Monday, February 28, 2011

Remembering the Holidays and Our Trip to the League

Ms. Sherk and 4th graders at the League
Sometimes it takes me awhile to get to everything on my "to do" list.  Today I'm catching up on reading journal entries that students in Ms. Sherk's 4th grade at West Education Center wrote.  Here are excerpts from three of them.

If I were a rescue dog who had to spend Christmas in the animal shelter, I would feel happy because I will be with my dog friends and will be with people and dogs and cats that really, really, really care about us.  TREASURE

The cat room was like a world just made for cats.  JORDYN

Rylie tells Kara  and students what a dog says!

Girls in the cat-room!

My trip to the Washington Animal Rescue League was awesome.  I had a great time and saw  a lot of animals.   I played with Momo, he jumped on my back.  It was the best trip ever.  RAHLEK

Monday, February 21, 2011

Dissection is Not Good Science

The other night I was driving my son, Max, and his friend to a party.  Max's friend mentioned that he was sorry that the unit on dissection was over.   When I asked why, he told me how "cool" it was -- that one group had a pregnant frog, and that they got to see all of the eggs when they opened her up.  He said, too, that he could tell that his frog died while jumping; he knew that to be true by the position of the frog's legs.  Maybe Max's friend will grow up to be a scientist -- maybe not.  My guess is that 99.9 % of the kids in that class learned nothing of real importance from dissecting the frog, the sheep's heart or the chicken wing.   The one sure message that middle school dissection projects continue to give is that animal life is unimportant --  killing thousands of frogs so 12 and 13-year-olds can poke at muscle could  be worth an A.  

Today, Max and I spent a the morning in the cat room at the League.   He's working on a science project trying to determine whether or not gender has any bearing on which paw -- right or left -- is dominant.  The complete results aren't in, but as the official project photographer, I got some cute pictures!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Dogs & Guns -- A Sad Search

I was told that a D.C. police officer shot a Labrador Retriever yesterday.  Apparently the officer felt threatened -- the unleashed dog, Russell, rushed toward him; several shots were fired severely wounding the dog.  While searching for that article http://www.myfoxdc.com/dpp/news/dc/dog-shot-by-dc-police-officer-021511# I found this one -- Kyrgyzstan aims to shoot 10,000 stray dogs in 2011 -- on the WTOP website, reported by the Associated Press  http://www.wtop.com/?sid=2272573&nid= .  This is where I am supposed to write something profound -- my fingers are frozen.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Catapalooza -- A Success!

Owl catching up on her winks.
WOW!!! 27 out of 38 cats received applications during our Catapalooza event. Here's a photo of one of the kitties still waiting for someone to pick her. Maybe one of the new adopters will visit again and take Owl, too. There was so much excitement yesterday; this chubby calico spent a good portion of her day hiding safely in her condo. Today she's comfy and catching up on her beauty sleep.

I think what she needs is a purple bedspread to nap on -- her lovely calico markings will look stunning on a the royal color.  Any empty purple bedspreads out there?  How about royal blue?  Pink might be nice, too.  Or green.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Sampson's Happy Progress Report

When Sampson, an incredibly handsome and sweet dog, came to the League we asked  local emergency responders if they might be interested in adopting him as a working dog. 
Even though Sampson proved to be all play and no work, the team who came to see him recognized his potential.  An all points bulletin went out --
Sampson would make someone or some family an amazing parter for life. He is so willing to please, calm and sure of himself, but not in a pushy or dominant way. He is not high drive enough for detection, but loves to retrieve tennis balls and has a bomb proof temperament. He is gorgeous, inside and out, neutered and healthy except for a very, very slight heart murmur. This dog is special. He needs a great home!!!!!!!! If you know someone looking for an amazing GSD for their home--HERE HE IS.
Sampson has been with us for about a month.   He has graduated to Lacrosse balls. Tennis balls proved to be no match for his powerful jaw! He LOVES to be outside. The snow and cold weather don't seem to bother him at all. He likes the snow a lot! He gladly shares his new bed with Amber (Yellow Lab). He  loves to please. I took him to work with me. He was like the king. EVERYBODY loved him. He spent hours playing with all the officers at the station. 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Magnificent Merlin!

Compfy Merlin?
 Merlin was one of those cats who lived at the League for a long time.  A big bruiser, who liked to hang out, Merlin went unnoticed by potential adopters, but not staff and volunteers.  He was always a favorite.  So, when a loyal League volunteer offered to foster Merlin we all celebrated his move to a temporary home. An appeal on the League's Facebook page struck a chord with a potential adopter, and in no time Merlin moved on to his forever home where he is "doing great," reports his new person.  Being a foster home is not easy -- it's hard not to become so attached that it's impossible to give the animal up.  But, when fosters end up becoming adopters, we lose those foster homes.  Merlin  was lucky to be offered a foster home, and lucky for the League that Merlin's foster person was able, with reservation, to let go.  Maybe she will open up her spare room to another foster cat soon!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The Case of the Missing Earring

I lost one of my very favorite earrings yesterday.   I was walking Nigel and the earring must have slipped off my ear.   I discovered it was gone as soon as we got home.  It's not the end of the world, but I did think -- that given that we walked only two blocks -- Nigel should be able to track the lost earring.  After all, Steven Reinberg's Health Day article Trained Labrador Can Sniff Out Colon Cancer,   http://consumer.healthday.com/Article.asp?AID=649419 details how "specially trained 8-year-old female Labrador retriever named Marine is able to detect colorectal cancer among patients with up to 98 percent accuracy."   I showed Nigel the remaining earring.  I put it right under his nose, and then we retraced our steps -- twice.  No earring.  He stopped several times spending a little extra time sniffing leaves and tires, but the green and orange glass earring was never located.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Sunday, February 13th
for more info
Meet Maraschino!
at Catapalooza.
 Our third annual Catapalooza is a celebration of cats. Cats are the number one animal companion these days. Stop by the League from 12 noon to 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, February 13th and meet all of the wonderful cats available for adoption.   On second thought, come by and visit before Catapalooza; the cats are anxious to move  into their forever homes, no sense waiting another 10 days!