Wednesday, November 29, 2023


A dog’s final ‘run’ and a lost alligator in Brooklyn. Huh??

As a vet, I appreciate everyone who cares for their pets and other animals the best they can. This week, we have more stories of people who do just that…

Reader Richard shared his story about letting his loved ones go:

He writes, “Took my lab camping pretty much to the end. Had a ramp for the truck and a ramp for the RV. Fortunately, when her time came we were at home, but it was still not an easy parting. Took many cross-country trips with her.

“But tell me… how bizarre is my family? I left my cat with my daughter on one trip and he died while I was away. So my daughter put the cat in her freezer till my return so it could be buried at home.”

Richard, the love of your pets shines through. Thank you for taking such good care of them.

Spencer, the Boston Marathon dog, dies

Spencer, a Golden Retriever who became the Boston Marathon’s official race dog, died at home in Holliston, Mass., on Feb. 17. He was 13 years old and died of cancer.

Spencer in Rich Powers’ rain jacket ahead of the marathon in 2018, as his cat sister, Tawney, helped lift a flag. Credit: Rich Powers

Recognized along the race route with a flag proclaiming “Boston Strong,” Spencer gave marathoners some needed energy and support during their run. It was not unusual for runners to stop and pet Spencer during the race—record race time be damned! It’s Spencer!

Rich Powers and his family adopted Spencer in 2009 and, over the course of his life, he became a therapy dog helping in hospitals, schools and assisted-living facilities. He was proclaimed the Boston Marathon’s “Grand Barkshal” by the Boston Athletic Association.

Along the Boston Marathon route. Photo: Rich Powers

Spencer is survived by Rich and Dorrey Powers, Penny, and two cats, Gabby and Tawney. Mr. Powers said, “He just walked up to people and sized them up, looked them up and down, and knew what you needed… He had an energy and light that would come out of him. Anyone who met him could attest to that… Everyone claims to have the best dog and no one is wrong. Spencer did not know he was as special as he was.”

If you would like to read the full article on Spencer written by Talya Minsberg at The New York Times, here is a link. It’s a wonderful story.

Alligator rescued in Brooklyn

A small alligator found in Brooklyn
Female alligator 5 years old. Photo: Bronx Zoo

Stories about alligators in New York City’s sewers are legendary. It is a sad, but real, fact that people get alligators as pets and when they don’t want them anymore, they release them or flush them down the toilet. Recently, an alligator was found in Brooklyn and heroes stepped in to save it.

The female American alligator was emaciated, weak and near death when found in Prospect Park by the park’s maintenance workers. She was taken to the Bronx Zoo and x-rays revealed a four-inch rubber tub-stopper in her stomach. She is being treated by Zoo staff and it will be determined what the next steps will be after she has regained strength.

Photo: Bronx Zoo

Please don’t release any pets into the wild or the city because they won’t survive. I used to live in Altadena, CA, near the national forest, and emaciated stray cats and dogs were found all the time roaming the forest. People think they can survive on their own, but they cannot. If you need to surrender a pet, call your local shelter or humane society. Pretty please.

And finally, a laugh

Do you have a story to share? Please send it to me using the form below. Thank you!

Click or drag a file to this area to upload.



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Neal Davis (@guest_227717)
8 months ago

Thank you, Karel! 😎

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