Ah, an afternoon filled with rubber duckies, writing, and Andrew Bird. Thanks goodness there is only the fox running through the backyard to witness my silly dance.

I suspect the cat is only giving me odd looks because he didn't see "feeding Malcolm more Greenies" in that list.
I'm a firm believer that you have the right to alter your own body in whatever way you see fit. Have at it.

Caution, the link and discussion in this post may be upsetting to animal lovers, or anyone who isn't a complete asshole. )

I will say, in case anyone was too squeamish to read the link, that the kittens in question are okay now.

People are sick bastards.

Cat Lady

Oct. 8th, 2008 07:34 pm
It's POSSIBLE that I knit my kitten a sweater.

But you can't prove anything.
My journal, my politically-incorrect, rotten opinion. 

Vegans, as a whole, annoy the shit out of me.  I'm sure there are some lovely people out there who are vegan and manage to have great lives without spending all of their time lost in the wonder of how much better they are than everyone else, but I sure as shit haven't met them. 

Far more annoying in the scheme of things though, are vegan knitters.  If you don't want to knit with wool?  -Don't-.  But spare me the fucking lecture about how wool is cruel, especially if you plan to trot out that tired old PETA link.  I've read it.  I've also read the evidence given by shepherds who would like to protect their flocks from getting skin parasites and fly larvae.

Oh, oh, and tell me all about how silk is cruel, because they boil the poor widdle bugsies inside the cocoons!  Please!

Maybe then you can move on to angora rabbits, and tell me how traumatized and mistreated they are, despite the fact that I've seen bunnies sitting calmly in someone's lap while they are spun -from-.

In short- vegan knitters who feel the need to tell everyone else how wrong they are for using animal fibers, please, bite my wool-trousered ass. 

This concludes my latest round of "grrrrr, Vegans!"
Tuesday, not to be outdone by Monday, decided to begin the hardcore succkage about an hour and a half before it ended. That was when I went downstairs to feed the chinchillas before bed, and discovered all of the girls out frolicking in the basement. When I went to move the cage to ziptie it back together, I saw one of our white girls, Coriander, lying in the corner.

I honestly thought when I picked her up that she was dead. She was utterly limp, a bit cold, and just..lifeless. Then she moved a bit, so I took her upstairs to Michelle and we tried to see what might be wrong. Near as we could tell, she had taken a jump from either the top of the cage or the bookshelf, fallen, and probably broken her back. She wasn't moving her hind legs at all, or her tail, and didn't seem to be in pain.

We rushed her up to the emergency vet in Springfield, who was surprised to see a chinnie. Busy night there- a woman before us had brought in her dog, who I think had just had a stroke, and someone right after us brought in a cat.

As we sat in the exam room with her, Cori seemed to get a little more energetic, moving around a bit in my arms and trying to pull herself along. When we set her on the table, both the vet and I saw her move her back legs, or at least her left one. She went off for x-rays, and nothing was broken- not the leg, the spine, or anything else. The vet said it might have been shock that temporarily paralyzed her, gave her some pain meds, and told us to take her and the films to our regular exotic vet tomorrow. While we waited, we were able to get her to drink some water on her own out of a cup, and she peed and, in typical chinchilla fashion, pooped 3 or 4 times.

The shock seems to have worn off almost completely now, and the dope they gave her seems to have helped her stay calm and not fuss. Michelle and I, despite a midnight run to the vet in our pj's, are just so happy that she didn't have to be put to sleep. We might snap out of OUR shock sometime soon too. It was so heartbreaking to be sitting there holding an animal that you've touched every day since she was born, and worry that there won't be anything you can do to fix things for her.

Now it's 2 in the morning on Wednesday, and we're still down a chinnie (Katchi out in the basement somewhere...), and we both feel so sick with stress that we can't sleep. But Coriander seems to be holding her own, has eaten, had more water, and is settled into a desecrated yarn bin for her hospital room. We'll take her to see Dr. F, the exotics vet, in the morning, just to make sure she hasn't dislocated her hip or something weird. Hell, female chins have 2 uterii, why not some kind of weird ability to recover from paralysis? (Though I really think it more likely that she was just in deep shock.)

So yeah. Tuesday. Fuck you.

Shittiest Week Ever
++++ 2 ++++

---- 0 ----

I know some of you are dog owners, so I thought I'd pass this info along.

Diamond Brand Pet Food Recalled

It looks like a regional brand, but these are the affected products:
Read more... )

This is the cutest thing in the world.

No, don't argue. It is. Except maybe for the dog who adopted the deer.

Expressions of absolute love between animals have always made me a little wobbly. (Not -that- kind of love, people.)

I think I need an icon.
Anyone who knows me for more than an hour knows that I love animals. I support animal charities (though I refuse to support PETA), I've worked with rescue programs, I raised hand fed birds, the whole nine yards.

Some recent experiences have only driven home the reasons that I stopped working with the rescue groups in AZ. Nice to know that the holier than thou attitude is flung far and wide, and it's been perfected here in VA.

We went to the local shelter in Alexandria to see about adopting a couple guinea pigs that had been listed on their site. So, okay, I know the adoption process is set up to make sure the animals wind up in a good home, and I'm fine with that. Every adult in the household had to be listed, and sign off saying that they were fine with the piggies in the house. Stanley hadn't come with us, so that meant a second trip. Then after that, we had to schedule a home visit. A HOME VISIT. For two guinea pigs. (I don't think one animal has more inherent worth than another, and I do see the point of having someone come out to the house for a dog or cat to make suggestions about the environment, even if I do feel it's intrusive.) When the person came to the house, we sat around for an hour while she gave us flyers about feeding, cages, and care, and then proceeded to basically read to us off the flyers. Okay...and why, when we were at the shelter for the second time, could we not have just sat down with someone right there, answered all their questions, gotten our lecture, and taken the piggies home? She wasn't doing an inspection of any kind...she only came to the house to give us our lecture. And she didn't even bring the piggies with her, so we had to make a -3rd- trip to the damn shelter. The entire process took over 2 weeks. The people at the shelter were nice enough, but every question was jumped on, every answer was treated with that same disdainful "well, I suppose you COULD do it that way" attitude that seems to permeate animal rescue groups.

Guys? Reality check here. You CANNOT KEEP THEM ALL. Even though I'm SURE that I could never POSSIBLY be as good a trainer, pick out food and shelter as well as you, love the animal in just the right way, like you, care for it enough, or convert enough of my house into a giant Habitrail, I am a decent human being, and I'm experienced and knowledgeable in the care of small animals. The purpose of a rescue group, or so I always thought, was to find a stable and loving home for an animal in need. I find the scare tactics, the subtle bullying, and the interminable adoption process to be off-putting and scary, and can only imagine what it must be like for a family with children, who just want to incorporate an animal into their family and wind up feeling like they've volunteered to be questioned by the Spanish Inquisition.

We did, in the end, get the piggies. I'm sure that since we eat meat in the house near them, we are on the verge of giving them horrible psychological issues. Please don't tell anyone from the welfare league, because I'm not sure I could deal with the trauma of being declared an unfit home.

While we were in there for the second time, there was a family waiting to fill out an adoption application for a second dog. They had brought their dog in with them to meet and play with the dog they were considering adopting, to make sure they got along okay. I thought that was pretty awesome, vs. adopting and then dealing with the fallout of two pets meeting and hating one another.

Their dog was a pit mix of some kind. She was -beautiful-. Well trained, impeccably groomed, calm as anything in a shelter full of kids and strange smells and other animals. She obviously adored her family, and the feeling was clearly mutual, because she was a really healthy pup. Now, I'll admit that the guy filling out the application looked like a little thug- exactly the kind of guy you'd imagine owning a pit. But he was at the shelter. He didn't go to a backyard breeder and drop money on a dog. The family chose to come to a rescue group and adopt a mutt because they wanted another dog.

Apparently, that wasn't good enough for the lady at the counter. First she asked them why they wanted another dog. Then it was a host of questions about diet, how much money they expected to spend on the dog's care in the course of a year, etc. Fairly standard, except that when he said he didn't know about the money, she jumped all over his shit. He didn't say he -wasn't- going to spend the money, he just asked her to help him figure out what was reasonable. Who the hell sits down once a month and calculates what they've spent on their dog? You just spend the money as it comes up, and you move on. Again, I refer you to the perfectly healthy, obviously well cared for dog that they brought in with them.

Next it was environment. They said the current dog was with them 24/7. When asked about outside time, they said they didn't have a fenced yard, but they had a runner set up for the current dog, and would put up another for the new one. The lady then proceeds to lecture them about how people come by and steal dogs from the yard, and oh, she didn't know how they'd gotten their current dog, but it might have been a situation like that.

She implied that they'd stolen their dog. Excuse me? I KNOW that there are people out there who neglect and hurt animals. I've seen them, I've seen the animals they leave behind at shelters and on the curb. But the idea that someone from a shelter, someone who is ostensibly trying to place an animal in a good home, would spend so much time trying to intimidate a potential owner? It's sick. And it's exactly what I see, every time I see an adoption group at Petsmart, or an animal rehab person screaming at someone who was kind enough to try and help an injured animal.

I -know- that sometimes ignorance can make a situation worse, but you know what? Again with the bullying, intimidation, and holier-than-thou. Telling someone off for trying to help an animal isn't going to help in the long run. Providing information, or suggesting that they call a vet, that's useful. Telling someone that rehabbers hate it when other people interfere is just...stupid. Rehabbers aren't everywhere, they can't find every injured animal, and treating someone like -they- were the one who injured it and implying that if the animal dies it's somehow their fault for daring to try, is counter-productive to the goal of helping animals. If I find an animal I don't have experience with, or I know is injured, I call my vet. She either gives me instructions on how to care for it, or has me bring it in. Most importantly, she doesn't treat me like crap because I'm not a licensed rehabber and I had the audacity to interfere.

I know that there are lots of people out there who think animals are disposable, or a nuisance, or that it's okay to hurt them. But I also truly believe that there are a lot of good people in the world, who want to help animals, who can and will provide safe, loving homes for them, and who are being scared away by people on a power trip.

I think the ego involved is astounding, and that a lot of people are getting turned away not because they would be bad pet owners, but because a very strange power dynamic has managed to sneak into a lot of rescue groups. There has to be a happy medium somewhere, and it sure as hell doesn't involve treating every potential pet owner like a criminal.

(ETA: I know some of the people on my friends list work with rescue groups. This post is not in ANY way directed at you. I have never worked or interacted with your groups, and know nothing about the dynamics or adoption process you work with. This is based entirely on my own experiences working with groups in Arizona and Virginia.)

December 2015



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