Archive for May, 2017

Can You Break a Window to Save a Dog in a Hot Car?

Sunday, May 28th, 2017

Laws Vary by State

(COTATI, CA)–As summer approaches and temperatures rise, the danger of dogs dying because negligent owners left them in a hot car grows as well.

Even on a day when it’s 70 degrees outside, the temperature inside a car can hit 90 degrees in just 10 minutes. On a hot day, the temperature inside a closed car can shoot as high as 116 degrees in the same amount of time.

What can you do, within your legal rights, if you see an animal in distress in a locked car? The Animal Legal Defense Fund, the nation’s preeminent legal advocacy organization for animals, has some tips.

1) If you see an animal in distress, call 911.

Calling 911 is the first step to saving that animal’s life. Most states allow a public safety officer to break into the car and rescue an animal if its life is threatened.

2) Know your state laws.

Although 29 states have some form of “hot car” law that prohibits leaving a companion animal unattended in a parked vehicle, the laws differ drastically from place to place:

· Only eight states — California, Colorado, Indiana, Massachusetts, Wisconsin, Florida, Ohio and Tennessee — have “Good Samaritan” laws that allow any person to break a car window to save a pet. Alabama and Arizona have bills pending.

· In six of those states — California, Florida, Massachusetts, Ohio, Tennessee and Wisconsin — “Good Samaritans” must first contact law enforcement before breaking into the car in order for their actions to be considered legal.

· In 19 states, only public officials such as law enforcement and humane officers can legally break into a car to rescue an animal (Arizona, California, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, Virginia and Washington).

· In New Jersey and West Virginia, although it is illegal to confine an animal in a hot car, no one has the authority to break into a vehicle to save the animal, not even law enforcement.

3) Let people know it’s not okay to leave their pet unattended in a car.

When an animal dies in a hot car, most of their humans say they left them “just for a minute.” If you see someone leave their animal in a parked car, tell them that even if it’s a pleasant day outside, the temperature inside the car can skyrocket fast. Cracking a window doesn’t eliminate the risk of heatstroke or death.

4) Get the message out with the Animal Legal Defense Fund sunshade

The Animal Legal Defense Fund has created sunshades that remind pet owners of the risks of leaving animals unattended in a car. The sunshades feature the message, “Warning: Don’t leave dogs in hot cars,” in lettering large enough to be readable from across a parking lot. It also urges people to call 911 if they find animals locked in a car and in distress. The sunshades are available at and all proceeds benefit the Animal Legal Defense Fund.

For more information on keeping dogs safe this summer visit

Stay and Canoe in Mendocino

Sunday, May 28th, 2017

canoeWhen your dog is smiling in his sleep, he’s dreaming of canoeing on Mendocino County’s Big River, the wind streaming in his ears, seals and otters playing alongside.
The Little River Inn on the Northern California Coast is about to make your dog’s dreams come true. From June through Halloween, lucky pups and their parents can take advantage of the River Dog Package — two nights at the ocean-view Victorian inn, a trip on the river in a purpose-built super stable craft that accommodates the whole family (Fido included), delicious dining, complementary dog treats, and more.

The package includes:

· Two nights in an Ocean-view Fireplace room with the pet fee waived

· 3-hours of fun on the Big River in a boat that has been specially engineered for dog-friendly voyages

· $100 voucher toward dinner – dogs are welcome in the inn’s elegant parlor or to indulge in cozy in-room dining and belly rubs by the fire.

· The inn’s famous doggie welcome kit, including treats, a towel, and a guide to how to best enjoy Mendocino with your pet

The 3 Top Mistakes to Avoid With Your Newly Adopted Dog

Sunday, May 28th, 2017

Travis Brorsen

According to statistics recently released by the ASPCA, pet adoptions are up by a remarkable 18.5%. Nationally, an estimated 3.2 million shelter animals are adopted each year (1.6 million dogs and 1.6 million cats), up from 2.7 million adoptions in 2011. The Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals also states the shelter intake and euthanasia are down and the number of animals being placed in forever homes in the New York City is up dramatically. This is thanks to not only the hard work of shelters and rescue organizations but also the general public’s dedication to rescuing homeless animals.

While this is fantastic news, it can also mean that many people may find they have adopted a wonderful dog who is no longer a puppy, but is still in need of some may find that they themselves need some training to avoid the all too common mistakes that new adoptive pet parents can make. And these mistakes can lead to a less than happy experience once the dog finds their new home.

I have found over the past several years the biggest mistakes new owners of adopted dogs make are:

Feeling guilty about their dog’s past
Not setting or reinforcing rules or boundaries to earn trust and respect
Not getting them on a schedule from day one

Feeling guilty about your dog’s past

Dogs live in the moment. This doesn’t mean they don’t have associations with past experiences i.e.: being hit with a stick or abused by a large man etc. But they do not live in the past. They live in the present.

Unfortunately, if you spend the first few weeks or even months coddling your new dog, protecting them from the world, you are more than likely forming bad habits and encouraging unwanted behaviors. For instance, if your dog learns that if they bark you come running to their rescue, pet them when they are scared, allow them on the couch of their own free will, then you are simply empowering them as an equal and creating bad had habits. Equals might love you, but rarely will they see you as the one in charge and respect you as the giver of all good things!

Not setting or reinforcing rules or boundaries to earn trust and respect

Rules and boundaries are the building blocks to a strong foundation when creating a bond a relationship with your new dog. Simple rules like, only one toy out at a time. This teaches your dog they need you to get them, it adds values to the toys because they don’t have full access and it adds value to you as their owner. Another rule might be that they aren’t allowed on the couch without permission. Dogs that jump all over the furniture and invite themselves into your personal space are showing no respect for you or your space. Make sure you follow through when establishing boundaries. If you give them an inch, they will take a mile!

Schedule and routine

It takes a dog one to two weeks to come out of their shell and become comfortable after moving into a new home. You might think the dog is tired all the time, won’t eat or even that they don’t like their new home. The majority of the time they are just going through a little phase I call “new home acclimation.” Dogs are creatures of habit, so if you get them on a schedule right away, you are setting them up for success. Schedules help them understand what is expected of them and when. Without a routine dog tends to get into trouble and create bad habits. Make sure exercise is a large part of their new routine. FYI, lack of exercise is the number one problem when it comes to behavioral issues.