HELP ME - CENTRAL

HELPING THOSE WHO CAN'T HELP THEMSELVES

Blog: Finding My Voice

An Inconvenient Truth

Posted on July 24, 2012 at 8:25 AM Comments comments (0)

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Several years ago I was a guest at a Christmas party at a neighbor’s home. During the evening the host’s mother, who obviously had never heard that you shouldn’t discuss religion and politics at social functions, began bashing Al Gore and his belief in global warming. No one disagreed with her or questioned her reasoning. I kept silent, but I wanted to ask her one question, ...“Haven’t you seen changes in your own backyard?”


Every year for as long as I can remember, the azaleas in my yard were in full bloom for Derby week, which is a big occasion in Louisville. The year of the Christmas party I had noticed that my azaleas bloomed two weeks before Derby, the robins in my yard had appeared earlier than usual, winter was drier with less snow, and spring was warmer than it had been in the past. Over the years the changes have accelerated. This year my azaleas bloomed five weeks before Derby. We had much more rain than usual (four inches in one hour during one spring storm), and the weather turned hot earlier, with record breaking temperatures - ten days over 100 degrees in late June and early July.


“You don’t need a weatherman

To know which way the wind blows.”

Bob Dylan (Subterranean Homesick Blues)


Many people still scoff at the idea of global warming and/or its causes. Some people believe that the recent phenomenons we have been experiencing...like melting glaciers, intense hurricanes, tornadoes, and rain storms, heavier snowfall, droughts, and raging wildfires...are part of the normal cyclical changes we should expect in nature. I don’t know what is causing the changes, but I do believe that charges are occurring. I have seen them with my own eyes. My gut feeling, that little voice inside me that on many occasions has led me to conclusions that have proven to be right, tell me that man is the cause or  a major factor.


Yesterday our newspaper was not on the front steps when my husband went out to to retrieve it. He took a short walk up and down the street to see if our neighbors had the same problem. Two houses down he saw a buck and a doe standing in our neighbor’s driveway. We don’t live in the country. We live in an area that is a short drive from the center of downtown Louisville. Those poor deer and other animals like them, who are forced to live in pockets of green that have not been paved over or turned into lawns, were foraging for food and water. They are the victims of human actions and decisions. Everything man touches, the changes and “improvements” we make in the name of progress or to benefit ourselves, has unintended consequences. For whatever reason, we believe we can do whatever we want to do. After all, aren’t we superior to every other creature on Earth?


The Earth does not belong to man; Man belongs to the Earth. This we know. All things are connected like the blood which unites one family. Whatever befalls the Earth befalls the sons of the Earth. Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself. ~Chief Seattle


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Changing Minds & Lives One Step at a Time

Posted on November 8, 2011 at 6:25 PM Comments comments (0)

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Spaying is a compromise in terms of reverence for life, but perhaps a necessary one in a society which kills millions of dogs and cats a year in "animal shelters".  ~James Marcus


Five years ago my daughter left home to attend a state university.  During her first week at school she visited a tobacco farm in a rural area several miles from the university. The farm was owned by the grandparents of another student who lived in the same dorm as my daughter. While the girls were touring the farm, a scrawny kitten started following them. When my daughter asked about the kitten and others she had seen around the farm, the grandmother stated that she had two unwanted litters of kittens...and both litters and two mama cats would soon be “leaving” the farm. The grandmother explained that they had more cats than they needed, so she was planning on taking the cats and kittens to a local high kill shelter, placing them in a bag and dropping them off a nearby bridge, or taking them for a “ride” and abandoning them on the side of the road. She had used all three methods to dispose of previous unwanted litters.


     Of course, my daughter was horrified. As soon as she arrived back at her dorm, she called me. I told her I would try to find places for the unwanted cats and kittens. Over a period of several days I called and emailed every rescue I thought might be able to help. I received some suggestions, but no offers of help. The following week, my daughter drove back to the farm. The grandmother placed nine kittens in a cardboard box and handed it to my daughter. She then tried to force the two mama cats in the back seat of my daughter’s car. One of the cats jumped out and ran off.


Two hours later my daughter brought the one mama cat and nine kittens to me. All were dirty and flea infested. The mama cat was skinny and had a dislocated hip. I spent the next several hours washing all of the new arrivals twice with Dawn dishwashing liquid to remove the dirt and kill the fleas. I then handed each one to my youngest son who carefully dried them and used a fine tooth comb to remove the dead and dying fleas. The following day I took the mama cat and kittens to a veterinarian who weighed and examined all of them. Surprisingly, all were in good health. I was advised to feed them high quality cat/kitten food and that the mama cat's dislocation would resolve on its own. A few days thereafter a cat rescuer responded to my plea for help. My family fostered the mama and kittens and the rescue provided vet care. The kittens and cat were fully vetted and posted on the rescue’s Petfinder site. Several of the kittens were adopted. The remaining kittens and the mama cat are still with me.


     The story didn't end there. The week after the mama cat and kittens arrived at my house, the rescuer called the grandmother and offered to spay the remaining mama cat and any other cats on the farm for free. The grandmother refused the offer. She saw no need to have the remaining mama cat spayed even though she had planned to dispose of the cat and she had spayed her personal “house cat”. The remaining mama cat and any future offspring were of no value to the farm. They were considered to be disposable and easily replaceable...and that is one of the reasons why shelters and rescues are overflowing with unwanted cats and dogs. Too many people are set in their ways and are not open to change or new ideas, even if the cost or inconvenience to them is minimal and the benefits are long lasting and save lives.


A Cat's Prayer ~ I ask for the privilege of not being born...not to be born until you can assure me of a home and a master to protect me, and the right to live as long as I am physically able to enjoy life... not to be born until my body is precious and men have ceased to exploit it because it is cheap and plentiful.  ~Author Unknown


     So how do we solve a problem created by ignorance, indifference, and irresponsibility? How do we convert hearts and minds that are resistant to change? I wish there was one simple solution; one quick, easy fix that would prevent abuse, neglect, abandonment, and the constant killing, but more than one strategy is needed. We need new approaches, innovative ideas, and low-cost programs that reach and destroy the roots of the problem. I recently received an email with the message posted below. Please read, share, and donate if you can. Ideas like this will bring us one step closer to becoming a truly humane society where all life is valued.


Subject: Spay-A-Thon


Hey everyone,


     Please take time to go to our website and view our new video.  http://flemingregional.com/  or view it on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iGvs5TKP1mM&feature=youtu.be


     We are beginning the journey of our lives and could really use your help spreading the word. We are on a mission to drastically reduce, and possibly even eliminate (yes, it's a lofty goal), the number of unwanted animals in this area of rural eastern KY.


     We have started by convincing owners of pets with litters to spay the mother and in return, we will alter the entire litter at no cost at the age of 7 weeks. It is working!


     We are working hard to stop the suffering, the feeling of being all alone, the gnawing hunger, the weariness of wandering, and the shear fear of what will happen next. We want to put it all to a stop, and we will with the help of others. We need funding immediately. If everyone who watches this video could give $1 to $10, and then passed it on to only 10 of their friends, imagine what that would do for these animals! Think of how many births we can prevent. Just think of how many lives will be saved!


     The animals you see in our video are the animals that we worked endless hours to save. We have been a shelter, a rescue, a transporter and now, a spay neuter clinic. These very animals, along with so many more, have brought us joy, despair, hope and heartbreak . And with it all, just when we feel we cannot continue, we look into their eyes, and once more, they inspire us to push on.


     We hope everyone who sees this video featuring these precious beings will find it in their hearts to give what they can. If you cannot give anything towards this goal, please pass this on to others, post it on your facebook pages, and help spread the word far and wide. Please help us prevent other animals from the fate they face if we do not stand up for them and make it stop!


     Please send this to every contact you have and ask them to do the same. We will need the continual support and funding to get a grip on this situation.


     Thank you to all who support us in this journey of saving thousands from suffering by one spay at a time.


     To see our inspirational video and/or to donate, go to flemingregional.com


     Thank You!


     Tim, Stephanie and Taylor Stamper


PLEASE CROSSPOST WIDELY!!!!!!

 

CONTACT: Tim Stamper [email protected] with any questions


 For each CAT we spay and neuter, we prevent the birth of 74 unwanted kittens in ONE YEAR.  For each DOG we spay and neuter, we prevent the birth of 100 unwanted puppies in ONE YEAR. ~The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA)


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A Failure to Communicate

Posted on October 26, 2011 at 11:55 PM Comments comments (0)

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Unseen they Suffer, Unheard they Cry, in Agony they Linger, in Loneliness they Die! ~Author Unknown


Dogs and cats died in shelters yesterday. Pleas were sent out asking people to help, to share, to cross-post, but the messages weren’t sent far enough, fast enough, or wide enough to reach the people who might have been able to help. At the moment I can’t bear to think of how many poor creatures were killed. I failed them; you failed them; we failed them. They were at shelters that don’t adopt out to the public, at shelters that are constantly overcrowded due to high intake, and at shelters that kill just because that is what they do every day or every week.


     At the moment I feel only sadness, but soon that will turn to anger. Why were these animals in shelters? Some were turned-in by their “owners” who knew or should have known that surrendering their dog or cat would probably result in a death sentence. Some of those who died were strays. Why didn’t the humans who previously fed, sheltered, and presumably cared for them make an effort to find their lost animals and bring them home? Shame on those poor excuses for humans who left their dogs and cats to die. Their actions were irresponsible, thoughtless, and, as far as I am concerned, criminal. By leaving their dog or cat at a kill shelter, they were an accessory to murder. Their photos should be plastered on telephone poles and pinned on bulletin boards in post offices where they post the “wanted” posters. Their names should be published in newspapers and posted on the internet. They should be held accountable for their actions.


What part of “Thou Shalt Not Kill” don’t you understand? Stop abandoning your pets at kill shelters - Keep your pet for life! ~Author Unknown


Innocent lives were lost yesterday and more will be lost today. These dogs, cats, kittens, and puppies are in unfamiliar places and suffer stress, fear, and loneliness before they are “humanely euthanized” - a nice euphemism for killed. Their “owners” are unaware of the moment when these poor helpless creatures take their last breathes...and probably they don’t care. Unfortunately, my rant will not be seen by the people who need to hear the truth. Their irresponsibility has caused misery and death...and they will feel no remorse while you and I lose sleep over those we couldn't help.


     Animal shelters are enablers. They allow the irresponsible people in our society to dispose of animals without having to get their hands dirty. Some shelters make it convenient for irresponsible people to dispose of their unwanted dogs and cats by providing night “drop off” boxes. Those who are too lazy to drive to the shelter can allow their dog or cat to run loose or wander off. Someone will eventually call animal control if the dog or cat isn't killed by a car, predator, or miscreant who takes pleasure in harming animals.


When I tell people that I have a website to help animals, they usually ask me questions and I am ALWAYS astounded at how naive, uninformed, or oblivious the average person is about animal overpopulation, shelter overcrowding, and euthanasia. Many people don’t know the difference between a kill shelter, no kill shelter, and low kill shelter. They are unaware of the number of animals that are killed each year in shelters or the methods used to dispose of society’s unwanted. Many people don’t realize that the majority of kill shelters have a minimum hold time for stray animals or that owner surrenders can be killed immediately.


"What we've got here is a failure to communicate." ~The Captain/prison warden and Luke (the prisoner) in the movie “Cool Hand Luke.”


 

     One of the reasons we are constantly and continually confronted with the problem of shelter overcrowding is our failure to communicate. First, the victims - the animals who are being abandoned and left to die - can’t speak. They must rely on humans to communicate for them. Second, even with the internet, sites like Petfinder and Death Row Dogs, and 1000’s of people posting, cross-posting, sharing, and emailing, we are often unable to communicate the message to the people who are able to help - rescuers, adopters, and sponsors - within the small window of time often alloted to death row animals. Third, we aren’t reaching the people who need to hear the real message. If you are reading this, I am preaching to the choir. You are probably already aware of the problem and are doing something about it.  The people who fail or refuse to spay/neuter, who cannot or will not make a lifelong commitment, and who view animals as commodities to be sold, given away, or disposed of like inanimate objects are the ones who need to be educated and “converted.”  


     If more people were made aware of the facts, maybe more lives could be saved.  We need to speak for those who can’t speak, advocate for them, and educate others about their plight.  So, before you go to bed tonight, do something to help an unwanted animal: send an email, cross-post, share on Facebook, sponsor a shelter animal, volunteer to drive a leg of a transport, make a donation to a rescue, offer to foster, convince a friend, neighbor or family member to spay/neuter their dog or cat or to rehome an unwanted animal instead of dumping them at a shelter or on the street...do one small thing that will make tomorrow a better day.


Now take my hand and hold it tight.

I will not fail you here tonight,

For failing you, I fail myself

And place my soul upon a shelf

In Hell's library without light.

I will not fail you here tonight.

~ Dean Koontz


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The Bully Syndrome

Posted on October 18, 2011 at 2:10 PM Comments comments (0)

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First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out - Because I was not a Socialist. Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out - Because I was not a Trade Unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out - Because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me - and there was no one left to speak for me.  ~Martin Niemöller


     The word bully has many connotations, most of them negative. A bully is a person who purposely tries to hurt others. Bullying is when someone keeps doing or saying things to have power over another person. Bullies like to instill fear and trepidation in their targets. This gives them power and feeds their self-esteem. Cyber bullying is the misuse of email systems or Internet forums for sending aggressive flame mails.  And then there is the Bully breed dog which is any dog having bulldog lineage. Unfortunately, many people believe these dogs to be mean, aggressive and dangerous.


     We are becoming a nation of bullies. We are quick to attack and rush to judgment with little or no proof of wrongdoing. Once Pandora’s box has been opened, it is difficult to sort through all the fabrications and determine who is the perpetrator and who is the victim.


This dog is Dominic. DOMINIC WAS BEGGING FOR A CHANCE. He was a black dog and one of those “bully breeds”...and that meant a lot of people would not want him. He was a young boy, barely two years old. Dominic was euthanized.


     Dogs like Dominic are killed in shelters every day. They are demonized because of their breed, which is unrelated to their temperament, and they are the target of breed specific legislation. Previously, German Shepherd Dogs, Rottweilers, Doberman Pinschers, Chow Chows, Huskies, Great Danes, Boxers, St. Bernards, and many other breeds were declared to be dangerous and ownership was banned in cities throughout the country. The result of this stigmatization is that sweet, adoptable animals are being relinquished to shelters and killed. In cities where bully breeds are banned, these dogs cannot be adopted out and their only way out of a shelter other than a body bag or trash can is rescue.


     Animal behavior is learned...just as children are born innocent and are taught to hate. If people want to prevent dog attacks and aggressive behavior, they need to focus on the cause of the problem: humans. Banning specific breeds is punishing good dogs and good owners for the wrongful actions of others. The type of people who breed and own aggressive dogs are usually dog fighters and criminals...and they are not deterred by breed specific legislation.


     The media has to shoulder much of the blame for stigmatizing these dogs. There have been cases where a Pittie has been reported as involved in an incident when it was another breed. According to testing of 122 dog breeds by the American Temperament Testing Society, the American Pit Bull Terrier achieved a passing rate 85.3 percent of the time. Golden Retrievers 83.2 percent, Collies 79.4, Beagles at 78.2 percent, and Standard Schnauzers, a surprisingly low 63.5 percent. Check out this link to see how your breed did: http://www.atts.org/statistics.html


     A form of bullying can be seen in some animal shelters. Many small towns are controlled by people who act like mini-dictators because of their position or social status. Management of animal shelters is given to friends and/or relatives or their off-spring who have no background in animal care and who, in many cases, do not like animals. These shelters are poorly managed, the animals get minimal care, and there is little or no effort made to find homes or rescues. These shelters are warehouses for animals awaiting slaughter. Many people don’t realize that an animal relinquished to a shelter can be killed IMMEDIATELY or that their stray cat or dog will not be taken in by a Good Samaritan or find a forever home with a loving family. It is more likely that these animals will be held for the minimum time required by law and euthanized.


     Shelters are traumatic places for animals. They are noisy and crowded. Animals that in other circumstances would be adoptable become stressed, depressed or aggressive...which moves them to the unadoptable category. There are people who try to save shelter animals. In many cases, these people are from outside the community. Their efforts are often thwarted by politicians, dog wardens, and shelter managers who view outsiders as a threat to their authority. They use the helpless animals as leverage to intimidate those trying to help. They ban rescues at whim and refuse to make changes that would improve shelter conditions and reduce the number of animal intakes. These bullies seem to take pleasure in killing animals instead of finding solutions to the problems of animal overpopulation and shelter overcrowding.


     There are also bullies in the animal rescue community. Instead of working with others toward a common goal, there are some people who believe they are the sole authority on the subject. These self-appointed despots of rescue are constantly patting themselves on the back when something good has been accomplished and are quick to go on witch hunts when they perceive they are being threatened...without considering the consequences of their actions. Their usual course of action is to take a grain of truth and create a mountain of lies to demonize a group or individual, much like the accusers in Salem, MA so many years ago.


     It is too late for Dominic. The bullies of the world made him and others like him unadoptable. However, there are dogs and cats on the Help Me-CENTRAL website, posted on the website’s Facebook pages, and in shelters who are in danger of becoming another sad statistic. They need your help. Please don’t let the bullies of the world win. Become a voice for the voiceless.


All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing.

~Edmund Burke


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Revelations in Black

Posted on October 14, 2011 at 10:45 AM Comments comments (0)

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I wear the black for the poor and the beaten down, / Livin' in the hopeless, hungry side of town, / I wear it for the prisoner who has long paid for his crime, / But is there because he's a victim of the times. ~Johnny Cash


LAST REPRIEVE FOR INKY! Inky is a black Lab mix who has been in the shelter for a month. He is a great dog, although his photos do not do him justice. He has a $100 sponsorship, as well. Please help him if you can. Inky will have to go on the Euth list, as he has been at the shelter so long. He is good with other dogs, handles well, no tricks, but very calm natured. He has handled the shelter environment and has actually gotten even sweeter, rather than deteriorating. About 4 years old. (Adoption Pending!)


     When I was in my early teens, I was an avid reader of mysteries, science fiction, and horror stories. While my friends were reading romance novels, I was being entertained by Agatha Christie, H.P. Lovecraft, and writers of scary stories published by Scholastic Books. I especially enjoyed collections of short stories of this genre. One short story that I clearly remember was titled “Revelations in Black." It was a gothic horror story. The main character, a young man, entered into a conversation with a mysterious woman he meets while sitting on a park bench at dusk. Whether by luck or plan they continued to meet at the same time and location every evening thereafter. The man was intrigued by this woman, who is always dressed in the same black gown with a veil covering her face. As time passed, the man began to notice that the woman was not quite what she appeared to be and, ultimately, realized that the woman in black was a vampire. Thus, the revelation. The story was dark and did not have a happy ending.

 

     Just like the young man in the story, I am drawn to the color black. Black dogs mixed in with a few black and white cats here and there have always been members of my family. When I growing up we had a black Chow mix named Inky, a black Beagle/Terrier mix I named Lady, and Chivas Regal, a Scottish Terrier. After I married, my parents adopted several black Labs. My sister’s family also had a preference for black Labs and many years ago they had a black cat named Midnight. The first cat my husband and I adopted was a black and white female we named Charlie Chaplin. We currently have four black Scottish Terriers and a male Tuxedo cat named Papillon. All have been great companions.  

 

    At some point I realized that not everyone is a fan of black dogs and cats.  Of course, black cats are burdened by the superstition that having a black cat cross your path is bad luck...and how better to avoid bad luck than to not have a black cat in your home. Black cats and dogs who are unfortunate enough to end up at a shelter are at a great disadvantage. When I see a plea for a black dog, my first thought is, “Oh no... not another one,” and I know that this dog will have a difficult time finding a home or rescue.

 

If we have black dogs or cats they are the last to be adopted. It is a fact, people will take white or brighter colored dogs or cats before black ones. The only time black is popular is around Halloween.  ~Author Unknown

 

     For many dogs awaiting adoption, the speed with which they find a home may rest not on their breed, gender or age, but on one trait that has no bearing on their personality or temperament. Shelter officials have dubbed it “Black Dog Syndrome” -  the propensity of dark-coated animals to be passed over for adoption in favor of their lighter counterparts. Skeptics claim the syndrome is an urban legend, but those who work at shelters and in rescue know the phenomenon is very, very real. To complicate matters even further, black dogs aren’t as photogenic as other dogs and many have white facial hair that gives them the look of an older dog. Many of the black dogs in shelters are large dogs. All of these factors make black dogs less likely to be adopted. A dog whose attributes fade into the background of  an online photo does not make a good impression to potential adopters or rescuers; a senior dog in a shelter has little hope of salvation; and shelters are overflowing with unwanted large dogs.


PLEASE HELP! Isley Bombay Small Adult Male URGENT! Ever seen an owl's eyes? Well, this splendid feline is boasting a pair! She has the biggest, most gorgeous eyes we've ever seen on a cat! THIS CAT HAS BEEN HERE FOREVER! SAVE ISLEY TODAY! - CONTACT: [email protected] or call (270) 685-8275


     A large majority of the cats in shelters across the country that never find homes are black. Like black dogs, they are judged by the color of their fur - and not by their character or personality. These beautiful black creatures spend the end of their lives watching all the other animals being adopted into new homes. Ultimately, they are finally chosen for the one thing they do not want: euthanasia. Black cats are the last cats adopted from shelters and rescues because of old myths and superstitions linking them to witches, devils, and bad luck. That is their bad luck! More black cats are euthanized than non-black cats.

 

     In 2002, The Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science published a study that examined the factors that determine the adoption of an animal, including the color of the animal's coat. The study found that potential adopters considered a black cat less desirable and, therefore, increased the cat's risk of euthanasia. The study also revealed that black cats were half as likely to be adopted as tabby cats and two-thirds less likely than white cats. In total, only 20% of the black cats in the study who were offered for adoption were given a chance at a loving home. Sadly, the remaining cats were euthanized.


BEV This is Bev. She is on the e list at a local shelter. She has until Monday to find a home home. Bev was found with a flea collar and an invisible fence collar on her. She is so depressed at the shelter that she has stopped eating! Please help this baby. She is 5 to 6 years young and loves everyone!  ONLY HAS UNTIL MON!!!! She has given up. Let's show her that we haven't given up on her! (Adopted!)


     Black cats and dogs like Bev, Isley, and Inky should not become another statistic or part of a gothic horror story with an uphappy ending just because they were born the “wrong” color. Just like we hope that people will judge us by the content of our character and not by the color of our skin, eyes or hair, so too should we not judge animals by the color of their fur. All of the animals in shelters are equally deserving of finding a good home and having a long life. We need to find ways to change their bad luck.

 


Color contributes to beauty, but it is not beauty. Color should have a minor part in the consideration of beauty, because it is not color but the structure that constitutes its essence. ~Johann Joachim Winckelmann


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Haunted By Ghosts

Posted on October 10, 2011 at 6:45 PM Comments comments (0)

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One need not be a chamber to be haunted; One need not be a house;

The brain has corridors surpassing Material place.

~Emily Dickinson


      I am haunted by ghosts. Not the kind that go bump in the night or send shivers up your spine, but memories of the unwanted and unloved in our society. They come late at night on silent paws and disturb my sleep. They are the ghosts of dogs and cats that never lived in my house or felt the touch of my hand, but their sad, hopeful, confused faces in photos posted online or sent to me in emails are permanently etched in my mind.

 

These two dogs, #149 and #347,  were in a rural high intake/high kill shelter. They had no names and were given numbers to identify them. They were not adopted, rescued, offered a foster home, sponsored, or given a reprieve within the small period of time allotted to them, so they were killed.


    Yesterday was like every other day at an animal shelter. Unwanted dogs and cats were euthanized due to lack of space or, in some cases, “because their time was up.” The HSUS estimates that animal shelters care for 6-8 million dogs and cats every year in the United States, of whom approximately 3-4 million are euthanized. At this time, there is no central data reporting agency for animal shelters, so these numbers are estimates.


     While some shelter employees were going about their work of selecting and dispatching the cast-offs of our society, others were sending out pleas and begging for help for the dogs and cats whose only crimes were to be unwanted and homeless. Last December #149 and #347 were two of those unwanted animals. More dogs and cats were coming into the shelter, so room had to be made. Several dogs and puppies were placed on “The Euth List” and messages were sent out that they had to be removed from the shelter IMMEDIATELY or they would be killed. Some of these dogs were eligible for euthanization the day they were available for adoption/rescue. No cats or kittens were mentioned, but presumably they too were in danger.


No other disease or condition of companion animals takes as many lives as euthanasia. In fact, no other disease comes close. ~Janet M. Scarlett


     Today, shelters euthanize around 4 million animals, while there are more than 135 million dogs and cats in homes.  An animal in a shelter is killed every 1.5 seconds. Only one animal in 10 born in the U.S. gets a good home that lasts a lifetime. In Kentucky alone, 285,000 animals are relinquished to shelters or are abandoned each year. Kentucky is ranked #1 as the state to be an animal abuser and #50 in animal protection laws.  Eighty-five percent of homeless animals in the state are euthanized. Kentucky has more than three times the average number of animals in shelters and the kill rate is 15% above the national average. Cats and kittens are the step-children of the rescue world and do not get the exposure given to dogs and puppies. Some shelters kill 90% or more of their cats and kittens.


     People have sent me angry emails and messages accusing me of making them feel guilty because they have relinquished a pet to a shelter or because they "can't afford" to have their dog or cat spayed/neutered, resulting in unwanted puppies and kittens. People have also criticized me because I post updates about animals that have been euthanized. Recently someone posted on the website's Facebook page and stated that they were "unfriending" me because I had posted an update for a dog that had been killed in a shelter. Someone came to my defense and posted the following:


     "Those of us who spend countless hours each day and each week sharing, posting and cross-posting to expose the urgency of the dire plight of these pets' situations - through NO fault of their own - NEED to have closure on the animals we spend so much time networking. We share and cross-post numerous times for each animal and we feel a connection with these precious creatures. We don't just click "Share" and don't give them another thought; we think of them each and every day and as we try to fall asleep at night their images are the ones we see before finally drifting off to sleep, only to have their pleading, soulful eyes haunt us in our dreams.


     NO, we don't and CAN'T forget them, and they stay in our minds and in our hearts until we know they are safe. And for the ones who aren't lucky enough to make it out alive and find their rescue angel or furever home...they never leave us and it is for them that we continue to do what we do, as heartbreaking as it all too often is. So, YES, we need to have these updates; as upsetting and disturbing as they may be.


     But, what is even MORE UPSETTING AND DISTURBING is that these precious innocent souls end up in these Hell holes in the first place! The more eyeballs that see what is really going on - the good and the evil, the happily-ever-after and those that never get their happy endings - the MORE precious innocent lives can be SAVED! We CANNOT filter out ONLY the happy endings and pretend they will all be saved."


(Thank you Kacie C. for expressing so eloquently what many of us feel.)


     The memories of dogs like #149 and #347 haunt me. They did not deserve to die abandoned and alone, cowering in corners of runs and cages, pleading for love and life with sad, frightened eyes. Euthanizing and warehousing animals in shelters is not a solution to over-population and overcrowding. The way these animals were treated was cruel, inhumane, and unconscionable. Until we take responsibility for our actions and find reasonable, rational solutions, the killing will continue...and my dreams will be disturbed.


       R.I.P. #149 and #347. We will not and cannot forget you.


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House of Horrors

Posted on October 8, 2011 at 9:35 AM Comments comments (0)

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Imagine not ever being able to walk freely, touch the ground, enjoy a kind word and caring caress. Now imagine this lasts your entire life. The only contact you have is to be removed from your cage, ravished, then nothing more. When you’re no longer able to conceive, you’re thrown in the trash, literally. This is the life of a puppy mill dog.  ~Donna S


 What kind a person (other than a legitimate breeder - a subject for another day) breeds animals for profit? Puppy mill operators and backyard breeders view animals as products. They don’t care about the conditions of their "factory," if the product is good or shoddy, or what happens to their product once it leaves the premises. The bottom line is about making money. Human decency and common sense don’t enter into the equation.


     This week a plea was sent out - ”EMERGENCY - 118  dogs seized from puppy mill.” This is a terrible situation for many different reasons. The first responders had the unenviable task of  going into a situation that is incomprehensible to the average person. They had to evaulate the animals, help those who required immediate assistance, and transport all of them to safe places. Many of these dogs and puppies were probably in poor condition - overbred and interbred, no vet care, and no socialization. The terrible living conditions have probably caused a myriad of problems. Initially, these dogs required vet care, grooming, and temporary housing.


"I am a small breeder in eastern Kentucky. My grandchildren are a big help in getting the puppies ready for their new homes. They love playing with the new puppies, but like me they hate to see the puppies (to) leave."

~Pat B. posted on PuppyFind.com


     According to news accounts, the conditions at this puppy mill/breeding facility were deplorable. Adult dogs, puppies, newborns, and pregnant females were living in a single wide trailer. Some of the rescued dogs “had mold growing on them, rotted teeth and dead rats in their cages....some were found with broken bones...others malnourished...and some living with their own feces inside the crates.”  Three small dachshunds were unable to stand.  At least one dog died.


     The rescue of dogs from a puppy mill often has a negative impact on others. Many times rescued puppy mill dogs are taken to a local shelter. Since many shelters are always at capacity, the current residents are in danger of dying to make room for incoming animals. More pleas are sent out begging people to help. Lives are at stake. The rescuers are overwhelmed. They need volunteers to help take care of the rescued animals and donations for medical care, food, and medicine. The outcome at this stage depends upon the humanity of those involved in the initial rescue. Several years ago, when a puppy mill was closed, all of the animals were taken to a rural high kill shelter that accepted animals from several different counties. The shelter manager would only allow one dog per run. The intake of  many new animals to an already crowded shelter created a crisis situation. The shelter manager's solution was to kill the animals already in the shelter to make room for the new dogs. Since the puppy mill dogs were held until the court could make a determination, all subsequent intakes were killed.


     The dogs from the current situation have been taken to a rural shelter. Thanks to a rescue group that strives to make this shelter low kill, the current residents of the shelter have been moved to another county and are being temporarily boarded at a shelter that recently closed. The rescue is actively seeking foster homes and rescues, as well as volunteers and donations.


I have three rescued breeder dogs from Missouri puppy mills. Puppy mill dogs are the sweetest, most appreciative dogs on the planet. It’s like they know they’ve just been given a second chance at life! ~Karin T


Two of my dogs were rescued from a puppy mill in Missouri. They and their parents were kept in a trailer that had no air conditioner during a hot summer when temperatures exceeded 100 degrees. Ballantine and Pinch were lucky. They were relatively healthy and adopted within a month of rescue. My son and I drove 16 hours round trip to adopt them. Although they are siblings, Ballantine and Pinch are as different as night and day. They differ in looks, personality, temperament, fur texture, and body length. Truth be told, Bally is not a good example of the breed, which indicates the indifferent manner in which they were bred. Both dogs are small in size for Scottish Terriers, weighing less than 20 lbs each.  When the rescuer placed them in my hands, I thought they were the most beautiful puppies I had ever seen. I hate to think about what they and the other dogs in the trailer must have endured before they were rescued.


These are strong and resilient creatures. They don't need our pity, or our unproductive anger. They need for us to stand up, to speak up, and to act, because they can't. People are responsible for the horrors that are puppy mills; people must be responsible for the solution as well. ~Katherine R


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More Information & Links:


Advertisement for puppies for sale (Ad has been removed):

http://www.puppyfind.com/view_listing/?list_id=uffc81707r&back=%2Fl%2F%3Facct_id%3D335023%26country%3D%26state%3D%26page%3D1%26order_by%3D%26back%3D&alert=sent&sid=1a7e4346676096e979e7415da7f2f338


118 Dogs Rescued From "Deplorable Conditions"

http://www.lex18.com/news/118-dogs-rescued-from-deplorable-conditions-/#.To56uhauEQs.facebook


This was not a new situation at this “small breeding facility.” A search online found that people were commenting about this puppy mill as far back as 2009. Puppy mill in Morehead > Comments from Dec 2009 & Jan 2010!!  http://www.topix.com/forum/city/morehead-ky/TV55USS8V2GQ2CLN4


HELP THE RESCUED DOGS & THE DOGS NEEDING RESCUE FROM THE SHELTER: To Donate, Foster, Rescue, Adopt, or Volunteer:

Saving The Animals of Rowan (STAR)

www.petfinder.com/shelters/KY251.html

Contacts: [email protected] & cc [email protected]


More information about puppy mills: The Horrors of Puppy Mills

http://fortheloveofthedogblog.com/the-horrors-of-puppy-mills


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Real Monsters

Posted on October 4, 2011 at 8:50 AM Comments comments (0)

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~GILLIGAN ~ R.I.P. This pitiful old boy was horribly abused, punctured, beaten, thrown over the fence at the pound, and died at the vet’s office.  His little body could not take anymore.


     October is one of my favorite months of the year. I love everything about the month: cooler weather and the almost too perfect days of Indian Summer, fresh cider, pumpkins, chrysanthemums, apples picked right from the tree, leaves changing to eye-catching hues or orange, yellow, brown and gold...and the crunching sound the fallen leaves make under my feet as I walk my dogs. The best part is that all of these sensory pleasures culminate in Halloween. Every day my anticipation grows as I decorate the house inside and outside, plan our annual Halloween party, bake cookies, and buy treats and candy to hand out to the trick or treaters who enjoy every eerie aspect of my yard as much as I do.



~ BULLET ~ GUNSHOTS! Dumped in a rural area and then found whimpering under a house. Shot by 3 different guns. A rifle, and 2 pistols. Unsure if one person used 3 guns or if 3 people had a shooting spree. Also had old fracture of  femur which had healed. This dog is incredibly sweet and was not a threat to anyone.


     My fondest childhood memories are of creating costumes from anything I could find around the house, going to Halloween parties, and trick or treating with friends. Vampires, werewolves, and Frankenstein’s monster were my companions. My mother and I shared a love for cheesy scary movies and I can clearly remember walking home from the neighborhood movie theater on a fall evening, in the days when local theaters existed and walking was a common practice, and discussing the attributes of Dracula in the movie we had just seen. He had been dashing and handsome... very much like Edward Cullen in the Twilight series. 


~ FRANCINE ~ PELVIS FRACTURE! The road department found this girl in the ditch while mowing. She appeared to have been there a couple days. Francine has a broken pelvis which needs to be plated.  She's only a year old and weighs 10lbs.


     I am not a fan of slasher movies. They show a lack of imagination. The blood and gore is gratuitous and only serves to desensitize people to cruelty. I don't understand why graphic violence is a source of entertainment. I can conjure up enough of my own horrors without having to view them on the wide screen or in my home. I had hoped humans would have evolved beyond the days when fighting to the death in arenas and watching public hangings were popular events.



Anyone who has accustomed himself to regard the life of any living creature as worthless is in danger of arriving also at the idea of worthless human lives. 

~Albert Schweitzer

 

~ CARL ~ GUNSHOT! FRACTURED JAW & LEG! Half starved as well. Broken front leg needed plate. Upper and lower jaw broken. Tail was still wagging.


     When I was a child, my grandmother said to me, “The only real monsters in the world are people.”  At that time I understood her words based on my experiences as a child. I believed she was explaining to me that the monsters in movies and in my nightmares weren’t real. However, as I grew older I realized that my Grandmother’s words had many levels of meaning. Monsters are everywhere...and they are people. We only have to watch a local newscast, read a newspaper, or search online to see the horrors created by humans. We bully and intimidate others. We are neglectful, irresponsible, and cruel. And then there are those who abuse, torment, and kill - the monsters who take pleasure in the helplessness of others, especially animals and children.


~CAROLYN ~GUNSHOT! Carolyn was found on the side of a road in a rural area with a injured leg. She had been shot. She is a very sweet dog that was probably dumped. Her age is about a year old, as she still has one puppy canine tooth. Carolyn weighs about 12lbs.

 

     I am always shocked by how people treat animals, but the reality is that the most vulnerable members of our society are easy prey. Last year I started keeping track of the "reported" cases of animal abuse in Kentucky. I emphasize the word “reported” because many cases of abuse are undetected. The victims do not have a voice. 

 

~ DOT ~ EYE INJURY!  6 Year Old Chihuahua with Eye Hanging Out! Vet sewed it back in, but doubt she will see out of it again. She also has a fractured pelvis. Not sure if the trauma was from the end of a boot or from being hit by car. Owners didn't have the gas money to get her to vet. Neighbors told them to shoot Dot. The dark shading around her eye is bruising and the stitches are to hold the third eyelid over the eye to see if it will reattach. Dot's rear leg is just dangling.


     Every day brings another horror story. All of the dogs pictured here are from one county and all of the abuse occurred recently, within a very short period of time. There are 120 counties in Kentucky. I can only assume, but try not to imagine, that more atrocities have occurred. Studies have long shown the correlation between animal abuse, criminal behavior, and violence towards humans.  We need to acknowledge that cruelty to animals is wrong and unacceptable. We need to speak for those who can't speak for themselves and demand that cruelty be harshly punished. We need to confront the real monsters in the world and stop them.

 

Dr. Carbone told me "We can choose not to look at or hear about animal abuse, but that does not mean it's not happening."   So simple yet so true.  I used to be a "can't look coward".  That only helped me - did nothing for the animals. Dr. Carbone is right - if animal lovers don't look animal abuse in the eye and help, who will? 

~E. Reed

 

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Take a Chance on Me!

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 7:30 PM Comments comments (0)

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Sometimes being overlooked in a shelter is not a bad thing. “Archie” was a young yellow and white tabby in a high kill rural shelter in Kentucky. The shelter policy was to kill every animal in the shelter every week.  A volunteer did her best to find homes and rescues for the death row inmates, but she was always fighting a race against time. “Archie” had been in the shelter a few months. The volunteer posted a plea to a Yahoo group, “This young cat has been overlooked for weeks, but this week his time is up.”  At the time I was fostering a mama cat and nine kittens. I had made an appointment with a veterinarian located in a county adjacent to where the shelter was located to have the female kittens spayed and I offered to take “Archie.” I thought one cat similar in age and color to our foster family would go unnoticed by my husband and “Archie” needed a place to go.  My offer to foster was accepted.


    When  I arrived at the vet’s office, “Archie” was already there, having been transported by the volunteer from the shelter. An examination of “Archie” prior to surgery revealed that he, was in fact, a she. I renamed her Angelica because it was close to Christmas. Angelica was spayed along with the other kittens and when I returned the following day, she came home with me, hidden amongst the others in a crate.


     Angelica made an easy transition into our home. Having one more kitten underfoot  didn’t make any noticeable difference. The other cats accepted Angelica as one of their own. My husband didn’t realize we had a stowaway until the day when he took the time to count all of them. As the weeks passed, some of the kittens found forever homes. Angelica’s angel never came looking for her. Angelica is now four years old. She is a small, slender girl. Like her namesake in the Rug Rats cartoon, she is talkative, inquisitive, and makes certain we are always aware of her presence. She enjoys sitting on my son’s lap when he sits at the computer and sleeps with him at night, snuggling under the covers. Angelica is safe and loved. She is home.


BUZZ  Pit Bull ~ EUTHANIZED ~ Buzz was a sweet 1 yr old boy who was brought in as an owner surrender. He was a nice boy and didn't mind the other dogs at the pound.  

 

     Unfortunately, most overlooked shelter animals like Angelica do not have a “happy ever after" story. The few that  are accidentally overlooked for euthanasia are ultimately discovered and killed. Many others die in shelters because they are ignored or intentionally overlooked by potential adopters and rescues. People deem them to be unadoptable or unacceptable because they are the wrong color (black), the wrong breed (mixes and Bully breeds), the wrong age (seniors and  teenagers in the awkward stage), or the wrong size (large breed dogs).  Some are not pretty enough to catch the eye (plain brown dogs and gray tabby cats) or they are too shy or frightened by the noise and chaos of the shelter. Some have minor flaws, disabilities, or special needs. All are deserving of love and homes. Since many dogs and cats have only a small window of opportunity in which to find a home or rescue, those who don’t make a good first impression, who are seen through the bars of a cage or run, or in a blurry, poorly taken photograph posted online, often lose their lives. Sometimes we have to look beyond the dirt, the fear, the uncertainty in those pleading eyes and take a chance. Like me, you may find a diamond in the rough.


It is only with the heart that one can see rightly;

what is essential is invisible to the eye.  

~Antoine de Saint-Exupry


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Learning to Share

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 11:15 PM Comments comments (0)

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One of the first lessons we learn as children is that we have to share. We must share our mother with our father. If we have siblings, we have to share the time and attention we receive from both parents, share our toys, and sometimes we share clothes and bedrooms. On the playground we share swings and slides, and in school we are expected to share our ideas, thoughts, and feelings. We share secrets and apartments with friends and hopefully soon to be friends, and we share seats on buses and airplanes with strangers. On Facebook we share information.


     Every morning I look at the website's visitor statistics as well as the number of people who look at the website's Facebook pages. I know how many people visit the website and what links they used to find it. I know the number of people who look at the Facebook posts and how many click on the share buttons. What I find frustrating and difficult to understand is that anywhere from 500 to 1000 people might look at one post, but rarely do more than a few of these “friends” share the post. When I cross-post a transport, hundreds of people look, but only a handful bother to click on the link to see the full run, and even fewer share the post. The chances of adoption, rescue, and sponsorship increase if more people share and network. Transports need many drivers located in all parts of the country and sharing the information increases the likelihood that the runs will be filled. Networking saves lives. So that raises the question, "Why don't people share?"


     Several months ago my daughter and I had a discussion about human motivation. My daughter said that this subject had been discussed in one of her classes and that the class concluded that every human action is motivated by a personal goal or benefit. My first instinct was to disagree, but as we discussed the subject I began to believe she was correct. We act to minimize physical pain or discomfort, to maximize pleasure, to meet a specific need, goal or ideal, to receive a reward or benefit, or for emotional reasons.  Unless we receive some sort of benefit, we don’t act - whether it be a reasoned decision or instinctive behavior - without some kind of reward. Clicking on a share button may be a little too easy to motivate the average human to act. There is no instant gratification, no feedback, no pat on the back...no incentive to motivate us.


Together we can change the world, one good deed at a time. ~Blake Beattie


     When pleas for help go unanswered, the animals that didn't receive commitments become another sad statistic.  Many transports are canceled because the runs don't fill, and often this results in animals having to remain in overcrowded shelters.  Shelters respond by killing for space. It takes only a few minutes to cross-post a plea and one second to click a button on Facebook to share a message.  Too many people fret and complain about the problems that exist, but sit on the sidelines. They don’t want to make an effort, get involved, or do anything that might inconvenience them. As someone recently pointed out in a post, "Few things in life are free and sharing costs nothing". The simple act of sharing can make a difference for one unwanted animal. Please share today!

 

Each small act of kindness reverberates across great distances and spans of time, affecting lives unknown to the one whose generous spirit was the source of the good echo, because kindness is passed on and grows each time it is passed, until simple courtesy becomes an act of selfless courage years later and far away.

~Dean Koontz

 

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The Death of Common Sense

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 9:45 AM Comments comments (0)

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As my family well knows, I am constantly ranting and raving about  something, whether it be the plight of animals or some other issue that is important to me. My morning routine includes reading the local newspaper. More often than not I can find something that makes me shake my head and think, “What is wrong with people?” These are just a few of  my “pet peeves.” - Killing, abandoning, and abusing children, animals, and the elderly; The senseless killing of neighbors, friends, family, and strangers; Destroying or taking another person’s property; Refusing to acknowledge there are others in need and looking the other way instead of helping; The lack of tolerance for others; The dumbing down of America; The promotion of ignorance, selfishness, and greed by the media; The hero worship of celebrities, reality show stars, and other self-promoters unworthy of adoration or emulation; The destruction of our planet; and Failing to protect the interests of future generations.


     Someone posted the eulogy below on Facebook. I wish I had written it. I was beginning to think I was the only person who thought we had lost some virtures that in the past were highly valued. With a little online research I discovered  the name of the author. The version below is slightly different than the original, but despite the changes the message is the same.  


                 The Death of Common Sense

By Lori Borgman


     Today we mourn the passing of a beloved old friend, Common Sense, who has been with us for many years. No one knows for sure how old he was, since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape. He will be remembered as having cultivated such valuable lessons as: - Knowing when to come in out of the rain; - Why the early bird gets the worm; - Life isn't always fair; - And maybe it was my fault.


     Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policies - don't spend more than you can earn - and believed adults, not children, are in charge. His health began to deteriorate rapidly when well-intentioned but overbearing regulations were set in place. Reports of a 6-year-old boy charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate; teens suspended from school for using mouthwash after lunch; and a teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student, only worsened his condition.


     Common Sense lost ground when parents attacked teachers for doing the job that they themselves had failed to do in disciplining their unruly children. It declined even further when schools were required to get parental consent to administer sun lotion or an aspirin to a student; but could not inform parents when a student became pregnant and wanted to have an abortion.


     Common Sense lost the will to live as the churches became businesses; and criminals received better treatment than their victims. Common Sense took a beating when you couldn't defend yourself from a burglar in your own home and the burglar could sue you for assault. Common Sense finally gave up the will to live, after a woman failed to realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot. She spilled a little in her lap, and was promptly awarded a huge settlement.


     Common Sense was preceded in death, by his parents, Truth and Trust, by his wife Discretion, his daughter Responsibility, and his son, Reason. He is survived by his 4 stepbrothers: I Know My Rights, I Want It Now, Someone Else Is To Blame, and I'm A Victim. Not many attended his funeral because so few realized he was gone. If you still remember him, pass this on. If not, do nothing.


(Note from Lori Borgman: This piece was first published March 15, 1998 in the Indianapolis Star.-  http://infohost.nmt.edu/~armiller/commonsen.htm - It has been "modified" and "edited" by others and circulated on the Internet, even sent to me several times. Imagine my surprise to see it attributed to some guy named Anonymous. If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, I take having my work circulated on the web as a compliment.)


     I truly believe that many problems, including those involving animals, could be solved or prevented if people used common sense and acted responsibly. We have become a nation of name callers, finger pointers, and shirkers who don't know the meaning of words like sharing, commitment,  and compassion. We have no self-respect and no respect for others. We fail to realize that just because we can do something doesn't mean we should do it.


     So for the problem creators out there, the humans who act as if the world revolves around them, who never learned what it means to be responsible, who don’t have common sense or proper role models, who have lost their way or their religion, and/or who lack guidance or a moral compass, I want you to know that it isn’t that difficult to make good decisions or to determine how to do the right thing. Before you take ANY action that could possibly affect ANYTHING THAT LIVES, there is a general principle that has a long history, and has been embraced and restated by many philosophers, religions, and people of good will: REMEMBER THE GOLDEN RULE! - “One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself.” Living by this simple tenet may not solve all of society's problems, but it could go a long way in making the world a better place for everyone.

 

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These Are the Days I Hate.

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 11:05 AM Comments comments (0)

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#37 Female Pit Bull Mix about 2-3 years old. Good With People Friendly and LOVES Attention. SHELTER FAVORITE. Cheated death twice. Sadly no one came for this girl and she was PUT TO SLEEP.


All that breathes is precious. Who is to say that the suffering of an animal is less worthy of solace than the pain of man? The spark of life is no dimmer simply because it is encased in fur or leather. ~ Anonymous

 


     I am having one of those “I’m as mad as hell and I’m not going to take it any more days”...except I don’t have any power or control over all the madness in the world.  All I can do is rant and cross-post...and hope. Many shelters are overflowing and some are euthanizing (killing) for space TODAY. Some are killing because that is what they do every week, even though the shelter isn’t full.  Pleas are being sent out, people are cross-posting - and everyone who cares is involved in a race against time - with the losers ending up dead.


 

     I look at the faces of all those unwanted animals and I can barely control my anger.  Why are these helpless, loving, trusting creatures in this position? Why do we as a society find it an acceptable practice to kill a  dog or cat just  because he or she is homeless?  When are the responsible people of the world going to say enough is enough and this behavior of catering to the irresponsible has got to stop?


For every animal that dies in a shelter, there is a HUMAN somewhere RESPONSIBLE for its death. ~Author Unknown


      I am tired of all the excuses (if they even bother to give one) from people who surrender their animals to a kill shelter, abandon them on the side of the road, or allow them to wander off without making an effort to find them.  What kind of person gets up in the morning and thinks, “I’m tired of feeding my cat, walking my dog, and/or taking five minutes to give this animal who relies upon me for life itself five minutes of my time”? No one moves or loses their home in one day. No one instantly becomes so busy they don’t have the time to care for their cat or dog or to safely rehome them.  Why would anyone rent an apartment or home knowing the landlord does not allow pets? Why adopt a cat or dog if you know your circumstances will change in the future or you are unable or unwilling to make a lifelong commitment?  Why allow the birth of a litter of kittens or puppies when you know you don't want them...or their mother?


The senseless killings of doomed pets who are a sad byproduct of an ignorant and lazy society are an outrage. One would think America is a modern country, with an intelligent society, yet every day thousands of innocent pets die - because the mainstream does not get "being responsible."  ~Monika Courtney


 

     There are alternatives to killing and there are ways and resources to stop this constant influx of animals into shelters. Spay your dogs and cats instead of allowing them to have unwanted offspring. Low cost spay/neutering is available. If you are moving or must rehome your dog or cat, contact a shelter or rescue and ask if they will post a courtesy listing on their website. Network - contact friends, family, and coworkers. If your pet is ill, there are grants, groups, and people who are willing to help...I can testify to that as a beneficiary of the generousity of others. Food banks can provide food for those who are unable to feed their cats and dogs. Programs exist to find homes for unwanted senior and/ or disabled animals. Resources are available for all kinds of situations...you just have to make an effort to find out what is available instead of taking the “easy” route of placing the responsibility on others. Killing an unwanted animal should NEVER be an option.

 

Stand still, close your eyes and listen; in the silence you can hear the cries of pain and low moans of anguish of animals waiting to die... do everything you can even if today it is just one small thing. There are no excuses for inaction, despair, egotism, or petulance that matter to the animals.  ~Ashley Montague


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It's Not Fair!

Posted on September 18, 2011 at 10:40 AM Comments comments (0)

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Anyone who is a parent or has been in a position where they have to deal with children is familar with the phrase - “It’s not fair!” The grass is always greener somewhere else and someone always has a bigger piece of the pie. Unfortunately, it is one of the harsh realites of life that we don’t always get what we want or deserve.


     My daughter is employed as a teacher at an "at risk" high school, her first “real” job since graduating from college in May. Even as a young adult, she is still having those “It’s not fair” days. Every week she calls home with some new problem, crisis or complaint...the long hours she works; the time and expense of the commute to her school which is located outside the county where she lives; the low compensation she receives...which is much less than the salary being paid to her roommates who are teachers employed at schools within the county; the fact that she has no free time and no life between teaching, preparing for classes, and going to graduate school at night; the high cost of rent for an apartment in a nice, safe area. My daughter isn’t seeking advice and she isn’t really complaining. She is just having a difficult time making the transition from college student to the real world and accepting the fact that life isn’t always fair.


     I am constantly reminded of the inequities that exist in the real world.  Every day, as I post dogs and cats on the website and cross-post them on Facebook, I realize that the outcome for most of these poor unwanted creatures is determined by something over which they and we have no control...the state, city, and shelter at which they are located.  Is the state forward thinking or in the dark ages?  Is the area rural or urban? Is the shelter high kill, low kill or no kill?  Does the shelter director really care about animals or is it just a job? Do they make an effort to save as many animals as possible? Are they willing to work with rescues and volunteers? Is the shelter open to the public and do they allow adoptions?  Do people in the community support the shelter?  Do they kill every animal every week as a matter of policy or do they wait until the shelter is full? How long is the mandatory hold time? Do they immediately kill owner surrenders or do they give them an opportunity to find a new home? Too many ifs.


I have always held firmly to the thought that each one of us can do a little to bring some portion of misery to an end.  ~Mahatma Ghandi

 

     The fact that a dog or cat is in a shelter where chances for adoption or rescue are limited and that the same dog or cat would have more time or opportunties in a different shelter, area, county or state is something which we can't change. However, there are things we can do to make a difference:


1. ADOPT and save a LIFE!   

2.  SPAY/NEUTER your dog and/or cat.

3.  VOLUNTEER at a SHELTER.

4.  DONATE money and/or supplies to a SHELTER or RESCUE.

5.  SPONSOR an animal at a shelter, rescue or sanctuary.

6.  FOSTER a dog or cat at a SHELTER or at a RESCUE.

7.  SUPPORT and promote animal protection LEGISLATION.

8.  EDUCATE your family and friends about humane treatment of animals.

9.  JOIN an animal related ORGANIZATION.

10.  Offer to DRIVE a leg of a TRANSPORT.

11. Act RESPONSIBLY!  Adopting a dog, cat, or any animal is a LIFELONG commitment.

12.  RECOMMEND  the HELP ME- CENTRAL website to a friend, post to a group, and/or cross-post!  http://www.helpmecentral.org/ ~ One seemingly simple act may save a life!


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Questions & Answers About the Website

Posted on September 16, 2011 at 4:30 PM Comments comments (0)

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Why have changes been made to the website?


     The website celebrated its 3rd birthday August 26, 2011 and at that time I deemed it necessary for it to undergo some changes.  I thought it needed a name change to reflect the fact that it encompasses more than just animals in Kentucky, and with that change it required a new look and new domain name.  I chose a notepage template because it was similar to the original template for the website, but not as cluttered. Both templates reflect my long time habit of making lists and writing notes to myself.  I asked for name suggestions for the revamped website and I liked many of the suggestions, but I settled on “HELP ME-CENTRAL” because it was the only one for which a domain name was available.    


Why a sunflower logo?     


     I am an avid gardener and I love flowers. The photo of the sunflower on the home page is a sunflower that I was able to successfully grow in my garden. Even though I plant sunflower seeds EVERY year, that particular sunflower is only one of two that made it past the sprout stage.  I chose a sunflower to represent the website because it exemplified what I was trying to achieve - a central site with information that could be used to solve problems. Sunflowers are cheerful flowers that are not only beautiful, but are also useful.


Why are many pages incomplete?


     I have many plans/ideas for the website, but not enough time, so I am contstantly constructing and reconstructing pages in parts. If a page is too outdated, I make it invisible. If the page contains enough usable information, I keep it online.


Why are many of the posts not updated?


    Again, not enough time and too much to do. Because the website contains a lot of information that is time sensitive, it constantly needs updating. I am only one person maintaining a large website and two Facebook pages. I also try to have a life away from the computer. I am constantly begging for help, and I have had a few offers, but when people discover how time consuming it is to maintain even one page, they seem to disappear. I try to include links in every post whenever possible, so visitors to the website can easily click on a link to find the most recent information available.


Why aren't all pleas posted on the website or on the Facebook pages?


     Many people send me emails and/or post pleas on the wall of the Facebook pages for me to cross-post.  At the moment I have 114 unread emails in my inbox - and that is for only one of my email addresses - and several posts on the walls of the Facebook pages that need to be re-posted.  I read every email and post...and I would love to post and cross-post everything I receive, but that just isn’t possible due to time constraints. As a result, I post /cross-post the oldest pleas first unless a plea indicates that time is of the essence. Sometimes pleas get overlooked and/or by the time I get around to posting them the problem has been resolved one way or another.


I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.  ~Edward Everett Hale


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