New Jersey community rescues dozens of cats from shelter

Activists and community members are trying to give homes to straysAnimal activists and common homeowners saved 27 cats from euthanasia this week at the Ewing Animal Shelter in New Jersey.

Pet care and rescue advocate Mark Philips arranged for 11 cats to be sent to a farm in Hunterdon County, rather than be put to death, the Trentonian reports. The felines had been scheduled to be euthanized at the animal shelter because they were considered feral, and not adoptable.

New Jersey state law allows for animals to be put down after seven days in an animal shelter, if it is not adopted or claimed.

In addition to Philips’ contribution, community members adopted at least 14 cats from the Ewing shelter on Community Fest Day 2009 at the College of New Jersey. Two other cats are being placed in foster care and may be adopted later.

Ewing’s mayor, Jack Ball has been working with pet rescue groups to improve conditions at crowded animal shelters, without resorting to euthanasia. Animal control officers tallied 69 cats at the shelter this weekend – significantly more than the limit of 25.

"No cats will die this week," Ball told reporters.
The U.S. Humane Society, an organization that helps to prevent animal cruelty, encourages responsible pet owners to consider adopting a homeless animal from their local shelters.
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How to include dogs in Halloween photo shoot

Doggie costumes need to be documented with a photo shootAfter spending hours in costume stores and internet search engines finding a clever and comfortable Halloween outfit for dogs, pet owners may wish to snap a few photos before the costume they so fastidiously selected is shaken off or chewed up. Those wishing to memorialize the delights of their "devil dog" in full Halloween regalia may need a few tips to snap quality pictures, while ensuring acceptable pet care.

Professional animal photographer and recreational dog owner, Sam Allen, gave PEOPLEPets.com reporters several tips for taking great photos of costumed pets. Allen’s main piece of advice was to be patient. She explained, "It takes time to get the photo just how you want it."

Allen instructs pet owners to consider their dog’s feelings as they approach the photo shoot, suggesting a puppy may not be as excited to wear strange garb as the owner may be to see them in it. Allowing the dog to sniff the costume and become comfortable with one article of clothing at a time, Allen says, increases the chances of the dog’s approval. Food, toys and treats can also act as motivators.

The photographer further instructs that natural light, an uncluttered background, and camera angles at the dog’s eye level will ensure memorable pictures to keep on the refrigerator.

Some Halloween costume retailers sell dog costumes which range from Zorro to Elvis.
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Halloween turns dogs into pumpkins

Pumpkins will be the most popular costumes for dogs this HalloweenDevil dogs, frog princes and French maid poodles are typically content from a child’s imagination or a Walt Disney fairytale; the arrival of Halloween, however, means that pet owners will be scouring costume-shop shelves to find a clever and comfortable costume for their animals.

This week, Yahoo! Reported the occurrence of the search term "Pet Halloween costumes" increased by 3,725 percent from one week ago. As owners prepare for the holiday, local events around the country plan to decide upon the year’s best pet costume.

Recalling an iguana cheerleader that entered a competition last year at a Guardians for Animals event in New Jersey, Guardians spokesperson, Alex Whitney, told the Observer & Eccentric Hometown, "We voted her first place. We couldn’t not do it, when she stood up and waved those pom poms."

The event, which will be held again this year, benefits Guardians, a nonprofit organization aims at rescuing animals from dying in shelters and promoting pet care.

In other regions, pet photo and costume contests are sending proceeds to local animal shelters and the U.S. Humane Society.

An ABC News affiliate reports that the most popular costumes for dogs this year will be pumpkins and devils.
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Veterinarian: Clean teeth in pets add years to life

Dental care for pets can lengthen life spansIn recognition of National Pet Wellness Month, pet health specialists are reminding dog and cat owners of the symptoms of common pet diseases which can easily be overlooked.

Specifically, veterinary officials in Florida and the Greenies Company have pointed out that regular checkups and dental exams are essential in maintaining a dog or cat’s health. Dr Jan Bellows a veterinary and pet dental specialist in Weston, Florida, notes that periodontal disease is the most common health problem for pets with almost 75 percent of dogs and cats experiencing the infection by age 3.

Periodontal disease develops when plaque on the pet’s gum line introduces bacteria into the bloodstream, which can cause organ damage in advanced states.

"Cleaning your pet’s teeth can actually prolong its life," said Bellows. "Daily care is not optional if you want your pet to live a long, healthy life."

In additional to daily brushing, veterinarians suggest tooth wipes, dental treats and foods that clean teeth for dogs and cats.

Doctors Foster & Smith says dog owners should watch for bad breath, red or swollen gums, discolored teeth, or strange bumps as indications to visit a veterinarian.
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Dog daycare ideal for busy pet owners, anxious pets

Day care for dogs promotes pet care for busy ownersA dog day care center begun by an entrepreneurial pet owner in 2001 has sprung into a nationwide franchise that gives busy dog lovers a respite from kennels and the guilt of leaving a pet alone during the day.

Recognizing a need for convenient pet care in her area, Amy Nichols quit her job and opened Happy Tails Dog Spa, a personal care facility, in an industrial park in Tyson’s Corner, Virginia, just outside of Washington, D.C, USA Today reports.

Nichols indicated to reporters that convenient pet care was the main goal of her project and the main element of her success. "I knew 50,000 people come to Tyson’s Corner every day. I didn’t want to be where the homes were. I wanted to be where the jobs were."

A departure from typical kennel care, Dogtopia features four playrooms, a dog lounge and webcams to allow owners to watch their pets on the company’s website. Customers pay up to $35 a day or more if the dog gets a bath or stays overnight.

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals recommends personal care facilities for dogs that experience separation anxiety.
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