ARL Celebrates Today’s SJC Ruling

Decision provides critical tool for preventing animal cruelty

We’re celebrating the decision of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC)—the first animal-related decision in 40 years!—to extend the emergency aid exception to the warrant requirement to animals.

The emergency aid exception allows police to enter a home without a warrant when they have objectively reasonable belief that there may be someone inside who is injured or in impending danger of physical harm.

The office of Essex County District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett argued the case before the SJC for applying the emergency aid exception to animals.

The ARL joined several local officials and national organizations including the Attorney General, the Animal Control Officers Association of Massachusetts, and the Animal Legal Defense Fund in filing a friend of the court brief in support of extending the emergency aid exception as well.

11-6 See something say somethingToday, the SJC issued an opinion agreeing the exception applies “with equal force” to animals:

“In light of public policy in favor of minimizing animal suffering in a wide variety of contexts, permitting warrantless searches to protect nonhuman animal life fits coherently within the existing emergency aid requirement, intended to facilitate official response to an ‘immediate need for assistance for the protection of life or property.’”

The timing of the ruling during Prevention of Cruelty to Animals month is particularly meaningful to our ongoing efforts to rescue animals from suffering, cruelty, abandonment, and neglect. Four out of five cases of animal cruelty remain undiscovered; reporting concerns to your local authorities is critical to prevention.

Learn more about the ARL’s See Something, Say Something campaign.

Congratulations to the office of Essex County District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett for successfully arguing the case!

 

 

Watch for 7 Warning Signs of Animal Cruelty, Says Animal Rescue League of Boston

As part of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month, ARL encourages public to report concerns to local authorities

 Boston, MA – During Prevention of Cruelty to Animals month this April, the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) wants to help the public better understand the importance of reporting suspected animal cruelty to local authorities.

“All too often, animal cruelty remains undiscovered,” explains Mary Nee, president of ARL. “By many estimates, four out of five cases remain concealed from authorities. Public awareness and reporting suspicions of animal cruelty play a critical role in prevention.”

According to the National Link Coalition, a strong connection exists between animal abuse and other forms of family and community violence. Law enforcement agencies including the International Association of Chiefs of Police have also expressed concern about the relationship between animal cruelty, domestic violence, child and elder abuse, and other violent crimes.

“Breaking the self-perpetuating cycle of violence, protecting animals, and creating safe, humane communities has to be a priority for us all,” adds Dr. Martha Smith-Blackmore, vice president of animal welfare at the ARL.

See Something Tear Card Image

During Prevention of Cruelty to Animals month, pick up an emergency contact card from an ARL animal shelter in Boston, Brewster, and Dedham.

While most members of the public recognize that punching, kicking, burning, choking, or hitting an animal with an object are acts of animal cruelty, there are also more subtle signs to watch for that could indicate mistreatment, neglect, or abuse. 

To help the public better understand the issue, the ARL offers 7 warning signs of animal cruelty:

1.                Howling or barking for a sustained period of time or hearing an animal cry in pain with higher pitched, more persistent vocal sounds than usual.

2.                Singed, matted, chronically or excessively dirty hair or fur.

3.                Wounds, unusual scars, hair loss, frequent limping often on different legs, or signs of improper nutrition such as weight loss or prominent visible ribs.

4.                Animals kept caged or tied with little room to move for long periods of time or without regular interaction with people.

5.                Lack of protection from the weather or fece- or debris-strewn living areas for animals.

6.                Collars, leashes, or halters so tight they visibly dig into the animal’s face or neck.

7.                A large number of animals coming or going from a property.

If you know or suspect animal cruelty, Nee says contact your local authorities as quickly as possible: “We can all give a voice to victims of animal cruelty if, when we see something, we say something to local law enforcement.”

 Visit an ARL animal shelter in Boston, Brewster or Dedham in April to pick-up a “See Something, Say Something” emergency contact card. Learn more about preventing animal cruelty at arlboston.org/take-action.

About the Animal Rescue League of Boston

Founded in 1899, the ARL is dedicated to rescuing domesticated animals and wildlife from suffering, cruelty, abandonment, and neglect. In 2013, the ARL served over 14,000 individual animals through our shelters in Boston, Brewster, and Dedham, and our law enforcement, rescue, and veterinary services. The ARL receives no government funding and relies solely on the generosity of supporters to help animals in need.

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Winter Weather Closure at ARL Brewster

Due to the impending storm, the ARL’s Brewster shelter will be closed to the public tomorrow, Wednesday, March 26.

The snowy scene from our Brewster shelter.

A snowy scene from the ARL’s Brewster shelter earlier this winter.

A very special thank you to the members of our dedicated staff in Brewster who will keep the animals in our care company as the winter winds blow!

Our Boston and Dedham shelters currently plan to open as scheduled.

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for real-time updates on storm-related closures and activities!

 

199 Animals Removed From Lynnfield Home

Animal Rescue League of Boston and MSPCA-Angell partner in response to large-scale hoarding situation

MEDIA AVAIL: Monday, March 10, 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm, ARLBoston’s Boston Shelter, 10 Chandler Street, Boston, MA

Boston, MA – At the end of February, the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) partnered with MSPCA-Angell to remove 199 animals from a home in Lynnfield, Massachusetts.

In one of the largest hoarding situations the ARL has responded to in recent years, a wide range of species including dogs, cats, birds, and reptiles lived in unsanitary conditions, stacked in cages and crates in different areas of the home.  All of the animals were voluntarily surrendered to the ARL and MSPCA-Angell.

After the ARL’s Rescue Services team removed animals from the home, 60 came to the organization’s Boston shelter.  According to Dr. Martha Smith-Blackmore, vice president of animal welfare at the ARL and a member of the veterinary response team that provided medical care to the animals as they arrived at the shelter, many had serious health issues resulting from neglect.

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Danielle Genter, senior rescue technician at the ARL, comforts one of the dogs removed from a hoarding situation in Lynnfield, MA, at the end of February.

“When people suffer from the complex psychological conditions that lead to animal hoarding, they become overwhelmed with caring for all the animals they accumulate,” explains Dr. Smith-Blackmore.

“In hoarding situations, both the owner and the animals need help.  If you see something that suggests an animal hoarding situation, say something to your local authorities.”

The ARL’s veterinary and shelter staff mobilized a temporary isolation area for the cats requiring long-term medical treatment and found places for them at the Pat Brody Shelter for Cats in Lunenburg, where they will continue to receive rehabilitative care.  The ARL also asked Jabberwock Reptiles in Winchester for assistance taking in the reptiles rescued from the home, including sickly blue-tongued skinks and snakes.

The 6 dogs and 13 birds remaining at the ARL’s shelters continue to make progress in their recovery.  The Boston shelter has already begun to identify potential adopters for the shy, but very sweet dogs.

The ARL encourages anyone looking to help these animals and others like them recover from neglect to visit arlboston.org for more information.

About the Animal Rescue League of Boston

Founded in 1899, the ARL is dedicated to rescuing domesticated animals and wildlife from suffering, cruelty, abandonment, and neglect.  In 2013, the ARL served over 14,000 individual animals through our shelters in Boston, Brewster, and Dedham, and our law enforcement, rescue, and veterinary services.  The ARL receives no government funding and relies solely on the generosity of supporters to help animals in need.

Media Avail
Monday, March 10
1:00 pm – 2:30 pm
Animal Rescue League of Boston
Boston Animal Shelter
10 Chandler Street
Boston, MA

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5 Reasons Spay/Neuter is Good for Pets AND the People Who Love Them

Animal Rescue League of Boston to host #ARLAskaVet twitter chat on World Spay Day

Boston, MA – According to the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL), a large portion of the companion animals coming into the organization’s shelters comes from unplanned litters of kittens and puppies.  National studies have also found that among pet owners who indicate their pets had at least one litter,  59% of cat owners and 38% of dog owners described the litter as “unintentional” or “accidental.” 

“Spay/neuter represents one of the most humane ways to lessen the number of homeless animals in our communities,” explains Dr. Edward Schettino, director of veterinary medical services at the ARL.  “The surgery comes with low risks and offers a variety of benefits to pets and the people who love them.”

01-11-14 Dr Schettino

Dr. Edward Schettino, director of veterinary medical services at the ARL, will participate in a World Spay Day #ARLAskaVet twitter chat, on February 25, beginning at 12 PM (EST).

In recognition of Spay/Neuter Awareness Month this February, the ARL encourages pet owners to consider the following five reasons to spay/neuter companion animals:

  1. Reduce the cost of pet ownership.  Particularly given the number of low-cost options available in Massachusetts, the cost of caring for an unplanned litter far outweighs the cost of having a pet spayed/neutered.
  2. Diminish nuisance behaviors.  Neutering resolves the vast majority of marking behaviors—even when a cat has a long-standing habit.  Howling in cats and excessive barking in dogs eases and even disappears after surgery.
  3. Prevent aggressive behaviors.  According to the National Canine Research Foundation, approximately 92% of fatal dog attacks involved male dogs, 94% of which were not neutered.  Neutering male dogs and cats reduces their urge to roam and fight with other males.
  4. Increase longevity.  The USA Today reports neutered male dogs live 18% longer than unneutered males, and spayed females live 23% longer than unspayed females.
  5. Improve health outlook.  Neutering males cats and dogs before six months of age prevents testicular cancer.  Spaying female cats and dogs before their first heat offers protection from uterine infections and breast cancer. 

The ARL will also host an #ARLAskaVet twitter chat on World Spay Day, February 25, 12pm-1pm.   Join Dr. Schettino and fellow animal welfare supporters to talk about:

  • Ways to encourage more people to spay/neuter their pets
  • Common myths about spay/neuter
  • Health benefits and cost savings

To participate in the conversation, follow the ARL on Twitter @arlboston and submit your questions using the hashtag #ARLAskaVet.  Find more spay/neuter resources at arlboston.org/spay-neuter.

About the Animal Rescue League of Boston

Founded in 1899, the ARL is dedicated to rescuing domesticated animals and wildlife from suffering, cruelty, abandonment, and neglect. The ARL receives no government funding and relies solely on the generosity of supporters to help animals in need.  To learn more about the ARL, visit arlboston.org.

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35 Farm Animals Rescued from Unlicensed Traveling Petting Zoo

Animal Rescue League of Boston and MSPCA-Angell Work Together to Rescue Sickly Animals from the Cold

MEDIA AVAIL: Tuesday, February 11, 11 am – 12: 30 pm, ARLBoston’s Dedham Shelter, 55 Anna’s Place, Dedham, MA

Boston, MA – Over the weekend, the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) and MSPCA-Angell worked together to rescue 35 cold and emaciated animals from an unlicensed petting zoo in Ludlow, Massachusetts.

02-10-14 Ludlow Rescue Goat & Brian

ARL Rescue Services Manager Brian O’Connor carries one of 12 animals rescued from an unlicensed traveling petting zoo in Ludlow, MA, on Friday evening.

The ARL’s Rescue Services team brought 12 of the rescued animals, including mini-donkeys, donkeys, ponies, sheep, and goats, to the organization’s Dedham Shelter for immediate care. The MSPCA-Angell’s Law Enforcement department transported the more severely emaciated and sickly animals including pigs and alpacas to the organization’s Nevins Farm facility.

On Monday, the MSPCA-Angell’s Law Enforcement department charged the animal’s owner Dean Manual of Ludlow with multiple counts of animal cruelty. Manual, 43, faces up to 36 counts of animal cruelty with additional pending charges for assaulting a law enforcement officer and resisting arrest.

As the ARL and MSPCA-Angell tended to the animals on Friday evening in Ludlow, many neighbors expressed concern for the health of the animals and asked for information about contributing to their care.

The organizations encourage anyone looking to help these animals and others like them recover from cruel living conditions to visit arlboston.org or MSPCA.org for more information.

Since their arrival, the animals at the ARL’s Dedham facility have received proper hydration, nutrition, and veterinary care.   Shelter staff report all 12 continue to rest and recover from living in cruel conditions.

About the Animal Rescue League of Boston

Founded in 1899, the ARL is dedicated to rescuing domesticated animals and wildlife from suffering, cruelty, abandonment, and neglect. The ARL receives no government funding and relies solely on the generosity of supporters to help animals in need.

About the MSPCA-Angell

The MSPCA-Angell is a national and international leader in animal protection and veterinary medicine and provides direct hands-on care for thousands of animals each year. Founded in 1868, it is the second-oldest humane society in the United States. Services include animal protection and adoption, advocacy, humane education, law enforcement, and world-class veterinary care. The MSPCA-Angell is a private, non-profit organization. It does not receive any government funding nor is it funded or operated by any national humane organization. The MSPCA-Angell relies solely on the support and contributions from individuals who care about animals.

Media Avail
Tuesday, February 11
11 am – 12: 30 pm
Animal Rescue League of Boston
Dedham Animal Shelter
55 Anna’s Place
Dedham, MA

 

 

Attention Pet Owners and Animals Lovers: Spread the Love this Valentine’s Day!

4 purrfect gift ideas from the Animal Rescue League of Boston

Boston, MA—Looking for something especially meaningful for the companion pets and people in your life this Valentine’s Day?

The Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) has four purrfect gift ideas that spread the love and help find homes for shelter pets:

  1. Give your special dog a heart-shaped treat.  Nothing says “I love you” to the canine companion in your life like a tasty treat or dog cookie.  Now through February 14, Polka Dog Bakery will donate 50% of proceeds from all Valentine’s Day treats to the ARL.
  2. Present your sweetheart with an ARL gift certificate.  The devotion of a shelter pet knows no bounds.  You can purchase a gift certificate to ARL shelters in Boston, Brewster, and Dedham and help your sweetheart bring a bird, bunny, dog, or cat home to love.
  3. Sponsor an adoption.  Show your Valentine how much you appreciate that soft spot he or she has for the stray animals in the neighborhood by sponsoring the adoption fees for a shelter pet in his or her name.  An animal having a harder time finding a home may just find that special someone with the extra help.
  4. Deliver a gift donation.  Sometimes flowers and chocolates don’t convey the special message you want a Valentine’s Day present to have.  By making a gift donation to the ARL or another animal welfare organization in your Valentine’s name, you show your support for a cause about which he or she cares deeply.

“The happiest part of the work we do at the ARL is uniting shelter pets with loving human companions,” explains ARL president Mary Nee.  “Supporting these efforts through your Valentine’s Day gift truly reflects the thoughtful kindness of both the gift-giver and receiver.”

Every year, the ARL’s shelters unite over 3,000 deserving animals with families and place 850 in foster homes with dedicated ARL volunteers.  Visit arlboston.org/spreadthelove to learn more about the shelter pets available for adoption.

About the Animal Rescue League of Boston

Founded in 1899, the ARL is dedicated to rescuing domesticated animals and wildlife from suffering, cruelty, abandonment, and neglect. The ARL receives no government funding and relies solely on the generosity of supporters to help animals in need.

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Dedham Shelter News: Last Nail Trim Weekend

See Listing of Nearby Convenient Alternatives

This weekend, January 25-26, our Dedham shelter will hold its final nail trimming weekend.

The shelter originally began offering the complimentary service as part of the ARL’s commitment to supporting a healthy relationship between our adopters and their pets.  In recent months, the popularity of the service has grown to a level the staff at the shelter had not anticipated and can no longer accommodate safely or quickly for clients.

To help our clients with future needs, the Dedham staff has found many convenient local alternatives that provide nail trimming at all times of the month for a minimal fee:

  • Twickenton Groomer in Dedham – $10 for a nail trim
  • Petco in Needham and Dedham – $10 (need proof of rabies vaccine)
  • Dr. Wolf’s in Dedham – $18 (need proof of rabies vaccine)

We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your understanding!

 

ARL Winter Storm Update: Shelter Hours Today

Thanks to our dedicated staff members, we’re happy to report all of the animals in our care got plenty of attention and company during the winter storm!

The snowy scene from our Brewster shelter earlier today.

The snowy scene from our Brewster shelter earlier today.

Our Boston and Dedham adoption centers will be open for business as usual this afternoon.

Our Brewster shelter will open with a delayed start today, at 1 pm.

If you’re feeling a little tired of shoveling already, remember that nothing beats the winter blues like watching your dog run around in the fresh powder!

Read our winter play time tips for you and your dog at arlboston.org/wintertime-playtime-tips-for-you-and-your-dog

 

 

5 Winter Pet Health and Safety Tips from the ARL

Winter storm reading that will help you keep pets happy and healthy

Many of us will look forward to spending some extra time with our pet companions tonight as we watch the snow fall outside.   With the coldest weeks of winter–and likely more snowfall–still ahead, why not spend some of that time boning up on winter pet health and safety tips!

The ARL recommends making five seasonal adjustments to your daily routines to keep pets happy and healthy during cold snaps and winter storms:

  1. Winterize outdoor accommodations.  If pets must stay outdoors, ensure he or she has adequate protection against the elements.  Veterinary experts agree a winter-friendly shelter should have three enclosed sides, stand off the ground, and contain generous amounts of bedding such as clean straw or hay.
  2. Watch the thermometer.  Like other New Englanders, many of our pets are conditioned to the cold weather.  Yet even for the winter-experienced animals, bring outdoor pets indoors if the temperature drops below 20 degrees.  Puppies, kittens, and short-haired pets should come indoors when the thermometer drops below 40 degrees.
  3. Check underneath the hood.  Cats love to warm up underneath cars and car hoods, leading to burns and other grave injuries when the car gets turned on suddenly.  Make a habit to pound on the hood of the car and give a visual check underneath your vehicle before you start it to make sure no one is taking a nap or basking in the heat from the engine.
  4. Stay alert around the fire.  Just like people, when they’re cold, pets gravitate to the heat.  If you have a fire in your fire place or wood stove, or turn on the space heater, make sure to pay attention to how close your pet gets to hot surfaces and areas to avoid serious burns.
  5. Pay attention to grooming and senior pet health.  A pet with a matted coat cannot keep him or herself warm!  Long-haired pets, especially during heavy periods of shedding, need extra help maintaining a healthy coat.  Senior pets also can have more pain from arthritis in the cold, so check with your veterinarian for suggestions for keeping your pet content.

For more helpful winter pet health and safety tips, visit arlboston.org/winterweather