Summer – A Shelter’s Perfect Storm

July is typically considered the craziest, busiest month for animal shelters and rescues.  Summer in general sees a lot of animals coming in (and hopefully, also going out the front door in large numbers, too!).  Why?  There are actually several factors at play for this “perfect storm”:

Trap/Neuter/Release Programs – if the shelter has a TNR program, they are BUSY right now.  Summer is the “busy” season for animals who are feral (or possibly stray).  Their food sources are active, it’s the time to mate, and the weather makes it easier for them to be out and about.  Traps are filling up quick this time of year, and surgical rooms are packed with animals getting fixed.

Fireworks/summer thunderstorms – summer brings about a lot of activity, including the mid-summer fireworks and lots of summer storms.  Both can be upsetting for pets, who may spook enough to run away from home.  The day after the Fourth of July is actually notorious for being the biggest day of stray intake for shelters.  Make sure to check local shelters regularly if you loose a pet, and check the entire area, not just your one town.  Spooked animals can go pretty far when they get lost.

“Kitten Season” – summer also brings about kittens.  Lots of them.  Cats breed around the same time, bringing about ALL the kittens starting in May each year.  That number just keeps rising until the weather cools off, so shelters are getting packed with cats and kittens this time of year.  Guaranteed your local shelter is doing some kind of adoption special on cats right now, because they have so many that need homes and they need to make room for more.

Loose Pets – when the weather gets better, people tend to not contain their pets as much.  Less leashes, more running down trails, and more letting them outside without keeping an eye on them.  Unfortunately, this leads to more strays as pets can spook, chase something, or just get lost and don’t know how to get home.  And with cats, people tend to not look for them when they don’t come home (which is super tragic… many lost cats DO end up at a shelter, but rarely do they get reclaimed).  This leads to more animals in their stray hold, and more animals up for adoptions when they don’t get reclaimed.

So, the lesson to be learned here is:  if you were thinking of adopting a pet, volunteering at your local shelter, maybe supporting them with a donation… now is the time to do it!  Shelters and rescues across the country need YOU to support them while these crazy summer months are happening.  Get out there and help!

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Humane Cosmetics Act

Testing cosmetics on animals is outdated, unreliable, and completely unnecessary thanks to newer technologies that allow proper testing of products without harming any living beings.  Over 30 countries have phased out animal testing, including the entire EU.  Unfortunately, animal testing, and buying products that have been testing on animals, is still a very legal and widely used practice in the United States.

Luckily, legislation has been introduced to phase out cosmetics animal testing in the US.  The Humane Cosmetics Act legislation, introduced with bipartisan support by Reps. Martha McSally, R-Ariz.; Don Beyer, D-Va.; Ed Royce, R-Calif.; Tony Cárdenas, D-Calif.; Frank LoBiondo, R-N.J.; and Paul Tonko, D-N.Y., would prohibit the use of animals to test cosmetic products and ingredients. It also phases out the sale of cosmetics that have been tested on animals in other countries.

Please join me in urging support for the Humane Cosmetics Act by contacting your US Representative (phone numbers here) and signing this petition.  Thank you!

 

Leash Laws – Not Such A Bad Idea

I’ll admit, I have broken many a leash law in my day with my dog, Montague.  He’s very well behaved and listens to me despite distractions, so in certain situations I trust he will be safe off leash.  But, really, we should never do that.  And here’s why:

1. Other dogs.  Your dog may be great off leash, and may be awesome with other dogs.  But other dogs may not be so great with your dog.  Having your pup off leash creates a tension automatically with any dog he walks up to, because that dog knows they are restricted (on a leash) while your dog is not and that can cause aggression.  Also, other dogs may just not be fans of dogs so your dog being off leash and out of your control could cause some serious issues if/when he runs up to a non-dog friendly dog.

2. Wildlife.  I think we can all agree that if our dog sees a bunny, squirrel, or other chase-able animal, all bets are off and they are not listening to you.  Running off after wildlife can cause safety issues for both your dog and the wildlife.  Also, snakes.  I can’t tell you how many times Monty and I come across a snake on the trails.  Most of the time, they are bull snakes and therefore pretty much harmless, but poisonous snakes are out there and will bite if provoked.  Dogs usually don’t know to be wary of snakes and normally are curious.  This is very dangerous for your pup and could lead to serious injury or even death.

3. Safety.  Overall, it can just be unsafe to have your dog off leash.  Monty and I regularly go hiking in the mountains where some trails have steep drop offs and loose rocks.  Having him on a harness and leash allows me to catch him if were to slip (which has happened).  It also can be unsafe for the environment.  Many trails border or go through protected land, which can be disturbed or destroyed when dogs romp through them (example:  endangered animal nest your dog runs over).

I agree it can be annoying to follow leash laws, but overall, it’s for the greater good to follow them.  Please think twice before taking the leash off and have fun out there walking and hiking with your pups this summer!

Happy Birthday to Calliope!

My wonder cat, who was born with FeLV (Feline leukemia virus, click here to learn more about this incurable disease), celebrated her third birthday this past Monday, May 8.   This little kitty is the ever playful, super cuddly, defier of all odds who will not, and cannot, be stopped.   Happy Birthday, Calliope.  You are a true little wonder bunny-cat!!

Monty Update – April 12

Monty had his final check up at the CSU Flint Animal Cancer Center this morning:  He is healing well, and cleared to eat and play however he wants again!!!  WOOT!!!  He has been pouting and  sulking a lot the last week, wanting his toys and to play catch.  So I am super happy to learn we can get back into our

THANK YOU to all of you who have support me and Monty through this crazy journey of battling cancer.  Your kind words, positive vibes, prayers, and generosity have helped more than I can ever express.

Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!!!

Monty Update – Cancer Free!

Wednesday afternoon I got the call from the Colorado State University Veterinary Hospital oncology team that my Mister Montague the Moose is officially cancer free. YAY!!! It is such a relief to learn everything Monty and I have gone through the last two months has led to him back on track to enjoy his life as he is meant to.

Now, we focus on healing up from surgery (despite our fun set back of three visits to the ER the weekend after Monty’s surgery. He kicked two of his stitches out in his sleep Saturday night, which kicked off *pun intended* a weekend full of trying to fix the stitches.) and snuggling ALL THE TIME. And, once he’s healed up, we are going to have so many awesome adventures, too, to celebrate. Lots of hiking and swimming adventures are in our future this spring and summer, and maybe a road trip or two as well!

Thank you for all your love and support as we went through this battle. I really appreciate you so, so very much.

Just a few days before Monty’s big surgery that would alter his handsome looks, we went to Horsetooth Reservoir to do a photo shoot to capture Monty’s amazing personality. The photos were beautifully done by Erin Thames Photography. Enjoy!

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My boyfriend, Ryan, has lovingly set up a donation page for Monty’s surgery.  If you would like to support Mr. Montague in his surgery and recovery, please consider making an investment in his future as a derper dog (due to the tongue hanging out situation that we now have!).  Thank you ❤

Monty Update – Back Home!

Monty’s surgery did not start until a little after 4pm yesterday, and his surgery took longer than expected so I did not get the phone call from the surgeon until about 7:15pm.  At that time, I was hosting my usual quiz at McClellan’s Brewing, but the staff and quizzers alike were super supportive of me having to pause the quiz and take the call to make sure Monty made it out of surgery okay.

This morning, CSU called a little after 8am updating me that Monty did well through the night and had a pretty good appetite as well.  They said he was doing great this morning and that I could pick him up after 11am, so I went and got him right at 11.

So now we are home!  Monty is quite alert, although a little droopy/drugged up (he’s got some pretty sweet pain medications to give him comfort).   Now begins the healing process.  At this moment, he is napping by the door and drooling all over the place.   He gets three medications three times a day at different intervals, so I am working on making a chart to keep track of it all.  In 10-14 days, Monty will go back to the vet to have a check up appointment and make sure everything is healing correctly.  And in 7-10 days we will hear back from the lab as to whether or not the tumor was completely removed.  If the lab results come back that the tumor is fully gone, Monty is cured of cancer. (!!!)

I will make sure to do an update once we  hear back from the lab and know our status in this cancer battle.  Thank you to everyone who has been so amazing and supportive during this process.  I am forever in your debt!! ❤

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Ryan has lovingly set up a donation page for Monty’s surgery.  If you would like to support Mr. Montague in his surgery and recovery, please consider making an investment in his future as a derper dog (due to the tongue hanging out situation that we now have!).  Thank you ❤