A dog left tied to train tracks in California last month has found a new home.
Unlike that day last month, when he was secured to the tracks in the path of an oncoming train, he had many options to choose from.
Officials at Riverside County’s Department of Animal Services said they received more than 1,300 emails from people interested in adopting the rescued dog they dubbed Banjo. He was found by a Union Pacific crew in Mecca, where he’d been tied to the rails by a man who told authorities the dog was no longer wanted.
The 11-month-old poodle-terrier mix went home Friday with Jeff and Louisa Moore of Huntington Beach.
“He’s so beautiful isn’t he?” Louisa (above) said to her husband, holding Banjo in her arms for the first time.
Letters of interest came in from as far away as England and Puerto Rico, but animal services officials said the Moores were chosen because they constantly checked in on Banjo via e-mail and live close to the beach and a dog park.
Jeff Moore said he and his wife applied to adopt Banjo after seeing his story on the news and Facebook.
“Tonight we’re just going to go home and hang out,” Jeff told the Desert Sun in Palm Beach. “We have a big field that’s right next to our place that about a dozen of us all go out with our dogs, and they all get along really well, so it’ll be fun introducing him to all the dogs. I’m sure they’ll love him.”
Before the couple left, Jo Marie Upegui, a veterinarian technician at Coachella Valley Animal Campus, explained to them that Banjo liked tortillas and snuggling on the couch and that he feared brooms and men in uniform.
The Moores, who also have a Tibetan terrier named Lali, said they planed to create a Facebook page to keep those interested up to date on Banjo’s new life.
Banjo’s name refers to old traffic signals on rail lines. He was discovered when a westbound train crew noticed a hunched-over man walking away from the tracks, leaving the dog behind. The crew alerted dispatchers, who stopped the eastbound train coming down the tracks to which Banjo was tied.
A 78-year-old man was questioned, but not charged. He appeared confused and possibly suffering from dementia. He told investigators his family no longer wanted the dog and didn’t know what to do with him.
(Photo: Riverside County Department of Animal Services)
Posted by jwoestendiek May 20th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abandoned, adopt, adopted, adoption, animal services, animals, applicants, banjo, Coachella Valley Animal Campus, dog, dogs, emails, home, huntington beach, interest, mecca, mix, pets, poodle, rescue, riverside county, shelters, tied, tracks, train, union pacific, unwanted, wanted
These days, it seems to be an idea that rarely fails: Take something that proves popular with humans — be it memory foam bedding, anti-depressants, designer clothing, or day care — and market it to the dog world.
Food trucks for dogs? It was just a matter of time.
The big dog food and treat companies have had them for years — multi-wheeled behemoths, slathered in their own advertising, that pull up at doggie events and sell or offer free samples of their products.
Now, though, you can find doggie food trucks at strictly human events — like the increasingly popular food truck “rodeos” that allow folks to wait in long lines to sample multiple cuisines, then hope their stomachs don’t start bucking like a bronco.
Go to one in North Carolina and you might find — in addition to those trucks dispensing fish tacos, monster burritos or Korean barbecue – there’s one catering to your dog.
“… When you attend the nearest food truck rodeo with your pet, you don’t have to feel bad about not giving Fido a bite of your duck fat-fried tater tots or gourmet grilled cheese,” WUNC reports. “Fido now has her own food truck.”
The Waggin’ Wagon serves up treats not just to good dogs, but for a good cause as well.
It hit the road last summer, operated by the animal rescue group Paws4Ever and established with some pro-bono help from the Durham-based advertising firm McKinney.
All proceeds help Paws4ever’s homeless animals find forever homes.
Waggin’ Wagon’s doggie menu includes bacon fire hydrants, peanut butter bones, chicken parmesan teddy bears, pizza bones and doggie ice cream. The volunteer-run wagon serves goodies from Gourmutt’s Bakery, a Raleigh-based dog treat bakery that opened in 2004.
The Waggin’ Wagon isn’t limiting itself to dog events. It will, for instance, be among the human food trucks gathering for a food truck rodeo June 16 in Durham Central Park, according to its website.
Paws4ever began advocating for animal welfare in 1962, when it was known as the Animal Protection Society of Chapel Hill and, later, the Animal Protection Society of Orange County. The nonprofit organization also administered the county government contract to operate county animal control services and its shelter.
In 2004, the county government ended its contract with the APS of Orange County and the society opened an adoption center of its own, also developing the Felicite Latane Animal Sanctuary on 50 acres near Mebane. In 2008, it changed its name to Paws4ever. In addition to its shelters, the organization also runs a learning center for dog training and a 3-acre dog park.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 30th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adoption, animal protection society, animals, chapel hill, cuisine, dog, dogs, durham, food truck rodeos, food trucks, gormutts bakery, humans, Mckinney, mebane, north carolina, orange county, paws4ever, pets, rescue, rodeo, shelter, waggin wagon
The dog’s owner, a 78-year-old man who was arrested at the scene, told authorities his family didn’t want the dog and he didn’t know what to do with him.
Union Pacific Railroad officials say the incident took place April 2.
The train’s engineer witnessed someone placing something on the tracks and, once he saw it was a dog, stopped the train in Mecca.
A Union Pacific special agent arrived, untied the 10-month-old poodle-terrier mix and detained the man, CBS in Los Angeles reported.
Charges weren’t pursued because ”the man appeared to be confused, or senile and didn’t fully understand what he had done,” John Welsh of the Riverside County Department of Animal Services said in a statement.
The man was released to family members.
The dog, who was nicknamed Banjo, was taken to the Coachella Valley Animal Campus in Thousand Palms where he was examined, treated and bathed.
Anyone interested in adopting Banjo, can email: email@example.com.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 10th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abandoned, adopt, adoptable, adoption, animal control, animals, banjo, california, confused, dog, dogs, elderly, emergency brakes, indio, mecca, mix, pets, poodle, rescued, riverside county, saved, terrier, tied, ties, tracks, train, union pacific, unwanted
We’re all getting a little tired of the “win-win.” For one thing, it’s a cliche. For another, with so many “win-wins” being pointed out these days, two wins just no longer seem enough.
So how about a win-win-win-win?
Last Friday, the PreVet Association at Illinois State University brought a dozen dogs to campus, accomplishing, by my count, four wins:
First, students, stressed out by exams, had an additional – and far healthier than some other alternatives – way to unwind.
Second — with students paying $1 to walk, pet and play with rescue dogs — the event raised a little money for Wish Bone Canine Rescue, which brought the dogs to school.
Third, dogs in need of homes got a chance to show off, increasing the chances of getting adopted or fostered.
And fourth, the dogs got gobs of attention and a chance to socialize during what organizers call “Dog Days on the Quad.”
“This is a good chance for stress relief,” said Erin Mortimer, ISU Student PreVet Association vice president. “A lot of students miss their dogs from home and enjoy taking these dogs for a walk.”
The dogs benefit at least as much as the young humans do. On top of getting some attention and learning socialization skills, it’s an opportunity for them to find a future forever home, or a temporary foster one.
“We try to let students know that they are also able to foster for Wish Bone,” said Kim Bill, volunteer coordinator for Wish Bone. “It is a great way for them to have a dog on their own schedule. On top of that, everything is provided by Wish Bone — food, toys, medical care, and support.”
You can see a slideshow of it all at Stateside, the school’s alumni magazine.
Half the proceeds from the event went to Wish Bone for food, shelter, and medical treatment. The other half went to the ISU Student PreVet Association to allow students to participate in symposiums and special lectures.
Adding up, actually, to five wins.
(Photo: Stateside magazine, Illinois State University)
Posted by jwoestendiek March 25th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopt, adoption, animals, attention, campus, college, dogs, exams, foster, fundraiser, fundraising, illinois state university, mental health, pets, play, pre vet, pre vet association, rescue, shelter, socialization, stress, unwind, veterinary, walk, wish bone canine rescue
But not until after traveling a pretty bumpy road.
In December, the beagle-German shepherd landed in the Nash County Animal Shelter in North Carolina, where, after going unadopted, the day was nearing when he’d be euthanized.
His cause was taken up by a local animal rescue group, Promoting Animal Welfare in N.C., which persuaded a rescue group in Vermont to take him in.
Arrangements were made to ship him north, where he was deemed more likely to get adopted.
As the Rocky Mount Telegram tells it, Felix and another dog were headed up Interstate 95 in January when the van they were in crashed in Emporia, Virginia. Both dogs were ejected from their crates and the vehicle. The other dog was hit by a car and killed. Felix disappeared.
Felix spent the next three weeks wandering as dog lovers in North Carolina and Virginia joined forces to try and find him. They created “Operation Finding Felix” — a Facebook page that quickly drew more than 1,000 followers.
Frequently, sightings of him were reported, by residents and truckers who also were keeping an eye out for him. But none panned out. Promoting Animal Welfare offered a $600 reward for his return, and a search dog was hired to help track him down, but neither led to immediate results.
Each weekend, volunteers searched for the dog around Emporia, posting fliers, hiking through the woods, and enlisting the help of others, like the manager of a local Burger King who allowed volunteers to post fliers about Felix inside the restaurant.
On Feb. 24, one of the restaurant’s customers, Pat Holland, saw the dog’s picture and realized she had seen him by her apartment earlier that day.
She rushed home and found the dog on a neighbor’s front steps.
“He looked like he was hungry, so I put some food out there for him to eat and put some water out there,” the neighbor, Marty Newkirk said. “The next thing I know he was laying down at my door.”
Newkirk had let the dog inside. He was planning on letting him stay the night, and even thinking about contacting apartment management about the possibility of keeping him.
Newkirk and Holland called police, who had also been cooperating in the search for Felix.
“They were looking for the dog also,” Newkirk said. “Everybody in Virginia was looking for the dog.”
Volunteers from the North Carolina rescue group came and picked Felix up, Newkirk said. “They started crying because they were happy to see the dog, I started crying because they were taking him.”
Back in North Carolina, back where he started, Felix finally found a home.
Before his ill-fated trip north — while Felix was getting neutered, and vaccinated, and treated for heartworm — he was being fostered by a young woman. She’d tried to persuade her boyfriend and his family to adopt Felix. Already having a dog, they declined.
When Felix got back to town, after all he’d been through, they changed their minds.
(Photo: Rocky Mount Telegram)
Posted by jwoestendiek March 5th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: 95, accident, adoption, animal shelter, animals, burger king, crash, death row, dog, dogs, euthanasia, facebook, felix, interstate, lost, missing, nash county, north carolina, operation finding felix, pets, promoting animal welfare, rescue group, rescued, rocky mount, transport
Animal advocates in Maryland will probably recognize a familiar face or two in this public service announcement, scheduled to premier this week at Maryland Humane Lobby Day.
The PSA will officially premier on Thursday, Feb. 21st, during the Maryland Humane Lobby Day event at the Maryland Statehouse and Legislative Buildings in Annapolis.
The event will include awards, briefings, and an opportunity for people who care about animals to meet directly with their elected officials.
Thirty-four states have established funding mechanisms to support spay/neuter programs, leading to significant reductions in their euthanasia rates. New Jersey witnessed a 61 percent decrease and New Hampshire saw a 75 percent decrease after implementing state programs. In New Hampshire, statistics showed for every dollar invested, $3.15 was saved in reduced costs for shelter care and euthanasia.
The Save Maryland Pets Spay Awareness PSA, directed and produced by Dani Englander, features some of Maryland’s most dedicated animal advocates, workers, officers, and friends.
Appearances are made by Del. Barbara Frush, sponsor of the Maryland spay/neuter legislation, and Sen. John Astle and Del. Ron George, co-sponsors of the bills.
Among the other animal lovers and advocates who appear are Carolyn Kilborn, Tami Santelli, Matt Wieters, Valerie Leonard, Michelle Kownacki, Caroline Griffin, and Wendy Cozzone. The video was filmed in Annapolis and Baltimore.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 18th, 2013 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: adoption, advocates, animals, annapolis, baltimore, bill, costs, dogs, funding, homeless, humane lobby day, legislation, lives, maryland, maryland votes for animals, neuter, pets, program, proposal, psa, public service announcement, save, save maryland pets, saving, spay, spay-neuter
A poodle-shih tzu mix whose face, from some angles, bears a striking resemblance to that of a human, is gaining fame far beyond Mishawaka, Indiana.
Tonik, 2 years old, is one of over 100 dogs waiting to be adopted at the Homeward Bound Shelter in Mishawaka. Rescued from a kill shelter, he has been there since 2011.
But since posting a photo of Tonik — taken by Renny Mills, who photographs adoptable animals for the shelter’s website — the shelter says inquiries about the dog have been pouring in.
You can see him and the shelters other animals at the Homeward Bound’s website.
(Photo: Renny Mills)
Posted by jwoestendiek February 8th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopt, adoption, animals, dog, dogs, face, homeward bound, human, human face, indiana, mishawaka, mix, pets, photo, photogaphy, poodle, rescued, shelter, shih-tzu, tonik
Susan Lee, of Wake Forest, independently rescued animals for 35 years, according to WRAL in Raleigh.
Lee, 55, had undergone radiation twice – each time coming back to the home where she grew up to care for her animals, hundreds of which she took in over the years. She learned in December that the cancer had spread to her brain.
In an interview with WRAL News last week, Lee said she wanted to make sure her “fur kids” were well cared for if something happened to her. She’d set up a website before her death in hopes of finding homes for the animals still in her care.
In the interview, she said she would stay home and look out for her pets as long as possible, even though she was growing weaker.
“I love this place. My mom has been blessed, I’ve been blessed to live here,” she said as a dog walked over to lick her face — one of the eight dogs and six cats she was still trying to find homes for last week.
Lee said her cancer strengthened her faith, made her grateful for each day and strengthened her bond with her animals, which included special-needs horses.
“I hope there will never be a day that I’m alive that I don’t have an animal with me,” she said.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 6th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopt, adoption, animals, cancer, cats, death, dogs, fur kids, homes, horses, north carolina, pets, rescue, rescuer, susan lee, wake forest, website
Did you hear the one about the gay bulldog?
Of course you did.
The story that quickly rose to the top of the dog news charts yesterday all stemmed from a Facebook post by a Tennessee woman who regularly visits her local animal shelter and posts photos of animals who might be euthanized if they’re not adopted.
This week, she met Elton, a bulldog — actually a bulldog mix — at the shelter in Madison County, and was told that his owner had surrendered him because he had seen Elton hump another dog and thought he was gay.
She took a photo of Elton and put it on Facebook, along with Elton’s not exactly confirmed but fairly sensational story:
“… His owner says he’s gay! He hunched another male dog so his owner threw him away bc he refuses to have a “gay” dog! Even if that weren’t the most assinine thing I’ve ever heard, its still discrimination! Don’t let this gorgeous dog die bc his owner is ignorant of normal dog behavior! He’s in kennel 10L and he WILL be put down tomorrow bc there is no room at the inn!”
The post was picked up by the website Gawker, and went viral from there, with news articles appearing in everything from the Daily Beast to the Daily Mail. It also led to a barrage of phone calls to the shelter, mostly from people who wanted to adopt Elton — one of whom did Thursday.
“Stop calling the Madison County animal shelter — the gay bulldog was adopted hours ago,” the Nashville Tennessean reported yesterday.
The Facebook poster is a mother of four who calls herself “Jackson Madison Rabies Control Stalker” (rabies control being what the animal control office in Madison County calls itself).
According to the biographical information on her Facebook page, she started visiting the shelter a year earlier and adopted a schnoodle that had both a neurological disorder and, it turns out, parvovirus.
Because of the dog’s suffering, she and her husband decided to have it put down, but changed their minds and called the veterinarian back 15 minutes later, which was too late.
What followed, she says, was a depression that lasted for weeks:
“I felt like all my joy and happiness left with that schnoodle! my depression went on so long my husband became concerned! i told him there was nothing to replace my loss, and i didnt know how to get over wanting the schnoodle back!”
A month later, her family adopted another schnauzer-poodle mix in Memphis, and named her Tess.
“… Tess came into my life and the healing began for me … But, I sit here crying even now … I will always feel as if I gave up on the (first) schnoodle, like I never gave him the chance he deserved. I will always wonder if I had tried, would he have made it.
She adds, “I hated Jackson Rabies Control for the parvo. I blamed the place for my heartache. Until I went back, a few weeks later….I went back and started taking pictures and sharing their stories. and friend requests came in and I sent more out….and my page blew up with people who had no idea Jackson TN had a kill shelter…
Her other recent posts depict a dog at the shelter who she says was being overlooked because he is black, and a dog who was “allegedly poisoned.”
Posted by jwoestendiek February 1st, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopted, adoption, animals, bulldog, dog, dogs, euthanasia, facebook, gay, gay bulldog, humping, media, networking, news, owner, pets, plea, posts, presumed, shelter, shelters, social media, surrendered
The office of Florida Gov. Rick Scott has shed more light on what happened to Reagan, the dog the governor’s family rescued during his campaign.
Reagan, after his much publicized adoption, disappeared from public view when Scott took office.
The governor said last week that the dog — whose name had been chosen by his fans on Facebook — was returned to the grooming shop where his family got him, due to behavior problems.
The governor told the Tampa Bay Times that the dog never hurt anyone, but it turns out Reagan both barked and bit.
A spokeswoman for the governor said this week that Reagan was returned to the grooming shop after biting a governor’s mansion employee who moved his water bowl.
“The governor and first lady love dogs, and they had to make a hard decision when it was clear that Reagan was very anxious around lots of different people,” Scott spokeswoman Melissa Sellers said.
The dog bite occurred while the governor was in Orlando on Jan. 7, 2011 — three days after he took office.
Mansion grounds employee Jennifer Kinsey was arranging flowers when Reagan bit her on the right hand, according to an incident report released by Scott’s office. The injury required no medical treatment.
Scott introduced the yellow Lab to Facebook readers on Sept. 7, 2010, shortly after he won the Republican nomination. Facebook friends chose the name Reagan from a list of three choices suggested by the campaign and they praised Scott for adopting a dog.
Sellers said Scott flew Reagan back to Naples on his private jet to return him to All Pets Grooming and Boarding. The shop’s owner has told one television station that Reagan’s name has been changed to Pluto and that he now lives on a horse ranch in Collier County.
“The family decided that the best decision for the dog and all those who visit would be to have the grooming business find Reagan a more appropriate home with less people and activity,” Sellers said. “It was a hard choice that sometimes pet owners have to make.”
The Scotts have since adopted Tallee, another yellow Lab.
The governor’s communications directors initially refused to respond when asked about the disappearance of Reagan. Scott, when asked directly, said he returned the dog to previous owners because it barked a lot and frightened mansion staffers.
Sellers said Scott had been out of town and did not recall the biting incident when he talked to reporters.
Posted by jwoestendiek January 23rd, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopted, adoption, behavior, bit, bite, biting, campaign, communications, dog, employee, facebook, florida, governor, groomer, incident, mansion, news, pluto, problems, publicity, reagan, report, returned, rick scott, spokesperson, tampa bay times, yellow lab