H 52° L 37°
Partly Cloudy | 10MPH

Going Home and Homecoming

shelter, rescue, pets, HAWS, fundraiser, raffle, football

Have you heard about our alligator?

About 2 weeks ago an actual alligator was caught in Big Muskego Lake and transported to HAWS.  While not the kind of "stray" we usually see, it wasn't completely unheard of here.  Exotics have their own fans, but most homes and people don't have the right housing for an animal that starts as small as 8" and can grow and grow and grow.  This particular 'gator was about 3 years of age and had already grown to at least 3 ft. - hard to keep THAT in an aquarium.

So where did it come from?  No, it isn't a native species - no need to add that to your list of worries.  And most assuredly it wouldn't have lasted the winter if not caught as it was.  He was pretty healthy when he got to HAWS, but already getting chilled from our cooler September temps.  So most likely Mr. Gator hadn't been in the lake too very long.

We'll never know exactly how he got into the lake, but we can guess.

Our friends at the U of Illinois and Greater Chicago Herpetological Society tell us that they fish about 100 or so alligators out of the Chicago River and area waterways.  Most often these are pets that were purchased as babies - under 12" and not even weighing a pound - by someone who thought it "would be cool to have a pet that no one else has."  Well, there's a reason no one else them as pets:  they aren't a domestic creature, and unless you live in a zoo or have vast experience with exotics, chances are you don't have the environment or means to meet their needs.

So what happens to the "cool" pet when it gets too big?  It gets dumped to fend for itself.  Bad idea.

This guy lucked out - our U of I friends will transport him to a southern state and more appropriate habitat.  He's gone home.

But let this be an educational moment: 
(1)  Do your homework before getting ANY pet - really understand what you're getting in to!
(1a)  Adopt from HAWS - we've got a great selection of adoptable pets and lots of resources and helpful people to make your relationship with your pet a long-term success.
(2)  If you can't keep your pet, call someone - like US at HAWS - rather than just letting your pet go.  We're here to help and we've got lots of friends and resources, too!

By the way - HAWS Homecoming is October 16th - get your tickets today!  And you don't have to attend our event to buy raffle tickets for our Big Game TV raffle - tickets are available at HAWS today.  For only $20 you'll get a chance to win a 42" LG flat screen TV.  Now THAT'S a game worth playing!


Calling All Boy Scouts!

Calling All Boy Scouts!    

Join us at the Wisconsin Humane Society to work on the requirements needed to earn your Dog Care Merit Badge and have a howlin’ good time!  The Boy Scouts of America and the Wisconsin Humane Society have teamed up to offer this fun and informative clinic.  Now all we need is YOU!

Read more


Don't get me wrong, I think change is good.  I think we need to refresh or improve things so that they can be the good old days in the future.  When we think we are losing some of our innocence, we are usually adding to the quality of life.  Sometimes change for the sake of change is even good.

However, in the world of technology, we have reached a point where change is happening too quickly.  Only fifteen years ago you could buy the top of the line gadget and be satisfied for years that it served your needs.  About the time you needed new features the old one was starting to wear out.  It was called planned obsolescence.  For those that needed to have the best it was a good system.

Read more

Beer Notes

Last month in Denver the 29th Annual Great American Beer Festival was held.  Over 2200 beers were sampled from more than 462 breweries.  The beer judging was done over 79 different categories and the awards were announced during the Saturday afternoon session.  Four Wisconsin breweries were awarded medals and they were:

Stevens Point Brewery received a gold for their Horizon Wheat

Read more

Woodmans Opens

The new Woodmans store is set to open this weekend.  It will be a huge shopping experience.  I am planning to take in this store as soon as possible, but...

We hav tried out the new Pick& Save in the Falls and find this store hard to navigate because of its sheer size.

Read more

The Holidays are Coming!

fundraiser, holiday, pets, photos, Homecoming, adopt

We'll take a break for a moment from planning for this weekend's HAWS Homecoming event (you've heard about HAWS Homecoming, right?) to tell you about another neat upcoming HAWS event.

Holiday Pet Photos are coming!

No, we haven't even celebrated Halloween yet, but when you use pictures of your pet(s) for your Holiday Greeting cards and whatnot, you need them early.  So, think snow for a few minutes, get Fido and Fluffy all gussied up in their Winter finery, and c'mon over for a professional portrait.

Here's all the "poop" you need to know:

  • Pictures will be taken by members of the Unlimited Vision photography club, with all proceeds from the photos supporting the animals, programs and services at HAWS.  This is a Friends of HAWS-sponsored event!
  • Appointments are available on both Saturday, October 23 and Sunday, October 24, between 9:00 a.m. and 4:15 p.m. 
  • The $30 fee includes the photography sitting, one (1) 8”x10” print and two (2) 5”x7” prints. Pet owners will receive a CD of their photos for an additional donation of $5.
  • To reserve their session, pet owners should contact HAWS at 262-542-8851. Sittings will be in 15 minute increments.

By the way - did you really think we'd let this blog end without another plug for Homecoming?  It is coming up this Saturday, October 16th - and you can still purchase tickets by calling us at 262-542-8851, x112.  Don't forget, too, that you can buy raffle tickets at HAWS for the 42" flat screen TV we'll be giving away at the event.  Need not be present to win...but we'd love for you to join us!  (Hint, hint!)

The Ultimate 5th Quarter

Attention all Menomonee Falls and Germantown High School Students!  Join your friends at the Ultimate 5th Quarter this Friday after the football game! The Ultimate 5th Quarter is all about the biggest and best things to do after the football game.

Climb the biggest rock climbing wall.
Rock out with 2 local bands. 

Fight the heat of the biggest bonfire. 

Enjoy the best food. 

Hang out in the biggest game center. 

Win the best prizes.

Read more

FREE WindowAlert Clings to Save Birds

Get up to ten FREE 4-packs of WindowAlerts for just $2.50 shipping and handling per pack, while supplies last, from the Wisconsin Humane Society’s Wildlife Rehabilitation Center.

Up to one billion birds die every year in North America due to window collisions, but their deaths can be prevented by applying simple clings to windows! This initiative to save wild birds is made possible by the generosity of the Rusinow Family Foundation. Fall migration begins in mid-August and continues into November, so get your clings now to save birds heading south for winter.

Read more


Wisconsinites paid a huge price this summer suffering through pretty crummy weather.  Several deluges followed by multiple mosquito swarms pretty much ruined the season.  Routine chores like mowing the lawn or gardening became daunting experiences for fear of being eaten alive.

Payback for all that misery has come in the form of an extremely beautiful and temperate fall.  Warm sunny days with little or no rain has made being outdoors a joyous occasion once again.

Read more

Dog Opens Savings Account at US Bank

U.S. Bank for Bowser
U.S. Bank has launched U.S. Bank for Bowser, a fundraising initiative for animals at the Wisconsin and Ozaukee Humane Societies. Many branches in the region will be selling raffle tickets on behalf of WHS. Bowser, a WHS shelter dog, will also be opening up a special savings account at the Bayside branch on Friday, October 22. You can deposit a donation directly into Bowser's account from any U.S. Bank

Read more

CE & Rec Community Blood Drive - Thursday, November 4

Menomonee Falls Community Education & Recreation in partnership with the Blood Center of Wisconsin is hosting a Community Blood Drive Thursday, November 4 from 3:00 PM to 7:00 PM in rooms 102A & 102B of the Community Center.  The Blood Center of Wisconsin needs donors to help with this worthy cause.  Appointments are recommended, but walk-ins are welcome.  Schedule an appointment online at or call (262) 255-8460.

The Blood Center of Wisconsin is the sole supplier of blood, blood products, research and diagnostic laboratory testing for 54 hospitals in our SE Wisconsin 28 counties.  The 4 Waukesha County hospitals alone use over 20,000 components annually to meet the needs of our friends and loved ones.   

When considering whether to donate blood or not, ask yourself the following question..."In the event my loved one/friend needs a life-saving transfusion, would I not expect a safe & adequate blood supply to be there for him or her?"  One in every five people each of us knows will need a blood transfusion in our lifetime!  Help us help them on November 4.  Schedule an appointment today!   

Your generosity is greatly appreciated!


All dog, puppy and kitten adoption fees will be reduced by 25% today - Wednesday, Oct. 27!  A free tote will also be offered with the adoption of each adult cat. As usual, fees for adult cats are entirely waived, every day of the week!  

We have many puppies and dogs looking for new homes right now. Check out the sweethearts here.

The Kids are Definitely Alright

donate, fundraiser, event, highschool, DECA, students, adopt, pets, shelter, rescue

On Wednesday I joined HAWS' Mobile Adoptions Coordinator Lisa on a field trip to Arrowhead High School.  As you may have read in a past blog, the AHS DECA students decided to raise money and awareness for HAWS as part of their homecoming celebration, "Hawkfest."

The students and their faculty advisor presented HAWS with a check for $2000!  Pictured at left are several of the DECA members, their faculty advisor Steve, HAWS adoptable puppy Trick and Lisa - gladly accepting this truly "big" check.
We are honored and excited to work with groups on events - the Arrowhead DECA group being a shining example of what can be accomplished.  The students did all the "heavy lifting" so to speak - as Lisa said, we just showed up at Hawkfest with our adoptables and had a great time!

Thank you, Arrowhead High School DECA students for making us a part of your 2010 Hawkfest.  You did a phenomenal job with your event and we were proud to join in the fun.  Moms and dads, the kids are more than alright - they're awesome.  Just ask us at HAWS and we'll attest.  Youth rocks!

By the way - if you'd like to do a "fun"draiser for HAWS or have the Mobile Adoptions Center visit your business, event, festival or meeting, please contact us.  Lisa can be reached at or at 262-542-8851, x201.  Be sure to schedule early...dates are filling quickly.

Dog Parade at 1:00p.m. Kicks off Kids Day - TODAY!

Don't miss the Annual Halloween Parade at 1:00 p.m. today! 
All costumed canines will be available for adoption.

Wisconsin Humane Society, 4500 West Wisconsin Avenue, Milwaukee

Read more

Returning to Tanzania

We will be traveling to the airport in just a few hours for our return to Tanzania. Follow our travel updates at You don't need your own Twitter account to read our updates. They are open for everyone to read. Welcome back to Tanzania with Hearts in Unity.

A Sabbatical from Social Networking

This summer I took a one-month sabbatical from all marketing and electronic social networking. No Twitter tweets. No Facebook updates. No blog writing. No updates to the Hearts in Unity website. No newsletters. No video productions. No presentations at schools, churches and to other organizations.

I wanted to prepare my heart and mind for my upcoming return to Tanzania. I wanted to take time to think about the beginning of Hearts in Unity years ago, and where we have come so far in this mission. I wanted quiet time to contemplate the future of the Tanzanian children we support, and to consider how we might best be a part of their future.

Read more

Page Tools

Latest Posts