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Tyson is a strapping young lad with a heart of gold! He came to us from a home where he and a bunch of other dogs were being bred and sold, but not any longer! Tyson is a calm, mellow dude…a gentle giant. He is easy going and just loves to be pet.
He’d love a quiet home with older children where he can just relax and feel safe. He has done well with the dogs he has met so far! Tyson good looks will draw you in, but it’s his personality will make you fall in love!
Tyson is one of the dogs in the SPCA of Westchester’s “The Way Home” program, which is supported (in part) by the Tortorella Foundation. Click here to learn more about “The Way Home.”
Tyson & all of the SPCA of Westchester’s animals can be seen at www.spca914.org and the SPCA of Westchester is located in Briarcliff Manor, NY.
Ella Enchanted (click here for more on Ella’s story) was neglected, emaciated and had heart and whip worms when we first learned about her. With a few donations to help with her medical treatment, including a large donation from John & Christine Tortorella, Ella was able to receive the treatment she needs in order to start her recovery and preparations for a new home — Thanks in large part to the Lake Charles Pitbull Rescue in Virginia (via Furbaby Rescue of NC).
Ella has made huge progress, but is still a little timid when she first meets someone.
“She is just the sweetest thing and gentle even when she plays,” said Destiny Shell of the Lake Charles Pitbull Rescue chapter in Virginia that currently has Ella. “She is good in her crate and hasnt had any potty accidents in the house. Once we get her more trust I with new people she will make an amazing family pet. And she’s just a little bitty thing.”
Still, Ella has large medical bills. The Tortorellas are excited about Ella’s progress and want to help more! The Tortorellas have offered to match funds toward Ella’s medical bill up to $500! That means any amount you give will be doubled by the Tortorellas. Please donate to help with Ella’s treatment by clicking the PayPal button below. Thank You!
Lola was brought to WHS as a stray October 1st, 2007 and on October 2nd 2012, after 5 long years, she finally found her wonderful forever mom.
Lola is doing very well and I can’t believe it has been almost a year since I adopted her! We actually moved. I already started a walking routine with her in the morning so she gets familiar with our new digs and the neighborhood.
Through the year, Lola has shown signs of separation anxiety or at least what I think is separation anxiety (based on information you gave me and my vet). I would leave for work or leave home for a few hours and she will some times pee or rummage through things. What is interesting is that she doesn’t chew things up (unless it’s trash and food related) but she pulls things down from tables and leaves it on the floor. She has a tendency to find the trash if I do not secure it enough, and she goes through it.
To try to fix this, I walked her a lot more before leaving, bought the spray recommended by the vet and pet stores that prevents her from chewing on things and I have a lot of toys for her to keep her busy. So far, some of that has worked. We are still working on it.
A great development has been her being able to get along with my parents’ basset hound! She and Lucy walk together, lay around the house together and we can even leave them alone when going out. I’ve learned that Lola only gets aggressive around other dogs if food is around. So we feed them in separate areas and make sure that treats are distributed carefully.
Lola has really been wonderful, though. Every one who meets her loves her (my Dad especially).
The Tortorella family, since relocating to the West coast, has found a wonderful organization called SALI’s Farm (Semiahmoo Animal League Inc.) that they have chosen to support. The farm is located in Surrey, British Columbia.
SALI’s Farm has multiple programs, one that brings together rescued animals and at-risk children, and together they show each other how to heal. These young children who visit the farm have witnessed or experienced violence.
There is another program that has touched the Tortorellas. SALI has assisted homeless people who befriend needy animals. SALI offers food and medical care for these animals and their owners, much like Ken and Mack. Ken relies on donated dog food to feed Mack, his very loyal street companion. In the summer of 2013 Ken was trying to find low-income housing and SALI paid for the vet check for Mack and the vaccinations and grooming he needed to live in the housing development. Ken was denied residency there, but was offered other housing that would not allow Mack to join him. Ken decided to live on the street with Mack, rather than without him in a home.
SALI works with other area programs that help low-income families and individuals pay veterinary bills to get much-needed vet care, including care for a dog who needed to have his leg amputated so she would not be put down, providing care to two dogs who were left behind when a woman and her children were forced to leave a violent home and assisting with cost and care to spay and neuter cats in a area reserve.
For more information or to support this organization, visit SALI.ca. Click Here to make a donation to SALI: “Our mission is to honour, nurture and protect the human-animal bond. We help at-risk children, at-risk people and at-risk animals.”
From fundraising for cancer research to handing out free school supplies to the children of Hillsborough County’s migrant workers, from supporting seat-belt awareness to volunteering at Tampa’s The Children’s Home and the Child Abuse Council, Tortorella and Christine get their hands dirty. Read more here
Christine Tortorella is a children’s book author who has published several books with music and a dream journal. All of the proceeds from those book sales go back into the foundation’s literacy program. Dobugshavebellybuttons.com features Christine’s stories and other artists and musicians. Christine and her daughter, Brittany, are currently working to publish a new story about a pelican named Stubby who was injured by fishing line left in the water by fishermen in the Gulf of Mexico (near Merry Pier Bate Shop on Pass a grille). The story, Stubby & Rusty, was written by Brittany for a master’s level class project designed to teach children and their parents how these animals are affected by what humans do and how we can prevent these injuries!
The Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary, located along the gulf coast in Florida, takes in injured animals like Stubby, treats them, cares for them and releases them when they can. When they can’t, they keep the birds at the facility. The Seabird Sanctuary rescues between 30-50 birds every day and feeds all of its animals about 450 lbs of herring every day!! However, due to the gulf oil spill and recent storms stirring up the water, fishing has become less productive, increasing the price of the fish. The Seabird Sanctuary is fundraising, with a goal of $100,000, what they expect it will cost to feed the birds in 2013 and keep the Seabird Sanctuary afloat.
For more information on the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary, please visit seabirdsanctuary.com.
Christine Tortorella enjoyed the opportunity to work at Children’s Village in Dobbs Ferry, NY with 12 young boys and their mentors, as they prepared to perform at the annual fundraiser in May.
The dinner gala hosted over 400 people and featured the boys art work, as they sang “Choose Your Stone,” written by Christine for the event. Children’s Village’s mission is to work in partnership with families to help societies most vulnerable youth. The boys and their mentors, under the guidance of teachers and volunteers, worked together for several months at their after-school program, on “good words” poetry and graffiti art, which was displayed on the big screen as they sang the song.
The Tortorella Family Foundation provided new sneakers and ties, which the boys wore at the event and were thrilled they got to keep as their own. The night was a success for the Children’s Village, as the Board of Directors, staff and guests watched these young people stand bravely and perform the song and poetry they helped create. Each guest was invited to take a ‘good word stone’ painted by the boys, from their table center piece, to remind them “we all choose” what we do to help others. For more information on this event and on the services provided to NYC area youth at risk, please visit www.ChildrensVillage.org.
Brittany Tortorella makes a special visit to read to the children. The children especially enjoyed listening to Annie and Little One, the musical story book about self esteem and friendship.
Miss Tortorella has a Masters in Childhood Education and is working in elementary education in New York state. She was a “reading guest” to Miss Sammi Arndt’s first grade classroom at Corr Elementary in Apollo Beach, Florida.
Brittany is working toward establishing a career in education and is developing a reading and writing program for the Tortorella Family Foundation.All the children in the classroom received their own copy of “Annie and Little One” and a story book journal to use in writing and drawing their own stories. The children were overjoyed to use them during their writer’s work shop time.
Christine Tortorella has written several books, which can be found at www.dobugshavebellybuttons.com. All of the proceeds from the sales of her books go back into the Tortorella Foundation to benefit literacy programs throughout the country. Annie & Little One is now available in hardcover. Click here to order.
The Tortorella Foundation is proud to share the opening of a wonderful new fenced-in area for the dogs and cats at the Westchester Humane Society!
For the first time in the lives of these specials animals (at least those who’ve lived at the shelter for years), they get to run and play with toys that they have not been able to play with in their small kennel runs. The toys sat in a drawer, mostly unusable, because the animals can’t play with them unwatched due to choking hazzards. Now they can run and play and socialize with other dogs and get training!
The Tortorella Foundation and family is incredibly excited about this major improvement to WHS!