All posts tagged 'Adoption'

Foundation Award to Sanctuary for Senior Dogs

Senior Boxer

It is our great pleasure to tell our readers about one of the latest recipients of financial aid from The Dr. Jane Foundation. This month’s featured award winner is a dedicated group of rescuers committed to improving the lives of abandoned, abused and neglected senior dogs in Ohio.

Founded in 2000, The Sanctuary for Senior Dogs is a non-profit group with a commendable mission … to improve the quality of life of older canines. Unfortunately, the number of people open to adopting older dogs (ages seven and up) pales in comparison to those seeking youthful pups.

With a small staff and core set of daily volunteers, the group also manages a network of 70 additional volunteers who do everything from fostering to fundraising and everything in between.

Sanctuary has no restrictions when it comes to breed, all are welcome. Most of their dogs come from nearby animal shelters in and around Cleveland, where they’re passed over for adoption again and again.

When the non-profit first formed, senior dogs rarely made it out of local shelters. Very few resources were dedicated solely to elder canines or their needs. But now, thanks to Sanctuary’s tireless advocacy, people are increasingly open to the idea of adopting an older animal.

In addition to their rescue efforts, the group also operates a therapy dog program. They visit nursing homes, group homes, activity centers for developmentally disabled people, schools and colleges during finals week, and much more.

Eventually, they hope to build an urban sanctuary that brings together senior citizens and senior dogs. As part of the center, they will offer volunteer services, such as assistance with walking, shopping and other activities associated with caring for senior dogs.

One of their most impressive undertakings is their hospice program, Forever Foster. Canines who will never be adopted because they are too old, too scarred from mental and physical abuse, or suffer from serious health complications (including terminal diseases) are provided care for the remainder of their lives. These desperate cases, commonly referred to as “leftover” dogs, have increasingly become a focus for the group’s energies.

The Sanctuary depends on sponsorships to help offset the costs of long-term care for these dogs. One such senior is Mason, a 10-year-old Pomeranian mix.

When Sanctuary located Mason, he was living in an inner-city pound. Prior to that, he had been surviving by his wits, alone on the streets of Cleveland. He was very afraid and had obvious medical issues. His vision was very poor, but his friendly personality was clear to see.

After being taken into care, Mason lost what little vision he had left. Veterinarians discovered a growth on one of his legs that was hindering his mobility, and that he was suffering from congestive heart failure. Thankfully, the surgery to remove his tumor was successful. However, given his blindness and tenuous medical condition, he's been accepted into the Sanctuary's hospice care program.

Mason
Mason making the most of life thanks to The Sanctuary for Senior Dogs.

Mason has adjusted well to his new surroundings. Thanks to the program, he will always have access to excellent medical care. According to Deborah Workman, Executive Director for Sanctuary, they will also be sure he has "more love than he knows what to do with". She added, "his resilience is an inspiration to everyone who meets him".

When it came time to vote on this funding application, the Foundation’s board was unanimously supportive. Board Director, Dave Mattox said, “As opposed to puppies in shelters, many senior dogs have lived in a home before. Losing a caretaker and then being placed in a rescue can be a terrible shock, and due to their age, it just goes on and on … for months, maybe even years. They desperately want to be back in a familiar environment. When you adopt an older dog, they are almost universally very loving and exceedingly grateful.” He added, “What Sanctuary does, it’s incredibly vital work.”

In response to the award, Workman said, "Thank you from all of us here at the Sanctuary for Senior Dogs for your help in our life-saving work, but most especially, thanks from Mason."

Adopt Senior Dog

If you or someone you know would be interested in adopting a senior dog in Ohio, we strongly encourage you to visit The Sanctuary for Senior Dogs (sanctuaryforseniordogs.org). You never know … you could end up finding your new best friend!

As the charitable arm of Life’s Abundance, The Dr. Jane Foundation provides financial support to small and medium-size rescue groups who work to prevent animal homelessness, abuse and chronic neglect. Every time you purchase a Life's Abundance product, a small donation is made to the Foundation’s operating fund.

And there’s more good news … we are now accepting applications for 2016 funding. If you know of an animal rescue organization that deserves special recognition and financial support, please encourage them to fill out an application

Check back next month for more good news from The Dr. Jane Foundation. Together, we’re making a difference!

Dr Jane Second Chance

Giving Makes the World a Better Place

Rescuing Dogs Makes Life Great

Charitable work is core to our mission of well-being for all. It’s so important to us that every order placed aids homeless animals. This work is done through the non-profit branch of Life’s Abundance, The Dr. Jane Foundation, which provides financial support to small and medium-size rescue groups who work to prevent animal homelessness, abuse and chronic neglect. 

We made this commitment because we understand the need, which is so big, it’s almost hard to comprehend. But, like with all great endeavors, progress is made by focusing on the next task, taking it day by day.

In an era where so many shelters self-identify as “no kill”, it’s shocking to learn that euthanasia is still responsible for the deaths of nearly three million dogs and cats every year. And with between five and seven million entering shelters every year, it’s a percentage that’s way too high. That being said, in 1970, the number of dogs and cats being euthanized was north of 20 million, even though the total pet population was about half what it is today. Obviously, there’s still a lot of work left to do. But it’s incredibly worthwhile work … work that we earnestly, wholeheartedly support.

People involved in rescuing homeless, abused and neglected animals will tell you ... sometimes, their work comes down to doing the best you can when confronted by road blocks on all sides. And so many of the hardships these small non-profits encounter are linked, directly or indirectly, to a chronic lack of funding.

That’s why we dedicate a portion of our profits to our non-profit’s funding reserves. Since 2007, we’ve awarded funding to more than 100 deserving groups!

The rescue groups we support employ strategies that we know are effective. Most of our grant recipients utilize one or more programs that have proven successful in curbing pet overpopulation and reducing the number of pet kids euthanized. These initiatives include low-cost spay and neuter surgeries, TNR (trap-neuter-return) management of feral cat communities, affordable adoption fees, and community education efforts regarding the proper care of companion animals and the dangers of animal abuse and neglect. And all of this is done in addition to the day-to-day activities undertaken by these committed rescuers to place their animals in loving adoptive homes.

Time and time again, we’ve witnessed amazing transformations. Animals who have borne the brunt of cruelty or long-term neglect and yet, still were able to rise above circumstance and make full recoveries. Every new group brings its own stories of triumph in the face of adversity. With so many grant recipients, it’s hard to calculate the exact number of animals helped by our non-profit … but it’s easily in the hundreds, if not thousands!

Faith Before & After
One of the many animals helped by our non-profit, Faith was rescued by SW Collie Rescue. Our 2015 award helped restore her to health after a harrowing abandonment in the middle of the desert.


Just think, simply by shopping with Life’s Abundance, you’re making the world a better place. It’s a rare case where you can do something positive without doing anything different at all. As long as you keep purchasing Life’s Abundance products, you’ll be supporting the cause of rescue. So, while you're focused on your health, the well-being of your family, caring for your own companion animals ... while you're doing all that, you're also making life better for homeless animals and giving a helping hand to the people who operate on the front lines.

And we’ve saved the best news for last. Our Board of Directors just held a quarterly meeting in mid-February, approving grants to the following seven worthy recipients …

- Alchemy Acres Animal Sanctuary of Salem, OH (alchemyacres.org)

- Carol's Ferals of Grand Rapids, MI (carolsferals.org)

- Elinore’s Dream, Inc. of Ft. Pierce, FL (adoptapet.com/elinoresdream)

- Greyhound Hope Rehabilitation and Adoption, Inc. of Cape Coral, FL (greyhoundhope.org)

- The Bailey Project of Jupiter, FL (TheBaileyProject.org)

- The Sanctuary for Senior Dogs of Cleveland, OH (sanctuaryforseniordogs.org)

- Humane Society Pet Rescue Florida of Okeechobee, FL (animalrescueokeechobee.org)

Congratulations to all of these groups for their outstanding efforts!

In the coming months, we will reveal just what these non-profits are able to accomplish with our funding. However much they are able to achieve will be in no small part thanks to all the supporters of The Dr. Jane Foundation.

Are you involved in an animal rescue, or know someone who is? We are currently accepting applications for 2016 funding. Our Board will be considering applications for the next round of funding in April, so try to have completed grant requests submitted by the end of March for immediate consideration.

Check back next month for another update from The Dr. Jane Foundation. Together, we’re making a difference!

Does Coat Color Predict Feline Behavior?

Lovely Cat

Our companion animal’s coat colors, once only the concern of breeders, have now become the focus of research for other characteristics, including behavior. You may have heard reports that white coat color has been linked to deafness in both dogs and cats. Others have suggested a connection between coat color and aggressive behavior in some dog breeds. Now there’s some evidence of an association between feline behavior and coat color. But is there really anything substantial to this claim? 

First, how do cats get their color? Coat-color pattern genes fall into four categories that control spotting, pigment intensity, orange and agouti color switching, and even patterns. Located on the X chromosome, several sex-linked genes are responsible for controlling fur color, such as orange and black. Female cats whose XX sex chromosomes have a genetic predisposition to orange and black fur display a patchwork coat, yielding what are commonly known as tortoiseshell coloring (affectionately referred to as “torties”). Other varieties of this include torbies (tortoiseshell tabbies) and calico mosaics. Male cats can have these coat colors, but only if they are an XXY, which makes male calicos and tortoiseshells extremely rare.

Researchers have also studied whether behavior can be inherited in the cat as well. A series of studies conducted from 1980s to the 1990s showed that cats inherit some levels of sociability from their fathers. They noted that certain aspects of a kitten’s personality remain relatively constant throughout the first few years of life, suggesting a genetic predisposition to personality (Lowe and Bradshaw, 2001). Type of cat breed influences differences in interactions with humans, for example, Siamese cats are more demanding and vocal toward their pet parents when compared with other breeds (Turner and Bateson, 2000).

There are lots of reports about what cat lovers think about the behavior of their cats and how that relates to coat color. Orange cats are thought to be friendly (Delgado et al, 2012), some perceive black cats to be wild and unpredictable (Huntingford, 2009), and still others claim that tortoiseshells have a combination of stubborness, independence and unpredictability (Delgado, Munera, Reevy, 2012). Way back in 1895, veterinarians were quoted as saying torties were ‘not overly affectionate, sometimes even sinister, and most ill-tempered in disposition’ (Huidekoper, 1895). How rude!

Playful Cat

Certainly, there are anecdotal reports of tortoiseshells and calicos being rather...shall we say...feisty, inspiring personality descriptors like ‘tortitude’ and ‘calico crazies’. However, due to the lack of actual research in this area, veterinary behaviorist Elizabeth Stelow and her team of researchers set out to determine whether coat-color can be truly linked to behavior in cats. The four-month survey disguised the fact that coat color was the primary subject, to avoid bias on the part of the responders. Over 1,400 pet parents filled out the survey, and the results just might surprise you!

Pet parents of kitties reported tortoiseshells, calicos, “torbies”, as well as black-and-white and gray-and-white cats, acted more frequently aggressive toward humans in three settings: during everyday interactions, during handling and during veterinary visits. The researchers were surprised that gray-and-white and black-and-white cats were reported as more aggressive in these settings.

But keep in mind … the behaviorists did not independently observe any cats themselves, so the study was completely reliant on the self-reporting of the cats’ guardians. Furthermore, the respondents were people who might have had preconceived notions about their cat’s behavior. This factor could skew the results for the tortie or calico cats, but what about grey-and-white or black-and-white cats?

Lounging Kitty

The study concluded that coat colors may be associated with aggressive behaviors in the cat but that the differences are actually relatively minor. These findings support some common assumptions about personalities associated with different cat color patterns, and can help people better understand their feline companions. Researchers also concluded that the subtlety of the results of this study suggests the need for additional research on the topic of the relationship between coat color and behavior. Anyone considering adopting a pet should pay attention to the behavior of each individual cat they meet, rather than making decisions about cats based on the coat color. I suppose one could honestly say, never judge a book by its color!

How about you? What do you think about the relationship between behavior and coat color in cats? Do you have any experience with calicos or tortoiseshells? Please share in the comment section below - we’d love to hear your stories!

Thank you for all you do to make the world a better place for companion animals.

Dr Jane Bicks  Dr. Jane Bicks, DVM

References

Elizabeth A. Stelow, Melissa J. Bain & Philip H. Kass (2015): The Relationship Between Coat Color and Aggressive Behaviors in the Domestic Cat, Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science, DOI: 10.1080/10888705.2015.1081820
Amat, M., de la Torre, J. L. R., Fatjó, J., Mariotti, V. M., Van Wijk, S., & Manteca, X. (2009). Potential risk factors associated with feline behaviour problems. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 121, 134–139.
Amat, M., Manteca, X., Mariotti, V. M., de la Torre, J. L. R., & Fatjó, J. (2009). Aggressive behavior in the English cocker spaniel. Journal of Veterinary Behavior: Clinical Applications and Research, 4, 111–117.
Bateson, W. (1894). Materials for the study of variation, treated with especial regard to discontinuity in the origin of species. London, England: MacMillan.
Becker, M. (2012). Is there a connection between markings and personality in cats? Retrieved from vetstreet.com/dr-marty-becker/is-there-a-connection-between-markings-and-personality-in-cats.
Dantas-Divers, L. M. S. (2011). Questions about coat color and aggression in cats (author response). Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 239, 1288–1289.
Delgado, M. M., Munera, J. D., & Reevy, G. M. (2012). Human perceptions of coat color as an indicator of domestic cat personality. Anthrozoös, 25, 427–440.
Huidekoper, R. S. (1895). The cat: A guide to the classification and varieties of cats and a short treatise upon their care, diseases, and treatment. New York, NY: D. Appleton.
Huntingford, J. (2009). The color of a cat can determine their personality. Retrieved from petwellbeing.com/ blog/the-color-of-a-cat-can-determine-their-personality.
Kim, Y. K., Lee, S. S., Oh, S. I., Kim, J. S., Suh, E. H., Houpt, K. A. ... Yeon, S. C. (2010). Behavioural reactivity of the Korean native Jindo dog varies with coat colour. Behavioural Processes, 84, 568–572.
Kogan, L. R., Schoenfeld-Tacher, R., & Hellyer, P. W. (2013). Cats in animal shelters: Exploring the common perception that black cats take longer to adopt. Open Veterinary Science Journal, 7, 18–22.
Lowe, S. E., & Bradshaw, J. W. S. (2001). Ontogeny of individuality in the domestic cat in the home environment. Animal Behaviour, 61, 231–237.
McCune, S. (1995). The impact of paternity and early socialisation on the development of cats’ behaviour to people and novel objects. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 45, 109–124.
Meier, M., & Turner, D. C. (1985). Reactions of house cats during encounters with a strange person: Evidence for two personality types. Journal of the Delta Society, 2, 45–53.
Podberscek, A. L., & Serpell, J. A. (1996). The English cocker spaniel: Preliminary findings on aggressive behaviour. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 47, 75–89.
Reisner, I. R., Houpt, K. A., Erb, H. N., & Quimby, F. W. (1994). Friendliness to humans and defensive aggression in cats: The influence of handling and paternity. Physiology & Behavior, 55, 1119–1124.
Webb, A. A., & Cullen, C. L. (2010). Coat color and coat color pattern-related neurologic and neuro-ophthalmic diseases. Canadian Veterinary Journal, 51, 653–657.

Our Foundation Announces New Round Of Funding

Dog and cat

Charitable work is core to our mission of well-being for all. It’s so important to us that every order placed aids homeless animals.

As the charitable arm of Life’s Abundance, The Dr. Jane Foundation provides financial support to small and medium-size rescue groups who work to prevent animal homelessness, abuse and chronic neglect.

We dedicate a portion of our profits from the sale of Life’s Abundance products into our non-profit’s funding reserves. In the span of several years, we’ve awarded funding to nearly 100 groups! More...

Foundation Award to Forte Animal Rescue

Whiskey

It’s time once again for an update from our non-profit charity, The Dr. Jane Foundation. This month, we’re excited to share news of another financial award to a noble group of rescuers based in Marina del Rey, CA. Founded in 2002, Forte Animal Rescue received their first grant from our non-profit in 2011, so this recent application allowed us to see how this group has flourished over the last four years.

Staffed solely by volunteers, this small non-profit has big aspirations. Not only do they save dogs of all sizes and shapes (and the occasional cat, too), they devote considerable time and energy to improving their community with education initiatives while also working to stem the tide of pet overpopulation. Forte rescuers pride themselves in providing a 100% no-kill safety net for abused, neglected and abandoned canines. More...

Grant Award Feeds Michigan Cats

Family sitting with cat

It’s time once again for an update from our charitable wing, The Dr. Jane Foundation. This month, we’re excited to share news of another financial award to an amazing group of caregivers based in Highland, MI. Founded in late 2004, Community Sharing is an outreach organization that provides support and food assistance to hundreds of families and their companion animals. More...

Foundation Award to SW Collie Rescue

Shasta

More good news from our non-profit charity, The Dr. Jane Foundation. This month, we’re excited to reveal another financial award, this time to an amazing group of rescuers based in New Mexico. A breed-specific rescue group, this organization places abandoned collies and Shetland sheepdogs with foster homes until appropriate adoptive families can be located.

Founded in 2001, the rescue has grown to handle incoming dogs from New Mexico, Texas and Arizona. Thanks to the working relationships they’ve cultivated with other shelters and rescue groups in this tri-state area, they are able to locate and save dogs according to their breed-specific mission. For example, last year when a massive hoarding situation was uncovered by law enforcement in Tomball, TX, SW Collie Rescue helped with the intake (147 collies were saved). More...

Grant Award Helps Cat Sanctuary

Kat Barn Kitties

Most of the rescue organizations who receive funding from our non-profit spend the majority of their energies trying to find loving homes for the animals they've saved. The harsh reality is, despite these heroic efforts, some animals will never be adopted.

In the last couple of decades, there’s been a dramatic drop in the rates of euthanasia. One of the consequences of more humane treatment by shelters is that the same animals who would’ve been put down are now living long lives, thanks to significant advances in veterinary medicine. Providing for their physical and emotional care can be costly, and divert resources from homing efforts. More...

Foundation Award to TLC Humane Society

Bootsy

We’re delighted to share news of another grant awarded by The Dr. Jane Foundation. This month’s featured recipient is the Dahlonega Lumpkin County Humane Society (aka, TLC Humane Society), a devoted group of rescuers wholly committed to saving the lives of dogs and cats in Georgia.

Based in the town of Dahlonega, the TLC Humane Society is the only no-kill, non-profit shelter in town. They maintain both a physical shelter facility and a foster-care program. The shelter is nestled on six beautiful acres and features a ‘Puppy Palace’ with room for pups to roam and rest. More...

Foundation Award to Greyhound Pet Adoption Northwest

Passn

It gives us immense delight to announce yet another financial award given by Dr. Jane’s Foundation, this time to Greyhound Pet Adoption Northwest. The mission of the Oregon-headquartered rescue is to find responsible, loving homes for Greyhounds who no longer participate in dog racing or who are simply in need of a good home. More...