Friday, March 30, 2012

Why should you stand up for animals?

Being an animal rights activist is being a human rights activist.
                Research has shown that abusive individuals will usually have a history of animal abuse before they move on to abusing other people.

       People who abuse neglect and show ignorance towards the individuality of animals will be abusive, neglectful towards the humans in their lives. Those who support breed specific legislation are those who use their fear and misunderstanding to dictate law. Behind every breed specific law there's a prejudicial legislature

      Standing beside every abused animal is a caring brave human who will treat fellow beings with loyalty and respect regardless of race social status or gender.  These individuals are passionate about what they believe in.  This passion can sometimes be misunderstood and disregarded as illogical since to some "its just a dog, just an animal".  What we fail to see is that if we can't show compassion towards creatures that are "just" not human what will motivate us to help the people around us that can't help themselves.

   When we teach others to show respect to all life we begin the process of teaching them to care for all those around them regardless of race, origin, religion, even species.  If we teach our children to respect the right animals have to live their  life in dignity and out of harm we give them the tools to grow up to respect the people they encounter. 

Teach kindness, equality compassion towards all.

  • Pit bulls are not vicious no animal is out to be an evil man killer. Attacks do occur but they are not limited to this breed any dog any animal under bad circumstances can lash out.  Educate yourself and your children to know how to act around animals you don't know and how to respect the pets in our lives to always remember they are not babies they are and always will be animals.
  • Animals from pet stores come from puppy mills, mass breeders and directly result in the death of hundreds of animals in shelters everyday.
  • "free to a good home" does not exist taking in an animal requires care and commitment in the monetary sense as well as emotional.
  • Mutts are just as wonderful as "pedigree" purebreds, just like people are wonderful regardless of race.
  • Adopting, spaying and neutering save lives.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Communicating efficiently for the sake of animal rescue .

There's as difference between how we feel and how we should communicate.
We are passionate in our defense of animals and have a soft spot for pitbulls. Pitbulls find themselves in the crossfire of a heated debate which boils down to being between those who feel they can chose what's safe for everyone and those who wish to choose for themselves. When our beloved Pits are attacked we want to react with the full force of our passion and often end up fueling the growing dislike of "animal people" . One news station called pit bull advocates "watchdogs".

When someone attacks our way of life or something close to our hearts we must not just react we Must act. A reaction is an action controlled by an original act, thus giving the offensive comment or opinion originating power. But an action, stands on its own and comes with new force and fresh power. If we merely react we do so with emotions that are a response to a statement that offends and upsets us so our comments might be muddled by opinion and personal defense which can end up sounding childish and inappropriate .

If we take a moment and remember what we stand for we can produce a comment that is educated and well written so as to show we are not crazy cat people and dog people but rather individuals who have seen the horrors animals face in shelters. People who understand that the sensationalism of isolated events involving pitbulls and large dogs results in a twisting of facts and the death of thousands.

That's the point we need to aim to make not who's right and how stupid the other side is because it allows them to dismiss our opinion entirely. Present you point educate the opposing person AND Arm yourself with understanding towards those that don't understand you.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Choosing healthy dog treats

   Walk into your local grocery store, or sadly even your local pet supply store and pick up a bag of Pup-peroni dog treats.   Read off the first five ingredients.  You might be surprised to see what is listed is not really a substantial nutritional meat product let alone anything your dog would find yummy. 

     In case you don't have a bag of these treats handy allow me to list out the ingredients as provided on their own website. 
Original Bacon Flavor Pup-Peroni :
  • Beef
  • Meat by-products
  • Soy grits
  • Sugar
  • Liver
    Well it can't be so bad if beef is the first item and liver is on there.  Meat by-products can't be so bad, right? It would be possible to breathe easy if this were where you would stop asking questions.  Unfortunately beef and liver are quite vague and well meat by-products are not a good sign.  The guidelines for what is acceptable to be put into your pets food are sadly far behind appropriate standards.  That beef and liver could come from meat that was not up to standards for human consumption for a list of reasons from disease to pesticides.  Yet pet food companies can still purchase it and list it as ingredients in your dogs food. 

      What is the difference between by products and the beef or liver listed? By-products are by definition the "non-rendered, clean parts of slaughtered mammals other than the meat".  So it can be the spleen, lungs, brains, any organ that does not include horns, beaks, feathers, hair.  The meat that does make it in is anything that is left after the animal has been stripped of anything that can be considered human grade and safe for human consumption. 

So by definition it may still not sound so scary but the standards that the pet food industry is held to are vague and weak so how the company goes about getting these meats, by-products and by-product meals can be unclear and truly left to the companies judgment.  The truth is that for the most part anything that is a by-products or by-product meal can be anywhere on the scale from slightly not human safe to basic garbage that is left over from the meat processing.

Sugar can't really be digested by dogs and can give them diarrhea.  They can't digest grains, glutens and soy can cause allergies. 

  Many of these big brand name treats are just grain and meat products that are more like garbage.  Completely artificial and something that your dog would not even look at if it weren't for that mystery ingredient that makes it smell irresistible.  That would be rendered restaurant oil.  The kind that sits out and is set to be thrown out when it is no longer safe for cooking with.  Pet food industries get their hands on this and put it on your pets treats so that it smells like food to them. 

   This all may not kill your dog but it won't make his life any better.  Your pet depends on YOU to make the right decision and take care of them. 

I've said it before and I will repeat it now read the label.  Meat has to be somewhere on the top 5 ingredients and if you see by products, by-product meal, bone meal just put it back on the shelf and walk away it's not good food.  Grains should not be on the top ingredients (actually shouldn't be an ingredient at all ) And remember Soy is digestible but it can cause food allergies. 

What is in Milk bone Original Biscuits?
Top first ingredients according to their own website
  • Wheat Flour
  • Wheat Bran
  • Meat and bone meal
  • Milk
  • Wheat germ
  • Beef fat
  • Salt
What is in Beggin' Strips Bacon Flavor
Top first ingredients according to their website

  • Ground wheat
  • Corn Gluten meal
  • Wheat Flour
  • Ground Yellow corn
  • Water
  • Sugar
  • Soybean meal

These just don't make the grade in my book.  There is however a wave of new treats that are created with your pets health in mind.  Independent small businesses that are trying to combat big corporations for the chance to feed your dog and their secret weapon is safe, tasty treats made out of real ingredients.  My personal favorite right now is Bocce's Bakery.  It is independent owned and are treats that are gluten free and its ingredients are all human grade.  

Bocce's Bakery: The ELVIS All Natural and Organic Dog Biscuits (just one of the available flavors)

  • Organic oat flour, locally milled wheat free flours
  • Organic bananas
  • All natural peanut butter no salt, no sugar added
  • nitrate-free, grass fed lean turkey bacon
  • non fat yogurt
That's it! No chemicals, pesticides, preservatives, weird ingredients that can barely be pronounced no by products.  Organic and grown locally ingredients and treats are oven baked in NYC.  This company takes pride in their products and produces small batches at a time so your products are always fresh.  Their founder was inspired by her dog Bocce and her desire to give her dog healthy treats that didn't have undesirable ingredients.  You can get more information from their website,

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Creating more successful Fosters

    It is surprising how many people have never heard of fostering an animal. It's even more amazing how little information there actually is on the topic. There seems to be a gap between the rescue community and those who want to help. Its a communication gap.

   Over and over there are people who want to help but just don't know how. Rescues are great at creating a strong community of supporters out of their close volunteers, but repeatedly rely on the same sources of support and become,accidently, closed groups.

   With the developing of social networks this is changing but it's changing too slowly and has not spilled out into the mainstream.

   One of the most awesome sources of information has come from a great rescue activist who I have the pleasure of calling friend. She's become my rosetta stone of the rescue world. And I turn to her every time I want information on a rescue topic. Sandy Unger has experience working with rescues and is part of the revolution of rescue attitude. She spreads the word wide and far to anyone who listens. Branches out to new groups and looks for fresh people to spread the knowledge she has accrued over the years. She was great at recommending some awesome groups who look for fosters and list great foster FAQS on their sites. Sandy and those in rescue like her are a breath of fresh air in a community that desperately needs to gain new support in order to help animals everyday.

   Another little gem I have found is Foster Dogs NYC. Founded in 2009 by Sarah O. after being inspired through her own foster experience. She has also gone on to create which helps prospective adopters find the perfect match. Sarah and her team understood that there was a need in both these areas. A need to pair the right people with the right pet, a need for one friendly place where people could get information on how to help. is an excellent database of animals needing homes but the concept presented by and go even further. offers a great FAQS section for the prospective foster parent. It lists answers on questions like who will cover costs, how long will they be responsible for the pet and what impact does fostering really have on the pets life.

   Fostering can be a great experience once you get over the scary first step of making the decision to open your home to a pet who will eventually call some place else home. The greatest danger you stand is of losing your heart to a furry friend and becoming a foster failure. If you become a foster failure you will suffer the terrible fate of keeping this companion and possibly being licked to death.

Check out the links below and hopefully you will find the answers you need to taking the plunge and saving a life. Because that's exactly what fostering does, saves a life.

Great resources:

Awesome Rescues looking for foster :
All these rescues have facebook pages you can reach out and give them a "like"

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Welcoming the New Year

As classic as the New Year sunglasses, is the new year resolutions.
The list we like to make every January of all the things we plan on accomplishing during this new year.

We've all got them, lose more weight, get better job, finally clean out that closet. From an animal lover point of view the new year brings with it a whole new world of possibilities.

The great thing is that your pet can be the perfect aid in accomplishing some of your resolutions this year. It wont require any extra gear or expensive memberships.

If your resolution is to lose weight, than grab a leash and Fido and walk your way thin. Giving your pup a good wallk helps strengthen your bond and helps slim your waist line. Depending on your pets athleticism you should aim for a good half hour walk at least twice a day aside from your regular walks. Remember your pet will usually aim to please you and will go as far as you push them without complaining so be careful not to over exert them. There are many dogs who accompany their humans on long and exciting trails and mountain hikes, so who knows where your new adventures will lead you.

The extra exercise will lower your blood pressure and help you check the weight loss resolution of your list.

Have you decided that this is the year where you will simplify your life and achieve happiness? Well once again your lovable pet is here to save the year. Take a moment to pet your furry friend for a few uninterrupted minutes and watch as you feel more relaxed and balanced. Research has shown that petting a pet will lower your blood pressure. And that gratefull look froom your pet for the extra attention will surely grant you immediate happiness.

Perhaps this year you plan to meet that special someone, well walk away from the dating sites and take a stroll with your pooch. People with pets tend to be more social and outgoing. You always have a conversation topic when you consider all the cooky things your dog or cat does. There are a lot of social groups out there directed soley at animal lovers and pet parents, taking part in one of these groups could lead to meeting "the one", at the very least you will meet a lot of awesome people along the way.

The list goes on and on and for every resolution that you make you have the perfect partner to help in your pet.

Now if you find your self with out a pet this year have no fear. Your perfect partner can be easily found at the local animal shelter. Stop by and let one pick you today. If your not ready to make the commitment to a cat or dog you can also find small furry friends at your local shelters. The point is that everyday hundreds of animals are at shelters just waiting to be taken home and fullfill all their potential. So spread the word as adoption is the only option in 2012.