Written by Michelle Kretzer
We're happy to report a favorable development in this case:
A court has denied a motion by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to
dismiss the lawsuit brought against the agency by PETA, the Animal Legal
Defense Fund (ALDF), and two Fayetteville-area residents seeking to overturn
the USDA's renewal of Jambbas Ranch Tours' license to continue to operate the
wretched roadside zoo that has racked up dozens of violations of the federal
Animal Welfare Act (AWA).
The ruling comes in the wake of the recent high-profile rescue of Ben the bear, who now resides in a spacious habitat at a sanctuary in
California, thanks to the ruling in the earlier lawsuit mentioned below.
PETA's challenge to the licenses will move forward, but the
animals at Jambbas have no time to lose—please urge USDA officials to revoke Jambbas' license
immediately and offer these animals the chance to live out their lives with the kind of
comfort and dignity that Ben now enjoys.
Originally posted on April 19th, 2012:
of Cumberland County, North Carolina, who are sickened by Jambbas Ranch Tours' pervasive neglect and abuse of animals have joined PETA and the Animal Legal
Defense Fund in suing the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) over its renewal
of Jambbas' license despite chronic violations of the Animal Welfare Act (AWA).
AWA allows an animal exhibitor or dealer to have his or her license renewed only
if the person's business operates in accordance with AWA regulations. But the
USDA has repeatedly renewed Jambbas' license despite the fact that every single inspection of the roadside
zoo between October 2006 and January 2012 resulted in citations for AWA violations
including the following:
is the second pending lawsuit involving Jambbas Ranch. The other suit seeks to
have an abused bear named
Ben removed from Jambbas and relocated to a sanctuary where PETA has made arrangements
for him to live. In this sad video, Ben paces in his barren cage, bites the
chain-link fencing, pushes against it, and tries to reach under it—behavior a
bear expert has identified as a cry for help:
asking the USDA not to renew Jambbas' license, PETA also pointed out several
violations of the AWA that relate to Ben, including a lack of adequate space,
which is likely causing his repetitive, abnormal behavior.
is clearly not qualified to possess an AWA license. We will keep you updated as
the lawsuit progresses.
Vegas, one roll of the dice could change your life. But job search website Dice isn't leaving its fate
to chance—the company gave customers who care about animals a
reason to flock to its site by promising never to use great apes in its advertising.
signing PETA's Great Ape Humane Pledge, Dice trumped its competitor CareerBuilder, which is still using
baby apes in its ads—apes who were stolen from their families and beaten to
make them compliant and who will likely be dumped at miserable roadside zoos when they become too
big to control.
that both Dice and Monster have agreed to protect apes, let CareerBuilder
know that its luck is running out.
Written by PETA
PETA is calling upon the U.S. Department of
Agriculture (USDA) to investigate whether the owner of a New Jersey roadside zoo and pet store did enough to prevent a fire
in which two giraffes, up to 15 parrots, and several dogs and cats died. The letter
also asks the USDA, "[I]f this loss of life is found to have
been preventable, … hold Sipp and Animal Kingdom Zoo responsible."
Every day has its
share of tragedy for captive wild animals forced to languish in cramped
enclosures at roadside
and pet stores.
The fire at Animal Kingdom Zoo is the second since April, when a fire killed
Burton Sipp's wife, Bridget. In the latest fire, a mother giraffe and her calf
were locked inside a building, and the mother was crushed to death by a falling
wall, raising questions about the facility's structural integrity. Her calf also
did not live through the night. Indeed, just over two weeks before this lethal
fire, the USDA cited the facility for 19 violations
of the Animal Welfare Act, including
failure to maintain the structural strength of the giraffe enclosure and
numerous other animal enclosures.
Please never visit
roadside zoos or facilities that sell animals. You can also help animals at three roadside zoos—Cherokee Bear Zoo, Chief Saunooke Bear Park, and Santa's Land—by
clicking here to urge officials to close these dilapidated facilities.
by Heather Faraid Drennan
For years, a lone declawed bear named Ben has been confined around the clock to a cramped, barren pen at Jambbas Ranch Tours, a seedy roadside zoo in Fayetteville, North Carolina. Ben paces back and forth over and over again and bites the chain-link walls of his cage, pushes against them, and reaches his paws under them. A bear expert who reviewed footage of Ben for PETA explained that with these sad behaviors, Ben is trying to tell us something—he wants out!
PETA has been in contact with Cumberland County officials since last summer, requesting the enforcement of a county law that prohibits the possession of bears, raccoons, foxes, and alligators. Jambbas owner James Bass has all these types of animals in his possession, and he keeps them in substandard, miserable conditions. But so far, no action has been taken. In fact, PETA recently learned that rather than enforcing the law, Cumberland County commissioners amended the ordinance in an attempt to exempt Jambbas at Bass' request.
PETA has arranged for Ben and some of the other illegally possessed animals to go to sanctuaries where they will receive the care that they deserve, but charges against Bass may be dismissed in light of this recent ordinance change. Now it is up to Cumberland County District Attorney William West to prosecute Bass when he appears in court on April 11. You can help by contacting District Attorney William West and encouraging him to uphold the law and send these animals to sanctuaries.
Written by Michelle Sherrow
For a monstrously successful job search, skip CrueltyBuilder and check out our cool new banner ad for Monster.
Why are we giving Monster top billing on our website? Because Monster successfully brings together employers and job seekers—of the human variety—and leaves abused animal actors out of the picture. Monster's awesome animatronic fiddling beaver ad is a huge YouTube hit.
Maybe Monster chose inanimate "actors" because it is aware that animal actors are torn away from their mothers as infants; subjected to abusive training methods; forced to spend most of their lives in small, filthy cages deprived of everything that is natural and important to them; and often dumped at seedy roadside zoos. Or maybe Monster is just as innovative with its ads as it is with its job services.
If you're searching for a job and you happen to be a human, check out Monster.com. And let CareerBuilder know that people want jobs, animals don't.
You could hear a collective sigh of relief throughout the PETA building when outgoing Ohio Governor Ted Strickland signed an executive order banning people from owning, selling, breeding, or trading wild animals. The move came after several incidents in which frustrated captive animals attacked their keepers.
The order also required current owners of exotic animals to register the animals annually, and it prevented people from keeping exotic animals if they had been convicted of animal abuse or neglect or if their license to exhibit, breed, or possess animals had been revoked. This provision of the law meant that notorious animal abusers such as Sam Mazzola (whose Animal Welfare Act license was revoked in 2008), could no longer keep the exotic animals who were suffering in their care.
But now, the new governor, John Kasich, has requested that the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) not enforce the ban. Instead, he would like the agency to further study the issue and decide how to keep Ohio residents safe without hurting "small business owners" (read: exotic-animal pimps). The ODNR website states that Kasich "is aware that there are questions and concerns by the public and small business owners regarding the emergency rules."
Don't let dealers of exotic animals keep Ohio from enforcing this important ban. It will protect Ohio residents and keep wild animals out of backyards and dismal roadside zoos. Please e-mail Governor Kasich and urge him and the ODNR to enforce this crucial ban.
A Tucson, Arizona, restaurant owner has decided that the best way to drum up business for his taco stand is to serve lion meat. Hasn't he ever heard of coupons? About six months ago, Bryan Mazon, owner of Boca Tacos y Tequila, started featuring what he calls Exotic Taco Wednesdays, during which he serves up turtle, kangaroo, alligator, python, and other exotic animals. Now, in a move that we're pretty sure would make Mufasa toss him right off of Pride Rock, Mazon wants to serve tacos made with lion meat.
As appalling as this idea is, it gets worse: Those tacos may include someone's former "pet." Lion meat in the U.S. comes from lions who have spent their lives in backyard cages, zoos, pseudo-sanctuaries, roadside menageries, and circuses. When the novelty of keeping them wears off or when zoos need to make room for cute new babies, lions are sold at auction, where they may be purchased by slaughterhouses or canned hunting ranches.
Mazon says he has heard from protesters and people who want to know if serving meat from exotic animals is legal. (Unfortunately, it is, if the species in question isn't endangered.) "In all reality, what I want is just people to know that I'm here," he said. "That's the way to do it." Really? Funny, because I bet loads more people have heard of yummy and meat-free Boca burgers than have heard of you. Hmmm.
When it comes to weekday talk-show fare, it's no surprise that I'm partial to Ellen and Oprah. Today, however, some props go out to Tyra Banks for following up on a feature that set off alarm bells here at PETA.
A few days ago, The Tyra Banks Show aired a segment about a woman who gushed about her "pet" capuchin monkey. Sure, capuchins are cute and smart, but the "Joe Blows" who buy baby monkeys soon realize that they cannot control the strong animals after they outgrow their diapers. Case in point: Oprah's recent interview with Charla Nash, who barely survived an attack by her friend's 15-year-old chimpanzee, Travis. And while capuchins are much smaller than chimpanzees, they are still very strong and very fast, and they have extremely sharp canines that can quickly do a great deal of damage to an unwitting person.
Consequently, many monkeys are discarded at pseudo-sanctuaries and shoddy roadside zoos because there simply aren't enough reputable sanctuaries to care for them all. Some species can live to be well into their 50s, and many primates who are abandoned by their "owners" face decades of misery in appalling conditions.
We wrote to Tyra Banks to express our concern that some viewers might be tempted to purchase a monkey of their own after seeing the segment on her show. We're heartened to learn that she's added a warning on her Web site stating, "Please note, PETA has contacted the show and does not recommend keeping monkeys as pets."
Folks, please let other people know that when it comes to capuchins and other exotic animals, the most humane action is always: "Monkey see, monkey do … not buy one!"
Written by Karin Bennett
Earlier this year, Travis, a 15-year-old "pet" chimpanzee, was stabbed repeatedly, pounded with a shovel, and finally shot to death after he attacked a Connecticut woman named Charla Nash. Yesterday, Ms. Nash, who has been in a hospital since the attack, appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show and spoke for the first time about her recovery. During the show, Nash declared her readiness to move on and said that she had an optimistic outlook on the future.
The images of Nash are shocking, her buoyant hopefulness is inspiring, and both of those points should prompt another look at Travis' trajectory from his days as a baby chimpanzee to his years as a confined adult "pet." Travis, who appeared in several commercials when he was an infant, was just one of many exotic animals who have been torn away from their mothers at a young age in order to be raised by people who don't fully understand their needs.
Once chimpanzees reach adolescence, they become too strong and aggressive for their guardians to handle. They are then often abandoned at roadside zoos or—as was the case with Travis—stay in the home of a person who remains unaware of their tremendous strength until it's too late.
Chimpanzees and other exotic animals were never meant to be confined to people's homes, and keeping them as "pets" can often be lethal to both the animals and those who live near them.
Written by Logan Scherer
Rain from Hurricane Ida is bearing down hard on us here in Norfolk, Virginia. And while we have recently been alerted that the post office might not be delivering our mail, (whatever happened to "rain or shine," guys?) at PETA, we don't let a little inclement weather keep us from saving animals!
We hope that everyone is keeping their furry friends warm and safe inside today. Check out PETA's tips for safeguarding animals during a hurricane and always be sure that you're prepared when a bit of weather comes your way!
Written by Shawna Flavell
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.
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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.