WATCH: These Texas cowboys are saving pets and livestock after Hurricane Harvey

Straight from the Horse's Heart

BY Lora Strum as published on PBS

They started on foot, but as the rains let up, they’re bringing in the cavalry — the horse cavalry, that is.

The Texas Animal Health Commission, a state agency dedicated to protecting livestock and pets from natural disasters and disease, is assisting in Hurricane Harvey recovery efforts. They are sending in their official cowboys to wrangle livestock and free trapped pets.

The agency’s cowboy rescuers, known as the Horseback Emergency Response Team, ride horses into disaster areas to aid in animal recovery efforts. Volunteers accompany them, wading into flood waters to rescue strays.

The NewsHour spoke with Thomas Swafford, public information officer for the Austin, Texas-based agency, about what his agency is doing to ensure the safety of pets and livestock amid the intense flooding in the region.

Seventy-four shelters in Texas accept evacuees with pets, while even more animal shelters are…

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The Healing Powers of Cats

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Good Witches Homestead

There are many stories of animals as healers. Research shows that simply petting a cat or dog can lower your blood pressure. Therapy animals who visit nursing homes and hospices bring peace and joy to patients who may not have smiled in months.

There are stories of horses who help people heal emotional and psychological issues, stories about dogs who can somehow sense cancer in people, even before doctors can find it, and dogs who can tell when a person is about to have a seizure.

CATS AS HEALERS

Research has even shown that the frequency of a cat’s purr can aid with healing of bones, tendons, ligaments, and muscles as well as provide pain relief. These healer kitties would work their magic in various ways:

  • By curling up next to a recovering cat or dog
  • By cuddling up to a worried client in the waiting room
  • By comforting a…

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Groups File Formal Petition to Ban Cyanide Traps in Wyoming

Straight from the Horse's Heart

Story by as published on the Casper Star Tribune

“We’re not at war with native wildlife, and it is irresponsible to allow poison landmines to be sown anywhere in Wyoming,”

Star-Tribune File Photo

A coalition of environmental groups formally petitioned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Tuesday asking for a ban of M-44s, a cyanide trap used to kill coyotes across the state.

Many of the groups, which include Western Watersheds Project, WildEarth Guardians and the Center for Biological Diversity, filed a similar petition in Idaho in March. Wildlife Services, an arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, decided to remove all M-44s from private, state and federal land in Idaho.

“We’re not at war with native wildlife, and it is irresponsible to allow poison landmines…

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Festive Hazards

A safe holiday for all creatures …

Castle Vets Reading

christmas dog and cat

Now we are on the countdown to Christmas, many of us will be putting up the tree and decorations over the coming weeks. Your pets may also find this time of year very exciting and even come up with some novel games like “Climb the weird indoor sparkly tree”, “eat the Christmas decorations as fast as you can” and “eat the lovely goodies that our humans thoughtfully left out for us“.

Veterinary practices usually see an increase of poorly pets over the Christmas holidays, with illnesses ranging from stress and tummy upsets to more serious problems such as intestinal blockages and accidental toxin ingestion/poisonings.

I’m sure you will agree that you would much prefer to spend the holiday season celebrating with your family, rather than visiting the veterinary practice; so here are my tips for having pet safe celebrations.

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Druids Bones

Keep your mistletoe out of reach of your dogs and cats during the holidays. If you suspect your pet has ingested mistletoe, contact your veterinarian or Pet Poison Helpline for treatment recommendations. …

wytchenwood

dsc_0005-001 Our Mistletoe Gift

The lay that is no lay calls for a tree

That is no tree, of low yet lofty growth.

When the pale green of autumn casts her leaves

My leaves are freshly tufted on her boughs.

When the wild apple drops her goodly fruit

My All-Heal fruit hangs ripening on her boughs.

Look, the twin temple-posts of green and gold,

The overshadowing lintel stone of white.

For here with white and green and gold I shine –

Graft me upon the King when his sap rises

That I may bloom with him at the years prime,

That I may bind him in his hour of joy.

The fae of frost and ice have arrived here at last; the hedgerows are white with frost, the trees sparkle in the winter sun and Mistletoe hangs in glistening bunches of gold and silver.

We have been very privileged to be…

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