The founder of the dog rescue organization that moved its headquarters into Michael Vick’s old house was charged Monday with animal cruelty, the Daily Press in Hampton Roads reported.
Surry County deputies served a search warrant at Dogs Deserve Better’s Good Newz Rehab Center for Chained and Penned Dogs.
According to court records, they were looking for Tasers and mace allegedly used on the rescued dogs.
Authorities said the search and investigation were prompted by allegations from former staff and volunteers working at the center on Moonlight Drive — the same house where Philadelphia Eagles quarterback lived when he bankrolled a dog-fighting operation.
Dogs Deserve Better founder Tamira Thayne was charged with one count of misdemeanor animal cruelty and one count of inadequate care of animals, also a misdemeanor, according to Surry County Chief Animal Control Officer Tracy Terry.
She’s scheduled to appear Sept. 25 in Surry General District Court.
According to the search warrant, deputies were searching for all paperwork connected to dogs that have been housed on the property since the facility opened in June 2011, including veterinary records and receipts.
The search warrant alleged that “animals are being maced and tased on regular basis” and dogs are being cratedfor long periods, up to 19 hours a day. According to the warrant, injured and sick dogs are not getting proper veterinary care.
Terry declined to discuss what, if anything, was found in the search.
Authorities removed one dog from the kennel, but Terry refused to say why.
Terry said she began investigating July 20 after receiving mailed complaints, including pictures, from current and former employees and volunteers.
(Photo: Adrin Snider / Daily Press)
Posted by jwoestendiek August 28th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal cruelty, animals, bad newz, chained, charged, complaints, dog, dogs, dogs deserve better, employees, former, good newz, investigation, mace, michael vick, mistreated, moonlight road, organization, penned, pets, rehab center, rescue, search, surry county, tamira thayne, tasers, virginia, volunteers, warrant
The man who left his injured dog atop a Colorado mountain, now facing animal cruelty charges, wants his dog back.
But one of the dog’s rescuers want to keep it.
The dog is safe and recovering now, but another doggie custody battle looks to be in the offing, pitting a dog’s original owner against someone who helped save it.
Anthony Ortalani was charged with animal cruelty Friday following an investigation by the Clear Creek County Sheriff’s Office, KUSA reported.
“We base that on information we learned that the dog had been up there for eight days in this rugged terrain. The weather had been inclement on certain days with rain and snow and the fact that he made little attempt to go back up and get the dog or try to make any other arraignments to retrieve the dog and get it back,” Sgt. Rick Safe with the Clear Creek County Sheriff’s Department said.
The dog, named Missy, has not been returned to Ortalani, who faces a court appearance Oct. 16.
“The dog is doing great now and is expected to make a full recovery,” Sgt. Safe said.
But apparently that’s no thanks to the sheriff’s department.
The Clear Creek County Sheriff’s Department is the same agency that Ortalini contacted for help once getting down the mountain. He says they declined to attempt a rescue of his German shepherd
According to Ortalani he was climbing Mt. Bierstadt when his dog’s paws became blistered and too sore for her to continue walking. Ortalani says he tried to carry the 112-pound dog off the mountain but was unable to. He says that attempts by him and his friends to lower the dog with ropes ended up injuring the dog even more.
With a storm approaching, he says, he was forced to leave Missy behind.
Once down the mountain, Ortalani contacted a search-and-rescue group and the Clear Creek sheriff’s department but says he was told it was too risky to send a rescue crew up for the dog.
A group of volunteers managed to pull it off, though.
Scott Washburn was out hiking with his wife when he spotted the dog, 13,000 feet up Mount Bierstadt. He posted photos of the dog on a climbing website, 14ers.com. A group of volunteers was assembled, and they climbed back up and brought Missy down. The hikers took turns carrying her in a backpack down the mountain. Missy, who spent eight days on the mountain without food or water, was taken to a veterinarian who treated her for injuries to her paws and dehydration.
While Ortalani wants her back. Washburn and his wife have asked to adopt the dog.
Ortalani posted his thanks for those who rescued his dog on 14ers.com: “I am at a complete loss of words. My gratitude for the people involved in this is without measure.”
He went on to say, “I humbly beg the forgiveness of the community and most of all my Missy Girl. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart.”
Posted by jwoestendiek August 22nd, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abandoned, animal cruelty, animals, Anthony Ortalani, charged, clear creek county, climbing, colorado, dog, dogs, german shepherd, hiker, injured. Mt. Bierstadt, left behind, missy, mount bierstadt, mountain, pets, rescue, safety, sheriff's department, volunteers
That’s when one or more of the five dogs in her care attacked and killed the 23-year-old woman at her home in Decatur, police say.
Despite that, and the euthanization of all the dogs, her family has set up a fund in her name to support rescue efforts at Loving Hands Animal Hospital, where Carey worked.
“Since the second grade when she read the book ‘Throw Away Pets,’ she vowed to be a voice for all animals,” her parents, Greg and Ellen Carey, said in a statement. “Upon placing her first abandoned animal in a permanent loving home in 2003, she volunteered countless hours with rescue networks and animal shelters. There she did what she loved the most: rescuing animals from untenable situations to find them safe, loving homes.”
LuAnn Farrell, the co-founder of the non-profit Angels Among Us Pet Rescue,” said Carey was known for taking in hard to place animals.
“She was one of the good ones because she did take in the ones nobody else would help,” Farrell told 11 Alive in Atlanta.
Farrell said the young woman’s death “kind of makes us all slip back just a little bit and say this is something that can actually happen,” but that she hopes it doesn’t dissuade people from helping animals in need.
“You know that’s the one thing she wouldn’t want people to do, shy away from rescue. It’s already hard enough. We’re already having thousands of them being put to sleep every day. There’s only so many of us that can do it,” said Farrell.
Carey had one of the rescue organization’s animals, a boxer mix, living with her at the time of her death, as well as two Presa Canarios and two pit bulls, one of which, Napolean, she had adopted six years ago when he was eight weeks old.
She was dogsitting one of Presa Canarios, and it was that dog’s owner, Jackie Cira, who discovered Rebecca’s body after she failed to show up for work at Alpharetta’s Loving Hands Animal Clinic.
Police originally investigated her death as a homicide, but last Thursday they announced she was killed by multiple dog bites.
The dogs were all euthanized Wednesday, with the consent of Carey’s parents, a police spokesperson said.
Cira, in remarks to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, questioned whether it was necessary to put all the dogs down, and why animal control officials made no apparent effort to determine which dog or dogs inflicted the bites leading to Carey’s death. Cira’s dog, Danai, was also euthanized.
Tim Medlin, interim director of DeKalb Animal Control, said public safety was the priority: “I won’t put another person at risk,” he said.
Donations in Carey’s name can be made to www.angelsrescue.org, by putting Carey’s name in the remarks section. They can also be mailed to Loving Hands Animal Hospital, 13374 Hwy 9, Alpharetta, GA, 30004.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 20th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abandoned, alpharetta, angels among us, animals, attacked, bitten, boxer, care, contributions, death, decatur, dogs, euthanized, five dogs, foster, fund, georgia, investigation, killed, loving hands animal hospital, pets, pit bulls, police, presa canarios, provider, Rebecca Carey, rescue, rescuer, shelter, throwaway pets, tragedy, volunteer, volunteers
Buddy, one of more than 200 dogs that lived at the home of a hoarder in California — depicted in the video above — died last week at age 15, but not before getting to spend more than a year in a loving home.
Ida Schillaci Noack took part as a volunteer in a March 2011 rescue effort at the hoarder’s home, in southern California, and ended up, with the homeowner’s permission, bringing Buddy home with her. Three months later the Humane Society of the United States removed most of the other animals from the home. Noack took part in that effort, too.
Buddy spent almost a year and a half with Noack. Last week, the day before she had the old and ailing dog put down, Noack wrote about Buddy on her Facebook page. With her permission, we reprint it here in its entirety:
He is the greatest canine love of my life.
I’ve had other rescues. There was Elvis, followed by Miss Piggy, then Rex (who required special care due to renal disease).
After Rex’s passing, I found Sampson, an affable tank.
In between all of them have been fosters; at one time our house had 5 dogs and 4 cats. All were special.
But there was something about Buddy.
Buddy came from a hoarder’s property. This hoarder, an older woman, lived in a dilapidated house. She appeared to at least have electricity and plumbing. The refrigerator in the kitchen — only the freezer portion was working — contained just a few items: some medication and two pounds of raw hamburger, but no stove to cook it with.
In the middle of the living room there was a another refrigerator — inoperable — along with two crated dogs who had no food or water. The flooring had been destroyed down to the cement, and the walls were coated with a brown scum extending at least two feet up from the floor. At one time the property had over 250 dogs: some kenneled, some crated, many running wild, several pregnant … and most were sick.
It was obvious many of the dogs were from the same litters, spanning generations. They didn’t appear socialized; they might accept food or treats, but then ran and hid. There were dirt dens, and some kennels were only five feet long and two feet wide. The neglect of these animals had apparently been going on for years, but even worse was that the property was located in the desert of California where it was hot enough to melt the glue from our shoes.
The level of noise itself almost required ear plugs. Even in the open outdoors, the smell of feces and urine was overwhelming. In the weeks prior to my arrival several other volunteers had come down with giardia.
In all this chaos, Buddy stood out. He was a shaggy mess in a sea of shepherd and lab mixes. He moved slowly in his kennel. No barking, no jumping, nor did he run and hide. I went in as part of a grassroots rescue, for several weekends we cleaned, fed, watered and did basic medical for the dogs. We were slowly transporting them out as the rescue community could take them in. Those that were extremely sick were taken out right away.
Buddy’s hair was probably 6 inches long – so long I couldn’t see through to his eyes. He kept his head down and once he caught my scent he walked sluggishly over to me.
I squatted down, my body pointing away so that I posed no threat – and I slowly reached out to him. His tail wagged – barely – and he nudged closer. Finally I moved the hair away from his eyes. They were closed. Did he even have eyes? I couldn’t tell. I stayed a few minutes with him, then moved on. There were 200 more dogs that needed food and water.
A few hours later I found my way back to him. He came over to me in the same way and I petted and rubbed him gently.
My friend Kim came over – I told her I wasn’t sure if this old guy even had eyes. She looked at me worried, cocked her head and said, “I’ll give you a thousand dollars to take that dog.”
She repeated herself. Crap. It wasn’t the money, I was already in love with him. There was something about him that made my heart swell, skip a beat, go pitter-patter. Pick one or choose all. I called my husband, another great gift in my life. His response? “Whatever you want, my sweet.” I’m lucky.
So Buddy was loaded in a crate and into my life. The groomers bathed and shaved him. The vet pulled most of this rotted teeth out, and his blood levels were great.
He wasn’t suffering from malnutrition, giardia, mange or any tick-borne illnesses – all of which plagued many of the dogs that had already been pulled. Still, he was mostly blind, partially deaf, very thin, and not even house-broken. But he is perfect in so many other ways.
He has never barked or growled; he will just “purr” when you pet him. He’ll get the zoomies about twice a week till he falls over. He rubs up against me like a cat and then falls into my lap.
I have to carry him in and out of the house and keep him crated at night to avoid late night accidents. He loves his breakfast, dinner, and evening Kong filled with peanut butter.
Buddy is a lot of work, but to me this 15-year-old ragamuffin is worth every bit of extra care, and is worth far more than a thousand dollars. He is priceless and he makes my heart sing. Tomorrow, Buddy will cross the Rainbow Bridge, this has not an easy decision. But we can no longer help him, he will not get better. So tomorrow we will let him go, with dignity, grace and our love.
(Photos: From the Facebook page of Ida Schillaci Noack; top photo by Stella’s Hope)
Editor’s note: Volunteers are the foundation of most animal shelters and rescue organizations. In this feature, we invite shelter and rescue volunteers to share their thoughts. If you’ve had an experience with a particular dog, or a particular program, if you’ve found new inspirations, learned some lessons or just want to write about the day-to-day work you do with animals, send your story along, with photos if you like, including one of yourself, to email@example.com.
All of our “Adventures in Volunteering” posts can be found archived here.
Posted by jwoestendiek July 5th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: 150 dogs, 200 dogs, adventures in volunteering, animal, animal welfare, best freinds animal sanctuary, buddy, california, dead, dies, dog, dogs, downtown dog rescue, experiences, hoarder, hoarding, hsus, humane society of the united states, Ida Schillaci Noack, los angeles, loss, mojave desert animal rescue, pets, red rover, rescue, rescuer, rescues, shelters, southern, stories, surrendered, tales, volunteer, volunteers
Stepping out onto the exercise field with a dog at the Washington Humane Society is a thrilling moment — for me and the dog I’m with.
The dog knows he or she will be going for a walk or doing a training activity. I know that — as a result of the teaching, exercising, or simply socializing — the dog will be better for the experience.
After spending a few minutes walking and working with the dog I’ve taken outside, I think about how great it would be if I could always count on a second volunteer to be there at the same time.
Volunteering should be a team sport because it takes a lot of team work to provide the best experience for the dogs.
Each volunteer should be willing to do whatever is necessary to help the dogs, including exercising them and also providing care for the animals. If one person tries to do only one task, the team suffers.
That’s why I want to encourage others to volunteer at the Washington Humane Society. Volunteering is not a game or sport, but it does require acting in unison and working together, and everyone must work hard to ensure success.
If everyone works hard together more can be accomplished. A true volunteer is committed to helping in all aspects of the care, training, and exercising of the animals. Team work doesn’t always mean that each person gets attention for everything they do. The benefit to the dogs is the reward.
This brings me to a dog with whom I have spent a lot of time at WHS. Her name is Ginger. She has beautiful brown eyes and she loves sitting close to me on the park bench outside. She also loves a peanut butter kong for a special treat.
I also help train Ginger when we go outside. She is very smart and is always looking forward to “sitting” for a treat.
Participating in this “Shelter Enrichment Activity” is one of many things you can do as volunteer.
Ginger never wants to leave my side, and loves all the attention from volunteers. On Saturday, my fellow volunteer, Valerie, and I took out Ginger together with another WHS dog and they had such a nice time cooling off together in the summer heat, sitting in the cool shade of bamboo trees.
These are great moments to share with another volunteer and it is rewarding to know that we helped take the dogs out together and that they were so calm and happy out in the field.
To meet Ginger, stop by the Washington Humane Society Adoption Center located at 1201 New York Ave. NE. To see more of their adoptable pets, visit the website. If you are interested in providing anything extra for Ginger, please contact Katherine Zenzano at Kzenzano@washhumane.org.
Editor’s note: Volunteers are the foundation of most animal shelters – if not the heart and soul, at least the arms and legs. In this new feature, we invite shelter and rescue volunteers to share their thoughts. If you’ve had an experience with a particular dog, or a particular program, if you’ve found new inspirations, learned some lessons or just want to write about the day-to-day work you do with animals, send your story along, with photos if you like, including one of yourself, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted by jwoestendiek June 22nd, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adventures in volunteering, animals, dogs, experiences, ginger, guest posts, humane society, julie stack, pets, rescues, shelters, socializing, trainer, training, volunteer, volunteering, volunteers, walking, washington humane society
Volunteering at the Forsyth Humane Society has been a great experience overall. I mean, besides scooping the “bio-waste,” to put it delicately.
I spent most of my time playing with and walking dogs of all energy levels, backgrounds, and breeds.
And I spent some of my time in a costume, serving as the humane society’s mascot at community events.
Fun as it has been, I have also come to two unsettling realizations.
I have also concluded that with age and time since intake, the chances of an animal’s adoption decrease. A dog who has been there two months stands much less chance of finding a home than a new puppy. Puppies come and go quickly, whereas older dogs are often overlooked.Ideally, all dogs would find homes, and everything would be fine. A perfect world where all dogs have a lifelong home from birth probably will never exist. However, isn’t it morally wrong that the ones who have been caged up their whole lives are the ones that don’t get adopted?
Even if you don’t want to get a dog, you can still make a difference. Volunteer at your local Humane Society or shelter and interact with the animals there. You’ll have that warm feeling of having done something to help pets feel secure during a time of need. And aside from that, it can be fun, too.
Here are some of the things I did this summer at the Forsyth Humane Society, in Winston-Salem, N.C:
I walked dogs (picking up after them as I did so). If someone wanted to see what a dog was like, I’d let them walk the dog and I’d just follow and scoop. If they wanted, they could also take a dog into the playpen outside and play with them (as long as a volunteer or staff member was there).
I also did quite a bit of playing myself, tossing tennis balls to the ball-playing dogs, running with the more energetic ones down the trail, and if they were really hyper, I’d do a bit of doggie “bullfighting.” I’d hold a bone or something, and sidestep at the last second and try to avoid having the bone taken for a few minutes, at which point I’d let the dog grab on and it would become tug-of-war. It was great exercise for both me and the dogs, though I usually wound up being the one worn out first. It’s also quite fun, if you don’t mind one or two accidental scratches here or there from a paw.
But then there’s another side to the volunteering. That’s the real reason to go — the difference you can make in a dog’s life. For me, that feeling came while working with dogs like Truvy, a pit bull.I didn’t know anything about her history at the time, so I took her for a walk like I would any other dog. Someone (I can’t remember who) who was walking another dog said it was good that I was walking her because she was afraid of men, likely as a result of having been abused by one. After learning this, I set myself a goal for the day—to get Truvy to not be afraid of me.
I took Truvy to the end of the walking trail, where I sat down, and after about thirty minutes, she did too, but still cowered when I tried to reach out and pet her. When Truvy finally started to feel safe enough to lie down, a sudden boom (likely a truck on the overpass a couple hundred yards away) scared her, and we were back to square one. So we went to the playpen. It took about forty minutes to get her to try to pick up a tennis ball. She dropped it when I approached her and she ran to the corner. When I was told that it was time to put Truvy in back in her cage and let another dog in the playpen, I sat with her in the cage. She curled up in the corner, and I sat down next to her and started petting her. I sat with my arm around her for a while.
By the end of my two-hour shift (at least half an hour of which was in the cage), Truvy had curled up against me with her head on the inside of my elbow. So I wound up completely filled with that warm fuzzy feeling I mentioned earlier—except in my left arm which was numb from the elbow down.
I also enjoyed volunteering at the events like “Pups in the Park,” where dogs can come to the baseball game with you. Before the game, the Forsyth Humane Society bus, ROVER, parks in front of the stadium, and visitors are invited to walk through it and see some of the animals that are up for adoption.
Some of the volunteers walk the dogs around with “Adopt Me” harnesses on, and others hand out bags to people so they can pick up after their dogs. Then there are the people who sell T-shirts to raise money for FHS, and those who run the games that entertain kids while their parents look around.
And finally, there’s the all-important mascot duty. That was my job of choice at events — even though it got a little hot in there. I walked around in a dog costume, sometimes freaking out the real dogs. Lots of them barked at me, some sniffed me, and one grabbed my tail. Humans waved at me, hugged me and took pictures. Best of all, I got into a baseball game for free.
Do you have to go to these extremes or anything to make a difference? No. Volunteering can mean simply playing with a dog for a few minutes or taking it on a walk. These simple things help a dog learn how to interact with humans so that, when he or she does find a home, the transition can be smooth. It’s a fun, rewarding experience for both you and the animal whose life you improve with every minute you spend with them.
Can we have a utopia? Maybe not. However, we can donate an hour or two at a local shelter and make the world a better place — one pet at a time.
Editor’s note: Volunteers are the foundation of most animal shelters — if not the heart and soul, at least the arms and legs. In this new feature, we invite shelter and rescue volunteers to share their thoughts. If you’ve had an experience with a particular dog, or a particular program, if you’ve found new inspirations, learned some lessons or just want to write about the day-to-day work you do with animals, send your story along, with photos if you like, including one of yourself, to email@example.com.
Posted by jwoestendiek June 19th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adventures in volunteering, animal shelters, animals, dogs, essays, forsyth humane society, guest, guest posts, humane society, joe woestendiek, mascot, pets, posts, rescue, shelter, spca, submissions, volunteer, volunteering, volunteers
Elicia Calhoun, an agility trainer, competitor and speaker, rolled her car while traveling through the Arizona desert last week.
All six dogs aboard were thrown from the vehicle.
What happened next — and you can read the full details at Petweekly.com – is equal parts sad and inspiring.
In the immediate aftermath, other motorists stopped and helped a bruised and battered Calhoun find three of the dogs, all alive – BreeSea and Iceman, both border collies, and Destiny, an Australian shepherd.
Three more were missing, including her 13-week-old Kelpi puppy named Tsunami, who had been secured in a crate in the front seat; another Australian shepherd named Nika; and Tobie, another border collie.
When the paramedics insisted Calhoun get in the ambulance, she refused until bystanders, including a border patrol agent, promised to keep looking for her dogs.
While Calhoun was being treated for cuts bruises and a punctured lung, word of the accident hit the Internet, and, within a matter of hours, 3,000 people had joined in a newly created Facebook group, many of them offering to help.
Calhoun, against the advice of doctors, signed herself out of the hospital to continue searching for her dogs, and learned as she was leaving that Tsunami’s body had been found.
According to the Petweekly.com story, by Deborah Davidson Harpur, volunteers were showing up to help in the search by then, and others were offering their assistance from afar, including animal communicators, pilots, ranchers who lived in the surrounding area, and HAM and CB radio operators. Someone even volunteered a military heat-seeking device.
By then, the number of members of the Facebook group had grown to 6,000.
Sadly, Nika’s body was found in the median of the freeway. With the three surviving dogs found initially, and the two later found dead, that left only one unaccounted for — Tobie
Elicia slept outside that night, in case Tobie came to look for her, and other volunteers slept in their cars or camped alongside the road before resuming the search for the remaining dog the next day.
That morning, Tobie was spotted by a volunteer. Elicia rushed to the location, spotted the dog running down the highway in front of a truck and eventually got Tobie to come to her.
Iceman, Destiny, and Breesea have some minor injuries, but they, and Tobie, who had been hit by a car, are expected to fully recover in the coming months.
Calhoun, on Facebook, offered thanks to all those that helped:
“Words cannot express my gratitude. I have just been home a few nights and am finally starting to absorb the impact of what has transpired. Walking into my house that first night was indescribable. My life is changed in so many ways now. I realize how blessed I was in surviving this crash.”
Posted by jwoestendiek June 18th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: accident, agility, agility dogs, animals, arizona, australian shepherds, border collies, breesea, car, community, competitor, crash, desert, destiny, dogs, ejected, elicia calhoun, facebook, group, iceman, lost, missing, pack, page, pets, rollover, search, speaker, thrown, tobie, trainer, tsunami, vehicle, volunteers
Volunteers at the “no-kill” Westchester Shore Humane Society in New York are accusing the animal shelter’s directors of cruelty, stealing from the charity, mismanagement and euthanizing hundreds of animals.
A lawsuit claims the society’s president, Nina Ryan, and her husband and board secretary, John Ryan, neglected animals in the shelter’s care. Vice President Marcia Halley is also named as a defendant in the lawsuit.
It also alleges, based on medical records, that the shelter euthanized hundreds of animals, even though its website claims a no-kill policy, according to The Journal News.
The plaintiffs want the court to remove the Ryans and Halley from their positions, order an accounting of the society’s assets, and force the Ryans and Halley to pay at least $150,000 in damages.
Fourteen volunteers and society members filed the April 24 lawsuit in the state Supreme Court. It also accuses the Ryans of renting a neighboring house owned by the society and keeping the proceeds for themselves, and of running a for-profit animal boarding business at the shelter, and using donated food to feed the pets boarded there.
John Ryan, who is also executive director of the Legal Aid Society of Westchester County, wrote in an email to the newspaper that in the past month he and his wife have spent $11,997 of their own money to fix up the property and pay bills.
He said he and his wife took a $30,000 home equity loan to give to the society, a loan the couple said they forgave years ago.
The Ryans and Halley also are trouble with the state Attorney General’s Charities Bureau, according to the newspaper. The bureau warned the society in February that it was delinquent in filing financial statements. State law prohibits a delinquent organization from raising money.
The Westchester County Department of Health says the shelter operated without a license for several months this year.
Health Department spokeswoman Caren Halbfinger said inspectors found healthy animals and a clean shelter during a visit last week, but she noted that its license expired at the end of 2011. The society reapplied weeks ago for another one, but the process is still not complete.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 8th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal welfare, animals, delinquent, directors, dogs, euthanasia, euthanizing, financial statements, harrison, john ryan, lawsuit, license, marcia halley, mismanagement, new york, nina ryan, no-kill, pets, shelter, shelters, stealing, volunteers, westchester, westchester shore humane society
Cricket has only been at the Forsyth Humane Society for a couple of days, but already the rubenesque Chihuahua has been on a special outing.
Tuesday night, Cricket, along with two beagle siblings named Daisy and Boomer — who are also up for adoption — were taken to Pups in the Park, one of five dog-friendly evenings of baseball planned this summer by the Winston-Salem Dash.
The Forsyth Humane Society, a sponsor of the event, will be featuring some of their adoptable dogs at each of them.
Cricket — and we’re guessing the dog was named after the insect as opposed to the sport – seemed to take all the festivities in stride. Not that Cricket, who has been put on a diet, was striding that much.
More often, the portly pooch was being held by one of the many humane society volunteers on hand to help out.
My son and I met Cricket earlier in the day when we showed up for volunteer orientation at the Forsyth Humane Society, where we’ll be pitching in from time to time in the weeks ahead.
Cricket, Daisy and Boomer all arrived at the game in the humane society’s mobile unit.
All were outfitted in “Adopt Me” vests and mingled with arriving fans.
Since we were volunteering, Ace stayed home, but I was reminded of him every time I saw this dog (left), his lookalike, except for a white patch on her chest. Coco was adopted from the humane society last year.
We also ran into our old friend Darwin, a three-legged beagle we met during a Pups in the Park event last season.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 25th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopt, adoptable, adoption, animals, baseball, baseball games, beagles, boomer, chihuahua, cricket, daisy, dog friendly, dogs, forsyth county humane society, minor league, pets, pups in the park, volunteering, volunteers, winston salem dash
They’re called the “Pit 6,” the scarred survivors of a group of nine pit bulls seized two years ago in an animal cruelty case that appeared to have some ties to dogfighting.
This week, as the man they were taken from heads to court for sentencing, the dogs, who might otherwise have been put down, are getting close to being put up — for adoption.
Their long road to rehabilitation is documented in an excellent story that appeared in yesterday’s Baltimore Sun — one that looks at the plight of pit bulls nationwide and the surge of compassion for them, and avoids the common news media errors of identifying them as a single, stereotypical breed.
The Pit 6 — four of whom are now staying at the Baltimore Humane Society in Reisterstown — were seized in two separate visits by county animal control officials to Larry Alston’s home in the Woodlawn area.
Alston had been living in Beaufort, N.C., when animal welfare officials there seized 17 of his dogs. He managed to get some of them back, and moved them to Baltimore. Based on a tip to Baltimore County Animal Control from officials in North Carolina, county police and animal control officers paid him a visit.
They found scarred, malnourished and whimpering dogs in metal cages, filled with urine and feces and covered with tarps. They seized seven dogs, then returned in February and seized two more.
In early November 2010, Alston was arrested and booked on charges of mutilating an animal, as well as drug and weapons charges — 22 counts in all.
In August of 2011, he entered Alford pleas to the seven animal mutilation charges, and the other charges were dropped. An Alford plea is not an admission of guilt, but an acknowledgement that there is enough evidence to convict.
He faces a maximum penalty of three years in prison on each count.
During the much-delayed court case, the dogs were held at the county animal control shelter in Baldwin, where, upon their arrival, they were examined and found to have been ”severely underfed.” They ”had lots of scars of undetermined nature,” and one dog’s teeth had been painted silver.
But this spring, when local animal advocates learned about the case, they began organizing to try to save the dogs from euthanasia, the fate they feared would be ordered once Alston was convicted.
Three had died by then. Two broke through a fence at animal control and killed each other. A third was euthanized on the recommendation of a behaviorist who determined that the dog would not be able to adapt to life as a pet, according to animal control. Humane Society staff thinks the dogs were used for breeding, and as bait dogs.
In late September — with Alston’s case resolved — a group of 20 animal welfare advocates, including Marty Sitnick, associate executive director of the Humane Society, went to the county shelter to remove the dogs and take them to a private kennel in Baltimore County.
As the Sun story reports …
“That left six: five females and one male, the “Pit 6,” as they have come to be known: Michelle, Tippy, Bridget, Shelley, Meme and Meris.
“On the morning of Sept. 24, a caravan of some 20 animal welfare advocates rolled into the county shelter on Manor Road. Not knowing what to expect of the dogs, Sitnick said, they came equipped with muzzles and spray shield to ‘keep everybody safe.’
“The first dog was ‘all wiggly’ with excitement, he said, and was ‘licking faces, my face. By the time we took the third one out, it was kind of like Woodstock for pit bulls … These six dogs love people.’
Since then, four of dogs have been moved to the Baltimore Humane Society and two remain at the kennel.
Michelle will likely be the first to become available for adoption — probably in another four to six weeks, according to Sitnick.
When they do become available for adoption, it will likely be with conditions. In Michele’s case, for example, she won’t be permitted to go to a home with another dog, and will require a fenced yard.
Members of the “Pit 6″ won’t be rushed into adoptive homes, Sitnick said.
“We need to be extremely conservative in our evaluation of them,” he said. “We are going to take our time … We want to be able to point to these dogs as an example.”
Posted by jwoestendiek December 11th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: advocates, american staffordshire terriers, animal control, animal cruelty, animal welfare, bait dogs, baltimore, baltimore county, baltimore humane society, beaufort, breeders, breeding, courts, cruelty to animals, dog fighting, dogfighting, larry alston, malnourished, north carolina, pit 6, pit bulls, pitbulls, rehabilitation, scarred, seized, sentencing, volunteers