Well I never would have known to fiddle with the queryobj.php file - since I didn't know it existed! Thank goodness for your help!
The dateremoved field is working perfectly now. The year_removed field was still returning 2000 if I entered 0000 or just a blank field. But you gave me an idea. I went into the structure of the MySQL database and set the attributes of that field to NULL, and None as a default. So now, if we leave it blank, it remains blank. If we enter 0000, it returns as simply 0. If we enter 2015, it returns as 2015. Voila!
Thank you so much for your help with this pesky business!! You don't know how much I appreciate it.