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Pit bulls have been bred for centuries to attack other animals.

How many other animals did pit bulls kill in 2014?

by Merritt Clifton Fifty thousand dogs per year, including at least 34,250 pit bulls, attack other animals, according to ANIMALS 24-7 analysis of dog attack data from 2013-2014. Of the 82,000 animal victims per year, 59,000 die; 23,000 survive their injuries. Among the dead are 15,500 dogs, 95% of them attacked by pit bulls, and 6,000 hooved animals, 93% of them attacked by pit bulls. Pit bulls also inflict at least 60% of the 29,000 fatal attacks on domestic birds and small mammals, and at least 60% of the 8,250 fatal attacks on cats. About a third of the fatal dog attacks on domestic birds, small mammals, and cats are by dogs who are not caught and identified,  so might also include … [Read More...]

Inside the Animals Taiwan shelter.  (Animals Taiwan photo)

Taiwan adopts plan to become no-kill nation by 2017

by Merritt Clifton TAIPEI, Taiwan––The Taiwanese legislature, the Legislative Yuan, on January 24, 2015 adopted 25 revisions to the 1998 national Animal Protection Act that are intended to make Taiwan a no-kill nation. The revisions includes a ban on killing impounded dogs, to take effect in 2017. The ban resembles laws in effect in India, Turkey, and Costa Rica. As in those nations, euthanasia will continue to be permitted for incurably ill or injured dogs. Wrote Enru Lin of The China Post, “Kuomintang legislator Wang Yu-min, who sponsored the draft revisions, said the two-year delay was included to prevent sudden overcrowding at shelters. During this waiting period, local … [Read More...]

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Agribusiness plays the bull fiddle while animals burn

         ST. CLOUD, Minnesota––19,000 four-week-old turkeys were killed in a January 19, 2015 barn fire at a Jennie-O complex in Swanville. The fire, of unknown origin, came three weeks after passer-by Wyatt Stueven, 17, was recognized by CBS-Minnesota for helping to rescue four horses from a barn fire in Chatham Township, Minnesota. While … [Read More...]

New study shows the value of slaughter to race horse breeders

SYDNEY, Australia––Newly published Australian research sheds light on the unofficial economic partnership of the race horse breeding and horse slaughter industries. The Australian research does not directly reference the controversy over horse slaughter for human consumption in the U.S., but confirms the importance of slaughter to the economic … [Read More...]

Norm Phelps, 75, spiritual mentor to the animal rights movement

by Merritt Clifton Norm Phelps, 75, died on December 31, 2014 at the Meritus Health Hospital in Hagerstown, Maryland. Phelps had battled myasthenia gravis, an auto-immune neuromuscular condition that causes severe fatigue and weakness, since 2002. A vegan since 1984, survived by his wife and fellow longtime animal advocate Patti Rogers, Phelps … [Read More...]

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Whistleblower exposé of livestock research fuels ag-gag debate

OMAHA, SALT LAKE CITY, KANSAS CITY, OLYMPIA––Publishing a landmark exposé of the little-known U.S. Meat Animal Research Center on January 20, 2015, Michael Moss of The New York Times indirectly racheted up political pressure both for and against “ag-gag” laws. Meant to inhibit undercover investigators and other inside whistleblowers from … [Read More...]

Makar Sankranti cuts birds out of the skies

MUMBAI, PUNE, AHMEDABAD––Preliminary estimates indicate that fewer birds were killed or injured by kite strings during Makar Sankranti 2015 than a year earlier, but the annual Hindu "Festival of the Sun," observed on January 14 this year, remains perhaps as deadly to birds over western India as opening day of hunting season in nations where … [Read More...]

Meet Bo

Meet Bo. Bo, a ten-year-old cattle dog from Michigan by way of Florida, is the ANIMALS 24-7 advance scout, office cat herder, and our eyes and ears on the graveyard shift––at least until he wakes us up. Bo is also a much better fundraiser than I am, unabashedly running up to everyone he meets at the Greenbank Farm off-leash dog park with a … [Read More...]

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Cat from studies at UW-Madison.  (PETA photo)

PETA claims win against cat studies at UW-Madison, but maternal deprivation experiments continue

MADISON, Wisconsin––People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals on January 23, 2015 declared victory in a long-running campaign against cat experiments at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. That returns the focus of protest against animal research at UW-Madison to the resumption of maternal deprivation studies on baby monkeys––an issue that helped to spark the rise of the animal rights … [Read More...]

Martin Luther King Jr. and friend.

What animal advocates owe to the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr.

Civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., 1929-1968, in whose honor we celebrate Martin Luther King Day, never had any visible direct involvement with animals or animal issues––but he is justly remembered among the greatest influences on the animal rights movement of our time, and the many other animal advocacy causes that have splintered from it. Martin Luther King Jr. was of course … [Read More...]

Whatcom Humane Society night drop-off kennels with surrender forms. (Beth Clifton)

Should animal shelters re-open night drop-off kennels?

BELLINGHAM, KENAI––How far apart are the Whatcom Humane Society, of Bellingham, Washington, and the Kenai Animal Shelter, of Kenai, Alaska? Both are just five or ten minutes from airports. Measured in flight time via Alaska Airlines, the distance between them is seven hours, twenty minutes. Both are open-admission, both hold animal control housing contracts, and both are believed by humane … [Read More...]

(Beth Clifton photo)

$37 million verdict ups the ante for pit bull attacks

by Merritt Clifton DECATUR, Georgia––Five years of legal and political history resulting from a March 9, 2010 pit bull attack on then-eight-year-old Erin Ingram gained another chapter on January 12, 2015 when DeKalb County senior judge Matthew Robins overruled a jury award to Ingram of $72 million and instead awarded Ingram and her family almost $37 million. Ingram lost part of one arm, lost … [Read More...]