While pet owners can have the utmost dedication to their animals, some individuals may be doing more harm than good when it comes to pet care.
Carol Lynette Samuels, who was hit hard by the recession last year, was recently fined $9,000 for animal cruelty for living in her car with 11 Persian cats, one Himalayan cat, nine Pomeranians and two poodles, according to the Herald Sun.
Samuels was forced to move out of her $1.5 million mansion last year due to financial troubles, and said she could not bear to part with her animals as they were like her children.
"I’d lost an awful lot and didn’t want to lose my cats as well because they are the only family I’ve got," she told the news provider.
The animals were taken to the local veterinarian where a majority were found to be in poor pet health. A number of the cats were malnourished and had matted fur. While all of the animals were seized, one cat had to be put down.
According to News.com.au, Samuels was charged on nine counts of animal cruelty.
Some people may view feral cats as a nuisance, but others believe that they deserve compassion just like any other animal. Many Americans end up caring for stray cats on their own as they feel a sense of sympathy towards the homeless felines.
Portia de Rossi, who stars in the ABC Comedy Better Off Ted, recently teamed up with Alley Cat Allies to remind individuals to look after the well-being of feral cats, according to CatChannel.com.
"I’m very happy to be involved with Alley Cat Allies and their efforts to help stray and feral cats," de Rossi told the news provider. "The trap-neuter-return approach is the only way to help contain the populations and save their lives."
By getting the feral cat population under control, shelters may eventually become less crowded and more cats could be deemed adoptable. Feral cats are often not friendly animals and statistics show that they are usually the first animals killed in shelters because it is believed that no one would adopt them otherwise.
According to the American Humane Society, 71 percent of all cats that enter shelters are euthanized.
While animal owners know that it’s their duty to provide pet care to ensure their furry friend is happy, some may not realize that animals can return the favor. When Liz Maxted-Bluck was taking her 2-year-old Rottweiler, Jake, out for a walk, she had no idea that her beloved canine would be proclaimed a hero.
The pair were walking in a park in West Midlands, UK, last July when they heard a woman screaming, according to the Daily Mail. While Maxted-Bluck thought it was just children playing, Jake, a former rescue dog, ran into the woods to find an illegal immigrant attempting to rape a woman.
Jake chased the attacker away and circled both the girl and Maxted-Bluck to protect them. The attacker is currently on trial, where the judge was able to hear about Jake’s heroic efforts.
"He has always hated conflict so when he heard her screaming he must have known someone was in trouble," Maxted-Bluck told the court. "After he ran back to the woman, I rang the police and he circled us like he was guarding us. The woman was very grateful."
Although some individuals may take prescription drugs to help them in their daily lives, pet owners should keep their medications away from their animals, as some pills can be extremely dangerous.
Cats have a tendency to be attracted to Adderall, which is a common drug that is used to treat ADHD, according to Science News. This attraction can be fatal to cats, and it is recommended that animal owners keep the drug from their felines’ reach.
Additionally, dogs who consume Ibuprofen have a chance of fatality as the human drugs could lead to kidney failures or ulcers. Some scientists claim that by the time the side effects occur, the canine may already be in poor dog health.
"Unlike Adderall, where cats will develop symptoms within hours, ibuprofen’s damage can take two to three days before it becomes clinically apparent," Sharon Gwaltney-Brant, a board certified veterinary toxicologist, told the news provider. "So if we wait for symptoms, some pretty bad stuff may already have occurred."
According to PetPlace.com, pet owners who see their animals ingesting human medication should attempt to induce vomiting.
One of the world’s most renowned dogsled races, the Iditarod, has been underway since March 6 in Alaska, as sledding teams travel more than 1,150 miles in 10 to 17 days.
One sled team lost a member when 3-year-old Whitey-Lance got loose from his harness and was nowhere in sight, according to the Boston Herald. Musher Justin Savidis was eager to find the canine, worried about the dog’s health in the subzero weather.
Whitey-Lance was missing for four days until residents of McGrath, Alaska, tracked him down by luring him with a salmon carcass. Although the pup was confused by his surroundings at first, he eventually recognized his owner.
"He was a little startled by my goggles," Savidis told the news provider. "I said, ‘Hey, Whitey’ and he was like, ‘Ah, I remember you.’"
Although the pup suffered from minor injuries and was noticeably thinner, local veterinarians deemed him in overall good dog health. Savidis told the news provider that he was happy that his dog was found safe and that they plan on racing again next year.