I grew up in the country, rural Northeastern Pennsylvania to be exact. Raised on a beautiful 30 acre farmette, my family always had animals from cats and dogs to poultry, llamas, sheep, horses, and lots of others. It was hobby farming, no production other than new babies in the spring and hayfields to harvest for winter feeding. Over the years our little farm became the home to many pets tossed out along the roadside and left to their fate by others far less compassionate towards them. While from origins unknown, more than one of these unfortunate animals found a place in our hearts and home. Read More »
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Last Thursday was National Pet Fire Safety Day. A house fire has always been one of my greatest fears so when the AKC put out their tips on avoiding this potential tragedy I was shocked to learn that almost 1,000 house fires last year were actually started by the family pets themselves. Some of the pet fire safety tips the AKC gave were obvious to me, but others were more subtle. Planning for the unexpected tragedy is an integral part of responsible pet ownership.
How to prevent your pet from starting fires
Extinguish open flames – Curious by nature, pets will often investigate candles or stovetops. Never leave an open flame, such as a candle or gas stove, unattended and be sure to double check that all flames have been put out before leaving your home. Read More »
Despite the many people and groups involved in animal welfare and conservation, the sad fact is that animal abuse and neglect remains a serious problem USA. Unfortunately, the relevant laws are quite confusing and lack uniformity, and it is often difficult which agency is responsible for enforcing them. It is worthwhile, however, to learn as much as you can about how to proceed – most enforcement authorities are poorly staffed, and rely almost exclusively upon citizen complaints for leads.
State and Federal Laws
Animal abuse is a crime in all 50 states, and almost all aspects of the problem are controlled by state law. The only areas covered by a federal law (the Animal Welfare Act) are commercial animal breeding facilities, zoos, circuses and research labs.
Details, such as what constitutes abuse or neglect and how the laws are actually enforced, vary from state to state. In some states, various types of illegal situations (i.e. dog-fighting, neglect in pet stores, abused animals in private residences) are handled by different law-enforcement agencies. Read More »
Once you acquire the reputation of being a skilled pet-keeper (or of having a soft heart!), springtime may bring with it requests from well-meaning folks that you care for “abandoned” animal babies they have found. In my long experience as a wildlife rehabilitator I have raised Flying Squirrels, Opossums, Raccoons, Muskrats and many other furry friends (the oddest being a Star-Nosed Mole!) – very rewarding work, but not to be taken on lightly. Read More »