Barbaric practices in Australia’s greyhound racing are exposed

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We’ve heard the lies before from greyhound racing insiders, going back many years, but the ABC Four Corners report out of Australia should finally rip the biggest scab of all from the barbaric industry.

We’re seeing the horrible reports of deaths and injuries in the United States, as finally the horrific numbers are seeing more sunshine. What’s going on in Australia is especially barbaric and measures up directly with dog fighting.

The video report by Four Corners opens with an on-camera interview with Debra Arnold – president of the United Queensland Greyhounds Association. She denies any knowledge of live baiting

But the report immediately shows her at a live-baiting session. This practice is used to train the dogs to go after the mechanical rabbit more aggressively during races.

Thankfully, Animal Liberation Queensland and Animal Australia have been working to expose live baiting across Australia.

A number of big-time names in dog racing there are exposed in the report, some of them outright denying any knowledge of live bating. And then we see videos of these very same people directly involved in the practice.

These people are in the same scale with those who operate dog-fighting operations. On an evolutionary scale they rank at the bottom, just above terrorists and those who abuse children and on par with dog fighters.

The videos in the report show operators laughing and joking about the suffering of the animals. It is disgusting on a scale I can’t put into words. In one clip, the evil operator laughs as he notes the brutalized animal with a broken spine is still alive. Yes, he laughs. These are people with no moral compass whatsoever.

Some of the top names in the sport are exposed – so this isn’t some lower level operation. Some of the videos show people celebrating at big greyhound racing events, from awards banquets to major races.

Because of these horrors that have been exposed and with the lies of denial so easily spewing from the people involved, the only option is to ban greyhound racing in Australia forever.

And of course, we’ve seen denials  in the United States. Racing insiders deny dogs are being killed and claim 95 percent of all racing dogs here make it out of the industry alive, as either pets or being cared for within the walls of the industry.

Are we supposed to actually believe that? No reasonable person would. And no reasonable person could believe much of anything out of anyone directly involved in greyhound racing in Australia – now or in the future.

Now that the horrors are on full display, the companies that are sponsoring greyhound racing across the world need to understand that any further sponsorships means they are putting their stamps of approval on these horrors.

As for ABC Four Corners, this is what journalism should be about. We need more of this sort of reporting on any number of topics, where people or industries are abusing people or animals.

I’ll be posting more about this news this week, including how it ties into ag-gag laws and what other sites are reporting.

Stunningly Clueless: TV show and guest promote puppy stores

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In an era where the horrors of puppy mills are gaining more and more attention on a national scale, we are still regularly reminded that the message needs even more exposure.

Stores that sell puppies are still in business because enough people are still uneducated concerning pass-production breeding operations. Too many people still operated under the false notion that they’ll know what they’re getting if they buy puppies in stores or by merely visiting a website.

It is one level of clueless to buy a puppy without visiting the breeding operation or otherwise taking steps to ensure the level of quality for the breeder – but it takes clueless to an extreme level to actually blindly promote buying puppies from stores.

Thanks should go out to Kathy and her blog “Raining Cats and Dogs” on the Chicago Now website for exposing a story that highlights clueless to Level 10.

Fox 32 Chicago aired a fluff piece leading up to Valentine’s Day, where a guest gleefully suggested that people surprise their loved one on the holiday with puppies from stores.

As Kathy rightfully noted in her blog post from Feb. 14, people should never give animals as surprise gifts – especially when it comes to this sort of purchase. Pets are a lifetime commitment – not a box of chocolates or a necklace.

Check out the video posted on link above and observe how happy the guest is to offer up such terrible advice. And the host just bubbles his way through the segment too.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Huge spike of late in greyhound racing news

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The Pack News Wire is off the charts for breaking news out greyhound racing – in the US and overseas.

Of course, in the United States we are getting legislative reports that bring hope that we might see at least the decoupling of dog racing from casinos. If casinos in states like Florida and West Virginia are allowed to drop dog races, we could see a substantial number of tracks shut down.

This would be great news for the dogs.

A WUSF article from Feb, 13 quoted David Bishop of the Florida Greyhound Association. He challenges the extremely troubling findings of the new report published by GREY2K USA and the ASPCA. He is wrong about the report, but I hope his prediction comes true very soon.

“Let’s make no mistake about it. If passed, it would end greyhound racing in the state of Florida.”

Rep. Jared Moskowitz (D-Coral Springs) of Florida is a proponent of decoupling and he was joined by Republican Representative Matt Gaetz at a news conference this week. Hopefully, they can introduce at minimum a decoupling bill right away.

NWFDailyNews.com quoted Gaetz Thursday as saying, “I am convinced we will sometime soon see the end of greyhound racing, a barbaric practice that has no place in our society.”

Moskowitz was quoted in an article by the Florida Times-Union:

“This is about businesses being able to make a decision for themselves. Florida, for all the talk about free enterprise, for all the talk about liberty, for all the talk about not having government in the way of over-regulating, Florida actually mandates that a business runs its business like it’s 1997.”

And then there’s Jack Cory, who the Times-Union quoted as a lobbyist for greyhound breeders and dog trainers.

“It would be the end of greyhound racing and the beginning of the expansion of 13 casinos,”

I keep seeing this argument used by dog racing supporters. It amounts to one gambling operation slamming another for being a gambling operation. The quote can be translated to “If we no longer get to operate our gambling operations that kill and injure dogs, it will only lead to more gambling that doesn’t kill or injure dogs.

I don’t gamble at all and don’t even buy lottery tickets. But that’s another strong case for banning greyhound racing. Let people bet on cards dice or machines.

We continue to see more news about ending dog racing in West Virgina, where a new report shows what a loser the industry is on an economic level in the state, as it is in Florida.

The MetroNews ran a commentary Friday by Hoppy Kercheval, who quotes State Senate Finance Committee Chairman Mike Hall (R-Putnam) as saying, “Something is going to be done; it’s just a matter of time.”

In Australia, the news is nothing short of disgustingly cruel. The Sydney Morning Herald reports more than 20 greyhound owners and trainers have been suspended for using live animals as bait and lures for training.

After the raids on the sites, it is alleged that live rabbits, piglets, lambs and poultry were being used in the barbaric training. This industry has a long history of animal cruelty and in recent years, despite new reports such as this, the insiders want us to believe things have changed.

The Courier Mail out Australia reports Racing Queensland has created a task force to address the reports of live baiting and other acts of cruelty.

ABC Four Corners is set to broadcast a report this weekend titled – “Making A Killing.” The article suggests the piece will expose the “gruesome underbelly’’ of greyhound racing.

Here we are in 2015 and every time new reports of cruelty, drug use and cheating come out of dog racing, its defenders act as if it’s something new. And in this case, somehow they decide that it’s finally time for an investigation.

Another trainer in Australia is under investigation for allegedly shooting and killing two of his racing dogs.

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Report: Kennel passes AKC inspection days prior to horrible conditions being uncovered

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It’s another bad grade for the America Kennel Club and the current rubber-stamp system of inspecting breeding operations. The Humane Society of the United States reported yesterday on a breeding kennel in Mississippi, where a former American Kennel Club champion dog was founding living in feces.

Wild Bill, an Australian Cattle Dog had been living with 60 other dogs on what is being described as a puppy mill.

In the report on his Humane Nation blog, Wayne Pacelle states:

Some of the worst facilities wave around their AKC credentials like a badge of honor, and draw consumers away from better sources of dogs, such as animal shelters and rescue groups and responsible breeders.

As is the case in greyhound racing, when a dog is no longer making money, it becomes disposable for the puppy-mill industry.

We need a system of regular inspections by qualified inspectors in every state in the nation.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Anti-adoption column is stunningly misguided

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A reader posted a link to a column that can best be described as misguided. I was stunned that anyone might come to the conclusions that writer Erin Auerbach reached after her experiences in adopting homeless dogs.

She leads off her Washington Post opinion piece from July of 2014 with a quote that goes to the heart of why we adopt homeless pets -“Why buy while those in shelters die?” And then she abandoned the statement of compassion completely.

Auerbach notes she adopted homeless dogs before writing the column. But somehow she came to a point where she switched her mentality.

She faced the pain of loss after a couple of her rescues faces illnesses and now it means her love will go to dogs purchased from breeders only  – not the very animals in need she previously helped.

She states – “Rescue and shelter dogs are a crapshoot.”

Unbelievable. The crapshoot for dogs comes as the result of horrible breeding practices that result in health and mental disorders. The crapshoot comes as a result of abuse or neglect. It is a subset of humans who created these problems.

But rather than speak out against those people, she calls the dogs a “crapshoot.”

I could better understand if someone was stung by the loss of a pet and stated they just cannot go through that pain anymore. But to go there and jump off track to say you have the love to give, just not to the rescue pets, is unimaginable to me.

She might not have wanted to come across this way, but her writing feels like she is blaming the dogs. The reality is the fault all lies with poor breeding practices or abuse or neglect or being taken from a mother too soon – all the fault of some humans.

She also misses an extraordinarily import principle. We don’t rescue dogs just to give something to ourselves. We rescue to save lives and offer compassion and love to animals in need.

To put it bluntly, Auerbach’s piece was irresponsible and she should produce an apology.

Thankfully, Lisa LaFontaine, the President and CEO of the Washington Humane Society wrote a column for Huffington Post to counter Auerbach’s claims.

LaFontaine is on the front lines of the problem and the effort to educate the public, while Auerbach has produced something that could steer people away from saving lives through adoption.

If everyone or even a substantial number of people took Auerbach’s advice it would lead to millions more homeless pets dying every year. It is bluntly irresponsible.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Article paints a picture of reality for bad breeding practices

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We’re seeing a positive trend in the spreading of information about breeding practices and how they are impacting the health and welfare of dogs.

The latest entry is from Sara Boboltz of the Huffington Post. It is well worth the read. She goes into everything from line breeding inbreeding to the horrible breeding that has deformed the English Bulldog, leading to the risk of breathing problems.

And Boboltz these dogs can’t swim and the puppies have to be delivered by delivered by cesarian section.

Dr. Louise Murray, vice president of the ASPCA Animal Hospital, is quoted as saying the dog breeds we see today are “human constructs,” meaning they are on the unnatural side. I’ve called it forced evolution.

Check out the article and the comment section.

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Westminster Kennel Club spokesman just admitted breeds are mixed to create new breeds

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The spokesperson for the Westminster Kennel Club just admitted on the Today Show that the new breeds for this year’s dog show are nothing more than a product of mixing breeds together.

So what does that make the dogs? Say it with me …. “mixed breeds” or “mutts.”

Of course the club would never put the system in these terms, although it is factually correct. And of course all breeds have resulted from mixing different dogs together to come up the physical appearance of the current breeds. The process might have started years ago – even thousands of years ago for particular breeds, but the breeds of dog that Westminster and other kennel clubs promote are nothing more than wolf-hybrids.

All dogs are wolf-mutts.

The shows and the kennel clubs and their promotions are actually nothing more than a promotional system to drive the price of puppies. They want people to watch the shows and follow groups like the AKC to popularize the breeds and promote the purchasing of more puppies.

Don’t fall for it. The shelter dog is worth just as much. In fact, the shelter dogs are in many cases the survivors of a horrible breeding system. The breed standards are actually detrimental to dogs.

I’ll have more on this soon. And also coming right up will be my take on the new greyhound racing report from GREY 2K and the ASPCA. There’s a lot of animal welfare news flooding cyberspace and the airways out right now.

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Kayla Mueller – Hero and Example for Everyone to Follow

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We live a world scarred by evil. The current, prominent example is ISIS – along with other terrorists and dictators who are torturing and killing or otherwise oppressing innocent people.

And then we have people like Kayla Mueller, who are the defenders of the oppressed, downtrodden and less fortunate in the world. It is unjust on a horrible scale to realize an organization like ISIS is responsible for taking the life of someone so enormously good like Mueller.

In my view, the best way to honor Kayla’s memory is to stand up for what she believed in. It’s about caring for people who are less fortunate and those who are being abused. She cared about other people and put her life on the line to help.

In an era where terrorism is using fear to gain a footing and greed is taking an ever-growing bite out of our economic stability and moral fiber – we need more people like Kayla on the planet. We need more people who are guided by compassion.

This is the basis of the battle playing out before us – Compassion vs. Greed. Terrorism is an element of greed.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

One more important point concerning the North Carolina effort to regulate puppy mills

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The American Kennel Club has been at the forefront of opposition to improved breeding regulations across the nation, measures that could shut down more puppy mills.

But of course, the AKC receives funding through breeding operations. The more breeders, the more money. So when a state like North Carolina introduces a bill that might close down breeding operations that do not meet minimum standards of care, the AKC kicks its opposition into high gear.

The WRAL article I linked to yesterday included the following:

The bill would not apply to dogs being bred or kept as hunting dogs or show dogs and would only apply to breeders with 10 or more breeding females on the premises.

But the AKC has said it is unfair to regulate breeders more stringently than other dog owners, and it has objected to any state inspection of facilities.

True, the bill should regulate all breeders. But to suggest breeders would be regulated more stringently than “other dog owners” is categorically false. If a family was caught treating their pets the way puppy-mill breeders are allowed to treat their dogs, the family would be charged with animal cruelty every time.

As it stands now in North Carolina, breeders are getting preferred treatment and protection from prosecution.
And to the reference to the AKC’s opposition to state inspections, it’s only about what the breeders have to hind, isn’t it? Quality breeders have nothing to hide.
So this is all about protecting substandard breeding operations – period.
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