Zoonosis Training presented by Lollypop Farm, Humane Society of Greater Rochester.
Pet Articles & Info
Do you suffer from pet allergies? Are you afraid you might have to give up your dog on account of your allergies? If so, we can help! Follow the advice bellow to reduce allergy-causing dander in your home and on your pet:
- Wash your pet weekly in lukewarm water using a dander removing allergy shampoo to reduce pet dander.
- Have someone without pet allergies brush the pet outside regularly.
- Vacuum and dust frequently using a vacuum with a HEPA filter.
- Clean pillows, clothing, curtains, cushions, and pet beds often.
- Do not allow your pet in your bedroom to give your body a break from allergen exposure.
Here are some dander-removing products to try: Allersearch, Allerpet D (contains gluten), Four Paws Magic Coat, Nature’s Miracle, and SheaPet.
I didn’t mean to fall hard for Captain Jack. It just happened. One of those crazy, beyond-your-control, heart-pounding love connections you read about in romance novels. Yes, he was short and shaggy with a flat face and a raspy growl. But that isn’t what did it for me. What did it for me was the fact he only had one eye.
One perfectly round, perfectly trusting, chocolate-drop-adorable eyeball that tugged at my heartstrings and made me weak in the knees. According to Captain Jack’s back story, a bulldog had taken out his other eye long before I met him at a Belleville Area Humane Society Adoption event five years ago.
“Get ready ‘cause I’m about to beg you,” I texted my husband, who was reeling in bass somewhere in Kentucky. “There’s this dog I really want to foster. Before you say no, let me tell you about him.”
Jack now shares our bed. He snorts. I snore. And Mark, well, he talks about getting earplugs.
“It was supposed to be temporary,” he reminded me as Jack begged for carrots at the kitchen table.
Did I mention Jack could go vegan in a heartbeat? He prefers mangoes and watermelon to chicken and steak. Not sure why he has a weight problem, though it may have something to do with all the peanut butter.
“I love him,” I told my husband. “But don’t worry. I love you, too.”
“Maybe if I winked all the time you’d love me more.”
“Are you making fun of Jack’s condition?”
“Nothing funny about it,” he said. “That dog has you wrapped around his paw.”
This was never more evident than the day I brought home Lola, a 7-pound chihuahua who took on a Rottweiler before I rescued her from the shelter.
Lola barked at Jack. She pushed him away from his food bowl. She glared into his lone eye and snarled.
Ever the sensitive Shih Tzu, Jack stopped eating his mangoes. I couldn’t stand to watch his self-esteem plummet. So I did my best to embolden him.
“You’re spoiling him, Mom,” observed my son Sam, as I rocked Jack in my arms like a baby while dropping strips of cantaloupe into his mouth. “I know you’re trying to make up for Lola bullying him — but you’ve taken it too far.”
He was right. All that doting had gone to Jack’s head.
My once well-behaved Shih Tzu made me chase him in the yard. He also refused to eat his dog food unless it was garnished with cheese. Not just any cheese. Sharp cheddar with a sprinkling of Parmesan on top.
Last Halloween, I dressed Jack as a pirate with a little patch over his missing eye. He should have worn a black, leather motorcycle jacket. That’s the kind of bad boy he’s become.
These days, Lola and Jack get along fairly well. If they don’t share a mutual respect, they do share a throw on the couch. And though Lola still scarfs down Jack’s dog food, she leaves his watermelon alone.
Yes, for a one-eyed Jack, he’s got it made in the shade.
Well, actually the central air. Jack doesn’t go outside much in the summer.
As soon as I got out of my car, I heard him bark.
With the thermometer soaring 90 degrees in the shade, the Benji-like dog peered up at me from the driver’s seat of a blue Toyota. Sticking his nose out the 3-inch crack atop the window, he barked again: A cry for help.
If I have one super power, it’s parking next to dogs in hot cars. I don’t do it on purpose. It ruins my day. Whether I’m at the mall or Walmart or the grocery store, wherever I go, there they are.
On this particular day, tar bubbled on the cracks of the parking lot at St. Clair Square. I told my then 12-year-old son to get in our car and turn on the air conditioner. It was way too hot for him to stand outside in the full sun.
I pulled out my cell phone and called the Fairview Heights police.
A bicycle patrol officer pedaled up about five minutes later, wiping his sweaty forehead with a Kleenex. Soon after, the dog’s owner moseyed up eating a hamburger.
What happened next was not pretty. Though no citation was issued, I assure you Mr. Burger got the point.
And the point is: Don’t lock your dog in a hot car.
To be generous, some “hot car” offenders love their pets, which is why they take them along on errands. They think, “I’m just running into the grocery store to pick up a gallon of milk. Fluffy will be OK for a few minutes.”
“A few minutes” often turns into 10 or 15. Even if it didn’t, a few minutes is way too long.
Fact: It doesn’t have to be hot outside for it to be dangerous inside a car. Temperature spikes happen quickly and cracking the window doesn’t help. On a mild, sunny day of 73 degrees, the interior of an SUV can heat up to 100 degrees in just 10 minutes. Multiply that by the fact dogs don’t sweat and they’re wearing fur coats … Well, you do the math.
A 2005 Stanford University School of Medicine study showed that a car’s interior can heat up by an average of 40 degrees Fahrenheit within an hour — regardless of the ambient temperature. This means, on a sunny day, even 60 degrees can be too warm to leave a dog in the car.
Yet people do it all the time.
So what do you do if you see a dog locked in a hot car? Well, I’ll tell you what you don’t do. You don’t think, “Isn’t that terrible?” and walk on by like it’s not your problem. You saw it, which means you are that dog’s super hero. Don’t assume the next passerby will don the cape.
“It’s just so confusing,” said Erica Lee-Glover, 34, of Cahokia, who recently spotted a small Shih Tzu locked inside a hot car on the Belleville Walmart parking lot.
“What do you do? Who do you call?”
Lee-Glover, who works at Cato Fashions, spied the little dog on her lunch break. She had intended to run inside Walmart to grab a small salad, but instead, she jotted down the car’s license plate and hurried to the store’s customer service desk.
“They said they would page the license number,” she remembered. “I went back and waited by the car but nobody came. It was over 90 degrees outside. I had to leave and clock back into work with that poor little dog still in that car. I still worry about what happened to him. Now I think maybe I should have called the police.”
She should have. Faced with a similar dilemma, so should you.
“We’ll go out and try to find the owner,” said Sergeant Gary Becker of the Belleville Police Department. “If we think the dog is in distress we’ll try to open the vehicle. We’ll try to educate the owner and look to see if there’s any history of them doing this before. It’s up to the officer’s discretion whether or not to ticket the owner.”
Fairview Heights Police Lt. Mike Hoguet, a former police K-9 handler, said his department also comes to the aid of dogs locked in hot cars.
“Common sense would dictate to call the police if a dog is in a hot car and in distress,” he said.
The sooner the dog gets help, the better. And the sooner the dog’s owner gets a wake-up call, the better, too.
“You wouldn’t leave a baby in a hot car. So you shouldn’t leave a dog,” said Lee-Glover, who still wishes she could have done more for that Shih Tzu. “I know some people will say, ‘Dogs aren’t human, so it doesn’t matter.’ But to a lot of us, our dogs are like our children. And even if they aren’t, you don’t let them bake in a hot car.”
Michelle Meehan Schrader is a writer and animal welfare advocate who sits on the board of the Belleville Area Humane Society.
In case “Because it’s the right thing to do” isn’t enough
Pet lovers know: Adoption is the snuggliest option. Photo by iStockphoto
Thinking of adding a pet to your family? Here are ten reasons to adopt your new best friend.
1. Because you’ll save a life
A shelter pet is more than one in a million—she’s one in 2.7 million. That’s the number of adoptable dogs and cats who are still euthanized each year in the United States, simply because too many pets come into shelters and too few people adopt.
The number of euthanized animals could be reduced dramatically if more people adopted pets instead of buying them. When you adopt, you save your animal and open up shelter space for another animal who might need it.
2. Because you’ll get a great animal.
Animal shelters and rescue groups are brimming with happy, healthy pets just waiting for someone to take them home. Most shelter pets ended up there because of a human problem like a move or a divorce, not because the animal did anything wrong.
3. Because you’ll get a great bargain.
When you adopt a pet, the cost of spay/neuter, first vaccinations and sometimes microchipping is usually included in the adoption price, which means you’ve scored a major deal—a fuzzy deal who will thank you with kisses or purrs for years to come.
4. Because of the bragging rights.
No one needs to see another selfie—unless it’s a selfie of you with the adorable cat you just adopted, like the hero you are! Adopt a pet, post the pictures and let the love (likes) roll in.
5. Because it’s one way to fight puppy mills.
You’re too smart to get a dog from a pet store or online seller—you might as well buy direct from a puppy mill.Puppy mills are “factory style” breeding facilities that put profit above the welfare of dogs. Animals from puppy mills are housed in shockingly poor conditions with improper medical care, and are often very sick and behaviorally troubled as a result. The moms of the puppies are kept in cages to be bred over and over for years, without human companionship and with little hope of ever joining a family. And after they’re no longer profitable, breeding dogs are simply discarded—either killed, abandoned or sold at auction.
Most puppies in pet stores and sold online come from puppy mills. The dogs are sold to unsuspecting consumers in pet stores, over the Internet and through classified ads. Puppy mills will continue to operate until people stop supporting them. By adopting a pet, you can be certain you aren’t giving them a dime.
6. Because your decor will thank you.
Many of the pets from shelters and rescues are already housetrained, which means you’re not only saving a pet’s life, you may be saving your rug.
7. Because all pets are good for your health, but an adopted pet is good for your self-esteem.
Not only do animals give you unconditional love, but they have been shown to be psychologically, emotionally and physically beneficial. Caring for a companion animal can provide a sense of purpose and fulfillment and lessen feelings of loneliness and isolation in all age groups. And when you adopt, you can also feel proud about helping an animal in need.
8. Because you’re environmentally responsible.
You recycle your paper and plastic so it doesn’t end up in landfills, and you know that recycled materials make all sorts of things. A “recycled” pet can make something even better: She can make you happy.
9. Because The Shelter Pet Project will make it super-easy.
We like easy. Go to the Shelter Pet Project to find pets near you, of every size, color, temperament and breed. You want an orange cat who likes ear-scratches on alternate Tuesdays? You can probably find one.
10. Because you’ll change a homeless animal’s whole world.
And get a new best friend in the bargain. Seriously, what could be better than that?