HSUS receiving high marks from charity watchdogs

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Again, I am not a member of any organization. I purposefully steer clear of joining groups so that I can maintain some degree of separation or neutrality between groups.

But too often I see comments challenging the reputation of the Humane Society of the US. It seems some people don’t actually understand what the HSUS does.

So when I saw a recent blog post from Wayne Pacelle, I felt it was important to report on its content.

Pacelle notes Charity Navigator, what he calls “one of the most recognized charity watchdog organizations,” has given the HSUS its highest rating of four stars. And there’s this: “The HSUS also receives the highest ratings from the other reputable charity watchdog groups. The Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance affirms that we meet all 20 of its standards for charitable accountability.”

The organization has been out in front of a variety important issues, such as puppy mills, dog fighting and factory farming. We need the great adoption groups from all across the map and we need local and state organizations that work on regional issues. And we need national groups like the HSUS and the ASPCA and others, that fight the battle on a national and global scale.


PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Off Topic: On issue of PEDs, Larry King strikes out and SI’s Tom Verducci hits a home run

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I ran across the following video – and as huge baseball fan, I had to post it here.

Larry King and Sports Illustrated writer Tom Verducci debated the topic of allowing performance-enhancing drugs in baseball. Amazingly, King is all for the use of PEDs, suggesting if you legalize them in sports, then it’s somehow a level playing field and suggested it would allow those who want to damage their bodies to do so freely.

What kind of a half-cocked argument is that. What about the players who want to depend on their natural abilities and hard work, without the risk of long-term damage to their bodies?

Thankfully Tom Verducci states he doesn’t want to see success in sports based on who has the best chemist on staff. And he’s right!!

PEDs have damaged baseball and other sports. Major League Baseball looked the other way while a group of cheating players assaulted the record book. Why? – because the assault put bodies in the seats and more viewers in front of TVs.

Hank Aaron is STILL the all-time leader in home runs and Roger Maris STILL holds the single-season mark.

Of course, the subject of PEDs is not really so off-topic for the blog, as we’ve seen reports about their use in greyhound racing and horse racing.


PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Miss South Carolina and Miss SC Teen receive fur coats as gifts

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One of the steps forward we’ve made as a society of late is the consensus we’ve come to that wearing fur is unacceptable. With all of the wearable products on the market that are equal to and even better than fur, we all know that it is only cruel to wear fur.

Apparently, the folks who set up a news conference for the newly crowned Miss South Carolina and Miss South Carolina Teen have not researched where fur comes from. The two women received fur coats at the news conference held Sunday.

GoUpState.com reported the fur coats were presented from the South Carolina Trappers Association.

Fur coats from a trappers association, in 2013? Really? Someone decided this was a good idea? How is that possible?

We need to move forward in a way that bans products made of fur and we need to see bans on leg-hold traps. We should not be moving backward.


PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

A pretty good set of theories on why your hyper dog is hyper

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This video offers some sound theories on why your dog might be as hyper as he or she is.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Video: Important studies on canine cognition

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Studies have been going on for years at Duke University – in researching dog cognition.

Our pets are connected to us a special level and animals such as dogs and cats do truly possess self-awareness and individual states of consciousness.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Video: Three chihuahuas abandoned and then rescued from LA parking lot

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Hope For Paws rescued three abandoned chihuahuas from a parking lot in Los Angeles.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Two articles – two peculiar statements – on dog racing and puppy sales

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Regular visitors to the Pack Mentality Blog know the disdain I have for greyhound racing. So when I read articles about the horrible industry and I see wacky comments from supporters of dog racing, it really gives me the finger-nails-on-the-chalkboard feeling.

I’ve read a couple of articles over the last week about a report sponsored by the Florida state legislature, a report that called dog racing a dying industry. The Florida Times-Union story from July 6 notes even those operating tracks in the state want out. But a lobbyist is quoted as claiming one problem is the condition of the racetracks – and the report claimed he said going to the track was unpleasant for visitors.

My response is this – Tell it to the greyhounds. It’s more than unpleasant every day for them. But I guess that doesn’t matter for some people.

Then we have a quote from Philadelphia Eagles running back Bryce Brown’s attorney, after his previously seized dog and her pups were returned to him. Authorities took a number of dogs from a property where the owner was charged with mistreating animals and operating a dog-breeding operation without a license.

In a Leader Telegram story from June 28, Brown’s attorney made a claim about the “value of puppies” decreasing the older they get.

“It’s a lot easier to sell 8-week-old puppies than it is to sell eight-month-old puppies.”

The fact is – puppies should not be sold at 8 weeks old. Puppies should remain with their mom and siblings for at least 12 weeks. They learn important social skills over this span. And of course the real “value” of dogs has nothing to do with sale prices.


PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

How does an anti-dog fighting bill stall in the US House?

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The current Farm Bill contains a provision to criminalize attending an animal-fighting event – at the federal level. And a StarGazette.com article notes:

Spectators would face additional charges if they brought a minor to witness the fight.

How both of these activities are not already federal crimes – serious federal crimes – is beyond unbelievable. But the article also reminds readers that last year’s Animal Fighting Spectator Prohibition Act somehow stalled in the US House.

It’s good that the Farm Bill contains the provisions. But on the down side, the penalties are way too soft. Attending an animal fight could lead to a year in prison and a fine. Bringing a minor to a animal fight could lead to three years in prison. In both cases, the offenders will most likely spend far less time behind bars.

But overall, how is it that there is a debate going on about punishing people who take part in animal-fighting rings and how is it that politicians are dragging their feet on punishing people who bring kids to dog fights?


PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Another very weak sentence handed down for severe animal cruelty

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A man who pleaded guilty last month to felony dog fighting charges in Alabama will serve only nine months jail and then a year of house arrest. And four years probation was tacked on, along with 100 hours of community service at an animal shelter.

To add insult to injury for the dogs he severely abused, the court will allow him to possess animals again after his probation period.

So only nine months of real punishment and then he can go right back to abusing dogs again. I cannot fathom why our criminal justice system continues to hand out these slap-on-the-wrist sentences and then agrees to put more animals at risk, after a very short period of time.

It is time to impose automatic, lifetime bans on animal abusers.


PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

ASPCA stepping up movement to shut down puppy mills – with photos

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The ASPCA is posting photos of the horrible conditions seen at puppy mills – taken by taken by the U.S. Department of Agriculture of the last several years.

You can view the images on the ASPCA NoPetStorePuppies website.

The Washington Post ran a story recently concerning the campaign and in it quoted a lobbyist for the Missouri Federation of Animal Owners.

“Much of the information is old, and it’s a publicity stunt for the ASPCA … and other radical animal rights groups to garner money from the unknowing public.”

That’s an odd slant, given that the “unknowing public” still buys puppies online and from stores. It is the members of knowing public who are going to shelters and rescue groups to adopt new family members.


PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic