Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The lowly armadillo

I tend to write about pets. Companion animals who are furry or cuddly which you can adopt any any local shelter or rescue.
Wild animals are just as important, perhaps more since they are wild, but most people feel differently about wild critters when compared to domestic ones.
Armadillos have fascinated me since I was a kid, and I love nothing better than to watch them in the cool of an evening, burrowing for food and rifling through a bunch of leaves and bushes, almost blind with their coat of armor to protect them from predators.
Animal cruelty comes in all forms. The man in this story would probably protest loudly if another person kicked or stomped on a puppy's head. It was okay to set his dogs loose on a family though, and then do that to a baby armadillo.
Luckily, he got caught and was charged with animal cruelty. You know, cruelty is cruelty, no matter what living creature it is being inflicted on. You can read the story here.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Room with a view by Boris and Natasha

Hello to all my peeps. I like that word. I am not quite sure what it means, but it has a nice sound when I say it. (Boris thinks it sounds stupid, but what does he know? He is a male after all)
Satchel's has been busy, busy, busy this past week. I have watched dogs coming, and coming and coming. Like that Energizer bunny in reverse. We did have one little guy go home. Perhaps you read about him in that magazine? His name was Gator and he came to us almost starved to death. He filled out nicely and went home with a nice family who had just lost their dog after 8 years. I cannot imagine actually having a family and a home for that long. Boris and I have lived here for a long time. We have an extended family with lots of people, but I have heard nothing beats your own humans who you stay with all the time.
Boris has been really heckling me about my weight. He thinks I am slightly more than pleasingly plump. We have been arguing all week about it. I wonder if this is a female thing. I run and play out in the yard while he stands on the catwalk and simply surveys the territory. I know I get more exercise than he does, and he doesn't seem to hold the weight like I do. Does that happen to all you females out there? Just wondering if it was me.
Jake is back from the vet's office and he is still barking so I know he is feeling better. It was really funny because his dad came on Saturday and he was very quiet while his dad was here. Buddy, another of our permanent guests was quite peeved at his friend. She came in to volunteer and didn't spend that much time with him. He wanted her to leave everyone else alone. She tried to explain we all needed special time, but he didn't understand.
I understand one of the young rottweilers, Junior, loves to play in the water. He and Kiki, this hound mix who is adoptable, play in the yards with each other and they both love it when the pools are filled. I am not one to get soaking wet, but I think it cools them off in the heat of the day. Junior tries to swim in his water dish sometimes and make a mess in his kennel. I know the staff at first thought he was peeing all over, but it was just his water dish. I don't think he knows he can't fit his body in that dish. Maybe he is not the brightest bulb in the lamp.
Is the heat bothering anyone out there besides us dogs? I think that would be a good project for some well-meaning rich person. Figure out a way to put those cooling machines in our kennels. I know you have seen them. They are on the football field at the Bucs' games. Do you think those guys would donate a couple of them for a good cause? They all have lots of money. Could you write them and ask? I would, but I don't know how to write.
Well, I guess I will close this for now. It is almost time for a nap. I love my naps and don't want to miss one. You take care and Boris will be back next week with his take on the shelter.
Love,
Natasha
The better half of the Turbos

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Labrador available for adoption

Sammi is a 2 year old chocolate female about 60 pounds. She lost her family because of circumstances beyond her control. The family surrendered her to Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida in the hopes of finding Sammi her new and loving family.
Sammi does enjoy chasing cats but she generally is very laid back for a lab. She has lived with older children and gets along with other dogs very well. Because she lost her home it may take a few minutes for her to warm up to you but once she does she will stick by your side. She is housebroken, knows her basic commands, and enjoys riding in the car.
Sammi is happy gal but really needs a loving home. That is what she is use to and what she longs for....please come visit and take a walk, play ball, sit and hug or just look at each other. Who knows you may be the right family for this deserving labrador.
If you are interested in meeting or adopting Sammi or one of our other labs contact Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida by visiting our website http://www.labradorrescue.net/ or call 1-866-464-LABS.
LRROF has all our Labs microchipped, spayed or neutered, up to date on shots and each adoption comes with a 30 day pre-paid pet health insurance plan. All applicants will have a home inspection and vet reference (if applicable).

Listening to the "experts"

In the rescue world we hear this all the time. "So and so told me this dog is a pit mix and I can't have a pit mix so you have to take it back." It is one of the most frustrating things to hear a person say when they are returning a dog after several days because their trainer, or coach or neighbor or whoever said to them, "That's a pit mix. Why did you adopt that dog?"
Unless I am missing the boat entirely, the people who work with dogs can generally come up with the dominate breed with much better accuracy than Sally who lives next door. We are not given credit for having any knowledge of the dogs we take in or or adopt out.
Have we been wrong? Absolutely! but we are right more often than not. The only way to be 100% sure is to have a DNA test run and shelters don't have the money to spend on that when they have so many other pressing needs to be met for the donated dollars they have.
Most shelters will be as truthful on breed as they can, but a mutt is still a mutt and there is always a chance, especially in a pit-friendly area like ours, the mutt will have some pitbull in it.
If you are that worried about breeds, find the nearest breed rescue and adopt one of their dogs. They will appreciate it. Just don't treat us like we are idiots.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Another plea for adoption at Sarasota County Animal Services

I got an email with this information in it so I am sending out another plea to go and adopt if you are looking for a new companion. Many of the local rescues in the area have taken what they can and the county facility is still over flowing. Please go and check out these animals. They all deserve a chance.
Thanks,
Jean

40 dogs and 108 cats at Sarasota County Animal Services. This is DOUBLE the space they have. They are BEYOND overflowing........They have space for 20 dogs, so they are all doubled up..........
Sarasota County is run by our taxes. If you pay taxes, these are YOUR animals, and they need YOUR help. Please tell everyone about this URGENT plea to ADOPT . This is the worse it has been in a long time ! Help in any way by passing this along to anyone interested in adopting..........all Sarasota rescuers should try to help OUR local animals. THis is a shelter in need !!!!!
All shapes, all sizes, puppies, pure breeds....you name it, we got it !
Humanely,Carolyn, SDA
www.sarasotasheriff.org click on public interest, than click on animal services.

Labrador available for adoption

Natti is a 2 year old black female lab about 60 pounds who came in with her littermate sister Sammi. Natti is more outgoing than her sister Sammi. Chasing cats is one of her favorite hobbies so no cats for her.
She has lived with older children and gets along with other dogs. She is housebroken, knows her basic commands, and enjoys riding in the car. We would love to see her get adopted with her sister Sammi but it is not a requirement. A home with another dog may be best since she has never lived without a doggie best friend. Natti is with LRROF but is looking forward to having a loving family once again.
If you are interested in meeting or adopting Natti or one of our other labs contact Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida by visiting our websitewww.labradorrescue.net or call 1-866-464-LABS.
LRROF has all our Labs microchipped, spayed or neutered, up to date on shots and each adoption comes with a 30 day pre-paid pet health insurance plan. All applicants will have a home inspection and vet reference (if applicable).

Coyote and fox penning

For those of you who are transplants, you would not know foxes and coyotes, along with wolves, used to roam all over this state in abundance. There were people who hunted them, and used the normal tools such as dogs and guns.
The practice known as penning is a relatively new phenomenon, and most sportsman I know would disdain the practice.
It has apparently come to the forefront in the news again and Eric Ernst wrote a wonderful column about banning it for good in the Sarasota Herald-Tribune. Check it out here and let him know you agree.

Any dog will bite

I hate to sound like a broken record, but any dog, given certain situations will bite. The unfortunate part about this is once a dog has bitten a human, they are normally destroyed. This happens due to insurance problems since we live in such a litigious society. Everyone wants to sue for something, and the dog loses.
Most news stories in my memory are about pits or rottis or some known "aggressive" breed although a couple of years ago there was a lab who killed an infant on the east coast. So when I saw the headlines about the Shitzhu, I had to read the story. You can find it here and make up your own mind whether the dog should be destroyed, but just imagine what that child went through before you jump to judgement. I am also curious about the original owner and what the penalty was to them, except giving up the dog to be destroyed.
Stories like these make me sad. It doesn't matter what breed of dog it is. You see, I know all dogs will bite.

Labrador available for adoption

Ahoy, there! My name is Rocky and I am 9 years young and still a puppy at heart. My family fell on hard times and now I need a new home.
I love to be around people and live the active Florida life. I'm good friends with other dogs, cats and even a parrot. My foster mom taught me how to ride in a boat. I even wear a life jacket. I love to swim, go for walks and play with tennis balls. Come visit and lets play ball and go for a walk.....who knows we may be the best of friends by the end of your visit.
If you are interested in meeting or adopting Rocky or one of our other labs contact Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida by visiting our website http://www.labradorrescue.net/ or call 1-866-464-LABS.
LRROF has all our Labs microchipped, spayed or neutered, up to date on shots and each adoption comes with a 30 day pre-paid pet health insurance plan. All applicants will have a home inspection and vet reference (if applicable).

Monday, June 14, 2010

Room with a view by Boris and Natasha

Hi all you fans. Boris here with the latest and greatest from Satchel's Last Resort. I heard my friend had a great time on vacation but she was back on Saturday scoping out the kennels and asking me lots of questions.
I have some sad news. We lost another one of our sanctuary guys. Drummer was a Schnauzer but he lived in the air conditioned room we have for our dogs who are either older or really little. He was almost 17 years old and could be a little bit feisty, but he will be missed. We didn't see much of him, but we know he is gone.
I saw something really sad on Saturday, speaking of gone. My friend was taking Wooly Bully out for a walk and he stopped in front on Baxter's kennel and looked for Baxter. Mia is in his kennel now and I think he thought it was Baxter coming back. Mia isn't a Sharpei, but she is the same color and she was sleeping on the bed. I am sure Wooly misses him. He doesn't say much but the tears still come in his eyes.
We have a whole new crowd who came in over the past couple of weeks. If we keep going like this, we will have dogs hanging from the rafters. Don't you need another dog in your home? We have plenty of new ones to choose from. We even have this big girl named Mokey. She is a bloodhound mixed with a black labrador. She looks just like a bloodhound, but she is solid black. She is quite interesting and lives in a kennel with Emmitt, who is another really nice guy.
Then we have Wilbur, who looks like some kind of mastiff mix who lives with Eileen, who is a 3 legged dog. She was born that way and when you watch her and Wilbur play, you don't even know she only has 3 legs.
We have a new girl whose name escapes me, oh yeah, Madison, but she is an Airedale mix and is pretty cute. She lives with another dog who is a hound dog and came from Tampa.
Of course, we still have the two brothers, Argus and Tempo who are rotti mixes and they are really in need of a home who will take both. Mick, our little Australian Kelpie is still young, but needs to go to a really active home so he can use up some of his energy.
Sydney is a beautiful Rottweiler who had to be treated for heartworm so can't be real active, but she is super sweet.
Natasha and I have just been hanging out and watching all the goings on. We had thought things were calming down but we were sadly mistaken. We hae such a great view of all the kennels and can watch who comes and who goes. Oh yeah, and Jake, the dog who barks all the time. He has been really sick and at the vet but they found out what was making him sick and he should be able to come home soon.
Well, I will close for now. No fat jokes about Natasha today. I have to live with her, ya know, so I am keeping my mouth shut about the weight.
Get out and find you a new best friend this week. Start here at Satchel's. You can check us out online here and make arrangements to come and visit. We would love to see you.
Love,
Boris
1/2 of the Turbos

The many faces of neglect

The abuse and neglect we see on a daily basis is horrifying to most animal lovers. Many people jump to adopt an animal who has been neglected or abused because they feel sorry for the animal but there are many kinds of neglect.
This story was sent to me and it is one of the best I have read on the subject. What it doesn't say is dogs such as the one in the story, end up in shelters many times when the people simply have no use for them.
Please don't get your child a puppy unless you plan on making it a part of your family. Check out the story here.

Animal Services in desperate need of adopters

Okay, it is official. Sarasota County is overflowing with homeless pets. All the rescues are full and Animal Services is still getting in more. We are in desperate need of adopters. There is just not enough space for all the animals and when this happens, hard choices have to be made.
It is also kitten season and due to the irresponsibility of many humans in the area, the kittens are overflowing and the inn is full.
If you are thinking of adopting a pet, please, please, please visit the county shelter located past the I-75 on Bee Ridge Road and the Bee Ridge extension in the county complex and adopt an animal.
When you adopt a shelter animal, you save two lives. The life of the animal you adopt and the one who will take its' place.

AHHHH! Vacation over

Vacations are the best and when you get to spend them in one of your all time favorite spots, they are even better.
I fell in love with Key West long before it became the tourist mecca it is today. They have a tolerance for everyone, even the strange and weird folks you may see walking the streets and almost all the people who live there own a pet. Whether a cat or dog, pets are very accepted in Key West and most people take very good care of them. All the cats I saw out wandering were neutered and there were not piles of poop laying around where people didn't pick up after their dogs.
I saw two cute pit mixes with some young women and an obnoxious black lab who needed to be neutered. (which I advised his owner when the dog lunged at me, not viciously, but a lunge just the same). The prerequisite foo foo dogs were being carried around in purses or having dinner served to them at many of the outdoor eating establishments. I read in the paper every day a public service announcement with combined shelters and their dogs asking people to adopt and to spay and neuter and just when I thought how wonderful it all was, I passed a new store on Duval Street.
Dogs on Duval is a pet store where you can BUY puppies. In the window playing were an English Bulldog, a Boston Terrier, a Yorkie, a Pomeranian, a Springer Spaniel and several others. All purebred and all from puppy mills I am sure. Now the store also carried all things for dogs, but the draw was the puppies. When I got home I checked out their website, which does not say they sell puppies, but rather all the other things available. I know the puppies are the draw to get people into the store, but c'mon, they could use mutt puppies, which are just as cute. There are many shelters in the Keys which have mutts.
So, check out www.dogsonduval.com and then drop them a note and let them know you are disgusted they are selling puppies. Tourists spend loads of money in Key West and many of those tourists are animal lovers. Ask them to use shelter dogs and not puppy mill puppies. I did.

IAMS cat food recalled

I received the following email from one of the lists I belong to. It is a voluntary recall but I thought I would put it out there in case any of the readers use this kind of food.

The Procter & Gamble Company announced a voluntary recall of certain batches of its Iams canned cat food today.
Diagnostic testing indicated that the product may contain insufficient levels of thiamine, or vitamin B1, which is essential for cats. Cats that were fed these canned products as their only food are at greater risk for developing signs of thiamine deficiency.
Affected by the recall are 3-ounce and 5.5-ounce cans of Iams ProActive Health Cat and Kitten Food that carry a date stamp between 09/2011 and 06/2012 on the bottom of the can.
This recall is limited to only Iams canned cat food distributed in North America. No other Iams pet food is involved.
The company says that early signs of thiamine deficiency include loss of appetite, salivation, vomiting and weight loss. In advanced cases, downward curving of the neck, wobbly gait, falling, circling and seizures occur. Contact your veterinarian immediately if your cat is displaying any of these signs. If treated promptly, thiamine deficiency is usually reversible.
If you have purchased canned cat food with these codes, you should discard it. For further information or a product refund call P&G at 877-340-8826.

Labrador available for adoption

My name is Mandy. I am a very laid back yellow girl who found herself at Miami Dade Animal Control until the nice folks at LRRoF came and rescued me in the nick of time. How old am I? Probably about 7 or 8 years old but a lady never tells her age so we will leave it at that.
Even though I am so sweet and love people, my foster mom thinks I have had a rough life. I am a big girl at 98 pounds and quite full-figured and could probably stand to lose about 15 pounds.
I am very well behaved in the house and I walk pretty well on a leash . I don't jump on furniture or people and am not overly anxious when I am left alone. I have not met any cats yet but since I am mellow and not inclined to chase things I doubt I would find them interesting. I have met a few doggies and thought they were pretty nice and fine to hang out with but I am not overly playful. My foster mom thinks some of that may be because I am over weight or maybe because I am not sure where I am at the moment.
I am kinda interested in squeaky toys so I will probably be more playful once I settle in and lose some weight. My foster mom is very stingy at meal time and puts some veggies in my kibble. She says her recipe is called 'diet'. I gobble it up but sure wish there was a little bit more. I am gentle with everything until it comes to taking treats out of your hand...seems I am a little over excited by them. Can you blame me? I am being starved! I am looking for a low key kind of home where people will appreciate a loving Labbie like me and spoil me with love not food. I'd love to hang out and get a couple of walks a day and I suppose it would be nice if my new family would help me get my figure back... it is bathing suit season after all!
Come visit and lets take a swim. If you are interested in meeting or adopting Mandy or one of our other labs contact Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida by visiting our website http://www.labradorrescue.net/ or call 1-866-464-LABS.
LRROF has all our Labs microchipped, spayed or neutered, up to date on shots and each adoption comes with a 30 day pre-paid pet health insurance plan. All applicants will have a home inspection and vet reference (if applicable).

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Room with a view by Boris and Natasha

Hello out there in cyberspace. Boris here. Ha! Bet you thought after last week's column by Natasha I wouldn't be back? Bet you thought she hurt my feelings? Boy, were you ever wrong. She was just getting my dander up. You know, we do live in a kennel and there are times when we can become sort of lazy, being dogs and all ,so she just got me to thinking about some things and maybe putting the lazy to the side for a while, especially when I am talking about the shelter.
She, Natasha I mean, is fine by the way. She is a tough cookie and there isn't a lot I could say that could hurt her feelings. You see, she loves me and we are very bonded. I suspect we are what you humans would call siblings, whatever that means.
Well, summer arrived with a bang around here and it is hot, hot, hot. I am glad we have some cool floor to lie on and have the big door to let in the breeze. I haven't ever lived in a home, but some of the dogs in here talk about something called air conditioning. Does that come in a bottle like dog conditioner or is that something different? If it comes in a bottle, could you bring us some? I would like to squirt it in the air and see if it really cools it off. I don't understand it, but what the heck. It couldn't hurt to try.
We also have lots and lots of dogs who are available for adoption. It seems they just keep coming and coming, not like that bunny on television who keeps going and going. We have a couple of youngsters, all under a year old. We have MJ, a little retriever mix, Angel, a little border collie mix, Kiki who is some kind of hound and Dodger, who is also some kind of hound. Kiki and Dodger could be twins except she is orange and white and Dodger is black and white. My friend tells me they remind her of two other shelter dogs who now have a really good home named Gizmo and Jazz. I guess some dogs have all the luck, but we are hoping by talking about them people will call and ask for their information.
I heard someone was coming to look at Libby, who is a senior and lives in the next kennel to us but they never showed up. That seems to be Libby's luck. She did get adopted once and went home, but was back because the adopter was allergic to her. Go figure. Some dogs have all the luck. Bad luck I mean.
We did have this teeny, weeny dog named Whiskers go home. I think that he was the only one who got adopted last week but we keep trying.
Elsa used to be the fast girl in the kennel, but Kiki seems to be trying to take her place. She has two playmates now; she plays with Dodger, her kennel mate and Junior, a young rottweiler whose kennel mate Princess, got adopted.
News from the front end of the kennel is about the same. Jake is still here, but his barking is not as bad. He has been sick and I don't think he feels much like barking since Baxter is gone. Elsa and Buckeye are still in the first kennel and acting like hooligans all the time. So much energy in that kennel. Too bad we can't bottle it up and sell it to make money for the kennel. There is a new mastiff mix named Zeke in Baxter's old kennel. I still look for Baxter as I go by, even though I know he is at the Rainbow Bridge. He was just such a stately old gentleman and I miss his mug.
Well, that is it for now. I heard it may be a week or so before Natasha gets her turn again. Rumor has it the human gets to leave town for a few days on something called a vacation. I guess that means no dictation until she gets back. So until then, happy adopting from us, Boris and Natasha, affectionately called, The Turbos.
Love,
Boris