‘Neediest Pets’ campaign begins, with hopes for homes

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Nov 24, 2013 in Rat News | Subscribe

Past time to get out from behind those bars!  Since 1912, the New York Times has run a holiday season campaign to raise money for what it calls the “Neediest” cases – people who need financial help to deal with serious health, family and housing problems. Right now, seven social welfare agencies in the NY area are the recipients of the money donated as a result of the Times’ publicity about the cases; these agencies in turn work with the people in need.

In an homage to the Times’ campaign, this variation on it: the Neediest Pet campaign, through which we aim to raise awareness, not money. We’ll publicize in this blog the images and stories of pets who are now in animal shelters, with rescue groups or in foster care, hoping to win them the attention they deserve, including loving forever homes.

If you head a rescue group or shelter, or if you’re a foster pet parent, here’s how to help the pet you think is the “neediest” (just one per organization or facility, please):

Via a comment at the end of this post (really easier to do than it looks at first, especially if you already have a Facebook or Google account), or by phoning me at 609-462-9191 (between noon – 7 pm by Friday, Dec. 6) tell me the following:

1 — the name of your shelter, rescue group or the group for which you’re fostering

2 – your name and contact info (email and/or phone number).

With that to go on, I’ll reach out to you for the specifics needed before I can feature the pet. (These will include a good [JPG-only] image of the pet and the pet’s story in brief, as well as other key info.)

“Take me home!” Please share the word about this “Neediest Pet” campaign with those you know from other organizations than yours.

Will rats become IN pets?

Rats. As pets. It’s a growing trend, and why not? Rats can be domesticated and trained, I’ve recently read. They can be curious, energetic and playful. Fastidious about cleaning themselves and their pals, some rats have learned to use a litter box.

Till very recently, the thought of rats was quickly followed by images of dumpsters, sewers and restaurant filth. But now, according to “Inside the Rat Pack: Discovering the Charms of an Underrated Species,” pet rats, the domesticated version of Rattus norvegicus, are catching on.

Appearing in the November/December issue of AllAnimals, an HSUS magazine, the article brought me up to speed on rats as pets. It features a Pennsylvania high school student who bought two rats from a pet store and over five months trained them to perform in her video, “15 Incredible Rat Tricks,” on YouTube.

Crush the ivory, end the industry?

Earlier this month, the US Fish and Wildlife Service crushed six tons of illegal ivory (read: tusks of slaughtered elephants) in Colorado, hoping to send a message to poachers and traffickers. “We’re doing this to send a signal to the world that we need to crush the illegal trade in ivory and wildlife products in general,” said the Service director. After China, the US was reported to be the world’s second largest market for ivory.



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