Archive for the ‘News’ Category
Fitzgeral William, AKA Fitz, is a 4-year-old basset hound. He is a therapy dog who, once a week visits the ThedaCare Regional Cancer Center in Appleton, Wisconsin. His volunteer ours are 1 to 2 hours.
It’s been shown that interacting with a pet releases the chemical oxytocin, a beneficial hormone also known as the “feel-good hormone.” An infusion nurse at the center claims that the chemical helps decrease the patient’s heart rate, helps lower anxiety, and helps reduce feelings of depression. The nurse also claims that “When Fitz comes, it completely brightens the day of our patients and us as staff as well. It’s fantastic for everybody. People don’t want to be here. They don’t want to have cancer, they don’t want to be getting chemotherapy, we have the daunting task of giving people medication that makes them feel very sick and Fitz comes and makes them feel better.”
Way to go, Fitz. I bet you enjoy the petting as much as the patients are enjoying giving it to you.
Fitz and his slave, Molly Johnson, have been volunteering since November of 2016.
In 1983, we brought home a tiny 8-week-old basset hound puppy. Six years later, we found a beautiful mixed-breed (part German shepherd-lab-golden mix). The dogs weren’t best friends, but didn’t hate each other either. The German shepherd mix never fussed when we took only the basset to the vet, except for one day. That day, the basset was taken to be euthanized. She was over 14 year old and suffering from kidney failure. How the German shepherd mix knew that her sister was leaving this world, we never know. But she was so distraught that she almost ran into the window trying to get out to be with her sister in her last moments.
Later on, we acquired a pack of 5. When one would be on death bed, there always was one or two who would keep guard by the sick dog’s bedside. So, when a question as to whether one should let two basset hounds be around a baby that was dying was posted in FB on a basset hound group I belonged to, I didn’t hesitate in saying yes. The family were worried that the basset hounds would be too stressed out. I knew from experience that the hounds would be an awesome source of comfort and the hounds would find comfort as well. Today, I found this article about them in yahoo:
Basset Hounds Wouldn’t Leave Dying Infant’s SideBy NICOLE PELLETIEREGood Morning America
A family’s two basset hounds refused to leave a dying child’s side after doctor’s informed her parents the devastating news that she wouldn’t survive.
“It was really nice,” mom Mary Hall of Deluth, Minnesota, told ABC News. “It brought us a lot of comfort to have them [there]. But by the end of the first day, you could see they were stressed out and depressed. Normally, they’re very happy-go-lucky. We knew they could sense there was something wrong.”
Nora Hall, 5 months old, died Monday after suffering a stroke April 6 and spending three weeks in the hospital.
The stroke had affected both sides of her brain, causing severe damage, her mother said..
The family dogs, 8-year-old Grumpy and Gracie, fell in love with Nora as soon as she arrived from the hospital, Hall said.
“Gracie, especially, took on the role as second mother,” she said. “Whenever Nora would cry, Gracie would run to see what was wrong. She was always, always by Nora and kissing her and making sure she was OK.”
As Nora’s days were sadly numbered, Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis asked Mary and John Hall whether they had any final wishes for their daughter.
“I asked, ‘If you could let us have our dogs [at the hospital], we’d really appreciate that,'” Hall recalled. “I didn’t want to go home and have them sniffing around for her and not knowing where she went. They lowered the bed so the dogs could lay with her and Gracie ran up and licked her [Nora].”
Hall said she is grateful for the hospital honoring the special exception of having Nora, Gracie and Grumpy together one last time.
The family snapped photos of the touching goodbyes and posted them on Facebook.
“She was just a really happy baby,” Hall said. “Before we went into the hospital, she’d just start laughing. She was happy all the time.”
Wrangler knew the rules: He was not to go up on the new bed. But on September 8, 2015. Wrangler kept breaking the rules. Finnaly, his owner woke up annoyed, only to find that there was some crackling and smoke coming from the attic. Wrangler saved his family’s life. How about that! It’s rare to see a basset in this position. You, go Wrangler.
By the way, the family lost all their possessions in the fire. If you can find it in your heart to contribute to replace some of their possessions, please click on this link:
Bassets: Are They Couch Potatoes?
Most people think of a basset hound as the perfect couch-potato dog. Most bassets are low key, don’t disturb my sleep kind of dogs. Many also claim that because basset hounds are stubborn by nature (after all, they were bred to follow their nose and get that rabbit out of the briar patch) are therefore difficult to train, and few expect them to be obedient. I have had bassets in my life for over 30 years. Some of my bassets were downright stubborn and I learned to follow their commands. Others, especially my current 9-year-old basset obeys me simply because she loves me. But recently, after following a new “friend” in Facebook, I found out about a basset who can do something that never in my wildest dream did I imagine a basset being able to do. He just recently became a CS-ATCH, which I found out means Canine Specialist Agility Trial Champion. His name is Diesel, and his slave or guardian (I hate the name “owner”) is Shelly Nowicki Gordon who is the president and intake coordinatior of ABC Basset Hound Rescue of NY.
So let’s find out a little bit about this amazing hound. Diesel, according to Shelly, came from a backyard breeder (BYB). Most of the rescue bassets come either from BYB or puppy mill because a bona-fide breeder will take your hound back if for some reason you need to have it rehomed. So don’t be fooled when you purchase a basset. It doesn’t matter that they have AKC papers, as the American Kennel Club is not vigilant about what type of breeders are breeding the dogs. Anyway, if you are to get a BYB dog, you might as well get a rescued dog. It’ll make room for new rejected dogs to be rehomed rather than facing euthanasia in a shelter.
Anyway, back to Diesel’s story. Diesel and his sister Andi were purchased together. But the person who bought them could not housetrain them (bassets take up to 18 months to realize that the grass “carpet” and not the indoor carpet is the place to go). This person, however, did the right thing. She didn’t take the dogs to the shelter, where more than likely they meet death within a few days, she took them to ABC rescue. At ABC, foster homes were set up, and the person changed her mind. She was going to try and work with them.
A month passed by and ABC was called again. The dogs had to go. The person (female) could not housetrain them. The original fosters homes were full, so Shelly offered to help by fostering one of them. She figured that as they were only 7 months old, they would soon be adopted. Shelly chose to foster the male hound (Diesel), since she always had males.
The joke was on Shelly. For some reason, nobody wanted to adopt Diesel. And after few weeks, Diesel was adopted by the Gordon family. Lucky for Diesel, Shelly had a friend who was working agility with her basset hounds, which spurn Shelly to try to sign Diesel up for agility class.
So Diesel was taking classes, but it was not until the same friend who talked Shelly to take classes talked her to sign him up for local trials. At the first trial, Diesel surprised every one by getting the red ribbon for second place. Shelly was hooked.
Diesel Gets His Ribbons
Three years later, Diesel got the CS-ATCH that he and his slave were working so hard for. An exhuberant Shelly says that the day Diesel got his CS-ATCH was “ One of the best days of my life. From a dog that couldn’t be housebroken…to a dog that can do a teeter and weave poles.”
An exchange student from Germany who lived with the Gordons once said, “Diesel will do anything to make [Shelly] happy.” Shelly says that, “Standing at the start line next to me, running with him for 40–60 seconds, and crossing the finish line together…that makes me happy. Ribbons or no ribbons. He’s a great teammate and I’m honored that he was chosen for me.”
Diesel’s Triumphant Moment
It’s just awesome to see Diesel confidently go through the entire agility course. So, if you are into doing some agility work and want to have a basset. Don’t hesitate, if the dog loves you and you work hard together, you will be a great team.
And here’s a nice side note: In 2008, Diesel’s mom (Eeyore) was for sale in the paper. Shelly convinced the owner to turn her in to rescue. And she adopted her too. She’s a therapy dog and goes to a nursing home on Tuesdays.
As you can see, bassets rock. They are not for couches only, anymore.
By the way, if you live in the Northern NY state area and want to adopt a basset please contact ABC Basset Hound Rescue of NY.
Sea World in San Diego just pioneered a revolutionary reproductive technique that will potentially help threatened or endangered species in the wild. They were able to produce a healthy penguin via artificial insemination by using frozen-then-thawed semen. The result of this technique is shown in the video. He is a healthy 12-week-old penguin. Enjoy the video.
I just found this sad news at Noah’s Ark Website:
Today has to be one of the hardest days I have experienced in rescue. At 5:26 this evening, I had to say good-bye to BUBBLES. I am still in shock, as I am typing this. The last two days she has been happy and playful like she has been for the last three months. She quit eating even prosciutto this morning and I discovered her abdomen had become swollen. I looked at her gums and they were barely pink so I rushed her to the hospital. We did bloodwork and x-rays of her lungs to see what had suddenly changed. Her bloodwork was great and she was not anemic. She was not getting enough oxygen. The x-rays showed that the tumors in her lungs had almost doubled in size. One lobe of her lungs was not functioning at all and was putting pressure on her heart. She couldn’t get enough oxygen and fluid was building up in her lower half because of pressure on the heart. My only options were to say good-bye or to do a Thoracotamy and remove the lung lobe that was not functioning. I could not put this amazing dog through any more surgery. She has been the happiest I have ever seen an animal be and has loved every second of Life since I rescued her. I knew I had to say good-bye. I brought her home and let her rest in all of her special places with me wrapped around her in our typical spoon position. I made arrangements for Dr. Jason King, that knew Bubbles well and loved her, to come to the house to say our final good-byes. Bubbles went peacefully to sleep cradled in my arms.
I am sure this note is as much a shock to everyone as it is to me. I still can’t believe she is gone. If I had to do it all over again, I would not change a thing. Bubbles had the biggest heart I have ever experienced. She fought to get her chance at happiness and she WON. She was the happiest most loving dog. We will all miss her. I wish we had more time together but the time we had was amazing. I have cherished every second with her since the day she was rescued. She lived her Life completely to the final breathe. She knew Love. She gave Love. She was Love. She will forever be missed and forever cherished. She never gave up on us and we never gave up on here.
There’s a deadly virus that has jumped species (from pigs and birds to dogs) and can be deadly to dogs. There are no vaccines as of yet. Dog owners should be aware of the symptoms:
If you dog experiences any or all of the symptoms, take it immediately to see a veterinarian. The sooner the disease is diagnosed, the better chances your dog has for survival. Although this disease has not spread to many states (currently only 3 states—California, Ohio, and Michigan—have seen cases of this round-shaped, single-stranded DNA genome virus, known as circoviurus), one cannot ever be overly cautious. So, if you are about to board your dog or visit dog parks, just err on the side of caution if your dog experiences any symptoms.
Dawn Smith: The hounds were in the air 4 hours and I think 35 minutes. Compartment is pressurized. Our protocol for flying hounds is: Feed with gas-X & Pepcid 5 hours pre flight. 2 Hours preflight we give another gas x and pepcid, along with carbo veg. As they are put into crates we use lavender oil essence topically. All Daphneyland hounds have been trained for calming with the song “When you wish upon a star” simply singing this song to them assures them it’s bedtime, and they lay down for sleep. All hounds slept through loading.
What do you do when you run a rescue organization, you are bursting at the seams, the holidays are soon approaching, which means more animals will be coming up in need of good homes, and you have no room for the new dogs to go to? That was exactly the dilemma that Dawn Smith of Basset Hound Rescue Network of Daphneyland, in Acton, CA, was facing. Luckily, the basset hound rescue community is a tightly woven community and for Dawn Smith, there was a solution. ABC Basset Hound Rescue of New York was experiencing a shortage of bassets and an abundance of homes wanting to adopt. So, the solution was a no brainer: Bassets were going to be flown from California to NYC and then placed onto vans to go to their new homes in upstate NY.
The whole process was not an easy one. There were vet checks, blood checks, health certificates to get, paperwork to fill, airplane arrangements to make, etc. It took months of planning. The weekend before the actual flight that was to take place on Monday, December 2, 2012, the hounds needed to be bathed, their crate labeled and assembled. Volunteers were called, who answered in kind.
The hounds were off on Monday. Twenty were originally scheduled to go, but one stayed back home due to illness. Nineteen took off for the 4.5 hour flight. What is the secret of sending 19 hounds on a cargo plane flight without a hitch, without a potty accident (well, one dog had an accident)? In Dawn’s words, “Each crate had a label with the hounds name, vet records showing health cert, HW testing, rabies, vacs., etc., taped on top in waterproof baggies, all hounds wore collars with names on the ABC numbered metal ID tag, as well as the back of the collar. We were taking no chances of identity theft. We worked for the last 2+ months on setting this u … we sent a “pack” of well socialized, rehabilitated hounds to ABC for placement in their homes, [thus] freeing up 20 spaces for hounds that will be facing euthanasia in the month of December. Flying hounds meant only stress for 4.5 hours vs the stress of a 7–10 day ground transport in winter.” And, there was another trick up her sleeve, “Over the many years, we have developed a protocol that has kept our babies calm during flight—or as calm as can be expected. Five hours before preflight, they are fed and given gas-x pepcid and carbo veg. About 1 hour before crating, they get a cookie with another gas x and carbo veg. We let them run and play for 2 hours before crating so they are well exercised, then we dose them with 7–8 drops of pure lavender oil essence. All hounds are ingrained with the bedtime song of When you wish upon a star, and throughout the loading process, volunteers are walking and singing to them to reassure them. They did great. All 19. All hounds slept through loading.”
Daphneyland and ABC Rescue proved that it takes a village to make miracles happen. Today, Saturday, December 07, 2013, 10 of the 18 adoptable hounds (one went home to his/her furever home upon landing in NYC) found their furever homes.
The basset community kept an eye on the FB sites and joyful tears were shed for these lucky hounds. Yes, no-kill solution is viable, it just takes people who can think outside the box.
Kisha Curtis had her day in court and was spared by the judicial system. She did not get the maximum sentence that many animal rescue advocates were hoping for (18-months in jail, a $5,000 fine, and community service). She received probation. According to the judge, Curtis will be required to serve 18 months probation and forfeit her right to Patrick. She’ll also be required to pay nearly $2,000 to the New Jersey ASPCA, which gave the Patrick emergency care before he was moved to a veterinary hospital in Tinton Falls.
In issuing the sentence, the judge said the dog survived and is now thriving. Moreover, according to the judge, this case led to tougher penalties for animal cruelty. The judge also said that Curtis was unlikely to commit such a crime again. Let us hope so.
I guess we still live in a world wherein an animal’s well being is still not respected. Animals are still viewed as property and not as individual living beings with feelings. We made some progress, we just need bigger steps. We need to understand that starving a living being to the brink of death is a HUGE crime, not something to brush under the rug. I am not happy with the outcome. I don’t think that Ms. Curtis has learned her lesson. Hopefully, she will never get a pet again. However, I do respect the law and if that’s what the court decided, I will just have to learn to live with it. But I will continue to fight for animal rights and report animal abuse.
On a happier note, the court system granted Dr. and Mrs. Scavelli, the veterinarian and wife duo who treated Patrick back to health and then fostered him in their loving home for 2 1/2 years, full custody of Patrick. Patrick will continue to live for the rest of his life in the only home he knows, the only home that loved him and cherished him. There is some justice for Patrick, just not full justice.
We demand justice for Patrick
August 29, 2013, Kisha Curtis will be sentenced by the Judge and the Essex County Court system. We are hoping that the maximum penalty will be implemented.