An animal lover celebrates his 104th birthday
News and headlines for April 8 - 14, 2023
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These are some of the stories making headlines in animal protection:
The Iowa House overwhelmingly passed a bill prohibiting local governments from banning specific dog “breeds” and targeting them for extermination. The bill encourages local governments to “instead focus their ordinances on responsible dog ownership.” The bill now goes to the Iowa Senate.
Likewise, the Florida Senate “passed a bill that would strip away the last remaining municipal and public housing restrictions against specific dog breeds — which mostly target pit bulls.” The bill now goes to the Florida House.
Banning dogs based on how they look is immoral. It is also ineffective. That's not just opinion; it's science:
50% of dogs labeled as pit bulls lacked DNA breed signatures of breeds commonly classified as pit bulls;
Dogs targeted for breed discriminatory laws are not more likely to bite, do not bite harder, and such bans do not result in fewer dog bites or bite-related hospitalization rates; and,
Enforcement of a ban is expensive, with no measurable impact on public safety.
Bans also negatively impact surrounding communities and rescue groups, which have to take on the burden of such regressive and selfish policies to save the lives of these dogs.
As more people turn to rescue and adoption and more shelters embrace progressive policies, the number of communities placing over 95% and as high as 99% of the animals is increasing. In Georgia, “The Tift County Animal Shelter has evolved from a facility with an 80-90% euthanasia rate to one with only 4% of animals euthanized.”
This and other communities and national data prove that animals are not dying in pounds because there are too many, too few homes or people don’t want the animals. They are dying because people in those pounds are killing them. Replace those people, implement the No Kill Equation, and we can be a No Kill nation today.
After killing Bowie, a shy, 15-week-old, 10-pound puppy, despite a rescue offer, the Board of Supervisors ordered the Director of the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care & Control to provide a report on how it would achieve No Kill.
Instead of committing to fully implementing the programs and services of the No Kill Equation, the report indicated that LACDACC would largely continue business as usual, including threatening volunteers and rescuers who criticize it and turning away healthy, intact kittens by telling people to leave them on the street.
In response, The No Kill Advocacy Center wrote a letter to the Board of Supervisors demanding action.
AB 595 (Bowie's Law) unanimously passed the California Assembly Business & Professions Committee, despite opposition from nearly every shelter in the state, the National Animal Control Association, the ASPCA, Best Friends, the California State Association of Counties, the League of California Cities, and the Teamsters
A complete list of opponents is available by clicking here.
A spokesperson for the California Animal Welfare Association (CAWA), a lobbying organization for California pounds, testified (falsely) that all shelters already do outreach to rescue groups before killing animals. If that were true (it isn’t), why oppose it? She also called the bill unfair because “no one wants to kill” and “everyone is working toward the same goal.”
Thankfully, Assemblymembers were not swayed. The Committee Vice-Chair responded that nothing the opposition could say could convince him that telling the public and rescuers that an animal needs help is a bad thing. It isn’t, and they deserve it.
Tragically, it is not just California. In Georgia, “Clayton County Animal Control will no longer put out an ‘urgent list’ of animals at the shelter that are close to being euthanized.” Rescuers rely on that list to network and save animals. The pound’s manager says they do not have time to put out the list, but they have plenty of time to kill the animals. So much for “no one wants to kill” and “everyone is working toward the same goal.”
Do you have what it takes to save lives?