Michele C. Hollow created the blog Pet News and Views, a blog that focuses on animal welfare—mostly the positive side of animal welfare. She believes that by opening readers to the positive side of animal welfare, they can get the whole picture of the issues.
Pet News and Views is a source for pet owners and admirers of wildlife. Her blog focuses on pet care, wildlife issues, profiles of people who work with animals, laws affecting animals, and stories about pets and wildlife. Michele takes a journalistic approach to these stories.
Michele wrote the book, “The Everything Guide to Working with Animals,” (Adams Media), and has worked as a journalist for 15 years. Her byline has appeared in the NY Times, NY Daily News, Newsday, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Star-Ledger, Pet Product News, womansday.com, and other national publications. She is listed as an expert at dogtime.com.
Michele lives in South Orange, NJ, with her husband, Steven; son, Jordon, and their cat, Mr. Earl Gray.
What is your idea of perfect happiness? Oh, there are so many things. On a day-to-day level, I love spending time with my family and friends and being surrounded by animals. We often go to the dog park for fun. On a global level, I would love to see a world with respect for all creatures.
If you could come back as a dog or a cat, which one would it be & why?
The best compliment I ever received was from a former roommate of mine. She said that if there is such a thing as reincarnation, she wants to come back as one of my cats. I love dogs, but I would come back as a cat—and hopefully a cat to a great family.
What is your pets most treasured possession? Earl loves his FURminator. I don’t want this to sound like an advertisement, but when I take it out, he purrs, and gets all happy. I’ve brought him lots of catnip toys too, and he likes those too. He loves curling up on a warm lap. And for cats, they think they own humans—so my lap is one of his favorite possessions! He also loves to sit on my desk and block the computer screen when I’m working. So he loves my desk too. Or should I say, his desk.
Your proudest achievement so far? I started this blog about 15 months ago, and have been getting positive responses from some of my heroes in the field. One of my favorite nonprofits is Hope For Paws. They occasionally tell their followers to read Pet News and Views. I also got a comment on my site from Will Travers, the head of the Born Free Foundation, complimenting my site. I love getting feedback from readers, and love hearing from my heroes. I also like writing about issues that make a difference for animals and people. I just wrote about the ill effects of cat contraceptives for feral cat populations. I really wanted this to be a positive story, but my research found that we are just not there yet. The best form of feral cat control, and we greatly need this, is TNR (Trap Neuter Return). So this story warns people not to use this product.
Who are your heroes in real life? I have so many. Eldad Hagar and Audrey Spilker Hagar are outside almost every day rescuing strays. They are amazing people. I love Judy Fridano—she’s Ricochet’s mom. Ricochet is the famous surfing dog who raises money for kids with brain injuries and other terrible disabilities. She is a true hero because she never focuses on herself. She gives all of the credit to Ricochet.
And I am in awe of the people who work on behalf of animal welfare. I’ve met so many, and that is what keeps Pet News and Views going. I get so excited covering these stories. The pet and wildlife community are made up of so many wonderful people who are making a difference in the lives of animals. I am grateful that I can report on what they are doing. It energizes me.