All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing ~ Edmund Burke

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Before you judge Manual Trap from bigblackcat.org Remember Me Thursday Remember Me Thursday

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*** DRUMROLL ***

Okay folks!!! *** BIG DRUMROLL *** *lil twirl* *raises top hat* As part of National Feral Cats Awareness week 2014 *cymbols CLASH* we’d like to introduce to you *stray cat caterwaul chorus* the launch of the Fantastic *applause* the Magnificent *enthusiastic applause* the Fantabulous *thunderous applause* TNR MANUAL for IRELAND!!!! *the crowd goes WIIIIILLLLLLD* 

Download it here (7.7 Mb):

The TNR Manual for Ireland

*** Please NOTE: the links in the manual are NOT yet live – see end of this post for temporary links to the information ***
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What Kind of Animal are You?

Well, if you’re reading this, you’re probably a human animal! And I’m guessing you’re interested in animal welfare, or you wouldn’t be visiting my pages. What I really want to look at here is where you lie on the Animal Welfare/Animal Rights scale. Do you know?

Why Does It Matter?

If you’ve ever been involved in discussions about animal welfare, be they virtual or in reality, you’re bound to have noticed the odd heated argument between individuals who you might expect to be on the same page. Maybe you’ve been involved in one yourself? Heated or otherwise, the variety of viewpoints expressed can usually be brought down to one thing – where individuals’ animal welfare philosophies lie on the continuum between pure Animal Welfare and pure Animal Rights.

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What To Do When Your Dog Goes Missing

Interesting stats today from a UK survey by OnePoll on behalf of the Dogs TrustWhat happens when dogs go missing? I’d imagine our Irish stats will be slightly different, probably more dogs straying, but otherwise not dissimilar.

Do you know what to do if your companion goes missing? Find out here!

The Survey Says …

Lots of stuff to be aware of in the UK survey. Let’s go through it with an Irish perspective, starting with:

29 per cent of dog owners lose their pet at least once during its lifetime.

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Lexi Wants to Play!

Lexi joined me at the end of July to be fostered for KLAWS Kerry. Over a month later and we’ve not found a home for her yet. I thought I’d share some more information with you and, fingers crossed, we’ll find her a home soon when everyone realises how gorgeous she is.

Lexi’s also appealing to everyone to join in with Remember Me Thursday – remembering all the companion animals who didn’t find their forever homes and those, like Lexi, who are still waiting. Light a candle on 25th September for Lexi. Even better – adopt her! Make her day!

She was a very shy girl when she arrived, and had obviously reasons to distrust humans. At the same time, she’s equally obviously known love at some point, because she loves snorgles and isn’t in the least bit feral. Something has happened to make her so wary and she’s warming up very quickly now she knows she’s safe.

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Remember Me Thursday – 25th September

Have you heard about the fabulous initiative Remember Me Thursday? Started by the Helen Woodward Animal Centre in America, it’s an adoption drive with a difference – and with international relevance. Your participation is key to promoting companion animal adoption from shelters and rescues – and saving lives!

What does it involve? – lighting a candle on Remember Me Thursday, September 25, 2014 and spreading the word. Read on to find out everything you need to know about Remember Me Thursday, adoption, tools for the campaign, what you can do and to remember the companion animals who didn’t make it – and those who are still waiting to come home.

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Do Unwanted Animals Need to Burn to Death to Get Noticed?

Check out this fabulous, sensitive article from Louise Glazebrook on the Huffington Post, putting into words what I’ve been thinking the past few days – Do Unwanted Dogs Need to Burn to Death to Get Noticed?

As the article says:

Following the terrible arson attack at a Manchester dog home last week, where 53 poor dogs lost their lives, it’s been incredible to see the generous, heartfelt response in the press and on social media. Many dog lovers across the UK have pulled together and raised an unbelievable £1 million to help rebuild the home after the fire. It’s a true testament to what a dog-loving nation we are. Or is it…?

It’s desperately sad that 53 dogs lost their lives in the fire. What is also desperately sad are the statistics from the annual Dogs’ Trust survey which were released last week. The figure that hurt the most was that in the UK, 21 stray dogs are put to sleep every day. Per year, our dog-loving nation puts down approx. 7,805 unwanted dogs a year.

… It’s not a fire, granted, but it’s not the way dogs should be treated in this nation of ‘dog-lovers’.

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MMD

Passing on appreciation and praise to everyone involved in animal welfare!

Got an absolutely lovely unsolicited comment on the contact page of the site yesterday. I’m sure it’s directed at everyone involved in animal welfare so I thought I’d share it with y’all to pass on to your fave rescue people and orgs to give em a wee boost.

I am Christine, a mere human being who stumbled upon your site, and I would like to say THANK YOU for caring for these animals. People who do this good stuff deserves appreciation and praise. Thank you for all who works for this site for doing a very nice thing. 

MMD

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Happy Home Checks

Animal Rescue Cobh (ARC) asked me to do a homecheck in Bantry recently for a lovely pair of odd-eyed sisters. Passed with flying colours, the sisters will be going to their new forever home very soon! I thought I’d use the opportunity to share some info about odd-eyed cats – and home checks!

Odd-Eyed Cats

The kittens are especially gorgeous due to their unusual eyes. The technical term, heterochromia iridum, is a difference in colour in the iris (hence the name the Hi Sisters). Complete heterochromia refers to two different coloured eyes, like this pair. Partial heterochromia refers to different colours within the iris.

Either the white or the white-spotted gene is the usual cause of genetic heterochromia. These girls probably have the dominant white gene, which masks any other colour genes to make a completely white cat (the white spotted gene is responsible for bi-colour and tuxedo cats). Eye colour, specifically the colour of the irises, is determined primarily by the concentration and distribution of melanin. Both the white and the white-spotted genes prevent melanin (pigment) granules from reaching one eye during development. Kittens’ eyes change colour, if they’re going to change, at around 6 to 8 weeks old. So, since all cats have blue eyes when they’re born, it’s the blue eye that is the odd-eye.

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Bruce’s Happy Ending

It’s a while ago now, but you might remember Bruce who came to me in February 2012 to be fostered for RAWR. He was a poor soul on arrival – scarily thin, untrained and a bit nervous – but a very enthusiastic dog, eager to learn and faithfully by my side wherever I went. He was with me for around six weeks and then bravely headed off to the UK to find his forever home.

Well, I got a couple of fab emails over the last couple of days from Carmen, his new people! As you know I love hearing how happy my fosterees end up, and I love sharing the news too! So, here’s some info and pics for your delectation. I confess I was shocked when I went back and looked at Bruce’s condition when he first arrived. The main pic here shows him then and now. This is why so many of us volunteer in animal rescue!

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Stamps Promote Breeding

I am so sorry to see An Poste’s new stamps that promote breeding cats – not a moggie among them. Every time you put one of these stamps on an envelope you’ll be encouraging breeding yourself.

Here’s my thoughts – and a few alternatives.

What’re the Problems?

A spokesperson from An Post said:

With four glamorous cats on An Post’s new 68c stamps, this set will appeal to both cat lovers and breeders alike – they are simply the cat’s pyjamas!

An estimated 180,000 kittens die, with no glamour, every year in Ireland because of the overpopulation problem. With too many cats and not enough homes, breeding directly contributes to the problem. I doubt anyone who is involved in animal welfare in Ireland will find the stamp set appealing.

Sadly the set will appeal to the section of the public who know little or nothing about cat welfare in Ireland. And shelters will see the result in six months to a year – increased surrenders of pedigree cats, when the appeal has worn off and reality has sunk in.

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Cock of the Walk

Got a call from Katie today, around 5pm. She, her daughter Lola and her friend Nadia had spotted a peacock walking up Church Street in Bantry, cool as you please. So far, cars had driven round him, but the girls reckoned he wasn’t going to last long. They had him cornered in a triangle of grass and pebbles just off the road, beside a field – he’d been about to head down to the main road and this seemed their best option to keep him safe. What to do?

I hadn’t a clue. But I hopped in the van and drove round – only seconds away, despite Bantry ‘rush hour’ traffic. Sure enough Katie and Nadia were keeping the big guy contained safely – and Lola was kept well away for her own safety since she’s only wee still (but don’t tell her I said so!). So I phoned Ghostbusters. No I didn’t – I phoned Jennifer at the vets and said ‘????’. And Jen went off to make a few calls.

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