Thursday, July 7, 2016

Rescue From Baku - Escaping Streets Of Death

In rescue we deal with many heartbreaking situations on a constant basis. However, sometimes there are situations that go beyond anything we deal with frequently. On Saturday, June 25th Little Shelter rescued 11 dogs from a certain death situation.

While Little Shelter normally deals with local rescue based in our surrounding communities, we also have Nation Wide Rescue with our Passage To Freedom Program. On that Saturday our program went even further than we had previously imagined, as we were called on to save lives from the other side of the world.

Many countries have little to no animal rights or laws that are enforced to protect animals from abusive situations. Baku, is one such area. The streets are overwhelmed with stray cats and dogs, and the governments way of handling that problem has been to use methods of shooting, beating, poisoning and burning (sometimes still alive) animals that are found roaming around.

Out of compassion, a few groups have formed in Baku to try and rescue as many of these animals as possible. One such group is Baku Street Dog Rescue. However, rescue efforts are difficult due to lack of resources, the sheer number of animals in need and the difficulties faced with getting the animals into safety. How did this come to affect Little Shelter? Read on...

An urgent call was received late afternoon on Thursday, June 23rd. Baku Street Dog Rescue had 11 Dogs that they had pulled from the streets and were currently transporting to the USA. However, plans had changed last minute and the dogs suddenly had no where to go upon arrival. Little Shelter didn't hesitate to step in and take all 11 dogs. This included 3 mothers whose puppies were pulled by another rescue group but the moms themselves were left behind. Little Shelter will always take the mom when rescuing a litter of puppies! The transport with the dogs would be arriving early to mid day on Saturday which left the staff of Little Shelter less than 48hrs to make preparations for the dogs arrival.

Coming from overseas and being stressed, we wanted to make sure the Baku dogs had a quarantined area for the first two weeks they stay at the shelter. This is a protective measure for both shelter residents and the Baku dogs. A quarantined area also allows them to adjust to their new surroundings at their own pace, giving them peace of mind and space to relax.

The rest of Thursday and all of Friday were spent with staff moving dogs into different kennels, washing and sterilizing rooms and cages, printing photographs of the Baku dogs, tagging each cage with the individual dogs information and preparing our intake paperwork. This may not sound like a lot, but it essentially required the entire shelter grounds to be rearranged as we already were pretty full from a recent local rescue operation.

On Saturday, the transport from Baku arrived at noon with two of the rescuers coming as the dogs flight buddies. This was their first time seeing where the dogs went after leaving the airport. A full team of Little Shelter staff was waiting ready for them. Each dog was taken swiftly off the transport, photographed, tagged, paperwork processed and led to their new kennel. The goal was to make the transfer as quick and stress free as possible for the dogs. The members from Baku Street Dog Rescue were very grateful that these dogs whose future was undetermined now had somewhere safe to go. Some happy tears were shed at the moment of realization of what was happening hit. 

The Baku dogs are all happy, healthy and safe at Little Shelter. This Saturday will mark their two weeks of quarantine. The dogs will be available for adoption this Saturday and given their sweet personalities and beautiful looks, we do not expect them to be here long. The dogs range in age from about 3 months old to 2 years old.

Little Shelter focuses on local rescue, but we were called to step in for these 11 precious lives. These 11 dogs represent that the overpopulation problem of animals does not belong to one area alone, nor is it up to just once rescue group to solve. By uniting together, educating and helping other groups when it is possible, we can overcome this issue together so fewer animals will never know what a "good boy/girl" is.


 Hope you enjoyed the article & the sneak peek at some of the rescues. Come down this Saturday, July 9th to meet them in person!

Little Shelter
33 Warner Rd,
Huntington, NY 11743

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Summer Time Is Here! Here Are Some Helpful Tips To Keep Your Animals Safe!

Summer is a great time for pet owners and pets alike to get outside and be more active. There are many places that are becoming more welcoming to our four legged friends, making it easier to take them with us on travel. However, there are some precautions every pet owner should take when bringing their furry companions along on trips or even just out in the yard.

If you're headed to the beach (or anywhere) with the pup in the car, make sure you get all shopping done prior to them coming with you. In the summer heat, even leaving the windows cracked open is not enough to prevent dangerous temperatures from occurring in a vehicle. If you need to get something for your trip, try to find a market that has a drive thru or see if you can take the animal in the store with you.
Also, while "Fido" might prefer to sit shotgun, an animal is always safer traveling in the back seat of the car. There are many seat belt adapters on the market made for keeping your furry friend safe.

Sun & Surf!
Believe it or not some dogs can get sunburned, especially on their nose. This is something to keep in mind while spending the day at the beach. Many dogs like jumping through the waves, but the blazing sun can do real damage to their skin. Fortunately, there are a few doggie sunscreens on the market in a variety of different applications.

Keeping The Morning Jog!
If running with you dog is a normal part of your routine, make sure to do it in early morning or late evening. The direct afternoon sun is too hot and can cause dehydration for both animal and owner alike. If you normally run on the road, try to find hiking trails instead. The woods will provide shade and will be cooler than running in direct sun and the dirt trails are better for paw pads. If you do go running on the asphalt, test the temperature first to make sure your dog won't get burns on his paw pads. Stand barefoot on the asphalt in direct sun, if it's too hot for you to walk comfortably barefoot, it's too hot for the dog. (This test should also be done before allowing kitty outside if you have an indoor/outdoor cat.)

  Also, make sure to take water along, when ever you stop to rest allow puppy to drink.

Keep Off The Grass!
When walking your dog, keep them off neighbors yards. During this time of year many people put down fertilizer and pesticides that are toxic to our beloved pets. This also applies to anyone who has an indoor/outdoor cat. Kitty is always safer being kept inside, especially since cats groom themselves and will end up ingesting any chemicals that gets on their fur. 
Tall grasses can also contain ticks, fleas and other things we don't want our animals getting into or coming home with. Talk to your vet about different flea and tick preventatives available and which options might be best for you and your animals.

Watch For Puddles!
During the hot months a lot of cars can leak fluids from overheating or expanding. Unfortunately, dogs and cats both find the taste of antifreeze to be sweet and might try to drink it. Antifreeze is highly toxic if ingested so make sure you keep a watch on your dog and any puddles they might try to drink from. Since cats like to travel and you can't always watch where kitty goes exploring, think about keeping kitty inside.

Tips & Tricks To Beat The Heat:
  • Always keep a fresh water source available and filled. You can put a water bowl under a dripping spigot so it will automatically replenish. To encourage cats to drink more, try getting a pet water fountain as the cycling water encourages them to drink more.
  • If you need to cool down a pet fast, be careful that you don't put their body into shock. Use room temp/slightly warm water to "soak" down an animal who is too hot. This helps to make sure the temperature change is not so drastic. Alternatively you can wipe an animals paw pads with rubbing alcohol which will also lower their body temperature as it evaporates.
  • With a damp towel, wipe the inside of the animals ears. This will help disperse heat similarly to the paw pad trick.
  • Get one of the self spray misters and use it on your dog.
  • Many animals like to lay on tile floors on a hot day because it is cool. You can make this even more effective by placing a damp towel on the tile for them to lay on. 
  • If you have your dog outside in the yard with you for extended periods of time, make sure their is a shady spot that they can lay down to escape the sun.
Most importantly, spend time together and have fun!

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

A Happy Tale of Tails... Jerry & Carvel Go Home!

“Boys will be boys no matter how old they get and these two share the story of a life time. At 10 years old, these two little chihuahuas have spend their entire life together. From early days of puppy hood, to being men in their prime, they have been by each others side. Now in their golden years, as grumbly ol' men they suddenly found themselves at Little Shelter when their owner could no longer care for them. This odd couple is always there for each other, they eat together, walk together and sleep together...”

Some of you might remember this excerpt from the story Little Shelter posted a few weeks ago about our two lovable chihuahuas Jerry & Carvel. I'm very happy to announce that their story got it's happy ending!

After being at Little Shelter for a couple of months, Jerry & Carvel were whisked away off into the sunset to their furever home this past weekend. As the celebration and festivities carried on at Little Shelter's 89th Anniversary this past Sunday, an even bigger celebration was going on inside the adoption office. A family who are long time friends and supporters of Little Shelter, came in to ask about Jerry and Carvel after hearing their story. Then before anyone knew it, the dynamic duo were off to their new home. We can not think of a better way to celebrate the anniversary of Little Shelter than a happy ending to their story. Everyone at Little Shelter wishes the best for these precious boys and their new family, may there be many happy days ahead of you!

We want to thank everyone who liked and shared their story, it is because YOU that their furever family found them. Thank you!

Friday, April 15, 2016

Kitten Season Has Begun....

This Just In At Little Shelter Animal Rescue & Adoption Center....

Spring brings us to the beginning of kitten season. This is just one of the many "bottle baby" litters we expect to have this season. While it's great to be able to give everyone a sneak peak at some of the kittens to soon be available. There's more reasons to write to you.

"Bottle babies" are very common in rescue. It means the kittens are found without the mother or for specific reasons can not be breast feed from the mama cat. The staff here will take on the challenge no matter how young the kittens are. However, a lot of work goes into caring for these newborns and a lot of resources.

Bottle babies depending on age need to be bottle fed anywhere from every 2 hours to every 4 hours until they begin eating kitten chow on their own. This means someone needs to be with them 24/7 for up to 5-6 weeks depending on their age. Also, they need someone to help them go to the bathroom because at this age they need stimulation to do so (a warm damp washcloth or paper towel on the butt). At the same time, they need to be kept in a clean area where they can't come into contact with another animal as their immune system is still being developed. Lastly and most importantly, these kittens need interaction, love, attention, someone to play with them and hold them, socialization.

Each litter that comes in is quickly checked, medically treated (if possible), cleaned, and sent right out into foster care. Besides occasional checkups we won't see these kittens again until they are ready to go up for adoption. A Foster Care person, is someone who works with the shelter and brings these kittens into their home promising to care for them until their old enough to come back to the shelter and go into the kitten adoption room. Little Shelter provides the "Foster Parent" with everything they will need to take care of the kittens. Some of these items include:
  • Beds
  • Cages
  • Kitten Formula
  • Kitten Food
  • Towels
  • Toys
  • Medicine (If Applicable)
 Usually when a Foster Parent takes on a litter, we try to line them up with kittens that match their level of experience. A new Foster Parent will usually start off with older kittens who are already eating on their own and work towards handling the younger bottle babies. However, this leaves us with two problems. Even though many Fosters double up and take more than one litter, their are still many more kittens in need of rescue than the number of fosters we have available to help care for them. The other problem is we really need donations to help care for these kittens, as you can see by the list of just some of the supplies needed.

Please consider donating to help the fight against overpopulation today. If you can donate any of the items on the list, or make a donation through our website. Click Here Anything you can contribute does make a difference.
If you want to get involved, call our Cattery for find out more about becoming a Foster Parent for Little Shelter's kittens. The more Foster Parents we have, the more kittens we can rescue. The season is just getting started, call today and join our Foster Family. (631-368-8770 et.32)

Being a Foster Parent has so many rewards, between knowing that because of you these lives have been saved, to the love of a kitten as it cries for your attention. If you have never fostered, it is truly one of the most rewarding experiences in life. You will constantly be amazed with each individual kitten, their different personalities and how they develop. Plus raising a bottle baby to the time it's old enough to run around and play is just a marvel in itself. I started in animal rescue as a Foster Parent, so I'm speaking from my own personal experiences. Till next time.


Make a Difference Today
Little Shelter
33 Warner Rd
Huntington, NY 11743

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

The Importance of Spay/Neuter With Pets

February is Spay and Neuter Awareness Month with World Spay Day falling on the 23rd. To help raise support and awareness, I am posting an article on why having your pet fixed may have more benefits then some owners might be aware of.

There are many reasons to have your cat or dog fixed, a lot of people know about getting a pet fixed to stop unwanted breeding. However, many still are not aware of just how crucial getting your pet fixed for even it's own well being.

Unlike humans, cats can go into heat about every 3 weeks while dogs can vary depending on their size. Some small dogs go into heat 3 times a year, the largest dogs usually only once a year.

As a pet matures, both male and females will try to wander for breeding. Some people have the misconception that only a male will wander off away from it's home, but a female is even more likely to wander due to instincts persuasion. Unfixed pets are more likely to go missing than fixed pets who have less drive to seek out others or establish territory.

Cancer is another reason to get your pet fixed. If you get your female pet spayed, you eliminate the possibility of ovarian cancer ever developing. Also, a pet that is spayed before her first heat cycle has only a .5% chance of every developing breast cancer. Each time she goes into head the chances of developing breast cancer increase. If you wait till the pet is 2 1/2 years old, there will be no added protection against breast cancer from having her spayed. For male pets, having them neutered eliminates the risk of testicular cancer.

Getting an animal spayed/neutered does not have a negative impact on an animals psychology, especially when fixed young. If you have your animal fixed at a young age, you will decrease the chances of the animal ever becoming aggressive towards other pets for territorial issues. While nothing replaces the need of proper behavioral training in pets, having an animal fixed young does show to help prevent a problem with sexual based territorial aggression ever developing in a majority of pets.

Animals getting fat and lazy from being fixed is just a myth. If your animal gets fixed and suddenly is becoming less active and obese, talk to your vet about a proper diet and exercise regiment. Having an animal fixed is not the cause of this, it means that the animal is either eating too much or not getting enough exercise.

Other reasons for getting a cat/dog fixed:

A male left intact is more likely to develop a habit of spraying to mark his territory, this includes your furniture, walls, clothes, and anything else he deems his.

A male left intact is more prone to be aggressive and will start fights with other animals inside the same household, this can lead to expensive veterinary bills due to infections caused by claw and teeth cuts.

A female left intact can become very vocal when she is in heat, constant yowling at all hours.

Even if your female cat is indoors only, outdoor male cats will still be able to scent her out and you might ended up dealing with constant cat fights in your yard as well as marking around and on your house.


Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Amazing Rescue and Adorable Babies!

Today I have some very special photos to share with you! Take a look at these 1 week old kittens!

There are five kittens in total, we believe them to be somewhere between 3 days to 1 week old. There are 3 tabbies, one solid white, and one solid black.  Our hard working staff got a call notifying us to a litter of kittens that had just been rescued from the rooftop of a building!

A lady had noticed the kittens on the rooftop of a building under construction from her apartment window. Concerned after not seeing the mother cat return for a few hours, she asked for help in getting the kittens. Once she had all five kittens safe in her apartment, she made a few phone calls. Eventually, one rescue group after another went down the phone chain until a Little Shelter staff member received a call about them.

Immediately, one of our staff members went to go and collect the kittens. Meeting the lady who rescued them half way, the kittens were carefully put into a carrier with plenty of blankets to keep the wee ones warm. Due to how young the kittens are, it was important to get them back to Little Shelter as quickly as possible so they could be fed. Babies this young need to eat every couple of hours.

All the kittens are currently safe and have been sent to foster care where they will have around the clock caretakers until they are big enough to be socialized. We are currently trying to see if the mother is still around. We would like nothing more than to reunite her with her kittens in a place they are safe and cared for, at Little Shelter.

Keep checking back for more to come!!!


Little Shelter
33 Warner Rd
Huntington, NY 11743

Friday, January 22, 2016

The Snow is coming....

So the verdict is in that this snow storm is happening. Today Little Shelter has been very busy in preparing itself incase we get a full on blizzard. Fingers are still crossed that we won't get as much snow as they are predicting but always better to play it on the safe side.

We have our snow shovels out, and pet safe ice melt ready to go!
Did you know regular ice melt can contain ingredients that are potentially harmful to your dogs paws and can be poisonous if ingested? So if possible, it's better to do a little research and try to find an ice melt that is non-toxic to pets. Regular ice melt contains ingredients that can dry out your dogs paws and potentially cause them to dry out and bleed. If you are taking your dog for a walk on salted sidewalks, it is recommended that you wipe down a dogs paws after the walk or have them wear booties to protect their paws.

In preparing for the snow storm here's a few other tips for pet owners:
  • Bring animals indoors, if for some reason you have an outdoor animal, try to make a spot where it can safely weather out the storm in a mud room, garage, basement, or spare bathroom. 
  • Don't leave animals unattended outside in the snow, even with the property fenced in. You never know how something might shift with the wind and snow, and an animal could potentially try to climb a mound or stack that is not stable. 
  • Even if your dog has a thick coat, keep an eye on how long they stay outside. Better to let them out for multiple short(er) play times than one long one where they might get too cold and possibly sick.
  • Especially for smaller dogs, but larger ones too: shovel paths for the animals to walk and "do there business". Small dogs can easily get buried in large snow drifts, and clumps of snow/ice between the toes of all sized dogs can be very discomforting, some dogs will limp due to the awkward feeling. 
  • Before letting your dogs run around in the snow, check that they are snow ready! Check the length of their claws, and make sure they are not too long. A long toe claw could potentially get stuck on something buried in the snow, or just caught on icy snow itself and leave the dog with a broken toe. OUCH!
  • If you dog is young, old, small, lean, short coated, or possibly non of the above, make sure they have a jacket ready so they don't risk getting sick out in the cold.  Not all dogs were meant for cold snowy weather, and sometimes, yes, the dog needs a sweater! When your dog comes in from play time in white, make sure you dry them off with a towel so they don't catch a chill.
  • Hot snacks! After snow play time, have some fun with your dog and give them extra treats, unseasoned cooked chicken or turkey can be an extra special snack to help warm them up.
These are just a few suggestions that we have to help you and your pet make the most of the snowy weather. Let me know what other things you do to make the best of the weather.