ARL Caring for Stowaway Kitten

Coffee” Found Under Hood of SUV During Washington D.C. to Boston Trip

The Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) is caring for a two-month-old stray kitten that is lucky to be alive after stowing away under the hood of an SUV while a couple drove from Washington D.C. to Boston.

While stopping at a Starbucks in Arlington, Virginia, Michael Waters and Aiesha Dey noticed the black kitten scurrying down the sidewalk, then underneath their SUV. After checking all around the vehicle for signs of the kitten, they thought he had moved on, and continued on their way.

Nearly 250 miles later on the outskirts of New York City, the couple heard meowing. Alarmed, they pulled over, and when they popped the hood, the kitten was found nestled between the grill and the radiator.

“It was amazing, the kitten was in front of the radiator,” Waters said. “It was scared and it took 15-20 minutes for me to pull him out, but he was friendly. He must have found the perfect spot too, because it wasn’t hot where he was and I didn’t get burned when I reached in to grab him. Once we got him in the car we settled him down and tried to give him some milk and then continued on to Boston.”

Because he was first seen outside of a Starbucks, the couple thought “Coffee” was a fitting name. How did Coffee manage to get under the hood? The SUV has a uni-body construction, so it’s likely that Coffee got into the engine compartment through the wheel-well, and thankfully was able to find a relatively safe place to stowaway.

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Coffee relaxing at ARL.

Upon arriving in Boston, Waters and Dey brought the kitten to ARL for treatment and rehabilitation. Coffee was placed into foster care following his initial exam, and the couple have since returned to Washington D.C.

Stress-Related Issues

In addition to being thin and having fleas, Coffee developed some other problems in the aftermath of his journey. Coffee is currently dealing with ear and repertory infections, due to the environment and the stress of the trip. There was also some scarring on his paws and underside. For ARL shelter veterinary staff, the circumstances in which Coffee came into ARL’s care was something they “had never seen before.”

Coffee may have spent one of his nine lives, but his rehab continues, and veterinary staff add that in a couple of weeks he should look like a completely different cat and also be ready to find a home.

 

 

UPDATE: Maybelle Gets First Measurement

Weight Loss to be Gauged by Inches Lost

When Maybelle the pot-bellied pig first came to the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) several months ago, she weighed 196 pounds and could barely stand, let alone walk; and her overgrown hooves were causing severe discomfort. While she is still grossly overweight, Maybelle is making progress.

Because she is still relatively immobile, getting Maybelle on a scale is a difficult task. So this week Dedham Animal Care & Adoption Center staff recorded her first waist measurement, and will chart Maybelle’s progress in the coming months by the number of inches she loses.

Currently Maybelle’s waist measures 48 inches– that’s 4 feet round!

While it may be difficult to physically see her weight loss, Maybelle has shed some pounds, and is able to stand and move around a little easier–a roll of fat is unfortunately still blocking her eyes so she can’t see. A secondary concern for the pot-bellied pig was her mental state. Maybelle was depressed when she came to ARL, however she seems to be turning a corner, thanks to constant visits and encouragement from ARL staff and volunteers. She has also grown a fan-base, as many people who come to the Dedham Animal Care & Adoption Center ask to see her. Overall, there’s a long road ahead, but Maybelle is certainly trending in the right direction.

ARL’s veterinary staff want Maybelle to lose weight safely–meaning it will be a slow and steady process. She is still receiving 6 small meals a day and has drastically reduced her caloric intake. Make sure to check back often to see Maybelle’s progress!

Extended Care

It’s expected that Maybelle’s weight loss and rehabilitation will take up to a year, meaning she will be in the care of ARL much longer than a typical shelter animal. From food and shelter, to on-going veterinary care, costs to take care of Maybelle will run in the thousands. ARL does not receive government funding, and relies solely on the generosity of individuals to help animals in need like Maybelle. Please donate today by clicking the icon below to help Maybelle and animals like her.

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Fourth of July Pet Safety Tips

Help Keep Your Pet Happy, Healthy, and Worry-Free

BBQ’s, beaches, fireworks and gatherings with friends and family. For humans all these things add up to a picture-perfect Fourth of July holiday. However, for your dog, the sun, crowds, and loud noises can lead to over-stimulation, fear, and a potentially harmful situation.

The Animal Rescue League of Boston wants you to enjoy the celebration of our nation, but please remember these 5 simple, but important tips to create a safe environment for your dog if they must be with you.

  1. Keep your dog away from potentially hazardous objects. Keep your pet away from BBQ’s, fireworks and even sparklers. Think about fireworks for a moment. A sudden bang, a flash of light: these are ingredients for striking fear into your beloved dog, and some animals become “fearfully aggressive” due to loud noises, so keep a close eye on them, especially around children.
  2. Leave your pup indoors in a small, quiet, and cool room. Turning a TV or radio on at low volume can distract your dog from all the outside noises. Also allow them some room to roam around, so they don’t feel too confined.
  3. If they must be outside, keep your canine in a carrier or on a leash. Set your dog up in style with shade, ample air-flow, and access to cold water.
  4. Never leave your dog alone in a parked car if they must travel with you. When the temperature rises it’s Too Hot for Spot! Remember, animals don’t sweat like humans do and can overheat easily. Even with seemingly mild outside temperatures, the inside of a car can heat up to well over 100 degrees in a matter of minutes, which can lead to deadly heat stroke. It is also illegal in Massachusetts to leave an animal in a parked car, owners can face fines or even forfeiture of the animal.
  5. Make sure your dog’s microchip and ID tag information is current. Many animal shelters report an increase of stray animals after July 4th due to the number of pets running away from the noise and excitement. Be sure your contact information is correct and up-to-date, and always on your pup’s collar to ensure an easy reunion should they become separated from you.

Play it Safe

Leaving your dog at home is always the best bet and the right decision for you and your pet. Prevention is responsible pet ownership.

 

 

 

 

City of Boston Cements Catie Copley’s Legacy

June 23 Declared “Catie Copley Day”

Since 2004, Catie Copley, a loveable black lab, served as the Fairmont Copley Plaza Hotel’s Canine Ambassador and became a Boston icon. Guests missing their own furry friend were encouraged to take her for walks, she was the subject of a children’s book and was known as a community liaison. Catie passed away in May at the age of 16, and this past week, the City of Boston ensured that her legacy will live on. The Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) participated in a special ceremony celebrating Catie’s life during which a plaque was unveiled on the hotel’s iconic exterior to honor her, and the Mayor’s office also proclaimed June 23, 2017 as “Catie Copley Day” in honor of her meaningful impact in the city of Boston.

Strong Ties to ARL

For many years, Catie’s veterinary care was provided by Boston Veterinary Care (BVC). Attached to ARL’s Chandler St. location, it’s a clinic with a mission, with proceeds benefitting ARL’s shelter animals. Because of Catie’s strong relationship with ARL, the hotel generously donated $1,000 to the organization in her memory. ARL is grateful for the Fairmont Copley’s support, and also for trusting our organization with Catie’s care over the years.

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L to R: Amanda Kennedy, Director of Animal Care and Control, City of Boston; Mary Nee, President of ARL; Joe Fallon, caretaker and Concierge, Fairmont Copley Plaza; and George Terpilowski, GM and Regional VP, Fairmont Copley Plaza.

ARL’s relationship with the Fairmont Copley Plaza continues to grow, as its current Canine Ambassador “Carly Copley” was adopted from ARL, and like Catie, is a client at BVC.

How You Can Honor Catie’s Memory

Whether you’re looking to take a vacation to Boston, maybe a staycation, or just want to head out for a cocktail, you too can honor Catie Copley’s memory. The Fairmont Copley Plaza has announced a special Remembering Catie Copley package that will be available through the end of the year. The package includes a stuffed Catie Copley doll, a copy of Catie Copley’s Great Escape, a walk with Carly Copley, and $16 will be donated to ARL per night. The OAK Long Bar+Kitchen has also debuted the “Catie’s Cooler” cocktail, and $1 from each drink sale will be donated to ARL in Catie’s name. The drink will be available through the end of July.

 

Understanding Too Hot For Spot

Heat Stroke is NO Joke and Can be Deadly

The Animal Rescue League of Boston’s (ARL) Too Hot for Spot annual campaign kicks off this month, and this week we’re focusing on heat stroke. Heat stroke is potentially fatal, which is why you should never leave your animal in a hot car as temperatures can soar to well over 100 degrees in a matter of minutes. Here’s some Q & A on heat stroke basics.

Q. What is heat stroke?

A. Heat stroke is a serious condition caused by your pet’s body overheating, usually as a result of prolonged exposure to high temperatures.

Q. What makes cats and dogs susceptible to heat stroke?

A. Pets don’t sweat the way humans do, which makes them unable to cool their bodies efficiently in the heat. If their core body temperature rises too high, they run the risk of going into shock or organ failure.

Q. Which symptoms should I look for when trying to diagnose heat stroke in my pet?

A. More obvious symptoms include: difficulty breathing, fever, dizziness, lack of coordination, profuse salivation, vomiting, a deep red or purple tongue, seizure, and unconsciousness. More subtle symptoms include: heavy panting, glazed eyes, a rapid heartbeat, excessive thirst, and lethargy.

Q. Is there anything I can do until my pet receives veterinary attention?

A. While you wait for assistance, apply cool wet towels to the groin and “underarm” areas. If your pet is alert enough, try having them slowly sip cold water.

Q. How can I protect my cat or dog from getting heat stroke altogether?

A. Prevention is always your best bet. On hot days, leave your pet at home in a cool room with an accessible bowl of cold water. If your pet must be outdoors, find a shady spot with ample air flow and limit exercise to the morning or evening hours.

Every Second Counts

If you suspect that your pet is suffering from heat stroke, seek IMMEDIATE medical attention from a veterinarian.

 

Understanding Too Hot For Spot

What you need to know to help an animal in distress

The Animal Rescue League of Boston’s (ARL) Too Hot for Spot annual campaign kicks off this month, and this week we’re focusing on the law itself, and what you need to know in order to legally help an animal in distress.

S. 2369, An Act to Prevent Animal Suffering and Death, became law in November 2016, and prohibits pet owners from confining any animal in a motor vehicle when extreme heat or cold could reasonably be expected to threaten the health of the animal. It also allows first responders and ordinary citizens to intervene, however, only by following certain protocols.

What can first responders do?

First responders – including Animal Control Officers (ACO), law enforcement officials, and firefighters – may, after making reasonable efforts to locate the motor vehicle’s owner, enter the vehicle by any reasonable means to protect the health and safety of animals.

The entry must be for the sole purpose of assisting the animal. The responders may not search the vehicle or seize items unless otherwise permitted by the law. The first responder must leave a written notice with the officer or firefighter’s name, title, and the address of the location where the animal may be retrieved.

What can regular citizens like you do?

If a citizen finds an animal in a vehicle, the citizen must make reasonable efforts to locate the vehicle’s owner.

A citizen shall not enter a vehicle to protect an animal in immediate danger unless the citizen notifies law enforcement or calls 911 and determines that the motor vehicle is locked or there is no other reasonable means for exit; does not use more force than reasonably necessary to enter the vehicle and remove the animal; and has a good faith and reasonable belief, based upon known circumstances, that entry in to the vehicle is necessary to prevent imminent danger or harm to the animal.

What else does this new law include?

This new also amends the anti-tethering statute, which means that dogs cannot be:

  • Tethered to a stationary object for longer than 5 hours in a 24-hour period
  • Tethered outside from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m., unless not for more than 15 minutes and when the owner, guardian, or keeper is present
  • Confined outside when a weather advisory, warning, or watch is issued by local, state, or federal authorities; or when environmental conditions such as extreme heat, cold, rain, snow, or hail pose as adverse risk to health or safety of the dog, based upon the dog’s breed, age, or physical condition and unless tethered for less than 15 minutes.

Being Held Accountable

This legislation supports animal welfare so animals can find protection from cruel or abusive situations and those inflicting such behavior can be held accountable for their actions.

Officers, including law enforcement officers from ARL and MSPCA, have the authority to write warnings and citations for violations, with fines ranging from $50 for a first offense to $500 for subsequent offenses. Penalties may also include impoundment or loss of ownership of the animal.

Prevention is Responsible Pet Ownership

When the temperature rises, prevention is always your best bet. Whenever possible, leave your pet at home in a low humidity and temperature-controlled room. If your pet is outdoors, find a nice, shady spot, and keep a bowl of cold water accessible at all times. Remember, your animal depends on you, so it’s up to you to keep them safe, happy, and healthy.

 

 

When the Temperature Rises — It’s TOO HOT FOR SPOT

ARL Wants Your Pet to be Safe and Comfortable All Summer Long

In typical New England fashion, this week spring suddenly turned into summer, with heat, humidity and near record-setting temperatures forecasted. As part of the Animal Rescue League of Boston’s (ARL) annual safety campaign, “Too Hot for Spot”, ARL wants to remind pet owners about the dangers of leaving an animal in a hot car.

As temperatures rise, so do concerns about animal safety. Even with temperatures below 80 degrees, the threat for heat stroke still exists. Remember, pets don’t sweat like humans do, making them unable to cool their bodies efficiently in the heat.

Keep your pet safe and healthy by following these important guidelines:

  •      Prevention is always your best bet. Whenever possible, leave your pet at home in a low humidity and temperature-controlled room.
  •      If your pet must be outdoors, find a shady spot with ample air flow to prevent overheating.
  •      Hydration. This is key, so keep a bowl of cold water accessible at all times.
  •      Exercise wisely. Limit exercise to the morning or evening hours when temperatures are at their coolest.
  •      Never leave your pet alone in a parked car. When the outside temperature is just 80 degrees, inside a parked car, the temperature can rise to more than 100 degrees in a matter of minutes, leaving your pet susceptible to deadly heat stroke. It’s also illegal in Massachusetts, thanks to the passage of S. 2369.

Prevention is Responsible Pet Ownership

By following these simple guidelines, you can help your pet limit the possibility for any heat-related health issues. However, if you notice excessive panting, weakness, rapid breathing or balance issues, and suspect a heat-related problem, bring your pet to a veterinarian immediately.

 

ARL Rehabbing Morbidly Obese Potbellied Pig

Maybelle Allegedly Fed Dog Food, But Now is Eating Her Vegetables

When one-year-old Maybelle came to the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) about six weeks ago, she was more than just a robust 196 pounds. She was also immobile, being able to stand on her legs for mere seconds at a time and suffered from several pressure sores attributed to her lack of movement. Her hooves were also overgrown and causing discomfort. Because of her size, Maybelle also couldn’t see because a roll of fat was, and still is, covering her eyes.

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Maybelle in her stall at ARL’s Dedham Animal Care & Adoption Center.

ARL’s veterinary staff jumped in with both feet to formulate a plan to get Maybelle back to being a fully-functional animal.

“It was a collaboration and it took some research,” said ARL Veterinarian, Dr. Kate Gollon. “She needs to lose about 80 pounds and regain her strength, so once we had all the information, we decided to take a number of steps to begin moving Maybelle in the right direction.”

Because Maybelle was allegedly fed only dog food in her previous situation, the first step was to drastically decrease her caloric intake. ARL is now giving her six small meals a day, consisting of feed and vegetables, and already Maybelle has lost some weight and is improving her mobility daily.

Additionally, Maybelle has had her hooves trimmed, and is receiving plenty of attention and love.

“Enrichment has been so important and the staff has been great,” Dr. Gollon said. “The staff are sitting with her, comforting her, and she enjoys petting and being scratched, it’s made a tremendous difference.”

Along with receiving plenty of love from staff and volunteers, Maybelle has also garnered public support, as her story has been publicized nationally in the media. While trending in the right direction, Maybelle’s rehab is going to be a lengthy, and costly process. It’s estimated that it will take 9-12 months for the potbellied pig to return to a normal weight, and the goal for this summer is to have Maybelle hopefully be able to get outside and have to opportunity to act like a pig, which will aide in her weight loss.

No Scale — No Problem!

Maybelle is making progress, but because of her size and immobility, ARL is unable to get her on a scale to monitor her weight loss. However, staff will be using a fabric tape measure to track her weight loss in inches, so make sure you check back often for updates!

Overfeeding is an Act of Cruelty

Maybelle’s situation has been deemed an act of cruelty, and police in Billerica have charged Maybelle’s former owner with animal cruelty. A court hearing is scheduled for mid-August.

“It’s not healthy,” said Darleen Wood, ARL’s Associate Director of Law Enforcement. “It’s cruel for an animal to be malnourished, but it’s also cruel to overfeed an animal to the point of morbid obesity.”

 

 

 

 

 

Update on Westport Farm Animal Cruelty Case

UPDATE: Arraignments Begin for 27 Individuals in New England’s Largest Animal Cruelty Case

In late March, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey announced indictments against 27 people facing a collective 151 counts of animal cruelty, stemming from the horrific discovery of 1,400 animals living in squalid conditions on a 70-acre tenant farm in Westport, Mass. in July 2016. The Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) was at the forefront of this unfathomable incident. This week arraignments got underway at Fall River Superior Court.

On Wednesday, property owner Richard Medeiros, who’s facing 21 counts of animal cruelty, was arraigned, and according to published reports “absolutely denies” each and every count against him.

Medeiros’ attorney stated that her client allegedly offered to help law enforcement when the investigation began last summer, but received no reply, and added that she believes that the 83-year-old will be cleared of all charges.

Every defendant who has appeared thus far has pleaded not guilty.

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ARL team on site rescuing animals in Westport, July 2016.

The Westport incident unfolded in July 2016, when local law enforcement, aided by ARL’s Law Enforcement Services, discovered 1,400 animals living in unimaginable conditions.

“This situation is unparalleled to anything I’ve seen in my 37 years as an animal law enforcement officer,” ARL Investigator Lt. Alan Borgal said at the time. “The sheer number of animals in dire need of care, and the cruel and unsanitary conditions we found were deplorable. It took an all-out effort of state and local officials along with multiple humane organizations to get all those animals out of that horrible situation.”

ARL confiscated and cared for 124 animals from Westport, who desperately needed treatment for a variety of health and behavioral issues — nearly all of these animals have been rehabilitated and are living in new homes.

 

Double Your Impact: Matching Gift Challenge

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Donate now through June 15 and have your gift matched dollar for dollar!

A special group of generous donors will match your donation to the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) dollar for dollar, up to $50,000, today through June 15.

These donors, who share your compassion for animals, were inspired to create a matching gift opportunity to honor the memory of Stitch, a young dog who was rescued too late to save. Your gift will be doubled to provide safety, shelter, and veterinary care so that more animals can get the second chance that Stitch did not.

Your generosity will make stories like Phil’s possible… Phil Post Pic

(Above) Phil, a Maltese-type dog, was found abandoned inside a crate along the side of a busy road in Hingham, MA. Though he was left with a blanket, toys, and food, he was also left shivering in near-freezing temperatures. Fortunately he was found in time and brought to ARL where he received immediate care.

Our shelter veterinarians determined Phil to be about two years old and, despite his harrowing ordeal, in good health. While skittish upon intake, the friendly pup was quick to warm up, showing off his energetic personality to ARL staff and volunteers.

Much to our delight, Phil quickly found a new loving home. We don’t know why Phil was abandoned. We do know that because of you, Phil was saved and received the care he desperately needed.

There are so many animals like Phil who need your help now. Last year over 6,400 rescued, abandoned, and surrendered animals came through our doors and we need you to help the thousands that will come to us this year.

Your gift today has twice the power to change the lives of animals most in need in Massachusetts. This means you can support twice as many emergency rescues, twice as many anti-cruelty investigations, and twice as many adoptions.

Please make the most out of this tremendous opportunity to double your impact for animals!

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THANK YOU for expressing your kindness and compassion for animals through your gift to the Animal Rescue League of Boston!

VERY SPECIAL THANKS to our Matching Gift Challenge Sponsors; Joan Bendery, Rosemarie & Charlie Boucher, David Fike, The Ellen B. Gray Memorial Fund, Molli Krauz, Charley & Kenneth Levine, Robert & Kathy Mahoney, Tara & Christophe Oliver, Cassie Ryan, and Marilyn Wales.