Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Friday, December 11, 2009

Fox Fur Business

Most people don't realize how bad the fur trading business has become. Most of the conditions fur-bearing animals face in fur farms is not just inhumane, but downright evil. Disregard for life does not begin to describe the conditions these animals are faced with.

Often, these animals live in a small wire cage their entire lives, malnourished and driven insane by their living conditions, until they are finally beaten and skinned alive for what the industry is now calling "fun fur".

How can you help? Simply DO NOT BUY FUR!

Check out the Fox Fur Business News website today for more information about this cruel and inhumane industry, and to find retailers that are fur-free!

A Doggy Christmas

I dedicate this video to my dog and tree-trimming assistant "Bear". Enjoy!

Didn't You Get My Christmas Card?

Just in time to get you in the mood for the holidays!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Montcalm Shelter in Michigan - R&R Contract Needs to End NOW!

This is an update to previous posts on the animal shelter in Montcalm County, Michigan:

Action Alert - Montcalm Shelter in Michigan - R&R Contract Needs to End NOW!

The Blue Ribbon Committee recommended that the Montcalm County Animal Shelter Contract with R&R be ended on April 30th. The board of commissioners will consider the recommendation at their meeting on April 27th.

Thanks to Committee members Steve Crouse, Dr. Carpenter, Fran Schuleit, and Rhonda Waldorf, who put the rhetoric aside, took a hard look at the facts, did the research and came up with the UNDISPUTABLE reasons to END IT NOW!

We are in need of your POLITE letters and faxes to the commissioners before their meeting on April 27th to vote on the contract (contact info below). Remember to thank the committee for all their hard work and emphasis on to the commissioners that the committee recommendation was on an analysis of the facts and hard research - not just a knee jerk reaction - and that this was the very reason to appoint the committee - to evaluate the situation and come up with a recommendation that had the best interests of the county and its citizens in mind.

Some points to mention in your letters and faxes:

Animal shelter recommendations

Recommendations for the Montcalm County Animal Shelter that the County Board of Commissioners will consider on April 27:

Citizens advisory board
  • The board would help with fundraising, goal planning, updating the policy and procedure manual, establish a responsible pet ownership education program, work with rescue groups and community leaders, assist with adoption protocols and advertising animals up for adoption. Initial members would be Animal Control Director Patty Lentz, Fran Schuleit of Greenville, Dr. Randy Carpenter of Greenville, Rhonda Waldorf of Sheridan, District 1 County Commissioner Ron Blanding, a member of the veterinary advisory board and a county resident at large.
Veterinary advisory board
  • Local veterinarians would consult with shelter staff on health and safety issues for animals and pet sterilization. Initial members would be three veterinarians from the county, a citizens advisory board member and Lentz.
Action plan for policies and procedures

  • Implement a new software program already purchased to track animals in the shelter by April 30.
  • Begin using a new microchip scanner that was donated.
  • Get new signs.
  • Purchase a secured safe to hold euthanization drugs.
  • Provide more office space.
  • Build kennel partitions.
  • Install eye wash stations.
  • Provide a new medical room to be set up by the veterinary advisory board.
  • Complete staff training on officer safety, animal bites, cleaning, adoptions procedure, transportation, when to involve police, emergencies, dog fighting, when to involve the DNR, use of restraints, temperament testing and nutrition.
  • Allow the citizens advisory board to review the county's recently amended animal control ordinance again.
  • Install water bowls in each kennel and do away with the existing spigot system.
  • Follow up to make sure people who adopt a pet get it spayed or neutered.
  • Improve community outreach by working on education materials, launching a Web site and educating the community about pet ownership.
  • Encourage philanthropy by launching endowment through a local community foundation.
Disposal of animals
  • Have animal carcasses cremated at Sleepy Hollow Pet Cemetery in Byron Center or in a crematorium that can be donated instead of giving them to R&R Research to sell.
Disposition of animals
  • Work better with other animal shelters and rescue groups to ensure more animals are adopted. People could take their animals back from the shelter and bring them to a research institution if they choose.
We need letters mailed or faxed to the Commissioners (an e-mail is too easy to delete). PLEASE write, fax or call today. PLEASE KEEP IT PROFESSIONAL!!! Fax # for the commissioners - 989-831-7375!

District 1- Ron Blanding
403 W High Street
Greenville, MI 48838
(616) 225-7972

District 2- Tom Lindeman
8060 S. Backus Road
Greenville, MI 48838
(616) 754-4918
tblindeman [at] sbcglobal.net

District 3- Ron Retzloff
786 S. Senator Rd.
Crystal, MI 48818
(989) 235-6827
comish [at] casair.net

District 4- John Johansen
3503 S. Monroe Rd.
Greenville, MI 48838
(616) 754-5375
johm [at] pathwaynet.com

District 5- Carl Paepke
18419 Stanton Rd. NW
Pierson, MI 49339
(616) 636-5692

District 6- Ron Baker
PO Box 91
Howard City, MI 49329
(231) 937-5465
rbaker68amx [at] hotmail.com

District 7- Pat Carr
10397 Almy Rd.
Lakeview, MI 48850
(989) 352-8129

District 8- Roger Caris
8984 E. Deaner Rd.
Vestaburg, MI 48891
(989) 268-5875
rbaker68amx [at] hotmail.com

District 9-Steven Crouse
8701 Session Rd
Carson City, MI 48811
(989) 235-4696
rbaker68amx [at] hotmail.com

Monday, November 30, 2009

Cesar Millan on the Magic of Fostering a Dog

This is a FANTASTIC article from the Cesar Millan blog on fostering:

Being fostered is a wonderful opportunity for a dog to prepare for his forever home. He will have more one-on-one time with humans, and he can experience more of the world around him instead of being limited to the confines of a shelter. It can significantly increase his chances of fitting in with his next family.

And of course, his foster parents can make sure his new family is the right fit by helping them to understand his energy level, any issues that are being worked on, and any special needs the dog has.

Fostering isn't just good for the dog – it can do wonders for the human as well! A dog needs daily exercise, and that helps us to get up, get out of the house, and experience simplicity. Dogs help you to appreciate the world around you. They smell the ground so intensely. They look at the trees as though they are seeing them for the first time. It helps us to remember the wonders that we take for granted. So if you're stressed or anxious, it goes away for that moment when it's just you and the dog. People say I do magic, but it's the dogs that do magic. In an instant, they can help you feel calm. They just come in and make it happen without a word.

But I think it's important that you don't form too much of an emotional attachment with the dog. Remember, you are preparing the dog to detach himself from you and live with another human. If not, it can be damaging to his relationship with his new family. He can move on, but it will just make it harder for him. The way I think this can be achieved is by switching dogs. They use this system to train dogs for the blind. If people stay with a dog for a month and then get a new one, the dog doesn't become confused. When he is in his forever home, he will know he is with his new pack! As a professional, I have to do this with dogs I work with. If I am going to help a dog that is not mine, I can't connect all the way. I need to let the owners finish it!

Stay calm and assertive!

Cesar Millan

Click HERE to read this article on Cesar's Way!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Toledo Dog Warden Skeldon Resigns

A most pleasant follow up for the Lucas County post on the blog. Mr. Skeldon has resigned!!

From the November 19th issue of The Toledo Blade:

Skeldon says he will step down Dec. 31,
but Konop wants him dismissed immediately

Lucas County Dog Warden Tom Skeldon has submitted a letter of resignation, effective Jan. 31, but Commissioner Ben Konop wants the warden to leave his office immediately.

"I am not comfortable with him as our dog warden for even another day," Mr. Konop announced at a Thursday afternoon news conference.

The commissioner, a vocal critic of the warden, commended Mr. Skeldon for "having the courage" to step aside but said he plans to introduce a motion at Tuesday's commissioners' meeting for his immediate dismissal.

If that motion fails, Mr. Konop said he will then seek the warden's suspension until his retirement date.

Read the full article at:

From Barbara McGrady of
Please write "Notes of Thanks" to Jean Keating who will share your comments with other Ohio Coalition of Dog Advocates. They worked hard to create the positive changes happening at the Lucas County Dog Pound!

Email: canineadvocate1 [at] yahoo.com

We have Jean and her group to thank for this

Friday, November 20, 2009

Demand Justice for Oreo

Pets Alive Animal Sanctuary has started a petition to demand the resignation of ASPCA President Ed Sayres. According to the petition, Pets Alive says:

"Ed has demonstrated that he no longer has the capacity to act in the best interest of the animals in their care.

One of many examples is the case of Oreo. The MIRACLE dog, thrown from a six story building, and LIVED. After getting her broken bones fixed and her health restored, Mr. Sayres believed her to be a danger to society and ordered her euthanasia.

Pets Alive, a no kill animal sanctuary - one of the largest in the United States offered sanctuary to Oreo and was rebuffed. When the head of the ASPCA decided that DEATH is better than rehabilitation under a well respected organization, it is time he GETS OUT.


Also see the following article on Gothamist.com:
Oreo The Dog Is Dead, Blame Game Is Not

Although I understand that some abused dogs can be extremely difficult to rehabilitate, I still feel that every effort should be made to at least try. Perhaps the ASPCA didn't have the qualified personnel to understand and correct Oreo's behavior issues. However, other options should have been considered before making the decision to euthanize. We have several good rescues and sanctuaries that are well qualified to deal with abused, aggressive animals. We also have Cesar Milan who has performed miracles with this type of dog. I'm sure Mr. Milan would have been happy to access Oreo's behavior, provide a much more accurate evaluation, and possibly even been able to get her back on track to becoming a good canine citizen. So sad that the ASPCA believes they are above asking for outside help and chose to kill instead.

Perhaps we should choose to reconsider our financial support the next time we receive that URGENT request for donations so they can SAVE another animal in need.

The ASPCA spent lots of donated money to save this dog's life... only to end up killing her. Does anyone else, besides me, see anything wrong with this?

A Boy and His Dog

This is a really great poem for all dog lovers!

A Boy and His Dog

I want my boy to have a dog
Or maybe two or three.
He'll learn from them much easier
Than he will learn from me.

A dog will teach him how to love
And bear no grudge or hate,
I'm not so good at that myself
But a dog will do it straight.

There never yet has been a dog
That learned to double-cross,
Not catered to you when you won
Then dropped you when you lost.

I want my boy to have a dog
To be his pal and friend,
So he will learn that friendship
Is faithful to the end.

By Marty Hale

Animal Shelters Send Pets to Research Facilities

I received the following information from a fellow rescuer:

By Jennifer Vegas | Mon Nov 16 2009

As a former animal shelter worker, I was horrified to learn that five U.S. States require shelters to send animals that aren't adopted to research facilities.

The states are:
*If a research facility makes a request

The Humane Society found that 30 other states also either permit shelters to surrender animals for research under certain circumstances, or have no laws concerning the matter, meaning shelters can make the decision on their own.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has been reporting on this, and the matter was recently also covered by Utah's desert News after PETA launched an investigation on University of Utah test animals.

Aside from the lab work itself, money is the driving force.

So how much is the life of a dog or cat worth in such transactions?

Utah has an "experimental animals code" that permits shelters to charge researchers a minimum of

$15 per cat
$20 per dog

Animal rights activists in the affected states are concerned, but say it would be difficult to enforce bans, and some facilities aren't even funded by the states, so they aren't subject to certain laws.

The reality is that, with or without the testing, many shelter animals are killed. But, as Martin Stephens, vice president of Animal Research Issues for the Humane Society of the U.S., points out, the animals at least deserve to die without prolonged suffering.

PETA has started a letter writing campaign directed toward ending animal suffering at University of Utah labs. You can also support PETA's work in stopping the abuse and suffering of animals used for testing.

Although it can take a decade or more to change laws, I also hope that concerned individuals in the previously five mentioned states, along with the gray area 30, will rally together to pass legislation that will prohibit animal shelters from providing animals for research. Fifteen states already have such bans:

New Hampshire
New Jersey
New York
Rhode Island
South Carolina
West Virginia

To help ease the overall problem, I also urge you to:
  • Have indoor-only pets.
  • Always keep your dog on a leash when it is out on the street.
  • Microchip your pets. If they become lost and wind up at a shelter, staff there can then easily ID them.
  • Spay and neuter all pets.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Soldier Welcomed Home by Dogs

This touching video is of a soldier being greeted by his dogs after returning home after 14 months in Iraq. WELCOME HOME!

Toledo Dog Warden Has Got to Go!

My dear friend, and fellow rescuer, Barb McGrady with the Society for the Protection of Animals, sent the following to me.

It seems that Tom Skeldon has a long history of killing dogs under the "protection" of his job as Dog Warden in Lucas County, (Toledo, Ohio area).

YES... Mr. Skeldon has got to go. There simply is no reason why good, healthy animals should be euthanized without the opportunity of ever being placed up for adoption first. Euthanization should be the LAST resort, NOT the only option.

The rescues and volunteers have met with a great deal of resistance from this man while trying to get these dogs to safety. His "7%" rate of dogs successfully getting out of his pound is mostly due from owners who are reclaiming a lost pet. Not very good statistics, in my opinion.

It would seem that Mr. Skeldon would rather KILL the animal than allow a handful of volunteers to take pictures, post on the internet, and allow rescues groups the opportunity to pull some of these dogs in hopes of finding them new, loving, forever homes.

Most of the dogs, who were unfortunate enough to find themselves in the Lucas County pound, are the direct result of human irresponsibility and negilence. Once again, folks ... SPAY OR NEUTER YOUR PETS.

All attempts to remove this dog warden have been met with resistance from his cousin who happens to be a Lucas County Commissioner. She continually defends him by saying that "Cousin Tom" is performing a great civic duty in keeping Lucas County citizens safe from stray dogs. WHAT??? Kinda sounds like these two could pass for "Eva and Adolf" in the 21st Century.

Instead of wasting tax payers money on killing innocent little lives, it would seem much more productive to spend that money on some much needed spay and neuter "education" in their community.

The amount of "tax dollars" spent in this country each year to euthanize the overpopulation of unwanted animals is phenomenal.

A little more common sense and responsibility from our pet owners could eliminate a great deal of the tragedy that befalls too many homeless and unwanted pets. Those tax dollars could be spent much more wisely on things that REALLY matter in the "human" communities... you know... the "homeless"... "the sick and elderly," and the list goes on and on.

There are lots of Spay/Neuter programs available to everyone. Some you don't even have to pay for... and we even have the Mobile Vet Hospitals who pull up at your front door. There simply is no longer an excuse for NOT spaying or neutering a pet, and it's the only answer for eliminating the problem of pet overpopulation, plus providing a "good excuse" for the Tom Skeldon's in this country to continue killing innocent lives each and every day.

Most reputable dog wardens will honestly try to save as many lives as possible and will gladly work with volunteers and rescue groups to get these animals to safety. It appears that Mr. Skeldon isn't one of them and he needs to be removed from the position of Dog Warden so that these unfortunate animals can have at least ONE more chance at life... a life that came into being because someone forget to spay or neuter "the dog."

Jo Ann

From Barbara McGrady, S.P.A.

Look into the eyes of each of the dogs held in dank cages on death row at Lucas County's Dog Pound. You'll see horrific amounts of fear, hesitant hope, and confusion. But you'd better hurry: 75% of them will be killed and incinerated as soon as possible. They aren't held for long. It's easier that way. It's much easier to say, "They're just dogs," when you aren't looking directly into their eyes.

Their crimes? Irresponsible human ownership, not being spayed/neutered, or being behaviorally damaged from human abuse and aggression.

Tom Skeldon doesn't seem to have a problem looking into their eyes and then killing them. Perhaps if we looked into his eyes we'd see a deep, dark abyss completely void of compassion. Mr. Skeldon accuses rescue organizations of "cherry-picking" and fighting over which dogs to save as the reason to euthanize thousands of them, instead. That's an unbelievable statement about compassionate volunteers who for years have tried to intervene but have been met with rejection and insult.

What is the motivation of a dog warden who feels compelled to kill so many when their are so many ways in which their lives might be spared?

I think Dr. Albert Schweitzer said it best...

"Ethics, too, are nothing but reverence for life. This is what gives me the fundamental principle of morality, namely, that good consists in maintaining, promoting, and enhancing life, and that destroying, injuring, and limiting life are evil."

The Ohio Coalition of Dog Advocates is actively working with Best Friends Animal Society to help make Lucas County a more humane community. Lucas County has one of the highest kill rates in the state of Ohio and even kills puppies. This despite dog owners paying the highest license fees in the state.

The dog warden's first cousin, Tina Skeldon-Wozniak, has refused to listen to the public outcry calling for a change in leadership at the dog pound. We need help to continue to educate the public about the horrendous conditions at the Lucas County Dog Pound.

The Ohio Coalition of Dog Advocates is seeking donations to pay for printing and distribution costs so that we can circulate the following flyer to residents asking them to contact their local politicians and demand change.

Please donate whatever amount you can
to help OCDA
cover printing and distribution costs!

Click Their Paypal Link Below:

or mail contributions to:

PO Box 4624
Toledo, OH 43610

You can help stop the killing!
Stand Up, Speak Out, Teach Tolerance

Happy Ending for Dogs Caught in Dogfighting Raid

Hundreds of Pit bull dogs rescued in the largest dog fighting raid in U.S. history have been waiting since July to learn their fate. Now dozens are finding new homes.

More than 120 of the dogs are headed to foster homes, thanks to the help of pit bull rescue groups across the country. And another 117 pups are waiting to be shipped out soon.

Read this great article in its entirety on Examiner.com.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Coyote Alert and More Pet Safety Tips

I am a member of the Fur Babies Need Luv Yahoo Group. Bobbie, another group member and fellow rescuer, made a great post this week regarding pet safety... especially in the Ohio Valley.

Please take a few minutes to read her post:

Hello everyone,

It's Fall weather, many are raking leaves, going for walks and just enjoy time with your dogs.

I have received emails of missing dogs recently, some found but unfortunately some never returned home.

Below is critical information that some of you may be aware of and some never heard of what these terms mean but could save the loss of your dogs.

Free to a good home
Typically women put on a loving performance for your dog or cat, promising them a wonderful home, or say they have a pet that needs a companion. They perform a theatrical sales job for your benefit. Never offer your pet for free! If for some reason you are unable to keep your pet, contact an ethical rescue group to take the pet, or, if you have a "no kill shelter," ask for their help. Always check out the rescue group by asking for five referrals and make the follow-up calls. You are determining your pet's life or death. You should feel obligated to find your pet a good home.

These ruthless people will primarily steal domesticated small dogs and cats. The small dogs are used as bait for the fighting dogs in preparing for a fight. Small dogs are no match for a fighting dog like the pit bull. The owners of fighting dogs want it this way because they do not want their fighting pit bull to be injured. Declawed cats are preferred. Cats with claws will cause damage to their fighting dog during a training session.

These are people that steal dogs from pet owners' yards. They usually work in pairs; however, they are fully capable of working independently. Once a "bunch" of dogs have been contained, they are typically sold to research facilities. Research facilities find domesticated dogs the most desirable to use in studies.

Caution: Leaving your dog outside unattended is risky. Your dog could end up in the hands of ruthless people.

Never leave your pet outside unattended. Bunchers and dog fighters will watch your home, taking notes on your habits with your pet. When the timing is right, within seconds, they have taken your pet, and you will never see them again.

I see many invisible fences used to contain pets. This type of fencing may keep your pet contained, but how does it protect your pet from other dogs entering your yard and attacking them? This type of fencing also allows your pet to become an easy snatch for bunchers and dog fighters.

Pets contained in traditional fences are less likely to be attacked by other dogs, however, bunchers and dog fighters do not hesitate to enter your traditional fenced yard to snatch your pet as well.

In Ohio in the Dayton/Cincinnati and Worthington areas, coyotes are surfacing. Coyotes have killed several dogs and one being a Rottweiler. Please be aware Coyotes will attack and kill all breeds. Also, cats.

Monday, November 9, 2009

November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month

From Cesar Millan's Blog:

November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month, and I can't think of a better way to honor a dog's life than to give it a balanced and loving home in its twilight years. I've spoken before about the benefits of adopting a senior dog: they have a much calmer energy, require less strenuous exercise and less often, and are most often already housebroken. They can also be invaluable tools for attempting to balance other dogs in your pack. Nothing beats a senior dog when it comes to showing younger dogs how it's done! Daddy has filled that role for me for many years, and I hope that I can expect many more.

Adopting a senior dog is a noble decision in another important way, too. In many shelters and rescues across the country, senior dogs are the first to be euthanized. Between an adorable, young puppy and a seasoned old veteran, the decision is almost always made in favor of cute faces and tiny, tumbling bodies. Most people don't want to deal with the extra care and commitment that comes with adopting an older dog, despite the many advantages. So by adopting a senior dog, you may be saving a life. That's no small accomplishment!

Read the entire article at:

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

A Pet Oxygen Mask Set for Every Fire Truck Can Save Pets’ Lives


“Bark 10-4™” Campaign Created to Help Fire Departments Across America
Get Pet Oxygen Masks

Annually, an estimated half million pets are affected by fires in the United States and more than 40,000 pets die each year due to smoke inhalation. With the right equipment, police, fire and emergency medical service (EMS) rescuers can often save a pet's life. Losing a pet in a house fire can be a devastating experience for a family member. SurgiVet® Pet Oxygen Masks are effective with dogs, cats and other companion animals, but only if they are on hand at the scene of an emergency.

Smiths Medical, the US manufacturer of the SurgiVet® brand of animal health products, announced today that it has teamed up with Bark Buckle UP® to launch the “Bark 10-4™” campaign. During October, which is National Fire Safety Month, industry leaders and pet safety experts Bark Buckle UP®, and Pet Safety Lady™ Christina Selter are teaming up with Smiths Medical and fire departments nationwide to launch the “Bark 10-4™” campaign to raise awareness of the need for Pet Oxygen Masks.

Currently, most of the more than 30,000 fire departments and EMS offices nationwide have more than one truck, and funds to purchase Pet Oxygen Masks often fall short.

The “Bark 10-4™” Campaign was created with the goal of getting a Pet Oxygen Mask on board every fire truck in the country by encouraging the public to sponsor the purchase of Pet Oxygen Masks for their local fire departments. A $25 sponsorship ensures that one mask can be purchased for a fire department; a $65 sponsorship buys a mask set, which includes a small, medium and large mask.

Sponsorship can be completed at www.Bark10-4.com or from a link at www.surgivet.com. The sponsor designates the specific fire department to receive the gift, which will be delivered with the shipping/handling costs paid by Smiths Medical.

“Vets have used oxygen masks designed especially for animals for years,” according to Lisa Huston, SurgiVet® Product Manager at Smiths Medical. “These masks have found their way into the hands of first responders primarily through word of mouth and the generosity of compassionate pet owners. This program will go a long way toward raising awareness about a product that can save a lot of pets’ lives.”

“The mask only works if it is on the truck,” states Jose M. Torres, Battalion Chief ‘A’ Platoon Santa Monica (California) Fire Department. “Together we can save pets lives.”

About Bark 10-4™
Bark Buckle UP®, is a nationally recognized innovative leader in pet safety that created the program Bark 10-4™ to assist first responders and the public on pet emergency issues and needs. With tours throughout the USA and Canada, and company volunteers in over 20 cities, Bark Buckle UP® leads the charge for educating and promoting awareness for pet safety. For more media information about the Bark 10-4™ campaign,
visit: www.BARK10-4.com or www.BarkBuckleUP.com

About Pet Safety Lady™, Christina Selter
Pet Safety Lady™, Christina Selter works closely with Fire, Police, Coast Guard and EMT personnel who support the pet safety program. She has been featured on television, radio, international auto shows, pet expos, news articles and guest speaking engagements nationwide. For more information about Pet Safety Lady™, visit www.PetSafetyLady.com

About Smiths Medical - SurgiVet®
Smiths Medical designs, manufactures and distributes a line of veterinary-specific medical devices under the SurgiVet® brand. SurgiVet® is a globally recognized brand of products specific to the animal health industry, including a comprehensive range of monitoring devices, anesthesia systems and critical care consumables. Smiths Medical is part of the global technology business Smiths Group.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Saving Ducks

This is a very sweet video of a man trying to help ducklings get out of his pool and back to their anxiously awaiting mommy. Enjoy!

The Pet Shelter Project

Please aide the mission to eradicate the negative stigma associated with Shelter Pets.

Visit www.theshelterpetproject.org for more information.

This light-hearted Public Service Announcement is a joint development by The Ad Council, Maddie's Fund, and The Humane Society.

Monday, October 19, 2009

A Tribute to Molly

October 15, 2009

What can I say about this sweet old Lab who came into my life a little over a year ago? How do you sum up, in a few words, what joy and love this beautiful old girl brought to my home... and to me?

I rescued Molly 15 months ago from the Muskingum County dog pound, where she unfortunately found herself sitting on death row. Molly had been picked up as a stray, wandering down a county road, lost and confused.

Although Molly was deaf, she could still feel vibrations from thunder, fireworks, or loud noises... and since she was found shortly after the 4th of July celebration in 2008, we feel certain that the fireworks must have frightened her and she wandered off from home and became lost. Her owners never bothered to go looking for her.

Molly's hips and knees were in very poor condition, she was somewhere around age 13, but the Vet felt she still had a "little" quality of life left in her, so I made the commitment to give her a safe, loving home until that quality was finally gone.

For the past several weeks, I have watched her steadily go down hill. She could no longer stand, let alone walk. She needed help to do almost everything. Her kidneys were also failing and cataracts had totally covered her once big, beautiful brown eyes.

Today, Al and I made that final trip to the Vet with her. We both sat on the floor and held her while the Vet humanely put her to sleep.

It was very quick and she looked so peaceful. She will be cremated and return home in just a few days.

I tried very hard not to fall in love with this old, feeble dog, as I knew her time with me would be short... but Molly insisted.

I can't help but feel that, in her younger days, Molly must have been the female, Black Lab version of "Marley". She was rotten to the bone and ornery as could be, but you couldn't help but love her. She made you love her whether you wanted to or not.

Even though I still have 11 dogs in my home... it still feels empty in here tonight. Although Molly could not hear my words as I held her and stroked her head, I hope she could feel all the love in my heart. I hope she's at the Rainbow Bridge tonight, healthy and happy... running free with legs and hips that are whole once again.

Goodbye, my sweet, dear Molly... and thank you for bringing so much laughter and joy to my life. I will never forget you.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Marines Enlist Help of ASPCA Animal Behavior Experts

Team of Experts to Assess Behavior of Dogs in Danger of Breed Ban

September 28, 2009

ASPCA Media Contact

NEW YORK— Several Animal Behavior Experts from the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) will be in Parris Island, S.C. from October 6-8 to conduct behavior assessments of over 100 dogs living with their pet parents who could potentially be subject to a breed ban in the Tri-Command housing units of the Marines Corp Recruit Depot.

The assessment, known as ASPCA SAFER (Safety Assessment For Evaluation Rehoming), is a seven-item research-based assessment to help identify the likelihood for aggression in individual dogs. SAFER identifies a dog's comfort level with certain interactions like restraint, touch, reaction to new experiences including movement, sound stimuli, bite inhibition, behavior around food and toys, and arousal level toward novel objects and other dogs.

"Our main goal in this program is to make sure safe dogs and their families are able to stay together," said Dr. Emily Weiss, Senior Director of Shelter Research and Development for the ASPCA. "There is no 'pass' or 'fail' with the SAFER assessment, instead, we are simply aiming to identify behavior issues such as certain types of aggression, which often times can be modified or managed."

Talk of instituting a breed ban began after several incidents involving dog attacks on the base, including one incident in 2008 in which a 3 year-old boy was accidentally killed by a pit bull visiting a family living on base. The Marine Corps previously conducted tests such as the Canine Good Citizen Test and Delta Society Test, which actually evaluate a dog's obedience and manners and do not correlate with aggression. When looking for a behavior assessment that could specifically identify potentially aggressive behavior in dogs, the Marines enlisted the help of the ASPCA.

By using the SAFER assessment, safe dogs will be given the opportunity for a waiver so they can remain on the base until 2012. The ASPCA is opposed to breed bans – laws that ban specific breeds of dogs or unfairly discriminate against responsible dog guardians based solely on their choice of breed. Such laws also fail to achieve the desired goal of stopping illegal activities such as dog fighting, and breeding and/or training dogs to be aggressive. The ASPCA believes that strict enforcement of laws that ban animal fighting, and breeding and/or training animals to fight, is the proper means to address the problem.

"We're very excited about the ASPCA coming to Parris Island," said Army Capt. Jenifer Gustafson, the Officer in Charge of the veterinary clinic on Parris Island. "There was a chance that some pet parents would be forced to give up their dogs or leave housing on the base, so this is a great alternative solution."


Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) was the first humane organization established in the Americas, and today has more than one million supporters throughout North America. A 501 [c] [3] not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. The ASPCA provides local and national leadership in animal-assisted therapy, animal behavior, animal poison control, anti-cruelty, humane education, legislative services, and shelter outreach. The New York City headquarters houses a full-service, accredited animal hospital, adoption center, and mobile clinic outreach program. The Humane Law Enforcement department enforces New York’s animal cruelty laws and is featured on the reality television series “Animal Precinct” on Animal Planet. For more information, please visit www.aspca.org.

County Officials Refuse Public Access to Bite Records


October 10, 2009

Sandusky County Health Department Refuses Access of Public Bite Records to Dog Safety Experts

These reports are public record, meaning that they legally should be available to whomever requests copies. We all want Fremont to remain a safe community. We all want our children to be safe around dogs.

Animal experts can not effectively assist city/county officials in addressing dog bite safety concerns until Sandusky County Department of Health releases these public bite records to Ohio Coalition of Dog Advocates (OCDA) and Citizens Opposing BSL.

"Banning particular breeds is ineffective because it does nothing to address the real issues of responsible ownership," said Barbara McGrady, member of Citizens Opposing BSL. "Banning certain breeds does not address the serious nature of the problem surrounding dog attacks. That is namely people who abuse animals and those who are irresponsible. Both of these activities place the community as a whole at risk."

Jean Keating of OCDA said experts in this field are eager to assist Fremont and Sandusky County Officials in drafting dog legislation that has been proven effective in making communities safer places in which to live but can not do so until the Health Department releases their public bite records.

Citizens Opposing BSL have arranged a meeting to be held this Sunday (October 11th), 2 pm at 521 White Road in Fremont, Ohio. Guest Speaker, Jean Keating, will offer information and answer questions advocating a more effective, breed neutral ordinance.



Citizens Opposing BSL
Barbara McGrady - 419-463-8474

Ohio Coalition of Dog Advocates
Jean Keating - 419-708-8946

Puppy Mill Protesters Shot At in West Hollywood

October 12, 2009
From WeHoNews.com...

West Hollywood, California (Monday, October 12, 2009) - A sniper fired a rifle loaded with two-millimeter brass bullets Saturday during a Santa Monica puppy mill retailer protest, hitting three protesters including West Hollywood community activist Ed Buck.

No one was seriously injured; the victims suffered minor welts and contusions.

Santa Monica police are investigating what they called “assault with a deadly weapon,” a felony.

Companion Animal Protection Society (CAPS) organizers offered a $5,000 reward for the capture and conviction of the perpetrators.

The protesters were at Aquarium & Pet Center, 829 Wilshire Boulevard, Santa Monica, CA, to protest that retailers’ alleged sale of puppy mill dogs, pups that have been bred in inhumane conditions for resale.

Several dozens protesters gathered at the sidewalk in front of the store to shout, wave signs and attempt to warn off clients in the mid-afternoon when they heard gunfire and several of the protesters felt impacts.

The people hit by the bullets included head organizer Carole Raphael Davis, who lived in WeHo for 15 years before departing for LA, Ed Buck, who operates So Cal Golden Retriever Rescue and advocates for slower development in the city and another CAPS protester who Ms. Davis could recall only as Elizabeth.

Mr. Buck said his wound was “a welt on my thigh,” while Ms. Davis credited her sign with slowing the bullet meant for her, saving her injury.

“They must have been aiming at the groin, though,” she said. “The bullet hit my sign right at my groin, and Ed’s and Elizabeth’s injuries were both to the groin.”

SMPD investigators found at least three two-millimeter solid brass bullets customarily fired from a pneumatic rifle, or BB gun.

A rifle of that type may not sound deadly, but a shot in the ear can kill and one in the eye can blind. The incident appalled local officials who heard of it.

“It’s shocking to think that people would try to intimidate people or cause them harm simply because they expressed their views,” said WeHo council member Jeffrey Prang, who has been working with the group to write a municipal ban on the re-selling of any pets except bred or rescued animals in West Hollywood.

For more on that story, click here… WeHo Drawing Up Anti-Puppy Mill Law.

He said, “We need to bring the perpetrators to justice. Acts of gun violence are always out of bounds.”

He said that protests against retailers who sell the animals they obtain from large puppy or kitty mills where mostly un-hygienic and inhumane conditions rule can raise emotions to a keen.

“That means we need to be ever vigilant for those who would settle arguments though that gun violence,” he said.

The protesters claim that store employees stood at the front door laughing and high-fiving after the shots were fired.

The store’s owner, Scott Lee, could not take time to comment on Sunday when WeHo News tried to interview him.

For photos and video, please visit WeHoNews.com.

Fremont Ohio Group Opposes Breed Specific Laws

October 12,2009
From The News-Messenger.com...

FREMONT -- A group of citizens gathered Sunday afternoon to learn more about why breed-specific laws for dogs don't work.

Locals gathered at 521 White Road to voice their concerns about the possibility of pit bulls being regulated by the city.

Jean Keating, of Ohio Coalition of Dog Advocates, Inc., out of Avon Lake said, "We basically try to promote responsible dog ownership in the state, and we're working with legislators on removing the term 'pit bull' from Ohio's definition of a vicious dog." According to the coalition, the laws don't work because they do nothing to address the proven factors that contribute to a dog's likelihood of displaying dangerous behavior such as owner responsibility, abuse and neglect, being inhumanely chained, not being spayed or neutered and dogs roaming at large.

However, Barbara McGrady, of Citizens Opposing Breed Specific Legislation, told those at the meeting that this is what people need to think about, "Banning certain breeds does not address the serious nature of the problem surrounding dog attacks; people who abuse animals and those who are irresponsible. Both of these activities place the community as a whole at risk."

Brent Soper, of Fremont, brought in his pit bull, Roxy, who he has had for nine years.

"(She's) the best dog I've ever owned, she's never left my yard in nine years," he said. When he brought Roxy in, she wagged her tail and made her way to each person as they petted her. The rest of the time she laid calmly by Soper's side. He feels the breed isn't at fault, and that's the owners are at fault for a dog's behavior.

Nichole and Jason Wolf, of Fremont, also brought in their two pit bulls, which also were friendly to those at the meeting.

While Nichole agrees that there are good and bad dogs in every breed, she says if pit bulls are regulated in some way, "it will only hurt the responsible (dog) owners."

But Jane Pollak, of Fremont, feels differently about the breed. Pollak, who was not at the meeting was contacted by telephone Sunday afternoon. She, too agrees that owners are responsible for how a dog behaves.

Last May, two pit bulls had gotten loose from a nearby home and made their way into her garage, where her 15-year-old cocker-mix, Abby, was attacked by the dogs. Abby died four days later from the injuries. Pollak said her main garage door had been closed, but she also has two side doors, and one of them was left open, which is how the two dogs came in.

"I do feel sorry for the dogs because they were put down, because it's not their fault, it's the owners," Pollak said. "I would never trust a pit bull, even though I know they can be nice family dogs."

There is a laws, rules and ordinance meeting of the Fremont City Council at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at city hall to discuss the issue regarding what to do about pit bulls in the city. There will be four guest speakers. At an August council meeting, City Law Director Bob Hart said the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of regulating pit bulls. Hart had also encouraged council members to talk to residents about the issue.

Judy and Bill McKinney, of Fremont, witnessed an attack by a pit bull last month from their home. The McKinneys were also contact by telephone Sunday afternoon.

Judy said she was sitting in her home and had heard a woman screaming "Stop!" "Stop!" When she looked outside, a neighbor's pit bull was attacking a small dog that a family was taking for a walk on a leash.

"I'd never seen an attack before and I never want to see one again," Judy McKinney said, noting she fears for a person or another dog being attacked.

"No one should have to worry when walking their dogs on a leash," she said, noting the owner of the pit bull had gotten rid of the dog after the attack.

Pollak said she appreciates what Hart has asked council to consider.

"I don't want to make dog owners mad, but something needs to be done," she said.

At the meeting, Keating said she is in the process of having the Sandusky County Dog Warden's office gather dog bite records for review.

"We're the only state that has breed specific legislation state-wide," she said.

Vote NO on Ohio's Issue 2

Do you care how farm animals are treated?

If you do then...


Why is The Humane Society of the United States opposing Issue 2?

It's designed to favor large factory farms, not family farmers.

While designed to give the appearance of helping farm animals, Issue 2 is little more than a power grab by Ohio’s agribusiness lobby. The industry-dominated “animal care” council proposed by Issue 2 is really intended to thwart meaningful improvements in how the millions of farm animals in Ohio are treated on large factory farms.

Don't be fooled by those who don't want humane organizations telling them, for instance,
that chickens need to be able to stretch their wings.



On November 3, 2009, Say NO to Big Agribusiness’ Power Grab

If you oppose animal abuse, vote NO on Issue 2 this November.

Why is The Humane Society of the United States opposing Issue 2? While designed to give the appearance of helping farm animals, Issue 2 is little more than a power grab by Ohio’s agribusiness lobby. The industry-dominated “animal care” council proposed by Issue 2 is really intended to thwart meaningful improvements in how the millions of farm animals in Ohio are treated on large factory farms.

Because it’s designed to favor large factory farms, not family farmers, Issue 2 is opposed by the Ohio Farmers Union, the Ohio Environmental Stewardship Alliance, League of Women Voters of Ohio, the Ohio League of Humane Voters, and the Ohio Sierra Club.

The editorial boards of Ohio’s major newspapers—including the Columbus Dispatch, Cleveland Plain Dealer, Akron Beacon Journal, and Dayton Daily Newsall oppose this effort to enshrine the agribusiness lobby’s favored oversight system in the state’s constitution.

Issue 2 is a classic example of bad public policy-making and should be rejected by voters.

Ohio is one of the top veal production states in the nation, with many calves chained by their necks inside crates so small they can’t even turn around for months on end. As well, the state has 170,000 breeding pigs, many of whom are confined in two-foot-wide crates barely larger than their bodies for almost their entire lives. And 28 million egg-laying hens in Ohio are confined in barren, wire battery cages so restrictive the birds can't even spread their wings. This type of extreme confinement is cruel and inhumane, environmentally damaging, and poses severe public health threats. These problems have prompted six U.S. states—and the entire European Union—to criminalize certain kinds of extreme confinement of farm animals.

In the wake of California’s overwhelming passage of the Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act—which banned veal crates, gestation crates and battery cages in California—The Humane Society of the United States sought to engage in cooperative dialogue with the agribusiness community in Ohio. We hoped to be able to continue that dialogue and work cooperatively with the state’s farming leaders—both large and small—to collaboratively advance animal welfare statewide. But rather than discussing potential solutions to these problems, the Ohio Farm Bureau is now trying to hastily grab more power than it already has. The lobby group persuaded the legislature to refer a measure to the November 2009 ballot that would enshrine in the state’s constitution an industry-dominated council to “oversee” the treatment of farm animals. Unfortunately, this council is likely to do little to advance farm animal welfare. It is little more than a handout to Big Agribusiness interests in the state, seeking to codify the abusive practices currently being used in the state constitution.

Don’t let Big Ag get away with this power grab: Vote NO on Issue 2.

Barbara McGrady
P.O. Box 1047
Fremont, Ohio 43420

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Great Effort by Pilots to Save Shelter Dogs

This is a great follow up on the Pilots N Paws 5000 mission where pilots donated their time to transport 5,000 shelter dogs from Sept. 12 -20.

Click below to watch the ABC News video:

Here in This House

Here in this house...........

I will never know the loneliness I hear in the barks of the other dogs 'out there'.
I can sleep soundly, assured that when I wake my world will not have changed.
I will never know hunger, or the fear of not knowing if I'll eat.
I will not shiver in the cold, or grow weary from the heat.
I will feel the sun's heat, and the rain's coolness,
and be allowed to smell all that can reach my nose.
My fur will shine, and never be dirty or matted.
Here in this house...

There will be an effort to communicate with me on my level.
I will be talked to and, even if I don't understand,
I can enjoy the warmth of the words.
I will be given a name so that I may know who I am among many.
My name will be used in joy, and I will love the sound of it!
Here in this house...

I will never be a substitute for anything I am not.
I will never be used to improve peoples' images of themselves.
I will be loved because I am who I am, not someone's idea of who I should be.
I will never suffer for someone's anger, impatience, or stupidity.
I will be taught all the things I need to know to be loved by all.
If I do not learn my lessons well, they will look to my teacher for blame.
Here in this house...

I can trust arms that hold, hands that touch...
knowing that, no matter what they do, they do it for the good of me.
If I am ill, I will be doctored.
If scared, I will be calmed.
If sad, I will be cheered.
No matter what I look like, I will be considered beautiful and thought to be of value.
I will never be cast out because I am too old, too ill, too unruly, or not cute enough.
My life is a responsibility, and not an afterthought.
I will learn that humans can almost, sometimes, be as kind and as fair as dogs.

Here in this house...
I will belong.
I will be home.

~Author Unknown

Cat Drinking from Faucet

This is a hilarious YouTube video of a cat who LOVES water!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Amazing Wildlife Video

This is a very sweet video. Enjoy!

Lawless Killer Guns Down Famed Bear

I usually do not solicit donations, for myself or for other organizations. However, I truly feel that this is a cause that could certainly use some funding.

Poaching is a huge problem in other countries. We as Americans cannot allow this to happen in our country. It is our responsibility to protect our endangered spices.

Poaching is illegal and the people responsible should be caught and made to stand accountable for their ruthless actions.

Offering "Reward Money" often brings these criminals to justice more quickly.

I leave this to your discretion and your conscious. Even a "buck" would help bring justice for Maximus as well as other endangered animals that are ruthlessly hunted down and killed for whatever reason.

Jo Ann

From Defenders of Wildlife...

Maximus the grizzly bear was "a big, beautiful, wild bear," according to grizzly specialist Mike Madel. "He kept to himself, stayed out of trouble.”But he was gunned down in the prime of his life. Left to rot in a Montana hayfield, his badly decomposed body was discovered a month after being ruthlessly shot. His killer is still at large.

With your compassionate donation of $25, $50, $100 or another amount, you can help bring lawless wildlife killers to justice and respond quickly to other wildlife emergencies.

We’ve quickly moved to offer a reward to bring Maximus’s killer to justice. But sadly, this bear's story is not unique. Poachers have recently ended the lives of some of our most endangered animals including Florida panthers, southwest gray wolves and California condors. In Idaho, a female wolf pup was illegally gunned down from a roadway. And a thriving black market in bear gallbladders and other parts is fueling a slaughter of bears across the nation.

Help us post rewards for poachers and alert the public as we aid law enforcement in the capture of these heartless people. Please make a donation today.

Update from Elite Animals

Below is an update from Elite Animals of West Hollywood, CA. These folks have done an awesome job in the fight against puppy mills.


Yesterday, our investigator in the South ( one of the undercover guys who does mill investigations for us) called Elite for me to order a dog. There is no way they could have known he was affiliated with us. He recounted:

"A Russian woman answered me, 'We don't have any dogs.' When I asked if I could order one and have him held until we get to L.A., she answered, 'We probably aren't going to be doing that anymore. Maybe going to do another business."

Folks, I am cautiously optimistic when I tell you I think we've done it. I honestly believe that though there has been no hard evidence that they are done, all signs point to an irreversible erosion of their business. EVEN if their business is loan sharking or some other illegal business, this campaign is a real problem for them. I drive by pretty much every day, sometimes twice and they're EMPTY. It's dark. No dogs, no cats. Same unsold dust covered merchandise on the shelf. Same sad woman, holding her head down. No owners. Dead. The most important thing to note is that NO PUPPY MILL DOGS have been sold for months in WEHO because of us.

Take a bow. Come for what may be the last protest there. We will discuss our next moves WEST to Santa Monica. I will explain in person what is going on there.

I was reading late last night about the Southern bus boycott during the civil rights movement. It took them a year, white folks, black folks together, doing car pools to get to work and leaving those buses empty...a YEAR. After a year, the bus company reversed its unfair and racist position, finally allowing black folks to SIT DOWN! All the while, creepy, racist white folks were taking the bus and acting like the boycott would never work and thinking that they were right to take all the seats, treating African Americans like second class citizens. Those people are the same kind of people who BUY PM dogs. And the owners of the bus company are the same kind of people who own the stores and the mills. They were WRONG and we are right. Today, the world is a different place, not perfect, but certainly more just because of the protesters. You are the protesters. You are standing up for justice and do not give up.

The road is long and consumers are callous. But we will win at every store in Los Angeles.

Please come and support our movement. We will be there from 1-3 on Saturday. Hold a sign, hold your head high. They are pretty much defeated. I think we'll leave them ATTENDED by undercovers for a while to see what develops after this week.

JOIN US, JOIN your friends. SAT 1-3

Carole Raphaelle Davis

The Orangutan and the Hound

When Surya the orangutan meets a hound dog by the river, the two carry on like long lost friends.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Fight for Tax Break for Pet Care Costs

From A.S.P.C.A.

Dear Animal Advocates,

Introduced by Rep. Thaddeus McCotter, H.R. 3501—known as the Humanity and Pets Partnered Through the Years (“HAPPY”) Act—is a federal bill that would reward responsible pet parents by allowing them to keep more money in their pockets come tax time.

We all want to give our animal companions the best care we possibly can, but it seems that pet care costs are always on the rise—and these days, it’s harder than ever to stretch the family budget. That’s why the ASPCA supports H.R. 3501, which would amend U.S. tax code to allow qualifying pet care expenses, including veterinary care, to be tax-deductible. This means that when you prepare your income taxes, money you spent on pet care that year would count as non-taxable income—and you can deduct up to $3,500 per year! Please help us support the HAPPY Act, H.R. 3501.

What You Can Do
Visit the ASPCA Advocacy Center online to send an email to your U.S. representative and urge him or her to support and cosponsor the HAPPY Act, H.R. 3501.

Thank you for supporting this bill and being part of our team!

Fremont Council Members Eager for Input

A follow-up to Town Hall Meeting on Pit Bull Ban in Fremont, OH...

The City of Fremont has either blocked all incoming email or there is a problem with their server. PLEASE RESEND YOUR THOUGHTS TO COUNCIL MEMBERS' PERSONAL EMAIL ADDRESSES BELOW. City Council Members are eager to hear from you regarding the possibility of banning pit bulls in Fremont.

I called council members at their homes and have obtained the following personal email addresses of the council members who said that they are certainly open to your input. Please send an email voicing your opinon regarding pit bulls and whether or not they should be singled out. PLEASE REMEMBER TO BE POLITE and FACTUAL. A special thanks to the following council members for their willingness to hear all sides on this issue. Objectivity is imperitive when making a decision that could force many households in Fremont to give up loving pets that are considered members of their families.

ALSO: Read Pit Bull Expert and Attorney's Response Below

Email addresses in spam-bot protection form. Please replace [at] with @ and remove extra spaces.

littlegiantspa [at] yahoo.com

JIM MELLE (Democrat)
jimmelle [at] hotmail.com

DON NALLEY (Democrat)
1st Ward Councilman
nalley1stward [at] aol.com

RICK ROOT (Republican)
Unable to Contact

2nd Ward Councilwoman
pwags43 [at] yahoo.com

JIM WEAVER (Democrat)
Unable to Contact

MIKE KOEBEL (Republican)
No email address available
830 Morrison St.
Fremont, OH 43420

Mayor Overmyer has referred all calls to Law Director, Bob Hart

Call Bob Hart's Office:
Fremont, Ohio Law Director/ Prosecutor

City Prosecutor/Law Director Bob Hart
Attacks the Pit Bull Issue...

Fremont Law Director Hart said: "...if we can just focus on pit bulls now and decide how far the city wants to go in regulating them, anywhere from a total ban to requiring how they are kenneled and locked up. So I think that's kind of where we're at."

Attorney Terry Lodge requested that this response follow Hart's above statement:

The question must be asked, why has a possible ban of pit bulls become of a sudden, burning issue in Fremont? There've been no sensational dog attack or dog bite cases for a very long time in Fremont or Sandusky County; the supposed threat from pit bulls has not dominated local conversations in the media; indeed, the General Assembly has long ago put into place requirements for securing pit bulls on and off the owner's premises - provisions on the books which can be enforced with fines or even jailing when charges are brought by the County Dog Warden or any police officer. There is, however, an economic recession which has affected the City and Northwestern Ohio, and a local ordinance modeled after the state law will increase the City's income from fines, Attorney Lodge states.

The Fremont City Law Director misunderstands Ohio law when he suggests that pit bulls can be completely banned. That is not what the Ohio Supreme Court said in the Toledo v. Tellings case. The Supreme Court said that the General Assembly can require pit bulls to be contained inside fences on their owners' property and that they must wear a muzzle when out in public. There is no pit bull "crisis" in Fremont and no legally-based reason for an out-and-out ban of pit bulls. I predict that a complete ban on pit bulls in Fremont will lose in the courts and in effect makes a revenue issue out of a loving pet.

The Supreme Court decision only interprets the statute, incidentally. The STATE law already requires muzzling, special insurance, fencing. The local ordinance - if it doesn't try to ban pits but only duplicates the interpretation and statute - is redundant.

Towns often pass duplicate local ordinances so they can bring charges under the local law and so collect 100% of the fine instead of having to split it with the state government.

Since the general assembly has set the outer limit for regulation of pits, I predict the courts will strike down an out and out ban. It'll cost a lot of money to the City so why are they posturing? I think the answer is obvious.

Lodge continues, "Is the pit bull issue a "red herring" way of increasing the City's revenue stream? Is increasing the cruel and unnecessary extermination of a specific breed of dog truly a required must for more money in public coffers?"

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Reynoldsburg Family Appeals to Council to Save Pit Bull

Two pet owners pleaded with Reynoldsburg City Council Monday, Sept. 14 not to let police take a "family member" from their residence on Brice Road.

That family member is 9-year-old Mercedes, a Staffordshire Bull Terrier, considered a pit bull breed and one that is illegal under Reynoldsburg's law against harboring viscous or dangerous dogs."It's totally absurd that every breed on this hit list is targeted," said Larry Wiles, father of the dog's owner, Sam Wiles.

Reynoldsburg's law prevents residents from owning or keeping a vicious dog, defined as one that has caused serious injury or killed a person or other animal, trained to fight or belongs to a pit bull breed.

As part of the law, the city can seize the dog and humanely destroy it.

After another dog scratched a resident in their block on Brice Road, Reynoldsburg officials sent a letter to the Wiles, noting that they had become aware of their owning a Staffordshire Bull Terrier and the consequences, which include fines and possible seizure of the animal.

Click HERE to read the complete story on ColumbusLocalNews.com.

Town Hall Meeting on Pit Bull Ban in Fremont, OH

An URGENT appeal from Barbara McGrady of S.P.A....
Please email / call the following politicians to help prevent a Pit Bull ban in Fremont, Ohio. Politely express your opinon.

Fremont Law Director Hart said: "...if we can just focus on Pit Bulls now and decide how far the city wants to go in regulating them, anywhere from a total ban to requiring how they are kenneled and locked up. So I think that's kind of where we're at."

Town Meeting will be held
October 15th at City Hall, 6:30 pm


Mayor Overmyer has referred all calls to Law Director, Bob Hart...

Call Bob Hart's Office:
Fremont, Ohio Law Director/ Prosecutor

City Council Members want to know how you feel...

Mike Koebel
419-334-4231 home, 419-332-5300 work

Email addresses in spam-bot protection form. Please replace [at] with @ and remove extra spaces.

Jim Melle
jmelle [at] fremontohio.org

Larry Jackson
ljackson [at] fremontohio.org

O. Duane Simmons
odsimmons [at] fremontohio.org

Rick Root
rroot [at] fremontohio.org

Jim Weaver
jweaver [at] fremontohio.org

Karen Wagner
pwags43 [at] yahoo.com

Don Nalley
nalley1stward [at] aol.com

Quotes by Bob Hart, County Law Director:
"...When I get the cases in when a dog has bitten somebody and you want to throw up because of the damage because of the mutilation, yeah, pit bulls. Other dogs may bite but they don't rip and tear and kill like pit bulls do."

"My personal feeling is that pit bulls don't belong in municipalities around kids and other companion animals. That's my personal opinion. But I'd like council to start getting a feel for where they'd like to be with that," FREMONT CITY PROSECUTOR BOB HART SAID.

A laws, rules and ordinance committee meeting is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Oct. 15 at city hall to discuss issues with pit bulls. At an August council meeting, City Law Director Bob Hart said the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of regulating pit bulls. Hart had also encouraged council members to talk to residents about the issue.

Transcript of September 3 Council Meeting:
Fremont City Law Director Bob Hart said: "The Supreme Court has ruled favorably for a city's ability to regulate pit bulls. Despite what our Court of Appeals had ruled - the Supreme Court has issued a decision that pretty much supports a city's ability to regulate bit bulls.

Toledo had an ordinance that actually only allowed one household to own one pit bull and they regulated the number of pit bulls and the Supreme Court has upheld that saying that there is a rational relationship and a legitimate interest for the city to do that for safety reasons.

The other issue that we talked about when we talked was about dangerous and vicious dogs and the city's ability to regulate the animals that have a propensity or that have a history of causing harm or acting in a menacing fashion. That issue right now in my mind is still awful murky. The Supreme Court just issued another decision late last month that I read and quite honestly it makes the issue muddier. So what I suggest to council is to start thinking amongst yourselves, start talking to some people to find out how far the city wants to go in regulating pit bulls.

And I think maybe this fall if the city can just focus on the pit bull issue and get that issue resolved maybe next spring or something the other areas might have a little more clarity where I think that I can give council a little bit more, a little better advice on what we can and can not do as far as other vicious dogs.

But if we can just focus on pit bulls now and decide how far the city wants to go in regulating them anywhere from a total ban to requiring how they are kenneled and locked up. So I think that's kind of where we're at.

The way the state stature was it said the definition of a vicious dog included a dog that either caused harm to a person or serious harm to another animal or was a pit bull, okay? Just because of the breed... Breed specific. If it was a pit bull and if the dog warden determined it was a pit bull it was considered a vicious dog.

Our Sixth District Court of Appeals said, No, wait a minute, you can't do that, you can't say that just because it's a pit bull means it's vicious." Even though the Toledo Municipal Court had expert after expert after expert testify that they (pit bulls) were vicious and the defendant in that case brought in his own expert saying that they weren't vicious the Toledo Municipal Court ruled that they were vicious.

Jean Keating of the Ohio Coalition of Dog Advocates asked that I insert the following regarding Hart's quote above. Ms. Keating states, "The experts Toledo called in did not testify that pit bulls are vicious. I have the transcripts from the hearing. They testified that pits are used to guard drugs in inner city areas and thus police encounter them more frequently. Even Karla Hamlin, Lucas County Pound Manager, stated that pit bulls are no different than other dogs when treated properly."

Hart's council presentation continues, "Our Court of Appeals ruled that they weren't vicious. Our Supreme Court now went back to yes Toledo, you can do it. Okay? So what I'd like council to do is we want to address the whole situation but right now the only thing I think we can do with sufficient clarity is attack the pit bull issue. So I'd like council to think about where we'd like to start with that."

My personal feeling is that pit bulls don't belong in municipalities around kids and other companion animals. That's my personal opinion. But I'd like council to start getting a feel for where they'd like to be with that.

Councilman Nalley asked Hart, "Mr. Hart, when you get calls or complaints regarding dogs is it very often that you're getting those complaints for breeds other than the pit bull... are you getting a variety or mostly pit bulls?

Hart responded, "That would be a better question for the dog warden Gina Habeisen to be asked. (Fred Harris is actually the dog warden, Gina is Deputy Dog Warden)."

"Maybe we can get her to shed some light on her experience with pit bulls but as far as when I get the cases in when a dog has bitten somebody and you want to throw up because of the damage because of the mutilation yeah, pit bulls. Other dogs may bite but they don't rip and tear and kill like pit bulls do."

Barbara McGrady, founder and president of S.P.A., thinks it is important to remove raw emotion and look at treatment of Fremont's pit bulls in a factual, logical, rational way. How many people have been attacked in the city of Fremont by pit bulls? How many have been attacked by all other breeds? How may people in the city of Fremont have been killed by pit bulls? How many have been killed by other dog attacks?

If Fremont's pit bulls are not causing more problems than any of the other breeds, why would it be necessary to discuss banning this breed, which is obviously just being said as a scare tactic to set up acceptance of the alternative measures of more secure enforcement which would generate income from fines.

It is more logical and would probably be more lucrative to the city if the dog warden and prosecutor announced a no-exceptions policy of fining owners the maximum when there are citations for a dog running loose, instead of intruding on the decision of what breed of dog a person chooses as a pet.

The Council may also be considering setting up a panel for dog bite reviews to decide whether a dog is "vicious" according to law. While there is some merit to such an idea, the details must be fully disclosed to the public so it can be further analyzed and discussed, McGrady said.

The Rescuer's Answering Machine

Hello: You have reached 123-4567, Tender Hearts Rescue. Due to the high volume of calls we have been receiving, please listen closely to the following options and choose the one that best describes you or your situation:

Press 1 if you have a 10-year-old dog and your 15-year-old son has suddenly become allergic and you need to find the dog a new home right away.

Press 2 if you are moving today and need to immediately place your 150 pound, 8-year-old dog.

Press 3 if you have three dogs, had a baby and want to get rid of your dogs because you are the only person in the world to have a baby and dogs at the same time.

Press 4 if you just got a brand new puppy and your old dog is having problems adjusting so you want to get rid of the old one right away.

Press 5 if your little puppy has grown up and is no longer small and cute and you want to trade it in for a new model.

Press 6 if you want an unpaid volunteer to come to your home TODAY and pick up the dog you no longer want.

Press 7 if you have been feeding and caring for a "stray" for the last three years, are moving and suddenly determine it's not your dog.

Press 8 if your dog is sick and needs a vet but you need the money for your vacation.

Press 9 if you are elderly and want to adopt a cute puppy who is not active and is going to outlive you.

Press 10 if your relative has died and you don't want to care for their elderly dog because it doesn't fit your lifestyle.

Press 14 if you are calling at 6 a.m. to make sure you wake me up before I have to go to work so you can drop a dog off on your way to work.

Press 15 to leave us an anonymous garbled message, letting us know you have left a dog in our yard in the middle of January, which is in fact, better than just leaving the dog with no message.

Press 16 if you are going to get angry because we are not going to take your dog that you have had for fifteen years, because it is not our responsibility.

Press 17 if you are going to threaten to take your ten year old dog to be euthanized because I won't take it.

Press 18 if you're going to get angry because the volunteers had the audacity to go on vacation and leave the dogs in care of a trusted volunteer who is not authorized to take your personal pet.

Press 19 if you want one from an abundance of our PERFECTLY trained, housebroken, kid and cat friendly purebred dogs.

Press 20 if you want us to take your dog that has a slight aggression problem, i.e. has only bitten a few people and killed your neighbor's cats.

Press 21 if you have already called once and been told we don't take personal surrenders but thought you would get a different person this time with a different answer.

Press 22 if you want us to use space that would go to a stray to board your personal dog while you are on vacation, free of charge, of course.

Press 23 if it is Christmas Eve or Easter morning and you want me to deliver an eight week old puppy to your house by 6:30 am before your kids wake up.

Press 24 if you have bought your children a duckling, chick or baby bunny for Easter and it is now Christmas and no longer cute.

Press 25 if you want us to take your female dog who has already had ten litters, but we can't spay her because she is pregnant again and it is against your religion.

Press 26 if you're lying to make one of our younger volunteers feel bad and take your personal pet off your hands.

Press 27 if your cat is biting and not using the litter box because it is de-clawed, but are not willing to accept the responsibility that the cat's behavior is altered because of your nice furniture.

Press 28 if your two year old male dog is marking all over your house but you just haven't gotten around to having him neutered.

Press 29 if you previously had an outdoor only dog and are calling because she is suddenly pregnant.

Press 30 if you have done "everything" to housebreak your dog and have had no success but you don't want to crate the dog because it is cruel.

Press 31 if you didn't listen to the message asking for an evening phone number and you left your work number when all volunteers are also working and you are angry because no one called you back.

Press 32 if you need a puppy immediately and cannot wait because today is your daughter's birthday and you forgot when she was born.

Press 33 if your dog's coat doesn't match your new furniture and you need a different color or breed.

Press 34 if your new love doesn't like your dog and you are too stupid to get rid of the new friend (who will dump you in the next month anyway) instead of the dog.

Press 35 if you went through all these 'options' and didn't hear enough. This press will connect you to the sounds of tears being shed by one of our volunteers who is holding a discarded old dog while the vet mercifully frees him from the grief of missing his family.

Save a life by adopting a pet through your local animal shelter or rescue - do not go to PETLAND and other pet stores where most BUY their animals from PUPPY MILLS to turn around and sell for HUGE profits . Please pass the word to people that you meet how important it is to spay/neuter their pets!

Visit www.petfinder.com to see all the animals in need. National statistics: Only 1 out of 10 dogs born ever get a home. Only 1 out of 12 cats born ever find a home. 800 dogs & cats are KILLED each HOUR in the U.S, because there are not enough homes for them. Saving one animal may not change the world, but, it will surely change the world for that one animal. Thank you!

~ Author Unknown

Hungry Mouse is Fearless

This beautiful story was emailed to me from a friend. I hope you enjoy it!

This mouse danced with death when it tucked into the lunch of a hungry leopard.

Seemingly unaware of the beautiful and powerful beast towering over it, the mischievous rodent grabbed at scraps of meat thrown into the African Leopard's enclosure.

But instead of pouncing on the tiny intruder, the 12-year-old leopard, Sheena, appeared to be afraid of the daring mouse and kept her distance. At one stage she tried to nudge the mouse away with her nose, but the determined little chap carried on chewing away until he was full.

The extraordinary scene was captured by photography student Casey Gutteridge at the Santago Rare Leopard Project in Hertfordshire.

The 19-year-old from Potters Bar, Hertfordshire, who was photographing the leopard for a course project was astounded by the mouse's behavior. He said, "I have no idea where the mouse came from, he just appeared in the enclosure after the keeper had dropped in the meat for the leopard."

He didn't take any notice of the leopard, just went straight over to the meat and started feeding himself.

But the leopard was pretty surprised; she bent down and sniffed the mouse and flinched a bit like she was scared. In the meantime, the mouse just carried on eating like nothing had happened."

Even a gentle shove does not deter the little creature from getting his fill.

It was amazing, even the keeper who had thrown the meat into the enclosure was shocked.

He said he'd never seen anything like it before. Project owner Jackie James added: "It was so funny to see. Sheena batted the mouse a couple of times to try to get it away from her food. But the determined little thing took no notice and just carried on." Sheena was brought in to the Santago Rare Leopard Project from a UK zoo when she was just four months old. She is one of 14 big cats in the private collection started by Jackie's late husband, Peter, in 1989.

The African Leopard can be found in the continent's forests, grasslands, savannas, and rainforests.

So, the mouse continued to eat the leopard's lunch... oblivious to the gentle giant's presence, patience and tolerance of her bite-sized, uninvited, curious little guest!