Shy Wolf Sanctuary Education and Experience Center coordinated with Big Oak Wolf Sanctuary located in Northeast Florida in a joint rescue effort to save and provide veterinary services to seven feral eight-month-old wolfdogs. These pups were part of an intentional litter that the breeder was not able to sell. Irresponsible breeding is a major problem that impacts domestic and exotic animals alike.
When Big Oak Wolf Sanctuary transferred this family of seven into its enclosure, Shy Wolf Sanctuary stepped in to cover the spay and neuter expenses. That many animals in one rescue is a major commitment and undertaking. The rescued siblings consist of five males and two females. Spaying and neutering are essential to prevent unsafe breeding practices and unwanted litters as they approach breeding age. These procedures also help prevent serious health issues such as uterine infections and cancer.
With the efforts of both organizations, these neglected pups are now safe and slowly getting used to their new life in their spacious home at Big Oak Wolf Sanctuary. Shy Wolf Sanctuary’s mission of rescuing abandoned, neglected, and abused animals extends beyond Southwest Florida. Their team is grateful to be able to provide any kind of assistance to help all animals in need and values partnering with other organizations to save more lives.
It's not just cold and flu season for us, canine flu and other viruses that make dogs sick are also spreading.
Like people, pets are also dealing with plenty of viruses that can make them sick right now. There's canine influenza and pneumovirus.
"Most dogs will experience 10 to 14 days of runny nose and coughing, but there is a significant subset of those dogs that will progress to pneumonia that can be very life threatening," said Dr. Cynda Crawford with the University of Florida's College of Veterinary Medicine.
Some animal shelters have had to suspend dog adoptions because of flu or pneumovirus cases, like the Pinellas County Animal Services.
"Once it starts spreading, it just goes," said Pinellas Animal Services Director Doug Brightwell.
Dr. Crawford said the message is the same for sick pets as it is for sick people.
"Limit their activity so that they can get some rest. Be sure to confine them at home because whatever's causing their cold is likely contagious to other dogs," she said.
While there is no vaccine for pneumovirus, there is a canine influenza vaccine. So if you're planning to board your dogs over Christmas, now is the time to get the vaccination.
"The timing is so important because their antibody production is what needs to build up," said veterinarian Dr. Jimmy Davis.
Dog owners should always be on the lookout for warning signs. If your dog stops eating or has difficulty breathing, contact your veterinarian. Getting your dog vaccinated for canine influenza may not prevent infection altogether, but it may reduce the severity and duration of the illness, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association.
Audacy’s station cluster in Buffalo raised more than $81,000 for a local chapter of the SPCA during a recent radiothon.
The radiothon saw on-air personalities and staffers from WTSS (102.5 FM, Star 102.5), WBEN (930 AM) and WLKK (107.7 FM, The Wolf) raise cash and awareness for SPCA Serving Erie County.
“We take the opportunity to support the amazing and important work the SPCA carries out each and every day in our community very seriously and express incredible gratitude for our listeners who rally to help fund the SPCA’s mission to make a difference,” Tim Holly, the senior vice president and market manager at Audacy Buffalo, said in a statement.
The radiothon was broadcast live on Thursday, December 8 and featured interviews and stories about how the SPCA is impacting the local community.
The total amount of money raised for SPCA Serving Erie County was $81,102.15.
A new study from U.S. News & World Report’s 360 Reviews finds Portland, Oregon to be the top city in the U.S. to be a dog parent, followed by our own beautiful city of Tampa. Tampa has one of the highest volumes of dog parks per capita in America, and a vast majority of restaurants and cafes have dog-friendly covered patio seating.
For the “Top 50 U.S. Cities To Be a Dog Owner” study, 360 Reviews scored each city by a variety of factors to determine overall ratings; two key categories, environment and services, were considered, along with four subcategories such as dog parks per capita, walkability, temperature range, veterinarian costs and more.
Tampa fell down the ranks due to a lower walkability score, and frequency of days with temperatures above 90 degrees. The city performed well in other categories such as veterinary costs. Dog owners have access to the fourth-highest number of dog parks per capita (4.9 parks for every 100,000 residents) in Tampa. There are also 242 dog-friendly restaurants in Tampa, Florida (18th-highest), as well as 62.5 pet stores and vet offices per 10,000 establishments (39th-highest).
Ybor City just recently broke ground on a brand new 4,000-square-foot dog park. Two Shepherds Taproom has become a go-to dog-friendly spot. The city also landed an indoor/outdoor dog park and bar with special memberships for pups.
The beautiful stretch of Bayshore Boulevard, Curtis Hixon Park, the Tampa Riverwalk, our plethora of breweries and more make our fantastic city a paradise for pups. Our own Tampa International Airport has a pet relief area, as well.
Dog bars to visit in Tampa:
- Two Shepherds Taproom, 4813 N. Grady Avenue
- City Dog Cantina, 1208 E Kennedy Blvd #114
- Pups Pub, 2202 W Kennedy Blvd
Earlier in 2022, SmartAsset ranked Tampa as one of the top 5 dog-friendly cities in America. Sparkman Wharf also just put up signs for a new pop up dog park in downtown Tampa. Midtown Tampa just debuted its own massive luxurious pet store this summer.
The man who shot and wounded Lady Gaga’s dog walker and stole her French bulldogs last year took a plea deal and was sentenced to 21 years in prison, officials said.
The Lady Gaga connection was a coincidence, authorities have said. The motive was the value of the French bulldogs, a breed that can run into the thousands of dollars, and detectives do not believe the thieves knew the dogs belonged to the musician.
James Howard Jackson, one of three men and two accomplices who participated in the violent robbery, pleaded no contest to one count of attempted murder, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
Jackson and others drove around Hollywood, the city of West Hollywood and the San Fernando Valley on Feb. 24, 2021 “looking for French bulldogs,” prosecutors said previously. They found Lady Gaga’s dog walker, Ryan Fischer, with the pop star’s three pets.
Jackson shot Fischer during the robbery near the famed Sunset Boulevard, during which two of the dogs were taken. A nearby doorbell camera recorded the dog walker screaming “Oh, my God! I’ve been shot!” and “Help me!” and “I’m bleeding out from my chest!”
Fischer later called the violence a “very close call with death” in social media posts.
The dogs, named Koji and Gustav, were returned several days later by a woman who was also charged in the crime. The pop star had offered a $500,000 reward — “no questions asked” — to be reunited with the dogs at the time.
Jackson also admitted the allegation of inflicting great bodily injury and to a prior strike, the DA’s office said.
“The plea agreement holds Mr. Jackson accountable for perpetrating a coldhearted violent act and provides justice for our victim,” the office said in a statement. Howard had been charged with attempted murder, conspiracy to commit a robbery and assault with a semiautomatic firearm.
Children around the world received some good news, with officials from the North Pole confirming that Santa’s reindeer have been approved for their Christmas Eve flight, following a health checkup from Santa’s veterinarian. Dr. Lori Teller, president of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), flew to the North Pole earlier this month to ensure that Santa’s team of nine were up-to-date on their vaccinations and travel forms and were healthy enough to make their annual trek around the globe.
“After a full examination and review of their medical records, I’m so excited to report that Santa’s reindeer are healthy, in great shape and ready to fly on Christmas Eve,” Dr. Teller said. “In addition, they have their health certificates and certificates of travel and will be ready to come to your house on Christmas Eve—that is, if you’re on the ‘nice list’ this year!”
The reindeer’s annual exam includes a health check about a month prior to their Christmas Eve flight to make sure they’re healthy and not showing any signs of disease—such as brucellosis, tuberculosis or chronic wasting disease—that can affect their ability to fly or make other animals sick. Dr. Teller was accompanied by a certified veterinary technician who assisted with the reindeer examinations.
“We need to make sure the reindeer aren’t harboring any diseases that they could then potentially spread to animals in other parts of the world,” said Dr. Teller. “At the same time, making sure they’re healthy also means that they’re less likely to catch any diseases themselves on that long global flight.”
In addition to presents for children around the world, Santa is required to bring with him an official “North Pole Certificate of Animal Export” that allows him to freely cross borders and ensure health officials that his reindeer pose no threat to animal or public health. Dr. Teller will make a follow-up trip to the North Pole on Christmas Eve to provide a final pre-flight checkup and to inspect the reindeer upon their return on Christmas morning. For kids who want to help the reindeer on their journey, Dr. Teller recommends leaving a plate of graham cracker reindeer cookies, their favorite snack, for Santa to feed them between stops.
Dr. Teller’s work is consistent with the role veterinarians play every day to ensure the health of animals, people and the environment across the globe. Far from just being “dog and cat doctors,” veterinarians work with all kinds of species, in all types of environments, to make the world a healthier place for all forms of life.
While unavailable for comment due to his busy work schedule, Santa issued a statement, saying, “Without my reindeer there simply would be no Christmas. Proper veterinary care ensures that, year in and year out, my team and I are able to deliver presents to boys and girls around the world. Dr. Teller is definitely on the ‘nice list’ again this year.”
AVMA members can visit the AVMA website to download the official E.L.V.E.S. badge. For more information on Dr. Teller’s role as North Pole Veterinarian, including answers to kids’ questions about reindeer, visit avma.org/Santa.
Animal Dermatology Group, Inc. (ADG) congratulates the newest group of veterinarians that have achieved Diplomate status with the American College of Veterinary Dermatology (ACVD), including six members of the ADG medical team. This new contingent of ACVD Diplomates are recognized as specialists in the diagnosis and treatment of chronic dermatological conditions, including benign and malignant disorders of the skin, hair, ears and nails in animals. They join Board-Certified Veterinary Dermatologists practicing in the US and throughout the world.
The ACVD is accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and responsible for maintaining post-graduate training and certification standards for the veterinary dermatology specialty in the United States. It mandates a rigorous curriculum of specialized training for veterinarians seeking to become Board Certified Veterinary Dermatologists. ACVD requirements include a one-year internship, three years of comprehensive clinical study in an ACVD-approved residency program, scholarly publication of original research in veterinary dermatology and the successful completion of the ACVD board certifying examination.
ADG medical team members part of the ACVD's newest class of Diplomates practice across the country, including Dr. Kelsey Milich, of Animal Dermatology Clinic (ADC) Pasadena, CA; Dr. M. Kelly Keating, ADC-Las Vegas, NV; Dr. Melissa Loewinger, ADC-Wayne, NJ; Dr. Henrietta Parnell-Turner, ADC-San Diego, CA; Dr. Katlyn Robertson, ADC-Louisville, KY; and Dr. Marvin Daniel Schuldenfrei, ADC-Portland, OR.
ADG was the first non-academic organization accredited by the ACVD to provide a residency training program and today hosts the largest ACVD residency classes preparing future board certified dermatologists.
"We take great pride in our commitment to the clinical practice of veterinary dermatology as well as the training and development of the next generation of specialists in our field," stated Dr. Rusty Muse, ADG's Medical Director. "We congratulate the new board certified veterinary dermatologists and welcome them to our exciting and deeply rewarding specialty of veterinary medicine."
The Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) outbreak has affected more than 52.4 million domesticated poultry in the United States in 2022, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (USDA APHIS) reports. According to experts at the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future shifting away from industrial models can help to prevent the spread of HPAI. And farmers are seeing that pasture-raised poultry models can help to keep their livestock healthy. The 2022 HPAI outbreak marks the deadliest in U.S. history. Cases reached their peak at 6.15 million in September and dipped in October. The virus saw another uptick in November, with almost 3.7 million cases reported. In response to the HPAI outbreak, the USDA advises flocks with outdoor access, labeled as pasture-raised and free-range, to quarantine as the virus spreads through contact with migratory waterfowl, such as ducks and geese. “Waterfowl have no business anywhere near our chickens,” Reginaldo Haslett-Marroquin, Co-Founder of Regeneration Farms, tells Food Tank. Haslett-Marroquin operates a farm network and nonprofit called The Regenerative Agriculture Alliance, which focuses on scaling up regenerative poultry systems. The Regenerative Agriculture Alliance model utilizes a Tree-Range system in which farmers raise small poultry flocks with native crops such as elderberries and hazelnuts. These Indigenous permaculture methods can prevent water from pooling in areas where the chickens have access, create shelter for chickens, and ensure HPAI-prone waterfowl do not have the opportunity to intermingle with chickens. Haslett-Marroquin tells Food Tank that regenerative, indigenous methods of animal husbandry aren’t too labor-intensive and create ecosystems that prioritize bird health. Farms utilizing a Tree-Range system also follow enhanced biosecurity protocols to have full transparency in case of an outbreak. Domesticated poultry farmed for eggs or meat are always at risk of avian influenza outbreaks, Dr. Jarra Jagne, Associate Professor at Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine and a poultry disease specialist, tells Food Tank. But the severity of outbreaks and virus strains vary. Those designated to be highly pathogenic cause severe disease and high mortality. Mike Badger, Associate Director of the nonprofit American Pastured Poultry Producers Association (APPPA), argues that quarantining poultry during the 2022 HPAI outbreak can create ideal conditions for spreading the virus. Most bird deaths have been from commercial, indoor, densely confined operations, Badger says.
Robert Martin, Program Director of Food System Policy at Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future, adds that confined poultry systems are dangerous for spreading HPAI because the birds are standing in their waste all day. “In a true pasture-based system, birds are healthier and less likely to come into contact” with HPAI-infected waste. While commercial flocks with large numbers of poultry confined in barns have suffered the highest bird losses, Badger attests that as of the peak of the outbreak no members in the 1000-farm APPPA network had tested positive for HPAI. Almost all APPPA members raise poultry on pasture in mobile coops. In this model, birds are moved to fresh pasture often so that the birds don’t come into contact with waste. While HPAI is highly contagious, Badger and Martin note that poultry deaths during the outbreak are not always due to the virus but to the response itself. The USDA requires farmers to cull or depopulate via slaughter all infected poultry to prevent a future spread. Martin adds, “in an industrial system, the only way to control [HPAI] is through extreme measures.” Badger theorizes that the APPPA model is beneficial in cases of disease outbreaks because the birds are “developing their immune systems in ways that confined birds are not.” In addition, research published in Frontiers in Animal Science finds that environmental enrichment, such as access to mature grasses, can improve the immune functioning of broiler chickens.
Similarly, by creating diverse permaculture ecosystems for poultry, Haslett-Marroquin and The Regenerative Agriculture Alliance are achieving more transparent supply chains, healthier chickens, and more resilient farmer enterprises. Martin advocates for long-term policy solutions that include decentralized poultry production models and smaller, pasture-based flocks, noting that “getting away from the industrial model” is the most effective way to reduce future poultry disease outbreaks.
James Cameron's ticking off animal welfare activists by promoting his ocean-themed epic, "Avatar: The Way of Water," with a dolphin show many see as, at least ironic, and definitely cruel.
The director sat alongside stars Zoe Saldaña, Sam Worthington, Sigourney Weaver and others in Japan to promote the much-anticipated sequel -- he kicked off the press conference by saying, "Welcome to Pandora" ... and then the controversial show began.
The dolphins in a tank performed tricks with the help of trainers ... and as the conference continued, Cameron mentioned how much he loved a dolphin's intelligence and sociability ... before joking, "I'm sure everybody asked their permission to be in the show."
That joke did not land with animal activist groups like PETA -- because its spokesperson told Plant Based News, "Why on Earth didn't [Cameron] pause for just five minutes to consider whether he should have allowed himself to be seen as endorsing the cruelty of marine parks?"
Shockingly, Cameron's been an animal advocate for years ... he says he's been a vegan for a decade, and even worked on the 2009 flick, "The Cove," the Oscar-winning animal rights film that exposed the cruelty of dolphin hunting in Japan, of all places.Even "The Cove" director, Richard O'Barry, is calling out Cameron for his hypocrisy in using captive dolphins to promote a film whose central plot is about conserving ocean resources.
A little more CGI could've gone a long way in helping James dodge this bullet.
Ashley Spielmann's dog may look grumpy most of the year, but especially at Christmas.
Her miniature schnauzer, Rizzo, took on one of the season's most notorious characters this year, thanks to his groomer.
"This is the first Christmas we've had with him," Spielmann told WIFR. "I was like, 'hey, can we turn Rizzo into the Grinch?' And she was like, yeah, I'll order the dye."
Spielmann posted a video of Rizzo's Grinch-like look on TikTok and it earned nearly 1 million likes.
"You don't really think like wow it's going to blow up go on all these different news stations," she said.
Most viewers appreciated Rizzo's holiday makeover.
"Somebody on Tiktok that reached out and she said when she saw this video, she was actually undergoing radiation," Spielmann said. "She's like, 'one of the hardest things for me and I'm going through and your dog just made my day.'"
However, some people who viewed the video weren't so amused.
"People were saying, 'oh well he looks sad' and well, he's a schnauzer," said Hailey Degner, Rizzo's groomer.
Some comments raised concerns about animal abuse, but Degner said the green dye she used on Rizzo is pet-safe hair color that is vegan and non-toxic.
Columbus Animal Care Services (CACS) is inviting community members to “Bring Christmas to the Animals” and learn about adopting, fostering, and volunteering opportunities at an open house this Sunday, December 18, from 1 to 4 p.m., at Columbus Animal Care Services Center, 2730 Arnold Dr., in Columbus, Indiana.
More than 35 dogs and nearly 45 cats available for adoption or in need of foster homes are staying at CACS this holiday season. The “Bring Christmas to the Animals” open house gives residents a chance to donate gifts that will improve the pets’ stay at the shelter.
Donation items needed include cat, kitten, and dog food, bleach, paper towels, pet toys, and treats.
Short-term and long-term fostering opportunities are available. Other volunteer services needed include walking the dogs at the shelter, socializing with the cats at the shelter, cleaning up after the pets, and driving them to veterinarian appointments.
This and many other shelters across America can use your help at Christmas and beyond.
With the holidays rapidly approaching, one Chatham, NC resident is urging residents to think carefully about gifting their loved ones a new, furry best friend. Rev. Terry Dorsey — one of the founding members of Guardians of Angels (now Team GOA) — said as an animal activist in Chatham County, he warns his fellow Chathamites not to gift their family or friends a pet this holiday season, as a lot of them will most likely end up back at the shelter.
“I cringe when I think of Christmas because a lot of people are going to just get puppies and kittens, and they have no idea of the chewing and the pooing that goes on,” Dorsey said. “They don’t think that through unless they’ve had pets themselves.”
Those animals who often become the stars of viral Christmas present reveals are often surrendered to shelters after the holiday season. Shelters across the U.S. have reported that one in 10 animals surrendered in the first half of the year were “present pets,” which takes a toll on resources.
“Puppies and kittens are cute, but very often kids and families don’t know what the full mount of responsibility is,” Dorsey said. “So after a few weeks, they just take them to the shelter, and now, the shelters are pretty full already.”
Dorsey — who in the past has rescued dumped stray cats and had them spayed or neutered — said with the work he’s done, he has already seen an increase in abandoned animals leading up to the holiday season. One of the reasons some people surrender their beloved pets is due to the costs of healthcare, specifically the cost of spaying or neutering an animal. Dorsey said the county has a solution to that — a low-cost spay/neuter voucher.
If the low-cost spay/neuter vouchers are still not enough for an individual to afford their pet, Dorsey said it’s best to return the animal to a shelter, instead of leaving the pet behind.
“Abandoning an animal is a Class B misdemeanor — it’s against the law to do it, but people are doing it all over the county, especially in Siler City,” Dorsey said. “Until towns work with the county to start addressing that issue, it’s going to continue to be one.” He said when parents are considering giving their children a cat or dog this holiday season, they should consider offering to have a conversation about responsibility first.
“They can consider [placing] a card under the tree saying they’re going to go to the shelter and get a puppy, but first they’re going to talk about what that means, making sure that the kid is ready,” Dorsey said.
Pet ownership is one of the largest forms of responsibility for a child, according to Dorsey, so having a conversation about the chores that come with a pet is crucial before one is brought home. “One thing is just to prepare kids for what pet ownership means, and then the other is to have a family go to the shelter, maybe even together to pick out an animal,” Dorsey said. “Make sure that the kid is ready because every kid says they’ll take care of them but never does so.”