Two dogs, two cats and a chicken round out the top five in the 2018 Pet Rich List, a Forbes-like ranking of the wealthiest pets, compiled by insurance comparison site, comparethemarket.com.
A German Shepherd named Gunther IV is worth $375 million, thanks to an inheritance.
American Grumpy Cat made his No. 2 $100 million fortune through merchandising, sponsorship and media appearances.
And Lucky Gigoo, a hen from the U.K., ranks fifth with a $15 million inheritance from a publisher whose eccentricity was fully realized only upon his death.
The family of late Australian conservationist and "Crocodile Hunter" Steve Irwin are following in his footsteps with a new television show dedicated to their wildlife conservation work.
"Crikey! It's the Irwins" will follow Irwin's wife Terri and their two children, Bindi and Robert, looking after animals at their Australia Zoo in Queensland as well as heading out on various expeditions.
Irwin, who was watched by audiences around the world in his popular television programs, died in 2006 after a stingray's serrated barb pierced his heart while filming off Australia's northern Great Barrier Reef.
"We are continuing on in dad's footsteps and everything that we do today at Australia Zoo and with our Wildlife Warriors work is exactly what he started," Bindi Irwin said of the family's conservation organization in an interview for Reuters.
"In the show we'll have some amazing moments of reflecting on what he used to do, from feeding crocodiles to cuddling koalas. and then you'll see us doing the exact same things making sure that everything he loved the most carries on into the future."
Bindi Irwin, who has previously had her own television show, will be seen working at the zoo's wildlife hospital. Her brother said the family also takes trips abroad.
"Also we traveled to so many different places all over the globe," Robert Irwin said.
"We'll take you to Africa. We'll take you to the Great Barrier Reef. We'll take you up north to remote northern Queensland where we do our crocodile research. It's all about wildlife, it's all about conservation and fun as a family."
Bob Barker has been hospitalized, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed.
The 94-year-old former host of The Price is Right and friend of Talkin’ Pets and animals everywhere was taken to the hospital after emergency medical personnel were called to his Hollywood home around 1 p.m. on Monday.
The Los Angeles Fire Department would not confirm Barker was the patient, only that a 94-year-old patient from an address believed to be his was taken to the hospital with "non-life threatening" injuries.
No additional information was released.
Pennsylvania's governor has signed legislation empowering law enforcement to help dogs and cats left unattended in cars.
“A few months ago, we celebrated the one-year anniversary of the first significant strengthening of Pennsylvania’s animal protection statutes in nearly 30 years with the enactment of Act 10 of 2017, which included Libre’s Law,” said Gov. Tom Wolf.
“Today, I am proud to sign this bill and build on the progress we have made for animals in the commonwealth. Thank you to the advocates and legislators who made this possible.”
The law adds vehicle entry to an existing law that allows officers to enter a property to provide care or impound an animal believed to be a victim of neglect or living below minimum care standards.
This new law raises awareness of the dangers of leaving pets in parked cars and empowers law enforcement to make decisions on behalf of an animal’s welfare by:
- Allowing a police office, humane officer, animal control officer or other public safety professionals to remove a dog or cat from an unattended motor vehicle if they believe the dog or cat is in imminent danger or harm after a reasonable search for the operator of the vehicle.
- Protecting a police officer, humane officer or public safety professional who removes a dog or cat from an unattended vehicle from liability for any damages.
- Requiring that an officer who removes a dog or cat from an unattended vehicle must leave a conspicuous note for the owner stating the officer’s information and the information for where to pick up the pet.
- Updating the definition of neglect, prohibiting the confinement of a dog or cat in an unattended motor vehicle in a manner that would endanger the health and well-being of the animal.
When Hurricane Florence struck the Southeast U.S. last month, in addition to devastating homes and communities, it also flooded industrial farms. News reports showed the tragic images of these facilities flooded to roof-level, and the public watched in horror as 4.1 million chickens and 5,500 pigs were left to drown inside. The fragility of factory farming has never been so obvious, and it has never been more urgent for us to change how farm animals are treated in this country.
On industrial farms, tens of thousands of dairy cows, pigs, chickens and turkeys are caged, crated or otherwise closely confined in windowless sheds. On farms of this magnitude there is virtually no ability to move or evacuate the animals, nor for animals to escape on their own in the event of a flood or other emergency. Yet many of these farms are located directly in flood zones.
The federal PETS Act, which passed after Hurricane Katrina, protects household pets and service animals during disasters by requiring local agencies to have disaster evacuation and response plans in place. Other facilities that keep, breed or exhibit large numbers of animals—including commercial-scale puppy breeders, research labs and most zoos—must be licensed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and apply the animal-care standards mandated by the Animal Welfare Act. While there’s been legislation introduced in Congress to require those facilities to have disaster plans in place, animals on factory farms have no protections and are particularly at risk.
In addition to unimaginable animal suffering, disaster-affected industrial farming operations create environmental and health catastrophes. The overwhelming concentration of animals creates an equally overwhelming concentration of animal waste, often held in open-air “lagoons,” many of which overflowed during Florence. This sent massive quantities of fecal matter, antibiotics, infectious bacteria and toxic chemicals pouring into the flood waters and blanketing the region.
While we cannot predict when the next storm will come, we can be certain there will be more and that the dangers will only increase in future disasters, as climate change is expected to produce more frequent and more intense hurricanes. We can already see the effects with Hurricane Michael, which barreled down shortly after Florence and threatened dairy and poultry operations with power outages and flooding. It is still too early to evaluate the damage Michael left in its wake.
Before you and your furry friend venture out into the yard or the neighborhood this fall, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) wants to make sure you familiarize yourself with these plants so you can best keep your pets safe.
Autumn crocus (Colchicum autumnale), also known as the Meadow Saffron, is a perennial that blooms in the fall. This is not to be confused with the spring crocus (Crocus sp.) that blooms in the spring and is non-toxic. Autumn crocus can be extremely toxic to dogs and cats and pet parents should be on high alert for this plant. Problems from ingestion may consist of vomiting and diarrhea, weakness, a decrease in production of the cells responsible for immunity, carrying oxygen and blood clotting, multi-organ failure and even death.
Chrysanthemums, also known as mums or daisies, are a popular fall flower and come in various colors. Chrysanthemums are considered a mild to moderately toxic plant for pets. Depending on how much your cat or dog eats, symptoms associated with ingestion can consist of vomiting, diarrhea, drooling and wobbliness.
During fall, certain trees drop leaves, fruits and seeds onto the ground, creating a smorgasbord opportunity for our four-legged friends.
Apples, including crabapples, contain cyanide in all parts of the plant except the fruit flesh. Cyanide affects the enzymes responsible for oxygen transport and prevents cells from using the oxygen in the blood stream—making fallen apples a dangerous snack for pets. Signs of a cyanide toxicity include dilated pupils, difficulty breathing, bright red gum color, shock and death. However, cyanide toxicity is rare in dogs and cats because the whole seeds or pit must be masticated and the leaves must be wilting or stressed for the cyanide to be released. Dogs and cats will often develop signs of stomach upset, such as vomiting and diarrhea if they ingest parts of an apple. Fruit left on the ground to spoil and ferment can also pose a risk for alcohol toxicity if consumed.
Oak trees shed leaves and acorn seeds during the fall season. Acorns are also commonly used in fall decorations and contain high concentration of tannins. Tannins can be irritating to a pet’s digestive system, so vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal discomfort can develop with one-time exposures. Kidney damage has also been reported in grazing animals such as cows and horses, but it’s rare for dogs and cats, because they generally don’t eat enough acorns to cause long-term damage.
Red maple trees make for a stunning fall display, but horse lovers should beware! Red maples contain a toxin that causes a breakdown of the red blood cells that leads to anemia. Horses can exhibit signs of weakness, pale gum color and elevated heart rates if they’ve ingested red maple leaves. Thankfully, red maples are considered nontoxic to dogs and cats, and just slight stomach upset is possible if the leaves are ingested.
Toxic molds can grow on fruits, seeds and grains, and even small ingestions can cause significant side effects to the nervous system in pets. In addition, large ingestions of leaves, seeds or corn cobs can become lodged in the intestinal tract and cause a blockage. This Fall do your best to keep your pets safe. __________________________________________________________________
Four beautiful kittens were found close to death after being callously dumped in a bin bag. Fortunately they were discovered in the nick of time and are now being nursed back to health at Raystede Centre For Animal Welfare in Lewes.
The tiny five-week-old kittens were found inside the bin bag which had been dumped in Abbots Wood, East Sussex. Luckily for the kittens, an inquisitive dog enjoying his early walk ventured into the undergrowth and sniffed out the bag.
The kittens would not have survived for much longer had the dog not intervened. All the kittens were then rushed to Raystede and it proved to be not a moment too soon.
The four ginger and white kittens have been named Chester, Ivy, Ash and Rowan. When they arrived at Raystede, Chester, who is the smallest of the litter, was motionless and appeared to be dead.
But on closer inspection he was taking extremely shallow breaths and fighting desperately for his life. All of the kittens were suffering terribly from hypothermia and dehydration. They were also malnourished, infested with fleas and riddled with internal parasites.
Immediately all four were given fluids via a drip and placed on heat pads. Chester was kept under surveillance to ensure his condition didn’t deteriorate. With plenty of tender loving care from the cattery team along with veterinary care administered from the onsite vet, all the kittens pulled through.
They have all received vitamin injections and are eating well. The kittens are gaining weight and getting stronger by the day. Each of the kittens has been treated for fleas and other parasites so they are far more comfortable and their skin and coat is looking better.
Chester still has some ongoing health issue so the Raystede team are keeping a close eye on him but he is happy and he and his siblings all love being given their special vitamin paste which is helping them receive all the nutrients that they were lacking upon arrival.
All the kittens will stay at Raystede until they are strong and confident enough to be rehomed. They will be vaccinated and neutered when they are old enough.
Sadly, it seems dumping kittens is still something that is becoming an ever more regular occurrence. Raystede relies totally on donations to give all the cats and kittens they receive the best possible care. The Raystede team are not sure how much Chester’s ongoing health issues will cost, but much-needed donations ensure they can keep treating not only him but more kittens in the future.
For further information on these kittens and more visit www.raystede.org.
Every pet owner has a story of something their dog or cat ate that they shouldn’t have. But in certain cases, the item can be deadly because of its size or ingredients.
Take senior dog Ruby, who we met at Urban Animal in downtown Seattle. Owner Kary Schott checked off the long list of random items Ruby had ingested over the years.
“A bikini, socks, underwear, bras, sometimes all of those things at once. In the beginning of this year, there were two surgeries within three months of each other.” Ruby’s most recent surgery was to remove a sweatshirt.
Veterinarian Cherri Trusheime says dogs like Ruby aren’t so uncommon. “I’ve seen a dog, a good-sized dog, eat an entire comforter.” Often, it will take an x-ray to figure out what the dog got into. She showed KIRO 7 one x-ray in which you can see the outline of a plastic King Kong toy that a dog swallowed whole. Trusheime has also seen broken off bully sticks lodged in an esophagus and tags, meant for the collar, ending up in the stomach.
All those dogs recovered after surgery, but there are other cases when certain foods can also come with higher risk. While chocolate is considered one of the most common foods to avoid, Dr. Trusheime says it’s the darker chocolate that’s the problem, including baker’s chocolate. Other potential toxins include Xylitol, an artificial sweetener found in gum and grapes or raisins, which are only toxic to certain breeds of dogs. Common pharmaceuticals like ibuprofen can also be dangerous as well as mood-altering drugs. Pet owners don’t always want to admit their dog got into their stash of marijuana or edibles.
“They (the dogs) just kind of are out of it, then they startle very quickly,” says Dr. Trusheime. She tells us that THC just doesn’t agree with animals. “I've never seen a dog that I think enjoyed being high on marijuana. I think they are incredibly freaked out.” It’s not common for THC to be life-threatening, unless its ingested in large quantities.
Accidental ingestions can be expensive for pet owners, from medication to surgery, with costs ranging anywhere from $800 to $5,000. Take one of Dr. Trusheime’s most memorable cases: A dog that swallowed five whole rubber duckies. The boxer took them from its owner’s craft project. “The dog went into the room where the rubber duckies were, and they were completely gone.”
As for Ruby, she’s still working on keeping her paws off the wrong stuff. Kary says “It kinda goes in streaks. I think it’s anxiety related.” That’s why Kari has put her on a kind of puppy-prozac which has helped.
Dr. Trusheime says dogs who aren't getting enough activity and have too much energy are more prone to get into trouble. She also tells us catching the accidental ingestion quickly is key. After a couple days, the item could become catastrophic to the animal’s health.
Bears love honey, that smooth, sticky, golden treat that Winnie-The-Pooh was always giddy over.
So it’s no surprise that a black bear got into some at a local bee company, but what is surprising, according to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) is that the culprit made repeat visits.
“Pretty crazy, never ever thought we would have had a bear here,” said The Heritage Bee Co.’s co-owner Debbie Gray.
The bee company is located south of Base Borden in Mulmur Township.
Night surveillance video shows a black bear rummaging through boxes of honey flats before making off with the liquid gold, and doing some damage in his travels.
“We’ve lost a lot of beekeeping equipment, honey frames, and half our heritage chicken flock,” said Gray.
The MNRF took the step of installing a bear trap loaded with honey, marshmallows and vanilla extract. They say if they catch the furry felon they will relocate him to a new home much further north.
It’s believed they are dealing with a juvenile male and the ministry says there's no way to know if the bear will return, and notes it’s getting close to the time that bears go into hibernation.
A New Castle mom is fighting the city to keep her 160 pound pot-bellied pig. Farm animals are not allowed within city limits, according to city code, but Joy Burke said the 10-month-old pig named Dazie is her emotional support animal.
Burke has had her pig for about a year and said it's never been a problem until someone complained to animal control. She claims Dazie helps her with anxiety and panic attacks.
"It takes my mind off of what is wrong with me with what is wrong with her because she gets upset when I am upset," said Burke.
Burke got her in February when Dazie was just 15 pounds. The family said she acts more like a dog.
"She is the biggest part of the family," said Burke. "I just love her so much. I can’t see being without her."
According to current city code, it is illegal to own, board, keep or maintain pigs within the legal boundaries of the city. Exemptions to the provisions may be issued by the Board of Public Works and Safety and people which such exemptions must submit to the Board a written application.
There is a scheduled hearing in November with the city to determine if Burke can keep her pig within city limits. Burke has filled out paperwork to request exemption to the provision.
"We are going to abide by our ordinances and just go from there," said Mayor Greg York.
Mayor York said they will be looking for legal documentation from a doctor.
"All we are asking for is that a doctor would have moral standards behind it, that it feasibly is healthy for a pig to live in a house with a human," he said.
Burke does have a letter signed by a licensed clinical social worker, or LCSW, that diagnoses her and authorizes an emotional support animal. It does not say what that animal should or should not be.
According to a state law that took effect July 1, an individual who moves from another state may provide documentation from a social worker.
"I really think it is none of nobody’s business what kind of animal I have," said Burke.