Animals

Photo from Emma Clark Library

As part of  The Great Give Back, a Suffolk Cooperative Library System initiative to provide opportunities for library patrons to participate in meaningful, service-oriented activities, Emma S. Clark Memorial Library, 120 Main St., Setauket will hold a Pet Food Drive from Sept. 27 to Oct. 16. They will be collecting new, unopened pet food (both canned and dry) in the Library lobby. All are welcome to donate (residents or non-residents) during Library hours. For more information, call 631-941-4080.

MEET ZEUS!

This week’s shelter pet is Zeus, a 3-year-old male Golden Retriever. This handsome boy was rescued from a Florida shelter by a local family and then surrendered to the Smithtown Animal Shelter. He is a sweet and affectionate dog that craves human contact and company. 

Zeus clearly lacked proper socialization in his early years. He is a timid and jumpy and needs a strong, loving and experienced leader to help him gain confidence so he may enjoy the world around him. Because of his fears, the shelter would prefer him to go to a home with no children or other pets. 

Zeus is also currently being treated for heartworm disease. He will only be available for foster or foster to adopt until his treatment is complete and he is cleared to be neutered.

This poor boy has been failed in the past; let’s write him the happy ending he deserves!

If you are interested in meeting Zeus, please call ahead to schedule an hour to properly interact with him in a domestic setting, which includes a dog run and a Meet and Greet Room.  

The Smithtown Animal & Adoption Shelter is located at 410 Middle Country Road, Smithtown. Shelter operating hours are currently Monday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Sundays and Wednesday evenings by appointment only). For more information, call 631-360-7575 or visit www.smithtownanimalshelter.com.

Yoo Hoo

MEET YOO HOO!

This week’s shelter pet is Yoo-Hoo,  a Female Domestic Medium Hair Mix at the Smithtown Animal Shelter who is estimated to be ten-to-twelve years old. She was found abandoned, thin and matted as part of a feral cat colony. Her unique coloring and stunning green eyes are hard to resist. Yoo-Hoo loves to snuggle and hang out in the sun. She has a hyperthyroid condition, but this can be managed through a prescription diet and vet visits twice a year. Yoo-Hoo would do well in a home with children and other animals that respect her personal space.

If you are interested in meeting Yoo- Hoo, please call ahead to schedule an hour to properly interact with her in a domestic setting, which includes a Meet and Greet Room.

Currently, there are a variety of male and female cats & kittens available to adopt or foster. If you are looking for a fun loving, yarn tossing ball of love, stop by the Kitten Nursery or the Cat Condos at the Smithtown Animal Shelter and find a PURR-fect soulmate or two!

All of the felines at the Shelter are current on vaccines and have received a full workup (blood work, Feline HIV & Leukemia tested, physical exam etc.) by a board certified Veterinarian.

The Smithtown Animal & Adoption Shelter is located at 410 Middle Country Road, Smithtown. Shelter operating hours are currently Monday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Sundays and Wednesday evenings by appointment only). 631-360-7575, www.smithtownanimalshelter.com.

MEET WILLOW!

Willow is a spry 7-year-old female cat who was recently diagosed with diabetes and needs insulin injections twice a day. Her 97-year-old owner can no longer take care of her and now she is looking for a new loving home.

Willow loves catnip and small and medium dogs but does not like many other cats. Her front paws are declawed so she needs to be an indoor cat. The former owner’s daughter has offered to supplement the cost of insulin for the first year. 

Do you have space in your heart and home for Willow? She brings love and great companionship.  Please contact Stephanie at [email protected]

Pogo. Photo from Smithtown Animal Shelter

MEET POGO!

This week’s shelter pet is Pogo, a male Domestic Shorthair currently up for adoption at the Smithtown Animal Shelter. Pogo is estimated to be about 5 years old and came to the shelter as a stray. He is a rear leg amputee and a bit on the shy side. This sweet boy would thrive best in a quiet home with a warm lap to curl up in. He is neutered, microchipped and up to date on his vaccines. 

If you are interested in meeting Pogo, please call ahead to schedule an hour to properly interact with him in a domestic setting, which includes a Meet and Greet Room.  

The Smithtown Animal & Adoption Shelter is located at 410 Middle Country Road, Smithtown. Shelter operating hours are currently Monday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Sundays and Wednesday evenings by appointment only). 631-360-7575, www.smithtownanimalshelter.com.

METRO photo

By Matthew Kearns, DVM

A diagnosis of separation anxiety in  understanding the cause of our dog’s behaviors can make it much simpler to treat. Treating separation anxiety requires patience and persistence to work. There are always steps backwards (even if you are doing everything correctly) and treatment is lifelong.  

Modifying behavior is a very simple concept: reward the good behavior, and ignore the bad behavior. This is easier said than done. Coming home to a chewed/scratched up door or a nice smelly present after a long day at work would make anyone lose their cool. However, dogs live in the moment and do not understand why they are being scolded for something after the fact. They only understand that they were happy to see us when we arrived but we started yelling at them. This is not only ineffective, but also been can exacerbate the problem. We have to start with behavioral modification, or changing our dog’s behavior by changing our behavior. How can we do that?

METRO photo

Leave the room: Start by leaving your dog alone for very short periods of time and reward them for staying calm while you are gone. A short period of time refers to a minute or less in the beginning. Before leaving, put them in a relaxed sit-stay position: initially tell your dog to sit and, after they sit, tell them to stay before leaving the room. If the dog follows, do not scold them, just start over. If they do the sit-stay successfully, give them a treat when you come back. Don’t get frustrated if you are having little success. It can take weeks of training every day to try and get your dog to stay even for a minute when the condition is severe.  

Change your schedule: Change up any clues that might let the dog know you are going out.  If it is at set times, then mix up when you leave (even if it is for 15 minutes to get your dog used to being left alone).  

Crate training: Crate training can start at any age but is best started when a puppy is very young (ideally, we start between eight and 12 weeks of age) and a dog with separation anxiety will not always adapt. Crate training (if instituted at the appropriate age and used correctly) is designed more as a “safety area” when you are out of the house. If one is going to try to crate train an adult dog with separation anxiety, reach out to a certified trainer to help you through the process. Confining a dog that already has a nervous breakdown every time you leave will set you up for disaster. You don’t want to come home to a broken crate and possibly an injured dog.  

Medications: In severe cases, medications are used in conjunction with treatment.  There are medications to use on an everyday basis (maintenance medications), as well as medications to use during periods of crisis. Medications, when used appropriately, are not designed to cure the problem, but rather help to treat in conjunction with behavioral modification. The goal is medication and behavioral modification initially. Then wean off medication and continue behavioral modification alone.

I hope this sheds some light on the condition separation anxiety and offers solutions to a very stressful problem.   

Dr. Kearns practices veterinary medicine from his Port Jefferson office and is pictured with his son Matthew and his dog Jasmine. 

Blaze. Photo from Town of Smithtown

MEET BLAZE!

Blaze is an eight-to-nine year old male Pit Mix who was rescued by Smithtown Animal Control Officers when he was found abandoned and left in a cage at Blydenburgh Park. He is now patiently waiting at the Smithtown Animal Shelter for his furever home.

Blaze is an extremely loyal guy who is very protective of the people he trusts. He is energetic, playful, and loving. His favorite activities include swimming in the kiddie pool, going on walks, and playing with toys. He is also a big eater and a big kisser! Blaze should be the only pet in an adult only home, and any potential owners should have experience with his breed.

He is neutered, microchipped and up to date on his vaccines.

If you are interested in meeting Blaze, please call ahead to schedule an hour to properly interact with him in a domestic setting, which includes a Meet and Greet Room,  dog runs, and a Dog Walk trail. Family Pet Meet and Greets and at home interactions are also welcome and an integral part of the adoption process.

The Smithtown Animal & Adoption Shelter is located at 410 Middle Country Road, Smithtown. Shelter operating hours are currently Monday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Sundays and Wednesday evenings by appointment only). 

For more information, call 631-360-7575 or visit www.smithtownanimalshelter.com

Foster Opportunity:

If you have no other pets or young children at home, and are looking for a way to serve your community, please consider signing up to be a foster. Foster parents provide temporary care for cats, kittens, and dogs in their own homes. Some animals need as little as two weeks of care, while others may need care for extended periods of time.

Download the Foster Application at:

https://www.smithtownny.gov/DocumentCenter/View/4325/Foster-Application

 

 

Photo by Tom Caruso

SPLISH-SPLASH

Tom Caruso of Smithtown captured this scene at Frank Melville Memorial Park in Setauket on Aug. 7. He writes, ‘I was walking around the Setauket Millpond when I heard a lot of splashing. I found several Canada Geese flapping their wings on the water and caught this one spraying water everywhere. It was quite a sight.

Send your Photo of the Week to [email protected]

 

John Turner points to a flock of Common Nighthawks passing overhead. Photo by Patricia Paladines

By John L. Turner

Beginning on Friday, August 27th, the Four Harbors Audubon Society will kick off its fifth season of the “Stone Bridge Nighthawk Watch” at Frank Melville Park in Setauket. Each night participants will meet on the north sidewalk of the Stone Bridge (where Main Street crosses the water) and count Common Nighthawks as they pass overhead during their fall migration.

The Watch begins at 5:30 p.m. and concludes at dusk each night, when observers typically see bats emerge to forage for insects over the ponds. Sometimes participants are rewarded with a dozen or so nighthawks feeding on aerial insects low over the ponds before it gets too dark.

Nighthawks, related to whip-poor-wills, are highly migratory birds that leave the Northern hemisphere in the autumn as their insect prey wanes, ending up a few weeks later in the Amazon River basin where they overwinter. Unfortunately, as with so many bird species the Common Nighthawk is declining and the Nighthawk Watch was established by the Four Harbors Audubon Society as an effort to gather more specific long-term data about its numbers and population trends. 

Participants often see other birds species such as Bald Eagle, Peregrine Falcon, Great Blue and Green Herons, Belted Kingfisher, many types of songbirds and mute swans. The Watch runs through to October 6. Please join us. The only items recommended for you to bring along are binoculars and a healthy curiosity about the natural world!

Frank Melville Memorial Park is located at 1 Old Field Road, Setauket. For more information, visit www.4has.org.