Category Archives: National Animal News

Officer Picked Up Wandering 16-Year-Old, Matted Dog – Then Shelter Found Pooch A Home

 

Recently, a police officer discovered a bedraggled, old dog wandering in Richardson, Texas. The officer picked up the stray pooch and got him to the Richardson Animal Shelter where staff went to work to rid his body of matted fur, overgrown nails, and a flea infestation.

The shelter learned that the “stray” dog was 16-years-old, and that he DID have an owner, but that person did not want him anymore. Mary Lovell, with the animal shelter, told WDTN News:

“We got in touch with the owner, who didn’t want the dog back. He said the dog was 16 years old and he’s had him since he was a puppy. The dog is completely deaf, and had known nothing but the yard he lived in his whole life, so he was reasonably timid in our care.”

Thanks to the shelter staff, Marty was washed, trimmed and dressed up for a social media shoot, and their efforts paid off – Marty found a home.

A woman with a soft spot for seniors saw Marty and fell in love! On September 9, the shelter alerted Facebook fans to the good news, writing:

Look 👀 who got adopted! Happy tails Marty!

 


 

Doctor Who Beat His Dog With A Hammer Will Be Sentenced On Felony Charges

A doctor, convicted of multiple counts of felony torture of an animal, will be sentenced next week in Dearborn County, Indiana. 58-year-old Joseph Stubbers III was convicted of the animal cruelty charges in July; the charges stem from a July 2019 incident when he attacked his own dog, Cooper, with a hammer.

Stubbers beat Cooper in the head with a hammer, and then shot the dog with a handgun, causing Cooper to lose an eye. Stubbers claimed that the five-year-old dog had attacked him, biting him on the arm, and that he used the hammer to stop the “attack.” But bite wounds were not observed on his arm by responding deputies.

As reported by Local 12 News, a neighbor who witnessed the incident said that,  “he saw Stubbers hitting Cooper the dog with a hammer so much it was causing the dog to actually vomit.”

Those who knew Cooper described him as a “gentle giant.” The injured dog was turned over to a local veterinarian, and animal welfare agencies for care.

Stubbers is the owner of Fairfield Primary Care; prosecutors have alerted the medical board about the charges that Stubbers has been convicted of.

Sentencing has been moved to September 14 in Dearborn Superior Court II.

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If I Close My Eyes, Will It Go Away?

The following is an editorial written by Penny Eims many years ago.

If I close my eyes, will it go away?

Gassing chamber use in parts of the United States to kill cats and dogs at animal shelters.

If I close my eyes, will it go away?

Heart-sticking of cats and dogs at some animal shelters in the United States.

If I close my eyes, will it go away?

Owners chaining their dogs, forgetting to feed them, or give them water. Many abused, most forgotten.

If I close my eyes, will it go away?

List after list after list of adoptable cats and dogs scheduled for euthanasia at over-crowded shelters.

If I close my eyes, will it go away?

Of course, the answer is no, but too many people do not want to see or hear about the horrors that happen to society’s unwanted, or neglected pets.

Too many good pet owners are content to live in their own bubble of contentment; enjoying their own well cared for cat or dog, but closed off to the horrors that befall the unlucky cats and dogs all around us.

If we close our eyes to abused children – the abuse does not stop. If we choose not to see the homeless or the hungry, their need does not go away.

I would encourage you to please get involved in some way. There are multiple ways for everyone to be involved.

Sign a petition that supports the end of heart-sticking and gas chambers for United States animal shelters.

Choose a local shelter that you visit and take photos for the flier – it’s easy and it helps.

Foster a homeless cat or dog – do not be one of the people who states that it is too hard to foster because you will be sad when the dog or cat is adopted. Because the harsh reality is that it is much harder to know that a dog or cat that you could have fostered was instead destroyed at an over-crowded shelter.

Adopt your next cat or dog. Do not buy your next pet from an irresponsible breeder or a pet store. Help stop the breeding madness that has taken over our society.

Spay and neuter your own pets. Do not contribute to the unwanted animals who are dying day after day.

Donate to a local cat or dog rescue, or to your local animal shelter. Visit Petfinder.com to find a shelter or rescue near you.

Report cases of neglect or abuse when you see it.

If you drive by a house with a dog chained to a tree, suffering through the elements without shelter, food or water – please pick up the phone and call animal control or the police and report the problem.

Don’t close your eyes and pretend that it will go away.

Help the rescue organizations who have taken in society’s cast-offs, or the abused dogs who have no one else to care for them.

Contact a local dog or cat rescue and find out if you can donate items, or perhaps help with transporting animals in need to/from foster homes, vet appointments, or even on cross-country road trips. Rescues are desperate for people that are willing and able to help. Once you try, you will realize just how easy it is to make a difference.

Bearing witness to animal cruelty is not an easy task, but closing your eyes to the problem will not make it go away.

Please do your part, in some way, to help those cats and dogs who do not have a voice. Please do not close your eyes.


Zookeeper From ‘Tiger King’ Found Dead

Erik Cowie, one of the zookeepers from the Netflix documentary series, Tiger King, was found dead in an apartment late last week. First reported by TMZ, law enforcement in New York City confirmed that the 53-year-old man was discovered on Friday, “face down in the bedroom of a residence.”

Cowie worked at the Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park in Oklahoma, alongside Joseph Maldonado-Passage, aka Joe Exotic, who is currently in federal prison serving a 22 year sentence for trying to hire people to kill animal rights activist Carole Baskin.

Cowie testified against Joe Exotic, telling jurors that Exotic had killed five tigers, and stated that he wanted to see Carole Baskin dead.

The cause of Cowie’s death has not yet been determined, but TMZ reports that he was a “heavy drinker” and that “a large bottle of vodka was found at the scene.”


Dog Rescued From Cave In Indiana Nature Preserve

On September 4, people exploring caves in Indiana’s Dewey Hickman Nature Preserve, made a shocking discovery. Deep in the pit of a 30-foot cave was an emaciated dog. The dog, dubbed Dewey, was rescued thanks to the good Samaritans.

The Harrison County Animal Control recounted how Dewey was saved:

The cavers rappelled down and were able to lift the dog out of the cave. The cavers believe that the dog now named Dewey may have originally been caught by his collar on a branch as he fell, as there appeared to be scratch marks about halfway down the shaft. We believe the dog was eventually able to wiggle free and dropped to the bottom of the cave.

The shelter believes that the dog may have been stuck inside of the cave for at least two weeks given the amount of weight he lost. The shelter explains:

Dewey is very thin and his collar is very loose, leading us to believe he had been in the cave long enough to drop a significant amount of weight.

They believe that an overturned turtle shell, which collected rain water, may have provided Dewey with the hydration he needed to survive.

On Monday morning, the shelter alerted Facebook followers to good news – it appears that the dog’s true owner has been found:

We believe we have found Dewey’s owner. His name is actually Hawkeye!! We will keep you all posted! We cannot thank the news media enough, without the news coverage we would not have been able to find the owner!!

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Terrified Dog Rescued From Beneath Collapsed Shed

A terrified dog, tethered to a chain and trapped beneath a collapsed shed, was rescued on September 1. The Louisiana SPCA posted photos of the trapped dog, and recounted the situation, and rescue effort.

The animal welfare agency writes:

Yesterday our team and Humane Rescue Alliance officers who volunteered to help here after Hurricane Ida were able to make an amazing rescue! While we were out in the field responding to calls of abandoned animals a resident flagged us down and led us to a dog trapped underneath a collapsed shed!
Our teams rushed to the scene, where they found a scared dog chained inside of the shed and tangled under the debris.

The rescue teams believes that the dog had been trapped beneath the shed since Hurricane Ida hit the area on Sunday. Amazingly, despite being trapped beneath the shed, the dog escaped injury – the shelter staff writes:

We carefully lifted the shed enough so we could guide the dog out from underneath and free him from the chain. Thankfully, and perhaps miraculously, the dog was not injured.

The neighbor, who alerted the rescuers to the dog’s presence, helped name the dog Bubbles. Once freed, the pup was extremely affectionate. The animal welfare agency said:

Bubbles was super friendly and sweet and became almost immediately affectionate toward his rescuers. Bubbles was transported to our shelter in Algiers to cool off and recover while we work to locate his owners.

Bubbles is one of many pets left stranded by the hurricane. Anyone hoping to support the Louisiana SPCA can do so by making a donation to them on their Facebook page.

(images via Louisiana SPCA Facebook page)

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Deputies Save Exhausted Dogs Who Were Stuck In A Swimming Pool

On August 24, deputies in Douglas County, Georgia, saved two exhausted dogs who were stuck in a swimming pool. The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office shared video of the rescue effort with Facebook followers on September 3, along with an explanation of what happened.

The law enforcement agency writes:

Sometimes to protect and serve requires going the extra mile. That’s just what Deputies Michael Aziz and Elias Johnson did on August 24th. They responded to a dog case at approximately 7:40 p.m. where they found 2 dogs treading water in a pool. The dogs could not get out and looked exhausted.

The deputies did not think the exhausted dogs would be able to make it long enough for animal control officers to arrive, so they took matters into their own hands.

The agency explains how the deputies improvised:

Dep. Aziz used a blanket to pull the first dog out of the pool and saved the second dog by pulling it out by the collar. Thanks to Deputies Aziz and Johnson these beautiful Huskies will be just fine.

It is unclear if the dogs that fell into the pool live at the residence, or if they wandered in and got stuck. But the dogs are safe thanks to the quick thinking of Deputies Aziz and Johnson.

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Persistent Rescuers Capture Cat With Duct Tape Roll On His Neck

A friendly cat, who managed to get himself into a big of a predicament, was rescued thanks to the persistent efforts of the The Quad Cities Animal Recovery Team. The team was alerted to the presence of a cat in LeClaire, Iowa, who had a duct tape roll around his neck.

On September 2, the rescue group recounted the effort to help the cat, writing:

We decided today that we were not going home without him. We tried trapping almost all day with no success. Then late tonight, he was out meowing away but bypassed the trap. We spent over an hour trying to get him to come to us but he just kept doing circles around us 10 feet away while rubbing on everything that came into his path and flipping over as if he wanted belly rubs. 😐

It took hours for the team to finally convince the kitty to go inside of the trap that had been set. The rescuers write:

We decided to try the trap again. He kept going only to behind it and trying to fight for the food through the bars with no success. He went to the front and rubbed his head on the trip door and closed it without him in it. 🤦🏼‍♀️ We continued trying by hand, and he continued doing circles. Three hours in, he finally went into the trap and after a very nerve wrecking minute, he tripped it!

Fortunately, the rescue group believes that nobody tried to purposely harm this cat; they explain:

We can confidently say that he most likely got the roll stuck on his own head. Aside from him not fully working with us and making his own head a bit bigger by turning it, it was relatively easy to pull off. He very much enjoyed neck scratches after that and was purring away while held! As soon as we let him down to roam in the house, he finds a spot to hide.

The cat is receiving his vetting, and for now, living in a foster home. The group will hold him for a short time to see if an owner comes forward; if not, someone has already spoken up and offered him a forever home.

Find the rescue group on Facebook here.

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Fire Crew Rescues Distressed, 31-Year-Old Horse Stuck Between Rock And Fence

A distressed, 31-year-old horse was recently saved by a fire crew in Patterson, New York. The horse, named Dozer, fell on August 25, and became wedged between a rock and fence.

The Facebook page for Patterson Fire Department No. 1 recounted the rescue effort to save Dozer’s life:

Patterson’s heavy rescue, 22-6-1 arrived on scene and found a 31 year old male horse, named “Dozer”, in distress. He had apparently fallen and managed to get himself stuck between a rock and a fence line. At first, the crew attempted to assist the horse on getting up by shifting his position. It became apparent that additional equipment was going to be needed to help Dozer out since he had become too exhausted to get up on his own. 

According to the fire department, rescuers discussed their options and decided to use a paratech bipod system to raise Dozer – they said it took “a lot of sweat and effort” by the crew to get Dozer back up on his feet.

After receiving fluids and resting, Dozer was able to “trot away, unassisted.”

This is Patterson Fire Departments 4th horse rescue in the past several years, all with successful outcomes.

The Department  commended those involved in the rescue effort:

We would like to thank Putnam Lake Fire Department, New England Equine Practice, the Town of Patterson EMS, and the New York State Police for all their assistance as well as Paratech Fire & Rescue Equipment for such amazing equipment.

(Photos Courtesy of Andrew Akin via Facebook)


Coyote Pup Rescued From San Francisco Bay

An officer with Animal Care & Control San Francisco managed to pluck a coyote pup out of San Francisco Bay this week. The animal welfare agency posted photos of the rescued pup to social media on Thursday, writing:

The cold coyote pup that went for a dip in the Bay is back with her family after being treated by our wonderful vet staff for hypothermia at Animal Care & Control. Fishing coyotes out of SF Bay in a net is a little unusual, but our Animal Control Officers take everything in stride. Officer Pone performed an amazing rescue from her borrowed boat!

As reported by San Francisco Gate, the pup was initially spotted in someone’s yard and animal control had been contacted because the pup appeared to be trapped. By the time the officer arrived to the area, another call came in that a coyote pup (believed to be the same pup) was stuck in the dock on Pier 39.

But when the officer approached the pup to help, he leaped into the water. With the help of a boat, the animal control officer was able to use a net to scoop the struggling pup out of the water.

According to KTVU News, “everyone fell in love” with the coyote, who was released after being dried off and warmed up.


Shelter Praises Senior Dog Who Bit Off Snake Head To Save Volunteer

A Florida animal shelter is praising the efforts of a senior dog named Chuck, who recently bit off the head of a venomous snake to save a volunteer. The Panhandle Animal Welfare Society shared Chuck’s heroics in a Facebook post on Tuesday, explaining what happened:

Chuck is not a “player.” He’s a laid back 11-year-old. Toys are not his thing anymore. So we were surprised Sunday when he started “playing” with something in the yard. Surprise turned to panic when we quickly realized it was a venomous snake. He bit its head off to protect a volunteer, and it bit back while being swallowed.

Unfortunately, Chuck did not escape the encounter unscathed. The snake managed to bite the 11-year-old dog before being killed, and Chuck has been struggling ever since. The shelter writes:

It’s been touch and go. Two rounds of antivenin! He’s doing better, but doesn’t want to eat. One of our caring volunteers just brought a variety of home-cooked snacks as enticement.

The shelter issued a plea for help for the four-legged canine hero:

Antivenin is expensive. Add the pain medications and antibiotics, and the vet bill is nearing $3,000.
Chuck also needs to recover in a quiet, comfortable foster home.
Can you help with the vet bill?
Can you foster? If so, email VickiM@paws-shelter.org. A home without kids or other pets is preferred.


Officials Hope That Dog Necropsy Will Provide Clue To Family’s Mysterious Death

Update: Officials have determined that the entire family, and presumably the dog, died from heatstroke.

Earlier this month, a mother, father, young child and family dog, were discovered deceased on a trail in the Sierra National Forest. The Mariposa County Sheriff’s Office released details about the mysterious deaths on August 17:

MISSING FAMILY FOUND DECEASED
The Mariposa County Sheriff’s Office began a Search and Rescue operation after a family was reported missing Monday night August 16th at 11pm.
Search teams located the family’s vehicle near the Sierra National Forest gate leading to Hites Cove in the Jerseydale area. A short time later the family; John Gerrish, Ellen Chung, one year old daughter Miju and the family dog were located deceased near the Devil’s Gulch area in the Southfork of the Merced River drainage.

The authorities were able to rule out homicide as the cause of death, and initially turned their attention to the potential of a toxic substance in the area. There were fears that noxious gases may have been released from abandoned mines in the area, but investigators ruled that out.

Autopsies were performed on the family, but there were no clues found and now investigators are awaiting necropsy results from the family dog, Oksi, with the hope that the outcome will shed light on the tragic mystery.

The bodies have revealed no obvious signs of death and investigators did not find a suicide note. Mariposa County Sheriff’s spokeswoman Kristie Mitchell told FOX News:

“Initially, yes, when we come across a family with no apparent cause of death, there’s no smoking gun, there’s no suicide note, there’s nothing like that, we have to consider all options. Now that we’re five days in, no, we’re no longer considering homicide as a cause of death.

Adding:

“There’s toxicology that we’re waiting for from the autopsies themselves, and then also from the [necropsy for the dog].”

Officials are testing nearby water sources to see if toxic algae are present.


Puppy Vaults Wall, Tumbles 30 Ft Down On The Other Side

 

An adventuresome pup got more than she bargained for after vaulting over a wall in Spokane, Washington. Eight-month-old Pebbles skirted death after her jump sent her 30 feet down near the Spokane River last Monday.

The City of Spokane Fire Department created a social media post about the rescue effort, writing:

This pup was saved by Special Ops companies on late morning of August 16th. It was struggling by the Spokane River near Huntington Park by below City Hall and received a helping rescue by firefighters.

And Pebbles’ owner, Raymond Ploski, added a few more details, while expressing gratitude to those who saved his puppy:

My 8 mos. old pup decided to vault a 3 ft wall to find a 30 ft drop on the other side! I thought she would be dead from such a fall. The Spokane FD were awesome – very responsive and funny as well.

It was the first time I’ve ever seen a hook & ladder in action. What an absolutely terrifying morning, a full day of x-rays, scans, and tests; and a very, very lucky ending. Pebbles survived without a scratch. Thank you, City of Spokane Fire Department and Pet Emergency Clinic!”

Great job Spokane Fire Department!

(Images provided by Spokane Fire Department via Facebook)


Shelter Offers Reward After Taking In Emaciated Puppy Who Was Abandoned At Apartment Complex

Associated Humane Popcorn Park Shelter, in Newark, New Jersey, is offering a reward for information about an emaciated puppy who was abandoned outside of an apartment complex in Newark on August 19.

The animal welfare agency has announced the offering of a $1,500 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of whoever is responsible for neglecting and abandoning the puppy, who has been dubbed Petunia.

In a release, the shelter explains what is known about the cruelty case:

“Animal Control for the city of Newark received the call at 3:51 p.m. to go out to the Grafton Avenue apartment complex to retrieve a puppy that was abandoned. The ACO spoke to a witness at the scene who stated that when she saw a car pull in, she assumed they were dumping trash but when they pulled away, there was a puppy tied to the fence. Unfortunately, there was no opportunity to get the license plate of the vehicle.”

The puppy was rushed to the shelter, where an exam revealed the extent of her injuries and pitiful state of health from being neglected:

“Our veterinarian estimates her to be approximately five months old and sadly, she weighs just 10 pounds.  She was covered in urine and feces, as well as blood.  Examination revealed her to be extremely dehydrated, so fluids were immediately administered.  Puncture wounds were discovered under scars that were crusted over which are likely the result of bites from another animal, and her teeth are in poor condition for such a young dog.  Her overall body condition is very poor but despite this, she has a strong appetite and is grateful for all the help that she’s receiving.”

Though Petunia has been subjected to unimaginable cruelty, she has maintained a sweet and loving disposition. The animal welfare agency writes:

“Petunia has been greeting staff members with kisses and craves to be held. She is probably the happiest, safest, and most cared for that she’s ever been, and we will do everything in our power to ensure that she has every chance at living a long, full, happy life in a wonderful home once she has recovered from the terrible treatment that she endured.”

If you have any information in this case, please contact our AHS Newark facility at 973-824-7080 or email: newark@ahsppz.org.


79-Year-Old Woman Attacked By Protective Mother Moose

A moose, believed to be protecting her calves, recently attacked a 79-year-old woman who was walking a dog outside of a home in Glenwood Springs, Colorado. The terrifying incident happened on August 13 – according to a release from Colorado Parks & Wildlife, the woman had seen the moose with two calves earlier in the day, but thought that the family had left the area.

The attack happened around 9 p.m. the same night after the woman, who was pet-sitting, took the dog outside on leash.  A witness stated that the moose was stomping on the elderly woman, who was injured badly enough that she had to be airlifted from the initial hospital that she had been taken to.

Area Wildlife Manager Matt Yamashita commented on the attack:

“The incident occurred in an area of quality moose habitat and it is known that the moose frequent this area year-round. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the woman. This incident was no fault of her own. Conflicts with moose can happen, even when you follow best practices for living in moose habitat.”

The cow believed to be responsible for the attack has been in the area for awhile; no previous signs of aggression had been reported. Wildlife officers attempted to locate the cow that was responsible for the attack, but gave up the search after failing to find the one that stomped on the woman.

Yamashita stated:

“This likely was an incident of a cow protecting her calves. Since Friday night we have been talking with the local residents to educate them about living in moose habitat, the potential dangers associated with interacting with moose and actions they can take to minimize the risk of conflict.”

(Stock image of moose and calf via Pixabay)


Lion Sanctuary Lets Animals Observe Humans Who Are Captive In ‘Cages’

A lion sanctuary in South Africa has turned the tables on what might be expected for wildlife observation. Rather than watching captive animals in an enclosure, tourists visiting the GG Conservation sanctuary, in Harrismith, have the opportunity to climb into a plexiglass cage which allows the big cats to safely get up close and personal with their human visitors.

The website for GG Conservation explains the 45-minute experience:

Day visitors who only enter to do the cage are wholly dependent on weather, dates, staff & management availability. We cannot guarantee how the lions will react but will endeavour to ensure you have a fantastic experience. 

Priority is given to overnight guests as we can only use the cage once a day. Cage experience starts at approx 6:30 am- 7:15 am at this time of year. 

OUR UNIQUE PLEXIGLASS HUMAN CAGE EXPERIENCE – 

Our unique cage is dual purpose. 

1- As a ‘professional photography cage’ – there are small gated windows able to open up for longer range shots of the lions further away, ideal for professional photographers who don’t want fences/bars or plexiglass in their shots. 

2- As an ‘experience’ – the circular ‘breathing holes’ in the plexiglass are ideal for phone cameras for close up photos and videos as a personal and exhilarating experience of the lions in a completely unique way. 

These holes are totally safe and too small for a lion paw to get through. 

The magical experience not only provides guests with a once-in-a-lifetime lion encounter, but it also gives the lions “enrichment,” and helps raise funds for the non-profit sanctuary to continue caring for the 70+ big cats who are in their care.

Learn more about GG Conservation at this link.