tagged w/ animal abandonment
Posted: February 4, 2011 03:30 PM
U.S. Citizens Forced to Abandon Their Dogs in Egypt
Amid the political riots in Egypt, the U.S. State Department is evacuating U.S. nationals. But evacuees are being told that they are not allowed to take their animal companions on the plane. This leaves the terrified evacuees with an impossible choice: leave their beloved companions behind to face certain death, or risk their own lives by remaining in Egypt in order to stay with their animals.
Have we learned nothing from Hurricane Katrina? For Americans and compassionate people around the world, dogs and cats are members of the family. Animals aren't any better equipped to survive a disaster than humans are. Dogs and cats who are left behind in emergencies may be stranded in dangerous conditions for days or weeks without food or water -- or worse.
Many brave people chose to stay behind after Katrina rather than evacuate without their beloved animal family members, and many of these people perished as a result. The animals whose guardians left without them, however, were shot or suffered slow, lonely, and painful deaths from dehydration, starvation, injuries, or drowning. A few lucky animals were later rescued, but for many, help came too late. At one home, PETA's team of trained animal-emergency staffers found the rotting remains of a pit bull who had been left locked inside a cage on a kitchen table without any food or water.
Dogs and cats who are left behind by people fleeing Egypt face similar -- if not worse -- peril, and chances that they will ever be reunited with their guardians are slim to none. The people fleeing Egypt have already had their lives turned upside down. It's a low blow for their own country to put them through the heartache and stress of leaving their animal family members behind and wondering what will happen to them.
A State Department contact has confirmed to PETA that decisionmakers are discussing ways to create more animal-friendly standard operating procedures for future evacuations, but the people and animals who are caught in the turmoil in Egypt need help right now. With the stroke of a pen, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton could put an end to the heartbreaking destruction of families today. Please urge the Department of State's Egyptian Task Force to allow evacuees from Egypt to take their animal companions with them.
Dogs and cats have no political affiliation, and they don't start riots. They don't deserve to be left behind to die in a crisis created by humans.Bruce Friedrich
Posted: February 4, 2011 03:30 PM
U.S. Citizens Forced to Abandon... more
By Leslie Askew, CNN
July 16, 2010 7:37 a.m. EDT
CNN Hero: Deborah Hoffman
Houston, Texas (CNN) -- In the scorching summer heat, Deborah Hoffman can be found patrolling a section of Houston, Texas, that she's dubbed "The Corridor of Cruelty."
"It's basically a dumping ground for live and dead animals," said Hoffman.
The corridor -- an area more than a mile wide where abused dogs are abandoned -- is located in northeast Houston near the Little York exit off U.S. 59 (Eastex Freeway).
"One of the saddest cases is when I come across one in a large green Hefty [trash] bag," said Hoffman. "Some of the dogs that we find in the bags ... [have] some serious wounds ... most likely from dog fighting."
Hoffman, 52, started the nonprofit Corridor Rescue, and for nearly two years, she and her team of volunteers have been rescuing dogs from this area and shedding light on the neglect of these animals.
In Texas, it is a criminal offense to abandon dogs, according to Assistant District Attorney Belinda Smith. As a result of Hoffman's efforts, Smith says her office has filed criminal cases against people who have dumped their dogs.
"Deborah not only brought the problem to our attention, but she takes it a step further -- she tries to find homes for animals that have been dumped," said Smith.
Separately, in November 2008, Houston executed the largest dog fighting sting in the country to date, said Smith. As a result, 60 people were convicted and 168 dogs were seized.
Hoffman has been involved in animal welfare for years and first came in contact with the corridor as a volunteer for a rescue group in 2006. Within a couple of months she rescued six dogs from the area. A return visit in August 2008 moved her to rally her community for help.
On a tip from a friend, she went back to the area to search for a pregnant dog in need of rescue. She saw the place still teeming with emaciated and scared dogs fighting for food, shelter and their lives.
"I took my 12-year-old daughter with me, and we spent the afternoon driving this neighborhood," said Hoffman. "[We] both literally were in tears by the end of our journey."
Soon after, those tears turned to action. Hoffman sent out a mass e-mail to fellow animal lovers begging for help.
"[I] said ... 'We have an absolute atrocity going on day-in and day-out. And I'm calling this place The Corridor of Cruelty. There [are] animals scrounging around for food constantly. They're running in ditches with broken legs, broken bodies, pregnant. People, come out and help.' "
Many heeded the call, and Hoffman and her "active army," as she calls it, started waging war on the corridor.
In addition to the district attorney's office, Hoffman's efforts have gotten the ear of city council members, mayoral candidates and the police department, which set up cameras in the corridor to try to capture people dumping animals. The group also educates community members about anti-cruelty laws and spaying and neutering their pets.
"We literally are in a crisis here in Houston," said Hoffman. "Enough is enough in the corridor. Things have got to change."
Hoffman and her group have set up 18 feeding stations throughout the area. Volunteers fill the bowls of food and water at each station six days a week, laying out a total of 600 pounds of food a week.
"We are keeping animals alive until we can get to some of them and bring them to safety," said Hoffman.
Hoffman coordinates all of the rescues. Some dogs come up to the volunteers and want to jump in their vehicles; others are afraid, so Hoffman and two other designated volunteers trap them using snares and slip leads, among other means.
While the corridor is safe for volunteers during the day, said Hoffman, the group's protocol is to never be out there after dark, even though no one has ever been bitten or attacked by a dog, she said.
Once rescued, the dogs are taken to a vet to be treated before they are placed with a foster family or other rescue group.
Hoffman often tries to place dogs before they are rescued. While in the field, volunteers photograph the dogs, and Hoffman e-mails the images to her group's vast network, which includes rescue groups for specific types of dogs.
There [are] animals scrounging around for food ... running in ditches with broken legs, broken bodies.
--Deborah Hoffman, founder of Corridor Rescue
"Hopefully we'll get someone to say, 'OK, I'll take that golden retriever,' " she said. "So we're really working together as a community."
Corridor Rescue covers the cost of food, a crate and vet bills for dogs that are fostered through them. Dogs that aren't immediately placed with a family or other rescue group go into boarding facilities until Corridor Rescue can find them a home.
"Volunteers and myself go visit these dogs on a weekly basis, so it gives them more social interaction," said Hoffman. "We bring treats, blankets, take them outside on walks and hug them a lot."
Hoffman relies heavily on private donations to keep the operation going. So far, the group has relocated more than 180 strays from the corridor.
"The most proud moments are when we take a dog that is in horrible condition and we bring it back to life," said Hoffman.
Corridor Rescue not only saves lives but helps build families as well, like Joan McKinney and her adoptive dog, Lotto. Hoffman and her group rescued Lotto from the corridor in 2009.
"It's truly a miracle, taking a dog like Lotto, in that bad a condition off the streets, and then putting him in a loving home with someone like Joan," said Hoffman.
"Lotto brings a lot of joy in my life. He's the sweetest dog," said McKinney.
For Hoffman, the war will never be won until animal abandonment is extinct.
"Animal rescue is what I will do for the rest of my life," she said. "I'll be ... trying to save an animal from my rocking chair."
Want to get involved? Check out the Corridor Rescue website at www.corridorrescue.org and see how to help. You can nominate a 2010 CNN Hero at cnnheroes.com.
CNN's Erika Clarke contributed to this report.By Leslie Askew, CNN
July 16, 2010 7:37 a.m. EDT
CNN Hero: Deborah Hoffman... more
Added On June 24, 2010
A Miami dog owner says animal control knew her dog was locked in a foreclosed house but did nothing about it.
WSVN reports.Added On June 24, 2010
A Miami dog owner says animal control knew her dog was... more
There's no simple carrot-and-stick solution, but a caring home would be nice
By JONATHAN LLOYD
Updated 2:01 PM PDT, Fri, Mar 26, 2010
The bunny boom at Long Beach City College has come to this.
Furry-ous campus officials posted signs that make it clear: "RABBIT DROP-OFFS ARE PROHIBITED ANYWHERE ON CAMPUS... PLEASE DO NOT LEAVE RABBITS AT LBCC."
The smaller print: "Long Beach City college is NOT a sanctuary for rabbits or any other domestic animal. Anyone who abandons an animal is subject to a $500 fine and/or up to six months in jail."
It goes on the mention California Penal Code Sec. 597S, to be known from now on as Thumper's Law.
School officials said there were at least 300 rabbits -- at last count -- hopping around the campus' grassy areas. Knowing rabbits, that number has increased. That's a lot of digging and chewing, most of it resulting in damage to the campus' landscaping.
But the real threat is to the bunnies -- these rabbits were pets who became used to the domestic lifestyle. Things can get wild on a college campus.
"People are under the false impression that LBCC is a safe haven for rabbits so they tend to drop them off when they are no longer wanted as family pets," said Jacque Olson, a LBCC employee who has provided care for the rabbits. "Unfortunately, the rabbits live in unsafe conditions and are injured and preyed upon by predators because they were bred to be pets."
Veterinarians are attempting to spay-neuter the animals. Volunteers collect the rabbits, take then to the vet and become bunny foster parents after surgery.
"These bunnies are so happy and relaxed to be in a sheltered environment," Diane McClure, a professor of veterinary medicine at Western University, told the LA Times. "They deserve to have a forever home."
To adopt a bunny, first consider the consequences of adopting a bunny. If you're ok with that, contact Jacque Olson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 562-938-4370, or Donna Prindle at email@example.com or 562-938-4356.
First Published: Mar 26, 2010 8:03 AM PDTThere's no simple carrot-and-stick solution, but a caring home would be nice
Jackson, Miss. – In Defense of Animals’ (IDA) Project Hope sanctuary near Grenada, Mississippi, and Mississippi Spay & Neuter (MS SPAN) are teaming up to spay and neuter scores of dogs released to IDA by a Holmes County woman. Once a breeder, she’d fallen on hard times and couldn’t feed or properly care for the dogs.
On Friday, February 5, 20 of the dogs will be spayed by MS SPAN at their “Big Fix” rig at 2104 Old Brandon Road, Pearl, Mississippi. IDA and MS SPAN hope this event will bring attention to the plight of homeless and abused companion animals across Mississippi through the promotion of affordable low cost, high volume spay/neuter of animals.
read more at link
http://www.idanews.org/ida-breaking-news/in-defense-of-animals-and-ms-span-aid-rescued-dogs-and-their-guardian/Jackson, Miss. – In Defense of Animals’ (IDA) Project Hope sanctuary near... more
The big-eyed puppies and purring kittens that looked so cuddly under the Christmas tree in December are beginning to look a lot less cute to some of those new pet owners this month.
Phones are ringing at animal shelters and pet rescue centers as new pet owners try to figure out how to gracefully give away the gift that has stopped giving and instead become an unmanageable drain on time and finances.
"It’s a common problem after the holidays," says Sandra DeFeo, co-executive director of the Humane Society of New York.
"Lots of people come to us before Christmas and say they want to get an animal as a gift for their fiancée, or their mother, or their brother. Then after Christmas, it hits home with the recipient, who didn’t realize how much time a pet would take. People admit they are not prepared and they want us to take care of the animal."
DeFeo says larger breeds are returned more often, and that they’ll probably get even more dogs in February and March.
"That’s because even though a dog can be little and sleepy as a puppy, as they grow they get more energetic and need more training," she explains.
Labs and "any type of hound mix," such as beagle or bassett hound, are brought in very often she says.
So are breeds that require more medical attention, such as allergy-prone bulldogs, DeFeo says.
Pet drop offs have already begun at Animal Haven, an adoption center in downtown Manhattan, says Jennifer Bristol, director of operations. One couple brought in a puppy that a family friend had given to their 4-year-old for Christmas, she said.
It was a mixed-breed shepherd and collie mix. "I felt so bad for this guy," Bristol recalls. "He didn’t want to give up the puppy but was not prepared and couldn’t handle the puppy."
An older woman brought in a dog that her family had gotten her for Christmas - a small mixed breed terrier, Bristol recalls. "I am assuming that in the coming weeks we will see many more dogs brought in," she says.
"People feel sad, but they realize they’re making the right decision to not keep the puppy if they can’t handle it."
Patrick Kwan, New York State director of field Services at The Humane Society of the United States, says his office gets calls from new pet owners who want to work with a shelter or rescue group that does not euthanize the dogs.
"Many of these organizations are overwhelmed by people trying to return an animal," Kwan says.
He notes that the number of animals coming into Animal Care and Control of New York City is on the increase, after decreasing for the last six years.
Joanne Yohannan, senior vice president of operations at The North Shore Animal League America in Port Washington, L.I., which does nearly 20,000 adoptions annually, has not seen an increase in pet returns this month.
"Some of the best commitments can be made if the proper thought is put into it," she says.
"There are a lot of successful adoptions at the holidays. But you have to think about the commitment that goes along with adopting a dog or a cat. Unexpected gift adoptions are not a good idea."
At Animal Care and Control of New York City, which rescues 120 animals a day, spokesperson Richard Gentles says there has been an increase in interest in the "Pets for Life" Program.
"If pet owners have financial hardship or high vet bills, the program gives them alternatives," he explains. "If a family can’t afford an operation, for instance, the program could give a list of vets who might do the operation for free."
Kwan says the best way to avoid the sad scenario of having to give up a puppy is to give a gift certificate for a pet instead of the actual pet.
"This way, after the holidays someone can go in and use the certificate toward an adoption," he says. "Or the person might decide that this is just not the right time to get an animal."
Read more: http://wwwThe big-eyed puppies and purring kittens that looked so cuddly under the Christmas... more
Pet Overpopulation and its many tentacles reaches into our homes, neighborhoods, shelters, rescues, local and national governments. And until it touches our collective heart and consciousness, it will continue spreading its insidious disease: Euthanasia.
We respond to this disease with denial, much like any other terminal illness. To protest its existence doesn't dissolve it. To look the other way doesn't halt its progression. Our only hope is to become aware of its dangers, yield to knowledge that will slow its advance, and actively fight it as we would any pestilence.
Having our pets altered is a solid, effective defense against overpopulation in that it places fewer and fewer offspring in kill-shelters. Spayed, Neutered, Altered, Sterilized, Castrated, Fixed, all refer to surgical intervention (female ovariohysterectomy; male orchiectomy) that prevents animals from reproducing.
Another contributing factor to pet overpopulation is that guardians are surrendering their pets to shelters for a variety of reasons. The "We'll try it and if it doesn't work out ... " mentality when bringing a pet into a home is placing that animal at risk. Much more commitment is required, and it BEGINS with considering the appropriate pet for the family.
The 'throw-away' society we've become seems at odds with giving much-needed thought to buying the right breed or selecting the right shelter pet. Due consideration must be given to the pet's size, breed temperament, grooming, obedience classes, vet visits and expenses. Not preparing for these can result in dysfunctional pet guardianship patterns that ultimately lead to surrendering pets to shelters or outright abandonment.
To the desired end that Pet Overpopulation and Euthanasia will soon be past issues, the following information is of interest:
1. Over $2 billion is spent annually by local governments to shelter and ultimately destroy 8-10 million adoptable dogs and cats due of shortage of homes. Source: Business Wire Features
2. Less than 3% of dog guardians are responsible for surplus births. Source: Save Our Strays
3. The main reason for cat overpopulation is feral, free-roaming, unowned cats. Source: Save Our Strays
4. An estimated 6 to 8 million dogs and cats are euthanized in shelters each year. Millions more are abandoned, only to suffer from illness or injury before dying. Source: Doris Day Animal League
5. The perceived high cost of altering is not the problem, but the lack of education, i.e., its benefits.
6. While prices vary considerably, many humane societies and municipal animal control departments offer low-cost spay/neuter services. And while the cost of surgery may seem high initially, it's a real bargain when compared with the cost of raising a litter of puppies or kittens. Spaying and neutering also saves taxpayer dollars. On average, it costs approximately $100 to capture, house, feed and eventually kill a homeless animal - a cost that ultimately comes out of all our pockets. Source: Doris Day Animal League
7. The cost of having a pregnant female can be much higher than cost of spaying.
8. Seven dogs and cats are born every day for each person born in the US. Of those, only 1 in 5 puppies and kittens stay in their original home for his/her natural lifetime. The remaining 4 are abandoned to the streets or end up at a shelter. Source: The Humane Society of the United States
9. Each day 10,000 humans are born in the U.S. - and each day 70,000 puppies and kittens are born. As long as these birth rates exist, there will never be enough homes for all the animals. Source: Spay USA
10. Early age altering of pets (6-14 weeks) has been practiced for over 25 years in North America.
11. Neutering the male before he is sexually mature will inhibit such 'territorial' linked behaviors like urine-mhttp://www.news-record.com/content/2009/02/07/article/euthanasia_rates_rise_as_animal_s... more
Animal Cruelty Abounds in Some States
The Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) has just releasef a new report that looks at the best and worst U.S. states when it comes to the legal protection of animals against abuse and cruelty. The comparative analysis tells us what are the best states, but also, what are the "best states to be an animal abuser" (their words). What are those 5 states?
...and the Losers Are...
The ALDF points an accusing finger at: Hawaii, Idaho, Kentucky, Mississippi, and North Dakota. At the very bottom of the list is Kentucky, a state where animal abusers get off easy and animal protection law doesn't really have any teeth.
Here's a list of reasons from why Kentucky is so bad when it comes to protecting animals:
* Felony provision available only for cruelty against select animals
* No felony provisions for extreme neglect or abandonment
* Inadequate definitions/standards of basic care
* Principal protections apply only to select types of animals
* No mental health evaluations or counselling for offenders
* No cost mitigation & recovery provisions for impounded animals (e.g. cost‐of‐care bonds, other reimbursement of costs, liens, restitution provisions)
* No forfeiture of abused animals
* No restrictions on future ownership or possession of animals following a conviction
* Veterinarians are prohibited from reporting suspected cruelty or fighting
* No provisions for select non‐animal‐related agencies/professionals to report suspected animal abuse
* Inadequate humane agent provisions and no duty on peace officers to enforce animal protection laws
* No separate crime for the sexual assault of an animal
* No statutory authority to allow protective orders to include animals
* Inadequate animal fighting provisions
Top 5 Best States for Legislative Animal Protection...
At the top of the list are: Illinois, Maine, Michigan, Oregon, California. Number 1 is Illinois. Compare the list below with Kentucky's list:
* Felony penalties for cruelty, neglect, abandonment and sexual assault
* Adequate definitions/standards of basic care
* Principal protections apply to most animals
* Full range of statutory protections
* Increased penalties for repeat animal abusers and animal hoarders
* Mental health evaluations prior to sentencing
* Counseling/anger management for certain offenders
* Some mandatory cost recovery measures for impounded animals
* Pre‐conviction forfeiture allowed
* Mandatory forfeiture of select animals on conviction
* Court may order restrictions on future ownership or possession of animals upon conviction
* Mandatory reporting of suspected animal cruelty by select non‐animal‐related agencies
* Mandatory reporting of animal cruelty by veterinarians
* Humane agents have some law enforcement authority
* Protective orders may include animals
.Animal Cruelty Abounds in Some States
The Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) has just... more
As the recession forces more and more Americans to downsize, leaving their homes and struggling to pay their bills, animal welfare groups report a dramatic rise in pets given up for adoption or abandoned on the street.
"We got a call from a young couple last Sunday," said Bill Smith, founder of Main Line Rescue. "They were on a payphone in a parking lot at a Burger King in West Chester (Pa.) They said they were on their way to a (homeless) shelter themselves and needed us to take their dog and cat."
A passing social worker saw the couple and, realizing they were in trouble, stopped to ask if she could help, Smith said. "She drove them here." The dog, 10-year-old Chance, is a cross between a cocker and a springer spaniel. The cat, Charlie Brown, is 6 and has a deformed leg.
Two regional shelters recently received dogs after neighbors reported that the animals were kept in cars all day. In both cases, the owners were homeless and living in the cars with their pets.
When people come to a shelter to give up an animal, they are not required to explain their financial circumstances. So there is no firm data on how many animals have been left because of the recession, according to the Humane Society of the United States. Anecdotally, however, shelters across the country are reporting an increase not only in the numbers of pets coming in, but also in the emotional straits of their owners.
"It's a different kind of surrender," says Smith. "Usually, when people drop off animals, they're just not willing to take care of them anymore. But more and more, they would like nothing more than to keep them."
Some pet owners who are managing to stay in their homes give up their animals because they can't afford to feed them or treat their illnesses.
United Animal Nations, one of several groups that provide emergency funding for veterinary care, reports a 52% increase in applications this year.
Pet owners are under economic pressure, which increases demand at shelters, which are running out of room and money. Meanwhile, local governments are cutting back support for the shelters they run. And finally, private donations are dwindling.
"The last number I heard was that 6 million Americans are potentially looking at foreclosure. We expect 60% of these homeowners have a pet. That means 3 (million) to 4 million pets are at risk."
At the shelter on Hunting Park Avenue, staff members regularly go home in tears, says John Pastor, shelter manager. "This place has plenty of 'Oh my God's,' " he says, passing a cage with a mother cat and her 2-week-old kittens.
Animal shelters are busting at the seams nationwide. Most people know what happens to pets that don't find homes. In recent years, the number of adoptable animals being euthanized at shelters in the US already reached millions/per year, it is devastating to imagine what the 'numbers' in the near future will be...As the recession forces more and more Americans to downsize, leaving their homes and... more