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Archive for the ‘Resources’ Category

Would you and your family like to really get away this summer?  How about becoming one with nature again, if you could sleep in a comfortable bed and take a nice hot shower?  There is a place like that in the North Carolina Mountains.  It is called Clear Creek Ranch. Nestled in a quiet valley in the Great Smoky Mountains at an elevation of 3,200 feet, Clear Creek Dude Ranch is surrounded by the beautiful Pisgah National Forest.  They welcome guests from April to Thanksgiving.  Some of the activities you will enjoy are horseback riding, camp fires, golf, fishing, hiking, swimming and many more.

It is owned by some wonderful friends of mine, Rex and Aileen Frederick. Rex was a great basketball star at Auburn University.  He became only the 3rd Auburn Tiger to have his jersey (#32) retired.  Rex is in the Auburn Hall of Fame.

Rex and his wife, Aileen, have always had a passion for animals, especially horses.  They decided to buy a dude ranch. It has been a wonderful experience for them but it is time for them to move on.  They are at that age where they want to travel and enjoy other things life has to offer.

They have been running this ranch 24/7 for many years.  It is not as easy, and glamorous, as you might think. Can you imagine having to get up at the crack of dawn to meet your guests as they arrive for breakfast every morning?  Then organize the activities, make sure everyone is having fun, oversee the business of the ranch, etc. At the end of the night making sure you are still awake to tell your guests, having a nightcap in the Cantina, good night before turning in?  Talk about a long day, everyday.  They have wonderful staff that come back year after year because of the way they are treated.  Even in the winter, when it is closed to the public, they need to care for all of the horses and other animals, as well as continue to run the ranch.

I hope you will visit Rex and Aileen before they sell this beautiful ranch.  If you go, tell them I said hi.  If you, or someone you know, has interest in buying this ranch, please let me know.   I’m selling the ranch for them.

Please enjoy this video of the ranch.


Can anyone explain why the USDA will NOT step in and help the dogs and puppies in the mills? There has been so much evidence of mills abusing and neglecting these animals.  Many of these animals are dying horrible deaths.  Most people have heard about these atrocities.  The flip side, they go into a pet store to buy something for their animal. When they are there they see the poor puppy eyes looking at them.  At that very moment they feel they need to buy this puppy and give it a good home.  They forget where the puppy came from.   It is a vicious cycle.  I like what they have done in West Hollywood California.  The stores only sell puppies that come from shelters or rescues.  Click here to learn how you can do the same thing in your community.

This past week there was a report about the USDA failing to cut down on puppy mills.   They detail the horrific conditions and lax enforcement.  If you would like to read this article, click here.

There was also a show on Animal Planet that exposed Petland puppies. Since the airing of that show they have had so many people coming forward telling them stories about the health issues, and medical challenges, their puppies have had. In addition, the cost to care for these animals.

So many stories were sent in describing what it has been like for the owners of these puppies since they purchased their new family member.  The stories include Bailey, a Cairn terrier (pictured here), who became deathly ill and had to be hospitalized after she was purchased in Texas, and Little Red, who reportedly had the worst hip dysplasia her veterinarian had ever seen.

On the positive side, hopefully this show will get people to do more research on the stores and breeders of  puppies.  Even people in your community might have a small mill going and you don’t even know it.

If you would like to read more about this, or know of a puppy that you want to report because they have medical issues, click here.

Over the past few weeks I have had so many conversations regarding our world and where we are headed.  I have always said, “Humans are blessed with an exceptional brain.  We have made wonderful advances in technology, medicine, etc.  At the same time, we also seem to use it to destroy the world and harm innocent animals.  Right now we are harming and destroying at the same time (oil drilling, polluting the waters and killing all kinds of fish and wildlife).

I came up with the name of my show, “Animal Connection” because I know animals and humans are connected.  I never realized the timing of my show would be so perfect with the events going on in our society, in such an extreme way.  One major issue, once we destroy this earth that’s it.  No matter how much money anyone has, we can’t replace it!

The animals were here long before we were.  We should respect them and not use them for profit.  Someone said to me, “We should go back to the times of Little House on the Prairie”.  I’m starting to believe that’s not such a bad idea, although it was a very hard life!

I don’t know what the answer is.  We don’t seem to be able to get along and respect other humans (look at the wars).  How do we expect people to respect animals?

May is the beginning of summer.  For many it is also a challenging time because of the winter coat they have put on.

For those of us who have the pleasure of owning a pet, the benefits are fairly obvious. Pets offer unconditional love, listen to us without offering needless advice, and make fantastic snuggling companions. There is nothing like coming home to someone who is genuinely excited to see you and who wants nothing more than a chew toy for Christmas. But for all of the love we give them, we also seem to give them a lot to eat. Approximately 50 percent of the pets in this country are overweight—and with roughly 30 percent of the U.S. population also being overweight, we could all use a little more exercise! One possibility overlooked by pet owners is to recruit your pet as a workout buddy, which is odd, since pets will always show up and won’t complain about how hungover they are. Let’s look at some ways you can involve your furry friend in sweat-inducing activities that will leave you both reaching for the water bowl.

1. Get outside.

Most of us are aware of the vast benefits of spending time outside on a daily basis. If you have a dog yet lack a large yard, being outside becomes a requirement. So if you have to walk your dog several times a day, why not use the time to your benefit as well? Try to speed up your pace along your normal route. Try alternating your quick pace with some speed walking or a light jog. Find a route that includes some hills or other challenging terrain.  Add some high knee lifts, butt kicks, or lateral skipping if you are not embarrassed by public displays of exercise. Or simply try adding 5 minutes onto your quick-paced walk every week, until you are up to an hour. The added calorie burn will be worth it.

If you are a bit more daring, try hiking or running with your dog. There is the obvious increase in caloric expenditure for both of you, but also an increase in cardiovascular and muscular output that will definitely pay off. Look for soft surfaces—like a trail or dirt track—to help protect your joints, and remember that HOT PAVEMENT IS REALLY PAINFUL FOR DOGS’ PAWS. Also, there are special harness-type leashes out there that keep your hands free and make running with more than one dog much more bearable.

2.  It’s all Fun and Games

Playing with your pet can be great exercise and fun for both of you. If you have a yard, or live near a local dog park, all of this is much easier. Of course, it can be done in your living room, but it might be a bit dangerous for the furniture. Try playing fetch, but race your dog for the ball. Just throw and start running. Or play tag by chasing your dog around the designated area. If your dog is on the strong side, grab a rope and try some tug-of-war. If you’re considerably stronger than your pooch, try tugging while standing on one leg, and using only one arm. Create an obstacle course, and run it with your dog. Find a ball and a wall, and play a version of handball mixed with “keep away”—from your dog. Practice your tennis swing and let your pup retrieve the ball.

Just doing something playful can make a normal workout feel like you are back on the playground with your four-legged best friend. How can it get better than that?

3.  Train the Dog or Train the Owner?

This is not a section on teaching a dog to sit or training your spouse to get you a drink from the fridge. This is about using functional resistance training to manipulate your mutt’s musculature, along with your own. Try the following exercises with some help from Fido.

Balance Challenge
Stand on both feet, hips-width apart, with your dog’s favorite toy in hand, but hidden from view. Shift your weight onto one foot, keeping the other foot’s toes just off the ground. Now show your pet a favorite toy. Try bending your standing leg and lowering the toy to touch the ground in front of you. Once you lose your balance, or your pup gets the toy, switch to the opposite leg.

Squat and Toy Press
For this exercise, use your dog’s favorite toy or a small weighted medicine ball. Start with your feet hips-width apart, and in a parallel position. Bring the toy or ball to your chest. Squat down deeply with your butt going parallel to the floor, and your knees staying behind your toes. As you extend your knees to stand back up, throw the toy or ball into the air, and try to catch it before your mutt jumps up and grabs it! Repeat until one of you gives out.

Sumo Squats for the Critter
This workout is similar to the Squat and Toy Press. Only this time, you start with your toes pointed slightly outward, making sure that your knees line up with your toes. Hold the toy or ball in both hands, with arms extended straight down toward the floor. As you bend both knees, bringing your seat parallel to the floor and keeping your arms straight, lift the toy directly over your head. As you straighten your knees, jump off the ground a few inches and return the toy to the down position. Hopefully, your mongrel will continue to jump for the toy until your quads have hit exhaustion.

Fetching Push-Ups
The idea is to set yourself up in a push-up position, with whatever modifications you require to do many repetitions (on your knees, against a wall, etc.). Lift one hand and throw a ball. Do as many push-up repetitions as possible until your pet returns. Repeat the toss with the opposite arm.

Laser Creature Crunch
Domesticated animals seem to be fascinated by laser pointers. Get into a comfortable crunch position on the ground, and hold the laser pointer in both hands. Begin doing 10 crunches with the laser on your chest, and of course, pointed away from you. Watch your pet go nuts trying to chase it in the process. Every 10 reps, alternate arm positions behind your head, above your head, and even to your knees. Your dog will go insane, and you will have abs of steel!

Dog Curl/Dip/Press
These options depend completely on the level of stillness your pet can provide. For my two dogs, playing dumbbell just ain’t gonna happen. But I have many friends with extremely trusting animals that love to be bench-pressed. Should you try to press, curl, dip, or lunge your best friends, do it relatively close to the ground, just in case they change their minds.

There’s a study that shows people with terminal illnesses are three times LESS likely to suffer depression if they own a pet. Pets are amazing stress reducers and loneliness decreases, and have actually been proven to lower blood pressure. They also make us more social creatures, as we meet new people on walks, at parks, etc. If you add a pet to your household, your life will be dramatically enriched. If you are unable to make a lifelong commitment, borrow a friend’s dog for a day, or look into a short-term fostering program. And there are hundreds of organizations out there that could use volunteers to walk the dogs they are sheltering. That way, you get some exercise, and make a difference at the same time. Whatever you do, integrate some canine or feline time into your exercise regimen, and watch the change occur. Now that is doggone good! Information provided by Stephanie Saunders

Click here for more health and fitness ideas.


I want Friday’s to bring awareness to other organizations that are doing wonderful things for animals. I also want to empower people. Please pass this link on to bring awareness to these wonderful organizations, thanks!

1. A French Journalist contacted me.  She wanted to know if I could send her true stories depicting peculiar relationships between a child and one or several wild animal(s).

Some examples:

* They’re going to tell the story of a little girl in South Africa looking after elephants with her parents in a sanctuary.

* Two little boys in India who protect snakes with their father and who are not scared to handle them. They’re “working” with their father at freeing the snakes they find in the cities to protect them.

They’re looking for a young girl or boy (aged under 15), fond of scuba diving, swimming with dolphins, whales…. In the end a child passionate in marine life.   Any histories are welcomed!!

One important thing: Their aim is not to promote proximity between wild animals and humans. They DO NOT want promote people taming wild animals!  They’re just looking for extraordinary stories relating a peculiar relationship between a child and an animal at a specific moment.

If you’ve heard about such stories you are welcome to contact Mélodie TISSOT directly.

melodie@maijuin.com

+33 1 58 05 16 60

+33 6 77 24 58 03

Www.maijuin.com

tigers2. Emergency Situation at Wild Animal Orphanage, San Antonio, Texas

The Board of Directors of The Wild Animal Orphanage in San Antonio, Texas, announces the existence of a financial, personnel, and management crisis at their sanctuary where more than 400 wild, exotic, and domestic animals reside.  The sanctuary has been in operation for 24 years and the decline in contributions along with the recent discovery of severe personnel and management issues have created this crisis.  Steps have been taken by the Board of Directors to resolve some of the problems including replacement of the CEO with an acting director, Mr. Jamie Cryer, a Texas businessman, who has willingly agreed to work without compensation to assure the feeding and care of the resident animals.

Funds are needed immediately to continue providing food and care for the lions, tiger, bears, wolves, cougars, primates, and other species that reside at the 2 sites of the WAO. Compassionate animal care-givers are still reporting to work to feed, clean, and care for the animals, however, there are no funds available for payroll and their pay is already several weeks behind.  Six of the animal care-givers are temporarily working without compensation. The Board of Directors is reaching out to all caring individuals and humane organizations to please step up to the plate and help us take care of these 400 animals that have no one to depend on except generous people.  To learn more and find ways you can help click here.

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be measured by the way its animals are treated.” — Mahatma Gandhi


3. Tragically, 50% of domestic violence victim’s delay seeking help for fear that an abuser will harm a pet… Animals are the silent victims of domestic violence. Most people treat pets as members of the family. Unfortunately, when it comes to domestic violence, pets are also deemed part of the family unit and forced to suffer in silence at the hands of abusers. Some studies estimate that: *50% of domestic violence victims delay seeking help out of concern that their pet may be harmed by the abuser. *88% of companion animals living in households where domestic violence occurs are routinely threatened, harmed or even killed. The ASPCA witnesses firsthand the connection between animal abuse and domestic violence. Just last month, police in Little Falls, NY, arrested Mark Beacraft, Jr., for assaulting a four-year-old child. The suspect has a history of violence—including a guilty plea in 2007 for murdering a neighborhood cat. He was sentenced to one year in a county jail but was later released under house arrest. This is unacceptable—and they need your help to keep criminals like Beacraft off the streets. The ASPCA works tirelessly to educate law enforcement and the public about the link between animal cruelty and domestic abuse and to lobby for stricter punishments for pet abusers. To help click here

4. May is National Arthritis Month

Just like humans, many dogs suffer from arthritis pain and inflammation as they age. Joints and bones naturally degenerate over time. Fortunately, arthritis can often be managed with the help of acupuncture, Traditional Chinese Medicine, supplements and nutrition. Natural and alternative therapies are generally safe, effective and can be used in conjunction with western medicine.

Ancient Solutions for Canine Arthritis is a site for dogs suffering from arthritis.

If you are an acupuncturist interested in learning more about treating arthritis in dogs with TCM, and getting continuing education credits, click here.

5. Best known for the  “I’m Tired of” bracelets, ITo introduced the No More Homeless Pets bracelet and now supports nine different animal causes. ITo will give half of every sale to Best Friends Animal Society to help support their efforts to dramatically reduce the number of homeless pets.

Best Friends Animal Society is guided by a simple philosophy: kindness to animals builds a better world for all of us. In the late 1980s when Best Friends was in its early days, roughly 17 million dogs and cats were being killed in shelters every year. Despite the commitment of shelter workers to the animals in their care, the conventional belief was that little could be done to lower that terrible number.  Read more about this on their site by clicking here.

6. If you live in California, or will be visiting, you might want to attend the “Power and Action for the Animals” May 9th Newport Beach, CA.

It’s a gathering of animal advocates, lovers, caretakers, guardians & protectors. Click here for more details.

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7. MOSCOW DOGS

I thought you might enjoy this story. Dogs are allowed on public transport in all of Europe, but generally with their master. This is even more interesting.

Here is a Canine commuter…. A wild dog waits on the platform!!

STRAY dogs are commuting to and from a city centre on underground trains in search of food scraps.  The clever canines board the Tube each morning.  After a hard day scavenging and begging on the streets, they hop back on the train and   return to the suburbs where they spend the night.

Experts studying the dogs say they even work  together to make sure they get off at the right stop after  learning to judge the length of time they need  to spend on the  train…

The dogs choose the  quietest carriages at the front and back of the train.  They have also developed tactics to hustle humans into giving them more food   on the streets of Moscow.

Scientists believe the  phenomenon began after the Soviet Union collapsed in the 1990s, and Russia’s new capitalists moved industrial complexes from the city centre to the suburbs.  Dr. Andrei Poiarkov, of the Moscow Ecology and Evolution Institute, said: “These complexes were used by homeless dogs as shelters, so the dogs had to move together with their houses”.

Because the best scavenging for food is in the city centre, the dogs had to learn how to travel on the subway to get to the centre in the morning, and then back home in the evening, just like people.

moscow dog 2

Here is an experienced dog enjoying a nap on the underground.  Dr. Poiarkov told how the dogs like to play during their daily commute.  He said: “They jump on the train seconds before the doors shut, risking their tails getting jammed”.  They do it for fun. Sometimes they fall asleep and get off at the wrong stop.

This dog is tired …  A mutt naps on tube seat in Moscow.

moscow dog 4

The dogs have learned to use traffic lights to cross the road safely, said  Dr. Poiarkov.  They use cunning tactics to obtain tasty morsels of shawarma, a kebab-like snack popular in Moscow.  They sneak up behind people eating shawarmas then bark loudly to shock them into dropping their food.

With children, the dogs play cute by putting their heads on youngsters’  knees and staring pleadingly into their eyes to win sympathy and scraps.  Dr. Poiarkov added: “Dogs are surprisingly good psychologists”.

The Moscow mutts are not the first animals to use public transport.  In 2006 a Jack Russell in Dunnington, North Yorks , began taking the bus to his local pub in search of sausages.  Two years ago, passengers in Wolverhampton were stunned when a cat called Macavity started catching the 331 bus to a fish and chip shop.

kidsIf you,or someone you know, needs a ferret sitter in the Sarasota area, please let me know.  I’ve had some people contact me about ferret sitting for them this summer.  I will be happy to do it.  The ferrets will be in a safe, free roaming environment.  The ferrets will also get a complimentary “spa treatment”  before they are picked up to go home (bath, clip their nails, clean their ears, massage, etc).  You can contact me for more information.

I want Friday’s to bring awareness to other organizations that are doing wonderful things for animals. I also want to empower people. The best way to do that, give people options so they can make a difference.  All of my posts give you options to help.  If you have information you want to share, send me a paragraph on the topic with a link to the website, by 11am on Thursday.  I will do this each Friday.  Please pass this link on to bring awareness to these wonderful organizations, thanks!

At the end of this post is a wonderful, entertaining, loving, inspiring video from National Geographic.

Daphne

My Adopter

1.  You’ve adopted animals but have you ever been adopted by an animal?  Here is a website where you can read stories about animals that have a happy ending.  Join the Story Club. It is totally free and safe. Just by joining you will be helping to save lives and ease the suffering of unfortunate animals.

Floyd the Dog writes, and encourages others to write, stories about animals and their interaction with each other and with humans. His concern and compassion for animals is the basis for the free website publication of these stories both here and on his Story Club.

Daphne adopted me. She hates the cold and was flying from the north of England, where she says she was born, to her winter home in the much kinder climate of southern Spain.  Click here read more about my adopter.

Greyhound Needing A Home

Greyhound Needing A Home

2. With the seasonal closing of the Melbourne track in Florida, it is wonderful how various Greyhound organizations have supported one another to ensure good homes for the Greyhounds. While Gold Coast Greyhound Adoptions has already fostered a handful from Melbourne already, they need additional foster homes.

Gold Coast Greyhound Adoptions is greyt to work with, as they pay for all expenses related to the care of the fostered Greyhound.  It includes food, medical, crate, etc.  All you do is supply the love.  It takes anywhere from 2 days to several weeks to find a home for a Greyhound.  You are not expected to adopt the fostered Greyhound, either.

Mombo Needs A Home

Mombo Needs A Home

If you are able to foster, or know of someone interested in fostering a Greyhound, contact Joanne at: joanne.wuelfing@gmail.com

Update—April 14, 2010: Congratulations, New Hampshire advocates! At around noon today, the New Hampshire Senate overwhelmingly voted to end greyhound racing in the state forever. We expect that the governor will sign the bill into law. Click Here To Keep It Enforced and get the bill passed in your state!


horse_transport_romania 1

3. This was sent to me by, Jacob Versnel, one of my contacts in the Netherlands. It’s a hard story to read but they are working towards a happy ending.  You can help.

No rest. No water. No care…  He traveled more than 1,000 miles to his death.

Bred only for food, he spent his life unloved and unnamed.  His final indignity was the tortuous journey from Romania to Italy to his slaughter.

Every year over 50,000 horses are transported from Eastern Europe to Italy for slaughter. Compassion has investigated the long distance transport of horses across Europe – we were shocked by what we found.

Just imagine being pushed and pulled into a truck, standing for hours on end, without water or a chance to rest. It is proven that horse welfare deteriorated after 8-12 hours of transport. Yet our investigators found that the truck filled with horses that they followed, traveled for over 24 hours.

What a sad reflection on modern Europe that this cruel practice is still allowed to continue. But you can help.

The final journey – When our investigators followed a truck transporting horses from Romania to Italy, they found the drivers broke an important EU regulation by not providing these animals with water. They also broke with basic human decency, in their cruel disregard for animal welfare.

If, like us, you believe that no farm animal should be transported for more than 8 hours, please support our work to end live transport and factory farming.

We want to stop to this heart-breaking disregard for animal welfare. Through investigations, lobbying and vigorous campaigning, we’re working to limit transports of farmed animals to 8 hours and ultimately to stop the long distance trade in live animals. At the very least, we want to see the existing welfare laws properly enforced.  YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE BY CLICKING HERE.

Tony the Tiger

Tony the Tiger

4.  The eye of the Tiger.  Have you ever heard of Tony The Tiger?  He does exist.

Tony the Truck Stop Tiger is a 9 y/o Siberian/Bengal tiger who has lived his whole life at a truck stop in Grosse Tete Louisiana. His home is one of concrete and steel. In Dec 2009 the Louisiana Dept of Wildlife and Fisheries granted a permit to Tony’s owner to keep him at the Truck Stop. This permit is valid for 1 year.

Tony’s living conditions are abhorrent.  He is not living the life of a Tiger. He urgently needs to be rescued and allowed to live out his life in a sanctuary. Big Cat Rescue will take him in.  Tony needs heros, click here to help.

The people who have Tony say that they have had him since he was a baby and he’d be traumatized if he were sent to live someplace else. They also say the Big Cat Rescue would not love, and care for him, the way they do. They say they are providing him a good home.   The owner, Michael Sandlin, says: “People from out of state are telling the most outrageous lies and half truths about Louisiana’s Tiger Truck Stop. When they came to the Parish Council Meeting to argue against my rights, they resorted to yelling and name calling, finally stooping so low as to demean me and my family by labeling us as “inbreds”.  Classy talk from supposedly sophisticated activists.”  Michael’s family and friends extended every courtesy to those people and were repaid with ugly slurs and hate speech.

Please let us know your thoughts and ideas to resolve a situation like this.  There are a lot of issues like this in the US and around the world.

seal 5. They lay on an ice pan, just a few feet apart — two seal pups sleeping quietly, blissfully unaware that a sealing vessel was bearing down on them, just 100 meters away.

As painful as it is to bear witness to this horror, the people with HSUS know they have to keep going there — because every picture, video, and word that they send out to the world touches the hearts and minds of people and governments. That’s why the sealing industry doesn’t want them there. And that’s why they need your help.

Give now and your donation will be tripled by the Giant Steps Foundation and other generous donors.

Watch this video of the beautiful harp seal nursery to see what your donations and support are working to protect.

dolphins6. “The Cove”, a documentary and winner of audience awards across the world, including Sundance, SilverDocs and Hot Docs. The Cove follows a team of activists and filmmakers as they infiltrate a heavily-guarded cove in Taiji, Japan. In this remote village they witness and document activities deliberately being hidden from the public: More than 20,000 dolphins and porpoises are being slaughtered each year and their meat, containing toxic levels of mercury, is being sold as food in Japan, often times labeled as whale meat.

Under the direction of the film’s Ric O’Barry, Save Japan Dolphins.org/Earth Island Institute is actively working in Japan to shut down this brutal practice.

There are ways you can help make a difference.  You can donate here or you can send letters, emails, sign petitions or help in other ways.  Learn about other options here.

martina7. What will happen to the rescued animals that Martina Navratilova has at the sanctuary she owns, but is selling?

Martina and her partner were very much in love when they paid more than $1 million for land where they could rescue 26 malnourished cows likely to be made into dog food.

They bought the land through their new company, MT Nest. M stood for tennis legend Martina Navratilova; T was her partner, Toni Layton.

The couple turned the 20-acre site in East Sarasota County into a sanctuary where about 100 cows, horses, pigs and other animals, many saved from slaughter, could live in peace.

But in 2008, the couple split and Navratilova threw Layton out of her luxury home on Casey Key, a claim by Layton based on lawsuit records.

Now Layton and other local animal lovers say Navratilova plans to sell the sanctuary and the animals with it. Animal activists who placed animals there are worried they will now be sold to farmers and slaughtered for meat.  Read the whole story here.

monkey-dog-water8.  Watch this video that was on National Geographic.  It is funny, heartwarming, educational and something that will make you feel good all over.


the-3-monkeysI recently had a veterinarian in India contact me.  He brought up the subject of using animals for the benefit of scienceHe wanted to get feedback from people around the world. This is a very controversial topic.  On one side people are all for it.  They have a family member that is very sick, or they are sick themselves.  They would like to find a cure before they die.  On the other hand there are people who say, why should lots of animals die trying to find a cure for humans?  Aren’t animals living, caring, feeling creatures too?  There is still another side, why not do the trials on humans?  There are people who would not have a problem doing this as long as they were financially cared for and all related expenses were taken care of for them.  The challenge, it’s illegal in the US.  I’m not sure about other parts of the world.

So what is the answer? Here are a number of responses I have received from around the world.  You can read more of these comments, and join a group that I started by clicking here. The group is for people who want to share their thoughts, ideas and stories about animal organizations, charities or issues. We also want to get ideas and feedback on things people can do to help.  We are already inundated with the negative things going on in the world.  Let’s come up with some solutions that people can implement in their own lives.

film

This new group is also for people in the film, TV, media industry.  I want to find ways to spread the word on some of the wonderful solutions people come up with.  The show, Animal Connection, will be a series bringing a lot of these things to the forefront to be shared around the world.

rat

Here are some recent comments:

1. Kim: I am not a Dr. therefore my viewpoint is tilted and objectivity is lost. More and more research is showing us that animals are sentient beings and do feel pain and suffering.

That being said, if one of my children were suffering and there was a cure that required animal testing to determine it’s effect, then obviously my point of view would be altered…therein lies the dilemma.

2.  Dr. Mishar: Definitely there are developments on certain area where animal models can be replaced by tissue culture. I think, it’s used wherever it can be. However, we are far from developing a model to replicate human biosystem which is a human being only.

Now the issue is with Animal drug development. We did a historical analysis to get a result that nearly 60% of animal drugs are translated from human pharmaceuticals. Faster the human drug development, faster the translation into veterinary products for animal’s ailments. Drugs like Vancomycin are also available for animals after successful launch for human beings. Animal pharma market is not as attractive as human pharma to invite heavy investment for new drug development. Mostly animal pharma gets benefited from human focused pharma innovations. Recently one drug named Carprofen with minimum side effect in human beings got translated for animal’s use also. This drug can actually reduce the side effect of earlier drugs and can reduce animal pain with minimal side effect.I being a vet and running a clinical research organization for animal’s well being, vouch for faster human drug development which can in turn help animal world.

Now the debate remains and I agree with you Kim and Vanessa, wherever substitute available, it has to be explored first before even thinking about animal trial. Just in case of unavailability of alternatives, don’t we think that a faster development of human drugs actually helps animals also?   Please feel free to give your views and all type of perspectives.

3.  Vanessa: You give a very interesting perspective on the matter. I don’t think that the fact that medication for animals can be developed sooner by animal testing should be a justifiable reason to do so.

I will admit that I do not know a lot about this and there are probably a lot of facts unknown to me however here are my thoughts. I am a mother of 7 children and blessed that all are in perfect health. However, if one of my children had a life threatening illness, I would want anything that could be done to save them to be looked at.

Please don’t get me wrong, I am very careful over the name brands I purchase –I make sure they are environmentally friendly and non-animal tested. I have also been a vegetarian for the past 13 years because I would never want another animal to die for me when I can easily substitute the meat. I also have 10 animals at home that I completely love and cherish.

So hypothetically speaking, if there was a lift threatening illness where the only way scientist knew how to create a cure is through animal testing, I can understand the reasoning. However, if you are talking about creating a medication for something more superficial such as medicine to make you look younger or to help someone’s seasonal allergies, then I can not see that as reason enough for it.

4. Rose: I also do not have a medical background, but my line of work does put me in touch with animals in the environment of energy healing and animal communication.

I respect the perspectives of everyone here, but have a slightly different one. Animals are sentient beings who feel many of the same emotions we do and feel physical pain. They understand and accept being part of the food chain as natural, however experimentation on animals is not natural, it is something that mankind has developed for personal benefit. I feel that animals have the right to decide if they wish to volunteer for experimentation just as humans do. This is a question of ethics, science has determined that animals think and feel, why should we subject them to terrible quality of life for our benefit? It my belief that we should put more money into finding ways to prevent many of the illnesses that are caused by how we treat our bodies, the earth, and our food sources rather than into drug research.

I do not have children, but I do have sisters, and a father who died of cancer. I still feel that experimentation on animals is wrong for any reason. Just because you can do something does not mean you should.

5.  Carolyn: I understand and respect everyone’s reasoning, this is probably going to be a really interesting conversation!

Personally on both an intellectual and an emotional level I am strongly against the use of animals for testing, especially in the development of cosmetics. This is not only from an animal welfare point of view. I started in on this when I was very, very young. I was pretty rabidly anti-vivisection and testing purely for welfare reasons, and then went on to research more about the viability and “sense” of animal testing.

So far our conversation has focused on drug development/testing. It is my understanding that using animal tests to model drug effects can give dangerously misleading results. i.e. thalidomide.

There are many other ways in which animals are being used for medical research and development.

As far as I remember, nobody has yet talked about other uses of animals in medical/scientific research. As an example- the mouse who had an ear grown on his back.

Where are the boundaries for everyone else here?

If we remove the outright tortures of draize testing, toxicity testing, deliberately poisoning animals or creating tumours etc in animals, what views do all of you have on this issue?

Will an appropriately human based medium for testing and research etc ever be developed when world leaders are religiously and and/ or anthrocentrically obsessed to the point of banning stem cell research etc?

P.S  Dr Mishrah I somehow had the idea that university students in the UK do sometimes “volunteer” (and sometimes get paid) to participate in drug/chemical trials. Is this correct?


dogHave you ever thought about going on vacation but you’re concerned about what to do with your pet?  How about taking your pet with you?

It is estimated around 85% of pet owners travel with their pets by car. If you’re planning to take your pet with you on trips in the car, start early when the pet is young so they get used to the routine.   Short jaunts across town and back, or easy day trips, will get your pet used to the ride.  A carsick pet can make the trip miserable for everyone.

driving with pets

A seat upholstery protector, such as a pet hammock or waterproof seat cover will make clean-ups easier in case your pet does get sick or has an accident.

Be sure to bring along cleaning supplies to avoid having to search out a place to purchase them at the last minute.

If you are going to be riding on buses or trains you need to check the state and local restrictions. Some prohibit pets from riding on buses or trains unless they are assisting visually impaired or physically challenged persons. Always check in advance with these transportation providers to find out what regulations they may impose.

emergency

Before you travel with your pet, check with your veterinarian to make sure your pet is physically able to make the trip. Some senior or physically impaired dogs and cats do not travel well. You may want to consider a local, reputable kennel for your pet, or if your pet is would be more comfortable at home, you may want to contact a pet sitting organization to locate a pet sitter in your area who can take care of your pet in its own, familiar surroundings.

If you decide that your pet is able to take the trip there are still a number of things to consider.

international travel

Traveling with pets internationally can be much more challenging than domestic travel with pets because of long waiting periods, quarantine requirements and other importation regulations. If you are considering traveling internationally with your pet, it’s important to begin planning way ahead of your intended time of travel. Proper planning will help better prepare you and your pet for the trip, lessen the stress on both of you and provide realistic expectations of international pet travel.

Here are a few things you should think about:

  1. What types of airline restrictions do you have for international pet travel?
  2. Do you limit the number of pets allowed in cargo and in the cabin?
  3. Are certain breeds of pets not permitted or not advised to travel internationally?
  4. What are the container requirements?
  5. Will my pet have to change planes?
  6. Will my pet be able to relieve himself somewhere if it is a long flight?
  7. When and where should I drop off my pet?
  8. What documents will I need to transport my pet?
  9. Where will my pet clear customs?

pet travel

What do you do if your pet needs emergency care, at home or while you are away? What if your pet gets lost or even worst, what if there is a disaster in your area?  You will need to find resources for all of these issues.

We can help you find answers to these and other issues.  If you have suggestions you have used for your animals, please post them so that other pet owners can learn from your experience.

Animal Connection Pic

Please join our new group on Linkedin.  Click here go to that group.

People are discussing animal issues around the world as well as thoughts on distribution from people in entertainment, social media, film, etc.

Here are a few of the current topics that were started by members:

1. I am living in Asia (Vietnam). In this part of the world, people use to eat domestic animals like dogs… How can we react to that? Do we have to react to this habit?… Don’t we also eat domestic animals, like horses? Can’t we compare the relationship of horse to man with the dog’s one?…

The cultural (mis-)understanding is a problem we can find in all aspects of the life!…

Could you be interested in such an approach?… We could produce a series about such problems everywhere in the world!…. What do you think about that?

2. Marketing Animal Issues around the world can be a challenge. Below is a link that helps with some thoughts. If you have other thoughts or feedback please share them.

http://cheetahlink.wordpress.com/2010/03/23/animal-health-marketing-marketing-roi-measuring-roi-online-marketing/

3. Where I have lived most of my life, roaming dogs have always been a rare experience. In my travels though I have found some areas have a greater amount of wandering pets than others. Most obvious was on a recent trip in the South West where I was overwhelmed by a great number of loose dogs. …obviously many were accustomed to the begging lifestyle.

I assume economics play heavily into this situation, but I wonder how much of it could be due to their cultural animal human relationship.

4.  Established in 1977, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society (SSCS) is an international non-profit, marine wildlife conservation organization. Our mission is to end the destruction of habitat and slaughter of wildlife in the world’s oceans in order to conserve and protect ecosystems and species.

Sea Shepherd uses innovative direct-action tactics to investigate, document, and take action when necessary to expose and confront illegal activities on the high seas. By safeguarding the biodiversity of our delicately-balanced ocean ecosystems, Sea Shepherd works to ensure their survival for future generations.

Please join Linked Sea Shepherd NL at:   http://www.linkedin.com/groups?about=&gid=1807037&trk=anet_ug_grppro

4. I’m in Tidewater VA off the Chesapeake Bay.  The animal-culture here in the SE-USA is not comfortable or familiar to me; dogs often live in yards, even in gorgeous wealthy enclaves with waterfront views + deepwater slips for the family boat, the dog may live outside… which is bizarre to me.

The neighborhoods with roaming dogs here are poor; they are also the neighborhoods that tend *not* to S/N. :—( which of course means the roaming pets are more-often intact, and litters result.

One non-profit is providing FREE s/n for residents of one large neighborhood, every Friday; U sign-up for a block-appt, drop off the dog or cat at 8-AM, pick em up after 1 to 2-PM, all done.

One woman here must have 20 cats, and most are tuxedos; I swear U could make a bed-throw for a twin-bed from her intact-adults, all in black + white. if they ALL breed, by this Sept U could make a bed-throw for a double-bed of black-and-white pelts.
Heartbreaking, crazy, they are slinking under cars, jumping into dumpsters, its incredible.

I am dropping $100 on a commercial-grade 3-ft long double-ended live-trap; I am going to catch + desex every cat I can get into the trap, get their ears notched, and bring them back.

I cannot BEAR to see this new-crop of kittens get winnowed by illness, HBC, fights + abcesses, dogs attacking them, poison… its too much. so I am going to take EVERY roaming intact cat + get them done…  their nominal *owners* of the few that supposedly have homes have not even gotten them rabies-vaxed, and rabies is ** very! ** very hot, here. :nonod:

With a chip + notched ear, their rabies-status will be able to be publicly tracked. the initial shot is annual; after that, they only have to come in every 3-years. most will not make it more than those 2 shots, to tell the truth.

If any that come in are friendly, i will do my best to get them *indoor* homes.
the kittens are sometimes salvageable, if U get them early-enuf.

Girding my loins, ;–) wish me luck… and no bites or scratches, I hope!


tigerToday there are believed to be fewer than 2,500 breeding adult Tigers left in the wild, and their numbers are declining. Tigers are listed as Endangered by the IUCN.

A friend of mine is getting ready to do a documentary about these Tigers and made me aware of this horrific practice.

The greatest threats to Tigers are habitat loss, poaching and lack of sufficient prey.

Once found across Asia, from Turkey to eastern Russia, over the past century Tigers have disappeared from south-west and central Asia, from Java and Bali in Indonesia and from large parts of South-east and East Asia.

Tigers have lost 93% of their historic range, and more than 40% of their range in the last decade. Much of the remaining habitat is becoming increasingly fragmented.

Today, Tigers are found only in Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Russia, Thailand and VietNam, and possibly in North Korea.

Tiger poaching

Tigers, and numerous other species of endangered wild life, have to contend with poaching! Regardless of the tigers’ classification as a “Critically Endangered” species, the demand for its parts has drastically increased at an alarming rate since the end of the 20th Century. The tiger is primarily killed to supply underground black markets with its organs, pelts and bones. These items are highly regarded in eastern medicine, claiming to posse’s capabilities to heal all sorts of human illnesses and dysfunctions. In addition, this regal and magnificent symbol of nature’s beauty and power is hunted recreationally for sport/trophies, perceived fear, and just out-rite ignorance! Unfortunately, poaching is not isolated to any one subspecies or population. All tigers, no matter were they live, seem to be under attack!

tiger-penis-formula

The import and exportation of tiger parts is a sizable business.  The penis sells for $6,000 (USD in 2008) which is used in a soup as an aphrodisiac.  Dried white tiger penis is worth even more. It is probably the most expensive piece of animal material in the world and probably the reason for the deaths of many magnificent wild tigers.   A large number of Chinese still believe that the body parts of animals can cure their ailments. And the doctors who practice traditional Chinese medicine haven’t yet decided to do what they do in the west, substitute animal parts for man made ingredients.  Despite the widespread availability of aspirin, a highly effective pain killer and indeed many other pain killers, many Chinese prefer to ingest crushed tiger bone for pain relief.

This practice takes place in China, Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia and the other Asian countries.  In 1990, over 4,180 pounds of tiger bones were exported from Taiwan to Japan. Documented records from the Korean government state that over 8700 pounds of tiger bones were imported into South Koreas from Indonesia.  In Hong Kong black markets, venders sell a pound of powdered tiger humorous bone sells for over $1700.

Tiger snow

Other tiger body parts are believed to do the following to the person who consumes them:

  • 1. Heart – gives strength and courage
  • 2. Tail – body rub for skin problems
  • 3. Bones – put in wine for rheumatism
  • 4. Brains – body rub to cure acne
  • 5. Eyes – turned into pills for epilepsy
  • 6. Whiskers – cure for toothache

It is still cheaper to kill and export the body parts of a wild tiger than to farm them.  At this rate how long will it take for their complete extinction in the wild? Keep in mind that all of these so-called treatments are completely unproven by science and have absolutely no real medical value.

How is man considered to be of superior intelligence compared to these animals when this happens?

If man has no respect for such a remarkable animal as the tiger, how can mankind be expected to protect all of the other animals, plants and wild places sharing the planet with us?  One way to help, don’t purchase items made from animal parts or made by animals (elephant paintings).

Many organizations are in need of volunteers to help save these animals and educate the public.  To learn more about the tigers and things you can do,  go to these websites:

Wildlife 1

Traffic

Tiger Homes

Links: