Happy National Puppy Day!

ARL Partners with Organization to Give Southern Puppies a New Life

Today marks the 11th anniversary of National Puppy Day, a day to celebrate all the cuteness, cuddliness, love and energy that a puppy can bring to your household. It’s also a reminder that there are countless puppies nationwide who need to find loving homes.

The Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) is currently partnering with Animal Rescue Front, a group dedicated to alleviating the severe pet overpopulation issue along the Gulf Coast, particularly in Mississippi; less than half of dogs in Mississippi are spayed or neutered. The organization was formed in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, and transports puppies to organizations like ARL throughout the country.

“The southern parts of the country have a significantly higher population of stray dogs with minimal spay and neuter programs that result in a high volume of homeless puppies,” said Caitlin Tomlinson, ARL’s Associate Director of Shelter Operations. “The New England communities, on the other hand, do not have the same concerns; spay and neuter programs are more popular and stray dogs are brought into shelters and municipal facilities quickly.”

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Puppies — What’s not to love?

Twice a month ARL receives puppy transports from Animal Rescue Front, so if you are looking for a puppy or any companion animal, be sure to check ARL’s adoption page often! Puppy transports are truly a life-saving measure, as this year alone, ARL expects to take in more than 350 puppies from the south.

“Since there is a lower influx of dogs in the northern part of the country, shelters can help save lives by transporting puppies and adult dogs from these Southern shelters,” Tomlinson said. “By pulling dogs out of the Southern shelters it frees up space for more dogs to be cared for without having to resort to euthanasia. Since there are not many puppies entering shelters in the northern part of the country, puppies brought from the south are in high demand and adopted very quickly.”

Saving Lives

ARL is committed to helping animals in need, and remember that when you adopt you save not one but two lives – the animal you adopt and the animal that can take its place. Whether it’s a puppy, an adult dog, cat or goat, ARL’s staff and volunteers at its Boston, Dedham and Brewster shelters are there to answer your questions to ensure that the life you save is the right animal for you and your family.

 

 

Boston Globe Subscribers – YOU Can Help ARL!

ARL Currently in Globe GRANT Top 5

The Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) would like to thank everyone who has submitted Boston Globe GRANT vouchers on behalf of ARL, and for subscribers who haven’t done so, there’s still plenty of time!

The GRANT allows Globe subscribers to show their support for non-profits by choosing which organizations get free advertising space in The Boston Globe. In February, subscribers began receiving their silver envelopes in the mail, and have until April 30 to either return the voucher, or submit their GRANT dollars online.

Submitting your GRANT voucher is an easy way to help animals like Hershey find their forever home!

Submitting your GRANT voucher is an easy way to help animals like Hershey find their forever home!

UPDATE 3/22/17: In the past 24 hours, ARL has jumped four spots to 5th place overall out of more than 2,100 non-profit organizations in New England. It’s a great boost, but we need the continued support to jump into the top spot!

View the Leaderboard

ARL receives no government funding and relies solely on the generosity of others to fulfill its mission. Free ad space in The Boston Globe would allow ARL to reach even more people about the mission, values, programs and services that make ARL an unwavering champion for animals in need.

If you haven’t sent in your voucher, you have until April 30 to do so, and please remember to write in the “Animal Rescue League of Boston” as your non-profit choice.

 

 

 

 

Register Today! Take Action for Animals on Humane Lobby Day 2017

ARL Participating in Massachusetts Lobby Day for Animals on May 9

Want to show support for improving animal welfare in the Commonwealth – and meet other animal advocates just like you?

There is strength in numbers, so join the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) and other local and national animal welfare organizations for Humane Lobby Day 2017 on Tuesday, May 9, 2017 at the Massachusetts State House!

Every spring, hundreds of supporters across the Commonwealth gather at the State House to ask their legislators to push for stronger animal-protection laws. On Humane Lobby Day, citizen animal advocates like you are invited to learn and practice lobbying for relevant animal welfare bills in the Massachusetts State Legislature.

humane lobby day 2016

Humane Lobby Day 2016

ARL will focus on informing legislators about how they can help increase awareness about important animal welfare, safety, and health issues among their constituents.

EVENT DETAILS

Tuesday, May 9, 2017 10:30 A.M. to 4:00 P.M. The Great Hall at the Massachusetts State House 24 Beacon Street, Boston, MA 02108

Attendance Fee: Please note that there is a $9 fee per attendee, which offsets the cost of lunch and materials. A formal speaking program, catered lunch, and special awards ceremony recognizing legislators for their work to help animals are also on the day’s agenda.

Registration will begin at 10:15 a.m., followed by remarks given by distinguished guests, and awards will also be handed out to certain legislators and staff for all their hard work for animal protection.

Click Here to register and get involved.

Please note: Registration for Humane Lobby Day will close on Thursday, May 4, at 6 p.m. so register today!

 

 

 

Dedham Rabies and Microchip Clinic Returns

ARL Dedham to Offer Discounted Rabies Vaccines and Microchips

Historically an annual event, the Animal Rescue League of Boston’s (ARL) rabies and microchip clinic in Dedham missed 2016 due to construction. However with the state-of-the-art shelter facility completed, the clinic is ready to get back on track! From 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, April 8, ARL in Dedham will offer the following discounted services:

Microchips $20

($15 for senior citizens)

Rabies Vaccine $10

($7 for senior citizens)

Pet owners should bring the certificate from the animals’ last vaccination. If they are within the date range (before the vaccination expires), ARL can give the animal a 3-year vaccine, but without proper documentation, it will only be a 1-year vaccine. Why have these services done? Rabies vaccines are mandated by law for all dogs and cats, and having a microchip implanted greatly increases the odds of your furry friend returning home if he/she decides to wander off and is taken in by a local shelter or Animal Control Officer.

Walk-ins welcome, and for more information, call the Dedham shelter at 781-326-0729 or email at dedham@arlboston.org.

 

ARL Launches “Healthy Animals–Healthy Communities” Initiative

Signs first partnership agreement with Codman Square Academy Public School

We are incredibly grateful to the Cummings Foundation for selecting the ARL as a recipient of their “$100K for 100”grant! This grant affords ARL with the resources to launch an exciting multi-year partnership with the Dorchester, MA community to improve the health of the animals and the people who live within it. 

The Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) is pleased to formally launch the “Healthy Animals— Healthy Communities” initiative and announce its first partnership project with The Codman Academy Charter Public School (CSAPS).

The Health Animals–Healthy Communities initiative, focused on the Codman Square Dorchester community, has three components:

  • Create partnerships with community-based organizations to understand and support the link between the health of animals and people;
  • Identify the need for community-based animal care services, and,
  • Offer community-based education in topics such as, responsible animal ownership, animal care, and civic action (reporting incidents of animal abuse or neglect).

“The Animal Rescue League of Boston is thrilled to announce this initiative and the important partnership with Codman Square Academy,” said Mary Nee, ARL President and Dorchester resident. “The Healthy Animals, Healthy Communities initiative will connect the work of ARL for animals with strong Codman Square community institutions for the benefit of animals and people.”

By establishing key partnerships with education and human service institutions in the Codman Square, the goal of the Health Animals–Healthy Communities is to establish a connections between human and animal services that benefits the community and integrates animal needs into the work of local agencies.

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ARL and Codman Academy staff mark the partnership agreement between the two organizations. From L to R: Cheryl Traversi, ARL Associate Director of Community Services; Greg Carlson, CACPS Director of Instruction and Academic Enrichment; Thabiti Brown, CACPS Headmaster; Genya Mazor-Thomas, ARL Community Initiative Coordinator; Mary Nee, ARL President.

Through this partnership with CSAPS, a 10-week course “More than Just Pets: Animals in the Community,” will be offered at the school throughout the winter/spring of 2017. During this enrichment class, students will explore the depths of the human-animal bond and why companion animals play such a vital role in our overall mental, social, and physical wellness. Students will also interact with a variety of animals, and study animal behavior, welfare, and care.

“Animals are a part of our community and the way we interact with animals can be an example of how we treat one another,” said Thabiti Brown, Headmaster for Codman Academy. “We’re teaching students that they can make a difference in building a stronger community by helping an animal or person in need, and that’s a beautiful thing.”

Additionally, “Healthy Animals–Healthy Communities” will broaden its reach within the Codman Square community through “Let’s Talk Pets” public workshops, focusing on basic animal care and contributing to the Dorchester Sports League’s FitKitchen: Pet Edition, in which residents are taught how to prepare healthy meals for their family and their pets. ARL will also be conducting neighborhood surveys to help determine residents’ pet ownership needs. Additional partnerships with Codman Square organizations are being planned to make a greater overall impact.

The “Health Animals–Healthy Communities” initiative was made possible by a grant from the Cummings Foundation. ARL is one of 100 local nonprofits to receive grants of $100,000 through Cummings Foundation’s “$100K for 100” program.

“We admire and very much appreciate the important work that nonprofit organizations like The Animal Rescue League of Boston are doing in the local communities where our colleagues and clients live and work,” said Joel Swets, Cummings Foundation’s executive director. “We are delighted to support their efforts.”

 

Mass Animal Fund Voucher Program Fueling ARL’s Spay/Neuter Clinic

Funding Provided Through Line 33F Campaign

It’s the height of tax season, and Massachusetts residents once again have the opportunity to donate to the Massachusetts Animal Fund (MAF); an organization dedicated to eradicating animal homelessness through spay and neuter programs. This week the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) and MAF officials gathered at ARL’s Dedham Shelter to discuss the importance of expanding this highly successful program.

“Right now there are 256 municipalities and about 30 veterinarians participating in the program statewide,” said Lauren Gilfeather, Coordinator for MAF. “It’s a safety net for people who are enrolled in state-funded assistance programs, and who may not be able to afford to have their pet spayed or neutered.”

Animal Rescue League of Boston and Mass Animal Fund staff gather at ARL's Dedham shelter.

Animal Rescue League of Boston and Mass Animal Fund staff gather at ARL’s Dedham shelter.

The MAF was created in 2012, is administered by the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources, and funded through the voluntary tax check-off (Line 33f) on the Massachusetts resident income tax form as well as monetary donations. With current funding levels, MAF can provide vouchers for about 1,100 surgeries annually. However, with just a minimal donation amount, that number could increase dramatically.

“If every Massachusetts taxpayer donated just $1, we could help up to 40,000 animals a year,” Gilfeather said.

Local animal control officers may request vouchers for dogs and cats held in their respective municipal shelters, or on behalf of low-income residents or feral trappers who request them. Since the first vouchers were disseminated in July 2014, more than 7,500 surgeries have been performed state-wide, nearly 800 by ARL alone.

“The Animal Rescue League of Boston was one of the first providers to sign on and through the Spay Waggin’ has been able to get to areas on the South Shore where we don’t have providers,” Gilfeather said. “ARL has been always been supportive and is a big reason for the program’s success.”

Two kittens await surgery during ARL Community Surgical Clinic in Dedham.

Two kittens await surgery during ARL Community Surgical Clinic in Dedham.

In conjunction with MAF, ARL is currently operating a Community Surgical Clinic at its Dedham location every Friday. The clinic offers low-cost spay and neuter services for pet owners who have received an MAF voucher from their local animal control officer and area animal shelters that need assistance for animals in their care. In addition, the clinic will soon be able to offer other services as well, including dental procedures. Appointments can be made online, and you MUST have an MAF voucher to receive services.

“The Dedham Community Surgical Clinic will provide much needed surgery space for clients with MAF vouchers that are not able to schedule elsewhere for their pet’s surgery,” said Cheryl Traversi, ARL Associate Director of Community Services. “By operating this clinic, ARL is ensuring that we are providing even more spay and neuter surgeries to the pets and pet owners in the greatest need.”

Your Donations Matter

Homeless Animal Prevention and Care is one of six causes listed on Line 33 of the Massachusetts resident income tax form, and taxpayers can contribute any amount they choose. ARL encourages any Massachusetts taxpayer who has a compassion for helping animals in need to contribute to the cause, and help us ensure that animals are safe and healthy living in communities and out of shelters.

 

Abandoned Hingham Dog Finds Forever Home

Phil Set to Begin New Life

The maltese-type dog that was found abandoned and shivering inside a crate along the side of Downer Avenue in Hingham several weeks ago has found his forever home. Renamed Phil by shelter staff, he was adopted on Thursday at the Animal Rescue League of Boston’s (ARL) Chandler Street shelter.

Phil became a media sensation when he was found, as both the ARL and the Hingham Police Department received thousands of inquiries from animal lovers throughout the state and the nation as well. During his initial intake exam, ARL shelter veterinarians determined Phil to be about two-years-old and, despite his harrowing ordeal, was in excellent overall health.

Like every animal available for adoption at ARL, Phil was neutered, microchipped, fully vaccinated, and evaluated through the organization’s shelter behavior and enrichment program.  Because of his shaggy appearance he was also groomed. While skittish upon intake, the friendly pup was quick to warm up, showing off his energetic personality to ARL staff and volunteers. Phil Post PicThe Animal Rescue League of Boston’s Law Enforcement Services had been assisting Hingham Police in its investigation to discover who left Phil on the side of the road, as under Massachusetts law, abandoning an animal is a felony offense. Because there were no credible witnesses and Phil was not microchipped, all leads have been exhausted and the person(s) responsible have not been found.

The ARL wants to remind the public that if they are no longer able to care for an animal, they can be surrendered to organizations like ARL, or a local shelter, or even a local police or fire department. There are resources available, and abandoning an animal is NEVER an option.

 

ARL Gives Stray with Eye Condition a Second Chance at Life

Meet Zim: From a Rescue, to Patient, to Adopted!

Zim, an 11-month-old tabby classic, came to the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) after being trapped for more than two days nearly 50 feet off the ground in a tree in Brockton, MA. Responding to calls from surrounding neighbors, ARL’s Rescue Services was able to scale the tree and save the scared and vocal stray.

“He was certainly happy to be out of that tree,” said Mike Brammer, ARL’s Assistant Manager of Rescue Services. “Almost immediately you could tell that he’d been around people and was very friendly.”

Zim’s beautiful markings and sweet demeanor garnered instant attention, but so did a congenital defect called Eyelid Agenesis that was discovered during his intake exam. It’s a condition where part of the eyelid doesn’t form properly, causing fur to rub up against the cornea, resulting in chronic irritation. For Zim, both eyes were affected, increasing the concern.

“If the condition is left untreated, this chronic irritation can permanently damage the cornea and cause vision impairment,” said Dr. Erin Doyle, ARL’s Lead Veterinarian for Shelter Veterinary Services. “This chronic irritation also causes significant discomfort.”

The only way to truly fix the condition is with a skin graft; however the surgery is complicated and requires extensive post-operative care. While Zim’s condition affected both eyes, it wasn’t extremely severe, making cryosurgery an option. Zim had the procedure done by an ophthalmologist at a partner organization less than a week after being rescued out of the tree in Brockton.

“Cryosurgery does not fix the eyelid, but is used to freeze the hair follicles of the fur that is rubbing on the cornea,” Dr. Doyle said. “As such, the cryosurgery removes the chronic irritation caused by the fur and restores comfort to the eyes.”

Zim recovers from cryosurgery wearing a protective cone.

Zim recovers from cryosurgery wearing a protective cone.

ROAD TO RECOVERY

With the surgery complete, Zim settled in for a few days to recover. Despite undergoing the procedure and being placed in a protective cone, he continued to showcase his personality, purring almost immediately for all the shelter staff and volunteers who would check on the handsome tabby.

Making an excellent recovery, ARL’s veterinary staff determined exactly one week following his surgery that Zim was ready to find his forever home. Certainly not a surprise to anyone at ARL who came in contact with Zim, just a few days after being made available, he has been adopted!

Zim is ready to go to his forever home!

Zim is ready to go to his forever home!

DOING THE WORK ONE ANIMAL AT A TIME

Zim represents the collaborative effort that is necessary to fulfill ARL’s mission of being an unwavering champion for animals in need, committed to keeping them safe and healthy in habitats and homes. No matter how they come into our shelters, all animals are treated with kindness and compassion, but we cannot do the work alone.

ARL receives no government funding, and relies solely on the generosity of individuals to support programs that help animals in need. Please lend your support so ARL can continue to give animals like Zim a second chance at life.

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Animal Rescue League of Boston Marks Bill Signing

H. 1220 Strengthens Financial Protections for Animal Care Facilities

 The Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) joined Representative Linda Dean Campbell, fellow animal welfare organizations, state and local officials, animal control officers, and the Massachusetts District Attorneys Association at MSPCA-Nevins Farm in Methuen today, to announce the signing of H. 1220 – An Act Updating the Law Relating to Posting a Security for Seized Animals in Cruelty Cases.

 H. 1220 was sponsored by Representative Campbell (D-Methuen), supported by 72 co-sponsors, and signed into law by Governor Baker on January 13. It will become effective on April 14.

“I am very optimistic about the positive impact this bill will have to expedite animal cruelty cases, promote better treatment of animals, and remove a financial and administrative burden on cities and towns,” said Representative Campbell.

Dr. Doyle speaks to crowd at Nevins Farm

Animal Cruelty cases often involve cities and towns, as well as organizations like ARL taking custody of the animal(s) affected. Some cases may take months to resolve, and the costs of caring for these animals is extensive. The update to H. 1220 now allows the prosecuting agency to request a court order for the accused to post a security bond, which can be utilized to pay for medical care, quarantine, behavioral training, food, shelter, and other care-related costs. This will hopefully expedite future cases.

“The organizations that care for and shelter the animals currently can request the court to order the accused to post a bond to cover the costs of sheltering the animal,” said Nadine Pellegrini, ARL’s Director of Advocacy. “Allowing the Attorney General and District Attorneys to also file the petition for a bond will be an addition, and hopefully, more efficient tool which will streamline the procedure during the course of the case and lead to a quicker resolution.”

Like people, the psyche and health of animals is fragile, and holding animals long-term isn’t only costly, it can be harmful. For dogs and cats these can manifest as aggression, the loss of house or litterbox training, or obsessive behaviors such as chewing and gnawing on themselves. And, medically, stress can result in a suppressed immune system, making animals susceptible to infectious diseases.

“It can be very challenging for shelters to meet the behavioral and medical needs of animals confiscated and held in cruelty cases,” stated Dr. Erin Doyle, ARl’s Lead Veterinarian. “Any measure that helps to provide resources for their care or expedites placement of these animals into stable homes will be greatly beneficial.”

As the new Legislative Session gets underway, the Animal Rescue League of Boston will continue its mission to be a champion for animals in need by collaborating with advocacy colleagues and working with law makers to further strengthen animal protection laws in Massachusetts.