Humane Society president discusses the surge of pet ownership during the pandemic — and what animals can teach us – The Washington Post

Kitty Block, 56, is president and chief executive of the Humane Society of the United States and CEO of Humane Society International, an affiliate. Trained as a lawyer, Block has spent decades advocating on behalf of animal welfare, domestically and around the world.

During the pandemic, there’s been a huge surge in adopting pets. What do you think are the benefits of that trend, and also, maybe, the potential perils?
In a time of crisis, when people feel things are uncertain and people feel isolated or scared, to be able to bond with an animal is so important. For so many people, it wasn’t just: Oh, it’s convenient. I’m working from home. It’s: I need to have this kind of connection, this unconditional love. And [animals] provide that. That’s who they are. That’s what they do.
— Read on–and-what-animals-can-teach-us/2021/04/27/198f5bcc-9269-11eb-a74e-1f4cf89fd948_story.html


Pushing for change

We are definitely pushing for this to happen in the State of Pennsylvania. Because cats deserve rights and they deserve to keep their claws.

If they choose to deny the rights or deny outlaw cat declaw. I will personally fight harder for our beloved cats.

Petition: Outlaw The Declawing Of Cats

Several people wrote to my friend and co-journalist, telling us causes wasn’t counting or letting them sign. Which is a shame to say the least. Although, this puts us behind on our plans just a little. We have recreated the petition on Change.Org. Change doesn’t seem to have any issues when it comes to counting or letting people sign petitions. Therefore we will be sticking with them, until causes can rectify the issue they are having.

Moreover, this petition to have Pennsylvania outlaw cat declawing is very important to us and those who love their cats. This petition, if enough signatures obtained would change so many lives. Not just cats, yet for their guardians too.

I’m betting you are wondering how? Well first cats would no longer suffer excruciating pain or mental trauma. Second cat guardians will no longer have to watch their fur babies suffer from this barbaric act of cruelty. And third – cats will be able to be cats. (Just as nature intended)

Please sign, share or Retweet the petition, so we may obtain the signatures to get declawing outlawed.

Petition at Change.Org :

Cats Need Claws: #Petition Please Sign

Cats need their claws for the following purposes:

Hunting: Cats are natural hunters. Their retractable claws provide them with traction while running and help them catch and hold onto their prey. If you watch the way your cat plays with its toys, you can see that while your indoor cat doesn’t need to hunt for its next meal, the practice of hunting and chasing is still an instinctual part of your cat’s behaviour.

Stretching: Being able to grip items, like your carpet, allows your cat to twist and stretch the full length of its body, which is not only a good form of exercise, but it’s also a great source of enjoyment for your cat.

Climbing: A cat’s claws are curved to help climb up trees and other surfaces to get to safety. For indoor cats, their claws allow them to grip items such as cat trees or furniture, so they don’t fall or slip.

Leaving their scent: When cats scratch an item, they leave behind a special scent produced from glands on their paws. This allows a cat to leave its signature behind as a message to other cats.

Protecting themselves: A cat’s claws act as a method of self-defence when faced with a predator. While indoor cats have little need to defend themselves, their claws still offer the security of knowing they have a form of protection. Cats also use their claws to communicate certain messages, for example swatting to communicate the need for distance.

Balance: When a cat is declawed, it’s not at all like clipping nails. Declawing is amputating the claw and related bone and muscle tissue. Without their claws, cats often have trouble balancing

Please help us end the barbaric declawing of cats. Outlaw the torture.


If you are having issues with signing causes petitions please let us know, so we can contact causes support with the problem. Or let them know you are having issues.

We desperately need signatures to pass on the petition to the Governor and State Reps. Causes is a legitimate petition site and has helped us make changes repeatedly throughout the years.

Thank you for signing and sharing.

Responsibility With Dogs That Have History

Lately, there have been many news stories where the dog bites another dog or dog bites a person. Many of these dogs have been “adopted” from a rehabilitation rescue centre. I see two problems here with this issue, as my friend and I were discussing over the phone this morning. Rehabilitation rescue centres are supposed to do background checks of a prospective adopter. Some are failing to do these checks, which leads to these dogs who are still being rehabilitated to be set up for failure. Right, well we can’t all blame the Rehabilitation rescue centres either. When the blame now resides on the adopter for neglecting the past history their new dog has. Think about it for one moment if you would, the title in the rescue centre says “Rehabilitation” – common sense would dictate to you that this dog is in the rehab centre for a reason. An issue with his or her past, that led to this point. Now, if the Rehabilitation centre did their JOB correctly, they would have given you a history of the dog’s issue, so you can take proper precautions to prevent any repetitive issues.

Therefore, as my friend is now facing – if a dog bites your dog and the owner knows this dog has a history of “biting” yet didn’t take proper precautions. Then we have a major issue on our hands and a dangerous situation. I don’t care how big or small your dog may be, all breeds of dogs will have an aggressive streak and will have history, and will repeat the offence if you do not properly take precautions. If your dog bites another dog, then that IS YOUR FAULT, no one else.
It is your responsibility as the new guardian to take steps that prevent these accidents! The steps you need to take to prevent these accidents are the following, and yes some of these steps I dislike, however, is necessary.

  1. Muzzles – they are a must do if said dog has a history
  2. Leashing – bite history dogs must be on a strict leashing, hate to say it but it must be 4 to 5 ft and no more. I’ll explain why – this will help you bring the dog closer to you quicker then a longer leash if you suspect your dog is about to lunge. Even if your dog is muzzled they can still do damage!
  3. Avoid – Avoid areas, places and other that would place your dog in a situation that would cause them to bite! For example – if you know your dog is “dog aggressive” STEER CLEAR of dog parks, friends or family with dogs of their own.
  4. If another dog is charging at your dog – You stand firm and calm and yell, NO to the other dog. Sometimes this will stop the charging, other times not. So what do you do in this situation? Well, common sense for those who do walk their dogs daily is to bring deterrents, because as we know, walking our dogs although nice, can be hazardous. Be prepared, bring pepper sprays, or a backpack full of clothes or a blanket.

Pepper sprays – are non-lethal and in most cases will deter the other dog from attacking. While the dog is semi-occupied by the pepper spray, walk away slowly always watching that dog for his next move. If he charges again, the backpack with clothes or a blanket in it should now be placed in front of you as a shield from snapping teeth. Get it? It’s soft non-harmful and will protect you from being bitten. Push the dog back with that backpack, keep at it while keeping your dog from fighting. This will eventually tire the other dog out. Walk away slowly, yet DON’T turn your back on that dog.
There is also air horns the loud noise may deter the other dog from attacking. If not then it will surely make them lose focus if they’re already fighting.

These are non-lethal methods, other methods involve walking sticks, break sticks etc. Which is NOT really necessary. These sticks tend to injure the dogs more so than the actual attack.
The main thing to prevent any dog attack is to watch for the body language seen in chart below:

If this is the body language you see an unleashed dog having- AVOID, do not even step forward, go the other way while keeping an eye on that dog. Common sense. If you miss these signs (which isn’t even possible!) Then you are placing your dog and yourself in danger, period.

Another scenario – little dog runs up to the big dog in an aggressive stance, and you see this yet do nothing. Well, what do you think will happen? You as a guardian have failed, and in this instance, the big dog will hurt the little dog with one bite. Not to mention, you have just allowed the big dog to initiate a DOMINANT TRAIT, which has just thrown any training you may have done out the window. – Square one all over again.

Yes, I’m one of those “pack mentality” thinking people. Because the fact is, dogs are “pack” animals and having a “pack” animal in your household, you do need to show who the boss is. You should be the alpha and show it in your step/presence by acting quick and smart when these things happen. By STEPPING between your dog and the attacking dog. It is YOUR JOB as guardian and Pack Leader to protect your companion or pack, depending on how many dogs you may have… Any logical behavioral trainer would and will tell you this.

In summary – When adopting any dog with past issues, ask for HISTORY. Be PREPARED, AVOID situations. PROTECT your dog from other dogs. Do your JOB and don’t blame others for your mistakes. It’s YOUR RESPONSIBILITY just as it’s the other person’s responsibility.

Also – If you know your dog has issues with others, ALWAYS HAVE A LEASH ON, period.

Romanian Pound Won’t Feed Dogs for 12 Days of Christmas.

WAV Link:

A message from Harmony Fund;

Romanian Pound Won’t Feed Dogs for 12 Days of Christmas

We’ve learned that more than 400 dogs at the Mioveni pound in Romania will be on their own for 12 days beginning on Christmas Eve. No workers are expected to come in over the holidays, leaving the dogs without food and water. Especially during the cold weather when these dogs have only minimal shelter from the cold, mealtime is the most important time of day. We can’t let them go hungry.

Typically, these dogs receive leftover food from the local prison and from a car factory. It is a mix of food scraps that also includes toothpicks, orange and banana peels, napkins and other garbage. We’re in negotiations now to try to change that diet and to make sweeping improvements to the dog pound over the next few years, but the first step is to make sure the dogs don’t go hungry this month.

It will cost $130 each day to provide 23 sacks of kibble for the dogs, plus a bit of extra money to compel workers to come in to work those days. We will need repeat this all the days the workers are scheduled to be on vacation from Christmas Eve straight through to January 4. If your contributions exceed the cost of 12 days of dog food, we will be able to help with more good quality food in January and February and this will also help us feed many other dogs and cats in Romania who are also at risk of going hungry.

Link to help feed the Romanian dogs this Christmas:

To donate by mail, send to: To Donate by Mail

Cheques may be addressed to Harmony Fund.
800 Main Street, Suite 217, Holden, MA 01520, USA

The Dangers Of Rawhide Chews

Rawhide chews are not a good chewing supplement for any companion animal. On top of the bleach and glue chemicals in these products. You have the problem of it splintering off. This can become lodged in their throat, and or can cause damage to their mouth.

Rawhide has always been on the No-no list of veterinarians. If you want to give them a chew toy, the companies Kong and Nylabon make safe chews for companions.

The Best Dog Dental Chews and toys we have found are the following:

• Our Top Pick: Nylabone Dura Chew XL Textured Dog Chew.

• Our Runner Up Pick: Natural Balance Dental Chews.

• Best Budget Pick: Arm & Hammer Gator Dog Dental Toy.

• Best Puppy Dental Chew: Nylabone Puppy T-Rex Chew Toy.

• Best Budget Pick: Outward Hound Bionic Ball.

• Best Puppy Teething Toy: Pet Stages Cool Teething Stick.

• Best Plush Dog Chew Toy: ZippyPaws Warriorz Plush Dog Toy.

We hope this has been helpful for your future chew and toy shopping.

Winter Season and Animal Care

Winter is here and that means colder temperatures. Which also means strays will hide in your car. This being said we are urging everyone to check under their hoods and in their tires, before revving up that engine.

We also urge everyone to not leave their companions out overnight. The only time they should be let out is to relieve themselves and or for a couple of minutes of play time, with supervision.

Think of it like this if it’s too cold for you it’s definitely too cold for them.

Bring them in. We would hate to see more companions wind up in the emergency vet room due to winter exposure. (Frostbite).

These Dogs Are American Heroes, So Why Is Our Government Letting Them Die Painful Deaths

After a whistleblower told the U.S. government that their Explosive Detection Canines (EDCs) sent to the Kingdom of Jordan were being neglected, the inspector general’s (IG) office for the State Department began to investigate. What they discovered was horrifying.

At least ten bomb-sniffing dogs given to Jordan nation over the past 8 years have perished. Some of the dogs were young and healthy pups when they left but died shortly after they arrived in the Middle Eastern nation. 

Zoe, for example, a 2-year-old female Belgian Malinois, died of heatstroke just 9 months after she arrived. Another dog, Mencey, a 3-year-old of the same bread, got so sick in Jordan from a tick-borne disease that she had to be returned to the United States for treatment. He died shortly afterward. Other dogs were found to be parasite ridden, emaciated, and lacking in proper medical attention. In light of their investigation, IG’s office determined that no more dogs should be sent to Amman. Yet, despite the initial complaint and the devastating findings of the IG’s report, dogs are still being sent.

These dogs are American heroes. They keep us and our allies safe by doing the jobs that are too dangerous for humans. The least we could do is make sure that they are well taken care of and have happy, healthy lives.

If Jordan or any other country that receives American EDCs cannot treat them humanely then they shouldn’t be allowed to have them. It’s just that simple.

Please sign the petition and demand that the U.S. State Department stop giving dogs to countries that can’t take care of them.

Blue-Green Algae That Can Kill Dogs Has Just Been Found in New York City Parks


AUGUST 26, 2019

A toxic blue-green algae that is potentially lethal to dogs has been found in three New York City park ponds––the latest place it’s cropped up after leaving a trail of sick and dead pets across North Carolina, Texas and Georgia.

According to the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, the blue-green algae was found in two Central Park ponds and another pond in Prospect Park.

Blue-green algae, also known as Cyanobacteria, is a microorganism that is caused by high nutrients, stagnant water, high temperatures and low oxygen, according to the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation.

“Algae is a natural occurrence that blooms heavily in warm weather and sunlight. Most urban ponds have water high in nutrients like phosphorus, which encourage algae growth,” a statement said. “Most algae are harmless and are important parts of aquatic ecosystems, but blooms that produce blue-green algae (BGA) can be toxic.”

Read more here: