25 thoughts on “Open Thread

  1. I am pleased as punch to announce that we are on our way toward forming “Triangle Pets Alive,” with a goal of ending the needless killing of adoptable shelter pets in the Research Triangle area of NC (and maybe the whole state)! Through a chance meeting, I was able to connect with a woman who went to the Pets Alive conference in Austin, and she was already working on things and looking for people to help form the group! Sometimes things just work out.

    Now if we could help get something going in Memphis …

  2. I have a question about a fairly feral dog I am working with at my local (no-kill) shelter. He has been there since he was a little puppy and is about a year old now. Was in a foster home for around 2 months but came back because they didn’t have a fence and he kept getting away.
    He’s a sharpei mix, and he LOVES other dogs (is submissive) and I’ve been spending about an hour with him the last two Saturdays. I take him out to the fenced in area to play and praise him and give him a lot of attention (and treats). Then we’ve been sitting in the lobby at the shelter so he can watch and get used to all of the activity there. He’s been great, never tried to bite me and lets me hold and pet him. He’s just really scared.
    My question is, are there any good books or videos I can watch to help me keep helping him? He is a sweetheart and I know he will be a GREAT dog for a family someday.
    Thanks for any guidance you can give!

    1. I would highly recommend Patricia McConnell, PhD: The Other End of the Leash. It isn’t specifically about this subject, but is an easy read and gives loads of insights on ape (us) behaviour vs. canid behaviour. This might help you to utilize the similarities and differences to his advantage and give him more confidence. Also, Calming Signals will help him to become more adept in social situations. And of course, desensitization exercises such as sitting in the lobby, meeting new people (outside of the shelter workers), etc. If they will let you, walking him up and down a section of a moderately busy street may also help, and of course, the biggest help of all: a FULL treat bag and a clicker. You might also check out Karen Pryor’s clicker website for further articles, as she has a wealth of info in her archives.

      1. Trish McConnell also has a slender little book called “The Cautious Canine” that has specific help for shy and scared dogs: http://www.patriciamcconnell.com/product/cautious-canine-dog-training-book

        Also, if the dog is reactive, you could try her little book ‘The Feisty Fido,” http://www.patriciamcconnell.com/product/the-feisty-fido

        Come to think of it, ANY Trish McConnell Book is awesome. I use her “Puppy Primer” in my puppy classes!

    2. Kayce Cover has some excellent techniques. http://www.synalia.com In particular her perception modification exercises will help this dog a great deal. Her techniques were being used extensively and with great success at Woodgreen Animal Shelter in the UK. I use them a lot in my volunteer work with the dogs in my local shelter.

    3. You do not state if the foster home had another dog. I have rescued from the dog auctions and these dogs have led sheltered lives and are normally scared of humans but like other dogs. I have found that if these dogs live with other dogs they learn from my interaction with the other dogs. Many times these dogs will sit in a corner and just watch. Usually within a month they will come out of their shell and become excellent house dogs. I have found that certain noises especially louder ones will bother them.

  3. I stumbled across Hearts Speak, a consortium of artists who donate goods or services to shelters and rescues. Many of them seem to be photographers who take great pictures of cats and dogs. The page below lists members by state.


  4. I thought I would share a nice story with you. Forty-four healthy puppies set to be euthanized at a Georgia animal shelter were rescued by a West Michigan shelter Sunday morning.

    On the shelter’s site, there is a slide show of all the puppies and their names. I think that is a great idea. Hey Memphis, puppies can be adopted with a little effort.

    1. What cute puppies! They already raised the full money that the rescue needed. This needs to happen at MAS-have a rescue take the pups they will be euthanizing!

  5. Lil’ Jett was adopted almost a month ago, BUT (there’s always a but) getting her from North Carolina to Central Florida has proven to be quite the challenge. It seems there are plenty of transports going north, but nothing going south, to me that makes no sense.

    Wouldn’t anyone driving from Florida heading north have to come home?

    Anyway.. the good news. Jett has transport. Cheri and I will drive her to Mooresville,NC to meet Julia… then it’s on to Florida no-stop by way of all volunteer drivers. Way to Go.. Volunteers! Here’s a feel good photo of Lil’ Jett… I’m going to miss her… But, she’ll have such a wonderful life.

    1. Great news! I am surprised you could not find a transport to FL. Jett is a cutie-I loved her pictures!

      1. Thank you… she has been a wonderful addition. I’m so glad I never gave up trying to get her out of that shelter in SC. I was only supposed to keep her for 30-60 days… it’s been 4 months. She’s come along so nicely. I guess it was meant to be for me to have her longer than normal. She really blossomed into a very well behaved, active, friendly little girl. My four legged girls are really going to miss her. I’m already crying and she doesn’t even leave until Friday. My favorite saying is….. Fostering saves lives.

  6. Ugh, I njust learned that for the second time in TWO months, the pound in Duplin County, NC has killed ALL its dogs because of a (alleged) parvo outbreak, even though there were experienced rescuers willing to take many of the dogs and quarantine/treat as needed. This same shelter earned a “not acceptable” rating from the NC Dept. of Ag inspectors and was assessed a civil penalty of $1,000.00 because it was the FIFTH consecutive “not acceptable” inspection of that pound. I firmly believe that they are now inventing imaginary parvo outbreaks because killing all the animals is easier and cheaper than complying with inspections and/or paying the penalties.

    We need no kill in NC!

    1. And it gets worse … I also discovered that friends of the shelter had donated distemper/parvo vaccines to the shelter that were never administered!

  7. This needs to happen at MAS! Two Chicago rescue groups are organizing The Big Pull at the Animal Welfare League. These groups are going to pull as many dogs as they can from the shelter!

    Here is the information about it:

    Here is the Facebook page for the fundraising:

    Here are the Facebook pages for the two rescues:

    Would MAS allow something like this?

      1. ah! They updated since I got it this morning (I didn’t refresh before I posted it here, sorry). I’m glad to hear they found her.

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