<![CDATA[NBC 6 South Florida - South Florida News - Clear the Shelters]]>Copyright 2019http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/localen-usWed, 21 Aug 2019 03:20:33 -0400Wed, 21 Aug 2019 03:20:33 -0400NBC Local Integrated Media<![CDATA[Top Stories]]>Mon, 22 Aug 2016 10:19:11 -0400]]><![CDATA[The Dodo]]>Wed, 14 Aug 2019 13:30:25 -0400]]><![CDATA[Before You Adopt]]>Mon, 22 Aug 2016 10:19:11 -0400]]><![CDATA[Videos]]>Thu, 07 Jun 2018 18:48:24 -0400]]><![CDATA[Amazing Animal Stories]]>Mon, 22 Aug 2016 10:19:11 -0400]]><![CDATA[After You Adopt]]>Mon, 22 Aug 2016 10:19:11 -0400]]><![CDATA[Second Chances]]>Mon, 22 Aug 2016 10:19:11 -0400]]><![CDATA[Full Archive]]>Fri, 10 Aug 2018 12:15:32 -0400]]><![CDATA[Adoptable Pets Near You]]>Fri, 17 Aug 2018 10:33:04 -0400]]><![CDATA[Breaking Down the Pet Adoption Process]]>Fri, 16 Aug 2019 08:51:45 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/214*120/Screen+Shot+2019-08-15+at+3.44.42+PM.png

Thinking about pet adoption but feeling unsure or overwhelmed? The ASPCA's Kelly DiCicco breaks down the process of adopting and acclimating your new pet to your home. ]]>
<![CDATA[Help Clear the Shelters Today! Find a Location Near You]]>Sat, 17 Aug 2019 18:01:53 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-1145445469.jpg

It's time to Clear the Shelters in South Florida.

If you're looking to find a furry member for your family, more than a dozen locations in Miami-Dade, Broward, Monroe and Palm Beach are participating in this year's Clear the Shelters event.

NBC 6 and Telemundo 51 are teaming up with shelters on Saturday, August 17 for the fifth-annual animal adoption drive.

"We are extremely proud to support the arduous work of shelters and rescues as they continue to make a difference in our communities," said Larry Olevitch, President and General Manager at NBC 6. "It's wonderful to see so many pets find loving families through this initiative year after year."

Many of the shelters are waiving or reducing adoption fees to help families find and adopt a new pet. Other services are also free, depending on the location.

Every year, millions of companion animals end up in shelters across the country. And while shelter adoption rates have been steadily rising since 2011, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, approximately 1.5 million animals — 860,000 cats and about 670,000 dogs — are still euthanized each year due to overcrowding.

Last year, more than 100,000 pets were adopted from over 1,200 shelters across the country. Since 2015, Clear the Shelters has helped 256,688 pets find forever homes.



Photo Credit: Hindustan Times via Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Lightning Causes $30K of Damage to New York Animal Shelter]]>Sat, 20 Jul 2019 17:07:44 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/little-shelter-combo.png

Lightning struck the grounds of a Long Island, New York animal shelter, shattering a memorial fountain and shooting the shards across the facility, causing $30,000 of damage, the shelter said Saturday. 

Little Shelter said its industrial air conditioning unit was destroyed, along with a phone system control panel and the central alarm station were destroyed. 

No animals were hurt. 

A thunderstorm on Wednesday night was part of the aftermath of Tropical Storm Barry. A lightning bolt struck a tree at the Huntington shelter at about 10 p.m., then traveled to the fountain, the shelter said. 

The fountain shattered and pieces of it were strewn across the grounds, with one even flying over the cat building, the shelter said. 



Photo Credit: Little Shelter ]]>
<![CDATA[Wee Pups to (Nearly) Take Wing at the Wiener Nationals]]>Thu, 18 Jul 2019 16:14:03 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/214*120/wienernationalslosalamitos1.jpg

What sort of sound or catchphrase or verbal indicator might a Dachshund employ when she is ready to run very, very fast?

"Meep, meep" is already taken, of course. "I'm outta here" conveys the spirit of a Dachshund on the move, but that is something a human might say, not a pup who speaks in bark-ese.

Hmm. This is ruff, er, rough.

We'll just assume that the sweet but fleet Fidos that compete in Wienerschnitzel's famous Wiener Nationals have one thing on their minds: Reaching the end of 50 yards in an impressively quick amount of time.

And plenty of Dachshunds will do just that, on Saturday, July 20 at Los Alamitos Race Course in Cypress, California.

This summertime tradition is very much about doting on Doxies, and meeting other humans who love these hounds, but there's something even stronger at its strong heart: Raising money for the Seal Beach Animal Care Center, which assists in "...finding home for stray animals in the Orange County area."

Lots of people show with their pooches, hoping they can run, but there are rules to know.

Like? A toy or treat may be employed to "entice" your pumpkin to run, but there is no jogging alongside (two people are permitted with each canine participant, one at the starting gate and one waiting at the finish).

Everything to know? Woof woof: It's right here. There's a release waiver, too.

The cost to enter and cheer on these lil' Lassies and Laddies? It's three bucks, and young people 17 and under will be admitted for free.

Los Alamitos calls the Wiener Nationals the venue's "most popular event" of the year, and over 8,500 people attend, per the course.

So arriving early, whether you have a racing pup in tow or not? Smart move.

Dachshunds are famously smart, after all, and if they could talk, they'd certainly advise anyone to head for the Cypress destination well ahead of the first race of the evening, which begins at 6:30 p.m. (gates open at 4:30 p.m.).

Nope, Dachshunds can't fly, but watching all four of their wee feetsies leave the ground at once, as they attempt to reach the finish line first, can make you feel as though you're heart is in flight.

Yes, we said "wee feetsies." Nope, we're not taking it back.



Photo Credit: Wiener Nationals]]>
<![CDATA[Clear the Shelters: Humane Society of Greater Miami's Roxxy!]]>Sat, 18 May 2019 10:52:19 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Clear_the_Shelters_Humane_Society_of_Greater_Miami_Roxxy.jpg

Kelly Dickman from the Humane Society of Greater Miami introduces us to Roxxy, a purebred German Shepherd in need of a home!]]>
<![CDATA[Thousands of Pets Find New Homes During Clear The Shelters]]>Thu, 21 Feb 2019 12:22:24 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/SAMPLE+TIMELINE.00_00_36_21.Still003.jpg

Across the country thousands of animals are finding forever homes. Watch some of these lucky pets as they meet their new families for the very first time.]]>
<![CDATA[Clear the Shelters: The Furry Friends of NBC 6]]>Wed, 15 Aug 2018 12:07:10 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Kelly+Blanco+Dog+Brie+081418.jpgAs NBC and Telemundo stations around the U.S. team up for Clear the Shelters on Aug. 18, NBC 6's anchors and reporters share their favorite pictures of their lovable furry friends.

Photo Credit: Kelly Blanco]]>
<![CDATA[Kittens Left in Cooler Outside South Florida Wildlife Center]]>Tue, 24 Jul 2018 12:29:46 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/072418+kittens+in+cooler+south+florida+wildlife+center.jpg

A group of kittens left in a sealed cooler outside the South Florida Wildlife Center in Fort Lauderdale are being nursed back to health.

Officials with the center say the cooler containing five kittens was left outside the entry gate of the facility on Southwest 4th Avenue on Saturday, as temperatures surpassed 90 degrees.

Staff members found the kittens panting, shaking, highly agitated and dehydrated with high temperatures. Medical staff are still working to rehabilitate the kittens, which include four males and one female.

"There is no excuse for people leaving defenseless animals in tightly-sealed boxes or tethered in the burning sun, with no regard, or at least, no understanding, of the impact the heat, stress and lack or air flow has on the animals," Debra Parsons-Drake, the center's executive director, said in a statement.



Photo Credit: South Florida Wildlife Center]]>
<![CDATA[WATCH: Madrid Police Dog 'Performs' CPR on Partner]]>Tue, 26 Jun 2018 10:28:49 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/214*120/20180626_cpr_dog_SOCIAL.gif

Poncho is ready to save a life! Madrid's municipal police department shared a video of K-9 Poncho "performing" CPR on his human partner as a way to promote adoption. ]]>
<![CDATA[Clear The Shelters 2017 at Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League]]>Sat, 19 Aug 2017 16:26:07 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/081917+cts+2017+peggy+adams+west+palm+beach.jpg

Photo Credit: NBC 6]]>
<![CDATA[Miami Beach Family Adopts Puppy After 'Foster Fail']]>Sun, 20 Aug 2017 00:11:40 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/081917+tonia+sewell+michael+yimer+and+viper.jpg

Tonia Sewell and her boyfriend thought they were only going foster a pointer-mix puppy for a few days - that was until Saturday's Clear the Shelters event at the Humane Society of Greater Miami.

"It was the dream puppy, it was just meant to be," Sewell said Saturday morning. "The biggest successful foster fail."

When the Miami Beach couple had finished fostering kittens they had rescued, they thought they needed a break, but told the Humane Society of Greater Miami that they would be happy to foster dogs in the future.

Sewell and her boyfriend, Michael Yimer, were asked if they would take in a puppy leading up to the Clear the Shelters event

"We fostered him for a week. He got along with our cats and that was it," Sewell said.

Sewell said they brought the puppy back for the event but decided to keep him. And the pup will have a few siblings waiting for him at home: Sewell and her boyfriend already have three cats.

"We brought him back for the event, which we think is a wonderful, wonderful program," she said. "He’s going to have a happy home. He’s going to have cat siblings."

Sewell said it was her boyfriend's dream since he was a little boy to have a dog and name him after a character from one of his favorite movies, "Top Gun." The dog will be named Viper.

"Thank you again to NBC and Telemundo for sponsoring such an important and necessary event," Sewell said.



Photo Credit: Tonia Sewell]]>
<![CDATA[Clear the Shelters 2017 at the Florida Keys SPCA]]>Sat, 19 Aug 2017 16:42:33 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/081917+florida+keys+clear+the+shelters+2017.jpg]]><![CDATA[Clear the Shelters 2017 at Humane Society of Greater Miami]]>Sat, 19 Aug 2017 15:30:13 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/081917+humane+society+greater+miami+clear+the+shelters.jpg]]><![CDATA[Clear The Shelters 2017 at Broward County Animal Care]]>Sat, 19 Aug 2017 17:30:12 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Cat-Eclipse.+Owner-Sydney+and+Lore+Caption-+In+honor+of+the+solar+Eclipse+were+naming+our+kitty+Eclipse--Syndey+new.+.jpg]]><![CDATA[Clear the Shelters 2017 at Miami-Dade Animal Services]]>Sat, 19 Aug 2017 17:57:54 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/081917+Kelly+Blanco+Clear+The+Shelters+NBC+6.jpg]]><![CDATA[Hundreds of Pets Find New Homes During Clear the Shelters]]>Thu, 24 Aug 2017 18:15:30 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/081917+humane+society+greater+miami+clear+the+shelters+new.jpg

Hundreds of pets found forever homes during Saturday's Clear the Shelters event in South Florida.

Seven shelters in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach and Monroe participated in NBC 6 and Telemundo 51's event, which is part of an annual national campaign to find forever homes for animals in need.

All seven shelters waived adoption fees to help families find and adopt a new pet. Other services were also free, depending on the location.

Nearly 1,600 animals were adopted in South Florida in the days leading up to Saturday's big event. More than 340 more were adopted Saturday.

For a map of participating shelters and rescues near you, click here.

From older dogs to kittens to rabbits to iguanas, the NBC- and Telemundo-owned stations' Clear the Shelters pet adoption campaign has inspired local communities to take action and open their homes to pets in need.

During last year's one-day event, around 800 pets found homes in South Florida, and there have been more than 1,200 local adoptions since the event began in 2015. More than 70,000 pet adoptions have been completed nationwide since 2015.

"Last year’s Clear the Shelters surpassed our wildest expectations,” said Laurie Hoffman, Executive Director at the Humane Society of Greater Miami. "Seeing pets who have been living at our Soffer and Fine Adoption Center for months – even years – finally have a chance to walk out with a family who will love them forever is an indescribable feeling. We are thrilled to partner with NBC 6 and Telemundo 51 to make this year’s Clear the Shelters another remarkable day for our local community!"

Here are the locations and details for each shelter:

Miami-Dade County Animal Services Pet Adoption and Protection Center

3599 NW 79th Avenue, Doral

Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Adoptions are free for all pets, including puppies. Pet adoptions include spay/neuter surgery, microchip, de-worming, age-appropriate vaccinations and a license tag.

Humane Society of Greater Miami

16101 West Dixie Highway, North Miami Beach

Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The Humane Society of Greater Miami will offer waived pet adoption fees to help families find and adopt a new pet.

Broward County Animal Care and Adoption Division

2400 Southwest 42nd Street, Fort Lauderdale

Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

All adoption fees for dogs and cats will be waived. In addition, the $20 non-refundable deposit to hold a lost/stray pet also will be waived during the one-day event.

Abandoned Pet Rescue Fort Lauderdale

1137 Northeast 9th Avenue, Fort Lauderdale

Hours: Noon to 5:30 p.m.

Adoption fees will be waived Saturday and all other APR adoption guidelines will be in effect. 


Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League

3100/3200 North Military Trail, West Palm Beach

Hours: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

In addition to free adoptions, there will be free Science Diet starter kits and 30-day petfirst insurance to ALL adopters, free basic training and socialization class for dogs and puppies, free Scenthound “Clean Start” packages for adopted dogs ($35.00 value). Palm Beach County residents are required to purchase a rabies tag.

Florida Keys SPCA in Marathon and Key West

5230 College Road, Key West and 10550 Aviation Boulevard, Marathon

Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Adoption fees will be completely waived, but current adoption procedures and policies still apply. There will also be games, kids activities, a face painter, door prizes, food, a Kiss-A-Bull booth and fun for the whole family.

For more local information about the campaign, tips and success stories, visit nbc6.com/cleartheshelters. You can also follow the effort on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram by using the hashtags #ClearTheShelters and #LoveMyPet. To access information in Spanish, visit DesocuparLosAlbergues.com and follow #DesocuparLosAlbergues and #AmoAMiMascota.


Clear the Shelters is an initiative spearheaded by NBCUniversal Owned Television Stations, a division of NBCUniversal.



Photo Credit: NBC 6
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<![CDATA[Clear The Shelters: Here's Where NBC 6 Will Be During Event]]>Fri, 18 Aug 2017 17:58:45 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*181/Bellwin+Hilo+the+dog.jpg

Clear The Shelters has arrived! Here are the animal shelters across South Florida where you'll find NBC 6 anchors, reporters and meteorologists.

Miami Dade Animal Services

Kelly Blanco

Humane Society of Greater Miami


Ryan Phillips

Jamie Guirola

Broward Animal Care and Adoption

Sheli Muniz

Eric Harryman

Alina Machado

Adam Berg

Abandoned Pet Rescue

Erika Glover

Marissa Bagg



Photo Credit: Mike Bellwin
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<![CDATA[Why Are There So Many Big Dogs In South Florida Shelters?]]>Fri, 18 Aug 2017 18:00:42 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/181*120/9b3fbe169b8d43459dd9aa8fb29b13c6.JPG.jpg

There’s a big problem at animal shelters across South Florida – literally.

Larger dogs, like pit bulls, pit bull mixes and German Shepherds, often struggle to find pet owners, said Lisa Mendheim of Broward County Animal Rescue. Many people are wary of adopting bigger canines due to negative stereotypes about the creatures and the restrictions many condos and apartment buildings place on them. 

Roughly 50 to 70 percent of dogs at Broward County Animal Rescue are considered large, Mendheim said. They also tend to stay at the shelter for longer periods of time.

In several cases, these dogs -- which also include rottweilers -- are brought to animal shelters for reasons outside of their control.

“Many of these pets end up at shelter doors because of circumstances,” said Mendheim. “We have people crying here because they had to surrender their pet.”

Pet owners are often forced to part ways with their large dogs because of an upcoming move to an apartment or condo that has size restrictions. A lot of developments in South Florida don’t allow for dogs that weigh more than 40 pounds.

The issue spans to other parts of South Florida, like Miami-Dade County. Jossie Aguirre, of the Humane Society of Greater Miami, echoes Mendheim’s message.

The ban on pit bulls in Miami-Dade County presents an additional challenge. Mendheim said a large portion of dogs at Broward County Animal Rescue are pit bulls, due to the ban in Miami-Dade. If someone in Miami-Dade owns or keeps a pit bull, they will face a $500 fine and the animal will be court-ordered to location outside of the county. 

There are other reasons people opt to adopt smaller dogs – such as financial issues or having small children around – but condo association requirements seem to be the main reason why people stray away, Mendheim said.

“They’re limited by the HCA or condo association,” she said. “That combined with preconceived notions about pit bulls and larger dogs...it is challenging.”

If you want a new pet and are interested and able to adopt a larger dog, visit nbc6.com/cleartheshelters for information on our adoption initiative.




Photo Credit: Miranda and Ariel]]>
<![CDATA[Dishes For Dogs in Miami: 'Human Tested. Canine Approved']]>Fri, 18 Aug 2017 13:27:01 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Dishes+For+Dogs+Miami+Restaurant.jpg

Shannon Suarez purchased a bag of Dishes For Dogs treats about a year and a half ago at a local farmer’s market but at the time hadn’t considered the store’s other food options.

Each week, she would cook chicken and turkey mixed with vegetables for her dog. But then Suarez had a baby and lacked the time to cook.

Additional research brought her back to Dishes For Dogs, the Wynwood-based dog food manufacturer that uses only USDA-certified ingredients to create dog food. The store was established to provide high-quality food options for owners such as Suarez.

“Through our own experience cooking for our own dogs, we found out it’s expensive, time consuming and difficult to do correctly,” Mason Fox, one of the store’s co-founders, said. “We saw a need for a business.”

With the guidance of Dr. Justin Shmalberg, a veterinary nutritionist, Fox and the staff create recipes for different dogs’ dietary needs. The store sells a basil beef mix with peas, pearls and pears and a chicken and rice mix, among other things.

The foods are available in 8 ounce, 16 ounce, 32 ounce and 5 pound servings. Prices range from $4 to about $44, depending on the size and type of food.

Suarez said her dogs eat the food every day as part of the store’s subscription service and that she doesn’t mind paying for the quality of food it provides.

“I am the biggest fan of Dishes for Dogs,” Suarez said. “I don’t give anything to my baby that’s processed. Why would you give your dog something processed? The convenience of it is amazing.”

Because each recipe uses USDA-approved ingredients, the staff tastes the food after it’s made. That’s how it adopted the slogan “Human Tested. Canine Approved.”

Fox said that the store’s food could be an ideal alternative for dogs who might not eat dry food. The food, which is also being sold at Calusa Veterinary Center in Boca Raton and the Miami Beach Animal Wellness Center, can improve digestion and help dogs maintain a healthy immune system.

Dishes for Dogs currently only offers food for dogs, but Fox said the store plans to begin selling cat food in the future.

But for now, the store has proved to be convenient for dog owners like Suarez.

“It saves me a ton of time and a lot of money,” Suarez said. “I love what they’re doing.”

]]>
<![CDATA[Here Are 10 South Florida Dog Parks You Can Explore]]>Thu, 17 Aug 2017 11:55:41 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/murphy+white+rock+dog+park.jpg

Looking for something to do with your new forever friend? Consider taking your dog to one of South Florida's many dog parks!

Use the interactive map below or click here to find the one closest to you.

Dog Park at Haulover Park: The dog park at Haulover Park features both a park and a beach for you and your dog. The park is open between 8 a.m. and sunset Monday through Sunday and includes specific areas for small and large dogs. There is a $2 fee for each vehicle. Dogs are also allowed to explore the beach between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. as long as they are on a leash.

Perrine Wayside Dog Park: The Perrine Wayside Dog Park is a three-acre facility that features a lake where dogs can cool off. Water fountains for pets are also available. The facility is open from sunrise until sunset.

Amelia Earhart Dog Park: Amelia Earhart Dog Park is a five-acre park for both small and large dogs. The park is open between 8 a.m. and sunset and includes separate areas for different sized animals. There is no charge to park during the week, though there is a parking cost during the weekend.

Dog Park at West Kendall District Park: The Dog Park at West Kendall District Park features separate areas for large and small dogs and has specific equipment for dogs to play with. There are tire jumps and a paws table, according to the park’s website, and the park includes drinking stations for dogs. The park is open Monday through Sunday from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m.  

Hobie Island Beach Park: Hobie Island Beach Park gives your dog the opportunity to play in the sand or explore in the shallow water. Parking is free, and there are concession stands available.

Dog Swim and Bark Park at Snyder Park: The Dog Swim and Bark Park at Snyder Park features a dog park and a lake for dogs to swim in. The dog park is fenced-in, and parking is free Monday through Friday. Both the swimming lake and bark park are open between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., but the lake isn’t open on the first Tuesday and Wednesday of each month.

Oakridge Dog Park: The Oakridge Dog Park includes an area for owners to play with their dogs and a walking path that requires dogs to be on leashes. The facility is open between dawn and dusk. Daily passes and six-month passes are available to be purchased. Prices vary based on city residence.

Johnson Street Dog Park: The Johnson Street Dog Park has different areas for dogs of varying sizes and also features obstacles for dogs to use. It also includes a specific area to wash dogs and has benches for dog owners.

Happy Tails Dog Park at Seminole Park:Happy Tails Dog Park at Seminole Park includes a specific area for large and smaller dogs and an exercise area. Dogs are allowed to roam the park without a leash but have to be on a leash upon entry. The park is open from 7 a.m. until dusk every day excluding Wednesdays, when the facility is open between noon and dusk.

Barkham Dog Park at Markham Park: The Barkham Dog Park at Markham Park features walking or jogging paths, dog water fountains and a washing station. The park’s surface includes Bermuda sod, and the facility has separate areas for large and small dogs. A daily pass is $5, and an annual pass is $25. Proof of vaccinations is required.



Photo Credit: Kevin Young
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<![CDATA[Things to Consider Before Bringing a Pet Home]]>Wed, 16 Aug 2017 18:12:40 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*120/Doc+and+Vlad.jpg

On Saturday August 19th, NBC 6 and Telemundo 51 will be joining forces with animal shelters throughout South Florida. The goal of #ClearTheShelters is to find loving, forever homes for as many of our community’s homeless pets as possible.

If you’ve been thinking about adding a pet to your family, now is a great time to do so. But before you visit a participating shelter, it’s wise to think about what type of pet fits your lifestyle. We’ve got a few days to go between now and the big day, so let’s get started!

Before you start thinking about bringing home a pet, find out for certain if any restrictions on pet ownership apply to your living situation. Many rentals throughout South Florida do not allow pets at all, while others only allow cats and small-breed dogs. Others still may allow any size of dog, but do not allow certain breeds.

If you you own your home, you may face limitations as well. Many homeowner’s associations do not allow outdoor cats, or may only allow dogs over 20 or 40 pounds. HOA’s can and often do, ban certain breeds; before you head to the shelter, get some guidance on this as well.

Finally, place a call to the company that handles your homeowner’s insurance. While the most the most recent, comprehensive, peer-reviewed studies prove otherwise, most insurance companies continue to do business based on the false assumption that aggression is linked to breed. Despite howls of protest from animal care professionals, it is not unusual for insurance companies to deny or limit coverage to homeowners who live with bull breeds, German Shepherds, Chow Chows, Siberian Huskies, Doberman Pinschers, mastiffs, as well as many others. These controversial practices are hotly debated, yet the sad truth of the matter is that many animals find themselves in shelters because their owners were unaware of pre-existing restrictions that limited their choice of pets.

The next step is the family meeting. This should include everyone in the household, including children. Even children who are too young to help care for a pet must be taught that animals are living things to be treated with respect. Chasing, hugging, kissing, grabbing, pulling, cornering, teasing - these normal childhood behaviors can be frightening for pets, and can put children at risk for being bitten or scratched.

Consider the allergies of family members and frequent visitors. Make sure everyone in the household is on the same page, and that everyone’s input is carefully considered. Don’t blindside a family member who is not on board by giving them the pet as a gift, or by using the children’s pleas as a form of leverage. Allergies, injuries to children, and family conflict related to the pet are all-too-common reasons cited by owners who surrender their pets to shelters.

Next, decide if you would like a dog or a cat. If you work long hours, travel a lot, or have an erratic schedule, a dog may not be a wise choice. Dogs are highly social, and require physical and mental exercise to keep them healthy and well-behaved. Since they answer nature’s call outdoors, regularly scheduled meal times and walks are a must.

If your schedule does not allow for this, consider a cat or kitten. Better yet, consider two cats or kittens! They will always have someone to play with and to keep them company when your hectic life takes over. Additionally, the sight of two kittens playing is quite possibly the best form of stress relief known to man.

The subject of kittens leads us to the next decision you should make before your trip. Do you want to adopt a youngster or an adult? The upside of adopting puppies or kittens is obvious - they’re adorable, and a heck of a lot of fun! But make no mistake - this stage is a lot of work. This is especially true of puppies. Between chewing, crying, housebreaking mistakes, and garden-variety mayhem, a puppy can run you ragged. And just when you think your puppy is growing up, the adolescent phase begins.

Like human teenagers, adolescent dogs can be willful, rebellious, and defiant. Our younger dog, Zohan, was an easy puppy. His adolescence, however, was a nightmare. This phase requires patience, consistency, and a cool head. If that doesn’t sound like fun, be honest with yourself and adopt an adult. You’ll be in good company. Many of my clients have adopted adult dogs after deciding they were "done" raising puppies!

If you’ve decided on a dog or a puppy, you’ll need to do a quick lifestyle assessment. The best way to do this is to ask yourself two questions: what do I want to do with my dog, and how much time can I devote to a dog? This is where the size of a dog becomes important, as well as a dog’s drive.

If you have your heart set on a purpose-bred dog, set aside the idea of breed and think about drive instead. A high drive dog requires not just physical exercise, but mental exercise as well. These dogs excel in agility, trick training and nose work. They are the perfect companion for active individuals, and are great partners for runners and cyclists. If this sounds like fun, look for a high drive dog with enough size and stamina to keep up with you. But be warned - these dogs don’t just enjoy being active. They need to be active. Left to their own devices, these dogs can become fearful, reactive or destructive. They need a job, and if you do not give them a job, they will simply choose one on their own. Such choices may include eating socks, chewing through drywall, barking incessantly or lunging.

High drive dogs come in all shapes and sizes, but generally speaking, a larger high drive dog will require more exercise than a smaller one. If you want a dog that is perfectly happy to sleep at your feet all day, you’ll want to look for a low drive dog. Most dogs fall into the medium drive category, which is what many adopters want. A medium drive dog enjoys playing and being active, but is perfectly happy to power down at the end of a busy day. They love running around playing fetch with the kids, but will wait patiently while they first finish their homework. I’ll talk more about assessing the temperament and drive of shelter dogs in my next article. If you’re still inclined toward a particular breed, bear in mind that at any given time, nearly 30 percent of shelter dogs are pure-breeds.

But for now, do some homework of your own and spend the next few days asking yourself the questions posed above. If you know what you’re looking for in a four-legged soulmate, you’ll be far more likely to find the perfect match on August 19th!

Dr. Kupkee is the lead practitioner at Sabal Chase Animal Clinic.

Do you have a question for Dr. Kupkee? Send him an email by clicking here.

Check out these special deals and discounts exclusively for NBC6.com fans!

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<![CDATA[Dog Training Is More About Teaching People, Trainer Says]]>https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/206*120/pet+training.jpg

When it comes to training canines, one South Florida-based dog trainer says it's less about teaching the dog and more about focusing on the pet parent.

Holly Blakney is a trainer at Dog Training Academy of South Florida, which offers obedience, agility, trick and therapy dog classes. She says most of her clients attend classes with specific requests, such as teaching the dog to respond to a command like "sit."

However, if dog owners aren’t planning to use commands daily, it might not be worth teaching them, Blakney said. She recommends using training to teach the dog everyday skills.

"When they’re coming in, we want to make sure we’re training the people to train the dogs," Blakney said. "And make sure they know how to communicate with the dog."

Blakney says dogs can be trained by their owners at home, though she notes that its helpful to implement some variation of training because of the socialization element of formal classes.

She has experience working with shelter dogs and suggested that some dogs that end up in shelters are there due to behavioral issues caused by inadequate training.

"Part of the reason a lot of dogs might end up in a shelter is because people are having a hard time living with the dog," Blakney said. "We work on obedience, but I really want to teach them how to live with the dog."

Shelters are among the best places to pick new dogs, Blakney said, because you get a sense of the dog’s actual personality. And that can be helpful when it comes to training.

She also says there is no "best time" to start training your dog. Canines are able to learn new skills throughout their lives.

Nonetheless, Blakney recommends being patient when picking a shelter pet. Selecting a dog with a personality that meets specific wants and needs will prove to be beneficial as the dog develops new habits, she said.

"If you don’t get those butterflies in your stomach when you meet a dog, it’s OK," Blakney said. "You don’t have to feel bad and take a dog to take a dog. Find something that’s going to match your personality and that you can work with."



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[People Pet Vet Talks Clear the Shelters]]>Wed, 09 Aug 2017 17:07:34 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Talk+Stoop+Clear+the+Shelters.jpg.jpeg

People magazine Editor-in-Chief Jess Cagle and celebrity pet vet Evan Antin stop by “Talk Stoop” to chat with Cat Greenleaf about the effort to “Clear the Shelters” on Aug. 19.

Dr. Antin’s biggest piece of advice for those planning on adopting a cat or dog: “Going to a local rescue or shelter and visiting with the dogs, and realizing whether or not this is a good move for you,” he says.]]>
<![CDATA[How to Bathe Your Dog]]>Thu, 07 Jun 2018 19:24:45 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Screen-Shot-2017-08-05-at-8.25.58-PM.jpg

Is your pup stinky? Watch Ripley the Chocolate Lab get a bath at Bideawee, a no-kill animal rescue in New York City, and see how you can safely bathe your own canine.]]>
<![CDATA[Happy Dogust]]>Tue, 01 Aug 2017 22:40:45 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Happy_Dogust.jpg

NBC 6's Ari Odzer reports.]]>
<![CDATA[How to Keep Your Pet Cool This Summer]]>https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/179*120/072517.jpg

Summertime means fun, sun and lots of outdoor activities. But higher temperatures also mean higher risks of heatstroke and dehydration for our furry companions.

Dr. Ian Kupkee, a veterinarian at Sabal Chase Animal Clinic in Kendall, Florida, sees about a half dozen pets that suffer from heatstroke each summer. He says pets that are left in hot cars, garages or even screened porches are susceptible to heatstroke. 

“Pets who are left in hot cars are the victims who usually make the most dramatic headlines, but the cases we see are usually the ones where pet owners are caught unaware,” Kupkee said, adding that home garages can easily reach temperatures in the mid-90s during the day.

“Unless the garage is air-conditioned, this is not a safe place for a pet,” he said. “The same goes for screened porches. They are simply too hot.”

When it comes to protecting your furry friend from the sweltering heat, there are a number of steps pet owners can take. Here are some tips to prevent heat exhaustion and keep your pet cool.

Take your pet for walks during the cooler hours of the day
According to Dr. Kupkee, walks and intense playtimes should happen early in the morning or after sunset.

Check the temperature of the pavement
If the concrete is too hot for your hands, it’s also too hot for your dog's paws, Dr. Kupkee says. As a precaution, place water on the pads of your dog’s feet when going for walks in the early morning or late evening.

Keep a kiddie pool in the backyard
Filling a kiddie pool with a few inches of water can help keep your pet cool while they are playing outside.

Apply sunscreen
Believe it or not, pets get sunburns too, especially those with short or light hair coat. Apply sunblock on your dog's nose, ears, bellie and anywhere else on their bodies where there is less hair. Ask your vet about products suitable for your pet.

Know the risk factors
Pugs, English bulldogs, Shih-Tzus and other “smush-faced” breeds -- also known as Brachycephalic pets -- are at high risk of heatstroke, according to Dr. Kupkee. The throats and breathing passages of these animals are flatter and smaller, making it more difficult for them to inhale oxygen. Cats in this category include Persian, Burmese and Himalayan felines. If your pet falls under the Brachycephalic category, take extra precautions to make sure they stay cool.

Smaller dogs -- like Dachshunds and toy breeds -- are also a common victim of heatstroke, Dr. Kupkee says. These short legged dogs tend to be closer to the ground and will feel the heat of the pavement 10-40 degrees higher than the ambient temperature.

Take extra precautions for pets with health issues
Overweight, obese or elderly dogs are less able to handle the heat than other dogs, Dr. Kupkee says. Dogs who suffer from heart problems are also at risk.

Carry enough water for you and your pet
Hydrate your pet often during the summer months and when you’re out for walks or playtime.

Be aware of the signs and symptoms
Panting excessively is a common symptom of heat exhaustion. Other symptoms include dizziness, weakness, seizures, lethargy or diarrhea. If your pet is suffering from heat exhaustion, their gums and tongue may also appear to be bright red. Take your pet to the veterinarian or an emergency veterinary clinic if they show any of these signs or symptoms.



Photo Credit: Craig Jones/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Abandoned Puppy Found in Airport Bathroom With Note]]>Mon, 24 Jul 2017 13:20:15 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Chewy+Abandoned+Puppy.jpg

A miniature Chihuahua was left inside a Las Vegas airport bathroom along with a heartbreaking letter from the puppy's owner.

In the handwritten note, Chewy's owner reveals she's a victim of domestic violence and was escaping her "abusive boyfriend," but couldn't afford the airfare for her 3-month-old dog.

"She didn’t want to leave me with all her heart but she has NO other option. My ex-boyfriend kicked my dog when we were fighting and he has a big knot on his head. He probably needs a vet," the note, which was posted on the Connor and Millie's Dog Rescue (CMRD) Facebook page, said. "I love Chewy sooo much – please love and take care of him.”


Since sharing Chewy's story on Facebook, CMDR says there has been “tremendous interest” in the pooch. The Las Vegas-based rescue center said it reviewing all of the interest forms before it selects a new home for Chewy.

"However, there is but 1 Chewy and he can go but to 1 home. Please consider the hundreds if not thousands of "Chewys" loaded with love that are desperately seeking homes in shelters which are at max capacity, rescues are full! Please consider adopting another wonderful companion in his honor!" the shelter added.



Photo Credit: Connor and Millie's Dog Rescue
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Special Needs Corgis Ready for Their Closeups]]>Fri, 14 Jul 2017 15:17:00 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/180*120/DSC_9647_Panda.jpgEach corgi in the series has either a behavioral, neurological or other medical need.

Photo Credit: Casey Christopher]]>
<![CDATA[Rescued Miniature Horses to Provide Therapy for Wounded Veterans]]>Fri, 07 Jul 2017 13:33:36 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Horse_Therapy_Helps_Wounded_Veterans.jpg

A riding center in Ramona is bringing together miniature horses saved from slaughter and veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder(PTSD) in a program that helps heal all involved.

The Cornerstone Therapeutic Riding Center adopted two miniature horses on Thursday, and will use them in its program Operation Saddle Up, which provides therapy to wounded service members and veterans suffering from PTSD, according the center.

The miniature horses were rescued from slaughter in a Texas auction house by P.A.W. 4 The Foundation, an animal rescue organization founded by Charlotte Olhausen. 

According to Cornerstone, the horse therapy provided through Operation Saddle Up has brought an 85 percent decrease in suicidal thoughts, 75 percent decrease in PTSD and 90 percent decrease in anxiety for those veterans enrolled in their program.

In addition to helping service members, Cornerstone said the horses will be used to help children with special needs and serve as program ambassadors throughout the community once they are trained.

]]>
<![CDATA[Retriever Fever: America's Most Popular Dogs, in Photos]]>Thu, 06 Jul 2017 22:55:37 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/178*120/1GettyImages-519107508_master.jpgThe Labrador retriever is America's best best friend, according to the American Kennel Club. This gallery features "aw"-inducing photos of the top 10 most popular dog breeds in America, as judged by the AKC.

Photo Credit: Sanjeev Verma/Hindustan Times via Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[ALS Treatment for Dogs Could Benefit Human Patients]]>Thu, 06 Jul 2017 12:46:47 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/ALS+Dog+1.JPG

Despite the increased awareness of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or Lou Gehrig's disease, few people know that a similar disease affects our canine companions. 

Degenerative myelopathy is a disease similar to ALS that causes progressive paralysis in older dogs. Both neurodegenerative diseases are fatal and there is no cure. 

As in humans with ALS, dogs with degenerative myelopathy eventually die when the respiratory system stops working, but often pets are euthanized before. 

But researchers at the University of Massachusetts partnered with the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University in Grafton, Massachusetts, to test a new drug therapy in dogs that they hope could one day benefit human patients with ALS. 

Dogs participating in the trial, which began in December 2016, undergo tests and are checked every three months to assess their neurological and motor functions. According to Tufts, four dogs are currently in the pilot study. So far, the therapy appears safe in pets, but researchers say it's too early to determine whether it will stop the disease or reverse it.

"Does it work? That’s the question I wake up and go to bed with every day," said Robert H. Brown Jr., a UMass Medical School neurologist and one of the world’s foremost experts on ALS.

The failure rate with clinical trials for any drug is very high.

"Approximately only 10 percent of drugs that make their way into people is actually approved by the FDA for use in humans," said Dr. Cheryl London with Cummings School.

One reason is that tests are done on mice, which are given the disease or genetically engineered. London says because of these factors, the disease in mice don't accurately represent what researchers see in humans. But diseases in dog, cats and even horses do. Researchers also say because these animals are much closer in makeup to humans than mice, the likelihood of success is greater.

Greta, a 9-year-old boxer, is one of the dogs participating in the clinical trial of the drug therapy and her owner hopes it could stop her disease from getting worse. 

"Her contributing to the research was really important," Greta's owner said. "That it links to human ALS and research in that area, it just seemed like Greta could help dogs and humans, both."

________________

If your dog has generative myelopathy and you would like your dog to take part in this study, click here to see if it meets the criteria.



Photo Credit: NBC Boston]]>
<![CDATA[PAWmicon: Comic Canines in Cosplay]]>Thu, 20 Jul 2017 13:04:11 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/180*120/pawmicon_19.jpgCoo over woofers dressed as superheroes, and villains, too, from movies and comic books, at a sweet San Diego fundraiser.

Photo Credit: The Helen Woodward Animal Center]]>
<![CDATA[Kristen Bell, Charlize Theron Gush Over Their Rescue Dogs]]>Thu, 06 Jul 2017 22:08:45 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/KristenBell-CharlizeTheron.jpg

As the Annenberg Foundation prepares to celebrate the opening of the Wallis Annenberg PetSpace in Playa Vista, California, some of Hollywood's most famous dog owners are sharing their positive pet stories with fans.

In a new video posted on YouTube, Kristen Bell reintroduces viewers to her dog Lola, who she rescued at a shelter 13 years ago.

"I wanted a dog for my birthday, which was like my first dog as an adult and she was just staring at me from inside her kennel and I felt this instant connection and the woman at the pound said, 'You may not want that dog. She's been returned by two other families,'" the actress recalled. "And I said, 'Nope. That's my dog. That's the dog I want.'"

The rest, as they like to say in Hollywood, is history.

Stars Who Adopted Pets

Charlize Theron also stars in the video with her two beloved pooches Johnny and Berkley. The Hollywood actress couldn't help but emphasize how much pets can become part of the family.

"My children absolutely adore them and they adore my children and I cannot imagine my family without them," Theron shared. "What's better than opening your door and two friendly faces are just happy to see you no matter what? That's what Berkley and Johnny do."

She added, "They're strays, they look weird but they're so beautiful. You don't need a purebred dog."

The Wallis Annenberg PetSpace is described as a community service and pet adoption center that includes veterinary care and animal education.

In fact, the center also focuses on "the celebration and study of the relationship between people and their pets -- and the important and beneficial impact of the human-animal bond."

"Looking out for another living thing is a way of learning how to look out for yourself, learning to have empathy and love and I think that's brilliant for kids," Stephen Moyer shared. "It's a great reminder for us."



Photo Credit: File/AP Photo
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Nearly 1,000 Animals Rescued]]>Wed, 21 Jun 2017 15:17:08 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/NC_rescuedanimals0621_1920x1080.jpg

Nearly 1,000 animals are being cared for after being found in an old moving truck in Fresno, California, Friday. Kendyll Lyons, a kennel worker at Fresno Humane Animal Services, has been working long hours to make sure the hundreds of birds, bunnies, quail and others. A total of 955 animals were rescued, but several have since died.


Photo Credit: KSEE-TV]]>
<![CDATA[Ultramarathon Dog Scores Book and Movie Deals]]>Thu, 06 Jul 2017 22:20:07 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/AP_17165751510592.jpg

Gobi, the stray dog who captured hearts when she adopted her human Dion Leonard during a 155-mile race across China's Gobi desert, will be featured in books and a movie depicting how the two met and bonded.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[34 Dogs Saved From 'Deplorable' Conditions in Calif. Home]]>Sat, 17 Jun 2017 18:28:33 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/6-17-17_Dog_Seizure.jpg

Nearly three dozen dogs were rescued Thursday from woeful conditions in a Scotts Valley home, according to the Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter.

The rescue happened after someone reported that several dogs were suffering from "deplorable and inhumane" treatment at a residence. The animal shelter officers were familiar with the property since there have been similar complaints made in the past, the shelter wrote on Facebook. 

"The conditions were such that [the dogs] needed to be seized," Linda Puzziferro from the Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter said. "They were breeding the dogs, and there were many dogs. The conditions were not good."

With the help of warrants and assistance from the Scotts Valley Police Department, the animal shelter retrieved 34 dogs. Most of the canines were Boston terriers, as well as some Tibetan spaniels and one Chihuahua mix.

The pets were not being treated appropriately and will need to be examined by the veterinarians, according to the shelter.

The dogs' owner struggles with hoarding problems and recently suffered a stroke, a man who lives on the property where the dogs were seized told NBC Bay Area. The man added that he understands there were too many dogs in one location, but claimed the pups were healthy.

The shelter is stretched thin, officials said, and asked for donations.

People looking for more information can find it online.




Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Calif. Couple Accused of Hoarding 180 Yorkies Pleads Guilty]]>Wed, 12 Jul 2017 02:48:23 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Poway-Dogs-RESCUED.jpg

A Poway couple, accused of hoarding more than a hundred Yorkie dogs inside their homes and a restaurant pleaded guilty Monday, confirmed prosecutors.

Christine Calvert, 62, and Mark Vattimo, 73, will be placed on three years of probation at their sentencing on July 11, said prosecutors.

Calvert and Vattimo previously pleaded not guilty in March.

Deputy District Attorney Karra Reedy said it's most important that the defendants get help, in order to make sure this never happens again.

The defendants must undergo counseling and are not allowed to own any pets, as part of their plea agreement. They also will transfer the ownership of a 31-foot motorhome to the Humane Society as restitution in the case, said prosecutors.

After 18 months of probation, Vattimo and Calvert may apply to have their felony convictions reduced to misdemeanors, according to Superior Court Judge Kathleen Lewis.

Back in January, the Humane Society received a report from a concerned veterinarian that suggested the Poway couple was keeping 180 dogs in deplorable conditions. The dogs were kept in dark, unsanitary rooms filled with feces, urine, and mice at the defendants' home.

When Humane Society officials went to the scene, they were prevented from entering the home, said Reedy. After a few days, they were able to come in and 94 dogs were removed from the defendants' home within the next eight hours.

Later, 29 dogs were also seized from a restaurant the couple owned and nearly 50 dogs were taken from a motor home when Calvert was arrested last February in Primm, Nevada, according to prosecutors.

It was unclear why the couple kept so many dogs in terrible conditions, Reedy said. All the animals had health problems, ranging from ear infections to severe matting.

The couple was charged with 10 felony counts, including animal abuse and neglect, and one count of resisting an officer.

The dogs were placed in the care of the San Diego Humane Society. 

More than 1,500 adoption applications were submitted for the Yorkies, prompting the organization to close the adoption process earlier than planned.

Ed. Note: A previous version of this article incorrectly stated the name of a defendant. The article has been corrected. We regret the error.



Photo Credit: San Diego Humane Society]]>
<![CDATA[Stolen Dog Reunited With SoCal Family 7 Year Later]]>Wed, 07 Jun 2017 10:06:59 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/dog-reunion-060617.jpg

Pet microchipping led to a heartwarming reunion Tuesday for a Southern California family and their dog, who finally returned home seven years after she was stolen.

Kona, an 8-year-old pit bull, was dropped off by animal control at Ventura County Animal Services (VCAS) Saturday in Camarillo, where workers scanned her for a microchip implant that led to her owner, Shannon Pratt.

The last time Pratt and her family saw Kona was seven years ago when the then-1-year-old pit bull was stolen from their backyard in Ventura County, according to VCAS. The family has since moved to Bakersfield and Kona's collar was left behind.

Upon receiving the good news from VCAS, Pratt and her daughters drove to Ventura County to pick up Kona.

Tuesday's emotional reunion, which was streamed live on VCAS' Facebook, shows Pratt and her three daughters happy to be reunited with Kona.

"It's just the best feeling when the microchip scanner beeps," said VCAS director Tara Diller. "It means the pet has a microchip, and the chances of reuniting pets with their owners increases exponentially."

Even though a microchip implant dramatically increases the likelihood of locating a pet's owner, the vast majority of lost pets do not have these implants, according to VCAS spokesman Randy Friedman.

This is also true of the lost pets at the Camarillo Animal Shelter. Few animals there have microchips, making it difficult to locate owners and move animals out of the shelter. The Camarillo shelter currently offers shelter to 240 animals, almost 100 animals more than its intended 150-animal capacity. The shelter has been far over capacity since it became a "no-kill" facility in 2014, Friedman said.

Microchip implants are the size of a grain of rice and last a lifetime, making them a "game changer" for lost pets, Friedman added.

Animal services officials especially urge owners to microchip their pets as July 4 nears. Friedman said that having a microchip implant will increase the chance that a pet will be returned if it gets lost after running from fireworks.

VCAS offers microchip implants for $10 at low-cost vaccination clinics that are held at different sites each month. Implants are offered for free for pets that were lost and have been returned to their owners.



Photo Credit: Ventura County Animal Services
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[50 Animals Rescued Following Animal Cruelty Complaint]]>Tue, 06 Jun 2017 14:15:04 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/196*120/NHSPCA+rescue+060117+1+EDIT.jpg

About 50 animals living in overcrowded, filthy conditions were rescued in New Hampshire and relocated to the New Hampshire Society for the Protection of Cruelty to Animals (NHSPCA) in Stratham following an animal cruelty complaint, authorities said.

An NHSPCA spokesman says the animals include two horses, a mother dog and her four puppies, 27 rabbits and 15 guinea pigs.

All will be evaluated by a veterinarian.

The organization believes the dogs are suffering from worms and the horses appear underweight and without proper hoof care. Some of the rabbits and guinea pigs were suffering from urine burns on their paws.

"It is always devastating to see animals that were entrusted to the care of humans and those humans failed to provide it," said Lisa Dennison, the NHSPCA's executive director. "These animals have suffered at the hands of human seeking to make a profit from their offspring."

The NHSPCA says the owners of the animals are cooperating with authorities but are expected to face animal neglect charges. Their information has not been released.

Once the animals have recovered, the NHSPCA said they will be placed in homes.

The agency is seeking donations to help pay for their food, vaccinations and care. To make a donation, go to www.nhspca.org, call 603-772-2921, Ext. 102 or send it by mail to New Hampshire SPCA, PO Box 196, Stratham, NH 03885.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 6 South Florida



Photo Credit: New Hampshire SPCA]]>
<![CDATA[Meet Isis, the Bomb-Sniffing Dog Protecting You]]>Thu, 25 May 2017 12:30:13 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/215*120/052417+isis+the+bomb+sniffing+dog.jpg

ISIS was raised in prison, but she wasn't doing hard time. The bombing-sniffing pooch was trained by female inmates at Florida prison to become a service dog as part of a program called Puppies Behind Bars. NBC 6’s Julia Bagg reports.

Photo Credit: NBC 6]]>
<![CDATA[Service Dog in HS Yearbook]]>Fri, 19 May 2017 23:31:55 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/soldier+campbell+yearbook1.jpg

To see Kathryn Campbell smile, you'd have to look into her past. The once active, talkative little girl started having seizures at the age of ten.

"She has since lost her ability to speak with us, and she doesn't smile very much anymore," said her mother, Kim Campbell. "We have lost that outgoing little girl, and that has been absolutely the most difficult part."

Bringing comfort to the whole family is Kathryn's best friend, Soldier.

"He's a goofball, and he's a big old scaredy cat. He eats socks, which is his absolute worst habit," Kim Campbell said.

Soldier is Kathryn's service dog. Together, they attend Timber Creek High School in Fort Worth. He's by her side constantly — even in the school yearbook.

But his presence is for more than just comfort.

"He can smell the differences in her body before the seizures actually happen," her mother said.

His alerts range from licking to pawing and barking, and they give Kathryn's caregivers an average 45-minute warning before a seizure occurs.

"Every seizure is life-threatening," said Kathryn's nurse, Samantha Stringer.

Stringer said she uses the extra warning time to prepare oxygen and rescue meds.

When she jumps into action, Soldier waits. He's always on alert, and he's always by Kathryn's side—through everything.

As high school freshmen they went to homecoming together—and then prom.

Soldier is an active member of Kathryn's classroom, so when it came to student picture day, Soldier took part.

"There's lots of kids rolling through, it's like, 'Hey! Here's a dog, okay good,'" said photographer Jared Pyfer, who captured Soldier's student ID picture.

Soldier is not only featured in an article with Kathryn in the yearbook, he also has his own picture, alongside the other students.

Because of his name's first letter, S, Kathryn's sister separates them in the row of pictures. But Soldier is close by—just like always.

"I think it commemorates their bond that they have. They get to go through all of this together," student Amanda Barber said.

Soldier is a proud student with a life-saving sense of smell and enough love to give anyone who needs some comfort.

"Every life matters and everyone that walks into this school matters," Stringer said. "Even a dog's life can make an impact of life and death, and I think that's amazing."

"He's a blessing, all the way around," said Kim Campbell said.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Need a Dog Walker? There's an App for That]]>Thu, 06 Jul 2017 22:44:25 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/2017-05-15_0630.png

If you have a dog you have to leave everyday to go to work, you may feel a little guilty? What if your dog needs to go outside? Well, there's an app for that. News4's consumer reporter Susan Hogan shows us how a new app can make your day guilt free.]]>
<![CDATA[Pistons Coach Adopts Animal Shelter's Last Dog]]>Thu, 06 Jul 2017 22:37:33 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/US-MI-Last-Dog-Adopt-CR_1200x675_940425283974.jpg

Detroit Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy and his family have adopted a Labrador retriever mix that was an animal shelter's last remaining dog following a pet adoption day.

Van Gundy, his wife Kim and their teenage daughter picked up Eastwood, a special needs dog, Tuesday at the Little Traverse Bay Humane Society in the northern Michigan city of Harbor Springs.

Eastwood gained national attention last week for being the shelter's last remaining dog following a statewide "Empty the Shelters" free pet adoption day that found homes for nearly 1,600 pets at 66 Michigan shelters.

The friendly pooch was born with an eye defect and a leg deformity that may someday require surgery.]]>
<![CDATA[Duck Shows Up at Man's Home, Refuses to Leave]]>Mon, 08 May 2017 16:12:48 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/NC_duckman0508_1500x845.jpg

A duck showed up at a Florida man's home a few weeks ago -- and he says it still won't leave the property. Lakeland resident Richard Martin says he tries to take the animal to a nearby lake but she always waddles back to his house.]]>
<![CDATA[Cat Survives 15 BB Gun Shots]]>Thu, 11 Oct 2018 02:32:08 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/chance-the-cat-la.jpg

An eight-month-old kitten is recovering after being shot 15 times with a BB gun earlier this week.

The stray feline came in to Nohl Ranch Animal Hospital with multiple puncture wounds, all of them aimed at his head, according to hospital officials. Five BB gun pellets went through the cat's skull; surgeons were able to remove all but one, which was too deeply embedded. 

Hospital workers have named the cat "Chance" because he miraculously survived the attack. Veterinarians said that cats are normally quick to run away once they've been attacked, raising questions about how 15 shots were fired at the kitten. 

"We would think he would have ran, so it's a possibility that he could've been held down or tied down," Dr. Janie Guirguis said. "But we're not sure."

Chance was found hovering under a truck just a few blocks from the Nohl Ranch Animal Hospital in Orange County, California.

Doctors said the shock of the attack left Chance blind, but they're hoping he'll regain his eyesight as he heals.

Chance will continue to recover before Nohl Ranch begins searching for a suitable home.



Photo Credit: KNBC-TV]]>
<![CDATA[Lab Report: Gene Researchers Map Out Dog Family Tree]]>Tue, 25 Apr 2017 21:27:50 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/211*120/gretriever.jpg

Researchers at the National Institutes of Health have come up with the most complete and definitive canine family tree to date, NBC News reported.

They've spent more than 20 years sampling the genes of 161 breeds of dog, sequencing them and comparing them to show how breeds were mixed and matched to make new breeds. The genealogy also gives a rough timeline and geographic map of what came from where.

"It's very subtle variation in small numbers of genes that account for that very large difference in morphology that we see across breeds," said Elaine Ostrander of the National Human Genome Research Institute, part of the NIH.

The goal is to track disease-causing genetic mutations, which often translate to human disease genes, Ostrander said.



Photo Credit: Getty Images (File)]]>
<![CDATA[Match for Mutts? Website Helps People Adopt the Best Dog]]>https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Golden-Retriever-GettyImages-522796697.jpg

There's a new way to find the perfect family dog. 

The founders of the website How I Met My Dog say people usually select a pet based on appearance and breed. But that's barking up the wrong tree. 

How I Met My Dog matches humans and potential pets based on what really matters - personality, lifestyle and behavior. Some are calling it a canine version of eHarmony or Match for mutts. 

People looking for a new dog can fill out a personality profile based on their lifestyle. 

The site then matches them with dogs at shelters or that need new homes that would complement that lifestyle. 

The service has rolled out in the Boston area, and the founders are hoping to go nationally later this year.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 6 South Florida



Photo Credit: Getty Images/Hero Images]]>
<![CDATA[Pet of the Week: Andy]]>Sat, 10 Sep 2016 12:38:33 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/228*120/pet+of+the+week+andy.jpg

Our pet of the week is Andy, a two-month-old Shih Tzu Terrier mix, who is looking for his forever home.

Laurie Wax with Humane Society of Greater Miami stopped by NBC 6 on Saturday with Andy. She said Andy is playful, and easygoing.

Andy would make a great pet for a family with kids or a single person. Andy gets along great with people and plays nicely with other dogs

If you're interested in Andy or other animals up for adoption, contact Humane Society of Greater Miami at (305)-696-0800.

For more animal news or to view other pets up for adoption, visit our All About Animals page.



Photo Credit: NBC6.com]]>
<![CDATA[Clear the Shelters: Kenny]]>Sun, 31 Jul 2016 14:46:00 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/214*120/clear+the+shelters+kenny.jpg

Our pet of the week is Kenny, who is about five to six years of age and is looking for his forever home.

Tracy Calvino with Pooches in Pines stopped by NBC 6 on Saturday with Kenny. She said he is very chill and obedient. He loves to relax and is well-behaved.

Calvino said Kenny is great with others and is fully grown. He'll need to go to a loving home. Kenny loves to be around people.

If you're interested in Kenny, contact Pooches in Pines at (954) 431-2200 or visit their Facebook and Twitter pages for more information.

For more animal news or to view other pets up for adoption, visit our All About Animals page.



Photo Credit: NBC6.com]]>
<![CDATA[Pet of the Week: Balto]]>Sun, 24 Jul 2016 10:53:42 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/pet+of+the+week+balto.jpg

Our pet of the week is Balto, a two-year-old Husky mix, who is looking for his forever home.

Lisa Mendheim with Broward Animal Care stopped by NBC 6 on Sunday with Balto. She said Balto is very active and loving, and friendly.

Balto would make a great pet for a family with an active lifestyle.

If you're interested in Balto or other animals up for adoption, contact Broward Animal Care at (954) 359-1313.

For more animal news, visit our All About Animals section.



Photo Credit: NBC6.com]]>
<![CDATA[Family Set to Adopt One Dog, Leaves With Two]]>Sat, 23 Jul 2016 18:01:40 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/CTSJediSithDogs_1200x675_731049539547.jpgNBC 7's Dagmar Midcap speaks with a San Diego family who went to the San Diego Humane Society during Clear The Shelters on July 23, 2016 with the intentions of adopting one dog, but happily left with two new pets.]]><![CDATA[Clear the Shelters: Pets Adopted Around the Country]]>Sat, 23 Jul 2016 18:53:00 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/180*120/ACCT+Othello+Dog+CTS.JPGThousands of pets have been adopted from hundreds of shelters across the country as part of Clear the Shelters, NBC and Telemundo's nationwide pet adoption initiative. Here are some of the animals that found their forever homes.

Photo Credit: Joseph Kaczmarek]]>
<![CDATA[Clear The Shelters 2016: ADOPTED!]]>Sat, 23 Jul 2016 15:43:35 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/180*120/73e588382af246c98b377e2eb8871ac5.jpg

Click on the links below for photos of the animals adopted at all the participating South Florida shelters during #ClearTheShelters Day 2016.

These will be updated throughout the day, so keep checking back!

Last week, in preparation for Clear The Shelters, I shared my thoughts on South Florida’s alarmingly high shelter pet population.  Additionally. I shared my thoughts on our community’s low spay/neuter compliance rate, and the correlation between that, and the need for what is becoming an annual adoption event.

 

There are many reasons why conscientious pet owners do not spay or neuter their pets.  Some pets are poor candidates for anesthetic procedures, others still may benefit from waiting until adolescence or adulthood before having said procedures performed.  Such animals, however, are the exceptions, rather than the rules.

 

I also detailed whom I was not addressing in my “why do you have an intact pet?” rant, and offered some solutions for pet owners who are genuinely struggling.  In case you missed it, let me go over it again:

 

If your pet is not a candidate for an early spay/neuter procedure due to a legitimate veterinary concern, this next bit is not for you. Carry on, and spay or neuter your pet if and when your veterinarian decides the time is right. Ditto for those of you whose pets are not healthy enough to have surgery.

 

Additionally, if you are a licensed, responsible breeder of healthy, purpose-bred dogs, I am not addressing you either. Ditto for those of you with genetically strong specimens whose bloodlines will truly benefit future generations of the breed. Thanks for not sending me hate mail. Keep up the good work.

 

And once again,  if you would absolutely love to get your pet spayed or neutered, but simply cannot afford to do so, I am not calling you out either. I am no stranger to financial hardship. Trust me, you won’t see any poor shaming here. Click here for a list of organizations that will spay or neuter your pet at a steeply reduced price, or perhaps even for free. http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Low-Cost-Spay-and-Neuter-Clinics-in-Miami-Dade-Broward-Palm-Beach-Monroe-Counties-386355091.html  These organizations are here to help, and would love for you to take advantage of their services.

 

If none of the above reasons apply to your pet, you undoubtedly have a reason for having an intact pet. Chances are, I’ve heard it before; and chances are, it’s bunk. Sadly, these misconceptions have been around for so long, that we tend to assume they are true.  So let’s do a little veterinary “mythbusting” as I share some of the most oft-repeated excuses for spay/neuter non-compliance.

 

“It makes them lazy and boring.”

 

While spaying and neutering will reduce a pet’s sex drive, that’s the only type of drive it affects. They will still retain their play drive, prey drive, activity level, protectiveness, eagerness to please, ability to work, and all the other things you love about them. In fact they will be more focused on the things you love about them because, as my wife so eloquently puts it, they will be thinking with the correct organ! The sex drive of a pet dog or cat can make them extremely unpleasant to live with. They can yowl, escape, fight, roam, and spray foul-smelling urine. Intact dogs are involved in roughly 90% of serious attacks on humans. https://www.avma.org/Advocacy/StateAndLocal/Pages/dogbite-summary.aspx These are the pets who bolt into traffic, dig under fences, destroy property, and make your neighbors hate you. They are often deemed “out of control” and surrendered to shelters - along with the unwanted offspring they produce. Both of our dogs were spayed and neutered before they were five months old. Grendel will swim until she is blue and shivering. Zohan is the Ironman of play. Lazy and boring? See for yourself.

 

Grendel running.jpgZ pool small.jpg

 

“It’s just so unnatural.”

 

So is killing over two million pets via lethal injection every year because there aren’t enough homes for them all. http://www.aspca.org/animal-homelessness/shelter-intake-and-surrender/pet-statistics

 

Cats and dogs are the quintessential genetically modified organisms.  There is no such thing is a free-ranging Schnauzer or an indigenous Golden Retriever. There is nothing natural about them.  Why we suddenly go into “granola mode” with regards to their reproductive organs is utterly beyond me.

 

A colleague of mine sometimes chides his clients by reminding them that rattlesnake venom is 100% natural and organic. In other words, not everything that’s natural is automatically good.

 

A spayed pet has a zero percent chance of developing a life-threatening uterine infection known as pyometra. Ditto for the risk of testicular cancer in neutered pets. The risk of metastatic breast cancer in intact female pets increases drastically with each heat cycle - and let’s not forget, our pets generally have between eight and ten breasts! And in nearly 20 years of practice, I’ve seen just one case of prostatic cancer in a neutered dog. For an intact male, this condition is almost inevitable -  dare I say, a “natural” progression of events.

 

“I really want one of his/her puppies!”

 

Just as every family has it’s black sheep, there is no guarantee the traits you love will be passed to the next generation. Breeding for temperament is something best left to qualified, experienced, professional breeders who know what the heck they are doing. I am nothing like anyone in my family, and I’m convinced my wife was left on her family’s doorstep by the fairy folk. Personality is not always an inherited trait.

 

If you still insist on breeding for “one of the puppies”, I would strongly encourage you to closely examine that sentence. There is a word included therein that saddens the hell out of me, and it should sadden the hell out of you too. Do you see it? Look closely...

 

One.

 

You want one of the puppies. She may have four. Or nine. Or twelve! What will become of the rest of them once you select the pick of the litter?

 

Don’t answer that. I know what you’re thinking. (I’ve been at this a while.) You’re thinking of the friends, coworkers and family members who have told you they would line up for one of Snowflake’s puppies! And yet what people say and what they ultimately do are often two separate things. Life changes quickly, and those surefire homes may be relocated, foreclosed upon, filled up with babies, or occupied by someone else’s surplus puppy.  Guess where that leaves Snowflake’s litter? You guessed it! Your friendly neighborhood shelter.If your friends and family members have puppy-ready homes, great! There are plenty in our shelters. And if we want said shelters to maintain their much-lauded, “no-kill” status, we as individuals must get our own houses in order. No-kill shelters are not sustainable in communities whose residents do not spay and neuter their pets. Period.

 

Folks, we all like to think our pets are special. I am absolutely besotted with mine. But in terms of the pet population’s gene pool, well...they’re not. I love them to pieces, but truth is truth. And if my dogs aren’t special enough to warrant a genetic legacy, chances are, yours aren’t either.

 

Next time, we’ll discuss even more of the reasons we don’t spay and neuter our pets! I’m sorry, did you think I was done? Like I said I’ve been at this a while, and I’ve got some good ones. Manliness, motherhood, miracles, educa

Last week, in preparation for Clear The Shelters, I shared my thoughts on South Florida’s alarmingly high shelter pet population.  Additionally. I shared my thoughts on our community’s low spay/neuter compliance rate, and the correlation between that, and the need for what is becoming an annual adoption event.

 

There are many reasons why conscientious pet owners do not spay or neuter their pets.  Some pets are poor candidates for anesthetic procedures, others still may benefit from waiting until adolescence or adulthood before having said procedures performed.  Such animals, however, are the exceptions, rather than the rules.

 

I also detailed whom I was not addressing in my “why do you have an intact pet?” rant, and offered some solutions for pet owners who are genuinely struggling.  In case you missed it, let me go over it again:

 

If your pet is not a candidate for an early spay/neuter procedure due to a legitimate veterinary concern, this next bit is not for you. Carry on, and spay or neuter your pet if and when your veterinarian decides the time is right. Ditto for those of you whose pets are not healthy enough to have surgery.

 

Additionally, if you are a licensed, responsible breeder of healthy, purpose-bred dogs, I am not addressing you either. Ditto for those of you with genetically strong specimens whose bloodlines will truly benefit future generations of the breed. Thanks for not sending me hate mail. Keep up the good work.

 

And once again,  if you would absolutely love to get your pet spayed or neutered, but simply cannot afford to do so, I am not calling you out either. I am no stranger to financial hardship. Trust me, you won’t see any poor shaming here. Click here for a list of organizations that will spay or neuter your pet at a steeply reduced price, or perhaps even for free. http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Low-Cost-Spay-and-Neuter-Clinics-in-Miami-Dade-Broward-Palm-Beach-Monroe-Counties-386355091.html  These organizations are here to help, and would love for you to take advantage of their services.

 

If none of the above reasons apply to your pet, you undoubtedly have a reason for having an intact pet. Chances are, I’ve heard it before; and chances are, it’s bunk. Sadly, these misconceptions have been around for so long, that we tend to assume they are true.  So let’s do a little veterinary “mythbusting” as I share some of the most oft-repeated excuses for spay/neuter non-compliance.

 

“It makes them lazy and boring.”

 

While spaying and neutering will reduce a pet’s sex drive, that’s the only type of drive it affects. They will still retain their play drive, prey drive, activity level, protectiveness, eagerness to please, ability to work, and all the other things you love about them. In fact they will be more focused on the things you love about them because, as my wife so eloquently puts it, they will be thinking with the correct organ! The sex drive of a pet dog or cat can make them extremely unpleasant to live with. They can yowl, escape, fight, roam, and spray foul-smelling urine. Intact dogs are involved in roughly 90% of serious attacks on humans. https://www.avma.org/Advocacy/StateAndLocal/Pages/dogbite-summary.aspx These are the pets who bolt into traffic, dig under fences, destroy property, and make your neighbors hate you. They are often deemed “out of control” and surrendered to shelters - along with the unwanted offspring they produce. Both of our dogs were spayed and neutered before they were five months old. Grendel will swim until she is blue and shivering. Zohan is the Ironman of play. Lazy and boring? See for yourself.

 

 

 

“It’s just so unnatural.”

 

So is killing over two million pets via lethal injection every year because there aren’t enough homes for them all. http://www.aspca.org/animal-homelessness/shelter-intake-and-surrender/pet-statistics

 

Cats and dogs are the quintessential genetically modified organisms.  There is no such thing is a free-ranging Schnauzer or an indigenous Golden Retriever. There is nothing natural about them.  Why we suddenly go into “granola mode” with regards to their reproductive organs is utterly beyond me.

 

A colleague of mine sometimes chides his clients by reminding them that rattlesnake venom is 100% natural and organic. In other words, not everything that’s natural is automatically good.

 

A spayed pet has a zero percent chance of developing a life-threatening uterine infection known as pyometra. Ditto for the risk of testicular cancer in neutered pets. The risk of metastatic breast cancer in intact female pets increases drastically with each heat cycle - and let’s not forget, our pets generally have between eight and ten breasts! And in nearly 20 years of practice, I’ve seen just one case of prostatic cancer in a neutered dog. For an intact male, this condition is almost inevitable -  dare I say, a “natural” progression of events.

 

“I really want one of his/her puppies!”

 

Just as every family has it’s black sheep, there is no guarantee the traits you love will be passed to the next generation. Breeding for temperament is something best left to qualified, experienced, professional breeders who know what the heck they are doing. I am nothing like anyone in my family, and I’m convinced my wife was left on her family’s doorstep by the fairy folk. Personality is not always an inherited trait.

 

If you still insist on breeding for “one of the puppies”, I would strongly encourage you to closely examine that sentence. There is a word included therein that saddens the hell out of me, and it should sadden the hell out of you too. Do you see it? Look closely...

 

One.

 

You want one of the puppies. She may have four. Or nine. Or twelve! What will become of the rest of them once you select the pick of the litter?

 

Don’t answer that. I know what you’re thinking. (I’ve been at this a while.) You’re thinking of the friends, coworkers and family members who have told you they would line up for one of Snowflake’s puppies! And yet what people say and what they ultimately do are often two separate things. Life changes quickly, and those surefire homes may be relocated, foreclosed upon, filled up with babies, or occupied by someone else’s surplus puppy.  Guess where that leaves Snowflake’s litter? You guessed it! Your friendly neighborhood shelter.If your friends and family members have puppy-ready homes, great! There are plenty in our shelters. And if we want said shelters to maintain their much-lauded, “no-kill” status, we as individuals must get our own houses in order. No-kill shelters are not sustainable in communities whose residents do not spay and neuter their pets. Period.

 

Folks, we all like to think our pets are special. I am absolutely besotted with mine. But in terms of the pet population’s gene pool, well...they’re not. I love them to pieces, but truth is truth. And if my dogs aren’t special enough to warrant a genetic legacy, chances are, yours aren’t either.

 

Next time, we’ll discuss even more of the reasons we don’t spay and neuter our pets! I’m sorry, did you think I was done? Like I said I’ve been at this a while, and I’ve got some good ones. Manliness, motherhood, miracles, educational value...I’ve heard them all. And next time, so will you.

 

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go answer some hate mail…

tional value...I’ve heard them all. And next time, so will you.

 

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go answer some hate mail…



Photo Credit: Ashley Igo
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[2016 Clear The Shelters: Abandoned Pet Rescue]]>Sat, 23 Jul 2016 14:25:24 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*213/abandoned+pets+broward+215.JPGLet's clear the shelters!]]><![CDATA[2016 Clear The Shelters: Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League]]>Sat, 23 Jul 2016 15:13:50 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*213/peggy+adams+312pm.JPGLet's clear the shelters!]]><![CDATA[2016 Clear The Shelters: Upper Keys Humane Society]]>Sat, 23 Jul 2016 15:05:44 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*120/keys+250pm+1.JPGLet's clear the shelters!]]><![CDATA[2016 Clear The Shelters: Broward County Humane Society]]>Sat, 23 Jul 2016 17:55:05 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*212/hs+broward+544pm+1.jpgLet's clear the shelters!]]><![CDATA[2016 Clear The Shelters: Humane Society of Greater Miami]]>Sat, 23 Jul 2016 17:39:37 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/163*120/hs+miami+534pm+1.jpgLet's clear the shelters!]]><![CDATA[2016 Clear The Shelters: Broward Animal Care & Adoption]]>Sat, 23 Jul 2016 16:21:42 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*225/broward+acc+419pm+1.jpgLet's clear the shelters!]]><![CDATA[2016 Clear The Shelters: Miami-Dade Animal Services Adopted]]>Sat, 23 Jul 2016 18:04:42 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*219/md+animal+services+601pm.jpgLet's clear the shelters!]]><![CDATA[Broward Humane Society Adoptable Pets]]>Wed, 20 Jul 2016 15:56:13 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/182*120/NBC6_Allen.jpgCheck out the pets available for adoption at the Broward Humane Society!]]><![CDATA[A No-Kill Shelter Starts At Home: Part 2]]>Wed, 20 Jul 2016 12:32:20 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Doc+Kupkee+and+Ringo.JPG

by Dr. Ian Kupkee

Last week, in anticipation of Clear The Shelters, I began a series on the various and sundry reasons I’ve heard as to why pet owners resist the idea of spaying or neutering their pets. I also took great pains to explain that there are certain folks who are not the intended targets of my “why do you have an intact pet?” themed rants. As I’ve stated before, if your veterinarian feels your pet is not a candidate for surgery, or should not be spayed or neutered until it is more mature, you are off the hook. If you are a licensed, responsible breeder of health-tested, purpose-bred dogs, my gripe is not with you either.

And as I’ve said earlier, if you simply cannot afford to spay or neuter your pet, I am not calling you out either. On the contrary, I’ve put together a list of organizations that will spay or neuter your pet at a steeply discounted price, or perhaps even for free.

The reasons that make me fear for the sustainability of our shelter’s  vaunted no-kill status are the ones I hear from pet owners on a regular basis. Most don’t come from a place of ignorance, or even stubbornness.  Ironically, they come from a place of love, and of genuine concern. However in our zeal to treat pets as members of the family, we tend to forget that in many ways, they do not think like we do. This is manifested especially clearly in some of the reasons we give for not wanting to spay or neuter our pets.  Let’s take a look at some of more of the reasons for spay/neuter resistance. 

I could never deprive her of the experience of motherhood

For many humans parenthood is part of a life plan that begins percolating in childhood.  It is widely assumed we will grow up to raise children, regardless of whether or not we ultimately  choose that path. Because it is a societal expectation, we think about it. A lot. If and when it  happens, the rearing of our children occupies a large percentage of our time, energy, identity, and resources. This is not the case with our pets.

Dogs and cats live in the here and now. The don’t ponder possibilities, think of what could be, or wonder what the future might hold. Parenthood, as we know it, is not seen by our pets  as milestone or a goal.  For them, it is simply a biological urge that results in the production of offspring. Eight weeks after the offspring arrive, they are shipped off to new homes and gone from their mother’s lives forever. And you know what? Everybody just carries on living their lives.

Having babies is not a magical or life-changing experience for cats and dogs. They do not look into the eyes of that special someone and wonder what their future children will look like. They don’t worry about who will care for them when they’re old, or fantasize about hordes of happy grandbabies. They live in the moment. They live without care. And let’s face it - isn’t that one of the reasons why we love them? We kind of want to be them!  Your pet isn’t “missing out” on parenthood. She doesn’t know how to miss out.  Perhaps that is the true definition of joy.

I just want him to sow his wild oats once

Just like our pets don’t think about the future, likewise they don’t think about the past.  They live in a world devoid of a space-time continuum, and the oat-sowing experience will be promptly forgotten.  But the consequence of that singular act is a litter of puppies or kittens that are likely to end up in a shelter. It’s hard for us humans to wrap our heads around this one, but honestly, our pets don’t care if they “die as a virgin.” As long as there are car rides and belly rubs and squirrels, he’s going to be a happy camper. To quote a pithy Facebook meme, the only balls he cares about are the ones he fetches.  Seriously. Just neuter him.

I want my children to witness the miracle of birth

In the day and age of the internet there is no reason to use this as an excuse to breed an animal. YouTube is a treasure trove of birthing videos involving cats, dogs, livestock - even humans!  And if the miracle of human birth is the lesson you’re after, a digital education should leave very few questions unanswered. Videos of women giving birth in hospitals, at home, in birthing pools and in nature are just a few easy clicks away. And unlike the real deal, you as a parent can pre-screen them all.

While the process of birth is natural - and yes, very cool - anyone who’s ever been in or near a birthing situation can tell you things sometimes go wrong. And when the unexpected happens, it often happens dramatically and quickly.  Pets can die while giving birth. They may need an emergency c-section you cannot afford. She may bleed to death while you race to the vet’s office. The babies could be stillborn. Or the birth could go smoothly, only to have your pet refuse to care for her own babies.  It is utterly heartbreaking to watch these things happen. Ask yourself if you really want your children to witness them as well.

I’ll make good money selling her puppies

How can I put this delicately?

Um. no. You won’t.

I have clients who literally laugh in the faces of people who say this in our lobby.  They too, thought the same thing. They lost money, spayed the dog, and vowed never to breed a dog again. Remember the emergency c-section I mentioned? They’re complicated procedures which are not cheap. Your dog may need one of those. In order to be sold legally, each puppy must be vaccinated, dewormed and microchipped. And there is always the chance that one or more puppy will require extensive veterinary care.

Sure there are puppies and kittens being advertised online for thousands of dollars apiece.  But those kinds of prices are fetched for animals with impeccable and well-documented bloodlines.  They are bred by professionals who know what they’re doing. They often test their breeding stock for genetic markers that indicate a tendency towards breed-specific, inherited diseases. They are happy to provide you with references from people who have bought from them in the past, and by the way, they will likely want  to “interview” you as well. They charge what their puppies and kittens are worth, and the money you pay a good breeder represents money you will probably not pay a vet. Even so, many of these diligent professionals barely break even. They do it for the love of the breed. The money is negligible at best. Please do not be fooled into thinking that breeding a cute pet with another cute pet is a viable source of income. Potential buyers will not want to pay for a pet without a documented history. You’re likely to end up giving them away, or surrendering them to a shelter in order to cut your losses.

I’m not from here. And where I come from, we don’t do that to animals.

I’m not from here either, so I can relate to this one. I love this country deeply. I chose to come here, but like many immigrants there are things about it I suspect I will never understand. However, what I do understand is that while I am not expected to lose my identity or surrender my culture,  I am expected to assimilate.

Where I come from, we don’t “do that to animals” either. But part of being a responsible citizen of the country that welcomed me is being a responsible pet owner as well.  That means all of us doing our part to keep unwanted pets from flooding our shelters and roaming our streets. It means stepping out of our comfort zones and looking beyond our cultures to do what is right for our animals.  It means spaying and neutering the animals in our care. Period. It’s our adopted country’s societal expectation, and it’s in the best interest of our pets. 

This country was kind enough to provide us with a home. Sadly, the same cannot be said for all of its animals.  The no-kill status of the animal shelter in our adopted community will only be sustainable if we as individuals take responsibility for making it so. 

And that responsibility begins at home.

---

Do you have a question for Dr. Kupkee?

Dr. Kupkee is the lead practitioner at Sabal Chase Animal Clinic

Do you have a question for Dr. Kupkee? Send him an email by clicking here.

Click here for special deals and discounts exclusively for NBC 6 viewers.

Last week, in preparation for Clear The Shelters, I shared my thoughts on South Florida’s alarmingly high shelter pet population.  Additionally. I shared my thoughts on our community’s low spay/neuter compliance rate, and the correlation between that, and the need for what is becoming an annual adoption event.

 

There are many reasons why conscientious pet owners do not spay or neuter their pets.  Some pets are poor candidates for anesthetic procedures, others still may benefit from waiting until adolescence or adulthood before having said procedures performed.  Such animals, however, are the exceptions, rather than the rules.

 

I also detailed whom I was not addressing in my “why do you have an intact pet?” rant, and offered some solutions for pet owners who are genuinely struggling.  In case you missed it, let me go over it again:

 

If your pet is not a candidate for an early spay/neuter procedure due to a legitimate veterinary concern, this next bit is not for you. Carry on, and spay or neuter your pet if and when your veterinarian decides the time is right. Ditto for those of you whose pets are not healthy enough to have surgery.

 

Additionally, if you are a licensed, responsible breeder of healthy, purpose-bred dogs, I am not addressing you either. Ditto for those of you with genetically strong specimens whose bloodlines will truly benefit future generations of the breed. Thanks for not sending me hate mail. Keep up the good work.

 

And once again,  if you would absolutely love to get your pet spayed or neutered, but simply cannot afford to do so, I am not calling you out either. I am no stranger to financial hardship. Trust me, you won’t see any poor shaming here. Click here for a list of organizations that will spay or neuter your pet at a steeply reduced price, or perhaps even for free. http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Low-Cost-Spay-and-Neuter-Clinics-in-Miami-Dade-Broward-Palm-Beach-Monroe-Counties-386355091.html  These organizations are here to help, and would love for you to take advantage of their services.

 

If none of the above reasons apply to your pet, you undoubtedly have a reason for having an intact pet. Chances are, I’ve heard it before; and chances are, it’s bunk. Sadly, these misconceptions have been around for so long, that we tend to assume they are true.  So let’s do a little veterinary “mythbusting” as I share some of the most oft-repeated excuses for spay/neuter non-compliance.

 

“It makes them lazy and boring.”

 

While spaying and neutering will reduce a pet’s sex drive, that’s the only type of drive it affects. They will still retain their play drive, prey drive, activity level, protectiveness, eagerness to please, ability to work, and all the other things you love about them. In fact they will be more focused on the things you love about them because, as my wife so eloquently puts it, they will be thinking with the correct organ! The sex drive of a pet dog or cat can make them extremely unpleasant to live with. They can yowl, escape, fight, roam, and spray foul-smelling urine. Intact dogs are involved in roughly 90% of serious attacks on humans. https://www.avma.org/Advocacy/StateAndLocal/Pages/dogbite-summary.aspx These are the pets who bolt into traffic, dig under fences, destroy property, and make your neighbors hate you. They are often deemed “out of control” and surrendered to shelters - along with the unwanted offspring they produce. Both of our dogs were spayed and neutered before they were five months old. Grendel will swim until she is blue and shivering. Zohan is the Ironman of play. Lazy and boring? See for yourself.

 

Grendel running.jpgZ pool small.jpg

 

“It’s just so unnatural.”

 

So is killing over two million pets via lethal injection every year because there aren’t enough homes for them all. http://www.aspca.org/animal-homelessness/shelter-intake-and-surrender/pet-statistics

 

Cats and dogs are the quintessential genetically modified organisms.  There is no such thing is a free-ranging Schnauzer or an indigenous Golden Retriever. There is nothing natural about them.  Why we suddenly go into “granola mode” with regards to their reproductive organs is utterly beyond me.

 

A colleague of mine sometimes chides his clients by reminding them that rattlesnake venom is 100% natural and organic. In other words, not everything that’s natural is automatically good.

 

A spayed pet has a zero percent chance of developing a life-threatening uterine infection known as pyometra. Ditto for the risk of testicular cancer in neutered pets. The risk of metastatic breast cancer in intact female pets increases drastically with each heat cycle - and let’s not forget, our pets generally have between eight and ten breasts! And in nearly 20 years of practice, I’ve seen just one case of prostatic cancer in a neutered dog. For an intact male, this condition is almost inevitable -  dare I say, a “natural” progression of events.

 

“I really want one of his/her puppies!”

 

Just as every family has it’s black sheep, there is no guarantee the traits you love will be passed to the next generation. Breeding for temperament is something best left to qualified, experienced, professional breeders who know what the heck they are doing. I am nothing like anyone in my family, and I’m convinced my wife was left on her family’s doorstep by the fairy folk. Personality is not always an inherited trait.

 

If you still insist on breeding for “one of the puppies”, I would strongly encourage you to closely examine that sentence. There is a word included therein that saddens the hell out of me, and it should sadden the hell out of you too. Do you see it? Look closely...

 

One.

 

You want one of the puppies. She may have four. Or nine. Or twelve! What will become of the rest of them once you select the pick of the litter?

 

Don’t answer that. I know what you’re thinking. (I’ve been at this a while.) You’re thinking of the friends, coworkers and family members who have told you they would line up for one of Snowflake’s puppies! And yet what people say and what they ultimately do are often two separate things. Life changes quickly, and those surefire homes may be relocated, foreclosed upon, filled up with babies, or occupied by someone else’s surplus puppy.  Guess where that leaves Snowflake’s litter? You guessed it! Your friendly neighborhood shelter.If your friends and family members have puppy-ready homes, great! There are plenty in our shelters. And if we want said shelters to maintain their much-lauded, “no-kill” status, we as individuals must get our own houses in order. No-kill shelters are not sustainable in communities whose residents do not spay and neuter their pets. Period.

 

Folks, we all like to think our pets are special. I am absolutely besotted with mine. But in terms of the pet population’s gene pool, well...they’re not. I love them to pieces, but truth is truth. And if my dogs aren’t special enough to warrant a genetic legacy, chances are, yours aren’t either.

 

Next time, we’ll discuss even more of the reasons we don’t spay and neuter our pets! I’m sorry, did you think I was done? Like I said I’ve been at this a while, and I’ve got some good ones. Manliness, motherhood, miracles, educa

Last week, in preparation for Clear The Shelters, I shared my thoughts on South Florida’s alarmingly high shelter pet population.  Additionally. I shared my thoughts on our community’s low spay/neuter compliance rate, and the correlation between that, and the need for what is becoming an annual adoption event.

 

There are many reasons why conscientious pet owners do not spay or neuter their pets.  Some pets are poor candidates for anesthetic procedures, others still may benefit from waiting until adolescence or adulthood before having said procedures performed.  Such animals, however, are the exceptions, rather than the rules.

 

I also detailed whom I was not addressing in my “why do you have an intact pet?” rant, and offered some solutions for pet owners who are genuinely struggling.  In case you missed it, let me go over it again:

 

If your pet is not a candidate for an early spay/neuter procedure due to a legitimate veterinary concern, this next bit is not for you. Carry on, and spay or neuter your pet if and when your veterinarian decides the time is right. Ditto for those of you whose pets are not healthy enough to have surgery.

 

Additionally, if you are a licensed, responsible breeder of healthy, purpose-bred dogs, I am not addressing you either. Ditto for those of you with genetically strong specimens whose bloodlines will truly benefit future generations of the breed. Thanks for not sending me hate mail. Keep up the good work.

 

And once again,  if you would absolutely love to get your pet spayed or neutered, but simply cannot afford to do so, I am not calling you out either. I am no stranger to financial hardship. Trust me, you won’t see any poor shaming here. Click here for a list of organizations that will spay or neuter your pet at a steeply reduced price, or perhaps even for free. http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Low-Cost-Spay-and-Neuter-Clinics-in-Miami-Dade-Broward-Palm-Beach-Monroe-Counties-386355091.html  These organizations are here to help, and would love for you to take advantage of their services.

 

If none of the above reasons apply to your pet, you undoubtedly have a reason for having an intact pet. Chances are, I’ve heard it before; and chances are, it’s bunk. Sadly, these misconceptions have been around for so long, that we tend to assume they are true.  So let’s do a little veterinary “mythbusting” as I share some of the most oft-repeated excuses for spay/neuter non-compliance.

 

“It makes them lazy and boring.”

 

While spaying and neutering will reduce a pet’s sex drive, that’s the only type of drive it affects. They will still retain their play drive, prey drive, activity level, protectiveness, eagerness to please, ability to work, and all the other things you love about them. In fact they will be more focused on the things you love about them because, as my wife so eloquently puts it, they will be thinking with the correct organ! The sex drive of a pet dog or cat can make them extremely unpleasant to live with. They can yowl, escape, fight, roam, and spray foul-smelling urine. Intact dogs are involved in roughly 90% of serious attacks on humans. https://www.avma.org/Advocacy/StateAndLocal/Pages/dogbite-summary.aspx These are the pets who bolt into traffic, dig under fences, destroy property, and make your neighbors hate you. They are often deemed “out of control” and surrendered to shelters - along with the unwanted offspring they produce. Both of our dogs were spayed and neutered before they were five months old. Grendel will swim until she is blue and shivering. Zohan is the Ironman of play. Lazy and boring? See for yourself.

 

 

 

“It’s just so unnatural.”

 

So is killing over two million pets via lethal injection every year because there aren’t enough homes for them all. http://www.aspca.org/animal-homelessness/shelter-intake-and-surrender/pet-statistics

 

Cats and dogs are the quintessential genetically modified organisms.  There is no such thing is a free-ranging Schnauzer or an indigenous Golden Retriever. There is nothing natural about them.  Why we suddenly go into “granola mode” with regards to their reproductive organs is utterly beyond me.

 

A colleague of mine sometimes chides his clients by reminding them that rattlesnake venom is 100% natural and organic. In other words, not everything that’s natural is automatically good.

 

A spayed pet has a zero percent chance of developing a life-threatening uterine infection known as pyometra. Ditto for the risk of testicular cancer in neutered pets. The risk of metastatic breast cancer in intact female pets increases drastically with each heat cycle - and let’s not forget, our pets generally have between eight and ten breasts! And in nearly 20 years of practice, I’ve seen just one case of prostatic cancer in a neutered dog. For an intact male, this condition is almost inevitable -  dare I say, a “natural” progression of events.

 

“I really want one of his/her puppies!”

 

Just as every family has it’s black sheep, there is no guarantee the traits you love will be passed to the next generation. Breeding for temperament is something best left to qualified, experienced, professional breeders who know what the heck they are doing. I am nothing like anyone in my family, and I’m convinced my wife was left on her family’s doorstep by the fairy folk. Personality is not always an inherited trait.

 

If you still insist on breeding for “one of the puppies”, I would strongly encourage you to closely examine that sentence. There is a word included therein that saddens the hell out of me, and it should sadden the hell out of you too. Do you see it? Look closely...

 

One.

 

You want one of the puppies. She may have four. Or nine. Or twelve! What will become of the rest of them once you select the pick of the litter?

 

Don’t answer that. I know what you’re thinking. (I’ve been at this a while.) You’re thinking of the friends, coworkers and family members who have told you they would line up for one of Snowflake’s puppies! And yet what people say and what they ultimately do are often two separate things. Life changes quickly, and those surefire homes may be relocated, foreclosed upon, filled up with babies, or occupied by someone else’s surplus puppy.  Guess where that leaves Snowflake’s litter? You guessed it! Your friendly neighborhood shelter.If your friends and family members have puppy-ready homes, great! There are plenty in our shelters. And if we want said shelters to maintain their much-lauded, “no-kill” status, we as individuals must get our own houses in order. No-kill shelters are not sustainable in communities whose residents do not spay and neuter their pets. Period.

 

Folks, we all like to think our pets are special. I am absolutely besotted with mine. But in terms of the pet population’s gene pool, well...they’re not. I love them to pieces, but truth is truth. And if my dogs aren’t special enough to warrant a genetic legacy, chances are, yours aren’t either.

 

Next time, we’ll discuss even more of the reasons we don’t spay and neuter our pets! I’m sorry, did you think I was done? Like I said I’ve been at this a while, and I’ve got some good ones. Manliness, motherhood, miracles, educational value...I’ve heard them all. And next time, so will you.

 

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go answer some hate mail…

tional value...I’ve heard them all. And next time, so will you.

 

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go answer some hate mail…

]]>
<![CDATA[A No-Kill Shelter Starts At Home: Part 1]]>Mon, 18 Jul 2016 11:59:38 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*120/Doc+Kupkee+and+Murphy.JPG

by Dr. Ian Kupkee

Last week, in preparation for Clear The Shelters, I shared my thoughts on South Florida’s alarmingly high shelter pet population.  Additionally. I shared my thoughts on our community’s low spay/neuter compliance rate, and the correlation between that, and the need for what is becoming an annual adoption event.

There are many reasons why conscientious pet owners do not spay or neuter their pets.  Some pets are poor candidates for anesthetic procedures, others still may benefit from waiting until adolescence or adulthood before having said procedures performed.  Such animals, however, are the exceptions, rather than the rules.

I also detailed whom I was not addressing in my “why do you have an intact pet?” rant, and offered some solutions for pet owners who are genuinely struggling.  In case you missed it, let me go over it again:

If your pet is not a candidate for an early spay/neuter procedure due to a legitimate veterinary concern, this next bit is not for you. Carry on, and spay or neuter your pet if and when your veterinarian decides the time is right. Ditto for those of you whose pets are not healthy enough to have surgery.

Additionally, if you are a licensed, responsible breeder of healthy, purpose-bred dogs, I am not addressing you either. Ditto for those of you with genetically strong specimens whose bloodlines will truly benefit future generations of the breed. Thanks for not sending me hate mail. Keep up the good work.

And once again,  if you would absolutely love to get your pet spayed or neutered, but simply cannot afford to do so, I am not calling you out either. I am no stranger to financial hardship. Trust me, you won’t see any poor shaming here. Click here for a list of organizations that will spay or neuter your pet at a steeply reduced price, or perhaps even for free. These organizations are here to help, and would love for you to take advantage of their services.

If none of the above reasons apply to your pet, you undoubtedly have a reason for having an intact pet. Chances are, I’ve heard it before; and chances are, it’s bunk. Sadly, these misconceptions have been around for so long, that we tend to assume they are true.  So let’s do a little veterinary “mythbusting” as I share some of the most oft-repeated excuses for spay/neuter non-compliance.

It makes them lazy and boring

While spaying and neutering will reduce a pet’s sex drive, that’s the only type of drive it affects. They will still retain their play drive, prey drive, activity level, protectiveness, eagerness to please, ability to work, and all the other things you love about them. In fact they will be more focused on the things you love about them because, as my wife so eloquently puts it, they will be thinking with the correct organ!

The sex drive of a pet dog or cat can make them extremely unpleasant to live with. They can yowl, escape, fight, roam, and spray foul-smelling urine. Intact dogs are involved in roughly 90 percent of serious attacks on humans. These are the pets who bolt into traffic, dig under fences, destroy property, and make your neighbors hate you. They are often deemed "out of control" and surrendered to shelters - along with the unwanted offspring they produce. Both of our dogs were spayed and neutered before they were five months old. Grendel will swim until she is blue and shivering. Zohan is the Ironman of play. Lazy and boring? See for yourself.

 

It’s just so unnatural

So is killing over two million pets via lethal injection every year because there aren’t enough homes for them all.

Cats and dogs are the quintessential genetically modified organisms.  There is no such thing is a free-ranging Schnauzer or an indigenous Golden Retriever. There is nothing natural about them.  Why we suddenly go into “granola mode” with regards to their reproductive organs is utterly beyond me.

A colleague of mine sometimes chides his clients by reminding them that rattlesnake venom is 100% natural and organic. In other words, not everything that’s natural is automatically good.

A spayed pet has a zero percent chance of developing a life-threatening uterine infection known as pyometra. Ditto for the risk of testicular cancer in neutered pets. The risk of metastatic breast cancer in intact female pets increases drastically with each heat cycle - and let’s not forget, our pets generally have between eight and ten breasts! And in nearly 20 years of practice, I’ve seen just one case of prostatic cancer in a neutered dog. For an intact male, this condition is almost inevitable -  dare I say, a “natural” progression of events.

I really want one of his/her puppies!

Just as every family has it’s black sheep, there is no guarantee the traits you love will be passed to the next generation. Breeding for temperament is something best left to qualified, experienced, professional breeders who know what the heck they are doing. I am nothing like anyone in my family, and I’m convinced my wife was left on her family’s doorstep by the fairy folk. Personality is not always an inherited trait.

If you still insist on breeding for one of the puppies, I would strongly encourage you to closely examine that sentence. There is a word included therein that saddens the hell out of me, and it should sadden the hell out of you too. Do you see it? Look closely...

One ...

You want one of the puppies. She may have four. Or nine. Or twelve! What will become of the rest of them once you select the pick of the litter?

Don’t answer that. I know what you’re thinking. (I’ve been at this a while.) You’re thinking of the friends, coworkers and family members who have told you they would line up for one of Snowflake’s puppies! And yet what people say and what they ultimately do are often two separate things. Life changes quickly, and those surefire homes may be relocated, foreclosed upon, filled up with babies, or occupied by someone else’s surplus puppy.  Guess where that leaves Snowflake’s litter? You guessed it! Your friendly neighborhood shelter.If your friends and family members have puppy-ready homes, great! There are plenty in our shelters. And if we want said shelters to maintain their much-lauded, “no-kill” status, we as individuals must get our own houses in order. No-kill shelters are not sustainable in communities whose residents do not spay and neuter their pets. Period.

Folks, we all like to think our pets are special. I am absolutely besotted with mine. But in terms of the pet population’s gene pool, well...they’re not. I love them to pieces, but truth is truth. And if my dogs aren’t special enough to warrant a genetic legacy, chances are, yours aren’t either.

Next time, we’ll discuss even more of the reasons we don’t spay and neuter our pets! I’m sorry, did you think I was done? Like I said I’ve been at this a while, and I’ve got some good ones. Manliness, motherhood, miracles, educational value...I’ve heard them all. And next time, so will you.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go answer some hate mail…

---

Do you have a question for Dr. Kupkee?

Dr. Kupkee is the lead practitioner at Sabal Chase Animal Clinic

Do you have a question for Dr. Kupkee? Send him an email by clicking here.

Click here for special deals and discounts exclusively for NBC 6 viewers.

Last week, in preparation for Clear The Shelters, I shared my thoughts on South Florida’s alarmingly high shelter pet population.  Additionally. I shared my thoughts on our community’s low spay/neuter compliance rate, and the correlation between that, and the need for what is becoming an annual adoption event.

 

There are many reasons why conscientious pet owners do not spay or neuter their pets.  Some pets are poor candidates for anesthetic procedures, others still may benefit from waiting until adolescence or adulthood before having said procedures performed.  Such animals, however, are the exceptions, rather than the rules.

 

I also detailed whom I was not addressing in my “why do you have an intact pet?” rant, and offered some solutions for pet owners who are genuinely struggling.  In case you missed it, let me go over it again:

 

If your pet is not a candidate for an early spay/neuter procedure due to a legitimate veterinary concern, this next bit is not for you. Carry on, and spay or neuter your pet if and when your veterinarian decides the time is right. Ditto for those of you whose pets are not healthy enough to have surgery.

 

Additionally, if you are a licensed, responsible breeder of healthy, purpose-bred dogs, I am not addressing you either. Ditto for those of you with genetically strong specimens whose bloodlines will truly benefit future generations of the breed. Thanks for not sending me hate mail. Keep up the good work.

 

And once again,  if you would absolutely love to get your pet spayed or neutered, but simply cannot afford to do so, I am not calling you out either. I am no stranger to financial hardship. Trust me, you won’t see any poor shaming here. Click here for a list of organizations that will spay or neuter your pet at a steeply reduced price, or perhaps even for free. http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Low-Cost-Spay-and-Neuter-Clinics-in-Miami-Dade-Broward-Palm-Beach-Monroe-Counties-386355091.html  These organizations are here to help, and would love for you to take advantage of their services.

 

If none of the above reasons apply to your pet, you undoubtedly have a reason for having an intact pet. Chances are, I’ve heard it before; and chances are, it’s bunk. Sadly, these misconceptions have been around for so long, that we tend to assume they are true.  So let’s do a little veterinary “mythbusting” as I share some of the most oft-repeated excuses for spay/neuter non-compliance.

 

“It makes them lazy and boring.”

 

While spaying and neutering will reduce a pet’s sex drive, that’s the only type of drive it affects. They will still retain their play drive, prey drive, activity level, protectiveness, eagerness to please, ability to work, and all the other things you love about them. In fact they will be more focused on the things you love about them because, as my wife so eloquently puts it, they will be thinking with the correct organ! The sex drive of a pet dog or cat can make them extremely unpleasant to live with. They can yowl, escape, fight, roam, and spray foul-smelling urine. Intact dogs are involved in roughly 90% of serious attacks on humans. https://www.avma.org/Advocacy/StateAndLocal/Pages/dogbite-summary.aspx These are the pets who bolt into traffic, dig under fences, destroy property, and make your neighbors hate you. They are often deemed “out of control” and surrendered to shelters - along with the unwanted offspring they produce. Both of our dogs were spayed and neutered before they were five months old. Grendel will swim until she is blue and shivering. Zohan is the Ironman of play. Lazy and boring? See for yourself.

 

Grendel running.jpgZ pool small.jpg

 

“It’s just so unnatural.”

 

So is killing over two million pets via lethal injection every year because there aren’t enough homes for them all. http://www.aspca.org/animal-homelessness/shelter-intake-and-surrender/pet-statistics

 

Cats and dogs are the quintessential genetically modified organisms.  There is no such thing is a free-ranging Schnauzer or an indigenous Golden Retriever. There is nothing natural about them.  Why we suddenly go into “granola mode” with regards to their reproductive organs is utterly beyond me.

 

A colleague of mine sometimes chides his clients by reminding them that rattlesnake venom is 100% natural and organic. In other words, not everything that’s natural is automatically good.

 

A spayed pet has a zero percent chance of developing a life-threatening uterine infection known as pyometra. Ditto for the risk of testicular cancer in neutered pets. The risk of metastatic breast cancer in intact female pets increases drastically with each heat cycle - and let’s not forget, our pets generally have between eight and ten breasts! And in nearly 20 years of practice, I’ve seen just one case of prostatic cancer in a neutered dog. For an intact male, this condition is almost inevitable -  dare I say, a “natural” progression of events.

 

“I really want one of his/her puppies!”

 

Just as every family has it’s black sheep, there is no guarantee the traits you love will be passed to the next generation. Breeding for temperament is something best left to qualified, experienced, professional breeders who know what the heck they are doing. I am nothing like anyone in my family, and I’m convinced my wife was left on her family’s doorstep by the fairy folk. Personality is not always an inherited trait.

 

If you still insist on breeding for “one of the puppies”, I would strongly encourage you to closely examine that sentence. There is a word included therein that saddens the hell out of me, and it should sadden the hell out of you too. Do you see it? Look closely...

 

One.

 

You want one of the puppies. She may have four. Or nine. Or twelve! What will become of the rest of them once you select the pick of the litter?

 

Don’t answer that. I know what you’re thinking. (I’ve been at this a while.) You’re thinking of the friends, coworkers and family members who have told you they would line up for one of Snowflake’s puppies! And yet what people say and what they ultimately do are often two separate things. Life changes quickly, and those surefire homes may be relocated, foreclosed upon, filled up with babies, or occupied by someone else’s surplus puppy.  Guess where that leaves Snowflake’s litter? You guessed it! Your friendly neighborhood shelter.If your friends and family members have puppy-ready homes, great! There are plenty in our shelters. And if we want said shelters to maintain their much-lauded, “no-kill” status, we as individuals must get our own houses in order. No-kill shelters are not sustainable in communities whose residents do not spay and neuter their pets. Period.

 

Folks, we all like to think our pets are special. I am absolutely besotted with mine. But in terms of the pet population’s gene pool, well...they’re not. I love them to pieces, but truth is truth. And if my dogs aren’t special enough to warrant a genetic legacy, chances are, yours aren’t either.

 

Next time, we’ll discuss even more of the reasons we don’t spay and neuter our pets! I’m sorry, did you think I was done? Like I said I’ve been at this a while, and I’ve got some good ones. Manliness, motherhood, miracles, educa

Last week, in preparation for Clear The Shelters, I shared my thoughts on South Florida’s alarmingly high shelter pet population.  Additionally. I shared my thoughts on our community’s low spay/neuter compliance rate, and the correlation between that, and the need for what is becoming an annual adoption event.

 

There are many reasons why conscientious pet owners do not spay or neuter their pets.  Some pets are poor candidates for anesthetic procedures, others still may benefit from waiting until adolescence or adulthood before having said procedures performed.  Such animals, however, are the exceptions, rather than the rules.

 

I also detailed whom I was not addressing in my “why do you have an intact pet?” rant, and offered some solutions for pet owners who are genuinely struggling.  In case you missed it, let me go over it again:

 

If your pet is not a candidate for an early spay/neuter procedure due to a legitimate veterinary concern, this next bit is not for you. Carry on, and spay or neuter your pet if and when your veterinarian decides the time is right. Ditto for those of you whose pets are not healthy enough to have surgery.

 

Additionally, if you are a licensed, responsible breeder of healthy, purpose-bred dogs, I am not addressing you either. Ditto for those of you with genetically strong specimens whose bloodlines will truly benefit future generations of the breed. Thanks for not sending me hate mail. Keep up the good work.

 

And once again,  if you would absolutely love to get your pet spayed or neutered, but simply cannot afford to do so, I am not calling you out either. I am no stranger to financial hardship. Trust me, you won’t see any poor shaming here. Click here for a list of organizations that will spay or neuter your pet at a steeply reduced price, or perhaps even for free. http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Low-Cost-Spay-and-Neuter-Clinics-in-Miami-Dade-Broward-Palm-Beach-Monroe-Counties-386355091.html  These organizations are here to help, and would love for you to take advantage of their services.

 

If none of the above reasons apply to your pet, you undoubtedly have a reason for having an intact pet. Chances are, I’ve heard it before; and chances are, it’s bunk. Sadly, these misconceptions have been around for so long, that we tend to assume they are true.  So let’s do a little veterinary “mythbusting” as I share some of the most oft-repeated excuses for spay/neuter non-compliance.

 

“It makes them lazy and boring.”

 

While spaying and neutering will reduce a pet’s sex drive, that’s the only type of drive it affects. They will still retain their play drive, prey drive, activity level, protectiveness, eagerness to please, ability to work, and all the other things you love about them. In fact they will be more focused on the things you love about them because, as my wife so eloquently puts it, they will be thinking with the correct organ! The sex drive of a pet dog or cat can make them extremely unpleasant to live with. They can yowl, escape, fight, roam, and spray foul-smelling urine. Intact dogs are involved in roughly 90% of serious attacks on humans. https://www.avma.org/Advocacy/StateAndLocal/Pages/dogbite-summary.aspx These are the pets who bolt into traffic, dig under fences, destroy property, and make your neighbors hate you. They are often deemed “out of control” and surrendered to shelters - along with the unwanted offspring they produce. Both of our dogs were spayed and neutered before they were five months old. Grendel will swim until she is blue and shivering. Zohan is the Ironman of play. Lazy and boring? See for yourself.

 

 

 

“It’s just so unnatural.”

 

So is killing over two million pets via lethal injection every year because there aren’t enough homes for them all. http://www.aspca.org/animal-homelessness/shelter-intake-and-surrender/pet-statistics

 

Cats and dogs are the quintessential genetically modified organisms.  There is no such thing is a free-ranging Schnauzer or an indigenous Golden Retriever. There is nothing natural about them.  Why we suddenly go into “granola mode” with regards to their reproductive organs is utterly beyond me.

 

A colleague of mine sometimes chides his clients by reminding them that rattlesnake venom is 100% natural and organic. In other words, not everything that’s natural is automatically good.

 

A spayed pet has a zero percent chance of developing a life-threatening uterine infection known as pyometra. Ditto for the risk of testicular cancer in neutered pets. The risk of metastatic breast cancer in intact female pets increases drastically with each heat cycle - and let’s not forget, our pets generally have between eight and ten breasts! And in nearly 20 years of practice, I’ve seen just one case of prostatic cancer in a neutered dog. For an intact male, this condition is almost inevitable -  dare I say, a “natural” progression of events.

 

“I really want one of his/her puppies!”

 

Just as every family has it’s black sheep, there is no guarantee the traits you love will be passed to the next generation. Breeding for temperament is something best left to qualified, experienced, professional breeders who know what the heck they are doing. I am nothing like anyone in my family, and I’m convinced my wife was left on her family’s doorstep by the fairy folk. Personality is not always an inherited trait.

 

If you still insist on breeding for “one of the puppies”, I would strongly encourage you to closely examine that sentence. There is a word included therein that saddens the hell out of me, and it should sadden the hell out of you too. Do you see it? Look closely...

 

One.

 

You want one of the puppies. She may have four. Or nine. Or twelve! What will become of the rest of them once you select the pick of the litter?

 

Don’t answer that. I know what you’re thinking. (I’ve been at this a while.) You’re thinking of the friends, coworkers and family members who have told you they would line up for one of Snowflake’s puppies! And yet what people say and what they ultimately do are often two separate things. Life changes quickly, and those surefire homes may be relocated, foreclosed upon, filled up with babies, or occupied by someone else’s surplus puppy.  Guess where that leaves Snowflake’s litter? You guessed it! Your friendly neighborhood shelter.If your friends and family members have puppy-ready homes, great! There are plenty in our shelters. And if we want said shelters to maintain their much-lauded, “no-kill” status, we as individuals must get our own houses in order. No-kill shelters are not sustainable in communities whose residents do not spay and neuter their pets. Period.

 

Folks, we all like to think our pets are special. I am absolutely besotted with mine. But in terms of the pet population’s gene pool, well...they’re not. I love them to pieces, but truth is truth. And if my dogs aren’t special enough to warrant a genetic legacy, chances are, yours aren’t either.

 

Next time, we’ll discuss even more of the reasons we don’t spay and neuter our pets! I’m sorry, did you think I was done? Like I said I’ve been at this a while, and I’ve got some good ones. Manliness, motherhood, miracles, educational value...I’ve heard them all. And next time, so will you.

 

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go answer some hate mail…

tional value...I’ve heard them all. And next time, so will you.

 

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go answer some hate mail…

]]>
<![CDATA[Dog Gets Free Treatment After Cancer Diagnosis]]>Fri, 15 Jul 2016 10:36:43 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/071516+rusty+pit+bull+cancer+surgery.jpg

For one South Florida dog, the last five months have been a whirlwind journey that almost came to an end recently before Miami-Dade Animal Rescue Services stepped in to help.

Rusty, a 3-year-old pit bull, was taken to a local shelter Feb. 27 after being found as a stray. He was adopted May 4 by a Broward County family after nearly 10 weeks in the shelter, according to MDARS.

Shortly after his adoption, however, Rusty was diagnosed with a bone tumor called osteosarcoma, which is common in dogs. Expensive treatments meant his new family had to consider giving Rusty back, but MDARS stepped in and provided the surgery needed at no cost after hearing the story.

Rusty has been resting and recovering in Miami, but will soon be going home to continue his recovery process.



Photo Credit: Miami-Dade Animal Rescue Services]]>
<![CDATA[Broward Humane Society Adoptable Pets]]>Thu, 14 Jul 2016 15:56:49 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/182*120/NBC6+_Angel.jpgCheck out the pets available for adoption at the Broward Humane Society!]]><![CDATA[Animal Shelter Asking Pokemon Go Players For Help]]>Thu, 14 Jul 2016 15:35:59 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Pokemon_go_app.jpg

An animal shelter is asking "Pokemon Go'' players to walk an adoptable dog as they wander the streets of an eastern Indiana city doing battle with digital monsters on their smartphones.

The idea is the brainchild of Phil Peckinpaugh, the superintendent of Muncie Animal Shelter. He noticed people shuffling along as they played the addictive game and thought "it would be awesome'' if they each had a dog to walk.

Peckinpaugh posted the idea on Facebook and it was widely shared.

He says he bought 20 new leashes to cope with the increase in demand, which is fortunate because 73 "Pokemon Go'' players heeded the call Wednesday and turned up to exercise hounds, including one who adopted a dog.

Peckinpaugh says he hopes it's not just a passing fad.

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<![CDATA[We Do Not Have A Problem With Our Animal Shelters]]>Fri, 15 Jul 2016 12:47:50 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*120/Clear+The+Shelters+Adopt+Ian+Kupkee.JPG

by Dr. Ian Kupkee

On one of our recent travels, we met a lovely couple from the Northeast. As is often the case, the get-to-know-you banter came around to the questions of where we were from, and what we did for a living. When I told them we ran a veterinary hospital in Miami, the husband just shook his head.

I've heard you people have a serious animal shelter problem."

I was at a loss for words, an affliction which thankfully, rarely affects my wife.

"Not at all," she shot back. "But our animal shelters have a pretty serious people problem."

It’s Time to Clear The Shelters - Again

Last year, NBC-owned stations from all over the country joined forces with over 400 animal shelters, with the goal of clearing the shelters in just one day. Across the nation, roughly 20,000 dogs and cats found their forever homes. It was an exciting event, and I was simultaneously humbled and thrilled to have been included.

The best part? This year, on July 23rd, we’re doing it again.

The worst part? This year, on July 23rd, we’re doing it again.

Because while memories of last year’s empty kennels and quiet hallways are still fresh in my mind, the sad truth is that once again, our shelters are at maximum capacity.

How Does This Happen?

Knowing our travel companions were from the Northeast made their bewilderment a little easier to forgive. In their neck of the woods, the "shelter problems" are strikingly different. Many places in the Northeast suffer from a shortage of adoptable pets. In fact, some such communities request periodic "transports" of homeless pets from our shelters to theirs.

In fairness to our travel mates, it’s hard for me to wrap my head around that concept, so their confusion over our situation is understandable. Here in South Florida, our perpetually warm weather means high survival rates for puppies and kittens that are born to stray dogs and free-roaming cats. Without putting too fine a point on it, let’s just say that the changing seasons up north create a different set of parameters and leave it at that. But it’s not just climate reality that keeps their stray and shelter pet populations in check. The main factor driving their low shelter pet population is their sky-high rate of spay/neuter compliance.

Are You A Part Of The Problem?

Before I go any further, let me make a couple of things clear. If your pet is not a candidate for an early spay or neuter procedure due to a legitimate veterinary concern, this next bit is not for you. Ditto for those of you whose pets are not healthy enough to have surgery. Carry on, and spay or neuter your pet if or when your veterinarian decides the time is right.

Additionally, if you are a licensed, responsible, conscientious breeder of healthy, purpose-bred dogs, I am not addressing you either. Ditto for those of you with genetically strong specimens whose bloodlines will genuinely benefit future generations of the breed. By all means, keep reading and thanks for the click, but don’t send me hate mail. We’re good.

Finally, if you would absolutely love to get your pet spayed or neutered, but simply cannot afford to do so, I’m not calling you out either. I am no stranger to financial hardship. I’ve been there, and it sucks. I get it. Click here for a list of organizations that may be able to spay or neuter your pet at a steeply reduced price, or perhaps even for free.  These organizations are here to help, and would love for you to take advantage of their services.

Having spelled out my disclaimers, let me now say this.

As a forces kid, I grew up in over a half dozen different countries. As an adult, I’ve lived and practiced veterinary medicine throughout the country. I’ve run spay/neuter clinics in rural Central America.

Nowhere have I seen such stubborn resistance towards the concept of spaying and neutering as I have seen right here in my own proverbial backyard. It is mind-boggling, it is an embarrassment to our community, and it’s literally killing our animals.

If you don’t fall into one of the "free pass" categories listed above, and you’re getting ready to send me a piece of your mind, understand that I’ve probably heard some version of your objection before. Indeed, the reasons I have heard for spay/neuter non-compliance are so varied and surreal that they warrant their own separate column. And rest assured, that’s in the works!

I’ll also be discussing the benefits of spaying and neutering for those who may be new to pet ownership, and dissolving the myths that lead to resistance in the first place. We’ll talk about the reasons pets are surrendered to shelters, and what you can do to avoid situations that may force you to give up your pet. There are many unavoidable and heartbreaking reasons why a pet may end up in a shelter. But many of these situations can be headed off at the pass by planning ahead, and practicing due diligence.

Clear The Shelters is an event that has forever changed the lives of thousands of pets. But the fact that it is turning into an annual event should give us cause for concern. It’s only been a year, and once again, many facilities are bursting at the seams. And that, my friends, is not a shelter problem.

It’s a people problem.

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Do you have a question for Dr. Kupkee?

Dr. Kupkee is the lead practitioner at Sabal Chase Animal Clinic

Do you have a question for Dr. Kupkee? Send him an email by clicking here.

Click here for special deals and discounts exclusively for NBC 6 viewers.

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<![CDATA[NBC 6 Viewers Love Their Pets!]]>Mon, 18 Jul 2016 16:47:08 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*160/1d1d631399b24a6482e6ee2e4fdfdd47.jpgLet's clear the shelters!]]><![CDATA[2015 ClearTheShelters: Upper Keys Humane Society]]>Wed, 13 Jul 2016 11:18:12 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*120/ctskeys3.JPGPets Adopted At Upper Keys Humane Society on #ClearTheShelters Day]]><![CDATA[2015 ClearTheShelters: Humane Society of Greater Miami]]>Wed, 13 Jul 2016 11:14:46 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*160/cts_hsgm_107.JPGPets Adopted At Humane Society of Greater Miami on #ClearTheShelters Day]]><![CDATA[2015 ClearTheShelters: Humane Society of Broward County]]>Wed, 13 Jul 2016 11:11:54 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*213/cts_hsbc_beauty.jpgPets Adopted At Humane Society of Broward County on #ClearTheShelters Day]]><![CDATA[2015 ClearTheShelters: Miami-Dade Animal Services]]>Wed, 13 Jul 2016 11:15:38 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*120/cts_mdas_13.JPGPets Adopted At MIami-Dade Animal Services on #ClearTheShelters Day]]><![CDATA[Madonna Dancer’s Dog Fatally Shot by Police in Brooklyn]]>Wed, 13 Jul 2016 09:39:57 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/stonnie+boy+dog+shot+killed.jpg

A dog belonging to a professional dancer touring with Madonna was shot and killed by police officers while they were issuing an arrest warrant in Brooklyn Tuesday, police and friends say. 

The officers went to a home on Montauk Avenue in East New York in the early evening to serve a warrant to a 29-year-old man wanted in an open complaint, police said.

There, the suspect had a pit bull loose, and the dog bit one of the officers in the arm. His partner opened fire on the dog, killing it, police said.

"They came into the gate. He had the dog loose and the dog came out," said witness Micky Burgos. 

The cop who was bitten was treated for minor injuries. 

The dog belonged to a friend of the suspect, who was watching it while the owner -- a professional dancer named Stanley "Sheik" Mondesir -- wraps up his tour with Madonna in Los Angeles, friends said.

A witness said the officers had no choice but to shoot the animal, but friends said the dog was well-trained and cops should have tried to avoid it.

"The dog is a good dog," said Peaches Simmons, a friend of Mondesir. "I feel like if they really needed to get in the house -- that's why the need animal control." 

Simmons called Mondesir to let him know his dog was killed, and said he was distraught.

"He started crying 'cause he had Stonnie since he's a baby," said Simmons.

The dog, named Stonnie Boy -- an apparent slang term for "get wild" and something Madonna yells onstage -- was about 3 or 4 years old. 

People in the neighborhood said the dog was well-behaved and never seemed aggressive. But Burgos said the officers did what they had to do.

"I told the police officer, 'I'm sorry, it wasn't your fault,' 'cause the dog came at him," said Burgos. 

Police would not describe the nature of the warrant that was being issued against the suspect. 

Mondesir is a so-called "bone-breaker" dancer who has been touring with Madonna over the past year, friends said. He was also part of a popular dance crew, RingMasters, that appeared on MTV. 



Photo Credit: NBC 4 NY/Provided
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Low Cost Spay and Neuter Clinics]]>Wed, 16 Aug 2017 15:12:45 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Dog-Cat-GettyImages-10093564.jpg

List Compiled By Sabal Chase Animal Clinic

There are many options available in South Florida for low-income residents who would like to spay or neuter their pets. While most clinics require a nominal fee from the pet owner, some provide their services for free.  Call the facility first for exact prices and specifications. Surgical clinics generally run on an appointment basis, and some require proof of low-income status, so be sure to contact the organization directly in order to make arrangements for your pet.

Miami-Dade County

Project Pet Snip

http://www.projectpetsnip.com/#!servicesprice/c8h9

Homestead Community Spay/Neuter Clinic

http://www.miamidade.gov/animals/homestead-spay-neuter-clinic.asp

Income Qualified Spay/Neuter Program

http://www.miamidade.gov/animals/income-qualified-spay-neuter-program.asp

Low Cost Spay/Neuter Surgeries at Miami Dade Animal Services

http://www.miamidade.gov/animals/spay-neuter.asp

Miami Dade County Community Spay/Neuter Clinic

http://www.miamidade.gov/animals/community-spay-neuter-clinic.asp

Trap-Neuter-Return Policy for Community Cats

http://www.miamidade.gov/animals/trap-neuter-return.asp

Humane Society of Greater Miami -Locations in North Miami Beach and Cutler Bay

http://www.humanesocietymiami.org/low-cost-spay-and-neuter/

The Cat Network

http://thecatnetwork.org/help-a-cat/spayneuter/certificates/

South Florida Veterinary Foundation

http://sfvet.org/our-programs/

Animal Welfare Society

https://www.awsfl.com/index.php/services/

Veterinary Care and Human Services

https://www.facebook.com/Veterinary-Care-and-Human-Services-136567249703964/info/?tab=page_info


Broward County

Humane Society of Broward County for Dogs

http://humanebroward.com/serviceslow-cost-spay-neuterdogs/

Humane Society of Greater Miami for Cats

http://humanebroward.com/serviceslow-cost-spay-neutercats/

Stray Aid and Rescue, Pompano Beach

http://www.strayaid.org/

Broward Pet Fix

http://www.broward.org/Animal/ProgramsServices/Pages/Broward-Pet-Fix.aspx

Cats Exclusive, Inc.

http://www.catsexclusive.org/spayneuter.php

Animal Aid, Inc.

http://www.animal-aid.com/visit_clinic.html


Monroe County

Humane Animal Care Coalition, Key Largo

http://www.humaneanimalcoalition.com/About_Us.php

Florida Keys SPCA, Key West

http://fkspca.org/animal-services/spay-neuter-clinic/

Spay Neuter in Paradise (SNIP), Marathon

http://spayneuterinparadise.weebly.com/index.html


Palm Beach County

The Spay Shuttle at Palm Beach County Animal Care and Control

http://www.pbcgov.com/publicsafety/animalcare/spay_shuttle.htm

Pahokee Free Spay/Neuter Clinic

http://www.pbcgov.com/publicsafety/animalcare/spay_shuttle.htm

Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League Community Cat Program

http://www.peggyadams.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=pages.spay-or-neuter

Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League Spay/Neuter Clinic

http://www.peggyadams.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=pages.spay-or-neuter

Luv-A-Pet

http://www.luvapet.net/services.html

Paws2Help, West Palm Beach and Jupiter

http://www.paws2help.com/info/display?PageID=3145

Humane Society of the Palm Beaches

http://www.peggyadams.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=pages.spay-or-neuter

Furry Friends Adoption and Clinic

http://www.furryfriendsadoption.org/#!clinic/t413d

Justin Bartlett Animal Hospital

http://www.justinbartlettanimalhospital.org/#!spayandneuter/cus0

Stray No More

http://www.straynomore.org/spayneuter.htm

PBC Cats

https://www.facebook.com/PBC-Cats-274141459291900/

Cats Exclusive, Inc.

http://www.catsexclusive.org/spayneuter.php


To visit the NBC6.com "All About Animals" section, click here.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[9 Cats That Won't Make You Sneeze]]>Thu, 08 Aug 2019 09:53:39 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-99192954_high-cropped.jpgIf you love cats but suffer from allergies, don't be discouraged. Here are a few breeds that won't send you running for Benadryl.

Photo Credit: Brenda Carson/Getty Images/Hemera]]>
<![CDATA[Pet of the Week: Charlie]]>Sun, 10 Jul 2016 10:53:03 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/pet+of+the+week+charlie.jpg

Our pet of the week is Charlie, a five-year-old Labrador Retriever, who is looking for his forever home.

Lisa Mendheim with Broward Animal Care stopped by NBC 6 on Sunday with Charlie. She said Charlie is very smart and loyal, and friendly.

Charlie would make a great pet for any family.

If you're interested in Charlie or other animals up for adoption, contact Broward Animal Care at (954) 359-1313.

For more animal news, visit our All About Animals section.



Photo Credit: NBC6.com]]>
<![CDATA[Pa. Firefighters Rescue Fox]]>Mon, 11 Jul 2016 12:12:38 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Soccer+Net+Fox.PNG

A group of local heroes rescued a fox tangled in a soccer net in New Hope, Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

New Hope Eagle Volunteer Firefighters, along with Solebury Township Police and Medic 146 came to the rescue of the fox after its head was stuck in the soccer net.

A video posted on Facebook shows the group cutting the net that appears to be tangled around the animal's head. They then released the fox back into the woods. Take a look at the rescue in the video embedded above.



Photo Credit: New Hope Eagle Volunteer Fire Company
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Md. Woman Kept 66 Dogs in Her Home]]>Sat, 09 Jul 2016 09:38:30 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Katherine+Ting+Tiong+Look+N.jpg

A Maryland woman will spend 180 days in jail for keeping 66 dogs in deplorable conditions in her home.

A district court judge sentenced 47-year-old Katherine Ting Tiong, of Rockville, to more than 16 years in prison with all but 180 days suspended. She also will be placed under three years probation and has been ordered to pay a $1,000 fine. 

The judge said the dogs would have been better off euthanized than continue living in her home.

Ting Tiong was charged earlier this year after police rescued the dogs on New Year’s Day.

The dogs were found in varying levels of distress, according to the Animal Services Division of the Montgomery County Police Department. Many of the animals had dirty fur soaked in urine, infections or suffered from other untreated diseases.

Three of the dogs had to be euthanized, and another also died.

Ting Tiong told authorities she was operating a rescue service called Forever Homes Animal Rescue.

Before sentencing Friday, Ting Tiong told News4's Kristin Wright she had lined up a rescue in New Jersey to pick up 30 of the dogs.

The police investigation officially began after one of the dogs bit a woman at a Potomac pet adoption event in December.

Most of the surviving dogs have been adopted, but some of them are still working through issues with their new families, according to Montgomery County Animal Services and Adoption Center. Three of the dogs are still up for adoption.

To adopt, call 240-773-5900.



Photo Credit: Montgomery County Police]]>
<![CDATA[Burned Dog Recovers, Now Up For Adoption]]>Thu, 07 Jul 2016 23:45:25 -0400https://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/070716+black+lab+burned.jpg

Miami-Dade County Animal Services is asking for the public's help in obtaining information on an injured two-year-old Labrador Retriever mix.

The dog, named Sam, was found on June 28, 2016 by a good Samaritan in the vicinity of SW 164th Street and 149th Avenue with severe injures consistent with burns.

Sam was brought in to the Miami-Dade Animal Services Pet Adoption and Protection Center where he is currently receiving treatment for his injuries and is expected to make a full recovery.

Sam is available for adoption, anyone interested in adopting him and providing him with a forever home should come visit the center at 3599 NW 79 Ave, Doral, FL 33166.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Animal Services by calling 3-1-1.