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Friday, August 04, 2006

More Bad News From China

There are plans for more brutal, street-corner slaughter of dogs because of a few rabies deaths. I'll say it again: IMMUNIZE; don't murder the animals.

Click here to read the story.

NOTE to anyone who couldn't access the teddy-bear story: I fixed the link, so try it again.

Critters Lost, Found, and Needing a Home

Three out of four as of 8/8 -- not bad! The Jack, the Pom and the Lab have found homes. Still need to find Milo.

1. Milo, a male, black/white shepherd mix, 47 pounds, neutered, about 1 1/2 years old. Lost in Medley. Call 305-608-7376.

2. Jack Russell mix, desperately needs home; owner very sick. Male, 6 years old, 13 pounds, ID tatoo, loves children, low maintenance. Call 305 871-4081.

3. Purebred male Pomeranian, 5 pounds, at least 8 years old, needs a home. Black with white paws and belly. Found abandoned beside a busy road in Homestead. Call 786-243-1066.

4. Yellow Lab, male, possible purebred, rescued from the Miami-Dade shelter, needs a home. About 3 years old, and healthy. Call 954-326-8650 or 954-577-8543.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

This Comment is Too Good Not to Highlight

In re: the naughty guard dog. A comment from blog reader dogncatmom: "Even though it's not really funny, I found it just that - quite funny. I, too, was a "victim" of bear-a-cide. Actually it was all my stuffed animals within reach of a canine mouth - she tore all the eyes out, then ripped their throats out - seemed to me she had a statement to make...hmmmmmm."

Bear-a-cide! (I thought it was funny too).

Glad Mine Just Like to Carry Around My Flip-Flops

Talk about dogs behaving badly! A British guard dog (now doubtless headed for the canine unemployment line) went a little nutso at a children's museum and eviscerated nearly $1 million worth of collectible teddy bears. Click here for the story and caught-in-the-act photos.

Note the classically British understatement in a quote from the museum operator about a destroyed bear that once belong to Elvis (later bought at auction by an English aristocrat, who loaned it to the museum): "I've spoken to the bear's owner and he is not very pleased at all."

I say....

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

But Will It Get Them Into Harvard?

In certain social circles, obsessed parents believe that if their kids don't get into the right preschool, they're doomed to be rejected from Harvard and thus be condemned to a worthless life of poverty and menial labor. I come from New York City, and believe me, this is not much of an exaggeration.

Now there seems to be a pet equivalent: a Boston "puppy preschool" -$30 a day - so exclusive that applicants are rejected if they're "not very social...or wear polyester." That's a joke.

Click here for the story in the Boston Globe.

Nasty Story From China

What's the Chinese government's solution to a rabies epidemic? Not making sure that all dogs are vaccinated, but snatching pets right off their leashes and beating them to death. I wish I was making it up but I'm not.

Click here
to read the story.

Good Deal from the AKC

If you're planning to get a purebred pup and register with AKC, here's a new program that the organization is offering: First vet visit free with a Veterinary Network certificate. You have to register online. Click here for the site.

Now something of a disclaimer. I have a purebred (my Golden, which I inherited from a friend), but I also have three mutts - all of them strays - and it goes without saying that I love them equally. I'd never judge anyone who bought a purebred, but I have a strong inclination to rescues and shelter animals, most of which are mixed breeds (though shelters always have purebreds; during a recent visit to the Miami-Dade County shelter, I saw a Dalmatian, a couple of cocker spaniels, a beagle, a chocolate Lab, and all kinds of purebred cats).

Pet overpopulation is a tragedy, and a shame on the human race. When we domesticated animals, we made a deal with them: You protect and work for us, we'll take care of you. When it comes to overpopulation, we have not kept up our end of the bargain. In this country alone, an estimated 9 million euthanized dogs and cats pay the price for that every year. It's morally wrong.

The only way to reduce that number is to increase spay/neuter rates, shut down the puppy mills, and increase shelter/rescue adoptions. Please consider it when you're looking for your next pet.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Don't Mess With Midge

Short, as it were, for Midget, the newest K9 with the Geauga County Sheriff Department in Ohio. She's all of six pounds, which would make her a good hors d'ouvre for the department's more conventionally-sized canine cops.

The rat terrier/chihuahua mix is a drug sniffer, an occupation for which the nose is far more crucial than size.

To read a story about Midge (and see a hilarious picture), click here.

Two Huskies Need a Ride

Talk about collateral damage. Back in June, a freak accident claimed the life of a 22-year-old Florida Panhandle kid who was home watching tv when a car driven by an accused drunk driver CAME THOUGH THE ROOF and crushed him to death. Click here for the story. He had two Siberian huskies. His parents tried to hang onto them but, no longer able to live in their damaged home, have been forced to give them up.

Bobbie Weinstein of Miami-based South Florida Siberian Husky Rescue tells me that her group is trying to get someone to drive them down to Fort Lauderdale, where they will be treated by a vet then placed in foster care until an adoptive home opens up. They're now living at the Santa Rosa County animal shelter.

Bobbie says that Sky and Austin are probably 1 and 2 years old, and she'd like to keep them together.

Click here
to visit the rescue group's site. And if you can help with transportation (or adoption), e-mail

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Farewell to Wilma (not the hurricane; the dog)

This is my first obituary of an animal. And she deserves it.

Wilma, the mascot of the Herald's late-Saturday "bulldog" edition, has passed away. She was the longtime companion of my friend Lori Durham, who manages the Herald's legal office.

Lori is a statuesque blonde. Wilma was squat and portly, and made you laugh out loud just by existing. They were inseparable, and I mourn for my friend.

Click here to read the obit.