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Happy Father’s Day (from Janet)

Just-Do-Something.org Janet Bovitz Sandefur Animal Advocacy Animal Welfare

A parent doesn’t have to be human to be a great Dad to their kids.

Dads, in general, do the following:

  • They defend their family
  • They protect their young
  • They provide food and shelter
  • They stand guard
  • They stay close
  • They instill survival
  • They encourage independence
  • They teach by example
  • They comfort
  • They reprimand
  • They provide structure
  • They play with their children

Dad’s are role models.

They leave us their legacy, their DNA.

Without Dads, life could not be created.  We wouldn’t exist.

We need to protect Dad’s of ALL species – yep, they’re that important.

Here’s to being a Dad, and here’s to having a Dad – no matter WHOSE Dad we are talking about;
they ALL matter.

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Happy Father’s Day!

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Happy Birthday To Me (From Janet)

ust-Do-Something.org Janet Bovitz Sandefur Animal Advocacy Animal Welfare

Today is my birthday.

Lord, thank you for giving me the compassion that motivates me to want to make a difference every day, for those that cannot speak for, or defend, themselves.

Thank you for giving me the strength to keep moving forward in my animal advocacy goals, no matter what the roadblocks.

Thank you for a healthy body and mind, that I can keep fighting the good fight, no matter what comes my way.

Thank you for opening my eyes and giving me life’s ups and downs, so I can see what truly matters in life.

Thank you for my personality – I am that larger than life, louder than everyone in the room, outspoken, take charge, fearless, thick-skinned, just jump in, JUST DO SOMETHING person when needed.

Thank you for the loving support and encouragement of my wonderful family, friends, and fellow advocates.

Thank you for blessing me with a very understanding husband.

Thank you for another beginning of a year where I promise to continue to make a difference.

Happy Birthday to me.

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Be A ‘Little More in 2019 (From Janet)

 

Animal Advocacy Blog Picture Janet Bovitz Sandefur just-do-something.org

Happy, wonderful New Year!

People have such good intentions this time of year when it comes to making those New Year’s resolutions.

“I will go to the gym every day and lose that weight.”

“I will donate 15% of my salary to a charity.”

“I will have less clutter at home.”

But often, the grander promises get pushed back, and before you know it, another whole year has passed and you find yourself making those same resolutions again.

This year, why not try something on a smaller scale, but possibly way more impacting – why not try “a little more”.

This New Year, I will try:

“to be A Little More kinder.”

“to be A Little More compassionate.”

“to be A Little More grateful.”

“to be A Little More freer with my time.”

“to be A Little More giving of myself.”

“to be A Little More tolerant.”

“to be A Little More patient.”

“to be A Little More empathetic.”

“to be A Little More generous.”

“to be A Little More helpful.”

This New Year, I will try:

“to be A Little More LESS selfish.”

“to be A Little More LESS caring.”

“to be A Little More LESS excuse-making.”

“to be A Little More LESS involved.”

“to be A Little More LESS self-absorbed.”

“to be A Little More LESS fearful.”

“to be A Little More LESS of a procrastinator.”

…“to be A Little More.”

You just never know who YOU are making a difference for, when you just try a little more.

Just Do Something…a little more.

YOUR ‘Little More is up to you. But YOU can do it. We ALL can.

It’s YOUR New Year. How will YOU be making it count for an animal in need this year?

Want some suggestions to help animals in need?  HERE YOU GO!

Think it, then do it – every day. It matters.

Happy New Year!

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Because Christmas is coming, again (From Janet)

 

Animal Advocacy Blog Picture Janet Bovitz Sandefur just-do-something.org

There are do-gooders, and then, there are do-gooders. Whether you are the former, or the latter, the majority of people feel that if they do just one charitable thing during the Holiday season that maybe they normally don’t do at any other time of year, that their obligation is done for the year, until next year.

How sad for them. How sad for those living lives of misery the other 364 days a year.

Being kind, compassionate, giving, aware, responsible and conscientious, is a way of life.  Doing the right thing, EVERY time, is a choice. A conscious decision made with someone else’s very best interest at heart. And it doesn’t matter if that someone else is a four-legged, or two-legged, living being.

What matters is that, if the ONLY thing that motivates you to be charitable is the Holiday season,
then you should live as if every day is the Holiday season.

Giving of yourself, extending yourself is a gift; it’s a blessing – it’s a privilege. If you are able-bodied, you can give of yourself. And with that, the possibilities are endless. Endless.

If you think you are too tired, too busy, too broke, too depressed, too lazy – welcome to the world of being alive. We all feel “too something” at one time or another.  If you’re up to your eyeballs in “too something” be thankful that you are. It means you’re living. It means you have choices you can make. It means you can do something to change your part of the world. It means that you can do something to change the world for someone else.

So many animals have so little freedom. Their lives aren’t their own. Their choices, lives and destinies are decided for them, based on who owns them, who captures them, who abuses them, and who neglects them.

The Holiday season is no different for these animals, than any other miserable day.  And for many animals, the Holiday season is tragically even worse.

It’s a poor excuse for someone to think that the only time of year that they need help make a difference is during the Holiday season. There is something wrong with society if the push to increase charitable acts only comes at Christmas time and at the end of year.

We can ALL make a difference EVERY DAY, in some way.  And, we should. We are ALL obligated to make the world a better place for ALL living beings.

Does everyone feel and think this way? Nope. Should we? Yep.

Be a 365 do-gooder, and encourage others to do the same.

And if you cannot bring yourself to be 365, then start NOW, planning for the next Holiday season. Because Christmas is coming, again.

Happy Holidays,

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Don’t Be a BUT (from Janet)

just-do-something.org Janet Bovitz-Sandefur

  •  

It’s not just Animal Abuse that gets me angry.  It’s those that ‘talk the talk’ about helping to make a difference, and then, well, don’t.

Take this past week.  In just seven days, I have had three separate situations that have entailed people not making good decisions.

Situation I.  

A woman witnessed a moving vehicle tossing a live cat out the window. The cat hit the pavement, injured, and then ran off.  Of course this woman took to social media to rant about the driver, threatening to take action against the driver if she saw him again.  In that same post, she took the time to post the location and description of the vehicle. She stopped to see if she could grab the cat, and went back to that location one time later to see if the cat would show.  But – BUT – she didn’t report it.  And then, when others stepped up on that post to beg her to report it, to provide additional information, and to participate in making a plan to search and rescue that cat, she chose silence.  Someone else, from that Facebook post, reported it. And when authorities were finally able to connect with this woman, she suddenly lost her memory and said she could not remember the exact location or description of the truck.   I personally messaged her, asking her to drive with me up and down that street to spot the location, but – BUT – no reply.  Her final action was to delete the Facebook post, despite the fact that many people were still in varying degrees of working together to look for the cat.  Shameful.  

Situation II.

There are feral and stray cat colonies and families everywhere, my town is no exception.  I won’t get into all the ways that this can be prevented.  Instead, I want to talk about a small cat family in the next town over.  Hanging around a dumpster, next to a clump of brush, is a cat family.  Both adults and kittens.  Ferals? Maybe.  Strays? Definitely.  I’m proud to say that our community is really good about helping out these outside cats and kittens.  So, when I made it known that a local business that had a small family of cats that needed feeding, watering and shelter help, a woman who volunteers at one of our local shelters stepped up and offered to feed and water them.  We talked about what caring for these cats meant, and what the caretaking would entail. When it was time to build the winter cat shelters for this location, the day of building them came and she called in sick to cancel for that.  I didn’t think much of that – people get sick and plans change. I moved on, we built the shelters, set up the location, and this woman said she would go – every day. That was in the summer.  Fast forward to this weekend, and mind you, no-one has heard a peep from this woman since that time, so we assumed all was going as planned; everyone is under the impression she is feeding and watering these cats every day. But – BUT – she hasn’t been.  I find out by accident, when I stop by that location to retrieve my trail cam so we can use it to monitor another animal in need issue. I drive up to this location, cats are there, but no food and no water.  No recent prints in the snow to show that any human has been there in quite some time.  My heart breaks for these cats, who probably have been waiting a while to eat.  When I reach out to this woman, her response boils down to she’s busy and she goes “when she can”.  These cats are depending on her for their food and water.  But – BUT – no response.  NO response. Can I use the word Shameful again? Shameful.

Situation III ( a twofer one)

My husband and I are in our home, and there’s incessant barking going on outside at a nearby residence. Taking a walk outside, it’s a dog unknown to us in our neighborhood.  This dog is barking at a deer that is inside a fenced in yard. The dog is on the outside of the fence, a young German Shepherd who has a collar and a harnass.  No-one is around. Clearly a loose dog. A knock on that neighbor’s door and we are told that he sees this strange dog in the yard, but – BUT – he doesn’t want to get involved because he does not recognize the dog, so he does nothing.  We jump in our car and drive around the area, whereby we run into the dog owner in his car, looking for his dog.  He is super worried and very upset. But – BUT – why is he looking for his dog? Because he let the dog out at the gas station down the street without a leash so the dog could potty, and the dog took off.  We drive around a little more, eventually spot the dog, put him in my jeep, and return the dog to his owner.

What is the main theme of these situations? Well, actually, there are a few. But my focus is this: Don’t Be a BUT.

In a nutshell:

  • If you witness Animal Abuse in ANY form, REPORT IT. You have a moral, ethical and legal responsibility if you witness abuse, to report it. Reporting it does NOT mean YOU will get into trouble.  Yes, you will be part of the reporting process where they will take your contact information. But the bigger picture is that by reporting it, a formal witness allows law enforcement to investigate aspects of a situation that they otherwise cannot act on.  Witness statements also can help stop an abuser from abusing again just by providing information and details that maybe no-one else saw.  
  • If you commit to helping an animal in need, help at 100%.  If you take on a volunteer project that requires x, y and z.  Then, please to do ALL of x, y and z.  To simply pick and choose what you will do in piecemeal, when something more is required and you know it, is well, simply crappy of you.  Others (animals AND humans) are relying on you to do exactly what you promised, at 100%.  If you realize your volunteer project is not working out for you (for whatever reason), then don’t just stop. Make calls, ask for help, find a replacement, do whatever it takes to make sure the job is done at 100%, and then stop.
  • Get Involved. If you see something, or if you think you see something, JUST DO SOMETHING.  Lives (both animal and human) have been saved and spared because people, even doing the most minimal thing like a phone call, have done something.  If you see that strange dog in your yard, even a phone call may make the difference between that dog running off, getting hit by a car or becoming further lost/cold.  Don’t ignore something just because you can or it’s easier to take that route.
  • If you own a pet, think about your actions and non-actions. This includes the smallest effort of putting a leash on your dog before you take him/her out to potty in a strange place. Preventative actions has saved many lives, and the effort is sooo small.

Whether you work in Animal Welfare on any level, or you own a pet,  you simply can’t be a But.  And, being ‘but-less’ should be encouraged in others also.  If you see an opportunity to help someone else not be a BUT, then do it.   It really matters.

Animal Advocacy Founder signature Janet Bovitz Sandefur just-do-something.org

 

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De-Rut for Animals this Thanksgiving (From Janet)

nimal Advocacy Blog Picture Janet Bovitz Sandefur just-do-something.org

It’s sometimes easy to get into a rut. A rut where everything can feel the same, to the point where it’s easier to do nothing than to get up and get motivated to find something to do.

  • I’m bored
  • I’m too tired
  • It’s too late
  • It’s too early
  • I have no-one to do anything with
  • I’ll start tomorrow
  • I can’t think of anything to do
  • I don’t have the money
  • I don’t have the time

It’s unfortunate that so many people actually live their daily lives by the philosophy that they’re in a rut – but it’s not impossible to get out of one.

One of the best ways to de-rut?

  • Think about YOUR blessings
  • Be thankful for every one of them
  • Promise not to take advantage of them
  • Use your blessings to make a difference

What does that mean?

Okay, so you’re bored. But (BUT), you have the luxury of being able to get up, get out, get a drink or grab a bite to eat. If you’re cold, you can go in. If you’re hot, you can open a window. If you’re hurt, you can go to a doctor. If you’re tired, you can rest in comfort and in safety. If you’re anxious, you can go for a walk. If you’re itchy, you can use a back-scratcher.

You get where I’m going with this, right?

  • Most animals in need do not have even the most simple luxuries you might take for granted.

The point?

No matter what YOUR rut, YOU can do something to change it. It might not be the change you desire on every level, but you CAN do something to change it.

  • You can be thankful for what you have right now, and use those blessings to make a difference.

YOU are blessed. No matter what your situation is today, right now, you have the option to turn it around. And that’s a lot.

That’s more than most animals in need have, or hope to have.

If you can change the world for YOU, you can go one step farther, and change the world for an animal in need.

Today, and every day, take a moment to count YOUR blessings, and then use your blessings to make a difference for an animal in need who needs YOU to be their blessing.

Animal Advocacy Blog Picture Janet Bovitz Sandefur just-do-something.org

Be thankful, be grateful, be appreciative, and live. And then take THAT and make it MORE for an animal in need.  It matters.

Happy Thanksgiving.

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Happy Birthday to my Husband (from Janet)

Animal Advocacy Blog Picture Janet Bovitz Sandefur just-do-something.org

I am blessed in many ways. It’s the reason for my many blessings that I am able to advocate in all the ways I do to save and better the lives of animals in need.

Advocating is a difficult passion. It’s hard, exhausting, emotionally tiring, a time-stealer, and many times, the call to help is not on  your schedule.

Advocating is also one of the very bests part of me.

In my journey of advocating, I have spoken with people from all over the world who have similar ideals, goals, and passions. During more than one conversation (and I have had hundreds), the topic has come up of how advocating affects family life.  There are many passionate individuals just like me who told me that they have had to limit their time and efforts in Animal Welfare because it was negatively impacting their spouse or partner.

That just floored me.  

With so many roadblocks in advocating, it greatly saddened me to hear that many individuals were getting similar treatment on the home-front.   

In part, I get it. Advocating, and all the comes with that, takes TIME. Sometimes it takes more time than we have in a day, a week, a weekend. It can mean using spare time, or time from/after work, to finish those calls or e-mails, meet that person, or  – literally, go save a life.

I guess if your spouse or partner does not feel the same passion, or his/her views on animals is different, or they simply dislike having to share your time (jealously and feeling left out/ignored comes to mind) – then things on a personal level can become conflicted and even get nasty.  I have heard a few really awful stories.

However, if your partner does not feel the same passion – but understand yours, or his/her views on animals is different – but you’re helping to save and better lives and that’s recognized, or if they simply dislike having to share your time – but have hearts big enough to work around that; then your relationship, from an advocacy standpoint is pretty golden.

My relationship is pretty golden.  

And, when it comes to my endeavors:

Despite the nights and weekends when we are two ships passing in the night because of my endless running for animals, we are golden.

Despite the times he finds me crying at the computer because of the horrible things I read, see and share for animals in need, we are golden.

Despite the times I need to talk something out because I am upset, angry and frustrated over an abuse/neglect situation, we are golden.

Despite the hours I spend worrying over an animal that I cannot get to or trap, we are golden.

And, when he so adventurously offers and accompanies me when I go to the aid of an animal in need, we are golden.

I think loving someone, really loving them, means also being open and big hearted enough to be able to embrace your partners’ passions, goals and endeavors, even if they are something you don’t share or completely understand. You can still support and encourage – and yes, be there – for your partner, even if you need to keep some distance because you want or need to. Committing to someone also means you are willing to be a testament to your partner’s story and experiences, even if they are not in sync with yours.  

My husband really loves me. But he was a loving, big hearted, kind soul long before we met. I think his heart just grows bigger each year.

And I’m glad, so glad, his heart grows bigger for me every year.

James, I love you so. Thank you for every moment, every way you love me.

And thank you for supporting me with one of the very best parts of me – my advocating.  You don’t have to support me, which makes it all the more special.

So happy to be so golden with you.

Happy Birthday.  xo

Animal Advocacy Founder signature Janet Bovitz Sandefur just-do-something.org

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Safety Shouldn’t Be Scary for Halloween (From Janet)

Animal Advocacy Blog Picture Janet Bovitz Sandefur just-do-something.org

Many people don’t like Halloween, but for those who do, and celebrate it – let’s revisit some simple common sense tips to help ensure that animals are out of harm’s way.

  • There are nasty people every where. It’s unfortunate that we even feel the need to mention it. But just like predators who prey on children, there are those that prey on animals. Many predators don’t need a specific occasion to abuse an animal, but there are those that ramp up their nastiness on events just like Halloween, and the night before. Be wary of strangers, never leave your pet alone with someone you do not know or trust, and if something looks wrong, it probably is, so keep alert in the event that you can help ANY animal in trouble.
  • Do you keep your pet outside 24/7? First, tethering or confining an animal outdoors in the same place, every day is misery for the majority of animals, who are pack-oriented.  Re-think your motives for wanting to keep your family pet outside every day. With that said, always go the extra step for your outside pet during bad weather, and holiday events.
  • It’s 10 PM, do you know where your pet is? ID tags and a safe collar are always good practice, but even more so during times when your pet is apt to get spooked, shy, scared, anxious, upset and/or excited. And, Halloween is definitely a time when your pet can be more prone to getting spooked, shy, scared, anxious, upset and/or excited.
  • Hide the candy. Check for candy that may have been dropped while handing it out, or that trick-or-treaters may lose in  your yard. Did you knowChocolate in all forms – especially dark or baking chocolate – can be dangerous, even lethal for dogs. Symptoms of chocolate poisoning may include vomiting, diarrhea, rapid breathing, increased heart rate, and seizures. Candies containing the artificial sweetener xylitol can also be poisonous to dogs. Even small amounts of xylitol can cause a sudden drop in blood sugar and subsequent loss of coordination and seizures. Tin foil and cellophane wrappers are dangerous if ingested. If you do suspect your pet has ingested something toxic, please call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435. Candy is always better locked up where animals aren’t tempted and they can’t reach it.
  • Go easy on the pumpkins! Popular Halloween plants such as pumpkins and decorative corn are relatively nontoxic, but they can produce gastrointestinal upset or even intestinal blockage in pets who nibble on them.
  • Do you like to costume-up your pet for Halloween? If you are planning on dressing up your pet, don’t just show up on Halloween and drop your pet into his/her new garb.  Buy early, let your pet investigate it, and try it on a few times first. Costumes should be be restrictive or too warm. Some animals won’t potty if they are wearing something strange. Limit the amount of time your pet is in his/her costume, and make sure s/he can’t chew off any costume pieces. NEVER let your pet out of your sight if s/he is in a costume. And, certainly, if your pet definitely does not like the idea of wearing part or all of his/her costume, take it off! After all, pet costumes are for the HUMAN element of Halloween; no animal should be uncomfortable for ANY reason at the cost of entertaining a human.
  • What are YOU wearing? Make sure your pet knows who YOU are underneath all that glitter and make-up, and never tease ANY animal if you are wearing a costume. That’s just plain not nice. Speak up if you see someone scaring an animal in costume.
  • Are you taking your pet(s) to a Halloween event? Keep in mind how stressful that can be, even if s/he is with their owner. Although a lively event is fun for YOU, many times, especially times when others will be in costumes (and therefore not looking like a standard human being), these types of events can do a stressful and unpleasant number on your pet.
  • Are you having people over for a Halloween event, or is that doorbell going to ring all night? Better to keep your pet away from the in-house fun, and instead create a safe and quieter place where your pet hang (with access to water and toys of course) and that you can easily and routinely check up on him/her.
  • No candles or anything burning around your pet! End of story. Period. Just don’t.
  • Is your Halloween going to be glowing? Glow sticks are great to keep little ones in the light while trick-or-treating, but some are toxic. If you use them, lose them after Halloween is over, and keep them in a secure place.
  • How many Halloween lights do you need? Wires and cords from electric lights and other decorations should also be kept out of reach of your pets. If chewed, your dogs might suffer cuts or burns, or receive a possibly life-threatening electrical shock.
  • Don’t forget your smaller critters! Smaller pets should be given every consideration when necessary, so don’t forget them as you plan for holidays and special events.
  • Use Animal-Friendly Halloween Decorations! Think about the items you use inside and outside to decorate for the spooky season. Hanging strings, wires, small items that can be chewed and swallowed – NO animal (domestic or wild) is immune to being tangled, poked, or ingesting things can that harm and kill.  Safety first!

Anyone can get caught up in the excitement of a party, event, or holiday. No harm in that. But when YOUR enjoyment or overindulgence leads to stress, neglect, or harm of ANY animal, then it’s time to rethink your actions and plans. Ultimately, it is YOUR responsibility to, well, BE responsible for your own pet, and to keep your eyes open if you see something happening to another animal that needs attention.

Remember, YOU are their voice and their protector!

This Halloween, have FUN, be SAFE, make your choices and options RESPONSIBLE ones, and certainly, if you have any other tips to make this coming Halloween weekend a better one for animals, send it our way and we will share it.

Happy, Safe Halloween!

PS – Recycle your pumpkins for Wildlife!  Click here to see how!

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Can You See The Dog? (from Janet)

Animal Advocacy Blog Animal Welfare janet Bovitz sandeAnimal Advocacy Blog Animal Welfare janet Bovitz sandefur just-do-something.org Dog Tethering Chaining

Do you keep your eyes (and ears) open when you’re out and about?  

Can you see the dog in this picture?

Meet Bear.  Bear has been tied out side 24/7 since he was a baby.  His home is a volunteer-made insulated dog house, and he is forced to eat, sleep, crap and pace in one small area, by a chain no longer than the length of your body.  Bear’s owners have another dog, that is allowed to roam free (thanks to an electric collar), and is allowed inside on crappy days and even crappier nights.  Bear’s doghouse is so far from the house, that it makes it difficult to get to on snowy days, and slow to get to if Bear is in trouble.

How do I know about Bear?

This past weekend, my husband, James, and I volunteered for clean-up day with Gordy and Friends.   This group is a small, but powerful group out of the Fingerlakes, New York area whose main purpose is to provide food, water, shelter, toys, treats, socialization and a safe and hygienic pen area to outside dogs that are chained up 24/7.  In addition, owners are educated on, and shown by example, the wonderful, awesome ways to be a responsible and conscientious dog owner.  

The majority of dogs chained or tethered outside 24/7 do not receive ANY interaction. They are also not always given food and clean water on a daily basis, and as far as fleas, flies ticks, spiders and ants – if the owner isn’t providing food and clean water every day, do you think they are even thinking about protecting that dog from outside elements; whether it be environmental or insects? 

The majority of these dogs are forgotten.  They are isolated, un-exercised, not touched or played with, and go un-bathed. They are not checked regularly for illness or injury. Their nails are not clipped, they teeth are not cleaned, and their doghouses stay dirty and buggy.  They are left to linger their days in solitude, boredom and well, misery.

I heard about Gordy and Friends when I came across two dogs in a very poor outdoor 24/7 living situation in the next town over where I live.  Because these two dogs just squeaked past the guidelines in the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets Article 26, there was nothing much that could be done about how these lovely, neglected dogs were being treated, and not-treated.  The last time I went on the property to check on them, I was informed that my being there could be construed as trespassing and therefore breaking a law.  So, I had to find another way to check on these two dogs on a regular basis, and it was then I was put in touch with the founder of Gordy and Friends, who were all too happy to help them.

Our Saturday consisted of going to homes where known dogs were kept outside 24/7 in poor conditions to give them boredom alleviation in the form of treats, pets and walks, and to clean up their pen areas to they wouldn’t be walking around in their own filth.

The first home consisted of three dogs, (one of them injured and sick – that Gordy and Friends has been working on with the owners).  The dogs were very excited and happy to see us, and demonstrated that by jumping and barking.  I got my first taste of the owners when the window to the house opened, and she yelled out for the dogs to shut up. Window closed again.

And you wonder why I dislike people, in general, so much.

Once I got past my tears (there were A LOT that morning), I tried to look past my anger and disgust at the owners and the neglectful situations they put their dogs in, and instead, try to focus on what a wonderful thing we were doing to for these dogs who had come to recognize the Gordy and Friends’ Truck every week and were oh, so happy to see us.

Some of the dogs wanted walks so they could poop outside of their area and/or  run and stretch out on grass, others just wanted to sit and lean against you so they could be touched and petted and have soothing words whispered in their ears.

Animal Advocacy Blog Animal Welfare janet Bovitz sandeAnimal Advocacy Blog Animal Welfare janet Bovitz sandefur just-do-something.org Dog Tethering Chaining

Every dog we met (except for one a little too feisty for non-regular volunteers to care for) was kind, gentle and so happy to be getting some attention, treats and exercise.

I wanted to take them all home, and of course, put the owners in their places.

What do you need to be a volunteer for clean-up day with Gordy and Friends?

– Old boots

– Old clothes

– A pair of gloves

– The willingness to get a little dirty

– A bagged lunch and something to drink (we don’t stop, there are too many dogs to check on who are waiting)

– Compassion

– The ability to give hugs and pets, and hold back your tears and anger because at that moment, it’s all about the dogs

– Making time away from your day to help make a difference

Saturday was wonderful and terrible all at the same time.  The founder of Gordy and Friends, Kathy W.,  kept referring to these dogs as heroes. But truly, I think the real hero in all of this is Kathy. She saw a need, and her passion and drive to do the right thing for these animals turned into Gordy and Friends.  And just like that, dogs were being helped in so many great, giving ways.

All of the dogs that we visited on Saturday all fall within the “acceptable” guidelines for New York State.  That means,  no NYS authorities will take action to further help these dogs.  And THAT has to change.

There are many endeavors in the works within NYS right now to change some of the guidelines of Article 26.  If you want to find out how you can help in that endeavor, please reach out to us.

24/7 Outside Dogs are ALL OVER.  You can reach out to Gordy and Friends to ask about volunteering, or donating. Dogs receive 100% of every donation, and donations are always welcomed.

If YOU see or know of a 24/7 outside dog, please, make the effort to JUST DO SOMETHING to help make a difference.  If you’re not sure of how to help that dog, reach out to us.

James and I have already committed to going back to volunteer with Gordy and Friends soon.  In addition to clean-up days, they have specific agendas for some of the outside dogs to get them into better living situations, and they always welcome committed people who  simply want to help make a difference.

Did you find the dog yet?  If you were driving by too fast, you might never have seen Bear jumping up behind the red tractor, trying to get us to notice him as we pulled up. THAT is the life of an outside dog chained up 24/7.

Animal Advocacy Founder signature Janet Bovitz Sandefur just-do-something.org

 

 

 

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The Goose That Didn’t Need Rescuing (from Janet)

Animal Advocacy Blog Animal Welfare janet Bovitz sandeAnimal Advocacy Blog Animal Welfare janet Bovitz sandefur just-do-something.org

So, it’s the weekend, and in between gearing up for some sleety, icy weather, we are going to check on a lone Canadian Goose that has been hanging around a McDonald’s parking lot in the next town over.

The goose won’t fly, and he has been sleeping next to the parking lot black-top for a while now.  He gets so close that you can touch him if you want, but his impressie size and loud hissing tells us not to do that.

Is he ill?  Not sure, so we call a Wildlife Rehabilitator.  Can we get a picture of his poop?  Apparently, you can tell a lot about the health of a goose by his excrement.  The picture is inconclusive, but it’s a little darker than it should be which could mean lead poisoning but it could mean nothing at all.

Here is what we know: The poop is slightly off color.  The placement of the wings and shoulders are intact, meaning there is no structural reason why this goose cannot fly. He is eating the corn and lettuce we put out, so appetite is good.  Although he is hanging out in one spot, he’s up, walking and hissing if we get close enough, so he’s feisty. It’s troubling however, that the goose remains in one area and does not fly or walk far away even when approached.

So now the weather is changing to colder, and soon we will have sleety rain that is scheduled to ice over, prompting warnings of an ice storm. If the goose needs attention, we are told it’s best to capture him now to avoid him being in the harsher elements later.

911 and Animal  Control state that they will come, but they will kill the Goose instead of trying to help us rescue him.  What?!

And it’s cold and wet, and there are not many people out, and those that are do not want to help round up a Canada Goose (we asked a few).

So, the Wildlife Rehabilitor suggests that we try to throw a blanket over him and place him in a large box so we can bring him to a wildlife rehab facility over 30 minutes away.

All this, and we still need to get gas for our generator and finish shopping before the harsher weather hits.

For those that know me, you know I go to any lengths to rescue any animal in need. This Canada Goose situation is no different.

So, my husband and I are at McDonald’s, each of us on one side of this Goose, trying to get closer enough to a now-mad bird, to be able to grab him in a blanket. It would be hysterical if it wasn’t cold and wet, and if we were better dressed for catching a Goose in the elements, and if we weren’t tired from running alongside him for half an hour.

And then a guy comes over to find out why we are bothering a protected bird. I love him! We need more people to ask those concerned questions when they see someone doing something to an animal. We explain what we are trying to do. 

Then he says, “this goose is fine“.

Us: “How do you know?”

Him: “He’s got a female on a nest next to the building“.

Us: “Show us“.

And there it was. 

We call the Wildlife Rehabilitator back, and he laughs and laughs. He never thought to tell us to look for a nest site.

Hubby and I look at each other, and we laugh and laugh. It’s a relief that the goose is not ill, and now we can go finish our errands without worrying any more about this bird.

Lesson? Not every animal we see needs to be rescued. And with Spring now here, that is especially important to know because soon there will be babies.  Baby birds, baby deer, baby skunk, baby rabbits – well, lots of babies.  

It’s important that we all follow the “look but don’t touch” rule unless there is a true reason to do so.

Yes, there are times when it’s important to rescue right away, but there are other times when it’s good to observe first, and then make the decision to help.

We would have hated to think how it might have turned out if we had captured that goose, brought him to the wildlife rehabilitation center and left his mate unprotected.  

The BEST part of this story is that everything was FINE. 

And the goose that didn’t need rescuing – we left him right where he was first spotted. 

Animal Advocacy Founder signature Janet Bovitz Sandefur just-do-something.org

 

 

Animal Advocacy just-do-something.org logo Janet Bovitz Sandefur just-do-something.org

 

 

 

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