Monthly Archives: March 2015

Cruel Gas Chamber Deaths for Shelter Pets Should be Abolished in Michigan

We all realize that a time comes when every animal must die, just like each of us. Lost, homeless and abused animals in our shelters are routinely euthanized; this is a reality in our state and across the nation. But the use of carbon monoxide – in gas chambers – is cruel, barbaric and completely unnecessary. Indeed, in Cass, Van Buren, Branch and Berrien counties, dogs and cats that die in shelters suffer slow, painful and traumatic death in small hot boxes, usually with other panic-stricken animals. This inhumane practice needs to end immediately. In 1996, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that execution by poison gas constitutes cruel and unusual punishment. Death by gas chamber is no less cruel for an animal, and 22 states have made it illegal to kill dogs and cats in gas chambers. Even Texas, with disproportionate rates of human execution, passed a law in 2013 making it illegal to gas dogs and cats. The term “euthanasia” does not apply to gas chambers. Euthanasia, by definition, means “good death.” Death without pain or fear. Certainly not what happens in a gas chamber. Click here for the rest of the story.


State Disciplines TV Vet, Dr. Pol, for Negligence

The state board that regulates Michigan veterinarians voted Thursday afternoon to discipline Dr. Jan Pol. Pol, 72, is well-known as the star of his own reality TV show called “The Incredible Dr. Pol” show, which airs on National Geographic Wild on cable, documents the care Pol gives to animals in Weidman, Mich., a small town northwest of Mount Pleasant in Isabella County. Click here for the rest of the story.

Online Registry for Animal Abusers Heads Back to House

Proponents hope an animal abuse bill three years in the making could become law this year. Rep. Paul Muxlow, R-Brown City, and other legislators reintroduced a group of bills Tuesday that would bar convicted animal abusers from getting another pet for five years and require animal shelters to check potential adopters against a Michigan State Police database. Click here for more information.

Dog Owner in Hazel Park Targeted for Speaking Up and Speaking Out

By Doug Sanders

Toma's dog Puppy, 15 years old, and Diesel, 2 years old

Toma’s dog Puppy, 15 years old, and Diesel, 2 years old

Mike Toma just became collateral damage in Hazel Park’s war on Pit Bulls.

After helping organize support for his neighbor and friend Jamie Kraczkowski, who was ordered by city officials to send her Pit Bull into exile, Toma, 33, now finds that he’s facing the same fate. The day after a contentious Hazel Park City Council meeting at which animal advocates and others spoke out against a citywide ban on pit bulls, police and animal control officers knocked on Toma’s door and told him that he, too, had five days to get rid of his dogs.

“I was shocked that they targeted me for helping Jamie,” Toma said. “I stirred the pot and now I’m being punished for it. When I saw that paper they shoved into my screen door, I cried like a little kid. I mean, I’m a single guy and those dogs are my kids.” Continue reading

Dog Owners Desperate to Find Stolen Pit Bulls from East Jordan

 Update: Dogs Found – click here.

11071125_1415270558777672_6882189436460898660_n“They are our babies. We just want to see them come home.”

Two dogs vanish from their home. Police suspect they were stolen.

Now their owners are desperate for answers.

The search for pit bulls Tank and Gunner started Wednesday morning in East Jordan after one of their owners came home to find an empty house.

They immediately went to police and social media for help.

Since then, the effort to find the dogs has grown dramatically.

For the rest of the story, click here.

Pet Sitters Network North Raises $1000 for AC PAW and Peach Ranch

Lots of cuties showed up at the event. Photo credit: Pet Sitters Network North Facebook page

Lots of cuties showed up at the event. Photo credit: Pet Sitters Network North Facebook page

Pet Sitters Network North (PSNN) hosted it’s third annual Winter Dog Walk on Saturday, March 7th at the Silver Lake Recreational Area in Traverse City. Money raised went to PEACE Ranch and AC PAW PEACE Ranch is a an equine assisted therapy center and AC PAW is a dog and cat animal rescue organization. $1000 was raised at the event with $500 going to each organization. $200 was donated from PSNN and the rest was collected from donations that day. Continue reading

Foster a Dog and Save a Life – AC PAW to Host Volunteer Drive on Saturday, March 29th

Hank was rescued by AC PAW and is one of many examples of what a foster home and lots of loving can do to save a dog.

Hank was rescued by AC PAW and is one of many examples of what a foster home and lots of loving can do to save a dog.



One of the saddest thing an AC PAW volunteer might have to do is having to say no to a dog in need. However, with your help, those situations will happen a lot less often. With limited foster homes available, animal rescue groups rely on foster homes to save as many dogs and cats as they can. There are many different situations that animals find themselves in which put them in danger of going to an animal shelter. Foster care is a great alternative so that they can be put up for adoption while being taken care of in a normal home environment.

Some people like to foster kittens or puppies; some love the older dogs; some take on special needs such as blindness or diabetes; others will take any cat or dog who comes along in need of help. Typical fostering can last anywhere from a few weeks to a a few months or more depending on the situation. Foster homes allow an animal to live in a more stress-free environment than the one they would be subjected to at an animal shelter and must less likely to contract a disease or a new behavioral issue. It also allows the new adopter to have more information about the dog they are adopting because they have the foster mom or dad’s perspective on the dog’s personality and behavior from their point of view.

If you would like to learn more about fostering dogs with AC PAW, and have room in your heart and home for a temporary family friend to visit, please go to the AC PAW Volunteer Drive on Sunday, March 29th from 7 to 8 pm at PetSmart in Traverse City. For more information, call 231-587-0738. Hosted by AC PAW, PetSmart and the Coldwell Banker Homes for Dogs Project.

Cherryland Humane Society’s Shelter Supervisor Accused of Putting Live Kitten in Freezer

outside building

Shelter Employees Don’t Have State Certification to Euthanize Pets

The fate of a tiny black four-week-old kitten named Buttons seems to have been doomed from the beginning of her short life. After being abandoned by someone and found in a cooler on the property of the Cherryland Humane Society (CHS) by the outside gate, her fate was soon to be in the hands of the Shelter Supervisor, George Sperlbaum.

According to a Grand Traverse County police report, on Tuesday, August 5th, 2014, Shelter Attendant/Adoption Specialist Rosemarie Yetter says that she noticed a black kitten missing from a kennel and found it laying under a towel, barely moving in the “kitten room.” She picked up the kitten and tried to warm it against her chest. She called out for help to her co-workers, Adoption Specialists Elizabeth Williams and Malinda Cieslik. They took the kitten into the exam room and Cieslik grabbed a pop bottle to fill with hot water and got some towels. Williams got a heating pad and made some formula. When Yetter pulled the kitten away from her chest, Buttons was barely moving. The kitten was put on a towel while Yetter rubbed her to try to warm her up. She checked her eyes and gums. She was breathing. Her chest was moving and Yetter found a heartbeat when she gently squeezed her ribcage. Buttons was fed formula through a syringe and she swallowed it. Yetter put Buttons back on the heating pad to keep her as warm as possible, hoping that the kitten could be saved.

Yetter, a former Pet Nurse Assistant who worked at Banfield and a graduate of an online Veterinary Assistant program, told Cirslick and Williams that she would come back and check on Buttons in about ten minutes.

As the women exited the exam room, Shelter Supervisor George Sperlbaum, and former Radio Shack Manager and CHS dog walker, walked into the room. He had not been involved with the earlier attempts by the Shelter Attendants to save Buttons. A few minutes later, Yetter went to check on Buttons. The kitten was no longer on the exam table. Only a towel was there. Yetter explained in the police report how when an animal is euthanized, she likes to wrap it in a blanket and gently put the pet in the freezer to give compassion to the entire process. When she opened the freezer that day, she noticed that Buttons was just in the bag with no blanket. She put the bag on the top of the freezer and the bag MOVED! Continue reading

Local K9 Officers Receive Bullet & Stab Resistant Vests

from The Grand Traverse County Sheriff’s Department

Janke on left Jax on right

Janke on left Jax on right

The Grand Traverse County Sheriff’s Office K9s Janke and Jax have been awarded bullet & stab resistant vests thanks to a non profit organization, Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. Friends of Grand Traverse County K9s provided $2,023 for the vests. Continue reading

DeVol Appointed as New Kalkaska County Sheriff

There’s a new sheriff in town, as well as for the rest of Kalkaska County. And, it just happens to be the former undersheriff. Abe DeVol, who had served as undersheriff for retiring Kalkaska County Sheriff David Israel since 2009, was appointed to be Israel’s successor on Tuesday, Feb. 24, by a unanimous, 3-0, vote of the county’s “Committee to Appoint.” DeVol will also oversee Animal Control as David Israel did. For more on the story, please click here.

Cherryland Humane Society Posts Job Opening for Executive Director

Looking at a March departure of their current Executive Director, Mike Cherry, the Cherryland Humane Society recently posted the job listing for the position. The Executive Director serves as the chief administrative officer of the shelter and manages development, administration, operations and maintenance. They have direct supervision of the shelter manager, receptionist/administrative assistant and indirect supervision of all staff and volunteers. The person in this position reports to the Board of Directors. Continue reading

Feral Cats Don’t Belong in Shelters

Photo credit: Alley Cat Allies Facebook page

Photo credit: Alley Cat Allies Facebook page

From Alley Cat Allies

What is your usual reaction when you come across an outdoor cat? Is your instinct to call the local shelter or animal control to find her a home? On occasion, the cat you’ve come across is not homeless at all, but lives quite happily outdoors. Feral cats have no desire to snuggle with you on your couch. Do you know the difference? Feral cats are not socialized – they are usually not friendly towards people. They have either never had human contact or it has diminished over time. They are fearful of people and survive on their own outdoors. A feral cat is not likely to ever become a lap cat or enjoy living indoors.

Feral cats live healthy, natural lives within groups called colonies. They aren’t adoptable, and THEY DON’T BELONG IN SHELTERS. In animal shelters, the only happy ending for animals is adoption. Feral cats get euthanized. Continue reading