23 thoughts on “Open Thread

  1. I have this wild idea. With Memphis having the homeless population that it has, and also a problem with stray dogs that are scooped up by Animal Control and killed, I’d love to start a nonprofit that rescues dogs, spays/neuters/immunizes/temperament tests/vets them, and pairs them with homeless people. We could track our homeless population because we would distribute dog food weekly, which would give more accurate numbers for obtaining other social services for them, and it would give them purpose. And it would give the dogs someone to love them. Now all I need is a few hundred thousand to start up!

      1. PETA had offered San Francisco $10,000 to leave animals out of the program and find the homeless something else to do.
        “A letter that PETA sent to Mayor Edward M. Lee points out, “Handing over troubled animals to troubled people will save neither, and it places both at risk of injury, further trauma, and a bad end.” PETA should know.

      2. Yeah, and never mind that programs with even more troubled people in prison have worked pretty well, at rehabbing both dogs & horses.

    1. Laurie Green founded http://www.safpaw.org/ here in middle Tennessee in 2001. It’s not exactly what you’re talking about but it does have many of the same components. She works tirelessly for the homeless and their animals.

  2. After being fired as Animal Control Director of Montgomery County – here in Tennessee (my second compassionate Directorship) I attended the NO KILL 2012 Conference in D.C . (thank you Shirley for facilitating). I want to share with the group – what I am working on now – wtht a very small group of concerned citizens here in Middle Tennessee. Work that can be done in ANY county with dedication and consistency..

    1) Presenting NO KILL – I have presented NO KILL in four counties – to some Commissioners, Animal Control Directors, and a small group I have started here for Shetler Reform.
    2) These four counties – although in different places in their progress are learning and going forward with research and ofrmative plans to work toward education and shelter reform in Tennessee.
    3) The group I founded has 13 members in 4 counties. We have met 7 times so far. We are obtaining information and statistics through research, attending county Animal Control Committee Meetings, the Tennessee Open Records Act, and online government research.
    4) We have a wonderful attorney member.
    5) I have met with one of our compassaionte State Legislators who is on board to read any and all information and proposals we are working on
    6) Several of us have been to the 4 county Animal Control Shelters to APPLY to volunteer and have been treated terribly at two, banned from one, and greeted very well at one!
    7) We are keeping logs and our plan is to have some initial proposals/presentations for the 2013 – 2014 Budget Year meetings in the counties.
    Why am I sharing this? Because there are only THIRTEEN of us. AND literally only FOUR of us have attended every meeting. But we are all committed to CHANGE. We are doing some very diligent and hard and emotional work THROUGH the system to get our foundation information to move forward for Shelter Reform.

    A small group is BETTER! Like minded people who can focus on the same goals and agenda with a leader – but NO Queens or Divas. Cut o the chase and get the ball rolling. We have thus far literally saved TWO dogs from death here at one of the Animal Control Shelters – it took soooo much – including enlisting media and paying fees etc – but we pushed and workd the system and the egoes within and now these two (one blind and one HW positive) are safe. Through this we have concrete documents about theuch about the attrocities and inconsistencies of these shelters.

    I keep reminding my group that this may take FIVE YEARS – look at Austin! But every step will save more lives long term.

    Think about what YOU can do in the New Year. Can you DEVOTE one meeting time per week and some onlne research time for the next 5 years? If your shelter kills 8,000 per year like one of these does – it has the potential to save 40,000 lives in just one county! Can YOU be a part of that? Can you form a group – can you lead a group? Can you facilitate? There will ALWAYS be follower – but leaders are the catalyst for change. And all of you here on this forum are leaders in many ways!!!

  3. Does anyone know about microchip scanners? I just got a cat from my local shelter that was an owner surrender. They told the shelter that the cat had a microchip. I watched two people with two different scanners (the circle on a stick type) scan this cat and neither one found a chip. I took the cat to the vet and she found the chip with her Home Again scanner right away (even though the chip was PetLink).

    Do the older scanners not indicate that there is a chip if they can’t read it? I thought they would at least tell you that a chip was there…

    1. I once watched a technician at my former vet’s office scan a puppy whom I had personally implanted with a microchip and tell me there was no chip. I looked at the scanner myself and found it was not turned on. After she turned it on, the chip was detected. That said, I have heard of problems reading chips with different scanners (turned on ones) but supposedly that is a problem that has been fixed. I remember when chips first came on the market, each one could only be detected by its own company’s scanner, which was obviously of limited use. But I thought that problem has long since been addressed.

  4. This is probably too much information – but I’ll post anyway. Having worked at several ACs – there are multiple problems with chips and readers. 1) All readers NOW read all chips providing they are ISO Compliant 2) Each chip reader comes with a “Reader Chip” that should be kept WITH the scanner, and should be scanned each time FIRST before testing an animal for a chip (This tells you if the scanner has low battery, sensor issues, or is even turned on!) 3) Chips move around. They can start between the shoulder blades and can then move around the neck or deeper into the muscle 4) There are specific steps to read chips on animals and they must be followed 5) Older scanners or scanners that brand specific should be disposed of.

    Here’s an older study:
    Sensitivity of commercial scanners to microchips of various frequencies implanted in dogs and cats.
    Lord LK, Pennell ML, Ingwersen W, Fisher RA.

    Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA.

    To evaluate the sensitivity of 4 commercially available microchip scanners used to detect or read encrypted and unencrypted 125-, 128-, and 134.2-kHz microchips under field conditions following implantation in dogs and cats at 6 animal shelters.

    Cross-sectional study. Animals-3,949 dogs and cats at 6 animal shelters.

    Each shelter was asked to enroll 657 to 660 animals and to implant microchips in 438 to 440 animals (each shelter used a different microchip brand). Animals were then scanned with 3 or 4 commercial scanners to determine whether microchips could be detected. Scanner sensitivity was calculated as the percentage of animals with a microchip in which the microchip was detected.

    None of the scanners examined had 100% sensitivity for any of the microchip brands. In addition, there were clear differences among scanners in regard to sensitivity. The 3 universal scanners capable of reading or detecting 128- and 134.2-kHz microchips all had sensitivities > or = 94.8% for microchips of these frequencies. Three of the 4 scanners had sensitivities > or = 88.2% for 125-kHz microchips, but sensitivity of one of the universal scanners for microchips of this frequency was lower (66.4% to 75.0%).

    Results indicated that some currently available universal scanners have high sensitivity to microchips of the frequencies commonly used in the United States, although none of the scanners had 100% sensitivity. To maximize microchip detection, proper scanning technique should be used and animals should be scanned more than once. Microchipping should remain a component of a more comprehensive pet identification program.

    1. All Scanners being used currently should meet the following requirements or they are NOT effective:

      ISO 11784/5 FDX-B compliant
      ISO 134.2 KHz frequency – recommended by the AVMA, AAHA, HSUS, SAWA & ASPCA
      Used in most countries around the world
      SHOULD have Bi-lingual modes – English and Spanish
      Some sort of Battery conservation – 45 second auto shutdown
      Accredited by CE
      Some sort of warranty
      Should read ANY ISO (134.2 kHz) microchip from ANY manufacturer including, but not limited to: 24PetWatch, 911PetChip, AKC, AVID, Datamars, Home Again, ResQ, and Trovan.
      SHOULD read 125 or 128 kHz frequency microchips – but these are old and antiquated chips that manufacturers have not distributed since somewhere in 2000 or so…
      (While I don’t agree with the marketing that most of the pets that had these old chips installed are not deceased – most of the new chip scanners don’t really address these older frequency chips any longer)

      1. Hm. Thank you. I would bet that my local shelter is using old equipment and that there was no “reader chip” involved in the procedure that I witnessed (although the “search” around neck, chest, shoulders, etc. seemed thorough). Now I’m wondering how many chips they miss simply because their equipment is out of date.

        I did call them and let them know about it and suggested that they check their batteries (didn’t think to suggest that they know how to turn the things on – yikes!). Sigh.

      2. I have literally seen a scanner go from reading to not reading in minutes because of battery. It’s a procedure and a process and staff simply doesn’t get trained – or care…

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