What better way to kick off the New Year than by joining the ASPCA. The truth is we need you on our team. While 2011 was a great year for helping animals, sadly our work is far from over. Puppy mill cruelty still exists, dog fighting still prevails, and there are still millions of animals sitting in shelters across America.
Now more than ever animals are counting on us to work together.
As an ASPCA Guardian, you’ll help us directly impact the lives of millions of animals across the country. From puppy mill raids to rescuing animal victims of natural disasters, you’ll be right there with us on the frontlines.
Sure, we did great work in 2011. But for just 60¢ a day, you can become an ASPCA Guardian—and together we will make 2012 even better!
It’s been a long time since sweet hound mix Chrissy came to us. A staff favorite, she is the total doggy package: loyal, fun-loving and affectionate. Yet, adopters consistently pass her by. And it’s no joke that Chrissy gets a little down each time she watches one of her shelter friends find a family and leave her behind.
So, what gives?
To find out, we asked some of the people who know her best: Robin and Trevor, ASPCA Animal Care Technicians who spend tons of time with Chrissy each day. We asked them, if you guys could choose an ideal home for Chrissy, what would it be like? “It would be in Vermont,” Trevor joked, explaining that Chrissy gets spooked by city sounds and needs to live in a rural or suburban area.
Trevor continued: “She should live with people who understand that it’s going to take time for her to get comfortable in a new place, and will give her lots of love…and rope toys and belly rubs—she loves those. Oh, and a big window to look out of.” Trevor and Robin both pulled out their phones and showed us several photos they’d taken of Chrissy, all featuring her perched at a window and gazing onto the street below.
“Chrissy needs time to warm up,” Robin explained. “So when adopters first meet her, she doesn’t put on a show—she just sits quietly.”
But once you get to know her, she’s an energetic and loving pup. “She likes to rest her head in your lap.” says Robin. “She already knows Sit, Down and sometimes Paw,” laughs Trevor. “She’s just a really good girl.”
Unfortunately, most adopters don’t get to see the “real” Chrissy. And most visitors to our NYC Adoption Center aren’t qualified to take her home—to adopt Chrissy, you’ve got to live in a suburban or rural area in a teens-and-up home, and have some dog experience.
If you’d like to come to Manhattan to meet Chrissy, please call our Animal Placement department in New York City at (212) 876-7700, ext. 4120, between 11:00 A.M. and 7:00 P.M EST (between 11:00 A.M. and 6:00 P.M. on Sundays).
Update: We are happy to report that Chrissy has been transfered to an ASPCA partner shelter located in the lovely Hamptons. There, she will have a much better chance at finding the suburban home of her dreams. We are monitoring her story closely and will keep you updated!
Gesundheit! Humans aren't the only ones sneezing, sniffling and coughing their way through flu season. Canine influenza is a contagious viral infection that can make our beloved pups feel icky, too.
Much like in humans, the disease is spread through the air by sneezing, coughing and respiratory discharges. It is more common in dogs who live in urban settings or come in frequent contact with other dogs—doggie day-care, dog parks, dog shows, etc.
On the bright side, doggy flu is easily treatable with plenty of rest, healthy foods, extra fluids and sometimes additional meds. If you think your pup may be at a higher risk of catching Canine Influenza, the ASPCA recommends talking to your veterinarian about a special vaccine that helps prevent it. For more information, please visit our Canine Influenza fact sheet.
Well, folks, the competition was certainly fierce! The ASPCA Home for the Holidays Photo Contest received nearly 2,000 entries from across the country, and your photos did not disappoint. From kitties napping under the tree to pups cuddling up by the fire, the excellent entries made choosing a favorite no easy task. But many of you cast your votes, and five photos emerged victorious.
Ladies and gents, we are proud to present the five winners of the ASPCA Home for the Holidays Photo Contest! (Don’t forget: Each of our top dogs will receive a special ASPCA Holiday Gift Pack.)
A big thank you to everyone who entered—and stay tuned for more exciting ASPCA contests!
When I was in the 7th grade, a group of the cool kids smoked, and one day I decided to join them. It turns out that it wasn’t so easy to pick up a cigarette and start smoking for the first time. While with my friends I didn’t inhale, but not for the lack of trying. That night, I went home to practice and ended up getting sick to my stomach. I never smoked again.
I was lucky that I never got hooked on smoking, because I know that quitting is no easy task for most people. Some surveys state that quitting smoking is the top resolution for Americans this year, but many of those who made the resolution have likely already succumbed to the lure of nicotine.
Sometimes a smoker who can’t quit to improve his or her own health is motivated to do so because he or she wants to protect another person or animal. That was the case with Eddie Lama, a construction contractor from a tough Brooklyn neighborhood who became an impassioned animal activist and whose story was told in the documentary film, The Witness.
Lama had been a 2-pack a day smoker of unfiltered cigarettes for 25 years. He readily admitted that smoking ruled his life and was convinced he would die smoking. His life changed when, one day in his smoke-filled living room, Lama looked at his beloved cat, Moo Moo, and realized that he had to quit smoking for Moo Moo. He explains his epiphany:
This animal had no choice. He couldn’t possibly get up, go to the door, turn the knob and say, ‘Look Eddie, I’m gettin’ outta here—it’s just too much smoke here!’ The sense that I was directly doing harm didn’t sit well with me. . . .That, with the fact that he was sitting right there looking at me. Don’t ask me if this really happened, but I could have sworn he coughed . . .I said, ‘that’s it,’ and the cigarette was extinguished.
Lama was right to worry that his smoking was endangering his cat. By quitting smoking, Lama likely extended the life of his cat as well as his own.
Researchers at Tufts’ School of Veterinary Medicine conducted a study in which they found that cats living in homes with smokers are twice as likely as cats living with non-smokers to acquire feline lymphoma cancer. In homes where the cats were exposed to smoking for five years or more, the cats’ cancer risk tripled, and in homes with two smokers, the cancer risk to the cats quadrupled.
Dogs who live with smokers are much more likely to get nasal cancer and lung cancer, both of which usually have a grim prognosis. Pet birds are hypersensitive to environmental contaminants and can develop pneumonia, lung cancer, and problems with their eyes, skin and heart when exposed to smoke.
It’s not just the inhalation of the smoke that is dangerous to animals. The ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center receives hundreds of calls each year about pets who have been sickened from ingesting cigarette butts or other tobacco products, such as chewing tobacco. A dog who consumes a large amount of cigarette butts or ash can have a grave prognosis, especially if he or she does not receive immediate treatment. Studies have also documented the deaths of pet birds as a result of the consumption of cigarette butts.
There are no ifs, ands, or “butts”—smoking around your pet will endanger him or her. If you can’t quit for your pet’s sake, at least try not to smoke indoors, and always properly dispose of your cigarette butts, even when you are outside.