Archives for category: animals

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Last October, Michael Vick, the football player convicted of dog torture and dog killing, announced that he was, once again, a dog owner. When Vick was released from prison and placed on parole, the court did not place any restrictions on dog ownership. Now, Vick has released photos of him with his new dog.

A convicted child molester would never be allowed to live near an elementary school or be allowed to work with children. So why is Vick allowed to have a dog given his shameful past?

Last October, Michael Vick, the football player convicted of dog torture and dog killing, announced that he was, once again, a dog owner. When Vick was released from prison and placed on parole, the court did not place any restrictions on dog ownership. Now, Vick has released photos of him with his new dog.

A convicted child molester would never be allowed to live near an elementary school or be allowed to work with children. So why is Vick allowed to have a dog given his shameful past?

Amazing what you will find in Ft. Lauderdale. Here are two Desert Tortoises that I came across. The female Tortoise will lay eggs after being impregnated, but the humid Florida climate will prevent the eggs from hatching. Florida is home to many non-indigenous species, which have arrived by human activity, either deliberately or accidentally. Some introduced species are damaging the ecosystem such as the Boa Constrictor and Python, others have no negative effect such as these Tortoises. 

Dogs in shelters seldom have a happy end. The shelter is usually the last stop in a dog’s life. However, some stories do have happy endings! Angels do walk the earth.

With temperatures plunging below zero in the Portland area, I’ve been bundling up in layers of clothes. Unfortunately, our animal companions that live outside cannot. Cats have fur, which gets thicker during the winter months to keep them warm, but during these frigid days their fur is often not enough. Cold weather forces cats to seek refuge in many places, including under the car hood. However, finding warmth under the car hood places cats in a very dangerous position. If you start your engine while the cat is present, he or she could be at serious risk of injury or even death.

There is a simple way to prevent this from happening: bang on the car hood or honk the horn before starting the engine. This gives the cat time to escape. I recently read of an incident in Portland where a homeless cat was killed by the fan belt as it sought refuge under the hood. Also, check the top of every wheel before starting your car. Outdoor cats may have tucked themselves away in the wheel well as they seek protection from the snow, wind, and subzero temperatures. Following these simple steps may save a cat’s life.

With temperatures plunging below zero in the Portland area, I’ve been bundling up in layers of clothes. Unfortunately, our animal companions that live outside cannot. Cats have fur, which gets thicker during the winter months to keep them warm, but during these frigid days their fur is often not enough. Cold weather forces cats to seek refuge in many places, including under the car hood. However, finding warmth under the car hood places cats in a very dangerous position. If you start your engine while the cat is present, he or she could be at serious risk of injury or even death.

There is a simple way to prevent this from happening: bang on the car hood or honk the horn before starting the engine. This gives the cat time to escape. I recently read of an incident in Portland where a homeless cat was killed by the fan belt as it sought refuge under the hood. Also, check the top of every wheel before starting your car. Outdoor cats may have tucked themselves away in the wheel well as they seek protection from the snow, wind, and subzero temperatures. Following these simple steps may save a cat’s life.

These two Schwäbisch Hällischen piglets are
Berlin’s Lucky Pigs for 2013

Each year, Berlin’s Animal Park (Tierpark Berlin) selects Berlin’s lucky pigs for the coming year. (Does that mean they will be spared from the dinner plate?) Traditionally, pigs were viewed as good luck, especially at the New Year.

Pig charms are very popular in Germany and Austria, including gold and silver bracelets, Christmas ornaments, candies, toys, and post-cards. This notion of the lucky pig arose from the realities of the 18th century: pigs were a source of food and income. A farming family that kept pigs would never go hungry. There’s something perverse in this logic since the pig was not lucky and would eventually be consumed. 

New Year’s Postcard
from the Early 20th Century


These two Schwäbisch Hällischen piglets are
Berlin’s Lucky Pigs for 2013

Each year, Berlin’s Animal Park (Tierpark Berlin) selects Berlin’s lucky pigs for the coming year. (Does that mean they will be spared from the dinner plate?) Traditionally, pigs were viewed as good luck, especially at the New Year.

Pig charms are very popular in Germany and Austria, including gold and silver bracelets, Christmas ornaments, candies, toys, and post-cards. This notion of the lucky pig arose from the realities of the 18th century: pigs were a source of food and income. A farming family that kept pigs would never go hungry. There’s something perverse in this logic since the pig was not lucky and would eventually be consumed. 

New Year’s Postcard
from the Early 20th Century


One can only guess how this pony got on Berlin’s S-Bahn (subway) last Thursday. Most passengers are unimpressed by the unusual traveler, but the situation is bizarre enough for a few people to whip out their cell phones and take pictures. The pony appears to be well-behaved; nevertheless, large animals are prohibited on Berlin’s transit system. Transit authorities issued the pony’s companion a warning but no fine. It’s unclear whether the pony had a valid transit ticket.