Whiskers & Wine: ARL Toasts its Biggest Supporters

THANK YOU to our 400+ President’s Council donors for making our important work possible!

On the evening of May 12, 2016, over 125 of ARL’s biggest supporters came together at the historic Fairmont Copley Plaza in Boston for the second annual Whiskers & Wine President’s Council Spring Social. See photos from last night’s event.

ARL’s corporate sponsors, Board of Directors, Leadership Council, President’s Council (those who donate $1K or more annually), volunteers, and staff toasted its most committed supporters for making our important work possible.

Click here or on the “play” button below to watch a video about the over 13,400 animals in need they helped in 2015!

Royalty Free Music from Bensound

Throughout the evening, guests mingled with fellow animal lovers over sparkling wine and delicious hors d’oeuvres. During the speaking program, key members from the ARL discussed the impact that our donors’ generosity has had on the thousands of animals who receive care through ARL’s programs and services each year.

Malcolm McDonald, ARL’s Board Chair, kicked off the evening with a big THANK YOU to everyone who made last night’s event– and our very important work possible. He also spoke about being the proud pet parent of two special ARL alum, his dog Hazel and his cat Max, without whom he couldn’t imagine his life without!

Dr. Kyle Quigley,  ARL’s Lead Veterinarian of Community Veterinary Services, Brian O’Connor, ARL’s Manager of Rescue Services, and Debby Vogel, ARL’s Manager of Volunteer and Educational Programs, shared very personal and heartfelt stories about how their individual programs positively impacted an animal in need.

From a woman desperate to get her cat spayed in the middle of a snowstorm, to a dog named Faith that was rescued after 7 weeks of being on the run, to a dog named CJ who helped get a young man get through a very difficult time, there were many laughs and even some tears shared amongst the crowd.

President Mary Nee also gave a glimpse into ARL’s exciting vision for the future. “Tonight, I am pleased to share with you our newly adopted statement of mission, the foundation that will guide our programs and plans in the years to come: We are an unwavering champion for animals in need, committed to keeping them safe and healthy in habitats and homes… It’s because of people like YOU who support this work, that most animals will able to live safely and healthy in their habitats and homes.”

Walter Kenyon, ARL’s Leadership Council Chair, closed the evening by sharing his excitement for following up with President’s Council members in the weeks ahead about the details of this bold new vision.

VERY SPECIAL THANKS TO… Our generous donors for expressing your love of animals, compassion, and kindness through your support of the Animal Rescue League of Boston!

…and to our corporate supporters of Whiskers & Wine 2016…

BIG DOG SPONSORS
Blue Hills Bank
Katherine Burdon
David McGrath
Anonymous

TOP CAT SPONSORS
Mintz Levin
Malcolm McDonald & Susan Passoni
Nancy Z. Bender

PUPPY PAL SPONSORS
AAF CPAs
Grossman Marketing Group
MFS
Risk Strategies Company
STV | DPM
Carol Akerson & Rich Kelly
Doug Zeghibe
Jane & Andy Urban
Lee Ann, Mike, and Mia Leahy

FELINE FRIEND SPONSOR
Bowditch & Dewey
East Boston Savings Bank
Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty
Kirkiles & Associates Commercial Insurance Brokerage, LLC
Russo’s
Sullivan & Worcester
Kenn Freed
Mark J. Lanza, Esq.
The Fairmont Copley Plaza

 

USSC Increases Animal Fighting Penalties

ARL sent a proposal to the USSC urging higher guidelines for individuals found guilty of federal animal fighting crimes

Earlier this month, the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) reported that the United States Sentencing Commission (USSC) was considering increasing penalties for animal fighting.

The ARL believes that these higher guidelines will help deter any potential offenders, and help to protect animals like Turtle from becoming “bait dogs”.

The ARL believes that these higher guidelines will help deter any potential offenders, and help to protect animals like Turtle from becoming “bait dogs”.

Click here to learn more.

The ARL, along with countless other animal welfare organizations, sent letters urging the USSC to consider higher sentencing ranges for individuals found guilty of federal animal fighting crimes.

Our voice was heard!

On April 15, 2016, the USSC voted unanimously to approve increases for the sentencing penalties associated with animal fighting. Previously, the range was 6 to 12 months in federal prison; the range is now 21 to 27 months in federal prison.

The USSC also authorized judges to impose upward departures – sentences above the usual range – for those cases where:

  • The suffering of animals was prolonged.
  • The fighting enterprise was on an exceptional scale (an exceptionally large number of animals was involved in the fighting enterprise).

The ARL believes that these higher guidelines will help deter any potential offenders, and help to protect animals like Turtle from becoming “bait dogs”.

It is for Turtle and so many other animals like her that the ARL continues to urge that those who are responsible for such harm and cruelty are brought to justice.

TAKE ACTION FOR ANIMALS! Learn the 7 most common warning signs of animal cruelty and report any suspicious activity to your local authorities.

 

ARL Helps Save Revere Cat Abandoned in Dumpster

The Revere Police and Animal Rescue League of Boston Law Enforcement Departments are searching for information leading to suspects in this case

Revere cat

The 1-year-old black male cat was discovered inside a heavy canvas gym bag in a dumpster located at Wonderland Marketplace in Revere, MA.

Earlier this week, the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) responded to a Law Enforcement investigation about a 1-year-old cat that was found cruelly abandoned in a dumpster located at the rear of the Big Lots located at 151 VFW Parkway ( Wonderland Marketplace ) in Revere, Massachusetts.

The black male cat was discovered inside of a heavy canvas Everlast brand gym bag that was zippered shut. The bag was soaked in urine, as was the frightened feline trapped inside.

Read more about the case, as covered by Fox 25 WFXT and Channel 7 WHDH.

“This is one of the most horrific cases of animal abandonment I’ve seen”, says Lt. Alan Borgal, ARL’s Director of Law Enforcement.

The cat was transported to a local Revere animal hospital where he was treated for urine scalding and hypothermia. He was later moved to a veterinary clinic in West Peabody, Massachusetts for follow-up care.

Despite the fear and incredible pain he’s suffered, the cat has been the perfect patient. “He’s a very sweet and affectionate cat,” describes Lt. Borgal. “At one point hopefully he must have been a loved pet.”

The Revere Police and ARL/Boston Law Enforcement Departments is still searching for any information that would lead to the suspects in this case. Animal abandonment is a criminal offense of animal cruelty and, therefore, in

Revere cat

The “Revere Cat” was immediately transported to a local animal hospital for treatment. If you recognize this cat or have any information, please contact the Revere Police Department at (781) 284-1212 or the Animal Rescue League of Boston’s Law Enforcement Department at (617) 226-5613.

Massachusetts the offense is punishable up to 7 years in prison for first-time offenders– and up to 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine for subsequent offenses.

If you have any information regarding this case, please contact the Revere Police Department at (781) 284-1212 or the Animal Rescue League of Boston’s Law Enforcement Department at (617) 226-5613.

“Animal Abandonment is a very unnecessary crime,” reminds Lt. Borgal. “There are many animal shelters like the ARL, animal hospitals, veterinarians, animal control officers, and police officers in Massachusetts that you can call if you need help surrendering or caring for your pet.”

 

Support the ARL Boston Marathon Runners

After months of training through winter weather, our runners are ready to take on 26.2 for animals in need!

Boston Marathon sponsor JH

Thank you to Boston Marathon sponsor John Hancock for including the ARL in the 2016 charity bib program!

You can show your support for the ARL’s Boston Marathon Team

1. Donating to the team to help them reach their goal of $35,000 by visiting https://www.crowdrise.com/ARLBoston2016

2. Tracking their race progress at using their bib numbers at  http://bit.ly/1NcYdDm

Andrea 30899
Jillian 30776
Alexis 30967
Marco 30814

3. Joining us in Coolidge Corner near Marion Street to cheer for our runners at they near the finish line

A VERY SPECIAL THANKS to the dedicated runners on our 2016 Boston Marathon team!

 

75 Cats Spayed/Neutered During ARL’s Fix-a-Feral Clinic

THANK YOU to our dedicated volunteers and staff who made this important work possible!

On a very snowy Sunday morning, 34 extremely dedicated ARL volunteers and 11 ARL employees stood ready and waiting to receive 75+ cats during its first Fix-A-Feral Clinic of the year at ARL’s Boston shelter.

During the Fix-a-Feral Clinic, 75 cats were successfully spay/neutered, vaccinated, and received an individual behavioral screening.

Thanks to a generous donor, the ARL was able to offer these trap, neuter, and release (TNR) services to 14 feral cat caretakers in the Greater Boston Area—FREE of charge!

Cheryl Traversi, manager of community veterinary services at the ARL, works very closely with these community cat trappers, feeders, and caretakers.

“Providing spay and neuter services to these community cat trappers is a vital part of feral cat colony management,” explains Dr. Kyle Quigley, lead veterinarian of ARL’s community veterinary services.

In fact, studies have shown that humanely trapping, spaying/neutering, and releasing (TNR) feral cats back to the colonies where they have been living is one of the most effective ways to decrease the number of homeless animals in our community.

Feral cats are cats that have either lived for an extended period of time with little or no human contact. Sometimes these cats have been abandoned by previous owners; other times they are the offspring of stray or other feral cats.

Watch the video below for a brief recap of ARL’s Spring Fix-a-Feral Clinic 

PUT YOUR PAWS TOGETHER FOR our incredible volunteers and staff members who helped with Sunday’s Fix-a-Feral Clinic… and for our donor, without whom this week’s clinic would not have been possible!

Learn more about ARL’s high-quality affordable spay/neuter services at arlboston.org/spay-neuter.

 

Strong Showing at Humane Lobby Day 2016!

ARL participates alongside local & national animal welfare organizations

Earlier today, state representatives and citizen animal advocates reinforced to legislators how important the issue of animal welfare is to their constituents by the strong attendance at Humane Lobby Day 2016.

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ARL’s director of advocacy, Nadine Pellegrini, takes the podium at Humane Lobby Day.

Volunteers and staff proudly represented the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) at the Massachusetts State House. Attendees who visited the ARL table were impressed by the important work that we’re doing in the community and our continuous efforts to educate the public about animal welfare and safety.

A big piece of that effort is the addition of Nadine Pellegrini, ARL’s director of advocacy. In her new role, Nadine will provide leadership and direction on the organization’s busy animal welfare agenda.

“I’m very proud to be here at my first Lobby Day,” Nadine told the crowd. “You folks are unstoppable!”

This year, Nadine was asked to speak to event attendees about bill S. 1092, An Act Relative to the Tethering of Dogs. After discussing the research behind the “anti-tethering” bill, Nadine closed with the gentle reminder that, “dogs are not only a part of our lives, but also a partner in our lives.”

Key representatives from HSUS, MSPCA, and ASPCA also spoke about the important animal welfare bills that constituents should address with their legislators, such as: (S. 1103) An Act to Protect Puppies and Kittens; (S. 2069) An Act Regulating the Enforcement of Illegal Hunting Practices; (S. 415) An Act Expanding the Powers of the Director of Fisheries and Wildlife; (H. 658) An Act Relative to the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife.

Click here to learn why ARL supports or opposes each bill.

ARL staff spoke with state representatives and citizen animal advocates about what makes our local organization unique.

ARL staff and volunteers spoke with citizen animal advocates about the ARL and it’s programs and services.

Awards were also presented to local town and city leaders who were identified as champions for animal protection and welfare.

The Municipal Leadership Award was granted to Boston City Councilor Matt O’Malley and to Cambridge City Councilor Marc McGovern. The Humane Legislator Award was presented to Massachusetts State Senator Michael Moore and to Massachusetts State Representative Lori Ehrlich.

CONGRATULATIONS… to this year’s award recipients and thank you for helping to achieve stronger protections for animals in the Commonwealth!

VERY SPECIAL THANKS… to our Humane Lobby Day 2016 partners HSUS, MSPCA, and ASPCA for giving animals a voice and asking state legislators to pass laws that benefit both animals and humans alike!

 

ARL Saves Baby Owl and Kittens during Snowstorm

All in a day’s work: Rescue Services helps newborn critters in New England

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ARL’s Rescue Services pulled nine kittens from an old work duct in Jamaica Plain. The kittens are now safe in ARL’s foster care!

On Monday, the Animal Rescue League of Boston’s (ARL) Rescue Service team, Danielle Genter and Mike Brammer responded to a call for help from an employee of the VA Hospital in Jamaica Plain, MA.

The concerned citizen contacted the ARL when the feral cat that she feeds on Monday mornings did not come out as usual. She could, however, hear the animal whimpering and assumed it was stuck somewhere outdoors.

ARL’s Rescue team arrived on the scene and quickly identified two holes near the building. During their initial inspection, they looked into the holes and took photographs, but did not hear anything. Shortly after placing food inside the hole, however, they heard a faint meow coming from one of the holes.

ARL’s expert rescue technicians, Danielle Genter and Mike Brammer, try to place the baby owl back in its nest.

ARL’s expert rescue technicians, Danielle Genter and Mike Brammer, attempt to return the baby owl to its nest.

Click here to read the full story, as reported by Boston.com.

After pulling one kitten out of the small hole under the building, Danielle and Mike were in for a surprise: in total they found nine 4-week-old kittens taking cover from the storm inside the old duct work!

“Gradually, one by one, we pulled all nine kittens out. We were there for about an hour trying to catch them,” says Mike.

Although cold and hungry, all nine kittens were in perfect heath and were transferred to ARL’s foster care program where they’ll stay until they’re old enough to be put up for adoption.

Earlier in the week, the kittens’ feral cat mom had also been taken into ARL’s Boston shelter for spay surgery and later released.

Meanwhile…

While in Jamaica Plain, the Rescue Team also responded to the Arnold Arboretum where a small baby owl was found on the ground below its nest. At first, Danielle and Mike attempted to return the owl to its home.

With the help of arboretum staff and a bucket truck, the baby owl was returned to its nest where its two siblings were waiting. The team was packing up and ready to leave when someone spotted the baby owl on the ground- again! It had either fallen, or been kicked out by its siblings.

Click here to read the full story, as reported by Boston.com.

With the threat of freezing overnight temperatures coming in and the possible predators that could harm the young bird, the team ultimately determined that the baby owl would be safest at the Blue Hill’s Trailside Museum in Milton, MA.

TO LEARN MORE about ARL’s Rescue Services team, visit http://www.arlboston.org/rescue-services/!

…or follow them live on Twitter @ARLBostonRescue!

 

ARL Urges USSC to Impose Higher Guidelines for Animal Fighting Cases

The proposal would protect animals like Turtle from becoming “bait dogs”

animal fighting

BEFORE: Turtle was found severely injured and cruelly abandoned on the side of the road in 2009. AFTER: Today, Turtle is happy, healthy, and loving life with her new family!

Animal fighting is not a crime that just happens ‘someplace else’.

Sadly, the brutality and suffering that result from animal fighting are all too familiar to the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL). Each year, ARL’s law enforcement department, rescue team, and shelter veterinarians and staff are called in to help domesticated animals and wildlife in Massachusetts found in these extreme situations.

One of the most inhumane cases that we’ve encountered was that of Turtle, the Pit Bull-type dog who had been left for dead on the side of the road.

In December 2009, the ARL responded to a call about an injured dog in Hyde Park, MA. Turtle was discovered lying curled up and motionless in the bitter cold. Her body was covered with old bite wounds that had been inexpertly stitched, as well as dozens of new bites on her face and underbelly, and a fractured leg. All of these were classic signs of a “bait dog” used in dogfighting.

Turtle received emergency medical attention and surgery to stabilize her condition. Afterward, she underwent months of long and strenuous physical and behavioral rehabilitation at the ARL.

The ARL proposes higher guidelines for animal fighting cases…

It’s because of dogs like Turtle, and so many other animals used for blood sports, that the ARL recently sent a letter to the United States Sentencing Commission (USSC) urging higher guidelines for individuals found guilty of federal animal fighting crimes.

Although the maximum penalty for animal fighting was raised to 5 years in federal prison in 2007, the guidelines used to determine the actual sentence length had not changed. This means that those convicted for animal fighting may not have received any jail time at all.

Turtle fully recovered and listening intently to ARL's President Mary Nee at the State House during Lobby Day 2014!

Turtle fully recovered and listening intently to ARL’s President Mary Nee at the State House during Lobby Day 2014!

Based upon our own experience, as well as that of other law enforcement agencies, the ARL has proposed that the USSC:

  • Consider adding additional penalty levels for animal fighting crimes where guns and/or drugs were involved.
  • Urge the sentencing judge to consider other factors to impose a higher sentence, such as extreme cruelty or failure to provide adequate shelter, food, and medical care.

The ARL believes that these new proposals would result in longer sentences and appropriately punish a current offender and possibly deter any potential offenders.

Turtle was lucky that she was found in time to save. Her recovery is a testament to her own strength and courage, as well as the wonderful veterinary and rehabilitative care she received at the ARL.

It is for Turtle and so many other animals like her that ARL continues to fight and urge that those who are responsible for such harm and cruelty are brought to justice.

TAKE ACTION FOR ANIMALS! Learn the 7 most common warning signs of animal cruelty and report any suspicious activity to your local authorities.

 

ARL Shelters Closed TODAY – Thursday, March 31

ARL shelters & Boston Veterinary Care are closed for all-staff meeting

Dedicated ARL volunteers will be on-site throughout the day caring for our animals. A special thank you goes out to those pawsome folks!

You can search adoptable animals now to learn more about the cats, dogs, and small animals who are looking for a home and contact our shelters tomorrow, Friday, April 1, during regular hours, 1:00 pm-6:30 pm.

Boston Shelter: (617) 426-9170 or adoption@arlboston.org
Brewster: (508) 255-1030 or brewster@arlboston.org
Dedham: The shelter is currently closed for remodeling.

Boston Veterinary Care will re-open tomorrow, Friday, April 1, at 8:00 am.

For emergencies, please contact Bluepearl – specialty + emergency medicine for pets at (781) 684-8387.

 

ARL Debuts Christine Barton Feline Suite

ARL’s newly constructed Feline Suite has been named in memory of longtime volunteer, Christine Barton

Earlier this week, volunteers and staff gathered together at ARL’s Boston shelter to celebrate the life of the caring, committed, and longtime volunteer, Christine Barton.

Click here to read the North End Waterfront article.

During the naming ceremony, ARL’s volunteer and educational programs manager, Debra Vogel, gave a heartfelt speech about why the Feline Suite was dedicated in Christine’s name:

feline suite

On Monday, ARL’s new Feline Suite was dedicated to longtime volunteer, Christine Barton! Funding for the Feline Suite was generously donated by the Gelnaw family!

Shy and fractious cats, like Frisky, surrendered to the ARL’s Boston shelter sometimes struggle in the traditional kennel environment. The newly renovated Feline Suite gives these cats a more home-like setting to rehabilitate and ultimately find a permanent home.

In the summer of 2015, the ARL lost a treasured member of their volunteer team, Christine Barton, after a battle with cancer.
 
Christine was a feline friend, a photographer, and a mentor. She spent countless hours patiently caring for the animals at the ARL.  Her devotion spanned from sitting for long periods of time with a shy cat to waiting for the perfect photo of a rambunctious puppy.
 
While her love for animals was obvious, her concern for children was just as strong. Christine frequently said, ‘I just want to do good’.
 
Feline Suite

ARL president, Mary Nee, and Feline Suite donor, Michelle Gelnaw unveil Christine’s plaque at the dedication ceremony.

Christine’s final wish was to have one more chance to visit the ARL’s Boston shelter. The Feline Suite that is being dedicated in her name, gives challenging cats a second chance. In this space, current volunteers can carry on Christine’s work to care for the cats in residence there. Nothing made Christine happier than to see once challenging cats flourish and find a new home.

Funding for the Christine Barton Feline Suite was generously donated by the Gelnaw family. They requested that the Feline Suite be named in Christine’s memory to help her legacy live on!
 

THANK YOU to Christine Barton for her many years of dedicated service to animals in need at the ARL!

…And to the Gelnaw family for their generous donation to help give struggling cats a chance to find a loving home!