If you’re the type of person who shields yourself from accounts of dogs being treated with extreme cruelty, go away right now and come back tomorrow.
If you’re the type of person whose blood literally boils when you read about animal abuse — and you’d prefer your blood not to boil — go away right now.
Because what’s now clear happened last week to a veteran’s PTSD dog in North Carolina, at the hands of that veteran, isn’t easily stomached — even if we spare you the videos posted on Facebook.
Horrendous as it is, we are sharing it here — in honor of that dog’s memory, in the interest of justice for that dog, and because sometimes, futile as the effort might be, it’s important to at least try to understand the un-understandable.
An ex-soldier who told Facebook friends she had found a new home for her PTSD dog, Cam, actually took the dog into the woods around Fayetteville, where she and her boyfriend shot him multiple times, execution style.
They made a video of it, complete with giggles, which can now be found on Facebook.
“They can be heard on the tape laughing and giggling as the dog was being killed,” Cumberland County District Attorney Clark Reaves said at the couple’s first court appearance on Tuesday.
Marinna Rollins, who is 23, and Jarren Heng, who is 25, have each been charged with cruelty to animals and conspiracy, according to the The Fayetteville Observer.
The dog had been adopted two years earlier by Rollins’ husband shortly after the couple separated. Rollins’ husband called the pit bull mix Huey, and described him as a great and loving dog who once chased burglars away from his home.
When Rollins’ husband learned he was being assigned to South Korea, he said Rollins cried and begged him to let her keep Huey, and he agreed.
While he was in South Korea, Marinna Rollins changed Huey’s name to Camboui, or Cam for short. She also had him certified as an emotional support animal for post-traumatic stress disorder — a diagnosis she had received.
Rollins had joined the Army in February of 2014 and served as a multimedia illustrator before medically retiring from the Army in January of 2017.
Heng had been part of a unit that serves the Army Special Operations Command.
It was just this month that Rollins began posting on Facebook in an attempt to find Cam a new home. She told a friend that caring for him was too expensive.
On April 17, she posted that she had a great last day with Cam and that he was going to a new home.
“Sad he has to go, but he will be much happier where he is heading off to,” Rollins wrote on Facebook.
Heng replied to Rollins’ Facebook post with a smiley-face emoji and the words, “He’s going to have such a great new life.”
Much of what happened after that was captured in photos and videos taken by Rollins and Heng.
Court documents reveal that Heng and Rollins took Cam to an unknown wooded area. Both wore their Army camouflage pants and boots. Heng is pictured shirtless and Rollins wore a pink polka-dotted bra. They sipped Coca Colas and joked as they tied the dog to a tree.
Rollins shot Cam in the head, and then several more times, before Heng asked for a turn and handed her the camera.
“Let me hit him once,” Heng said.
According to court documents, they took photographs of the execution and at least three videos.
Rollins then dragged Cam’s dead body around before shoving him in a shallow grave.
The Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office, in the course of the investigation, found the videos, photos and text messages between the two discussing the shooting.
Although it’s not clear how they got there, the photos and videos ended up on a Justice for Cam Facebook page, described as “a page set up in the memory of an Emotional Support Animal that was brutally murdered by his owner and her boyfriend.”
Bail was initially set at $5,000 for Heng and at $10,000 for Rollins, but prosecutors later had it increased to $25,000 each “due to aggravating factors and the cruel nature of the case.”
“We will work diligently to seek justice in this case,” Cumberland County District Attorney Billy West said. “What we do know about the case is disturbing.”
(Photos from the Justice for Cam Facebook page)
Posted by John Woestendiek April 26th, 2017 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal cruelty, animals, army, arrest, bail, brutal, cam, camboui, charges, conspiracy, cumberland county, dog, dogs, execution, facebook, fayetteville, giggling, graphic, huey, jarren heng, justice for cam, killing, laughter, marinna rollins, murder, pets, photos, pit bull, ptsd, shooting, soldiers, tied, videos, warning, woods
Mark Halperin, a senior NBC political analyst known as a frequent defender of President Trump, has suffered his own Twitter-related embarrassment — and is taking some hits for the disrespect he seemed to show a therapy dog on a cross-country Delta flight
It all stems from a in-air tweet Halperin posted after finding himself seated next to a bow-tie wearing support dog named Charlie. Halperin posted a photo of the dog with the caption, “Seriously, @delta??!?”
Some took that to mean he was taking umbrage to his seating companion, and dog lovers — as is their way — commenced to deem him an apparent snob, asshole, douchebag or worse.
Halperin then — sincerely or not — went into damage control mode.
He tweeted that the main purpose of the original tweet was to show a photo of a cute dog:
“This dog is cute & service, companion & emotional support dogs=best souls on Earth.Point was,on long flt Delta sat dog apart from its owner.”
He elaborated the people were reacting incorrectly to his original tweet, and that he was trying to do too much good at once — delighting followers with photos of a cute dog while pointing out a flaw in Delta’s procedures for not seating Charlie with his owner, a Delta employee who was seated across the aisle.
He said he offered to switch seats with the owner but that doing so was prohibited by “LAX traffic, TSA, redeye logistics & overhead bin issues.”
Then that pesky second side of the story came out.
The dog’s owner says Halperin made no such offer to switch seats.
Anthony Pisano, a Delta flight attendant who paid full fare for both his and Charlie’s seats, gave this account of what happened in first class.
“I had purchased 6A and 6B and Halperin was in 6C. The dog and I fly back and forth from California to NY 2–3 times a month. I am always aware to make sure to get the dog her own seat (she lays on the floor and sleeps) to ensure she doesn’t encroach anyone’s personal space. So I put Charlie (the dog) in 6A where she was great. She was in arms reach and everything was cool. Right before we took off the dog came and sat in between my legs for take off so she was secured. At this point halperin (I had no idea who he was) calls for a flight attendant and tells her that he refuses to sit next to a dog.
“Those were his exact words. At that point I noticed he took a picture of the dog which I just ignored. Next thing you know the lead flight attendant asked if I minded giving halperin 6A. It was so strange he wouldn’t even look or speak to me about it. If he would have asked me I would have obliged, no big deal. I couldn’t believe how rude this guy was carrying on as I sat right next to him. So I obliged, he moved into 6A and left his shoes and a mess in his little first class cubicle area. I politely brought him his shoes and belongings to which he literally looked the other way and that was that.”
(Except for a parting tweet on Pisano’s Twitter page:)
Apparently, Halperin (some call him a Trump lap dog) got the separation he desired from Charlie, the emotional support dog.
As for which version is the most accurate, I can’t say, but I will rank the believability of the subjects involved:
1. Charlie the dog
2. The flight attendant
3. The political pundit
(Photos: At top, Charlie, as pictured in Halperin’s tweet; lower, Charlie, in a parting tweet on Pisano’s Twitter page)
Posted by John Woestendiek April 25th, 2017 under Muttsblog.
Tags: analyst, animals, anthony pisano, charlie, defender, delta, dogs, emotional support dog, flight, flight attendant, lap dog, los angeles, mark halperin, nbc, new york, news, pets, political, politics, therapy dog, Trump, tweet, tweeting, twitter
Borrowing from eHarmony, three women in New England have started an online service that matches those seeking dogs to adoptable dogs that will best fit their personalities and lifestyles.
How I Met My Dog features a detailed questionnaire for potential adopters that asks dozens of questions about a potential pet owner’s tastes and interests.
Those shelters and rescue taking part, meanwhile, provide specific information on the animal’s habits and behavior patterns.
Computer software does the rest.
The goal is to match up would-be dog owners with pets they won’t regret taking home — and will be less likely to return, according to the Boston Globe.
Jody Andersen and Mary Ann Zeman launched the company earlier this year in New England under the belief that adopting the right dog, as opposed to the cutest dog, can make a huge difference in the outcome of that adoption.
Andersen, author of a 2002 book, “The Latchkey Dog,” is a believer in computer-assisted relationships, having met her husband online. She also used the developing software to find her current dog, a Weimaraner named Finn.
“We want you to fall in love at first sight, with a dog you can live with,” she said.
The service is free while in startup mode. Afterward, it will charge $49 to match would-be owners to available pets, and $75 to a current dog owner who wants to rehome their pet. Animal shelters can list their dogs at no charge.
Andersen lives in Long Island, N.Y., Zeman, lives in Connecticut, while Alana Mahoney, who manages the company’s relationships with pet shelters, serves on the board of the Massachusetts Animal Coalition and lives in Hopkinton, Mass.
Andersen said she has received inquiries from 400 animal shelters nationwide that are interested in trying out the new service.
“Every year there’s four million dogs surrendered to shelters,” Andersen said. “How I Met My Dog wants to find a home for every dog, where it will thrive.”
(Top photo: Jodi Andersen (left) and Mary Ann Zeman, cofounders of How I Met My Dog, in Boston, with Andersen’s dog Finn, a Weimaraner; by Jonathan Wiggs / Boston Globe)
Posted by John Woestendiek April 24th, 2017 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopt, adoptable, adoption, animals, beta, computerized, detailed, dogs, eharmony, how i met my dog, match, matchmaking, new england, online, owners, pets, questionnaire, rehoming, rescues, shelters, software, start up
Seems pretty elementary, but apparently it wouldn’t hurt to warn people that, when you must tie your dog’s leash to something, you should make sure that something is secure.
Otherwise you may end up like this woman on the banks of the Thames in London.
The video posted on YouTube notes she tied her dog to a chair outside a cafe on Feb. 16 so she could go in and order coffee.
The dog took off, with the chair following close behind.
The dog dragged the chair to a nearby park — how nearby the video doesn’t make clear — where the owner was able to grab the dog’s leash.
The caption under the YouTube video notes, “The dog clearly loved every second of it!”
But I doubt that was the case.
Some well-to-do dog owners in India have taken to posting public notices of their dogs’ desire to hook up with a canine of the opposite sex — most often one of the same breed.
“Lonely, fair, and handsome, three-year-old Golden Labrador (Ludhiana caste, settled in Delhi) seeks homely female of the same community. Must be blonde, slim, beautiful, well-behaved, well-groomed, smart with good family values,” read one, posted on a wall in Delhi’s ritzy Khan neighborhood.
Other posts on the wall are from a “single and ready to mingle,” setter-retriever mix, and a “spunky” Maltese in search of Miss Right.
It’s being done in a playful spirit, Scroll reported, but it’s not immediately clear whether those posting such notices are having a little fun, truly seeking breeding companions for their dogs, or a little of both.
And if it’s a case of novices jumping on the bandwagon to try their hands at dog breeding, that raises some concerns among animal welfare organizations.
“This is probably the dog owners’ way of showering love on their dog, or just being cute,” said Pallavi Dar, who volunteers at a shelter in Noida. “But how many of them really know that dog breeding – even if you are not a professional breeder – is serious business? You can’t just mate your dog and give away or sell off puppies – you need to have a licence for that.”
Others feel there is nothing wrong with seeking a love connection for their canine.
“If humans can have matrimonials, why not dogs?” asked Atul Khanna, who put up a poster in Khan Market looking for a mate for his dog Moltu, a two-and-a-half-year-old Maltese.
Moltu, though described as both “independent and spunky,” has yet to get any responses. But, his owner said, patience is key when looking for a mate.
Posted by John Woestendiek April 20th, 2017 under Muttsblog.
Tags: advertising, animals, breeding, breeds, delhi, dog owners, dogs, india, khan, mates, notices, pets, posting, purebreds, seeking, wall
A dog who may have spent three days with his head stuck in a jar is recovering at Fort Worth Animal Control.
The 1-year old terrier mix was found wandering the streets of Fort Worth’s Meadowbrook neighborhood last week.
Because the call came in as a dog with his head stuck in a pickle jar, he was nicknamed Pickle by animal control staff.
Which might explain what led to said head getting stuck in said jar.
Animal control officer Randall Mize was the first to respond, and said he discovered the dog laying down, and likely suffering from oxygen deprivation and dehydration.
He estimated that the dog’s head had been stuck for three days, according to CBS in Dallas-Fort Worth.
They were able to pull the jar off his head, and Pickles, or Cheese Puff, will soon be available for adoption.
To see when he shows up as available, watch this page.
Posted by John Woestendiek April 19th, 2017 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: adopt, adoption, animal control, animals, cheese, cheese puffs, cheese snacks, dog, dogs, fort worth, freed, head, jar, news, pets, pickle, plastic, recovering, stuck, video
A little peace, and quiet, and love, and attention — they’re all any of us really want in life.
And maybe even more so when death is on the way.
For humans, hospice care is now big business, but the opportunity for sick and elderly dogs to die in peace and dignity isn’t always there.
And often, their last days are less than peaceful — especially for those whose owners, hoping to avoid the expense of veterinary care, abandon them to shelters or worse.
Seeing that happening too often — seeing them get abandoned at the time they need someone the most — a northern Michigan woman started the Silver Muzzle Cottage, a rescue and hospice for homeless old dogs.
The Detroit Free Press on Sunday took an in-depth look at the organization and the woman behind it, Kim Skarritt.
Silver Muzzle Cottage takes in dogs left behind either by owner choice, or by circumstances, as when a dog’s owner suddenly dies and no one else can care for it.
In two years, she has cared for more than 70 of them. It remains the only such hospice in the state, and one of the few in the country.
“They don’t ask for much when they’re really old,” said the 56-year-old former auto engineer. “They want to be loved and cared for, they want food and they just need a warm place to lay their head at night.”
Five years ago, Skarritt opened a dog boarding and fitness center called Bowsers by the Bay. Through that work, she noticed the pattern of elderly dogs being abandoned in their final days. After calling animal shelters throughout the state, she estimated there were about 900 senior dogs within 500 miles of Elk Rapids needing a home.
Skarritt researched the issue, finding many area shelters were taking in old dogs whose owners had surrendered them, sometimes just leaving them tied outside the shelters at night.
“I kept seeing these 14-year-old dogs and 13-year-old dogs in shelters and needing homes, and I’m going, ‘What is that? Who does that?'”
So she bought an empty storage building next door to her business and opened Silver Muzzle Cottage as a nonprofit rescue just for elderly dogs, which she defines as age 10 or older, or terminally ill but not suffering so much they need to be euthanized.
The Free Press described the inside of the rescue as a “big living room with couches, throw pillows, a fake fireplace with decorations atop the mantle, end tables with vases and a coffee table with a thick photo book about dogs atop it. It looks like a normal house, except there’s a bunch of dogs lounging on the couches like they own the place.”
The dogs aren’t caged at night, which means someone has to be there at all times. Skarritt moved into a small bare bones room adjacent to the living room and sleeps there at night.
About 100 rotating volunteers visit the dogs, take them for walks and car rides and pet and play with them.
Despite their old age, many get adopted — both by volunteers and by those among whom Skarritt works to spread the word about both the plight old dogs face, and the joys of having them around.
If you ask me, the world could use more places like this — for dogs and humans; places that aren’t about being poked, and prodded and prolonged but about being treated with some love, dignity and compassion when the end is near.
Silver Muzzle Cottage is at 201 Industrial Park, Elk Rapids, Mich., 49629. For information, call 231-264-8408, or visit the Silver Muzzle Cottage Facebook page.
(Photo from Silver Muzzle’s Facebook page)
Posted by John Woestendiek April 18th, 2017 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: abandoned, adopt, adoption, animals, compassion, death, dignity, dog, dogs, dying, elderly, elderly dogs, elk rapids, hospice, kim skarritt, michigan, old, old dogs, pets, rescue, sanctuary, shelters, silver muzzle cottage, surrendered