Daily Walrus - Helping People Help Animals

Vegan Wedding Bells

April 29, 2008
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As you can see the Daily Walrus has taken a few weeks off and you deserve an explanation.  Ryan and I are in the midst of planning the best vegan wedding ever!  We still love Wally and are continuing to do our best at helping animals but have been negligent in reminding others to do the same.  I would  like to take a minute to discuss vegan weddings with you in case you are planning a wedding anytime soon.

A vegan wedding is comprised of more than just delicious food, although that is super important.  We are in the middle of selecting a caterer that we feel can represent vegan food well.  We are looking at this as an opportunity to showcase vegan delicacies and hopefully our guests will be impressed and maybe even inspired.  Besides the food we have to be concerned about our attire.  I have finally secured a wedding dress that is not made with silk and we are exploring options for tuxes not made of wool.  In addition, we will be asking our bridal party to wear cruelty-free clothing.

We will be getting back on track with the Daily Walrus now.  You should expect, though, posts every once in a while on vegan weddings since we are becoming experts on the topic. 

And don’t worry, Wally’s grey suit is 100% vegan!

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Natural Disasters – Oh My!

April 9, 2008
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Staff here at the Daily Walrus are on our death beds from presumably the plague.  But we did not want to leave you, our loyal readers, without a tip for helping animals.  Scientists at Colorado State University have predicted an above-average hurricane season this year with at least one major hurricane hitting the United States.  In addition to this, it seems that tornados are a daily occurrence (or that could just be in my nightmares).  Whether you live in an area that is high-risk or low-risk (Atlanta got struck with tornados, nowhere is safe) you need to have an evacuation plan.

Your plan should include several necessary components.  First, figure out where you will go if you need to evacuate – find out now which places will allow you to bring your beloved animals.  Second, make sure that you have crates/carriers for the animals to be transported in.  This means that if you have ten cats but only one carrier (because you only take one to the vet at a time) you need to get at least four more!  I know that storage can be a pain, especially if you live in a tiny New York City apartment, but get creative – put a sheet over your carrier and it can be an end table, or you can just hide it in your closet or car like we do.  Finally, always have your pets’ medication available.  If your pet takes medicine regularly, do not wait until there is only one dose left before refilling – make sure you always have at least a weeks supply on hand.  The same goes for food.


Bring Your Veg*nism to School

April 3, 2008
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Next week for class, I (Jenny) have to compare two research articles on the same topic and discuss the methodology of them in a class presentation (I won’t bore you with the details of this project).  I am using this as an opportunity to teach my classmates about vegetarianism.  I have chosen two articles, which both come to the conclusion that vegetarianism reduces the risk for colorectal cancer.  So while I am blowing their minds with my skills in research methodology, I am also teaching them about the benefits of going vegetarian.  When you are given a class project, try to think of it as a way to teach your teacher and/or your classmates about living a cruelty free life.


Use Coupons to Give Food to Shelter Animals

April 2, 2008
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We just received two coupons in the mail from Nutro Natural Choice for two FREE bags of food (one cat and one dog).  Our animals don’t eat Nutro, but we will still make good use of these coupons.  They can be redeemed for food you can donate to your local shelter.  We suggest getting on as many pet food websites you can think of and looking for coupons – you may even find some for the brand that you use.  You can also sign up for mailing/e-mail lists for coupons.  Remember, though, that it really only helps the shelter if you redeem the coupon for them.  Shelters run predominantly on volunteer services and do not have the time to make a pet food store run to cash in the coupon for food. 


Support Accurate Fur Labeling Laws

March 17, 2008
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We know that none of you, dear readers, are the type to support the vile and disgusting fur trade.  However, there are lots of other morons in the world who think that fur is an acceptable part of their wardrobe.  Others, perhaps in an attempt to be more compassionate, will buy items lined with what they presume is fake fur since it isn’t labeled.  What they don’t realize is that in many cases, fur listed as “faux” on labels is in many cases real. 

A Humane Society study of popular clothing lines “found raccoon dog fur on 80 percent of a nationwide sample of fur-trimmed jackets purchased from well-known retailers and designers. Of the raccoon dog fur jackets tested, not a single one properly identified the animal in advertising or labeling, instead calling it such things as faux fur, raccoon, or simply not labeling it at all.” 

Since then, New York has enacted legislation that requires all companies to accurately label clothing items containing real or fake fur.  This allows consumers to make educated decisions and avoid cruelty for fashion’s sake. 

What can you do to help?  Contact your Representatives and ask them to support the Dog and Cat Fur Prohibition Enforcement Act of 2007 (H.R. 891).  Click here to find out how. 


Join animalattraction.com and Support Homeless Animals

March 7, 2008
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Animal Attractionis an online community for animal lovers and their pets.  It is kind of like myspace, but in addition to having your own profile you can create ones for your pets as well.  There are member profiles, articles about pet health care, blogs, photo galleries, and more.  The best part is that when you sign up, you get to select either the ASPCA, North Shore Animal League, Best Friends Animal Society, or the Petfinder Foundation as your charity of choice.  For simply signing up, your choice gets a one dollar donation.  For each day you log in to your profile, your charity of choice will get one cent.  It doesn’t sound like much, but its a couple of bucks that group didn’t have before.  You can also earn additional money for your charity by encouraging your friends to join.

 For more information, click here.

Wally and Tito are considering sharing a page with this as their main picture.  What do you think?

Wally & Tito


National Canine Weight Check Month

February 13, 2008
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According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, 40% of dogs in the United States are overweight or obese.  That is why many vets across the nation are teaming up this February for the National Canine Weight Check.  You can take your dog, possibly without an appointment, to the vet’s office to for a free weigh-in.  They will give you some info on canine obesity and a card to help you keep an eye on your dog’s weight.  Call your local vet to see if they are participating.  If not, ask if you can swing by to get your dog (or cat) wieghed for free anyway.  

Everyone loves their pets and wants to make them as happy as possible.  Often, we express this by giving them treat after treat or overfeeding.  While your pets (and you) may enjoy this feeling, you may be “loving your pet to death.”  Give your pets the right amount of food, limit their intake of unhealthy treats, and be sure they get plenty of exercise.  If you know of someone with a pet that is overweight, let them know about the National Canine Weight Check.  It may save their best friend’s life!        

For more info, check out stopcanineobesity.com.


Preparing for an Animal-Friendly Valentine’s Day

February 11, 2008
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Hey folks! Hope you had a great weekend. Here at Daily Walrus HQ we are gearing up for another busy week – one that happens to include a pet-friendly Valentine’s Day celebration.  No, we aren’t buying Wally, Tito and Luigi any candy or flowers.  Quite the opposite, in fact.  We’re making sure that none of the gifts we give each other contain any toxins that could harm the little guys.

That means chocolates (even delicious vegan chocolates) are off the list, as they can cause vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, an elevated heart rate, or worse in dogs and cats.  Also certain flowers, including lilies, are a no-go because they are poisonous.  Click here to see a list of other flowers and plants that are poisonous to pets from the ASPCA.  Additionally, they have a list of the 10 most common hazardous plants for pets.

Remember that even if your favorite flowers aren’t on the list, pets can still get an upset stomach from ingesting the petals, so keep them out of reach.  Also remember that roses may have thorns that can be dangerous if stepped on, chewed, or swallowed. 

If you think your pet may have eaten something poisonous, give the ASPCA’s poison control center a call at (888) 426-4435. Remember that there is a $60 fee for this service so your first option may be to call your vet during normal business hours.  Also, many communities have 24-hour pet clinics that may be able to answer your questions. 

If you need recommendations for Valentine’s Day gifts, the ASPCA also offers a few suggestions in collaboration with 1-800-FLOWERS here.  They also get to keep 10% of the purchase price so it’s a win-win-win-win for you, your sweetheart, the ASPCA, and your pets. 

Click here for more info on keeping your pets safe from poisonous substances. 

Click here if you think your pet has been poisoned. 

Click here for the ASPCA’s Guide to a Pet-Friendly Valentine’s Day. 


Happy (late) Chinese New Year!

February 8, 2008
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So I got a bit excited over Operation Happy Sock and totally forgot to write about the Chinese New Year celebration yesterday.  I love this holiday because it gives me an opportunity to “revisit” some of the New Year’s resolutions I have slacked-off on.  This means getting my groggy ass out of bed early and taking our dog Luigi to the park every morning.  We’re pretty good about this- he goes almost every day.  But sometimes we just don’t feel up to it.  We can do better.  Another area that needs improvement is brushing the animals’ teeth every night.  Again, we do a pretty good job of this.  But we need a reminder or it’s easy to let this one slip. 

Even though it’s a day late, use the Chinese New Year celebration to restart your sluggish resolutions.  You can rededicate yourself to losing weight, exercising, or buying only cruelty-free products.  Whatever your resolutions, be sure to consider the impact you can have by promoting compassion and living an animal-friendly life during this Year of the Rat!  Happy New Year!   


Operation Happy Sock

February 7, 2008
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Thanks to a post on lifehacker.com, the “orphaned” socks at the bottom of my dresser drawer may finally have a new home.  The post mentioned Operation Happy Sock, a project founded a few years ago by Martha Powers.  Using goodsearch.com, I did some research and learned all about this wonderful undertaking.  Powers had the great idea to make toys for shelter cats using only donated socks, a little polyester fiberfill, and some catnip.  How simple/brilliant is that?  The idea caught on and girl scout troops across the country began doing this for merit badges.  Some Happy Socks even found their way to a shelter in Kuwait

Seriously folks, what are you waiting for?  It doesn’t get much easier than this.  Dig out your old, unmatched socks, buy a couple bags of fiberfill and catnip, and start stuffing!  You can find more detailed (yet very simple) instructions here.  You could also host a toy-making party.  Invite a few friends over for some vegan snacks and drinks, pop in a movie, and stuff away!  Then just drop off the toys at a local shelter and let the catnip work its magic.       


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About author

Hello - we are Jenny and Ryan, a couple living in Brooklyn, New York. We are both busy with school and work but try to take time to do something every day to make the world a better place for animals. Occasionally we may link to outside websites for additional resources, but we do not necessarily endorse all policies of these organizations. Despite the title of our blog, the focus is not only on walruses. So what's with the title? We named this blog after our cat, Wally, aka The Walrus. We are the proud parents of two cats (Wally and Tito) and one dog (Luigi).

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