fbpx
Blog Archives
Bruins Make Off-Day Visit to ARL

RW David Backes Shows Passion for Animal Welfare

As the Boston Bruins continue to prepare for a playoff run, this week several players took some time during an off-day to visit the Animal Rescue League of Boston’s (ARL) Boston shelter and showed that while tough on the ice, RW David Backes, RW Drew Stafford, Defensemen Torey Krug and Colin Miller have a soft spot when it comes to animals.

During the players’ visit which included Backes’ wife Kelly, they toured ARL’s Boston shelter, cuddled up with number of our animals looking for their forever homes, and learned more about ARL’s programs and services.

“Being relatively new to Boston, it was great meeting the animals and staff, I was very impressed with the work that’s being done (at ARL); it was wonderful learning more about the Animal Rescue League (of Boston),” said Kelly Backes.

For the Backes’, animal welfare has been a passion for more than a decade, culminating with the formation of Athletes for Animals, an organization that unites athletes for a common cause.

“As athletes we have a public platform and because animals are a passion for my wife and I, I wanted to use that platform to educate and inform as many people as possible about animal welfare,” said Backes.

With a number of rescue animals already at home, David is the go-to guy in the locker room for teammates with animal questions, and as seen with this week’s visit to ARL, he’s sharing his compassion with fellow Bruins and able to demonstrate the life-changing magic that comes with helping an animal in need.

Get Involved

You too can be a champion for animals, and you don’t have to have puck-handling skills or even be able to skate backwards to do so! From volunteering, fostering or donating (just to name a few), there are many ways to help ARL fulfill its vision to keep animals safe and healthy in the communities where they live. Click here to get involved!


Update on Westport Farm Case

UPDATE: Attorney General Announces Indictments for 27 Individuals in New England’s Largest Animal Cruelty Case

In July 2016, the Animal Rescue League of Boston’s (ARL) Law Enforcement Department, staff, volunteers, along with other humane organizations and law enforcement departments, helped remove more than 1,400 animals living in unimaginable conditions on a 70-acre property in Westport, MA.

westport

Westport, July 2016.

What followed was the largest animal cruelty investigation in New England history, and today Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey announced the indictments of 27 people facing a collective 151 counts of animal cruelty.
The indictment returned by a Statewide Grand Jury on Thursday is the result of a collaborative investigation involving ARL, Westport Police, Massachusetts Environmental Police, the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources (MDAR), and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA).
ARL Investigator Lt. Alan Borgal was one of the first on-scene at the Westport Farm.
“This situation is unparalleled to anything I’ve seen in my 37 years as an animal law enforcement officer,” Borgal said. “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.”
Property owner Richard Medieros is facing 21 counts of animal cruelty, and all but two of the defendants are facing more than one count of animal cruelty.
“Hundreds of animals on this farm were kept in deplorable and dangerous conditions, with inadequate food, water, or shelter, many of them suffering from severe health ailments that required them to be euthanized,” said AG Healey. “As a result of our investigation, the owner of this farm and its tenants will be held responsible for the inhumane treatment of these animals.”
The defendants are expected to be arraigned in Bristol Superior Court at a future date.

 

 

 


Thinking About Adopting a Puppy?

10 Things You Need to Keep in Mind Before Adopting

We at the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) love puppies. Let’s be honest who doesn’t? They’re adorable, loving and lots of fun. They’re also untrained, energetic and at times very destructive! While your heart may be in the right place, the bottom line is that puppies are not for every household. 10 Questions to ask Yourself Before Adopting a Puppy:

  1. Time Commitment: How much time do you have to devote to the puppy and are you willing to commit to the dog for its life? From training, to multiple feedings daily, to middle of the night potty trips, puppies need constant attention and cannot be left alone for long periods of time. If you cannot devote time to properly and responsibly raise the puppy, then it’s not the time to bring a puppy home.
  2. Socialization: This job is critical of a puppy owner, and is especially important in the first few months of life. Can you commit the time to socialize your puppy? Puppies need to be meet people and other dogs to become a well-adjusted and confident adult dog. Socialization is never complete in a dog, but the longer you wait the harder it gets.
  3. Housing: It’s seemingly a simple question, but is overlooked or ignored by many. Can you properly house a puppy and are you allowed to have a puppy? Renters: Check your lease to see if there are pet restrictions. Home Owners: Check your home owner’s insurance policy for restrictions. Every year thousands of dogs are returned because they were not allowed – this is not fair to the animal or to you, so please make sure that there are no issues if you bring home a puppy.
  4. Lifestyle: What is your lifestyle like? Are you an active family that spends plenty of time outdoors? Or are you more of a couch potato? Some dogs require a lot of exercise daily, and remember that small does not equal less energy. Some large breed dogs have a lower activity level than many smaller breeds.
  5. Cost: Can you afford a puppy? Food, veterinary visits, vaccinations, training, licensing and medical emergencies. Just a few of the costs to consider, and remember the costs of owning an animal need to be maintained for its entire life.
  6. Patience/Training: Are you a patient person? Puppies are of course babies and need to learn in order to become a well-adjusted adult. Remember it takes time and lots of patience! House training, crate training, obedience training, how to walk properly on a leash; these are just a few of the critical training areas. If you lack patience and get frustrated quickly, then maybe an older dog would be better for you.
  7. Long Term: What will happen to the dog if you start a family? What if you have to move? Again there are thousands that are given up every year for these reasons. Dogs are a lifetime commitment, and plans for these factors need to be made to ensure that the dog remains a part of the family for the next 10-15 years.
  8. Human Medical Issues: Are there any allergies or medical conditions in your family that could cause issues that may result in having to surrender the puppy? If there are suspected health concerns, consult a doctor before considering any pet.
  9. Grooming: All dogs need grooming – even hairless breeds! There’s brushing as well as regular attention to teeth, ears and nails. Some breeds do require professional grooming, while others may require a few minutes with a brush on a weekly basis. Are you able to handle this responsibility?
  10. Need: Finally – Why do you want a puppy? If you already have pets in the house, especially senior pets, they may not be crazy about the idea of having a rambunctious puppy running around. Along with current pets, consider other family members too and who will care the dog for its entire life, not just its formative years.

Answer “YES” to All the Above? You’re ready to adopt! All adoptable animals at ARL are spayed/neutered, receive a thorough medical exam as well as vaccinations and other treatments. Additionally, Boston Veterinary Care offers superb wellness services for your pet after adoption and it’s the clinic with a mission – All profits benefit the shelter pets under the care of ARL. And if you’re looking for training for your puppy, ARL offers that too! Click here for a complete list of classes that will help you bond with your puppy, and help them develop properly in their formative years!

Small-Fry the puppy


ARL Assists in Foxboro Deer Rescue

Deer was Found Upside-Down After Getting Trapped Between Two Fences

Animal League of Boston (ARL) Rescue Services were dispatched to Foxboro at around 9:30 a.m. Monday (3/27/17) morning to assist the town’s Animal Control Officer in freeing a deer that had become trapped between two eight-foot fences that funneled into an enclosure at 191 Mechanic Street in Foxboro.

The width between the two fences where the deer was trapped was only between five inches and a foot wide, and in its panic to get free, the deer wound up upside-down and wedged in the tight space. With the land owner’s permission, a section of the fence was removed, and with some assistance, the deer was able to roll over, stand up, and was soon walking normally. Despite being shaken up and suffering several abrasions, the deer appeared to be uninjured from the ordeal, and when ushered to the edge of the property, Foxboro Police stopped traffic so the deer could cross the street and return to the wild.

Foxboro Deer 3.27

Despite being turned upside-down when trapped, this deer avoided serious injury and returned to the wild safely.

The ARL is the only animal welfare agency in Massachusetts with a technically-trained rescue team that responds to animal-related emergencies and rescue situations. ARL Rescue Services can be contacted at (617) 426-9170.


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.”

puppy blog 276x200

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.

 


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.

Codman Group 1

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.