Cat Saved Just Before The Storm

dorchestercatintreeA stray cat was found stuck in a tree in Dorchester yesterday and with the impending winter storm our Rescue Team knew that they had to work fast to get the cat to safety! Working swiftly, Danielle, one of our Senior Rescue Technicians, got up to the cat’s level and was able to entice him with some cat food. After some coaxing she was able to extract the stray cat from the tree without incident and the cat is now warm and cozy at our headquarters in Boston’s South End. The video below shows the “TAIL” end of the rescue. Brian O’Connor, manager of Animal Rescue Services, says “the ride down is the fun part for us, especially when you’ve just rescued an animal in need of our help.” Though the cat wasn’t thrilled with being put in a carrier, he is doing fine now thanks to our talented Rescue Team!

Marathon Team Fundraiser A Success!

Thank you to everyone who attended Friday’s Boston Marathon Fundraiser at the Granary Tavern in Boston. The event was a huge success and over 200 people stopped by to show their support. Our Boston Marathon team has collectively raised over $30,000 and runners are still collecting donations. Remember that the money that the team raises goes towards helping shelter animals.

To support this year’s four runners and view their progress, please visit their fundraising page. You can donate online to the entire team or a specific runner.

Participate and Help Us Win the ASPCA Challenge!

The Animal Rescue League of Boston is participating in the ASPCA 100k Challenge this year and today we’re launching our community engagement campaign! We know that together we can win this! Winning the ASPCA challenge would mean $100,000 that would go to our spay/neuter program, rescue operations and saving the lives of animals. Engaging our League community members is key to saving more lives and winning. Will you help us win? By sharing our Facebook posts that have the hashtag #100kChallenge and #100kSaved you are helping our odds of winning the ASPCA Challenge, so from now until August 31 please share and like our Facebook posts and tweets more than you ever have before! We appreciate your support and stay tuned for more about the ASCPA Challenge and what the League is doing to help save more animals!

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Shelter Dog Gets Hollywood Treatment

ThumbnailOn Saturday night one of our Animal Rescue League of Boston shelter dogs had a fairy tale evening. Wren, a 5-month-old pup, spent Saturday evening at the Wilbur Theatre with actor, comedian and animal lover Janeane Garofalo. From the moment that Wren stepped foot in the theatre she was treated like a star. The Wilbur staff showered her with affection. What’s incredible is that just two weeks ago, Wren was living a life of neglect, tied to an outside porch without food or water. She was very skinny and starved for attention. Despite her hardships, Wren is a very sweet dog and felt very comfortable in the arms of Janeane Garofalo. Janeane, a pit pull dog mom herself, said that if she could, she would gladly take Wren on the train back home with her! Janeane is a huge supporter of animal welfare organizations and a friend to the Animal Rescue League of Boston. She was even so kind as to discuss the work of the League in the first 5 minutes of her show.

Wren is currently waiting for her forever home at the League’s Boston branch. If you’re interested in meeting this sweet girl you can give us a call at 617.426.9170 or stop by our Boston Adoption Center!

A special thank you to Janeane Garofalo for her kindness to Wren and the League’s staff. Also a huge thank you to the wonderful people at The Wilbur Theatre (especially Bill and Taylor Blumenreich and Andrew Mather) for always being so supportive of the Animal Rescue League of Boston. We hope to see you all again soon, stop by the shelter any time for a tour!

Sandy Needs You

SandyMeet Sandy …

She is approximately 7-years-old and is a Chow Chow mix. She has been a stray for the past year or so, and came to us in need of love and care. With some serious TLC, nutritious food and a warm and comfortable bed, Sandy has grown more confident and relaxed around us everyday. She’s a smart girl and knows “sit,” “down” and “paw.”

She would do best in a quieter home with older children, and maybe with another quiet dog. Sandy is a mellow girl who loves her squeaky toys and going for walks around the neighborhood.

Due to her extended time outside without proper care, Sandy tested positive for heartworm. We are hoping to find someone willing to foster-to-adopt until she completes her round of treatment with our veterinarians.

Do you have room in your heart and home for Sandy? Please contact us at  617-226-5602 or by email at adoption@arlboston.org.

Heidi and U-Haul Celebrate Adopt-A-Guinea Pig Month

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Heidi (L) & U-Haul (R)

March is Adopt-A-Guinea Pig Month!  Most people assume that animal shelters only have cats and dogs, but here at the Animal Rescue League of Boston we have a knowledgeable staff and are able to accommodate a variety of animals including guinea pigs! Julie Morris, ASPCA senior vice president for National Shelter Outreach, designated March as Adopt-a-Rescued-Guinea Pig celebration month. “The idea behind the celebration month is to encourage future adopters to think of shelters and rescue groups first.” Between our three branches, we currently have 6 guinea pigs available for adoption, so if you’re thinking about getting a guinea pig, why not consider adopting one from the League?

U-Haul and Heidi are 3 year old female guinea pigs who were brought to the League because their owner was moving. They have lived together since they were babies and are best friends  As you can imagine they are very attached to each other and would like to go to their forever home together. They are well socialized, very friendly and like being held and petted. Will you help Heidi and U-Haul celebrate Adopt-A-Guinea Pig Month in  new home? Share this with anyone you know who’s thinking of getting a guinea pig! If you’re interested in adopting Heidi and U-Haul, stop by our Boston Adoption Center or give us a call at 617.426.9170.

Welcoming Your Adopted Dog Into Your Home

NewDogSo you’ve adopted a new dog and he’s coming home with you this afternoon. What next? We have some advice from Donna Iovanni , CPDT Behavior Counselor at the Animal Rescue League of Boston about how to welcome your new adopted dog into your home.

Before You Bring Your Dog Home:

  • Gather Needed Supplies - Leash, Collar, ID Tag, Crate or Gates(if needed), Bed, Bowls, Food, Treats, Toys, Grooming Supplies, Waste Bags, Enzymatic Cleaner.
  • Dog-Proof your house by looking for and removing hazardous items and valuable items that the dog could chew.
  • Setup your house for the dog’s arrival. Determine where the dog’s crate, bed, and bowls will be placed. Decide where food, treats, and supplies will be stored. Determine the house rules for the dog and make sure all family members know what they are.
  • Decide what the dog’s schedule will be for walks, play, training, feeding, and potty time and who will be responsible.

The First Day:

  • Determine ahead of time where the dog will ride on the way home. It’s best to have two people if possible; one to drive and the other to pay attention to the dog. Bring towels just in case the dog gets car sick.
  • Bring the dog straight home – try not to run errands on the way.
  • No welcome-home parties. Limit/discourage visitors for the first few days so that your new dog isn’t overwhelmed.
  • When you arrive home let the dog sniff around the yard or outdoor area near your home on a leash. Bring your dog to your designated potty spot and reward the dog with a treat for going there.
  • Introduce your dog to your family members outside, one at a time. Keep it calm and low-key. Let the dog be the one to approach, sniff and drive the interaction. Offering a treat can help the dog to associate family members with good things(food!). No hugging, kissing, picking up, staring at, or patting on the top of the head during the initial introduction – these things can be scary for some dogs.
  • Stay close to home initially. No major excursions. You need to learn your new dog’s behavior before you can predict how it will respond to different stimulus. Establish a walk routine in an area you are familiar with. Structured play in the yard is also a good form of exercise, bonding, and training.
  • Bring your dog into the house on a leash and give it a tour of the house. Try keeping the mood calm and relaxed and redirect any chewing or grabbing of objects with a “leave-it” and offering an appropriate toy.
  • Bring your new dog outside often. Dogs don’t generalize as well as we do, so even though your dog may have been house trained in its previous home, your dog needs to learn your house rules, which includes a house training refresher.
  • Make sure your new dog gets ample “quiet time” so that your dog can acclimate to the new surroundings. Be observant of the dog’s responses and go at the dog’s pace.
  • If you have a resident dog(s), have the initial meeting outside (one dog at a time if you have several). Don’t rush it. Keep the leashes loose with no tension.  Make sure they meet in a food-free, toy-free zone.  Don’t leave them alone together until you are absolutely sure it is safe to do so. Watch and manage all interactions between the dogs initially. When walking the dogs a different person should walk each dog.
  • If you have a resident cat(s), keep the cat secure until you know how the dog will react to it. Use doors, gates, and leashes to prevent contact initially. Don’t give the dog the opportunity to chase the cat. Make sure the cat has escape options. Keep initial encounters brief. Manage all interactions.

Establish Daily Routines:

  • Sleeping-Initially the crate or bed should be in the room you would like the dog to sleep in eventually. The area should be safe, dog-proofed, easily cleaned, cozy and quiet, with familiar scents. Don’t put your new dog in an uninhabited area like the garage or basement.
  • Feeding-Check with your vet about what the recommended food and amounts should be for your dog based on breed, size, age, activity level, and health. If possible, feed two smaller meals per day rather than one large meal. You may need to reduce the meal size to allow for treats during training. Make sure the dogs food dish is in a safe, out of the way area.
  • Walks – Keep the walks short at first (5-10 minutes) until you get to know your new dog’s behavior and how it responds to different stimuli. Keep to relatively quiet places at first. Avoid interaction with other dogs and unfamiliar people until you and your dog are comfortable.
  • Chew Toys/Interactive Toys – Use of the crate and appropriate toys are great ways to keep your new dog out of trouble. Management of your dog and the environment prevents problem behaviors. Chew toys are a great way to direct your dog’s attention to appropriate toys, and away from objects that you don’t want your dog to destroy. Interactive toys help your dog to use its mind and tire them out, mentally. With a new dog, avoid rough and tumble, slapping, wrestling, and chase games when playing with your dog.
  • Prevent separation anxiety – Use the crate and a toy in combination with leaving for short periods and coming back several times a day, starting with your first day with your new dog. Don’t make a big fuss of coming or going.

Relationship Building:

Patience- have patience with your new dog’s behavior, level of training, and the time it takes to establish a bond with you. Give your new dog time and space to adjust. Commit time the first few days to get to know your dog’s habits and personality. Establish a routine for the dog and balance interaction and down-time. This is a period of trust-building, so don’t scare or yell at the dog or try to force close contact. Watch your dog’s postures and expressions. Learn to read him. It may take even up to several months for you to get to know your dog’s true nature. And don’t forget, your new dog is trying to do the same with you!

Training- physical and mental stimulation are necessary parts of your dog’s well-being. Training helps your dog settle into a new home, teaches your dog how to fit in to a new family, and strengthens the relationship between you and the dog. Once your dog has settled in and you are familiar with your dog’s responses, take a positive reinforcement style training class(avoid dominance-based methods!). You can sign up for humane dog training classes at the Animal Rescue League’s Boston or Dedham’s Branches.

Last: Remember to manage your dog’s environment so that you set him up to succeed. Be proactive, not reactive. In other words, prevent inappropriate behavior from happening, and then you won’t have to correct it.

Vote For Your Favorite Local Nonprofit

Thanks to YOU, the Animal Rescue League of Boston has been nominated for Best Local Nonprofit by The Phoenix. Please help us win! VOTE for us today! You’ll find our nomination in the CITY LIFE category. You’re permitted to place one vote per day, so vote now and vote often!

The League has been rescuing domesticated animals and wildlife from suffering, cruelty, abandonment, and neglect since 1899. Show your support for the work that we do, by voting today!

Spay It Forward!

BambiBlogClose-UpEvery year, the League takes in thousands of stray animals struggling to survive without adequate food, shelter or hope. In honor of World Spay Day, please join us in sharing this simple but important message: spay/neuter saves lives and prevents the needless suffering of homeless animals on our streets and in our communities.

Preventing pet overpopulation has always been core to our mission. In addition to caring for our shelter animals’ veterinary, behavioral and physical wellbeing, each pet that enters our adoption centers is spayed or neutered before being adopted into a permanent home.

In 2012, the League performed over 6,000 spay/neuter surgeries for shelter animals, through Boston Veterinary Care, our public veterinary practice, and aboard our Spay Waggin’ which provides reduced cost spay/neuter surgeries throughout the South Shore and Cape Cod. The Spay Waggin’ has performed over 31,000 surgeries since its inception in 2000.

Please make a gift to the Animal Rescue League of Boston today to help us continue to provide this vital service to pets and their owners.

Additionally, the health benefits of spay/neuter surgery will help your pet live a longer, healthier life.