Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!!

Happy New Year from the dog house and Astrea too! We're having a low key celebration, just the two of us and the Divine Miss Bette Midler on HBO. But we're ready for a fun and exciting 2011 and hope you are too!

Let's end 2011 with a picture of Astrea doing her favorite thing after playing in the snow in Tahoe...



...she's doing the same thing now as we ring in the New Year...

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Reunited and it feels so good....

Between the holidays and a quick trip up to Tahoe, I've been away from home so Astrea and Jameson have been apart. As much as Astrea loves being with her Grammiecakes and Grampa and having full reign of the house in Tahoe, she did miss her little brother. Last night they were finally reunited and I think we can all agree, they were very happy to see each other again. It's moments like this that make me wonder how people can think animals don't have feelings.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

VERY Happy Holidays at Sacramento Area Shelters!

If you remember I posted a few weeks back that the Sacramento SPCA, Sacramento City Shelter, Sacramento County Shelter and Happy Tails Pet Sanctuary all cut their adoption fees in half in an effort to give 1000 animals home by December 30. A big round of applause to everyone who adopted from a shelter between November 26 and December 29 to help surpass the goal... maybe the the last day will give another good boost in adoptions!! Hopefully everyone is loving the new time with their wonderful addition to their family.



More than 1,000 Animals Find Homes for the Holidays
Animal Care Partners of Sacramento Exceed Lofty Adoption Goal


(Sacramento, CA) -- Animal Care Partners of Sacramento, a coalition of animal care agencies in the Sacramento community, have surpassed their goal of 1,000 adoptions this holiday season. With just a couple of days remaining in 2010, the agencies are very pleased to report that 1,057 animals have been placed in new homes since Black Friday (November 26).

The partnership, comprised of the Sacramento SPCA, Sacramento County Animal Care & Regulation, City of Sacramento Animal Care Services and Happy Tails Pet Sanctuary, are working together to save animal lives in the Sacramento area. The “Home for the Holidays” campaign was the first combined holiday event for the partnership and represents the group’s largest combined adoption event to date. Home for the Holidays, which featured half-off animal adoptions, drew people to the participating shelters and resulted in increased adoptions at all agencies.

“We set a rather lofty goal of 1,000 adoptions, and are very pleased that we not only met, but exceeded this lifesaving goal,” said Rick Johnson, Sacramento SPCA Executive Director. “Each adoption represents both a happy ending and a new beginning for these animals, and we couldn’t be happier.”

Sacramento animal shelters are experiencing an increased number of homeless animals entering their facilities. Much of the increase can be directly attributed to the economy – people losing their homes and/or simply unable to afford the proper care of their pets. Animal Care Partners of Sacramento was formed as part of an effort to work as a community to care for and increase adoption rates of homeless animals in the Sacramento area.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Celebrity Sunday - Holiday Edition

Happy Holidays! I hope whatever you celebrate you're having a wonderful season with family and friends. American Idol Alum Kris Allen and his adorable dog, Zorro would also like to with you a Happy Holiday Season!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas Eve

Merry Christmas Eve! I hope you're all having a fantastic holiday season no matter what you celebrate. Today I wanted to share with you an amazing story coming out of the Sacramento County Shelter. This is the type of story that gives me hope for our future, kids like this are amazing and stories like this always make me misty eyed...

On Wednesday, December 22, a 13-year-old girl named, Hardeep, from a local elementary school went to the shelter and presented her “life savings” totaling $74.76 as part of a promise she made to God. Hardeep's precious Lab/Border Collie mix, Sam, became very sick and had to have surgery after eating a toxin. She prayed to God and asked him to save Sam. Hardeep promised that if Sam was saved, she would give all the money in her piggy bank to charity. If you couldn't already guess the ending, Sam happily recovered and Hardeep kept her promise to benefit the animals at the shelter. What a wonderful way to give back!

Is that not the most precious, heart-warming story??

Happy Holidays and here's to more wonderful people like Hardeep, starting at such a young age, giving back to her community!!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Astrea is my best study aid.

I always tell people getting a dog in law school was the best thing I ever did. When finals time comes and you have to buckle down and study your ass off, there is always that little being that forces you to take some time away from the books to play, walk, or just cuddle. I have met so many people at school who all say the same thing, they wish they were allowed to have a dog in their on-campus apartment; it's the only thing missing from their law school career. Today I read this article and thought it was fabulous. Tufts University is absolutely brilliant for implementing this idea...

Stressed Out Students Take Study Breaks with Therapy Dogs
by Lauren Metz Dec 17th 2010 at 6:08PM



Sounds paw-fect. Students all over the country are freaking out about their final exams before winter break, but Tufts University is easing that stress with the help of some furry friends.

Resident Director Michael Bliss brought in therapy dogs for students to play with while taking a break from studying, working on projects, and writing final papers.

"Every college student has stress around finals, and taking a break out from that with something as easy and simple and loving as petting dogs is really helpful," Michael says.

Nineteen-year-old freshman Chloe Wong loves the idea of playing with the pooches and said, "I hope these puppies make me happy and give me a nice break between studying...just cut the studying a little bit."

Other ways schools are combating stress this time of year? Free massages and yoga classes, short dance breaks in the library, and late-night pizza parties. One California school even dropped 10,000 rubber balls from a dorm roof. Awesome!

Source: Just So You Know @ AoL

Monday, December 20, 2010

Mobile Mondays

This weekend I tried to get my computer a little more in order and in the process discovered more pictures of Sancho I didn't know I had from my old, old phone...I love that gangly awkward puppy stage...

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Celebrity Sunday

I love celebrities who love their animals. I love it even more when I can relate to their frustrations and struggles. This week Pink tweeted "my boy dogs r wearing diapers, and i can't stop laughing at them, which makes them even more pissed off. That'll teach em to pee on mommy's xmas." Not long after she posted these hilarious photos...



Thank God my little Astrea has moved on from the peeing on stuff stage...

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Really Michael Vick?

Michael Vick wants a new dog. I think needs a new public relations coach more than another dog. Now first, he's banned from owning an animal until July 2012 so before anyone flips out, he's not getting a new puppy for Christmas, but seriously, this guy is an idiot. People have finally started to talk about his game again instead of the horrendous things he did to animals. So, why would he pick now to make such a statement? I'm always one for encouraging rehabilitation and I know it's possible, but why would he think that it's an appropriate thing to say right now? I've read some crazy rants by people freaking out about his statement that he wants another dog, but I think Anderson Cooper definitely put it best... "Maybe Vick should start out small...a Pepperidge Farm Goldfish Cracker. They're cute and they're tasty!" Head over to the Anderson Cooper 360 Blog to see Anderson's whole commentary, or watch the video below to see his other suggestion for Vick, "The Kackle Dackle."



And if you're interested in reading about the rehabilitation of the dogs seized from Michael Vick after his arrest, check out The Lost Dogs by Jim Gorant.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Ten Commandments for a Responsible Pet Owner by Paul Harvey

This has been floating around the internet for years, but I just found it today. It's super sweet and a nice reminder of how much our pets love us. Number 10 totally made me cry and think of my little Sancho man.

Paul Harvey's “Ten Commandments for a Responsible Pet Owner”

1. My life is likely to last 10-15 years. Any separation from you is likely to be painful.

2. Give me time to understand what you want of me.

3. Place your trust in me. It is crucial for my well-being.

4. Don’t be angry with me for long and don’t lock me up as punishment. You have your work, your friends, your entertainments. But I have only you.

5. Talk to me. Even if I don’t understand your words, I do understand your voice when speaking to me.

6. Be aware that however you treat me, I will never forget it.

7. Before you hit me, before you strike me, remember that I have teeth that could easily crush the bones in your hand, and yet I choose not to bite you.

8. Before you scold me for being lazy or uncooperative, ask yourself if something might be bothering me. Perhaps I’m not getting the right food, I have been in the sun too long or my heart might be getting old or weak.

9. Please take care of me when I grow old. You too will grow old.

10. On the difficult journey, on the ultimate difficult journey, go with me please. Never say you can’t bear to watch. Don’t make me face this alone. Everything is easier for me if you are there. Because I love you so.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Mobile Mondays

No matter how often they play the "Let's Kill Eachother" Game, these two weirdos LOVE each other and it shows in how they sleep...

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Electrocution - the hidden danger.

I never in a million years would have EVER considered that I could be walking my dog down the street and she could be electrocuted, but it happens. This is a real danger that has caused many individuals great pain and great loss.

On Thanksgiving Day 2010 Sammy, a Seattle dog, was electrocuted and passed away after stepping onto a metal plate on Queen Anne Ave N while on a walk with his owner. Sammy’s owner, Lisa McKibbin, and her mother, Nancy Bostdorff, were heartbroken over the ordeal, but will not let Sammy's loss be in vain. They have taken to the internet to spread awareness about stray voltage in city streets in the hopes of preventing future accidents involving pets, children, and adults.

Lisa has a new blog, Sammys Big Heart where she has shared Sammy's story, information on contact voltage and how to keep yourself and your pets safe. Sammy's death is not an isolated incident. Following Sammy's death people have begun telling their stories of their animals who were shocked by similar sidewalk plates, and there have been stories in the past of humans who have had the same fate as Sammy - check out streetzaps.com who tracks these incidents in several cities across America. It's not just sidewalk plates you have to be careful of. There are stories of injuries caused by light posts, phone booths, manholes, and more.

I encourage you to take a few minutes to read through Lisa's blog, Sammys Big Heart and streetzaps.com to learn how to spot potential dangers and keep yourself, and your pets, safe.

Rest in peace Sammy.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Mobile Mondays

This time of year is more irritating than ever for Astrea because I have a lot of studying to do in preparation for finals. I've found that if I study on the couch she's much happier because she can sleep next to me while I study. This was the view last night as I worked. Such a lady when she sleeps...

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Sanchooooooo...

This weekend I was lucky enough to have my dad and brother come put in new, amazing bamboo flooring in my house. Astrea was not too happy at the beginning of the renovation, but after two days at day care she's too tired to care. While they were laying the floor I had to try to stay out of the way best I could. In the process I found my old digital camera and discovered a memory card inside. I popped it in the computer on the off change that there was something on it. What I found were all the pictures of Sancho I thought I lost. Also - a video from when I first brought him home. Look at my skinny little boy play with his favorite cat. The two year anniversary of his adoption passed a couple weeks go, so this was a nice little surprise.

video

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Home for the Holidays



Are you in the Sacramento area? Do you know someone looking for a pet this Holiday season? Now through December 30 the Sacramento SPCA, City of Sacramento Animal Care Services, Sacramento County Animal Care and Regulation and Happy Tails Pet Sanctuary are holding a joint "Home for the Holidays" pet adoption special. In an effort to find homes for 1,000 animals by the end of 2010 all of these organizations will be reducing their adoption fees by HALF until December 30.

Please, if you or your loved ones are planning on adding a pet to your home this holiday season, adopt from a shelter! There are so many loving, amazing animals just waiting for a good home.

For more information or to view available pets please visit: www.sspca.org, www.happytails.org, www.cityofsacramento.org/generalservices/animal-care/ or www.saccountyshelter.net

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Help Tony be FREE!

So I'm going to go ahead and take this moment to admit that I hate zoos. I HATE them with the fire of a thousand hells. There is nothing I like about zoos. They give me a terrible feeling. To me being at a zoo is a lot like when I volunteer at the shelter and walk through the halls of the animals in their kennels or even when I was working at a prison and would walk past all the cells. There is just nothing about seeing a living being confined that excites me. Even as a kid I don't remember really liking zoos, I always remember liking the playgrounds and the yummy treats, but I don't remember getting excited about the animals. The last time I went to a zoo was about five years ago. While we were there I got a concussion. I took that as a sign from some higher being that I did not need to return to a zoo ever. So my hatred for zoos, makes me really, really hate that stuff like this goes on.

Meet Tony. Tony lives at a truck stop. Tony deserves better.



Free Tony the Tiger is the cause this week at Be the Change for Animals. Please take a few minutes of your time to help Tony. The Animal Legal Defense Fund has filed a petition with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, requesting that they revoke, and deny renewal of, the permit allowing Tony to be on display, but that's not enough! Every email and signature will help. So please sign the change.org petition to deny renewal of the permit and then use the simple Big Cat Action Alert to e-mail the officials in Louisiana and tell them how important it is that Tony be allowed to spend the rest of his years at a big cat sanctuary. He even already has a place lined up. A peaceful sanctuary has been offered where Tony can live his life - enjoying the grass, the ponds, chasing butterflies, relishing enrichment, the best that can be offered for a captive tiger. So please, please, please take a minute and help Tony and then encourage your friends to do so too.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Mobile Mondays

Astrea really does make the best pillow. First James, now my favorite little human Nugget. Life really doesn't get any better than this...

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Wag & Walk for Life!

First, I have to say, Greenies are a life saver. Sancho spent most of his short little life on multiple medications, Greenies Pill Pockets were the only way he would take his pills. He got so excited when he saw me pull that Greenies bag out and it made so me happy that I could get him to take his medication so easily.

Now to the more important part of this post - Wag and Walk for Life - this is an AMAZING campaign by Greenies. It's super easy and if you are walking with your dog anyway, why not click a couple links on facebook and help a vet get a service dog?



So how does it work? Go to the Wag & Walk for Life page and take the pledge to walk a certain number of miles in the next three months (they break it down for you in minutes so you can play for that time too, not just walk). When the total miles pledged reaches 25,000 miles — a walk around the world — Greenies will make a contribution to Freedom Service Dogs to train and place six dogs with disabled veterans. For each additional 25,000 miles pledged, Greenies will fund two more dogs and veterans — up to 12 dogs in total. You're out there playing with your dogs anyway, why not track that time and help a veteran in need?



Also, I'd like to take this minute to say on Monday, November 15, 2010 the world lost a brave solider, Rest in Peace Staff Sgt. David P. Senft.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Mobile Mondays



Yesterday Astrea and I made the trek to go see our family and celebrate my nephew's birthday. As I was driving I could hear Astrea rustling around in the backseat. When I got to a stop light, this is what I found.

video

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Monday, November 08, 2010

Mobile Mondays

This is what an embarrassed dog looks like. Jameson is very excitable, sometimes he gets so excited he can't control himself. He was so excited that his favorite baby came to visit that he his little lip stick was popping out for all to see. We were laughing at him and this was the result...

IMAG0603

True, Undying Friendship

For those people who don't believe that our animals are conscious beings aware of their surroundings and their loved ones - meet Spot... Five months ago Spot's owner Wayne Giroux was killed by a drunk driver. While Wayne's family tries to cope with the loss of their loved one, Spot waits, every day, for her best friend to return home. Seeing spot watching traffic, waiting for Wayne to come home absolutely breaks my heart, but it also makes me cherish my dogs even more. I think Paul Giroux (Wayne's son) said it best, "If you can ever find anything that loves you that much, it's the most precious gift in the world."



Source: CNN.com

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Expose Animal Abusers NOW!!

“A registry of abusers would help ensure animals are not being adopted out to convicted abusers, end the cycle of abuse and increase the likelihood of finding these pets the forever home they deserve.” - California Senator Dean Florez

The Animal Legal Defense Fund has created a website, "Expose Animal Abusers" to help organize signatures and letters from individuals to our elected officials to create animal abuser registries that will allow us to track animal abusers and protect animals. "In story after heartbreaking story, abusers repeat their violent crimes against helpless animals, and often go on to victimize people as well. Keep your animals and your families safe. Sign on to demand that your state require animal abusers register in their communities!" - ALDF

I encourage you to visit ALDF: Expose Animal Abusers, sign the petition and use their easy form to email your legislators TODAY. Then pass the link on and encourage your family and friends to do the same.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Go Giants Go!

Ok, so first, I'll admit I'm not a sports fan. I've been to a handful of professional baseball and football games over the years, but mostly I've gone for beer, garlic fries and friends. I don't have any teams I follow, and on a Sunday you will never find football on my TV. So the World Series didn't excite me too much, but it was nice to see the Bay Area so happy and united. I checked in on the games, but didn't watch any through. That being said... San Francisco is one of my favorite places in the world and the Giants making it to and then winning the World Series just put so many of my friends over the moon that I couldn't help but feel proud to be form Northern California. Today a ton of my friends went to the parade, so I was looking through pictures from the celebration and this picture just kills me. Something about horses in hats is just hilarious...



Source: mlb.fanhouse.com

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Vote for Animals

I hope you're all going out to make your voice heard at the ballot box today. Several States have ballot measures that affect out animals today, if you live in one of these states I hope you're voting to protect our animal friends and family. For those of you wondering what's on the ballot across the country, here's a great article from change.org that sums it up for you.


Political Animals: What's on the Ballot Tuesday for Animals

by Martin Matheny October 29, 2010 05:00 AM (PT) Topics: Hunting, Puppy Mills

Come Tuesday, it'll be over — the election, that is. Millions upon millions of dollars have been spent, the various candidates have more or less effectively demonized their opponents, and the pundits are on standby to rub their hands together and chortle about how they were right all along. (Regardless of whether they actually were, of course.)

But, it's crucial to remember that this is about a whole lot more than tallying up the political score at the end of the day. It's about the kind of policy you want and the kind of country you want us to be. It's about taking advantage of the opportunity to show, with your vote, that you're committed to lasting, positive social change.

How we treat the species we share the planet with is a part of who we are. And, sometimes, we give them a pretty raw deal. Here's where you can spot the change on your ballot next Tuesday, November 2nd:

Missouri: "Prop B" will put puppy mills out of business (Vote: Yes)

The Humane Society of the United States will tell you that Missouri is the number-one puppy producer and exporter in the United States (HSUS estimates that over two-thirds of pet store dogs for sale in New York City come from Missouri, for example). Too many of those dogs are coming out of "puppy mills," where the push for profit means that dogs are treated like factory machinery. Sanitary conditions are appalling, negligence is the rule, and human interaction is virtually non-existent. Proposition B would require that breeders treat their dogs in a humane way, and hopefully force the unscrupulous puppy mill barons out of business, while allowing responsible and humane breeders to continue operating.

Opposing the measure (and spending quite a bit of money to do so) are various agribusiness interests and faded conservative icon "Joe the Plumber." On the side of the good guys, you have the HSUS, state and local animal protection groups, and (we hope) more than 50 percent of the voters, not to mention St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa. If you live in the Show-Me State, this is a no-brainer.

Various States: Hunting and fishing as a constitutional right (Vote: No)


The states of Arkansas, Arizona, South Carolina and Tennessee are all letting the voters decide whether the right to hunt and fish should be enshrined in the states' constitutions. Ten states have similar protections in their constitutions; only one, Vermont's, is more than 15 years old.

Depending on who you ask, the constitutional right to hunt and fish is either a solution in search of a problem, or a really big potential problem for wildlife protection advocates. Some experts suggest that to pass this kind of constitutional amendment will give the more radical pro-hunting elements a leg up in litigation and the ability to take any change to hunting laws (or possibly even minor changes to length of hunting seasons or quotas) to court, while hampering the ability of wildlife advocates to protect animals.

North Dakota: Canned hunting could get canned (Vote: Yes)

This issue has been fairly quiet outside of North Dakota, but responsible hunters and others, including the Humane Society Legislative Fund, are fighting to put an end to "canned hunting," the process of raising more-or-less tame deer and elk and keeping them fenced in to make them easier to hunt.

What's especially interesting about this ballot initiative to ban canned hunts is that it's being spearheaded and supported by hunters, including one very famous name: Theodore Roosevelt, IV, who penned an op-ed recently. We can, and do, argue back and forth about the morality of hunting in general, but can't we at least get on the same page and say that fencing the game in so it's easier to kill them is bad?

In your neighborhood: Go vote

The final, and perhaps most important, animal/political issue to watch is your own elected officials. Before you cast a vote, make sure you're comfortable with where your politicians stand on the issues. If you're talking about Congress, a good place to start is with the Humane Society Legislative Fund scorecard, which will give you a snapshot of where your federal elected officials stand. With issues like the "PUPS" Act and a crush video ban on the radar, Congress is going to play a big role in animal policy in coming months.

If you want the kind of lasting social change that we all say we do, it starts by electing representation who are ready to create that change. And, it's about more than just animal policy. Good animal policy is good people policy, too.

Now, go vote.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Senior Pets RULE!!!!

November is "Adopt a Senior Pet Month" and the folks at Petfinder.com have put together a list of 10 fantastic reasons senior pets rule. If you're looking for a senior pet, try the petfinder.com search widget to your right...



10 reasons senior pets rule: 'Like' this post & pledge to help senior pets!

By Jane, associate producer
Posted November 1, 2010 9:32 AM |

As mom to three "older" cats and one 20-year-old turtle, I consider senior-pet adoption a cause near and dear to my heart.

So this month, I'm challenging everyone to pledge to spread the word by "liking" this post. If you want to do more, we've got ways to help after the jump.

And if you have a friend who's thinking of adopting -- or if you're considering adding a new furry family member yourself -- read and share this list:

10 Reasons Senior Pets Rule:

1. When senior pets are adopted, they seem to understand that they've been rescued, and are all the more thankful for it.

2. A senior pet's personality has already developed, so you'll know if he or she is a good fit for your family.

3. You can teach an old dog (or cat or other pet) new tricks (I do every day with my own cats!): Senior pets have the attention span and impulse control that makes them easier to train than their youthful counterparts.

Mobile Mondays

For her Halloween treat I took Astrea to the park by our house. There was no one there for the first hour we were there so I let her play off her leash. She split her time between chasing things that fly (birds, butterflies, flies) and hunting down rabbit poo to eat. She did take some time to relax in the shade with her momma though...

IMAG0614

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Happy Halloween!!

Happy Halloween from the Award Winning Queen of Hearts and White Rabbit.


Astrea did manage to wear her crown when we were on stage, but that was the only time. I can't find the crown now, I'm pretty sure she hid it somewhere.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Ok Go.... again

Remember the Ok Go "White Knuckles" video? The one with all the awesome dogs? Ok Go posted a little behind the scenes footage of the doggies getting ready for their big video debut! What a smart group of pups.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

What dreams are made of....

I love any type of baby when its sleeping - human babies, puppies, kitties, you name it - i will happily watch it sleep. I stumbled upon this video and fell in love...

Sins of the Father

If you talk to anyone who has known me over the years I think you'll find that they can recognize that there are three areas of the world that are huge in my life - entertainment, animals and law. Animals and Law are a more recent development, but I started working with bands when I was 16 which evolved over the years to also working with actors as well. I feel like this story has taken all three of those interests and combined them into one.

When we see people get arrested and go to jail or prison, very often there is no consideration given to what happens to everything else in that persons life - including their animals. I hope this will open people's eyes to the fact that animals of criminals essentially pay for their owners crimes, often with their lives...



The Quaids' Arrest Could Mean Death for Doggie

10/25/2010 4:55 PM PDT by TMZ Staff

There was a third Quaid in the car when Evi and Randy were arrested in Canada last week ... their beloved pooch Doji ... and TMZ has learned he could pay for his master's sins ... with his life. While Evi and Randy are still "in detention" after being nabbed on an active arrest warrant ... we've learned Doji has been placed in an animal shelter in Vancouver for the time being.

But Doji's days could be numbered -- because according to Vancouver law, any dog that has been impounded for more than 72 hours becomes city property ... and the pound keeper is then given the authority to "destroy, or sell by auction or private sale, an impounded dog."

We spoke to someone at Animal Control in Vancouver who told us they "make every effort to not put the dogs to sleep" ... and generally try to find the animals a home through adoption.

Still, look at this face (the one on the left) ... someone better act fast.

Source: TMZ.com

Monday, October 25, 2010

Mobile Mondays

I've decided to institute Mobile Mondays, a chance for me to post my favorite pictures from my cell phone. Today's pictures are from last Friday. We took Jameson and Astrea to participate in a costume contest at my school. We won for best group. After being out and about for 5 hours the dogs were exhausted. I caught these photos as we left go to have dinner.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

National Pit Bull Awareness Day




Saturday, October 23 is National Pit Bull Awareness Day. I'm glad it's here. In the midst of continuing breed specific legislation, today is a chance for responsible pit bull owners and those of us who love them, to take a stand. Pit Bulls are not the problem. At one point in time, pits were considered a family dog. The first dog I ever let snuggle and sleep with me was Trixie, a Pit Bull my friend was fostering. She was the most loving dog, like all pit bulls, her entire goal in life was to make her humans happy. I miss Trixie, but she was able to move in with a family with a huge yard for her to run and play - so I'm happy with where she is now.

I thought today would be a great day to write about, Chako Pit Bull Rescue (http://www.chako.org/). Chako is a rescue organization in Sacramento, but more importantly - Chako promotes responsible dog ownership, and stands against breed discrimination. Chako is based in Sacramento, California but works on both a state and national level. Chako provides advocacy efforts for responsible dog owners, free and low cost Pit Bull classes, and educational events throughout the year.

If you're interested in getting a Pit Bull, take a minute and read through Chako's Responsible Pit Bull Ownership 101:

Being a responsible Pit Bull owner means being a responsible dog owner, period. Below are the things you SHOULD do as a responsible Pit Bull owner:

1. Walk your dog on a secure leash and collar; if you use a prong collar, back it up since prong collars can pop open. A good leash to have is one with a clasp on each end, such as this one.

2. Contain your dog. Make sure your dog cannot get out of your house or yard by ensuring you take proper containment measures. If you have a yard, make sure your fence is secure, and do not to leave your dog free in the back yard unsupervised for long periods.

3. Steer clear of dog parks when they are being used by others -- dog parks often have dogs that are not appropriate for them. Furthermore, if there is an incident between your Pit Bull and another dog, the Pit Bull is likely to end up being blamed, regardless of who is at fault. Even if your dog is not blamed, a bad incident at a dog park can set your dog up for a lifetime of issues. Check out our blog to read about dog park incidents gone bad.

4. Train your dog and make sure your dog is well socialized to many different people, places, sounds, and experiences.

5. Spay or neuter your dog unless you have a dog that is registered with a legitimate kennel club like the AKC, UKC, or ADBA and you are actively showing your dog or working your dog toward one or more sporting/obedience titles. Never breed your dog unless you are showing or working your dog, it is registered with a legitimate kennel club like the AKC, and you plan to fully health test your dog prior to breeding. Health testing does not mean your dog has its rabies vaccination and was checked out by a vet. Health testing means X-rays of hips and elbows (OFA certification), checking thyroid, heart, and genetic conditions things like ataxia. (If you do not know what OFA or ataxia are, you definitely should not breed your dog.). Sacramento has low cost spay and neuter resources for Pit Bull owners. Chako has our own spay/neuter assistance program.

6. Get regulary vet checkups and appropriate vaccinations for your dog.

7. CGS and ATTS: Consider getting your dog its canine good citizen certification and look into the ATTS.

8. Shhh! Do not allow your dog to bark incessantly and disturb your neighbors

9. Help your dog find its way home. Mistakes happen. Dogs get lost or stolen. Consider getting your dog a permanent form of identification, such as a tattoo or microchip.

10. Scoop poop! When walking your dog in public, make sure to carry poop bags and pick up after your dog.

11. Exercise and Socialize! Make sure your dog gets plenty of exercise and is a part of your family, not left outside alone, whether on a chain, in a kennel or the garage. Dogs are social creatures, and they need plenty of human interaction.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

This is true love...

I'm a sucker for stories of animals adopting babies of another species, or animals of different species become friends or falling in love. This is one of the adoption sort. Such a tiny, tiny kitten and with a big dog to protect her...

View more news videos at: http://www.nbcchicago.com/video.


Friday, October 15, 2010

Be the Change for Animals



October 15, 2010 is the fourth "Blog the Change Day" for Be the Change for Animals. Blog the Change is a chance for bloggers to write about their favorite cause. I was trying to think about what I wanted to blog about today and then I realized, it's you.

When I adopted Sancho I made one of the biggest mistakes I've ever made, I didn't trust my gut. Well, that's not true, I did at first. I did when I made the decision to take him home because I couldn't give him back to those people, but it took me almost 8 months to finally start contacting the authorities. That's a long time. Eight months of dogs being taken in by that organization. Eight months of sick dogs being adopted to unsuspecting families. Eight months of other people not knowing what to do.

You are the biggest voice for the animals. No matter how many organizations there are out there for animals - they are nothing with out you. If you see something that you think looks wrong, if you adopt an animal, are told he's healthy and it turns out he's sick, if you know someone is abusing their animal, whatever it is - if your gut tells you that animal needs help, be their voice. And don't give up. No matter how discouraged you get. No matter how much you want to quit. Don't give up.

I ran into a lot of problems fighting for Sancho. It seemed that everyone I talked to said, "Well I'm not the right person to talk to, Sorry." So for every person who told me they couldn't help me, I tried to find two more I thought could. It's hard work. It's hard because (at least in California) no one has any money so even if they have the authority to help you, they probably don't have the funding or resources to do it. BUT what happened in the course of contacting everyone I could imagine, every now and then I found someone who said, "You know what I can't help you but..." and there was something fabulous that always followed that but. One of the District Attorneys I called had heard of P.E.T.S. In a legal capacity she couldn't do anything for me, but she offered to send me the information she had and was willing to write a letter to anyone I needed her to if it would help. An animal control officer offered to contact all the other individuals who had complained about P.E.T.S. to give my contact information to help me collect more information on the sick and injured animals that had been adopted out. So don't write anyone off, contact anyone you think may be able to help.

And think creatively. I started with the obviously places, then I thought - OK now who is their boss. When I ran out of government agencies. I started considering who else could help me. Non-profit organizations? Media? And always talk to your friends. You never know who they know. And let's face it - in this world its all about who you know.

Speaking up for an animal is hard work. There aren't enough people willing to do it. There aren't enough people who are willing to take the time to do it. There aren't enough people who have the drive to keep going after they've been told no 8 times. But, if you are willing to be that one person who doesn't give up, who will keep fighting when you think there is no fight left in you - you will make a difference. You will help an animal. You may prevent another from being hurt. There are no limits to what you can do. And for every time one person makes a difference, it adds up. If there were more people who were willing to be that one person, there would be far less animals suffering.

If you want to help animals, but don't know how. Call your local shelter. Ask if they need people to come play with the cats or walk the dogs. Clean our your linen closet and take some old blankets and towels to the dogs living in the shelter waiting to be adopted. Do you sew? Make some small cat beds to donate or sew a few bandannas for dogs. Have money but no time? Look for non-profit animal organizations in your area looking for donations. Attend a charity event that donates the proceeds to animals.

Whatever it is you choose to do just know, no matter how easy or how hard it is - you're helping an animal in need and that's a wonderful thing.

Want to see what others have blogged about today?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

She really is my baby...

Once a week Astrea and Jameson's favorite human comes over to play with us. Astrea loves it because he always shares all his treats with her, which I in turn take pictures of. This picture got Astrea on peoplepets.com this week...

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Lucky the Basement Dog...

Have you guys heard about this dog Lucky? One of my friends suggested I sign a petition for "Lucky the Basement Dog." Now, I'm one of those paranoid people who doesn't believe anything on the internet without more to back it up, so before I was willing to sign anything, I wanted to see if this story was for real. So I went to my trusty friend Google and was near tears when I learned this story was real.

This is the way a Seattle Times story about Lucky the Basement Dog starts, "A dog that's been living in the basement of a Shoreline house for most of four years — the past two months with its owner out of town — might be closer to being freed, a spokeswoman for King County Regional Animal Services said Tuesday." His story is absolutely tragic and the thing that makes me the sickest about this story is it didn't have to take this long. Lucky's neighbor started notifying officials about Lucky EIGHT YEARS AGO! At the time poor Lucky was forced to live outside full time and so he barked a lot. So after four years, the owner locked Lucky in the basement.

The thought of this dog living in the basement makes me absolutely sick. I can't imagine how sad he is to be alone all day long. My dogs are really spoiled. They're never alone for more than a couple hours at a time. And I always feel so guilty. If I could I would bring them with me more places. But that's not the point, the point is - how is it that the authorities were repeatedly and repeatedly notified about this poor dog and nothing happened for EIGHT YEARS! This poor dog has been neglected and suffered for most of its life. His owner claims he's not locked in the basement and is fine, but I don't buy it. First of all, she's been on vacation for 2 months and someone is just stopping by a couple times a week to feed him, so how does she know anyway? But also - Just look at the pictures of what he lives in here. And, although he's no longer living in that (Watch the video of him leaving here), it gets worse. Now that the authorities have finally taken Lucky from the home, he's locked in a kennel and will be there indefinitely. Unfortunately - he's "evidence" now. And that makes me sick. I'm currently working on my law degree so I understand the way it works, I know that there are certain rules and procedures that need to be maintained for things to be admissible at trial, but Lucky isn't a bloody glove or a strand of hair from the crime scene - Lucky is a living, breathing animal. What was the point of saving him if he was going from one prison to another? Now granted, there is a good chance that he's in a better place now than he was before - but isn't there some alternative? I don't know what the answer is - but in the mean time, I'm thinking positive for Lucky and hoping the authorities will continue to give in to the public pressure and release Lucky to a rescue to be loved and cuddled like he deserves. If you're interested there are a ton of petitions online to have Lucky released to a rescue - do a quick google search and they'll come up.

Maybe the world needs a rescue organization that fosters animals that are being kept as evidence...

Saturday, October 02, 2010

Not in public!

Astrea and Jameson do not have the pleasure of having a back yard, but they are both small, so it's not that big of a deal. They have plenty of room to play in the house and they always do. None the less, we take them to the dog park frequently so they can really get some running in and play with other dogs. Generally Astrea and Jameson don't really play with each other at the park, Astrea likes to chase dogs playing fetch and Jameson likes to make friends. Every now and then, however, they decide to play with each other. It wouldn't be so bad, but their favorite game to play is "Let's kill each other." Other owners get a little freaked out sometimes and think they're fighting and I have to remind Astrea and Jameson that we're in public so they can't play like they do at home. To illustrate their favorite game, I took this video tonight.

video

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Often overlooked, but always seriously adoptable pets...



September 19 - 25 is "Adopt a Less Adoptable Pet Week," kind of a depressing name because these animals are all seriously adoptable. How do I know? I know because Michael Vick's "un-adoptable" dogs have become not only wonderful pets but pillars of the community (read about it @pawnation.com), I'm a lover of black dogs & cats (read about "Black Dog Syndrome" @pawcurious.com) AND I know the greatest cat ever - Indie.

That's him in a box, ready for the big move to his new house this summer.

Indie is my friend Frankie's kitty and he's wonderful. We often joke about him being a clearance kitty, but seriously he is special. No one wanted poor Indie. When Frankie walked in they must've just known that it was a perfect match because they gave Indie away for free. So why did no one want to adopt this amazing kitty? Not only was Indie black he was already a grown up, and he isn't "perfect." Apparently no one believed that a cross-eyed, loud breather could be so amazing. But everyone who knows him loves him because he is incredible. Not only does he love to cuddle people, he loves to play with dogs! He and Astrea get along great and I fully believe that Indie was one of Sancho's best friends.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Ready? Ok GO!

So I am not a huge fan of Ok Go, I've never bought an album, but I think their videos are just fantastic. Always incredibly creative and like nothing you've seen before. Their latest video for "White Knuckles" is no exception. The video is awesome and the best part? All the wonderfully talented dogs in this video are rescues!!! Take a minute to watch and be very impressed by dogs and people alike!



Thanks okgo.net and aspca.org

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Search and Rescue Dogs of America

Nine years ago I was 18 years old, fresh out of high school, two weeks into my adventure of moving cross country from California to New York when I stood atop my dorm on Long Island watching the smoke and ash travel across the New York City skyline. Today we remember and honor the 2976 human lives that were lost, Sirius the search and rescue dog who perished, the 10,000 humans and 300 dogs who day and night worked tirelessly on the rescue effort.



Source: The Dog Files


Please help strengthen disaster response in America and support the Search Dog Foundation by making a donation today.

Sunday, September 05, 2010

An oldie, but a goodie...

I don't know how many times I've seen this video, but it is just incredible. I could watch it every day. I love hero dogs.






Saturday, September 04, 2010

Pretty, Pretty Princess

When I brought Astrea home and she was a cute little ball of fluff I dressed her up a couple times. She hated it. Since then she has grown to hate dogs in clothes more than she hates Santa or Michael Jackson. Well, maybe not Santa, she really, really hates him. Anyway, she takes her aggression out on her brother when he's wearing clothes. Today Jameson was going to a party so he had on his skull shirt and his harness, Astrea was not happy. . .


video

Monday, August 30, 2010

Astrea, is kind of like a little kid. She likes buttons.

So while Jameson is a special little guy, Astrea is my little genius (who fights for justice on the weekends). I decided this weekend she would make a great service animal for a very little person with a very little house.

Back in May when Athena came and stayed with us for a couple weeks, she discovered the joy of riding in the car with her head out the window. Because she's little she has to stand up on the arm rest to stick her head out. Now, since I'm super paranoid, it makes me very nervous so her leash is always buckled into my seat belt and i have a hand on her leash. The second I get too nervous, window goes up. I never in a million years considered what would happen as a result. One day we were driving around and suddenly one of the backseat windows was down. I figured I must've hit the button and not noticed. So I rolled it back up. Few seconds later, its down again. I look in my mirror and Astrea is sticking her head out the window. Little Miss Astrea didn't like me controlling her window time, so she took it upon herself to learn to roll down the window herself. When I have friends in my car I turn the window lock off, and I often forget to turn it back on. Then before I know it, Astrea is back there, rolling the window down again.

This weekend I took the dogs to Tahoe to run around and play. Now, Astrea is a totally a TV watcher. The TV at home is on the wall above the fire place. Sometimes I think she may think its a window. Every now and again (its happening less often) something or someone will come on TV and she wont like them so she'll run out onto the patio barking and looking for them. The TV in Tahoe is an older big screen, so its huge and there is a button about two feet off the ground you push to turn it on/off. On Saturday night I had the TV while I was cooking. Something came on tv that she didn't like and she was pissed. She went right up to the tv and jumped up and started barking. And then the tv was off. Just by luck she hit the button. I decided to listen to the radio for a while. Later, we were watching Forrest Gump and falling asleep on the couch. The Vietnam scene came on and she freaked out at the tv. Jumped up and turned the tv off again. She was pretty proud of herself.

The next day I decided to soak my achy old lady hips in the spa. After me splashing her and her drinking some of the water (gross) she discovered the jets button. It was like having the jets on some crazy cracked out setting. Now I don't know if she really knows what she's doing when she's rolling down the window, turning off the tv and playing with the jets - but she keeps me on my toes, and makes me think if I really took the time, I could probably teach her how to do some really helpful things around the house.

In addition to being my little smarty pants, she's also the Welcome Wagon. Today I was coming home and I made a new friend. I called him Pebbles. Pebbles was lost, didn't have any tags on and was rocking a craaaaazy haircut.


Pebbles was scared. He was really scared of Jameson. I mean terrified. Tail between the legs, cowering, hair standing up his back. And of course, Jameson doesn't take rejection well so he just went crazier because he wanted Pebbles to like him. So while I held Jameson on the couch (if I bear hug him long enough he finally gives in and relaxes) Astrea and Pebbles stared at each other. Once Pebbles relaxed Astrea came and just stood by him for a bit. When he was ready she sniffed his booty. And then they just looked at each other. Astrea showed him around a bit. Showed him where to hide under the table. Took him to the kitchen, I assume to encourage me to give them treats. When I put Jameson down on the floor, the excitement of a new friend took over again and he flipped out causing Pebbles to hide in Jameson's old hiding spot.



It was about this time we were ready to go, so I put a leash on Pebbles and we headed to the vet. I didn't want to take Pebbles to the shelter, I figured he had to belong to someone near by, so we decided the vet was the best option. Everyone who saw Pebbles at Petsmart/Banfield said the same thing, "Hey I know you." So my response, "Really? Do you know his name?" Of course no one knew his name. Even the nurses knew him, well actually it was the haircut. They knew him and knew he had been in to have some masses removed, but couldn't remember his name. Lucky for Pebbles he was microchipped. His name is Sonny. I like Pebbles better. So I kept calling him Pebbles. After one disconnected phone number and a voice mail, we got ahold of Pebbles' owner. He lived just down the street, so we took him home. I think he was tired from his adventure and ready to go take a nap with his family. His dad told me they were going to hop in the car and head back down to Petsmart to get some tags made for Pebbles. :)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

This is why I love Coco...

As I said before, I love Coco. I really do. Before I came to law school I planned to do public relations. I spent most of my life between the ages of 16 and 24 traveling the country seeing my favorite bands, going to awards shows and tv show tapings. I also worked several jobs in the entertainment industry that were really, really fun. In the course of my adventures I met a lot of people. A lot of people who have big names. For the most part those people were all very kind and wonderful. There was the occasional jerk who sent me walking through the streets of san francisco at 10pm because the bread wasn't fresh enough, but as I said, for the most part everyone was wonderful.

I think Coco (and her husband Ice T) fall into the category of wonderful. After my Tribute to Spartacus entry I tweeted the post. Imagine my surprise when Coco not only direct messaged me, but also retweeted my blog! So, just so you can share in my excitement... I have saved the posts for all of posterity. BTW please notice her epic booty. It is my goal in life to have a booty like that.



And just so this isn't a post where I die a little on the inside because I love Coco so much, here is my new favorite video. I'm waiting for a video of Spartacus looking this cute and hilarious...





Sunday, August 22, 2010

Oh stumble, Well you came and you gave without taking...

As i've said before, my addiction to Stumble is sick. But when you spend your whole life on a computer, its a nice way to just take a quick 3 or 4 minute break then get back to work. And sometimes I come across gems like this video. I cannot tell you how many times I've seen Jameson run full force toward the couch, jump and end up like this little kitty...

Monday, August 16, 2010

I love a little Coco with my Ice-T...



I am not ashamed to admit, I am slightly obsessed with Ice-T and his wife Coco. Yes, Ice-T the rapper and the actor from Law and Order: SVU. His wife has a huge butt. I mean, huge. It's epic. Google it. As a part of my love for them, I totally follow them on twitter. When they adopted a super cute dog, Spartacus, I started following him on Twitter too.

Spartacus mostly posts cute pictures of him doing different things. A few weeks back he posted this amazing picture:



I saw that and went, "oh my gosh, Jameson!" So I did what any sane person does, I tweeted a picture of Jameson back to Spartacus to let him know, he wasn't alone. So because I was so stoked when Spartacus replied back to me, here are some of my favorite pictures of Jameson sitting around the house.






Saturday, August 14, 2010

School Days, School Days Here Come the School Days...

In honor of starting my third year of law school this Tuesday, I thought I'd do a tribute to law school, animal style...

I don't study in my office too often, but when I do Astrea likes to sleep under my desk


When I study in bed, she sleeps at my feet...


And when she's not sleeping through my studying, she's trying to get my attention...

My old roommates' cat Honey liked to eat my Contracts book

Astrea is just as bored as I am by Property.

I am not above bringing my dog to class... I think this was Entertainment Law

I guess I'm supposed to be able to type like this...

Even in the car, she's studying hard. Look at those flashcards!

Jameson likes to let the computer keep him warm.

I don't think a book can keep him warm, but he'll sure cuddle up anyway

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