FAQ

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What Does It Mean To Be a 501(c) 3 Charity?

Non profit organizations are regulated by the Internal Revenue Service and the state agency where the entity was formed. Articles of incorporation filed must include specific language that states the organization will use any funds they receive for the specific cause designated in the articles. Additionally, it states if at any point the entity is dissolved, that any existing assets are to be contributed to another non profit of the same cause. Because non profits are not for financial gain of any person involved, Federal tax law recognizes NPO’s as exempt from Federal income tax under 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. If the gross receipts of an non profit exceed $25,000, they are required to file the appropriate tax filings which are made public through Guidestar here. Additionally, the state of California has a master list of exempt organizations they recognize. This list is updated monthly and can be found here. When a rescue is an approved 501 (c) 3 charity and donations that you give the rescue including adoption donations are tax deductible. Click here to view or download the Charitable Contribution IRS Info Chart.

How Can I Help?

You can significantly help A Home 4 Ever Rescue by volunteering or donating. You can also take a look at our growing list of ways you can help by going here.

HypoAllergenic Dogs

Non Allergetic Dog breeds recommended for people who have allergies to dogs. One person’s allergies may vary greatly from another person’s. It is always wise to visit the dog to see if you are allergic to it before you commit. Just because a dog is listed here does not mean it will be good for you personally. This is only meant as a general reference of dogs that are often good. Please see the list of HypoAllergenic Dogs here.

Adoption Fees

Adoption Fees run anywhere from $200 to $300 depending on the dog. All fees and donations go 100% to our rescued dogs and their needs. Please see more information here.

Fostering Information

Animals are fostered for a variety of reasons. Some are too young for adoption, some need a home in which to recover after a medical procedure, some are pregnant or nursing, and some need more socialization. Foster families provide the love and stability these animals need to be happy and healthy, both mentally and physically. When an animal has been in a foster home, it is more confident and social; therefore it transitions into its new home with ease! We have a limited amount of kennel space, so when foster families take in animals, they are also helping other animals by opening up a kennel. There are many animals in need, so the more animals we can take in the better! Read more information about fostering by going here.

Why Is It Important To Neuter My Male Dog?

Simply put, neutered dogs and cats live healthier, happier, and longer lives. Since our pets cannot make the decision to neuter for themselves, they rely on their owners to look out for their best. Neutering is a term used to describe the surgical removal of male reproductive organs/testicles. This greatly reduces the often sexually driven behaviors such as roaming, digging, humping, marking and fighting. Furthermore, neutering your pet greatly decreases or completely eliminates certain health problem such as testicular, prostatic and rectal cancers, and hernias. Aside from health and behavior benefits, another very important reason to neuter you pet is to help curb the massive pet overpopulation crisis. To put it in perspective, everyday 10,000 babies are born in the United States, and 70,000 puppies and kittens are born. Only one out of five of these find their way into a responsible home. Approximately 14 million dogs, cats, and rabbits end up in shelters every year in this country alone. Only one in four makes it out alive. Clearly, you can save lives by neutering your pet. Here are a few colorful myths about neutered pets: PERSONALITY Myth: Neutering my dog will change his personality. Fact: Your pet’s personality will not change much, if any, once he is neutered. In fact any minimal change that does take place will be for the better. For example, neutered cats almost instantly stop crying and howling in the middle of the night to get out to mate and are less aggressive, even during play. Your pet will be a more loving companion because he is not preoccupied with breeding and fighting. LAZINESS Myth: Neutering my pet will make him fat and lazy. Fact: Neutered pets are not fat and lazy. Too many calories and not enough exercise make pets fat and lazy, regardless if they are neutered or not. The good news is, however, is that most neutered pets need fewer calories to sustain their body weight. This means that they probably won’t need to eat as much but will still need plenty of healthy exercise to keep their weight normal. EMASCULATION Myth: My male dog will feel emasculated if I have him neutered. Fact: Neutered pets do not feel emasculated. That is a human trait. On the contrary, they are relieved they no longer have to constantly think about searching for a female in heat. They are more focused, easier to train and content. Think about it… you would not want to be incessantly frustrated to mate, and if you were a pet you would be greatly relieved to have such an overwhelming, frustrating drive eliminated. PROTECTION Myth: Neutered dogs are not good protection dogs. Fact: Neutered pets are better protection animals because if an intruder opens the door and there is a female in heat (which can be detected up to three miles away with our pet’s amazing sense of smell) in the neighborhood, your neutered pet will NOT choose mating over protecting you. Pets protect their owners partly instinctually, and partly because they love them—neutered or not. PAIN & RISK OF DEATH Myth: Castration is very painful for dogs and cats and my pet might die during the surgery. Fact: Neutering is a relatively short, easy surgery, which is commonly performed and with today’s pain management and quality anesthetic is considered a short, safe surgical procedure. In fact, most dogs are completely normal within 24 to 48 hours after the surgery. EXPENSE Myth: Neutering is too expensive. Fact: There are lots of low cost clinics available.  Remember, the costs of NOT neutering your pet are way greater since they are more destructive to your belongings. Just a few of the reasons to neuter your pet:

  • Approximately 80% of all pets hit by cars are unneutered males.
  • Neutered dogs get along better with other dogs.
  • Neutered pets live longer because they have fewer health problems such as testicular or rectal cancer.
  • Neutered pets require fewer veterinary bills.
  • Neutering reduces sexual frustration so your pet will be friendlier and more relaxed. Neutered cats and dogs are less likely to mark their territory.
  • Neutered pets live longer.
  • Neutered pets are better protection animals because they are not consumed with roaming the streets to mate.
  • Neutered pets have fewer behavioral problems such as digging, fighting and escaping.

Article by Dr. Karen Halligan

Why Is It Important To Spay My Female Dog?

Every year, tens of thousands of female dogs and cats die from breast cancer, ovarian cancer, uterine cancer, uterine infections and difficult pregnancies. Most people think that veterinarians recommend spaying and neutering solely to help the pet overpopulation crisis. While this is certainly a major reason to spay, there are numerous major health benefits to doing it as well. Spaying is the surgical removal of the reproductive organs, uterus and ovaries from a female animal. Spaying can be safely performed on animals as young as 8 weeks of age. Pregnant animals and those in heat can also be spayed, although the risk of complication is slightly higher.

  • Spaying your cat or dog before she has her first heat cycle, which is usually at 6 to 7 months of age, will decrease her chances of developing breast cancer to almost zero.
  • Spaying eliminates the chance of your pet developing a potentially life-threatening infection of the uterus called pyometra.
  • Spaying eliminates the mood swings and undesirable behavior that female cats and dogs display during their heat cycles, such as messy “spotting,” pacing, crying and trying to escape.
  • Spaying greatly increases the lifespan of your pet.
  • Spaying eliminates the chances of your pet from dying of uterine or ovarian cancer.
  • Spayed pets have fewer vet bills.
  • Spaying directly helps decrease the number of animals that are euthanized at the shelters and pounds.
  • For every human born in the U.S., 15 dogs and 45 cats are also born!

Here are a few colorful myths about spayed pets: MIRACLE OF BIRTH Myth: My kids need to experience the miracle of birth. Fact: Most animals deliver in the middle of the night by themselves. Kids can experience the birthing process by watching a video instead of at the expense of the family pet. Furthermore, this irresponsible act of bringing excess pets into a world in which already euthanizes 75% of them deludes your children from the reality of the pet overpopulation crisis. IT’S SPECIAL Myth: My pet is a purebred and her personality is so good that I want her to have puppies. Fact: One out of every four pets brought to the shelter is purebreds and most do not find homes. Just because your pet is special there are no guarantees that her offspring will be anything like her. Her lineage, the father’s genes, and vast expenses are just a few of the things to consider. FIND HOMES Myth: I can find homes for all of the puppies or kittens. Fact: Even if you do find homes for the offspring this is one less home for the millions of animals in the shelters waiting to get adopted. PERSONALITY Myth: Spaying will change my female pet’s personality. Fact: The only changes you see will be positive ones. Spayed animals live longer, healthier and happier lives. They have fewer health and behavioral problems. They will still be protective over your home. LAZINESS Myth: My pet will get fat and lazy if I spay her. Fact: Too many calories and not enough exercise cause dogs to become overweight. The good news is that spayed pets need fewer calories so by feeding them less you will cut down on your feeding costs. ONE LITTER Myth: It’s better to allow your female pet to have at least one litter before spaying. Fact: This is grossly untrue. In fact, the exact opposite is true! Your dog will have much less chance of developing cancer of the reproductive organs and mammary tissue by spaying her before her first heat. Letting her have even one litter predisposes her to breast, uterine and ovarian cancer. UNNATURAL Myth: Preventing pets from having babies is unnatural, and therefore they should not be spayed. Fact: Domesticated pets are NOT wild animals. Humans interfered a long time ago with nature by domesticating animals. Once we domesticate something and incorporate it into our modern lives, we are forever responsible for its care; this means giving pets a permanent home. With the current amount of unaltered, homeless pets it is IMPOSSIBLE for every pet born to have a good home. We MUST spay and neuter our pets. Article by Dr. Karen Halligan

What Do I Need In My Pets First Aid Kit?

From dish soap to duct tape, many common household items can provide temporary first aid while you get your pet to the veterinarian. The most important first aid item is your mobile phone, saysDr. Heather Loenser, senior emergency clinician at Crown Veterinary Specialists in Lebanon, NJ, member of the AAHA Board of Directors, and regular guest on Fox News. Dr. Loenser stresses the importance of programming two phone numbers into your mobile device:

  • ASPCA Poison Control Center (888-426-4435):They’re open 24/7 and veterinary toxicologists are standing by to help you in an emergency. “They’re the gold standard for pet owners and veterinarians,” says Dr. Loenser. “These are people I call when I have questions.”
  • The phone number of your nearest emergency veterinary hospital: Know where it is and how to get there in case of emergency. Practice driving there—in a true emergency, this will save precious minutes. Dr. Loenser reminds us, “The sicker the pet, the more apt we are to get lost.”

Also for your mobile device, the Pet First Aid app from the American Red Cross is available to download for 99 cents. The helpful app features an AAHA-accredited veterinary hospital locator as well as useful first aid tips for 25 emergency situations, including heart and respiratory emergencies in addition to the all-too-common pet emergency: poisoning. Once you’ve got your phone programmed and ready for an emergency, read on for Dr. Loenser’s list of common household items to include in your improvised pet first aid kit. Kitchen cabinet first aid Corn starch. If you’ve cut a nail too short or if your pet’s long nail gets snagged and is bleeding, you can use corn starch to slow, and even stop, the bleeding. It works only on nails, not on bleeding skin wounds. Plastic wrap. If your pet has been attacked by another animal and wounded her abdomen or chest, unspool plastic wrap fully around her body as if you were wrapping a watermelon. This keeps her as clean as possible as you drive to the emergency veterinary hospital. It can also prevent a punctured lung from collapsing by keeping air from rushing into the body cavity, which can add another 5 to 10 minutes to keeping her alive. Not every kind of chest or abdominal wound benefits from wrap, but this is especially helpful when you’re worried you might see internal organs coming out through the wound. Wrap is also helpful if stitches from an abdominal surgery, like being spayed, have torn open. Duct tape. If your pet has lacerated or scraped a paw pad, it will bleed a lot. To contain the mess while you drive, slide a sock over the pet’s injured paw, and then wrap that sock in duct tape. You can also use duct tape to keep the plastic wrap mentioned above in place. Put the duct tape on loosely, and do not leave it on for more than 30 minutes. If duct tape is wrapped too tightly, it can cause more damage than if there is no bandage at all. Credit card. To remove a bee stinger, slide the edge of the credit card next to the base of the stinger and gently “massage” it out. This trick does not work when a tick is attached to your pet’s skin. Chicken broth. If your pet has chewed on or licked certain toxic plants (such as dieffenbachia, poinsettia, or jalapeño) and has an irritated mouth, liquid can help to dilute the toxins. Water works, too, but a pet may resist drinking water. This can also work if your pet has chewed on a glow stick or licked a Bufo toad (common among dogs in the Southeast U.S.). Call the ASPCA Poison Control Center immediately after applying the liquid to the irritated area. Dr. Loenser also cautions that if your dog is frothing at the mouth, make sure he’s not having a seizure. Dawn-brand dish soap. The Dawn brand has a gentle degreaser. If your dog has rolled in motor oil, or if your cat has accidentally been given certain canine flea and tick preventives, wash him off with Dawn-brand dish soap. Dr. Loenser urges us to never put canine flea preventive on a cat because a cat is highly sensitive to the active ingredients (pyrethrin and permethrin).  If your pet is suddenly shivering violently, it may be a sign of overdose of flea control, so wash him off immediately with Dawn dish soap and head to your veterinarian. Hydrogen peroxide 3% (dogs only!). If your dog has eaten something poisonous, call ASPCA Poison Control immediately. If you’re instructed by them to induce vomiting, use hydrogen peroxide 3% in the amount instructed for your dog’s weight. Put the liquid in a turkey baster or bulb syringe, or mix it with a little peanut butter or milk, before injecting the solution into your dog’s mouth. Dr. Loenser notes that some Internet sites instruct soaking bread in hydrogen peroxide, but she doesn’t recommend this because hydrogen peroxide often loses potency. Hydrogen peroxide should not be administered to cats. First aid in your closet Necktie or pantyhose. An improvised muzzle, made using a necktie or pantyhose, may be needed if your dog is in pain and fights back if you pick him up. Dr. Loenser has had to send people to the emergency room after they’ve been bitten when trying to help an injured pet. Sock. Remember the duct tape? A sock will be needed to temporarily contain the bleeding from a cut paw pad. A sock is not to be used to stop arterial bleeding (see below for arterial bleeding). Note: If there is arterial bleeding, apply pressure and drive quickly to the veterinarian. If necessary for safe driving, you can tie a bandage with duct tape to the approximate tightness of a blood pressure cuff (not super-tight like a tourniquet). Scarf. Use it to wrap a wounded ear tip to prevent blood from spattering when your pet shakes his head. Fold his ear inside-out and wrap the scarf around the top of his head. Ear tips bleed a lot because they have many blood vessels. T-shirt. If you don’t have plastic kitchen wrap, use a T-shirt to protect a wound to the chest or abdomen. Covering the wound also prevents your pet from making his wound worse. You might use a T-shirt if the wound happens at a dog park, for example, so you can drive directly to the veterinary hospital. Beach towel. Help your older dog stand up by using a beach towel like a sling under the dog’s belly and hoisting up her back legs. This supports walking if you are unable to carry her. Comforter or blanket. Use a blanket as a stretcher to drag a larger dog that you can’t easily carry. It’s safer than pulling on a dog’s limbs or tail. From your human first aid kit Tweezers. To remove a tick, grab it at the base. A veterinarian can remove a tick for you if you’re uncomfortable doing it. Dr. Loenser cautions to never pull out a porcupine quill—it’s a complex procedure best done by a veterinarian. Eye wash. If something is in your pet’s eye and you notice she is blinking or rubbing, wash out her eye with sterile eye wash (or you can use contact lens solution). Sit your dog, point her nose to the ceiling, open her eye, stabilize her head, and squirt the eye wash into the affected eye. If you also have sterile eye lubrication, use it afterwards to keep the eye moisturized. This is easier done with two people: One person stabilizes the dog while the other squirts the eye wash. Gauze and white tape. Use as a temporary bandage before you arrive at the veterinary hospital. Antibiotic ointment. It wards off further contamination before you arrive at the vet. Prevent your pet from licking off the ointment. At the vet, your pet will be fitted with a head cone (also called an Elizabethan collar or E-collar). Just like human first responders still take their patients to the hospital after they’ve administered basic first aid, your pet still needs to go to the veterinarian after you use these tips to try to help them. Larry Kay is an award-winning pet author. His new book, Life’s a Bark: What Dogs Teach Us About Life and Love, will be published in June 2014.

Do You Sell Newborn Puppies?

By California law puppies can not be sold until 8 weeks of age. Until then they need their moms and siblings to teach them how to play and that biting hurts. They also need their siblings for socialization. Read more here.

What Is Your Rehab Center For?

Somewhere near you there is a scared, innocent dog or puppy is being abandoned in a park, on the street, at a dog pound or at a shelter. Many have been abused, are sick, or injured, but now even worse they are alone. Most will be killed at shelters when no one claims them. Sometimes, it may be a dog that needs medical attention. We rescue them and obtain the appropriate medical care. Some are given training, if needed, to unlearn bad habits or just to teach them to trust again. This is where the volunteers with A Home 4 Ever step in to rescue as many of these dogs in need as they can so new loving homes can be found. All they want is to be part of a family, to be a companion, a protector, to be needed, and loved. They want to be with someone, to not be alone. You can read about a dog who is currently in our Rehab Center by going here.

Antibiotic Resistance – How Is It Impacting Our Animals?

By: W. Jean Dodds, DVM, and Adam J. Lassin, DVM

It’s getting a lot of media attention these days. From news articles to health websites, the issue of antibiotic resistance is causing a lot of concern, and rightly so. We mostly hear about it in connection to human medicine, but the fact is, our companion animals are also facing problems with antimicrobial resistance.

Antibiotics and similar antimicrobial agents have been used successfully for decades to treat human and animal patients for infectious diseases. However, these drugs have been used so widely and for so long that the organisms they are designed to inhibit or kill have adapted to them, making the drugs less effective. In short, in both human and veterinary medicine, the major cause of emerging resistant bacteria is the misuse and overuse of antibiotics. Other practices contributing towards resistance include antibiotic use in livestock feed (more on this later). Household use of antibacterials in soaps and other products is also a culprit.

Infectious organisms that develop resistant strains can be classified as bacteria (e.g. methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and pseudointermedius (MRSP)), viruses like canine influenza, fungi and parasites.

Resistant infections most often afflict animals with weakened immune systems, and those with chronic debilitating diseases, cancer, or malnutrition. Resistant infections can also arise due to chronic (long term) use, inappropriate dosing or inappropriate selection of antibiotics.

Those infected with antimicrobial-resistant organisms are more likely to require longer and more costly therapy, and may even die as a result of the infection.

Antimicrobial resistance to one or more drugs is being seen in a growing number of disease-causing organisms (pathogens). Pathogens resistant to multiple antibiotics are considered multi-drug resistant (MDR) or “superbugs”. Exposure to an antibiotic naturally selects for the survival of those microbial organisms that have developed the genes for resistance. This occurs by spontaneous or induced genetic mutation, or by horizontal gene transfer from other bacterial species. Thus, a gene for antibiotic resistance may readily spread through an ecosystem of bacteria.

As resistance towards antibiotics becomes more common, so does the need for new antibiotics. However, there has been a continuing decline in the number of newly approved drugs. Since 2008, only two new antibacterial drugs have been approved for human use. The cost of development, strict FDA testing guidelines, and profit margins are all reasons companies are abandoning the search for new medications. Antibiotic resistance therefore poses a significant clinical threat – and that means there’s a greater need for alternative treatments.

Eating a healthy diet equates to being healthier. This philosophy is no different for our four-legged friends. Providing a high quality balanced diet is the most important preventative tool. The use of appropriate supplements is also key when treating animals with underlying diseases.

When choosing a diet for your animal, keep in mind that antibiotic drugs are also used in animals intended for consumption, such as cattle, sheep, pigs, poultry and fish. The World Health Organization (WHO) has concluded that inappropriate use of antibiotics in animal husbandry is an underlying contributor to the emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance in animals, and that the use of antibiotics as growth promoters in animal feeds should be prohibited. However, the regulation of antibiotic use in food animals has been limited to reducing drug residues in meat, egg and milk products, rather than addressing concerns over the development of antibiotic resistance.

On April 11, 2012, the FDA announced a voluntary program to phase out unsupervised use of drugs as feed additives, and convert approved over-the-counter uses for antibiotics to prescription use only, requiring veterinarian supervision. In December of last year, the FDA announced the commencement of steps to phase out the use of antibiotics for promoting livestock growth.

In the meantime, look for a pet food made from meats that are as cleanly raised as possible. Some premium pet food companies now offer products made from antibiotic-free meats.

Temporary Housing/Pet Assistance

The following is a list of organization that offer some assistance in temporary housing for your pet. This is NOT an endorsement and we cannot guarantee these groups will be able to help. Please contact the group directly for information about the types of services they offer.

TEMPORARY PET HOUSING:

1. Rancho Coastal Humane Society (760) 753-6413 – (Encinitas, CA) The Animal Safe House Program houses pets for survivors of domestic violence (and veterans). This program does not require that a DV victim be entering a shelter; they will accept the animal for 2-week increments (for as long as needed) while the victim is receiving some kind of support services. This program can help DV victims get in touch with appropriate social services with their in-house social services referral network.
Website: http://rchumanesociety.org

2. Orange County SPCA (714) 964-4445 – This program is available to Orange County residents and animals. The Animal Safehouse Program temporarily houses pets of DV victims.
Website: http://orangecountyspca.org

3. Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control (800) 253-3555 or (844) 533-7738 – The Los Angeles Safety Net Program offers temporary pet housing to DV victims.
Website: http://animalcare.lacounty.gov

4. Haven! California, Inc. (818) 793-2111 – Houses pets for DV victims. Must leave a message on their hotline for a return call.
Website: http://haven.ca.org

5. Keep Your Dog Helpline (213) 403-0129 – Helps people keep their dog out of shelters. They offer short-term boarding, medical care assistance, low-cost or no-cost spay/neuter programs, dog food, vaccinations, license fee assistance, and small fence/home repairs needed to keep the dog out of the shelter. You must leave a message on the hotline for a return call.

6. PATH (323) 644-2216 – A homeless shelter in Hollywood that has a separate animal center for resident’s pets. You must leave a message for a return call.
Email: path@epath.org

7. The TANA Foundation (611) 946-9212 – (Lancaster, CA – Located within Los Angeles County) This privately run boarding facility offers low-cost daily boarding for dogs only. They charge $10/day for a single dog and $18/day for two dogs.
Website: http://thetanafoundation.org
Email: tana@as.net

8. PAWS/LA (213) 741-1950 – Only for Los Angeles residents who are disables by a life-threatening illness (P.A.D. Program) or the elderly (P.A.C.E. Program) with pets they would like to keep but need assistance with. PAWS/LA provides temporary foster care, veterinary care, animal transport, pet supplies, and even a cat litter cleaning services for eligible participants.
Website: http://pawsla.org

9. Actors & Others for Animals (818) 755-6045 – Spay/neuter program to low-income individuals at preferred veterinary offices. Partial medical assistance is also available.
Website: http://actorsandothers.com

10. Downtown Dog Rescue (818) 407-4145 – Support for homeless and very low-income people in Los Angeles (mainly Compton, Lynwood, South Gate, Paramount areas) who want to responsibly care for their dogs by offering free dog veterinary care, free food for their dogs, free dog bedding, and free dog products.

11. F.O.O.D. (Feeding Out Of Devotion) – Provides dog and cat food every week to low-income, seniors and homeless who need assistance feeding their pets. Every Sunday at Cesar Chavez Park (402 N. Golden Ave, Long Beach, CA 90802) from 2:30pm to 3:00pm; they pass out dog and cat meals that will last the client until the following week. They also provide leashes, collars, beds, blankets, pet jackets, and spay/neuter vouchers.
Website: http://foodforpetsinneed.org

12. The Lucy Pet Foundation (855) 499-LUCY – Mobile spay/neuter clinic in the greater Los Angeles area. Must have an appointment in advance to utilize mobile clinic services; walk-ups not accepted.
Website: http://lucypetfoundation.org

13. Spay For LA (888) SPAY-4-LA – Mobile spay/neuter clinic in the greater Los Angeles area. Must have appointment in advance to utilize mobile clinic services; walk-ups not accepted.
Website: http://1888spay4la.org

14. The Amanda Foundation (888) 349-7388 – Mobile spay/neuter clinic regularly serving Watts, South Los Angeles, Tacoma, Boyle Heights, North Hollywood, and Panorama City. Must have an appointment in advance to utilize mobile clinic services; walk-ups not accepted.
Website: http://amandafoundation.org

Resources provided by:
Violence Prevention Initiatives.
Last updated: January 2016

Have a question that isn’t listed here? Please send us an email: ahome4ever@gmail.com