Thursday, May 28, 2009

SPCA Employee Indicted for Animal Cruelty

From the Plano Courier Star Newspaper...

An animal protection clinic supervisor was indicted for cruelty to animals after police found a 5-month-old puppy left for dead inside the employee’s flooded apartment with no electricity.

The German Shepherd mix, Bruce, was found by police March 24. The dog was secured inside a crate located in a dark laundry room surrounded by feces.

Alicia Marie Martin, 23, was arrested for cruelty to animals April 17. She posted a $1,500 bond on May 5 and was placed in Frisco police custody for outstanding traffic citations, according to jail records.

According to court records, police described the odor inside the residence as "overwhelming.”

“It’s a horrific scene because we know what the animals go through to get to this point,” said Jamey Cantrell, Animal Services manager. “It’s something you don’t want anything or anyone to go through. He was left to die.”An animal services vet ruled that Bruce’s cause of death was starvation. Cantrell said the dog was left inside the crate without food or water for about two weeks.

Read the full story at:
http://www.scntx.com/articles/2009/05/27/plano_star-courier/news/710.txt


My friend and fellow rescuer, Barb McGrady with SPA Ohio, says it best in the following statement:

"A reminder that people might appear to be compassionate and kind-hearted... but the truth is anything but..."

My comment...

This disgusting truth happens way too often in shelters and with shelter staff who have animals in their care... and, unfortunately, these people are all PAID for their time and services. What's even more pathetic is they're paid with OUR tax dollars causing two major issues ... the cruel, inhumane suffering and death of a helpless animal AND a great deal of wasted tax money that was paid out in salaries.

I've never been sure what our state (Ohio), county, and city requirements are for hiring some of these people as it would seem that most of these employment candidates come directly from dysfunctional backgrounds, have absolutely NO experience with animals, and certainly show no signs of "common sense" whatsoever... yet they're the ones who seem to get hired. Hmm... makes you wonder, doesn't it?

Now, please don't get me wrong here, folks. We also have a lot of GOOD people who are giving 200% and definitely earning their salaries as ACO's, shelter directors, and shelter staff. We also have numerous volunteers who don't get a dime for their hard work and dedication to the animals. These people are to be commended for their selfless acts of kindness and humane treatment for our discarded, homeless pets.

I guess my question is simply this: What idiot hired this irresponsible SPCA employee and paid her a salary coming from hard earned "tax dollars?"

Thursday, May 21, 2009

What’s Next for Michael Vick?

What’s Next for Michael Vick? - Wayne Pacelle: A Humane Nation

Personally, I'd like to see Michael Vick spend a whole lot more time behind bars for his horrific acts. However, I guess some people do "Live and Learn"... and hopefully that will be the case with this guy.

Yes, he could become a strong voice against dog fighting and reach young men in urban communities telling his own story of what dog fighting and animal cruelty has cost him... the loss of a great career in pro football, lots of money for ad endorsements, not to mention his FREEDOM after being convicted. However, I certainly hope all of this will be a non paid, volunteer position.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

What Happens to Unclaimed Dogs at Some Shelters

Warning: Clicking on the link below will be a heart wrenching experience. However, I feel it's important that people know what happens to unclaimed dogs at some shelters. This, of course, is also the fate of many owner turn-ins.

The dog profiled in the slideshow met a more "humane" end than the many thousands who die in gas chambers.

http://www.spotsociety.org/fatedog.html

Who's Who in Animal Rescue

By Barbara McGrady
Society for the Protection of Animals (
S.P.A. Ohio)

There are hundreds of humane societies across the U.S. and they have no connection with each other. Some are no kill organizations, some aren't. Some are non-profit, 501(c)3 organizations, others are not. Some humane societies are actually part of their county's paid employees, but most humane societies are locally formed, independent organizations. Each organization sets up its own rules and guidelines.

One of the biggest misconceptions is that local humane societies are branches of the Humane Society of the United States. THIS IS NOT TRUE.

There is an SPCA (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals International) and an ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals). There is not a national SPCA organization, although there are lots of independent local SPCA's across the U.S.

Jennifer McKim, an SPCA International representative, clarifies by stating, "Every SPCA throughout the world is individually operated and not associated with one another. Although we share a common name, there is not an organization that oversees all SPCA’s. Each one of us have our own programs that focus to help animals on a different level. SPCA International is one of the only organizations that help shelters and animals worldwide."

In other words, local SPCA's have nothing to do with SPCA International or with each other. They were all independently formed. Some are kill, some are no kill. They have local board members with individual ideas and concepts concerning animal rescue. They may have eight members, or eight hundred members.

When moving to a new location don't assume that just because the humane society in the city from which you're moving was a wonderful facility that the humane society (or any other rescue organization) in the city you are moving to will be the same.

Not one SPCA in the United States is above any other SPCA regardless of what their name might imply. For instance, NEVADA SPCA is not in charge of other SPCA's in Nevada. Rather, they simply selected Nevada SPCA for their name.

Don't be afraid to ask animal rescue organizations specific questions about their shelter's policies, and if, in fact, they even have a shelter. It is becoming more and more common for groups to house animals in foster homes until adopted.

The bottom line is this... there are incredible rescues and there are rescues that should not be allowed to advertise as such. You can visit a specific organization's web page and think that you are sending an animal to the best place this side of heaven when in reality the animal might be chained to a dog house and forced to live in filth.

When you donate to a rescue organization make certain that their ethics are agreeable with yours.

Never assume. Always investigate. Ask questions.

Elite Animals of West Hollywood Meet with Animal Protection Movement Leaders at City Hall

Companion Animal Protection Society Along with Animal Activists Believe that Elite Animals is Selling Pet Factory Animals and Defrauding Consumers

(Los Angeles, CA) – On Tuesday May 12, 2009 there was a meeting between Isabella Stroshnoy, the owner of Elite Animals and members of the animal protection movement at West Hollywood's City Hall. The Companion Animal Protection Society (CAPS) presented evidence of a puppy mill in Minnesota that supplies Elite Animals. The organizations that participated were CAPS, The Animal Legal Defense Fund, IDA, Best Friends Animal Society, The Amanda Foundation and Strangest Angels Rescue.

The evidence presented was from a CAPS investigation of a particularly cruel puppy mill in Minnesota — a puppy factory that Elite Animals admits it purchases dogs from. The evidence included graphic photographs of dogs suffering in enclosures filled with urine and feces, subject to rusted wire flooring, injured with wounds and infections. The dogs had attempted to chew their way out of the wooden whelping boxes. Many of the dogs were exposed to the elements and water containers had a thick layer of algae.

In addition to gruesome photographs from the mill, evidence of repeated incidents of non-compliance from USDA inspection reports were presented. Also disclosed were reports gathered by Pet Shop Puppies that were linked exclusively to the mill that supplies Elite Animals. The consumer reports regarding dogs from the mill in Minnesota stated dogs had congenital malformations, severe illnesses and some of the cases claimed that several dogs were so sick they had to be euthanized.

Elite Animals is violating a federal law from the Farm Bill which was passed in 2008. This law forbids the importation of live dogs into the United States from overseas for resale if the dogs are under the age of six months. Elite Animals has repeatedly offered to sell eight week-old puppies imported from Russia to CAPS undercover investigators posing as customers. Elite Animals told CAPS investigators that the dogs they sell in the store were "raised in a house" and "not from a puppy mill."

A verbal agreement was reached with Elite Animals that they would cease buying dogs while they considered the idea of converting to a humane business model. Elite Animals has agreed to provide CAPS and the Animal Legal Defense Fund with the list of breeders supplying the store for the ongoing investigation. This information should have been posted on the outside of the enclosures of the puppies in the store according to California law. Elite Animals was in non-compliance with the California puppy lemon law.

Teri Austin, president of the Amanda Foundation, an established rescue organization in Los Angeles, agreed to meet with owners of Elite Animals next week to discuss the possibility of an arrangement to hold adoptions at the store. Once Elite Animals has ceased importing animals or buying animals from factories, discussions might evolve on creating a humane business model for the store. The details for such an arrangement would be based on a binding legal agreement between Elite Animals and CAPS to stop buying, breeding or importing animals. Leaders of the animal protection movement as well as the dozens of activists who support the anti-puppy mill campaign are hopeful such a deal can be reached.

“It's disappointing that during this economic crisis when people are losing their jobs, their homes and being forced to give up their pets at shelters, some people are still buying $1000 dogs. People could be giving back to the community by relieving our municipal shelters and adopting a pet. This is a new era of social responsibility and these people could be giving that $1000 to a family in need. Furthermore, pet stores, whether they are bricks and mortar or Internet pet stores, lie. Behind the pretty store front and the attractive Web sites is the ugly reality that the puppy's parents are suffering in a canine supermax prison, never to get out alive, being forced to breed in a cage until death. Elite Animals is a particularly egregious case. Not only are they supplied by one of the worst puppy mills in the U.S., they are breaking a federal law by importing and selling underage puppies from Russia. We've got millions of abandoned dogs who need families right here at home. What we need from Russia is friendship and a shared commitment to controlling nuclear weapons, not more dogs to kill in our shelters. We need dogs from Russia like we need a hole in the head." - Carole Raphaelle Davis is the author of “The Diary of Jinky, Dog of a Hollywood Wife”, reporter for American Dog Magazine and West Coast Director of the Companion Animal Protection Society.

For more information on the Companion Animal Protection Society please contact President Deborah Howard at 781-210-0938 or visit caps-web.org. For local [California] information please contact Carole Raphaelle Davis at 310-990-5758 or hollywoodjinky@gmail.com. For media inquires please contact Anny Deirmenjian at 781.721.4624.

Monday, May 11, 2009

How to Scratch Your Back

video

Licensed Dog Broker Sentenced to Only 20 Days in Prison

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact:
Anny Deirmenjian
Image Unlimited Communications
P. 781.721.4624 C. 617.851.9315
E.
anny@imageunlimited-boston.com


Notorious USDA Licensed Dog Broker Sentenced to Only 20 Days in Prison
Kathy Bauck, Owner and Operator of one of the Largest Commercial Breeding Facilities in the United States is Locked Away for Only 20 Days

(Greater Boston, MA) – Touching his face with her hands, Kathy Bauck said “Don’t be scared. The Lord let’s me see what you’re thinking…are you a CAPS investigator?” The undercover investigator from the Companion Animal Protection Society (CAPS) -- the only national nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting companion animals from cruelty and inhumane breeding practices in pet shops and puppy mills — replied, “I don’t know what you are talking about.” Bauck used her self-proclaimed Christianity for years to justify her unrelenting mistreatment of animals.

Kathy Bauck is the owner and operator of Pick of the Litter (aka Puppies on Wheels) in New York Mills, Minnesota. Her facility, one of the largest USDA licensed commercial dog breeding and brokering operations in the country, distributes thousands of sick and dying dogs to pet shops across the country and via the internet. Based on evidence from a six week undercover employment investigation by the Companion Animal Protection Society, a jury in Fergus Falls (Otter Tail County), Minnesota convicted Kathy Bauck on March 24, 2009 of four misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty and torture.

Unfortunately, on May 1, 2009, in what was a great miscarriage of justice, Judge Waldemar Senyk sentenced Bauck on just one of the counts, which he wrongly believed encompassed the other charges. Bauck received a 90-day sentence, reduced to 20 days of work release, a $500 fine, 80 hours of community service and one year of probation. Bauck’s lawyers have manipulated the judicial system by claiming the breeding animals were livestock and not companion animals, which would have required seizure of the animals under the statute. The sentence also mandates that a state humane agent can make unannounced visits to the facility, which is now owned by Bauck’s husband and daughter, although Ms. Bauck is clearly still in charge. Being on work release means that Bauck will spend nights in jail during the 20 days of her sentence yet be able to oversee kennel operations during the day, just as she did while serving an earlier sentence.

During the trial, as the CAPS investigator walked by Ms. Bauck, she said, “I forgive you.” Yet while Bauck and her attorney waited in the courtroom with the CAPS investigator and the assistant prosecutor before the jury and judge came in, Bauck cryptically said to the CAPS investigator, "It's good to see you again, Jason. I'm glad you're not dead."

At the time of the investigators employment, Ms. Bauck’s facility held 900 adult dogs and approximately 400 puppies. The undercover video shot by the CAPS investigator shows dogs that are sick, wounded and dying. This graphic video portrays emaciated dogs nursing their puppies, dogs immersed in caustic pesticides, bleach water used for wounds, and animals simply left to suffer and die. While under a cease and desist order from the State Veterinary Board for the practice of veterinary medicine (including doing C-sections on her dogs), Ms. Bauck continued to practice vet medicine, which was documented by her employees. Despite Ms. Bauck’s blatant disregard for the law, the state allowed her to plea bargain for just one charge for the practice of veterinary medicine and dropped a cruelty charge that was brought about for the killing of a puppy by bashing it against a pole. While on parole and serving work release, she continued to commit cruelty that was documented by a CAPS undercover investigator. CAPS submitted the investigator’s hidden camera footage, photographs and reports to local authorities.

CAPS has investigated more than 1,000 puppy mills – mostly USDA licensed breeders and brokers – in the United States and handles pet shop complaints from all over the U. States and Canada. Over the years the organization has received numerous complaints from consumers who purchased sick puppies that were bred or brokered by people like Bauck. Ms. Bauck has been licensed by the USDA since 1983 and despite CAPS investigations since 1997, the USDA has failed to take action. A July 2008 USDA inspection report for Bauck had no violations of the Animal Welfare Act (AWA). CAPS has been investigating the USDA’s failure to enforce the AWA since 1995 and has been lobbying members of Congress for oversight hearings regarding the USDA’s lax enforcement of the AWA. CAPS will return to the Capitol next month to meet with USDA officials and members of Congress and will use the Bauck case as its primary evidence of the USDA’s malfeasance.

Click here to view the video for the investigation report. WARNING: Some of this information is graphic.

For more information please visit http://www.caps-web.org/ or call the Companion Animal Protection Society at 781.210.0938.

###
About Companion Animal Protection Society:
Companion Animal Protection Society (CAPS) is the only national nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting companions from cruelty and inhumane breeding practices in Pet Shops and Puppy Mills. Founded in 1992, CAPS actively addresses this issue through undercover investigations, consumer education through the media, legislative involvement, puppy mill dog rescues, consumer assistance and pet shop employee relations. CAPS has gained worldwide recognition for targeting puppy mill operations and converting pet shops to humane animal adoption centers. The Companion Animal Protection Society is based in the Boston, MA area. For more information please visit
www.caps-web.org.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Live Dogs Mutilated and Abused in OSU Laboratory

From PETA Action Center...

For the past 27 years, Ohio State University (OSU) experimenter George Billman has used taxpayer dollars to cut dogs open and induce heart attacks in them. He inserts a cuff around an artery, sews the dogs back up, then forces the dogs to run on a treadmill. He then tightens the cuff, causing a coronary artery occlusion.

His conclusion—that exercise strengthens the heart—has been common knowledge for decades. Of 768 dogs used by Billman, a staggering 256 of them died—either on the operating table or in the days following the surgery—before he could even test his "hypothesis."

PETA reviewed the records for 10 dogs recently used by Billman and found evidence that federal regulations may have been violated, including failure to minimize pain, discomfort, and distress; failure to provide adequate veterinary care; and failure to euthanize animals who were in extreme distress.

PETA has filed complaints with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the National Institutes of Health calling on these agencies to investigate Billman's laboratory. We are calling on OSU to stop George Billman's invasive and unnecessary experiments on dogs.

Please contact OSU President Gordon Gee and experimenter George Billman and urge them to stop these cruel and pointless experiments on dogs.

Visit the following link to send a message to Gordon Gee and George Billman:
https://secure.peta.org/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=1920

Animal Rescue & the Brave Little Parrot

The following was written by my friend and fellow rescuer Barb McGrady of the Society for Protection of Animals (www.spaohio.org). It's beautifully accurate and precise. She also shares the profound story of The Brave Little Parrot.


By Barbara McGrady

Animal Rescue is often painfully rewarding and it takes a great amount of determination to get up every day and try to convince ourselves that, "Today, we will make a difference!"

Many of us have only had 4 or 5 hours of sleep because we were up late taking care of rescued animals who required our attention. We aren't able to take summer vacations like other "regular" people because we have too many animals to take care of who are counting on us, fundraising to do, and telephone animal emergencies to attend to.

Our bills are stacked up in a pile beside out computers because we spend so many hours fighting to save, "just one more life." We are low on money and drive old vans that need repair work done. We always make certain that the air conditioning works though so the animals can be cool when we transport them to their new homes.

Our houses aren't as clean as they use to be, but we feel compelled to continue to do what we do, setting aside everyday tasks that we'd love to tackle as soon as we save one more animal's life.

We visit deplorable dog pounds and shelters realizing that we can not save each set of eyes that reaches deep into our soul. We wonder why others don't seem to understand. We save as many lives as we are able, and cry all the way home for the ones we were forced to leave behind.

We often send up angry prayers as our pain becomes unbearable, questioning the reason there is so much needless, heartless and intentional pain and suffering on this earth, while at the same time we pray for inner strength and the ability to continue to love and trust that while we are only saving one life at a time, we are truly making a difference. Our life is a paradox.

You are all working together to form a golden chain of love. It is a thankless job, but I wanted to remind you all of WHAT A DIFFERENCE YOU ARE TRULY MAKING.

I read the following, and it reminded me of you...


The Brave Little Parrot -- A Jataka Tale

Once, long ago, the Buddha was born as a little parrot. One day a storm fell upon his forest home. Lightning flashed, thunder crashed, and a dead tree, struck by lightning, burst into flames. Sparks leapt on the wind and soon the forest was ablaze. Terrified animals ran wildly in every direction, seeking safety from the flames and smoke.

"Fire! Fire!" cried the little parrot. "To the river!" Flapping his wings, he flung himself out into the fury of the storm and, rising higher, flew towards the safety of the river. But as he flew he could see that many animals were trapped, surrounded by the flames below, with no chance of escape.

Suddenly a desperate idea, a way to save them, came to him.

He darted to the river, dipped himself in the water, and flew back over the now raging fire.

The heat rising up from the burning forest was like the heat of an oven. The thick smoke made breathing almost unbearable. A wall of flames shot up on one side, and then the other. Crackling flames leapt before him. Twisting and turning through the mad maze of fire, the little parrot flew bravely on. At last, when he was over the center of the forest, he shook his wings and released the few drops of water which still clung to his feathers. The tiny drops tumbled down like jewels into the heart of the blaze and vanished with a hissssssssss.

Then the little parrot once more flew back through the flames and smoke to the river, dipped himself in the cool water, and flew back again over the burning forest. Back and forth he flew, time and time again, from the river to the forest, from the burning forest to the river. His feathers were charred. His feet were scorched. His lungs ached. His eyes, stung by smoke, turned red as coals. His mind spun dizzily as the spinning sparks. But still the little parrot flew on.

At this time, some of the devas -- gods of a happy realm -- were floating overhead in their cloud palaces of ivory and gold. They happened to look down. And they saw the little parrot flying among the flames. They pointed at him with perfect hands. Between mouthfuls of honeyed foods they exclaimed, "Look at that foolish bird! He's trying to put out a raging forest fire with a few sprinkles of water! How absurd!" And they laughed.

But one of those gods, strangely moved, changed himself into a golden eagle and flew down, down towards the little parrot's fiery path.

The little parrot was just nearing the flames again when the great eagle with eyes like molten gold appeared at his side. "Go back, little bird!" said the eagle in a solemn and majestic voice. "Your task is hopeless! A few drops of water can't put out a forest fire! Cease now and save yourself -- before it is too late."

But the little parrot only continued to fly on through the smoke and flames. He could hear the great eagle flying above him as the heat grew fiercer, calling out, "Stop, foolish little parrot! Save yourself! Save yourself!"

"I don't need a great, shining eagle," coughed the little parrot, "to give me advice like that. My own mother, the dear bird, might have told me such things long ago. Advice! (cough, cough), I don't need advice. I just (cough), need someone to help."

And the god, who was that great eagle, seeing the little parrot flying through the flames, thought suddenly of his own privileged kind. He could see them high up above. There they were, the carefree gods, laughing and talking, while many animals cried out in pain and fear from the flames below. And he grew ashamed. Then one single desire was kindled in his heart. God though he was, he just wanted to be like that brave little parrot, and to help.

"I will help!" he exclaimed and, flushed with these new feelings, he began to weep. Stream after stream of sparkling tears poured from his eyes. Wave upon wave, they washed down like cooling rain upon the fire, upon the forest, upon the animals and upon the little parrot himself.

The flames died down and the smoke began to clear. The little parrot, washed and bright, rocketed about the sky laughing for joy. "Now that's more like it!" he exclaimed.

The eagle's tears dripped from burned branches. Smoke rose up from the scorched earth. Miraculously, where those tears glistened, new life pushed forth -- fresh shoots, stems, and leaves. Green grass pushed up from among the still glowing cinders.

Where the teardrops sparkled on the parrot's wings, new feathers now grew. Red feathers, green feathers, yellow feathers -- such bright colors! Such a handsome bird!

All the animals looked at one another in amazement. They were whole and well. Not one had been harmed. Up above in the clear blue sky they could see their brave friend, the little parrot, looping and soaring in delight. When all hope was gone, somehow he had saved them. "Hurray!" they cried. "Hurray for the brave little parrot and for the miraculous rain!"

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Who Is Your Real Friend?


This really works!!
If you don't believe it, just try this experiment.

Put your dog and your wife in the trunk of the car for an hour.
When you open the trunk, which one is really happy to see you?

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Montcalm: Still a Skunk in the Woodpile

Another update on Montcalm from Nancy Jean Rose:

I just learned that at the Montcalm meeting it was stated that Montcalm will still sell animals to MSU for experimentation.

All that has been done is that the county has eliminated the middle man (R&R Research) and taken on the role of animal pimp in its place.

I was wondering what would happen when the "founding fathers" of the county realized that they could begin making up to $400 per dog and who knows how much per cat by pimping the animals themselves. Now we see the heart of the matter--greed. Those Montcalm "founding fathers" are awful people.

You might want to circulate this information.

For previous posts regarding the Montcalm County, MI issue, please see the Animal Testing category.