It’s Monday, which means we’re taking a look at some of the cute critters at Austin Pets Alive! that need a home. Before we go into that, however, let’s take a moment to look at exactly what APA is and what they do.
Since 2008, Austin Pets Alive! has been dedicated to finding homes for unwanted pets while attempting to eliminate euthanasia at shelters altogether. In order to do this, APA will take in animals at other shelters that are scheduled to be put down due to overcrowding. This is why they always say that rescuing a pet from APA is like rescuing two – the one you take home and the one who takes its place at the shelter.
They’re also involved in a number of other programs designed to curb the pet population and find homes for animals that need it. Programs include the Dog Behavior Program, which provides free training for dogs rescued by the program, even after they’re adopted; the Barn Cat Program, designed to spay, neuter and find home for feral cats and kittens; the FeLV sanctuary, a shelter designed to curb the spread of feline leukemia; and the PASS program, which is designed to help unwanted pets find homes before they even arrive at a shelter. You can learn about all these programs and more here.
The pets we’re giving spotlight time today are just as lovable and friendly as any other. However, they do have special medical needs you don’t normally find with your typical pet. Because of this, they’re more in need of a home than the others in the shelter. If you’re a kind-hearted soul who doesn’t mind a challenge, the rewards are worth it.
Junior here in a handsome, seven year old Lab/Retriever mix. He appears to be house trained and has shown that he can fend for himself for extended periods of time.
That doesn’t mean he likes it, though, and will try to be near you as much as possible.
An active dog with a appetite for attention (it’s best that he’s the only pet in the home), Junior also has a congenital ankle condition known as “OCD” (no, that does not mean his ankle will make and remake the bed six time before leaving the house).
Right now, the condition is held in check by pain pills, but it may require surgery one day. While he loves to get out and run around, his ankle is better suited for hikes and long walks than runs and jogs.
Here’s a short video of Junior being adorable:
Steamer is a 12-year old Cocker Spaniel in the twilight of his life. That doesn’t mean, however, that he can’t provide a great companion for a family that can meet his special needs.
For starters, Steamer here is completely blind. He certainly seems like he couldn’t care less, however, as he’s willing to bonk his head one or twice against a wall until he figures out where he’s going. Feeding time is usually best done in a crate – it’s easy for him to remember where it is and makes him feel safe. He also barely has any teeth left, so small food works best for him. Finally, he’s also fairly hard of hearing (because of course he is) and requires ear drops twice a day – ear drops that are relatively inexpensive.
Despite his old-man issues, Steamer is still plenty spry and energetic. If you’re up for the challenge, this old man can still provide your family with years of happiness.
For all the details on Steamer, check out his profile page here.
Tony here is a shy and reserved domestic shorthair, but that doesn’t make him any less adorable. In fact, it probably makes him more.
The first thing any adoptive cat parent should know about Tony is that he is Feline Leukemia (FeLV) positive. It’s not nearly as serious as it sounds, but some precautions have to be taken. For starters, FeLV only affects cats, so children, dogs and others in the home are not at risk. Other cats, however, are. So, unless you have other cats that are already FeLV+, it’s important he is the only feline in the house. It’s also important he stay indoors at all time to prevent the spread of the disease to other cats.
Tony’s positives, however, outweigh the negatives. He’s extremely calm, always happy to curl up with a toy and take a nap. The first time you hold him, he’ll dig his head into your arm until he’s used to your scent, which is adorable beyond words. If an affectionate cat is what you want, you can’t go wrong with this orange cupcake.
Learn more about Tony at his APA profile page here.
If you’re looking to help a cat that can still play with your other felines, Winnie is your girl. She a little one at only seven pounds and she acts as sweet as she looks. Se’ll happily play with the other cats in your home – provided she’s not trying to take a nap. Let’s be honest, though – if someone woke you up from a refreshing nap to go chase a stupid ball, you’d be cranky, too.
Winnie has been tested for FeLV and all other feline health issues. She does, however, suffer from Manx Syndrome which causes her to be incontinent. She needs help expressing urine from her bladder a few times a day and if that sort of thing doesn’t gross you out, the folks at APA are more than happy to show you how to do it.
Winnie is worth a look and you can do so at her profile page here!
Next week, we’ll have a special All Big Dog edition of Furry Friends. In the meantime, check out the APA website and see how you can help humanely reduce Austin’s unwanted pet population.
Have you adopted a pet from APA? Care to share with us? Send us a photo of you and your new pal to our Twitter account, @Austin, and we’ll share it with our followers.
Story photos: Courtesy, Austin Pets Alive. Featured photo: Flickr user Will Folsom, creative commons licensed.