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Is It a Good Idea to Give Pets as a Gift for the Holidays?



Holiday season is in full effect and many are in search of the perfect present for their loved ones. Gifting friends or family members with an adorable new puppy or kitten is popular but not recommended for several reasons.

Pets require a lifetime commitment, which includes time and financial demands. Unprepared new pet parents might regret the gift, and even re-gift the pet (sometimes to our overwhelmed animal care centers!).

Before surprising someone with a pet as a gift, here are some things to consider:

  • Determine the level of interest in owning a pet.
  • Will they be a responsible pet owner?
  • If the recipient is a child, will the parents assume care for the animal? Have the parents agreed to bringing a new pet into their home?
  • Will they have enough free time to tend to the pet’s needs?
  • Are they able and willing to accept the ongoing financial responsibilities of pet ownership?

Is this a surprise? We recommend that the recipient is able to pick out their own pet and have the opportunity to bond with the animal before bringing it home.

A home-made gift certificate can be presented to the gift recipient. Gift givers can create and print out a personal gift certificate on their own personal computer to give to the recipient.

Once you contemplate the answers to the points above and decide to give a gift of a precious pet, remember that the County of Los Angeles Department of Animal Care and Control has hundreds of wonderful animals in its seven animal care centers.

Find your nearest animal care center here.

Also, if you determine a pet may not be the best gift this holiday season and have a close friend or relative that loves animals, there are other ways to recognize their love for animals. A donation in their name to the Los Angeles County Animal Care Foundation is a wonderful way to support our work on behalf of animals in need.

Also, you may share with them some amazing opportunities DACC has to foster a loving animal and/or participate in their foster or volunteer programs.

Pets are the gifts that keep on giving with their unconditional love. Let’s make sure they are a welcome addition to the family so they and their new pet parents can enjoy a lifetime of devotion to each other.

Happy holidays to you and your loved ones!

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Microchipped Dog Stolen From Sherman Oaks Home Reunited With Owner



SHERMAN OAKS (KABC) — A dog that was stolen from a Sherman Oaks home during a burglary last week has been reunited with her owner.

Stella, a 4-year-old labradoodle, was the most prized possession stolen from Barbara Goodhill’s home last Friday.

“She probably was trusting when they took her,” Goodhill said. “She’s just a bundle of joy and spirit and I guess too friendly for her own good.”

Goodhill went around her neighborhood posting flyers and offering a $500 reward, no questions asked, for Stella’s return.

Tuesday morning, Stella was brought into an Animal Services clinic in Downey by a man who said the dog was following him.Her microchip was scanned and she was reunited with Goodhill. Police still want to talk to two people […]

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Pets & Animals

‘Sexy Vegan’ Sentenced, Loses Dogs Over Butt Licking Incident



LOS ANGELES — A 37-year-old man entered a no contest plea today in connection to a video he posted with a dog, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Sexy Vegan, aka Hansel DeBartolo III, of West Hollywood entered the plea to one misdemeanor count of disturbing the peace in case 9SC03436.

Deputy District Attorney Bradley Lieberman said Vegan was immediately sentenced to two years of summary probation, 100 hours of community service and 52 weeks of a sexual offender program.

In addition, the defendant’s dogs which were previously seized will not be returned and he will be prohibited from owning any new animals during his probationary period. 

On Sept. 5, 2019, Vegan posted a video on a social media account depicting a pit bull licking the defendant’s rear end, the prosecutor said.

He initially pleaded not guilty on September 27 for allegedly sexually assaulting his dog, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced at the time. He was charged with one misdemeanor count each of sexual assault on an animal and posting obscene matter.

He was facing up to one year in county jail if convicted on the initial charges.

The case was investigated by the Los Angeles County Sherriff’s Department.

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Pets & Animals

Mother & Daughter Plead No Contest to Stealing Dog From Elderly Man



Sgt. Dave Schilling holds dog recovered from home in South Gate and undated photo of Chewie (Credit: Long Beach Police Department)

LOS ANGELES — A woman and her mother each pleaded no contest today to stealing a dog from a 72-year-old man in Long Beach in April, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Erika Juarez Trujillo and Patricia Juarez, both of South Gate, entered the plea to one misdemeanor count each of petty theft.

They were immediately sentenced by Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Daniel Lowenthal to three years’ summary probation, 30 days of community labor, modified animal neglect classes, an online animal cruelty course and a 100-yard stay-away order from the incident’s location.

In April, the victim was walking a small dog when Trujillo pushed the victim, grabbed the dog and fled in a car drive by Juarez, prosecutors said.

The case was investigated by the Long Beach Police Department.

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