Written by PETA
A whistleblower recently reported that a Washington Mutual (WaMu) branch in the Chicago area was using glue traps to catch mice.
We contacted James Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase—which recently acquired WaMu—and explained that animals entangled in glue traps often suffer from torn flesh and even broken bones resulting from their panicked efforts to escape. JPMorgan Chase's vice president promptly announced that the company has ditched glue traps permanently and will be opting for more humane methods of resolving conflicts with mice and rats (we recommend these). Yay!
As a leading company, we hope that JPMorgan Chase will inspire other companies (ahem, Lowe's) to ditch glue traps too.
Feel free to post a comment below thanking JPMorgan Chase for sticking up for mice.
Written by Liz Graffeo
It should be no surprise to regular readers of this blog that we keep an eye on happenings at KFC, so this caught our eye: According to news reports, the manager of a KFC in Manchester, New Hampshire, received a hoax phone call from someone who claimed to be from KFC's corporate offices and told her to test the fire-suppression system. When she did so, she and two staffers preparing sandwiches were coated with a chemical powder that is a respiratory irritant. Authorities were summoned, who took the unfortunate trio to the hospital for decontamination.
Just a couple of observations:
Written by Jeff Mackey
It's with deep regret and sadness that we announce the passing of Paul Harvey—a man who for decades used his voice to speak up against the injustices suffered by animals.
As America's most listened-to radio personality, Mr. Harvey formed a connection with his audience like none other. His quirky delivery style and fascinating tidbits drew in a loyal audience of more than 25 million listeners.
Mr. Harvey used his popular radio show to call attention to cruelty to animals on numerous occasions, earning him a PETA Humanitarian Award and my unending admiration. Mr. Harvey often told his listeners of the cruelty, redundancy, and worthlessness of animal experiments and spoke out forcefully in support of animal rights activists. Fearlessly opinionated, he criticized the Boy Scouts and the military for killing animals in survival exercises and educated public about the cruelty inherent in circuses.
One of our fondest memories is the day he denounced the National Institutes of Health for funding a researcher who gave baboons hallucinogenic drugs and shocked them until they went into convulsions, resulting in brain damage. His determination to open his listeners' eyes to the gut-wrenching facts about testing on animals changed millions of minds and saved countless animals' lives.
While Mr. Harvey's powerful voice is now silent, the people he touched will continue to spread his message of compassion for animals.
Written by Kathy Guillermo
You don't have to answer that. But answer this: What do you get when you cross a lemur, a monkey, and an alligator named Bob? If you're Arlin Valdez-Castillo—you get angry skin lesions and a humdinger of a lawsuit. According to court documents, in 2004, Ms. Valdez-Castillo, a housekeeper at a Hampton Inn in Miami, allegedly developed zoonosis (a disease spread from animals to humans) after cleaning hotel rooms occupied by lemurs, spider monkeys, a parrot, and a five-foot long alligator named Bob. I kid you not.
Part of a traveling zoo hired by Busch Gardens, Bob and his buddies allegedly left lots of dander, urine, feathers, and feces for Ms. Valdez-Castillo to clean up. After falling seriously ill, she was hospitalized for two weeks with skin lesions all over her body, which doctors attributed to coming into contact with exotic animals. Five years later, she still has recurring lesions and a painful infection that has spread to her nervous system. But wait, there's more: Ms. Valdez-Castillo also claims that she was kidnapped by two men who took her to a cemetery and warned her to drop the lawsuit (I'm thinking that Valerie Bertinelli should play her in the Lifetime movie).
So what did lawyers for Busch Gardens have to say about all this? It's Valdez-Castillo's fault that she was allergic to the animals. In other words, stop bitching and take a Benadryl. Honestly though, how much sympathy can you really expect from a corporation that carts animals around to "entertain" at basketball games, schools, and other events? After all, animals used in roadside menageries and traveling zoo exhibits are deprived of just about everything that is natural to them. Their lives are a constant cycle of traveling in cramped cages and being gawked at, poked at, and mishandled by noisy crowds. Not to mention the fact that animal exhibits are public-health disasters waiting to happen. We're talking tens of thousands of cases of salmonella and E. coli from casual contact with animals every year!
So, what have we learned? Let's see—steer clear of all animal exhibits and hotel rooms with monkey crap on the carpet.
Written by Amy Elizabeth
Well, Michelle Obama has gone and done it: She 'fessed up to People magazine that the first family is leaning toward adopting a Portuguese water dog. To give her credit, she stresses that the family plans to adopt the dog from a shelter or rescue group, but we sure do wish that she'd quit fixating so much on the dog's breed.
Already, the mere mention a few months ago that the Obamas had narrowed their choice to a "Portie" or a Labradoodle has caused a flurry of Google searches for those breeds. I personally know a couple who bought not one but two goldendoodle puppies because anything "doodle" is oh-so-fashionable these days. (This same couple had previously visited an animal shelter and was poised to adopt two homeless mutts until they became wooed by the latest fad, proof of our assertion that breeders kill shelter dogs' chances of finding homes.)
Admittedly, it probably sets a slightly better example to adopt a Portuguese water dog than it would to pick a Labradoodle or a goldendoodle—those breeds are virtually guaranteed to come from puppy mills.
But Portie enthusiasts with a conscience are not terribly happy about getting a nod from the Obamas. As they and PETA's Daphna Nachminovitch point out in this Associated Press article, whenever a breed becomes fashionable, puppy mills jump into the game to satisfy the demand of uninformed people. Only later do these folks realize that, oops, Porties would willingly run several marathons and swim across the English Channel—all before breakfast.
I used to dog-sit for a Portie named Riley. He was a sweetie, just as breeders claim, but he was also hyper, to put it mildly. He had boundless energy and was obsessed with water—if he jumped into the river that runs alongside the PETA dog park, it was almost impossible to coax him out. In the car, he bounced Tigger-like from back seat to front, in between bouts of carsickness. He was the ideal dog for, say, Michael Phelps or a professional surfer—not so ideal for a busy family.
What the Obamas (and lots of other people) don't seem to understand is that you don't have to pre-select a certain breed and then set out to find a dog who meets that criterion. You can go to your local animal shelter, walk down the rows of cages, and pick out a dog of any old breed (or, better yet, mix of breeds), spend some time with him or her, and discover that, yes, this is the dog for you. It's kind of a crazy idea, but I'm hoping it just might catch on.
Written by Alisa Mullins
When you work for PETA, it's hard to ever really go on vacation. That's because everywhere you go, you are bound to encounter people doing not-so-nice things to animals. Take my recent trip to Egypt. Skinny stray cats and dogs were hanging around outside all the hotels and restaurants, camels were living in squalor outside the pyramids for the sake of a photo opportunity, and the streets at all the big tourist spots were thick with horse-drawn carriages. I took these photos in Luxor, home to the famous Karnak temple and the Valley of the Kings and therefore overrun with sightseers. The carriages were lined up for a whole city block, waiting to draw in gullible tourists:
Many of the horses are hobbled when they aren't working. This one was hobbled so tightly that he couldn't move even an inch in any direction:
Notice the sores on the horse's knees. I saw many horses with such sores. I saw no indication that working horses were ever provided water or shade. The cracks of the drivers' whips could be heard blocks away.
These people are in business strictly to cater to tourists, who ignorantly think horse-drawn carriage rides are "romantic." Somehow, I miss the "romance" in staring at the rump of a tired and dejected horse.
Fortunately, the good folks of Rome (the birthplace of romance) agree. Rome's city council recently restricted the use of horse-drawn carriages to city parks, allowing them on city streets only on weekends. During the week, carriage operators will instead ferry tourists around in vintage-looking electric cars, (similar to the cars that New York City is currently thinking of employing). The move came in response to the death of Birillo, a horse who broke his leg after being hit by a truck and who lay on the street in agony for four hours before being euthanized.
In honor of Birillo and all his toiling brethren, give a carriage driver a piece of your mind and give the horse an apple (carry some with you for the purpose) instead of spending your hard-earned coin the next time you're on vacation.
Written by Joel Bartlett
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.
Follow PETA on Twitter!
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.