So here's something that I found quite unbelievable - HRM's animal control reunited a lost dog with his rightful owners. Maybe there are white lights at the end of dark tunnels. Do you remember the dog "Champ" who went missing on August 19th - his parents were from New Brunswick, visiting Dartmouth and the dog got out of a backyard - and his owners looked everywhere but had to return home to New Brunswick without finding their dog - so they posted to Kijiji, called Animal Control, the SPCA - did everything they could to get the word out about their little missing dog. I even put a post on my blog about it - but nothing happened. And I said in my post "if you know of anyone who's recently adopted a dog who looks like this - please tell them about this posting, and show them the photos - her family are missing her like crazy"
Well as it turned out - that is what happened. Here is what the Kijiji posting her owners wrote this week -
We have Champ Home!! Thank You!
Wanted to let those of you who were in contact with us about our lost dog that we have her home!!
Seven weeks ago we were on vacation in Nova Scotia and our dog ran away from Dorothea Drive in Dartmouth. We have been posting ads here on kijiji looking for her and we have heard from so many of you saying you were watching out her for our Champ for us. We got a call yesterday from Animal Services that they had our dog! We do not know a lot of detail but apparentyly someone had claimed her for their own and after an investigation they were able to determine that she was our dog and they picked her up from the home. Thank you so much to all who were helping us, special thank you to who ever made HRM Animal Services aware of our dog being in this person's home and a big Thank You to HRM Animal Services for not closing and giving up on our file. Champ made the trip from Dartmouth back home to Oromocto, NB last night. My family is so happy to have her home as is she!!
Aren't happy endings fabulous!
Now from the fabulous to the sublimely ridiculous - this photo is Janet Chernin's hard fought for and long awaited permit to operate the first and only legal in-home doggy day care in the Halifax Regional Municipality peninsula. The fight that took so long it's got its own category on this blog. Do you see anywhere on here where it says that it's a permit to operate an in home doggy day care?
Where else but from the Halifax Regional Municipality's bureaucrat will you receive a document that tells you what you are by telling you everything THAT YOU ARE NOT.
What Janet Wilma Chernin does NOT OPERATE or HAVE is a Building Permit - her piece of paper is NOT a building permit. It does NOT permit construction activity. NOT more than 12 dogs, outdoor activity PROHIBITED,and then one small line "to operate a pet care facility pursuant to agreement no 01095" - and it's in reference to what this thing actually is - which is an "Occupancy Permit". But talk about the double speak.
This piece of paper really is something that you want to spend four years fighting for, and now get nicely laminated so that you can put it in a frame and hang proudly on your wall, isn't it? So that you can look at it and say - "this is my doggy day care licence" - it says right here that I've got my doggy day care licence from the city - nice and clear - I'm clearly legal now, with no loop holes that the City can jump out of. Thanks HRM!
So maybe now we'll go on to the yummy stuff - Geocities - the free web hosting service from Yahoo is closing down at the end of this month - and I've been so lazy over the years that there's been a few pages on my Charlie loves Halifax site that I've left on Yahoo and not transferred over to my server that I actually pay money for - so the last week or so I've been madly moving the pages over - a couple of the pages are one that I have that are a large amount of kong filling recipes, which maybe some readers might be interested in - that page is at http://charlieloveshalifax.ca/kong_stuffing.html if you are a dog owner who is a partaker in the past time of kong filling.
As well - I have a page that I call "dog poetry" for the more hoy folloy, with a particular focus on Michael Ondaatje - who I am particularly fond of - but there's some other good stuff there too - that page is at http://charlieloveshalifax.ca/dog_poetry.html - you'll also find these super dog haiku's
I love my human;
Thus I perfume myself with
This long-rotten squirrel.
I lie belly-up
In the sunshine, happier than
You ever will be
Today I sniffed
Many dog behinds-I celebrate
By kissing your face.
I sound the alarm!
Paper boy-come to kill us all
Look! Look! Look! Look! Look!
I sound the alarm!
Garbage man-come to kill us all
Look! Look! Look! Look! Look!
I lift my leg and
Whiz on each bush. Hello, Spot-
Sniff this and weep!
How do I love thee?
The ways are numberless as
My hairs on the rug.
My human is home!
I am so ecstatic I have
Made a puddle.
There's more - you should go have a look.
So where shall we go next - to the disquieting stuff? That's what this long thing is to the left. It's an editorial today in the Chronicle Herald from Scott Millar, Chair of the "Advocacy Committee" at the NS SPCA - and it's got - and this is only my opinion, some troubling ideas in it, especially for an organization that is still trying to find it's way. If this is the way the NS SPCA wants to go - I'd say it's going to lose a few people.
I would have no problems with it if it was written by "Scott Millar, law student" or "Scott Millar, animal activist" - but "Scott Millar - chair of the Advocacy Committee, Nova Scotia SPCA" - implicitly says that the NS SPCA agrees with the things he says in the editorial.
I also say that because the president of the SPCA - Sean Kelly, who I have quite a bit of affection for, posted to Twitter today - http://bit.ly/EB1QnOur Advocacy committee at work :)- which gives his words even more sway.
I'm not saying this because I think rodeos are good, or that I think the rodeo should come to Halifax - what I have a problem with is some of the things Mr. Millar said in his editorial, and he was saying those as a representative of the NS SPCA - and as a member of the NS SPCA - he was certainly not representing my views - and I have a problem with that.
I believe Mr. Millar went so far even as to be racist about people from our region when he said -
"Rodeo has no place in Nova Scotia’s cultural heritage. We are a people proud of our attachment to the land and the wilderness, and to our own cultural traditions. Fortunately, our province offers a wealth of opportunities for those seeking entertainment. Want to get some exercise and see wildlife in its natural habitat? Hike Kejimkujik or the Cape Breton Highlands. Want to connect with your cultural history? Visit the Acadian Village or the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic."
Has Mr. Millar moved us all back to the 19th century when everyone in the Maritimes were fishermen? How does he know what my cultural history is? I personally have no idea what my cultural history is, so how would he know? My father is from Ontario and was from a family of farmers - they all still are, and my mother is from Halifax, but she never talked about her past - so fucked if I know what my cultural history is. I could certainly be a poseur, but I'd rather just go walk the dogs.
I also have to say that I love going to the Maritime Fall Fair when it's out at Exhibition Park and seeing the cows and the horses and watching the kids come in from around the province and show their goats and their chickens - and I get to look at the cows that I know are going to have the milk sucked out of them that I am going to drink and see the cows that are going to be killed that I'm going to eat. I think it's neat - and it's real.
I've written about meat and eating and cows and dog meat tons of times here - and there's any many opinions about it as there are people - and none of it is going away and all we can do is to try and lessen the suffering of all of us sentient beings while we are alive a little bit (in my opinion) - and also in my opinion, that's what the NS SPCA is there for - not for vitriole like this editorial today. Sorry, Scott and Sean. Editorials like today aren't going to do too much - I did google the topic though and came up with a pretty good article about the problems with the Calgary Stampede and what other SPCA's across the country are doing - and what they seem to be doing - IS to try and lessen the pain of the animals in the rodeo while they're in town, which sounds pretty sensible to me.
The best article I found was at Canada.com and it said things like -
"The Calgary Humane Society is responsible for enforcing the Alberta Animal Protection Act at all Stampede events. And while they oppose the event, said Amos, that means making certain there's adequate food, shelter, water, and veterinary care for all the animals involved. This year, there has yet to be an infraction, she said, but that doesn't mean there aren't threats to the animals' lives. "(During races), there's nothing we can really do to prevent any injuries or deaths," said Amos. "We have regular meetings before the Stampede starts and make certain recommendations to minimize stress." This year, the CHS suggested that the tracks used in chuckwagon races be softened to make it easier for horses to run. The Stampede implemented the measure.
Really, how can Calgary get so many things right all the time. It just boggles the mind - and I didn't even do that quote on purpose so that it was Calgary in the quote - it just happened that way.
But now that leads me on to what the SPCA is (should) really be about - and that's the animals - and all this week there's been an exhibit at the Anna Leonowens gallery at 1891 Granville Street in downtown Halifax - and it's a photography show of all of the dogs that have been at the Dartmouth shelter in the last year. It's pretty neat - 2 photography students from NSCAD have been taking the Petfinder photos of the dogs - with a neutral backdrop and studio lighting - to show how beautiful shelter dogs are - and this week they've been showing the photos. Last Friday was the opening, and tomorrow and Saturday are the last days before the show closes.
I called the gallery today because I want to make sure I get there before it closes and the gallery is only open Thursday and Friday from 11am to 5pm and Saturday from 12pm to 4pm.
I cannot believe how long it took me to write this post...