Articles Tagged with: Pets
One Week Until Paws in the Park!

Kick-off the Summer with the ARL & Your Pup!

There’s just one more week until Paws in the Park! We hope you’ll join us for one of the largest pet festivals on Cape Cod. The event, which takes place on Saturday, May 31 from 11am-2pm will benefit the ARL’s Brewster shelter and promises fun for your whole family, including your pup!

The first 400 people will receive a free swag bag filled with goodies for you and your pet, so don’t forget to set your alarm!

We’d like to extend a big thank you to presenting sponsor Nauset Pet Services, who is the title sponsor for the 4th consecutive year.

$3 admission fee for adults, FREE for children 12 years and under.

Thanks to very gracious donors we have some fantastic raffle prizes for you. Tickets are $2 per raffle ticket and winners will be drawn at 1:45pm. If you have to leave early, don’t worry, you don’t need to be present to win! See what you could win below:

  • One night stay at the Seaport Hotel in Boston
  • Photo 7$100 Gift Certificate to Ark Angel Animal Hospital
  • $100 Gift Card to Addison Art Gallery
  • Two $50 Gift Cards to Arnold’s Clam Shack with mini golf passes (2 separate prizes)
  • $50 Gift Card to Laurino’s Tavern
  • $25 Gift Card to Zia Pizzeria
  • Gift Certificate to Brax Landing
  • Gift certificate for a Dolphin Fleet Whale Watch and a canvas whale tote from The Brewster Stitch
  • Dinner for two at Pisces of Chatham
  • Dinner for four at The Chatham Squire
  • Wine Lover’s Package  – Case of Joseph Carr Wines, 4 custom wine glasses from Cape Cod Glass Designs and a $25 gift card to Main Street Wine & Gourmet 
  • A Year’s Supply of Treats from Blue Dog Bakery
  • Photo Session for your dog with Cold Nose Photo
  • Framed autographed photo, used stick shaft and net from Boston Bruins player Brad Marchand
  • Gift basket from The Honest Kitchen
  • Gift basket from Lower Cape Veterinary Services
  • Gift Basket from The Cape Cod Dog
  • Small Dog Gift Basket from Agway of Cape Cod
  • Large Dog Gift Basket from Agway of Cape Cod
  • 5 Blow-n-Bubbles Self-Serve Dog Washes at Hot Diggity Dog Wash (5 winners)
  • Stroller for small dog
  • “Paws in the Park” cornhole set by Cape Cod Cornholes donated by Agway
  • ARL Emergency Backpack Kit for Dog
  • ARL Emergency Backpack Kit for Cat

Pet of the Week: Nicki, a Hound with a Big Heart

 Meet Nicki!

05-23-14 Nicki PhotoNicki is a sweet 7-year-old Bluetick hound mix who’s been waiting for a furever home for just over a month. She loves to go outside for walks and is very well-behaved on leash. She’s also very smart and will gladly give paw and play fetch.

Like all hounds, Nicki has a passion for sniffing! The moment she’s out the door, her nose is to the ground and she turns into Nicki the hound detective – investigating any scent she comes across!

She is a very friendly dog who warms up quickly, especially if you have treats!

Because Nicki doesn’t always like to share her things, she would do best in a home as the only pet with no small children.

Nicki would like nothing more than to come home with you this weekend!

Read Nicki’s online adoption profile.

If Nicki sounds like the dog for you, come meet her at our Boston shelter. Or if you know someone who’d make the perfect match,  share her  information via social media and help her find a home.

05-23-14 Nicki Paw Photo

Nicki showing her “give paw” skills.

Dog Bite-Related Fatalities: Research Challenges Conventional Wisdom

It’s National Dog Bite Prevention Week.

dr amy-marder-photoNational Dog Bite Prevention Week allows us the opportunity to share some of the impressive findings that have resulted from a study by the ARL’s Center for Shelter Dogs. Dr. Marder shares her conclusions on dog bite related fatalities.

Although very rare, fatal dog bites consistently capture media and public attention. Often the breed of the dog pre-dominates the conversation. As a result, much of public policy discussion related to the prevention of dog bites in general has focused on breed-specific legislation.

The Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), however, recently published the most comprehensive study of dog bite-related fatalities (DBRFs) ever done which directly challenges the conventional wisdom to focus on breed. The results of the study come as welcome news to organizations including the AVMA, ASPCA, Humane Society of the United States, and the ARL who have opposed breed-specific legislation.

Dr. Amy Marder, director at the ARL’s Center for Shelter Dogs (CSD), and Dr. Gary Patronek, a consultant to CSD, joined co-authors Jeffrey Sacks, lead author on earlier studies of DBRFs, and Karen Delise and Donald Cleary, both of the National Canine Research Council, in an in-depth analysis of all DBRFs known to have occurred during a ten-year period between 2000–2009.

The authors employed investigative techniques different than those used in previous dog bite or DBRF studies.

Instead of relying primarily on information contained in news accounts, researchers compiled detailed case histories from homicide detectives, animal control agencies, and case investigators. Using these sources, researchers collected information over a longer period of time, revealing more facts pertaining to each case.

Analysis revealed four or more controllable factors were present in over 80% of fatal dog bites. Very importantly, breed was not one of those factors.

Callie DogThe authors found:

• In 87% of cases, no able-bodied person was present to intervene

• In 85% of cases, the victim had no familiar relationship with the dog

• In 84% of cases, the owner failed to spay/neuter the dog

• In 77% of cases, whether because of age or physical condition, a victim had compromised ability to manage their interactions with the dog

• In 76% of cases, the owner kept a dog as a resident dog on a property, rather than as a family pet

• In 38% of cases, the owner had previously mismanaged the dog

• In 21% of cases, the owner had abused or neglected the dog

In only 45 (18%) of DBRF cases could researchers make a valid determination that the animal was a member of a distinct, recognized breed. Twenty different breeds, along with two known mixes, were identified in connection with those 45 incidents.

So what can we learn from all of this? Based on the data, the most logical conclusion is repealing breed-specific legislation. Additionally, there need to be more efforts directed at improving our collective understanding of dog behavior, as well as how dogs are cared for and managed in our communities. This will have a much greater impact on bite prevention and control.

Thank You Thursday: Community Support Leads to Dog Play Yard Renovation

K-9 Grass Coming Soon to ARL Dog Play-Yard

We’re delighted to share that the Animal Rescue League’s application for permission to install K-9 grass in the Boston play yard was unanimously approved by the South End Landmarks Commission last week.

The proposed K-9 grass represents a huge improvement over the current stone/grass/dirt surface, which will be very good for dogs and for the appearance of the space.

Our application sailed through on both its merits and with the overwhelming support expressed by our South End neighbors and Mayor Walsh’s office. We were able to submit a total of 432 signatures expressing community support for our project!

There are many people to thank for organizing our presentation and collecting signatures.

Our volunteers as always stepped up in a big way. Thank you to Astrid and Peter Rapoza, Mal Malme, Maria Uribe, Michelle S, Marna Terry and Kerry and Gus Pena.

Along with our volunteers, several local businesses collected signatures including Berkeley Perk,  Rome’s Pizza, Emelio’s Pizza, Billy’s Lunch Café and the Berkeley Barber Shop.

We’d also like to thank ARL staff, especially Bob Williams our Director of Facilities who was the champion of this project. Bob left no stone unturned from the research for finding the right surface material, to the presentation and overall coordination.

“I am very grateful for the above and beyond effort here; it will mean so much to ARL and dogs in our care,” said ARL president, Mary Nee.

Construction will start this summer! Stay tuned for details.

Dog Play Yard After

May is National Pet Month

Celebrate the Many Benefits of Having a Pet in Your Life

05-13-14 National Pet Month_Dawn & CatMay is National Pet Month, and this special reminder gives us a chance to think about all the compelling reasons to share your life with a companion animal.

Bringing a pet into your life can have lasting health benefits for both you, and the animal you have chosen to love.  Research shows that pets can lower our heart rate and blood pressure, increase our tendency to exercise, improve our overall mood, and help us manage the stress in our lives.

Pet care can teach children important lessons in responsibility, accountability, and even time management.  Registered therapy dogs can assuage feelings of loneliness in nursing home patients and help children with developmental disabilities learn to read.  The list goes on and on: pets are good for us!

05-13-14 National Pet Month_Boy & Pig

If you’re thinking about adopting a pert, we hope you’ll come by one of our shelters in Boston, Brewster or Dedham! We always have plenty of amazing animals just waiting for a human companion to call their own.

Adopting a pet from a reputable shelter will provide a needy animal with a safe, happy, and healthy home.

Ultimately, when you adopt you’re saving two lives: your new pet’s and that of the animal who takes his/her place in the shelter, and in return, if we note all of the benefits listed above, you just might be saving yours in the process!

Visit arlboston.org/search-adoptables to find your new pet!

Pets of the Week: Kingsley & Rigel Become BFFs at ARL Dedham Shelter [VIDEO]

Kingsley & Rigel’s Adoption Fees are Sponsored in Full 

Kingsley (two-years-old) and Rigel (five-years-old) were found as strays and became best friends at the ARL’s Dedham shelter. They are also both FIV positive. These two wonderful cats have grown inseparable and need to find a loving home that will take them both.

Watch their video above to learn more about these pawsome fellas and to see the beautiful bond that they’ve created.

Kingsley and Rigel’s adoption fees have been sponsored in full by very generous donors who have fallen in love with these sweet boys!

Read their profile

If Kingsley and Rigel sound like the cats for you, come meet them at our Dedham shelter. Or if you know someone who’d make the purrfect match,  share their information via social media.

Kingsley & Rigel Photo

Include Your Furry Friends in Your Emergency Plan

Honor National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day


As parts of the U.S. battle floods, tornadoes, and wild fires, the ARL encourages Massachusetts pet owners to plan ahead for a sudden evacuation.

“If you have a pet, part of your emergency planning should include how you will shelter and care for your animal,” explains Brian O’Connor, manager of rescue services at the ARL.  “Getting a pet emergency bag ready to go in case you need to evacuate due to flooding or loss of electricity during a storm or other disaster is a very important part of disaster preparedness.”

In addition to an emergency bag, the Federal Emergency Management Agency recommends:

  • Getting a sturdy and comfy crate or carrier to transport your pet
  • Finding a shelter alternative that works for both you and your pet
  • Having a picture of you and your pet together in case you get separated during an emergency

“Having a recent picture of you and your pet not only helps others assist you in finding your pet, but it also documents ownership,” says O’Connor.

Download our pet emergency packing list flyer: http://bit.ly/arlpreparedpets


Closing Thoughts on Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month From Mary Nee

Today, the last day of April, concludes Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month.

Mary & Mickey square

ARL president, Mary Nee

Bringing greater attention to the issue is, of course, central to what the ARL does all year long, yet if you asked me why should we bring greater attention to the issue of animal cruelty, I’d say the reasons go well beyond the mission of our organization.

Reason #1: Animal cruelty is a big problem.

In 2013, the ARL assisted in the investigation of 567 cases of animal cruelty—that’s more than one case a day and we’re just one of many organizations and law enforcement agencies in the state legally pursuing animal welfare issues.

When you consider that at least 80% of animal cruelty remains undiscovered, the magnitude of the problem truly sinks in.

Reason #2: Animal cruelty can indicate other illegal activity, domestic abuse, and mental illness.

Animal cruelty can take many forms.  The intentions behind deliberately inflicting injuries or failing to provide minimum care and nutrition can vary.

Sometimes an animal is physically abused or denied basic care for sport or other financial gain, as in the case of staged dog fighting.  Other times, an animal is intentionally harmed to physically or emotionally intimidate a partner or family member.  In still others, a hoarding compulsion quickly overwhelms an owner’s ability to provide basic care and nutrition to the animals living in the home or on the property.

In each situation, however, the safety and well-being of animals, people, and our communities are all potentially at risk.

Startling statistics remind us of the strong connection between animal cruelty and other forms of violence and criminal behavior.  In a Massachusetts study, for example, 70% of animal abusers had criminal records including crimes involving violence, property, drugs, or disorderly behavior (Arluke & Luke, 1997).

Reason #3: What we do to address animal cruelty reflects our tolerance for other forms of family and community violence.

Heightened awareness of how animals are cared for and treated not only helps reduce the number of tragic cases of animal suffering, but also moves us closer to a more just and humane society where both people and animals are valued.

Whether it’s violence against an animal, child, or an adult, we should all do something to stop it from happening.

Reporting suspicions of animal cruelty to local authorities plays a critical role in prevention.  As we have talked about all this month, if when you see something, please say something and call your local police. 

You will make a tremendous difference in the lives of people and animals.

– Mary Nee, President of the Animal Rescue League of Boston

Test your knowledge of animal cruelty issues by taking the ARL’s Animal Cruelty Quiz and learn more about what you can do to prevent animal cruelty at arlboston.org/take-action

How Much Do You Know About Animal Cruelty Stats?

Take Our Animal Cruelty Quiz

Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month is coming to an end. See how much you’ve learned this month. Take the ARL’s online quiz, which will test your knowledge of animal cruelty laws and links between animal cruelty and domestic violence.

At the end you’ll see how you rank against other animal welfare supporters. Help educate your friends about animal cruelty by sharing the quiz with them!

dog_quiz_picTake the quiz!

In case you need to brush-up before the quiz, check-out these helpful resources below.

7 Warning Signs of Potential Animal Cruelty

The Link Between Animal Cruelty and Violence Against People

Other Helpful resources at arlboston.org/take-action

Animal Cruelty and Human Violence: Q&A with Dr. Martha Smith-Blackmore

Today marks the end of Animal Cruelty and Human Violence Awareness week, a time to discuss the growing body of evidence demonstrating the strong connection between animal abuse and other forms of family and community violence.

Law enforcement agencies, including the International Association of Chiefs of Police have expressed concern about the relationship between animal cruelty, domestic violence, child and elder abuse, usually referred to as “The Link”.  Studies have confirmed a relationship between animal abuse and other violent crimes.

Download our fact sheet on animal cruelty and human violence.

Dr. Smith X-Ray

Dr. Martha Smith-Blackmore

We asked Dr. Martha Smith-Blackmore, vice president of animal welfare at the ARL, for her perspective on the link between animal cruelty and human violence.  Here’s what she had to say:

ARL Blog: How would you define “animal abuse?”

Dr. Smith-Blackmore: Animal abuse can include physical abuse (non-accidental injury), emotional abuse, neglect, sexual abuse and staged animal fights.

Physical abuse is characterized by the deliberate inflicting of injuries or causing pain, including inappropriate methods of training. Emotional abuse may include repeated or sustained ‘mental violence’(intimidation through loud yelling or threatening behaviors) or deliberate isolation through the  withholding social interactions.

Neglect is the failure to provide adequate levels of food, water, shelter, and veterinary care to animals. Sexual abuse includes any sexual conduct with animals, which may or may not result in physical injury to the animal.

Unfortunately, examples of all of these kinds of animal abuse have been investigated by the ARL’s Law Enforcement department.  Last year alone, our Law Enforcement team led or assisted in the investigation of 576 cruelty cases.

ARL Blog:  Most people would agree that reporting animal cruelty helps the animals involved and for that reason is importance to do.  But is there an even bigger impact reporting animal cruelty has on a community?

Dr. Smith-Blackmore: Absolutely.  Animal abuse is an important social issue affecting animals, families, and communities.

Recognizing and reporting animal abuse is especially important, due to the link between animal abuse and human violence. A correlation between animal abuse, family violence and other forms of community violence has been established.

Family and animal protection professionals have recognized this connection, noting that abuse of children, elders, domestic partners and animals result in a self-perpetuating cycle of violence.

ARL Blog:  So reporting concerns about animal cruelty can really make a difference to both animals and people?

Dr. Smith-Blackmore: Yes, when animals in a home are abused or neglected, it’s a warning sign that others in the household may not be safe. In addition, children who witness animal abuse are harmed and are also at a greater risk of becoming abusers themselves.

Laws provide animals with protection from abuse; however successful prosecution depends on reporting by witnesses to law enforcement authorities.  Protecting animals and creating safe and humane communities has to be a priority for us all.

Learn more about animal cruelty and domestic violence.

For more on this topic visit arlboston.org/take-action