Sunday, December 30, 2012

Just a reminder...

As the New Year approaches, there are already fireworks going all around my neighborhood. My dogs, specially my black lab Joey, gets super scared. It breaks my heart to see him so frantic. I wish that fireworks would be suspended all together. But I know this is unrealistic, so instead I'm going to share a few tips that I follow with my pets scared of fireworks. 

First, I always make sure that my pets all pets are wearing well-fitted collars have and ID tags, some way that serves to ID them, because these loud noises can frighten dogs so much that they run off. 

I always bring my dogs inside on days that I know there'll be fireworks, like New Years or Fourth of July. I put them in their crates with a comfortable mattress and their favorite toys. 

Joey loves music, so I put some music on for them and shut the windows to drown out the noises outside. I dim the lights a bit or put a blanket over their crate (not completely covering it so they can still see their surroundings). I make sure they're in a comfortable environment.

Lastly, I don't reinforce their fear. Instead of making these fireworks noises feel like a big scary deal, I don't make a big fuss about it or coddle them. Instead I play with them like it's a regular day and keep them distracted. Animals, like dogs, can feel our emotions and will imitate them; if one is anxious our dog can also get anxious. So it's important for us to stay in control and calm. 

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Only losers let Winners die

Humans are supposed to be intelligent species, but the longer I live, the more convinced I am that we can be quite the opposite. How is it not common sense that polar bears live in the cold?!!

Winner, a 14 year old polar bear housed in the Buenos Aires City Zoo has died. The reason? It’s hot!

Argentina, where it is now summer, has an average December to January temperature of 77-88 degrees Fahrenheit (but it can increase to as high as 113 degrees); since a polar bear “can overheat inprolonged exposure to temperatures above 50 degrees (Fahrenheit),” how is this not a factor that these supposed animal “experts” took into account when housing a polar bear in their zoo?

A press realease from the zoo apeared in The Buenos Aires Herald stating the following:

“With deep sadness we announce that early yesterday morning our polar bear died.

"He was beloved by the entire staff of the Buenos Aires City zoo.

"The cause of death following a necropsy was established as hyperthemia, which is influenced by the environment and by the bear’s own temperament.

"Unfortunately, as a consequence of the unusually high temperatures, along with fireworks from December 24th and the bear’s nervious temperament caused the bear’s death.”

Winner, who died on December 25th, isn't the only polar bear in captivity. His death reminds us that animals shouldn't be taken from their habitat. God made them free and part of our creation. It's not natural for them to be kept in small cages, rooms or contained. It is incredibly sad to see these losses that can so easily be prevented by letting the animals be. Animals are not meant for our entertainment. That's why my money will never go to a zoo, a circus or any other organization that exploits animals in such a way and I urge you, reader, to do the same...
Photo Courtesy of the Buenos Aires Herald

Monday, August 27, 2012

Easy Steps To Help

The reason that I started this blog was, obviously because I care about animals and our planet/nature, but also because I want to spread awareness to the regular Joes: Often times I have heard people tell me that they love animals and nature, but feel like it’s an uphill battle, like no matter what one does, animal cruelty and mistreatment of nature will never be ceased. Others tell me that they simply do not have the time or energy (after full time jobs, college classes, or raising a family) to be as involved as they would like to be.
            To be an activist, one doesn’t need to put in 40 hours a week or go around throwing red paint to celebrities dressed in fur coats (if that’s what you do, more power to you!), it only takes simple acts, that when added up make a big difference.
            There are many tips that I can give those who want to help in simple steps; for example, when adding a pet to the family, adopt from the local shelter as opposed to buying from a pet shop or breeders. This is a way to combat the overpopulation of strays in the country.
            If you are part of a local organization, like church or volunteer groups, take one day a month to raise funds for your local animal shelter. Some ways of doing this could be through selling raffle tickets, having bake sales, or car washes. Parents can even make this a family project and foster love of animals in their kids at a young age.
            Shelters often run low on supplies, so donating your old towels, blankets and sheets for the animals is useful. Here is an example of Miami-Dade’s Animal Services wish list. Search online or call your local shelter for their suggestions.
            Donating to local shelters and organizations like ASPCA, PETA, the Humane Society and others that fight animal cruelty is an important way of combating animal abuse and takes less than five minutes.
            Lastly, sometimes the best way to help is to simply not get involved. This might seem contradictory, but if you cannot take care of an animal or are not willing to keep them for the long run (that means, past the adorable puppy and kitty stages), do NOT get one. Before getting an animal check whether you can pay for his dietary, medical and living expenses.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Animals are our friends

As a child I always heard the statement that "animals are our friends." Perhaps this was why I always believed that they should be treated with love and care, since that's the way that I treat my friends and hope that my friends treat me. This is a particularly important creed that reemerged in my head after watching an episode of Animal Cops Miami on Animal Planet. While a humane law enforcement agent was rescuing a dog which had been abandoned, tied to a trailer and without any food or water, she noticed that some neighborhood children were watching her work. It was at that moment that she took the opportunity to speak to the children against animal abuse. The children seemed receptive to the agent's advice. It was then that I thought of my childhood, surrounded by my grandparents' many goats, chickens, cats, rabbits, dogs and birds. My education of being "good" to animals started very early in life and it was something that always stuck with me.  Education is vital, not just in the scholarly sense, but also in the social sense. I think that there would be less animal abuse/negligence if the concepts of animal being our friends and animals being living creatures, who feel as we do, were instilled from very early in life.