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This Hotel Lets Guests Foster Dogs During Their Stay, And At Least 33 Of Them Have Been Adopted Afterward

Traveling and staying at hotels can become lonely. So lonely even the TV and the mini-bar can’t numb the emptiness. But one hotel in Mississippi has found the perfect way to warm their guests’ lonesome hearts.

Home2 Suites by Hilton Biloxi North/D’Iberville has been operating a program called Fostering Hope. Running since October 2018, it brings shelter dogs from the Humane Society of South Mississippi to the hotel’s lobby and offers guests the chance to foster the adorable pets in their rooms while they’re staying at the facility. Moreover, if people really hit it off with their companions, they can adopt them on their way out.

Hotel Foster Dog`- Pic 1

This frees up space at the shelter — which takes in about 8,000 dogs a year and adopts out close to 80% of them — so more doggos can get the help they need and increases the chances for these dogs to get noticed and find their new family. And since the hotel specializes in long-term visits (many guests book a room for months at a time), it’s the perfect venue for such an initiative.

The brilliant program was the idea of Teresa Johnston, the hotel’s sales director. “We’re an extended-stay Hilton branded property. We have a lot of extended-stay guests with Keesler Air Force Base, Ingalls Shipbuilding and other supporting industries. I could see that our guests were lonely, and I wanted to fill a void for them and at the same time help our community,” she told Bored Panda.

Hotel Foster Dog - Pic 2

“People love animals and we have many guest that decide to stay at the Home2 Suites by Hilton Biloxi North/D’Iberville because of this program,” Johnston explained.

If guests wish to take home a dog from the program, all they have to do is fill out an application and pay the $50 adoption fee at the hotel.

The Humane Society of South Mississippi say the program is very open, but they do reserve the right to deny an adoption. If that’s the case, they may invite people to visit their shelter another day and find the pet that’s right for them.

So far, at least 34 guests have gone home with one of the Home 2 Suites “Fostering Hope” dogs.

“We keep doing what we’re doing, our families during the summer love the program and our servicemen and women love the program all year long,” Johnston said.

The hotel’s sales director also added that anyone can make this program happen. “It takes a property cheerleader, a strong operations team and a commitment to the local shelter to find homes for all these animals one at a time. Love what you do!”

Source: Bored Panda

Level 4 lockdown: Can you adopt an animal yet?

Potential adopters are being turned away from animal organisations who are unsure whether they can adopt animals or not.

Level 4 lockdown: Can you adopt an animal yet?

Until the government allows it, adoption of animals is not permitted.

There is much confusion among animal welfare groups as to whether adoption is permitted under Level 4 restrictions.

The Covid-19 lockdown in South Africa has affected us all. Now imagine knowing there are people out there wanting to give you a second chance but you can’t go to your new forever home? This is the life of thousands of animals in shelters across the nation.

Frustration grows as eager community members are dumbfounded as to why animal adoptions are not allowed. Societies have been inundated with adoption requests leaving many unanswered questions and irate potential adopters. These are unique circumstances as many would-be adopters have much more valuable time on their hands to integrate a new furry member to their family.

Level 4 lockdown: Can you adopt an animal yet?

Shelter animals across South Africa plead to be adopted. Photo: File

 

Under Level 4 Covid-19 restrictions it is unclear whether animal adoption is permitted. According to Lungi Mtshali from Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA), adoptions of animals is not permitted as animal adoption is not an essential service.

“If it has not been mentioned in the gazette, then it is not allowed. As you can imagine, we cannot list every action that is not allowed, the list would be too long,” said Mtshali.

Read the full gazetted document here.

Further questions have been sent to COGTA in regards to animal adoptions such as:

  • Why the adoption of animals has not been permitted?
  • When or which level will the adoption of animals be allowed?
  • If animal adoption organisations follow strict social distancing and sanitation protocols, would adoptions then be permitted?

The National Councils of SPCAs (NSPCA) sent a request to the Covid-19 Nerve Centre Committee on behalf of all SPCAs and animal welfare organisations around South Africa, asking for their permission to allow adoptions to re-open under the Level 4 restriction. To date, the NSPCA has not received a response.

The concerns surrounding adoptions are that access to the SPCAs is strictly restricted – this is for the health and safety of the staff members who are vital for their community’s animals’ welfare, as well as the moral health of society, as well as the health and safety of members of the public.

A statement by the NSPCA said, “We would like to assure the public that rehoming animals is important to the SPCA Movement, however, we are obligated to adhere to any law or regulation set out by the South African Government.

Once adoptions are permitted, NSPCA’s public relations officer Meg Wilson said, “Pre-home inspections are a legal requirement for SPCAs to undertake – these would need to be undertaken with great care, ensuring that the correct PPE is worn, that the inspector and respective home follows social distancing protocols and sanitation.”

Source: Rosebank Killarney Gazette (Caxton Local Media)

To adopt or not to adopt? Are you prepared? These are the questions!

To adopt or not

The decision to adopt a pet should never be taken lightly. Whether it’s your first, your second, or perhaps even your third pet, the questions you need to ask yourself and the preparations you should have in place remain the same. “With animal shelters open for adoptions [adoptions weren’t allowed on levels 4 and 5 of lockdown] and many people staying at home for the foreseeable future, if you’ve been thinking about adopting a pet, now is as good a time as any. However, there is a lot that needs to be considered before making the decision to adopt,” explains David Roache, Managing Director of dotsure.co.za.

Commitment – Puppies and kittens grow up to become dogs and cats, so if you’re only looking to adopt for the cute factor then stop right there. Adopting a pet is a big commitment. Cats can live up to 15 to 20 years and, depending on the breed, a dog can live an average of 10 to 15 years. So, make sure everyone involved in the care of your new pet is on board for the long haul. Puppies and kittens will take up plenty of your time, especially in the early days, so if you’re too stressed or focussed on a big project at work, then perhaps wait until you have more control over your schedule before visiting the animal shelter. It’s important to remember that a pet is for life and, in this case, not just for self-isolation.

Personality trumps cute – Love at first sight may not always apply when it comes to choosing the right pet for your family. It’s important to focus on the character traits that are going to make this adoption work. It’s the difference between a very energetic dog who’ll want to go on daily runs or one who’ll be satisfied with shorter, slower walks, as long as he can sleep on your lap while you watch TV on the couch. Figuring out first how a pet will fit into your life will help you make the smart adoption choice. Shelter staff will know many of the pets’ personality traits and will be able to assist you with your decision, especially if the pet is older and has been at the shelter for a longer period.

Training – If you’re adopting a puppy, kitten or even one of the shelter’s older pets, you’re in for some training no matter what. Whether it’s teaching your new pet which areas of the house are off-limits, getting used to a leash or where the litter box is, it will take some time, so be ready to start training from day one. Patience and perseverance are important and will lead to a loving and rewarding relationship.

Spring clean and stock up – Before any new paws touch your floor make sure you’ve hidden any loose wires, put away small items that can be easily swallowed and moved any house plants out of reach that may upset your new family member’s stomach. Make sure you’ve got toys, food and water bowls, a collar, a leash and a bed ready for when your new pet arrives. A comfortable, warm, fully stocked environment with all your new pet’s necessities will help make the transition an easy one for both of you. 

Neutering and spaying – Dogs and cats can be sterilised as early as eight weeks of age however, most pets are sterilised between four and six months. If your pet hasn’t been sterilised upon adoption, the shelter will give you the correct paperwork for sterilisation to take place when the time comes, and you’ll have to provide proof to the shelter upon completion of the procedure.

The best thing you can do for your pet’s health is to have him or her sterilised. Some of the benefits include decreased aggression and a lower risk of mammary and ovarian cancer in females.

ID tag and microchip – Make sure your newly adopted pet is kitted with an ID tag so should he ever get lost, you’ll be contacted. Microchips are the best assurance for identification, especially when it comes to cats who don’t tend to wear collars. Remember to update your contact information with the microchip company if your details change.

Pet insurance – Our lives are so stressful as it is, so why let rising vet bills become a pet hate? Pet insurance gives you peace of mind, should something happen to your pet. Pet insurance isn’t just a ‘nice to have’ but a necessity in today’s tough times.

Introducing your new pet to other furry family members – If you already have pets at home, you are going to need to pay careful attention when introducing someone new to the fold. If possible, even before bringing your new pet into the house, rather find a neutral spot to make introductions. An outdoor space with enough room for cats to roam or for dogs to be on a leash is a good option. If both your established and new pets’ body language is good and there is no sign of aggression after a significant period of sussing each other out time, then you can bring your new pet into the house. However, they will still need to acclimatise to each other, so it’s important to remember to provide each pet with their own bed, introduce toys slowly, separate your pets when you’re out and most importantly, be patient.

Someone who knows all about the importance of pet adoptions is Carren Nickloes from the Animal Anti-Cruelty League (AACL). While Nickloes explains there’s been a noticeable rise in the number of people looking to adopt, they are currently only open on an appointment basis to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19. “At the beginning of lockdown, we were inundated with stray pets, pet parents dropping their fur babies off with us as they couldn’t afford to care for them, and emergency situations. While we do not see this slowing down anytime soon, we’ve started community feeding schemes specifically for those who can’t afford to feed their pets, but who don’t want to give them up. Pets make up an important part of the family unit, and we’ll do whatever we can to keep a family together.”

Roache explains that shutting down shelter adoptions during the higher levels of lockdown had a profoundly devastating effect.  “It’s a desperate situation. We know that many animal shelters rely solely on public donations and on the money they receive from adoptions. Taking away shelters’ ability to facilitate adoptions saw many around the country take a huge knock, some even having to close their doors.”

As the well-being of all animals is top of mind for dotsure.co.za, they stepped up, with the utmost of urgency, and donated R300,000 to the AACL in April. With lockdown having gone on a lot longer than any of us expected, and shelter expenses piling up, they’ve now donated a further R150,000 with R100,000 going to AACL Johannesburg and R50,000 going to AACL Cape Town.

“This donation is huge for us and is going to dramatically assist us to continue to care for the health and welfare of animals, specifically for those in our hospitals. We encourage anyone looking to bring a little joy into their lives during these uncertain times to make an appointment with us,” adds Nickloes.

To adopt or not

Source: www.dotsure.co.za

Adopting a Pet (Part 1)

Why saving a life though adoption is a great idea!
South Africa is overflowing with unwanted dogs, cats, puppies and kittens, even rabbits, birds and other animals. It’s sad to think that most of these animals in shelters will never experience a loving home and the security of a family they deserve. 

We have a massive overpopulation crisis on our hands because people: 

  • don’t sterilise their pets 
  • actively breeds animals 
  • support breeders/pet shops/animal dealers 
  • don’t take responsibility for their pets 
  • let their animals roam the streets 

The reality is that there are just not enough homes for all the animals. Only 1 out of every 10 dogs born find a forever home and millions of animals are euthanized (put to sleep) every year. More unwanted animals end up as bait dogs/cats/rabbits for dogfighting or get passed from one owner to the other until they eventually, if “lucky” end up in a shelter instead. 

We understand that it seems easier to buy a pet, but let us share with you why buying a pet is part of the problem.  The pet industry in South Africa is not regulated and pet shops do not promote responsible pet ownership (sterilizations, home checks, etc.). They make their profits by promoting IMPULSE BUYING. These animals can also come from a questionable source.

What is Adoption? 
Many animals come in as strays found and other animals are dumped, abandoned or surrendered by their owners. If these animals are not claimed by their owners within the pound period, the shelter has two options namely, euthanize or adoption. Adoption is when you give an animal from a registered rescue organisation/shelter a second chance, as part of your family. You will pay an adoption fee and go through a process of responsible homing.

It is never just about a good home, but rather good placement for that animal! 
There are many BENEFITS to adopting. You not only save a life but will also make resources and space available for the next one to be rescued. If you can do the math, you know you will save money by adopting! Pets are good for our physical and emotional health and adopted ones for the most part are already “trained”. You also help to lighten the load of a shelter that rescues animals and make the rescuers go on for just one more day. 

Image: Rustplaas Dog Shelter

Things to consider before adopting:

  • Are you ready for a pet? 
  • Can you afford pet care in the long term? 
  • Have you researched their specific needs and can you meet these needs? 
  • Does the animal fit your family’s lifestyle?
  • If you live in a townhouse complex, written approval from the body corporate, that pets are allowed, must be obtained.   
  • Municipal By-laws must be adhered to with regards to allowed number of pets.  
  • You may never know their breed, medical history or behavioural history. 
  • You will have to pet-proof your home beforehand. 
  • Get the necessary items for your car and for travel. 
  • You will still need to buy beds, blankets, toys, leashes, deworm every 3 months, vaccinate every year, buy good food every month, this does not even include saving for an emergency!  
  • They need to be spayed/neutered and a form of identification added. 
  • Social animals should not be the only animals in the house.   
  • They might need some training and patients to build trust, more time to adjust and might not get along with all people or animals. 
  • If you think adoption fees are too expensive, then we will advise that you rather not get a pet.  If you do the math a responsible pet owner would do, then you will know that the adoption fee which includes sterilisation and more, is at least half the price you would normally pay for everything which is included and that is excluding the animal itself.  

Image by Best Behaviour now operating as Beyond Behaviour

Rescue is the best breed! We always advise you to go and meet the animals available at your local shelter.  Shelter pets are not broken, they were only failed by humans. Adopting an adult pet can even be better than a puppy. You might just fall in love with one that you never thought of. Choosing the right breed for your lifestyle is however especially important. NEVER MAKE A DECISION based only on a dog’s LOOK or SIZE or BREED etc. The energy level of that animal should fit with that of your family.

If you like a particular breed, there are many different ones up for adoption through breed-specific rescues (e.g. google “Poodle” rescue SA).   Be careful with any organisations that do not do responsible homing which should include sterilisation and a home-check.

Changing a life through adoption is priceless! ADOPT DON’T SHOP!

Next week we will look at how the process for adoption works. 

WHEN YOU KNOW BETTER, DO BETTER! 

Source: The Bulletin
Website: www.thebulletin.co.za

Looking to Adopt?
Search our Welfare Directory!

Adopting a Pet (Part 2)

What can you expect during the process of adopting a pet?
The process and policy might differ between organisations. The process usually includes an application form, meet & greet, home check, paying an adoption fee, sign an adoption contract, sterilisation and follow-up. Depending on availability for sterilisation at the Veterinarian or home check schedules, this can be completed in as little as 3 or 4 days. 

Irresponsible homing is not rescue! As there are far too many irresponsible organisations as well as scammers out there, we consider it to be a RESPONSIBLE ADOPTION only when it includes the following:

  • Organisation must be registered and have a clear adoption policy as well transparency and accountability.
  • Must have a comprehensive adoption application.
  • Must do a home check in person. 
  • Must require proof of address and copy of the adopters ID.
  • May not allow adoption for someone else as this is highly irresponsible and no reputable and responsible organisation will do this.
  • Must have an adoption contract which includes sterilisation policy and return policy.
  • Should do follow-up post adoption.
  • Meet and greet with all the family members (humans and animals) is important.
  • We believe adoption fee should include at least, the sterilisation, deworming, first vaccination , microchip and ID collar.

If it is an individual who is “re-homing” their own dogs or their friend’s, then it is not adoption and they are part of the problem by abusing the term ‘adoption’. Selling animals on Facebook goes against their community standard and should be reported to Facebook and the group admins.

Home checks:
This is one of the most important aspects when it comes to the credibility of responsible animal welfare organisations. As a prospective adopter, you do not have to be afraid of a home check!  You might learn some valuable information about being a pet owner or things to look for and so you can help educate others too! You can also build a relationship with a very knowledgeable person which can come in handy in the future. Most organisations will give you time to make the necessary, reasonable changes and still adopt.

Some home check considerations includes:

  • Access to basic needs like food, water and shelter.
  • Fences, swimming pools, neighbour’s animals and surrounding areas.
  • Inspection of the other animals in the home, their general condition as well as their behaviour toward their owners and other animals.
  • Children and their attitude towards the animals.

If an organisation doesn’t do home checks, they are only a pet shop and you are supporting one of the reasons we have a massive overpopulation crisis on our hands.  No matter what they call it!

Organisations get blamed for being too strict when it comes to adoptions. If the process is too ‘hard’ for you, the commitment to the animal for their life will be impossible for you. You must remember that we are responsible for the life of a sentient being, not just an object you buy at the shop and can return or throw away when you are not happy. It is NOT JUST ABOUT A GOOD HOME, BUT ABOUT THE RIGHT PLACEMENT for the animal considering their needs and the availability of resources to meet those needs.

One popular critique is not allowing adoptions when all the animals in the yard are not sterilised. It is a standard practice among reputable rescues to require any existing animals to be sterilised. It is counterintuitive to our mission as rescuers to allow puppies, kittens, or bunnies to be homed where there are unsterilised animals. We would not have this massive overpopulation crisis if people sterilised their pets. It is about responsible pet owners.

Remember:

  • It may take some time to gain their trust, for them to adjust (3 months at least) and they might be scared at first or for extended periods of time.
  • Even if the bond is instant, you don’t know your pet yet, so take the necessary precautions around other people, children and pets and do not introduce them to everyone at once.
  • The breed should never be blamed for any issues, it is how you handle the situation.  Get some professional help from a trainer if the issues persist.

If you have any concerns or complaints regarding animal welfare organisations please contact THE PAW COMPANY via Facebook.

WHEN YOU KNOW BETTER, DO BETTER!

Source: The Bulletin
Website: www.thebulletin.co.za

Looking to Adopt?
Search our Welfare Directory!

Adoption is the only ethical option

Adoption is the only ethical option

Image: Pixabay

What YOU should know about saving a life through ADOPTION!
South Africa is overflowing with unwanted dogs, cats, puppies, and kittens, even rabbits, birds, and other animals. It’s sad to think that most of these animals in shelters will never experience a loving home and the security of a family they deserve.  Last week we looked at why breeding animals fuels this problem, so this week we will look at how you can save a life and help decrease the burden on animal welfare organizations.

The sad reality is that although we promote adoption, we can’t adopt our way out of this crisis.  Do you know 30 homes that want to adopt?  I don’t, and that is the number of animals that easily come into one shelter per month and there are thousands of shelters. People selfishly breed and abandon animals faster than we can save them. 

We understand that it seems easier to buy a pet, but buying a pet is part of the problem. The pet industry in South Africa is not regulated and pet shops do not promote responsible pet ownership (sterilizations, home checks, etc.). They make their profits by promoting impulse buying. I am not even talking about all the “free to good home” ones on social media.

Adoption is the only ethical option

What is adoption?
Many animals come in as strays found and other animals are dumped, abandoned, or surrendered by their owners. If these animals are not claimed by their owners within the pound period, the shelter has two options namely, euthanize or adoption. Adoption is when you give an animal from a registered and responsible rescue organization/shelter a second chance, as part of your family. You will pay an adoption fee and go through a process of responsible homing.

When you adopt you change more then one life!
Here are a few of the many benefits of adopting a pet:

  • You not only save a life but will also make resources and space available for the next one to be rescued.
  • If you can do the math, you know you will save money by adopting!
  • Adopted pets for the most part are already “trained”. 
  • You also help to lighten the load of a shelter that rescues animals and make the rescuers go on for just one more day. 
  • By adopting from a reputable shelter, it also allows you to take a stand against pet stores, puppy mills, and breeders and you do your part to put a dent in the pet-for-profit trade.
  • You can also build a relationship with the shelter that can really come in handy!
  • There is no greater kindness you can offer a frightened, confused shelter pet than a place in your heart and home. Many adoptive parents can attest to the special bonds created after adoption. 

Things to consider before adopting:

  • Are you ready for a pet? 
  • Can you afford pet care in the long term? 
  • Have you researched their specific needs and can you meet these needs? 
  • Does the animal fit your family’s lifestyle? 
  • If you live in a townhouse complex, written approval from the body corporate, that pets are allowed, must be obtained.   
  • Municipal By-laws must be adhered to with regard to the allowed number of pets.  
  • You may never know their breed, medical history, or behavioural history. 
  • You will have to pet-proof your home beforehand. 
  • Get the necessary items for your car and for travel. 
  • You will still need to buy beds, blankets, toys, leashes, deworm every 3 months, vaccinate every year, and buy good food every month, this does not even include saving for an emergency!  
  • They need to be spayed/neutered and a form of identification added, which is usually included in the adoption. 
  • Social animals should not be the only animals in the house and most need to be around their own species. 
  • They might need some training and patients to build trust, more time to adjust, and might not get along with all people or animals. 
  • Choosing the right breed for your lifestyle is however especially important.
  • Never make a decision based only on a dog’s look, size, breed, etc. The energy level of that animal should fit with that of your family. 

Out-of-town adoptions:
Adopting an animal from a shelter in another town is possible. Usually, a local animal rescue or SPCA in your town will do the home check. Out-of-town adoption however will cost more, and the travel stress can be a lot for the animal. If you change your mind, you can’t expect the shelter to cover the costs. So really think this through and commit 100% before you choose this option.

What can you expect during the process of adopting a pet?
The process and policy might differ between organizations. The process usually includes an application form, meet & greet, home check, paying an adoption fee, signing an adoption contract, sterilization and follow-up. Depending on availability for sterilization at the Veterinarian or home check schedules, this can be completed in as little as 3 or 4 days. 

Irresponsible homing is not rescue! Because there are far too many irresponsible organizations (yes in our area too) as well as scammers out there, we consider it to be a responsible adoption only when it includes the following:

  • The organization must be registered and have a clear adoption policy as well as transparency and accountability.
  • Must have a comprehensive adoption application.
  • Must require proof of address and a copy of the adopter’s ID.
  • Must do a home check in person. 
  • They must not breed or support breeding in any form. These are the biggest hypocrites “in” animal welfare.
  • May not allow adoption for someone else as this is highly irresponsible and no reputable and responsible organization will do this.
  • Must have an adoption contract that includes a sterilization policy and return policy.
  • Should do follow-up post-adoption.
  • Meet and greet with all the family members (humans and animals) is important.
  • We believe the adoption fee should at least include, sterilization, deworming, treatment for ticks and fleas, first vaccination, microchip, and ID collar.

Please note – If it is an individual who is “re-homing” their dogs or their friends’, or giving animals away for free, or selling them, then it is not an adoption and they are part of the problem by abusing the term ‘adoption’ and fueling this massive overpopulation crisis. Selling animals on Facebook goes against their community standard and should be reported to Facebook and the group admins.

About adoption fees:
If you think adoption fees are too expensive, then we will advise that you rather not get a pet.  If you do the math a responsible pet owner would do, then you will know that the adoption fee which includes sterilization and more, is relatively inexpensive compared to the cost of purchasing a pet, or even compared to getting a pet for free, and that is excluding the animal itself. 

EXAMPLE – Take a medium size female dog in Secunda and surrounding areas:

WHEN YOU BUY (Excluding cost for the animal itself.)

  • Sterilization easily up to R1500
  • Microchipping R375
  • Deworming R60
  • Vaccinations R400

TOTAL: R2335

When you adopt:
If all of the above are included in our area, it is around R1250 plus the fact that you saved a life…………which is priceless! That is a R1085 difference plus you just pick up the animal with all of it done already so saving on time and petrol.

Responsible pet owners will do all of the above for their animals and more. So, when you say adoption fees are too much, I would seriously question your math skills and sense of responsibility. If you can’t afford adoption fees, then I doubt you will be able to properly care for that animal, even if your heart is in the right place!

Adoption is the only ethical option

Home checks:
This is one of the most important aspects when it comes to the credibility of responsible animal welfare organizations. As a prospective adopter, you do not have to be afraid of a home check!  You might learn some valuable information about being a pet owner or things to look for and so, you can help educate others to imrove the lives of animals! You can also build a relationship with a very knowledgeable person which can come in handy in the future. Most organizations will give you time to make the necessary, reasonable changes and still adopt.

Some home check considerations included:

  • Access to basic needs like food, water, and shelter.
  • Fences, swimming pools, neighbour’s animals, and surrounding areas.
  • Inspection of the other animals in the home, their general condition as well as their behaviour toward their owners and other animals.
  • Children and their attitude towards the animals.

If the organization doesn’t include both a home check and sterilization then they are NOT A RESPONSIBLE ORGANIZATION and we consider them to be a pet shop. By supporting them you help fuel this massive overpopulation crisis.  No matter what they call it and even if they are registered!

Organizations get blamed for being too strict when it comes to adoptions.  If the process is too ‘hard’ for you, the commitment to the animal for their life will be impossible for you.  You must remember that we are responsible for the life of a sentient being, not just an object you buy at the shop and can return or throw away when you are not happy. It is not just about a good home, but about the right placement for the animal, considering their needs and the availability of resources to meet those needs. 

One popular critique is not allowing adoptions when all the animals in the yard are not sterilized.  It is a standard practice among reputable rescues to require any existing animals to be sterilized, even if you adopt a dog and have a cat. It is counterintuitive to our mission as rescuers to allow puppies, kittens, or bunnies to be homed where there are unsterilized animals. We would not have this massive overpopulation crisis if people sterilized their pets. It is about responsible pet owners.

Remember:

  • It may take some time to gain the adopted pet’s trust.
  • After adoption they need time to adjust (3 months at least) and they might be scared at first or for extended periods.
  • The stress and diet change (which should be done correctly and be species-appropriate) can likely cause diarrhea, or maybe constipation.
  • Even if the bond is instant, you don’t know your pet yet, so take the necessary precautions around other people, children, and pets, and do not introduce them to everyone at once. You are their advocate.
  • Get some professional help from a qualified behaviourist (there is a difference between a trainer and behaviourist) if their are any behaviour concerns.
  • Shelters will not knowingly give you a sick animal, but also contact them when in doubt.
  • Not being “purebred” can actually be beneficial.
  • It is crucial to set the “house rules” and the whole family needs to stick to them and be consistent, so not to confuse the animals.

Rescue is the best breed! We always advise you to go and meet the animals available at your local shelter.  Shelter pets are not broken, they were only failed by humans, but most people only realize this after they have volunteered at the shelters.  Adopting an adult pet can even be better than a puppy and you might just fall in love with one that you never thought of.

There are breed-specific shelters and shelters for birds, rats, bunnies, and other critters.  If you like a particular breed, there are many different ones up for adoption through breed-specific rescues (e.g., google “Poodle” rescue SA).   If you can’t find the pet you’re looking for locally, consider widening your search but keep in mind the stress for the animal if you adopt from out-of-town.

In a world where thousands of animals (about 2800 in SA alone) are humanely killed (PTS/Euthanized) EVERY DAY…… adoption is the only ethical option! Visit your nearest reputable shelter and make a difference today!  ADOPT DON’T SHOP!   

WHEN YOU KNOW BETTER, DO BETTER!

Source: The Bulletin

Looking to adopt?
Search our Animal Welfare directory!

Pet New Years Resolutions – part 3

Pet

Image: Pixabay

Pet New Years Resolutions – part 3

Your pets can be healthier and happier in 2024 with some or all of these pawsome pet new year’s resolutions!

A new year brings new goals and more than 300 days of opportunity for you and your pet to bond, develop healthier habits and discover new ways to live a full life. Your pet can live a better tomorrow with your help. An important first step is to avoid becoming overwhelmed thinking you need to make big changes overnight. Baby steps in the right direction are the way to go. The important thing is to make a plan and move steadily forward.

Re-publication: Originally published 18 January 2023

CREATE A SAFE ENVIRONMENT & A SPACE THAT IS ONLY THEIRS

  • Keep toxic substances like medications, cleaning or gardening products, alcohol and toxic plants out of reach.
  • Just because a pet shop or vet sells something, doesn’t make it safe. Buy safe bedding and toys made of natural material without strong smells.
  • Clean their food and water bowls daily. We prefer stainless steel bowls to plastic.
  • Be careful about cleaning products, non-stick pans, air fresheners, or perfumes and candles you use that can affect your pets.
  • Resolve to take the time to safely secure your dog in the car on all car trips, regardless of the length of the journey. Never leave them alone in a car!
  • Start firework preparation before the festivities catch you unprepared.
  • Secure your yard so it is safe and so that pets can’t escape or get poisoned from the street.
  • Keep your cats safe in your yard.
  • Make sure there is proper shelter from all the elements.
  • Have a safe space in your home that belongs to them.

CREATE A PET-FRIENDLY GARDEN

Since our pets spend the most time at home or in the garden, we should do our best to build them safe, entertaining places to rest and play. Make sure all potentially harmful plants or substances are out of reach. Create some nice hiding places and vertical territory for your pets to enjoy and explore. Learn more about zoopharmacognosy, which allows your pet to self-select remedies that best soothe them, especially during periods of anxiety.

OPEN A SAVINGS ACCOUNT FOR PET EMERGENCIES OR GET PET INSURANCE

Be better prepared for the unexpected. This is a healthy habit and can save you a lot of worries later. Pet owners can now choose from a variety of pet insurance plans that meet their needs and fit every budget.

WRITE A BUCKET LIST FOR SENIOR PETS

What do you think your senior pet wants to do before crossing the Rainbow Bridge? You can make the last phase of your pet’s life memorable by compiling and completing a list of activities that will have their tail wagging and your heart soaring. Prepare in advance to navigate the Rainbow Bridge journey and making the tough but kind decision to euthanize your pet.

Pet

Image by The Paw Company

DO SOME COMMUNITY/PHILANTHROPY WORK FOR ANIMALS IN NEED

  • adopt or foster a pet
  • donate to a rescue or shelter
  • donate pet products like beds, towels, bowls, leashes, collars or food
  • volunteer at a shelter
  • say thank you to rescuers (and a vet)
  • take a shelter dog for a walk
  • sign a few petitions to help us save more animals
  • share lost and found animal posts to improve their chances of being reunited with their owners
  • join a specific cause like “stop fireworks”, “say no to the circus” or sterilizations campaigns

BALANCE YOUR MOOD (ENERGY)

Animals can pick up on our energies. We see how sensitive animals are to our emotional state. They get excited when we are or try to comfort you if you are down by climbing on your lap. If you’re continuously agitated or angry when you come home, this could negatively affect your pet’s emotional state. Maybe a good New Year’s resolution idea this year is to learn how to have balanced energy before coming home to see your furry family. Even though a walk might do you good, maybe not attempt it on a day that you are angry or frustrated or not in the mood because you might ruin the experience for your pet.

Keep in mind that barking, humping and digging for example are natural behaviours, but don’t allow your pet to do things if it frustrates you as this will not be good for either of you. There are alternative and healthy ways to deal with such natural behaviours.

FIND A GOOD PET SITTER

Identify what type of pet sitter service you need. Start your search as soon as possible, ask for referrals and interview potential sitters. For us, a big factor (apart from being trustworthy) is someone who has training in pet first aid (behaviour and grooming are a bonus) and who has professional documentation (forms and terms & conditions). List your pet sitter at your vet.

ADOPT DON’T SHOP

If you are planning to get a new pet, please do your homework in advance about the specie and their needs. It is important that the animal and breed you choose fit with your family’s energy levels and lifestyle. Please do not support breeders who fuel this massive overpopulation crisis, so opt to adopt from reputable organizations that include home checks, a contract and sterilization.

Pet

Image by The Paw Company

LIVE KINDER

Only visit True Sanctuaries and say no to those that offer animal rides, interaction, walk with, pet, or taking of photos with the animals.

  • Use your birthday to raise donations for a reputable animal shelter by asking friends and families to donate or let your wedding registry be donations to an animal shelter.
  • Organize a community clean-up because plastic and other trash are harmful to the environment and animals.
  • Support the life in your backyard like the small ecosystems, and animals and insects that live around your home.
  • Say no to pesticides and poisons because poisoning rats and other animals influences the natural food chain.

Choose to wear it kind by buying and wearing clothing ethically. Avoid leather, fur and wool and try sustainable, animal-friendly alternatives because their lives matter! Don’t buy products that are tested on animals. You can find the approved beauty brands on the Humane Guide.

EDUCATE & ADVOCATE

This is one we really want you to help us with! Try and share an educational post about animals regularly to help others learn more about animal care and welfare. Advocate for the voiceless and the unheard, especially about topics like breeding, selling, petting farms, the circus and fireworks.

FINALLY, CREATE A PLAN

Almost done. You have your pet and you have decided to make some pet-positive changes in the new year. You even have some great ideas now for pawsome resolutions. To execute these resolutions though, there needs to be detailed goals and an easy plan to follow every day. It is important to create a plan that you can stick to. Consider asking a friend to check in with and make sure you are keeping to those resolutions. Maybe start a calendar and write down the days and the goals. The most important part…..get excited!

Do you have a New Year’s resolution for your pet? Are you sticking to them?

WHEN YOU KNOW BETTER, DO BETTER!

Source: The Bulletin

Give your valentine a custom doggy e-card

doggy

Give your valentine a custom doggy e-card

Need a perfect Valentine’s Day gift? We’ve got your paws covered.

Sponsor one of our homeless dogs in your valentine’s name and we’ll send him/her a custom e-card.

How it works:

  • Pick a pet you wish to sponsor (see images below)
  • Choose a sponsorship option
  • Make your sponsorship donation
  • Send your proof of donation, name, valentine’s name, valentine’s email address and a message you wish to include to donations@mdzananda.co.za
  • We will make the e-card and send it to your love

Sponsorship options

  • R 40: Flea and tick treatment
  • R 70: Vaccination
  • R 100:  Food for a week
  • R 200:  Puppy / kitten’s 3 vital vaccinations & dewormers
  • R 500:  Caring for a shelter pet for one month
  • R 650:  Sterilisation
All our homeless dogs are up for adoption.
Make them your valentine forever by fostering or adopting.
doggy
Contact: admin@mdzananda.co.za or WhatsApp 064 985 2513  for enquiries.
For cats:
please contact our partner Luna Cat Rescue on WhatsApp 082 390 1670 / info@lunacatrescue.co.za
 

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