Critter Club Finale at Gabriela Mistral Elementary
Beyond the Bell students attended their final sessions of Critter Club at Gabriela Mistral Elementary in Mountain View on Thursday, December 17. Special guests included PAWS 2 PAHS volunteer Kathy and her daughter Alex who introduced everyone to Cody, a very young but beautifully trained therapy/service dog who visits hospice and hospital patients and seniors in assisted living sites. Students learned about the ways in which Cody helps these people and brings them much- needed comfort.
The sessions ended with students meeting and petting Cody and playing with him. Students also received Critter Club t-shirts designed for Gabriela Mistral School. Then everyone, including Cody, took part in posing for class photos.
PAHS’ Critter Club Makes the News!
The December 18 Mountain View Voice contains a front-page article by Kevin Forestieri about Critter Club, the PAHS humane education outreach program for underserved neighborhoods. The article focuses on general aspects of the program as well as underscores the important role played by the staff and volunteers in the program who interact with students in classrooms and after-school settings.
The Mountain View Voice visited the December 10 sessions at Gabriela Mistral Elementary School led by the PAHS humane educator Leonor Delgado and educational advisor Patty Hurley along with Steve Garcia, a volunteer for the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Department, and his search and rescue dog Rubi. Steve and Rubi’s presentation received special coverage.
To read the complete article, click here.
Search and Rescue Dog Rubi Shares Her Expertise at Critter Club!
Rubi and her trainer Steve Garcia, search and rescue volunteer for the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Department, met with two groups of interested and enthusiastic students from the Beyond the Bell after-school program at Gabriela Mistral Elementary in Mountain View participating in PAHS’ Critter Club. Following a brief introduction to the concept of animals who work for us and help us given by PAHS Humane Educator Leonor Delgado and PAHS Education Advisor Patty Hurley, Steve and Rubi took over to show the students what a search and rescue team does.
Steve introduced the students to Rubi through a poem he wrote on the whiteboard:
If I am out and have lost my way,
I do not need to be afraid.
I will not walk. I will sit and stay
And wait for Rubi to save the day.
He then went on to explain how Rubi was trained, and in doing this, demonstrated his use of commands with Rubi. He also engaged students in an active Q&A session about their own life experiences as well as their expectations about Rubi’s abilities. The final activity for the session was a “search and rescue operation” in which students and staff participated. At closing, Rubi and Steve received a hearty round of applause and a well-deserved “thank-you” from the students.
PawPerfect—App and Web Design Reviewed by PAHS
Senior Jenny Ko, a BFA (Bachelor of Fine Arts) candidate in Graphic Design studying at San Jose State University, approached PAHS for advice this fall semester. Graduating seniors are required to present a thesis project and report on that project, as a kind of thesis defense, before graduation. Jenny, who is a long-time animal lover, wanted to design the mockup for a product to help shelter and rescued animals available for adoption.
Carole Hyde, the PAHS Executive Director, was Jenny’s non-faculty thesis advisor. Under Carole’s tutelage, along with that provided by Graphic Design professors at San Jose State and comments submitted by the PAHS Humane Educator Leonor Delgado, Jenny created the mockup for PawPerfect, a helpful, easy to navigate, and beautifully designed app and potential Web site to pair potential adopters with dogs available for adoption.
Jenny’s presentation of her thesis project took place the afternoon of Wednesday, December 9, in conjunction with Rough Cut, the BFA Graphic Design Senior Show, held at the San Jose State Student Union. Carole and Leonor attended this event. Attendees were introduced to PawPerfect and learned how the proposed app and Web site would function. We were very pleased with the ease of use and excellent integration of statistics, graphics, and helpful—and often friendly and whimsical—messages to prospective users. Kudos to Jenny for her wonderful work!
PAHS 2015 Annual Gala!
December 3 marked the 2015 Annual Gala, celebrating PAHS’ 107th anniversary on the Peninsula. Guests began arriving at 6:30 in the evening to participate in the Red Carpet activities, which were accompanied by the bagpipe music of Jeff Campbell. PAHS staff and volunteers greeted them as they entered the newly renovated Aquarius Theatre in downtown Palo Alto. Former program manager Erin Scott interviewed co-hosts Philip Giffin and Marilyn Kanes and Palo Alto Mayor Karen Holman, among others.
The evening began with a moment of silence requested by PAHS Executive Director Carole Hyde in memory of the victims of the San Bernardino shootings. The featured film was Happy Feet, a lively animated musical film that conveys important messages about respecting all members of a given community, following humane instincts, and preserving ecosystems. At the intermission, Patrick Livingstone, Magician Unique, entertained attendees with his amazing sleight of hand in a series of magic tricks that built on humane themes.
The 2015 Gala was the most successful fundraising gala in PAHS’ history. PAHS thanks our guests for contributing to the joyful holiday spirit and supporting our ongoing efforts to help animals—emergency veterinary and spay-neuter programs, advocacy for humane causes, and educational outreach for local audiences of all ages.
PAHS Is Featured Guest on KFJC Radio’s “Thought Line,” hosted by Robert Emmett
Robert Emmett interviewed special guest Philip Giffin, Hollywood music producer and composer and co-host of the PAHS 2015 annual gala, and PAHS Humane Educator Leonor Delgado live from the Foothill Junior College radio studio on Monday, November 30. The Q & A was focused on PAHS community outreach and education projects as well as the gala itself and Mr. Giffin’s experience in working with PAHS and his lifelong career as a producer and composer. PAHS thanks Mr. Emmett for the opportunity to appear on the program and for his insightful questions and comments.
Click here to listen to the interview in its entirety. It’s advised to skip the first 8 minutes of the program—before playing the audio, move the slider to the right and stop when the time indicator reaches 0:08:00.
PAHS Critter Club Session, with “Participating Kittens,” at Gabriela Mistral Elementary School, Mountain View
This fall PAHS has been visiting the Beyond the Bell after-school program at Gabriela Mistral Elementary School, a dual-immersion (English–Spanish) school in Mountain View that shares a campus with Mariano Castro Elementary School. We’ve been offering parallel Critter Club sessions to two groups of enthusiastic students, one composed of second and third graders and the other consisting of fourth and fifth graders.
All students participated in an introductory session held Thursday, November 12, in which they learned about domesticated vs. wild animals, domesticated animals as pets, good pet care, and the humane treatment of all animals. The following session on Thursday, November 19, was devoted to cats—issues around community (feral and stray) cats and kittens, spay-neuter options, care of community cat colonies, and cats as pets. Students reviewed the principles of good pet care and learned how to “read” cats’ body language.
Several special guests accompanied PAHS educator Leonor Delgado at the November 19 sessions: Patty Hurley, our educational advisor and volunteer, and local cat rescuer Deborah Buck along with two very young feline charges, Frankie Blue Eyes, a three-month old Siamese/Ragdoll mix rescued kitten, and Elsa, a three-month old Tortie kitten, also rescued. Both kittens loved the limelight and the attention!
The next set of Critter Club sessions will focus on information about dogs, with special attention to reading dogs’ body language and safety around dogs, as well as humane treatment of dogs and best practices for the care of pet dogs. Following sessions will feature a local working dog trained to participate in search and rescue missions.
PAHS’ Column for the San Jose Mercury News and the Palo Alto Daily News—“Dance in on ‘Happy Feet’ for Humane Society gala”
Published November 18 in the San Jose Mercury News and November 20 in the Palo Alto Daily News, this column, written by Leonor Delgado, PAHS’ Humane Educator, is an open invitation to Peninsula communities and beyond to join PAHS at our annual gala celebration, to be held the evening of Thursday, December 3.
The featured movie this year is Happy Feet, “a delightful and very musical reminder that even the smallest of humane gestures can snowball into a benefit for all.” Joining PAHS’ staff and volunteers and returning emcees Philip Giffin and Marilyn Kanes will be Patrick Livingstone, Magician Unique, who appears regularly with The Cabaret Project and on the speakeasy performance circuit in Chicago.
Click here to read the column in its entirety. Hope to see you at the gala!
Menlo-Atherton High Students Create a Humane Society Club
November marked the creation of a new service club devoted to humane causes and projects at Menlo-Atherton High School in Menlo Park. Sophomore Nathalie C. spearheaded the formation of this club and was soon joined by Holly N., Sara M., Margaret G., Emma D., Joey L., Julia M., Natalie P., and Nhi H. The first project undertaken by the new club was a donation of hand-made and -crafted kitten and cat beds in cheerful colors, certain to be a big hit with local cat rescue groups, not to mention their feline charges. The Humane Society Club will be active again post-finals week, engaged in other humane-oriented projects.
Menlo-Atherton is the first high school on the Peninsula to organize a Humane Society Club and will be the first to send a junior board member to PAHS. We’re looking forward to recruiting junior board members at other local Peninsula high school. We expect that the junior board will meet during the month of February.
PAHS Participates in Gunn High School Fall Service Fair
PAHS joined several other local charities at Gunn High School’s Fall Service Fair held Tuesday, November 17, in the main quad at the lunch hour. Student turnout was very high, and many attendees visited the PAHS table. PAHS is recruiting Gunn students interested in forming a humane club and sending a representative to our board of directors.
PAHS Partners with Pets In Need for Kiddies 2 Kitties
The first session of the Kiddies 2 Kitties shelter-based reading program in partnership with Pets In Need in Redwood City was held the afternoon of Friday, November 6. Two young students from Palo Alto enjoyed reading to and helping to socialize several kittens in the shelter’s kitten room.
Remaining 2015 sessions at Pets In Need will take place from 3:30 to 5:00 p.m. the following Fridays: November 20, December 4, and December 18. Contact PAHS at (650) 424-1901 or write to us at email@example.com to learn more about the program.
“National Make a Difference Day” and “National Feral Cat Day” at The Pet Place in Menlo Park
Students from Gunn High School and Jordan Middle School representing Youth Community Service Palo Alto, joined PAHS staff at The Pet Place on Saturday, October 24, to collect food for local community cats and donations for the PAHS’ Spay-Neuter program that also helps these cats. The students were wonderful ambassadors for these two causes, and thanks to their efforts, PAHS will be able to help spay or neuter five cats and feed many more. Mid-Peninsula Media Center taped interviews of the student volunteers and staff from The Pet Place and PAHS.
National Feral Cat Day, celebrated every October 16 or a proximate date by animal welfare organizations and concerned individuals alike, highlights the plight of stray and abandoned cats in our communities. PAHS has traditionally participated with a cat food drive and collection to support our spay-neuter efforts.
National Make A Difference Day was celebrated on October 24 this year, the 24th anniversary of the event—the largest single national day of service to others. Youth Community Services Palo Alto participated in numerous local events, including our PAHS food and donation drive.
“Sharing Our Pets” at the Office of Sponsored Research, Stanford University
Aileen Thomas of the Office of Sponsored Research at Stanford (pictured to the left with PAHS Board Member Maureen Allen holding our favorite PAWS 2 PAHS Ambassador Rookie) invited PAHS for a special visit to the Office of Sponsored Research at Stanford on Thursday, October 22.
Maureen, along with Rookie and accompanied by the PAHS Humane Educator Leonor Delgado, met with an enthusiastic group of employees to share pet stories and experiences and participate in a Q&A session about pet care and the ways in which PAHS helps Peninsula pets and stray animals. Our discussions were lively and informative, and Rookie once again proved to be one of PAHS’ best-loved goodwill ambassadors.
PAHS Annual CatWorks Recognition Event
PAHS thanked “cat people” (trappers, feeders, rescuers, fosters, educators, and others) from all over the Bay Area the afternoon of Sunday, October 18, in the Embarcadero Room at the Rinconada branch of the Palo Alto Library. Guests enjoyed refreshments and a raffle for animal-themed prizes as well as the opportunity to meet like-minded volunteers and local animal welfare activists and learn about PAHS’ latest efforts to help all animals—and cats, in particular.
PAHS is grateful to the Palo Alto Library for allowing us the use of the room and facilities. We’re looking forward to hosting another event very soon in conjunction with the Library.
PAHS Yappy Hour, October 14
Friends of PAHS and their canine companions joined us at the special poolside fall Yappy Hour hosted by the Palo Alto Sheraton. Everyone, especially the dogs, had a wonderful time. The Sheraton provided a generous supply of doggie treats, and sponsored a raffle in which three lucky winners received gifts of a beautiful wine basket and $100 gift card, dinner for two at the Sheraton’s poolside restaurant, and lunch for two at the same location. The Sheraton also donated 20% of all dinner and bar revenues for the day to PAHS!
We thank the Sheraton management and staff for their generosity and hosting for this very enjoyable event!
PAHS Attends October 13 Arraignment in Robert Farmer Animal Cruelty Case, San Jose—Reported by CBS News
Representatives from PAHS joined a group of concerned residents and people directly affected by Robert Farmer’s abduction and killing of their cats—a spree in the Cambrian area of San Jose that began in mid-September or possibly even earlier. The arraignment hearing for Farmer took place at 1:35 p.m., Tuesday, October 13, at Superior Criminal Court in San Jose. Farmer continues in custody, and bail was set at $75,000.
Reporters from various TV stations and newspapers were present at the arraignment and then outside the court building, where they later interviewed Cambrian residents with special attention to people whose cats were killed or are still missing. The reporters also interviewed PAHS, and Carole Hyde, the PAHS Executive Director, provided statements that were partially included in CBS’ coverage of the arraignment.
To read the CBS coverage in its entirety, click here.
The photo to the left is of GoGo, one of the cats still missing and unaccounted for.
Latest PAHS Palo Alto Daily News Column: "Palo Alto Humane Society's award-winning program goes to schools" by Carole Hyde
The September 2, 2015, edition of the Palo Alto Daily News featured PAHS' latest accolade in humane education and advocacy, a 2015 Bronze Telly Award in the short film category for its mixed-media story of caring, rescue, and love, It's A Dog's Day. PAHS is in the winners' circle along with CNN, CNBC, and Disney Studios. According to Linda Day, executive director of the Telly Awards, "Palo Alto Humane Society's artistic accomplishment demonstrates creativity, skill, and dedication to the mission of teaching children about kindness and compassion." (The photo shows the two canine stars of the film, Bizzo, left, and Cooey, right.)
It's A Dog's Day joins the lineup of PAHS' humane education programs that include Mow Wow Animals, Kiddies 2 Kitties, Critter Clubs, Animals Everywhere, and Adoptables Art. Plans are under way to distribute the film to California schools.
PAHS at Bone-Appetit!
The evening of Wednesday, August 19, PAHS participated with a booth at Bone-Appetit, a featured event for Dog Days in Redwood City sponsored by Shops on Broadway. We distributed information about the PAHS 2 PAWS program for canine volunteers in our humane education programs as well as the PAHS library of disaster preparedness materials. We had the unique opportunity of making friends with some wonderful canines and their people.
PAHS at Special V.I.P. Tasting Event!
PAHS, along with all other members of the Palo Alto Chamber of Commerce, received a special invitation to a V.I.P. tasting event held on Tuesday, August 12, at the new Fire Oak & Barley restaurant on California Avenue in Palo Alto.
We very much enjoyed the delicious samples and had the pleasure of meeting other members of the Chamber. It was a fun and festive event also attended by Palo Alto City officials.
Here's Toby, PAHS' Latest PAWS 2 PAHS Volunteer!
Toby is a 3-year old Labradoodle who has recently joined the PAHS education volunteer crew. He and his people, mom Kristina and daughters Alexandra and Samantha, accompanied PAHS humane educator Leonor Delgado Tuesday, August 4, at the Palo Alto Community Child Care (PACCC) Junior Varsity Sports Adventure camp for entering first- to third-graders.
These campers were intrigued by Toby's fun and gentle spirit and his masterful performance of a variety of tricks. They learned about dog safety and best practices care for dogs and shared their experiences with us about special moments with their own pet dogs.
Rhea and Shannon Join PAHS at Hi 5!
More than 40 children participating in two YMCA of Silicon Valley Hi 5 summer camps, one in Los Altos and the other in Palo Alto, had the special opportunity of meeting Rhea and Shannon on Friday, July 31. The young campers, who are poised to enter kindergarten and first grade in the fall, were eager to learn about Shannon, a gentle golden retriever who is also a therapy dog, belonging to Rhea Sampson, a local storyteller and singer who gives classes in theater arts.
The campers watched with anticipation as Shannon did her tricks for treats, good-naturedly endured a tooth-brushing session, and enjoyed having her fur brushed. They also learned how Shannon rescued a younger abandoned puppy. Then, they sang songs about Shannon and their own pets while Rhea accompanied them on her guitar and Shannon got the chance to watch them. As a final activity, all the campers met Shannon personally—Shannon very much liked getting petted by all those campers!
Final Critter Club Session at Beechwood
Monday, July 27, was the final session of Critter Club, PAHS' community outreach humane education program, for the third-grade class at Beechwood School. All students were pleased to greet Rookie, PAHS' favorite canine friend, again as he joined in the ceremonies of presenting the students with diplomas for their participation and taking class photographs.
PAHS staff and volunteers were pleased to be able to offer Critter Club for the third summer at Beechwood. This year, the five-week program included: a general introduction to pets and pet care; a presentation about pet cats, community cats, and special care for pre-wean kittens; a lesson about dogs with special emphasis on humane treatment of dogs and safety issues around dogs; a discussion about factory farming vs. small farms and backyard farm animals; and the final session—a wrap-up of concepts presented throughout the program and awarding of diplomas and class and individual photos.
We hope to continue to offer Critter Club to more third-graders at Beechwood. Our experience there every year has been immensely rewarding.
PAHS at STEAM!
On Friday, July 24, PAHS visited with a group of students at STEAM interested in creating a project to help local animals. STEAM, a year-round program offered to middle-school students through Foundation for a College Education in East Palo Alto, features a hands-on learning curriculum that helps students acquire the basics of design thinking so they can implement meaningful projects in technology and the art.
The very enthusiastic team of students who worked with PAHS' Humane Educator Leonor Delgado will apply design thinking to the planning and implementation of their project, yet to be determined. These students asked excellent questions about services offered for animals in the community and community-based programs at shelters and local organizations to help animals and people interested in helping animals.
We at PAHS are looking forward to seeing what these students will design and how their effort will impact conditions for animals in their community.
Critter Club Update—Meet Puff!
The Monday, July 20, session of Critter Club at Beechwood School was dedicated to learning about farm animals in vastly different situations—as backyard pets and animals housed and treated humanely on small family farms in stark contrast with the inhumane and unhealthy conditions common to factory farms.
The third-grade class participating in Critter Club first viewed the video My Friends at the Farm, narrated by actor Casey Affleck and produced by Farm Sanctuary, an organization that operates three havens for rescued and rehabilitated farm animals—one located in Watkins Glen, New York, and two in California, in Orland and Los Angeles. This video not only reviewed the history and actuality of factory farming in the United States, but also showed the impact of factory farming on the environment and offered alternative solutions and farming methods.
Following viewing and discussing of the video, the students had the unique opportunity of meeting two sisters, Paloma and Vivia G., accompanied by their father, Martin, with Puff ("the Magic Chicken"), who lives with the family and the family dog. Paloma and Vivia described their experiences with Puff—what they do to care for Puff and how Puff interacts with them. Other students in the classroom who also had chickens as backyard pets shared their experiences throughout the girls' presentation. All the students asked many interesting questions. At the end of the session, those students who wanted to meet Puff "in person" had the chance to stroke and pet her.
Critter Club at Beechwood School
New sessions for Critter Club, PAHS' community educational outreach program for pre-school and elementary school, began on June 29 at Beechwood School in Menlo Park. PAHS has been recruiting local students as volunteers to participate in educational presentations, and this summer's Critter Club sessions feature two such special sessions. The recent July 6 session about cats was one of these.
Joanna Tang, a student currently attending UC-Davis, and her mother Jean Hsia, both of whom represented the local rescue organization Peninsula CatWorks, joined PAHS humane educator Leonor Delgado at this session. Leonor first discussed caring for pet cats and helping stray and feral cats in the community. Joanna and Jean then gave a slide and video presentation about the special care given pre-wean kittens and answered the students' questions about their experiences with pre-weans and their work socializing young kittens. Joanna and Jean also spoke about Peninsula CatWorks' voucher program to spay and neuter pet cats and kittens.
Joining PAHS, as well, was Reine Flexer, a PAHS volunteer who organizes local feeders and trappers. Cats trapped by Reine and other volunteers are spayed or neutered and examined and treated as needed at veterinary clinics participating in the PAHS Spay-Neuter and Animal Rescue Fund programs. Reine also foster cats and kittens and socializes them to make them ready for adoption. Accompanying Reine was her rescued cat Livy, an "older gentleman" who was very happy to meet the third graders and purred contentedly as the students petted him at the end of the session.
Successful Cat Food Drive in South Palo Alto!
Palo Alto High School student Michael T. organized a very successful cat food drive for PAHS on June 30 and July 1 on Greer Road near Colorado Avenue in south Palo Alto. Donors were treated to snacks and lemonade. All monetary contributions will go toward spay-neuter of community cats and kittens, and the good-quality food donated will make colonies of community cats very happy, not to mention the people who care for them.
Thank you to Michael!
Yappy Hour at Sheraton a Smashing Success!
The poolside dining area at the Palo Alto Sheraton was filled to capacity the evening of Tuesday, June 23, at the summer 2015 Yappy Hour held to benefit PAHS. A large number of guests brought their canine companions, while others simply admired the large variety of dogs. This Yappy Hour was the best attended of all we've had, and guests wanted to know when the next one would be scheduled. PAHS thanks the Sheraton management and staff for their generosity and the excellent service offered to all.
PAHS Invites Palo Alto Perry to Visit Animal Services!
Accepting PAHS' invitation, the afternoon of Friday, June 12, Palo Alto Perry stopped by Palo Alto Animal Services (PAAS). He met and greeted visitors and adoptable animals alike. Although the rabbits and dogs appreciated meeting Perry, the highlight of Perry's visit was at the cat wing of the shelter, where all the feline residents showed special interest in getting to know him. Heidi, shown to the left, was especially friendly toward Perry.
Perry also toured downtown Palo Alto with the PAHS staff. He stopped at Peet's Coffee and Tea on University Avenue, a business that has shown strong support for PAHS. Peet's staff members were delighted to have Perry at their store.
Last Session of Critter Club at Head Start San Mateo
Thursday, June 11, marked the end of a two-week-long series of Critter Club sessions offered at the Fair Oaks (East Menlo Park) San Mateo County Head Start site. A total of 36 very young students (ages 4 and 5) learned about caring for their pets at home, focusing on what their pets need to be happy and healthy and how to treat tame animals with love and affection. They also learned how dogs, cats, and rabbits see, hear, and use their sense of smell differently from the way we do.
The children met and petted Livy, an older rescued cat who is especially sweet and mellow belonging to one of our TNR (trap-neuter-return) volunteers, Reine. They met Rhea and her dog Shannon, a gentle therapy Golden Retriever, and sang along with Rhea as she played her guitar, at the same time reinforcing what they had learned about pet care and dogs in particular. In the final session of June 11, students took class photos sporting their Critter Club t-shirts and met Henry, an older rabbit who used to live at the Fair Oaks center—they particularly enjoyed observing and petting Henry.
PAHS will continue to offer the Critter Club at San Mateo Head Start. Plans are for future sessions at the East Palo Alto site in fall 2015.
Thank You, Patxi's!
PAHS staff, volunteers, and supporters greeted each other at the dinner hour at Patxi's Palo Alto on Wednesday, June 10. We sat down to enjoy a wonderful pizza, pasta, and salad extravaganza, as well as good conversation. Patxi's is donating a percentage of proceeds from all sales that day—eat-in, takeout, and take to cook at home—to PAHS.
PAHS thanks Patxi's for their generosity. Their donation will help us take care of many needy animals in our community through our spay-neuter and veterinary help programs.
Our Palo Alto Daily News Column: "Palo Alto Humane Society: Perry the Stuffed to visit Palo Alto Animal Services"
In our latest column published June 5, PAHS Executive Director Carole Hyde explains that Perry, Palo Alto's goodwill ambassador and stand-in for the real Perry, one of two donkeys living in Barron Park, has been invited by PAHS to visit Palo Alto Animal Services. Perry's appearance there on Friday, June 12, will include meeting young students in the PAHS–PAHS Kiddies 2 Kitties shelter-based reading program and joining PAHS in advocating for adoption of shelter animals.
Carole also highlights a recent case in which PAHS has helped provide much-needed veterinary care for a rescued dog. She mentions an upcoming event at Patxi's Pizza in downtown Palo Alto in which PAHS will be a beneficiary of proceeds from sales of pizza and other food selections all day on Wednesday, June 10.
Click here to read the column in its entirety.
PAHS Receives the Heart of Trinity Award!
Fifth graders at Trinity School in Menlo Park presented the Heart of Trinity Award to PAHS in a special assembly the morning of Monday, June 1. The award, given annually by the fifth grade graduating class to organizations that do good in the world, was for animal compassion this year. Representing PAHS at the award ceremony were Jaye Bergen (Program Associate) and Leonor Delgado (Humane Educator) Trinity gave PAHS the award "because [PAHS] rescue[s] animals, give[s] them homes, and educate[s] people about animals."
The award consists of a plaque and a commendation letter as well as a monetary contribution from the fifth grade that represents their earnings in the Trinity's Penny Panic school-wide fundraiser. In Penny Panic participating students raise money for different charitable organizations by doing chores, having lemonade stands, washing cars, and performing other helpful tasks. Jaye and Leonor addressed the school assembly to thank the students for the award and described the different kinds of endeavors undertaken by PAHS to help animals and educate the community about animals' needs. They also visited the fifth grade class to answer questions about PAHS.
We thank Trinity's fifth graders for their concern for the humane treatment of animals!
Dogs in the Quad at Carlmont High!
Students in the throes of finals week at Carlmont High School in Belmont experienced a brief respite from concentrated studying during the lunch period on Thursday, May 28, when a contingent of therapy dogs visited the campus. The event was the brainchild of student volunteers at Carlmont (with the approval of their advisor) and was brought to fruition through a joint effort of Palo Alto Humane Society and Peninsula Humane Society and SPCA (PHS/SPCA) in Burlingame. PHS/SPCA provided the dogs through its therapy dog program.
College campuses often offer the calming presence of therapy dogs to provide relief for students during stressful times such as finals week. Carlmont students were eager to pilot this practice on their campus, and the results were phenomenal. All the dogs received lots of attention from enthusiastic students, and they in turn reciprocated with affection as only canine friends can. The student volunteers are planning to offer the same kind of opportunity to de-stress in the company of therapy dogs during finals weeks in the next academic year.
PAHS Visits The Dancing Cat
On Sunday, May 24, PAHS staff and volunteers paid a visit to the new San Jose-based cat café and adoption center, The Dancing Cat. Our visit was very enjoyable and satisfying. Friendly felines wandered about and solicited attention from visitors. The atmosphere was not only calming for everyone, people and cats alike, but also featured splendid feline-themed art and decorations as well as soft drinks and snacks and cat toys for sale. Since the opening on May 21, more than half the cats temporarily residing at the café have been adopted.
Make sure to visit soon! Go to The Dancing Cat Web site to sign up to meet the cats.
Critter Club at San Mateo Head Start in East Menlo Park
PAHS began its spring session of Critter Club in partnership with San Mateo County Head Start at its East Menlo Park/Redwood City site on May 19. The May 21 sessions were a special treat for the children, featuring representatives from our PAHS 2 PAWS program—Rhea and Shannon, Rhea's Golden Retriever.
Shannon showed the children how dogs can perform special tricks and obey commands as well as participated in petting sessions highlighting safe ways to approach and get to know a new dog. Rhea, an accomplished local guitarist, singer, and storyteller who teaches in San Mateo County-sponsored programs, told stories about Shannon and led the children in a sing-along about care for and kindness to dogs and other pets.
Brownies Visit Kiddies 2 Kitties and Make Donation
The Wednesday, May 20, session of Kiddies 2 Kitties at SVACA was a special one for PAHS and the shelter. Brownie Troop 61841 from Mountain View came to learn about the shelter and read to the cats as well as make a special donation to the shelter. The Brownies donated the money from their sale of Girl Scout cookies as well as needed supplies for the shelter animals. Some showed up dressed especially for the occasion in their Lion King costumes! Thank you to Troop 68141!
PAHS Rallies for SV Gives!
Tuesday, May 5, was Giving Day for Silicon Valley Gives, and PAHS joined a group of nonprofits in Santa Clara to rally for the cause and spread the word about our programs. NBC TV filmed the event for the 6 o'clock news.
It isn't too late to give to PAHS—giving is a year-round campaign! To learn more about PAHS and our SV Gives campaign, go to:
http://svgives.razoo.com/story/Palo-Alto-Humane-Society PAHS and the animals thank you!
Puff Joins PAHS at the 2015 May Fête Parade!
Puff came along for the ride in her own wagon topped with a cage specially adapted to meet all of her needs, and she was calm throughout, not to mention appreciative of the crowd's cheers and numerous photo shots. Puff joined PAHS staff and volunteers in this annual celebration of May and spring that has become a tradition in Palo Alto. This year's parade, held Saturday, May 2, was the 93rd, and its theme of "No Space to Alienate" is a message wholeheartedly supported by PAHS—"Animals are not aliens! They are our friends and companions, so let us learn how best to respect and care for them and promote their wellbeing."
Look forward to learning more about Puff as she and her people join our humane education team this summer. She will be our special guest at presentations focusing on the humane treatment of farm animals.
Latest PAHS Column in the Palo Alto Daily News—"May Fête Fun Saturday for Palo Alto Humane Society"
In this latest column for the Palo Alto Daily News, published April 29, Carole Hyde, our Executive Director, describes PAHS' long history of participation in the Palo Alto's annual May Fête Parade. Ninety years ago, in one of the first parades, PAHS' pony Sheik joined our marchers. We now depend on canine and other animal friends to accompany us.
Carole highlights PAHS' 107 years of service to the community and invites our supporters to march with us or attend the parade on May 2. She also sends out an appeal to participate in the Silicon Valley Gives campaign of May 5.
To read the article in its entirety and see the photo of our award-winning float from last year's parade, click here.
Castro School Thanks Volunteers
On Thursday, April 30, the Mariano Castro School in Mountain View held a thank-you celebration for all volunteers and participants in special programs for students. PAHS was among the invitees—this spring semester we offered a five-week Critter Club program to students enrolled in Beyond the Bell (after-school academic enrichment) from grades 4, 5, and 6, and we're in discussions about additional sessions during this coming academic year.
PAHS thanks the staff of Mariano Castro and Beyond the Bell for the opportunity to meet and work with their students. We're looking forward to further collaboration.
PAHS at Pet-A-Palooza!
PAHS partnered with the Palo Alto Library for this year's Pet-A-Palooza held at Town and Country Village in Palo Alto on Saturday, April 25. Pet-A-Palooza- sponsored booths and tables represented animal-related organizations and businesses, and dogs and their people participated in a fun Strut Your Mutt contest for best-dressed and most original costumes.
The PAHS/Library booth featured books about animals for readers of all ages as well as information about PAHS' spay-neuter and veterinary programs and community outreach activities in humane education. PAHS staff and volunteers were on hand to answer questions about our work and Library staff was available to advise parents and their children about suitable books and interesting activities at the library for readers of all ages.
Pet-A-Palooza 2015 was a fun and lively event for all. Hope to see you there next year!
PAHS on NBC Nightly News!
In the 6:00 p.m. newscast on Thursday, April 23, PAHS Executive Director Carole Hyde weighed in on the issues surrounding the outdated conditions to house animals at the Palo Alto municipal animal shelter (Palo Alto Animal Services). She mentioned the need for rebuilding the shelter as a space more appealing to both the animals housed there and human visitors. Click here to see the broadcast.
PAHS Next Vista Videos!
PAHS volunteers Jack B., Jack L., Marcelo S. (project lead), Cameron S. and Tyler W. (co-narrator and project lead), students at Junípero Serra High School in San Mateo, created a Next Vista service video about PAHS. Highlighted were PAHS' intervention to promote animal welfare (including advocacy for animals, spay-neuter, and emergency veterinary care) and humane education programs (with a focus on Critter Club, Kiddies 2 Kitties, Adoptables Art, and Mow Wow Animals). The video went live this past March 25. Thanks to these students' efforts and dedication, more PAHS Facebook friends and Internet users are learning about PAHS. Click here to see this video.
Next Vista is a site for students from all over the world to submit creative and service-based videos. The video created by this group of five isn't the first about Palo Alto Humane Society to be submitted to Next Vista by Serra students. In 2014 another group of students from Serra also made a video that underscores PAHS' efforts to help animals. The video was made with the additional support of the Rotary Club and was a finalist in a Next Vista competition. Created by Brett A., Alex B., Chase C., Chris S. (narrator and editor), Tyler V., and Spencer W., the video had its debut showing at the school, giving the students' peers a unique opportunity to learn about PAHS. Please view this video as well by clicking here.
Closing Sessions of Critter Club at Mariano Castro School
On Thursday, March 12, members of the PAHS team—Patty Hurley (educational advisor), Maureen Allen (board member and Rookie’s person), Rookie (PAHS’ favorite PAHS to PAWS dog), and Leonor Delgado (humane educator) met for the last time with two groups of students from the Beyond the Bell program at the Mariano Castro School in Mountain View.
Wearing their Critter Club t-shirts, the students gathered for group photos. Each student received a certificate for having participated in Critter Club. Both groups reviewed basic concepts about pet care and, in particular, caring for dogs and learning to recognize when it is safe to meet and greet a new dog. They also contributed to a discussion about “working dogs” and the important ways in which dogs and other domestic animals help people.
PAHS at Monta Loma’s VIP Reading Day
PAHS Humane Educator Leonor Delgado joined other community representatives on March 6 to participate in Monta Loma School’s VIP Reading Day. Monta Loma is an elementary school in the Whisman School District in Mountain View, and PAHS has participated in the annual VIP Reading Day for the past three years by reading to young students and donating an animal-themed book.
Leonor met with a second-grade class to read My Cat, Boots/Mi gatita, Botas, a bilingual storybook by Darlene Garcia Gardner that describes the love and friendship between the author and her cat. Students listened to the story in English and Spanish and contributed their ideas about pet care and their own pets in question and answer sessions before and after the reading.
“Adoptables Art” Now Open for Viewing
“Adoptables Art,” a program jointly sponsored by the Palo Alto Unified School District and Palo Alto Humane Society, is hosting its first show of student art at the offices of the school district at 25 Churchill Avenue in Palo Alto. Art featured is based on student paintings of adoptable dogs interpreted from photographs of these dogs.
The paintings are colorful and whimsical or serious, and they capture each dog’s special qualities. Visitors to the opening reception for the exhibit held the late afternoon of Wednesday, March 4, marveled at the unique qualities of each painting.
Please make sure to stop by the school district offices to admire these unique and original paintings created by 4th and 5th graders at Duveneck Elementary School. The show will be open to the public through April 6.
PAHS at Mountain View Day Worker Center
On Monday, March 2, PAHS Humane Educator Leonor Delgado addressed a group of community workers at the Day Worker Center of Mountain View about ways in which they could help their own pets and homeless/community cats they may encounter in their neighborhoods or on work assignments. The discussion, held in both English and Spanish, centered on PAHS’ efforts to control the stray population through spay-neuter and TNR (trap-neuter-return). Also highlighted and explained in depth were PAHS’ safety net programs—Animal Rescue Fund (ARF), which provides emergency veterinary care to homeless animals and Pet Emergency Treatment (PET) Help, which gives grants to needy pet owners (low-income residents, people with disabilities, veterans, and people who are unemployed).
PAHS’ February Column in the Palo Alto Daily News—“Humane Society, schools collaborate for ‘Adoptables Art’ ”
In this column written by Leonor Delgado, the PAHS humane educator, the general public is invited to the March 4 opening reception of Adoptables Art, a collaborative endeavor from PAHS and the Palo Alto Unified School District (PAUSD)—the reception is scheduled for 4:30 to 6:00 p.m. at the PAUSD offices at 25 Churchill Avenue in Palo Alto. The column also traces the inception of the program and highlights the efforts of 4th and 5th grade students at the Duveneck School.
These students transformed touching photographs of adoptable dogs in search of their forever homes into equally touching original paintings that capture each dog’s expression and demeanor. The paintings are remarkable in their sensitivity and use of color and lines. We’re looking forward to greeting PAHS supporters and animal lovers at the reception.
To read the column in its entirety, click here.
Critter Club Kickoff at Mariano Castro School
On Thursday, February 5, PAHS began another series of Critter Club sessions, this time at the Mariano Castro School’s Beyond the Bell program in Mountain View. Students who participated were divided into two groups—third graders in one and fourth and fifth graders in the other. In both groups, students presented information about the animal companions living with them at home or the kinds of animal companions they would like to have. Some of their compositions and drawings were quite imaginative, as in the example on the left.
The students learned to distinguish between those animals who are suitable as companions and those who aren’t. They also talked about the ways in which they cared for their animal companions and some of the special needs of the pets they have or would like to have.
Critter Club will continue at Mariano Castro throughout the month of February and into March. Students will meet and greet a friendly dog, cat, and rabbit and learn about their needs and care. They will also learn about ways in which they can help homeless and abandoned animals in their neighborhoods.
PAHS Receives Special Donation!
Sarah Larson recently held a bake sale to raise money for PAHS to be used to help needy animals. Here is what she wrote to us: “My name is Sarah Larson, and I am a 3rd grader at Almond Elementary School in Los Altos. In April 2014, our family adopted two small Chihuahua-mix dogs named Reggie and Lily. I fell in love with them immediately. During the most recent holiday school break, I decided that I would like to do something to help other animals who don’t have a home. I decided to hold a bake sale to raise money for the Palo Alto Humane Society. My mom baked a lot of treats: cookies, brownies, and cupcakes. We set up the sale outside on our sidewalk for an afternoon and earned $57.00. I was happy to be able to give the money to help other animals.”
PAHS’ First Column for 2015 in the Palo Alto Daily—“ ‘Fix’ that cat, before she litters (and don’t forget Dad)”
Ann Nussbaum, the volunteer coordinator of our Spay/Neuter and CatWorks programs, is the author of PAHS’ first monthly column for the Palo Alto Daily for this year, published in the Saturday, January 24, 2015, edition. Ann is also our resident cat advisor to whom we turn when we have pressing questions about injured homeless cats needing immediate veterinary care or we need spay/neuter advice.
Ann’s advice to the general public rings clearly in the title of the column—“ ‘Fix’ that cat, before she litters (and don’t forget Dad).” In the column, Ann explains the “trap-neuter-return” (TNR) policies now favored by progressive animal shelters and wildlife organizations in working toward reducing the homeless cat population. To read the column in its entirety, please click here.
Kiddies 2 Kitties Participants Donate to SVACA!
Twin sisters Addy and Lila and their younger sister Millie enjoyed their last year’s Kiddies 2 Kitties visit so much that they requested a return visit for the January 21 session at Silicon Valley Animal Control Authority (SVACA). The sisters’ big surprise for the shelter was a cash donation to help the cats—the proceeds from a lemonade sale they had recently held.
PAHS and SVACA thank Addy, Lila, and Millie for their enthusiastic participation in our joint program and for their generosity to the SVACA cats. Way to go!
PAHS Meets with New Frontier USY
The evening of Sunday, January 18, representatives from PAHS met with 30 enthusiastic high-school students from New Frontier USY at Congregation Kol Emeth in Palo Alto. The students, from as far away as Sacramento and Reno, NV, had joined together that day for their Mini-Mission Mitzvah and had gathered in the evening to learn about volunteer opportunities with nonprofit organizations. The students met our Canine Ambassadors Rookie (accompanied by volunteer Maureen Allen) and Lexie (accompanied by office manager Rebecca Marsh) and Carole Hyde, the PAHS Executive Director. Carole addressed the gathering with a brief synopsis of PAHS’ history and community outreach efforts. The students are now drawing up proposals to volunteer for PAHS.
4-H Club at Kiddies 2 Kiddies and PAHS 2 PAWS
Members of the Rolling Hills 4-H Club based in Cupertino visited Silicon Valley Animal Control Authority (SVACA) on December 17, 2014 to learn about shelter cats and cat care as well as read to the cats and kittens through the PAHS–SVACA Kiddies 2 Kitties program. Education advisor and volunteer Patty Hurley and PAHS Humane Educator Leonor Delgado worked with the group.
On January 14 of this year the same club members met with PAHS 2 PAWS Canine Ambassador Lexie and her person, PAHS Office Manager Rebecca Marsh, to learn about dog care and make toys appropriate for rescued and shelter dogs and cats. PAHS and the animals thank these young 4-H Club members for their interest and concern.
Kiddies 2 Kitties Begins at Palo Alto Animal Services!
Friday, January 9, marked the first sessions of Kiddies 2 Kitties, the PAHS reading buddy program, at Palo Alto Animal Services. Staff and volunteers at PAHS, as well as PAHS humane educator Leonor Delgado, were on call to welcome nine students from the Ohlone Elementary School in Palo Alto as the first attendees of the program. Most of the adult cats napped through the readings—perhaps, the students’ voices were very calming to them. All the kittens, however, did not hesitate to show their appreciation and their eagerness to play!
A few of the students have begun working on a “commercial” (video) to advertise some of the animals up for adoption, in particular two white adolescent cats, sisters Sookie and Snow White. PAHS and PAAS are looking forward to sharing this video with the local community.
Local Girl Scouts Earn Animal Shelter Badge with PAHS and SVACA
Troop 61634, from the Juana Briones School in Palo Alto, visited Silicon Valley Animal Control Authority (SVACA) on Wednesday, January 7, to participate in the PAHS–SVACA Kiddies 2 Kitties reading buddy program and to learn how animal shelters operate. All the Scouts (plus two brothers of member Scouts) attended a session about SVACA and caring for shelter animals. The Scouts asked insightful questions about the shelter and the animals housed there. They then spent time reading to the adoptable cats and kittens and helping socialize them—cats and Scouts were equally delighted (as were the brothers)! After completing these activities and delivering a donation of food to the shelter, the Scouts received the Animal Shelter Badge.
Read PAHS’ Final Palo Alto Daily News Column for 2014—“Scouts, Palo Alto Humane Society partner up for pets”
The final PAHS column for 2014 appeared in the Palo Alto Daily News on Saturday, December 27. PAHS Humane Educator Leonor Delgado gave thanks to all the Girl Scout Troops whose Animal Helper badge or Silver Award projects enabled PAHS to help needy local animals. Special thanks were extended to the Scouts in Troop 33147 whose Silver Award project included hands-on work socializing puppies at a local shelter in addition to a lemonade sale directly benefiting the PAHS Spay-Neuter program to help community cats and the production of an excellent educational video, “Taking Care of Your Pet.” Delgado also called on Scouts to contact PAHS to propose projects or request advice in designing animal-related projects.
To read the column in its entirety, click here.
PAHS Thanks Peet’s!
Many thanks to Peet’s Coffee and Tea at the Safeway Shopping Center on El Camino in Menlo Park. This Peet’s shop sponsored PAHS for its annual Holiday Donations program. Visitors to Peet’s for the week up to and including December 24 were encouraged to donate to PAHS, and on December 24 Peet’s matched all donations up to $700. On that day, as well, PAHS volunteers were at Peet’s to speak with customers about PAHS’ efforts to help the animals and to offer donors a special animal-themed tea towel. We wish the staff at Peet’s a happy and healthy New Year!
“Kiddies 2 Kitties” Now at Palo Alto Animal Services!
PAHS is now partnering with Palo Alto Animal Services (PAAS) to offer our popular reading buddy program, Kiddies 2 Kitties. Students in grades 3, 4, and 5 who like cats and want to know more about them as well as practice their reading skills are invited to join us. The students will read aloud to friendly and playful cats and kittens and get the chance to interact (while supervised) with these adoptable felines.
Sessions at PAAS will begin January 9. Click here for more information about available session dates or call Palo Alto Humane Society at (650) 424-1901 or send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up for a session.
Did You Know?
The average number of kittens in a feline litter is between 4-6, and with 3 litters per year that means one cat can produce 12-18 offspring annually.
The average number of puppies in a canine litter is between 6-10, and with 2 litters per year that means one dog can produce 12-20 offspring annually.
6-8 million cats and dogs enter shelters every year with 3-4 million being euthanized, and the numbers are increasing. It is imperative to fix your pets.
Pigs are clean animals with highly developed smell. These are two reasons why having pigs confined in filthy, odorous factory farms is cruel and unusual.
Animals are being abandoned or surrendered to shelters by their owners. We urge you to make room for one more animal companion.
COCOA MULCH is lethal to dogs and cats. It contains THEOBROMINE and smells like chocolate. Do not purchase and advise your friends.
Guinea pigs have difficulty judging heights, so never leave a pet guinea pig alone in a high place such as on a table. Guinea pigs live about 5-8 years.
Shelters are overwhelmed with animals that have been abandoned or surrendered by their owners. If you need help or advice, contact us.
A horse is healthiest when living naturally. Horse shoes prevent necessary flexing of the hoof which allows blood to flow and optimal functioning to take place.
A cat's hearing is much more sensitive than humans and dogs, and a cat can jump 5 times as high as it is tall.
In 1889, Philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche caused a public disturbance in Turin when he attempted to protect a horse from being whipped.
Make room for one more animal companion in your home. Shelters are overwhelmed due to the economic downturn.
Animals are being abandoned or surrendered to shelters by their owners. Shelters are overwhelmed, so please make room for one more.
21% of U.S. households have at least one cat and 95% of all cat owners admit they talk to their cats.
Due to “trends” shelters are overwhelmed with Pit Bulls and Chihuahuas. Urge breeders to stop breeding and pet owners to spay and neuter their pets.
Jane L. Stanford was an honorary member of PAHS.
An adult dog has 42 teeth.
A domesticated pig has approximately 15,000 taste buds, which is more than any other mammal, including humans.
A dog's heart beats between 70 and 120 times a minute, compared with a human heart which beats 70 to 80 times a minute.
Chihuahuas are born with a 'molera', or 'soft spot' like a human baby, which usually closes as they mature.
The average lifespan of a Quarter Horse is between 25 - 30 years. The oldest recorded horse was from England, "Old Billy", and lived until the age of 62.
Pigs are very intelligent animals, often regarded by scientists as being the most intelligent of livestock.
A hot car is no place for a pet. Leaving a dog or cat in a parked car during the warmer months can cause serious injury or death within minutes.
Temperatures inside a car can reach 120° in a matter of minutes, even with the windows partially open. Shade and having water will do little to help.
The safest place for your companion is in the coolest part of the house with plenty of fresh water to drink.
If you see a companion animal inside a parked car during hot weather, and they appear in distress, call animal control or the police immediately.
Signs of distress include: Heavy panting, glazed eyes, unsteadiness, listlessness, vomiting and a over-red or purple tongue.
Don't force your companion animal to exercise after a meal in hot, humid weather. Do it in the cool of the early morning or evening.
If you and your dog go to the beach, be sure you can find shade and plenty of fresh water. Rinse her off after she has been in salt water.
With only hot air to breathe, a dog's process of cooling through panting fails. A body temperature of 107 degrees may cause brain damage or death.
If a dog is overheated, provide emergency first aid by applying TEPID water all over the body, and then gradually applying cooler water. Seek veterinary care.
A dog's paws can be burnt by hot pavement. Do not make them stand on hot pavement for long periods and keep walks on hot asphalt to a minimum.
Be sensitive to old and overweight animals, and those with heart or lung diseases. They should be kept indoors in air conditioning and out of hot weather.
Snub-nosed dogs (like Pekingese, Bull dogs, Boston terriers, Lhasa apsos, Shih tzus, and Pugs) should be kept indoors in air conditioning and out of hot weather.
A blog by Carole Hyde, Director
of the Palo Alto Humane Society
For Lost Pets or Animal Emergencies
Palo Alto Humane Society is not an animal shelter.
Palo Alto Animal Services serves as the shelter and animal control agency for Palo Alto, Los Altos, and Los Altos Hills, and can be reached at (650) 496-5971. Their 24-hour hotline is (650) 329-2413.
East Palo Alto residents should contact Peninsula Humane Society at (650) 340-7022
Mountain View residents should contact Silicon Valley Animal Control Authority at (408) 764-0344.
Wildlife issues should be directed to Peninsula Humane Society at (650) 340-7022 or Palo Alto Animal Services at (650-496-5971).
Help Save Our Local Honeybees! Bee Swarm Removal (free)
The bees that are removed are not killed. After an established colony is removed (from walls, roofs, trees, etc.), it is adopted out to a beginner beekeeper who is a member of the San Mateo County Bee Guild to or another community resident who will care for that colony.