Free Pet wellness clinic at STARelief

With 4th of July less than a month away, many pets and their owners tend to get hassled. The inevitable fireworks leave most pets scared and their owners stressed! Many Veterinarians say that the 3rd of July is amongst the busiest days at their clinics with many families coming in to collect medication and complete checkups before the holiday. More pets are lost on Independence day than any other day of the year!  This July 4th be better prepared to face (or shy away from) the fireworks.

STARelief has partnered with VCA Davis Animal Hospital to provide a FREE Pet wellness clinic! On the 22nd of June, bring your pet for a free Rabies Vaccine and Microchip between 12 pm and 3 pm to the VCA Davis Animal Hospital in Stamford. Do bring your pet and help spread the word.

2014 Pet Wellness Clinic Creative

 

 

 

Keep watching this space for some more tips on how to keep your pets safe and comfortable during this holiday!

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Article by Madhumita Ganapathy

Madhu, having grown up in a household that always had pets, fell in love with animals at a very young age. She firmly believes that until one has loved, nurtured and cared for a pet, one’s life remains incomplete. She loves writing, travelling, and meeting new people. Madhu lives in Stamford and joined STARelief as Social Media Director to lend her marketing expertise in spreading the word and creating awareness. Connect with her on Twitter @MadhuG86

Are we over-protective of our pets?

I know of a friend who is a great animal lover. She often rescues abandoned pets and tries to provide loving homes for them. So great is her love for the critters that she views her own dog as a ‘child’ (at this point there are many of us who are probably silently nodding in approval- for after all we are all guilty of this to some extent!). Yet, when she hands over the rescued animal, she hands over a list of do’s and dont’s, constantly calls the to-be-owners with instructions and borders on intrusive behavior, successfully scaring away many a prospective loving owners! So here comes the all important question- Do we allow our love for animals to blur our reality?

Image courtesy: www.nydailynews.com

As one who works with rescuing abandoned animals, it becomes natural to view the world with cynicism. Yet, doesn’t it also become one’s responsibility to recognize good intentions and trust our fellow human beings? 

Have you had similar experiences with an over-protective owner or rescue worker? What are your views? Let us know in the comments section!

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Article by Madhumita Ganapathy

Madhu, having grown up in a household that always had pets, fell in love with animals at a very young age. She firmly believes that until one has loved, nurtured and cared for a pet, one’s life remains incomplete. She loves writing, travelling, and meeting new people. Madhu lives in Stamford and joined STARelief as Social Media Director to lend her marketing expertise in spreading the word and creating awareness. Connect with her on Twitter @MadhuG86

Puppies from the pet store? No Thanks!

How often have you gone to the pet store and stood staring at the beautiful little puppies and kittens on display? Sometimes you can pet them, hold them and cuddle. And boy do they love the attention. Ever wondered what that little puppy has undergone before it landed up at your local pet store?

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Here is the harsh reality. Almost all pet store puppies come from puppy mills. These puppies and their parents are subjected to extremely harsh and filthy living environments. A puppy mill is a for-profit organization which seeks to minimize overhead costs and focuses on generating revenue. This means that a puppy mill will focus on breeding dogs and selling them as quickly as possible, and until that sale is made, the dogs are made to live in appalling conditions.

Since the focus is on minimizing costs, very often 3 – 4 small dogs are stuffed into a single cage with hardly any room to move around. They are fed poorly and often develop diseases due to poor hygiene. Many a time, these dogs develop behavioral problems due to the extreme conditions they are raised in. Most puppy mills have poor lighting, ventilation and sanitation. Very often these animals even lack access to veterinary care. To say that these puppy mills are cruel, would be putting it mildly. Here is a video by the Humane Society of the United States which throws some light on the pathetic conditions of these poor animals.

Volunteers helping

Every year, retail pet stores sell more than 500,000 dogs, while 5 to 7 million dogs enter shelters. In many states, puppy mills are legal. Only 26 states in the U.S have laws to regulate commercial kennels to prevent cruelty to animals. It is hence our responsibility to look out for our canine friends. When you are looking for a pet, make a conscious choice. Check in your local shelter to see if you can find a pet suitable to your needs. If you choose to go to a breeder, ensure that the breeder has a good reputation. Do your research. A good breeder will ensure that the animal has been treated well and is healthy and happy. The need for a good home for the pet ranks higher than profit for a breeder of repute. Avoid purchasing your pet at pet stores or online. Most pet stores deny sourcing their puppies from puppy mills and do not disclose the true history of the animal. Before making a decision to buy from a pet store, explore other reliable sources.

Pets bring great joy into our world. It is our responsibility to ensure that cruelty towards these wonderful creatures is stopped.

 

Resources:

http://savepuppymilldogs.com/

http://nopetstorepuppies.com/puppy-mills-are-cruel

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Article by Madhumita Ganapathy

Madhu, having grown up in a household that always had pets, fell in love with animals at a very young age. She firmly believes that until one has loved, nurtured and cared for a pet, one’s life remains incomplete. She loves writing, travelling, and meeting new people. Madhu lives in Stamford and joined STARelief as Social Media Director to lend her marketing expertise in spreading the word and creating awareness. Connect with her on Twitter @MadhuG86

Gifting pets

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It’s that time of the year again! We get together and spread the Christmas cheer, with sparkling lights and lovely gifts for near and dear ones. Behind every gift, there is a thought- will the recipient like it? Can they use it? Is it something that they want desperately? If the perfect gift is a pet this Christmas, halt! And think! Before you rush to grant your loved one the pet they have always dreamt about answer a few simple questions.

  1. Is the future owner of this lovely animal ready to make a commitment spanning years? The average life span of a dog is 11 years and that of a cat is about 13 years! So before you rush into gifting a pet, pause and evaluate if your loved one is willing and capable of making a commitment running into years!
  2. Having a pet can be expensive. So before gifting a pet, do evaluate if the future owner will be able to afford caring for the animal. Right from pet food to veterinary care, having a pet can mean a significant monetary investment!
  3. Loving animals does not automatically mean that one is willing or capable of caring for a pet! So if the idea of gifting a pet stems from someone loving animals, it may not be ideal to gift them a pet!

While pets make lovely surprises, do remember that gifting pets impulsively might result in a lot of unnecessary hassles for both the owner and the animal alike! Having said that, there is no denying that a pet can bring great joy to the family. So if you are planning on gifting a loved one a pet, do your research ahead of time!

Here are some other useful articles you can read before making your decision:

http://www.timesfreepress.com/news/2013/dec/17/giving-pet-present-not-good-idea-experts-say-if-yo/

http://www.petrescue.com/petlibrary/pet-rescue/no-christmas-puppies-please/

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Article by Madhumita Ganapathy

Madhu, having grown up in a household that always had pets, fell in love with animals at a very young age. She firmly believes that until one has loved, nurtured and cared for a pet, one’s life remains incomplete. She loves writing, travelling, and meeting new people. Madhu lives in Stamford and joined STARelief as Social Media Director to lend her marketing expertise in spreading the word and creating awareness. Connect with her on Twitter @MadhuG86

Growing up with pets

A lot is being said today about the benefits of growing up with pets in the house. The benefits that people list range from young children developing better resistance to allergies to better behavior training. Yet, when I look back at my growing up years, I remember the two dogs (one succeeding the other) that tottered behind me and unknowingly taught me a whole lot of things that would later change the way I look at our world.

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The first dog we had at home was a golden Labrador. She was the most beautiful dog I have ever seen. She stood tall and slender, her eyes betraying the softness of her heart. She was brought home when I still very young, so her size alarmed me and my friends. When I overcame my initial fright I learnt that Ruby (which is what we named her) had many lessons to teach us.

Patience:

When I look back now, I am appalled at how we played with Ruby. We tugged at her tail, climbed over her like a horse, hugged her tight and pretended she was our dog detective on mysterious journeys into different lands and what not! Yet, through all those years Ruby never once so much as scratched any of us. She never barked in protest and always followed us into every nook and cranny! One of the greatest lessons I learnt from my beloved dog was the virtue of patience. She somehow understood that we were children and was always patient with us, through whatever we did.

True love and faithfulness:

When Ruby was a grand old lady, her master (my grandfather) passed away. For 3 days she refused to eat a single meal. We coaxed her, brought her favorite foods, tried to feed her by hand and tried every other trick in the book. But Ruby never touched a morsel, she mourned for her beloved master, for it was he who used to feed her every day. Soon afterwards, she lost the will to live. She fought terrible disease and finally passed on to join her master. There is no love in the world that is purer than the love and faithfulness of an animal to her master.

Feeling pure joy:

After Ruby, we brought home another Labrador – a chocolate colored fellow, whom we named Brandy. When Brandy came home he was forty days old. He had blue eyes and fit into my palm. It was love at first sight. Brandy missed his mom terribly and would choose to cuddle up to me or my mother as he slept (he conveniently ignored the men of the house!). As he grew up, we taught him to climb stairs, sit, roll, play, all like he was a human baby. The hours of joy that Brandy brought the household as he grew up remain unaccounted, but the memories of our little boy can never be erased. He is now an old man, but still behaves like a child when he sees us! And the way he looks at me when I walk in through the door, still fills my heart with immeasurable joy that only he can bring!

There may be a hundred researches that suggest the medical benefits of children growing up with pets. I have just a few, but these to me are the most valuable! Do you have incidents from your childhood or those of your children’s that you would like to share? Share them with us in the comments section!

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Article by Madhumita Ganapathy

Madhu, having grown up in a household that always had pets, fell in love with animals at a very young age. She firmly believes that until one has loved, nurtured and cared for a pet, one’s life remains incomplete. She loves writing, travelling, and meeting new people. Madhu lives in Stamford and joined STARelief as Social Media Director to lend her marketing expertise in spreading the word and creating awareness. Connect with her on Twitter @MadhuG86

The start!

Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible. -Saint Francis of Assisi

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This is exactly how STARelief began, almost two years ago! We were a group of volunteers who had worked with various Animal Rescue centers and saw animals brought to the shelters because their families could no longer afford to care for them. It was this painful separation of pets from their families that lead a group of us to join hands and build STAReleif and Pet Assistance.

We began in a very small way with a handful of volunteers and patrons, and have today assisted over 300 pets stay Happy, Healthy and Home. Now more than ever we are committed to fulfilling our vision- to ensure that no pet guardian will have to give up their pet due to financial hardships.

Today, two years down the line, we have a lot to be thankful for and are proud to launch our new website! We promise to strive towards making our vision a reality and also hope to take you along on this exciting journey! So watch this space for updates, information, opinions and for lots more!

Here’s wishing you all a very Happy Thanksgiving! And a special thank you to all those who have helped STARelief go from strength to strength!

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Article by Madhumita Ganapathy

Madhu, having grown up in a household that always had pets, fell in love with animals at a very young age. She firmly believes that until one has loved, nurtured and cared for a pet, one’s life remains incomplete. She loves writing, travelling, and meeting new people. Madhu lives in Stamford and joined STARelief as Social Media Director to lend her marketing expertise in spreading the word and creating awareness. Connect with her on Twitter @MadhuG86

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STARelief and Pet Assistance
P.O. Box 3035
Stamford, CT 06905
Phone: 203-636-0971
Fax: 203-883-0325
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