Monday, August 24, 2009

Sometimes rescue and community groups plan a big event and get the info in too late for LCD to feature it in the appropriate print issue. I've recently been notified about two events very early in October, that sound like a lot of fun. Since the October/Nov issue will only be out a couple of days before these events happen, I wanted to go ahead and tell you guys about them now. Yes, the events are more than a month away, but I wanted to give you plenty of time to plan to attend!
1st Annual Fido's Frolic on Folly
Saturday October 3rd

Fido’s Frolic is a scenic stroll on a Saturday afternoon with your favorite canine(s) and a few hundred other like-minded animal lovers. Registration and activities start at 2:00 PM. The walk begins at 3:00 PM and covers a 2- mile round trip route along Folly Beach, beginning at the pier. Water stations for dogs and people will be located along the route.

Ask everyone you know to sponsor you in the walk by pledging a specific dollar amount as a donation to support the homeless animals at Pet Helpers. Collect all of your pledge payments in advance and bring your Pledge Sheet and Payment checks with you to the walk.  If you are unable to join us on October 3rd, you still make a donation to the animals using

the registration form.

For Everyone’s safety:

Dogs must be leashed at all times!

Dogs must be current on all vaccinations

Dogs in heat are not allowed to participate

An adult must accompany children under 16

No bicycles, skateboards, or rollerblades allowed

No cats or other animals allowed

What Could I Win?

In addition to the satisfaction of raising money to help the many need animals at Pet Helpers and having fun, participants can also win great prizes.

Pledges of $25 or more will receive a surprise gift bag from Pet Helpers

Pledges of $50 or more will receive a Fido’s Frolic on Folly T-shirt and a surprise gift bag from Pet Helpers

The top three individual pledge raisers will win:

First: Admission for two to Holiday Inn Folly Beach’s New Year’s Eve bash and an overnight stay, Thursday, December 31, 2009 valued at $350.00

Second: A portrait painted of your dog by local artist Kevin Rockwell valued at $200.00

Third: A $150 gift Basket for your pet from All is Well located on James Island.

Top Team pledge raiser will win:

Each will receive a Limited Edition 2009 Fido’s Frolic on Folly Fleece Jacket.

Download the registration form HERE.

Download the pledge sheet HERE.

And Also on October 3rd: Dogtoberfest Pet Expo

10:00 AM  
Dogtoberfest' Pet Expo
Kiawah Island Community Association
Saturday, October 3rd, 2009
10:00 am - 2:00 pm

Friday, August 14, 2009

Charleston Animal Society Needs Items for Animal Enrichment Program:

The CAS is working with the ASPCA to implement a new enrichment program that will increase the live release rate of animals in the shelter. Studies have shown animals that remain in shelters for long periods of time begin to deteriorate socially, mentally, and behaviorally, often causing them to become less adoptable. Our staff has undergone specific training to keep these animals healthy and engaged through various techniques. While we have been provided with the training we need to help these animals, there are still items that we desperately need to assist the staff with the animal enrichment exercises. If you are interested in improving the lives and adoptability of shelter animals, we would love for you to consider donating the following items:

*Apple sauce
*Ice cube trays
*Plain yogurt
*Bouillon cubes or broth (chicken or beef)
*Peanut Butter
*Kongs (all sizes)
*Air Dog squeekers
*Nylabone toys
*Bar-B-Chew toys
*Dental Chews
*Double Action Chews
*Dogzilla Toys
*Ropes and Tugs
*Merrick Knuckle Bones (plain or basted)
*Plush Toys
*Gift Cards to Wal-mart, SuperPetz, PetsMart, and Target to purchase these items

Visit for more information about how to donate.

To learn more about animal enrichment, please visit

On behalf of the homeless and neglected animals who cannot speak for themselves, thank you for caring. We are appreciative of your continued friendship and confidence in the Charleston Animal Society and our ability to provide the best care possible for our homeless animals.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Gardening Hazards for Pets

 Fall will be here before we know it. While you are preparing your outdoor areas for your family to enjoy this fall just make sure you take the steps to ensure that it is safe for your pets to enjoy as well.

 “When planting your garden it is important to note that there are numerous house and garden plants which can be toxic to animals,” warns Dr. Murl Bailey, professor of toxicology at the Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences. “Several that come to mind initially are brunfelsia, lilies, cycads, kolanchoe, and oleander.”

 Brunfelsia, more commonly known as the yesterday, today & tomorrow plant, causes convulsive seizures in dogs that resemble strychnine poisoning.

 “We haven't seen any problems in cats from brunfelsia, as of this date,” notes Bailey. “While this plant is mostly a house plant, it could be in sheltered gardens in the southern part of Texas.”

 Cycads, low growing palm trees which are used both indoors and outdoors, are another type of plant that is toxic to dogs as they tend to chew on the roots. The cycad has a toxin in the root and stems that is toxic to the liver.

 “When the liver is affected, the dog’s body stops producing the normal, endogenous clotting factors and the dogs start bleeding excessively--to the extent that they can bleed to death,” explains Bailey.

 While brunfelsia and cycads may not be known to cause problems in cats, lilies are especially harmful to them. Once cats ingest lilies, they develop nausea and vomiting. Then they get depressed, and stop eating.

 “Why cats like to eat them I don't know, probably boredom, but once they do these cats must be treated by a veterinarian, preferably within 24 hours and not later than 48 hours,” states Bailey.  “We do not know which toxin(s) are present in the lilies, but they are very toxic to the kidneys.”

 Kolanchoe is a type of house plant that is known to be toxic. This plant contains a chemical which is similar to the human heart medication, digoxin.

 “The garden plant oleander also contains digoxin-like compounds. Both kolanchoe and oleander can be toxic to all animals, including dogs and cats, if ingested,” says Bailey.

 While spring is a time to plant beautiful flowers in your yard, it also brings pesky insects out in numbers.  Because of this, another potential hazard this time of year is pesticides.

 “All pesticides can cause problems in dogs and cats if the chemicals are stored incorrectly and misused,” warns Bailey.  

 Bailey stresses that labels on all chemicals should be read very carefully and followed, especially when used around pets. He notes that animals do not have to eat the toxin; they can also become exposed through the skin and in the case of volatile agents, can be exposed just by breathing the contaminated air.

 “If a pesticide is not specifically labeled to be used on dogs and/or cats, the pesticide can cause toxicities,” Bailey states.  “Some insecticides are labeled specifically for dogs and not for cats so it is important to read the labels thoroughly.”

 While there are more and more products out there that claim to be environmentally safe or “green,” Bailey is not entirely convinced of their worth.

 “Many alternative and "so-called" environmentally safe compounds are usually not very effective in controlling fleas, flies and ticks. The best thing for an animal owner to do is follow the labeled instructions,” he adds.

 Spring is a great time to enhance and enjoy the outdoors.  Taking the time to make sure that everything you put in and on your yard is safe for your furry friends will ensure this time is special for the entire family.


Pet Talk is a service of the College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, Texas A&M University. Stories can be viewed on the Web at

Suggestions for future topics may be directed to

Monday, July 20, 2009

Which Wild Animals Attack our Pets the Most?

According to VPI pet insurance the following are the 10 animals aside from dogs and cats that were most responsible for pet injury claims in 2008:

Top 10 Animals To Attack Pets
1. Snake
2. Coyote
3. Raccoon
4. Squirrel
5. Scorpion
6. Javelina
7. Porcupine
8. Ground Hog
9. Skunk
10. Rat

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Sleeping Disorders in Animals

                Maybe you’ve seen the comical home video on ‘YouTube’ titled “sleepwalking fail”? It is a short clip of a sleeping dog that starts to “run” horizontally in his sleep, then suddenly jumps up and slams into a wall! Although the video is seriously funny, there is nothing funny about what might be wrong with this animal. This dog could be dreaming, although it unknown for certain if animals dream according to Dr. M.A. Crist, Clinical Assistant Professor at Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine. Most likely this animal is displaying signs of a sleep disorder.

Sleeping disorders are not healthy, and as with humans, we see disturbed sleep patterns as a sign of old age, disease or life-altering illness. The two sleeping disorders that are most dangerous to an animal’s health are narcolepsy and cataplexy. If your pet has one of these disorders and is left alone, or unattended near water, they could possibly drown.

“Narcolepsy is the occurrence of uncontrollable Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep phase characterized by the presence of rapid eye movements and fast phase activity,” said Crist “Cataplexy is the sudden development of rapid duration voluntary muscle weakness, flaccidity, or paralysis of all muscles except extraocular and respiratory muscles. These two sleep disorders are usually a congenital and inherited condition that can be brought on by excitement such as playing, eating, drinking, or greeting owners and can last seconds to minutes, many times a day, or infrequently.”

Warning signs of one or both of these disorders are the pet may suddenly collapse into lateral or sterna recumbancy with no movements. With narcolepsy the animal appears asleep, and with cataplexy the animal is alert but can’t follow motion with eye movements. The pet can be aroused with petting, external stimuli, and loud noises. These disorders are not curable.

Older cats may also experience behavior changes in sleep cycles or waking in the night, restlessness and pacing. This is either related to senility or a disease called Hyperthyroidism.

“Hyperthyroidism occurs when the thyroid gland produces an excess amount of thyroid hormone which can lead to cardiac disease and high blood pressure,” said Crist. “A specific thyroid blood test can be checked to verify this abnormality and treatment can be initiated. Melatonin, an internal hormone secreted by the pineal gland during darkness, can also be given as an oral supplement usually with minimal side effects as a potential treatment for sleep disorders.”

Of course, there are several things that pet owners can do for their pets before their sleeping disorders become too severe.

“If owners notice their pet having a change in their sleeping pattern they want to take them to their veterinarian for a complete physical examination and laboratory analysis,” said Crist. “Medical problems may contribute to these disturbances and some medicines may need to be prescribed by a veterinarian to help combat their sleep disturbance.”

 “While melatonin has been useful for treating sleep disorders that arise from hypothyroidism, senility, or cognitive dysfunction,” said Crist, “it is not regulated by the FDA, so ask a veterinarian the correct dose for your pet. Acupuncture and herbal medications are other modalities that might be used to treat sleep disorders in pets.”

Placing your pet on certain diets can also aid in their sleeping troubles.

“Omega 3 fatty acids and diets that are enriched with antioxidants are good for dogs with cognitive dysfunction and sleep issues,” said Crist. “Therapeutic diets supplemented with antioxidants such as vitamin C, mixed tocopherols, beta-carotene, flavenoids, carotenoids, and omega-3 fatty acids had dogs show improvement on the performance of cognitive tasks than dogs on a non-supplemented diet.”

It will always be a true mystery whether or not pets dream.

“In mammals and birds, studies have shown that long episodes of nondreaming sleep referred to as “slow-wave” or SW sleep is followed by short episodes of dreaming sleep referred to as “rapid-eye-movement” or REM sleep,” said Crist. “If a disturbance in this pattern occurs then sleeping problems can begin. However, we will never really know if pets dream because we cannot talk to them.  However, we do know that dogs have the REM sleep phase and this is the dream activity period in people. Dogs do have leg movements, facial twitching, vocalizations, and tail movements. Therefore, it might be likely they are having a dream.”

Crist mentioned that it is important to know some sleep disorders require a lengthy behavioral consultation and examination by a veterinarian.  Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor antidepressants should be prescribed for these dogs and cats who have diagnosed obsessive-compulsive behavior disorders that are disturbing their sleeping patterns.  She also reminded that by always taking our pets to the veterinarian for their regular check-up, many potential problems can be caught before they seriously affect your pet’s health.


Pet Talk is a service of the College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, Texas A&M University. Stories can be viewed on the Web at

Suggestions for future topics may be directed to

Learn to Communicate with Your Dog

On Saturday, August 8th, from 9-1, animal communicator Barbara Rawson will be offering a Mini-Clinic at her home on Johns Island.  Grounding methods, boundary setting, and telepathic skills will be taught and practiced.  The clinic will be beneficial to those who would like to be more focused and centered, to those who may want to continue on and take the Level I Animal Communication Workshop, and to those who want to begin reconnecting to their true self.
The fee is $50.  All materials, healthy snacks, iced tea and coffee are provided. Email Barbara at or call 843.364.2210 to register.
Please note: If you are interested in having a young persons' (17 and under) version of this, please let Barbara know and it will be done.

Monday, July 13, 2009

LCD Loves

We love the clean and modern design of Larkin Floyd's Pet Portraits. Tres Chic! More info about Larkin and her commissioned pet portraits HERE.

Monday, July 06, 2009

My Three Dogs Named Best Daycare and Best Groomer, Has 2nd Anniversary Celebration

Below are a mixture of candid party shots and photos from photographer Jon Shumpert during the My Three Dogs Dog Daycare, Grooming and Boutique 2nd Anniversary Celebration.

Other than celebrating their 2nd year, My Three Dogs also celebrated being named BEST DAYCARE in Charleston by the City Paper and BEST GROOMER by the Moultrie News!!!!

Congrats to owner Kris Verdi and her amazing staff!

Friday, July 03, 2009

To protect your pet on the Fourth of July, take these precautions provided by the Humane Society of the United States:

  • Resist the urge to take your pet to fireworks displays.
  • Do not leave your pet in the car. With only hot air to breathe inside a car, your pet can suffer serious health effects—even death—in a few short minutes. Partially opened windows do not provide sufficient air, but they do provide an opportunity for your pet to be stolen.
  • Keep your pets indoors at home in a sheltered, quiet area. Some animals can become destructive when frightened, so be sure that you've removed any items that your pet could destroy or that would be harmful to your pet if chewed. Leave a television or radio playing at normal volume to keep him company while you're attending Fourth of July picnics, parades, and other celebrations.
  • If you know that your pet is seriously distressed by loud noises like thunder, consult with your veterinarian before July 4th for ways to help alleviate the fear and anxiety he or she will experience during fireworks displays.
  • Never leave pets outside unattended, even in a fenced yard or on a chain. In their fear, pets who normally wouldn't leave the yard may escape and become lost, or become entangled in their chain, risking injury or death.
  • Make sure your pets are wearing identification tags so that if they do become lost, they can be returned promptly. Animals found running at-large should be taken to the local animal shelter, where they will have the best chance of being reunited with their owners.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Humane Society University to Offer College Degrees in Animal Protection Studies

(June 18, 2009) - Further advancing its leadership in human-animal studies, Humane Society University, an affiliate of The Humane Society of the United States, announced today that it has received a license as a higher education degree-granting institution by the District of Columbia Education Licensure Commission. The HSUS is the first animal welfare organization to receive such authority and distinction.

Humane Society University is the first institution in the nation to offer bachelor degree programs in animal studies and the first in the world to offer a bachelor’s degree in animal policy and advocacy. The degrees are designed to educate students to qualify them for employment with one of the more than 17,000 U.S. nonprofit organizations that seek to protect, provide services to or advocate for animals, and to advance scholarship in the field.

Undergraduate degrees and graduate certificates in animal studies, animal policy and advocacy, and humane leadership will begin in fall of 2009. Offering both online coursework and onsite classes at its Washington, D.C. campus, HSU promotes core competencies in a rigorous and relevant academic curriculum that encourages critical thinking and examination of practices and assumptions related to animals. HSU recruits leading scholars in the field to its faculty, and seeks to attract students who wish to be on the forefront of creating a more humane society by giving them the tools they need to succeed. 

“Offering Bachelor of Science degrees and graduate certificates makes sense in today’s world of complex human-animal relationships,” says Robert Roop, Ph.D., president of Humane Society University. “The programs are designed for students who seek to advance work on behalf of animals by gaining advanced skills and knowledge. The interdisciplinary curriculum offered by HSU is unmatched by any other licensed scholastic body in the world.”

The faculty consists of experts in the field of human-animal studies, including 26 instructors who will teach courses. Twenty of the faculty members hold doctoral-level degrees in animal behavior, policy, psychology, sociology, literature, veterinary medicine, law and other fields.

General Admission Requirements for the Undergraduate Program:

• Applicants must have completed at least 60 college credits, satisfying all general education requirements prior to admittance to HSU.
• The undergraduate curriculum provides the final two years of undergraduate study, enabling students to earn up to an additional 60 credits through completion of an accelerated 8-week semester of either online, onsite, or hybrid classes.
• Candidates may take individual courses but must complete their degree requirements within 5 years of matriculation, and obtain a minimum of 120 credits in order to graduate.
• Students who have completed bachelor or graduate degrees at other institutions are eligible to enroll in graduate certificate programs in animal studies, animal policy and advocacy, and humane leadership.

About The Humane Society of the United States:

Founded in 1954, The Humane Society of the United States is the nation’s largest animal protection organization — backed by 11 million Americans, or one of every 28. For more than a half-century, The HSUS has been fighting for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education, and hands-on programs. 

About Humane Society University:

HSU offers 33 courses which lead to an undergraduate degree or graduate certificate, along with a catalog of 45 additional non-credit opportunities to earn a professional certificate, complete a self-paced course, or attend one of the many onsite workshops in animal care, shelter management, and advocacy throughout the United States. To learn more about these exciting and innovative programs and to complete an application for admissions visit, or e-mail

Media Contact
Rachel Querry, 301-258-8255,

Monday, June 15, 2009

Outer Rings of Hurricane Hugo Makes Landfall in Charleston. 2:44pm EST 9/21/89

LCD Hurricane Preparedness Guide for Pet Owners

Make sure that your pets are current on their vaccinations. Pet friendly shelters require proof of vaccines.

Have a current photograph.

Keep a collar with identification on your pet and have a leash on hand to control your pet.

Have a properly-sized pet carrier for each animal. Pet friendly shelters require them. 
Practice putting it together quickly.

Plan your evacuation strategy and don't forget your pet!

Contact hotels and motels outside your immediate area to check policies on accepting pets. Ask about any restrictions on number, size, and species. Ask if "no pet" policies would be waived in an emergency. 

Make a list of animal-friendly places and keep it handy. 

Call ahead for a reservation as soon as you think you might have to leave your home.

Check with friends, relatives, or others outside your immediate area to see if they would shelter you and your animals or just your animals, if necessary.

Make a list of boarding facilities and veterinary offices that might be able to shelter animals in emergencies; include 24-hour telephone numbers.

Ask your local animal shelter if it provides foster care or shelter for pets in an emergency. This should be your last resort, as shelters have limited resources and are likely to be stretched to their limits during an emergency.

If you are able, leave early. Don't wait for a mandatory evacuation order. An unnecessary trip is far better than waiting too long to leave safely with your pets. If you wait to be evacuated by emergency officials, you may be told to leave your pets behind.

Animals brought to a pet shelter are required to have:

proper identification collar and rabies tagproper identification on all belongings

a carrier or cage

a leash

a muzzle for dog aggressive dogs 

an ample supply of food, water (1 gallon for every 10lbs.) food bowls, any medications 

specific care instructions and news papers or trash bags for clean-up

Bring pets indoors well in advance of a storm - reassure them and remain calm.

Pet shelters will be filled on first come, first served basis. 

Call ahead and determine availability.

A sailboat pushed onshore by Hurricane Hugo - Lockwood Drive, Downtown Charleston

Walk pets on a leash until they become re-oriented to their home - often familiar scents and landmarks may be altered and pets could easily be confused and become lost. 

Also, downed power lines, reptiles brought in with high water and debris can all pose a threat for animals after a disaster.

If pets cannot be found after a disaster, contact the local animal control office to find out where lost animals can be recovered. 

Bring along a picture of your pet if possible. After a disaster animals can become aggressive or defensive - monitor their behavior.


The North Charleston Coliseum will provide shelter only for those people who can not otherwise evacuate with their pets. Entry is limited to one person per pet.

The following hotel chains are pet friendly and there are several just a few hours away from Charleston that would serve as a refuge from the storm.

Best Western: 800-528-1234
Clarion: 800-252-7466
Comfort Inn: 800-228-5150
Days Inn: 800-329-7466
Econo Lodge: 800-553-2666
Holiday Inn: 800-465-4329
Quality Inn: 800-228-5151
Ramada Inn: 800-228-2828
Residence Inn: 800-331-3131

Also check out, a search engine for vacation and short term rentals across the US. You can search specifically for pet friendly homes, townhouses and villas to rent.