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.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

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.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

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.
PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

NC legislature set to reintroduce anti-puppy mill bill

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The North Carolina General Assembly will reportedly debate another anti-puppy mill bill this session. The last two attempts in 2013 and 2014 were turned back by the NC Senate, after the bills cleared the House.

Governor Pat McCrory and his wife are in full support of breeding legislation. He commented on the issue in his recent State of the State address, stating “We have to protect our pets from abuse in puppy mills. I’m embarrassed that North Carolina is not giving basic good and water and shelter to our puppies.”

It is highly embarrassing that my home state still does not have protections in place for puppy mill dogs.

Rep. Jason Saine (R-Lincoln) sponsored the two most recent bills and WRAL out of Raleigh, NC is reporting he will try again.

The article paints a somewhat positive picture, including a quote from Kim Alboum, state director for the Humane Society of the United States:
“We have just an enormous amount of support from House Republicans. We’ve got a significant amount of support in the Senate, and I think that maybe this is the year that we’re going to come together and pass this bill.”

WRAL rightfully reminded readers recently that the No. 1 opponent of anti-puppy mill legislation is the American Kennel Club.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Time Warner Cable joins the ranks of companies who are clueless to the puppy mill issue

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Leading up to Super Bowl Sunday, it was Go Daddy and its advertising firm that produced a commercial that only proved both companies don’t know how to use the Internet or don’t really pay attention to the news.

The promotion of puppy mills was either clueless or just plain stupid.

Now Time Warner Cable, a company that supplies Internet and cable services to its customers is showing the world that none of the higher-ups at its offices keep up with current events. And they have free Internet.

In addition, those within the advertising firms they work with apparently don’t engage in any research into the topics they highlight in their ads.

The Time Warner Cable commercial in question highlights a mom and her daughter, who wishes for a new puppy. At the end of the ad, the mom asks where the nearest pet store is – of course where she can buy a puppy.

It would have been so easy and reasonable to change the scene to have the mom ask about the location of the nearest animal shelter. Do the ad reps not meet with company officials to present ad ideas? Is brainstorming ideas no longer a part of this process?

Do decision-makers discuss the ads beforehand, to maybe head off any issues or controversies that might crop up? Did anyone at Time Warner not see the backlash against Go Daddy?

We’re trying to get the message out to people that buying a puppy or kitten from a store or online are two of the worst ways to find a new pet. So these two companies over the last few weeks have picked out two terrible things to promote in their ads. And the red flags for both topics were easy to find – on the Internet, which both Time Warner and Go Daddy should be experts at using.

How is this possible? Try searching the phrases – puppy mills, risks of buying puppies from stores or anything similar.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Quote of the Week: Topic – Foie Gras

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California attorney general Kamala D. Harris has announced she will appeal the horrible recent court ruling that overturned a ban on foie gras. The recent ruling has handed down by a federal judge who apparently has little to no understanding whatsoever of how the birds suffer when force fed with tubes.

So Harris gets a Pack of Compassion Award for working to overturn the federal judge’s poor judgement. Animal cruelty on this level should be illegal, especially when it comes to the production of a delicacy, one that people can certainly do without and end the needless suffering for one more group of animals.

This one is just beyond the pale. Come on. We can draw the line somewhere.

Mercy for Animals founder Nathan Runkle was quoted in a statement –

“In a civilized society, it is our moral obligation to protect all animals, including ducks and other farmed animals, from needless cruelty and violence.”

That statement earns a Quote of Week honor.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Wacky Mentality court ruling of the month so far – High-Fence Hunting

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Two of the three judges on the Indiana Court of Appeals showed a complete disregard for animal suffering when they ruled in favor if caged hunting. It’s called “high-fence deer hunting” in an Indy Star article from February 3.

The Department of Natural Resources had banned the practice, but the ruling overturned the ban and opened up more deer to be shot by hunters who pay big money to hunt farm-raised deer inside fenced enclosures.

In other words, it’s a system where rich, really lazy guys briefly get off their asses to hunt down deer who are trapped and have no means to escape. There’s more actual hunting involved when people go to the grocery store.

It’s for people who are really bad at hunting. It’s like friends gathering together for a fishing trip and when they arrive they just stand on the shore of the lake while boats pull up and hand them a rod and reel with a fish already hooked on it.

They go back home and tell their wives about how tough it was, after sending out photos on Facebook.

Thankfully, the Indy Star reports Senator Pete Miller (R-Avon) has introduced Senate Bill 442, which would ban high-fence hunting.

The Indy Star ran a series of articles last year about the practice of canned hunting, noting it’s all about profit and the antlers. It’s not sporting and it’s not about food. It’s just so a few people can pay big money to take home some huge antlers.

Let’s hope Miller’s bill passes very soon.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic