Written by PETA
And the Best Civil Engineer award goes to … the beaver! Scientists recently stumbled upon the world's biggest beaver dam. Twice as long as the Hoover Dam, this whopping woodland creation can be seen from space.
Using their mad landscaping skills, several beaver families have been working on this 2,790-foot Canadian compound since 1975 (I wonder if their lodges have shag carpet). The hardest-working mammals in the construction business, beavers are a keystone species, whose dams create and maintain wetlands. Beavers are also gentle, curious, family-oriented animals who mate for life and share in child-raising duties. Did I mention that they're also fond of flute music?
Important, intriguing, and dam fine builders, beavers' biggest predators are humans who trap them for fur (fur trapping is the number one cause of death for beavers) or pick on them because they're perceived as "pests." Resolving conflicts with beavers and other wildlife is easy if you think like a beaver. Ingenuity, industriousness, good planning skills, and architectural know-how go a long way in peacefully coexisting with all our wild neighbors. So seriously, let's leave beavers alone and let them enjoy their music.
Written by Amy Skylark Elizabeth
The following post originally appeared on PETA Prime.
Recently, I ran across some really sad cases of guardians who lost their feline companions and did not know what steps to take to recover them. Here are some basic guidelines that were originally published in my book 250 Things You Can Do to Make Your Cat Adore You. These steps should also work for most other types of animal companions.
The following are the basic rules:
Somewhere between watching House of Payne reruns on TBS and holding Madea movie marathons, I totally missed this Tyler Perry news: The man loves dogs.
It seems that a dog named Aldo changed Tyler's life. As Tyler explains in this moving essay, Aldo has quickly become his "best buddy":
"I find myself not working long hours so that I can rush home to walk him and feed him. It's so crazy! Who knew that me, Mr. Commitment Phobe, could feel like this about any living creature?"
And when Tyler visited his local humane society to adopt a pal for Aldo, he went home with three!
Not only does this man have a sense of humor, he's also looking out for the millions of animals sitting in animal shelters by making sure he adopts. After you sign up for the Tyler Perry fan club, check out these great reads by PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk to find out how you can make your own furry friends a little bit happier.
Written by Paula Moore
Veteran fashionista and new vlogger Kelly Cutrone recently confessed that she kills mice who make their way inside her home because she's "not Pamela Anderson."
Sure, there's only one Pamela Anderson, but we can all work toward emulating Pam's kindness and compassion, so we dashed off a note to Kelly to let her know that humane traps are available and that we're happy to send her a supply. Mice really don't want to bother you any more than you want to interact with them, and like us, they are just trying to live their lives.
Snap traps are awful, but not quite as horrific as glue traps, which are "hell on Earth" for animals who get stuck in them, who sometimes chew their own limbs off in an attempt to escape.
After she uses nonlethal means to put mice back where they belong, perhaps the sequel to Kelly's bestselling book, If You Have to Cry, Go Outside, can be called, If You Have Mice, Take Them Outside.
Written by Jennifer O'Connor
Update: In response to the complaint filed by PETA, the USDA cited Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research for two violations of the Animal Welfare Act.
A worker at the Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research (SFBR) in San Antonio was hospitalized with cuts and scratches on Monday after he was attacked by two baboons. The primates reportedly escaped from a holding pen and jumped the guy while he was cleaning cages. (My guess is that they were looking for the keys, but that's just my personal theory.) PETA has filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) pointing out that violations of the Animal Welfare Act may have led to the attack.
This wouldn't be surprising. In 2009 and again in February 2010, the USDA cited SFBR for failing to house animals in structurally sound enclosures to prevent them from escaping and injuring themselves and others. In one incident, a monkey escaped from a cage and got outside into the freezing cold, where he suffered from hypothermia and later had to be euthanized.
As I'm sure you're aware by now, "biomedical research" is code for "animal torment." For instance, at SFBRC, female animals are impregnated and their preterm babies are cut from their bodies, killed, and dissected. Other animals are infected with hepatitis, and some are fed diets that consist of 40 percent lard in order to induce obesity and heart disease.
Sadly, the baboons' decision to visit some karmic justice on the lab worker prevented them from making a successful bid for freedom, and they were quickly returned to the cells cages. However, considering the tragic outcome of another Texas jailbreak (a chimpanzee was shot and killed in 2008 after escaping from the University of Texas Keeling Center), maybe it's a good thing that those baboons didn't get their fingers on the keys after all.
Written by Alisa Mullins
Yeah, I subscribe to Maxim because the mag always features my favorite things: gaming, Web sites, and überhot babes like Olivia Munn, whose sizzling anti-circus billboard is wowing 'em at the corner of Wilshire Boulevard and Highland Avenue in Los Angeles.
Olivia was recently crowned Number Eight in Maxim's annual list of the 100 Sexiest Women. And for those of you who forgot to TiVo her attack on the abuse of animals in circuses during G4s Attack of the Show, I thought I'd share the clip:
What's more attractive than someone who cares about animals? Um, not much, and I have it on pretty good authority that Maxim's editorial staff will back me up on this. Gorgeous PETA supporters routinely make the mag's top 100 list.
Extra, extra! Read all about this fantastic leather-free messenger bag, a newsworthy carry-almost-all and the prize in this week's "Win It" Wednesday contest, courtesy of English Retreads.
We recently spilled the beans on how and why PETA makes headlines all over the world. Now you tell us: What animal-friendly headline do you dream about reading in the news? Think big and be creative. The headline I'd like to see across the New York Times is "Federal Law Passes: Millions of Backyard Dogs Brought Indoors."
Whether you go for laughs or for tears of joy (please don't go for the jugular—no inflammatory attacks, please), the person who most bowls us over wins the bag. We've got one to give away in either black or scarlet. Are you ready for a chance to become the talk of your town? Read the fine print below, and then give us the scoop.
Written by Karin Bennett
Despite carry-on baggage fees and the ash-spewing Icelandic volcano that erupted a few weeks ago, people continue to travel the globe—and so does PETA. Our virtual plus-size "tourist" is heading to popular destinations to make folks aware of the benefits of a vegan diet. First stop: The Great Wall of China, which is reportedly crumbling because of tourist foot traffic.
The Wall is impressive, but by eating fatty meat and dairy products, tourists could be making entirely the wrong kind of impression. For anyone who would like to be light enough to go 'round the world—instead of showing up as a round spot on Google Earth—then a healthy, balanced vegan diet is just the ticket!
Written by Jeff Mackey
In yet another one of Canada's attempts to get the media hyped about its bloody seal slaughter, Fisheries Minister Gail Shea just announced an "extension" of the slaughter through the end of May after sealers bemoaned the lack of opportunities to engage in their bloody business.
The funny thing is under Canada's Marine Mammal Regulations Canadian sealers have been allowed to bludgeon or shoot hundreds of thousands of young seals to death until June 15.
Ms. Shea is a veteran when it comes to attempting to put a positive spin on this ugly massacre—she refers to seals as "market opportunities" to be "harvested," so it's little surprise that she's trying to appease sealers and the public with manufactured assistance.
As PETA Senior Vice President Dan Mathews put it, "This is just another desperate attempt to save the dying commercial seal slaughter. The politicians from all the major federal parties are so desperate for the eight seats in the House of Commons that represent sealing communities that they'll do anything to show voters that they are supporting all business endeavors—even the hideous seal slaughter—despite the fact that it costs the government millions."
Of course, it's easy enough to ignore the political maneuvering by turning your back on travel and spreading the word far and wide.
Written by Jennifer O'Connor
Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack today announced new regulations that are meant to curb the number of meat-eaters who are rushed to hospitals after being sickened by life-threatening foodborne illnesses. It's believed that the "improvements" will keep 39,000 Americans from being infected with campylobacter and 26,000 from being sickened by salmonella-tainted chicken and turkey flesh—a small reduction from the 3 to 4 million Americans who contract these diseases every year.
In other words, the "improvements" promise little more than a drop in a KFC bucket.
What will a meat-eater's chances of getting sick from salmonella or campylobacter be under the new regulations? Considering that the new standards allow for 7.5 percent of chicken corpses at a plant to test positive for salmonella—and that of those corpses, 10 percent can be "highly contaminated" and 46 percent can have "low levels" of contamination—we'd say still pretty good, er, bad.
In a recent analysis, Consumer Reports found that among "fresh" whole chickens bought in 22 states, two-thirds harbored salmonella and/or campylobacter.
Folks, these new "safeguards" won't do squawk squat to keep consumers safe from salmonella and campylobacter. The simple fact is that eating chickens and turkeys will sicken just about every meat-eater sooner or later. Those who care about animal welfare become sickened when they learn about the abuse of billions of birds on factory farms and in slaughterhouses. Those who don't know about this abuse will likely find themselves locked in the loo at some point, sickened by salmonella and/or campylobacter—or worse, they'll find themselves in emergency rooms thanks to heart attacks, strokes, or other conditions that are linked to meat consumption.
All the more reason to urge everyone you know to say, "Bye bye, birdies! Hello, Gardein!"
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.