05/25/14 12:00pm
05/25/2014 12:00 PM
Shoshire Kennels co-owner Dwayne Early of Aquebogue and his two-year-old long-haired Chihuahua Lady Gaga last year. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch, file)

Shoshire Kennels co-owner Dwayne Early of Aquebogue and his long-haired Chihuahua Lady Gaga last year. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch, file)

The rolling purr of a cat or sloppy kisses of a dog are a simple signs of affection that can go a long way for people, providing pet owners with a sense of companionship and something to look forward to when coming home to an otherwise empty house. (more…)

11/02/13 6:36pm
11/02/2013 6:36 PM

TIM GANNON PHOTO |  More than 100 animals were available for adoption Saturday at Polish Hall.

Polish Hall in Riverhead was transformed into a giant pet adoption center for four hours Saturday, as the Animal Rescue Fund of the Hamptons teamed up with five other non-profit or municipal animal shelters for a Pet Adoption and Agility Expo.

“We want to make pet adoption as easy as possible,” said ARF’s Executive Director Sara Davison.

The expo provided “one-stop shopping” for people seeking to adopt dogs or cats from the six participating agencies, which included ARF, Kent Animal Shelter, North Fork Animal Welfare League. RSVP, Southampton Animal Shelter Foundation and  Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter.

The dogs were outside the building, the cats inside. More than 100 animals were available for adoption.

In addition, there were agility courses on site for both cats and dogs. All animals at the event were spayed, neutered and vaccinated, and checked by a veterinarian.

TIM GANNON PHOTO | A few cats relax Saturday while waiting for adoption.

TIM GANNON PHOTO | Dressed for the occasion.

TIM GANNON PHOTO | A Persian cat available for adoption.

 

TIM GANNON PHOTO | Cats try their luck on the agility course.

10/06/13 3:53pm
10/06/2013 3:53 PM
GRANT PARPAN PHOTO | Deacon Jeff Sykes and altar boy Chris Massey of Our Lady of Good Counsel Church in Mattituck bless a horse Sunday.

GRANT PARPAN PHOTO | Deacon Jeff Sykes and altar boy Chris Massey of Our Lady of Good Counsel Church in Mattituck bless a horse Sunday.

It’s not every day you go to church with three horses, two donkeys, a guinea pig, several cats and a few dozen dogs. And that’s what people love about the Blessing of the Animal ceremonies held at area churches each October.

“It’s the most fun we have all year,” said Deacon Jeff Sykes of Our Lady of Good Counsel Church in Mattituck. “It’s particularly great out here. Other places, you’ll see some house pets. Here we have horses and donkeys, too.”

The Mattituck ceremony was one of several blessings held on the North Fork this weekend, along with events at Old Steeple Community Church in Aquebogue and St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Greenport.

10/19/12 12:00pm
10/19/2012 12:00 PM
Southold, Prairie dogs,

GIANNA VOLPE PHOTO | Nitro, a curious prairie dog, peeks from her cage to inspect the camera.

Their names are Nitro and Methane, but they aren’t drag racers.

They’re a pair of unique pets: two black-tailed prairie dogs that have called Donna and Rob Jester’s Southold home their own for 2 1/2 years now.

And the Jesters say they couldn’t be happier to have the two female prairie dogs in their lives.

“When we come home, they bark to greet us,” said Ms. Jester, who works at Tyler’s Automotive in Mattituck, describing the homecoming ritual. “They stand up on their hind legs and throw their heads back when they do it.”

Mr. Jester, an airplane engine mechanic by trade, likened the daily exchange of squeaks to a parked car’s alarm setting off another car alarm nearby.

“They set one another off,” he said. “They can go back and forth like that five and six times.”

When the Jesters approach the rodents’ cages to pet them, the prairie dogs bare their teeth, but it’s not a malicious gesture — it’s friendly.

“She opens her mouth like that when I pet her because that’s how they greet each other in the wild,” Ms. Jester explained. “It’s like a kiss.”

She added that because prairie dogs are extremely social, the couple keeps them in cages in the living room where the two will be sure to spend the maximum amount of time with their human caregivers.

“They’re so social that if we had them upstairs in our bedroom, where they could hear us not giving them attention, they could actually get sick and literally die from lack of affection,” she said.

This is also the reason the couple is careful to keep their prairie dogs in pairs.

So far, the Jesters have had three sets.

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07/28/12 3:00pm

After more than a month of giving $10 discount vaccines to dogs, Kent Animal Shelter will have crossed the 1,000 mark for the year when its discount program concludes Sunday.

The shelter was scheduled to perform more than 160 vaccinations this weekend alone.

The affordable vaccine clinics were made possible by a $10,000 grant from the ASPCA.

While the schedule is full for the final day Sunday, shelter officials said they will try to accommodate people who call in advance at 727-7797.

Check photos from Saturday at the shelter below:

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTOS | Five-year-old chihuahua Chico with his owner, Lea Schaefer of Baiting Hollow.

Kent Animal Shelter’s vet technician Kim Rivera of Manorville gives a distemper shot to 7-year old chihuahua ‘Skippy,’ held by his owner Kevin Vinas, 9, of Riverhead.

Seven-year-old shepard mix Pebbles with his owner Laura Sforza of Mastic.

Three-year-old pit bull Apollo waits for his shots as he is held by owner Jennifer Sforza of Mastic.

Tom Comstock of Rocky Point comforts his 17-week-old puppy Zeus, as he gets his rabies and distemper shot.