Ricky Gervais awarded for animal protection advocacy
Animal Defenders International (ADI)has presented multi-talented comedian Ricky Gervaiswith the prestigious Lord Houghton Award for his high-profile advocacy on animal protection issues, creating awareness in a unique wayto worldwide audiences.
ADI President Jan Creamer said: “Ricky Gervais is an outstanding and outspoken campaigner for animals who has raised animal protection issues with new and growing audiences. This award is in recognition of the longstanding and passionate role Ricky plays in giving animals a loud and powerful voice.”
On receiving the award, Ricky Gervais said: “I am honoured to receive the Lord Houghton Award for a cause so close to my heart. The suffering of animals absolutely sickens me and I will continue to speak out and support the sterling work of organisations like Animal Defenders International.”
Ricky is currently on tour with his ‘Humanity’ show, and has been a supporter of ADI for many years, being one of the first to champion their ‘Stop Circus Suffering’ campaign. While at XFM in the late 1990s, Ricky spoke out against the horrific abuse of elephants, a baby chimpanzee and others documented by ADI at animal trainer Mary Chipperfield Promotions, which resulted in cruelty convictions for the owners and their elephant keeper. Ricky has continued to be an outspoken advocate for the campaign, urging governments in both the UK and US to introduce legislation to prohibit travelling wild animal acts.
The shocking violence inflicted on Anne the elephant at Bobby Roberts Super Circus in 2011 and exposed by ADI “graphically displays why the government should ban wild animals in circuses” Ricky said, continuing “I am appalled that wild animals are still kept in circuses and fully support the call for a ban. It is high time that government got on and implemented one.”ADI’s evidence led to agovernment commitment to ban and a cruelty conviction for Anne’s owner – yet five years later, the government’s bill has still not been presented to Parliament.
The comedian, writer and producer, who has over 12 million twitter followers is an outspoken advocate on several animal issues including trophy hunting, blood sports and animal experiments.
Last year, supporting proposals to uplist the African lion to Appendix I (greatest protection) at the CITES conference in Johannesburg,Ricky said "The survival of the African lion hangs in the balance. We must stop blood-thirsty hunters from decimating our wildlife for a barbaric adrenaline rush or trophy piece to show off to their mates.” Sadly, fierce opposition from lion bone/body part traders fought off lion protection this time, but the campaign continues.
The Lord Houghton Award was initiated in 1980 as a lasting recognition of the significant contribution made by Lord Houghton to the animal welfare movement. During his long parliamentary career, he was a passionate animal welfare advocate, actively campaigning for changes in legislation to bring about improvements in animal welfare, even into his nineties.
Each year one of the four participating organizations – Animal Defenders International, OneKind, Cruelty Free International and League Against Cruel Sports – selects the recipient of the award.
In 2012 ADI presented the award to legendary multi-Emmy award winning TV host Bob Barker – an ardent public advocate for animals who, among other achievements, had ended each episode of his iconic show ‘The Price is Right’ with a plea to his audience to spay and neuter their pets.
This presentation of the 2016 Lord Houghton Award to Ricky was delayed for the completion of a record-breaking 18-month rescue mission in South America. ADI rescued over 100 wild animals from circuses and the illegal wildlife trade in a mission to assist the governments of Peru and Colombia with enforcement of their new laws ending the use of wild animals in circuses. Native wildlife such as bears, monkeys, birds and others were rehomed in Amazon sanctuaries, a tiger to a sanctuary in Florida and 33 Africa lions were rehomed to their native Africa.
“Sharon Ward Keeble has, in this great collection of stories, managed to capture the unconditional devotion that dogs continue to give to us all despite an often harsh beginning in life.”
--War Paws Charity
My Rescue Dog Rescued Me
Amazing True Stories of Adopted Canine Heroes
By Sharon Ward Keeble
A dog’s breeding and background matter so much less than many people believe. All too often, shelter dogs are dismissed as adoption options because they are “damaged” or “risky.” But inside every dog, no matter where it comes from, is the potential for a loyal, loving, and brave companion. No collection of stories demonstrates that more than those in My Rescue Dog Rescued Me (Skyhorse Publishing, April 2017).
In this inspiring little book, author Sharon Ward Keeble will introduce readers to the incredible dogs who went from being shelter rescues to becoming rescuers in these incredible true stories:
• Toby, the golden retriever who performed the Heimlich maneuver to save his owner’s life
• Liam, the Lhasa Apso-Poodle mix who helped his owner battle an eating disorder
• Hercules, the St. Bernard who saved his owners from burglars on the first day he moved in
• Alfie, the terrier who gave a bullied girl a new lease on life
• And many more!
These canine heroes came to their owner’s aid in their times of greatest need—whether it was saving them from physical
Skyhorse Publishing, Inc.
307 West 36th Street, 11th Floor
New York, NY 10018
threats or helping them to recover from mental illness, PTSD, and bereavement. Let these uplifting
stories warm your heart, and show you that adopted dogs truly are man’s best friend.
My Rescue Dog Rescued Me is a book that will be difficult to put down without first making a trip
to the closest animal shelter.
About the Author
Sharon Ward Keeble is a journalist with more than twenty years’ experience of national reporting for
major women’s magazines and newspapers in the United Kingdom and United States, including Closer,
Bella, and the Sunday Mirror. She is the author of China: Passport to Adventure and coauthor of The Horse
Girl. She is based in Florida.
More Praise for My Rescue Dog Rescued Me
“An absolute must-read for anyone who’s known the incomparable love of a rescue dog, or
would like to.”
“[We] commend this book for sharing some wonderful stories of how rescuing a dog from a
shelter can transform not only the life of the dog but also the lives of those who adopt
—Soi Dog Foundation
“This book has character and heart . . . a must-read for dog lovers, but also for anyone
whose life has been touched by an animal, and knows the comfort and joy they can bring.”
—Take a Break magazine
My Rescue Dog Rescued Me
Amazing True Stories of Adopted Canine Heroes
By Sharon Ward Keeble
Skyhorse Publishing hardcover, also available as an
On Sale: April 11, 2017
ISBN: 978-1-5107-1737-4 ǀ $17.99
“Did You Feed The Dog?” is The Perfect
Solution to that Important Question!
As pet parents, it is our responsibility to make sure that
our pets are cared for properly with the right food, a
comfortable sleeping place and lots of love. And, of
course, feeding our pets is one of the most important
tasks we must tend to each morning and evening. But,
sometimes, in a home with more than two people, you
just don’t know if your dog has been fed! If asked,
dogs will lie! And that’s where the brilliance of Did You
Feed The Dog comes into play.
What is Did You Feed The Dog?
Did you Feed The Dog is a device that is simple to use and acts as a reminder to everyone in the
household that your dog has been fed. Built with high ABS plastic and a stylish brushed metal
appearance, Did You Feed the Dog has each day of the week and the heading, “A.M.” and “P.M.”. You
simply move the slider the right to show you have fed the dog that morning or night.
No batteries or training are required and you can mount it anywhere. At the end of each week, you
simply push the sliders to the left and start over.
Did You Feed The Dog is a great way to teach kids responsibility
AND not over-feed your dogs
When feeding your dog, it is usually the parents that take care of
the actual task. When your younger kids see you feeding the dog
and switching the sliders, most kids want to participate. It’s a
great way to teach your kids how to be responsible and most
kids feel proud to switch the slider to the right. Did You Feed
The Dog can also help with over-feeding and obesity in dogs.
The last thing you want to do is feed your dog three times a
Did You Feed The Dog is appealing in its simplicity
The actual device is attractive and will blend in to your
home easily. The product dimensions are 4-3/8" w x
6" h x 5/8" d with two mounting options included: two
pieces of sticky foam tape and two pieces of sticky
magnetic material. You can mount it on your
washer/dryer, kitchen wall or anywhere you like. With a price of
$9.95, you have to try this stylish yet smart device.
Did You Feed The Dog can also be used if you have more than one dog.
If you have more than one dog, you invariably feed your dogs at the same time each day. You can
either have one device per dog or just make sure that everyone in the family knows that you push the
sliders to the right after ALL dogs are fed! It is also ideal when Pet Sitters or House Sitters are involved.
There are so many reasons to buy this handy device for your home. It’s simple, sleek and is a great
solution to assure that your dogs are fed twice each day (and not over-fed either!). At a price of $9.95,
it’s a must have. Go to http://didyoufeedthedog.co and purchase one today. You and your dog will be
happy you did!
# # #
Morro Bay, CA, March 28, 2017 - There's an abundance of pure unadulterated cuteness going on from the recent increase in California Sea Otter families living in Morro Bay. Mommas and babies are everywhere eating and grooming each other as if no one is watching. But we are and we can't look away - they are so dang cute! Now is the perfect time to catch a glimpse of these sea creatures in their natural habitat since Morro Bay harbor is experiencing the highest count to date of these adorable critters. A survey taken last May of the Morro Bay harbor documented 36 adult sea otters and nine pups, a significantly higher number than the typical five or fewer otters frequenting the harbor in the early 2000s.
"Large gatherings of otters throughout the harbor have attracted tourists and locals all along the waterfront to experience them in their natural habitat," explains Jennifer Little, Executive Director of Discover Morro Bay. "You can watch along the shore or rent paddleboards and watch from a safe distance on the water as they forage for food and groom their young. They use rocks and other tools to break open crab and local food sources and are so fun to watch. We've seen up to 30 - 40 of them at a time floating around on their backs and enjoying life in Morro Bay."
Just plop down a beach chair along the Morro Bay Harbor Walk and start watching - they're everywhere and easy to find. If there isn't a family of otters hanging out already, they will soon appear. The southeast side of Morro Rock is a great landmark for sea otter viewing as is Coleman beach at the intersection of Embarcadero and Coleman Drive. There are also public viewing spots all along the Embarcadero for wildlife viewing in between the plethora of restaurants, boutique shops and wine bars. To get an even closer look, paddle out in a kayak or rent a boat at Bay Cruisers and Electric Boats. Visitors can also take a ride on the Lost Isle Tiki boat to see the otters and the ever-barking sea lions, which includes a quick detour to the Morro Bay natural sand spit. Kayaks can be rented at Kayak Horizons and the Kayak Shack.
Otter Population Growth
Over the past three years, the average count of sea otters in the California range hit 3,272. This is the first time that the index, which started in 1982, has exceeded 3,090, the threshold suggested by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to determine whether the species should be delisted under the Endangered Species Act. The threshold would need to be surpassed for at least three consecutive years before the species is considered for delisting. The index hovered in the 2,800 only one decade ago.
Experts say what's really driving the population increase is the abundance of food they find in the waters of Morro Bay. Sea otters are integral to the health of the Morro Bay harbor environment. When viewing otters be very careful as they are wild animals and may react poorly if approached. When viewing from the water, it's best to stay at least five kayak lengths away at all times and enjoy them in a responsible manner.
Find Spring Lodging Specials, Activity Rental Discounts and Amgen VIP Packages
Morro Bay currently has an abundance of spring lodging specials and up to $130 in discounts off outdoor activity rentals. Surf, Kayak and sail for less when you stay in Morro Bay through April. Also, find VIP Amgen packages and get FREE Amgen swag when you book a room for Amgen Tour of California finish on May 16 in Morro Bay. For information on all the exciting things to do and see in Morro Bay, visit www.morrobay.org.
Get out on the open road and visit Morro Bay, CA on Highway 1 in San Luis Obispo County, just minutes from Hearst Castle and teeming with California Sea Otters. A true gem, this seaside fishing village with bustling waterfront offers a picture perfect getaway for travelers who seek food, wine and outdoor adventures found in a gorgeous natural setting. Morro Bay's coastal climate is perfect for the abundance of year-round outdoor activities found in this unspoiled slice of California. Recently recognized in as her home in Finding Dory, Morro Bay was named as a Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists, and outdoor activities are a way of life. From ocean-side golf, kayaking, sailing, hiking, fishing, surfing, biking, and bird watching, to kite flying, shopping, dining, wine bars, local craft brews and miles of unspoiled beaches, there is something for everyone. Located along coastal Highway 1 in midway between Los Angeles and San Francisco, Morro Bay is easily accessible from northern CA via Highway 101 South to Highway 46 West or Highway 41 West.
The Public Safety and Wildlife Protection Act comes after child gets caught in Conibear trap
Washington, D.C., March 21, 2017 -- Today, Born Free USA announced its support for the reintroduction this week of the Public Safety and Wildlife Protection Act (H.R. 1629) in the U.S. House of Representatives by Congresswoman Alma S. Adams (D-NC) and Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-NY). This important bill would ban the import, export, and interstate commerce of steel-jaw leghold traps and Conibear body-gripping traps. It comes as a result of a 2015 accident in North Carolina, in which a 12-year-old boy got his arm caught in a Conibear trap set near a neighborhood pond. It took six doctors several hours to free him from the trap.
According to Jennifer Place, Program Associate for Born Free USA, “We applaud and thank Congresswoman Adams and Congresswoman Lowey for their leadership on this legislation and urge its swift passage. Steel-jaw leghold traps and Conibear traps are archaic, indiscriminate, and horrific in their brutality. When triggered, they slam shut on their victims with bone-crushing force, causing massive pain and suffering not only to targeted wild animals, but also to endangered species, people’s pets, and children.”
Congresswoman Alma S. Adams said, “We can no longer afford to disregard the dangerous effects that antiquated body-gripping traps have on wildlife, pets, and people. These violent traps negatively impact our ecosystem and pose unnecessary risks to humans, especially young children. I am proud to introduce this important piece of legislation with my colleague, Congresswoman Nita Lowey, to protect our wildlife and our communities.”
“It is time to make dangerous body-gripping traps a thing of the past,” Congresswoman Lowey said. “These archaic, indiscriminately violent devices pose a serious threat to wild animals, pets, and people, and they must be banned in the United States. I am proud to stand with Congresswoman Adams in the fight to protect our ecosystems and our communities from these cruel and unnecessary traps.”
Although Conibear and leghold traps are legal in North Carolina, their use is severely restricted or prohibited in several states. While the Public Safety and Wildlife Protection Act would not alter any state’s own policies on trapping, it would ensure that these two notoriously dangerous traps do not cross state lines, especially into states with bans already in place.
“Last month, a young man injured his arm in a Conibear trap illegally set near a playground in Chesterton, Indiana,” Place added. “It is clear that these traps not only endanger wildlife, but also compromise public safety. The Public Safety and Wildlife Protection Act will ensure that animals and people are able to enjoy our magnificent outdoor spaces without the risk of being caught—and possibly killed—in an indiscriminate and painful trap.”
Born Free USA encourages other members of Congress to join Representatives Adams and Lowey in support of H.R. 1629.
Born Free USA is a global leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation. Through litigation, legislation, and public education, Born Free USA leads vital campaigns against animals in entertainment, exotic "pets," trapping and fur, and the destructive international wildlife trade. Born Free USA brings to America the message of "compassionate conservation": the vision of the U.K.-based Born Free Foundation, established in 1984 by Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna, stars of the iconic film Born Free, along with their son, Will Travers. Born Free's mission is to end suffering of wild animals in captivity, conserve threatened and endangered species, and encourage compassionate conservation globally. More at www.bornfreeusa.org, www.twitter.com/bornfreeusa, and www.facebook.com/bornfreeusa.
GoPure Pet™ Provides Pure Water for Your Pet All Day, Every Day
Ensues healthy hydration, keeps bowl clean and water fresh for pets
Wilton, CT (January 5, 2017) – Bloc Enterprises, LLC – makers of the first-ever portable and continuous, personal water enhancement device, the GoPure Pod™ – is proud to announce the launch of their companion product, GoPure Pet™. Attaching to the bottom of most water bowls, GoPure Pet features the revolutionary technology of the GoPure Pod to continuously purify and enhance tap water ensuring it is clean, healthy, and great tasting for your pet, all day, everyday.
At the heart of the GoPure Pet is GoPure Pod’s PuriBloc™ – an advanced, highly porous ceramic that constantly cleans tap water for peace of mind and taste satisfaction. Through PuriBloc’s technology, the GoPure Pod adsorbs the most dangerous contaminants now commonly found in tap water across the country such as Chlorine, Fluoride, Arsenic Chromium, Lead and Mercury. Additionally, the GoPure Pod balances pH levels and releases valuable trace minerals so your pets’ water tastes better, retains its freshness all day long and keeps pet bowls clean.
“The most important thing you can do to keep your dog or cat healthy is to have them drink plenty of fresh, clean water,” says Earth Animal DVM and founder Robert Goldstein, who specializes in animal nutrition. “GoPure Pet is the first product we’ve seen that enhances water from any tap water source and keeps it cleaner and great tasting throughout the day. The peace of mind that comes with knowing you’re enhancing this most essential ingredient for your pet’s health is invaluable.”
The GoPure Pet’s protective shell safely attaches to the bottom of most bowls via two high-strength suction cups, eliminating the chance of pets swallowing or chewing on the pod while drinking. One reusable GoPure Pet lasts up to six months and can treat up to 264 gallons of water. Once the GoPure pod has reached its lifespan, it’s easily replaced in the same GoPure Pet shell.
GoPure Pet retails for $29.95 is now available for purchase at www.gopurepod.com and select retailers across the country including Camping World and Bentley’s.
About Bloc Enterprises, LLC
Bloc Enterprises, LLC is a specialized wholesale distribution company with exclusive distribution rights in the United States and United Kingdom for two remarkable new consumer healthcare products. For more information visit:
PuriBloc is the patented water enhancement technology inside the GoPure™, a thumb-sized pod made from natural ingredients that removes chemical impurities, while improving the taste. Soluble impurities and the many other contaminants found in ordinary tap water are adsorbed, the water is re-mineralized and the pH is optimized for healthier water. PuriBloc keeps water tasting fresher for longer and is designed to work continuously in any water container such as pitcher, coffee maker, pet bowl or water bottle. For more information,click here.
NicoBloc is a natural, drug-free fluid applied to the filter-end of a cigarette that
blocks up to 99% of tar and nicotine without change in taste or loss of satisfaction. This patented method has proven success rates of over 50% in helping smokers quit after many years of clinical trials and global market testing. NicoBloc is made from 100% natural ingredients and is drug-free so there are no side effects from its use. These unique attributes make NicoBloc the only product of its kind. For more information, click here.
Washington, D.C., March 9, 2017 -- Today, Born Free USA, a global leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation, announced support for the reintroduction of the Refuge from Cruel Trapping Act (H.R. 1438) in the U.S. House of Representatives by Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-NY). This bill would ban the use or possession of body-gripping animal traps including snares, Conibear traps, and steel-jaw leghold traps within the National Wildlife Refuge System.
According to Adam M. Roberts, CEO of Born Free USA, “The mission of the National Wildlife Refuge System is clear: to be an inviolate sanctuary for our native wildlife. Dangerous, indiscriminate body-gripping traps simply have no place on these federal protected lands. The brutality of these traps cannot be overstated. Steel-jaw leghold traps and Conibear traps slam shut with bone-crushing force, causing massive injury and trauma. Animals trapped in strangulation neck snares—designed to tighten around an animal’s neck as he or she struggles—also suffer in extreme agony for an unconscionable amount of time. Born Free USA commends Congresswoman Lowey for leading the effort to end this cruelty and urges swift passage of the legislation to ensure that national wildlife refuges are safe havens for wildlife.”
“We must restore the true meaning of ‘refuge’ to the National Wildlife Refuge System,” said Congresswoman Lowey. “This critical legislation will ban indiscriminate body-gripping traps on public land, which not only endanger wild animals but also the millions of visitors who enjoy our nation’s 566 refuges each year. These violent devices are simply not worth the devastation of even one accident. It is past time we ensure the entire National Wildlife Refuge System remains safe for animals and families alike.”
The National Wildlife Refuge System encompasses the most comprehensive and diverse collection of fish and wildlife habitats in the world, and provides a home for more than 380 endangered species. Overall, the National Wildlife Refuge System harbors species of more than 700 birds, 220 mammals, 250 reptiles and amphibians, and 1,000 fish. Despite its mission “to administer a national network of lands and waters for the conservation, management, and where appropriate, restoration of the fish, wildlife, and plant resources and their habitats within the United States for the benefit of present and future generations of Americans,” more than half of all national wildlife refuges allow trapping on refuge grounds.
“More than 100 other countries have either severely restricted or outright banned the use of steel-jaw leghold traps. It is inexcusable to allow these and other cruel traps on land specifically set aside to be safe havens for wildlife. Additionally, the millions of people who visit national wildlife refuges every year with their families and companion animals should be able to enjoy American refuges without the fear of stepping into a cruel, hidden trap and getting injured or killed.” Roberts added.
Born Free USA urges other members of Congress to join Congresswoman Lowey in support of H.R. 1438.
Born Free USA is a global leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation. Through litigation, legislation, and public education, the organization leads vital campaigns against animals in entertainment, exotic “pets,” trapping and fur, and the destructive international wildlife trade. Born Free USA brings to North America the message of “compassionate conservation”—the vision of the United Kingdom-based Born Free Foundation, established in 1984 by Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna, stars of the iconic film Born Free, along with their son, Will Travers. Born Free USA’s mission is to end suffering of wild animals in captivity, conserve threatened and endangered species, and encourage compassionate conservation globally. More at www.bornfreeusa.org, www.twitter.com/bornfreeusa, and www.facebook.com/bornfreeusa.
Donations to support injured and orphaned wildlife
Washington, D.C., March 2, 2017 -- Today, Born Free USA, a global leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation, announced the completion of its third annual Born Free USA Fur for the Animals campaign. The four-month donation drive collected 1,615 fur items from around the world to distribute to U.S. wildlife rehabilitation centers and sanctuaries, where they will be used to bring familiar warmth, comfort, and enrichment to orphaned, injured, and rescued wildlife.
The number of fur donations quadrupled from last year’s total. This year’s donations are valued at an estimated $3.7 million and represent approximately 53,000 animals who died for these products. While donations included the more common mink, rabbit, and fox coats and accessories, Born Free USA also received several vintage items made from imperiled and threatened species. Such items include a coat, hat, and muff made from Geoffroy’s cat (a small wild cat species found in South America), two Canada lynx pelts tagged by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), and one CITES-tagged gray wolf pelt. Other noteworthy items include coats made from bobcat, otter, seal, and beaver.
According to Adam M. Roberts, CEO of Born Free USA, “We are proud of the success of the Fur for the Animals initiative. Hundreds of items arrived at our office each week, and it is clear that this campaign is fulfilling an important need as the public becomes increasingly aware that any fur items are the result of misery and cruel death for millions of animals. Fur for the Animals allows people to give up their fur in a profound and satisfying way, repurposing these garments with positive effect: for animals.”
“All of the items are going to wildlife rehabilitation centers or sanctuaries, but Born Free USA—in consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service—will keep the vintage imperiled species items in order to raise awareness about the destructive and despicable international wildlife trade. Some of these species partially owe their vulnerable status to the demand for their parts and commercial products made from them,” Roberts explains.
Born Free USA is sending fur to wildlife rehabilitation centers across the country, including the following campaign partners:
- Noah’s Ark Animal Sanctuary, Locust Grove, Georgia
- Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation, Kendalia, Texas
- The Fund for Animals Wildlife Center, Ramona, California
- Mississippi Wildlife Rehabilitation, Inc., Lake Cormorant, Mississippi
- Wet Mountain Wildlife Rehabilitation, Inc., Westcliffe, Colorado
- Thunder Eagle Wildlife, McKenney, Virginia
Born Free USA commends the growing number of fashion retailers vowing to go fur free. In March 2016, the luxury brand Giorgio Armani announced it will remove real animal fur from its collections beginning with its Fall/Winter 2016 line. Armani is joining such brands as Hugo Boss, American Apparel, Esprit, H&M, Steve Madden, Marks & Spencer, and Topshop, among others that have pledged to produce only fur free merchandise.
Born Free USA is a member of the Fur Free Alliance: an international coalition of animal protection organizations working to bring an end to the exploitation and killing of animals for their fur. The Fur Free Alliance represents more than 40 animal protection organizations in 28 countries and millions of supporters worldwide.
Born Free USA is a global leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation. Through litigation, legislation, and public education, Born Free USA leads vital campaigns against animals in entertainment, exotic “pets,” trapping and fur, and the destructive international wildlife trade. Born Free USA brings to North America the message of “compassionate conservation”—the vision of the United Kingdom-based Born Free Foundation, established in 1984 by Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna, stars of the iconic film Born Free, along with their son, Will Travers. Born Free USA’s mission is to end suffering of wild animals in captivity, conserve threatened and endangered species, and encourage compassionate conservation globally. More at www.bornfreeusa.org, www.twitter.com/bornfreeusa, and www.facebook.com/bornfreeusa.
“An honest and engaging portrayal of her journey from dog lover to dedicated shelter volunteer. [Sutherland] seamlessly interweaves a narrative of the dogs she has loved over the years—warts and all. Reader, beware: you may find yourself falling in love with each one too.”
— Booklist, starred review
“[Sutherland’s] understanding of shelter dogs—she writes that they are not so much homeless as humanless—shines through on every page....An inside look at the experiences of shelter dogs that is sure to appeal to dog and animal lovers.”
— Kirkus Reviews
RESCUING PENNY JANE
One Shelter Volunteer, Countless Dogs,
and the Quest to Find Them All Homes
By Amy Sutherland
What shelter dogs need is obvious – homes. But how do we find all those homes? That question sends best-selling writer and shelter volunteer Amy Sutherland looking for answers in her own experiences and beyond. The result is RESCUING PENNY JANE: One Shelter Volunteer, Countless Dogs, and the Quest to Find Them All Homes (Harper; on sale February 21, 2017; $26.99), an inspiring, fascinating trip through the world of homeless dogs and the people who work so hard to save them.
A longtime shelter volunteer, Sutherland essentially lets the dogs she’s known do the talking because in their stories she finds so many answers. There’s Gwen Stefani, a ball-crazy pit bull mix who can’t find a family; Rugby, an abandoned puppy with crippled front legs, and Brody, a young German Shepherd who likes to mouth people, among many others. Readers will also meet the author’s own dogs—Penny Jane, a skittish stray from a Maine farm, and Walter Joe, a luckless terrier from a hoarder’s house—as well as Sido, the sheltie-mix who inspired the no-kill movement, and Sadie the Civil War dog who braved Gettysburg. Traveling across the country, Sutherland draws further solutions and inspiration from the experiences and stories of shelter workers and experts at the forefront of the rescue community.
Throughout her explorations, Sutherland also weaves in a wealth of practical tips, such as how to read a dog’s body language, handle behavior problems, and select your own shelter dog as well as fresh insights into what makes dogs – and humans – tick. At a time when Americans have more dogs than children, the time is ripe to end dog homelessness, and RESCUING PENNY JANE reveals how we can do it.
RESCUING PENNY JANE offers an unforgettable, poignant journey into the special world of rescue and shelter dogs. As the New York Times bestselling author of the memoir Bettyville writes, “Sutherland gives us puppy love, yes, but she goes beyond sentiment and shows us how we can change the lives of the creatures who give the world so much.”
About the Author
Amy Sutherland is the best-selling author of three previous books, most recently What Shamu Taught Me About Life, Love and Happiness. She writes for the New York Times, Smithsonian, Preservation, Women's Health and more, and has a regular column, “Bibliophiles,” in the Boston Globe's Sunday Book Section. She lives in Boston with her two rescue dogs, Walter Joe and Penny Jane.
RESCUING PENNY JANE:
One Shelter Volunteer, Countless Dogs, and the Quest to Find Them All Homes
By Amy Sutherland
On Sale: February 21, 2017
Lawsuit argues removal of online animal welfare records violates the Freedom of Information Act and the Administrative Procedure Act
SAN FRANSICO – Today, the Animal Legal Defense Fund filed suit against the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for removing tens of thousands of animal welfare records from the agency’s website. According to the lawsuit, the USDA’s decision to remove the records violates both the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and the Administrative Procedure Act (APA). The removed documents revealed inhumane treatment of animals at thousands of research laboratories, roadside zoos and puppy mills across the country.
The lawsuit, filed in the Northern District of California on behalf of a coalition of animal protection organizations, contends that the USDA violated FOIA, which requires federal agencies to affirmatively disclose final orders and frequently requested records. It also argues that the USDA violated the APA, which prohibits agencies from taking actions that are “arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion, or otherwise not in accordance with law[.]” If the coalition is successful with its claim under the APA, the USDA would be required to resume posting the records online so they are available to the public.
The Animal Legal Defense Fund is joined in the lawsuit by Stop Animal Exploitation NOW!, Companion Animal Protection Society and Animal Folks. The USDA’s decision to stop posting records significantly burdens the organizations because they must now manage voluminous FOIA requests to access the same records, potentially pay large fees, and wait for several months or even years to obtain records previously accessible immediately online at no cost.
Public access to these records is especially important in light of the USDA’s chronically lackadaisical enforcement of the federal Animal Welfare Act (AWA). The Office of Inspector General, an oversight division of the USDA, regularly finds that the USDA renders its enforcement of the AWA largely ineffective by not aggressively pursuing enforcement actions against substandard facilities and by significantly discounting penalties even when it does pursue enforcement action.
“The USDA itself needs oversight due to its continual failure to adequately enforce the federal Animal Welfare Act,” says Animal Legal Defense Fund Executive Director Stephen Wells. “The information blackout is a tremendous blow to transparency and undermines advocates who are working to protect hundreds of thousands of animals across the country.”
The plaintiffs filing today’s lawsuit regularly utilized the USDA database and enforcement actions page to obtain records about the conditions of animals at facilities regulated under the AWA, such as research laboratories, puppy mills and zoos around the country. In turn, these organizations use the records to advocate for stronger animal protection policies, confront the USDA over inadequate regulation of substandard facilities, supply evidence for law enforcement action and build legal cases against especially egregious violators. The Animal Legal Defense Fund relied on these records in its groundbreaking Endangered Species Act (ESA) victory against the Cricket Hollow Animal Park (previously Cricket Hollow Zoo), a roadside zoo that cruelly confined endangered animals in inhumane conditions. It was the first victory applying the ESA to protect animals in captivity.
The organizations are represented pro bono by Margaret Kwoka, Associate Professor at University of Denver Sturm College of Law, and Perkins Coie LLP.
For more information visit, aldf.org.
About the Animal Legal Defense Fund
The Animal Legal Defense Fund was founded in 1979 to protect the lives and advance the interests of animals through the legal system. To accomplish this mission, the Animal Legal Defense Fund files high-impact lawsuits to protect animals from harm; provides free legal assistance and training to prosecutors to assure that animal abusers are punished for their crimes; supports tough animal protection legislation and fights harmful legislation; and provides resources and opportunities to law students and professionals to advance the emerging field of animal law. For more information, please visit aldf.org.
About the Companion Animal Protection Society
Founded in 1992, the Companion Animal Protection Society (CAPS) is the only national nonprofit dedicated exclusively to protecting companion animals from cruelty in pet shops and puppy/kitten mills. CAPS addresses animal suffering through investigations, legislation, education, media relations, consumer assistance, and rescue.
About Stop Animal Exploitation NOW!
SAEN (Stop Animal Exploitation NOW!) is a national non-profit animal advocacy organization dedicated to the rights of all animals. Our mission is to end the exploitation of animals imprisoned in laboratories by educating the public with the reality of what is happening inside the vivisection industry and engaging government agencies to enforce laws, issue citations, and levy fines against criminal labs. Through in-depth investigations of laboratories and national media campaigns, SAEN exposes and ends the misery of animals.
About Animal Folks
Animal Folks is a nonprofit organization devoted to protecting the lives of animals by modernizing the animal law enforcement system in Minnesota. Animal Folks is focused on systemic change — finding new, innovative ways to prevent animal cruelty and improve how animal law is enforced throughout Minnesota. To achieve this mission, Animal Folks conducts research on animal cruelty issues and cases, creates training materials and resources, files criminal and civil complaints against abusers, and collaborates with state, local and national authorities and organizations for sustainable reforms. www.animalfolks.org.