- 1. Can Cats and Dogs Catch Swine Flu?
- 2. Fall in Love: Enter the ASPCA Adopt-A-Shelter Dog Photo Contest
- 3. ASPCA Pet of the Week: See Bobby Run!
- 4. Winners of Dog Days of Summer Video Contest Announced
- 5. Severe Neglect of Kittens Leads to Brooklyn Man’s Arrest
- 6. Autumn Events for Big Apple Animal Lovers
- 7. ASPCA Happy Tails: Living the High Life
1. Can Cats and Dogs Catch Swine Flu?
Pet parents of dogs and cats can relax for now, say ASPCA veterinarians. While the 2009 H1N1 virusa faster moving and possibly more debilitating strain of influenza than the typical seasonal fluhas become an international concern, the virus, referred to as swine flu when first identified, appears to present little risk of infecting dogs and cats. However, viruses can mutate quickly and taking important preventative measures remains essential.
“Many species can become infected with influenza viruses, but the current 2009 H1N1 virus, which is a mixture of genetic material from different species, has not been identified in animal populations in the United States to date,” says Dr. Miranda Spindel, Director of ASPCA Veterinary Outreach. “These viruses are notoriously unpredictable, though, and it is important that we remain vigilant.”
In terms of other animals who are susceptible, Dr. Spindel warns that influenza or flu viruses are occasionally transmitted from people to pigs, and the 2009 H1N1 virus has also been identified in turkeys. Pet parents of Vietnamese Potbellies, African Pygmies and other pet pigs should monitor their animals' health closely, notify their veterinarian of any signs of illness and speak to their veterinarian about influenza type A vaccines. And ferrets are susceptible to most human flu viruses, so pet parents should take extra care to prevent exposure of pet ferrets to people or other ferrets with flu symptoms.
Meanwhile, flu season is upon us and pet parents should take common-sense preventative measures to keep their dogs and cats healthy:
If your dog is exhibiting flu-like symptoms, including coughing, nasal discharge or fever (normal dog and cat temperature is 101 to 102.5 degrees), play it safe and avoid taking him to places like dog parks, where he can pass on germs or come into contact with unvaccinated or sick dogs.
Avoid letting your cat roam freely outside.
If your dog comes into frequent contact with other dogs or is kept in a kennel, the ASPCA recommends that you discuss with your veterinarian whether vaccination against canine influenza may be appropriate. Note: canine influenza and H1N1 are not the same virus.
Talk to your vet about what flu vaccines are currently available, and be sure all your pets get vaccinated!
Don't let your pet share water bowls, food dishes or toys with other animals.
Make sure your pet is eating, drinking and playing as he normally does each day. If you notice your pet behaving unusually, or if he has flu-like symptoms, check in with your veterinarian immediately.
Read the ASPCA's official statement on swine flu.
Do you Twitter? Use this hashtag to tweet on this article: @aspca and #PetsandSwineFlu
2. Fall in Love: Enter the ASPCA Adopt-A-Shelter Dog Photo Contest
Who is your dog in love withbesides you, that is? Perhaps he makes googly eyes at your neighbor’s cat or tools around with your guinea pig? Maybe playing with your bird or grazing with your horse tickles his fancy. Whoever your pooch pals around with, we want to see them in action!
This October, for the ASPCA's Adopt-A-Shelter Dog photo contest, catch your pooch indulging in cuddly interspecies affection. The top five winnersselected by ASPCA staffwill receive an ASPCA Prize Pack and be featured on our website. So get clicking, shutterbugsthe deadline for entries is October 31! Click here for rules and to enter.
Do you Twitter? Use this hashtag to tweet on this article: @aspca and #DogsinLovePhotoContest
3. ASPCA Pet of the Week: See Bobby Run!
Bobby is young, smart and handsomewhat else could you need? Okay, there is one more thing: this mischievous, one-year-old Pit Bull mix gets along with kids, as long as they don’t mind his high-energy style, and loves to run and play! Too good to be true? Not even close, but Bobby does need someone who will help him mind his Ps and Qs, and teach him some basic manners, such as when to say when.
So throw on those kicks and sprint on over here! Bobby’s definitely not going to wait around for slowpokes. If you’re interested in adopting, please call our Animal Placement department at (212) 876-7700, ext. 4120. Or to view other animals looking for homes, visit our Adoption Center online.
****Got Facebook? Won’t you please donate your status to Bobby today? Just copy and paste the following message onto your profile status to help spread the word that this pooch needs a home!
[Name] is donating my status to Bobby http://www.aspca.org/bobby, a dog at the ASPCA who needs a new home.
Do you Twitter? Use this hashtag to tweet on this article: @aspca and #KidBobby
4. Winners of Dog Days of Summer Video Contest Announced
October has arrived, and as promised, it’s time to reveal the winner of the ASPCA’s Dog Days of Summer Video Contest.
Top Dog honors go to Taj the Pug, who swept the contest with his Oscar-caliber acting chops and his movie’s twist ending. Taj and his pet parent will receive an ASPCA goodie pack, as will the two runners-up, Caius and Abby. Congratulations to all!
This one was all about you guysyou supplied the videos and the votesso thanks for making our summer contest a success! In case you missed them, you can still watch these cinematic masterpieces on our website for a few more months. View now.
Do you Twitter? Use this hashtag to tweet on this article: @aspca and #DogVideoContest
5. Severe Neglect of Kittens Leads to Brooklyn Man’s Arrest
In late August, ASPCA Humane Law Enforcement (HLE) received a tip that several cats in a Brooklyn, NY, home were in need of medical attention. HLE Special Investigator Diane DiGiacomo visited the home, where resident Richard Manmarino cooperated by bringing all five of his catstwo adults and three kittensto the front door for visual inspection. While the adult cats appeared to be in decent health, the kittens were all severely dehydrated, emaciated and infested with fleas. After Manmarino agreed to sign custody of the kittens over to the ASPCA, Agent DiGiacomo immediately brought them to the ASPCA Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital for medical evaluations.
ASPCA veterinarians rated the sick, underweight kittens “4”s on a condition-rating scale of 1 to 5, 1 being the best (healthy) and 5 being the worst (critical). Among other treatments, all three received life-saving blood transfusions to treat blood loss anemia, a dangerous condition that was the result of having been fed on by fleas. Named Sunny, Vaughn and Klaus by hospital staff, the 5-month-old kittens are now on the road to recovery and are expected to soon be made available for adoption.
Without medical care, the kittens would have diedand failure to provide adequate veterinary care can be a cruelty offense in New York State. On September 19, Manmarino was arrested and charged with three counts of misdemeanor animal cruelty. If convicted, he could be fined and sentenced to up to two years in jail.
If you know of an animal whose health is being compromised by neglect, please report it. Visit our Report Cruelty FAQ to learn how to report cruelty in your neighborhood.
Do you Twitter? Use this hashtag to tweet on this article: @aspca and #KittenArrest
6. Autumn Events for Big Apple Animal Lovers
2009 Young Friends Benefit: “It’s Raining Shelter Cats & Dogs!”
You’re invited to an evening of cocktails, dancing & silent auction at the 2009 ASPCA Young Friends Benefit, held each year to inspire young professionals to make a difference in the lives of animals through social, educational and philanthropic change.
When: Thursday, October 8, 9:00 P.M. to 1:00 A.M.
Where: The IAC Building, 555 W 18th St., NY, NY
Purchase Tickets: Contact the ASPCA Special Events department at (212) 876- 7700, ext. 4652, or visit our event website.
Space is limited, so reserve your tickets ASAP!
Delta Society Classes
Want your pet to help out in schools, hospitals and homes for the elderly? Check out two new classes to get them started:
Go Say Hi: Teaching You and Your Dog to Help Others
This seven-week class will help prepare you and your dog for the Delta Society Evaluation. Prerequisite: Dogs must have knowledge of basic obedience skills.
When: Saturdays, October 10 through November 14, 9:00 A.M. to 10:00 A.M. and 10:15 A.M. to 11:15 A.M.
Where: ASPCA Headquarters 2nd Floor Training Center at 424 E 92nd St. (between 1st and York Aves.), NYC
Cost: $290.00, which includes the Delta Society Team Training Manual and evaluation.
Register Online Now for 9:00 A.M. to 10:00 A.M.
Register Online Now for 10:15 A.M. to 11:15 A.M.
Walk With Me: Skills for Success
This six-week class covers basic therapy dog obedience skills, such as Sit, Down, Stay, Walk With Me and Come. The class is open to puppies at least three months old and people- and dog-friendly dogs.
When: Saturdays, October 10 through November 14, 11:30 A.M. to 12:30 P.M.
Where: ASPCA Headquarters 2nd Floor Training Center at 424 E 92nd St. (bet. 1st and York Aves.), NYC
Register Online Now!
Do you Twitter? Use this hashtag to tweet on this article: @aspca and #AutumnEvents
7. ASPCA Happy Tails: Living the High Life
From the mean streets of NYC to a leafy Connecticut town, one dog’s journey is a truly happy tale of pooch victim turned beloved family member. In the spring of 2008, the ASPCA received an anonymous tip from a caller who had seen several neglected dogs in Staten Island, NY. When our Humane Law Enforcement Agents investigated the report, they made a terrible discoverydogs left for days in outdoor crates without food and water. The dogs’ temporary caretaker voluntarily relinquished one of the dogswhose rightful owner had recently been incarceratedto the ASPCA. The young Pit Bull, whom the ASPCA named Smoke, was malnourished and suffering from a neck wound.
The energetic pooch initially had a tough time putting his troubled past behind him, but after more than a year of rest, relaxation and compassionate care, Smoke emerged as one of the most popular and active dogs in our shelter. A true champ, he was a workout king who loved to chase tennis balls and run around with volunteers. Deemed a “charmer” by ASPCA Manager of Shelter Behavior and Training Victoria Wells, it was no surprise that potential adopter Camille Fleetwood of New Milford, CT, saw something special in Smoke’s soulful gaze.
“I had originally seen Smoke on the ASPCA website in early August and thought he looked sad in his picture,” says Camille. She was intrigued, and eventually made the trip to the ASPCA in Manhattan to meet the dog. One seamless adoption later, Smoke is happily nestled in his fabulous New England life.
“Smoke has settled in nicely,” Camille reports. “He still gets spooked occasionally, but he’s adapted very well and is comfortable in his new surroundings. He has met a lot of our neighbors and seems to be a real people dog!”
Thanks to the kindness of his new family, Smoke finally feels secure enough to relax and let down his furry guard. Camille says: “He loves to roll on his back and have his tummy rubbed! He also loves to cuddle and sprawl with his back legs behind him. He sleeps with me on the bed and pulls the covers over himself with his mouth!”
She adds: “Smoke means the world to us, and we are so glad to have him. We feel blessed to have such a magnificent dog and so happy that we were able to give him a good, loving home.”
Do you Twitter? Use this hashtag to tweet on this article: @aspca and #SmokeCharmer