From ANIMAL PEOPLE, July/August 2010:
Helping in China
Your April 2010 editorial “How to introduce neuter/return &
make it work” is really informative and useful. I have learnt a lot
from it. Therefore I had it translated into Chinese and have sent it
out to all the Chinese animal groups through the Alliance for Animals
in China, which is nurtured and supported by ACTAsia. Your article
was also distributed to our veterinary practical training program on
companion animal welfare and neutering techniques at the end of July
This is our second year of operating the vet training
program, to help more vets do better and more humane operations in
supporting the neuter/return projects for cats in Shenzhen and
Beijing. This year the Beijing Husbandry & Veterinary Station, under
the Agriculture Bureau of Beijing, was a joint organiser with us.
Besides the vet training, we also ran a session for animal
groups and neuter/return caretakers. I distributed your article to
–Pei Su, founder
ActAsia for Animals
P.O. Box 1264
Tel: +44 20 8123 022
We want t-shirts in dark colors with the main message on the
back that reads: ANIMAL PEOPLE–we are re-defining what it means to
Bluefield, West Virginia
Passion for feral cats
I just wanted to let you know how much my husband and I
appreciate your free Estate Planning for Animal People brochure. It
is the best advice I’ve read on caring for animals with your estate.
Of course everything you do is so well researched and written in
depth. I have learned more about animal groups and what they really
stand for by reading Animal People than anywhere else. Such as what
National Wildlife Federation, Nature Conservancy, and World
Wildlife Fund really stand for (hunters). Please keep up all your
great reporting (you deserve an award!). I also like that you aren’t
afraid to give your opinion too, along with both sides of an issue.
I usually agree with you and learn something new with each edition.
My passion is cat overpopulation and promoting spay/neuter
and neuter/return for ferals. I look forward to the day when cats
will not be killed in shelters (and elsewhere) just because there are
too many. Some day I hope cats will be valued as important and
deserving instead of easily replaceable.
Since I am finally writing to thank you, I have one comment
on your April 2010 editorial “How to introduce neuter/return & make
it work.” You commented on the dilemma that occurs when it is not
safe to return ferals to where they were trapped.
I have found that people are usually happy to take ferals
back after they are fixed. I make clear right from the start that I
cannot help them if they won’t take the cats back. Many people are
very attached to their ferals. Once in a while there is a challenging
situation, but luckily that is rare. So I believe that in most
places neuter/return is the perfect solution. I am very against
killing feral cats just because of having no better answer, but yes
it can be emotionally exhausting to deal with this type of situation.
Kitsap County, Washington
Free video archive
Thanks for all the amazing work you have done for animals!!
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I am often called by news and animal organizations asking for
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FreeAnimalVideo.org provides royalty-free stock video clips
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–Sandra Mohr, founder
Ireland bans hounding deer
The Irish Council Against Blood Sports very much welcomes the
June 29, 2010 passage of legislation in the Dail to outlaw hounding
deer with packs of dogs. For 150 years the Ward Union Hunt has been
terrorising tame red deer, and since 1911 they have been flouting
the law of the land and carrying on an illegal hunt in breach of the
Protection of Animals Act, which states that it is an offence to
terrorise or cause unnecessary suffering to an animal.
We applaud the courage of the Green Party in pushing this
legislation through the Oireachtas in the face of hostility and
derision from all sides of the house.
While we are greatly relieved that this deer hunt has been
banned, respite for these red deer may be short lived, given that
Fine Gael has pledged to repeal the ban and bring back this cruel
abuse, with perhaps the support of Labour, despite the traditional
opposition of many Liberal members of the Dail to cruel sports. It
is our fervent hope that compassion will prevail and that we will
never see this hunt in action again.
We will continue to campaign for the outlawing of other forms
of hunting wild animals with dogs, such as hare coursing, hare
harrying, and fox hunting. We commend our neighbors in Northern
Ireland for banning hare coursing on June 22, 2009.
Unfortunately, environment minister John Gormley has issued
another licence for netting hares here in the Republic. The licence
gives the go-ahead to another season of hare coursing cruelty from
the end of September, with the netting of hares starting on August
14, a fortnight earlier than in previous years.
The continuation of coursing puts even more pressure on our
beleaguered hare population, which continues to be identified as a
species under threat. In a submission to the Convention on
Biological Diversity last May, the National Parks & Wildlife Service
stated that the Irish Hare is “experiencing pressure from loss of
suitable habitat and hunting and consequently its status is
Last season, as in every other season of coursing, hares
continued to be terrorised, stressed, injured and killed, as
revealed in monitoring reports obtained from the National Parks &
Wildlife Service under our Freedom of Information Act.
Minister Gormley made history by outlawing the Ward Union
carted deer hunt, and he is to be commended for this brave stand. We
appeal to him to now follow the example of Northern Ireland and the
British mainland and urgently bring hare coursing to an end.
Against Blood Sports
PO Box 88, Mullingar
County Westmeath, Ireland
Meat is not served at truly humane events
United Poultry Concerns recently learned that we are
represented in James LaVeck’s video Silencing the Lambs as supporting
a fundraiser for Ohioans for Humane Farms at which animals were on
We have been asked to clarify whether UPC supported or
attended this fundraiser or sent out invitations to it. The answer
is no, no, no!
UPC promotes a vegan diet. Not only do we not serve animal
products at our own events; we do not participate in fundraisers for
animals that put animals on food plates!
UPC signed on to the Ohioans for Humane Farms ballot measure
because we support legislation with the potential to reduce the
suffering of chickens and other animals who have no hope of escaping
their fate except in death. UPC supported California’s Proposition 2
for the same reason, albeit with ambivalence in both cases.
UPC also supports imposing a measure of responsibility on
corporations that own animals rather than letting them do whatever
they please with total impunity.
However, UPC would never support or have been part of any
“humane” event that served slaughtered animals as bait to win favor
and money and “friends.”
Had UPC been advised of this fundraiser beforehand, we would
have withdrawn from the Ohio coalition, which is no longer a ballot
initiative alliance anyway, thanks to the Ohio Compromise.
–Karen Davis, founder
United Poultry Concerns
PO Box 150
Machipongo, VA 23405
Serengeti National Park in Tanzania is undoubtedly the
best-known wildlife sanctuary in the world. The Serengeti plains are
famous because of a distinct seasonal pattern of grass growth. Each
year more than 1.2 million wildebeest and 800,000 zebra migrate
around the Serengeti, and the adjacent but much smaller Maasai Mara
National Park in southern Kenya.
The Government of Tanzania has given the go-ahead for a
40-mile super highway to be constructed right across Serengeti
National Park. This will heavily interfere with the Serengeti
ecosystem and threaten the very existence of the wildebeest and zebra
migration route. High-speed traffic will kill many animals, and
the road will provide easy access for poachers.
Working with our partners in Tanzania, the Africa Network
for Animal Welfare hopes to sensitize the grassroots communities in
Tanzania and Kenya who will be affected by the loss of the Serengeti
ecosystem to reject the construction of the proposed highway. We are
petitioning the Kenyan Government and the East Africa Community to
demand an environmental impact assessment on the proposed highway,
since it is a cross-border issue. We are asking the Tanzanian
government to considers an alternate route that goes south of the
Serengeti, and would benefit more people.
–Josphat Ngonyo, director
for Animal Welfare
P.O. Box 3731-00506
Phone: +254 20 606 510
Fax: +254 20 609 691
The United Nations Environmental Program reported in July
2010 that Serengeti National Park and the Maasai Mara lost 59% of
their large mammals between 1975 and 2005, including lions,
elephants, buffalo, leopards, and rhinos.
Reported Gatonye Gathura of The Nation, in Nairobi, “This
confirms an earlier count carried out by Dr Joseph Ogutu, formerly a
statistical ecologist at the Nairobi based International Livestock
Research Institute, who claimed losses at the Maasai Mara were as
high as 95% for giraffes, 80% for warthogs, 76% for hartebeest and
67% for impala.” These losses in turn are causing steep declines in
the numbers of lions, cheetahs, leopards, hyenas, and African
wild dogs. Commented the London Zoological Society, “The situation
[for wildlife population numbers] outside the parks is almost
The addition of a four-lane highway bifurcating the Serengeti
can only accelerate the wildlife losses.
Indus River turtles
Freshwater turtles in Pakistan are being massacred for
illegal export. Sources in Pakistan Customs say the black market in
turtles earns the smugglers more than five billion rupees. More than
200,000 kilograms of turtles are transported each year to other
nations. Dried turtle parts are also sold in Lahore and Karachi.
Details provided by the Pakistan Wetland Programme within the
Ministry of Environment show that 50 to 100 turtles are killed every
day by the hunters in the Indus River and tributaries. But since
April 2010, when more than 1,000 turtles were found dead along the
Indus River downstream from Sukkur, the turtle catch has declined by
The Punjab Wildlife Department’s nonchalant response to this
crisis proves them unworthy custodians of wildlife. If nothing else,
the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act should be enough to put a
stop to this.
Turtles are among of the oldest continuing species on this
planet, representing over 200 million years of evolutionary history.
Their population should be protected and valued as a national natural
Please write polite letters to the Director General of the
Punjab Wildlife Department, and demand that this senseless violence
come to an end immediately, that the perpetrators be arrested and
fined, and the relevant departments be made to carry out their
mandates. His address is: Muhammad Ayub Tariq, Director General,
Punjab Wildlife and Parks Department, 2-Sanda Road, Lahore,
–Khalid Mahmood Qurashi, President
Animal Save Movement Pakistan
H#1094/2, Hussain Agahi
Multan 60000, Pakistan
Qurashi wrote just before the Pakistan floods began.
Economic desperation resulting from the flooding is likely to
intensify the hunting pressure on Indus River turtles, many of whom
may be stranded as high water recedes.
“No such thing as a responsible breeder”
Your May 2010 editiorial feature “Rethinking Adoption
Screening in the Computer Age” presented a great deal of interesting
information about what works and what doesn’t work as adoption
criteria, as shelters and rescuers attempt to increase adoptions
while reducing adoption failures, without being overly aggressive in
the screening process. For anyone, adoption screening is a bit of
an art form. Some screeners have the knack of it, and many don’t.
It takes a nose and some basic instincts. Even with this, mistakes
can be made and the animal is sadly returned to be recycled.
We all know that pounds and shelters are overloaded and under
stress but we rarely talk about the root of the problem: too many
animals and not enough homes! The pet industry is huge and out of
control. Until this situation changes and there is a value placed on
each and every animal, I would suggest that there is no such thing
as a responsible breeder.