Letters [Oct 2003]

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, October 2003:

Chimp rescue

Thank you for “Chimp sanctuaries save
evidence of human origin,” in your July/August
The last sentence, explaining that Bala
Amarasekaran and the Tacugama Chimp Sanctuary
survived in Liberia because the sanctuary was
“viewed as an authentically valuable community
institution,” is the crunch: without local
backing, we are wasting our time.
With this in mind we in Gambia are
becoming more and more involved in peripheral
work which might seem to have no bearing on the
chimp project. For example, we now operate a
small medical clinic. We provide assistance with
schooling, including financial aid for the
students and for maintaining the school building
with volunteer staff. Currently there are only
two teachers for 300+ kids. We also help to look
after draft animals (for which purpose the
Gambian Horse & Donkey Trust is now up and
running). We are emphasizing the entrepreneurial
opportunities arising from a visitor camp,
including for suppliers of fresh food from local

These activities are undertaken because
we recognise that unless the community sees the
chimps as a stimulus to improved human welfare,
the chimps and possibly the national park have no
longterm future.
The fact that some of our staff have been
with us for almost 30 years indicates the kind of
relationships we are building, but it is always
difficult. A group from one of “our” villages
recently hired a hunter to shoot a hippo who was
damaging a rice field. We now employ men to stay
in the rice fields all night to scare the hippos
away. But we are fairly sure that it was not
just a case of the villagers wanting to protect
their rice. Hippo meat has financial value,
and this was an excuse to shoot the hippo so as
to be able to sell the meat.
Obviously we still have to push the
message that if there are no hippos and other
wildlife to see, there will be no visitors, and
no visitor-related employment.
–David Marsden
Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Trust
Gambia [Contact c/o
6 Highmoor Cross
Oxon RG9 5DP
United Kingdom
Phone: 44-0-1242-675720

Wyeth takes Premarin to India

In April 1993 ANIMAL PEOPLE brought the
attention of the world to the prolonged cramped
confinement of the pregnant mares whose urine is
collected to make the hormone drug Premarin. You
exposed as well the sale to slaughter of most of
their offspring.
In September 2003 you reported about the
momentous decision of the U.S. National
Institutes of Health to end studies of the
Premarin-based drug Prempro, due to an increased
incidence of life-threatening diseases among
participating women.
While we commend the NIH for their
decisive and timely action, we are concerned
that Wyeth Pharmaceuticals continues to market a
drug that is linked to health hazards such as
breast cancer, heart disease, blood clots,
strokes, ovarian cancer, and dementia.
It was reported in October 2002 that
Wyeth launched its Premarin brands, Premelle and
Premelle Cycle, in India. The impact of this
campaign remains to be seen.
While sales have dropped in North
America, Prempro and related products continue
to be prescribed by physicians.
The Women’s Health and Ethics Coalition
has formed to bring further attention to the
health, humane, and environmental concerns
surrounding the use of Prempro and Premarin, and
to ask governmental agencies and the medical
community to initiate an end to the manufacture
and export of Premarin and its related
products-on the grounds that continued production
of these drugs is damaging to human consumers,
the environment, and horses.
We welcome alliances with organizations
and concerned individuals from around the world.
–Sinikka Crosland, R.N. (Retired) and
Ray Kellosalmi, BSc., M.D., L.M.C.C.
Women’s Health and Ethics Coalition
3430 Turnbull Road
Westbank, B.C.
V4T 1W3
Phone: 250-768-4803

Gaps in law

I hope you will take up the matter of
birds and other animals who are nominally
protected under CITES regulations but not under
national laws. These creatures are often
exported to countries where there are no rules
governing their treatment. Parrots, lovebirds,
macaws, cockatoos, and even chimpanzees and
hippos are brought to India, for example, by
circuses and bird sellers. When there is a case
of maltreatment, our forest and wild-life agency
personnel say that these are not protected under
our Wildlife Protection Act, so they cannot
seize the animals or take any other action.
Similarly there are no recommendations
about cage size and their upkeep in the Indian
rules governing zoos.
–Sandeep Kumar Jain
Ahimsa International
C-III/3129, Vasant Kunj
New Delhi 110 070, India

Mobile clinics

Our county animal control agency is
thinking about buying a mobile sterilization
clinic, but we have heard that other locales
have abandoned such projects.
Do you have any information about this?
–Catherine E. Boyett, DVM
Estero, Florida

The Editor replies:

After more than a dozen years of using
mobile clinics to facilitate dog and cat
sterilization in communities with limited access
to veterinary services, many pioneers of the
approach are rethinking it.
Arnold Brown, DVM, of Trumbull,
Connecticut, was among the first dog-and-cat
vets in the U.S. to use a mobile clinic. As
early as 1992, however, Brown observed to
ANIMAL PEOPLE that having volunteer shuttle
drivers bring feral cats to his fixed-location
clinic is much more cost-efficient than taking
the mobile clinic to the cats.
Spay/Neuter All Pets, started in 1994 by
Sean Hawkins, has a fixed-site clinic in Houston,
mobile clinics in Houston and San Antonio, a
mobile clinic serving Native American
communities, and a mobile clinic in Mexico. The
fixed-site clinic does more sterilizations by
itself than any three of the four mobile clinics,
even though the mobile clinics perform at high
Jeff Young, DVM, of Planned Pethood
Plus in Denver, a decade ago became the first
vet to sterilize more than 5,000 animals in a
year using a mobile unit. Then Young realized
that he could become even more efficient if
instead of using his mobile unit as a surgical
theatre, he used it to haul surgical supplies
plus a portable field hospital, which he can set
up within minutes.
“I can work anywhere with a roof, water,
and electricity,” Young told ANIMAL PEOPLE. “I
can set up a tent and use my own generator and
pump if I have to. Even then, it is more
efficient to use my van for hauling. In the
field, resupply is often a bigger problem than
finding a place to improvise a surgical theatre,
and the best way around it is bringing more

Veggie dining

We’re launching a vote for Vegetarian
Restaurants of the Year and would appreciate if
you could help us get the word out. Votes for
favorite restaurants in city categories from
Adelaide to Zurich can be submitted online at
VegDining.com until December 31. Restaurant
winners will be announced in early January 2004.
Keep up the great work !
–Dennis Bayomi
Winnipeg Vegetarian Association
P.O. Box 2721
Winnipeg, Manitoba


Vegan dog food

In August of 2002 my dear canine
companion of 14 years, Lotus, died. To honor her
memory, I donated 1,000 cans of vegan dog food to
her veterinarian’s practice (for the most part,
Lotus had been a lifelong vegan). I arranged to
buy the food at wholesale cost from a local store
in exchange for the publicity that the store
would receive. The veterinarian agreed to set up
a display rack in his waiting room, where
interested clients could read a brochure on
vegetarianism and take a free can of food for
each dog they had. I produced the brochure
myself. It may be downloaded at
I would like to recommend this idea to
other readers of Animal People. I would be happy
to let others adapt the brochure for their own
–Scott Plous
Middletown, Connecticut

Chronology of Humane Progress

The long and difficult years of my
advocacy for animal rights and welfare in my
country, the Philippines, have been honoured
and richly rewarded by the inclusion of my name
and that of the Philippine Animal Welfare Society
(PAWS) in the May 2003 installment of your
prestigious and historic “Chronology of Humane
Although you listed the reorganization of
PAWS in your entry for 1982, together with the
formation by Sunnan Kum of the Korea Animal
Welfare Society, I actually reorganized PAWS in
1986. Republic Act 8485, which protects all
animals nationwide, was passed in 1998.
Animal People got me to Hong Kong,
where at the recent Asia for Animals conference I
was re-charged by people I wish I could be with
every day. What those few days did for my
sagging morale cannot be expressed in words.
–Nita Hontiveros-Lichauco, President
Philippine Animal Welfare Society
87 Small Horseshoe Dr.
New Manilla, Quezon City 1112
The Philippines
Phone: 63-2-724-6395
Fax: 63-2-724-1986

Note from Rio

The Brazilian League of Animal Rights is
deeply grateful for receiving ANIMAL PEOPLE,
which is of great help to us. We do our best to
expose abusive animal experimentation and other
torturous exploitation of animals. Our vice
president, Mrs. Anabella Linhares, has written
on our behalf to Korea to protest against the
sale of dog meat, and to China, complaining
about bear bile farming. She is a teacher, and
her pupils also read ANIMAL PEOPLE, inspiring
them to express their opinions about what should
be done in Brazil to prevent cruelty to animals.
–Daisy Muniz Barreto Mandim Serra
Liga Brasileira dos Direitos do Animal
Rua Barata Ribeiro 26, #804
22011-000, Copacabana
Rio de Janeiro, Brasil

Burmese pythons

A while back I asked for your advice
about finding an appropriate home for two large
Burmese pythons. You advised networking through
local herpetological societies, and guess what?
It worked!! Our veterinarian friend contacted
the Seattle Herp Society, and they hooked her up
with a private reptile rescuer who took both. Our
veterinarian delivered the snakes in person, and
seemed to be impressed with the individual and
his knowledge of reptiles. Evidently his rescue
operation is not yet 501(c)(3), but he is
thinking about it.
Thanks once again for your expert advice.
In this case, it helped to facilitate a good
result in a very difficult and potentially tragic
situation. You’re a treasure!
–Marilee Meyer
Seattle, Washington

Thanks for the good words. Very few
herpetological rescuers have 501(c)(3) status
because practically nobody donates to help
snakes. These folks usually fund their rescue
operations strictly out of their own pockets.

Foie gras banned

We would like to inform you that
recently, the Israeli Supreme Court has made a
strong statement concerning the production of
liver paste in Israel.
On August 11 the court outlawed the
practice of force-feeding geese and ducks for the
production of liver pâté, a practice that the
justices said was unnecessarily cruel. The
Israeli animal rights group ANONYMOUS was
instrumental in bringing the case before the
Supreme Court.
–Bob and Roberta Kalechofsky
Jews for Animal Rights
255 Humphrey Street
Marblehead, MA 01945


Bruce Eberle lawsuit

I am enclosing $1,000 U.S. as my donation
to ANIMAL PEOPLE to continue the wonderful work
you are doing. The amount may be used as you
deem fit, including to meet the costs of your
defense against the legal actions brought by
fundraiser Bruce Eberle.
–Chinny Krishna, Ph.D.
Chennai, India

Editor’s note:

Chinny Krishna made this donation from
his personal resources, not as managing trustee
of the Blue Cross of India.
We have never solicited funds from
developing nations, and urged Krishna to direct
this contribution instead toward the excellent
work of the Blue Cross of India and/or other
Indian animal welfare organizations.
Krishna responded that it was not only his wish
but also the wish of many other Indian animal
advocates that they should assist ANIMAL PEOPLE
in our effort to establish the principles
outlined in our Code of Ethics for Animal
Charities and Fundraisers (published in our May
2003 edition), and that he wished to make this
gift on symbolic behalf of all of them.
ANIMAL PEOPLE has since Sept-ember 2000
repeatedly exposed the tactics and history of
fundraiser Bruce Eberle, whose campaigns and the
IRS Form 990 filings of the animal charities he
represents have consistently failed to meet the
ANIMAL PEOPLE standards and have often flunked
the standards of the Wise Giving Alliance.
The June 2003 judicially encouraged
settlement of a libel suit brought by Eberle
required correction of two statements quoted and
paraphrased from Wildlife Waystation founder
Martine Colette, an Eberle client, which were
never presented as anyone’s position other than
hers, plus two brief garbled summaries that
never actually appeared in the ANIMAL PEOPLE
newspaper, nor at our web site. ANIMAL PEOPLE
had long before corrected and clarified all of
the items at issue.
Eberle received no retractions of main
coverage, no damages or costs, no admission of
alleged libel and tortious interference in
business relationships, and no apology.
Eberle has since then filed a series of
motions seeking injunctions against distribution
of the June 2003 edition of ANIMAL PEOPLE and
accusing ANIMAL PEOPLE of contempt of court, for
allegedly improperly disclosing proprietary
financial data about his fundraising businesses
in a table that accompanied our reportage of the
settlement. Several of the Eberle motions have
been dismissed by the court, but yet another was
filed on October 6.
In addition to Wildlife Waystation,
animal charities currently or recently
represented by Eberle include the Elephants of
Africa Rescue Society, Exotic Cat Refuge &
Wildlife Orphanage, Great Cats In Crisis,
Lifesavers Wild Horse Rescue, Noah’s Lost Ark,
Peaceful Valley Donkey Sanctuary, Tiger Creek,
and Tiger Haven.


The print version of the September 2003
ANIMAL PEOPLE editorial misstated, in
summarizing commentary by Judaism & Vegetarianism
author Richard Schwartz, that “The vegetarian
Abel eventually murdered Cain, the herdsman
favored by God.”
Actually, it was the vegetarian Cain who
eventually murdered Abel, the herdsman favored
by God.
On page 20, Shiprock, New Mexico, was
mentioned as “capitol of the Navajo nation.”
Shiprock is the largest city in the Navajo
nation, but the capitol is actually Window Rock,
The July/August 2003 edition mentioned on
page 13 that the former South Texas Primate
Observatory “became the Texas Snow Monkey
Sanctuary in 1991 when the Animal Protection
Institute assumed responsibility for funding it.
Founding director Lou Griffin was fired in early
1992.” API actually took over the sanctuary in
2001; Griffin was fired in early 2002. Related
litigation continues.

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