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
A lost dog, stuck in train tracks.
An oncoming N.J. Transit train, in a hurry to make Hoboken.
Not the ingredients for a happy ending.
But there was one, anyway.
The engineer and conductors spotted Sparky, an American Eskimo dog, on the tracks Tuesday morning, on the Bergen county Line in Garfield. He was stuck between the rails and a bridge joint.
Passengers, despite the six-minute delay, approved and brok into applause when the crew and dog reboarded.
“When we came in, they all came, their camera phones out, taking pictures, they were all in good spirits,” train conductor Paul Bowen told CBS in New York.
In another fortunate twist of fate, Sparky’s owner called police in Garfield to report her dog missing about the time NJ Transit reported the one they’d found.
“I was so scared, because I didn’t know where he was,” owner Yvette Osorio said. “I’m very happy and I’m thankful to all of them for saving my dog.”
Posted by jwoestendiek May 16th, 2013 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: american eskimo dog, bergen county, commuters, conductors, delay, dog, engineer, found, garfield, happy ending, hoboken, lost dog, new jersey, nj transit, reunion, sparky, train
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: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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
A Pomeranian in a tuxedo, taking the train back home from an SPCA fundraiser in San Francisco, was stolen after his owner fell asleep.
Kerrin Lanahan was riding a BART train back to her San Bruno home Wednesday night when she dozed off — her purse on one side of her, her Pomeranian, Archie, in a travel bag on the other.
When Lanahan, 31, woke up, she found someone had snatched the bag containing Archie, who is trained to help her cope with anxiety.
“If only they had taken the purse,” she told the San Francisco Chronicle.
Lanahan says she has struggled with extreme anxiety, especially while traveling. She survived a plane crash as a child.
She said Archie was trained to be ”really calm in public in general. When we’re out, it’s all about me and him. He goes everywhere with me. When my anxiety level spikes, he knows to jump into my lap.”
Lanahan said she and Archie left the San Francisco SPCA Bark and Whine Ball fundraiser at Fort Mason late Wednesday, taking a cab to Montgomery BART station and getting on a train at about 11:15 p.m.
UPDATE: Archie is back with his owner, ABC 7 reports. After receiving an anonymous text message, Lanahan passed the address on to BART detectives, who found the dog at a home near the Balboa BART station. They were able to confirm it was Archie through his microchip. Police were questioning a person at the house and said charges were pending.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 25th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, anxiety, archie, ball, bark and whine, bart, dog, dogs, event, fundraiser, kerrin lanahan, owner, pets, pomeranian, san francisco, search, service, sleeping, spca, stolen, taken, theft, train, travel bag, tuxedo
Brody, Diamond and Ella Mae graduated yesterday, meaning they will be leaving the prison where they’ve lived for the past 10 weeks and going to homes with new families.
The three dogs were members of the 16th graduating class of A New Leash on Life, a program in which inmates give shelter dogs the training they need to be welcomed into new homes.
The inmate trainers, all of whom received certificates, also get something more out of the deal — pride, self-esteem, and a job skill, for starters. Several of them spoke about what they’d gotten out of the program during yesterday’s ceremony, noting that dog training requires, above all, patience, compassion and love.
The program at Forsyth Correctional Center, a minimum-security state prison in Winston-Salem, is operated by the Forsyth Humane Society — and it’s one of 16 in prisons statewide.
Dogs from the shelter are referred to the inmates who, with help from professional trainers, straighten out any issues the canines may have, often while simultaneously straightening out their own.
Brody, Diamond and Ella Mae, all wearing bandanas and mortarboards, were each brought in front of the stage with their trainer, and later demonstrated their agility and obedience skills in front of the audience in a nearby field.
Brody, to the left, a one year old pit mix who was originally rescued from a kill shelter as a pup, departed after the ceremony with his new family, Dan and Denise Nelson and their daughter, Mari. They first came across him on the Internet, and later met him at an adoption fair before visiting him at the prison.
Diamond, a Rhodesian ridgeback-boxer mix whose energy level was more than her previous owners could handle, left with her new family, too — but not until after demonstrating her skills on the prison’s agility course.
Ella Mae was destined for a new home as well.
Humane Society officials announced the next three canine members of the program, who will arrive at the prison this week. They’ll include two energetic husky mixes, Jonah and Dude. Dude ended up in the shelter after wandering alone into a pet supply store.
Inmates in the program are guided by professional trainers, provided through the Winston-Salem Dog Training Club, who donate their time to the program. The program receives no state or federal funding, and the humane society covers all medical care, supplies and expenses.
Forsyth Correctional Center launched the program in 2009, but it has been operating at some other North Carolina state prisons since 2004.
You can find more information on the New Leash on Life program — whose slogan is “Changing men’s lives one dog at a time” — here.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 30th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: a new leash on life, animals, brody, diamond, dogs, dude, ella mae, forsyth correctional center, forsyth humane society, inmates, jonah, new leash on life, north carolina, pets, prison, prisoners, program, rehabilitation, rescue, second chances, shelters, train, trainers, winston-salem, winston-salem dog training club
A Massachusetts pit bull is being credited with pulling her owner off the railroad tracks, saving her from an oncoming freight train.
And that, lest you find it hard to believe, is according to both the driver of the train and the woman’s son, a Boston police officer.
The woman survived, uninjured, but the dog — named Lilly — was severely hurt and lost a front leg.
Boston police officer David Lanteigne said he rescued Lilly from a shelter to serve as a companion for his mother, who suffers from alcoholism.
“We saved her life and she saved my mom’s life,” he told WCVB in Boston.
Lanteigne’s mother, Christine Spain, apparently fell unconscious onto train tracks in Shirley last Wednesday.
When help arrived, Lilly was covered in blood but still standing guard over her owner.
“Lilly was either pushing or pulling my mother off the tracks,” said Lanteigne. “There wasn’t enough time and … just prior to the train making impact Lilly had intentionally gotten between the train and my mother, and had taken the hit.”
“I’m supposed to be the strong one. I’m supposed to be here for her, but she’s been so great, so tough through all this,” Lanteigne said of his dog. “It almost seems like she’s the one comforting me and being there for me and making me feel better.”
(Photo: Courtesy of Angell Animal Medical Center)
Posted by jwoestendiek May 9th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: adopted, alcoholism, amputation, angell, animals, boston, christine spain, david lanteigne, dog, dogs, freight train, leg, lilly, lost, medical, mother, officer, owner, paw, pets, pit bull, pit bulls, pitbull, pitbulls, police, pulled, rescued, saved, saves, shirley, tracks, train, video
But, being a big dog’s human, I’d have to agree with Joan Klucha, a British Columbia dog trainer: It’s not entirely right — emphasis on entirely — for big dogs, and their humans, to be held to a higher standard than small dogs.
Klucha, in a column for the North Shore News in Canada — one I’d guess she’s going to take some grief for, diplomatic though it is — points out that little dogs can get away with a lot more than big dogs can.
A case in point is poop, which is what she starts the discussion with, recalling a visit to a client who, once she saw the condition of her home, Klucha assumed wanted help with house training.
“Oh, we don’t care about that,” the client said. “They are little dogs. Their poop is so little we clean it up and it’s not a bother at all. It’s their barking; it’s driving us nuts.”
A little dog can jump up, drop a load, be yappy, be rambunctious, even attack, but it’s often not taken as seriously as when a big dog does those things. As Klucha notes:
“There is a general consensus among many people that the size of a dog determines its behaviour, meaning a small dog automatically means a good dog. Let me set the record straight: The size of a dog is never the issue that determines whether a dog is good or bad. It is always the owner.”
Klucha points to a recent case in Ontario in which a small dog bit a child and the dog’s owner argued her dog was too small to be vicious, and not a threat to anyone.
“If this was a large dog, the outrage over the incident would have demanded that the dog be euthanized,” Klucha says.
“When someone sees a small dog lunging, barking and snapping while pulling at the end of a leash, they chuckle to themselves or don’t give it much thought. If it was a large dog behaving like that, animal control would surely be called out to deal with the situation.
“Small dogs get away with many inappropriate behaviours simply because they are small … Large dogs live under a microscope and are scrutinized for every misdeed.”
When you have a big dog (and mine’s 130 pounds) you do have a heavy responsibility. But small dog owners have a responsibility, too, and while most live up to it, there are those — not you, of course — who think their precious little one can do no harm and let them get away with anything short of murder.
Where the double standard most offends me is when it’s in the form of rules – at motels, in apartment complexes or from other entities that set weight limits under the thinking that big dogs automatically cause bigger problems. That’s just wrong.
Wrong, wrong, wrong.
I’m going to go pet a little dog now. His name is Bogey. That’s him in the picture. He lives a few doors down, and he’s very well behaved. I will try to make sure my dog Ace doesn’t pee on him again. Even though Bogey likes to walk under Ace — perhaps for the shade, perhaps for the view, perhaps for the sake of sniffing – he doesn’t deserve a surprise shower.
Being a big dog owner, making sure that doesn’t happen is my responsibility.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 14th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: ace, animals, behavior, big dogs, bogey, discipline, dogs, double standard, joan klucha, manners, obedience, pee, perceptions, pets, poop, rules, small dogs, standards, train, trainer, training
Today, she’s up and around, and scheduled to appear at a press conference where her sad but inspiring story will be told.
Baltimore City Animal Control picked the emaciated dog up Feb. 13. The bottom third of her rear leg was missing, leading officers to believe she had been hit by a train.
Staff at the Baltimore Animal Rescue & Care Shelter (BARCS), examined her, and promptly dubbed her Kisses because of her sweet disposition and all the licks she gave them, despite the pain she clearly had to be in.
As bleak as her outlook was, BARCS staff — “seeing her strength and will to live” — dipped into its Franky Fund, created to help homeless animals in need of immediate medical care, in hopes she could be saved.
BARCS contacted Essex Middle River Veterinary Center, which agreed to take a look at the dog.
BARCS staff assumed Kisses would have the rest of her leg amputated, but Dr. Joseph Zulty and his staff instead recommended closing the wound and raising funds to get her a prosthetic device.
The surgery was a success and Kisses has been fitted for a prosthetic. A member of the veterinary center staff took her home to provide foster care during her recovery, and BARCS reports that the hospital staff member plans to keep her.
BARCS & Essex Middle River Veterinary Center are holding a press conference this afternoon to tell the story of Kisses.
More information about the Franky Fund can be found at the BARCS website.
(Photo courtesy of BARCS)
Posted by jwoestendiek March 2nd, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal control, animal welfare, animals, baltimore, baltimore animal rescue & care shelter, barcs, city, device, dog, dogs, donate, essex middle river veterinary clinic, foster, franky fund, funds, hit, injured, joseph zulty, kisses, leg, licks, medical, missing, mix, pets, pit bull, press conference, prosthetic, railroad, rear, severed, shelters, sick, stray, tracks, train, veterinarian, veterinary
Two dogs found mutilated along some train tracks in northern California bring the number of mysterious dog deaths in the area to at least seven — by some reports nine — since August.
Foul play is considered a possibility the newest cases, involving a Labrador retriever and a German shepherd, because of the way the dog’s carcasses were positioned, authorities said. At least one of them had been decapitated, according to news reports.
The two dogs were found along the railroad tracks east of the Marysville City Cemetery. Marysville is about 40 miles north of Sacramento.
The discovery of aroused suspicion about a possible link to five other dead dogs found in the town of Linda, according to the Appeal-Democrat in Marysville. All five were found within 10 days in August, and at least two had been shot.
Fox News, meanwhile, reports there have been nine mysterious dog deaths in the area, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Neither of the latest two dogs found were shot, according to post-mortem X-rays conducted by a veterinarian.
Marysville Police and the Yuba County Sheriff’s Department are investigating, and have asked for help from investigators with the Union-Pacific Railroad Police.
“We still need to determine if all the damage was caused by a train or if there was evidence of mutilation prior to them being struck by the train,” sheriff’s Lt. Damon Gil said.
Gil said no definite links between the case have been established. “We don’t want people to panic about their pets,” Gil said. “But it’s certainly piqued our interest and we’ll certainly be looking to dive into those questions and examine the case further.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Marysville Police Department at 749-3900.
Posted by jwoestendiek December 14th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: deaths, decapitated, dog, dogs, german shepherd, labrador retriever, linda, marysville, mutilated, mysterious, northern california, train, yuba county
Cowlitz County deputies arrested Jesse James Clark, 38, of Kelso, and Johnny Lee Jordan, 39, of Longview, on Wednesday, according to a report in The Columbian.
Clark was charged with possession of stolen property and giving false and misleading statements to a law enforcement officer. Jordan was charged with possession of stolen property and extortion.
According to the sheriff’s office, additional arrests and charges are still possible.
The sheriff’s office said Clark and Jordan aren’t facing animal cruelty charges because prosecutors would have to prove in court that they killed the dog. Investigators remain uncertain about who killed Jaggar and why.
Jennifer Thomas reported her dog missing on Oct. 4. A few days later, she said, she received threatening text messages demanding cash and prescription pain medication for the dog’s safe return.
On Oct. 24, the sheriff’s office received a report from a resident who saw the body of a dog lying along railroad tracks in Kelso. It turned out to be Jaggar, who officials say apparently was placed on the railroad tracks and hit by a passing train.
After news reports appeared about the dog being found dead, the sheriff’s office received a tip from a witness who reported seeing Jaggar at Clark’s home in Kelso.
Based on information provided by Clark after his arrest Tuesday, deputies searched Jordan’s home in Longview. There, officials said, they found a cell phone that was used to contact Thomas on Oct. 8.
“This is a felony theft and extortion case,” Cowlitz Sheriff Mark Nelson said in a press release. “It just happened to be that the thing stolen was a dog; someone’s pet and part of her family. And while we’re happy to clear the case with these arrests, we’re all sorry that Jagger was not recovered alive.”
Anyone with additional information about the case is asked to call 360-577-3092.
Posted by jwoestendiek November 4th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal cruelty, animals, bulldog, cowlitz county, dead, dog, dogs, english bulldog, extortion, jaggar, jesse james clark, johnny lee jordan, kelso, kidnapped, killed, pets, railroad tracks, ransom, sheriff's office, stolen, text messages, theft, threats, train