BOOKS: Working Dogs: True Stories of Dogs & Their Handlers

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 2004:

Working Dogs: True Stories of Dogs & Their Handlers
by Kristin Mehus-Roe
with photos by Keith May
Bowtie Press (3 Burroughs, Irvine, CA 92618), 2003.
240 pages, paperback. $21.95.

Kristin Mehus-Roe offers a thorough introduction to the use
of dogs in hunting, herding, helping the disabled, providing
emotional therapy, pulling sleds and other vehicles, performing as
entertainers, detecting contraband, guarding, tracking, and
rescuing.
Among these 12 common canine jobs, Mehus-Roe lists hunting
first, because it evolved first. Dogs probably hunted and scavenged
in loose partnership with other species for millions of years before
humans evolved, much as coyotes and jackals continue to hunt and
scavenge in partnerships of convenience with badgers, crows,
baboons, and big cats. Typically the canines help to corner the
prey, let the other species do the most dangerous part of the
killing, then share the remains.

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BOOKS: Dogs Don’t Bite When a Growl Will Do

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 2004:

Dogs Don’t Bite When a Growl Will Do
by Matt Weinstein & Luke Barber
Berkeley Publishing Group (c/o Penguin USA, 375 Hudson St., New
York, NY 10014), 2003. 282 pages, hardcover. $19.95

Playfair Inc. management consulting firm founder Matt
Weinstein and philosophy professor Luke Barber have compiled 67 short
lessons on how to make one’s life happier by adopting or adapting
some canine philosophy.
The book could also be called “67 lessons in being Zen like
your dog.” Each lesson starts with an observation about canine
behaviour, and then extrapolates it to human habits. Using the dog
story to expose a common social or psychological flaw in humans,
Weinstein and Barber reveal how silly and futile many cherished human
beliefs and habits are. Ancient wisdom is quoted in support of the
ways of the canine Zen masters:
“Celebrate your life every moment that you have. No event in
life is too small to celebrate. Live fully. Love and laugh
wastefully. Take pleasure in the little things. Play and roll on
your back in the park. Forgive even if you cannot forget–grudges
only make you unhappy.”
We can learn from dogs to be receptive, playful,
optimistic, easily satisfied, sensitive, faithful, curious, and
compassionate. –Chris Mercer & Bev Pervan

Feral cats, urban wildlife, and species survival amid human enterprise

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 2004:

TNR Past, Present, & Future:
A History of the Trap-Neuter-Return Movement
by Ellen Perry Berkeley
Alley Cat Allies (1801 Belmont Rd. NW, Suite 201, Washington, DC
20009), 2004.
100 pages, paperback. $16.00.

The Raccoon Next Door: Getting Along With Urban Wildlife
by Gary Bogue
illustrated by Chuck Todd
Heyday Books (POB 9145, Berkeley, CA 94709), 2003. 142 pages,
paperback. $16.95.

Win-Win Ecology:
How the Earth’s Species Can Survive In The Midst of Human Enterprise
by Michael L. Rosenzweig
Oxford University Press (198 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10016), 2003.
209 pages, hardcover. $27.00.

Ellen Perry Berkeley’s 1982 volume Maverick Cats, especially
the 1987 reprint, is justly credited with introducing appreciation
and understanding of feral cats to the U.S. humane movement. Focusing
on the ecological roles of feral cats, Berkeley included a
description of neuter/return feral cat population control, then
known to be widely used only in Britain.

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Marine mammals

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 2004:

Whaling

Humane Society International, a division of the Humane
Society of the U.S., on October 18 sued the Japanese whaling firm
Kyodo Sepaku Kaisha for allegedly illegally killing 428 whales since
2000 in the name of scientific research within the Australian Whale
Sanctuary. The sanctuary was created, on paper, by the Environment
Protection & Biodiversity Conservation Act of 2000, and adjoins the
Southern Oceans Whale Sanctuary declared in 1994 by the International
Whaling Commission. Japan does not recognize either sanctuary. The
suit against Kyodo Sepaku Kaisha is reportedly preliminary to seeking
an injunction asking the Australian government to enforce the
sanctuary bounds.
The suit was filed on the same day that Mali, landlocked in
the Sahara desert, joined the IWC, apparently with Japanese
support. Japan has acknowledged using development aid to persuade
small nations to join the IWC and support the Japanese position.
The HSI lawsuit was also filed one week after a trawling crew
doing research for the Tasmanian Aquaculture & Fisheries Institute
accidentally netted and drowned 14 dolphins, raising suspicion,
because of the ease with which the accident happened, that the
Australian Fisheries Management Authority and Department of the
Environment may be overlooking much greater numbers of dolphins
killed accidentally by commercial fishers.

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Appellate verdicts: 1st Amendment, trapping, pigs

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 2004:

Confining anti-circus and rodeo
protesters to “free expression zones” far from
the entrance to the state-owned Cow Palace arena
in San Francisco violates their First Amend-ment
rights to freedom of speech and assembly, a
three-judge panel of the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court
of Appeals ruled on October 20, 2004.
“Cordoning protesters off in a zone the size of a
parking space, located over 200 feet from the
entrance, far from encouraging interaction with
them, is more likely to give the impression to
passers-by that these are people to be avoided,”
wrote Judge Martha Berzon.

The National Trappers Association does
not have legal standing to try to overturn the
1998 California ballot Proposition 4 ban on
leghold traps and the poisons sodium cyanide and
Compound 1080, ruled U.S. District Judge Thelton
Hender-son during the third week of October 2004.

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China bans eating civets

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 2004:

BEIJING–The Chinese federal health ministry on November 2
banned the slaughter and cooking of civets for human consumption, to
promote “civilized eating habits,” the state-run Beijing Daily
reported.
“The announcement came a week after the government said 70%
of civets tested in the southern province of Guangdong were carrying
the Sudden Acute Respiratory Syndrome virus,” observed Associated
Press.
The October 23 disclosure hinted that civets were not the
source of SARS, as no civets from northern and eastern China were
infected. The Guangdong civets are believed to have been
captive-raised for slaughter, while the civets from northern and
eastern China, where “wild” animals are rarely eaten, were
apparently trapped.
The Chinese ban on eating civets came just under three months
after U.S. Health & Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson announced
a health embargo on the import of either live or dead civets plus
civet parts, such as civet pelts.

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Shooting geese kills Kerry, Voting machines steal greyhound victory in Florida

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 2004:

CLEVELAND–Democratic Party presidential
nominee John Kerry either forgot or took for
granted the 40% of Ohio voters who supported a
failed 1998 ballot initiative that sought to
reinstate a ban on dove hunting. The initiative
was heavily supported by young voters and women.
On October 21, 2004, Kerry in the words
of New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd “cooked
his own goose.”
Wrote Dowd, “In yet another attempt to
prove to George W. Bush that he is man enough to
run this country, John Kerry made an animal
sacrifice to the political gods in a cornfield in
eastern Ohio҆Tromping about in a camouflage
costume and toting a 12-gauge double-barreled
shotgun that shrieked ‘I am not a merlot-loving,
brie-eating, chatelaine-marrying dilettante,’
the Democratic nominee emerged from his shooting
spree with three fellow hunters proclaiming,
‘Everybody got one,’ showing off a hand stained
with goose blood.”

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Iditarod, Yukon Quest racers charged with neglect

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 2004:

WASILA, Alaska–Animal control officers from Mat-Su Borough,
Alaska, on October 16 removed 28 allegedly starving dogs from the
property of three-time Iditarod musher David Straub near Willow and
charged him with 17 counts of cruelty.
Competing in the 2000, 2001, and 2002 runnings of the
Iditarod, Straub in 2002 recorded the fastest time ever for a
last-place finisher.
The Straub dogs were seized three weeks after former Yukon
Quest contender Sigmund Stormo was charged with neglecting 15 dogs on
Kodiak Island. Stormo turned the dogs over to former Iditarod musher
Tim Osmar for care, pending resolution of the case. The same dogs
were impounded on June 11 by the Alaska SPCA, after they were found
without food at Stormo’s home near Soldotna. State police reportedly
found more than 50 marijuana plants, but did not find Stormo, who
was in Kodiak. The Alaska SPCA returned the dogs to Stormo and did
not charge him, after he averred that the dogs were neglected by
someone else who was to look after them in his absence.
The ANIMAL PEOPLE files indicate that no prominent musher has
ever been convicted of neglect while in good standing with racing
associations.

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R.I.P. tahrs of Table Mountain

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 2004:

CAPE TOWN–The last 138 of the Himalayan tahr who inhabited
Table Mountain National Park, overlooking Cape Town, “have been
exterminated by South African National Parks,” Cape Town Adopt-A-Pet
founder Cicely Blumberg e-mailed to ANIMAL PEOPLE on October 26,
2004.
“Park manager Brett Myrdal said that the tahr killing is all
over,” Blumberg added, “because the rangers cannot find any more.
The fact that a funded capture and relocation package was presented
to SANParks in March 2004, to which they agreed in an e-mail to the
Marchig Animal Welfare Trust on March 18, is never mentioned,”
Blumberg continued. “Instead they say that no proposal was ever
received.
“The big story now,” Blumberg said, “is that SANParks have
released klipspringer antelope into the park. They said that the
tahr had to be removed before the klipspringer could be
reintroduced.” Nine klipspringer were released on October 27, with
18 more to follow, along with nine grey rhebuck, also native to
Table Mountain but long ago poached out.

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