There are a lot of dogs, and bicycles in San Francisco. I've seen both on BART. When you live in a big urban city, using public transportation makes a lot of sense. You can travel a great distance fast and cheap, but you have to give up personal space and share the bus, train or trolley with others.
I like this part. I enjoy experiencing the sights and sounds of it all, even when it makes me uncomfortable. It's real life. It's also temporary. When I read in the NY Times about dogs riding the subway in New York illegally, I thought about the dogs I've seen here on Muni.
"Aren't you the nice dog..." on the J Church, San Francisco, CA.
If the dog is well-behaved why should it be a problem?
Once upon a time man chose to create dog breeds that mostly served a purpose, such as hunting, herding and protecting. These dogs worked for the farmer and the aristocrat.
Industrialization and the increase of dogs as companions had people altering the features of dogs purely for looks. Form no longer followed function.
From Atlas Obscura, "Dalmatians most likely originated in Croatia, with the first discernible depictions dating to the early 17th century. (“Dalmatia” is a coastal region of Croatia.) Early uses of the dog varied; it seems the first Dalmatians were all-purpose dogs, sometimes used for hunting, sometimes for guard dogs, sometimes for companions.
Their use as firehouse dogs emerged in the 19th century in the U.S., where it was discovered that Dalmatians have a natural affinity with horses. Fire engines at the time were horse-drawn, and Dalmatians proved very capable of trotting alongside and in front of the engines to clear a path and find the way to a fire."
Today our relationship with dogs continues its evolution. Now it seems we have more blended dogs than pure bred, and many more countries and societies seeing dogs as members of the family. We also have an incredible increase in the use of dogs as service animals.
I hope these trends continues. Sure, certain dog breeds will still be used primarily for singular jobs, but I like that we are seeing a wider embrace of all dogs.
If we continue to focus more on our unique relationship and bond with dogs and less on manipulating a dog's genetics, then we reflect a humaneness that shows our own positive evolution.
Merry Christmas, peace and joy to the world. Let's hold our loved ones close, especially all the dogs we love. I plan to spend some of my holidays thinking about goals for the new year, including how I can help more people understand why senior dogs rule, and therefore adopt or foster them.
You'll also find me snuggling with every dog that will let me. Will this be the year we welcome a new furry buddy? Let's see!
The desire for dog meat is waning and the practice of consuming dogs as food will end, thanks to positive influence of the social media. Fifty seven dogs were rescued from a dog meat farm in South Korea by Humane Society International (HSI) arrived at the San Francisco SPCA on March 16.
Nearly 60 dogs were taken and the HSI destroyed the cages.
In this image, HSI consultant Lola Webber removes a dog from his cage for transport to the U.S. (Manchul Kim/AP Images for Humane Society International)
Once the animals were evaluated and treated for any medical issues, HSI worked with its Emergency Placement Partners East Bay SPCA, Marin Humane Society and Sacramento SPCA to find the dogs homes.
(Manchul Kim/AP Images for Humane Society International)
Jen Chung, Vice Chair of the SF SPCA Board of Directors: “These incredible animals have survived unthinkable conditions and suffering as part of the dog meat industry. They deserve to spend the rest of their lives in loving homes. We are honored to be part of this project, which will increase awareness of the cruel dog meat industry. Ultimately, we’re hoping to completely end the practice of consuming dogs as food.”
HSI worked with the farm owner to remove the dogs from miserable conditions and close its doors for good. As part of the plan, he signed an agreement with HSI to shut down the property and move into a permanent, humane trade in crop farming. HSI provided assistance to make the transition possible and will follow the farmer’s progress to ensure compliance.
HSI, the international affiliate of The Humane Society of the United States, is working to reduce the dog meat trade in Asia, including South Korea where dogs are farmed for the trade – and where the 2018 Winter Olympics will be held. HSI will work with other dog farmers who agree to get out of the inhumane dog meat trade permanently and transition into trades like crop growing.
(Manchul Kim/AP Images for Humane Society International)
As someone who believes strongly that how we treat animals is a reflection on our humanity, this was one of my favorite stories of the year. The world is changing and with the growth of economies in other countries, as well as education, more people are appreciating the power of the human animal bond. You see more people in Korea and China wanting dogs as members of the family and companions.
I'm glad to see animal protection groups include issues like dog meat farms as part of their focus, and hopefully more good will come of this over the next two years leading up to the 2018 Winter Olympics.
Ready to have your heart grow three sizes? Grateful Dogs Rescue is hosting a big adoption event in San Francisco this Saturday, December 12! Lots of wonderful adoptable dogs and your chance to donate to a very important local nonprofit. Veterinary Street Outreach Services provide free veterinary services and supplies to the animal companions of homeless San Franciscans.
Vet SOS provides free veterinary care to the companion animals of homeless San Franciscans and links their human guardians with health care services. Operating since 2001, Vet SOS is a project of SFCCC's Street Outreach Services (SOS) program.
What We Do:
Vet SOS provides free pop-up veterinary clinics 12 times per year using volunteer staffing and a specially equipped mobile outreach van.
How We Do It:.
By going directly to homeless people - meeting them on their own turf - the Vet SOS team builds relationships of trust and breaks down the barriers that keep homeless people and their companion animals from the care they need and deserve.
If you're wondering how you can help the dogs you love, or other companion animals over the holidays, you're in luck! Our friends at the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has this great infographic, and these four tips:
1. Adopt, Don’t Shop
Make adoption your first option this holiday season! Avoid buying anything from pet stores that sell puppies because most of them come from puppy mills. Search for local adoptable animals by visiting www.ASPCA.org/adopt
2. Help Local Shelters
Help your local shelter by volunteering your time or finding out what supplies they need. You can also win a grant for your local shelter by entering our "Home for the Holidays" contest with Dogist and Subaru at www.ASPCA.org/holiday
3.Have a More Humane Holiday Meal
If you eat meat, eggs, or dairy, look for certifications that require better treatment for animals on farms, specifically Certified Humane, Animal Welfare Approved, and GAP (Levels 2 and above). Visit www.ASPCA.org/labels to view a label guide and get useful tips and info on how to have a more humane holiday
4. Host a Holiday Sweet Swap
Consider hosting a holiday bake sale at your office or with friends and family and donate the proceeds to help animals in need. Find out how to start your fundraiser at www.ASPCA.org/SweetSwap
Do you have your own special holiday traditions? I'd love to read about them in the comments.
Celebrate the season by joining the San Francisco SPCA and Macy's for the 29th annual Holiday Windows event. The window displays feature adorable – and adoptable – cats and dogs who need loving homes. This tradition is one of the most beloved symbols of the holiday spirit in San Francisco.
On November 20, at 5 p.m., the Windows, inspired by the golden anniversary of the classic holiday animated special “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” will be unveiled on the corner of Stockton and O'Farrell Streets by Snoopy, this year’s special guest.
Here in the Bay Area, our compassionate response to pet overpopulation and to finding homes for "less adoptables" like senior dogs has been admirable. I've been a supporter of Muttville Senior Dog Rescue for many years, and the incredible Lily's Senior Dog Sanctuary in Marin County for the past couple of years.
For all that is available to animals in the Bay Area, more awareness about non-euthanasia options is needed. This Sunday, November 1, as part of a group of short films on KQED Truly CA you will meet an elderly couple in the North Bay giving dogs, cats, and horses, the chance to live out their lives with dignity rather than be euthanized because of age or disability.
Last Stop in Santa Rosa
An elderly couple in Santa Rosa runs a hospice for dying animals that creates an alternative to pet euthanasia. Without a voice to decide their own fates, these aging and disabled animals rely on humans to make the best choice for them.
Tune into San Francisco’s KQED 9 on Sunday, November 1st at 6pm PT to watch this short documentary by Elizabeth Lo, in the Truly CA episode: Truly CA Shorts: State of Discovery, which features five short films exploring the California experience.
Guess who is famous for both her beautiful voice, and for her love of dogs? Hint: bet she didn't sing the blues when her dogs were nearby...
This year marks the 100th birthday of the legendary Billie Holiday. When you look at the many photos of Lady Day with her dogs, you can see what a positive influence they had over her. I bet they provided a wonderful companionship, especially given the era she lived in as a professional singer. Dogs don't discriminate or care about your looks or color, they just love you.
This photo above is from a 1949 cover story for Ebony magazine, and it shows Ms. Holiday at home in her Harlem apartment cooking a steak with Mister, who is probably making sure it stays rare! The photo below is the two of them listening to records together.
Eleanora Fagan, professionally known as Billie Holiday, was an American jazz musician and singer-songwriter. Nicknamed "Lady Day" by her friend and music partner Lester Young, Holiday had a seminal influence on jazz music and pop singing. Wikipedia
Do you have any favorite musicians who were dog lovers?
During National Walk Your Dog Week, this article had us thinking about how to encourage people to walk their dog. Our brains know walking together is good for both of us, but sometimes that isn't enough to get us out the door.
Pet obesity, along with humans, is a real issue. It's easy to get into the habit of staying curled up inside, or letting our dog nap the day away.
We decided to ask this question on our Facebook page, and one great answer came from Kathleen:
Some spoke of the simple joy of exploring the outdoors together, while others saw the clear health benefit.
I loved going on dog walks with Cleo. Besides the obvious exercise, it was fun to see the neighborhood through her eyes. We had some adventures together that felt like we were Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer. Mischief with a big dog in the city is not to be missed!
Read more via Companion Animal Psychology and tell me, what motivates you? Is it a welcoming outdoor space, the desire for some exercise together, or ???
In the 1950s, the Edison Electric Institute in the US decided to sponsor researchers to investigate the effects of electrical currents on the heart.
Enter Guy Knickerbocker, a fastidious, 29-year-old graduate working under electrical engineer William Kouwenhoven in one of the labs at Johns Hopkins University in Maryland. They were trying to improve the external defibrillator, which Kouwenhoven had invented a few years earlier.
In 1958, before the ethical treatment of animals became a serious consideration, their experiments involved testing on laboratory dogs.
Knickerbocker, now 86 years old, remembers working with a colleague one day when, suddenly, one of the dogs went into cardiac arrest, or ventricle fibrillation (VF).
Normally when this happened, they would use a defibrillator to shock the dog's heart back into rhythm - but that day they were in the lab on the 12th floor and the equipment was on the fifth floor.
"People sometimes come by and dump dogs out here, leaving them to starve. So, we started feeding them, letting them in, taking them to the vet to get them spayed and neutered. We made a place for them to live."
"One day I was out and I seen this guy with a tractor who attached these carts to pull rocks. I thought, 'Dang, that would do for a dog train,'" said Bostick. "I'm a pretty good welder, so I took these plastic barrels with holes cut in them, and put wheels under them and tied them together."
And with that, the dog train was born.
"Whenever they hear me hooking the tractor up to it, man, they get so excited," said Bostick. "They all come running and jump in on their own. They're ready to go."
I firmly believe in the power of social media and it's ability to positively influence people. It isn't hard to find examples of how more people are seeing how wonderful older dogs are, and choosing to adopt a senior dog. You can also find more young people gaining awareness of how the human-animal bond can have a positive impact on their life.
Having participated in this wonderful event before, I am thrilled this year that with the help of their school teachers, young animal lovers will be encouraged to join in this year's Remember Me Thursday.
Next week, the Helen Woodward Animal Center will once again unite with animal welfare proponents and organizations worldwide for the 3rd Annual Remember Me Thursday® candle-lighting ceremony. This year, however, the event is reaching an even younger group of animal-lovers.
“Only 30% of pets in US homes come from rescue facilities,” stated Mike Arms. “Lighting a candle this September 24th will bring awareness to these wonderful orphan pets and can help in increasing adoptions and decreasing euthanasia.”
The program that asks participants to light candles on the exact same day globally to honor the millions of pets who lost their lives over the past year without the benefit of a loving home, has extended its reach into local schools with new lesson plans and heartwarming art projects. Helen Woodward Animal Center invites the community to share these materials with classrooms and kid-focused social groups and then take part at scheduled ceremonies or online Thursday, September 24th, 2015.