Volunteer at ARNO
Mr. Raymond Kane
North Middlesex Regional High School
I know we were just one of many projects that North Middlesex/NOLA helped, but I wanted to express my thanks and my comments about your students and North Middlesex coming back to Animal Rescue New Orleans every year since Katrina.
I realize we (ARNO) are not the most important part of NOLA's work in New Orleans. Obviously rebuilding houses and helping revitalize a dying house in a part of the city that needs it so badly is probably paramount in the order of things. Not only are you helping give a liveable home to someone, but you are helping to revitalize a neighborhood so more people will want to be there again. Then there is helping at the food bank where so many of our citizens depend on help with food and daily items just to keep alive with the barest of sustenance. And yes, there are the many homeless here, down and out and dependent upon the missions in the city to help them stave off what winter we do have with a warm place to lie their head and worn body.
I have read your blog and the students' comments about their work in New Orleans. We were not mentioned in any of the published comments, but I know those who did come to our shelter worked with more than 100% of their bodies, minds and spirits, not to mention their incredible enthusiasm for what we were doing at our little no-kill shelter born of Katrina's tragedies to both two-legged and four-legged alike.
My message to you is how important to our well-being, both mentally and physically, your students are to us. They are the breath of fresh air we long for in our day-to-day striving to make this world a better place for homeless animals and for the people who can no longer afford to keep their beloved pet, sometimes their only 'family' since Katrina. Our work is quiet and silent, as we work with and for the voiceless. Our compensation is the camaraderie that we as a family of volunteers create after working month after month, year after year, with each other, and the joy we feel when we find the perfect home for that pet who wants no more than to have a permanent home filled with love and care. Certainly what we experience is not unlike the ten months of planning that your NOLA group does before they get on that plane headed to New Orleans each year and the joy they feel after helping where they are so badly needed.
I want to make sure you know how much we appreciate your assistance and allowing us to be a destination point in North Middlesex' NOLA program. We also understand the underlying 'missing New Orleans' they all expressed when they got home. We are a city of people who really care, our culture is as diverse as it is colorful. We are voyeurs of life, never meeting a stranger as we treat all as if they are a long lost friend or relative. In Katrina we experienced a tragedy that will take at least a generation to correct, though we will never regain the lives we lost, both human and animal. But like your students, we have memories that remain a part of our heart and soul and will allow us to make this city, and this world, a better place for all.
Thank you again, for the animals,
Charlotte Bass Lilly
Animal Rescue New Orleans
From North Middlesex to New Orleans: Students give back3/05/2014 By Chelsea Feinstein, reprinted with permission
Just a few of the volunteers who came to ARNO from North Middlesex Regional High in Townsend, MA. Gleefully posing for a photo after a day's hard work with Lieutenant Dan, the tiny paralyzed kitten, who is being rehabbed at ARNO to (hopefully) one day walk again.
TOWNSEND -- For 43 North Middlesex Regional High School students, a February vacation trip to New Orleans became the trip of a lifetime.
Every year since Hurricane Katrina devastated the region, teacher and service learning advisor Raymond Kane has led a group of students to Louisiana to rebuild houses, sort donations food and connect with people who were affected by the tragedy.
But for the many of the students, the personal impact was just as great as the work they were doing.
"It changes your life," said senior Matt White, also one of the program's coordinators. "It made me realize what I want to do in life and that I want to do something to give back, like maybe human rights law."
Junior Marie Shepherd went on the trip for the second time this year because of the impact it had on her last year.
"I didn't expect it to be as much fun as it was, but you create relationships that are life-changing and long-lasting," Shepherd said.
About 90 people applied for the 8-day program this year, going through a rigorous application process that included essays and teacher approvals. The program is open to any sophomore, junior or senior in the school.
But rather than just going on an isolated trip, the students chosen to participate in the service learning group commit to 10 months of fundraising and service in the lead-up to New Orleans.
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Have Pets? Got a good vacuum cleaner?
This is Bette Davis. She is a two-year old bombshell of a cat. If you are interested in Bette Davis, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shedding is such an issue to most homemakers. Vacuum cleaners are even marketed and sold on how well they handle pet hair.
Cats and their fur
Cats groom themselves when healthy. The loose hair in their coat sticks to their tongue and is swallowed. Swallowed hair is naturally digested and is eliminated. When too much hair is swallowed, it collects into a nasty ‘hairball’ and cannot move through their digestive tract. That hairball is then regurgitated.
The more you brush your cat, the less loose hair will build up in their coat to cause shedding and hairballs.
Fatty acids produce a healthier coat and reduce shedding and hairballs. Cats do not always get the essential fatty acids and fiber that they need for good nutrition. A good nutritional supplement rich in omega fatty acids should be used to help fill in those nutritional gaps. Supplements labeled for hairballs are usually the best ones to purchase and use. Look for Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, zinc and biotin in the ingredients. All of these help produce healthy skin and coats. Fiber helps move the hair through the digestive tract.
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Celebrate The Season!
Holiday Giving and Food Drive
This is the time of year most people prefer to make donations to their favorite charity for a year end tax deduction. We certainly don't want to discourage you from doing that. This year has been particularly lean for donations, but think it has been lean across the board for most non-profits who depend on donations to sustain their programs and their existence.
There are also a lot of people (statistics show about 46%) who prefer to give goods as opposed to money. On our donation link we state what we use and need on a regular basis (www.animalrescueneworleans.org/donate.html).
This year we are giving those who prefer to give goods a very easy way not only to order what we need, but no worry about shipping either. The shipping costs are built into your order amount. We have had great success since we started this in the last two weeks, and hoping you can help us reach our goal of ten weeks worth of food to stock our food pantry for our shelter pets and our indigent families and their pets as well.
The Holiday Food Drive is open and continues through December 31. Please consider helping to make our Food Drive successful, and then it will allow us to put the $500 a week we spend on just food to use elsewhere to assist our shelter pets. Medical costs on shelter pets is our largest expense and always will be, since the majority of pets we take in, or help in our Pet Retention Program (for low income or indigent families), are injured, senior, or have immediate health issues which have made them 'unadoptable' in other arenas. Most shelters can afford the medical expenses with a veterinarian on staff, but what they cannot afford is the time to get these pets well. Other than euthanasia, 'time' is the next biggest difference between no-kill and municipal shelters. Time is the resource that they have the least ability to give, whereas at ARNO's shelter, time to heal and to rehab is the one resource we do have available as a no-kill shelter.
We appeal to you to give, if you are able, to our Holiday Food Drive, but more important, please pass on to other animal lovers who might want to help even in a small way. It all adds up! Here is the link to our food drive... quick and easy for anyone to give!
Funds are always needed, too, so please consider making a monetary donation on our secure site via your credit card or electronic check at www.animalrescueneworleans.org/donate.html. If you want to mail us a check, make sure it's dated before the end of the year to take as a tax deduction for 2013. Mail checks to 271 Plauche Street, New Orleans, LA 70123.
God bless you all, and hoping you have a very warm and wonderful holiday season. We thank you for all your gifts, your kindnesses, your volunteer hours and your donations. Without you, none of what we have accomplished for 7400+ pets would have been possible.
Lucky Kitty Cat Picked the Right Door
Animal Rescue New Orleans (ARNO) gets dozens of daily emails, beaucoup phone calls on our rescue line, and even emergency texts for help throughout the night. Often help is needed for a pet that has been abandoned and is injured. It is horrible for us to be in the position that funds are so tight that we have to say 'no.' Mostly we say 'yes,' praying that we come up with the funds to pay the vet before the end of the month and hoping that the injuries are not so severe that we add another thousand bucks to our bill.
One of those middle of the night phone texts came from a wonderful young lady living in St. Bernard Parish. She heard the cries from her backdoor... it was the first chilly night of the season... the kitty cat was begging for help. Being an animal lover she could not resist opening the door and putting out a small bowl of food and water. Yet the cat kept crying. She leaned down to pet the sweet orange tabby and to her horror she saw that his tail had been ripped off leaving a necrotic wound that was obviously causing him great pain. That's when ARNO got a frantic call... she could not afford to help the cat, and had no where else to turn to but ARNO. Because of funds being so low, we have prepared ourselves to say 'no.' There is only so much we can do and unfortunately funds are needed to pay the vet bills. This time, we just could not say 'no,' and felt we had to help with the agreement that the Good Samaritan would foster the cat if we took care of the medical issues for the sweet boy.
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ARNO Volunteer Honored
Abigail Loupe, long-time ARNO volunteer and senior at Mt. Carmel Academy, has been honored with a Points of Light award for her service. Points of Light has honored nearly 5000 individuals who have dedicated their time and efforts to various volunteer organizations.
Planning Where to Go Key When Evacuating
Hurricane season might start on June 1, but this is the time of year when the threat is highest for a storm to make landfall. Last week we talked about planning for an evacuation with your pet and making sure you have proper transportation to get you, your family and your pets out of harm’s way safely. This week, we will talk about finding a place to evacuate to once you get out of town.
I cannot stress enough that early evacuation is key. When you are leaving with children and pets, you are encouraged to leave early before conditions become severe, and give yourself plenty of time to reach your destination. If you wait for a mandatory evacuation and require the assistance of emergency personnel, there is no guarantee that your pets will be assisted as well.
Make sure that your pet is wearing a collar with up-to-date identification. Your cell phone number should be on your pets’ tags and an alternate phone number as well. Having your pet microchipped with a chip that is registered and up to date will increase your chances of being reunited in the unlikely event that you become separated.
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Introducing Pets to New Family Members
Your dog is your baby, the center of your world — that is, until you have a baby.
However, bringing a new baby into the family does not have to mean your dog is left out in the cold.
Your dog has had your undivided attention and is used to being pampered, so when you bring home a baby, it is natural that some jealously will occur. Setting aside even a few minutes a day to spend quality time with your pet can go a long way.
Just like babies, dogs are creatures of habit; therefore, keeping the routine as normal as possible will eliminate acting out after the baby is home. Also, allowing your dog to explore the baby’s nursery, and exposing him to the smells of baby items such as powders, lotions and diapers will help your dog become familiar with the new smells and surroundings that come with a new baby.
Once your child is mobile, it is crucial to supervise all interactions between your child and the dog. This is a great opportunity to teach your child boundaries and the importance of being gentle with your dog.
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Cat or Dog: Which One Makes the Best Pet
Dog vs Cat: an age-old question and has been battled out by strictly canine lovers and hissed at by the feline fanciers. The truth is, they both make great pets. The real question is: which one is the right pet for you?
First on the list, rule out allergies.
Lots of people are allergic to cats, and some people have allergic reactions to some dogs. There are 'hypo-allergenic' dogs that have hair (like us), and not fur and do not shed, or shed incrementally. Poodles, ShihTzus, Cockers, etc. are examples of pets who need to be 'groomed' and much less a problem to humans with allergies.
The undercoat on dogs that have 'fur' (that do not need grooming, but do shed) usually have at least two coats to their fur. The top coat contains guard hairs, coarser and longer than the undercoat, but does not insulate the pet like the flyaway undercoat that sheds with the seasons. The undercoat is lost during the warmer months, but unfortunately not all at once, needing regular brushing or combing. Anyone who has a Northern breed dog, i.e. Malamute, Husky, German Shepherd, etc. knows that you can practically knit a half dozen sweaters if you saved all the undercoat these dogs molt each year.
As far as hypo-allergenic cats the Cornish Rex would qualify being hairless, except for down. Most breeds of cats have three different types of fur in their coats. The outer fur or guard hairs, a middle layer called the awn hair, and the down hair undercoat, which is very fine and only 1 cm long. Cornish Rexes only have the down undercoat. The Sphinx cat is totally hairless.
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Feral Cats: Love Them and Leave Them (Neutered)
‘Community’ cats provide a very valuable service. After Katrina, in many areas, the feral [wild] cats were all dead or temporarily gone. Neighborhoods were barely being rebuilt and at the same time inundated with snakes coming to feed on the rodent population. Feral cats continue to be the most effective control of rodents and insects, pests that are endemic in a sub-tropic port city.
What is necessary is that the cats be spayed/neutered to prevent continued population growth. Once sterilized the cats do not give off pheromones that attract more cats into their area. While they are territorial and remain in the area, after sterilization cats will not fight, yowl or mate. They will hunt even when well fed and neutered.
Removal of cats is always unsuccessful, as a ‘vacuum effect’ occurs and new cats will replace the ones removed within four to six months. Relocating feral cats is a long and laborious process. There are not enough barns existing to house all the ferals that exist or that people want ‘gone.’ (Plus they still must be spayed/neutered before being relocated and vaccinated.) Relocation does not always work either. Cats are territorial and have a built in ‘compass’ and they will return to their original safe neighborhood if at all possible. We have all heard stories of cats going hundreds, even thousands, of miles to return to their home.
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Keep Pets Safe from Dangerous Plants
(12/27/12) — By Traci D. Howerton, Social Media Editor, as published in The Advocate, New Orleans edition
We all want to keep our pets happy and healthy. While we may do a great job at feeding them and keeping them groomed and up-to-date on vaccinations and preventive medicines, we can sometimes overlook a less-than-obvious danger: plants.
But they’re there, sometimes as close as our own backyards, such as the sago palm, or in the holiday decorations, such as poinsettias.
The following is a list of some of the plants most toxic to pets.
Sago palm: Also known as the Palm Sunday palm, the entire plant and the seeds in particular contain a potent toxin called cycasin that can be fatal, even if the dog only eats a single seed. Ingestion of any part or amount of this plant warrants immediate emergency treatment.
Azalea: Ingesting even just a few leaves can cause serious issues such as upset stomach, drooling, loss of appetite, weakness and leg paralysis, and in some cases, coma or death.
Daffodils: They contain poisonous alkaloids that can cause vomiting, excessive salivation, diarrhea, convulsions, tremors and heart problems. The bulbs are the most dangerous part of the plant.
Dieffenbachia (Dumb Cane): This plant is often recommended as an ideal houseplant for natural air purification. When eaten, it not only burns the mouth and throat, but causes the esophagus to swell, potentially blocking the dog’s airway.
Hibiscus: Signs of ingestion include vomiting and diarrhea.
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Keeping the Cold Out Warms Even the Heart
(12/11/12) — By Lise McComiskey, Feral Dog Coordinator
This morning, as I walked around the shelter, still quite cozy from the eight patio heaters disbursed throughout, and watched the pups as they stayed snuggled up on their blankets, I thought about where I was four years ago this morning.... I was sad that Amelia was shivering in an abandoned house. I and ARNO took care of Amelia the rottie for nine months on the streets until we could bring her to safety (read Amelia’s story), but it broke my heart that morning that I pulled up and it was snowing, yes snowing, in New Orleans, and Amelia was huddled inside on the bare floors of the abandoned house. By late morning, the bottom half of dog houses, stuffed with straw, were tucked under the house and blankets now covered the bare floors of the abandoned house. On any given day for the rest of that winter, that is usually where I could find Amelia, snuggled in her straw or on her blankets.
Since that day, Amelia is no longer on the street and she has a wonderful home and family of her own which she shares with two other dogs, one of them her daughter from a litter we rescued before her. (picture of Amelia, on the left, with her sister Pangea) Amelia will never be cold again. ARNO has helped many, many dogs since Amelia -- up to 7100 currently -- and we continue to help as many as we can and sometimes that means blankets in dog houses for dogs who live outdoors, propane to the tune of eight or nine tanks a night at the shelter, and of course, the blankets our own shelter dogs and love so much.
Please help ARNO out this winter, stop by and donate some old blankets, quilts, towels, comforters or take a bag or two offsite to launder so that we ALWAYS have clean blankets to share with our pups. Donate to ARNO because it really does take a community to keep all of our efforts on track.
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NEW Shelter Hours:
Shelter Open Every Day
If you are interested in adopting a pet, we ask that you contact an adoption counselor at AdoptFromArno@yahoo.com for an adoption application and an appt. to interact with the pet(s) of your choice. No pets are adopted/released until a completed application is approved.
ARNO is running CRITICALLY low on donations and more specifically, CAT FOOD, please help us feed these animals. We have a few volunteers to go out in the field to feed, but without any food, their help will be seriously hindered. Please donate so we can buy some food.
PLEASE CONSIDER FOSTERING AN ANIMAL.
ARNO has an ongoing need for foster homes to provide animals a safe and loving environment until transport, reunion and adoption arrangements can be made.
Learn More >>
Donations Urgently Needed to Repair Shelter
We sheltered in place running on two generators, and three of us were there 24 hours a day from Tuesday thru Friday night. Friday night our power was restored. All the animals are fine. Twenty dogs were put in foster homes and a few cats to give us the room to keep all animals under the main warehouse roof. Animals remained calm through the storm, as they all saw us every five minutes and we think the 'white noise' of the generators kept them from hearing the roaring winds and rain.
First Isaac rescue
Right now we need to get our house back in order... we need donations, no matter how small, to rebuild our back kennels (roofs are gone), and part of our back fence (60 ft long 6 ft high wooden fence) with a driveway gate we have been needing for another exit in case of fire, and to pay for our electrical problems which has 1/3 of our shelter down... We can also use Purina Cat Chow and Kitten Chow... litter, dawn detergent, paper towels, liquid laundry detergent, etc.
Damaged roofs in back of shelter
We have a critical dog we had to place at the only emergency room open at Metairie Small Animal Hospital, Tango, who was suffering from late stages heartworm disease. Please help us even with a little donation to help us with that medical bill.
We know most in our region have undergone much worse that our shelter has, and lots are still without power in Jefferson Parish, including some of our fosters who took dogs for the storm... until we get our electrical fixed we cannot be fully operational and the fosters need to bring back the animals they have sheltered. People are coming to us with found animals that we cannot take, so please consider helping us get back up so we can continue helping the homeless animals from the street and the storms.
More shelter roof damage
If you or your friends can spare $10 we would have enough to do all and get back to being the only no-kill shelter in the region.
We do understand if you cannot give, times are tough everywhere. Please consider please passing this message on to friends and associates. Thank you so much, and God bless and keep everyone safe. Say special prayers for our friend and foster, Tina Bernard, who lost everything in Braithwaite, Plaquemines Parish, as well as Jerry and Cheryl Trigo, who lost everything in Laplace, St. John the Baptist Parish. Jerry and Cheryl are living at the animal shelter in Laplace where they were employed, along with their six dogs who made it in the unexpected flooding of their parish. We send prayers for both Tina's and Jerry's pets who did not make it. So very sad.
Donations are tax deductible to the full extent the law allows. You can donate online at www.animalrescueneworleans.org/donate.html
Thank you for your prayers and well wishes... our internet is sketchy, as is our phone service, so please forgive us if we have not returned your call or email.
(3/22/12) — By Lise McComiskey, from her blog Sheltered Lives
Kelly's short life was spent on the end of a very short chain until a rescuer stepped in.
By Sheila Stroup, The Times-Picayune, October 27, 2011 | Reprinted
The book "Love at First Bark: How Saving a Dog Can Sometimes Help You Save Yourself," is laugh-out-loud funny, as well as being heartfelt and inspiring.
(June 2, 2011)
Rescuers go to great lengths to find suitable forever homes for pets.
(August 12, 2011) By Patty Meehan, Best Friends outreach and Network volunteer
Animal rescue isn't a solitary effort. The coordinated efforts of animal rescue groups and volunteers across the area and the country are making a difference in the lives of pets and their owners every day.
(July 22 , 2010)
Disasters test the limits of devotion as large numbers of affected owners have been surrendering their pets. Learn how you can help.