Wednesday, July 30, 2014


Last week's papers carried an item about a Bronx man who kicked, beat and torched a stray male cat. According to different eyewitness accounts, a man approached a stray cat who may or may not have scratched or bit him. The man then kicked the cat beating it until it was bloody then placed him on a blanket. After dousing the cat with lighter fluid the man set the edges of the blanket on fire. The cat was burned alive.

This new incident occurred only weeks after a Brooklyn man was arrested after approaching a friendly stray male cat, kicking it 20 feet into the air. The incident was caught on video and it went viral. The posting helped lead the police to the attacker. This incident had a good ending. A group effort was mounted by rescuers, the cat was located, medically checked and ultimately adopted by someone living in Manhattan.

The video was sickening to watch. The cat was called to the kicker who then pretends to have food. Suddenly, he viciously kicks King with all his might sending the poor cat flying through the air like a football.
All the while the kicker and others off-camera are laughing hysterically.

Why do such incidents keep happening? I believe we need stiffer penalties for crimes of this nature. Animals are alive, people! Just because they can't talk doesn't make their life inferior to ours. They experience pain and they can be defenseless against much bigger humans. It is particularly cruel to win an animal's trust then injure, torture or kill it.

New York needs to upgrade the status of animals to sentient beings as France did and rewrite our laws for crimes accordingly. Penalties for those harming or killing animals should be stiffer than laws for damaging property.

King enjoying life at the ASPCA prior to adoption.  (courtesy ASPCA)

Monday, July 28, 2014


Sunday morning, a good time to kick back and relax with the newspaper and a cup of coffee exactly what I did yesterday. Our neighborhood was quiet; Orphée kept watch by the window for our feral colony members while Annie lounged on the recliner. Plenty went on this past week - some good, some bad but such is life.

I did feel good about one item I came across, a bill proposed by Chuck Schumer requiring veterinarians to write prescriptions for pets. The article confirmed what I already know to be true - pet medication costs are all over the page depending on where you purchase them. Senator Schumer found markups at the vet as high as 240%. A veterinarian worth their salt will discuss options with you or at the very least write a prescription if you ask. The prescription can be filled online or at a local pharmacy.

Dr. Young did that for us when Buddy needed sub-q fluids. We aren't in walking distance from her office making it time consuming to pick up refills. The prescriptions for the fluid, IV lines and needles gave us the option of ordering online or from our local pharmacy. We opted for the local pharmacy for the convenience (one block from home), price and turnaround time (anywhere from immediately to 24 hours).

There have been times our budget was hit hard by unexpected medical expenses for our pets. Artie and I would gladly find something to give up (dinner or an evening out) to offset the extra expenditure. Our furry family members are the world to us. Most people with pets would do the same however medical emergencies are a much harder call for lower income people, the sick and the elderly who's pets are sometimes the only family or joy they have in life.

I'm interested to see if this proposal becomes law thus helping families to care for their pets instead of making the agonizing choice between medical care and the associated costs.

I love sleeping in Sunday mornings.

Saturday, July 26, 2014


This past week was an unusual one filled with doctor visits and tests for me. I'm fine, my test results are fine (so far). When I realized no new posts were done since I blogged about Broadway Barks and posted pictures of Porch Guy, I knew I had to stop being so neglectful and come up with some new posts. I vowed to do so as soon as Annie and I went for our daily walk.

Excitement was in the air when Annie realized it was time for a late afternoon walk. We were outside only ten minutes when the cloudy day turned into a rainy day forcing us to cut our walk short and head for home. Both of us were drenched! Annie hates rain; she doesn't mind her bath but getting caught in rainy weather is another story altogether.

Lately both Artie and I have noticed some new cats and two kittens showing up for food. We don't know how many ferals we are currently feeding but there is a definite increase. Artie managed to get pictures of both kittens. We don't know their gender but they definitely are cute kitties!

Dinner time.

Smile for the camera!

Time for my closeup.

A great closeup of this adorable grey kitty.

Our only photo of the second kitty.

Monday, July 21, 2014


Porch Guy is still a regular visitor for a meal; in fact he's more like a family member showing up three or four times a day to check out the food bowls, have water and lounge around.

He's a bit thin but he looks good. Never one to run away when we're out front, Porch Guy will eat while I water my plants, put out food, fill the drinking bowls or sweep the porch and steps. Artie finds it amusing when Porch Guy appears out of nowhere when Artie comes home. He's a very smart cat indeed equating us with food. I tell Artie "He's no dope, he knows what side his bread is buttered on". Actually Porch Guy knows what side his food bowl is filled on. Artie took a few pictures of Porch Guy hanging out.

Friday, July 18, 2014


Because of the need to multi-task an endless to-do list, the 8 Paws and 2 Tails blog was relegated to the bottom of said list. I did not forget the promised post about this year's Broadway Barks event. You know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men? They often go awry. So did my day trip to Broadway Barks.

My friend Phyllis decided to join me this year; we planned to meet early for lunch then walk over to Schubert Alley.  My brother Artie wasn't sure if he wanted to attend after working all day. A Saturday morning decision to attend changed my plans. We would both be in Manhattan for a good part of the day leaving Annie alone for the entire time which we did not want to do.

I called Phyllis; skipping lunch was agreed upon with the three of us going off to dinner instead. Phyllis met me at the start of the event. We walked through Schubert Alley then along 45th Street looking at the dogs and trying to find the cats.

It seemed there were far less cats this year than in years' past. We couldn't find City Critters. Finally we ran into Terri (almost literally) as she walked past us. After a quick hello, Terri hastily explained she needed to find the location for City Critters and off she went. Schubert Alley was divided by the stage for the auction with tables set up on both sides. 

We finished our walk-around with a return trip through Schubert Alley to stop by the tables we missed when I saw Bernadette Peters walking ahead of us. She was stopping at the tables petting the dogs and chatting with the volunteers. Trailing behind her was a group of reporters, videographers and photographers. She stooped down to cuddle a dog giving me a great photo op. I thought "This is it! Finally, I'll get  a great picture." Boy was I wrong! It was hard to squeeze between the media legs but I managed to get a perfect composition. I snapped the camera has a delay; Bernadette Peters turned resulting in an absolutely beautiful picture of the back of her head. Anyone familiar with Bernadette knows he has a beautiful head of curly red hair making her very recognizable from the back. But that wasn't what I wanted; I wanted a close-up. Just as I snapped again someone tapped me on the shoulder. I heard a voice say "Move back lady, you're not supposed to be here." I turned around to see a cop looking at me. This is New York and you don't mouth off to a cop under any circumstances. We were in an open area after all, no barricades between Bernadette and us, no security only the lone cop standing in the middle of the crowd. That was the end of my picture taking. There was no way to get a decent photo of her from the place designated for non-media.

My almost perfect picture of Bernadette Peters.

Schubert Alley was crowded by the time we did our first walk through. The weather was better than expected but still left much to be desired. It was too much for Phyllis and I prompting us to look for someplace indoors to sit and catch up until my brother arrived. We found a quiet area in the Marriott Marquis to while away the time.

The auction started before Artie arrived. The area was packed with attendees; I couldn't get close enough to get a decent photo. The three of us walked along 45th Street finally connecting with Terri. We visited, made our donations then left because of the crush of people. Junior's, our choice for dinner, had too long a wait for a table so we went in search of another place to eat. Several stops later, we hadn't found an air-conditioned restaurant so we proceeded to 42nd Street and Dallas BBQ. We ended our day with great BBQ.

I need to rethink attending future Broadway Barks events. If I attend next year, it might be best to arrive at the beginning, walk through, take photos, meet Terri then leave instead of hanging around for the celebrities or the auction. I have a whole year to think about it...

Saturday, July 12, 2014


Today is Broadway Barks 2014. Of course, I'm in the process of getting ready to attend. Here's hoping I get some great photos and plenty of information to pass along about pet adoptions, rescue and anything else of interest in the pet community.

Friday, July 11, 2014


Annie had two follow-up doctor appointments this week with her Ophthalmologist and Oncologist. I was hoping for a clean bill of health from the eye exam but her eye is a bit red prompting the doctor to increase her eye drop to twice a day. Her eye is healthy otherwise; all her tests were in the normal range. We are thankful for that but I'm disappointed her recovery is so slow. Her next visit will be in three months instead of the six I was hoping for.

Her physical exam with the Oncologist went well however the doctor wasn't able to get online access to Annie's x-rays and sonogram taken at the time of her dental surgery. We waited awhile but eventually had to leave with the doctor promising to follow-up by phone once she reviewed all the material. That was two days ago but still no update. 

I'll check back with the Oncologist next week if I don't hear from her before. In the meantime, I'm hoping we will be wrapping up the frequent visits since December is the two-year mark for Annie's cancer surgery. A discussion with the doctor is in order - I believe after all this time we can move to a bi-annual or annual visit with additional visits scheduled whenever something unusual comes up.

Thursday, July 3, 2014


Tomorrow is the Fourth of July, Independence Day, a day to celebrate the birth of our nation and that means hot dog eating contests, barbecues laden with all manner of food and drink, desserts galore, family, friends and fireworks.

And it's also time to focus on the family pets. We're fortunate - our furry family members aren't fazed by the noise of the Fourth. Annie doesn't blink an eye at the sound of fireworks and Orphée couldn't care less but for the animal, who finds it hard to cope before turning to tranquilizers, try keeping them indoors in a room with closed windows and doors. If the weather is hot put on the AC. This will minimize the noise. If this doesn't do the trick, a thunder shirt might be the solution. I've never used one but my cousin has one for her dog who was afraid of storms and it worked quite well. The feel of the shirt around the animal is comforting to them.

If your pet's reaction is extreme and nothing helps then a visit to the Veterinarian is in order and medication might need to be prescribed. NEVER SELF-MEDICATE!!! Visit the doctor to determine how best to help your pet.

All the other safeguards used for any holiday apply here: keep your pet in a quiet place away from guests, no human food or drink, decorations and candles should be placed where pets can't ingest them or knock them over.

If you follow these commonsense rules everyone will have a happy fun-filled Fourth.


  (Image courtesy of Webweaver)

Tuesday, July 1, 2014


The heat and humidity have arrived in New York. Yesterday and today have been challenging to say the least. Annie begged for two walks today. I complied against my better judgement. Sometimes her persistence is too much to put up with.

Off we went for our walk, water in hand, Annie thinking she won, I knowing differently. You might not agree but I managed a win-win in this situation by changing our route to keep us in the shade as much as possible. I also cut both walks short based on how Annie was tolerating the heat. I did stop a few times to give her a bit of water and to pat water on her head. Both walks were earlier in the day than our usual walks.

Annie is happy but not completely satisfied - she's already asked to be let out back and for extra cookies. This behavior is typical for her during the summer. I have to cut this post short - Annie is here poking my leg, crying and whining - I'll get no peace until I let her show me what she wants.