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New Sign – New Direction

posted August 21st, 2017 by
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Looking Back

New Sign – New Direction

 

New SignWhen you drive past 628 Wilson – look at the new sign.  It shows our van, PAAS Ride to Rescue, Pets for Life, our phone number and the very important words
“Pets for Life  Resource Center  918-240-7950”.

Two years ago our mission stated we would save thousands of homeless pets.  And, today, we are – – it’s just not the way it was originally envisioned.  As a transfer station, 30 – 45+ dogs (and some cats) head to a new home in Colorado every Tuesday night.  As a result, you see fewer homeless dogs and cats roaming the streets of Vinita.  Our Oklahoma partners, many of them municipal shelters, no longer face over-crowding in their kennels.  At the moment 28 rescues/shelters are our Oklahoma partners.  Many of them, in turn, rescue from other shelters/rescues – – so 35+ in total are part of our transfer program.  And the number continues to grow as the good word spreads.

A huge thanks goes to the PAAS Board who was willing to let us find a solution.  Next are our donors, each  and every one makes a difference in the life of one of our rescues.  Grants play a key role in the funding and growth of our programs.  Partnerships with organizations like Dumb Friends League of Colorado provide a destination point.  And, last, but most importantly, a staff of 7 make the organization run like a well-oiled machine. 

Our next goal is expansion of the NOCC inmate/shelter dog training program.  We now have two training organizations selecting dogs from our program.  One is in training for a young person with Asperger’s  and one has passed the high standard to be trained as a mobility dog (think open doors, close doors, pick up things on the floor). 

It’s an exciting time to be at PAAS

Kay Stout, Director

PAAS Vinita

[email protected]

918-256-7227

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When Pets Grieve

posted August 10th, 2017 by
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When Pets Grieve

By Cindy Webb

When Pets Grieve

Turns out, Isabelle wasn’t dying, but she was a mess. One veterinarian recommended immediate euthanasia. Unwilling to give up on the little cat, Kathryn took Isabelle to another veterinarian who found that most of Isabelle’s teeth were bad. After dental surgery and a few weeks on a gluten-free diet, Isabelle blossomed.

Scarlet, however, was not happy with the newcomer. Growling, spitting and even slapping were common occurrences over the next three years that the cats shared living space. Yet, when Isabelle suddenly and tragically passed away one night, Kathryn and her husband were shocked to discover that Scarlet seemed to share their grief.

“She seemed depressed and was clingy,” said Kathryn of the usually aloof cat. “She became very needy and wanted to cuddle all the time. We have lots of pictures of her from that time because it was so unusual.”

“It might surprise people that pets grieve just as we do,” said Lindsay Benson, M.S., LPC, and certified pet loss and bereavement therapist. “But there’s actually a lot of scientific evidence to support that fact. In the wild, and in the home, animal behaviorists see definite changes in behavior when there’s been a loss.”

According to Benson, people often don’t realize their pets are grieving because they are so caught up in their own grief.

“I’ve had many people come in after they’ve lost their pet and say, ‘My other dog is being so bad. He peed in the house, and he’s just being so annoying.’ I try to help them understand that the dog they lost, and the dog they still have, were best friends.”

Signs of Grief in a Pet

“Grieving animals might display anxious behaviors, much like a human would,” said Benson. “In humans, anxiety is a huge marker of grief. Another common indicator that an animal is grieving is pacing or going to the preferred spot of the animal that died,” said Benson. “It can be comparable to separation anxiety.”

Additional behaviors that are common in grieving animals include:

Loss of appetite: You may notice there is still food in the bowl after feeding them.

Lethargy: You might find them hiding under the bed, taking longer naps, or just not having the zest for life they once had.

Anxiety: You might find that they can’t sleep because they are searching, pacing, and whining. They might seem restless, checking the windows and doors.

Excessive clinginess: Following you from room to room, or wanting to be cuddled and petted.

Negative behaviors: chewing, digging, and housetraining accidents.

Supporting the Surviving Animals

“Your pet grieving the loss of another pet is normal. This is very important to understand,” said Benson. “You can’t stop it from happening, and it needs to happen. But you can do certain things to support them and make the transition easier for them. First,” she said, “you need to own it, and be aware that it is happening: ‘I’m grieving the loss of my pet and so are my other pets.’ Your next job is to support yourself and your pet through the journey of grief.”

Here are Benson’s suggestions for the journey:

Maintain a normal routine: Routine is the biggest indicator to the animal that everything is going to be OK.

Support them nutritionally: Loss of appetite is normal, but if it goes on for days, try putting some favorite treats in their bowl along with their food to entice them. But don’t get excessive with treats, because you don’t want to set a new standard of expectation from your animals.

Increase bonding time: This can be as simple as petting, grooming, or giving them a massage. Touch is calming for them and for you.

Increase exercise: You may want to add more walks and games for dogs or more play time for cats. Exercise can be especially helpful for animals that are anxious and searching. Greater activity tires them out and allows them to rest.

Set boundaries on negative behaviors: Be consistent in discipline. Even though you can acknowledge that their acting up behavior is probably a sign of grief, you can’t just let it go, as it can easily become the norm.

Benson does not recommend medication for the grieving pet but suggests that essential oil compounds “specifically blended for animals” might help calm them. Pheromone sprays can be helpful for cats. When a cat smells a pheromone from its own species, the endocrine system releases a calming chemical.

Remember that your pet’s grieving behaviors won’t last forever. “These behaviors typically last for a few days to a few weeks,” said Benson. “Animals’ recovery time from grief is definitely faster than for humans.”

Sharing in the Experience

According to Benson, there is evidence to support the idea of allowing the other pets in the home to be present for the euthanasia of a furry family member when possible.

“Researchers have found that around 80 percent of the time, the surviving pets will come over to the deceased animal and smell, nuzzle and investigate. They then seem to understand that their companion animal has died,” said Benson. She added that when the other pets are present for the passing, they show less anxious, searching behavior.

“They might search for a few hours, and then it subsides,” she said. “When they are not a part of the passing, it can be days and weeks that they continue that behavior.”

Benson suggests discussing home euthanasia with your veterinarian. Many veterinarians now offer that service. “You can also take your other animals with you to the vet if you don’t feel comfortable having it done in your home,” she said.

Our family opted for having our other pets present for the passing of our 14-year-old Springer Spaniel, Cubby. His hind legs had been failing him for almost a year, and the day came when he simply couldn’t get up. His pleading eyes told us all we needed to know. When our veterinarian arrived at our home, she encouraged us to have our other animals present for the euthanasia. Our surviving dog, Roxie, and cat, Agatha, watched motionless and tense throughout the procedure. Our vet said they would know when Cubby was gone by a change in his scent.

I was concerned that Roxie would have anxiety issues after Cubby’s passing, as she always did when separated from him. Yet, maybe because she was present when he died, she didn’t express the anxious checking and whining behaviors she showed when he went to the groomer or the vet.

Getting a New Pet

According to Benson, the first thing you need to do when you are tempted to get a new pet after a pet dies, is ask yourself: “Why?”

“If you think that it’s going to end your grief, or heal the hurt you are experiencing, that is not the right reason,” said Benson. “Grief is a natural journey after loss, and there is no escaping it. No cute, fluffy kitten or puppy is going to make it go away.”

She recommends that people wait at least 30 days before making any decisions about getting a new pet. “After the 30 days, you will be in a better mental state for making a decision,” said Benson.

Benson“Give yourself time, and make sure the reasons behind getting the new pet are appropriate. You don’t want to get a new pet to replace the lost animal or to stop yourself from grieving. What I find when people jump the gun, is they start feeling resentment toward the new pet because it isn’t just like the pet they lost,” said Benson. “The new pet never stood a chance.”

She said that postponing getting a new pet is also important for your surviving pets. “The grieving pet needs to process its grief before being introduced to another new pet,” said Benson.

“Bringing a new pet into the household is a big transition no matter what the circumstances. You may see an increase in acting out behaviors and accidents if you bring in a pet too soon. Everyone needs to be as emotionally stable as possible before getting a new pet.”

Be Patient with the Process

“While you want to support your pets through grief, there is no magic wand that will make it go away,” said Benson. “People want to hurry through grieving, but that is not realistic. You can’t do that for yourself; you can’t do it for your pet… But,” she added, “the more supportive and aware we are about our surviving pet’s grief, the more kindness we are probably showing to ourselves as we also grieve.”

Bark in the Park 2017

posted July 31st, 2017 by
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Bark in the Park

Bark in the Park

with the Drillers at OneOK Field

Bark in the ParkDog lovers in Tulsa know that the best Drillers games to attend are the much-loved Bark in the Park nights when baseball fans can bring their canine buddies along to enjoy America’s favorite pastime.

This year, Tulsa Pets Magazine readers have the chance to win tickets to the upcoming August 2nd Bark in the Park night as well as future Bark in the Park games through the rest of the season.

Register here to win tickets!

You need to hurry, they don’t last long!

Win tickets to Wednesday’s Bark in the Park

posted July 17th, 2017 by
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Bark in the Park

If you have not been to a Driller’s Bark in the Park game this season, don’t miss your chance to snag tickets. Later today, Tulsa Pets Magazine will give away a pair of tickets to Wednesday night’s game.

The perfect summer activity, the winners will be able to enjoy America’s favorite past time along with their pooch. The Tulsa Drillers will play Arkansas at 7:05 p.m.

As always, attending dogs should be up to date on vaccines and enter through the Oil Derrick or Arvest Brady Street entrance. Dogs are only permitted in the general admission lawn section or Budweiser Terrace.

Visit tulsapetsmagazine.com to win.

Remaining 2017 Bark in the Park nights at ONEOK Field

July 19 vs. Arkansas

Aug. 2 vs. Springfield

Aug. 16 vs. Corpus Christi

Aug. 30 vs. NW Arkansas

-Lauren Cavagnolo, [email protected]

Vampires Helping Cats in Tulsa

posted July 11th, 2017 by
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PC KC 3

Vampires Helping Cats in Tulsa, Ok.

PC KC 3bToday is the release of LOVED, the first book in the House of Night Otherworld series. This young-adult series is based in Tulsa and is about a group of vampyre friends protecting their beLoved city and the rest of the world from a dark and malevolent enemy. LOVED is the continuation of the House of Night series, which follows these vampy teens through a vampyre boarding school named House of Night.

P.C. and Kristin Cast, a mother/daughter writing team, and Tulsa residents at the time, penned these books, the first of which came out a decade ago.

What does this have to do with pets, you say? Well, a lot. Read on.

Each vampyre at the House of Night has an animal familiar, usually cats, but a sweet canine comes into play further into the stories. There is also a stable blessed with gentle horses where the students can learn to ride and care for them. One of the recurring locations in the House of Night series is a cat shelter called Street Cats, ran by the Benedictine Sisters. P.C. and Kristin modeled this fictional feline rescue after Tulsa’s real life StreetCats Inc. While it is not run by nuns, it is powered completely by volunteers and donations from cat-loving people like you and I. For more information, check out the StreetCats Inc.

Both authors love this particular pet paradise and gladly share the limelight with it. In fact, P.C. and Kristin are covering all StreetCat adoption fees for July 5th-12th to celebrate the release of LOVED and the House of Night’s 10-year anniversary.

I have been a fan of the House of Night series since the beginning and am so excited to see the characters return for more adventures. I contacted P.C and Kristin about the upcoming book and their relationship with StreetCats in Tulsa. Not only did I get to correspond with them through our electronic interview, they even sent me an ARC (advanced reader copy) of LOVED. I immediately made time to devour the book and was not disappointed. These young characters have grown up into powerful vampyres and the stakes are high as another attack on Tulsa threatens to destroy everything. It was a thrill to connect with some of my favorite authors, especially for my favorite magazine! Here is a sneak peek of our email palavers.

How was the House of Night born? How did you two decide to pen these novels?

PC: In 2005 I was at a writers’ conference with my agent, Meredith Bernstein, and she said that she would like me to consider writing a series set at a “vampyre finishing school.”  I was teaching then at South Intermediate High School in Broken Arrow (Go Tigers!), and I instantly thought about a high school setting.  Meredith was thinking more adult and sexy, especially as I already had several adult paranormal romances already published, but I was insistent.  She gave me the green light to write a proposal and the first three chapters, and they totally won her, and St. Martin’s Press, over!

Do you write together? Tell me about your writing process.

PC: For the House of Night, Kristin is my teen voice, front lined editor.  I do all the writing.  She brainstorms with me, helps me outline, and is my first editor.  We do actually co-write books, though.  THE SCENT OF SALT AND SAND is a novella we co-authored that is set in Kristin’s world of her series, THE ESCAPED.  Right now, we are hard at work co-authoring a brand-new YA paranormal series called THE DYSASTERS, which will begin releasing spring 2018.  When we write together we each choose and create characters, and then take turns writing chapters.  Whose turn to write depends on whose character is the main focus of that particular chapter.

Introduce me to your pets.

PC: I have a personal protection Eastern European German Shepherd named Badger who is a fantastic warrior and working dog.  Three Scotties: Cameron, Captain Kirk, and The Mighty Khan.  A Maine Coon named Xena Warrior Princess Cast, and two quarter horse mares, Anjo and The Black.

KC: I have two alien baby French bulldogs, Grace Kelly and Sir Laurence Olivier, and a squishy, giant mastiff puppy named Baloo (like from The Jungle Book)!

Which animals are your supervisors during writing?

PC: Oh, mine “help” every night!  I write late, late at night, surrounded by three Scottie dogs, my German Shepherd, and my Maine Coon. Sometimes I worry about what I’m writing, though, because I always seem to put them to sleep…

KC: Gracie loves to “help” me. There’s a bed for her right next to my desk where she curls up into a little furry ball and snores away. Sometimes the big one (Baloo) will come in, but it’s really just to get Gracie to play with him. Once they get started, I have to kick them out. Mastiff/Frenchie play time is sooooo loud. Sir Laurence is very anti-social and prefers to stay in his house on his heating pad. He has the right idea. If I didn’t have any responsibilities, I’d stay in my room on a heating pad too.

What, to you, is the message of House of Night?

PC: There are several messages in HoN.  One of the most important is that it is not our mistakes that define us, but how we recover from them and then learn and grow.  We also make very clear points about the importance of empathizing with those who are different – and that being different is not synonymous with being bad or sinful or evil.  And, of course, we continue to fight racism, misogyny, and homophobia with every book.

P.C. and Kristin will be at Books a Million at 7404 S Olympia Ave in Tulsa TODAY at 7pm for a meet and greet and to sign copies of LOVED. You can read more about this dynamic duo in the July/August issue of Tulsa Pets Magazine. Check it out!

P.C. Cast link https://www.pccastauthor.com/

Kristin Cast link https://www.kcastauthor.com/home

House of Night link https://www.houseofnightseries.com/

StreetCats Inc. link http://www.streetcatstulsa.org/

PetZone returns to Blue Dome for 2nd year

posted May 16th, 2017 by
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image_PetZoneRegistrationImage

PetZone returns to Blue Dome for 2nd year

The Blue Dome Arts Festival welcomes back the PetZone for its second year.

Presented by Dr. Chet Thomas of City Veterinary Hospital of Tulsa, the PetZone provides a fun space geared toward dogs during the annual festival.

The backyard space will include sod, shade, water, a picket fence and will feature local pet businesses and organizations.

Tulsa SPCA and Oklahoma Alliance for Animals will host pet adoptions. OAA will also be offering microchipping. PetsWell Pantry, Tulsa’s only food truck for pets, will have plenty of treats on hand and Dr. Thomas will host Q&A sessions and offer nail grindings.

Other PetZone participants this year include:

KC Landscape Design

Bouse Fur House

Innergistic

Companions Forever Pet Memorial

GracieLand Hound Dog Hotel

Rebecca Blacksher Art

Jessica Doll Art

Dogs Poop We Scoop – DPWS

All pets must be registered and check in upon arrival. At check in, each pet will receive a treat and Blue Dome bandana which will show they have checked in.

Owners are asked to clean up after their pet and assume full responsibility for actions of their furry friends.

For more information, visit the event page on Facebook.

-Lauren Cavagnolo, [email protected]