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Pet Information - Cats, Dogs, Area Rescues, Veterinarians, and Travelling

03-05-2011 - Pet-Friendly Motels on the Baja Penninsula, Mexico:

GOOD READING IF YOU HAVE A DOG - raisins, grapes, walnuts, and macadamia nuts are toxic to dogs and are especially dangerous for smaller dogs. Be safe! Please avoid giving them to your pet! - FRANK

3-29 MONEY FOR THE ANIMALS - The community generously supports several fundraisers each year in support of animal welfare. Here's a rundown of how that money is spent: Money raised at the Fur Ball is spent on the humane reduction of animal overpopulation through spaying (sterilizing females) and neutering (sterilizing males) cats and dogs. One large expenditure is for the one or more annual clinics staffed by volunteer veterinarians from this region and/or from the States. While the veterinary services are donated, ancillary costs for anesthesia, antibiotics, a host of medical supplies, ground transportation and meals for the vets come to between $8 and $12 USD per animal. Additionally, funds are used throughout the year to pay for surgeries for ownerless animals, and to defray the costs for pet owners who cannot afford the full price of the surgery. Every week Dr. Rafael Franzoni in Todos Santos and Dr. Gabriel Hernandez at El Refugio perform surgeries and receive payment from the Fur Ball fund. Ordinarily the fund runs out in about August, and the fund manager, Angelique Schornstein, must either stop paying for surgeries or ask for credit from the local vets until more money is raised. The extraordinary response to the Fur Ball's art auction in the last two years has eliminated that worry. It has also provided funds to expand services. In the works are an ongoing ad campaign to educate the public on the importance of spaying and neutering, and a mobile program to reach outlying areas where veterinary services are not available. The natural result of overpopulation is animal abandonment and neglect. This is where Mariposa comes in. She has donated her ranch land and her time to create El Refugio, a shelter and adoption facility. Funds raised at the annual Garden and Home Tour, spearheaded by Maryann Douglas and her steering committee, go directly to Mariposa with the request that the funds be used for animal food. Mariposa reports that these funds last seven or eight months. If her funds become precariously low, Angelique occasionally makes donations to El Refugio from the Fur Ball fund. The mix of dogs with cats at El Refugio became difficult to manage. In response, Angelique built a cat refuge (Kitty Heaven) on her own property. She is able to house about 20 cats there while they are nursed to health, receive their surgeries, and made ready for adoption. Traditionally the tianguis held annually at Maya Roca had contributed to the spay and neuter funds. With the recent successes of the Fur Ball, funds from this past year's tianguis went to defray capital and operating costs for Kitty Heaven. Again, many thanks to all the people who make the fundraising events possible, and to all of the people who support the cause by attending them. Hopefully, the results are evident to anyone who has lived here more than a few years. - Janet Howey

July 4th - A Scary Time For Pets - With the upcoming Fourth of July festivities in the US, it's a good time to remind everyone that this can be an especially scary time for your animal companions due to all the noise. It's also one of the busiest times of the year for the animal shelters because of all the runaway pets. Here is some advice from the US Humane Society on how to Keep Your Pets Safe on July 4th Also, you can make your own "Pet Safe" and Sane fireworks online HERE ( Happy 4th of July, Everyone! - Alan Thompson

TICK VIRUS - I have a neighbor who is back in the US but her dog became very sick while in Mexico. The vet thinks it might be a virus. Does anyone remember the name of the virus caused by ticks? Any information on how to treat this would be helpful. Thank you - Susan Murray, susanleigh55 ( -a t- ) 612 111 6195

Editor's note: a common illness here caused by ticks is Ehrliciosis. The vets here and in the U.S. can test for this disease and it is treatable with great success if caught soon enough. The treatment is a simple, three-week series of oral doxycycline, a broad-spectrum antibiotic. Some feel it is a good idea for those of us living here with our dogs to have them tested occasionally. The test, referred to as the "SNAP" test, is very quick and includes testing for heartworm disease as well.

CANINE DISTEMPER - THERE IS AN OUTBREAK OF DISTEMPER (MOQUILLO IN SPANISH) IN LAPAZ. THIS IS A VERY INFECTIOUS AND , NEARLY ALWAYS, FATAL DISEASE. SHOTS ARE AVAILABLE FOR PUPPIES AND ADULTS. THE FOLLOWING IS COPIED FROM A WEBSITE: Contact with contaminated urine or feces can cause infection, but it is an airborne virus and contact with an infected animal is not needed for infection to occur. A dog can become infected if another animal within a 20 mile radius has the disease. Puppies and younger dogs are the most common victims of this disease but older dogs are also susceptible. Distemper is not transmissible to humans. Symptoms of distemper can mimic a cold at first. Fever and eye discharge are common symptoms and are often mistaken as symptoms of milder illnesses. Dogs may show very subtle symptoms for as long as a few weeks. The disease gradually worsens and symptoms can include vomiting, diarrhea, coughing and weight loss. These are not the only symptoms. Symptoms of distemper can be so various that it's important to get any sick dog veterinary attention immediately. In later stages, the disease affects the central nervous system, causing convulsions and possibly paralysis - FRANK, zorba1360 ( -a t- ),

For dog lovers, save a life and find your new best friend here - EL REFUGIO ANIMAL SANCTUARY, Pescadero, or

For cat lovers, same deal, same websites or

different location - KITTY HEAVEN, Todos Santos. Contact angelique ( -a t- )

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