Written by PETA
Crazy cat ladies of America, you have some explaining to do. According to a recent Associated Press poll, 55 percent of cat guardians are in favor of declawing, while only 8 percent of dog fanciers agree with debarking, or surgically removing dogs' vocal chords.
I can only hope that most of the people who voted for declawing don't know exactly what it is. Declawing is like taking a hatchet to a hangnail—literally. It involves 10 separate, painful surgeries, severing not just the nails but the whole joint, including the bones, ligaments, and tendons.
Complications of declawing include chronic pain, nerve damage, hemorrhaging, bone chips, recurrent infections, and abnormal regrowth of the nail inside the paw. Oh, and let's not forget those other two common "complications"—biting and spraying. I've had two declawed cats in my life (both were already declawed when they came to me), and one was a biter and the other is a sprayer. Think snagged furniture is the worst of your problems? Try walking into a house that reeks of cat urine. It takes destruction of property to a whole new level.
Declawed Teddy: He's so gorgeous, I can forgive him for spraying on anything in a box or plastic bag.
Not all declawed cats become biters and sprayers, of course, but you have no way of knowing how your cat will react until it's too late. Declawing is a permanent solution to what is often a temporary problem. Kittens usually outgrow their urge to scale the drapes and attack your wiggling toes. Most cats naturally gravitate toward scratching posts and cardboard scratching boxes, especially if you make them more alluring with catnip and toys. Claws' destructiveness can be curtailed with biweekly trimming. You trim your dog's nails—why not your cat's?
Find more tips on discouraging cats from scratching furniture in PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk's book 250 Things You Can Do to Make Your Cat Adore You.
Via The Sacramento Bee
Written by Alisa Mullins
PETA's headquarters is hundreds of miles away from central Illinois, but that didn't stop PETA's Emergency Rescue Team (ERT) from coordinating the rescue of a mother dog and her nine newborn puppies, who were huddling in a barrel in the backyard of an abandoned house in a rural town without an animal shelter. A concerned woman alerted PETA to the situation, and ERT's staffers worked with the city's small police department to quickly get the dogs out of there and into a rescue group, where they are now safe, sound, and awaiting adoption.
Check out these tips on what to do if you spot animal abuse. Remember, cruelty to animals is a crime! Please, if you know of an animal in trouble, report it to your local police department and animal control immediately. Follow up with them to make sure that action is taken! Rally your friends, liaise with rescue groups, go to the media, and never, ever give up!
Written by Lindsay Pollard-Post
People passing by USA Network's Rockefeller Plaza headquarters yesterday were greeted by a pack of "dogs" howling against the network's decision to air the Westminster Dog Show. PETA's beagle brigade made sure that everyone heard the ugly truth about doggie beauty pageants and the dog-breeding industry: They kill shelter dogs' chances. That's because when people rush out to buy a puppy like the purebred they saw prancing around on TV, a lovable pup in an animal shelter loses a chance at a good home.
The message is getting through: PETA's "dogs" got plenty of thumbs-ups and "go get 'em's" from passersby, and one woman even cheered, "Yay, PETA! Keep doing what you're doing—great job!"
This year, Westminster added six new breeds to the dog show, while an estimated 4 million animals are still being killed in shelters each year. We can help spread this lifesaving message by reminding our friends and family members that people who really love dogs save lives by adopting their canine companions from animal shelters.
As more and more people come to understand how marine animals suffer and die while held captive at SeaWorld, the cruel aquarium chain is increasingly desperate to find some way to make itself look less heartless. Now, it's attempting to ride the adorable tails of dogs and cats by offering free tickets to its theme parks prisons to people who adopt homeless animals from certain animal shelters.
Now, PETA's all for adopting animals instead of buying them from breeders or pet shops, of course, but SeaWorld's public embrace of adoption can't make up for the miseries that it continues to inflict on animals in its parks. And if you think I'm being too hard on SeaWorld, consider this—other four-legged and feathered animals "rescued" by SeaWorld are forced to join their aquatic cousins in performing stupid tricks for tourists in the parks' "Pets Ahoy" and "Pets Rule" shows.
If you live near a SeaWorld (and even if you don't), then please, by all means, give an animal a loving home by adopting from a local animal shelter. But don't give SeaWorld cover for its wicked, wicked ways by accepting its tickets.
Written by Jeff Mackey
A survey by Purina shows that 60 percent of doggie guardians are including their pooches in their Valentine's Day plans. The survey also found that 26 percent of guardians say "I love you" to their dogs at least once a day—the same percentage that share the sentiment with their significant other on a daily basis. Might as well face it, we're addicted to loving our dogs.
That's why Purina hosted a celebrity-studded "Be My Valentine" Doggie Dinner Party, complete with a red carpet stroll for the canines and live entertainment (Three Dog Night, perhaps?). I wonder if anyone asked for a doggie bag?
If you missed the doggie dinner party in New York, don't worry—you can still host a dog party of your own. (There are lots of fun ideas in PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk's book Let's Have a Dog Party.) Or you could take a cue from a group of kindhearted second-graders in Virginia who delivered valentines to outdoor dogs in hopes of convincing their owners to show love to their dogs by taking them inside.
However you plan to pamper your pooch (or someone else's), here's wishing you a happy Valentine's Dog—er, Day!
Written by Michelle Sherrow
Emma Stone, star of the upcoming Spider-Man film, was recently snapped by photographers cuddling and walking a fetching little black-and-tan dog outside a Los Angeles doggie daycare, grooming service, and nonprofit dog rescue center. Some reports say that Stone was dropping her pooch off for grooming, while others maintain that she had just adopted the dog from the center.
Either way, it's awesome that Stone supports rescuing companion animals. Wonder if she and Penn Badgley talked about the joys of saving homeless animals on the set of Easy A …
If you start to hear reports about increasing numbers of fender-benders on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood, it's probably because so many teen girls will be slamming on their brakes to check out Justin Bieber's new billboard for PETA.
The cutie-patootie singer added to fans' Bieber fever with his new ad campaign encouraging people to help end animal homelessness by always adopting animals from shelters instead of supporting breeders.
The Biebs has a heart as big as the stadiums that he sells out. His documentary, Never Say Never, hits theaters this Friday.
After reading the last few posts about animal homelessness, euthanasia, and hoarding, some people might be wondering what they can do to help. Perhaps a few of you have even considered starting your own animal rescue group. If so, thank you for caring so deeply, but please—help us focus attention on stemming the flow.
Think of it this way: The animal overpopulation crisis is like water flooding into a sinking ship. We don't need more people bailing; we need to fix the gaping hole in the bottom of the boat! When it comes to ending animal homelessness, the most humane and sustainable solution is to pour our time, money, and effort into having animals spayed and neutered. Preventing more animals from being born stops the problem at its source. Here are some creative ways that we can work toward a no-birth nation:
Another crucial component of ending animal homelessness is educating the public about why it's so important to adopt animals instead of buying them from pet shops or breeders. If you are considering adding a cat or dog to your family, your decision will literally mean life or death for an animal waiting in an animal shelter. If you choose to buy from a breeder or a pet store, an animal at the local shelter must be euthanized. Please, always choose to save a life by adopting your animal companions from animal shelters or reputable adoption groups.
PETA has teamed up with dozens of celebrities—including Justin Bieber, Yvonne Strahovski, Lance Bass, Kellan Lutz, Joanna Krupa, Audrina Patridge, Patricia Arquette, and others—for pro-adoption public service announcements (PSAs). You can help encourage people to adopt animals, never buy, by sponsoring or obtaining free placement for one of these PSAs in a newspaper or magazine.
Thank you for caring. Animals like these are counting on compassionate people like you:
Like so many other rabbits, Bobbi was acquired on a whim and surrendered after her owners discovered how much time and effort are required to care for a rabbit. PETA found Bobbi a loving home, and she now enjoys playing with three other rabbits and sleeping in a bed with her new family.
Julie was once trapped at the end of a chain—one of the worst punishments possible for a dog, especially a collie—but PETA's fieldworkers convinced her owners to surrender her and helped place her in a wonderful home with a family who adores her.
The economic downturn has taken its toll on nearly everyone, and animals are no exception.
Animal shelters across the country are overflowing with record numbers of cats and dogs—many of whom were surrendered by people who lost their homes or could no longer afford to care for their animal companions after being laid off.
With so many animals in need of refuge, now is a terrible time for an alarming number of animal shelters to arbitrarily implement limited-admission, "no-kill" policies. These policies put animals in danger because they prompt shelters to turn animals away or they make it expensive and difficult for people who can no longer care for their animal companions to surrender them to a shelter.
The only effective way to deal with the companion animal overpopulation crisis is through aggressively pursuing laws and policies requiring people to have their animals spayed or neutered and making it easier for them to do so. When shelters refuse to take in animals—and communities fail to address the underlying causes of the problem—animals pay the price.
Under pressure from people with good intentions but no clue of the ugly reality of overpopulation—nor of the sheer number of animals who flood shelters every day—some facilities are stooping to all-time lows to manipulate their euthanasia rates. Many adopt policies and practices that endanger the very animals they should be protecting. These include charging fees for surrendering unwanted animals (sometimes outrageous fees, such as $96 for feral or stray cat "turn-ins" in Maricopa County, Arizona); requiring citizens who can't care for their animals to make appointments and "wait until there is room"; refusing to accept feral or stray cats, even when people might resort to doing them harm; refusing to accept animals from outside the invisible boundaries of a certain town or area; and giving away animals free of charge and without adequately screening adopters.
Here are just a few heart-wrenching news stories about the ways in which no-kill shelters and policies harmed animals in 2010:
PETA's small sheltering program takes in any animals who need help—even those who are aggressive, horribly injured, or terminally ill. We took in nearly 80 dogs and cats whom PETA staffers brought back from crowded New Orleans–area shelters after the Gulf oil leak nightmare dealt an additional blow to the Gulf economy.
No one ever needs to pay a fee or make an appointment to drop off an animal to PETA. Our field staff is on call 24/7; animals are accepted at all hours of the day and night. PETA's fieldworkers rushed out to help both of the following animals after receiving emergency pager calls early in the morning on weekends:
Animals like Buddy are the reason why PETA will never turn away any animal in need. Is a shelter in your community turning away animals? Work to open its doors by following these guidelines.
I don't mean to offend all the other dog parents out there, but I'm fairly certain that I have the coolest dog in the world. I don't mean to brag (well, OK, maybe I do mean to brag), but my German shepherd-something-something-something-mix, Hannah, is pretty much awesome. And, of course, she's a rescue. I love it when people ask me about Hannah because then I can tell them how many terrific animals are just hanging out at animal shelters waiting for their forever families to come along. But when you don't have an adorable rescued dog like Hannah at your side, you can still get people to ask you about animal shelters if you're wearing PETA's 'Adopt, Don't Buy' T-shirt.
Don't have one? Well, that's easy to fix—we'll give you a chance to win one just for telling us about your awesome rescued animal in the comment section below. The person who does the best job of convincing us that his or her dog or cat is the coolest in the world (the coolest dog or cat besides Hannah, of course) will win a tee that can be used to tell others to always adopt and never buy.
The contest ends on February 16, 2011, and the winner will be chosen on February 18, 2011.
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.