Archive for August, 2014|Monthly archive page

“Tails & Ales” is back at Broad Ripple Brewpub!

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

“Tails & Ales” at the Broad Ripple Brewpub resumes on Thursday, September 11. Grab your friends and come feast on fantastic food and beverages while visiting with volunteer animal rescue groups and great adoptable pets!

Located at 842 E. 65th Street right by the Monon Trail, the Brewpub offers British-inspired cuisine and locally-brewed beers as well as one of the largest dog-friendly outdoor seating spaces in the Village. In partnership with move to ACT, the Brewpub has graciously provided space for small, all-volunteer rescue groups to introduce adoptable animals to patrons in September and October. Different groups will be on hand from 6 to 9 p.m. on alternate Thursdays.

Adding to the fun this fall is the “Brew Pups Talent Contest”, in which the adoptable dogs can win much-needed prize money for their rescues.

Invite everyone you know to come enjoy a hearty sandwich, pizza, a vegetarian delight, or one of several unique beers while learning about the lifesaving work being done by these dedicated volunteer rescue groups. You just might meet your new best friend!

Who’s coming when:

September 11
• Every Dog Counts
• Waldo’s Muttley Crew
• IndyCLAW
• Greyhound Rescue
• Tails and Trails

September 25
• Chihuahua Rescue
• Lucky Dog Retreat
• Casa Del Toro
• Siamese Cat Rescue

October 9
• Every Dog Counts
• Waldo’s Muttley Crew
• Siamese Cat Rescue
• Forever Friends Great Dane Rescue
• Tails and Trails

October 23
• Chihuahua Rescue
• Lucky Dog Retreat
• Casa Del Toro
• IndyCLAW

Attention participating rescues!
This is a terrific opportunity to increase public awareness of your organization and boost support! Please be sure to send move to ACT a short description of your group by September 9. Include what you do, contact numbers, and any other information you’d like to share. We’ll use this to promote your rescue at Tails & Ales.

One voice for animals on the City-County Council

Thursday, August 14th, 2014


If you follow the mtA blog, you know we have repeatedly addressed the inadequate allocation of resources to Indianapolis Animal Care and Control.

A lone City-County Councilor, Zach Adamson, seems to be aware of the anemic level of funding for IACC. Expressing concern about the Ballard administration’s commitment of $5 million in tax dollars for infrastructure and traffic improvements on the IUPUI campus, Adamson said

“We don’t have enough money to make the city function at its barest minimum for things like Animal Care and Control and public safety and paving roads, but again we always seem to find these enormous amounts of money for things unrelated to the city.”

IUPUI is a private institution. The Ballard administration is asking for a tax increase to fund additional police officers. While the standard answer is always that “money from this fund can’t be used for that purpose,” the excuse is wearing thin.

Others have tried to focus attention on the deplorable conditions at IACC. In a letter to the editor of the Indianapolis Star in May, Ellen Robinson of FACE asked

“So why does Indianapolis continue to hang on to an outdated Animal Control structure? With the kind of turnover they’ve experienced, why aren’t our city leaders exploring other options?”

Robinson noted IACC’s severely outdated facility, its struggle to maintain adequate staffing, and the turnover of 10 administrators in 12 years. One might argue that IACC needs renovation considerably more than IUPUI’s Natatorium.

A million here, a million there

According to a WTHR news story, Adamson has also expressed concern about nearly $10 million in no-bid contracts already signed by the city for services related to the proposed criminal justice center, for which a developer hasn’t even been selected. The IBJ reports that figure is closer to $12 million.

“When we first found there was a contract for consulting fees to the tune of $700,000, everyone was shocked, and it’s even more shocking that wasn’t the largest, that was the smallest.”

Adamson also wondered why a separate company had been contracted to provide services that seem to be the developer’s responsibility.

No group of employees in city government deals with the stress (and volume) of life, death and disease like those at IACC. There will never be adequate budgeting for primary needs, such as IACC and public safety, as long as elected officials are driven by greed, self-enrichment, and a need to subsidize campaign contributors.

Zach Adamson is at least aware. Remember his name.

Compassion doesn’t have a price tag

Sunday, August 10th, 2014

Tampa Bay

Compassion is what drives most people involved in animal welfare. But at SPCA Tampa Bay, a lack of compassion contradicts the PR image the organization puts forth while trolling for donations. This example recently appeared in the Tampa Bay Times.

Last week, a suitcase was found floating in a St. Petersburg, FL canal. Inside was the battered body of a pit bull, but the story is not what you — or the police — expected.

The dog’s name was Beloved. She was the cherished pet of a disabled couple, who adopted her off the street when no one wanted her. Leashed and on a walk, Beloved had gotten loose and been killed by a hit-and-run driver. The distraught pair carried her body home and called SPCA/TB for help.

They were told it would cost $55 to pick up the dog.

The couple didn’t have $55. They attempted to give their precious pet a decent burial on the grounds of their apartment building, but the landlord said no. He told them to put their dog’s body in the trash dumpster.

Refusing to show so little respect for their beloved companion, the couple decided on a burial at sea using a suitcase they found in the dumpster. They wanted Beloved to rest in a place she had enjoyed in life, a canal near their home.

Given their circumstances, they did the best they could to honor the life of a pet they loved.

$55? Really? A nonprofit organization that allegedly exists to care for animals couldn’t waive their fee for two heartbroken people living on disability? Two people who treasured and mourned a lost pet?

The couple for whom Beloved was a family member were full of compassion. SPCA/TB, with its CEO making six figures, shows once again that it has none.

And the saddest irony: had the couple been able to pay the fee, their dog’s body still would likely have been dumped into the trash.

We hope potential donors will remember this story.

Pet owner, or pet parent?

Friday, August 8th, 2014

Words matter.

This blog has held several discussions about using euphemisms like “euthanasia” to mask the fact of animals being killed for space or convenience. A recent story about an aging Lab who made her way 30 miles home to owners who no longer wanted her prompted this thought:

Is there a difference between a pet OWNER and a pet PARENT?

We own things. Things don’t have feelings. Your car doesn’t know fear. Your furniture doesn’t feel pain. When you leave for a week, your house doesn’t get lonely and worry that it’s been abandoned.

Things are disposable. When a kitchen gadget breaks, we throw it away. We replace an appliance that costs too much to maintain. When a pair of jeans no longer fits, we donate it to Goodwill.

But when the baby cries all night, you don’t give her away the next morning. When your teenager breaks all the rules, you may want to lock him in his room until he’s 21, but instead you try to learn about adolescent behavior, take him to a counselor, and do all you can to help him become a responsible citizen. When your 8-year-old falls off the swing and breaks her leg, you rush her to the best medical care you can find.

That’s being a parent.

People who see themselves as pet parents may be more likely to view their pets as members of the family. Maybe a good question to add to adoption questionnaires would be “Do you see yourself as a pet owner, or a pet parent?”

And the rejected Lab? Her sad story has a happy ending!

Lipstick on a… well, you know

Thursday, August 7th, 2014


On July 17, Tampa Bay Times staff writer Anne Lindberg covered the opening of SPCA Tampa Bay’s new low-cost animal wellness clinic.

The clinic certainly does have the potential to benefit some animals. Yet against the backdrop of excessive spending on administrative salaries, animals being killed for failing improperly administered temperament tests, and empty kennels while other area shelters are bursting at the seams, it’s a very small step.

In this letter to the editor of the Tampa Bay Times, former SPCA/TB volunteer Joseph Ciccolini made that perspective crystal clear.

SPCA facility is window dressing

As someone who formerly volunteered at the SPCA for five years, I read with interest staff writer Anne Lindberg’s article. The SPCA Tampa Bay’s opening of a low-cost wellness clinic is akin to a brothel demonstrating its commitment to morality by hiring a priest and installing a confessional.

The SPCA’s primary purpose is to be a shelter for the animals in the community — at which it has failed miserably since 2012. Admissions by appointment — ostensibly to avoid casual surrenders — allows them to preselect the popular breeds, thus inflating adoption rates, while other breeds are euthanized or sent to kill shelters.

Dogs receive inadequate exercise and socialization. The SPCA canceled the Family Dog Trainer program (staffed almost entirely by volunteers), and thus the last chance at rehabilitation for many animals. The kennels and the surrounding grounds are often filthy.

The SPCA board of directors contains attorneys, bankers and accountants — and no veterinarians. If the SPCA wants to run for-profit and compete with local vets, they should forfeit their tax-exempt status and stop rattling their tin cup before donors.

Low-cost wellness is admirable, and some animals will certainly benefit. But all the lipstick on earth cannot pretty up the pig that SPCA Tampa Bay has become.

Joseph A. Ciccolini, St. Petersburg

move to ACT salutes the Tampa Bay Times for printing this insightful letter.

Addendum 3:40PM. The bankruptcy of Ms. Boden’s administration of the SPCA/TB speaks for itself in this sad account of a mentally disabled couple looking for help.

Just what SPCA Tampa Bay needs – more administrators

Friday, August 1st, 2014

A major outcry over animal deaths and empty kennels hasn’t gotten their attention, but apparently a drop in legacy donors and revenue that can compromise self-enrichment has. SPCA Tampa Bay has increased its already top-heavy administration with two new senior administrative staff: a Director of Mission Advancement and a Community Program Director.

The Director of Mission Advancement will provide “enhanced customer service for SPCA’s legacy donors and the process of planned giving” (translation: woo back longtime donors who have stopped giving because they recognize that their gifts are paying administrative salaries instead of caring for the animals). The Community Program Director will manage outreach initiatives, including children’s programs. Previously, these programs were handled with spectacular efficiency by the volunteers and staff that have been eliminated by the current regime.

The drop in revenue has come in part from a grassroots pushback by SPCA Tampa Bay Behind the Kennel Doors
This courageous group of former volunteers and true animal welfare advocates continues to shine a bright light on what’s actually happening in the current SPCA/TB administration, including the misallocation of donor revenue toward generous administrative salaries at the expense of the animals.

This message, created by Behind the Kennel Doors and soon to appear in the Pinellas County community, says it all.

SPCA (3)