Thousands of animals were saved thanks to your support!
FiXiT’s key accomplishments in 2012 include:
Final Fix Project on St. Croix:
- Provided 2000 total surgeries.
- Increased demand for spay/neuter 1000%.
- Implemented a mobile spay/neuter program supported by the local humane society, vet community, and visiting volunteer vet program.
- Facilitated 1000 surgeries.
- Registered over 10,000 GetYourFix.org users.
- Providing spay/neuter information to over 20,000 people per month.
We have even bigger expectations for 2013, including a new and improved GetYourFix and the implementation of our Final Fix methodology at a second, stateside location. Our goal is to fix over 3500 cats and dogs in 2013 and build the community infrastructure to increase demand for spay/neuter all over.
Be a part of these exciting developments by making a contribution on this last day of 2012! It’s easy – Got to our Donate page to take advantage of four donation options to fit any budget.
The halls have been decked, ugly sweater parties are in full swing, and stockings have been hung by the chimney with care. This holiday season, the FiXit Blog would like to remind readers of a few holiday-related hazards for dogs—and how you can avoid them to share a happy and healthy holiday season with your furry friends.
- Decorations are fun and festive, but poinsettia, holly, and mistletoe can be poisonous to pets. Be sure to keep these plants, as well as any pine needles and tree water, out of your animals’ reach.
- Place shiny ornaments, tinsel, and garlands (especially those made from popcorn and cranberries) higher up on your tree, away from your pooch.
- Tape all wires down to floors and/or walls so that your animals cannot chew on them.
- Holiday feasts are abundant, but rich food scraps or sweets can make dogs ill. Bones from human food also pose hazards to dogs and can splinter in their stomach. As a safe alternative, give your dog a special treat—one that’s made specifically for dogs.
- A walk is a great way to spend time with your canine companion and provide both of you with exercise. In wintry weather, consider providing your pooch some extra protection from the cold with a coat or sweater, especially if your dog is short-haired. After walks, wipe your dog’s legs, stomach, and paws to clean off any salt, antifreeze, or chemicals that can he or she may ingest through licking himself. These chemicals, as well as ice, may also irritate paws.
The holidays are a great time to show your loved ones, especially furry ones, just how special they are. Keeping them safe and comfortable is an ideal way to do so, plus a present or two is always appreciated.
Wishing you a bright holiday season and happy new year!
A cute pair: Juju, Aube’s pet rat, with a foster, Sputnik
Many animal lovers in this economy cannot afford to expand their four-legged families. But Aube found a solution to that dilemma when she started volunteering with Fix Our Ferals in the fall of 2010 after reading one of the organization’s flyers. Founded in 1998, Fix Our Ferals is a San Francisco Bay Area non-profit that focuses on Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR), helping reduce the number of homeless and feral cats through their spay/neuter program.
A firm believer that a pet is a lifelong commitment, Aube decided to foster kittens until she felt better able to take on the financial responsibility of pet guardianship. Fostering kittens has not only given her great joy but provided her with an education regarding the problem of pet overpopulation and the scarcity of good homes. When Aube started fostering, friends and family warned the tender-hearted vegetarian that she would get too attached to give up her charges. Instead, Aube located permanent homes for the first two cats she fostered. She has also orchestrated several subsequent adoptions. Aube also credits the Milo Foundation for allowing her to bring two kittens to one of their mobile adoptions.
Kittens who are rescued early enough can become good pets through intensive socialization. Knowing the kittens are well socialized when they leave her care increases the odds they will find permanent homes. To aid in this process, Aube routinely hosts “kitten parties,” inviting friends to come and interact with the felines. While sharing her flat with a constant stream of kittens (no more than two at any given time) has been great fun for Aube, she hopes for a day when TNR and spay/neuter programs negate the need for her services. Whether they live on the street or land in a shelter, the lives of homeless and feral cats are too often cut short. On the street, they are subject to illness, hunger, loneliness and abuse. In shelters, they have little or no time to find new homes.
“Pet overpopulation is a problem we’ve created and it creates suffering. Domestic animals are primarily suited to live with people so we need to limit their offspring to what’s maintainable for humans.” Through her volunteerism, Aube proves that there are many ways to enjoy and care for animals without being a full-time guardian to one pet. If you or someone you know loves animals but is not in a position to adopt, please consider fostering through a local shelter or a favorite rescue organization.
photo credit: lenz art via photopin cc
Diamond with Santa
Every year I have the tradition of going to a local box pet store on December 26 to bulk up on toys for my dog and two cats at a deep discount – enough to last the whole year. As a result, today you can find a sun-faded Santa squeaky toy in my yard from last year, leftover from a good bout of toss with Diamond. I am guilty of being thrifty, but this is how I give my animals their (post-)Christmas presents.
A new survey out of the U.K. paints the picture of how important it is for us to give gifts to our furry family members during our Christmas celebrations. Here are some highlights:
- At least 75% of pet-owners buy gifts for their four-legged friends
- Some 66% spend more on a pet than a partner
- Average spend is £38 ($61)
This is not surprising, as national spending
on our fur-babies continues to increase. In 2011, Americans spent $51 billion on all animal expenses. Our average annual budget for toys is $43 for dogs and $21 for cats; for treats, we spend $73 for our dogs and $41 for our cats.
What is surprising: the majority of people spend more on their pets than their partners! A pet-centered society recognizes and rewards the unconditional love our animal best friends give us.
Will you be giving your animals gifts?
photo credit: Justin Beckley via photopin cc
One 12-year old girl in Witchita is taking the BLACK in Black Friday literally to call attention to the struggle that black dogs face when looking for new homes. On the busiest shopping day of the year, Madison Bell will help her local animal shelter, Kansas Humane Society, host a Black Dog Adoption Drive, an event geared toward getting more black animals out of shelters and into loving homes.
Dogs and cats that are black, seniors, handicapped, or just a little different find it the most challenging to find forever homes. I have discussed some of the challenges specific to black cats before. Superstitions, abundance, difficulty showing facial expressions, and difficulty to photograph all contribute to “Black Dog Syndrome” for these stealthy fur-babies. In response, Madison created a Black Dog Club, which she launched last month as her Girl Scout Silver Award project. She has raised awareness and funds to help the animals in her shelter.
To celebrate black dogs, consider sponsoring the spay or neuter for a member of this ninja set profiled on GetYourFix.org. Here are 3 excellent candidates:
photo credit: bkcasteel via photopin cc
After a big win for ending puppy mills in L.A. recently, this week Ohio’s Breeder Bill (Senate Bill 130) is heading to the full House for a vote, possibly today, after being approved in the Senate back in February. This bill has long been in development and has gone through several revisions even in the last year. What has resulted is an increase in regulation of “high-volume breeders,” defined as an establishment that keeps, houses, and maintains adult breeding dogs that produce at least nine litters of puppies in any given calendar year and, in return for a fee or other consideration, sells sixty or more adult dogs or puppies per calendar year.
This bill will hold puppy mill operators accountable by the Department of Agriculture in following several requirements:
(1) licenses for a period of 1, 3, or 5 years,
(2) limited background checks,
(3) record keeping,
(4) insurance with specified limits depending on the number of dogs,
(5) procedures for inspections,
(6) identification of breeders, retailers and prior owners that is to be provided to consumers, or alternatively, health certificates to be provided to purchasers, and
(7) inclusion of vendor numbers on ads for the sale of a dog.
While it creates a commercial dog breeding oversight board to provide oversight and evaluation of the administration of the law, it as been accused of having minimal regulatory power and insufficient penalties for making an impact on puppy mills. It also does nothing to address smaller volume breeders, which at less than 9 litter per year is still significant, a category which many backyard breeders may fall into. Visit Animal Low Coalition’s critical review of the bill (from an anti-puppy mill perspective) for more details.
Is it progress? YES. Is it enough? Definitely not.
UPDATE 11/15/12: The bill passed through the House with a vote of 89-5.
“This is an industry that’s gone unchecked for too long in Ohio,” Rep. Teresa Fedor (D., Toledo) said.
Now the bill has to go back to the Senate, after being revised in the House. After a post-Thanksgiving vote, we can hopefully put regulations for standard care and accountability in place in Ohio, one of the most popular locations for puppy mill operators.
photo credit: Brian Hathcock via photopin cc
Is there anything more depressing than seeing a senior dog or cat looking for a new home? It is hard not to project human feelings to their clearly sad faces. Their life has been completely turned upside down. Years worth of experiences, relationships, and routines are distant memories as and they sit on a cold floor wondering what happened and what they did wrong.
Senior animals are one of those groups that provide a real challenge when it comes to finding a new home. November is National Senior Pet Month. It is a time to consider opening your home to a senior dog or cat that needs a new beginning later in life. Petfinder features nearly 10,000 senior dogs and 6000 senior cats that are searching for homes.
One inspirational idea to promote senior animal adoption is “Seniors for Seniors.” This is a concept being implemented all over the country to provide companionship for seniors looking for a friendly and gentle animal, while promoting the adoption of overlooked senior animals.
PAWS lists these benefits for Seniors for Seniors:
- Research tells us that companion animals, such as cats and dogs, can help improve our physical and mental health. By adopting and spending time with a animal friend, you can experience the benefits of lowered stress levels and blood pressure.
- Cats and dogs provide friendship for lonely individuals, and open opportunities for interacting with others which an older person may miss if family is far away.
- The company of a beloved pet has been proven to reduce depression.
- The quiet and doting home of a senior citizen, is the perfect match for an older animal looking for a new home.
- Senior animals are often gentler, calmer companionship, and often are already trained.
No matter what your age, there are many great reasons to prefer a senior dog when adding to your clan. Find a senior animal at your local shelter or at one of many organizations across the country that dedicate themselves specifically to finding new homes for senior animals.
photo credit: PMBDigitalFoto via photopin cc
Election fever is sweeping the nation as the candidates take center stage. With most political conversations focusing on the budget, health care, and taxes, I dedicate this post to a less controversial yet still significant part of our nation’s political history – presidential pets.
Bo Obama (pictured) is America’s current First Dog an important member of the First Family. Referred to by Michelle Obama as “her son,” Bo is involved in official White House business such as the ‘Let’s Move!’ initiative to promote physical activity, the annual Easter Egg Roll, and the White House holiday décor.
Other first furry friends include Socks, the Clintons’ cat; Buddy, the Clintons’ dog; Barney, George W. and Laura Bush’s Scottish terrier; Misty, the Carters’ cat; Gerald and Betty Ford’s dog, Liberty; Falla, FDR’s terrier; and Lyndon B. Johnson’s two beagles named Him and Her.
A new book titled “Pets at the White House” by Jennifer Boswell Pickens, profiles the famous animal companions at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. The book includes a foreword by former first lady Barbara Bush who shares, “Not only are these animals important to each first family, but, as George points out, when you have the toughest job in the world, there is nothing like the unconditional love of a dog.” Well said.
The Los Angeles City Council voted 13-2 Wednesday to ban pet stores from selling dogs, cats and rabbits purchased from commercial breeders.
People can still purchase pets directly from breeders, just not in stores, which will be able to obtain non-breeder stock from the city’s animal shelters or humane societies registered with the city’s Department of Animal Services.
City Councilmen Bill Rosendahl and Mitchell Englander cast the dissenting votes.
City Councilman Paul Koretz introduced the measure earlier this year with the intention of shutting down puppy and kitten mills and reducing the tens of thousands of euthanizations performed on unclaimed animals each year. The city euthanized more than 21,000 dogs, cats and rabbits in each of the last two fiscal years—about 37 percent of the animals impounded.
In a Patch poll, 63 percent of voters approved of the ban while 30 percent disapproved, saying rescue pets need a home but there shouldn’t a ban against buying animals from commercial breeders in pet stores.
Pet shops and other retailers will have six months before the law goes into effect. The penalty for violating the ban will start at $250 for a first offense and goes up to $1,000 for a third strike.
Companion Animal Protection Society West Coast Director Carole Raphaelle Davis said the law would help end “the blood money contracts between puppy mill owners who abuse animals and L.A. pet retailers.”
“We are relieved that finally, the cries of L.A.’s shelter animals have been heard. Puppy mills and cruel pet factories will fade into history at last,” Davis said.
photo credit: pamlau.com via photopin cc
FiXiT is dedicated to solving the companion animal crisis, but we couldn’t do it without the support from generous donors, foundations, and compassionate companies. Therefore, we were delighted when an online ad network, BuySellAds.com, contacted us about taking a day to promote FiXiT and our mission as a cause they support.
On October 25, FiXiT will receive 50% of BuySellAds.com’s profit! Learn more about the promotion here.
Why FiXiT? Many of the employees have dogs at BuySellAds, as you can see, and the issue of animal overpopulation is one close to their hearts. The even have a doggy team captain, BuySellAds founder’s dog, Rusty. So what better animal charity than FiXiT to benefit from their charitably outreach, an organization dedicated exclusively to bringing spay and neuter to everyone?
BuySellAds is advertising software and services company for both advertisers and publishers that represents over 3,000 websites to advertisers. These guys mean business, selling over 6 billion ad impressions each month. They provide support for a diverse media strategy, including among others display ads, sponsored tweets, email newsletters, and text links. If you are thinking of buying or selling ads on your website, consider getting started on OCTOBER 25.
Your new business relationship will help FiXiT save animals by preventing unwanted litters of kittens and puppes.
Thanks, BuySellAds, for your support!!
UPDATE: The day was a huge success. BuySellAds raised over $3500 for FiXiT to use for ending companion animal overpopulation! Thanks again for your generous sponsorship, BuySellAds! You guys rock!!!