Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Keeping Your Pets Safe On The 4th of July

More pets go missing around the 4th of July than any other time of year, and noisy fireworks are to blame.

Here are 4 simple tips on how to keep pets safe, plus a bonus tip on how pet owners can have a better chance of finding a lost pet.

1) Stay inside: Try to keep your pet indoors at all times during holiday celebrations. Ideally, someone stays home with your pet. Also keep your dog leashed when going out for walks.

2) Make them feel safe: Comfort your pets with petting, hugging, talking to them in a soothing voice, providing a treat and staying nearby if possible. Make sure they can access their crate or “safe place.” Also ask your veterinarian or local pet retailer about natural calming products, anxiety wraps and other products that can help.

3) Avoid the noise. Try to drown out the fireworks sounds as much as possible by closing windows, playing music or turning on the TV.

4) Act normal! Your pet takes cues from your and your family’s actions. It will help if you go about your normal routine as much as possible, talking and playing with your pet as usual.

5) Protect your pet before the fireworks begin. There are a number of lost-pet devices and services available today, and it’s wise to be proactive in case your pet gets lost. Among the various pet-finder services available, the Pet Amber Alert ID Tag/Pet GPS combines Amber Alert technology with a QR Code and pet GPS to help MORE lost dogs, cats and even birds return home safely. By following these tips, hopefully fewer families will face the heartbreak of losing a pet during the July 4th holiday.

See also: www.aspca.org/pet-care/general-pet-care/fourth-july-safety-tips

For many people, nothing beats lounging in the backyard on the Fourth of July with good friends and family -- including furry friends. While it may seem like a great idea to reward your pet with scraps from the grill and bring him along to watch fireworks, in reality some festive foods and activities can be potentially hazardous to him. The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center offers some important tips.
Please feel free to contact the Montclair Township Animal Shelter for any questions, suggestions or lost pets: 973-744-8600.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Division of Fish & Wildlife Tips on How to Help Reduce Encounters with Bears

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Earlier today a bear was spotted roaming in Montclair Center in the area of Church and Plymouth streets. Police, Fire, Animal Control and Community Services personnel were dispatched to secure the area and DEP Division of Fish and Wildlife was notified. DEP officers came to the scene and tranquilized, tagged and tattooed the animal and will release it in an appropriate wildlife refuge.

In April of this year, the DEP released the following information about what to do should you encounter a bear and measures to take to minimize the risk of the animals visiting one’s home:

With black bears emerging from winter dens and entering a very active period of the year in search of food and mates, the Department of Environmental Protection’s Division of Fish and Wildlife is reminding residents, particularly in the northwest region of New Jersey known as “bear country,” of basic precautions this spring to reduce the risk of potential encounters.

“Bears that learn to associate food with people, and their homes and property, can easily become nuisance bears that forage for easy sources of food in neighborhoods,” said David Chanda, director of the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife. “Residents can greatly reduce the risk of interactions with bears by taking commonsense steps. Most importantly, people should never feed bears, intentionally or unintentionally.”

It is illegal to intentionally feed black bears in New Jersey and punishable by a fine of up to $1,000. A more common problem is unintentional bear feeding by homeowners who unknowingly make household trash, pet foods and other food sources easily available for bears to find and eat.

DEP wildlife experts stress that a black bear simply passing through an area and not causing a specific problem, such as breaking into trash or otherwise trying to access food sources on peoples’ properties or posing a safety threat, should be left alone. The Division of Fish and Wildlife advises people to leave the area and allow the bear to continue on its way. When frightened, bears may seek refuge by climbing trees.

The Division of Fish and Wildlife also offers the additional following tips to minimize conflicts with bears this spring:
Secure your trash and eliminate obvious sources of food, such as pet food on decks, easy-to-reach bird feeders, or food residues left in barbecue grills.

Use certified bear-resistant garbage containers if possible. Otherwise, store all garbage in containers with tight-fitting lids and place them along the inside walls of your garage, or in the basement, a sturdy shed or other secure area.

Wash garbage containers frequently with a disinfectant solution to remove odors. Put out garbage on collection day, not the night before.

Avoid feeding birds when bears are active. If you choose to feed birds, do so during daylight hours only and bring feeders indoors at night. Suspend birdfeeders from a free-hanging wire, making sure they are at least 10 feet off the ground. Clean up spilled seeds and shells daily.

Immediately remove all uneaten food and food bowls used by pets fed outdoors.

Clean outdoor grills and utensils to remove food and grease residue. Store grills securely.

Do not place meat or any sweet foods in compost piles.

Remove fruit or nuts that fall from trees in your yard.

Install electric fencing as an effective way to protect crops, beehives and livestock.
If you encounter a bear that is standing its ground, remain calm and do not run. Make sure the bear has an escape route. Avoid direct eye contact, back up slowly and speak with a low, assertive voice.
Residents should report bear damage, nuisance behavior or aggressive bears to the DEP Hotline at 1-877-WARN-DEP (877-927-6337) or their local police department.

Black bears have been sighted in all 21 New Jersey counties, and bear-human encounters have occurred more frequently in recent years in places outside of traditional bear country, defined as the area west of Interstate 287 and north of Interstate 78.

To learn more about New Jersey’s black bears, their history in New Jersey and ways to avoid problems with them, visit www.nj.gov/dep/fgw/bearfacts.htm.

Source: DEP Division of Fish and Wildlife

Friday, May 27, 2016

What To Do When You See Wildlife In Distress

Montclair residents, like many folks in New Jersey, have learned to share their space with creatures of the wild, enjoying a peaceful coexistence with their furry, feathered and other neighbors of the animal kingdom. There are times when a resident may find that one of their animal friends is in distress and will call the Animal Control Officer.

If you think you may have orphaned, injured or displaced wildlife in your yard, before you pick up the phone to contact Montclair Animal Control, observe the animal and gather information. The following are questions the Animal Control Officer will ask you:

  • What is the exact location and address of the animal?
  • What does the animal look like? What color is it? Fur, Fins or Feathers? Size? Adult or Juvenile? How many animals are there?
  • How long has the animal been at the location? Days, hours, minutes?
  • What is it currently doing? How is it behaving?
  • Is it limping? If it’s a bird or bat can it fly?
  • Is there obvious injury or illness? For example, blood, broken bones, runny eyes or nose, etc.
  • Are there insects present on or around the animal? Flies, Fleas, Ticks or Maggots.
  • Is the animal vocalizing or is it completely quiet? If vocalizing how so and how frequently?
  • Are there any other animals in the area? Predators? Parents?
Once these questions have been answered the Animal Control Officer may decide to have you further continue to observe the animal or they may immediately come out to assess the situation further. By being observant and not approaching the animal you too can help the wildlife in our community!
For more information, contact Animal Control Officer at 973-509-6978.
Interested in volunteering to help the wildlife in New Jersey? Contact one of the following organizations to see what you can do.
Mercer County Wildlife Center 609-883-6606