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Every Pet Deserves A Good Home…

Our Weasel Of The Week!! – 06-04-15

Once again, It’s time to present this week’s statuette of shame, The Golden Weasel!!

Every Tuesday, the Council nominates some of the slimiest, most despicable characters in public life for some deed of evil, cowardice or corruption they’ve performed. Then we vote to single out one particular Weasel for special mention, to whom we award the statuette of shame, our special, 100% plastic Golden Weasel. This week’s nominees were all disgusting but one of them stood out as an almost unanimous choice. The envelope please…. for Weasel Of The Week.

Image source: Charleston Animal Society

The Monster Who Tortured And Abused This Dog

Don Surber: The known-only-to-God-and-the-Devil expletive who did this. The bastard.

Ah, but he’s not only known to G-d and the devil anymore, but to the world.

William Leonard Dodson (Photo Source: Al Cannon Detention Center)

This man (and I use the term loosely) is William Leonard Dodson, of Charleston, South Carolina’s northside Chicora Cherokee neighborhood and he’s in much better conditions than he left a helpless animal.

Caitlyn, a 15-month old Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix was left chained up with her muzzle taped tightly shut with electrical tape. That meant the dog was left in intense pain for what authorities estimate was 48 hours without being able to eat or drink, and her ability to cool herself was impaired.

The dog eventually broke free and was found on a neighbor’s porch, who turned her into the local animal shelter for treatment. Because her teeth were clamped down by the tape on to her tongue and the blood flow was cut off, a large part of it may have to be amputated, affecting her ability to drink or cool herself normally by panting for the rest of her life.

In fact, it was one of Dodson’s neighbors who turned him in:

Court documents allege Dodson purchased the dog, which was known as “Diamond” at the time, for $20 on May 25. A witness who said she sold him the dog told investigators Dodson approached the woman who sold him the dog and said he had taped the dog’s face with electrical tape because she would not stop barking. The witness said Dodson was laughing about the claim, court documents state.

Dodson also reportedly told the witness he had chained the dog in his front yard but that the dog had broken free and escaped, the affidavit states.

The dog was found the following day, Wednesday morning, on someone’s doorstep with electrical tape wrapped around her muzzle.

A medical report from Veterinary Emergency Care described the dog’s muzzle as “markedly swollen with evidence of tape around its muzzle,” and its tongue as “significantly swollen, significantly bruised, discolored (dark purple) and oozing blood,” court documents state.

After this story broke, donations for Caitlyn’s treatment poured in from as far away as Mexico, Ireland, Australia, Guatemala, England, Germany, New Zealand, the Czech Republic, Canada, Belgium, Scotland, Indonesia, Estonia, the Philippines, Iceland, Hungary and Japan as well as from many people in the United States. If she heals, Caitlyn has a waiting list of fifty people who have applied to adopt her.

Dodson was was issued a $50,000 surety bond Tuesday by Magistrate Priscilla Baldwin and told he had to surrender a second dog he has at his residence. He’s been charged with felony animal cruelty, which carries a maximum penalty of 5 years and/or a $5,000 fine.

As one Council member remarked, Dodson isn’t quite Weasel material being simply cruel and sadistic. That’s true, but while it’s stretching it a bit, there more than a bit of weasel in treating a dog like this and then giggling about how clever you are and how this was going to teach the dog a lesson. You see, one thing Weasels have in common..they’re largely amoral.And I’d be willing to bet better than even money that Dodson doesn’t even think what he did was wrong.

You see, Dodson is a career criminal, with extensive convictions for drug and weapons violations:

At the time of his arrest Monday, Dodson was on probation for a weapons conviction and out of jail on bail on a more recent drug and gun charge.

Dodson was convicted in May 2013 of possession of a firearm by a convicted violent felon, sentenced to six years and put on probation, according to a criminal background check with the State Law Enforcement Division.

Dodson was arrested again this March and charged with possession of cocaine and unlawful carrying of a weapon, according to SLED. He was released from the Charleston County jail on $110,000 bail.

I’m sure these are just the latest highlights in a long career.

There’s been a lot said about how ‘warehousing criminals’ is both expensive for society and morally wrong. So quite a few criminals simply get released early, or plea bargain to a shocking degree and get probation or sharply reduced penalties for lesser charges.

There is a fiscal argument there, but it falls apart when you consider the high cost, human and financial of repeat offenses, which are typically more egregious and deadly than prior ones.

The reason for that is because prison time is increasingly less of a deterrent these days, and not taken overly seriously by the William Leonard Dawsons of the world. Even the death penalty is hardly a deterrent these days when it consists of a painless drug cocktail administered after decades of appeals ad delays..if the death penalty is even applied at all.

No, I’m not advocating daily whipping or drawing and quartering murderers. But making prison a lot less pleasant and a lot more of a place to stay out of and bringing back the traditional methods of executions with limits on appeals might have an amazing effect of society and even encourage the William Leonard Dawsons to think twice.

Mr. Dawson isn’t here to get his Weasel, which is fine by me. I will see to it that it’s delivered to The Charleston Animal Society for him to pick up there. Being that it’s the South, a place where many traditional values hold forth, I have a feeling some of the members might take the opportunity to make their feelings known about this to Mr. Dawson in a personal way if he shows up to obtain it. At any rate, I would hope so.

No punishment would be to severe for Dodson, but unfortunately, he and most animal abusers get off far to light!! Teen Who Killed Kitten Only Had to Serve One Year in Prison  Help Stop Abuse… Animals, Pets, Seniors, Child and Spousal, All Abuse and most abusers cross the lines into several or all types of abuse.

Well, there it is! 

Check back next Tuesday to see who next week’s nominees for Weasel of the Week are!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum, and remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it...or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

June 6, 2015 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Rescues, animals, Dogs, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Man's Best Friend, Pets, Political Change, Stop Animal Cruelty, Toughen Animal Abuse Laws and Sentences, We Are All God's Creatures | , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Unusual Friends

Big Dog and Calf SameSize and Sharing Pen

By Marion Algier – JOMP

Big Dog and Calf are virtually same size and new best friends

March 21, 2015 Posted by | Animal and Pet Photos, animal behavior, Animal Cuteness, animals, Dogs, Dogs, Pet Friendship and Love, We Are All God's Creatures | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Our Favorite Photo of the 2014 Holiday Season – JOMP

Pony For Christmas 2014 - Courtney's Boys

December 26, 2014 Posted by | Adopt Just One More Pet, Animal and Pet Photos, Animal Cuteness, animals, Holidays With Pets, Just One More Pet, pet fun, Pets | Leave a comment

Power of Plastic… Horrible

Power of Plastic

The power of plastic! This turtle likely crawled through a discarded plastic ring of a 6-pack of beer or soda when it was a baby, and now is being forever strangled in a plastic hangman’s noose! Share this if you are not OK with it. ‪#‎jeffcorwin‬ ‪#‎recycle‬

August 23, 2014 Posted by | animal abuse, Animal and Pet Photos, animals, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Unusual Stories, We Are All God's Creatures | Leave a comment

Found This Baby Dying On A Hot Sidewalk. What He Does Next Will Floor You

Amazing!!

PawMyGosh: It was a hot Florida day when Jeff Longo spotted something tiny on the sidewalk. When he looked closer, he realized it was a baby squirrel. It was lying there on the hot pavement close to death. He thought there was no way it would survive. But he was gonna do everything in his power to try and help.

He dedicated the next three months of his life nursing the tiny squirrel. He would feed her puppy formula through a bottle, heavy cream and most importantly – give lots of love! The following pictures will take you through the amazing journey:

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August 9, 2014 Posted by | Animal and Pet Photos, Animal Cuteness, Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Success Stories | 3 Comments

Pet Poisons: The Top 10 Suspects for Dogs – And for Cats

Story at-a-glance

  • Earlier in the year, the Pet Poison Helpline released its annual list of most common pet toxins for 2013. For the first time, canine joint supplements made the top 10 list of dog toxins. Fortunately, most dogs who sample too many joint supplements only develop diarrhea, but in rare cases of overdose, liver failure can occur.
  • Other items on the top 10 list of dog toxins included many of the usual suspects: chocolate, raisins and grapes, the sweetener xylitol, human medications, rat poison, and insect bait stations.
  • The most common toxins for cats last year included lilies, plants containing insoluble calcium oxalate crystals, household cleaners, flea/tick spot-on products for dogs, human medications, household insecticides, and glow sticks and glow jewelry.
  • If you know or suspect your pet has ingested or been exposed to a toxic substance, call your veterinarian, a nearby emergency animal hospital, and/or the 24/7 Pet Poison Helpline at 800-213-6680. You can also download the Pet Poison Help iPhone app.

Toxic Pet Food

By Dr. Becker

Earlier this year, the Pet Poison Helpline released the top 10 household items that caused pet guardians to call for poison consultations during 2013.

According to the Helpline’s Associate Director Ahna Brutlag, DVM, the list of cat toxins didn’t change from last year, but a new item made it to the top 10 list for dogs: canine joint supplements. These supplements have "limited toxicity" according to Dr. Brutlag, but a few cases of liver failure following a massive overdose have been reported.

If you know or suspect your pet has ingested or been exposed to a toxic substance, call your veterinarian, a nearby emergency animal hospital, and/or the 24/7 Pet Poison Helpline at 800-213-6680. You can also download their Pet Poison Help iPhone app here.

Top 10 Dog Toxins in 2013

1. Chocolate
Chocolate contains theobromine and caffeine, which are both classified as methylxanthines. These compounds can cause hyperactivity, increased heart rate, tremors, and potentially death. The more bitter the chocolate, the more toxic it is. Bakers and dark chocolate are the most toxic, and milk chocolate can be dangerous if ingested in large amounts.

2. Xylitol
Xylitol, a sugar substitute common in sugar-free chewing gum and many other products, can cause life-threatening hypoglycemia and liver damage in dogs.

3. NSAIDs
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like Advil, Motrin and Aleve, can cause GI ulcers and kidney failure.

4. Over-the-counter cough, cold and allergy medications
Many of these preparations contain acetaminophen (a painkiller) and pseudoephedrine or phenylephrine (decongestants) and are highly toxic.

5. Rodenticides
Rat and mouse poison can contain inactive ingredients that are attractive to dogs. Aside from eating the poison itself, dogs can also become sick from eating a rodent that has ingested poison. Exposure to rat and mouse poison can cause bleeding, seizures and kidney damage.

6. Grapes and raisins
These foods, even in small amounts, can cause kidney failure in dogs.

7. Insect bait stations
The danger here is primarily bowel obstruction when a dog swallows the plastic shell that contains the bait.

8. Prescription ADD/ADHD drugs
These drugs are amphetamines that can cause tremors, heart problems, seizures and death in pets.

9. Glucosamine joint supplements
These supplements are often flavored to appeal to dogs. Overdoses usually produce nothing more dangerous than diarrhea, but in rare cases, liver failure can result.

10. Oxygen absorbers and silica gel packs
Oxygen absorbers are found in packages of pet treats, beef jerky, and other consumables, and they contain iron that can cause iron poisoning in dogs. Silica gel packs are the small white packs found in new shoes, purses and backpacks.

Top 10 Cat Toxins in 2013

1. Lilies
The variety of lily determines whether it is relatively harmless or potentially deadly. Non-toxic varieties include the Calla, Peace and Peruvian, and typically cause irritation of the upper GI tract. Toxic lilies — including the Tiger, Asiatic, Stargazer, Casablanca, Rubrum, Day, Japanese Show and Easter lily — can prove deadly for your cat. Just a tiny amount of any portion of these plants can cause kidney failure.

2. Household cleaners
General-purpose cleaners are relatively safe (all-natural products are a much better choice), but concentrated products like drain or toilet bowl cleaners can cause chemical burns.

3. Flea/tick spot-on products for dogs
Never use a canine flea/tick product on your cat. Depending on the ingredients in the product, just a drop has the potential to kill a cat within hours.

4. Antidepressants
Cymbalta and Effexor topped Pet Poison Helpline’s toxic antidepressants list in 2013. For some reason kitties are drawn to these medications, which can cause severe neurologic and cardiac effects.

5. NSAIDs
Cats are more sensitive than dogs to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen and naproxen. And because kitties are so sensitive, veterinary-specific NSAIDs should be used with extreme caution, if at all.

6. Prescription ADD/ADHD medications
Just as with dogs, these drugs, which are amphetamines, can cause tremors, heart problems, seizures and death in cats.

7. Over-the-counter cough, cold and allergy medications
Many of these preparations contain acetaminophen (a painkiller) and pseudoephedrine or phenylephrine (decongestants). Acetaminophen is especially toxic to cats – it damages red blood cells and causes liver failure.

8. Plants containing insoluble calcium oxalate crystals
Peace lilies, philodendron and pothos can cause oral and upper GI irritation, foaming at the mouth and inflammation when ingested.

9. Household insecticides
If you use insecticides on your indoor plants (which I definitely do not recommend, since they are environmental toxins), make sure to keep your kitty away from plants after application until the products have dried or settled.

10. Glow sticks and glow jewelry
Many cats enjoying gnawing on glow sticks and glow jewelry. These items contain dibutyl phthalate, a chemical that can leak out and burn your cat’s fur and tongue.

Related: 

Pets and Toxic Plants

Deadly Pet Treats Are Still Showing Up In The US After Years Of FDA Investigation… Learn to Make Your Own 

Ditch This Pet Food Now – Can Be Deadly to Your Pets 

Cancer and Your Pet: Two Things to Avoid 

Top 10 Human Medications That Poison Our Pets 

The Dangers of Genetically Modified Ingredients in Pet Food

August 3, 2014 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Related Education, animals, Dogs, Dogs, Just One More Pet, Pet Friendship and Love, Pet Health, Pet Nutrition, Pets, responsible pet ownership | 3 Comments

Pit Bull Hailed as Hero for Alerting Deaf Boy to Fire With a Lick

Hero dog: Ace: This photo provided by the Indianapolis Fire Department shows Ace, a pit bull, resting outside the home of Lindsay and James Bernard of Indianapolis after the home caught fire on Wednesday, July 16, 2014.

AP Photo: Indianapolis Fire Department, Rita Reith

This photo provided by the Indianapolis Fire Department shows Ace, a pit bull, resting outside the home of Lindsay and James Bernard of Indianapolis after the home caught fire on Wednesday, July 16, 2014.

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A two-year old male pit bull named Ace is being hailed as a hero for licking the face of a sleeping, deaf 13-year-old Indianapolis boy to alert him that his house was on fire.

Indianapolis Fire Department Capt. Rita Reith says Nick Lamb was home alone and sleeping without his hearing aids when the fire began Wednesday.

She says Ace licked Nick’s face until he awoke to find the house filling with smoke. The boy quickly covered his nose and mouth with his T-shirt and fled outside. He was not injured in the fire.

The boy told firefighters this was the first summer he was old enough to stay home alone and that he had returned from summer camp just three days earlier.

Firefighters estimated damage to the home at $175,000, but Ace and Nick made it out safely. No one else was home when the fire started.

July 17, 2014 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, Dogs, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pet Friendship and Love, Pets, Success Stories | 3 Comments

Dog Meat in Chinese Restaurants

Think about this the next time you go out for Chinese dinner in the U.S. or anywhere else. Are you really sure what you are eating?

And stop supporting a country, a society, people who think this is okay.  Stop buying Chinese products until this changes.  China has a horrific record on both human rights and the treatment of animals and they have poisoned our kids with led toys in Happy Meals; they have sold us bad pet food over and over again that has killed hundreds if not thousands of American pets; and they manipulate their currency to destroy ours (the currencies of the west).

By Rob CooperThe DailyMail -  Published: 08:26 EST, 25 June 2012 | Updated: 10:24 EST, 25 June 2012

These disturbing images show dogs being cooked and served up as a meal in a grim Chinese tradition.

The animals are chopped up and cooked in front of diners – despite a growing anti-cruelty campaign.

A group of Chinese activists in Yulin City, Guangxi province, descended on the dog meat market campaigning against eating the animals.

WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT

Takeaway: A cage full of dogs is lifted like just another type of cargo

Takeaway: A cage full of dogs is lifted like just another type of cargo

Grim: The dogs arrive alive in cages ready to be killed, cut up and cooked at the meat market in Yulin City, Guangxi province, China

Grim: The dogs arrive alive in cages ready to be killed, cut up and cooked at the meat market in Yulin City, Guangxi province, China

Artist Pian Shan Kong knelt down in front of the dead animals confessing for people’s sins as he apologized to the dead animals during the demonstration.

China is yet to make animal cruelty illegal and end the grim tradition despite campaigning by animal rights activists.

Pet lovers’ associations have sprung up in Chinese cities over recent years.

While many Chinese enjoy rich dog meat, especially during cold winters, some object to the practice in some regions of beating dogs to death to release the blood into the meat.

A real dogs dinner: A disturbing picture of a dog dish being prepared in China

A real dogs dinner: A disturbing picture of a dog dish being prepared in China

Dog dinner: Diners tuck into a meal which includes dog in Yulin, Guangxi province, China. The tradition dates back thousands of years

Dog dinner: Diners tuck into a meal which includes dog in Yulin, Guangxi province, China. The tradition dates back thousands of years

When food is scarce, dogs are eaten as an emergency food source around China in a practice which is seen as socially acceptable.

As the country becomes more affluent, a growing number of families are buying dogs as pets fuelling the growing campaign against animal cruelty.

In April, more than 500 dogs set to be slaughtered were saved when the truck they were being carried in to the slaughterhouse was intercepted by activists.

Many of the 505 creatures had barely survived their terrible ordeal, having endured cramped conditions and a lack of water during their near 1,000 mile journey by road.

But rescue came too late for 11 dogs which had succumbed to dehydration and exposure.

Grim: The dead animals lie scattered about ready to be cooked up and eaten in a Chinese restaurant

Grim: The dead animals lie scattered about ready to be cooked up and eaten in a Chinese restaurant

Dog dining: People tuck into dog meals in a restaurant in China in a grim tradition

Dog dining: People tuck into dog meals in a restaurant in China in a grim tradition

Dog meat: The animals being prepared for a meal and a living dog, right

Dog meat: The animals being prepared for a meal and a living dog, right

Chinese meal: Diners tuck into dishes in a restaurant which include dog

Chinese meal: Diners tuck into dishes in a restaurant which include dog

Every animal, especially domesticated animals (pets) deserve to be treated humanely!!  We are all God’s Creatures!!

Related: 

Voiceless Friends… Stop the Dog Meat Trade 

Dogs slaughtered for meat in Vietnam… Stop the Dog Meat Trade

STOP KILLING DOGS! 2 million dogs killed in Horrible ways every Year in South Korea

Olympic Clean-up Chinese Style: Beijings Shocking Cat Death Camps

Dog found hanging from meat hook 

Dog Meat In Beijing Ordered Off Menu For Olympics

More:

A picture to terrify every parent: Chinese father drags baby boy through traffic in a crate attached to his moped with an old piece of rope

The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated. -Mahatma Gandhi

When you look at our shelter system, we don’t do a very good job ourselves… but China (Asia)’s record is abhorrent!

‘Dogs Have The Intelligence of a Human Toddler’

July 1, 2014 Posted by | animal abuse, Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Rights And Awareness, animals, Dogs, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pet Abuse, Pets, Stop Animal Cruelty, We Are All God's Creatures | 3 Comments

Safe Haven for Pets… For Animals

One of my dreams for quite some time has been to purchase land (in the US) and set up a temporary (and forever for some) haven for pets/animals.  I would love to hire some computer wiz-kids to set up a national registry to connect all the shelters, rescues, etc. around the country so people looking for them, a particular pet can find them.  Then set-up a network to transport the pets to the people who want them, their forever homes.  And for those who need longer, they could come to us, to the center, until their forever home comes available or their forever parents find them. 

I believe there is a forever home for every pet… for every animal and they we are all God’s creatures, so need to work together.

Marion at JOMP~

So this really touches my heart!!

Embedded image permalink

Tribune:

Ayesha Chundrigar with an ACF shelter dog. ALL PHOTOS COURTESY: AYESHA CHUNDRIGAR FOUNDATION

Growing up in a house full of pets gave Ayesha Chundrigar an informal, intuitive education in empathy and respect for animals at a young age. She was only nine years old when she began volunteering at an orphanage during her summer holidays, and by the age of 15 she was teaching at various non-profit schools in katchi abadis around Islamabad, where she was living at the time. She was also helping at refugee camps in the city in the aftermath of the 2005 earthquake in the northern areas of Pakistan, but her true altruism shone through when she launched her NGO, the Ayesha Chundrigar Foundation (ACF), in Karachi, which among other things, aims at giving a voice to the voiceless – animals.

Apart from the Pakistan Animal Welfare Society (PAWS), ACF is now the second non-profit organisation which aims to rescue abandoned, abused or injured stray animals. Chundrigar who took up the challenge of managing and maintaining Edhi Foundation’s animal shelter in Karachi, says that the place was in an abysmal state when she first visited it. “There were animal carcasses and dead puppies and donkeys lying in pools of blood. I still have nightmares about it,” she says. “I found the number of a vet listed on a board close to the shelter and gave him a call saying he had to help me and that was it.”

All animals coexist in perfect harmony at the shelter.

Chundrigar started with four dogs and some savings. The shelter now houses over 100 animals, including donkeys, dogs, cats, eagles and pigeons. Although she has used up all her savings, she finds her job truly worthwhile. ACF has rescued over 600 animals in Karachi and has long-term plans of opening its own animal sanctuary instead of only managing Edhi’s animal shelter. “We have been given a piece of land for 10 years and we are ready to begin construction,” informs Chundrigar, adding that the new shelter will be able to house over 300 animals, with designated sections for donkeys, cats, dogs and other rescued animals.

Although the current shelter lacks electricity and water supplies, the Edhi Foundation is making do. They are preparing to install a water tank and solar panels. The animals are fed fresh food every morning and there is a general atmosphere of hope and recovery. “Our cats and puppies eat together and play together,” says Chundrigar. “I can stay and look at these sights forever.”

But this is not always the case. “Dogs have come in a paralysed and crippled [state] or with horrific wounds, but I’m lucky enough to see miracles every day. These animals [eventually] become strong, loving creatures that shower you with unconditional love.”

Dr Farid nurses the fore limbs of a donkey at one of the camps.

At the present, ACF’s core team of seven members, including Chundrigar, volunteer. The only ones on a payroll are their three veterinarians: Dr Khalid Memon, ACF’s senior vet who is a professor at the Baqai Veterinary College in Karachi, Ghulam Farid, a junior vet who is a final year veterinary student at Baqai, and Salman Wali, a manager and trainee vet at Baqai.  Together they embrace the animals that society discards.

With the help of Edhi Foundation’s service, ACF conducts most of its rescue missions around the city in an ambulance. Public transport, however, is also used by vets when the ambulance is unavailable. Once the injured animal has been rescued, its wounds are treated and then begins the long rehabilitation process.

Ayesha Chundrigar with her team at a recent donkey camp.

Although most rescue operations end on a happy note, some have tragic endings. When Chundrigar first saw the image of a female dog, with a disfigured face lying on the ground almost lifeless, on Facebook, she didn’t just comment on the extreme sorrow she felt, instead she took a hands-on approach. “Five of her puppies were snuggled near her tummy [in the picture] and I sent my team to rescue them [from Chundrigar Road],” she says. “The wounds … were definitely a few days old, her eye sockets were empty and she was severely dehydrated and malnourished, but by some miracle she stayed alive to feed her babies. We bandaged her up and started her treatment,” she says, adding that the puppies were fed formula milk although their mother was still determined to feed them herself. Although after a day the dog had gained enough strength to stand up on its own and take a few steps, she eventually succumbed to her injuries. “Unfortunately her wounds were too deep and after I petted her for hours and gently explained to her that I’d take care of her puppies, she let go.”

But dampened spirits don’t last at ACF for long as the team finds solace in the animals they have successfully rescued and rehabilitated. Bravo, a dog so thin and malnourished that he could barely lift his head, was nursed to health by Farid who was determined to see him stand on his feet. After several blood tests, X-rays and consistent monitoring, Bravo has not only regained its health but is currently ACF’s guard dog. “[Bravo is the] biggest, strongest and healthiest dogs at the shelter,” Chundrigar says proudly. “He gives me the warmest, most welcoming hugs every time I see him.”

ACF also holds regular donkey camps. “The way donkeys are treated in this country kills me and I wanted to somehow change that,” says Chundrigar. “The donkey camps started with literally just me and my senior vet standing on the roadside in [areas where donkey-carts are readily used], asking people to let us medically treat their donkeys for free.” While initially Chundrigar’s team was met with suspicion, with some cart owners believing that they were here to harm their sole source of income, they soon warmed up to them once they were convinced that the team was only there to help. Over 50 donkeys are fed and treated free of charge twice a month, in various parts of Karachi, including Sohrab Goth, Korangi and Nipa Chowrangi. ACF also conducted a ‘hydration drive’ last year when biscuits and chilled water bottles were distributed to people around the city.

Dr Farid gives one of the dogs eye treatment at the Edhi Foundation animal shelter along the highway.

Like PAWS, ACF relies heavily on social media to raise awareness about animal cruelty in Pakistan. “People see updates on our animal rescue activities and donkey camps and want to help out,” says Chundrigar. And it was through Facebook that Chundrigar teamed up with Zain Mustafa, an architect and die-hard animal lover, who is now a part of ACF’s core team. Many have even shown interest in adopting ACF’s rescued animals. “The encouraging part is that people are positive towards something being done for animals in this country,” she says. And while on the topic of showing compassion towards animals in the country, Mustafa adds, “It can be done by introducing the value of animals into our mainstream education system and curriculum at a very early age…  By getting children to physically interact with a variety of animals and bridge the widening gap between ‘us’ and ‘them’.”

ACF’s second project is also currently in the pipeline. It will aim to provide a therapeutic centre for healing that will focus on conducting individual counseling, art therapy and support groups. “We will be working with sexually and physically abused women, children and transgenders. [The project] will also include education for donkey-cart owners that, I believe, will gradually help change their behaviour towards the animals,” says Chundrigar, who is training to become a certified counselor.

But with limited funding, the ACF can only do so much. Although people have been donating cash and tangibles such as food via the information provided to them on social media, the funds are trickling in slowly. “What we get is enough to manage our current animals’ food and medical treatment,” says Chundrigar, adding that the monthly cost for food and supplies at the shelter is well over Rs100,000 and keeps increasing as the organisation rescues more animals each day. “We still need help starting our new shelter, acquiring ambulances and starting an inner-city emergency unit.”

Even though Chundrigar is positive about the path ahead for ACF, she admits that for Pakistan, animal welfare and charity is something quite “out of the ordinary,” with people often mocking her work. “They said I was crazy to think I could do something for animals because the situation is too far gone. Also, it’s an uphill battle explaining to people why animals deserve love and a chance at having a better life.”

Donation details:

Ayesha Chundrigar Foundation

Iban number: Pk33BAHL1036008100660001

Account number: 10360081006600012

Bank Al Habib, Kh-e-Hafiz Branch, Karachi.

For food donations and volunteering queries, please write to:

ayeshachundrigarfoundation@gmail.com

Sonya Rehman is a writer/journalist based in Lahore. She tweets @sonyarehman

Published in The Express Tribune, Sunday Magazine, June 15th, 2014.

Please Donate if you Can!!

June 27, 2014 Posted by | Adopt Just One More Pet, Animal Abandonement, Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Rescues, animals, Dogs, Dogs, Fostering and Rescue, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, NO KILL NATION, Outreach for Pets, Pet Friendship and Love, Pets, Political Change, Stop Animal Cruelty, Stop Euthenization, We Are All God's Creatures | 3 Comments

Kids with autism connect, cuddle with future service dogs: ‘I love them’

Students snuggle and play with puppies at the Lionheart School in Alpharetta, Georgia. The puppies will go on to become service dogs for war veterans and others with disabilities.

LionPaws via Facebook

Today – Pets By LauraT Coffey – Originally Posted on June 10, 2014 at 4:11 PM ET  -  Cross Posted at True Health Is True Wealth

A student named Max, front, and other children snuggle and play with puppies at the Lionheart School in Alpharetta, Georgia. The puppies will go on to become service dogs for war veterans and others with disabilities.

For many children with autism, social interactions with strangers can be awkward and anxiety-inducing. But if the stranger is a gentle golden retriever puppy with huge paws and a quiet snore, something remarkable happens.

Throw a puppy into the mix, and the uneasiness tends to melt away.

“It’s just amazing,” said Elizabeth Dulin, co-founder and head of the Lionheart School, which serves students with autism in Alpharetta, Georgia. “When our kids interact with the dogs, we see reduced anxiety levels. … They become calm and focused.”

One 11-year-old student named Max can quickly identify all seven of the puppies romping around the school. How can he name them so effortlessly when they look so similar? That’s easy.

“Because I love them,” Max told WXIA-TV in Atlanta.

A student named Max holds a puppy in a Target store.

WXIA / 11Alive.com

Max, 11, converses with anyone who will listen about a puppy in his care during a field trip to a Target store.

Lionheart is home base for a new partnership with the paws4people foundation, which trains service dogs for war veterans, disabled kids and adults. Dubbed the “LionPaws Puppy Development Center,” the fledgling program sees to it that the future service dogs help as many people as possible throughout their training.

The puppies spend the first four months of their lives at Lionheart, where they befriend the school’s 39 students. The kids hold the puppies, talk to the puppies, bathe the puppies and go on field trips with the puppies — all the while socializing the animals and preparing them for more advanced obedience training ahead.

A puppy that will become a service dog.

LionPaws via Facebook  -  As this puppy trains to become a service dog, it will touch the lives of many humans in need.

The next stop is an inmate intervention program, where prisoners in good standing teach the puppies 125 commands and train them to open and close doors, turn lights on and off and perform other tasks. Inmates entrusted with the dogs’ training get more than a sense of purpose — they also receive recent job experience that can help them find employment when they get released.

The final phase of the dogs’ training happens at the University of North Carolina in Wilmington, where paws4people is based. Animal-loving students get college credit for making sure the dogs are fully prepared to go to their new homes — often with war veterans who are physically disabled or who have post-traumatic stress disorder.

Related story: ‘She gives me independence’: Service dog changes wounded veteran’s life

Puppies go down a slide with Lionheart students.

LionPaws via Facebook -  Getting socialized: Puppies go down a slide with Lionheart students.

paws4people has been training service dogs for 14 years. The newest segment of socialization and training for some puppies — spending time with children with autism — began in January of this year. The results so far have been “nothing short of miraculous,” said Sarah Rosenbaum, director of the LionPaws Puppy Development Center.

Rosenbaum said she’s seen non-verbal children become chatty around the puppies, and she’s seen children with motor-skill deficits get up and run to see the puppies.

“They’re just so excited, which really is such a source of pride for me,” she told TODAY.com. “The children are providing for the puppies, and the puppies are providing for the children.”

Adults and kids holding puppies on a couch.

LionPaws via Facebook -  The puppies get plenty of affection during the first four months of their lives at the Lionheart School.

Lionheart’s first batch of seven puppies is about to move on to the inmate intervention phase of their training, and a new pile of puppies will arrive at the school soon. Five members of the school’s staff have become certified as dog handlers, and that makes it possible for one older service dog named LANGLEY to stay at the school year-round.

Dulin, the head of the Lionheart School, said LANGLEY and the puppies have been helping students to make social and emotional connections. On field trips to Target or to a nursing home, the children often will open up and make conversation with strangers about the puppies. Or when a student is having a bad day, a furry friend can help them regain a sense of normalcy.

“A lot of our kids have difficulty regulating their emotions,” Dulin told TODAY.com. “One little girl who deals with a lot of anxiety was riding in carpool one morning, and a boy who rides with her slammed his finger in the door. This little girl started crying and she could not stop.”

The girl locked herself, wailing, inside a bathroom stall and refused to come out. A teacher knew just what to do: Launch Operation LANGLEY. She brought LANGLEY into the bathroom and sat on the floor until the girl was ready to let the dog into her space.

“About three minutes later, the teacher saw a little ‘thumbs up’ sticking out from under the stall door,” Dulin said. “LANGLEY went into the stall, calmed her down, and then the two walked to class together. And she had been inconsolable — without LANGLEY, we probably would have needed to call her parents.”

Related story: Xena the Warrior Puppy, rescued from abuse, helps 8-year-old boy with autism

Puppies playing in playground equipment.

LionPaws via Facebook -  Puppies take a break while playing with Lionheart students.

Research regarding the effects of companion animals on kids with autism is limited but encouraging. One study published last year revealed that children with autism spectrum disorder were more likely to talk, laugh, make eye contact and show other positive social behaviors in the presence of guinea pigs than they were in the presence of toys.

And in her 2010 paper “What a Dog Can Do: Children with Autism and Therapy Dogs in Social Interaction,” researcher Olga Solomon highlighted cases of dogs helping children to communicate and connect emotionally with others around them. As Solomon noted in her paper, “dogs lead humans elsewhere, and this elsewhere is often better than where we have been before.”

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June 16, 2014 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, Dogs, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pets, Success Stories, We Are All God's Creatures | 4 Comments