|May 28, 2015
Texans are proving they don’t leave anyone behind when the going gets tough – not even other people’s pets.
Lives have been lost, property demolished, and countless pets have been displaced throughout the destruction that took place this week from devastating floods that ravaged southern Texas.
When an Austin animal shelter put out a desperate plea on Monday via Facebook, saying it was “WAY over capacity,” Texans rallied to help.
The operators of Austin Pets Alive! alerted the community they had nowhere to put their current animals, let alone the numerous pets that were being brought there as a result of the storms.
Pictures of the shelter show much of the center under water. “This is why we need your help,” the operators wrote. “We are DESPERATE to get animals out of the center.”
It didn’t take long before a line of volunteers formed offering to help with safe refuge for animals until their families could be found.
“Austin, you are AMAZING!” the shelter wrote.
The operators said they will keep all of those concerned – and there are many – updated throughout the restoration process.
“We are so humbled by the outpouring of support we have received over the last few days. A huge THANK YOU goes out to the everyone who has donated, adopted, fostered, volunteered, and came together to care for the families and pets affected by the recent storms.”
Several volunteers posted heartwarming updates of their own:
May 28, 2015
Okla. resident contracts rare, tick-borne Bourbon virus An Oklahoma resident contracted Bourbon virus, a tick-borne disease recently discovered in the U.S. that has infected only one other person in the country. The Oklahoma resident recovered. Symptoms of Bourbon virus are similar to those caused by other tick-borne diseases, including fever, aches and a rash. The Oklahoman (Oklahoma City) (5/28)
May 25, 2015
Humane Society list points to Kansas as second-worst ‘puppy mill’ offender Animal health commissioner: Most licensed breeders accused by HSUS ‘pretty good’
By Samantha Foster
The Humane Society of the United States recently released a report that cites Kansas among the top two states with an alarming number of animal welfare violations by commercial breeders, but the state’s animal health commissioner says such accusations are far-flung.
This year’s “Horrible Hundred” list alleges at least 16 commercial breeders in Kansas — referred to as “puppy mills” by the Humane Society — have violated animal welfare statutes, with animals being found in filthy conditions or in need of veterinary care. Just one state, Missouri, topped that number, with 23 such facilities appearing on the Humane Society’s list.
“Missouri and Kansas continue to have the greatest number of problem dealers for the third year in a row,” the report claims.
Bill Brown, animal health commissioner for the Kansas Department of Agriculture, says his department looks at the list but doesn’t pay much attention to it. The KDA knows most of the licensees listed are “pretty good,” he said, and the Humane Society takes violations recorded during inspections out of context and blows them out of proportion….
May 26, 2015
Colo. resident diagnosed with tularemia A Fort Collins, Colo., area resident was diagnosed with tularemia, also known as rabbit fever, after apparently contracting the bacteria while gardening. Sixteen human cases of tularemia occurred in Colorado last year, and one was documented in 2013. The disease has been seen in the area recently among dogs, a cat, a prairie dog, a vole and rabbits. The recent increase may be due in part to a drop in populations of animals that prey on small mammals, experts say. The Coloradoan (Fort Collins, Colo.) (tiered subscription model) (5/26)
May 21, 2015
What to do about a spraying cat Veterinarian Jeff Kahler says a cat that sprays urine on surfaces other than the litter box doesn’t have to be banished to the outdoors. A veterinarian should examine a spraying cat to rule out disease such as kidney or bladder problems that can cause discomfort and abnormal urination. Behavioral scenarios that might lead to spraying include changes in the home or a new cat in the neighborhood. Sometimes the cause can’t be pinpointed and pharmacological intervention may be warranted. The Bellingham Herald (Wash.)/The Modesto Bee (Calif.) (5/20
May 21, 2015
Study gets the scoop on cat poop Researchers at the University of California at Davis are studying cat feces to learn more about the feline microbiome. The microbes living in the gut of an animal can affect digestion, the immune system and behavior, said researcher Holly Ganz, and could have a role in diabetes, obesity and other conditions. A crowdfunding project dubbed “kittybiome” collects donations of money and feline fecal samples, then shares data with donors about their cat’s microbiome. LiveScience.com (5/18)
May 21, 2015
New strain of rabies discovered in N.M. fox Officials in New Mexico said a previously undocumented strain of rabies has been identified. Using genetic sequencing of a sample taken from an infected fox, scientists found a strain that resembles but is distinct from the virus carried by bats. A woman bitten by the fox received post-exposure prophylaxis and did not develop rabies. Dead animals in the area will be collected and tested. New Mexico state veterinarian Paul Ettestad said finding a novel form of rabies is unusual. Albuquerque Journal (N.M.) (free content) (5/19)
May 21, 2015
Reported by: Erik Avanier
Published: 5:17 pm
Updated: 6:54 pm
CHATTANOOGA, Tennessee(WDEF) – A new law aimed at preventing people convicted of animal abuse may not be as strong of a law as animal advocates had hoped.
When the Animal Abuser Registration Act was first written, the intent was to make sure people convicted of animal abuse went on a TBI registry.
But before the act was signed into law, it was amended to only place felony convictions for animal cruelty on the registry.
“In my opinion it’s not strong enough to be able to capture the group of people we want to look at, which are the animal abusers; whether it’s neglect and abuse or something much more serious,” said Chattanooga Humane Educational Society Executive Director Bob Citrullo.
“Many of these case get pleaded down just to get them through the courts and it’s tough in these animal cruelty cases because a lot of resources are needed to investigate and seek prosecution,” Said McKamey Animal Center Executive Director Jaime McAloon.
Animal Advocates say Josesph Gann is the prime example of why animal abusers should be placed on the TBI animal abuse registry. The 39-year old is accused of beating a dog to death with a hammer and feeding another small living dog to a pit bull.
“I think we have a shot to get this elevated to a felony. That’s what my hope,” Citrullo said.
If convicted of felony animal abuse, Gann would be placed on the TBI registry for two years. The registry would keep him from legally owning a pet during that duration. But If his case is pled down to a misdemeanor, he would be free to walk into animal shelter to adopt a pet without being rejected because his name would not appear on the registry.
People who are convicted of animal hoarding or neglect will also not end up on the list because those crimes are misdemeanors.
Neglect and hoarding falls under the category of animal abuse but their not considered heinous enough to warrant a felony.
“People who abuse animals still go to shelters and adopt more animals. That’s a fact,” McAloon said.
Animal advocates are worried the law is not strong enough to prevent another documented fact.
“It’s well documented that people who do this progress onto other things like murders and serial killings,” Citrullo said.
The new law takes effect nest January.
May 20, 2015
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May 20, 2015
Abandoned kittens cared for by male cat with cerebellar hypoplasia USA Today (5/19)