Sunday, December 26, 2010

Can Someone Help This Little Dog?

Update:  As far as we know, she's been rescued!


This cute little Schip mix, only 10 months old, has been waiting a long time - still here but Tuesday is IT for her! Can’t anyone help her??? (Local transport help available to get her to boarding or... foster)

“I would love to go home with you! Black dogs are the last to be adopted - PLEASE save me!”
DUE OUT BY 12/28/10*

Please refer to the animal’s I.D. number when contacting the shelter!
803-628-3190 or 803-818-6500

The following are standard criteria:

1. The animal has had a health check at the time they were selected for rescue, with any abnormalities noted listed in the electronic kennel record.
2. The animal appeared to be amicable towards people, other dogs and cats at the time that they were selected for rescue.
3. Other notable criteria, if any (such as basic obedience skills, appears house trained, etc.) will have been noted in the electronic kennel record.

If there is an asterisk (*) after the "DUE OUT BY" date, this indicates there is additional information regarding this animal that you may find helpful

Please contact us at (803) 628-3190 if you wish this additional information.
All information provided regarding an animal should be considered a "snapshot" window in time, to the best of our abilities, in a high intake (KILL) shelter environment.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Kroger Recalls Pet Foods Due to Possible Health Risk

Recall -- Firm Press Release

FDA posts press releases and other notices of recalls and market withdrawals from the firms involved as a service to consumers, the media, and other interested parties. FDA does not endorse either the product or the company.

Denise Osterhues
(513) 762-1304

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CINCINNATI, Ohio, - December 18, 2010 - The Kroger Co. said today it is recalling select packages of pet food sold in some of its retail stores because the products may contain aflatoxin, which poses a health risk to pets.

Kroger stores in the following states are included in this recall: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia.

The recall also includes Dillons and Gerbes stores in Kansas and Missouri; Baker’s stores in Nebraska; Food 4 Less stores in Nebraska, Illinois and Indiana (Chicago area); and Jay C, Hilander, Owen’s, Pay Less and Scott’s stores in Illinois and Indiana.

Stores the company operates under the following names are not included in this recall: Ralphs, Fred Meyer, Fry’s, King Soopers, Smith’s, QFC, City Market, Foods Co., and Food 4 Less stores in California and Nevada.

Kroger is recalling the following items:

* Pet Pride Cat Food sold in 3.5 lb. packages with a sell by date of OCT 23 11 DP and OCT 24 11 DP under the following UPC code: 1111088128
* Pet Pride Cat Food sold in 18 lb. packages with a sell by date of OCT 23 11 DP and OCT 24 11 DP under the following UPC code: 1111071357
* Pet Pride Tasty Blend Poultry & Seafood Cat Food sold in 3.5 lb. packages with a sell by date of OCT 23 11 DP and OCT 24 11 DP under the following UPC code: 1111088152
* Pet Pride Tasty Blend Poultry & Seafood Cat Food sold in 18 lb. packages with a sell by date of OCT 23 11 DP and OCT 24 11 DP under the following UPC code: 1111074580
* Pet Pride Kitten Formula Food sold in 3.5 lb. packages with a sell by date of OCT 23 11 DP and OCT 24 11 DP under the following UPC code: 1111071903
* Old Yeller Chunk Dog Food sold in 22 lb. packages with a sell by date of OCT 23 11 DP and OCT 24 11 DP under the following UPC code: 1111074566
* Old Yeller Chunk Dog Food sold in 50 lb. packages with a sell by date of OCT 23 11 DP and OCT 24 11 DP under the following UPC code: 1111074563
* Kroger Value Cat Food sold in 3 lb. packages with a sell by date of OCT 23 11 DP and OCT 24 11 DP under the following UPC code: 1111000018
* Kroger Value Chunk Dog Food sold in 15 lb. packages with a sell by date of OCT 23 11 DP and OCT 24 11 DP under the following UPC code: 1111071559
* Kroger Value Chunk Dog Food sold in 50 lb. packages with a sell by date of OCT 23 11 DP and OCT 24 11 DP under the following UPC code:1111000108

Aflatoxin is a naturally-occurring toxic chemical by-product from the growth of the fungus Aspergillus flavus on corn and other crops. If your pet shows any symptoms of illness, including sluggishness or lethargy combined with a reluctance to eat, yellowish tint to the eyes and/or gums, and severe or bloody diarrhea, please consult your veterinarian immediately.

The safety of our customers and their pets is important to Kroger. The company is using its Customer Recall Notification system to alert customers who may have purchased these recalled products through register receipt tape messages and automated phone calls. Customers who have purchased a recalled item should not use it and should return it to a store for a full refund or replacement.

Customers who have questions about this recall may contact Kroger toll-free at (800) 632-6900. For more information, please visit


RSS Feed for FDA Recalls Information10 [what's this?11]

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Carolina Tiger Rescue

This weekend we visited the Carolina Tiger Rescue in North Carolina. It was an incredible experience to learn more about tigers and other beautiful wildcats, and to see them up close. At the same time, it was sobering to hear about the conditions that some of the animals were living in before they were rescued. Laws must be passed and enforced that will make keeping, trading, or harming wildcats illegal throughout the United States (and we wish, worldwide). For more information, visit the website of this incredible non-profit organization.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Franklin the Feral Cat

Franklin has slowly been getting used to being indoors.  The vet says he has to stay inside for a week, until the stitches from his dental surgery dissolve.  After spending a bit of time under the couch, and some more time sitting and staring out the window, he suddenly discovered that being "inside" might not be so bad after all.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Franklin the Feral Cat

Franklin the Feral Cat (who is rapidly becoming less feral), recovering from dental surgery (thanks to The Cat Connection) and restricted to the house for a week.  He misses his yard (or maybe he wishes he could get out to vote!)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Franklin the Feral Cat Slowly Gets Used to Being Inside

It's been one step at a time -- first a few seconds inside, then a minute, then a half hour.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

This is really disturbing

According to the Missouri Tea Party movement, "the Humane Society of the United States has a "radical agenda" and is "misleading the public with its intentions on Prop B. The society seeks only to raise the cost of breeding dogs, making it ever-more difficult for middle-class America...n families to be dog-owners."  Read more here.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Do you have photos to send to Our Place to Paws?

Do you have pet or wildlife photos to send to Our Place to Paws?  We're running another "Reader Photo Contest."  The winner gets a free Our Place to Paws T-shirt, and the winning photo will be posted on the site, along with the Honorable Mentions.  Send your entries in to by October 15.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Who Would Have Thought....

....a few months ago we could not get anywhere near Franklin, the feral cat.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


For more than a year now, we have been caring for two or three feral cats from the neighborhood.  Now one of the cats, Franklin, has begun to really trust us.  We had a breakthrough today; Franklin let both my husband and me pet him, without any food nearby. He let us scratch his ears and pet his back.  This would have been unheard of just a few months ago. 

Before we had Franklin neutered and vaccinated with the help of The Cat Connection, he was a pretty ferocious stray cat.  He once launched himself nearly five feet up at our window and yowled at one of our indoor cats, who was sitting in the windowsill.  We saw him wandering the neighborhood, looking ragged and lean, but we couldn't get anywhere near him.  Once we saw him limping badly with a swollen elbow joint on one leg, but no effort to catch him succeeded.  We thought that was it, and were astonished a few weeks later to see him again, walking on all fours.

This was a tough cat, and he had the scars from street battles to prove it.  We were worried that his time would run out, between the danger from cars, human beings, and coyotes, and the diseases he could catch.  When some kittens were born into the neighborhood we couldn't wait anymore to take action.  We were determined to get all of the strays neutered, and the youngest ones adopted to good homes if they could be tamed.  We helped save quite a few little lives in the process.

Once we humanely trapped Franklin and had him vaccinated and neutered, everything changed.  He was too wild to be tamed and adopted into a home, but he calmed down, began spending time in our yard (we agreed to feed him and the other feral cats in exchange for participation in the program) and slowly began to gain weight, relax, and trust us.

Today Franklin avoids any confrontation with our cats, even if I bring them outside on a leash and halter.  He never attacks.  He gives way if necessary.  He snoozes on our deck, and keeps me company in the mornings when I write outside.  Petting him never seemed to be an option, but now we can even do that.

Here's the quandary: we've learned that Franklin is FIV positive, probably from his years of battles on the streets.  Cats can live a long, normal life with FIV, it is not a threat to humans, and it is not easy for cats to catch it from each other, but they can pass it on if there is a fight and a serious bite.  Our indoor cats are not FIV positive, and knowing this, we don't think we can risk trying to bring Franklin indoors, especially because one of our indoor cats is a territorial male who would never stand a chance against Franklin.

Franklin also is best buddies with a little white feral female who follows him everywhere. She is so sweet and fun, but she won't let us anywhere near her.  So if we brought Franklin in, or found him a home, we know she would be lonely.

What to do, what to do!  What if we move away some day?  I could never leave Franklin behind!  But the little white cat can't be tamed.  There are no easy answers, but for now I know this:  Franklin is healthy, happy, and well-fed, and a lot better off than he was before.  We'll figure something out.

Monday, September 6, 2010

The Future of Our Place to Paws

I've been spending some time contemplating the future of "Our Place to Paws." As regular readers know, this happens now and then.  Our little website was launched about four years ago, and in that time we have posted a lot of information about pets and wildlife, have created a Facebook Group that now has more than 330 members, have added many new "animal columnists" and have enjoyed photo submissions from friends and fans.

The truth is, though, we still don't have a major amount of visitors or blog readers on a monthly basis, because Our Place to Paws is a part-time labor of love, not a full-time business with staff.  It does cost money to keep the site running, so every few months the question comes back -- should we keep going?  Is there enough interest?

I have always believed that if even just one person is inspired to love an animal, volunteer at a shelter, or join a cause in the name of animal welfare because of our site, then all of the work and investment has been worth it.  Seeing the occasional posts and comments on Facebook shows me that there are people out there who enjoy the site.  And we have a few die-hard fans who love it and participate on a regular basis.

Every time, so far, I've considered taking the site down, I've decided against it.  I'm making the same decision this time -- keeping Our Place to Paws going for those of you out there who enjoy it.  But please tell your friends about the site, leave comments on the blog, join the Facebook Group...and if you know of advertisers who might be interested in supporting us, send them our way! 


Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Paws contest winners

Are you one of our recent photo contest winners?  Write in for your prize!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Our new content is now online!

September has come a little early to Our Place to Paws.  We've updated our website with our new content.  Who won the readers' photo contest? (Hint, we have TWO winners this month, and  one is above!).  Who is our latest new animal columnist?  What is happening with the gray wolves of the northern Rockies?

Check out Our Place to Paws and find out!!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Merrick Pet Care Recalls Texas Hold'ems 10 oz Bag (Item # 60016 Lot 10127 Best by May 6 2012) because of Possible Salmonella Health Risk

Customer Inquiries:

Merrick Pet Care, Inc. of Amarillo, Texas is extending its July 2,2010 recall of 10 oz "Beef Filet Squares for Dogs (Texas Hold'Ems)" pet treat (ITEM # 60016 LOT # 10084TL7 BEST BY MARCH 24, 2012) to also include 83 cases of "Texas Hold'ems" (ITEM # 60016 LOT # 10127 BEST BY MAY 6, 2012) because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella. Salmonella can affect animals and there is risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products. People handling the treats can become infected with Salmonella, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the chews or any surfaces exposed to these products. Consumers should dispose of these products in a safe manner by securing them in a covered trash receptacle.

Healthy people infected with Salmonella should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. Rarely, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract symptoms. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers immediately.

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans. If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian immediately.

The Beef Filet Squares (Texas Hold 'Ems) were shipped to distributors and retailers throughout the US. These individuals have been notified and have activated their recall procedures.

The treats are sold in 1Ooz plastic bags marked with "Lot # 10127 Best By May 6, 2012" on the top of the bag and on a sticker applied to the bottom.

No illnesses have been reported to date for either lot of product. A sample tested positive for Salmonella.
Consumers who have purchased 10 ounce packages of"Texas Hold'ems" are urged to return the unused portion to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact the company at 1-800-664-7387 M-F 8:00 - 5:00 CDT.


Monday, July 19, 2010

Feline's Pride Expands Nationwide Recall of its Natural Chicken Formula Cat Food Due to Salmonella Contamination

Feline’s Pride is expanding its July 1, 2010 voluntary recall of Feline’s Pride Raw food with ground bone for cats and kittens, Natural Chicken Formula, Net Wt. 2.5 lbs. (1.13 kg., 40 oz.) produced on 6/10/10 to include the product produced on 6/21/10, because it may be contaminated with Salmonella. People handling raw pet food can become infected with Salmonella, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the raw pet food or any surfaces exposed to the product.

For a COMPLETE list of recalls, go to The AVMA site also lists recalls:

For more information about the FDA's role in pet food regulation, go to

To report an adverse event associated with pet food, submit a report to the FDA at

To report an adverse event associated with other animal feeds, please contact your state FDA's Consumer Complaint Coordinator(s). Contact information can be found on the FDA's Web site at When reporting, please include as much information as possible, including the specific product name, lot numbers, veterinarian's report and diagnosis, and any other pertinent information. It is preferred, however, that you ask your veterinarian to contact the FDA, because your veterinarian can often provide additional information and details that can aid the investigation.

Enter our upcoming photo contest!

Have you ever coveted an Our Place to Paws T-shirt? How about a chicken egg painted with your own pet's portrait, done by animal artist Peggy Dey? You can choose one or the other if you enter and win the next Our Place to Paws Pet/Wildlife photo contest. Just send your entries to OurPlacetoPaws(at) (replacing the (at) with @ of course). We are planning our next website update soon, and we need more photo entries!

If you enjoy writing about animals and would like us to consider an article you've written for our home page, send us your submission.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Check out some of the pictures of amazing sea creatures recently discovered near Australia here.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

United Pet Group Voluntarily Expands Recall of Nutritional Supplements For Dogs to Include Additional Tablet and Powdered-Form Products for Dogs and Cats Because of Possible Salmonella Health Risk

Consumers Contact:
(877) 399-5226
Media Contact:
Carey Phelps (770) 360-5292

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – July 2, 2010 – United Pet Group, Cincinnati, Ohio is voluntarily expanding its recent recall of its Pro-Pet Adult Daily Vitamin Supplement tablets for Dogs to include additional pet nutritional supplement products for dogs and cats due to possible Salmonella contamination. The list of recalled products is provided at this link. The Food and Drug Administration is aware of this recall.

The recalled products are sold nationally at various retailers. The products include various United Pet Group Pro-Pet and Excel branded products for dogs and cats, and certain other private label brands of the same products. All of the affected products are in tablet and powdered form. These products are being removed from retail stores and consumers should immediately stop feeding these supplements to their pets. The affected products are those with expiration dates that include and are between "01/2013" and "06/2013." Products with expiration dates earlier than 01/2013 or later than 06/2013 are not included in this recall. The expiration date can be found imprinted vertically on the right side of the product label.

Laboratory testing has revealed that some lots of some of these products may be contaminated with Salmonella. The company is recalling the additional products out of an abundance of caution.
Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans. If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.

People who handle these products can become infected with Salmonella, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with them or any surfaces exposed to these products. Healthy people infected with Salmonella should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. Rarely, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract symptoms. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with the product should contact their healthcare providers.
Consumers who have purchased the affected products are urged to contact United Pet Group or the place of purchase for further direction. Consumers may contact United Pet Group at 1-877-399-5226, Monday through Friday, from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm EST.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Rare Kitten Taken in By Atlanta Shelter

Have you ever heard of a "Torbie?"  It's a tortoishell (black and orange) cat mixed with a striped tabby.  Torbie's are almost always female, but an Atlanta shelter got a surprise recently when the veterinarian shaved a Torbie kitten to alter, or fix it.  The kitten turned out to be a male!

To read more (including why Torbies are almost always female) and to see a pic of this adorable kitten, visit this link.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Animal Rescuer Rescues Same Dog Twice

Scruffy the canine escape artist is giving Welsh animal welfare officers a run for their money.

The 12-year-old trouble-making terrier has been rescued twice this year by the same inspector from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA), in two different parts of of the U.K., BBC News reports.  Read more at Paw Nation.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Sue Overment and Paw Nation

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Our Summer Updates are now online!

We've updated with some new summer content -- a new Kids' Corner Project, new feature article on the home page, new animal column from Barkley the raccoon, and more!

Who won the photo contest?  The winning pic is a yawner!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Good news!

Happily, I spoke too soon yesterday when I blogged about the possible loss of our little white feral cat. Today, to my surprise, she appeared again in the yard, hidden among the trees and undergrowth near the feeding station.

I have no idea where she was for two days, but she's back! It's possible that someone else in the neighborhood is leaving out food. As a matter of fact it's probable, because there is another white female, larger but otherwise almost identical down to the gray patches between her ears, who only comes to our feeding station a few times a week. She clearly has a food source somewhere else. Maybe our little girl found it.

All that matters is that she's back, and she's well. Whew!

Friday, May 21, 2010

"Grief is the price we pay for love"

For months now, a little white female cat has been a member of the small feral colony that we care for in our neighborhood. She took up residence in the insulated house we left outside in the winter, and soon called our backyard home. We have gotten used to seeing her every day, showing up in the morning for breakfast without fail, playing with leaves and bees in the yard, and waiting for her favorite companion, Franklin, the gray and white "Outdoor King." Although Franklin was quite a bruiser when we first met him, he mellowed a lot after he was neutered, and soon she followed him everywhere and gave him playful swats with her paw while he was eating.

We felt like she was our own, and were frustrated that we could never get too close to her. Lately, though, she had gotten to the point where she would relax on the roof of her little backyard house even if we were sitting out on the back deck. We watched her play with the catnip toys we left outside for her.

For two days now, we haven't seen her at all. This is extremely unusual. Franklin has been by for his daily meals, but his little friend has not been by his side. We haven't seen her in the house, and she hasn't shown up for her food. It's only been two days, but we're very worried.

I hope the explanation is a good one; maybe she has just found food somewhere else, or maybe someone even managed to bring her inside. I just hope she's alright. I walked all around the neighborhood looking for her today, but found nothing. Of course I can't just walk into other people's yards, so I couldn't cover every inch of the area.

It's hard when one of them disappears without notice. You often never find out what happened to them. What you do know is that you've lost a little piece of your heart.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Important Info for Pet Guardians

This email has been going around the Internet for a while.  Included in it is a link to more complete information from

Please share this with all the pet guardians you know and ask them to do the same - the information you take a few minutes to share might prevent the senseless loss of other pets .


Please   tell  every dog or cat guardian you know.. Even if   you don't have a pet,  please pass this to those   who do. 
Over the weekend,   the doting  guardian of two young lab mixes  purchased Cocoa Mulch   fromTarget to  use in their  garden . The dogs loved the way   it smelled and it  was advertised to  keep cats away from  their garden.  Their dog  (Calypso) decided the mulch smelled good   enough  to eat and devoured a large  helping.   She vomited a few  times which was typical  when  she eats something  new but wasn't acting lethargic in any  way.  The  next day, Mom woke up and took    Calypso out for her morning  walk . Half way   through the walk, she had a seizure and died instantly.   

Although the mulch had NO warnings printed on the  label,   upon further investigation on the company's web  site, this product is HIGHLY toxic to   dogs  and cats 

Cocoa Mulch is  manufactured by Hershey's,  and they claim that "It is true  that studies have shown that 50%  of the dogs that eat Cocoa  Mulch can suffer  physical  harm  to a variety of   degrees (depending on each individual dog).    However, 98% of all dogs won't eat    it."
*Snopes site gives  the following   information: *   

Cocoa Mulch,  which is sold by Home  Depot, Foreman's   Garden Supply and other Garden supply   stores contains a  lethal ingredient called  'Theobromine'. It  is lethal to dogs and  cats. It  smells like  chocolate and it really  attracts dogs.  They will ingest this stuff  and  die. Several deaths  already occurred in the last  2-3 weeks.

Theobromine is in all chocolate,  especially dark or baker's  chocolate which is  toxic to  dogs. Cocoa bean  shells contain potentially toxic quantities of Theobromine,   a xanthine compound similar in effects to caffeine and theophylline.   A dog that  ingested a lethal quantity of garden   mulch made from cacao bean  shells  developed  severe convulsions   and died 17 hours later. Analysis  of the stomach  contents and  the ingested cacao bean  shells  revealed the presence of lethal  amounts of  theobromine.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Animals that really could talk

There's no need to page Doctor Doolittle for this case. Here are the amazing, true stories of four animals that could speak for themselves.

Read the story from CNN here.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

We need your help to update Our Place to Paws!

Hello friends!  It's time to update our website at, but we don't have enough photo and essay entries.  Do you have a photo of a pet or of wildlife that you'd like to submit?  Send it to OurPlacetoPaws (at), substituting the (at) for the @ sign of course.  You could win an Our Place to Paws T-shirt!

What about a little poem or essay about cats, dogs, or Cats vs. Dogs?  Send it in, and we'll consider it for our summer essay contest!  Again, a T-shirt could be yours.

We look forward to receiving your entries.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Getting up close....

Franklin, also known as "The Outdoor King," let me get pretty close to him today.  He was snoozing in a part of our yard that is covered with underbrush and trees.  When I realized he was letting me get close, I returned to the house to retrieve my camera.  I've been wanting to get a good picture of Franklin for a while, because I've been worried about the discharge from his eyes.  With feral cats, of course, you can't pick them up and give them medication.   It's also traumatic for them to be trapped and taken to a veterinarian.  Unless they very obviously need medical care, you generally are forced to let them heal on their own from whatever injuries or problems they might have.  Thankfully, they are often more resilient than household cats.

With the help of these pictures, I can find out from The Cat Connection whether or not Franklin's eye discharge is a sign of infection.  If it is, we need to do something.  Debbie, who helped me capture and vaccinate/neuter Franklin about a year ago, said we might be able to slip some antibiotics into his food.

Wish us luck!  Here are the pics I finally was able to get of our boy.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Going Around the Web: A Pet's 10 Commandments

> 1. My life is likely to last 10-15 years. Any separation from you is likely to be painful. 
> 2. Give me time to understand what you want of me 

> 3. Place your trust in me. It is crucial for my well-being. 

> 4. Don't be angry with me for long and don't lock me up as punishment. You have your work, your friends, your entertainment, but I have only you. 

> 5. Talk to me. Even if I don't understand your words, I do understand your voice when speaking to me. 

> 6. Be aware that however you treat me, I will never forget it. 

> 7. Before you hit me, before you strike me, remember that I could hurt you, and yet, I choose not to bite you. 

> 8. Before you scold me for being lazy or uncooperative, ask yourself if something might be bothering me. Perhaps I'm not getting the right food, I have been in the sun too long, or my heart might be getting old or weak. 

> 9. Please take care of me when I grow old. You too, will grow old. 

> 10 On the ultimate difficult journey, go with me please. Never say you can't bear to watch. Don't make me face this alone. Everything is easier for me if you are there, because I love you so.

Take a moment today to thank God or the universe for your pets. Enjoy and take good care of them.  Life would be a much duller, less joyful experience without animals.  Now please pass this on to other pet owners. We do not have to wait for Heaven to be surrounded by hope, love, and joyfulness. It is here on earth and has four legs!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Send in your photos and Cats vs. Dogs Essays for our June/Summer Update!

Our Place to Paws will be updating our Web site at the beginning of June. If you'd like to enter a pet/wildlife photo in our reader's photo contest, send it to OurPlacetoPaws(at) (substituting the (at) for an @ of course). You can also send a "Cats vs. Dogs" essay to the same address (any writing on cats, dogs or cats vs. dogs). Winners recieve a T-shirt or specially painted egg by animal artist Peggy Sigler Dey (

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Over 2 and a half million "hits"

I was amused today, after watching a video of an incredibly cute kitten falling asleep on YouTube, by one of the comments underneath the video.  Someone wrote something to this effect:  "What I think is amazing is that more than 2 million people have watched a video of a kitten falling asleep."

It's so true; if you search "cute kittens" or "cute puppies" on YouTube, you can come up with videos that have been watched by millions of people from all over the world.  And why not?  What lifts your day more than a few seconds watching a cute puppy or kitten?  What represents innocence, and joy, and love more than a baby?  Such videos are one minor thing that can unite people from around the globe.

I, for one, will keep watching these videos, especially in moments when I feel down.  My own kittens are all grown up now, and as precious and cute as I think they are as adults, I can always get my "kitten" fix with just a few clicks.  In fact, I never seem to get tired of watching this one.

Here's the video:

Monday, April 19, 2010

Duncan spends his morning at the windowsill

This little Scottish Fold loves to chatter at the small flock of birds that settles into a bush just outside the office window. It doesn't hurt that his perch is on top of the radiator, which is nice and warm on a cool morning.  I call it his "sauna."

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Tug of War!

We've been away for a week -- a trip to Colorado and New Mexico. More blog entries soon, but in the meantime, here are a couple of animal-friendly pictures from our travels!  A tug of war between Italian Greyhounds Stella Blue and Sirius (no, that is NOT a real cat!  It's a toy), and Nikolai the Borzoi poking his head into the picture when we awoke to snow in Denver.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

They're still going strong

I keep trying to take good pictures of the three neutered, vaccinated feral cats who are now living well in a small network of backyards in our neighborhood, getting their food and water from our feeding station.  The problem is that whenever I open the door and try to step onto our back deck to take a picture, the cats run off and either disappear behind a fence or hide under the leaves of an evergreen tree.  It's amazing to me that after all this time (it must be nearly a year now), they don't understand that I would never harm them.  Don't they recognize the person who has been venturing out in all kinds of weather to make sure their food is set out every morning and their water is clean?  Not even the little one who has taken up permanent residence, apparently, in the small insulated house supplied by The Cat Connection, will let me near her.  The other day I saw her snoozing in the doorway of the little house, waking now and then to look out and watch the rain.

Still, I'm relegated to standing inside my kitchen and taking photos with a zoom lens through the kitchen window.  It's torture!  How I'd love to be able to go outside and give them each a big hug.