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Tag: pspca

New York’s state dog could be the mutt

Two New York state legislators plan to introduce a bill today to name an official state dog — and they’re suggesting it be the mutt.

Assemblyman Micah Kellner, an Upper East Side Democrat, and State Senator Joseph E. Robach, a Rochester Republican, are proposing the legislation.

If passed, New York would join about a dozen states that have named state dogs, including the Chesapeake Bay retriever in Maryland, the Great Dane in Pennsylvania, the and the Boston terrier in … take a wild guess.

(If you think you know your state dogs, take this quiz — or, if you’re a cheater, go straight to the answers.)

No state has chosen the mixed breed — that most prolific of all dogs — to represent its state.

In New York, a spokesman for Kellner said the assemblyman would choose a rescue dog — as in rescued from a shelter — to symbolize the need for people to adopt pets from animal shelters and animal protection groups. Kellner has no dogs of his own, but he has provided foster care for several.

“He’s a huge advocate for animals in need,” the spokesman told the New York Times.

Also appearing at the announcement of the proposed bill will be Kim Wolf’s dog, Sarge Wolf-Stringer, a Philadelphia dog who was rescued in 2009 from an abusive owner by the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and who now works with the elderly and hospital patients as a certified therapy dog.

(Photo: A Baltimore mutt named Martini)

Dogfighters raided in Philadelphia

20 Arrests In Dog-Fighting Ring Bust: MyFoxPHILLY.com

Two raids in as many days led to the seizure of about 20 dogs and the arrests of what Philadelphia police and the Pennsylvania SPCA say were some of the the leaders of one of the city’s largest dog-fighting rings.

In this morning’s raid, in the 2800 block of Boundinot Street in Kensington, at least a dozen dogs were rescued, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

In a raid last night in South Philadelphia, about 20 people were arrested when authorities broke up a dog fight in progress, according to Fox News.

“When we entered the property, the dogs were actually engaged in a fight in a ring in the front bedroom of this property,” said the PSPCA’s head of investigations, George Bengal. “This was a fairly large operation. These gentlemen have been on our radar for quite some time for dog fighting. This is literally months and months of investigation work that resulted in this arrest tonight.”

“Some of the biggest fighters in the city are here,”  Bengal, said.

PSPCA officals called the home in the 2600 block of Garrett Street, in the city’s Gray’s Ferry section, a “house of horrors.”

The dog that ate Philadelphia

Looking at the photos Kim Wolf has been posting on her Facebook page of late, you might think her beloved pit bull is on a mission to gobble up the athletically-inclined on the streets of Philadelphia.

Actually, the closest Wolf’s 8-year-old pit bull, Martha Washington — a therapy dog in training —  has come to harming anyone is drowning them with “her sloppy kisses.”

“I took this picture as she was sailing out the car window on her way to “charm school” at Opportunity Barks,” Wolf said. “The background is the Schuylkill River along Boathouse Row in Philly.”

(No animals or humans — not the bicyclist or or the jogger — were harmed in the making of these photos.)

Martha, aka “The Donkey,” was adopted from the Philadelphia Animal Control Shelter, and is one of six adopted dogs who share a home with Wolf, a geriatric social worker who formerly worked with the Pennsylvania SPCA.

“My two passions in life are: advocating for elders (humans!) and advocating for dogs. So naturally, I was drawn to my two “elderbulls” (i.e., elderly pit bulls), Sarge  and Martha Washington.”

Sarge, 15, is a certified therapy dog, working with Pals for Life. He visits nursing homes, rehab centers, and libraries throughout the Delaware Valley. He and Wolf also volunteer with Citizens for a No-Kill Philadelphia  as “humane educators.”

“We visit Philly schools teaching students about responsible pet ownership, kindness towards animals, and the human/canine bond. Sarge and I also do “freelance” visits at schools, libraries, churches/synagogues, and any other place that’s interested in learning about animals…..especially pit bulls!”

Wolf also authors a a blog called “Elderbulls,” for which Sarge and Martha Washington are columnists. Wolf says the blog was inspired by a Betty Friedan quote — one she says guides her as both a geriatric social worker and an advocate for older dogs:

“Aging is not ‘lost youth’ but a new stage of opportunity and strength.”

(Photos by Kim Wolf)

Infection prompts PSPCA to empty shelter

The Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals plan to remove all the animals from a city shelter and disinfect the building after a dog died of a rare illness last month.

The PSPCA will place the dogs and cats with animal rescue agencies around the region.

PSPCA officials say the death of a 3-year-old chocolate Lab last week from a viral infection prompted the decision to empty and clean the building.

Officials quarantined the PSPCA shelter on West Hunting Park Avenue last year after an outbreak of the same illness that killed at least six dogs. The infection was identified as Streptococcus zooepidemicus, or “strep zoo”

While the PSPCA disinfected the shelter after last year’s outbreak, PSPCA chief executive officer Sue Cosby said it’s possible the strain may have remained.

“It could be we never completely eliminated it from the building,” she said.

Cosby said all the dogs from the shelter will be placed with animal-rescue agencies across the region, and only new dogs will be admitted after the cleaning.

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, health issues have plagued the shelter for years.

Bill Smith, founder of Main Line Animal Rescue, said the of the 300 dogs and cats he had taken from the PSPCA in the last year, virtually every one had some form of illness, ranging from mild upper-respiratory infection to strep zoo.

The building itself, a former warehouse, is apparently at the root of the problem, the Inquirer reported. It lacks adequate air circulation and  a quarantine area where staff can isolate incoming dogs.

“It was not built to house animals,”  said Melissa Levy of the Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society, which rescued 2,200 animals from the shelter last year. ”When the city established it as an animal-control shelter, they paid no attention to how the building needed to be outfitted.

“It’s a hotbed for disease,” she added. “The problems are not going to go away. The PSPCA is doing what they can do, but they’re working with a sick building.”

Pennsylvania ups reward for dogfighting tips

Authorities in Pennsylvania are offering up to $5,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of anyone involved in dogfighting.

The reward was announced Monday in Philadelphia by Attorney General Tom Corbett and The Humane Society of the United States. About 40,000 people are believed to be involved in dogfighting across the country, Corbett said.

The reward also applies to cockfighting.

The Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PSPCA) says it has received more than 400 complaints about dogfighting in the first six months of this year –  up from 245 complaints during all of 2008.

The announcement came the morning after convicted dogfighter Michael Vick played in his first regular season game as a Philadelphia Eagle.

Read more »

Cat found duct taped in Philadelphia

ducttapecatA cat bound in duct tape was found abandoned in North Philadelphia, and a $1,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the conviction of her abuser.

“Whoever did this is very sick,” said George Bengal, director investigations for the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, which is headquartered in North Philadelphia.

A resident of the 2200 block of Edgley Street found the cat yesterday afternoon, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

Nicknamed “Sticky” by workers at the PSPCA, the cat was sedated so the tape could be cut away and saved as evidence. She is reported in good health.

“She was purring while we were preparing to take the tape off, while we were getting her sedated,” said Gail Luciani, PSCPA spokeswoman. 

The PSPCA asks that anyone with information about the case call its cruelty hotline at 866-601-7722.

PSPCA’s graphic anti-dogfighting message

The Pennsylvania SPCA, while it’s not among those animal welfare organizations offering a bounty for taking down Michael Vick, is still sending out a strong anti-dogfighting message — most recently, this one.

The PSCPA, which says it is investigating an increasing number of dogfighting cases in Philadelphia, takes in thousands of pit bulls every year – many of them victims of abuse that end up getting euthanized.

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