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Tag: brooklyn

Really, really, really, really stupid pet tricks: Raja “takes care” of the baby

Believe it or not, the poster of this video is a dog trainer — though, if you’ve got an infant in the house, you might not want him to teach your dog this particular trick.

Alex Garcia, a dog trainer based in Brooklyn, jokingly says he posted this video on YouTube “in part to discourage friends from asking me to baby-sit.”

According to his website, CivilPet.com, he works with dogs, cats, and companion parrots, providing dog training, dog walking, and pet sitting services.

The website contains videos of several “useless dog tricks” he has taught his dog, Raja.

He also writes a blog, and did an entire entry that features step-by-step directions on how to teach your dog to put a baby (or at least a baby doll) into the oven:

“Step 2: Use shaping to get her to put the (toy) baby in the oven. Hold the baby in the position you want it to land, click your dog for investigating it, then grabbing it. When she grabs it, click and shove food in her face so she’ll drop it in the same position. She should hold the baby, you click, she drops it, then gets fed, then withhold the click until she drops it, then click. Gradually, start with the baby further away from the point in which you want the dog to drop it, then you’ll eventually be able to put the baby on the floor …”

In a disclaimer at the end, he writes: “This is not an actual How-To guide; I’m just going over what I went through to train this for anyone who is curious. If you attempt to train this to your dog, you’re doing so at your own risk. I am not responsible if: your dog opens or closes the oven while you’re cooking; your dog puts an actual baby in the oven; you get bit trying this with your resource guarding pet; your oven breaks somehow; anything bad happens.”

We’re guessing Garcia isn’t so quick to shirk responsibility when he’s on the job; otherwise his repeat customers would be few. As he sees it, he’s just making training a little more fun through his useless pet tricks.

“Training provides great mental stimulation, even when the behaviors themselves have no practical application in the real world,” he says.

Other videos on his website are somewhat cuter and not quite so worrisome, including this one entitled “The Police are Coming.”

Dogs banned from new park space in Brooklyn

After decades of delays, New York City and state officials opened part of Pier 1 in Brooklyn Bridge Park on Monday, making available a portion of what may one day be a self-sustaining, multi-use, 1.7-mile-long green space.

But the newly opened area has no space for dogs.

The Pier 1 greenspace won’t be wholly usable until mid-April, when the new lawn — which accounts for almost half of the six-acre pier — is strong enough to open to the public. According to the New York Post, picnics and Frisbee will be allowed on the grass next month, but dogs — even those on leashes — will be banned permanently from the  section of park.

Despite city zoning rules that allow leashed dogs at all parks before 9 a.m. and after 9 p.m., the new city-state park has established special rules to bar canines from the sitting area at all times.

“There will be no dogs, no chairs and no big soccer games on the lawn,” said Jeff Sandgrund, director of operations for the park. “It’s a passive lawn — people can use it within reason.”

“Passive lawn?” Poop on that, some dog lovers say.

“Leashed dogs only allowed on the concrete? How about giving us 10 feet of grass along the border where we can picnic with our dogs, or watch the boats sail by?”complained Bob Ipcar, president of FIDO, a Prospect Park-based dog advocacy group.

Mayor Bloomberg allocated $55 million in city money, on top of the city’s $139-million share of the $350-million cost to build along all six of the waterfront piers. But who will bear the cost of maintenance — estimated at a whopping $16 million per year — is is still being figured out, the Post reported.

Keep your dog, lose your parking space

trumpvillageResidents who have snuck dogs into a no-dogs-allowed Brooklyn housing co-op are being told to get rid of their dogs, or face monthly $100 fines and the loss of their parking spaces.

The co-op board notified residents of  Trump Village of the new enforcement policy in a notice last month.

“I think it’s totally ridiculous,” Marylyn Langsdorf, 66, who lives with her 6-pound Yorkshire terrier, Chelsea, told the New York Daily News. “I think the whole point is to just get money from us.”

Langsdorf and other residents with dogs have already been fined, but they’ve yet to have their parking spaces revoked.

About 1,700 residents live in the three-building complex, and a dozen already have contacted a Manhattan attorney who specializes in pet-related tenant rights.

“It’s a way to extract money from these folks and scare the hell out of them to give up dogs they’ve had for years,” said attorney Maddy Tarnofsky.

Warren Hirsch, a spokesman for the Trump Village co-op board, said “a small number of residents have surreptitiously smuggled in dogs in defiance of the rules and regulations binding them. They have thumbed their noses at their fellow cooperators and dared the co-op to do something about it.”

(Photo: Langsdorf, left, with Chelsea, and another dog-owning resident; New York Daily News)

Is New York dog being held for ransom?

 

Sugar has been missing more than five days now, and it’s looking more like her Brooklyn family’s initial suspicions are correct — that the French bulldog, basset hound mix is being held for ransom.

Drucie Belman’s dog ran off into the snow in Prospect Park Wednesday. About five hours later, a stranger called the number listed on the dog’s collar, and seemed to be demanding payment.

When the stranger asked how much she would give him for the dog, Belman offered $50. The caller hung up, and his callback number was blocked. Another call came yesterday morning. “Good luck with your dog,” was all they said.

“It looks like someone has Sugar and they’re just trying to get money from us,” said Albert Belman.

The family rescued Sugar from a shelter in Hong Kong before moving to Brooklyn, and she had never seen snow before. When a snow day off from school was declared Wednesday, Belman and her two sons — 10-year-old Henry and 7-year-old Leo — took Sugar to the park.

The boys say the dog was so excited by the sight of snow that she pulled free and took off. The Belmans gace chase, then followed her tracks in the snow, but couldn’t find her.

Sugar was wearing tags and has a microchip.

Dog zapped by stray voltage in Brooklyn

Stray voltage has zapped another dog in New York, but the 7-year-old mixed breed named Princess appears to have survived the shock.

Matthew Voto, 80, of Brooklyn said his dog was shocked by the stray current as a friend walked her along a sidewalk on Union Avenue Monday morning. The dog yelped and started to bleed from the mouth, Voto told the New York Daily News.

Con Ed sent a crew of workers to the building yesterday and  found that the building’s owner had installed electrical equipment that caused a “burnout” of a connector inside a basement circuit breaker.  Due to the burnout, readings of 60 volts and 110 volts were recorded near the sidewalk where Princess was zapped.

Con Ed said the weekend storm may have helped bring about the situation because water and salt conduct electricity.

To learn more about the stray voltage phenomenon, which has claimed both dog and human lives, visit Streetzaps.com.

Baltimore animal control officer shot on duty

A Baltimore animal control officer was shot on duty Tuesday night after he seized a dog from a house in the city’s Brooklyn neighborhood.

Jermaine Barnes, 37, who has been on the job four years was shot in the hand as he sat in his vehicle doing paperwork on Patapsco Avenue.

A police spokesman told the Baltimore Sun it was unclear whether the shooting was random, related to the dog he had seized, or connected to another stop he had made on Pontiac Avenue in response to a citizen complaint about five dogs living in a residence. No dogs were found in the home.

Police said Barnes and was sitting in the driver’s seat completing a report when he heard gunshots. One shot shattered his window and hit him in the hand.

Bob Anderson, the director of the city’s Bureau of Animal Control, refused to comment.

Mcdonald’s bars service dog of influential vet

vetdogA disabled veteran is suing McDonald’s for $10 million, claiming he was harassed, beaten, and told that he couldn’t take his service dog inside.

Former Army captain Luis Carlos Montalvan, who inspired Sen. Al Franken’s first legislative victory — a service dog program for disabled veterans — claims in the lawsuit that he was confronted by restaurant workers on two separate visits, and beaten with garbage can lids when he returned with a camera.

Franken, in an e-mail message to Montalvan last week, called it an “awful, bizarre story,” according to the Star-Tribune.

A spokeswoman for McDonald’s USA said the matter is under investigation.

Montalvan, 36, of Brooklyn, filed the lawsuit in October, a week after Congress approved Franken’s provision establishing a pilot program to pair 200 wounded veterans with service dogs from nonprofit agencies.

Franken said Montalvan and his service dog, a golden retriever named Tuesday — both of whom he had met at a presidential inaugural ball — inspired his proposal.

“Captain Montalvan made great sacrifices fighting for our country in Iraq,” Franken said. “I’m not entirely familiar with the facts of this case, but what I do know underscores both the need to help our returning veterans and to raise awareness and increase access for service dogs.”

Montalvan suffered spinal cord damage and traumatic brain injuries during two tours of duty in Iraq that also left him with post-traumatic stress disorder. Tuesday, his service dog, helps him with balance, mobility and emotional support.

Montalvan’s lawsuit recounts a series of events that began last December, several weeks after he completed service dog training. Visiting a McDonald’s in Brooklyn, Montalvan was told by employees that pets were not allowed. He complained and a supervisor later apologized in writing and assured Montalvan that his dog was welcome.

Montalvan’s dog was barred from the restaurant again in January. Two days later, when Montalvan returned with a camera, the restaurant had been closed due to  health code violations, but two McDonald’s workers confronted him and beat him with plastic garbage can lids, he says.

A survivor no more: ASPCA euthanizes Oreo

oreoDespite a last-minute barrage of pleas from animal rights supporters, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals today euthanized Oreo, a pit bull that survived a six-story plunge after being thrown off a Brooklyn rooftop.

Despite four months spent trying to modify her behavior, Oreo was too dangerous and aggressive to be put up for adoption, the ASPCA said.

Oreo was recovering from the two broken legs she sustained when she was tossed from the roof of a six-story apartment building in the Red Hook Houses in Brooklyn. Her owner, Fabian Henderson, 19, pleaded guilty in State Supreme Court last month to a felony charge of animal cruelty and will be sentenced on Dec. 1.

But because of all the abuse she underwent as a pup, the 1-year-old dog was unfit to be around people or other dogs, the ASPCA said.

Shortly after she was euthanized this afternoon, and amid continued messages of outrage from those hoping the dog would be placed in a sanctuary, ASPCA President and CEO Ed Sayres issued a lengthy press release, which appears here in its entirety:

On June 18th, a one-year old Pit Bull Mix named Oreo was thrown off a 6th floor Brooklyn roof top by 19-year old Fabian Henderson. Oreo sustained two broken legs and a fractured rib in the horrific incident.

Amidst a flurry of media coverage and public outcry, Oreo was taken to the ASPCA hospital to be treated for her injuries, and Mr. Henderson was placed under arrest by ASPCA Humane Law Enforcement Agents. The circumstances that led to this most difficult and heartbreaking of decisions are not widely known. In fact, details such as these are usually closely guarded. And yet, what is even more tragic about this story’s ending is that it is an all-too-familiar outcome in shelters across the country. It is the true face of the fight against animal cruelty.

Oreo was a victim of cruelty at the hands of Mr. Henderson. The details surrounding these incidents are largely unknown. However, after Mr. Henderson’s arrest in July, it was learned that several of his neighbors reported hearing the sounds of the dog being beaten for at least 20-30 minutes — and the dog whimpering as a consequence.

After arriving at the ASPCA’s facility, Oreo began to recuperate from her injuries, only to begin showing signs of extreme aggression — with little provocation or warning. As is customary at the ASPCA, the dog underwent a series of comprehensive behavior evaluations. This evaluation system has been used to assess many other dogs and is used to determine the rehabilitation programs needed to prepare them for foster care or placement.

In the case of Oreo, we also sought the assessment of an outside veterinary behaviorist. The outcomes of these evaluations were all the same: the dog was not able to be placed in a home.

Read more »

In happier dog-related sports news …

barkintheparkWith Michael Vick’s return to the NFL this week, and all the bitter and sickening emotions it evoked, I thought we could use some slightly more upbeat and dog-friendly sports news:  

More than 700 dogs and their owners showed up for the Brooklyn Cyclones “Bark in the Park” Game.

The Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals and the Brooklyn Cyclones hosted “Bark in the Park” on Wednesday — an event that drew more than 6,000 guests at KeySpan Park, where the Cyclones fell to the Vermont Lake Monsters.

But it was still a victory — eight dogs from Animal Care & Control of NYC and Animal Haven were successfully adopted to new homes.

In addition, many pet-owners took advantage of the low-cost microchipping services held the day of the event.  “Maddie,” the 6-foot not-so-miniature schnauzer mascot for Maddie’s Fund,  entertained the families and the Cyclone’s players.

“Wednesday night’s event drew more fans that brought their dogs than the previous two years, so it appears that the event is growing. We can’t wait to enhance the event next year in conjunction with the Brooklyn Cyclones’ 10th anniversary,” said Steve Gruber, communications director of the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals.

The Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals, Inc., founded in 2002 and powered by the pet rescue foundation, Maddie’s Fund,  is a coalition of more than 160 animal rescue groups and shelters that are working with the city of New York to find homes for dogs and cats.

(Photo by Rick Edwards, courtesy of the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals)

Brooklyn dog survives six-story fall from roof

oreoA one-year-old dog survived being thrown off the roof a six-story housing project in Brooklyn.

Though all her legs were broken and had to be repaired with plates and screws, she was expected to survive.

Fabian Henderson, 19, was charged with throwing the female dog off the roof of a building in the Red Hook Houses.

Several people called 911 to report a dog had gone off the roof and police found the black and white terrier mix on the ground six floors below, the New York Post reported.

The dog also suffered internal bruising and damage to her lungs. Investigators have nicknamed her Oreo for her black-and-white markings.

Henderson, who claimed the dog jumped off the roof, was charged with of animal cruelty and reckless endangerment.