July 15, 2015

Why You Should Adopt a Senior Dog

The author's senior dog, Daisy.

Don't get me wrong - I love puppies, but boy can they be a lot of work! Senior dogs, on the other hand, are much calmer and already have established personalities. On average, dogs are considered to be "senior" at the age of 7 (though younger for larger breeds and older for smaller breeds), and are often the first to be euthanized for space at shelters because they often have trouble finding homes. Need more reasons to chose a senior pet next time you want to add a new family member? How about six more:

  1. Older dogs are calmer and (in most cases) settle in quickly to their new home.
  2. Older dogs have usually had some training already (they come pre-programmed!).
  3. They don't always have special health needs or behavior issues. Sometimes older dogs are dropped off at the shelter because their owner has passed away, there is a new baby, or some other reason completely beyond the dog's control.
  4. You have the opportunity to make their last few years (or months) the best of their lives.
  5. Less mess. Senior dogs aren't likely to be peeing all over the house or chewing up your favorite shoes. 
  6. Senior dogs are down to hang out on the couch or go for a ride - whatever you want to do, they want to do it with you!
This post was written in memory of Orlando, a senior dog that romped and loved the last 4 years of his life at the Amazon CARES shelter in Iquitos. To help older dogs like Orlando and the other dogs that call the shelter their home, please consider donating here.

June 17, 2015

Charlie's Angel: Rescuing A Dog With No Hope

He could barely walk
Charlie when Ursala rescued him
I have never met Ursula Vari, yet I feel I know her.  While visiting Iquitos she came across a dog she named Charlie.  

Charlie, in recovery

Charlie is the reason I started Amazon Community Animal Rescue, Education & Safety in 2004.  

Charlie, gaining confidence
Charlie is the reason our work remains important.  Even a no-kill shelter would have euthanized Charlie.  He had no hope, and his eyes begged for the mercy of death.

But Charlie's ailments are not necessarily fatal.  Despite being riddled with mange, parasites, infections, and suffering from dehydration and malnourishment, we have treated many animals like Charlie. 
Ursula Vari

Ursula had hope, even when Charlie did not.

Thanks to Charlie's Angel, Ursula, and the dedicated Amazon CARES team in Peru led by Tanith Peña Araujo.

Amazon CARES needs your support to rescue animals like Charlie. Additionally we are desperately trying to find new land for a shelter devastated by flooding.  Read more about the flood.

Donate for flood relief.
Donate for animal rescue programs.

Written by Molly Mednikow

June 11, 2015

Throwback Thursday: History Repeats Itself As Flood Washes Hope Away

This blog was originally published in March of 2012.

The Itaya River continues to rise, strongly affecting those living on the coast, and including our no-kill animal refuge at Cabo Lopez.

The inundation of rain has caused a fast deterioration of the shelter.  There is no longer a dividing wall between healthy animals and those in treatment.  CARES' workers are endangered, as they must wade through water to get food to the dogs, avoiding snakes and other dangers.  Sadly, the dogs have no play area anymore.

We currently have 50 dogs at the shelter.  We are re-locating them to a Maloca building on the property.  The rain continues and the flooding continues to worsen.  Amazon CARES's has appealed to Peruvian authorities for help with this disastrous situation, and we can only hope they will listen to our plea.

Our number 1 priority at this time is getting animals adopted and re-located.  If you can help us rebuild our shelter, please donate today.

View more photos on Facebook.

Translated from Spanish by Molly Mednikow.