Patrick, near death
Tinton Falls, NJ – It’s the news that thousands have been anxiously awaiting – the person that starved Patrick to the brink of starvation and subsequently threw his body down a trash chute, has been found.
According to Fox News, Kisha Curtis of Newark, 28, was charged Friday with two counts of abandonment and two counts of failure to provide proper sustenance to the animal.
Curtis is the alleged owner of the emaciated dog that was found by a maintenance worker on March 16 in an apartment complex trash bin.
Patrick was within hours of death at the time that he was discovered – in fact, the photos taken initially look like those of a corpse.
Curtis faces two criminal counts and two civil counts, which could result in up to six months in jail or a $1,000 fine and community service if convicted.
Patrick continues to get stronger with each passing day. The dog has been treated by Garden State Veterinary Specialists and his progress is shared on their Facebook fan page, as well as on his own Facebook page, The Patrick Miracle.
As for Curtis, she claims that she could no longer care for the dog, but denies throwing his body down the trash chute.
As more information becomes available, it will be shared.
Authorities are urging anyone with information on the crime to call the NJSPCA tip line at 1-800-582-5979.
Examiner Note: It’s incredible that this woman only faces a meager fine OR a short time in jail for this horrific act of cruelty. Animal cruelty laws need to be improved – slaps on the wrist for such abuse are not sufficient.
Penny Eims, a lifelong animal lover, has dedicated the past 4 years to a large, non-profit dog rescue in Washington. Her experiences include… Read more
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Owning a pet is not just a privilege – it’s a responsibility. These animals depend on us for food and shelter and deserve much more. Bringing home a pet is a serious commitment to caring for and loving one of God’s creatures. Responsible pet ownership begins with doing your research before adoption Millions of pets end up in animal shelters because their owners realize the commitment is too great. Before adopting a pet, make sure your lifestyle permits you to properly care for the pet of your choosing.
The American Kennel Club and its sponsors have named February as Responsible Pet Owners Days. The AKC has written a list of promises for dog owners to agree and adhere to as responsible people. Most of these promises can work for other pets as well, just substitute your pet for the word dog.
As a dog owner, I promise:
I will never overlook my responsibilities for this living being and recognize that my dog’s welfare is totally dependent on me.
I will always provide fresh water and quality food for my dog.
I will socialize my dog via exposure to new people, places and other dogs.
I will take pride in my dog’s appearance with regular grooming.
I will recognize the necessity of basic training by teaching my dog to reliably sit, stay and come when called.
I will make sure my dog is regarded as an AKC Canine Good Citizen by being aware of my responsibility to my neighbors and to the community.
I will ensure that the proper amount of exercise and mental stimulation appropriate for my dog’s age, breed and energy level is provided.
I will ensure that my dog has some form of identification (which may include collar tags, tattoo or microchip ID.
I will adhere to local leash laws.
I will never put my comfort or schedule over my pet’s safety or needs.
I will do whatever I can in my power to keep my dog safe and from harm at all times including supervision, fencing, and keeping him away from menacing animals, vehicles, chemicals and harmful surroundings. (Small dogs generally need more supervision than large dogs.)
You can sign the Pet Promise by going to the AKC site and Responsible Pet Owners Days.
It’s up to us as responsible pet owners to reach the public and encourage and teach all pet owners on how to ensure happy and safe lives for their pets. We owe our pets the care they deserve and the unconditional love they give to us.
Read more: Responsible Pet Ownership – The Pet Wiki
Dear Animal Advocates,
There is a giant loophole in U.S. law concerning the federal oversight of large-scale commercial dog breeders (commonly known as puppy mills). Currently, breeders who sell to puppy brokers and pet stores have to be licensed by the USDA, while those who sell puppies directly to the public do not.
However, a new bill before the U.S. House of Representatives, the Puppy Uniform Protection and Safety (PUPS) Act, will bring all commercial dog breeders in the United States under federal oversight by requiring any breeder who sells or offers to sell more than 50 dogs annually to the public—including over the Internet—to be licensed and inspected. The bill will also require all licensed breeders to exercise every dog daily.
The PUPS Act has been introduced in past Congressional sessions, but has always timed out. We’ve been given another chance at enacting this extremely important humane legislation, which would improve the lives of hundreds of thousands of dogs nationwide.
What You Can Do
It is vital that members of Congress hear that puppy mill reform is important to their constituents. Please visit the ASPCA Advocacy Center to email your U.S. representative in Washington, D.C., and urge him or her to support and cosponsor the PUPS Act.
Thank you for your continued support of the ASPCA and our nation’s animals!
In this video, Dr. Karen Becker talks about the problem of urine dribbling in pets – the involuntary passage of urine. Listen as she discusses the most common causes of the condition, as well as the treatment options she recommends.
Please note this video addresses involuntary passage of urine only, and isn’t intended to cover other urination-related problems like too-frequent urination or behavioral-related problems like submissive urination.
Involuntary Passage of Urine
Involuntary passage of urine normally occurs while your pet is asleep or resting. When she stands up, you notice urine leakage. It can be just a small wet spot or a good sized puddle, depending on how much urine is being unintentionally passed.
Other times you might notice a problem, for example, when your pet jumps up on the couch and spills a bit of urine, or she dribbles while walking through the house or as she’s running during play.
It’s important to understand your pet isn’t intentionally leaking urine. She has no control over what’s happening. This is not a behavioral problem, it’s a medical problem – so trying to correct or punish your pet is a bad idea on multiple levels.
In fact, many pets become very distressed to realize they are passing urine in places other than a designated potty spot. A housebroken dog or any kitty accustomed to using a litter box will be confused and even ashamed to know they are leaving urine in inappropriate spots.
So it’s very important you treat urine dribbling as a medical problem requiring a medical diagnosis rather than a behavioral problem requiring behavior correction or worse, punishment. Your pet isn’t aware she’s leaking urine until after the fact, and she’s probably as upset with the situation as you are.
Causes of Urinary Incontinence
There are a lot of causes for involuntary passage of urine, especially in dogs.
- Central nervous system trauma. If your pet’s brain or spinal cord isn’t signaling correctly to the bladder, this miscommunication can cause urine dribbling.
- Damage to the pudendal nerve. This is a problem of the lower back in dogs – I see it often in my practice in older dogs with arthritis, degenerative joint disease or trauma to the lower back. If the pudendal nerve, which works the neck of your pet’s bladder, is impinged, the bladder neck can remain slightly open, allowing urine leakage.
- Disease of the bladder, kidneys or adrenals, Cushing’s disease, hypothyroidism and diabetes can all cause dribbling of urine.
- Bladder stones. A dog with a bladder stone will often strain while trying to urinate. He’ll appear to successfully empty his bladder, but when he’s back inside he’ll continue to leak urine. If you’ve noticed this behavior with your pet, you need to consider the possibility of bladder stones.
- Birth defects. Birth defects – structural abnormalities existing from birth – can cause incontinence. If your puppy has been difficult or impossible to housetrain, there could be a birth defect present. An example: the ureter – a tube that collects urine from the kidneys and passes it into the bladder – can bypass the bladder entirely and go directly to the urethra.
This plumbing problem, known as an ectopic ureter, will cause urine, as it’s produced, to dribble right out of your pet’s body.
Some dog breeds have more of these types of from-birth plumbing problems than others. Siberian Huskies, Miniature Poodles, Labradors, Collies, Westies, Wirehaired Fox Terriers and Corgis are more commonly diagnosed with ectopic ureters than other breeds. So if your puppy is leaking urine, you should investigate the possibility of a birth defect.
- Urethral obstruction. Obstruction of the urethra can also cause involuntary passage of urine. A tumor, for example, can obstruct urine flow and cause dribbling. So can urethral stones.
A stone in your pet’s urethra is a medical emergency. You may notice along with urine leakage that your pet is in pain, seems stressed, and might even act panicked. This can be because she needs to empty her bladder and she can’t. The bladder is filling up with urine and there’s no way for her to relieve the mounting pressure.
You should seek veterinary care immediately if your pet seems to have pain along with incontinence, and especially if she’s not able to pass any urine at all.
- Age-related urinary incontinence. Older pets can develop weak pelvic floors or poor bladder tone which can result in urine dribbling. If your dog has signs of canine senility or dementia, he can also simply forget to signal you when he needs to potty outside. His bladder can overfill, and there can be leakage.
- Feline leukemia. For reasons not well understood, some kitties positive for feline leukemia have urine leakage. If your cat starts dribbling urine, it is more than likely a medical issue requiring veterinary care.
Hormone-Induced Urinary Incontinence
Hands down, the most common reason for involuntary urine leakage, especially in dogs, is hormone-induced urinary incontinence.
After a pet is spayed or neutered, the sex hormones estrogen and testosterone, which are necessary to help close the external urethral sphincter, are no longer available. This often results in urine dribbling.
Hormone-induced urinary incontinence is extremely common in spayed female dogs, and somewhat less common in neutered males. These are typically healthy, vibrant pets that just happen to dribble urine anywhere from multiple times a day to just once or twice a year.
Treatment for Urinary Incontinence
The cause of your pet’s urinary incontinence will dictate what treatment she receives.
If there’s an underlying disease process or structural abnormality causing the problem, and it can be corrected through medical management and/or surgery, that’s obviously the way to go.
If your pet is diagnosed with hormone-induced urinary incontinence, I strongly recommend you consider attempting to treat the problem naturally.
At my Natural Pet Animal Hospital, we successfully treat cases of hormone-induced urinary incontinence with Standard Process glandular therapy, as well as natural, biologically appropriate (non-synthetic) hormone replacement therapy and a few excellent herbal remedies
We also frequently use acupuncture to improve function of the pudendal nerve and control or stimulate sufficient closure of the external urethral sphincter. Chiropractic care can also keep the CNS working properly, aiding in normal bladder and neurologic function.
I urge you to start with natural remedies, because some of the traditional drugs used to treat urinary incontinence, specifically DES (diethylstilbestrol), are potentially toxic with side effects that can create more problems for your precious pet than the problem you set out to correct.
Synthetic hormone replacement drugs can cause some of the same problems in female dogs as they do in women who take them. If your pet is dribbling urine, you should work with your vet to determine what’s causing the problem.
As always, I recommend you have a holistic vet on your pet’s treatment team.
Dogs with incontinence that can’t be completely resolved can be fitted with dog bloomers or panties with absorbent pads — you can even use human disposable diapers and cut a hole for the tail. Just remember that urine is caustic and should not remain on your pet’s skin for long periods, so if you use diapers, be sure to change them frequently or remove them during times when your pet isn’t apt to be incontinent.