13 nations miss the European Union deadline for phasing out battery cages

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  January/February 2012:

BRUSSELS,  DUBLIN–Allowed 13 years to phase out battery caging for laying hens,  egg farmers in 13 European Union nations nonetheless missed the January 1,  2012 deadline for compliance with the 1999 EU battery cage ban.

In Ireland,  where farmers were mostly compliant,  “the Irish Farmers Association reported to the media that up to 100,000 birds would have to be slaughtered ‘early,’ as 10 farmers did not have the required cages to comply with new legislation,”  e-mailed Vegan Education Centre of Ireland diet and lifestyle coach Sandra Higgins to the U.S.-based organization United Poultry Concerns. Read more

Dutch ritual slaughter ban referred for study

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  January/February 2012:

DEN HAAG, The Netherlands— A proposed ban on slaughtering
animals without pre-stunning that cleared the Dutch House of
Representatives 116-30 in June 2011 was on December 20,  2011 amended
in the Senate into a pledge that undersecretary for agriculture Henk
Bleker’s office will draft standards to ensure that halal and kosher
slaughter,  practiced by Muslims and Jews,  are done in a manner that
minimizes animal suffering.  Pre-stunning has traditionally been
interpreted by most Judaic and Islamic religious  authorities–though
some differ–as a violation of the requirements of Mosaic and Islamic
religious law that animals be conscious when their throats are
swiftly cut with a sharp blade.

Proposed by the Party for the Animals,  which holds two seats
in the House and one in the Senate,  and is a part of the coalition
government,  the ban on slaughter without pre-stunning gained
momentum after being endorsed by the far right Party for Freedom,
whose focal issue is discouraging Islamic immigration.  About one
million of the Dutch population of 16 million are immigrants from
Islamic nations.

Ukrainian government agrees to a six-month moratorium on animal control killing

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  November/December 2011:


KYIV,  KHARKOV“Let us stop the deaths of poor stray dogs
for half a year and build shelters together,”  Ukrainian environment
minister Mykola Zlochevsky told media on November 17,  2011.
“This is a fantastic victory for Ukraine,  its citizens,  and
its animals,”  declared John Ruane,  director of the British
organization Naturewatch.  Ruane had for two years organized an
international campaign in support of Ukrainian animal advocates’
efforts to reform animal control. Read more

Romanian activists are wary of newly passed U.S.-style animal control law

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  November/December 2011:


BUCHAREST--Romanian animal advocates fear that a new national
animal control law ratified on November 22,  2011 by the national
Chamber of Deputies will initiate dog population control killing at a
pace unseen since then-Bucharest mayor Traian Basescu in April 2001
unleashed the most notorious dog pogram since the fall of Communism.
Basescu has since 2004 been president of Romania,  elected in
part because the 2001 dog killing helped to establish his reputation
for enforcing law-and-order.  The Chamber of Deputies is dominated by
the Democratic Liberal Party,  of which Basescu is a founder.  The
Democratic Liberal Party collected half a million petition signatures
in support of the new animal control law before bringing it to a
final vote. Read more

Wim De Kok to head new U.S. Vier Pfoten office

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  October 2011:


VIENNA-Helmut Dungler,  chief executive of the Austrian-headquartered international animal welfare charity Vier Pfoten (Four Paws),  on September 26,  2011 announced that Vier Pfoten is soon to open a U.S. office in Boston,  under Wim De Kok. De Kok in 1982 cofounded the Dutch antifur society Bont Voor Dieren (Fur is for Animals) as the Anti-Bont Comite.  It took the present name in 1988. Read more

Horse whipping

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  October 2011:

LONDON--The British Horseracing Authority on September 27,  2011 ruled,  after a 10-month review of whipping rules,  that jockeys who whip a horse more than seven times in a flat race,  more than eight times in a jumping race,  or more than five times down the home stretch,  will after October 10,  2011 be suspended for at least five days and forfeit their riding fees plus prize money (if any).  The rule change came three weeks after University of Sydney professors Paul McGreevy,  David Evans,  Andrew McLean,  and Bidda Jones won the Australian Museum Eureka Prize for scientific research that contributes to animal protection by showing that race horses run faster when they are not whipped.

European Parliament adopts dog protocol, but backs away from farm animal welfare

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  October 2011:

BRUSSELS–The European Parlia-ment on October 13,  2011 ratified a Written Declaration on Dog Population Management in the European Union which “calls on Member States to adopt comprehensive dog population management strategies,”  to “include measures such as dog control and anti-cruelty laws,  support for veterinary procedures including rabies vaccination and sterilization as necessary to control the number of unwanted dogs,  and the promotion of responsible pet ownership.” Read more

Badger cull to begin in 2012

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  September 2011:

LONDON--British environment secretary Caroline Spelman is expected to finalize plans before the close of 2011 to license dairy farmers to shoot badgers to control the spread of bovine tuberculosis.

According to a draft strategy released to media in July 2011, the cull would begin in 2012 in two trial areas,  believed to be in Devon and Gloucestershire,  though Spel-man told media that she was undecided about where the sites would be.  After the initial trial, culling would proceed more aggressively for at least four years beginning in 2013. Read more

Wolf hunting is suspended in Sweden under EU pressure, but resumes in Montana and Idaho

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  September 2011:

MISSOULA,  BOISE,  STOCKHOLM–Facing possible legal action by the European Union,  Swedish environment minister Andreas Carlgren on August 16,  2011 halted wolf hunting,  eight months after wolves were legally hunted in Sweden for the first time since 1966.

But a year-long reprieve from hunting ended on August 25 for wolves in Montana and Idaho,  after the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a request for an emergency injunction sought by the Alliance for the Wild Rockies,  Friends of the Clearwater,  and WildEarth Guardians.  The injunction would have kept wolves under federal Endangered Species Act coverage pending the outcome of an appeal contesting the constitutionality of the April 2011 federal budget rider that removed them from protection in the northern Rockies. Read more

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