Summer travel season is in full swing, and we think trips are always more fun when you bring your furry friends along. If you’re planning to take a vacation this summer with your pets in tow, we’ve got you covered.
Practice makes perfect: It’s a good idea to practice having your pet ride along for a series of short car trips leading up to your big trip.
Ride safely: Keep your pets safe and secure in the car by having them ride in a well-ventilated crate or carrier. The crate should be large enough for your pet to stand, sit, lie down and turn around in. Secure your pet’s crate so it will not slide or shift in the event of an abrupt stop.
Road trip snacks: Be sure to pack plenty of water, and avoid feeding your pet in a moving vehicle. Your pet's travel-feeding schedule should start with a light meal three to four hours prior to departure.
Unless your furry friend is small enough to ride under your seat on a plane, the ASPCA advises avoiding air travel with pets. However, if you must bring your pet along on your flight, it’s best to plan ahead. We recommend you book a direct flight if possible. Here are a few other suggestions:
Careful with crates: Prior to your trip, purchase a USDA-approved shipping crate that is large enough for your pet to stand, sit and turn around in comfortably.
IDs, please: Be sure to mark the crate with the words “Live Animal,” as well as your contact information and a photo of your pet. Make sure all vaccinations are up-to-date and that your pet has been microchipped for identification purposes.
In-flight food: Attach a pouch of your pet’s food to the outside of her crate, and freeze water in a dish for your pet to drink as it melts throughout the flight.
King, the one-year-old male feline who survived a vicious kick in Brooklyn, was adopted by Chris Scordo of Manhattan, who by chance saw a recent story about him in the Daily News.
“I went to a diner for breakfast [June 8] and someone had left their Daily News behind,” explains Chris. “In the paper was a photo of this really handsome cat. I remembered seeing the earlier headline about him and thought the paper had been sitting around for a long time. I was sure the adoption was over. Then I saw the [paper’s publication] date and headed to the ASPCA.”
King, who suffered tissue injuries and bruising, was brought to the ASPCA’s Animal Hospital on May 7 by NYPD officers after being located and trapped by representatives of various animal welfare organizations, including the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals.
Chris, whose 20-year-old calico named Chandler had died six weeks earlier from cancer, had thought about getting another cat.
“I didn’t think I could replace her so soon, but I had a feeling when I saw King’s photograph,” he says. “He has a very expressive face—very bright-eyed. I liked him before I even met him.”
To Chris’ surprise, he was the first to arrive at the ASPCA and get the chance to interact with King. He met with Adi Hovav, a feline behavior counselor, who green-lighted the adoption after speaking at length with the life-long animal lover who has a soft spot for felines.
“I stayed up the whole night that first night—King needs a lot of engagement!” exclaims Chris, who works in the IT field, and often from home. “He acclimated right away after hiding for only an hour or so, and has been playing and exploring ever since. He’s a fun cat—and a bit of a tough guy. I suppose that’s how he survived.”
After first hearing King’s story, Chris was reluctant to watch the disturbing video (which immediately went viral) of King’s abuse, but did so after adopting him. “I felt like I had to witness what happened, he says. “That guy not only betrayed King’s trust, but what bothered me even more was that people were laughing. They should be held accountable, too.”
Despite his ordeal, King remains trusting and positive—“a real New Yorker,” according to Chris. King has taken to being held and is becoming more affectionate. “He was startled at first, but he now lets me hold him for short amounts of time,” Chris reports. The feisty feline also loves munching meatballs. “Maybe he’s part Italian?” Chris jokes.
As for King’s name, Chris says he thought about changing it to ‘Milo,’ “after the Greek strongman, or something macho. But he was already a minor celebrity, and I didn’t want to take that away from him.”
“I hope something good comes of this; maybe King can be a symbol of peace,” Chris adds. “I’ve seen the cruelty people can inflict on animals and I know he, like me, would want the laws stiffened.”
Chris promises to give King the best life he can. “I was amazed at how many people were involved in finding him and caring for him,” he says. “He’ll never suffer again. He’ll have a heated bed in the winter, the best food and medical care, all the toys he wants, and plenty of love and affection.”
In other words, a life fit for a king.
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In honor of Lil BUB’s third birthday this Saturday, we’d like to share another story about how Lil BUB’s Big FUND for the ASPCAhelps special needs cats across the country. Our grant to Tabby’s Place in Ringoes, New Jersey came just in time to help an amazing cat named Casper.
Sweet kitty Casper was born to a feral mom and was part of a well cared-for outdoor cat community. When he failed to show up for breakfast one February morning, his caretakers feared the worst. They searched for him and found poor Casper paralyzed, unable to even lift his head. He was rushed to an emergency vet, where it was determined that Casper’s paralysis wasn’t caused by trauma, but rather something in his spine.
Due to the location of that “something,” a biopsy would have been too risky, but neurologists were sadly confident that the problem was caused by spinal cancer. Despite this often fatal diagnosis, a cat sanctuary called Tabby’s Place in New Jersey took Casper in and started a variety of treatments to help him. Under the care of their veterinary team, he received physical therapy, steroid treatment, acupuncture, pain medication and antibiotics in case his condition had been caused by an infection.
With a lot of love and hard work, Casper slowly began his miraculous recovery. First he lifted his head, then sat up straight, then moved one leg after another. One day, beyond the wildest dreams of the Tabby’s Place team, he walked. Now this brave cat steps confidently around their lobby all day in search of affection and tasty treats. He’s even taken on new challenges, like jumping onto a cat-sized couch!
While some may have given up hope in light of Casper’s case, Tabby’s Place truly gave this cat a second chance at life. Development Director Angela Townsend tells us that volunteers of all ages love to curl up across from him and gaze into his gentle eyes. We’re glad we can help special needs pets receive the specialized care they need to live happy lives. As Angela puts it, “In all he does, Casper makes it clear that he was built to last—and to love. “
Your pooch might not get a whole lot of work done (and will almost certainly forget to put a coversheet on those TPS reports), but evidence suggests that workplaces that allow pets have happier, healthier employees. So get your boss’s okay, check out our office etiquette tips for dogs, and make sure your dog is well-rested for a busy day of water-cooler gossip and inter-departmental meetings…with other dogs!
We hope you and your pup will participate in this Friday’s fur-fest—and if you do, snap plenty of photos because we’d love to see them. Tweet us your pictures @ASPCA using the hashtag #takeyourdog, and we’ll share our favorites.
This spring, more than 80 equine rescue groups held events across 32 states in conjunction with the ASPCA Help a Horse Day Celebration Contest on April 26. Contestants were judged on the creativity of their events, as well as success engaging their local communities. Today, we are excited to announce the winners of the Help a Horse Day Contest, each of which will receive $10,000 in ASPCA grant funding to support their work for horses:
Begin Again Horse Rescue of Lima, New York
EARTHEART of Southern California
Equine Outreach of Bend, Oregon
Mylestone Equine Rescue of Phillipsburg, New Jersey