If you’ve visited animal shelters between here and the SF Bay Area, you may have noticed the name George Whittell on a building. It’s on the SPCA’s Education Center, in fact. The made for Hollywood story behind this would be a perfect vehicle for Bradley Cooper or Gary Oldman.
George Whittell Jr. died in a Redwood City hospital at the age of 87 in 1969. He left three quarters of his $40 million estate to the National Audubon Society, the Defenders of Wildlife and a number of animal hospital and pet cemeteries. Of the remainder, $6 million was bequeathed to the Society of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals to “relieve the suffering and pain of animals.” The problem was that no such organization with that exact name existed.
Naturally, the ambiguously worded will created a field day for animal groups. More than 50 staked claim to the $6 million remainder, some with stronger cases than others. The humane society located near Mr. Whittell’s Woodside estate had a good case, as did the San Francisco SPCA, since he owned property there and belonged to many social organizations. He purchased several acres on the eastern shore of Lake Tahoe and may have had landholdings in Carmel.
(As a New Year’s resolution, you might review your own estate plans to ensure your wishes are honored and not left to courts to figure out).
Ugly sweaters have jumped the shark. Now that sweaters are specifically designed and made to impress at ugly sweater contests, that goes against the spirit. I mean, it started as a simple idea where people would pull out their ugly sweater that wasn’t designed to look ugly. It just was. That was the beauty (or ugliness) of it.
For decades, animal shelters placed a moratorium on adoptions in the days leading up to Christmas and would forbid people from adopting pets as gifts to protect them from being sent back, just like ugly sweaters that get returned in the days after Christmas.
The SPCA for Monterey County is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons who abandoned a dog in Monterey today.
The terrier mix was found by a local resident inside a taped-up diaper box at 900 Cass Street. He is approximately one or two years old and matted, dirty, and dehydrated.
The dog, named Linus by the SPCA, was immediately examined by a veterinarian and is now resting comfortably with clean water, fresh food, and cozy bedding.
The SPCA for Monterey County has received multiple reports of people soliciting door to door asking for donations to the “humane society.” These fundraisers are not being performed on behalf of the SPCA, and they appear to be fraudulent.
These particular reports we received were from Prescott Avenue in Monterey and Surf Avenue in Pacific Grove, and they all took place this week. The solicitors told residents they were fundraising for the “local humane society” and asked for donations to end puppy mills. One solicitor was wearing a fake badge. Two residents reported the solicitors as demanding and aggressive.
The SPCA for Monterey County advises our community for their safety and the safety of our wildlife to please leave baby deer, known as fawns, alone. So far this Spring, the SPCA Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation Center has received 11 fawns and six of them were healthy babies taken from their mothers unintentionally. While two were successfully reunited with their mothers and two are still in our care, sadly, two did not survive their encounters with humans.
Mother deer leave their babies hidden and alone in a safe space during most of the day, often only visiting them during dawn and dusk. These fawns are not abandoned; the mother is likely out of sight watching you. If you find a fawn lying quietly in the grass leave it where it is, stay back and out of sight, and keep dogs as far away as possible. The mother will not return if she senses people or dogs are too close. If a fawn has been picked up or handled, gently place it back in the exact place where it was found, or within sight of that spot. Stand back several hundred feet, and wait for the mother’s return (which could take hours).