By: Aspen Willard
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals® (ASPCA) has designated April to be National Prevention of Cruelty Month. As a dog, this hits very close to home for me, personally, since I came from an abusive environment where I was neglected and mistreated. It was only because of a pet foundation called Big Dogs Huge Paws, that I was saved and adopted by the Willards. My new family is compassionate to me not just in April, but every single day of the year.
With me as an inspiration, the Dr. Willard brand has released a brand new, holistic line of products for dogs. Dr. Willard’s Natural Restorative Pet Care® Kit honors pets’ nutritional and care needs by offering products made with natural ingredients and no harmful toxins. Furthermore, they solidified their commitment to compassionate pet care by donating $.25 cents from every bottle sold to animal rescue charities, such as Big Dogs Huge Paws.
It is very important to be vigilant about treating our furry friends in a loving and caring way. The media constantly reports horrifying cases of animal abuse, but most never even get brought to light. The ASPCA reports that an animal gets abused every 60 seconds in this country, and dogs get most of the brunt. Almost every state has strict laws about animal abuse, making it a felony charge. It is up to humans to look for signs of animal abuse that may be happening at the houses of friends and neighbors, and reporting any suspicious activities. Dogs cannot speak up for themselves, so they need us to protect them. It is important to remember that not all abuse is purposeful; it can come in the form of neglect, too. The Humane Society provides these tips to spot poor treatment of animals.
Animal Neglect – While there is nothing worse than an owner viciously hurting his or her pet on purpose, improper treatment can include neglect, as well. Report animal neglect if you notice any of the following happening to a pet:
- Abandonment – There are many cases of owners simply leaving their pets without any care, either due to a long vacation, or a move. Pets can die without food and water, which is why it is imperative to intervene in this situation.
- No Medical Care – Some owners don’t inspect their dogs, or simply choose not to provide them with proper medical care. If you see a pet with “untreated wounds…emaciation, scabs, and hair loss,” he or she can be experiencing neglect.
- Hoarding – This neglect involves too many animals in one space, which prevents the owner from properly taking care of the pets.
- Chains – If you see a dog that is constantly on a chain, that poor animal is victim to animal abuse. It is unhealthy for the pet’s mental and physical state to be on a chain without a break.
Animal Violence – Animal violence is often easier to notice than neglect. If you hear or see someone attacking a pet, do something about it! Listen for verbal abuse to animals, or pay attention to a dog’s coat and overall appearance to notice signs of improper behavior.
If you do notice neglect or abuse that is happening to a pet, you need to report it. Don’t try to address the pet owner directly as that can put you in danger. Different states have their own organizations that deal with claims of animal abuse, which can include animal control agencies or local shelters. A good strategy to try is to research animal laws in your home state, and find local help. The ASPCA, along with the Michigan State University College of Law’s Animal Legal & Historical Center, has provided an online resource where visitors can find animal cruelty laws pertaining to their states.
Once you report animal abuse, and an investigation occurs, pets that have been mistreated will usually be placed in animal shelters. The ASPCA states that over seven and a half million pets get placed in rescue shelters every year, with more than half of that number being dogs. Unfortunately, while 2.7 million of them get adopted, the same amount gets euthanized every year.
What can you do to celebrate National Prevention of Cruelty Month? If you are considering adding a furry friend to your household, make sure to adopt one from an animal shelter versus buying one from a pet store or a breeder. If you are not looking for a new pet right now, support animals by donating to animal rescues. Your help can go a long way in providing shelter, food and medical care for lost or neglected pets.
A great organization to consider supporting is Big Dogs Huge Paws, which saved my life. This rescue focuses on giving “big” dogs, such as Great Danes, Great Pyrenees, Newfoundlands, Saint Bernards, Mastiffs (All Types), Irish Wolfhounds, and Scottish Deerhounds, a chance for a better life. They take in, feed and house rescues, and then go a step further to work with the adoptive family and medical practitioners, veterinarians and behaviorists to create a smooth transition to the new home.
To support this and other animal foundations while purchasing the best possible products for your pets, check out our new line of pet products. Every purchase will send a portion of the profits to these rescues. Our line includes a two-month supply of:
- Dr. Willard’s Vibrant Pet Water Drops® (8 oz.) enhances dogs’ overall nutrition and general health in a simple, safe and effective way by optimizing nutrient absorption and enhancing cellular function. Dr. Willard’s Vibrant Pet Water Drops® contain no artificial colors, flavors, parabens, phthalates or petrochemicals; are cruelty free; and help improve dogs’ overall hydration and nutritional benefits, keeping dogs healthy and vibrant. By adding the secret catalyst in the Dr. Willard’s® patented formula to pets’ clean drinking water, Dr. Willard’s Vibrant Pet Water Drops® boost water’s biological functions to help with digestion, nutrient absorption, behavior and performance. This means that dogs will get more vitamins from the same amount of food they consumed before.
- Dr. Willard’s Rejuvenating Skin and Coat Spray® (8 oz.) is made with the finest natural ingredients; restores moisture and beauty to the skin and coat of dogs; and relieves discomfort from a variety of conditions such as hot spots, scrapes, burns, abrasions and cuts. This topical application has no artificial colors, flavors, beans, phthalates or petrochemicals and is cruelty free. Dr. Willard’s Rejuvenating Skin and Coat Spray should be sprayed directly on the affected areas one to four times daily, or as needed.
- Dr. Willard’s Soothing Aloe Gel for Pets® (8 oz.) naturally moisturizes dogs’ skin, helps restores dogs’ coats and relieves itching caused by a variety of skin irritations. The gel, which is made with natural ingredients, helps alleviate some problems associated with burns, cuts, wounds and other skin disorders. It can be topically applied to dogs’ coats and skin. Dog owners should place a dime or quarter size amount of on the affected area of the dog and/or use as a general moisturizer.
Animal compassion is just as important as human compassion. Dogs and other pets are men’s best friends and they trust us to provide them with the best possible care. Share your stories about animal compassion on our Facebook or Twitter pages.