Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel features the real problems with substandard dog breeding

No Gravatar

I was really pleased to see that Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel has dipped into this issue of dog shows and breed standards – through the American Kennel Club and others – and horrible breeding practices in general.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

AKC on the wrong side of the puppy mill debate – in a huge way

No Gravatar

The American Kennel Club continues to stand on the wrong side of the push to shut down puppy mills. The last straw is the movement in my home state of North Carolina, where HB930 made through a full vote in the state House by a huge margin. But the bill is currently stalled in the Senate.

The measure contains guidelines based on the AKC standards of care. Yet the AKC is now in a position of opposing a movement to set these standards statewide.

An article that ran April 4 on the WGHP website quotes from a statement offered up by the AKC -

“The American Kennel Club believes that devoting more resources to enforcing current laws is a better solution than more regulation. North Carolina’s Animal Welfare Act already provides laws to govern the care of animals. Recent law enforcement actions against substandard kennels demonstrate that these laws work. The priority should be on providing local law enforcement with the resources they need to properly enforce these laws.”

There are some real problems with this statement. One is the fact that law enforcement offices all around the map are calling for clear-cut standards and often we see that conditions have to reach a horrible level before they can step in.

To suggest that current laws are enough in states like North Carolina is to loose all credibility. It is just not a statement based on the facts at hand. Yes, we need to see the laws enforced. But the regulations are currently very weak in NC.

In addition, we have a system of inspections in place for rescue shelters – yet nothing like this at all for breeding operations. Yes, the people and groups who rescue dogs and those who take in dogs pulled from puppy mills are inspected. But the puppy mills are not.

HB930 does not contain a system for inspections. I wish it did. But you can be sure that groups the AKC would throw full tantrums if inspections were in the bill. The last thing they want is for breeding operations to face improved standard of care and inspections.

 

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Great video – using clips from ads and news reels – to show the dangers of the Keystone XL pipeline

No Gravatar

A must-see video concerning the dangers of the Keystone XL pipeline and the misinformation swirling around.

Anybody want these spills in your backyard?

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Trailer: Drill, Spill, Repeat? – It can happen again in the Gulf of Mexico

No Gravatar

Oceana has released a trailer for its new documentary concerning the BP Oil Gusher – and the ongoing threats four years later.

For more information, go to Oceana.org.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Interesting new rules imposed for greyhound racing in Australia

No Gravatar

I’ll place the following news under the heading of “I’ll believe it when I see it.”

The Australian Associated Press reports new animal-welfare standards have been imposed on greyhound racing. The main regulation we need to keep an eye on, according to the article:

Dogs will be required to stay under the care of a registered owner for their lifetime, unless retired as a pet.

The RSPCA notes over-breeding of greyhounds has led to “a vast population of surplus unwanted dogs.” This of course is true for puppy-mill breeding and greyhound racing everywhere.

But will the industry really follow this rule? Will the industry insiders really properly care for the dogs who are not able to find loving homes? How will the dogs live who don’t find homes?

 

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Video shows examples of actions that show self-awareness in dogs

No Gravatar

More evidence that dogs have self-awareness. Those rubs feel great and they want more.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Family picks up sled dog racing as a hobby – fails on understanding dogs

No Gravatar

When families look for a new hobby, it typically means they pick up boating or bike riding or hiking or golf or camping or something along these lines. It is not the case for one Wisconsin family, who decided to dip into sled dog racing.

One particular quote in the Washington Times article deserves a Wacky Statement of the Week Award. The dad in the story says – “These dogs live to race, and they’re like part of our family.” BUT, it is immediately noted that he went on to add that he believes canines should live outside. So does he force any of his human family members to live outside?

Dogs suffer and die in sled dog racing and the dogs are typically forced to live outside – tied to a tiny wooden dog house on a short tether. It’s not a hobby. It’s a cruel activity.

 

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Wacky Quote of the Week: by Canadian Fisheries Minister, in reference to the seal hunt

No Gravatar

Canadian Fisheries Minister Gail Shea is upset that animal-welfare advocates are road-blocking the trade of seal meat with China. She is highly offended that people are actually against the brutal beating or shooting deaths of a massive number of baby seals.

Shea is offended that anyone would try to stop people from torturing seals. I wonder what her opinion of dog fighting is?

And there was this trade agreement with China, to send seal meat there. Europe already shut down the trade for these cruelty-based “products.” Now, China is reviewing the matter, according to the Canadian Press.

So get this: The Canadian Press quoted Shea as saying – “We have to keep telling the world that this is a sustainable hunt. It’s a humane hunt.”

“It’s a humane hunt.” Can she possibly believe this? No one with a sliver of education in science – or biology at least – could believe this. Nothing about the annual Canadian seal hunt is humane. The Canadian Press reports the quota for seal killing has been set at 400,000.

But I get it. Shea wants to defend the industry. But that one sentence wipes her credibility completely off the chart.

 

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Sebelius is out – and it’s a good thing – and your dog agrees with me

No Gravatar

I never supported Kathleen Sebelius having a role in any level of government and your dog agrees with me. Now that she has announced her resignation as secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, I consider it the correction of a long-running mistake.

If you read this blog post to your dogs, that look on their face actually says, “Grady is right. That person is no lover of dogs.”

Admittedly, I have one, primary reason for not supporting Sebelius. She supported greyhound racing in Kansas. She didn’t merely look the other way, she openly supported dog racing. In this century, with all of the information available with a few Internet clicks, she supports dog racing.

It’s the kind of stand that – in my view – disqualifies someone from holding office. It shows a level of poor decision-making abilities. It indicates the individual has been lazy in researching information about the subject at hand.

Appointing Sebelius was a huge mistake. It ranks up there with voters in Iowa electing Rep. Steve King, who fought against regulations to punish those who attend dog fights.

 

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Wacky columnist seems to be anti-gambling – unless dogs are involved

No Gravatar

Former Florida lieutenant governor Jeff Gottcamp wrote a column that ran on two websites – SunSentinel and Florida Today. In the editorial, Gottcamp seems to take an anti-gambling stance but also seems to support greyhound racing.

After reading the OpEd, I’m not sure he knows what he’s for or against – unless he’s simply pro-dog racing and this was a means to a new twist on supporting the industry. This latest push for decoupling of greyhound racing from the casinos might have turned into another way to warp the debate.

He notes voters turned down casino gambling, three times in three different decades. And he suggest a move to expand gambling in the state would violate its constitution.
Then he challenges the accurate suggestion that forcing the casinos to hold dog races violates free-market principles, by writing – “Let’s be clear — there is nothing free market about gambling. It is a highly regulated industry for a reason.”

Funny – since greyhound racing is not a highly-regulated industry at all. But then the gears are switched on the editorial and he rightfully notes the millions of dollars in tax breaks that has gone to dog racing and the casinos. But he goes around to the other side with the foll0wing:

If racetracks are free to operate as gambling facilities without being required to have live races — the very purpose for their existence — in a very short period of time we would see a massive expansion of casino-style gambling in Florida as the racetracks cut deals with casino operators.

Whhhaaaatt? The very purpose of the casinos existence is to make money off gambling. The only difference it would make, if one option for gambling no longer existed – dog racing – is that dogs would no longer suffer and die.

To suggest that simply by dropping the mandate that dog races be held somehow more gambling would follow, is more than wacky. How does he even think this stuff up? There are other motions on the Florida table for gambling, but merely ending dog racing would not directly lead to more gambling. That’s just wacky mentality.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic