Thursday, December 20, 2012

License Plate Propaganda

You remember PETA, the people who would rather kill dogs and cats than find them homes? Yep, aren't they just too precious. We've blogged about them here on many occasions. Check out for some eye-popping truth about the underlying evil nature of PETA.

In 2007, PETA employee Jane Garrison, her buddy Judie Mancuso and their husbands formed an animal rights group in California. They called it “Social Compassion in Legislation”. The goal? Agitate for spay and neuter laws in the state of California. The method? A relentless political campaign for spay-neuter legislation, enabled by well-planned  propaganda to promote public acceptance.

The left wing slant in the state of California has gotten so out of control that we actually had Judie Mancuso, a PETA supporter and founder of “Social Compassion”, recently appointed to the California Veterinary Medical Board! Fresh from her crusades sponsoring failed bills that would have required all pets in the state of California be sterilized, Mancuso continues to push her anti-pet breeding agenda from a position of authority as a member of the CVMB.

“Social Compassion” was behind two recent onerous pieces of proposed legislation; AB 1634 and SB 250. The former would have required all pets in the state to be sterilized, with a few narrow exemptions. The latter would have required mandatory sterilization and would have also prohibited the sales of unaltered dogs and cats. Several other animal rights groups also joined Social Compassion in official support of these bills.

So far, our state legislature has rejected this proposed intrusion into pet owners' rights to choose their pet's reproductive status. However, with a newly-elected Democratic supermajority in both the California Senate and Assembly, the next legislative push for spay-neuter laws will likely be successful. Meantime, as the animal rights groups strategize their next move, the focus has temporarily shifted to spreading propaganda.

And what better way to spread propaganda than on the back ends of thousands of cars?

Almost two years ago, "Social Compassion" began a push to mass produce a California spay-neuter license plate. With "Social Compassion" founder Mancuso sitting on the California Veterinary Medical Board, it was easy to solicit CVMB support for this license plate program. A minimum threshold of 7500 orders is required to begin production of special license plates; that's the break-even on the expenses of printing up special license plates. Yet today, many months later, the animal rights groups can't quite manage to sell the minimum amount of spay-neuter license plates. They desperately pushed a bill attempting to get themselves a special exemption to reduce the numbers of pre-orders down to 2500 to get their “pet project” rolling. When that effort failed, they introduced another bill, AB 610, that passed and successfully extended their pre-order deadline for another year, until June 2013.

Why there's some of the perps now!!

Now mind you, our state has nearly 40 million residents, yet the spay-neuter fanatics can't seem to find more than about 6,300 people gullible enough to pre-order this special license plate. That's only 0.016% of the population, or less than 1 in 6200 people. Understandable, because not only is this plate UGLY, but this license plate promotes the urban legend that sterilization is healthy and beneficial.

Seems that “Social Compassion”, PETA and the HSUS are devoting a great deal of time and effort to promoting these license plates. But don't be fooled; propaganda is the top priority; they don't care about actually funding any pet clinics; nor finding homes for shelter animals; nor setting up programs and policies that help people keep pets in their homes. The priority is to push lies about “overpopulation”and the presumed need for widespread pet sterilization.

This week, “Social Compassion” sent out an email blast with a special offer. Pierce Brosnan, the Hollywood actor/artist who designed the license plate, is offering to PAY for a free license plate for anyone who wants one. He is being joined in this offer by Katherine Heigl, another Hollywood celebrity nutjob. Heigl recently set up a website in support of animal neutering proclaiming “I hate balls”. ( This website demonstrates how misguided, sick, twisted and desperate these animal rights nuts are.
A friend of mine who spoke out against the license plate program received this note by email:

“Can't figure out what was wrong with AB 1634. Also can't figure out what is wrong with the California Pet Lover's license plate. Proceeds from the plate provide funding for free or low-cost spay and neuter surgeries across California and do not go to PETA or HSUS. They also help to raise awareness about the importance of spaying and neutering.”

“I want to emphasize that the sponsor of this program is the California Veterinary Medical Board. Yes, HSUS is listed as one of the “supporters” but there are many other supporters...None of these supporters receive financial benefit from this license plate program. Proceeds from the plate would provide funding for free or low-cost spay & neuter surgeries across California. They will also help to raise awareness about the importance of spaying and neutering. So, its up to you to decide whether you want to show an “ugly” and distinct license plate in support of what I think is a worthwhile endeavor … And you can get it now for free!”

Uh, OK. Where do we begin to address what is “wrong” here?

First off, if Brosnan and Heigl were really interested in spay and neuter as a presumed cure for the imaginary problem of pet overpopulation, their money would be much better spent in directly providing for free spay and neuter clinics. But no, their main interest is advocacy for the cause of animal rights; the elimination of pet breeding and strictly limiting pet ownership. Brosnan is also seeking the ego boost of seeing his great art masterpiece plastered about the state.

Secondly, there is no guarantee that any funds beyond the cost of production will go to any spay-neuter program. ZIP. ZILCH. NADA.

IF there are profits from the license plate program, the sponsoring agencies collect the money in a License Plate Fund. Per the text of the agreement “ the sponsoring agency shall expend all funds received under this section exclusively for projects and programs that promote the agency's official policy, mission, or work.” And, "to allow the Veterinary Medical Board to support the critically important efforts of city and county animal shelters to address serious animal care and control problems facing the state."

You may have noticed that the words “spay-neuter program” are nowhere to be found. Imagine that!

The VMB may collect the profits and use them as they see fit. Why, they could even decide to funnel that money to [wink wink] Mancuso's “Social Compassion” group.

Funny thing about "Social Compassion" is that those who work for them are unpaid “volunteers”. Volunteers who have endless resources and time to travel thousands of miles back and forth across the state of California, to produce multiple propaganda websites, to lobby incessantly in Sacramento and at the local levels. Mancuso owns a lovely house near the ocean in Laguna Beach. How does she pay her mortgage? How does she support her lobbying lifestyle? Perhaps now that she is on the CVMB, Mancuso does actually receive some sort of salary, but where has her support come from in the past? It can only be from animal rights groups such as HSUS and PETA. They are paying her for her tireless work toward the extinction of pet ownership and breeding.

It is disgusting that an unscrupulous lobbyist like Mancuso has wormed her way into an influential position in state government. It's galling and appalling that this woman, a vegan animal rights fanatic, has weaseled her way onto the California Veterinary Medical Board.

The admitted goal of animal rights groups behind these initiatives is NO BREEDING. They prefer to force us to import mutts from other countries, especially from nearby Mexico, but also from as far away as Taiwan, the Caribbean and Europe. These dogs are often street dogs who bring with them other special bonuses like parvo and rabies. So you can forget about finding an intentionally-bred healthy puppy, a purebred dog, or a “designer” dog bred on purpose, if the animal rights groups have their way. Breeding laws here in the US are now so restrictive that it is difficult to find a puppy of any sort....purebred or street-bred. And in an animal shelter? No puppies. When they occasionally enter they are stolen by staff, snapped up by “rescues” and sometimes even raffled to the highest bidder.

Despite being touted by animal rights groups as being “healthy”, sterilization surgery, especially when performed while the dog or cat is immature, is ironically responsible for many health problems..... everything from spay incontinence, to a depressed immune system, hypothyroidism, and orthopedic disorders as a result of abnormal bone development. This is just the tip of the iceberg; we have detailed many of those problems here in the past, check our tags “spay/neuter” and "rethinking spay neuter".

These license plate proclaim "Spay-Neuter Saves Lives"? There is absolutely NO data to support such a ridiculous claim. Spay-neuter is certainly not a "PRO LIFE" agenda. It is ANTI BIRTH. And it is certainly not "PRO CHOICE." The extremists want to take the CHOICE of spay-neuter away from the person who owns the animal.

Considering the adverse health effects of spay-neuter, we should use the existing excellent tools readily available for doggie birth control. They are called DOORS and LEASHES. These amazing tools are very reasonably priced. Even low-income individuals have access to them. As an added benefit, these great tools are highly effective in preventing death from a car or a coyote. They also work perfectly to prevent your dog from chasing the neighbor's cat or using the neighbor's lawn for a toilet.

Where is the license plate educating about the need to confine your pet? I sincerely doubt that Judie Mancuso, Pierce Brosnan, Katherine Heigl or anyone at PETA or HSUS give a flying fig about your dog being hit by a car.

And then there is the obvious disingenous nature of this offer. If these celebrities and PETA people really do want to subsidize spay and neuter clinics, why don't they just open some up themselves? Or donate directly to those already in existence? We all know the real agenda here. Propaganda regarding spay and neuter is the priority. Control the public psyche and you win the debate. The public must fervently and earnestly believe in “pet overpopulation” in order for the animal rights groups to pass more laws regulating pet ownership and breeding rights. If state-sponsored license plates urge us to support spay-neuter, it reinforces the public perception that more laws are necessary to address a “problem”.

And if you believe in the notion of supposed “overpopulation”, then do I have a bridge to sell you.

Check our posts on this blog for articles that blast the notion of “pet overpopulation” right out of the water.

Sunday, December 16, 2012


Dog breeding is illegal in most states and most localities. For that matter, so is owning a kennel. Or even owning a dog, in most places.

What? Don't be ridiculous! I'm a licensed breeder! I have a kennel license! My dog is licensed!!

Do you understand what a "license" IS?

A license is special permission from the government to perform an act or conduct an activity that is otherwise illegal.

So the truth is -- dog breeding is illegal, having a kennel is illegal, and even owning a single dog is illegal. Some people get special permission to perform this otherwise-illegal act. But the cost of the permission (license) is often prohibitive, if not for itself, then for the mechanical requirements (what you have to build) and/or the conditional use permits (another form of government permission to do something with your own property, that would otherwise be illegal... such as own a kennel).

According to municipal estimates, 75% or more of all dogs are unlicensed. And I'd hazard that 90% of all hobby breeders are keeping and breeding dogs illegally -- at the very least, in excess of their license (which is to say, their limited grant of immunity from prosecution). Which means -- breeding or even possessing any of those dogs is illegal.

Next time you complain about all those terrible unlicensed kennels, think about who that really is, and that what you're really asking for is that ALL dog breeding and ownership be declared illegal -- except for those special individuals granted a license by the government.

And when you declare that "most of those breeders shouldn't be licensed anyway" ... consider that as the regulatory noose continues to tighten, someday you too might not be considered good enough to get that special permission to breed and own dogs.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

GMO - Hazard or Hype?

GMO foods – should we be worried? What about all that GMO corn in the kibble we feed our dogs?

There has been a modern movement in opposition to foods that are genetically modified. Here in California, there was recently a proposition presented to the voters that would have required labeling of foods that contained materials derived as a result of genetic engineering. I am genuinely surprised that prop 37 didn't pass, because usually the electorate votes based on emotion, not logic. Additionally, European countries have "banned" (if it were possible to physically do so) GMO foods to appease the fears of their populace. However, a bit of research on genetic engineering might surprise you regarding the benefits of such methods.

What is “genetic modification” of foods? The process involves the science of splicing genes into the DNA of the original organism. Sounds ominous, right? Some of these genes are from related organisms, like other plants. Some of the genes are from completely unrelated organisms, like bacteria. Now before you get too upset at the prospect of genes being added where they seemingly don't belong, consider this. All plants and animals derive a large proportion of their existing DNA from viruses that infected their ancestors. (1)

Genetic modification of foods can confer on them a desired quality without waiting for random chance/mutation from nature to help out (which may never occur).

The best example is the papaya crop. The Hawaiian papaya crop was nearly wiped out in the 1990s by the ringspot virus. There does not exist a cure or a preventive treatment for this virus. Genetic modification produced a papaya resistant to the virus, and today, >80% of the Hawaiian papaya crop is the GMO variety. With absolutely NO evidence that there is any harm to anyone from eating a papaya, or consuming foods made with the enzyme papain which is derived from papayas, why should every papaya and every prepared food containing papain (meat tenderizers etc) be labelled for consumers to reject out of unfounded fears?

Crops have been modified in the laboratory to enhance desired traits, such as resistance to herbicides or improved nutritional content. Some are bred for drought tolerance, increased crop amount or size of grain/fruit, and improved shelf life. There is even a variety of rice that has been genetically modified to be yellow, and loaded with healthy beta-carotene. Nice!

Admittedly, herbicide resistant crops are problematic because then farmers tend to spray more weed-killers, which are not desirable to have in our foods, but one can always look for labelled "organic" produce to avoid that. But it is not the modified food itself that may be bad for us, it's the herbicides that are thrown on top on the crops.

There has been a much-touted study done on the effect of GMO corn on rats; this study has even been cited by health groups like Kaiser healthcare in their health newsletter. However, researcher bias was evident and the study was profoundly flawed. The study used very small sample sizes of only ten animals per group, including the control group. WAY too small to produce any reliable results. They also used a strain of rats prone to develop cancer. Oddly enough, the study found that rats who consumed the largest amount of GMO foods lived the longest, and it also showed that rats who consumed the most Roundup (herbicide) lived the longest! The control group also developed cancer, but the moderate GMO consumption group developed a higher percentage of cancer than the control group. This study is, in effect, BUNK. (2)

On the other hand, there are multiple independent studies done on GMO foods that verify their safety. Many of these studies have been conducted independently of the biotech and food industries. (3)

Another example of unfounded fears is the modification of crops for worm-resistance. Many crops have been modified with genes from Bt. Bt, or Bacillus thuringiensis, is a bacteria that has been applied to crops for decades as a natural pest control. It selectively kills worms and guess what, it is completely nontoxic to humans and other animals. Actually, the use of Bt is considered compatible with organic gardening! Bt is applied to crops right up to the day of harvest. You have eaten Bt for years!!! I myself use Bt on my tomatoes to kill the darn nasty green hornworms.

There is a particular chemical in the Bt bacteria that causes worms's digestive systems to fail and subsequently kills them. Scientists have been able to isolate that particular protein, insert the gene that produces it into the plant so that it will produce it without having us spray the crops with Bt (a hit-or-miss process, and economically impractical for anyone with a large-scale agricultural operation). et Voila Natural crop resistance to worms!

Most genetically modified crops are sold as commodities, which are further processed into foodstuffs. Large amounts of soy are produced for use as livestock feed. If there were something harmful in those foods, our animals used for meat would be dropping in droves, as would we for eating them.

Vegetable oil used for frying, cooking, shortening, margarine, sauces, soups, mayonnaise etc is produced almost exclusively from GMO-derived crops. These ingredients go into almost all of our foods!! However, the refining process removes proteins produced by the genes that have been inserted, and leaves just oil.

To give you an example of how widespread GMO foods are, at last tally, 95% of the US soybean crop is genetically modified. 93% of the US canola crop is genetically modified. 86% of the US corn crop is genetically modified, while 95% of sugar beets are genetically modified. 93% of the cotton crop (cottonseed oil) is GM cotton. In addition, pollen from the genetically modified types crosses with neighboring non-GMO crops, making it practically impossible to definitely pronounce that any certain crop is absent GM genes. The vast majority of our foods would have to be labelled that they are derived from genetic engineering.

The FDA does need to promote standardized testing for such crops, in order to make sure that along with the desired trait there are not other problems included, such as increased allergens for those who are sensitive.

Remember, those people who produce the crops eat food too. They would be foolish to introduce something risky into the food chain that their own families will be eating.

Proposition 37 would have required labelling and the ability to bring suit without any proof of damages if they allege a food is improperly labelled. This seemed to me to be nothing more than a shakedown effort by trial lawyers for easy money. And it would have promoted unfounded fears about foods.


Friday, November 2, 2012

Animal welfare is animal rights.

Don't believe me? I'll prove it to you. Better yet, I'll let you prove it to me.

But I don't believe in animal rights.

Okay, fine. But do you believe standards of animal care should be regulated or legislated?

Well, every animal has a right to--

Wait a minute. You said you don't believe in animal rights.

I don't.

So then, back to legislating or regulating standards of care. Why do so?

Because animals have a right to--

There's that word "rights" again.

It's just a word. I meant--

Laws are just words. Regulations are just words. Words define how we live, how we behave, how we think, what we believe. Dictating standards of animal welfare -- that's giving rights to animals. A right to food, a right to shelter, a right to medical care, and if you don't provide your animals with those rights, those words will put you in jail.

But shouldn't everyone have to take care of their animals?

Sure -- of their own will. Because it's the ethical thing to do. 

Not because the animal has rights provided by law.

Not unless you actually believe in animal rights.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Sounds of Silence

Sounds of Silence
The Future of Pets in America
Carole Raschella
Director, California Federation of Dog Clubs

For the past three decades or so, unlike any other country in the civilized world, the United States has been brainwashed into believing that the only good pet is a sterilized pet. No one with even a rudimentary knowledge of biology has ever thought to question the outcome of this bizarre idea, and we are now beginning to suffer the consequences.  There is now a shortage of pets in many parts of the country, although so far, this truth is obscured by several factors. Shelters with an overflow are transporting animals to fill the demand, as are rescue groups, many of which are also bringing in strays from other countries. In addition, hundreds of thousands of dogs are imported every year from third world countries, and thousands more are smuggled in across the border.

The source of this ideology is the Humane Society of the United States, the best known of several extremist animal rights groups, all of which have the same agenda, to eradicate animals from our lives. Their strategy is to work within the political system to lobby for seemingly innocuous, seemingly beneficial, laws, which are designed to make pet ownership more difficult, more expensive and ultimately out of reach. The irony is that, under the guise of helping animals, these groups are funded by those with the most to lose. America’s misguided pet owners.

The most obvious of these laws is the popularity of mandatory spay/neuter legislation. In a country which is already conditioned to spay or neuter its pets, encouraging laws to make sterilization a requirement and not a choice has generally been well-received. Owners who pay a discriminatory high fee to keep their dogs intact find they no longer have a choice. If these owners also breed their dogs, permission to do so now requires an expensive permit, as well as stringent kennel requirements, which, if the current APHIS proposal to the USDA is enacted, will be impossible to meet, and will end most home breeding of healthy American dogs.

Many other regulations are becoming common due to HSUS pressure. Certain breeds, usually pit bulls or any dog that resembles one, are now banned in many areas as dangerous, and other breeds are gradually being added to that list. In addition, an increasing number of apartment owners and housing associations refuse to allow pets, and recreational areas that once welcomed them are no longer doing so.

The latest, and possibly most oppressive, attacks are on the sale and transfer of pets. Most pet shops are no longer allowed to sell live animals at all, which removes an option for pet buyers, and the most recent attempt is to forbid sales of pets sight unseen, supposedly intended to prevent internet sales by suspected “puppy mills,” but also affecting breeders who sell their puppies to buyers in other states.

Last year in the California legislature, Senator Ted Lieu introduced AB1122, a bill which would prevent the sale or transfer of animals in public places, a law which would, among many other things, create difficulties for those who prefer not to allow strangers into their private homes. Fortunately, although the proposal passed through the various committees and was approved by both houses, Governor Schwarzenegger refused to sign it, saying that he was “concerned with the scope and unintended consequences of this bill and that it does not assure the humane and ethical treatment and welfare of animals.”

Undeterred by our former Governor's comments, Senator Lieu revived his proposal the following year as SB917, and this time got it pushed through successfully. In the meantime, Los Angeles Animal Services has devised its own way of creating obstacles to the process by imposing a newly created “Transfer Permit” of 120.00 on anyone who sells, transfers or gives away an animal. So, if  Susie wants to give a kitten to her dear aunt in San Diego and arranges to meet her halfway at a restaurant, it will cost her 120.00 for the privilege of doing so. Her other option, I suppose, would be to leave the cat at her local shelter, which would cost her nothing. They’ll even kill it for free. Unintended consequences.

Where will it end? Will we continue to fumble along, ignoring what is going on around us, perhaps expecting someone else to take care of it, until the day comes when we are ready for that next obedience prospect, that conformation hopeful, or just a new pet for the family…and instead of the charming squeals of a puppy, all we get is a resounding silence?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Lieu the Panderer

Letter sent to California Senator Ted Lieu today.

How hypocritical that Senator Lieu would oppose hunting with hounds due to his misguided and mistaken opinion that it's cruel to the dogs and/or the bears, yet defend shark finning because of supposed racial connections. I don't care what kind of soup people wish to consume. What is horrific is the way shark fins are obtained. I assumed Senator Lieu isn't concerned about living sharks having their fins amputated, after which their finless bodies are thrown back into the water to drown.

As for SB 1221, it seems to me to be an abuse of power for our legislators to step in regarding policies which come under the purview of California Fish and Game Commission, policies which are determined by science and logic, and by experts on the subject. It is not appropriate for senators and other public officials to make decisions based on input from avowed anti-hunting extremist groups such as the HSUS, decisions that will likely result in harm t o the animals involved. The use of dogs to tree animals that pose a danger to humans is an efficient and humane method of wildlife management, and the California Fish and Game Commission is the appropriate agency to make determinations regarding such methods.

As for the abhorrent cruelty to sharks involved in the finning process, using racial preferences as an excuse for such behavior is spurious and deceptive. I have no objection to shark FISHING, only to the mutilation of live animals in shark FINNING.

By the way, I doubt if the Chinese emperors who so valued shark fin soup were aware that it has a high concentration of a BMAA neurotoxin, which can cause neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's and ALS, in humans. If Senator Lieu really cares about the races he purports to be defending, perhaps he should pass that message along to them.

Carole Raschella

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Anti-hunting bill passed by California legislature

SB 1221 is on to the governor. Voting went mostly right down party lines; Democrats AYE Republicans NO. (Except turncoat Strickland, wonder how much $$$ the HSUS greased his palm with?)
Tell me again about how both parties are the same?
We need to BOOT these legislators OUT of office and for those who remain in power, they need to be cut back to part-time status.
TOPIC: Mammals: use of dogs to pursue bears and bobc
DATE: 08/27/2012
MOTION: Unfinished Business SB1221 Lieu Concurrence
(AYES  22. NOES  13.)  (PASS)


Alquist Calderon Corbett De León
DeSaulnier Evans Hancock Hernandez
Kehoe Leno Lieu Liu
Lowenthal Negrete McLeod Padilla Pavley
Price Simitian Steinberg Strickland
Vargas Yee


Anderson Berryhill Blakeslee Cannella
Dutton Fuller Gaines Harman
Huff La Malfa Walters Wolk


Correa Emmerson Rubio Runner

Friday, July 20, 2012

Truth is Treason in the Empire of Lies

"Truth is treason in the empire of lies" Ron Paul
A friend of mine contacted Main Line Animal Rescue to enquire about their campaign in support of the newly-proposed USDA-APHIS regulations. She composed a very thoughtful letter with various well-articulated arguments about the perils of over-regulation:
In a message dated 7/20/2012 10:28:14 A.M. katiedid writes:
Why – if you are going after large-scale commercial breeders, are the numbers SO low in the proposed bill?  As there is no legal entity of a 'puppy mill", how do you feel justified in using the term for anyone who has more than 4 dogs???  Explain to me just WHERE the next generation of dogs will come from if all breeding is stopped?  Also explain, due to the economy, just how you think hobby breeders (who, by the way, do NOT make a profit) are going to be able to afford their breeding programs?  Also please explain, IF there are too many animals in our local shelters – then why are they importing from Mexico and other countries?  AND – why are they counting feral cats as part of the problem – when they have an important niche in the environmental hierarchy?  The feral cats help keep the rat population under control.  Remember them?  That animal was one of the main reasons many people died in the Middle (aka Dark) Ages – they spread the dreaded Bubonic Plague.
I met a smart young man about 5 years ago who asked me – IF all the dogs and cats are "fixed" so they can't have any puppies or kittens, then just WHERE am I going to get my puppy when I'm old enough????  I didn't have an answer for him.  You are against animal abuse – so are all hobby breeders.  Yet – you and your "friends" are on the HSUS  bandwagon to eliminate ALL breeding.  Do you not understand that if there are NO intact dogs – then the outcome will be NO puppies?  Do you not comprehend that PETA and HSUS are now essentially the same organization with the same agenda – NO domestic animals and everyone WILL be vegan?
 Regards –
In response, she received:
From: []
Sent: Friday, July 20, 2012 7:39 AM
To: katie
Your email contains many inaccuracies and nonsensical allegations.  Please remove me from your email list.
Not signed, with no response to the many well-considered points she politely presented. Not one to back down from Animal Rights nuts with no facts on their side:
In a message dated 7/20/2012 11:31:02 A.M. Eastern Daylight Time, katie writes:
Really??  What inaccuracies and nonsensical allegations?  All makes total sense to me – but then, I have studied the problem and researched what is happening – rather than blindly swallowing the drivel from the ARses.  This so proves what I thought.  You're unwilling to think, you totally believe you are experts, and you're unwilling to recognize that maybe YOU are the cause of some or many of our problems.  Thank you so much for enlightening me.  Don't worry – you are NOT on my email list and I won't be contacting you again.  However – I will be letting my friends and anyone else know that you are really a fraud and NOT interested in helping the animals.  I do hope you get your jollies and assuage your own egos.
 Shame on you
From: []
Sent: Friday, July 20, 2012 8:52 AM
To: Katie
What I'm not interested in doing is wasting my time with your nonsense.  If you say or write anything untrue about our organization, be warned, we will contact our attorneys.  Please do not respond or contact me again.  If you do it will be considered harassment. 
Mind you, this is the group that owns the domain name ""; they aren't exactly open-minded on the issue of the right to keep intact animals and breed them. When confronted with facts and shown the error of their ways, there is not even a perfunctory defense of their malicious and counterproductive actions.  Just straight for the jugular….threatening a lawsuit for….telling the TRUTH about them? What a crock of shit.
So, being a great friend, and more than willing to fan the flames of a righteously indignant fire, I volunteered to post the interchange here for all to see.
 This group should really be called "Main Line Animal Rights Fanatics"; or perhaps even "Junkies for Tabloid Journalism". They drum up support for their cause through the use of Main Line Melodrama. Remember the Oprah Winfrey show on so-called "puppy mills"? That was produced by Main Line AR Fanatics in conjunction with….you guessed it…none other than Wayne Pacelle himself, the high priest of the cult of the Humane Society of the US. Ritual animal abuse and animal sacrifice are the instruments typically played in their melodramatic performances. MainLiners exposed abusive breeders, but did nothing to turn them in to the local authorities which would have forced them to either clean up their act or shut down. No, it plays a lot better when they have plenty of abused dogs to "rescue". No donations without them!
MainLiners were also involved with the Murder Hollow Bassets raid, where the Animal Control and Rescue Nazis stole her dogs.  All cruelty charges against Wendy Willard were eventually dismissed, but in the meantime one of her dogs DIED under the "care" of the SPCA from botch neuter surgery. And, as is typical in all of these animal seizure cases, the dogs were never returned to the owner who was absolved of wrongdoing. She was acquitted but still lost her precious dogs. No true justice was served in this case...particularly not for the dogs who never returned home and who died.
So, see, not necessary to say anything untrue about MLAR, their actions speak for themselves. So SUE ME, Mainliners. I dare ya.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics

There is an often-repeated mantra of the AR groups that 25% of dogs entering shelters are purebred. This claim is based on a shelter survey that was done decades ago, when shelter demographics were considerably different than they are today.

This study of a handful of shelters lists the numbers of purebred dogs entering shelters at 29 percent. However, this is a study limited to 12 shelters and only the owner-relinquished dogs were assessed. Please note that only 5% of cats were purebred. Averaged out, that is a rate of only about 12-13% purebred animals, considering that cats outnumber dogs in shelters by almost a 2-to-1 margin.

A similar previous survey found the percent of purebred dogs in shelter intakes at 7.3 percent (reported by Nassar, Talboy, and Moulton, 1992, American Humane Association)

In fact, there is no definitive way to ID a dog by breed. Breed is something that we presume depending on whether or not the animals can reproduce their same type. Even DNA testing is unreliable. Pedigrees and DNA for parental match are helpful, but breed ID is uncertain at best. Even asking the owner about their relinquished pet’s breed is not accurate, as owners may report their animal as purebred when it isn’t. It’s human nature to want to tag your pet as belonging to a breed. “My dog is a Chihuahua”…commonly heard by shelters as they receive a small dog that is not purebred by a longshot. But, he LOOKS like a Chihuahua, so they've always referred to him that way. They don't even know where he came from, they found him. Or they got him from a neighbor who had a litter and doesn't know exactly who the sire was. Hmmm.

Another baloney statistic bandied about by the animal rights kooks is the number of intact animals entering shelters. The ASPCA claims that 90% of intakes are intact animals.

Firstly, it is only possible to see by visual inspection if a dog was surgically neutered. No one bothers to check to see whether a dog with all his original equipment is actually fertile. As for a bitch, it is not possible to know for sure by external visual inspection whether she is intact or spayed. Even surgical scars, if present, are meaningless, as there are other surgical procedures done other than sterilization. Hard to believe, I know!! And the pre-pubertal spays that are so in vogue right now leave almost invisible marks. Many a shelter pet has been opened up for a spay, only to find that OOPS she has already been spayed.

Shelters workers in most cases presume to know the reproductive status of pets by simply looking at them. When it comes to trap-neuter and release prorams for feral cats, it is a common practice to notch the ear prior to release so that, if picked up again, they’ll know it’s already been neutered. If it were easy to tell if a cat was neutered or intact by looking at him, why would they bother with notching the ears?

Male cats require a careful palpation to assess for testicles. How many stray and feral cats are actually assessed before they are killed? Most likely, NONE. True, feral cats are unlikely to be neutered, and cats are the majority of shelter intakes in most areas, usually by a 2-to-1 margin. Yet shelters lump their presumptions regarding the reproductive status of dogs right in there with those of feral cats and kittens to drum up sensationalism in their propaganda.

We do know that 78% of owned dogs and 88% of owned cats are sterilized. (APPMA 2012 nationwide owner survey). Here in California, the latest shelter stats show that out of 467,000 dogs entering our shelters in 2010, 89,000 were owner-surrendered. So, about 20% who were "pre-owned", shall we say. The 90% figure is suspect simply due to the fact that, based on averages, at least 15% of intakes would be sterilized former pets. And only if virtually NONE of the other intakes were sterilized would there be a ghost of a chance of approching that 90% figure.

Incidentally, the California stats do not include reproductive status, of either dogs OR cats. For obvious reasons discussed here. Yet ASPCA continues to pronounce their bullshit facts and figures on their websaite as gospel truth.

Shelters are presuming to know what they cannot possibly know, the reproductive status of their intakes. They rebuke the public for the false presumption of failure to neuter, and, to add further insult to injury, they are lumping dogs and cats together....but only when it suits their agenda of sensationalizing their phoney baloney statistics.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Canine racism

In the early 20th century German Shepherds were reviled. They were regarded as aggressive, mean and untrustworthy. The mental association of the breed with German Nazis didn’t help its image either. What turned the tide in the negative public perception of this breed was the advent of a nationwide television hero named “Rin Tin Tin.” Suddenly, a breed that was shunned, feared and hated became adored as a family pet and admired for its courage and loyalty.

Every era needs its scapegoat, and so it goes today, with the popular media and even some so-called “dog bloggers” (who really should know better) railing against “pit bulls.”

For decades, one of the most popular types of dog in this country has been the “bully”-type breeds. This type of dog has served as the mascot for the “Little Rascals”, the logo dog for “Target” stores, the dog listening with rapt attention to the RCA Victrola, and the “Spuds Mackenzie” dog in beer commercials. Helen Keller owned a beloved bull terrier. Millions choose dogs of this type when selecting a family dog, and why not? According to aficionados, the Bull Terrier was known in Victorian times in England as the “nanny dog” because it was so reliable with children. Whether the legend about this nickname was true or not, it certainly COULD have been true. Bully breed dogs are smart and loyal and brave, known on many occasions to save the lives of their owners. Just like all dogs of all breeds.

Breeds that are popular tend to be over-represented in shelter statistics and bite statistics. This only means that there are more of them around, not that they are a problem based solely on their type of breed. There are a lot of Chihuahuas in shelters too, and they figure way up at the top of the list for dog bites as well. The most pressing concern about dog bites is the risk of rabies, and that risk is the same regardless of whether the bite came from a bulldog or a Chihuahua.

It's amazing that people who would be immediately offended if a human racial slur was slung are so willing to fall into that sort of insulting and ignorant activity when it comes to dog breeds.

Now we are seeing unsubstantiated claims thrown about that “pit bulls” are a large percentage of shelter intakes and deaths. To illustrate the fallacy of this idea, here is a message I just received from a friend of mine in response to an article I posted about shelter stats on our breed club list:

“I am not sure where they get the information on "Pit Bulls" - it seems to me that pretty much anything large can get that designation. A neighbor's AKC Labrador escaped and was impounded. They swore they had not had any Labs brought in, yet there he was. But he was a Pit Bull. Good job she went and checked personally instead of just taking their word for it.”

This is a typical scenario. Shelter workers are conditioned to be disgusted at the sight of “pitbulls” and to watch warily for them at every turn. And all those misidentified dogs are lumped into the statistics claiming that “pit bulls” are rampant in shelters.

The California Federation of Dog Clubs has produced a Breed ID workshop for shelter workers. There is a quiz included with pictures of dogs of many breeds, and quite a few of them look similar to so-called “pit bulls”. In fact, according to the CFoDC, there are 25 purebred breeds that are commonly mistaken for “pit bulls” including Boxers, Rottweilers and (yep) even Labrador retrievers.

Try for yourself and see how easy it is to identify a dog breed just based on appearance alone:

At the risk of sounding trite, how we can treat man's best friend this way? He gives his all for us, and we villainize him, outlaw him, and kill him. 

Sunday, June 24, 2012

APHIS Illumination

Many thanks to the wonderful folks at Washington Animal Watch and The Cavalry Group for their fantastic work on the new APHIS rule proposal and the PUPS bill. They're savvy enough to present the information in an easy-to-understand visual format and are busily disseminating that information on social networks like Facebook. Here are two posters from WAW, along with a nice flowchart that was formulated by Mindy Patterson's Cavalry Group. Thanks Mindy! 
Please "LIKE" Washington Animal Watch and The Cavalry Group on Facebook and be sure to follow their respective sites ( and Great information to pass along to your family and friends who may not be intimately involved in the dog world. 

Thursday, June 14, 2012

ALERT - USDA Proposal to Regulate Hobby Breeders

ALERT - USDA proposal to regulate hobby breeders

The Humane Society of the US

recently submitted a petition on the "" website asking the Federal government to crack down on "puppy mills". In response to the over 30,000 signatures on that petition, USDA/APHIS is considering revising their rules.
Currently, anyone who sells pets at retail is exempt from USDA licensure requirements. That means if you are a hobby breeder or a pet store selling pets directly to the public, you do not need a license from the USDA. Only those breeders who sell pets at the wholesale level currently need a USDA license.
The new rule, however, would revise the definition of "retail seller".
If you:
  • Have MORE than four intact female animals, and 
  • ADVERTISE over the internet, in the newspaper or over the telephone, and
  • Don't arrange for each buyer to visit your place of business to see the pet before or immediately after the purchase, then
You would no longer be considered an exempt retail seller, and under the new proposal would be required to be licensed and inspected by USDA.
Needless to say, this would be devastating to most serious hobby breeders. However, the USDA is accepting public comments on this proposed new rule. ALL comments will be read and considered. We call upon all pet owners to contact the USDA either on-line or by mail and inform them of your concerns over this proposal.
Be sure to have your comments submiktted on line or sent by mail by July 16th. Note that letters sent by mail MUST be received on or before July 16th to be considered.
The link that will take you to the "submit comments" page is:
Do not send form letters. All form letters that are the same but signed by different individuals are considered ONE letter, no matter how many are received by APHIS. Your personal comment is important, even if it is only a sentence or two. A long letter is not necessary. You may comment more than once.
When commenting on line, please note that there is a time limit (approximately 20 minutes) that you can keep the "submit comments" page open. If you want to take time to compose your letter, then it is most efficient to draft it in a word program and then cut and paste it onto the comment section.  
In writing your letters or comments, you may wish to use some of the following talking points:
  • It would be cost-prohibitive for me to have to build a USDA-compliant kennel. I would be unable to continue breeding.
  • I prefer to raise pets in my home for optimal socialization. I do not wish to keep them in a kennel.
  • This proposal would be harmful to my rare breed. Buyers are usually distant and rarely visit the premises during a sales transaction.
  • I am selective in the homes I approve for my puppies; I sell few pets locally, and must advertise and ship. This proposal would hinder my ability to find the best homes for my pets.
  • This new rule would be financially devastating to me. I cannot afford thousands of dollars to build a kennel facility to come into USDA compliance.
  • Requiring me to allow strangers into my home exposes my animals to contagious diseases. These can be fatal, particularly for young puppies and kittens.
  • Strangers entering my home makes me vulnerable to criminals who could target me for robbery or other crimes.
  • Strangers entering my home can include animal rights activists who are philosophically opposed to any pet breeding. These extremists may likely file unsubstantiated complaints against me, claiming authority by having entered my home.
  • Rescue groups often rely on use of a foster home network. They could not comply with USDA requirements and would be forced to cease operations. Crippling rescue groups would cause shelter intakes and deaths to rise.
  • This proposal is government overreach.
  • This proposal is a violation of my right to privacy.
  • As a pet owner, I am concerned about my future ability to purchase a well-bred, well-socialized pet for a reasonable price.
  • I am concerned about the future availability of service dogs, such as guide dogs for the blind. These dogs must be exposed to a variety of social situations and external stimuli. If serious hobby breeders are forced to keep their dogs and puppies in kennels, those dogs will not be suitable for service work.
  • As a hobby breeder who works away from my home, I cannot comply with the APHIS requirement to be available for unannounced inspections. I would be forced to quit breeding or face thousands of dollars in fines for noncompliance with this rules.
There are undoubtedly many more concerns with this new proposal. You may return to the page and comment as many times as you wish.
The AKC is also gathering signatures on a petition to send to USDA.
As of today, June 14, 2012, there are over 31,000 signatures on the AKC petition….a nice counter to the HSUS anti-breeder petition. Please do sign the AKC petition also, but remember, your signature on a petition is NOT a substitute for your official, personal comment to the USDA on their website. Both are helpful, but your personal comment to the USDA is ESSENTIAL to defeat this proposal.
Thank you for taking a few moments out of your day to post a comment to the USDA and to sign AKC's petition.
Sincerely yours,
Officers and Board of Directors
Federation of Dog Clubs
*****Cross-posting encouraged******

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

USDA attempts to regulate small breeders

How many of our rights and freedoms are we supposed to sacrifice in the attempt to protect the morons who don't research their purchases? Just when does the onus for personal responsibility enter the picture?

If you buy "hot" merchandise there is a legal presumption that you should know better. Why should people not be held accountable when they themselves support sellers and brokers like "Wizard of Claws" and such? Those buyers are perpetuating the problem and they are just as bad as the ones who sell them the dogs. IMO they get what they deserve when they buy without doing their due diligence and proper homework.

The government takes a few random complaints from idjits as their excuse to intrude and impose their ridiculous, excessive "standards" across the board. Like all government agencies, the primary operative mode for the USDA is self-preservation; expanding its sphere of influence and sucking up more and more of our tax dollars to ensure survival.

If we point out the exemption for the casual home breeder, who thoughtlessly allows their unregistered, unvaccinated, un-health-tested bitch to have an unplanned litter, next thing we know THAT will be made illegal and the owners of ALL bitches everywhere will be included....they'll dredge up the good ol' PUPS standard of ONE BITCH as the threshold for federal regulation.

Let's face it, the intent is not (or at least should not be) to "regulate" businesses that abuse animals, but to drive them out of business. And the ARs know that support for that goal will take out many other too. That's their plan! Unfortunately the rest of us will go down the drain right along with the few abusers when they are legislated out of the picture. The free market generally works best. Exposes and public education have worked to solve the  "overpopulation crisis", why not education about how NOT to buy a dog to solve the problem of unethical internet sellers?

Monday, June 11, 2012

Trojan Horse

A proposed change in USDA rules would bring almost every pet breeder under federal guidelines, forcing them to build commercial kennels and submit to unannounced inspections by either the public or the USDA. The new proposal would appease the blood-lust of animal extremist groups like the HSUS, PETA, ASPCA, and In Defense of Animals. These groups support a surge in the war against pet breeders, and using the US Federal government to aid in their vendetta makes it even more objectionable. Imagine our own federal income tax dollars spent in the quest to shut down any in-home pet breeding. Nauseating.

The new proposal comes at a time when we find the Federal government under heavy pressure from the HSUS and other AR groups to over-regulate animal breeders under the guise of improving animal welfare. Anti-hunting, anti-breeding, and anti-agriculture bills are popping up all over, and our legislators still don't seem to be clued in yet to the AR agenda.

The idea with the new USDA proposal is supposedly "to close a loophole for pets sold on the Internet." The truth is, there is no "loophole" that needs closing. Pet breeders are heavily regulated already at the Federal, state and/or local levels. With the federal budget deficit, there are insufficient resources to enforce the rules for commercial breeders as currently defined without bringing thousands of new entities under the USDA umbrella. And, so-called "Puppy Mill Bills" have been passed in almost a dozen large states, making federal intervention unnecessary in those locales.

A comment period is currently open until July 16. Please do go to the site to voice your objections and request the proposal be withdrawn:

To view previous comments and get an idea of what others have already said, check here:

Now, ay, here's the rub. Should enough people complain that the USDA withdraws the new rules, there is a bill pending in Congress that will accomplish pretty much the same goal. This bill is PUPS and we have blogged about it here previously. PUPS would tag anyone with ownership of ONE bitch, who sells "X"-amount of dogs or puppies in a year, as a commercial breeder. Makes no difference if you are an active hobbyist who does some breeding but still operates at a financial loss as most do….it's just a numbers game played with the intent to stop breeding by any means possible.

PUPS has nearly enough sponsors to be passed should it come to a vote. And, if the new APHIS regulations are not implemented once the July comment period closes, then I strongly suspect that PUPS will be brought up almost immediately for a vote quicker than we can say "WHAM BAM THANK YOU MA'AM ".

So it is important to continue to oppose on both fronts….PUPS as well as the new APHIS regulations.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Dogs - Pets, or Livestock?

We often hear from animal extremist groups that pets are not products or commodities, they are family members. They are not livestock and should not be treated or viewed as livestock. After all, dogs and cats are not usually intended as meat for the dinner plate (unless, of course, you attend a party thrown by the Obama family).

Yet, that's exactly how the US government regards dogs, cats and other pets. Our government considers pets as livestock, subject to US Dept of Agriculture rules and regulations.

Here's a description I found online regarding the purpose of the USDA:

The primary purpose of the USDA is to make sure that all American food that is manufactured and consumed is safe, nutritious and sustainable. The USDA thus establishes and enforces regulations about food handling, preparation and manufacturing. It seeks to find ways to make crops healthier, such as growing certain hybrids or reducing pesticide use. It also works with farmers to develop techniques that enable the farmers to produce crops without injury in an efficient and renewable way.

The USDA employs 100,000 people in their effort to regulate farming. So, how did this behemoth agency stray so far from its original purpose? When did they make the leap from protecting our food supply to assuming the moral authority for dictating every minute detail of animal care and pet breeding?

And, despite the USDA encroaching upon the territory of pet breeding, the public perception of breeders remains very poor. USDA regulation seems to be the mark of a disreputable breeder in the mind of the public, and not the reverse.

We “hobby” breeders have fed into that negative stereotype. After all, WE breed for health and fitness and proper conformation, THEY do not. WE lose our shirts. THEY make money! We mindlessly accept the idea that the Other Guy needs regulations. Not us!

But of course, a breeder is a breeder is a breeder. And now, with our willingness to regulate the Other Guy, we may end up sliding down our own slippery slope.

The USDA is concerned that “commercial breeders” are escaping its regulation by selling via the internet. The idea seems to be that selling via the internet is unscrupulous. Gosh, wonder who put that bug in their ear? Why, HSUS, PETA, and other extremist groups, naturally. So now, the USDA is announcing proposed changes to the provisions that delineate who must be commercially licensed and who may be excused. The USDA is entertaining the idea that smaller, hobby breeders should have the doors to their homes open to the public, much like the retail pet stores who are exempt from USDA regulation. If hobby breeders own more than four breeding dogs, or do not have buyers visit their home, they would have to apply for a USDA commercial license and comply with the reams of APHIS regulations.

There are several major problems with such an idea that leap out immediately. Firstly, few hobby breeders sell locally, so a rule requiring every animal to be seen in its home is unreasonable from a practical standpoint. Secondly, our right to privacy in our homes should be sacrosanct. No one should be strong-armed into turning their residence into a public display area. Of course, there are safety concerns involved with allowing strangers to traipse through your home. Assault, rape, robbery and even murder are not uncommon these days. More than one breeder has been unfairly charged with animal abuse based upon casual visitors who entered their home. Meetings between buyers and sellers are more safely conducted in a public location such as a park, a dog show, or a veterinarian’s office. And last but not least, APHIS regulations prohibit raising dogs in your home. They would effectively eliminate the smaller-scale breeders.

The attempt to eliminate internet sales ignores the fact that that this is the internet age. All pet breeders, commercial or otherwise, use the internet as a communication and sales tool.

I must confess, I have bought dogs via the internet myself, using email communication, online pictures and pedigrees. I experienced no problem with my transactions, but if there had been any glitches, I would have considered that the risk that I chose to take in my situation. I much prefer freedom and choices and accepting responsibility for my own actions to having the government micromanage my activities. We have all seen how well Federal oversight works in so many areas – NOT! Just consider the TSA, the Patriot Act, the failed war on drugs, the lack of control of our border. The list goes on and on. But, I digress….

Did we mention that HSUS lacky and animal rights attorney Sarah Conant has been hired as the head of the APHIS enforcement department? I'm sure she is just waiting to pounce on as many breeders as she can possibly find.

This is scarey stuff, folks.
Pet breeding should be regulated at the local level, with minimal rules and inspections related to basic health, sanitation and rabies control That’s it!

US presidential candidate Ron Paul advocates for the elimination of several Federal agencies. The USDA is not on that list. After all, we do need some public oversight of our food supply. But perhaps it is time to put the seriously overweight USDA on a diet. There’s quite a bit of fat to be trimmed in that department.

Here's the link to the proposed changes. Somebody sure has a lot of free time on their hands.