Posts Tagged ‘rescue’

How Do You Mend a Broken Heart?

A few weeks ago, I lost my companion. He died in my arms. Then, as he was part of an open adoption, and, as his family is Buddhists, we witnessed his memorial service at a Buddhist temple. His soul was released to find another body. I wished him a human body that would love animals as much as he was loved. Many animals are neglected, abused, and unloved. We need more advocates and more humans who love and respect others as they would want to be loved and respected themselves.

Dudley’s soul’s release was my release to find another dog in need of a home to be loved and to be cherished. I will never forget Dudley, as I have not forgotten my four-legged family members who were there before he joined our family:

  • Tzippy (my first beagle and my first dog),
  • Ginger (my first basset),
  • Cinnamon (my stray dog),
  • Cori (my basset after Ginger died),
  • Basil (my first foster, my first foster failure, and my first adoptee),
  • Zack (my bagle (beagle-basset mix),
  • Cocoa (our mutt from the Island of St. Maarten),
  • Brie (our first cat),
  • Cammie (our white cat who loved to terrorize our dogs),
  • Bailey and Dudley (our fist bonded pair and our first open adoption case).

No, you never forget them. The new arrivals just mend your heart. They give that piece of their heart that fits into the hole the previous pet left.

So, this time, after Dudley left us, how did I mend my broken heart? Well, I adopted two bonded brothers from BROOD. They are 11-mothn-old bassaniels (basset-spaniel mixes). They make me smile again. But more importantly, they make my Carrie happy again. Introduction took literally 2 seconds. I placed the pups behind a gate in a room. Carrie came in, sniffed them while her tail was wagging so fast. We let the pups out and within seconds the three of them were running in our yard together. And that’s when my broken heart was really mended. It was mended when I saw my old, soon to be 11 year old, sick with cancer dog perk up and play happily with her kind.



Carrie and Nigel Sleeping Together

What Rescue Is All About

Warning: Get a box of Kleenex.

This is what rescue is all about:

Take a Chance on Me!

Don’t buy, adopt a pet! You will save a life. And here’a a video that absolutely needs to go viral:

Wake County SPCA – Take a Chance on Me from Crawford Winstead on Vimeo.

RIP Raven

A few days ago, I posted these words on my Facebook wall:

It takes a village.

This sentence, once a title of a book written by Hilary R. Clinton, has been used in so many ways by so many people. The sentence can fit anything that takes a group effort. In my case, as I’m heavily involved with animal rescue and animal activism, the words reflect the work that many of my virtual and personal friends have worked so hard to do: to alleviate the suffering of animals.

Raven, a cute little puppy that I never met, was the crux of that sentence. Raven was 1-1/2 years old and was one signature away on the adoption contract from going to her new forever home. Sadly, she started losing feeling in her back legs, prompting Dawn Joslin, her kind-hearted rescuer, to decide to take her to the Penn Veterinary Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) to be diagnosed and cured. Unfortunately, the cure was never found. Raven was sent to the Rainbow Bridge, which is a euphemism that we, animal lovers, use for death. It took two weeks for poor Raven to go from hopeful recovery to hopeless condition.

During the hopeful moments, I blogged here, and I also posted on my Facebook wall, about Raven’s need for financial backing. There was hope for recovery. All she needed, so we thought, was lots of therapy, tender loving care (TLC), and financial help.

Dawn (would post,

They have (hospital staff) Raven playing on the therapy balls. She’s having a grand time. Her neurologist has 4 students that work with her, and they are in love with Raven. They even put her in the wagon and take her around when they do their rounds.

But as the days progressed, Raven was deteriorating. However, her condition, at the time, was not enough to declare it hopeless. At first, she reacted positively to the therapy. Her back legs seemed to get better. But, soon enough, the legs wouldn’t react anymore. It was speculated that she may have had a stroke on the spinal column. She would need to use a K9-cart the rest of her life.

Dogs do fine in K9-carts. Many, especially those dogs that start using the cart at a young age, are able to run and play like normal dogs. A cart was even in the wings for Raven’s use. However, she was soon enough, not only losing the sensation in her back legs, she was losing sensation in one of her front legs. She would need to be carted around because, in order to use a K9-cart, you need full use of the front legs. It was decided that Raven would need to go to a home that would be able to deal with her disabilities. I had that perfect person in mind.

To keep that person’s privacy intact, I’ll call her A. I spoke with A, and though she was full, she agreed to take Raven into her home. Another friend, I’ll call her B, agreed to transport Raven to A’s house, which is 6 hours away. Happily, I updated my status to say, “It takes a village.” I didn’t want to jinx or even say more until the deed was totally sealed. Unfortunately, Raven deteriorated even further.

Raven went from having one spot on her spine to, within her two weeks stay at the hospital, having loads of spots on her spine. The veterinary staff was beginning to think that Raven had cancer, a rapidly aggressive form of cancer. This Friday (Jan 13), she started to have facial twitches, and the staff was concerned that she may end up having seizures. Raven was no longer able to control her bile and bladder. Her urine had to be expressed. There was no hope. The best gift that could be given for this once vivacious puppy was euthanasia. On Saturday night, she was quietly sent to the Rainbow Bridge.

During Raven’s short lifetime under Dawn’s rescue care, she was loved and spoiled. Dawn made sure of that. Here’s part of the note that Dawn sent me:

[Raven] has no chance of recovering. They are giving her a very poor prognosis now. So, it is a very hard decision we are having to make right now. But we have everyone spoiling her and giving her pretty much anything she wants right now.

Unfortunately, Raven left this world with a $9,000.00 hospital debt. We are asking for donations, in Raven’s memory, however small, to help defray the costs. Dawn is a wonderful rescuer who speaks with her heart. She needs your help now! Let’s help Dawn in her time of need!

And let’s, once again, prove that it takes a village!

Getting Rid of a Rotten Apple, Doesn’t Mean You Cut the Tree Down!

oI published my concerns regarding a person who seems not t care about animals but who is hiding behind a rescue organization. That blog posting can be found here. Unfortunately and fortunately, rescuers are an emotional bunch. Fortunately because without their emotional heart many animals would be facing death and abuse. The rescuer’s kind heart tries to save them from that horrible fate. Unfortunately because of their emotional status, many rescuers cannot reason.

My blog posting is not saying that the rescue organization is bad. The blog posting is saying that there is a bad apple in that organization. Most other organizations when encountering a bad apple, get rid of it, and if necessary gives a public apology to the ones exposed, and possibly harmed by that apple. In this context however, the organization chose to sweep the problem under the rug, ignored it, and is pretending that nothing happened. Guess what? Nothing can ruin a reputation than ignoring the problem.

Now, to  all of you who are so appalled that I exposed the bad apple in a rescue organization and sent me the negative comments, here’s food for thought:

Do you mean to say that you all approve a school system in which a teacher is a pedophile and that fact is known by the principal and the teacher is protected by the system? Are you trying to tell me that it is OK not to blow the whistle in that situation?

So in essence, hiding  pedophilic priests by the Catholic church is definitely something that you approve of?

The person who (an I quote) wrote this message:

I was sucessful in pulling these two and now I will tell the shelter to go ahead and euthanize them because you seem to think that I have nothing better to do at midnight than answer your last minute requests

I wonder if you can find any rescue that wants to work like this, I doubt it very much.

Is immune from being investigated, and it is an OK sentiment to say to another person who is trying to save the poor animal?

Oh, but you will say, the other person was hounding the poor person in the middle of the night about that cat. Really? She (I apologize for assuming that the person who wrote the message is a female, as most rescuers tend to be female) didn’t  have to answer your email. If I want to sleep, I don’t answer anything. I shut my computer. So don’t blame the other person for continuing the conversation.  Moreover, this type of conversation goes on every night. That’s how the rescue for ACC animals are handled on a daily basis.

Oh, you say, the number that identified the cats were not complete. Whatever happened to the good-old-fashioned  way of asking for requesting a complete information? Does politeness not exist anymore? Maybe I’m too old and have not learned the new mores.

So, to make a long story short, please learn that I am not against Zani. I am against the person who was so rude, so callous, and so insensitive.

Patrick to Stay at GSVS

The custody battle over Patrick between Garden State Veterinary Specialist (GSVS) and Associated Humane Societies (AHS) is over for now. Judge Joseph Cassini, III ruled today that Patrick will not be removed from the animal hospital to go to Popcorn Park Zoo, the animal shelter the AHS runs in Forked River, NJ.

Patrick was taken to GSVS after he was stabilized by AHS hospital. He was taken to AHS when a maintenance man found the animal hours away from death in a garbage chute. The 1-year-old pit-bull mix was starved and thrown down 19 floors.

According to, the judge ruled ”that Patrick is being ‘adequately cared for’ at the veterinary specialist and will remain there through the criminal trial of the dogs owner and alleged abuser, Kisha Curtis.’

“Patrick is both the victim and evidence in this case,” said the judge.

But the lawyer representing AHS claimed AHS should be awarded custody because it was AHS that first saved him and the law empowers AHS to arrange his adoption. The lawyer went on to accuse the city of Newark and GSVS in attempting financial gain from Patrick.

The attorney representing Newark countered that AHS wanted to capitalize on Patrick for their own gains.

For now, Patrick is safe. According to sources, a GSVS staff member has put in an application to adopt Patrick.

Video: A Walk with Patrick

Patrick feels so good these days it is hard to keep up with him on his long walks.

Happy Mother’s Day from Patrick

Patrick’s First NJ SPCA Hero

Arthur Skinner and an unindentified fan from the Patrick's Movement

This is Arthur Skinner, who, according to the NJ SPCA Facebook Page, was the first to get to Patrick after the maintenance man found him in the trash chute. Arthur kept Patrick company until help arrived. He was the first to give Patrick (after the maintenance man) a sense of what human beings are really like.

Kisha Curtis Pleads “Not Guilty”

Kisha Curtis had her day in court today. Outside the courthouse a number of Patrick supporters were peacefully assembling and making speeches supporting stronger laws against those who abuse animals. Animals can’t speak for themselves, but luckily, there are enough individuals who are willing to speak in their behalf.

As expected, Ms. Curtis pleaded “not guilty.” Her grand jury trial is set for June 2, 2011. Another peaceful assembly is planned for that day. Patrick’s abuse seems to be the straw that broke the camel’s back. People are fed up seeing poor animals suffer in the hands of those who do not care for them and then having those who do the harm get away with it with a slap in the wrist.

More photos available here.

Video of the event

Video streaming by Ustream

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