Last month, the Animal Rescue League (ARL) of Boston and the MSPCA Nevins-Farm rescued 34 miniature horses kept on a small property in West Boylston, Massachusetts. The overwhelmed owner voluntarily surrendered the severely neglected animals after a state veterinarian concluded their basic needs were not being met.
"These horses were extremely malnourished due to an alarmingly high level of intestinal parasites," explains Dr. Martha Smith-Blackmore, director of veterinary medical services at the ARL of Boston. Dr. Smith-Blackmore adds that the horses' hooves were in very poor condition, and that they were also suffering from severe skin infections known as "rain rot" from living outside without shelter.
To help cover the costs of caring for and medically treating the horses, the ASPCA granted $9,000 grant to the ARL of Boston.
The ARL of Boston is happy to report that 17 of the 19 mini horses in its care have been placed in loving, permanent homes. The remaining two minis continue to be cared for by ARL of Boston’s Animal Care and Adoption Center staff in Dedham. Both horses require additional socialization and are growing more confident every day. The ARL of Boston is hoping to place them in permanent homes soon.
"We would like to thank the ASPCA for being there when we needed them," Dr. Smith-Blackmore says. "Their financial support allowed us to focus on these horses' care and rehabilitation by relieving some of the budgetary pressure of such large-scale rescue effort."
Cats may not really have nine lives, but they do usually land on their feet. It’s a smart skill evolved from eons of clambering through trees to dodge predators and hunt for food. But this innate ability makes for some serious worry in the urban world.
Pet parents who live in tall buildings often allow their cats to sun themselves in open windows and on fire escapes, unaware that their felines’ prey drive may lead them to pounce on moving birds or insects. Tragically, falls often result in shattered jaws, punctured lungs, broken limbs—and even death.
While it may sound a bit like urban legend, High-Rise Syndrome is actually a serious problem for cats in the city.During the warmer months, veterinarians at the ASPCA Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital in New York City see approximately three to five cases a week!
Why Take Chances?
The good news is that these falls are 100 percent preventable. Please visit our High-Rise Syndrome FAQ for a complete list of safety measures all feline parents should take.
No, we’re not talking about weeds, folks. Though they are quite the threat to your garden, the dangers we’re talking about are far more hazardous. In fact, they can be downright deadly.
Every year the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) receives tens of thousands of calls involving animal companions who’ve been exposed to common garden hazards, including the following:
Poisonous Plants When designing and planting your green space, keep in mind that many popular outdoor plants—including sago palm, rhododendron and azalea—are very toxic to cats and dogs. Please visit our full list of toxic and non-toxic plants for your garden.
Fertilizer Just like you, plants need food. But pet parents, take care—the fertilizer that keeps our plants healthy and green can wreak havoc on the digestive tracts of our furry friends.
Cocoa Mulch Many gardeners use cocoa bean shells—a by-product of chocolate production—in landscaping. Popular for its attractive odor and color, cocoa mulch can pose serious problems for our canine companions.
Insecticides Like fertilizer, herbicides, insecticide baits, sprays and granules are often necessary to keep our gardens healthy, but their ingredients aren't meant for four-legged consumption. The most dangerous forms of pesticides include snail bait with metaldehyde, fly bait with methomyl, systemic insecticides with the ingredients disyston or disulfoton and most forms of rat poisons.
Have you heard the news? The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is finally planning to crack down on Internet puppy sales! Why, you ask? Well, believe it or not, buying a puppy online is just as bad as buying one from a pet shop—maybe even worse!
Currently, the federal Animal Welfare Act—passed 40 years ago, before the Internet even existed—only requires breeders who sell dogs to pet stores or to puppy brokers to be licensed and inspected by the USDA. The USDA has just released proposed regulatory language to close this loophole.
Don’t Be Fooled! Many puppies sold online come from puppy mills. Most websites that sell puppies online claim to be good dog breeders—they even use fancy terms like “certified kennel”, “AKC-registered”, “pedigree” and “health certified,” and include photos of cute puppies frolicking in ideal settings. The truth is that many of these breeders are really puppy mills in disguise. Trust us, no truly responsible breeder would ever sell their dogs online and have them shipped to your doorstep.
Are you a bargain shopper extraordinaire? If so, have I got an idea for you! How about putting your shopping prowess to the test by purchasing supplies for homeless animals?
Animal shelters and rescue groups often have a need for pet food, toys, pet care supplies (leashes, collars, litter and litter boxes), bedding and operational supplies (cleaning products, garbage bags, newspapers, paper towels and office supplies). The recipient organizations can then use funds that otherwise would have been allocated to supplies for expenses such as veterinary care. Not all of these items always have to be new: Shelters are often very grateful for towels and sheets that are gently used, but clean.
Since organizations have varying needs, it’s always best to check with your local animal shelter or rescue group first to see what types of things they can use. For example, many shelters prefer to give the animals in their care the same food on a regular basis and might not have storage capacity to accept food they do not use, or they might only use environmentally-friendly cleaning products. Often this information is posted on their website, but, if not, a quick phone call can let you know whether the shelter welcomes specific items.
If you are an Extreme Couponer—or a seasoned coupon-clipper—and you decide to use your shopping expertise to help homeless animals, please share your pictures with us! Take photos of your shopping trip, the items you purchased, and the moment you arrived at the animal shelter to present your donation. Submissions will be accepted through this tab on the ASPCA's Facebook page through June 1. We’ll also be taking to our Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest pages, and our blog, to feature how much you’ve donated and show the country your generosity. The top five submissions will receive a special oversized ASPCA shopping tote full of swag.