24 thoughts on “Open Thread

  1. Starting in October, Los Angeles will gain an estimated $1.6 million in annual revenue by cracking down on violators of “quality of life” codes with fines instead of warnings. Most of those initially targeted will be pet-owners.


    “The revenue projection was based on a previous year’s 55 percent rate of processed citations. Often citations could not be enforced due to so-called ‘informational deficiencies’ such as no address. Revenue could be much higher since most of the violations are related to the Department of Animal Services and a home address is more easily obtained.

    “Once approved, the animal codes citation program will be launched citywide immediately. The remaining violations will be phased in over a three month period, starting with certain police bureaus in various sections of the vast city. Three of the areas that will be in the initial phase also happen to contain some of the poorest sections of the city.

    “Critics worry that ACE [the new program opening the way to more vigorous enforcement] could be unfairly enforced on those who are least likely to pay. Cities around the country have been known to use similar programs as revenue generators by jailing violators for nonpayment, who then must also pay bond. There is also concern that the opportunity for increased revenue could result in unofficial quotas, pressuring officers to issue citations when a warning would be more appropriate.”

    As you can see by the URL, this is by a care2 writer. I’m accustomed to thinking of petition-generating organizations like care2 as not fully serious when it comes to real reporting, but this piece was quite well done and drew the appropriate parallel, which is to how minor code violations have been used in Ferguson, MO and other cities: a way of generating money by deliberately burdening the poorest residents.

    One more reason I continue to see the animal shelter system as not just cruel and violent in its treatment of animals, but also classist and racist in its financial framework.

    Oh, and collections will be handled by an outside vendor. What could go wrong?

  2. Any of my cat savvy friends out there . . . it’s a long story, but the gist is that I now have a young (say around 6 months) cat who was thrown out of a van yesterday afternoon. A neighbor caught her from his garage roof and she’s in a dog crate in my garage. I don’t think she was physically hurt, but emotionally she’s a mess (duh). Any ideas for how to help her feel safe and secure? Right now she will rub and head butt, but also hissing and growling. Last night I let her lose in the garage because she had spilled water all over the cage and I had to clean it. Catching her took a while and she turns into a little monster when she feels trapped. I have no idea what her life was like to this point, but for a little while this morning, I had nothing but rubbing and loving. When it was time to close the crate door, the hissing started again.

    Just looking for some thoughts on how to help her move through this. She will be killed if she is taken to a shelter right now because of her trauma. I’m doing everything I can to not let that happen.

    Thanks . . .

    1. Do you have a room you can “give” her? It would give her a bit more space to feel less trapped in. It would also give you more space to work with her. If you can set up a room, then just spend some time in there. Reading aloud if you can, or browsing the internet on your phone, something, so that she can experience you being there without being a threat.

    2. In addition to what Ruth suggested, I’d recommend a lot of patience, and plenty of bribing her with things she likes–cat treats (shake the bag first) and toys, possibly an enticing feather wand. Few cats can resist the ocean fish Fancy Feast with the royal blue label, or chicken or turkey baby food. Read the label to make sure it does not have inappropriate ingredients like onion, and open the jar in the room with her. She will learn to recognize the distinctive sound and come running. Avoid pursuing her if at all possible, rather lure her to you. No cat likes to be chased, especially not a traumatized one. Also, you can get a soft rubber grooming brush called a Zoom Groom, which she may enjoy being brushed with.

    3. Does she hiss/growl when she feels confined/trapped or other times?

      I wonder if she was confined before she was tossed and she’s got an association, especially with cage-type areas?

      Do you have a phone or camera where you could record the behavior so we can see it?

      1. Thanks, everyone. It’s simply not possible to bring her indoors and put her in a room. It’s a very complicated situation, but I have had to put in a door to divide my house into two zones for the four indoor cats I have. My boy is in hospice and on meds that cause he to be very aggressive with other cats. So there simply is nowhere to put the little one (named her Fiona). I wish I could because she hates being confined. I also have an outdoor girl who has an insulated small room in the garage so she can be safe and warm during our Michigan winters. So the garage proper is truly the only space where Fiona can safely be. I worry about letting her lose in the garage because she could easily scoot out the door. I don’t know if there’s a way to create a larger area without her being able to get to the outside door. And I can’t afford to buy a larger 2 or 3 story cage, either.

        She will be going to my gen ed vet as soon as I can get an appointment. This woman is a vet behaviorist besides so I’m hoping for some guidance. I cannot keep Fiona long term. We have a precarious balance with the ones I already have and I fear what another one might do to that. My goal is to keep her safe and find a foster home where she can be rehabilitated so she will be able to be adopted. Right now I fear she would absolutely freak out in a shelter environment and our AC is high kill, particularly cats and strays.

        I am doing the other things, just hanging out, not pushing interactions, and she gets treats and has a radio on 24 hours on a classical station. I spend as much time with her as I can. Lots of patience, lots of treats. It’s just not an idea situation at all. Maybe if I can find a smaller hidey place (the carrier is in the crate right now) she will have more moving around room. Mikken, I definitely think she does not like being confined, but trying to capture her (she would not be lured) last night was high drama for both of us. Won’t put us through that again.

        Thanks for your helpful thoughts. Sometimes it truly does take a village . . .

  3. Amarillo Animal Control need to be told by many people that they are being cruel to the animals in there care. The dogs there get no beds or blankets. They were asked if kundra beds could be donated and they said NO! Maybe some public pressure would help them change their minds. The following link is how I discovered this. https://www.facebook.com/amarillo.animal.shelter.stop.the.abuse/photos/a.1505514003021454.1073741971.1412710755635113/1505514423021412/?type=1&theater

  4. Thanks, Anne Thomas. Fiona has settled right down and is doing very well – no hissing, very affectionate, purring and wanting to be held. The biggest problem right now is finding a rescue to take her. I’m guessing she is about 4 – 6 months old, seems healthy, used her box, moving around well, alert, playful . . . everything a kitten should be. And now she’s safe, but I can’t keep her long.

    Any Michigan folks who know of a good adoptive home or rescue, please be in touch.

  5. Good news is is that Fiona is home with her family. I think/hope she will now be an indoor only cat. Huge sigh of relief and answered prayer. She apparently climbed into a van with the asshats who tossed her at a garage sale. Must be they decided to just toss her out rather than take her home. She’s home and safe now!

    1. I’m saddened by this loss. I read that it’s possibly a suicide, which makes me feel even more upset, knowing how it can so hard to get through life’s struggles.

  6. Jade is in for spay today and another pelvis xray to check for any changes since the last one. Vet just called, said the femoral head on the right side stopped growing. It’s notably smaller than the femoral head on the side she wasn’t squished by a truck on. So the prognosis remains the same – FHO in future IF she becomes lame.
    I Googled and it sounds like she has necrosis of the femoral head, apparently common after traumatic injury:


    If anyone here has any experience with or input regarding this condition, I am all eyes.

    1. Darn anyway – no experience but I hope that you have no need for the surgery. Does this mean that Jade is officially a member of the family?

      1. I decline to answer on grounds that my answer may incriminate me. And by incriminate I mean cause Billy to embark on a rampage with whatever cutlery is handy.

Leave a Reply