Hello, friends! It’s WTF Wednesday!  »

You guys, by the time you read this I will have ruined Valentine’s day. Yes, you read that right, Allen will have suffered on that holy day of love just as much as he suffers living with me every other day of the year. And this time I didn’t even mean to make it horrible! Damn you cold and flu season!

Around Thursday of last week I started suffering from the plague. I don’t know if you guys have ever had plague but it is pretty bad. Pustules and vomit everywhere, sweat upon brows, demonic screaming. And worse than the symptoms is Allen’s reaction. Instead of putting on some crazy plague-doctor outfit and trying to heal me he makes me a glass of lemon juice and tells me to take some Theraflu and stop telling people that I am dying because I will be disappointed when I actually do die and no one believes it. I asked him once how I would know if about that if I were already dead, but he just shook his head and told me to be quiet because the commercial break was over and The Simpsons was on. Real nice, buddy.

Since I am home alone I thought I would cheer you up with some things that will make you go aw and vomit rainbows. Then we could be twins, except I’m not vomiting rainbows, I’m vomiting the Boca Burgers that I ate for breakfast. I was also going to spend this time teaching myself how to play “video games” on my Omnichord but Allen has informed me he does not like that song. Allen ruins everything!

Here’s a kid who doesn’t ruin anything. Sophia is just chilling at the zoo when she sparks a personal connection with a lion. This is one of those “I don’t know if it’s adorable” moments because she is at a zoo, but she also seems to be communicating with the lion on a deep level, understanding his frustration at being behind a glass wall for the amusement of humans. I was almost hoping that this would turn into one of those Harry Potter moments and Sophia would somehow allow the lion out using only her mind and magical powers. I wish I had magical powers. If I had magical powers I wouldn’t be sick and also bored.

Let’s drop Sophia for a second, because I want to whine. You know what the worst part of being sick is? It’s your belief that you’re just going to chill at home and have a good time, but then you’re miserable and bored and nothing good is on TV and you don’t want to do any of your hobbies and you’re all alone an afraid that people think you’re faking. Fuck the flu.

You can’t trust anyone these days, not even animals. I know this video is meant to be a joke, but I fully believe that out companion animals can drive people away. When I was first dating Allen he almost broke up with me because Ms. Cleo hated him. She would be all nice with me, and then when I handed her over to Allen, she would try to eat him (she is like half his size, she is such a big rabbit) and he would curse in Spanish and ask if we could go to a room that was less dangerous. Now that Ms. Cleo lives with us, she and Allen are more friendly toward each other, but I would not put it past her to barrel out of her cage at some point, murder him, forge an intricate suicide note, and hide the body. All because she wants attention, not because she likes me.

Finally, if you’ve always wanted a beautiful piece of taxidermy on your life but could not resolve your interests in animal heads and your cruelty-free tendencies, I give you crochetdermy by artist Shauna Richardson. So cool, right? No animals are harmed and the pieces are beautiful. I feel that it’s kind of like fake meat. We have fake venison and fake squid and fake beef, so what is the innate harm in a fake animal mounted on one’s wall? Perhaps it is even a good anti-hunting conversation piece!

That’s all for this week. Send me links for next week, and have a safe Wednesday out there!

[Crochetdermy hare and baboons by Shauna Richardson. Plague doctor illustration from jaggitha via Flickr]


Pamper your pets at animal-only resorts and spas  »

I have long been an animal-lover who also enjoys traveling. As a result, I have often hired a petsitter or boarded my pets in kennels before heading out of town. Times have changed since I bid temporary farewell to my first pet, however; nowadays, pet resorts and spas are popping up all over, giving pet owners the chance to treat their companions to a little luxury while their humans are at play. As someone who thinks “roughing it” is a hotel without room service, I have been more than happy to board my spoiled pets in a little style.

The simple fact is that some of the pet resorts I’ve researched treat pets better than humans. Specialty services I’ve seen offered include “pawdicures,” and dog treadmills, where canines can get some indoor exercise. At first I didn’t think there was a difference between treadmills for humans and treadmills for dogs, but I was wrong. I hadn’t considered how much pets shed—my life is so covered in animal hair that it’s second nature to have a lint brush in my hand. Dog treadmills are equipped to handle inconveniences like that pet fluff and, like human treadmills, can be a great way for animals to get a little exercise, especially during inclement weather or if they’re unable to get outside for regular activity. I like knowing that my vacation means a vacation for my pets as well, and that they’ll be well looked after when I can’t take them for daily walks.

Some pf the amenities that pet spas offer are a little silly—limousine rides and spa treatments? I love my animals dearly, but my cat normally spends her day sleeping on top of a box lid, and my dog, although discouraged, drinks out of the toilet. I’m thankful for realistic-sounding folks like those at San Francisco’s Pet Camp. The services offered make me want to move to the West Coast so that my dear feline could experience the Cat Safari or my pup could romp with dogs his age and size at Dog Camp, as well as go for a dip in a heated indoor pool. It’s great to know that there are pet get-aways that treat animals well—probably so well that I would have trouble getting my buddies to come back home!

As people travel to see family at holidays and look for reliable and fun places where four-legged family members’ needs will be well looked after, I think they’ll increasingly turn to high-end pet-boarding. Amenities like catered meals, beds that look more luxurious than those humans sleep in, and fancy meals certainly make a gal want to vacation with her pets instead of boarding them.

Danielle Rhodes, who blogs on behalf of Sears and other prestigious brands, enjoys baking vegan brownies and volunteering a few times a month at her local animal shelter.

[photo by Jorge Quinteros via Flickr]


Bob Barker was right: spay and neuter, dammit!  »

Good news, you guys! Down from 20 million in the 1970s, fewer than 4 million unwanted cats and dogs will be euthanized this year, and many animal advocates believe that spaying and neutering has played the biggest role in the decrease. Four million is still 4 million too many, right?
Though we still have a long way to go, spaying and neutering has become the law in many states, counties and cities—some even require all shelter animals to be sterilized. Not only does this practice eliminate unnecessary killing, but it also makes pets easier to manage, less aggressive and healthier overall. A win-win-win! Spaying and neutering has definitely become safer and more affordable over the years; most low-cost shelters charging around $50 to neuter a male cat and $60 to spay a female cat, and about $150 for a female dog, and between $150 and $250 (depending on size) to neuter a male. In the long run, and for the lives of the animals, it’s totally worth it. So remember, “Help control the pet population. Have your pets spayed or neutered!” Thanks, Bob!

[Bob Barker image via scenestirz on Flickr; kitten image via jamesm.00001 on Flickr]


Adorable deaf pit bull needs a (SF Bay Area) foster home (or forever home!) by MONDAY  »

Her name is Jane and she is so fucking cute and sweet and awesome and if I wasn’t headed out of the country for a couple weeks, I’d totally foster her!! HOWEVER, you can save her! Details copied and pasted below because I got a plane to catch, fools!

Can you help this little girl? Here’s the scoop on this dog, who needs to be out of SF Animal Care & Control by Monday—or she will not get out alive.

Perhaps you can foster, or you know someone who can foster, or if not, please forward this as widely as possible to anyone who might be
interested in rescuing Betty/Jane. Fostering is easy, fun, and best part: no commitment! You just take care of this sweet girl like she’s your own until she’s adopted. EASY PEASY.

Pali Boucher of Rocket Dog Rescue has a CIP/hold on Betty/Jane but the hold is only good until Monday. Though Pali has posted on Facebook (see below for more details), so far no one has come forward to foster Betty.

This wonderful sweet pit bull was “declined” because she failed part of her test because the tester didn’t know she was partly deaf. She needs a miracle to get her out of ACC alive by Monday. For more info please contact SF/ACC or text Pali at (415) 756.8188. If you can’t reach Pali, you can always contact SFACC directly about her at (415) 554.6364. Ask for information about animal ID number A302563, a.k.a. Jane.

Thanks so much for anything you can do.


The power of language: “pets” vs. “companion animals”  »

The Journal of Animal Ethics may be a new publication, but it’s already raised an intriguing issue: What should we call other animals?

Domestic dogs, cats, bunnies, hamsters, snakes, and what-have-you shall henceforth be referred to as “companion animals” rather than “pets,” while the humans formerly known as “owners” ought to be called “human carers,” the academics say. To do otherwise is insulting, they say. While “critters” and “beasts” are understandably decried, even the term “wildlife” is not safe. WHAT. 

From the article:

We shall not be able to think clearly unless we discipline ourselves to use less than partial adjectives in our exploration of animals and our moral relations with them.

I agree that certain widespread language used to talk about animals (“crazy like a fox” and “eating like a pig”) could be both a symptom and a cause of animal abuse, and I call the cat who lives with me by her name, but come on, “wildlife”? Is this going too far? Is it not far enough? Is it just right? What do you think?

[photo from the Telegraph]


It’s Friday afternoon, which means time for this week’s link-o-rama!  »

Welcome to the very first Link-o-Rama of 2011! To celebrate, here’s a photo of our Megan Rascal’s perfect little princess Mitsy, featured last week on fuckyeahfelines, for obvious reasons.

And now, on to business! Let’s start with adorable animal stories to warm your heart on this chilly January day. Here is a very sweet video/memorial to recently deceased Taj, the elephant artist. Everything about it is beautiful, and here is a tissue, crybaby. This memorial to Paul the “psychic” octopus is a six-foot-high plastic statue and frankly, a mite garish, but “public demand from around the world” was so great, his aquarium had to do something, right? Totally.

Mind the whiplash as we move onto animal abuse! Out in Rancho Cordova (it’s like Sacramento), Calif., 50 bunnies were rescued from an illegal breeding operation run from “a recently condemned home,” which, sweet lord, those poor little rabbits. Our pals at Harvest Home Animal Sanctuary is now working to get them all adopted, which you can do through the Sacramento SPCA. Conveniently, Harvest Home is holding a Sanctuary Rabbit Spa Day tomorrow, Saturday, Jan. 29 from 1 to 4 p.m. Go meet some buns, see how great they are, and help out a really good organization. Next let’s go to China and shut down this “farm” for swallows to make the nests that are eaten in bird’s nest soup; it looks like the missing link between an extra-horrendous Soviet-era apartment building and actual prison, and it is full of nesting birds. What happens to the “swiftlets,” a.k.a. the wee swallows for which the nests are ostensible homes? Mystery! Just like what happens inside those creepy cement walls. We know that Sweden is all about hunting wolves again this year—last year the government OKed the murder of 27, this year it’s 20. Wolves “are kept out” of the northern part of the country to prevent them eating up all the reindeer—whatever “ke[eping] out” entails—but this has led to pack isolation and inbreeding, the solution to which is clearly, obviously shooting some of them dead. Of course! Everyone is so smart.

Do they eat the wolves? We know love people love eating animals! Too bad a major report from the British government this week basically said, Meat production is totally unsustainable. Lions specifically got lucky this week, as another “let’s eat lion!” dude from Arizona (seriously what is it with that state?) bowed to public pressure and took the lion meat tacos off his menu. Now what will bored omnivores eat for thrills? GOD you’re a bunch of assholes. You’re also being completely fooled by food companies, whose claims of “health” and “structure/fuction” are poorly regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, because why wouldn’t they say anything to get you to buy their products? McDonald’s shows off its “all-natural ingredients” in its gross-ass “food” with realistic images of everything except the dead animals, which are presented as figurines. Maybe because no one who wants to eat chicken also wants to see what a dead fucking chicken looks like! On the positive side, Sodexo has chosen to participate in Meatless Mondays! Sodexo is a massive “food services provider,” this is kind of a huge and wonderful deal.

Now it’s been scientifically proven that eating more produce makes you objectively better-looking (Vegansaurus is staffed by very attractive geniuses, exclusively), maybe you non-vegans want to involve yourselves with us hot vegetable-eating bitches. If so, Laura wrote you a way better date-a-vegan guide than this nonsense from Grist, but we all know Laura is the cleverest, as evidenced by this week’s Three Vegan Dishes Worth (Temporarily) Ditching Meat and Dairy For, and The Week in Vegan. Like I said, very attractive geniuses.

Don’t forget to protest the dog show this weekend! Afterward—as in, beginning Monday and throughout the month of February—the SF SPCA is offering residents free spay/neutering services! Yeah, FREE. So you with the “intact” dog, do the world a favor and fix him/her, lest you burden the world with even more puppies it doesn’t need. WE HAVE ENOUGH PUPPIES.

[Thanks to reader Rosie for the story about bird’s nest farms! We love tips!]


Make San Francisco a No-Kill City TUESDAY NIGHT!  »

We need people to show up to the Animal Welfare Commission meeting tomorrow, Tuesday, Nov. 16 at 5:30 p.m. in room 408 of San Francisco City Hall. Find City Hall at 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, right off the Civic Center Bart/Muni station!

Adoptable animals are being killed in SF shelters, and if you’d like to express your opinion about making SF a no-kill city, PLEASE COME! The fact is thousands of adoptable animals are put down every year because they fail a ridiculously hard temperament test, or have minor health problems, or are too old, or are a breed considered “violent” and “dangerous.” You know, racism.

Here’s exactly what they’ll be discussing:

5. Unfinished Business
A) The Commission will discuss and take possible action to table indefinitely the issue of whether or not San Francisco should mandate that all city shelters not euthanize any adoptable animal or any animal that would be adoptable after behavioral or medical intervention. The Commission has discussed various aspects of this issue over the course of the past two years. In May 2010, the Commission said it would revisit the issue in three months, and this agenda item fulfills that commitment. [Discussion/Action Item] [Commissioner Brooks]

San Francisco does an admirable job of re-homing thousands of homeless animals each year, far better than most cities, but we do have the resources, the rescue groups, and the ability to make that number even higher. The more pressure we put on the city to make this happen, the more likely it will happen. It’ll take less than an hour of your time and has the potential to help thousands and thousands of animals. Plus, you get to see our government! at! work! And usually a fair amount of crazy people, too. You know you love it.

See you there!


East Bay Vegan Bakesale! Plus sexy pandas, peek-a-boo owls, and your big fat pets in this week’s (abbreviated) link-o-rama!  »

Hello, tiny owl! This is Sam Adams, a resident of the Pennsylvania Audubon Society Center bird sanctuary, who really wants to be in pictures. So much so that he hogged this nice couples’ wedding photo, but that is all right with us because marriage is patriarchal nonsense, while saving owls is wonderful and right. [photo by Hoffer Photography/Rex Features]

Some events for your non-costume dates
East Bay Vegan Bakesale! Tomorrow, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.! Details here!

No Worries Filipino Vegetarian Cuisine will hold its grand opening celebration tomorrow, Saturday, Oct. 30 from 4 to 9 p.m. You can enjoy a special chef’s menu and live music, and an Oakland city official will participate in a ribbon-cutting ceremony. You know Vegansaurus loves No Worries, and we expect this chef’s menu to be extra-tasty. See you at 1442 Franklin Street (at 15th Street) in Oakland!

Hey Boston-area readers! Friend of Vegansaurus, vegan, and ridiculously talented writer Kevin Fanning is participating in a reading as part of Arts at the Armory in Somerville, Mass., on Monday, Nov. 1. You should go! It is like 15 minutes from Boston, no excuses. Buy a chapbook while you’re there, tell them Vegansaurus sent you.

Have you dreamed of growing your own shiitake mushrooms? You are in luck, San Francisco: the Studio for Urban Projects in conjunction with 18 Reasons presents a one-day workshop on exactly that! Led by Maria Finn, the workshop will take place on Monday, Nov. 1 from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Studio for Urban Projects at 3579 17th St. at Dolores. The registration fee is $45 per person, which also includes all the materials you’ll need to “inoculate and care for your own shiitake log.” Further information, including registration, here.

Friday, Nov. 5 is Worldwide Anti-Whaling Day. We’ll give you a more detailed post next week, but mark this on your calendars now: the Northern California protest is set for 3 p.m. that day at the Consulate General of Japan, at 50 Fremont St. in San Francisco. For now, read the official WWAWD site for more information.

A little light reading
Farm Sanctuary asks that you please send an email to the University of Pittsburgh to politely ask that they stop using live pigs for their Advanced Trauma Life Support courses.

Good news, panda-lovers: All of 19 little pandas were born in captivity this year as of last week, the most since 18 in 2006. Chinese scientists credit their success in part to the panda porn program, which shows dumb young male pandas what they’re supposed to be doing with the female pandas—you have no time for adorable, chaste snuggling, pandas. Get to business or die trying, as it were.

Animals who maybe could use a little less human intervention: your cats and dogs, which are all as MORBIDLY OBESE as ALL ENGLISH-SPEAKING WHITE PEOPLE EVERYWHERE, and the Medicare won’t pay for canine-sized Hoverounds, so stop feeding them from your dang plates. Seriously. If you really can’t resist giving your little puppykins treats, toss ‘em some vegetables while you’re chopping them up for your dinner. The dogs I live with eat everything except raw garlic and leafy greens; they love raw onion and every other piece of produce they’ve tried. It’s a win-win! Winston loves bananas, and look how healthy and happy he is! Or at least healthy.

Finally, mark another entry in the Annals of Self-Promotion: Laura’s “Week in Vegan” column debuts in the SF Weekly today! She’s great, go read it!


SFACC and SFSPCA swamped with cats and kittens!  »

That's Chloe! Adopt her cute ass!If you’ve been contemplating a kitty companion, now is the time! Head to SFACC or SFSPCA (or both! They’re right next to each other!) and get your new feline best friend! The shelters are over flowing with cuddly cuteness because of the down economy. Stupid people. Stupid economy. Depression 2.0, it just got personal. Actually, it was personal about a year and a half ago, but you’ve just renewed my disgust.

If you’re not super-keen on adopting but want to help out, I bet you could foster through Give Me Shelter cat rescue. Be persistent if a rescue person doesn’t get back to you! Keep calling! They’re often overwhelmed trying to keep everything in order while receiving no pay and working other full time jobs so don’t be bummed/miffed [Ed.: heh] if they don’t get back to you right away. Just keep trying! It’ll happen! And you’ll save some lives in the process and that makes you a real life Super(Wo)Man. Awww…

[via ABC Local, photo is of Chloe from SFACC! Adopt her cute ass!]


Yoda Kitty!! The cutest cat on earth, this is. More first-rate pics and some really sweet stories about him at Pawesome.

Yoda Kitty!! The cutest cat on earth, this is. More first-rate pics and some really sweet stories about him at Pawesome.

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