Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Downtown Bradenton facility helps animals get exposure

This is a great article about Manatee County Animal Services and all they are doing to increase their adoption numbers and lower the number of euthanasias which are done each year. Having animals stay in the downtown facility for a week allows residents in downtown Bradenton the opportunity to see the animals being walked, and as all excercise does, calms them down when they get back to their kennels.
Kudos to Manatee County. Each animal saved is important. Good job.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Adopting an FBD

For the uninitiated in dog breeds in Florida, an FBD is a Florida Brown Dog. Now, if you live in another state, you probably have the same version of the breed, maybe a Georgia Brown Dog or a Tennessee Brown Dog.

When I was little, I thought there was an actual breed of dog call the Florida Brown Dog but I know better now.

The reason I am bringing these dogs up once again, is I have had the occasion to spend some time around my sister's dogs, which include Romeo, a rescued Pekingese, Wilbur a rescued Shi Zhu and then the best in my opinion, Hickory, a Florida Brown Dog.

Although the other two are cute, Hickory is, in my humble opinion, the best of the 3. I have found that to be true for most of his breed. He has some lab, some hound (in this case catahoula) and probably some ridgeback. He is of medium height and weight, much like my Buzz. He does not have the black muzzle, indicative of a cur, but instead has a white chest and speckled legs.

Hickory, like Buzz, loves just about everything. Kids, cats, other dogs and especially people. All people. He is not shy and once you scratch his back, you are in for the win. These dogs also are very intelligent. I don't know if they simply get the best DNA from the breeds that are mixed together, but they are not dumb dogs.

He doesn't realize he weighs 60 pounds, thinks he is a lap dog, his tail wags all the time and if you were ever threatened, he would probably chase someone down and bite them, but only if you were threatened.

There are many hundreds of FBD's in this area who are looking for a good home. Most of them will make fabulous editions to any household. Please check them out when you are thinking about adopting a new friend and companion.

Nomee is a FBD at Satchel's Last Resort. This is what they say about her:

We don’t know anything about Nome's past except that she was picked up as a stray in Naples and that she was born around March of 2009. It looks like she has Belgian Malinois, Black Mouth Cur and Lab in her. She is tall but not stocky.
She is cute as can be, sweet, energetic and crate trained. She’s housebroken and knows how to use a doggie door.
She’s is great with other dogs, but likes to chase cats. She’s an enthusiastic jumper so any children in her life should be older.
Nome is an all around great young dog.
We don’t know anything about Nome's past except that she was picked up as a stray in Naples and that she was born around March of 2009. It looks like she has Belgian Malinois, Black Mouth Cur and Lab in her. She is tall but not stocky.
She is cute as can be, sweet, energetic and crate trained. She’s housebroken and knows how to use a doggie door.
She’s is great with other dogs, but likes to chase cats. She’s an enthusiastic jumper so any children in her life should be older.
Nome is an all around great young dog.

Please consider taking a trip to visit with Nomee. She might be just the FBD you are looking for.

Contact Satchel's Last Resort at comment@satchelslastresort if you think you could offer her a forever home.

Cats from hoarder looking for homes

If you are looking for a new cat or kitten to add to your family, check out this article from Bradenton Patch. They have 60 or so cats and kittens rescued from a hoarder situation all ready for a new home. Could it be yours?

Remembering my Daddy

I know many, many people who do not realize my father served for 20 years in the military. I alos know many people who do not know he died from his exposure to Agent Orange and the four types of cancer it caused to grow in his body.
I don't have any flags posted outside my door. I don't have one hanging from my garage. My truck has a HSUS magnet and a "Wally's" bar in Orlando bumper sticker. This doesn't mean I do not honor each and every one of them.
Today, SSGT J.L. Watkins will be honored as a soldier but he was so much more. He was a husband and a father. He grew up in rural Florida while citrus was still king. He graduated from Summerlin Institute (now Bartow High School) and joined the Army after being in the National Guard for two years. He served for twenty, retired and came home to enjoy his retirement. He didn't get to enjoy it for long. He along with my Mom, taught me to love and respect animals.
When I was nine, he took me horseback riding on post in Ft. Gordon, Georgia. You see, I loved horses as a young girl and we couldn't move one from army post to army post, so Daddy did the next best thing. We had a myriad of cats and dogs while I was growing up for it seemed one of us kids were always bringing something home.
This is a day to honor the military who lost their lives for this country. My Daddy was one of them. So even if you don't see a flag draped somewhere in my yard or on my car, never doubt I honor the men and women of the armed forces each day. There are many who are still suffering from situations which occured during their service time but this one is for you Daddy. I miss you.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Beautiful German Shepherd needs a home

This is a courtesy listing on Satchel's Last Resort's webpage and adoption listings. Please contact them directly using the information below.

Phoenix is a 6 year old male pure-bred German Shepherd. He is neutered and also has an identifying tattoo in his ear. He is black & tan/red. He weighs about 80 pounds, he is on the leaner side for a male but in great shape. He is all up to date on his vaccinations as well.
Phoenix may be 6 years old but thinks he is still a puppy. He loves to be the center of attention and be part of the family. He enjoys long walks the best but also likes playing outside. He has a high drive so he needs to have a "job." If he doesn't get enough attention he may opt to chase his tail instead. He's played this game since he's been little and it most likely won't stop. However, when he is entertained or exercised this behavior is almost non-existent.
He likes other dogs especially smaller ones. He also gets along well with children. He sometimes doesn't know how big he is and can knock little ones down. Phoenix loves to be loved - scratch his belly, brush his hair, pat his head, rub his ears. He relishes all of this & more. Phoenix would do well on a large farm or several acres of land. But for the right family he'll fit in just about anywhere.
Phoenix needs a new home because our family is expanding again (#3 on the way) and we do not have the time & attention Phoenix needs and deserves. Plus my husband has had 3 knee surgeries and cannot take him on walks like he used to. With 2 working parents and soon to be 3 kids under the age of 4, there is hardly enough time in the day as it stands. We truly battled with this decision for months but we can't be selfish and we have to do what is best for Phoenix. He has plenty of life left!
Contact Information:
Courtney Wilson, Sarasota, FL
E-mail inquires are preferred but you may also call, 941-914-3342 (Courtney) or 941-928-6867 (Neil)
This is a courtesy listing so please do contact Courtney and Neil directly.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Life is good

Pekoe is the shelter cat at the DV shelter I work for. He was apparently picked up as a feral and altered along with his shots etc. in one of the many programs which operates in Manatee and Sarasota County.

There have been numerous articles written about the psychology of therapy pets. You can do a search on any internet search engine and read about the value of pets and the interaction they have with victims of abuse or the sick or elderly. I myself, believe my mother's pending death was hastened due to the death of her little rescued dog, Jordan.

So when we adopted Pekoe at our shelter, we knew he would have a calming influence on the residents, many who are coming to us from very volitile situations.

Pekoe now has any number of residents, adults and children alike, paying attention to him. He is well fed, has medical care and comes and goes as he pleases.

This photo was taken while he was taking a nap on top of my desk in the office. He does like to nap in between chasing things and has become very protective of this shelter, even running off other cats from our enclosed building.So never doubt all ferals are not true ones, despite what the clipped ear may say to you. Life is good for Pekoe.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Severely emaciated female hound needs home

Many, many sad stories cross my path each day, but this one really broke my heart. I love hounds and to see one in this condition because some human (dare I call them that) dumped them or simply would not care for them simply turns my stomach.

She is an older, female, Walker Hound and she is located in Walton County Animal Control. If there is anyone reading this and she has not been euthanized, please try and pull her and get her in a foster home. My heart just breaks for these dogs.

Please call 850-892-8682 in DeFuniak Springs, Florida and see can we save her.

Abuse registry for pets

Because I am so involved in the rescue of animals and my job involves victims of domestic abuse, the parallels of the abuse of animals and victims are many.
This article shows how many domestic violence shelters are now allowing victims to bring their pets with them, but also how animal abusers also abuse humans.
It is interesting reading.
Check it out.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Despite disabilities law, confusion reigns over service dogs

I found this interesting story about service dogs online. I am amazed at the number of businesses who have no idea what the laws are and continue to deny access to people and their service animals.
Check it out here.
Guidelines for businesses on service animals

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Project KITT


NAPLES, Fla. - In honor of Flag Day, Tuesday, June 14, 2011, and Military Working Dogs (MWDs), Bamboo CafĂ© French Home Cooking will host a canine companion dinner to benefit Project KITT (K-9’s Involved in Targeting Terrorism) beginning at 5:30 p.m. Bamboo Cafe will offer a three-course prix fixe dinner for $23.95 and serve signature cocktails for $5.00 each, with proceeds benefiting Project KITT.
The first event in “The Dog Days of Summer” series, the “Patriotic Puppy” dinner will raise awareness for Project KITT. The non-profit assists U.S. MWD Teams deployed to Iraq, Afghanistan, the Horn of Africa and other areas of the world fighting terrorism by purchasing needed equipment and supplies, such as dog goggles (“Doggles”), dog booties, and 30-foot nylon leads."This is a unique opportunity to get badly needed equipment directly to Military Working Dog (MWD) handlers who work with patrol, explosive, and mine detector dogs," said Project KITT Founder and Florida resident Alan Kalfus.
Well-behaved pooches are invited to attend the event and may wear red, white, and blue. A prize will be awarded for the most patriotic dog. Several dog related items will be raffled off and a 50/50 drawing will also be held. Project KITT will be selling Stars and Stripes bandannas for $5.00 the night of the event.
Seating is limited. For additional information or reservations, please call 239-643-6177. See Welcome to Bamboo Cafe in Naples Florida! for address and directions.

Having mixed feelings on out-of-area rescues

Sometimes, just when I think I have this all straight in my head, I read another story about a humane society or rescue group bringing in dogs from out of state. Then my brain starts working overtime again on whether this is a good or bad idea.
I am all about saving as many animals as possible. My problem lies in how many animals in our area, given a chance, could find a home if more time was dedicated to them. Bring in puppies and small dogs from out of state, and they find a home first. Which is a good thing, but the animals who are already waiting, some for months and months, could either continue to wait or be euthanized because there are no available homes.
So what are your thoughts? You cannot tell me there are not puppies and small dogs in the state of Florida which need rescuing. There are also hundreds of medium and large sized dogs whose only fault is their size or where they happened to be born. These are euthanized because there aren't any homes for them.
Can we not, as a compassionate and empathetic society, figure out how to find these dogs homes before we begin importing other dogs from other states? Maybe there are some spots where people actually like medium or large dogs where we can send them and assure them a home?
Mixed feelings? You betcha. Will the puppies and small dogs die in the state they are coming from? Probably. So who actually wins? Like I said, very mixed feelings.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

A Man and His Dog Going to Heaven

A man and his dog were walking along a road. The man was enjoying the scenery, when it suddenly occurred to him that he was dead. He remembered dying, and that the dog walking beside him had been dead for years. He wondered where the road was leading ...them. After awhile, they came to a high, white stone wall along one side of the road. It looked like fine marble...At the top of a long hill, it was broken by a tall arch that glowed in the sunlight. When he was standing before it he saw a magnificent gate in the arch that looked like mother-of-pearl, and the street that led to the gate looked like pure gold. He and the dog walked toward the gate, and as he got closer, he saw a man at a desk to one side. When he was close enough, he called out, "Excuse me, where are we?" "This is Heaven, sir," the man answered. "Wow! Would you happen to have some water?" the man asked. "Of course, sir. Come right in, and I'll have some ice water brought right up." The man gestured, and the gate began to open. "Can my friend," gesturing towards his dog, "come in, too?" the traveler asked. "I'm sorry, sir, but we don't accept pets." The man thought a moment and then turned back toward the road and continued the way he had been going with his dog.
After another long walk, and at the top of another long hill, he came to a dirt road leading through a farm gate that looked as if it had never been closed. There was no fence. As he approached the gate, he saw a man inside, leaning against a tree and reading a book. "Excuse me!" he called to the man. "Do you have any water?" "Yeah, sure, there's a pump over there, come on in." "How about my friend here?" the traveler gestured to his dog. "There should be a bowl by the pump." They went through the gate, and sure enough, there was an old-fashioned hand pump with a bowl beside it.
The traveler filled the water bowl and took a long drink himself, then he gave some to the dog. When they were full, he and the dog walked back toward the man who was standing by the tree. "What do you call this place?" the traveler asked. "This is Heaven," he answered. "Well, that's confusing," the traveler said. "The man down the road said that was Heaven, too." "Oh, you mean the place with the gold street and pearly gates? Nope. That's hell." "Doesn't it make you mad for them to use your name like that?" "No, we're just happy that they screen out the folks who would leave their best friends behind."
By: The Positive Pit Bull

Pet rescue and social media

Anyone who regularly uses any social media to connect to the rest of the world realizes the impact it has on people and animals.
I found this very interesting article with stories of the impact it has had, whether for adoption or raising money.
Check it out here and get posting.

KCMO moves animals due to sickness

With the shelters and rescues being so overcrowded, it did not surprise me to read this story out of Kansas City, Missouri.
A disease outbreak has caused numerous deaths of dogs and cats. The animals are now being moved so the shelter can clean.
Please consider adopting from your local animal rescue organization. The animals need our help now.

Making pet arrangements

One of the discussions on the blog over and over again was making arrangements for your pet in case. In case you must go to the hospital, in case you must leave in an emergency situation or in case you lose your life. Your pets have no option but to go where humans take them.
I was sad to see this story where a man lost his dog to a new family because proper arrangements were not made.
This is a sad story and it could happen anywhere.

Do You Love German Shepherds?

It is at times likes this I wish Daddy was still living. You see, my father adored German Shepherds. The problem with that was 3 kids who loved all kinds of animals. My brother, sister and I tended to bring home strays of all kinds. Most were mixed breeds someone had dumped out somewhere and with that being said, Daddy only owned one German Shepherd his whole life. This was before I was born and the dog, in a freak accident, was struck by lightning. He would have adored Kumba but as it was, he was content to accept all the strays his children brought home.

Kumba has not had a good life. She was sentenced to living outside, to bear litter after litter of puppies, and never know what a loving home was like.

She is 6 years old, has a very sweet and quiet nature, gets along well with other dogs although young and bouncy ones make her nervous and doesn't seem to care about cats. She does well in her kennel and would actually do well in a family who would be content to walk her each day.

If you are looking for a nice, settled dog whose wants are not great, simply a family to show her kindness and love, then please contact Satchel's Last Resort at comments@satchelslastresort.com and inquire about Kumba. She just needs some love from a family who appreciates companion animals to become a great companion.

Awesome dog for adoption

My schedule has been tight the last several weeks and I am behind in posting some great dogs who are available for adoption.

I met Duffy two weeks ago at Satchel's Last Resort, took him for a walk and we became fast friends.

He is a puppy still, despite his large size and is not yet a year old. He weighs about 80 pounds and is part Rottweiler, part Catahoula Leopard Hound which makes him a combination of two great breeds of dogs.

He has the Rottweiler size, but is speckled and dappled like a catahoula. He is shy at first, but once he meets you and knows you, he becomes a velcro dog who loves backscratches and playtime.

If you are looking for a wonderful, young, big dog to join your family, please consider Duffy who would like a second chance at a loving home.

Please call 941-924-5070 and ask about Duffy. He is going to make someone an awesome dog for life.

Monday, May 9, 2011

One for the birds

I have written before of the multitude of wildlife which can be observed in my backyard. Many of the critters come out only at night and if you are not looking for them, you will not even know they are there.
Days are a different story. Two weeks ago a beautiful osprey landed under the orange tree and sat there watching while Jeremy and I were working in the yard. I am not sure why it was watching us, but it obviously felt comfortable enough to stay for a few minutes before flying away.
I, of course, continue to have a million squirrels despite the fact I have two rodent chasing dogs living in the house now. (Buzz could care less but Hazel and Kinzie love to try and catch squirrels)
I also have a wide variety of birds. I like birds. I have so many I wonder sometimes how they find enough to eat in my backyard. Of course, a pair of cardinals have now decided to make a nest in my seagrape. I have other trees in my yard and why they picked the seagrape is anyone's guess but the nest is on a branch which looks like if the wind blows, the nest will fall. I noticed them the past couple of days flying to and from with small twigs in their beaks.
The nest is made up of small twigs, Spanish moss and dog hair, probably from the piles I sweep out of my house.
I guess they know better than I where they want their nest to be. I just hope I don't wake up to a baby cardinal laying on the pool deck. I want them all to be happy and healthy to come back and build their own nest next year.

Book review and interview with Wayne Pacelle

I found this book review and interview of Wayne Pacelle on the Miami Herald website. I will preface this by saying I am not a fan of Mr. Pacelle. I believe he has done a tremendous job of bringing animal cruelty to the forefront in the United States but is misguided in many of his decisions concerning day by day cruelty. His concentration is on the big picture, but decisions such as relieving Michael Vick from his responsibilities after his conviction by saying he believed he was remorseful simply reeks of 15 minutes of fame to me. I still am not convinced of Vick's sorrow but that is another column.
Many people do not feel the same way I do. This article is for them.

University of Florida vets save cat that had arrow through chest

UF vets do it again. If you ever doubt the University of Florida has one of the top vet schools in the country, try tracking how many times they save animals which for all intents and purposes should not survive. The cat is now looking for a home.

Pennsylvania city's feral cat policy draws protests

Now we have another city who wants to trap and kill all the feral cats. The experts will tell you this will not stop the feral cat population, only free up space for other cats to move in. Funny how PETA believes these cats should be euthanized and is even working with the city to find a vet to kill the cats.
Thank goodness we live in a little more progressive area although up until last year, Sarasota had the same policy. It took a lot of work from the animal lovers in this area to get the county to change its' mind. Maybe they will have the same kind of luck in Pennsylvania. Check out the story here.

Two Polk County Residents Charged With Animal Cruelty

It always saddens me to read stories like this one. The reason I always link them is because I want my readers to stay aware of how prevalent cruelty to animals is in this state and how much work still needs to be done.
I grew up in Polk County and can tell you it is the 5th largest county in land area in the state. Lakeland is the largest city in the county but Bartow is the county seat. There is a lot of land in Polk that is undeveloped and there are a lot of cruelty cases and dogfighting cases which come out of there. Thankfully, these two people were charged with four felonies and three misdemeanors. Sadly, they found several dead puppies.

Environmental protections won't be limited by state boundaries

I have often wondered about the protections offered by the federal government concerning species which cross state lines. According to this story, the previous admininstration might protect a wolf in Wyoming but if it crossed state borders, say into Idaho, it might not be protected. This makes no sense to me. I always figured if the federal government had protections on a certain species, it would be protected across state borders.
So I am glad the present administration will protect the species regardless of the state it has traveled to.

Room with a view

Hello once again from Boris and Natasha at Satchel's Last Resort. We know we have been a little slow in getting a new column in, but the friend of ours who actually writes this has been very busy with other stuff which includes boyfriends and family but not dogs, so blame her and not us.

We are crowded, crowded, crowded. We have been here for quite a few years and although we have been crowded before, we don't think we have ever seen this many dogs come through our door all at the same time.

We, being the Turbos, have a special kennel just for us with the big window, hence the name of our column, "Room with a view" but some of the newer dogs are having to double up and take on a roommate. Luckily, we live together but we know each other. Some of these guys are perfect strangers. Of course, the hope if we can find these guys homes quickly, before they become too attached to their kennel, or their roommate for that matter.

We have this big female German Shepherd named Kumba. I guess she was found totally neglected and the rescue took the other two which were found with her, but didn't have room for her. She looks sad but is a beautiful dog.

We also have this new guy, Duffy, who is a rottweiler/catahoula mix. He is only 10 months old but is a big boy. I heard our friend fell in love with him. He is a little shy, but once he gets to know you he is a velcro dog.

We also have this little dog who is a senior citizen. She is listed as a shih tzu but we have never seen him. I think he lives in the room with all the other small dogs. Like I said, we have lots and lots of dogs in every size and shape.

Susie, one of our pitbulls got adopted with a truck driver. I guess she is going to ride shotgun with him. did we ever tell you how much we love car rides? We like them a lot. If you ever become a volunteer with us, maybe you can take us for a ride. Miss Caroline, who is one of the volunteers like to take us. We never turn down car rides.

Well, the weather is gorgeous, not too hot or too cold. It seems the perfect time to come and adopt a dog. Please remember us and if you can't adopt, we can always use volunteers to help walk us. Check out the website to see what you need to do to volunteer or donate. We would love to meet you. Until then we will remain.

Boris and Natasha

The Turbos

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Marion County's have and have nots

I watch the Kentucky Derby every year. I don't have a clue why, but it probably has something to do with watching Secretariat run when I was in high school and fall in love with the race. I already loved horses, so to see those beautiful, well taken care of horses race was thrilling. I continue to watch and am always interested when a winner is either bred or trained in Florida, since Marion County is one of my favorite places to visit with its' rolling hills and acres of horse farms.
I was please Animal Kingdom won the Derby and I wish him luck in the Triple Crown. He was, after all, trained in Marion County. Imagine my dismay when I saw the next story about the dogfighting ring.
Of course, I am sure Marion County does not want to be associated with dogfighting, but there are parts of the county which border Ocala National Forest and that means acres and acres of land with run down houses and trailers parked in the middle. The only access are dirt roads and no trespassing signs are scattered throughout. These places are a far cry from the million dollar horse breeding operations and they busted one.
You can check out the story here and the slide show here and then if you can offer any help to Marion County Animal Services, please do. The dogs will not be released until after the court date and some, (probably many) will be deemed unadoptable, but at least they have been removed from the horrific life they were leading.

My Mom, the animal lover

Mother's Day is celebrated in many ways by many people and their moms.
I can attribute my love and respect for animals directly back to my parents, especially my Mom and for that I tell her I love her every single day.
There were always animals in my home growing up. Mostly dogs, but occasionally I was allowed to own a cat. My dad didn't like cats, but Mom was always willing to let us adopt a stray.
Mom's first dog when she was a little girl was a pit bull named Ginger. Ginger was a boy, but he was ginger colored so Mom got to name him. She was 7 years old. She taught Ginger how to retrieve the newspaper and all the other tricks kids showed dogs how to do back then. Of course, this was when kids and dogs seemed destined to go everywhere together. Ginger went to the beach in Clearwater, to the lakes in Lakeland, and everywhere my Mom went. He slept with her at night and she says she cried like a baby when he died her senior year in high school.
The other dogs in the household were cocker spaniels, which my grandmother loved, but Ginger was always Mom's dog.
Even as the wife of a career military man with 3 kids, my mother had a dog. The thought never entered her head to give up one or not to have one. The dog which stayed with us the longest was Blackie, who was a border collie mix. He traveled from Oklahoma to Florida, back to Georgia, then back to Florida when my father retired. Mom was the caretaker and when Blackie died after 17 years, my mother cried and cried.
There were two other dogs in the house at that time, Bigfoot and Ping. There were always dogs in my house.
After Daddy died, Mom let the pack whittle down to one dog, which she always kept until about 6 months ago. When her last little dog, Jordan crossed the Bridge, she made the decision she was not able to care for another dog full time. She is being cared for by Hospice now, but is still in her own home so my sister and I have made a pact to take our dogs over to visit as often as possible. Since my sister lives next door, that is not a problem for her, and Buzz rides with me when I go to Lakeland to visit.
So Mom gets to visit with Romeo, a rescued Peke, Wilbur, a rescued Shih Tzu, Hickory, a rescued Hound/Labrador and my Buzz.
So on this Mother's Day, which may be the final one I get to talk to my Mom, I thank her for many things. Most of all, I thank her for blessing me with a love of animals. I wish all kids could be so lucky as to have a Mom like mine.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Not so good memories

This weekend is the HSUS convention in Orlando. I am not attending. I would have gone, but could not get the time off or the money to attend. The last time the HSUS was in Orlando was four years ago. I attended for the whole convention, learned so much from the seminars, had a nice weekend away and lost Bubba. This was my tribute to him and I will re-run it every year as long as I need to, which means as long as I do this blog. All rescuers have a Bubba. Read about mine below.

In memory of Bubba
There is a small, Hallmark tree ornament which sits on my desk at work. When you flip the switch, it plays "Bad to the Bone." It was given to me the Christmas after Bubba was euthanized, by another volunteer. She would leave red lip prints on his white coat from loving kisses. That was the kind of dog Bubba was.

It has been a little over 2 years since that day we discovered Bubba was killed. If you are a new reader to my blog, you don't know Bubba, so let me tell you about this wonderful, obnoxious, young, loving, pain in the ass, Mr. personality pitbull who stole our hearts.

When he was brought to the previous rescue I volunteered at, it was determined he would be killed. He believed everything which swung, whether it be arms, a ponytail, or a rope should be grabbed with his mouth and then would not let go. We thought he had been kept in a barn as part of a training program for fighting dogs and the only time any attention had been paid to him, was when he grabbed and didn't let go. But, Bubba wasn't a fighter and whoever owned him couldn't make him one, so he ended up in a shelter and certain death.

A volunteer, wise in the ways of dogs, made him a project dog. This was to show people training would work and Bubba could be a productive member of society. So, despite many bruises and scratches during this period, we all worked towards this goal.

Guess what? It worked. He was extremely smart and loving and after a couple of weeks, he improved. As his training improved, he got even better. He was fearless of the agility or any other game you could invent. Martina Navratilova even took him through his paces.

He was adopted and unfortunately, left in a backyard, chained to a tree, with little interaction with people. He ended up getting into trouble by chewing all the wires under the motor home so he was returned. We think he may have been hit, because he cowered and was afraid, like his spirit had been broken.

We went to work again and Bubba was once again adopted to a nice young man and his girlfriend. When we saw him several weeks later, it was obvious he was loved and he adored his new owner. Enter a new puppy into the mix, and Bubba was put on the back burner because the puppy got all the attention. So he once again began eating clothes and destroying things in the house and was returned.

The problem was he was not returned to us and went to a different shelter. They did not know Bubba's history and he was a pit bull, so he was euthanized before we got the note he had been taken to this shelter. No one checked his microchip to get him back to us.

Bubba convinced more of us than any dog I know, to keep fighting to stop the needless killing of shelter pets for preconceived notions about breeds and temperment.

In memory of Bubba, please continue to speak out for the animals. They have no voice except for the humans who loved them. Please volunteer your time if you can. Donate goods and services and help us all in our mission to stop the overcrowding and needless killing of companion animals. Please do it for Bubba's memory.

Medium-sized dog needs home

Mindin is a medium-sized, black labrador/whippet who needs a home. She was pick up as a stray but according to her foster mom, is crate trained, housebroken, trustworthy out of the crate and an all around great dog. She weighs 35 pounds and is estimated to be around a year old.

If you would like to find out more about Mindin and/or set up an appointment to meet her, please call Whitney at 941-545-0817 or send her an email: whitney.deem@gmail.com.

Great for pet owners

This is a great offer. If you can't use it, please pass it on.
Gold Coast Greyhound is offering a FULL 6 MONTHS of heart worm, flea and tick medication for a donation of $99.
If you have interest, contact Joanne Email: joanne.wuelfing@gmail.com or call her at: 941-371-1146.

Max needs a home

This guy in the Miami area really needs a home. Take a look at that face! Is that not the cutest ever?
Max was dumped at animal control 6 months ago and was fortunately rescued and is alive to talk about it. He is a St. Bernard/Sharpei mix weighing in at 80 lbs and just under 2 years old. Max loves toys, throws treats in the air & plays with them before eating them, etc. LOVES to snuggle with his head & will get up beside you or throw himself at you with his body for hugs. LOVES to run around yard in a couple of short bursts but gets winded from size after a bit. LOVES walks. Is not aggressive with other dogs, but can't say that he would welcome a feline in his house. Max needs a home of his own very soon as the foster mom is not able to keep him any longer. Please call Lee Ann 305 479 9274 or Kathy 305 401 4693 .

Friday, May 6, 2011

What is the neighborhood coming to?

I live in a pretty developed area of Sarasota but we have a couple of ponds placed strategically in the neighborhood. These are pretty wild ponds and are not landscaped to the nth degree like some water spots I can name, so the wildlife are attracted to it.
Last week while I was walking Buzz at the end of my street, I saw a disturbing sight. Someone had caught a small alligator, maybe three feet long at the max and hung it on a fenceline between the road and a brushy area which borders one of the small ponds. This was not a professionally trapped alligator but instead, looked like some kids had caught him, wrapped a rope around his mouth and hung him from the fence to die. Was he living in one of the small ponds? Probably. Should he have been caught and hung on a fence to die a slow death? Absolutely not. Had the proper authorities been called, he could have been relocated somewhere before he increased in size and no one would have to worry about him eating a small dog.
Being a native, I am used to alligators in fresh water. They all live there even if you never see one. The main swimming hole in my hometown had too many to count but we would have NEVER attempted to catch one and then hang it on a fence to die. I would have received a whupping if I had even thought about doing something like that.
So tonight as I was beginning my walk, a pretty good-sized soft shell turtle was trying to cross my road from the pond on the other side. I quickly got him turned around and headed back to his pond. I didn't want some kids deciding he would be the next one to hang.

Calling all shelters and rescues

This is a shout out to all the rescues and shelters in the Charlotte, Manatee and Sarasota area. Please send me any and all of your animal news, events, adoptions, etc. via email at jeanfaulk22@gmail.com and let's see if we can increase the adoptions in our area.
This blog is only as good as the information sent to me and I know everyone is bursting at the seams with animals. I would much rather post a photo of an adoptable animal with your contact information than to listen to myself preach about euthanasia, spay/neuter, training and all the other animal topics I talk about.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Overcrowding is being seen all over

Overcrowding of animal shelters is becoming the norm in southwest Florida. All the rescues and shelters I know of are bursting at the seams. The end result, of course, is euthanasia, which none of us like to talk about.
This story about the Naples shelter brings this problem right up to us. They have 96 animals on their waiting list much like the shelters around here do. They only have so much space and so much money. The end result is euthanasia simple because there are too many animals.
If you are looking for a new pet to become a member of your family, please visit your local rescue or shelter and opt to adopt and if you know of anyone who has an unaltered pet, please encourage them to have them spayed or neutered. We need to stop this endless killing of animals simply due to the overpopulation caused by human apathy.

Keeping up with the rescues

After my blog post about people who read the blogs, I received a note from one of my readers who had begun following me after I published an item on a particular rescue but then let me know I had not written anything about this rescue in a long while.
This is for clarification about the rescues I write about. If you have or know of a shelter or rescue in the area who would like to be on my blog, great, send them on. I will feature pets and pictures of pets who need homes.
If you have an event you would like featured, send that as well and I will be happy to post it up.
I write more frequently about rescues and shelters which I visit because I see what needs to be written about, but depend on the others to email me the information they want posted.
There are simply too many rescues in this area for me to spend time with each one each week and work etc. I am dependent on them to keep me informed.
Some rescues begin like gangbusters and then over time, slack off sending me information. When that happens, they simply fall off the radar of things I write about.
So, once again, if you know of a rescue or volunteer with one who would like to have their animals or events featured on the blog, please send them my contact information and I will get it out. I cannot do it all by myself.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

What attracts people to blogs?

As I was sitting here cruising the internet for interesting stories, I began thinking about the people who read my blog. I have this cool little tool which shows me the stats on my blog. It shows me locations, time of day, blog item read, how many pages, etc. I can track if you live in Orlando or Bismark, North Dakota and yes, I do have readers in North Dakota. The stats are compiled for me on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. I even get a lot of readers from Europe and Asia. Of course, my friend Michal, is in New Zealand so I know she will show up once a week or so.
Why do people read blogs? If you read my blog are you also interested in other animal blogs or do you diversify and read political blogs? Maybe real estate blogs are your choice or how about business blogs?
I have said before and will again, blogs are a great way to communicate with others who are interested in the same things you are. Some of my blogs become very personal and because the blog belongs to me, that is okay. Sometimes I just like to write off the wall things and sometimes I get comments on things I have written which I thought were so generic no one would notice. Then when I have written something which I thought was a no-brainer as far as getting people motivated, I hear nothing about the topic.
Just for your information, I try to keep any errors to a minimum in spelling and grammer, but things do slip through. If they are caught by someone close to me, I get them corrected ASAP. (thanks Joyci, my personal cat expert) If not, they get printed and whoever reads them can discuss how illiterate I am.
I have had people who try and pick a fight through the blog with other people or organizations. I have no idea why they do this. I have had people write to me in a language I have never seen. I have had people question me about topics which are not animal related.
I will state again for the record, I will not accept or post any negative comments towards me personally or any other animal welfare person or organization. I will not discuss my private life or that of my family and friends. I will continue to try and bring you the latest news I can find, the most needy of the adoptable animals and the odd little bits and pieces I find in my travels.
If you don't like what I have written, drop me a note personally. My email address is at the top of the blog. I don't take phone calls on my home phone unless I recognize who you are and only a few select people, my boyfriend, my son, my mother and my job have my cell phone. I also will not accept calls on that unless I recognize you.
So please continue to keep reading. Contact me by email if you would like to have an animal posted or have an event planned for the area or would like to discuss one of my topics in depth. I enjoy hearing from you.

The explosion of cats and kittens

Every year it is the same. We keep hoping things will improve and perhaps they are and we have just not been made aware. I am speaking of kitten season. In Florida we have three because of our weather patterns.
In Mississippi they are now offering all cats and kittens free for adopting. They have more than double the number of animals their shelter was built for. I am sure it is the same in our area. What that means is the euthanasia rates will go up in the area because more cats and kittens will have no room at the inn.
It seems pretty sad to me we continue to allow all these companion animals to die when a simple solution is to spay and neuter your pets.

Heartworm "season"

I have written on this subject before and because it is the beginning of our summer season and the mosquitoes seem to be flourishing around my house in record numbers, I thought a gentle reminder is in order.
Please, please, please use heartworm preventative on your pet. We live in Florida, where the weather does not get cold enough most years to destroy mosquitos, like a cold weather state where it does.
I found it interesting there was this article in the San Francisco paper when even the headline stated "Pets in the southeast are most at risk for heartworm." San Francisco does not qualify as being located in the southeast but Florida does.
If you have ever seen a pet have to go through the heartworm treatment or even lost a pet from the heartworm treatment, (I have experienced both), please treat your pets. I cannot stress this enough.