I was talking to my friend and trainer Christopher Lane, and he told me about the 10K happening in Brooklyn. At first I was skeptical, but then I was told I could be a part of Team ASPCA, and that sealed the deal.
Three years ago, on June 13, to be exact, I adopted Clementine from a shelter in Atlanta. Clementine is some kind of doodle. We aren't exactly sure. My friends call her a floppity muppet. I call her the best decision I have ever made. So I'm running for the ASPCA to spread the word that adoption is an amazing option, and it’s personally enriched my life beyond words.
Training for race has been slow and steady. Christopher knows that I get overwhelmed when thinking about the full six miles. He set a slow and easy training plan for me to follow. I started by just run/walking 10 minutes down the road, then turning around and running 10 minutes home. I did this for the first couple of weeks, I progressed to 15 min each way, and then 20. I eventually felt comfortable running for a full hour. I like to train outside, but if I'm forced to run on a treadmill, I like to break it up. I run 10 minute intervals, then walk some and run 10 again.
For me, it's not about competition. It's not about speed. It's about getting out there, getting my body moving, and being a part of a great cause. So, just to be clear, I won't be winning the 10K, but I will finish! If I can share with everyone what a blessing adopting my sweet Clementine has been, it will all be worth it.
October is Adopt a Shelter Dog Month, and just in case you didn’t already know, we LOVE shelter dogs! This month celebrate your rescued pooches by posting their cutest pics on Instagram with the hashtag #ShelterDogsRock!
Not only will your photo will be showcased on Instagram, but we’ll also feature it in a special tab on our Facebook page! On October 31, we’ll choose our favorite shelter pup photo (never an easy task) and announce the winner on November 1.
What does the winner get? You’ll receive an ASPCA “I Love My Shelter Dog” jumbo tote full of delicious Walkers Shortbread Cookies (yep, those yummy, doggie-shaped butter cookies!).
So grab your phone, grab a photo, and show us your dog’s good side—and don’t forget to use the hashtag #ShelterDogsRock!
Jennifer Leary is a Philadelphia firefighter, the coordinator for the Philadelphia County Animal Response Team and founder of the Red Paw Emergency Relief Team.
In 1999, Hurricane Floyd claimed the lives of millions of animals, and thousands more were separated from their families. Many of these animals would have been saved if a pet-friendly coordinated response plan had been in effect. When Hurricanes Irene and Sandy struck, we saw that many counties had incorporated co-located pet shelters into their evacuation plans, but most people don’t know the amount of planning it takes to make this happen.
When a co-located pet shelter is developed, there are things an emergency planning committee needs to take into account:
The area where the animals are contained needs to be away from general population, but close enough so that the families can come by and care for their pets
There needs to be safe, outdoor access for dogs
A good source of ventilation is vital
The area needs to be pet-proofed and safe for all pets
As a volunteer for the Red Cross, I was assigned to a co-located pet shelter during Hurricanes Irene and Sandy. When a member of the community came to the shelter with their pet, the individual was greeted by a Red Cross volunteer who directed them to the temporary pet shelter. At pet check-in, a photo was taken of the family with their pet; along with proper paperwork, this helped maintain proof of ownership of the animal. The photo was also used to create special ID bracelets that were used as a visitor’s pass.
Emergencies come in many forms, and they may require anything from a brief absence from your home to permanent evacuation. Knowing their beloved pet has access to a safe haven helps families deal with the emotional tragedy of being forced out of their home.
“I am interested in long-term humane solutions to manage our horse populations. Our land is precious to the Navajo people as are all the horses on the Navajo Nation. Horses are sacred animals to us.” – Ben Shelly, president of the Navajo Nation
Phenomenal news! Horse-welfare advocates just gained an important new ally in the fight to stop the brutal practice of horse slaughter. As reported earlier this week in TheNew York Times, Ben Shelly, president of the Navajo Nation, announced that the Nation opposes the practice of horse slaughter and has stopped all horse round-ups on the reservation.
This statement follows two important developments for horses on Navajo lands. In September, a coalition of Navajo elders and medicine people passed a resolution to oppose horse slaughter, and a Navajo Nation chapter opted to suspend round-ups in its territory for fear the horses would be sent to slaughter.
The ASPCA applauds President Shelly’s announcement, which underscores the fact that the inherently cruel practice of horse slaughter is never an acceptable end for a horse.
President Shelly’s message on behalf of the Navajo Nation confirms the building momentum for the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act, which would forbid the slaughter of horses in the U.S. and end the current export of American horses for slaughter abroad.
Diane R. shared her story with us about a spontaneous trip to the ASPCA Adoption Center that resulted in bringing home a new furry friend named Bubba. Bubba has quite the personality and always keeps Diane on her toes.
I had two cats that I brought with me when I moved to New York City. They both passed away, and I knew that one day I would welcome another furry friend into my life when the time was right.
I heard there was a rescue facility somewhere near me on the Upper East Side. One July afternoon, I decided to get some fresh air and run errands. As I walked down Second Avenue, I saw a poster for the ASPCA on the side of a bus stop. Then, as I was about to check in on Foursquare at a grocery store, the first address that came up was for the ASPCA. I took the hint and headed there.
The entire staff was patient, helpful, kind and professional. In the third room I visited, I met one slightly shy guy, Bubba. He had the sweetest face and as I tried to pet him, he swatted me. I loved that! My previous boy cat had the same feisty swagger.
I met many amazing cats, but on the way out, I had to see Bubba one more time. When we opened the door, Bubba zoomed out as though to say, “Let's go already!" Now I was sure—he was my guy.
I tried to set him up in the bathroom to start, as the Adoptions staff suggested, but Bubba had his own agenda. He wanted to be where I was, so I set up a blanket on my living room floor. During Bubba's first days at home he slept, ate and played a lot! He explored my entire apartment.
Bubba has a vibrant and curious personality and cracks me up on a daily basis. He is so sweet, and welcomes me home with the most perfect tiny meow. I cannot thank the ASPCA enough for the gift of allowing me to adopt Bubba! He has made me smile, laugh out loud, and has filled my heart since I brought him home.