- 1. ASPCA Provides Critical Transport for Animals in Wake of Kentucky Floods
- 2. ASPCA Happy Tails: Three Little Kittens
- 3. Meet the $100K Challenge Contestants: Part Five
- 4. Is Your Dog Afraid of Thunderstorms?
1. ASPCA Provides Critical Transport for Animals in Wake of Kentucky Floods
On July 20, after violent storms displaced thousands of families and companion animals, the ASPCA Field Investigations and Response Team arrived at the Pike County Animal Shelterin Pikeville, KY, to provide emergency transport and placement for more than 100 homeless animals. Over a two-day period, the animals were safely transported in the ASPCA's custom-built animal transport trailer to various ASPCA Shelter Response Partners around the country.
"Pets have been displaced just as people have," says Brandon Roberts of the Pike County Judge Executive's Office. "The ASPCA transfer of non-owned animals has allowed the Pike County Animal Shelter to accept pets from families who were forced to evacuate their homes." The shelter will hold the displaced pets until their families can accommodate them—there will not be a charge for the emergency boarding.
"Our team has the capability of responding to emergency situations across the country, and we will continue to provide supplies and support animals in Pike County as long as we're needed," says Kyle Held, the ASPCA Midwest Director of Field Investigations and Response.
Organizations that stepped forward to support the ASPCA's relief efforts and provide housing for the pets in need include: Capital Area Humane Society in Columbus, OH; Humane Society of Berks County in Reading, PA; Noah's Ark Animal Welfare Association in Ledgewood, NJ; Nashville Humane Association in Nashville, TN; and Elk County Humane Society in St. Mary's, PA.
"My hope is to get these animals into the great homes they deserve," says JoAnne Smith, Director and Humane Officer for the Elk County Humane Society. Just last month, the ASPCA assisted Elk County Humane Society with the removal of nearly 400 cats from an overwhelmed local animal rescue.
Stay tuned to ASPCA.org for more details on this developing story.
2. ASPCA Happy Tails: Three Little Kittens
Sometimes we like to shake things up here at Happy Tails HQ and feature adoption stories from beyond our hometown of NYC. This week, we’re bringing the cuteness with a true story straight from the great state of Illinois. It stars three little kittens, Sano, Kenshin and Tomoe, and their devoted pet parent, Gerardine Baugh.
On February 13, my husband Michael announced we were going for a ride, but refused to tell me where we were going. It was a beautiful, sunny day, and he drove us out into the country. Eventually, we arrived at TAILS Humane Society in Dekalb, IL. We were adopting a kitty companion for one of our most sociable cats, Kenshin. Happy Valentine’s Day!
Sanosukealso known as Sanobecame a family member right from the moment we held him. Now he follows my husband around, searches for him when he wakes up, and loves kisses and hugs. When he plays, he wraps his paws around the other cats’ bodies and doesn’t let go. He watches the older cats and imitates them, even how they sleep.
Kenshin and Tomoe were also rescue cats from TAILS. My husband, who is disabled and has seizures, calls his kitties his best friends. They watch television with him and sit with him when he reads. Tomoe and Kenshin take turns sitting by his side for hours when he isn’t feeling well. Michael’s a complete “softie” at heart, especially when it comes to his family and cats because, well, he is a cat, personality-wise.
To read more heartwarming adoption stories, please visit our ASPCA Happy Tails archive.
3. Meet the $100K Challenge Contestants: Part Five
The ASPCA $100K Challenge, which officially kicks off on Sunday, August 1, is offering $125,000 to shelters across the country to save more cats and dogs! Each week, we’ve been introducing you to our 50 contestantsmeet five more with their eyes on the prize.
Joplin Humane Society, Joplin MO: A professional organization with strategic visioning, Joplin Humane Society would use the $100K grand prize to launch and support a spay/neuter clinic.
Team of Geauga Humane Society, Russell Twp., OH, & Lake Humane Society, Mentor, OH: “As a two-shelter team, the sum is larger and stronger than the parts,” says this Ohio alliance. “We have tons of heart and, as underdogs, we will capture people’s imaginations. We work our tails off!”
Larimer Humane Society, Fort Collins, CO: This 41-year-old organization is not messing around: it has formed a committee dedicated to the ASPCA $100K Challenge comprised of staff, volunteers, board members and interested members of the community to “ensure an imminent win!”
Prattville/Autauga Humane Society, Prattville, AL: If it wins the grand prize, this small, caring shelter would “update our plumbing, computer network and other things we have ignored in order to put our money into the animals.”
St. Tammany Parish Department of Animal Services, Lacombe, LA: Funded by the St. Tammany Parish government, this group houses and cares for stray and unwanted animals in the parish and also battles the area’s cruelty cases. Its staff describes themselves as “determined, motivated, skilled and committed.”
Rooting for any of the shelters featured here? Show your support by sharing this page on your Facebook profile (click the Facebook Share icon at the top right of this page) or hitting the “Tweet this Article” link below. Just a click can get the word out quick!
4. Is Your Dog Afraid of Thunderstorms?
Picture this: As the skies darken overhead, an otherwise amiable dog is panting and pacing around the house with his tail tucked between his legs. When the first crash of thunder hits, he bolts into the bathroom and curls up tightly in the tub, where he remains, panting and trembling, until the storm passes. Sound familiar? Does your dog behave this way during storms? Not to worry, pet parents, the ASPCA has some advice for helping your pooch overcome his fear.
Any dog can develop a fear of thunderstorms, but herding breeds seem more susceptible to developing noise phobias. Age is another risk factor: Dogs who are afraid of thunderstorms can become more distressed with each successive season, so it’s smart to start working with your dog as soon as you notice his fearful behavior. If your adult dog has suddenly become afraid of storms, please start with a visit to your vet. A sick dog may become more sensitive to sounds, and no amount of behavior modification will help if your dog’s fear is medically based.
Try the following strategies to reduce your dog’s anxiety during storms. For dogs with mild thunderstorm phobia, these tricks may get rid of the problem entirely.
- Let your dog take refuge inside. Storms aren’t as loud and scary with four walls around you! Bringing your dog into the house also ensures that he won’t try to escape from the yard.
- Having some human company often calms panicked dogs. If your calm, quiet touch brings him comfort or if he comes to you for security, it’s perfectly fine to pet and reassure him.
- Try turning on some calming music, a TV or radio, or a fan to muffle storm noises. Shutting the drapes may help if lightning also frightens your dog.
- More active distractions may help, too. See if your dog will eat from a food-filled toy, such as a stuffed Kong, scatter treats in the house for him to find, or try playing tug or fetch with his favorite toy.
If your dog’s quality of life is seriously impaired by thunderstorms, consider speaking with a vet about anti-anxiety medication. Medication can enhance the effectiveness of other efforts to help your dog cope with his fear. A technique called desensitization and counterconditioning can also help. This technique involves gradually increasing the volume of an audio recording of a thunderstorm to help your dog become accustomed to it, while at the same time associating the sound of thunder with good things, like treats and toys. Additionally, there are a number of products on the market that may help your dog remain calm during storms, including close-fitting body wraps, noise-reducing headphones and herbal remedies.
Help is just around the corner! Please visit the ASPCA’s Virtual Behaviorist for more advice and useful resources.