posted articles about animals and animal welfare, run monthly photo and essay contests, posted fun animal columns and Kids' Corner art projects and tried our best to create a fun online community for animal lovers everywhere.

The addition of Facebook has helped us connect with new friends, both through the Facebook group and the newer Facebook page, which allows us to post photos and share comments with the fans who have also "Friended" us there.

As 2010 approaches, we have a tough decision ahead -- whether to keep Our Place to Paws online. The site makes no money -- it is run purely for the love of animals and has attracted no advertising (truthfully because I am not a marketing person and have put little effort into trying to get any advertising or into building the daily visitorship of the site after the initial six months or so, when finances ran out to keep the professional effort going). In addition, our visitorship has remained constant -- only about 40-45 visitors a day, and we're not sure how many of those are actually individual visitors.

Much of the decision about whether to keep Our Place to Paws online will depend on whether there are people out there who really enjoy the site and feel strongly about keeping it up. If you do feel strongly about keeping Our Place to Paws online, please send a note to OurPlacetoPaws (at) aol.com and let me know. If I get a strong response, it will certainly help us make the decision. If you have ideas for increasing participation and visitorship, those are always appreciated, too, but keep in mind we have zero budget.

Thanks for your interest in Our Place to Paws, and thank you for caring about the animals.

Best,
Faye Rapoport DesPres
Editor, Our Place to Paws

Friday, September 25, 2009

Monday, September 21, 2009

From the Chicago Tribune: Reduce Your Pet's Carbon Footprint

by
Morieka Johnson McClatchy-Tribune

Most pets spend their days focused on three main events -- food time, poop time and playtime. If only life could be so easy for their owners. Fortunately, there are easy options that will help reduce their mark on Mother Nature. Make just one of these changes, and your pet's paw print will be a bit smaller.

-- Get the good stuff: Invest in a high-quality pet food that lists a protein such as beef, lamb, chicken or fish as the first ingredient rather than a by-product or beef meal. This one change can make a major impact on your pet's health while reducing the amount of poop left to scoop. Read the rest here.

Monday, September 14, 2009

DOG LOVERS: IMPORTANT TO KNOW Sugar-free ingredient called a dog killer

By Patty McCormac

NORTH COUNTY — LuLu, a 2-year-old teacup Yorkshire terrier, ate sugarless gum that she pilfered from a purse that was left on a recliner in her Solana Beach home.

It almost killed her. What probably saved LuLu was owner Dorit Hanein seeing a gum wrapper on the stairs and remembering a poster listing toxic substances for dogs weeks earlier at a veterinarian's office.

“I don't know why I would make that connection, but it took about three seconds,” Hanein said.

With the little dog vomiting and shivering, Hanein raced her to the veterinarian, who successfully treated 4-pound LuLu for xylitol toxicosis. Read the rest of this important story here.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Hamilton

One of our cats, Hamilton, went in for an ultrasound and some needle aspirate biopsies yesterday. So far, so good...nothing showing lymphoma. Hamilton is 14 and has lost some weight recently, and now we're hopeful that it is just ongoing long-term kidney disease, something that can be managed with diet and subcue fluids. We're waiting for the results of a couple of more tests to be sure he doesn't have pancreatitis or something else that might be causing inflammation or other issues.

It's so tough watching them age and worrying that they won't be around forever.

Friday, August 21, 2009

From the Humane Society of the United States on Dog Fighting

I live in Chicago. Nearly every day for the past three years, I've spent time with young men on the streets who used to fight dogs. I've guided them -- and their dogs -- to a new and better life free from animal cruelty.

I help run the End Dogfighting program in Chicago for The Humane Society of the United States. And I want to tell you about a young man named Sean Moore (pictured). Sean fought dogs starting at age 12, and saw hundreds of dogs die in street fights. His dog Butch won the last fight of Sean's dogfighting career, but had to be put down because of his wounds. "That was it for me," he says.

Now an anti-dogfighting advocate in our End Dogfighting program, Sean scans the streets for young people with pit bulls. Some of the dogs have wounds, and most have never seen a vet. He invites these would-be dogfighters to free pit bull training classes, where we work to build skills at both ends of the leash -- working with the dogs and the young men.

Over the last year alone, our End Dogfighting programs in Chicago and Atlanta have reached hundreds of at-risk youth and dogs with constructive alternatives and a message of compassion. We want to reach thousands more by expanding this program to other communities. Will you help?

Just this week, we've gotten more than a hundred inquiries asking The HSUS for help in starting End Dogfighting programs in other communities. They'd heard about our program through the publicity surrounding Michael Vick. So many cities across America are desperate for The HSUS's innovative community-based outreach programs.

Success stories like Sean Moore's explain why. Sean recruits young men who come to class barely able to control their lunging, snarling animals. As the participants gain pride in a dog's performance on the agility course and experience positive competition, dogfighting becomes much less tempting -- and ultimately, at odds with their newly formed beliefs. The men begin to see their dogs as friends, not fighters. Some men even become community ambassadors like Sean and help pull others out of the quicksand that is urban dogfighting.

But this proven community-based program can't thrive and grow by itself. Will you donate $25, $50, even $100 today to help save even more dogs and young men from lives of violence? Click here.

This program is about change -- the kind of change that inspires. Both people and pups can make astonishing progress through The HSUS' End Dogfighting program. But we can't do it without your help. Please join me by making a special gift today. Together we can reduce dogfighting on the streets, person by person. And we can shield dogs from this horrible cruelty.

Sincerely,


Tio Hardiman
Top Dog
The HSUS' End Dogfighting Campaign

Thursday, August 20, 2009

From Alley Cat Allies

National Feral Cat Day (NFCD) is your opportunity to help protect and improve the lives of cats across the county—and it's just around the corner!

On October 16, celebrate NFCD by reaching out to others with the message that feral cats are healthy and happy outdoors and that Trap-Neuter-Return improves cats' lives.

National Feral Cat Day is the perfect opportunity to get involved by distributing educational materials or hosting local events like workshops, fundraisers, or special spay and neuter clinic days. At www.alleycat.org/NFCD, you can read about ideas for holding a local event of your own, download the 2009 poster to hang in your veterinarian's office and other high traffic areas in your community, and participate in our “I’m an Alley Cat Ally” Photo Pledge to tell the world that you care about the lives of feral and stray cats.

Keep an eye out for this year’s poster, arriving in mailboxes soon.

With your help, we can truly make a difference in cats’ lives. You can be their voice—on National Feral Cat Day, and all year round.

Sincerely,

Becky Robinson
President

Sunday, August 16, 2009

New Photos in Our Facebook Group

There have been some great new photos posted in our Facebook group. Come on over, join the group, also "friend" the page, and join in on the fun! You can also enter our photo contest by emailing a photo to OurPlacetoPaws (at) aol.com.




Sunday, August 9, 2009

A lot has been going on for Paws

Hello friends,

A lot has been going on for Our Place to Paws, most of it on Facebook. We started advertising our little Facebook group, and it grew to 152 members. We decided then to move to a Facebook page, and we just launched that this week. With a Facebook page, we can post photos and our "friends" can comment on the photos, write on our wall, and see each others' comments. It's just a little more fun and interactive. So if you're a member of the group, please migrate over to the new page and "friend" us! It's a little confusing -- when you search for Our Place to Paws, look for the one with the gray tabby Scottish fold as the profile picture. That's Duncan.

This Fold, however, is Fiona...and she's enjoying her new basket.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Groups seek to defend lynx against snowmobile lawsuit

Rare wildcat population has been reduced by trapping, habitat loss

BOZEMAN, Mont. — Six conservation groups filed a motion in the Wyoming district court today to defend the designation of critical habitat for Canada lynx, a species threatened with extinction in the United States. In May, snowmobile advocacy groups in Washington and Wyoming filed suit seeking to nullify a February 2009 rule that identified and designated the critical habitat for lynx in Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Minnesota, and Maine. The designation allows the Service to protect lynx from harmful activities within areas that are crucial for the species’ survival and recovery. Read more here.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

SeaWorld and Busch Gardens Grant $700,000 To Help Protect At-Risk Animals

ORLANDO, Fla. – Endangered species and habitats under stress will get a much-needed lift this week thanks to $700,000 in grants being awarded by the non-profit SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund to wildlife protection projects in the U.S. and around the world.

The Fund’s board of directors approved grants to 83 projects, including wildlife rescue and rehabilitation efforts, research of little-known species, protection of critical habitat, and grassroots education efforts aimed atincreasing awareness and changing behaviors.

One of the Fund’s 2009 grant recipients, Save the Elephants, is working to protect the Earth’s largest land animal, using technology in unexpected and effective ways to reduce conflicts with humans.

“Rising human populations and expanding agriculture often are in conflict with elephants,” said Iain Douglass-Hamilton, founder of Save the Elephants. “It is essential to find new ways of lowering the strife. Save the Elephants, with support from SeaWorld and Busch Gardens, has a highly innovative project that sends out an alarm every time a tagged elephant approaches a virtual fence line protecting farmers’ crops. This is done when a text message is sent straight from the elephant’s collar onto the project’s cell phones. SeaWorld and Busch Gardens’ support has been vital in developing the application of this high-tech conservation approach. Read more here.

Friday, July 24, 2009

"The Outdoor King"

We've just completed a program to capture, treat, neuter, vaccinate and release the feral cats in our neighborhood (four kittens and one sweet young cat that was tame and had been abandoned and was struggling and being injured in fights outdoors will be adopted into good homes). Here are two pictures of our "great white whale," the cat we'd seen for years and had been unable to capture, but who now is on his way to a healthier and better life.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

An interesting site that seeks to "connect animal lovers with zoos":

World Zoo Today

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Outrageous!!!

Boston Zoo May Close, Euthanize Hundreds of Animals

The Franklin Park Zoo, a Boston landmark for nearly a century, may be forced to close and euthanize up to a fifth of the animals in its care due to devastating budget cuts.

New England's largest zoo and its counterpart, the Stoneham Zoo, saw their state funding cut from $6.5 million to $2.5 million by Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, the Boston Globe reported, and expects to run out of money by October. Read more here.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy July 4!

Happy Independence Day, everyone in the U.S. I hope you have an opportunity to enjoy some quality time with family and friends. Remember, some animals are frightened of fireworks. If your dogs or cats get scared, make sure to bring them inside (if they're outdoors) and, whether they are indoor or outdoor pets, keep them away from the festivities if there's a chance they could get hurt. (And keep yourselves safe, too!)

Enjoy your holiday!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Red Pandas Shan Tou and Yukiko Welcome Triplets at North Dakota Zoo


Three cheers for Shan Tou and Yukiko! The rare red panda couple are the proud parents of triplets born at the Red River Zoo in Fargo, N.D., on June 11.

And the still-to-be-named panda babies are quite the big deal. "The last time triplets were born in North America was ten years [ago]," the zoo's animal keeper, Marcy Thompson, tells PEOPLE Pets, adding that the pair had twins last year, two of the five red pandas born in all of North America in 2008. Read the rest HERE.

Photo credit: Marcy Thompson

Sunday, June 28, 2009

From the ASPCA

Wisconsin Animal Sanctuary Raid: ASPCA Rescues Over 300 Animals

On Tuesday morning, May 19, the ASPCA was on hand in Cazenovia, WI, to assist in the raid of an animal sanctuary, the Thyme and Sage Ranch. The ASPCA Forensic Cruelty Investigation and Disaster Response teams, as well as our Mobile Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) Unit, are currently working alongside the Richland County Sheriff’s Department to collect evidence and evaluate the animals found at the site. View video from the scene.

Unfortunately, our work is far from over. While these animals are finally receiving the care they need and deserve, there are still countless others that need our help. Your support makes it possible for the ASPCA to travel the country and rescue animals from horrendous conditions like these. And your generous support allows our veterinary forensic experts to assist national and local law enforcement in their efforts to build cases against and prosecute animal cruelty offenders.

With your donation today, we can send a message to those that would harm animals, “We will stop you!”

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Please ask ten friends to each ask a further ten today!

The Animal Rescue Site is having trouble getting enough people to click on it daily so they can meet their quota of getting FREE FOOD donated every day to abused and neglected animals. It takes less than a minute (about 15 seconds) to go to their site and click on the purple box 'fund food for animals for free'. This doesn't cost you a thing.

Their corporate sponsors/advertisers use the number of daily visits to donate food to abandoned/neglected animals in exchange for advertising.

Here's the web site! Please pass it along to people you know.

http://www.theanimalrescuesite.com/

AGAIN, PLEASE TELL TEN FRIENDS!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Rabbits are in ScottsVILLE, NY

Sorry for the error! The baby rabbits mentioned below will be very near Rochester, N.Y.

Did anyone see Snowball the dancing parrot on Good Morning America today? Pretty cute.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Baby rabbits will need a home

"Two of my Rabbits are giving birth soon and I was wondering if anyone would want a bunny in maybe eight weeks?"

This note appeared on the Wall of our Facebook group. Anyone interested can contact group member Jezzie in Scottsdale, NY either through the Facebook group or by writing to us at ourplacetopaws (at) aol.com.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Cockatiels need a good home

A member of our Facebook group posted this note on the page:

does anyone on here want to buy 4 cinnamon cockatiels? the 2 males talk, but the females don't. I work alot and don't really have the time to spend with them. I would like them to go to a home where someone could spend time with them and be able to let them out of their cages frequently, because they like being out, but I don't really have the time to do it. Please call me at 518-548-4909 (SERIOUS inquiries only) and someone that will take REALLY good care of them. I LOVE them, I just don't have the time for them really...

If you'd like this person's email, it's posted on the wall of our Facebook group, or you can email Faye at ourplacetopaws (at) aol.com

Monday, May 25, 2009

Our May/June updates are now online at www.OurPlaceToPaws.com. Featured is an article saying good-bye to our beloved Cali, who left us this month, causing a bit of heartbreak. But we also have some much happier updates: this month's winning reader photo, a new Animal Columnist article, a new Kids Corner art project and more.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Defenders of Wildlife Needs Your Help to Save Polar Bears

Scientists say that global warming and habitat loss could drive America's polar bears to extinction by the end of the century. Yet, so far, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar has stopped short of reversing an 11th hour regulatory change by the Bush/Cheney administration that denies polar bears important Endangered Species Act protections from the threat of global warming. I just sent a message urging Secretaries Salazar and Locke to take action for our polar bears, and I hope you will too. It's easy to help just send your message online at: http://action.defenders.org/may9deadline

Monday, May 4, 2009

Donate and Send a "Mother and Kitten" eCard to your Mom this Mother's Day!

From Alley Cat Allies"

Did you know this Sunday is Mother's Day? As the holiday rapidly approaches, we all want to find the best way to tell the important women in our lives how much we love them. We want to give them something that shows we truly understand who they are and what they cherish.
If your mother is a cat lover, there is no better gift than one that protects the beautiful animals you both love. Share your love of cats with your mother by donating to Alley Cat Allies in her honor and sending her a "Mother & Kitten" eCard on this special holiday.


Simply make a gift of at least $5 to Alley Cat Allies at our online Tribute Center and select any of our special "Mother and Kitten" eCards to send to your mother.

You'll be telling your mom (or another special woman in your life) that you care for her while giving the gift of life to cats nationwide.


Over the past 18 years, the generous support of our donors has enabled Alley Cat Allies to protect and improve cats' lives throughout the country. With your help, we can change the world for cats. So please, take part by making a donation and sending a special Mother's Day eCard today.


Thank you for your commitment to protecting and improving the lives of cats.


For the cats,

Becky Robinson, President

Monday, April 27, 2009

Animals and money: Bronx Zoo lays off hundreds of 'unpopular' animals

The Bronx Zoo, the largest city zoo in the country, is facing a $15 million shortfall, and so hundreds of animals are being evicted.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Dear Faye,

Thanks to your quick action, Congress Tuesday night passed the Great Cats and Rare Canids Conservation Act. You played a key role by contacting your representative, and I can't thank you enough. Despite an attempt by some members of the minority to rally opposition to the bill at the last minute, the NGO community was able to get the crucial support needed to get it passed.

This bill supports conservation efforts for fifteen species, including the cheetah, snow leopard, jaguar, African wild dogs, maned wolf, and several other important carnivores. IFAW will continue to advocate for the Senate version of this bill, which may go to vote in the next couple of months, at which time we may need your help again. Nevertheless, we are optimistic that the bill will become a law this year. I hope you are proud of what we were able to accomplish together to protect these magnificent and important species. You truly made a difference for animals.

Thanks again,

Fred O'Regan
IFAW President

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Flea Medications Injure 44,000 Pets

by Maria Coder

According to a new (scary) report from the Environmental Protection Agency, topical and on-spot flea and tick medications injured 44,000 pets last year. The study looked at EPA-registered pet products, commonly found at drug stores or on supermarket shelves in 2008. Sprays, collars, and shampoos – anything topical or on-spot to treat ticks and fleas - were included.

...To play it safe, you may want to skip the grocery aisle for your flea and tick products. "Stick with a product you're getting from a veterinarian," advises Dr. Matthew Cooper. Side effects caused by over-the-counter medications don't come as a surprise to veterinarians, who often urge pet owners to stick with doctor-recommended products. Read more at PawNation.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo's New Baby Wallaby Is Sticking His Neck Out To Explore The World Click HERE to read more.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Join in on The Animal Rescue Site $100,000 Shelter+ Challenge — together with Petfinder.com.

Now you can help The Animal Rescue Site choose which eligible Petfinder.com animal rescue organizations will receive special funds to help animals! Participating is simple. You can cast one vote every day for your favorite rescue.
Eligible organizations with the most votes could receive a weekly prize and/or one of the other grants below! More than 60 grants will be awarded for a total of $100,000 going to eligible Petfinder.com members by the end of July 2009.

Read more HERE.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

$25,000 HSUS ACE FEATURE DOCUMENTARY GRANT
SUBMISSION DEADLINE EXTENDED TO APRIL 17, 2009!
APPLY NOW!

For a fourth year, SILVERDOCS is joining forces with The Humane Society of the United States' Animal Content in Entertainment (ACE) Program to offer a $25,000 grant to filmmakers for the creation of a documentary of 40 minutes or more highlighting an animal issue. For more information, visit: ace-tvfilm.com.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Last Chance - Take the Challenge with Cat Cora to Stop Canada's Cruel Seal Hunt. CLICK HERE.

Friday, March 27, 2009

From the NWF

Thanks for asking Congress to pass a budget resolution that provides the tools to help safeguard our natural world for generations to come.

A strong investment in the environment will not only help to improve conditions for America's wildlife and natural resources, but also for the health, security and economic strength of our communities.

To find out more ways you can help speak up for wildlife, please visit NWF's Action Headquarters.
Sincerely,

Dominique Burgunder- Johnson
Online Grassroots Coordinator
National Wildlife Federation
alerts@nwf.org

~Inspiring Americans to protect wildlife for our children's future.~

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Help End the Cruel Canadian Seal Hunt!

Thanks to a courageous Canadian Senator, Marc Harb, there is now a Bill to end Canada's commercial seal hunt, which is expected to take the lives of more than 250,000 baby seals this year alone.

Support the historic Bill to stop the hunt! »

Imagine a Canada in which there are no more baby seals hooked and dragged onto boats while still conscious. No more seals as young as three weeks old skinned alive. No more needless slaughter of hundreds of thousands of seals each year. With the proposed seal product ban in the EU and Russia's recent ban on hunting harp seals less than a year old, this dream can soon be made a reality.

The momentum to end Canada's commercial seal hunt has never been stronger. Senator Harb wants to fill the Senate with messages of support for his Bill.

Please sign the petition today! »

Take action link: http://www.care2.com/go/z/e/AFlLF/zjYz/AVnQ3

Thanks for taking action!

Samer, ThePetitionSite