Written by Michelle Kretzer
A driver in southern Georgia was shocked when she spotted a pitiful-looking dog hanging on for dear life to the top of a crate in the back of a pickup truck that was careening down the interstate. A heavy chain around the animal's neck that was hooked to the top of the crate looked as if it could have choked the dog, but it may well have been the only thing that kept the pup from flying onto the asphalt as the truck whizzed in and out of traffic.
Thinking quickly, the woman immediately got behind the truck and snapped pictures of the dog and the vehicle's license plate. She was shocked to see that the dog was underweight, covered with wounds, and wearing a hunting vest. As soon as she got home, she contacted PETA and forwarded the pictures to us.
PETA's Emergency Response Team traced the license plate to a county in Florida, a state that has a law against transporting animals inhumanely. Forcing a dog to try to hang on for fear of falling out of a speeding vehicle certainly qualifies, so PETA shared the evidence with law-enforcement officials without delay.
In no time, officers were knocking on the teenage driver's door. He admitted that he had used the dog for hunting and then chained the animal in the back of the truck. The teen agreed to turn over the dog as well as five others and was sentenced to 150 hours of community service. The officers took the dogs to a local animal shelter, where they have been put up for adoption.
If you ever see an animal being cruelly transported in the back of a pickup truck, alert authorities. Even if it isn't specifically illegal in your area, you can still ask police to intervene, arguing that not only does it jeopardize the animal's safety, other drivers on the road could also be seriously injured or killed if the dog fell out and caused an accident.
It's fitting that a man who sold dogs to
laboratories may end up behind bars himself. A federal court sentenced Floyd Martin to a year
in prison after he and his wife, Susan, illegally purchased hundreds of dogs and sold them to laboratories.
Susan Martin was convicted of conspiracy and received probation. The couple was
fined $300,000. They had pocketed hundreds of thousands of dollars from selling
dogs to be tormented and, in all likelihood, killed.
And the dogs weren't tormented only when
they got to the laboratories. A U.S. Department of Agriculture investigation of
the Martins' dingy facility, Chestnut Grove Kennel, resulted in citations for violations
of animal welfare laws, such as housing incompatible dogs together, leaving dogs
with injuries seemingly untreated, having dangerous enclosures, and more. PETA
obtained these never-before-released pictures from inside the facility:
It's not illegal for animal dealers like
the Martins to buy animals from "bunchers," people who pick animals
up off the streets, steal them from backyards, or obtain them from animal shelters
or "free to a good home" ads. But federal law limits the Martins and
other "random source" dealers—like notorious R&R Research, which
PETA exposed not long ago—to purchasing only 24 animals a year from each buncher in order to
try to keep illegal acts to a minimum. The Martins purchased hundreds of dogs
from just two individuals, then lied on documents to cover it up.
Because of such
rampant illegal activity and abuse of animals, PETA and others have long
campaigned for lawmakers to shut down random source dealers. And our efforts are paying off: The National
Institutes of Health, which funds most experiments on animals in the U.S., won't allow the use of animals from Class B dealers after 2015. And
last session, Congress introduced the Pet Safety and Protection Act of 2011,
which would prohibit Class B dealers from selling animals to laboratories.
to barren, muddy pens with no protection from the elements, no food, and no
water, the nearly 70 dogs owned by Cajun Country "Ranch and Animal Rescue" in Wilburton, Oklahoma,
were struggling to survive. Their skin was stretched tightly over their rib
cages, and fleas and ticks had ravaged their bodies. The horses on the property
fared no better, their bones clearly visible. The bones of dead dogs lay piled
up like leaves, and more bones were scattered throughout the property.
PETA received a tip-off, we alerted local officials, who told us that they
shared our concerns. One of our contacts in the area was an expert on hoarding situations, and after
he surveyed the property for us, he confirmed our fears about the "rescue."
next day, armed with a warrant, police raided the property and arrested the
owners, Anne Marie and Shane Duhon. According to news reports when police entered the
couple's home, they found three children living in squalor. Animal feces
covered the house, including the children's beds, and cockroaches crawled
across the littered floor. Reportedly, the children were covered with bites
from fleas, ticks, and other insects. While the Department of Human Services
took the children to a safe location, a multitude of volunteers, mobilized by
PETA supporters in the area, came in with horse trailers and kennels and moved
all the animals to awaiting reputable rescues and animal
of the animals were so far gone that they needed to be euthanized. At
trial, the Duhons pleaded
guilty to child neglect and
cruelty-to-animals charges. They were put on probation for five years, banned
from having any animals during that time, and told that if they violated the
terms of their probation, they could face prison time.
While animal hoarding
behavior stems from a desire to "save" animals, hoarders' mental
illness causes them to keep amassing animals, and well-meaning people encourage
hoarders by giving them animals and/or money. They end up with far more animals
than they are capable of caring for—with disastrous, deadly consequences for
their victims. If you suspect that a local "rescue" is actually a
hoarder, alert animal control or PETA immediately.
Written by Jeff Mackey
Our hearts have been saddened by the shocking news that Jessie Streich-Kest—who worked closely with PETA on campaigns to end the use of horse-drawn
carriages in New York City—was killed along with a friend by a falling tree in Brooklyn's Ditmas Park during
Hurricane Sandy while
walking her dog, Max, who is recovering
from his injuries. Jessie was just 24 years old. PETA is paying tribute to her
memory by adding her name to a leaf plaque on our Tree of Life.
Jessie was a dedicated advocate for animals who served as a
field organizer for NYCLASS (New Yorkers for Clean, Livable and Safe Streets). She
was outspoken about the need to shut down the horse-drawn carriage trade
because of the miseries
inflicted on the horses—including extreme weather, chaotic traffic, hard pavement, exhaust fumes, loud noises,
inadequate care, and eventual slaughter—as well as the dangers to the public. Our thoughts and prayers go out to her family at this difficult time.
What You Can Do
Although our hearts mourn the loss of Jessie, PETA is more determined
than ever to realize her goal of improving the lives of New York's horses—and
you can help. Please help us pay tribute to Jessie by urging City Council Speaker Christine Quinn to support legislation to phase out the use of horse-drawn carriages in favor
of humane, safe, and eco-friendly electric versions of classic cars.
Written by Lindsay Pollard-Post
Joshua Moore has been indicted on five felony counts of animal torture, five
felony counts of aggravated cruelty, and one misdemeanor count of depicting
animal torture. PETA presented the Chicago Police Department's Animal Crimes Team
with a Hero to Animals Award for its swift work in seizing the abused dogs—five
dogs and five puppies—and promptly charging Moore for his crimes.
A man and a boy who physically and psychologically tortured several small dogs in a series of sadistic YouTube videos have been charged with multiple counts of felony and misdemeanor cruelty to animals, thanks to the swift work of PETA and authorities in Fort Wayne, Indiana, and Chicago.
The videos show 22-year-old Joshua Moore and a teenage boy hanging and spinning a dog by a leash, violently ripping duct tape off a dog's testicles, and biting a dog's neck until he cried in pain. The pair is also shown hiding a mother dog's five puppies and watching as she frantically searches for them, repeatedly throwing the mother dog in the air, trying to force a dog to eat feces, and pouring lemon juice down a dog's throat, among other horrors.
The clips have been taken off YouTube, but PETA saved the video evidence (which would have otherwise been lost!) and provided it to Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control (FWACC) on Sunday. The agency immediately jumped into action to locate Moore, who had posted on his Facebook page that he was living in Fort Wayne.
On Tuesday morning, a Fort Wayne vice and narcotics officer identified Moore, at which time Moore was detained, interviewed by FWACC, and released. The videos, information gained from the interview, and supporting reports were immediately forwarded to the Chicago Police Department, giving that agency the probable cause needed to take action. On Thursday evening, FWACC intercepted the bus that Moore was traveling on from Fort Wayne to Chicago, where Chicago police officers were waiting.
Moore was arrested and charged with four felony counts of cruelty to animals and eight misdemeanor counts of cruelty to animals. The 13-year-old has been charged as a juvenile with six counts of aggravated cruelty to animals and three counts of animal torture. Ten dogs, including five puppies, were seized and are now in protective custody.
These dogs would still likely be suffering at the hands of their abusers if someone hadn't alerted us to the videos. If you know or suspect that someone is harming animals, don't delay—report cruelty immediately to local law-enforcement officials and animal control authorities, and if you don't get anywhere, contact PETA. You'll help keep the whole community safer by speaking up—animal abusers are bullies who victimize the defenseless, including members of their own species.
Written by PETA
annrkist | cc by 2.0
was working as a
driving from one neglect case investigation to another, when I saw him: a large
dog, limping pitifully down the middle of a busy, four-lane street, with
traffic whizzing past him. I stopped my car and got out. The dog stumbled into
my looped slip leash, and when I scratched his ear, he sighed and leaned into
I carried this
thin, dirty fellow to my car. Some dogs stiffen in fear, but this big guy just
melted into my arms. He clearly had been a handsome boy at one point, but his
eyes and nose were now crusted as a result of an upper respiratory infection,
his coat was filthy and matted, and he had an odor that surely bothered him as
much as it did me.
rushed the dog to the animal shelter, where the veterinarian determined that he
was elderly, with enough health issues to merit charges for failure to provide
veterinary care if the person who neglected him could ever be found. Euthanasia was undoubtedly a mercy
for this poor old soul. A technician
gave him an injection, and he left this world.
this day, I find myself asking, "Who denied care to this sweet dog in his
senior years? Hadn't neighbors noticed his condition? Why didn't anyone stop to
save an old dog who was walking down the middle of a busy street?"
met hundreds of animals who have been saved from suffering and danger because a
kind person refused to just look the other way and keep going. Please, for the
sake of animals like this dog, report neglect and abuse immediately, and if you
see an animal in danger, always stop to help.
Written by Scott VanValkenburg, the PETA
Foundation's director of membership communications
& special projects
An Osceola, Indiana, man suffered two broken arms and severe flesh wounds after his dog escaped from a cage and attacked him while he was sitting on the couch. And a 4-year-old Brooklyn boy was mauled to death inside his apartment by a dog who was normally kept caged. As a neighbor aptly said, "When you cage an animal and let it out, what do you think it will do? An animal goes wild."
Jailing dogs—who are curious, sensitive, and highly social animals—in boxes is cruel and a recipe for disaster. Like chaining, crating deprives dogs of exercise, mental stimulation, and social interaction—everything that they need to be happy and well-adjusted—and can turn them into ticking time bombs. Crated dogs are prone to depression, hyperactivity, and aggression.
Let's hope that these tragic attacks serve as a wake-up call for people who insist that their dogs "love" to be locked in cages all day long. Enlist a dog-walker, pet sitter, or doggy daycare; install a doggie door; and/or enroll in a humane, interactive training class with your dogs—don't sentence them to the cruel and unusual punishment of a life lived behind bars.
A Utah town councilmember allegedly shot and killed his neighbor's 9-month-old Chihuahua, Rocky, simply because he was annoyed by the puppy's barking. Yes, there was reportedly alcohol involved, but surely even an inebriated government official should know that you try talking to your neighbor instead of hauling out the heavy artillery.
Unfortunately, hotheaded numbskulls like the person who killed Rocky lurk in just about every neighborhood. PETA regularly receives reports about unattended animals who have been shot, poisoned, beaten, or even set on fire right in their own yards. Rocky's tragic fate should serve as a reminder not to leave animals outside unsupervised.
If you hear a dog in your neighborhood barking 'round the clock, go have a chat with the dog's guardian. Most localities have noise ordinances, and dogs who are outside barking all the time may be neglected, so have a look. Let guardians know how dangerous it is to allow their dogs to bark nonstop. It's better for them to get a wake-up call from a neighbor—or even the police—telling them to keep the dog inside than it would be to wake up to gunfire one day and find their beloved dog lying dead in the yard, killed by an angry neighbor.
Written by Michelle Sherrow
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.