‘Paws in the Plaza’ is Tuesday at Victory Plaza

There’s more to the SPCA than just dogs and cats! Check SPCA.org/findapet to see all the animals currently available for adoption through SPCA of Texas.

American Airlines Center is hosting “Paws in the Plaza” on Tuesday June 20, from 3:30-7:30 p.m. at the American Airlines Center in Victory Plaza as a way to help homeless critters find loving homes as well as benefit the SPCA of Texas and its Community Pet Program. The event will collect leash and collar donations for the Community Pet Program and raise funds for SPCA.

Organizers hope to collect at least 35,000 leases and collars for the program, which “provides another layer of support to the people and their pets of Southern Dallas, keeping pets in homes, off the streets and out of shelters.” Chewy.com kicked off the effort by donating 400 leashes and collars.

Paws in the Plaza will include pet-friendly activities, vendors, food trucks, $25 on-site pet adoptions, raffles and more. For each leash or collar you donate, you’ll get a raffle ticket, and Dustin Kross with The New Hot 93.3 will be broadcasting live from the Victory Plaza studios.

SPCA of Texas is offering $25 dog and cat adoptions through Sept. 3. The fee includes spay/neuter surgery, age-appropriate vaccinations, a heartworm test for dogs six months and older, and an FIV/FeLV for cats for months and older. It also includes an initial flea/tick preventative and heartworm preventative, a microchip, 30 days of free PetHealth Insurance provided by PetPlan, a free 14-day wellness exam with VCA Animal Hospitals, a free year-long subscription to Activ4Pets, a rabies and tag and a free leash.

The event is sponsored by American Airlines Center, Chewy.com, Citydog! Club, DFW Street Eats, Levy, Noah’s Bark All-Natural Dog Biscuits, The Arrangement, Uber, Victory Park and Victory Tavern City Grille. Good Morning Texas/WFAA and New Hot 93.3FM are media sponsors.

Check here for information on pets available for adoption through SPCA, and here for more information on SPCA of Texas. Read Dallas Voice each Friday, online and in print, to see our SPCA of Texas Pet of the Week. And watch DVtv in Spayse on the fourth Friday of each month — streaming live on the Dallas Voice Facebook page and on the Spayse Studios YouTube channel — for our video Pet of the Month from the SPCA of Texas.

—  Tammye Nash

Men Having Babies conference, expo set for this weekend in Dallas

Susan Taylor, a surrogate mother from Forth Worth, hands the baby she carried to his fathers, Paul and Milo, in the hospital. Susan is among a group of surrogates, parents and even an egg donor that will speak at the Men Having Babies conference and expo this weekend. (Photo courtesy Men Having Babies)

Among LGBT people in the U.S. under the age of 50, an estimated 48 percent of women are raising at least one child under the age of 18, according to a 2013 report by The Williams Institute. The number of gay men stands at about 20 percent.

And while actual statistics are hard to come by regarding surrogacy, evidence shows that more and more gay men are choosing to become parents through surrogacy.

But surrogacy isn’t a cheap option for prospective parents or an easy one. Estimates — depending on where you go and how long it takes — range from the tens of thousands of dollars to upwards of $100,000, according to some sources. And that’s not including all the things that prospective parents need to know about the legal ramifications, the most successful options, and more.

That’s where Men Having Babies comes in.

Men Having Babies Inc. is a nonprofit organization that spun off in 2012 from a program of the New York City LGBT Center. Men Having Babies started as a peer support network for gay men who were biological fathers and fathers-to-be, offering monthly workshops and an annual seminar. Over time the organization has developed resources and programs that go even further in helping the dream of fatherhood come true for gay men across the country.

Men Having Babies has expanded its mailing list to include 2,000 couples and singles around the world, and has teamed up with LGBT family associations to develop similar programs in Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Barcelona, Tel Aviv and Brussels, according to the MHB website.

MHB’s mission is to provide educational and practical information to prospective gay parents looking to become biological parents, to promote the affordability of surrogacy-related services for gay men through financial assistance and other means, to promote the safest surrogacy practices possible and to raise awareness of the potential benefits of surrogacy.

Gay men in North Texas considering becoming parents through surrogacy have a chance to take advantage of MHB’s information and resources this weekend at the Men Having Babies South 2017 Surrogacy and Gay Parenting Conference, taking place Saturday-Sunday, June 10-11, at the Wyndham Dallas Suites — Park Central, 7800 Alpha Road.

The Dallas event will feature surrogacy parenting options in both the U.S. and Canada, with practical and personal peer advice and opportunities to meet leading surrogacy service. The expo will also feature adoption and foster care resources.

Programs will offer insights from the latest studies about contemporary gestational surrogacy, and specialty panels on insurance, budgeting, medical and psychological aspects of surrogacy. Proceeds from sponsorship and exhibiting fees will benefit the Gay Parenting Assistance Program.

While the event is organized by gay parenting organizations, non-gay prospective surrogacy parents are welcome, too.

Also on Sunday, the expo will include the LGBT Family Reunion and Equality Rally, being held in solidarity with the national Equality March for Unity and Pride, being held Sunday in Washington, D.C. Local marches are being held that same day: at 11 a.m. Sunday in Fort Worth at the Tarrant County Courthouse, and at 7 p.m. Sunday in Dallas at Resource Center.

The MHB Family Reunion is free and will include entertainment, an LGBT family book fair and refreshments. It is co-sponsored by Dallas Voice and Rainbow Roundup. For a full weekend schedule, check here.

Registration for the conference is $20 in advance (register online here) and $25 at the door. Online registration ends Friday, June 9, and organizers urge participants to register in advance since these events usually sell out.

—  Tammye Nash

Pet of the week • 08-26-16

2015-10-11-15.54.46

 

Fitzroy, a pocket shepherd, was found in a local shelter one year ago. He had more than 40 major puncture wounds on his back that, due to his thick shepherd coat, had gone unseen and untreated. The wounds were so badly infected that no one could tell if he had been mauled by some other animal, or if he had been stabbed by a person.

The wounds healed, but the infection had been so severe that the skin of Fitzroy’s back was so badly scarred that his hair will not regrow there. For that reason, Fitzroy has an amazing collection of T-shirts that he wears to protect his exposed and delicate skin.

Fitzroy is about 2 years old, weighs about 40 pounds and is a gorgeous solid white pocket shepherd. He enjoys other dogs and regularly goes to the dog park. He is very shy of new people but given very little time, he is warm, funny and loving with those around him.

Fitzroy has completed an extensive training program and even has his own Facebook page and blog.

If you are interested saving Fitzroy, visit Take Me Home Pet Rescue at TakeMeHomePetRescue.com.
Take Me Home Pet Rescue is a 501(c)3 nonprofit based in Richardson. The organization has rescued more than 2,500 pets since its inception and is committed to helping Fitzroy find his perfect forever home.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition August 26, 2016.

—  Dallasvoice

Council member Jones to be first cisgender reader at Houston Day of Remembrance

Jolanda Jones

Jolanda Jones

Houston City Council member Jolanda Jones is scheduled to be the first cisgender reader in the history of Houston’s Transgender Day of Remembrance. Lou Weaver, president of the Transgender Foundation of America, one the events sponsors, says that Jones was originally approached to be a speaker at the event because of her advocacy for trans children, but that she requested to read instead.

“I begged to read, I begged them,” corrects Jones, “they asked me if I wanted to speak and I begged them to read instead because it’s profound and it touches you. I think it’s better to read because it’s important.”
Jones said she was particularly moved at last year’s Day of Remembrance by the story of 17 month old Roy A. Jones who was beaten to death by his babysitter for “acting like a girl.” “I was so touched when they read about the baby that was killed,” said Jones, “the readers tell the story.”

Jones led efforts this year to encourage local homeless youth provider Covenant House to adopt a nondiscrimination policy that covers both sexual orientation and gender identity and expression. She used her position on City Council to threaten to cut Covenant House’s funding unless they addressed accusations of discrimination. That threat persuaded the organization to overhaul their policies and begin regular meetings with community leaders to discuss their progress in serving LGBT youth.
The Houston Transgender Day of Remembrance is Saturday, November 19, from 7-9:30 pm at Farish Hall on the University of Houston Campus.

—  admin

Pet of the week • 10.28.11

Pet-Bambi

Bambi

Bambi

Meet Bambi! She is a very sweet 7-year-old Lhasa Apso Mix that enjoys playing with her toys and cuddling up in your lap. She was brought to Operation Kindness after she was found wondering the streets of Fort Worth. When she arrived, she was extremely matted and dirty after being on the streets for so long. We had her groomed and she has not stopped smiling! She enjoys people and will make a wonderful addition to any family. Please come to Operation Kindness to meet this beautiful blonde lady and consider opening up your heart and giving her a home.

Many other great dogs and cats are available for adoption from Operation Kindness, located at 3201 Earhart Drive, 1 street south of Keller Springs and 2 blocks west of Midway Road, in Carrollton. The no-kill shelter is open 6 days a week: Monday, 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.; closed Tuesday; Wednesday, 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Thursday, noon to 8 p.m.; Friday, noon to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. The cost is $110 for cats, $135 for kittens, $150 dogs over 1 year, and $175 for puppies. The adoption cost includes the spay/neuter surgery, microchipping, vaccinations, heartworm test for dogs, leukemia and FIV test for cats, and more. Those who adopt two pets at the same time receive a $20 discount. For more information, call 972-418-PAWS, or visit OperationKindness.org.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition October 28, 2011.

—  Kevin Thomas

Pet of the week: Mator

Mator is a gorgeous guy with a personality to match. He’s about 18 months old and weighs 45 pounds. Mator sits, shakes hands and loves belly rubs. He’s a friendly, affectionate dog who never meets a stranger and should make a great addition to any family.

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Mator and many other dogs, cats, puppies and kittens are available for adoption from Dallas Animal Services, 1818 N. Westmoreland at I-30, just minutes west of Downtown Dallas. The shelter is open Monday-Saturday 11 a.m.-6:30 p.m. and Sundays noon-5 p.m. The cost to adopt is $85 for dogs and $55 for cats and includes spay/neuter surgery, vaccinations, microchip and more. All dogs are negative for heartworms, and cats have been tested for FeLV and FIV. For more information, visit DallasAnimalServices.org or call 214-671-0249.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 9, 2011.

—  Michael Stephens

Pet of the week • Ramona

Ramona is a 4-month-old, white/black domestic long-haired kitten. She is the last of her litter waiting to find a family to call her own. She is extremely sweet and loves to crawl up on your shoulder and meow in your ear. Please come and meet Ramona at Operation Kindness.
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Many other great dogs and cats are available for adoption from Operation Kindness, located at 3201 Earhart Drive, 1 street south of Keller Springs and 2 blocks west of Midway Road, in Carrollton. The no-kill shelter is open 6 days a week: Monday, 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.; closed Tuesday; Wednesday, 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Thursday, noon to 8 p.m.; Friday, noon to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. The cost is $110 for cats, $135 for kittens, $150 dogs over 1 year, and $175 for puppies. The adoption cost includes the spay/neuter surgery, microchipping, vaccinations, heartworm test for dogs, leukemia and FIV test for cats, and more. Those who adopt two pets at the same time receive a $20 discount. For more information, call 972-418-PAWS, or visit OperationKindness.org.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 2, 2011.

—  Michael Stephens

PET OF THE WEEK: Beth

Beth is a real little beauty. She’s a 5-month-old shepherd-terrier mix who currently weighs 28 pounds and should reach about 45 pounds when full grown. As is clearly obvious, Beth has a happy disposition and sweet demeanor. She’s friendly, playful and loves everyone she meets.

Beth and many other dogs, cats, puppies and kittens are available for adoption from Dallas Animal Services, 1818 N. Westmoreland at I-30, just minutes west of Downtown Dallas. The shelter is open Monday-Saturday 11 a.m.-6:30 p.m. and Sundays noon-5 p.m. The cost to adopt is $85 for dogs and $55 for cats and includes spay/neuter surgery, vaccinations, microchip and more. All dogs are negative for heartworms, and cats have been tested for FeLV and FIV. For more information, visit DallasAnimalServices.org or call 214-671-0249.

—  John Wright

PET OF THE WEEK: Abbey

Abbey is a pretty 2 ½-year-old German Shepherd/Lab mix who was rescued from a city shelter and taken to Camp Wolfgang, a sanctuary for dogs. Unfortunately, Camp Wolfgang was closed down when the owner and founder died. All the remaining dogs had to be relocated. Abbey shared a run with another dog who has now been adopted, so we know that she gets along with other dogs. Abbey has had a hard life, and she is looking to meet a family to call her own.

Many other great dogs and cats are available for adoption from Operation Kindness, located at 3201 Earhart Drive, one street south of Keller Springs and 2 blocks west of Midway Road, in Carrollton. The no-kill shelter is open 6 days a week: Monday, 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.; closed Tuesday; Wednesday, 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Thursday, noon to 8 p.m.; Friday, noon to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. The cost is $110 for cats, $135 for kittens, $150 dogs over 1 year, and $175 for puppies. The adoption cost includes the spay/neuter surgery, microchipping, vaccinations, heartworm test for dogs, leukemia and FIV test for cats, and more. Those who adopt two pets at the same time receive a $20 discount. For more information, call 972-418-PAWS, or visit www.operationkindness.org.

—  John Wright

PET OF THE WEEK: Maggie

Maggie is a pretty, 10-month-old black/tan shepherd mix that was adopted as a puppy but returned because she was not a good fit for the family. She likes other dogs and adores people. She also has a lot of energy that she would love to share with an active family.

Many other great dogs and cats are available for adoption from Operation Kindness, located at 3201 Earhart Drive, 1 street south of Keller Springs and 2 blocks west of Midway Road, in Carrollton. The no-kill shelter is open 6 days a week: Monday, 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.; closed Tuesday; Wednesday, 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Thursday, noon to 8 p.m.; Friday, noon to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. The cost is $110 for cats, $135 for kittens, $150 dogs over 1 year, and $175 for puppies. The adoption cost includes the spay/neuter surgery, microchipping, vaccinations, heartworm test for dogs, leukemia and FIV test for cats, and more. Those who adopt two pets at the same time receive a $20 discount. For more information, call 972-418-PAWS, or visit www.operationkindness.org.

—  John Wright