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By Roz Rogoff

About this blog: In January 2002 I started writing my own online "newspaper" titled "The San Ramon Observer." I reported on City Council meetings and other happenings in San Ramon. I tried to be objective in my coverage of meetings and events, and...  (More)

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A new way to adopt an animal

Uploaded: Dec 21, 2014

My readers know I have been active in animal rescue groups. I was a cat foster for Tri Valley Animal Rescue (TVAR) for several years. A group of cat fosters split off from TVAR to form Safe-Cat in San Ramon.

I do not foster anymore, but I kept my four foster cats. I encourage everyone who is considering adding a dog or cat to your family, to try a shelter or rescue group first. I also discovered a new way to adopt an animal without actually having to bring the animal home.

On Sunday afternoon a postman knocked on my door. He was wearing a Santa hat and dropping off a package. I was surprised to see a him on Sunday. "You deliver on Sunday," I asked in disbelief. "Only packages," he answered.

Well it wasn't a Christmas gift, at least not from someone else. It was a "Certificate of Adoption," from Defenders of Wildlife. The Defenders of Wildlife website features 29 different animals, birds, and sea mammals that are available for adoption. The money for the adoption goes to habitat conservation for that "adopted" animal, support of the Endangered Species Act, and helping people and wildlife to co-exist.

I adopted an Elephant Group for $35. The package came with a Certificate of Adoption, a photograph of an elephant, and a booklet titled, "Kid Defenders, Wild Animals That Need Our HELP" with information on how to help wild animals, a section on different animals with outlines for coloring, and another section of word games.

I chose to receive the plush toy elephant, but you can refuse the plush toy and/or the Kids Activity Book, so that more of the money goes directly to helping the animals. A tag on the toy elephant's ear says, "Every animal and plant has a purpose on this Planet. Defenders of Wildlife is dedicated to the protection of all native wild animals and plants in their natural communities. Passion for conservation and preservation is what drives our mission. We appreciate your support!"

In addition to my Elephant Group, I adopted a Manatee Group as a gift for my brother-in-law. He loves manatees. Years ago when my mother lived in Florida, David and Alice and I visited Manatee Park in Fort Myers to see the manatees that came for the warm water discharged from the Florida Power and Light facility there.

Manatees love the warm water and they did not appear to be afraid of people standing nearby. Manatees are large, sweet animals. Some had scars on their backs from boat propellers. Tangling with motorboats is one of the greatest dangers to Florida manatees now.

Animal adoptions are available online or over the phone at (800) 385-9712 9:00 am - 6:00 pm EST, Monday-Friday. Defenders of Wildlife is a three star charity on Charity Navigator. Four stars is the highest rating, but three stars are very good and the rating is at the top of the range almost to four stars. So you can trust Defenders of Wildlife to put the money to appropriate use.
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Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Dec 24, 2014 at 10:32 am

Good on ya, Roz! Elephants are in dire need of our help. Magnificent creatures, the latest victims of terrorism.

Posted by also love animals, a resident of another community,
on Dec 25, 2014 at 2:23 pm

Good info and thank you for doing that.

The most abused animals on earth are chickens that are factory farmed for eggs or meat. Millions upon millions of them live in spaces smaller than your Ipad for their entire lives. Never able to sit, lay down or spread their wings. When through laying eggs, after about 2 years, they are often simply thrown into a trash pit, still alive, and left to die. Wonder why salmonella is so prevalent these days? Look no further than the conditions in these factory farms where chickens are many layers deep, with the eggs subject to defecation from each layer of animals while the eggs move on the assembly line toward your breakfast.

You can adopt chickens or other farm animals that have been rescued from these abysmal conditions. Or, better yet, you can stop eating animals simply because you think they belong on the bottom of your food chain. Do you eat dogs, cats or protected wild animals? Why not? If chickens and other farm animals deserve to be your food what makes dogs and cats so much more special?

Posted by San Ramon Observer, a resident of San Ramon,
on Dec 25, 2014 at 8:32 pm

San Ramon Observer is a registered user.

Also love animals,

I thought Proposition 2 a few years ago made those conditions illegal for laying hens. Not only that, the law requires all eggs or meat sold in California to meet the requirements of Prop. 2. Factory farms in Iowa tried to get that overturned but were not able to, at least for now.

I used to buy eggs labeled "Comfort Coop." They had a coop cam that showed the chickens in spacious coops where they could move around and not be overcrowded. I have not seen that brand in Nob Hill lately. I hope that the implementation of Prop. 2 requires all egg laying chickens to be in comfortable coops. Cage Free is actually worse. Hundreds of chickens are in overcrowded, filthy conditions.

I've thought about being a vegetarian, and I have cut down on eating beef, pork, and chicken, but I'm not ready to be a vegan and give up eggs, milk, or cheese.

Posted by also love animals, a resident of another community,
on Dec 26, 2014 at 8:52 am

SRO -- thanks for your thoughtful reply. I did not mean for my response to sound like an attack on you, although it does sort of seem that way.

CA does have some protection for egg laying chickens. I admire you for taking the time to know the difference and that "cage free" or "free range" is only a legal term allowing the egg farmers the latitude to continue to mistreat their birds.

There are so many horrors in the factory farming world. Many exemplified by the likes of Governor Christie with his acceptance of gestational crates for pigs. Put Governor Pig into one for the rest of his life and he would sing a different tune.

I guess my point is that I am in favor of being kind to all animals. I don't think that dogs, cats or exotic animals are the only ones who deserve respect and a better life.

Posted by San Ramon Observer, a resident of San Ramon,
on Dec 26, 2014 at 6:08 pm

San Ramon Observer is a registered user.


The degree of abuse and suffering in the World, whether animals or people, is overwhelming. I contribute to Farm Sanctuary, which takes rescued farm animals, but I'm sure they are the rare lucky ones. I also contribute to Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) and the Humane Society of the US, which try to pass and enforce laws to protect farm animals from these awful conditions.

Gov. Christie was making grandstand promises in Iowa about not signing a law in New Jersey that he knew would pass anyway. Politicians will make promises to anyone anywhere they think will help them get nominated or elected. If Christie is the Republican nominee for President, you'll see him turn into an animal lover in California.


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