New campaign and online video encourage the public to support stronger federal animal fighting sentencing guidelines

To view the ASPCA’s video, please visit: [http://www.aspca.org/GetTough]

NEW YORK— Following today’s commendable decision by the U.S. Sentencing Commission (USSC) to consider revising the federal sentencing guidelines for animal fighting, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is launching a campaign -- including a compelling new video -- urging the public to actively support stronger sentencing guidelines.

The current sentencing guidelines do not reflect the maximum penalty allowed under federal law, which can discourage federal prosecutors from pursuing animal fighting charges that may only yield a sentence as paltry as six months in jail.

“The current guidelines for dog fighting are woefully inadequate, and don’t come close to matching the heightened seriousness with which Congress, law enforcement, and the public view this barbaric activity,” said Matt Bershadker, ASPCA President & CEO. “By proposing to amend the animal fighting guidelines, the U.S. Sentencing Commission moves us one step closer to giving judges the tools they need to punish these criminals more appropriately, as well as to deter potential criminals.”

In 2008, Congress acknowledged the depravity of dog fighting by increasing the maximum penalty for participating in animal fighting from 3 to 5 years. They again strengthened animal fighting statutes a few years later when they made attending an animal fight a federal offense and added additional penalties for bringing a child. However, federal sentencing guidelines have not been updated to include these increased penalties, creating a discrepancy between what is allowed under federal law and what is expressed in sentencing guidelines. As a result, convicted dog fighters are receiving unacceptably weak sentences.

To help raise awareness about the need for stronger sentences, the ASPCA has released a video as part of their #GetTough campaign to crack down on animal fighting. Featuring interviews with the public, the video reveals the surprise and disappointment of average Americans once they become aware of the terrible disparity between horrific animal crimes and their inadequate penalties.

“This video clearly illustrates the strong public sentiment that dog fighting is a vicious blood sport that should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” said Nancy Perry, senior vice president of ASPCA Government Relations. “Congress already spoke up on behalf of animals when they strengthened the federal laws on animal fighting, and we hope the U.S. Sentencing Commission will follow their lead.”

Dog fighting is a felony in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Although illegal everywhere in the U.S., dog fighting still occurs in every part of the country and in every type of community.  For more information on the ASPCA’s #GetTough campaign and their work to end dog fighting, please visit http://www.aspca.org/GetTough.

About the ASPCA® Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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H.R. 2016/S.1081would prohibit body-gripping traps on National Wildlife Refuges

Washington, DC, April 27, 2015 – Today, leading animal welfare and wildlife conservation organizations -- Born Free USA, the Animal Welfare Institute (AWI), and the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) –  announced support for the reintroduction of the Refuge from Cruel Trapping Act (H.R. 2016/S.1081) in both the U.S. House of Representatives by Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.) and the U.S. Senate  by Senator Cory Booker (D-N.J.). This bill would ban the use or possession of all body-gripping animal traps -- including snares, Conibear traps, and steel-jaw leghold traps -- on lands within the National Wildlife Refuge System (NWRS).

Born Free USA, AWI, and IFAW commend Congresswoman Lowey and Senator Booker for backing the bill and urge swift passage of the legislation to ensure that all National Wildlife Refuges are safe havens for wildlife.

“Indiscriminate body-gripping traps on public land affect the welfare of wild animals and humans alike,” said Congresswoman Lowey. “That’s why I reintroduced the Refuge from Cruel Trapping Act to prohibit the use of inhumane steel jaw leghold traps, Conibear kill traps, and snares within our National Wildlife Refuge System. We need to address this inherent cruelty and restore the true meaning of ‘refuge.’”

"The use of body-gripping animal traps in federal wildlife refuges is contrary to the very mission and purpose of these protected areas. These cruel traps don't distinguish between targeted animals and protected animals, endangered species or pets, and are a safety hazard to people. It's past time to remove this antiquated and inhumane practice from federal wildlife refuges," said Senator Cory Booker (D-N.J).

According to Adam M. Roberts, CEO of Born Free USA and the Born Free Foundation, “Animals and people should have the freedom to enjoy these Refuges without the threat of stepping into a body-gripping trap. The brutality of these traps is shocking; they can crush limbs and organs, and animals often remain trapped for days, in massive pain, before dying. It is inexcusable to subject any animal to such a fate on lands intended for their preservation.”

The NWRS encompasses the most comprehensive and diverse collection of fish and wildlife habitats in the world, and provides a home for more than 240 endangered species. Overall, the NWRS harbors species of more than 700 birds, 220 mammals, 250 reptiles and amphibians, and 200 fish. Despite the NWRS’ 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,” a staggering 54 percent of the refuges within the system allow trapping on refuge grounds.

"Body-gripping traps slam closed with bone-crushing force on any animal that trips the device, while strangling snares tighten around the neck or body of their victims until death finally ends the torture. This cruelty should not be permitted in any place that is called a ‘refuge,’” said Cathy Liss, president of AWI. “Passage of this legislation would be a crucial step toward reducing the suffering inflicted on our nation’s wildlife.”

IFAW Campaigns Officer Carson Barylak added, “The Refuge from Cruel Trapping Act will put a stop to the use of cruel and ecologically destructive traps on wildlife refuges, allowing these public lands to serve their intended purpose--preserving wildlife and ensuring that all Americans can enjoy our shared natural heritage on refuges.” 

Born Free USA, AWI, and IFAW assert that animals and people should have freedom to enjoy National Wildlife Refuges without that danger present, and urge other members of Congress to join Congresswoman Lowey and Sen. Booker in support of H.R. 2016/S.1081.

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.

The Animal Welfare Institute (AWI) is a non-profit charitable organization founded in 1951 and dedicated to reducing animal suffering caused by people. AWI engages policymakers, scientists, industry, and the public to achieve better treatment of animals everywhere—in the laboratory, on the farm, in commerce, at home, and in the wild. For more information on AWI, visit www.awionline.org.

Founded in 1969, IFAW saves animals in crisis around the world. With projects in more than 40 countries, IFAW rescues individual animals, works to prevent cruelty to animals, and advocates for the protection of wildlife and habitats. For more information, visit www.ifaw.org. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

S.B. 177 will allow domestic violence victims to keep their pets safe during crises

NEW YORK—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today applauds Ohio lawmakers for passing S.B. 177, which will help Ohio’s families and companion animals by giving judges the clear legal authority to include pets in protective orders for victims of domestic violence. The bill now heads to Gov. John Kasich to be signed into law.

“Too often, victims will not flee an abusive situation if they have to leave a pet behind, unprotected,” said Vicki Deisner, Midwest legislative director for the ASPCA. “No one should have to make the impossible choice between escaping an abusive situation and ensuring their pet’s safety. The ASPCA urges Governor Kasich to quickly sign this bill into law to address this pervasive problem and protect Ohio families and their pets.”

Research shows that 71 percent of pet-owning women entering domestic violence shelters report that their abuser threatened, harmed or killed a family pet. Even more concerning, as many as 50 percent of domestic violence victims remain in abusive situations for fear of what would happen if they left their pets behind. Despite the frequency and severity of this problem, only a small percentage of domestic violence shelters across the country accommodate pets.

“The inability to flee an abusive relationship places domestic violence victims, their children and pets at a much greater risk of emotional and physical trauma, and even death,” said Deisner. “The ASPCA thanks Senators Michael Skindell (D-Cleveland) and Jim Hughes (R-Columbus), and Representatives Michael Stinziano (D-Columbus) and Marilyn Slaby (R-Copley) for their diligent efforts to pass this legislation as it will encourage victims to seek help and give them the security they need to escape a dangerous environment.”

Twenty-seven U.S. states, as well as the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, have enacted laws that include provisions for pets in orders of protection, and earlier this year, the U.S. Congress introduced federal legislation to expand existing federal domestic violence protections to include pets of domestic violence victims. The Pet and Women Safety (PAWS) Act amends the Violence Against Women Act’s interstate stalking provisions to make crossing state lines to injure pets a punishable offense. It also adds veterinary care to the list of restitution costs that can be recovered by victims, establishes a federal grant program designed to help domestic violence victims safely house their pets, and expresses a recommendation by Congress that states should include pets in protective orders.

For more information on the ASPCA and to join the ASPCA Advocacy Brigade, please visit www.aspca.org.

About the ASPCA® Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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Animals transported to emergency shelter to receive medical attention, treatment

Kendall, Wis.—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®), at the request of the Monroe County Humane Investigator and the Monroe County Sherriff’s Office, is assisting with evidence collection and managing the removal and sheltering of 15 dogs and a parakeet living in an overcrowded mobile home in rural Kendall, Wis. The animals were discovered living among feces, trash and rotting food in a poorly ventilated environment.

As a result of an investigation initiated by Monroe County Humane Investigator Bekah Weitz, a search warrant was executed Thursday morning for the removal of the animals.

“Animal hoarding is a complex issue that can encompass mental health, animal welfare and public safety concerns,” said Kyle Held, Midwest regional director of ASPCA Field Investigations and Response. “Many of the dogs were living in filth, and our immediate goal is to transport them to a safe place where they will receive care and treatment by our medical team.”

“We’re pleased to be able to work collaboratively with our Humane Investigator and the ASPCA to remove these animals from this overwhelming situation and help as many of them as possible,” added Detective Lieutenant Ron Rader with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.

The dogs—ranging from Chihuahuas to Pomeranians—were living in an overcrowded mobile home and exhibited signs of neglect. They also appeared to be suffering from dental disease and dehydration, among other medical issues. As is common in hoarding situations, most of the dogs were not spayed or neutered. ASPCA responders also discovered deceased animal remains on the property.

“The compromised conditions these animals were living in prompted us to take action,” said Monroe County Humane Investigator Bekah Weitz. “It was clear that intervention was needed to help both the owner and the animals. We couldn’t have done it without such great support from all the agencies involved.”

The dogs are being transported to a temporary shelter at an undisclosed location, where they will receive the care and medical attention they need. Agencies including Texas Humane Heroes in Leander, Texas, have deployed responders to assist the ASPCA with the removal and sheltering of the dogs. Additionally, PetSmart Charities® provided supplies, including pet crates and food to support the rescue operation.

The ASPCA will continue to care for the animals at the temporary shelter until suitable placement options are available.

About the ASPCA® Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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A breaking Mercy For Animals Canada undercover investigation reveals sadistic, criminal cruelty to cows at the country’s largest dairy factory farm, leading law enforcement to raid the factory farm and recommend charges against eight workers.

MFA’s investigator documented employees inflicting horrific abuses on cows, including:

  • Using chains, rakes, metal pipes, and canes to viciously whip, punch, kick, hit, and beat cows
  • Hoisting cows into the air by chains around their necks while other workers screamed obscenities at them
  • Sadistically poking at cows’ festering, pus-filled wounds
  • Violently ripping clumps of hair out of cows’ sensitive tails 

Unfortunately, the abuses captured on hidden camera at this facility are not limited to factory farms in Canada.

In the last five years, Mercy For Animals has conducted five undercover investigations into the dairy industry, and every one of these investigations has led to criminal charges and convictions against workers who were caught on video maliciously abusing animals.

Most recently, our investigation at Wiese Brothers Farms in Wisconsin led to multiple criminal convictions of workers who were caught on hidden camera viciously kicking and whipping cows, beating them in the face and body, and using machinery to cruelly hoist sick or injured cows into the air.

Treated as mere milk-producing machines, cows on dairy factory farms endure lives of near constant misery and deprivation. In order to keep a steady supply of milk, the cows are repeatedly impregnated. Several times a day, dairy cows are hooked by their udders to electric milking machines that can cause the cows to suffer painful lesions and mastitis.

If they don’t move fast enough, the cows are often mercilessly beaten. These highly intelligent and social animals suffer almost unimaginable abuse from the time they are born and ripped from their mothers' sides until they are so physically worn out from repeated pregnancies and constant milk production that they are sold for slaughter.

Please join Mercy For Animals in calling for an end to the worst forms of cruelty in the dairy industry.

Then share the hidden-camera video with friends and encourage them to take action too.

Finally, please consider further helping cows, and all farmed animals, by exploring a diet free of eggs, dairy, and meat.

Thank you.

Nathan Runkle Executive Director

P.S. Want to support our vital work? Click here to make a donation.





ANIMAL DEFENDERS INTERNATIONAL EXPOSES BRUTAL MONKEY FARM SENDING ANIMALS TO U.S. LABORATORIES
 
·      Conscious baby monkeys pinned down and tattooed without anesthetic
·      Plans to set up a monkey breeding farm in Labelle, Florida
·      Rising primate imports
 
An undercover investigation by Animal Defenders International (ADI) has filmed horrific treatment of monkeys at Biodia, a Mauritian monkey factory farm that supplies U.S. laboratories and whose monkeys could soon be behind bars in a new Florida breeding farm (1). The ADI findings come just days after the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service revealed that monkey imports are on the rise (2). ADI is calling for the U.S. to stop the import of monkeys for experiments or breeding and for the U.S. to join the international move away from monkey experiments.
 
The ADI investigation took place inside Biodia, one of several Mauritian farms breeding long-tailed macaques for experiments. Findings include: Workers swinging screaming monkeys by their tails; distressed baby monkeys torn from the arms of their desperate mothers and tattooed without anesthetic; monkeys injected in the eyelids for TB tests; monkeys restrained and injected in view of other animals; animals captured from the wild and used as breeding machines; barren, crowded cages; animals killed and injured from fighting; stressful separation of mothers and babies; rough handling; monkeys wrenched from cages by their tails; netted animals slammed onto concrete floors; heavily pregnant monkeys manhandled and pinned down.
 
ADI President Jan Creamer said: “The poor U.S. regulations on primate experiments and imports are shameful, allowing unnecessary suffering, fear, pain and distress to intelligent and highly developed animals when alternatives already exist. U.S. primate imports also cause damage to wild populations and the wider environment. As other nations move away from primate research, the US remains in the scientific backwater, clinging to crude, outdated methods instead of advanced technology. This trade is cruel and unjustified.”
 
Monkeys are snatched from the wild on Mauritius to stock breeding farms. Babies are torn from their mothers prematurely so that the mothers can breed again. The young monkeys born on the farms will be locked in tiny boxes & flown 10,000 miles to U.S. laboratories. During the grueling journey some become sick and can even die (3). Air France & China Southern are the last remaining passenger airlines to fly monkeys destined for laboratories.
 
Monkey imports are on the rise with nearly 20,000 primates imported each year (2). The top importers are controversial Covance, Charles River and Shin Nippon Biomedical Laboratories. Mauritius is the second largest monkey supplier after China, supplying 2,842 animals to the U.S. in 2013, with Biodia supplying 300-600 monkeys each year. Imported monkeys are either sent directly to laboratories for cruel experiments, or are used to breed babies who will end up in laboratories. ADI’s investigation has revealed that Biodia’s U.S. trading partner Prelabs has plans to “establish the first Mauritius breeding colony in the U.S.” in Labelle, Florida (1).
 
Over 70,000 monkeys are used in cruel experiments in the U.S. each year (4). These intelligent, social animals are force-fed chemicals, injected with potentially poisonous substances and electrodes are implanted into their brains. They cry out as they are strapped into restraint chairs to immobilize them for cruel experiments; some experience such extreme fear and distress when being restrained that they suffer rectal prolapses. In experiments studied by ADI, monkeys were killed after suffering blocked lungs, trembling, collapse and bleeding. Terrified monkeys awaiting experiments self-mutilated and one animal chewed his finger to the bone (5, 6).
 
Most monkeys are killed at the end of the experiments, but others are forced to endure years of deprivation in barren cages, with nothing to interest them; fights often occur and monkeys under attack cannot escape due to restricted cage space. Many have been seen performing abnormal behaviors associated with psychological damage.
 
International regulatory bodies, scientists and governments around the world are moving away from monkey experiments and adopting the advanced alternatives which are available. The European Union, made up from 28 countries, has ended the use of apes and wild caught monkeys, placed restrictions on monkey experiments and is phasing out the trade in monkeys born to wild caught parents (7).
 
There are a number of alternatives available to replace monkey experiments, including: microdosing, where tiny amounts of new drugs are safely given to human volunteers - significantly more accurate at assessing the way a product is absorbed, broken down and passed through the body than primate models (8); biochips, which mimic human organs on USB-sized chips “providing comprehensive toxicity data very quickly and cheaply” (9), 3-D tissue engineering using human cells; and QSAR which predicts the toxicity of drugs through comparison with similar substances.
 
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Animal Defenders International With offices in Los Angeles, London and Bogotá, Animal Defenders International campaigns to protect animals in entertainment; replacement of animals in experiments; worldwide traffic in endangered species; vegetarianism; factory farming; pollution and conservation. ADI also rescues animals in distress worldwide. ADI-gathered evidence has led to campaigns and legislative action all over the world to protect them. www.ad-international.org

WASHINGTON—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today applauds the U.S. House of Representatives for passing a provision to crack down on animal fighting in the Farm Bill conference report.  This provision will make attending an animal fight a federal offense and criminalize bringing a child to an animal fight. This version of the bill also excludes the dangerous King Amendment, which would have had potentially devastating impacts for state animal protection laws across the country. The Farm Bill conference report must now be passed by the Senate before being presented to the president for his signature.

“Animal fighting and those who fuel this horrific form of cruelty will not be tolerated in our society,” said Nancy Perry, senior vice president of ASPCA Government Relations. “Children need protection from the dangerous culture of animal fighting, as well as its associated illegal activities such as drugs, weapons and gambling. The ASPCA applauds the House for passing this measure as part of the Farm Bill to combat animal fighting and protect public safety.”

The provision included in the Farm Bill will strengthen federal animal fighting laws by making attending an animal fight a federal offense as well as imposing penalties for bringing a child to an animal fight. This provision is similar to the Animal Fighting Spectator Prohibition Act (S. 666 / H.R. 366), standalone legislation with strong bipartisan support in both chambers.

“In addition to strengthening laws against animal fighting,” Perry added, “with this Farm Bill, Congress rejects the King Amendment, an incredible federal power-grab that could have prevented states from passing their own laws to protect animals.  The ASPCA thanks our leaders in Congress for standing up for animals and states’ rights.”

The King Amendment, introduced by Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), would have gutted state animal cruelty laws across the country and prevented states from passing their own laws regarding the production of “agricultural products”—a term so sweeping it could have included farm animals, dogs in puppy mills, and many other commercial enterprises involving animals. As a result, improved humane standards and animal welfare laws at the state level would have been negated.

For more information on the ASPCA and to join the ASPCA Advocacy Brigade, please visit www.aspca.org.

About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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(June 17, 2013) – Humane Society International CEO and President Andrew Rowan, Ph.D., sent letters urging Chinese Ambassadors to the United States, United Kingdom and Canada to work with officials in Yulin, Guangxi province, to end an inhumane annual event known as the Yulin Dog Meat Festival, where tens of thousands of dogs are bludgeoned to death in the streets for meat consumption. As outrage builds worldwide and within China against the event, Rowan sent a letter to the ambassadors on behalf of HSI supporters and members. The letters are also being sent to Yulin and Guangxi officials.

Rowan states: “Millions of animal advocates around the globe, including those in China, are protesting this inhumane, barbaric spectacle which has no place in modern society and where the butchering of tens of thousands of dogs has started and will go on for two weeks. Thousands of dogs are stuffed into and heaped on top of one another in plastic or wire crates, and are sent overland via truck on grueling, sometimes weeks-long journeys; many do not survive. Those that do survive, just barely, are then bludgeoned to death in the streets. In addition to the cruelty, this event is a public health risk because the commercial trade in dogs for meat involves the large-scale transport of dogs across international borders in Asia, and incidence of rabies has been linked to dogs in the trade. We respectfully request that the ambassadors work with Yulin officials, on behalf of all animal advocates, to end it, just as similar events elsewhere in China have been ended.”

HSI works in the region to bring about an end to the trade, where possible, and will co-host later this month the 4th Annual China Companion Animal Protection Symposium to encourage Chinese society to confront the cruelty of the trade in dogs and cats for meat consumption. At least 10 million dogs are believed to be killed for consumption of their meat in China annually, predominantly in South China and Northeast China. Last year, a dog meat festival in Jinhua City, Zhejing province ended after opposition from Chinese animal groups.

Humane Society International and its partner organizations together constitute one of the world's largest animal protection organizations. For nearly 20 years, HSI has been working for the protection of all animals through the use of science, advocacy, education and hands-on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty worldwide — on the Web at hsi.org.

 

Legislation would criminalize attendance at animal fights

NEW YORK—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) commends the U.S. Senate for passing the Animal Fighting Spectator Prohibition Act as part of  the Farm Bill (Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2013 – S. 954). This provision would make attending an animal fight a federal offense and impose additional penalties for bringing a child to an animal fight.

“Animal fighting is a brutal form of abuse where animals are exploited and forced to fight as their owners profit from their torture,” said Nancy Perry, senior vice president of ASPCA Government Relations. “Children need protection from the dangerous culture of animal fighting, as well as its associated illegal activities such as drugs, weapons and gambling. The ASPCA applauds the Senate for passing this measure as part of its Farm Bill, thereby strengthening laws to combat animal fighting and protect public safety.”

Spectators at animal fights are not there accidentally—they intentionally seek out the criminal activity at secret locations for the entertainment of watching two animals fight to the death and the opportunity to gamble on the barbaric event. When animal fighting operations are raided, it is a common practice for the organizers, promoters and animal owners to blend into the crowd of spectators in order to escape law enforcement. The Animal Fighting Spectator Prohibition Act would discourage individuals from enabling animal fights via their illegal wagers and admission fees, and will ensure that organizers cannot easily hide in the crowd when law enforcement officials arrive.

The Animal Fighting Spectator Prohibition Act (S. 666) was introduced as standalone legislation in April by Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) and David Vitter (R-La.) in order to strengthen laws against animal fighting. It was subsequently added to the Senate’s Farm Bill.

The House version of the Farm Bill (H.R. 1947), which contains similar language pertaining to animal fighting laws, is expected to be voted on later this summer. For more information on the ASPCA’s efforts to tackle animal fighting and to join the ASPCA Advocacy Brigade, please visit www.aspca.org.


About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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May 2, 2013, Kingston, NY: In conjunction with New Paltz Police, following a tip from a CPS caseworker, Ulster County SPCA Cruelty Investigators visited a New Paltz apartment in the early morning of Wednesday, April 24th 2013. Allegedly, numerous cats were being housed in the apartment, contributing to the ill health of both the cats and the child residing inside.

The owner of the cats was cooperative, recognizing a situation grown out of control, pleading with Investigators Fix and Saunders for a solution. The Ulster County SPCA organized a large rescue of the cats in the evening, removing them all to its shelter at 20 Wiedy Road, Kingston NY.

SPCA animal handlers spent more than 3 hours caging, inventorying and medically assessing the 103 felines, which ranged in age from newborns up to several years old. Many of the females were pregnant, and other cats suffered mild respiratory or intestinal illnesses. Five staff members from the Ulster County SPCA rescued the cats and kittens. Two staff members remained at the shelter to ready the rooms for the new arrivals. For several days following the rescue, the medical staff at the shelter tended to their health needs, which included surgery, FIV/FELV testing and vaccinations.

All the cats will become available for adoption in 7-10 days of the rescue.

 

The UCSPCA typically houses 100-125 cats within the shelter. A rescue of this magnitude nearly doubled a population already at capacity. Assistance with the care of these animals is being provided by staff and volunteers and coordinated by long time Cat Department Supervisor, Robin Akus.

The UCSPCA is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to preventing cruelty to animals in Ulster County. Donations of canned and/or dry cat food, paper towels, blankets, towels, litter pans or a financial donation, no matter how small would be very much appreciated and can be dropped off at the shelter Tuesday through Sunday from 11:30 AM to 3:30 PM. Donations can also be mailed. UCSPCA 20 Wiedy Roadd. Kingston, NY 12401. 845-331-5377. www.ucspca.org.

 

Ulster County SPCA * 20 Wiedy Roadd * Kingston, NY * 12401
845-331-5377 * www.ucspca.org
Tuesday - Sunday 11:30 AM to 3:30 PM

 

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