Weekend Journal: Lions, Tigers, & BEERS. Plus, Money-Saving Travel Tips, & iBark In The Park

FIRST GUEST: Tammy Thies, Founder and Executive Director of the Wildcat Sanctuary

95% of the tigers in America are privately-owned. The Humane Society of the United States estimates that makes up about 10,000 big cats! Why is this statistic so shocking? Tigers are wildcats. When a tiger is held captive as a pet or for profit, it’s no longer living as a wildcat the way it was meant to.

Thankfully, there are organizations such as the Wildcat Sanctuary to provide a natural habitat for big cats in the hopes of ending this captive wildlife crisis. It’s motto: “Keep the wild in your heart, not your home.”

Tammy tells us about the 100+ cats living at the Sanctuary up in Minnesota, who were rescued from 29 states and even from other countries. Many of these cats were mistreated and declawed, which is a huge problem for cats big and small. Not only is declawing incredibly painful, but it often leads to infection. It also is a more involved surgery than most humans realize, involving an amputation for each claw. (Imagine each of your fingers and toes being amputated to the last knuckle.) These amputations make it difficult for the cat to walk, which can lead to arthritis and other health issues. Declawed cats also have no way of defending themselves. (Learn more about the negative effects of declawing at pawproject.org.)

Now through April 30th, all donations to The Wildcat Sanctuary are worth double because of the Miracle Match! Cat lovers can make a contribution here.

Or you can come to the Northdown Taproom on June 12th for “Lions, Tigers, and Beers.” Yes, you read that right: Lions, Tigers, and BEERS. Drinking beer to save cats? Yes. Sign me up.

Learn more about the Wildcat Sanctuary and their mission at wildcatsanctuary.org.

SECOND GUEST: Lauren Volcheff, Last Minute Travel Club VP Sales and Marketing

Have you started thinking about your summer vacation yet? With smartphones and travel apps changing the way we plan for travel, it’s never been easier to get a great deal!

Lauren offers five money-saving tips for travelers:

1) Book your hotel through an “opaque” travel agency website.  You’ll know everything except the name of the hotel, but you’ll get a better price than if you book directly with the hotel.

2) Rent or share a home to save money.

3) Last-minute sales can save a bundle. Many hotels and airlines turn to wholesalers to sell unsold rooms and seats.

4) Off-season flights can be the cheapest. Also, try to book on a Tuesday, when airlines typically have their sales. And, depart or arrive on a Tuesday or Thursday, which tend not to be busy travel days.

5) Join a discount travel club.

And, remember to ask the locals where they like to go. You’ll have a much more memorable experience at the local eatery than you will at a big national chain restaurant.

Learn more at lastminutetravel.com.

THIRD GUEST: Dr. Robyn Barbiers, President of the Anti-Cruelty Society

Every May, the Anti-Cruelty Society, helping animals in Chicago since 1899, hosts one of their biggest fundraisers at Montrose Harbor: Bark in the Park. Unfortunately, due to the outbreak of canine influenza, it’s been cancelled– kind of.

Instead of everyone bringing their pooches to one place and risking their health, Bark in the Park has moved online! Visit ibarkinthepark.org to make a contribution through May 15th. You can also still enter your doggy in the best dressed and best trick contests!

Dr. Robyn also tells us what warning signs to look for when it comes to the dog flu. Is your pooch suddenly feeling lethargic? Coughing? Fever? Yes, the symptoms are much like the human flu, and it comes on very suddenly. Talk to your vet to make sure you know what steps you can take to keep your dog healthy!

Other ways you can help the Anti-Cruelty Society are by adopting a pet, volunteering, or donating items from their wishlist. Learn more at anticruelty.org.

Weekend Journal airs Sunday mornings at 6:30 on US99.5 and 6:00 on US99.5 HD2 The Wolf.

Listen to this week’s full episode below.




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