Category Archives: advocacy

Rescue Dogs Take Over ABC’s The View

On the August 3rd, 2017 episode of The View, rescue dogs from the BARC Shelter in Brooklyn were the stars, along regular co-hosts Whoopi Goldberg, Sunny Hostin, Joy Behar, Sarah Haines, and Jedediah Bilah.

Bill Smith of BARC introduced several adoptable pups of an assorted mix of breeds that would be suitable for all kinds of families.

Bill Smith from BARC Shelter in Brooklyn holding Athena a Doberman-mix on ABC's The View

Bill Smith from BARC Shelter in Brooklyn holding Athena a Doberman-mix on ABC’s The View

BARC’s mission is “to provide a safe haven for abandoned animals and to find permanent loving homes for them. While in our care, we provide them with quality food, shelter, medical attention, and the love they deserve.”

Check out the website for The View to see all of the dogs featured on the episode.

Bill Smith from BARC Shelter showing Whoopie Goldberg an adoptable dog; Teenie.

Bill Smith from BARC Shelter showing Whoopie Goldberg an adoptable dog; Teenie.

The View has long been an advocate for rescue dogs. They feature an annual episode “Mutt Show” also featuring dogs available for adoption from shelters across the U.S.

Jill Rappaport with Nicolle Wallace and Mario Cantone on The View's "Best In Shelter" episode

Jill Rappaport with Nicolle Wallace and Mario Cantone on The View’s “Best In Shelter” episode

Jill Rappaport, a long-time animal activist, has made several appearances on the show. She highlights dogs and is an advocate for adption; hosting her own NBC Special “Best In Shelter“.

 

Can Pet Food Bags Be Recycled

Are pet food bags recyclable?

As Dexter finished the last portion of another bag of dog food, I wondered if these bags could be recycled? Grocery stores have receptacles for previously used, but clean, grocery bags, and our county runs curbside blue bin collection, but neither of these places takes pet food bags. That got me curious, what are pet food bags made from? According to the Purina How To Recycle website, the ProPlan bags that contain Dexter’s food are made from woven #5 polypropylene plastic.

Reading further into the site, there are a number of other types of packaging used to manufacture pet food bags; non-woven plastic (“#7 mixed materials”), lined paper (the ones with a thin coating of plastic on the inside), and unlined paper (similar to a paper lunch bag).

Purina Recycling Chart

Purina Recycling Chart

 

Sadly, the lined paper bags must go to trash because they cannot be broken down in to their source components easily. Clean, unlined pet food bags can go into your curbside blue bin with newspapers and other paper. The most rare types of plastic accepted in curbside programs are non-rigid #5 and #7 plastics.

Surely something can be done about all the waste created from these empty bags!

There are a few resources online which give step-by-step instructions for creating stylish tote bags, and purses, but one can only use so many totes and purses. Perhaps you could consider starting an Etsy store to sell them. For those of us who are less crafty, what alternatives do we have?

Etsy Handmade Tote

Etsy Handmade Tote

Indestructables Pet Food Tote Instructions

Indestructables Pet Food Tote Instructions

Wellness Pet Food has partnered with TerraCycle to offer a free-to-consumer recycling program where you can bundle empty bags and TerraCycle will shred and melt the plastic which can be reformed into new products. That is the ultimate goal I am trying to achieve; put my plastic back into the cycle and prevent the need to use raw materials. Kudos to Wellness Pet Food, but they won’t accept my Purina bags. So whats next?

Doing more research into #5 woven polypropylene (PP), I found that large shipping bags (FIBC – Flexible Intermediate Bulk Containers) are made from the same material. There are just a handful of  FIBC recycling companies across the United States, and they don’t typically accept small shipments of a small number of items – they cater mainly to food processors, farms, and shipping companies who process hundreds at a time.

The process of recycling FIBC bags mirrors that of TerraCycle; bags are shredded, melted down and reformed into chips or pellets that can be reused into new plastic products.

Typically, these pellets are used to create beautiful outdoor furniture for consumers or use in public parks.

Poly-Wood Outdoor Furniture

Poly-Wood Outdoor Furniture

So where does that leave me? Literally holding the bag. Maybe I can mail it to an Etsy crafter, or use it in place of a tarp to protect the trunk of my vehicle, but since my curbside program doesn’t accept it, and I wasn’t able to find a place online; it seems that while they are “recyclable” in principal, they aren’t recyclable in reality.

Please let me know in the comments if you have found a way to recycle these.

 

Interestingly enough, during my research I found this company called Preserve that will take rigid plastic #5 containers, such as those for yogurt, hummus, and margarine spreads and turn them into toothbrush handles, and lunchbags.

 

Summer Heat Brings Reminder To Not Leave Dogs In Vehicles

Each year as the weather gets nicer and more people are taking their dogs with them on errands, we are reminded that did should not be left in vehicles as they can easily overheat and suffer physically and sometimes fatally.

Vehicles can reach dangerous interior temperatures even after a very short period of time.

Clearly, it is never they intent of a dog owner to injure it kill their pet, but accidents do happen. Several grocery chains, including Wegmans, post signs reminding customers to leave their dogs at home.

According to the American Humane Association, even with an outside temperature of 70-degrees, the inside of a vehicle can climb to 90-degrees in just ten minutes!

Prevention is the first step. Please leave your dog at home if it will be dangerous to leave them in your car if you are going somewhere dogs are not welcome.

Awareness is key to getting the message out. Share an infographic on your social media, order a brochure to share with friends or family. 

Action may be needed if you encounter an animal in a dangerous situation. Remember, not all areas have protections in place for people forcefully removing an animal from danger. The Humane Society Of The United States has this guideline: Get the identifying information for the vehicle and have the owner paged, call the local non-emergency police number and wait for them to arrive. 

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Main Graphic from ASPCA.

ASPCA Hot Vehicle Infographic

American worker holding flag

Pet Products Made In The USA

According to the website American Made Matters these are the Top Ten Reasons to Buy American. These apply not only to goods for people, but also for our pets.

  1. Promotes American Independence
  2. Provide Jobs for Future Generations
  3. Better For the Environment
  4. Our Government Cannot Control Foreign Labor Standards
  5. Boosts American Investment Opportunities
  6. Guaranteed Quality of Goods
  7. Guaranteed Safer and Fair Working Conditions
  8. Helps Reduce the Deficit
  9. Avoid Foreign Political Debates
  10. Outsourced Manufacturing Plants Rarely Return to the US

According to an NDP Group report cited by Pet Business Magazine, 80% of shoppers said that a “Made in the USA” claim is important to them to some degree, and 44 percent said it is extremely or very important.

To me this comes as no surprise, as I believe we all agree that the points above convince us that products made here are of better quality and help drive our economy. How that translates into sales is another issue, as imported products tend to cost less.

Next time you are in the pet store, or if you are searching online for a product, consider the full value of the purchase you are making. Below is a list of “Made In The USA” products featured in Pet Business magazine. Links go directly to the suppliers pages.

 

Angel Eyes Natural Tear Stain Powder

Angel Eyes is developed specifically for dogs and cats. 100% wheat corn, soy & dye free. Recommended for both shedding and non-shedding breeds. 100# of Angel Eyes ingredients are products of the USA.

Circle T by Coastal

Circle T Rustic Leather collars and leashes are a vintage, classic design that features antique brass metal hardware. Rustic collars are available in brick red, chocolate, and slate grey. The round collars are perfect for dogs with long hair or sensitive skin.

Collar Guard by Sandy’s Sleeve

17 million dogs suffer from contact allergens. Irritants like plastic, metal, leather, nylon, rubber. Treatment is as easy as slipping collar guard over your existing collar. Committed to safety and protection.

Emerald Pet Products

Fresh Smileezz Grain Free Dog Dental Chews freshen breath from the inside out with all natural mint, dill, and parsley. For minty fresh breath you can really smell. Made in the USA.

Frenchie’s Kitchen

Human Grade, gently cooked, frozen food for dogs. 100% Human grade ingredients, 100% whole food ingredients, 100% USA sourced ingredients. If dogs could cook, this is what they’d serve.

Buddy Valastro Pets: Dog Treats

Hugs Pet Products is proud to announce our new line of Buddy Valastro Dog Treats inspired by his signature bakery items. No corn, no soy, all natural ingredients, slowly baked to perfection.

Dogs Leave Paw Prints On Our Hearts

This paw-shaped garden stone is a unique gift for any dog lover. Handmade in the USA and guaranteed to last a lifetime.

Reflective Rope Leads

Featuring premium 3/8″ polyester rope with a reflective tracer, sewen leather joins, brass hardware. Folds easily for carrying & storage. 4 & 6 ft. lengths in five colors. Made in USA.

Pet ‘n Shape Ham Bone

A Pet ‘n Shape classic and ideal holiday reward for pets, our ham bones are proudly made and sourced in the USA from free-range, grass-fed beef and contain no artificial additives, colors, or preservatives.

Petmate Vari Kennel

Petmate Vari Kennel is ideal for dogs at home or on the go. Tough, durable construction with specially designed features for pet’s comfort and security. Easy-to-assemble. Wide variety of sizes.

Indus Dog Diner

Beautifully constructed hardwood diner with a modern, brushed stainless steel top. Available in two sizes and two stunning finishes – natural or walnut.

PetzLife Dental, Flea & Tick, Calming, and more

PetzLife is an animal wellness company dedicated to creating innovative, all-natural products that improve pets’ lives. All PetzLife products are human grade, and every ingredient is sourced from reputable suppliers and made in the United States.

Poochie Bowl; Ultimate Travel Dog Bowl

The Poochie Bowl enhances traveling with your dog, by eliminating the mess. You no longer need to carry additional food or water, and is 100% made in the USA.

Preppy Puppy Treats

Preppy Puppy offers over 150 different types of gourmet treats including soft filled pastries, every-day treats & birthday. Wheat, corn & soy free. Made with all human grade ingredients.

Redbarn Pet Products

Redbarn Naturals Bully Slices Dog Chews are trimmed pieces of rawhide, coated to help tempt picky eaters. Our new Vanilla flavor contains functional ingredients to support dogs’ joint health.

Sandia Pet Products

Sandia Pet Products, a U.S. manufacturer of collars, leashes, and harnesses for dogs, cats and ferrets, offers superior quality, stunning designs, great variety, fast shipping, and affordable pricing.

USA Ground Rawhide Treats

New Ground Rounds are beef-hide treats made and sourced in the USA. They’re grain-free and blended with morsels of vegetables, fruits, and more. 4-packs, 8-packs, and 2-lb. jars available.

Dog Toys With Give Back

WO Design dog toys are made in the USA, durable, floatable, interactive, BPA-free, and recyclable. Each unit sold provides 2 meals for orphaned children and widows around the world.

Tropiclean 

Tropiclean pet products are made in the USA of natural ingredients. Their packaging includes biodegradable elements and shampoos are soap-free.
Fresh Wave Pet Shampoo made in the USA natural​ ingredients

Fresh Wave

Pet shampoo, and room deodorizers. Made in the USA from natural ingredients.

Image courtesy of vectorolie at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Steyr and Stryker with their veteran handlers Kelvin and Shawn while filming the Top Tier: American Heroes and the Dogs Who Love Them documentary

Top Tier: American Heroes and the Dogs Who Love Them

Browsing Kickstarter today, I found this project and immediately backed it. The filmmakers from Titan Throw Multimedia are teaming up with Top Tier Dog Training and the non-profit foundation Tier Garden Inc. to produce a film called: Top Tier American Heroes and the Dogs Who Love Them.

This movie will follow the dogs and their handlers through their Affiliative Training (PDF) program. Affiliative Dog Training focuses on building the bond between the disabled handler and the Service Dog in Training using positive reinforcement. Along the way, we will learn about the veterans who will benefit from the pairing with the dogs.

The preview, you can watch though the link here, shows veterans going through a wide range of issues including mobility, and those with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

It is a wonderful project which I hope is produced and widely distributed which will help provide support to the thousands of veterans who served our country.

Proposed release date is June 29, 2017 if funding is reached.

Heading Image Credit: Steyr and Stryker with their handlers Kelvin and Shawn from https://www.kickstarter.com

 

rescue dog in the spotlight

National Popcorn Day

What goes with popcorn like butter and a movie? To recognize #NationalPopcornDay, let’s look back a this post from last year: Rescue Dogs Take The Starring Role that spotlights rescue dogs in the movies and on TV.

This year was another dog-filled movie year with films like Max, and the upcoming A Dog’s Purpose. Not live-action, but The Secret Life Of Pets gave us a look at what happens when the people aren’t home.

Grab a bucket of popcorn and your remote, and get settled in for great stories with our canine friends.

orange and yellow rubber duck sitting on rocks celebration national rubber duck day

National Rubber Ducky Day

Today is #NationalRubberDuckyDay and what better way to celebrate than with dogs and duckies!

I wonder when #DressYourDogLikeADuckDay is!

Stop by the National Day Calendar to see what “day” it is tomorrow!
Sincerely, Paula