Written by Alisa Mullins
Accompanied by his own former "shelter dog", Sky,
Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper signed a bill into law last week naming animals adopted from
shelters Colorado's official "state pet." Colorado is the first state to distinguish—and promote the adoption of—animals
from shelters in this way.
The law was spearheaded by students at Peakview School in Walsenburg and
Rooney Ranch Elementary school in Lakewood as part of a school project to learn about
the legislative process. Kids attended a Senate committee hearing to testify in
favor of the bill. One legislator's rescued dog, Angus, also took part.
At the hearing, 14-year-old Peakview student Roger Arellano
reminded legislators that raising awareness about the need to adopt animals
from shelters is "a matter of life and death."
In recognition of
their achievement, PETA Kids has honored students at both schools with
Compassionate Kids awards, and we've also sent thank-you notes and vegan
chocolates to the bill's sponsors as well as the governor.
Written by Michelle Kretzer
Little Olivia was found in a warehouse district and brought to PETA by a distraught worker. She needed round-the-clock veterinary care to treat an infection that almost left her blind, anemia so severe that she was a candidate for a blood transfusion, and advanced malnutrition. Soon, Olivia slowly started to regain her strength. She had clearly been someone's companion since she was spayed and declawed, but she wound up wandering about by herself and no one knew why. PETA ran ads, but no one responded to them or to the "found animal" reports that we filed or to our fliers. Her background remains a mystery.
Despite everything that she had endured, Olivia still loved humans, especially the devoted PETA fieldworker who spent the night on the floor with her the first few nights of her sojourn with us. We wanted to make sure that her gentle spirit and seemingly endless desire for affection would never be taken for granted again. Even though we placed Olivia's picture and an appeal to adopt her on the front page of PETA's website, alerted our members and supporters through Facebook, and put fliers around town, we didn't find a suitable adopter. Luckily, a PETA staffer who had taken her in to foster
decided that the precious cat should stay. She loves her feline brother, Clyde, who is also a PETA rescue.
Although some people can pay top dollar for a Yorkshire terrier, that doesn't always mean that the little dog will have a great home. And poor Benny certainly didn't. PETA found him dodging traffic on a dangerous street and took him to our headquarters in Norfolk, Virginia. He had a collar but no tags or microchip, and again, although we filed reports and posted fliers and ads, no one bothered to claim him.
Even though Yorkies are popular, Benny had been through enough, and not just anyone who wanted a cute tiny dog would make a suitable adopter. It took a lot of looking for a home, but thanks to a local vet clinic, PETA found a retired couple who had just had to euthanize one of their two Yorkies because of old age and failing health. When we visited with the family at their home, they fit Benny to a T, and Benny is now helping the other dog stop grieving.
It isn't easy to find decent, lasting homes for animals—not just homes where they will be sheltered, fed, walked, and sometimes petted but homes where animals are respected members of the family. Every animal deserves companionship, excellent vet care, playtime, fun outings to the park or beach (for dogs), and a peaceful, painless release when their lives have come to an end. PETA won't compromise our standards and send an animal into a substandard home just to make our adoption rates look good.
So, can you help? We are now searching for the perfect home for Bea. She was found wandering the streets, and although she is in good health and thus likely hasn't been on her own for long, no one seems to want to claim her.
Bea is a calm, sweet beagle-Chihuahua mix who weighs about 25 pounds. She is young and housetrained. She gets along well with children and other dogs and would be happiest with someone who is often home. She is irresistible.
If you think that your family is the perfect adoptive family for Bea and you would like to help with our next success story, please e-mail us at Adopt@peta.org.
It breaks our hearts to report
the passing of Roxie "Rock Star" Patterson, a little wiggly slip of a
dog with an exuberant personality as big as a 20,000-seat stadium. Roxie was
rescued 11 years ago by PETA cruelty caseworkers after one of the other dogs in
her home killed the family's cat and started eyeing her next. The caseworkers
discovered that poor little Roxie was also being bullied by the family
patriarch because she wasn't "macho" enough. Roxie won the heart of
former PETA Foundation Director Jannette Patterson and thereafter went with her
everywhere. She seemed to enjoy flying and napping under Jannette's airplane
seat, always ready to give her a smooch upon arrival.
We knew Roxie by another name,
too—"Noodlehead," for her silly natural '80s
hairband hairdo. She became internationally famous after she was featured on
the cover of Animal Times and the
PETA calendar, on PETA holiday cards, and in a spay-and-neuter public
service announcement with John
McEnroe. She was even chosen
by the New York Daily News as New York
City's Ugliest Dog (go figure).
To commemorate the 11 years that she
shared with Roxie, Jannette is dedicating the next 11 days to helping other animals
who are abused, as Roxie once was. For every dollar that Jannette spends on
non-essential items (such as shoes, clothing, books, and coffee-shop
lattes) during the next 11 days, she is going to donate an equal amount to PETA's
Matching Fund—and she's asking
her friends, family, and fellow PETA members to do the same.
We know that Roxie's passing leaves a big hole in Jannette's
heart and in the universe. We are grateful that Jannette, in typically kind
Jannette fashion, has chosen to channel her grief into helping us rescue the next
canine rock star out there waiting for a chance to show everyone what she's
got. Rock on, Roxie.
little dachshund was allowed to roam, and that's what he was doing when he probably
got attacked by another dog, sustaining an eye
injury that became painfully abscessed and swollen. Untreated, Slim's infected
eye bulged grotesquely out of its socket.
PETA learned about Slim, we pressured local animal control officials to compel the
owner to get veterinary care for the suffering dog. The owner made a vet appointment,
but the cost of the recommended surgery was beyond his means. When animal control
told the owner that his only two options were to get Slim the surgery that he desperately
needed or to surrender him to people who would, the owner relinquished him.
72 hours, Slim had the surgery.
Now, he is on the mend in a foster home, and as he awaits adoption, he is finally receiving
the loving care and attention that every dog deserves.
Written by Jeff Mackey
Two things that PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk is
passionate about are helping
animals (no surprise there) and auto
racing, so perhaps this was inevitable: After reading that NASCAR sponsorship this
season is at a low, PETA has asked racing superstar Dale Earnhardt Jr. to
consider using the available space on his car to spread a lifesaving spay-and-neuter
tedmurphy | cc by 2.0
PETA has observed firsthand the effects of animal
homelessness from its work on the front lines of animal protection. In Earnhardt's
home state of North Carolina, PETA's Community Animal Project (CAP) rescues animals, even when that means crawling through sewers, searching
through junkyards, scaling trees, dodging cars, or enticing frightened strays
to safety. CAP also delivers food, doghouses, and straw bedding to neglected
animals who have never known a kind word or touch—and they return to monitor
the animals' conditions, check their housing, and make sure that they have enough
to eat and drink.
letter to Earnhardt points out, around half of the 6 to
8 million animals who enter U.S. shelters each year must be euthanized for lack of enough good homes. Others never find a refuge and are left to fend
for themselves on the streets, where they create more litters and often succumb
to exposure or disease or even are abused by cruel people.
The solution to animal overpopulation is to reduce the birth rate through spaying and neutering—and once again, PETA
is leading efforts to facilitate these vital procedures. Its mobile veterinary clinics offer low-cost to no-cost sterilization and other veterinary services in the
most impoverished areas of North Carolina for families who cannot afford to
have their animals fixed.
By placing a message on his car promoting spaying and
neutering, Earnhardt could help his many fans understand that they can play a
role in reducing the overpopulation of dogs and cats and drastically reducing
Whether your ride is a stock car or a station wagon, you can
help save the lives of homeless animals by spaying and neutering your own
companions and working to pass
mandatory spay/neuter legislation in your community.
Los Angeles Animal Services (LAAS) recently announced that its
shelters had a "no-kill December," a month during which the
department reportedly "did not euthanize any treatable or healthy animals
in its care." While this certainly sounds
wonderful and is what every animal shelter strives to achieve, one blogger explains
what the numbers really
translate into and how the welfare of animals is disregarded when statistics
become more of a focus than the animals themselves.
Longtime friend to animals,
Phyllis Daugherty, examined what "no-kill December" really meant for
animals who found refuge at LAAS last month and asked, "Are we really to
believe that with no other changes but a change of mind, suddenly all the least
desirable animals were swept from the shelter into 'forever' homes, or even
just to somewhere that they can be assured a humane life?"
While LAAS announced a 90 percent "live-save" rate
for December, this does not mean a 90 percent adoption rate. The term "live-save" means only that the
animals left the shelter, not that they went to qualified, screened homes. As
Daugherty explains, "Often the pet is merely taken to another shelter by 'transport,'
and possibly transported many times to different shelters in different areas in
the country if [he or she] is not adopted. Once the animal has left the L.A.
shelter, [his or her] impound (ID) number may be changed many times, so we
really don't know what ultimately happens to [him or her]."
Just days after Daugherty's article was posted, humane and sheriff's
officials in Oregon raided a self-purported "rescue" where more than
140 dogs were found starving, stuffed into tiny stacked travel carriers amid
their own waste and without access to water, after being "saved" from
euthanasia at an open-admission animal shelter in California. Many were found
with their eyes sealed shut with mucus and pus, and urine and excrement were dripping
onto them from the cages above. One dog was found in a carrier so small that "he
was unable to lie down, sit or stand up." The
Oregonian reported, "Some of the
dogs were in such an advanced state of starvation that technicians will have to
use a 'refeeding program' to reintroduce small amounts of easily digestible food."
Regarding LAAS, Daugherty rightfully asks, "Is this a
sustainable or desirable solution?" When the focus shifts from protecting
animals to playing a numbers game, animals pay the price, bounced around like
rubber balls and often ending up in situations so cruel and harsh that being
"saved" becomes a fate far worse than a painless exit from a world
that has already betrayed them once.
And unlike rubber balls, animals become confused and distressed
when bounced around, often developing severe separation anxiety and other
behavioral symptoms as they are moved from place to place. PETA has
investigated and exposed many hoarder "rescue" facilities—places such as Caboodle Ranch, Angel's
Gate, All Creatures Great and
Small, and other hellholes—where animals end up languishing in criminally cruel
conditions after they have been "saved" from open-admission shelters that
are desperately trying to fend off criticism from an ill-informed public misled
by the "no-kill" movement.
LAAS reports on its Facebook page that during the December effort, compassionate "volunteers
complained that [LAAS was] keeping too many animals. And it did get crowded."
We have to ask why the humane community is so quick to tolerate the suffering
and danger inflicted on animals who are the victims of the "no-kill"
As PETA has stressed for decades—and put its money
where its mouth is by spaying and neutering nearly 90,000 animals at low or no
cost in the past 10 years—the only way that we
can truly hope to become a "no-kill" nation is to work at the roots,
not at the "feel good" treetops. We must first become a no-birth nation through
aggressive spay/neuter initiatives—only then we can truly save lives.
Ne-Yo is making it a happy New Year for animals: The rapper has resolved to go vegan in 2013. When Ne-Yo first tweeted his New Year's resolution, he deemed it a discipline
test. But after he
learned about the cruelty of the meat and dairy industries, he said that there
was "much more meaning to it." PETA sent him vegan
dining expert chef Tal Ronnen's The Conscious Cook: Delicious
Vegan Recipes That Will Change the Way You Eat, a vegetarian/vegan starter
kit, and fellow music legend Paul
McCartney's meat industry exposé, "Glass Walls."
Ne-Yo has been keeping his Twitter
followers up to date on his progress and has received an outpouring of support,
as have animals:
Maybe Ne-Yo will give Anderson Cooper the inspiration that he needs to help him make the switch. When Anderson invited vegan Alan Cumming onto his show, the pair noshed on meat-free chicken wings and Anderson talked
about his vegan aspirations.
friend Kelly Osbourne
says it was her boyfriend, vegan
chef Matthew Mosshart, who helped her drop pounds and feel
better. "That's because he cooks for me! He's a vegan chef so he makes
sure I eat healthily," she says. "I'm happy with how I look now."
Stone and Andrew Garfield
are happy with how their family looks now, with the addition of their new
rescued dog, Ren. They took the pup in as foster parents, but it took the
couple only a few days to make it official. PETA sent Ren a homecoming present
of treats and toys.
To keep up with what all your favorite
stars are doing for animals, follow
@PETA on Twitter.
In Michigan, birth control may be controversial when
it comes to humans, but when it
comes to dogs and cats, it's a no-brainer. As a bill that would restrict birth
control heads to the governor's desk, PETA is proposing to erect this billboard
in the state capital:
It is estimated that 6 to 8
animals enter our nation's
animal shelters every year, and only about half leave them alive because of a
lack of good homes. Countless others never make it to shelters and die on the
streets or at the end of a chain.
The key to ending this suffering
is spaying and neutering
prevent them from producing litter after litter of unwanted animals.
You can help by supporting PETA's fleet of mobile spay-and-neuter
clinics, which have
spayed and neutered more than 80,000 animals at low to no cost in the 11 years
since the first clinic rolled out of our parking lot, preventing the suffering
of hundreds of thousands of unwanted puppies and kittens.
And if you have the time, money,
and resources to care for an animal companion, please adopt from a shelter—never
buy an animal from a pet
store or breeder.
Fun fact: October is National Adopt-a-Shelter-Dog Month. And PETA—always an advocate
for adoption—knows just how you can celebrate: Adopt a dog from a shelter already!
a dog from a pet store or breeder means one fewer home for a dog in a shelter—adding to the millions of dogs and cats who must be euthanized each year for lack of good homes. So PETA
never misses a chance to tell everyone within earshot how adopting dogs from
shelters lowers euthanasia
rates while also saving animals from fighting to survive on the streets. That's a
win-win situation, right there. Plus, shelter dogs are just so darn lovable, so
But don't take our word for it—we've called in the experts
to make the case. Since every month
should honor shelter dogs, here are 14 indisputable reasons why you should always adopt, never buy:
9. & 10.
Emma and Charlee
13. & 14.
Turk and Moe Moe
part of the cast of The Real L Word, Whitney Mixter and Sara Bettencourt are all about being out and proud. And the couple says that it's everyone's responsibility to be out and
proud advocates for animals.
Showtime offers T-shirts that proclaim the wearer's crush on Whitney, she
thinks wearing an animal rights T-shirt is one great way to proclaim that
animals have rights. Whitney dishes on that and other easy ways to never to be silent in her exclusive interview with PETA:
the guardians of three rescued dogs, both ladies keep the real "A" word—adoption—close to their hearts.
"There's no reason to go through a
breeder," Sara says in her PETA interview. "It seems ridiculous to me, and all
these animals that are in shelters need homes, need families, and that needs to
be something that everybody is aware of."
shelters, it hits home: This is very real, animals are being brought in all the
time. And you know, you can do something about it."
more great ways to be an out and proud animal advocate and "do something
about it," visit PETA.org/NeverBeSilent.
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
Follow PETA on Twitter!
Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.