Monday, August 30, 2010

Bob Barker and Mercy For Animals Exposes Veal Industry

Newly released hidden camera video secretly shot by an investigator with Mercy For Animals at one of the nation's top veal producers exposes baby calves covered in feces and chained by their necks in narrow stalls, where they cannot even turn around or walk.

The covert footage was recorded at Buckeye Veal Farm in Apple Creek, Ohio, and reveals baby calves chained inside 2-feet wide wooden stalls – so narrow they cannot turn around, walk, run, play, socialize with other animals, or engage in other basic natural behaviors. In such tight confinement, the animals are unable to lie down comfortably, breathe fresh air, see sunlight, clean themselves or bond with their mothers.

Sadly, the majority of calves raised for veal in the United States are subjected to this harsh and intensive confinement for their entire 18 to 20-week lives.

After viewing the footage, Dr. Marc Bekoff, an animal behavior expert at the University of Colorado, Boulder, stated: "Frankly, the treatment of these calves is disgusting, horrific, and reprehensible."

Yet, Costco and Giant Eagle grocery stores around the nation continue to sell veal from calves raised in this inhumane manner.

Due to its inherent cruelty, the American Veterinary Medical Association opposes chaining calves in restrictive crates and five U.S. states, as well as all 27 countries in the European Union, have outlawed their use.

Sickened by the conditions endured by these baby animals, Bob Barker, Emmy Award-winning host of Price is Right and longtime animal advocate, is joining MFA in urging consumers nationwide to boycott dairy and veal and Costco and Giant Eagle to immediately end the sale of veal – much of which comes from the facility investigated.

In letters sent to CEOs of both companies, Mr. Barker wrote: "As a civilized society, it's our moral obligation to prevent needless animal cruelty. Chaining baby calves in crates where they cannot even turn around is abusive and totally unacceptable."

While veal production represents one of the most abusive forms of animal agriculture, animal suffering is also widespread throughout the meat, dairy, and egg industries. Undercover investigations by MFA at dairy farms, pig farms, egg farms, hatcheries, and slaughterhouses have all exposed cruelty and violence to farmed animals.

Compassionate consumers can end their direct financial support of farmed animal abuse by rejecting veal, and other animal products, and adopting a vegan diet.

Please go vegan.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

9 Year Old Activist Says LET LOLITA LIVE! (LLL)

Save Lolita!  Please join the cause!

Trevor and Capt. Watson of the Sea Shepherd

"The reason I started this page was because I watche a video of Lolita and I thought that no more whales should be treated like crud anymore! And I thought of the protest in Seattle that I am going to with my mom and brother and sister and dad, and I wanted to make sure she lives, so I thought of LLL which stands for Let Lolita Live! so please help Lolita live with her family!"

These were the words of a nine year old boy, Trevor, who "gets it".  Animals that are wild, should be left alone in the wild. Save Lolita!  What an amazing young activist.  Please join his facebook page HERE, and please help Lolita by visiting WWW.SAVELOLITA.COM

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Blood Dolphins: Return to The Cove - Animal Planet New Series

Ric O'Barry is back! Animal Planet picks up where the Academy Award-winning documentary "The Cove" left off as Ric and his son Lincoln expose dolphin hunting in Japan and around the world.

Please follow the link to see a preview of this new series that I certainly hope, along with the documentary, "THE COVE" will help bring about change!

And if you are unfamiliar with "THE COVE", please see my previous post here:

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Ohio Animal Caretaker Killed During Bear Feeding

Ayinde O. Chase - AHN News Editor

Columbia Station, OH, United States (AHN) - An Ohio animal caretaker was mauled to death while feeding a bear. The victim, 24-year-old Brent Kandra, was an employee of Sam Mazzola, an exhibitor of exotic animals.

Investigators are looking into the incident to ascertain what may have provoked the attack.

However it appears the bear was out of its enclosure for the feeding and police were reportedly told that was routine. After the attack authorities were able to get the bear back in its cage without further incident.

News of the attack reached the Lorain County Sheriff's Office about 7:30 p.m. on Thursday via a 911 call. Hours later a spokesman for the Cuyahoga County Coroner confirmed Kandra died Friday morning at MetroHealth Medical Center.

Mazzola was also rushed to a medical care facility after the attack to be treated for an unspecified medical condition.

Previously he's come under fire from animal-rights groups for his unconventional business practices.

PETA went after Mazzola 4 years ago for his practice of letting paying customers wrestle his
black bears according to reports.

Also an inquiry by the Department of Agriculture led to Mazzola losing his license to exhibit exotic animals. Additionally he faced a $13,950 fine for his bear-wrestling act since he didn’t have the proper licensing

Read more:

Read more:

58 Pilot Whales Die In New Zealand Beach Stranding

Fifty-eight pilot whales died after they washed onto an isolated beach in northern New Zealand and rescue volunteers' initial efforts to refloat 15 others that survived failed Friday.

A fresh attempt to save the 15 beached sea mammals — which weigh up to 3,300 pounds each — will be made early Saturday, using machinery including a crane and transporter, said Department of Conservation acting area manager Mike Davies.

The 73 pilot whales probably stranded during the night on remote Karikari Beach which is why so many died before they were discovered, said the department's community relations manager, Carolyn Smith.

New Zealand frequently sees several mass whale strandings around its coastline, mainly each summer as whales pass by on their migration to and from Antarctic waters. Scientists have not been able to determine why whales become stranded.

A pod of 101 pilot whales stranded on the same beach in 2007.

Kimberly Muncaster, chief executive of the Project Jonah whale aid group, said the 15 surviving whales were in "fairly poor condition."

About 40 people tried to refloat them at high tide on Friday. Among those helping the department were trained volunteers from the Far North Whale Rescue group.

Davies said the 15 whales would not need to be sedated for Saturday's second rescue attempt using the heavy equipment as they were already in quite a docile state.

"The plan at first light will be to remove the whales across about half a mile of road by transporter and refloat them in nearby Matai Bay," he said, where sea conditions would be easier and the bay more sheltered.

New Zealand has one of the world's highest rates of whale strandings, according to the Department of Conservation. Since 1840, more than 5,000 strandings of whales and dolphins have been recorded around the New Zealand coast.

This is just so difficult to watch.  I don't know why this happens, but I am certainly sure that oil spills, global warming, and other factors lend a hand in this.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Singer Colbie Caillat Visits Farm Sanctuary

On Friday, August 13, Grammy award-winning “Bubbly” singer Colbie Caillat and members of her band, including guitarist Justin Young, took a break from their busy schedule touring with Sheryl Crow to visit the upstate New York Shelter of Farm Sanctuary, the nation’s leading farm animal protection organization, where they spent time “falling” for farm animals rescued from abuse and neglect.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Hero Dog Runs for Help When Owner Collapses - AP NEWS

Her legs may only be a few inches long, but Missy the dachshund proved that she can run like the wind -- when she has to.

Her owner Charlie Burdon, who had recently had heart surgery, collapsed inside his Oregon home last week. Missy, who was in the yard, immediately sensed something was awry, ABC2 news in Baltimore, Md. reports.

Normally, the 11-year-old dachshund never leaves her yard unless Burdon is with her. But this time, she sprinted across the street to the home of neighbor Charles Mitchell, who was working outside.

Mitchell told Missy to head home, but the loyal pooch refused to budge. Finally, he began following the little dog. "Missy was right in front of me, letting me know something was wrong inside that house," Mitchell told the Associated Press. When he arrived, he found Burdon and quickly called the paramedics.

It turned out that Burdon had been overcome by a severe case of vertigo. He's now doing fine -- thanks to Missy. "It's remarkable that you can put your trust into your dog" says Burdon. More evidence that good things come in small packages.

Animals are truly compassionate and only know one thing - LOVE

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Video Spotlight : by Natalie Custer : Linkin Park - "Leave Out All The Rest"

My friend and fellow vegan animal rights advocate, Natalie Custer put together an incredibly moving video that captures the essence of the animals that we, on a daily basis try to help by inspiring others to treat animals with respect and to go vegan!  The feelings that ALL animals have, both human and non- human are the same. We all want to be happy. We all want to be healthy. We all want to enjoy the simple pleasures of the world. WE ALL WANT TO LIVE. Awesome video that captures the wonder of all life and how precious it is!  If this video inspires you please leave feedback for me and for Natalie by joining my blog and her You Tube channel.  Thank you!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

My Visit to Farm Sanctuary - Watkins Glen, New York

Just by seeing the signs "Farm Sanctuary - 2 Miles", I felt like I was on my way to Disney World or something.  And rightly so.  For my journey into veganism started April 24th, 2009 (You can check out my blog entry for my story here), 
in which I finally woke up to the abuse and torture of the animals we call food.  Since then I have visited as many sanctuaries I could get to.  Catskill Animal Sanctuary, and Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary are the closest ones to where I live in New York.  I have visited them several time and really love the work that they are doing to raise awareness of animals on factory farms.  So when I was given the opportunity to take some time off from work, I knew where I wanted to go.

A 4 hour drive for me, nestled in the rolling hills of the Finger Lakes Region of upstate New York, was a place that is as spiritually healing, and inspiring for those visiting as it is a home for hundreds of animals that, if not rescued, would surely have been on someones dinner plate or coat rack years ago.  Farm Sanctuary!  The original sanctuary for animals.  It was just beautiful.

I walked the farm and just took in the scenery.  Beautiful hills, green grass, trees.  Cows laying in the grass, taking in the sun.  Pigs rooting in the dirt and rolling in the mud to keep cool.  Chickens pecking and scratching at the dirt looking for bugs to eat.  This is what a farm used to look like.  When it comes to animals raised for food, the scene is ANYTHING but what you would imagine on Old MacDonald's Farm that we are all told when we are young.  Only at a Farm Sanctuary can you see these images, the peace and tranquility of animals that have no worries, and it makes my heart melt knowing that these animals were spared a horrible life and death.  Each animal has their own story of rescue and survival, and each one, like human animals, each one has their own personality.

VEGANISM :  "Veganism is a way of living that seeks to exclude, as far as possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing and any other purpose."

As a vegan it is very obvious that with every meal I eat, and every purchase I make, be it clothing, personal care items, or entertainment choices, my thoughts always come back to the animals.  It's not a perfect world, I am not a perfect person, but I try my hardest to do the least bit of harm as I can to these wonderful creatures I share the planet with.

I had a wonderful time in Watkins Glen and can't wait to go back!

Cows staying cool
My favorite farm animal...The goats!
Belly rubs for the pigs!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Brave Bull Escapes Fiery Indiana Truck Crash and Finds Refuge at Farm Sanctuary

Determined Bovine’s Dash for Freedom Shows Farm Animals’ Strong Desire to Live

WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. – August 5, 2010 – A witness at the crash site called it “the worst thing I’ve ever seen.” Cattle walked the road smoldering or still on fire. Others lay dying on the pavement, with wounds so bad that their bones were showing. Out of this catastrophic nightmare bolted a lone determined bull, who despite suffering severe burns of his own, was so desperate to stay alive that he attempted to vault over a 3-foot concrete median. Early next week, this brave animal will arrive to a hero’s welcome at the upstate New York shelter of Farm Sanctuary, the nation’s leading farm animal protection organization, where his wounds will be gently treated and his traumatic ordeal put behind him. Soon, he will roam green pastures, bond with new friends, and live freely, as all cattle should. Late Monday night, amid the sirens, flashing lights, terror, and confusion, nothing could have seemed further away.

The accident happened just before midnight, when a 1999 Peterbilt semi hauling 34 cattle headed west on I-94 crashed into a 2011 Volvo semi at State Road 49 near Chesterton, Indiana. The driver of the cattle trailer was on his citizens' band radio talking to another driver when he hit the rear of the other truck. According to Indiana State Police, the tractor caught fire and ruptured, releasing the terrified animals onto the highway. The truck's driver dove out his window to escape the fire, but 18 of the 34 cattle perished, and others were injured. Of the 16 cattle who survived, seven attempted to escape with their lives, but as of 6 a.m. Tuesday, all had been accounted for, except one. According to Indiana State Police Sgt. Ann Wojas, the determined 2-year-old bull attempted to jump the 3-foot concrete median into the eastbound lanes but didn’t make it. After eluding capture for 12 hours and winning the respect and admiration of local residents moved by the story of a slaughterhouse-bound bull who literally rose from the ashes to save his own life, the courageous animal was caught by local officials and taken to the Porter County Animal Shelter, where he currently awaits safe transport to Farm Sanctuary.

“Farm Sanctuary is happy to take in this bull, who has experienced unimaginable horrors over the past several days,” said Farm Sanctuary National Shelter Director Susie Coston. “Every year thousands of animals die in transport accidents like the one witnessed by Indiana residents on I-94 last week. All too often, animals who survive these accidents are shot on site; rarely are they afforded veterinary care. To see so many people come forward and make a concerted effort to save this animal’s life shows a level of compassion seldom extended to animals raised for food, who deserve as much consideration as any other animal. We hope that his story of survival will help spread compassion for these animals far and wide and bring awareness to the need for laws that better protect farm animals during transport.”

The runaway bull follows in the footsteps of other daring animals who famously made dashes for freedom and now spend their days enjoying the peace and abundance of Farm Sanctuary’s New York Shelter — including two crafty cows named Maxine and Queenie, both escapees from a Queens slaughterhouse, whose stories have changed thousands of hearts and minds about animals and food.

More information about the beef industry and rampant problems in transport can be found at

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Website Spotlight : American Anti-Vivisection Society (AAVS)

Founded in 1883, the American Anti-Vivisection Society (AAVS) is the first non-profit animal advocacy and educational organization in the United States dedicated to ending experimentation on animals in research, testing, and education. AAVS also opposes and works to end other forms of cruelty to animals. We work with students, grassroots groups, individuals, teachers, the media, other national organizations, government officials, members of the scientific community, and advocates in other countries to legally and effectively end the use of animals in science through education, advocacy, and the development of alternative methods to animal use.

Please check out the site and support them, by clicking the logo below.

Here is a video of what the AAVS is trying to stop: (viewer discretion is advised)

Seven Puppies Die in American Airlines Cargo

Thinking of checking your pets on your next summer flight? After checking out this sad bit of news, you may want to think again.

Seven puppies have died after flying in the cargo hold of an American Airlines jet.

According to The Associated Press, American Airlines said it contacted the shipper who loaded 14 puppies in portable pet carriers inside the cargo hold of one of its MD-80 planes, which was scheduled to leave Tulsa, Oklanhoma at 6:30 a.m. Unfortunately, the flight was delayed an hour by storms in Chicago. And while the plane sat on the tarmac in Tulsa at 7 a.m., temperatures had already climbed to 86 degrees.

Factors ranging from heat stroke to carbon monoxide poisoning to pre-existing health problems are being explored in connection with the puppies' deaths. American Airlines spokeswoman Mary Frances Fagan said cargo holds carrying animals are routinely kept between 50 and 70 degrees while in flight.

Citing the 100+ degree temperature forecast for that day, ABC News has indicated that "loading the puppies appears to have violated the airline's policy for the safe travel of pets which states that 'pets cannot be accepted when the current or forecasted temperature is above 85 degrees any location on the itinerary.'"

Fagan told the Tulsa World newspaper that the puppies were "taken off the plane alive." According to her statement, while they were being transported to connecting gates, the baggage handlers became concerned by the dog's lethargic appearance. All 14 pups were taken to be examined by a veterinarian, where seven of them ultimately died.

This news comes hot on the heels of the Department of Transportation's report detailing animal deaths on flights and of's annual announcement of the most pet-friendly U.S. airlines. (American was not on the list.)

Although animal deaths in cargo are typically quite rare, why take chances with your furry family members? When traveling with a pet, it's always wise to consider other options, including driving (if possible), or if you must fly, booking your animals on an airline that specializes in the safe transport of pets, such as Companion Air and Pet Airways.

Please think twice before you decide to transport your companion animal via any airlines.  Once you let the crate go down that conveyor belt, you have no idea what happens to your friend.  Besides the obvious stress of not knowing what the heck is going on, the animal is frightened.  Then, like this example, the heat in the cargo hold was too much for the puppies to stand and the perished.  If at all possible, drive to your destination.  Your friends will be safe, secure and not away from you.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Action Alert! : Please vote - 2011 Rescue & Refuge Calendar — 25th Anniversary Commemorative Edition!

Dear friend of farm animals,

It’s been a busy summer here at Farm Sanctuary. We’re continuing to care for hundreds of animals at our two shelters, fighting for legislation that will protect animals across the country, and giving voice to millions of farm animals who cannot speak for themselves.

And now, we’re busy preparing our 2011 Rescue & Refuge Calendar — our 25th Anniversary Commemorative Edition!

That’s where you come in. Because you are someone who cares about farm animals, we need your help to pick the cover image.

Choose your favorite photo from a selection of three beautiful images featuring soulful portraits of our animal ambassadors. Cast your vote online now!

Our calendar is a great way for you and many others to meet just a few of the animals we care for at our sanctuaries each day. These special individuals are ambassadors for all farm animals. Their powerful stories reveal the injustice and cruelty that farm animals face, and why our efforts are so critical. The animals also show us how beautiful and amazing they are — each a unique individual. The sanctuary animals are an inspiration. Your support has helped us rescue and care for these animals, and work to protect them against cruelty.

Voting ends next Friday, August 6 so you only have one week to vote. Click here to choose your favorite today. We will announce the winner later next month.

Yours for farm animals,

Gene Baur

President and Co-founder, Farm Sanctuary

Want to reserve your calendar? After you cast your vote, you can make a special gift of $50 or more to ensure that you receive the beautiful 25th Anniversary Commemorative Edition Rescue & Refuge Calendar. Your gift will support all of Farm Sanctuary's efforts to end farm animal cruelty.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

One of 2 dogs left sealed in rear of pickup truck outside Holyoke mall has died

HOLYOKE - One of two dogs left unattended in the enclosed bed of a pickup truck for about two hours outside the Holyoke Mall Sunday has died.

Pam Peebles, executive director for the Thomas J. O’Connor Animal Control and Adoption Center in Springfield, said the dog, a 5-year-old male yellow Labrador retriever named Jasper, died about 4 a.m. Monday morning at Boston Road Animal Hospital in Springfield.

Peebles said she believes the cause of the dog’s death was cardiac arrest as a result of heat stroke.

The smaller dog, Morgi, an 8-year-old chihuahua-corgie mix, has recovered and was returned to its family.

Peebles said larger dogs can be more susceptible to the heat.

The decision to release the surviving dog back to the family was made jointly by Holyoke Animal Control Office Donald Tryon and personnel at the Thomas J. O’Connor, Peebles said.

“They aren’t bad people,” Peebles said of the owners. “They did something really stupid and are they are pretty devastated.”

The family had rescued the dogs when their previous owners had no longer been able to care for them and they had been well-cared for prior to the tragedy on Sunday, Peebles said.

One of the owners, Robert Dufresne, of 392 Amostown Road, West Springfield, was charged with two counts of cruelty to animals, police said.

Dufresne was arraigned Monday in Holyoke District Court. Innocent pleas were entered on his behalf and he was released on his own recognizance. The case was continued until Sept. 23.

Cruelty to animals is a felony with a maximum penalty of five years in state prison, Police Lt. Manny J. Febo said.

Police Chief Anthony R. Scott said it would be up the Hampden District Attorney’s office as to whether or not one of the cruelty to animals charges would be upgraded given the dog’s death.

Hampden District Attorney William M. Bennett could not be immediately reached for comment.


After seeing this story, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) sent the following tips for keeping animals safe in hot weather and during travel. PETA notes that on a 78-degree day, the temperature inside a car parked in the shade is 90 degrees -- and the inside of a car parked in the sun can reach 160 degrees in a matter of minutes.

Keep dogs inside: Unlike humans, dogs can only sweat through their footpads and cool themselves by panting. Soaring temperatures can cause heat stress and be physically damaging or fatal.

Water and shade: If animals must be left outside, they should be supplied with ample water and shade, and the shifting sun needs to be taken into account. Even brief periods of direct exposure to the sun while you're at work can have life-threatening consequences.

Walk, don't run: In very hot, humid weather, never exercise dogs by cycling while they try to keep up or by running them while you jog. Dogs will collapse before giving up, at which point it may be too late to save them.

Avoid parked cars: Never leave an animal in a parked car in warm weather, even for short periods with the windows slightly open. Dogs trapped inside parked cars can succumb to heatstroke within minutes -- even if the car isn't parked in direct sunlight.

Pickups: Never transport animals in the bed of a pickup truck. This practice is dangerous—and illegal in many cities and states—because animals can catapult out of the truck bed on a sudden stop or choke if they jump out while they're tied up.

Stay alert and save a life: Keep an eye on all outdoor animals. Make sure that they have adequate water and shelter. If you see an animal in distress, contact humane authorities right away and give them immediate relief by providing water.
George Graham, The Republican
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