A Letter to Governor Pat McCrory

Governor McCrory,

Animal Welfare is important to both you as well as your wife Ann.  I applaud you for taking steps to ensure the safety and welfare of animals who have no voice.

As a small hobby breeder of Australian Shepherds I do everything in my power to do things "right."  My dogs have all of the genetic and health screenings that are part of our parent club Code of Ethics.  I go over this by adding 5 or more other genetic screenings that are not required.  I do this because it is another tool in ensuring my dogs are healthy.

My dogs have adequate vet care.  My vet and his staff know me by name.  When new studies come out on health issues I am one of the first to go and discuss it.  Every treatment done on my dogs includes discussions on option and we make decisions together. 

All of my dogs show in various venues, we show conformation, do sheep herding and basic obedience.  They live in my home and are part of the family.  It is important to show they are good examples of my breed.  The litters I produce are my ambassadors.  I choose to sell most into pet homes where they are sold with limited registration which does not allow breeding.  Any puppy kept intact is for my personal use to show.  No dogs leave intact unless on a co-own contract so I can ensure that they are true great representatives of the breed.

I know this is long winded but I wanted to make sure that you understand where I am coming from.  I do not cut corners anywhere in my program.  Period.  This is why I had concern with the recent Animal Welfare Act which put my breeding program in the crosshairs of the Department of Agriculture.  It would have treated me like a criminal.

Let's fast forward now.  I was asked by a local all breed rescue to foster some kittens.  I said sure I had an open crate why not.  What I got was an emaciated mother and four listless kittens, one with a badly infected eye.  There had been five kittens but the County Animal Shelter inoculated them before leaving and as they were in poor health one died. 

I have spent the last 48 hours nursing these cats into health.  The mother is skin and bones, the kittens were wobly on their feet.  The one with the bad eye gets his eye treated four times a day with medicine - medicine that he only got AFTER leaving the county animal shelter.

Why do I tell you this?  It is not to say 'Wow look at me what a great person I am.'  No it is because after reading the paperwork I found out these kittens who I thought were 3-4 weeks old are in fact SIX weeks old and born in the "care" (I use this word loosely) of a state run Animal Shelter.

The mother has been in almost 2 months.  Had these been animals in my care I would be charged with animal neglect at best.  Yet the Department of Agriculture (who would have been telling ME how to run my breeding program) seems to have no issue with allowing animals to be neglected using my tax dollars.

I have been at other shelters and have not seen this lack of apathy.  If it were up to me this *shelter* should be shut down or at minimum there should be a wholesale change of the guard.  There is absolutely NO reason for stunted, sickly emaciated kittens to be living in a shelter...BORN in a shelter.

I would love to have you or your wife come and see these pitiful cats.  Cats that MY money will be taking care of (made smaller because of a large chunk being taken through various taxes from federal state and local governments).  I will be doing the job that the state and local governments should do.

I truly think before the Department of Agriculture is asked to judge how I breed and care for dogs they should get some experience by actually caring for the animals IN THEIR OWN SHELTERS first.  Once you and the state are running YOUR shelters per the rules and regulations for basic animal husbandry, then by all means come tell me how to care for my animals.  Because I refuse to lower MY standards to those used on these poor defenseless creatures in my home.

Thank you for your time and consideration.



Jodie Strait


Day 3 - Cats

Prada and Gabana continue to get better and better. They are playing up a storm and acting more like normal kittens.  Coach has flashes of acting normal and Dolce is better but you can tell feels puny still.  Absolutely no discharge from his eye when we medicated it (I clean it 4 times a day).  I am taking him to the vet tomorrow - the rescue will not reimburse but I want my vet to check his eye for me and maybe help to ensure we dont get cocidia or giardia going.

Gucci is progressing well - she is eating up a storm and is so sweet.  When I say emaciated I mean it she is hair and bones.  The fact she still has milk amazes me.  She is a good mommy.

I finally opened the paperwork that came with them and was floored.  I though these kittens were 3-4 weeks old.  Nope they were born 8/13/14 AT THE SHELTER.  Mom came in on 7/29/14.  The amount of rage I have I cannot express.  These little skeletons were in THEIR care using MY TAX DOLLARS or not using my tax dollars their entire miserable lives.

I know what a 6 week old kitten is supposed to look like and this is not it - they should be ASHAMED at minimum and in jail if it was up to me for animal neglect (please not this is NOT the Mecklenburg Animal Control it is another county).  I am horrified that they would allow poor Dolce to have an eye infection so bad he will probably lose an eye.  It is disgusting and if these are the people who are supposed to be the advocates for animals no wonder society is so messed up.

I have to walk away from typing more.  I wish PETA would spend more time cleaning up shelters than attacking people like me.  UN REAL

They are here - Cats

Possibly the most pathetic things ever.  An emaciated yet gorgeous split faced mom and four kittens arrived.  The shelter killed one when they were adamant that they had to be innoculated before leaving - YES that works well on older cats or um HEALTHY ones on unhealthy babies not so much.  So one is already dead before leaving the shelter.

They are all small and skinny - one has a raging eye infection and so I started calling him crusty.  His eye is swollen with discharge.  I was able to get some eye meds for him.  Trying to get the momma cat to eat - I had to give her several choices of food.

She seems sweet but is really stressed out poor thing.

Invaded by CATS

I am getting a litter of kittens from one of the local county Animal Shelters.  I know nothing about them other than it is a mother and five kittens.  I put up a crate in the back room and ran out to buy some supplies as I have no clue what will come with them.

They were scheduled to be destoryed today so I am their last chance - I guess they have been on the rescue list for a while.  So for a couple of weeks there will probably be more cat updates then dogs.

Down to Five

Another three puppies left this weekend.  Two are now happily living in Tennessee and one is now a Texas girl.  I wantched the plane on my phone as baby Sunni got to her new family.  She came out of the trip in great shape and they are already in love with her!

The two in Tennessee are settling in well too!  We have two more leaving in two weeks.  One is flying to her new family in California and the other is headed to Alabama.  I was laughing to David being down to five is like having a normal size litter!

Luckily everyone is on Facebook so I can stalk the puppies.  We still have not named the girl we are keeping.  I like the name "I Live For Applause" from a Lady GaGa song, David likes Ecstatic Frenzy (which I told him sounds like a hyper Poodle) so we are still up in the air.  We still have the one boy available which I am puzzled by he is GREAT but I am sure his right home will come up!