L'Atelier Robert Coane




Cats in woman's will in first Island case of a N.Y. law that allows creation of special trust
Sunday, August 31, 2008

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. -- Pet lovers -- particularly if they live alone -- worry about who will take care of Fido and Mittens once they're gone.

The late Leona Helmsley was so worried, she left her little canine millions and it attracted national attention. But you don't have to be a billionaire to make sure your pet is financially secure after you're dead and buried. Thanks to a little-known law, pet owners can create honorary trusts in their will to ensure their precious pets receive proper treatment when they're gone.

In the first case of its kind in the borough, Surrogate Robert J. Gigante recently validated a Westerleigh woman's will which leaves a one-quarter share of her $60,000 estate for the care of her pet cats.

"Most people would not know you could do this," Gigante said. "The law shows society's acceptance of people's love and concern for animals."

Susan M. Ryder died June 19 at the age of 65. A brokerage-house manager, Mrs. Ryder never married or had children. But she had "a number of cats," said Lainie R. Fastman, her lawyer, who could not specify how many.

In a will composed a month before her death, Ms. Ryder decreed that 25 percent, or $15,000 of her estate, be set aside for the care of her animals. "The welfare of my pets is paramount," Ms. Ryder said in her will. The remainder of the estate is to be divided among Ms. Ryder's two siblings and eight nieces and nephews.

A close friend, Barbara Dowell, was named trustee to look after her cats.

"Her big concern was to take care of her pets after her death," said Ms. Fastman, an associate of the Stapleton law firm of Hall and Hall, adding she could not discuss the will in greater detail due to attorney-client privilege.

Ms. Dowell, who is not a named beneficiary, was very "interested" in ensuring the animals' well-being, said Ms. Fastman. She is to manage the trust in the cats' benefit and dispense of the money as needed. She will be paid no more than $500 per year for her services, according to the will.

By law, the pet trust terminates on the death of all the animals it covers or at the end of 21 years, whichever comes first. Any remaining money returns to the estate or another designated beneficiary.

Ms. Fastman said she has established similar lifetime-care provisions for pets in a number of other clients' wills. Ms. Dowell declined comment when reached by telephone.

Honorary trusts for pets were established by law in New York in 1996. Before then, pet owners could leave money to a person to care for their pet or give that person a gift for the same purpose. However, it was difficult to ensure the money was spent on the pet. Another option was to give the pet and money to a humane society, although many owners did not want to do that.

Under the current law, the trustee has a fiduciary duty to use the funds for the animal. A judge can reduce the trust if he determines it "substantially exceeds" the amount required for the intended use. In the most famous case, Judge Renee R. Roth of Manhattan Surrogate's Court earlier this year slashed the $12 million that hotelier and real-estate magnate Leona Helmsley left in her will to her Maltese dog named Trouble. Judge Roth allowed $2 million for the animal's care, ruling that the remaining $10 million would go into a multi-billion-dollar trust that could be used to care for dogs
Getting Rover Ready for the Road
August 28, 2008

Venturing off on a road trip and don't want to leave your pup behind? Here are
a few ways to make longer car journeys easier for her:

Prepare her. Take her on a few shorter rides around town to get her warmed
up and more used to traveling in the car.

Protect her. Keep the snout inside the vehicle at all times. The breeze can
be refreshing, but it can also whip up dirt and debris, which could get in
her eyes.

Entertain her. Give your dog a favorite toy to occupy her during the ride,
and try to stop and stretch every 2 hours.
Cooler Canine Cuts
August 21, 2008

Keeping your dog clean and pretty not only makes him happier and healthier but
also keeps him cooler during the final few steamy weeks of summer. Although
weekly brushings help remove dirt and tangles and keep skin clean, many dogs --
especially longer-haired ones -- can benefit from having their coat trimmed or
shaved in the summer. If you're thinking about taking your pet to a puppy salon
for a trim or a shave, look for a certified groomer, or ask your vet for a
recommendation. And, remember to protect that newly exposed skin with some
doggie sunscreen.








Pet Health Alert: Protect Fido and Fluffy from Fleas
August 15, 2008.

As the festive days of summer wane in many parts of the country, one little parasite keeps the party hopping in warm, humid areas where he reigns. With nearly 2,000 species and subspecies, the flea thrives at temperatures of 65 to 80 degrees and feeds on the blood of the unsuspecting—especially cats and dogs.

Fleas are hearty and nimble pests, and when searching for a host, they can jump up to two feet, 10,000 times in a row—that adds up to the length of three football fields! They can also cause troublesome health problems in companion animals, such as anemia, skin allergies and tapeworms.

These legendary leapers are tough to fight, but the ASPCA offers tips that will rub your pets the right way:

Know your enemy: Confirm your pet has fleas by identifying signs such as droppings or “flea dirt” in your pet’s coat, excessive scratching and scabs.

What goes around comes around: Treat all of your pets, not just those who show outward signs of infestation.

Shine on, pet parent: Thoroughly clean your house, including rugs, bedding and upholstery, and discard any used vacuum bags.

Honor—and trim—nature’s gifts: Since fleas love long grass and shady outdoor spots, remember to treat and maintain your yard as carefully as your house.

Doctor knows best: Talk to your vet about choosing the right, species-specific treatment for your pet, such as a topical, liquid insecticide applied to the back of the neck. Never use products for dogs on cats, and vice versa. Also ask your vet to recommend products for treating your yard.

“Cats especially are extremely sensitive to insecticides, and pets can die from improper use of flea control products,” says Dr. Steven Hansen, veterinary toxicologist & ASPCA Senior Vice President. “Just a few drops of concentrated permethrin, present in many spot-on treatments for dogs, can be lethal to cats.”

To avoid accidents, pet parents should read all product labels and follow directions for proper use. For more information about flea prevention and pet health, please read our top ten medical tips.
Cleanliness Is Next to Flealessness
August 14, 2008

As many pet owners know, summer isn't just swimsuit season -- it's also flea
season, so use the hints below to help keep these pests from settling in:

Suck 'em up. Vacuum frequently, and change the bag promptly -- any swept-up
fleas can continue to live (and breed!) inside the vac.

Wash 'em away. Keep your pup's bedding fresh by washing or changing it

Cut 'em down. Stay on top of lawn maintenance. Overgrown grass or weeds and
piles of sand or gravel are attractive homes for fleas.

Sweep 'em away. Keep outdoor areas -- like your deck and porch -- swept and














Tips for traveling with your animal friends
August 12, 2008

The following are some vacation tips to ensure that your animals will enjoy the trip:

- Outfit your companion animal with clear identification--legible tags on collars/harnesses and microchips (a must!) can help other people identify animals who
accidentally get separated from their families.

- Take a clear, recent photograph of your companion animal with you so that you can show it to people or use it on posters in case he or she gets lost or stolen.

- Never leave your companion animal alone in the car--or anywhere else unattended. Animals can suffer and die within minutes when they're left inside parked cars, even on mildly warm days.

- Carry water for rest stops. No-spill travel bowls are available in pet-supply stores and online. (Remember: Never shop at PetSmart, PETCO, or any other stores that sell live animals!).

- To prevent sickness, feed dogs early so that they don't eat in the few hours before departure. For dogs prone to carsickness, consult your veterinarian for remedies or try ginger capsules, which are available at health-food stores. You'll also want to be sure to stop frequently to walk your dog while on the road.

- Cats can turn into escape artists on the road, so--at all times while in the car--keep them in sturdy, well-ventilated carriers that are big enough to contain a small litter pan and still allow them to stand up, stretch, and turn around comfortably. Line the carrier with a soft towel or a baby blanket, and secure the carrier to the seat with a seatbelt or a bungee cord.

- Never open a car window or door--not even a crack--when your cat or dog is unrestrained. Countless dogs and cats have been lost at tollbooths and rest stops this way.

- If you are flying, only take your animals with you if they can fly in the cabin with you (in a carrier that can be placed under the seat). It's dangerous and frightening for animals to fly in the cargo hold--no matter what assurances airlines may give. Many animals have escaped from their carriers and gotten lost or died from heat exhaustion when temperature controls failed or flights were delayed on the tarmac.

By taking just a few simple precautions like those mentioned above, you'll be helping to ensure a safe and fun vacation for both you and the animals who are such an important part of your life.

Pet First Aid and Disaster Response Training
Submitted by: Lani Byrd – Emergency Care and Safety Institute
August 11,2008

Have you ever lost an ill or injured pet in death because competent veterinary care wasn’t immediately available? Do you know someone who has? What would you do if your pet was choking? Ingested poison? Having a seizure? Bleeding? Was in shock? Do you have the knowledge to treat these and other symptoms on your pet should they arise? What if you have to evacuate your area? What steps will you take to ensure your pet is properly treated?

We would like to introduce you to the Emergency Care and Safety Institute’s Pet First Aid and Disaster Response program, developed in partnership with Pets America. This 3 1⁄2 hour program covers common health and safety-related issues, first aid basics, when to seek professional care, and disaster planning steps for the proper care of pets. Completion of this course will provide participants with a 3-year course completion card.
When you or I have a medical emergency, we can call 9-1-1 and have an ambulance care for us. Animals do not have this luxury. You can either rush them to an emergency clinic (which is usually miles away from where you are), or you can call your veterinary clinic, get the answering service, have them page your doctor, and then wait for them to call you back. By then, your pet’s chances for survival have greatly diminished.  
To find an instructor teaching the Pet First Aid and Disaster Preparedness course in your area, or for information on how to become a Pet First Aid instructor at no cost, please call 1.800.541.5691 or email us at info@ECSInstitute.org .
Get involved with whatever local community programs are going on in your area. There are many pet lovers like yourself out there who would be thrilled to have an opportunity to attend a Pet First Aid and Disaster Response class.

To order a Pet First Aid and Disaster Response Guide, please click here .
How to Stop Black Dog Syndrome
August 7, 2008

Unless you've worked in an animal shelter, you've probably never heard of Black
Dog Syndrome
-- a term that refers to the difficulty shelters have finding
families for dark-coated dogs. Whether it's due to superstition or to visions
of black hair on light-colored sofas, rugs, and clothes, too many of these
lovable dogs are missing out on good homes and happy lives. So if you've been
toying with the idea of adopting a black Lab, poodle, or any other dark-haired
beauty, there's really no better time than now to give it some serious

No Trip to the Beach: Popular Sago Palm Plant Is Toxic to Pets
August 1, 2008

Daydreaming of a sandy beach and a breeze shimmying through the palm trees? Paradise, right? Not so fast, says Fido. Though palm trees evoke relaxation of the highest order, Sago palm (Cycas revolute )—a stocky member of the Cycad family of plants —is downright dangerous to our furry companions.

According to the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) in Urbana, IL, pet poisonings from the increasingly popular plant are on the rise. Since 2003, the Center has seen an increase in cases of Sago palm and Cycad poisonings by more than 200 percent. APCC data also reveals that 50 percent to 75 percent of those cases resulted in fatalities.

A native of Southern Japan, Sago palm has been a common addition to outdoor landscaping in sunny climes, but in recent years, has also emerged as a trendy houseplant in northern states. Though attractive with its dark green leaves and hairy trunk, the plant is highly toxic to cats and dogs. Common signs of Sago palm poisoning include vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, depression, seizures and liver failure.

“Many pet parents may not be familiar with the toxic effects of Cycad palms, and assume the only poisonous portions are the seeds or nuts,” says Dr. Sharon Gwaltney-Brant, veterinary toxicologist and APCC Vice President. “But all parts of the plant are toxic if ingested.”

As always, pet parents should guard against any mishaps and prevent their furry beloveds from coming into contact with Sago palm plants by placing them out of reach. Or consider a nontoxic alternative to brighten your home and keep the dog days of summer cool and carefree.

Doggie Paddle Do's and Don'ts
July 24, 2008

Jumping into the water is a
great way for your dog to cool off, especially on
hot, steamy days. Swimming can also be a great everyday activity, since it's
easy on the joints, but never force it on your pup if he isn't a fan of the
water. If he is, always be cautious of water quality, and don't let him drink
from the pool, lake, stream, or ocean. Swallowing too much salt water or
chlorine can very quickly make your dog sick. Keep a close eye on him while
he's paddling around, and help him steer clear of deep waters and strong

20 July, 2008

Q: About a year ago, I purchased a Pomeranian for $1,500 from a friend who said he was moving and had to give up the dog. He said he’d found it at the beach the year before and was unable to locate its owner. Six months later, he announced that he had in fact seen fliers for the lost dog but declined to contact its owner. My children and I love the dog, but must we now try to find the original owners? M. S., MANHASSET, N.Y.

A: Two years on, it might be tough to find the original owner, but you should try — to clear your conscience and set an example for your kids. Put yourself in the owner’s (chewed-up and drooled-upon) shoes. Wouldn’t you want your dog back, even now? Wouldn’t you at least want to know that your dog is happy and healthy? (And worth a cool $1,500 on the black market?)

It would be sad to part with the dog but worse to remain passive now that you know its origins (and worse still to pal around with your friend now that you know his values). And remember that every shelter houses wonderful dogs in need of homes.

UPDATE: M. S. still has the dog but plans to put up fliers soon.

Original: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/20/magazine/20wwln-ethicist-t.html?_r=1&ref=magazine&oref=slogin

Bad Medicine
July 17, 2008

Just because prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) medications are marked
childproof doesn't mean they're dogproof. In fact, most dogs find it way too
easy to chew through plastic pill containers if given the opportunity. What's
scary is that some of the most common drugs and supplements -- including OTC
painkillers, cold medicines, antidepressants, cancer medications, diet pills,
and vitamins -- are potentially lethal to dogs, even in relatively small doses.
Keep your pooch safe by storing all meds, vitamins, and supplements in a secure
cabinet that's out of your pet's reach.

Summer Care Tips for You and Your Pets
July 17, 2008

Summer is a time for both you and your pet to enjoy the sunshine and outdoors, but along with the fun, the season also offers up situations that can endanger your pet. By taking precautions, you can decrease the chance that disaster will happen. The HSUS offers these tips for pet owners to keep their furry friends safe this summer: 

Go to: Summer-Care-Tips-for-You-and-Your-Pets

What's Your Pet Telling You About Pain?
July - August, 2008

Animals do a great job of hiding their pain, which keeps them safe from predators in the wild. So how do you know when your pet is sick or injured?

The American Animal Hospital Association and the Association of American FEline Practitioners have created pain management guidelines for Dogs and Cats. People with pets should contact their veterinarian if they observe:

• Abnormal chewing habits

• Drastic weight gain or loss

• Avoidance of affection or handling

• Decreased movement and exercise

• Excessive licking or self-biting

• Uncharacteristic "accidents"

Quality Time with Pooch Is Good Medicine
March 8, 2007

Petting a dog is a well-known stress reliever, and new research shows
that your four-legged companion can benefit your heart and overall
health as well.

Dogs may have the upper paw in helping you stay healthy. A study
reviewing research on the health benefits of having a pet concluded
that, compared to cat owners or people without pets, dog owners have
lower cholesterol and blood pressure, suffer from fewer health problems,
and recover more quickly from serious illness. Researchers say that
stroking any animal buffers stress, but dog owners also walk their pets
and often socialize along the way, activities that are well-known health

Soothing Celebrations
July 3, 2008

Is your dog easily rattled by loud noises? Try these tactics to help her better
handle Fourth of July fanfare:

Wear her out. Take her for a long walk before the excitement begins.

Tuck her in. Make sure she's comfortable and settled inside the house with
a good chew toy to keep her occupied.

Distract her. Turn on a stereo, TV, or white-noise machine to block out
some of the outdoor commotion.

Bring your dog outside to celebrate only if you're confident she can handle the
hubbub. If she's up for it, keep her leashed and close to you at all times.

July 4th Safety Tips: Fireworks Are Not a Dog's Best Friend
June 27, 2008

As the country dons its red, white and blue to celebrate Independence Day, nothing says patriotism like a good old-fashioned barbecue with a side of fireworks. But what’s fun for people can often be a downright drag for our furry friends. The ASPCA offers some advice to help you keep your pets singing “Oh Say Can You See” all the way to the Fifth.

- Keep your pets on the wagon. Alcohol is potentially poisonous to animal companions, so place your wine, beer and spirits out of their reach.
- Avoid feeding scraps from the grill. Any change in your pet’s diet can result in stomach upset. Plus, certain foods like onions, avocado, grapes and raisins can be toxic.
- Bugs biting? Avoid lathering your pet with any insect repellent or sunscreen not intended for the four-legged kind.
- Don’t let Spot start the fire. Keep your pet away from matches and lighter fluid, which, if ingested, can be extremely irritating to the stomach, lungs and central nervous system.

As the sun sets on the Fourth, remember that fireworks are not a dog’s best friend. Dr. Pamela Reid, Vice President, ASPCA Animal Behavior Center, recommends that you keep your dog at home, instead of taking him to your neighborhood display. “He’ll be much happier at home listening to classical music,” says Dr. Reid. “Also, be sure to keep him inside, instead of in the backyard, since even the most timid dog can leap a six-foot fence if he’s scared enough.”

If your dog suddenly shows signs of distress from outside noise, “relocate to the basement or another quiet part of the house,” suggests Dr. Reid. “Or try giving him a Kong toy stuffed with peanut butter. The persistent licking should calm his nerves.”
If you anticipate that your pet will be scared on the Fourth, talk to your vet. He may prescribe a mild sedative, which should be administered one hour before the festivities begin. Please read our other holiday tips , and have a safe and saucy Independence Day!

How Chewing Cleans Teeth
June 26, 2008

Your dog's breath is supposed to smell a little, well, doggy, right? Wrong!

Stinky breath isn't normal or healthy, and gum disease is an all-too-common
doggy ailment. Brushing every day is the best prevention. But choosing hard
food over soft can also help scrape your dog's teeth clean as he chews, and
it's less likely than soft food to get stuck between teeth. Chomping on chew
toys can also have a cleaning effect. If you're considering treats or food
formulated for oral health, ask your vet if any of the products would be
Positive Reinforcement: Training Your Dog with Treats and Praise

We all like to be praised rather than punished. The same is true for your dog, and that's the theory behind positive reinforcement. Positive reinforcement means giving your pet something pleasant or rewarding immediately after she does something you want her to do. Because your praise or reward makes her more likely to repeat that behavior in the future, it is one of your most powerful tools for shaping or changing your dog's behavior.

Correct timing is essential when using positive reinforcement. The reward must occur immediately—within seconds —or your pet may not associate it with the proper action. For example, if you have your dog "sit" but reward her after she's already stood back up, she'll think she's being rewarded for standing up.

Consistency is also essential. Everyone in the family should use the same commands. It might help to post these where everyone can become familiar with them. The most commonly used commands for dogs are:

"watch me"
"down" (which means "lie down")
"off" (which means "get off of me" or "get off the furniture")
"heel" (or "let's go" or "with me")
"leave it"

Consistency means always rewarding the desired behavior and never rewarding undesired behavior.

Using Positive Reinforcement
Complete article
How to Make Your Dog Younger
June 17, 2008

Keeping your best friend's DogAge as young as can be helps ensure that the two of you will have more time to spend together. To help make your dog younger, assist in developing these 7 habits:

1. Maintain a lean physique, with a clearly defined and tucked-up waist.
Controlling your dog's caloric intake and increasing exercise helps to prevent
obesity and other health issues, which can make his or her DogAge up to 1.8
years younger.

2. Eat only the amount of dog food necessary to maintain an ideal body
condition. Measure servings with a standardized measuring cup, and monitor
body condition regularly. Prevent your dog from overeating by putting the dog
food bowl out only at mealtimes and removing it as soon as your dog stops
eating. Monitoring your dog's diet can make his or her DogAge up to 1.8 years

3. Be trained to respond to commands the majority of the time. Well-behaved
dogs are safer dogs. Obedience training can make your pet's DogAge up to 1.3
years younger.

4. Enjoy teeth-cleaning chews or biscuits and tooth brushing three times per
week. Next time you want to reward your pup with a snack, choose a treat that's
teeth-friendly. Your dog will enjoy the biscuit, and you'll appreciate his or
her smile. Keeping your dog's teeth clean can make his or her DogAge up to 6
months younger.

5. Exercise or play actively at least three times per day for a minimum of 15
minutes each time. Keep playtime interesting by diversifying your dog's
activities. For example, occasionally swap playing catch in the yard with
visits to new parks. Keeping your dog active regularly can make his or her
DogAge up to 6 months younger.

6. Get vaccinated and visit the veterinarian for regular checkups. Many
veterinarians agree that pets should be vaccinated to help prevent illness and
diseases; ask your dog's vet which vaccines are necessary. Vaccinating your dog
can make his or her DogAge up to 6 months younger.

7. Be safe in the yard, on walks, and on trips by using protective barriers and
gear such as fences, leashes, and dog carriers. The less trouble your dog
finds, the younger and healthier he or she will be. Protecting your dog from
harm can make his or her DogAge up to 6 months younger.

Monthly Home Exam -- How-To's, Part 2
June 12, 2008

• Skin irritation: Brush fur in the opposite direction of growth to check skin
for redness or irritation. Black, crusty residue could be a sign of fleas.

• Lymph-node pain: Use gentle pressure to feel around the base of the jaw, in
front of the shoulder blades, behind the "elbows" of the front and back legs,
and where the thighs meet the abdomen, noting anything that is prominent or
seems painful.

• Lumps, bumps, or growths: Report anything new to your vet.

• Weight changes: Ideally, it should remain stable from month to month.

Dog Healthcare 101
June 10, 2008

Making sure your dog stays healthy requires regular care. Taking precautions
now to protect your dog's health can help guard against health conditions down
the road and help ensure a longer, healthier life for your pet. In fact,
regular vaccinations and visits to the vet can keep your dog up to 6 months

1) Neuter/spay your dog.
Studies indicate that spaying female dogs before they fully mature may significantly reduce the risk of breast cancer. This also eliminates the chance of uterine infections. Neutering male dogs prevents testicular cancer and can help prevent prostate problems. Neutering also can help reduce some behavioral problems.

When: If possible, both procedures should be performed by 6 months of age.

2) Stay current on vaccinations.

Vaccination programs fall into two categories: core and non-core. Core
vaccinations protect against serious diseases that are sometimes fatal.
Non-core vaccinations are determined according to your dog's breed,
lifestyle, or surrounding environment. Speak with your dog's vet to see
which vaccinations are necessary.

When: Pet vaccination programs will vary. Be sure to ask your dog's vet for
a schedule specific to your dog's needs. Post this information in a visible
place to remind you when it's time to vaccinate. Also, ask your vet if it's
necessary to revaccinate beyond puppyhood.

3) Schedule regular vet visits.
Research shows that a lack of veterinary care has been a leading factor in
the relinquishment of dogs to animal shelters. Many signs of canine health
conditions are not visible to the untrained eye, so routine vet
appointments are recommended. Scheduling an annual physical exam allows
your veterinarian to evaluate your dog's health and detect problems before
they develop into more serious conditions.

When: Adult dogs should visit the vet once a year. Senior dogs (6+ years)
should visit the vet biannually for optimal care.

Remember, healthy pets make more enjoyable companions. Taking the time each day to care for your dog's health and well-being will keep you both content for years to come.

Protect Your Pup from Pesticides
May 8, 2008

Using fertilizers, herbicides, or insecticides to keep your yard green? If so,
handle them with care, because many can be toxic to your dog. Applying the
herbicide 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid, in particular, four or more times per
season has been shown to double a dog's risk of developing lymphoma. To reduce
your pet's exposure to these chemicals:

• Keep all lawn chemicals safely out of reach.

• Take any food bowls and water dishes inside when applying outdoor chemicals.

• Avoid overdosing your lawn with products, which can leave behind residue
and increase the odds of your dog coming in contact with toxins.

• Wait until all treatments have dried before allowing your dog back on the

June 6, 2008

Cherries and lemons and apples, oh my! While summer fruits are good for you, certain parts of these seasonal offerings can be potentially irritating—and in some situations, occasionally toxic—to companion animals.

According to our experts at the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, the peels, fruit and seeds of citrus plants such as lemons, oranges, limes and grapefruits contain varying amounts of citric acid, limonin and volatile oils that can cause gastrointestinal irritation and result in vomiting and diarrhea. As for apples, cherries, peaches and apricots, their stems, leaves and seeds contain cyanogenic glycosides that have the potential to cause vomiting and loss of appetite—and in severe cases, weakness, difficulty breathing, hyperventilation, shock and even death.

“Typically, these severe effects develop from very large ingestions of plant material, more likely to occur with grazing animals such as horses or other livestock,” says the ASPCA’s Dana Farbman, CVT. “The consumption of a few segments of citrus fruit, an apple or two, or a few cherries would usually not be expected to cause serious problems beyond perhaps minor stomach upset. However, it is important for animal owners to be aware of the potential for problems that these fruit trees can produce.”
As a responsible pet parent, it’s always a good idea to become familiar with different types of plants in and around the home—and make sure that potentially poisonous species are not accessible to your pets.

For lists of both safe and potentially toxic plants, please visit the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center online.

Monthly Home Exam How-To's
June 5, 2008

Your pooch counts on you to keep him healthy. Below are a few symptoms to be on the lookout for:

Eye discoloration: Pull back the top eyelid. If the white of the eye appears
yellow or orange, or if it looks pink and irritated (a sign of
conjunctivitis), call your vet.

Nose issues: Look for roughness, peeling, pigmentation changes, or unusual

Oral oddities: Check the teeth for tarter and the gum line for growths.

Signs of ear infection: Look for redness, hair loss around ears, odor,
abnormal discharge or crusting, or wincing when ear is touched.

Who could hurt an innocent animal?
Prevent cruelty and rescue its victims with your gift today.
June 4.2008

For more than 140 years, the ASPCA, with tremendous support and generosity from people like you , has been making a difference in animals’ lives. Such was the case with a sweet dog named Miss Bea.

An anonymous tip made us aware of Miss Bea’s deplorable situation. When our Humane Law Enforcement Agents arrived on the scene, what they discovered was absolutely awful. Miss Bea was locked in a closet, her coat a solid mass of matted fur, laden with urine, feces, and filth. In addition, she was suffering from an ear infection and nails so long they had curled around and were piercing her paw pads.

As if this was not enough, Miss Bea’s lack of grooming and exercise had caused the muscles in her front legs to atrophy. She had been denied exercise and basic grooming for so long that she could no longer walk or even stand on her own. Given the extent of the neglect in this case, the owner was immediately arrested on animal cruelty charges.

Your support of our efforts at the ASPCA is the best thing, all too often the only good thing, in the lives of abused, betrayed pets like Miss Bea. Find out how that support saved Miss Bea’s life.

The Benefits of a Well-Behaved Dog
June 3, 2008

Proper training keeps your dog happy, healthy, and young. No matter what the age, size, or breed, training your dog to respond to basic commands most of the
time can make his or her DogAge up to 1.3 years younger.

If your dog is displaying undesirable behaviors, it's never too late to train
your pet. Most behavioral problems, such as aggression, begging, and home or
yard destruction, can be resolved with a basic training program.

One of the most common behavioral problems many dog owners encounter is
excessive barking. Knowing the causes of this undesirable behavior will help
you determine how to prevent your dog from barking more often than necessary.

Keep the Ruff! Ruff! Ruff! to a Minimum
If excessive barking is a problem while you are at home or out on a walk,
teaching your dog to respond to the "quiet" command will help stop the
outbursts. To be most effective, state the command in a strong, firm voice --
don't yell -- while your dog is barking. Barking when left at home alone may
mean that he or she is lonely or bored. Or, it may be a sign of separation

A bored dog needs entertainment. You can prevent boredom by providing toys,
especially for times when you are not around. The more time your dog spends
playing with toys, the less time he or she will spend barking or getting into
unwanted mischief. Providing chew toys also helps keep your dog's mouth too
occupied to bark. Try designating one special toy for the times when you are
away; this helps shift your dog's focus away from your absence.

A lonely dog needs companionship. If you suspect the barking is due to
loneliness, try spending more time with your dog. Giving your pet extra
attention -- by taking more walks together or increasing playtime with other
dogs -- may help minimize barking.

Training your dog is a fundamental part of pet care. Your dog's ability to obey
basic commands and behave appropriately will help protect him or her from harm for years to come. Well-behaved and disciplined dogs are not only safer, but also they are happier . . . and so are their owners.

One Bag Doesn't Fit All
May 29, 2008

Did you know that your dog's nutritional needs can change, depending on her age and stage of life? Consult your vet before making any food changes. If you get the go-ahead, consider the following factors:

Most young, growing dogs need more food, but overfeeding large-breed puppies can cause their bodies to outgrow their bones, which can lead to orthopedic disease.

Pregnant or lactating dogs, and those that live outside during very cold weather, have increased calorie needs.

Large breeds over 5 years old and smaller breeds over 7 years should eat a diet that has less fat; is low in phosphorous, to help reduce the risk of renal disease; and contains more fiber, to prevent constipation.

Making Your Dog Smarter
May 27, 2008

There's no denying that dogs are smart. According to experts, however, you can
do more than measure that intelligence. You can also increase it -- and add to
your dog's happiness in the process.

A World of Learning Opportunities
Dogs are natural learners, and our world is their classroom. They adapt to our
lifestyles and schedules, learn our commands, and even understand our moods.
Under that adaptive nature is a desire to please. Making you happy makes them happy. This provides many opportunities for training and learning. Teach your dog tricks and games, and take him places. (Get tips on how to keep your dog safe when you travel.) Give him as many opportunities as possible to stimulate his mind while strengthening your relationship. You may find that your dog's IQ test scores actually increase!

Something to Talk About

The average dog can learn about 165 spoken words. Recently, German scientists reported that a 9-year-old border collie named Rico actually knew the names of more than 200 objects -- similar to the vocabulary of a 3 1/2-year-old child.

A dog's understanding of our language and inflection can enable responses
ranging from singular to more elaborate.

So how do you expand your dog's vocabulary?
According to Dr. Stanley Coren, author of The Intelligence of Dogs, you simply need to talk to your pet. "You should always use the same words for the same things and whenever you're doing any action which the dog is involved in, you tell the dog," he says. Dr. Coren also recommends using the dog's name before any command, and using the same commands every time.

Happiness Can Be Learned
A smarter dog is a happier dog. Learning can actually make your dog more
confident -- about himself and about his relationship with you. So help your dog
expand his mind. It'll make you both feel better.

May 23, 2008

Your summer vacation’s almost here—and for some pet parents, traveling’s no fun if the four-legged members of the family can’t come along. But traveling without thoughtful preparation can be stressful, both for you and your animal companions. Before you embark on your journey, the ASPCA would like to offer a few helpful hints.

Please visit your veterinarian before traveling to make sure your pet is up to date on vaccinations and has all the medications he needs. Also ask about parasites or other health risks native to your destination.

Your pet should always wear a collar and ID tag clearly stating an address or phone number where you can be reached—that includes cell phone number and destination info.

Always bring plenty of plastic jugs filled with bottled or tap water from home. Drinking water she’s not used to could upset your pet’s stomach. If flying, freeze water in a bowl the night before. It won’t spill during loading and it’ll melt by the time she’s thirsty.
Fly your pet in a USDA-approved shipping crate large enough for her to comfortably stand, sit and turn around in. Write “Live Animal” in large letters on at least two sides of the crate, and draw arrows indicating the crate’s upright position. (Of course you should ask the airline if small animals can fly with you in the cabin.)

If driving, never leave your pet in a parked automobile. On a hot day, even with the windows open, a stationary vehicle can become a furnace in no time, and heatstroke can develop.

To ensure your trip is a good one, please read our complete air and road travel tips .
May 23, 2008

Reporting animal cruelty is always the right thing to do, but first you have to learn how. For all the answers, please read our new Reporting Cruelty FAQ . It includes information on recognizing and reporting animal cruelty, as well as the basics on cruelty laws and how to talk to children about this important issue. Check it out and learn the practical—even lifesaving—tips you can use should you meet an animal who needs your help.
Keepin' It Safe at the Dog Park
May 22, 2008

Mention a trip to the dog park, and tails usually start wagging. The fresh air,
exercise, and socializing are great for your pooch. To keep these outings safe
and fun for everyone, ask yourself a couple of questions before bounding out
the door:

Are your dog's vaccinations up to date? This helps reduce the chance of
picking up any illnesses from other dogs on the playground.

Are you confident about your dog's training? Dog parks can be hectic
places. But knowing that your pet will respond to your voice commands, even
while playing with other dogs, will make it a more relaxing outing.
Nutrition Fit for a Dog

Proper nutrition isn't a concern for only human health. It's important for your
dog's health, too. Compared to dogs of optimal weight for their breed,
overweight dogs have a higher risk of diseases such as heart disease, diabetes,
and arthritis. You can help keep your dog at a health-enhancing weight by
feeding him or her a well-balanced, nutritious diet that follows these four
dietary guidelines:

1) Keep the Calorie Count Down
The best diet for your dog is one that is appropriately low in calories.
Controlling daily caloric intake is key to managing his or her weight. Keeping
extra calories out of your dog's diet can make him or her up to 1.8 years
younger. Your veterinarian can help you determine how many calories your dog needs each day.

Keys to controlling caloric intake:

Look for a dog food that is complete, balanced, and scientifically formulated for your dog's needs.

Follow the directions on the dog food package.

Use a measuring cup or scoop to divide your dog's food into consistent and
equal portions.

Establish set feeding times and stick to this schedule.

2) Choose Nutrient-Rich Dog Food
When selecting dog food, make sure the food is appropriate for your dog's age,
size, and nutrition needs. In general, optimal adult dog diets should include
18% of daily calories from protein and 5% from fats, when using dry food.
Senior dogs may need a little more protein than adult dogs. Puppies require
more protein and a little more fat than adult dogs.

3) Put the Food Bowl Away

If given the opportunity to eat all day long, most dogs probably will. Some
dogs will eat up to 25% more food than they need, which can lead to obesity
and other conditions. Leaving a filled food bowl out at all times encourages
overeating. Instead, serve measured food portions at set mealtimes. Mealtime
frequency depends on the age, size, and activity level of your dog. Find out
how often you should feed your dog.

4) Minimize Snacks
All dogs enjoy treats. Providing your dog with occasional snacks and treats is
fine, as long as they do not exceed 10% of his or her total dietary intake.
Also, choose only treats that are made especially for dogs, such as edible
chew bones and teeth cleaning biscuits. Note: pet foods marketed as "snacks"
are not required to list nutrition information on the package.
Save Chewing Pups from Shocks
April 24, 2008
For young pups, few things are more satisfying than a good chew. When teething, it hardly matters to them what they've got between their teeth. For safety, make sure electrical cords aren't a chewing option by taking these precautions:
• Keep power cords and strips as far out of reach and sight as possible.
• Encase any visible cords in thick plastic sleeves.
•Don't let young pups roam the house while you're out. Set them up with chew toys, and keep them in a crate or penned off in a room where they can't find trouble.

April 11, 2008


Brunfelsia Pauciflora
Brunfelsia Americana

According to a recently published study by Dr. Safdar Khan, veterinary toxicologist for the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC), dogs seem to be particularly attracted to the seeds and berries of the Brunfelsia plant, commonly known as “morning, noon and night” and “yesterday, today and tomorrow.” In fact, canines are most susceptible to poisoning by this gardener’s favorite, aptly named for its fragrant flowers that bloom in vivid purple and gradually change to lavender before fading to white.

Full Article >>>






Do You Know How to Poison-Proof Your Home?
March 7, 2008

Ready to do a little homework, pet parents? National Poison Prevention Week is almost here—March 16 to March 22—and because our pets depend on us to keep them safe, we think it’s the perfect time to review the harmful substances your furry explorers may encounter at home. Here are just a few ways to ensure that your household is pet poison-proof:

* Keep prescription and over-the-counter drugs such as painkillers, cold and flu preparations and antidepressants behind tightly closed cabinet doors.
* Make sure chocolate, coffee and other potentially dangerous foods are kept out of pets' reach.
* When using products to eliminate fleas, ticks and other pests, follow directions exactly. Be sure the item you’re using has been formulated specifically for your pet, and check with your veterinarian before using it.
* Many common household plants such as lilies, azaleas and kalanchoe can cause surprisingly severe, even life-threatening effects in pets. Please check our complete lists of toxic and nontoxic plants.
* Take care to use cleaning products that have been proven safe for use around pets. If you do use bleaches, detergents or disinfectants, keep your pets away from the cleaned areas until the product has dried thoroughly, and be sure to store the products in a secure place.

Read more - http://www.aspca.org/site/PageServer?pagename=media_tristatenewsalert030708#1

DogAge Tip of the Week
Change Can Be Bad

February 28, 2008

A drastic change in behavior may indicate pain or injury in your pet.

Growling, biting, wincing, or avoidance of physical contact may be a sign of an acute injury. Reserved or withdrawn behaviors may indicate chronic pain. If your dog suddenly exhibits a need for constant attention or seclusion, or if he or she is excessively irritable, submissive, listless, or restless, contact your vet for a proper diagnosis and treatment.





DogAge Tip of the Week
Good Neighbor Policy
February 21, 2008

Being a good neighbor and conscientious pet owner can help keep your dog safe from intentional acts of cruelty.

Unsupervised, noisy, and destructive pets are often targets of animal cruelty. When your dog is outside, keep him or her safely confined and under watch as much as possible. This can help keep your pet safe, as well as discourage your dog from engaging in disruptive behaviors.

Address any concerns of your neighbors in a positive way. If you see any suspicious acts, report it to local authorities.

Pets for Life
February 17, 2008

Canines and Molars
Taking care of your dog or cat's teeth is one of the most
important things you can do for his or her health. February is
National Pet Dental Health Month--read how to keep your best
friend's teeth pearly white and fend off tartar, plaque and
bacteria that can harm your pet's health.

Read more: https://community.hsus.org/ct/hdw6SoK1Wmp5/

February 7, 2008

DogAge Tip of the Week: Stress-Free Pups

If you have recently adopted – or plan to adopt -- a shelter or
rescue dog, some gentle petting may help ease your new pet into home life. An animal shelter can be a stressful environment for a dog. In a study, however, shelter dogs receiving 20 minutes of daily petting and human interaction over the course of 8 weeks experienced significant reductions in their blood levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Petting your new pet frequently may help your dog make a calmer transition to domestic life, too.










As sweethearts far and wide make their Valentine’s Day plans, we’d like to offer some tips to ensure a loving, safe day for all species—Romeos and Rovers alike!
- Many varieties of lilies are highly toxic to cats, so if these are your—or your Valentine’s—flower of choice, make sure your cats can’t get near them. Other potentially poisonous flowers may include tulips, amaryllis, daisies, chrysanthemums and baby’s breath. Check out our Safe Flower Guide for a list of alternatives.
- Candlelit dinners are about as high on the romantic scale as you can get—but please don’t leave the room while flames are still burning. Many pets, particularly kittens, are attracted to the flames and could get burned or singed. Let curious paws find safer things to play with!
- Take extra care if you’ll be serving vino with your dinner—many pets have been known to explore an alcoholic beverage left in a glass. If ingested, this could cause a range of symptoms, from vomiting and diarrhea to metabolic disturbances and even coma.
Click here for the complete ASPCA Guide to a Pet-Friendly Valentine’s Day.



Sun., February 3, 2008

Love Triangle: Helping Your Pet and Your Partner Get Along
By Rebecca Simmons
For five years, Sassy—a feisty poodle-terrier mix—was the center of attention. "Sassy was my baby. I'd had her since I was a teenager and she was a big part of my life," says Betsy McFarland, director of communications for The HSUS's Companion Animals section.

Then Betsy met her husband Mike and, suddenly, Sassy and Mike had to learn to get along.

Full article >

Fri, February 1, 2008
Final Sentencing Hearing Brings Vick Case To A Close
As the January 25 sentencing of dogfighter Oscar E. Allen brings the
Michael Vick case to a close, members of the ASPCA-led canine
evaluations team are revealed.

For details go to >





Mon, January 28, 2008
Unchain My Heart
Many chained dogs across the country will receive very special
valentines this year thanks to Dogs Deserve Better, a group
dedicated to ending the suffering endured by perpetually chained
dogs. Read how you can help chained dogs by making or sponsoring
valentines, mailing coupons for dog food or anonymously
reporting the address of a chained or penned dog who could use
some love.

Read more: https://community.hsus.org/ct/t1w6SoK13zpu/
To the Rescue
Purebred rescue groups are a great option if you're thinking of adopting a purebred dog or cat. Here are a few tips on how you can find a rescue group near you.

Read more: https://community.hsus.org/ct/5dw6SoK13zpW/
Watch the video: https://community.hsus.org/ct/vpw6SoK13zp6/

Sun, January 20, 2008
PETS FOR LIFE Newsletter
Moving On -- Staying Together
As a foreclosure crisis looms nationwide, many pets are facing a grim future when their families leave them behind afterabandoning their foreclosed homes. If you have pets and are facing financial hardship that could lead to relocation, find out about your options for keeping your animals together with the family.
Read more: https://community.hsus.org/ct/i1w6SoK1MzPZ/


December 11, 2007
I am very proud to share some extremely exciting news with you. As I hope many of you saw this morning on NBC’s “Today” show, the ASPCA today unveiled a “forensics first”—the nation’s first-ever “Mobile Animal Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) Unit.”

click on image for full letter

Are you looking for an easy way to show friends and family
members how they can help animals and live cruelty-free? Do you want to learn more about animal rights?

The HBO film I Am an Animal: The Story of Ingrid Newkirk and PETA is nowavailable on DVD. If you missed it when it aired on HBO in November, you can now watch it at your convenience. Just add it to your Netflix queue, rent it from your favorite video store, or purchase the DVD online.

There's a light at the end of every tunnel.

ROBERT COANE 2009 © All rights reserved