Factory farming industry wants to hide acts of cruelty and block any protections for the animals

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Ag-gag laws: The trend is spreading – in an attempt to cover up the cruel practices within the factory-farming industry. I found one editorial on the Global Grind website from a writer who seems to incorrectly believe these laws will protect animals. Thankfully, a number of comments below the piece might educate her.

These “ag-gag” laws are clearly designed to hind acts of animal cruelty. This industry does not want its practices shown to the public – and to date, inspections by government agencies have apparently been conducted with blindfolds.

We must have stronger regulations and until then, the only way the public and the animals can be protected is through hidden-camera video. The industry knows this.

ABC News reported March 15 on six more states looking to close the curtain on animal suffering.

Indiana state Sen. Travis Holdman was quoted in the article. He wants to protect the industry, but his comment is telling.

“We don’t need a vigilante group out there with cameras and video cameras taking pictures of things that we just don’t like.”

So is he going to make sure these acts of cruelty that “we just don’t like” are exposed and offenders punished? Probably not. So his comment rings hollow. The six states where elected officials want to hide and protect acts of animal cruelty are – Nebraska, Indiana, Arkansas, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and California.

Continue reading Factory farming industry wants to hide acts of cruelty and block any protections for the animals →

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Vast majority of Americans oppose cosmetic testing on animals

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Now that the European Union has banned cosmetic products tested on animals, the push is underway to impose the same ban in the United States. A new poll by Lake Research Partners shows 67 percent of Americans opposed testing cosmetics on animals.

That’s an important result, but even still, I wonder what the other 33 percent are thinking? And 72 percent of women oppose this practice. So some men skewed the poll numbers down. What’s up with that?

And get this – the PRWeb article on this topic notes the “Food and Drug Administration does not require animal testing to prove the safety of cosmetics and personal care products . . .” So this isn’t even something the industry is forced to do.

This one should be easy. The federal government could ban this torture today.



PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Sears completely drops fur from its lineup

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More stores need to do what Sears just did. The retailer has completely dropped products made from real fur from its product line. The company had previously dropped fur from its stores and on Sears.com, but this latest news means the specific section known as Marketplace at Sears.com will be fur-free.

I received the news today from the Humane Society of the United States, along with a link to Wane Pacelle’s blog post about the announcement.

Pacelle notes some products labeled as “faux fur” have been found to have raccoon dog fur in them. As I’ve noted before, we no longer need to wear fur. There so many products available that either look like fur or function like fur. Don’t let anyone tell you this isn’t true.

A number of other retailers of late have stopped carrying fur or at least have stopped selling products made from raccoon dog fur.

How any other retailers could still sell real fur – in 2013 – is beyond comprehension. The people who run these companies are either ignorant or cold-hearted.


Technology being used to stop poachers

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Wildlife poachers – particularly those who are killing endangered species – are some of the most evil and greed-filled people on the planet. Without an increased level of intervention, a number of incredible animal species will wiped off the face of the Earth.

But thankfully, modern technology is now being used to fight poaching – like drones, hidden cameras and GPS devices.

The fantastic Mother Nature Network reviews the high-tech tools.


Discovery Channel video shows dark side of sled-dog racing

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Even the people interviewed in this video who support the Iditarod Sled Dog Race are admitting its bad news for the dogs.

A vet talks about the routine skeletal, muscle and joint injuries and a segment of the footage shows the inhumane housing used for the dogs. And a park official show how little she really knows about dogs.

But the single most incredible quote from the video comes from the Director of Public Relations for the Iditarod. He says -

There’s a thing called life and death. And it just happens.

And then he claims the dogs “have one of the most caring safety nets he’s ever seen in his life.” He obviously is sheltered in racing and hasn’t witnessed much in the outside world.

Conveniently, complete records are not kept, most notably on deaths in training or the deaths that occur after races, as noted by the Discovery Channel report. Like greyhound racing, the numbers are hidden back in the shadows. After all, it is the IdiocyRod.

And note that around the 4:10 mark in the video, you see a dog with a missing ear.

Members of Federal Wildlife Services routinely engaged in acts of animal cruelty

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A Fox News story published Tuesday reports on routine acts of animal cruelty, by individuals working in the USDA’s Wildlife Services department. One person quoted in the article explains it is part of the job to have dogs attack wolves held in leg-hold traps.

Thankfully, two US Congressman – Rep. John Campbell (R-Calif.) and Rep. Peter Defazio (D-Ore.) are speaking out against these acts of torture to animals.

Agriculture Secretary Thomas Vilsack was quoted in response to the reports:

USDA does not condone any form of animal cruelty and holds all employees responsible for adhering to Departmental and Agency standards and directives.

If Vilsack is true to his words, he will immediately ban the use of leg-hold traps and of course ban the use of dogs to attack wolves. And he should realize that there is a balance of nature to be addressed and killing off segments of the chain of life is no way to oversee ecosystems.

Disgusting article on Iditarod race

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A completely disgusting article is up on the NBC Sports website, reporting on the so-called ‘winner’ of the IdiocyRod Sled Dog Race, as the oldest person to ride in the back of the sled that crossed the finish line first in the animal-cruelty competition.

The sled-rider is 53 years old and was quoted as saying, “This is for all of the gentlemen of a certain age.” The story reported on his race time, when all he did was ride in the back of the sled. The lead paragraph claimed HE won the “grueling test of endurance.”

In reality, it was the dogs who suffered, while all he did was ride along – yes – in the cold weather. If he had pulled the sled or walked the 1,000 miles, that would be an achievement. The article went on to claim his “victory came after a dueling sprint” with another sled-rider. NO – the dogs sprinted.

And without noting the dogs that have died over the years in this event and the thousands that have reportedly been killed through the racer-selection process, the article gets mushy about how the riders hugged the dogs at the finish line.

The article was so full of crap, it nearly gummed up my desktop computer. I realize the writers were given an assignment to cover it, but they did not have to become race promoters. The best phrase I can come up with is – disgusting.

The reporting is beyond irresponsible and NBC Sports should issue an apology for posting the article on its website. I hope they don’t decide to start covering dog fights.


Two manta ray and five shark species receive international protection

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The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) voted in protections for two species of manta rays and five species of sharks. Thankfully, we are seeing some steps taken to protect endangered species. We need to see more.

The press release from WildAid:

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BANGKOK, THAILAND (March 11, 2013) – Delegates to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) have taken the significant step of voting to protect two manta ray and five shark species at the 16th Conference of the Parties. Sharks have been heavily targeted for their fins and mantas for their gill rakers, despite the species’ proven value to ocean ecosystem health and to global ecotourism.

Species need a 2/3 vote in favor among member countries in order to be listed on the Appendices of CITES, the only international treaty empowered to designate which species are in sufficient danger of extinction to warrant protection from trade. The following shark and ray species were proposed and voted for inclusion in Appendix II yesterday at the meeting in Bangkok, Thailand:

Continue reading Two manta ray and five shark species receive international protection →

Cosmetic animal-testing ban goes into effect in European Union

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The ban on the sale of cosmetics that have been tested on animals is now the law of the land in the European Union. This ban should be imposed everywhere.

What some laboratories are doing to animals is criminal. If someone in the United States, for example, was caught pouring burning chemicals into the eyes of bunnies, they would be jailed for animal cruelty. (Okay the sentence would be light, but at least it’s against the law.)

But somehow, these repetitive acts of cruelty – in so many cases where the results are already well known or where alternative, technology-based test can be performed – are deemed legal.


Living with Wolves special airs on TV tonight – and online

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An investigative report about wolves – within Link TV’s Earth Focus series – will air tonight on the network and online at www.linktv.org/earthfocus. The Link TV premier is set for 9:30 p.m. PT (March 11) – or 12:30 a.m. ET. And it will run again at 9 p.m. ET Thursday (March 14).
I am not sure of the direction of the show, as I have not seen it. But hopefully we’ll see information that will educate the viewing audience to the need for protections for these great animals.

The press release from LINK TV:

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The future of the gray wolf is uncertain. The polarized debate over killing wolves and the search for a middle ground is the subject of a new investigative TV special Shades of Gray: Living with Wolves, produced by Link TV’s environmental news magazine Earth Focus.

Earth Focus travels to Montana and Wyoming to gauge the views of ranchers, hunters, scientists, taxidermists, conservationists and a former Governor of Montana. It explores the complex middle ground of hard truths and innovative solutions in the polarized battle over the place of wolves in the American West. The program is produced by Earth Focus, in collaboration with the Ecologist Film Unit in the UK.

Gray wolves once ranged across North America. But by the 1930s, they were nearly extinct — trapped, poisoned and hunted by ranchers, farmers and government agents. With protection under the 1973 Endangered Species Act, the wolf population rebounded. But when wolves lost federal protection in 2011 and wolf management became an issue for the states to decide, hunting was again permitted in many areas. Recently trapping and snaring were also allowed in some states, leading many to question the fate of this once endangered species.

Continue reading Living with Wolves special airs on TV tonight – and online →