February 2009

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Montcalm Shelter Receives Failing Marks 

February 26, 2009



After touring the Stanton shelter Feb. 18, the Humane Society of Kent County's medical director graded the shelter a 2 out of 5 during her hour long assessment at Wednesday's animal shelter ad hoc committee meeting.  This is the same shelter that has a contract with class b dealer, R&R Research, that was set to expire at the end of January 2009.  Instead, the county commissioners voted to extend the contract for another six months and form the committee to examine the contract. 





Suggested improvements include:

(1) Develop and implement a mission statement. "The community is currently unclear of the shelter's role in the community because of the controversy with euthanasia practices and pound seizure," Swift said.


(2) Make the kennel environment more pleasing to the animals.


(3) Create a new kennel technician position to provide for one employee who oversees all operations in the shelter and would get to know the animals better so they could help more with adoptions.

(4) Using a microchip scanner to see if animals have chips implanted in them with identifying information.


(5) Build an outdoor dog run for staff members to take the dogs while the kennel area is being cleaned and for members of the public to see dogs they may want to adopt.


(6) Begin providing basic medical care and vaccinations at the facility.


(7) Dispose of a set of "cat tongs" that could break a cat's neck while it is being moved.


(8) Train employees to communicate with the community and rescue groups better.

Click below to read the full article in the Greenville Daily News.  Please leave a comment with your views on what is happening in Montcalm.  For more information, visit our special page dedicated to the Montcalm County shelter and its contract with R&R Research: www.lakehavenrescue.org/montcalm.htm




Join the March 5 Demonstration to End U of M Dog Lab 

February 23, 2009


You can still help end the University of Michigan’s use of live dogs for trauma training. In recent weeks, supporters have sent more than 19,000 e-mails to university administrators asking them to end the use of live dogs in the school’s Advanced Trauma Life Support course. However, the decision-makers at the University of Michigan don’t seem to be getting the message that most of these courses are taught with advanced medical simulators—not with live animals.


That’s why PCRM will lead a demonstration at the University of Michigan (U-M) on March 5, just two weeks before the school’s next scheduled Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) course. Please join them and bring your dogs!


What: Physician-led peaceful demonstration at U-M

When: Thursday, March 5, 11 a.m.

Location: Southeast corner of S. State St. and N. University Ave., Ann Arbor, MI

Parking: Please use nearby public parking


Signs will be provided. Please make sure to dress warmly. No RSVP is required


Please send this information to your friends and family within driving distance of Ann Arbor and ask them to join you at the demonstration.


Documents obtained by PCRM under the Michigan Freedom of Information Act reveal that U-M is using lost or surrendered pets from Michigan shelters for its ATLS course. At U-M, this course involves cutting open live, anesthetized dogs and practicing emergency medical procedures. After the training session, the animals are killed. All of this happens even though the school owns a validated non-animal teaching method as part of its state-of-the-art medical simulation center.


While a handful of institutions like U-M continue to use live animals, the American College of Surgeons, the ATLS oversight body, has approved non-animal models like the TraumaMan System, Synman, and human cadavers for these courses. Across the United States and Canada more than 90 percent of ATLS courses are taught using only human-based simulators.


Montcalm Committee Continues, R&R Research Owner "Pleads the Fifth"

February 21, 2009


The Blue Ribbon Committee meetings continue to go on in Montcalm concerning the shelter's contract with class b dealer, R&R Research, that was set to expire at the end of January 2009.  Instead, the county commissioners voted to extend the contract for another six months and form the committee to examine the contract.  Lake Haven has these important points to make about this committee and R&R Research:

Montcalm's Shelter Director, Patty Lentz, has been quoted as saying she wants an end to Montcalm's contract with R&R.  Why are the commissioners not following the recommendation of the director they appointed? 


Chairman of the Board of Commissioners, Patrick Q. Carr, appointed the owner of R&R Research, Jim Woudenberg, as a member of the committee despite an obvious conflict of interest in seeing the contract for his private business continue.  However, Patty Lentz, Montcalm's own director of the animal shelter was not invited to join. 


An argument is being made that these animals are going for life-saving medical research.  However, Mr. Woudenberg sells animals anywhere he chooses without accounting for where they are actually going (or if they are being euthanized, how this is performed).  When asked, Woudenberg simply refuses to disclose the information. We do know he trades with other animal dealers and can sell for toxicity testing, ballistics testing, etc.  Another important point is that pound animals CANNOT be used in bonafide medical research because of their unknown history and diseases.  


The Montcalm citizens and others in the public have spoken out against this contract - packing the county courthouse to standing room only at the January 26 commissioner meeting, which was supposed to determine the fate of the contract.  Why are Montcalm's commissioners not listening to their constituents? 


Commissioners have stated that opinions from those in surrounding counties do not matter.  However, actions within Montcalm do severely effect surrounding counties.  With citizens afraid to use their own county shelter, unwanted animals are brought to shelters in surrounding counties, causing a burden on already stressed shelters. 


Please read the most recent articles below from the Greenville Daily News and make your voice known by leaving a comment.  These comments are being used to gauge public perception of what is happening in Montcalm.



Enter Your Pet in the Bissell Most Valuable Pet Photo Contest

February 16, 2009


Do you want to share the beauty of your favorite pet with the world? Bissell is having a contest to find their next pet model!  There are prizes for humans - as well as a grand prize of $10,000 for the winner's pet cause of choice! 


Click on the logo below to enter your pet.  Then, get your family and friends to VOTE!  During each voting period, you can vote for your favorite pet photo. The top five photos each week will proceed to the semi-finals. The contest will run for 7 weeks, and Bissell will choose the winner from the 60 semi-finalists based on the following criteria:

Expression Overall


Condition of Coat

Thanks to Adrienne, Chari, and Bruce and their cat, Mr. Kitty, for tipping us off to this contest!

Update on Dog Saved from Montcalm

February 13, 2009


From Mary, Macie's new owner: 


With all the recent news about the Montcalm Animal Shelter, I thought I should send an update on Macie. I remember that Cheryl rescued Macie from Montcalm in August, and I adopted her soon after.


You may recall that I had lost my beloved eight-year-old Aussie Lab to a spinal stroke in April, and Macie had lost her beloved owner/Mom in the summer. I decided that although neither of us could replace the one that was gone, we would be good for one another. And I thought Macie would be great for Mattie, our little Daisy dog who was heartbroken without her big sister.


Well, Macie has been a doll. Nicely trained, incredibly eager to please, and just sweet through and through. We haven't had a single day of trouble. Oh, except for the skunking incident in November... and we survived that. She is a bit of an escape artist, but she never goes far before returning to our doorstep (and I'm getting smarter about the storm door, which she figured out how to open in the first week). In just six months, she's become a cherished member of our family, and we feel very fortunate that Lake Haven saved her from a very different fate.


Thanks for the great work you do on behalf of animals who just need loving homes.





To learn more about what is happening in Montcalm County, click here.

Montcalm County Shelter Committee Update

February 13, 2009


A committee has been formed in Montcalm County to examine the contract it has with class-b animal dealer, R&R Research.  In a questionable move, the county has appointed R&R Research owner, Jim Woudenberg, to the committee despite his obvious vested interest in keeping R&R operational in Montcalm. 


Please click below to read the articles from the Greenville Daily News.  Please comment on the articles to give your point of view.  The committee is reading these comments to help gather public input. 








To learn more about what is happening in Montcalm County, click here.

Ratbone Rescues Updating Surgery Information on Maya - Seeking Donations 

February 13, 2009



Ratbone Rescues is posting updated information on Maya, a Lake Haven rescue dog who was flown to Florida for a specialized surgery (see past article about Maya).  This wonderful rescue that was willing to help Maya is also seeking donations to help cover the cost of the surgery.  Please click here for Maya's update and donation information on the Ratbone Rescues website! 

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Lake Haven is a non-profit volunteer-run animal rescue shelter dedicated to the care and adoption of homeless and/or injured dogs, cats, kittens and puppies in the West Michigan area.  Lake Haven is a recognized 510(c)3 organization.