Written by PETA
I'd be willing to bet my lucky four-leaf clover that carrying a rabbit's foot only brings nightmares of screaming cottontails. On the other hand, I do believe the folks who say that these delightful little three-legged pigs will bring good luck to giftees. I mean, just look at them:
I get giddy when I imagine the good fortune that I'll receive after I toss a handful of salt from my lucky piggy salt shaker over my shoulder. I'll have to wait until my birthday rolls around in June to score my own set (hint, hint), but you can receive yours much sooner just by telling us about a superstition that you just can't shake. Don't have one? Make one up. I did: Whenever Tim and I are out and about and a streetlight burns out over our heads, I plant one on his kisser. I know it's corny, but we don't see many shooting stars here in the city.
You know you want 'em, so post a comment that gets us feeling superstitious and you might win. We've got one set to give away to the person who posts the most creative entry.
Written by Karin Bennett
Last night's crowning of the Best in Show at the Westminster Dog Show was bested by two protesters who informed the crowd that every time a dog is purchased from a breeder, another dog dies in an animal shelter:
The 15,000 audience members collectively gasped at the shock of the unexpected interruption, but the facts are much more startling: People who are deliberately breeding animals even when U.S. animal shelters must put 3 to 4 million dogs and cats to death every year are callous, profit-hungry, cruel shoo-ins for worst in show.
Written by Logan Scherer
The following is a guest post from PETA Prime's Scott VanValkenburg.
Did you know that February 23 is Spay Day? Leading up to this very important "holiday," PETA Files readers are going to be treated to a series of posts that are aimed at highlighting the importance of making sure that animal companions are spayed or neutered.
In my time at PETA headquarters, I can honestly say that nothing has changed the situation more for dogs and cats in the border region between North Carolina and Virginia than have PETA's mobile clinics. The original "Spay and Neuter Immediately, Please!" (SNIP) clinic has been joined by the Animal Birth Control DogDoc clinic. Last year was a banner year for the struggle to end companion animal overpopulation in the poor urban and rural communities served by PETA's clinics.
In 2009, our mobile clinics performed 8,677 spay or neuter surgeries, preventing the birth of as many as 62,472 kittens and 55,536 pups in the next year alone. That's easily equal to the local animal shelter intake for one year! The local shelters (where they exist in these areas) are bursting at the seams—so no adoption program can possibly solve the problem—and exporting pups and kittens to shelters in areas with a lower population also doesn't address the root of the issue.
PETA not only drives the clinics to towns where there are no veterinary services at all (let alone a low-cost clinic) but also uses creative grassroots work to reach people. Volunteers from PETA's Community Animal Project (CAP) march in the "Peanut Parade" (this is the South, after all) and go door to door trying to help "backyard" dogs. Many of the animals who receive free doghouses from PETA are also spayed or neutered by SNIP. PETA now has a full-time employee in North Carolina who drives a small van to remote residences (many on roads with no street signs) to pick up dogs and cats to take to the clinics. Last year, 562 animals got a free round-trip ride to the clinics. It was definitely the first ride that many of these animals had ever had!
PETA has also worked to have legislation passed that promotes spay and neuter surgeries.
PETA's clinics are among the few that provide "early" spaying and neutering, which not only prevents accidental litters and helps the shelters we serve with pre-adoption sterilization but also helps the individual animals avoid many health problems. Last year, 2,917 puppies and kittens were "snipped" so that they'll never have a litter! Our clinics also helped the most abused breed of dog by providing 210 low-cost or free surgeries to pit bulls. And feral cat caretakers brought in 735 felines, moving us closer to the day when there are no outdoor cats.
One local animal shelter reported that it received 100 fewer pups last year than it did in 2008, attributing the decrease almost entirely to PETA's mobile clinic services. The flood of dogs and cats needing homes continues, but PETA's local and national programs are helping to stem the tide. Have you waded into this issue?
Written by Scott VanValkenburg
It's a fact: the Westminster Dog Show aggravates the already dire animal overpopulation crisis and contributes to the deaths of homeless animals by encouraging people to buy purebred dogs from breeders and pet stores. That's why PETA's Grim Reaper showed up on Monday to usher in the dark event:
This year, dedicated PETA supporters gathered outside the dog show to tell passersby that Madison Square Garden should be the final resting place for Westminster—and that keeping shelter dogs out of early graves is as easy as choosing to adopt from a worthy rescue group rather than buying from a breeder.
Thanks to all the bad habits immigrating from north of the border, the childhood obesity epidemic in Mexico is growing quickly, and school lunches loaded with fattening meat and dairy products are largely to blame. Luckily, we know just how to help Mexican schools tackle this hefty issue: Meat-Free Mondays.
We sent a letter to Mexico's secretary of education, Alonso Lujambio Irazábal, asking that the government adopt Meat-Free Mondays in all public schools. Meat-eaters are nine times more likely to be obese than vegetarians are, and researchers have found that children as young as 3 years old can already begin to show signs of coronary heart disease. Vegan meals don't have any heart-clogging cholesterol and are some of the healthiest options for any cafeteria lunch line.
While we wait to hear back from Mexican officials, it's easy to get your local schools to adopt Meat-Free Mondays. To participate, schools simply need to commit to cutting out meat once a week. In return for their commitment, we'll honor any schools that sign up with a launch party, free materials, and a certificate.
Fit students, an exciting party, and delicious, healthy food—what more could a school ask for?
Written by Liz Graffeo
Sometimes all you need is a sign—and with our new McCruelty Sign Generator, you can create one for McDonald's McCruelty. Design your own slogan and expose the painful slaughter behind the "billions and billions" of chickens served. Check out a few signs that the bloggers have already generated:
We can't wait to see your signs!
Written by Logan Scherer
What a week it's been—I never dreamed I'd see so many flakes in one place (and I'm not talking about Snowmagolypse)!
During PETA's "Who Wore It Worst?" competition, a fur-addicted mother squared off with her daughter. Devilishly self-centered divas duked it out. Pelt-wearing wannabes went toe-to-toe. And two famous wives, each married to cruelty to animals, united on one Web page in a furocious smackdown.
You voted, and now we've chosen a winner. But before we reveal who was crowned "Fur Hag 2010," we'd like to hear your predictions. Share them below.
Written by Karin Bennett
Baby, it's cold outside,And—wow!—the snow's piled high,But these sexy celebrity ads Will make it very, very warm inside!
After you take a few moments to cool down, tell us which ad you think is the hottest.
We've already got crustacean cheer up in here—now it's time to send it to the Kiwis. The Auckland Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) and SAFE have shut down Catcha Cray game machines in three pubs in New Zealand's largest city! The organizations also plan to take legal action to get the machines banned in all the bars in Auckland and its surrounding area.
Like Lobster Zone machines in American bars and restaurants, the Catcha Cray allows patrons use a metal claw to try to catch crayfish in a crowded tank. "These machines may 'catch' them 30 times before they're finally dragged out of the machine—that's causing them considerable stress," says Mandy Carter, a campaign officer for SAFE. She adds, "Public support has been overwhelming, and we have been extremely heartened by the comments of support and encouragement being sent by many New Zealanders." Americans, too, are collectively outraged to learn about this abuse disguised as a "game," and thanks to the outcry, Lobster Zone games have been pulled from establishments across the U.S.
Help us continue to stop the cruelty by urging another lobster-tormenting Illinois bar to abandon the violent machines.
We were inundated with precious pics of your too-cute-for-140-characters animal companions in our Valentine's Day Twitter contest, and now we're featuring the winners in four V-Day e-cards:
At the top left, meet Meeme and Mochi, who may have been watching too much Twilight before their picture was taken. The cutie in the top right is Fifi and in the bottom left is Cricket, the eye patch–sporting dog who was rescued from a trash bin. Last but not least, meet Lucia and James, who apparently can't get enough of each other.
Choose your favorite card and send it to your valentine with a personalized message. Oh, and not to worry—you're not limited to 140 characters!
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
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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.