1300 W. Conway Rd. Harbor Springs, MI 49740  231-347-2396

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One major concern for pet owners during the winter months is keeping their pet protected from antifreeze, which can be potentially deadly if ingested. It’s important that antifreeze be kept out of pet’s reach and any spills on driveways and other hard surfaces should be cleaned up immediately. Unfortunately, many pets will consume this liquid, as it tends to have a sweet flavor.

Antifreeze can cause kidney failure in thDB3R5148e matter of a couple of days, and this doesn’t happen just by pets lapping it up in the driveway. If a pet walks through it and then goes inside to lick its paws, there is a real cause for concern.

But how do you know if you pet has gotten into antifreeze? If you suspect your pet has consumed antifreeze, contact your veterinarian first and foremost. Signs of antifreeze poisoning vary depending on the time of ingestion, but include:

-Drinking excessive amounts of water
-Vomiting
-Decreased urination
-Depression
-Staggering
-Seizures

Treatment for antifreeze poisoning is available and the earlier it is caught, the better chance of survival. The best way to make sure your pet doesn’t consume antifreeze is to be vigilant about checking the driveway for spills and monitor your pet when they’re out on walks, as well. Make sure to keep new and used antifreeze in sealed containers out of your pet’s reach and consider using a non-toxic alternative.

As always, if you have a question about your pet’s health, please make an appointment at Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic at 231-622-6363.

Candy CornSince November is National Adopt a Senior Pet month and November 17 is National Take a Hike Day, what better way to keep your beloved senior pet in shape than to start taking them for frequent hikes? Just because they have a little gray around the muzzle, doesn’t mean they should be excluded from a fun, outdoor adventure!

There are several things to keep in mind when exercising an older pet, such as the length of the walk, the outside temperature and any medical issues. Ensure that both you and your pet have a positive experience hiking together by keeping these tips in mind:

Impaired vision/hearing: it’s not uncommon for senior animals to have limited vision or hearing loss. Be sure to keep a careful eye on them so they don’t wander off and become lost on the trail. You may want to keep them on a leash for their own protection.

Special needs: there are a number of health issues that older pets develop such as diabetes, arthritis and hypothyroidism, just to name a few. This doesn’t mean your pet should stay home, however! Just make sure your veterinarian gives you the green light when taking your pet on hikes and bring any medications with you, just in case.

Keep your expectations realistic: your dog may have been able to cruise through a five mile run in their youth, but a senior pet may be limited to just a fraction of that. Make sure to bring an ample amount of water and offer it often. If your pet hasn’t had a lot of exercise lately, start out slow to make sure they don’t overdo it.

Time it right: keep in mind that older animals are more susceptible to temperature changes/extremes. In the summer, attempt to go during the cooler hours of the day, preferably in the morning or evening, and if you take your pet out in the winter, consider outfitting them with booties and a jacket/sweater.

Make an appointment at Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic to have their overall health evaluated to make sure they are healthy enough to taking hiking. To make an appointment, please call 231-622-6363.

Daisy 081617November is National Adopt a Senior Pet Month, which aims to bring awareness to the many adoptable older animals waiting in shelters every year to find their forever homes. Each year, Little Traverse Bay Humane Society (LTBHS) finds homes for dozens of senior animals. Younger animals may require a good deal of time from their owners to train them properly. On the other hand, an older animal is likely to be potty trained, while a puppy will require some work and patience. Another thing to consider is that young animals are still developing their personalities, but with older animals, usually what you see is what you get.

Adopting an older animal can be an incredibly rewarding experience, just take it from Emily Stratton, who recently opened her heart and home to Daisy, a 13 year old cat who was surrendered with her feline friend, Lucy, several months ago. Lucy, who was much younger, quickly got adopted, but Daisy found herself sad and lonely at the shelter, being passed up by potential adopters in favor of younger cats. Thankfully, Emily had been keeping an eye on Daisy and vowed that if she didn’t find a home during the Empty the Shelters weekend (where all adoptions were sponsored by the BISSELL Pet Foundation), that she would come on Monday and adopt her.

“It made me so sad when I heard that her buddy (Lucy) left,” Stratton said. “Her story definitely spoke to me and I had to bring her home.”

Stratton said that Daisy has been a wonderful addition, and even though she’s older, she is a great companion.

“Daisy may be an older kitty, but she has a lot of years left in her and a lot of love to give,” she said. “I would recommend adopting an older shelter animal to anyone-they need homes, too.”

It’s Important to keep in mind that older pets may require some extra TLC in regard to their health. Take these tips into consideration so that your senior pet can remain happy and healthy for many years to come!

• Regular check-ups: Make sure to visit your veterinarian for a yearly exam, even if you pet appears in good health as some diseases are not outwardly apparent.

• High-quality food is a must: Older animals are more likely to become obese due to less physical activity than their younger counterparts, so be sure that they are not only eating the appropriate amount of food, but that it’s a high-quality variety that provides your pet with the proper nutrition.

• Consider supplements: If your pet’s fur has lost its luster or if they’re having joint issues, it may be a good idea to consider supplements if your veterinarian approves of them.

• Keep up on oral health: Older animals are likely to have issues with their teeth and gums than younger animals, so schedule a yearly dental exam/cleaning.

• Get them out and about: Make sure you pet continues to be physically active in their golden years. They might not go for as long of a walk as they once did, but be sure they are getting the exercise appropriate for their age and condition. If your senior pet is not used to exercise, consult your veterinarian and develop a plan to start slowly.

Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic offers numerous options for geriatric care to ensure that your pet stays healthy well into their golden years. To make an appointment, please call 231-622-6363.

AbleOne component of health that many people don’t take into consideration when it comes to their pet is mental health. By providing your pet with an outlet to be mentally stimulated and engaged, you’re helping to improve your pet’s overall health. This ultimately results in a happier, more well-adjusted pet. There are several ways to go about this, including:
Training. Teaching you dog a new trick has benefits beyond a better mannered pup. Working with your dog to teach them something new not only engages their brain but also keeps their daily routine fun and interesting. And that saying about old dogs can’t learn new tricks? Not true! Even if you’ve adopted a senior pet, they will definitely benefit (and enjoy!) frequent training sessions with you.

Take a leisurely walk. When you take you dog out on their walk, try not to be in a hurry. Part of what your dog enjoys so much about their daily walks is being able to take the time to smell new things. Since a dog’s sense of smell is so much greater than ours, scents allow him to “see” the world through an olfactory lens, which can keep him mentally stimulated.

Toys and puzzles-both dogs and cats benefit from toys. This can be anything from a laser pointer for your cat (which is great physical exercise, as well) to a fun treat puzzle toy for your dog (that forces them to work for their food). Many pets even enjoy interactive games like hide and seek with their owners. Or consider hiding treats for them to find throughout the house on a rainy day-they will love the challenge!

Consider a cattery-this is typically an enclosed area outside or perhaps built just off a windowsill that curious cats can cozy up in. It allows them to experience the outdoors but stay safe from predators or without getting lost. Being able to listen to birds and feel like they’re outside is a great way for them to enjoy themselves.

Socialization is key-enroll your pup in doggy daycare which is a wonderful way for them to make new friends and also learn proper social skills. This is a good way to keep them mentally stimulated and learn to be more tolerant of other dogs (and people).

As always, if you have any questions regarding your pet’s health, please contact Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic at 231-622-6363.

edited2Crisp air and leaves falling…is there anything better than fall? It’s a great time to get out with your pets-cooler temperatures and sunny days are perfect for a nice hike in the woods. Make sure your pet has a happy and healthy fall by keeping these tips in mind:

-Keep up with your pet’s heartworm and flea/tick medications. These pesky parasites can still be found in the cooler months, so make sure you pet still receives their preventative medications on a regular basis. Be sure to look your pet over frequently for ticks -these are easy to pick up, and 2017 has been a bad year for them!

-Speaking of walks…keep an eye on your pup to make sure they don’t gobble up something they’re not supposed to while outside. This time of year, hundreds of varieties of mushrooms pop up in the woods, and while many are harmless, there are some that could do serious harm if you dog were to consume them.

-Watch what they eat around the house, too-the cooler months often start to drive rodents inside which prompts homeowners to put out traps and rodenticides which can be potentially deadly if your pet were to ingests some. This also includes rodents who have consumed poison and died-if you pet decides to make a yummy treat of one, contact your veterinarian immediately.

-Fall means lots of fun decorations around the house, but to your pet, this might mean a new treat to chew on or fully consume. Make sure they don’t get into trinkets or candles as these items can cause intestinal obstruction (among other issues), which requires immediate medical attention.

As always, if you have any concerns about the above issues throughout the fall season (or any time!) you can make an appointment with Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic at 231-622-6363.

JazzieFullbodyWednesday, October 11 is National Pet Obesity Awareness Day, which originated as a way to prevent and reduce obesity-related health issues in pets. Obesity not only makes a huge impact on an animal’s health, but also on their general well-being, as it makes it difficult to run, play and breathe properly. It’s never easy to turn down a food request from our furry friend, but it’s necessary in order to make sure they stay healthy and happy. Make sure to abide by these tips to keep your best friend at their ideal weight:

It may be difficult for you to visually determine if your pet is obese, so make sure they receive a yearly wellness exam with your veterinarian. Here, they will be weighed and your vet can tell you what the ideal weight is for your pet. Your veterinarian will also determine if there are any underlying health obesity-related health issues.

Weigh your pet at home. It may be difficult, and your home scale might not be quite as accurate as the one at the doctor’s office, but it will give you a general idea of what your pet weighs and a way to keep track if that number starts to creep up.

Be aware of what your pet is eating. Is your pet eating a healthy, appropriate-sized portion of food each day, or is your pup all too eager to oblige when your toddler is feeding them crackers during snack time? It’s important to be aware of what your pet is consuming and to keep this amount in check.

-Feed them high-quality food. It may go without saying, but not all pet foods are created equal. Be sure to ask your veterinarian for a recommendation on what food would be suit your pet’s lifestyle and activity level.

Take a hike….with your pet! Taking your pet on walks obviously works better for dogs than cats, but it’s important for both cats and dogs to receive daily exercise. A laser pointer or fun toy for your cat can work wonders in regard to getting them moving. A game of fetch in the backyard or a swim at the lake are good ways to burn a few calories with your canine companion.

Finally, if in doubt about your pet’s weight, make an appointment with your veterinarian to have them evaluated. To make an appointment with Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic, please call 231-622-6363.

blk lab hurricane harvey pups smallAs the rain fell and the storm waters rose, so did the concerns about the safety of Houston’s residents during Hurricane Harvey. It was quickly determined that the situation in southern Texas was far more dire than anyone had predicted and people scrambled to evacuate to safer ground. Unfortunately, not all of the area’s furry friends were so lucky. In the midst of the evacuation, many pets were left behind and separated from their families.

Thankfully, there were a lot of individuals on the ground helping make sure these sweet babies were rescued and brought to safety. Once these animals were placed in local shelters, great efforts were made to reunite them with their families, however, many were never claimed. This is where Little Traverse Bay Humane Society (and countless amazing rescue groups across the country!) came in.

Last week, we opened our doors to 19 dogs and puppies affected by Hurricane Harvey. They are pets that were rescued directly from the floodwaters in addition to those who were pulled from already-overcrowded shelters to make room for incoming displaced animals.

Included in this transport were a litter of black lab puppies left in a backyard after their family evacuated without them. These poor babies waited as the waters around them rose, hoping for a hero to save them. They were eventually rescued from their flooded backyard, but sadly, help arrived too late for four of the nine puppies. Thankfully, however, rescue crews jumped into action to care for the remaining five. When they were stable and it was apparent that no one was going to claim them, arrangements were made for them to make the long trip to northern Michigan.

These puppies are just five of the 19 that have now been given a new start and hope for a brighter future. There’s Jack, an adorable Golden Retriever/Husky mix who can’t stop playing and jumping for joy as he races around outside in his new surroundings. Then there’s Maggie Sue, a loving, humble hound mix whose sweet, sad eyes tell a tale of their own. They, along with all of the other Hurricane Harvey affected animals, will find amazing, forever homes very soon.deter with pups caption

What’s fantastic is that the Bissell Pet Foundation has generously agreed to sponsor all adoption fees for Hurricane Harvey-affected animals through September 30! We are so grateful that each and every one of these special pets will find new homes, but we are also so grateful to the Bissell Pet Foundation for their support of these animals and our organization as a whole.

Our Hurricane Harvey affected animals are still being evaluated by our veterinarians, but some are already available for adoption and all will be ready by the end of the week. If you are interested in adopting one of these amazing dogs, continue to check our website at www.ltbhs.com to keep updated on available animals or stop by for a visit!

Everyone at LTBHS is so proud to be part of the solution in helping these displaced animals. This is an incredible example of the power in partnerships between rescue groups and coming together to truly save lives.

catcatcatOctober is all about our feline friends at Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic! On Tuesday, October 17, LTBVC will host Fix Your Feline, which allows owners to have their cat spayed or neutered and vaccinated for rabies, for only $30 (a $120 value!). Pet owners can also have their pet vaccinated for FRVCP, microchipped and treated for fleas/worms for an additional $30 during the event.

On Saturday, October 28, LTBVC will host a Feline Wellness Day, which will include a brief exam, rabies vaccination, FRVCP vaccination, microchip and flea/worm treatment. This package is available for only $35 (a $160 value!).

Both of these clinics offer important, preventative ways to keep your favorite feline friend happy and healthy. Spaying or neutering is incredibly important for many reasons. First and foremost, it can help them lead a longer, healthier life. Altering your animal can increase their lifespan—in cats, this can be as much as 3-5 years! This is because spayed/neutered animals have a very minimal, to no risk of developing diseases such as prostate, ovarian and testicular cancers, among others. Sterilizing your pet will also probably improve their behavior and reduce the likelihood of spraying and aggression. It will decrease your pet’s desire to roam, as well, which keeps them safe in two ways: one, they will be less likely to be hit by a car and injured/killed and two, they won’t become injured due to a fight with another animal. It also helps control the pet overpopulation, reducing the number of unwanted litters in shelters.

Making sure your pet is vaccinated against rabies and FRVCP is an incredibly important way to keep them healthy, too. Rabies is a highly contagious disease spread through the saliva of infected animals and affects the central nervous system. Common carriers include raccoons, skunks and bats, though it can be present in any mammal. Once symptoms of the disease appear, it is almost always fatal. Thankfully, it can be easily prevented with a rabies vaccine. FRVCP is a vaccine that protects your cat against three potentially deadly airborne viruses and is an easy way to keep them healthy.

To sign up for the Fix Your Feline spay/neuter clinic, call 231-347-2396 and to sign up for the Feline Wellness Day, call 231-622-6363.

AmSeptember is Happy, Healthy Cat Month which focuses on ensuring that your feline friend has everything they need for their general well-being. Check out the following tips to keep your cat as happy and healthy as possible!

-It’s very important that cats have access to clean, fresh water. Be sure to change their water on a daily basis to prevent bacteria from accumulating in the bowl (and your cat may be more likely to actually drink from it!). Elderly and nursing cats typically require more water than other cats and are more prone to dehydration, so be sure to look signs such as sunken eyes, lethargy and panting. Some cats appreciate running water, so consider purchasing a bowl where water is continually running.

-Make sure you have enough litter boxes to go around. The rule of thumb is one litter box per cat, plus one. So if you have two cats, you should have three boxes. Be sure to put the boxes somewhere where your kitty is comfortable going, as well, so they will actually use the box.

-Speaking of litter boxes…cats will sometimes go to the bathroom outside their box. This may not be a behavioral issue, but may be the result of a urinary tract infection or other illness. It’s important to have your cat tested for such by your veterinarian to rule out any medical issues.

-Don’t be a litterbug-spay or neuter your cat. This should go without being said, but spaying or neutering your pet is one of the most beneficial things you can do for them. It not only helps prevent unwanted litters from ending up in shelters, but provides many health benefits for your pet, such as reducing the likelihood of certain cancers. Little Traverse Bay Humane Society provides a Low-Cost Spay/Neuter Program that allows pet owners to have their cat sterilized at a low rate.

-Keep their teeth healthy. Cats, like humans, get tartar build-up on their teeth which can lead to decay and gum disease. Most owners find it challenging to brush their cat’s teeth, so it’s a good idea to schedule a dental exam and cleaning with your veterinarian. Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic offers dental exams and cleanings to felines.

-One of the best ways to keep your cat healthy is to keep them up to date on their vaccines and a yearly exam. At Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic, we highly recommend cats receive vaccinations for rabies, distemper and feline leukemia, but after a chat with your vet, you can best determine which vaccines are right for your pet.

Make an appointment to keep your feline friend happy and happy this September by calling 231-622-6363.

Darby 082317Allergies are a problem for many people every autumn, but what about pets? Surprisingly, they can be a real issue for our furry friends, too. When you think allergies, most people assume they come on in the springtime and are gone by summer. Whenever the seasons change, however, is when allergies are most prevalent.

For pets, this can mean a number of things. Unlike people, allergies don’t typically manifest in the form of runny eyes and sneezing. Typically, pet allergies come in the form of uncomfortable itching, which causes animals to excessively lick or scratch at their skin. This can result in secondary infections, which can be painful and cause larger skin issues. Itchy ears from allergens can cause ear infections, which can become a real problem if not properly treated.

The good news is that there are many solutions to bothersome seasonal allergies! The first thing to do if you believe your pet might have allergies is to make an appointment with your veterinarian to figure out if this is the real issue. If it’s determined that allergies are the problem, then your veterinarian can decide on the best route to manage the condition. Some pets may respond well to anti-itch shampoos and antihistamines, but others might require occasional steroids to treat them.

If you think your pet may suffer from seasonal allergies, make an appointment with Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic at 231-622-6363 to have them evaluated.

BaxWe recently observed National Check the Chip Day, which brings awareness to the importance of microchips. Microchipping is an effective way to ensure your pet’s safety and an owner’s own peace of mind. It is the best way to make sure animals get home safe if they are ever lost. Pets who are not microchipped often find themselves in shelters looking for a new home and the more unfortunate ones who end up in high-risk shelters are sometimes euthanized.

A microchip is an implant that is inserted under the skin that contains a unique identification number. This number is registered through the National Register Database which contains the dog’s information, as well as the owner’s. The implant is no larger than a grain of rice and is inserted under the skin in the back of the neck in a matter of minutes. The pet’s ID number can be retrieved with a scanner, which is typically found at vet clinics and animal shelters. Unlike pet tags or ID collars, microchips last the lifetime of the pet. Microchipping is a standard procedure at most shelters. All animals at LTBHS are microchipped before they are adopted.

Another important aspect of microchipping is making sure to update the chip information. Each time a pet owner moves or changes their phone number, the chip should be updated. External tags and collars are another smart thing to do for your pet. While these are not permanent, they are another helpful tool in making sure your animal returns home safely.

If your pet is not already microchipped, please call Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic at 231-622-6363 to schedule an appointment to have this important procedure done.

AddisonOlderNewIt’s not uncommon to find a lump or bump on your pet, but what exactly is it, you wonder? While it’s easy to fear the worst when you see on, these are not usually cause for concern.

But what ARE they? A lipoma is the most common type of lump that veterinarians see. This is a round, soft, non-painful mass under the skin that may look a little unappealing, but will not usually cause harm. Lipomas are typically benign, meaning that they do not spread to other places in the body and grow to a certain size and stay that way.

Occasionally, some lipomas are malignant and spread through an animal’s body. These can obviously pose a health threat and will likely need to be removed for your pet’s health. Since it’s so difficult to know if a lipoma is benign or malignant, it’s wise to have your pet seen by a veterinarian who may do a biopsy to determine the root cause.
Other issues that may cause lumps or bumps on your pet include sebaceous cysts that are essentially just clogged oil glands which will resolve on their own. Rarely, sebaceous glands develop into tumors called sebaceous adenomas, which do not pose any more threat once they are surgically removed.

If your pet has a strange lump or bump, it’s a good idea to get it checked out by a veterinarian to ensure that there are no underlying issues. To make an appointment for your pet to be evaluated by Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic, call 231-622-6363.

edited 1While it goes without saying that outdoor kitties are often at risk for more health issues than their indoor counterparts, one easy way owners can keep them healthy is through routine testing and vaccination for FIV/FeLV.

Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) is a disease that weakens a cat’s immune system. FeLV stands for the feline leukemia virus, which also affects the immune system along with the bone marrow. Both are highly contagious diseases common in outdoor cats spread through infected saliva. Both diseases can be present in a cat’s system for many years without showing any signs of illness. Symptoms of the diseases are similar and can include fever, lethargy, repeated respiratory infections, dental issues and in some cases, chronic eye and skin conditions, in addition to diarrhea and weight loss.

Because there are so many varied symptoms associated with these diseases, it’s a good idea to have your cat tested if they become ill—especially if they are an outdoor cat (this increases their odds of contracting these diseases substantially). Tests can be run by your veterinarian to determine if FeLV or FIV are the cause of your cat’s illness. The good news is that there are also vaccinations to help protect cats against both FeLV and FIV and are available through your veterinarian. Call Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic at 231-622-6363 for additional information about FIV and FeLV and how you can protect your feline friend from these diseases.

smalliStock 539149925It’s summer, which means owners need to be vigilant about protecting their pets (and themselves!) against ticks. Unfortunately, 2017 has been an extremely huge year for these pesky critters, as their population is soaring, especially in Michigan. While it’s not known why their population is exploding across the state, it’s thought that ticks have continues to spread by birds transporting them further and further north.

Ticks are not so problematic themselves, as is the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi that they carry. This bacteria can transfer to any animal or human that the tick bites, which can transmit Lyme disease. Lyme disease can be a serious and debilitating problem to both humans and animals if it is not caught early and treated.

It’s extremely important to protect your pet against Lyme disease and one way to do this is to get them on some sort of preventative medication which discourages ticks from making a meal of your furry friend. Make an appointment today at Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic to protect your pet against ticks and to keep them healthy.

Little Traverse Bay Veterinary Clinic offers a number of preventative medications to protect your furry friend from ticks and other parasites.  To make an appointment, call 231-622-6363.  

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glacier yellowstoneOne thing we’ve all learned while at LTBHS is that there is never a “normal” day here. When we arrive at work at 7:30 each morning, we’re prepared for pretty much anything.

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At Little Traverse Bay Humane Society, each and every animal has a temporary home until they find a permanent one of their own. It goes without saying that when you’re a no-kill shelter, some animals stay longer than others. The cute, tiny puppies and kittens usually find homes the quickest and often times, purebred dogs don’t stick around long, either. Your average, two year old mixed breed dog might stay for two to four weeks, which isn’t too bad, especially when the right home comes along.

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adorable kittens11111The holiday season has officially begun, and that means our favorite TV channels, radio stations, inboxes and even mailboxes are full bursting full of advertisements prompting us to buy the latest gadgets, clothing or big screen TV. Black Friday has come and gone and with it, Cyber Monday, as well. This brings us to the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, also becoming better known in recent years as Giving Tuesday.

Texas julieAs the big white transport van pulled up in front of the shelter, a chorus of barks and whines filled the air. When the doors opened, they revealed crates stacked from the floor to the ceiling filled with dogs of all colors and sizes. There must have been at least 50 dogs in all, each one given another chance at a new life where there had previously been no opportunity for such.

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Last week was very busy here at Little Traverse Bay Humane Society. Don’t get us wrong, it’s always busy here, but when road trips and transports are involved, it keeps us hopping even more than usual!

A week and a half ago, we were contacted by one of our partners, the Bissell Pet Foundation. They informed us of a shelter located in Tennessee that was in dire need of some help. They had many dogs who were all looking for homes and they ask if we could step in. The Bissell Pet Foundation graciously offered to pay for any and all expenses if we would be willing to make the trip down south to bring some of the dogs back here. This small, out of the way shelter rarely saw any traffic and because of this, their adoption numbers were incredibly low. We knew that we could find great homes for these animals, so we didn’t hesitate to load up the LTBHS van with crates and blanket and head south.

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adorable kittens11111At the beginning of each year, we make goals for the following year. After the success we achieved in 2014, we knew we had to step it up this year. In 2014, our goal was to find homes for 650 animals—a goal we greatly surpassed when we found homes for over 700 dogs and cats! We broke all previous adoption records, which is something we’re very proud of!

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DotWhen you meet Dot, one of the first things you notice is her contagious smile. It spreads from ear to ear and it’s hard not to smile watching her dance around, wiggling from head to toe. She is thrilled just to be outside with someone who is spending time with her. Without a doubt, Dot is likely one of the happiest and sweetest dogs you’ll ever meet.

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howl 2015Ask any staff member at Little Traverse Bay Humane Society, and they’ll all tell you the same thing about this summer: it was absolutely crazy. Crazy busy, of course, but busy in a way that we know we’re doing something right here.

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Howard photo legMany of you are already familiar with Howard’s story. For those who are not, when homeless Howard arrived at LTBHS several weeks ago, it was evident that something was very wrong with his leg. Worried about his safety, we took him to our veterinarian where it was determined that he had a fractured back leg. This was likely from being hit by a car and unfortunately, the leg was beyond repair. With our veterinarian’s recommendation, Howard underwent surgery to amputate his fractured leg. Despite this, we knew with Howard’s sweet personality and big spirit, he’d be able to overcome this challenge.

Adoption Lester and Bob AndersonSummer is flying by and so are the number of animals flying out our doors into their new, forever homes! We just finished up an incredible adoption week at LTBHS, which is something we’re thrilled about, of course. We found homes for 27 animals in total, which is right behind the banner week we had during our Collars for a Cause Adopt-A-Thon in June.

At Little Traverse Bay Humane Society, it’s safe to say that we’re busy every day of the year. There are always kennels to clean, dogs to bathe, cats to be fed and floors to be vacuumed and mopped. There is training that takes place every day through our Mutts With Manners Program and daily visitors to greet. This is just the tip of the iceberg, however, when it comes to all the work we do on a daily basis at LTBHS.

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3 onlineWhat an amazing week! As many of you know, we just held our 7th Annual Collars for a Cause Adopt-A-Thon at Dave Kring Chevrolet-Cadillac in Petoskey on Saturday, June 13. We are happy to report it was a HUGE success! We took 41 animals to the event and found homes for 24 for them! What’s even better is that during the entire week, we found homes for 37 animals total! Yes, 37—isn’t that incredible?! This is after bringing in two transports earlier during the week of 27 dogs on top of the other animals brought in locally. This resulted in 31 dogs and cats that were rescued by LTBHS in one week alone!

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At Little Traverse Bay Humane Society, we are constantly taking in homeless animals with the ultimate goal of finding them new, loving homes. A typical week might go like this: we take in a few animals that have been surrendered by their owners, pick up one or two from our local stray center, or perhaps receive a transport of five to ten high-risk animals from another shelter.

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Count12We’re happy to help the animals who need us most, especially when they need us most. This unfortunately often happens when a situation is at its most dire—when an animal is at risk in a kill shelter. These animals might have medical issues, be on the older side, have behavioral problems, or they may not have any of these at all—the shelter might just not have room for them. This is where LTBHS comes into play. We are fortunate here at LTBHS to be able to reach out to other shelters and rescues in need, helping to pull at-risk animals who might otherwise be euthanized.

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Zeus dogIt’s difficult to imagine what some of these animals go through before they arrive here. This is true especially when it comes to Zeus, a three year old retriever mix. Zeus and many other dogs were found living in what had at one time been a rescue facility. They had been cared for by an elderly woman who loved animals, but over time, she was no longer able to manage all of them. Eventually, when the place was discovered, over 200 dogs were found living in kennels with very little care.

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Shasta dogAt Little Traverse Bay Humane Society, (LTBHS), we give second chances.  Especially to the animals who would not likely be given one elsewhere.  At LTBHS, we know that every life is valuable and important, which is why we do everything in our power to give these animals the second chance they deserve, and more importantly, the opportunity to find a loving, lifelong family of their own. 

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Each morning when we arrive at work, none of us really know what the day will bring. Of course there will be dogs to be let out and played with, kitty condos to clean and potential adopters to greet, but beyond that, nothing can prepare us for who or what will come through our doors. This is exactly what happened yesterday.

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guster2One sad statistic that is recorded in the animal welfare field is ‘adoption return rate’.  This is the percentage of animals who are adopted and then at some point in their lives, returned. 

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Week 6: Whew!  This was a challenging week for us.  We lost a total of 10.8 pounds.  It's hard not to think about food when you're stuck inside all the time (and the start of paczki season doesn't help, either!).  The frigid cold weather has made it difficult to get out and enjoy our favorite winter activities, but we have two weeks left and we're determined to finish big!  The good news is that we've lost a total of 169 pounds so far!  We're also excited to announce we've gained two additional sponsors, Linda Smith and Marianne Moffatt. We're thankful to everyone for their encouragement along the way-we couldn't do this without you!

Week 5: We're back on track this week!  We lost a total of 22.2 pounds collectively.  This is no small feat, especially during the long, cold winter months when hearty comfort foods like casseroles and mac and cheese sound particularly good.  We're extremely proud to have lost 158.3 pounds as a group so far and with three weeks left to go, we're hoping to surpass 200 pounds!  Wish us luck!  

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Week #3,

I didn’t post last week, I must have been too busy monitoring meals. Week #2 posted a cumulative weight loss of 26.4 pounds and Week #3 came in at 27.1 pounds.  That’s a total of 125.7 pounds for 3 weeks!!  It’s so interesting to see the changes in everyone as the weight loss starts to show.  One person has lost 15 lbs (granted she is younger!) and you can totally see it in her face.  It’s been fun to watch everyone settle into healthier eating habits.  We bought a cookbook-The Drop 10 Cookbook by Lucy Danziger-which has been a tremendous help in giving ideas for healthy, calorie conscious meals.

Thank you everyone for your support and here’s to another week of Pounds for Hounds!

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January 13, 2015

The first week is officially finished! A total of 72.2 pounds was lost!!  It’s amazing how differently people lose weight, although the average was 4 lbs per person, some of our younger staff members clocked in at 7 lbs.  The week was pretty rough (no pun intended!) with everyone getting used to different eating habits.  But we did it and are committed to losing weight through February!

We would also like to thank three additional sponsors:  Bob Hull, Una Fornshell and Susan Letts.  Thank you for keeping us inspired!

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January 7, 2015

Well, everyone has finally weighed in for Pounds for Hounds to officially start! 11 staff members are participating with a total weight of 1,885.6 pounds. There will be weekly weigh-ins and we’ll share the total weekly loss with you!

We would like to thank our generous sponsors: Deter Racine, Nancy McEnroe, Linda Bolton, Carol Giles, Judy Gillow, and Marilyn Frey who have agreed to match the pounds lost with pounds of dog food. If anyone else would like to join as sponsors, call Teresa Chaney at 231-347-2396 or tchaney@ltbhs.com.

Wish us all luck as this will be a very hungry bunch of girls for the next few weeks!

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Roxanne2In 2013, we had a phenomenal year—our best to date, as we surpassed all of our previous adoption records. We were thrilled when we totaled our year-end numbers to discover we had managed to find homes for 620 animals!

It was hard to believe we’d be able to do better than that. We decided to push the envelope anyway—our goal was to adopt out 650 animals in 2014, no matter how lofty that sounded (without adding any additional kennels). We knew this might be a challenge, but it was something we strongly believed could be done.

As it turns out, we were right. In fact, we were more than right—we exceeded our goal by 50 adoptions and ended up finding homes for 700 animals this year! This is a 13-percent increase in adoptions from last year. Our returns were lower, as well, we believe due to the continuation of Mutts With Manners and Ruff to Ready behavioral programs.

We are incredibly proud of these numbers and thrilled that we not only reached our goal, but significantly surpassed it!

This is not to say 2014 didn’t come without some challenges. We saw a number of animals come through our doors with medical problems. There was Roxanne, who had a luxating patella which required surgery. And there was Grover, who arrived with patches of fur missing and blistered skin that required medication and special food for treatment. We had a number of dogs arrive who tested positive for heartworm, which is a very time consuming medical issue to treat. We’ve also taken in quite a few older animals in 2014, as well. This can be frustrating as everyone typically is looking for cute, little puppy to adopt, which means older animals wait longer for homes.

Perhaps it’s these challenges that make 700 adoptions in 2014 even more special. Regardless of what we face on a daily basis, we promise each animal that they will be cared for and loved until they find the perfect family of their own.

At the end of the day, however, we couldn’t do all of this without our generous community of supporters. We are extremely proud to break records once again, but just know that YOU are a huge part of this, and should be proud, too!

As we head into 2015, we look forward to another year of lifesaving rescues and fantastic adoptions. Whatever the year brings, we’ll continue to provide a warm bed, veterinary care and individual love and attention to every animal as long as they’re here. Thank you for a wonderful 2014 and here’s to the year ahead!

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kittens23It’s December, which means the holidays are upon us. Everywhere you turn, there are advertisements for the latest gadgets, newest vehicles and popular clothing brands. While these things are all very nice, in the end they’re just that: things.

What if you could give a more meaningful gift this season? How about a gift that truly keeps on giving every day of the year?

Here at Little Traverse Bay Humane Society, you can give the gift of saving a life this holiday season and honestly, what could be better than that? By giving a loved one a membership to LTBHS (or renewing your own!), you’re giving them a gift that lasts throughout the whole year. We rely on our members to help us provide warm shelter, veterinary services and personal attention to all the animals in our care, in addition to offering proactive programs to the community that helps control the pet population.

Each week, we go through approximately 75 cans of kitten food alone. Another way to help homeless animals this season is by donating specific items that we use every day such as bleach, canned dog and cat food, toys or soft beds. Gift cards are much appreciated, as well, as we can use them throughout the year on the items we need most.

What about giving the gift of a forever home to a shelter animal? We never cease to be amazed by the wonderful animals who come through our doors every day. They all deserve loving families of their own and our goal is to help them find forever homes in time for the holidays. This Saturday, December 6, from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m., we’re hoping to do just that. We’ll be hosting a Holiday Open House with incredible adoption specials that encourage families to adopt one of the amazing animals here at the shelter.

So as you dive into this busy holiday season, please remember the animals who are waiting to find loving homes of their own. Whether it’s giving the gift of membership, donating supplies or opening your heart and home to a homeless animal, please consider giving some hope for the holidays to an animal in need this season.

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While we hope that all of our shelter residents find loving homes right away (and the majority of them do), some are here much longer than others. Regardless of this, shelter animals have a home at Little Traverse Bay Humane Society as long as it takes them to find their forever family.

Cats, in particular, sometimes take a little longer to find the right home. Over the years, there are a few that have stuck around and become somewhat permanent fixtures here at the shelter. These cats have all won a place in our hearts and we’ve enjoyed getting to know their quirky personalities and seeing their expectant faces each morning.
Recently, however, we’ve had a number of surprising adoptions which we couldn’t be more thrilled about! A number of our longtime shelter residents found their forever homes, and in many cases, were adopted out with another shelter cat. It may have taken them awhile, but we know it was worth the wait. We’re so happy that these dynamic duos found loving families together.

Eden and Ellen2Eden and Ellen
These two sisters arrived at LTBHS as kittens and were here several months as they grew into teenagers. Eden and Ellen were inseparable and where one was, the other wasn’t far away. They could often be seen curled up together in the kitty beds and cat condos. We were hopeful that they’d be adopted together, and recently, they were! We are so happy that these sweet sisters were able to stay together.

 


Shadow and Norma
11 year old Shadow had been with us since he was very young, and while the handsome long-haired, black cat was friendly, he didn’t beg for attention and was content to sleep in his bed in the lobby most of the day. We assumed Shadow would be with us for the rest of his life, and while that was fine, we never lost hope that he might find the perfect family to call his own someday. Recently, Shadow was given this opportunity, and he even found a home with shelter kitten, Norma! We are so happy that these two have each other to play and cuddle with, and after all this time, Shadow has been given the chance he deserves.

Sammy and Juniper
If there was ever an odd couple, Sammy and Juniper would be it. Sammy was extremely depressed after she arrived at the shelter and not surprisingly, took her bad mood out on other shelter residents and staff. As the months passed, Sammy slowly became more social, but we think that perhaps it was Juniper, who arrived here as a tiny kitten, who changed Sammy’s mood completely. Juniper was a special needs kitten and somehow Sammy seemed to realize this and took Juniper under her wing. This odd pair quickly became best buddies and would often be seen snuggling together. We were thrilled when this dynamic duo was recently adopted to the same family!

Rosie and Digi
Rosie, a longtime shelter resident, had been here since she arrived at LTBHS eight years ago as a kitten. This big girl was somewhat shy which led most of us to assume she would spend the rest of her life here. What typically takes most cats a few weeks or maybe months took Rosie eight years, but amazingly, she finally found the right family. She was also adopted with another cat, Digi, who had been at the shelter for several months. We’re so happy for these two girls and know they will have a great life together!

Every day, we work toward achieving our mission to offer warm shelter, veterinary services, and personal attention to all the animals in our care, as well as proactive methods to control pet overpopulation. It is stories like Rosie and Shadow that motivate us to continue our efforts to make sure every animal who comes through our doors finds a loving, caring home, no matter how long it takes.

Rabies Clinic 070If you could do one or two simple things to keep your pet safe, would you?  On Saturday, April 5, pet owners will have the chance to attend a rabies, microchip and licensing clinic hosted by Little Traverse Bay Humane Society at Pellston Animal Clinic that provides important lifesaving measures. 

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kittens10Spring at Little Traverse Bay Humane Society means one thing: kittens.  Starting around March, LTBHS becomes inundated by kittens of all shapes, colors and sizes. The kittens at LTBHS are fortunate, because they are given a warm bed, good food, veterinary care and all the love and attention they need.  Though we are always successful in finding these cuddly kittens loving, forever homes, not all others are this lucky.  Many unwanted litters end up in shelters only to be euthanized due to lack of space.  Others end up on the street and are constantly in search of food and living in fear of predators. 

DSC 0672Last week, we received quite the surprise here at LTBHS.  No, not the kind of surprise you might expect to find such as three new litters of kittens, a truckload of rescued puppy mill dogs or an animal with an injury or illness.    

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When 2013 rolled around we had one major goal here at LTBHS: to have the best adoption year ever.  Since we were established in 1952, we’ve found homes for thousands of animals, but this year we determined that we’d have the biggest year yet, and guess what?  We did! 

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For most, buying a car is a pretty straightforward event. From November 21 to January 2, however, those who purchase or lease a Subaru will have the opportunity to do more than just buy a vehicle—they will have the chance to help save a life.

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We are excited to announce that we’ve reached our goal of raising the much needed funds for our Bucks for Boone campaign! 

 

Last spring, we rescued 46 kittens from one home. That rescue alone highlights how quickly a situation can spin out of control. 

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When Aimee, a one-year-old Shih-Tzu mix, arrived at LTBHS in early January in a cardboard box, we knew she was a fighter. Rescued from a home where she was severely abused and neglected, this adorable little girl didn’t give up.

Thanks to the generous support of our amazing community of animal lovers, we didn’t give up on her either.

Little Traverse Bay Humane Society has launched a comprehensive newtraining program, created underthe guidance of world renowned dog behaviorist, Brenda Aloff,to provide dogs with a great start in basic obedience and minimize undesirable behaviors sothey can puttheir best paw forward!

JoinStafford’s Pier Restaurant in Harbor Springs and share the love at a special event to raise money to save the lives of homeless animals at Little Traverse Bay Humane Society!

Little Traverse Bay Humane Society is offering free sterilizations through our Pit Stop Program for pit bull and pit bull mixes living in Emmet County thanks to a $20,000 grant from PetSmart Charities®!

Win an amazing seven-day stay in a luxurious Jamaican villa and support the Pit Stop Program! Raffle tickets are on sale through December 13 to LTBHS members only. (Food and airfare not included.)

It’s been an amazing year here at Little Traverse Bay Humane Society. Thanks to the support of our generous members, more than 364 animals have found forever homes since January!

Join Palette Bistro in Petoskey and Little Traverse Bay Humane Society for a special event to raise money to save the lives of more homeless animals!

Often, when people visit Little Traverse Bay Humane Society, they comment about how hard it would be to work here. While our goal is to give every animal a happy ending, some of their stories literally bring tears to our eyes. Such was the day that Sheila and her eight puppies arrived at the shelter.
Sheila was pregnant and abandoned in the woods. She gave birth and carried two of her puppies to a nearby road – both still with their little umbilical cords!
download100 raffle tickets for Michigan shaped Adirondack chairs painted by artist, Aaron Kirby, a lead animator for the Shrek movie series, Shark Tale and Gnomeo and Juliet are available for $100 each. The winner will be announced at Howl at the Moon on Thursday, August 23. To purchase tickets, please call Teresa Chaney at 231.347.2396.

At Little Traverse Bay Humane Society, our goal is simple: To save the lives of homeless animals.

Bay Harbor will once again be “going to the dogs” as the host of the 6th Annual Bay Harbor Bow Wow beginning at 11 a.m. on Sunday, July 8, 2012.

Find your new best friend at the Dave Kring Chevrolet Cadillac Adopt-a-Thon from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, June 16!

Get your dog(s) vaccinated for rabies, licensed with Emmet County for one year and micro-chipped on Saturday, June 9, 2012.

Little Traverse Bay Humane Society recently rescued 46 three-week-old kittens, all of whom are going to need medical attention, lots of nutritious food and plenty of kitty litter!

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At Little Traverse Bay Humane Society, our goal is simple: to save the lives of homeless animals. And the demand is high. In 2011, we rescued 456 animals and adopted out 474 – 64 more adoptions than in 2010!

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There’s never been a better time or a more important reason to become a Little Traverse Bay Humane Society member!

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A big round of "a paws" to Harbor Springs 5th grader, Nathaniel Kirby, and the Harbor Springs Kiwanis Club for their donation of $50 in honor of Nathaniel's essay about the importance of LTBHS!

 


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While many stories personally resonate with me over the years, Champ’s story perfectly illustrates not only my commitment to our mission, but the commitment of everyone at Little Traverse Bay Humane Society.

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Little Traverse Bay Humane Society will continue to find ways to help animals who cannot help themselves. We hope you will be inspired to help, whether it’s by renewing your membership or adopting one of our shelter animals.

Grab your snowshoes and your furry four-legged friend for a picturesque walk with Little Traverse Bay Humane Society.

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In conjunction with its efforts to expand, Little Traverse Bay Humane Society is pleased to announce the addition of Petoskey native, Marci Singer, as its new Director of Development and Marketing.

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The chilly nights and shorter days are indicators that summer is over... and what a summer it was for LTBHS! In all of my years as Executive Director, I have never experienced the level of activities that we experienced this summer.